079: Dr. Lauren Noel on Using Naturopathic Medicine for Hormone Imbalances

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How Naturopathic Medicine Can Help Get to the Root of Hormone Imbalance and Nutrient Deficiencies.
Wellness Mama » Episode » 079: Dr. Lauren Noel on Using Naturopathic Medicine for Hormone Imbalances
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079: Dr. Lauren Noel on Using Naturopathic Medicine for Hormone Imbalances

I met the lovely Dr. Lauren Noel at a conference and was blown away with her energy and passion for helping people (as well as by her singing voice… she is amazing!).

I was shocked when she mentioned that she struggled with hormone imbalance and other problems for years, because she is the picture of health. We had a long (and nerdy) discussion about health and I’ve come to greatly respect her work.

Dr. Lauren Noel is a naturopathic doctor who has treated over 5,000 patients. She owns Shine Natural Medicine in California, where she treats patients locally and all over the country and she also runs the top rated podcast, Dr. Lo Radio.

Listen in on this episode as we discuss the problems Dr. Lauren encounters most in her practice and how she is helping her patients live healthier lives.

In This Episode, You’ll Learn

  • Why Dr. Lauren is seeing so many patients with Vitamin D deficiency and why she doesn’t think lack of sunlight is the only cause
  • The thyroid and magnesium link and how to fix it
  • How to know if iron levels are low (or high)
  • Why Dr. Lo agrees that light (or lack of light at night) is super important (she probably wears orange glasses too!)
  • The reason night lights are linked to a higher risk of leukemia
  • Why Dr. Lo is unapologetic about making time for self care (and why you and I should be too!)
  • Her three rules of health (that she has written down and committed to)
  • How Dr. Lauren walks three times a day!! (and why she considers this one of the most important things she does
  • Why Dr. Lauren often turns to nutrient IVs in her practice for patients with deficiencies and hormone imbalances

Resources We Mention

More From Wellness Mama

[toggle title=”Read Transcript”]
Child: Welcome to my Mommy’s podcast.

Katie: This episode is sponsored by Mama Natural. And my friend, Genevieve, also known as Mama Natural, has just come out with a game changing pregnancy book called “The Mama Natural Week To Week Guide To Pregnancy And Child Birth”. So if you or anyone you know is pregnant, I strongly recommend picking up a copy or just grabbing one to donate to your local library. It is an incredible resource and definitely one of the best resources I’ve seen for new moms. Also, Genevieve has a week to week email series for pregnancy. So you’ve seen these on other websites but this one is a natural take on week to week emails that tells you how your baby’s growing, what milestones he or she’s hitting, all that cool stuff and it’s free. So you can check it out at mamanatural.com/wellness, mamanatural.com./wellness to sign up for the free week to week pregnancy email series or also to check out her amazing new book.

This podcast is also brought to you by ButcherBox. And if you haven’t heard of them, they’re a great company that ships really high quality meats to your door. They carry 100% grass fed beef, organic and pastured chicken, and heritage breed pork, and they deliver it directly to your door. All of their products are humanely raised and free of antibiotics and hormones. And as a Wellness Mama listener, you can get $15 off plus free bacon in your first box. Go to butcherbox.com/wellnessmama and use the promo code, HEALTHYMOMS.

Welcome to the Healthy Moms podcast. I’m Katie from wellnessmama.com. And I am here today with a friend of mine and someone who I love to talk to. It’s going to be such a fun episode. Dr. Lauren Noel is a licensed naturopathic doctor and an expert in natural medicine. She has a doctorate from the National College of Natural Medicine in Oregon. And she’s treated thousands of patients using natural therapies, especially on issues like digestive disorders, hormone imbalances, and autoimmune disease. She is a guest lecturer on a lot of different radio shows. She’s spoken at a lot of medical conferences and she has her own podcast, The Dr. Lo Radio Show which is top rated in iTunes and has millions of listeners.

She also owns Shine Natural Medicine in Solano Beach, California where she actually treats patients locally and patients from all over the country. She’s super smart and I’m super excited to have her with us. Welcome, Lauren. Thanks for being here.

Lauren: Thank you. It’s so good to be here. Thanks for having me.

Katie: I’m excited. I think this is going to be such a fun chat because you address all the issues that most women seemed to have trouble with. And I know that especially as a mom who’s had kids and been pregnant and then been nursing, hormone balance is obviously a huge thing. So, can we start there? What kind of hormone problems are you seeing in your patients right now?

