Podcast Episode #60: Omega 6 Fats, Quitting Caffeine, Hypoglycemia, Sardines & More
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1. Omega 6 in sunflower butter [9:47]
2. Help me to love sardines! [19:26]
3. Hypoglycemia & food changes [23:05]
4. How/when to eat fermented foods – and do I REALLY need FCLO? [32:03]
5. Cold Turkey Headaches & quitting coffee: strategies and side effects? [43:30]
6. Eating intuitively and intermittent fasting [54:51]
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LIZ WOLFE: Hey everyone, I’m Liz Wolfe, nutritional therapy practitioner and I’m here with Diane Sanfilippo, a certified holistic nutrition consultant and the woman behind Balanced Bites and author of the two time New York Times Bestselling book Practical Paleo. Welcome everyone to episode number 60 of the Balanced Bites podcast.
Remember our disclaimer: the materials and content within this podcast are intended as general information only, and not to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
So I feel like we’ve done this before.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Hello.
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: What’s up? What’s also funny is that my video isn’t working, so I can see Liz, and Liz can’t see me. Feel free to turn that off. I was cracking up watching you just announce the opening, so yeah, we…
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, I crack up doing the opening because I know you’re watching me, cracking up at me doing the opening.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: [laughs] So this is round 2 for us.
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: This week. It’s funny because I listen to Robb’s podcast. I don’t know if you get to listen to it regularly, but it’s just so funny because you listen to someone else’s podcast and they have, you know, technical difficulties, and you’re like, oh man, I know how much that stinks.
LIZ WOLFE: Oh my gosh.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: And no-it must have been a couple of weeks ago, he was talking about the fact that he and Greg like couldn’t figure out what was going on with the Internet connection and then I’m like, and here we are, round 2 recoding this, so we’ll be repeating ourselves.
LIZ WOLFE: The worst part, but it was user error. That’s the worst part because it was totally my fault. [laughs] So it’s like, I have no one to blame for this. I went outside, and I looked for somebody unsuspecting to point the finger at and blame all of my woes on them because I just can’t handle taking responsibility for myself sometimes. Ugh.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Oh, it happens. Whatever.
LIZ WOLFE: Such a bummer.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: So we’ll just-we’ll just repeat ourselves to each other.
LIZ WOLFE: I guess.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: And we’re used to that. We hear each other saying the same things all the time anyway, so…
LIZ WOLFE: Constantly. You never shut up.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: [laughs]
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Thanks, dear.
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, sure. No problem. So Weston A. Price conference coming up. Are you excited?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I am very excited. It’s like we get to just hang out with all our friends. [laughs]
LIZ WOLFE: Just food nerds get together.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, I’m excited because Bill and Hayley are coming on that trip, so…
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: We’re like dipping them into more nerdiness. I think Michelle from Nom Nom Paleo will be there, too…
LIZ WOLFE: Cool.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: because we’re basically in her neck of the woods, and…
LIZ WOLFE: And you know what’s most amazing, what’s going to be the most fun? And this is, Paleo people will understand this, I’m…one of the things I’m most excited about is not…
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I know what you’re excited about.
LIZ WOLFE: No, you don’t even know. Here’s what I’m excited about.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yes, I know.
LIZ WOLFE: I’m excited about the Green Pastures Fermented Cod Liver Oil shot bar.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Oh.
LIZ WOLFE: They’re going to line up with little shot glasses, where you can take shots of all their different types of cod liver oil.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Do you think they’re not going to have…?
LIZ WOLFE: The cinnamon?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Remember, because like the shortage…
LIZ WOLFE: I would imagine that would be the case. They’re probably saving it. Hoarding it for the conference because us Paleo jerks have stolen all of the good cod liver oil from the Weston A. Price people who were totally there first. This is my fourth, er, third or fourth conference, and they’ve been putting this thing on for ten years, and I’m like, you know, thinking that I discovered America again with this whole Weston Price stuff, but they’ve been doing this for a long time.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah.
LIZ WOLFE: A long time.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, it’s really cool because I’ve been hearing about the conference since a couple years ago when I was in nutrition school, and it was just always at the wrong time.
LIZ WOLFE: Mm-hmm.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: And like I was away for a holiday or something was happening over my birthday, who knows what. But yeah, I never…I never got to attend. And yeah, so I’m excited. I’ll take a picture of you eating the sourdough bread.
LIZ WOLFE: Yup. My yearly legitimate fermented sourdough, and it’s kind of appropriate that this should be in Santa Clara, which is near San Francisco, which is the original, right? The original sourdough bread capital of the world, I don’t know.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yes, you are correct.
LIZ WOLFE: So what happens after that? After Weston A. Price, I will be at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs with the First Twenty, which is a nonprofit where I’m on the board of directors. We’ll be doing kind of a health awareness workshop there for regional first responders. I’m really excited about that. Then I’ll be home for a bit. One of my best friends is having a baby, and I’m so excited. It’s going to be the first time I actually visit someone in the hospital, like, like that fresh. Like that’s going to be like a brand fresh baby.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: [laughs]
LIZ WOLFE: I’m guessing I’m going to have to like tone it down a little with the Paleo stuff at the hospital.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Well, they smell different when they first come out.
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs] Oh my god.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: You said brand fresh. I’m thinking there’s like a fresh smell, I don’t know.
LIZ WOLFE: Well, puppies smell different from, I don’t know. Everyone listening right now is like she should never be a mother, ever. Seriously.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: You or me?
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs] Both of us. Just stick to what we know, I think. We’re probably better. Anyway, so after that, at some point during all this travel, I’m pretty much traveling for the next 5 weeks, I will also please God help me also, I will also be putting the finishing touches on my book, Modern Cave Girl, which will be out in the Spring. And I’m feeling, I’m feeling everything that you talked about when you were finishing up your book, Diane. I mean, I’m like, I’m pretty flamed out right now. I have very little left in the tank.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, it’s brutal, and it’s not something that anybody can really understand until they go through it.
