Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser

Podcast Episode #321: Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser

Diane Sanfilippo Featured, Paleo and Primal, Podcast Episodes Leave a Comment

Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris KresserTopics

  1. News and updates from Diane [1:32]
  2. Introducing our guest, Chris Kresser [4:28]
  3. Something new that Chris is into [8:56]
  4. Chris's new book, Unconventional Medicine [14:04]
  5. The healthcare system is destined to fail [21:05]
  6. The cost of functional medicine [26:19]
  7. Finding someone to help [32:16]
  8. The role of the health coach [39:59]
  9. How to get into functional medicine [49:18]
  10. What's next for Chris [59:53]

Subscribe to DianeSanfilippo.com

The episodes are also available in iTunes, Spotify & Stitcher.

Join our Healthy for the Holidays Facebook Group

Grab Chris's new book, Unconventional Medicine – http://amzn.to/2y9E1N4 

 Show sponsors:
NTA | Podcast Sponsor | Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo





Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser

Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe | Balanced Bites Podcast | Unconventional Medicine with Chris Kresser

You’re listening to the Balanced Bites podcast episode 321.

Diane Sanfilippo: Welcome to the Balanced Bites podcast. I’m Diane; a certified nutrition consultant, and the New York Times bestselling author of Practical Paleo and The 21-Day Sugar Detox. And the upcoming book, The 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide, due out on January 2. I live in San Francisco with my husband and fur kids.

I’m the co-creator of the Balanced Bites Master Class, with my podcast partner in crime, Liz. And together we’ve been bringing you this award-winning podcast for more than 6 years. We’re here to share our take on modern paleo living, answer your questions, and chat with leading health and wellness experts. Enjoy this week’s episode, and submit your questions at http://blog.balancedbites.com or watch the Balanced Bites podcast Instagram account for our weekly calls for questions. You can ask us anything in the comments.

Remember our disclaimer: The materials and content within this podcast are intended as general information only, and are not to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Before we get started, let’s hear from one of our sponsors.

Diane Sanfilippo: Today’s podcast is sponsored by Vital Choice seafood and organics. Purveyor of premium sustainably sourced seafood and a certified B corporation. Vital choice offers a wide range of fish, shellfish, humanely raised meat, protein rich bone broths, and paleo friendly snacks like organic dark chocolate, super antioxidant trail mix, and bison jerky. As the grilling season continues, www.vitalchoice.com is your source for real food.

1. News and updates from Diane [1:32]

Diane Sanfilippo: Alright, just a couple of updates from me this week, since I am on my own without Liz. A couple of changes coming to the 21-Day Sugar Detox program. If you have participated in it before, if you’ve been thinking about doing it, just keep your eyes and ears peeled. If you have some of the original books, just stay tuned. I’ve got some updates to give you. And if you're ordering the books, no problem. The current books that are in circulation will remain as is. Perhaps eventually there will be an update to them. But anything that is going to be updated we will go ahead and distribute to you guys at no charge. So make sure that you are kind of paying attention and let’s say in a couple of months you want to do the 21-Day Sugar Detox.

Of course, the new book is coming out January 2nd. That’s the 21-Day Sugar Detox Daily Guide. And it is a fully detailed day by day of exactly what to expect. Some notes and tips from me. A full meal plan that’s completely detailed in terms of what you're going to prep each day, hold aside, remake into something else. Extremely detailed to make your life easier. Not to overwhelm you. And we’ve had about 30 different people testing it, and they’ve said it’s been amazing because it’s just so easy when you don’t have to second guess if you have everything you need. We lay it all out for you.

So I’m super excited about that. But stay tuned here for info on that. And I’ve got some amazing preorder bonuses and a Facebook group that I would love for you guys to check out. It’s called Healthy for The Holidays. And I’m basically just walking you guys through how to get through November and December, leading up to and through the holidays. Because this isn’t necessarily the best time of the year to do a 21-Day Sugar Detox. If you want to, you are welcome to. We do run groups. Our coaches run groups. If you haven’t looked for a coach before, head over to www.21DaySugarDetox.com/coaches. We have hundreds of them. And they can definitely help you. But you're of course welcome to do it all on your own as well.

But check out the group. We’ll link to it in the show notes, and also link to it through www.21DaySugarDetox.com. But it’s basically just a place to come talk to people about ways to manage what’s going on with treats everywhere and drinks everywhere and all kinds of holiday food that we want to just be balanced as we get through that. It’s not about never having a bite, or never having a treat or a drink. It’s about having a mindset that’s kind of cool, calm and collected as you get through that. So join me over there. I’m going to be going live in that group to kind of support you guys and talk about different topics. I can’t wait to see you guys in there. It’s called Healthy for The Holidays, so definitely check that out.

For those of you who are into safer skincare, I’m also going to be doing some really fun giveaways. So stay tuned for that over on my Facebook page, as well as in my Beautycounter email list. You can always sign up for that, as well.

2. Introducing our guest, Chris Kresser [4:28]

Diane Sanfilippo: Alright, so today I’m super excited. We have Chris Kresser back on the show. Before I begin and get into my interview with Chris, let me give you a little quick background just in case you're not familiar with who he is. And if you're not, you can definitely go back and hear episode number 8, which {laughs} is into the depths of the archives. But I’ll tell you guys, it is probably still one of our most popular episodes. It was such a great conversation about digestion. And then episode 120 where we talked about his previous book. But here we go.

Chris Kresser is a globally recognized leader in the fields of ancestral health, paleo nutrition, and functional and integrative nutrition. He is the creator of ChrisKresser.com, one of the top 25 natural health websites in the world, and the author of the New York Times’ bestseller, The Paleo Cure.

Chris has been studying, practicing, and teaching alternative medicine for more than 15 years. He completed his undergraduate work at UC Berkley, and studied Chinese and integrative medicine at the acupuncture and integrative medicine college, also in Berkeley. He was trained with world renowned healers and educators in a variety of disciplines throughout the US, Thailand, and Indonesia.

Chris teaches and practices functional medicine, a personalized approach to health care that recognizes the biological uniqueness of each patient. In contrast to conventional care, which is almost entirely focused on suppressing symptoms, functional medicine eliminates symptoms by addressing the underlying cause of a problem. It is an evidence based field of health care that views the body as an interconnected whole, and recognizes the importance of these connections and health and disease.

Chris lives just over the bridge from me. He lives over in Berkeley, California with his wife and daughter. Alright Chris, welcome back to the show for, I don’t know how many times you’ve been on before. Many. And actually one of our episodes together was probably one of the most downloaded. So congratulations.