Lauren: Yeah. Well, you know, I treat pretty much what I experienced for many years. So, yes I know this stuff because I’ve learned it in books and I’ve, you know, been to medical school. But I’ve totally gone through it and it is really hard to go through especially in a conventional medical model, because you pretty much just feel like you’re crazy. You go to your doctor with all these different symptoms. They say you’re fine, they run all your labs, everything is normal because they’re comparing you to the average American, not to an optimal perspective. And then you just get sent home, maybe you’ll get a medication, maybe you’ll get a prescription for an anti-depressant or something.

But there’s really nothing that they’ll give you. And so I’ve experienced it, I know the frustration. I pretty much went to medical school because of a broken medical model, of being a patient going to Kaiser and not getting any answers. And so once I found out about naturopathic medicine, I knew that they had to just go to medical school just to learn it all. Even if I didn’t necessarily think I would practice. The practice is like the cherry on top but I finally understood how all these things started to happen for me. And so now in my practice, I’m seeing a
lot of the different issues that I dealt with, you know, decades ago or decade plus ago.

So, a few different things I’m seeing. I’m seeing a lot of thyroid issues and I know that we’ve had lots of conversations about that, so hypothyroid mainly. Most of the time when a woman has an underactive thyroid, it’s an autoimmune condition called Hashimoto, so I’m seeing a ton of that. And so other than that, I’m seeing a lot of infertility issues for ladies. So having a hard time getting pregnant, a lot of women are getting pregnant later. So they’re wanting to preserve that fertility and stay as fertile as long as they can. And then later on in life, seeing women who are kinda going through some hormone craziness with perimenopause, menopause, and just not feeling like they’re getting the support they need through that transition.

So, there’s lots of different stages that we all go through and, you know, sometimes we’ll see things earlier than others. And every women is so different, that’s why it’s so important to take that really individualized approach when it comes to health.

Katie: Definitely. And I can totally echo your experience in that I knew something was wrong. I was having all these random symptoms and every doctor would test my thyroid and say, “No, it’s fine. Maybe it’s a little low but it’s fine.” And it wasn’t until I found someone who really was well educated in specific hormone related things in Hashimoto’s that I was finally able to start finding answers. So, what’s the process that you take someone through when someone comes to you with a hormone issue?

Lauren: Well, first off I test every single patient for Hashimoto’s even if it’s a guy who has no Hashimoto symptoms, because I’m seeing it so much. And I’m actually doing a whole autoimmune panel on every person. So, my first panel, so my first appointment I’m spending an hour with patients really digging into the history. I mean it is so crazy how many times, you know, it will be half hour or 45 minutes into an appointment and they’ll say something, “Oh, actually I didn’t think of this. I’m glad you asked this.” And they bring in a piece of the puzzle that maybe they didn’t connect before.

So, it’s important to spend that time with the patients, you know, and to really get to know their story and also too, I love just asking about like, tell me about you personally? You know, you’re not just a walking set of symptoms, like tell me a little bit about you? What makes you happy? What do you love to do? Because all these things are connected with health. So I love to really establish that relationship and then I run a ton of labs. I like to run full thyroid, full blood work, you know, full cholesterol panels, not just the basic cholesterol, you know, good and bad cholesterol because that doesn’t really tell us very much.

You know, measure bits of inflammation, autoimmune. I’m running vitamin and mineral deficiencies on everybody just because we’re all, you know, no one is going to have the perfect diet all the time. And even if you do, you know, your digestive system may not be working ideally or you’re eating the perfect diet but it was, you know, grown in soil that was depleted of nutrients. So, checking to see where your levels are is really important. And then I’m running a lot of hormone testing, too. So I just love to get all the information and then putting together, you know, kind of a game plan from there.

Katie: Yeah, I feel like that’s probably why you have such great results with all your patients is because you test so in depth. And I also love that you are such a positive person and you and I have had so many conversations about different health related things. And I think for so many people like it’s so scary to get a health diagnosis or to find out you have Hashimoto’s. And you’re just so happy and upbeat and positive, like you don’t even let them have that, like pity party. You just, you give them a plan of action. You like let it, you know, you figure out what’s going to be the solution. I love that about you.

Lauren: Well, we talk about reframing things because let’s say you get this diagnosis of gluten free, you have a choice at that point. You can look at it as, “I can’t eat this. There’s nothing for me to eat.” Or you can reframe the exact same situation as, “Oh my gosh, how great it is that I found this out. This is going to help me so much and now I get to eat foods that heal my body.” You know, it’s the same action but a very different mindset around it. And so reframing that and it’s always important to have that positive attitude about it. You
know, and like if you get a bad diagnosis from a doctor, get more opinions and look elsewhere and keep that positive.
You know you don’t have to be a victim to circumstance. So, I like to have that empowering piece. I’ve done a lot of, you know, personal growth and development over the years and really I needed to work on myself a lot and it’s still a process. Like there’s days I’m like, “Did I do any personal growth? Like am I really a doctor?” So, you know, I don’t like put myself on this pedestal but, you know, so it’s a process. And I think having that personal growth piece and really getting to know yourself helps you so much more, especially when dealing with, you know, health challenges.