LIZ WOLFE: Kind of like having a baby! [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I was totally having a baby. I know. I feel like, I feel like all the fun stuff that we talked about last time, I can’t…I can’t bring it all out this time. I’m sure there’s some listeners who are thrilled to not hear us joke for 20 minutes, but…
LIZ WOLFE: Probably. So what are you doing?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I’ll be in Texas. I am currently in Ft. Worth. I did a Q & A and book signing…well, this past weekend I was in San Diego and Los Angeles, then Dallas and Ft. Worth this week. So those are all done. And then, so we’re recording on Wednesday, the show will go live on Thursday. Thursday evening, I’ll be at CrossFit West Houston in Houston, Texas, and then San Antonio at CrossFit 210 on Friday, and then Saturday morning, 11 o’clock, I’m really excited to go over to CrossFit Central. I stopped in before there just to work out, but doing a book signing, Q & A at CrossFit Central. And what else? That’s really…that’s pretty much it. Just kind of been traveling around doing that, debating whether or not to pop home to New Jersey in between…in between these trips because I’m heading out to San Francisco just a couple of days after that for Weston Price, meet up with you guys, but I’m a little concerned about airplanes being underwater. I don’t know what’s happening. You’re in New Jersey?
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Is the entire airport under water?
LIZ WOLFE: As far as I’ve…you’ve seen all those pictures of hoaxes that people are photoshopping together, like half of New York underwater. And I know there are some places that really, really had a tough time during Hurricane whatever it was, and we came out relatively unscathed. We’ve been out of power for 3 days, which is a bummer, but it’s nothing compared to what other folks are going through, so in no way am I trivializing that, but there have been some hoax photos out there, kind of making things look like crazy like Armageddon type crazy, and it’s definitely…it’s a tough situation and we, our thoughts go out to everybody that’s affected by it, but I do not think that Philadelphia International Airport is underwater at this time.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I saw pictures, I don’t know if it was JFK or LaGuardia, but yeah, so we’ll see. Maybe I’ll go right to San Francisco, and not stop home. Don’t know.
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, I forget that you don’t fly out of the same airport I do usually. Bummer!
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Bummer.
LIZ WOLFE: Anywho. Okay.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I think that’s pretty much it. The only other announcement I wanted to make is that we are going to have featured on the blog post for this podcast a special discount code for Kasandrinos Olive Oil because I know a lot of people have tried it before. You’ve probably heard about it on the podcast if you listen back a bunch of episodes, we talked to Tony Kasandrinos, who…it’s his company and he imports olive oil from Greece and he is…I’m actually staying with him right now. He’s a good friend of mine. And yeah, he’s like, you want to run a promotion? We’ll go ahead and do that, so hop on over to the blog post on www.balancedbites.com for this episode, which is episode number 60, and we’ll have a coupon code featured on the blog post that you guys can use over at www.kasandrinos.com for some awesome olive oil.
LIZ WOLFE: Highly recommended. Okay, so let’s jump into questions. First question on omega-6 in sunflower seed butter.
Ari says: “I was surprised to hear Liz endorse sunflower seed butter on the most recent podcast. According the USDA food database, it has 1.56g/Tbsp. of Omega-6 fats. Following Chris Kresser’s guidelines of getting a max. of 4% of calories from Omega-6 fats, just 3 tablespoons of sunflower seed butter gives you half of that allowance. I don’t know what your stance is on the issue of eating Omega-6 fats, so would you please address this in a future podcast?”
So I’m just going to jump right into this, and I need to first make the point that I do not endorse anything. This goes back to the disclaimer. This is general information, and whatever issue, large or small, whether it be coming off of medication or eating sunbutter, is not for me to officially endorse, so hopefully nobody out there felt like they had to go do something that they were uncomfortable doing. I am not paid by sunbutter to recommend their product. That said, this touches on an important issue that is commonly misunderstood, and that’s the idea that omega-6 in any and all forms is always bad. Now, modern standard American diets that are rich in linoleic acid, an omega-6 from corn, factory farmed meat and even too much wheat are definitely problematic from an omega-3 to 6 ratio perspective because that heavy hit of omega-6 does end up in that kind of framework. It outcompetes the anti-inflammatory pathways that omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids thrive. And so when we’re talking about omega-3/omega-6, we’re talking about polyunsaturated fatty acids. The important thing is to keep those pathways in balance, the omega-6 and the omega-3 pathway, and it’s totally appropriate to have omega-6 in the diet. Whether that’s from some nuts or some avocado or some egg yolks, and also it’s not only Chris Kresser that has said that a relatively small percentage of calories should come from polyunsaturated fats. We have a pretty low need for those in the diet. That’s a fact that the Weston A. Price Foundation and Chris Masterjohn have been aware of for many years. I learned it through those channels.
Polyunsaturates need not be a large volume of our fats because they are fragile, they do occur in small proportions in nature, and we need other fats like saturated fats to keep us healthy at the cellular level. And what we see…we have all these debates about, you know, how many carbohydrates the Kitavans ate vs. how many carbohydrates the Eskimos ate, but what traditional cultures have in common more than anything, a common thread between healthy traditional cultures from all over the world, is taking in a small percentage of calories from polyunsaturates, and those polyunsaturates were not isolated as they are, for example, as in fish oil, in corn oil, in canola oil, and that type of stuff, as they are in kind of a standard American diet. Those fats, they came from whole food sources. So the modern diet, where we’re encouraged to eat corn and canola and tons of polyunsaturated fats because they’re supposedly healthy, that is absolutely hugely problematic. It throws our systemic balance absolutely off the rocker, but with regards to omega-6 in general, as people think of it as just a driver of inflammation, that’s not entirely true in all circumstances. We need inflammation as well as anti-inflammation.
So omega-6 is not inherently bad. And especially against the backdrop of a well planned Paleo diet that is generally low in overall polyunsaturated fats as a percentage of calories, and with regards to eating nuts, we do legitimately need to watch our intake of nuts because first they can be mechanically irritating to the gut when they’re not well chewed, and second, people who are eating nothing but “Paleo” bread or “Paleo” baked goods made of almond flour all day every day, they are eating a huge percentage of their calories from nuts, and thereby getting a lot of polyunsaturates, probably more than they need. And that’s not me, you know, advising against or, I don’t know, reverse endorsing almond flour baked goods. There’s a time and a place for them. Like I’ll make Bill and Hayley’s pumpkin chiffon pie for Thanksgiving, and it has an amazing nut flour crust, but there’s a level of balance we need to reach when we look at these things, and not fall into that really dogmatic trap of thinking absolutely no omega-6 is somehow better.
