Podcast Episode #43: Low Residue Diet, Weight Gain, Cooking Methods

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1. IBS/Crohns & a low-residue diet [8:51] 2. Cooking time and temp for optimal nutrients [19:46] 3. How can I keep wieght on? [31:37] 4. Looking and feeling good for a special event [37:45] 5. Food sensitivities [50:06] 6. Eczema [58:46] 7. Psoriasis [1:03:04]

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LIZ WOLFE: Hey everyone, I'm Liz Wolfe, nutritional therapy practitioner and the diabolical mind behind CaveGirlEats.com. Hey Diane…


LIZ WOLFE: Is there like an echo or is that just my phone?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I think it's your phone. I don't know.

LIZ WOLFE: All right, well, then I'll try to ignore it.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Are you still on an original iPhone?

LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]


LIZ WOLFE: Actually, no, I'm plugged into a dinosaur right now. [laughs]


LIZ WOLFE: It's pretty bad, but yeah, that's Diane. She's a certified nutrition consultant and CHEK Holistic Lifestyle Coach. She's a Paleo-oriented nutritionist and the woman behind BalancedBites.com. Welcome to episode 43 of the Balanced Bites podcast! So remember that the materials and content-content-I know, it's like this echo is absolutely insane. Hold on, I'm going to unplug real quick. See if that helps. Okay, maybe that helps. No, it didn't.


LIZ WOLFE: But anyway, so the materials and content with which we assault your ears are intended as general information only and are not to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, So a few quick announcements. The CrossFit Games are coming up in a few weeks. I will be there, me, Liz. I'll be representing PaleoKits and Steve's Club National Program as usual. So be sure to stop by the booth, learn about Steve's Club, maybe grab some Paleo friendly goodies. That's pretty much what's coming up for me. Diane, big things happening for you. The book all locked and loaded, ready to go?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: The book is DONE, and I now begin the adrenal relocation program. [laughs] Adrenal recovery, adrenal relocation. It's so funny. I remember when-I remember when Robb Wolf was talking about traveling to teach seminars, writing the book, and how crushed he was, and I just thought it was such an extreme word to use, and I actually emailed him the other day, and I was, I'm crushed. I'm like flattened. I can like barely take myself to the mall to just kind of have a little girl time and buy some eyeshadow. I'm just like, I mean, I can do like one thing a day, and that's pretty much it. So yeah, I'm basically like trying to recover and it's funny because a lot of people are really responding on Facebook last night. I posted something about my training program, what it will entail, in the lifting a heavy thing once for up to 3 times, and then sitting down for awhile. And nothing more than walking in terms of cardio activity, that kind of thing, so yeah, it's getting pretty serious. Of course, I was back in the gym last night and did something to tweak something. It's like, story of my life, but I think, you know, I just think it's really important for people to recognize when, you know, there are so many other stressors in your life that adding intense training on top of it is a really bad negative stressor. So fine with me to be a bit of an example and make sure that people are understanding and I think I pointed a bunch of people back to the old adrenal fatigue podcast that we did on here. We did two episodes kind of far apart from each other, but they should be pretty easy to find. So if people are curious about kind of what all that is about, definitely read up, but basically, I've just been stressed intensely for at least the last six months, but probably at least the last year. I know I was working on the book for the last year, but the last six months really through my own fault, just like was supposed to turn the thing in so long ago, and just really didn't finish it, and then the last, you know, so much of it was done, but the last few weeks have been really, really tight deadlines and final edits, over and over, and all so that we can have books in stores August 7th. So that will be cool. Everyone who's ordered on Amazon ahead of time-I think you might even get it on August 7th. I'm not sure how it works, if they don't ship til that date or if they ship so that it arrives that date. I've definitely heard of people who like, they shipped it so that it'll arrive that date, so that would be cool.
Another little cool, really cool tidbit…I wasn't sure how excited to get about it, but then I realized how awesome it is. Probably on a small scale at first, and then I'm imagining that later it'll be a little more, maybe nationwide in available everywhere, but my book is going to be sold at Costco stores.

LIZ WOLFE: Awesome.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: So it will be on Amazon, yeah. Barnes & Noble, like regular book stores, but Costco's picked it up for just a limited release at first, which I think is really cool because I mean, there you are, right in the grocery store essentially, so you can kind of check out, see if your local Costco has it in. I'm guessing that I'll probably do some events or book signings, things like that, probably at least somewhat local to here, with Costco stores, but we'll see. So yeah, that's kind of exciting, and I'm hoping I can rest and recover and gear up for the fall with our workshops and book signings and all kinds of fun stuff, so yeah, that's my update.

LIZ WOLFE: Never stops.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I know. After this podcast I'm taking a nap. It's like…

LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I mean, I'm like, every day, I'm just going to take a nap. I'll grab my cat, go find him wherever he is, because he's probably sleeping somewhere, and we'll take a nap. Yeah.

LIZ WOLFE: Cats know how to do it.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: The big plan. Yeah.

LIZ WOLFE: They do it right. Well, that's exciting. And you're speaking at the Juvenile Arthritis Foundation, is that correct? On July 20th? Is that still on the books?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yup. Yup. That is correct, and it's called Juvenile Arthritis, but it's cool because it's like, I think there's going to be teenagers in one session, but there's also essentially young adults, so you know, a lot of people think about arthritis as being something that only afflicts much older generations, but it does affect a lot of younger people, so I'm excited because I think a lot of them are going to be, you know, 20s, even their young 30s, and then there's a group of teenagers. And we're, you know, we're talking about food and anti-inflammatory foods and how to work on that, so it's definitely going to be fun. I'm excited. Excited to step into a different little community there.

LIZ WOLFE: Cool. Paleo is everywhere.


LIZ WOLFE: So awesome, well, I just want to give a quick shoutout to a couple of folks. I had a little quick and dirty business trip to Pittsburgh this week for some top secret stuff that's going on and hoping to talk a little more about it later in the summer, but I just wanted to give a shout to our Pittsburgh people because there's just not a better crowd of people on the whole planet. Bill and Hayley of the Food Lovers Kitchen/Primal Palate. Just extraordinary people. Cream of the crop. Could not-I just can't say enough nice things about them, and they, you know, they're the ones that introduced the two of us, Diane.


LIZ WOLFE: And so that worked out well. And I also wanted to say what's up to Jill from First Comes Health. She…


LIZ WOLFE: is a holistic…she's so cool. She's a holistic health coach, and just one of the most genuine and fun folks you could hope to meet. She's great. We all just had a good, you know, nutrient dense dinner prepared by the Food Lovers: lamb and all kinds of good stuff. Hayley and I ate all kinds of liver and you know, fun stuff like that, and it was just a much needed albeit quick little opportunity to do some work and decompress a little bit with friends afterwards, so shoutout to those guys.


LIZ WOLFE: Yeah. All right, so I'm just teasing this thing that I'm not telling people about until I finally have something really solid to give folks, but yeah.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I just tell people about things and then I change my mind, and I'm like [laughs]

LIZ WOLFE: [laughs] I'm..


LIZ WOLFE: I'm like Regina George's hair-I'm full of secrets. [laughs] Or is that Gretchen Weiners?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Gretchen Weiners, yeah, I think her hair is full of secrets. That's why it's so great.

