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All posts by Karyn Haley

Ep 28: Must Have SCD Kitchen Gadgets You Can’t Live Without

Starting the Specific Carbohydrate Diet is one of the hardest things a mom with Crohn’s or colitis can do. The diet is so different from anything you’ve tried before and the kitchen can quickly become the place you spend all of your time.

In my almost 13 years on this diet, I’ve definitely taken great pleasure in hacking all the cooking and baking parts of the diet to make your kitchen life easier and more fun! Finding kitchen gadgets that simplify your SCD life is right up there with my favorite things to do (I’m SCD nerdy like that ; )

I can’t wait to share my latest SCD finds with you. Whether you’re an SCD beginner, SCD intermediate, or SCD pro, you are going to love these kitchen gadget finds that make your SCD life 10 times easier.  

We’re talking about:

  • Your best weapon kitchen gadget antidote for the hangries when you’re just getting started on the SCD
  • The most important SCD legal food you’ll want to make in your Instant Pot
  • Why almond flour never tasted so good with this kitchen gadget

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be running out to the store (or at least hoping on your computer) to buy these must have SCD lifesaving kitchen gadgets.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [02:24] Why you don’t need every SCD kitchen gadget the moment you start
  • [05:00] The gadgets you do need to get started on SCD when you are a beginner (plus a bonus splurge that will make your SCD life even better)
  • [09:41] The kitchen gadget antidote for the SCD hangries when you’re in the early stages of eating the SCD
  • [13:15] The beginning SCD stages splurge and health saver you’re going to want to get
  • [16:10] My top 3 SCD kitchen gadgets that are the perfect fit when you are in the intermediate stages of SCD
  • [21:01] The most important SCD food you’ll want to make in your instant pot
  • [23:15] When you become and SCD pro, there’s still these kitchen gadgets that can open your SCD world up to a whole new level
  • [27:50] The must have kitchen gadget that makes your SCD on-the-go life easy as pie (grain free pie of course ; )
  • [29:45] Almond flour never tasted so sweet (and this gadget is the reason)
  • [34:05] A free resource checklist to get all your SCD kitchen gadgets is yours at karynhaley.com/gadgets
  • [35:22] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Get your FREE SCD/GAPS Kitchen Gadget Checklist

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

The Cheeky Podcast Episode 22: Juicing vs Smoothies

The Cheeky Podcast Episode 20: Q and A IBD Giveaway Part II with SCD vs GAPS

How to Make Nut Milk at Home Video

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:50] Hey dear one, hope I am finding you feeling happy today. I hope I can bring a smile to your face when I tell you that today, I’m feeling gratitude for you and for your lovely messages in support of the show that you keep sending my way. I’m so glad this podcast is bringing you some hope and inspiration. Thank you for listening and telling your fellow IBD mamas about the show. Let’s keep spreading hope to all the moms with IBD. There’s a lot of us in the world and we are stronger when we unite.

We’ve got a special SCD show coming your way today. You know the Specific Carbohydrate Diet is right up there with my favorite topics in the world to discuss, so let just dive in. Today, I’m going to make your existing experience on this diet or your move to starting the diet ten times easier.  The SCD is hard enough. Let’s not make it harder when we don’t have the right kitchen tools to help get us started and stay committed as we go.

THE SCD IS HARD, LET’S NOT MAKE IT HARDER THAN IT HAS TO BE

So here’s the thing about the SCD. Even though there’s lots of people who will tell you need these 20 kitchen tools right away if your on SCD, the truth is some of them you need now, and some can wait a little while. That’s why I’ve designed this episode into three sections: must have beginner SCD kitchen gadgets (these are the ones you’ll definitely want before you get started), must have intermediate SCD kitchen gadgets (these are the ones you’ll need probably in a couple months’ time if all goes well), and must have advanced SCD kitchen gadgets you can wait for until well down the road when you are smooth sailing in SCD land.

I hope this list and breaking it up by where you’re at in SCD will give you less stress when you get started, save you from spending all your money at one time, and help you know what’s really important to purchase to make SCD work best for you.

One last note I want to mention. Every kitchen gadget on this list is also interchangeable with the GAPS diet. These kitchen tools are must have’s for either diet. And both of these diets have their strengths and both can be equally amazing when it comes to healing your Crohn’s or colitis.

We wont’ be delving into the in’s and out’s of what these diets entail on this episode so if you’re new to the world of SCD and GAPS and you’re wondering how they might be able to help you, you definitely want to check out episode 20 of The Cheeky Podcast. I’ll link to it in the show notes. It will give you everything you need to know when it comes to deciding which diet is best for you.

So, you know where to go to get more information on what the diets entail, how they can help your IBD, and where to find help on which one is best for you. And you’re set with the fact that although I’ll be mostly mentioned SCD in this episode, all of these gadgets work for GAPS too.

Fantastic, OK let’s dive in.

[05:00] So, you’re toying with the idea of getting started on the SCD diet or you know it’s imminent, you are starting ASAP. What do you need right away to get yourself started with less stress and more confidence?

YOUR SCD KITCHEN GADGETS MUST HAVE’S RIGHT FROM THE BEGINNING

Three Things.

There’s three kitchen gadgets that will make your early SCD life 10 times easier and then there’s one bonus splurge gadget to purchase if you can swing it.

OK #1, the number one kitchen gadget you’ve got to have when you’re just starting out the SCD is a yogurt maker. The crux of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, that crucial component that helps you balance your gut flora—the bacteria in your gut. Now listen, we can get into a huge debate about whether you should start with the yogurt right away, wait until some intestinal healing has taken place and whether you start with dairy or non-dairy yogurt. But unless you are going to skip the yogurt piece all together, you will need a yogurt maker and pretty quickly.

Over the course of my close to 13 years on the SCD, yogurt makers have come and gone, but right now, there’s no better yogurt maker than the Louvele. This is a great machine, dedicated to making SCD/GAPS yogurt. Go to their website, I’ll link to it in the show notes. Check out their yogurt making tutorials and buy the yogurt maker on their site. You won’t be sorry you did. And by the way, the Louvele yogurt maker makes dairy and non-dairy yogurt. Both have the probiotic properties you need to heal your IBD.

Moving on to your #2 must have kitchen gadget when you’re an SCD beginner. It’s large, glass mason jars. These are the best place to store your chicken stock, your premade snack foods, even leftovers can be stored in glass mason jars. These jars and seriously the best for broth. When I make my homemade stock, I always know to get out three large mason jars. That’s what it takes to store my stock. Then, I place these in the frig to use throughout the week. Easy to store, easy to find when I’m ready for some gut healing broth.

YOUR ANTIDOTE FOR THE EARLY SCD HANGRIES

[09:41] In the beginning days of SCD, when you are hangry and going through carbohydrate withdrawal (yes, it’s a real thing), having snacks at the ready is a must. I love using mason jars for pureed carrots and other veggies, or apple and pear sauce. If you have a few of the smaller, medium sized mason jars, they are perfect for this, but if not, the larger ones will do as well. 

I remember my client Olivia telling me she was really struggling in the middle of the second week of the SCD. She was beyond the intro diet and moving into well-cooked fruits and veggies and Olivia was hangry all the time. In her pre-SCD days, she was a self-described carb-a-holic. Pasta, white bread, rice, mashed potatoes… those were all her meals of choice.  When Olivia started SCD, she essentially went cold turkey off these foods. That’s bound to create some carbohydrate withdrawal symptoms where you just feel hungry and jittery all the time. The antidote to the hangries is having food on hand at all times.

And as I told Olivia, you never want to have to hunt and peck for food. The temptation to stray becomes just too great. There’s just something about having snacks right in the frig, where you don’t even have to open the container to know what’s in it. Keeping your early days of SCD snacking food in clear glass containers is genius. It worked for me when I was going through it, it worked for Olivia when she was going through it, and it will work for you.

Glass mason jars, a beginner SCD must have.

AVOIDING SCD CROSS CONTAMINATION CAN BE THE KEY TO IBD REMISSION

OK, let’s finish up our SCD beginner must have kitchen gadgets list with kitchen gadget #3: your own dedicated kitchen pieces. The cutting board, pots, pans, utensils… all the places where cross contamination can occur. While it may not be practical to get all your own individual kitchen gadgets, I highly recommend you focus on the ones you can get. And that starts with the cutting board, where small particles of food can get stuck and negatively impact your health. Those little crumbs might seem like a small thing, but to a new SCDer, they can have huge negative results.

I remember when I started out on the SCD I didn’t have my own pots and pans. I quickly learned that I was so sensitive to the leftover remnants of food (even those you can’t see) on the pan and ended up buying a couple pieces dedicated just to me. It was the difference between feeling almost well and getting all the way to IBD remission.

The other place to watch for cross contamination when it comes to the SCD, by the way, is the nut butter jar (peanut butter, cashew butter, almond butter) and also the regular butter. These are places that often get contaminated with bread because the knife goes in the jar, onto the bread, and back into the jar again. Same with butter, whether its in a tube or a stick of butter. Do yourself a favor and buy your own. And if your kids are anything like mine, label whatever is yours so little hands don’t end up taking your SCD goodies.

THE SCD SPLURGE YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS

Just one last thing before we move on from must have kitchen gadgets for beginners. There’s one last item that I consider a splurge, but still a very worthwhile purchase in the beginning stages of SCD. And that’s a high-quality juicer. Juicing can be hugely beneficial and healing for your digestive system, especially in the beginning stages when you really need to get your vitamins and minerals into the body to help lower your inflammation and boost your immune. But at this time, it’s also likely you can’t tolerate many of these nutrient dense foods in their natural whole state.

Juicing gives you the opportunity to put vegetables and fruits in a state you can easily digest and absorb. Those two words, digest and absorb, are music to your inflamed intestinal system. Listen, there’s so much I could tell you about juicing, it’s a big topic. But the good news is that we already tackled everything you need to know about juicing in episode 22: Juicing vs Smoothies: What’s Better for Gut Healing? Go check that out. It will give you everything you need to know about juicing as well as give you some options if you are ready to purchase a juicer to help you with your beginner SCD and healing needs.

A FREE RESOURCE TO MAKE YOUR SCD LIFE EASIER AND CONVENIENT

Ok, 3 must have kitchen gadgets to begin SCD with a bonus thrown in so you have everything you need for early days on the diet. These kitchen supplies are most of what you need when you’re just getting started, but there are most definitely a few more items you’ll want to consider to make your SCD life quick and convenient. For all of those items, you’ll want to download My Best and Most Comprehensive Kitchen Equipment List for the SCD & GAPS Diets. It’s the most extensive list I’ve ever created for everything you need, no matter what stage you’re in. It’s for every stage of SCD in and it’s yours absolutely free when you click the link in the show notes or go to karynhaley.com/gadgets to grab your copy of this very valuable checklist.

ALREADY PAST THE SCD INTRO STAGES? CHECK OUT THESE MUST HAVE INTERMEDIATE STAGES MUST HAVE’S

[16:10] Ok, we covered some must have’s that you need to get started on SCD. Now, let’s move on to the intermediate phase, when you’re adding in more food like additional fruits and vegetables and nut milks.  These are the top three must have gadgets to get you through this period on your healing journey.

What’s #1 on your list? It’s a nut milk bag. Literally a bag that helps you make your own nut milk. Almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk… all of these milks are welcome on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Just not in the manner that you typically buy non-dairy milk at the grocery store. These seemingly “healthy” nut milks are full of additives, preservatives, and gut disruptors that will hinder your healing progress. Plus, and most importantly, making your own nut milk is so freakin’ simple you won’t believe it and it’s totally fun, especially for your kiddos. It’s like milking your own herd of nuts to get delicious tasting, gut healing milk.

You’re going to love it when you’re ready for this stage of the SCD because it opens your food world up to a larger playing field and it helps you enjoy more variety in what you put in your body. The nut milk bag is your gateway to get there.

Nut milk bags are available all over the internet. There’s a link to my favorite one in your SCD/GAPS kitchen equipment checklist so when you grab it I the show notes, check out the one I recommend.

If you’re thinking about trying nut milk for yourself, I’ll also link to my oldie but goodie instructional nut milk video in the show notes. I promise I’ll put a podcast together all about the latest in nut milk in the near future, but for now, there’s that good (but dated) video to get you started in the show notes.

Let’s move on to talk about your SCD kitchen gadget must have #2 in the intermediate stage and it’s a crockpot or an instant pot. When it comes to the crockpot or an instant pot, I’ve got 2 words for you—game changer. Both free up so much of your time spent in the kitchen. It’s truly a game changer.

Crockpots are fantastic. I’ve had mine for years. They slow cook soups, stews, your chicken stock that you’re eating or drinking a ton of on the diet at this point and they take the flavor factor of everything you make up a notch because they let everything marinate and simmer for hours. The beauty of the crockpot is that you can put all the food in in the morning and it’s ready for you by dinnertime. No extra work or labor intensive meal. Just done.

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU’LL WANT TO MAKE IN YOUR INSTANT POT

Now, in recent years, the instant pot has exploded all over the world. It’s just like a crockpot in it’s ability to create super rich, flavorful food that you don’t have to be chained to the kitchen to make. But the instant pot adds an additional benefit. Your food is cooked in an instant—well almost. I’ve made a complete, delicious meals for my family, SCD legal of course, in 30 minutes flat. Garlic Chicken, turkey tacos, lemon dill salmon, sweet and spicy chicken stew, pot roast… all in 30 minutes. It’s truly a wonder. But the most important thing I make in my instant pot is my chicken stock. It’s rich and full of gut healing gelatin and collagen without having to spend hours cooking it.  

You’re spending so much time in the kitchen making your own food on the SCD. I don’t know about you, but I’d buy any kitchen gadget that saved me time. The crockpot and the instant pot do just that. Do yourself a favor, SCD or not, and get one of these must have kitchen favorites.

And by the way, instant pots aren’t just for dinner. Many of my clients make their homemade fermented yogurt in the instant pot and swear by it. Just a thought.

OK, there’s one last must have kitchen gadget I want to share with you for when you’re in the intermediate stages of the SCD. Kitchen gadget #3 is a high-speed blender. Oh the power of a high speed blender. Soups, smoothies, sauces, salad dressings, nut butter, nut milk… I think I use my blender at least once a day, and that’s not counting the times my kids use it either. We are definitely a high-speed blending family.

I have a link to my favorite high-speed blender in your SCD/GAPS Kitchen Equipment Check List, but just know that it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune to buy a high quality high-speed blender. There are several available on the market today. I also talk about my favorite blender brands in episode 22, the one where I compare juicing and smoothies so if you’re in the market to upgrade your old-fashioned blender, check it out. Either way, I’ll get you steered in the right direction.

ARE YOU AN SCD PRO? CONSIDER THESE KITCHEN GADGETS TO TAKE YOUR COOKING AND BAKING LIFE TO A WHOLE NEW LEVEL

Well, we’ve made it to our last category of must have SCD kitchen gadgets. These are the gadgets you’ll need when you get to more advanced stages on your gut healing journey. Isn’t it cool that you don’t need all of these gadgets at once? You can buy them a little at a time, when you’re ready for them.

[21:01] Now gadget #1 isn’t technically a gadget, it’s more of an accompaniment to your kitchen supplies. But it’s a must have for SCDer’s once you’ve started to incorporated nut flours into your diet. And nut flours are a beautiful thing. We always celebrate this moment when a client is able to tolerate nut flours.

Gadget #1 (not really a gadget technically) is baking cups. You know those paper cups you use when making muffins or cupcakes. Yep, baking cups. I know it’s a small purchase, but trust me, baking cups are vital. In your life prior to SCD, you probably were used to breaking out the baking spray (like Pam) and adding your baking batters directly to the muffin pan. This is just not going to work when it comes to nut flours. First of all, they’ll stick and you’ll be lucky to get any of your baked good out of the pan. And secondly, Pam type sprays are not allowed on the SCD due to their gut disrupting ingredient like soy lecithin and dimethyl silicone. Do yourself a favor and stock up on baking cups when you’re ready for nut flours. And, actually, they’re more versatile than you think. I’ve used them for egg-straordinary breakfasts and meatball creations for dinner. Baking cups are a must have addition to your SCD kitchen gadget supplies.

THE MUST HAVE SCD GADGET TO KEEP EVERYTHING FROM STICKING TO THE PAN

Along the same lines as baking cups, when it comes to SCD baking, you’ll want to purchase for advanced SCD mode is kitchen gadget #2- a silpat mat or parchment paper. Just like muffins will stick to your cupcake pan, everything else you bake with nut flour will too. Cookies, pizza, bread, biscuits… you get the picture… all of these delicious foodie items will stick to your sheet pan, pizza stone, loaf pan, or 9 X 13 pan. You’ll need some sort of nonstick surface and toxic baking spray isn’t the answer.

A silpat mat is a more permanent and environmentally friendly option. You can reuse this kitchen gadget over and over. Parchment paper on the other hand is also non-stick, but it will need to be recycled after using. In my kitchen, I use both. When I’m using a sheet pan, the silpat mat is the perfect choice. For breads I make in a loaf pan, the parchment paper does the trick every time.

THE MUST HAVE KITCHEN GADGET THAT MAKE YOUR SCD ON-THE-GO LIFE HAPPEN

[27:50] Alright, let’s talk about one last advanced stage must have SCD kitchen gadget. Gadget #3 in the advanced category is something called a hot logic mini. Words can’t describe just how much I love and appreciate this invention. It’s another SCD game changer.

By the time you’ve moved into advanced SCD stages, you’re gaining more confidence in your eating away from home. You’re taking your food on the go and this is where the hot logic mini comes into play. This must have kitchen gadget is a portable food carrier and heater for all your SCD on-the-go food. Before Covid, I used my hot logic mini practically every day. It allowed me to take my food wherever I went. It kept it cold and fresh, and then at lunchtime I could heat it up as long as I had access to an outlet.

I’d also take it on every road trip we took as a family.  I’d plug it in to our car’s outlet and my food would keep warm and be ready for me wherever and whenever I was ready. Think of it like a small portable crockpot on the warm setting. It keeps your food warm for as long as you need it to, but never burns it because it’s at a warmer setting, never high heat. I haven’t used my hot logic mini in ages because I’ve been so close to home during the pandemic. I can’t wait until I get to use it again. We are getting there. I feel it! The hot logic mini. It’s like having your own portable oven with you everywhere you go. Fantastic for SCDer’s.

ALMOND FLOUR NEVER TASTED SO SWEET (AND THIS GADGET IS THE REASON)

I’ve got to leave you with one more bonus kitchen gadget. Not a necessity, but a splurge that will make your nut flour eating SCD life that much sweeter. And that last bonus item is a toaster oven. If there’s one thing I know about almond and coconut flour goodies, it’s that they always taste better when their warm.

The toaster oven allows you to warm everything directly from the freezer without heating up an entire oven. My family has gotten so into the toaster oven (for everything) that I don’t think we ever use the microwave anymore. And to that, I say good riddance to that kitchen gadget happily.

THE RECAP

[30:54] So there you have it, my complete list, every must have SCD kitchen gadget you’ve got to have to make sure you have the best and easiest SCD journey possible. Let’s recap that list one more time.

In the category of SCD beginner must have kitchen gadgets we’ve got:

  • A yogurt maker (will need that very soon)
  • Large glass mason jars (great for chicken stock and all your snacky goodies)
  • Your own kitchen pieces (cutting board, possibly pots, pans, cooking utensils…)
  • Bonus: a juicer (no better way to make sure you digest and absorb your nutrients)

In the category of SCD intermediate must have kitchen gadgets, we’ve got:

  • The nut milk bag (don’t want to be buying grocery store nut milk)
  • The crockpot or instant pot (perfect for making your cooking life easier)
  • A high-speed blender (for soups, sauces, and everything in between)

In the category of SCD advanced must have kitchen gadgets, we’ve got:

  • Baking cups (for non-stick nut flour goodness)
  • A silpat mat or parchment paper (both if you bake a variety of things)
  • The hot logic mini (game changer for SCD on the go)
  • Bonus: a toaster oven (because it’s makes nut flour taste delish)

ARE YOU READY TO START OR ACCELERATE YOUR SCD JOURNEY?

I know you can do it. Don’t be deterred. The SCD is possible and having some extra help from some SCD lovin’ kitchen gadgets is the key.  

Remember there’s nothing I like talking about more than the Specific Carbohydrate Diet so hit me up with your Q’s about kitchen gadgets or other SCD topics anytime. That’s what I’m here for.

Don’t forget to grab your copy of My Best and Most Comprehensive Kitchen Equipment Check List for the SCD & GAPS Diets. It’s got all of the kitchen gadgets I mentioned today, plus tons more to make your SCD or GAPS life as easy a pie (grain free pie that is). Just head to the show notes and click the link to download the checklist or head over to karynhaley.com/gadgets. Either way, I’ve got you covered.

Until the next episode, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Chat soon!

Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

[35:22] One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This podcast, video, and blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 27: Behind-the-Scenes of My 5-Step IBD Healing Morning Start

Last week, after finishing my IBD healing morning start for the umpteenth time, I had a realization of just how powerful these 5 gut healing steps have been in my life.

And once that hit me, the power of setting yourself up for the day (mind, body, and soul), I realized I had to share my powerful morning start with you.

I hope this behind-the-scenes look at what I do to engage IBD healing and keep it going all day long sparks an “a-ha” or a “hmm…” moment for you to create your own IBD healing rituals, no matter what time of day you do them.

We’re talking about:

  • How to make sure your IBD healing morning start that stays with you all day long
  • The #1 mindfulness app made with IBDer’s in mind
  • Why “the year of ME” is the most selfless thing you can do for your whole family

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be ready to put your very own IBD healing morning start into practice in the way that best fits your symptoms and your lifestyle.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [08:52] The reason why a far infrared heat lamp is a must for your IBD healing morning start
  • [10:30] The digestive benefits of herbal tea for your gut health
  • [12:23] The perfect Mother’s Day gift you have to ask for
  • [16:51] The free mindfulness app you have to get to help your Crohn’s or colitis
  • [22:44] What I put in my morning pages and what you might want to write about too
  • [26:50] The free and fabulous YouTube yoga sesh for beginners that you’re going to love
  • [28:40] The way we fit our IBD healing into our family life too
  • [31:10] The recipe for the morning detox drink that’s the perfect finish for your IBD healing morning start
  • [38:18] How to bring your morning start into the rest of your day so you feel the best you can all day long
  • [41:40] What putting YOU first can do for healing your IBD
  • [43:20] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Get your FREE Morning Detox Recipes

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Far Infrared Mineral Heat Lamp

Breville Automatic Tea Maker

Insight Timer App

The Effect of Breathing, Movement, and Meditation on Psychological and Physical Symptoms and Inflammatory Biomarkers in Inflammatory Bowel Disease: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:50] Hello dear one and welcome to the podcast. How’s your day going? I want to take just a moment to send out some healing energy your way, especially if you’re struggling today. I feel you mama. I’ve had those lots of those days myself. I have to say though, for me, today is going pretty well, considering a lot of chaos that’s out of my control going on around me and I know that’s because I started my day in the best possible way for my IBD. I started today with my 5 step IBD Healing Morning Start. I’ve been starting my day this way for a while now, not really absorbing just how important it was for my health, and one day last week it hit me just how crucial my morning start was and when I realized that, I knew I had to share it with you. If the behind-the-scenes of how I start my day with my IBD in mind can help you move the needle in a positive direction, even just a little, I knew I had to share.

So today, like I said, I’m sharing the behind-the-scenes of what my typical morning looks like, my 5 step IBD Healing Morning Process, but I have to start by saying that sharing my 5 steps is not about you copying the way I do it. It’s about sparking a-ha’s and hmm’s for you so that you can create your own IBD healing rituals.

And my rituals take place first thing in the morning. I’m at a place in my mom life where that works best for me. My youngest is 10 and I’ve got two late in teenage years adults still living at home who love to stay up past midnight every night. My nighttime of putting the kids to bed early and enjoying some quiet time with myself or my hubby are definitely a thing of the past. These days, if I want quiet ME time, it’s got to be when the kids are still asleep in the morning.

