Category Archives for Podcast

2 Diets Tailor-Made for Crohn’s & Colitis: SCD and GAPS

So, you’re ready to use food to combat the drain Crohn’s and colitis is putting on your life. Family time suffers, work time suffers. Pretty much every aspect of your life suffers when your IBD is out of control.

The right healing food can be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Food glorious food.

Eating gut healing foods that work for your own personal digestive system has the power to give you a life changing transformation that stays with you for the rest of your life.

No don’t about it, food is a powerful healer.

But with internet information overload (eat this, no eat that), sometimes we become paralyzed in indecision and we fail to move forward with any kind of diet plan. And It’s completely understandable.

We’ve all been there.

Even after I heard about a gut healing diet that had the potential to help md, I still waited 5 years before jumping on the “food is medicine” train.

I was just afraid to start. What if I failed?

Thank God I finally look the leap and choose food as my main IBD hack. I haven’t regretted that decision for one minute.  

And you can take the leap too.

This episode is dedicated to 2 of the best gut healing diets around—the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) and the Gut and Psychology Syndrome diet (GAPS). If you’ve been looking for a path forward, to get out of the distress and challenges of your IBD, and you’re ready to bring food into your healing equation, this is the episode for you.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • What’s the difference between GAPS and SCD and how do you decide which one is best suited for you
  • The #1 reason that gut healing diet you tried failed, and the simple fix that can turn everything around
  • Your best gut healing diet option if you struggle with dairy

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Your Gut Healing Starter Diet Plan

Episode Links:

Breaking the Vicious Cycle Book

A Life of Happenstance

Gut and Psychology Syndrome Book

The GAPS Diet website

Bumblebee Apothecary

Connect With Karyn:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Using Whole Foods To Crush Your Crohn’s & Colitis

Are you ready to use food to help lessen the chaos surrounding your Crohn’s and colitis symptoms?

Eating foods that just don’t work for your body has the power to harm and keep you in sick mode, but food that works with your gastrointestinal system, has the amazing power to heal.

If you’re at your breaking point because your IBD is keeping you from fully being present with your kids, being productive at work, or even working at all, traveling, going out to eat, or spending time with friends…

Maybe you even have constant anxiety about where you’ll find a toilet when you’re out and will you make it in time.

If you can relate, it’s time to bring gut healing food into the equation.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • It’s not just about symptoms– how to pick a gut healing diet that works with your mom life
  • Who a whole food diet is best suited for
  • The whole food diet tweak that makes it a much better option for those of us with sensitive bellies

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Your Gut Healing Starter Diet Plan

Episode Links:

The Whole Foods Diet

The Mediterranean Dish Website

Connect With Karyn:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

The New Year’s Resolution Every Mom with IBD Needs to Make

Happy New Year my friend.

2022… Are you as glad as I am to turn the page to a new year, a new chapter, hell, a whole new book is a better way to look at it.

I might be naive, I might just be way too “glass is half full” for my own good, but I’m going to throw it out there anyway and declare 2022 as your best year yet. Will it be a perfect year? No, there’ll be ups and downs because we are human and we’re on a learning journey, but better and even best? Heck yes!

Today, in timely January fashion, I’ve got the deets on the new year’s resolution that every mom with Crohn’s and colitis needs to make. Yes, that means you. Stick with me and this episode, because I’m about to reveal what you absolutely need to do to make 2022 your year.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The #1 power change you can make that will positively impact your entire health this year (and beyond)
  • My step by step plan that gives you all the tools you need to use food to your IBD advantage
  • How to get 4-weeks of support from me absolutely FREE

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Your Gut Healing Starter Diet Plan

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

You’re Doing Everything Right — How Come Your IBD Isn’t Getting Better?

You’re eating right, you found a diet that works best to help manage your Crohn’s and colitis, you take gut healing supplements and medications when you need them.

You’ve even found the best mindfulness practices to help reduce your stress and anxiety around your illness.

You’re doing everything right.

Why aren’t you feeling better? Today on the podcast, we discuss the three hidden conditions that may be holding you back from full IBD remission.

We’re talking about:

  • What is Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) and why don’t you know you have it?
  • The connection between Candida and anxiety
  • 4 reasons why your IBD might be creating a dysfunctional thyroid
  • The hidden problem with traditional thyroid testing

And so much more!

After the episode, you’ll have the knowledge you need to take to your doctor to get proper testing and treatment for these hidden conditions that might just be keeping you from reaching full IBD remission.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [04:40] What is SIBO and why don’t you know you have it?
  • [07:24] The gold standard in SIBO testing.
  • [13:35] What you should do if you suspect you are suffering with SIBO.
  • [17:12] Who’s at the greatest risk of developing Candida.
  • [19:13] The connection between candida and anxiety.
  • [20:30] The gold standard in Candida testing.
  • [22:48] You have Candida, now what?
  • [25:49] Why you shouldn’t get rid of all sugar if you have Candida.
  • [28:15] 4 reasons why your IBD might be creating a dysfunctional thyroid.
  • [32:45] The hidden problem with traditional thyroid testing.
  • [37:00] Supplements that help your thyroid function better.
  • [42:45] 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

Additional Resources from the Episode:

What is SIBO?

Overcome Candida

The Gluten-Thyroid Connection

Your Functional Medicine Guide to Underlying Thyroid Dysfunctions and How to Heal

Monash University FODMAPS

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] You’re eating right, you found a diet that works best to help manage your Crohn’s and colitis, you take gut healing supplements and medications when you need them, you’ve even found the best mindfulness practices to help reduce your stress and anxiety around your illness. You’re doing everything right. Why aren’t you feeling better?

Unfortunately for IBDers, this experience is all too common. It’s so frustrating when you know you’re doing everything right, but you’re still not getting any better. It’s such a head scratcher because there’s no one to turn to figure out why this might be happening to you.

I’ve literally sat across from dozens of clients who are part crying, and part pulling their hair out because they just don’t know what to do. What do you do when you’ve tried everything, when you’ve done everything right and you still don’t feel better? What is the magic secret that it seems so many people have and why don’t you have it too?

I really get this because not only have I seen it with fellow IBD mom friends and clients, but this has happened to me as well. For me, it happened when everything was going along swimmingly, in remission, everything seemed great one moment. And the next moment, without warning for any reason, it seemed like everything went to Crohn’s hell. Excessive bloating, gas, diarrhea, abdominal pain… and it took me a moment to figure out what was going wrong.

Now listen, there are so many reasons why things might not be going your way with your IBD, even when you are doing everything right. There’s way too many factors to go into or even fathom for this podcast. When this happens to you, I want you to go see your doctor. I want you to turn over every rock and devour all the information you can gather to help yourself.

But I also have this episode of The Cheeky Podcast to also offer to help you on your journey figuring out what might be going wrong.  When I work with clients, there’s often three reasons why they’re doing everything right but they are still not in complete remission.

3 CONDITIONS THAT MIGHT BE KEEPING YOU FROM 100% IBD HEALING

So here we go with my 3 hidden conditions that might be keeping your IBD and your total health down.  These are little known conditions that for the most part, are not being talked about in mainstream medicine. And that’s why you may not know that you have fallen prey to them.  This is one of those action packed, step by step episodes where you’ll want to have a pen and paper handy. So if you don’t have one, quickly pause and come right back with something to write with.

Let’s start with Hidden Condition #1- Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth or SIBO

What is Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)?

[04:40] Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is exactly what it sounds like, an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. Most of our microbial bacteria actually resides in our colon. There are small amounts of bacteria in the small intestine but too much there, is not a good thing. It makes digestion and absorption of our food challenging and it damages the lining of the small intestine.

Why don’t I know I have SIBO?

Two reasons really. #1: traditional gastroenterologists and doctors aren’t taught about small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. It’s very unusual to find a G.I. doc that talks about it as a possibility when you go for an office visit. And #2: we don’t know that we have SIBO because it’s symptoms are so similar to IBD.

What are the symptoms of SIBO?

Let’s talk symptoms so you can see just how similar SIBO and Crohn’s and colitis really are. Common symptoms of SIBO include gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea or constipation, sometimes going back-and-forth between diarrhea and constipation. Of course, if you have IBD, you already have an in balance in your digestive system which puts you at greater risk for getting SIBO in the first place.

SIBO symptoms can also include non-gut challenges like fatigue, joint pain, headaches, moodiness, skin rashes and respiratory symptoms.

There are several conditions besides IBD that have been linked to being at increased risk for SIBO and they include IBS, GERD, leaky gut, Hashimoto’s, Lyme Disease… and the list goes on and on. And even though some of these conditions seem to have nothing to do with your digestive system, this really makes sense because all roads lead back to the gut. Hippocrates and his wisdom, all disease begins in the gut.

Many people with IBD have no idea that they also have SIBO because the symptoms are just so similar. It’s hard to distinguish between the two. So how do you know? How do you know if you have SIBO?

How do we test for SIBO?

It is of the utmost importance that you get a proper SIBO test. I mentioned earlier that many doctors don’t recognize SIBO as a condition at all. Many G.I. doctors who are familiar with this condition are still not doing proper testing. So, you may be left taking a test, getting negative results. When in reality you just didn’t get proper testing.

According to Dr. Allison Siebecker, SIBO expert extraordinaire, the gold standard in SIBO testing is a 3-hour lactulose breath test. Or, and this just came out very recently, a new test that seems to be even better than a traditional 3-hour breath test, and this is the lactulose 3-gas test. The 3-hour lactulose breath test that I mentioned first, tests for two gases present in the gastrointestinal tract when SIBO is high and those are hydrogen and methane levels. These levels are tested after drinking lactulose, which is a synthetic sugar, sometimes used to treat constipation, but in this test, your body will react to it by increasing these gas levels if you have SIBO. This new test that came out recently looks even better as it looks at hydrogen, methane, as well as hydrogen sulfide in the gastrointestinal tract. This test gives even more information to help with a proper SIBO diagnosis.

Depending on the results of your SIBO test, and which gases are present, this gives your doctor a good indication of which SIBO treatment protocol will work best for you. Methane dominate SIBO has a different protocol than hydrogen dominant.

A SIBO Case Study

[09:15] Let me make this really tangible for you with this case of my client Ginger. She was doing everything right.  Ginger had Crohn’s and had started the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, she was on a strong gut healing supplement regime, she was still on 6MP (a medication to help her IBD). Ginger practiced yoga, she walked in nature daily. She had a strong support group of friends to lean on, she was active in her church community… Ginger was doing everything right, but Ginger was still having gut problems. She was feeling gassy and bloated after her meals. She couldn’t find consistency in her poops. She’d have diarrhea for a few days and then constipation for a few, back and forth the cycle went. Ginger was feeling very discouraged when she came to see me. If the SCD and everything she was doing wasn’t working, what could she do? Her doctor was pushing biologics. Should she give up?

In coaching Ginger through her next steps, we talked about some reasons why even though on paper, it looks like she’s doing everything right, there still might be some deeper lingering issues going on. Ones that aren’t often tested for. Of course, SIBO was one of the things we considered. I encouraged Ginger to talk to her doctor about getting proper SIBO testing. Ginger ended up with seriously off the chart hydrogen gas levels from her breath test.

And with this powerful information we realized that there were several foods on Ginger’s SCD diet that were not working for her. Super healthy foods like avocados, ripe bananas, apples, onions, and garlic that are SCD legal, but they just weren’t working for Ginger in this moment due to her SIBO challenges. These are just a few of the food changes I helped Ginger make. When Ginger tweaked her diet, and moved a diet called the SIBO Specific Diet, similar to SCD, but with modifications for those with SIBO, everything turned around for her.

There were other herbals and supplements that Ginger’s doctor added too. But it was game changing for Ginger. Back when she first came to see me, she was ready to throw in the towel. She was down on herself, frustrated, and angry because she was doing everything right. See how just a small tweak can make all the difference in your world?

SIBO. One of those hidden conditions that might be holding you back from those last 40 yards of healing.

What can you do if you suspect SIBO might be holding you back?

[13:35] Start by going to Dr. Siebecker’s website. There, you’ll get up to date, researched back information on SIBO. If you think SIBO might be a culprit for you and you want to know more about it, SIBO symptoms, testing, treatment, etc… that’s the place to start.

Next, talk to the doctor you currently have an ask them to order a SIBO test for you. If your doctor is not open or recommends just a 2-hour test or doesn’t know what you’re talking about, find a nutritionist or functional medicine provider who knows about SIBO and proper testing. I’ll leave a link in the show notes for a functional medicine provider database to find a doctor around the globe. And if all else fails, there are a couple direct to consumer companies you can order a test kit from. One is Direct Labs. I’ve seen people order and test successfully with this company. Reading the test is in an important step and one that all practitioners seem to have their own way for interpreting the results, so it really is your best option to find a provider that can help you with this.

OK, so that’s how come your IBD’s not getting better with hidden condition #1. Let’s talk about hidden condition #2. And that’s Candida. Candida is another digestive ailment that can plague those with IBD, but it’s not talked about in traditional medical circles. Your doctor is not testing for it, and it may be hindering your recovery, even if you’re doing everything right.

What is Candida?

[16:01] Candida is a condition where there’s too much yeast in your digestive tract. This is different from SIBO where it’s a case of too much bacteria in the small intestine. Symptom differences might be subtle in these two conditions, but treatment options are different so it’s important to distinguish between the two before your doctor decides what to do about it.

Candida is short for candida albicans fungus. It’s the most common yeast found in the digestive tract. The yeast can grow out of control, especially when there isn’t enough good bacteria in the G.I. tract. The yeast grows and creates dysbiosis (or an imbalance) in the intestine.  

Many people can be at risk for Candida. People who overuse of antibiotics, people with diabetes, people with autoimmune conditions (especially gastrointestinal like Crohn’s or colitis), people who are on a high sugar or high carbohydrate diet, and people with chronic high stress.

Any of this sounding like you? Candida is much more common than we realize. And it may be the underlying condition that’s keeping you from IBD remission even though you’re doing everything right.

What are the symptoms of Candida?

There are several signs that you may have candida, or an overgrowth of yeast, in your digestive system. I’ll tell you about the ones that I see most often for those with Crohn’s and colitis: Oral thrush or a white spotted coating on your tongue, those with recurrent yeast infections might have Candida, people who experience strong sugar cravings, brain fog, digestive challenges like bloating, diarrhea or constipation, those with fungal infections on their nails or their toenails might have Candida, as well as people who have excessive anxiety or panic attacks. Of course, just because you have anxiety doesn’t mean you have Candida. It’s when we put the whole picture together that the anxiety may be a part of the puzzle.

Why don’t I know I have Candida?

And of course, you don’t know you have it because of the same reasons you don’t know you have a SIBO. They are just way too similar to our Crohn’s and colitis symptoms. Doctors are just not looking for it And if we are following a path of proper eating, proper supplementation and taking our medication’s, and following mindfulness practices that work to reduce our stress and help with the demands on our life and we’re still not getting any better, it can leave us feeling very defeated and uncertain about our future. This is why I’m so passionate about making sure you know about these conditions. Knowledge is key here.

How do we test for Candida?

Practitioners who test for candida will often start with symptoms. When a combination of symptoms like I’ve mentioned comes up to a knowledgeable Candida practitioner, they might decide to dive deeper with testing. The gold standard of candida testing is a 2 to 3 day stool test that looks at the DNA of the pathogens in your poop.

And although I know it’s controversial and this is clearly anecdotal and doesn’t have scientific evidence behind it, I’ve seen people start with a simple at home spit test. The spit test involves spitting into a cup of water first thing in the morning. Often times, people start here because they don’t have a provider that they can go to who knows about candida. So, although I don’t have the research to back up the validity of the spit test, I have seen clients try this first with the spit test coming up positive and then later have stool testing that also comes up positive for Candida. It’s about putting all of the pieces together when it comes to Candida. Looking at your symptoms, getting a stool test if possible, and talking to a doctor who is knowledgeable about the condition is key.

What can you do if you suspect Candida is holding you back?

The best place to start is always by talking to your doctor. You never know unless you bring it up whether they’re willing to talk about Candida and these other conditions we’re talking about today. If you don’t find satisfaction there, remember that there are nutritionists and functional medicine providers who do know about Candida. Don’t stop your search just because the first place you go doesn’t give you satisfaction. Continue searching for someone who can help you. When you do get proper testing for Candida, you may also want to get tested for SIBO at the same time since both of these conditions present so similarly.

Now I know I have Candida. What do I do?

Every provider’s approach to treating Candida is different. But I can give you some general guidelines and what I see most practitioners doing. There are several supplements that can be helpful to get rid of the extra yeast. Antifungals like oil of oregano, caprylic acid, and allicin (from garlic). There are combination antifungal supplements that might be a part of your healing regime. Some people with Crohn’s and colitis tend to be sensitive to multi-strain antifungals so be careful there. Probiotics are also used for Candida after some healing has taken place, but none of these supplements are helpful unless they are combined with diet change. If you’re in the category of doing everything right for your IBD, you’ve probably already changed your diet, but your diet may need some tweaking to make sure it’s tailored to getting rid of your Candida. The low FODMAP diet is really good for this condition. I’ll link to my favorite low FODMAP website in the show notes.

Generally speaking though, a diet that’s low in sugar, low in carbohydrates and that doesn’t include gluten or dairy is preferred when Candida is present. And bone broth or as you know if you listen to this podcast, meat stock is my preference, can be really helpful. As well as including high-quality fats in your diet, especially coconut oil which has that caprylic acid that I mentioned earlier as a supplement, because it helps with Candida overgrowth. Other oils that are good fats and also helpful with candida are extra-virgin olive oil, walnut oil, and avocado oil. Drinking herbal tea like ginger, peppermint and pau d’ arco tea are also helpful as well as drinking black tea because the tannins in the tea help control the Candida overgrowth.

[25:49] When it comes to candida and diet, I just want to mention one last thing about sugar. We want to limit sugar, but we don’t want to get rid of it completely because getting rid of sugar completely can exacerbate Candida. It’s important to focus on small amounts of natural sugars when Candida is present like honey or maple syrup.

Ok, that’s Candida, hidden condition #2 and hopefully some information to get the wheels turning for you to think about and get you moving down the right path if you are doing everything right, and still not feeling better.

Let’s move on and talk about our last hidden condition, condition #3 and that’s thyroid issues. Challenges with your thyroid often times get misdiagnosed, and definitely underdiagnosed. We may be moving along on our IBD healing journey and not feeling as good as we know we should. Thyroid challenges could be at the heart of keeping you from where you deserve to be with your health. Let’s dive into this problem a little deeper.

What are thyroid issues?

Let’s start by talking about what your thyroid is and what can go wrong with it. Your thyroid is a gland, it’s butterfly shaped, and it’s located at the base of your throat. It produces several hormones that have an impact on your total health. Your thyroid gland regulates your body temperature, slows or speeds up your heartbeat, and most importantly for us with IBD, it controls the rate that we digest our food. Unfortunately, this gland malfunctions and sometimes causes thyroid challenges like hypothyroidism (which is low thyroid hormone function or Hashimoto’s disease (where too much thyroid hormone is produced).

Why our thyroid function matter to our IBD?

[28:15] Four reasons really. Let’s talking about reason #1. I already mentioned this when talking about the functions of our thyroid gland, your thyroid hormones control your digestion. Of course, this gives it an immediate and forever connection with our Crohn’s and colitis as proper digestion is the key to helping our disease. Reason #2- Poor thyroid function affects our ability to absorb the nutrients in our food. Ding ding ding, another connection with our Crohn’s and colitis. Reason #3- a poor functioning thyroid also leads to a condition known as a leaky gut, literally the lining of your gut opening small holes where undigested food heads into the bloodstream.

And reason #4- a reason that typically hits very close to home for those of us with IBD and why we might miss the thyroid issue has to do with gluten intolerance that many of us with IBD face. The molecular structure of gliadin, and that’s the protein found in gluten, is almost identical to the molecular structure of the thyroid gland so when gliadin, that gluten protein, moves into the bloodstream because we’re sensitive to it and it causes that leaky gut I was talking about, our immune system says whoa, what is going on here? This is a foreign invader that shouldn’t be here. Our immune system, which is programmed to remove foreign invaders moves to strike down the gliadin. Because the gliadin and thyroid tissue are so similar, the immune system attacks the thyroid too.

Now we have a problem. We have a problem with our thyroid and all because we are sensitive to gluten. Does this make sense? I know it’s a little bit of a convoluted process, but the bottom line is that reason #4 why people with IBD might be impacted with unrecognized thyroid issues is because of our likely sensitivity to gluten.

And because gluten, when we eat it, can last up to six months in our body, and during all this time it can wreak a lot of havoc on our thyroid, it’s yet another reason to not eat gluten if we have IBD.

What are the symptoms of thyroid problems?

[31:45] And what are the symptoms here? What are we looking for to know if we have an undiagnosed thyroid challenge. Well, there’s lots of symptoms that could be an indication of a thyroid condition. Let me tell you about a few of the ones that I see most commonly. When it comes to thyroid challenges, I see things like lack of energy, trouble losing weight, hair loss, low sex drive, a number of gut challenges that we may mistake for our IBD because remember the thyroid controls our digestion. I also see mental health challenges and neurological challenges like depression and brain fog. The symptoms of a thyroid disorder really run the gamut which is why it’s one of those hidden conditions that we don’t know we have. And when it’s left unchecked, it can really cause difficulties for us down the line.

What do I do if I think my thyroid might be the issue?

So, what are you going to do if these symptoms resonate with you? What are you going to do if you think you have thyroid issues? Well, the first thing you’re going to do is get proper testing. And this is a tough one. Because you go to your doctor and many doctors test your thyroid. It’s a very common test during your annual exam at the gynecologist. But unfortunately, many doctors are only testing one thyroid level, your TSH. And if they find that your TSH is normal, they declare your thyroid function fine. We have to get better thyroid testing. We have to dig deeper when we suspect a thyroid challenge. We have to go to our doctor’s appointments armed and dangerous.

When it comes to proper thyroid testing, functional medicine doctors recommend these tests. I want you to write these down so that you can go to your doctor’s appointment ready to request these specific tests. Go ahead and pause the podcast if you need to get a pen and paper. If you’re driving just remind yourself where we’re at in the podcast so you can go back later. Proper thyroid testing should include a TSH, T4, T3, free T4, free T3, reverse T3, and thyroid antibodies. These are just the names of the tests but if you want to know more and exactly what these are looking for, I want you to check out the thyroid link in the show notes. There’s a great article by Dr. Will Cole that I’m going to link to. You can find out more about thyroid function as well as proper thyroid testing there.

This is crucial ladies. We all need to be getting proper thyroid testing. I know for me, I go to my yearly physical and gynecology screening with a piece of paper that has these tests on it. I want to make sure that I am getting my thyroid properly tested at least yearly. The earlier you detect a thyroid problem, the sooner you can begin taking measures to treat it. Please ladies, if you only listen to one thing from this episode please make sure you do this. Get proper thyroid testing. It’s done with a simple blood test. This is something that every doctor can do. Sometimes they just need a little direction from you.

How are thyroid issues treated?

If you go through this testing and you find out that you do have a thyroid challenge, there’s a lot that can be done. Talk to your doctor about eating right for your thyroid. Guess what? Eating for your gut and eating for your thyroid are very similar. You’ll strengthen both at the same time.

There’s a medication that can help with your thyroid as well, both synthetic and natural thyroid replacement hormones. There’s also supplements that can strengthen your thyroid hormones like zinc and magnesium, B vitamins and vitamin D.

Make a plan with your doctor that’s tailored to your needs. Make sure that they know you have Crohn’s or colitis because that will need to be taken into account when deciding on the best treatment plan for you. Everyone’s thyroid needs are different depending on the severity of their challenge. Make a plan together and make sure it includes all facets of help for you. Definitely diet should be in there as well. There’s a lot you can do to help your thyroid with diet alone.

LET’S RECAP THOSE 3 HIDDEN CONDITIONS ONE MORE TIME.

OK my dear, those are the three hidden conditions that may be impacting your ability to feel completely well when you know you’re doing everything right to help heal your IBD. Let’s go ahead and recap the 3 hidden conditions one more time. Hidden condition #1 was small intestinal bacterial overgrowth – SIBO for short. SIBO is an overgrowth of bacteria in your small intestine, and it often mimics your IBD symptoms and makes it difficult for you to know you have this condition. Proper testing is a must. Follow the steps outlined in the episode and you will be on track for SIBO busting success.

Hidden pitfall #2- Hidden condition #2 was Candida. Candida is another condition where the symptoms mimic your Crohn’s or colitis. This makes it really difficult to know if you have it and may be the hidden problem you didn’t know you have. It might be the difference between 80% remission and full remission from your IBD challenges. Again, like SIBO, you want to see a very qualified medical provider to help diagnose and help you with treatment of this condition. Know that it is treatable and that you can get over it. You don’t have to suffer with Candida your whole life.

The last condition we talked about was hidden condition #3- thyroid challenges. Thyroid challenges are notorious for laying low and getting undiagnosed, especially for those of us with Crohn’s or colitis. Thyroid conditions have a very strong gluten connection which makes it even more important for us to avoid gluten when we have IBD. The sooner your thyroid condition is diagnosed and treated, and that’s with a multipronged approach that includes food, the better your overall health will be.

Remember the thyroid controls many functions in your body including your digestion, so we all want the healthiest thyroid possible. Research the testing I mentioned in this episode, don’t be afraid to take this information directly to your doctor to ensure that you get a full range of thyroid testing. Thyroid health can be complicated, but when we put all the pieces together with proper testing, we get a really good picture of what’s going on with our thyroid.

DO IT LIKE A MOM.

Bottom line here, when it comes to issues that might be holding you back from feeling as good as you can with IBD, I want you to do it like a mom. I want you to know just how fierce and strong you are. I want you to know that you are in charge of your medical care. You are in charge of your total health. Don’t let the challenges we talked about today, the ones that aren’t talked about in mainstream medicine stop you from feeling 100% better. You deserve 100% health. You deserve to be there, 100%, first and foremost for you, for your partner, and for your kids.  

Keep striving for health. Keep striving to feel better. I know that I am with you every step of the way. Together, we are stronger. Together, we’ve got this. If you have any questions about this episode or about IBD in general, please get in touch. I’m always available to chat. Reach out at karynhaley.com Let’s bust your IBD together.

Until we meet again, 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.

[42:45] 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.
This podcast, video, and blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Honoring Your Grief During the Holidays

As this Christmas approaches, you might be thinking more and more about your loved ones who are no longer with you.

I’ve been thinking about my mom who passed away earlier this year trying to come up with ways I can keep her memory alive during the holidays.

If you’re trudging through your own grief, you might be feeling this way too. Trying to find special ways to honor your loved one with the grace and thoughtfulness that they deserve.

My goal is to do that without bringing up so much pain that it becomes counterproductive or induces so much stress that you end up in a Crohn’s or colitis flare up.

Join me, dear one, on this very special episode of The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD as we discover 7 ways to honor your loved one this Christmas. And as an added bonus, see below to discover my compilation of 23 holiday survival strategies to help you with your grief (no matter where you’re at on the journey).

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The power of planning when it comes to enduring holiday grief
  • What Hospice teaches us about the grieving process
  • The meaningful way to use your loved one’s Christmas stocking as a tool to honor their memory

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My IBD Mom 2021 Holiday Gift Guide

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

Episode Resources

How to Cope With Grief During the Holidays

5 Tips to Cope with Grief During the Holidays

Coping With Grief During the Holidays

64 Tips For Coping With Grief During the Holidays

23 Holiday Survival Strategies to

Help With Your Grief

(no matter where you’re at on the journey)

#1 Make friends with boundaries. Do what you feel up to and say “no” to the rest.

#2 Feel all the feels of grief. Keep the door open to whatever comes your way. No judgement.

#3 Plan ahead for moments that might be triggering.

#4 Honor the traditions you used to have with your loved one. They will bring you solace.

#5 Create new traditions that honor your loved one. They will bring you new memories.

#6 Know your coping skill strengths and be prepared to use them. Meditation, deep breathing, long walks, affirmations… figure out what works for you.

#7 Help others. It takes the focus off your grief and brings purpose and gratitude to your life.

#8 Ask for help. It’s OK to ask for help with chores, picking up the kids, or anything else that’s on your plate. Let others in. You don’t have to do it alone.

#9 Think about the needs of your kids. How is this grief impacting them? In what ways would they like to honor your loved one?

#10 Keep plans flexible. You may not feel up to a gathering you already planned but sometimes, you may feel up to an outing you thought you wouldn’t be ready for. Be open to possibilities.

#11 Prioritize self-care. How can you honor yourself? Bubble baths, curling up with a great book, binge watching a new show, an outing, a girl’s night… what feeds your soul?

#12 Get counseling. Seeing a therapist isn’t a weakness, it’s a strength. Find a good fit for you, even if that means checking a few out first.

#13 Talk about your grief with others who are experiencing a loss. Other family members, maybe a support group, good friends. Talk about your grief. Don’t bottle in your emotions.

#14 Surround yourself with people who make you feel safe and comforted.

#15 Set realistic expectations. Wherever you are at in your grief, that is where you are supposed to be. Don’t judge yourself harshly. Be kind.

#16 Don’t cancel the holidays. You deserve the tradition, just like everyone else.

#17 Make an acknowledgement that this year will be different.

#18 If you don’t feel up to sending holiday cards, let it go.

#19 Crying is good for the soul.

#20 Ignore anyone who makes you feel bad about your grief.

#21 Think about what you’re eating. Is it helping or is it hurting?

#22 Keep lists. It’s harder to remember all that needs to get done during the holidays when you’re grieving.

#23 It’s OK to laugh and even enjoy yourself during the holidays.

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.

How to Use Herbal Tea in Your Crohn’s & Colitis Healing Plan

What’s in your wheel of wellness?

That invisible wheel we all have to help us cultivate remedies and solutions that help our Crohn’s or colitis from a holistic perspective—mind, body, and soul.

Your wheel of wellness holds all the spokes (just like a bike wheel) that ensure we are not just taking control of our symptoms, but we’re also grabbing those challenges by the root cause, to make real, lasting, positive change happen.

Your wheel of wellness might include diets like the SCD or GAPS, or IBD-AID. It might include ways to help you navigate your stress and make sure you get enough sleep and downtime. Your wheel of wellness might include medication, meditation, yoga, walking in nature, supplements, therapy, clinical hypnosis or even some more cutting-edge treatments like Fecal Microbiota Transplant (FMT), stem cell therapy, or rectal ozone treatments.

Thank God there are so many healing options available to us.

My wheel of wellness is a living, breathing, organism that changes as my needs change. Much of my wheel transforms as I move through different states of healing, but there’s a few spokes that just never change. Ones that are so rock solid for me that they don’t need a tweak.

Herbal tea is one of those solid spokes I will never leave behind. That’s just the kind of powerhouse it is.

Could herbal tea be a constant spoke for you as well?

Maybe you’re not sure.

If you’ve ever wondered how herbal tea can help you find symptom relief from gut challenges like bloating, gas, nausea, heartburn, and belly pain this is the episode for you.

We’re diving into the world of herbal tea and as you’ll soon find out, gut remedies are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the power of herbal tea.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • Three herbal tea blends that will help you with digestion, insomnia, anxiety, and stress
  • My gut healing herbal tea recipe for a holiday classic “Peppermint Bark”
  • How your kids can benefit from herbal tea just as much as you

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Herbal Tea 101: Your Starter Guide to the World of Tea for Wellness

My IBD Mom 2021 Holiday Gift Guide

Numi Tea

Traditional Medicinals

Mountain Rose Herbs

Starwest Botanicals

Snap Ball Metal Tea Strainer

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Eating Beyond Your 4 Walls Part IV: Gut Happy, Healthy Travel with Crohn’s and Colitis

Whether you’re traveling by plane or car, train or you’re taking a cruise, you deserve to enjoy your vacation just as much as everyone else in your family. It’s tough though because everything we do on a vacation tends to revolve around eating out. And that can spell disaster for us Crohn’s and colitis gals.

Unfamiliar food, food sensitivities, and stress about all of it can lead to a vacation that’s awfully familiar to your life when a flare up hits—lots of time in the bathroom, in bed, and time away from family and relaxation when that’s exactly what you planned the trip for in the first place.

If you want to enjoy travel again and stay healthy the whole way through, I’ve got your back girl. In Part IV of my four-part series: Eating Beyond Your 4 Walls, we’re taking a deep dive into what it means to have a happy gut and successful travel experience anywhere you want to go.

Let’s do this!

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The ultimate road trip step-by-step strategy that works for moms who plan and moms who procrastinate
  • The “must have” piece of carry on luggage that makes plane travel and gut health possible
  • Foolproof ideas to remain gut healthy, even when there’s no kitchen where you’re staying

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My IBD Mom 2021 Holiday Gift Guide

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Eating Beyond Your 4 Walls Part III: The Ultimate Guide to Eating in a House That’s Not Your Own

When you’ve got Crohn’s or colitis, it’s tricky business to eat at someone else’s house. There’s so much to consider, so many pitfalls to throw you off your gut healing diet or make you sick after eating a hidden ingredient that doesn’t work for your sensitive belly.

If eating at a home that’s not your own has been a challenge for you in the past, or if you’ve just started on a gut healthy diet and you’re going crazy only eating at your own house, this episode is the one for you.

And there’s no better time to have this conversation than now because the holidays are the time when we eat away from home more.

We get more invites to hang out with family and friends, maybe at a co-workers house, a school function for your kids, a neighbor gathering, a holiday party with acquaintances…

Living a life of eating for a healthy gut requires us to navigate the rough waters of meals away from home, especially in December.

When you’re a mom, you just can’t get away from it.

But it’s important that we look at the flip side these challenges as well. Sometimes it’s good for us to get out and socialize and finally get to partake in adult conversations. We just need to find a way to stay healthy while we do it.

In this episode, we’re diving deep with my ultimate (10 tip) guide to eating at a house that’s not your own.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • What’s a snack pack, why it’s an absolute must, and what goes in it
  • How to know if you need to bring is a side dish to share or the whole meal deal when you travel to someone’s house
  • The super sly, super pro tip to make every potluck event a success for your belly

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My IBD Mom 2021 Holiday Gift Guide

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

The Thanksgiving Calm Before the Storm

It’s the day before Thanksgiving. How are you feeling mama?

Has your family arrived? Are you traveling for the big day? Are you running around at the last minute trying to make pies and stuff turkeys?

I hope you have my IBD Foodie Thanksgiving Table Cookbook to give you all the recipes you need to keep your taste buds and your belly happy this holiday.

But whatever you’re eating, whatever you’re making, whatever family drama is upon you, I thought we could take just a moment together to find the calm before the storm.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • Why peace of mind is harder for us to achieve than it is for others in our family
  • Finding gratitude in tiny moments that have nothing to do with your Crohn’s or colitis
  • The visualization that will soothe your belly, strengthen your intestines, lower your inflammation, and raise your immune system during times of chaos and unbalance

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My 2021 IBD Foodie Thanksgiving Table Cookbook

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Thanksgiving Recipes That Will Make Your Gut Happy and Your Taste Buds Sing

With Thanksgiving coming up in just a few days, it’s time to ask yourself… am I ready?

For us IBD gals, it isn’t just about the travel or the preparations, or the dread over Aunt Edna’s stifling, perfumey hugs. Those are the types of worries most people have, and let’s face it, their worries are child’s play.

For us, the biggest worry is the food. Will it or won’t it make me sick? And how sick?

In this special bonus minisode, I’m about to share with you my favorite Thanksgiving recipe ideas that will make not just your taste buds happy for the moment, but make your insides happy long after, as well.

Say hello to a happy Thanksgiving again!

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The traditional Thanksgiving dishes an IBD gal should never eat
  • Why your worries and your family’s Thanksgiving worries aren’t even from the same planet
  • My personal promise to you to make sure everything you eat on Thanksgiving works for your sensitive belly

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My 2021 IBD Foodie Thanksgiving Table Cookbook

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Eating Beyond Your 4 Walls Part II: 5 Simple Steps for Foolproof Gut Healthy Restaurant Ordering

How many times have you eaten out, only to barely get home because you are running for the toilet?

For me, there were several times when I didn’t even come close to making it home. The restaurant bathroom and I, we became good friends real fast.

It’s embarrassing, it’s annoying, it holds everyone up in your family (or worse, your friends or colleagues).

And you just feel awful.

Today, I want to change all that for you. I want you to know the absolute pleasure of eating out without feeling like crap after.

Without running to the bathroom, without setting off a flare up, without spending more time on the toilet than you spend with your kids or your partner. Less time in bed and less time at the doctor when the experience really sets off a chain reaction.

I want you to go out and truly enjoy the eating out, feeling confident that what you are eating, won’t harm you.

Instead of your belly saying, “Why me?”

Your belly will say, “Thank you!” (long after the meal is over).