And in my CrossFit cert, we talked extensively about the U-shaped curve, and this can apply to so many things where too little is not good and way too much isn’t good either. You have to hit that balance inside those two extremes, and really, that’s just nature. That’s just life, you know? No exercise is not good, but way too much exercise we’ve seen many times is not good either. So in conclusion, the way I use sunbutter is not to bake a cake with it, frost the cake with it, and wash it down with a glass of ice cold sunbutter. I mean, hopefully, that’s not what I said in the last podcast. I don’t remember saying that, but a tablespoon or two of sunbutter here and there is not going to hurt anybody. It’s just not. There may be people out there that disagree with me, but I’m sticking to my guns on that one.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I’m with you. I think…I think one of the issues that people get kind of tripped up on is, you know, when we talk about omega-3/omega-6 and reducing omega-6 intake. I think the really big issue is reducing the intake of isolated and oxidized polyunsaturated fats. It’s not so much, oh, you’re eating tons of avocado, and that’s going to be inflammatory to your body because avocados, people forget, often, that they’re really rich in omega-6, and you know, we’re always looking at nuts and seeds, but then let’s look at what we’re doing with the nuts and seeds. We’re processing them, sometimes we’re refining them, then sometimes we’re baking them. And you know, it’s not the same as even, you know, a whole nut, for example, you know that’s maybe raw, or even a whole nut that’s roasted vs. something that’s ground into flour or into a nut butter. The propensity or the possibility for oxidation to happen once you start refining those things, whether it’s into something like a nut flour or a nut butter or further into an oil. You know, it just starts to increase. So it’s always a matter of what form is it in. Is it whole or is it, you know, refined or processed, and I think, you know, we do take one step away from the whole food when we start looking at nut butters and nut flours, but the reality is, it’s not the same as a refined seed oil that, you know, you and I both agree, we presume is damaged just in processing, let alone in the cooking methods that we’re using with them.
And so I think when this stuff kind of came out, perhaps originally in the Paleo Diet book talking about omega-3/6 balance and people got a little tripped up over like which foods were rich in omega-6 to avoid. I think that’s not so much the issue as it is, you know, here’s one of the real reasons why fast food is unhealthy. It’s not just it’s fatty, it’s what kind of fat is it, and has it been fried in old forms, you know. Two week old fryer oil, like I always ask the question at our seminars, you know, if anyone has worked at a restaurant, how often did they change the fryer oil? And people just laugh. They don’t even have an answer because that stuff’s been sitting there for so long and that’s really the bigger problem than a tablespoon of nut butter. So if somebody’s really concerned with this, and they’re like, whoa, she said to eat, you know, sunbutter and it’s high in omega-6, you know, I would be more concerned about how often you’re dining out than how often you grab a spoonful of sunbutter. That’s really going to be a lot bigger of a hit of a damaged polyunsaturated fat than something that’s much closer to like a whole food form. End rant.
LIZ WOLFE: End rant. All right, by the way, I love the word “propensity.” It’s one of my favorites. Right next to “interrobang,” “hyperbole,” and “histrionic.” Some of my faves. All right, next question.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: “Conflated” is one of your favorites, lately.
LIZ WOLFE: That’s a great one. I have been using that one a lot.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I don’t know if people all really know what it means, and I worry about that sometimes.
LIZ WOLFE: This is not 1982. We can all Google words on our smartphones.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: They’re all going to be like Googling now. Anyway.
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs] All right, next one. “Help me to love…” Just because you don’t know a word doesn’t mean everybody else isn’t going to know the word.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I know the word.
LIZ WOLFE: You know the word.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I just watch their faces, and they’re like, what did she say?
LIZ WOLFE: Probably because I pronounce it wrong or use it wrong. They’re like, nice try, girl. You totally used that word wrong. All right, next question. “Help me to love sardines.”
Christina says: “I just can’t like them.
Sardines. My heart wants to love them but I just can’t. My husband (who is not even close to Paleo) eats them a couple of times a month and each time he does, I ask him for a few bites in hopes that I would eventually develop a taste for them. I have had them in Olive Oil, Hot Sauce, and some kind of strange mustard but No bueno.
Any tips on possible pairings or ideas on how to get them down without making my husband laugh at my facial expressions?”
I think this is pretty hilarious, Diane. I can’t say I totally disagree with Christina. I actually kind of find myself kind of holding my nose, like almost not breathing when I eat those little buggers straight from the tin. And I eat them totally plain. I eat them packed in water. So because, you know, learning from Anthony with his olive oil from Kasandrinos Imports, you know, stuff can be packed in what they say is olive oil, but you don’t always necessarily know where it comes from, so just for me, I’ll eat them plain or buy them plain packed in water, and I’ll put my own dressing on them. It’s definitely a fishy situation. It’s absolutely…I think holding your breath while you’re eating is probably not the way we encourage people to eat and get that full experience of testing and taking in their food, probably not the best way to prime the digestive process, but we do what we can.
And at one point I did go through the bother to really dress them up. I do lettuce boats with lots of salsa and guacamole, and lots of cumin sprinkled over the top, which really does cut the taste, but at this point, I think it might be time for Christina to, like you always say, Diane, tell herself a new story. Perhaps she can repeat the phrase “I love sardines” to herself, and maybe that would shift the mindset. You know, she can wake up in the morning and repeat her affirmation, and that can be one of them. So no. Fake it until you make it. But all things considered, you know, it’s a good, healthy whole food. I get excited enough about all the good stuff in there. The CoQ10 and the DHA and all that that I like eating them, despite the fact that the taste isn’t my favorite and in the end, it’s not the worst thing in the world to make your husband laugh. As my friend Lynn Lee would say, it’s better than a stick in the eye. So…
DIANE SANFILIPPO: You’re an old lady.
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs] I know.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I love it. The two of us. All right, well, I think I don’t actually eat a lot of sardines personally. I eat more things like herring and salmon and I actually like almost burned salmon this morning broiling it. That was fun. But I, you know, I think if you try it a million different ways and you just can’t…can’t get to the point where you love them, find something else. There’s, you know, not just one food out there that contains all of these nutrients that we’re looking for, so if you’re really trying to get the omega-3, there plenty of other fatty, cold-water fish to try, and you know, I just wouldn’t like beat yourself over it for too long. You know? Keep trying and if it’s not the one for you, try something else. No big deal.
LIZ WOLFE: There are other fish in the sea.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: There are.
LIZ WOLFE: High five via Skype!
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I can totally see you, and it’s creepy…
LIZ WOLFE: I know.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: But awesome.
LIZ WOLFE: It’s weird.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I don’t know why my video’s not working. Sorry.
LIZ WOLFE: All right, next question. Are we doing the coffee one next? No, this one.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Oh, we totally didn’t do that.
LIZ WOLFE: Did we skip that one? We’ll get to that one.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Okay, we’ll move it.
