Oct 10

Episode 234: Bathroom Regularity, Irritable Bowel, The Supplement Industry, Slow Or Fast Weight Loss, Timing Coffee & Caffeine, Family Meal Timing, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 234 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:

LMNT: For Fasting Or Low-Carb Diets Electrolytes Are Key For Relieving Hunger, Cramps, Headaches, Tiredness, And Dizziness. With No Sugar, Artificial Ingredients, Coloring, And Only 2 Grams Of Carbs Per Packet, Try LMNT For Complete And Total Hydration. For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!!

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SHOW NOTES

1:10 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go Tdrinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!!

13:00 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

15:25 - Listener Q&A: Liv - 1-2 hour window, constipation, when everything balances out?

22:00 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save Up To 10% Off Any Order!

FOOD SENSE GUIDEGet Melanie's App At melanieavalon.com/foodsenseguide To Tackle Your Food Sensitivities! Food Sense Includes A Searchable Catalogue Of 300+ Foods, Revealing Their Gluten, FODMAP, Lectin, Histamine, Amine, Glutamate, Oxalate, Salicylate, Sulfite, And Thiol Status. Food Sense Also Includes Compound Overviews, Reactions To Look For, Lists Of Foods High And Low In Them, The Ability To Create Your Own Personal Lists, And More!

Stay Up To Date With All The News And Pre-Order Info About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase!

34:35 - Listener Q&A: Cathy - Clean fast

39:30 - GREEN CHEF: Go To greenchef.com/ifpodcast125 And Use Code IFPODCAST125 To Get $125 Off Including Free Shipping!

41:25 - Listener Q&A: Kristy - Optimal time for coffee?

48:20 - Listener Q&A: Melody - Crossroad on my IF journey

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 234 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.  

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Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 234 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 great. We've been running around all day, and running in here to get started recording the podcast. The weather has really changed here. Has it changed there? It just feels so different. 

Melanie Avalon: It does feel different. It's rainy, but it's not like cold yet.  

Gin Stephens: No, it's not cold. I actually went swimming yesterday. Even though it's cooler. We finally got the pool. The pool is 100% ready to go. We wanted to test out. They just hooked up the pool heater. I cranked it up. I wanted to see what would happen, how long it would take. The pool was 75 degrees, so it wasn't really cold to start with. Although you know me, 75 is cold in water. I cranked it up to 90 to see how long it would take to get my little tiny pool at 90. It did it pretty quickly. Man, I felt like heaven. So, I swam and enjoyed my 90-degree pool and then turned off the pool heater and that was it. 

Melanie Avalon: I learned this fun fact this week. Did you know you probably didn't know that you can die of hypothermia in water that is just as long as it's just like barely below your body temperature, if you're there long enough? 

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know that I would have known what the temperature was. But, yeah, because it takes the heat out of our bodies. I taught elementary science for a long time, and so I always taught my kids heat likes to share. Heat always goes from the hotter thing to the cooler thing, it transfers. That makes perfect sense. Eventually your body wants to maintain 98.6 or whatever your body temperature is. If you're in a body of water that's cooler than yourself, heat transfers from your body into the water. Eventually, I guess your body can't keep up. It just depends. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I never thought about it before, but it's pretty interesting. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it doesn't have to be freezing water for you to get hypothermia.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Can I tell you my crazy update story?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: About the Whole Foods guy? 

Gin Stephens: I can't wait to hear it. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: So, you encouraged me to just put myself out there. 

Gin Stephens: And go looking like yourself. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I did not go looking like myself, but I went back, I think last week, and I needed to get dressed up anyway, because I was going to go out with my cousin, and then she canceled on me. Then I was like, “Well, I need to go to Whole Foods. So just go to Whole Foods.” [laughs] I went to Whole Foods, and he was there. I awkwardly, again, walked around the store with no purpose, trying to get up the courage to talk to him. And then, it was this awkward moment where he was in a cashier lane that wasn't open. But there was a really long line at another cashier lane. I was like, “I'll just wait in this line long enough. And maybe he'll be like, ‘Oh, come to my lane.’” But then the self-checkout girl was like, “You can just come over here.” And I was like, “Um.” [laughs] I'm such a rule follower person, but I was like, “Okay.” I checked out, I had given up, I was like, “This is not going to happen.” So, I left the store, but he was outside. Gin, this is so bad. He was outside putting the carts away. I was like, “I just have to do this. This is the time." I saw him pushing a cart. And I was like, “This just has to happen now or never.” I drove up to him in my car, and I rolled down the window. And he said, “Hi.” [laughs] I was like, “Three questions for you.” [laughs] He was like-- 

Gin Stephens: Oh, no, I can't wait to hear what those questions are. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: He was like, “Okay,” and then I was like, “Well, actually, maybe just one question. It depends on the first question.” And he was like, “Okay,” and then I was like, “Do you have a girlfriend?” [laughs] And then, he was like, “Yes.” 

Gin Stephens: Aww. And you're like, “Okay, I just have one. That's it.”  

Melanie Avalon: And then, I was like, “Okay, well, that was my question.”  

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm so proud of you for putting yourself out there. 

Melanie Avalon: I am mortified. He was like, “Thanks.” I drove away. I'm mortified. I'm not doing that again. 

Gin Stephens: Well, no, I don't think you should be mortified. Why would you be mortified? 

Melanie Avalon: I just feel like that's a little bit embarrassing.  

Gin Stephens: No. Look, I am 100% certain that we're all just screwed up inside. Of course, I've been married for 30 years, so take it with a grain of salt. But imagine as awkward as it felt for you to ask that question, imagine if he did not have a girlfriend and was interested in you, and might feel awkward about asking you, something like that. So, if everybody just goes around worrying about how awkward it feels, no one's ever going to meet anybody else. So put yourself out there. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, I definitely did that. 

Gin Stephens: And you did. And you know what? No shame in that. 

Melanie Avalon: But every time now that I go to Whole Foods-- so before it was like, “I hope he's there. I hope he's there.” Now I'm like, “I hope he's not here.” 

Gin Stephens: Nope, you own it and you talk to him because he doesn't have a wife. [laughs] That doesn't mean that he'll be with that girlfriend forever. Maybe they'll break up in a week, who knows, you never know. 

Melanie Avalon: I can be his rebound.  

Gin Stephens: Well, exactly. You just never know. So, do not have any shame in that. I would absolutely still be like, “Hey, how are you doing?” I would talk to him. Of course, I'm old. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I never talked to him when I'm not my normal self. Only when I'm dressed up. 

Gin Stephens: I would talk to him anytime now just because you've already broken the ice. 

Melanie Avalon: I feel like I need to apologize. 

Gin Stephens: No. Why would you apologize? 

Melanie Avalon: For like, I don't know, just driving up to him and asking him about his relationship status. 

Gin Stephens: Nope. I mean, that's how people used to do it back in the day with words, [laughs] face to face that's all we had. I mean, you could put a note in my locker, but that was the limit. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: It's interesting, though, socially, girls are not the one who-- even still, like, it's not normal for girls to walk up to a guy and do that.  

Gin Stephens: I think that might be, when you get older, like me, like I said, I've been off market for 30 years, but I think the rules are changed. I think you can. I think it's okay. 

Melanie Avalon: I did.  

Gin Stephens: Well, good.  

Melanie Avalon: I just need to see him once, like, it's just that first initial like, “Oh, man, awkward,” and then I'll be good. 

Gin Stephens: I would just act like it's perfectly perfect. Like, “Hey, how are you doing?” I would definitely do that. I would not be the least bit embarrassed. There's no reason to be embarrassed. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I'll feel it out. I'll probably just avoid them like the plague.  

Gin Stephens: I wouldn't do that. I think that men like confident women who are not afraid to put themselves out there. I think that has to be attractive. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, it's funny, I posted a story about it on Instagram, and probably 30 people have messaged me, saying that, like, “Oh, that's so confident.” And I'm like, “Friends, I am not confident. It was not confident.” 

Gin Stephens: Fake it till you make it. That was confidence but you did it, though, that you were confident enough to do it. So, rewrite that message you're telling yourself, “You are confident.” 

Melanie Avalon: Okay, pep talk for all the ladies out there, confidence. My three questions were going to be. One, “Do you have a girlfriend?” And he was supposed to say no. And then, I was going to say, “Are you straight?” And he was supposed to say yes. And then I was going to say, “Do you want to get drinks?” That was the plan. But it did not manifest as such. 

Gin Stephens: I mean, he could be crazy. So, maybe you just lucked out. 

Melanie Avalon: This is true. So, that's my story. 

Gin Stephens: Well, thank you for that update. I know everyone is happy. And so now though, again, next time you're in there, you need to be confident and even if you're just dressed normal and not fancy, just be like, “Hey, how are you doing?” Smile and walk on and you got nothing to worry about. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay, I'll just hear Gin in my head. Smile and walk. 

Gin Stephens: Exactly. What's the worst thing that can happen? Nothing. No guy is thinking, “Darn it. Why did that attractive woman asked me if I had a girlfriend?” No man will think of that. The very worst you made him feel good about himself.  

Melanie Avalon: True.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. You should ask more men that question. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] I was going to start walking up to all the men. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: “Hello, do you have a girlfriend?” [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I'm very rarely attracted to people, in general. I don't know.  

Gin Stephens: I know what you mean, I get that.  

Melanie Avalon: And it's a completely random, like, I can't like put a-- I don't know why I am, but I just am, was, so yes.  

Gin Stephens: Anything could still happen.  

Melanie Avalon: This is true.  

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They make safe skincare and makeup products that are extensively tested to be free of endocrine disrupters, obesogens, and other toxic compounds. They're truly safe and supportive of your health. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. 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 melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Well, now you can. All right, now back to the show.  

Shall we jump into everything for today? 

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have a question from Liv and the subject is, “One-to-two-hour window, constipation, when everything balances out?” She says, "Hi, Melanie and Gin. I adore your podcast and love to skip around depending on the day and what I need regarding tips, IF education, and motivation. I'm a 30-year-old female and I've been athletic and health food based my entire life. Growing up on a fruit orchard with health-conscious parents was very helpful in my building blocks for plant based and whole food eating. I worked in a health food store through high school and college and have always been drawn to naturopathic and holistic medicine. That said, I avoid junk processed foods in excess of dairy or meat etc. However, like most people, I keep a balance and do eat desserts every now and then and I drink wine regularly. I used to kill myself at the gym to knock out my stubborn 10 pounds of extra fat. That seems to be so cozy around my midsection and hips. I could run five to seven miles a day and nothing was as successful for me as IF. I have been on and off this way of life for five years and never stuck to it for maintenance as I should have.  

I am now back on two weeks eating a one-to-two-hour window and feeling amazing. Weight is falling off again and I'm sticking to my tennis game and more leisurely physical fitness. Huge plus in this heat in Ohio. My question is one, I have not heard discussed too much on your podcast or maybe I'm missing the episode. Pooping.” Can I just say, Melanie, she just must not be in the Facebook groups? Of course, I'm not on Facebook anymore, but I'm still in the moderator chat. I can just tell you, Liv, pooping is a frequent topic of discussion and the moderators joke about who gets to answer it. From constipation to diarrhea, it comes up and people are not afraid to ask anything about pooping. Do you hear it in your group?  

Melanie Avalon: I do. For some reason I feel like maybe not quite as much, but there's a lot of bowel discussion for sure. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the Ask a Moderator is full of poop talk and some people run away from those questions. They're like, “No,” and then they’ll tag another moderator. [laughs] -get them to answer. On to Liv’s question. She says, “Yes. Can we all admit we poop and discuss IF and pooping issues? I am someone who likes to poop every day and when I don't, I get irritable. Does my window reflect too small of an eating window to produce a daily bowel movement? Is constipation a temporary thing? As women, I feel we're more subject to this physiologically.” I'm not sure that's true for women, maybe. 

Melanie Avalon: I think so. 

Gin Stephens: I know we have a lot of water balance issues that can affect things in our bowels as well, but men have the issue, too. 

Melanie Avalon: IBS is associated with women more. 

Gin Stephens: Is it? Or do women just be more likely to mention it that?  

Melanie Avalon: That is possible, that is very possible. 

Gin Stephens: I feel Chad could be having whatever in the world is going on? And he's not going to tell me. Of course, other men are different but who knows. She says, “How long does it take to regulate? Can you please describe your experiences and/or share your research on this topic?” Liv, I'm a great pooper. [laughs] The more vegetables I eat, the better it is. All right. 

Melanie Avalon: The more I eat the worse it is.  

Gin Stephens: Really, yeah, the more I eat, the better it is. When I was eating according to the ZOE protocol. It was like even the best ever. She says, “I think ketosis and fasting can really change things for people here. I feel it's valuable to discuss in order for me to feel a little more normal. Also, I've read that most people are carrying around a minimum of 10 pounds of bile. Now she said bile, but I wonder if she meant bile.  

Melanie Avalon: She probably meant-- 

Gin Stephens: Like just waste products in our like fecal matter? Yeah. She says, “Yeah, yuck. I have to guess that I have helped with this because sometimes, and sorry, this is nasty. Sometimes what comes out and these first few weeks back to fasting, feels like that type of stored sludge, for lack of a better term backing me up. No shame in the pooping game. Love you both, Liv.” 

Melanie Avalon: Thank you for your question. This is perfect timing. I had a colonoscopy a few days ago. And it was really exciting. Have you had one, Gin?  

Gin Stephens: No, not yet.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I've had three. It was like a clean bill. What was interesting was she said I have a twisty colon. Have you heard of that?  

Gin Stephens: Well, no.  

Melanie Avalon: So, I haven't hardcore gone down the rabbit research hole on it. Because I don't want to because I don't want to. I briefly googled it and it said that it can relate to things like constipation and stuff like that. So, I was like, “Oh, that might explain a lot.” 

Gin Stephens: Well, it sounds like it totally could explain a lot, because if your physiology is just a little bit off, then things can't flow through. They're supposed do that, that could really make a lot of sense. And then maybe that could cause backing up into your small intestines and some issues like you've had there with SIBO, I don't know. 

Melanie Avalon: Speaking to that, one of the things I really noticed, because, Liv, I can identify with you, although she said she's just been back to her intermittent fasting for two weeks. It could be something that does regulate, because when some people make big changes in their eating windows, sometimes it does take a little bit to regulate. I think something that it might depend on is, historically, have you had issues with constipation or IBS? Or, is it just when you do the fasting? If you've had issues before, then it quite possibly will be an ongoing thing. I as well identify with you, I get very irritable if things aren't flowing. So, I do all that I can to make sure things are flowing. Oh, you know what else is really interesting? I came out of the anesthesia and the doctor who she was really nice and really amazing. But she was going over my results, she was asking me about my bowel habits. And I said that I take a lot of magnesium to keep things flowing, because that works really well for me. And she was like, “Oh, well, you should definitely just take MiraLAX.” And I was like, “But the magnesium works.” And she was like, “No, you should really just take MiraLAX and then she left. 

Gin Stephens: That sounds like really bad advice. 

Melanie Avalon: I know, she left. I was talking to my mom and I was like, “Why was she so insistent I take MiraLAX?” We were just talking about how with conventional doctors, it's like they're trained to just prescribe the conventional pharmaceutical route to things. So needless to say, I will not be switching to MiraLAX. Liv, if your constipation ends up being something that is ongoing, like I said, magnesium works really, really well for me. 

Gin Stephens: And it's an essential nutrient. 

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. It's like win-win situation. And that was actually something that I was really happy about with the colonoscopy, because, basically, with my own personal-- man, this is just the personal Melanie episode. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: Tell you what, [laughs] do you ever have gas? What about belching? 

Melanie Avalon: Oh my gosh, I actually don't. [laughs] Anyways, I find that I can really keep things flowing really well with magnesium, but I have been a little bit concerned about it, because I feel like I'm causing myself to have the bowel movements. I was wondering if it's okay to be doing high dose magnesium to keep things flowing and all of that, but the colonoscopy was like perfectly fine. So that was really reassuring. It's not just me with the magnesium, a lot of people report this, so many people in my Facebook group IF Biohackers report that when they started taking magnesium, especially Magnesium Breakthrough by BiOptimizers and I did not plan this. But that actually really helps their bowel movements. We do have a discount code for them. So, if you go to magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast10, that will get you 10% off any of their products, but in particular, their Magnesium Breakthrough is what they are promoting with that link. A lot of people have reported that that really, really helps. So, I take that.  

I also have found that a low FODMAP diet, and that's just personal to me, but basically finding the foods that work for you, and it's very individual, which we already discussed, because like Gin for example, when she eats a lot of vegetables, she has great bowel movements. 

Gin Stephens: They're perfect.  

Melanie Avalon: If I eat a lot of vegetables, no, not good bowel movements, and it'll just kind of stop everything. I really do a low FODMAP approach. You can actually get my app Food Sense Guide and it has over 300 foods and it tells if they are low, medium or high FODMAP and it also includes a lot of other compounds that you might be reacting to, like histamine and gluten and oxalates and sulfites and thiols and nightshades and AIP, so that might be a helpful resource if you want to try playing with the foods that you're eating. So, that is at melanieavalon.com/foodsenseguide 

This is something else that the doctor said, so I find that if I use HCL and digestive enzymes, that those really, really helped digest my food and stop me from getting blockages or constipated. It helps so much, so, so much. I told the doctor, when I came out of the colonoscopy that I was taking those, she said, “You shouldn't take those. There's no scientific support behind that.” It was frustrating. I was like, “It helps me so much and it's completely natural.” I don't know, it was a little bit frustrating. BiOptimizers, they do make HCL supplements and digestive enzymes. So, you might want to try that. And then like you mentioned psychologically, or she said, physiologically, but psychologically, I think it plays a role as well. I really, really think it's about finding the foods and a pattern that can work for you and using the support where you need it to really get things flowing. It might, like I said, it's only been two weeks. So, it might regulate, but if it doesn't, there's a lot of things that you can try for sure. Gin, do you have thoughts? 

Gin Stephens: Just you know, as I said at the beginning, we have a lot of questions about constipation to diarrhea and everything in between when people start off, there seems to be an adjustment period for a lot of people. I didn't have it. I did not have that adjustment period. Either way, like some people have the dumping kind of a syndrome thing. Where are they? As soon as they open their window, they're running to the bathroom. It just gets their digestion started in there and they're pooping right away. Other people, they're putting less food in, so less foods coming out. They can be constipated.  

I don't know, for me, I just am lucky. I've never really had these problems. But I also was already taking magnesium before I started intermittent fasting, because I did that whole summer of keto before I switched over to intermittent fasting and I had a lot of trouble sleeping while I was doing keto. In the keto community, they're like, "Trouble sleeping? Take magnesium because it helps our bodies relax.” I was already taking magnesium and I've taken magnesium ever since I've been-- I am not a supplement person. People know this about me. I don't take a million things. I take very few things, and magnesium is the thing I have been taking since 2014 without stopping. It helps me to sleep and also I wake up in the morning and I take my magnesium at bedtime just whatever the dosage is on the capsule, on the bottle of whatever I've been taking right now, it is Magnesium Breakthrough but it's been other things in the past. Whatever the recommended dosage is, I take that at bedtime and go to bed, go to sleep.  

Wake up in the morning, have my coffee, go to the bathroom. It's clockwork for me. Did I ever tell the story, Melanie, about how Chad wanted to go fishing really early when we first got his little boat? We haven't been in a long time, but he would want to go really early in the morning and we would have to get up and I'm like, “I can't be out on the boat until I've gone to the bathroom.” [laughs] Because that that doesn't sound very fun to me. I'm just a very regular, and then that's it. If I have a big eating window, I might go more than once during the day even, not just that once in the morning. I don't know if the magnesium has helped me, maybe if I wasn't taking magnesium when I started doing intermittent fasting, maybe I would have had one of those problems, but because I go to the bathroom in the fasted state, I think when I open my window, I don't have anything for my body to dump out. So, I don't know if that's been the secret to my success and I didn't even know it.  

Melanie Avalon: I have an exciting update to what I just said. I haven't looked at the full offer right now for BiOptimizers, so it's not just 10% off, actually at that link right now, this is so exciting. So, if you go to magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast10, and use the code IFPODCAST10, so you will save 10% when you try Magnesium Breakthrough, but then on top of that you will get a free bottle of P3-OM. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, that's true. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, a free bottle of P3-OM, which is their bestselling probiotic, which also that could possibly really help. I love that probiotic. And MassZymes, which are the enzymes. I was just talking about-- that's so perfect. Okay, so over $50 worth of free supplements, one of which I just recommended for you and the other I would have recommended if I had remembered it. magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast10, 10% off discount, plus the chance to get a free P3-OM and MassZymes. The reason they founded their company was to help fix people's digestions. 

Gin Stephens: And their own. They'd founded it for because they got interested in it because they needed it for themselves. Like you and the Serrapeptase, that's just the thing. That's why I trust them. I've said before, I'm weird about who I trust when it comes to supplements by trust BiOptimizers they actually sponsor Intermittent Fasting Stories as well. I say no to lots of companies, mostly supplement companies all the time as a no, no, no, but I said yes to BiOptimizers. 

Melanie Avalon: I have been going down the rabbit hole this week with the supplement companies creating the Serrapeptase because there are so many Serrapeptases on the market, and a lot of them say on the bottle that they're free of fillers. But I've been working with the guy I'm creating a supplement with and he's like, “I don't know if we can make it without a filler.” And I'm like, “Well, what about all these other ones for making it without fillers?” So, we've been going through and looking at them and finding out what's really going on and they do tricky things with the labels. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Well, hello, welcome to-- Yeah. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. They make it seem like it's without fillers, but it really is. 

Gin Stephens: Lies.  

Melanie Avalon: A lot of them are said to be enteric-coated Serrapeptase free of fillers. So, basically, they say that the Serrapeptase itself is enteric coated. That coating is like a filler. It's not something you want to be putting in your body. We've been doing a lot of lab testing and trying to figure out, “Can we make it with no fillers? If it has to be filler, what is that going to be?” It might be something like benign, like cellulose, but oh, even like a lot of the bottles will-- they'll make it seem like it's like calcium, but it's basically like the equivalent of a magnesium steroids. It's not really calcium. It's this filler material. I've been learning so much. And now I'm just like, A, I need to make this Serrapeptase, so I can make one that I feel comfortable about. B, I just want to make my own versions of everything that I'm taking, because then I will know. So, yeah, for listeners, if you'd like to get on the preorder list for that, that's at melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. S-E-R-R-A-P-E-P-T-A-S-E. I'm excited.  

Gin Stephens: So much of the supplement industry is not trustworthy.  

Melanie Avalon: It's so sketchy.  

Gin Stephens: It really is sketchy. I am super, super-- especially when I was doing my research for Clean(ish) and it's in the book, I talk about what they found when they've actually looked in certain supplements and found what's in there and it's like prescription medications that are banned from the market, but they're putting it in this supplement and claiming it's one thing when it's really Viagra in there or something. People are just taking it and you have to be careful with drug interactions. And if you don't even know you're taking a drug because it's illegally in a supplement that's supposed to be ginkgo biloba, for example, and instead it's something else, you don't even know. 

Melanie Avalon: Is that the type of stuff they would like put the Viagra in? 

Gin Stephens: I don't have it off the top of my head. Ginkgo biloba is one that I talk about in Clean(ish), but it's been in all sorts of supplements, like maybe it's a weight loss supplement, and they claim that it's one thing, but really it's a prescription diet pill that's been pulled from the market, because it's got concerns, but instead they're putting it in this supplement and claiming it's one thing but it's really this other thing. 

Melanie Avalon: The research, I was reading a study on looking at melatonin supplements, it was shocking, because the episode that's airing this week is actually with Dr. John Lieurance about melatonin, but what it says melatonin wise, and then what it actually is, is there's a huge range. Just because there's no regulation on it, like if these were pharmaceuticals, they would be very tightly regulated. I think was Tim Spector. I had not thought about this before. It's a slight tangent, but related. He was pointing out the fact that if artificial sweeteners tasted bitter, not sweet, they probably would have been regulated like a drug rather than artificial sweeteners. Isn’t that interesting? 

Gin Stephens: What would their purpose have been? 

Melanie Avalon: I'm paraphrasing, but basically just the concept that if they presented differently as bitter. 

Gin Stephens: They wouldn't have been like, “Oh, here's the food additive.”  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they would have been more supplement or a drug or something, not artificial sweeteners that we just liberally throw on our food. I thought that was really interesting.  

Gin Stephens: We didn't even think about what it might be doing. We just like, “Oh, this is sweet. Let's try this.” 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I thought that was pretty interesting.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I'm very, very skeptical about supplements and that's why BiOptimizers, I trust them because they've made it for themselves. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Hopefully that helps, Liv, feel free to email us back or join us on one of the Facebook groups and share your story. We hope that things start flowing for you.  

Gin Stephens: Literally. 

Melanie Avalon: Literally. Okay, so we have a question from Kathy. The subject is, “Clean fast.” Kathy says, I'm on day 41 of 23:1, and I'm amazed that I've made it this far. I'm down 14 pounds, but I'm definitely not losing fast. I have at least 80 pounds to lose.” 

Gin Stephens: Oh, can I say something there about that? She's lost 0.34 pounds a day. So that is like amazingly fast. Down 14 pounds in 41 days is like astronomically fast, and you should not expect it to be that fast. Everybody needs to immediately change their expectations if you think that losing 0.34 pounds a day is not fast. 

Melanie Avalon: That is a really good point. It's so interesting, I feel people write into us a lot and have this same general idea. They say how much they're losing that it's not fast.  

Gin Stephens: People all the time do that. You're right. One of the things that people will say in the IF community and the Delay, Don't Deny, the main group, the groups that I used to run and the Social Network, they'll call themselves a turtle. That's just a cute little name for someone who loses slowly, then they'll talk about how much they're losing, and they're losing about a pound a week. That is not turtle. That is average, that is normal. We've got these expectations that we're supposed to lose a lot of weight really fast, or they're turtles, but a pound a week is not a turtle. It is not slow. If you're losing a half a pound a week, okay, that's more like a turtle. Anyway, I just had to throw that in there. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, reframe, listeners. Back to Kathy's question. She says, “I have at least 80 pounds to lose.” That's probably what it is, is probably she's just seeing all that she still has, and so it's not seeing the forest for the trees is that the phrase? 

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Yes, because it feels like so much. And then you go to the checkout counter and you see those magazines at the checkout counter that say, “Lose 100 pounds by Thanksgiving.” They say stuff like that crazy, stuff like that. And then you're like, “Well, I should be losing 100 pounds about Thanksgiving,” but you're not going to not a fat, anyway. 

Melanie Avalon: She says, “At the beginning, I was drinking chai tea, and my friend said it may not make my fast clean. I have since eliminated the tea. But would black chai tea wreck my efforts? I'm working my way through your podcast, I'm on 33 now, so many to listen to so little time.” 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, there are a lot to listen to. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Chai tea, black chai tea. 

Gin Stephens: That would be a no for the fast caffeine, I'm sorry about that, because the only things that are yes during the fast are plain water, black coffee, plain tea. If you add in anything with other flavors, your body's going to start to perceive that as a food, like flavor. Chai tea is delicious. It's got all those spices in there, it's comforting. It's so good. I used to put cinnamon in my coffee for years because it's so good, but that's not part of a clean fast. Delay the chai tea for your eating window. If you think of something, and your thought is, “Wow, that's delicious,” it's probably not a good part of the clean fast. So, I also want to say, Kathy, you're doing 23:1, I would like to encourage you to consider switching it up a little bit. Personally, I don't recommend 23:1 for most people as a long-term approach. And that is because our bodies do adapt to anything that's too consistent from day to day. And in a one hour eating window, it's difficult for your approach to not end up being overly restrictive over time. Even though fasting is protective of our metabolic rights in so many ways, if you over restrict long term, even with fasting, eventually, you're going to see that your body may plateau before you wanted it to. I would really think about switching up what you're doing.  

I have this explained a lot more in a lot more detail with the science behind it in Fast. Feast. Repeat. I talked about it in the introduction and also in the alternate daily fasting chapter. So, bear that in mind. I mean you've done great, you've lost a lot of weight in a very short time. If you see that you're plateauing, and also in Fast. Feast. Repeat. I encourage you to weigh daily and then track your how your average is doing, what your trend is doing, either through an app or through weekly averaging. If you notice that your trend plateaus, you're no longer going down on your weekly average or overall trend. That's when you know that your body probably wants you to switch things up.  

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. I knew that this was a Gin question. 

Gin Stephens: It totally was a Gin question. [laughs]  

Today's episode is sponsored by Green Chef, the number one meal kit for eating well. You probably already know how much I love Green Chef. Even though I'm retired from teaching, I seem to be busier than ever, with a new book coming out and three podcasts each week. I need meals that are delicious, nutritious, and quick and easy. The good news is that Green Chef meets all of those criteria and the meals are definitely window worthy.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes. This is from Christie. Christie says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. Love the podcast and especially the two of you, you balance each other really well and I love the story of how you met. I've learned so much from you too and I thank you for guiding me down this IF lifestyle, which I absolutely love. I recently went on vacation to Hawaii for a couple of weeks, and had very long windows with my family. I couldn't wait to get back to my one meal a day life. This just feels so natural to me. Thank you for introducing me to it and teaching me. Now to my question. I was drinking my coffee listening to the podcast the other day. And Gin was saying not to drink coffee before a fasting insulin test because it prompts your liver to dumb glycogen and can mess with the results. That got me thinking. Is there an optimal time in the fast like a minimum number of hours before or after you close your window when you should have coffee? I typically fast at least 20 hours, but I have my coffee at around the 12th hour. Would it be better if I pushed it a little longer, does that matter? Thank you in advance. Christie.”  

Melanie Avalon: I'm actually interestingly going to answer your question from a slightly different perspective. I know you're asking about it for liver glycogen dumping. I don't really know that that would be the thing to focus on with a coffee. I actually am interviewing Dr. Michael Breus this week who wrote The Power of When about the different chronotypes. And he has a new book coming out called Energize!, which is about the sleep chronotypes paired with actually body types. He actually talks a lot about drinking coffee and caffeine from a circadian rhythm perspective based on your personal chronotype. I thought I would share that information because I thought it was really interesting. There are basically four chronotypes and you can figure out which one you are by-- he has a quiz on his website, we can put a link to in the show notes or you can read his book or you can try to figure it out from what I say.  

Basically, there are dolphins, which is me, those are resident insomniacs They stay up late and have trouble sleeping and all of those things. There are lions, like Gin, who get up early and fall asleep early. There are bears which are the majority of the population. So, that's what social norms are basically based around. I think around 50% of people are bears. And then there are wolves that naturally wake up late and naturally stay up late. They often think that they're insomniacs, like dolphins, but it's probably just because their natural rhythm doesn't align with society's natural rhythm. So, they think it's insomnia. But really, it's just their natural rhythm, compared to dolphins where it literally is insomnia. In any case, his thoughts on caffeine and coffee, so he actually thinks that you should not have coffee right when you wake up because you naturally have a cortisol spike anyways right then. In a way, there's not really a point to it, and it's not doing what you want it to be doing, which is giving you energy when you are naturally at a lull. He believes that you should have coffee or caffeine about two hours after waking up.  

And then by the individual chronotypes, dolphins, the insomniacs, he thinks that you should have your coffee or caffeine, only six ounces no more. Not right upon waking, but, well, he doesn't really talk about fasting, but he says with a meal before 3:00 PM, never after 3:00 PM, the ideal window is between 1:00 to 2:00. Lions like Gin, I'm curious if this would match up with you, Gin. He thinks they should have caffeine between 8:00 to 11:00 in the morning, and then if they need it for an afternoon pick me up between 2:00 and 4:00. Bears between 9:30 and 11:30 or for pick me up between 1:30 and 3:30. Wolves, only between 12:00 and 2:00 and nothing after 2:00. Definitely not six hours before bed. So that's just his thoughts looking at the different chronotypes. If one of those chronotypes really resonates with you and those hours sort of resonate with you, that could be something that you could try out. She's talking about a minimum hours before, after you close your window. I wouldn't do it based on your window. I would do it based on your sleep. Definitely not six hours before bed. That's how I would play with that. What are your thoughts, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Well, this is just like what I say for everything really. The best time to have coffee is just like the best time to exercise in the best time to have your eating window. It's when it feels right to you. I wake up in the morning I'm not drinking coffee. When you were talking about that, like drinking it for a pick me up kind of thing, I was like, “Well, is that why I'm drinking it? No, I don't need a morning pick me up.” I drink it because I like it. I don't need an afternoon pick me up and I don't need a morning pick me up. I could drink one cup and I could drink five cups and I don't feel different. I'm a fast caffeine metabolizer also, so I don't know if that's a factor there. I probably, just like you, Christie, I'm probably around the 12th hour of my fast when I'm having black coffee too. I just have it. No big deal. That hasn't affected me negatively that I know of. Even though I had black coffee before I went and had my fasted bloodwork because I didn't think about it. My insulin levels were still low, they were still below five. I would like to have that done again, without having coffee just to see. So, it's not affecting my insulin levels to the point that they're high. It's just the time that feels right to me. And I'm a fast caffeine metabolizer and that's when I want to have my coffee.  

I don't drink it all afternoon just because I do think it could interfere with my sleep if I had a late. I don't need an afternoon pick me up because I'm deep in the fasted state by then. Now I will say I used to need an afternoon pick me up before I was a faster, I always had afternoon coffee and I don't feel like it affected my sleep then. But drink your coffee when you want to drink your coffee, Christie. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I would focus more on its relationship to your sleep than all of this.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. If you feel like it's giving you negative effects, tweak when you're having it or if you're having it. We just had a conversation in the Social Network the other day. I think it was in the 28 Day Fast Start group. Someone was asking about coffee. She feels like it breaks her fast. She's like, “What do I do?” I'm like, “Well, then just experiment without it.” That's really the only thing you can do. We're all so different, if you feel like it's causing you a problem, you've got to be your own study of one.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, exactly. All right. We have a question from Melody. The subject is “Crossroad on my IF journey.” Melody says, “Okay, guys, I am at a huge crossroads in my IF journey and I need some advice. I have been IFing for the last six months and I absolutely 100% know, this is my forever lifestyle. I love the feeling, I'm finally losing weight, I have more energy and it is just so easy. I am down to one meal a day and that is working great for me most days. The only problem is mommy guilt. Right now, my one meal a day has to be around 2:00 to 3:00. I have tried to push it further because I feel like I need to eat with my family. For that is the time my body says it's time to eat. I've tried eating just a snack to tide me over until dinner which is usually around 6:00, but it's hopeless. I just end up eating a meal full of snacks and then out of guilt, I eat a little dinner with my family even though I'm not hungry.  

Another problem is that IF has changed my cravings in a good way. I want more fresh fruits and veggies, lean meats, like fish and chicken. I want to try Buddha bowls and just eat more healthy all around. I am even for the first time in my life not really wanting pasta all the time. This, by the way, is all the stuff my hubby and 13-year-old son hate. They just want to grill some meat, have some sort of starchy side and maybe if forced a veggie. I just don't want that anymore. I want real flavors. I'm seriously considering giving up eating with my family to enjoy the foods I want and to put my health first. But it makes me feel like a bad mom and wife. I feel so selfish even thinking about this.”  

Gin Stephens: All right, Melody, you're going to get some Gin tough love here. You are absolutely not selfish to take care of yourself and your needs. Sheri and I, in the Life Lessons podcast had an episode called “Self-Care Isn't Selfish.” When you're on an airplane and you're traveling with someone, like maybe a child, and there's a problem and the oxygen masks come down, what do they tell you to do? Put the oxygen mask on yourself first, and then help the people around you. So, I want you to think of it this way. If you can't take care of yourself, you're not going to be able to be a good wife and mom. They don't care what you're eating, they care that you're with them. What I would do is, I would just sit with them while they eat and visit with them. They care about you, not your plate. If they do say to you, anything like trying to be negative about the fact that you're not eating, that’s when you need to just really advocate for yourself and say, “No, I'm here because I want to be with you. I ate earlier.” Just be confident about that. Don't feel like you have to eat the food that they're eating or eat at the same time that they're eating. That's really all I have to say about that. 

Melanie Avalon: I have two thoughts. For the first one about the timing, and being hungry earlier versus later, I wonder if she's actually tried and stuck it out having that later window without trying to make it easier with a snack.  

Gin Stephens: She said she couldn't. Yeah, she said she's tried to push it further, because she said that because I felt like I need to eat with my family. But that is the time my body says it's time to eat. You just wonder if she's really given it time.  

Melanie Avalon: Because she says she's tried eating just a snack to tide her over, hormones related to when we get hungry, adapt based on what we're doing. I just wonder if maybe she thought it was hard and maybe tried it a day or two and then tried with a snack to make it easier. But really, the snack would not allow that hormonal reprogramming to happen. One thing you could try, if you haven't tried it, is like a week of eating with your family. Pushing it back just those few extra hours without a snack to try to tide you over and just see if that happens and just see what you learn. Yeah, you still get hungry earlier or it may be that you actually can change your eating window, which would address that eating window question just like from a time perspective.  

From the perspective about eating, I love, love, love what Gin said. 100% that you are not obligated to change your own personal health decisions and what you're doing for other people. I think there's a lot of brainstorming you could do because I'm assuming that you are the one making the meals for the family. I think there's a lot of brainstorming you could do about making an inclusive meal. So, you like lean meats, like fish and chicken and they grilling meat, you could have lean meat that is grilled that both of you guys could have starchy sides, and maybe a force of veggie, like is there the option A to maybe do a starchy side that you like as well that's a veggie. I don't know what type of veggies you do, but like sweet potatoes or something like that? Or, could you do two sides and have like a starchy side for them and then a veggie that they might pick at what you would eat the large portion of. Can you make these meals that's kind of like a mix and match approach where everybody can find something that they like? I think that that could be a possibility. But ultimately, you're not being selfish, you're not being a bad mom and wife, if anything, this is just my opinion. But if anything, I think creating delicious, healthy meals that are possibly potentially going to be more health supporting and their composition, if anything, I think that is-- it'd be super selfless and amazing to try to create meals that are potentially more health promoting than what you've been creating and put in the time and effort to find a way to make them really delicious. That shows dedication and love that you want to provide your family with the most healthy food and most nourishing food and you want to do it in a way that they really enjoy. I think that you could change this whole thing from a selfish perspective to a labor of love. That makes everybody happy.  

Gin Stephens: Yep, so many options but definitely don't feel guilty. Never feel guilty for taking care of your needs when it comes to feeding your body nutritious food that makes you feel great. You should feel guilty if you're forcing yourself to eat food you don't want at a time you don't want to eat it. That's where the guilt-- [laughs] like, “Why am I not letting myself do what I want to do?” Anyway. 

Melanie Avalon: 100%. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions to the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast, I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens. If you've been following me, you would have heard my story about the Whole Foods guy. And, yeah, I think that is all of the things. Anything from you, Gin, before we go? 

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

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

Gin Stephens: All right, 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! 

 

 

Oct 03

Episode 233: Melanie’s Zoe Experience, Glucose Highs & Lows, Amenorrhea, Fasting & Menstruation, Lethargy After Eating, Chronotypes, High Cholesterol, Prediabetes, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 233 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 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To magbreakthrough.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! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

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26:05 - PREP DISH: Get A Free 2 Week Trial With The Paleo, Keto, And SUPER Fast Menus (Plus More!) At prepdish.com/ifpodcast!

28:00 - Listener Q&A: Melanie - Fasted Blood Donation

29:40 - Listener Q&A: Jess - Where's My Period?

Women and Fasting: Does Fasting Affect Your Cycle?

35:55 - Listener Q&A: Kim - Lethargic After Breaking Fast

The Power of When: Discover Your Chronotype - and the Best Time to Eat Lunch, Ask for a Raise, Have Sex, Write a Novel, Take Your Meds, and More (Michael Breus)

Chronotype Quiz

44:25 - MOLEKULE: For A Limited Time Go To molekule.com And Use The Code Ifpodcast120 At Checkout To Save Up To $120!

46:55 - Listener Q&A: Megan - Question For A Friend Who Is At A Healthy Weight But Has High Cholesterol And Is Pre-Diabetic

Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Health, Aging, and Disease

Clinical Management of Intermittent Fasting in Patients with Diabetes Mellitus

Stay Up To Date With All The News And Pre-Order Info About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 233 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

Hi, friends. I am a huge proponent of getting our nutrition from food. When all else fails, I feel food is the way to go. That said, there are some nutrients that are super hard to get in today's environment. Did you know that 80% of the population is deficient in magnesium? Our soils are so depleted of magnesium today, that it's really, really hard to get enough of this crucial mineral. It's actually the number one mineral to fight stress, fatigue, and sleep issues. I've been doing a lot of research on minerals, especially the calcium-magnesium balance, and I walk away from so many conversations I have with experts just realizing more and more how important magnesium is. I personally love magnesium for its stress-reducing effects, as well as helping with my digestive issues. Yes, magnesium is the single most-studied mineral in existence. It actually powers over 600 critical reactions in our bodies.

Did you know that there are multiple types of magnesium? That's why I am so excited to share with you the magnesium product that I discovered. It's called Magnesium Breakthrough by BiOptimizers, and it combines all seven essential forms of magnesium into one convenient supplement. Most magnesium supplements actually fail, because they are synthetic and are not full spectrum. When you get all seven critical forms of magnesium, pretty much every function in your body gets upgraded, from your brain to your sleep, pain, and inflammation and less stress. With this one simple action, you can help reverse your magnesium deficiency and all of its forms. This is by far the most complete magnesium product ever created, and until or unless someone comes out with a better one, I highly recommend you give it a try. I can't tell you how many times I get feedback in my Facebook group, IF Biohackers, about people who have truly benefited so much from Magnesium Breakthrough.

We have a special offer just for our listeners, you can get 10% off Magnesium Breakthrough if you go to magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast and enter the code, IFPODCAST10. That's M-A-G-B-R-E-A-K-T-H-R-O-U-G-H forward slash I-F-P-O-D-C-A-S-T with the coupon code, IFPODCAST10. Once again, that's magbreakthrough.com/ifpodcast with the coupon code, IFPODCAST10. By the way, that coupon code is good for 10% off any order. So, definitely take a look around the BiOptimizers website for other supplements that might benefit your health. I'll put all this information in the show notes.

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare and makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body.

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

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

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 233 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: Doing great. How about you? [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I'm good. I have ZOE updates.

Gin Stephens: Very cool. I've also been just wearing the-- What is it?

Melanie Avalon: CGM?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the CGM from, I was trying to think of the company--

Melanie Avalon: Levels.



Gin Stephens: Levels. Yeah, I couldn't think of Levels. I could think of a CGM, but I couldn't think of Levels. I've been wearing the CGM from Levels. Man, it's so interesting.

Melanie Avalon: What have you learned? What have you found?

Gin Stephens: Well, I can absolutely feel when my blood sugar goes down during the fast.

Melanie Avalon: Crashes.

Gin Stephens: Not crashes. I wouldn't call it crashing. It doesn't ever feel like it crashes but I can absolutely feel when my blood sugar gets down into the 70s. I wake up in the morning, I drink my coffee, my blood sugar sticks around in a certain range. And then around 1 to 2 o'clock, I have a wave of hunger. And that is exactly when my blood sugar goes down into the 70s.

Melanie Avalon: That's interesting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. It's not hunger that's shaky hunger. It's really easy to ignore. Any intermittent faster are out there has felt that before, but I just ignore it. And then, for the entire rest of the time that I'm fasting, I stay very solidly in the 70s. It doesn't go up and down a lot after I get that shift. It's like I can feel the metabolic switch, and then my body is just well fueled, and my blood sugar stays very constant. It's fascinating.

When I did ZOE, I had longer windows, the muffin day and all of that. Also, I was using the little-- it was different versus the way Levels does with syncing with your phone. It wasn't as easy to really see the data when I did ZOE. But with Levels, it's just been fascinating. I can just go in the fasted state and stick right there in the 70s.

And then, it's also fascinating to see what I eat, and how my blood glucose responds. One night I opened with-- Well, it was higher carb, but low fat. I ended up just-- I didn’t mean to, it just happened to be the meal that I had that night, ended up being a very high carb, low fat, not a lot of protein. My blood sugar went crazy. It went up so high. I can't remember the exact number, but the spike was like oop. As long as I eat a mixed meal, fat, carbs, protein, it's steady. I have a biphasic response, which I read on Levels is a good thing. One little raise, then down, then up and down again. But fascinating. I've got to have sufficient protein and fat along with carbs to keep it steady. I knew that, but it's good to see it.

Melanie Avalon: Is this your first time wearing it with Levels, like a company that lets you see it all?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: So, now you understand my obsession?

Gin Stephens: Well, and then I actually took it off [laughs] because I was like, “Alright, that's enough.” I took it off. I didn't need to see it for long.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, how long?

Gin Stephens: I don't know. Not that long, but it was enough. A week maybe, it was enough for me to really see. I'm so in tune with how I feel that none of it surprised me, but it was so interesting to see it.

Melanie Avalon: Another question. Do you see the intense morning spike?

Gin Stephens: I wouldn't call it intense. No.

Melanie Avalon: Just because I know we get a lot of questions from listeners about high morning blood sugar and when I wear mine, mine spike's to about 120.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, mind doesn't do that. Oh gosh, no. I never get out of the 90s until after my windows open.

Melanie Avalon: Interesting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm always in the-- overnight, it does different things. And that was one reason I took it off just from the sleeping and I also was getting a massage the next day. I was like, “A massage therapist is going to have to work around this,” because I got a massage when I was wearing it for ZOE and she couldn't really work on that arm very well. So, I took it off. I mean, it was not a big deal. I learned what I needed to learn, basically. But, yeah, my blood glucose stays around in the 90s all throughout the morning with my coffee. Down into the 80s some, up into the 90s. But it never went over 100, unless it was right after I'd just eaten.

Melanie Avalon: Mine goes up every morning, but then it goes down consistently. What's interesting is I'm the exact opposite of you. I feel hungry when I get those spikes, and then when it starts going down is when my hunger kind of goes down.

Gin Stephens: Well, I get the hunger, I think, right when it hits the down, and then the hunger wave is gone and it stays down. It's just fascinating to see. Again, I learned from ZOE that I don't have a great blood glucose response to too much blood glucose at one time, which I proved with that meal. The ZOE data, when I would get scores for the meals, the ones that gave me a good score were the ones that were a combination of carbs with sufficient fat.

Melanie Avalon: And my comment about that, I'm just so excited about all of this, just for listeners, I think an important takeaway, because they might hear that and think that for them, that's what would work best but we're all different. For me, I'm the best when I do high carb, low fat, but if I combine, then it does not do well on my CGM.

Gin Stephens: If you have high carb, low fat, your blood sugar is great?

Melanie Avalon: If I do high carb, low fat, it spikes after the meal which is anticipated normal.

Gin Stephens: How much does it spike?

Melanie Avalon: It really depends on the night, but before eating, it'll be in the 80s. And then a low spike, it might be like 120 or a high spike it might go to 140.

Gin Stephens: Okay, see, mine went to 172. That day, I had low fat by accident, and I didn't realize that till I went back and looked at the meal. It was rice and dates and carrots and kale. I didn't add anything to it. It didn't have any beans, it didn't have very much fat at all. My blood sugar went berserk. But even the next night, I had a blueberry biscuit. It was not the least but low carb or low fat and my blood sugar was beautiful. It's fascinating. Now with ZOE, I learned that I can't have too much fat, that backs up to, I don't clear fat quickly. So really, for me, I should not over consume. If I eat too much food, that was when my ZOE score would go down using their data. I would have a beautiful meal that would score in the 90s. And then, if I ate too much again too soon with too much fat, it would plummet my score.

Melanie Avalon: Well, you know what's interesting, I don't know if that would be the case if I did high carb low fat with starches. The times it has spiked, I had starches in it. The carbs I'm eating are all from fruit. But, yeah, it doesn't really go over 140 and then it goes down and then it stays down.

Gin Stephens: Mine were very starchy. But when I had very starchy carbs the other days with plenty of fat and also protein, I didn't have that huge spike.

Melanie Avalon: The thing I learned last night, I was actually thinking about it this morning looking at the CGM was, I usually drink a glass of wine every night, but if I drink more wine-- last night, I had a wine night with a friend on the phone and it was four hours. We drink a lot of wine over four hours. My blood sugar response is so much better if I have a big alcohol preload, and my theory is that it just completely depletes glycogen. That's my theory. There's been studies on wine and insulin sensitivity, so probably helps with that. But, yeah, probably my best blood sugar response is when I have more than a glass of wine before eating.

Gin Stephens: That's fascinating. It just shows we're so different. The next day, other than that one day where my blood sugar went crazy after the low fat, high carb meal, I would not say any of my meals were low carb at all like I said, and I had rice again, it wasn't like that's the only time I had rice. For me, it really seems to be that combination of the carbs, plus the fat, plus the protein keep me steady, and it makes sense when you think about how it flows, how it gets into your bloodstream, flows digestion.

Melanie Avalon: Gin, I haven't done the second day of muffins yet.

Gin Stephens: You're supposed to do on the next day.

Melanie Avalon: You don't have to. I've been chatting with the help people.

Gin Stephens: Okay. All right.

Melanie Avalon: I think it'll be more telling if I don't do them back-to-back. For listeners who are not familiar, ZOE is a program, scientific study.