Eating out and not getting sick… it’s possible. In 5 simple steps.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The most important thing you should do 10 minutes before you go out to eat
  • The ordering mistake most moms make that costs them dearly
  • The gut healthy benefit of never opening the menu at a restaurant

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My 2021 IBD Foodie Thanksgiving Table Cookbook

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Eating Beyond Your 4 Walls Part 1: The Secret to Gut Healthy & Gut Happy Eating Out

Most of us love to eat out.  It isn’t just about the food either. 

It’s about the stress free eating you get to enjoy because you didn’t have to work hard making it.  It’s about the companionship of good friends and family while you are out together. 

And it’s about relaxing after a long day of work, kids activities, and commitments.

Dining out is an important part of our everyday life and you shouldn’t have to miss out just because you are eating on a gut healing diet like gluten free, dairy free, Paleo, SCD or GAPS. Not long ago, eating out successfully on diets like this was a nearly impossible. 

Today, it is definitely possible. 

With a couple tweaks and some extra sneaky tips, you’ll be a gut healing dining out expert in no time.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The #1 ingredient to add flavor and zing to your dining out meal, actually fits in your purse
  • The best phone apps that will take your eating out success rate from zero to awesome!
  • The supplement that will give you peace of mind when you eat out

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My 2021 IBD Foodie Thanksgiving Table Cookbook

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Is Your Restrictive Gut Healing Diet Constricting You?

There’s eating healthy and then there’s eating “gut” healthy.

Normal healthy eaters have got nothing on us!

When we eat with healing our Crohn’s and colitis in mind, we take health to a whole new level.

Gut healthy diets like eating gluten-free or dairy free, Paleo or Specific Carbohydrate Diet, IBD-AID or GAPS… they all have amazing positive qualities.

They have the power to help us control our diarrhea, abdominal pain, gas, bloating, mouth sores, fatigue, lack of energy, poor sleep, achy joints, headaches and so much more.

But gut healing diets like these aren’t all puppies and rainbows.

These diets can be quite restrictive, with a myriad of foods you absolutely must stay away from in order to be compliant and see results.

You likely hear everyone on these diets talking about the positive effects, but it’s time we have an honest conversation about their downsides too.

Because these gut healing diets are so restrictive, they also have the power to negatively impact our mental and emotional health.

They lead to feelings of:

🌿 Sadness

🌿 Resentfulness

🌿 Guilt

🌿 Depression

🌿 Frustration

🌿 Jealousy

🌿 Anger

🌿 Denial

🌿 Bargaining

And if we are committed to sticking with restrictive diets like these (and I believe we still can be) because they are helping us physically, we have to find a way to make peace with our diet, so we feel less constricted and less FOMO all the time.

That’s exactly what we’re chatting about on this episode of The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • 3 questions to ask yourself to find out if you’re feeling constricted on your restrictive diet
  • 5 ideas that will help you to embrace your restrictive diet (with less guilt and shame)
  • What to do if you’ve tried your best, but you still feel constricted and want to give up

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My Food Diary System: The Food-Mood-Poop-Journaling System

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Healthier Halloween Recipes for Kids {and mom too}

Halloween is right around the corner. Are you prepared?

Costume? Check.

Pumpkins carved? Check.

A meal plan fit to celebrate Halloween in style? Not so much!

Don’t sweat it my friend. I’ve got your Gut Healthy Halloween Meal Deal which includes scrumptious, kid-tested breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, and dessert recipes all in one handy dandy recipe booklet.

And in this episode of The Cheeky Podcast, I’m sharing my mom-tested behind-the-scenes best Halloween recipe practices that I’ve learned after making these spook-tac-u-lar treats over and over.

Extra bonus tips, extra ways to make these recipes work for where you’re at on your gut healing journey, and extra hints to make these goodies tasty for everyone in your household.

I’m only spilling the tea with my best Halloween meal tips on this episode, so go grab your recipe booklet and get ready to take some notes!

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The secret to making your grain free pancakes light and fluffy
  • The best way to get your kids to eat something new
  • A sinfully healthy Halloween dessert you’ll be dying to serve your family

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

My Gut Healthy Halloween Meal Deal Recipe Booklet

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

{#herIBDstory} From Ulcerative Colitis to SCD: Jennifer Brown Leads A Life of Happenstance

Three weeks into October…

Are you already hitting a wall finding easy fall recipes that are good for your crohn’s or colitis, and also get the kid stamp of approval too?

If you love a tasty fall recipe that’s also good for your gut and something everyone in your clan will enjoy, you’re going to love this episode.

You’re also going to love this episode if you’re looking for a real life story of how the specific carbohydrate diet can work to help control your IBD symptoms. With me on this episode of The Cheeky Podcast is Jennifer Brown, SCD follower and chief recipe developer at her website A Life of Happenstance.

Jennifer and I talk about so many hot button issues for those of us with Crohn’s and colitis.

We explore how anxiety and stress affects our disease, we get into hormones and pregnancy’s effects on Crohn’s and colitis, we talk about Jennifer’s Specific Carbohydrate Diet journey and how this gutsy lady who never knew how to shop for groceries or make meals became an SCD pro, a seasoned cook, and a recipe developer.

Grab your tea and put your feet up mama. Get ready for a juicy conversation!

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • How Jennifer found success on the SCD when she didn’t know how to grocery shop or cook before she got started
  • The ways stress and anxiety has an impact on your Crohn’s or colitis
  • How you can get your hands on Jennifer’s latest fall recipes (I’ll just tease you with 3 little words– apple cider cake)

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

CONNECT WITH JENNIFER:

Jennifer’s Website: A Life of Happenstance

Jennifer on Instagram

Jennifer on Facebook

CONNECT WITH KARYN:

Karyn on Facebook

Schedule Your FREE 30-Minute IBD Consult

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.

Bonus Episode: More Fall & Winter Immune Boosting Ideas {for you and your kiddos}

Last week’s episode: 5 Supplements That Make the Cut to Boost Your Immune System and Keep you Healthy and Your Crohn’s or Colitis Happy This Cold and Flu Season covered a lot of ground.

We talked about supplements that should be a staple in your house—for both you and your kiddos. We went over the highest quality, batch tested brands that are worth the purchase. We also learned about the best online resources for those supplements.

But there’s a few things we ran out of time for.

Kitchen staples (food and drinks) and important natural detoxifiers we should all keep on hand as preventives and remedies for the myriad of germs that constantly circle us this time of year.

These kitchen staples are the perfect complement for your supplement arsenal.

In this bonus episode of The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD, we wrap up our important immune boosting conversation.

It’s a conversation that will not only keep the fall and winter sickies at bay but will keep your Crohn’s & colitis happy too!

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The immune boosting beverage that also works as a healthier alternative to coffee too
  • Hands down, the best honey to use as a cough suppressant (and it’s good for your belly too)
  • The morning preventive detox water recipe that you can make with staples that are already in your kitchen

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Get Your FREE Kitchen Arsenal Morning Detox Recipes Here

Got a Question? Bring it to My Facebook Page

Episode 26: Far Infrared Light Therapy

Episode 46: 4 Stellar Coffee Substitutes That Make Your Gut and Your Tastebuds Happy

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.

5 Supplements That Make the Cut for Your Fall/Winter Immune Boosting Arsenal

So I’ve got some good news and some bad news.

Good news first.

Fall is in full swing and all the fun that goes along with it is happening. Beautiful fall leaves, kids in school, pumpkin patches, my favorite delish root veggies are at their peak of the season and are ready to be roasted.

Now for the bad news.

Fall is here and that also means we’re heading into cold and flu season. Covid is still wreaking havoc in some parts of the United States and definitely in other parts of the world. There’s never been a more important time to boost your immune system.

So all of those ailments that love to take up residence in your body, those lingering viruses and infections—they simply pass you by, your Crohn’s or colitis stays stable and you enjoy all the good times that fall and winter have to offer!

Today I’m dishing on the Top 5 Immune Boosting Supplements to keep on hand this fall and winter as preventives and remedies for everything that ails you.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The 2 reasons why your vitamin C isn’t working as well as it could be
  • The problem with most vitamin D supplements
  • The fall/winter immune boosting supplement your kiddos shouldn’t be without

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Got a Question? Bring it to My Facebook Page

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

Episode 24 Soup’s On: The Best Gut Repair Soups to Bust That Flare-Up

Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe

iHerb.com Online Supplements

PureFormulas.com Online Supplements

Episode Links:

Vitamin D, Vitamin K, and Bone Health

T-Lymphocytes and Inflammatory Bowel Disease

9 Benefits of NAC

Benefits of Glutathione

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.

Is This a Flare-Up? 3 Questions to Ask to Know For Sure

I’m flaring bad!

Oh, she’s in a flare-up! It’s a flare-up!

How often have you heard statements like these from your fellow Crohnie’s or gals with UC? I bet you’ve said things like this about yourself at least time or two, or 5 or 20 or more depending on how long you’ve had your digestive disorder.

When it comes to Crohn’s and colitis, it’s all about the flare-up. We live in a constant state of, “Am I flaring or am I in remission?” and it can definitely be all consuming.

But how do you know if what you’re going through is truly flare-up material when it could be a stomach pain like all “normal” people have from time to time or some diarrhea or other digestive symptoms from something completely unrelated to your Crohn’s or colitis.

That’s what today’s episode is all about. How do you know if it really is a flare-up?

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • Why getting on a flare-up right away is the key to a digestive blip vs a long term sideline from life
  • Why Covid complicates things
  • Now that you know it’s a flare-up, what do you do?

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

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.

7 Reasons Why the Specific Carbohydrate Diet Didn’t Work For You

I see it all the time.

Women come to me and say, I don’t get it. The SCD (the specific carbohydrate diet) seems to work for everyone with Crohn’s and colitis. I’ve tried it and I did everything right—fanatical adherence. And I still feel awful—maybe even worse.

Why didn’t it work for me?

Have you experienced this too? It’s so much more common than you might think when you’re out there doing this on your own feeling like the only one.

If this sounds like you, you’ve tried the SCD, you did everything the experts told you, you rocked it, but you still feel horrible. If you were left feeling defeated, frustrated and alone—this episode is tailor-made for you.

And if the SCD is on your radar, but you’re still gathering info and trying to decide when is the best time to start, this episode is definitely for you too mama because it’s going to save you wasted time and heartache as you venture out into the world of SCD

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • The reason why even though you feel like your miles away from SCD success, you really just steps away
  • The best nut flour for your digestive health
  • Why grains could be on the menu for your SCD gut healing plan

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

Episode #5: The Top 3 SCD Missteps Everyone Makes

Episode #25 Coconut Flour 101

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.

Crohn’s & Colitis Meal Planning Made Easy

Happy New Year!

I can hear you saying, what?

I like to think of September as The New Year for Moms. When the kids go back to school, it’s time to get more “you” time, time to start something new that will give you big, bold traction on your Crohn’s and colitis healing, something like… (drum roll)… meal planning.

Wa-wa (like you got the answer wrong on a game show).

Not the climax you were looking for I bet. Many mamas groan when they hear those two words, but that’s only because they haven’t figured it out yet.

Today, I’m helping you figure out how doing meal planning the right way can give you less stress, more free time, and allow you to spend less moola on groceries.

Don’t think it’s possible? Oh, it is! Come join me and I’ll show you how.

Three Things You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • What is meal planning with your gut health in mind
  • 11 amazing benefits of meal planning that are also good for your gut
  • 3 tips to help you start meal planning today

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts

Mentioned in This Episode:

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.

Crohn’s & Colitis Friendly Condiments from the Condiment Queen

Do you love condiments as much as me? Ketchup, BBQ sauce, mustard, salsa, and dips like guacamole and hummus?

You bet you do!

They add a little flava-flav to just about everything you eat. But when it comes to being able to enjoy condiments like these on your favorite foods, you run into two problems…

#1- The ingredients in traditional condiments wreak havoc on your gut (whether you know it or not).

And…

#2- Condiments like these, the ones you find at your local grocery store, are never on your gut healing diet. The ingredients are either full of sugar or chemicals (and often, both).

If you’re a condiment lover, hold on to your hat mama because this week on the podcast, I’m setting you up for condiment success.

I’m dishing out some seriously good news when it comes to these flavor makers. Condiments that turn your plain food from iffy to spiffy (yep, I said it) and at the same time, make your belly happy too!

We talk about:

  • The ingredients in 95% of all condiments that make your gut do a tailspin
  • Quick and simple recipes if you want to make your condiments at home (great for knowing exactly what’s in them)
  • How you know when you’re ready to start eating condiments like mayonnaise, ketchup, BBQ sauce (all the good stuff) when you’re on a gut healing diet
  • Why condiments are the key to getting your kids to eat healthy food

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll have simple and delicious condiment recipes at your fingertips, knowledge about which store-bought condiments are gut healthy, and access to all the best condiment brands on the market. You go, condiment queen.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [07:00] The ingredients in 95% of all condiments that make your gut do a tailspin
  • [09:16] Why Mrs. Butterworth isn’t as friendly as she looks
  • [14:10] Quick and simple recipes if you want to make your condiments at home (great for knowing exactly what’s in them)
  • [15:00] Gut healthy, yet super tasty condiment ideas you can buy at the grocery store
  • [15:31] The absolute best condiment brands you can always trust
  • [16:18] How you know when you’re ready to start eating condiments like mayonnaise, ketchup, BBQ sauce (all the good stuff) when you’re on a gut healing diet
  • [19:15] Why condiments are the key to getting your kids to eat healthy food
  • [22:23] The benefits of the condiment caddy and what to put it in
  • [24:04] The best way to take this conversation to the next level and get your gut healing plan in place today

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

You’re FREE Resource: Condiments for a Healthy Belly and a Happy Mama

Book Your 30-Minute IBD Consultation HERE

DM Me on Facebook

Episode Transcript:

Do you love condiments as much as me? Ketchup, BBQ sauce, mustard, salsa… dips, aw dips, like guacamole and hummus?

Definitely tasty, but the problem is, with so many added ingredients like sugar and salt, plus chemicals to enhance flavor and color, and preservatives to increase shelf life, they’re usually not so healthy for your gut. But today we’re going to change all that so you can rest assured that the condiments your consuming aren’t messing with your digestive system. In this episode, I’m going to share with you the best gut healthy condiments you can have, ways to make the unhealthy condimnents healthy, and all the while, keep your Crohn’s or colitis belly happy.

If you love condiments as much as I do, it’s time to take your condiments from iffy to spiffy. Uh, the corniness has begun. Let’s get this condiment party started!

[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]

Hello dear one and welcome back to The Cheeky Podcast—the best place to be for moms with Crohn’s and colitis who are trying to heal with out of the box remedies that honor not just your symptoms, but your mom lifestyle as well. I am so thrilled to share this time with you today. Whether you’re dropping the kids off at school, washing the dishes, exercising or just laying down and chilling like you deserve mama, thanks for hanging out with me for a bit, I couldn’t appreciate you more. I love this podcast medium. It’s the perfect way to connect with you, my fellow gut loving mama.

After last week’s deeply personal and sometimes dark episode, episode 50 (go check it out if you haven’t yet), I needed something a little lighter this week. Something equally important for your gut health, but a little lighter. Something that brings joy to my life, and I hope joy to your life too.

And that’s condiments.

You know me as Karyn, the Crohn’s and Colitis Health Coach, but in my family, I’m known as the condiment queen. Move over Queen Elizabeth. I never met a condiment I didn’t like. Whether it was pre-Crohn’s as a kid, or after I started eating gut healing and healthy food, all the way to today. Condiments and I are, as the cool kids say, BFF’s. How about you? Do you love a good condiment? Do you have to have ketchup and mustard or mayonnaise on your burger? Maybe it’s relish or barbecue sauce? I’ll put condiments on anything but when it comes to a burger for me there’s nothing better than a barbecue sauce mayo combo and for a hot dog I like traditional yellow mustard and relish. If I’m lucky, some kraut.

Mouth watering yet?

[05:30] I’d love to know your sauce or a condiment obsessions. I remember way back in the day, when I was a kid, I had to put ketchup on everything. From breakfast eggs to dinner steak and everything in between, ketchup was my jam. My youngest child must take after me because he was quite the ketchup connoisseur as well. Lately he’s started to shy away from ketchup a bit, I think because his brothers like to tease him about it (and we all know how the whole older sibling younger sibling dynamic works), but if he had his way I think he’d put ketchup on salad.

Like I said, as a kid it was all about ketchup, but as I got older I fell in love with blue cheese on my pizza—maybe for you it’s ranch… fries dipped in mayonnaise (you can thank visiting the lovely country of Belgium for that), and to this day whenever I go out to a fancy restaurant, I have to order a sauce like bearnaise, or green peppercorn for my filet mignon.

[07:00] Condiments can enhance the flavor of pretty much everything we eat, but condiments, the kind we buy at the grocery store are usually really unhealthy for even healthy people, and for those of us with gut disorders like Crohn’s and colitis, the ingredients can be so disastrously disruptive, that at best, they said us to the toilet, and at worst they ignite the flames of a flareup.

Most store-bought condiments like ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, salsa, salad dressings, hot sauce, soy sauce… all the ones that are probably in most kitchen refrigerators are usually filled with added sugars and salt. And over time, the sugar especially, will mess with your gut and create a bacterial imbalance and a host of distressing digestive symptoms.

If it was only natural sugar and natural salt that was added to condiments, I think we could find some work arounds, but the worst part of about these grocery store condiments is that they are filled with artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, even chemical preservatives and those of us with the gut disorders can be really sensitive ingredients like these. Even if you don’t feel it right away (like running to the bathroom 5 minutes after you eat), these artificial ingredients can make your Crohn’s or colitis worse and be one of the factors that keeps us from finding true and lasting remission.

Let me  give you a few examples so you can see exactly what I’m talking about here.

Let’s take maple syrup- Mrs. Butterworth? Seems like a friendly lady right. Think again. That’s definitely not maple syrup that’s hangin out in that kind of freaky looking bottle where we pour the syrup from the top of her head—come on, you know it’s weird. Syrups like Mrs. Butterworth, not to pick on her because there’s lots of other maple syrup imposters out there, have no maple syrup in them. Instead they’re filled with high fructose corn syrup, and, because hfcs wasn’t enough, then some more corn syrup, and then some cane sugar because the hfcs and the corn syrup wasn’t enough sweetness for the manufactures. Also caramel color and sodium hexa-meta-phosphate, sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate (preservatives), and then there’s that added artificial flavorings (and who even knows what that means).

BBQ sauce is loaded with multiple types of sugar.

Many queso dips contain MSG.

Teriyaki and soy sauce are both loaded with sodium and gluten.

And don’t even get me started on your favorite store bought, supposedly healthy salad dressing. A salad should be a healthy meal. But the chemicals, the artificial flavors, preservatives, the gut disrupting gums that are used to keep the ingredients emulsified, the added sugar… makes your “healthy” meal anything but healthy.

If you’ve looked into or started any gut healing diet for your Crohn’s and colitis, you know that none of these store-bought condiments are allowed. There’s just too much crap. They’re not natural, and their ingredients cause major disruptions to your already disrupted gut.

So, even though you know you’ll miss condiments like crazy, you are motivated mama and you start that gut healthy, gut healing diet and all these condiments are off-limits. You’re eating dry chicken and tasteless vegetables. Your food has no pizzazz, no flavor, no flair. And it just makes you feel serious FOMO. Everyone else can eat jazzy, spicy, bold, flavorful, delicious treats, but you’re stuck with boring, bland, tasteless cardboard.

[13:04] If you’re smiling or laughing right now, you get it. You get the dilemma. It’s not fair.

But, hold the phone mama because I’m here to change all of that for you. Just because you’re eating gut healthy doesn’t mean your food has to be tasteless or boring. Hell to the no! Healthy food can be super tasty. You just have to add your own flair to it.

You can say yes to ketchup, you can say yes to a sweet and tangy barbecue sauce, you can say yes to creamy, delectable mayonnaise and salad dressing and sauces that make your Asian dishes sing. It’s all about finding a way to either create your condiments in a really simple and speedy way in your kitchen or knowing which brands have ingredients are best for your sensitive digestive system.

If you’re like me and you love condiments and food that tastes good, you’re going to definitely appreciate a brand new resource I have to share. I created this one especially for my clients who understandably refuse to give up flava when they’re in gut healing mode. It’s my pdf guide—”Condiments for a Healthy Belly and a Happy Mama” and it’s yours absolutely free. This condiment resource has quick and simple recipes for some of your favorite condiments, it has ideas for healthy condiments you can buy at the grocery store, and it also has my favorite condiment brands, so you know exactly what to buy and where, when it comes to your purchasing options. If you are a condiment queen like me, you’re going to love this resource. You can get it by going to Karynhaley.com/condiments That’s karynhaley.com/condiments

You can also get your free resource by checking out the show notes. I’ll leave a link there as well.

Before we wrap up for today, I want to address one of the questions I always get asked about condiments when it comes to eating for your gut health. Many gut healing diets like the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, The GAPS diet, Paleo, even the gluten-free or dairy free diets, don’t get into when is it OK to add condiments (healthier condiments) like these to your every day eating plan.

[16:18] Although everyone is individual and some condiments that work for one mama will not work for another, the rule of thumb I like to follow is when you can eat all of the ingredients in the condiment separately without any G.I. or non-G.I. reaction, you can eat that condiment, in all its glory.

So if you’re waiting to enjoy mayonnaise for example, check out your mayonnaise recipe if you’re making it homemade, or the ingredients list for a store-bought option. It might include ingredients like eggs, a specific type of oil, maybe some Dijon mustard, sometimes you’ll see lemon juice or vinegar in mayonnaise. Can you tolerate all of these ingredients individually, by themselves? If you can, that condiment is yours for the taking.

Make sense?

Cool, so go for it with healthy homemade or store-bought condiments from my pdf resource guide because they really will jazz up any gut healing food you’re eating. I remember when I began the Specific Carbohydrate Diet back in 2008, condiments and seasonings became my go-to for every meal. It’s amazing how wonderful and deliciously healthy gut healing food can taste when you have the right condiments and the right spices and seasonings. It doesn’t hide the food like so many traditional condiments do. It brings out the natural flavor in the food. It’s just an absolutely different gastric experience when you eat this way.

So that’s good news isn’t it? Condiments are not off the table even when you are trying to eat gut healthy for your Crohn’s and colitis. Want to know something that might be even better than that? I’m going to tell you how to do condiments like the bad ass boss mom I know you are.

Let’s do condiments like only a mom can.

When you’ve collected all of these delicious and healthy condiments, you want to have them at the ready for you, but you can also have them at the ready for your kids too. Condiments are the key to getting your kids to eat healthy food.

[19:15] I’ve gotta shout that from the roof top one more time: Condiments are the key to getting your kids to eat healthy food.

The key to doing condiments like the mom I know you are is to set up a condiment caddy, one that is circular and spinnable. Some people call it a Lazy Susan. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, Google Lazy Susan. You’ll see exactly the device I mean. It’s a round platter that spins. When it comes to breakfast, or lunch, or dinner, set out the condiment caddy right in the middle of the table and watch what it does for your kids taste buds.

There’s two rules that bad ass moms follow when it comes to the condiment caddy. Rule #1 about the condiment caddy that works perfectly in your kids favor is that they are allowed to put whatever condiment from the condiment caddy they choose on their food. Even if you think it’s gross. I mean, even if they choose to put ketchup on their salad.

The second rule about the condiment caddy is that initially, they are allowed to put as much of that condiment as they want wherever they want. So again, back to getting your kids to eat salad, they are allowed to put as much salad dressing on that salad as they wish… at first.

Those two rules definitely go your kids favor. But with rule number two, as you get your kid used to whatever healthy food you’re dishing up, you start to pull back a little bit on the condiment. Eventually and hopefully you’ll be at an amount you consider to be sane.

[22:23] I got my kids to eat broccoli this way. A little parmesan cheese and butter on their broccoli and voila, they are now broccoli lovers. Same thing with spinach salad—at first they loaded it up with ranch dressing. Little by little, they were easing up on the dressing and loading up on the spinach—well at least it worked for 2 of my kids and don’t they say 2 out of 3 ain’t bad!

And if you’re wondering what would I possibly put in my condiment caddy, you’ll definitely want to check out my free pdf resource: Condiments for a Healthy Belly and a Happy Mama. It’s got condiments galore so I have no doubt you’ll find some condiments you and your kids will love. Remember you can find your PDF resource by going to the show notes or typing in KarynHaley.com/condiments into your browser.

Do it like a the amazing mom I know you are with the condiment caddy.

OK my friend, did I answer all of your questions about the best ways to use condiments to jazz up healthy, gut healing food… about buying healthy condiments at the grocery store and making super simple delicious condiments that will make your belly happy at home… and how to get the kids involved by making condiments the gateway to health food? If anything I’ve talked about today is unclear or you still have questions, be sure to DM me on Facebook. I’m happy to continue the conversation over there. On Facebook I am @TheIBDHealthCoach. @ TheIBDHealth coach.

[24:04] And if you’re a Crohn’s or colitis mama and you’re struggling—maybe you were just diagnosed, or you’re struggling to get off the toilet, struggling to have enough energy to enjoy time with your kiddos, struggling to get your head around the steps you need to take to create a healing path for you—that’s definitely my specialty… know that I’m here for you. I offer free 30-min coaching sessions for moms with Crohn’s and colitis who are ready to get clear on their healing path, so they can move forward with confidence, clarity, and good gut health. During our 30-minute consultation, we set goals together, we talk about how we can marry your symptoms and your lifestyle to create the best plan for your needs and wants, and we talk about how we can work together with me as your guide to get you to the other side faster and with less roadblocks. And whether we decide working together is a good fit or not, you leave the session with tools you can use to jump start your Crohn’s or colitis healing journey right away.

Win-win.

If you’re ready to take big bold steps mama to heal your Crohn’s or colitis, I’ve got you covered. Schedule your free 30-minute consultation at KarynHaley.com/IAMREADY.  That’s KarynHaley.com/IAMREADY

Dear one, just for today because we like to take it one day at a time– be bold, be brave, be kind to yourself, but always, always be true to who you are.

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

Chat soon!

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.

After 35 Years With IBD: 5 IBD Breakdowns That Turned into Breakthroughs

It’s the big 5-0 (episode 50) and I’m getting personal to celebrate this milestone.

Thanks for hanging out with me over the past 50 episodes and for stopping by each week for your dose of IBD information from a food, lifestyle, and mindset perspective. I appreciate you more than you know!

Throughout episodes 1-50, you’ve heard others share their story. You’ve heard me talk about my clients, but I haven’t really shared a lot about my IBD journey, up close and personal, warts and all.

You’ve even sent me some really lovely emails asking why I do the work I do and why I started this podcast. You asked for a while now, so here’s goes nothing.

Today, I’m getting vulnerable, taking a break from my introverted self, and pulling back the curtain to share a few things I’ve learned in my 35-year Crohn’s experience with 5 breakdowns that threatened to take me down, and 5 breakthrough paths I chose to take instead. There’s lots of heartache in this one, but with lots of triumph thrown in too. Hope you enjoy and that some part of the episode speaks directly to you.

We talk about:

  • The dangers of using prednisone steroids long term
  • How bad 80’s hair isn’t so bad when you consider all the other bad things that happen in this life
  • Why gut healing food isn’t the only answer when it comes to keeping your IBD in remission
  • How you can get through any embarrassing IBD bathroom situation with a little stealth and a lot of humor
  • How everything in your IBD life comes back to your Wheel of IBD Wellness

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll definitely have your answer to why I created this podcast and why I do the work that I do. And most of all, I hope this information sparks some inspiration for you to keep fighting when you want to give up, keep asking questions and finding answers, and always, always be the one in charge of your healthcare.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [06:24] How bad 80’s hair isn’t so bad when you consider all the other bad things that happen in this life
  • [15:50] What a Sitz Bath is and why it could be your best friend when you Crohn’s or colitis rectal involvement
  • [16:49] How you can get through any embarrassing IBD bathroom situation with a little stealth and a lot of humor
  • [20:55] The dangers of using prednisone steroids long term
  • [22:15] The benefits of having a supportive mom by your side
  • [32:01] How you’ll need to pivot your IBD plan many times in your lifetime
  • [35:00] Why one particular infertility doctor is stupid
  • [37:53] Why you shouldn’t get cocky when it’s 10-0 in the 7th inning stretch
  • [45:15] Why gut healing food isn’t the only answer when it comes to keep your IBD in remission
  • [46:36] How everything in your IBD life comes back to your Wheel of IBD Wellness
  • [53:10] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

DM Me on Facebook

Episode 30: I’m Doing Everything Right, How Come I’m Not Better

Dr. Allison Siebecker

Episode Transcript:

Welcome to episode 50 of The Cheeky Podcast. I can’t freaking believe it. Our little engine that could is raising our consciousness and giving hope to women all around the world that we mamas with IBD, we are bad assess and we will never give up, and we will never stop finding the true healing path in all of us.

Podcasts are and amazing invention, aren’t they? Connecting us to each other so we can find ways to help our Crohn’s and our colitis and I’m really proud to be a part of that.

Have you been with me since the beginning? You go girl! Joined halfway through? Amen sister friend? Maybe this is your first episode. Welcome aboard! No matter when you joined the conversation mama, I am so happy to have you here, I’m so grateful for you and I can’t wait to share some IBD wisdom with you in this special and very personal episode #50. Buckle up, because it might just be a bumpy ride.

Here we go!

Hey hey dear one. I’m so happy to share this time with you today. It’s episode 50. Whoo, hoo!! We made it. And to celebrate, would you do me a favor? Whether this is your first or 50th time with The Cheeky Podcast in your ears, if you’re enjoying the information, would you please take a minute to give us a positive rating and review in itunes? It helps other IBD mamas hear about all the IBD goodness we’re putting out each week. Thanks dear one, I appreciate you. Now we’ve got lots to talk about today.

Like I mentioned at the top, this is episode 50 and throughout the weeks and months that the podcast has been on, you’ve sent the most lovely and supportive emails and several have asked me to do this for quite a while. You tell me that the how to’s have been valuable in your healing, and you’re loving the interviews, but you’re wondering why I haven’t shared my story yet. What made me want to start the podcast? What’s my IBD story?

If I’m being really honest with you and with myself, I’ve put off talking in depth about my IBD story because I’m just not that comfortable being at the center of the story. I love telling client stories, talking about what I’ve learned on my IBD journey, but talking about myself, my mama always taught me the best way to shine is to shine a light on someone else.

But today, in honor of the big 5-0, I’m going to swallow my introverted nerves, and put it all out there, my Crohn’s story—at lease the parts I think will benefit you. I hope it inspires you in some way, to see your story in my story, to keep pushing forward, to never give up, to believe in your power, to know the strength and value of what you bring to the table with your intuition and insights– through all your provider interactions, and ultimately how you have the power to take charge of your own healthcare decisions. That’s the main thing I’ve learned in my 35 years with IBD. So, I’m getting vulnerable with 5 breakdowns I’ve experienced in my time with IBD and how I was able to turn those breakdowns into breakthroughs. Maybe you’ll see a bit of what you’ve gone through in my story, and insights to take with you for what you have yet to go through on your IBD journey.

Let’s go ahead and dive in with breakdown to breakthrough #1. It all starts with the diagnosis.

Like so many with Crohn’s and colitis, my story begins in a hospital.   

At 17 years old, I was just graduating from high school, ready to go to college 3 ½ hours from home to study dance with hopes of continuing my dancing career that started at age 3.   

I was ready to take on the world!   

[06:24] And let me give you just a little more context into where I was at, at that time. In my nuclear family, I was the “baby” in a house full of boys—the only girl with 3 older brothers- or more accurately, it was more like having 4 fathers who loved to watch my every move! I grew up in an upper/middle class family in the privileged community of Orchard Park, NY.  Go Quakers! I was fairly sheltered, moderately spoiled (although my brothers would tell you mega spoiled) and through most of my life up til that point, my biggest worry was “Do I have enough hairspray to hold up my big 80’s hair?” 

But back at the hospital, I was coming out of exploratory surgery where a colorectal surgeon was trying to find out why I kept having bloody poops and why I had several rectal fissures (tears in my rectal lining that bled when I pooped or sat down, or stood up, or moved…). 

“Hrfmmmbbrrrr….. Croobsh Distreshffff….. Vefishr Siknerth…..”   

No need to adjust your earbuds. These are just the sounds I woke up to as the anesthesia wore off after surgery. I can still hear it in my head today, these muffled voices and I remember seeing a blur of people I vaguely recognized as my parents and my doctor.  They were talking in hushed tones like people do in a hospital.  I remember, I couldn’t make out what they were saying, just those mumbles.  And the image lasted only a moment and I was out again, blissfully unaware that my life was about to change forever.  When I think back on those last moments of unknowing I had IBD, I wish I would have known that change was coming.  I wish I would have fully embraced those last few moments of true childhood innocence. 

As many loving parents do in a situation like this, mine tried and shield me from the emotional and physical pain they knew would follow.  Even when recover and wake from surgery, they didn’t tell me anything.  They said “the procedure went well” and “we’ll talk when we get home”.   

This isn’t the first time I have been shielded from the truth.   

Since I was 14, strange symptoms were creeping up with no known cause.  I went from stomach pain to esophagus pain to canker sores in my mouth and finally to bloody poop.  Well-meaning doctors diagnosed me with everything from Esophagitis to Endometriosis. 

It seems crazy to me now that they didn’t put 2 and 2 together. Or if they did, they were clearly getting 5!

So many of us have experiences like this before we get our IBD diagnosis. I’ve heard about this happening over and over from GLC members and clients—that it took years to get a proper diagnosis.

I have no clue why it takes so long.

 At the time, when I was getting all these non-IBD diagnoses—for 3 years, I didn’t question anything.  

I never asked, “Why would an otherwise healthy 14-year-old girl have esophagitis?”  In hindsight, I feel kind of stupid for not asking the right questions, but I don’t even know what the right questions would have been.

THE DIAGNOSIS THAT CHANGES MY LIFE

A couple days after that surgery, my parents sat me down to tell me the truth, “The doctor did a biopsy while you were at the hospital and discovered you have Crohn’s Disease.”  

You know exactly what my response was, I know you do. What’s Crohn’s Disease?

I didn’t know what Crohn’s was, but I knew the word DISEASE and it definitely didn’t sound good. 

At 17, I endured my first real breakdown moment in life when I got that diagnosis. Can you think back to that moment for you? When you got that diagnosis. It sucks right? Definitely a breakdown moment. Maybe a little bit of a relief because now you know what you have, but at the same time, it still sucks.

For me, sure, I had had some teenage challenges before this. I had boyfriends dump me, got through catty girl stuff and actually endured some pretty nasty bullying in middle school, but this breakdown, this IBD diagnosis was different. It made the other teenager challenges seem silly and frivolous.

The good news is that with this breakdown, I didn’t stay in the broken phase very long.

Even though any sort of physical healing from Crohn’s was still 20 years away for me, this physical breakdown of my body, led to an emotional breakthrough that still carries me through every challenge I encounter in my life.

Something I have to tell you as a side note, before I go any further is that I come from a long line of really strong women.  Great, great grandmothers and great aunts that immigrated from Italy with nothing.  An Italian grandmother I called Nana who lived a life of only going to school until the 4th grade, never owning a single toy or a doll, marrying an abusive husband, yet still carrying on– always bringing me to laughing tears with the stories she would tell.   

And my mother, who underwent multiple eye surgeries—6 or 7 I think before she turned 18 months old—throughout her life, she was legally blind in one eye. When my mom was 77 years old, she was diagnosed with liver cancer. Her doctors gave her 6 months to live, but she lived 6 years—mainly out of shear willpower and faith.

The Train Leaves the Station 

It’s because of these remarkable women in my life that after I graduated from high school and was diagnosed with Crohn’s that it was just expected I would carry on, strong and confident, that I could get through this, no sweat.  The strength of the maternal women in my life got me through that first blur of a summer with multiple doctor’s appointments, multiple medications and a new lifestyle to adjust to.  

In July, the summer I was about to turn 18, I remember vividly a conversation I had with my mom where I said to her, “Mom, I don’t think I can go to college anymore.  I’m so sick.  I’ve lost so much weight.  I’m so scared of how I will make it at college 3 ½ hours away from home.”   

My mom didn’t miss a beat.  In a loving way she sat me down and said, “It doesn’t matter that you’ve been diagnosed with Crohn’s, Karyn. You will get through it. What’s more important is that the train of life is leaving the station.  If you don’t get on the train, Crohn’s be damned, your life will pass you by.”  That was all the discussion we had about it. I went to college.

With support like that, there’s no room for self-doubt.   

My first physical breakdown of the diagnosis of Crohn’s that turned into an emotional breakthrough happened when I went away to college two months after being diagnosed and I am eternally grateful that my mom didn’t let me wallow and lag behind.  College still holds some of the best memories and life lessons I could ever imagine.  