LIZ WOLFE: All right. That's why it's so big. All right, so…


LIZ WOLFE: All right. Oh boy. On to the questions. John from Dallas. He says: “I’ve been mostly Paleo for a few months and been fairly happy with it. I was coming off of what most people would call a healthy diet which was similar but with whole grains and dairy and less fat. I don’t have any history of food issues so it has mostly been about long term health. My wife on the other hand eats pretty poorly even though she has a lot of food and intestinal problems.” And John, I wouldn't say she eats pretty poorly even though she has a lot of food and intestinal problems. I would probably say she has a lot of food and intestinal problems because she eats pretty poorly. Just my little, little editorial there. “She has been off gluten for a while since she appears to have celiacs but rather than teaching her that food changes can have a big effect, she has mostly acted as if she’s already given up too much to be asked to do anything else. She has a serious carb/sugar addiction problem. In the last month she’s had a real escalation in her IBS/Crohn's type symptoms and I’ve been trying to encourage her to finally give Paleo a shot. She says that a lot of the food she sees me eat would be impossible for her, mostly in terms of how much fat I’m eating and she says she can’t eat all the leafy greens and other salad type vegetables that I do. Her doctor recommended a low residue diet which doesn’t look too good to me. Do you think that a Paleo diet sticking to the low-inflammatory side is a better starting point? Or maybe just the intersection between these two approaches? Or maybe I should just support the low residue diet until she feels a bit better and try to get her to transition then? ”

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Oh, this is a good question, yeah. This is a really good one.


DIANE SANFILIPPO: Is it me? Am I echoing? I hope not.

LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]

DIANE SANFILIPPO: So I went and looked up low residue diet because I didn't know what it was. I never heard of it before, actually. And what it looks like, a low residue diet is doing is mainly pulling a lot of extra insoluble fiber out of the way or out of the diet, which is a good idea, to be honest. So I'd really recommend pretty much the same approach, only the food quality in a low residue diet, in terms of what they're recommending on, at least what it seems through conventional approaches. What they're recommending as low residue, you know, food quality is very low. So what the low residue plan allows for are things like refined white bread, cakes, cookies, pretzels, etc, candy, all of that. It's just completely illogical, you know, that avoiding insoluble fiber would mean that we would then just eat tons of refined foods, so you know, I get really irritated by doctors who kind of recommend packaged garbage to their patients. I just wonder if they honestly believe that that's health promoting. Like I can totally understand that there are elements of, you know, what we would consider healthy Paleo foods, that just aren't right for everybody, and so you know, this is one of the reasons why, and I'll probably be talking about this a lot in upcoming podcasts, but I created 11 different meal plans in my book, and they're all based on Paleo foods, and they're all based on like one sort of main meal plan that then just gets varied because that's the way we approach these things. We just kind of look at what are whole foods, and then within that scope, are there certain whole foods that some people really don't do that well with?
So what I would recommend for her is, you know, show her, and for kind of your relationship with her trying to help her with this, show her a list of all the foods that are considered like quote unquote fair game on a Paleo diet. Use the guide that I have to Paleo foods. I would have her avoid FODMAPs, which are denoted on that list, as well as most fruit, leafy greens, which are things that she's already been told to avoid, nuts and seeds. Those are all gut irritants. So what I'd have her do for carbs are mostly things like starchy vegetables: sweet potatoes, plantains, even something like bananas, and you can check out the Paleo Carbs list that I have as well, also a free download on the website. There will be updated versions of all these from the book as well, but you know, you can download all that stuff for free on the website. So basically what she does need to do, you know, if she doesn't think that what's on your plate looks right for her and what she wants to eat, that's fine. I've definitely heard this from a lot of people recently. You know, one person's dealing with a condition and they're looking at what the other people are eating, and they're like, well, I either can't eat all that or I don't want to, it's not my taste preference, what have you. There's a huge variety of foods that are whole, real foods, so we just don't need to be pigeon-holed to, you know, steak and kale, for example. So, just you know, kind of keep that in mind, and if she wants to eat a lot of sweet potatoes and fish instead of, you know, salads, things like that, that's fine. You know, just getting the track over to whole foods, nutrient dense foods is really the priority. So beyond that she really does need some support in the gut healing arena. So we talked a million times about bone broth. Make some bone broth. You can incorporate that into recipes, like soups and stews. It doesn't have to be just plain. But some l-glutamine could be useful. You could also buy something like Knox gelatin and just make gelatin from that. You can use herbal teas and even like a tiny bit of honey, potentially, to sweeten it or just an herbal tea that maybe has stevia in it, and just use that with the gelatin to make it have a nice flavor. I also have some information on that in the book, too, just kind of how to do it, but you can easily just follow the recipe on the box.
She really needs to stop hammering her digestive tract with foods that are literally just getting down in there and going to war with the cells that line both the small and large intestine. So it's really funny because people presume that foods like grains, rice, bread, you know, even the refined forms, because they think that they're easy to digest. But the reality is that most of them are filled with gut irritants, anti-nutrients. Things that, you know, really resist our digestive function at a very microscopic level and that's at the root, you know, of all this irritation and some of the nutrition problems. So, you know, bottom line, there's a way to approach even a low residue diet within the scope of real, whole, Paleo-oriented foods. That being said, if your wife does not want to change, you're not going to make her change. So she's either got to hit some kind of painful rock bottom or a light bulb has to go on for her that, you know, what she's doing isn't working and she's ready to do something different, but just consistently presenting the information when a person isn't ready for change, you're really kind of, you know, you're talking to a wall at that point, and no disrespect to your wife at all, but even, you know, people who just are resistant to new ideas at all. And understand that, if she has already been told, you know, she can't eat gluten, that's hard for people. It's really hard, and it sometimes like turns their world upside down. You know, it's like your entire life is built around cereal, sandwiches, and pasta, and now you have to find a different way. So be patient with her. Give her some time to figure this stuff out, and remember that it is her body, and of course you care very much about her and you want her to be healthy, but she has to make that decision for herself, or you're just going to be constantly in a struggle here. But it's entirely possible to do this. It's entirely possible to do low residue diet within, you know, real food, and you know, find some healing for her.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, if she's ready for a new life and a new way of thinking, then she's ready. But if there's still that static buzzing the airwaves in her brain, you know, like that noise that makes people like truly believe from the bottom of their hearts that they're about to quote give up too much, then there really is not much you can push for her to do. And that's fine. One of the most difficult things I've seen some of my clients deal with is this idea that if they don't want to give up too much, you know, finger quotes, but what about the giving up this terrible, crippling, inflammatory condition? Why aren't people thinking of it that way? We just become so entrenched in our quote conditions, like again, finger quotes, making heavy use of finger quotes here, that we start to identify with them, as if they're a part of us. As if they're inseparable, like inseparable from who we are. They're just our constant travel companion. And you know, we even think about them that way when we're in the process of dealing with them. We still look at them as if they're like on the farm, like they'll just always be a part of us, and that's just not always the case. So just people can literally choose. A lot of people, not everybody, but some people can really choose to give up a condition just by changing what they put in their cakehole. It's like, it's not a sacrifice to me. It's like harnessing the power and control that we have over our own lives and opening a door we were willingly leaving closed. And there's just nothing more rewarding than shifting that mindset from, oh I already stopped eating so many foods to hell, yeah, I can control my destiny and I'm not a slave to some like chewable, swallowable, gut irritating, inflammatory nutrient-poor non-optimal food that hurts me. It, you know, it's just, you're not giving up the-you're not giving up food, you're giving up this like chronic life bummer. Just think of it that way. I don't know. Maybe I'm getting a little abstract.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: No, I like it. I like that because I feel like when we teach our workshops, we tend to ask people how many people have, you know, been Paleo or haven't really been eating bread for like a year, and they raise their hands, and I'm like, how many of you don't care about bread anymore, and pretty much everybody keeps their hand up because after a point…