Gin Stephens: It really is. It's a study, program, all of that.

Melanie Avalon: Because I've been making posts about it. I'm like, “What do I call it?” It's an experience, where you learn about yourself. In any case, it is created by Tim Spector. He's a professor of genetic epidemiology, but he's an expert in personalized medicine and the gut microbiome. And they also have doctors as well creating the program. Basically, what happens is you get these special created muffins that feature different calorie and macronutrient breakdowns, and you eat them and you do a certain amount of fasting after eating them. If you're in the study portion of it, which is optional, you're wearing a CGM, either way you do a finger prick blood test. And it evaluates how you process carbs and fat, and you also do a gut microbiome stool sample, which is really cool, but it's just so funny because-- and Gin already knows this, oh, my gosh, the muffin. So, people talk about the muffins how they don't taste very good. I was looking at the ingredients before taking it and I was like this is just going to light up every dopamine center in my brain. I just know it. And literally, it was like the most amazing thing I've ever tasted.

Gin Stephens: I've never heard anyone say that about the muffins, like ever, which is hilarious.

Melanie Avalon: I've been asking on my Facebook group, and there have been a few people like me, and it's all people who are really intense and don't eat processed foods ever. The birds were singing, I was like, “This feels like cocaine.” I mean, I don't know what cocaine feels like.

Gin Stephens: I was like, “This is disgusting.” I was so excited to have muffins, and these taste so bad. These are the most disappointing muffins. I guess that's the key that you have not had anything like that whereas I'm not interested in any of that because I want a good muffin.

Melanie Avalon: I did a poll on my Facebook group, and it was pretty clear. If you eat processed foods even just a little bit, then you're more likely to not like the muffins. If you don't eat processed foods, you're more likely to like the muffins. But then, the funny thing and this was so interesting, and I learned so much about it about myself and fasting, was you have to fast after the first set of muffins for four hours. Gin and I, we fast every single day. Those four hours were so difficult. Having fasting right after eating something that crashes your blood sugar is so hard.

Gin Stephens: That was the hardest part for me, too, the time in between, muffin meal one and it was muffin meal two. We had muffins again, yeah, that was the hardest of all, because I'm not used to being hungry in my eating window. Once I open my eating window, if I'm hungry, I eat something. I would never open my eating window if it was something weird, and then fight through terrible hunger for four hours.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It gave me so much empathy, because I think I forget-- because we get so many questions about people who are really nervous about starting fasting, and they think they're going to be miserably hungry, and it's just nice to remember, oh, this is the baseline that they're probably coming from. They're used to eating and then it being really, really hard to fast. If they're thinking fasting is like that, fasting would be really miserable. It definitely took me back to my pre-fasting days and made me so grateful that I am not living like that, from blood sugar swing to blood sugar swing. And then, you're supposed to do a second day but I was like, “I can't do these two days in a row.” They said I could do it a different day, and I do think that'll be more telling because it'll give me more time to really be at baseline. I'll be coming from my true self with my blood sugar response, I think. But interviewing Tim was amazing.

Gin Stephens: You see why I love him so much.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. He was so intelligent and kind and very nuanced. I asked him a lot of questions because a lot of our audience is low carb or keto. We've been getting some feedback that sometimes people don't tolerate fat so well. So, the impression that might be given from the app is that they need to go low fat, which makes sense. But I've been thinking that maybe if they don't process fats, well, ironically, that low carb might be a better approach, which would ironically be high fat. I was able to talk to him about all of that. He agreed, and he said that basically right now the way it's set up-- he said ideally he wants to have another arm of it that is tailored towards keto people, because I also asked about the false-- I don't know if we have false positive or false negative. People who are doing a low carb diet, when they do the muffins, they might have a temporary insulin resistance that is created from having been low carb, which is temporary, but I think that could skew the results. He was saying that they've been thinking about that and do they need to tell people who are doing low carb to do a few days before of higher carbs? Or should they have an arm of it that's low carb? It was a really, really nice discussion, and I walked away from it--

Before, I was a little bit-- I don't know if I was skeptical, but I was curious about things I've been hearing from my audience but now I feel pretty good. I'm really encouraging listeners to do it because he says they really need to get a lot of people to do it so that they can continue to learn and then in the future, maybe expand it to do things like that.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. That's why I'm such a fan of him. Just when you read his books, which you've read them, when you read his books, you realize, “Okay, this guy's impressive.” And then you see the work they're doing with the PREDICT studies, and you're like, “Okay, this is amazing,” and it's new, and then they're changing. What you're going through is a little different than when I did it whenever that was last year. They're constantly evolving, which science is supposed to do, that's what scientists do. But you said that you felt it was steering people towards low fat, mine absolutely did not steer me towards low fat. I got higher scores when I combined carbs and fat, but it was just if I kept eating more fat, then the score would go down. It was when I overdid the fat. If I had, I don't know, let's just say a piece of whole grain toast, my score would be low. But if I put an egg on top and some avocado, my score would go up, and it would be higher. You haven't gotten to that point yet.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I'm just going off of what people have said in my group and I haven't received any information yet. So, I can't really speak. I don't know what it looks like the scores.

Gin Stephens: It absolutely did not steer me to low fat. But it did, because my scores would go up as I would add fat, but then there would come a point that it was too much fat and the score would go down.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really curious to see what mine is. And also, oh my gosh, the blood finger prick.

Gin Stephens: That was intense.

Melanie Avalon: I prick my finger all the time, because I check my blood glucose with a glucometer often. So, I was thinking the lancet was-- I was thinking it was like the one I normally use, which is like a really, really tiny prick.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I told you it was different.

Melanie Avalon: You had said it was hard for you, and I'd asked in my group and people had said it was difficult. I was like, “Well, I better just really jab this thing into my finger.” And I didn't realize it's a different lancet that is made to get a lot of blood out. I mean, blood was spewing everywhere. I was like, “What if I faint?” [laughs] For a second, I literally was like, “What if it just keeps bleeding?”

Gin Stephens: So, you really went for it?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, it was not a problem filling that card.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I was like squeezing, squeezing, squeezing, trying to get it all out. But I did, but it was not flowing.

Melanie Avalon: I was doing it at 2 AM. [laughs] So, yeah, it's been a really cool experience. The feedback has been mixed, for sure, in my group, but a lot of people have said that it's been interestingly game changing for them to lose weight.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I've heard that too. I interviewed someone for Intermittent Fasting Stories, who shares her story. I don't know when her episode comes out, Christie Osborne, but it was game changing for her. It's just a matter of, not everyone likes what they find out. I've also heard that people were mad about what they found out. I'm like, “Well you can't be mad that you don't like what you learn.” I don't like to know that my body doesn't clear glucose quickly or fat quickly. I'm not thrilled, but it's not their fault. They just shared that with me, or whatever is in my gut microbiome, knowledge is power and once you know, then you're equipped to deal with it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Day two of muffins, I'm doing Tuesday.

Gin Stephens: Well, enjoy.

Melanie Avalon: Thank you.

Gin Stephens: I don’t know if y'all can hear somebody out is outside doing like a weed eat or blower, so if you hear something that sounds like equipment, that's what it is.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I can't hear it.

Gin Stephens: Good. It's the weekend and neighbors are doing their yard work. Or it could be Chad, I don't know. Someone's out there doing yard work.

Melanie Avalon: It sounds good.

Gin Stephens: Okay, good.

Melanie Avalon: And then one last thing, just a quick announcement for listeners. Well, I'm going to be interviewing Robb Wolf on this show. I am so excited. You guys know I'm such a Robb Wolf fan girl. So, this will be my third time interviewing him, which is very nice. He is the force behind The Paleo Solution, which is the reason that I started the paleo diet. He also wrote Wired to Eat, which appropriately enough is about people's individual blood sugar response to carbs. That's the main thing it's about. And then he wrote Sacred Cow about regenerative agriculture. And he's also one of the creators of LMNT electrolytes, which we talked about all the time on the show, which our listeners love. By the way, you can get a free sample pack at drinklmnt.com. That's LMNT dotcom slash ifpodcast.

He's going to come on the show, and I'm trying to decide if I'm going to make it just me interviewing him. But I think I'd like to include listener questions. So, if you have any questions about electrolytes while fasting, now is the time, email those. Also, if you want to ask him anything else, feel free to email as well.

Gin Stephens: Do it quickly because you only have like a week before-- and I'm actually not going to be on that interview. I've got something going on that day. And also, it's so much easier to interview with one person instead of two people trying to interfere. So, Melanie's going to handle that one without me, but get the questions in.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Email them right now. Anything fasting, electrolytes, regenerative agriculture, or if you just want to ask Robb something.

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about Prep Dish and what they have going on for you this summer. Summer is my favorite season, and I'm sure that you've heard me say that before. But one thing about summer is that we are busy. That's why I'm so excited to tell you about the free Bonus Menu Prep Dish is offering this month, and it's only good through the end of June. If you're a regular listener, I'm sure you're familiar with their new Super Fast Menus. If you thought prepping five healthy dinners in just an hour was the best it could get somehow, they're upping their game. Just for the month of June, Prep Dish is offering all new subscribers a free bonus menu. It's not just your average meal plan though. It's designed to let you prep five healthy dinners in just 30 minutes. It seriously doesn't get any easier than that.

Don't worry, just because the meals come together quickly, that doesn't mean you'll be missing out on flavor. The Bonus Menu includes things like California burgers with berry salad, shrimp tostadas, and a slow cooker Italian pork. When you subscribe, you'll have access to the gluten-free, paleo, keto and the Super Fast menu, in addition to the Bonus Menu. If you're still not convinced, remember that you get a two-week free trial if you go to prepdish.com/ifpodcast so you can try the meals out yourself before you commit. Again, that's prepdish.com/ifpodcast for two weeks free, and for the month of June anyone who signs up gets the fastest meal plan ever bonus. Now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Shall we go to some of our listener questions?

Gin Stephens: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: The first thing is actually some listener feedback, and it comes from another Melanie. Oh, my goodness. The subject is “Fasted blood donation,” and Melanie says, “Hey, ladies, I am a regular podcast listener to all of your shows. Thank you for all of your very useful information and easy to apply tips and tricks. I was just listening to Episode 229, and the question came up about blood donating fasted. I'm an RN and a hematology-oncology clinic. We give lots of patients lots of blood. Thank you to all of those wanting to and able to donate blood. Since COVID, there has been a sharp decrease in the blood supply and every unit helps.

I've been an intermittent faster for four years and I've been donating blood for many years. I've never had any issues with donating, so I donate fasted. I do drink a large amount of water throughout the day to keep from getting dehydrated, and therefore preventing low blood pressure. I also make sure to eat a very good meal when my regularly scheduled window opens. All that being said, that is what works for me. I would not recommend a new intermittent faster donate fasted or a new donor to donate fasted. I hope this helps and maybe it will encourage others to donate blood even if it means they open their windows a little early. Happy fasting, Melanie."

Gin Stephens: Awesome. It's always good to hear straight from the expert.

Melanie Avalon: I really liked what Melanie said. We didn't really touch on this last time about how appreciated it is for people to donate blood. But it sounds like if you're new to donating blood, probably don't do it fasted the first time, maybe do it at least once not fasted. I would just faint either way. Shall we go into our questions?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. We have a question from Jess. The subject is, “Where's my period?” Jess says, “Hello, ladies. I recently discovered your podcast and binged three episodes in one go on a long walk. I love it. Thank you for all you do. I started IF at the end of last year and followed a 16:8 rhythm for about six months. I would eat breakfast at 10:00, lunch around midday and dinner at 6:00. This worked really well for me. I lost weight, felt healthy, had so much more free time in the evenings and never felt hungry. About a month ago, I decided to try extending my fast to 18 hours and now eat two meals a day at around midday and between 6:00 to 7:00 PM. I've continued to see results and feel good. A little hungry in the run up to lunch, but I'm getting used to it.

This month, my period arrived on time, but it was extremely light and then gone the next day. I haven't changed anything else in my routine. My diet is the same, usual amount of exercise and sleep. I have suffered with PCOS for around six years. But since coming off the pill two years and two months ago, I've actually still had a regular cycle, my period is always between four and seven days. I've told myself to chill because it's only one month and I might be back to normal next month. But I am worried because I'm hoping to start a family next year and don't want to be causing any unseen damage. After a bit of googling, I've seen a few articles linking disrupted menstruation with IF, and wondered if you had any insights. The two might not be linked at all, it's just that the extension of my fast is the only change I've made recently. I consider my diet to be healthy, I would label it as low carb, high fat and mostly organic. Hope you can help, and thanks again for your wonderful work. I don't use Facebook. So, I'm unable to join your groups. However, I'm now a very happy subscriber of the podcast and look forward to going back through the library of episodes. Jess.”

Gin Stephens: Jess, thank you for asking that question. You're right. You can find a lot of stuff when you're googling that talks about disrupting menstruation with women. I think it's really key to keep in mind that we know that over-restrictive dieting in general affects women's cycles. Are there women who do intermittent fasting in an overly restricted way? Yes. Would that be likely to lead to menstrual disruptions? Yes. It doesn't sound like you are doing an overly restrictive approach however, because 18 hours is really not extensive. Now, if you had just gone to 23:1 and you eating a one-hour window, that might be a too much restriction. But it sounds like you're eating two meals a day in an 18-hour fast with a 6-hour eating window, I would not think that you're overly restrictive. You haven't missed a period, so I wouldn't be too worried right now. If you start missing periods, then I would go see your doctors, get your hormones checked out, see what's going on with that because it's hard for us to know. I mean, maybe you're eating two really tiny meals. I don't know, for me a meal is substantial. I know it is for Melanie as well.

There's a great article, but it's a blog post that I want you to look for. If you google "women and fasting, does fasting affect your cycle," it's on The Fasting Method website. It talks about the experiences that they've had with women, and it's actually was written by Megan Ramos, although for some reason at the top, it says by Jason Fung, but this is clearly written by Megan Ramos. That says like, “Many of the women I've worked with, I was scared to fast at first without knowing how it affected my fertility.” It's clearly Megan Ramos wrote it even though it says Jason Fung at the top. Look for women and fasting, does fasting affect your cycle, and read that and see what Megan Ramos says about it, because they've worked with a lot of women in their practice. Spoiler alert, they find that often, at first, they'll see disruptions and then they'll find that women's cycles are actually more regular than they had been before. Again though, you're a study of one, so you'll only know by seeing what happens for you. It could be a coincidence. Going from 16 to 18 is not a big change. I would be really shocked that you've gone to over-restriction just with the two-hour increase in your fast. What do you think, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I thought that was great. For listeners, we will put a link in the show notes to that article to make it easy to find, and the show notes are at ifpodcast.com/episode233. Yeah, I agree. I was going to say, it's hard to know, if it's just adjusting and changing, or if it's a sign that it actually is going away. I would give it a few more months and see what happens. And if it does go away-- I mean, it sounds like you were really happy with your earlier approach because she said she was on a 16:8, worked really well, she lost weight, she felt healthy, she had free time, she never felt hungry. If it does turn out to be a thing where your period goes away, I see nothing wrong with going back to what you were doing, which sounded like it was working really well. If you're worried about not getting quite as many benefits because of those extra two hours, I really wouldn't sweat it. I would do the pattern that is really working for you. So, yeah, I like what Gin said.

Gin Stephens: It's too soon to really know. You didn't skip your period like you said, it was just really light. Since Jess says she wants to start a family, I assume she's nowhere near the perimenopausal phase, because that's when everything starts to go wacky no matter what you're doing. [laughs] But I don't think that would be applying to Jess, but anybody who's in their 40s and beyond, get ready. [laughs] It's a bumpy ride.

Melanie Avalon: Goodness.

Gin Stephens: You'll see, yep.

Melanie Avalon: Feel free to let us know, Jess.

Gin Stephens: Oh, definitely. I would love to have a follow-up on that.

Melanie Avalon: Me too.

Gin Stephens: All right, so we have an email from Kim and the subject is “Lethargic after breaking fast.” Kim says, “Hi, Melanie, and Gin. Thank you so much for this podcast. You are both truly inspiring. I've lost 74 pounds after doing IVF for about a year.” And I just want to stop and say, amazing, Kim. That's fabulous.

Melanie Avalon: How many pounds, like, every-- 365?

Gin Stephens: I mean, a pound a week is “average.” So, 52 would be more typical. 74 is amazing.

Melanie Avalon: Wow.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Kim goes on to say, “I am currently listening to Episode 84. So, I apologize if this question has been asked before. On occasion, I have noticed that if I break my fast a couple of hours early, I get completely lethargic like I desperately have to take a nap. I usually break my fast around 6:30 PM and close my window by 9:30 PM. However, I notice that if I broke my fast a couple of hours earlier, I get so tired. I, for the most part, eat whole foods and balance my meals with protein, vegetables, healthy fats and carbohydrates.” Me too, Kim, that sounds a lot like how I eat. “My question is what are some reasons as to why you would get so lethargic after breaking your fast. What are some ways to fix this? Thank you so much for what you do.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Kim, great question. We have answered things like this before, but what 233 episodes, I thought we haven't answered this in a while. Obviously, there could be a lot of potential things going on, but two things are coming to mind for me personally. One of the reasons I personally love having an evening eating window is it does make me tired. During the day, I'm awake, I'm alert, I'm active, and then when I eat, that's my wine downtime, and the actual eating process tends to be a parasympathetic state, it's called rest and digest for a reason. So, it can be completely normal to get tired after eating. I think a reason that you might find yourself getting tired earlier, when you break fast earlier, when maybe in the past before fasting you didn't experience that would be because it's possible that you have conditioned your body with intermittent fasting, because you do have an evening window. Now, the signaling that your body is used to, is when you eat, that's you're wind down, go to bed, get ready for bed time. So, it's like an association that your body has made. Now when you eat earlier, it gets that started. Whereas in the past before you had this evening eating window, your body was actually used to eating earlier and so it was used to not getting “tired.” They're called-- how do you say it, zeitgebers?

Gin Stephens: Oh, I don't know. I don't know that word.

Melanie Avalon: Zeitgebers, I think. It's a German word. It means cues to your-- it's like using your environment that signal things to your biology. The definition is a rhythmically occurring natural phenomenon, which acts as a cue in the regulation of the body's circadian rhythms. Food and eating are very, very powerful zeitgebers. Light is another one. Basically, what has happened, I think, is that you have made food into a zeitgeber that tells your body to wind down. And so, now when you eat earlier, that happens. Another potential option or explanation behind this, is I've actually been diving really deep into Dr. Michael Breus’s work. He wrote The Power of When. And he's the one who came up with the chronotypes, like the dolphin, the lion, the wolf, and the bear, because I'm going to be interviewing him which is very exciting.

Gin Stephens: Very cool.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm so excited. And he has a new book coming out called Energize! which actually talks about the chronotypes for sleep combined with your metabolism type, if you're a fast, medium, or slow metabolism, that's a pretty cool book. He talks about how different chronotypes get tired naturally with their circadian rhythm during different times of the day. If you are a bear chronotype, which is the most common chronotype, it's actually very normal to need an afternoon nap. What I think might happen-- and I don't know, Kim, if you're a bear, but I think what might happen for people who are bears, for example, they would be used to needing a nap during the middle of the afternoon and then normal eating pattern that would probably be after they ate, that's just me theorizing. But if they switch to an intermittent fasting pattern where they're eating later, now they're going to be stimulated during the day, and they're going to be alert, and they're going to probably not get as tired during that time when they naturally would have a dip because they're not having the meal or the snack that is encouraging that. So, it could be that you actually naturally were getting tired during that time. But now you only realize it when you have something that really powerfully stimulates it, like eating. But if you're curious, you can take his chronotype quiz on his website. We can put a link to it in the show notes and you can figure out what chronotype you are.

Something I love about it is, I'm a dolphin, which is the resident insomniac, and dolphins are never supposed to take naps, which is what I've always said. If I take a nap, I just feel like I'll never sleep again. And he says so many times, he's like, “Dolphins do not take naps, not allowed to take naps.” I love that.

As far as suggestions for how to fix it. I actually don't really have a suggestion. My biggest suggestion would be when you have that earlier meal, are you having a huge meal? Are you normally having a huge meal between 6:30 and 9:30, which you probably are, if you're only eating for three hours every day. So, if you have to eat earlier, you might be able to mitigate that by not having that earlier meal is huge. Different foods might make you feel a certain way. Like for me, like protein makes me feel tired. It's more to digest. If I were to have a lighter meal, like if I were to have a lighter salad early in the day, I probably would not get super tired compared to if I ate my normal meal of pounds of meat, I would probably get tired. Yeah, that was a lot of thoughts. Gin, what are your thoughts?

Gin Stephens: I just had to look back in my email to remember what I was. I'm a lion. Is that what we decided that I was?

Melanie Avalon: You are 100% a lion.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm so much a lion.

Melanie Avalon: You're such a lion.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] Yeah, I'm a lion. I thought that was interesting. That was interesting thought to think that might be related to her chronotype. So, yeah, because it doesn't seem like she's just tired at 6:30 when she eats as if she eats earlier. Fascinating. Yeah, I think you said it all, honestly. As you mentioned, I'm never as alert after opening my window as I was before. But the fact that she doesn't feel it is pronounced when she opens at 6:30 if she does when she opens it earlier, is the part that's interesting.

Melanie Avalon: That's one of the amazing things though that I really love about having an evening meal is, I can use it as that zeitgeber, if I'm saying it right. Basically, it makes me tired every night, even if I would otherwise be a little bit more wired that night. It's a consistent signal, especially if you struggle with insomnia or something like that. Having a consistent eating rhythm is really powerful for regulating your sleep rhythm. So, I can pretty much get my body to shut down every night with my one meal a day. And like I said, being a resident insomniac dolphin, that's really important to me.

Gin Stephens: I also wonder if it has to do with, that she's eating earlier in her fast, and maybe she hasn't fully switched over to-- I don't know, it could have something to do with her blood glucose and ketosis and the fact that she's not as fasted.

Melanie Avalon: It could be a lot of things.

Gin Stephens: Or maybe if she opens earlier, it's a different a thing. If I open earlier, like way earlier than normal, it's usually because there's a special event and I'm eating at a restaurant, and it's something that I don't usually eat and more heavy food. So, that could also be a factor.

Melanie Avalon: I think the biggest question would be before intermittent fasting, if you ate earlier, would you get tired? If you did, then actually nothing has changed. If you didn't, I think it's because food has become a signal for your body to sleep. Yeah, and/or you're eating now a bigger meal earlier, whereas before you weren't because you were eating throughout the day. So, yes. But yeah, if you eat light, that might fix it.

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Shall we go on to our next question?

Gin Stephens: Yes, let's go on.

Melanie Avalon: We have a question from Meghan. The subject is “Question for a friend who is at a healthy weight but has high cholesterol and is prediabetic.” Meghan says, “Hi, I'm Melanie and Gin. Thank you so much for all of the work you put into your podcast. First, I will tell you briefly what brought me here. I gave up wheat last month when I started getting heartburn or reflux every time I had bread or pasta. I then learned about intermittent fasting and started doing that as well. I have quite a bit of weight to lose. I started at 236 pounds, and I want to be around 135. In the past month, I have done clean fast with plain tea and water only. I eat healthy food during my eating window between two to five hours depending on my appetite each day. I have lost 16 pounds so far, yay.

My question today is for a friend. We got together yesterday. She's very slim, but she told me her doctor told her she has very high cholesterol and she is prediabetic. Her A1c is 6.2. Do you know of any journal articles that specifically address the effects of intermittent fasting for someone who is already a healthy weight, but has these health concerns? Since I just started listening to your podcast, I am only on episode 24. I definitely have a way to go to get caught up. Thank you so much for all you do. Megan.”

Gin Stephens: That is a great question. First of all, I want to say, Megan, hooray, I'm so excited for you. You're doing great. You've only been doing intermittent fasting for about a month and you're down 16 pounds. That is a-mazing.

Your friend, if her A1c is 6.2, high cholesterol, prediabetic, you're right, yeah, there's some things she can do to bring down that A1c, work on her overall health. And I do think that intermittent fasting would be a great choice for her. The very best article for anybody who wants to do intermittent fasting for health purposes and not for weight loss, is from the New England Journal of Medicine. The title of it is Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Health, Aging and Disease. And Mark Mattson is one of the authors. It's the one that came out on December 26th of 2019, and really changed a conversation from everyone saying, “Yeah, intermittent fasting for weight loss,” to, “Oh, intermittent fasting for health benefits.” That article really goes through the research and talks about all the things that intermittent fasting can help with. Being prediabetic, that would be one of the things on the list. So, I would recommend that.

You have to register for a New England Journal of Medicine free account to access it, but they're not going to spam you with stuff. You have to put in your email address and register, but it's worth it. You can download the article in PDF form and have a copy to read. So, I would highly recommend anybody who is interested in intermittent fasting for health benefits, if you want to see what all the different health benefits are, they did a great job putting it all together for this article because it's a review article that has all the different publications, all the different things that intermittent fasting can do for you. All in there, categorized, all the research is there. You can go down the rabbit hole of finding all of it. That's what I would do.

Melanie Avalon: I thought that was a great suggestion. A framework to consider about everything, one, is that I think we often assume that you have to be overweight to have health conditions, or maybe more likely, on the flip side, that if you're thin, that you won't have certain health conditions.

Gin Stephens: Can I pop in with a personal story real quick?

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.

Gin Stephens: They often consider Alzheimer's to be type 3 diabetes, high levels of insulin in the brain. Chad's aunt had early-onset Alzheimer's, and she was very, very thin, but she always ate, had Coke and candy bars, and I'm certain her blood sugar was nuts. And she had early-onset Alzheimer's and was thin. She probably could have benefited from some fasting.

Melanie Avalon: I agree. To that point, weight often correlates to health issues, but it doesn't necessarily, and actually, like the Asian population, for example, they tend to be thinner, but they're more prone metabolically to having issues with things like diabetes and blood sugar regulation. A reasoning for it that can happen is that basically, it has to do with energy toxicity and based on your genes, your fat cells may be predisposed to either when they become full, split in half and create a new fat cell. Basically, it becomes really easy to gain weight, because you keep creating new fat cells, and then you keep getting bigger and bigger. While that looks like a problem because you're gaining weight, it's actually protecting you because those fat cells are creating a bank for all of that excess energy coming in. It pushes off until a little bit later getting the diabetic issues, compared to people whose fat cells are not accustomed to doing that genetically, so they don't split and form new fat cells.

What happens in that case is people don't gain the weight that you would expect from excess energy consumption. Instead, it creates a buildup of fuel in the bloodstream, because you don't have fat cells to take in that excess energy, and so stuff is just building up in the bloodstream. The blood sugar is taking too long in the bloodstream, creating diabetes, glycating your red blood cells, which is what your A1C is looking at. Ironically, you can be very slim and actually more predisposed to having blood sugar regulation issues. Yeah, that's something to consider.

I'm also going to link in the show notes to a study called Clinical Management of Intermittent Fasting in Patients with Diabetes. It basically just talks about how intermittent fasting is a viable method for people to manage diabetes, and that's not dependent on them being overweight to start. One of the things to consider is that even if the studies are in overweight patients, I know people can make the argument that if there's a study on overweight patients with intermittent fasting, and they see health benefits, people will make the argument that, “Oh, the health benefits were just because they lost weight, not from the fasting specifically.” I think there's enough literature, like the one that Gin just mentioned, but just in general, in patients who are not overweight seeing health benefits. So, I would not be concerned about that you have to be overweight to experience the health benefits of intermittent fasting.

This could be something great for your friend, I think, especially since, yes, prediabetic, A1c 6.2 and very high cholesterol, this could be something to definitely, definitely try. I will just make a note about the cholesterol is that when people-- Well, you know what? This is something I actually wonder. Gin, I’d be curious about your thoughts on this. A lot of people who are overweight and do intermittent fasting often see a transient increase in cholesterol due to the weight loss, but if it's a situation where she doesn't actually need to lose weight from the intermittent fasting, I wonder if there's a potential of seeing that boost in cholesterol or if it might just address it from the beginning. Does that make sense?

Gin Stephens: It does. Even though someone doesn't “need" to lose weight, they still might lose some. When Chad started intermittent fasting for the health benefits, he did lose some weight. He did not need to, but he got slimmer than he already was. And then he stopped, he didn't just keep losing weight until he wasted away to nothingness. [laughs] He lost some weight and then stabilized at a weight that was lower than he had been but he's still healthy, so he lost some fat.

Melanie Avalon: That's a great point. My initial response was she might see a boost in cholesterol, but I feel that happens the-- I don't know, but I feel that happens to most when people lose a lot of weight in the beginning.

Gin Stephens: Well, yeah, because as you're losing the fat, it ends up in your bloodstream, and so that shows up on your cholesterol test. That's why it's transient as part of the weight loss process. But it's hard to know. Just depends on what your body is doing. It wouldn't be only happening in people who were overweight. It could be someone who doesn't need to lose weight, but they're also releasing some fat.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. Great question. We will put links like I said to everything in the show notes at ifpodcast.com/episode233. Yeah, I don't think we have time for any more questions. If you'd like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can also follow us on Instagram. I'm @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens. A plug again to send us questions for Robb Wolf. Oh, and I just have to keep plugging, listeners, if you'd like to get my new Serrapeptase supplement, you can get on my email list for that at melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. Yeah, I think that is all of the things. Anything else, Gin, from you before we go?

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it. I can't wait to hear about your second muffin experience to see if it's just as delicious, the second. I'm still laughing at that, that you love the muffin.

Melanie Avalon: I'm both dreading and dreaming about it.

Gin Stephens: I shared it with the moderators that also have gone through so, I'm like, “Oh my God, Melanie loved them off.” And they're like, “What?” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: The most amazing thing. Another reason, I think it's going to be perfect to do it this week, is I have to get a colonoscopy this week. It's like a built-in just clean out the system after the muffin craziness.

Gin Stephens: Keep us posted.

Melanie Avalon: I will. All right, well, 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.

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Sep 26

Episode 232: Politely Declining Food, Gain Health, Changing Mindset, When The IF Stops Working, Injury & Becoming Sedentary, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 232 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 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get Free Ground Beef For LIFE!!

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! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

The Diet Myth: Why the Secret to Health and Weight Loss Is Already in Your Gut (Tim Spector)

Spoon-Fed: Why Almost Everything We’ve Been Told About Food Is Wrong (Tim Spector)

To join the ZOE app and learn about your unique body!

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23:00 - Listener Feedback: Lorraine - I'm Impressed

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32:40 - Listener Feedback: Tracey - Listener feedback for ep. 227

Intermittent Fasting: Live ‘Fast,’ Live longer?

Clean(ish): Eat (Mostly) Clean, Live (Mainly) Clean, and Unlock Your Body's Natural Ability to Self-Clean

47:25 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Month And Free Shipping!

49:55 - Listener Q&A: Jennifer - Gained a Few and Don't want to get derailed

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)

The Little Book of Big Change: The No-Willpower Approach to Breaking Any Habit (Amy Johnson)

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 232 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

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

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What's super amazing is ButcherBox makes sure their members are taken care of, and today we have a special offer just for our listeners. ButcherBox is giving new members free ground beef for life. Yes, for life. You can sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast and you will get two pounds of ground beef free in every order for the life of your membership. Just log on to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast to claim this deal. And we'll put all this information in the show notes.

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare and makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body.

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

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

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 232 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. How are you?

Melanie Avalon: I'm good. Guess what I'm doing right now?

Gin Stephens: Recording a podcast. [laughs] Sorry, I had to.

Melanie Avalon: Guess what else I am doing?

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: You actually don't know?

Gin Stephens: No, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Because sometimes, you know. Sometimes, I ask you a question, you know. I am doing ZOE thing.

Gin Stephens: Oh, very cool.

Melanie Avalon: I am on day three. That is the Muffin Day.

Gin Stephens: Ooh. It's Muffin Day. How are you feeling on Muffin Day?

Melanie Avalon: I've been so nervous about this Muffin Day for three weeks.

Gin Stephens: And?

Melanie Avalon: I haven't had the muffins yet, but the issue, I am so comfortable with my one meal a day pattern, I want to do the muffins in my one meal a day, and-- I should backtrack. So, for listeners who are not familiar, ZOE is something that Gin and I have talked about a lot on this show. It's led by Tim Spector, who wrote, actually reading his first book right now, The Diet Myth, and what's the second one? Even though, I just read it.

Gin Stephens: Spoon-Fed?

Melanie Avalon: Spoon-Fed. So, he wrote those books and he started ZOE, which it was originally the PREDICT study which Gin took place in, correct?

Gin Stephens: No, I did not take place to PREDICT 1 or 2. By the time I did ZOE, it was technically PREDICT 3. Yes. So, my data, it will be in PREDICT 3. But I did ZOE as a consumer, and you had to opt in. So, your data may be in the study too.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, actually, is that I was opting in? Does that mean I'm actually part of the study?

Gin Stephens: Sounds like it, if you opted in. Yeah. Because they're still very much studying. That's why they keep changing things up, because the study continues. It's ongoing.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, gotcha. Is there a waitlist now? Do we know? I think they got rid of the waitlist now.

Gin Stephens: They were having trouble fitting in people, but then they opened up. They were able to handle more people now.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, gotcha. So, for listeners, it's a lot of stuff. I did the microbiome sample.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that part was a lot.

Melanie Avalon: That was like nothing for me.

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, it was different when I did the American Gut Project back in 2017. It was a simpler process, let me just say. The ZOE process was a little more hands all in now, I'll just put it like that.

Melanie Avalon: How was it for the American Gut Project?

Gin Stephens: It just involved. I don't want to get too detailed. Everyone if you're squeamish fluttered away for a minute, but [laughs] involved toilet paper and a Q-tip.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, interesting. Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: Yes. As opposed to, we joked about it in the moderator group. We called it the poop sling. [laughs] The people that were going through it involved a poop sling and a scooper. Do you have a poop sling and a scooper?

Melanie Avalon: I have done so many poop tests as they're called. This one does use the sling contraption. I was like, “Wow, this makes it so easy.”

Gin Stephens: Oh, thank goodness for the poop sling.

Melanie Avalon: I've never done one with [giggles] a sling before, and what's so amazing is, you just flush it straight into the toilet. Normally, you're having to collect in a bucket or some sort of thing, and then you have to discard of that. Normally, there's a lot more to the process. This, I was like, “Wow.”

Gin Stephens: Okay, well, I'm very grateful. But it was still way more in depth than the one I'd done before. I was like, “Where's the Q-tip? What?”

Melanie Avalon: And only required a tiny, tiny sample. Sometimes, they require a lot.

Gin Stephens: Some of the moderators, I love my moderator family, but a couple of them that write little messages, whoever the guy's name was that he was addressed to, they're like, "Dear such and such," they wrote him a note, when they mailed it to him.

Melanie Avalon: Did it say who it's addressed to?

Gin Stephens: I'm pretty sure it does. It did back then. It had that a person's name that it was addressed to on the address label that they wrote them personal note. So, I thought that was sweet.

Melanie Avalon: I am very impressed with how streamlined it all is. I don't know how much has changed since you did it, but it's very--

Gin Stephens: They care very much about the user experience, and they also care very much about the research and the data, because that's really what they're doing, is they are pioneering this type of research, and it's always changing, and it's always getting better.

Melanie Avalon: They even call you when you first get your kit. They set up a call, which I was like, “That's very impressive.”

Gin Stephens: It was impressive. I have a link at ginstephens.com/zoe. I know you're going to have a link eventually too. But for now, if anybody wants to read more about it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they gave me a link and code. So, that's cool. I actually interview Tim Spector next week.

Gin Stephens: Oh, I’d love it.

Melanie Avalon: That's exciting. I have so many questions, though, about these muffins. I'm going to ask him so many questions. I'm very confused about-- So, the muffins. We haven't said what the muffins are yet. There are breakfast, lunch, and then the next day, lunch muffins. I don't know if I'm going to do the next day. They said it's optional. I might just do it today. But they're made of different calorie breakdowns of carbs, and fat, and calories. So, you take a blood test, and they analyze how you are reacting or how you're processing fat and sugar, because if you are opting into the study, you wear a CGM which they provide as well, which is super amazing. Although the one I'm wearing right now, I've been wearing so many CGMs. I can tell when it's off, and this one is off. I'm pretty sure.

I'm just very curious about what conclusions they draw, and this is what I'm going to ask him on the muffins with muffins being an ultra-processed food, how might the findings be different? This is really helpful, because I haven't vocalized this yet. So, this helps me when I interview him next week. How might the findings be different if it was the exact same calories, exact same macros, but whole foods?

Gin Stephens: I guess this would be worst-case scenario. The muffins are the worst-case scenario food you could eat. So, it's going to show you your worst-case processing scenario. Then obviously, it's going to be better with real foods. But it still will show the fat still as fat, sugar is sugar at a basic level. But they want to see what happens when they dump it straight into your bloodstream. What do you do with it? So, it's probably better that it's ultra-processed garbage food than a mixed meal, which is going to have so many other variables. This is the quickest way to get a whole big load into your system, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, what I'm also curious about, you do the breakfast muffin which, I think-- So, one of them is supposed to represent the standard American meal, which I think is the breakfast, and then the lunch one represents a lower everything meal, lower fat, lower calorie, and then you take the prick after-- which by the way, did you say it was difficult for you to do the finger prick?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I didn't like the finger prick. I had to squeeze and I'm usually a pretty good bleeder, but I had to squeeze, squeeze, squeeze, squeeze, squeeze so much blood out of my finger that it hurt, bruised it.

Melanie Avalon: I'm nervous. I was reading now.

Gin Stephens: Oh, have you not done it yet?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. What's funny is it takes six hours from start to finish doing the breakfast and the lunch muffins. Because normally I don't start eating until way later. So, I keep thinking about it. But I'm going to start I think at 7 PM which means I will be doing the fingerpick at 1 AM.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] Oh, you're going to be a very interesting case.

Melanie Avalon: I know. I'm going to have to take off my blue light blocking glasses because I can't see the color red when I wear them so I won't be able to see the blood.

Gin Stephens: It will be okay. Take off your blue light glasses just for one day.

Melanie Avalon: The things I do. I scheduled a colonic tomorrow just in case it messes up my digestion. I'm taking this very seriously.

Gin Stephens: I wonder how that would impact things.

Melanie Avalon: Well, it shouldn't impact anything because it's going to be after the fact.

Gin Stephens: But I mean, in general.

Melanie Avalon: Well, it's just your large intestine that affects and all of the processing is in your small intestine. So, I don't think it would affect.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I don't know much about colonics.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I do. [laughs]

Gin Stephens: I know zero. Yeah, I just learned more about a colonic than I ever knew. This does not seem like something I want to do.

Melanie Avalon: The small intestine is not really accessible by any means. That's why when you do a colonoscopy, you have to clear out your system from the top down. So, yes, I'm excited. We'll see. We shall see.

Gin Stephens: Oh, I'm glad you're excited.

Melanie Avalon: I was so nervous. I looked at the ingredients on these muffins. I just know they're going to taste amazing.

Gin Stephens: Okay, well, I can’t wait to hear from you how they were, because I was excited, because I like muffins in general, I'm a muffin lover. I'm like, “This is going to be delicious.” They were not, they were very hard to get down. By the time I got to the last one, I was like, “No more.” I've never heard anyone say they love the muffin ever yet.

Melanie Avalon: You're going to hear it from me.

Gin Stephens: Well, promise that you're going to not just say it to say. You have to be honest.

Melanie Avalon: I don't lie.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] If I don't like it, I'll tell you.

Gin Stephens: Well, it's like my niece's, they were like guaranteed. They would like coconut water. We were at the beach in June, they're like, “Can we try that, Aunt Gin?” I’m like, “You're not going to like it.” You just like the name of it. Coconut water sounds better than it is to a child. You're not going to like it. They're like, “We promise, we will.” Then I gave them each just a little bit, and they're like, “Oh, yum,” but then they didn't drink a second amount, and they didn't want anymore. I'm like, “You don't want anymore?” I said, “You don't like it?” They're like, “Oh, no, we like it.” One of them said, “We just don't like the way it smells.” I'm like, “Okay.” They would rather die than admit to me that they didn't like it after claiming they were going to like it.

Melanie Avalon: That's so funny. That's really funny. Especially, since so much of taste is smell, so if you don't like the way it smells, I highly doubt--

Gin Stephens: Well, they didn't like anything about it. I knew they weren't going to like coconut water. I love coconut water. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: That's funny. The thing I'm dreading I think the most about the muffins, this will be the first time Gin in-- I don't remember the last time, doing intermittent fasting, the way we both do it, it's very much understood in our feeding window that we don't have to stop eating. So, that's what I'm dreading. I know I'm going to eat those two muffins, and I'm going to be really hungry, and I have to wait four hours.

Gin Stephens: I was starving. That is exactly what happened. I was so hungry, and I wanted to eat something else, and I couldn't.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like I relate to all of these listeners that are dreading the fasting period, because, ugh, I have to eat the two muffins, and then I made a list of things to do for four hours. [laughs] I'm like, “What can I do? I can go run an errand? I could go talk to the Whole Foods guy, maybe?”

Gin Stephens: Oh, my gosh, that's hilarious.

Melanie Avalon: Because he works on Fridays.

Gin Stephens: Yeah? But yes, I definitely was hungry in between the muffins, and that was the hardest part. Even though they didn't taste good to me, I didn't like them, the hard part was literally not being able to eat.

Melanie Avalon: The big task I'm going to do though for reals and oh, this is just a really quick fun fact, you know my hydroponic cucumbers?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: I was feeling like such a failure because it started dying. I didn't realize cucumber plants, they're the type that just die. They don't come back. Their lifespan is only 70 days. So, it was time for them to die, but I had a moment where I was like, “Oh, my goodness. What did I do?”

Gin Stephens: You're a bad cucumber mama.

Melanie Avalon: But it's their time. So, I've got to deconstruct all that and start a new garden. Maybe that'll take four hours.

Gin Stephens: Well, that'll take a while.

Melanie Avalon: So, that's good.

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm home from the beach and it's so quiet in Augusta after being at the beach, because it's so loud. The shore, the waves, the wind.

Melanie Avalon: Are people loud?

Gin Stephens: Well, sometimes people are. Those jokers who were setting off fireworks outside my window at 4 AM one night, they were loud. I was not happy about that. [laughs] I woke up. I'm like, “What is that?” The teacher in me, I wanted to run outside and say, "What are you doing?" But I didn't because I'm like, I don't want these people to know where I live if they're the kind of people out there shooting off fireworks on the beach at 4 AM.

Melanie Avalon: I wonder if anybody-- I'm sure in the history of America this has happened, like somebody's showing off a firework and then shot it into a house.

Gin Stephens: Well probably. My neighbor at the beach was telling me about a time that one of their cousins or something was there and caught the dunes on fire with their fireworks. [laughs] Glad, they didn't do that while I was asleep.

Melanie Avalon: I know.

Gin Stephens: Anyway, it's nice to be home. Chad sure did miss me, though. [laughs] Yeah, because he's been eating-- he's not as cleanish as me. Let me just put it that way. So, he's been eating like fried chicken finger, frozen ones that he gets out of the freezer and then microwaves. I’m like gross.

Melanie Avalon: Sounds like my dad.

Gin Stephens: No, but he also has been eating Daily Harvest smoothies. I had like a bunch stocked up in the fridge, and he's like, “I ate all the smoothies.” I'm like, “What?” He's like, “Yep.” [laughs] That's the only nutrition I guess that he had. He was blending them up. At least, he got some nutrients in him.

Melanie Avalon: Well, welcome back.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's good to be back. Although I do already miss the beach, but [sighs]

Melanie Avalon: What are you going to do? Go back?

Gin Stephens: Eventually. Right now, the renter that's going to be there for the whole month this September, we're recording this on a Friday, should check in. She or he, I don't know, checks in tomorrow. My neighbors are there and I'm like spy on this renter and let me know. [laughs] Send me a text and let me know what's happening, because they're going to be there for a month. So, I'm very interested in supposed to be one adult. I hope that's true. One adult is likely to be pretty safe.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Sounds like it. Unless it's one crazy adult who throws the parties.

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know. [laughs] Hopefully not.

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. To start things off, we've got some listener feedback, and this comes from Lorraine. Lorraine says, "Hi, Melanie. I'm not easy to impress and not want to write fan mail, but I feel compelled to tell you, you are making an impact. I've been with you from the first IF podcast in the spring of 2017. I remember listening to you and Gin chatting about how great it would be to have a sponsor someday. Now, look at you. I am so happy for you both.

Gin Stephens: Isn't that funny? I remember that though. It was a long time before we had a sponsor like a year. It was like an insurance company. That was our first sponsor.

Melanie Avalon: That's crazy. And now there are brands literally every day wanting to come on the show. She says, how I found you was truly a moment of, wait, I don't know this word.

Gin Stephens: Kismet?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. What does that mean?

Gin Stephens: It was just meant to be or something like that.

Melanie Avalon: How is that not in my vocabulary?

Gin Stephens: I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Do you think it's an archaic word that's getting phased out?

Gin Stephens: I don't know. I've just always heard it. I don't know what the origin is. Let me look it up. Kismet, fate. Is that Yiddish? Actually, it was Turkish, it was Arabic.

Melanie Avalon: Oh.

Gin Stephens: Kismet.

Melanie Avalon: Anyway.

Gin Stephens: Fate or destiny.

Melanie Avalon: Learn something new every day. Lorraine says, "I've been researching natural remedies for healing diverticulitis. The only info I could find was ads for potions and brews that didn't have any science behind them. One morning, I thought if I had a broken arm, would I keep using it? Of course, not. So, I started researching, rest in the gut, and all kinds of fasting info came up. That led to intermittent fasting and I was hooked. It reminded me that in high school, I ate one meal a day." Interesting, she was doing that in high school.

Gin Stephens: I think a lot of people naturally get into that pattern.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that's really interesting.

Gin Stephens: Until they're told you have to eat breakfast and then they start forcing themselves, and then they feel terrible. They think they have to do it. So, they do it.

Gin Stephens: She says when she was doing it in high school, it felt familiar and right. "That same week, my son suggested I listen to podcasts. He downloaded the app and said type in something you want to learn about. One entry came up for intermittent fasting. You and Gin were there with Episode number 1. I heard the lost episode."

Gin Stephens: We only had one episode at the time. So, this was May. We now know when it was, May of 2017. That's great. This is funny though. She's the second person to mention that episode to me today. I interviewed someone on my podcast today, and he was like--

Melanie Avalon: Had they heard it?

Gin Stephens: No. He was like, “I never got an Episode 1.” I'm like, “Yeah, sorry.” [laughs] The lost, episode, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Do we tell our personal stories in it?

Gin Stephens: It was. It was our diet stories. But we've told our diet story so many times since then, y'all aren't missing anything, everybody.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. She says, for four years you and Gin have been with me teaching, encouraging, and sharing. In fact, you answered my email on Episode 64. You were both so concerned for me. So sweet, almost 10 whole minutes on my little-known condition. Since then, I have all your books, listen to all your podcasts, listen to the books from the people on your podcast, take serrapeptase, use red lights daily, have an Oura Ring, have tried Feals, I will give them a call to see about dosing, and wearing a CGM, I have SelfDecode, I take very cool showers which is huge for me, and most recently, I am a huge Beautycounter fan. I am super fussy, and each product I have ordered has surpassed my expectations. I love all the skincare. The mascara and lipstick are the best I ever used. Then came the shampoo and conditioner. Oh, my goodness, the washing experience is luxurious. My hair feels wonderful and my husband loves the way it smells.

You have brought so much amazing information to us all. While it may not be appropriate to say as I have had nothing to do with your development, but I am so proud of you. I see your dedication and all the work you put into everything you do, and I'm so impressed. It's strange to feel like I know you and know you have no idea who I am. But hopefully, knowing you are making a difference is a small payback for all you do. Thanks for everything, much gratitude, Lorraine."

Gin Stephens: Oh, I love that Lorraine.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I loved that as well. I love that she organically came up with the idea about resting the gut, and then came to intermittent fasting from that. She was like, “Hmm. Maybe this concept--

Gin Stephens: "A part of me is not working. I need to rest it."

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I just thought that was really incredible.

Gin Stephens: Me too. And I love that she loves Beautycounter. I tell you, when Melanie, you first told me about Beautycounter, I was like, “Yeah, yeah, whatever.” [laughs] I don't know if I told anybody though, you forced me to try it by sending it to me.

Melanie Avalon: I know. I literally sent--

Gin Stephens: I was like, “I don't want to. I like what I use. I like what I'm using. I've been using it for years," and you're like, “No, really, you need to try it.” I'm like, “Okay, I'm not going to like it, but you can send it to me.” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I was sold more on the concept, like removing the endocrine disruptors, and then it was so nice. Their makeup is just amazing. So, I finally could just switch over my makeup, and it was epic makeup, but I wasn't using the skincare, and I have slowly come to the skincare because I've seen how everybody's obsessed with it.

Gin Stephens: Oh, like my friend, Sheri, that does Life Lessons with me. I can't think of the name of it. But she has-- Is it miasma, is that the name of it, the dark patches on your skin? I can't remember. But she had this dark, patchy, whatever it's called on her skin, and it has cleared it up.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow. Using what?

Gin Stephens: Whatever the one that's in the pink bottles.

Melanie Avalon: The Countertime.