LIZ WOLFE: Still in there. All right. “Hypoglycemia on Paleo.”
Tinna says: “I’m on day 3 of eating paleo and for the past two days, I’ve experienced hypoglycemia symptoms twice each day (shaky, light-headed, sweats). I ate a couple of medjool dates to help me feel better. Also for what it’s worth, I am jet lagged from an overseas vacation. I’m a “self-diagnosed” hypoglycemic. I used to eat 300ish calorie meals 5x a day before starting Paleo. Now I am eating 3 hearty meals a day. Are the hypoglycemic symptoms normal due to a transition period into the paleo lifestyle? What can I do to prevent the symptoms or help them without the sugar in the medjool dates?”
What do you think?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: All right, well, I think it is a pretty expected outcome when people make these changes. You know, we’re assuming she was eating probably a pretty grain-rich, carb-rich diet before, so if she drastically cut her carb intake, you know, this is a response you can expect. And I think it sounds pretty, you know, pretty in line as what we hear from people who are experiencing carb flu, and you know, this is really common with people who are going through the 21 Day Sugar Detox. You know, typically, days…it really does typically hit around day 3. Usually the first couple of days, people have still have a good amount of carbohydrates stores in the body because it does take us usually a couple of days to burn through them if we’re not replenishing them, but you know, days 3 through 7 or 10ish, maybe 3 through 14-It just really depends on your system-can feel a bit painful and you know, there’s a few different ways to kind of approach that. I think one of the issues is that often the low blood sugar that we’re feeling when it’s “self-diagnosed” hypoglycemia. You know, it’s the result of this higher carb meal that we’ve eaten, and the low blood sugar that follows that after. It may or may not be a legitimate condition where, you know, a doctor would have diagnosed it, where she doesn’t have enough glucagon, which is, you know, possibly the clinical issue with the hypoglycemic situation. It could just be this reaction to the food. So I honestly wouldn’t really battle it with something like dates because you’re just feeding into the sugar, despite the fact that it’s, you know, a whole unrefined sugar. It’s a whole food. I’d rather see her try something like starchy carbohydrates with a meal, and, you know, if she had pulled back…say she was eating 300 grams of carbs a day before, and now she’s reduced it to under 100, if she basically just went to like starchy or non-starchy vegetables, sorry, like broccoli and spinach and leafy greens, that’s a pretty drastic cut, and she may or may not need to have done that. So…or may not to have done that. Oh, can’t even talk right now. [laughs]
LIZ WOLFE: Right?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Can you fix this?
LIZ WOLFE: No. This is all going in, baby. All going in.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: We’re live. We are usually live. Okay. What really happened was I woken up early this morning to drive my awesome friend to his military base because I need to borrow his car. Okay. I’m going to resume what I was talking about.
LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I hope everybody is still with me. So basically, you know, if you’re trying to chase a low blood sugar feeling with sugar, it’s really not the right approach. It can feel comfortable at the time, but I would rather see you plan meals with something like a half a cup of sweet potato, just to get a little bit more carbohydrate in, and you know, thereafter, just kind of see how you’re doing. You don’t need to go totally low, low carb on a Paleo diet for it to be successful and to get the healing effects.
So alternatively, you could just stick it out and not, you know, not increase that carb intake. Just understand that you’re going to need a little bit more protein and fat. Make sure you’re drinking enough water. Make sure you’re sleeping, so it’s one of the things that she pointed out. That she…oh, is this what she pointed out? Yeah, she’s jet-lagged, so like, absolutely a lack of sleep will make you crave carbohydrates. It absolutely reduces your insulin sensitivity, so if you’re trying to make sure that everything you’re eating, you know, feels right, being jet-lagged just kind of throws everything off. I mean, we’ve been there many times traveling back and forth across the country. So sometimes just knowing that that low blood sugar feeling is exacerbated by jet lag and just kind of not, quite literally not feeding into it can be helpful. Trying to think what else I wanted to, some other notes I wanted to give her.
I think…I don’t know. I think that’s really it. I think the only other thing is that maybe just giving yourself some time to allow your body to believe you. You know, we get this sort of insulin response to food and it’s often simply reactive to what we’ve eaten, but it’s often also sort of pre-programmed, and you know, your body is really used to getting certain things all the time, and so when you change that substrate that you’re putting in, your body may or may not actually believe that that’s what’s going to continue to happen, and I know that that sounds a little bit hokey, but I think, Liz, you’ve got a name for this mechanism, so maybe that will help clarify for some people why it takes some of us a lot longer to adapt, and some…some people it only takes a few days.
LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, I mean, whatever we do consistently, we condition our bodies to cater our physiology for that. So with any kind of change, there’s usually a period of adjustment. So your body’s just attempting to create energy and achieve balance in everything that it does, especially in prioritizing blood sugar management. So what you deal with here is this averaging mechanism of insulin that’s attempting to clear an expected input of glucose with an amount of insulin that was at one time accurate and appropriate. And that’s kind of where, when you have cut that stimulus down or cut that input down, and your body is still expecting the same thing, it’s actually really like clearing the heck out of all the glucose in the bloodstream and really just responding as if that old input was what it was, what it was actually getting when you’re actually, you know, offering a whole new set of nutritional input. So I mean, it makes sense, and I think you also make a really interesting point about the jetlag situation and all of that. Any time you’re stressed, I mean, we talk about in our workshops how stress will mess with a woman’s cycle and that it can actually delay ovulation, right? So stress can inhibit hormones. It can mess with the transition from estrogen to progesterone, and it can also inhibit the hormone insulin. Insulin is a hormone, and it can do the same thing. So when you’re stressed, you’re jetlagged, or whatever it is you’re going through, you are managing life changes, managing extra exercise, managing a new diet change, or jetlag or whatever it is.
This actually makes sense that insulin release would be inhibited from an evolutionary perspective. So stress hormones are meant to enable us to deal with the primitive emergency, right? The fight or flight situation. And when the body perceives that this is what’s going on, whatever that stressor actually is, when the body perceives it, insulin’s action is blunted to allow for that easily recruitable energy from glucose to deal with the situation. So the point is, overall stress level, overall nutritional support, just making sure that you’re approaching your new dietary habits from a balanced perspective, you know, and making the tweaks that Diane suggested should really help. But also I think context really helps as well. Just to kind of know how insulin functions and why. That’s about all I had to say about that. You should definitely buy Practical Paleo and learn all about being nutrient sufficient and how to meal plan for your goals. [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: You’re funny.