Chris Kresser: Oh, cool. Happy to hear that. I think it’s number 3, but it’s been a while. So it’s good to be back.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, I think it might be. Yeah, it’s nice to chat with you. And you guys don’t know, but I can actually see Chris on a video, even though we don’t have a video show. And it’s nice to see him, because we connected way back in the day before.

Chris Kresser: Way back.

Diane Sanfilippo: Before all of this.

Chris Kresser: I was actually telling someone the other day that you, I think, were pretty instrumental in my whole, whatever you want to call it. Whatever happened with me. Because I met you at an APEC event, right?

Diane Sanfilippo: No. We met for tea, because we were going to talk about; I think I had been teaching seminars at CrossFit gyms and you had taught one, maybe, in your area.

Chris Kresser: Right.

Diane Sanfilippo: And I was like; well, why don’t I tell you about what I’m teaching, and you tell me about what you're teaching. And you had on some pants a friend made. I will never forget.

Chris Kresser: {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: It was so Berkley. I was like, this guy is hilarious.

Chris Kresser: You're like; I’m from Jersey, and this guy is from Berkley.

Diane Sanfilippo: But I remember, I introduced you to Robb.

Chris Kresser: How did we even connect?

Diane Sanfilippo: I had some personal trainer friends here in the city who knew of you, just through the functional medicine work that you were doing.

Chris Kresser: Ok, right.

Diane Sanfilippo: Somebody who needed help with sleep or something. And then showed me your blog. And it was like, at that time, everything was swirling with holistic stuff, and Chek practitioner stuff, and you were talking about it, and everyone’s like, “Oh we’re finding people who talk about the same things we do.” You know. Raw milk, and don’t eat junk. It was just this convergence of; literally it was like there was one other like-minded person here. Let me talk to them.

Chris Kresser: Right, right.

Diane Sanfilippo: And I remember introducing you to Robb, but; of course I pat myself on the back for that, but that’s one second.

Chris Kresser: So I wanted to pat you on the back for it, because Robb, of course, and I have become fantastic friends. And that podcast that I did with him was really kind of my introduction into the whole scene. Because at that time, I didn’t even really know about paleo and this whole world. I just kind of figured it out on my own through my own experimentation. So anyway. We go way back.

Diane Sanfilippo: We do. And you know, the same happened for me, though. Introducing me to Liz; it was Bill and Hayley from Primal Palate. They had connected with her. And I had seen her name somewhere; but now Liz and I, I mean she’s one of my best friends more than 6 years we’ve done this show together. And legit relationship. Same for you guys. So I think that’s cool.

Chris Kresser: Really cool.

Diane Sanfilippo: Well, you're welcome, but you’ve definitely {laughs} taken that on your own.

Chris Kresser: Thank you. Thank you, thank you.

3. Something new that Chris is into [8:56]

Diane Sanfilippo: So before we get into talking about your brand new book Unconventional Medicine, which I dig the cover design of this book. I’d just like to throw that out there.

Chris Kresser: Thank you. It was hard won. We had to fire the first designer, but the second one worked out.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} That happens. That happens.

Chris Kresser: Yep.

Diane Sanfilippo: But why don’t we just; I mean we’ve already broken the ice. But why don’t we break the ice for our listeners a little bit. Just talk about a new thing that you're into lately; maybe something you haven’t talked about much before. Something you’re trying, or even something that you’ve talked about on your own podcast that maybe our listeners would like to hear.

Chris Kresser: Cool. I’m really; I’ve been experimenting a lot with diet lately. Which people might not think that’s new {laughs} because I talk about that a lot. But actually for several years, I just kind of ate the same way. I mean, I found something that worked for me and I just stuck with it, and didn’t really feel the need to do much experimentation. Lately, the last several months some of my old symptoms that I used to have had started to come back. I think it was mostly a product of just to the last several years have been intense. I’ve written a couple of books, and launched a new training program and I’m still seeing patients and have a blog and now I have another blog, The Kresser Institute, and a podcast and a 6-year-old daughter. {laughs}

I do a good job of taking care of myself, as you know. That’s really important to me. But I think at a certain level there’s just, the level of intensity of work periods. Even though they’re not overwhelmingly long, just caught up with me. So I decided to go back into mad scientist mode.

First I did a 30-day keto experiment, and the first two weeks I felt great and then felt like a train wreck the second two weeks. Which is not uncommon for someone with my body type and activity level.

Diane Sanfilippo: I was going to say. I will practitionerize you and tell you I would have never have told you to go keto {laughs}.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. So, it’s something I hadn’t done for a long time so I just wanted to see how it worked. Now I’ve been doing something that’s more like cyclical keto. And not even really; very mild ketosis when I’m in it. For me, I go into it pretty easily. So I can eat 60, 70 grams even sometimes of carbohydrates and almost maybe 50 grams. And then I’ll just eat my normal diet for a while, and then I’ll go back and do that. And I’ve been fasting a little bit; which you know I can’t do too much because you’ve seen in person. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} We don’t want to lose you.

Chris Kresser: No, we don’t want me to blow away with a strong wind. But actually, it feels great to fast. I really love it. I wish I could fast for longer. Because the clarity of focus, and just feeling of peace in my body. I love food prep; you and I share that love. But also it’s nice to take a break and not have to think about what to eat, or cook, or clean up. I really appreciate that about fasting. It’s like a combination of fasting, occasional periods of ketosis, and then bigger carb refeeds when I’m not in ketosis. And I’m having fun with that. I like it.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} We are trying some of the same stuff with the intermittent fasting. My husband is kind of; not exactly the same build as you, but he has that tendency. The long lean body type. So he’s, over the last however many years he’s been with me, put on muscle and has definitely eaten more because I feed him so much {laughs}.

Chris Kresser: You're feeding him.

Diane Sanfilippo: But, we’re both trying currently a 16-hour fast, 8-hour feeding window and just see how we do with that. And I definitely want to tap into a little bit of testing on a 24-hour thing like that. Because I do love to cook and eat, but I would like to do some other things.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: With my time. And I’m just curious to see.

Chris Kresser: It’s true. I mean, three times a day. It’s time consuming, for sure.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And we cook when we eat most of the time.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. It’s not like we’re going out for an egg McMuffin at McDonald’s for a meal, you know.

Diane Sanfilippo: And we don’t even do a ton of leftovers. We’re here, and I think it’s a procrastination tool for me, too. “Oh, I have to cook lunch, so I can’t possible keep working.”

Chris Kresser: {laughs} Well that’s good, then. It gives you a break. That is actually an interesting thing about fasting that I’ve noticed. The natural breaks from meals; I have to find other ways to take those breaks, because then otherwise;

Diane Sanfilippo: And maybe not work.

Chris Kresser: Yeah, exactly.

