August 13, 2018
Do you suffer from uncomfortable PMS symptoms like cramps, mood swings and fatigue? Did you know that simply changing your food choices could actually reduce these symptoms? Listen in as we talk about PMS symptoms and what we, as nutritionist, find helpful to relieve those symptoms.
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SHELBY: Welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition, brought to you by Nutritional Weight & Wellness. Well, I'm excited. We have another interesting topic this morning for you guys. We are going to be looking at symptoms of PMS, the cramps, the mood swings, the fatigue. For so many women who are experiencing this, it can be challenging. You know, some of the uncomfortable symptoms that these women are experiencing don't realize that a shift in their food choices can actually reduce their symptoms. So good morning. I am Shelby Hummel. I'm a licensed nutritionist. I have a master's degree of science in applied clinical nutrition and I am just so delighted to be in studio with Lea Wetzell this morning!
LEA: Yeah, good morning.
SHELBY: So both Leah and I are licensed nutritionists. We work in different offices unfortunately, so we don't cross paths that often, but we love to educate people on the importance of eating real food. So Lea, why don't you tell us a little bit about yourself.
LEA: Sure. Yeah. Like Shelby said, I'm a licensed nutritionist and my master's degree is in clinical nutrition. I'm on the board of nutrition and dietetics for the state and I'm on my fifth year on the board.
SHELBY: We appreciate that.
LEA: Yeah, it's been a really great experience. And then in total I’ll be on the board for eight years. You can serve two terms. So I'm on my second term on the board.
SHELBY: So how did you initially become interested in nutrition? Because I think your story is kind of unique.
LEA: Yeah. So for me, you know, what brought me to discover Nutritional Weight & Wellness and want to become an employee, eleven years ago, oh my gosh, it's been 11 years, was that growing up at an early age, I had pretty poor health. And I had decided that I needed to make some changes in my life because I was gaining weight very rapidly, I was almost classified as obese, and I had two major autoimmune conditions; a lot of inflammation. And so by deciding that I didn't know much about food and that area of focus, maybe it would help with some of these issues. I decided to start to dig into it and I cut out major things, cut out soda, I cut out juice, a lot of junk food. Oh, I love cereal.
SHELBY: Lots of inflammatory things.
LEA: A lot of inflammatory things. Yeah. I didn't realize at the time that that was causing all that inflammation. And the good news was I lost 50 pounds and through that journey, I was able to sustain that weight loss. You know, when I came to work at Nutritional Weight & Wellness though, I still was having issues with asthma. That was one of my major autoimmune issues, and using my inhaler regularly. I decided, as a further discovery, working with Dar of course, the expert, and trying to figure that piece out, and working with Nutritional Weight & Wellness, I changed my nutrition and ultimately it changed my entire life. Dar encouraged me to stop eating certain inflammatory foods that I didn't realize for me were inflammatory.
SHELBY: What were some of those, Lea?
LEA: You know, dairy was a big problem. Dairy products I still incorporated in, healthy versions on them, but for me that was a big inflammatory issue for my asthma. So cutting out dairy, I also cut out gluten and it cleared up my asthma completely and I was able to get off all my inhalers and medications. And now that’s been 11 years ago, and I've been able to sustain that.
SHELBY: So you're happy, healthy, both on the inside and out.
LEA: Yes, all of the above.
SHELBY: Looking at how those foods affected your immune system, to me it sounds like, you know, the inflammatory soda, juice, the dairy products
LEA: That was like the first layer and that really helps with weight loss and other forms of reduction of inflammation.
SHELBY: So, some of the other things that you cut out, or you just upgraded so to speak, were cereal, bread, some of those gluten things. So, what do you eat now if you're not eating cereal for breakfast or if you're not having a slice of toast?
LEA: Yeah. So for me, for breakfast, I do a lot with the whole, real nutrients. I do alot with breakfast sausages, I'm just thinking about today, so for today, for breakfast I had breakfast sausages and we will often have leftover sweet potato, but like half a sweet potato and broccoli with butter on it. That is a very nourishing breakfast and keeps me full, keeps my inflammation down. Great start to the day.