Gin Stephens: Yes, she uses Countertime, because she was just at the beach house, and all of her stuff was lined up in there, and I was like, “That is so pretty.” She has the whole regimen. It was all lined up. I've got my whole set of it at the beach. Right before I left, I packed it all into the owner's closet. [laughs] You've got your owner closet and you lock it up. So, that thing was-- you couldn't have put one more thing in that owner's closet.

Melanie Avalon: The thing I'm obsessed with now of their product that I had been telling people to use because I knew it was great, and people were telling me, it was great. Oh, by the way, for listeners, I have a whole Facebook group for this called Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare. But have you tried their overnight resurfacing peel?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: I'm obsessed. I use it every single night now.

Gin Stephens: And your face doesn't really peel. Mine didn’t peel. Does yours peel? It's not like a peel peel. It sounds like you're going to peel, because have you ever used a peel that you put on and then you peel it off? It's not that at all. I just wanted to clarify that because you may be expecting it to be different.

Melanie Avalon: It's supposed to do what those expensive peels do. Those peels that you might go get, it's supposed to do that. But it's just like more like a serum. I am obsessed with it and their new mascara, so, yes for listeners, if you'd like to get your own Beautycounter, you can get it at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. Also, I just want to mention for Lorraine, she mentioned serrapeptase. For listeners, I am moving forward. Right now, what I'm working on is creating the logo, because the name is Avalon X, and I think I want to make the X look like DNA somehow.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's fun.

Melanie Avalon: I've been playing around with that. If listeners would like to get on the preorder list, you can go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. Then one last thing, Lorraine mentioned Feals. I did not plan this. They're actually a sponsor on today's show. So, if you would like more information about them, they make an amazing, incredible CBD, which side note by the way, I cannot tell you how often CBD brands approached me.

Gin Stephens: Oh, all the time. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: All the time. I think two last week. I’m like, “I'm sorry, I love Feals.” So, listeners check out that ad for more information about them. They have an amazing offer with us. I'm not sure what the offer is right now, but the link will be feals.com/ifpodcast, and if you listen to the ad, you can get whatever the offer is.

Gin Stephens: Awesome.

Melanie Avalon: And Lorraine, thank you so much for your email. We're so happy for you, and it really means a lot. It's really, really wonderful to read that, and we're super happy for you. So, thank you.

Gin Stephens: Really it does. It makes me so happy to think of people who listen every week, and she said that she feels like she knows us. Well, she does. [laughs] We put it all out there. So, if you feel like you know us, you really do because we are not different in person than we are on the air.

Melanie Avalon: You know what’s funny? I was just thinking about that. We have shared so much of ourselves, we are our authentic selves on this show. So, people do know us.

Gin Stephens: They do. they do. [laughs] If you saw me in public, I'd be talking to you exactly the same way as I do on the show. Yeah, that's the thing. I can't be any other way than I am, [laughs] hard as I try. I've tried certain times. I'm like, “Don’t do that. Stop.” I'm like, “I can't help it.” [laughs] Sigh. It's good, and it's bad.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I can attest that this is the way we are.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Well, anyway, I love doing the podcast. It's like such a good--

Melanie Avalon: It's just so fun.

Gin Stephens: It really is. It is. But thank you, Lorraine.

Melanie Avalon: I learn a lot because people ask questions that make me think about new things. It's nice to hear what's happening from people in the intermittent fasting world. It’s just nice.

Gin Stephens: It really is. I love to think of people who have listened from the beginning.

Melanie Avalon: I know. Episode 1.

Gin Stephens: Now, we have a question from Tracy, and the subject is "Listener feedback for Episode 227." Tracy says, "Hello ladies, thank you for this show. I appreciate the weekly chats. When I listened to Sarah's questions at the end of Episode 227, I got the impression that her question about how to navigate non-window [unintelligible [00:32:59] offerings could use some sample language. Specifically, when a simple no thank you is not respected. I'm often invited to lunch by people who don't know that I don't eat that early. Here's what I say when offered to eat something that I don't want to eat. No, thank you. No, thank you, I'm not hungry. No, thank you. I'm not hungry. I'm really not hungry. No, thank you, I'm not hungry. I'm really not hungry. Trust me." [laughs] That's funny. I love that, Tracy.

She said, "I definitely tried to change the subject after each dismissal. But some people just don't take no for an answer. If they continue to press, I let them know that when I eat when I'm not hungry, essentially, force feeding myself, I get immediately queasy and will need to leave, and the rest of my day will be ruined. Then, my very clear subject change is usually accepted. The key is to not give in and to speak with courage. It takes a little practice but it gets easier.

Now, I have a quick note to Melanie about her Feals copy. I recommend googling the difference between robbery or burglary. Your apartment was burgled, you are not there. If you were there and threatened, then you would have been robbed. Another word for robbed is mugged. Both require your presence. I'm happy that you weren't there. So, I'm happy that you were not robbed, and I can only empathize with the violation of being burgled. Thank you, again for the show. You to make my Monday morning drive something to look forward to. Best, Tracy."

Melanie Avalon: I love this email from Tracy, and it's so interesting. People think that the most difficult thing about starting intermittent fasting will be the hunger or the actual fasting period. But for a lot of people that actually is not that difficult, and people are often very surprised by that. It can be hard and it can be a transition, but I think it often ends up being a lot easier than people expect compared to on the flip side, I think a lot of people don't anticipate dealing with a social aspect of it can actually be a difficult-- depending on who you're with a difficult environment to navigate more so than people often realize. It's just really interesting how people can get so invested or almost intrusive about your own personal eating decisions. So, I think it's really healthy to feel confident about why you're doing what you're doing, and also feel like you don't have to give in to pressure from other people, and to feel okay about that. I think it's really nice to have, go to actual sample sentences to give. It's funny. In What When Wine I give sample sentences. Do you have them in your books, Gin?

Gin Stephens: I don't think so. I'm more of like just tell him you're doing intermittent fasting. [laughs] Honestly, but I do talk about the topic. I can't remember how I what I said about it. But I think in this day and age, we should just tell people and plant that seed, even if they think you're crazy, you're not and just plant the seed, and maybe one day, they'll want to know more and want to do it themselves.

Melanie Avalon: When I first wrote the book and was coming up with that section, I feel like so much has changed. It is a lot easier now to say you're doing intermittent fasting and people will understand.

Gin Stephens: Every person you talk to about it has either tried it or they know someone who has. Most of them know someone who's had success with it. So, it's not out there and weird like it used to be.

Melanie Avalon: You could always do it. But you can say that that's what you're doing, and most people will understand.

Gin Stephens: To say, I follow an intermittent fasting lifestyle and my window isn't open yet. That's all.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, in the past, when it wasn't well known, it was just wasn't known, it came off as very strange. [laughs] Often, depending on who you're with.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, oh, it did. People will be like, “What?” Well, okay. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: They thought you were being way unnecessarily restrictive, or doing some crazy crash diet, or it seemed unhealthy. But now, it's pretty much understood.

Gin Stephens: Really. It's like that turning point was that New England Journal of Medicine article in December of 2019, and it was all over the media that next week. You could not turn the TV on without a news article.

Melanie Avalon: Which one was that? Who did it?

Gin Stephens: It was Mark Mattson.

Melanie Avalon: Was it, [unintelligible 00:37:22]?

Gin Stephens: No, it was Dr. Mark Mattson from Johns Hopkins. That article was the real turning point, because it was the first mainstream message about it for health benefits. It wasn't about losing weight. That was not an article about how to lose weight. I've said this before, I don't know if I've said it on this podcast but what really excited me after that article came out is, when people were joining the Facebook group, we ask why are you interested in intermittent fasting, the general answer had always been is, I want to lose weight. That's what most people said. But all of a sudden, people were saying, I want to get healthy. I was like, “This is the biggest thing that's ever happened,” because I've been saying for a long time, intermittent fasting is the health plan with a side effect of weight loss. But still the paradigm out there was, I do intermittent fasting to lose weight. That's what people would say. Not just me I but the generic I. When people were like, “Oh, I'm doing it to be healthy," I was like,” Now, you've got it. Now, we've reached a turning point," because it's such a healthy way to live. If you do intermittent fasting, you never lose a single pound ever. You're still a success, because you're doing something that's healthy for your body.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, actually, similarly to that like I said, I'm making my way through The Diet Myth, and what I was listening to right before we started recording, he was talking about the role of exercise and weight loss. He was saying, is it healthier to be lean and sedentary or not? I think, he says fat. Like fat and fit. Yeah, fat and fit. He was saying that it's healthier to be fat and fit, and the point of everything that I'm saying and the parallel to what you were saying is, there's so much more and things we do like exercise or intermittent fasting that affect metabolic factors, and health, and disease risk, and just so many things that are independent of the weight.

Gin Stephens: Exactly, and for all those years when I was trapped in diet mentality, I only wanted to do things that would decrease the size of my body. That was it. That was my goal. Decrease the size of my body. Even if it was eating, drinking shakes, I got and eating this cardboard tasting diet food, it was just to make my body smaller. That stuff wasn't healthy at all. But when you start looking at your life, I want to be healthy. When I really made that mindset shift, “Oh, I want a happy healthy eat, and live a long time,” and that's when I really started changing what I was doing, and doing things that were high impact. So, I don't do intermittent fasting, because it helps me maintain my weight. I do it because it's healthy. I'm glad it helps me maintain my weight. But even if it didn't, I wouldn't stop doing it.

Melanie Avalon: For both of us, our journeys really did lead to that. Like with me, and my Biohacking Podcast, it's really all about, that's what it's about really is finding the different things that support health and longevity, and you with Clean(ish), you're exploring things in our environment, in our food, and everything that really do affect our health from that perspective.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. When we're trying to write the description for it, or wherever the conversation with the editorial team about, how do we want to describe it, and they really want to put weight loss in it, as far as like what should people expect as far as weight loss? I'm like, “No, that's not what this book is.” [laughs] I had a hard time convincing them. This is not a weight loss book. It's a health book. It's not a book, I'm not promising you're going to lose any weight at all. We're not getting cleanish to lose weight. I had to be really firm, and finally, they heard me and my editor loves the book, which makes me so happy. We had a phone conversation the other day. She really loves it. I had to fight for a lot of things, and luckily, they listen. I've got a great editorial team. So, that's good. But I'm like, “No, no weight loss promises. This is not a weight loss book.”

Melanie Avalon: When's the release date, again?

Gin Stephens: It's January 4th.

Melanie Avalon: When will you have the galley?

Gin Stephens: I have till Tuesday. They sent me the PDF of what the galley is going to look like. So, I have to give it a read, and let them know if anything needs to be changed before they print the galleys.

Melanie Avalon: I want to book you for my show. [laughs] Will you come back on my show?

Gin Stephens: I would love to come back on your show. This is all not new information for you obviously. I went down so many different paths with it, and it really just inspired me to make changes, and why it really is so important. Little changes. You don't have to change everything. It's impossible to change everything unless you live in a bubble. If you've lived in a bubble, what's that bubble made of? Is the bubble clean? [laughs] You can go down so many rabbit holes, but just knowing that little changes do add up to big changes.

Melanie Avalon: Super excited for you.

Gin Stephens: Well, thank you.

Melanie Avalon: And I'm grateful because it's really great that you can share this message because you have such a large platform, and I think it's such an important message.

Gin Stephens: Well, it is an important message. I think people are ready to hear it, and ready to make changes, but without getting crazy. That's the thing. So many of the books-- When I'm writing something, I like to look and see what's already out there about it. And so many of the books are so hardcore, and it's an impossible standard to live up to. Then, you feel like a failure.

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm, exactly.

Gin Stephens: But you can't. Even with intermittent fasting, you have to have flexibility in how you live your life, and know what makes the difference. So, hopefully, I'll inspire people to make some changes.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. All right. Then, last thing, I did not know that about the burglar versus robbery.

Gin Stephens: I did but then again, I was an elementary teacher. Things like that, I spend a lot of time on word meanings, and vocabulary lessons, and [laughs] things like that.

Melanie Avalon: I adore words. So, I love-- Anytime listeners want to tell me fun facts about words, I receive them with open arms.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, me too. I love that kind of thing too. That's probably why I became an elementary teacher because you've got to do stuff like that. But yes, you were burgled. Also, loved the sound of that word. I don't like being burgled.

Melanie Avalon: It sounds like muggle like oh, and then there's the word, mug. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Or, burger. You are burgered, burgled.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know if this is word [unintelligible 00:43:52], but it doesn't sound like a very pretty word. Burgled.

Gin Stephens: Burgled.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And I don't know. The G sound. It's like, I don't know.

Gin Stephens: Well, it's not a good experience. I've never been burgled or mugged. Well, that's not true. When I was 10-- this is a very sad story. Have I ever told you the story?

Melanie Avalon: No.

Gin Stephens: When I was 10, I would come visit my dad down here in the Augusta area. My mother was in Virginia. So, I would fly back and forth. But when I was 10, I was here for my 10th birthday, and they had a big birthday party for me at the Country Club, and all the neighborhood kids came, and I remember being there at the pool and getting all these presents. It was like a big deal because I 10, double digit. So, I got all these wonderful birthday presents, and then it's time to fly back to Virginia, I was flying out of Atlanta. So, they took me to Atlanta, and my dad and I went to Six Flags, but my dad and I went to a Braves game, just the two of us. This was in 1979, because that was the year I turned 10. So, we were at the stadium, we parked. All my luggage was in the trunk of the car. You see where I'm going with this. While we were at the Braves game, someone popped the trunk and stole all my luggage, and my back-to-school shopping. It was like everything. They took all my birthday presents. I was so sad. I guess I was burgled.

Melanie Avalon: That's traumatic for a little kid.

Gin Stephens: It was traumatic. I was so upset. Yeah, it was everything. I remember I had a pair of jeans in there. This was okay, 1979. A pair of jeans that were like on the on the back pocket was like a skate, and it had actual laces, like shoelaces, that you tied on your back pocket. If that doesn't scream 1979, I don't know what does. But my stepmother went out and found another pair and sent them to me in two weeks. I was like, “Oh, no, my skater jeans.”

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my gosh.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: I remember my mom used to tell me a story growing up that like scarred me for life about how when she was young, because they did not have a lot of money at all, and they would have Froot Loops, and she saved up. You know the little tickets on the back of the box? She would save all these tickets on the back of the cereal box, and she finally redeemed it to get a stuffed animal of the two can from Froot Loops, and then--

Gin Stephens: I remember stuff like that. I didn't need that kind of cereal. I didn't like it.

Melanie Avalon: Somebody stole it.

Gin Stephens: Oh.

Melanie Avalon: I was so sad hearing that story.

Gin Stephens: Do remember Green Stamps? You're way too young for Green Stamps.

Melanie Avalon: What were they?

Gin Stephens: It was like you would go to certain grocery stores and you would get Green Stamps, and you would save them, and put them-- It depended on how much you spent. Then, you would put them in these little booklets, and you'd have your whole booklet full of Green Stamps, and you could redeem them for prizes.

Melanie Avalon: From different products?

Gin Stephens: It was all sorts of things you could get depending on how many Green Stamps you saved. It was not just one store. So, it wasn't like you went to one store, and it was like their rewards program. You got them at multiple places. It was like a big program. Oh, my gosh, that was fun. I remember licking those Green Stamps and sticking them in the little booklets. I got to save them, and my mom just was like, “I'm not doing that.” So, I was doing all that, and [laughs] I would go through to took a look at catalog and pick out what I wanted. Good times. You never got to like collect those Green Stamps?

Melanie Avalon: I don't think so.

Gin Stephens: No, you would remember, S&H Green Stamps.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, definitely, I never did it. I'm just wondering if I ever saw the concept.

Gin Stephens: You probably didn't. I don't know when the program ended. You were born and I know you don't want to say. [laughs] It is probably over.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness.

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Gin Stephens: Now, we have a question from Jennifer. The subject is "Gained a few and don't want to get derailed." Jennifer says, "Hi, Gin and Melanie, I have listened to every one of each of your podcasts." That is a lot of shows. She says, "They have been a gift. You have answered a question of mine before, so I don't want to take anyone else's place. But if you have time to answer this, I would be appreciative." I'm just going to make a quick comment about that. When we get the questions, I don't check if we've answered a question before from the person, I just really go off of the questions. So, if you've had a question on here answered before, feel free to keep submitting, because I don't really take that into account when looking through the questions.

She says, "I started clean fasting on January 6th, 2020, and lost 44 pounds by my first fastaversary." Oh, I've never heard of that word before.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's so funny, fastaversary.

Melanie Avalon: I like that. "In January 2021. During that time, I fasted between 16 and 20:3 hours. But I would say my average daily fast was 17 to 18 hours. I was holding steady for six months by fasting 16 to 19 hours daily. But pretty much all of a sudden, even though I didn't change anything except a bit less exercise due to a fractured toe, I put on four to five pounds. Since my toe has begun healing, I have resumed my exercise and upped my fasting to an average of 17 to 19 hours a day for the last four weeks and the scale is not budging. Melanie, I'm guessing you would say, I should change up what I'm eating in my eating window. Ever since I started IF, I've pretty much eaten what I wanted but not low carb or low fat. I'm scared that the four pounds I have gained will morph into more, but I'm hesitant to change what I eat too much, because I get fear of missing out and then I want to eat all the things.

I have listened to Glenn Livingston. So, I know about never binge again. I am postmenopausal and finally in the normal BMI range, but at the very highest weight for my height. I'm determined to get to the goal I set originally, which is 10+ pounds from where I am. But I'm concerned that the number and the goal is creating a scale, diet, weight loss mentality. So, in a nutshell, I am determined to lose those last 10 pounds but worried that I will sabotage myself or create undue anxiety in doing so. Thoughts from you two amazing gurus. PS, fast longer than 19 hours give me panic and anxiety for some unexplained reason."

Gin Stephens: Yep. It's just so funny that this question came in today, because before we recorded today, I recorded with Paul Goodyear, who will be on Episode 178 of Intermittent Fasting Stories, which comes out December 16th. So, we have a while before his episode comes out, but I just recorded with him this morning. Here's something funny, Melanie. It was his one-year fastaversary today. We actually talked about fastaversary while we were recording the word ‘fastaversary.’

Melanie Avalon: Oh, you did?

Gin Stephens: Yeah. My phone now recognizes it. It's learned it as a word now. So, took me a while to teach it that word. Here's something about Paul. He talked about his weight. In February of 2020, he weighed 226 pounds. By June of 2020, he had gained three pounds. So, he was at 229, up three pounds. But he went from 19.3% body fat to around 16% body fat during that period of time. So, his scale went up three pounds, but he decreased his body fat. Actually, according to his data, he lost 6.87 pounds of fat but gained nine something pounds of lean mass. He was exercising, he was cycling.

So, I say that to tell you that, you say you put on four to five pounds on the scale. That might be inflammation due to your fractured toe. Because when we're healing, our bodies retain fluid. We have an increased inflammation that's part of the healing process. Things swell up. So, I wouldn't really put too much stress into that unless your clothes are getting too tight. I would really think about, am I gaining fat? Have I gained fat or is this just part of the healing process? You've just resumed your exercise for four weeks, and again, you said the scale's not budging, but when we increase our exercise that can cause also inflammation and water retention as we're working our muscles more. So, I wouldn't stress about it at this point. You're at the point, you only have 10 pounds to go to get to your goal you said. What I would do is, completely stop letting that number on the scale stress you out, and I would focus on honesty pants, measurements, and progress photos. Because I would bet you did not put on four to five pounds of fat, and I would bet that you just need to know the healing process is going to continue, and use those other measures and trust those.

Now, if your honesty pants are getting tight, they continue to start getting tighter, and if your progress photos show that, yeah, you're getting fluffier, that sort of thing, okay. Then, you need to think about art. I'm going to have to change something up, and work on the way. If you find your body doesn't like for you to fast more than 19 hours, because you don't like the panic feeling that it gives you, then it's going to have to be what you're eating. You're going to have to tweak that. That's it. We have several tools we can tweak. When we're eating, we can tweak what we're eating. If you can't tweak when you're eating, because you're fast is already at the max that it feels good for you, the only other option is tweaking what. So, that's all I have to say about that. [laughs] It's my fault. My Forrest Gump quote for the day.

Melanie Avalon: What's interesting about the toe, I was just thinking a little bit about this. If the weight gain was from lack of exercise due to the toe, which I doubt, if it was, it probably wouldn't even be the lack of concentrated acute exercise sessions. I would hypothesize, and this is literally just a hypothesis but I would hypothesize, it would be from the effect on your natural daily movement from the toe rather than not doing the exercise sessions, if that makes sense.

Gin Stephens: Becoming more sedentary, because you can't get around.

Melanie Avalon: If you were doing acute exercise sessions before, and then not doing them, the body, it tends to adjust to that and compensate with changes in hunger, changes in metabolism. So, probably the more implications that are having more of an effect would be from what Gin just said, being more sedentary. All of that said, what I hear the most in your email, Jennifer, is I hear a lot of fear, actually. I actually think the most thing to analyze and look at in yourself with all of this is the fear surrounding changing what you're eating. I'm not even going to try to convince you to change what you eat. I'm down for everybody figuring what works for them.

But if you do come to a point where-- because Gin just said, basically, you can't really change the fast anymore, because you're at the place where you are with the fast. So, it really would be changing your food, and if you want to make changes in your food, because right now, it sounds that you said you're basically just eating whatever you want, it seems to be an anticipatory fear of falling off the rails. It's not even a fear about something that's actually happening. It's how you anticipate that you might react, and I'm guessing, I don't want to make assumptions, but I'm guessing you might have a history of “falling off the rails,” or bingeing, or something. You probably have had an experience in the past where you felt not in control around food, and probably going back to that is terrifying to you, and you are feeling that it would be a trigger to clean up your food, and it is just not even worth it if that manifest. So, what I want to tell you to make you feel a little bit better about that is, that does not have to manifest. It just doesn't. There's a possibility where you make changes, and that doesn't happen. It is not an inevitable response to cleaning up your food choices, or trying low carb, or trying low fat.

You've already read Never Binge Again, that would have been one of the things I would have suggested for the mentality surrounding that. But some things I wanted to encourage you about and these are some just practical things you could literally try with this is, if your fear is that you're going to feel deprived, you're not going to get to what you want, a few different ways you could approach that. One, you could reframe and get excited. These things that you like, I don't know what these things are that you like. I don't know if it's baked goods, or cake, or chips, or cookies, or I don't know what it is, but the paleo or the whole foods world, there are an unending list of recipes to basically make any standard American processed concoction that you have right now, you can make a “whole foods” or “healthier version” of it. So, you could get excited. You could get excited and see it as a fun thing to do or you get to try to make all these things that you love. I can say, honestly, they end up tasting pretty amazing, especially when you clean up your-- If you do switch over to more whole foods and less processed foods. your taste buds really do change, and you really do start loving food in a different form that might seem surprising if you haven't tried it, but it can really, really happen. So, that's one option is reframing that way.

Another option is, it sounds like maybe you're worried about trying, committing to low carb or committing to low fat, and then just feeling restricted and deprived, and then probably getting into this a few days, or I don't know how long, of falling off the wagon. If you can try to see it as not low carb for life or not low fat for life, literally just one day, whichever approach you're trying. Maybe one day this week, you have one day, where in your eating window, you eat low fat or you eat low carb. If you can make it that one day, and you can go back to your normal, what you were doing the next day, I think doing that and then going through that and then realizing that you can do that and not fall off the wagon will give you so much power. You will feel so empowered to do it again. Then, maybe next time you do it again, maybe you could do it more than one day. But I think knowing that you can do it is really, really nice, because that will change that fear you have about falling off the wagon if you can do it one day and be successful in it.

Another thing I would like to share, another little thing. If the fear is that if you go low carb or low fat that you will feel not satisfied, and will overeat, and overcompensate, and gain weight, one of the nice things about existing in a low carb or low fat paradigm is, it's less likely that you will gain weight or do “damage” still eating all you want if you're staying in that macro paradigm within that eating window. So, I know you feel like you might be deprived about a specific food that you're craving. But as far as just like eating food, there can be a sense of abundance with it. It doesn't have to feel like restriction, trying low carb or low fat. It can still be abundance. It's just existing within this paradigm while you're playing with that window, with that approach to those macros. So, those are some things to try.

I do want to echo what Gin said, because Gin did outline a good example of how maybe this is just inflammation or that it might not have anything to do with the scale number, and so, you might not even feel the need to approach the food choices although that said, I'm always for making a shift to more whole foods, more natural foods that are really going to support your body. So, I would support that either way. Just as far as if you do feel the need to make changes within your food choices, it will be okay. I completely hear the fears you have. They're completely warranted, they're completely valid, but they don't necessarily have to be real, and you can definitely, definitely tackle them. I don't like making promises, but I can pretty much guarantee that in the future, if you have slowly come to this place where you're eating foods that are not sparking these cravings, and are not having an addictive effect on you, I feel like you probably feel more at ease and more comfortable with your food choices, and the ironic thing about it is, you might feel more free now because right now you're eating whatever you want. So, that feels really free. But in a way, it's not that free because you're scared about being controlled by your food cravings. Whereas there could be a place where maybe you are not eating these foods anymore, but you're also not feeling controlled by those cravings. So, I just think there's a lot of potential. There's a lot of mindset work to do. I know you read Glenn Livingston's, Never Binge Again. I would revisit it, I would also recommend Amy Johnson's work, The Little Book of Big Change is amazing, and I'm also bringing her on for her new book, Just a Thought, I think that's coming out in October. I'm really excited for you. So, feel free to let us know what you try and how it goes.

Gin Stephens: Yep, absolutely. I think we covered everything there was to cover there.

Melanie Avalon: I know. I was thinking about this question. I'm like, “This is perfect,” because the fear that she is feeling right now in a way is really similar to the fear I'm feeling right now about the muffins. like, it's the same thing, and really is the same thing. I'm like, “Oh, I'm going to have those muffins,” and then what I am so scared of is that wanting, that craving. In a way, it's less scary with the muffins because I'm very much protected in a way because I have to not eat anything after I eat the muffins. For science. If it wasn't for that, and it was just something similar to what Gin is doing where she is wanting to make the change, and trying something new, and is worried about it sparking this craving, I feel you. It's very real. You just have to know that it's doesn't have to control you, even though it seems like it is.

Gin Stephens: I think we got it. We got it everywhere you could possibly be on that one.

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] I've been thinking about this question for a long time. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com, and you can submit questions there. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike, and you can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast, I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens, and I think that is everything.

Gin Stephens: Yep.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, anything from you, Gin before we go?

Gin Stephens: As usual, nope. That was it.

Melanie Avalon: Perfect. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful, and I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right, talk to you then. Bye.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

Thank you so much for listening to The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember that everything discussed on the show is not medical advice. We're not doctors. You can also check out our other 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! 

 

 

Sep 19

Episode 231: Dawn Phenomenon, Instant Coffee, Hidden Sugars, Added Color In Wine, Gluconeogenesis, Unexpected Hunger, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 231 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast, hosted by Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine and Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living An Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

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

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And New Members Will Get Free Ground Beef FOR LIFE!

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! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: Melanieavalon.Com/Beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Stay Up To Date With All The News And Pre-Order Info About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At Melanieavalon.Com/Serrapeptase!

15:20 - Listener Feedback: Andrea - chronic inflammation getting better quickly!

20:30 - AUDIBLE: Go To audible.com/ifpodcast Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For A 30 Day Free Trial, Including A Free Audiobook! 

22:45 - Listener Feedback: Diane - Just listening to your #226 podcast.

Go To Melanieavalon.Com/NutrisenseCGM And Use Coupon Code MelanieAvalon For 15% Off Select Packages

Skip The (115,000 Person!) Waitlist By Going To Melanieavalon.Com/LevelsCGM With The Coupon Code MelanieAvalon!

30:55 - Listener Q&A: Pam - OMG! My instant coffee is full of sugar!

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!

38:15 - Listener Q&A: Bill - Blood Glucose

46:05 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

48:45 - Listener Q&A: Teresa - Hungry after 6 months on clean IF

55:55 - Listener Q&A: Allie - Alternate daily fasting?

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 231 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny: 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'm about to tell you how you can get free grass-fed, grass-finished ground beef for life. Yes, for life. We are huge fans of a company called ButcherBox. As you guys know, to get high quality humanely raised meat that you can trust. ButcherBox is the solution. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage-breed pork, nitrate-free sugar-free bacon, heritage-breed hotdogs, and wild-caught seafood all directly to your door. When you become a member, you're joining a community that is focused on doing what's better for all parties. That means caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect, and enjoying better nourishing meals together. They go to great lengths to ensure the highest quality so you can find actual 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef. If you've seen the Netflix documentary, Seaspiracy, you might be aware of fish fraud and problems in the seafood industry. ButcherBox maintains very, very high standards for that, and the whole process is so easy. They deliver all of this directly to your door. Once you sign up, you choose your box and your delivery frequency, they offer five boxes, four curated box options as well as the popular custom box, so with that one you can get exactly what you and your family love. They ship your order frozen at the peak freshness and packed in a 100% recyclable box, and the shipping is always free. So, basically ButcherBox makes it easy so that you can focus on cooking amazing meals, not spending hours searching for meat that meets your standards and save money in the process. 

What's super amazing is ButcherBox makes sure their members are taken care of, and today we have a special offer just for our listeners. ButcherBox is giving new members free ground beef for life. Yes, for life. You can sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast and you will get two pounds of ground beef free in every order for the life of your membership. Just log on to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast to claim this deal. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. 

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters, which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare and makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body. 

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

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

Hi, everybody and welcome. This is episode number 231 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, still at the beach. 

Melanie Avalon: Exciting. 

Gin Stephens: It is. I've really enjoyed it. I had a friend that came and stayed with me, and then another friend came and stayed with me, and now, Will is on his way to come and spend a few days, and then I'll be going home.  

Melanie Avalon: Nice.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, we have a renter that's going to be here for the entire month of September. [laughs] I'm going to have to switch everything over. It's different for when you're staying here versus when you're renting it. Anyway, I've really enjoyed my time here. It's just beautiful. The water is so warm in the ocean.  

Melanie Avalon: That is nice.  

Gin Stephens: It is. Yeah. What's up with you? 

Melanie Avalon: Do you know what's exciting about Episode 231?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't.  

Melanie Avalon: Every time we hit a one, like 31, 41, a 51, that's when I re-record the intros for the next 10 episodes, and it's like a marker and time. Because I guess that's what, two and a half months, and I always just feels like just yesterday that I was recording.  

Gin Stephens: Time is flying. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: It's so weird. It's so weird. I have a funny story. I don't know if I should share it. 

Gin Stephens: Well, then you totally should.  

Melanie Avalon: I did something crazy.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, well. Everyone wants to hear this. Everyone's saying, "Share it, share it, share it." [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I don't know. Okay. I did something kind of crazy last night.  

Gin Stephens: Well, if you think it's crazy, it's found to be crazy. Go ahead. Okay, share it.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, you can let me know if this is crazy. I don't know. Okay. [laughs] I've had like a miniature crush on this guy who works at a Whole Foods here for four years, and I really want to talk to him, but every time I go into Whole Foods, I don't go into Whole Foods when I'm dressed up and looking nice, because why would I do that? So, I was like, “How do I be at Whole Foods dressed up and nice and talk to him?” But I don't want to dress up and go to Whole Foods. If he's not there, it's just silly. Yesterday, it was a Friday, and I saw him during the day, and I was like, “Oh, well. I could dress up, and it's Friday. And then, I could come back later, and it would make sense that I would be going to Whole Foods dressed up on a Friday night.” Like I could pick out some wine, it would make sense like why I was there in a cocktail dress. Then, I can go home and I can take selfies for Instagram and stock up, so, it'll all be productive. So, I literally went to Whole Foods at 8:30 in a cocktail dress, full done up with makeup and then just went and sat in the wine section.  

Gin Stephens: At 8:30 in the morning? 

Melanie Avalon: No, at night. [laughs] Then, I didn't think he was there. I was like, “Oh, well, I guess I'm here for no reason,” and then he walked by me and I almost fainted.  

Gin Stephens: Well, did you talk to him? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Then, I was like, “Oh, my gosh, [giggles] what do I do?” Then, I picked out a wine, and then I just awkwardly walked around--  

Gin Stephens: Holding your wine?  

Melanie Avalon: Holding my wine because I wasn't sure where he was. I was like, "I have to have an agenda, what am I doing?"  

Gin Stephens: That's so funny. I can just picture it. I'm imagining you in your cocktail dress. [laughs]   

Melanie Avalon: He was at the cashier. Then I hey went to the cashier, and he was like, “Hello.” I was like, “Hello.” He was like, “Are you going out?” I was like, “Yes.” [laughs] He's never asked me a question in my entire life. In my defense, I was going out. I was going outside after leaving. 

Gin Stephens: Well, there you go. There you go.  

Melanie Avalon: He was like, “You look nice.” I was like, “Thank you.” Then, I had this [laughs] whole plan orchestrated because I wanted to have an activity to do with him at the cashier register. When you have cards that-- it's like a prepaid card that has a random amount on it, and you need to use $3.11. So, I had two of those. I was like, “I need help with something.” I was like, “Can you help me with this?” Then, it was super awkward and embarrassing because I hadn't used those cards in forever, so, I couldn't remember the pins. Then he did come around and help me, and it was so embarrassing, and then I left. 

Gin Stephens: Well, you've made contact. Now, I have to give you advice from a 52-year-old who's been in a 30-year marriage.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes.  

Gin Stephens: You need to meet him looking scruffy next.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, but he's seen me scruffy every day. That's the thing.  

Gin Stephens: That's what people see most of the time around the house is scruffy. You don't need them to like you looking dressed up. You need for them to like you scruffy. 

Melanie Avalon: He knows what I look like, because he sees me. Well, I don't know. Maybe I look so different that he doesn't realize I'm the same person. I don't know. I was like, “Mission accomplished.”  

Gin Stephens: Well, now, he's seen you both ways. So, that's good.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Then I left, and then I was really productive and took a lot of selfies for Instagram. So, it was like the best Friday night ever. 

Gin Stephens: Well, good. Now, I've got to go look and see how you were looking on your Instagram photos. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay. [laughs] Ah, man. I don't know. I go to great lengths when I have something I want to do, like meet a man at Whole Foods. [laughs] So, that's my story. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, I have to tell you something funny.  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. Go.  

Gin Stephens: Here I am. Oh, no, I'm logged in as Cleanish Gin. Okay, I was apparently, I'm not following you on Instagram, but that was my other profile, the Cleanish Gin one. 

Melanie Avalon: It's my story from last night where I said Happy Friday. So, that's what I wore. 

Gin Stephens: Okay, anyway, now I'm officially following you in all the places not just the other one, because like, “Why am I not following Melanie? That's so weird. What's wrong with me?” Oh, there you are. Look at that. You look fabulous. 

Melanie Avalon: That was before going to Whole Foods.  

Gin Stephens: There you go. Looking good. Happy Friday. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I felt like in high school. I was so nervous, and I couldn't figure out the pin, and I couldn't swipe the card. It was just--  

Gin Stephens: That's great.  

Melanie Avalon: He was probably like, “What is this girl doing?” So, good times. That's my life. Really brief announcement for listeners. Go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase and get on the email list, because we are signing the contract officially today probably, and starting production Monday.  

Gin Stephens: Fabulous.  

Melanie Avalon: If listeners would like my serrapeptase supplement, or more information about it, or the preorder special, it will probably never be that low of a price again. Go to that link.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I know you're excited.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm very excited.  

Gin Stephens: Well, congratulations.  

Melanie Avalon: Thank you. Was that a crazy story?  

Gin Stephens: No, not at all.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I don't seem like crazy? [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: No, it sounds fun.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay.  

Gin Stephens: [laughs] You want him to see another side of you. Now, he's seen it.  

Melanie Avalon: This is true. This is true. 

Gin Stephens: Next time though, when you're looking all shlumpy--  

Melanie Avalon: Talk to him?  

Gin Stephens: Talk to him. Talk to him then. Yeah, because you know-- 

Melanie Avalon: If I wear a mask--  

Gin Stephens: What do you mean?  

Melanie Avalon: Then, he can't see my face.  

Gin Stephens: Why don't you want him to see your face?  

Melanie Avalon: I don't know.  

Gin Stephens: That's the part that sounds crazy. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Well, he's already seen my face.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, then let him see your face that's not made up.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay.  

Gin Stephens: Your bare face. I promise you. Look, when we were in college, my college roommate and I noticed something funny. When we were all dolled up and going to eat in the cafeteria, everybody's like, “Hey, how you doing?” But let's say we'd been lying out in the sun, and we looked all scruffy, and our hair was back, and we hadn't showered, we had on no makeup, I swear, more guys talk to us than then if we look fancy. I think guys really like a natural look, a lot of guys. They find that attractive. So, be confident that you look attractive in your normal face. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, actually, I think there's one picture on my Instagram where I don't have makeup, and two guys have commented that that's their favorite picture of me on Instagram. 

Gin Stephens: I'm telling you, I'm telling you. We dress up and put on all that makeup, really honestly for other women. Men like a natural look. So, no mask, you let him see your naturalness.  

Melanie Avalon: I promise.  

Gin Stephens: Do it. 

Melanie Avalon: We'll see. I'll report back.  

Gin Stephens: I never forgot that from when I was in college that she was right. My college roommate noticed that. I'm like, “You know what? You're right.” After that, I was never as worried about, "Do I have on makeup or do I not?" and, "Does my hair look good?" I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: Baby steps. The problem is he literally might not realize I'm the same person. So, what if I'm like that and then I reference the card extravaganza, and he's like, “What is she talking about? [laughs] Who is this girl?” 

Gin Stephens: I bet he'll figure it out. I can't imagine that you would look that different. Also, if he can't figure out that's still you, then he's not very smart, and just say goodbye. [laughs] That's my advice. 

Melanie Avalon: True that. All right. Well, anything else new from you?  

Gin Stephens: No. That's all. I'm just enjoying my beach time, getting all tanned, getting some sun.  

Melanie Avalon: Vitamin D.  

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Hanging out with the lizard on my porch, all that stuff.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have some feedback from Andrea, and the subject is "Chronic inflammation getting better quickly." Andrea writes, “Dear Gin and Melanie, I wanted to write and share with you my exciting news. I've struggled with my health for the past four plus years. I got Lyme disease in 2017 that eventually led to fibromyalgia, and autoimmune inflammation, and arthritis, which put me in a vicious cycle of chronic inflammation. I've been in a tremendous amount of pain. Then in January of this year, I got COVID. My body never had a chance to recover before another issue would pop up and keep me inflamed or make me worse. I've tried every supplement to bring down the inflammation and calm my body but nothing worked. I even did hyperbaric oxygen. If I heard of something that was supposed to work for inflammation, I'd try it. I honestly had given up. I not only was in a very unhealthy state with my weight, but really with my health, and I thought I just had to live with it. 

I had always tried to do fasting, but always would fast dirty and it would never work. But with my latest issue in March that threatened to take away my vision, I decided to go cold turkey and fast clean. As an artist, the thought of losing my vision was just too much. This was the thing that finally got me to give up cream and my coffee. I had my CRP, C-reactive protein, and ESR checked in March right before I started fasting clean. Both are indicators of inflammation in the body. Both were very high. CRP was greater than 10. The scale only goes to 10. If you're over that, they don't even give you a number on the lab. My ESR was 45. Both extremely high and concerning. I'm happy to report that I just got my blood work back that I had done in July, and after only a little over four months of fast and clean on a 20:4 schedule, and one long 48-hour fast, my CRP was 4.8. Still high, but coming down quickly.” So, just for listeners, it had been over 10. The scale only goes up to 10. She was over 10. Now, it's 4.8. That is amazing. Then, she says, "My ESR was in the normal range at 14." So, it had been 45, now it's 14. That's incredible. She says, "I feel so good and have a ton of energy. I'm able to exercise and be very active. I've lost some sizes, about two, but I don't know what sort of weight loss I've had, because I really want to focus on the healing and know the weight loss will follow. 

I want to share a bit of my story now to hopefully encourage others out there who are struggling with inflammation, pain, Lyme, and autoimmune, or any type of inflammatory illness. This is the first thing that has really worked for me, and I just want to share it with everyone. Thank you and take care, Andi." Now that's huge, Melanie. The clean fast is really, it's a nonnegotiable. So, she's had that much healing once she finally began fast and clean. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that's an incredible story, and I really wonder, the scale only going to 10, it could have been anything. It could have been even way higher than 10, and it I went down in four months to 4.8. That's amazing. I have not had ESR checked before. Have you?  

Gin Stephens: Not that I know of.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I know InsideTracker that we partner with, check CRP. So, did you get CRP? Have you had that done?  

Gin Stephens: I can't remember. I've done InsideTracker, but it's been a while and I haven't. I don't remember. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm always really obsessive. But checking CRP, that's just really, really wonderful. I love that story, and I love hearing it because a lot of times we hear feedback from people, amazing things like this, but it's just going from not fasting to fasting, but this was her going from dirty fasting to clean fasting and the difference there. 

Gin Stephens: Right. It's really hard for people to wrap their minds around what difference could a little cream make. Because this person says, it's okay, that person says, it's okay. So, you're like, “Well, it's got to be okay. You're clinging to it like a life raft.” [laughs] "Well, this person says it's fine." But honestly, then you let the clean fast take over, and you fast clean, and your body is not having to focus on digesting and working with even that tiny bit of cream. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. A lot of people think that it will make it harder, because whatever they're using during the fast, they think what they're having in the fast making it easier. So, they think the cream and the sweeteners are making it easier. But really on the flip side, it's much easier without it for a lot of people. 

Gin Stephens: Yep, and I hear that over and over again on Intermittent Fasting Stories. People are talking and sharing their story, and they're like, “Yeah, I didn't think that was true. I was doing it the other way, and then I went to the clean fast, and immediately it was better.” I've heard that so many times now. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, we are super, super happy for you, Andi. Thank you so much for writing in. That was a really beautiful, and incredible story, and inspirational. 

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to tell you about one of the sponsors for today's podcast, Audible. Audible is the leading provider of spoken-word entertainment all in one place. At Audible, you can find the largest selection of audiobooks ranging from bestsellers and new releases to celebrity memoirs, languages, business, motivation, and more. As an Audible member, you will get one credit every month good for any title in their entire premium selection. Those titles are yours to keep forever in your Audible library. You'll also get full access to their popular plus catalogue. It's filled with thousands and thousands of audio books, original entertainment, guided fitness and meditation, sleep tracks for better rest, and podcasts, including ad-free versions of many of your favorite shows and exclusive series. All are included with your membership, so you can download and stream all you want. No credits needed to access the plus catalogue.  

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Melanie Avalon: All right, so, we have some more feedback. This comes from Diane. She says, "Just listening to your 226 podcast. You may address this later, but I am walking away for now and I don't want to forget. I wanted to offer some anecdotal info. My friend's son has Type 1 diabetes, and she said in her couple years’ experience, the CGM has a lag time, something like up to 20 minutes. I actually helped to fundraise for a specific service dog that monitors his body chemistry, and it is far more accurate in real time as to blood sugar drops even overnight. Isn't that incredible?" To clarify for listeners, Gin, this dog, it can monitor the blood sugar drops? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, these dogs are amazing. I don't know what, they've got all these different senses you don’t have. I guess. I don't know, maybe you smell different. I've no idea what they're noticing, but yeah. 

Melanie Avalon: I've actually wondered-- this is a tangent really quick, but I've wondered if people with higher blood sugar levels are more sensitive to mosquitoes and stuff like that, because I've noticed, when I had better blood sugar level control, I was impervious to mosquitoes, and getting bit, and then when I felt I started, I don't know, having issues with that, I would get bit and everything. I'd read somebody saying that at some point it had to do with your blood sugar levels. I should go down that rabbit hole.  

Gin Stephens: That's so interesting. Yeah, it wouldn't surprise me. There’s so many things about us that we can't perceive. 

Melanie Avalon: Because I'm guessing-- Okay, this is going to come off as completely awful. This is not true. But when mosquitoes suck your blood, they're using the sugar, right?  

Gin Stephens: I don't know what they're getting. I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, I actually just really quickly googled. Listeners, I have not dived in deep, but it looks like yes, mosquitoes use sugar as a fuel source, but it's probably not the determining factor into why they're attracted to certain people. 

Gin Stephens: You never know though. There might be something if a dog can notice when your blood sugar's dropping, then it certainly is feasible that mosquitoes might be attracted to--  

Melanie Avalon: To something.  

Gin Stephens: Yep. Just because we don't know doesn't mean it's not true.  

Melanie Avalon: True. Okay, the rest of her question, she says, "Anyhow, thought you would like to hear that if you were unaware," and what she's referring to is that there's a lag with the CGM. She says "Also maybe your blood sugar AM spike--" I don't know if she's referring to a listener who wrote in or just in general, but she says, "Also, maybe your blood sugar AM spike is just dawn phenomenon, and not related, but just coincidental with your black coffee." Oh, this is great, because we actually have a question about this later, I think. But yeah, what Diane is referring to, she's referring to continuous glucose monitors that Gin and I talk about a lot on this show. Basically, there are really small sensor that you can just put on to your arm, and it measures the interstitial fluid around yourself, and can give you a reading of your blood sugar levels throughout the day. Yeah, it is understood that there is a lag somewhere between 10 to 20 minutes. So, basically, when you scan your CGM, it's probably what your blood sugar was 10 to 20 minutes ago. If you have a glucometer, like a home blood sugar monitor, you can check it. That is something really good to keep in mind. 

Actually interesting, Gin, I had the call this week or this week, yeah, this week with somebody at ZOE, because well, I'm supposed to start that soon. I'm trying to get up the courage to eat the muffins. But I asked her though if it's measuring, because sometimes the CGM, we've talked about this before, sometimes they are off by 10 points or something, and I asked her if that would affect the results. I need to confirm this with Tim Spector when I interview him. But the representative that I talked to, she said their calculations is just looking at the change, not the absolute values. So, the CGM could be wrong, like it could be off, but because it's not wrong with a difference in how it changes, it shouldn't mess up the ZOE information. 

Gin Stephens: They're looking at the response, how it goes up or down after the input. Yeah, that makes sense. 

Melanie Avalon: That was really cool. If listeners would like to get their own CGM, two links I have. You can go to melanieavalon.com.levelscgm. That will let you skip their waitlist, or you can go to melanieavalon.com/nutritioncgm and the coupon code, MELANIEAVALON, will get you $40 off. Gin, have you got your level CGM, yet? 

Gin Stephens: I've got it. I'm not going to put it on until I get home from the beach. I would rather have it and use it during more of a normal period of time for me versus traveling.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that makes sense. I'm about to put another one on once I start ZOE. So, exciting.  

Gin Stephens: I also want to add, you know, Diane mentioned coincidence with black coffee. That's not a coincidence. When your blood sugar changes after black coffee, that's not a coincidence. It's because we know that black coffee can make your liver dump some glycogen. So, if you see your blood glucose go up after black coffee, that's not a surprise. Remember, it's not coming from the coffee cup. It's coming from within your own body. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, basically, people experiencing spikes in the morning, there are two factors that could be leading to that. It could be making it even more exponential because there's the dawn phenomenon like she spoke about, and then also the black coffee. The dawn phenomenon speaks to a natural inherent circadian-- I guess, it would be an infradian rhythm of cortisol. No, no, no. Ultradian, ultradian. 

Gin Stephens: I don't even know. [laughs] Those words are not words I can use in my vocabulary yet. 

Melanie Avalon: For some reason, I can't get it to stick in my head which is which, but infradian is greater than 30 days and ultradian is less than. So, ultradian. 

Gin Stephens: Circadian is day to day. So, why wouldn't that be circadian, it would, right?  

Melanie Avalon: I said that wrong. 

Gin Stephens: Okay.  

Melanie Avalon: Infradian is greater than a day, I didn't mean to say 30, a day. Circadian is a day 24 hours, ultradian is less than 24 hours.  

Gin Stephens: Wouldn't the dawn phenomenon be circadian?  

Melanie Avalon: No, because it's speaking to the fluctuations of cortisol throughout the day.  

Gin Stephens: But if they happen every morning of the dawn time, wouldn't that be once a day?  

Melanie Avalon: Right, but it's how it's changing, like cortisol changing-- 

Gin Stephens: Well.  

Melanie Avalon: Because cortisol changes throughout the day.  

Gin Stephens: But we're talking about the once-a-day dawn phenomenon. It's not called the dawn and then later on to-- [laughs] Sorry. I'm being persnickety here with my vocabulary.  

Melanie Avalon: I have to google this or think about it more.  

Gin Stephens: But because dawn only happens once a day. 