LIZ WOLFE: All right, next one. “How and when to eat fermented foods-and do I really need fermented cod liver oil?”
Amy says: “Hi Ladies! First, let me add myself to the list of people who heap praise and thanks at your feet. You offer so much wonderful information and make this stuff entirely accessible and less intimidating to so many people. Now, on to my questions. I have two of them, both related to ‘superfoods.'” Diane, one day we’re going to have a question that’s like, you two are awful, and I don’t like you, and…[laughs] And I’m going to read it and it’s going to make me sad. But what Amy just said made me really, really happy, so thanks for saying that, Amy.
All right, I don’t know why I said that, but when people say such nice things, there’s got to be…one of these days, something’s going to come in where somebody’s like, just not being so nice. Anyway…all right, first question.
“What is the best way to eat homemade fermented vegetables? I’ve been making my own sauerkraut, kimchi, beets, etc., for a while now and I love them. I’ve heard conflicting information on whether it’s best to eat these alone/on an empty stomach vs. with a meal. Obviously, traditional food cultures eat them with meals (Koreans eat kimchi with *everything,* Europeans eating kraut or other fermented/pickled veg with things like charcuterie to “cut the richness” of the fat, etc. Not that I think anyone needs to cut the richness of the fat!) Both ways are probably fine, but I’m just wondering if there’s a preferred way. (I’m asking specifically in regard to helping constipation. Don’t know if eating ferments with meals is better for helping digestion of that specific meal, and maybe eating them separately is better for overall re-population of gut flora…)” And she has a second question, but do you want to jump in on that one first, Diane?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, sure. You know, considering the fact that we, this is take 2, I think like my short answer is I don’t have a specific, you know, this is the end all be all way to be taking in probiotics, either food or supplement form. I think that generally, I would recommend that people eat them with other foods, just because that seems like the natural sort of traditional way to do things as she mentioned about kimchi specifically. But I think that some sort of like you know, tinkering and n=1, like keep some notes and see what you’re experiencing. I think, especially if you’re dealing with constipation, you know, I’ve said this before where generally, if somebody comes to me who’s constipated, that’s sort of my first order of business. Like, all right, that would be the first thing that I’m troubleshooting, so if eating the stuff with your meals is helping that, then go with it. If you’re not finding that it’s helpful, go ahead and separate it out from the meal. I wouldn’t…I wouldn’t do it too far apart from a meal. I mean, I think that you do want to get some digestive enzymes flowing, and kind of making sure that that’s all working together, but I think you really just have to test it out and see, you know, see how your body responds.
A couple of other notes on the timing of probiotics…generally any type of supplement, you know, the first way I would recommend taking most of them would be right with or after a meal because you are priming your body for digestion, so at that point, any capsules or anything you need to sort of digest this around the supplements, that will kind of work better than if you just pop some pills. You know, pop them down. But I think that the other considerations might be if you happen to be taking antibiotics or if you are using some sort of natural form of antibiotic, like what we talked about I think last week with the oil of oregano, unless that was the week before. I was taking my oil of oregano supplement while I was kind of beating off this cold here, and just kind of like making sure it was balanced out and timed far enough apart from the probiotic foods that I’m eating. So that’s really what I would recommend in terms of other timing considerations. I think all that being said, I was kind of digging around and looking for some research on it. I wasn’t really finding anything in research on probiotics about, you know, the timing, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. I did find some information from Dr. Mercola that he tends to recommend that if you’re doing it in a supplement form to take it before breakfast and allow 15 to 20 minutes before you eat. Again, that’s in a supplement form, though. I think if it’s food, you know, just eat it with your food, see how it goes.
I do think the possibility is there for the probiotics in that food to just potentially help some digestion of that meal. I think possibly more so just the sour taste and sour smell may help to stimulate stomach acid, so that may be a bit more in the way of digestion support than even just the probiotics in the meal.
LIZ WOLFE: Neat. All right, next part of her question.
“I was taking Green Pasture’s Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil a while back and really liked it. (Seemed to do good things for my mood/outlook. I tend to be a gloomy Gus but I definitely noticed a big improvement in that.) The thing is, it is quite the pricey item and while I know it’s worth the $$, I find it hard to justify the expense. Do you think I would get a similar benefit from taking regular Cod Liver Oil along with a “hit” of good, pastured butter? I’m thinking the CLO would cover vitamins A & D and the butter would give me the K2. (Obviously making *certain* the butter is from grass-fed cows is key, since that’s where the K2 comes from. The butter oil is more concentrated, of course, but I have to think straight butter would still have some benefit.) I realize I might not get as much bang for the buck from this, but it’s difficult to justify upwards of $50 for one bottle of the “real deal,” plus about $10 in shipping.
Thanks so much! Diane, congratulations on the success of your tour-de-force…um, I mean book! It is not only a work of art but a GREAT source of easily understandable info across such a wide range of conditions. Be proud of yourself — what a fantastic accomplishment. (And I’m sure I’ll be saying this to Liz next year when her book comes out!)”
I was saying in the last one, Diane, and I still think it’s funny, so I’m going to say it again. That I’m hoping to make a couple of bestseller lists myself, like you, like maybe the Pawnee Herald or [laughs] the Ottawa Journal…Sentinel-Journal or something. [laughs] Somebody will pick it up. Somebody will.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Somebody else…Don’t be too hard on yourself there.
LIZ WOLFE: Womp womp. All right, so here’s my answer to this one. Unfortunately, there’s just really no substitute for the Blue Ice Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil blend from Green Pastures. I wish there were more options in the marketplace, but there’s just not. There’s nobody producing it through fermentation the way they are. Some brands do claim to be fermented. I don’t buy it because almost every single one of those brands has an ingredients label, and when you see an ingredients label with something besides fermented cod liver oil, you’ll probably know what I’m talking about when you see it. When you see an ingredients label with multiple ingredients, that means there were multiple ingredients put into one product, and what I mean by that is, if you see cod liver oil and vitamin D and vitamin E, those 3 things were put into the product separately, whereas the cod liver oil/butter oil blend contains vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E…and vitamin K2 and all the other good stuff naturally within one ingredient. Does that make sense? So when you see something with an ingredients label, especially cod liver oil that says, for example, vitamin D or cholecalciferol, or whatever, it means that ingredient was added back after the fact. The fact that vitamin D is very heat sensitive leads me to believe that pretty much every other cod liver oil on the market, even those that contain vitamin D, were actually heat processed, which destroyed the natural vitamin D content, and then it had to be added back after the fact, so that’s my biggest beef with all of the other cod liver oils and what makes me feel like they’re not really worth taking. You can’t really count on vitamin D content being appropriate from a nutrient, a natural nutrient synergy perspective, in those products.