IBD and College: Life with Crohn’s in a College Far Away 

Breakdown #2

Breakdown #2 that turned into a breakthrough picks up my story about where we just left off. The breakdown begins as soon as I hit the college dorms.

It involves a sitz bath, 5-ASA medications that didn’t work, a year’s worth of steroids with 20 lbs of weight gain, face mooning, and finally becoming suicidal.

Let me break down my breakdown for you.

So, I have to start off first with complete honesty. While I was at college, I did engage in the typical college antics—parties, drinking, sorority life— but much of my college life, as I’m sure you can imagine, having IBD too— it was different than those around me.  

When I went to college, I was having really painful poops.  Like cry out in pain when I pooped painful. Those rectal fissures I told you about earlier?  Still there, except now I had more of them.

[15:50] It hurt so much to poop, that I had to use this contraption called a Sitz bath when I went #2. Have you heard of these? If you’re having painful poops, maybe a Sitz bath can help you too. Basically a sitz bath is a plastic, round bucket that sits on your toilet seat. You fill it with warm water and do your business in the water filled sitz bath, then flush all the contents down the toilet. In my experience, the warmer the water the better. It definitely lessens a painful poop when you have fissures or hemorrhoids.  

Every time I had to poop my freshman year in college, I’d go to the community toilet in the dorm (yeah, one of those gross community bathrooms everyone on the floor uses), I’d go in there hiding the Sitz Bath, a jug for the water and a towel to wipe my bum in a duffle bag.  I’d try to go to the bathroom when no one was around so they wouldn’t see me filling the water jug at the sink before I went into the bathroom stall.  I was super self-conscious that someone would ask, “why the hell are you filling a water jug and taking it into the stall?” 

Sometimes I was stealth and no one walked in.

[16:49] Sometimes, my dorm mates would see me and give me really strange looks, but thankfully they never questioned it—at least out loud.

I can laugh about the ridiculousness of it all now! 

Freshman year, there was also the rectal abscess I endured where I got a high fever from the infectious, puss filled, hard, sack in my butt. My doctor inserted a tube just to the right of my rectum to drain it. I had to keep it in for moths, and I hobbled along, even danced in a showcase performance, with this small tube sticking out of my butt. It sucked.

Someone please tell me that the treatment for rectal abscesses has advanced over the years. That’s just crazy!

But the worst part of my college experience happened my sophomore year when my disease had progressed beyond Dipentum, Asacol, Pentasa and antibiotics like Flagyl and Cipro. 

Shout an “Amen” if you remember any of these oldies! They’ve all been replaced with other, hopefully better, 5-ASA’s now. 

My doc told me it was time for steroids— specifically prednisone.  And of course this was a point in my life where I was a good little patient and did what I was told. If my doc said, steroids, I said, sure!  He mentioned to me about the weight gain, the “mooning” of the face, the acne that might follow… but the part about the emotional symptoms that might come up… not so much.   

Plus this was in the early 90’s. The days when steroids were given long term. After one year on these toxic drugs, I was teaming with anger outbursts, I was so moody my friends never knew if Dr. Jeckle or Mr. Hyde would show up, I was being teased with guys telling me, “You missed the freshman 15 and decided to gain the sophomore 20, huh? And finally it was the long term depression that set me into a downward spiral and messed with my mind. Eventually I started having thoughts of suicide.

Talk about a massive breakdown. How could this possibly turn into a breakthrough? Again, it took my remarkable mom stepping up and stepping in.

[20:55] One day when she was visiting me at college, I told my mom that I had started to feel suicidal. Again, this unflappable lady, she didn’t miss a beat. She marched me straight to my doctor’s office—I remember we definitely didn’t have an appointment—she demanded that the doctor see me immediately. I don’t think we even waited in the waiting room (maybe because the staff was afraid of others encountering my mom’s wrath) and when the doctor came in, she told that doctor that he was to immediately taper my steroids. She was appalled that they had kept me on them for so long and that they had better come up with a new solution, pronto.

Of course, I can’t claim with 100% certainty that it was the steroids, but I do know that I was never suicidal before prednisone, and I have never been suicidal since.   

Thank God, it isn’t standard practice to keep patients on steroids so long term anymore. I feel confident that this breakdown won’t happen to you.

Breakdown to breakthrough #2: suicidal on steroids to mama saving the day.

Breakdown to breakthrough #3 takes me from painful years of infertility to finally having the blessing of three amazing children. Let me tell you about it.

If you’re listening to this podcast, chances are you’ve got kids. You’ve got Crohn’s or colitis and you’ve got kids. It’s a real struggle isn’t it—kids and IBD? I’ve definitely had my challenges being a mom with Crohn’s, but I wouldn’t change it for anything. I think I always new I wanted to be a mom—from as long as I can remember, but there was a time in my life when I thought my IBD would keep me from my motherhood dreams.

IBD and Marriage: Is he husband material? 

For many, many years, I followed the advice of my doctors.  I followed the conventional path.  I was still following the advice of the medical professionals who told me that food had nothing to do with my illness when I met a man that changed my life.  He was a friend of my brother’s, studying to be a Psychologist at the same graduate school I went to.   

You’ve met my head shrinking, coffee drinking, hubby on the podcast. He’s made an appearance or two.

We met on a skydiving trip—something we’d probably only do in our younger years. After that, we became inseparable.  

He’s been there through all of my Crohn’s hell and my bowel resections. I remember vividly when he held me in his arms and let me cry until I couldn’t cry anymore after I told him 4 ½ feet of my small intestine had become the size of a string of spaghetti and doctors were going to operate to take that part out.   

He was there again for my next bowel surgery when 4 ½ feet was removed again. But the best thing he ever did for me was to stand by me and our marriage when I broke down, thinking we’d never be able to have children.

 IBD and Infertility: Can I have a baby please? 

Within a year of getting married, Bill and I started trying to get pregnant.  With my Crohn’s history, I was worried it might be a struggle to get pregnant and I was right.  After two years of trying to conceive, we still weren’t pregnant.  We tried temperature readings, fertility drugs, scheduling sex at certain times of the month…. it was really stressful!   

I remember saying to Bill, “I don’t know if we’ll ever be able to have a child.  If you want out of our marriage, I will understand.”  Bill, my rock, said he was with me for the long haul.  He wasn’t leaving just because we couldn’t have children.   

Of course, we thought about adoption. We didn’t care how we became parents. We were seriously considering it while we also going through fertility treatments. I remember one idiot fertility specialist we met with—and trust me, I don’t use that word often or lightly and I understand how derogatory it is, but this doctor deserves it. He told me that the reason I wasn’t pregnant was because besides having Crohn’s I must also have anorexia because I’m so thin. He told me to get help for my anorexia and then I would be able to get pregnant. I didn’t have anorexia! In the words of Hermione in the first Harry Potter series, “What an idiot.” He truly didn’t get Crohn’s or colitis at all.

Just when I was at my lowest point, hormones raging from fertility drugs, we conceived our first child through a fertility procedure called IUI. I remember getting the phone call from the doctor telling us we were pregnant and literally dropping to my knees in pure joy and astonishment.  After such a dark times, what a breakthrough! And to my surprise getting pregnant my first time set off my fertility juices because I got pregnant two more times after that. We have three beautiful boys now—two of them grown men– and I feel so blessed that they are a part of my life every day.  

Breakdown #3: years of infertility to the miracle of 3 kids. What a breakthrough that was! If you’re struggling to get pregnant, please don’t give up hope. I’m so grateful that I kept trying.

Breakdown to breakthrough #4

[36:01] Probably the biggest breakdown to breakthrough I had in my almost 35-year Crohn’s journey was going from looking at my illness from an approach of making no decisions and no moves on my own, looking to everyone else for answers, keeping the power and the knowledge outside of my control, which by the way got me nowhere. Not once in those 20 years did I ever feel well. Not one day. And the breakthrough that emerged from this breakdown was the biggest transformation and mindset shift of my life.

In 2007, our family move back to the states.  We had been living in England for 4 years while my husband was in the Air Force. He was getting out of the military, and we were settling in Maryland.

I wasn’t feeling well.   

I was a mom with 2 little ones, 17 months apart. I was running myself ragged. I was stressed.

The immunosuppressive drugs I was on wasn’t suppressing my Crohn’s symptoms, but it was suppressing my immune system so much that I was constantly fighting off one infection after another.   

I went to a new gastroenterologist who ordered a colonoscopy and endoscopy.   

When the tests were complete she gave me this news, “There’s nothing else I can do for you.  You’ve had so much of your small intestine taken out that you shouldn’t have more surgeries.  You should wait and hope for a small intestinal transplant.”  

Of course, medicine hasn’t advanced that far yet! 

I was devastated.   

I’ve done everything I was told to do for 20 years. I listened. I took all the medication, as prescribed. Endured pooping in a bucket, a rectal abscess, steroid rage and depression, and 2 bowel resections. How can you be telling me there’s nothing else I can do for you. It felt like the medical community had failed me. 

What the hell do I do now?   

In that moment the mantra my mom taught me 20 years earlier, back when I chose to go to college instead of climbing in bed and staying there was pounding in my head—-  

“The train of life is leaving the station… The train is leaving the station…”  

And then it hit me.  The medical community may have given up on me, but I still have hope.  

I raced home from that doctor’s appointment and ran to my basement where books and trinkets are packed high in boxes.  I search and search until I found Breaking the Vicious Cycle—the book Elaine Gottschall wrote about the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.   

Even though I had bought it and read it 5 years prior, at that time it just read like Greek to me. Gluten free, grain free, dry curd cottage cheese, almond flour, homemade yogurt? Know one was talking about gluten back then. I was not ready to hear it. But this time, right then and there, as I read it again, cover to cover, highlighting so much that all the pages looked bright yellow, taking notes in the margins… this time, for some reason, it made sense.   

 Somehow in that moment, the breakthrough just washed over me. I just knew that the words in this book were the step-by-step plan for my future. 

Gluten Free/Grain Free Eating Takes a Village 

I also knew that healing like this wouldn’t be easy. It wasn’t healing in a magic pill. It was hard work. It took time, but finally, after 20 years of hell, I knew it would be time well spent.

So even though I knew that this was the path I needed to take, I was still daunted.  It was a whole new way of eating for this Italian girl who lived on bread, pasta, cereal, and mashed potatoes. 

Even though the internet was not what it is today, I scoured and scoured until I found an SCD expert. A Health Coach who showed me the ropes and walked me step by step through the maze of SCD “legal” and “illegal”.   

I had never heard of a Health Coach before, but I jumped in with both feet with the clarity of a woman who knows she is on the right path for the first time in a long time, maybe the first time in her life. 

The SCD Diet: Game Changer 

So, I did the SCD intro diet and to be really honest with you, it kind of sucked, especially in the beginning.   

I ate like a baby.  Mashed bananas, homemade fermented yogurt, pear sauce, carrots cooked until they were mushy, chicken broth…   

Those first few days, I missed my old food and I felt like crap.   

But as the weeks went by, my crappy symptoms began to disappear.   

My stomach pain was gone, completely GONE.  My diarrhea began to improve. I couldn’t believe it

I hadn’t felt this good since my early teens! 

On the SCD, my initial plan was to try to go off all my meds in one year, but after just 6 months, I felt so good, that I just went for it.  

It’s been 13 years since then, and I’ve never regretted my SCD decision. Not once. The SCD saved my life.

Breakdown #4: From “there’s nothing else I can do for you” to an SCD breakthrough of healing proportions.

[37:53] You might be thinking that after that triumphant breakthrough, life with Crohn’s has been on easy street for this gal. Well for a while, I thought that was the case too. I’d been looking for a way out of all the pain, the medications, the uncertainty of what hellish symptom would appear next. SCD gave that to me. But what I learned in the last several years is that keeping my IBD under control isn’t just about diet, it’s about a lot more than that.

Breakdown to breakthrough #5, my final breakthrough so far. I hope that what I’m about to tell you can be a learning experience for you too. So you never have to go through my trials and tribulations.

For years, the SCD kept my IBD completely in remission. I ate huge salads for lunch every day. My once a day poops were so solid, that I experienced occasional constipation. My energy was through the roof, and I didn’t take it for granted. I savored every bit of a strawberry, of pumpkin seeds, of chrunky fibrous nuts.  

I thought, why isn’t everyone doing this? The SCD is the cure. After the most profound experience of my life, turning my IBD around with this diet, I became a Health Coach to serve others on their healing journey.

But about 5 years ago, a few things happened that brought me back to square one, and showed me that there isn’t just one path to healing. There’s several. About 5 years ago, I had to find my way past yet another breakdown so I could begin to rebuild again.

Within the course of a few months two illnesses struck me hard. First, I go the flu. Not a stomach bug, but the diagnosable flu. It wiped me out. I felt horrible. I laid in bed for a week, sometimes unable to pick my head up. I became severely dehydrated and required IV fluids. Thankfully, I did recover. Only a couple months later, I got plagued with food poisoning. E coli to be exact. It seemed like everything that was in my insides was coming out of both ends. I couldn’t get off the toilet for a several days. I think the flu I had had recently, had set up such gut dysbiosis that this food poisoning pushed it over the edge.

Looking back, I think if just one of these ailments had brought me down, I think I would have been able to fight it back. But the two of them, bam bam, together like that, it set up the stage for a lasting bacterial imbalance that I’m still fight to this day.

After months of trying to get back on track, I started working with a wonderfully gifted nutritionist, who diagnosed me with SIBO, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. It’s common to contract SIBO after bacterial upsets like a bout of food poisoning. And SIBO is just want it sound like, an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. When we think of the bacteria in the intestine, many people think that we have equal amounts of bacteria throughout the digestive track, but actually, most of the bacteria in a healthy individual lies in the colon—the large intestine. When too much bacteria travels to the small intestine, we can end up with SIBO. And it’s so much more common that many realize, especially for IBDer’s. Most mainstream doctors are not testing properly for SIBO and the symptoms are so similar to Crohn’s and colitis that we don’t realize we have it.  But it’s really important that we do figure it out because the treatment for SIBO is different than the treatment for IBD.

If you’re wondering about SIBO, if it might be a factor in your symptoms, and you want more info on symptoms, testing, and treatments, check out episode 30: You’re Doing Everything Right. How Come You’re IBD Isn’t Getting Better. It’s one of my most downloaded episodes and it’s got some great SIBO information. I’ll link to the episode in the show notes. Another great SIBO resource is Allison Siebecker. I’ll also leave a link to her SIBO work there as well. There’s a ton of good information on her website.

SIBO is a bit of a monster. You can treat it, but it usually takes a few treatment courses, and then in times of stress or bacterial imbalance, it can rear its ugly head again. SIBO is definitely something I continually work hard on to keep it in check in my own body.

I worked really hard to tackle SIBO and just as it was finally settling down for a long winter’s nap, I began struggling with small intestinal scar tissue from my old surgeries. The scar tissue was blocking my intestines, causing partial obstructions. Obstructions, maybe you have dealt with those in your own IBD life, are really the worst. Your abdomen fills up like a balloon, the pressure and pain on your belly is intense to say the least, and in my case, I just have to wait until the food passes through, which can be an excruciating few hours.

As annoying as all the physical aspects of illnesses, SIBO, and scar tissue can be, all of these physical setbacks began to take an emotional toll on me. When you’re doing everything right, you’re taking care of yourself, you’re eating right and you still get struck down with challenges you can’t control, it’s emotionally exhausting and infuriating. It was definitely a breakdown for me.

And unlike many of the IBD challenges I’ve been through in the past, the breakthrough with these latest setbacks wasn’t an instant a-ha or quick fix. This breakthrough has come to me in waves.

[45:15] Over the last few years, I’ve realized that staying well, isn’t just about one thing. It’s not just about finding a diet that works for you. It’s about what I like to call your wheel of wellness. To get through and thrive with IBD and the extra challenges it creates, I had to expand my healing circle. It doesn’t matter whether it’s another autoimmune disease that creeps up on you, which is really common for IBDer’s, or dealing with your IBD in the time of Covid, worrying about contracting the virus or whether or not to vaccinate– which of course creates stress that can impact our disease as well, or even other IBD related problems like SIBO, or candida, or scar tissue, or arthritis… we all have to use the abundance of resources at our disposal to create the breakthrough—to develop a fully functioning wheel of wellness.

For me, my wheel of wellness and the breakthrough that came from breakdown #5 means creating a wheel of wellness that centers around learning the ancient art of breathwork, dealing with my stress in a healthier way, focusing on ways to get more sleep, meditating, practicing yoga, trying energy modalities like reiki and craniosacral therapy, getting out of guilt mode when I need “ME” time, prioritizing what’s important in my life, journaling and feeling gratitude deeply every day, manifesting and visioning the change I want to see in myself. And of course, gut healing food too.

At their core, these are mindset and lifestyle practices and over the last few years, I’ve come to rely on these practices more and more. I find as I get older, I need them more and more in my life. And it’s been truly astounding just how powerful of a component the mind is when it comes to healing.

That’s what led me to starting this podcast. As I developed a larger wheel of wellness for myself, I wanted to share ideas with you that could help you develop your own wheel of wellness. If the last 5 years have taught me anything, it’s that everyone’s wheel of IBD wellness should look completely different, but I want to make sure you know all your options, so you can take that information and develop the healing plan that works for you.

These 5 breakdowns to breakthroughs that I’ve shared with you today are not the end of my journey. If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that, when it comes to IBD, the journey continues everyday. There’s always obstacles that we get in our way. There’s always going to be breakdowns.

Healing and growing and learning how to rise above, is about finding a work around, finding a road less traveling, finding a path that’s dedicated to your name only. That’s where your breakthroughs lie.

There are many others in the IBD space—practitioners of one sort or another who tell you “this is the way to healing—the one way.” They may tell you the only way to help your IBD is with medicine or the only way to help you IBD is without medicine, but what I’ve learned through all my years with Crohn’s, through all the breakdowns and breakthroughs I’ve been through, is that there is no one way to find remission, no one way for all of us to heal.

If I could pass down just one important message to you from all the time I’ve spent on my own healing journey and witnessing others healing journeys, it’s to keep searching for your way. When it comes to Inflammatory Bowel Disease, we are all different. What works for one isn’t what works for another. But we do have one thing in common, one healing tool that you and I both need. And that’s our own personal wheel of IBD wellness. That invisible wheel that’s a combination of all the healing modalities that serve you best.

Keep cultivating your wheel of wellness and keep supporting your right to have the biggest say in how you treat your IBD.  In the next 50 episodes of The Cheeky Podcast, I promise to keep giving you big ideas that have the power to grow your Wheel of IBD Wellness—in the way that works for you.

It’s been my honor and privilege to bring you 50 episodes of The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD. I can’t wait to see what the next 50 will bring.

Thanks for hearing my story today. I hope it brought some light and intention to the struggles you’re going through. You are in my heart dear one.

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

3 Things Moms Who Successfully Use Food to Heal Their IBD Do Differently

Are you about to get started on a special diet to help your IBD?

Maybe you’ve already tried to use food to help quiet your symptoms or get you out of a flare up and it just didn’t go the way you hoped. If you’re in either of these camps, you’re going to love hearing about the 3 things moms who successfully use food to heal their IBD do differently.

Let’s face it, one of the most life-changing things you can do to help with the bloating, the gas, the quick trips to the bathroom after you eat, the belly aches that can plague us, the acid reflux, the heartburn, the joint pain… you name it, is to find out what foods trigger your IBD and what foods help you feel better. If you want to be successful when you start or re-start any eating plan tailored for IBDer’s, this one’s for you

We talk about:

  • How to find a mentor who can help you when you need someone who’s been there, done that
  • How the big, bold, and slow plan takes you to the finish line first every time
  • Why all of the IBD healing diets aren’t all that different from one another (and how that’s OK)
  • Why making your food, everyone’s food is the key to your gut healthy diet staying power

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll have everything you need to start or restart your gut healing diet with the mindset for flare busting success today.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [09:21] How to find a mentor who can help you when you need someone who’s been there, done that
  • [13:58] The strong connection successful IBD moms have with Dorothy and Toto
  • [17:05] How the big, bold, and slow plan takes you to the finish line first every time
  • [18:13] Why all of the IBD healing diets you can choose from really aren’t all that different from one another (and how that’s OK)
  • [20:07] The role of food journaling on your “Eating for IBD” journey and how you can get my journaling system absolutely free
  • [25:15] How your gut healing diet will make your whole family healthier
  • [23:55] Why making your food, everyone’s food is the key to your healthy diet staying power
  • [33:19] A few insights from my own “Eating for IBD” healing journey (hint: perfectionists welcome)
  • [38:20] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

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Mentioned in This Episode

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Karyn’s Food-Mood-Poop Journaling System

Episode Transcript:

Are you about to get started on a special diet to help your IBD? Maybe you’ve already tried to use food to help quiet your symptoms or get you out of a flare up and it just didn’t go the way you hoped. If you’re in either of these camps, you’re going to love hearing about the 3 things moms who successfully use food to heal their IBD do differently.

Let’s face it, one of the most life-changing things you can do to help with the bloating, the gas, the quick trips to the bathroom after you eat, the belly aches that can plague us, the acid reflux, the heartburn, the joint pain… you name it, is to find out what foods trigger your IBD and what foods help you feel better. If you want to be successful when you start or re-start any eating plan tailored for IBDer’s, this one’s for you.

[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]

Hey there mama, Karyn Haley here with you on another episode of the cheeky podcast. I hope you have either already found some YOU time today or that you are going to later today. When we’re moms with IBD, we especially need to carve out that time. It’s crucial to our healing. Today, before taping this episode, I took a bubble bath with chamomile Epsom salt and Dr. Teals green tea and matcha foaming bath. No kids, door locked, 20 minutes of me time. Where can you find YOU time today? 20 might be too much when it’s last minute. So how about 5 minutes? I know you can find 5 minutes. Maybe listening to this podcast is your relaxation time. Trust me, it’s important for your health and healing. No guilt mama. You need it. You deserve it.

OK, now on with the show.

I’m excited about this one because normally, I give you an action plan, a step by step how-to for your Crohn’s or colitis, with but today is all about mindset. I know some might tune out when they hear that word—mindset. We want to think healing is all about our actions, but I gotta tell you, it’s not. Just because you have the knowledge it doesn’t mean you’ll be successful. Today is all about developing critical mindset skills every mama has the power to use. And trust me, these successful mom attributes aren’t complicated, they’re just often overlooked. But after this episode, you’re going to know the most important mindset hacks successful moms use to make sure their IBD healing diet works to reduce IBD symptoms and finally achieve lasting remission.

THE #1 THING SUCCESSFUL “EATING FOR IBD” MOMS DO DIFFERENTLY

Let’s dive in with #1 on our list of things successful moms do differently when it comes to IBD gut healing diets.

And I have to start this mindset shift with a question. Have you ever seen a chef create a recipe on the food network or on a youtube video and thought, that looks delish and easy, I could make that. You may even have all the ingredients, but your dish just didn’t turn out anywhere close to the chef’s version.

Or maybe you’re a DIY gal and you find a home improvement project to spruce up your bathroom or kitchen in 5 easy steps. “Bring your kitchen from drab to fab with thrift store finds in one weekend.” Your thrift store doesn’t have half of what the expert found in theirs. Instead of looking sheik, your modge podge vase look like it’s melting, the marble contact paper that was supposed to easily cover your microwave looks like an unfinished art project your 1st grader made, and your kitchen table staining results are so cringe worthy that you know you could never invite anyone over to eat with it looking like that.

For me, my moment of “I saw an expert to it so I can do it too” downfall is painting. I’ll see something like an old Bob Ross video and think, I can make happy little trees, only to get all the paint, get out the easel, and then decide my trees look more like abstract art.

We’ve all been there with ideas and projects that seem so simple, but without someone there with you, leading you by the hand, giving you step by step cues, someone you can ask questions to in the moment and give you direct feedback, your initial good intentions quickly turn to resentment and feelings of failure, and then just throwing in the towel and giving up.

Using food to heal your IBD works much the same way. You can read all about the diet you want to try, you can find recipes no problem—cookbooks, the internet… you can even make your own plan for success. And can you do it on your own? Of course you can, I know you can. But successful IBDer’s do it faster, and with a lot less bumps and stumbles in the road when they have a mentor by their side, someone who goes through the whole process with you.

A mentor offers you the option of:

Getting questions answered quickly without having to go down a 2-hour internet rabbit hole to find the answer.

Systems and frameworks for your specific diet

Recipes at your fingertips that are tailor-made for your sensitivities and tastes

Someone to send a quick text to when you’re at the grocery store wondering which almond milk to buy

Mentors have been where you are right now. They know the pitfalls and little known tricks that help you succeed quickly. And when it comes to finding IBD remission through a nasty flare up that’s taking you away from work, family, friends, things you love to do… everyday counts.

What does an eating for IBD mentor look like? The good news is that there isn’t just one type of person that can help you.

[09:21] I know it’s rare because we’re all searching for IBD buddies, because how many of us have people with Crohn’s or colitis right in our immediate circle, but maybe you have a friend or a family member who’s been there before. It does happen occasionally. They have Crohn’s or colitis and they’ve used food to help their symptoms too. If you have access to a mentor like that, I say always say start there. It’s not the perfect scenario because as you know, everyone’s IBD experience is different and what they can eat and what you eat, may not be the same. But it’s a good starting place and you already have a built-in connection with this person, which can be a great motivator.

Where else can you find a mentor to help you successfully use food to help your IBD symptoms?

Well, you know I’m a health coach and I am a mentor for people with IBD who use food as one of their healing tools. I’ve been where you are on my Crohn’s journey, over my years coaching I’ve had the pleasure of working with moms all over the world. I’m absolutely here as a mentor if you need me, you know how to get in touch, but there may also be a health coach who lives in your area. There are also health coaching directories you can find online. If you search for health coach directories, I’m sure you can find many and maybe even one who lives near you.

Other mentors that specialize in IBD and diet include nutritionists, dietitians… some nurses specialize in diet management. Practitioners like this have many different areas of expertise so just look for someone who specializes in IBD and the diet you are thinking of trying. For example, they specialize in IBD and eating gluten free or IBD and eating on the SCD.

With the world of healing being so global and virtual now, there’s no need to find a generalist. There’s lots of IBD specialists out there with the training you need for your particular case and needs.

Personally, on my IBD healing journey, I’ve worked with my own Health Coach and nutritionists along the way to help me find and maintain remission too. I’ve probably mentioned this before, but it was a health coach who was my initial mentor and the experience was so profound in transforming my life that that’ why I became a health coach too!

THE #2 THING SUCCESSFUL “EATING FOR IBD” MOMS DO DIFFERENTLY

Let’s talk about the 2nd mindset shift successful moms who use food to heal their IBD know. These bold, bright shining stars figure out a way to go big and slow at the same time.

At first, it might seem like those two philosophies, going big and slow, are diametrically opposed. But if you think about it for just a second, you’ll realize that they’re not. Moms who are serious about using food to help quiet their IBD symptoms make big bold plans and take big, bold leaps when it comes to finding the right IBD diet for them. They don’t make minor food tweaks.

[13:38] And when we’re talking about big bold plans in the eating for IBD department, we’re talking major diet shifts. The kind that, in all honesty, for a moment, upend your whole life, Dorothy and Toto in the tornado style upend, before the house gets set back down right where it was meant to be all along.

In practical terms, that means gut healing diets that change the way you grocery shop, possibly even the grocery stores you go to, diets that change everything you eat in your house and at a restaurant and at your friend’s house and when you travel. Big bold changes that challenge everything you knew before, but also offer life changing, amazing healing transformation on the other side.

What kind of diets are the “go big” diets?

We’re talking diets like the specific carbohydrate diet, the GAPS diet, the IBD-AID diet, the autoimmune Paleo diet. Each of these diets has subtle differences, but at their core these diets are about eating unprocessed whole food, removing gluten, removing lactose… they are very low in sugar, there’s a lot of home cooking involved and staying away from the pantry with boxed, canned, and packaged foods.

Like I said big, bold. Diets like these are not for the faint of heart. They are for mamas who are ready to try something completely new. Diets that take you on a beautifully life transforming journey. And it takes so much courage, trust in the process, and stamina to make these diets work for you.

[17:05] There’s so much stamina involved because when moms who are successful on IBD healing diets do it right, they don’t just go big, they also go slow. They don’t dive into the diet all at once hoping for a miracle. They introduced the foods on these eating plans tortoise slow. They understand that it took their body a long time to end at this place of pain and suffering, of inflammation and altered immune function and bacterial imbalance. A place where diarrhea, abdominal pain and bloody stool is the norm, not the exception. A place where you wake up every day afraid of leaving the house because you don’t know when or where you’ll need to find a bathroom. I know you know this place well, mama.

When you trust in the process of the diet and you have staying power on your side, you understand the need to go slow. Like I said, we didn’t end up in this place overnight and it takes time for the digestive system to repair and heal. Going super slow while going big with these diets at the same time takes extra courage, but it also gives your body the time it needs to heal and seal the gut. So that one day, eating fresh ripe strawberries, salads, apples… it’s your new normal.

 With successful gut healing diets, the tortoise wins the race every time.

Going big and going slow at the same time also means that you’re not diet hopping every few days. It means trusting in the process and sticking it out. I’m going to tell you something that many of the creators of these gut healing diets don’t want you to know. They don’t want me to tell you that there really isn’t that much difference between one of these “go big” diets over another. At their core, they’re all very similar and they all work to help bring your body back into balance. All of these diets like to tout that they’re the best in town. Only they work!

I’m here to bust that myth today mama. They all work. Sure, there’s tweaks here and there that everyone needs to make for their own individual body, but because they are so similar at their core, it doesn’t really matter which one of these big bowl diets you get started on. They all will help your Crohn’s or colitis to one degree or another.

When you pick your big, bold, IBD healing diet, stay the course. Go all in and make it work for you. Down the line, you can make those tweaks and changes that suit you best. But in the beginning, the best thing you can do is don’t overthink which one is best, because they all have great gut healing power.

Going big and bold and slow on a gut healing diet also means tracking how it’s going for you. That’s how we know which tweaks to make and when. Moms who are successful on IBD healing diets track their progress through food journaling. Journaling is the way we figure out those peppers we ate yesterday gave us heartburn, or the way we figure out that the lack of sleep we’ve had for the last two nights is making our colitis symptoms flare up, or the way we figure out that 24-hour fermented yogurt doesn’t work for us because it leads to arthritis in our joints. By the way, these are all things my clients recently found out by journaling through their own eating for IBD process.

It’s amazing the connections in the patterns you will see when you food journal through this life-changing, gut healing diet process. And there’s a lot of ways to journal. I know without a shadow of a doubt there’s one that will work for your personality and your lifestyle. I know I’ve mentioned it a couple times on different episodes, but I have a journaling system I created a few years back for my clients and you’re welcome to swipe it and try it out in your own life. If you go to karynhaley.com/journal you can get my food-mood-poop journaling system absolutely free. Journaling, it’s the key to big, bold and slow gut healing success when you’re eating for your IBD.

Going big bold and slow with your IBD healing diet has lots of components so let’s do a quick recap. Moms who are successful on their IBD eating plan go big. They choose diets that might have a big learning curve in the beginning but also hold big possibilities for life transforming healing. They don’t overthink their diet choice because they know that there’s something gut healing with every big, bold option. Moms who are successful on their IBD healing diet go tortoise slow. They don’t diet hop, they stay the course and let the diet work for them to truly repair from the inside out.

And through it all, moms who are successful on their IBD healing diet journal. They track their progress and they look for patterns in the way that the food they’re eating, the way that they’re feeling, and the way that they are sleeping affects their physical health—within the gut, but also through other part of the body too.

THE #3 THING SUCCESSFUL “EATING FOR IBD” MOMS DO DIFFERENTLY

[23:55] The third and last thing successful eating for IBD moms do is they integrate their diet with what the whole family eats. I see it happen over and over again in my practice when moms try to appease everyone in the family. They start out making their own food, something different for their spouse, and then on top of that, something else for the kids.

It’s a nightmare for mom and it never works.

Being a short order cook is not a sustainable model for your family and will always, always lead to burn out and ditching your IBD healing diet. You just can’t keep up with it. The time alone that you’re spending making different meals for everyone in your clan will keep you away from keeping the gut healing focus on you.

Do yourself a favor mama, be successful right from the get go and cook your food for everyone in the family. IBD healing food, and that means any of the diets I mentioned today, is healthy for everyone. Eating quality protein, eating lots of fruits and vegetables, eating whole foods and good quality fats is healthy for everyone.

And a really cool byproduct of cooking your food for everyone in your household is that everyone in the family gets healthier.

Now there’s just two caveats I want to point out that are important to mention here. Number one, if you are taking big bold steps and you are going tortoise slow, in the beginning of your diet you may not be eating exactly what your family eats because you need to, for example, peel and deseed your fruits and vegetables while your digestive lining is in repair mode. You might also be cooking your food longer in the beginning. With these beginning stages that are so absolutely crucial for your success, it’s really important to have help in the kitchen and emotional support from your family, in those beginning few weeks. But after the initial repair the flare phase of eating, when you progress to normal cook times and eating veggies with the skin on, get everyone on the same page when it comes to eating.

Getting in the habit of cooking like this (making your food everyone’s food) will preserve your sanity, lessen your stress, and in the long run it will help you find remission sooner. We know, the research shows us, that hectic schedules and chronic stress lead to physical ailments. Those physical ailments often show up in your gut. The place where we’re having problems already. One way to decrease your stress and time spent in the kitchen with a gut healing diet is to put everybody on the same page. Trust me mama, I’ve seen it many times before where people who do not do this fail to stay on a gut healing diet. They give up before they even put the time in to see results.

Make your food, everyone’s food.

I mentioned that there are two caveats for this point, and the second caveat is that even though you’re cooking the same food for everyone in the family, that doesn’t mean you can’t have an add-on for your kids and spouse. For example, if I’m eating grilled Hawaiian chicken with green beans, carrots, and some sliced mangos, that doesn’t mean I can’t add a side of basmati rice or quinoa or roasted sweet potatoes for the rest of the family. It’s much easier to add a simple side dish for your family than to make a completely different meal for you that adds on to the time you’re already spending in the kitchen. Unless you’re a chef and there’s nothing you love more than hanging out in the kitchen, adding a side dish to round out the family meal is the way to go.

So when it comes to meals, keep them super simple, don’t make separate meals for everyone because let me tell you what will end up happening. The person who will always get left of the equation is you. The person who won’t eat at all or who will grab for the mac & cheese you just made for the kids is you. Successful eating for IBD moms know that for this to work in a sustainable, healthy way for all, everyone in the house eats what you eat with the exception of adding a side dish or something else extra special like dessert so that they feel like they are eating with some sort of normalcy and in a way that’s tasty too.

THE “IN A GUTSHELL” RECAP

[30:42] Let’s do a quick recap of the 3 things moms who successfully use food to heal their IBD do differently.

#1 They get a mentor (a friend or family member whose been there, health coach, nutrition professional of some kind). Someone to show you the ropes and be your idea bouncer in real time because questions always come up.

#2 Successful moms go big and slow at the same time. Go big with your diet change—SCD, GAPS, Autoimmune Paleo, IBD-AID. And this, by no means downplays other smaller actions you can take like eat gluten or dairy free. These are great initial steps and I see them work, up to a point. If you want big bold, lasting remission, the transformational diets are the way to go. And when you choose an eating plan, always channel your inner tortoise. Take it slow. When you think you’re going slow go slower. Give your digestive system the time it needs heal and repair before you move on to eating quote/unquote “normal” foods again.

#3 Make your food everyone’s food. Your food is healthy, it’s healthy for everyone in the family. This may not work initially as you’re eating food that is well cooked and possibly without the skin or deseeded, but very soon you will be able to eat the food your family is eating. Have everyone on the same page when it comes to what’s for dinner. Add a side dish and you’ve got a meal that makes everyone happy (and healthy).

[33:19] Before we wrap up I’m want to leave you with just a couple quick hit bonus tips for a successful eating for your IBD journey. These are tips straight from my personal experience with success on the SCD.

Within the diet and you choose, be ready for lots of trial and error. We all know in the world of Crohn’s and colitis, there is no one size fits all magic pill or even diet plan. Within the diet you’ve chosen—the one you’re staying with long enough to see if it works, be open to seeing what works for you and what doesn’t. You’re going to make mistakes along the way. Lord knows I made lots and lots of unintentional mistakes at the beginning. Knowing that mistakes are part of the journey and accepting this upfront can be a huge weight off your shoulders. Your food-mood-poop journal will be your guide to help correct these missteps quickly so use it wisely to help you make adjustments, tweaks, and even to help you experiment and find out what works best for your body. Once I started used a journaling system in my early days of eating for IBD, it was a game changer.