SHELBY: Well, and those sorts of foods that you had mentioned, Lea, you know the breakfast sausage, the sweet potatoes with some butter, those are the types of foods that are going to help reduce that inflammation so you don't have a poorly functioning immune system. I think that's probably been one of the most surprising things for my clients is the effect that food has on their immune system.
We're going to take a whole other look at how food affects hormones today. So, one of the things that we definitely want to talk about today is how PMS symptoms are related to our food choices and some of our other habits as well. So as nutritionists, we are looking at the foods that you're eating for breakfast, the foods that you're eating for lunch. It may surprise you that three out of four menstruating women experience some form of PMS symptoms every month. In fact, some of my clients actually welcome menopause because they want to be free of those awful symptoms.
LEA: That they've been having since teenage years.
SHELBY: Are you seeing any teenage clients with severe cramping, heavy flow?
SHELBY: I feel like I've been seeing more of those recently.
LEA: Very intense symptoms. You know, I feel like it's happening at earlier and earlier ages, too. And there's a wide variety of symptoms ranging from mood swings to breast tenderness, insomnia to food cravings, irritability, depression, fatigue, constipation, diarrhea. All of these things and more could be tied to PMS symptoms. No one person is the same. Everybody has their own unique set of symptoms. If we look at all of that though, as all inflammatory and under one root cause. So inflammation is always part of that. So what symptom or symptoms are you experiencing? Most women experience mild to moderate symptoms while 20 to 30 percent of women experience moderate to severe symptoms. Then there are about the eight percent of women whose symptoms are so severe that these symptoms interfere with their lives.
SHELBY: Well, I unfortunately have a friend who would definitely fall into that eight percent. I was telling you a little bit more about that before we started this morning, but I was talking to this friend of mine and I just said to her, you know, I know you've struggled with your cycle. Tell me a little bit more about that. And she was just saying that the week before she's supposed to get her menstrual cycle, she experiences really severe nausea to the point where she doesn’t really want to eat anything, which makes the rest of the day really hard for energy. It makes it really challenging for sleep. But then the first or the second day of her new cycle, she gets really intense cramping, heavy flow. I can only imagine how challenging that would be to have such intense cramping that you're getting sick. I mean, such intense gut pain
LEA: And this month after month
SHELBY: Bent over in pain. And I consider myself very lucky after talking to this friend.
LEA: Yeah. And I have clients where, you know, monthly or bimonthly, because your periods can change from month to month, they miss work or school a day or two because of some PMS symptom, whether that's migraines or cramping, or just extreme fatigue that it really can be debilitating and so this is something that's important as a discussion and trying to come up with some ideas of what we can do to help with that. But it’s break time already.
So you are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition and we're discussing the hormonal imbalances that cause PMS symptoms. If you are experiencing a lot of PMS cramping, or even any muscle cramping, we suggest taking 400 milligrams of magnesium glycinate at bed. A leading cause of muscle cramping and PMS cramping is having a deficiency of magnesium. And today, three out of four people, or 75 percent of Americans, are deficient in the mineral magnesium. If you have questions for us today, please call the studio at 651-641-1071.
SHELBY: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. You know, as I was preparing for this show about PMS, I was referring to Dr. Christiane Northrup's book, The Wisdom of Menopause, and discovered that many women who are experiencing some of those serious PMS symptoms that we were talking about will no doubt have more severe menopausal symptoms. With that in mind, I want to let you listeners know about an upcoming seminar that we have. On Saturday, November 10, we are offering our popular Menopause Survival Seminar at our Maple Grove location, so come hang out, bring a friend, sister, neighbor. Dar, Joanne and Kris will lead you through some of the symptoms and of course some real food solutions. Be sure to call early to reserve your seat. You can go to our website weightandwellness.com, or you can call 651-699-3438 to sign up or to have any questions answered.
LEA: It's a great seminar. It’s just packed full of all sorts of great information and a lot of great suggestions of how to deal with your symptoms or preventatively, you know, this is something that, you know as I’m inching towards that time of my life, unfortunate, you know, these are the things that I'm thinking about of how can I prepare myself in the best way for a good transition into menopause.
SHELBY: Transition, not pulling the rug out from under you.
LEA: Yeah, exactly. You know I had some loved ones in my family who had some pretty significant issues with that transition. So I'm thinking about that and a lot of what we're discussing today with relation to hormones and PMS symptoms can also, again like you said, trickle over into perimenopause and menopause.