So what I would actually do is to just take a much smaller dose of the blend if that’s going to be the difference between you buying it or not buying it because the K2 is very highly concentrated. You can get it from other sources, but you won’t get it in the same concentrations and it probably won’t offer the same benefit because the butter oil that they use for the Blue Ice Cod Liver Oil is derived from the butterfat from cows grazing on rapidly growing green grass during the growing season. That’s when K2 is the most rich. It’s not just in butterfat year-round necessarily at those same levels. So I don’t know. I would just stretch out the dose a little bit more rather than stop buying it entirely. If you get sick, especially having it on hand, taking a little bit of a bigger dose is what I tend to do, and then beyond that, get some liver, get some sun exposure. Liver right now is not trendy enough to be overly expensive, so you can grate it into your meatballs and kind of hide it that way. Get a good dose of it every week. Get some of that good grass-fed butter because it is good for other things besides just vitamin A, vitamin K2. Liver will be good for B vitamins and folate, so you’ll be getting a whole, you know, extra suite of nutrients as well if you approach it that way. And I really think that’s the best way to get the bang for your buck without sacrificing too much. I know it’s a difficult expense to justify. Trust me, we live very modestly by necessity, but honestly, all of that is really because food is so frigging cheap in the United States. It always has been, and most of us, myself included, have never really had to pony up for the sake of our health like we’re starting to do now that we have these amazing dietary concepts of Paleo/Primal/Weston A. Price dietary concepts that lead us to kind of put our money where our mouth is.
I mean, if you think about it, even with regards to insurance, and this is a totally different topic, but I’m going to go for it anyway, I’ve gotten in the past $500 prescriptions for $9, and our insurance isn’t even that good. I mean, so if you look at like the cod liver oil/butter oil blend, and if that was covered by insurance, who knows, you could be paying like 10 cents a bottle, and then you get used to thinking that’s how much something costs. But we just have no concept of what things actually cost in this country and that’s the fault of like agricultural subsidies and cheap food, and I blame the USDA. I blame them for everything. That’s it.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: All righty, well, yeah, I don’t really have…I don’t think I have anything else to add on that one.
LIZ WOLFE: All righty. Next question. “Cold Turkey Headaches. Help!”
Christie says: “Hi. I love your book, and your podcast!! You really inspire me to be a nutrient seeker, and focus on health rather than aesthetics. Thank you! I have a quick question about how to mitigate withdrawal symptoms after cutting back on caffeine and sugar. My husband (who eats paleo at home, but whatever he likes at work) has a dependency on coffee-flavored milk for breakfast. He has a bottle every day, and if he doesn’t he gets headaches. However, he has the next 3 weeks off work, and has agreed to try eating a more nutritious breakfast if I cook for him (despite claiming he finds food off-putting first thing in the morning). I’m really excited to try to help him move towards healthier habits, but I’m worried that if he goes cold turkey on the coffee milk, he will get bad headaches, and either give up or self-medicate (with Coke, probably).” And that’s Coke with a capital C, not with a little c, so we’re talking Coca-Cola. “I was wondering if you had any ideas on how I might be able to wean him off the stuff slowly enough that he won’t suffer too much. Should I allow him to continue drinking the milk but slowly reduce the amount? Or could I try to provide caffeine in a more paleo-friendly manner (paleo cookies made with cocoa, perhaps)? Are there any supplements that would help? I should also have mentioned that he has an odd distaste for hot drinks, so regular coffee with heavy cream is not an option…Thanks so much for listening! Cheers, Christie.”
I love that nutrient seeker is becoming a term. I’m totally just taking credit for that one. We both can take credit for it. It’s definitely my favorite mindset. It helps me let go of old food neuroses and concerns about what I was eating and why and I just love just looking for nutrients, like figuring out where those nutrients are, whether that’s in sardines or grass-fed beef or whatever, just enjoying the process of feeding myself well. I just think that’s awesome. So anyway, Diane, what are your thoughts on this one?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: So actually my thoughts on this are different now than they were the last time we went over this.
LIZ WOLFE: An hour ago? [laughs]
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Hmm?
LIZ WOLFE: An hour ago?
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, so we really tackled this question the first time around as sort of a caffeine addiction. I was actually trying to look up the ingredients in this coffee-flavored milk, and I don’t really think this guy probably has mostly a caffeine addiction. I think what he’s probably addicted to is sugar more than anything else. I can’t find the ingredients. If you can find them, if you can even look while I’m kind of talking about some of this other stuff. The one brand that I found is called TruMoo, and I’m really have trouble tracking down the ingredients on this coffee-flavored one. But my bet here is that he’s probably addicted to the sugar in it and probably addicted to some of the components of the dairy, like casomorphins, which are proteins in dairy which we know act upon some of our like pleasure receptors in the brain, just really want to make us to eat these foods, and that’s true with really any dairy. But when you combine any other sort of physiological response, like the response to the sugar with something that’s already addictive, you know, and giving us that pleasure response, I mean, you’re kind of done. It’s why a donut is just the most amazing thing when you’re talking about grains and sugar because you’re getting all that stuff at once. So I think that could be what’s going on with him. But the withdrawal here could really be more a matter of something similar to like a sugar detox, so what we were talking about with our low blood sugar person a few questions ago.
So that being said, her questions, how she might be able to wean him off, you know, I’m going to address it in terms of this flavored milk now, and then I’m going to talk about some caffeine withdrawal and caffeine issues and following that up, but…
LIZ WOLFE: Hey Diane? I can’t find any other coffee milk, but I’m thinking and looking at the way she spelled flavored. She spelled it F-L-A-V-O-U-R-E-D, so I’m wondering if this is one of our friends from across the pond.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, perhaps.
LIZ WOLFE: So maybe they have something we don’t. But go ahead.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: All right, well, if anyone can find us a link on those ingredients, but I think, you know, this is the same with caffeine. With sugar, I usually have people go for the sugar detox where you kind of yank the stuff out and days usually 3 through, like we said, 10 or 14ish tend to be pretty painful. It’s going to be pretty similar with sugar and with caffeine actually, and so, you know, really having him prepared to know that he might not feel great, but on the other side of it, he’ll feel a lot better. You could either have him try and go cold turkey, really managing headaches with water and like naps, you know, just take a nap. Go to sleep. Same thing with caffeine, but I think it really depends on which approach he’s more comfortable with. Just kind of like titrating down where maybe he does half as much and then a quarter as much, kind of going from there. And you know, try to provide caffeine in a more Paleo friendly manner. I don’t think that’s going to solve the problem here. I really don’t think it’s the caffeine. I think if he’s getting any kind of caffeine buzz from it, I think it’s probably more of a placebo effect than anything else. I just…I’m doubting. I don’t know. I’m doubting there’s much coffee-legitimate real coffee in this coffee-flavored milk. So yeah. That’s kind of what I’m thinking about that.