Basically what I’m saying in a nutshell, going in with trial and error in mind, going in know there will be mistakes… is to try to avoid perfectionism at every turn. Ooohhh, I said that word! I know that is a hard ask for all of us with Crohn’s and colitis.

Recovering perfectionist Karyn raising her hand proud!

Those of us with IBD, we tend to be women who want to do everything we can perfect the first time, but I encourage you, as you begin a new gut healing diet, be OK with mistakes. Mistakes are what lead us to the path of great results. Successful eating for IBD ladies know this and use their mistakes as learning and growth opportunities.

Remember you can find my food-mood-poop journal by going to a karynhaley.com/journal. Feel free to use it as is or use it as a jumping off point to create your own journaling system. Maybe you love freehand journaling in a dedicated notebook, maybe you like to type notes on your phone or even selfie videos. Use the information from my journaling system, but find the method that works best for you.

Well, that’s a wrap on 3 things moms who are successful on IBD eating plans do differently. What do you think? Are you getting ready to go for it with eating for your IBD? DM me on Facebook and I’ll share with you 3 more awesome tips to help get you started on your best foot when it comes to making your gut healing diet work for you. On Facebook, I’m @theIBDhealthcoach.

Until we meet again, 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.

[38:20] 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.

{#herIBDstory} Ruthie Hanan Shares Her Journey Through Ostomy, J-Pouch Surgeries & the Healing Power of Meditation

I’ve got 4 words for you: Ostomy, J-pouch, Colitis, Warrior.

If you’ve got IBD, these 4 words that begin Ruthie Hanan’s journey (starting at the age of 15) will inspire and motivate you to keep moving forward, no matter what life throws at you.

Interviewing Ruthie for this episode of The Cheeky Podcast was an honor. I’ve been a fan of hers ever since I found her meditations on Insight Timer several months ago.

Ruthie’s ability to live every moment to its fullest reminds us to be present in what’s around us now, while we keep striving for better days ahead. Ruthie and I have a candid conversation about the mistakes doctors make and the consequences of decisions we make in our past that creep up in our present and how through it all, we can find joy and passion where we are right now.

We talk about:

  • What it was like for Ruthie to be a young model with a chronic illness in New York City
  • The often-untold information we don’t get when we’re thinking about an ostomy or a J-pouch
  • How to live in the present even when you’ve had past traumatic IBD experiences
  • The stages of chronic illness grief that aren’t really stages at all
  • Two beautiful and profound healing meditations with Ruthie as our guide

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll definitely want to check out Ruthie’s meditations on Insight Timer and her YouTube channel where she shares her passion for yoga and more of her IBD story.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [04:30] The first of two meditations with Ruthie as our guide
  • [22:41] What it was like to be a young model with a chronic illness in New York City
  • [26:47] Ruthie’s journey from ostomy to j-pouch
  • [34:02] What you don’t know, can hurt you when it comes to the j-pouch
  • [42:19] How to live in the present even when you’ve had past traumatic IBD experiences
  • [49:20] The role hypnotherapy can play in helping you deal with IBD
  • [53:41] The healing power of learning to say “both/and”
  • [1:05:32] Ruthie shares her second guided healing meditation with us
  • [1:13:17] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

Ruthie on Insight Timer

Ruthie’s YouTube Channel

Tanis Fishman

Jennifer Piercy

The Artist’s Way

Nightlight Astrology

Episode Transcript:

Karyn: Hey there dear one, you are going to love this episode today, I am so excited to bring it to you, is the first in a new segment I’m introducing on the podcast called #herIBDstory, and what a story our guest has… You’ve heard me mention her before on the podcast when I recommended her meditations which are free on Insight Timer, it’s Ruthie Hanan ulcerative colitis and J-pouch warrior, yoga instructor, meditation guide. She’s been through so much on her IBD journey, and she’s gonna inspire the hell out of you today. Having suffered from chronic illness since the age of 15, practicing healing arts has been the key to maintaining health and working for Ruthie. She integrates what she learns into her life and shares the findings with others, allowing for a lifestyle that focuses on physical, mental and spiritual health for herself and others. Ruthie’s goal is to share the tools and experiences that help her every day in hopes of inspiring and reminding others that we are all our own best healers. During the episode, Ruthie shares with us what it was like for being a young model in New York City with a chronic illness, she shares the true and often untold information that we need when we’re thinking about getting an ostomy or J-pouch surgery.

Ruthie and I also get into how living in the present has been hard for both of us, but how it’s really a must when you’ve had traumatic IBD experiences, we talk about how the stages of chronic illness grief aren’t really stages at all, but more feelings that can crop up at any time and Ruthie shares with us, two beautiful and profound healing meditations, which she doesn’t even have written down, as she says the words are just channeling through her. It’s a moving conversation, and it’s one that I hope you can listen to or re-listen to when you’re not driving or walking, at least for the beginning in the end, because I don’t want you to miss out on Ruthie’s powerful guided meditations. I hope you enjoy #herIBDstory, the interview with Ruthie Hanon.

[music]

Intro: You are listening to the cheeky podcast for moms with IBD, a safe space for moms with crumbs and colitis, connect explore powerful tools for healing and transform our lives to thrive in motherhood and in life. I’m your host, Karyn Hayley, IBD health coach, Integrative Wellness enthusiast and Mom, three outstanding kids. After having Crone disease for thirty 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]

[03:13] Karyn: I’m so incredibly honored to welcome our guest, Ruthie to the show, I feel like I know her because she’s been in my ear, she’s in my years most mornings, Ruthie, I’m gonna try not to fan-girl on you too much if it’s just kind of surreal to have you here on the podcast, but welcome, I’m just really happy to share your light in your story with our listeners today.

Ruthie: Thank you so much. I’m like, I’m incredibly honored that you feel that way, and I’m so happy to be here and talk to you, and I’m excited…

Karyn: One of the things that I mentioned in Ruthie’s bio is that she practices meditation and yoga, and she also shares that with all of us.

So if you’ve ever been on Insight Timer and you’ve searched for IBD meditations, Ruthie has probably come up. And that’s why she’s in my ear most mornings because I’m listening to her as I am meditating and visualizing the whole healing process for my IBD.

So one of the things that Ruthie and I talked about starting with is just to start this episode with a grounding meditation so that we can just set our intention for what we wanna experience today. Does that sound okay with you with…

Ruthie: Sounds perfect. Yeah. Awesome.

Karyn: I’m Gonna let you take it away. I’m gonna get comfortable.

RUTHIE TAKES US THROUGH A GUIDED MEDITATION

[04:30] Ruthie: Yeah, get comfy. Okay, so yeah, just getting into a comfortable position wherever you happen to be in the world right now, and just as you arrive, it’s always really nice to just bring everything from the physical to the more subtle, so first just checking in with your posture and how your body is physically feeling right now and can check out the relationship between your shoulders and your hips and feel that they’re in line with each other. Another really nice one is the pelvic floor and feeling that aligned with the back of your throat and just kind of clicks you into place a little bit, and if you’re in a space where you feel safe to do so at any point, you can allow the eyes to gently close and just marking your arrival to this practice with a full and deep cleansing breath, taking a slow intentional in down through the nose and just holding that for a moment when you are full, just experiencing fullness and whenever you need to slow, be letting that go and pushing a little bit more air out of you, even once you think you’re empty, to just truly empty yourself and then pausing and experiencing emptiness, and then allowing the next breath to come as needed.

And if that exaggerated breath felt really good for you, you’re welcome to do that a few more times if you’d like, and at any point you can release all guidance over the breath and feel yourself stepping back up into that role of the observer and witnessing your breath rather than controlling it or guiding it, just watching the Body breath itself and know that this feels completely impossible to do, and that is perfectly okay if that’s where you are today, and other days… This is very straight forward and simple. So just letting yourself be exactly where you are in this moment, and then just letting your awareness gently rest on the face and just notice if there’s any areas of unnecessary tension for most of us, we hold a lot of tension in our jaw and our eyebrows and forehead, simply by being aware of these areas, we soften into them, I’m just allowing for any expression to gently melt away as you start to bring some awareness into the ears. I was just fully relaxing the ears, this is another place I found that I often hold a lot of tension without realizing it, so just letting the ears be where they are and starting to welcome in all the sounds that exist around you…

Maybe you’re in a very quiet space, so maybe the sounds that are in your environment is just the humming of the lights, maybe sounds of nature outside or traffic, or maybe you’re in a little bit of a busier environment, maybe you’re driving… Maybe you are out in public somewhere or in a busy city, so practicing just hearing all the sounds that you hear as part of your environment and letting them be a reminder of this moment, remembering that… Sounds do not exist in the past or in the future. They are purely in this moment, so they can be used as an anchor to remind you of everything that’s happening right now as you listen, just starting to maybe feel a slight pulsing sensation of the years and noticing all the sounds outside of you as well as… Now, inside of you, feeling that relationship or hearing that relationship between your inside world and the outside world, maybe hearing the sound of your soft breath, maybe starting to hear a distant rhythm of your heart beat, and then gradually calling more awareness to come into your heart and just bringing awareness to your own personal rhythm, your own personal drum beat that’s playing in the background of your entire life, remembering the miracle that is your heart, and the fact that it is beating for you every moment you’ve been alive and will continue to do so.

Without any of your control, without any of you’re doing and remembering how this is a pure gift and miracle to you, and all the love that comes from that, all the love that your heart has come from, knowing that only love is what makes this possible. I’m just feeling beneath everything else, just feeling that core sensation of love, of compassion and gratitude of patients, of understanding that all exists in your heart, at your core of who you are, and then starting to trace the space between your heart and your head is you feel the tip of your head reach a little bit higher up and just clearing that channel of energy from your heart to your brain, and just feeling that energetic and physical connection from your heart to your brain, you remind yourself that all of this love and compassion and gratitude that exists in your heart, is being fed into your brain and therefore into all of your senses, so allowing yourself to see things through the lens of love, to hear things through love, to smell things and taste things, and speak things through love, and just be in the pure love, that is you and the world around you may be feeling that same heart, be also existing in the space between the eyebrows, and just trusting your ability to love, testing your ability to heal, trusting your ability to be the best of yourself that you can be…

If it feels like something you’d like to do, you can slowly bring your hands to a prayer position at heart center and just feeling that connection of your palms and fingers, and as you take a deep breath and you can feel yourself expanding fully and welcoming the fresh air into your body. And as you exhale, just allowing the head to gently bow, and as you bow to the source of energy you’ve come from whatever that is to you, owing to the constant source of inspiration and guidance around you, bowing to everyone in the space who’s completed this practice alongside you, and most importantly, vowing to yourself or listening for choosing to show up and for being you, and may this act continue to heal you through the rest of your days and nights, you bring the same sense of love and to everything that you do and to everyone that you see. Namaste.

[13:44] Karyn:  That was beautiful. See why I listened to her almost every day? It just gives me a sense of light and intention, so I really hope that it… I don’t know, when you’re doing a meditation, does it help you as well? How do you feel that?

Ruthie: Yeah, that’s really the main thing that kept me going with doing guided meditations was that I started to feel like it’s sort of like a sense of responsibility because you can’t really do an effective meditation if you are not doing it. Does that make sense? So I need to… And sometimes when I’m by myself, it’s a little bit harder for me to do it now because I’m like that it’s just me and I’m not… There’s no responsibility for me to stay in that space, but when I feel like I’m meeting others and bringing them in the place with me, it really is helpful for me to just stay and receive and speak and… Yeah.

Karyn: Yeah, that’s cool. I’m glad that you… Yeah, that… Yeah, I’m glad it does something for you too, as you’re the one giving us so much to do so…

That was wonderful. Like so many of us that come to helping people that have IBD, you come to this because of your own journey, you have ulcerative colitis, and I want our audience to hear your story because it is so powerful, and I think it will help so many who are going through some of the same things that you went through, and I’m curious if you can take us back in time, you can think about some of your first symptoms that you had that you know now were colitis, and it could be even before a doctor diagnosed you. What were some of the things that you are experiencing, what were some of your first early memories of ulcerative colitis playing a role in your life?

A STORY WE CAN ALL RELATE TO

[15:50] Ruthie: Yeah, so it goes back really far… Basically, as long as I can remember, I was in kindergarten when I was diagnosed as lactose intolerant, so that kind of started the whole like, Oh, I have a sensitive stomach. And I would always have a permanent pass to the nurse’s office throughout… Every grade in school, I spent a lot of time in the nurse’s office, we were always best friends, and I just survive off Pepto bismol and gasex and just… My mom had a sensitive stomach, so I just kinda thought it was somewhat normal, and then once I was all in through middle school, and then once I got to high school, I was in high school, which was scary and new, and it was intimidating, and I’ve always been an athlete, very competitive athlete, so I really care a lot about volleyball and I wanted to just be the best athlete possible and make the highest team and just do everything the most I could do it, and I started to really notice that before… Everything that was important in my life, I would not be able to get off the toilet and I would just be stuck on the toilet, I would just pretend I was playing games on my phone.

I just really played it off for a long time for a few months, and then finally… It was like a perfect storm. It was right before mid-terms. My freshman year, it was right before a big volleyball game that I knew I couldn’t miss a few hours before, and I was stuck on the toilet and my mom finally was just like, really… What’s going on? What’s happening? Are you okay? And I was like, Oh, I’ve been pooping blood for a few months, and I just never really said anything, I was just so embarrassed I was… I just figured it was a stomach bug and it would get better, and it just never got better, and it was really, really hard to accept that, it still is. Kinda hard to accept it. But yes, once I told her that she was like, Alright, you’re not going to the game. Or going to hospital, I went to the hospital, and that’s when I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. My uncle had the same thing, and he actually had his colon removed to… But then once his was removed, they removed his colon, they found out he had Crohn’s disease, so he had Crown’s disease in his colon, so once they removed the colon and it just spread to the other intestines.

So they told me about all of that when I was diagnosed. They told me about the J-pouch, the ostomy, that whole thing, and I was like, and I was like, I was 15, I was like, Why are you telling me that this does not apply to me, I’m fine. And I was just really angry at that doctor, and so my mom took me to a children’s hospital in Boston, ’cause I was like, I just couldn’t do it with the doctor I had, and they were a lot more gentle with the information they told me and we’re mindful about how it was affecting me. And that was really nice. So I tried everything I was on Lialda for a long time, then I tried Remicade, and I hated that I had all these weird skin tags that came up from Remicade, which is weird. I tried Symphony… Let’s see, methotrexate, Humara, but I basically tried… Everything that was available to me, and I was doing on the SCD diet. I’ve heard you talk about that, and I had some relief from that for sure, but I was also just so young and the thought of me having to eat like that the rest of my life was infuriating and I was just like, I’m not gonna do this, I need something else.

[19:50]: So I just kind of slowly started introducing things back into my diet, so I’ve still remained gluten-free and dairy-free, and those are the most important things, and I try to be mostly sugar-free, but that is incredibly difficult to do, but I know for a fact that sugar is the devil when it comes to my symptoms, so… Yeah, and then so I was 18. I wasn’t even 18 years. I graduated, I moved to New York. I was modeling at the time, I went to fashion school, and I was just like, Get me out of this town, I need to get out. I need to live my life. So I went to New York and I was there for a few, I think two months almost, and then it was mid-terms on my first semester of college and couldn’t get off the toilet once again, and I hadn’t really been able to eat anything other than white rice for over a month. So I was 100 pounds at 5’11”, and now it was… I didn’t even feel like it was weird, I just noticed that people were looking at me differently, and that was pretty weird ’cause I was like…

I was just like, I felt very disconnected from the world around me, and then my mom came to visit me and she saw me and was like, that’s it, we’re going to the hospital. So she took me back to Boston, and I ended up staying there for a month, and I was on IV steroids for about two weeks, and the inflammation ended up getting worse. So then they were like, We have to take it out. So then I had my first of the three step colectomy, I got my colon taken out, woke up with an ostomy bag, had the ostomy for six months, and that whole six months is pretty blurry for me, just ’cause… I felt really low, I was all excited ’cause I was with a good modeling agency at the time, and I was like, Oh, I’ll go back and I can do modeling jobs with my bag and can be like… Bringing ostomy back into the public eye, I was like this is awesome, it… And of course, I go to my agency and they’re like, No, you’re not ready, I’m not gonna put you out for anything when you’re like this, so I was like, I can’t even do a beauty stuff, and they were like, No, like, Just wait until…

Karyn: I definitely want to hear more about that, ’cause I know you mentioned modeling…Yeah, and you’re doing this with ulcerative colitis… Did you do it before you had the ostomy as well…

Ruthie: Yeah, I started when I was 15, around the same time I was diagnosed.

Karyn: What is that? I can’t imagine that world with ulcerative colitis. What is that like?

THE PITFALLS OF MODELING WITH A CHRONIC ILLNESS

[22:41] Ruthie: It was pretty bad. It’s pretty like everything that you hear about… It’s all true. It’s definitely changed, in recent years a little bit, but I don’t even think it’s changed that much, it’s just like, what’s acceptable has changed, so now they’re just holding you to a different standard, but they’re still holding you to a very strict standard, but yeah, they… I was told I was pear shaped when I was 15, and I was always told I had to lose inches around my hips, and I had to tone up or trim up, and I’ve always been tall and thin, and I think just once I heard that I was really like my whole world was kinda shattered and I just… I really saw myself differently, and then I noticed how whenever I was sick, I would lose weight, and I noticed when I lost weight, I would book more jobs. So I definitely think that the modeling industry or just being a part of it from such a young age contributed to how my disease accelerated and how it just got bad so fast because I was just destroying myself mentally ’cause I really didn’t think it mattered. I was just being very mean to myself all the time, and definitely is not good for your digestion at all.

Karyn: And are you at modeling jobs and having to sit on the toilet and having people to wait for you, that happens in lots of industries, but like any job you could have, if you have to take time off to go and use the bathroom…

Right, that’s just not acceptable at work, but I can imagine in a modeling job that would just be heightened.

Ruthie: I just wouldn’t eat, I wouldn’t eat for the whole thing before I shot, I wouldn’t eat the whole morning and it would be fine, but I was withering away, I was just… Not even a person

Karyn: So you were doing those things that you needed to do to not go to the bathroom, but then it was to your detriment because there’s no nutrients, you’re losing weight, things are just spiraling out of control, and so you get to a point where your doctor says, We’re gonna do this ostomy and J pouch. And what… They mentioned it to you earlier on… Right, but now this is what… How many years later that… You’re hearing this again?

Ruthie: Three years.

Karyn: So now you’re 18. 18, I remember when I was diagnosed with Crohn’s when I was 17, but I know I had it before that some of the time and my mother took me to a support group thinking that this is really gonna help me. And one of the first people that I met said to me, girlfriend, just do yourself a favor, get that ostomy… And just be done with that, right? Your whole life is gonna be better if you do that, and I asked my mother what that was, and she told me– she was a nurse, she told me… And I just remember thinking, What? No, just was I freaking out so much that I never went back to the support group, so now I’m imagining you, you’re 18 years old and they’re telling you this again, and you’ve gone through every medication you tried SCD, you’ve done all of the things. Right. And so I can’t imagine, number one, how you were feeling in that moment, I would love for you to talk us through that and then I would love to know…

Can you kind of talk us through that? I know you had three surgeries, what actually happens, because I know there’s people listening who are thinking, my doctor told that to me, I’m thinking That’s what’s down the road for me, but it seems so secretive, like doctors don’t really talk about what it is until you’re there and then you have to make up your mind really quickly… So what can you tell us about… What was that like for you to be at the end of your rope? And then can you talk us through what actually happens, what do these three surgeries entail.

THREE SURGERIES THAT CHANGE RUTHIE’S LIFE FOREVER

[26:47] Ruthie: Yeah, so when I first heard about the J-pouch thing, when I was first diagnosed, it was… I had the same reaction as you. Just like, No, no, no, there’s no way. It’s ever gonna happen to me. I will do anything to avoid that. But I think my inital action to it was so strong is because some part of me was like, that’s gonna happen to you. That’s gonna be your future. And I was like, no, no, no, I was just kinda fighting with myself for years, and then once I was in the hospital, it was kind of… And they told me that that’s what I need to happen. It was more like, it was a weird times of relief because I was like… One, I had a feeling that this was gonna happen. So then I was like, Okay, well, I guess I was right. I guess that was the reason I felt that way, this is gonna happen. And then also, I was so sick of going to the doctors and having them try new things and Oh, well, this new thing happened, that was an exhausting process for me, and I was just like, I want this dying organ out of my body.

Get it out. This is not helping me anyway, is hurting me so much, and I was under the impression is what the doctor said is no colon… no, colitis.

NO COLON, NO COLITIS???

Karyn: I think that’s what a lot of doctors say. Right, that’s what he said, yeah. I don’t have this problem anymore. If you get the procedure done.

Ruthie: Just like if you don’t have a colon, you can’t have colitis, and I was like, That makes sense. Cool, let’s do it. Yeah, but it…

Karyn: They actually think that I… I don’t think they’re malicious or something like… I think they actually believe that…

Ruthie: Yeah, but the thing is, is that pouchitis exists… I first time I got pouchitis, I was so angry ’cause I was just like, Come on, if I’m gonna have the exact same symptoms as a colitis flare-up, I would rather have my colon then have some pouch that’s now called pouchitis. I’m very lucky that I did that. I don’t have a lot of those, but that’s when my uncle always does, but he has at least a few every year, and he’s in his 60s, so it’s just crazy. So I wish they had told me about that. I wish they  been more real with me about my life is not gonna be fixed and it’s not gonna be perfect after this, because that’s really what I… That’s why I was dreaming up in my head, and that’s kind of the main reason why I was like, Yeah, let’s do this. I had the first surgery was really just fast because I was already in the hospital, I was already admitted, I’ve been there for three weeks, and then I had it and then I recovered for a week, and that process, just waking up with the ostomy bag is very strange, it was very surreal too, because leading up to it, I was watching a ton of YouTube videos of people with stoma bags and changing their bed, I was studying basically ’cause I’m like, this is a serious thing.

A part of my internal organs is gonna be on the outside of my body, and I have to take care of that, and that’s on me, so I just wanted to know as much as possible beforehand, and they have a stoma nurse that comes… Is always really helpful. They come in the hospital, and then I had a visiting nurse come, I think for the first few weeks that I had one just while I felt like I needed it to help me change the bag and to help me about the skin care and everything, ’cause that was a whole nightmare thing too, once I had the ostomy bag, life was… I was just recovering the whole time, basically, it was just… It was about six months that I had it, and then once I started to feel… It was a huge relief, I should say that, because going from… I had a bathroom log when I was in the hospital logging nine hours a day on the toilet, and that is not a life, and it’s impossible to live like in between that and sleep. There’s no life there. That’s all it was, it was that. And Netflix, and that’s everything.

And some sleep if I could. And so once I had the ostomy, it was beautiful. It was a beautiful, beautiful thing, and I understand why that person said that to you in the support group, ’cause there are a lot of people who get the bag and they never wanna go back. They’re like, This is perfect. This is amazing and great. I, over time, I didn’t feel that way, but when I first got it, it was just such a relief to not have to run to the bathroom every two seconds, ’cause my whole life was just doing something… Running to the bathroom, doing something, running to the bathroom and just constant every day all day. And to not have to do that, I was like, the possibilities are endless. I can do whatever I want. I’m from being in

Karyn: I’m free.

Ruthie: Yes, exactly. Definitely freedom, it was a really great thing. But I had so many issues with the skin, the bag, it would leak onto my skin, and then I’d get these really painful rashes of the skin being basically raw, and I hated that, and a few times in the middle of the night, I would wake up and the bag exploded, so I was just covered in my own poop, and that was like… I never want that to happen to anyone, but it stunk and yeah, just things like that, and just the fact that I felt so vulnerable and just the fact that someone… If someone could come and just grab my stomach and not even know that it’s there, and then everything’s out and my insides are exposed to the world and just… That was really scary and anxiety-producing for me, so I definitely wanted the reversal and the second surgery was about six months after the first, and It was three months after the first. And then they kept the ostomy bag and they just constructed the J-pouch, so the J-pouch is made out of your small intestine, so there’s nothing like artificial inside me, and it works as a colon is just smaller.

Karyn: So they constructed the J-pouch and I still had the stoma bag and then recovered from that surgery, that one was fine, it kinda just felt like the first recovery, it felt better than the first recovery ’cause I didn’t have a big incision, so then three months after that for maybe four months after that, so some amount of time after that, I had the reversal, so they wanna give your J-pouch, like some time to just get adjusted to being in your body before it has to work and do everything

[34:02] Ruthie: And they reconnected the end of the small intestine into the j-pouch… So yeah, they reconnected everything, they put it back inside me, and then I was working, and the one thing that nobody warned me about that I really wish someone warned me about was the diaper rash, ’cause when you don’t poop out of your butt for six months, and then you do it again. It’s not fun. It’s like you’re a new born baby, and that lasted way longer than I expected…. A few months. Yeah, it was intense, but I found a lot of good products. Well, having a bidet is really important, and having calmaceptine was really nice. It’s like a more minty stuff that you put on and yeah, there’s things you can do that make it a little better, but it’s intense for sure.

WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW CAN HURT YOU

Karyn: One of the things that… Well, I hear this from every single client that I work with, they’ll tell me… My doctor never told me this, my doctor never told me that… They just don’t know. And you mentioned the patios, you mentioned the pain of now having to re-train to go to the bathroom… Right. Or is there anything else that you think would be helpful for people to know? This is what your doctor is not telling you, This is what’s gonna be on after… The thing that I hear most about is from patients… Yeah, but is there anything else that you feel like your doctor’s just not telling you this…

Ruthie: Yeah, well, so I’ve had a total of six surgeries, now I had those initial three, and then I’ve had three additional because of bowel obstructions, because when you have any sort of abdominal surgery, you’re left with a lot of scar tissue, which I was not told about beforehand, and that scar tissue can cause so many issues and such as bowel obstructions, and I’ve had three different bowel obstructions, and it’s just like where you feel like you’re pregnant, nothing will pass through you at all, and just the worst pain and then the only way to clear it is to put an NG tube in your nose, so it’s like a vacuum that they stick up your nose and it goes down your throat and vacuums everything out the worst for 24 hours too. It’s ridiculous or longer. So yeah, that was something that nobody warned me about, and just the fact of having any sort of surgery on your stomach, it causes some sort of trauma and some sort of scar tissue, and those are the things that… They just have all these others, there’s just way more to it than just like no ulcerative colitis and that’s what really makes me upset to think about because I’m just like…

I just wanted someone to sit down with me and tell me every single thing that could happen if I had the surgery and everything that couldn’t happen, because… Even if I knew all of these things, I probably would have still done it. It would have been way nicer to know beforehand that this was a possibility rather than feeling like I was blind-sided, so… Yeah, exactly. That’s a big one.

Karyn: Yeah, I really want doctors to do a better job with this.

Ruthie: Yeah.

Karyn: I really don’t like hearing from people who have had it down there, they tell, everything’s gonna be fine. It’s just gonna be fine. No problem.

Ruthie: Just be real with me. Tell me it’s not gonna be fine. I would rather they just tell me the truth, ’cause in a lot of ways, it’s gonna be better…

Karyn: Right. Yet then there’s a lot that comes with it as well. so I have had… Not my colon, but I’ve had the removal of my small intestine and not the whole thing, but almost 10 feet of it, a really big chunk that has really affected me, and it happened when I was young too. And so I haven’t had an IBD surgery in 18 years, but the complications that I’ve now had from it, they said We’re gonna take your disease out now with Crohn’s, they don’t promise you that you’re gonna be healed because Crohn’s doesn’t usually work that way. It will usually come back and they did tell me to their credit, they told me it will probably come back and it did, so I had the first surgery with four and a half feet to have the second surgery with five feet that they took out, so now it’s almost 10 feet, it’s been 18 years and the scar tissue has now built up, so I have challenges with food passing through because of the scar tissue, and so I always think to myself, it would have been nice if…

They would have told me that, but I can’t go back in time. And so I try to live my life not feeling sorry for myself about the past and not feeling like what is my future gonna be like because I’ve had these surgeries in the scar tissue, it just keeps getting worse and worse. So for you, I would love to know, how do you sTay in the present, how do you not think about what was or what could have been, and how do you not think about… What could happen in the future? How do you stay present?

[39:18] Ruthie: Yeah. Well, I definitely do. I definitely do think about the past and the future, and I definitely have long periods of time, particularly after surgeries and unexpected surgeries, ’cause I had two unexpected surgeries in 2020, and I just really thought I was over everything, and that really messed me up for some time because I was just very afraid that like, Oh, what’s the point of doing anything if I’m just gonna have another surgery tomorrow, ’cause I felt fine beforehand, and then just one day I felt really sick, went to the hospital, wake up and out of surgery, I…

Karyn: Right, that’s how obstructions can work. You’re fine, and the next day you’re not.

Ruthie: And that’s terrifying.

IS IT POSSIBLE TO NOT LIVE IN FEAR WHEN THE WORST HAS HAPPENED TO YOU?

Karyn: So now you live in this constant state of when is that going to happen again, at least that’s what I’m doing.

Ruthie: Yeah, so what I do to help me with that stuff is… Well, first of all, I notice that I’m doing it because I think for a long time, you don’t even notice that you’re doing it ’cause you’re just like, This is the only way to think, there’s no other way to be like, This is real. ’cause it is a real thing, and you have to validate that that is actually a possibility, it could happen, and I think that’s what I was struggling with for a long time because I was just like… ’cause the fears are rational, they’re not out of the blue, it’s based on history, so you have to give yourself a break because you are afraid for good reason that it happened and it could happen again. So it’s like remembering that. And at the same time, I try to remind myself that if that does happen, what am I gonna do today that is going to just make me feel good and make me feel happy because yeah, it is a possibility I could be in the hospital tomorrow and say, there for a week. So how am I gonna live my life today and take advantage of the fact that I’m not in the hospital and then I’m not sick, because you can…

It’s such a such a flip though, because you can really easily just be like, there’s no point in doing anything if I’m gonna be in the hospital tomorrow, or you could flip it to be like, Well, if I’m gonna be the hospital more, I better do all the things today, ’cause I feel great today. And that is where I try to say, But you have to be… You have to be really, really kind to yourself when you slip into the other way, because it’s something my therapist told me that was really helpful, is that just about self-compassion and how our brains think that if we’re really hard on ourselves about feeling a certain way or doing something that… That’ll change the way that we do it. So it’s like if I’m constantly thinking about how I’m scared, I’m gonna be in the hospital, but then I tell myself, No, stop. Stop thinking like that, because you have to live your life, you have to be happy today, well, if you come at it from that hard perspective, it’s gonna keep you stuck in the cycle, so the only way to come out of it is by validating why you are stuck in the cycle.

And just imagine if your best friend or your daughter was going through the same thing, and how would you speak to them if they were going through it like it’s not their fault that they are scared because history is scary and the future is scary, but right now, everything is okay, so we can work through the things we felt in the past, we can work through the things or kind of plan mentally plan for things happening in the future, ’cause there’s definitely value in that, or just being like, Okay, well, if I get check when I’m out here with these people, what will I do and just kinda… It gives me a sense of peace just knowing that I’ve already played through this in my mind, so if it happens, I’m good, and then I don’t have to worry about it when I’m there, ’cause it’s like a dress rehearsal most… But I know that might not be helpful for everyone, so just kind of like a note.

Karyn: That’s hugely helpful, actually. Yeah, so we try to stay in the present. We try to live in the moment and enjoy it because we don’t know what the future is gonna hold, but at the same time, not feeling guilty or berating ourselves because we’ve planned for the future, or because one day we got stuck in the past, right. When the…

Ruthie: You can be in the present, and we think you can be presently planning for the future, and you can be presently working through the things you’ve lived in the past, is you just… Yeah, just being present with what you’re thinking about and not being like thinking about the past and feeling it like you’re fully there, it’s like watching it more like an observer, observing what happened in the past, what can you learn from what happened in the past? How can you apply that to what’s happening now, and how can you apply those lessons to what could happen in the future.

Karyn: A much healthier way to go about… Yeah, but I also, I tell my clients and I try to be this way with myself, like some days I’m just gonna have a bad day and I’m gonna cry. And that’s okay.

Ruthie: And you should do that. Everyone should do this exactly.

Karyn: If I don’t want anybody to live there, I would never wanna live in that place, but some days you need to do that, and I think oftentimes, as women, we feel like we’re just not strong, if we indulge in that it… And that’s even just a really horrible way to say it, indulge, it’s not indulging in a US being in that state, but we’re told, Well, no, you’re just… You can’t… So I encourage people to be there, what you’ve gone through is a really challenging thing, what we go through every day with IBD is really challenging, and so we just need to allow ourselves to be where we’re at…

Rutie: And every storm runs out of rain, so

Karyn: I love that, that’s the… Exactly, yeah, I kind of say it a little bit differently, but it… Same sentiment, I say, This is your now, if not your future, this is your now, it’s not your future. It doesn’t have to be your future.  now, so yeah, it’s like there’s the storm, but it’s gonna run out eventually that…

Karyn: One of the things that I really think that people don’t give enough thought to is the idea of surgeries like this with having an ostomy and having a j-pouch is that just going through all of the steps that you go through, it’s a loss and it’s a trauma, and oftentimes we think of it as, I don’t know, just a medical procedure, but actually there’s a loss in a trauma there, and so you might think that it’s this grief process and then you’ll just go through those… Do you know Elizabeth Keubler Ross, the stages of grief?She created the stages of grief, Denial, anger, resentment, acceptance… I don’t know, there’s another one in there that I’m not thinking of, but… So she created these stages of grief, and so people tell us that this is how you go through it, right, you’ll go through denial, then you’ll go through anger, but what I find is that, at least for me, and I would guess for stone and J pouch, people as well, it doesn’t actually work in the circular way…

Let go way. A circle doesn’t matter. So sometimes some days you might feel acceptance and then other days you might be back in denial and then… Right, do you find that for you as well, that you’re kind of all over the place with the emotions…

CHRONIC ILLNESS GRIEF: THE UNSTAGE PROCESS

Ruthie: Absolutely, and I think that a lot of the books I’ve read about ’cause… Yeah, you’re absolutely right. It’s, we’re morning a loss, we’ve lost an organ or we’ve lost a chunk of ourselves, so you have to… It’s a morning process, and you have to grieve that loss and accept where you’re currently at, and the organs that are here inside of you and are working and not taking those for granted either, but absolutely. Some days I will feel on top of the world, I’ve accepted. I am like, I did it, I had a tear. Exactly, and it’s like you feel like you kind of made it, but then the next day it’s like, can’t get off the couch and I’m crying all day, so it’s definitely… And I think a lot of the grief process of it and everything, if you read it exactly as it is and take it in exactly as it is, it can be kind of harmful just because you don’t think you’re doing it right, if you’re just like, Oh well, that’s not what my process has been, and it’s like every single person’s grieving process is going to be different, and it’s a very personal process, and it’s not something anyone can really tell you either, it’s like you can listen to what has worked for other people, but ultimately, it’s, you’re different and you have to do what’s right for you.

So if someone suggests something that like, Oh, you should… You’re this far away from when it happened, so you should be in this stage, it’s like… That is going… It’s like a record scratch. It’s like if your reality something, but then you’re hearing from someone else that your reality should be something different, then you’re just like, Wait, well, if I should be there then, but it’s like, No, just let herself be exactly where you are and take in what other people say, and things that resonate with you and makes sense and feel helpful, but take everything with a grain of salt because you… I’ve got really caught in comparing my healing to other people, healing, and it’s never gonna be the same, so there’s no real point in doing it.

[49:20] Karyn: When you’re feeling that way and you’re in your own pain, one of the things that you mentioned is therapy, and I think that that can be so helpful, I feel like somewhere… Maybe it was on one of your YouTube videos that I saw that you’ve done hypnotherapy.

THE POWER OF THERAPY FOR PHYSICAL ILLNESS

Ruthie: Yeah.

Karyn: Well, when I was 17 and just diagnosed, my mother took me to a therapist who did hypnotherapy, and I found that to be amazingly beneficial. Have you had the same experience?

Ruthie: Yeah, I think it’s beautiful. I think it’s way different than what I had in my head as to what hypnotherapy would be, ’cause I feel like we all have this first vision of hypnotherapy as being…

Karyn: Oh, like a little worse, the hypnotherapist on the stage who making them for

Like a dog and like a chicken…

Ruthie: Exactly, and that’s what kind of blew my mind when I first started doing God hypnosis was because I was like, This is what I’ve been doing, this is… It’s not the person who’s the therapist is not doing anything for you. They are guiding you through the process, that you can do it for yourself. And I think that’s something like in my head before I was like, Well, what if they do something to me that’s scary or harmful or too much, but it’s like you have all of the power, they’re just suggesting things to you, and if it feels good, you go with it, if it doesn’t, then leave it. So yeah, I really helpful.