DIANE SANFILIPPO: Of going and doing this back and forth dance, right? People realize when I eat that, I don't feel good, and I no longer want to choose that because I want to choose to feel good. Like it becomes a totally different choice and I think you made a really good point. It's like, don't…you don't have to think of it as I'm giving up a food, but why don't you give up the pain and suffering and then see how you feel, you know, and let that person feel it for themselves for awhile.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, you always say that, tell yourself a new story. But then again, if you're not ready to…


LIZ WOLFE: open the book…If you're not ready to take the analogy to a really obnoxious, you know, level, then you're not ready. [laughs] All right.
So next question. Emily asks: “I keep hearing that food should be cooked as lightly as possible and definitely not browned or fried. In practical terms, what does this look like in the kitchen? I know how to cook, but am heavily reliant on grilling, roasting, and sautéing, and must admit that I like my veggies fairly brown. In particular, how should I be cooking meat? I have found that I very much like calf liver and fatty cuts of grass-fed beef but I'm not sure of the safest ways to cook these. One thing I have been doing with beef is stewing it in coconut milk, but I could use some more suggestions.” And I'm going to read some additional details because there may be a little another something we can pull out of this question and potentially help Emily with. “This is probably not terribly relevant to the question, but I eat pretty strictly paleo — breakfast is wild canned salmon (with skin and bones), avocado, and nori; lunch and dinner are meat (I try for beef or lamb more often than poultry or pork and grass fed/pastured more often than grain fed) and fermented veggies (sauerkraut or kimchi). I keep my carbs very low to control blood sugar — before I discovered the ketogenic diet I was always hungry. If I do need a snack, I go for eggs, cheese, and/or butter. I just started making bone broth. My exercise focuses on strength and flexibility classes four times a week. I typically sleep from about 10pm to 5am and would love to sleep later, but my body just doesn’t seem to want to.” I wish I could, you know, willingly get up at 5 o'clock in the morning. It's a struggle for me. Every day. “I stopped taking my Trader Joe’s multivitamin because I noticed that it contains soy, but I do take Natural Calm because my early morning waking and infrequent eliminations both seemed like they could be related to magnesium deficiency. The addition of magnesium and fermented veggies do seem to have helped somewhat with the elimination, but it’s still only about every other day.”
So I thought I'd jump in and just talk about the advanced glycation end-products real quick, and Diane, maybe you can jump in with whatever you've got and tackle the poop situation.


LIZ WOLFE: So AGEs, those are Advanced Glycation End-Products or Advanced Gly-I always trip over these words-Glycosylation End-Products. You'll also hear the words “oxidative damage” or “reactive oxygen species;” those are also kind of wrapped up into this process and consequences of advanced glycation end-products. They're basically formed when I believe proteins or lipids interact with sugar that has undergone a chemical reaction, so the proteins and lipids become what's called glycated. AGEs can be formed by cooking, like when you carbonize stuff, which is called the Maillard reaction, and it can also be formed in the body, in the case of chronically elevated blood sugar; we'll see a lot of AGEs. And honestly, you know, 95% of the population is dealing with chronically elevated blood sugars. So it's associated with all kinds of health issues from cardiovascular problems, joint health, inflammation, stuff like that. So a lot of times when I kind of think about these, I really just think of inflammation and that's kind of an easy way, I guess, to look at it. Diane, you can correct me if you think I'm wrong there, but what else did I want to say about it?
Fructose I think is considered more prone to generate advanced glycation end-products in the body. All that said, dietary advanced glycation end-products, especially in a good, solid, Paleo-type diet, to me as a practitioner, is far less a concern, but that's my opinion. It's just a little bit less on my radar once I get people shifted into kind of a Paleo/Primal/Weston Price type of diet. They're just not exposing themselves as much to as many risk factors as the people with really horrendous diets and lifestyle choices, who are just chronically inflamed, chronically elevated blood sugar and stuff like that. Anyway, I think this is an interesting question, and I think it's worth adding some variety into your cooking methods, just to kind of expose yourself or expose yourself less to that type of stuff, so all that said, I've done a few things to increase the variety of methods that I use to cook, so I'll probably carbonize something real nice about once a week, but other than that, I'm trying to expand my repertoire a little bit. I just started baking bacon. I've taken to bakin' bacon.


LIZ WOLFE: It's absolutely delicious. As much as I love fresh cooked skillet bacon, with the time constraints of my life right now, it is so much easier just to put some bacon on a sheet, shut the oven, and have it done, rather than having to watch bacon in a pan every morning. You get these beautiful clear drippings that you can use later. It's delicious. It's good for me. A perfect way to start the day. So what else did I want to say? Yeah, I mean, I guess cooking and kind of carbonizing foods does create advanced glycation end-products, so I think it's a good, you know, good call, try to mix in some more stewing, more steaming, Crockpot cooking, and stuff like that. You don't have to stop entirely carbonizing your foods, but just be aware of it. Maybe do a little bit less if you're concerned about it. What else? I use…if you marinate your food with acid, lemon juice, vinegar, that type of stuff, it seems like that reduces the generation of those AGEs, so I like to do some kind of vinegar-based marinade, and I use Jaccard meat tenderizer. You can get those on Amazon; they're like 40 bucks. It's a really good way to make grass-fed meat a little bit-a little bit more, you know, I don't know, cooking friendly. I tend to overcook my grass-fed meat fairly easily, and it's a little bit harder to get some of that, you know, that tender tasting, I don't know…I guess that's pretty much all I had to say. Vinegar, acid, Jaccard meat tenderizer, just good for grass-fed meats. I suck at cooking, that's the problem. Basically no matter what I do, I end up searing it and carbonizing it, but it's not always on purpose. So anyway, that's my side of the story. What do you think?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I don't really think that much about this stuff.


DIANE SANFILIPPO: I really don't. I think about a lot of things, and this isn't one of them.

LIZ WOLFE: [laughs]

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I'm just like, for as much as people are going to get in the kitchen and cook, I just think all of the anti-inflammatory antioxidant types of things that we're doing by, you know, removing refined foods, seed oils, all that kind of stuff, I just don't ever consider to myself, like should I not cook this this way, It just never ever crosses my mind. I cook stuff however I want to, and I move on with my life. I generally prefer baking bacon. I mean, if it's adding a stressor, just like, just consider it not like an issue because I'm just not going to do it. But no, I generally bake bacon because, like you said, it's neat and orderly, and you get nice flat slices, and it doesn't splatter all over the oven. And you know, I do know that it is a, you know, safer way to cook it. I mean, you could cook lower temperature, it'll take awhile to bake your bacon. At least 20 minutes, but if you do a lower temperature, it's going to take a lot longer, and especially if you have like a farm bacon where it's thick cut. So you know, it requires a lot of forethought. If that means it stresses you out because you just want to cook it in a pan and take less time, then I just don't think you should worry about it at all. But yeah, so that's really my take on the cooking thing. I'm sure if somebody was like charring all of their food black, maybe it could be something to be concerned about, but unless you're doing that, you know, I think all your advice is good, varying things up. Stews, well, that's a good idea, but yeah. Can we talk about her poop?