Katie: Yeah, for sure. And that’s probably also why you’re able to relate so well to patients. Because I find that too that the joke is that people, you know, get into psychology to try to figure out what’s wrong with themselves. And I feel like all of us got into health for the same reason. You know, you said you went to medical school to fix yourself. I started blogging about my journey trying to figure out what was wrong with me, and thankfully, hopefully helped a lot of people in the process. But I think that really helps because you can relate to people and you can understand their struggle.

Lauren: And also for any of you guys listening, you can hear yourself in our stories that it came out of pain. It came out of frustration, you know. It came out of just a difficult time that was that little seed that started this big growth of beautiful creation of what a career looks like and reaching a lot of people. So, you know, it’s just keeping that perspective that if you’re going through a tough time, this could be the start of something really amazing, if you just say yes and you allow it to happen. So, just knowing that, you know, life is going to have those ups and downs. If it’s low, it’s not always going to be like that.

Katie: Yeah, exactly. So I want to delve a little deeper because you have such good expertise in a couple of areas and you mentioned nutrient deficiencies. What are some of the ones that you’re seeing most people have? Even people who are trying to eat a really good diet these days?

Lauren: Yeah. Well, first off vitamin D is pretty much low in everyone. Even people who live in San Diego who go outside, they even had lifeguards come in and they’re low in vitamin D. And actually, I have a little bit of a different philosophy with that. I don’t think that it’s always necessarily that they have a deficiency in sunshine. I think it’s often times they’re not getting enough darkness at night. And so they’re not resetting those vitamin D receptors. It’s a theory, it’s something I heard from TS Wiley but it makes a lot of sense, because I’m seeing that this is the case of people who get a lot of sunshine and they’re still deficient.

But I, you know, when I dig a little deeper they’re barely sleeping. So, vitamin D is a big one. Iron deficiency, you know, super common in women who have a period, especially for you ladies who have heavy periods, difficult periods. You’re going to be a lot more prone to having low iron and that’s important because low iron makes the thyroid really, really weak. So, you can have hypothyroidism because your iron is low. So, I love checking that. Magnesium, super common. It’s involved in over 300 different reactions in your body. So if you’re low in magnesium, all like a bunch of different body system are not going to work properly. Your adrenal system, your hormones, you know, your muscles aren’t going to repair, you’re going to be sore and achy, so magnesium is a big one.

All the B vitamins, B1 through 12, but probably folate, B12. And actually I see a lot of deficiency in B5. B5 is your adrenal glands’ favorite B vitamin, so no surprise that that’s low a lot. And then on blood, checking glutathione. So, I’m sure you guys have talked about glutathione on your podcast as the master antioxidant, and basically is the quarterback of your detox team. So if you’re low in this, you’re just going to be, you know, circulating toxins more, not cleansing those things out. If you find that you get hangovers really easily, you’re probably low in glutathione. It would be really great to check that. So, those would probably be the most common ones.

Katie: What’s your plan for kind of remedying those? Especially like magnesium, there’s so many different
opinions about how you should or shouldn’t get magnesium. So what do you typically have people do?

Lauren: Yeah, you know, usually I’ll start with like a mag citrate or a mag glycinate, just have them do it at bedtime, you know, and that really can help us sleep. And especially if you tend to run constipated it’s helpful because it gets things moving a little more. So, that’s a good place to start. Very rarely someone won’t tolerate magnesium, so maybe we’ll do magnesium oil or gel. You can do topically. And then, you know, if they’re really having issues with their digestive system, we’ll do some IVs or some shots of magnesium. So pretty much any way you could think about it you can get it in. It’s just figuring out which the best way is.

Katie: Definitely, and okay. So I want to tie in two things you said. So you talked about stress and how obviously that has like a very physiological effect on people. And also I think a lot of people don’t realize that even if you don’t feel stressed, you could be under a tremendous amount of stress. And I’m right with you on the light and sleep and nighttime thing because that’s an area I’ve researched a ton. And I think that’s actually an area where a lot of us are undermining our health without realizing it. So, talk a little bit more in depth about stress but also like, let’s delve into the light thing at night more.

Lauren: Oh, man. It seems like so not a big deal but it is completely changing the world by how much light exposure we’re getting, and how much not dark exposure we’re getting. So, you know, if you go camping, it’s very dramatic the difference between the light and the dark. You know, it gets really, really bright during the day and then when you’re camping at night you better bring a flashlight because it’s completely pitch black. So, our bodies and our brains are genetically designed to be in that environment. So, think about how it is now. We’re indoors all day and yes, it’s light but it’s not as light as the sun.

