Adrenal Health

Case Study: A Functional Approach to Hormones and Gut

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How Functional Health Coaching Treats Mood, Gut and Hormones in an Integrated Way

The Symptoms

When Emily joined our coaching program, she was struggling with depression, anxiety, fatigue, and brain fog. She said that she did not have the energy to improve her diet or exercise regimen to support her health. She feared that trying to make major changes could have the potential to elicit panic attacks that would prevent her from moving forward.

Photo by Jason Briscoe

Photo by Jason Briscoe

Emily felt “tired almost all of the time.” Up until a few years before joining our functional coaching program, she had lived an active life. She had spent years gaining her education and working as a public health professional. And, at 38-years-old, she found herself barely making it through the day.

Emily had resorted to some of the most common coping mechanisms available: coffee in the morning to give her enough energy to get going, and alcohol at night to help her sleep.

Emily had resorted to some of the most common coping mechanisms available: coffee in the morning to give her enough energy to get going, and alcohol at night to help her sleep.

She suffered from symptoms of gas, bloating and indigestion. Her symptoms eased when she was strict about her diet but returned whenever she wavered slightly. 

The First Steps

The first thing we advised Emily to do was to take the huge step of removing coffee and alcohol from her diet. Within a matter of a couple of weeks, she was amazed at how much better she felt, just from those small changes. While this is not always as impactful for everybody as it was for Emily, it does show that sometimes a couple of small tweaks can have big effects.

The Labs

As Emily made those early changes to diet, we ran a handful of functional labs, including:

  • DUTCH Complete hormone panel

  • Comprehensive thyroid panel

  • GI-Map stool pathogen test

  • Micronutrient (vitamin and mineral) test.

The Test Results

The test results showed that Emily was quite deficient in the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is the primary stress hormone but it is also responsible for providing a sense of energy and plays an important role in regulating the circadian rhythms controlling sleep/wake cycles.

Emily was also very low in all of her female sex hormones (the estrogens and progesterone) and she was also very low in melatonin, a hormone that helps promote restful sleep.

Emily's thyroid appeared to be slightly sluggish and she was deficient in seven different important micronutrients.

Her stool test detected two different parasites, an overgrowth of two different opportunistic yeast species, suppressed immune response in the small intestines, and a very strong sensitivity to gluten-containing foods.

Part of the Hormone Report

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Stool Test Results

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The Protocol

Emily remained free from coffee and alcohol and began to adopt a gluten-free diet.

She started doing moderate exercise, managing her stress levels, eradicating gut pathogens through an herbal protocol, and supporting her healthy hormone balance through diet, herbs, and lifestyle changes.

She introduced some herbal tinctures such as black cohosh, red clover, vitex, and motherwort to support her female hormone levels. She used a product called Adrenotone from Designs for Health to support the adrenal glands and the balance of stress hormone production through the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.

Emily supported her micronutrient balance through the introduction of a complete mineral support formula and used the Designs for Health GI Microb-X product as one of the antimicrobial blends for eradicating infectious microorganisms. She also introduced Megaspore probiotic to rebuild beneficial gut flora and to support the immune system. 

For dietary support, Emily began seed cycling and introduced more healthy fats into her diet. She also incorporated detoxification strategies such as dry brushing and rebounding into her daily routine to help her move toxins out of the body in a natural way.

The Transformation

Photo by Patrick Hendry

Photo by Patrick Hendry

As Emily gained energy, she was able to reintegrate exercise into her life and she enjoys mountain biking and outdoor sports of many kinds.

After six months on the coaching program, Emily reported feeling better than she had in years despite experiencing some extreme stress, including the sudden death of her partner’s mother.

Over the course of her six months on the program, Emily gained enough energy and mental clarity to make big decisions about her life, including the purchase of a new home and a desire to have a baby.

Emily is now thriving, pregnant, happy in her life, and excited about her future.

 

 

Are You Ready for Your Transformation?

Work With Us!

We would be honored to work with you as a private client. We provide testing and coaching options to women in most every state and country. Come check out our coaching options to see if it’s a fit.