Melanie Avalon: Right. It's naming one of the peaks of cortisol that happens. Cortisol is changing throughout the day, and there's a peak point known as the dawn phenomenon. Does that make sense? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I would just call something that happened every day around dawn circadian because it's once every 24 and the other peaks would be something else. I don't know. It doesn't really matter. It's just semantics. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, it’s a good question. Ultradian are biological circles occurring within 24 hours. So, that is something that occurs within 24 hours, and the cortisol continues to change after that. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Our bodies are constantly in flux. A lot of our levels flux throughout the day. That's good for people to keep in mind.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. All right, shall we go on to our questions?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: This question comes from Pam. The subject is, "Oh, my gosh, my instant coffee is full of sugar!!!" Pam says, “Hi, Gin. I just thought I'd share something with you that I discovered this morning. I thought my Nescafe instant coffee was just freeze-dried coffee. It says 100% coffee beans on the label, but it is far from it. There is no ingredient list on the jar. You have to google it or scan the barcode for more information. Oh, my gosh, sugar is the first ingredient. There are at least two more types of sugar, palm oil, and some other crap. I thought you'd want to share with your listeners as they too may find they have been spiking insulin all day," then she has a frowny emoji. "I've also got a story to share and it's a doozy. I've had no luck trying to reach you at gin@intarmittentfastingstories.com. Anyway, thanks for all you do,” Pamela. 

Gin Stephens: Let me speak to that last part first, Pamela. You're spelling intermittent wrong. The way that you wrote it there, you've got an A instead of an E. So, you got to spell intermittent with an E instead of the A. That's why so y'all I am available at gina@intermittentfastingstories.com. Now, I don't answer intermittent fasting questions there. So, don't send them to me. Continue to send those to questions at ifpodcast.com. Because I just don't have time unfortunately to answer all the questions, but it has to be spelled the right way. That's a mouthful. I should have just been IF stories. Gin at ifstories.com would have been easier. But no, it's Gin at intermittent with an E fasting stories dotcom. Sigh. Why did I do that? Sometimes, I even spell it wrong when I'm typing it. It's a lot too tight. Typos are difficult. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Have you thought about buying ifstories.com 

Gin Stephens: No, it's not that big of a deal. I think we could figure it out. I get plenty of people getting to me. [laughs] Just check your spelling everybody. That's all I'm saying. Check your spelling. All right. So, yeah, that is absolutely frustrating. I know, because if it says 100% coffee beans, and then when you actually research, you find that that's not what it is. That doesn't seem like it would be illegal. But everybody, check your products. If there's no ingredients list, google and try to find one that way. 

Melanie Avalon: It is frustrating how this happens I think with a lot of products. 

Gin Stephens: Like with wine, for example. We know that they don't have ingredient list. 

Melanie Avalon: They don't even put labels on wine and--  

Gin Stephens: What's in there, we don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: Yep, and it's actually not usually just wine. That really blew my mind when I first learned that. I was like, “Oh.” Listeners, if you ever have wine, and it's particularly some cheap wine, and you notice that it really made your teeth red or purple, it's probably because it has a very common colorizer that is common in conventional wine to make it redder. You'll notice now if you go and have some cheap wine, and your teeth turn a little bit red, that's why. It's not the wine. It's not crazy.  

Gin Stephens: Years ago, over 10 years ago, well before intermittent fasting and us during this podcast, I actually made a decision that I was not going to drink red wine in public anymore because of how crazy my teeth looked. I was like, “I just don't want to look like that in front of people with those crazy red teeth.” So, I do not drink red wine in public anymore. That was what I said to myself. Come to find out when we had Todd White on this podcast, he's like, “It's not the wine, it's the color.” I'm like “What?” Anyway, I still won't drink those wines in public, but I also won't drink those wines in private. Red wine, it's either Dry Farm Wines or I'm not drinking it. 

Melanie Avalon: If listeners would like Dry Farm Wines like us, they can go to dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast and get a bottle for a penny. My order just came yesterday. I get so excited when my new order comes. Did you know, Gin, they also label the amount of sugar on the back? 

Gin Stephens: Yes, I did know that.  

Melanie Avalon: It's very cool.  

Gin Stephens: Because I look at the back. I always want to know where it's from, what country, what they have to you know, that sort of thing for everyone that they send.  

Melanie Avalon: I really liked how they label it like that.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, they didn't used to do it. Their labels have changed since they used to way, and also their wines have gotten better over time. When we first started-- when did we first start partnering with them? Was it 2017, has it been that long?  

Melanie Avalon: It was forever ago.  

Gin Stephens: t's been a long time. But when we first started, their wines were a little more obscure, and I don't want to say weirder, that sounds bad, but the quality is noticeably better now. As they've gotten bigger, the wines have gotten better. You know what I mean? Every now and then, a long time ago, when we first started the wine, I'd be like, “This one's a little weird.” 

Melanie Avalon: I'm so glad you said that. I hadn't really thought about that, but yeah, when I first started, the whites I actually always really liked, but the reds sometimes were a little watery. I didn't mind drinking them, but I wouldn't know if always there would be a wine I want to like bring to a dinner. But now, they're always amazing. 

Gin Stephens: Of course, if you find one that you don't like it, they do offer refunds if you don't like them. At any time, you can just contact them and say no, that one was a dud. They will take care of you. But for anybody who tried it a long time ago when we first started, and they're like, “Yeah, they were weird. I didn't like them,” well, really, I've noticed a difference now. Now, there's never a dud.  

Melanie Avalon: I have too.  

Gin Stephens: Try again, anybody who tried it and was like, well, there's might not be for me. Try it again. 

Melanie Avalon: If you're actually a white wine drinker, I think the white wines are just incredible. If you're like a sweet wine, they're not going to be super sweet is the thing, they're really fantastic.  

Gin Stephens: If you think you must have the sweet ones, train your palate to break away from that and it will surprise you. I used to think I liked the sweet ones way back in the day. Now, I realized I don't. 

Melanie Avalon: It's so nice because I used to shy away from white wines, because I wouldn't know if they would be too sweet. But the Dry Farm Wines ones are just, they're really nice. Then the reds are-- especially, today like you said are just I love them. Body wise, they tend to be on the lighter side for reds, but they're very complex and nuanced, and some are earthy, some are minerally, some are fruity, might I can talk wine all day.  

Gin Stephens: What When Wine, that's one-third of it right there.  

Melanie Avalon: If there's a certain type of wine you like, say, you're hearing this and you're like, “Oh, well, I really like heavy-bodied cabs," if you email them, you can request for them to make a custom box for you of whatever type you like. So, if you do want heavier reds for example, just email them and say, “Hey, can you send me a box of full-bodied reds?" and they'll customize it for you.  

Gin Stephens: Awesome. Great tip.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I gave the link right for the free bottle.  

Gin Stephens: Give it again.  

Melanie Avalon: dryfarmwhines.com/ifpodcast. 

Gin Stephens: It really is worthwhile. I just can't believe how much it is. I wish you could just go anywhere and buy any wine. [laughs] But you can't.  

Melanie Avalon: If you're my friend, you now basically get Dry Farm Wines for your birthday if you're a wine drinker. This is perfect, because the next question relates to something we just talked about. 

Gin Stephens: Absolutely. So, this is fun Bill and the subject is "Blood glucose." Bill says, “Ladies, I enjoy your podcast. I don't get the feeling a lot of men are doing IF, but might be wrong.” Bill, you are wrong. There are a lot of men doing IF or a lot of men, a lot of men. There might even be more men doing it than women. I just feel maybe more women join the groups.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that's a good question. I would love to know--  

Gin Stephens: A lot of men, they just do it. They don't need a group, they just join. They just start. 

Melanie Avalon: I guess a lot of the ones that are at the gym, and you know where they're all about the macros in the diet, but in general, they don't talk about their diet as much as women do. 

Gin Stephens: Let me think about just my family and the people that are related to me, just the people who are related to me that are doing it. My brother-in-law's doing it, my brother is doing it, Chad does it, my sister-in-law does it. But notice how many of the people I just named are men. It's mostly the men in my life are all doing it. Cal used to do it. Now, he doesn't. Will does it. In my personal life, more of the men that are related to me than the women do intermittent fasting.  

Anyway, yeah, lots of men. They're just not joining groups. They just quietly do it. [laughs] All right, so, although there are plenty of men in the groups, and hello to all of you who are there. I'm glad you're there. He goes on to say, “My doctor suggested IF and it's really working. I started my wife on it, and she is also succeeding. My question relates to blood glucose. I'm 60 and not a diabetic. I'm now doing a 20:4, last meal by 6 PM. But when I wake up and test my blood, it's 102 to 107, then drops as the morning goes on as I continue my fast. What's up with that? What's raising the glucose? Is this normal? Thanks." 

Melanie Avalon: Yes, this was perfect, because we just discussed this earlier, but there are two factors that primarily lead to higher blood sugars in the morning. One is the dawn effect. The natural ultradian rhythm of cortisol. What's happening there is cortisol is prompting the liver to release its stored glucose in the form of glycogen into the bloodstream. So, you're just releasing endogenous blood sugar that you already have in you. I might have to fact check that because it might also perform gluconeogenesis. So, it might actually create blood sugar. 

Gin Stephens: Are you creating if you already have plenty in your liver, would your body wouldn't create it if you had some? 

Melanie Avalon: I actually don't know, because my weird, random obsession with gluconeogenesis. I don't know why, but I'm very much fascinated by it, and the gluconeogenesis process, from what I understand, doesn't line up necessarily black and white with the level of glucose that you have either from your food or already stored. It's thought that-- like I said, I need to research it even more, but I think overdoing gluconeogenesis when you actually don't need to be doing it is a major factor related to diabetes. I think it's possible you could be engaging in gluconeogenesis even with topped-off glycogen tanks.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I just don't know. I would think that your body wouldn't, but I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: Like metformin and berberine, one of the proposed mechanisms of action is that it's stopping that pathway.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. It's like a healthy body wouldn't be doing that probably, right.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly.  

Gin Stephens: But that would be part of those if you were already going down that metabolic route and problems, that would make more sense. 

Melanie Avalon: I think so. And then, I was reading a study, and I'm trying to remember. I was reading a study this week actually, where this came up again, and it was-- Trying remember what I was reading about, but it was talking about the levels of gluconeogenesis while fasted versus after you eat, and how in some people it can basically be the same. That process can basically just be going on. I should probably just do a whole episode on it.  

Yeah, so point being with the natural cortisol rhythm, there's a motivation in the morning for the body to produce or release blood sugar, so that can lead to your higher levels, and then on top of that coffee can also stimulate this. So, yes, it is normal. It's good that it's going down because he says that it drops. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's true. Do you have any men or very many men in your Facebook groups?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, probably what I've noticed is there are but I feel like they don't talk as much. I should look at the stats. I'm sure there's a way. You would know this better than me, Gin, if there's a way to just look at the-- 

Gin Stephens: There absolutely is a way. That's how I know.  

Melanie Avalon: Is it a quick check?  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's in the admin area. I can't remember what to click on, but in the admin panel, there's some things to look at where you can click it. You can see where people are from, that was always interesting, like the countries, and the cities, and then you can see the percentage by gender. And also, they break it down by age. 

Melanie Avalon: My Facebook group IF Biohackers, well, that is not what I would have thought. So, it's 92% female, 8% male. 

Gin Stephens: That's actually larger percent male I think than some of my groups.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really?  

Gin Stephens: Yes. That's actually a pretty high percentage of males. It was always over 90% of women. Again, I don't know if that's a function of just women being more likely in general to join a Facebook group or maybe just the fact that they were so women focused that the men just maybe came in and said, “Oh, wait, this is all women, and maybe not,” but we always had a strong core group of men that stayed around, and posted, and I appreciated hearing from them. I loved having the male members in the groups. I didn't want to have an all-woman group, [laughs] but it just shook out that way. It wasn't purposeful. So, thank you to all the men who were actively contributing to the group's back but before I left Facebook, because there were a lot of amazing men there that I got to know, that worked as moderators in the group and that thing. Their voices were valuable, and I consider them an important part of the community, especially those men that are confident enough to walk into a group full of 90% something women and just engage. I loved it. 

Melanie Avalon: Do you know what's interesting? My CGM Facebook group. I have another Facebook group called Lumen, Biosense & CGMs: Carbs, Fat, Ketones & Blood Sugar. It's the exact same percent. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that doesn't surprise me. I wonder probably a lot of the people are in both of them. It's very similar, the same people. 

Melanie Avalon: My Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare group is 99% women.  

Gin Stephens: That's not a surprise either.  

Melanie Avalon: 1% male. So, fun times.  

Gin Stephens: Although they do have amazing men's products. Beautycounter has a great men's products. 

Melanie Avalon: My dad just, because at Christmas I gave him all the things, and he just told me that he ran out and he needs more, because they were really great products. I’m like, “I got you covered.” My uncle told me the same thing. So, great, Counterman is their line. So, ladies, if you ever need presence for men in your life, that's actually a really great gift. 

Gin Stephens: It really is. Because you know men are hard to buy for, especially, the men in my life, I don't know what it is about that. But I guess they all are probably if mine are that hard to buy for, but yeah, get them the man's collection, and it's just really good stuff because they deserve clean beauty-- Well, I don't want to say beauty. They deserve clean skincare also and products.  

Melanie Avalon: Wine and skincare, and we're good for presents.  

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Melanie Avalon: All right, so, shall we go on to our next question?  

Gin Stephens: Absolutely.  

Melanie Avalon: This question comes from Theresa. The subject is "Hungry after six months on clean IF." Teresa says, “Hello, ladies. Absolutely, love your podcast. I've only just started listening. So, bingeing at the moment.” She means bingeing on the episodes. She says, “I'm only up to Episode 25. So, you may have answered this in the upcoming episodes. I've been following a fasting lifestyle on and off for almost two years. For the last six months, I've been clean fasting. My fasting windows change with variations of 17:7 to 23:1 depending on what's happening in my life, but my window is always in the evening. I generally aim for a four-hour window of 3 PM to 7 PM one meal a day. I eat good food, homemade nutrient-dense meals, and I avoid processed food for the most part. I drink wine occasionally. I don't follow any special regimen. I'm not paleo, keto, or vegetarian.  

Just recently, I found that I'm getting hungry and this is new. I've been fat adapted for a while, and enjoy the energy, and I'm usually ready to eat around 3 PM or 4 PM. I'm now hungry in the morning after my usual black tea, and I'm struggling making it through to 3 PM. I thought it may be the tea, so I switched to water with no difference. I'm still hungry around 9 AM. I'm wondering what's happening. I've recently returned to full-time work after eight months off, and I was wondering if I'm just needing more food as I'm more active now. I'm not worrying too much about weight loss although I am still bigger than I want to be, I know I'm getting smaller, so, I'm just going with the flow. I want the health benefits more than the weight loss. I will change my window this week to a 17:7 two meal a day temporarily to see if it helps. Could it be that I'm depleted in something? I'm not sure how to manage this. I want to get back to normal ASAP. Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated. Many thanks, Theresa." 

Gin Stephens: There's so much that could be making you feel temporarily hungrier. One clue is that you just changed your routine. You're back to work after eight months off and now that seems to be coinciding with you being hungrier and you're more active now. So, that could be it. You said that you're bigger than you want to be. So, I don't really know what-- There's a big difference between like, “Oh, you'd like to lose five more pounds versus you'd like to lose 50 more pounds.” Let's say, you only want to lose 5, 10 more pounds. It's possible that your body has reached a point where it's really, really happy, and you're at a healthy, ideal weight for your body even though your mind might want to lose a little bit more. In which case, your body's naturally ramping up the hunger because it's ready to maintain instead of lose more. So, that could be it. If you still have 50 pounds to go, that wouldn't be as much something to think about.  

Really, the fact that you're just back to work and have a new routine, I think, could be a lot of it. You just have to be your own study of one and see what you can do. It also depends on the kind of hunger that you're experiencing. If you're feeling shaky, and nauseous, and like, “Oh my gosh, I have to eat,” that's different. That's physically you need to eat. But if it's just a little bit, “Oh, I’m feeling a little more hungrier,” that doesn't mean you have to eat. Just ignore it, see what happens, and 30 minutes after that first wave a hunger, do you feel better? Because that's usually what happens for me. I went for a long walk on the beach yesterday, and when I came back in, I was hungry. That was 11 in the morning or something and it wasn't time for me to eat, but I had just done a lot of activity. But I ignored it, didn't eat, then I recorded a podcast from here at the beach. Then, I got busy and did some shopping, and then it was like 5:30 and I still hadn't eaten yet. I just forgot that I'd been hungry, and I was like, “Oh, after I finish this podcast, I'm going to eat because I'm so hungry.” Then, I went and ran an errand, and then I forgot I was hungry, because I was busy. 

So, really just pay attention to the kind of hunger. Is it the shaky, nauseous, “Oh, my gosh, I have to eat” hunger that's different than, “Wow, I'm hunger than I had been being” which does pass? So, be your study of one, keep experimenting, and see what feels right to you. 

Melanie Avalon: I love everything that you said there. This might be a situation where Theresa might find some insight from wearing a CGM, because it would be interesting to see, when you're experiencing this hunger, are you getting hypoglycemic? Is your blood sugar dropping? I think one of the most fascinating things that people can experience with CGMs is realizing how their perception of hunger may or may not correlate to, ironically, low or even potentially high blood sugar levels. So, maybe getting a CGM and seeing what happens after you eat, what happens when you fast, and then with that-- I know she eats nutrient-dense foods and not a lot of processed foods, but playing around with the foods that you're eating might also help. If you've never tried keto, that works really well for some people with hunger. For some people, that gets rid their hunger. Some people, they're always hungry. So, it's just something that if you haven't tried it, that might be something really interesting to try and see if that helps with your hunger. I would not suggest trying vegetarian for hunger. 

Gin Stephens: I don't know. Now, seriously, though, there are a lot of people who feel great vegetarian. I'm one of those people. When I eat more vegetarian versus when I ate keto, the difference is striking. Just FYI.  

Melanie Avalon: Do you eat completely vegetarian for more than a few days in a row?  

Gin Stephens: Probably. I don't really think about it. Here at the beach, I'm more likely to be vegetarian a lot of the time. When I say vegetarian, I'm not vegan, obviously. I guess I had eggs. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: But I don't always have eggs. Eggs and beans, I get plenty of protein. But you can be vegetarian and still get plenty of protein just without animal meat, you know?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I definitely think you can. Maybe for Theresa, she's the type that her gut microbiome can really utilize a vegetarian diet. I feel like from a large amount of people, protein provides a lot of satiety, and not everybody has the gut setup to really thrive on vegetarian. Some people do. It just won't to be my first choice of something to try, but definitely try it. Maybe, it is the thing. [laughs] Maybe, it is the thing that would make you. So, I'm glad he said that. In any case, I would really focus on-- For hunger, I would really focus on protein. 

Gin Stephens: Well, she says, she eats homemade nutrient-dense meals. It sounds like she's getting great nutrients. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I just mean focusing on protein specifically for--  

Gin Stephens: Satiety?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. But I like what you said, Gin about when it lines up with her big change. So, I think that's probably a big factor. 

Gin Stephens: When something changes and you notice other things are different, it's usually something is causing that. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. All right, so, we have a question from Allie. The subject is "Alternate day fasting." Allie says, Hi, Gin and Melanie, I started listening to both of you after I had my first baby in 2018, and I learned about fasting. I had to stop breastfeeding sooner than I would have liked. I had my second baby in November 2020, and I'm back to fasting since I sadly," again, she had to stop breastfeeding sooner than she would have liked. "When I first started fasting a few years ago, I fasted 19 to 20 hours every day, and had amazing results, and even better, I felt amazing. In the last few weeks, I have started 36-hour fast, because I just wasn't feeling great doing 20 hours like I did before and was not getting results. The ADF has been going well so far, and I am seeing the scale move again. 

My question. I know that both of you stick to 19 to 20 hours and that is your preference. Most of the people who write in also seem to fast this long, and I've listened to podcasts where you answered questions about longer fasts. Both of you always answer that longer does not necessarily mean better. I think I am misinterpreting your answers, and I have it in my head that you don't support longer fasts. Please, please correct me if my assumption is wrong. Is there a reason for why you say longer is not better? Do you still support ADF even though it isn't either of your preference? I would love to hear. Thank you for all the work that you do. It truly keeps me inspired and going. Intermittent fasting has changed my life. Much love from Canada, Allie." 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's a great question, and let's analyze that word, ‘better.’ Longer doesn't necessarily mean better. But that doesn't mean we think it's worse. So, really unpack what I just said and think about it. Let's say someone's fasting for 20 hours consistently, and they're not getting the results, maybe longer would be a good strategy for them. We don't say that it's always necessarily better. Keep that in mind. So, if you're a listener of the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast, and if you're not, I would encourage you to listen, I have many stories of people who do an alternate day fasting approach and a lot of them are like, “Oh, gosh, I was scared to do it. Then, I decided to do it, and it's been amazing.” So, we hear that all the time from people who really love it. If you read Fast. Feast. Repeat, I've got a whole section in there on ADF, a whole chapter. If I did not support it, I wouldn't have put it in there if I thought it was bad. I actually do have a section in Fast. Feast. Repeat where I caution you against doing fasts 72 hours and beyond unless you're under medical supervision, and I'm very specific in Fast. Feast. Repeat that these longer fasts are not recommended for weight loss according to what I have found in the research. 

In Fast. Feast. Repeat, I wouldn't have put it, like I said, if I didn't recommend it. So, I absolutely recommend it for anyone who feels great using that approach. I like to eat every day. That's my personal preference. I know many people who feel great on an alternate daily fasting approach or even I have a section in there where I talk about what I named the hybrid approach, where instead of a strict alternate daily fasting, where it's up day-down day, up day-down day, alternating like that, or even a 5:2, instead a hybrid approach where sometimes you have a down day followed by an up day, then the next day might be 19:5, and you really just mix it up to suit you. Just because I personally feel better eating every day doesn't mean that I think that's the approach everyone should follow. Whenever I say or we say, longer doesn't necessarily mean better, that doesn't mean that it's worse either. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I thought that was a beautiful answer. I'll just share my thoughts on the longer fasting. Basically, for me, I think that the benefits of intermittent fasting a lifestyle for weight loss and for the health benefits. It's practiced-- There's that circadian word. I don't know if that's the right word for this. It’s practiced with a daily fast, and if it seemingly not working, I believe for most people, the sustainable answer is not to necessarily fast more, that there's much more potential that can be achieved by tweaking what you're eating, and then continuing with the same amount of fasting. The phrase more is better or more isn't better, I think it's just because we're trying to discourage this idea that if people aren't getting the results that they desire, the automatic thought is, “Oh, I just need to fast more.” That's just a slippery and misleading slope, because that's probably not the answer, and it can often backfire. So, I think that's what we're trying to discourage people from falling into.  

When it comes to longer fasts, I think they're really great. I don't think that their “purpose” is the purpose that people who find themselves in the situation turn to them for. So, like Gin said, they're not for weight loss.  

Gin Stephens: Well, the ADF is for weight loss.  

Melanie Avalon: Sorry, yeah. I'm talking about longer fasts, like multiday fasts.  

Gin Stephens: Extended, when you get out of the ADF paradigm, yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, this is not ADF. I’m talking about extended fasting, I think they have a lot of benefits, things like complete digestion resets, or stem cell activation, or cellular cleanse, kind of things like Dr. Valter Longo talks about with his work, it's not for weight loss. That's my thoughts on the extended fasting. It's more for like healing. 

Gin Stephens: Right. Extended fasting, not for weight loss. Alternate daily fasting, great for weight loss. But you have to feel good in the pattern. How do you know it's not right for you? If you ever start feeling the urge to binge, that's a sign that what you're doing is not right for you and your body, it needs you to switch it up. 

Melanie Avalon: It's a thing for me where I probably don't recommend ADF. I could recommend it as something to try, but I can't recommend it with a passionate testimonial, because for me, it doesn't work for me. But it is something to try, and I'm not against it in any way. Gin and I both have sections on it in our books. 

Gin Stephens: I actually did it for a couple months back in 2016. Yes, in the spring of 2016, it was right after The Obesity Code came out. The reason I switched to it is because, you read The Obesity Code, and in the back, that's what he's got. It's alternate daily fasting. I'm like, “Oh, that's what he has in the back. I'm going to try that now.” [laughs] So, I did it. It's a great strategy for lowering insulin even more, because you're fasting longer, and then you have that up day that keeps your human metabolism from adapting. So, it's a great strategy if you know you're insulin resistant, and you really want to target that, or if you've been doing the daily eating window approach, and you feel like your body might have adapted. Let's say, you felt great on 23:1, and you've been doing 23:1, and it's been wonderful, and you've done it for a few months. Then all of a sudden, oop, scale is at a screeching halt, you're not losing any more weight, you may need to shake it up with there's a little bit of an alternate daily fasting approach. That doesn't mean you have to do full on every other day. You could throw in a couple of down days a week followed by a couple of up days, and that might be enough to get that metabolism going. Again, the up days are so important when you're doing that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I'm really glad we got this question from Allie though, because I think it's nice to clear up our thoughts on all of this. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, because sometimes, we can say something and people interpret it. “Oh, well, you don't like ADF," but that's not it at all.” Somebody sent an email, we’re not answering it today, but just this past week, where they like said, I was hostile to keto or something-- [laughs] Did you read that one? That's so interesting that someone has listened in and come away with the idea that I'm hostile to any eating style, because I'm not. Just because an eating style doesn't work for my body, doesn't mean I don't believe it's completely right for somebody else's body. So, every time I say that keto didn't work for me, that is not me secretly telling somebody that it was not going to work for them. 

Melanie Avalon: Same with me. What I was saying earlier about vegetarian, I don't think it works for a lot of people, but if it works for you, it works for you. I think Gin and I both are just about finding what works for you, and we're not wedded to you doing any one thing. 

Gin Stephens: I think it's the difference between if people are just listening to the podcast versus if they've read my books. If you've read the books, you can say, “Oh, she does talk about ADF in there and recommend it,” or “Oh, she does say find the way that works for you, and if you're insulin resistant, you may need to lower your carbs.” So, if you just hear the title of my book, Delay, Don't Deny or hear me say keto didn't work for me, you might be really confused. [laughs] I've got a lot more behind the scenes in the books.  

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Context and nuance.  

Gin Stephens: Absolutely, yes. 

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode231. The show notes will have a full transcript and links to everything that we talked about. You can also get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike, and you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast, I'm @melanieavalon, and Gin is @ginstephens, and I think that is all the things. All right. Anything from you, Gin, before we go? 

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it and I'll talk to you next week.  

Melanie Avalon: I will talk to you next week. Bye.  

Gin Stephens: Bye. 

Melanie Avalon: Thank you so much for listening to The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember that everything discussed on the show is not medical advice. We're not doctors. You can also check out our other 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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Sep 12

Episode 230: Reversing PCOS, Body Fat Percentage, Measuring Glucose, CGM Vs. Glucometer, Fasting Insulin, Meal Timing, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 230 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast, hosted by Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine and Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living An Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

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TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 230 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. 

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One more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds including endocrine disrupters, which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. When you're putting on your conventional skincare and makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body. 

Thankfully, there's an easy, easy solution to this. There's a company called Beautycounter and they were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient in their products is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, you can actually feel good about what you put on. And on top of that, their products actually work. That's because they're not “all natural.” They actually combined the best of both worlds, both synthetic and natural ingredients, to create products that actually support the health of your skin and make your skin look amazing. They have skincare lines for all your skin types, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, antiaging and brightening peels and vitamin C serums, and incredible makeup. If you see my makeup on Instagram, that's all Beautycounter. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter 

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

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 230 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: Well, I'm at the beach but I haven't had a chance to enjoy the beach yet, because I've been working so hard, trying to move stuff from the house to the condo and the condo to the house. And Lord, it's like I'm moving. I mean it's moving. I've been working really hard. Such a good workout. I am, of course, doing it all in the fasted state. And, yeah, I've used all my muscles. Today, I had something funny happened here at the house. I was trying to change a lightbulb in the ceiling fixture in the bathroom because I had two lightbulbs in it and I noticed one of them was out and I was just going around doing things. You know how you unscrew like the little metal at the bottom of the glass dome and then the glass dome comes off, then you change the lightbulb and you put that back on and screw it back together? 

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I always get scared when I do it.  

Gin Stephens: Well, you should be scared because today, the beach, everything rusts at the beach. I was unscrewing, unscrewing, unscrewing, unscrewing, and actually, I wasn't unscrewing the little nut that holds it together. It was unscrewing the entire light fixture. So, the whole thing came out. It was just dangling there by the wiring. I'm like, “Okay, this is interesting.” So, [sighs] long story, I went all around, the people at Lowe's, they were great. The guys were like, “Alright, let's try spraying this stuff on it,” they went over-- and anyway, they couldn't get it apart. I was just going to buy like a new piece, but apparently you can't just buy a new piece. So, they sent me to this hardware store, and the guy had this vise and this equipment and he managed to unscrew the rusted unscrew. I came back and put it back together.  

Melanie Avalon: Good job.  

Gin Stephens: I know, I felt so accomplished. And I put in LED lightbulbs, and they're supposed to last for 10 years. So, 10 years from now, I'm just going to call an electrician to come and put a whole new light fixture in. This light fixture is now abandoned. [laughs] Anyway, I felt so good that I did it. But people are so helpful. 

Melanie Avalon: I always get scared screwing in the light bulb because you don't know if it's on. So, I like screw it in and I hold it really far away. I know I could just unplug the unit, but normally I don't want to do that. Do you know what I'm talking about? I hold it really far from my face and I squint and I screw it.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm not even worried about screwing in a lightbulb to a light fixture because you're not touching the metal part. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm always scared is going to pop or something because that's a good question. Maybe that's why I'm scared. Maybe it happened once.  

Gin Stephens: I wouldn't worry about that.  

Melanie Avalon: I've definitely had it pop while holding it in my hand and it scares me. 

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, I'm not scared of lightbulbs, but I'm now terrorized about-- and then the other bathroom, the light bulb in there, I can tell it's got two lightbulbs, and one of them needs to be changed because it's not on. I was like, “Well, let me just try to unscrew the bottom of this one just and see.” No, it wouldn't even turn on, I'm like, “Forget it.”  

Melanie Avalon: All of them are like that.  

Gin Stephens: Everything at the beach gets rusty. It is true. It is a different kind of place. 

Melanie Avalon: Can I make a confession about lightbulbs?  

Gin Stephens: Sure.  

Melanie Avalon: In middle school, I think, probably my biggest crush of-- what's it called, like grade school years? 

Gin Stephens: Elementary school? 

Melanie Avalon: Like pre-college. What do you call all of it collectively? 

Gin Stephens: K-12?  

Melanie Avalon: Is there not a word?  

Gin Stephens: I'm not sure what phase you're talking about, like what part of it? 

Melanie Avalon: Kindergarten through 12th grade. What do you call that? 

Gin Stephens: Just K-12. We just say K-12.  

Melanie Avalon: K-12 means all of that?  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, from kindergarten to 12th grade. We usually distinct it by what phase of it. 

Melanie Avalon: You think there'll be one word that means elementary school, middle school and high school.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, we just usually say K-12.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, well. 

Gin Stephens: I'm a teacher, so I'm like, “What is the word? There's got to be a word. Why am I not thinking of the word either?” I don't know. We just say K-12, because we usually just break it down more. We've got undergraduate, that's college, but I don't know. 

Melanie Avalon: But I don’t want to break it down. My biggest crush from that entire K-12, yes. [laughs] I've never heard the phrase, K-12. Okay, my biggest crush from K-12, I'm just going to say it, his name is Jordan Watts. And me and my friend Emily Stock-- Oh, I don't know if I should say names. I know she listens to the show.  

Gin Stephens: I think it's fun to say names.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay. [laughs] I know she listens to this show.  

Gin Stephens: I haven't heard the story yet, though.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, well, I know she listened to this show, because she wrote in once. And I was like, “Wait, Emily? Is this Emily?” Emily, if you're listening, I hope you don't mind me sharing this. We were obsessed with a boy whose last name was Watts, and we called him Lightbulb. And we would just call him Lightbulb and draw lightbulbs.  

Gin Stephens: That was the code name for him, was light bulb? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Whenever I hear lightbulb, I think of that. 

Gin Stephens: Well, that's funny.  

Melanie Avalon: I think he's married now. 

Gin Stephens: Good times. It's been a very lightbulb day. I also changed on all the halogen lightbulbs in the house because, Lord, they're hot, halogen. They're so hot. We had undercounter lighting that were halogen the you stick in with the little pins, and the plates in the cabinets were hot, because the halogen lightbulbs were so hot. I found these LED replacements that worked, also at Lowe's. Lowe's is amazing. I just wander around Lowe's and ask the people that work there to help me do things and they're great. I'm like, “Hey, I don't know what to do. I have this, I need something else, help me.”  

Melanie Avalon: That's what I do.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. And they're awesome, they're so helpful. 

Melanie Avalon: I really recommend that color-changing lightbulbs.  

Gin Stephens: I don't want any colors.  

Melanie Avalon: That's how I make my whole room red and pink at night.  

Gin Stephens: I just like normal colors. I want it to just be light.  

Melanie Avalon: But then, you can make your whole evening no blue light.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm not going to do all that.  

Melanie Avalon: Honestly, it's probably one of the best changes I've made in my apartment for my sleep. 

Gin Stephens: I've got a lot of rooms in my house, and we go from room to room. That would be a lot. 

Melanie Avalon: Actually, I just put them into two of my lamps, and so at night, I just turn on those two lamps and they're pink.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. 

Melanie Avalon: And then, I turn on my Joovvs.  

Gin Stephens: So, you’re lighting your way with the Joovv?  

Melanie Avalon: Uh-huh. It's great. 

Gin Stephens: I know that all your photos on Instagram are always pink. The light is glowing. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I like the glow.  

Gin Stephens: Anyway, I'm like a home improvement girl. So, I could totally do that. I could do anything. I could put in-- 

Melanie Avalon: You could. I support.  

Gin Stephens: It's amazing what you do when your husband is not here, because Chad would have handled all that. [laughs] He would have been the one, like, “Why is this broken?” Instead, it was me. 

Melanie Avalon: I always get really proud of myself when I fix something that would have been fixed by my dad. And I'm like, “Oh, look at my new skill.”  

Gin Stephens: Exactly. We can do it.  

Melanie Avalon: Because when you're a kid, you're so in awe of how your parents know how to do everything, and then you realize it's just because you acquire these miscellaneous skills over the years. 

Gin Stephens: Well, and watching the people that come, and when we're having the work done in our house and the people that work for the companies that are doing these things, I'm like, “They don't have a magical skill set. They had to learn how to do it.” I'm as smart as them. I can do it. If they can learn how to screwing a light fixture, I can learn how to screwing a light fixture. Although the guy at Lowe's was hilarious, the guy in the lighting section. I was talking to him about how I couldn't get it apart. He's like, “Well, I don't really know. I'm not an electrician.” I said, “I think unscrewing this from this nut is not really electrical work.” [laughs] Most of it is just finding the parts that go together and put them together. Anyway. 

Melanie Avalon: Fun times.  

Gin Stephens: It was. It's been fun, but I'm ready to be done. My friend, Michelle, is coming to visit me on Thursday. So, trying to get all the work part done. So, then we can relax.  

Melanie Avalon: Very nice.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. What's up with you? 

Melanie Avalon: Yesterday, I was on Brad Kearns podcast. It's always surreal when I go on those show. He coauthors all of the books with Mark Sisson, like all the Primal Blueprint books, and The Keto Reset Diet and all of those books, and he cohosts Primal Blueprint Podcast with Elle Russ, and I've been on that show. But I don't know, I feel it's moments like those where I'm just like, “I've come a long way.” The reason I really feel that is because I'm super excited to be on it, but it's not this huge thing. In the past, myself 10 years ago would have been freaking out about any of the individual interviews I have now. And it's just like, “Oh. I'm just showing up.” 

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I was just on the radio, and I didn't even tell anybody. It's at the point where I'm just doing, it's just so routine. You're not like, “Oh, my gosh, I'm going to be on the radio.” 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I don't want to make it seem I'm complacent or that I take it for granted, I don't at all. I realize when I have these moments how far I've come and how the barometer has changed for my goals. 

Gin Stephens: This is our job. Our job is talking to people on different media outlets. It's just making that shift to like, “Yeah, this is what I do. I talk to people for other people to listen to.” My elementary teachers, all of my K-12 teachers, in fact, to pull out that K-12 again, they knew I was going to do something with talking and here I am. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, here we are.  

Gin Stephens: Talking for our living.  

Melanie Avalon: Now, the goal is the TV show. I would like to be at a place in the future where I'm just showing up for my TV show, and I'm like, “Oh, just another day.” 

Gin Stephens: Just another day on your TV show. Yeah, fabulous. I hope you get a TV show. I do not want a TV show. Although I do think that Clean(ish) would make a great TV show.  

Melanie Avalon: I agree.  

Gin Stephens: I've never wanted to be on a TV show, but I'm a teach her, I can do it. But I think it would be a great TV show like Marie Kondo went around and helped people, say, “I love you.” “Thank you for serving me,” to the things that we're getting rid of, or whatever.  

Melanie Avalon: Or it could be a docuseries.  

Gin Stephens: Well, that's true, but I would like to go into people's homes and help them. That's the way I was picturing it. See, I am more like, “Let me help you figure out your house.” I don't want to do a docuseries, that is a big no. Like an expose, kind of thing, like, no. 

Melanie Avalon: No, docuseries is, it's like a documentary in a TV show format. 

Gin Stephens: Well, I know. I know what it is. But we're talking about the issues, like the science behind it, I don't want to do that. You can do the docuseries, that's your boat. You go sail on the docuseries boat. I want to help people look at what's under their cabinets. I'm like in the nitty gritty. That's me. I'm at the application phase. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: We could do a lot of TV shows between us.  

Gin Stephens: We could. You do the science part. I like the science part. I understand the science part, but I don't want that. I don't want to do docuseries. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, I really want to do a talk show. That's what I really want to do. Like the podcast now, but as a talk show with a live studio audience. Oh, I’ll be so excited. I could see the audience. 

Gin Stephens: I feel like I could do that because that's what teaching is. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I would just love that. Okay, can I make a brief announcement?  

Gin Stephens: Please do.  

Melanie Avalon: So, last episode, I said that I had only briefly read the serrapeptase COVID study. So, I actually sat down and read the rest of it. I'm just in shock because this is my first time sitting down and actually reading extensively the literature on serrapeptase. It really is a wonder compound. I'm shocked it hasn't been taken by the pharmaceutical industry and made into a drug.  

Gin Stephens: Can they do that, though?  

Melanie Avalon: That's why I'm not sure. This is the way I think that they could. I want to put this out to the universe. But I feel if the pharmaceutical industry finds something that they normally can't make into a drug, because there are the rules about-- 

Gin Stephens: Because it's unpatentable. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. But I think what they can do is try to make studies to show that it's unsafe as a supplement, and then get it regulated that way, and then turn it into a drug. There's a conspiracy theory out there that that's what's happening right now with-- There's some compound that normally would be a supplement, but now all of a sudden, there are all these studies saying that it's unsafe. What is it? Robb Wolf actually had an episode all about this. It's NAC, so that's something that used to be you could just buy, but now the FDA is turning it into, I think, requiring prescriptions. I think that's the route that could be taken. It's interesting, because the article I was reading about serrapeptase and COVID, they're basically proposing that serrapeptase be made into a pharmaceutical to help treat COVID and it's published in a clinical journal. I'll link to it in the show notes, but they go into all the mechanisms of action, all of the different things that it could do, specifically with COVID and inflammation and with the mucus, and there's so many things it can do, but then beyond that just its anti-inflammatory potential, its antioxidant potential, and it really doesn't have side effects.  

From listeners, the biggest side effect I hear, some people get GI distress from it. It's hard for me to know if it's actually the serrapeptase or if it's the brand they're taking, but in any case, I am obviously a huge fan, but now I'm even more of a huge fan. For listeners, I will be making my own pretty soon. So, you can get on the preorder list and definitely get on the preorder list because the email list almost has the amount of people that we're going to do for the preorder. So, I anticipate the preorder is probably going to sell out. It's going to be a thing where like, when you get the email, you're going to want to jump on it. So, you can go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase, and that's how you get on the email list.  

Gin Stephens: Very cool.  

Melanie Avalon: Hi friends. I'm about to tell you how you can get free electrolyte supplements, some of which are clean fast approved, all developed by none other than Robb Wolf. Have you been struggling to feel good with low carb, paleo, keto, or fasting? Have you heard of something called the keto flu? Here's the thing. The keto flu is not actually a condition. Nope. Keto flu just refers to a bundle of symptoms. Headaches, fatigue, muscle cramps, and insomnia that people experience in the early stages of keto dieting. Here's what's going on.  

When you eat a low-carb diet, your insulin levels drop. Low insulin, in turn, lowers the production of the hormone, aldosterone. Now, aldosterone is made in the kidneys and it helps you retain sodium. Low aldosterone on a keto diet makes you lose sodium at a rapid rate. Even if you are consciously consuming electrolytes, you might not be getting enough. In particular, you need electrolytes, especially sodium and potassium, in order for nerve impulses to properly fire. 

Robb Wolf, who as you guys know is my hero in the holistic health world, worked with the guys at Ketogains to get the exact formulation for electrolyte supplements to formulate LMNT Recharge so you can maintain ketosis and feel your best. LMNT Recharge has no sugar, no coloring, no artificial ingredients, no junk. They're used by three Navy SEALs teams. They are the official hydration partner to Team USA Weightlifting, they're used by multiple NFL teams, and so much more.  

Guess what? We worked out an exclusive deal for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast listeners only. Guys, this is huge. They weren't going to do a deal. I begged them, here we are. You can get a free LMNT sample pack. We're not talking discount, we're talking free. Completely free. You only pay $5 for shipping. If you don't love it, they will even refund you the $5 for shipping. I'm not kidding. The sample pack includes eight packets of LMNT, two Citrus, two Raspberry, two Orange, and two Raw Unflavored. The Raw Unflavored ones are the ones that are safe for your clean fast, and the other ones you can have in your eating window. Word on the street is the citrus flavor makes an amazing margarita by the way.  

I am loving LMNT and I think you guys will too. Again, this is completely free. You have nothing to lose. Just go to drinklmnt.com/if podcast. That's DRINKLMNT dotcom forward slash IF Podcast. And I'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show.  

Shall we jump into everything for today? 

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have some feedback from Annie. And her subject line is “The Best NSV,” which stands for Non-Scale Victory for anyone who doesn't know that. All right, she says, “Dear Gin and Melanie. About a year ago, two different gynecologists told me that I had PCOS because I had various symptoms. They gave me different pills, but I always felt that there was so little information, and I started to read a lot about it on my own. When I searched for insulin on the podcast app, I found your podcast in January of 2020. I listened to your then around 200 episodes and started to fast. Sometimes only 16 hours, sometimes 40. I always did what felt best for my body at the moment. After some months, I stopped taking the pills since it didn't make me feel good. And since then, my period has been super regular. I haven't missed a month.  

After a while, I told my best friend who is a medical student that I was fasting, and he has now become more hooked than me, and we've been doing it together ever since. I feel that I'm so incredibly in tune with my body more than I ever was before. I feel better, and I've learned so much during this journey.  

I always thought that I wanted to email you with a thank you. And today, I got the best reason because I was just told by a gynecologist that I do not have PCOS anymore. Since I started, I have not lost any weight, but I don't really need to either. But this feels like the greatest success. All in all, I just wanted to tell you that you are amazing, and that I cannot thank you enough. Lots of love to you both, from Sweden.” And lots of love to you too, Annie, and that is amazing. PCOS is related to having high levels of insulin. It sounds like fasting has lowered your insulin enough to reverse your PCOS, which is incredible. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that is so fantastic. Thank you so much, Annie, for sharing. PCOS is one of the conditions that is looked at a lot in the clinical literature with fasting. This is often found to be the case that it can be reversed. If you'd like to learn more about insulin, I did an interview with Dr. Benjamin Bikman and his book, Why We Get Sick, is so good for understanding insulin. And he talks about PCOS. He basically thinks that insulin is the cause of PCOS always. I also love that she's sharing it with her friend who's a medical student.  

Gin Stephens: I know, I love that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it’d be nice if fasting could infiltrate the conventional medical system. 

Gin Stephens: I think it's happening, really. I think that it is slowly but surely making its way. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think so too. All right. Shall we go on to our questions?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: We have a question from Laura, the subject is “Question about increasing body fat percentage.” And Laura says, “Hello. Thank you, ladies, for all that you do to promote intermittent fasting and provide us all with excellent information. You have both been a great support to me, and I appreciate your resources and continued education on IF. My question is this. I've been doing IF for about five months, not for weight loss, but it started as a structured way to fast for Lent. I liked it so much I kept going with IF. I started at 127 pounds, plus/minus 2 pounds, I had the whoosh effect and lost five pounds and a dress size after two to three weeks. I am 5’2”, and I now stay around 122 pounds plus/minus 2 pounds. I love how I look, and as a mother of four busy kids, ages 2 years to 14, I have more energy and time.  

I fast for 18:6 most days with a 20:4 once a week. However, over the past month, although my weight is staying the same, my scale which also measures body fat percentage is trending upward. Each week, the body fat percentage increases around 0.3%, and the muscle mass is trending down at the same rate. Although I don't have my waist measurements, my honesty pants fit great. My diet has not changed. I eat clean and feel best with a high fat, low carb diet. My activity and sleep have not changed significantly. Any thoughts? Should I try to open my window more and add more protein, weight training? I'm also 40. Maybe this is age related, open to suggestions and ideas. Thanks again for all your efforts, Laura.” 

Gin Stephens: Well, Laura, thank you for writing in. What I know about those scales, the home versions, is that they tend to be inaccurate, and they do a lot of measuring water, and your body is fat. So, they're not good at really measuring because the way they work with bioimpedance, they're sending an electrical signal through your body, and it really can't distinguish between fat and water. So, if your honesty pants are still fitting exactly the same, that's a great sign. I don't know that's really what's happening with your scale. Also, try changing the batteries, I had something crazy happening with my scale one time, and I changed the batteries and it fixed it. I would not say, “Oh my gosh, I'm gaining fat and losing muscle.” That could be what happening is happening. I don't know. But I would not just go by the fact that your scale is saying that just because I'm not sure that's accurate. 

But if you really do feel like you're losing muscle, then you need to do muscle building activities, so weight training would be a great thing to do. I don't know that I would have a longer window, but you could certainly increase your protein if you'd like, see about that. Really, it's just hard to know if that's what's really happening. So, it's hard to say what to do. But if it is happening, then working on building muscle would be a great thing to do. What do you think, Melanie? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, you said pretty much the entirety of my thoughts. Those scales, I really wouldn't recommend. Especially the ones that you buy and have at home, they're so influenced by water. Even things how hydrated or dehydrated you are can massively affect it. If you did want to actually measure, I would instead do more of the old school measuring. There are formulas online you can do with taking actual measurements. Or if you go to a gym, they often can help you out more with that. 

But basically, I thought Gin really nailed it in that it might not be actually happening. If it is, either way, it's not going to hurt you to focus on muscle. Age related muscle loss is a thing. We tend to lose more muscle as we age. So, focusing on maintaining or even building it is fantastic, so weight training, resistance training. I'm going to have an episode pretty soon with John Jaquish, he makes the X3 Bar system, and I'm very much a fan of that system now. That's resistant bands, and his protocol, actually, it's so short. You do it a few days a week and it's like 10 minutes. It's made to maximize all of your muscle maintenance, muscle gains with minimum stress. I should remember this after doing the interview, but it works with the range of motion to give all of your muscle the maximum muscle building stimulus without being limited by range of motion.  

When that episode comes out, I'd recommend listening to it, but it's going to be a while. But in the meantime, his system is at melanieavalon.com/x3 and the coupon code, SAVE50, will get you $50 off. It's nice, because I don't think there's anything going on with your scale. I don't know that your scale is accurate, but it's nice that it tunes you into the importance of your muscle because it really can't hurt to focus on muscle. Adding in activities and also adding protein, definitely, I agree with Gin, I wouldn't lengthen the window necessarily, but adding more protein could be a nice thing.  

Gin Stephens: Awesome.  

Melanie Avalon: We are on the same page there.  

Gin Stephens: Very nice.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have a question from Becky and the subject is “Question about blood glucose.” She says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. I have a question about blood glucose.” [laughs] Maybe I shouldn't have read that part, because I just said that, all right. She says, “I started wearing a CGM two weeks ago, just out of interest. I'm not diabetic or prediabetic. And my A1c and glucose levels are normal. However, occasionally throughout the couple of weeks, my blood glucose has dropped into the very low range. This is not during fasting, which I tend to do for 16 to 18 hours per day, but it's usually during my eating window. And I've been trying to pay attention to things and it doesn't necessarily happen after I eat sugary foods, but more often seems to be after I have carbs. Usually during fasting, my glucose levels are 4.8 to 5.3.” Now, is that Australian or European? I’ve no idea what 4.8 to 5.3 is. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, 3.3, for example is 60. 4.7 is 85. 5.5 is 100. Normally, her fasting glucose is between around 86-ish to upper 90s. Normally, it's hers in the 90s, and it's dropping to the 50s. 

Gin Stephens: To the 50s after she eats? 

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. She says, “Do you know why this big drop happens and/or, if this is a problem? My thought is that my insulin response is too great and drops my blood sugar too low, and then it takes a bit of time for my glucagon to kick in and bring my sugars up again. What are your thoughts? Thank you, Becky.”  