And then we go home and then we’re still indoors and it’s still kind of light. And so our body never goes, “Oh, it’s daytime.” And then at nighttime, “Oh, it’s nighttime.” And so as a result, your body thinks that this endless summer, because in the summertime we get more exposure to light. We don’t get as much dark. And in the summertime, our bodies are designed to become more insulin resistant because we’re saving up fat for the winter. So when you have an endless summer, you have cortisol high more often because cortisol goes up when the sun goes up. And then what happens is your body goes, “Okay, so winter is coming. Let’s store some fat. We need to give you some insulation.”

And it really does screw up that metabolism big time. Also, you’re not going to be getting as much of that night time melatonin. Melatonin is that master anti-cancer hormone. Also growth hormone goes up at night time which is going to give you that boost of metabolism. That’s when you detox, that’s when you heal your tissues, that’s when your digestive system heals. So you can see how one little invention of the light bulb if it’s not managed properly can have a lot of havoc.

Katie: Totally, and especially with blue light. Like I know so many people who are on their phones right before bed or, you know, have blue lights in their bedroom or watching TV. And when you actually delve into the research, it’s pretty staggering how even a little bit of blue light at night can drastically reduce like you said your melatonin. And how that’s like a whole hormone cascade and like we know the statistics. If you don’t have a good night of sleep, it affects your blood sugar. It can make you almost pre-diabetic the next day. Like all these things and we’re doing it every day and especially it kills me to see kids doing this.

Lauren: Yeah. Well, we know that kids who grew up with night lights are more likely to have leukemia. Because it does alter their immune system and they’re not getting that anti-cancer hormone, the melatonin. So yeah, it’s important that you just educate yourself about this stuff. You can’t just expect that you’re going to learn this on commercials or that your doctor is going to tell you in the 10 minute visit that you see with them. You really need to learn this stuff for yourself and it just makes sense. When you think about it, it makes perfect sense. Of course, we’re supposed to be in a different kind of environment than what we’re in right now. But we just get so used to it and we grow up in a certain way we don’t really think about it.

Katie: Yeah. And I think it’s good to have balance where you’re not just afraid of, because obviously technology
has a tremendous amount of benefits as well.

Lauren: Absolutely.

Katie: But like finding out how to use modern conveniences we have actually to like, get the best of both worlds. Like I actually take a lot of heat every time I share a post I have about why my kids will never have night lights. And because people are like, “Oh, great. Now even night lights are a problem.” But like actually they are. And, you know, our kids have black out curtains on their windows, they have no lights in their room. We keep it cool and they sleep so much better which, as a parent, it makes your whole life better when your kids sleep better.

Lauren: Yeah. And that’s an opportunity for how you, you know, frame it, right? It’s like I’m doing all these things because I want to prevent cancer or, you know, everything is out to kill me versus okay, cool. We know how the body is supposed to work. Let’s put these things in place and let’s move on. Like it doesn’t have to be this crazy thing. And with the night lights, you can get amber colored night lights. You know, if you really want to do night lights for the kids but it’s not going to have that blue light and that’s what we’re talking about.

Katie: Yeah, exactly. And I think the flip side of it that you mentioned is the bright light during the day. Because people don’t realize like even today for instance where I am, it’s like a rainy cloudy overcast day. And if you went outside and measured, it’s still drastically, drastically brighter than even the brightest of indoor lights because there’s all these spectrums that you can’t differentiate with the human eye. And people don’t realize that. And so I feel like a lot of people are truly like you said, they’re like sunshine deficient. They actually just need light.

Lauren: Yeah, that’s one thing that I educate patients on is I want you to get outside between six and eight in the morning, that’s kind of that sweet spot in the morning and get some sunshine into your eyes. You don’t have to wear sunglasses. Go for a nice, long walk or just chill outside and just get that light exposure because that’s going to set that circadian rhythm. Plus, when the light goes into the eyes, it hits those cones and rods and that creates a trigger that will ultimately create more serotonin in your body, so that’s going to help your mood a lot as well. So getting that sunshine boosts your mood, it’s going to just help metabolism, energy, you know, everything. Just by getting some light exposure. It doesn’t cost anything.

Katie: Yeah, exactly. You could just sit on your patio with a cup of tea or even go for like a really gentle walk and it’s like a vitamin.

Lauren: Yeah, totally.