Essential Oils that Balance Sleep, Mood and More with Jodi Cohen

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Jodi Cohen is the founder of Vibrant Blue Oils, an essential oils company, and the best selling author of "Healing with Essential Oils". She's a nutritional therapist and essential oils expert. In this episode we talk about the nervous system and how to get into parasympathetic rest mode, getting a good night's sleep, the adrenal glands, and histamine.

Here's what you'll hear:

Min 01:35 Introducing Jodi Cohen
Min 03:25 Jodi's health history
Min 08:40 Essential oil formulas
Min 11:00 How essential oils work
Min 17:45 Jodi's first approach to helping clients: improving sleep
Min 22:55 Mold & clearing the sinuses
Min 23:40 Melotonin and how it detoxifies
Min 25:40 Effects of stress on the body
Min 28:50 The adrenals & HPA
Min 34:10 Detoxifying estrogen
Min 35:45 Using binders
Min 38:40 Mood adjustment with essential oils
Min 45:15 Histamine balance for air cleaning
Min 46:05 Jodi Cohen's essential oils
Min 48:30 Jodi's resources

To learn more about Jodi Cohen, visit her website here and follow her on social media:
Facebook page 
Facebook discussion group 
Pinterest 
Twitter 
Instagram 
YouTube 

Resources:

Buy essential oils 10% off using the code "womenswellness"
Leaky Gut Solutions interview with Kiran Krishnan
Free gift: Download a free chapter of Jodi's book, Healing with Essential Oils

Here's the video version of the interview with Jodi Cohen:

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you have not yet joined our community, be sure take our "Is a Gut Infection Causing Your Hormonal Imbalance" quiz here, and come on board!

We have lots of valuable, free resources for women's health we share weekly.

Bridgit Danner,

Founder of Women's Wellness Collaborative

Fixing Chronic Fatigue with Shelley Gawith

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Shelley Gawith is a Functional Nutritionist in private practice in Wellington, New Zealand. She completed Nutritional Therapy Association studies, IHS Advanced Functional Assessment Training, and is a Certified Gluten Practitioner. In this episode we talk about adrenal health, her amazing health history, and her work in helping busy career women overcome fatigue & anxiety.

Here's what you'll hear:

Min 01:30 Introducing Shelley Gawith's work
Min 04:25 Shelley's health journey with chronic fatigue syndrome
Min 08:30 Shelley's steps to getting better
Min 12:10 Cellular energy & adrenal health
Min 16:40 Root causes of Shelley's health problems
Min 21:45 Work stress & its effects on the adrenals
Min 26:50 Shelley's advice for career women
Min 36:50 Hydrochloric acid
Min 39:05 Gulping water but getting dehydrated
Min 42:30 Using electrolytes
Min 47:40 Shelley's resources

To learn more about Shelley, visit her website here and follow her on social media:
Facebook
Instagram 


Resources:

Check out our summit recordings and programs at our shop.
31 Day Challenge 
Beautycounter products - non-toxic line of beauty products

Here's the video version of the interview with Shelley Gawith:

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you have not yet joined our community, be sure take our "Is a Gut Infection Causing Your Hormonal Imbalance" quiz here, and come on board!

We have lots of valuable, free resources for women's health we share weekly.

Bridgit Danner,

Founder of Women's Wellness Collaborative

Hormone Balance After 40 Part 1 with Dr. Ronda Nelson

Dr. Ronda Nelson is a functional nutritionist who works with thyroid, endocrine and digestive issues. She’s our guest this week and we're talking about hormones and menopause.

Click here to download an mp3 of "Hormone Balance After 40 Part 1 with Dr. Ronda Nelson."

Hormone Balance After 40 Summit

BUY the Hormone Balance After 40 Summit package here!

Hear 32 expert lectures on improving metabolism, balancing moods, increasing sex drive and more! And if you want to OWN the material, the summit sales package is on sale now for $79 pre-summit, $97 during the summit, and rising to $129 after the summit.  The package includes notes of each talk too and over $800 in bonuses! Please click here to learn more...