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, yeah, oh, yeah.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: We left that part in here. I think maybe I don't really need to talk much about it, but just kind of refer her back to the poop podcast because if you're going maybe every day or every other day, you definitely need to address that issue. You need to be going every day, even, you know, once or twice a day is fine. But definitely at least once a day. So yeah, I'm just going to tell her to go back to listen to the poop podcast because we covered this ad nauseam, didn't we? Didn't I? Talked about poop for at least an hour.

LIZ WOLFE: We, yes, you are the queen of feces.


LIZ WOLFE: You know, I've been noticing something, and this is my dog having had surgery a couple weeks ago, I've been really kind of meticulous about what he's eating and really paying attention to how well he's eliminating and stuff, and what I've noticed is, animals tend to, when they're not stressed, when they're not in stressed situations, they tend to eat and then eliminate. And I think it's really interesting my dog will have two-two good BMs every day right after he eats. And I've heard Sean Croxton has done some interviews on his-on Underground Wellness on his podcast with folks who believe we should be eliminating right after we eat. I don't know whether I agree with that or not because I think, unlike animals, which it does tend to work that way in, you know, well-fed, non-stressed animals, I think with people, we have so much else going on that's kind of affecting our motility. Would that necessarily be possible, but I don't know, Diane. What do you think of that? About whether you should be eliminating right after you're eating or what's that kind of schedule should look like?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Well, I think it depends like, I don't know. I just think it should be a regular schedule for you, and that the quality of the elimination is good. I think transit time is probably more important than the timing of the elimination, but I mean, it makes sense that the elimination might happen closely after a meal because you're basically triggering peristalsis, so that whole digestive motility is kicking in. And it could just stimulate the entire like downstream digestive process. But the reality is, you know, you're not eliminating a meal that's anywhere near something you just ate. It's taking a minimum, hopefully, a minimum of 12 hours. But more likely anywhere from 18 to 24 hours to come out, so you know, if you were to eat breakfast and then go to the bathroom, you're probably eliminating yesterday's breakfast, for example. I don't know, I mean, I think if it just gets motivated for that reason, but I think most kind of cats and dogs have a much shorter digestive tract. I don't know how long. I don't know how long their tract is, or how long their whole-excuse me-how long their whole digestive function takes, but ours should take quite some time. Well, yeah, unless you're eating something you're intolerant to, which in which case it might evacuate really quickly.

LIZ WOLFE: Everybody out!

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Everybody out! You like that?

LIZ WOLFE: There you go. All right.


LIZ WOLFE: Jada. I sort of-I sort of [laughs].


LIZ WOLFE: Oh man. Oh, okay. Jada says: “I sort of have the opposite problem from most. I'm thin and especially thin right now because I’m still nursing my 15 months old. I WANT to keep my weight on but can’t! I’m also still losing a good amount of hair. How can I keep weight on? I don’t get much sleep. My baby still wakes a few times a night but I have a hard time sleeping as it is. I’m only taking fermented cod liver oil. My exercise consists of chasing my kids and we go walk after dinner. Breakfast: coffee and water; Piece of gluten free toast with raw butter/sausage or bacon. Snack: pistachios or olives lunch: salami and cheese, crackers or eat lunch out dinner roasted chicken, veggies and kombucha. I’m wanting to be grain free but worried about getting enough calories.”
Diane, do it.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I always think that that's a funny thing, the whole like, if you're grain free, you won't get enough calories because I'm like, I am getting plenty of calories in…


DIANE SANFILIPPO: without grains. I'm probably getting in enough calories for the both of us, Jada. So what I would…what I would say are probably a couple of easiest ways to get extra calories in. Starches and fats are really the easiest ways to get calories in. Protein, you know, protein is great. I would definitely say, you know, whatever of whole foods you feel like eating more of, eat more of them. But protein is more satiating, so fat…Fat is definitely satiating, but if you're doing it with starch, you can definitely eat a bit more, so I would highly recommend replacing the grain-based, sort of more nutrient poor starches with really nutrient dense starches like sweet potato, butternut squash, any time of squash or some really delicious like winter squashes, acorn squash, that kind of thing. Plantains, bananas, any kind of starch will really help with milk production as well. And help you potentially put on some weight, but what I'd like you to do is bake sweet potatoes and then put your butter or even some coconut oil on top. You can do the same thing if you're like frying some plantains in coconut oil. You can also like cut things, yeah, cut things, those are so good. Cut things into chips and make sweet potato chips. I mean, there are tons of recipes for what to do with sweet potatoes. You can check out Sweet Potato Power, the cookbook is like all about what to do with sweet potatoes as well as kind of how they help your body, but I would definitely look into that as just kind of getting in more calories. It might actually drive some of your appetite, too, because what you're eating right now, we don't have quantities on this, but it looks like mostly little bites of snacks all day. It doesn't look like a lot of food. Maybe that roasted chicken and veggies is like a pretty big serving but we can't really tell right there.
So beyond that, I would just try and really get in the more nutrient dense foods. Eggs, especially the yolks, liver, more starches as I mentioned, coconut products, etc. I think it's great that you're still breastfeeding. I don't know how much longer you will be, you know. Maybe it's around 2 years. I know that that's kind of a time where kids sometimes start to self-wean; I'm not an expert on that. But, you know, if you're potentially going to be breastfeeding for awhile longer, these are also some really good foods for breastfeeding. I might also recommend if you have a blender, like a Magic Bullet or something like that, just making a coconut milk smoothie in the morning, so you're getting a good amount of fat. Add some berries, maybe a banana, and have that alongside a couple of eggs vs. like the toast and bacon. Just doing something that might boost you up a little bit more, calorie-wise. Do you have some thoughts?

LIZ WOLFE: Just a couple. I think that there's actually, and I was just reading about this fairly recently, the idea that a negative calorie basis is actually evolutionary appropriate for a couple different things, but specifically what sticks in my mind is that built in birth control people talk about having while nursing. I would say, if she has time, which it doesn't sound like she does, check out the book Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives. I would also check out anything by Nina Planck, like Real Food For Mother and Baby, especially, you know, it sounds like maybe the kind of Weston A. Price approach might be good for her, although, you know, you and I both advocate getting rid of grains, and that should be fairly easy, especially from a calorie standpoint. But I think anything from Nina Planck might be something she'd like to check out. And I cannot tell you whether or not these are available on Amazon, but there is…there is an option that Amazon has, and it's called Audible, I think it's Audible.com. I've just become a member because I need to be able to be learning and still technically working while I'm doing the other things that I need to do, like keeping myself fed and watered, so I've just gotten a membership to Audible where they have a couple decent nutrition books that you can actually just download and listen to in your spare time, so I've got a couple-a couple different books that are waiting for me the next time I need to mow the yard or fix dinner or whatever, I can have that going. Maybe those books are on audio, so if she can't actually sit down and read a book, she can listen to it while she's chasing the kiddos around.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, I'm a big fan of the audio.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah. Well, actually I saw Good Calories, Bad Calories on Audible, and I unfortunately already waded through that entire volume, which took probably-it's like the machine on Princess Bride. It sucked half my life away, I think.