Katie: This episode is sponsored by Mama Natural. And my friend, Genevieve, also known as Mama Natural, has just come out with a game changing pregnancy book called “The Mama Natural Week To Week Guide To Pregnancy And Child Birth”. So if you or anyone you know is pregnant, I strongly recommend picking up a copy or just grabbing one to donate to your local library. It is an incredible resource and definitely one of the best resources I’ve seen for new moms. Also, Genevieve has a week to week email series for pregnancy. So you’ve seen this on other websites but this one is a natural take on week to week emails that tells you how your baby’s growing, what milestones he or she’s hitting, all that cool stuff and it’s free. So you can check it out at mamanatural.com/wellness, mamanatural.com./wellness to sign up for the free week to week pregnancy email series or also to check out her amazing new book.

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Katie: So, another thing that you do so well, because I follow you on Instagram, and you are so good about making time for self care even though like, your bio described you have like all these things that you’re doing, and treating thousands of patients and running a business and all this. But you still make time for self care and I know that’s an important thing for you and something you talk about a lot. So, why is self care so important, especially for women?

Lauren: Oh my gosh. Well, here’s the thing, we’re not put on the planet to respond to other people’s agendas. We’re not put on the planet to check emails and create to do lists and accomplish things. We’re put on the planet to fulfill our gifts and what we bring to the world. All of us, everyone listening, yes, you listening, you are unique and no one is like you. Never has been and never will be. And think about it, if you are continually pulled in a million different directions, responding to a million different people, are you going to fulfill that? Are you really going to accomplish in this life what you are able to do?

So, it’s actually selfish to always give to people and not to yourself. Because that means you’re not going to be the best you and they’re going to get a lesser version of you, you know, and you’re not going to be able to fulfill what you dream of doing. So, you know, I see self care is actually selfless because it has you feel as best as you can. I mean think about like what it would look like to feel your very best, like really what that would look like. Because we just move so quickly we don’t think about this sometimes. And if I didn’t prioritize self care, I wouldn’t have the clinic that I have. I wouldn’t have continued to do my podcast for six years.

I wouldn’t have treated over 5,000 patients. I wouldn’t have done any of that stuff and so I wouldn’t have made as much of an impact. You know, so I just, I now see it and I will say my first three years of opening my clinic, I didn’t do self care enough, and that’s why I wanted to pretty much close it at one point because it was so stressful. So, you know, live and learn but it just goes to show how important this really is so we can ultimately live out our mission.

Katie: Yeah, definitely. What do you find are your kind of go to self care things that you can work in, even with the busy schedule?

Lauren: Well, I’m a massage junkie. I will go anywhere and anywhere for a massage. So, I was just telling you I went to Thailand a couple of weeks ago and I always find time to travel. That is my favorite number one thing to do. So, when I was in Thailand, as many of you guys listening would know, if you’ve gone to Thailand, it’s really cheap for a good massage. So I got I think seven or eight massages in two weeks. So massage is my number one. I probably do that at least a couple of times a month. One of the most powerful self care things you could do that costs nothing is walking. And I know it’s not this super sexy thing but walking lowers stress
hormones, it gets you outside, it gets you some oxygen, it gets you the sun exposure, so you’re getting that serotonin boost.

You’re helping to reset your adrenals. And so I have a commitment with myself, I’ve written my rules of health that I live by. One of main commitments is that I walk one to three times a day. So, three is like, you know, morning, mid-day and evening. And that’s a rocking, you know, success that day and I feel so good when I do that. But I mean at least once a day I go for a walk and it’s amazing. Like amazing how you could feel so stressed out about something. You say, “Okay, I’m just gonna press pause and go for a walk. Just get some fresh air.” You come back feeling completely better.

And it ends up improving productivity. So, I would say massage and walking are big for me. And then I’ve really prioritized my sleep, so much more than I used to. I mean that’s probably the biggest factor for me in maintaining what I’ve been able to do with my sleep.

Katie: Yeah, I’ll echo that 100%. And I love the walking tip because I think it’s so underrated and I actually know some moms locally. I love this…they do this. They all have young kids and so the kids are in school. They can’t, it’s hard to get away. So, a couple of times a week, they hire one babysitter to watch all the young kids at one of their houses and they just go for a walk with like a bottle of lemon water and they go for a walk for an hour. And they get to meet up and socialize and like isn’t that a great idea? And they’re all pitching in so it’s like $5 or less for the babysitter.

Lauren: Oh, my gosh, what a good idea. That’s what I’m talking about, that is a perfect example of, you know, finding ways to bring in self care. And I just, ugh, that is amazing. I love that and how often is it that it’s when we try to do everything, you know? And all of us feel like this from time to time. So, I love that. How can you put your heads together and have so much fun and get that time for yourself. That’s awesome.

Katie: Yeah. And literally for each of them, like the price of probably a good cup of coffee at a coffee shop, they’re getting an hour of time away and light and exercise and friendship and all that. It’s so fun.