Odd distaste for hot drinks. Coffee with heavy cream’s not an option. Yeah. I don’t know. Do you have any other thoughts on that specifically before I kind of address this whole coffee addiction/caffeine withdrawal question or topic?
LIZ WOLFE: I’ll just say really fast that I think becoming nutrient sufficient will help enable long term, just control, from, you know, you don’t want him self-medicating or giving up, so I do think maybe it would be worth it at this point, like you were saying, Diane, just kind of gradually stepping back from the bad stuff, and maybe even doing like a really, really high quality nutrient supplement, just for a short-term. I would like the cod liver oil/butter oil blend. Maybe a really high quality multi, like the one from www.drrons.com. There’s very few multis that I recommend to very few people, but it might be worth looking at that to bring some semblance of balance back to the system in hopes it will provide some kind of backdoor appetite control and enough balance to push greater change. That’s about all I’ve got. So yeah, go ahead.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: So the other issue, you know, if someone is trying to quit coffee and deal with caffeine withdrawal, and I, you know, kind of started a rant on this last time we recorded this, and I’ve definitely talked about it before, since I’ve put myself through quitting coffee. Of course, once we all go through this, we end up proselytizing and I’m trying my best to kind of manage that approach because I don’t think it’s every person to needs to go through this whole yanking themselves off of coffee. But as I mentioned the withdrawal, it can be pretty painful, and if you’re not ready for it, it can be even worse. So I think kind of preparing yourself and making sure that you know that these things could happen, but also being ready with water and, you know, adequate food so that it’s not, in fact, low blood sugar or that you’re just hungry, that you’re feeling sick. Making sure that you’re sleeping enough, so that you’re not craving more sugar and more caffeine.
And you know, I really do encourage people to question their intake level of coffee. I had a guy at the Q & A last night who was kind of talking about how he uses caffeine to modulate, you know, his energy levels because he’s working really long hours and he’s working like 7 days in a row, and then he has 7 days off, or something to that effect. And he’s really into this whole like biohacking with supplements and all these other things, and I just kind of said to him, like first of all, the level of energy he was radiating…I was like, you’re putting a lot of energy right now, and he was like at a book signing event. He wasn’t even working. So I was like I think that when you…
LIZ WOLFE: He wasn’t even at a Zumba class.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: are either supplementing or trying to add stimulants or supplement your way out of poor lifestyle habits and poor arrangements that we’ve made for how we live, and even how we work, potentially, I think it’s dangerous. And I think that it warrants questioning of that lifestyle. I think even those who have, you know, jobs that are shift work, that maybe pay really well and they need that for now, I think it’s worth just considering making a change or making a plan to change because if you’re finding that you keep having to prop yourself up either on caffeine or you keep having to try and support your body in adrenal fatigue recovery with different supplements continuously. You know, there’s something you’re doing that’s not right by your body. You know?
I talked about kind of taking a bunch of adrenal supplements after I wrote the book and, you know, I don’t take them anymore. I took them for a couple of months to just kind of help myself get through and make sure I was sleeping and training and eating well and all of that, so that same kind of thing applies when you’re dealing with quitting caffeine and it’s not something that you feel the positive effects of necessarily in just a couple of days or a few weeks. I think it can take a lot longer than that, and so, you know, it’s the same way we kind of approach any, you know, food elimination where we tell people, you know what? That food will always be there. That coffee-flavored milk will be there. Why don’t you give yourself the benefit of, you know, becoming not addicted to it anymore, getting rid of that addiction and just see how your body feels? I tried coffee again last weekend. Had about a half a cup, just to have it, not that I was going to start drinking it again regularly, and I was pretty indifferent. I was like, all right. It doesn’t taste any better than I thought. It doesn’t…you know, it didn’t make me feel like sad that I’m not drinking it every day, and I think when you can get to a healthy place where you can either take it or leave it, that’s a good sign. You know? I think if you wake up thinking about it. If you can’t function until you have it. If you tell people don’t talk to me until I’ve had my coffee…I’m being totally serious, you know? It’s kind of funny when people say that, but the reality is, if you can’t function without a stimulant, you know you’re doing something in your diet and lifestyle that just really needs to be addressed. So I’ll step down off that soapbox for now, and I absolutely know that, you know, not every person needs to go through this, but I think that most people need to be a lot more honest with themselves about their intake and kind of how it makes them feel. Yeah.
LIZ WOLFE: Okie dokie. Next question: “Eating intuitively and intermittent fasting”
Lauren says: “Hey Liz and Diane! So I’m having this MAJOR dilemma with meal timing vs. intuitive eating while working an 8 hour day. I feel like intuitively I tend to eat light during the day and then a nice size dinner at night. I have tried IF but sometimes going too long without a meal throws me off and I end up overeating at night. The weekends aren’t so bad because I can kind of follow my own rhythm but when I work it’s much harder because I have to maintain energy all day until 6 pm. I have definitely experimented around and based my conclusion solely on energy levels. I have eaten every 3 hours starting right after my early morning workout and realized I could NEVER get full and was constantly thinking about my next meal. It was horrible.
Then I went to eating 3 larger meals plus one dessert. Breakfast was before work and a big salad was lunch then my big normal dinner and dessert. (all meals protein, fat and veggies only) I felt sooo tired as soon as I ate lunch but by eating breakfast early I was hungry by 1 or 2. I ate more fat like avocado, eggs, salmon and olive/coconut oil thinking that would hold me over till dinner and possibly minimize my appetite at night… didn’t work at all and I still ate the same amount at night, just felt worse for eating too much food. By the way, I’m 5’1, 120. I also have struggled with hormonal imbalance, PCOS, insulin resistance and constant weight fluctuations.