Here's what you'll hear: 

Min 02:00 Introduction to Dr. Ronda Nelson & her practice

Min 06:45 Dr. Ronda healing her daughter's cancer

Min 11:40 Root causes & generational risks

Min 13:50 Lifestyle factors while entering menopause

Min 17:20 Supporting the adrenal glands

Min 18:10 Weight gain and adrenal dysfunction

Min 25:45 Estrogen (E2, E1 & E3)

Min 28:50 Forgetfulness in perimenopausal women

Min 32:50 Tribulus herb & how it works

Min 35:15 Vaginal dryness and Dr. Ronda's recommended remedies

Min 41:00 Bio-identical hormones & their effects

Min 47:40 Lab tests for hormone overdose & taking a woman out of bio-identical hormones

To learn more about Dr. Ronda Nelson, you can visit her website here and follow her on social media:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

YouTube

Pinterest

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you have not yet joined our community, be sure to grab our hidden Hormone stressors quiz here, and come on board!

Spark Case Review

Click here to learn about our Spark Case Review for help with auto-immunity and digestive health.  

Hormone Balance After 40 Summit

BUY the Hormone Balance After 40 Summit package here!

Hear 32 expert lectures on improving metabolism, balancing moods, increasing sex drive and more! And if you want to OWN the material, the summit sales package is on sale now for $79 pre-summit, $97 during the summit, and rising to $129 after the summit.  The package includes notes of each talk too and over $800 in bonuses! Please click here to learn more...

 

Thanks for listening,

Bridgit Danner, Founder of Women's Wellness Collaborative

Support These Three Systems for Smoother Peri-menopause

We'll focus on three systems to support the most while in peri-menopause.

1. Balance Your Blood Sugar

This tip is HUGE for peri-menopause, so pay close attention.  When you were younger, you could maybe get away with late-night pizza or drinking binges.  You body is much less forgiving at this age, which you probably already realized.  

You don’t want to gain weight, feel cloudy, or sleep poorly, but, if your like most of us, you want to have you cake and eat it too.

It’s super important to keep your blood sugar balanced to prevent the symptoms of peri-menopause.  Spikes and dips in your blood sugar create an additional stress on your body, and your body is already going through the stress of changing hormones.  

These spikes and dips in your blood sugar also make you cranky, craving carbs and gaining weight.  Sugars also feed the unhealthy bacteria in your gut, and you need a healthy gut to clear old hormones and to make chemicals that make you feel good.

Here’s my best tip for blood sugar: start the day with low sugar and high protein and fiber.  When you start you day this way, you will have less cravings and make better choices.  

Some options:

2.  Love Your Adrenals

Your adrenals are two glands in your lower back that make hormones for energy and stress.  They also make some female hormones (sex hormones) and you rely on them more as your ovarian function declines.

Your adrenals make hormones for stress, energy and sex.  You probably want lots of energy and great sex, but less stress. So create less stress in your life.  

Now, you probably think of stress as being stuck in traffic and late for an important appointment.  That is stressful.  But stress to your body comes in lots of other forms too, like: 

  • The blood sugar spikes and dips we discussed
  • The late nights of work
  • The stress of caring for kids or elderly parents
  • Chronic pain
  • Eating low-quality foods or inflammatory foods

This list could be longer, but I’ll stop here and give you tip #2 to love your adrenals. Get to bed by 10 PM, take rest breaks during the day, and have fun!

3. Support Detox Pathways

To have hormone balance, you need to clear toxins. Excess hormones re-circulating in your blood stream, or toxins that mimic hormones can lead to peri-menopause symptoms.

Today we’ll talk about two mechanisms that clear toxins and how to support them: the liver and the digestive tract.

The liver is the best known detox organ, for good reason.  It breaks down toxins and used hormones into a form that can be eliminated.  To support the liver, eat foods that contain the nutrients your liver needs to do its tasks.

Some liver-loving foods include: pasture-raised eggs, beets, carrots, lemon, broccoli, chard, dandelion, cabbage, onions and garlic.

Once toxins and used hormones are broken down, they need to be eliminated from the body.  The main exit route is the digestive tract.  If you are constipated or have an inflamed digestive tract, these waste products may not be eliminated.  

Natural sources of fat, such as coconut oil, olive oil, nuts, seeds, avocados, unprocessed meats and fish, are needed by the gallbladder to make the bile that the toxins travel with from the liver to the digestive tract.

Once in the digestive tract, keep your bowels moving with regular exercise and drinking plenty of water.  Reduce inflammation by avoiding inflammatory foods such as sugar, alcohol, gluten and processed dairy products.

Please take one tip from above and get started!

Love these tips?  Want to learn more?  

Learn more about peri-menopause from experts like Ann Louise Gittleman, Dr. Anna Cabeca and Tana Amen at the free, online Hormone Balance After 40 Summit!  

The summit happens live June 5-11, 2017, but recordings will live on after the live summit.

REGISTER HERE.

You’ll hear 30+ experts on the topics like: 

• Boosting your Metabolism

• Reclaiming your Sex Drive

• Restoring Mental Clarity.  

The best part is that it’s all free and you can attend online from any computer or smartphone.  Register here for your own Hormone Balance After 40!

Contributed by Bridgit Danner, LAc, FDNP, founder of Women’s Wellness Collaborative

The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution with Dr Aviva Romm

Dr. Aviva Romm is a Yale-trained medical doctor, MD, mid-wife, herbalist and the author of the new book "The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution". The book outlines the root causes of Survival Overdrive Syndrome (SOS), and guides you through a natural, holistic plan to reverse it, and rescue your metabolism, hormones, immunity, mind and mood. This book comes out today 31/01/2017.

Click here to download an mp3 of “The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution with Dr Aviva Romm”

Subscribe to Our Podcast

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Here's what you'll hear:

Min 02:50 Aviva Romm's history

Min 06:30 Aviva's clinical experience with women and auto-immune diseases

Min 12:40 Survival Overdrive Syndrome (SOS) and the science that connects the immune system with the hormone system

Min 17:00 The three levels of adrenal thyroid revolution for women

Min 22:30 The 5 root causes of adrenal and thyroid dysfunction

Min 26:20 The Epstein-Bar virus (EBV) and Hashimotos

Min 35:30 Aviva's 4-week plan to heal adrenals and support thyroid function

"When sleeping women wake, mountains move" - Chinese proverb

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you have not yet joined our community, be sure to grab our hidden Hormone stressors quiz here, and come on board!

 

Dr. Aviva's Resources:

You can explore more of Dr. Aviva's book "The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution" by getting a free chapter of it here.  

And when you buy the book you get two bonuses that she couldn't fit into the book:

1. A free cookbook.

2. A complementary 28-day journal that has a lot of self-care activities and exercises.

To learn more about Dr. Aviva Romm, visit her website here and follow her on social media:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Pinterest

 

Thanks for listening,

Bridgit Danner, Founder of Women's Wellness Collaborative

Top Ten Podcasts of 2016

As the year comes to a close, I want to celebrate ALL the guest experts we had on Women's Wellness Radio this year, and our listening community.  It was a great year of growth, both in knowledge and in community building.

Today I'm sharing the top ten most downloaded episodes, in case you want to catch one or two that you missed.  Here we go:

1. Why Your Probiotic Supplement Isn't Working With Kiran Krishnan

This episode I saved for many months to make it out 100th episode! This interview with Kiran Krishnan, microbiologist and founder of Megaspore Probiotics, is super fascinating. This conversation breaks through confusion about the gut and myths about probiotics.

2. Natural Solutions for Hormonal Problems with Dr. Carrie Jones   

This was a very popular episode right away!  Dr. Carrie has great insights on hormone labs and why our hormones go haywire. She also shares some of her favorite supplements. Don't miss the free handout on the page.

3. The Hormonal Imbalances That Make You Gain Weight With Cammi Balleck  

Well, I didn't know this show was so popular 'til today!  It suggests to me that lots of women in our community are dealing with hormonally-based weight issues, so I'll bring more resources to you on this subject.

4. Seven Keys to Fertility Into Your 40s With Dr. Anna Cabeca       

This was an interesting one for me too!  I am fascinated with the topic of optimizing fertility at an older age, and Dr. Cabeca is both an inspiring and knowledgeable expert in this area.

5.  The Autoimmune Fix With Dr. Tom O'Bryan   

This was less of a surprise.  Dr. Tom O'Bryan is a well-known expert in the field of gluten intolerance and autoimmunity, and many women in our community are dealing with autoimmunity. What wowed me in this interview was what a talented presenter Dr. Tom is.  

6. Easy Essential Oils for Women's Health with Dr. Mariza Snyder   

I had no idea this episode was creeping up the ranks.  It suggests to me that you all are hungry for more practical, simple solutions. Let's do it!

7.  A Holistic Approach To Adrenal Healing With Kelly Graham 

I also did not know this one was faring so well!  But adrenal dys-regulation is so prevalent today, I shouldn't be surprised. What I loved about Kelly's presentation was her insight on how we put ourselves into this box.

8. Nutrition And More For A Healthy Cycle With Caroline Zwickson   

Y'all love to learn about your cycles!  Caroline brings some clear explanation and great tips with this one.

9. Why You Need to Support Your Mitochondria With Susanne Bennett    

We have a tie for #9 with the exact same number of downloads.  Dr. Bennett gives a rarely-heard and much-needed explanation of the importance of our mitochondria.  This one is good for chronic disease and infertility.  

9. Interpreting Your Period Symptoms with Rachel Eyre      

I loved this episode with Rachel Eyre and I'm so glad it made the top ten.  We cover some detailed stuff like uterine positioning and clots in menstrual blood...and vaginal steaming!

10.  A Healthy Dose of Productivity with Laura McClellan  

And I'm so happy this episode squeaked in there, because I'm a big fan of Laura. She is not in the 'health space', but she an incredibly wise teacher on the important subject of getting sh*t done with wearing yourself out.  She has great presence. 

I am filled with gratitude as I write this for our experts and our listeners. Looking back and remembering all these amazing conversations gives me energy for the year to come!

If you are not yet a subscriber, you can subscribe by searching 'womens wellness radio' on most podcast player apps. Here is the iTunes link. Get a new episode very week!

If you want to share a favorite episode, speaker, take-away or memory from the podcast this past year, I'd really love to read it below!

A Holistic Approach To Adrenal Healing With Kelly Graham

Kelly Graham

Our topic this week on the Women's Wellness Radio is adrenal health. Our guest is Kelly Graham, a nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP) who works with patients to bring them back to the basics, that is guiding them on nutrient dense foods and providing good recommendations on supplementation.

Growing up, Kelly's gut health started going down in her late teenage years. She also had amalgam/mercury filings which negatively affected her health. She worked as a chef and on many occasions worked till late which was chaotic to her body! She had excess weight, her lymph glands were frequently swelling, and was constantly feeling tired even after sleeping for almost 12 hours! She was misdiagnosed and told that she had hypothyroidism and possibly Hashimotos while in fact she had adrenal fatigue.

In this episode we talk about:

  1. How one's eating environment when growing up can affect gut health
  2. Adrenal glands - what they are,what they do, how to find them (where they are located)
  3. Adrenal hormones and their functions including cortisol,sex hormones like DHEA, pregnenolone,progesterone, and testosterone
  4. Taking hormones - when there are low levels in the body

Kelly also talks about symptoms to look out for like:

1. Feeling overwhelmed - having a hard time making decisions, constipation, diarrhea, low sex drive, low blood sugar, mental fog
2. Increased cravings for some foods e.g sugary and salty foods
3. Difficulty getting started in the morning
4. Sleeping for many hours but still feel exhausted

Listen to this podcast to get some tips on recovering from adrenal deficiency like the importance of quality sleep, good dieting, body shaming and so much more.

For more resources on adrenal health and adrenal fatigue from Kelly Graham, you can find her on:

Twitter
Facebook Page
Facebook Group
Website

Thanks for listening.

Bridgit Danner, Founder of Women's Wellness Collaborative.

To get a new interview delivered to your phone weekly, subscribe to our podcast atiTunes or through most podcast players.

If you have not yet joined our community, be sure to grab our hidden Hormone stressors quiz here, and come on board!