Lauren: That’s amazing, so easy. It’s awesome.

Katie: Exactly. And you mentioned sleep, so I’m going to like, put you on the spot. How much sleep do you get on a nightly basis and what time do you go to bed?

Lauren: My bedtime goal is 10:00 every night. And I’m usually pretty good about it. I naturally wake up eight hours later, so that’s just how my body is. I wake up eight hours later. I do wake up a little bit earlier than I used to which is annoying. Sometimes I want to sleep in and I can’t anymore. But 10:00 is my bedtime and I’m real serious about my sleep. I keep my room cool. I got the blackout curtains. I use my swannies, you know, my amber glasses once the sun goes down. I dim my house. I put all my lights in my house on dimmers. My boyfriend calls me a Gremlin because it’s like lights are going to kill me or something.

And, you know, I really get my zen on. The one part that’s difficult is not looking at the phone. Even though I do have my glasses on and I do have that little night shift, you know, feature on, that’s been the one thing that’s been hard to kick out. But yeah, I’m pretty crazy about this sleep routine.

Katie: Yeah, us too. In fact, I’ve now finally transitioned our house. We have different light bulbs. So during the day we have like the full spectrum ones and at night the lamps go on that are amber, and like they automatically do it on timers at night time.

Lauren: Don’t you notice the difference?

Katie: Absolutely. In fact, I was for a while testing my cortisol because it’s pretty easy to test when I was making that transition, and it was drastic because I had like way jacked up cortisol, like when it was supposed
to be high it was low and vice versa. And just the light, like not changing anything else, no crazy supplements, made a huge difference.

Lauren: Yeah, I really think that did it for me, too. I checked mine and I don’t have adrenal fatigue. I healed my leaky gut and I think me healing up my adrenals really, really helped that to happen. So, yeah. And I swear, the walking and the sleep, that’s what did it for me.

Katie: Yeah, and I will make sure to link in the show notes as well because we also do the orange sunglasses. And I found some pretty inexpensive ones and they have kids sizes.

Lauren: Oh, so cute.

Katie: So if you like, I don’t want to be that mom who’s like, “We’re going to live so healthy that we never have fun.” So we still have family movie nights sometimes which, you know, are not ideal but we wear the glasses and the lights are dim. Then it’s a good family time.

Katie: Yeah, totally. You just make it a fun thing. It doesn’t have to be this serious medical thing. It’s just, yeah, you just make it fun.

Lauren: Exactly. So, I know the question I’m going to get from listeners is like that’s great that you get sleep, like what about people with kids? Are there things we can do even if we are going to have to be up during the night to optimize the little sleep that we do get? And what do you recommend?

Lauren: Well, you would probably be better for the kids questions because you are a successful busy mama. And I haven’t had the blessing of having a child yet but I, you know, what I do a lot with is helping parents with their own self care. To where if they do wake up, you know, throughout the night they can fall back asleep easily and not feel like a train wreck in the morning. So, you know, I’ve had like a good amount of patients who are breastfeeding and now having a baby who wakes up. And, you know, after working together it’s not, it doesn’t like wanna kill them, you know? They still feel like they can survive through it.

So, I would say for sure getting vitamin C levels higher because vitamin C is going to help that cortisol to be more balanced. It helps the adrenals work better. So that is one easy thing right away if, you know, if you’re stressed and dealing with kids who are waking up, start upping your vitamin C, usually like 1,000 to 3,000 or 4,000 milligrams is kind of a good number for people. So, that’s one. And, you know, taking a B complex. A B complex liquid or a capsule, making sure you’re getting good, you know, spectrum of all the Bs. If you’re going to look at the B12, look methylcobalamine, that’s the best form of it is the methyls.

So, just remember the word methyl, it should start in the beginning of the B12 form. And so those two things right off the bat would probably already help if you’re not doing anything else. And then you can do things like different herbs for example can be great, like ashwagandha is a great adaptogen for the adrenals. If you’re dealing with stress, l’theanine is a great one. That’s one for pregnant women, for breastfeeding moms they can take that if they’re feeling anxious or stressed out. So, yeah, and just knowing it’s not going to be permanent, right? It’s just temporary but things that kinda help you through it.

Katie: Yeah, exactly. Do you have a favorite form of vitamin C or what do you usually recommend for people?

Lauren: I love Thorne. So we use at the clinic, we use Buffered C or use the vitamin C with bioflavanoids. People tend to do really well with it. And the vitamin C has magnesium and calcium and potassium in it, so it’s nice little blend. I also really love the liposomal vitamin C which is the liquid stuff. I can’t remember the brand but they also make like a glutathione and alpha-lipoic acid, it’s kind of a liquid, and those are awesome. Love all of those.