Now I’ve been sort of fasting in the morning till about 10 or 11 and eating a light snack in the afternoon and come to find out I’m not overly hungry at night and eat the exact same amount as I did with the big lunch. It’s hard to determine how long this will last because, of course, my hunger changes daily and the problem is packing the right amount of food to satisfy my hunger without eating too much just because it’s there. I’m currently eating very little to no sugar which has helped with blood sugar throughout the day. Just curious what your thoughts are and if either of you deal with this while traveling and not really living by “your time.” Also any suggestions for super light lunch or snack… jerky maybe? Or do I douse myself with coconut oil? Thanks so much and LOVE your podcast. “
I just want to make the point before I turn it over to you, Diane, that when I travel personally, and this is probably just because I’m not as used to it as you are, but especially when I have those high stress fight or flight days, like when I’m on an airplane, when we give workshops. Those things both make me completely separate from my body. I basically exit my body when I have to speak publically because it really does make me so nervous, and my hunger absolutely changes in those circumstances. And I do allow myself to make adjustments for that, so I can appreciate the fact that she’s aware of the ebb and flow of hunger and that it’s situational and a lot of it depends on what your experiences are at the time, and especially those with jobs that are very, not so much unpredictable, but you know, not everyone has a job where you go to the office and you kind of expect the same things day in and day out. So a lot of folks have different inputs going on all the time that will change how their hunger functions and how that works, so I can definitely sympathize.
But with the mention of PCOS and all that good stuff, it brings me to suggesting that she goes and checks out Stefani Ruper’s PCOS guide at www.paleoforwomen.com. Stefani Ruper is also one of the first that helped confirm for me fairly recently that IF for women may not necessarily be the best thing. So kind of like, if it’s working for you, okay, but if it’s not working for you, it’s not a huge surprise. So I really think beyond it just not working necessarily perfectly from a biological harmony standpoint, it can also kind of border on that territory of restriction and then overeating, that cycle that seems to happen a little bit too often with women more so than men.
What else? I mean, I don’t think it’s the worst thing not to eat until like 10 AM. There are some schools of thought that suggest the body is actually still kind of resetting and repairing up until 10 AM, so when you’re well balanced and eating well, and feeling good overall with your health and your ability to intuit what you’re doing and why, which is not necessarily the category that it sounds like this particular question falls into. It sounds like there’s some other stuff going on. But if that’s the case, I see no problem with waiting to eat at times. However, when people are dealing with severe hunger dysregulation, digestive problems, a new transition to a different way of eating, we definitely, as practitioners, look at that individually. And I mean, most often, to just get a good change started, people do need to stack up and eat breakfast, and get their hunger well managed by doing that to start with. Get their blood sugar under control, their bodily stress leveled out, but that’s not everyone. So, yeah, I think that’s pretty much all I wanted to rant about. I’d probably err on the side of whatever gives the greatest feeling of mental balance and self-trust, but it’s always a balancing act when it comes to this type of thing, so…anyway, Diane, I’ll hand it over to you.
DIANE SANFILIPPO: I mean, I don’t have a ton to say, but I think she didn’t really say much about how she’s sleeping, which I think would be really interesting to find out how she’s sleeping because I think that can really affect, you know, how hungry you are, how that hunger will fluctuate throughout the day. So I’d be really curious about that. I think with regards to the intermittent fasting or you know, punctuated eating, like which is it? Is it, you know, is she perhaps skipping meals if she doesn’t eat? Or is she just kind of punctuating the feeding window where she does get more food in? I know she said she’ll tend to do like a bigger meal at the end of the day. And I just like for people to make sure they’re not missing nutrition. Like that’s kind of the way I always frame it. Like make sure you’re always getting in enough food. You know, there are limits to how much at a time we can…we can really metabolize, and I think that they can vary. I would never say that, you know, a person can only metabolize x number of calories or whatever it is. I don’t think it’s that specific of a number, but there is a point at which, you know, we can overload our system and really, you know, we do need to limit our meals to some degree in terms of their size when we’re trying to just make sure we’re getting in something that we can metabolize at a normal rate.
But that being said, you know, I like the idea of her spreading her meals more throughout the day. I think that when appetite is dysregulated because of stress, I think it’s important to recognize that that’s what’s causing it and try and take action to mitigate that. So, you know, your example of the seminars…I think when I first started teaching, maybe the first 6 months or so, I absolutely experienced the same thing. I didn’t eat all day and back a long time ago when I used to do some other kind of work and would just be stressed all day, I really didn’t eat much during the day, and I think that it’s fine if that’s happening intermittently. I think it’s a normal response from that stress, but I think when it becomes a regular part of your life, as I mentioning before, we need to find ways to manage the lifestyle. Manage the fact that it’s stressful, and if that means doing some meditation and you know, if she can take a break before she eats in the middle of the day and kind of get herself into that rest and digest mode before she’s eating, that might help. I think that perhaps getting her breakfast to be a bit bigger and putting some carbs in that meal. You know, without the carbs for breakfast, maybe it is making her more sluggish, but making sure it’s also really dense in protein and fats so that it’s really holding her, a super satiating meal. I think that, you know, while she’s doing the salad for breakfast and that’s great to get the veggies in, it just may not be like the most weighty meal that I’d like her to have for breakfast.
So you know, on the go, she could do something more like hardboiled eggs and sweet potato, or even bake like a crestless quiche with sweet potato mixed in and even some, you know, homemade sausage kind of mixed in, baked all together, so she’s got a really dense meal that she can use kind of on the go, and that was one of her other questions, just about you know a light lunch or snack, but I think you could even just cut something like that up, make it portable. Let’s see, so I think that’s really it. I would just also maybe recommend that she keeps notes about what each meal looks like and what kind of macronutrients balance she might have, and you know, just kind of keeping…if you’ve eaten a couple of eggs and how much veggies and how do you feel throughout the day? And just look at that. You know? Take a look back. If you forgot to eat more dense carbs and you felt less energetic? Then awesome, you can add more carbs in and see how you feel. See how that works for you. Maybe it’s protein and fat you need to modulate a little bit more, and you know, I don’t generally have people paying that much attention to it, but if this is the level where she’s at, where she’s feeling like she just can’t use her own intuition, I think that keeping those notes can be really helpful.
LIZ WOLFE: Very good. All right, well we are over an hour, so I guess we’ll close it out. That’s all we have for today. Remember, if you’re enjoying the podcast, head over to iTunes and leave us a review. We would greatly appreciate it. We will be back next week with more of your questions. Until then, you can find Diane at www.balancedbites.com. You can also submit your podcast questions at www.balancedbites.com, and you can find me, Liz, at www.cavegirleats.com or www.lizwolfentp.com. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next week.
Diane & Liz