When you’re listening to my 5 Step IBD Healing Morning Start, instead of thinking “I can’t” or tuning it out because this time of day doesn’t work for you, I challenge you instead to think about, where could I fit that in for me?

WHERE CAN I PRIORITIZE ME TO HELP MY IBD?

If you have nappers, could you commit to this during naptime, or maybe schedule it with your partner when you’re both at home with the kids? If you’re kiddos are older than nap age, but still go to bed relatively early, could you squeeze it in after their bedtime? And if you have kids my age, trust me, they are fine on their own for a bit. I promise, they won’t burn down the house—most likely. And if you’re like lots of mamas and you feel like your whole day is a zoo and 1 hour all 5 steps takes isn’t possible—what about some 20 minute chunks of time where you break up the 5 steps?

Bottom line, let my behind-the-scenes be the catalyst for you to create your own IBD healing rituals that you can do daily. And if you can’t do all 5, which 1 or 2 can you do?

THIS ISN’T AN ALL OR NONE APPROACH, IT’S ABOUT FIGURING OUT WHAT WORKS FOR YOU.

You do you mama! But I’m not buying, I don’t have any time. Like a wise professor told me once when I told her I don’t have time… she said we all have time and we make the choice what we do with it. Right now, healing your IBD needs to be right up there with your top priorities like keeping your kids alive. If you stick with this, it’s not your forever, it’s your now. And when you feel better, you’ll pour all that love back into time with the ones you love.

You deserve this time mama. You deserve health mama.  Make this your priority and you will reap the rewards with IBD health.

And at the end, we’ll recap the steps and I’ll show you how to make each of these steps your own when you Do it Like a Mom.

[06:10] It’s time to dive into my 5-step morning start. For this part, I’m going to give it to your straight. How the 5 steps work for me. And at the end, we’ll recap the steps and I’ll show you how to make each of these steps your own when you Do it Like a Mom.

STEP #1: WAKE UP EARLY AND GET SET UP FOR AN IBD HEALING MORNING

This is the most important step even though there’s not much in terms of helping your IBD because if you wake up late and get a late start, whatever time late means for you—for some mamas 5:30am is a late start, for others 9am is. So, whatever early is for you, try for that if you’re planning on doing all 5 steps IBD Healing Morning Start. The whole healing journey takes about 1 hour. To make sure I get up on time, I try (notice the word try there cause I’m far from perfect) to get a good night’s sleep. For me, that’s 8-9 hours. Ever since I was diagnosed with Crohn’s, (and that was over 30 years ago) I’ve noticed that I need more sleep than some people. I just know that my body needs it. My hubby seems to thrive on 6 hours. Everyone is different.

So, once I walk up early, I immediately turn on my far infrared lamp.  What’s a far infrared lamp and how does it help IBD? That’s a whole other conversation and one we had back in the last episode of The Cheeky Podcast. Episode #26: Far Infrared Light Therapy: A Hidden Gem for IBD. If you didn’t listen to that episode yet, it’s OK, you can go back and take a listen after this one. I go into everything you need to know about infrared light therapy and how it can help if you have Crohn’s or colitis.

In the meantime, just know that for IBDer’s, far infrared light therapy in the cliff notes version (if cliff notes are still a thing) is all about detoxifying your body, decreasing inflammation, increasing your immune function, and balancing your gut flora. Really important stuff for us IBD moms.

So, I turn on my far infrared heat lamp first thing because it takes 10-15 minutes to heat up so I want to get it started right away. And if I’m being complete in my behind the scenes take, next up is a quick trip to the bathroom for a #1. Normally, I wouldn’t classify that to just anyone, but in IBD land, the difference between #1 and #2 land is a big deal. We’re always keeping track aren’t we?

[10:15] I grab a cup of herbal tea that’s already brewed, waiting for me, from a little nook in by bedroom. Weird that I brew tea in my bedroom, I know. Well, it’s the perfect place that’s close by to pick up my tea before heading back into bed. Tea is a huge part of my healing regime. Herbal tea boasts gut healing benefits ranging from decreasing inflammation, to helping with bloating, gas, nausea, aiding in digestion, energy, immune function, depending on the type of herbal tea, it can provide us with antioxidants and nutrients like vitamin C and iron… and so many more crazy cool benefits. And my herbal tea is waiting for me to wake up because in my bedroom is one of my absolute favorite things in the whole world. An automatic, programable tea brewer.

Trust me, I know it’s the absolute definition of a true want and not a necessity, and I thank my lucky stars every time I sip tea made from it. One of the only perks of having IBD (and we deserve some perks with all we go through) is truly appreciating everything we put in our body that supports health and healing. Most people mindlessly eat without thinking about what it’s doing to their body. We, on the other hand eat and drink with intention because we know just how powerful it can be on our healing journey.

And getting that tea brewer, if I’m being really honest with you, had a lot to do with feeling jealous of coffee drinkers who could set their coffee maker at night and have perfectly brewed hot coffee waiting for them in them in the morning. So, I searched far and wide, for years really, for a tea maker that did the same thing. Finally, last year I found it. An automatic, ready for you in the morning, tea brewer by Breville and I asked my family to get it for me for Mother’s Day. Next to my Vitamix, my fantastic high-speed blender that I’ve had for 10 years, it’s probably my most favorite small kitchen appliance. I’ll link to my tea brewer in the show notes in case you’re a tea fanatic like me and want to indulge in this fancy newfangled contraption. Mother’s Day is coming up again you know.

So, I quickly grab my cup of herbal tea and settle back in bed where my infrared red heat lamp is heating up and sip my tea while I read the morning news on my phone. Gasp, phone by my bed? Yep, guilty. Well, actually, I don’t feel so guilty. Right now, I’m kind of feeling unapologetic about my phone being next to me while I sleep. Maybe I’ll feel differently a month from now, but today I like it there. It’s on do not disturb all night, I turn the wi-fi off at night so I’m not using it, but I like my morning news emails when I wake up. Katie Couric and The Skimm. Two quick email recaps of the what’s going on in the news with a little light and fluffy thrown in. Perfect to get my morning news fix.

Now, I have to give you a word of caution here, and this is definitely from personal experience. Try your hardest not to get sucked into your other emails. That’s a rabbit hole that will suck you in and never let you out. It’s into the news update emails and right back out again for me. Just some friendly advice from an ex-email addict. News fix done and my infrared heat lamp is ready to go. So how it always takes me exactly the right amount of time to finish with the news for my news fix lamp to be ready for me.

IT’S TIME FOR STEP #2 AND STEP #3

[15:06] Great, now it’s time for Step #2, where the real IBD healing power begins—mind, body, and soul. Step 2 begins with the infrared heat lamp that’s now all warm and ready for some gut love. I focus the heat lamp 12 inches above my belly, make sure the timer is set for thirty minutes. With step 2 happening in the background, I can quickly move on the step #3.  And step #3 begins with either Option A: My Long Visualization Plan, or Option B: My Short Visualization Plan.

Neither plan is better than the other, they’re just slightly different, depending on my mood and what I want to accomplish with my IBD healing start that day. Both plans do involve some sort of visualization. If this word is new to you, you can think of it like a meditation, but this meditation is specifically designed for moms with IBD who want all the gut healing benefits meditation can bring without the fear or annoyance some moms get from the complete stillness of meditation. I see it like this: meditation is about quieting the mind. Visualization is about focusing your mind on healing.

In option A: my long visualization, I spend about 20-25 minutes in a guided visualization through a free app called Insight Timer. Have you ever used this app? It’s truly incredible- just in the sheer volume of visualization/meditation options available. There’s visualizations based on time from 5 min to 60 minutes and longer. There’s visualizations based on the benefit you are looking for like pain management, healing, relaxation, anxiety, sleep and motherhood. There’s filters by type of practice like guided imagery, mindfulness, or grounding.

There’s even a parent section you can use with your kids. Visualizations for relaxation and sleep, all packaged in a perfect kid sized box. My 10-year-old loves Insight Timer!

I’m not even scratching the surface here of all that Insight Timer offers. And did I mention it’s free? You just have to check it out. I’ll leave the link to Insight Timer in the show notes.

For my option A long form visualization, I pick a 20-25 minute session from my book marked visualization list based on my gut healing needs of the day. There’s several Insight Timer contributors to Insight Timer you might want to check out are Sarah Blondin and Davidji, but my favorites are the gut directed contributors like Michelle White and Ruthie Hanan. Ruthie even has visualization sessions specific for all of us with Crohn’s and colitis. How cool is that?

This 20-25 minutes of focused energy on the health of my gut, my entire body, and my mind are more powerful than anything else I do for my gut health through the day. These moments set me up with the right mindset to move through my day with confidence and clarity. Visualizations like the ones in Insight Timer have lots of relaxing breathing built in. And studies show this specific type of meditation has great benefit for IBD sufferers. One study I’ll link to in the show notes showed outcomes of those with IBD who had a mindfulness practice had lower CRP or C-reactive protein and lower calprotectin levels—both measures of inflammation and active disease in those with Crohn’s and colitis.

Super powerful stuff.

TIME FOR THE KEGELS!!!

With my infrared lamp still gently warming and soothing my abdomen, and my visualization complete, I spend my last 5-10 minutes with a round of kegel exercises—we can’t neglect our kegel muscles mama! It might just come back to haunt us in our old age. I remember my mom needing surgery on her pelvic floor later in life after, well let’s just say things were hanging out where they shouldn’t be, and since I know this can genetic, I’m not taking any chances. The more babies you have vaginally, the more you need those kegels my friend.

Kegel exercises complete, it’s time for a prayer of hope for my family, my loved ones, our Gut Love Community moms, our world and for all I want to conquer for that day. Your prayer or offering to the world can take whatever form prayer takes for you.

And that’s option A: the long visualization plan.

SOMETIMES OPTION B IS JUST AS GOOD AS OPTION A

On an option B day, my short visualization plan, it starts very similar to option A, but I choose a much shorter visualization on Insight Timer—5-10 minutes. I follow that with 20 minutes of my morning pages. This is a free form of journaling that just helps me feel centered, grounded, ready to give my all to the day ahead.

Have you ever tried journaling before? People either love it or hate it. Before I started this practice I used to think I would hate it. But now that I’ve made it a priority, I really have taken to my morning pages. Morning pages, for me, might be a brain dump of whatever is in my head that morning, it might be a brainstorm of ideas for the podcast, it might be a rant about one of my teenagers… right now, it’s been about my mom who passed away a couple months ago. I’m writing down lots of stories about her life. Stories I want to remember from her final days, stories I want the kids to know about her after I’m long gone. It’s been really cathartic.

I like to journal in the morning, but I find that lots of my clients like to do this at night. They might have trouble sleeping and free flow journaling helps them get everything out, and literally then set aside their worries for the night so they can sleep. You pick the way that works for you. Try it, even if you go into it like me thinking you’re going to hate it. I bet you’ll like it more that you think.

Option B ends just like option A with some kegels and a prayer of hope.

Mind, body, spirit energized and ready to start the day.  Almost.

With the relaxing, introspective part of my day behind me and my morning herbal tea drank, it’s time to get the energy and juices flowing.

[24:24] STEP #4: 15 MINUTES OF MOVEMENT

What type of movement speaks to you? Is it CrossFit and kettlebells, jazzercise, or is it yoga, Pilates, or walking in nature? Whatever type of movement calls to you, do it, especially while you’re in IBD healing mode. And while you’re healing and not feeling well, it might be just going outside and breathing the fresh air. I have a client who does this. Right now for her, movement is just getting outside and getting sunshine on her face. Thankfully she lives in the part of the country where it’s sunny most of the year and walking in the sun, feeling it on her face, is reenergizing and it sets her up for a positive day. I have another client who’s a weightlifter and if she doesn’t get her reps in in the morning, she just doesn’t feel ready to start the day.

When it comes to IBD we’re all different. Find the movement routine that works for you.

For me, right now, my movement routine is a combination of yoga and light aerobics with weights. Several months ago it was Pilates. It’s also been barre class, before that just getting outside and walking my dog. Some days I don’t want to do it at all, but 6 days a week I commit. Even when I don’t want to because I know in the end, I’ll be happy that I did. And more importantly, I’ll have a better IBD day when I get my bodily energy flowing.

COMMIT TO 15 MINUTES EVERY DAY

Some days I even have more time and I’ll get in a longer workout, but I always commit to a minimum of 15 minutes.

And let me also give you a couple recommendations when it comes to movement. #1- when it comes to yoga at home, there’s no better yoga instructor than Leslie Fightmaster. Her free YouTube videos are stellar and for every level of yogi. I am not skilled at yogi by any means and I love her 30 day beginners yoga sessions. She’s got 2 complete 30-day programs for beginners that take you from never doing yoga to feeling like you could hold your own in an in person class. Sadly, Leslie recently passed away. I’ve been told that her family plans to keep her yoga videos up on YouTube so please check her out. She’s awesome!

SHOUT OUT TO MY FAVORITE FITNESS APP

Also, I want to give a shout out to my fitness app called Workout for Women. Best $9.99 I spend every month. 100’s of workouts to choose from. So many, I’d never complete them all. From catchy workout titles like Lazy Girl, Couch to Fit, Pelvic Rehab, Office Collection, Night Stretch, Ab Shred, Summer Butt, and even F is for Family workouts like HITT with Kids and Fam Jam, this app is well worth the price.

[28:40] Around this time of the morning, my youngest usually wakes up and strolls into my bedroom and I usually can get him to join me for a workout. Remember, we have to figure out how to fit this into our family’s life. We have to prioritize ourself and our health while we are in healing mode and make time for IBD Healing, but we also have to work within the parameters and constraints of our life.

I often got the kids to workout or do meditation with me when they were younger. I opened their world up to meditation and visualization so it would benefit them and so that they would understood when I needed 10 minutes to give that time to my mindful practice. And if you can get them involved too, even better.

Even teatime has rubbed off on my kids. Every Saturday morning, I brew an extra big pot of my bedroom tea and a couple of my kids will wander in an grab a cup. On days like this, I might skip my morning start in favor of a cup of tea and some connection with them. This IBD morning start isn’t about being militant with your time. It’s about setting you up for IBD success in whatever way works best for you. That tea and chatting time with my kids, especially with my usually not so chatty teenagers, it’s precious time and it’s good for my IBD too.

THE LAST STEP, STEP #5

OK, we’re in the how stretch of my IBD morning start. Step #5. The last step. And that step is heading into the kitchen and making my morning detox drink. After all that I’ve done to support my body, getting enough sleep, my far infrared lamp, my morning visualization, morning pages, my kegels, my prayer time, my movement time… it’s time to get my digestive juices flowing and detoxing any toxins that have built up during the night. My detox drink is full of immune boosting, inflammation busting nutrients. And it’s just what my body needs to get ready for breakfast.

My morning detox drink starts with room temp or warm purified water, and adds in gut loving fresh squeezed lemon, apple cider vinegar, turmeric, black pepper, manuka honey, and MCT oil. Now when I was just starting out with this morning detox drink, I didn’t include all of these ingredients. I started out slow with just water and worked my way up adding in one more ingredient at a time. Even water, first thing in the morning, before you eat breakfast, as simple as that sounds, is incredibly helpful for your digestion. If you are able to tolerate water, it’s time to add the fresh squeezed lemon, then the manuka honey, and so on. The last thing to add is the apple cider vinegar. I don’t recommend it to those in an active flare or those with ulcers in their mouth. It’s just too acidic. Add it when you’re ready no rush.

WANT THE FULL RECIPE FOR MY MORNING DETOX DRINK?

If you want the full recipe for my morning detox, you can get it by going to karynhaley.com/detox or by looking for the link in the show notes. I’m happy to share my recipe with you. In fact, there’s a recipe for normal healthy mornings and a different recipe if you’re feeling like a bug is coming on. Both morning detoxes will give your whole body support as you start the day.

So there you have it, 5 steps to build your own IBD gut healing morning start. It can set you up for a day that supports healing, strength, and confidence that you are on the right path.

Let’s quickly recap while I tell you how you can do it like a mom when it comes to these 5 steps. Hopefully, this will give you some last thoughts on how you can adapt any of these techniques to fit your lifestyle and your symptoms.

HOW ARE YOU GOING TO DO THIS LIKE THE BADASS MOM YOU ARE?

[34:28] Step #1- Wake up, turn on my infrared heat lamp, and grab a cup of herbal tea.

Ready to do step 1 like a mom?

  • Go to bed on time so you can wake up early, but be flexible with what your body needs. Occasionally, when I’m really tired or I know my body needs more rest, I only wake up long enough to turn on the heat lamp and dose again with a visualization playing for my unconscious mind while I catch up on more Zzz’s. If this is where you’re at on your healing journey, and we all are sometimes, embrace it. Trust your body. You will still get great benefit from this approach.
  • And if you want your own automatic tea brewer to join you in step #1, Mother’s Day is coming up dear one. See the link in the show notes.

Step #2- Position the heat lamp, relax and let the infrared healing wash over you.

Ready to do step 2 like a mom?

  • Remember that the infrared lamp isn’t a quick fix for your IBD symptoms. It’s not like you’ll do it for 30 days and feel healed. It is however an important add-on to your current healing regime. When you combine the infrared heat lamp or a sauna with everything you’re already doing in terms of your lifestyle, mindfulness practice, food, and supplements/medication… you’ve got a fantastic healing plan in place.
  • Remember morning isn’t the only time of day for the heat lamp. While the kids nap… While you’re on a mom break… Even at night when you go to bed. The heat lamp I’m sharing in the show notes has an automatic shut off so no worries about it staying on too long.

Step #3– Doing some form of visualization, deep breathing, morning pages, kegels, and positive thoughts or prayer

Ready to do step 3 like a mom?

  • Forget what you thought you knew about meditation in stillness, this isn’t that.
  • Remember your journaling, your visualizations, your breathing from earlier that morning, and go back to this feeling anytime your unsteady, stressed, or untethered throughout the day

Step #4- Movement

Ready to do step 4 like a mom?

  • There will be days when every fiber in your being says no, no, no to exercise. This is me on most days. Don’t give in to the no monster. Every time I go into movement and exercise, even when I don’t want to, I always feel grateful and energized when I’m done.
  • Also, it doesn’t matter what you do—from crossfit or couch to fit, be where you’re at mama. Movement is movement.

And lastly step #5- Your morning detox drink

Ready to that like a mom?

  • First, download my morning detox recipes so you know the ingredients. Go to karynhaley.com/detox and get started.
  • After that, just like with movement, be where you’re at. You don’t need to add all ingredients at once. Play around with what works for your body and what doesn’t. Add in healing ingredients that work for you. It’s your detox drink. Make it your own.
  • Even morning water is a great starting place.

PUT YOURSELF FIRST AND COMMIT TO GETTING STARTED

Well, where are you going to start mama? The infrared heat lamp? Are you going to download Insight Timer? What will you do today to set yourself up for IBD healing success?

I understand how difficult it can be to put yourself first when you’re a mom. We never allow ourselves to do that. We’re taught that it’s selfish. We feel guilty when we do it.

As a recovering guilt addict, I gotta call nonsense on that!

Twelve years ago, when I first started to take control and take the reins on my IBD healing journey, I made a conscious choice to put myself first. I declared it the healing year of ME. I really did. Of course, it didn’t mean that I neglected my kids, but I put everyone on notice, I’m going to do what I need to heal so I can be a better mom, wife, friend, daughter, sister, aunt, worker, teacher…

I fully committed to ME.

Commit to yourself now my friend. Find a morning or an afternoon or an evening routine that sets you up for success. 100% swipe my IBD Healing Morning Start and use it to your fullest advantage.

You’ve got this mama. Let me know how it goes for you.

Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

[43:20] One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This podcast, video, and blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 26: Far Infrared Light Therapy: A Hidden Gem for IBD

Far infrared light therapy (FIR) is a hidden gem of a tool that can be used to help alleviate some of your worst IBD challenges.

You definitely won’t hear your doctor prescribing this underutilized treasure to support your health, but the benefits of FIR therapy can be felt in many areas that impact your digestive system including bacterial balance, immune response, inflammation, and detoxification.

This episode explores how anyone with Crohn’s or colitis, with any budget, can experience the benefits of FIR therapy, even in your own home.

We’re talking about:

  • The eight areas of health that FIR therapy can benefit (and the 3 you should focus on the most)
  • Why you should ditch your electric heating pad today (and what to use instead)
  • The difference between infrared vs traditional saunas
  • Why infrared saunas and FIR lights will leave you cool as a cucumber

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be ready go out and confidently buy your first FIR machine to help you detoxify, boost your immune system, decrease your pain and inflammation, and balance your bacterial load—all music to an IBD mama’s ears!

Episode at a Glance:

  • [05:10] Why far infrared light doesn’t make you sweat
  • [07:29] The 8 areas of health that FIR therapy can benefit (and the 3 you’ll want to focus on
  • [10:15] The biggest toxin upset for all of us with Crohn’s and colitis
  • [12:00] The link between your inflammatory CRP marker and far infrared therapy
  • [14:40] The difference between traditional vs infrared saunas
  • [17:01] The affordable far infrared therapy you can use in your own home
  • [21:35] The problem with using electric heating pads to help our IBD symptoms
  • [26:41] The best infrared heating pad you are going to want to buy today
  • [30:10] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

The Gut Love Community

UTK Jade Far Infrared Heating Pad

Far Infrared Mineral Heat Lamp

The 3 Best Far Infrared Heating Pads

Far Infrared Heating Pad (small one)

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Far Infrared Saunas Detoxification Benefits

Far Infrared Radiation (FIR): Its Biological Effects and Medical Implications

National Institutes of Health Human Microbiome Project

Environmental Determinants of Chronic Disease and Medical Approaches: Recognition, Avoidance, Supportive Therapy, and Detoxification

Far Infrared radiation induces changes in gut microbiota and activates GPCRs in mice

Can Heating Pads Cause Cancer? Ask Dr. Weil

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:50] Hey there mama, welcome to the podcast and thanks for sharing this time and this space with me today. And I’ve gotta start this episode with a question. Because I’m wondering if we have this in common. Have you ever had a work project or a project you’re working on with the kids at home where you start in one direction and then partway through the project, it becomes something completely different, equally wonderful, but in a whole different direction? One you never could have expected?

I think this happens a lot with us unbound creative types. We see so many possible directions and we feel compelled to move in new directions all the time.

Some would call us flighty. I prefer unbound creative.

Well, this episode is a case of exactly that. My unbound creativity sending me in a new direction. What started out as me thinking about a behind the scenes episode that I was so excited to share with you took off on a whole new, but equally beautiful direction. After having Crohn’s for as long as I have, I’ve realized that sometimes when life changes course, the best thing to do is just go with it.

So, this behind the scenes episode I was planning for today was about my IBD Healing Morning Start. I’ve personally been doing this health focused way to start my day forever, and I’ve have had so much success with it and have seen my clients have amazing results with it too, but instead of this week’s topic, I promise to bring it back next week. I don’t know about you, but I love a good behind the scenes. Sneak peaks into the real-life way that something gets done is always fascinating to me, and I definitely still want to share it with you. You’ll just have to come back and join me next week for that.

THE BEST PART OF MY MORNING START

But within my morning routine is this mechanism called a far infrared light therapy. It’s so important to my daily life and the more I thought about what to share with you, I felt like I needed to explain its benefits, why I use it and how I use it, different types that benefit IBD… that I just started thinking about everything I had to share with you just on this topic alone. So just know that we’ll get back my IBD morning start next week, and this week, I’ve just got to tell you about far infrared light and what it could mean for your IBD healing regime.

WHAT CAN FAR INFRARED LIGHT DO FOR YOUR IBD?

When it comes to far infrared light, we’ve got to start at the beginning. If you’ve been around The Cheeky Podcast for a while, you know that I’m incapable of glossing over things. It’s probably a strength and a weakness of mine (in an argument my husband would definitely say a weakness), but the way I see it, if you’re going to heal from this complicated chronic illness, you’ve got to have all the facts. So let’s dive into all the facts about far infrared light and hopefully by the end of this episode, you’ll see exactly how it could be a huge benefit for you.