LIZ WOLFE: It was…


LIZ WOLFE: Some good stuff on there.


LIZ WOLFE: Now why can't I remember what that machine is called. Somebody help me.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I have no idea.

LIZ WOLFE: I watch that movie all the time. Anyway.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I know what you're talking about. I don't remember. Nope.

LIZ WOLFE: I mean, this is just pathetic that I can't remember it. All right, next question from [in her best Andre the Giant's voice] The Great Pirate Roberts. Actually, this is from Brianne. [laughs] All right, Brianne says: “I want to start off by saying how much I enjoy your podcasts. I always learn SOMETHING and it feels like I am listening to my girlfriends chat about nutrition. My real life girlfriends would never indulge me in this, so it is much appreciated!” Thanks, Brianne, that made me smile. [laughs] “My question has to do with how you look on the outside, but before I go any further I want to clarify that I have a great body image.” Brianne has clearly been listening to our…


LIZ WOLFE: “It’s taken me some time to get there, but over the last year or so through CrossFit and going strict Paleo, I have finally come to terms with my body. I am muscular and fit and I will never be described as petite. But I am healthy, I can lift some crazy weight and I feed my body the fuel it needs. I am so grateful that the paleo diet and CrossFit have brought me here. With that being said, I am getting married at the end of October and want to be sure I look my best in preparation for the big day. I have absolutely no desire to drop major pounds or try to look like Heidi Klum for a day. Just want to look and, more importantly, FEEL my best that day. And when I look back at my pictures I want to like them! So do you have any tips for something like this? To make sure I am not bloated, feel my very best etc. Are there foods that are normally acceptable on a paleo diet, but maybe I should steer clear of them for some time leading up to my wedding day? I think this is the one day you can kind of be a little body conscious (within reason of course). I eat pretty strict Paleo and I have been for about a year and half. Breakfast is eggs or organic, nitrate free chicken sausage. Lunch is a big salad with protein. Dinner is protein, like grass-fed beef and spices with Brussels sprouts. Snacks are usually dry, roasted nuts. I work out 4 to 6 times a week, mostly CrossFit, with some yoga and running sprinkled in. I do most WODs with the prescribed weights. I sleep about 8 hours every night. I'm 32, about 5'6, and weight probably around 140-145, though I don't weight myself anymore. I don't find it helpful mentally or physically. If I had to guess my body fat, I would probably be somewhere between 18 and 19%. In terms of supplements, I take vitamin D, calcium, a multi, and fish oil. Thinking of switching to the cod liver oil/butter oil blend once the supply of fish oil is finished. I do indulge in wine occasionally, maybe once or twice a week, or a really good big treat on a very special occasion. I could probably eat less nuts. I really like sweet potato fries.” Just skipping around now. “I know you're both not about losing weight, so I just want to emphasize that I love my body. If I walk down the aisle just the way I am, I'd be fine with it, but if there's anything I can do that is Paleo accepted that will help me look and feel my best on my wedding day, I would love to know.” And it looks like she's done like 30, the whole, like 30 day type Paleo thing, I guess maybe she's not doing wine when she does that. That's the details.
Diane, do you have any commentary on this? uh, oh, Diane?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Oh, sorry. I muted you.

LIZ WOLFE: You muted? Ha-ha.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Well, I muted because there's-there's some lawn people outside, and I thought it might get kind of loud. Sorry. So just a couple of things I'm thinking here, like probably at this point, I wouldn't really worry too much about what she's eating. You know, if she could eat fewer nuts and she's pointing that out, maybe she could do that. The wine and the chocolate, that kind of stuff, when I'm working with someone who's got a really specific goal in a short time frame, I just tell them, you know what? Ditch that stuff for this amount of time, you know? You don't have any idea how much that's really affecting things, especially the wine, I think. Alcohol can really affect your hormones. This is all about like getting your hormones optimized. We're talking about getting any kind of fat loss, but I think it could be useful at this point and I think you have maybe a couple things to say about like nutrient density, so I'm not going to touch on that, but if you're looking at just what you're eating overall, you may want to do some weighing and measuring, just to see like are you overeating, potentially even just a couple of ounces of protein a meal, and again, I wouldn't do that any other time, but you know what, maybe you're eating 8 ounces of protein and you only need 6 to feel satisfied. Maybe you're eating 7 and you only need 5 to feel really satisfied. And that doesn't mean you're, you know, cutting calories severely because we don't want to deplete you at all. We don't want to keep nutrition out of your body, but at some point, you know, if you're eating an extra, you know, 3 to 500 calories a day that you didn't really need, you were just eating it because it tasted good, it was there, what have you. You know, that could be the difference over the course of a month of just a few pounds that you might be able to shed away. You know, for general health, so what? You know, eat, eat what makes you happy, if you're at a good weight, whatever, don't stress about it. But if you are trying to dial things in, you may really need to be more aware of exactly, you know, sort of-excuse me-how much is coming in. That's what I think. I'm going to mute you again because it's loud.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah. You're going to mute me again. Yeah, so I agree with you, Diane, and we probably would not answer this question the way we are answering it if Brianne had not assured us that she had a great body image, that she was taking care of herself, and fueling herself for the level of activity and appreciating the things that her body is capable of. But you know, I get it. I get this is the wedding, you know, short term, not that big a deal. The mentality seems to be in place, so I feel like we can answer this question without sending her into like this tailspin of body image hell. So what I would say is, if you are looking at doing a little bit of reining in of some of the substrate that you're eating; reining in a little bit of caloric load for a very short term or doing that cyclically, that was the way you chose to deal with it, maybe in a cyclic, ketogenic type of manner, although that probably wouldn't be too well. It probably wouldn't mesh with the type of CrossFit that you're doing. So obviously I think you will need to kind of manage and strategize your carbohydrate intake, but I just think the biggest focus anybody that's inclined to rein these things in in any way is to look at nutrients first. It is not about-yeah, I think that there is kind of a sufficiency signal that you send your body when you're really giving it nutrients, fat-soluble vitamins, minerals. Your body kind of, I think, will respond a little bit better. This is really anecdotal. I don't have any kind of literature to back this up, but I think that that's really kind of the case, so I would say, liver, sardines, some fresh vegetables, you know, potentially based on your level of activity, some starchy stuff. I really, you know, want you to make sure you're getting enough vitamin C. Tons of broth, sometimes with butter, add some butter in there. Cod liver oil, maybe a teaspoon of red palm oil here and there. fresh lemon juice in water, kombucha. Just look at nutrients and where to get them rather than looking at a little less of this or a little less of that. Look at those nutrients first, and I, Diane, you and I have talked a little bit about this, texting each other. I have been doing a lot of actually raw liver and I'm absolutely loving it. I know it sounds probably a little bit crazy, but in…there's some suggestions out there that raw liver has kind of an energetic factor that is not necessarily, you know, recognized conventionally, but in the same way that raw, grass-fed butter has what's generally termed the Wulzen Factor, kind of the anti-fatigue type of factor that's in the liver is kind of analogous to that. But I'm doing, basically pureeing partially frozen liver and just kind of making it into almost like a pate type of thing, and refreezing it. Really easy to cut into little, little chunks, if you're not wanting to actually eat raw liver. You know, if you're not wanting to just take it straight out of the, you know, out of the carcass and take a bite out of it, like in Dances with Wolves or something.