[50:55] Karyn: And so when we think about therapy and hypnosis, that kinda leads me into thinking about meditation… Right, and… And also yoga. So how did those practices develop for you?

RUTHIE HELPS HER UC WITH MEDITATION AND YOGA

Ruthie: So yoga, something I kind of always been in my life in the background, my mom always had these yo good tapes I would do with her when I was little, but I never really… It just seemed kind of like another explore, another work at thing to do, so I didn’t really think of it as being anything deeper or more than just the physical postures, the asanas of yoga. I think I was 20, 21 maybe. It was in 2018, I decided to really go for it with yoga and I went through a really bad break-up, and I was just getting off of, or I was trying to get off of the biologics I was on, but I knew I had to make serious lifestyle changes, if I wanted to do that successfully, so I was like, I’m just gonna force… Or my sister was the one actually who said… She’s like, something crazy awesome happened. Did you force yourself to do yoga every single day, even when you don’t feel like it? So I was like, Okay, I’ll try it for a month. And I just never really stopped and I just… I did it every single day, just for you too, and just it some amount of yoga every day and really, really loved it, and I could see how it would just get better and better, ’cause it just…

In a month I did it. It was just getting better. So then I booked a trip for my yoga teacher training and went to Costa Rica for a month in April of 2018, and did a 200-hour teacher training, which was amazing. It was just like everything. It sounds like it was beautiful. Perfect. We did so much yoga, we were vegan for the month, which was nice, it was cool for me to try vegan, but my body definitely was craving red meat by the end of it,

Karyn: and I think everyone is totally individual, for some being vegan works for them, And then some, They need meat. It’s all individual.

Ruthie: Exactly, but it was nice that I tried, ’cause I probably would not have ever tried if I wasn’t forced to, so that was really great, and I came back from that trip and I felt like… Well, that was the first time I ever heard or I ever understood why people say food is fuel, ’cause that’s never been something that’s ever made sense to me my entire life, I’ve always just been like, You eat what’s gonna hurt you the least, and that’s just what you eat, I never thought of it as something as being energetic for you, if I wanted to have energy, I wouldn’t eat and then I would be like, I have a lot of energy, and that’s just what my life has always been, but when I went there, I would eat a meal that was grown on the land we were living on, and I would be like, so much energy, I felt like I tried to stress or something, but better, it was just like… Yeah, and I was like, I didn’t even know it was possible for people to feel like this, so I felt like I got a glimpse of what normal people feel like a normal people feel like every day healthy people.

So I was like, I don’t ever wanna lose this, how do I just keep this all the time. And yeah, it was really, really great. And I just continued to do yoga when I got back to the training, but then… And I was really into the whole mindset thing, and I was… Got a rake certification, and then I started to hear about the solar plexus and how your solar plex is easier, so forth and self-confident, so then I was like, Oh, that I… Yeah, I was like, that’s why I got sick was because I hated myself so much, and so then I was just really kind of equating everything, it’s like, Oh, it’s all been my fault now that I know… Now I can control it and now I won’t ever get sick in again, and I was there, I was like, This is it, I figured it out. And then of course, I got sick again and everything just shattered again, but we came to a way… It was kind of like the pendulum, I was all the way over here, I was way over here, and when I got to take again, it forced me to come to the Center and just be like, Okay, it’s not…

There’s not one answer for everything, there’s always gonna be… It’s a both/and thing. That’s another thing my therapist taught me, right? Yeah, because I always say but… And then every time I catch myself now and I’m like, No, it’s Both/and…love that. Yeah, western medicine and eastern medicine. We can have both of them. Exactly, I was really kind of shunning Western medicine for a long time, and just like… I have those periods too, but I kinda came to a center ground, I’m like, No, I’m alive because of it. So exactly.

Karyn: We can’t just count any of it, we have to use what helps us. Exactly. And so, when did the meditation come in?

Ruthie: So meditation was the main thing that I gravitated toward from the yoga teacher training, and we did these inner child meditations and Archangel invitations and all these kind of journey, a beautiful ones, and I just… It made so much sense to me. I just, I can’t even really explain it. It was just like, Oh yeah, I know exactly how to do this. It was just like, it felt like exactly what I needed to do, and it was… I never felt like a challenge for me at all to do guided cations, it was just like… It comes very, very naturally. So then when I got back from that teacher training, I found Insight Timer from my teachers there, and Tanis Fishman is an amazing teacher on inside time or a Jennifer Piercy. I love their style of speaking and just how inviting it is and not… ’cause there are a lot of teachers, everyone needs something different to click into that space, so I always say to people who are starting, I try as many different teachers as possible in her area, many times

Karyn: There’s no shortage. I’m always recommending Insight Timer. I love it, and I love that you gave couple of more names ’cause I’m gonna go check them out now…

Ruthie: Yeah, yeah. They’re amazing, amazing teachers. And a lot of what I say is  middle nuggets from what I picked from there were a lot of yoga needs are… Have you tried Yoga Nidra?

Karyn: Yes, I have.

Ruthie: Yep, that’s beautiful. Like a yogic sleep. So I tried all that stuff. I was like, This is amazing. And I just started looking, I’m like, I want something that I can listen to when I’m on the toilet, and I can’t go to the bathroom. And like, I want something, it’s for that, and I started looking and I couldn’t find anything, or maybe there was a few but didn’t really resonate or something, so then I was like, Alright, well, I’m just gonna make my own. So I just wrote it out, I recorded it, and then that was the first and only meditation I thought I was gonna do, and it’s like a 10-minute… It’s a solar plexus, the first one on my YouTube and on everything, and it has… I think it still has the most plays out of all of the ones I’ve done and see… Yeah, they really resonated with it, and I listen to it when I still and I need it, ’cause I really make a lot of the medications like for myself and for everyone else who feels like me…

Yeah, and then I just… Once I got positive feedback from all of that, I was just like, Why don’t I just do this… This is the perfect job for me. Like it’s a job that forces me to tune into myself and to be present, and it gives you that responsibility, ’cause I did love teaching yoga, but I was… I was teaching 10 classes a week at one point, and it was like, I can’t keep this up, this is too rigorous of a lifestyle, like meditations, so I’m like, I could do 10 to get… Meditation is easy in a week, probably more so… Yeah, so it was just… I really fell in love with it.

Karyn: I’m so glad that they’re there, you know, for a long time I was doing inside timer and I didn’t even look for any kind of digestive healing meditations ’cause I just figured they weren’t there, but when you actually go and look… It’s amazing, there’s a lot of really specific with whatever ailment you have, so I just let a timer, I highly encourage everybody to go there, so most of your work right now is on Insight Timer, and then we can also find you on YouTube. I know you have yoga on YouTube as well. Are those the main places where everybody can find your work…

Ruthie: Yeah, YouTube, Instagram, Insight, Timer, the usual stuff.

Karyn: Awesome, awesome.

Karyn: Well, I want to close out today, just like we started, I want to close out with another meditation so that we can leave today just feeling really wonderful about the day, with hope. Right, yeah, I would love for us to close out that way before we do that, do you have anything, any last nugget words of wisdom, anything you wanna just to leave us with?

THE POWER OF JOURNALING ON YOUR HEALING JOURNEY

[1:00:03] Ruthie: Yeah, I really think this is something that’s been very prevalent in my life lately, and I really just wanna say it as many people as possible. I really think that… It was actually two things. So I think that that journaling, I really think it’s necessary, and I don’t think you have to be a writer or call yourself a writer to do it, but any form of it too, even if it’s in the form of doodles or just scribbles on a paper, I think that documenting your life in some form, you can just pictures on your phone and reviewing that is so important too, ’cause nobody can really teach you what you can teach yourself, and by living your life and documenting parts of it in some form, your external world as well, as your internal world, things that happen in your life, and then how you feel about them and the thoughts that you’re having currently, I think doing that over time and reviewing that over time, you learn so much about yourself and it’s things that nobody else could ever tell you, because if you’re in our world, but we always forget, we forget the things are lessons we learned all the time, so just…

Even just this morning, I re-watched one of my old You Tube videos ’cause I realized I hadn’t watched any of them ever, and I was like, What did I even say on these… And I was like, Oh my God, I felt like I was learning things. Listening to myself, Fuck. I was like, This is crazy. ’cause you forget everything. So I think that is so, so helpful, especially with deep emotional stuff, which I feel like people with IBD often

Karyn: So no. True. And do you think that there’s the best time of day to do that, do you think we should plan in the morning to do it or in the evening to do it, or do you think it’s like just… When the mood strikes you. What do you think works best?

Ruthie: I think definitely when the mood strikes you, but I think when you are starting, that’s not gonna happen until you force yourself to do it, so I think starting first thing in the morning is really like Julia Cameron, I think it’s gonna be… Julie camera has a book, The Artist’s Way, and she talks about the morning pages, how every morning first in in the morning, write three pages, even if it’s just like, I don’t know what to write, This is dumb. I don’t wanna write right now, even if it’s just that for three pages, it’s kind of like a brain dump, like emptying the trash can on your computer or something, just getting it all out, so then you can start with a fresh mind.

Karyn: Yeah, I read that book a while ago, you know what I’m gonna link it in the show notes because everybody should read that book.

Ruthie: That is a must read for… Sure, read for sure.

Karyn: Okay, and I know you wanted to mention one more thing…

Ruthie: Yeah. Okay, the last thing is this really helpful analogy, I say it in a lot of my medications, but I kinda blew my mind when I first heard it. There’s this teacher. He teaches ancient astrology. It’s nightlight astrology on YouTube, but the teachers of course, like a YouTube course on The Hermetica, which is another great book, it’s the ancient teachings of Hermes, like the last wisdom of the Pharaohs. So what the symbolism of the moon and the sun, so the moon in ancestral represents the body like our physical bodies, and the sign represents our soul, so the moon does not have its own light, like our body is just matter. And we reflect the Moon reflects the light from the sun, from the sun. So our body is brought to life by our soul, and sometimes it’s a new moon, and sometimes the moon is totally in the dark, fund the soul, sometimes our body is totally in the dark and we feel like we’re in the trenches and nothing’s ever been good and nothing will ever be good again, and we’re just disconnected and lost feeling, and then sometimes we’re a full moon and sometimes we feel like…

Ruthie: Totally illuminated. Totally connected. Totally. Great. And with where we’re at, and then there’s all those phases of the moon in between, so it’s like you… Whenever you’re in one phase, you feel like That’s where you’re at, that’s where you’ve always been, it’s where you will always be, and there’s nothing that’s ever gonna change, but it always changes, and we always go through the cycles of the moon, just like the moon does, sometimes were partially illuminated, sometimes we’re partially in the dark and sometimes we’re full, sometimes we’re in the dark and just being whatever you’re at and not trying to change it, not trying to be a full moon when you’re in a new moon, just being the new moon, just being in that darkness and knowing that the next phase is right around the corner, so that’s very helpful.

Karyn: So I love that, so much wisdom from you, and you mentioned so many things that I’m gonna go through this before I make it go live, and I will put all the links in the show notes because I was… Wisdom from you. That’s amazing, all the things that you’ve learned in this short period of time, and I’ve gotten so much from your Insight Timer meditations, but who now you were just the fount of wisdom. That’s awesome. I love.

Ruthie: Thank you so much.

Karyn: Oh, it’s been such a joy. It’s such an honor for me to talk with you today. I’m just really grateful to you, so thank you for sharing the space with me, Ruthie, and thank you for sharing your light with everyone that’s listening.

Ruthie: Thank you so much for having me, this is awesome.

Karyn: Let’s close out with a meditation… Yeah. Okay.

ONE LAST MEDITATION WITH RUTHIE

[1:05:32] Ruthie: Yeah, I wanna do… We’re gonna do a stomach one too, so… Let’s do it. Okay, so just coming back to that comfortable position, if you’re sitting with your feet on the ground is really feeling your feet on the ground, closing the eyes if you feel safe to do so, and taking that same cleansing breath, full in Him, in full exhale. Just letting the crown of your head lift up, light we toward the ceiling and just feeling the length of your spine as you start to settle back into your body, just coming back to your heart, feeling once again that unique rhythm that your heart has… Remembering that connection that your heart has to your mind, to your senses, and now remembering the connection that heart has to your stomach, and just feeling all that love and… And that’s in the heart. And how that is directly connected, passing through the lungs and coming into all the organs in your Sumac. Now you can gently place your left hand on your hearts and your right hand on your belly, wherever it feels called to go is trusting where your hands naturally fall, and not just feeling this connection of your palms to your body, so feeling how your heart is beating into your hand, and also how your hand is beating back into your heart, feeling maybe the rise of your belly as you breathe in into your hand and the fall as you breathe out, or maybe even feeling a heartbeat in your stomach that’s pulsing into your hand in your right hand pulsing back into your stomach.

Now, just feeling the love from your heart, this enter into your hand naturally travel up the left arm, come into the left shoulder, across the collar bones, down the right arm, through the right wrist, into the right hand and into the belly, and just feeling the circuit that you’ve just created connecting your heart to your belly in two ways now, direct line through the inside of your body and your torso, and now from the outside, from your hands, through the hearts in your hands, and just allow your stomach to receive this healing from your own heart. Notice if there’s any resistance to it, I know that that is okay to trust that you will always receive what you are meant to receive when you are meant to receive it, just stepping out of your own way as you feel ready to receive and to heal… Whenever you feel ready to do so, you can slowly let your palms find each other now, feel all of that energy to settle within your stomach, let it be absorbed into the organs, into the cells of your body, and feeling this love just feeding into each palm. Now, as you take a deep and conscious breath and once again feeling yourself fill up, letting yourself fill up, and as you exhale, slowly letting the head bow once again, just bowing to the source you’ve come from, bowing to the inspiration and guidance around you, bowing to everyone in this space, who’s completed this alongside you, most importantly, bowing to yourself for listening for choosing to show up and just for being here.

May this practice continue to heal you through the rest of your days and nights, may you bring the same love and understanding into everything that you do into everyone that you see… No.

Karyn: Mmm… Thank you, Ruthie. Thank you.

Ruthie: Thank you, Karyn.

Karyn: That was something really special. Right. Mushy is definitely an inspiration to us all, if you wanna practice yoga with rule or you want to use her as a guide through your meditations, you can find her on YouTube and Insight Timer, she also is on Facebook and Instagram. I will go ahead and link to rothes website and YouTube channel in the show notes, definitely go check her out and thanks for joining us on the podcast today, and stay tuned for more her IBD story episodes as we continue to shed light on IBD women warriors in our circle, until we meet again. 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 take 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 It moms everywhere.

[1:13:17] Karyn: And if you feel called 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 St 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, ’cause if you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with all the ups and downs between players and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to my… The website, it’s Karyn Haley dot com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different, but my name with the Y, so it’s K-A-R-Y H-A-L-E-Y dot com, and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD Root Cause troubleshooting 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, hit of 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 amino 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, cause trouble shooting today at Carondelet 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 CV podcast for moms with it, either by me or my guest is not intended to diagnose, treat, 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 the 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.

The #1 Reason You Haven’t Busted That Flare-Up and What to Do Instead

Have you ever dived into one of the many gut healing diets out there, I’m talking head first, blazing a trail, only to scratch your head a few weeks later wondering why it didn’t work for you?

Or have you found a diet that works for many of your gut struggles, but there’s still lingering symptoms that never seem to clear up?

Or maybe you’re in the middle of a flare up right now.

It’s raging, but you’re so overwhelmed you don’t know where to start. It might feel right now like the world is caving in, but actually this is the best place to be– with all your options laying at your feet.

You just need some help getting clear on what those options are, and most importantly, where to start first.

If any of these scenario’s sound like you, dear one, you’re going to love this episode.

We’re talking about:

  • Hands down, your first go-to step when a flare-up is coming on
  • Why your seeing undigested food in the toilet
  • Your best bet to bring your bacterial imbalance, back into balance
  • The gentle detoxifier that helps you release toxins and bacterial build up in the body (no cleanse necessary)

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll have the tips you need to finally take confident steps on your gut healing journey. That nasty flare-up is going down.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [05:59] The most important part of any gut healing diet that’s missing
  • [09:58] Hands down, your first go-to step when a flare-up is coming on
  • [15:22] Why your seeing undigested food in the toilet
  • [19:37] Herbal teas that help your worst digestive symptoms (bloating, gas, abdominal pain, anxiety, restlessness, irritability, insomnia…)
  • [22:56] Your best bet to bring your bacterial imbalance, back into balance
  • [26:55] Are you sure you can’t eat eggs? Try these two things before you ditch this nutrient packed gut healer
  • [30:10] The gentle detoxifier that helps you release toxins and bacterial build up in the body (no cleanse necessary)
  • [35:56] The repair the flare tip you never saw coming (but you’re going to make a priority after you hear this)
  • [42:03] Repair the flare “do it like a mom” tips for success
  • [45:39] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

Your IBD Action Plan

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Episode Transcript:

Have you ever dived into one of the many gut healing diets out there, I’m talking head first, blazing a trail, only to scratch your head a few weeks later wondering why it didn’t work for you?

Or have you found a diet that works for many of your gut struggles, but there’s still lingering symptoms that never seem to clear up?

Or maybe you’re in the middle of a flare up right now. It’s raging, but you’re so overwhelmed you don’t know where to start. It might feel right now like the world is caving in, but actually this is the best place to be– with all your options laying at your feet. You just need some help getting clear on what those options are, and most importantly, where to start first.

If any of these scenario’s sound like you, dear one, you’re going to love this episode. If you can relate, this one’s for you.

[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]

[01:54] Hello my love, how are you feeling today? Is it another day in IBD paradise or are there some things you’re still working on? Let’s just take a deep breath together and set an intention that you will leave today’s episode with at least one nugget of wisdom you can take with you on your IBD healing journey. Now, just let it go. Whatever you need to hear today to help you through, it’s in your heart, it’s out there in the ethers, ready to take shape.

Today we’re talking about the #1 reason you haven’t busted that flare up and what to do instead.

We have to start this episode with a truth bomb. One that’s gonna give you an Amen, sister friend kind of feeling. And it goes like this: Even though you’ve most likely not heard from your doctor that the food you eat, along with the state of your mental and overall physical health will impact your IBD, you already know this to be true.

You know it in your heart. Am I right?

You probably wouldn’t be listening to this podcast if you didn’t have the urge to seek out something more… some other way to heal besides reaching for a pill or an infusion.

And even if you do take medications or infusions, you know that you’ll need less medicine or be able to come off your medication sooner if you make healthy choices when it comes to your gut.

FROM 6-MP TO SCD

That’s how it happened for me. I was moving along on 6-MP (it’s an immuosuppressive), and after 20 years of gut struggles that tore me apart, I was finally eating a diet that was controlling my symptoms and I finally said to myself, I don’t think I need this medication anymore. And you might be just at the start of a similar journey. You might have heard about this diet or that diet… And you may have heard that outside the world of Crohn’s and colitis, healthy people eat kale and sprouts and quinoa… berries and raw veggies.

And so many of us go for it. We think that if we just follow the foods listed as legal on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, or the Macrobiotic diet, or Paleo, or Whole 30, or if we eat 10 fruits and veggies a day, our abdominal pain will disappear, our diarrhea and bloody stools will clear up and we’ll begin to heal.

And listen, I know all of these kinds of options aren’t easy. The shear willpower it takes to stay on diets like these is beyond intense. When we put in extraordinary effort and we embrace eating extreme diets, we want the payoff to be worth it.

WHERE’S THE PAYOFF?

We’re working our butts off. We deserve the payoff to be worth it.

But the problem is, these diets don’t take into account the most important part of healing—the repair phase. And I’m not talking about the long-term repair we do over time as we begin to heal our gut. I’m taking about the pre-repair work that needs to take place before ANY healing can begin.

Over the years in my coaching practice, I kept seeing clients who came to me saying, “I tried Paleo or I tried the SCD and it didn’t work. I tried supplements, herbal remedies, elixirs, but they didn’t work.”

This really got me thinking. These kinds of gut supporting remedies should work. How come, in many cases, they aren’t.

What I found 99.9% of time is that instead of spending quality time in the repair phase—this almost pre-digestive healing phase, most people jumped right into their new healing regime. And especially when mamas with Crohn’s or colitis jumped right into an eating plan or a healing regime without proper time spent in repairing the flare first, they just weren’t successful in creating long-lasting healing—the kind that sustains remission.

THE PROBLEM WITH JUMPING OFF THE LEDGE

It’s like starting to exercise without warming up—it puts you at greater risk for injury. Your whole digestive system works in much the same way. We’ve been exercising our digestive system without warming it up for so long. Now, we have to set up a strong foundation before we can move on to lasting healing.

That, what I affectionately like to call the “repair the flare” foundational step is about setting your digestive system up with the proper tools to address the irritation in the digestive track, the inflammation that’s raging throughout the body. Starting to wake up the intestinal villi that have been lying flat and dormant for so long.

Once we take the necessary steps to ignite our body’s innate repair system, there’s no stopping us. But failing to at least light the pilot light in our digestive system, ends up in half results, repeated stops and starts, and this feeling that full remission is just not possible for you.

7 REPAIR THE FLARE TIPS TO HELP YOUR IBD

Let’s end this problem today—these failed attempts and starts and stops, half attempts– Because today, I’m sharing with you 7 repair the flare tips to ensure that when your IBD is raging, you know exactly what to do first, as soon as possible if you can, because the sooner you set these tips in motion when a flare starts, the better you’ll feel and the quicker you’ll start to calm your symptoms down and find remission.

We’ll start by going over the 7 tips. Then with all this information in hand, I’ll tell you how you can get started on them and do it like a mom, with no overwhelm or confusion involved.

Let’s get started.

TIP #1 GRANDMA WAS RIGHT!

[09:58] So tip #1, the best advice I’ll ever give you, is to get started with a high quality bone broth or meat stock right away—like the moment you realize this is a flare. It’s coming on, I know somethings not quite right. Just like with a cold how it’s best if we can get it with the first sniffle, bone broth works much the same way. The sooner you get on it the better.

Now maybe your mom or your grandmother, or great-grandmother made homemade stock before. Growing up Italian, my grandmother always had homemade chicken soup on hand. And it was delish. Little did I know it was also so healing for the gut at the time. Homemade stock, made with chicken or beef bones is full of nutrient rich collagen and gelatin. These two compounds are mother nature’s miracles for our digestive health.

If you don’t do any other tips you hear today, this is the one to do. The results can be huge. The gelatin (and yes, if you’re thinking jello gelatin, you’re on the right track—only less processed and less sugars and dyes—pure gelatin) in the meat stock comes from the skin, the bone marrow, and the tendons of the animal. The gelatin we get from our homemade stock sets the mucosal lining of the gut up for healing success by repairing the lining of the digestive system. Goodbye leaky gut, hello strong intestinal barrier that can now absorb and digest the nutrients we eat. We’re not going to get gut healing results from a chicken breast or a filet mignon. We need the gelatin rich joints and bones of the animal.

That gelatin in the broth also helps balance our stomach acid and digestive enzymes so we have less bloat, less gas, less acid reflux… talk about setting yourself up for repair the flare success!

The collagen in our homemade stock helps us lower inflammation levels, not just in our gut but throughout our whole body. So it’s working on IBD joint inflammation. It also works at lowering pain levels and easing muscle aches. And like gelatin, collagen helps improve leaky gut.

Winner, winner chicken dinner!

With stock and broth, I would try to get in as many cups a day as you can. 1 at a minimum to 5 cups a day, depending on the severity of your flare. Start with just a ½ a cup and ease into more each day. And I know there are some really great local restaurants and shops that sell homemade stock. I have a client in Argentina who gets her stock right around the corner from her house. I’ve had great homemade stock from Springbone Kitchen in NYC. So I know there are some high quality options you can buy. For the most part though, I prefer homemade where you control the ingredients and you know all about the cook time. Don’t be fooled by your regular grocery store “bone broth” options that come in a box or a can. They don’t have the gelatin we need for gut healing.

TIP #2: SAY GOODBYE TO KALE SALAD

[14:44] Let’s talk about tip #2: Skip health food.

Most people believe that “we are what we eat” but IBDer’s are not what they eat. We are what our body can digest and absorb. And in a flare, digesting and absorbing your food is tricky. Do you go to the bathroom and see undigested food in the toilet? This is a sign you’re not digesting and absorbing your food properly.

It’s time to back it up with everything you eat. I want you to eat nutrient packed vitamin and mineral rich fruits and veggies. But your body just can’t tolerate and assimilate these foods in their natural state right now. That doesn’t mean you can’t have strawberries, blueberries, carrots, green beans, spinach, and kale.

You can, you just can’t prepare them the way most people eat them.

Put those fibrous foods in a form YOU can digest.

Blend your fruit in a smoothie. Make a blueberry compote to drizzle on your favorite foods. If compote sounds like a fancy food, it’s not.  It’s actually so ridiculously easy to make. Making your berries and other fruit in this way is all the gut healing nutrients without the trouble of the food not being able to make its way through your digestive system. Now, when it comes to fruit, I’m not saying eat fruit all day long because too much fruit is definitely a case of getting too much of a good thing. But a couple servings of berries in a digestible form every day, that is the way to repair the flare.

Veggies can be puréed too. My favorite way to get all my vegetables in when I’m in a flare is by putting them in a soup. I make a soup that I call my 15-vegetable soup. It’s basically the meat stock we just talked about with every vegetable I can find in my house mixed in. When the soup is cooked, I pop it in a blender and voilà, super healthy, delicious, nutrient packed soup that’s also repairing my gut at the same time.

When you’re in a flare, eat healthy, don’t go for the nutrition less mac & cheese and potatoes. Keep it healthy, but just eat it in a form that your body can use to help you heal.

Real quick before we leave tip number two behind, I want to mention episode 24 of the podcast. Back in episode 24, I talked all about the power of using soup to heal your gut. When you’re in a flare, there’s just nothing better. Go back and listen to that episode and you’ll get some great tips for how you can use nutrient dense, healing soup to begin the digestive repair process and bust that flare.

TIP #3: YOU AND THE QUEEN HAVE A LOT IN COMMON

[18:43] Moving along to tip #3: Start sipping tea, herbal tea that is.  

Tea, hot or cold, and I should say the right high-quality tea, is amazingly beneficial for your digestive health. Herbal teas, which are not actually teas at all but more like dried fruits, dried flowers, and dried herbs, are a wonderful jumpstart to your healing the flare process.

There are so many herbal teas that are wonderful digestive helpers for things like bloating, gas, abdominal pain after eating, nausea, anxiety and restlessness… there are even herbal blends that work on multiple gut challenges at the same time. But when you’re in flare mode and everything seems to bother you, I prefer single herb teas. Peppermint for heartburn, bloating, gas as well as just being great as a digestive system relaxer after a meal. Ginger tea for when nausea strikes. Chamomile tea to help you relax before bedtime. Sticking to single herb blends in the beginning will help you know which teas work best for you and which ones are best for you to stay away from.

Once you have built a repair the flare foundation, it’s OK to move onto herbal tea combinations. One of my favorites is a tea called throat coat. Some people think it’s just for sore throats, but it’s full of digestive healing compounds like slippery elm, and licorice root, and marshmallow root. Some people do really well with throat coat in early stages, but I don’t think it’s worth risking it. Keep the throat coat tea for after you’ve set a foundation for your digestive healing and are now in full on healing mode.

Warm foods and liquids work for me year-round, but everyone is different. When it comes to tea, let the season be your guide. If the weather is warm, go for it with iced herbal tea. During the cooler months there’s nothing like a warm mug of hot tea to soothe everything that ails you.

TIP #4: FERMENT IT, BABY!

[21:20] It’s time for tip #4 to help you repair that flare: homemade fermented 24-hour yogurt

I’m not talking about the yogurt you buy at the grocery store. This is the yogurt that’s been made at home with ingredients you know and trust and it takes 24 hours to ferment.

Now this is a tip that’s going to need a little disclaimer, because I don’t recommend yogurt for everyone, whether that yogurt is dairy or non-dairy.

Especially when our Crohn’s or colitis is in a flare, one of the main factors is gut dysbiosis. We have an imbalance of the bacteria in our microbiome. This imbalance leads to bloating, gas, abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, arthritis, headaches, sensitivities to foods, brain fog, poor concentration, irritability, moodiness, memory challenges, skin rashes… gut imbalance is a very powerful factor in keeping our IBD humming—and not in a good way. Crohn’s and colitis thrives on a disrupted bacterial system.

One of the ways to bring in this bacterial imbalance back into balance is with yogurt. Homemade, 24-hour fermented yogurt is full of probiotics that have the power to bring balance to our digestive system. I’ve seen people’s whole lives turn around on a couple cups of yogurt a day. Some people thrive on it.

But when the bacterial imbalance is so severe, the addition of yogurt can be challenging to say the least. Whether that yogurt contains dairy or is dairy free—like coconut milk yogurt for example. I love recommending yogurt as an option to help really repair that gut lining initially, but I want to let you know that there is a caveat here. When you’re adding in yogurt, please do not add in heaps and heaps all at once. If that gut dysbiosis in your body is strong, it will set off a chain reaction call the herxhiemer reaction, or you may have heard it called die off. This is the release of all of the bacteria and toxins that are stored up in your body over time. Die off can make you feel worse than your flareup. Have you ever experienced this before? You tried to introduce yogurt and it made you feel worse. This is likely because of this die off reaction.

Bottom line here is that homemade 24-hour fermented yogurt can be great, but go very, very slow. I have had clients that need to start with a half a teaspoon a day, or even just dipping their tongue into the yogurt at first. For some people yogurt works fantastic, and for others, it’s just more of a headache than it’s worth. Give it a try and see how it works for you.

I’ve got three more tips to share on this episode and then I’m gonna tell you how you can get four more of my repair the flare tips to check out after the episode.

TIP #5: GOT CHICKENS?

[25:30] Tip # 5 is: Eggs, and mainly the yolk or the yellow part of the egg.

This is another tip with a caveat. Like yogurt, eggs are fantastic during the repair the flare stage, but eggs are not for everyone.

Egg yolks are a powerhouse of a healer.

They are probably the easiest food to digest on the planet and the amount of digestive healing nutrients found in an egg yolk is insane. Yolks are full of protein so you’re getting large amounts of health building amino acids and vitamins with every egg yolk. B vitamins like B1, B2, B6, B12—B is an essential vitamin for digestive healing. Egg yolks are also high in vitamin A and D as well as biotin. Eggs are full of fatty acids, choline, zinc, and magnesium.

Eggs offer a powerhouse of healing potential, and they set the gut up for further healing and remission down the line. But as we know, some people are sensitive to eggs. If this is you I want to mention two things that are specifically for you with an egg sensitivity, not an egg allergy.

The first thing is that many people who are sensitive to eggs are actually sensitive to the egg white, not the yolk. The part of the egg I’m talking about in your repair the flare phase is the egg yolk. This is where the nutrients that you need are found. So it might be worth trying just the egg yolk to see how you do. The other thing I want to mention, and I’ve seen this happen over and over with several of my clients who are sensitive to chicken eggs. They are not sensitive to other eggs like duck eggs for example. So again, even if you’re sensitive to chicken eggs it can be worth trying eggs from a different animal to see how you react.

If you know you tolerate eggs and maybe even thrive on them, you definitely want them to be a part of your repair the flare phase. Free range organic eggs, the ones you can find from a farmer you trust are best. And having your own chickens who graze on grubs, even better! And when it comes to the gut healing health benefits of eggs, the more raw you eat the egg, the better.

If you’re very trusting of your egg source, you can blend the raw egg into a smoothie, make a gut friendly homemade ice cream with raw eggs, add them to homemade mayo. The way I love to have them and the way I recommend my clients have them is to stir them into a steaming bowl or cup of your bone broth. This cooks the egg a little bit, especially for those of us who are squeamish, like me, about raw eggs. Once the egg is stirred into your broth, you won’t even know it’s there. Like an egg drop soup, it will just add a richness to the taste and flavor of your bone broth. And of course, it’s adding a mega layer of repair the flare healing.  

TIP #6: A SALTY DETOX

[30:10] How are you doing mama? Are you ready to bring these tips home. Let’s move on to our second last repair the flare tip. Tip #6 is all about detoxifying our body naturally. Getting rid of the toxins that build up and keep our flare in an active state. And I’m not a fan of most detoxes where do you fast or participate in a cleanse. Most of these are really irritating to the digestive system. But what I do love is a way to gently detox bacteria and toxins we’ve built up in our body with Epsom salt baths.

Throughout all of these tips we’ve been working our way through the systems of the body. Immune function, inflammation, bacterial balance… to repair the flare and set us up for long lasting remission, we must also focus on our detoxification pathways.

Epsom salt, or magnesium sulfide, those large salt looking crystals that are sold in pharmacy’s, grocery stores, and online have a myriad of health benefits from boosting our magnesium levels (something many of us are deficient in) and reducing stress, but when it comes to the repair the flare phase of your intestinal healing, I love Epsom salt for its ability to flush away toxins and reduce pain and inflammation.

I mentioned that Epsom salt is part magnesium and part sulfate. The sulfates in the Epsom salt help the body to release toxins through a process called reverse osmosis. Have you ever heard of water filtered with a reverse osmosis process to purify it? This is the same type of process. The Epsom salt literally pulls the toxins out of your body.

In the world of Crohn’s and colitis, the toxin releasing effect may help us release bacterial overgrowth and ease bloating, while the anti-inflammatory effect can ease abdominal pain, also  joint pain, help to reduce painful hemorrhoids, and even lower our C-reactive protein levels. One study even found a link between low magnesium levels and high c-reactive protein levels (one of the inflammation markers our doctors are always checking in our bloodwork). So this study showed that Epsom salt can help to increase magnesium levels in our body, which in turn has the power to lower our CRP.

Like with everything I recommend, always start small with Epsom salt. Too much can led to dehydration and diarrhea. We definitely don’t want that so small amounts is best. ¼ cup in a full bath is a good starting place. If you can work your way up to 1-2 cups per bath and soak for about 20 minutes, you’ll get all the detox benefits you need.

Epsom salt is also great as a foot soak. We release toxins though our feet too so try it as a foot bath as well.

We’ve made it to our last tip of the day. Tip #7. Remember, there’s 4 more tips coming your way after the show. If you want the rest of my Repair the Flare tips, all you have to do is go to karynhaley.com/actionplan. That’s karynhaley.com/actionplan

All the tips we talked about today, plus 4 other important repair the flare tips are talked about in more detail in My IBD Action Plan. If you want more helpful IBD tips, you’ll get them there.

TIP #7: THE BEST MEDICINE ISN’T MEDICINE AT ALL

[35:35] So what’s tip #7? Tip #7 is a mental health tip. We know the food we eat (or don’t eat is important). Finding ways to reduce our inflammation, boost our immune system, balance our bacterial load, and flush our toxins… all important. But if we don’t take care of our mental well-being, we don’t stand a chance at achieving remission.

There’s never a more important time to take care of yourself than when you’re in a flare. It’s time to let go of everything you can. Get support from your family, your friends, your neighbors, your partner… leave the dishes, the vacuuming, the laundry…

There’s many mental health wellness tips I could impart you with today—selfcare and prayer, meditation, talking to a girlfriend.. these are all important, but the one I want to drive home for our top repair the flare mental health tip is to find space in your life to smile and laugh, even in your darkest moments.

There’s a reason why we all know the saying laughter is the best medicine. It’s because it is. I could go all into the endorphin release laughing creates, I could talk to you about the positive physiological changes laughter creates, I could mention the research studies that show how laughter boosts our immune system, lowers stress hormones, and decreases pain… but I’m not going to do that because I’d rather show you what laughter can do… with a joke.

This is one of my mom (who passed away earlier this year), this was one of her favorites. It’s a courtroom joke. A supposedly real conversation between an attorney and a witness. It’s the kind of joke you could hear 100 times and it would be funny every time you hear it. Here goes–

ATTORNEY: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: Did you check for blood pressure?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: Did you check for breathing?
WITNESS: No..
ATTORNEY: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
WITNESS: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
ATTORNEY: I see, but could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
WITNESS: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law.

Ba dum bum… could that be a real courtroom conversation? Somehow I doubt it, but it’s funny. It always cracked my mom up and I can’t help but laugh when I hear it. Watching you tube videos, funny movies, tickling your kiddos—or even just watching kids playing together is funny.

Laughter is the best medicine.

Laughter, tip #7.

LET’S DO A QUICK RECAP

[39:49] Let’s do a quick recap of our repair the flare tips.

Tip #1- Homemade bone broth, remember to get the healing collagen and gelatin benefits, homemade is the way to go.

Tip #2- Skip the health food, eat food in a way that’s easy to digest and absorb. Purred, blended, in a soup… make all your food easy for you to use its nutrients to heal.