[05:10] Sometimes shortened to FIR- far infrared light at its most basic form is the frequency of invisible light that’s generated naturally by the sun. Using FIR therapy means that you use the low energy heat that comes from the far end of the infrared spectrum. With me so far? Cool.

FIR can be a completely safe and natural addition to your IBD wheel of wellness. I definitely want to make it clear right from the start that I’m not saying FIR is a cure-all for IBD. As far as I’m concerned with all the information scientists, doctors, and researchers have on Crohn’s and colitis at this point, there is no cure-all for IBD. But when we add FIR to our healing regime of food, lifestyle modifications, mindset techniques, supplements and/or medications when we need them, and we add in FIR, it makes our IBD wheel of wellness, that imaginary and multi-pronged healing wheel we all keep close to fight IBD, it makes that wheel even stronger.

If this sounds intriguing to you, I want you to delve a bit deeper with me to find out what types of challenges and conditions can be benefited from using far infrared light. This is where the rabbit hole of preparing for the episode took over my brain because the research really fascinated me. You know I’m an evidenced-based research girl. I geek out over scientific research, and when I started looking at all the ailments that are research-backed in favor of far infrared light, I was amazed.

For our podcast, of course, since we are IBDer’s, I want to focus on the benefits for the digestive system, but I also know that we don’t live in an IBD bubble and you might be experiencing other challenges as well, so let me tell you about some of the conditions I read promising research studies about when it comes to FIR therapy. I’ll link to these studies in the show notes in case you want to dig deeper with me.

THE 8 AREAS OF HEALTH THAT CAN BENEFIT FROM FAR INFRARED LIGHT

So, I found research backing the benefits of FIR in eight areas. Those areas are: detoxification, cardiovascular issues, metabolism and fitness, decreasing both inflammation and pain, increasing longevity, neurological benefits (specifically for Alzheimer’s and dementia), boosting immune function and decreasing infections, and lastly skin and aging (mostly with wound healing and circulation).

Three of these areas are of particular benefit for us with IBD: detoxification, lowering inflammation/pain, and increasing our immune function because these are the areas that can have a big impact on our digestive system. I want to tell you a little bit more about how the studies I found talked about these three areas because this is where the healing magic can happen for us specifically.

THE BIGGEST TOXIN UPSET FOR IBDer’s

I found the most research on FIR being used as a detoxifier. This could be of large benefit for us. We all know that everyone, no matter who they are, gets exposed to toxins on a daily basis. Toxins in our environment can cause cellular and even DNA damage. Toxins can build up in our system and create oxidative stress, endocrine disruption (so disruption at the hormone level). Toxins can create carcinogenesis (or the development of cancers), toxins can create enzyme inhibition (like we were talking about on the podcast last week with foods like nuts and grains), but when it comes to toxins, the one that impacts us IBDer’s the most is that this buildup of toxins can create bacterial imbalance in our gut.

According to a study by the Human Microbiome Project, toxins and heavy metals have the potential to alter our gut flora—that’s all those little bugs and critters roaming around in our gut. Appetizing, I know! In a healthy gut, there’s a balance between the good bugs and the bag bugs, but in an IBD gut, the bug balance moves to an out of control state. When this happens, according to the study, our digestive tract starts having problems with the absorption of nutrients, with elimination of waste, with immune function. All of these digestive symptoms can be impacted when our toxic load gets too high.

All of this toxin/gut disruption is bad enough, but these effects that stem from our gut can also become more systemic, affecting our whole body system with increased inflammation.

When we’ve got IBD, we know gut disruption and inflammation all too well. FIR therapy research shows that it can be used as a detoxifier for this gut dysbiosis and the inflammation affecting the entire body. 

I also mentioned finding research on FIR helping to alleviate pain and reduce inflammation. In one study that I’ll link in the show notes, FIR therapy was able to lower blood serum levels of C-reactive protein or your CRP level. You might recognize from your bloodwork that your doctor ordered as it’s a really common marker for gastroenterologists to check to look at your inflammation levels. Lowering our CRP through FIR therapy can mean big things for us.

In terms of pain relief, I’ve seen FIR therapy work personally for myself, my hubby and my kids when they have sports related strains, sprains, or muscle pain. For me, I’ve had it help my osteoarthritis that’s creeped up after years of using prednisone back 20 years ago in my doctor prescribed steroid days.

Far infrared light has also been shown to increase cellular resistance to stress and viruses as it boosts the immune system. These are both huge wins for us.

So, lots of well-researched, scientifically proven benefits, the big bonuses for us being that FIR therapy can help with detoxification, the reduction of pain and inflammation, and boosting of the immune system.

Win. Win. Win.

[13:37] Now that you’ve heard about the benefits, it’s time to figure out how you’re going to get some far infrared light into your life. As I teased at the top of the show, I get my FIR therapy in the morning. Let’s figure out how you can get yours.

THE MACK DADDY OF INFRARED THERAPY

When it comes to FIR therapy, the mack daddy of all sources is the infrared sauna. If you’ve been in a sauna before, you can picture what I’m talking about. It’s a large wooden box with a door. You enter and either heat sweat or heat steam to feel the health benefits. An infrared sauna is similar but not as hot. Remember this is low heat we’re talking about, but because it literally penetrates under the skin, it can be just as healing and powerful.

So, where a traditional sauna heats the air around you and then in turn heats your body, the infrared heat is using invisible light at low levels. Like I said, this type of heat is able to penetrate the skin, and it penetrates at a depth of 1.5 inches. So instead of feeling all sweaty and uncomfortable (like in a traditional sauna), we feel more of a gentle, relaxing heat.

And by the way, just to give you all the scoop on infrared saunas, just know that within the world of infrared, there are actually three different types of infrared saunas to choose from. There’s far infrared, which is the type of light we’re focused on today, there’s near infrared, and full spectrum infrared light. If you decided to try out an infrared sauna or buy one for your home, it’s definitely a good idea to research the different types so you can pick the best one for you. I just wanted you to know these terms before you start your search. Most people recommend anywhere from 15-20 minute sessions in infrared saunas.

HOW MUCH DOES THE INFRARED SAUNA COST?

If you have anywhere from $2,000 to 7,000 to spend, you can have one of these babies installed right in your home. I don’t have one but it’s definitely a dream of mine. You can also search for an infrared sauna in your neighborhood by looking online. Some functional medicine providers or spas have them to be rented for use.

THE AFFORDABLE OPTION FOR FAR INFRARED LIGHT AT HOME

If the sauna isn’t an option for you, you can still get an affordable far infrared light option in your own home with a FIR lamp. Picture a smallish, four wheeled contraption with a metal long poll, bendy arm, and a heat lamp at the top. I think it looks a lot like an IV stand—you know the stand that holds an IV bag. You might have seen this if you’ve ever spent some time in the hospital. The top of the wheely stand holds a heat lamp instead of the IV bag.

This is one of the types of far infrared light that I use in my home. My acupuncturist recommended to me it a while back. She used it in our sessions and thought that I would benefit from at home use as well. I love it because it’s convenient. I keep it next to my bed so I can use it while laying down. It’s definitely become a big part of my morning routine.

The FIR lamp can be positioned anywhere on your body that you need it. Your back, your arm, your belly… You position the metal poll with the heat lamp on it about 12 inches above the part of your body you want it to focus on and heat for about 30 minutes. The lamp takes a little while to warm up (10-15 minutes) so plan for that warm up time. I’ll tell you what I do in those 10-15 minutes in my behind the scenes IBD healing morning routine episode next week. There’s not a wasted moment as I focus on morning healing to start and take through my whole day in my best health possible. The FIR lamp also has an auto shut off feature so it will automatically turn off if you decide to do it at bedtime instead of in the morning. Just in case you fall asleep.

The FIR lamp works best when it come in contact with your bare skin so just be sure to pull up your sleeve or shirt or pant leg before using it. When I use it on my belly, I pull my shirt up a bit and lower my pants to hip level. That way the lamp can focus on my small and large intestine. I’ll link to the FIR lamp I have in the show notes if you want to check it out. It’s the one that my acupuncturist has in her office. It runs about $140 on Amazon—lots cheaper than the infrared sauna.

THE FAR INFRARED SOURCE WE ALL NEED

There’s one more source of the far infrared light that we have to talk about because it’s particularly useful for us with Crohn’s and colitis. And that’s a far infrared heating pad. Shout a hell yes if ever used an electric heating pad or a hot water bottle when your abdomen becomes achy, swollen, bloated, or gassy. We’ve all done that from time to time. I’ve definitely had periods on my Crohn’s journey where my heating pad felt like my best, inseparable friend.

[21:35] Well, the problem with heating pads is that there is some preliminary evidence that repeated use may be harmful for you. Electric heating pads emit EMF’s—electromagnetic frequencies or electromagnetic radiation. One study published in the British Journal of Cancer revealed an increased risk of leukemia in children after too much exposure to EMF’s.  Most of the research studies surrounding EMF’s focuses on cell phone and wi-fi exposure, so it’s tough to find heating pad specific research. But Dr. Andrew Weil, the father of modern integrative medicine, speaks directly about heating pad risk, and I quote: Because I can’t say for sure that EMF’s pose no risks, I would advise you to use a non-electric heating pad.

Well, if electric heating pads aren’t advisable to sooth our aching bellies, what are we left with? Enter the far infrared heating pad. I seriously love this invention. Are you familiar with these? Healing, soothing heat therapy to help us get rid of the pain, the bloating, and gas, without high levels of EMF exposure.

THE POWER OF 126 NATURAL JADE STONES

I love far infrared heating pads so much that I have two of them at my house (actually 3, but I ended up giving 1 away to my younger son) so in my personal possession, there’s two. One of my two is large and heavy. It’s made by the company UTK. It’s made with 126 natural and certified jade stones that emit negative ions when they heat up. These stones promote oxygenation, detoxification, and lower inflammation throughout the whole body.

I’ll link to my large heating pad in the show notes so you can check it out. It costs about $159 on Amazon. I love that it has multiple temperature settings, and not just low, medium, and high like on a regular electric heating pad. It has actual temperature settings that go from 103 degrees to 159 degrees. It has a timer that goes up to 2 hours and an auto shut off feature. This FIR heating pad even has a memory function that remembers my time and temperature from its last use.  I love this heating pad.

THE PROBLEM WITH THE 126 JADE STONES

Now, truth be told, I bought this heating pad for my belly. I was dealing with some adhesions in my small intestine from past small bowel resections and it was causing pain and bloating after eating in my belly. I really didn’t want to use a an electric heating pad while I was working hard to try to solve this problem without surgery. I knew it was a long haul issue and I didn’t want to use expose myself to high levels of EMF’s straight to my belly every time I ate.

I was really excited to find this heating pad. But what I didn’t realize is that 126 jade stones are freakin’ heavy. And all that heaviness, for me at least, didn’t feel that great on my achy belly. It was just too heavy. But what I did realize is that this mat is the perfect cure for when my back, or arm, or leg aches. I also loved using it when for gallbladder used to act up. And I mention it here because I just want to give you all the facts. Maybe you won’t have the same problem with it. We’re all different, right? Maybe the weight on your belly feels soothing to you. This is a great FIR heating pad and I love using it for everything except my belly. Definitely worth checking out.

GOLDIE LOCKS FINDS THE INFRARED HEATING PAD THAT FITS JUST RIGHT

Now after my experience with the too heavy for my belly FIR pad, I did a little more research and found another FIR heating pad that was just right for my belly. It’s lighter, it’s very plush, and it’s the perfect fit for me. It still has auto shut off, and multiple temperature options from 113-149 degrees. Plus it’s smaller than my other one so it’s more portable and I can take it with me wherever I go. I’ll link to this lighter weight pad in the show notes so you can check it out. The lightweight pad costs about $80.

[27:05] So there you have it… far infrared devices— from high end saunas to in the home heat lamps and heating pads. These helpful additions to your gut healing regime (your wheel of wellness as I call it) are worth a first or a second look for their detoxification, inflammation, and immune benefits. Check out all the information and research studies I’m posting in the show notes and you can judge for yourself. In my extensive search to find out all the nitty gritty about how FIR works and who it works best for, I didn’t come across any studies showing a negative impact or side effects of these devices if used properly, but if you have any reason to believe that you might have a bad reaction or maybe you have super sensitive skin, or heart problems (especially with regard to the saunas), consult your doctor and see if there’s any contraindication for you.

I can’t wait to hear from you about which FIR method you choose. Let me know. Shoot me an email at hello@karynhaley.com and let’s continue the FIR conversation.

Remember next week, we’re back with another The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD episode—long title right? I’m thinking of starting to refer to it as TCP as all the cool kids have an acronym for their podcast. OK, let me try it out—Next week on TCP, it’s a behind the scenes of my IBD healing morning routine. What do you think? A bit cheesy, right? The jury is still out on that. Maybe I just need to lose the announcer voice. Let me know what you think.

Anyhoo, I can’t wait to share my first behind the scenes episode with you next week. Until then, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Chat soon!

[29:33] Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at The Cheeky Podcast.

One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This podcast, video, and blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 25: Coconut Flour 101: A Superfood Flour for Super IBD Healing

Oh, the mysterious coconut flour. It can be a great addition to your gut healing diet because it’s anti-inflammatory, it’s high in protein and fiber, and it gives those of us on a gut healing diet a healthy way to eat baked goods like cookies and muffins.

Unfortunately, I see moms with Crohn’s and colitis try it and quickly give up. Truth be told, it’s tricky to use and it just doesn’t bake like other flours. But before you give up on coconut flour after one attempt, listen to this episode of The Cheeky Mom.

It’s going to help you look at coconut flour in a whole new way. And before it’s done, you’ll have everything you need to be a coconut flour baking pro!

We’re talking about:

  • Why coconut flour is a superfood flour for those with Crohn’s and colitis
  • How to not let the coconut flour learning curve deter you when it comes to figuring out how to bake with it
  • 11 amazing ways to use coconut flour in your cooking and baking
  • The foolproof way to get started with coconut flour if you want to try it out today

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be ready to start dive into coconut flour with confidence and excitement as you add this superfood to your gut healing tool belt.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [04:50] What coconut flour and Duncan Hines cake mix has in common
  • [06:21] Why moms with IBD are the perfect group to use coconut flour
  • [09:21] If you can’t use coconut flour as a substitute in a 1 to 1 ratio, how can you use it?
  • [12:55] The top 3 egg substitutes if you want to use coconut flour but can have eggs.
  • [18:30] The best coconut flour cookbook to help you get stared with coconut flour
  • [20:10] 3 situations where coconut flour may not be the best approach for you
  • [23:20] The best places to buy the best quality coconut flour
  • [26:49] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Get your Coconut Flour Beginner’s Recipe Collection FREE Today

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

The Healthy Coconut Flour Cookbook by Erica Kerwien

Tropical Traditions Organic Coconut Flour

Nuts.com Organic Coconut Flour

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:51] Hello and welcome to our little slice of heaven, The Cheeky Podcast. Did you know this is our 25th episode? Yes it is. I can’t believe it. Time has flown by and I’m still loving sharing this space with you. Thank you dear listener for spending this time with me each week. I so appreciate you for being on this IBD healing journey with me.

Let’s keep the journey going, shall we?

This week, I’m loving our topic. It’s one of my favorite IBD foodie topics. We’re talking all things coconut flour. What is it, Why you should use it, how to use it, what IBD healing diets use coconut flour, and the best places to get your hands on it.

Now, how familiar are you with coconut flour? Have you heard of it before? It’s risen in popularity in recent years, especially since grain free diets have made their way onto the gut healing stage. It often gets lumped in with almond flour, but actually it’s quite different in many respects. Let’s find out more about this amazing superfood flour so that if you want to try it out for your own gut healing (and in my opinion flavorful) journey, you’ll be able to get started today.

GET YOUR OWN COCONUT FLOUR RECIPES TO HELP YOU GET STARTED

In fact, if you’re really excited by the end of this episode, I suggest you download a copy of my coconut flour for beginner’s recipe collection. It’s three recipes with coconut flour as the star ingredient and I created these recipes specifically made with beginners in mind. You can grab your copy of my coconut flour for beginner’s recipe collection by looking in the show notes or by going to karynhaley.com/coconut

For all my coconut flour newbies out there, let’s start at the very beginning.

COCONUT FLOUR… WHAT IS IT?

Coconut flour is made from the meat that’s on the inside of the coconut. When coconut milk is made, there’s a natural byproduct of that production. These leftovers are little bits of coconut meat. They get dried and ground, and that becomes coconut flour.

[03:55] When I recommend coconut flour to clients, I often get asked about the taste. Everyone knows that coconuts themselves, shredded coconut, even coconut oil and coconut milk have a distinct coconutty taste. Some people love that taste, like me, and others, like my son who’s got the nose of a black bear when it comes to coconut, detests it. The good news about coconut flour, whether you like traditional coconuts or not, is that coconut flour doesn’t really have that strong coconut smell or taste. When you bake with coconut flour, it almost takes like Duncan Hines or Betty Crocker yellow cake mix. You know, yellow cake? Not white cake, not lemon cake… yellow cake. Oh yeah, that’s gotta be good for you! Chemicals, preservatives, added sugar… Well, this “yellow cake” is good for you.

Coconut flour is denser than traditional flour and it definitely bakes differently. It’s not a 1 to 1 flour so you can’t just swap it out for any other flour. We’ll talk more about how to use it in just a bit, but for now, know that coconut flour is highly absorbent so it increases the amount of liquid you use when baking with it.

Coconut flour is highly nutritious. It’s high in fiber, high in good quality fats that are good for your brain, your heart and your gut. It’s low in carbohydrates, high in protein, and high in minerals like manganese, selenium, iron, and potassium. It’s also high in antioxidants and it’s anti-inflammatory.

I love it when something that tastes great is also great for me.

[06:21] Besides what I’ve just mentioned, why would you, IBD mama, want to start using coconut flour?

Well, for starters, coconut flour is naturally gluten and grain free. This is music to our IBD mom ears. Both gluten and grains can be challenging to digest when we have Crohn’s or colitis. It’s nice to know that there’s a flour we can use to still make the baked goods we crave and love.

Coconut flour is great because you can still use it even if you’re allergic or sensitive to tree nuts because coconuts are actually considered a seed, not a nut. Weird, but true. And even if you don’t have an allergy, it’s still a better option than almond flour because nuts and nut flours can be quite inflammatory. That’s why several gut healing diets have you wait to use them until enough healing has taken place.

Coconut flour doesn’t have this problem.

In fact, most nuts and nut flours contain enzyme inhibitors that can do a number on your digestive system and your small intestine. If you’ve ever heard about soaking nuts before eating them, this is the reason why. We have to remove as much of these inhibitors as possible before we eat them so they don’t negatively impact our digestive tract. And when we look at other grain flours, even gluten free flours, they contain phytic acid, another gut disruptor. Phytic acid gloms onto foods and prevents our body from getting the nutritional benefit we’re looking for. Coconut flour only contains small amounts of enzyme inhibitors so it’s much gentler on our digestive tract, without preventing us from benefiting from its nutritional value.

Coconut flour is probably the healthiest flour around. It actually lowers the glycemic index of the baked good it’s in. So no sugar rush. How cool is that?

I use it for all of these reasons, but mostly I use it for how it tastes in my baked goods. Rich, almost buttery, like how real baked goods should taste.

Now that we know what it is, how do we use it?

Coconut flour, as great as it tastes and as healthy as it is, is not like any other flour you’ve ever worked with. Using coconut flour takes practice because it’s just so different that other flours.

[09:25] It’s not a grain flour or even a nut flour, so you can’t use it in a 1 to 1 ratio for baking. In fact, it’s more like a 1 to ¼ ratio. So, that means for every 1 cup of traditional flour you use (gluten free or not), you’ll use ¼ cup of coconut flour. And because it’s so absorbent, you’ll also use a lot more liquid with it. Plan on about 2 Tbsp of liquid for every 2 tbsp of coconut flour you use.

I mentioned before that coconut flour is dense, so when you’re measuring it for a recipe, there’s no need to pack in down. The lighter the better. Before you measure this type of flour, I recommend that you give it a quick whisk or a fluff with a fork. This aerates the flour a bit and makes sure there’s no clumps.

COCONUT FLOUR AND EGGS TO TOGETHER LIKE PB AND J

Eggs (lots of eggs) are a big part of baking with coconut flour. In most recipes, you’ll use about 1 egg per ¼ cup of coconut flour. So for example, it’s not that unusual for a coconut flour recipe to call for 6 eggs as opposed to 2 or maybe 3 eggs in other baked good recipes. The coconut flour just soaks those eggs right up.

Sometimes coconut flour recipes call for just the yolk or extra yolks. If I’m using coconut flour to make a special dessert, one I’m serving to friends or family and I really want a moist dessert, I’ll even separate my eggs out. Yolk in one bowl, whites in another. I’ll give the yolks a quick stir and drop them in with all the other ingredients. Then, in the egg white bowl, I’ll beat those up with a hand mixer until soft peaks form. Then I’ll gently fold them into the mixed batter. It makes a light, but still rich and moist dessert every time.

WHAT IF I’M SENSITIVE TO EGGS?

Now, if you’re sensitive to eggs, you might be thinking, oh no! I don’t eat eggs, but know that even if you don’t do eggs, you can still use coconut flour. Just use the same kind of egg substitutes as you would normally use. When it comes to eggless coconut flour baking, I like to use Vital proteins gelatin if I’m substituting eggs. Some people substitute with agar-agar. You can also use a ¼ cup of applesauce per egg or ½ of a ripe banana per egg. There’s work arounds there.

So now we know what it is and why how to use it, the next question to answer is: What can you make with coconut flour?

OH THE PLACES COCONUT FLOUR CAN GO!

Oh so many, many things… my favorites are breads, biscuits, cookies, muffins, waffles, crepes, scones… to name some desserty foods. But coconut flour can also be used as a coating for chicken or fish fingers, you can fry with it, and it also thickens soups and stews.

Speaking of stew, my husband’s family, being from the south, has this passed down for generations this delicious gumbo recipe. This is some seriously delish gumbo. Although my hubby used to make it for me before we were married, he would never share the recipe with me. I guess it was kind of like my family’s secret Italian sauce recipe. My grandma wasn’t sharing that for anything in the world.

But finally, on our wedding day, at the reception, I was deemed worthy of the gumbo recipe and it got passed down to me. Guess I was finally in the gumbo club. We’ll, of course, this recipe has a roux—a stir continuously, never stopping for 30 min roux that’s the whole basis for the gumbo. If you don’t have a good roux, your gumbo falls flat. And just in case you’ve never cooked with a roux before, and I never had before I met my southern hubby, a roux is this paste (I’m sure every chef is cringing at the word paste, but that’s what it looks like to me) made with meat drippings, oil, and flour. The roux thickens the gumbo and if you stir it just right for exactly 30 minutes, and you also drink a beer while you stir it (at least that’s what my hubby’s family does). It also gives the gumbo its rich, golden brown color.

Once I started the SCD, I figured I’d seen my last days of gumbo, until one fateful day when my hubs said, I’d really like you to be able to eat this gumbo. What do you say we try making a coconut flour roux? And wouldn’t you know it (or this story would have a terrible ending), the coconut flour worked beautifully. The roux was thick and golden brown, and ever since, the coconut flour roux has been our go-to for gumbo night.

[16:55] Bottom line? Coconut flour is super versatile. It’s not just for baked goods. Oh no! Stews and soups and gravies too.  I should also mention that it works great as a combination flour too. I like to blend it with almond flour, but it can be blended with traditional or gluten free flours too.

THE BEST INFORMATION FOR COCONUT FLOUR NEWBIES

This is a wealth of great information and you’ll need all of it if you want to branch off into the wilds of experimenting with coconut flour. But truth be told, it’s a tricky one so if you’re ready to give it a go, but you’ve never tried it before, do yourself a favor, pick a tried and true coconut flour recipe. And there’s a lot of them out there. I have to give a plug for my favorite one. It’s called The Healthy Coconut Flour Cookbook and it’s by Erika Kerwien. I highly recommend her waffles. Yum! And also her popovers, delish! I’ll link the book in the show notes.