Diane Sanfilippo: Interesting. I’m sure we’ll have some more folks to interview on the topic of fasting coming up. Dr. Jason Fung’s interview was probably the most downloaded ever episode on fasting.

Chris Kresser: Cool.

Diane Sanfilippo: I think it’s just a topic people are really interested in these days.

Chris Kresser: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: So if have folks that you want to send me to interview, definitely let me know. We’ll kind stay alert to that, and see what’s going on.

Chris Kresser: Yeah, will do.

Diane Sanfilippo: But cool.

Chris Kresser: Great.

4. Chris’s new book, Unconventional Medicine [14:04]

Diane Sanfilippo: Alright, so let’s dive in and talk about your new book. Because this is what’s really going to be on everyone’s minds. It’s just released this week. And I would love for you to just kind of give us a basic rundown of what is the new book, what’s it about, and who’s it for.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. So, the new book came about. It was actually not planned. After I did my first book, I really enjoyed it. I had a great experience, but I didn’t have any thoughts of writing another book so soon. And I guess it’s not that soon, compared to the level at which some people churn out books.

But this was really felt like a kind of call to action. Something that needed to be done. We are dying from chronic disease. 7 of 10 deaths an hour caused by chronic disease; 86% of health care dollars. The recent health care debate in the news highlighted some of the challenges that we’re facing, but it didn’t really go far enough. The reality is, that chronic disease doesn’t just threaten us as individuals. It’s actually threatening the very survival of our country. Because the US is projected to be bankrupt by 2035 if healthcare expenditures continue to grow. We have 100 million people now with diabetes and prediabetes. The CDC just released; I don’t know if you saw this, Diane, a new statistic saying 40% of US adults are obese. Yeah. 40%.

Diane Sanfilippo: Goosebumps.

Chris Kresser: It’s crazy. 4 out of 10 US adults. And I think it was something like 20% of adolescents, which is even sadder. And the healthcare debate; it’s true, yes. We need to talk about insurance, and how to pay for care, and who should get insurance and all of that. That’s important. But what was totally missed was the fact that no matter what decisions are made there, there is no system of paying for health care that will work as long as chronic disease continues to expand at the rate that it’s going now. We have one in two Americans with chronic disease now. One in four have multiple chronic diseases. And 30% almost of kids have a chronic disease.

We just can’t deal with that. There’s no economic or financial political system that can fund that level of care. It just can’t. The only hope we have is to actually prevent and reverse chronic disease before it happens. That’s it. Nothing else will work. We cannot just supply Band-Aids.

So the goal of this book is to raise awareness of the challenge of chronic disease, and then to present a plan for how to reinvent healthcare so we can actually address it.

Diane Sanfilippo: I kind of had a little weird moment when you were talking about just how many people are struggling with chronic disease or diagnosed, thinking about how there’s nothing else in the world that would be so broken that half of it, whatever it is.

Chris Kresser: Right.

Diane Sanfilippo: Half of all; ok, a home having something wrong with it. Yes, you can keep fixing that. It’s not a living thing. But if half of all cars were constantly broken, we would never have enough mechanics, and we would never have a system to fix it. But here we are and it’s our health. It’s just this; I don’t know. I just felt a little floored with that; half.

Chris Kresser: Yeah, that’s how you should feel. But the thing that’s interesting about it; and I’m so glad you said that. It’s such a great point. But we’re kind of inoculated against it. It’s so common that we now think it’s normal. I know we’ve probably talked about this before; but there’s a huge difference between what’s common and what’s normal. It’s common now to see; obesity is common. Diabetes is common. But those are absolutely abnormal states for human beings. And we know this from looking at traditional cultures who are still following their traditional diet and lifestyle.

And I think people don’t actually recognize how messed up it is that one in two people have a chronic disease, and one in four has multiple chronic diseases. It’s not right, and we can’t sustain society with this.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And I think our listeners; most of our listeners are either like nutrition practitioners or they have a chronic disease that they’ve been diagnosed with. So they’re probably sitting in their cars, folding laundry, whatever. And nodding along like; yes, that’s me. And it’s probably more than half of our listeners at this point.

Chris Kresser: Yeah, for sure.

Diane Sanfilippo: Of course, in your listeners too.

Chris Kresser: Everyone knows someone; either they themselves have one. Their partner, their mom, their sister, whatever. There’s nobody that’s untouched by this. And it’s getting so much worse so quickly. That’s the thing. We’re like the frog in the boiling water, right? We don’t realize it. But just think about back in the 60s and 70s even, obesity was still relatively rare then. If you look at a lot of pictures in the 70s, you don’t see so many people that are obese. And it’s really been in the last 50 years that that has skyrocketed.

And then that statistic I said, almost 30% of kids have a chronic disease. That’s up from 13% in 1994. I mean, I had graduated from high school in 1992. So we’re talking about in my lifetime, in my adult life, there’s been a more than doubling of the number of kids with chronic disease. It’s shocking.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m thinking back to Jack Lelanne, and his videos talking to his students about what to eat and how to move. And how long ago that was, and that was probably the beginning of people dealing with a lot of obesity. I feel like that was probably in the 50s or 60s maybe. Anyway, it is staggering. And I think a lot of us are in this world, and we’re like; “We’re so used to it. And we know that there’s a lot of it. And we know that it’s affecting a lot of people.” But those statistics really are staggering.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. Here’s one more.

Diane Sanfilippo: Oh gosh.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. Because this is the one that I think is the most disturbing, really. Today is the first generation of kids that’s expected to live shorter lifespans than their parents. And I mean just think about that for a second. Lifespan has been steadily increasing since we started measuring it in the modern world, with the exception of a few pandemics that temporary blip, then it goes right back up. And as a parent myself of a 6-year-old daughter, it’s just absolutely heartbreaking to consider that on average our kids are not going to live as long as us. We’re moving in the wrong direction. And that’s probably a clearer sign than anything else we’ve said so far that something needs to change, and fast.

5. The healthcare system is destined to fail [21:05]

Diane Sanfilippo: And so you talked a little bit about how this is a problem for the system, because our system really can’t handle what’s happening with our health. I know in the book you talk about three reasons why the healthcare system is destined to fail. Do you want to touch on that briefly for people?

Chris Kresser: Yeah. That’s a great place to go. Because I think it’s important to understand that not only has conventional medicine failed to address chronic disease, yet. It really actually has no hope of addressing chronic disease. At least in its current configuration. And the three reasons for that are number one, there’s a profound mismatch between our genes and our biology and our modern diet and lifestyle. And you talk about that ad nauseum; so do I. So I don’t think we need to spend that much time on it.