LIZ WOLFE: Just freeze it, take a couple little liver pill type things, you know, in the morning. I think that has served me really, really well, and what I'm actually doing right now is kind of a skin, a skin nutrient type of load because I really want to be able to give people some dietary recommendations that are really, really targeted for short-term, kind of skin interventions. People ask me a lot about skin care; it's one of those things that I'm pretty passionate about and one of the things that has brought a lot of traffic to my blog in the past, so I want to be able to give people some better recommendations and stuff that I've experimented with and tried. And it's really that approach has benefitted me in many other ways as well from the amount of energy I have to my outlook. So I'm really into just being a nutrient-seeker right now and that's where I kind of land on this. Anything else from you, Diane?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: No, I mean, I think like that perspective makes total sense when people are eating refined foods and they tend to eat a lot more because their cells are starving for nutrients. And when you strip away, you know, the whole macro-nutrient perspective and look at the micronutrients that we need to be eating and you realize that that's what your cells use to feel satiated, that's really kind of-that's really what you're talking about with that nutrient density and that you can do that with fewer calories, potentially, and it doesn't mean calorie cutting. It doesn't mean skimping on foods, but it just means you may actually feel great and you know, satisfied and be giving your body everything it needs with a few hundred, you know, fewer calories, but the foods that you just eaten are so so nutrient dense, but like you're fine, you're doing a great job.
I think, you mentioned something, too, about a ketogenic approach and I guess it's worth mentioning, too, since you're talking about something that's working for you right now, and I've mentioned it many times before, but like a ketogenic approach worked really well for me in the past. It sounds like she's got a really balanced mindset and that's great. You know, it is something she could look at trying for two months, you know. It's not something that works very quickly. It often takes a little bit of time to work. But you could do really low carb, you know, under 30 grams of carbs a day-ish, and you'd have to cut out metabolic conditioning. So you know, I think she's probably balanced enough in her mindset to know that like if she wants to keep training, she probably can't be too extreme with her way of eating, but, you know, lifting heavy and walking is perfectly adequate on a very low carbohydrate diet, so it's just another approach, and it does work really well to lean you out. You do lose a bunch of water weight and it can be really effective. So, you know, it's something else that can be considered.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, I think the nutrient loading is particularly appropriate for folks that really do like that CrossFit and that metabolic conditioning and are really active because that type of stress response, even if it makes you feel good, it is a stress response. Can be pretty depleting, so anyway…All right.


LIZ WOLFE: For sure. All right, next one from Marie: “Why would ginger, and now possibly garlic, make my stomach feel like its imploding for hours after I ingest it? It’s hard to even describe the type of pain. Nausea plus a cross between burning, and a similar to menstrual cramping, but not like heartburn. This seemed to start about 1.5 years ago. I can’t put it down to anything specific happening because everything was wrong with me. Too many auto-immune issues with way to many symptoms to list. Is it just another ‘allergy’ caused by leaky gut? If so, will it clear up so I could eat it in the future? Also In the same vein, will I be able to tolerate small amounts of nightshades after I've ‘healed’? I've been Paleo for nearly 3 months, gluten free for over a year, no dairy, no nightshades. Allergies, arthritis, fibromyalgia. Currently testing for nut reaction, no wine. Gives her migraines, low exercise. Yoga is my top speed. Sleep is erratic, 4 to 8 hours a night, and usually broken. I take an herbal sleep blend and magnesium maleate at night. Daily, I take St. John's blend called Mood, True Calm, and Anxiety blend, gingko biloba, vitamin D3, Zyrtec, still have allergies though I was able to stop taking Claritin, too. Fish oil and CoQ10 both are recent additions.” What are your thoughts, Diane?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I really only have a couple of thoughts on this because she has a lot of information, but her main question is about the ginger and garlic. I know that garlic and onions, so ginger could really just be kind of like jumping on the boat, I don't know. She hasn't said if ginger does it on its own, so I'm not really sure. But if those things are irritating, it could be like either a FODMAP intolerance; ginger isn't, I don't think ginger is a FODMAP; garlic is, onions are. A FODMAP intolerance…I actually know a lot of people who right after eating garlic or onion pretty much run to the bathroom. It could be a small intestinal bacterial overgrowth issue. We can link you…I think there's a SIBOInfo.com or .org-there's a website all about that. You can read more about it. And it could be a bacterial imbalance in your gut. Most of your gut flora should pretty much be staying in the large intestine. Sometimes it gets overgrown in the small intestine. You do have some in your stomach as well, but sometimes the sort of valve that keeps your small intestine kind of closed off from either end just are weak for whatever reason. Obviously, we have a lot of other stressors and digestive issues that could be going on, so bacteria could get into your small intestine where it really shouldn't be living. So that can cause that problem. And really what's happening is that the bacteria are trying to digest these foods and they shouldn't be, like the food should hit the small intestine and then there should not be bacteria in there, so…or it should be at a lower rate, not overgrown, as it would be in the case of bacterial overgrowth. So…or you could just be intolerant to those foods. She didn't really say much about like why is it now garlic? I don't know when or how long…since a year and half ago? So like sometimes this happens as a result of international travel. We get a gut pathogen. Something just changes the landscape of our gut. It could have been a serious infection that she had at that point. Or a very serious stress. As crazy as it sounds, I know people who may be like, you know, they've gone through a death in the family, a divorce, the ending of a serious relationship somehow, and that stress could really change the whole landscape of the gut. So it could just be, you know, working with a practitioner to do some stool testing potentially. I think there's something going on there.

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, and I'm curious about…

DIANE SANFILIPPO: That's all I got.

LIZ WOLFE: whether she's talking her stomach or her intestines. You know, sometimes people will say “my stomach hurts” but it's like, it's not so much their stomach as their gut. I'm looking back at her question here. I mean, she says “cramping, but not like heartburn.” So I'm like, I'm thinking, all right, is it in your uterus? Is it in your stomach? Where exactly is it?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, I mean, if it's like low stomach acid, if it's up higher, if it's like an upper GI thing, you know, some general digestive support could generally help it. Ginger is usually really calming to the digestion, so that's a really interesting one.

LIZ WOLFE: You know sometimes we see kind of clients who, I don't know, I tend to use the word “switch” like sympathetic/parasympathetically switched, where you can't always-you basically kind of getting an opposite reaction than what you would -what you should be getting from whatever stimulus you're giving yourself almost like when we talk about people with an altered adrenal profile. It's just the exact opposite of what's supposed to be happening is happening.