And of course there’s my coconut flour beginner’s collection recipes to get you started as well. They’re great for experimenting at first and if you love them, do yourself a favor and grab a copy of Erica’s cookbook. Hopefully these recipes are just the nudge you need to get started. Of course, the internet is full of recipes too. So anyway you decide to go, you’ve got to start trying this wonderful flour.

Moving on to gut healing diets. What diets do we see this flour the most?

[19:28] All of the grain free diets. Specific Carbohydrate Diet, GAPS, Paleo, Keto… of course you can use it on any diet, even gluten free diets, but those are the diets who talk about coconut flour specifically.

A WORD OF CAUTION BEFORE YOU GET STARTED ON COCONUT FLOUR

Now, I want to mention just a couple notes of caution before you start using coconut flour:

[20:10] I don’t recommend coconut flour for anyone new to a gut healing diet like SCD or GAPS. Wait until all your symptoms clear up before getting started with any type of flour. Even though it isn’t as inflammatory as almond flour, there are still mild amount of those digestive inhibitors. Plus, you want this to be a small part of your diet, not the whole enchilada. So use the broth and the veggies and other gut healing foods first, before you get started with this. But if you are just dipping a toe in, or if you already follow a whole foods or a gluten free approach to help your Crohn’s or colitis, or you’ve been remission for a while, go for it. Try trying a few different recipes to see what you like. Go for it.

Also, just like you can overdo it with almond flour, you can overdo it with coconut flour. A treat is a treat, no matter which flour you use.

And there’s two cases where I see coconut flour not go over so well with IBD moms. #1 is with people who have active gallbladder challenges. Coconut flour is high in fat. Add in the eggs, and you’ve just added in more fat. Good fat, but more fat and the gallbladder doesn’t distinguish between the good and the bad fats. If your gallbladder is not functioning properly, coconut flour may not be for you.

And the other case where coconut flour might be not advised is if you are sensitive to salicylates. These are a natural chemicals made by plant products. This sensitivity can cause headaches, rashes, hyperactivity. You’ll want to stay away from coconut flour in that case as well.

But let’s say you’ve got no problems with coconut flour, your in the right place on your gut healing journey, and you’re ready to dive in. You’re ready to buy. Let me help you get started.

If you just want to check it out in one or two recipes, don’t bother with large bags or buying online. Just buy it at your local grocery store. Most sell it now, maybe on the health food isle, but they have it. Bob’s Red Mill or Arrowhead will do, but if you decide you like it and want to get bigger bags, I’d order it online. A company called nuts.com sells organic coconut flour in bulk at a good price and Tropical Traditions organic is also a really high-quality brand.

OK mama, today we answered several common questions about coconut flour to make sure you are ready to get started—today if you want to. We talked about what it is, why to use it, how to use it, we talked about what gut healing diets it’s used on and I gave you a few cautionary ideas to think about. Lastly, we talked about where to buy it when you’re ready to get started.

ARE YOU READY TO GET STARTED?

As always, I’m here if you have any questions at all. Coconut flour is different and it can be a challenge in the beginning. Stick with it though. It’s so work your time for nutrition as well as taste.

Happy coconut flour baking and cooking my friend.

Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

[26:12] Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep: 24 Soup’s On: The Best Gut Repair Soups to Bust that IBD Flare Up (they’re great for remission too)

What comes to mind when I say the word soup? It seems like everyone has a relationship with soup, positive or negative.

For me, soup is full of warm, full, and rich childhood memories and also gut soothing and healing moments. If you already love soup or you’re open to using it to help fulfill your IBD flare-up busting and remission seeking goals, you’re going to love this episode.

We’re diving into the world of soup as a healing mechanism for Crohn’s and colitis. Of course, not all soup is created equal. We’re certainly not talking about the Campbell’s variety when it comes to gut healing. Find out the 3 components that must be part of your gut healing concoction and so much more in this episode.

We’re dishing on everything you need to make soup the star of your gut healing regime.

We’re talking about:

  • How to include gut healing veggies in your soup if you feel like everything you eat (including vegetables) makes you sick
  • The gut healing medicinal properties of herbs and spices (and which one to use for your specific IBD symptoms)
  • The key difference between gut repair soup and IBD maintenance soup (you won’t believe how similar they actually are)

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be ready to start your own Soup’s On gut repair movement in your own home. And you’ll have all the recipes you need to get started today.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [05:45] The 3 must have components every gut repair soup must have
  • [09:30] Safe veggies to include in your soup, and ones you should definitely stay away from
  • [12:40] The gut healing medicinal properties of herbs and spices—you’re going to want to keep these on hand in your kitchen to help make your gut healing soup with your IBD symptoms in mind
  • [15:52] The spice to keep on hand to stop your kid’s vomiting in its tracks
  • [21:35] The power of putting vegetables you never thought you could eat into a digestible form
  • [25:25] What to do when there’s a soup ingredient you just don’t tolerate
  • [29:18] How to find the best time of day (when you feel well) to make your gut repair soup
  • [32:49] 3 best practice rules to using soup to keep you in remission longer
  • [36:20] My gut repair Soup’s On Recipe Booklet is waiting for you at karynhaley.com/soup
  • [38:16] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Get your Soup’s On Recipe Booklet (with 8 soup recipes) Free Today

Episode 15: Seven Healing Gems Every IBD Mom Needs to Know About

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Super Herbs and Spices for Gut Health

5 Vegetable Broth Benefits

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]
[00:52] Well hey there my friend- it’s wonderful to connect with you again. Aren’t podcasts the best invention since almond flour? I’m sure if you listen to this podcast, you probably listen to at least 5 or 6, or 10 others if you’re like me. I’m a podcast junkie and my listening tastes are really eclectic. I love cooking breakfast with my news and politics podcast in my ear in the morning, there’s motivational and life affirming podcasts I might listen to during my workout, and then there’s light and easy podcasts I like to listen while I’m in my car. The other day, I was driving to my dad’s house while smiling and laughing to myself as Amy Poehler was interviewed by Dax Shepard on the Armchair Expert podcast. I’m sure you remember Amy from SNL and Parks and Rec. She’s hilarious!

Amy said something so laugh out loud funny to me, I thought about sharing it with you as soon as I heard it. And if you’re at least 40, like me, this will be particularly funny to you. Here’s what she said: She said anybody under 30 thinks everybody over 40 is 65. This was so funny to me because it’s exactly what my kids think of me. Like Amy said, stop calling me boomer! Sorry, sons, Gen Xer all the way! It’s so funny how are kids see us isn’t it? To them there’s just young and old. Wait til they reach parenthood, and we get to see their kids give them hell for stuff like this. I’ll try not to say I told you so.

Anyway, podcasts rock. Especially during a time when we need connection more than ever. Let’s connect, shall we? We’ve got a great topic to talk about today.

SOUP IS AWESOME FOR GUT REPAIR AND REMISSION MAINTENANCE

[03:00] Soup. You might think I’m being sarcastic about it being a great topic, but I’m so not. I love talking about the power of gut healing soup.

What’s your relationship with soup? Everybody has one, whether it’s positive or negative. It’s funny, sometimes I’ll work with clients who love soup. They’ll eat 2-3 bowls a day when they’re in gut healing mode. Other times I’ll hear from a client, anything but soup. Please no soup. I hate soup.

I’m in the love soup category. To me soup is comfort food. It’s memories of my childhood and my mom, her always making us homemade chicken soup when we were sick as kids and partly because it was the last thing I fed her before she passed away—that might sound morbid to you, but it’s comforting to me. So soup, it’s my past, it’s my present, and in my Crohnie world, it will always means healing, soothing, comfort.

I like soup so much. I even, feel free to gasp here, eat it in the summer. Maybe not as much as in the winter, but I don’t say eeewww or ick if I’m offered it in the summer. It still tastes great to me. I like soup, no matter what time of year it is. If that’s the way you feel about soup, even just in the winter, you’re going to love this episode. We’re breaking down how soup can be your best go-to gut repair food.

And we’ll do this by first, examining the three components that must be in every bowl of soup if you’re using it as a gut soother and healer, we’ll talk about the two different methods of soup making to use depending on if you’re in gut repair mode or trying to maintain remission, and lastly, I’ll tell you how you can get my recipes for the best tasting gut repair soups that use the very ingredients we’re talking about today. And by the way, there’s both vegetarian and omnivore soups in the mix to suite everyone’s tastebuds and dietary needs.

THE #1 INGREDIENT EVERY GUT REPAIR SOUP STARTS WITH

[05:45] Let’s start with the three components that must be in every bowl you make when it comes to your new gut repair and remission sustaining bestie, soup. Must have component #1 is the heart of your soup. The ingredient you just can’t skimp on, no matter what and that’s the bone broth or meat stock. Every gut repairing soup starts with high quality bone broth. Homemade is best—chicken broth, beef broth… if you are vegetarian, a high-quality homemade vegetable broth. It’s really a must for the ultimate gut healing.

I’ve talked about broth and meat stock in previous episodes, probably most recently on episode 16: The Seven Healing Gems episode. I’ll link to it in the show notes if you want more in depth info on the health benefits of bone broth, but just know that bone broth is wonderfully full of collagen and gelatin which help heal the mucosal lining of our intestines and seal the gut if any leakiness is present. Bone broth can also help calm food sensitivities, help grow bacterial balance in your gut, help decrease inflammation in your entire body and boost your immune system. This is why bone broth is the basic building block in any soup aimed at gut repair.

DON’T WORRY IF YOUR VEGETARIAN, I’VE GOT YOU COVERED TOO!

If you’re a vegetarian, you can still reap the benefits of a rich, homemade, vegetable stock. And even if you’re not a vegetarian, it’s a great idea to rotate your stock to a veggie variety too. Vegetable stock is high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, it’s very alkalizing for the body. With IBD, sometimes our bodies tend toward an acidic environment and vegetable broth can help bring our pH into balance.

Both vegetable and bone broth stock are hydrating and that’s something we really need too when we are healing our digestive system or trying to keep remission going. I’m including a recipe for meat broth and vegetable broth in your soup recipes incase this is your first foray into homemade stock. I want you to be able to have this all-important soup base so you can get started right away with using soup to heal and also, so you see just how easy it is to make at home. Trust me, it’s so much healthier than store bought. You can take a couple hours to make a couple batches (and most of that time is the cooking of the stock- not you doing anything) and then freeze them to have on hand for when it’s time to make soup or drink the broth straight.

YOU’RE MUST HAVE SOUP COMPONENT #2

[09:30] What’s the second component that’s a must when it comes to gut healing soup? It’s loads and loads of veggies. The more the better. Not just any veggies though. When it comes to IBD repair, we’re talking low carb veggies. Not the kind of veggies that are high in carbohydrates that turn into sugar in your digestive system and keep the bad bacteria safe and toasty while we suffer. No, to the heck no. With gut repair and remission-based soup, we stay away from the higher carb veggies like potatoes (white and sweet), yams, corn, and chickpeas.

There are loads of lower carb, but super satisfying veggies you’ll want to stock up on when you’re making your gut repair and remission loving soup. Veggies like spinach and other greens like kale, beet greens, dandelion greens, and swiss chard. Plus, other veggies like mushrooms, onion, tomato, broccoli, asparagus, artichokes, cauliflower, all the squashes (butternut, acorn, spaghetti), zucchini, yellow squash, peppers, celery, carrot, leeks, cabbage… and if you’re thinking, she’s got to be kidding, I can’t digest any of those—I feel ya because I remember a time when I thought I couldn’t either. Hold that thought, I’m going to ask you to reserve judgement because in just a minute, I’m going to tell you how you can eat these vegetables, even in a flare.

I mentioned that these kinds of vegetables are lower in carbohydrates, but they aren’t low in nutrients. They have plenty of vitamin A and C, fiber, potassium, magnesium, and folate. All much needed nutrients for gut healing and repair. All in a form your body can digest and absorb—huge for busting that flare.

I promise, I’ll get back to how you’re going get all these nutritious veggies in, but stick with me as we round out the must have components of our soup. I will get to it. To recap, we started out our must have soup components with a rich, homemade meat or vegetable stock. We then talked about the repair power of vegetables (lots of veggies) and now we move on to gut repair component #3: herbs and spices.

IT’S TIME TO ADD SOME FLAVA-FLAV TO OUR GUT REPAIR SOUP

[12:40] Herbs and spices might just seem like a way to enliven your tastebuds and make vegetables tasty, but the cool thing about herbs is that they actually have medicinal and healing properties. So you can add a little flava flav to your gut healing soup while you make your digestive system happy. Love it when that happens. I mean, I’ll do anything to keep my gut happy, but when I get to do that and it tastes good, I’m so in.

There’s actually 10 herbs and spices I recommend you keep on hand, either as fresh herbs in a pot in your kitchen or from your garden if you’re into the fresh variety, or in a sacred spot in your kitchen in a small jar if you prefer the dried spice variety. And both are absolutely fine, and my spice cabinet is definitely a sacred, well-used spot. We all can’t have an herb garden sitting on our windowsill year-round so it’s nice to know dried spices are available at our local grocery store. And by the way, if you are using dried spices, I like to give them a little rub in the palm of my hand before adding them to the pot of soup. This re-releases the flavor in the herb and ensures you get a well flavored soup.

A TOP 10 LIST BETTER THAN DAVID LETTERMAN’S

So, here’s your Top 10 list of herbs and spices list. Move over David Letterman. Bet he never had herbs and spices on his famous top 10 lists. If you have a pen and paper handy, you might want to jot down some notes here. I’m not only going to give you the name of the herb, I’m also going to share with you the gut ailment it works best for. Personally, I keep all of these in stock in my kitchen, but it’s still nice to know which one works for which digestive symptom because then you’ll know what to grab as different challenges crop up and you’ll be all ready to make your gut loving soup when you don’t feel well, and you are in need of gut repair.

#1- Gingergreat for nausea, gas, bloating, general digestion needs

#2- Turmeric anti-inflammatory, full of antioxidants, lowers free radicals, and oxidative damage to our cells with its active ingredient—curcumin

#3- Cinnamon- not a lot of people think about cinnamon when making soup but, taste wise, it’s a great ingredient to bring out the flavors in chili or a squash soup. Digestively, it eases nausea and upset stomach (remember that for your kids if they have a stomach bug and are vomiting, it helped my kiddos a time or two)

#4- Basil- gas, abdominal pain, lots of different types: sweet, lemon, Thai basil, and my favorite for stress reduction holy basil

#5- Bay leaves- detoxifying for the digestive system, soothing for an irritable bowel

#6- Cardamom- good for mucus build up, gas, bloating, heartburn (quick side note, I have a couple clients who chew on the cardamom pods to get relief from heartburn and it definitely helps their symptoms)

#7- Rosemary- balancing for the bacteria in the gut

#8- Cumin- anti-inflammatory

#9 & #10 both have the same benefit, so I’ll group them together: thyme and oregano- both antibacterial and antifungal.

So, there you have it, your top 10 herbs and spices list. Definitely keep these on hand for digestive health and making a gut repair soup.  Of course, you won’t use them all in one soup, but keep them on hand and rotate them with your different batches of your gut repair goodness.

JUST A FEW LAST NOTES ABOUT HERBS AND SPICES

Just a couple last notes on herbs and spices before we move on, when buying these at the store, try to buy the highest quality you can afford. Organic is best. And stand alone spices are preferred instead of spice mixes. Spice manufacturers may add in additional anti-caking ingredients to bottles like this and our sensitive guts don’t need that.

How are things looking in your kitchen? Are you already stocked with these spices? Now is the perfect time to stock up and make sure you have these on hand for your super healing soup recipes.

So far we’ve talked about three must have components for any gut healing soup: quality stock, quality veggies, and quality herbs or spices. With these three things, there isn’t an amazing gut healing soup you can’t make. But what if you’re in a flare up and you feel like you just can’t tolerate some of these vegetables I mentioned earlier? What if you’re intestines are so inflamed that the idea of anything solid going in congers up an image of a fiery inferno inside your gut?

The best thing about a well-made, nutrient dense soup is that it can heal and repair your gut just as well as it can help you maintain your IBD remission. It’s amazing in that way. It’s all about putting whatever soup you choose in the best digestible and absorbable form for where your gut is in that moment.

Let’s talk about how to best make the soups in your Soups On Recipe Booklet if you’re in flare up mode. When your disease is active, and you’re having lots of symptoms—abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, bloody poops, rectal fissures or hemorrhoids, heartburn, bloating, smelly or frequent gas… Or we’re also talking about IBD non-gut symptoms that also can creep up like arthritis, skin rashes, fatigue, brain fog or anxiety, eye inflammation, loss of appetite, or mouth sores… and of course with our lovely chronic illness, you know as well as I do that there can be other symptoms as well. So, the gut repair soup is for you if you have any active disease at all.

THE 3 RULES OF GUT REPAIR SOUP

[21:35] When we’re talking gut repair soup, there’s three important rules to follow:

#1- the most important rule- making your soup into a form you can easily digest and easily absorb. That means using an immersion blender or pureeing it in a high-speed blender. Pureeing it until it’s smooth and creamy. This puts the soup in an easy to digest form. Suddenly, veggies you thought you couldn’t tolerate become tolerable. Greens like spinach, fiberous veggies like celery… when we blend these veggies into a smooth and creamy, deliciously soothing soup, now we can digest and absorb the healing nutrients in the food and begin to give our digestive system the food it needs for fuel and to repair.

I’VE CREATED A 8 SOUP RECIPES WITH YOU IN MIND

Now, in your Soup’s On Recipe Booklet that you can get in the show notes or by going to karynhaley.com/soup, you’ll see all kinds of delish soups that are good for the health of your digestive system. Every single one of them is either already a creamy style soup or one that can be purred. Pretty much any kind of soup I’ve encountered over the years, I’ve been able to put it in a smooth and creamy form, while still enjoying the richness of the flavors. Vegetable soup, soup with meat in it like bacon, chicken or beef, all of these soups can and should be purred when you are in the initial stages of gut healing. If you’ve never done this before, I know it might seem different, but I’ve done this myself with each of the soups in your recipe booklet and they taste great. All the nutrients and health factors you need without the difficulty in digesting them. Give your body what it needs to heal with gut repairing, creamy, soothing soup.

For gut repair soup rule #2, I want you to only use ingredients you tolerate. This might mean scaling back on an ingredient or two in a recipe for a short time until enough healing has taken place. Sometimes, the reason we don’t tolerate a particular food is because of the form it’s in. When our G.I. tract is inflamed, we need food to be pre-digested or broken down for us to tolerate. Other times, even the ingredients in a pureed soup might bother us. Maybe you’re having a histamine intolerance that’s causing rashes, and itchy, flakey skin. You might need to make your broth differently until the reaction calms down. Maybe there’s an herb like garlic that gives you too much gas because you’re dealing with small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, maybe you’re like me and you just have a true food sensitivity to a vegetable like peppers. And it doesn’t matter if the peppers you use are blended or not, you just don’t tolerate any pepper with skin on it—even if its blended.

Skip ingredients you don’t tolerate. Substitute them with another ingredient. For me with peppers, I always remove the skin (more like a roasted pepper) and then I can eat them. For you, it might be rosemary. Your just sensitive too it. Is there another herb you like that you could substitute? How about using thyme instead? I find it gives a great flavor to soups as well.

See what I’m saying here. No matter which soup recipe you try, if your intestines are irritated and inflamed, chances are there’s going to be an ingredient or two that doesn’t work for you. It doesn’t mean you need to scrap the idea of broth or veggies all together. It just means it’s time for some modifications and tweaks.

THE SOUP THAT WORKS FOR YOU, EVEN IF YOU’RE SENSITIVE TO ALL FOOD

I know this can be an overwhelming task if you’ve never experimented in this way before. I also know you can do it. It just takes a little bit of practice. My advice, if you don’t know what your food sensitivities are yet because right now, everything seems to bother you, start with just a very simple soup. One with very few ingredients. It might be just a vegetable broth with some carrot purred in it. I actually have a very simple soup like this in my Soup’s On Recipe Booklet. Start there, see how you do. If you need to pull back on some of the ingredients, go for it. Once some gut healing has taken place, you’ll be able to move on and add more ingredients and move on to other soups as well. The gut lining has an amazing capacity for quick healing when we give it the food it thrives on. And you never know, foods you thought you’d never be able to eat, may surprise you. I’ve personally experienced this with countless foods. It is such a beautiful thing.  

REACH OUT AND ASK YOUR QUESTION

And if you get stuck at all, know I’m here to help. I know this can be a daunting process in the beginning. Reach out and ask. I’m here to make this easy for you. Hello@karynhaley.com

So, when it comes to gut repair soup, with our 3 rules, just to remind us where we’re at, your #1 rule is blend your soup into a smooth and creamy concoction that’s easier to digest and absorb. Rule #2 is use only the ingredients you tolerate, and lastly, rule #3 when it comes to gut repair soup is: when you make it, make it count. If you’re going to all the trouble of making this healing liquid gold for your body when you don’t feel well, make a double batch to freeze the second one. The beauty of soups like this is that they freeze beautifully. In a leftover container, in mason jars, in silicon molds you can then remove and freeze for smaller portions… whatever works for you.

This will involve a little timing on your part. Something I’ve seen over and over with clients over the years is that when it comes to flares, there’s usually a time of day when we feel well and a time of day we feel worse. I wish there was a pattern to it, that everyone was the same… like everyone feels better in the morning and worse as the day goes on, but this isn’t the case. What I have seen is that many IBD mamas have patterns or cycles to their digestive symptoms. You might wake up in the morning and sit on the toilet off and on for a couple hours before things clear out and you feel well for the rest of the day. Things might flare up for you in the middle of the day where you get really fatigued and need to rest. For me, when I’m in a flare up, I always feel amazing in the morning. Before I would eat, I felt like I could conquer the world. After eating, I might feel crappy for the rest of the day.

So for me, I know that my best baking/cooking gut healing food time is right when I wake up. For you, it might be the middle of the day or at night. Find your time, and make your soup making count—make a double batch or two different soups and freeze one. I’m all about working smarter not harder so even if you don’t feel up to the double batch, never ever make a single serving. It takes just as much work to make that as a full batch of soup.

And even better still? Get your partner in on the soup making action. If you don’t feel well, it’s time for your partner to step up and help a mama out. Remember, when you feel better, you’ll pour all that love back into them.

Gut repair soup with 3 simple rules—done.

SHOULD I STILL EAT GUT REPAIR SOUP IF I’M IN REMISSION?

[31:50] OK, let’s say you’ve moved beyond the healing phase and you’re in remission. Can you imagine it mama? I want you to dare to dream my friend because it can be your reality. Once you are in remission, you want to stay that way. And it’s a tricky balance. Remission, especially in the beginning is like walking on a tight rope in the circus. One false move and splat, you’re back to ground zero. Trust me, I’ve walked this tight rope many times, it’s precarious and involves lots of maintenance and moving parts. It’s not the time to take your eye of the prize.

The same gut repair soup you’re making to heal your gut can be the same digestive remission soup you use to make sure you stay that way. It’s still full of the same nutrients and gut healing factors, but this time, you’re ready for more. Just like gut repair soup, remission soup has 3 rules or best practices too.

3 RULES FOR IBD REMISSION SOUP TO KEEP YOU HEALTHY LONGER

Rule #1- With maintenance soup, follow the recipe as is. There’s no need to puree or blend your veggies. Keep them chunky and hearty. If you’re feeling really well, you can even keep the veggies, as Italians say, al dente—with a little bite or crunch. Of course, if you prefer the smooth and creamy texture, that’s find too. Just know that when it comes to maintenance, you can branch out with your soup’s texture.

Rule #2- Now that you’re tolerating all the broths, the herbs/spices, and vegetables, it’s time to start branching out with ingredients that didn’t work for you before. Be careful not to go overboard here. We’re not talking about adding sugar or pasta noodles to your soup. We’re still talking low carb and low sugar to keep your inflammation down, and your immune system and bacterial balance in check.

Rule #3- Don’t get complacent and forget about your maintenance soup. I see this all the time. As time goes by, we feel well, we’ve got kids, responsibilities… we forget about our maintenance. There’s lots of work to be done to make sure we don’t flare and it’s easy to forget about the things you have in place that make remission possible. Your maintenance soup is a huge factor in keeping you feeling healthy.

During the early stages of gut repair soup, you’ll be consuming broth and soup 1-5 times a day. Once your symptoms resolve, it’s OK to back up on the soup, but not completely. I still have gut healing soup with the ingredients we’ve been talking about today regularly. It’s part of my healthy gut maintenance routine. And during times when I don’t feel like myself or I feel a flare up coming on, I hunker back down with gut repair soup, the flare up version.

Although homemade soup isn’t a cure all and there’s other healing options to put in place to but a flare up, when you have gut repairing soup with the quality ingredients we’ve been talking about today, it can be a hugely positive factor on your healing journey. And when it comes to remission, that is truly the most important time to keep those nutrients coming. For those of us with sensitive guts, the vigilance never stops.

ARE YOU READY TO START USING SOUP TO HELP REPAIR YOUR GUT?

Now, are you ready to start using soup for gut repair or maintenance? Let me help you get started with my Soup’s On Recipe Booklet.  I think I mentioned it earlier, but you can get my brand new Soup’s On Recipe Booklet right in the show notes, or you can get it by going to karynhaley.com/soup. This recipe guide has vegetarian and omnivore soups in it, it’s got two different stock recipes to be sure you have your must have components set before you begin, and it has several easy to make homemade soups that use the gut healing ingredients we’ve been talking about today. You’re going to love it! Head over to karynhaley.com/soup and it will be yours free now.

Can you tell how much I love talking about soup? Weird, right? This episode seriously lite me up! No matter where you’re at on your IBD healing journey, I hope you’ll start using soup to help you heal. It’s truly transformative. Happy soup making my friend.

Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Be well.

[37:42] Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep: 23 Top 3 Reasons Why NOW is the Best Time to Start the SCD

Do you ever think about the people who have come before you? The people who paved the way for your life to easier in some way.

When we think about the people who have come before us in the world of Crohn’s and colitis, we can’t look back without remembering the work of Dr. Sidney Haas (a pediatrician with ahead-of-his-time ideas about the healing power of food) and Elaine Gottschall (a devoted and scrapy mom turned biologist who found a way to heal her daughter’s struggles with colitis and then spread the message about this method to the world to give us all a plan for recovery).

These two unsung heroes are at the heart of why we all can have hope when it comes to quieting our IBD with food and why there’s never been a better time than NOW to start the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.

If you’ve been on the fence about when to start the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (or any other gut healing diet for that matter), it’s time to hop off and get started.

Today on the podcast, I’m giving you 3 reasons why there’s never been a better time in history to get started on putting food at the center of your IBD healing plan.

We’re talking about:

  • Unsung pioneers of the healing IBD with food movement who paved the way for your healing journey
  • Why waiters and flight attendants might just be the right people to help us on our quest to eat IBD healing food
  • How quarantining is the key to getting you off the “Eating for IBD” fence and ready to take action
  • How I will be by your side every step of the way

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be motivated to get started on your food is medicine IBD healing journey. Or, if you’ve already started using food to help you heal, you’ll be ready to kick that journey into high gear! Now is the time mom friend. Now more excuses. You can do this, and I’ve got your back!

Episode at a Glance:

  • [02:39] An inspirational story for everyone in gut healing mode (it’s full of heroes, a tragedy, and a triumphant ending for everyone with IBD).
  • [06:00] The “banana diet” that led to a gut healing revolution  
  • [07:32] How a chance encounter between Elaine Gottschall and Dr. Sydney Haas, pioneers in the food is medicine movement, led to the SCD being known throughout the world
  • [09:39] The miracle little girl who is at the center of healing with food movement
  • [13:17] Does it matter which gut healing diet you choose?
  • [13:59] Reason #1 why NOW is the time to start the SCD (it’s all at your fingertips)
  • [16:02] Reason #2 why NOW is the time to start the SCD (the one upside to the trauma of this past year)
  • [23:53] Reason #3 why NOW is the time to start the SCD (we go together like “rama-lama-lama…”)
  • [27:48] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Start your gut healing journey with Karyn today

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

A Brief History of Celiac Disease

Breaking the Vicious Cycle: About the Author

Sidney V. Haas

Against the Grain Podcast with Samir Kakodkar

Judy Herod Episode (Jan 18, 2020)

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet is Backed by More Than 124 Years of Research & Testing

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:50] Hey, dear one! Karyn here, your fellow IBD mama. Are you ready for a stellar, move the needle episode? This is a good one. Let’s get to it. Have you been thinking about starting the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, but holding off because you just don’t know if it will work, or you don’t know how to get started, or you don’t know if the time is right?  Trust me when I tell you,  I get it… before I started the SCD I felt all of these emotions and more. I even waited 5 years after hearing about the diet and reading the pinnacle SCD book: Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall. So I know all about putting off starting the SCD.

But here’s the thing about 2021, and it’s just so key, so critical, so important to keep in mind if you’ve been on the SCD fence. It’s something that’s different about this specific year, more than any other year that’s come before it. There’s actually 3 things that are different about 2021 and they are things that have never happened before in the history of the SCD.

3 REASONS WHY…

Today, I’m going to share these 3 reasons with you. But I want to start this episode with a story because there’s a story that drives these 3 reasons home more than anything else I’m sharing with you today. And it’s a juicy, pull up a chair, grab a cup of tea, get cozy, put your feet up, type of story because it’s a moving story with a couple heroes, a tragedy, and a triumphant ending. All the best stories have those elements, don’t they?

[06:00] Our story begins back in 1870, yep we are going way back in time, with the birth of a man that, even though I never knew him, transformed my whole life and I want you to know about him because it’s possible that he’ll change your life too. Dr. Sidney Valentine Haas, one of the heroes of our story, let’s call him hero #1, was born that year. Haas, who grew up to become a pediatrician, was studying celiac disease. Now, this was the 1920’s, and knowledge about celiac disease was in its very primitive stages. Even though thoughts about celiac actually began creeping up in the first century AD, by a Greek physician named (and I just love saying his name) Aretaeus Cappadocia. When we look back at Cappadocia’s teachings and writings in that time period, they show he was looking into a disease where, and here’s a quote: “the stomach is irretentive of the food and it passes through undigested and crude…” “we call such persons coeliacs.”

A LOT HAS CHANGED SINCE CELIAC WAS FIRST DISCOVERED

Well, since the first century, a variety of scientists and doctors had dabbled into this unusual stomach condition, and although it was known to be a food disorder, no one knew exactly how to treat it, until in 1924, when Dr. Haas described his successful treatment of eight children with celiac disease. He said they were “clinically cured” (those are his words) with an eating plan called the banana diet.

Now, even though we know today that staying away from gluten is the crucial component to keep Celiac at bay, this banana diet was inadvertently free of gluten. It was also free of grains, and after the first few early attempts, it wasn’t a diet of just bananas. It was a diet where the patients ate bananas and other fruit and vegetables, but they also stayed away from breads, crackers, potatoes, and all cereals. It was a diet low in carbohydrates, and it was the earliest version of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.

ENTER THE SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET

By the 1951, Dr. Haas had put his findings in a book called Management of Celiac Disease. And through trial and error over the years, Dr. Haas had realized that the positive results he was seeing in Celiac patients was actually more about specific carbohydrates, and not just low carbohydrates. Hence the name he came up with, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.

Although initially there was appreciation of Dr. Haas’s work, soon after, the medical world did what the medical world often does. It dismissed Dr. Haas’s work as quackery in favor of medication, hospitalization, and surgery. That must have been a difficult time for Dr. Haas, knowing he was onto something, but just not able to get the diet the attention it deserved.

HAVING IBD IN THE 1950’S MAY HAVE BEEN LIFE THREATENING

Can you imagine what an impossible time it would have been for you and I back then, not just for those with Celiac, but also for us with Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis? The SCD was definitely not a mainstream option for us either.

Take a pill.

Have surgery.

We have no other options for you.

Malnutrition was the norm.

Possibly death if your condition was left untreated.

The 1950’s was a tough time for someone with IBD.

A HERO WORTH LOOKING UP TO

[09:39] And here’s where our second hero enters our story—Elaine Gotschall. In 1958, Elaine was a young mom with two little girls. One of those girls, Judy, was a very sick little girl. Judy had been diagnosed with a severe case of Ulcerative Colitis. According to the Breaking the Vicious Cycle website, she suffered from chronic intestinal distress and rectal bleeding. She didn’t respond to any of the medical interventions that were offered to her.

After seeing doctor after doctor, and you know that drill, Elaine and her husband Herb were at their wits end. No one could help them. Every doctor told them food couldn’t help. Food had nothing to do with her gastrointestinal illness. Judy continued to be malnourished and weak. The family even went to a doctor who told them Judy’s only options were to remove her colon and collect her waste in a bag for the rest of her life, or wither and possibly die.

THE DOCTOR SHARES APPALLING NEWS

Again, as this is descried in the BTVC website, this news was, of course, shocking and Elaine who was visibly distraught and began to sob. Any of us would, wouldn’t we? I know I’ve cried a river after many doctor’s appointments. The doctor, quite the bedside manner this one, told her “What are you crying about, you gave this to her?”

Can you imagine being told that? Can you put yourself in Elaine’s shoes, as the mom of this little girl in the 1950’s with little to no options? Thankfully, blessedly, our story doesn’t end in tragedy. I promised you a triumphant ending, didn’t I?

As fate would have it, Elaine and Dr. Haas’s path crossed. And Dr. Haas, who was 92 years old at the time, had a whole different approach for Judy. An approach that included food at it’s core. Dr. Haas had a simple question for the Gottschall’s, “What has this child been eating?”

WITHIN 10 DAYS ULCERATIVE COLITIS IMPROVES

Within 10 days of eating Dr. Haas’s Specific Carbohydrate Diet, Judy began to improve. Her neurological problems lessened, and a few months later, there were intestinal improvements and Judy started growing again. After 2 years, she was symptom free.

Amazing, right? Triumphant for sure.

Just like all of us who try the Specific Carbohydrate Diet and find success, we can’t keep this information to ourselves. Elaine knew she had to spread the word and help others. She went back to school where she earned a degree in biology, nutritional biochemistry, and cellular biology. Elaine consulted with other families dealing with these types of medical challenges, she wrote about the SCD and in 1987, she self-published her book, Food and the Gut Reaction. It was the first publication of her book that would later be called Breaking the Vicious Cycle, a book that has sold over 1 million copies. A book that changed my life. A book that continues to change the lives of many all over the world.

Dr. Sydney Haas… Elaine Gottschall… pioneers in the world of food as medicine. Exceptional people who took the road less traveled and walked a dark and solitary path so that we can walk together in the light.

This story is inspiring for all of us struggling to find relief from our gut disorders. It shows the power of perseverance and conviction with what you know to be true, even through a time in history when those around you said you’ll never succeed, you are less than, you are a quack.  

I took us through this pivotal story in our IBD history to remind all of us that sometimes to be successful in where we want to go, we have to know where we’ve been. It’s like the character lovable Mater in the Cars movies are kids watch saying— “I don’t need to look where I’m going, I just need to know where I’ve been.”

LOOK TO THE PAST TO MOVE FORWARD

Look at your history with IBD. Then, look at the amazing heroes who have paved the way for you to fight to live a better life with Crohn’s or colitis. Without Dr. Haas, and without Elaine Gottschall, I wouldn’t be where I am today. You wouldn’t get such a beautifully laid out path to where you want to go either. And even though this is an SCD story, it doesn’t matter if you choose the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, the GAPS diet, the Paleo diet, a gluten free diet, or another gut healing diet to help you on your journey to remission. They all have their roots in the work of these early food is medicine pioneers. They are all so similar in many ways anyway, and there’s never been a better time to let their struggles, challenges, and triumphs pave the way to your success.

And why now, why has there never been a better time in history to begin the SCD? There’s never been a better time and I can prove it to you with three reasons. Three reasons why there’s never been a better time in all of history to start the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Let’s start with reason # 1.

[13:59] #1-100 years ago, like in the case of Dr. Haas’s work, and 50-60 years ago, where Elaine Gottschall began studying how to best use food to heal digestive disorders, even 12 years ago when I began my gut healing journey using the SCD… no one outside of a handful of early adopters had any clue what dry curd cottage cheese, or almond flour or gluten was. There was no gluten free section in the grocery store. The waiter would look at me like I had two heads when I asked, “is this chicken gluten free?” There was only a handful of store-bought SCD legal foods I could buy. My friends had no clue what I was doing. They didn’t get it because diets like Whole 30, Paleo and Keto weren’t being talked about like they are today by the media, celebrities and your next door neighbor. The internet being used as a search engine of endless possibilities was in its infancy. You couldn’t just hop on, do a quick word search for “dairy free SCD breakfast” or “gluten free vegetarian dinners that are soy, lactose, and nut free.”

Today, we can.

That’s why, reason #1 why there’s never been a better time to start the SCD is because there’s never been more information available to us, information right at our fingertips. Information just a couple clicks away. And there’s never been a time where family, friends, workplaces, restaurants, airlines, hotels… are all knowledgeable and open to food sensitivities and special diets.

THE UPSIDE TO SPENDING SO MUCH TIME AT HOME

[16:02] Want to know 1 more reason why there’s never been a better time to start the SCD. It’s reason #2: And that reason is quarantining. OK, let’s get this out of the way right now before you send me your hate mail. Covid sucks, quarantining sucks. What this past year has done to our lives sucks. It’s cry for days unimaginable when you think of all the sickness and death Covid has brought. I know we’ve all been affected by it.

If there’s just one glimmer of hope here, one upside to this world tragedy, it’s that it’s created space for new SCDer’s to practice tweak and refine on their own terms. There’s never been a better time to start SCD than in the middle of quarantining. I can’t tell you how many clients starting new gut healing diets have told me this very thing. They’ll tell me they feel so grateful that they can just concentrate on figuring this new life out. Or they’ll tell me, I don’t know what I’d do if I had to do this while running in 15 directions. Truth be told, I know they’d could do it, but those challenges do make it harder.

STARTING THE SCD ISN’T JUST HARD FOR YOU

Starting a new diet like the SCD is hard mom friend. It’s not the kind of thing you take lightly or go into without a game plan, at least if you want to be successful. I remember for me, in the early stages, going to a friend’s house with my food tote in toe. So many questions about what I was eating, why I was doing it. And the truth was, I was so topsy turvy myself, that I really wasn’t prepared for it. I was getting used to all of this for the first time myself. I didn’t really know or frankly want to explain it to others while I was going through it.

Before starting SCD, I was the Italian foodie to my friends and family. I was the girl throwing lavish dinner parties where pasta and pastries were the stars of the table. I was the girl with the perfect extra gluten recipe for every occasion. My friends and family didn’t get this new me at first. While I was struggling to find my new identity, they were struggling right next to me. They definitely didn’t struggle with me, it was more like next to me in a parallel universe.

I knew they were talking about it with each other too. Not in a mean way, not in a gossipy way, but me starting this diet was a jolt to their system just as much as it was to mine. And being so shaky about it myself, always questioning am I eating the right thing? Is there something in my meal at the restaurant that will make me sick? Will that friend be offended when I show up at her dinner party with my own food? Will I go out with friends to that restaurant where I know there’s nothing I can eat and just awkwardly hang, or will I sneak in my own food? These challenges were tough to navigate at the beginning of my new SCD world.

And speaking of restaurants, hoo, that was a challenge even beyond did they have any food for me to eat. Even at a restaurant I carefully selected by their menu, I’d get flustered and embarrassed when I ordered. Seriously, red in the face embarrassed. The servers and the staff didn’t understand me at all. They thought I was being pushy and high maintenance when I ordered. It made me uncomfortable and them mad. They probably spit in my food. Ha kidding! But seriously, I was a train wreck in the beginning.

LEARNING TO TRAVEL ON WHILE ON THE SCD CAN BE TRICKY

And traveling? Wow, that was a nightmare too in my early days for SCD. Trying to figure out what food to bring, what would keep well in my suitcase, what could I get when I arrived at the local grocery store… Now, I’d say I’m an SCD traveling master because I’ve done it so many times. But back then? Not so much.

I’m sure you can see what I’m getting at here. Because of the pandemic and quarantining, with people staying home more, not traveling so much, not hanging out at restaurants or going to large parties, it gives you time to get comfortable and familiar with your new eating routine before taking it on the road.

Reason #2 that there’s never been a better time to start the SCD is that this pandemic has created the ability and the time for you to experiment with all your new SCD foods, get comfortable with the diet, get comfortable in your new skin, before navigating eating at a friend or family member’s house, throwing a dinner party, eating out a restaurant, or making eating our more about the company and not the food when you’re at a restaurant you can’t eat at, or traveling by car or by plane. Heavy stuff to navigate! Doable, and I know you can do it mama, but why put more pressure on yourself than you have to.

Do yourself a favor, if you’ve been on the fence about the SCD, start now before we all start really getting out, living our lives again. By the time the world opens up, you’ll be an SCD pro. Your friends and family might still need to get used to the new you, but you’ll already be there, strong and confident.

YOU’VE GOT ME BY YOUR SIDE

[23:53] Now, as I mentioned, there’ one last reason why there’s never been a better time to start the SCD. Reason #3- and I say this in the utmost humility and feeling of privilege. Reason #3 is that you’ve got me by your side. Someone who’s been in the SCD trenches before. A mama with Crohn’s who knows what you’re going through. In my 30 + years with IBD and my 10 years helping moms on their own gut healing journey, I’ve seen and heard your stores, your struggles, and I’m here to help whether we work together personally or not.

Helping moms on their IBD healing journey is my calling, my passion, my mission in life. Supporting you through this podcast gives me joy and feds my soul. So, show up each week. Start implementing change in your own life, and you will make progress. If you want to take our conversations further with 1 on 1 coaching, I’m here for that too. Go to karynhaley.com/coaching and get yourself on my IBD Health Coaching waitlist. I’ll be there to support you with bells on.

LET’S RECAP

Let’s recap our 3 reasons real quick before I sign off. 3 Reasons why there’s never been a better time to start the SCD. Reason #1: There’s never been more information about how to start the SCD, what foods to eat, what not to eat, all available to us right at our fingertips. Information is just a couple clicks away thanks to the internet. Reason #2: Right now, you have the ability and the time for you to experiment with all your new SCD foods, get comfortable with the diet, get comfortable in your new skin, before navigating any social situations the SCD may bring. Do it now, before we all start coming out of our hibernation (from my lips to God’s ears). And Reason #3: You’ve got me in your corner. Join me on the podcast each week for tips and strategies to put your IBD in its place, join me on Facebook and YouTube for daily and weekly gut healing inspiration, and if you want to take our relationship to the next level (yes, please count me in), hit me up at karynhaley.com/coaching and let’s kick your healing into high gear together.

That’s a wrap dear one. Sending out gut healing vibes to you today and always.

Until we meet again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

[27:48] One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 22: Juicing vs Smoothies: What’s Better for Gut Healing?

When it comes to beverages that are good for gut healing, smoothies and juicing always comes up. What could be bad about an infusion of fruits and vegetables? Well, it turns out there’s a lot more to making your gut healing beverages healthy than I originally thought.

And I can’t wait to share with you what I found out.  

In this episode, I’m sharing the key health differences between juicing and blending smoothies, the pros and cons of each, and then ultimately, which is better for your gut health.  

We’re talking about:

  • How to use your gut to decide if you should juice or blend?
  • The one ingredient that’s a MUST if you make smoothies (and the one ingredient you think you need, but you don’t)
  • The juicing trend that’s not as healthy as you might think
  • Why fiber is the key to making all your juicing and smoothie decisions

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll know exactly when to juice, when to blend, and how to do both so that they benefit the health of your gut and your entire body (and of course, you can bring all that knowledge to your family’s health too!)

Episode at a Glance:

  • [04:00] Are fresh pressed juices and smoothies hype or are they worth your time for gut healing?
  • [06:05] What’s the difference between juicing and smoothies?
  • [09:46] The best juicer to well worth its price tag
  • [10:50] The best blenders on the market
  • [12:55] The one thing that must be in your smoothie to make it healthy
  • [18:20] The downside of detoxes and cleanses for IBDer’s
  • [24:35] The biggest factor we must keep in mind when deciding between juicing or smoothies
  • [27:55] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Register for the Eating for IBD Training (2/18/21)

Your Juicing and Smoothie Recipe Booklet

The Gut Love Community

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Omega Ultimate Juicer and Nutrition System

Breville Juice Fountain

Novis Vita Juicer

Health Effects of Mixed Fruit and Vegetable Concentrates: A Systemic Review of Clinical Interventions

Are Goitrogens in Foods Harmful?

Vitamix High Speed Blenders

Blendtec Blenders

Ninja Blenders

Episode Transcript:

Hey there, Karyn here, jumping on before the intro to let you know that time’s running out. Today is the last day to register for my brand new training, Eating for IBD: Finding the Right Diet to Heal Your Crohn’s or Colitis in 3 SIMPLE STEPS. It’s all going down LIVE tomorrow. Yes, we’re going live tomorrow February 18th @ 8pm EST to talk about gut healing diets that actually work and how to figure out which diet is the best one for you. Link to register is above the video.

And I’ll give you just a little sneak peek into the training with one of the concepts we’re talking about—there is no one size fits all diet for Crohn’s or colitis—quieting your IBD symptoms is about finding the best IBD diet for you. I’m talking all about how you can find the best diet for your IBD on the training tomorrow night.

Now if you can’t join live, no worries, I’ll be sending a replay to everyone who’s registered. So sign up and you’ll get the replay. Also, if you’re listening to the podcast a few days after Feb 18th, because that’s the cool thing about a podcast, you can listen to it whenever, wherever… no worries, I’ve got you covered too. Shoot me an email at hello@karynhaley.com and I’ll send the replay out to you as well. It should still be available for a few more days after the 18th. I’ve to tell you though mama. I hope I get to see you there and connect with you live! There’s an energy and a connection in live that I just LOVE. Can’t wait.

And on with the show we go–

[Music]

[02:42] INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

Well, hello dear listener and welcome to the show. I bet the chances are almost 100% that you’ve tried either juicing or even more likely, you’ve made a smoothie before. It’s a massive tread in the health food industry today. Restaurants that only sell smoothies, juice bars, and even premade fresh pressed juice options are available at grocery stores. The thing about these so called “health foods” though is that they aren’t always good for those of us with Crohn’s or colitis. Often times, health trends lack real scientific evidence to any health benefit they have whatsoever, let alone gut healing benefits, which is of course what we’re looking for.

[04:00] I was recently asked by a GLC mama (that’s our free and fabulous Gut Love Community of moms) if I do an episode to help clear up the confusion about juicing vs smoothies—which is better for gut health? This led me to ponder the question, are either of these the best option when we’re in gut healing mode? And the answer to that question, I’ve got a not so easy answer for you. And my answer is that it depends on what you put in them, how they’re made, and where you’re at on your healing journey.

Let me explain.

ARE SMOOTHIES AND FRESH JUICES THE SAME THING?

While juicing a fresh juice and blending a smoothie often have some of the same ingredients, they really are not the same thing at all. Today on the podcast, I’m going to break this down for you, once and for all, so that you know when a smoothie is the best option vs when juicing is better for you. And, of course, we’ve got to talk about how to best make them for our gut health too, because if either of these health foods are made incorrectly, you’re not only, not going to help your Crohn’s or colitis, but you could be making it worse.

Now, I’m going to be sharing lots of how-to information today. Actionable insights so you might want to take notes on this one. So, if you have a doc open on your computer or a pen and paper, make sure it’s handy. Whether you do or not, I’ve got both juicing and smoothie recipes I’m sharing a link for in the show notes, so feel free to go karynhaley.com/drinks if you want to jazz up your juice or smoothie life. We’re just going into a lot more detail here than in our recipe booklet so you may want to take some notes you can go back to later.