But I would just point out that there’s been a lot of hoo-ha about genes and genetics and; yes, can play an important role in predisposing us to disease. But statistics suggest that 85% of the risk of disease boils down to environment and behavior. So that’s really where we need to be focusing our attention, and we’re not.

The second reason is that our medical paradigm is not well suited to tackle chronic disease. In 1900, a little over a century ago, the main reasons people would see a doctor were all acute problems. So it’s like you broke your bone, you got a gallbladder attack, appendicitis, or maybe you had an infection. The top three causes of death then were all acute infectious diseases. Typhoid, pneumonia, tuberculosis. So treatment was pretty straight forward. The doctor would set a bone in a cast; remove the gallbladder or appendix. And then once antibiotics were developed, just prescribe one of those for infection. One doctor, one problem, one treatment. That’s it.

But today, it’s totally different. The landscape has changed dramatically. 7 of the 10 top causes of death, as I mentioned, are chronic rather than acute diseases. And unlike acute problems, chronic diseases are complex. They’re difficult to manage, and they typically last a lifetime. So they don’t lend themselves well to that one doctor, one treatment, one problem methodology. The average patient with chronic diseases sees multiple doctors, actually a different one for every part of the body. {laughs} That’s a weird thing about how our system works. And they require multiple treatments, and those treatments are going to last a lifetime. So our paradigm was set up for one thing, but now we’re dealing with a totally different thing. So it’s like trying to use a hammer to screw in a screw. You kind of can do it, but it’s not going to work, and it’s going to cause a lot of damage.

And then the third reason is that our system doesn’t support the interventions that would have the biggest impact. So if you agree with me on number one and number two, we see that diet and lifestyle change are the biggest drivers. Those are the things that we need to change the most. And we need to shift from a sick care system that suppresses symptoms with drugs, to something that actually addresses the underlying cause of the problem.

But guess what? There’s no way we’re going to be able to do that in a system where the average primary care visit is 8 to 12 minutes. And the average length that a patient gets to talk before a doctor interrupts ins 12 seconds. I think it’s pretty clear that with that kind of system, there’s not enough time to talk about diet. To talk about lifestyle. To give the patient support with a nutritionist, or with a health coach, or someone that can actually hold their hand and help them do what they need to do. There’s barely enough time to say hello and write a prescription in one of those appointments.

And this isn’t the doctor’s fault. There as much victims of the system as the patients are. This is a systemic problem; it goes way beyond any individual doctor or patient. And that was really the impetus for this book. It’s like; I really felt like we need to see this as the systemic problem it is, and address it at the level of like a national emergency.

Back in World War II, they were like; the victory gardens. We all came together because we saw this existential threat to our survival. And I really think it’s at that level, where I know Robb talks about this. Where the Department of Defense has identified chronic disease as an existential threat to our survival as a society. And I think we need to step up and start seeing it that way.

Liz Wolfe: The Balanced Bites podcast is sponsored in part by the Nutritional Therapy Association. The NTA trains and certifies nutritional therapy practitioners and consultants (including me; I’m an NTP), emphasizing bio-individuality and the range of dietary strategies that support wellness. The NTA emphasizes local, whole, properly prepared nutrient dense foods as the key to restoring balance and enhancing the body’s ability to heal. Nutritional therapy practitioners and consultants learn a wide range of tools and techniques to assess and correct nutritional imbalances. To learn lots more about the nutritional therapy program, go to http://www.NutritionalTherapy.com. There are workshop venues in the US, Canada, and Australia, so chances are you’ll be able to find a venue that works for you.

6. The cost of functional medicine [26:19]

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s almost like; I mean the whole system. It’s the same; the system in and of itself is kind of the same as the way that we’re trying to handle things are the same as how we’re trying to handle each person and their disease. We’re trying to do the one for one.

So you know Scott, my husband, is a chiropractor. And for years and through multiple different practices he opened, he took insurance because people come to the door, do you take my insurance? And they don’t want to be there if you don’t. And it was just a huge point of frustration and stress. I didn’t understand this as a patient until I was married to him, or when we were dating or whatever. Where he explained to me; it’s like you give someone a bill. I would never send someone an invoice for $100 and only expect to see $35.

Chris Kresser: Right.

Diane Sanfilippo: I expect to get my $100 if I bill you $100. And when I learned that that’s actually not what happens. The doctors actually don’t; and less so as a chiropractor, because the medical system doesn’t; they’re not interested, for the most part, in alternative treatments until hopefully we go through what’s happening with your book. But you know, an MD even is probably getting nowhere near 100% of what they would bill. So that’s to your point about the time becoming less and less, because they cannot spend that time with you, because they’re not earning any money from that time. So he stopped taking insurance for that reason. It’s all out of pocket. And that’s it. And he’s happier practicing. The patients who come to him understand the value of his time better. And it’s his own stand against the sick care system. But not every doctor has the option of doing that.

Chris Kresser: No.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s financially tough. And I just don’t think that patients know that this is a thing. I don’t think they realize that when they pay their $10, $20 copay, their doctor actually doesn’t fully get paid by the insurance system.

Chris Kresser: Yeah. It’s driving a lot of doctors out of medicine, and we already have a shortage. And that shortage is predicted to get worse. I think the stats I’ve seen were a shortage of 55,000 PCPs, primary care providers, by 2030. Which is not very far away. That’s 13 years away.

There are so many good points there. One of the things I want to address is cost. Because one of the objections that you often hear about functional medicine and this kind of approach that I talk about in the book is that it’s so expensive. And it’s true that right now a lot of expenses are incurred, come out of the patient’s pocket. And we definitely need to take steps to make functional medicine more accessible.

But that’s only because the costs of conventional medicine are so heavily subsidized. And just occurring behind the scenes. A good example of this would be; it costs about $14,000 a year, according to the ADA, American Diabetes Association, to treat a patient with type 2 diabetes. And I just said, we have almost 100 million people in the US with either prediabetes or type 2. 88% of people with prediabetes don’t even know that they have it. And the average length of time that it takes to progress from prediabetes to type 2 diabetes is just 5 years. So if we don’t do something, we’re going to have 100 million people with full-fledged type 2 diabetes in a short period of time.

Now, all you have to do is some pretty simple math here. The age of diagnosis has been dropping; even kids being diagnosed with it. But let’s just be generous and say that it’s 40 years old for this hypothetical example. And then let’s say that this person lives another 40, 45 years. One thing that is fantastic about conventional medicine is we have these almost miraculous tools for keeping people alive at their end of their life, even when the probably shouldn’t be.