Melanie Avalon: All right. This is a great question from Becky. The first thing I would suggest, Becky, is if you have access to it, I would get a glucometer. Something where you can check your blood sugar with on your finger, and I would check the meter to see if the baseline correlates because occasionally the CGM can be off by 10 points, maybe even more. I would just do that to check. If the baseline is off, it doesn't mean, and we talked about this before, but if the baseline is off, the precision will be correct. So basically, even if it's off by 10, it'll always be off by the same 10. Check that just so you can figure out because it's possible, I could see how it would be off, and maybe that drop isn't quite as low as you're thinking it is. In any case, regardless, the job is happening. The precision is accurate. And, yes, this actually is pretty common. I experienced this.  

I was wearing a CGM for months, then I took some months off. Now I'm wearing one again. I've been wearing one for about three weeks now. Right now, my blood sugar is 90. The pattern I've noticed in me is actually very similar to you, Becky. I have fasted blood sugar that's good throughout the day. Actually, when I do cryotherapy, it shoots way high up and then it goes down. After I eat, I get the same drop like you do. It doesn't go down to the 50s, but it does drop a lot and then it goes back up again. And I do think it is a basically a hypoglycemic response from over, I don't know, if I'm over producing insulin, but I mean, I guess so. And then finally, it raises again when your body makes the-- Is she doing a low carb diet? 

Gin Stephens: She didn't say. 

Melanie Avalon: She didn't say. If she was doing a low carb diet, then it would be probably things like glucagon or the liver producing cortisol to bring back up the blood. If you're eating a high carb diet, it could just be a matter of the carbs getting shuttled into the cells and then released back and then levels become stable again. So, is it a problem? Well, I'm not a doctor. I don't know how much of a problem it is. My question to you is, when this happens, do you feel starving and ravenous? Or would you not have had any idea this was happening if you hadn't worn a CGM? 

Gin Stephens: I wonder if she's shaky, because I feel if your blood glucose is dropping down and you feel shaky and unwell, that's a problem.  

Melanie Avalon: She says it doesn't necessarily happen after I eat sugary foods, but more often seems to be after I have carbs. Okay. 

Gin Stephens: If she's not feeling shaky, what's so interesting is the fact that we're wearing these CGMs now, people who had no idea what their blood glucose is doing are like, “Hey, this is what my blood glucose is doing. Is it normal?” When really, we wouldn't even have had any idea. So, maybe that is totally what Becky's has always done, and it's normal. 

Melanie Avalon: The thing, I think, is something to be more worried about, because if you're having these drops, but you're not experiencing them as a negative feeling in your body, I personally wouldn't be too concerned. I wouldn't be as concerned about the lows. It's more the super highs that people don't realize are happening. Those are what I think are pretty concerning. Either huge, massive spikes, so they don't realize are happening or baseline high resting blood sugar levels that they don't realize is happening. I wouldn't stress out too much about it. 

I would check the CGM. What you could do is you could play around though and this is one of the great benefits of having a CGM is you can figure out what really works for you. So, there's no harm in playing around with your food choices and your macros, and seeing if you can find a type of diet or meal or combination where you don't experience that crazy low. Thoughts, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: That was it. Also, if you're really concerned, you really do need to check with your doctor just to make sure. We don't know what's really normal for you or what's happening. Feeling good is always a good sign. And it's just interesting that we wouldn't even know what was happening if we didn't have these devices now.  

Melanie Avalon: They're fascinating. I'll put a link in the show notes to the two episodes that I've done on CGMs. One is with Levels and one is with NutriSense. Then, if you'd like your own, the links for those are melanieavalon.com/levels, lets you skip their waitlist. They say their waitlist is 115,000. And then, melanieavalon.com/nutrisensecgm gets you $40 off with the coupon code, MELANIEAVALON, so you can jump on the CGM train for anybody interested. I heard back from ZOE, and I think I am going to do the muffins. They send a CGM, right?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, does it link to their practice, the app? 

Gin Stephens: Yes. You don't see what your numbers are doing. It's the old school. It's not like Levels. It automatically sends it. Unless it's a new one.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, you don't scan anything?  

Gin Stephens: No.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, so you don't even see the numbers. That's interesting.  

Gin Stephens: You don't see the numbers, you just see your wave. Now I was able to see my numbers because I synced it. Maybe it's different now, but it was the old-style FreeStyle Libre, where you actually have a readout. It's like a little device.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, not on your phone, not on your app. Oh, interesting. 

Gin Stephens: It might be different now, because technology changes. I have the Levels at my house to do, I'm going to wait till I get home from the beach, do it in September. They sent it to me to try. Thank you for having them do that. I'm really excited to try it, but it's really different. Since I'd done the ZOE, I feel like I'm missing, what is this? But you just attach it to yourself, but that's it, and then you scan that. So, it's different than that. 

Melanie Avalon: I'll let you know if it changed. 

Gin Stephens: It might have changed, but I was able to sync, you had to then get your little sensor reader and it would sync with the sensor reader. And then I was able to take the sensor reader and connect it to my computer, and then upload it through this third-party system and see what my numbers actually were. 

Melanie Avalon: You know what made me so excited recently in this whole sphere?  

Gin Stephens: What? 

Melanie Avalon: Did you know they make HbA1c meters?  

Gin Stephens: Nope.  

Melanie Avalon: I was concerned because I got back my HbA1c and it was two points higher than it's been, and that did not make sense to me. And I was lamenting to my friend, James Clement, who I've had on my show. He wrote a book called The Switch. And he was like, “I'll send you a meter.” It was like a glucometer, but it tests your HbA1c. It was so exciting. Except the lancet to get the blood for it was very intense. It requires more blood and I was not anticipating the lancet being so effective.  

Gin Stephens: Good luck with the ZOE test because you do have to squeeze out a lot of blood for that one. You have to drip it on this card, lots of it. That was the worst part. I did not like dripping my blood and squeezing, squeezing, squeezing to get all the blood out because it has to go up. Like on a pregnancy test, it has to go up, the liquid, you have to get enough blood that it goes up this little like-- 

Melanie Avalon: They send the lancet, right?  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, they send you all that.  

Melanie Avalon: If it's like the lancet that came with HbA1c meter, I was fine, because it was very effective.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I didn't like it. I didn't like doing that part, but I did it. It was worth it for the data.  

Melanie Avalon: Worst-case scenario, I guess I could go in any lab test now, do a blood draw. Yep.  

Gin Stephens: Awesome.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. Okay, so our next question.  

Gin Stephens: All right, we have a question from Rebecca, and the subject is “Fasting Insulin Number,” which should fit in very nicely, because it talks about some things we just said. “Gin and Melanie, before I jump into my long email, sorry, thank you for making a difference in my life and countless others. I wrote a question last year and you read it in Episode 194. Thank you. It was in regards to my HbA1c.” 

Melanie Avalon: Oh. Look here. Oh, wait, I just realized we didn't even say what HbA1c is. I'll say what it is after. 

Gin Stephens: Okay. She goes on to say, “You mentioned about getting a fasting insulin test done, which I did via a walk-in lab this past May. Here's an observation and a question since in Episode 221, you both talked about glucose and fasting insulin possibly going hand in hand. Well, after fasting 12 hours, my glucose was 116, but my fasted insulin was 2.5. I can't swing a CGM, so I just have to rely on periodic blood work. Any thoughts on these very far apart numbers? I am 60 years old, 5’10” and 149.03, and an athletic build. My CRP, which indicates inflammation, a diabetes indicator as well, is 0.50, which is great. You two have become best friends in my head, and thank you and so sorry for this very long email. Obviously, I am not good at condensing.”  

Melanie Avalon: All right, Rebecca. Well, thank you so much for your question. Well, first of all, bravo for being interested in all of this, and testing your fasting insulin on your own. That's so cool that she decided to do this. Both blood sugar and insulin, the tests can fluctuate a lot. I think that's one of the things with a CGM that people really realize is just how much blood sugar can fluctuate throughout the day, which can be pretty misleading for people getting blood tests, because there are so many factors that could affect your blood test. When you go into the doctor, you could get a blood sugar spike for something unrelated to your overall blood sugar levels, and it can make it seem like your blood sugar is either lower or higher than it normally would be. Insulin as well, we don't know quite as much about the stats on insulin but I did ask Dr. Bikman this, personally, not from this question, but from another question, wanting to know about fluctuations in insulin. He was saying that, yes, the tests could fluctuate, and they could also be off the same way that blood sugar can be. 

I say all that to say it could have been misleading information. It would be nice-- I know, she said that she can't swing doing it a lot. It would be nice if you could do it again and see if you have that same pattern, because if you continue to have that pattern, that would be a little bit strange, but this is just my thoughts, I'm not a doctor. This was a fasted test, so 12 hours. The fact that the insulin was so low, I feel like that's a more stable reflection of how the insulin is while you're fasting, because it's unlikely that if you were that fasted, that you're fasting insulin would just spike up, compared to blood sugar, which you could have gotten nervous or had some coffee or exercise, or the liver just decided to pump out some more glucose, that can easily spike up. It's really nice that you had that low insulin number. What I'm saying is, it's very possible that you have low insulin and that you also normally have lower blood sugar, but it just spiked, but again, it's hard to know. 

What I would do, is I know you aren't able to get a CGM right now, you could get, we mentioned earlier, a glucometer. Those are pretty affordable. And the great thing is they let you check your blood sugar all the time. It's like unlimited blood sugar tests, you just have to buy the test strip refills. Compared to the earlier things we were talking about large amounts of blood needed, tghere are tiny, tiny pricks that are required. I have a Keto-Mojo and it actually measures both ketones and blood sugar. I also have a Bayer blood sugar. I'll put links in the show notes to both of those. What I would recommend is if you really want to figure out what was going on, since you can't get the CGM right now, get a glucometer if you're open to it and start testing your blood sugar throughout the day just to get a sense, and then next time you check your insulin, see if it is again low.  

What's really interesting is, I was just learning about the HOMA score. There's actually a calculation that you can do, and I want to go back and look at my lab test and do and you could do it for this. But it's a mathematical equation to determine insulin resistance based on your glucose and insulin. Although now having said all that context about how the numbers can be off, I do wonder about the implications of it if the numbers are off a little bit. It's the HOMA-IR formula. And it's actually fasting glucose times fasting insulin divided by 405, and you want that to be less than 2 for insulin resistance, ideally, like the lower the better. Rebecca, your HOMA-IR score is actually 0.71, which is really great. I don't know, I would not be too concerned, if you like I would do any of the things I said about continuing to monitor, but those are my thoughts.  

And then, the HbA1c, because we didn't define it. It is a marker of blood sugar levels over three or four months, and that's because the turnover of the red blood cells is about that length. So, it shows overall level of glycation of your blood cells from blood sugar in your bloodstream. I always forget the numbers. You know what’s really interesting, Gin, I find this fascinating, and it I find it concerning. Did you know that-- I don't know when it was, I was just reading a book, they raised the level of HbA1c for diabetes, like an entire point? 

Gin Stephens: No, I didn't know that. 

Melanie Avalon: I just find it concerning that, we adjust our standards to a disease population, why? We have the standard population, but because of the rise of diabetes and metabolic issues, I just don't know that it's helpful to raise the standard. 

Gin Stephens: Well, it's like I was talking to somebody yesterday recording the podcast, Intermittent Fasting Stories, and she was talking about her fasted insulin levels. She just got her number, and she said that she was told by her doctor that the range from, I can't remember something under 5, I can't remember the number that he said to 20 was normal. I'm like, “Well, 20 might be normal, but it's not healthy.”  

Melanie Avalon: For insulin?  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. But that's what I'm saying is-- and the same with the A1c, like you were just talking about, they've raised it to be normal, and that's not normal.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's very concerning. That's why we love-- on here, we've worked with InsideTracker before, and what they do is they do blood tests, but they look at it by their ideal ranges, rather than the conventional ranges, which I think is so, so important. 

Gin Stephens: There's so much difference between 20 and 5, for example, with insulin. If you got an insulin of 19, that ain't good. it might be normal, but certainly not optimal. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't have it right now but I think the A1c had an increase from like 5.5 to 6.5 for diabetes. 

Gin Stephens: I wonder what the reasoning is, is that they want to diagnose fewer people officially? What would be the motivation for doing that? Insurance companies doing it for some reason? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Because the reason you could say is, “Oh, well, more people have higher levels, so that's what's normal, so that's the standard.” But to change the definition of diabetes, I don't know. It's a good question. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I would like to know why.  

Melanie Avalon: That would be interesting.  

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Melanie Avalon: We have a question from Dana. The subject is “Meal timing during eating window.” And Dana says, “I currently do a 17:7 daily fasting.” Whenever people say that one, I always pause because I feel like it's -- like most people don't say 17:7. 

Gin Stephens: [laughs] I don't know why, people just like even numbers? Well, what's funny is people do 19:5. People do 19:5 or all the other. So, I don't know why 17:7 wouldn't be a thing. If you could do 18:6 or 16:8, you could certainly do 17:7, or you could even do like 16.5:7.5. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, goodness. Well, Dana is doing 17:7. She says, “I could easily do with just lunch, 12 to 1 PM, and dinner at 6 PM. But I am worried about getting enough protein and fiber and just two meals, so I have a chia seed fiber/protein shake that I tried to get in, in addition to lunch and dinner. What is the best timing to have that snack? Midpoint between lunch and dinner, or is it better to cluster it with either lunch or dinner to maximize the number of hours between meals and the eating window?”  

Gin Stephens: Now, Dana, I would like to have you define the word 'better' for yourself. There's so many things, like which is better for convenience. What happens in the middle of the afternoon if you have it then? Does it make you hungry after you eat it because I know that if I have just something small random, in the middle of-- let's say I was going to eat two meals one day, and then lunch, and then dinner, and then I had something small in the middle, it would make me hungry or sooner. You just have to fit that in where it feels right to you. I'm not going to claim any of them is better. So, if it works better to have it with your lunch or with your dinner, do that. If you like having it in the middle of the afternoon, have it then. If it makes you feel weird after you have it, then don't have it then. But if you have it in the middle of the afternoon, and you look forward to it, and you love it and you feel great after you have it, have it at that time.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I agree. With me and my digestive issues, I would do for me, for example, what would feel the best digestively. I know she's asking about maximizing the hours between meals. 

Gin Stephens: I try not to worry about all that, because once your window's open, your window is open, your body's digesting food, there's stuff going on. I just figure window's open, window's closed. I don't want you to really micromanage the window so much and worried about what's the best thing. I don't know, that's just my brain thinking. I know some people think differently than me and that's all right, too. 

Melanie Avalon: To that point, exactly, depending on what you're eating, but it's highly unlikely in my opinion that you'd be able to eat at 12, and again at 6 and enter the fasted state in between. So, you're not going to be entering the state of turning on the epigenetic changes and the signaling pathways for the fasted benefits. So, there's really no point in trying to achieve that goal. You can just keep eating in between, but the thing is, that doesn't mean that, “Oh, I'm in the eating window, so it doesn't even matter if I just keep eating.” What I mean by that to clarify is just because you're not going to hit the fasted state, doesn't mean that eating more isn't eating more. 

Gin Stephens: That's meaning we're not recommending overeating. I could make a case for that it's “better" to have it in the middle, just after going through ZOE, and realizing it takes your body a while to clear out, the excess glucose, the excess fat and then having too much in your body at one time. Marty Kendall even talks about this. Too much energy in your body at one time, so you want to spread it out a little bit. Having in the middle of the afternoon, I don't think is a bad thing.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I like your answer. Definitely a question where just do what feels right. I think people really-- [sighs] so much of this is self-experimentation and just finding a window that works for you. And that sounds like a cop-out answer, but there's not some perfect solution and some perfect answer that you're magically going to find. I think we will stress a lot about doing everything right, if that makes sense. 

Gin Stephens: Yes. Well, there's got to be the best time to have this. There's so many things going on in your body. Like I said, when I went through the ZOE testing and understood, when I spaced my food, too close together, I got a lower score, because my body hadn't had time to clear out the last one. Also, the volume makes a difference. I've had a little bit and then later I had a little bit, that's different than having a whole lot, then having more. The way that you crowded them together can be a problem if you're having too much.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think it's so freeing with fasting and diet as well. I think it's really freeing to-- okay, this is my analogy. I have an analogy, Gin. I feel it's like a coloring book with the outlines. When you're a kid, and you pick up a coloring book, and you're trying to decide which one to color, you find the picture with the outline that you like, and then you just really stick to that outline, and then you color it in however way that you want. With the fasting, you can pick a window that you're sticking to, and then just trust the process, trust the outlines, and color within that.  

Gin Stephens: And you can color it however you want. Yes, that makes me think of when I was five, I entered--- I don’t know I guess my parents entered it for me, I don't know, but I won this coloring contest. And I looked back-- and my mother kept this, this picture of a Christmas coloring contest. I looked back at it years later, and I had colored Santa crazy. It was like the Santa, he didn't have on a red suit when I was done. It was crazy. Of course, this was like, what 1974? So, maybe they really appreciate it. Maybe I was the only five-year-old who entered, I don't really know. But I certainly did not color it in the standard way. 

Melanie Avalon: You know what so funny? Did we talk about this? We're the same person. It's just funny how we have the same stories about-- When I was also around five, I did a coloring contest, but I had just learned-- what was that TV show with a guy and he teaches you how to color that Bob or something.  

Gin Stephens: You mean the painting guy? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: On PBS? 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I don't know. I forgot the name of it, but yeah. 

Melanie Avalon: I learned the technique of how to do progressive shading. It was like this gymnastic coloring piece and I worked so hard to perfectly shade it so that it gave the depth to the-- what is it called? What do you--  

Gin Stephens: Did you say you were about five?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: See, I didn't do it like that. I just went crazy and colored it all crazy.  

Melanie Avalon: We did the same thing, but we're opposites.  

Gin Stephens: The opposite of it. Yeah. My picture was crazy. But it was like, “Color, color.” I mean, Santa had green, it was just-- yeah. [laughs] I was not following the rules.  

Melanie Avalon: I was implementing the technique. Oh, my goodness. That's so funny. I won so much stuff, I got to go see like gymnast, like the collegiate gymnast, and they gave me all this swag.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I won a tricycle and I was already too old for a tricycle, so I remember being mad. I was like, “I am not a baby. I do not need a tricycle. Thank you.” [laughs] Anyway. 

Melanie Avalon: Back to the analogy though, the point I'm trying to make was that, once you pick that outline, the outline is the fasting window in my analogy. 

Gin Stephens: You can color Santa green, or you can do a technique. It's okay. 

Melanie Avalon: But then on top of that, you might not like how you colored it. Just because there's a boundary doesn't mean that it's going to work for you. You can still color it however you want, and you can color it a way that you like or you can color it away that you don't like, but I think there's a freedom in having that boundary of the fasting window and just trusting that process.  

Gin Stephens: Exactly.  

Melanie Avalon: Alrighty, in any case, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you'd like to submit your own questions for this show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. There is all of the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike. The show notes for today's episode will have a complete transcript and they will have links to everything that we talked about. That will be ifpodcast.com/episode230 and then you can follow us on Instagram. I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens, and we are @ifpodcast 

Gin Stephens: Awesome.  

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

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.  

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

Gin Stephens: All right, talk to you then. Bye.  

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

 

 

Sep 05

Episode 229: Serrapeptase, Burning Alcohol As Energy, Poor Fasted Sleep, Too Much Fasting, Over-Restriction, Donating Blood, Properly Fueled ADF, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 229 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 masszymes.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order! AND For a limited time you can get a FREE bottle of P3-OM and HCL with select purchases!

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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 masszymes.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order! plus the chance to get more than $50 worth of supplements for free!

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! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Spoon-Fed: Why Almost Everything We’ve Been Told About Food Is Wrong (Tim Spector)

The Diet Myth: Why the Secret to Health and Weight Loss Is Already in Your Gut (tim Spector)

Stay Up To Date With All The News And Pre-Order Info About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase!

18:45 - Listener Q&A: Anonymous - Body Burning Alcohol for energy

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!

26:20 - JOOVV: For A Limited Time Go To joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

29:20 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - Waking up feeling exhausted during ADF

Natural Force Organic Pure C8 MCT Oil

Adrenaline Dominance: A Revolutionary Approach to Wellness (Michael Platt, MD)

46:15 - PREP DISH: Get A Free 2 Week Trial With The Paleo, Keto, And The September Freezer Meal Challenge At prepdish.com/ifpodcast!

48:05 - Listener Q&A: Evelyn - NSV and donating blood Question 

56:35 - Listener Q&A: Stephanie - 4:3 Window

#171 – Steve Austad, Ph.D.: The landscape of longevity science: making sense of caloric restriction, biomarkers of aging, and possible geroprotective molecules

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 229 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.  

Hi friends, I'm about to tell you how you can get $50 worth of some of our favorite supplements all for free. Yes, for free. A really good question to ponder is, can you avoid all digestive issues by only eating organic whole foods? Don't I know that this would be absolutely amazing? But sometimes, it's not exactly possible. Our natural ability to digest food actually declines as we age. This is because our body produces fewer enzymes, which are the proteins responsible for digesting food. Fewer enzymes means more difficulty digesting food, and even organic whole foods don't necessarily provide enough enzymes to properly digest them. This is especially true if you cook your food because cooking kills enzymes. This is why you may have digestive problems even after a healthy meal. Your body just can't produce enough enzymes to get the job done. 

This is where supplementing with a high-quality enzyme supplement can be a huge help. I personally adore MassZymes by BiOptimizers. Trust me, our audience tells us all the time how much MassZymes is a game changer for them. It’s a best-in-class supplement that is loaded with full-spectrum enzymes for digesting proteins, starches, sugars, fibers, and fats. Taking MassZymes daily helps top off your enzyme levels and replace the enzymes your body may be no longer producing. This means you'll be able to eat all sorts of delicious food, and digest them quickly and effortlessly. After you start taking MassZymes, you may notice that you no longer feel bloated after meals and that your belly feels flatter. I 100% experienced this. If you have leaky gut, MassZymes could reduce gut irritation and help you absorb more nutrients. 

Friends, life is too short to suffer from digestive issues. Don't I know it? You can try MassZymes risk free and see what improvements you notice. We have an incredible, exclusive offer just for our listeners. You can go to masszymes.com/ifpodcast and use the coupon code, IFPODCAST10, for 10% discount. Oh, and one more thing. For a limited time, BiOptimizers is also giving away free bottles of their best-selling products, P30M and HCL, with select purchases. Just go to masszymes.com/ifpodcast to get your exclusive 10% discount with the coupon code, IFPODCAST10, plus the chance to get more than $50 worth of supplements all for free. We'll put all this information in the show notes. 

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years and your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body. 

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

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

Hi, everybody and welcome. This is episode number 229 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 am packing up to go spend three weeks at the beach. 

Melanie Avalon: It's exciting. 

Gin Stephens: It’s the longest I've ever been away from home. Chad just realized that I'm leaving tomorrow, he's known that I was going but he's like, “Wait a minute. Three weeks is a really long time.” I'm like, “Sorry.”  

Melanie Avalon: Is it the longest, really?  

Gin Stephens: It's the longest I've ever been away from him, yeah. Our whole married life. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.  

Gin Stephens: It just worked out. We got to have a lot to do with the house and in between rentals and lots going on, and also got friends coming. I didn't go for the entire month of July, because the house was rented. I only spent one week there in June. So, I grabbed these three weeks in August for myself, and I have a lot to do, like I said. So, I'll be very, very busy, but I've got a couple of friends coming down, one, then she's leaving, then and others coming, then she's leaving, then Will's going to come and spend some time with me. I'll be doing a lot of recording while I'm there too. My regular podcast recording schedule is still happening.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm sure it will be super fun and productive.  

Gin Stephens: It will but Chad is going to miss me. So, he's already let me know. Yeah, I think it's going to be awesome. I'm very excited. The ocean is very warm in August. So, that's nice.  

Melanie Avalon: I love the Atlantic, the warm Atlantic.  

Gin Stephens: I'm going to get in the ocean every day. I like to get in the ocean and jump around with the waves. It's like a really great workout. Like really.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I agree. I'm an Atlantic Ocean person. I feel that people are either Atlantic or Pacific.  

Gin Stephens: Or, you might be Gulf of Mexico. Some people are Gulf of Mexico. I am not.  

Melanie Avalon: That's what I am.  

Gin Stephens: You’re Gulf of Mexico? You'd like the calm?  

Melanie Avalon: It is just what I-- growing up, that's where we went.  

Gin Stephens: That's what it all boils down to.  

Melanie Avalon: At whatever beach you went to growing up. 

Gin Stephens: Guess where I went, Myrtle Beach. That's where my grandmother took me. [laughs] So, that's where I go. We found a picture that-- my mother came to visit us, a couple weeks ago, and she brought some old photos that actually a cousin on my granddaddy's side gave us pictures we'd never seen before. Because they were like my aunt, my old, old aunt and my granddaddy's side had them. So, we'd never seen them. It was some pictures from my mother was little, and right down there where we bought our house, like 10 minutes away from where we bought our house, my mother, and my uncle, and my grandparents were there in the 50s. Actually, I guess it was the early 50s. Maybe, right even before my house was built that I'm in, that was built in 1956, 10 miles away, it's really fun. We have vacation routes in this area. So, no wonder I love it. 

Melanie Avalon: [giggles] I love that. 

Gin Stephens: So, what's new with you?  

Gin Stephens: I have two exciting announcements. I was just looking at the calendar, though. One of them will have already happened. But all the more reason friends to be on my email list, because if you missed this, you would have known about it. You can get on my email list at melanieavalon.com/email list, although, I might also send an email through our email list because it's relevant. I'm doing a Q&A with the people at Zoey.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, I love that.  

Melanie Avalon: Not like an interview for my show. We're going to do a live Zoom, because I've been getting a lot of questions about Zoey--  

Gin Stephens: In the Facebook group?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm, yeah, and people. Well, people loving it, but then also people a little bit confused about the recommendations, and just wanting some clarity. I sent those questions all over to them, and they were super great. A, they got me very detailed answers, but then they said they would prefer just doing a live thing and talking to people. So, that should be super fun. One of the main things that people were, I guess, curious about was it seemed like a lot of the food recommendations were very similar. I mean they are. They say they are, but it's evolving and that they're working on making it more personalized. 

Gin Stephens: Even though the foods might be similar as far as recommendations go, the scores are different. That's what I noticed working with the moderators of my Facebook groups and the social network, the friends of mine who went through it that are moderators, comparing our scores, like we would put in the same meal just out of curiosity and see what our individual scores were, and the scores were very varied. Even though the same foods are scoring typically higher, the combination would get a different result. That was what was fascinating, we didn't get the same exact number.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, yeah.  

Gin Stephens: Even though we were both putting in the same-- we would even check brand names and things. Somebody's like, “Oh, look, this scores 99 for me on Zoey," and someone else would put it in and it would not be a 99.” 

Melanie Avalon: I haven't done Zoey. I wonder if it'd be more appropriate if I do it first before. 

Gin Stephens: Well, that's a thought. Remember, you got to eat those muffins. You've got to do it for science.  

Melanie Avalon: But it's just one day, right?  

Gin Stephens: I can't remember and it's always changing. It might have been two days of muffins, but then what they're doing right now is even different from when I did it because, just like you said before, it's always evolving. This is really research in action. They're not just like a program you buy, and here's the program. They are actually doing scientific research. They published something in the journal, Nature, which is a very well-renowned scientific journal recently. So, they're evolving their recommendations and everything about it based on as they learn, as the science evolves. 

Melanie Avalon: I might email them. I might see if they would prefer me to do it first. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's a great idea. Also, I have a friend, they actually asked her to do it again, like they're comparing data. As part of the study, they said, “We would like for you to go through it again with your-- just to see.”  

Melanie Avalon: I also finished Tim Spector’s book because I'm interviewing him in less than a month as well.  

Gin Stephens: Isn't he wonderful?  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I guess, just from what I'd seen from the feedback about Zoey from my audience, I was anticipating it to be much more not open to something-- His section on meat, for example, he was very much clear that most long-lived populations eat meat and very clear on what might actually be going on with that, and he was also-- I loved his perspective on salt. I loved his perspective on wine and alcohol.  

Gin Stephens: Can I pop in something real quick that confuses a lot of people about Zoey?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. 

Gin Stephens: Just because something doesn't score 100, doesn't mean you're not supposed to eat it. That was just an example. We tend to want to gamify and beat our scores, and if this scores a 90, then I should try to get a 95. People can mistakenly think that a meal that includes meat the Zoey scores 75 and that means you shouldn't eat meat, but that's not what it's saying. We follow their recommendations and follow their program. They don't tell you that all your meals should score above a 90. So, people mistakenly think that they're being guided to not eat meat at all, when really that is them looking at numbers and thinking I want to get 100. We were trained to get 100 in school. Getting 100 is what you want. Always a 100. That might be something Zoey could keep in mind maybe for feedback, because we're so trained, it's ingrained in our psyche, the goal should be 100. That's not how they want you to live your life and I'm glad that you got that sense from reading Spoon-Fed. 

Melanie Avalon: I thought it was going to be not as nuanced in his perspective on the things I just mentioned, meat, salt, alcohol. The things I learned in the alcohol chapter, I've learned so much. Just things I didn't realize, like the recommendations for alcohol intake between different countries, I knew it was different but it's shockingly different. Then, the correlations to health just don't line up. He said in Chile, the recommendation-- which I tried to verify this and I couldn't find this number this high, so, I'm not sure where this was coming from. But he said in Chile the maximum recommended intake is the equivalent of six glasses per day. Then in the UK, I think now it's like zero or something, but they have the worst health-- It's just really, really interesting. Not saying that alcohol equals health automatically, but he definitely creates a really nuanced picture. 

Gin Stephens: But also, you can't go by recommendations as equating for health. Just because they recommend, they have zero in the UK, I don't think the UK is following that recommendation. Just because they recommend zero and have terrible health doesn't-- you know.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's a very valid point. He even said some pretty what I thought were very controversial things about the role of alcohol in pregnancy. I was like, “Oh, did not anticipate this.” I'm really excited to interview him. 

Gin Stephens: He's a scientist. He's looking at that info, and he's not always telling you what is politically correct to say.  

Melanie Avalon: It was something to the effect of drinking during pregnancy-- I'm sure there was more context about the amounts and everything. But basically, it very rarely actually creates issues in the child. But again, don't quote me on that. Read the chapter.  

Gin Stephens: It's been a long time since I read it. I read it when it first came out, and I haven't read it since. Maybe, I should go back and read it. I think it's on my Kindle. I think that's how I bought it. If not, I'll get it on my Kindle, and I'll read it on the beach.  

Melanie Avalon: It's Spoon-Fed. I haven't mentioned the title yet. So, for listeners, I'll put a link to it in the show notes. 

Gin Stephens: And his other book, The Diet Myth, is really good too.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to try to read it if I have time before interviewing him.  

Gin Stephens: But just keep in mind. It was several years older. He evolves his thinking. But I learned a lot. It was way early in my-- we're all different. Opening up of my mind, it was really early. I read it in maybe--0 it was either 2015 or 2016. So, it was well before I wrote Feast Without Fear. It really is what got me thinking and it was like a foundational-- just like The Obesity Code was foundational for me, so was The Diet Myth by Tim Spector. 

Melanie Avalon: We might start production this week on the serrapeptase supplement. So, listeners get on my email list for that. I have an email list just for that supplement. It's at melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase, and we're going to do a preorder special and the prices will probably not be that low ever again. I say this every time but basically serrapeptase is an enzyme created by the Japanese silkworm. You take it in the fasted state. It breaks down residual proteins in your body. So, it really addresses anything that-- or it can address anything that is from a protein buildup or your immune system reacting to proteins. So, arthritis, inflammation, brain fog, fibroids. An article just came out in June, and I haven't read all of it yet, it actually talks about the role of serrapeptase to treat COVID. 

Gin Stephens: I saw that somewhere. Eating up the proteins, I actually saw something related to COVID and serrapeptase. I wondered if that's where you were going with that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, probably.  

Gin Stephens: It wasn't that article I sent you, was it?  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I just saw this yesterday.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, then it wasn't. 

Melanie Avalon: I'll put a link to it in the show notes, but I haven't sat down and read every serrapeptase study that I can find. So, I need to actually do that. I'm really excited too.  

Gin Stephens: You'll be like the world's premier expert on serrapeptase.  

Melanie Avalon: The few studies I've read, it's just so overwhelmingly clear that it has so many health benefits, and it's really appreciated in countries like Japan and here, it's just not even-- People are just not aware about it. One of the studies I was reading, it was saying that it rivals NSAIDs for its effectiveness without any of the side effects of NSAIDs. 

Gin Stephens: Just to be clear, we're not hinting that it's going to prevent or reverse or COVID or anything like that. But what it does is, it breaks down proteins, and so that's an interesting thought. 

Melanie Avalon: Maybe, I'll report back next week after I've read the whole study about what it actually says. Because I think it talks about a few different mechanisms of action. In any case, I'm creating my own brand. I've been taking it for years, different brands, but I'm just going to create my own. So, the two emails to get on are melanieavalon.com/emaillist and melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. The show notes by the way will be at ifpodcast.com/episode229, and I'll put links. We've already talked about so much to everything there. Shall we jump into everything for today? 

Gin Stephens: Yes, let's get started, and we have a question from Anonymous. Bum, bum, bum  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, for some feedback.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. It's feedback. Yes, and the subject is "Body burning alcohol for energy." Anonymous says, “Hello, and thank you for your podcasts. On Episode 225, you answered a burning question I've had for years about the body using alcohol as a fuel source. I know someone who fasts daily and eats only dinner. He's very lean and well defined, although, he does not lift weights or exercise. In fact, he's disabled. However, he drinks beer all day long.” Now, this is just me interrupting. I would not consider that fasting all day. Beer has plenty of fuel in it.  

Melanie Avalon: Beer actually has carbs as well. It's not just pure alcohol.  

Gin Stephens: He's definitely not fasting. I just wanted to get that out there just in case. Let's say someone was listening and they-- 

Melanie Avalon: And stopped listening?  

Gin Stephens: Right. If he's drinking beer all day long, he is not fasting, not even close to fasting. She continues to say, “I always wondered why he doesn't gain significant weight while adding fuel to his body. This couldn't possibly be fasting.” That's her who said that but you're correct, Anonymous. All right, let's keep going. “Then you posited that in theory, one could drink alcohol and burn more calories taking in as alcohol isn't stored as fat. So, I suppose then my friend is the realization of this theory. While I wouldn't want to replicate his pattern of eating or drinking, it makes sense to me now why he is so lean and still dirty fasting. Thank you for your thoughts. It helps bring so much into perspective.”  

Again, I really don't like the words ‘dirty fasting,’ because I really don't think it's true. We like to have the opposites. If there's something called clean fasting, there must be something called dirty fasting? I actually think the opposite of clean fasting is you're not fasting. 

Melanie Avalon: Not fasting.  

Gin Stephens: Right. The only reason I say clean fasting is because so many things have the words fasting in there. Like a juice fast, or a bone broth fast, or a fat fast, and I don't think those are actually fasting either. They're just a pattern of eating different things or drinking things that are not really fasting. Anyway, I just had to throw that in there. Sorry.  

Melanie Avalon: I guess, if you were doing a juice fast or bone broth fast, you're fasting from physical food, but you're not fasting in the sense that we think of fasting. 

Gin Stephens: Well, if you were asked to fast for a medical procedure, that would not fly. They would not want you to drink bone broth before your fasted surgery. That's a good way of thinking about it. If it's off limits [laughs] for a medical procedure, then we wouldn't want to drink a lot of beer right before medical procedure, either.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm just saying terminology wise like, you could eat food and be fasting just from apples, and you're not eating apples like you can fast from something. 

Gin Stephens: I'm fasting from apples. Yeah, well, it's like the Daniel Fast. It's a religious fast that my parents' church. They're eating, it's food. But it's just as special. They're refraining from certain things. But it's not the fasting we mean when we say fasting.  

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. It's a very interesting observation from Anonymous. So, yeah, we've talked about this before, but basically-- and again, beer is on the higher carb side of the alcoholic drinks. Well, I guess it really just depends, but alcohol itself doesn't really become body fat. I highly doubt it ever does. So, if people are just partaking in alcohol, they're actually probably not going to gain any fat from that alcohol. That said, what you eat with the alcohol can very easily be stored, and then on top of that, if you take in 2000 calories from alcohol, that's 2000 calories of energy. So, it's still adding to your total daily caloric intake and that the other food is more likely to be stored. 

Gin Stephens: Beer is technically, typically only 5% alcohol. Wine is about 12% alcohol or more. These are averages. According to average, beer would average 5%, some will be more, some will be less. Wine will average 12% and spirits, really only like spirits like vodka, usually only about 40% alcohol, unless you're drinking grain alcohol or something.  

Melanie Avalon: I wonder if that is averaging together like sweet wines and normal wines?  

Gin Stephens: I would think that's what they do for an average.  

Melanie Avalon: If you go to the store and look at the back of all the wines to see the alcohol percentage, which is something I have done trying to see if I can find any Dry Farm Wines equivalent wines in the store. It's so hard to find wines with alcohol less than 12.5% which is what Dry Farm Wines uses as they're cut off-- Usually, they're more than that.  

Gin Stephens: Well, again, that could be all data. Maybe, now, it's higher. Maybe, it used to be 12, and no one's updated, and everybody's just assuming it's still 12.  

Melanie Avalon: It’s a good question. 

Gin Stephens: That just shows that all these alcoholic drinks that we're drinking, it's not just alcohol. So, you're not just taking in alcohol calories that other 95% of your beer is not alcohol calories. 95% of it is not alcohol. So, yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: I'll give a link since we mentioned Dry Farm Wines. 

Gin Stephens: Of course, some of it's water. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, right, because it's by volume, not by calorie.  

Gin Stephens: Exactly.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Okay. Yeah, because I was thinking about in my head. I was like, “Mm.” 

Gin Stephens: I don't know the percentage of a beer that is of the calories. The percentage of the calories that would be the alcohol. That's another question. I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: I just realized this recently. The Dry Farm Wines, a lot of them a relabel with their own label. For listeners, Dry Farm Wines, they go throughout Europe. They find wineries practicing organic practices, and then the wines have to be low sugar, low alcohol, less than 12.5 or less, like you just mentioned. They test them for toxins, and pesticides, and mold. I experienced such a difference drinking them but they often now relabel the back label to give more information and it shows grams of sugar, which is so cool. Most of them are 1 gram of sugar.  

Gin Stephens: I love the label that they put on there.  

Melanie Avalon: It's so helpful. So, that would be very negligible calories from carbs and alcohol. 

Gin Stephens: Will’s coming over for dinner more lately. Last night we're all sitting around and each of us had like a tiny little glass. We opened the bottle day before yesterday of Dry Farm Wines. It's red wine. I don't drink much red wine, but I had a tiny little bit. Now, we've had four servings from it and it's still only half the bottle because we're each having tiny little bits and even Will, because he's 21 now.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, fun.  

Gin Stephens: He's going to be spoiled rotten with his Dry Farm Wines.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. No kidding. Oh, my gosh.  

Gin Stephens: Making this 21-year-old have expensive tastes but in a good way, right? 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Oh, well, she'll be editing this and she'll hear it and her birthday has already passed. But just to show how much we love it, we gave our fabulous girl on our team who helps edit the podcast and create show notes and artwork, we gave her Dry Farm Wines for her birthday. 

Gin Stephens: Happy birthday, again, even though it's passed, Brianna. 

Melanie Avalon: Happy birthday again, Brianna.  

Gin Stephens: We're like, “What should we get her?” We're going back and forth, and we're like, “Well, you just can never go wrong with Dry Farm Wines.” Can never go wrong.  

Melanie Avalon: Never. So, for listeners if you'd like to get your own, you can go to dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast and that link will also get you a bottle for a penny.  

Gin Stephens: So, that's exciting.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: This question comes from Sarah. The subject is "Waking up feeling exhausted during ADF." And Sarah says, “Hi, Mel and Gin. I wonder if you can shed some light on this. I've been IF for two years and lost 40 pounds. I have PCOS and am about 10 pounds for my goal/healthy weight. I’m currently 151 pounds and 5’4". I've been doing three 42-hour fasts most weeks since January. Never less than two a week. I tend to only lose weight if I'm low carb in my eating window which I find quite difficult and really watch what I eat. I don't eat bread, pasta, or rice usually. Otherwise, I maintain with three 42-hour fasts which sucks. I've tried shorter length fast and one meal a day, which causes me to gain weight. 

My question, on the days I do 42-hour fast, I sleep really, really well, but feel awful when I wake up, really tired and find it difficult to get out of bed. It goes once I'm up and awake, but I love to feel better. It doesn't happen on days I've eaten. I've recently had my general blood checked all fine. I take multivitamins, magnesium, fish oil, primrose oil, and electrolytes when fasting. I'm 50, and with perimenopausal symptoms such as hair falling out. Can you suggest ways to feel better? Love all your podcasts, books, and websites. Awesome. Thank you." 

Gin Stephens: I do want to say that I'm not certain that hair falling out is a perimenopausal symptom.  

Melanie Avalon: That's what I was going to say.  

Gin Stephens: I feel it's not. It actually is a symptom that what you're doing is stressing your body out. So, I wonder if you may be overfasting for your body. I don't know. Count back three months, as a rule of thumb. Three months or so before the hair started falling out. Did you go through something stressful? If the answer is, “Oh, yeah, that was when my son was in the hospital or that was when I started a new stressful job.” Stress can make our hair start the hair fall process, and it's whatever your body perceives to be as a stress. You even could have had an illness that your body perceived as a stress. We try to make a lot of connections with what it is, and sometimes, we're not right. It might not be menopause. So, just keep that in mind. 

Melanie Avalon: It can be a sign but I think everything you just said is probably more likely the case and given the context of her question, it might not be menopause. 

Gin Stephens: Yep. If you have PCOS, then, that lets us know that your body likely has an issue with insulin because generally PCOS is related to higher levels of insulin. So, you're going to need to do things to get your insulin down, and that is why the longer fasts tend to be good for your body, and also, that probably why your body responds better to lower carb. So, you said it sucks, that's a bummer, and I know that it's frustrating. I get it. Because I would not be happy either, if my body needed me to do something that didn't feel like the thing I wanted to do. However, that being said, we have to work with the bodies we have, not our idea of what we want.  

For example, I wish I had a body that was doing great with allowing me to have a glass of wine, a big glass of wine every night, maybe two, but I don't. So, I've had to say, “Well, you know what? That isn't what my body does well with." If I eat too much sugar, I get restless legs. So, I have to adjust what I do to match what I want to have happen. I want you to reframe the three 42 inch-- 42 inch, I don't know where that came from. [laughs] The three 42-hour fasts. Instead of doing three 42-hour fasts, what if you did three 36-hour fasts? That might make a big difference. 36 to 42 is a lot of difference. Six hours. So, three 42-hour fasts might be more than your body wants to do. Try three 36-hour fasts instead. That would mean you're eating earlier in the day. Maybe model after the carbohydrate addicts' diet, which is an oldie but a goodie. But that was really early days of realizing how insulin affects us and she talked about it in there. Maybe do a low carb on the days that are your up days and you're going to have a 12-hour eating window instead of six because I really do think that three 42-hour fasts might be ever restriction, because the research on ADF, they weren't restricting at all on the updates. They weren't having a six-hour eating window. So, if you're having a six-hour eating window every single time that just might be over restriction.  

So. back to the carbohydrate addicts' diet, what I was talking about is, she had the plan. It was low carb breakfast, low carb lunch, regular dinner, and that was it. That was the whole plan. People lost weight doing that. So, if you do that on your updates, low carb breakfast, low carb lunch, regular dinner maybe still not if you don't eat bread, pasta rice usually but just allowing yourself to have more whole food carbs in that dinner. So, 36-hour fast, up day where you try low carb breakfast, low carb lunch, and then maybe slightly up your carb intake at dinner, see how that goes. See how that makes you feel. That might make you feel better. If it doesn't, if you still feel terrible on the days after your what are now 36-hour fast instead of 40-hour fast, if you still wake up feeling terrible, I want you to restructure your down day.  

Maybe on your down day, you have a low carb dinner instead. So, it would look like on what's your down day, instead of having a complete full fast, you would have a down day that has a low carb dinner. And then the next day, low carb breakfast, low carb lunch, higher carb dinner, and then just alternate that. See if what you're doing isn't just too restrictive. Because really the hair falling out, the fact that you're doing three 42-hour fasts, the fact that you're having trouble. The fact that, that you're seeing weight gain on one meal a day, that just makes me feel you might need to do just a little something else. You might be over-restricting. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, between Gin and me, I think we're going to offer a lot of different options. I'm glad that Gin took the approach of still keeping in the longer fast, but just not quite as long. So, that's definitely an option. I would probably suggest not doing any longer fasts. Gin was just talking about how the fact that you gain weight on one meal a day or shorter fasts is signifying that there's a lot that you can work with what you're actually eating in your eating window. Because I feel you should be able to find an eating pattern and a one meal a day pattern where you at the very least maintain, which would be my goal. So, my goal would be next 42-hour fast, I think what you're doing is sounds way too restrictive.  

You're 10 pounds from your goal weight, that's always when it's the hardest. You wake up exhausted, you don't feel good. You said, you feel good once you get going. That's probably from adrenaline kicking in. Your hair's falling out, I would stop. I would stop these long fasts, I would not do them. I would suggest trying one meal a day, every day, and really working on the food choices. Don't even try to lose weight. Just find something that maintains and then you can move forward to losing weight. I almost wonder if the fact that you're doing three 42-hour fasts, if the weight loss that you perceive that you're losing and the weight gain that you perceive that you're gaining, if it's literally just volume of food.  

Gin Stephens: Fluctuations from volume of food.  

Melanie Avalon: By 42 hours, you've probably lost the physical volume of all the food and then you're probably not retaining water. So, then when you eat, you probably gain back volume wise, just food, and then it's like if you were to keep doing one meal a day, you might feel you're gaining weight, but it's really just that now you have a volume of food in you every day that you didn't have before. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's so true. People do find that to be the case. I've actually had people say, “Gosh, every time I shorten my eating window, I gain weight. I don't gain weight on a six-hour window, but if I have a 1-hour window, I gain, gain. gain.” Really, I think it's just the volume of the food sits differently in the body when you eat it all in a constrained window, and then it causes you to even retain water differently, because a bulk of that food is moving through your system in a different way.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, I think just psychologically, the way you're interpreting the game might have a lot to do with that. It's just seems so restrictive to me. A lot of people are really, really proud of themselves if they do one 42-hour fast and you're doing it three times a week. I think there's so much potential. For what I would suggest to do if you want to try one meal a day, well, first of all, like I said, accept the fact that you're going to “gain some weight,” but it's the volume. You're going to need to do it long enough for that to stabilize to actually see what is weight gain, and weight loss, and what like I just mentioned, the volume. 

You're doing low carb. We don't know what foods you're eating in low carb. I don't know if this is something that you're doing, but a lot of people in the low carb sphere, don't lose weight, even if it's working for them because they think that low carb means unlimited fat. But if you're eating enough fat to the point where you're not tapping into your body fat, you're probably not going to lose weight. I think this is one of the biggest things that people experience in the low carb world when they can't lose weight.  

I don't know if you're adding fats to your food. I don't know if you're just doing low carb like low carb foods or if you are also adding fats. A lot of people when they do low carb, they're adding olive oil or butter, maybe even cheese. If you're doing any of that, I would stop doing that and replace it with more protein. So, focusing on lean protein because that's the most satiating, that's the most thermogenic, meaning it's going to stimulate your metabolism the most. That's the least likely to become fat as a macronutrient. So, if you want to stay with low carb depending on what you're doing, reconceptualize it. Focus on the protein, focus on not adding fat. If you want to add fat, I say this a lot, but I would add C8 MCT oil. That's actually very pro-metabolic. So, that's a way to sort of like--  

Because some people's metabolisms on low carb-- and it's not a bad thing. But they might actually slow down a little bit just because of the nature of the macronutrients and I found that adding C8 MCT oil actually can combat that a little bit, because it's very thermogenic, and metabolism stroking, and to clarify, not in your fast, with your food. I'll put a link in the show notes to the one that I really like. As far as the carbs go, I know you said that you only lose weight if you are low carb. But I really like what Gin was saying about the potential of-- what is it called, where you add in the carb days? 

Gin Stephens: It's the carbohydrate addicts’ diet. Because since Sarah has PCOS, we know that insulin is likely a big issue for her. So, getting the insulin down more should be something that she targets. That's why low carb is so beneficial for people with PCOS.  

Melanie Avalon: I misheard. So, the carbohydrate addicts' diet, you don't have carbs, do you?  

Gin Stephens: You do. You have a low carb breakfast, low carb lunch and a “regular dinner.” 

Melanie Avalon: Okay. So, I would suggest something similar. If you're going to do a one meal a day thing, having low carb days, then if you want to have a day with carbs as a carb up, so, it's like cyclical keto or something like that, having a carb up day in your one meal a day and making it very high carb, but making it very low fat for that day. 

Gin Stephens: I want to also say that you're likely to see a four-pound weight gain the next day after a high carb day after being low carb, and that is why people think, “Oh my gosh, I gain with carbs.” No, that's water weight. You did not gain four pounds of fat overnight from a high carb day. I actually did a program years and years and years and years ago back in my trying all the diets day. It was called Carb Nite. I've talked about that before, Melanie?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. 

Gin Stephens: Keifer. Yep, yep. Carb Nite. The whole point of that was, your low carb for like-- I can't remember. I guess six days a week, and then one night a week, you have Carb Nite. It was where you added in lots and lots of carbs, and you're really trying to get those carbs in it, and he had the whole scientific reason why he recommended that because it keeps our hormones from-- Anyway, all the things that are said to happen when you're low carb with your hormones, this prevents all that. So, it's keeps your metabolism going a thing. It's been a long time, years since I read that work. But the whole premise was once a week, Carb Nite. You had to understand that after the Carb Nite, your weight was going to skyrocket. But it wasn't all fat. It's the water weight, and that comes because carbohydrates make us retain water, hydrate water.  

Melanie Avalon: For the Carb Nite, you do focus on being lower fat as well. That protocol works really, really well for a lot of people. That's probably the protocol I would actually recommend, would be a one meal a day situation, making the low carb days low carb, making them very high protein and not adding any fats. If you do add fats, add the MCT and then have a Carb Nite one night a week where you do high carb, low fat. 

Gin Stephens: No, I don't recall it being high carb-low fat because I remember I was in the community for a while. This was a long, long time ago. There was a Facebook group for it. I recall us eating things like gelato and we were not low fat. So, I don't know if we all were doing it wrong, but I don't recall the emphasis being low fat. 

Melanie Avalon: I think if I recall correctly and I can double check, I think he suggests, you're allowed to have fat, but I think he suggests you start with carbs. The idea is to fill up, and then if you're still hungry at the end, that's when you add in the fat but you don't start with the fat. 

Gin Stephens: That's not how I remember it but again, I could be misremembering it. 

Melanie Avalon: Or, might be the other way around. But there's an order to it.  

Gin Stephens: I just know, I was not doing low fat in there too. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, well, that's the thing is you can have it. I'm pretty sure. Because I read this a few months ago, and I think there's an order to it. 

Gin Stephens: Also, it could have been revised since then maybe he revised his recommendations since whenever it was I was doing it years ago. That is entirely possible. 

Melanie Avalon: Regardless of what he writes, I personally believe that if you make that high carb day low fat, then what's so incredible about it is, if you've been low carb, so you've been a fat burning ketogenic metabolism, lowering insulin, when you have that carb up day, you get all of the metabolic benefits of carbs. So, thyroid stimulating, metabolism, promoting filling up your glycogen stores throughout muscle, and your liver, if you do that in the context of high protein, high carb, low fat, it's actually-- even though, you'll most likely gain water weight, it's actually unlikely that you will gain much weight at all. So, it's like you get to have this. 

Gin Stephens: You're not really gaining fat. You see it on the scale. But that's what I don't want people to be freaked out about is like, “Oh my gosh, look at the scale. I'm up. I've gained all this fat from this. See, my body can't eat carbs.” That is not what that means. 

Melanie Avalon: Right. If you do eat fat on that high carb meal, you're going to store whatever fat. Basically, that's where you can see it. If you do this high carb day, this carb up day, basically, see it as whatever fat you eat that day you are most likely going to store. 

Gin Stephens: Not if it's not over what you needed.  

Melanie Avalon: True.  

Gin Stephens: Just because you eat fat doesn't mean your store it. I eat fat every day and I'm not storing a bunch of fat. I eat fat and carbs together every day. Only in the paradigm of now you're overeating. If you're overeating, what's leftover will be stored.  

Melanie Avalon: When I'm saying in my head is a lot of people who do this carb up, they make it really intense. It's like the big feast day. 

Gin Stephens: The cheat day kind of paradigm which is not really what it's supposed to be.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, right. Exactly.  

Gin Stephens: I don't like the idea of cheat day anyway. 

Melanie Avalon: So, let us know, Sarah. Let us know how it all goes. I will also-- just because I mentioned this last week, I'm reading Dr. Michael Platt's book about Adrenaline Dominance, and he really recommends and-- I started doing it. He really recommends progesterone cream for all hormonal issues really. But he actually recommends it right before eating for insulin sensitivity, which was really interesting. Apparently, if you take it right before eating, it's only in the bloodstream for a brief amount of time. It can possibly help you with your insulin response. 

Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about Prep Dish and what they have going on for you this summer. Summer is my favorite season. I'm sure that you've heard me say that before. But one thing about summer is that we are busy. That's why I'm so excited to tell you about the free bonus menu Prep Dish is offering this month, and it's only good through the end of June. 

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

Gin Stephens: Yes, and this is from Evelyn and the subject is "Non-scale victory and donating blood." She says, “Hello, ladies. My name is Evelyn and I have been doing Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat protocol for just over a year. I would like to report a few non-scale victories and ask one question. First a bit about me. I am 51 years old, a mother of four adult children, happily married for nearly 30 years, and work at home as a private piano teacher. Mid July 2020, during the middle of COVID and shutdown, I was taking inventory of my life. My weight was the highest it had ever been at 210 pounds.” Gosh, I just want to say, we have so much in common, Evelyn. I only have two children, not four. But I've been married for 30 years, I got up to 210, so many similarities. I'm 52, you're 51. Anyway, back to the question.  

She said, “I was entering into menopause. A few more months and I will be past that famous one-year mark. I was charting my blood work from several years past and began to see that the trend was getting higher and higher in almost every category. I could see the writing on the wall that medicine would be in my future, kind of depressing. When my girlfriend graciously shared her copies of your two books, Gin, I read them both in two days and started immediately. I was a rip the bandage off kind of girl. My first hope of course was to lose weight, which I have. I am currently 158 pounds with about 10 to 15 pounds to go. But I also wanted to work on my blood work. I'd like to report this year my wellness checkup that all my numbers improved, and are once again within normal ranges.”  

Melanie Avalon: Hooray. I'm cheering. That was me cheering for Evelyn.  

Gin Stephens: “My total cholesterol dropped 30 points and the nurse said, that doesn't usually happen without medicine. Amazing. My blood pressure and blood glucose numbers are near perfect and today I saw my eye doctor for the first time in a year. He made the comment that the health of my eye looks like a 20-year-old. He has never said that in all the years I've seen him. He mentioned that my eye pressure, which I take daily drops for, has gone down. He seemed pleased with that. I also realized today that I no longer have any floaters. They've disappeared." For anyone who doesn't know that's, when you see these little spots like floating in your field of vision that just pop up. You think there's like something floating in the air, but it's just something in your eye, in your field of vision.  

All right, she said, "They've disappeared. That must be autophagy at work doing its thing, cleaning up the old and used up parts. It's been exciting to see how my health has improved in such unsuspecting ways because of IF. Okay, my question, as part of my turning 50 and becoming an empty nester, losing weight, and just enjoying life in this new season, I started giving blood. I have never done it before and so, unwittingly went to the blood drive without eating breakfast, a good 12 to 14 hours into my fast. I got through all the screenings with good “grades” and then they casually asked me, “You've had a good breakfast, right?” “Um, no, I hadn't.” They almost turned me away. I promised them that I am very much used to not having breakfast and that if I were to get dizzy, I would tell them. I know that for many people who are not fat adapted, giving blood without their regular source of energy stocked up may not be good. But do you know if you must or even should eat either before and after, and when donating blood? They also offered food afterwards too. I will gladly break my fast to give blood several times a year if I must, but must I? Can you see a day when this eating protocol is different as more and more IF people show up at blood drives? Thank you for fielding this question and rejoicing with me on the non-scale victories."  

After reading this, I'm so curious. I wish Evelyn had said how she felt after giving blood in the fasted state because that would be very instructive. Because she said, they almost turned her away, but it sounds like they didn't which sounds like she followed through giving blood in the fasted state and in which case, it would be very interesting to see how she felt because I'm a big believer in listen to your own body, and how you feel, and if she felt perfectly fine after giving blood, that would be a big indication that it works well for her body. Again, they have food afterwards. If you feel that dizzy, low blood sugar, there's something there you could eat it. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because it does sound like she actually gave the blood. When I first heard her question, I was thinking she didn't. Let us know, Evelyn, if you did give the one the fastest day and how you felt. I will note, she was saying that maybe because she's fat adapted, that she would be less likely to be dizzy or faint. I do not recommend people give blood in the fasted state. It's actually not about blood sugar, it's about blood pressure. So, it's not something that has to do with your fat burning metabolism. So, not everybody faints, but it just has to-- Well, obviously, because people are fainting left and right. But it has to do with how your body reacts to a perceived blood pressure dropped that can happen pretty quickly from giving a large amount of blood. It's obviously up to you if you want to try. I have fainted before with blood, and it's a very unpleasant experience, and I don't wish it on anybody. It's not terrible, but if you haven't fainted, it's surprising. 

Gin Stephens: I have never fainted ever, not in my entire life. You probably could have guessed that, right?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I probably could have.  

Gin Stephens: Has Gin ever fainted? Yes, or no? No, Gin has not. 

Melanie Avalon: Has Melanie? Yes. It's just funny. I have only fainted once from a blood draw, and it was forever ago. But still, just because it's such an intense experience-- because you feel like you're dying because you don't know what's happening and then, you wake up and you don't know what happened, and it's just not pleasant, and what's really interesting, I do blood tests all the time, listeners know this. All the time. I still get nervous now because I fainted that one time, maybe this is something I can work on with a therapist or something. but I still get nervous. Even though I'm like a champ at blood tests. I'm always worried I'm going to faint. I do all my blood tests fasted, obviously, because we have to be usually fasted for blood tests. 

But giving blood is a whole another-- I would just be really nervous to be completely fasted and do a blood draw. But I would love to hear it. If any listeners who are doing fasting, I would love to hear their experience. So, yeah. I do think that's really interesting, though, that it's not related to blood sugar. Oh, something that has reassured me though about just getting blood tests is that the amount of blood they take for a normal blood test, it's negligible as far as your body reacting to it. So, if you faint from a blood test like I did, that's usually psychosomatic. It's not going to be because of this massive blood pressure drop most likely, that is possible when you're giving blood. Or, it could be psychosomatic blood pressure drop. But my point is, when you're giving blood, it's a physical amount of blood that can create that blood pressure drop compared to when you're getting a blood test where it's actually not a huge difference in your overall blood stream. Fun fact. Any thoughts, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Well, this is just one of those things that I'm not comfortable saying yes or no to. I'm not going to say yes, fast or no, don't fast, because that's not-- I would always follow the recommendations of medical professionals before any procedure, even giving blood. If you're not doing it very often, go later in the day after you've eaten. If they want you to have something to eat before you get blood, go when your window is open. Then, now, we don't even have to worry about it. You're not having to sacrifice your fast or making them happy and whatever the reason is, maybe the reason is wrong and you don't need to, but I'm not going to say that. I would do it later, personally, when my window was already open just to not even have to ask the question or worry about it. That's just what I have to say about that. I never want to go against a medical professional. Does that mean I think every medical professional is always got the most updated information? No. We know that things change. Protocols change, recommendations change, doctors have different ideas about things, research changes. So, follow the advice. If you go to give blood and they say you should have had breakfast, then have something to eat, come back later. Go during your window. Better safe than sorry.  

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. If you eat, you're much less likely to faint, and then it will much more likely be a successful blood draw.  

Gin Stephens: Exactly.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, our next question comes from Stephanie. The subject is "Four-three window." Stephanie says, “Hello, I just love you girls. I've been doing IF for three months, and I'm down 25 pounds. I just love it. I recently started the four-three window. I only have 500 calories on Monday, Wednesday, Friday. I've always done a 20:4 window. I was just wondering on my up days, do I fast for 20 hours still or can I start eating whenever I get hungry on my up days? Also, I'm a fitness instructor. So, I burn about 1000 extra calories a day and exercise. Should I up my low days to 1000 calories or stay at 500 calories? Thanks so much. So thankful for your podcast.” 

Gin Stephens: Well, this is a great question, Stephanie and I can answer it pretty quickly. Please do not fast for 20 hours on your up days. No, no, no, no, no. There's a lot of confusion with up days. And the research that was done on alternate daily fasting, they did not have any sort of fasting paradigm or window on updates. I mean, none. They were not instructed to skip breakfast, eat breakfast, eat in a window. They were just told on a down day, depending on the study, some down days were full fasts, and some down days were 500 calories depending on the study. And the up day was just, now you eat. So, they had the down day protocol they were following whether it was 500 calories or zero calories. Then the update, they were just instructed to eat normally. So, I'm pretty sure there was nobody in those studies that was also continuing to fast on the up day.  

We don't have data on that. We have no research on that. Maybe, there was somebody. When I say I'm pretty sure there wasn't, no, it wasn't reported in this study. Probably most of them ate breakfast, lunch, and dinner. That is why I make the recommendation for an up day to purposefully make sure you're eating at least two meals, at least six to eight hours. Just because it's hard for some of us that have been doing intermittent fasting with the time-restricted eating for a while. It's hard for us to wake up and have breakfast at 7 in the morning. So, we feel better delaying our breakfast or not eating first thing when we get up. But we need to consciously make sure we're eating at least two meals, at least a window of six to eight hours. But again, notice that at least that doesn't mean, okay, well then, I'm going to do six every day, that first question that we answered from Sarah, she's doing three 42-hour fasts a week. Just because I say at least six to eight hours doesn't mean all right, I'm going to go with six, because I'm really dedicated. Sometimes, we feel like more is better and it's not always. 

With alternate daily fasting, they found the metabolism didn't slow down from that alternate-- that rhythm. But the up days, they were eating more, of course, we don't recommend calorie counting. There's a lot of flaws with that, but I'm going to use the word 'calories' in terms of energy intake, they were eating more calories, then their bodies needed on the up days. I can't remember the percentage, 100 and something percent of their daily caloric needs on up days. So, you want to eat more food. It needs to be up. You want to slightly overeat on up days. So, if you're comparing an up day to a normal day when you're not doing intermittent fasting, you want to slightly overeat on an up day. If you're doing a four-hour eating window on an up day, are you going to be slightly overeating? Doubtful.  

Oh, for the other part of Stephanie's question, the research on alternate daily fasting, they were right around 500 calories, and it didn't matter how active you were, if you were a man, if you were a little tiny woman, it was just. “Hey, let's just do 500 calories.” If you want to have 1000 calories, you could do your own approach to it. It won't be exactly the same as the researched alternate daily fasting, but if your body needs more than that 500 calories down day, you just try it and see if it works for you. That would be okay. Because you're still having that-- It's like a hybrid approach or you're modifying it. You just don't want to over restrict. You don't want to err on the side of over-restriction is my point. 

Melanie Avalon: That was great. I was going to say it was-- You used my word 'hybrid approach.' I guess the thing to clarify is just in general with ADF, it's not like you adjust your calorie intake based on your activity to do ADF, which I think might be the confusion maybe for people. They think, “Oh, it's 500 calories, but I adjust for my activity.”  

Gin Stephens: Everybody was assigned the same 500 calories on the down days. Although in Dr. Johnson's book, I can't remember the title of it but it was one of the early ADF books out there, he actually did have like men can-- maybe 600 calories. I don't know. There was a little bit of variability in there, but he was just basing it all just on calories. It was before we really understood, there's a lot more going on than just calories. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to put a link in the show notes. I'm listening to an interview. It's the latest interview on Peter Attia. It's with Steve Austad, PhD. It's making me so happy. They're diving deep into studies on calorie restriction, especially because there have been quite a few studies that have been confusing. There was the one in the rhesus monkey studies and the monkeys on whole foods diet versus I don't know the exact details, but it was calorie-restricted monkeys on either a whole foods type diet or calorie-restricted monkeys on a processed diet. 

Gin Stephens: I don't think I've ever seen a monkey study with ultra-processed and whole foods. 

Melanie Avalon: I don't think it was one study. I think it was two different institutions. But it's been something that has been perplexing, because I believe there was greater benefits in the process diet monkeys. Basically, the takeaway was that when you're eating a whole foods diet, there might be less benefit to gain from calorie restriction compared to when you're on a processed diet. That's been a conundrum, and then there was something I talked about when I interviewed Dr. Steven Gundry. There were two different mice studies looking at mice on processed diet or whole foods, and perplexing findings with the mice eating the processed diet experiencing greater benefits. I don't know if it's because it was like protein amounts. But Dr. Steven Gundry's theory and it's the theory that I immediately thought of when I read it was that by eating a processed diet-- because they only put out the food a certain amount of time. By eating the processed food diet, it actually created a longer fast because they ate it so fast and it was digested fast. 

In any case, there's been a lot of really interesting studies on calorie restriction in rodents and monkeys and perplexing findings, and so, if you listen to that episode with Peter Attia there, I'm only halfway through it, but they're diving deep into it. They also talk about that famous calorie restriction study. You know the biosphere where the people went in? They were talking about that too. And he's been talking about how calorie restriction in rodents in the wild actually, probably does not lead to longevity. It actually reduces lifespan. I'll put a link to it. It's really, really interesting.  

Gin Stephens: That does sound really interesting.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, but you did an excellent job answering that question. [giggles] Gin's got it.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I know how to answer these questions because I've heard them all in the Facebook groups back in the day. That's why I love helping people. Melanie is the one who loves what are the monkeys doing. [laughs] I mean that with love Melanie and I'm like, “Let me tell you the nuts and bolts of this of how you can make this work for your life with your question." [laughs]   

Melanie Avalon: I think that's why you make a good team.  

Gin Stephens: I think so too. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. Again, the show notes will be at ifpodcast.com/episode229. There will be a full transcript there, all of the links. I'm plugging it again, definitely get on my email list for the serrapeptase at melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. You can submit your own questions for the show, just directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast. I'm @melanieavalon and Gin is @ginstephens. 

All right, well, this has been absolutely wonderful. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?  

Gin Stephens: No. I think that's it. Next time, I will be coming to you from the beach.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. I'm excited. [laughs] I'll talk to you then.  

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 podcast, Intermittent Fasting Stories, and the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. The music was composed by Leland Cox. See you next week. 

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Gin: GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

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

 

 

Aug 29

Episode 228: Kidney Failure, Hormones, Night Sweats, Low Sex Drive, HRT, Birth Control, Medicine & Weight Gain, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 228 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast, hosted by Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine and Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living An Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

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

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SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get 6 Burgers, 8 Hot Dogs, And Up To 3 Lbs Of Chicken Breasts For FREE!

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20:30 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - IUD

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EPISODE 25: DEMYSTIFYING MENOPAUSE: FROM PRE- TO POST-, WITH DR. ANNA CABECA

EPISODE 26: SEXUAL HEALTH AND LIBIDO, WITH DR. ANNA CABECA

42:40 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To masszymes.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

44:55 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - So Discouraged

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TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 228 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing your when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.commelanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. 

Hi friends. I'm about to tell you how you can get six free grass-fed burgers, eight heritage-breed pork hot dogs, and up to three pounds of organic free-range chicken breasts all for free. Yes, for free. We are so honored to be sponsored by ButcherBox. They make it so, so easy to get high-quality, humanely raised meat that you can trust. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage-breed pork, that's really hard to find by the way, and wild-caught sustainable and responsible seafood shipped directly to your door. 

When you become a member, you're joining a community focused on doing what's better for everyone, that includes caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect and enjoying deliciously better meals together. There is a lot of confusion out there when it comes to transparency, regarding raising practices, what is actually in our food, how animals are being treated. I did so much research on ButcherBox, you can actually check out my blog post all about it at melanieavalon.com/ButcherBox. But I am so grateful for all of the information that I learned about their company. All of their beef is 100% grass fed and grass finished, that's really hard to find, and they work personally with all the farmers to truly support the regenerative agriculture system. I also did an interview with Robb Wolf on my show, the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, all about the massive importance of supporting regenerative agriculture for the sustainability of not only ourselves but the planet, this is so important to me. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. 

If you recently saw a documentary on Netflix called Seaspiracy, you might be a little bit nervous about eating seafood. Now, I understand why ButcherBox makes it so, so clear and important about how they work with the seafood industry. Everything is checked for transparency for quality and for sustainable raising practices. You want their seafood. The value is incredible. The average cost is actually less than $6 per meal. And it's so easy, everything ships directly to your door.  

I am a huge steak lover. Every time I go to a restaurant, I usually order the steak. Oh, my goodness, the ButcherBox steaks are amazing. I remember the first time I had one and I just thought this is honestly one of the best steaks I've ever had in my entire life. On top of that, did you know that the fatty acid profile of grass-fed, grass-finished steaks is much healthier for you than conventional steaks. And their bacon, for example, is from pastured pork and sugar and nitrate free. How hard is that to find. 

ButcherBox has an incredible deal to help you savor the rest of the summer. For a limited time, new members can get six free grass-fed burgers, eight heritage-breed pork hotdogs, and up to three pounds of organic free-range chicken breasts all for free when you sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. That's butcherbox.com/ifpodcast for free burgers, hot dogs, and chicken breasts in your first box. 

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters which mess with our hormones, obesogens which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare and makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know that conventional lipstick for example often tests high for lead, and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body. 

Thankfully, there's an easy, easy solution to this. There's a company called Beautycounter and they were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient and their products is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, you can actually feel good about what you put on. And on top of that, their products actually work. That's because they're not “all natural.” They actually combine the best of both worlds, both synthetic and natural ingredients, to create products that actually support the health of your skin and make your skin look amazing. They have skincare lines for all your skin types, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, antiaging and brightening peels and vitamin C serums, and incredible makeup. If you see my makeup on Instagram, that's all Beautycounter. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter 

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

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 228 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here Gin Stephens.  

Gin Stephens: Hi everybody.  

Melanie Avalon: How are you today, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Well, I have some interesting news to share. We have a diabetic cat, officially diabetic. Our cat is diabetic. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Gin, we just found out our cat is diabetic.  

Gin Stephens: Really? Is it your parents’ cat?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. Like our family cat from--  

Gin Stephens: Yep. Well, we have three cats, and one of them, Ringo was acting weird, and I thought he might have a bladder infection or something. I took him to the vet and they're like, “Well, his bladder has no infection, but his blood glucose is 380 something.” I'm like, “Oh, that seems high for a cat.” [laughs] Is it the same for people? Yeah, I’ll try to find that out. Apparently, it's not exactly the same for people, but 380, that was high. Now, he gets insulin twice a day.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, our cat was, I think my dad said over 500.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, that is high. That's really high.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Makes me really sad. I do wonder--  

Gin Stephens: Is he getting insulin? Is your cat getting insulin?  

Melanie Avalon: I'm not sure. This is like a really new development. I'm not sure yet.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, it just happened for us too. We went back to have it rechecked just to make sure and it was still that high. Then, they kept him overnight and tried to figure out the right dose for him. Because with cats, you don't have to test their blood glucose personally. They just told me how much insulin to give them, and so we're giving it to him twice a day, and then I have to go back next week, and they're going to just make sure. We don't want him to have too much insulin, so they're going to check and save it. I just give it to him while he's eating, and he doesn't even notice.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. First thing I said, I was like, “Can we put her on a low carb diet?”  

Gin Stephens: They can, actually. They have a special cat food for that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think if I was taking care of her, that's what I would do.  

Gin Stephens: Our problem is that we have three cats, and they have a special diabetic cat food, but I looked at the ingredients, they were not impressive to me, and it seemed to have a lot of things in there still, and it was very pricey. I'm not going to feed all three of my cats this special diabetic food. So, we did up the quality of our food. We got a different kind of food, not theirs, that wanted us to take, and we got a different kind, still higher quality than we had been feeding them.  

Melanie Avalon: I would probably like to make the food myself. I was feeding them freeze dried raw food. It was probably-- 

Melanie Avalon: Well, they get some wet food in the morning. They all get-- it's meat. It's a meaty tinned cat food, the meat with gravy or whatever. Then, they have the dry cat food for the rest of the day when they want to have some.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: Anyway, interesting that yours also has diabetes. I'd never really heard a lot about it, and everybody's like, “Oh, yeah, me too.” Apparently, it's very common. I was freaking out. I'm like, “I don't want to get this--,” and he's like, “It's no big deal,” the vet. 

Melanie Avalon: My mom, she said this matter of factly, I was laughing, she basically said, all cats die of kidney disease. I was like, “Is that a true statement, mom?” 

Gin Stephens: They usually do get kidney disease. A lot of them do. We've had two that I know of that died of kidney disease. Maybe we're just feeding them really the wrong foods.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm sure that's what it is. I'm not sure of anything, but-- 

Gin Stephens: Well, if they're all getting kidney disease or maybe they're not supposed to live as long as they're living in the wild. Maybe cats wouldn't normally live this long.  

Melanie Avalon: But it's really interesting that it's kidney disease.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. That's true, which makes me feel like it's something that we're feeding them. 

Melanie Avalon: I think so. Yeah, because cats are carnivores. We're not feeding them a carnivore diet. We're feeding them carbs.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's what we changed their food a lot.  

Melanie Avalon: I feel like it's one of the best examples of what happens when you put a species on a diet that's not suited to. 

Gin Stephens: That's not right for them.  

Melanie Avalon: Well.  

Gin Stephens: Well, poor Ringo. You can tell he feels better though already. He's back to his old happier self.  

Melanie Avalon: That's good. Well, I have two exciting updates.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, I can't wait to hear them. 

Melanie Avalon: One, you already know, but I interviewed Robb Wolf again, this week. Listeners, out of the hundred plus guests I've had on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, he is my favorite. 

Gin Stephens: That's amazing. Already over a hundred.  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. 

Gin Stephens: It just feels like you just started that.  

Melanie Avalon: I know.  

Gin Stephens: What? You've already-- I swear, it feels like you just started that podcast, and you do one a week, you've been doing it for over 100 weeks.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the episode that came out this past Friday was Episode 105.  

Gin Stephens: Wow. Well, congratulations. That's exciting. I know when you have somebody that you really admire-- 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I try not to fangirl quite as much, but I was overwhelmingly fangirling as per usual. But the episode will not be out by the time this comes out but it will be at melanieavalon.com/electrolytes. I wanted to do a foundational educational episode on electrolytes. So many of our listeners have benefited from LMNT, because that's Robb's company. Oh, it is really fascinating. He's just so smart. I just think he's very nuanced, and not biased in his opinions on things. So, I really, really respect him. 

Then, the second update, listeners, you can officially go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase, and that's where you can get on the email list for my new serrapeptase supplement, and we're going to do a preorder special. We haven't come up with the exact specifics, but we're probably going to do a tiered thing where like-- because we're only doing 1200 bottles for the first order. So, I think we're going to do something where the first one hundred people get the lowest price, and then the next 400 will be a slightly higher price, and then the remaining. But either way, the preorder price, it's probably never going to be that low again. We're doing a special just for the preorder. So, definitely get on that email list, because I don't know. I think it might sell out for the preorder. So, I'm very excited.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Anything else new in your world?  

Gin Stephens: No. [laughs] Just giving shots to a cat twice a day. So, that's the thing. We're going to have to be around them all the time, and when I go to the beach, I'm going for three weeks. I'm leaving in a week. Chad's going to have to do it. If we go somewhere together, the two of us, I guess we have to board him. He is not going to like that. Oh, my gosh, he hated being at the vet overnight.  

Melanie Avalon: Have you boarded them before?  

Gin Stephens: Well, we have. The couple of times we rented our house for Masters, you have to get your pets out of the house. I think we only rented our house twice. It was a long time ago. When we did it, and now, I was like, “I hate this.” Part of it was taken all the cats to the vet and boarding them. I didn't like the thought of that. Also, your house, when you go on vacation, just going on vacation is stressful enough. Now, imagine your house has to be perfect, and that it has to be not just perfect, but you're having guests there that are paying you thousands of dollars to stay in your home? [laughs] Yeah, this is when the boys were at home, and I'm like, “No one use that bathroom. Do not go in that bathroom.” Then sure enough, someone would go use that bathroom. I'm like, “What is happening?" I said, "Don't use that.” It was not worth it to me.  

Melanie Avalon: That's a lot to deal with.  

Gin Stephens: It is a lot. so.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I just like to have my space with me, and--  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you have to put things away and you're like what if they're going through my underwear drawer, I better put my underwear all away. It’s just-- 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, goodness, I'd be so stressed.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, imagine. It's just for a week and you're having to clear out for total strangers and you also hear horror stories. We had great renters. They’ve worked for a Canadian sports casting company. The two years that we rented, they were fantastic. So, they were the camera crew and on air, whoever. They came to our house and they worked. They were working most of the day at the Masters. They just came back and apparently, they drank a lot of wine and beer while they were at our house, because they left all that. We could see. But they were not in the house a lot. It's when you have a different kind of groups of people that it can get rowdy and that's when the horror stories come in. I think some of the best people to have are the golfers themselves. Like our neighbor rents to the golfers.  

Melanie Avalon: No renting for me. 

Gin Stephens: No. I hate to put the pets and they don't like it. They don't understand, they're in this little cage. I don't know. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, in any case, shall we move on to everything for today?  

Gin Stephens: Yep, let's get started.  

Melanie Avalon: All right, so to start things off, we have some feedback from Megan. The subject is, "No more medicines." Megan says, "Hi ladies. I, so enjoy listening to your podcast. I have been learning so much. My husband suggested that I write to tell you about the amazing results I've seen since starting to fast last month. I started by reading Gin's book, Delay, Don't Deny. I started June 18th at 236 pounds and I am already down to 215. I have gone down a pant size. I would like to get down to 135 or so, but this is the first time I really believe it will happen," and she has a smiley face emoji. She says, "And I'm postmenopausal. I have also stopped taking meds for heartburn/reflux, apple cider vinegar capsules, Prilosec and Tums, and allergies." She was taking Zyrtec, Flonase and Breathe Right strips, "No more snoring. My heart rate has gone down to 40 BPM to 50 BPM while I'm sleeping, and I'm waking up only once in the middle of the night. I'm thinking more clearly at work. My rosacea has cleared up quite a bit. I have not had any headaches. It really has changed my life. I thank you so much for helping me get started. My boyfriend is so impressed with what he's seeing that he is going to start soon as well. Thanks again, Meg. 

Gin Stephens: That's awesome. Meg, thank you so much for letting us know. That is really quick for all those positive benefits. 

Melanie Avalon: I think it's just wonderful. I feel so many people start IF to lose weight, and then they experience all of these other benefits that they didn't even anticipate. 

Gin Stephens: That's it. The health plan with the side effect of weight loss, I really believe it.  

Melanie Avalon: I've been wanting to share this on the podcast, and this sparked my memory, for histamine intolerance. I have been taking Ancestral Supplements desiccated kidney. I'm shocked by the effects it has on my, what I perceive, is probably histamine intolerance. It's incredible. So, I really recommend people if they at all struggle with histamine, they try-- it contains DAO, which is the enzyme that breaks down histamine that can really help support that if people are struggling with that.  

Gin Stephens: Very cool. There's so many things going on in our bodies. That's just something we have to keep in mind all the time. Which is why, there's no one size fits all answer for pretty much anything, because we all have bazillions of things, that's the official term. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Well, I'm really curious. My mom has been struggling with her kidneys. I really want her to start taking it, because a lot of people report that they've been able to reverse kidney disease with it even though doctors say that kidney disease is not reversible. But my mom, she's coming around. She's like, "My doctor says it's not reversible, but I know it is." I think I shared the story before but she had really high cholesterol and our doctor said that she needed to go on statins. She decided to change her diet, she drastically lowered her cholesterol and her doctor was like, “I guess you can change [laughs] by diet.” Now, she's on that diet train to fix things which is really cool.  

Gin Stephens: That really is. So much power in the food.  

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Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Sarah, and the subject is "IUD." She says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie, huge fan of both of you and all your work. IF changed my life and has become such an important part of my healthy lifestyle. After Melanie's recent interview with Dr. Will Cole, I began listening to his podcast. He interviewed Leanne Vogel, and she had a lot of interesting insights about adjusting your fasting based on menstrual cycles to optimize the benefits. I have an IUD," and she put in parenthesis, Mirena, "implanted and I don't get a period. I've had the Mirena for 10 years now and love the ease and effectiveness of this type of birth control, and have had no complaints or side effects. 

I've been fasting for a year and a half and usually do a 20:4 window. I've been at my ideal weight into a primarily for the health benefits specifically to manage GI distress, heartburn/reflux, and blood sugar crashes/hangriness. I'm 41 years old, and I eat pescatarian with very minimal processed food. Most of the time, I feel great, but I do have days where I just feel bleh and low energy. I, sometimes think maybe it's my allergies. I sometimes think it's low electrolytes. So, I started taking the element supplements. But now I have another factor to consider. Is it my body cycles, even though I do not get a period, what are your thoughts? Thank you in advance and keep up the good work.”  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, this is a great question from Sarah, and I was excited to include it because I recently read Alisa Vitti’s, In the FLO book, and I learned a lot in that book about the female cycle. I learned so much, and I also since then also read Stephanie Estima, The Betty Body, and also learned a lot about the female cycle. So, it's been a lot of education for me personally. I don't personally agree with Alisa Vitti’s, her entire perspective on fasting, but I do think there was a lot of valuable information in her book. She thinks when you're on birth control, hormonal or not-- because IUDs can be hormonal or not. 

Gin Stephens: And the Merina is hormonal, by the way.  

Melanie Avalon: She says the body does still cycle and experience the effects of the cycle. I couldn't find any studies talking about this specifically. Most of the literature on it was saying that because of the hormones involved that you're not cycling, if your period goes away entirely, that you are existing in this different hormonal state. It's really interesting, because on the hormonal IUD, some people do still cycle and some people don't. What it all says to me is that I think it's very possible that this could be happening. It's hard to know, but I think it could be. Do you have thoughts on it, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Really what you said, I think. Also, sometimes, we just feel bleh and have low energy. I'm on the other side of menopause. So, my hormones are not doing the same thing that they had been doing. Sometimes, I feel bleh compared to other days. It just happens sometimes. There's so many causes out there that could lead to you not feeling your best. It's absolutely impossible for us to ever know. Sometimes, you can't even know what it is when it's you personally going through it, you're trying to figure it out, but you definitely can't know for somebody else. Does that make sense?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: If you notice that you felt bleh every 28 days, maybe make a note of it. That would indicate-- You can do some things to try to figure it out, like mark it down and say, “Oh, look. I do feel bleh every 28 days.” That probably is something with a cycle going on in my body. 

Melanie Avalon: You could also do temperature tracking. So, Oura. Well, I've had them on the show twice, but I'm interviewing one of the researchers that they work with this week and her focus is ultradian and infradian rhythms. We're going to probably talk all about this like temperature tracking and the different rhythms in the body. So, I'm very excited. There's a lot of rhythms in the body, a lot of clocks. There's a lot of clocks.  

Gin Stephens: There are so many which is why it always, I don't know, it bothers me. I don't know if that's the right word to use. It's amusing to me to consider that the thought that we would all be "exactly the same." When it comes to that there's so many moving parts and I don't literally mean moving parts. I mean there are moving parts, but there’s so many things going on that we're all just going to be different. Not everyone has the exact same length menstrual cycle. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. Oh yeah, not even remotely.  

Gin Stephens: That's just one example of that we know. That some women are clockwork every 26 days or something, and that's their normal cycle, whereas other people are slightly longer. Really, when I was going through perimenopause, it just really showed me how powerful these hormones are because then you have no regularity for a period of time. After being regular, it's like now we have 10 days, now we have 32 days, now we have four days. It was crazy. [laughs] It just lets that our bodies just are doing what they're doing back there, and it really just depends on our hormones, and so many other factors. They're out of your control. 

Melanie Avalon: Or, they're influenced by what you're doing.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, they're totally influenced by so many things. But it's not something you're consciously-- the changes that my body has gone through over menopause, they happened. No matter what I do, I have had changes. You're going to have changes, then you have to respond to those changes. I was reading something this past week. Someone was talking about having trouble losing weight, and of course, I asked her age, and she was someone probably 10 years ahead of me as far as deep into menopause, and I was doing some reading. We really need less fuel as we age. We need less fuel.  

Melanie Avalon: But more protein.  

Gin Stephens: Yes, but more protein. That was in what I was reading. But that's something to keep in mind, for anybody who's getting older, we don't need to eat as much food. So, let's say you're someone that-- of course, neither of us recommends counting calories. But let's say, you're somebody who has been counting your calories for decades exactly how much you're eating, and now all of a sudden, you're eating the exact same number of calories, and you're slowly gaining weight. Is there something wrong with you? No. That's just it's normal for our bodies to need less energy, less fuel as we age. So, if you're postmenopausal and you find your weight is slowly creeping up, even though your eating habits have not changed, my point is that they might need to change. You may need to eat less food. Boy, that's annoying to hear and understand. I don't want to hear that. I don't want to hear that now that I'm 52, maybe I need to eat less food. That's no fun. I want to eat more food. Not less food.  

Melanie Avalon: Thankfully though, with intermittent fasting, one of the things I love about it is with the shorter eating window, you get to eat more satisfying. Even if it's less food, it doesn't feel as much less food, because you could eat more of it once. 

Gin Stephens: It's easier to eat less food in an eating window than throughout the whole day, absolutely. But I just want to encourage people that may be in the same stage as me or are older than me to understand that, “Oh gosh, well, this is just a fact of life that maybe I'm going to have to eat a little bit less food as I get older than I could eat when I was in my 40s” for example. And it's okay. I'm not going to be mad at my body for changing in the way that bodies change.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, the next question is from Julie. The subject is "Sleep, sex drive, and sweats."  

Gin Stephens: Can I just say one thing before we even read it? Before we even read what Julie has to say? That subject line, sleep, sex drive and sweats is perimenopause in a subject line. That's all I'm going to say. So, let's just hear what Julie has to say, but that really flows nicely with what we were just talking about.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, Julie says, “Greetings, Gin and Melanie. My name is Julie. I'm a 51-year-old high school special education teacher in Michigan. I'm 5’4". I'm pretty active. I walk four miles, five to six days per week and bike 14 miles at a good pace once a week during our non-snow months. I'll do some light lifting but I'm inconsistent. I'm definitely going through perimenopause and was approaching my one year with no cycle, then bam. I had a weak cycle in May 2021.” 

Gin Stephens: Then, you have to start over again. For people who don't know yet because you're not quite at that stage of your life, you've got to start the clock over again. I remember being exactly where you are, Julie, with that and like being mad, because I was so excited that time was progressing and then, bam, cycle. You have to start over and then you have to wait a year before, anyway. I just had to throw that in there. 

Melanie Avalon: That's really frustrating.  

Gin Stephens: It is what it is.  

Melanie Avalon: I keep mentioning Stephanie Estima, but she talks about that a lot in her book. She talks about the vagueness surrounding defining perimenopause and menopause. That is basically just this counting game and that it's very vague. In any case, Julie says, “Cheers to me. The yearlong count starts again. Insert eyeroll, angry face emoji here. My questions are coming. I stumbled across IF and your podcast last summer 2020 when I was trying to drop a few pounds before my son's wedding. I have done the traditional diets in the past such as Weight Watchers, counting calories, low fat, etc. I have learned lessons each time I would “diet” throughout my adult years and I've implemented those lessons changes with my daily lifestyle.  

I used to drink three cans of diet caffeine free pot per day, I used to eat way more carbs, I used to put cream and sweetener in my coffee, I used to eat three to four meals per day, I used to be on three kinds of medication, and now I'm only taking vitamins. This has been a huge win for me.” That sounds familiar, sounds like one of our earlier questions. She says, “Prior to IF, I fluctuated between 148 to 158 for 20 years. I feel mentally best when I'm under 150. When I started IF in summer 2020, I was at 156 pounds and my goal was to get to 148. However, I found myself dropping to 142 and I was thrilled with the quick results. Not to mention, I just felt great. My current weight has been ranging between 143 to 145," and she has a goal of 138 to 142. "Since summer of 2020 until summer 2021, I have never ever not done an IF day less than 16:8. It truly is the easiest lifestyle to obtain. 

However, things have changed since I started. In fact, within weeks of starting I do not sleep as well. I used to sleep solidly for eight hours. I taught centered all night and every night. Is this my IF lifestyle or my perimenopause? I find myself overheating and having night sweats. After I open my window about two hours later, and they continue throughout my sleeping hours. Thoughts? What can I change? Change my eating window, what I'm eating, or, is this all part of my change? Not to mention, my sex drive has gone down. Ugh. I've been married for 30 years, and this has never been an issue for me, and started soon after I started the IF lifestyle. Please help.” All right, do you have help, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: I do, and here's something interesting to know. When I started intermittent fasting, the time that stuck in 2014 and never quit again, I've been doing it now since 2014, I was at that point-- In the year before I started intermittent fasting, I had trouble with uterine fibroids, which I think I've talked about before. I had surgery for that. I wasn't like this perfect healthy, hormonal, everything was perfect, and then it wasn't kind of person. I had issues before intermittent fasting with fibroids. But after I started intermittent fasting, that all got better. The whole fibroid thing after the surgery and I was taking serrapeptase, and I no longer had that struggle with the heavy flow and the bleeding. Sorry, guys, but you're just going to have to hear this. But it was really, really hard before I had the surgery. But then everything was better.  

Then, I had a few years that I would call perimenopause, where my cycles became irregular, but that was it. It was just irregularity. They would be short, they'd be long, it was all over the place, it was wacky. But then, as it continued, all of a sudden, Julie, those things and it was right around when it started to get really, really longer, like how you said you almost made it a year, and then bam. That was when everything got to the point where you just described. I stopped sleeping well, I started overheating, I started feeling sweaty after opening my window even more throughout my sleeping hours, the loss of libido, check, check, check. For me, I had enough years where I wasn't doing that, so I am pretty sure the cause effect was not intermittent fasting and then these symptoms. I actually sailed through perimenopause and felt great. It was right when I got to that point-- I think of it like this. 

When I interviewed Dr. Jones for the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast, he works with women over the transition, and he really opened my eyes and helped me understand what was happening. As our bodies start to decrease estrogen, progesterone, that's when we start having these symptoms. I was like, “Okay," So, it's really textbook. Take the intermittent fasting out of the picture completely, this is the way women feel during this transition. So, I didn't feel like that. Then, I had like you're saying the long period of time where I didn't have a cycle and then I had another one, and then had to start the clock again but it was during that second part of it before when I was going through my last full year when all those symptoms that you just described happened. 

I would really encourage you to listen, if you want to really understand it, Sheri and I enough for The Life Lessons Podcast, we did two episodes with Dr. Anna Cabeca. She's an OB-GYN, and she's known as the girlfriend doctor, because she really is like talking to a girlfriend. She's fabulous. It's episode 25 and episode 26. For episode 25, we talked about demystifying menopause. We talked about what your body's going through pre, during the transition, and then post. Then we had episode 26, which was sexual health and libido. Again, just like you, when you said that you've been married for 30 years, this has never been an issue for you, I could write this entire everything exactly like you. I could have written that. Never was an issue, boom, it was an issue. It is shocking and surprising when it suddenly is. But the best part about talking to Dr. Cabeca is that once we understand this is normal, this is what women go through as our hormones decrease and change, and there are also some things you can do to help with some of these symptoms, and Dr. Cabeca has got some solutions for you. So, definitely look for The Life Lessons Podcast, if you go to any podcast app and search Gin Stephens, you can find it. Sheri is the cohost, and look for episode 25, and then episode 26.  

We got a lot of feedback on those two episodes. People really enjoyed listening to Dr. Cabeca. She's just fantastic. She's actually going to come on the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast because she's also an intermittent faster. But I can confidently say that we go through this as women, whether we're intermittent fasters or not, and I really still to this day think that intermittent fasting helped me go through it easier than what I've heard from other people, what they've gone through. Does that mean it was painless? No. [laughs] It's weird. It's so weird when you're like, “wow, what is happening?”  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, well, I knew Gin that you would have the answer for that. That was perfect.  

Gin Stephens: Her subject line is really the menopausal transition in three words. Well, it's well, one, two, three words, five words, but sleep, sex drive, and sweats. There it is. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Something Julie might want to look into that might help, I'm not a doctor. I'm not prescribing. I'm currently reading a book by Michael Platt, and it's called Adrenaline Dominance. He actually has another book as well that I'm going to read called The Miracle of Bio-identical Hormones. His theory is that a lot of the issues that we experienced, not even things we perceive as hormonal, but a lot of health issues in general, are related to adrenaline dominance, and he believes that progesterone is often the hormone that can really mitigate that and balance hormones, and a lot of people seem to benefit from progesterone.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Dr. Jones that I talked to explain how when he gets women on the right dose of progesterone, that it just changes their lives. They're sleeping better, and Dr. Cabeca talked about the same thing. That's definitely want to work with a professional that's going to help you find the right dose for your body. That's important. You don't want to just be guessing. 

Melanie Avalon: 100%. He had a list of things to keep in mind when using progesterone cream, specifically. The first thing was what you just said, Gin. He says, “There's no one size fits all dosage. The patient begins with a generally recommended dosage and then adapts to the amount and frequency of application and even application site as needed.” He says-- I love this, he says, “When it comes to dosing progesterone, it's better to treat the patient rather than the lab test.” That is adjust the dosage according to the patient's response rather than the blood test results. 

Gin Stephens: I think that's huge, too. I've heard that about thyroid medication as well. That's how they used to do it before labs. 

Melanie Avalon: Kind of goes into what we were saying that at the beginning of this show, you were talking about how it's hard to test these things anyway. It's hard to even know and I think when it comes to supplementing with hormones, bioidentical hormones, progesterone cream, going off how you feel is really-- That sounds really vague, but working with a practitioner and basing it on your symptoms and how you feel rather than necessarily what the lab tests might show.  

Gin Stephens: The levels. Yeah, 100%.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. He says it's best applied to areas with a good blood supply where the skin is thin. That's the inner forearm, the upper chest, the back of the neck, at a face. He says it appears to be extremely safe with few potential side effects. This is interesting. He says progesterone has a short half-life in the bloodstream about five to six minutes because of its propensity to attach readily to receptor sites. He says saliva tests do not give an accurate picture of progesterone levels, except maybe if you're using just a cream. Then, he thinks you should avoid oral progesterone. But in any case, that might be something to look into, finding a practitioner who works with hormones. 

Gin Stephens: That's what I would recommend 100% and trying to get what's right for you until your symptoms are better. But again, it does get better to the degree that now that I'm on the other side, I am sleeping better now. I was having more trouble sleeping than I am now, but my sleep has gotten better. It's still not the sleep that I had before, I'm going to just say. It's like I don't need as much sleep. My mother was just here. I hadn't seen her in a while. She lives in Virginia. But of course, couldn't travel during the pandemic, but I just spent some time with her, and she was talking about what she does. She wakes up so early, like crazy early, like 4:30. That's when she wakes up. So, I was like, “Okay, we've got the same rhythm.” I bet. I'm not waking up at 4:30 but she goes to bed really early wakes up really early. Really early. 

Melanie Avalon: I was telling you, Gin. I literally went to bed at 5 AM last night. I'm dying. My Oura Ring, I got the worst score I've ever received on my Oura Ring ever. It was a 51. I was like, "It knows, it knows." When it's that bad, it suggests a recovery day. I didn't do it. But I think basically, if you put it in that mode, it won't penalize you for not-- I think what it does is, it doesn't penalize you for doing activity. It'll change your activity goals and stuff, because it knows that you're resting. I think that's what it does. But in any case, did we answer Julie's stuff? I think so. 

Gin Stephens: I think so, yeah. I'm sending positive thoughts your way, Julie, because I get it. Again, you're just like, “What's happening to me?” Because you can hear all about it, but I was like, “Yeah, but that's not going to happen to me." Okay. No, it will. It's going to all the young people including you, Melanie. Just wait. 

Melanie Avalon: I honestly feel, especially, when I had the mercury toxicity, I think it did a number on my hormones. I feel I experienced a lot of the hormonal type effects that I'll probably experience. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yes. You've already been down that road.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Because I do hear stories, especially, in books I read of people who don't have symptoms in perimenopause and menopause. That's what I'm hoping for but we'll see. 

Gin Stephens: I think I went through it pretty well. In general, it wasn't debilitating. But everyone's heard me talk about struggling with my sleep, and that was when wine started to be more of a problem for me. If I wanted to get a good night's sleep, I had to not do a lot of drinking. 

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Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Sarah, and her subject is "So discouraged." Sarah said, “Hey, gals. Longtime lover of y'all, and the podcast, and all your things. Hope you can talk me off this ledge and troubleshoot. I'll try to be brief. I've been doing it for maybe four years off and on, not while pregnant, etc. But most recently, I've been 19:5 most days since about March. I eat what I like, but thanks to appetite correction, it's whole real foods about 98% of the time. I fast on weekends too. I open my window early if my body tells me to. I do drink a glass or two of wine because it's literally the thing I look forward to at the end of the day when the kids go to bed. I'm home by myself with three kids. Husband is an ICU travel nurse who works out of town. Thanks, COVID. Other stats: 45 years old, 5’5", current weight 187, goal 145. Medications taken for anxiety, depression, allergies, and high blood pressure. I do kettlebells for 30 minutes three to four times a week and cardio, which is dancing two to three times a week. I have seven-year-old twins and a two-year-old. 