Katie: Great. Also, so speaking of nutrient deficiencies, let’s talk about IV therapy because this is something
kind of new and unusual and like, it’s barely starting to get to my side of the country right now. But it’s something you’re super well versed in. So, explain what that is to someone who’s never heard of it.

Lauren: Yeah. So, you know, you guys have seen IVs when you go to hospitals and stuff where they are doing fluids or different medicines. Well, it’s basically vitamins that’s administered in that way. So you can have just fluid that’s administered into the veins plus vitamins. So vitamins, minerals, like all your B vitamins, your minerals like magnesium and your calcium and your zinc and copper. Different antioxidants like I mentioned glutathione earlier which is that master antioxidant. You can actually have that put into the formula. So it’s a way to just give you so much nutrition and it completely bypasses the digestive system.

So, there’s no question of what’s gonna get absorbed. It’s 100% absorbed. So I just found that it’s a way to help people feel better faster, especially if there are digestive issues or if someone’s really busy. And also if someone is traveling a lot, you know, unfortunately, planes are often times bombed with pesticides before or after you’re on it. Side story, when I was actually flying from Vietnam to Malaysia, they actually bombed the plane while on it with, they like fumigated it. So that was really creepy, fortunately that’s the only one time. But I definitely loaded up on glutathione after that. That was a wild experience.

But still, if you’re not, you know, experiencing that, they’re still gonna be doing that on the plane. You’re exposed to a lot of stuff and the different radiation and so things you can do to help really increase those antioxidant levels is gonna give you a lot of protection from, you know, just the oxidative stress of that. So, I love doing glutathione in an IV and it’s just magical. You know, like having a patient come in who has maybe ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s. I have a one patient in particular I can think of and when she first came in, her face was just almost yellow toned. Her face just kinda looked sunken in. She was young too, probably in her late 20s.

Her hair was like straw and she was so thin and frail, and she had just given birth to her second kid and she was just so depleted because she had this digestive disorder where she couldn’t absorb nutrients. Plus, she just had a baby so the nutrients that she did have she just shared it with her baby. So, she was just really depleted and she and her husband drove to see us a couple of hours I think, at least a couple of times a week for maybe a couple of months, you know. And we really had some work to do with her but it was like, miraculous. She looked like a completely different human. Her face got more hydrated, her hair started to look shinier. She had energy, her color came back. And she really swore that it was the IVs that did it for her.

Katie: That’s awesome. So, talk a little bit about what it means to be a naturopathic doctor because like in our area, there’s not a lot of them. And I like love that there are so many in your area and I love working with naturopaths. So, what is that for someone who is not familiar with it?

Lauren: Yeah, for sure. So you probably remember the old school days when doctors would go and do home visits with the cute little doctor bag. Those were naturopathic doctors. So, we’ve been around for actually quite a while. It’s just that we almost died out as a profession as conventional medicine kind of grew in the middle of the last century with the advent of, you know, antibiotics and surgical interventions and things like that. But we stayed on, we held on by a thread and now we’ve had this resurgence as a profession that’s growing like crazy which is awesome because we need it so much in this country.

So, naturophatic medicine is basically a discipline where we’re trained as primary care doctors. So we can diagnose, we can treat, we can order x-rays and mammograms, and order labs and all that stuff. And we can also diagnose conditions and we can also write medication prescriptions, or depending on the state where we practice. But the difference is that we really have a different philosophy. It’s not like, okay, you come in with a headache, I’m gonna give you an anti-headache medicine. It’s really about digging in and saying, “Why do you have a headache? Are you dehydrated? Do you have a nutrient deficiency? Maybe do you have, you know, imbalance of your hormones? Or you have heavy metal exposure?”

Like we are detectives, we get to the root of the problem and that’s why we do so much testing or I do a lot of
testing in my practice because I wanna get to the root issue. And then let’s say, “Okay, great. We find out you have this, this, and this issue.” What’s the best way to treat this for the patient where we start with the least invasive first and see what works. So, maybe you just need to drink more water. Go drink water, you know, maybe of high stress levels or it could do something more serious. But we have a lot of tools whether it’s herbal medicine, whether it’s using supplements or diet changes. Like we’ve been talking about all this lifestyle stuff.

A lot of times it’s just changing up your schedule and putting more time for self care in there and a lot of it gets better on its own. But I wouldn’t know that if I didn’t have a lot of time with my patients. And then things like IV therapy and some naturopathic doctors do, you know, vasectomies even or remove moles and that’s what they do in their practices, more kind of dermatology stuff. So we can have a lot of different ways of practicing. And some naturopathic doctors do research or they just lecture. You know, some have practices, some work in hospitals, so we can work in a lot of different ways.