So it’s not outside the realm of imagination to think that someone could live 45 years, even with type 2 diabetes. So the expense, just to cover the treatment of diabetes. Not everything else that that person will also probably develop, like heart disease, and neuropathy; everything. Is $630,000 over the lifetime of that patient. But there are indirect costs, too. Eventually they’re going to become disabled. They’re probably not going to be able to work, so there will be a cost to society of lost productivity. Lost wages. That person will probably start to incur a lot of out of pocket medical expenses. So let’s say it’s a million dollars over that person’s lifetime.

Ok, if that person came to me, for example, or any other functional medicine practitioner or even a health coach who was well trained when they were still in the prediabetic stage. Or even early in the type 2 diabetic stage. I’m virtually certain that I could, with less than $5,000 invested, completely reverse that person’s diabetes.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’ve got a $20 book I could sell you. {laughs}

Chris Kresser: Yeah, absolutely! Exactly! But just to be extremely conservative. Let’s say we write that person a $10,000 check and say; you can hire a health coach, a nutritionist. You can buy three months of groceries. You can buy every book that you need; cookbooks, everything. And within 3 months, that person will no longer have diabetes. And guess what? We will have saved the health care system a million dollars over the course of 45 years for that one patient.

So I don’t want to hear; yes, functional medicine is expensive when you're paying out of pocket relative to the traditional healthcare system, but that’s only because the expenses are hidden.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And that’s like food, also.

Chris Kresser: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: Our cheap corn based food, that’s all subsidized.

Chris Kresser: Exactly.

7. Finding someone to help [32:16]

Diane Sanfilippo: So a lot of our listeners are in the place where they’re ready to commit to something like functional medicine, and working with someone, and spending the money. And a lot of them, because they’ve gotten to a point where they realize it’s not worth anything to try and use their conventional system. Even if they have insurance, because it’s not helping. So then the priority is; well, either I find something that will help, and I find a way to pay for it, or I’m sicker and sicker every year.

So we do have that cross-section of people who are; well, it is expensive, and I can’t afford it easily. But I’m finding a way to make it happen. What is it that people; because this is a big question that we get. Is like, what should people be looking for in somebody that can help them.

And I know you have some ideas and information about a framework that you're helping to train people on. And this is like from the beginning of when I met you. I’m like, he needs to be training other practitioners.

Chris Kresser: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s like I’m…

Chris Kresser: Clairvoyant.

Diane Sanfilippo: Clairvoyant about this stuff. I was like, that’s nice that you wrote a book for the everyday person, but maybe one day {laughs}.

Chris Kresser: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: I should just write down all my notes about…

Chris Kresser: Yeah, you should. You should tell me what I’m doing next.

Diane Sanfilippo: We’ll see about that. Anyway; let’s just start with the people who are ready. Because that is most of our listeners, at least. We know that there are people who it will be a block for them, and we need to change the system to get them to be doing this stuff, because they’re going to go with the system. And I do think there is a tip; even my parents, for example, who are 70. They’ve gone to an acupuncturist for years. My mom talks about her herbs. {laughs} So she’s in a generation, they are shifting. It’s happening. More and more of us are realizing this approach; the conventional approach doesn’t always work.

So what can we tell people who are feeling like not everyone is in Berkley and San Francisco, and there’s not a functional medicine practitioner on every corner. How do we help them find someone who can help them out?

Chris Kresser: It’s a great question. And to be honest, that’s exactly the question that led me to creating my training programs. I got asked; like you, Diane. I got asked a version of that question, and still do, literally every day. Multiple times a day, in the form of emails and tweets and blog comments, etc.

And the truth was, there weren’t that many people that I could refer to. Because I have a pretty high standard for what that should look like. And for me, it’s functional medicine coupled with an ancestral approach to diet and lifestyle. Which I still believe is the most powerful template to follow. But also delivered within the context of what I call a collaborative practice model, which pairs up licensed practitioners like doctors, chiropractors, naturopaths, acupuncturists with non-licensed providers like health coaches and nutritionists who are working within their scope of practice to provide a much higher level of care for their patients.

There just aren’t that many clinics out there that are operating with all three of those elements in that framework. And that’s another reason that I wrote the book, and also the reason I launched my ADAPT training programs last year. We started with the practitioner training program for licensed people, because I saw a big need there. But next year we’re actually launching a health coach training program.

Because as we’ve been talking about through the entire show; it’s just not enough to see, even a functional medicine doctor. You see someone, and then you wait 6 months to have your follow-up appointment for 30 minutes; what’s been going on for that entire 6 months period? You know, some people are able to do it on their own. But the vast majority of people need more support than that. They need frequent check-ins. They need tweaking for their diet protocol. They need somebody to talk to. And the model hasn’t been setup to accommodate that.

The short answer is we definitely need more of these kinds of practitioners, and I’m doing what I can to work toward that. In the short term, KresserInstitute.com has a practitioner directory of some of the practitioners who have been through my ADAPT training program. Institute for Functional Medicine has a directory of IFM certified practitioners.

But when you contact them, you want to ask them. Are you following an evidence based functional medicine approach? Are you continuing to train; do you do regular continuing education in functional medicine? Do you embrace an ancestral diet and lifestyle? Are you familiar with how to coach patients through the endless different variations of that? Low FODMAP, AIP, low histamine, etc.

What kind of support system do you have set up to get to support patients above and beyond just the initial appointment that they have with the doctor? I think there are so many situations where people have a promising first visit with the functional medicine doctor, they get a great treatment plan, and then everything just falls through the cracks and fizzles out. So you want to ask about what kind of ongoing support that you're going to get from the clinic.

In some case, I talk in my book about this. I call it the healthcare population pyramid. So if you imagine a triangle. At the very top, like 5%, those people are in an intensive, acute care situation. They’re in the hospital, or they’re in an acute outpatient clinic setting. And there, you know, conventional medicine is typically a pretty good fit for those people in that situation.

Then you’ve got maybe another 25% of people who are detail with chronic illnesses that require pretty intensive ongoing management. Maybe an autoimmune disease or something like that. And they would be a great candidate for a licensed functional medicine practitioner and working in conjunction with conventional medical practitioners and other people.

But then you’ve got this whole bottom of the pyramid. 70% of people who have a chronic disease, but maybe it’s not life-threatening. It’s not life-altering. They have Hashimoto’s; which of course can be very serious. But it causes symptoms. It’s something that’ doesn’t require acute intensive care. I would argue that a lot of those people could actually be adequately served by a health coach as long as that health coach is properly trained. Or a nutritionist.