Here's the ledge. I weighed myself this morning because I've joined a work weight loss program and that's part of the program, to weigh yourself. You work with a health coach, etc. I still weigh over what I want to weigh. I hate looking at my body in the mirror. I have that post C-section apron, and I'm 45, cellulite comes with the territory, right? I don't take progress pics because I can't bear looking at myself and my clothes aren't fitting any differently. I've had my hormones and other levels checked and everything except my vitamin D was fine, I'm supplementing. I'm crying while I'm typing this. I'm so discouraged. I was hoping to drop some weight and nothing is moving. I'm so disgusted with my body. I'm ready to go by all devices, and try all the quack junk, or just give up and be fat. Thanks for all you do,” Sarah. And Sarah, I hear your discouragement through this whole thing. I want to give you a big hug. First of all, I'm giving you a big hug. Imagine the hug right this minute. A hug, big hug. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm so I'm so, so sorry to hear this. It's a very emotional email, and I feel we don't get quite as many emails that are this intense but I know it's something that I think a lot of people experience. So, I applaud Sarah for writing us about it, because she talks about wanting to go get devices and try all the things. Sarah, I feel like you're looking for the solution, this is going to sound cheesy, but outside of yourself, and what if maybe the solution isn't outside of yourself? I think there's a lot that you could benefit from the mental work here and your perspective of everything that you're experiencing. I had a really good episode with Amy Johnson, who wrote The Little Book of Big Change. That episode was really amazing for reframing everything that you're experiencing, and then I just recorded with her again, and I think it might be out by the time this comes out. So, that episode is going to be coming out October 1st. So, it'll be coming out a little bit after this airs, but we'll go ahead and put a link in the show notes to it, and it's for her new book called Just a Thought. I think listening to those, you might find very, very helpful. I have a lot of thoughts. Gin, do you want to start, though? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I have some thoughts as well, and I'm going to pinpoint two things that might be getting in the way of your weight loss, and one of them is your allergy medication. Antihistamines can cause weight gain. If you're taking an antihistamine every single day, that could be just something to look at and think about. I'm going to say the one thing that Sarah does not want me to say, do what I'm going to say, Melanie?  

Melanie Avalon: I think you're going to say the wine.  

Gin Stephens: I'm going to say the wine because I'm going to talk about my own body. For me, that's a huge, huge, huge difference. It sounds like you're drinking a glass or two of wine every day when the kids go to bed, and if you say that is the only thing you're looking forward to, I would find something else to look forward to. Something else some other self-care ritual because I get how hard it is when your kids are a little, boy, do I get it. Seven-year-old twins and a two-year-old, it is intense. But for me, when I was losing weight 2014 to 2015, I stopped drinking and you've already got the right diet with real whole foods 98% of the time. Your eating window is in check. But I stopped the wine and no drinking, I did it for about 10 weeks. Boom, accelerated my weight loss like crazy. Like crazy. Just from all the data that I had for all the time that I was losing weight and still weighing myself, there was a huge correlation with alcohol and what my weight did. So, I would experiment with that.  

You may want to read the book, This Naked Mind, by Annie Grace. It's a powerful book. It really helped me think about my own relationship with alcohol, and I'm not saying you have a problem with alcohol at all, but I was drinking a glass or two of wine every single day as well. Stopping that has made such a positive difference in how I feel. Annie Grace does a better job explaining it than me. She's the expert when it comes to this topic, but give that book a try and read it with an open mind. She doesn't tell you how to stop drinking, but she wants you to examine your own statements and thoughts around it. The way it came through here is that, you wrote literally in capital letters showing me you have really strong emotions. You do not want to give up this wine. So, think about why you don't, and you may find that is the secret sauce that makes a huge difference, the giving it up. Give it a try and see. That would be my advice. 

Melanie Avalon: It's so interesting, and just goes back to how individual we all are, because for me, wine has no effect on weight gain for me. If anything, I feel I probably maintain a lower weight when I'm drinking wine, which is really interesting. If I had to focus on one thing-- Well, first of all, I love everything that Gin drew attention to with the emotional aspects surrounding the wine, because I think wine is such a wonderful thing for a lot of people. 

Gin Stephens: I love wine. 

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] Yeah, I think people can look forward to it, and it can have a very healthy place in people's lives emotionally. But when it becomes the thing that you're looking forward to for relief, I just get a little bit nervous about its role in your emotional health surrounding it. I would want it to be an additive and something that enhances your life without feeling like you have to have it.  

If I were to focus on one thing to jumps-- what I will say. I know this is ironic, because Gin just suggested not drinking wine but I do want to say, if you do drink wine and you are going to continue drinking wine every night, I would definitely, definitely, definitely drink Dry Farm Wines. I feel so strongly about this. It's going to be lower alcohol, lower sugar, organic, free of toxins, and compared to conventional wines, I think you might experience a massive difference if you're experiencing any negative effects from the wine, and you can get a bottle for a penny at dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast.  

That said, if I were to focus on something to jumpstart the weight loss, I would focus on the eating what you like, and maybe try eating what you like within a macro paradigm if you haven't done that already. I know you're eating whole foods, but I don't know what those are, your body might respond really well to either low carb, high fat. It doesn't have to be high fat, but either a low carb or a high carb-low fat approach. I think there's really a magic that can be experienced in following one of those macros strictly. People experience weight loss doing that without fasting. So, when coupled with fasting, it can often really, really help. Focusing on protein as the foundation of your meal, I think, is really great for providing satiety, providing calories that are not going to turn into fat, they're going to be used to build and support your body. They're going to encourage, support your metabolism, and then also let you more likely be in a calorie deficit while being thoroughly nourished. So, having protein as your main thing and then trying either the low carb or the low-fat approach. 

I think if you haven't done that, I think you might see a massive change. If you haven't tried that yet at all, there's actually a lot of potential. Like a lot of potential. So, I'm actually very, very excited for you. And the great thing is, if you haven't tried it, that's two options you can try. I would give-- if one doesn't work, you can try the other. If you do try one though, I would give it a substantial amount of time to see if it's working for you. 

Gin Stephens: Really, as far as the wine goes, you can have something else in a class that feels festive. I love to have coconut water in a wine glass. I have that very frequently during my window. I found I just wanted to drink something that wasn't water, black coffee, plain tea out of a pretty wineglass. 

Melanie Avalon: See, that's so interesting, because it's just goes to show how different we are. If I were to replace wine with coconut water, I would probably gain weight for sure. 

Gin Stephens: Really? Coconut water doesn't-- Yeah, I love coconut water.  

Melanie Avalon: It's pretty sugary, right?  

Gin Stephens: It's not. I don't think so. No, it's not.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I thought it was. For me, wine has a really nice effect, especially, wearing a CGM, has a really nice effect on my blood sugar. But in any case, the biggest thing here, Sarah, is I just want to encourage you that you're not destined to be stuck in the state. The state isn't even something-- This is going to sound silly, but it's not even a problem. What I mean by that is, everything that you're experiencing is just your experience at this moment, and things change, they always change. It's literally impossible for things not to change. So, there's nothing to be scared about as far as thinking that you're going to be here forever. Things do change. They will change. You can try things, you can make choices and things can move in a different direction, and everything that you're experiencing, it's okay. It's okay. I really think that you can see some changes if you look at the food. Anything else for her? 

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it. We're rooting for you, Sarah. Get back with us if you try some things and see what your sweet spot is. 

Melanie Avalon: I feel like a broken record, because I suggest all of this stuff so often, but it's just because I really think it can be effective. If you really want to supercharge, if you want to try the low carb route, I would not embrace the idea of all the fat. You don't have to eat a lot of fat to enter ketosis. You just have to go low carb. So, if you have the weight to lose and you want to try low carb, I would go low carb. I would not focus on adding lots of fat. If you do add fat, I would add something like MCT oil, specifically C8 only. I can put a link in the show notes to the one that I like. That is a fat that you could add that is very stimulating of metabolism in your eating window, not in your fast, is very unlikely to actually be stored as fat and it can actually help you lose fat, if you try the low carb approach. I'm really curious what she's saying about the quack junk when she's talking about trying. 

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't think he's talking about anything we talked about but the stuff that you see all over the place like the weight loss fads. Not anything we're promoting. You don't need any of those quack things that are out there. You definitely don't. I really don't think there's anything you can buy. Even the things we like that can have positive benefits on your health are not necessary for weight loss. 

Melanie Avalon: Actually, I know this is controversial. I do think there are certain-- things that are marketed as weight loss pills, I think there are certain compounds out there that if you took them in a fasted state would catalyze fat burning, but I just think they're so misconstrued and how weight loss pills work, most of them have lots of crappy ingredients, and additives, and safety issues. There's not really a practical, realistic way of implementing this. I do think scientifically, certain compounds can help support fat burning. But there's nothing I can actually like straight up suggest. In any case, anything else?  

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's all.  

Melanie Avalon: One other thing. If Sarah doesn't feel comfortable taking pictures of herself, I think that's totally fine. I just wouldn't stress about that. 

Gin Stephens: You definitely want to do what feels right to you. I'm not going to say everyone must take photos.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I was wondering if you've got questions about that before.  

Gin Stephens: Well, the reason I would encourage you to take photos even though you don't want to look at them right now is because one day, you're going to be glad you have them. That's the only thing. Right now, maybe you don't like taking them and you don't like looking at them, but one day, you'll be like, “Oh, my gosh, I'm so glad I have these photos.” You can save them in the hidden roll in your camera, you can google how to do that, so you don't have to look at them when you're scrolling along. You can hide in that hidden folder, and then just go to them, “I have some photos of me in that hidden folder,” and it's not photos I share with people or what I share with people, but you can really see how your body is changing. Especially with the kettlebells that she's doing and the cardio-- I think I talked about this last week. She says her clothes aren't fitting any differently, but with the way clothes are right now, you can change a lot, and your clothes, you can't tell it in your clothes by the way they're fitting, but you wouldn't be able to tell it in a photo. I'm not going to say you absolutely must take photos, but I would encourage you to get past that and think of it as, "I'm going to really be able to tell a difference when I look again in a month and wear the same clothes," and you will probably be pleasantly surprised.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I like that. Sorry, I just realized one thing I totally missed. Huge. This is huge. The medications for the anxiety and the depression. Those could be playing a major, major, major role. 

Gin Stephens: I only mentioned the allergy medication but you're right. Huge. 

Melanie Avalon: I don't know what you're taking specifically. If it's an SSRI or something, there's a lot of clinical literature on weight gain on those medications. And also, what's really interesting is a lot of the studies find a long-term effect. People will go on these medications, gain weight, go off the medications and the effects seem to last. They don't know why that is, but it seems to for a lot of people change something. Like in the hypothalamus, your metabolism something. That could be playing a factor. I don't say that to discourage you, I say it to know that if you feel your efforts aren't working, to keep in mind-- it's kind of like what we're talking about the beginning. It's not necessarily all you. The hormones, and the things in your body are very intense driving factors. But it's encouraging because you can set up an environment knowing that will work in your favor. 

Gin Stephens: Just feeling like you're not having to take the blame, that's the thing. I can remember all those years when I was struggling with obesity, and feeling like I must be weak, there's something wrong with me, why can't I do this, this must be my fault. Because we're conditioned to feel that way. Well, if you just do x, y, z, why can't you just do x, y, z? So, you feel like there's something wrong with you, like morally wrong with you. When really, it might be something that's going on physically behind the scenes and it's not your conscious fault, and that can give you relief, instead of feeling it's a failing on your part. You just understand, “Okay, this is what my body's doing right now.” Of course, we would not encourage you to just go off medication for anxiety or depression. No, definitely not. That's not what we're saying at all, or even allergy medication, but to understand the link, and when you understand the link, you're like, “Well, now, that makes sense. Now, it makes sense that I can't lose the weight.” 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, we feel for you, Sarah. Let us know how it goes. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode228, and we will put links in the show notes to everything that we talked about there. There's a link I wanted to mention, because we talked about LMNT a few times throughout this episode, and you can get a free sampler pack completely free at drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. So, that's a really great offer. You can get all of the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuff. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com, and you can submit questions there. Lastly, you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast. I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens, and I think that is everything. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?  

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.  

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

Gin Stephens: All right, talk to you then. Bye.  

Melanie Avalon: Bye.  

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

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Aug 22

Episode 227: CBD, Symptoms Of Fat Loss, Weight Loss Resistance, Constipation, High Fiber Diet, Cold & Flu, Food Fraud, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 227 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! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

11:25 - Listener Feedback: Samantha - Fun With Feals

13:00 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

17:55 - INSIDETRACKER: Go To insidetracker.com/melanie And Use The Coupon Code MELANIE30 For 30% Off All Tests Sitewide!

19:50 - Listener Q&A: Deena - Physical Symptoms of Fat Loss

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #104 - Sally Norton (Oxalates)

FOOD SENSE GUIDEGet Melanie's App To Tackle Your Food Sensitivities! Food Sense Includes A Searchable Catalogue Of 300+ Foods, Revealing Their Gluten, FODMAP, Lectin, Histamine, Amine, Glutamate, Oxalate, Salicylate, Sulfite, And Thiol Status. Food Sense Also Includes Compound Overviews, Reactions To Look For, Lists Of Foods High And Low In Them, The Ability To Create Your Own Personal Lists, And More!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #75 - Joel Greene (Part 1)

32:45 - Listener Q&A: Juliana - Not Losing weight

Stopping or reducing dietary fiber intake reduces constipation and its associated symptoms

45:15 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go Tdrinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!!

48:00 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - When you have a cold

Mercury Madness: Exposure Sources, Safe Fish Consumption, Chelation, EDTA/DMPS/DMSA, Detox, Amalgams, The Cutler Protocol, Glutathione, And More!

The Science, Nutrition, And Health Implications Of Conventional Vs. Sustainable, Grass-fed, Pastured, And Wild Meat And Seafood, Featuring My Honest Butcher Box Review!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 227 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing your when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting.
For more on us, check out ifpodcast.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. 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 in to protect you. Once they're in that fat, they then change 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.
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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're truly safe and supportive of your health. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. 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 melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. 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 227 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 really excited because I went for a swim in our new pool today. An actual swim.
Melanie Avalon: The pool?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's not fully finished still. They're waiting on-- you know how everything is all backordered? There's apparently some kind of control panel that's going to run everything. But the pump is working. It's clean. The pool is clean and sparkly.
Melanie Avalon: Is it a tropical oasis?

Gin Stephens: It is fantastic. We got the wrong color. We ordered a fiberglass pool because a friend of mine has one--
Melanie Avalon: Wait, what is a fiberglass pool?

Gin Stephens: It's the coating of the pool. Traditional pools are gunite or plastered, and those coatings are really hard to maintain over time, and they have to be redone a lot.
Our old pools from the 80s, it had just gotten-- It was cracked, it was needing to be completely redone. It was a mess. It was harboring algae. Apparently, it gets caught in the crevices of the plaster. But fiberglass is one piece. They build it and they bring it to you. They bring it on a truck. [laughs] It's molded and it's really slick. The coating is guaranteed to last for, I don't know, a long time. So, we actually got the wrong color.
They sent the wrong one. I'm like, “That's not the one we ordered.” But it was such a happy mistake. Because I love the color we got. It's a beautiful color.
Melanie Avalon: What color?

Gin Stephens: Well, it looks like just the perfect tropical blue. It's just perfect. The one I had originally ordered was going to be a darker blue, and I'm glad that didn't come.
Melanie Avalon: I remember when we were putting in our pool growing up, and the color is such a question like, “Do you get the aqua, do you get the--?” Ours was a really, really dark, dark blue.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I don't want it to be dark-dark. Our last one was a dark grey. Dark- dark. So, the water looked almost greenish. It was really dark. The color of the plaster doesn't reflect the color that the pool is going-- It determines how the color of the water is going to be, but it isn't the same if that makes sense. Our pool shell is a light, light

gray, but the water turns out to be this beautiful blue.

Melanie Avalon: Can you send me a picture?

Gin Stephens: Sure, I absolutely can. It's a tiny little pool. We're going to get-- originally, I was like, “I don't want a giant pool,” because that poll was so hard to keep the big one that we took out. It was crazy, and deep, and full of algae, and hard to work with. So, I was like, “I don't want a big pool.” Maybe, we'll just get a hot tub, like a giant hot tub, built-in hot tub. Then, as we started looking into that and I'm like, “Well, a small pool would be a similar kind of idea.” So, we're going to be able to heat it even in the winter because it's little. Oh, what I was going to tell you is the water is so warm, because it's little. [laughs] It's still cooler than my body. It's been like 100 degrees here, and the air is really hot, and the water is still cooler than body temperature. So, it feels good to me. I like a warm pool, like I said.
Melanie Avalon: Have you ever had the recurring nightmare that I have about the pools?
Gin Stephens: I don't know. What is your-- I don't know what it is.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like I might have told you it before.

Gin Stephens: I don't remember.

Melanie Avalon: One of my recurring nightmares, it's because it's from watching Free Willy growing up. I always dream that we have a whale stuck in our pool.
Gin Stephens: I feel like I have not heard that one. [laughs] I don't think--

Melanie Avalon: It's a sad dream.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that would be sad, to have a whale trapped in your pool.

Melanie Avalon: Because you know Free Willy.

Gin Stephens: He needed to be free.

Melanie Avalon: He's stuck in the pool, and when he's trying to call to his family.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] Well, I don't have that one, no. There's never anything in my pool in my dream. Just me. I don't really dream about it, but it's just exciting to finally be able to get in it. Then, also the problem is, I can't get in it during the week because we still have these workmen all the time in the backyard [laughs] working on the screen porch forever. We're getting there though. I think the screen will be going in soon. I have a feeling. Got to be getting there.

Melanie Avalon: Are you posting pictures on Instagram?

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: Okay.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] I don't know. Maybe, I could. We'll see. I posted some at the very beginning of the demo. It's still just has so far to come. We finally we've ordered some furniture, and that's going to be like eight weeks. Everything is going to be forever. This is going to be another yearlong project just like the bathroom. That's just how long it takes to get things right now to get them in.
Melanie Avalon: Have you heard about the glass shortage?

Gin Stephens: What? No, we have a paint sample shortage though. Did you know that? You can't get a paint sample. We went to Lowe's to get a paint sample. They're like, “Sorry. No, we don't--.” We're like, “What?” No paint samples.
Melanie Avalon: Because I'm developing my supplement right now, and it's really important to me that it's in glass bottles. Apparently, there's a glass shortage. I think at first it was just the supplement industry, but now it's everything.
Gin Stephens: Nothing would surprise me.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the guy who created it with sent me this link. He's like, “You better stock up on wine and water,” because there's this article about the stores running out of wine because of the class shortage or alcohol. But we secured 5000 glass bottles. So, my supplement will be in glass.
Gin Stephens: Yay.

Melanie Avalon: Which speaking of, can I make an announcement?

Gin Stephens: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: So, friends, I haven't actually signed the contract yet. We're final-final stages. We had a call yesterday. Now, I just have to get my lawyer to look it over one more time, and then, it should be good to go. So, not quite signed, but will be very soon. If you go to melanieavalon.com/ serrapeptase, that's just a landing page to get on an email list, and I'm going to be sending emails about like the pre-order special that I'm going to do, and all of the information about the supplements. For those who are not familiar, serrapeptase is a supplement that-- well, Gin doesn't take it anymore, but I've taken for a long time, and Gin has taken before, and it's created by the Japanese silkworm. You take it in the fasted state, it goes into your bloodstream, it breaks down residual old building up and buildups of proteins, and so, it can address anything that is basically happening from your immune system reacting to protein buildups or just protein

buildups in general. That's things like allergies, inflammation, fibroids, brain fog. There are just so many things that it can address, and I'm obsessed with it and listeners are obsessed, and I'm finally developing my own, which is exciting. I've never created a physical product before besides-- well, like a book, but I'm excited. Very, very exciting.
Gin Stephens: I can't wait to hear how it goes.

Melanie Avalon: Me too. [laughs] It'll probably come out, and-- Oh, I just learned a fun fact. Well, this is not a fun fact. This is a known fact, but I hadn't really thought about it. Do you when fall is?
Gin Stephens: Like December 20th?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Isn't that weird to think about?

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: Most people don't think about fall.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] Sorry. I said no. No, I was an elementary teacher, okay?

Melanie Avalon: I know. But think about it. Like, you don't think of fall being December. You think of that as winter?
Gin Stephens: Well, I guess it's wintery, but November is still fall.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, even November feels like winter. I was thinking about this, because for the landing page, I was debating whether to put fall or winter 2021.
Gin Stephens: When's it going to be again? Melanie Avalon: It'll probably be December. Gin Stephens: Well, that'll be winter.
Melanie Avalon: The borderline. Well, no, no, because December 21st is still fall. Gin Stephens: Well, technically it is. But I think if it's going to be early December. Melanie Avalon: Like culturally, you consider it winter?
Gin Stephens: Yeah. I think so.

Melanie Avalon: In any case, anything else, or shall we jump into everything?

Gin Stephens: Let's jump in.

Melanie Avalon: All right. To start things off, we got a pretty fun question, or an idea

from Samantha, and the subject is "Fun with Feals." Samantha says, “Hello. I'm glad things are going so great with you guys. Things are fantastic in our IF household.
Listening to your latest podcast, I have a thought and a fun idea. The next time Feals sponsors a podcast, you guys should indulge beforehand. I’d be curious to see how it may change your demeanor or interaction. It might be fun. Don't tell us until the end. Ha- ha. Thanks. And cheers to you both, Sam." We got this question quite a while ago. I obviously saved it until Feals was sponsoring one of our episodes, which is today's episode. This was actually a great question because it helps us dismantle some of the myths surrounding CBD. Because basically, it wouldn't have been any different probably if Gin and I had taken Feals before, and I actually take Feals every single day. So, there's not really any difference there for me.

Gin Stephens: Well, I was just going to add. I can't take Feals during my fast because it makes me starving. I've tried but I just can't take it during the fast. So, anytime I would try it, instantly starving. It's something that has to stay in my eating window. So, I wouldn't be able to record a podcast because I'd be having to eat and I'd be lethargic from the eating. Not lethargic, but what I mean. Not as perky. So, I don't like to eat before the podcast.
Melanie Avalon: What is so interesting about that, and this is actually really great to discuss, Feals is-- let me define what it is before we say any more. Basically, it is premium CBD oil, and it is the one brand I was waiting until the brand came along that fit all of my criteria for CBD. So, that is that it is full spectrum, organic, tested. It's made with an MCT carrier only. What's really, really cool, and I hadn't done this, even though I've been using Feals now for a long time, but there's a barcode at the bottom of every single bottle, and you can scan it with your phone, and it will pull up the CoA. It will show that the testing and the certification, which is just really, really cool. Basically, what CBD is a cannabinoid found in a plant and when we take it, it affects our cannabinoid system. Our cannabinoid system is like our master regulator of stress and anxiety, and it affects pain, and sleep, and so many things. By modulating those receptors with CBD, it can actually help your body regulate that system. So, it's not addictive. It doesn't down regulate anything. It actually often creates something called reverse tolerance, which means that you might need more in the beginning, but the longer you take it, the less you might actually need. But people use it for all different things.
I think what's really important and really actually nice is Gin and I have had different experiences with it, and that just goes to show that people are really unique. So, it may or may not work for you. If it does, it can be a game changer like it is for me, but even then, it's really important to find your right dose. I personally take it for anxiety and sleep mostly, and it took me a while to find my right dose because if I took too much, it would just completely zing me out and make me a little bit tired throughout the day. So, I really had to find that dose that worked for me where I take it at night. It's interesting, Gin was saying that, it makes her hungry because for me by the time my eating window rolls around, I'm usually hungry, and then I take some of my Feals because that's when I like

to take it for my sleep cycle, and it actually makes me-- It gets rid of that little hunger that did creep up. So, it has the opposite effect on me for hunger. That was like a long tangent. What were you saying about it? Just that people react differently?
Gin Stephens: Yeah, and she wanted us to indulge ahead. I want to talk real quick about something that you said about, it's important to find your right dose. They have a fabulous customer service that will absolutely walk you through. They'll send you a journal you can use, like a PDF kind of thing, they'll send you. I think it's a PDF. But they have all the tools for you, and I spent time on the phone with the guy for 45 minutes.
Melanie Avalon: I did too.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, and they'll do that for you too, not just us. Not just because we're fancy, they'll do it for you, Samantha, [laughs] or anybody, and they'll have a follow-up call, and it's free. It's part of what they offer, because they know you're more likely to stick with it if it works for you. They know that there is a dose that's right for you.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm so glad you said that. I think it was Stefan that I talked to on the phone.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, me too.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. He actually convinced me to actually do the whole write down the dose you're taking every single day on a calendar, because I've been nonchalant about it. I was like, “Ah, I'll just experiment,” but I wasn't writing down the dose, and that actually was what proved to help me find what really works for me. The way they work is, it's shipped directly to your door. It's really amazing. So, to clarify, it does not affect your mental capacity in a way that makes it out of touch with reality.
Gin Stephens: We wouldn't sound any different as far as sounding wacky or anything. [laughs] I'm glad that Sam asked that, because, yeah, that is a big misconception.
Melanie Avalon: It is, yeah. And we have an incredible offer. This is actually one of my favorite offers of all of our brands. You can start feeling better with Feals and become a member today by going to feals.com/ifpodcast and you'll get 50% off your first order with free shipping. That's F-E-A-L-S dotcom slash if podcast, I-F-P-O-D-C-A-S-T, to become a member and get 50% automatically taken off your first order with free shipping. feals.com/ifpodcast. And a quick note about that, it is a membership, but you can cancel at any time. So, you don't have to worry about committing for life. If it doesn't work for you, you can just cancel, So, definitely use that link in that offer. It's an incredible deal.
Gin Stephens: It really is.

Melanie Avalon: We'll put all of that information as well in the show notes and the show notes will be at ifpodcast.com/episode227

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, this question comes from Dina. The subject is "Physical symptoms of fat loss," and Dina says, “Hello ladies. Thank you so much for your time and effort. I am trying to catch up on all of the episodes. I've just made it to Episode 103. I have heard it mentioned in previous episodes but not in depth. Are there physical sensations in the body when we are losing fat? Aches, pains, smells in the urine, sweat, or breath, or can you feel the fat layer? I believe another listener described it as beads or peas under the skin when pinched. I've experienced aches in my left upper abdomen, cloudy or tinted urine, and ketone taste in the mouth, which I think were physically symptoms of fat loss. I was just curious what other listeners have described as physical manifestations of fat loss. I've been IFing off and on for a year but consistently for six months. I had to take some time off in the fall after my husband's motorcycle accident.
I'm happy to report he is doing great. I even got him to start IF after recovery to help heal scar tissue and improve his inflammation. He was finally able to run up and downstairs which he hasn't done in 10 months. Yay. I'm so proud of him. I myself am down to 137 pounds from 145 pounds in January. I don't have much weight left to lose. Slow and

steady is my approach this time. Thank you so much for your podcast. You ladies are the Scorpio-Cancer power duo.” You’re Cancer, Gin?
Gin Stephens: No, I'm actually Leo. I'm on the first day of Leo. I'm right on the cusp. Melanie Avalon: I didn't think you were Cancer. I was like, "I don't think that's right." Gin Stephens: [laughs] I'm Leo and I am so much a Leo.
Melanie Avalon: I don't even know much about the science but you sound like a Leo.

Gin Stephens: I'm so much a Leo.

Melanie Avalon: When I think of a Leo, [giggles] I think of you.

Gin Stephens: It's true.

Melanie Avalon: I'm ridiculously a Scorpio.

Gin Stephens: My husband is a Scorpio. We've got a Scorpio-Leo marriage. My husband and I, Chad, and I do.
Melanie Avalon: Dina says, “My Scorpio husband is the soulmate to my Cancer heart. The horoscope to clarify. Love, love, love listening to you both. Thanks again for all of your hard work with love, Dina."
Gin Stephens: I don't know if Scorpio-Leo is supposed to be a soulmate match because [laughs] it might not be. I'm a lot for my Scorpio husband. [laughs] That's all I'm going to say about that. [laughs] Maybe I should have been born one day sooner, then I would have been a Cancer.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah. That's crazy, that you're right on the cusp.

Gin Stephens: I think that's the official name for it, cusp. All right, so, let's get to Dina's questions. Everybody's going to be different with what they experienced. I don't know about aches. Because I've never heard aches is like really something related to fat loss. I would be concerned about an ache inside your body that you're having all the time. I don't know about that. Left upper, I don't know what that could be. If you continue to have pain, check with your doctor about that. Your gallbladder is on the right, right?
Melanie Avalon: I was just thinking what is on your left upper?

Gin Stephens: Your stomach, your small intestine?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I just found the coolest picture ever. The left upper is your spleen, colon, left kidney, pancreas.

Gin Stephens: Is that where your spleen is?

Melanie Avalon: According to this picture.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: In the left lower is your descending colon and left kidney. So, yeah, you might want to check with the doctor.
Gin Stephens: Gallbladders is on the right. I didn't know where the spleen was. I couldn't have answered that for a million dollars. I would have thought the spleen was somewhere else.
Melanie Avalon: It's also in the center top. It's like the center top to the left.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, so, I wouldn't think that aches would be something to just let go or assume that it's normal. I would not assume that's normal. As far as what you're talking about that beans or peas under the skin, yes, I actually felt that. What is that? What's happening? I don't know. But that's something that you'll feel right under the skin. I'll feel it on my abdomen. It feels like you're rubbing a little something. I don't know what's happening, like I said, but yeah, people have reported it. Smells, yeah, you talked, Dina, about ketosis breath, you'll certainly have different odors in your breath based on that.
As far as things coming out in your sweat, your urine, that could also be related to if you're detoxing something. Yeah, because we know that toxins are stored in our fat cells. As you're releasing fat, whatever was in there stashed away, whenever you stored that fat, it's going to come out. If you were exposed to something weird during that time, your body packed it away, you might be smelling it as it's coming back out. I did notice when I was in deep ketosis that, my urine would have a certain kind of smell to it. That sounds lovely to say, right? [laughs] Let's talk about the way our urine smells. But anyway, it's just something-- I would do Atkins for example, back in the day. I would always try to do Atkins. There was a certain smell that always went along with that after a few days. So, TMI.

Melanie Avalon: It's funny. You say all this, I don't even think about it being TMI at all. But I'm just thinking about this stuff all the time. [laughs] But yes.
Gin Stephens: You'll learn what's normal for you. You'll say, “All right, I always feel this when I'm losing fat.” I actually also had itching. We've talked about this I think before. Of course, I lost a lot of weight. First 75 pounds, then to be about 80 over time, but in the areas where I felt like I was deflating the most quickly, that skin would be itchy in that area. I can remember my abdomen being so itchy. Think about a balloon that's been deflated, and now, it's kind of floppy looking. Your skin is deflating. I think that kind of change in your skin can cause itching just from the way your skin is kind of contracting.

Melanie Avalon: Interesting.

Gin Stephens: I certainly felt it.

Melanie Avalon: I have so many thoughts. I want to say really quickly. Dina, I don't want to scare you, but the kidney thing, something that could be-- or for just listeners in general, especially from weight loss, maybe it would be something like kidney stones? I actually just released last week that we're talking right now, a fascinating episode, fascinating on oxalates with Sally Norton, blew my mind. Oxalates. Do you know much about oxalates, Gin?
Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: They're a compound found in plants. They're really high in things like spinach. There's a whole list of them. They're also in my app, Food Sense Guide. If you get that, it has levels of them in different foods, and that's at melanieavalon.com/foodsinceguide. But basically, they're these compound and plants that they form-- They're a defense mechanism, and they form basically, they're sort of like crystal shards. Some plants are poisonous because their oxalate content is so high. But the plants that we eat, it's not high enough to outright kill us or anything like that but they mechanically damage us. They scrape up our insides, they can accumulate in the kidneys and form kidney stones, and they can accumulate over time, especially, if you're eating a lot of plants. After talking with Sally Norton, she makes a very convincing argument that they're connected to so, so many health conditions. They also chelate calcium, which can be an issue. If you're on a high oxalate diet, it's definitely something to consider. A lot of people actually experience oxalate dumping when they go on low carb or carnivore and cut out plants, and can experience symptoms from that. So, I just thought about that, because that episode came up, and it could be something going on with kidney stones in your kidneys.
But going back to the skin thing, I was thinking about this, and I have a theory about fat loss and the way it feels. It relates a little bit to what Gin was saying about the skin.
When I interviewed-- Oh, and by the way, I'll put a link in the show notes to the interview with Sally Norton, and I'll also put a link in the show notes to the interview with Joel Greene. He wrote The Immunity Code, and he's the one who talks about the ECM, the extracellular matrix of our fat cells. He's the one that makes the case that a fat cell has its ECM, which is the outer barrier, the membrane. When we lose weight, the fat cell needs to shrink, because it doesn't have as much fat inside anymore. That membrane, that ECM, it can't just shrink. The cell has to actually reform the ECM and make it smaller. It's like if you weigh a certain weight and you have clothes and then you lose weight, your clothes won't just shrink, you have to take them in or get new clothes. So, the fat cell often prefers to-- it's really energetically expensive to do that process. So, the body often prefers to just like fill up the fat cell instead. So, instead of readjusting the

ECM to a smaller size, just gaining the weight back.

The more and more you lose weight and regain weight, and lose weight and regain weight, every time you do that, it actually makes the ECM stiffer and stiffer, it makes the ECM harder and harder to modulate. So, that can be a major reason that with yo-yo dieting, it gets harder and harder to lose weight. So, my theory about all of this and how I think this might tie into physical symptoms of fat loss, which is the title of her question is that I know for me, when I first lost my weight with fasting and low carb, it was a very steady progressive weight loss and I hadn't done a lot of yo-yo dieting before that. I think my fat cells were-- the ECM wasn't as stiff and it was easier to lose the weight, and I also wasn't subjectively experiencing inflammation. I just lost the weight, and I didn't notice the pinchy stuff in my skin. I didn't feel my fat cells were filling up with water, which I know is one of the theories. I didn't experience any of that. I just consistently lost weight. I didn't feel anything weird on the way down.
Since, then, I gained back some weight, not a major amount, but I did gain back some weight, and then lost some weight. So, basically, just weight fluctuations, and what's really interesting is that second time around, I have experienced all of these things that listeners have talked about, like the beads and the peas and the water. I think a lot of it is-- I know, there's not like much research on this, but I really do think that the body, when it's making compensating actions to weight loss, it does like-- I really feel the cells fill up with water, or I feel something's going on that you can perceive.
The other thing I was going to say was fat loss, we actually lose it through our breath primarily. It's actually mostly lost through carbon dioxide. So, things that are coming out in your urine, that's probably going to be more what Gin said like toxins, and it's not really anything from your actual fat, because the fat actually just becomes energy and the byproducts get excreted as carbon dioxide. I agree with everything Gin said about the breath, and ketones, and all of that. That was a very long answer. Do you have thoughts, Gin?
Gin Stephens: Nope. I think we covered it.

Melanie Avalon: We're very happy, Dina, for your husband for recovering from his motorcycle accident. I remember when my sister-- I think I've said this before, but my sister got a motorcycle license, and then she bought a motorcycle and my parents just freaked out, and she sold it. So, they're dangerous. Have you ever driven on a motorcycle?
Gin Stephens: I've ridden on one. I've never driven it myself. But yeah, I didn't like the feeling at all.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'd be very nervous.

Gin Stephens: I remember one time in college, I was somewhere trapped, and I was

like, “I've got to get a ride back to campus.” This guy's like, “I'll take you.” I’m like, “Oh, great. Thank you.” And I had to ride his motorcycle. [laughs] I thought I was going to die.
Melanie Avalon: I think I have. But the memory I have was when I was really young in Germany and my uncle rode a motorcycle, and I can't actually remember if I actually rode on it or if I just said no and thought about what it would have been like to be on it. Either way, I don't have-- It makes me scared. So, I remember my sister.
Gin Stephens: It doesn't feel safe.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's so funny. My sister, who was even way younger than me at the time, she was like all for it, and right, that makes sense. She was riding with him everywhere. So, shall we go on to our next question?
Gin Stephens: Yes, this is from Juliana and the subject is "Not losing weight." She says, “Hi, ladies. Thank you so much for this podcast. I have been doing IF for five weeks. I do something between 19:5 to 21:3 depending on the day. Most of the time, it's a snack and a meal in the evening. I also run/walk for about 30 minutes in the morning, interval running, five days a week and do strength training 30 minutes three days a week. My fastest clean, just black coffee and water. I do not count calories and try to eat as clean as possible, but I am not denying myself of anything. I may eat a sugary treat, ice cream or cookies, etc., about two times a week. I do not count macros and rarely eat junk. This past five weeks, I've been losing and gaining the same four pounds, but I have lost three inches between my waist, my hip, and my abdomen after the second week. My clothes are not fitting differently. I need/want to lose at least 50 pounds, current weight 201. I am 5’5" tall and 44 years old. I have a condition named tortuous colon.” Have you ever heard of that, Melanie?
Melanie Avalon: I haven't.

Gin Stephens: Me, neither. Which she explained as, “Longer than normal intestines that causes a lot of constipation even when taking a lot of fiber supplements at the end of my eating window. Any help, suggestions, and advice on what I can do to lose weight? I am so frustrated and feeling very defeated. Thank you.”
Melanie Avalon: All right, Juliana. Thank you so much for your question. Oh, my goodness. I have so many thoughts about this question. First of all, I can't believe it's called tortuous colon. What an awful name. I hear you and I empathize with you incredibly with bowel movement struggles. Trust me, I know how awful that is. I want to say first of all, when I first started experiencing constipation which was in 2014 or so, the first thing I started doing was like all the fiber and all of that stuff that works for some people. I would highly suggest trying something different which is a lower fiber approach. If you're in a situation where you're really constipated, and the fiber is not working for you, it really for a lot of people just adds-- It basically just adds to the stuff that has to be

moving through and can make things much, much worse.

The carnivore people like to cite this one study as evidence that removing fiber gets rid of constipation. It's a very convincing study. The reason I'm hesitant about it is, it's basically the only study on the topic, and it's very, very small. That said, it's very, very convincing, and it's basically, they took people with constipation, and put them on a
zero-fiber diet. Every single person's constipation resolved, which is very telling. Again, it was a very small study and there haven't been more studies on it, especially, just like looking in the carnivore Facebook groups and things like that, most people seem to experience resolution of constipation, if it's something they've been struggling with. So, I'm not saying, you have to go carnivore or cut out all plants, but I'm saying, I would highly suggest trying a low fiber approach. Especially, low FODMAP fiber options can often work really, really well for people. We'll put a link in the show notes to that study.
As far as the weight loss, I have exciting, wonderful news for you. I know you're really frustrated, because she said, "I'm feeling very frustrated and defeated." It would be very frustrating and defeating if you hadn't actually tried a lot of the things that can really, really work for weight loss, but you haven't. So, that means there's so, so much potential to lose weight, and that is basically focusing on the food options. I know that you eat as clean as possible, which is amazing. I love that, but you haven't ever tried playing around with your macros. If you've never played around with your macros, there is massive potential here for losing weight. If you've never done it before, potentially pretty fast to see it change once you find the macros that work for you so. The more I talk about this, Gin, I really feel like I need to write this book about-- There's still not a book that talks about how you can do either low carb-high fat or high fat-low carb. All the books are like either a low carb book or they're like a plant-based vegan book. There's no one where it's like, “Hey, you can do either, just not the same time.”

Gin Stephens: You can do them at the same time.

Melanie Avalon: I mean literally the same time. But you can't have like--

Gin Stephens: I did. I had high fat and high carb. I'm telling you, when I lost my weight, I didn't restrict carbs or fat. I'm telling you, you can lose weight, all the weight you want. [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: But that's not the thesis of my book. The thesis of my book is picking high fat-low carb or low carb-high fat, just not in same day.
Gin Stephens: Well, but what I'm saying is, I thought you just said that you can't combine them and find it to work. Because I did.
Melanie Avalon: Well, my thesis would be you can combine them on different days. You could do high fat-low carb one day and the next day low carb-high fat.

Gin Stephens: But my point being that not everyone needs to do either of those.

Melanie Avalon: This is not the book that I'm trying to. Okay.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] You're trying to encourage people to try one of these two things, but you're not saying the only way you're going to lose weight is if you pick this or that.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, no, no, no. Oh, yeah. I'm so glad you clarified.

Gin Stephens: I thought you were saying that you can either choose low fat-high carb or when I say a high fat-low carb, either of those are the only two ways you could lose weight, pick one of those.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, no, no, no. Excellent clarification. No. What I'm saying is usually the books are either low carb books or they're plant based low fat books, and so I want to do one that says you can pick either one.
Gin Stephens: Okay, yeah, that makes sense. I do think either would be very healthy. I do think there's science supporting both of them. Both sides, depending on your body. My body doesn't do well with the higher fat.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. It's really a matter of finding-- If one of those approaches works, finding the one that works for you, and the reason I think that they're both so magical is that they set up the body to be in a state where it's easy to lose fat or pretty difficult to gain fat. So, if you're doing low carb-high fat and the high doesn't have to be high, it could really just be low carb. If you have weight to lose, it could just be low carb. You don't have to go crazy on the fats. That's going to lower insulin, it's going to really put you in a fat burning mode, and make it most likely easier to lose weight. Then, on the flip side, if you try high carb-low fat, if you're not taking in many fats, there's not really much of the potential to gain weight from that, especially, if you're combining it with IF. And then, on top of that with the fasting, then while fasting, you are likely tapping into the fat. So, it's the situation where you tap into fat during the fast and then while eating, it's unlikely that you're actually going to store fat from your meal. So, they're different situations, but they both work by really some metabolic magic that it's a tweak that I think goes beyond calories and stuff like that.
The importance on it though in my opinion is the low. Actually, low fat or actually low carb, not just sort of low fat or sort of low carb, like actually. So, normally, that's like 10% of calories from whatever thing it may be. And if you really want to hack the low carb one, this is my little hack. You can make any added fat sources be MCT oil, the C8 version only, and that actually will ramp up metabolism, can encourage more fat burning in your eating window, to clarify. So, it can be a great hack as well and focusing on protein, so, always having adequate protein. Because excess protein doesn't really become fat. It actually preferentially becomes muscle or the amino acids tend to just be

burned. So, thoughts, Gin?

Gin Stephens: I've got some things to add to Juliana that I think are super-duper important. First of all, she's only been doing intermittent fasting for five weeks. For anybody who's read Fast. Feast. Repeat or heard me talk about it, I've got the 28-day Fast Start in there, and that's four weeks. I tell you not to expect any weight loss at all in your first four weeks, because that's the time for your body to be adjusting to intermittent fasting. After your first four weeks, on day 29, that's when you can start figuring out what your weight is doing. But that is your baseline. Whatever your weight is on day 29 is your baseline. It is all explained in the 28-day FAST Start chapter by the way.
If we had that information from Juliana that would be better. What was her weight on day 29, and then she's only one week past that. She only has one week of trend to see what's happening. I always talk about weighing daily and calculating your weekly average. I did it paper pencil. I calculate my average, because I can see it. But there are apps that actually show you your trend. Happy Scale is my favorite. It's iOS only. If you are using Happy Scale, it'll show you what your trend is doing. If it's slightly trending downward, or if you're staying the same, or if it's trending upward. That's so much better than just weighing every day and just looking at the fluctuations. Because Juliana said, she's losing and gaining the same 4 pounds, but really, we fluctuate within a range. It's very, very possible that-- Again, ignore those first 28 days. Maybe your weight in this past week of your fifth week has actually trended down and it's hiding in the fluctuations.
I also think it's so important that she's lost three inches between her waist, her hip, and her abdomen after the second week. You are losing something. If your measurements are going down, forget about your clothes, because I talk about in Fast. Feast. Repeat and Delay, Don't Deny about something called honesty pants. We all probably have at least one pair of pants like that, or maybe it's shorts. For me, it's a skort that fits really snug and it doesn't have any stretch in it. But when I was gaining weight back in the day, when I was 210 pounds, all of my clothes were dishonesty clothes. I could gain or lose probably 20 pounds, and they would still stretch on fitting me. So, you can't necessarily say, “Well, my pants all still fit the same" because they might be super stretchy, like mine always were when I was at my higher weights. It was a long time before I noticed a difference in my clothes. So, you can't go by that unless they are really snug fitting with no stretch. Honesty pants, get some. That's really important. Photos are so important.
Put on an outfit, maybe those black biker shorts or something, the tight ones and a sports bra, and take pictures from different angles, frontward, facing sideways. Take those pictures, and then repeat them every week or two, and compare them wearing the same exact outfit.
Also, with the amount of exercise Juliana is doing, the scale is likely to be the least useful tool. If you're doing interval running five days a week for 30 minutes, strength training three days a week, expect to see changes in your body before the scale.
Eventually, the scale is going to go down if you're losing fat, but it's not going to be

dramatic with all that muscle building stuff going on. It's not the time for panic. Five weeks in, I would not be freaking out at all. Because you're only one week past your adjustment period. I also want to say that is just a rough rule of thumb, the 28 days. Maybe, five weeks is your body's adjustment period. Your body might need eight weeks. It just depends on your metabolic and hormonal health. The longer you've been overweight, the more likely it could take you longer to adjust.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that was excellent.

Gin Stephens: Well, thank you.

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. This question comes from Sarah. The subject is, "When you have a cold" and Sarah says, “Hello. I've been doing IF for three months and feeling like it will definitely be a permanent lifestyle. Losing weight and feeling great. I just discovered the podcast and I've started back at the beginning episode. I'm up to number
25. I have two questions. So, number one, how do you handle things like colds, flu, etc.? I often drink tea with honey and lemon when I have a cold. Should/could people go off IF when they have a situation like this?” So, we can go ahead and answer that one. We've actually answered this one quite a few times on the show.
Gin Stephens: Well, when you're sick, I really want you to listen to your body. Because really, sometimes, your body will guide you to fast more and that will be what feels right, and sometimes, your body will guide you to eat, and do what you feel like will make you feel better. As far as honey and lemon, obviously that's not going to be part of a clean fast, that wouldn't be fasting but sometimes we set fasting aside. If I had a terrible sore throat, and I didn't feel good, and I felt like drinking some orange juice would make me feel better, I would drink it, I would just open my window, I would have that. I wouldn't sweat it or stress about it, because the time to be worrying about losing weight is not while you're sick. Your body's working on healing, getting rid of whatever that is. So, listen to your body. Set fasting aside if you need to. You'll come right back to it when you're feeling better. Fast if it feels good.
Melanie Avalon: Yes, I do think our bodies are pretty intuitive when it comes to our hunger when we have a cold. Especially, in regard to if it's a virus or bacteria, it actually affects-- There's really interesting studies that affects our hunger because of how the immune system deals with it.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I talked about that in Fast. Feast. Repeat. It's in the Frequently Asked Questions. I talked about a study about that. Anyway, so, yes. Listen to your body, again.
Melanie Avalon: All right, ready for question two?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Question 2. “How do you handle events that occurred during your window that aren't going to have foods you want to eat? Maybe you arrive and discover the food isn't window worthy or other surprising situations out of your control. Do you just keep fasting? Please talk about navigating these types of situations. Thank you.”

Gin Stephens: Well, there's no one answer that's going to cover all of those situations, but I just think about what time is it, what's going to happen later? Let's say, it's early in the day. Let's say it's a lunch event. I go and I discovered the food is not window worthy. I'm not going to eat. I'm going to keep fasting. I don't normally eat lunch. Of course, we know that. But let's say, it's a lunch event, and I get there, and the food is window worthy, I would go ahead and eat. But now, let's say, it's time for my eating window.
Maybe, I decided to wait to till I got there to open my window, now it's 6 PM, and I show up at this event, and the food is disappointing, and it's 6 PM. Well, how long am I going to be there? If it's only a short period of time, and I can go home and eat something that I love, I will keep fasting till I can get home and eat. But if I'm not going to be home till 9 PM, I'm not going to fast till 9 PM. I'll make the best of what's there, and I can always make the best of it.
If I really thought the food wasn't going to be good, I would eat before I went if it was during my window. I would just make a plan for that. There's really no one way to handle it. if I showed up somewhere and it was 6 PM and I was going to be there till 10 PM, and the food was something I don't eat, okay, I would need it. If it was fried fish or something, [laughs] I don't like fish at all. Certainly, I wouldn't be eating fried fish, because that would-- No. I would just be like, “Okay, I'll just wait and I would eat--" I'd make the best of eating later. But that's going to be very unusual. I can usually find something that I can eat anywhere. What do you say about that, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: I guess it really depends on what your normal eating window is, because this would be more of something a challenge for you, Gin, because your eating window is earlier. So, it does naturally fall-- For you, it would be really inconvenient to eat late, but for me, I'm always eating late. So, it actually doesn't really ever affect me because I always am eating right before I go to bed anyways.
Gin Stephens: Sometimes, the food is disappointing, but there's always going to be tomorrow. If you go somewhere, and the food is not like, “Oh my gosh. This is the best food I've ever had--” When I was with my family at the beach, we went to a buffet. Yeah, it's not my favorite going to a buffet, but they had crab legs on the buffet. I do like crab legs, and I ate a little bit of anything that looked good. It was probably my least favorite meal the whole time I was there, and I knew it. I'm never excited about a buffet. But I was eating with my family, we were all there. and tomorrow's a new day to eat something that's more delicious. You know what I'm saying? I didn't stress over it. I would have preferred a different meal, but this is what my family wanted to eat, and I just rolled with it. I didn't sit there and not eat. I just ate it, and I enjoyed it. But the food I had the next day was better and that's okay.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, I am glad you said that. To clarify, when I go out to eat dinner, for example, and it's earlier, so it's not what I would have been eating. If it's a situation where I'm getting dinner at a restaurant with people that I 100% get dinner, I usually end up eating more as well after because it's not usually enough food and one meal at dinner

for me. One thing though I would encourage you, it also depends like how foods affect you. Some people can handle lots of foods and they won't experience too many negative side effects. I'm very jealous of Gin and her digestion and everything. But for me, I respond pretty intensely if I don't eat within certain types of foods that really work well with my body. So, I don't feel any pressure if I go to something, and it's food that I know won't make me feel well. It does not faze me. I don't feel any pressure to eat it. It doesn't like stress me out. If it's that situation, I usually will just keep fasting and eat afterwards.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, I wouldn't eat food that would make me feel really bad.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think it's easier-- because I feel the two main types of situations with food is like an event where the food is the event, a restaurant or something. I'm just thinking about this because in that case, I usually can always make something work at a restaurant.
Gin Stephens: Me too.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I usually can.