Tip #3-Herbal tea, hot or cold… peppermint, ginger, chamomile… they all have gut healing benefits.

Tip #4- Homemade fermented 24-hour yogurt- just can’t be beat for its bacterial balancing benefits

Tip #5- Eggs- full of vitamins and minerals, high quality eggs are a must, especially the yoke and as raw as you tolerate—in a hot broth is ideal.

Tip #6- Epsom salt in a bath, in a foot soak, even to soak your bum when hemorrhoids are bothering you, Epsom salt gently detoxifies and reduces inflammation in your body.

Tip #7- Laughter, the best medicine. Laugh often, laugh with your kids, laugh with your friends, find something to laugh at every day.

So how can you use these tips without getting overwhelmed or stressed?

Well, first of all you’ll want to get started well before the flare gets out of control. These tips work best when you feel a flare coming on. Remember, the quicker you get started the better. If all of these are new for you, there’s no need for overwhelm and trying to do all 7. Pick anywhere from 2 or 4 to get you started. You don’t need all of them, just some key tips will get you started. And pick the low hanging fruit and run with those first. Do you already have a whole chicken in your freezer at home? Start with the bone broth. Is Epsom salt in your bathroom cabinet? Go for it with an Epsom salt bath tonight. Get started with what you can and the rest will fall into place when you are ready.

IT’S TIME TO “DO IT LIKE A MOM”

And when your mama, everything is easier when you can get the kids involved. Make eggs for breakfast for everyone in the morning. If you’ve got olders—let them make the eggs! Plan an activity or a movie where the whole family will sit around and laugh. Trying to find a way to eat nutrient dense fruits and veggies in a way you can tolerate them? Smoothies for all! Yes, you can put veggies into your smoothie—spinach and kale blend great and they don’t change the flavor of the smoothie.

Are you ready to add a couple of these tips into your life? You can do it. And I’m by your side if you need help. DM me on Facebook and we’ll chat about how these tips can fit into your life. @TheIBDHealthCoach

OK mom friend, remember, you can get 4 more repair the flare tips and my IBD Action Plan by going to karynhaley.com/actionplan

So there you have it. 7 of my best tips when it’s time for serious gut repair healing. Stop diving in with the diet, the supplements, or whatever else, before you set the stage for gut healing. You’ll be so happy that you took this time to ensure your IBD remission success.

Until we meet again, 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.

[45:39] 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.

4 Stellar Coffee Substitutes That Make Your Gut and your Tastebuds Happy

Are you trying to cut out coffee, but you just can’t find a coffee alternative that ignites your senses and your tastebuds like coffee does… one that even has the power to improve your gut health at the same time?

Oh yeah, it’s possible.

Today, we’re taste testing 4 coffee alternatives to help you decide which one is worth ditching your daily coffee crutch.

Prepare to have your mind blown with some strange (but healthy) compounds that actually taste like the real thing. Coffee connoisseurs welcome—but tea connoisseurs are going to love this episode too!

We’re talking about:

  • Why caffeine is a problem in the first place (get your science geek hat on)
  • Why decaf coffee is not the answer
  • The negative digestive challenges coffee creates (especially if you’ve got IBD)
  • The coffee-alternative taste test that will finally give you the desire to ditch your coffee for good

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll be rushing out to the grocery store to purchase your first coffee alternative—or at least booting up your computer to buy it online ; )

  • [07:20] The negative impact caffeine has on you neurologically and physiologically
  • [09:44] What is methylxanthine and why it gets confused with caffeine
  • [16:53] Why decaf coffee is not the answer
  • [21:48] The psychological and lifestyle component that keeps you coming back to coffee
  • [23:58] The coffee-alternative taste test begins
  • [32:51] The reason why some IBDer’s will need to stay away from teeccino
  • [35:45] The simple at home method for making hot roasted cacao
  • [44:19] Hands down, the healthiest coffee alternative in the taste test
  • [49:00] The weed in your backyard that makes a great tasting coffee substitute
  • [56:25] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level.

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Mentioned in This Episode

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Teeccino

How to Brew Hot Roasted Cocoa

Four Sigmatic

A Peak Inside Roasted Dandelion Root

Additional Resources From the Episode

Cacao vs Coffee

Mayo Clinic and Caffeine: How Much is Too Much?

Can Coffee Upset Your Stomach?

The Untold Truth of Coffee

Caffeine and IBD

Episode Transcript:

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.

Using Craniosacral Therapy to Bring Your Digestive System into Balance with Margie Holly

So you probably have a doctor… You probably use internet doctor as well. We all do that from time to time. What else are you using to help bring your Crohn’s or colitis into balance?

One of the practices I’ve used for some time now is called craniosacral therapy.

Have you heard of it?

Maybe you’ve even tried it. If you have, you know how gentle and truly transformative this approach can be.

Craniosacral therapy works with our own innate power to heal.

Yes, you have that power. Maybe you just haven’t tapped into it yet.

Because sometimes that power, it can be very deep within, but we all have it and craniosacral therapy, can help bring that power out in you.

To help us explore how craniosacral therapy can help you find the power within, I invited leading craniosacral therapist, Margie Holly, to the episode so she can enlighten us with her wisdom and knowledge and the guiding principles behind this healing practice.

Margie has a really unique viewpoint and a unique take on craniosacral therapy and how it can help those of us with Crohn’s and colitis.

We’re talking about:

  • How craniosacral therapy works to help you tap into your innate power to heal your body from within
  • From start to finish, what happens during a craniosacral therapy session
  • Why the phrase “you are not your symptoms” can set your IBD free
  • The indirect and direct effects of craniosacral therapy on our immune system, our microbiome, and our inflammatory process

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll exactly what craniosacral therapy can offer to help you feel better with IBD. You’ll also know how to find a craniosacral therapist who can help you take this knowledge at put it into practice.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [11:02] How craniosacral therapy works to help you tap into your innate power to heal your body from within
  • [15:24] What we learn about “taking responsibility” when we change the role of our doctor from guru with all the answers to a highly respected consultant
  • [16:49] From start to finish, what happens during a craniosacral therapy session
  • [24:08] Why the phrase “you are not your symptoms” can set your IBD free
  • [33:04] The indirect and direct effects of craniosacral therapy on our immune system, our microbiome, and our inflammatory process
  • [39:13] Why it’s so important to connect our first and second brain through the vagus nerve
  • [52:14] Where to go to continue the craniosacral therapy conversation with Margie
  • [56:05] The best way to take your gut healing journey to the next level

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

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Margie’s Website

The Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy Association of North America

Episode Transcript:

Karyn: So you probably have a doctor… You probably use internet doctor as well. We all do that from time to time, what else are you using to help bring your Crohn’s or colitis into balance? One of the modalities that I’ve used for some time now is called craniosacral therapy, have you heard of it? Maybe you’ve even tried it, if you have, you know how gentle and truly transformative this approach can be, it works with our own innate power to heal… Yes, we all have that innate wisdom to heal, sometimes the power, it can be very deep within, but we all have it and craniosacral therapy, it can help bring that power out in you, and if you’re thinking that this is just a little too woo woo for me, Karyn, I want you to just give this episode, listen with an open mind. I think you’ll find that it isn’t as woo woo as you might think. Craniosacral therapy, it’s back in science, and it can be really wonderful, it can be a great adjunct to your current IBD treatment plan. Now, I’m definitely not an expert in craniosacral therapy, so I invited leading craniofacial therapist, Margie Holly, to the episode so that she can enlighten us with all her wisdom and knowledge on this subject. Margie has a really unique viewpoint and a unique take on craniosacral therapy and how it can help with IBD symptoms.

There’s really great information in this interview, but what I love is that Margie is really down to earth and she’s just so knowledgeable, you know, it just… Information just comes out of her because it’s just already in there, she didn’t have to look it up in a book, she’s just so versed in craniosacral therapy that it just comes right out of her… I know you’re gonna love hearing from Margie, you’re gonna love what she has to say, so let’s dive in.

[02:03]: 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 at the 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.

Well, I can welcome dear one, we meet again.

LET’S LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR GUEST.

And I’m especially excited about this episode because I get to introduce you to craniofacial therapist, extraordinaire Margie Holly, talk about… a professional who knows her stuff, Margie has been practicing energy medicine for almost 20 years. Her work combines elements from advanced massage therapy, biodynamic craniosacral therapy, polarity therapy, and RAI with Margie. Every session is unique to her client’s needs, creating a partnership that optimizes your health, therapy sessions with Margie are about restoring calm, finding clarity and regaining control. I know we all want that, right? I love that Margie talks about being passionate to help clients tap into their own capacity to heal, sometimes we just need to hear that somebody else believes in us. Somebody believes that we have the power to heal. During my conversation with Margie, we talk about what a typical craniosacral therapy session looks like, we talk about how craniosacral therapy can get you to the heart of your Crohn’s and colitis by strengthening the immune system, balancing the microbiome and reducing inflammation. Margie talks about how she sees trauma and getting diagnosed with IBD. Don’t sugar-coat it’, it’s a trauma, and she talks about it in a term that I just love, she talks about it with what’s called undigested life experiences.

I just love that. And she talks about how to see your doctor as a consultant instead of one with limitless knowledge on high… Basically, Margie says that we’re in charge of our healthcare, and you’ll see from our conversation how Margie’s work as a craniosacral therapist can help you find the power within to bring your health back into balance. I talked to Margie on Zoom, so I had the pleasure to see her and enjoy this wonderful, serene nature scape that Margie has, it’s right behind her on the wall. right behind her, is a beautiful waterfall in a lush green space with a blue pool of water. Can you picture it? After my interview, Margie and I had a great conversation about this waterfall space, and we talked about the importance of being in nature and how that can have a profound impact on your health as well. If you wanna see her ideal nature scape, head over to my YouTube channel. I’ll leave a link in the show notes so that you can check it out. You can check out that beautiful background, if you could go to a place like that. I just know that it would have a positive impact on your health to…

Alright, I won’t make you wait any longer. Let’s dive into my conversation with craniosacral therapist, Margie Holly. Hi, Margie, welcome to the podcast. It’s so great to have you here today.

[05:46] Margie: Thanks, Karyn, and I’m really excited to share what I know.

TEA OR COFFEE?

Karyn: This is gonna be awesome, and I know that no one on the podcast knows who you are, so I want to introduce you to them, and I like to start with just a couple… Get to know you questions. I find that there’s a couple of questions that are really simple, but they just tell a lot about who you are, is that okay if we start with that? Yeah, fire away. Okay, so there are two questions and they’re either/or questions. So the first question is… tea or coffee?

Margie: coffee.

Karyn: coffee… cream sugar or… How do you take it?

Margie: I’m trying to get away from dairy, but I do, I haven’t been able to eliminate that dairy from my coffee yet. Yeah.

Karyn: Gotcha, okay. And one more… cats or dogs?

Margie: Oh good God, they’re both… I love them both and I have them both. So can I say both?

Karyn: You can. Absolutely say both. Lots of animal lovers say that. I love it. Okay, so that just kinda gives our viewers just a little bit of a sense about you before we get into the meat of it, you are a craniosacral therapist and in full disclosure for everybody, you’re my craniosacral therapist. And so the work that we’ve done together, it’s been so amazingly profound to me that I just knew I had to have you on because I have to share your light and the amazing work that you’re doing with everybody else that has Crohn’s and colitis, that just doesn’t really… They might not know about it. So for our viewers that don’t know what craniosacral therapy is, can you just kinda give us an overview, what is… craniosacral therapy, and I would also love to know how did you get into this work?

[7:22] Margie: Well, in a nutshell, craniosacral therapy is a very gentle form of body work that taps into your nervous system’s ability to bring you back into balance, so it’s very gentle, non-invasive, and it really just helps to optimize the health within your system. Is that not enough of an explanation?

Karyn: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. We’ll get into more specifics, but I love that.

Margie: Yeah, yeah.

Karyn: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And so how did you get into this work?

Margie: Well, I think it was born under the sign of Mercury, so I’m a communicator at heart. My whole life, all of my careers have been as a communicator, and I really just was drawn at one point to get into energy work. I trained in Reiki just for my own satisfaction and to help my family and friends, and then several years later, I was just working with somebody giving him Reiki and he said, You know, have you ever tried massage? And so, I kind of just followed the breadcrumbs, so I went into massage and then I realized that, Okay, well, that’s okay, but it’s kind of limited and it’s very physical in terms of what I had to do with my body, and so I was looking for something else that would be a little bit deeper, a little bit more gentle and cranial came into my awareness. I’m very much a believer in that we hear what we need to hear when we’re ready to hear it, and so that’s how cranial came along, and I’ve been doing that since 2017, and it’s really changed, not only changed my practice, but also changed my life in terms of helping me to be able to navigate the ebb and flow of the chaos that’s life on planet earth.

Karyn: Is it an interesting how… When we go into something, how we might go into it with intentions of helping others, and then what we find is that it also helps us as well, it’s like this beautiful circular energy, it’s like something going on in the ether that where it’s this… I don’t know, it’s like a path that it helps both of us.

Margie: Right, absolutely. And how many adages are out there? Physician, heal thyself. Carpenter, fix your own house, you really have to be coming from a balanced whole place, and if you’re not whole, you can’t help other people be whole as well. I mean, we’re all human and we’re all on this journey, so we’re none of us perfect yet, but it’s in the partnership and the sharing and the learning from each other, I definitely… I think I teach my clients as much as I learn from them. Yeah.

Karyn: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Something that… There’s a lot of different energy works, like you talked about doing Reiki before, right? You talked about massage, something that I think is really unique to craniosacral is the whole idea of the body having the wisdom to heal, having the power to heal itself in craniofacial therapy, tapping into that power, and I know for me, I spent… I’ve had Crohn’s for 35 plus, I think it’s 35 years now, and for 20 of those years, I was giving my power away, I was listening to the doctors only, I was doing… I came from that western medical background, I did everything that they told me to do, and I never got better. Not once, not ever. Surgeries, medications, I never got better. And it wasn’t until I said, What am I doing here? I’m giving my power away. And I’m not getting any better. Why am I doing that and how can I take that power back? And I find that really interesting about craniosacral therapy, because I think it has so much to do with tapping into your own power that maybe you don’t know that you have... How do you experience that with craniosacral therapy? Do you know what I’m talking about?

TAP INTO YOUR INNATE POWER WITHIN.

[11:02] Margie: Exactly, yeah. We all have a healer within us, and we were born with that innate ability, if you look at the way the body was designed, it heals itself, it’s always bringing itself back into balance. If you cut yourself, it heals… If you break a bone, it heals, and it’s the same with your nervous system, it has the capacity to come back into balance and heal and diffuse what I like to call undigested life experience. Some people call it trauma, and trauma has many definitions, but a surprise, a shock and overwhelmed to the nervous system, it can be anything that kind of sets you up for an imbalance, and if you’re not given an opportunity to come back in to balance, the body can’t do what it’s designed to do it. Getting back to that, taking your power and connecting to your inner healer, it is, I think a pathology of our western world where we have been trained from birth not to trust ourselves, not to be the authority, like, Well, we don’t know anything, we just listen to the doctor, listen to the teachers, listen to your parents, not that you shouldn’t listen to your parents, but you should listen to that inner wisdom, and we all have it, we all have that inner wisdom and we were born with it, but…

It wasn’t cultivated in us, and as a matter of fact, it was kind of squelch in us, so the trick is really learning the habits that help you to hear your inner voice, your inner wisdom, and… Yes, consult the doctor’s, consult the experts, they are your consultants, they are not your taskmaster, they’re not the ones there to tell you what to do, they’re the ones who are sharing their wisdom and their understanding of the human system that you’re dealing with, and then you take that information and you combine it with all your other research, and then you combine it with your inner knowing, and then you make your decision… That’s taking your power back.

Karyn: Yeah, exactly. So much of the time, I think, especially as women, we’re trained that we need to give our power away, and specifically for moms who are listening to the podcast, that’s just so important that we feel the power that we already have, right? because we have it. We just haven’t tapped into it. And I love that phrase that you said, this undigested life experience, when you’re talking about how people can feel trauma, whether it’s emotional trauma or physical trauma, and getting diagnosed with a chronic illness that really is a trauma, it’s a physical and an emotional trauma, and I really like how you worded that, that undigested life experience instead of saying… there’s something about the word trauma that makes you feel like victim… It’s traumatic, right? But what I like is this undigested life experience, because then I feel like, Okay, it’s just… There’s something that I still need to do, but I don’t have to be the victim

Margie: Or… Exactly, yeah. And it’s about being able to complete a process. There’s so many… I was just listening to an early childhood, a doctor who specializes in early childhood education and in how you get two-year-olds with the tantrums or teenagers with tantrums, and it’s because they haven’t been allowed to complete their process, but if we allow ourselves to complete a process, then it’s finished and it’s done, and it’s not taking up space in our nervous system, in our brain. In our life.

Karyn: Yeah, and craniosacral therapy can help with you completing that process. Yes, yeah, yeah. I like what you said about how you see the doctor as the consultant, right, they’re not the God on high, they’re not the person with all the wisdom. But when you’re seeing your doctor, you’re coming in as equals, I have this thought, you have this thought, and let’s just kinda see what we can come up with. One of the things I really feel like when I come in to see you for craniosacral is we’ll talk beforehand, right before the treatment, we talk, this is my experience, and you kinda draw out how is that affecting you and what did you want your focus to be for today, I never feel like that I’m coming in and saying, You’re my guru, solve my problem, it’s like, we’re in this place together, we’re on this equal footing, and let’s figure out how to best help me together, so I just love having a mindset of that.

TAKING RESPONSIBILITY IS SCARY… AND POWERFUL.

[15:24] Margie: Yeah, and part of that Karyn is that when you decide to take your power like that, there’s an implied responsibility that it’s so easy to give your power away because it’s kind of intimidating to think, Oh my gosh, I got myself here. How do I get out of it? I have no idea. Give me a pill. Cut me open, tell me to do this five times a day, whatever. No, it’s about taking that personal responsibility to participate in your own life, be the star of your own life, and even when you just make that shift, I think something in your physiology can shift…

Karyn: Yes, I experienced that myself when I’ve made that shift and said, There’s no savior here, there’s nobody coming in to just give me the wave of the magic wand, give me the pill. I can do this. Right, there’s a freedom in that. But also that, like you said, that responsibility.

We kind of talked around, just in general terms, what craniofacial therapy is that I would really love for you to talk our listeners through what happens during a craniosacral therapy session. When I come in the door from start to finish, what’s happening, because for somebody who’s never heard of this before, it might sound kind of like.. What are they actually doing? A lot of people are familiar with massage. How is it different than massage? How was it like massage? What’s actually happening when someone comes into your office?

WHAT HAPPENS DURING A CRANIOSACRAL THERAPY SESSION?

[16:49] Margie: First, when someone comes to see me, as you said, the conversation is the first thing, and there’s a reason for that, it’s to engage in a partnership, first of all, and understand what your goals are, therapeutics are, where your challenges are, and then to explain how the therapy might help, but it’s also… There’s something that happens in your physiology when your body and your brain hear the words out loud versus just thinking them… We’re writing them down on a piece of paper. There is a physiological response to that, so at the start of a session, we’ll talk about briefly, what’s going on for you, what’s going on in general, what’s going on this week or today, because then your nervous system or the mechanism inside that inner heal or can hear those words and say, Oh good. That’s what we’re gonna work on that. Great, and it sort of primes your system to work on it, and then we get on a massage table, you’re fully closed, it’s very private, you can get under the covers and get all cocoon or just lay on top, however you prefer. And the first thing we do is we settle your system, so the craniosacral system Just to sort of back up a little bit, is everything from your head to the bottom of your spine, so it’s your brain, it’s all of the membranes and the bones in your skull, it’s your spine, the nerves that come down your spine, so that whole system is something that I hold and help to settle in practical terms, as you’re laying on the table, I might contact…

Your body in place is very light contact, I might cradle your head or I might even hold at your feet, will put my hand underneath your sacrum, which is that triangular bone at the bottom of your spine, and that helps to settle the nervous system. So the first thing you need to do with anything is to have the resources, so maybe the first 10-15 minutes even of a session, I might just be begin in stillness, getting your system so still that it has a chance to come out of its fight or flight mode and come back into the healing, rest and digest mode, Let your nervous system settle out so that then I can hear your system, so in those 10 minutes, I’m listening deeply to what’s going on in your nervous system, so I can understand where there might be some hiccups, some patterns of holding, and then your body tells me where we’re gonna work, and then I get more specific, so in the case of your audience who are dealing with IBD, I will probably likely work in that whole field… The abdominal field, now that starts at the diaphragm and goes all the way to the top of the pelvis, and it encompasses all your viscera, all your vital organs, but it also has other things going on and they’re working more specifically with that area.

It can tell me where there might be restrictions that need to be released, where there might be fluid build-up that needs to be flushed, where things just need to be able to have a chance to come back into balance, and the great thing about the type of craniosacral I practice is not putting any force in from outside the body, I’m just sort of letting your body tell me where it needs support, and then when the body is supported, it can say, Oh, I had no idea I was holding that there, let me just release that, let me open and it’s amazing. You’ve felt it. In the context of a session, people might just have little twitches or releases or energetic shifts, a feeling of flow, there’s a lot that could happen in a session and then… So it’s really your body that’s guiding me through just gentle placement of hands on specific areas to help support whatever needs supporting in that area.

Karyn: Yeah, and so when you’re doing this during the session, just in terms of what you are feeling it as the practitioner, are you feeling kind of like energy from our body as we’re lying on the table? What are you feeling?

[20:52] Margie: Well, there’s several layers to this, in my two-year training, it’s a two-year program to learn this, we learn how to palpate the flow of spinal fluid, so the spinal fluid has a natural oscillation from the cranial field down through the spinal column and back up again, and its function is to feed the nerves, to flush out the metabolic by-products of the nervous system that has a palpable motion, just like learning how to feel a blood pulse… We don’t all know how to do that, so I’ve been trained to do that. We start with that flow and that will tell me a lot about what’s going on in your nervous system, how vital it is, or how deplete in it is, or if there are blockages anywhere that would interrupt the optimal healing for health of that. So that’s what I’m tapping into first and foremost, is that fluid flow, that oscillation, that title flow, and also that flow reflects on… our bodies are what? 75-80% water. And so, fluid kind of reflects on itself, so that cranio cerebral spinal fluid, as it oscillates back and forth, it also affects all the parent bones of the body, the shoulders, the arms, the legs, the hips, so I can feel sort of a…

It’s almost like a breathing of the body, of the tissue field, so we look at the fluid field, the tissue field, which is your bones and your muscles, and then yes, there is an energetic component too, I can feel the bio-field, which is your… Some people call it aura, science calls, is it the bio-field electromagnetic field, whatever you wanna term it, that’s the energetic field of your body, so the form of cranio that I practice is called biodynamic, and it takes in all three of those fields and treats it as a whole… So there are other forms of cranial that are a little more by mechanical, a little more applying for us from outside the body, I prefer mine because it just lets the body do its adjustment in its own way, in its own time, and that provides for a more lasting shift.

Karyn: It’s absolutely fascinating to me, right, if you never think in terms of this, it’s just… It’s like a whole new world is opening up to you. Right, it’s just absolutely fascinating. So something that I’ve heard, and you can tell me if this is true or not, but it… So people who are coming to you for craniosacral therapy and they’re coming with Crohn’s disease or with colitis, they’re probably thinking, well, all of my work is gonna be focused right here, right in the intestine, and you can’t see where my hands are, but it’s the small intestine the large intestine may be the esophagus, but from what I hear, you might be touching my foot or my head, right, but it’s still having an effect on the digestive system…

YOU ARE NOT YOUR SYMPTOMS.

Margie: Yeah, and it’s because Karyn, you are not your symptoms…

Karyn: Wait a minute, we gotta sit with that for just a second, you guys say that one more time because that’s good… say that one more time.

[24:08] Margie: You are not your symptoms. Yeah, and so just focusing simply on the symptoms, it’s kind of like taking an energetic aspirin, okay, so maybe that might help, but if you’re not treating the whole person, the whole body, mind, spirit, that’s the organism that we’re working with, and that’s who you are and to treat things on a global scale. Gives your system the space and can draw on resources to help me… You’re imbalanced in your digestive system, it didn’t happen all at once, it was probably an expression of your body trying to hold some kernel of health and saying, Okay, I’ve got to encapsulate something here, I’ve got to… So that this organism, this person can continue functioning, I need to grab this and put it here and control it, and so if you really look at any condition, I consider it an expression of health, it’s your body trying to do its best to do its job that might not hurt. That might not feel good. It might hurt, it might cause you sleepless nights, but if you can make that shift of shifting from, Oh my gosh, this is wrong, to oh my gosh, how wonderful my body is, but sending me these signals, and now it’s up to me to interpret the signals, that’s where my role as communicator comes in, because I’m helping facilitate a conversation between you and your body.

Karyn: Yeah, so big. So huge. And so when you’re doing this, tell me, do you have sessions where it’s completely quiet and nobody is saying anything, right, and there’s so much going on, but yet it’s silent, and then other sessions where you’re talking with your client the whole time. How does that work?

Margie: Yeah, and you know what, I can have those kind of sessions, like a variety of sessions for the same client, it really just depends on what’s going on with your system today and what needs support, someone who has some chronic condition is more than likely be in sort of constant low-grade state of fight or flight. You know what that is, right?

Karyn: Yes, but explain it for those who might not know.

FIGHT OR FLIGHT ISN’T JUST FOR CAVEMEN.

Margie: So your autonomic nervous system, that’s the nervous system that… consider it like automatic, it’s everything your body does to keep you functioning every day from blinking your eyes to breathing, to sleeping, digesting your food. Things you just don’t have to think about. There’s two pieces of that, one. It’s job is to keep us safe, and that’s the prime directive of our nervous system, is to keep us safe and keep us functioning so that we have turned fight or flight mode, so when the body or the system perceives a threat, and back when we were cavemen and there were saber tooth tigers or other rival tribes coming along, we had to fight or flee, there’s other components to that for women in particular, there’s freeze and fawn, they’re the other two… and it’s basically all the survival mechanism, so we’re not running from saber tooth tigers today, but you know what? We’re navigating traffic, we’re dealing with our spouse and our kids and trying to deal with our careers maybe, and also maybe our aging parents, however many pieces of our life are swirling around us, if we’re not ready and fully resourced, all of them can be perceived as a threat, and if all of that hits at once for many of us, if that’s what it’s doing, and then not even to mention this past year with covid…

Our systems are always trying to keep us safe, they’re always monitoring for where the danger is, and so if that danger is so overwhelming… it overwhelms the nervous system, it cannot do its job of helping us thrive because we’re just trying to survive, so… Yes, some people who are in that right now, probably their whole session is just going to be holding and allowing that system to calm down, come out a fight or flight, recognize that, alright, it’s safe now, I can shift into the other part of the functionality, which is we term rest and digest… well rest, digest and reproduce. There’s a lot of clients that I work with who are dealing with fertility issues as part of their stuff is dealing with stress and being able to get out of fight or flight mode, so their bodies are like, Oh okay, now I can make a baby. So, tiny steps first though, so if somebody is in that kind of a chronic chaotic existence, it’s gonna be very beneficial and maybe even one or two sessions just doing nothing but being still, and once we get into the other part of that, when people have a little bit more resources, and usually it happens within the course of a session that maybe after the first 10-15 minutes, I feel a greater vitality in that drive behind the fluid flow or in the expression of that breathing of the bones.

It just gets bigger. I can tell there’s more vitality in the system, and then we can start taking that vitality and applying it to things, and that’s where a lot of times, sometimes the session gets talky because I wanna hear feedback like, Okay, I have my hand on your belly right now what are you sensing? What’s going on for you? And then when you’re giving me that feedback, I can respond appropriately and we can really work through it to help make those dramatic shifts that… And sometimes they’re real subtle shifts that will support your underlying health.

Karyn: I really like that you mentioned that one of the things that you’re doing with craniosacral therapy is helping people with infertility because that’s something that people with Crohn’s and colitis really struggle with, and I can imagine that along with infertility, that it probably would be helpful for anybody, even just having menstrual cycle challenges or going through menopause too, because as women, we’re all gonna be in those stages at one point or another.

[30:14] Margie: So guess what? In the brain, which is the large part of what I treat, that’s the cranial field, your brain has chambers in it called ventricles, where the spinal fluid is manufactured and then pointed and then deliver it out to the system, but laying right around or on top and below those chambers are the major glands, the pituitary gland, the hypothalamus, they are the ones who regulate our hormones, they regulate puberty regulate our reproductive hormones, and they work in conjunction with our adrenals in the case of adrenal fatigue or our ovaries in the case of fertility, so helping to balance and to support the optimal functioning of those glands is very important to all of those issues. Yeah.

HOW CRANIOSACRAL THERAPY HELPS IBD.

Karyn: And so one of the things that I’m thinking about, I’m just kind of thinking, I’m putting myself in the mind of somebody listening or watching us, and they might be thinking, that sounds really interesting. Right, and of course, I’m looking for anything that could heal that could help my Crohn’s or colitis and bring it into remission, but how could it help me specifically… So some of the things that people with IBD really think about and really have challenges with is our immune function, right, this is an autoimmune disease. So it impacts our immune system, and we kinda have what I call this wonky immune system that’s really over-active, and so that’s a challenge for us. Another challenge for people with IBD is bacterial balance, you the microbiome. It’s completely out of balance. So that’s something that’s really challenging for us. And then the other part, the other piece of Crohn’s and colitis is inflammation, we’re dealing with inflammation, and that inflammation isn’t just housed in the gut, it might start in the gut, but then through leaky gut through other processes, because we’re not just walking one organ… Right, we’re a holistic body and it all is…

It all is together, right? So it might leak into other systems, so that inflammation might show up in your joints or it might show up as a skin rash, or it might show up as a brain fog, or even ADHD, poor concentration, it’s amazing where that inflammation can go. So we’re dealing with these three issues, this autoimmune feature, the microbiome that’s out of balance and the inflammation, so in what ways could it specifically help those types of issues for people who are saying, wow, you know, Margie, this sounds really interesting, but how can it help me specifically with my illness.

[33:04] Margie: I understand. So I’d say that the effects of cranial on those three things are both indirect and direct... Okay, so indirectly… Well, we’re looking at the nervous system, all of those functions are controlled by the nervous system, to take the idea of the immune function and the autoimmune specifically, it kinda comes down to there’s an element of the body not recognizing itself, and so it thinks that it’s invading itself, so it’s always trying to fight itself. So part of that is that the nervous system is so… I’m gonna say over-regulated, it’s kind of like it’s hyper-regulated, it’s like spinning in on itself so that it can’t recognize friend from foe, and so it’s in the stillness where, like I said, coming from the fight or flight back into the rest and digest, helps the body to calm down and see, Okay, I don’t need to always continuously be sending the signal of something wrong, something’s wrong, something’s wrong. So in other words, I guess I put it shortly, it helps break that feedback loop so that your system can recognize itself and begin to differentiate where it needs to build itself up and where it can just sort of fall off and not attack itself.

I know there’s a better way to put that, but…

Karyn: No, I think that was great because that is… That’s exactly what is happening. We are attacking ourselves, that’s the whole issue with autoimmunity, and so finding a way to break that cycle is huge, and I love that craniosacral therapy can help with that.

0:34:56.6 S2: And so that also kind of goes back into the microbiome imbalance area too, because again, it’s… What craniosacral can do is to still the system, we work with something called a still point, that’s a therapeutic term. A still point is where we encourage that flow of the CSF to just stop, and so when that stops, it’s like the body can Pause and all of the energy that it used to keep that going can be used for something else, it can settle and it can build and it can potentiate. So, that allows that you’re living organism to recognize and learn that, Oh, balance is possible because when you’re out of balance, your body doesn’t even know that balance is possible, so getting into the stillness, and it’s not only craniosacral that helps with this, but that’s part of the… As a feature of it is that it just helps your body be able to learn that, Oh, this is what balance feels like, and then again, let’s… It then build on itself, it’s kind of like, remember those old toy cars that you would just sort of pull back and full back and…

Karyn: Yes, my kids love those, they make those.

Margie: So we go back to your system and let it build up and then it can go to zoom, it has a much more potency in it.

Karyn: There’s some sort of scientific… Some physics principle at play there, right?

Margie: Yes, yes, I know. I didn’t really do well in physics.

Karyn: We’re not the right people to answer that, but… Yes, but I totally get what you’re saying, right? When you take that step back, it gives you the energy to propel forward, right, and that’s what we’re trying to do here is give the body a place where I can propel forward, and sometimes with craniosacral, I find that sometimes… when I’m in a session, there’s a light bulb that goes off and it’s in it, like you said, you have a sigh or a breath or something, and then other times, I just don’t know, I’m like, I just have to sit and think with this for a little while I’m not quite sure what… I know something happened to here, I’m not quite sure I feel a release, but I’m gonna have to go and think about that… Right, so it’s interesting how sometimes you have this light bulb moment and then other times… I just know it’s more subtle, like the transformation is subtle, it’s still pulling that car back so that you can propel yourself, but it’s… How it hits you different, depending on where, I guess where you’re at, where your mind is out, where your body is that for that day, yeah.

Margie: Exactly. And then when you have a conversation with someone you don’t always… You might go away thinking, Wow, that was a really fulfilling conversation, you might not be able to remember what you talked about. You just remember it was a really great experience. Well, it’s the same thing, you’re having a conversation with your body, your body is communicating things to you, and when you get off the table, you might not really understand what exactly just happened, you just know you feel better, but everything is a little bit more resourced, everything’s a little more smooth. Yeah, so it’s not something you have to put a label to or a finger on like, Oh, that’s what happened. If you just feel like that was beneficial. Right, there’s something that shifted in me… That’s enough.

And the other thing too, is that your on the table starts a process, sometimes takes two or three days to integrate and continues… I have people who sometimes they get off the table thinking, Oh my God, I feel like I slept for eight hours, and other times they get off the table thinking, Well, I felt good, I don’t really know what that was, but then they called me three days later, and say, Oh my God, I just… It was amazing, I slept so well last night, or I feel so clear-headed or my stomach not bothering me today, so it’s a cumulative kind of progressive effect. We’re seeing your nervous system how to bring itself back into balance so that it can support you in your day... Yes.

Karyn: Okay, something that’s coming up for me that I’m thinking about when people are coming to you for a session, do you say to them, You know it’s gonna take eight sessions, do you say to them, You need to come once a week. If you want this to be effective, how can people plan what craniosacral therapy might look like in their lives?

Margie: Well, again, I go back to your inner healer, you have to know, you have to decide, and some people are so out of touch with their bodies then they can’t even feel what’s going on, even if I say, Oh, I also do massage. So sometimes if I’m doing a massage, I say, How do you feel right now? I don’t feel a thing, some people are just really out of touch. And it makes sense if you’ve got something going on where you feel like your body has betrayed you… You don’t want to be friends with that, you don’t wanna even know, you know what, I don’t wanna hear it, you just wanna get through your day, so… You can’t really say, Oh yeah, it’s gonna take X amount. I do tell people, hey, give it three sessions. That will really help you see if this is for you, now, there’s plenty of other forms of therapy out there that can really be beneficial for people, and that’s why there’s so many individuals, that’s why there are so many different ways of helping you access your own health but my advice is always to listen to yourself. One of the things that I do in all of my sessions at the end is I connect the gut wisdom, the gut brain to the head brain, and literally connecting that neural pathway through that vagus nerve, most people have heard about the vagus nerve in context of…

Oh, that’s what helps you relax. The vagus nerve, that’s only 20% of what it does, 80% of the nerves of fibers of the vagus nerve is listening and sensory, and it’s giving your brain information and so if you think about how the body is formed in embryology, the gut forms before the brain, so you have neurons in your gut that give you information, and so being able to tap into that and listen to that, and that’s another thing that’s been trying to kind of try to… They weed it out from us, they train us not to do that, right, oh, you have to manage by facts and data, you can’t… You have to… Where’s the science? No, where’s the gut feeling? Where’s the understanding of what’s really going…

Karyn: Yes it’s that, second brain.

IS THE SECOND BRAIN REALLY THE FIRST BRAIN?

Margie: Yeah, and that… I call it the first brain… Really.

[41:23] Karyn: You know what? I love it. It is the first brain. You are so right. You know, I remember my son, I always would talk to the kids about their second brain, which I hear what you’re saying first brain, but I always would say it’s your second brand, you know, we actually have… We have two brains, and there’s one in your gut, and my son went to… It was either kindergarten or first grade, and they were talking about the parts of the body, and the teacher mentioned the brain, and my son said something about the brain in a stomach, and the teacher was like, What are you talking about? What is that kid learning… And she actually called me, Why are you teaching this kid that there’s two brains like… Well, actually there is, right? And I really love Margie that you talk about it, how it being the first brain, we have more neurons there than we do in our brain, so that makes complete sense that feeling it is so much more powerful and impactful than the thought that we’re getting in our brain.