The reality is, there are a lot more people that can become health coaches and nutritionists, just because of the logistics of what it takes to become a licensed healthcare provider. The amount of time and money that needs to be invested. Certain kind of way of thinking. It will always be limited. But there’s almost a limitless number of people that could be properly trained to become health coaches and nutritionists. And with the right diet, lifestyle, and behavior interventions, I really believe that 70% of people’s problems could be solved. Or at least significantly reduced, at a much lower cost than a full functional medicine workup.

And you know, I’m a functional medicine clinician. I’m not trying to talk myself out of a job here; I'm just saying it like it is, I think. You know?


Diane Sanfilippo: I totally agree. I think that was one of the reasons why even for something like the 21-Day Sugar Detox, probably now three or four years ago, I opened a coaches program for that. Because I can’t personally help as many people as having hundreds of coaches out there can do. And that’s the bottom of the pyramid. Those folks with type 2 diabetes; I’m like; come to me. We have answers for you. We have real food. You don’t need to starve, you don’t need to feel deprived. We can help you heal.

And that is; having these different frameworks and having ways to bring people to us. Folks like you and me, who then we say, “Hey, we’ve got certified people to help you who know what they’re talking about and are qualified and can really help you get through.” It is 80% of the game, I know.

You were talking earlier about the APEC seminar, when I remember going to some of these seminars about really specific health challenges, chronic disease. And it’s always, let’s get your digestion and blood sugar regulation under control before we deal with everything else. And those are things that can be handled by super fundamental work with a health coach and a nutritionist. You don’t need to spend money on a functional medicine practitioner first. You need to get that stuff out of the way.

And that’s actually what I tell people who listen to this show and they ask what should I do. I’m like; get this stuff cleaned up. Because otherwise that’s the first thing you're going to do with a functional medicine practitioner.

Chris Kresser: That’s right.

Diane Sanfilippo: And now you're paying 10 times as much to talk to them.

Chris Kresser: That’s true.

Diane Sanfilippo: When you could have just paid much less for a nutritionist to tell you the same thing. So that’s kind of that; do that work first before you show up. Do your homework, then go. And that’s putting the personal responsibility on people that a lot of times the conventional system sort of wants to strip them of. This conventional system says, you need us. And we’re like; no actually, you could take this $20 book. {laughs} I joke about it.

Chris Kresser: Oh, it’s absolutely true.

Diane Sanfilippo: But people come up to me at a book signing; oh, I got your book and I lost 100 pounds. I’m like, I love you, and you are so empowered. You know?

Chris Kresser: I think the best model actually. We kind of experimented with a model where a patient comes to the functional medicine office and instead of seeing the doctor first, they see the health coach. And they work with the health coach for 6 months, and you know, by the end of that 6 months maybe they don’t even need to proceed to functional medicine. But if they do, they can. And they’re often in a much better place, and actually the situation has been clarified. Because they might have had 24 symptoms, or complaints when they first started, and now they have 3. So then the functional medicine becomes more efficient and cost effective. Because you're focusing only on what couldn’t be resolved with all of those diet and lifestyle interventions.

Diane Sanfilippo: And you know what I love about that, too? Is that if you work with someone who is coaching you, for let’s say it is 6 months. What I love, because I am into the woo-woo stuff, and I know you are too.

Chris Kresser: I am in Berkeley, after all.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} Health coaches are not psychiatrists and psychologists; however. We can identify when someone has something going on in their life that is probably causing trauma and stress and physical manifestations of emotional issues. And getting through some of that. What good is it to do blood tests and stool tests and urine tests when someone’s in an abusive relationship? Again, it’s not like the health coach is going to know that, but it’s probably going to come out in the course of 6 months. Something will come out. So maybe that sounds crazy.

But in all the years that we’ve been doing this, I feel like there are a large number of people who suffer physically from emotional traumas.

Chris Kresser: It’s not crazy at all. It’s totally right on. And I actually tell a story in my book about one of my patients; it’s not her real name, but Charlotte. We did the full functional medicine routine. We did all the lab tests and everything. Went down all the rabbit holes. And she did improve a little bit, but not nearly as much as either of us wanted her to. And at one point I took a big step back, and I said, would you be willing to shift gears out of the functional medicine mode and let me play more like a health coach role with you, and share some feedback and intuitive feelings that I have about what’s going on with you. She said, sure, I’m willing to try anything at this point.

She was a person was really, really wound up. Really intensely focused on every little detail of her diet. Would send excel spreadsheets with all of her diet plan and supplements and her labs all tracked and laid out. Her world, I think, had just gotten smaller and smaller and smaller over the years. And more restricted and limited. And she wasn’t hanging out with her friends. She’d lost interest in her hobbies. She was, I think, really quite depressed.

I said, I think what you need is; we ended up calling it a prescription for pleasure. {laughs} And I had her make a list of all the things that she loves to do, and that bring her joy and pleasure, and to commit to doing at least one of those a day. And to forget about diet for the time being. Not go off the rails and eat pizza and drink beer every night, but just stick with the healthy, clean type of diet, and just put that in the background. Don’t spend all of your free time on Paleo Hacks, or whatever other forum trying to figure out the minutia of AIP plus low-FODMAP plus low-histamine; you know, whatever it is. Just actually try to cultivate more joy and pleasure in your life.

And she did, to her credit, and 6 months later she really looked and sounded like a different person. Did it eliminate all of her health issues? No. But it allowed her to be in relationship with them in a completely different way. And I think that’s; I did that in my role as a functional medicine clinician, and I do that often with patients. But as you said, you don’t need to be a licensed practitioner to do that with somebody. And in fact, you're probably better suited not to be. Because you have more time to explore those kinds of things. And really kind of more implicit permission to do that in that relationship.

So this is why; I think health coaching is an amazing high art, if it’s done well. You have people who are trained in all evidence based principles of behavior change. Knowing how to really facilitate meaningful and lasting behavior change. Training in coaching the strengths and positive psychology. Focusing on what’s right instead of fixing what’s broken. Which is I think the old paradigm of psychotherapy and change. You have motivational interviewing, which helps people to connect their deeper desires and goals with the changes that they’re making so they don’t get stuck and fall off the wagon. They don’t feel like they’re just doing it for somebody else. Their doctor, their partner, whatever. There is some really powerful stuff in there that can change people’s lives.

So, I think sometimes health coaches get looked down on because they don’t have the license; they don’t have the authority and credibility. They can’t order labs and all that stuff. The reality is, to me, that’s the highest level work that you can do with someone. I’ll probably get in trouble with some licensed colleagues.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s the thing that we can’t ever replace. You can’t replace a human connection, and it takes a certain type of person with a desire to connect with someone. Maybe it’s emotional intelligence or something that you literally feel that energy from the other person. If you're coaching just over the phone, you may or may not pick it up. If you coach on video.