LIZ WOLFE: I think that overall, this continuing healing protocol for as long as you can stand it is a great idea. I personally-I may have said this before, but things that I used to not be able to tolerate, 4 years later, I actually can tolerate. It doesn't mean that I eat them. I mean, I'm talking things like bread, you know, gluten exposure, stuff like that. Things that used to destroy me don't do so much anymore because I've spent a lot of time doing my best to really intensively heal. So I think a healing protocol is always a good idea, especially when it's something that you can't necessarily nail down to one causative thing. I do want to throw out there if she's taking a vitamin D3, I'm really liking the vitamin D3 drops from Thorne. You can get them on Amazon. They're emulsified, I guess, basically in medium chain triglycerides, and there's nothing else in there. I think, I'm really not caught up on my Paleo Solution podcast right now, but I believe that Robb may have tackled this at some point. It's important not to get the tablets of vitamin D3. It's important to get some kind of emulsified drop or a gel cap. This is something that I got from Mat LaLonde's workshop at CrossFit Academy of Lions, and it seems to really, really be more effective for folks. So Amazon, you can get the Thorne drops-T-H-O-R-N-E. They also have a blend that I believe is vitamin D and vitamin K2 in a drop form, which I-

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Is she not doing-is she not doing the cod liver oil/butter oil? Because I feel like that's, you know, we're getting some D in there and…

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, yeah.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: That's-I mean, I definitely can tell that like what I used to notice from taking vitamin D, I actually…when I used to take it as capsules, I did-I could tell the difference. Generally it was my skin that I was looking for a difference in, and I could really tell when I was even taking the capsules, but I did find even at like Whole Foods, I think Carlson's had a vitamin D in MCT oil as well. So it is available in some stores, too.


DIANE SANFILIPPO: But I just find that like doing the cod liver oil/butter oil, I don't know that I'm-I want to like double up on the vitamin D, but do you think? I don't know. Plus it's summer. You take extra or what?

LIZ WOLFE: Oh, [xxx] I think it's fine. Yeah, there's a little bit of back and forth, and I'm trying to figure this out a little bit better what kind of vitamin D we're actually looking at in the cod liver oil and salmon and stuff like that. Whether it's something that you-whether it's the same thing you would get from the sun or whether it's different. I think it's different…

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I feel like it has to be different. I mean, if we're getting it from food vs. the sun…

LIZ WOLFE: I believe it's like [xxx], too. Exactly, and there's a whole range of like secosteroids in that whole vitamin D family. It's not all cholecaciferol or vitamin D3 or whatever. So I do think, and me personally, and I think you, too, Diane, we both do a little bit of quote therapeutic tanning. [laughs] I do spend some time just controlled-with controlled sun exposure leading into the summer as I get ready to be outside a little bit more. I get plenty of cholesterol to get that going. I think that a D supplement is less ideal than what we would actually want people to be getting, which is, like you said, from the cod liver oil, from oily, coldwater fish, and from the sun.


LIZ WOLFE: And varied exposure. Word. Word.


LIZ WOLFE: All right, keep going? I've got a couple more here. Finish these up?

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Quickies? Any of them quickies?

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, we can make them quick. Sorry about that. All right, next question, from Christina: “Made the change to Paleo nutrition in February 2011 for my family (2 adults, a boy, 9, a girl, 5) with 95% adherence; some candy and Oreos still exist. Everybody has seen amazing results with asthma, sleeping, activity, weight loss and gain (as needed) and cholesterol levels, except my son who has eczema. After two ER visits for severe allergic reactions and multiple blood tests by two allergists, we have learned he is allergic to coconut, mustard, sunflower seeds and all tree nuts. I was using coconut oil and flour at the start, then stopped, however we still use almond flour since he can tolerate it, and we see some control of the eczema. My son is 4ft & 48 lbs at 9 yrs old. We would like to get better control of his eczema and put some weight on. What kind of Dr do I need to look for or can you recommend in Michigan to support our Paleo living..” Wait, is MI Michigan?


LIZ WOLFE: MN is Minnesota. All right, “To support our Paleo living and get his gut healed and eczema suppressed? Or is this something we can do online? Thanks. Christina.”

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Well, the two places I would send her to look for a doctor potentially: Paleo Physician's Network or PrimalDocs.com, either one of those. But generally, like…can you hear that outside? It's really loud. I hope not. Generally when you're looking at eczema and food allergies. I mean, obviously, you've already figured out that this all coming from his gut. I would get rid of nuts altogether. Even if you're trying to do the replacing thing and you're gotten rid of coconut flour, if you're trying to fix this eczema, I would just keep away any, even the almond flour, all of that stuff. I have a whole protocol in my book for healing a leaky gut. I have also a, you know, sort of add and avoid list for digestive health in terms of like a meal plan, and generally what that includes is, you know, getting rid of any potential gut irritants here, so like I said, getting rid of the rest of those nuts. No seeds. I would, you know, do what we have recommended in the past for, you know, even for adults, same for kids, getting the bone broth in, some glutamine powder potentially, and I would look into getting some kid level probiotics for him. That could really change the entire landscape of things. Just a gut flora imbalance can be a really big problem with eczema as well, but yeah, I would check out the Paleo Physicians Network, Primal Docs. In terms of like what kind of doctor would it be, it's really tough to know. A lot of times, it's even going to be like a chiropractor who happens to know a lot more about gut health. So, you know, maybe search around on something like Yelp or some other review site and just see if you can find other information there. Or, you know, you might be able to find something on like, the Robb Wolf forum on RobbWolf.com. There are forums there, so you could see if, you know, anyone's had this experience with their kid and get some help there.

LIZ WOLFE: Yup. I had eczema on and off for a long time, especially when I was little and usually the conventional thing you look at is food allergies, but definitely an autoimmune like, gut healing protocol is a good idea. GAPS treatment, you might want to look at that. Evening primrose oil, you can rub that into the skin topically. That's something I got from the Weston A. Price Foundation website. I would go to WestonAPrice.org and actually just type in eczema, see what they have to say. They're going to have a whole lot of different kinds of holistic approaches in skin stuff. Yeah.


LIZ WOLFE: Throw some cod liver oil and butter oil in there too. I just find that it's just so good for kids, if you can get them to take it.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, we've got a lot of parents are saying their kids…a lot of them, their kids are even asking for it, so…

LIZ WOLFE: Yeah, they like it.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: you'd be surprised.

LIZ WOLFE: All right, last one. Keely says: “Our family has been doing the Paleo diet for a little over 2 months and we all feel great! My only problem is that my psoriasis is worse than ever. I have suffered from scalp psoriasis for most of my life. The only times that it has cleared is when I am pregnant. I figured that is would get better since we're eating so clean. I do not want to take medication or put chemicals on my skin, so I am wondering what my other options could be? Thank you!”
I don't know a huge amount about psoriasis. I dealt with it a little bit, but I think it's probably subclinical. You might want to look at some kind of apple cider vinegar rinse. Some kind of pH changing or pH balancing type of approach topically. So now I'm trying to think what else…vitamin A, like from cod liver oil/butter oil blend, it's kind of not consistently associated with an improvement in psoriasis specifically, but I think it definitely can't hurt. Maybe a little bit of vitamin D therapy. I don't know. Do you have anything on that? You can even put vitamin D like topically, topical zinc, stuff like that.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Yeah, zinc, even. Just like kind of the standard stuff that we would really say for anyone with the whole gut healing thing, and we've definitely covered this in a lot of different podcasts, but I would, you know, I would be a little bit of a detective on whether or not something you're eating might still contain gluten, just in case. Gluten can be a really nasty trigger for psoriasis. I know people who, you know, eliminate it, clears up, add it back, it comes right back. So I would just be careful and see if there is anything you are eating that might still have gluten in it or if you're just kind of like, dabbling, you know, once a week, once every two weeks with gluten. That might not be okay for you. And then, you know, what a clean Paleo diet does that's great is take you through the first step of what's known as a 4R Protocol. And that first step is to remove any irritating foods and so it's great that you do that, but in order to really heal your gut, you need to go through the next couple of steps, which are to repair the gut and reinoculate the gut. So, you know, the broth and the glutamine, just keeping your stress level down, supporting your digestive function. That will all really help as well as looking at probiotic foods: sauerkraut, kimchi, even some, you know, grass-fed yogurt. These you could even make at home, or kombucha. And really getting those other stages in because if you're still dealing with the condition, you may like, you may have gone 80% of the way with the food changes, but really getting the repair and the reinoculation done, that should really help a lot, too.
But stress can really make psoriasis flare up. Any skin conditions, like even, you know, Liz and I both kind of talked about our skin and like acne and controlling it, that kind of thing, and I, for a long time, was like, oh, it's totally hormonal, it's totally hormonal, which I do think it's hormonal for me to a degree, just because of where it shows up, but I was so stressed in the last few weeks, and this last week my skin cleared up so much just from that drop in stress. Obviously, I've also, you know, been taking my cod liver oil/butter oil blend. I put the Beauty Balm on my face and I mean, it's just been pretty miraculous, even in the last week, just the texture and everything, so just watching your stress levels will really, really help that. And that's it.