But the underlying philosophy is the same is that the body is innately intelligent to heal. You know, we’re not smarter than your body. Your body knows how to heal. If you cut your arm it’s gonna heal on it’s own. You don’t need to rub herbs on it necessarily. Yes, we can help speed up healing but just knowing that and honoring that about your bodies that you are designed to be healthy. And it’s just about getting to kind of the root of what, you know, got that off track and that’s what we’re always looking for.

Katie: Yeah, I love that. So, where can someone find you? You mentioned that you also treat patients all over the country. Can you do long distance stuff or people fly into you?

Lauren: Yeah. So, there’s a couple of ways that it works. If you want me to be, you know, your doctor where I’m basically diagnosing, treating that kind of stuff, you do have to come see me in person once. If we’re just doing consulting stuff where we’re doing more lifestyle stuff, maybe looking into some nutrition testing and getting more of that going, we can do that from a distance and I don’t need see in person. But yeah, I treat, lots of my patients are out of state because I have this podcast, Dr. Lo Show. And I’ve been doing it for six years so people have been hearing me over the years.

And so I’m used to working with people from a distance, so really there’s no limitation. The only limitation is maybe getting IVs and things like that. But, you know, a lot of different states have it and I can help direct you to wherever in your area, you know, you can find that.

Katie: Awesome. And where can people find you? What’s the best website? I know there’s a couple.

Lauren: Well, yeah. So, for my practice it’s shinenaturalmedicine.com, if you’re interested in looking into being a patient or kind of more how we work as a practice. Also you can find me over at drlaurennoel.com, so it’s D- R-L-A-U-R-E-N-N-O-E-L.com.

Katie: Awesome. Dr. Lauren, thank you so much for being here. It’s so much fun to chat with you and we’ll have to do a round two one day.

Lauren: Yeah, thanks for having me.

Katie: If you’re enjoying these interviews, would you please take two minutes to leave a rating or review on iTunes for me? Doing this helps more people to find the podcast which means even more moms and families could benefit from the information. I really appreciate your time and thanks as always for listening.

Read Transcript

Thanks to Our Sponsors

This episode is sponsored by Mama Natural. My good friend, Genevieve, also known as Mama Natural, has just come out with a game changing pregnancy book called “The Mama Natural Week To Week Guide To Pregnancy And Child Birth“. If you or anyone you know is pregnant, I strongly recommend picking up a copy or just grabbing one to donate to your local library. It is an incredible resource and definitely one of the best resources I’ve seen for new moms. Genevieve also has a wonderful free week to week email series for pregnancy. You’ve seen these on other websites but this one is a natural take on week to week emails that tells you how your baby’s growing, what milestones he or she’s hitting, all that cool stuff and it’s free.

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Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. WellnessMama.com is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


13 responses to “079: Dr. Lauren Noel on Using Naturopathic Medicine for Hormone Imbalances”

  1. Rose Avatar

    Thank you so much for having a transcript of this interview. I learned a lot of helpful information.

  2. Gayle Avatar

    Please slow down…..It is so hard to keep up with her….:( good info but will have to listen to it twice

  3. Connie Kiser Avatar
    Connie Kiser

    What are your thoughts on natural bio-hormone therapy for hormone imbalances, such as the hormone pellets (as a delivery system) like bioTE?

  4. Linda P. Smith Avatar
    Linda P. Smith

    Please send me something about how to regrow hair that I have lost on my scAlp something I can wash my hair in or a vitamin I am hypothyroid something that will work some companies put things out there just to sell I need something that will work .please if u have anything that will work and could suggest I would really appreciate it from someone who doesn’t want to lose her hair.

    1. Han Avatar

      I add two tbs of collagelatin from grassfed cows to my morning butter coffee mix.. We do the Weston price diet with no sugar and no grains. My nails stopped breaking and my hair is shiny and strong now and the thinning parts are regrowing! I was so bummed about the hair earlier. Now it’s better than it’s been in decades. Highly recommend nutrition and healthy fats as the solution. Also rub a few drops of young living (my CSA buddy sells them) cedarwood oil on the scalp, changed shampoo and conditioner to Dr Bronners, and got a boar bristle brush…the thinning hair really stressed me out, so I did everything I could. Good luck!

    2. Lauren Avatar

      I’ve heard wonderful things about Castor oil! Look on Etsy for some hand made natural serums etc for hair growth 🙂

  5. Jessi Avatar

    Any recommendations for a night light that has an amber glow that I can use in the bedroom? I need a tiny bit of light to see when I am nursing or changing a diaper.

    1. Han Avatar

      You can be super cheap and just grab an amber bulb from Home Depot and put it in a desk lamp. But salts lamps are amazing.

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