Also, in the beginning, I’ll be giving you the facts about juicing and smoothies and I’ll try to keep my opinions to myself (not so sure how well I’ll be at that) but I want to do that first so we’re all on the same page when it comes to juicing and blending. Stay tuned until the end so we can compare the pros and cons of each method and so I can give you my final recommendations at the end.

IF THEY’RE NOT THE SAME, WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES?

[06:55] Let’s start out our juice/smoothie conversation right at the beginning by explaining the important differences between these two beverages- Smoothies and juices. You know I just can’t give you half the story and walk away. I have to lay it all out. So, here’s the complete lowdown on juicing and smoothies.

Juicing– is a way to drink your fruits and veggies. Unlike smoothies, it usually only contains fruits and veggies—maybe a little pinch or a dash of a spice after to mix in, but it’s not like smoothies where we love to whip up everything but the kitchen sink in there. Because of this, some people tend to think juicing is much or pure, true to the simplest form of the produce than smoothies.

When you use a juicer, and there’s 2 different types you can buy, the cold press, masticating type and the centrifugal kind. Cold press is slower, quieter, and it literally presses the juice out of the fruit or veg. Centrifugal uses a spinner method.  It’s high-speed juicing, but it’s also louder. Cold press, masticating juicing is usually said to be a better option because it doesn’t have a motor that spins and heats through its process. This allows the juice to be completely raw, with its nutrients intact. The masticating juicer also produces a smoother juice. Either juicing process does strip the food of its skin so up to 90% of the fruit or vegetable’s fiber is removed in the juicing process.

THE RESEARCH BACK STUDIES TELL THE WHOLE STORY

One recent study I found on the benefits of juicing found that fresh juices increase antioxidants in the body, including beta carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and folate. I’ll link to the study in the show notes if you’re a research geek like me. You’ve probably heard juicing and detoxes linked together. Juicing is known for flushing the body’s toxins. Some people do 3-4 day juice cleanses where all they have is juice for those few days to detoxify their body.

WHAT’S THE BEST JUICER ON THE MARKET?

[09:46] In case you don’t have a juicer and want to invest in one after hearing about it today, I’ll also link to a few of the best juicers on the market in the show notes. My favorite is the Omega Ultimate Juicer and Nutrition System. It runs for a little under $300 and it’s the masticating type of juicer. This juicer is pretty fancy as it also makes nut butter, nut milk, and sorbet so it’s multi-functional. I don’t have one myself, but I have a friend who has one and she raves about it. I have about a 10-year-old Breville juicer collecting dust in my basement. It’s an oldie but a goodie and I’ll link to the Breville, another great juicer brand, in the show notes.

[10:40] Now, smoothies… They are made in a blender. Of course, when they’re made with health in mind, fruits and vegetables are at the center of these drinks as well. Usually, a smoothie contains some sort of liquid like water or non-dairy milk for us gut healers, it might have fruit in it, or contain greens and what I like to call health builders (like chia seeds, or hemp powder) and a good fat for energy.

With smoothies, placing something frozen in it is key. This is what makes it smooth and creamy and frothy. Although, I have to say, I’ve had a few clients that think of this froth factor as a downside, so it each her own. But if you want some smooth, creamy, froth in your smoothie, this can be accomplished with either using frozen fruit or veg, or even ice cubes. Smoothies boast a great way to get your fiber in because unlike the juicer, a blender keeps the skin of what you put in and blends it up into a digestible form. Ding ding “digestible” is always music to my ears for us with gut challenges!

DO YOURSELF A FAVOR, SPLURGE ON THE HIGH-SPEED BLENDER

With smoothies, using a high-speed blender is key. You just don’t want to taste the grit, or suck up chunks from food that didn’t blend enough. Plus, with the digestion challenges we have, a creamy, well blended smoothie is a must for digestion and absorption.  You don’t want to see those pieces come out the way they went in. Am I right?

[12:50] Over the years, I’ve used just about every blender on the market. My favorite blenders have always come from three companies: Vitamix, Blendtec and Ninja. I’ll link to these in the show notes. Right now, I have a Vitamix and it never disappoints. When you taste a smoothie from a Vitamix, you’ll never want to go back to one of the less well-made versions.

When I recommend smoothies to clients, I always recommend a combo of about 1 ½ cups of liquid, 1 cup of greens, ½ cup or less of fruit, 1 or 2 Tbsp of quality fat, and 1 to 2 health builders. That will make you 1-2 servings of a smoothie depending on if it’s a snack or part of your meal. For the liquid part of the smoothie, I recommend you use coconut water, or a non-dairy milk like coconut or almond milk. Water is also fine.

THE INGREDIENT TO BEWARE OF IF YOU’VE GOT HORMONE CHALLENGES

Greens like kale, beet greens, swiss chard, bok choy, collards, or spinach work well. Beware of greens though if you have hormonal challenges like hypothyroidism as many greens contain goitrogens which can affect your thyroid negatively. Lightly steaming or blanching your greens and then freezing them before adding them to the smoothie can decrease the goitrogenic effects. I’ll link to more info on hormones and goitrogens in the show notes in case you’re interested in finding out more.

For the fruit you add to your smoothie, I always recommend berries over any other fruit. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries…they’re worth the sugar your putting in your body as they’re high in vitamins and antioxidants for our healing gut. Occasionally, for a treat you might want to try ½ a frozen banana instead of the berries. Just make sure it’s very ripe with brown spots.

Good fat is a must when it comes getting high powered energy and stamina for the day or as an afternoon pick me up smoothie. Coconut oil, nut butters, MCT oil, an avocado, or homemade yogurt are good options. Some people like to add a raw organic egg—not my cup of tea, but go for it if you are very comfortable with the quality of your egg source.

DON’T FORGET THE HEALTH BUILDERS IN YOUR SMOOTHIE

And I love adding in health builders to give your smoothie an extra punch of health factors. Chia seeds, flax seeds (which will be completely masticated in a high-speed blender so no worries about them having trouble passing through the intestine in seed form), hemp powder, raw cacao, acai powder, turmeric, ginger, fresh herbs like parsley– those can all be added as a bonus in your smoothie. 1 to 2 is fine. You don’t need them all to get benefits.

OK, crash course in juicing and smoothies complete. Now, which should you choose, and which is best for you? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each and make a final decision on these beverages.

[18:20] Juicing—remember I mentioned that many people use juicing to detox or cleanse for a few days? Well, this may not be the best option for you when you’ve got IBD. The rapid detox to the digestive system, the low caloric intake, the lack of crucial macronutrients like protein and quality fat we need to keep our weight up and give us energy is just not there during a strict cleanse. I’ve seen these detoxes lead to a flare ups in IBD mamas, so be careful with juice cleanses when you’ve got IBD.

What I think works much better with fresh juices for those with gut disorders is when they’re used in more of a supplemental form. A morning addition to your breakfast routine. An afternoon vitamin and mineral energy pick me up—they are great for that.  

Another thought for your consideration is that juicing takes a ridiculous amount of veggies and fruits just to make one glass of juice. And produce is pricy, especially if you’re buying organic—and I highly recommend you buy organic. What’s the point of juicing for your health, if you’re just putting toxins in your body from the pesticides that are all throughout the fruit and veggies? So, when it comes to juicing, price can be a factor.

DON’T LET THIS PROBLEM KEEP YOU FROM GETTING YOUR SMOOTHIE BENEFIT

One of the reasons why I get down on juicing and especially smoothies is that most people make them with a crazy amount of fruit. They juice and apple and an orange, and a pear, add one stalk of celery and call it healthy. Or they blend 1 cup of frozen cherries, a whole banana in ½ cup of orange juice and call it a smoothie. To be healthy, a smoothie needs more veggie than fruit. The sugar in either of the beverages I just mentioned is just going to cause way too much bacteria to form in our precious guts. That’s a one-way ticket to inflammationville and continued digestive upset my friend.

And smoothie bowls—don’t get me started on these huge candy bars in a bowl. If you’re smoothie is made up of loads of greens, avocado, cucumber, and healthy fats—go for it. But if it’s a fruit ladened sugar machine, it’s not doing you any good mama.

Some are against juicing and smoothies because they say it’s better to just eat the whole fruit or whole vegetable, raw. I’d have to agree with this as well in a perfect world, but for those of us with gut disorders, eating the whole fruit or veggie with skin on it can be too tough for our digestive system. We need a masticated approach to be able to break the structure down and digest it.

Many ladies love to use smoothies, and even juices, as a meal replacement. When we’ve got Crohn’s and colitis, this isn’t the wisest decision. We are starved for nutrients. Keep the fruit and veggie drinks to a snack or add them to a very nutrient dense meal. Then, they will give you the added nutritional benefit you need to feed the health of your gut.

IS THERE ANY FIBER IN THAT JUICE?

Proponents of smoothies over juicing talk about the lack of fiber in the juice. They just don’t see the health factor there, saying that we need the fiber in the smoothie because it helps us process the fruit sugar in the drink. This is certainly an interesting thought to consider. I’ll get back to this thought is just a sec.

And then there’s the juice bars, the smoothie only restaurants, and the store bought freshly pressed juices. What about these? Are they any good? Mostly likely no. Hey, I’ve had them a time or two myself so I’m not saying never. I just think it’s important to think of most of the options at places like this as a treat for the very reason I mentioned earlier. They contain so much sugar from the fruit that you’d almost be better eating a candy bar.

When it comes to the fresh pressed juices you see in health food stores, these might seem like a good option, especially if you choose one that’s an all veggie juice. The problem here is that the more time that goes by after they were juiced, the more nutrients you lose. As soon as we juice or blend, we start to lose the vitamins and minerals in the produce. To make up for having to sit in the store, brands will often add preservatives, and they are usually pasteurized, which degrades the nutrients as well.

Making a smoothie or a juice at home is your best option. Like I said, sometimes these restaurant or store bought are a nice treat, I’m not the food police afterall, but just know that homemade is best when it comes to juicing and smoothies.

[24:35] Perhaps the biggest factor we need to take into account in deciding between juicing and blending a smoothie is the state of your gut. When your IBD is in an active state, we have difficulty digesting and absorbing the nutrients in our food—especially the fiber. We know that juicing removes the fiber, but keeps lots of the nutrient profile of the food. This makes juicing a better option for those in gut repair mode.

With all of these juicing and smoothie observations, what’s the bottom line?

JUST GIVE IT TO ME STRAIGHT, MAMA!

When it comes to mixing juicing and smoothies with a gut disorder, be careful. Be mindful of how much fruit you put in, keep your purchasing of juices and smoothies outside to a minimum, make them at home, and be careful with all the fiber in smoothies. If you can’t tolerate the fiber in the greens you’re adding, it’s not the time for you to drink smoothies. Try juicing instead until your gut challenges improve. You’ll still get an amazing amount of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants in the juice.

Bottom, bottom line?

Choose juicing if you are in the beginning stages of gut healing and you’re still having strong symptoms.

Choose smoothies when you are in remission or maintenance mode. At that point, you’ll be able to tolerate the fiber and it will benefit your whole body.

And if you’re in super-duper, stealth health mode, choose fruit and veggies in their whole state, skin and all.

Questions? Comments? Let me know what you thought of the episode. Email me at hello@karynhaley.com

Well, that’s a wrap on juicing vs smoothies. Thanks for listening and for hanging out with me today. Remember, you can grab your smoothie and juicing recipe booklet by going to karynhaley.com/drinks. You’re going to love these recipes. They are healthy, healing, and delish!

Until we meet again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy healing journey!

Chat soon!

Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

[24:45] One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.T his is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 21: A Gut Friendly Valentine’s Meal for the Whole Family

Do you and your partner celebrate Valentine’s Day? And how has that celebration changed since having kids? If the cute and lovely, heartfelt Valentine’s gifts you used to give to your partner has changed into school Valentine’s cards exchanges and candy hearts for your kids, this episode is for you.  We’re including the whole family in this Valentine’s celebration and we’re doing it all with a gut healing, but oh so tasty, made with love meal, everyone can enjoy!

Imagine a delicious meal for this special holiday that’s super easy to make, gut friendly (even for SCDer’s and GAPSer’s), it’s kid friendly, and everyone will eat it.

That seems like a no brainer, right?

If you’re a mom or one in the making, if you’ve got IBD, if those gut and non-gut challenges are keeping you from having the energy to plan a Valentine’s meal, and if you’re in the kidz zone (you know what I’m talking about), this episode is for you.

We’re talking about:

  • An SCD, GAPS, and Paleo compliant meal that will make your Valentine’s dinner even sweeter
  • Collaboration recipes from SCD rock stars Jennifer from A Life of Happenstance and Erin from No More Crohn’s
  • A way to make both your partner and your kids happy this Valentine’s Day

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll have everything you need for Valentine’s Day 2021, except the ingredients. And just a quick trip to the grocery store will solve that problem and put you in the Valentine’s spirit in no time.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [03:11] Valentine’s Day, holiday of love or commercial cash grab?
  • [06:25] Show your Valentine’s love with food.
  • [09:03] A sneak peek into a Valentine’s themed meal that is great for those in gut healing, those who want an easy meal to make, and those who want a meal that everyone in the family will eat.
  • [11:28] From soup to nuts, what’s on the menu for you this Valentine’s Day.
  • [15:45] Erin from No More Crohn’s for Me shares her SCD legal curry powder recipe.
  • [19:35] Jennifer from A Life of Happenstance shares her recipe for No Bake Strawberry Pie.
  • [21:16] Collagen peptides vs gelatin. What to use and when.
  • [25:15] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

GET THE VALENTINE’S FAMILY MENU: Your Gut Friendly and SCD Legal Holiday Recipes HERE

A Life of Happenstance

No More Crohn’s

Eden Food’s Dried Cherries

Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides

10 Valentine’s Traditions from Around the World

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:50] Hello dear one, welcome to the cheeky podcast. I’ve got a question for you today. Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? I don’t mean does your country celebrate the holiday. I know that from all the incredible mamas in countries around the world who listen to the podcast, and this gives me an opportunity for a quick shout out to my super listeners in Belgium, England, Russia, and Hungry, and of course the good ole US of A– just to name a few of the amazing places I see we hit in the broadcast—wow, isn’t it cool that countries so diverse are all connected around the world with our little podcast of hope for IBDer’s?

Just shows you that no matter what the media tells us, we all have bigger connections that we know. But what I mean with this question is, do you and your partner celebrate it? Do you have Valentine’s traditions? Do anything special for Valentine’s Day?

When I was thinking about this podcast, I did a little research on Valentine’s days around the world and it was so interesting to hear how the holiday is celebrated in different countries. Like according to Huff Post, in Denmark, sweethearts exchange pressed white flowers called snowdrops. And in Wales, a centuries old tradition exists of men carving a wooden spoon into an intricate design and giving it to the woman of their affection. It seems as though the gifts given might be different depending on where you live, but the sentiment remains the same. Valentine’s day is a day to celebrate the ones you love.

In the United States, nothing says Valentine’s Day like candy hearts or chocolates and flowers. Maybe a cute stuffed bear, or if you’re a little saucy, some sexy lingerie. Oooh-la-la!

DO YOU AND YOUR PARTNER CELEBRATE VALENTINE’S DAY?

But the question still remains, with all the traditions, do you and your partner get into this holiday at all? Is it an extra special day for you or do you and your partner trash Valentine’s Day, saying it’s too commercial and too much of a cash grab for big companies who gouge us by tugging on our heartstrings?

I’m really curious about this because it seems like everyone has an opinion about the big V Day, whether it’s positive or negative.

And the even bigger question is, how has Valentine’s Day changed for you and your partner since having kids? Yikes, right?

My hubs and I have been together for 25 years. When we were first dating, I remember us going all in on the holiday for lovers. I’d write him these super corny poems with conversation hearts to fill in the blanks like, I knew early on I wanted you to “kiss me” or what I’m wondering now is will you “be mine”. So silly, but so lovey dovey at the same time. After a few years, and two kids in diapers, the conversation heart poems and handmade gifts turned into store bought gifts, and a few years later, then with 3 kids, our Valentine’s Day slipped off the face of the Earth and in came a kid’s version of Valentine’s Day with Valentine card exchanges at school and gifts for the kids instead of each other.

In recent years, my kids have gotten older and for the most part, the obligatory Valentine’s cards for the school class have disappeared which left me thinking, I wonder if the hubs and I should start remembering our cutesy, coupley Valentine’s Days of year’s past again. The last couple years, we reclaimed Valentine’s Day as a holiday for us as a couple again, which has actually been really nice. I even made a throwback conversation heart poem for my hubby last year. We definitely had a good laugh about that. But with 3 kids still living at home, I felt like I still wanted to celebrate my love for them too. Just because they’re getting older now, doesn’t mean we love our kiddos any less.

SHOWER THE KIDS WITH VALENTINE’S LOVE TOO.

[06:20] Last year, was the best Valentine’s Day for everyone in the family. Hubs and I got our Valentine’s date night, but we still gave a shout out to our love of the kids. And we did it in the best way to reach our growing boys—with food. Because to me, breaking bread together, or breaking grain free bread together as it goes in my house- is the best way that I know to connect, enjoy each other’s company, and show them my love. I’m Italian, what can I say?

A VALENTINE’S MENU FOR EVERYONE IN THE FAMILY.

This Valentine’s Day, I’ve created another from the heart menu made with love for our family to enjoy together. The hubs and I will still have our Valentine’s night out, which, with Covid will actually be more of a night in together. We’ll probably put on a Netflix movie, and I’ll probably fall asleep halfway through the movie, but at least I’ll be snuggled up close to him while I drift off.

If the family meal part of our Valentine’s plan sounds like a good idea, you’re going to love this episode, because I’m about to share with you our complete Valentine’s dinner, now your complete Valentine’s dinner, and one that the whole family will love, from start to finish.

This episode and this Valentine’s meal menu is for you if:

  • You’re a mom (or parent—shout out to the dads that recently wrote to me saying they listen too)
  • You’re dealing with IBD (Crohn’s or colitis), and all the gut and non-gut struggles that keep you from having the energy to plan a meal like this (and man I’ve been there too), plus not only that but you’re looking for a gut friendly menu—I’m talking SCD and GAPS compliant—YAY-ES to that!
  • And this episode is especially for you if you’re in the kid zone—where you’re little kids are either completely taking over your life or you’re like me and you’re moving out of the little kid zone, but you still want to include your kids in the Valentine’s celebration.

So while I’m probably not the best person to plan your Valentine’s date night, remember my affinity for falling asleep on a Netflix and chill night? I can help you plan your V-Day family night with a meal that meets everyone’s needs.

[09:02] This meal is:

  • Easy to make
  • It’s gut friendly, even for SCDer’s and GAPSer’s
  • It includes the kids
  • And everyone will eat it

How often does that happen?

Plus, as a last added bonus, this Valentine’s Family Meal is about food, family, and love, not material gifts that cost money and lack imagination. So it’s especially great if you’re also trying to escape the commercialism of the holiday.

Let me tell you about this gut lovin’, tasty meal that I know your whole family will love.

THE BEST SCD COOKS AND BAKERS COLLABORATE ON A DELICIOUS MEAL YOUR FAMILY WILL LOVE.

First off, it’s a collaboration meal. Last year was good with me planning the entire menu, but this year, I really wanted to reach new heights and I knew that meant getting some recipe help. So, I reached out to my fellow SCD experts and asked them if they would mind sharing some recipe love with us for this special heart and family centered meal– Jennifer from A Life of Happenstance and Erin from No More Crohn’s for Me. Each of these ladies has a fantastic SCD centered website and if you haven’t been there, these ladies rock in the SCD kitchen. I’m hooked their creative and delicious recipes.

I’ve been a huge fan of Erin and her mom Robin’s SCD legal recipes for years. Their I Want to Thrive recipe collection has been a staple in my kitchen for as long as I’ve been on SCD. And I recently came across Jennifer’s website while I was searching for a new SCD dessert. And trust me, it did not disappoint. Yum! Jennifer tackles our V-Day dessert on this family friendly menu and everyone in your fam is going to plotz over it. My family certainly did!

If you want to check out all the interesting recipes from these ladies, I’ll link to their websites in the show notes. Go check them out.

For our Valentine’s Family Meal, here’s what’s on the menu.

[11:28] We’ve got:

  • Cherry Roast Pork
  • Smashed Carrots
  • Curry Roasted Cauliflower
  • Grain Free Dinner Rolls
  • No Bake Strawberry Pie

We’re going to dive into each menu item in more detail, but if you want to get your hands on the full recipe collection with more tips for your cooking, all you have to do is go to karynhaley.com/valentine. I’ll put a link for the recipes in the show notes too.

OUR MAIN EVENT

So, our main event, the star of the meal is the Cherry Roast Pork. The thing that sets this dish apart from other roast pork mains is its combination of sweet cherries with a tangy pork glaze that comes together beautifully. My taste buds actually started to water as I said that! This dish looks like you’ve spent hours in the kitchen, but it literally takes minimal work on your part. I picked this recipe as the main course because of the dark red cherries. It’s perfect for Valentine’s Day. One note to keep in mind, it does have chopped almonds as a topping. Feel free to omit these or even replace them with a different nut if you can’t do almonds. And I highly encourage you to omit the nuts altogether if you’re in the early stages of gut healing. The pork still tastes great without it.

A SIDE DISH THAT DOESN’T DISAPPOINT

Our menu moves on to side dishes with the delectable smashed carrots. This is a great addition because it suites the taste bud needs of kids and parents alike. Kids love carrots for their sweetness, but parents usually want something a little jazzier. I created this SCD legal smashed carrot recipe to fit the parent bill as well your picky eaters’ tastes. The complexity of the simple flavors like fresh orange zest, cinnamon, butter, and honey. Delish, but tasty for kids too.

There’s a topper on this dish as well—dried cherries—and in the recipe booklet, I give you a link for an SCD legal (no sugar) brand which can be hard to find normally, but I’ve got you covered. Again, like with the almonds for the pork, I recommend you skip the dried fruit in early stages of gut healing. Trust me, they’ll still taste great. Sometimes I have cherries on hand, and I use them. Other times, I don’t. It’s good either way.

ANOTHER TASTY SIDE DISH, YES PLEASE!

Your other side dish for this meal is Curry Roasted Cauliflower. Obviously with a name like Curry Roasted Cauliflower, there’s got to be some curry in there. Remember I mentioned that the website No More Crohn’s for Me helped with our Valentine’s menu. Here’s where Erin and Robin’s culinary skills come in.

[15:45] Normally, this wouldn’t be a dish that’s SCD legal because grocery store curry is a no-no. Now, that’s because curry isn’t just one spice, it’s a combination of spices, and often times when spices are combined into one mixture and sold at the grocery store, like curry powder, anti-caking agents like flour and corn starch are added to prevent clumping. Flour and corn products are not allowed on SCD, but thanks to No More Crohn’s, we’ve got you covered with their very own SCD legal curry powder. I’ve used they’re recipe for years. And it definitely tastes better, and fresher than anything you’d buy in the market. I highly recommend it for this dish and any other curry dish you choose to make.

The secret in getting your kids to eat this dish is all in the roasting. Even if you’re kids aren’t fans of raw or steamed cauliflower, this is a veggie worth having them try again. When we roast a vegetable, it brings out all the natural sugars. It gets a robust, sweet flavor that kids tend to love.

The roasting, combined with the exotic flavor brought in by the curry makes this a winner recipe for your Valentine’s family feast. Trust me, if I can get my skeptic children to try and like it, your kids will too.

LET THEM EAT BREAD!

Now, no special holiday meal (no matter the holiday) is ever complete without bread. Come on, you know I’m right. The good news that even though most traditional bread is bad for IBDer’s due to its high carbohydrate content which equals too much sugar and bacteria in the gut, grain free flours like almond and coconut flour make delicious bread that’s much healthier for us to eat. The dinner rolls in your Valentine’s Family Meal menu are rich and full of flavor and will leave everyone at the table happy. I usually make a double batch and freeze rolls to heat up with leftovers.

HAVE YOU EVER TRIED COCONUT FLOUR? NOW’S YOUR CHANCE.

One note about your Valentine’s dinner rolls, they’re made with one of those grain free flours I was mentioning—coconut flour. If you’ve never worked with coconut flour, know that it is a bit different than any of the other flours so be prepared for a different experience. Coconut flour is highly absorbent, but at first, your batter might seem too wet. The absorption process takes a bit to fully take effect so that’s why the recipes has you mix the ingredients and then wait just a few minutes to let the moisture fully absorb before baking. Trust me, it’s not complicated, just different. Once you master coconut flour, you’ll go back to it again and again. If you’ve never used it before, Valentine’s Day may just be the opportunity you’re looking for to try it out.

YOU WON’T HAVE TO DESSERT DESSERT WITH THIS RECIPE.

[19:35] OK, it’s time for the pias de resistance of your Valentine’s Family Meal menu… dessert. And this one, the no bake strawberry pie really is the best part of the meal. Creating recipes to bake is definitely not my forte. A baker who dutifully follows a recipe, absolutely. But a creator, no. Thankfully, ladies like Jennifer from A Life of Happenstance are there to give us some help. SCD or not, everyone in the family will love this dessert. It’s the perfect combination of sweet, and creamy, and rich flavor to add Valentine’s friendly strawberries to your special day. This recipe doesn’t have to be baked. Instead, it uses gelatin to help it set in the frig. Just make sure you pick the right type of gelatin. Not collagen peptides—gelatin. I recommend the beef gelatin from Vital Proteins (it’s the one with the green label), but vegan gelatin is also an option. I’ll link to the Vital Proteins gelatin in the show notes.

So that’s your Family Valentine Menu.

Done.

All you have to do is go out and get the ingredients. So, yes, it’s a complete menu—soup to nuts as they say. But remember that you don’t have to use the complete menu. Swap out, omit, change it up. Make it your own. Use this Valentine’s menu as your jumping off point to create a Valentine’s meal that suits your gut healing needs and your families desires as well.

Your Family Valentine Menu with all the ingredients, the directions for each recipe, tips to make it your own and colorful pictures of each dish (cause what’s a recipe without a picture) is waiting you. All you have to do to get the complete list of dishes and recipes is go to karynhaley.com/valentine

I have to give one last special thank you to our recipe contributors, Jennifer from A Life of Happenstance and Erin at No More Crohn’s for Me for rounding out this Valentine’s menu beautifully. Remember you can find out more about what these ladies are up to by going to their website. It’s all linked in the show notes.

ONE LAST IMPORTANT NOTE…

Just a couple final thoughts before we part. No matter what stage of life you’re in, pre-kids, in the mix with littles, or kids moving up in age, try to find some space with just you and your partner this Valentine’s Day. Whether it’s 5 minutes or 5 hours, don’t let it slip off your radar like it did for me and my hubby during those crazy kid years. We need connection with our partners now more than ever. Who else can go through this crazy, uncertain time with us.

I’m so glad that in recent years the hubs and I made time for it again—overhyped commercial holiday or not, you can make it a special one for you and your partner. No matter how you choose to celebrate the day, I hope the meal I shared with you today will give you an excuse to spend time with your loved ones. That’s what this holiday means to me. Finding another way to show my hubs and my kids that even though I have an illness that can take me away from being there at times, I still care. And any day you can say I love you to your mate, or I choose you in the midst of the kid chaos, in the midst of this IBD chaos, in the midst of life chaos- or sandwich generation chaos—I choose you is a special day.

Happy Valentine’s Day my love. To you, to your family, to your gut health, and to your future! Let this gut friendly meal be the start of a healing journey for you.

Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy healing journey.

Chat soon!

Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

[25:15] One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.T his is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 20: IBD A and A Giveaway Part II

It’s time for an IBD Q and A Giveaway Part II. In our last podcast episode (#19 Part I in this series), we covered your biggest and boldest Crohn’s and colitis questions to help us all navigate the healing minefield we all face when we’re diagnosed with IBD.

Last week’s focus was IBD supplements and medications and today, we’re talking all things gut healing food- one of my favorite topics. You’re going to love these questions. They’re just as insightful as last weeks.

Remember our Wellbee’s Giveaway from last week?

We’re including it again this week, so everyone who submitted a question that gets aired on the episode, gets a free gift card to this outstanding SCD goodies paradise.

When it comes to IBD and food, there’s no better diet to mull over than SCD and GAPS. They’ve both been proven to be helpful at putting IBD into remission. Today, we’re deep diving into both of these diets.

We’re talking about:

  • SCD and GAPS: what’s the difference, is there a difference and is one better than the other for healing IBD?
  • The best options of food to start adding in when it’s time to move beyond SCD
  • Four store-bought Paleo foods that are worth buying for convenience as well as flava

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be crystal clear on the similarities and differences between SCD and GAPS. You’ll also have a whole plethora of gut healthy food ideas at your fingertips for when it’s time to move beyond SCD. Can you imagine being so healthy that you’re ready to move on? It’s all possible my friend. And this episode will give you the tools you need when you’re ready to move beyond.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [05:45] SCD and GAPS: What are they and how do they help Crohn’s and colitis?
  • [06:45] Is SCD and GAPS basically the same eating plans?
  • [08:15] If SCD and GAPS aren’t exactly the same, what’s the difference?
  • [15:05] Which of these diets allows you to eat chocolate.
  • [15:49] So which one should I try?
  • [18:24] The reason why nuts can be a problem for your intestinal healing.
  • [20:07] Is it ever possible to get off the SCD?
  • [26:36] The best foods to add in first when it’s time to go beyond SCD.
  • [28:57] The four best store-bought Paleo food brands to check out when you’re ready.
  • [034:22] Our free and fabulous IBD mom tribe is the Gut Love Community and you can join us there for the 411 on all things IBD related
  • [35:57] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

The Gut Love Community

The Cheeky Podcast for Moms Episode 12

The Cheeky Podcast for Moms Episode 19

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Wellbee’s

Simple Mills

Siete Foods

Primal Kitchen

Equal Exchange Chocolate

Against All Grain

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[0:51] Well hey, hey, hey. Welcome to the podcast. How’s it going for you today? It’s a beautiful winter wonderland where I live. The snow is falling gently, the kids are enjoying a snow day of sledding and snowman making and I’m cozy and warm in front of the fireplace and feeling gratitude for all of it. Ah yes, it’s February in Maryland. I hope you’re having a joyous and healthy day yourself.

PART II OF A TWO-PART EPISODE.

Do you remember our topic last week? Our IBD Q and A Giveaway Part I episode? Last week, we started diving into the insightful, big, and bold questions you asked as part of our IBD Q and A Giveaway with gift cards to Wellbee’s, home of the finest SCD legal foods, and I know that to be true because it says so on their website and also because I’ve enjoyed their products for years.

This week, we’re tackling Part II of our IBD Q and A with two more insightful IBD related questions straight from you dear listener. Now, if you missed Part I, that’s OK because this episode can really stand on its own, but if you do have questions about Crohn’s or colitis, specifically how supplements and medications like biologics can be used to help your illness, you’ll want to go back to episode 19, and check that one out too.

Today will be much like last week, with the last 2 of our IBD questions coming directly from the mamas in our Gut Love Community. Remember, I asked the GLC tribe of moms “What are your most pressing concerns and challenges when it comes to IBD?” I got some great questions back and all of them are receiving personal responses from me, but only 4 questions, questions that got pulled randomly out of my crazy hat are being answered directly on the podcast… bonus points to you if you remember what the crazy hat I mentioned last week looks like. You go girl! It was an old red felt fedora hat from my dancing on the stage days. I’m waving a wand of bonus points for you if you remembered that fun fact from episode 19. Can you tell I’m immersed in Harry Potter again—for the third time, this time with my youngest. Wand talk fills our house. Maybe you can relate? Anyway, I’ll be answering the last 2 questions in the IBD Q and A series today. And if you’re question is one that made it on the podcast, you’ll be getting a surprise gift certificate to Wellbee’s sent your way very soon.

One last reminder, just like last week, all questions are being kept anonymous to protect the privacy of those asking the question. Today’s questions center around two of my favorite topics in the IBD space, heck, let’s be honest, two of my favorite topics in the whole world- the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (or SCD) and the Gut and Psychology Syndrome diet (or GAPS). Let’s get to it.

WHICH GUT HEALING DIET SHOULD I CHOOSE… SCD OR GAPS?

And here’s question #3 from our IBD Q and A.

Our GLC member writes: Karyn, I’m trying to decide between SCD and GAPS? I don’t really see the difference. Is there a difference and which one is better for colitis?

OK, I love this question so freakin’ much. It’s awesome. I’m just so impressed that you know about both and are considering these diets to help your IBD symptoms. These are the diets I work with most in my practice and I love them both.  Let’s start by making sure that everyone knows the basics of what we’re talking about before we dive into the similarities, the differences, and which one is better for you.

[05:45] So, both the SCD (Specific Carbohydrate Diet) and GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) are diets where you eat specific foods and stay away from others. Both diets have been shown to be helpful for those with IBD—so Crohn’s and colitis both. They help to lower the inflammation in your gut and whole body, boost your immune system to help with the autoimmune component of your disease, and bring your intestinal bacteria back into balance.

Win. Win. Win.

What I just gave your abut SCD and GAPS is very “view from above”—very general for what’s what in the world of SCD and GAPS. Let’s now dive in a bit deeper and talk about their similarities, because I can totally see why your confused here. I know others feel the same way too. On the surface, SCD and GAPS seem like exactly the same diet.

SCD AND GAPS HAVE A LOT IN COMMON.

  • They both emphasize an eating plan that’s free of gluten, grains, refined sugar, and most dairy.
  • They both have been shown to work for those with IBD.
  • GAPS is so similar to SCD because it came out of SCD—it’s like a newer (not better, just newer) version of SCD. Think of it like a tried-and-true classic version of a board game vs a more modern version.
  • Both allow only specific types of carbohydrates to be eaten on the diet. These are monosaccharides—single molecule starches because they are easier to digest and absorb. Which means less sugar in your digestive tract and less sugar equals less bacterial imbalance and less inflammation.

LET’S TALK ABOUT WHAT’S DIFFERENT BETWEEN SCD AND GAPS.

[08:15] So what’s different about these two diets?

  • For starters, SCD has more research with case studies for IBD specially. Remember Elaine Gottschall, who popularized the diet with her Breaking the Vicious Cycle book, she used the diet successfully with her daughter who had Ulcerative Colitis.
  • GAPS is actually more touted as a healer for mental health and brain disorder challenges like depression, anxiety, ADHD, Schizophrenia, and Autism. It’s interesting that there’s an autism connection with SCD in Elaine BTVC book too. She mentions SCD helping those with Autism. Possibly Natasha Campbell McBride saw that SCD helped for Autism and then took it further with other mental health and brain disorders. I’ll have to ask her if I ever get the chance…
  • SCD is not as focused on organic, local, sustainable food as GAPS. Elaine spoke only briefly about organic food saying that she wanted this diet to be accessible to all. I believe if Elaine were alive today and she would see how much organic food has become more mainstream, and she would talk about that as well—but that’s just my guess.
  • While some sort of broth is crucial to both diet plans, the GAPS diet asks you to consume meat stock while the SCD has you preparing chicken soup. Both are very similar. Natasha Campbell-McBride, the GAPS creator, talks about how meat stock is best to get you into remission while the chicken stock or bone broth is more for maintenance. I usually recommend the meat stock version to my clients, but I didn’t know about it 12 years ago and I achieved remission using the SCD chicken soup. I think both are so similar and are great for gut healing.
  • GAPS has more defined stages in the beginning, 6 of them, where SCD is more about an intro diet before jumping in. Here’s the thing though, I never do SCD without some sort of stages with my clients. I have lots of mamas who come to me for coaching after jumping into SCD, and it not giving them the best results. When we take a step back and come up with a stages plan for their SCD, it tends to work much better. So yes, the GAPS does have more defined stages, but I never recommend doing SCD without staging it. I just see if working so much better when you add foods in slowly.
  • Also, while the homemade fermented yogurt you may have heard about with GAPS and SCD is a crucial part of IBD healing, the GAPS diet waits to introduce the yogurt until some healing has taken place. Some people are sensitive to dairy (even lactose free dairy) until some intestinal healing has taken place, so with GAPS, you wait. And just a side note in case you’re thinking about yogurt, but not wanting to use dairy, there are non-dairy options for yogurt. Email me if you need a recipe or go to episode #12 I talk all about non-dairy yogurt there. I’ll link to it in the show notes.
  • GAPS has more of an emphasis on probiotic rich, fermented foods than SCD. And it’s not just the yogurt. There’s kefir, sauerkraut and eventually fermented veggies. SCD is all about the yogurt and probiotic supplements.
  • And speaking of kefir, kefir is allowed on GAPS but not on SCD. Also with regard to probiotics, SCD does not allow the bifido strain of probiotics while GAPS does.
  • Perhaps the most interesting difference in my opinion, is that it’s like SCD is more about eliminating the pathogenic bacteria and GAPS more about introducing healing bacteria into the gut. I find that difference really interesting. Subtle, but there nonetheless.
  • Perhaps the saddest of all the foods SCD does not allow is chocolate, even in its healthiest raw cacao form. Various reasons come into play for not allowing in on SCD like the fact that it is linked to cocaine, that it’s addictive, that it may suppress the immune system. While SCD stays away from chocolate later stages of GAPS does allow for high quality dark chocolate. And I do have to say that although 12 years ago when I faithfully followed SCD for 2 years with fanatical adherence, the first thing I added back into my diet was raw cacao and dark chocolate. Addiction be damned. That’s an addiction I’ll own.

See how there’s actually quite a few differences when you look very closely? Subtle differences, but ones that might help you to decide which diet is best for you.

SO WHICH DIET IS BETTER?

[15:49] When it comes to which diet is better and which one I recommend for IBDer’s, you’re going to hate my answer here, but I don’t recommend one over the other. My favorite thing to do with clients is a combo approach where we take the best of each plan. Over the years, I’ve created and tweaked an approach that incorporates both, so personally, I don’t think you have to pick one over the other. I think you can pick the best of both diets and be really successful.

If you want to do that, use both diets to your IBD advantage, your first step is to get a copy of Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall and a copy of Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride. Read them both and see what you like and what you don’t like about about these diets. See how you can combine them into the best gut healing diet for you.

Remember, if you find the idea of all that research overwhelming, I’ve already done a lot of the legwork for you. Know that if you want help with how to best make this work for you, I’m here to help. Reach out and let’s chat about it.

If you’re strictly a purest and you want to pick only one diet—SCD or GAPS—that’s fine too. Remember, they are so similar. My guess is that you will find some level of success with either one. They both have proven results when it comes to IBD, even GAPS.

I do have a bit of advice for you though. No matter which one you choose, keep your emphasis on nutrient dense food– organic veggies, grass fed meat, local food sources, choose pastured or farm raised eggs, use the healthy fats in either diet liberally to help your gut heal, and perhaps most importantly, stay away from too much nut flour. You should not be having an almond flour cookie or muffin or pancake with every meal. It’s just too many nuts and nuts can be inflammatory and keep you from full and lasting healing. I see a lot of problems with moms who do this. It can be reversed, but it’s best to start off on the right foot, right from the beginning.

So go for it, go for it with SCD or GAPS, knowing that tweaking, pivoting, and do it with your own symptoms and lifestyle in mind. This is always the way to go in any diet you choose.

CAN I EVER GO OFF SCD?

[20:07] Question #4 The last question. And this is an SCD specific one.

When it’s time to move on from SCD, what should I try?

Another fabulous question and congrats that you’ve made it this far! Seriously incredible. I know first-hand just how difficult it is to stay on the SCD, but you did it lady and now you’re ready to come off. Awesome!

Over the last several years, I’ve had the pleasure of clients coming back to me a year or two years after we’ve finished our coaching together to say, “Karyn, I’m ready to add in more foods, can I do that?” This is one of my favorite conversations to have. It means the diet has worked for you, you’ve sustained your remission, and you’re ready to see what’s around the bend for your diet and your future. After many conversations with rock star clients who are at this place on their healing journey, I’ve developed a list of go-to foods you’ll want to try when it’s time to branch out with your food choices and dip a toe into new remission sustaining waters.

Now I know most of you who listen to my podcast aren’t here yet. You’re in the trenches, still trying to figure out how to bust that flare, but I still believe this information will be beneficial for you. There’s no one talking about what happens after diets like SCD (or GAPS for that matter) so this is truly valuable information. So whether you’re ready for that step now, or you’re going to tuck this information away until the time is right, know that I have every confidence you will get there. Keep fighting. Keep tweaking and try new things. Keep faith in yourself and you will get there mom friend.

So you’re ready to try adding in some new foods after SCD and you don’t want to risk a flare. First, know that SCD is nutritious and sustainable so you can stay on it as long as you want. Usually, I see moms stay on this diet about 1 year after their last symptom is felt. That could be 1 ½- to let’s say 7 years—a while. But if you’ve been feeling well for quite some time and you’re bored with your eating plan, what should you add in first?

Well, first you might want to go back to some of those foods on SCD that didn’t work for you in the past. Mushrooms, tomatoes, peppers, squash… those are foods I hear about not working often. What didn’t work for you in the early stages of the diet? Feel free to try these foods before moving on completely. They may or may not work for you. And you’ll know they don’t if you experience unexplained diarrhea, bloating, gas, rashes, a headache… there’s way too many symptoms to mention here, but if you have an unexplainable reaction after all this time, you have a really strong food sensitivity, and that food is just not in the cards for you. Remember you can be sensitive to a food AND be in remission. Sometimes there’s just foods that will never work for you, no matter how healthy you are. For me, it’s peppers with skin. Roasted peppers with no skin, no problem. When I eat the skin, all hell breaks loose.

After you’ve tried some of the SCD legal foods that may not have worked in the past, it’s time to try some SCD illegals—healthy foods you just weren’t ready for before.

WHAT’S THE FIRST FOOD YOU SHOULD TRY AFTER SCD?

My top go-to right out of the gate is quinoa—that easiest to digest ancient grain that’s a great source of fiber, protein, as well as antioxidants and minerals like magnesium, iron, and zinc. I love it because it’s a great first grain after being off them for so long. It’s a great first option due to it being easier to digest than other grains.

I do recommend soaking your quinoa first to breakdown the phytic acid and to predigest the starches also for easier digestion. My clients who do this usually fair better in their first grain foray after SCD.

WHAT ELSE CAN YOU TRY?

[26:36] How about sweet potatoes, maybe white potatoes in very limited quantity as they are more starchy than sweet potatoes. My personal post SCD treat was chocolate—raw cacao. But dark chocolate is great too. A company called Equal Exchange makes several great dark chocolate bars. Look for around 70-90% cacao. You are welcome to adopt my motto, a square a day keeps the doctor away, or that’s at least what I like to think.

Maple syrup can be on your list of things to try as well. Raw milk if you have a farmer you trust or organic heavy cream as cream is the lowest in lactose. Some of my clients do well on rice. Basmati is the easiest to digest. Again, I would soak that first to breakdown the fibers.

PRE-PACKAGED STORE-BOUGHT BEYOND SCD FOOD

[28:57] If these new foods go well, you might want to venture out into a few types of pre-made paleo foods. I’d say branch out into pre-made SCD food, but you’ll just never see that at the grocery store. Thankfully though packaged Paleo food is available at the grocery store now and it can open a whole amazing world of gut healthy convenience for you when you’re ready. None of this was available to me 10 years ago, but the world of store-bought grain free and paleo has exploded.

Some of my favorite grain free brands include a bread company called Against the Grain. They’ve got delicious baguettes, bagels, rolls, pizza crust… They’ve recently also added cake and brownie mixes too. There’s another grain free company I love called Primal Kitchen. They have loads of options, but my favorite are their salad dressings and marinades. Siete Foods is also fantastic. Their corn free tortilla chips and cashew made queso dip is to die for.

I’ll leave you with one last store-bought healthy option when you’re ready to branch out. And that’s Simple Mills. Simple Mills is one of my favorites. Crackers and package mixes to make things like focaccia bread and cookies are all just a grocery store purchase away.

While I wouldn’t make any of these pre-made store bought foods the primary foods in my diet, it’s great to know store bought, convenience options are out there for occasional use.

Oh, and one last thought I just had, if you want to go really crazy and branch out from the grain free world, and that’s homemade sourdough bread. It’s a tasty and healthy option. If your gut is ready for this more traditional flour, the bacterial benefits of fermented bread can help keep a bacterial balance in your gut. Again, it’s not something you need to eat every day, but it’s a nice treat every now and again.  With sourdough, it’s best to get a starter from a friend or buy one and make your own. Store bought sourdough usually much more processed and doesn’t have the same benefit as it’s not made in the traditional sourdough starter way.

Hopefully those few suggestions will get you started on the Beyond SCD path and I hope your health continues to shine dear one. Remember, it’s absolutely fine if you’re not there yet. Most of us aren’t. I branch out with a few of these foods on my diet, but many of these, I still don’t tolerate. Grains are my kryptonite and so I’d never be caught dead with sourdough bread. Maybe one day.

OK my darling, that’s a wrap on all four questions in our 2-part series: IBD Q and A Giveaway. Remember, if you’re question was called out during the broadcast, you’re walking away with an awesome gift card to Wellbee’s, your #1 source for all things SCD and gut health goodies. Enjoy and let me know what you get please!

I have to give a huge, special shout out and thanks to all the moms in our fantastic, amazing, super community, the Gut Love Community. This is the place where these IBD questions came pouring in from. The GLC is the place to be if you want to be able to take part in Q and A’s and giveaways like this one. It’s the place to be if you want a safe space for mom-focused, mom-centered conversations about Crohn’s and colitis. It’s the place to be for free and fabulous advice, tips, tricks, recipes, and resources. Join us with the link in the show notes. I can’t wait to meet you there!

Until next week, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.T his is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Ep 19: IBD A and A Giveaway Part I

Today, in Part I of this two-part podcast series, I’m answering your biggest and boldest Crohn’s and colitis questions to help you navigate the healing minefield that we’re forced to wade through while trying to achieve IBD remission.

Not knowing what to do to help your IBD can leave you paralyzed in indecision, unable to move toward health, and it’s time you finally got the answers you need to move forward with confidence.

And, because I love free stuff, I’m doing it all with a giveaway attached.

In this episode, we’re tackling two of the toughest, but juiciest questions when it comes to healing your IBD.

We’re talking about:

  • The top 5 supplement companies you can trust for their quality, efficacy, and transparency of what’s in them
  • The 6 “great starting place” supplements to consider when you are starting supplements to help your Crohn’s or colitis
  • How to decide if biologic medications for IBD are the best approach for you
  • The benefit of seeking out a functional or integrative doctor to help you decide your best “root cause” path to healing

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll be ready to take a giant leap forward toward achieving your IBD healing goals with knowledge, confidence and the power of a mom who’s ready to takes this IBD and put it where it belongs… in remission for good!

Episode at a Glance:

  • [04:15] Our free and fabulous IBD mom tribe is the Gut Love Community and you can join us there for the 411 on all things IBD related
  • [08:18] The reason why you want to skip gut supplements that say “total gut repair”
  • [12:24] The national chain drugstores that recently came under fire for selling supplements without the products mentioned on the label.
  • [13:35] 3 steps to take to make sure you are getting the highest quality in your supplements
  • [15:09] My top 5 supplement companies you can trust for their quality, efficacy, and transparency of what’s in them
  • [17:20] The 6 “great starting place” supplements to consider when you are starting supplements to help your Crohn’s or colitis
  • [28:42] How to decide if biologic medications for IBD are the best approach for you
  • [34:50] The benefit of seeking out a functional or integrative doctor to help you decide your best “root cause” path to healing
  • [39:45] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode:

The Gut Love Community

The Cheeky Podcast Episode 15

Additional Resources from the Episode:

Wellbee’s

Integrative Therapeutics Supplements

Kirkman Labs Supplements

Pure Encapsulations Supplements

Klaire Labs Supplements

Buyer’s Guide to Best High Quality Supplements

Does Vitamin D deficiency increase the severity of Covid-19?