Melanie Avalon: I can't think of any situation where I wouldn't be able to, honestly. I'm thinking of-- even it was IHOP or something I could probably still. I have to have crazy tweaks to the menu and asked for things. But in general restaurants can be, you can usually find something that works. The other situation would be where it's an event and there's food out and those types of situations, it's usually a situation where the food is not the main event and you don't necessarily have to be eating. So, those types of situations, I like to just keep fasting, but I realize some people that might fall right in their window when they're supposed to be eating. So, Gin, if you were at an event that was when you would typically be eating, but it wasn't a dinner, there was-- what is it, hors d'oeuvres?
Gin Stephens: Hors d'oeuvres.

Melanie Avalon: And appetizers, and you knew you're going to be getting home late, but there wasn't really food that you wanted. So, would you just munch, what would you do?
Gin Stephens: Well, usually when there's hors d'oeuvre, there's going to be something that I want. There's usually cheese and crackers, I like that, or maybe, shrimp over there or something. [laughs] Even though I don't like fish, I do like shrimp with cocktail sauce or something like that. Again, I can usually find something. Now, if it was just light hors d'oeuvres, something like that, I would probably go home and eat something else.
Maybe have an egg sandwich or something. I'd love an egg sandwich. Yeah, I can eat that later at night and be fine.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, so, an egg sandwich, that's what, bread and eggs? Scrambled eggs?
Gin Stephens: Yeah. Oh, so good with a little mayonnaise. Delicious.

Melanie Avalon: It is so interesting. I don't think I've had that before.

Gin Stephens: Oh, we all love egg sandwiches around here. Yep. Scrambled, I make great scrambled eggs. Scrambled eggs on bread with a little mayonnaise, so good.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, I have one little thought that maybe you were talking about the fish. I'm almost done with Tim Spector’s book. What's the one I'm reading?
Gin Stephens: You're reading Spoon-Fed?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Do you remember the chapter--? I already knew about this, but every time I read more about it, I'm just perpetually shocked by it, about the fraud in the seafood industry.
Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Friends, it is shocking. There's a lot of stuff that goes on in the food industry and I'm often saying it's shocking. I feel like this is up there. Out of all the stuff that goes down in the food industry, top three for shocking stuff. Basically, there's just lies. They've done so many tests, and I've been taking a lot of notes, and I'm really excited to interview him. But they do tests and I think he said, 50% of the raw seafood in LA is not what it says it is. They did a test in DC and it was food in restaurants and stores, and 25% was not what it said it was. This is on the shelves and in restaurants, and they said it's usually worse in the restaurants. So, the fish you might be eating might not be what it says on the menu. The restaurant doesn't always know.
Gin Stephens: Because they bought it thinking it-- They were told what it was, and it's not that. Yeah, this is one time I'm not sad that I don't like fish.
Melanie Avalon: The species that are often subbed out, they'll use tilapia. They'll use apparently some sort of catfish from China. There's a few other ones. Yeah, it just makes me really scared. I eat so much fish, but I only eat brands that I trust, and I shop at Whole Foods. Until now, I mean right now I still trust their system.
Gin Stephens: Would you eat fish at a restaurant now?

Melanie Avalon: Well, the thing is, I only eat a very limited species because of the mercury content, and I'll put a link in the show notes. I have a blog post on the mercury content and a little bit more about all of this, and I have a blog post on the fish fraud. It's in my ButcherBox post. So, I'll put links to both of those. I really only eat tilapia, but I wouldn't want to get that at a restaurant because I really, really want to know the source

of it. So, I eat salmon. I might eat salmon at a restaurant, and then I eat shrimp and scallops. So, I could eat that. But it's crazy.
Gin Stephens: It really, really is. It really is the amount of fraud out there is crazy.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it makes me really, really nervous which is another reason I wanted to develop my own supplement. We talked about this before but there's a lot of sketchy stuff in that industry as well.
In any case, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode227. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens. I think that is all of the things. Anything from you, Gin before we go?
Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful, and I will talk to you next week.
Gin Stephens: All right, 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. The music was composed by Leland Cox. See you next week.

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

More on Gin: GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

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

 

 

Aug 15

Episode 226: CGMs, Blood Glucose, Large Volume Eating, Electrolyte Balance, Cryo-Toning, Infused Water, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 226 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 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To masszymes.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save Up 10% Off Any Order!

18:20 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

21:05 - Listener Feedback: Susan - Prolonged Fasting - Not A Fan 

24:05 - Listener Feedback: Emilie - Thank You LMNT

26:30 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go Tdrinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!!

29:05 - Listener Q&A: Leslie - Splitting OMAD Up

These are a few of my favorite things!

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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.)

46:15 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

48:35 - Listener Q&A: Tish - Cryo-Toning - Follow Up

The Science Of Fat Cells: Losing Weight, Gaining Weight, Killing Fat Cells, Liposuction, Body Contouring, CoolSculpting®, ECM Remodeling, And More!

56:40 - Listener Q&A: Paul - Is Infused Water Breaking Fast?

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 226 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing your when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you. I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine - Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.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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Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 226 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 my eyelashes look amazing.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, did you get Beautycounter’s new mascara?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's it. I was so excited.

Gin Stephens: It's what I've been waiting for, because as much as I love Beautycounter, their mascara didn't blow me away. It was literally the only thing was that they're all mascara. I was using another safe mascara that I was like, “Darn, I wish Beautycounter had the great mascara.” They came out with a new one, and it was right now, we can only-- it's not available for the public yet, but it's about to be. So, by the time this comes out, will it be?

Melanie Avalon: Yes, it should be.

Gin Stephens: But it's amazing. It is better than any mascara I've ever used in my life. That's how excited I am.

Melanie Avalon: I think this is the most exciting thing you've ever told me. [laughs]

Gin Stephens: I couldn't wait to tell you.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. I'm so happy. For me, my mascara history, I've always been a mascara combiner because I could never find one mascara that would do everything I wanted.

Gin Stephens: I'm too lazy. I'm not going to combine anything.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I was using Beautycounter’s volumizing mascara, and then, I was using Pacifica, and I was blending them. Then, they just sent the new one which is called Think Big, I think.

Gin Stephens: I think so.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: It's gotten big in the name of it.

Melanie Avalon: It's amazing.

Gin Stephens: It just goes on big. It goes on-- [laughs] Anyway, I love it.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so happy. Yes, listeners, do not pass go. Go get this mascara right now. For listeners who are not familiar, we love Beautycounter, because they were founded on a mission to remove endocrine disruptors from makeup. Gin, with her new book coming out now as well as me knows all about.

Gin Stephens: It's a huge deal on, didn't want to listen, but [laughs] I switched because you were so excited about it. I'm like, “Well, okay. Cleaning up is never a bad idea.” Then, I did the research for Clean(ish). Then, I'm like, “Okay, this is really, really important.” I didn't really connect all together. Yeah, we know, we want to have things that are safe, but our toxic load is so much bigger than it was before.

Melanie Avalon: It's huge.

Gin Stephens: That's the thing. It might not have mattered 20 years ago to the point that it matters now, because it all adds up. It's like our bucket gets more and more full.

Melanie Avalon: I'm reading a book called Diet for Sex written by an acupuncturist. It's actually very interesting. But she was having a chapter on endocrine disruptors and toxic compounds in our environment, and she said-- I think it was like, what is it the World Health Organization released a statement? They basically came up with nine environmental toxins that are a problem for us. So, this was the Environmental Burden of Disease project that the World Health Organization did. They basically found nine compounds, and the scientists concluded that 3% to 7% of the burden of disease in Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands, which I feel-- I don't know, I feel the US has just as many if not more compounds than those countries.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm sure we do. Because our criteria are not as strict here.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. It was attributed to environmental pollutants, which is like-- That's a big statement for them to make. If you think about it, there's basically three avenues. There's our food, which we often-- I think a lot of people focus on cleaning up their food, because you're directly putting it in your body. There's our air, the environment that we live in. But then there's our skincare makeup that we're putting directly on our skin, and it can directly go into our bloodstream. It's very, very shocking the implications that it can have.

Gin Stephens: Oh, and I had my attorney meeting for my book.

Melanie Avalon: Should I get the link really quick?

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Get the link. So, if listeners would like to clean up their skincare makeup, you can shop with us, and our link is melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. Get that mascara.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm a huge fan. I just had my meeting with my attorney for Macmillan. I’ll show you though, attorney that-- I don't know. We didn't do that for Fast. Feast. Repeat. Maybe, they did it and just didn't call me. I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Like the law department?

Gin Stephens: I never had a call with the law department for Fast. Feast. Repeat. They must have just looked at it on their own. But this attorney called me on it because you said you had one for What When Wine. I was super nervous. I was so nervous.

Melanie Avalon: Interestingly, when I had mine, because I was on Imprint, but the attorney was that Norton like the head.

Gin Stephens: This was from Macmillan, yeah. even though I'm at an Imprint too.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, cool.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm with St. Martin's Press. Well, it was awesome. I was so scared. It's like, “I'm so scared.” She's like, “Don't be scared.” She was very complimentary about the book. She said, I love the way you phrase things like a scientist. Of course, I'm married to a scientist. Things are rarely “proven.” We have evidence. Anyway, she was pleased with the way I wrote it. That was good. It was just a few little wording things. She's like, “Instead of saying hazardous, maybe you should say problematic.” I'm like, “All right, fine.” It was a tiny little thing. It was nothing big.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, no, that's amazing.

Gin Stephens: It was amazing. I feel so good. She said she's going to make changes in her life after reading it.

Melanie Avalon: I remember that was happening with me when the people that were reading it. It's so wonderful. It's like, “That's great. That's so exciting.”

in Stephens: Well, yeah. When I was reading my other book for Audible or for, well, I was reading for the audiobook, the director was like, “I'm going to start intermittent fasting.” [laughs] Every day, he was like, “Oh, that sounds really-- You make it sound fun.” I’m like, “Yay.” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: With this, our people wanting to clean up their environment or they--?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, she's a mom, and she's got kids and she says, she's inspired to do it for a family, and also, there's just one chapter about intermittent fasting, but she also was interested in that.

Melanie Avalon: Well, that's amazing.

Gin Stephens: Because it's not an intermittent fasting book. But in the-- Let your body self-clean section. Intermittent fasting is not the only way we let our bodies self-clean, of course. It's just one way our body self-cleans.

Melanie Avalon: You don't tell me the exact date, but will you have galleys soon?

Gin Stephens: I will. I'll get you a galley.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Can we book you for my show?

Gin Stephens: Pretty sure can. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: [laughs]

Gin Stephens: We can. That would be fun.

Melanie Avalon: Oof, exciting. [laughs] Awesome.

Gin Stephens: I'm really proud of this book, because I don't think there's one book that necessarily puts it all together in the same way that I did where it's talking about your food, and what you're putting on your body and, your cleaning products, and things you're surrounding yourself with, but also trusting your body to do some stuff, too, and there's so much we can do, and then letting you decide as a reader what you're willing to do. There's no like, “This is what you must do." Anybody who knows me knows I'm not going to tell you exactly what to do. But it's guiding you to find a way that is going to be cleanish for you.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so excited to read it.

Gin Stephens: Well, go ahead. I hope you love it.

Melanie Avalon: I forgot. Is it similar length to your last book?

Gin Stephens: It's longer. It's 400 pages.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: I know.

Melanie Avalon: Are they going to hyperlink your references or the references are in it?

Gin Stephens: Well, we were just talking about that, actually, yesterday. A lot of my references, of course, a lot of journal articles, but a lot of them are also things from the EPA or the World Health Organization, documents like that, that I used for my sources. In the reference section, some of them, like if it's an EPA document, for example, that lives on the web, they're going to put the name of it, and describe it, and then a hyperlink for it. I think you'll be able to hyperlink through the reference section in the electronic version.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. That makes sense.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I'm not sure what the others will look like, because the beauty of having editors is they do all that. Even for the journal articles that you're getting from PubMed, they've all got a link that you can put. So, instead of me trying to format the journal articles, I didn't even bother, I just said, "Here they are. [laughs] Y'all do it, however you want to." It's amazing. That's like, I feel so good.

Melanie Avalon: Well, congratulations. I'm very excited for you.

Gin Stephens: Thank you.

Gin Stephens: Anything up with you?

Melanie Avalon: I've been wearing a CGM again, because I remember I was wearing CGMs for quite a while, and then I got burnt out. Well, I just got tired of monitoring. So, I put one on again. I'm very, very happy. This time around, even though, I'm eating the same diet, I'm not really sure what changed. It's very interesting. I want to share this. Probably, you will get higher blood sugars while fasting and stuff like that. The one I'm wearing right now is Levels. I'm going to be interviewing Kara again at NutriSense. I'm going to ask her about my specific pattern.

But my pattern right now, pretty consistently is-- so, I eat at night, a huge amount of food, and then, usually right before for eating, it's usually in the 70s or 80s, and then, I eat-- It doesn't usually go above 120, and then, it comes down all night. It pretty much stays in the 70s or 80s after that. What's interesting is, I wake up, it's usually like in the 80s. I have a little bit of coffee, I get going, every morning, it spikes to 110, 115. This is when I'm fasted, and then, it comes down after that and tends to get in the 80s again, maybe 90s, which I'd rather it be lower. I find that spike really, really interesting that happens in the morning with the coffee. So, it's very, very interesting seeing through data. Have you worn one recently or--?

Gin Stephens: No, Levels is sending me one. Yep, I got an email today that said, it's on the way.

Melanie Avalon: When you did Zoe, did you were one that you could monitor?

Gin Stephens: Well, it was a FreeStyle Libre. You can look at it directly on the monitor, but it's hard to tell the data. You're just barely able to just see zigzags. So, I found a third-party website that you could work with like you would.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, so, sort of like what Levels and NutriSense is doing.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Yeah, it was a third-party website where you could plug in the monitor to your computer and it synced it with the website, and then, it told you your numbers. Yeah, so, I was able to look at them specifically, but only because I took that extra step.

Melanie Avalon: Basically, for listeners, I probably should have given some definitions. So, CGM is Continuous Glucose Monitor. You put it on-- I'm actually putting another video on my Instagram pretty soon showing how you put it on. So, that'll probably be out by the time this airs. So, you can check that out. But it's painless to apply, it measures your interstitial fluid, so the fluid around your cells, and measures your blood sugar continuously, which is very, very cool. I like to personally check it against a glucometer, like a fingerstick that you have at home, just to make sure that it's accurate because sometimes they can be off, but the precision is usually never off. The accuracy can be off, but the precision usually isn't. So, what that means is, if it's off by 10 points or something--

Gin Stephens: It's always off by 10.

Melanie Avalon: It's always off by 10. Yeah, it's not going to be all over the place. Mine right now seems to be spot on, which is really, really nice. But they're usually only available by prescription. So, there are companies now, like I just mentioned, Levels, NutriSense, that are giving access to people to get them. I have links for both of those. If listeners want to get one for themselves, so for Levels, they're actually on a waitlist. They have 115,000 waitlist of people, which is crazy. You can skip the waitlist with my link. It's melanieavalon.com/levelscgm. Then, NutriSense, they're not on a waitlist, but I have a discount. It's melanieavalon.com/nutrisensecgm. MELANIEAVALON will get you some sort of discount. A pretty good one, I think. But it's just really, really eye opening, and it was really fun to bring it back after not having done it for a while. I still want to do it while I'm doing carnivores or something, and see what that looks like.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that would be interesting. I think mine was just delivered literally right back this minute because FedEx just knocked on the door.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. Gin, are you going to put it on?

Gin Stephens: Well, not right this second. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Are we excited? Let me know. Let me know if you do. Oh, another little note. I don't know if you know this, Gin. You want to give it at least 24 hours before you judge its accuracy even?

Gin Stephens: That was the same with the Zoe one. They said, “Let it settle in.” [laughs] get used to you.

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I'm trying to figure out when I want to do it, because it's good for a month, right?

Melanie Avalon: Nope, two weeks.

Gin Stephens: Oh, only two weeks? Okay. All right. Well, then that. I'm going to the beach and I'm going to be there for three weeks. So, I don't know that I want to be wearing it while I'm at the beach. I'm going to get in the water and yeah, in the ocean, and it won't be my normal routine, people are coming to visit.

Melanie Avalon: I will say that the two things that make a huge difference. Taking the berberine really, really helps, and after I do cryo, it drops and then it stays low. What's interesting, too, is when I do the cryo, it spikes really high, and I don't know if it's actually spiking or if the cold is freaking out the sensor, because after that, it goes down, and it goes down lower than what it was before.

Gin Stephens: Well, then, that actually it sounds like it's doing something. It's like blasts the glucose out of where it's hiding, and, then you’re low, isn’t that would it sound like? [giggles] If afterwards, it went back to normal than that would be yeah, the cold freaks it out. But it goes lower. So, it's blasting it out. I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: I need to do more research.

Gin Stephens: My scientific language is just-- [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. This is how we talk on this show.

Gin Stephens: My cryotherapy blasts out the glucose. [laughs] 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's funny. People have reported to me during cryo that their blood sugar, wearing CGM said it dropped really, really low. One girl told me that she would faint in cryo from dropping too low. So, in any case--

Gin Stephens: Or, maybe, your body needs more while you're going through that cold. Maybe, your body uses it up. Your body's like, “Oh, my God, this glucose, I got to use it up,” because I don't know, because of the cold.

Melanie Avalon: But it's a really big spike. It goes from 85 to 125, and then it drops down to 70s.

Gin Stephens: Something's happening.

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Melanie Avalon: Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, to start things off, we have some feedback. This comes from Susan, and the subject is "Prolonged fasting, not a fan." Susan says, I recently listened to Episode 223. I'm a fan of not always having the same fasting/eating window every day. I teach water aerobics, and in the summer, jump from 6 classes a week to 10 to 12. I have had to shorten my fasting window on busy days. On Sundays, off day, I can do a longer fast. I listened to my body and don't beat myself up if I eat earlier one day. It's about being healthy and working with your body. Thanks for your podcast. By the way, I am 63, five feet tall, weigh 135 pounds. Not my ideal weight, but I focus on how fit I am, and how much better I feel. Only been fasting for five months. So, still a work in progress."

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think Susan is a perfect example of being responsive to your changing daily schedule. Gosh, I'm hungry just when I swim a little bit in the ocean for 30 minutes. I can't imagine doing 10 to 12 water aerobics classes a week. That's like two a day or even more than two a day really, because if she's only doing-- well, If she's doing it six days a week, that would be two a day with 12. Anyhow, that's a lot of exercise and also being in the water that uses a lot of energy just because of the water temperature. Your body needs to compensate for being in the cooler water. So, you're going to need more fuel. That makes perfect sense. I'm a big fan of doing exactly what you're doing, Susan, and listening to your body, and all of that exertion, especially in the water, your body needs more fuel. So, good work.

Melanie Avalon: I love what you said. I’ve been thinking about it. I feel there are two major mentalities or things I see happening from the intermittent fasting movement that I think are a little bit problematic, and that I want to dismantle. One of them is what you just said. It's that people-- or I don't know, if you said this exactly, but people I think get really, really rigid with their fasting windows and think that they can't adjust it, or they can't try different things. I don't know, I think there's more of an intuition that can come into play, especially after you've been doing fasting for a while. Maybe not right at the beginning when you're trying to figure it out exactly but afterwards, I don't ever want there to be fear about having to stay in this exact window and not evolving with your body with your fasting window.

The second thing, and I feel we might circle back to this with some other questions, because I think people often think that fasting is the magic cure all and that what you eat doesn't matter at all. It's just the fasting and the foods that you're choosing don't play a role. I think that's something to dismantle a little bit.

Gin Stephens: Yep, absolutely. Shall we move on?

Melanie Avalon: Sure.

Gin Stephens: We have feedback from Emily, and she says, "Thank you LMNT." I always want to call it LMNT, by the way. But you pronounce it element?

Melanie Avalon: Element. Mm-hmm, yeah.

Gin Stephens: LMNT. [laughs] It spelled LMNT for anyone who's wondering. All right, she says, "Hi, Gin and Melanie. I've been listening and IFing with y'all since the beginning, which I love. Thank you for all--" that was me. [laughs] That wasn't in the question. She said, “Thank you for all the information you share. After IFing for almost four years, I started getting horrible headaches in the evening after I ate my one meal a day. I recently upped my water intake to my body weight in ounces, so I knew I wasn't dehydrated." I'm going to pop in there and say actually, having more water than your body needs causes electrolyte depletion.

Melanie Avalon: It can. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. It's counterintuitive because we've been told that you must pound down the water, and you can't trust your thirst, and you must drink so much water. But when you're fasting, it changes things up, because food isn't coming in and you just having so much water. A lot of water in the fasted state actually can cause the problem to be worse than if you're drinking a lot while you're eating. That's just something to keep in mind. Because it can deplete your electrolytes more than if you were not doing intermittent fasting. So, just be cautious about that, because in our whole society, the common thought is, the more water you drink, the better. That is not true. It can actually be dangerous.

Anyhow, back to her feedback. She said, "I went ahead and tried the LMNT packets by Robb Wolf with my one meal a day, and poof, no more headaches. The orange flavor’s my favorite. Thanks for the recommendation." I really think that her electrolytes were being depleted by it by so much water and the element restored them. Keep in mind, she's having the orange with her meal, and that you can have all the flavored ones all you want during your eating window, but during your fast, stick to the raw and unflavored. That one is safe for clean fasting.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so excited because I'm interviewing Robb Wolf again next week actually, which has listeners know it well. I don't know if they know, but Robb Wolf is one of the main reasons I'm doing what I'm doing today, because I read The Paleo Solution back in 2012, and I've been a huge, huge follower of his work ever since then. I think he cofounded it, LMNT, because he realized the huge importance that electrolytes play, especially often people with fasting, and especially, people on ketogenic diets. I have so many questions for him next week. I'm so excited. But basically, electrolyte balance is just so, so huge, and it can be involved in a lot of things that people often experience. For example, they might think is keto flu or detox, but it might be electrolytes. So, things like hunger, and cramps, and headaches, and tiredness, and dizziness, and I get so many questions in my Facebook group about recommended electrolyte supplements, but most of them on the market are full of sugars, and flavorings, and additives, and it's just no bueno.

We love LMNT, because it's none of that. Gin just mentioned, they have the raw, unflavored one. That one's totally, completely safe for your fast. So, you can have it during the clean fast and it's all good. Then, they have so many flavors that are amazing, that are not safe for clean fast because they're sweetened with stevia. But you can have those in your eating window of course, and there's a lot of really, really yummy flavors. They have a chocolate one. They just released a great fruit, but I think it's sold out. They have a watermelon, which is my favorite. They have a citrus one that is really good if you want to make margaritas. We actually have an amazing offer for our listeners. You can get it completely free. My favorite is only we can give things away completely free. So, if you go to--

Gin Stephens: That is fun.

Melanie Avalon: I know. It's my favorite. So, if you go to drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast, you can get a sampler pack. It includes eight packets of four of their flavors. You'll get two raw, two citrus, two raspberry, and two orange. You pay $5 for shipping. If you don't like it, they'll even reimburse you the shipping. So, literally, you have nothing to lose. What's interesting about this is, when we first started our partnership with LMNT, I think they were testing this, testing if it was going to be cost effective to give it away completely free. Clearly, it is because they decided to keep doing this. So, clearly people are really liking it once they try it.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that proves it right there, if people keep buying it. Emily, super happy that the LMNT got rid of your headaches. Oh, and that orange flavor is her favorite, and that one is in the sample pack. So, get it now. All right. Shall we move on to our questions?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Right. We have a question from Leslie. The subject is "Splitting OMAD, One Meal A Day up." Leslie says, "Hi, I'm Melanie and Gin, I've been a very long time One Meal A Day eater. I've loved your podcast, especially learning the power of clean fasting. I recently got a CGM." Oh, that's exciting. [giggles] Oh, my gosh, I did not plan that. She says, "I love seeing the data in real time. From the data so far, I believe splitting my one meal a day into two smaller meals will help my blood glucose levels. I don't want my volume to be much bigger than it is five to six hour eating window most likely but need help actually reversing my volume eating ritual I've become so comfortable with. I know it's mostly psychological, but probably a bit physiological too, and need some practical advice.

Seems simple really, but would like some motivation from both of you. I know you've talked, Gin, about an “appetizer” before your meal, and Melanie, I think you've talked about some raw veg pre-meal but I just like some more ideas. I need a lot of evidence for my brain to prove that, number one, this can be fun, because it's actually more of a challenge for me than one meal a day. Number two, I can do it with ease and mental stillness. Thank you, and thank you so much for all of the value you put out there in the world."

Gin Stephens: Oh, thank you, Leslie. I actually have heard this from people who have been doing the monitoring through, of course, Zoe, and also through data-driven fasting, people who are using CGMs find that they do have better glucose control with a slightly longer, like you're saying, five-to-six-hour window, and moving eating to farther ends of it, like eat, wait a while, eat again. Of course, we wouldn't know this without CGMs. It's only been recently that we can get them to try them. We're learning a lot, and we're all different, of course, when it comes to how our bodies respond to what we eat. But the key for me is that when I open my window, I need to feel satisfied from it, as if I just tried to nibble a little bit and have a little something, then I'm like starving, and I tend to eat longer and more, because I'm trying to-- I don't know, it doesn't do it for me. It doesn't satisfy me. Lately, I'm doing really well opening my window. Have you ever tried Daily Harvest, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: No, I know, you're a huge fan.

Gin Stephens: I'm a huge fan, and if people want to read more about it, I have it on the Favorite Things tab at ginstephens.com, and they're actually, officially sponsoring Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast, which is exciting. I've been using them for a while, and they have these harvest bowls and soups that I love, and I've really opened my window with that in those days, for real. I think they're vegan, but I'm not vegan. I might add some butter in there or whatever, but make it a little more satisfying, but I might not. Sometimes, I just do them the way they are. With their soups, I don't usually add as much water as they say. I just put a little bit of water, because I like them thicker instead of more of a soup. But because they're substantial, the ones that I tend to get are the ones that have beans, or lentils, or something like that. A lot of them have kale or sweet potato, and so, they just are so satisfying. I like them because they're hot even in the summer. They're hot, that satisfies me. The hot veggie centric, it fills me up, makes me feel good, and then, I'm perfectly fine to wait till dinner, and I'm not going around eating a bunch of stuff out of the kitchen. So, that would be my appetizers. Some people would consider it a lunch, but to me, it's the soup course. Again, you can find it on ginstephens.com on the Favorite Things tab, or you can just go to dailyharvest.com and use the promo code, IFSTORIES. That works.

Melanie Avalon: They've asked us, I think, before about sponsoring the show.

Gin Stephens: Well, I just really loved them. See that's for me, a lot of the companies that sponsor Intermittent Fasting Stories start off with I'm using them. Like Green Chef, for example. They sponsored this one too, and I was like, “Get me Green Chef,” to the company that finds my advertisers. [laughs] Because it starts with me, ease in them, and then I'm like, I really want this company because I use them and I love them. I also love their smoothies. What I'll do seriously, this is really what I do. I'll have my bowl, and then later, I eat dinner with Chad, and it is often Green Chef, which is funny. Then, later, to close our window, we'll have a Daily Harvest smoothie. I know that sounds nuts, but that really it like--

My mother was just here visiting and we had people over for dinner, so I had to make a big meal because there were seven people for dinner, and I spent so much money on dinner for seven at the grocery store buying all the ingredients, and then we had so much leftover even after the dinner for seven. I just love that it's easy. You’ve got the portion, you eat it, you move on. You don't have leftover everything. My point was that I spend more money at the grocery store than I do with these companies. But that's just the way I shop at the grocery store like a crazy person. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I would love. It'd be funny to see both of us side by side shopping at a grocery store.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm like, “Ooh, that looks good. I'm going to buy that,” and then, I come home and Chad says, “How much was that?” I'm like, “I don't know.” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I go in and volume buy, pounds and pounds of the same three things.

Gin Stephens: Now, I'm wandering around buying a little bit of everything, and I always end up with flours, and this cheese, and that cheese, and yeah, crackers.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Oh, my goodness.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. [laughs] Totally a different, different cart than Melanie's cart.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. The meal timeline is like a crescendo for both of us. We start light and then there's the main and then light again.

Gin Stephens: But I can't start too light. If I start too light, then I'm eating more than I need. It doesn't satisfy me. I have to make sure whatever I start with satisfies me. I'm like medium-medium. Maybe, medium-light, medium-heavier if [laughs] that makes sense.

Melanie Avalon: With Leslie, she's asking how to, in a six-hour window, eat a meal, a smaller meal, stop eating, eat a smaller meal. That's what she's asking about. You know what's really interesting is, our mutual friend, Cynthia Thurlow, I was talking to her yesterday, because she was on Megyn Kelly's show yesterday.

Gin Stephens: Oh, my gosh, that's so exciting.

Melanie Avalon: Isn't that so exciting?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: We were like fangirling. I listened to it, and it was really good, and I just thought about it, because she talks about this. Megyn asked her to talk about something about the eating window and not snacking between the meals and the eating window. Then, Megyn asked like, “Oh, should you not snack between the meals, if you're having a longer eating window.” I'm paraphrasing. I'll put a link in the show notes to that episode. But basically, what Cynthia was saying was, what Leslie had picked up on here, that people often have better glucose control when they're not overeating or volume eating, that maybe it can be practical to do what Leslie is talking about here. All of that said, I was hoping you were going to have really amazing advice, Gin, because [laughs] I want to do this in theory too, but it just doesn't work for me.

Gin Stephens: Well, the thing is that you just have to work with the appetite you have in the body, you have and what feels good to you. Like I said, If I eat too light, then I tend to overeat. So, I have to make sure I eat enough to be not overeating later. I have learned over time. If I just opened up with an avocado or something, then an hour later, I'd be in there ravenous. Wakes up the appetite, but it wasn't satisfied.

Melanie Avalon: The way my meal manifests is, it is volume eating, and it is eating for pretty much the whole time, but it's not high calorie the whole time. So, basically, and Leslie pointed this out or mentioned this, I basically start with a lot of cucumbers and wine. So, it's basically just hydration, and water, and easily digestible fiber. It's not actual lot of calories. Then, I have my meal-meal, which is lots of meat or seafood, and that's my big volume. Then, I usually munch a lot on fruit after for a long time. So, not at all the approach that Leslie trying to get to either for the attempt of trying a meal, and then stopping, and then a meal. I really like what Gin said about the importance of that first meal, if you're doing it, being something that is going to satisfy you in the moment. It's complicated because you don't want it to make you hungrier, but you don't want it to be the entirety of the meal, and then you don't want to eat again.

Gin Stephens: Well, for me, if I tend to be hungry or early, then, later I'll have a smaller amount at dinner. Sometimes, well, even though it's a meal for two that Chad and I are eating, let's say, it was a Green Chef meal, meal for two, we might get three meals out of that. I might not need the whole portion because I've already eaten. So, I'll eat a smaller portion. Then Chad, he's a light eater for a man. He always has been. That's why he's never had a weight problem. He is slimmer that probably than he was on our wedding day when he was 20. He's probably slimmer now than it was then. So, he's just really lanky and lean, but he's not a giant eater.

Well, he'll eat what I didn't eat for lunch the next day. Maybe he'll supplement it with a bowl of cereal, if it wasn't enough, but I don't always eat a whole complete meal later. I don't eat the whole portion. It just depends, I might. No, I don't need all that much. I might eat half a piece of meat, for example, instead of a whole piece of meat. Last night, that's what happened. We had a chicken meal, and I didn't eat the whole piece of chicken. I ate half the piece of chicken.

Melanie Avalon: Can I make a really quick chicken comment?

Gin Stephens: Sure.

Melanie Avalon: I think last night, remember you're talking about the rubbery chicken?

Gin Stephens: Did you get woody chicken?

Melanie Avalon: I think so.

Gin Stephens: Was it so gross in your mouth and you're like, “What's wrong with this chicken?”

Melanie Avalon: It felt like rubber.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: It did not taste good. But it didn't taste like it was bad.

Gin Stephens: No, it's not like spoiled. It's just a different consistency. The meat has a different texture.

Melanie Avalon: What did you say causes that?

Gin Stephens: It's called woody breast syndrome.

Melanie Avalon: Is it a bacteria, or something, or is it--?

Gin Stephens: No, I don't think they know. They're like, “Why are these chickens weird?” I don't know. It's been a while since I read about it, but it's just something weird that makes the breast consistency different. It can't be good.

Melanie Avalon: I was eating, and I was like, “This is Gin's chicken.”

Gin Stephens: It probably is. The first time I had it, I had never had it before, and then, all of a sudden, it started happening all the time. It was a meal kit company that I don't use anymore that it was in all of their-- I got to the point I couldn't order chicken from them. But then, it started happening and the other ones, too. Anyway, it wasn't in last night's chicken.

Melanie Avalon: I'm torn now because there's just one brand of chicken I really like. I like Smart Chicken, because they're organic, and I really like the practices. I've researched the practices they do for raising their chicken, and it's usually really good. But if I do, I buy it in bulk because it's fresh. It's not frozen at the store. So, I buy it in bulk, and then, I individually wrap and freeze all of it. This was from three different containers. So, I don't know which container-- I'm like, should I just--

Gin Stephens: No, don't throw it out. You'll know. It also feels different when it's raw. You can tell the texture is different.

Melanie Avalon: It did when I was doing it. But the thing is, now, I guess I'm just lazy, because I'll have to cook them to find out if it's--

Gin Stephens: No, you can tell when it's raw. You don't normally thaw it before you cook it?

Melanie Avalon: I do, but you think I'll be able to tell when it's thawed from frozen?

Gin Stephens: I can. I can tell. Maybe, thaw too and then, you don't have to eat it that day. You can eat it tomorrow, both are good. Always have one ready to go and whatever, thaw two and use them like a day ahead of when you need it or like the next day. I don't know if I'm explaining that well. But I can tell like, if we get two in the day, when we were using the company that I don't use anymore, I would get two chicken breasts and they were different. You could tell, and I'm like, “Oh, that one's not going to be good. I'm not eating that one.” [laughs] I could tell.

Melanie Avalon: When I first bought it, it felt weird. I was like, “I wonder, if this is the rubbery chicken.” I should have just thrown it away then. Because now, it's all in the freezer. I don't know which is which.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you can tell when it's thawed. But definitely you can tell, and it's weird. I can't eat it, so I'm picky now about my chicken. But I love good chicken.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, me too.

Gin Stephens: There was another meal kit company that I tried very briefly. They were out of California, and they're small. They're good for families, and they use some special chicken that really popular in LA. I can't remember the name of it.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, was it Mary’s?

Gin Stephens: No. It's a special breed of chicken. It wasn't a brand of chicken, it was a breed of chicken, like an heirloom breed of chicken and the breasts were tiny like chicken breasts used to be, because chicken breasts are little. I did a lot of reading about chicken like-- Oh, in The Dorito Effect, I think he talks about how chickens have been bred to be so different. The breasts are giant now, and they used to be little. All the great cooks were complaining about how chicken doesn't have a good taste anymore. But I'm like, “God, these were so good, this heirloom chicken. If you can get heirloom chicken with tiny little breasts, the old kind of chicken that hasn't been bred to be giant and weird-- think that's why they have the woody breast. They've been bred to be big. They grow differently. So, anyway, the old kind, it was the best chicken ever. But it tasted different. They didn't have enough options really for us. They didn't have enough choices. So, I didn't continue with them, but it made me really appreciate that heirloom chicken.

Melanie Avalon: Now, I want some chicken.

Gin Stephens: It started with a J. I can't remember the name of it, but it was a breed of chicken. I would eat that all day long. Well, except not all day long. I would eat it all day long in my eating window.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. All in your eating window.

Gin Stephens: I might would eat that all day long. No, I'm kidding.

Melanie Avalon: Back to Leslie's question. I wonder what macros she's doing? I wonder if this would be an easier type of thing to do if you're doing a keto diet?

Gin Stephens: Well, not for me, because keto never made me feel satisfied. That would be a big no. I got to have starchy carbs to feel satisfied. That is just a fact about me. The lentils and the beans, that does it for me. The one with the sweet potato, that one is so good. It has wild rice, sweet potato, and avocado, and you might think that sounds weird because avocado hot, it's so good.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, have I had hot avocado? That does sound really good. My suggestion, I suppose, for this, even though, I have never been able to implement this myself, so take this with a grain of salt. But things I have heard is, she wants to reframe this as fun because it is more of a challenge, the one meal a day. Yes, I think it can be fun. You could see it as a fun experiment of trying to find the meals that work for you for doing this. You could try eating the first meal, and then, I think what's probably really important is putting everything away. Like having the meal in the kitchen, or whatever your living situation is, in the kitchen, finishing the meal, putting the food away, stopping. Rather than keeping it all open and out because then it's more likely that you're just going to keep snacking or keep eating, but being done, and then going and doing something completely different so that part of your brain, that meal association is done. Then, going and doing something else, but having the excitement of knowing that you have your second meal coming, and then going back and having your meal, and reopening the kitchen, and then rinse and repeat. That's the thing that I would recommend.

Then, I would recommend for the in between. I know this is not-- You don't struggle with binge eating. That's not what this is about. But I do recommend reading Dr. Glenn Livingston's book, Never Binge Again. It's a really short read. The Kindle is-- I just learned this, because me and Glenn are really good friends now. We actually talk on the phone a lot, and I didn't realize that the Kindle is actually always free, so you can get it on Amazon. It's a really, really amazing reframe for identifying that voice in your head that wants to eat when you don't need to be eating, or shouldn't be eating, or don't want to eat. So, I think it can be a really helpful practice for making this change if this is a change that you personally want to try to strive for. What it'll help you do is it'll help you in that in between the two meals, identify that voice in your head, that's like, “I want to keep eating,” because I'm assuming that's going to be the challenge of it. And how to adequately engage with that so that it's just not a problem. I would suggest reading that book. It's really short, and it's funny.

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

Gin Stephens: Yes, we have a question from Tish, and the subject is "CryoToning follow-up." By the way, I don't think I have any cryo places here in Augusta at all. I think I got zero. I could be wrong. Anyway, if someone knows one in Augusta, that'd be interesting. I can't believe I'm asking that. [laughs] I've always said I would never do it. I would never do it, but I've got a little FOMO. I hate to be cold. I like to be hot.

Melanie Avalon: Are you in Columbia County?

Gin Stephens: I'm not in Columbia County. I am in Richmond County. Is there one in Columbia County?

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: Oh, wait.

Melanie Avalon: Here's Cryo Care, Augusta, Georgia. The top 10 cryotherapies in Augusta, Georgia.

Gin Stephens: Oh, there is?

Melanie Avalon: Okay. You can go to Cryo Care.

Gin Stephens: Where's that?

Melanie Avalon: Ronald Reagan Drive.

Gin Stephens: That's Evans. Evans is where I used to teach.

Melanie Avalon: Why is it saying Cryo Care, Augusta, Georgia?

Gin Stephens: Like Atlanta, it has all the suburbs. Evans is a suburb of Augusta.

Melanie Avalon: I'll be searching while you read it.

Gin Stephens: Okay. [laughs] I'm not driving to Evans for cryotherapy. I just want to tell you that. [laughs] I don't like to drive to Evans for any-- It's so funny. It a whole different world. When you live in the city of Augusta, the city limits, you'll your small radius of where you go. We're not a big city at all, but I'm like, “I can only go these places.” [laughs] Do you drive to Evans for my massage therapists?

Melanie Avalon: Gin, it is women owned.

Gin Stephens: Well, okay, but--

Melanie Avalon: It has an oxygen bar and a sauna. But you have a sauna.

Gin Stephens: Okay. I have a sauna. But yeah, I only drive to Evans for my massage therapist and that is all.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, great. When you go for your massage, you can get some cryo. They're open from 10 to 7.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. Don't count on that. We'll see. All right, back to Tish’s question. She said, "I've been listening since fall of 2019, and have listened to every episode," and she has a smiley emoji. "Love, love, love the podcast. Really keeps me motivated and reinforces my fasting way of life. I've been one meal a day with a two- to four-hour window since November of 2019 and have lost around 50 pounds. In this last episode, you discussed CryoToning as a potential treatment for collagen replacement/sagging skin. I'm so interested in this topic, but really having a hard time finding the best home device to purchase.

I was wondering, Melanie, if you would really take a deep dive on this topic or did you already, and I missed it? I read your fat cell blog, but I would like more CryoToning specifically, since you said in the latest IF podcast, so, you thought this method might be the best. I am 54 and trying to live till I am 120. I went through menopause when I was 36 naturally, but it wasn't till I lost the 50 pounds that I noticed my skin changed significantly. I Joovv. I have the four-panel full body unit every day. I only eat ButcherBox meats in my clean whole food organic diet. I take P3-OM, MassZymes, Magnesium Breakthrough every day, and I only use Beautycounter products on my skin. I'm doing everything I can to live a cleanish life." Can't wait for this book. Yay. That was me. "I would appreciate your feedback/input. Thanks, and much love to you both, Tish."

Melanie Avalon: All right, Tish, wonderful question. I will put a link in the show notes to that blog that she mentioned. I did write a really extensive blog post about the science of fat cells and traditional methods to reduce them, and by traditional methods like liposuction, things like that. I did not have CryoToning in it at the moment. So, I'm going to add CryoToning to it. By the time this comes out, it should be there. That said, there are not home methods for this.

Gin Stephens: I was just going to say, I don't think there's a home method but-- [giggles]

Melanie Avalon: There are on Amazon. Please, this is not the type of thing that you want to be doing at home at all. At all. They have CryoToning and CryoSlimming. CryoSlimming is the one that's supposed to actually kill flat cells. CryoToning is just for collagen and sagging skin. But they use a combination of therapies. They use certain frequencies and heat and cold. For the CryoSlimming, it literally ruptures the fat cells, and then your body naturally excretes the fat cells to your lymph system. It also does some of the stuff that CryoToning does, and CryoToning helps tighten the skin and increase collagen production. I've been doing it on certain areas and seeing remarkable results.

Even the girl who does it to me, she's really wonderful, but she's very intense and very blunt. When I first went to her, she was like, “Why are you doing this?” She's like, “I don't want to do this on you because you don't really have much to address with it,” which I'm very grateful for, and I just want to make it clear that I'm very aware of this. But we've been doing it so much and she agrees with me. She's like,” Oh, this actually has made a really big difference.” I think it's really great, basically, regardless of where you're at. If you have a lot of things that you want to address with the skin tightening and the collagen production, you'll definitely see a result. But then also, if it's just fine tuning, and tweaking, and something that it just seems that diet and exercise aren't quite addressing, I think it can be that great final thing that is actually effective. I wouldn't be saying this if I hadn't personally experienced the benefits. That said, to answer your question, you can't do it at home. I'm sorry. You have to find a place that does it.

Gin Stephens: So, the one you're doing is called what?

Melanie Avalon: I've been doing CryoSlimming and CryoToning. Cryoskin is the company. And then they have the two options, CryoTone and CryoSlim. Basically, they say that it works with your body's natural systems to produce slimming and toning effects. Noninvasive sessions result in slimmer, toned bodies and the elimination of fine lines and wrinkles. They use thermoelectric cooling to perform cryolipolysis which is the freezing of fat, which causes cell death of subcutaneous fat tissue without damage to the overlying skin. That's the CryoSlim. Then, the CryoTone uses cold temperatures to diminish the appearance of cellulite, tones the area, and improves skin elasticity by accelerating the biochemical reaction. Stimulation of collagen production occurs to rejuvenate and smooth skin while tightening muscles. It uses cold, heat, and massage. So, okay.

Gin Stephens: I will say that, if it was available in Augusta, I would be willing to try it. But I'm still skeptic, which you've heard me say before. But I would be willing to try it. But now that I'm officially 52 having had my birthday.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yes. Gin had her birthday. Happy late birthday. I did. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Yep. 52, that sounds bizarre to me. I can't believe I'm 52. But my skin really did change over the past year after menopause. It's surprising.

Melanie Avalon: Do you have your plant?

Gin Stephens: I do have my plant. Thank you, Melanie, sent me a plant.

Melanie Avalon: We have matching plants. I have that plant too.

Gin Stephens: I used to have one of those plants in my other house, and then, it died when we moved over here. I don't know why it died, but it died. But I've had it in the exact same place that we used to have the other one-

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yay.

Gin Stephens: -that died. It looks really cute there. So, hopefully it won't die.

Melanie Avalon: Is it a dollar tree?

Gin Stephens: Yep, or money tree. It's called a money tree.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, money tree. Money tree.

Gin Stephens: Yep. Will came over yesterday. He was painting, he was like, “I'm going to paint this plant.” So, he painted it.

Melanie Avalon: He painted the plant?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, he painted a picture of the plant. He didn't literally paint on the plant.

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] Firstly, you have a big plant now?

Gin Stephens: No. He painted a picture of the plant. Yes, yes.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I’m so excited. That makes me happy. Happy late birthday.

Gin Stephens: Thank you. Thank you.

Melanie Avalon: So, hopefully, the answers your question, Tish. Hopefully, you can find a practitioner by you. I think we have one really short question we can answer really quick.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: Question from Paul, "Is infused water breaking the fast?" Paul says, "Hi, ladies. Your podcast keeps my IF going. Thanks so much. I've been doing 16:8 for two months. I don't get any weight loss but I love that I can skip my breakfast. Life is much simpler and the fasting window actually feels great. I can handle more stress and I have less mental fatigue. Quick question. I find that drinking infused water during the fasting window helps reduce my hunger. I'm not talking about sweet fruits, but lemon, lime, cucumber, celery, mint, spinach, and ginger. Are they okay to drink? Thanks, Paul."

Gin Stephens: The answer is, no, Paul. They're not. I'm sorry. They are food flavors. We don't want to send any food cues from flavor to our body during the fast. You mentioned you've been doing 16:8 for two months, you're not losing any weight. I would start fasting without the infused water. You really shouldn't be getting hungry. It makes me think you're not fat adapted yet. Honestly, the infused water could be preventing that. Because if you're like starving, and it's just trying to get to lunch, and you're hungry, and you can't even get 16 hours without feeling so hungry that you need infused water, that lets me know you're not really getting the benefits from the fasted state. So, plain water, don't add lemon, don't add lime, don't add anything to it that tastes like food. Plain. No flavor, just water.

I know that sounds counterintuitive, but if it were me, I would try to have a slightly longer fast just till your body gets fat adapted. You've got to break through to get to the other side. Maybe try an 18-hour window for a little while. You see how that goes. Clean fast, plain water, black coffee, plain tea only. No flavors, fast clean, try 18 hours, I bet you'll find your hunger, boom, goes away. Then, also, if you're trying to get weight loss, maybe, you're not, maybe you just feel great, and that's your goal. Chad does a 16:8, never wanted to lose weight. He just feels better. But he also doesn't get hungry during the fast because he only drinks black coffee and plain water. So, try that.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. I knew you would answer that.

Gin Stephens: Absolutely. I knew what I would say. [laughs] I love when people are like, “I was listening to the podcast and I already knew how you would answer it.” Yeah, because I'm pretty consistent with my answer. So are you. We should probably have listeners try to answer it. That would be fun. Guess the answer. How do you think general answer this question?

Melanie Avalon: We could come up with some fun thing for our-- what episode is this? [crosstalk] 300th episode.

Gin Stephens: That'll be-- before you know it, it'll be 300. That's crazy. We've been doing this for a long time, and we've never missed a week airing one.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Right, right, right, right. Yeah, most podcasts have breaks, and time off, and best of. Not us.

Melanie Avalon: That's crazy. We've reflected on this before, but there have been times where we haven't recorded a certain week, but we pretty much talk almost every single week for how many years? Since 2017?

Gin Stephens: 2017, over four years, because we started in April or the first one came out May?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Four years? Wow. That's crazy. Well, it's been a lovely time. [laughs] For listeners if you'd like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com, and you can submit questions there. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode226. You can get all of the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.comstuffwelike. You can follow us on Instagram. I'm @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens, and we're also @ifpodcasts on Instagram. So, this has been absolutely wonderful. Anything from you Gin before we go?

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it. You can also follow me on Instagram as @cleanishgin. I haven't done anything with it yet. It’s pretty boring. [laughs] One day, there might be something there, besides my cat. I just had to put some pictures in, Instagram made me. They’re like, "You've got to put in some pictures," and I just thought put something-- you've already seen them. It's my cat and my chairs. Anyway, follow us on Instagram.

Melanie Avalon: Well, this has been absolutely wonderful, and I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right, 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. The music was composed by Leland Cox. See you next week.

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