LIZ WOLFE: The other thing I would add to that, and this is kind of-this might be a little bit out there, a little bit hokey, but in reading this question, and this is absolutely no like, I'm not saying this, I hope Keely doesn't take offense at this, but Keely used 4 question marks at the very end of her question, so what I'm kind of seeing here, and this is just totally random…a lot of times, folks with psoriasis and some skin conditions that can be associated with almost like an overactive metabolism, like you're kind of running at a really high frequency, which is a little bit, you know, not so much Western, that's a little bit Eastern, a little bit, you know, I don't know, little hokey, but it is kind of associated with that. So I can't help but wonder that, kind of tied in with stress reduction and stuff like that, if Keely could kind of incorporate some counter-balancing, some kind of low frequency, low and slow type of meditation and activity, and try and maybe counter-balance what may potentially be a very energetic and active metabolism and personality, as I'm reading into just because of the fact she used 4 question marks at the end of the question, but that might be something to look at. I think maybe acupuncturists would be clued into that a little bit more than I am.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: I think it's totally valid to read into that. I have a-well, I had a client today who came to me, and she had her food journals, and we like sat down to talk and at the end of it, I was like, I don't think you need nutrition coaching. I think you need like the life coaching aspect. Like she, I mean, like so stressed, just so so stressed, touching her face, touching legs. And I just was like, I just want to give her a hug for an hour because she's like so stressed out, you know? I'm like, okay, what can we do?

LIZ WOLFE: Charge an exorbitant rate for an hour long hugs.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: No, but like, I mean, I just, you know when, and a lot of times, too, like people, you know, work with other practitioners and I know that some people come to me and go to someone else, and people go to someone else and then come to me, and it's all about finding…I think you just have to find sort of like, as corny as that sounds, too, like that magic moment, when you hit the right practitioner at the right time for you because you'll hit someone else who's much more clinical than I am, and you know, maybe you'll do great with that for awhile, and then maybe you'll be like, okay, I just need someone to like be nice to me, and hold my hand, and tell me it's going to be okay. For as much as people think I'm like such a hard ass sometimes, like I'm really like forgiving of people and try and let them really understand when they just need to be nicer to themselves, and I know it's a lesson I, you know, need to teach myself as well, just because I try and do a lot, but you know, anyway, long story short, personality and the way that we handle stress just goes so far with all this stuff, and we just can't undervalue and underestimate how much stress is pretty much causing a lot of our ailments, so…
Let's write a gratitude list and sing Kumbaya and take a nap. I'm going to go take a nap.

LIZ WOLFE: Yes, everybody who's listening who's still with us at this point at an hour and ten minutes, you have to pick one, or do two out of three, write a gratitude list, take a nap, or sing Kumbaya.


LIZ WOLFE: Report back.


LIZ WOLFE: All right, lady.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: All right, that's it.

LIZ WOLFE: Peace out.

DIANE SANFILIPPO: Til next week.


Click here to submit questions.

Diane & Liz

Comments 9

  1. Hey guys, I’m the John from the first question. Thanks for taking my question. Unfortunately, I think you are right as far as the “you can lead a horse to water…” side.

    Couple of follow up questions.
    You mentioned “bone broths” which is something I’ve heard from other sources too. Is there something distinctive to know about “bone broths” compared to just buying a quality broth at the store?

    She says she can’t eat “all that fat” I think that is really just the lifetime of low-fat propoganda but is fat harder to digest for someone with gut problems?

    1. Yes, MINERAL CONTENT! You can’t use store-bought stock/broth to get health benefits. I have a recipe here on the blog for it- just search “broth recipe,” it’s REALLY easy to make.

      Fat isn’t an issue for someone with “gut” problems, but if her gallbladder isn’t working, then she may feel discomfort when eating more fat. It’s more likely a mental picture of how much fat is appropriate rather than a problem digesting it. You can let her know that “all that fat” is simply what’s naturally occurring without avoiding it, she doesn’t need to add lots of extra to foods. Be sensitive to her food choices and portion desires, but guide her to real, whole foods. Use my “paleo foods” guide in the resources section of this site. If she has arguments against eating only real, whole, unprocessed foods, well, that’s not something I know how to explain to someone– simple logic about what’s real food and what isn’t.

  2. I read the last question about scalp psoriasis. I’ve had it since I was 8 or 9 (31 now). The best controls I have found are sunlight (just a little, you don’t want skin cancer on your scalp!) and a vinegar rinse in the shower. I keep a gallon of plain white vinegar next to my tub, and I have a plastic cup into which I pour about 1/2 c white vinegar before I get in the shower. At the end of the shower, while the water is still on, I add about 1 – 1.5 c of water from the showerhead (i.e. warm) and pour the rinse over my scalp.

    My hair is pretty darn shiny.

    Caveats: if you shaved your legs or exfoliated, you’ll get a little sting for a minute. Just let the shower water wash it away; it’ll go away, I promise. I also hold one hand like a sunvisor over my forehead while I pour the liquid – my eyes are really sensitive!

    If you are into natural remedies, you may be interested in Edgar Cayce readings – he has a lot of ideas for psoriasis.

    I also steer clear of shampoos and conditioners which contain proteins – these ingredients seem to exacerbate my psoriasis. The products I use are the solid shampoos and the solid Jungle conditioner from Lush (www.lush.com).

  3. In the podcast you mention a site about gut health but my sound quality isn’t high enough to be able to hear it clearly, it sounded like sido.org or something like that but it isn’t can you please post the link? I have a friend that could benefit from this information. This was in relation to ? #5

    1. Eric, I think we website you want is:

      (It’s SIBO – small intestine bacterial overgrowth. The person behind the site is Dr. Allison Seibecker, an expert on the topic. I think Sean Croxton did a podcast with her on his Underground Wellness show. You can get it for free from iTunes. Actually, I just looked on her website, and she has links to *all* the interviews she’s done — under the “Learning More” tab. Just scroll down and you’ll see interviews/podcasts.)

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