Chris Kresser: A step up from that, for sure.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m sure that client was practically vibrating when she would sit down. I’ve had that experience. And I used to be that way, energetically. Probably almost 10 years ago or so. I was much more of a higher vibration person. I’ve really just come down. It doesn’t mean I’m not energetic, I know that that’s a different type of person. It’s something that I think; people almost become more and more that way, the more restricted they are. The more they’re told; this diet will help you but you have to be really strict and you have to do this. People even come to me, and they want to do a 21-Day Sugar Detox and low-FODMAP, and I’m literally like, no. I don’t think you should do that. You know. So to your point, I’m sending you away, but it’s because I don’t think you should restrict more. And you're already dealing with something that’s difficult. So yeah, it is a really interesting mindset for people to be in, realizing how important it is to have coaches.

9. How to get into functional medicine [49:18]

Diane Sanfilippo: So, on that front, we’ve had a lot of people asking. And it’s partially about the book, but it’s just in general, just your take on this. Because I know you’ve got your ADAPT framework, and it’s a training program. So this is probably partially the answer to this question. But we have 4 different people asking, if they’re either already trained in conventional medicine or they’re going through that first, do they need to go through that first to get into functional medicine. And/or, how do they go from; OK, I’m an MD and I went to medical school, but I believe in this and I want to do this. How do we bridge that gap for them?

Chris Kresser: Great question. There are different approaches. In functional medicine right now, there is no board certification like there is for obstetrics, or gynecology, or any number of other medical specialties. Therefore, there is no real regulation or requirement for who can call themselves a functional medicine practitioner. There are some pros and cons with that, for sure. Because you have a lot of people calling themselves functional medicine practitioner who really haven’t had any training to speak of at all. And I think that can hurt the potential of functional medicine to advance.

But the other side of that is you can enter functional medicine from a variety of backgrounds depending on what your interests are. Certainly an MD or an osteopath will have the broadest scope of practice, right? That’s how it is in every state in the country, they have autonomy. They’re able to order lab tests and prescribe treatments, medications. Very, very broad scope of practice. So if you want that kind of flexibility and autonomy and authority that comes with those degrees, whether it’s deserve or not, frankly. You get that. And if you're willing to do that and pay that price, that’s what gives you the most flexibility.

But you could also choose to become a chiropractor, or acupuncturist, or a naturopathic physician and enter functional medicine that way. So I think it really depends on the person’s preference. However, I’m speaking now to just licensed functional medicine providers, and people who are able to order the lab tests and prescribe treatment based on those tests. There are a lot of other ways to help people, as we’ve been saying. And for some people, I truly believe that that whole licensed path is not necessary, and may not even be desirable for them.

I think a trend that’s happened in the nutrition; I’m curious to see if you’ve seen this, Diane. But what I’ve seen is with a lot of nutritionists and health coaches they have a little bit of a feeling of inferiority or some thought that they can’t really accomplish everything that they need to accomplish without being able to order and interpret labs. And certain, that’s necessary in many cases. But I would say that we focused a little bit too much on that in the functional medicine world. I can say myself that I even went down that road.

It’s almost unlimited; the number of labs you could run and the number of tests and the number of rabbit holes that you could go down when you're in functional medicine. And I feel like that can become a distraction or almost; an addiction is not really the right word. But it can be something that you do when you don’t know what else to do. And when you don’t take the time to step back and think about things systemically. And when you're not able to, or not willing to step back and shift gears and move in a different direction that doesn’t involve that kind of lab testing, as I mentioned with Charlotte.

So I think for some people, the best choice will be to become a health coach or a nutritionist and work with people on that level. Especially people who are really relational. People like you, Diane, who tune in to other people, their feelings, and what’s going on, and for whom that’s rewarding and important. So I really think that no matter what someone’s background and goals, there is a place for them in this movement if they want to be part of it.

Liz Wolfe: This episode of the Balanced Bites podcast is sponsored by our friends at Primally Pure Skincare. Primally Pure makes 100% natural and nontoxic skincare products that support radiant skin, a healthy body, and a happy self. They use ingredients like tallow from grass-fed cows; organic and fair trade coconut oil, and organic oils, herbs, and extracts to formulate effective products that also smell amazing and look beautiful sitting on your bathroom counter.

At www.primallypure.com, you’ll find their bestselling natural deodorant that actually works; face mists made from locally sourced and organic rose and orange blossom hydrosols, and their brand new baby line. You’ll also find Diane’s favorite Primally Pure product, dry shampoo, and Liz’s favorite, that’s me, the Everything Spray with magnesium.

As a special bonus for you, Primally Pure is offering a free lip balm with your first purchase of one item or more. Simply add a lip balm to your cart along with any one item, and use the code “balancedbites”, one word no caps, during checkout to receive one of their lip balms for free with your order. Head to www.primallypure.com and check out their range of safe and effective all natural skincare products.

Diane Sanfilippo: I think to your point about coaches; I don’t know how many feel the inferiority so much as they feel limited in the sense that they’re overwhelmed when people come to them. It’s almost as if they’re expecting them to do things that their doctor couldn’t do. And there are so many more health coaches than functional medicine practitioners. It’s easier to find a nutritionist or a health coach. And so then someone comes to us with for diagnosed autoimmune conditions, and we feel overwhelmed.

And one of the things that we; the Balanced Bites Master Class was kind of our practitioner class and program where throughout that class there had been many times that we end up saying to our practitioners; remember, you're here to talk to them about diet and lifestyle. And that’s a lot. That’s not really as limited as you think. And giving people the time and the space to just almost dump out all the stuff in which nutritional and then lifestyle and emotional stuff will also come out. It’s like, if you can train yourself and get used to figuring out what people aren’t saying, you know?

It does take a certain type of personality, as you said. And an intuition. And a sort of a lot of people skills to just read between the lines. I even can think of it with myself, working with practitioners. It’s like; I don’t know, maybe sometimes we just want someone to listen, and just even knowing that someone else listened is 1% healing.

Chris Kresser: That’s for sure, I’m going to be teaching in my coaching program. Building trust and rapport is the most important thing you can do. And that’s actually true in medicine.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Chris Kresser: You can screw up so many other things if you have that trust and rapport. But if you don’t have that trust and rapport, nothing is going to go well.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. Hopefully that’s a bright light for those of you who are listening who are coaches and feeling at all like you need to learn more to do more. Honestly, the more you know, almost the less you’ll be able to help somebody in certain ways. Like you were saying, Chris. That super detailed functional medicine test and get to that really nugget root of some kind of cellular malfunction that’s going on in this person. That is the 1%, 5% issue.