SHELBY: Definitely. I would say one of the biggest ones that I see a connection through the years is the insomnia. Maybe sleep starts to deteriorate, you know, in the thirties and the forties. And then it really whiz bam is challenging.
LEA: And so if one of your PMS symptoms is that you have troubles with sleeping, maybe around ovulation, so mid-cycle or before menses, now dependent on your age, if you're in your late 30’s or forties, that's something of consideration.
SHELBY: Yeah, definitely. So, before we went to break, we were talking about some of the more common signs and symptoms of PMS, but as a nutritionist, when I'm working with a client with PMS, I'm actually looking at the symptoms and I'm trying to figure out, well, what could be the root cause? Not just a bandaid, not just kind of take away their symptoms but still have problems underneath, but looking how can we put together a real food plan that's going to help rebalance the body.
LEA: So maybe a bandaid fix would be like put them on birth control or something that would regulate out the hormone, maybe in a medical model, but it's not fixing the underlying root of what's going on.
SHELBY: That's a great example. And we know that PMS is a hormonal imbalance, so we have to say, what is the real cause of your PMS? One of the basic explanations that I like to use when I'm working with clients is, you know, your hormones become unbalanced. It's kind of like someone's sitting at the bottom of the teeter-totter. And we have that imbalance of estrogen to progesterone. So when you have too much estrogen and too little progesterone in your body, that's when your hormones become unbalanced. So then the next question, Lea, we have to ask is, and I'm sure you're asking this is, “Well, how do we fix this hormonal imbalance? How do we get that estrogen and progesterone back in balance?”
LEA: So what’s causing the hormonal imbalance? So digging into that, there are many reasons for this hormonal imbalance. You know, here's another statement that may shock many of you, hormonal imbalances mostly go back to what women are eating.
SHELBY: Really? That's probably a new idea for many of our listeners.
LEA: And for the past 50 to 60 years, women have been taught to eat lots of processed carbs, right? And no fat.
SHELBY: Popcorn, rice cakes.
LEA: Yeah, zero fat. Sugar and processed carbs encourage the production of those toxic-type estrogens which can lead to hormonal problems. A diet high in sugar and processed carbs promotes those hormone imbalances.
SHELBY: Right, and you were talking initially about how inflammation contributed to poor immune function for you, when we started out our show, but inflammation can also promote more of these hormonal imbalances, so that inflammatory effect of soda, of juice, of popcorn. So of course there are other lifestyle habits that can cause problems with hormonal imbalances. One would be, you know, an excessive consumption of caffeine or alcohol. You know, growing up I didn't really like coffee. It wasn't until I was in college and I was like, hmm, maybe I need to check this out. But unfortunately, I was at the Apple store trying to get a device fixed yesterday, and as we were waiting I was shocked to see the number of young adults, teenagers even, with these, I don't even know the size, but it's probably like grande whatever it may be. Talk about caffeine, sugar, probably some other bad fats in there.
LEA: A lot of those sugary drinks those young teenagers just love and the caffeine levels now that are found in some of your standard store-bought coffees, it's excessive.
SHELBY: And looking at, maybe once in awhile, that lifestyle choice may not be a big driver of inflammation or hormonal imbalances, but for some of these teens this is what they're doing each and every day. And no surprise, on past shows, Lea, we've talked about how we have an increase in teen anxiety an increase in depression, and surprisingly more of our clients, more of these young women, are coming in experiencing some of those PMS symptoms.
LEA: Right, right. You know, what are some other factors that could cause hormonal imbalances, you know, certainly ongoing stress, lack of sleep, the hormones in dairy products. We talked a little bit about this early on, about that connection. For me, that was one of the foods I cut out for reducing my inflammation for asthma, but there's a lot of other things in that dairy that's inflammatory like the excess hormones and also from these toxic pesticides that we're all being exposed to now. This has all been an uprise in the last 30 years in our farming that these types of chemicals we use for your conventional farming are known as xenoestrogen.
SHELBY: Meaning that they're a bad
LEA: Or a toxic chemical that can mimic hormones in our bodies. So these types of pesticides can lead to more toxic estrogen in our bodies.