VSL#3 Probiotic-Mixture Induces Remission in Patients with Active Ulcerative Colitis

New York Attorney Genera Targets Supplements at Major Retailers

Amazon Warns Customers: Those Supplements Might Be Fake

Episode Transcript:

[Music]

INTRO: You are listening to The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with Crohn’s and colitis, connect, explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Haley, IBD health coach, integrative wellness enthusiast, and mom to three outstanding kids. After having Crohn’s disease for 30 years and working as a health advocate exclusively with IBD clients for the last 10 years, I know it’s time to bring the types of candid conversations I have with my clients out into the open. It’s our time to go on an IBD healing journey and do it like only a mom can. Let’s do this.

[music]

[00:51] Hey there mom friend, Karyn here. So happy to be with you again today and can I just tell you I can’t wait for our episode today? Anytime I get to connect with you on a personal level, it lights me up and that’s exactly what we’re doing today.

I recently put out an ask to our Gut Love Community- that’s our free and fabulous IBD mom tribe for mom’s dealing with Crohn’s and colitis. So, I asked GLC, “What are your most pressing concerns and challenges when it comes to IBD?” I also attached a special gift to my ask saying that every question answered on the air would get a gift card to my favorite digestive wellness website: Wellbee’s. If you’re eating for gut health, you’ve got to check out Wellbee’s. They’ve got ready made gut healthy goodies, condiments, personal products. I love that website. I’ll link to Wellbee’s in the show notes so you can check them out for yourself.

Anyway, this IBD Q and A brought in so many insightful, big, bold questions that I ended up spreading out into a 2 parter. Like I said, these were big questions and deserved detailed answers to help you on your healing journey. I’d be doing these topics and you a disservice if I gave you a glean of a response and didn’t answer them fully. And I wish I could get to all your Q’s on the air. But please know that if you don’t hear your question answered between today and next week’s episode, you will get an email from me with a personal response. I’ve been working through those diligently so you may already have heard back from me.

And just to give you a little peek behind the scenes at how all this whole IBD Q and A worked, I took all the questions you sent me, put them in a hat (yep, literally a red felt fedora I have back from my days dancing on the stage) and randomly picked the questions to give everyone a fair chance. And the 4 questions I’m answering between today and next week are the random questions I picked from that red hat.

Lastly, I want to mention that to protect everyone’s privacy, I won’t be giving any names associated with the questions, but I will be in touch with your Wellbee’s gift card if your question is answered on the podcast. I have to say, your questions were so good, I’m seriously dishing here. They were so juicy that there’s loads of good takeaways coming your way. If you don’t have a pen and paper or a google doc, you’ll want to get something ready. I know these A’s to your Q’s are going to be helpful for you mama because when we’ve got IBD, these are questions we all have.

IS OUR IBD COMMUNITY FOR YOU?

And if you’re thinking, wait a minute, I didn’t get a question in. How come I didn’t hear about that? Well, that’s because you’re not part of the GLC yet, but you can join us too! It’s the best place to be to get show updates, gut healing recipes, and how-to’s that I only share with the community, plus special bonuses like giveaways, like the Wellbee’s one I doing today, and others from awesome gut healing resources. If all of that sounds good to you, join us in the GLC today. I’ll leave a link for you in the show notes.

So without further ado… I’m can’t wait… let’s get to it!

Question #1

[04:58] What supplements work best for IBD?

Talk about a massive question. Oh so many! There’s a lot that can be done with supplements to help IBD inflammation, gut dysbiosis, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, leaky gut, bloating, gas, heartburn, immune function… and the list goes on and on.  Supplements can be a great addition to your IBD healing plan, but with so many options out there, knowing what to take can feel like a harder task than climbing Mount Everest. Let’s change that for you today. What if you had the 411 on gut healing supplements and had clarity on what is worth your hard-earned cash and what’s not worth a second glance? You’d be interested, right?

Let’s dive in then and clear up all the supplement confusion for you once and for all. First, I’ve gotta say a couple important things about supplements in general. We’ll start with the general and move into the specific.

WHEN IT COMES TO SUPPLEMENTS, GETTING OFF THEM SHOULD BE YOUR GOAL.

OK, so it’s important to know that the end goal with supplements isn’t the supplements doing their job. It’s using the supplements to work through the medical or symptom challenges you’re having and then getting off them when healing has occurred. Because, really, the best place to get our vitamin and mineral needs met is through REAL food sources. Now, this is often a challenge for IBDer’s because we struggle to digest and absorb the nutrients in our food due to increased levels of inflammation, decreased immune function, and gut bacteria imbalances.  So, although ideally getting your nutrient needs met through food is the best option, often times IBDer’s do require extended periods of time (and in all honesty sometimes lifetime) supplement support in certain areas, even when in remission because those supplements are helping that remission last.

Hopefully the way I’m saying that makes sense to you. Getting nutrients and helping your gut to be healthy is best through real whole food sources, but those with Crohn’s and colitis often need more support and supplements can make that happen. Cool so far?

SUPPLEMENTS TAKE THEIR TIME.

Alright, now when talking about supplements, it’s also important to point out that most supplements don’t work like medicine. They usually take longer to see the desired effect. When you decide to try out a supplement to help your IBD symptoms, it’s important to stick it out for a bit to see if it works. I see some mama clients try a supplement once or twice, and when they don’t see any positive results right away, they want to give up. Most supplements need a couple weeks to a few months to really make a determination if their working so give it some time before judging how it’s working

SKIP GUT SUPPLEMENTS THAT CLAIM “TOTAL GUT REPAIR”

And along these same lines, I also see a lot of gut and digestive supplement companies, especially, making multi-prong supplements with multi-prong benefits. On the surface this might seem like a great idea. The whole kill two birds with one stone analogy (I don’t know how that saying came to be—I’m not a fan cause it seems kinda violent and what do you have against the poor birds, but I say it here because it helps you get the idea of what I mean). Let me also give you an example of how this might play out in real supplement world: Let’s say a high-quality supplement company makes a product called gut repair (I’m just making that name up. I’m not calling anyone out specifically) and that gut repair product contains compounds like l-glutamine, N-acetyl glucosamine, slippery elm, aloe vera, probiotics, licorice root, zinc, Boswellia… Even if you aren’t familiar with half of the individual supplements I just listed, you get the idea. It’s a multi-prong approach to gut healing. Lots of supplements in one pill.

It’s like you’re in charge of an army and you’re deciding between sending one warrior into battle vs saying, heck, 100 warriors, I might as well send the whole lot into battle—and of course, remember, that battle is all happening inside your gut. In an ideal scenario, you might say, in war, isn’t 100 warriors better than one? But in an IBD world, this isn’t always the case. More warriors isn’t always better. Our digestive system is so sensitive and so damaged, that this multi-prong gut repair approach is just too intense for our body to handle all at once. We may react so violently that it’s just not worth putting all your gut warriors in one little pill.

So, I say all this to say this about supplements. I usually recommend IBDer’s take supplements, one compound at a time. Just l-glutamine. Just the probiotic. Just zinc. It doesn’t mean you can’t take them all on the same day. It just means you may have a strong negative reaction if you take them all in one capsule.

IT’S OK TO START AT THE BEGINNING, OR MAYBE EVEN EARLIER THAN THAT.

And with IBDer’s having such hypersensitivity, I also recommend building up your supplement dose rather than starting with the full recommended dose on the bottle. So, if you’re starting a probiotic, for example, start with the smallest dose possible, see how you react to that, then bump that up a bit, and continue bumping up the dose every few days until you’re at your desired amount. I remember my client, Ginger, was so sensitive to probiotics, that she started just touching her tongue to the probiotic powder she was taking. It was so worth the effort for her in the end, but she is a perfect example of backing it waaayyy up and moving forward slowly.

You may not be as sensitive as Ginger, but we do have gut sensitive guts. We need to treat our intestines with tender loving care. I know you’ve heard me say it before. My clients hear it all the time. It’s the IBD tortoise who wins the race, not the fast-moving hare. When it comes to supplements, be that one slow moving tortoise warrior. Your results will be much longer lasting in the end.

One last super important note I’ve got to mention with supplements is that we have to go into it knowing that all supplement companies are not created equal.

[12:24] When purchasing supplements, don’t bother with most drugstore varieties. There are problems with them including added fillers and ingredients that will upset your gut and since supplements are not regulated by the FDA, you may not even be getting the dose you think you’re getting.  In New York state, the attorney general recently brought a case against several national retailers GNC, Target, Walgreens and Walmart, saying that four out of five product on their shelves did not contain the herbs that were mentioned in their product. That’s 80% of the supplements on their shelves. Huge numbers! Even Amazon has come under fire for their supplement distribution with complaints of counterfeit or expired products.

While this may get you thinking, there’s no supplement company I can trust, hold up on that thought because there are quality supplement companies out there. Ones you really can trust. When purchasing supplements, be on the lookout for companies that complete random batch testing to ensure you are getting the amount of supplement that is listed on the label. Also, think about purchasing your supplements from pharmaceutical grade companies with 3rd party testing of their product. Look for labels like USP or NSF just to name a couple of the 3rd party authenticators or call the company and ask if they include third party testing in their manufacturing process. And while we can’t get FDA approval on supplements, we can get supplements made with the FDA’s good manufacturing practices. This means that you can trust the safety and efficacy of their product.

I know buying quality supplements can be a minefield. To help you even more with what to look for to ensure you get quality supplements, I’ll link to a great article I found with more information on choosing the highest quality supplements in the show notes, but before we get to the individual supplements that I see working to help quiet your IBD symptoms, I also want to leave you with some of my favorite supplement brands. Brands that meet the standards I just mentioned. Brands I trust and have had good results with, both for myself and for my clients.

5 SUPPLEMENT COMPANIES YOU CAN TRUST

Here’s 5 supplement companies I recommend over and over for their quality, efficacy, and their transparency in what’s in them:

Integrative Therapeutics

Klaire Labs

Thorne Research

Kirkman Labs (especially for SCDer’s or GAPS moms)

Pure Encapsulations

I’ll link to all of these supplement brands in the show notes. There’s lots of goodies in the show notes today so definitely go there to get even more info on all the great topics we’re covering today thanks to your fantastic questions!

THE BEST 6 “FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE” SUPPLEMENTS FOR CROHN’S AND COLITIS

And now, on to the main info: my IBD supplement recommendations. This was a tough one for me. There’s just so many good ones and they all help different symptoms. Remember that there is no one supplement regime for everyone and I’m not saying these supps should be your exact regime. It’s best for you to tailor your supplement plan to your individual needs. And of course, it probably goes without saying that I’m not recommending these supplements to you personally. You’ve got to talk with your provider about that. But when I think about gut healing supplements, there’s 6 I see as a great starting place to help IBD moms, more than any other ones, so those are the ones I’m share with you today.

[17:20] So here’s my 6 “great starting place” supplements for your consideration.

#1 Digestive Enzymes- this supplement, that helps break down fat, protein and carbohydrates to make your food easier to digest and absorb, is great because it works on one of the most common IBD ailments I see—bloating, gas, and diarrhea that often comes after eating because of the inflammation in our digestive tract. And unlike most supplements, if enzymes are going to work, they usually work right away. It’s not unusual for me to hear from a client that enzymes were game changing. If you feel horrible after every meal, and I know firsthand and you know just how debilitating that can be because it keeps you from living your life and being the mom you know you deserve to be, you can imagine just how much digestive enzymes can positively affect your life. One caveat here, beware of digestive enzymes if you have gastritis, but if you get the OK from your provider for these, I love this supplement as a first line supplement to help you feel better fast.

#2 Probiotics- practically everyone with active IBD and even those in remission can use a probiotic. Now, probiotic dosing for active Crohn’s and colitis is usually higher than anything you would buy from a traditional probiotic manufacturer. Specifically, for UC, there has been a study showing a probiotic called VSL3 has been able to induce remission. I’ll link to the study in the show notes. Personally, I don’t think of probiotics as the end all be all remission inducer. I think of them as more of a spoke in your wheel of wellness to be used with other supplements to help you feel better. If you’re a regular to The Cheeky Podcast, you know all about your Wheel of Wellness (it’s basically your healing toolbelt and the more diverse your toolbelt, the better), but the way most studies work for IBD is by answering the question, “Did this bring about remission?” If it took a combo of supplements or if it reduced symptoms, we don’t usually hear about those results, so unfortunately most of the evidence we have about VSL is by patient report. Hopefully more studies will be conducted soon.

Another probiotic with almost the same ingredients and the same high probiotic potency is called Visbiome. Seriously, it’s so similar that it used to be the old VSL—long story. But the bottom line about probiotics for IBD in general though is that this is just a massive topic because there’s many different types of probiotics from the lactobacillus/bifidobacterial strains, to the spore strain, to the saccharomyces boulardii strain… and they all deserve much more time to discuss. We’ll save that for another episode, but for now, know that probiotics are worth looking into for first line of IBD defense. I see many of my clients having success with lacto/bidido multistrain probiotics like VSL and Visbiome, and these specific probiotics have been found to be helpful for IBDer’s like us.

#3 Let’s talk about another first line of defense supplement, Vitamin D. Now vitamin D is the “it” vitamin of moment and usually I like to rebel from the popular “in” supplement, but this vitamin deserves its hype. Vitamin D, which actually works more like a hormone in our body, is heavily linked with inflammation levels. D is a big player vitamin for everything from colds, to covid (there’s been some really interesting research on that), to cancer. It seems that everyone, IBD or not, needs adequate levels of vitamin D, but IBDer’s especially need to make sure their levels are being checked on a regular basis. A recent study regarding the link between vitamin D and IBD shows that sufficient levels of vitamin D have the potential to prevent the onset of IBD and at the same time, control the progression of the disease once you have it. I highly recommend you get your D level checked regularly and if it’s low, talk to your doc about the best supplementation for you. If you’re looking for a vitamin D supplement, you’ll see D in a couple different forms. D3, along with added K2 has the best research behind it. The K2 works along with the D to keep calcium in our bones and that’s very important for us ladies as we age. I’m also partial to liquid supplements as they are easier to absorb for those of us with IBD and there’s lots of liquid options available. Bottom line, get that D level checked with the 25-hydroxy vitamin D test. Ask your doc to add it to your bloodwork, every time you get labs done.

Good stuff. Let’s move on to your first line of defense for IBD supplement #4.

#4 Cod Liver Oil- this a nutrient dense oil with the healthy components of vitamin A, vitamin D, and omega 3s. The benefits of omega 3’s have been well documented for inflammatory diseases, including IBD. Fish oil, which I’m sure you’re familiar with is also a good option, but I prefer CLO because it gives you all the omega 3 benefits with the higher in vitamin D levels as well. And this is definitely a supplement where the quality brand matters. Many brands contain synthetic versions of vit A and D which may not be absorbed. Stick with high quality CLO with brands like Nordic Naturals or Green Pastures and you’ll be fine.

One last quick note about Vit D/K and CLO. These are fat soluble, so they are best absorbed when taken with food.

#6 Last supplement worth mentioning as a first line of defense for IBD is Curcumin. I’m just going to touch on this supplement briefly because I just talked all about its uses and benefits as an IBD healing gem back in episode 15. If you want to know more about curcumin, why it works, how to take it, etc… go check out that episode. I’ll link to it in the show notes. Actually, this episode and episode 15 are great companion episodes if you’re trying to put together your IBD wheel of wellness. 

Just know though that curcumin is the active compound in turmeric—that’s the root that looks a lot like ginger, but is bright orange on the inside and in spice form, it’s the orange powder that’s often used in delicious Indian dishes. In my house, we cook with turmeric all the time. It gives any dish a rich, earthy flavor. I always use it when I’m using coconut milk in a dish. The two go great together.

In supplement form, I’m talking about curcumin at much higher doses than what you cook with. It’s a wonderful anti-inflammatory compound and you can find out more about it in episode 15.

So there you have it, 6 first line of defense supplements worth looking a look for IBDer’s. It might seem like a spent time talking about each one of these, but trust me, there’s lots to know before trying these. And there’s many, many more options available to you, depending on your IBD needs. This is just a starting place. If you’re feeling confused or need further clarification on supplements, reach out. I’m always happy to chat. hello@karynhaley.com is the best way to reach me.

Moving on to question #2 in our IBD Q and A

THE LOWDOWN ON BIOLOGICS FOR IBD.

[28:42] Would you recommend people use biologics?

OK my dear, this question makes me step back a bit. And truth be told, when I read this question, I wanted to put it back in my red fedora. I almost did. As a health coach, I don’t make medical judgements since I’m not a doctor. But I know this question is weighing on you. It’s weighing on most of the mamas who come into my practice. It’s a big one. And since this is such an important question and because it’s so confusing and consuming because when it comes to IBD, biologics seem like the most heard about push coming from gastroenterologists. It’s their gold standard. So, because I know how much this is weighing on your mind, here’s what I want to offer regarding biologics.

DON’T LISTEN TO THE DOCTOR’S WHO TELL YOU THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY TO TREAT YOUR IBD.

First, when it comes to biologics or, any other Crohn’s or colitis medications, remember there is no one path to follow. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that. If there was a one size fits all treatment plan for IBD, everyone would be doing it, wouldn’t we all? Hell, yes! And when I say there is no one size fits all treatment, I mean any treatment you hear about, from the all-knowing woo woo guru to the straight western a medical provider. There’s options when it comes to healing IBD and hopefully you have access to a provider who will enlighten you on those options, not push one option down your throat. It’s interesting because the bad news about Crohn’s and colitis is that there is no cure, but the good news is that even though there is no cure, there are multiple ways to achieve long lasting remission. And of course, for you dear listener, biologics could be the way forward for you.

The other thing I want to say about biologics is that I see way too many IBD mamas saying that once they started biologics, they no longer had to do anything else for their gut health. To this, I say, go proceeded by a no for a no go mom friend! Biologics may help your gut struggles, but that doesn’t mean we have to give up on time-tested natural remedies that can help as well.

Personally, and this is just me, I always prefer natural options first. Healthy food tailored to your needs, supplements that promote good gut health like the ones we just talked about, lifestyle factors that always affect IBD like stress, sleep, and anxiety, plus mindset factors like resiliency, gratitude and a positive outlook as opposed to a fixed mindset that bends at perfectionism, fear, and a focus on the negative.  And when it comes to that mindset piece, if you’re saying, I can’t help my mind Karyn, I’m just a not a positive person. Too many bad things have happened to me. I dare you to spend 30 minutes with me in session. You’ll see for yourself that anyone can learn these mindset skills. It’s just a matter of putting your focus on the emotions that move the needle in a positive direction.

And if you’re able to try these nontoxic options with no side effects methods first (food, lifestyle, and mindset), go for it. Because if they work, you won’t need medications like biologics. But if you try all that and it doesn’t work for either your symptoms or your lifestyle, it’s not a failure to reach for the biologics. Don’t be afraid of medicine mama. Sometimes we need it and it’s not your fault. It’s nothing you did wrong.

Just remember, medicine doesn’t have to be an exclusive approach. Take the best of the medicine and marry that with the best of the natural approach and create an inclusive party to make your gut happy.

Sometimes, medicine is needed just to get us over the hump of a nasty flare up and sometimes we need it more long term. It doesn’t mean the meds give you free will to think that what you eat, what you feel, and how you live your life doesn’t matter. Natural remedies like the ones I just mentioned will always help your medicine to work better. And maybe overtime, you’ll be like me and find you need the medicines less and less and that the more natural approach works for you, more and more. Only your body will know the right path for you. So give your body the time it needs to figure out what works best.

One final thought on biologics and other IBD meds, if you’re thinking about biologics, it’s time to have an honest conversation with your doctor. And I highly recommend, if you have this option where you live, you make that doctor a functional or integrative practitioner that can really help you look at your options from all angles. These types of doctors specialize in the best of the western and the eastern approach to gut heath. They look for the root cause of your IBD symptoms instead of looking for cover ups or in the moment pain relievers. It may take them more time to figure out what makes your IBD tick, but once they do, hallelujah, long term remission in the safest and best way possible for you my friend.

The most important thing I can say about biologics is that all the input you get from your doctor or doctors is just that—input. Not fact, not must do or else. Input. Opinion. Always do your own research, then trust in your decision and go for a deep dive with the best decision for you at the time. No decision is forever. You’ll always be tweaking and that’s OK and to be expected on your IBD journey. After my 30 plus years with IBD, I’m always tweaking and pivoting. It keeps me on my toes. Just remember, you are always in charge of your IBD. You’ve got the strength, the knowledge, and the power, with guidance, to make your own decisions.

Whoo, awesome, insightful, big, bold questions! And we’re going to leave the IBD Q and A there for today. Let’s do a quick recap from what we talked about today.

THE DO IT LIKE A MOM RECAP.

When it comes to supplements:

  • Real food is best for your nutrients, but if that’s not enough supplements can help
  • Be careful with multi-prong supplements, if they bother you, stick with one compound supps
  • Be picky about the quality of your supplements, with drugstore brands, you’re most likely throwing your money down the toilet
  • Give your supplements time to get into your system before judging whether they are working or not, keeping a log of symptoms is a great way to track your progress
  • Start at low doses with supplements, increase the amount based on your reaction to it
  • There’s many supplements for gut health on the market. You don’t need to start with them all. Start by looking into the ones we talked about today, the first line of defense supps and know that there’s others available to you if these don’t help
  • I’m here if you want to continue the supplement conversation hello@karynhaley.com

When it comes to biologics:

  • Definitely a conversation to have with your doctor, they have the knowledge when it comes to these types of medications
  • Biologics and any medication for that matter isn’t a pass for you to do whatever you want with your body. Help your medications work better by also using food, lifestyle and mindset factors to help heal your body
  • Just because you’re taking medications now, doesn’t mean you’ll be taking them forever, listen to your body, have a conversation with your doctor and make the best decision for you at the time, there’s always room for pivots and tweaks
  • You are in charge. Advice and input from trusted professionals is great, but it’s just input. In the end, the decisions about your body and your IBD care are yours. You have the power. Make your power work for you.

And that’s a wrap on this IBD Q and A session. Remember, there’s 2 more A’s to your Q’s coming next week. Remember, if you want to join our mom focused, mom centered free and fabulous IBD community, there’s a link for the Gut Love Community (the GLC) in the show notes. Can’t wait to meet you there! Until next Wednesday, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD healing journey.

Chat soon!

[39:45] Thank you so much for joining me today and for listening to today’s episode. When it comes to IBD, I know there’s a lot of resources out there, and I’m truly honored that you chose the Cheeky Podcast to get your IBD information today. If you found this information helpful, please give us a rating and review. It helps other moms find the podcast and see what we’re doing over here to help IBD moms everywhere. And if you feel called feel a call to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, ’cause that’s what we’re all about over here at the Cheeky Podcast.

One last thing, if you’re still with me, and if you are, you’re definitely my kind of gal. We have to get to know each other better. If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between flares and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my website. It’s karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, she spelled my name with the Y. So it’s K-A-R-Y-N H-A-L-E-Y.com and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble-shooting session with me where we discuss the challenges you’ve been having, we set goals to help you move forward, and we talk about how we can work together to help you get your life back. It’s a power packed 30 minutes. You don’t have to live in IBD status quo. There’s so much that can be done to transform your life so you can thrive in motherhood and thrive with IBD. I’ve seen my clients walk this path and it gives me so much joy to take that journey with them.

My entire coaching practice is run online, so you never have to leave your house and you never have to get out of your jammy or yoga pants for us to work together. You know I’m wearing them to. If you’re ready to take your first amazing step towards healing, I’m ready to chat with you. Schedule your free 30-minute IBD root cause trouble shooting sesh today at karynhaley.com. Click on the work with me tab and I’ll see you soon. It’s important to note that the information in this podcast and in this episode is for general information purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The statements made in the Cheeky Podcast for moms with IBD, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, to cure, or prevent any disease. Before implementing any new treatment protocols, do yourself a favor and consult your physician first.

Thank you so much for listening, for being here, for saving this space for us to spend some time together. Until we chat again, I’m wishing you a cheeky and healthy IBD journey.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This podcast, video, and blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.