Margie: And being able to tap into that. Now, this… That simple thing you can do to do that, put your hand on your stomach and put another hand on your neck, this is the track where the vagus nerve comes down behind the ear, down through the chest, stomach, so as you’re contacting those points along that pathway, you’re actively activating that pathway, that neural pathway, you’re reinforcing it,

Karyn: And anybody who’s listening to this, if you’re not driving a car, operating a car.

Go for it, try that, so that you can kind of feel that connection for yourself, it’s really powerful if you really dive into it, you really concentrate on it. I’ve done that myself. Yeah.

Margie: Yeah, yeah. Why, I encourage people to do that when they’re deciding how many sessions they need, to say, Hey… Did that work for me? How was that? Some people know, Hey, I’m working on a specific things… I got specific goals, like for instance, if somebody’s dealing with a concussion, but those concussion symptoms, they might need to schedule, I say at least three sessions, one, because you’re building on momentum and you’re flushing things out and you’re really addressing a specific issue when it’s something a little bit more general, like stress management or anxiety, that could be something that we do two or three sessions in a row in close succession, and then you decide, Okay, maybe I need to come see you once a month, maybe I’ll come back for a tune-up once a quarter, once a year, whatever works for your body, and you are the one who knows best what works for your body. Amen to that.

Karyn: Yeah, so it sounds like what you’re saying, you may feel something from the first session, you may not, but give it three sessions. And see, how do you feel? At least a minimum of three. And see, did it make a difference for me? Do I feel different? With my illness? Yes, yes, yeah. And I know we’re not, Oh, and I know we’re not coming to you with just Crohn’s or just colitis… Right, we all have lots of other issues, so what I think is really cool is when you go to your gastroenterologist or you go to your cardiologist, right, you’re going for that one thing with craniosacral therapy, you’re not just going for the Crohn’s or just the colitis, you’re going for your whole body, so that might be your most pressing issue, but what I find is that you might find… Actually, you have some other things going on, right? As well, and so it’s working on all of those, so it’s questioning like, how do I feel overall, how does my whole body feel after this session or after a couple of sessions…

Margie: Exactly.

WHO SHOULD STAY AWAY FROM CRANIOSACRAL THERAPY?

Karyn: Yeah. Is there anybody, Margie, in wrapping up today, is there anybody that you feel like just it would not be a good fit for craniosacral therapy, maybe there’s a contraindication, or maybe it could even be some sort of emotional barrier or block… Is there anybody that you feel like… No, it wouldn’t be for them.

[45:01] Margie: Well, yeah, there are certain… Overall, there are very few contraindications for this work because it is so gentle, it’s really just very still, and that’s allowing your body to do what it’s gonna do at its own pace, that being said, I would not work with somebody who has a very acute head injury, I’d wanna make sure that they see their primary care acute management team first to make sure that there’s nothing going on, because we are working with the fluids and the pressures in the membranes and the brain, and so if somebody had just had a stroke or who has just had a traumatic brain injury, I will not see them because they need to get stabilized first, this is more of a rebuilding therapy versus a primary acute care thing. Other people, I wouldn’t say I wouldn’t see, but I have worked with folks who have come to me to say, Yeah, I know I’m holding trauma. And what I can do is support their system, but I will refer them to, say, a psychologist to work with, if they’re dealing with really horrendous stuff that’s very deep in there, I know my limitations and I know my scope of practice, and I’m not a psychologist I know I can help work with your psychologist as a team, as part of your health team to help you work through these issues because mental emotional trauma is stored in the body as well, so getting at it from a what’s called a somatic standpoint, really help move the needle in terms of diffusing that experience so that you’re not…

Something like that. It’s kind of like, if you’ve ever seen a whirlpool, your life is flowing along and something might happen, for instance…a couple of months ago, somebody cut me off in traffic and I saw him changing lanes and he just didn’t see me, and he just came right in front of me, so it was just a little fender bender, but now when I’m in traffic and I see somebody changing lanes, I still have that trigger like, Oh, and your like danger, these triggers kind of get stuck in our system if they don’t get diffused, they can become kind of like a whirlpool just swirling around on itself. Now, the little fender bender is a very gentle example, but people have some really deep trauma in their lives, and some of them just might not even remember the trauma if it happened long ago or if it was buried so deep. So what I’m saying is, I will work with folks who are working with those issues, but if they’re working with a healthcare, a mental healthcare provider as well, so that we can all work in a team to help diffuse the trauma, wherever it’s a living…

IBD HEALING TAKES A VILLAGE.

Karyn: It takes a village. It takes a village to heal. It really, really does. I really like what you’re saying about that. Something that I talk about often on the podcast is this invisible wheel of wellness that we all have, and it has spokes, and so I like what you’re saying that you’re… Nothing in craniosacral is the end all be all. It’s the one thing that you need to do. No, it’s one spoke in that wheel of wellness, it’s part of your care, it’s part of your wellness journey, it’s not the one thing, and they all can work synergistically together to bring about health. Exactly, yeah, I love it. And so that brings me to my last question, which is, most of my listeners, they are not local in Maryland like you and I are, so I’m just curious, is craniosacral therapy is something that somebody could benefit from virtually… Could they contact you and work with you virtually, or is it something that they should really try to find somebody locally?

Margie: You know, it’s interesting because this past year with us being in lockdown, many of my colleagues have done distance… I do distance work, it’s not technically called cranial work though, this is a therapy that’s been around for quite some time, it’s… Roots are in osteopathy, and then it’s grown from there. But we have to be very careful about our people’s understanding of the work and where are places in the overall scheme of the healthcare landscape, so to call something craniosacral means you’re putting hands on someone and you’re working manually with their cranio system. I can tell you people get a lot of really amazing results, even in terms of releasing physical tension and stress from the distance work that I do, but I can’t call it craniosacral because I don’t wanna do that to our industry, we’re struggling for legitimacy as it is, so I just like to be really clear about what it is and what it isn’t. And so there are some things that can be done virtually, but people can also look for a craniosacral therapist in their area.

Karyn: Probably 10 years ago, it was really difficult to find somebody, but I’m willing to bet most everywhere that somebody lives, probably even overseas, that there could be a craniosacral therapist in your area. Is there a national association or anything like that, that I could go and say, find a practitioner?

WHERE CAN I FIND MY OWN CRANIOSACRAL THERAPIST?

[50:15] Margie: Yes, in North America, which is a Canada and the US, there is an association called the Craniosacral Therapy Association of North America. Their website is craniosacraltherapy.org

Karyn:  I’ll be sure to put that in the show notes.

[50:33]: Yeah, and they have a Find a Practitioner feature on their website, you can also read a lot of articles and learn a little bit more about the nitty-gritty of it, now that is a reference to anyone that practices biodynamic craniosacral therapy. As I said, there are other forms of cranial therapy, which may or may not be as effective, everybody has their own flavor that they like, for me, that’s the most effective because it treats the whole person body-minded spirit. There are other more biomechanical forms of this work where it’s, no matter how light the touch, you’re still applying pressure from outside the body and force from out the outside the body, and the therapist is deciding when and where to do that. That can be a very effective work, but if you want to just let your inner healthcare healer do the work, then I would look for the bio-dynamic form.

Karyn: I have loved this conversation because even though I feel like I’ve been doing craniosacral for a while, it’s been really beneficial for me, and I felt like, Oh, I know a lot about that, I learned a lot today, or just even affirmed of my understanding of how it can help me and it just gives me just kind of a little skip in my step today thinking, Hey, pat on the back, I do that. So I wanna thank you so much for joining us for this conversation today, I know that after hearing your story about how you came to craniosacral therapy and about hearing about your practice, I know that my listeners are gonna wanna find out more about you, so is there a place that they can go… Do you have a website that they can go to to find out more about the wonderful work you’re doing?

CONNECT WITH MARGIE.

[52:14] Margie: You can find me at findthehealthwithin.com, because this is what this work is about. It’s about finding the health within your own system, so findthehealthwithin.com. You can read a little bit more about me and my background as well as Schedule, I offer a free 15-minute phone consult if you really just wanna chat and find out about how it can help you. I think that might be the place to start.

Karyn: This is really amazing, if you’ve never done this before, it can have a profound impact on how you feel overall and on your Crohn’s and colitis symptoms. So I highly encourage you to do that. I will put the link to Marie’s website on the show notes so that you can go and check it out. Awesome, thank you so much, Margie. I just really enjoyed our conversation today, thank you for sharing the space with me.

Margie: Thank you Karyn for having me, I appreciate the opportunity to educate people on the possibilities that are out there for them.

Karyn: Awesome, take care.

Isn’t she just so knowledgeable? I love hearing how Margie talks about our body’s ability to heal and how craniosacral therapy can really help us tap into that, if you wanna know more, if you want more information about Margie, remember there’s a link to her website in the show notes, I know that she’d love to hear from you whether you live in Maryland or you live anywhere else in the world, and if you want to find a craniosacral therapist in your area, there’s a link in the show notes for that as well, so you can find a practitioner where you live, I hope you learned something today that made you just say, Ah, or maybe you just got a glimmer or a feeling of hopefulness when it comes to healing your Crohn’s or colitis, there’s always another door opening, another modality to try… Craniosacral therapy is another modality that you could possibly try, don’t give up Mama, stay in the fight and just know that I’m in it with you, I’m right there by your side, if you wanna reach out and chat with me…

Remember, I have a new Facebook page. It is @TheIBDHealthCoach @TheIBDHealthCoach, let me know how this episode landed for you and also let me know what other episodes you want… What do you wanna hear about? Until we meet again, 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 tacky 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 It moms everywhere. And if you feel called to do it, share this podcast with an IBD mom who you know could really use an uplifting message today, because that’s what we’re all about over here at the typo cast. One last thing, if you’re still with me and if you are, you’re definitely my thing, we have to get to know each other better.

If you’re tired of living on the hamster wheel of IBD with the ups and downs between players and remission, if you’re struggling to get control of your abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea and other troubling IBD symptoms, go to the website, it’s Karynhaley.com, and my mom had to be just a little bit different of my name with a Y, so it’s K-A-R-Y-H-A-L-E-Y dot com, and schedule your very own free 30-minute IBD Root Cause troubleshooting 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 to 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 damn your yoga pants for us to work together. You know, I’m wearing them too.

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 cause troubleshooting, fasted at Karen healed com, click on the work with me tab and I’ll see 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 pro-professional medical advice. The statements made in the CD podcast for moms with it, either by me or my guests, is not intended to diagnose, treat, 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 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.

The Gut Healing Supplement Your Doctor Hasn’t Told You About

When was the last time your GI doctor said to you, instead of your usual medication, let’s try THIS supplement first? Uh, never? Maybe they say take a multivitamin, but other supplements, heck no.

Why not?

Is it because they just don’t learn about supplements in medical school? Is it because medication management is what they’re trained in and on top of that, they are inundated with pharmaceutical reps who give them free samples and slanted research that touts the benefits of said medications without giving a full picture of all the toxic side effects?

Is it because they just don’t run in circles where gut healing supplements are being discussed so they never see the myriad of scholarly and scientific research studies being conducted that prove the benefit of supplements for those of us with IBD?

Maybe it’s all of the above.

You know I support medication when it’s needed. I’m the first to say that when I’ve needed meds, I was first in line to get them.

But medication as the goal we strive for?

Medication as a life long cover up without ever getting to the root cause?

Medication that keeps us from exploring the healing power of food?

No way.

There are supplements that can bridge the gap between medication and stand on your own “food is medicine” health. And you, dear one, need to know about these amazing bridges too few are talking about.

We’re talking about:

  • Do you have leaky gut? Let’s find out
  • The #1 food source of l-glutamine is something you might already be eating
  • The trick to figuring out the best l-glutamine dose for you
  • Who l-glutamine is not for

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll know everything about a powerful supplement that actually helps our Crohn’s and colitis symptoms, but few doctors are bold enough to tell you about.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [08:55] Do you have leaky gut? Let’s find out
  • [13:36] The organ that’s the gateway to food sensitivities and how l-glutamine can help
  • [17:30] The #1 food source of l-glutamine is something you might already be eating
  • [20:55] The trick to figuring out the best l-glutamine dose for you
  • [24:20] Who should take l-glutamine on an empty stomach and who should take it with food
  • [27:35] Who l-glutamine is not for
  • [31:02] L-glutamine’s role in improving intestinal barrier function, cell regeneration, bacterial balance, and decreased inflammation
  • [34:05] The best way to take your gut healing journey to the next level

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

DM me on Facebook

The Gut Love Community

Thorne Research L-Glutamine

Jarrow L-Glutamine

Source Naturals L-Glutamine

Additional Resources

L-Glutamine Benefits Leaky Gut and Metabolism

Should You Use L-Glutamine for Leaky Gut

Why L-Glutamine is the #1 Ingredient for Repairing Leaky Gut

Teaspoon to Gram Converter

Effect of glutamine on Th1 and Th2 cytokine responses of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells

Therapeutic Potential of amino acids in inflammatory bowel disease

Side effects of long-term glutamine supplementation

Role of glutamine in protection of intestinal epithelial tight junctions

Molecular mechanisms contributing to glutamine-mediated intestinal cell survival

Effects of glutamine supplementation in patients with inflammatory bowel disease

Episode Transcript:

When was the last time your GI doctor said to you, instead of your meds (or, let’s give them the benefit of the doubt, along with your meds) let’s try THIS supplement first? Uh, never? Maybe they say take a multivitamin, but other supplements, heck no.

Why not?

Is it because they just don’t learn about supplements in medical school? Is it because medication management is what they’re trained in and on top of that, they are inundated with pharmaceutical reps who give them free samples and slanted research that touts the benefits of said medications without giving a full picture of all the toxic side effects? Is it because they just don’t run in circles where gut healing supplements are being discussed so they never see the myriad of scholarly and scientific research studies being conducted that prove the benefit of supplements for those of us with IBD?

Maybe it’s all of the above.

You know I support medication when it’s needed. I’m the first to say that when I’ve needed meds, I was first in line to get them. We’ve got a relaxing and remitting chronic illness for goodness sake. There are going to be times when medication will be our savor.

But medication as the goal we strive for?

Medication as a lifelong cover up without ever getting to the root cause?

Medication that keeps us from exploring the healing power of food?

No way.

There are supplements that can bridge the gap between medication and stand on your own “food is medicine” health. And you, dear one, need to know about these amazing bridges too few are talking about.

Today, I’m pulling the cover off, I’m looking under the hood, sneaking in the back door, uncovering the secrets behind… whatever dun, dun, dun analogy works for you, on a particular supplement that actually helps our Crohn’s and colitis symptoms, but few doctors are bold enough to tell you about.

Here we go—

[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]

[03:14] I trying to think about the first time I was introduced to the supplement l-glutamine. That’s the IBD healing gem we’re talking about today. I don’t know why, but the exact moment isn’t coming to me. It was certainly in the last 10 years, during my “I am gut healing woman, hear me roar” phase. I’m still in that phase by the way and, personally, I hope it lasts forever.

Well, whenever I was introduced to l-glutamine, the one thing that I do remember is that for me, it was life changing. As you’ll see as we dive into our conversation about l-glutamine, it can have a multitude of different benefits for different people, but for me, the most noticeable difference was in two areas: my poop and my gut pain.

The constant, chronic diarrhea moved into formed, less frequent bowel movements (amen for that), and the daily abdominal pain subsided in a matter of a couple weeks. When we’re talking IBD, those two improvements are huge!

It’s possible that l-glutamine could be a game changer for you too. I’ve seen it have a big impact with clients and GLC members as well. We’re going to tackle all the ins and outs of this amazing supplement, and there’s lots to discuss, but don’t hit pause and purchase on Amazon just yet (I know how your mind works—and please don’t purchase on amazon), because while glutamine is great, it isn’t for everyone and I definitely want you to have all the facts before you decide if this is might help you too.

L-GLUTAMINE COULD BE THE SUPPLEMENT FOR YOU.

And hey, if you have concerns that it may not be for you, I highly recommend you seek out the advice of a supplement literate doctor—like one who specializes in integrative or functional medicine, maybe a naturopath who specializes in IBD. These are the doctors who will be able to tell you if l-glutamine is the right choice for you.

Here’s what we’re going to cover today:

–A little history of l-glutamine (what it is and where it came from as a supplement)

–The benefits of l-glutamine (it’s not just about the gut)

–Possible food sources for l-glutamine that can help everyone with IBD

–If you decide it’s worth a go, how do the experts recommend you use it

–Who l-glutamine is not for (you’ll definitely want to pay attention to this part)

–And lastly, the latest, unbiased scientific research on our supplement star of the day, l-glutamine.

Let’s dig in.

WHAT EXACTLY IS L-GLUTAMINE?

[06:18] Using l-glutamine as a supplement started with weightlifters. They use it to help them repair muscle after workouts. L-glutamine is an amino acid, and amino acids are the building block of proteins. It’s proteins at their smallest level. Proteins are made up of many amino acids like lysine, GABA, proline, serine… glutamine is one of those amino acid protein builders. And glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in our bloodstream. Although we don’t feel it, we use large amounts of l-glutamine in our bodies.

So in the beginning days of l-glutamine as a supplement, many people were using it to help them build muscle and lose weight, but as it turns out, l-glutamine is much more than that.

L-glutamine has the power to help us remove waste (like ammonia that can build up in our body), it helps us build proteins, it also helps to stabilize blood sugar so we have less food cravings, l-glutamine also plays a big role in the health of our bones, skin, blood vessels, hair and nails. So many parts of our body rely on this key in amino acid for health and vitality.

All of those benefits are great right? But what you’re waiting for is the gut benefit, how can it help your Crohn’s or colitis? One of the best ways it’s been found to help is with mucosal lining repair– the repair of the lining of the digestive system. We know when we have IBD this digestive lining is impaired. And when is lining is impaired, we are at greater risk for something called leaky gut.

IBD AND LEAKY GUT.

Have you heard of leaky gut? It’s become kind of a buzzword to encompass anything that’s wrong with your gut, but leaky gut is real and it can be a big challenge for those of us with Crohn’s and colitis. Technically called intestinal permeability, leaky gut happens when the tight junctions that keep the intestines sealed, become loose allowing bacteria, undigested food particles, and toxins to pass from the gut into the bloodstream.

Leaky gut can be a real problem and is a huge part of where autoimmunity begins. Since Crohn’s and colitis are autoimmune diseases this could definitely have played a huge role in the early stages of the onset of your disease and may be continuing to play a role even today.

Now, most people IBD or not, don’t get enough l-glutamine from food sources alone. And of course for IBDers, this is a bigger problem for us as we have difficulty digesting and absorbing the nutrients in the food we eat leading to malnutrition. So we may need more l-glutamine for sure.

As we wrap up what l-glutamine is, I want to make sure that you know that l-glutamine is not a cure all. I’m not saying, take this snake oil and you will be cured. L-glutamine has the potential to be part of your wheel of wellness that I love to talk about. That invisible wheel that’s rolling along with you everywhere you go, keeping all of your healing spokes turning and working for you. L-glutamine is a part of your wheel of wellness that includes food, lifestyle, other supplements, mindset, providers that support you, and medication when you need extra support.

TELL ME ABOUT THE BENEFITS.

[11:13] Now that we’re clear on what l-glutamine is, let’s get into its benefits in real detail so you can see (in real life) what it has the potential to do for you and most importantly how you feel.

I mentioned earlier that l-glutamine has benefits beyond the gut and I want to take a moment to point them out because they can be just as vital for your health. In scientific studies l-glutamine has been shown to boost the immune system, help fight infections and diseases, help in balancing pH levels in the body, it’s been shown to boost brain health and of course, there’s of those gut healing benefits as well. L glutamine has been helpful for gut conditions are like IBD, IBS, diverticulitis, and other autoimmune diseases as well.

Within the digestive system, a glutamine can help you rebuild and repair your intestinal lining. And if you don’t mind me getting just a little bit technical for a minute, I think it’s really cool with how l-glutamine is repairing the intestinal integrity of your digestive lining.

Check this out- L-glutamine supports barrier function, so that is talking about the leaky gut component so many of us have where the tight junctions in the digestive system open to allow food particles and bacteria and toxins into the blood stream. L-glutamine actually has the power to strengthen the barrier between your digestive wall and the bloodstream. Goodbye leaky gut!

If you know you have leaky gut, this is big news. Something that can actually help after most likely years of struggle. And if this is a new concept for you or you aren’t sure if leaky gut fits for you—some of the signs you have leaky gut include: fatigue, food sensitivities (especially gluten and dairy but other sensitivities as well), skin rashes, headaches, mood disorders, brain fog, thyroid challenges, diarrhea or constipation, SIBO, or candida.

And let’s stay here for just a sec with this concept of l-glutamine helping to repair your leaky gut. I mentioned that one of the symptoms that you have leaky gut is food sensitivities. Leaky gut is the gateway to food sensitivities. Being sensitive to various foods is really common for those of us with IBD, whether you know your sensitivities or not. It’s really common for me to hear a client say I don’t know what I’m sensitive to, everything seems to bother me.

Can you relate to that? Leaky gut could be at play here.

When we use supplements like l-glutamine to repair our leaky gut, we can become less sensitive to the toxins in our bloodstream. Just a simple act of repairing the gut lining and improving our leaky gut can be enough to lessen our food sensitivities. And for you in real life, that means less bloating and gas after you eat, less diarrhea, less skin rashes, less brain fog, forgetfulness, anxiety, depression (yep, leaky gut can affect mood too), and the list of benefits goes on and on and on…

L-glutamine doesn’t stop there with its benefits though. It’s also responsible for cellular reproduction in the intestines which is really important for us when we’re trying to rebuild healthy cells within the gut. Healthy cells mean less inflammation and less IBD symptoms. And not only does it help you rebuild healthy cells, l-glutamine helps you rebuild them fast. In research studies, l-glutamine has been shown to help your enterocytes (a type of cell in your intestinal lining) regenerate and repair in a manner of just a few days.

The last technical, but really cool implication of the powerful impact of l-glutamine for those of us with IBD is that it can reduce proinflammatory cytokines. If you’re really familiar with Covid-19, you’ve probably heard about cytokines before because the virus can produce a cytokine storm in our bodies. Cytokines are signaling molecules that get released from our T helper cells. When we have IBD, our inflammatory cytokines can spiral out of control, creating a cytokine storm (just like Covid does) and that keeps our disease active. Lowering the inflammatory cytokines helps the T helper cells calm down so we can ditch that flare and get into remission.

Sealing those tight junctions and repairing your leaky gut

Improving cell integrity so you have a healthier digestive system

And lowering your inflammation levels at the gut level…

Imagine how you could feel with l-glutamine working for you!

THE BEST L-GLUTAMINE FOOD SOURCES.

Now, I mentioned that we can get added amounts of much needed l-glutamine in supplement form, but before we talk about how to use l-glutamine in supplement form, I want you to know that you can also get some of this powerful amino acid in the foods you eat.

[17:34] Your best food source of l-glutamine is from bone broth—the most gut healing gem there is. After that, you can also find good amounts of l-glutamine in grass fed beef, chicken turkey, wild caught cod and salmon, venison, eggs, dairy products, as well as asparagus, beans, lentils, spinach, beets and broccoli rabe.

Are any of those food sources up your alley?

If you like any of these foods and you can make them in a way that is easy to digest, especially the bone broth, go for it because every little bit of l-glutamine is a good thing. But I do want to stress that it would be next to impossible to get all the healing l-glutamine that your digestive system needs in food form. That’s why we supplement.

THE TRICK TO MAKING L-GLUTAMINE WORK FOR YOU.

Supplementing with l-glutamine is not as easy as just popping a pill every day like you might do with your probiotic. There’s definitely some trickiness involved so I want you to pay close attention when we talk about what the experts are saying about how to take l-glutamine. If you’ve been multitasking and I completely get it mom friend, come back to me for this part because you’re really going to want to soak this information up. Maybe even jot down a few notes.

OK, when you buy l-glutamine you want to buy a super high-quality brand. All l-glutamine is not created equal. Before we leave this section of the episode, I’ll definitely share with you a couple good brands that are worth buying, but for now just know that with l-glutamine, quality matters.

You can buy l-glutamine in capsule and powder form, but I highly recommend that you stick with the powder form. The powder can be easily mixed with water and then drunk making it highly digestible and highly absorbable for the gut challenged.  Because what’s the use of taking a supplement if you’re not absorbing it.

I mentioned that the powder can be mixed with water. Just use a small amount of water here, you don’t want to dilute the powder too much. L-glutamine is virtually odorless and tasteless so most people take it with a little bit of water, but if you find that challenging you can also take it with a little bit of juice.  

There’s a lot of research studies on just how much a glutamine to take for IBD. There really is a wide range in what experts say about dosing, but most agree somewhere between 7 to 30 g daily is best. I have to say though that I’ve seen people find significant benefit from 2 g and I’ve also seen people need to go up to 40 g with l-glutamine. It’s very individual.

To find the best amount for you, you’ll want to start very slow. My clients will tell you that I am the queen of slow whether it comes to adding in new foods or starting a supplement regime. Starting slow allows you to make the necessary adjustments early before you have significant side effects. To start with l-glutamine, start very small—I’m talking 1/8 of a teaspoon small. If you’re able to tolerate that without any problems for three days it’s time to bump up to ¼ teaspoon, stay there for three days and then ½ teaspoon, wait three days then ¾ of a teaspoon, and continue at that amount for another three days and bump up to 1 teaspoon.

See the pattern here? You are starting at a very low dose and working your way up every three days. It can be a tedious process but it’s so so so important to know what the best dose is for you. Going slow and assessing how you’re doing every day is the way to figure that out.

I mentioned a wide range in dosing for l-glutamine, between 7 g all the way up to 30 g. Personally, I wouldn’t want to take any more of a supplement than I needed. That’s why I always recommend starting very low and working your way up slowly until you start to see results. There’s no need to take more than your body needs. Knowing that you’re having results with l-glutamine will mean less diarrhea, less abdominal pain, less bloating and less gas… all those lovely gut symptoms.

Since we don’t really talk in grams in America, let me just give you a quick teaspoon to gram guide so you know about how much I’m talking about here. 1 teaspoon is about 5 g, 2 teaspoons is around 10 g, and 8 teaspoons is about 40 g. I am including a teaspoon to gram reference guide in the show notes to help you out.

When you start with a very low amount and work your way up slowly, side effects can be few and far between. One thing that I want to point out is that some people do have some mild abdominal cramping when they’re just starting out with l-glutamine. This isn’t severe, this is on the very mild end and it usually goes away within a few days. Some people may also have a few days adjustment with their bowels after starting l-glutamine. It’s not unusual to have a little bit of loose stool in the beginning. Anything other than that is not normal and a sign that the supplement is not for you.

I haven’t seen research to back this up, but I’ve noticed that clients who have diarrhea tend to do better with l-glutamine when they take it on an empty stomach. Clients who are dealing more with constipation can take l-glutamine with food. So base whether you take it with food or without on your current bowel symptoms.

I also want to mention that you do not need to refrigerate l-glutamine. It is fine in a cabinet or pantry. A cool dry place is all l-glutamine needs. When buying glutamine, I mentioned that there are brands that are better than others. No matter which brand you buy, I would not choose a combination supplement. You may have seen supplements like this before called Gut Repair or Digestive Ease. These aren’t real brands, I’m just making these up. But in supplements like these, l-glutamine is one of several gut healing supplements included on the label. This may work for people with mild got troubles, but I find that people with IBD have really sensitive guts and need to take these types of supplements one at a time. Brands of l-glutamine that are packaged with just this one supplement that are also a very high-quality include Thorne Research, Jarrow, and Source Naturals. Thorne Research is probably my favorite, but the others are high-quality as well.

THE PROBLEM WITH LONG TERM L-GLUTAMINE USE.

[26:45] When it comes to long term use of l-glutamine, it isn’t something that has been studied very much. I’ve spoken with several doctors and nutritionists about l-glutamine and I’ve always been told that it is considered safe long-term.  But I did find one study with interesting results on long-term l-glutamine use. This particular study showed that long-term use of l-glutamine at high doses (over 40 g so we’re talking really high doses here) can cause alterations to the amino acid transport system in our body.

That’s why I recommend getting in and getting out with l-glutamine. Bump up to the lowest dose that does the job and when you are symptom-free for three months, take a break. Enough healing may have taken place that you don’t need it for a period of time.

One last really important note for my multitasking mamas out there, stay with me just a few more minutes… it’s important for you to know that l-glutamine is not for everyone. Most people do very well with this supplement, but it is not recommended for people who have a history of heart racing, chronic headaches, and also may not be for people with chronic anxiety. Also, l-glutamine has not been studied in pregnant or nursing moms.

If any of these symptoms are familiar to you, I would just always check with a doctor who knows about supplements like an integrative doctor, functional medicine doctor or a naturopath who works with supplements to bring G.I. health into balance on a regular basis. They can tell you if l-glutamine is a good choice for you or not.

Bottom line here is that if you feel worse when you take l-glutamine and you’ve also used the path I suggested with starting low and bumping up very very slowly, this is not the supplement for you. Like I said, although it works for most, it’s not for everyone.

The last thing I want to share with you before we wrap up for the day is from my research geek brain. There are so many wonderful research studies about l-glutamine and I’d love for you to check them out. I have attached several in the show notes section. Feel free to check them out, but if you want a reader’s digest version let me tell you what several of these studies found.

L-GLUTAMINE RESEARCH REVEALS THE TRUTH.

Here’s some statements taken directly from the research:

“Amino acids, as therapeutic candidates, may ultimately help to maintain intestinal integrity in IBD patients.” So, this study found that amino acids, l-glutamine is an amino acid, has been shown to help maintain the digestive health of IBD patients.

“Amino acids can increase intestinal friendly microbiota.” So this study looked at in the bacterial balance in the digestive system and found that amino acids can help increase friendly bacteria which leads to a healthier digestive system and less symptoms for us.

One IBD specific study found that, “Glutamine supplementation is beneficial in improving disease symptoms, intestinal structure and barrier function.” Improving Crohn’s and colitis symptoms, improving the structure of our gut, and improving leaky gut as well. Again, those findings have incredible potential as we work through healing our illness.

And lastly, I want to share with you the findings from another glutamine research study. The study found that, “Glutamine, the most abundant amino acid in the blood stream, is the primary fuel source for enterocytes and is essential for gut homeostasis and health.” So,l- glutamine, the supplement we’ve been talking about this episode, is the primary source of energy for the cells in our intestinal wall and not only that, but it’s also essential for the balance in our gut and our overall health.

Bam, drop the mic, I couldn’t say it any better than that.

WHAT L-GLUTAMINE IS NOT.

Today we learned about a powerful supplement that may be of benefit to help you bring your IBD symptoms into control. L-glutamine isn’t a wonder drug and it isn’t a magic pill. It also doesn’t work for everyone. But the research doesn’t lie and it’s time someone told you about the potential benefits of this supplement. You’re certainly not hearing about it from your GI doctor.  

If you want to get really good solid information about gut healing supplements like l-glutamine, I highly recommend you seek the advice of a doctor trained in what supplements can do for those of us with Crohn’s or colitis. An integrative doctor, a functional medicine doctor or a naturopath who specializes in G.I. disorders. They’ll tell you about the benefits of l-glutamine because they’ve seen it work in their practice over and over.

[32:33] Look at the resources and the research I’ve included in the show notes to help you decide if you are a good candidate for l-glutamine. Remember, I’m here for you as well. If you have any questions about l-glutamine, don’t hesitate to reach out. DM me on Facebook @TheIBDHealthCoach. I’m looking forward to connecting with you. I definitely don’t have all the answers, but I am a research queen and I’ll be happy to help you make the best decision for you.

Alright mom friend, that’s a wrap on The Cheeky Podcast for this week. Looking forward to connecting with you again soon. Until we meet again, 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.

[34:05] 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.

No More Worry You’re Doing it Wrong: Gluten Freedom in 5 Simple Steps

You’ve made the decision to go gluten free. And I have to commend you because it’s a great decision. If you’re going to start quieting your Crohn’s or colitis symptoms with food, glorious food, then eliminating gluten really is your perfect starting place.

But now that you’ve made the decision to eat gluten free, how do you get started? That’s what this episode of The Cheeky Podcast for Moms with IBD is all about.

If gluten free is your destination, I’ve got you covered.

We’re talking about:

  • Three, must know, facts about how the FDA treats gluten in the United States
  • Your #1 resource for finding hidden gluten
  • The ideal length of time to give your new gluten free life before deciding if it’s working
  • What are your next steps if eating gluten free doesn’t work

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll have everything you need to get started on your gluten free journey with the confidence and perseverance you need to make it work for you.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [08:55] Beware of these whole foods that you might not think contain gluten
  • [11:14] Three, must know, facts about how the FDA treats gluten in the United States
  • [13:10] Why looking for the word “gluten” on food products doesn’t help
  • [14:56] How ignoring the Nutrition Facts Panel is the key to gluten free food shopping
  • [17:30] Your #1 resource for finding hidden gluten
  • [19:55] Where all the naturally gluten free foods hang out in the grocery store
  • [25:16] How meal planning can save you time and money as you start your new gluten free life
  • [28:47] Picking your gluten free date is the best way to ensure you get started
  • [30:20] The ideal length of time to give your new gluten free life before deciding if it’s working
  • [31:58] What are your next steps if eating gluten free doesn’t work
  • [27:47] The best way to take your gut healing journey to the next level

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

SIGN UP FOR THE FREE CROHN’S AND COLITIS MEAL PLANNING MADE EASY WORKSHOP HERE

Workshop going on LIVE July 22, 2021

DM me on Facebook for Your Hidden Gluten Ingredients List

The Gut Love Community

Episode 34: Who Else is Confused About Gluten?

Episode Transcript:

You’ve made the decision to go gluten free. And I have to commend you because it’s a great decision. If you’re going to start quieting your Crohn’s or colitis symptoms with food, glorious food, then eliminating gluten really is your perfect starting place.

But now that you’ve made the decision to eat gluten free, how do you get started? That’s what this episode is all about.

If gluten free is your destination, I’ve got you covered.

Gluten freedom in 5 simple steps, here we go!

[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]

[01:26] Welcome dear one, we meet again. I’m so happy that we’re sharing this time together. Crohn’s and colitis can be a monster, and here we are lifting each other up, talking about this invisible disease no one seems to really gets but us. I don’t know about you, but in my life, it’s rare that I find someone who gets what my life is like as a mom with IBD. I’m so grateful that we have this opportunity to connect today. Let’s use our time together to take big, bold IBD action steps!

Sound good?

So, something I know, when you make a decision as big as trying a gluten free diet, I know that you’ve given this a lot of thought. You’re sick and tired of being on the medication merry-go-round with little to no results. You’re IBD isn’t getting better. Toxic medication after toxic medication is offered to you as a cover up for your symptoms. All of the diarrhea, the abdominal pain, the bloating and gas after you eat, the soul sucking fatigue, and the treatments that give you with nasty side effects, leave you feeling that you’re never going to be the mom you know you can be and deserve to be.

And I know something about the way you’re feeling because I felt exactly that way back in 2007 when I started planning my gluten free journey. Man was it tough back then. No one knew what gluten meant, I didn’t know what gluten meant. I had never heard of it before. It was rough navigating this new world.

In this episode, our focus is on how to get started when you already know what gluten is and why it’s a good idea to remove it from your diet. But if you’re still thinking about the what and why of gluten, I highly recommend you go back to episode 34: Who Else is Confused About Gluten? That’s the episode where I start at the beginning and lay out exactly what gluten is and why you want to avoid it. You can think of that episode as part I and this episode as part II on your way to gluten freedom. Both episodes do stand alone, but together they are golden.

Before we move into my 5 step plan, the “how” on your road to gluten freedom, let me give the gluten free 10 cent tor. You’ll want to go back and take a full listen to episode 34, but this is at least the gist.

THE WART-NOSED WITCH YOU WANT TO STAY AWAY FROM.

The biggest thing I want you to know about gluten before we get to your 5 steps is that gluten and IBD just don’t mix. I’m not going to sugar coat it. You know I’m a straight shooter so I’m telling you straight, no cap. Out of the hundreds of IBDer’s I’ve had the pleasure to meet and chat with in the gut love community, I’ve rarely met someone who’s rockin’ their IBD remission on gluten.

And that might sound like really bad news to you, but I prefer to actually look at is as a positive. If you remain gluten free—and it’s so much easier today than ever before—look at the life you can have! Less gut pain, less trips to the bathroom, less bloating, less gas, less painful joints and skin rashes, etc, etc… Powerful stuff.

Remember that gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and other grains. Like I said, gluten and IBD don’t mix. Think of gluten as the wart-nosed witch. And it’s the food grade equivalent of white school gluten—all sticky, gooey, gelatinous, and generic. And the gluten of just 50 years ago, isn’t the gluten you’re ingesting today due to farming practices to yield more and grow faster crops. Wheat and other glutenous grains are not your friend.

[06:17] Gluten can create so much damage to our intestine that we flare up, and worse, it can then move into our bloodstream and inflame our joints, our skin, and even our brain. Gluten has been linked to brain fog, lack of focus, anxiety, depression, ADHD, headaches, even neurological challenges like dementia and Alzheimer’s.

OK, that’s really the reader’s digest version of your gluten free why not, but enough to catch you up so we can move on to the how. After listening to this episode, head over to 34 for the complete picture. You’ll be glad you did.

YOU’RE COMPLETE GLUTEN FREE PLUGIN PLAY SYSTEM.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for a system, a framework, a step-by-step guide, a tutorial. Just give me the steps so I can “have at it.”. Gluten freedom in 5 simple steps is a complete plug-in play system, so follow it to a T, and you’ll be moving on to gluten freedom in no time.

Step #1: Know what you’re looking for.

[07:34] Knowing what gluten is, doesn’t always hep you know how to look for it. And knowing what to look for is all about reading the food label. We’re going to get there, I’m going to get you all set up for what to look for on the food label, but I also want you to be able to find gluten if the food doesn’t have a food label so let’s start there. If there’s no label, the best thing to remember is that food in its whole and natural state doesn’t contain gluten.

We’re talking plain fruit, plain vegetables, plain protein (beef, chicken, turkey, pork, fish, and seafood). Eggs are gluten free, plain butter is gluten free, plain oils (without any seasonings) are gluten free. Plain milk and other dairy products are gluten free, plain unseasoned nuts and seeds are gluten free. And there are some grains that don’t contain gluten either like rice and quinoa. See a pattern here? Plain, unmarinated, unseasoned, unflavored whole foods are gluten free.

BEWARE OF THESE HIDDEN SOURCES OF GLUTEN.

In some cases though, even with whole foods, I want to you be wary. Like yogurt, which is a dairy product, is gluten free, but topped with granola, not gluten free. Some yogurt flavorings contain gluten. Plain meat is gluten free, but pre-marinated or pre-seasoned meat may not necessarily be gluten free. Often times, it isn’t. A block of plain cheddar cheese, gluten free, but store bought shredded cheese in a package is often not gluten free because they add flour as an anti-caking agent to keep the shreds from sticking together. Veggies without dip or salad dressing is gluten free, but add the dip, and now you’re likely getting glutened.

See how adding in one ingredient to your plain, whole food can change everything. That doesn’t mean you have to eat everything plain. Hell to the no! It just means you either need to read the label and look for the words gluten free, or add your own seasonings at home. There’s amazing flavor you can add with your own seasonings. Eating GF can be amazingly flavorful and delish. In fact, I’m willing to bet a whole new world of flavor is just around the corner for you. Just you wait and see.

In step #1, we found out what to look for. In step 2, we go looking for it.

FORGET TH BEAR HUNT, WE’RE GOING ON A GLUTEN HUNT.

We look for it by knowing how to read food labels. We become a gluten free super sleuth. You already know how to look for gluten when there isn’t a label, now we tackle looking for gluten when there’s a label attached, and that label on our packaged, box, or canned food, unfortunately, that label is meant to confuse us.

When it comes to food labels and gluten, there’s three things that are most important for you to know to break through the confusion about what contains gluten and what doesn’t.

#1: In the United States, gluten-free food labeling is completely voluntary. This is not the case in every country, so if you don’t live in the U.S. you’ll want to check what your countries regulations are for transparency with gluten containing foods. But in the U.S., there is no FDA (food and drug administration) mandate that requires a product to say it’s gluten free. So just because a product doesn’t say gluten-free doesn’t mean that it isn’t. For example, you don’t typically see the words gluten free on a carton of eggs, but they are naturally gluten free. But, #2, if the product does say gluten-free you can be sure that it contains less than “20 ppm of gluten” and trust me when I tell you that’s pretty low. For most people who are gluten-free including Celiac’s, that is usually low enough.  #3: The last thing I want you to know about reading food labels is that the FDA does not require a front label of a product to say that it contains gluten.

If this doesn’t clear things up for you yet for guaranteed gluten free shopping, don’t worry, we’ll get there. Understanding gluten and food labeling is a tricky task. That’s why knowing how to read a food label is about the most important thing for us to talk about. You just can’t go 100% gluten free unless you understand food labeling.

WHY THERE’S NO POINT IN LOOKING FOR THE WORD “GLUTEN.”

So right about now, you might be thinking, can I just look for the word gluten. Well, no, because remember, food manufactures aren’t required to tell us that their product contains gluten. In fact, they pretty much never do. The ingredients, though, never lie. That’s why it’s up to us to be gluten free super sleuths to know if an ingredient has gluten in it. For example, ingredients like Brewer’s yeast, semolina, spelt, and dextrimaltose all contain gluten. When you know which words = gluten, you’re living the life of gluten freedom.

Let’s talk about how we do this.

[14:57] It all starts with food labels. We need to understand that a food label has three parts. And when I’m talking about “food labels” I’m talking about the nutrition facts panel. That’s the food label I’m talking about. It might be on the side of the product, it might be on the back of the packaging… it’s there somewhere because the nutrition facts is required by the FDA (the food and drug administration) so just move the box or package or can around until you find the nutrition facts.

There three distinct parts of a food label and they include the nutrition facts panel, the ingredient statement, and the Allergan statement. Most of us are taught to read the nutrition facts panel where you see how much fat or carbohydrate, salt or sugar a product contains, but when it comes to gluten, I’m going to tell you to ignore that part. The two parts we are most interested in are the ingredient statement and the Allergan statement.

The first place you’ll always go to look for gluten is the Allergan statement. It is at the bottom of the nutrition facts panel. One of the allergens that the FDA requires be listed there is wheat. If you see the word wheat in the allergens statement you know that this product contains gluten. And you’re going to step away from the package.

YOUR #1 HIDDEN GLUTEN RESOURCE.

Now I wish that this was a full proof way to avoid all gluten but unfortunately, as we’ve learned, gluten comes in many forms. It’s not just found in wheat. So after you look at the allergens statement, it’s time to look at the ingredient list. Check for obvious sources of gluten like wheat and barley and rye, but also look for that hidden gluten that I just mentioned. Those words that don’t say gluten, but they mean that there’s a gluten in the product. Now there are way too many hidden gluten words for me to tell you all of them on this episode, but I do have a complete list. If you want a copy of my Hidden Gluten “Never Eat” Unsafe Ingredient List, feel free to DM me on Facebook and I will send a copy your way. On Facebook I am @TheIBDHealthCoach.

I love chatting with you over there on my new Facebook page so hit me up and I will be happy to send it your way. @TheIBDHealthCoach.

Now that you know how to read the food label to check for the obvious and the not so obvious gluten, it’s kick step 2 (looking for gluten) into high gear. It’s time to put your newfound knowledge into practice. Let’s start with your pantry. Look at all of your boxed, packaged, and canned foods. Check out their labels and see what contains gluten. You’re going to be really surprised at all of the pantry foods that contain gluten. Ones you never even suspected.

Soy sauce? Yep, contains gluten. Most salad dressings? Yep, contains gluten. Teriyaki sauce? Yep, contains gluten. Now that’s not to say that we can’t find gluten-free version of these foods. There is gluten free soy sauce, it’s called tamari. There’s lots of gluten-free salad dressings out there, you just have to know where to find them. When we start to look for gluten free alternatives, we see that they are everywhere. We just have to know where to look.

Once you accomplish a pantry clean out, it’s time to go to the grocery store. Step #2 is all about going out and looking for it, gluten free food that is, so go for it, take a trip to the grocery store and start checking out different foods. You don’t have to buy anything during this trip, this is more of a reconnaissance to see if you can find foods that don’t contain gluten. Remember, your best bet is going to be looking for foods that are naturally gluten-free. And those are the foods that I mentioned earlier. The vegetables, meats, fruits, nuts, seeds, eggs, and yogurt. Food that’s in his whole and natural, plain state is usually gluten-free.

THE POWER OF THE PERIMETER.

[19:55] This is the kind of food that doesn’t come in a can, a package, or a box. This is the kind of food you find on the perimeter of the grocery store. Try to stay here as much as possible and there will be no second-guessing whether a food has gluten in it or not.

When it comes to the grocery store isles, the boxes, the cans, the packaging, always look at your food label. You now know how to read it. So, look to see if it contains gluten. If it does, you know it’s time to step away from the package and move on to something else.

I want you to come back from your reconnaissance mission with a sense of pride because you did it mama. You took an amazing step, the knowledge building step. What’s that they say about knowledge and insight? It’s half the battle.

Step 2 to gluten freedom, done.

In step #1 we found out what we were looking for, and step #2 we went looking for it, now in step #3 it’s time to make a plan for gluten freedom.

MAKE A PLAN.

Will you go all in or maybe dip a tow in and go gluten-free meal by meal? Maybe this week you’ll try breakfast, and next week you’ll add lunch and so on. There’s no perfect way to do this and going all in doesn’t necessarily mean you’re more committed than the folks who take the dip a toe in approach. Remember when it comes to healing our IBD, we have to match our symptoms and our lifestyle. Keep your lifestyle in mind when you’re deciding what you want to commit to and how long you want to take to commit.

The planning step will also involve your family. Is it just you going gluten-free or is the whole family going for it as well? Going gluten free is healthy for everyone so there’s no reason why everyone in the family can’t go gluten-free with you. It’s really a personal choice and of course it involves that lifestyle component again. Do you have time to cook separate meals for different family members? Will you feel more supported if family members are doing the gluten-free life with you?

I know what you’re going through here because I remember not that long ago trying to make this decision for my family as well. Most of the food we have in our house is gluten-free, but occasionally some pasta or bread with gluten in it will make its way into our house. I don’t intentionally make things that have gluten in it, but I also don’t want to make everyone feel resentful of my diet. I try to walk a fine line and stick with things that are naturally gluten-free. That way no one feels like they’re missing out.

I remember my client Penny telling me that when she decided to go gluten-free, they had a big family meeting to talk about it. Penny had teenagers and she really wanted to get their opinion before she brought all gluten-free food home. To her surprise, Penny’s teenagers said they really wanted to support her. Plus, they were really into sports and being physically fit so they thought that it might be a good idea for them to try as well. That’s what worked for Penny’s family. Everyone’s family is different but it’s good to take some time in the planning phase to figure out what works best for your family situation.

MEAL PLANNING IS KEY FOR GLUTEN FREE SUCCESS.

Once you decide whether you’re going to go all in on day one or take the escalator approach down to the finish line, and you decide whether your family will eat gluten-free with you or if it’ll just be you riding the gluten-free train, it’s time for some meal planning. It’s time to figure out what you’ll be eating and when for at least the first week I’d say. Deciding on the meals you’ll eat, the ingredients you’ll need for the meals you want to make, making a list for the grocery store, heading to the grocery store to buy what you need (you already did the reconnaissance so this should be fairly easy), and then coming home and meal prepping those meals because that’s what’s going to save you time and money in this whole gut healing adventure that you’re a part of now.

[25:16] Don’t let the whole meal planning part of your new eating plan overwhelm you. This is the place I see many moms stop, but it can be done. If you’re completely new to meal planning on an IBD eating plan and if you want to get a jump start on the meal planning part of eating gluten free (the deciding what to eat, figuring out the ingredients, meal prepping it all)… if you want some help figuring this out just a little bit faster (and you’re listening to this episode in real time), I want you to know that I have a brand-new live training all about Crohn’s and colitis meal planning made easy.

And it’s all going down tonight. July 22, 2021, at 5 PM EST. If you want to join me live for my meal planning workshop, all you have to do is go to karynhaley.com/mealplanning. That’s karynhaley.com/mealplanning. A replay will be available so if you aren’t able to join us live, still sign up and I will send a replay your way. I hope you’ll join me live though because there’s just a wonderful energy that happens in the live exchange and you’ll also be able to get your questions answered in real time. And one last reason to join live is that today is my birthday, so I am giving away some extra special bonuses for everyone who shows up live. The Crohn’s and Colitis Meal Planning workshop happening tonight. Hope to see you there.

OK, so you gluten-free goddess, you know what you’re looking for when it comes to gluten and you have gone to look for it. You’ve also made an amazing plan that includes how you go about it, will the family join you, and you’ve done all the meal planning and meal prep and you’re ready to start eating gluten free. What’s next?

TIME TO TAKE THE GLUTEN FREE PLUNGE.

Step #4 is next. And Step #4 on your gluten-freedom plan is to go for it, dive in. Whatever diving means for you. So many people that I see start a gut healing diet like gluten-free with gusto, only to quit a few days later when they don’t see results. We know that Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was your gut health. Going gluten free isn’t the kind of thing where you wake up after a week and say oh my goodness I am healed! So, when you dive in, dive in for the long-haul.

When you follow the steps that I’ve laid out for you today, you’ll be prepared to start your gluten-free life. And preparation is really the name of the game when it comes to sticking with a gut healing diet. Those who go in knowing exactly what gluten is and where to find it, those who prepare their weekly menu ahead of time, and meal prep ahead of time are much more likely to be successful in the long run.

When will you dive into gluten freedom? Go head, think about it right now while we’re chatting. Tomorrow? In one week? In one month? When will the time be right for you? And don’t just say a season or a month, I want you to pick the day out. August 1 has a nice ring to it doesn’t it? Or maybe you feel like the kids need to be back in school before you can commit, that’s OK. How about September 1st?

Are the wheels turning? Did you pick a day? Awesome, now put that date on your calendar. All you need to do to make that your reality is go through steps 1, 2 and 3 before that date. You can do it, remember get in touch if you want some help. That’s what I’m here for.

OK, last step, step #5.

You’re rocking that gluten-free life. You’re all in. You’re not cheating, you’re giving it your all, the kinks have been worked out and you are feeling really confident about planning, cooking, and eating gluten-free.

It’s time to assess.

[30:20] Ideally, you’ll give gluten freedom a minimum of three months before you take a look at how it’s going. Now, I wouldn’t expect miracles in three months, but hopefully you will see some improvement in how you feel. Researchers tell us that gluten can stay in the body for up to six months, but the three-month mark is a great place to just step back and ask yourself, how’s it going?

Do I have any less diarrhea?

Do I have less bloating and gas after mealtime?

Do I have more energy, less headaches or brain fog?

Did the skin rashes clear up?

The answers to these questions or questions like these will help you determine if gluten-free is worth continuing to help keep your gut symptoms and you’re beyond the gut symptoms in check.

WHAT IF YOU SAY, “YES!”

You might say yes, I feel fantastic. I feel the best I’ve ever felt in my life! If that’s the case, you’re going to keep rocking your gluten-free life. You’re going to feel really grateful that you stumbled onto something that can really protect your health and ensure your gut loving future.

Or, although it’s highly unlikely, you might say nope, this didn’t really help me at all. I gave it a fair shot, I didn’t cheat, not even once, but it just didn’t help me. Know that this is not the end of the line for you. There’s so many healing mechanisms when it comes to Crohn’s and colitis. Keep searching and keep trying new things within the food, lifestyle, mindset realm because I know that there is a path out there for you.

And if you’re like many of my clients, you’ll say to yourself wow, this gluten-free life is helping me. I’m not exactly where I want to be, but I do see some benefit. I wonder what else I could do to help me feel even better. What can I combine with living gluten-free to help me feel even better?

IS IT TIME TO MAKE TWEAKS TO YOUR WHEEL OF WELLNESS?

I’m not gonna lie to you mama, Crohn’s and colitis are both a complicated beast. There isn’t usually one healing fix. Using a gluten-free diet can be life-changing, but it usually is one spoke in your wheel of wellness. I’ve talked about your wheel of wellness before on this podcast, but we all have this invisible wheel rolling along beside us as we move about our life. This wheel has many spokes on it, just like a bike wheel. One of those spokes might be eating gluten free, another might be some type of daily movement, another might be you’re a doctor, another for meditation or another spiritual practice, and another might be a health coach like me. Healing takes a village and your wheel of wellness gives you a village of health.

Step five in your gluten freedom plan gives you the power to assess where you’re at with your wheel of wellness, to add spokes when you need them and change out the spokes that are no longer serving you.

Step #5, assessing where you’re at is a step you’ll come back to over and over on your IBD journey. I’ve had Crohn’s for 34 years and I’m constantly coming back to step 5, making tweaks and moving forward again.

I wish I could tell you that going gluten free is the cure for Crohn’s and Colitis. The truth is, it’s not a cure, but it definitely can be a game changer. Let it be a game changer for you when you follow these 5 steps.

[34:38] Let’s go over them one last time.

Step #1 Know what you’re looking for (know what gluten is and where it hides).

Step #2 Go looking for it (in your pantry and in the grocery store) and that all starts with knowing how to read your food label.

Step #3 Make a plan (a plan that includes not just your symptoms but your lifestyle, one that takes your family into account, and one that includes meal planning)

Step #4 Dive in with gusto and give it your all, no cheats

Step #5 Asses (not after 3 days, not after 1 week, but after a minimum of 3 months of consistently being gluten free- not cheats). Make tweaks to your wheel of wellness and keep moving forward to keep IBD in its place.

Remember my dear friend, if you want to join me live tonight to learn more about how you can take your gluten free diet to the next level and get results faster with meal planning, there’s still time to register for my Crohn’s and Colitis Meal Planning Made Easy Workshop. It all starts at 5pm EST. The link to register is in the show notes or you can go to karynhaley.com/mealplanning.

Hope to see you there.

Until we meet again, 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.

[36:52] 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.

I Cheated on My Gut Healing Diet. Now What?

Gluten free, SCD, Paleo, Dairy free, GAPs… many of us follow some sort of restricted diet to help quiet our Crohn’s and colitis symptoms.

In many cases, diets like these are game changing. They help us digest and absorb the nutrients in our food better, so we then have more energy, less gas, pain, and bloating, less blood on the toilet paper or in the toilet bowl. And diets like these can keep us from using the bathroom 3, 4, 10, 20 times a day.

Results like this are massive when we have IBD. We’d do anything to stay in that place. That’s why when these diets work, we tend to stay on them.

Unless we cheat.

And it’s that cheating part (intentional or unintentional) that we’re going to cover today.

We’re talking about:

  • A cautionary tale of what can happen on your IBD eating plan after the pandemic
  • When well-meaning friends send you down a dark, cheating path
  • The biggest factor in deciding what to do after you cheat on your gut healing diet
  • The one tool you’ll definitely need if you decide you want to intentionally cheat on your IBD diet

And so much more!

After this episode, you’ll know the best methods to try for every type of Eating for IBD cheating you may encounter.

Episode at a Glance:

  • [02:05] All the deets on my Crohn’s and Colitis Meal Planning Made Easy Workshop
  • [05:45] A cautionary tale of what can happen on your IBD eating plan after the pandemic
  • [09:55] When well-meaning friends send you down a dark, cheating path
  • [11:45] The intentional cheater finds out what foods work and what doesn’t work for her
  • [12:45] The biggest factor in deciding what to do after you cheat on your gut healing diet
  • [14:17] What to do when picking up where you left off is not an option
  • [18:18] SCD embarrassment, shame and guilt
  • [20:45] A dairy cheat vs a gluten cheat (which is worse?
  • [22:42] The one tool you’ll definitely need if you decide you want to intentionally cheat on your IBD diet
  • [25:18] What to do when you feel stressed, anxious, or depressed about cheating
  • [27:47] The best way to take your IBD healing journey to the next level

Rate, Review and Subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Mentioned in This Episode

SIGN UP FOR THE FREE CROHN’S AND COLITIS MEAL PLANNING MADE EASY WORKSHOP HERE

Workshop going on LIVE July 22, 2021

MESSAGE ME ON FACEBOOK HERE TO GET YOUR YOUR FOOD-MOOD-POOP JOURNALING SYSTEM

Episode Transcript:

Gluten free, SCD, Paleo, Dairy free, GAPs… many of us follow some sort of restricted diet to help quiet our Crohn’s and colitis symptoms. In many cases, diets like these are game changing. They help us digest and absorb the nutrients in our food better, so we then have more energy, less gas, pain, and bloating, less blood on the toilet paper or in the toilet bowl. And diets like these can keep us from using the bathroom 3, 4, 10, 20 times a day. Results like this are massive when we have IBD. We’d do anything to stay in that place. That’s why when these diets work, we tend to stay on them.

Unless we cheat.

And it’s that cheating part (intentional or unintentional) that we’re going to cover today. What do you do after the cheat?

Here we go!

[01:55] Hey there mama! I’m so happy we’re here together today. We’re diving into a juicy topic and I know you’re going to love it and benefit from it.

Before we get started, I have some hot off the press news to share. I want to tell you that I’ve got a brand new free training that I created just for you. It’s called the Crohn’s & Colitis Meal Planning Made Easy Workshop and it’s going to change the way you eat for your IBD. This workshop is all about how you can save time, money, and stay on track while you successfully use food to heal your gut.

Can I get an amen?

As moms with IBD, we all need that. We need sanity surrounding mealtime. This is a LIVE workshop. I love doing it live so I can be going through it right there with you and you can get your questions answered in real time. And this workshop is extra special for me because it’s all going down on my birthday, Thursday, July 22nd (2021) @ 5pm EST. If you’re interested in joining me to lessen your eating for IBD load, and you want tips that can reduce your stress and the time spent in the kitchen, you’re going to want to join me. The link to register is in the show notes or you can go to karynhaley.com/mealplanning to sign up.  Because Crohn’s & Colitis Meal planning Made Easy is taking place on my birthday, I’ve giving away some special surprises and bonuses to everyone who shows up live. I can’t wait. It’s all happening @5pm EST on July 22nd. Register in the show notes or go to karynhaley.com/mealplanning.

OK, let’s talk about cheating… (dun, dun, dun, dun)

CHEATING HAPPENS.

Let’s face it, cheating happens. It might happen when we go to a family member’s house for dinner or when we travel or eat out at a restaurant. It might even happen in your own home. Sometimes we get glutened or grained when we’re out. In many cases, we don’t plan it, we don’t bring it on ourselves. It’s an accident, but it happens. I’d like to always give you the benefit of the doubt and say it always happens by accident, but as we know, sometimes cheating on our gut healing diet is intentional. We know what we’re doing. We know there might be consequences, but in that moment, the temptation is just too great.

We do it, consequences be damned!

I can tell you right now that you can stop beating yourself up because it doesn’t matter whether it’s intentional or unintentional, cheating happens. Which might make you wonder, what do I do when I cheat? Do I need to take a step back to an earlier step on my diet? And if so, how far back? In cases of the SCD and GAPS, do I need to go back to the introductory diet? What if I feel awful after I cheat or if it sets off a flare up? Or, a scenario we don’t talk about that often– what if I cheat and I feel fine? Do I still need to take a step back?

So many good questions and we’re going to answer all of them today.

A CAUTIONARY TALE OF AN SCDer AFTER PANDEMIC LIFE.

[05:45] I have a client with Crohn’s named April. She started the SCD (the specific carbohydrate diet), during the pandemic quarantine. She wasn’t going out anywhere, she had the time to cook all her food at home… and April saw results. She was moving along swimmingly for about four months, until her part of the world started to open up. Now, April is back to work, she accepted invitations to go to friend’s houses, she enjoyed gatherings with her family at their homes and it was getting really challenging for April to stay on the diet. Before, she was in her own gut healing bubble, but now she had to figure out how to bring SCD out into the world. And for April, this didn’t go so well.

At a family gathering, April’s siblings, mom, grandmother, and other relatives struggled to understand her new diet and she didn’t really know how to explain what she was going through to them. She was the only one in the family with Crohn’s. No one had ever eaten any special diet.

April felt singled out and alone at a gathering of healthy people. She decided to try just a little bit of her grandmother’s matzo ball soup that contained gluten and grains because she thought a few bites wouldn’t hurt. And that turned into potato latkes and the delicious bread her aunt always makes for family gatherings. For a little while, April was thinking she was going to get away with it. Afterall, it was just a small cheat. But 30 minutes later the cramping, bloating and diarrhea hit April like a ton of bricks. April spent the rest of the gathering upstairs in the bathroom feeling guilty, ashamed, and alone.

If you’re on a special diet to help your Crohn’s or colitis, you’ve experienced a situation similar to April’s. We all have. Especially in those early days of a diet when we’re still trying to figure it out for ourselves. It’s a really tricky time and one single misstep can take you down fast.

WHEN A WELL-MEANING FRIEND DOES YOU WRONG.

When I was new to SCD, I remember I had a good friend who wanted to make a meal for me. She said, “Send me the recipes and I’ll make a whole meal for us to share together. I know you’re going through a lot and I want to be there for you.” I thought about this for a long time. It was such a kind invitation from my friend. But I knew that it could be risky. Even with SCD recipes, it could be a disaster. But I wanted to show my friend how grateful I was for her support, so I said yes. I didn’t want to offend her or make her feel like I didn’t trust her. I gave my friend the recipes and hoped for the best.

My friend tried so hard. She made those recipes just as I had instructed. I ate every last bite with delight and so much gratitude for this amazingly kind gesture. And I got through the first few hours no problem. I felt really great after eating her food. I didn’t have any inkling of trouble until I got home when my belly started rumbling and gurgling. I could feel everything that I had just eaten rounding its way through my colon. It all had to come out, and it definitely did. For three days, it came out.

[09:55] It turned out that two of the recipes included bone broth. My friend had bought the bone broth at the store thinking bone broth was bone broth. But unfortunately, the one she used had some additives and artificial ingredients. And I was really sensitive to those ingredients.

After a few days of nonstop trips to the bathroom, my belly flip-flops subsided and I started to feel better. It was a rough few days, but before this all happened, my belly was in good shape. I was in remission. So, I was able to get back on track rather quickly.

WOULD ANYONE INTENTIONALLY CHEAT?

What did I do to get back on track? I’ll tell you in just a minute, but first I want to share one last story with you. This is the story of my client Casey. I didn’t meet her until she was on the Paleo diet for two years. Casey was doing really well. She had maintained remission for over a year and she felt really great. Casey wanted to enlist my help so she could intentionally cheat. She wanted to see if she could start eating foods that weren’t on her eating plan. Casey and I worked for a few months to figure out what her body was ready for and what it just wasn’t. Quinoa, dairy based kefir, and basmati rice… definitely a go. Sourdough bread and oatmeal… definitely not a good option for Casey.

Yep, she was intentionally cheating to see what would happen. She was in a healthy place with her ulcerative colitis, and she wanted to see what would happen. She wanted to expand her diet, she wanted more variety and fun in the food she was eating. There were a lot of things Casey was able to add in because enough intestinal healing had taken place over a period of time. She was rocking her Paleo life and it was time to cheat and see what happened.

Two of the stories I shared with you have to do with unintentional cheating and one of them is an intentional cheating story. But it really doesn’t matter whether the cheating is intentional or unintentional. And for the most part, it doesn’t even matter how long you’ve been on your eating plan. When it comes to cheating on a gut healing diet, what matters is the state of your illness, how you feel, and how long you’ve felt that way. That’s what will determine ultimately how the cheating will affect your body.

APRIL’S STORY GOES FROM BAD TO WORSE.

Let’s go back to April, remember she’s my client with Crohn’s who got caught up in the moment at a family gathering. I told you that April had a really challenging time after she ate food that wasn’t on her eating plan. But what I didn’t share with you yet is that the incident I told you about set off a cascade of behavior for April. She really wanted to commit to her eating plan, but she just kept being put in situations where she got uncomfortable not eating the food that was offered. She went out to a restaurant, she went over to her friend’s house for dinner, she traveled and didn’t bring her SCD legal food with her.

That one event set in motion a series of negative events for April. Even though she was feeling terrible at the time, definitely in flare mode, diarrhea, bloating, gas, lots of abdominal pain, arthritis, blood in the toilet, lots of brain fog and trouble concentrating… she just couldn’t figure out how to get back on track. April lost her way.

This is about as big as a cheat gets. April’s cheat that went on for a few months. April knew that she was not eating in accordance with her gut healing diet and it was the reason she was feeling so awful, but she just couldn’t get back on track.

For April, just starting the SCD again, picking up exactly where she left off, was not an option. April’s intestinal system was in a precarious place. She needed drastic food action and possibly medication to get her flare under control and get back to where she was in her first few months on the diet.

Because so much digestive repair work needed to take place, I recommended that April go back to the beginning, intro and all. On the specific carbohydrate diet, the introduction diet is a very special place. It’s a place of immense digestive lining repair. It’s a place of true healing that will last for a long time if it’s done right. It’s a sucky few days, no doubt about it, but it is just so powerful and it’s a place to go when you have seriously gotten off track.

After completing a few days on the intro diet, April had a choice to make. She could go back to where she was at before she went astray on the SCD and see if that powerful phase was enough to bring her gut into balance, or she could start again in the beginning stages and start to work her way through again.

ARE YOU AND APRIL SIMILAR?

If you’re thinking that April sounds like you, because you’ve been on an eating plan, and it doesn’t have to be the SCD. It could be a gluten-free diet or a dairy free diet, the diet itself doesn’t matter. If April story resonates with you because you’ve taken some time off your gut healing diet and you’re thinking about how to move forward in the best way possible, you’ll have to decide what works best for your symptoms and your lifestyle.

Decisions like this always go back to your symptoms and your lifestyle. How bad are your symptoms? Do you feel like you could tolerate going way back in time again? Do you have the time in your life right now to put in the energy that it might take to get completely back on track?

For April, the decision was really easy. She knew that on her first four months on the SCD, she felt fantastic. She knew it was working for her. She knew if she started again and went through the stages again, she would be in a good place. So, April went back to the intro, and then she started again. It was about a month ago and so far, April is doing really well.

And especially for April, and this might resonate with you as well. Looking at what caused this in the first place. Why did she intentionally and consistently cheat for so long? I told you that when April started her diet, she was in a quarantine bubble. She wasn’t engaging with other people and the diet was easy to follow. Once April moved out into the world, she found it difficult to commit to the SCD and explain what she was doing to her friends and family. didn’t she.

So along with starting over, April and I are looking at why this happened in the first place. And if April’s story resonates with you, I really want you to look inward at this as well. We’re not born with the ability to talk with people about hard subjects. We’re not born with the ability to be non-conformist. Behaviors like this take time to think about and time to cultivate the new habits that will keep us on track.

SCD EMBARRASSMENT, SHAME, AND GUILT.

When I was in my early days of the SCD, I really struggled with this too. I never cheated intentionally, but I felt so uncomfortable being around others and eating food that was different. I used to have such embarrassment about my almond flour bread and homemade condiments, and bringing my lunch bag wherever I went that I would get really red in the face any time I had to order different food at a restaurant, or any time I brought my own food out at someone’s house. I had to go deep within and figure out why this was such a struggle for me, why did I get so embarrassed about being different from others. Once I did that, I actually planned and prepared things that I would say to people about why I ate differently. This might be something for you to do as well in the beginning stages of new diets like SCD and GAPS.

So, to bring April’s story to closure, if her story sounds similar to your story and you’re thinking about where to go back to after a long cheat and after a long period of not feeling well, go back to the beginning. Go back to where it all began. Once enough healing has taken place in the early stages of your eating plan, you can decide if you want to move forward slowly or jump back to where you were when you fell off the wagon.

Remember when I told you about that well intentioned friend who made the meal for me. I felt fine at first, but after I got home the tummy rumbles and the diarrhea set in. I had to get all of it out of my system. The additives and artificial ingredients in the bone broth set off a chain reaction in my body and I had no choice but to just get rid of all the toxins.

A DAIRY CHEAT VS A GLUTEN CHEAT

But remember, when this incident happened to me, I was in a really good place with my gut health. I have been on the specific carbohydrate diet long enough that I was in remission. I wasn’t having daily diarrhea and most days I felt really well. After three days of diarrhea, my stool firmed up again and I was able to jump back on the SCD horse and pick up exactly where I left off. One cheat, a few days of not feeling well, and then back on track.

Are you going strong on your eating plan? Did you cheat once intentionally or unintentionally with negative consequences? Maybe you can pick back up where you left off. It all depends on how the cheat affects you that really depends on what you’re going through at the time. Do you have non-celiac gluten sensitivity for celiac disease along with your IBD and did your cheat include gluten? If so, that’s going to potentially wreak havoc on your gastrointestinal system.

[20:45] A dairy cheat, for those who are sensitive to lactose or casein, may only last a couple days, but for those with non-celiac gluten sensitivity or celiac disease, it’s going to cause a serious problem. Researchers tell us that gluten can last in the body for up to six months. That’s not to say that you will feel like crap for six months, but it will take a while for you to feel like yourself again. That’s the time to be eating very carefully with your digestion and absorption in mind with every single food to eat.

So, when it’s just one cheat, whether it’s intentional or unintentional, what matters most is how you react personally to that food. Is it something that you’re only mildly sensitive to and you can rebound from fairly quickly, or is it something that’s going to set you back potentially for six months. These are the questions that will help you decide where to go next.

HAS ENOUGH HEALING TAKEN PLACE?

On the other hand, if you’re like my client Casey, who’s purposely cheating to see how her body reacts, your decisions may look very different. Casey had been on the Paleo diet for quite a long time and was feeling great. Casey was intentionally wondering what else can I eat? Has enough healing taken place that I can start to add more variety and pizazz to my diet?

Casey decided it was time to cheat. She had been in remission for a year. She took the time to carefully weigh the possibilities and what she might try first. We worked very hard to figure this out together. And when Casey decided to cheat or as I like to think about it– move forward, she went very slowly. She added in one new food at a time and she used my Food-Mood-Poop Journaling System to figure out how the food she was eating made her feel. Remember, some foods worked for Casey and some didn’t. This is bound to be the case for you as well.

If it’s time to start moving forward and cheat with intention and purpose, be the tortoise. There’s no need to rush here. Keep close track of all the new foods you’re adding in and how they affect you. When you think you’re going slow, go slower. Be the tortoise because the tortoise always wins in the end.

How is all of this landing for your mama? Is it giving you a little bit of clarity on what to do when and if you cheat on your gut healing eating plan? I truly hope so.

Whether you’re in the cheat zone, you end up cheating once, or you are intentionally cheating, I highly recommend you use a Food-Mood-Poop system as well to track how the food you’re eating is affecting you. There’s lots of ways to journal, if you want to see how I do it, DM me on Facebook. I’ll be happy to share my journaling system with you. On Facebook, I’m @TheIBDHealthCoach. Just shoot me a message and let me know you’d like my F-M-P Journaling System.

THE LAST PUZZLE PIECE COMES TOGETHER.

Before we wrap up today, there’s one last puzzle piece we have to fit together. And that’s how all of this cheating might be impacting your mental health. Your emotions.

There’s no doubt about it, it doesn’t matter why we cheat. There’s negative emotions that go along with the concept of cheating. You might feel like you messed up, you might feel like you’re a failure, you might be inclined to beat yourself up and think about the cheat over and over again. Feelings about cheating might overwhelm you and make you begin to feel stressed, anxious, or even depressed.

And this is directly for you mama, if you’ve ever cheated on your gut healing diet before. You might be in the midst of a cheat right now. Holding on to the cheat, beating yourself up about the cheat, deciding that the diet isn’t worth it because you cheated, feeling stressed or depressed or anxious—It’s not an option.

It’s just not.

What’s the point?

HEY CHEATER, YOU’RE NOT ALONE.

Most everyone cheats at one point or another whether they’ve been on a gut healing diet for one day or 1,000 days. It doesn’t make us less than. It doesn’t make us unworthy. It doesn’t mean we should feel embarrassed, or ashamed like we can’t tell anyone about it.

Staying on a gut healing diet is freakin’ hard. It’s not for the weak, it’s not for the meek or timid, it’s for the bad ass woman that I know you are. You are a bad ass woman who’s using everything at her disposal to heal, and I know you are because you’re listening to this podcast right now, there’s no need for shame or guilt or embarrassment.

You are human. I am human. We’re all just doing the best we can on any given day. No matter how long the cheat, let it go. Today is a new day. Tomorrow is a new day. We’re starting fresh.

If the cheat really rocked your world and you’re feeling awful, you’re in flare up mode, you’re on the couch, you’re struggling to take care of the kids, it’s time to take a step back. Start back at the place where you felt your best, and for some that may be way back at the beginning. But start again because it is so worth it. And if you’re struggling to get started again, reach out because you know I’m here to help.

And if the cheat didn’t really affect you, you’re going about your day, you’re not in constant pain, you’re not symptomatic, move onward and upward because the cheat is in the past (where it belongs).

Simple as that.

You got this. I know you got this. We’ve got this IBD craziness together.

Until we meet again, 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.

[28:16] 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.

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