SHELBY: Yeah. Well, one of the things, Lea, that I can talk about is how giving up conventional dairy products has helped me to reduce some of what I would consider hormonal acne along the jaw line. Kind of that really painful, kind of flows with my cycle, that sort of thing. But I would say reducing the amount of dairy and really looking at high-quality dairy, organic raw cheeses if I can find it, but really prioritizing, getting an organic grass-fed butter, organic whipping cream. But for me it's like, okay, where is that inflammation coming from? And that seemed to be a big driver of inflammation for me.
LEA: Yeah. And what we talk about a lot on this show, when we are going to be consuming dairy products, we want to be consuming the full-fat versions. If we're going to drink milk, we want to be drinking full fat. If we’re wanting yogurt, we want to be having full-fat yogurt. But you know, when we look at those products in the conventional world, getting the regular conventional milk that has a lot of the hormones in it and residues that we're talking about. So the organic versions, they are void of that.
Well, it's break time again. You're listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. Have you ever gone to your local big box hardware store to buy a mousetrap and left with three bags of candy and devoured one bag even before leaving the parking lot? Or while you were grocery shopping, you a feast on countless samples knowing full well that the popcorn and the chips, the cakes, the cookies, the pizzas are not on your eating plan? However, you've convinced yourself it's okay because they're such small portions, but then you keep going back for more. Oh yes, sugar and bad fats are everywhere you turn, especially in the grocery stores to promote more sales. We all have habits holding us back. We address those habits and much more in our Nutrition 4 Weight Loss Series. Maybe our fall series is exactly what you need to move forward. We'll be right back.
SHELBY: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. I know when I was a teenager and even in my early twenties, I had no idea what was contributing to health problems. For many women, the lack of information about how their diet and their lifestyle is connected to their hormones and their health, it's sad kind of. So I would encourage any of you out there listening, share this information from our show with a friend, a daughter, even a granddaughter or a niece. Listening to podcasts, it's so easy. You can spend 45 minutes walking the dog or I often listen to podcasts when I'm doing dishes. It kind of takes me away.
LEA: Or if I'm cooking or prepping my food, I do that for clients too, I always say listen to our show while you're already working on your goals of prepping your food for the week.
SHELBY: Yeah, absolutely. You know, that's one way to become well informed and to lay that base of knowledge about real food and healthy habits. So we've been told our podcasts are life changing, we hear it and we love to hear it. So let's build a community of like-minded nutrition listeners here in Minnesota, here in the United States, or throughout the world. People can go to our website at weightandwellness.com. You can click on podcast, you can even search by topic. It's a really easy way to listen and learn.
LEA: Yes, it's really great. So, before break we were talking about what are some other contributing factors that cause hormonal imbalances. We talked about stress and we talked about lack of sleep. We talked about high sugar foods and no-fat, low-fat eating dairy products. We kind of ended on our conventional dairy products and the toxic hormones and pesticides, too.
SHELBY: So Lea, 75 percent of women with PMS are suffering from headaches, mood swings, bloating, fatigue, cramps and other problems that can interfere with their relationships, their work, school life, and in general kind of enjoying life. So these are some PMS symptoms that can occur 10 to 14 days before menstruation and even for three to seven days after their cycle begins. So as women get older and move into their late thirties, maybe you know, 38, 39, oftentimes they see that these symptoms continue to get worse.
LEA: If you were struggling or suffering with PMS, let's take a look at your diet. Some of my clients who have PMS start their day off maybe with a bagel and coffee and then they have a muffin and coffee on their break. They eat fast food for lunch, have chocolate and soda or coffee for an afternoon snack. And for dinner, they eat pizza and either with a soda or with beer, you know, I certainly hope you can clearly see this menu that can lead to PMS. If you eat these types of foods often and you want to get rid of your PMS symptoms, you will need to change your eating and some of your lifestyle habits.
SHELBY: So Leah, if you have someone who is sitting down with you for the first time and they're starting their day off with a bagel and coffee, maybe they're snacking on a muffin mid-morning or they find themselves wanting pretzels or popcorn for a snack. In the grand scheme of an entire day, how do you motivate them to make these changes?
LEA: These correlations that we're talking about today, they're having a lot of cravings and they're having a lot of cravings for sugar and carbs. So how can we get to the root of getting rid of those cravings because that's key in order for them to adhere to eating a healthy balanced diet. And we set up a meal plan that encourages eating lots of whole, real, healthy food. So carbohydrates coming from vegetables and healthy fruits and I love more concentrated vegetables like root vegetables and sweet potatoes, parsnips, those are really good for hormone balancing. And protein is critical for those carb cravings. So a lot of protein throughout the day and you need that healthy fat. So butter and saturated fats are great. Coconut oil, bacon, fat, these are important components for balancing their blood sugar, keeping their cravings stable and they're eating every few hours.
SHELBY: So when you're working with them, you help them kind of break this all down. You give them a plan, you're not only laying that foundation of, well this is why we're going to do this, but then also helping them put together some realistic ideas of what they could eat.
LEA: Right, for them, what works for them. And once you kind of understand these connections, as I've made these connections myself, it's powerful. When you see how you feel better when you eat a certain way, you feel worse when you eat another way.
SHELBY: Yeah. We say there's no one size fits all plan.
LEA: Exactly. So, looking at all of this, hormone imbalances are really an epidemic, aren't they? While many things can contribute to these imbalances in your sex hormones, the good news is that most women can fix these imbalances without medications. These imbalances are not the result of bad genetics or bad luck right. They’re due to a build up over time. This is not one bad meal. This is something of a habit of eating a certain way for a very long stretch of time, and so trying to get to the root of some of these bad habits. So Shelby, what would be an example of something to focus on to help with reducing PMS symptoms?
SHELBY: You know, one of the things that I would consider a habit that we would want to change is drinking too much alcohol. So, what does that really mean? What is too much alcohol?
LEA: You know, when somebody comes to me and they're having hormonal imbalances and I see on their health history that maybe they're drinking, maybe not excessively, but every day. They'll have their glass of wine or two at night as a ritual every day. And I find if you're drinking regularly, let's just say five to seven days out of the week you're having some alcohol, that's too much for your liver, too much processing and trying to detoxify the alcohol and it can affect your hormone balance. It’s is not able to do all these other important jobs when it's having to work on detoxing alcohol and also the blood sugar impact that that may have. So I will say, you know, that if this is something you're going to incorporate in maybe once, maybe twice a week, maybe not every week have a glass of wine. And a serving is about four ounces of wine.
SHELBY: That's the important part.
LEA: You know, try to moderate their consumption of alcohol. And I've had some good successes with people feeling better, losing weight, better hormone balance, better sleep at night.
SHELBY: Better sleep is huge.
LEA: Less cravings when we reduce the alcohol intake.
SHELBY: What would be another bad habit that you would consider to minimize those hormone imbalances?
LEA: Well, for sure this would probably be number one is smoking. If you smoke, that's a big endocrine disruptor and causing hormonal imbalances. A lot of inflammation. So cutting out smoking is critical.
SHELBY: And not just inflammation in the lungs, right? Inflammation throughout the body with those toxins. Well, bad habit number three that I would consider, Lea, would be eating a high-sugar, processed-foods diet. So, you know, we talked of course about the bagel, the cereal, the toast. Those sorts of things.
LEA: You know, in reflecting back on my childhood, I would eat cereal every meal if I could. You know, high sugar and not realizing this hidden sugar.
SHELBY: Skim milk?
LEA: Oh yeah. You have more sugar, right? You know, another one bad habit, number four, I would say I often see with clients that is a contributing factor to hormone regulation is drinking too much caffeine.
SHELBY: So not just soda, but coffee, some tea, energy drinks sometimes just with the younger population.
LEA: Too much caffeine definitely can play a role in causing hormonal imbalances. So I'll often work on goal setting around getting off soda, getting off energy drinks and some people with those PMS symptoms, they have sensitive sleep. If insomnia or poor sleep is part of it, we really try to reduce the caffeine intake, maybe one cup of eight ounces of coffee in the morning with heavy whipping cream in it and some people they need to cut it down to just maybe green tea.
SHELBY: Reduce that amount of caffeine. Well, you know, when we think about caffeine, we look back what organ system has to process and detoxify that? And we go back to the liver,
LEA: And it's really coffee. You know, if you're going to have coffee and you're having hormonal symptoms, organic coffee because it's one of the highest pesticide ridden crops. So you’ll have pesticides if you're doing non-organic coffee
SHELBY: I think it’s the second highest crop right behind tobacco, if I remember correctly. So pretty important to be seeking out that organic coffee if you are consuming coffee.
LEA: Yes. So balancing your hormones is a process. It doesn't happen overnight. This takes some time.
SHELBY: And if you feel overwhelmed, you know, maybe this is the time for you to set aside some time for self care, setting up an appointment with one of our Nutritional Weight & Wellness nutritionists or dietitians. You know, we can help you not only learn what is going to influence your hormones, but we're also going to give you some practical tips so you can implement these things. You learn a little bit more, you practice a little bit more.
LEA: Exactly. So we'll get more into this again after break. You're listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. We have a great show coming up next week. Cassie and JoAnne will be talking about the nutrition connections to brain health. They are addressing issues of attention, focus, and even OCD. Just in time for back to school, check out The Food Connection to ADHD Seminar on Saturday, September 29 at our St Paul Weight and wellness location. If you have questions about that, you can call the office at 651-699-3438.
SHELBY: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. If you have habits that are holding you back from being your real self, I encourage you to sign up for our September Nutrition 4 Weight Loss Series. Start developing some habits that will move you closer to your goals, habits that are going to move you forward. So many people these days fret over their weight, how their clothes fit, but they continue with habits that hold them back from living the life that they want. So step into a place that's going to move you forward. Take control of how you feel on a daily basis. One hour a week for 12 weeks is a great place to start. You can call 651-699-3438 to sign up today.
LEA: Well Shelby, we have a caller on the line. Mattie, thanks for calling Dishing Up Nutrition. And you have a question today?
CALLER: Yeah. So I had a partial hysterectomy about four years ago, I’m 35 years old. And I lost 25 pounds. I'm six foot and I weigh about 110 pounds and I can't seem to put weight on. And I don't know if it had something to do with that or what I can do. I mean, I'm kind of at a loss and no doctor can tell me what I should do.
LEA: Right. So give me a sense of diet.
CALLER: I eat very healthy and I do the high fat or I do whole milk. I do a lot of vegetables, chicken, steak, but I can't seem to put weight on and my doctor told me it's unhealthy for me to be 110 pounds at 6 feet.
LEA: Yeah. I've seen some of this with these big hormonal shifts where there can be a change. One suggestion I would say if it's not been checked is to look at your thyroid.
CALLER: They’ve looked at that, it's fine.
LEA: Okay. They've done the full panel? They looked at the antibodies too?
LEA: Okay. So that looks good, because sometimes people get low hyperthyroid after an issue like that. That is a good thing to rule out. I would say gut too, so I've had a few clients where things have shifted post that hormonal shift where maybe they have more of a sensitivity and maybe it’s not showing up for you as a GI symptoms.
SHELBY: Like digestive.
LEA: Yeah. But where maybe, for example, I've had a couple of clients where they became underweight and they had an underlying sensitivity to dairy for example, and cutting out that particular food and again working on some good gut healing, they started to gain a normal weight again.
SHELBY: Because really what that food sensitivity was doing, it was preventing them from absorbing the nutrients. You know, it sounds like you are eating high-quality nutrients, but maybe you're not actually absorbing them. That would be one thing and maybe it makes sense for you to sit down with a nutritionist and kind of go through the sleep, the gut night.
CALLER: Right. I’m going to call you guys. Because my doctor can't tell me anything. They just said, you know, you're just not gaining weight.
LEA: Yeah, I have a client almost exactly like your profile of what you described and she was running a little hyper with her thyroid, which wasn't clinically diagnosed that way, but it's not always the same case. But she had food sensitivities and she gained healthy weight. You know, we always talk about weight loss, but sometimes people need to gain some weight to be healthy, too. And that can be a food contributor as well.
SHELBY: So why don't you give our office a call this morning if you have a pen at 651-699-3438. And Lea Wetzell sees clients in our Mendota Heights office. You know, she would be someone that I think could help you put together an individualized plan.
CALLER: Yes, it’s very frustrating. And I listen to you guys I’m my way to work every day.
LEA: Oh Great. I'm glad that you listen, that's really great. Yeah. So there's lots to take in there. I hope we're able to meet and I'll definitely be able to help.
LEA: Great. So I want to, before we end today, just kind of recap some of the food correlations that we talked about that are helpful for helping rebalance hormones. So really what we talked about is we want to eat real food, so real proteins, that means looking at grass-fed beef and eggs and salmon, real vegetables and we'll get a little bit more into that, but specifically there are certain types of cruciferous vegetables that are really helpful for rebalancing hormones. So Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage. And additionally, I said root vegetables too, you know, your sweet potato, your parsnips, your carrots are helpful for progesterone. And fats, so butter and coconut oil and olive oil.
SHELBY: Full-fat dairy stuff. And many people find it's helpful to concentrate on what they can eat. What can we concentrate in terms of real foods that are going to help support the detoxification of those harmful estrogens, but also bring in some good quality nutrients for hormonal health.
LEA: Exactly. Yes. So could you substitute vegetables for breads and pasta? So, cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli and cauliflower and Brussels sprouts are the best for detoxifying estrogen. One of my favorites is cauliflower rice. It's been a staple in our house lately. It’s great, it's healthy, it's low carbohydrate and it's a great replacement for rice. We'll do that a lot in replacement when we have dish, for example, taco night. I'll do cauliflower rice instead of regular rice.
SHELBY: I always like to tell people cauliflower rice is so easy because you can get it in the freezer section already rice up.
LEA: I get it at Costco or you can get it at Trader Joe's.
SHELBY: And I hate to admit this, but Tyler, the first time you had cauliflower rice, he didn't even know it. I did half white rice, half cauliflower rice. And he didn't even know and he doesn't like cauliflower and he said, you know, I would be able to tell if it was in there and I said, okay, I'm going to keep my mouth shut because he's eating cauliflower and doesn't know it, and getting some of those benefits.
LEA: I did that for my kids, too. I mix it with hash browns. I'll mix it in soups, anywhere where I think there needs a little bit more support with vegetables. I'll sneak it in there and nobody knows.
SHELBY: Yeah, exactly. Well, and when we think about the cruciferous vegetables, like you said, the broccoli, the kale, the cauliflower, you know, that sort of stuff is helping detoxify estrogen in the liver. It contains a compound that helps the liver to remove those pesticides, the excess harmful hormones and eliminate them from the body.
LEA: And I would say too, when we were working with women and men too, that have excess estrogen in their system, I will set goals of, okay, so for vegetables you're consuming two cups a day, so how can we evolve this to more? In some cases, people love vegetables. I would say a really great support in the diet would be seven to nine cups of cruciferous.
SHELBY: Yeah. One of my favorites would be doing Brussel sprouts or you know, having that broccoli, cauliflower mix. You know, Lea, what do you do if someone's not a big vegetable lover? I often recommend the powdered fruits and greens, I think called Dynamic Fruits and Greens. They're really great at helping to detoxify because there are just packed with vegetables.
LEA: And 20 servings per scoop. And that's good for all of what we're talking about as a start point. And like I said with my own story, I didn't grow up loving vegetables. I ate all just processed sugar carbohydrates that we talked about that lead to hormonal disruption.
SHELBY: And now you're a veggie queen.
LEA: I do. I love them. And so it's a journey. It's a process. So even though you say, oh, I hate Brussels sprouts. Well, okay, I did too. Maybe what you consider to do is try them again as an adult if you didn't like them as a kid and add fat to them, roast them in the oven with some fat. Bacon and Brussel sprouts are a marriage, they just go together. So as an adult, I've really evolved to loving vegetables and if you're a one cup a day, you strive for two and you just make that a habit.
SHELBY: So Lea, let's kind of take that Brussels sprout and say, you know, you could serve that with a steak or some salmon, maybe have some sweet potato with a little butter on there. That would be a really great dinner for balancing hormones.
LEA: And you could have that for breakfast or lunch, you know, often I'll make twice as much as I need for dinner so I have my lunch the next day. Anytime of the day, that what you described would be a really great meal.
Well, you know, our goal at Nutritional Weight & Wellness is to help each and every person experience better health through eating real food. It's a simple yet powerful message. Eating real food is life changing. I want to thank all of you today for listening and I want to thank you to Shelby for being on this show today and I hope everybody has a great weekend. Thank you.