The rest of it, as a health coach or even somewhere in the interim on that spectrum. You can help somebody achieve so much that then sending them to someone who is going to work on those labs is so much more effective and clear. Because they’re less stressed. They’re getting great sleep. They’re living a happy life. And yet still, there’s this weird thing going on. Ok. And it’s a totally different situation than this high vibration, stressed out, doing everything not working.

Chris Kresser: Yeah, for sure. And the Shangri-La is when that all comes together. Right? When you have people that are working to the maximum of their potential and their scope of practice. The licensed practitioners are doing exactly what they can do, and they’re trained to do, and they do really well. And then the health coach and nutritionist are doing exactly what they can do very well. And that’s what we should be doing. That’s what healthcare should look like. That kind of collaboration.

And it’s totally possible. It’s happening already. Our clinic is set up that way now. We have 3 MDs; me and then a nurse practitioner. We’ve got a health coach and two nutritionists. Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine with Mark Hyman, they’re set up that way. It’s still early days. But it’s exciting and hopeful. And I think this is going to be the future of medicine.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m excited. I’ve gotten goosebumps like 6 separate times during this conversation. It feels a little creepy to almost think this is the beginning. It’s breaking ground on what hopefully will be a new era in the way that medicine is practiced. And maybe there will be a day where I don’t resist stepping into a system like that, because I won’t go. I pay for anything need out of pocket. I had some moles removed $500 later, but I’m like, well that’s less than I would have paid for a month of a coverage system that I’m not a part of.

Chris Kresser: Right.

Diane Sanfilippo: So if we can all get to a place where we do feel like we can go to a center that’s going to help us get healthy, and not just manage disease until we die. That is the current system.

Chris Kresser: That’s a perfect tagline for our current system. American health care; manage your disease until you die.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Chris Kresser: I love it.

Diane Sanfilippo: Oh my goodness. Ok so this has been; this is heavy stuff. But there’s hope. And I’m really glad to see this as a direction that you're going, because it’s so obvious that we need it, and I think you're the right person to work on this. I know you’ve been buddies now with Mark Hyman for a while, and he’s also blazing that trail. And I think that’s awesome to have you guys kind of both working on that.

10. What’s next for Chris [59:53]

Diane Sanfilippo: What’s next? What’s next for where the system is going? What’s next for what you want to tell people about the book and who can get some value from it? What else should we tell people?

Chris Kresser: Yeah, so I wrote this for three different audiences, really. One is the folks you were referring to. The conventional people who have been trained, or are being trained conventionally but already know that it’s limited and want to reach beyond that. I wrote it for people who are like me and like Scott and others who are outside of the conventional system, but also want a more systemic framework of methodology to work from and benefit from the ancestral diet and lifestyle and this collaborative practice model in functional medicine.

And then the third group, which is I think equally if not more important, because I really believe this is going to be a grassroots revolution. It’s going to be bottom up, not top down. Is what I call citizen scientists and health activists. So these are, of course, all the people who listen to our podcast and read our blogs and our books. They’re really passionate about this movement. They may never become a health care practitioner of any kind, but they have used it to reverse their own chronic disease, or their son’s, or their daughter’s, or their parents. And they want to play a role in some way.

Whatever your background or your goals, I think you could be and advocate for this new approach to healthcare. Whether that means sharing it with your family, or sharing it with your doctor, or your gym trainer, whatever. This is how it’s going to happen. It’s going to have this ripple effect and spread outwards.

So my job over the next few years is to continue training as many practitioners as I can in this framework. We’ve trained almost 400 doctors and other health care providers now; licensed providers. And then the health coach program, which I mentioned, is going to be launching in June of next year. We’re going to start enrollment in April. So if folks are interested in that, they can go to KresserInstitute.com and just sign up for the email list there. You’ll be kept appraised of what’s going on there.

And then we also, this year, launched something we call the ADAPT Academy. Which is, the reality is that a lot of people are super interested in this, but they still have a fulltime job, or they’re a parent, or they’re really busy and they can’t devote a full year to a new training program or the thousands of dollars that that can often cost. So we wanted a way of giving people a chance to dip their toe in the water. Get exposed to some great training. But do it in their pajamas at home on a monthly basis. And that’s what the Academy is. It’s less than $50 a month. We wanted to make it really accessible and affordable. And we have great seminars with guest experts on everything from infectious disease to treating SIBO to lowering your cholesterol. We’ve got research updates, we’ve got quick wins. Lots of really great content there, so you can check that out at KresserInstitute.com.

And then the book is available now. It’s on Amazon in paperback, kindle, and audiobook formats.

Diane Sanfilippo: I love it. Awesome. It sounds like actually the ADAPT; is it called ADAPT Academy?

Chris Kresser: It is, yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: The one that’s for…

Chris Kresser: The monthly membership.

Diane Sanfilippo: Anyone. What we teach in our Balanced Bites Master Class just for a student, this would be adding onto that. Because we don’t get into things like infectious disease, but we give you all the foundational information. So if you aren’t a practitioner, or you're considering becoming one but you want to just dip your toe and learn more, we’ll teach you the foundations. And then what Chris is going to teach you is obviously going to go beyond what we teach you in there. So I think that all of this. Long story short; there’s so much education and information for anybody, no matter where you're at. If you just want to learn more than you get in a podcast, come into these courses. Because that’s where we put it all together to be much more comprehensive.

Chris Kresser: Yep.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s amazing. I think so many people are going to be helped by that. Thank you so much for taking time.

Chris Kresser: Thank you, Diane. It was a pleasure to see you virtually, at least. Our paths haven’t crossed in the real world as much as they were previously, but I imagine that they will soon enough. I mean, it’s not like we’re that far away but it might as well be in another country. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: It might as well. And how is your daughter 6 years old?!

Chris Kresser: 6 years old.

Diane Sanfilippo: What?! You just had her!

Chris Kresser: Yeah, I know. She lost her first tooth. I was like; wow, she’s losing teeth. She’s in a musical theater program and taking ballet, and doing all the little girl stuff.

Diane Sanfilippo: That is amazing.

Chris Kresser: It is amazing to watch.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m so happy for you.

Chris Kresser: Thanks.

Diane Sanfilippo: Awesome. Well thank you so much.

Chris Kresser: You're welcome. Pleasure to be with you again.

Diane Sanfilippo: Alright you guys, that’s it for this week. I absolutely loved this conversation with Chris; I hope you loved it just as much as I did. Make sure you share it with a friend. And don’t forget, you can find me, Diane, at http://dianesanfilippo.com. And Chris at ChrisKresser.com. Don’t forget to join our email lists for free goodies and updates you don’t find anywhere else on our websites or on the podcast. And, while you’re on the internet, please leave us an iTunes review. We’ll see you next week.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *