743: Overcome Food Cravings, Negative Self-Talk, and Body Shaming With Dr. Tabatha Barber

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Overcome Food Cravings, Negative Self-Talk, and Body Shaming With Dr. Tabatha Barber
Wellness Mama » Episode » 743: Overcome Food Cravings, Negative Self-Talk, and Body Shaming With Dr. Tabatha Barber
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743: Overcome Food Cravings, Negative Self-Talk, and Body Shaming With Dr. Tabatha Barber
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I’m talking with Dr. Tabatha Barber again today for part 2 of this series. Our conversation on women’s health shifts into food cravings, body image, and other really helpful topics. Dr. Tabatha is an OBGYN turned functional medicine doctor who is triple board certified. And after her own frustrating experiences with conventional medicine, she now helps women find their voice and make informed health decisions.

Dr. Tabatha starts by sharing her experience with a traumatic teen birth, Hashimotos, IBS, and other health conditions. She was tired of the bandaid approach to medicine and knew there was a better way! Our conversation today centers around the mindset piece of physical healing and why it’s so crucial. We talk about why fasting can be such an important tool and how negative self-talk is detrimental to our health.

Most importantly Dr. Tabatha offers a lot of hope and solutions for women struggling in these areas. She has a new book coming out and a lot of really good resources that can help! So please join Dr. Tabatha and I as we discuss these important pieces of finding health and healing.

Episode Highlights With Dr. Tabatha Barber

  • Her amazing story of overcoming pain, Hashimotos, IBS, depression, and burnout
  • How this led to her work in helping women seek answers and make informed choices
  • The pivotal event that shifted the course of her career and life
  • Why autoimmune conditions are reversible!
  • Helpful tools for addressing root causes and partnering with our bodies to find healing
  • Why it isn’t the doctor healing you—it’s the innate intelligence of your body and its ability to heal
  • Your body isn’t betraying you ever… it is always on our side
  • Thyroids don’t just fail, so what is actually going on?
  • How to reprogram the mental scripts that might be keeping you stuck
  • The power of fasting and how to do it as a woman

Resources We Mention

More From Wellness Mama

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This podcast is brought to you by Wellnesse. And this is a company that I got to help co-found and formulate the products for and one that I care deeply about. Oral health has been a fun research topic for me for well over a decade. When I discovered I had some cavities and started learning about the process of remineralization and how our teeth have the ability to stay stronger and healthier, dependent on a lot of factors, including our nutrition, our oral microbiome, and the environment of our mouth. And this is why we use something called hydroxyapatite, which is a naturally occurring mineral that is used in the enamel of our teeth. And there’s some fascinating studies that show that this is really effective at helping keep teeth strong and healthy. And this is also why I chose not to use fluoride in my products. Hydroxyapatite has many of the same upsides without the potential downsides that come with fluoride and is certainly much safer for children as well.

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Hello, and welcome to the Wellness Mama podcast. I’m Katie from wellnessmama.com, and I am back with Dr. Tabatha Barber to talk about overcoming food cravings, getting rid of negative self-talk and body-shaming language, and the whole mindset piece as a follow-up to our first conversation about women’s health and gynecology. This one really delves into the mindset side, into some really powerful tools that we have at our disposal to help both the mental and the physical side of healing, including things like fasting.

And she tells her story of overcoming Hashimoto’s, IBS, and a host of other problems, and how this led to her work in becoming a triple board certified in obstetrics and gynecology, menopause medicine, and functional medicine, and how in her work, and as the host of The Gutsy Gynecologist podcast, her whole mission is to really give women the power and the informed consent to make decisions that actually lead to long-term good results in healing and not just Band-Aid approach. And she has quite the incredible story related to that, having undergone interventions that she was not given informed consent about that led to lifelong health consequences for her that now really inspire her to help people make these changes. So, without any further wait, let’s join Dr. Tabatha Barber. Dr. Tabatha, welcome back.

Tabatha: Oh my gosh. Thank you. I’m excited.

Katie: Well, I loved our first conversation. I will link to that in the show notes. We get into a lot of foundational and background information on women’s health. And in today’s, I want to tackle a whole, what I feel like is a really complimentary and important topic to this, which is kind of the mindset side, the negative self-talk, a lot of the inner stuff we face as women and pair that with some of the practical things that can help from the physical side as well. But to start off for context in this one, if you’re willing, I would love for you to share a little bit of your story because I think it brings a lot of hope and context to this conversation. And like you, I also overcame Hashimoto’s. So, we have that in common. And I hear from a lot of women who want to know, how did you do that? How do I fix mine? So, if you’re willing, can you share some of your backstory and how you became so passionate about the work you do now?

Tabatha: Yeah, absolutely. It’s really important to know if you have an autoimmune condition. That’s number one. I learned that the hard way. So, I got pregnant at 16. I ended up marrying my boyfriend in 11th grade. I dropped out of school after that. So, I never finished 12th grade, but I had such a traumatic delivery. I pushed for over three hours, and eventually the doctor came in, and I thought he was going to save the day and give me a C-section. And instead, he used forceps and tore me from front to back. I was never the same after that. I still have complications to this day.

And it turns out he was a family practice doctor. He couldn’t give me a C-section. There was no other option. The baby had to come out the way it had to come out. And there was no discussion when he walked in the room. Literally, he just put me up in stirrups and the event happened. And so, I really have been on this mission to teach women to speak up for themselves, to ask questions and to seek alternatives because there always is another choice. There were other choices for me, but they were not presented to me, and I didn’t know how to ask for them as a 17-year-old girl.

And so, after that delivery, here I am dealing with these incredible vaginal issues, the emotional trauma, and my body was never the same. I had purple stretch marks across my breasts and my butt, and it was very traumatic. But all of a sudden, I started losing a ton of weight. I was very anxious. My heart would race. I would sweat and just feel this crazy out-of-body experience. I would imagine that would have been what it felt like to be on cocaine. It was like crazy feeling. And so, I went back to that doctor. And he sent me to the hospital. And I just remember going to the radiology department, laying on some table, and they put an IV in my arm and injected me with something and did some scans. And I was given medication and sent on my way. And it turns out that I had radioactive iodine treatment to burn out my thyroid because I was in a Hashimoto’s storm of overactive thyroid. And they gave me Synthroid because now my thyroid was no longer going to function and produce thyroid hormone. And so, I was going to need to be on this medication the rest of my life. None of that was really explained to me.

So, for a long, long time, I just took the medicine, and I didn’t question anything, right? But I knew that I needed to figure out how to help women. So, I went to nursing school, and I just kept feeling like, I need to be the doctor. I need to be the one that makes the decisions. I cannot just do the orders from the doctors. I have to be the one creating the orders. And so somehow, I got all As in community college. I got scholarships. I transferred. I went through med school, did the whole thing. And that was where I learned about Hashimoto’s and I, it all started to click. I was like, oh my gosh, that’s me. That, wait, that happened to me. Wait, I had that certain, like, I didn’t know any of it. And I realized, oh my gosh, this was an autoimmune condition. My immune system was attacking my own body because of that stressful event that I went through and because of my genetics and because of, you know, everything around me that was happening.

And so, I had this epiphany and this aha, but then I continued on into medical school and you’re really told that diet doesn’t matter. Lifestyle doesn’t matter. Like you just need to get the thyroid hormone medication and that’s the only way to control Hashimoto’s. And we didn’t really understand autoimmune conditions in medical school. It was like, oh, the endocrinologist just manages the symptoms with drugs to suppress your immune system. And so, I just kind of accepted that was my fate. And lived a very miserable life for the next 20 years. So, from medical school up until the age of 40, I lived on garbage. You know, I ate donuts in the breakroom and coffee like five to ten times a day. Because I was sleeping like two hours a night, delivering babies probably five nights a week at a tiny community hospital. I was chief of staff. I had two little children and an older daughter. I had all these things going on. And so, I was stressed out to the max, not sleeping, eating like horrible standard American diet, not really moving my body except to run around and do the stuff I did. And I was probably 25, 30 pounds overweight, but everybody just would say I looked fine, you know, 160 pounds on my little frame. And I just thought, this is life. I was in pain every day. I was in so much pain. I had chronic IBS. I had to run out of appointments with patients because I would just have like cramping and then diarrhea, or I wouldn’t poop for five days and have to take like laxatives and MiraLAX and all of these things.

And I just thought that’s life. That is me. And my patients have the same problems. They just have IBS. They just have depression. Like that’s, that’s it. That’s just what happens. And it wasn’t until I broke my, I had a back injury and I couldn’t move. I went and had surgery, took six weeks off like a good patient, came back on call my third night. I re-injured and couldn’t move. So, I went to the surgeon, and I said, oh, he said, back surgery is like Lays potato chips. You can’t have just one. So, we’ll just put some rods and screws in there. You might herniate above or below. You might need more surgeries. And that is where I was like, time out. I am 40 years old. What is wrong with me? This is not right. And so, I did the unthinkable and I left. I took four months off of work. And I just started studying and researching, and I found the whole world of functional medicine and health and wellness and all the stuff I knew nothing about. And I healed myself with diet and lifestyle changes. I never had that second surgery.

And once your eyes are open, you can’t go back, right? So, all of a sudden, I was like, oh my gosh, I started thinking of all of the patients that I had treated a certain way. And I was like, I could do this with them. They need this. This is what’s wrong with them. And I realized the why of why they were having their problems. So, I tried to practice that way, but within a couple months, my hospital was like, nope, you’re not making enough money. You can’t bill for time. You can’t spend all this time with patients. You have to stop. And I left. And it was the scariest thing I ever did. I left my 401(k) and my salary job, which from where I come from, that was a lot of money because I come from no money. And I just knew I had to do it because it was the right thing to do for women.

Katie: Well, that is an incredible story. And I love that you got to live firsthand what you now get to help people do. I think many of us in the health world got here because of our own struggle. And I’ve heard that in the mental health world as well, that many people get into psychiatry, for instance, because they’ve got something within them that they’re trying to understand as well. And I think that passion fueled by our own pain can be so helpful to other people as well. Like I think of that quote that I admire the people who walk through the fire and come out the other side carrying a bucket of water for the people still walking. And it seems like that’s a part of your story as well.

And like you, I had Hashimoto’s and a lot of other things and somewhat assumed that that was just, I mean, that’s what I was told with Hashimoto’s like, this is what it is. You will never get rid of it. This is now the rest of your life. And I wasn’t presented any alternatives or anything, even as a starting point for research. And like you, I had to learn all that myself. And I see this amazing wave of women now who I feel like are really stepping into that and willing to do the research. And I hear, or I see the memes, you know, online of people who are like, don’t confuse your Google search with my medical degree. And then I see the counter memes that say, like, don’t confuse your medical degree with my research and my knowledge of my own body. And I think both of those perspectives are valid because we need both. But I’m so encouraged by seeing so many people really taking the ownership for their own health.

And it seems like in your case as well, a big part of it was learning to ask the right questions to be able to start getting the right answers. But it sounds like you also addressed the mental and emotional side, which was a huge piece for me as well. And it seems like for women, especially that can be a really important part of the conversation. And you have an amazing book coming out that I feel like really speaks to a lot of those points as well. Like the negative self-talk that we can find ourselves in and how things like even food cravings and body shaming and how that all connects into the picture of what might be going on in our bodies. And I also think anyone who’s been through the autoimmune world, I had to learn to reframe a little bit because when you get an autoimmune disease, they tell you your body’s attacking you. This is the rest of your life. It’s a very negative framing of that. And I think if we can step back and reframe that into your body’s always on your side and it’s trying to tell you something. And right now, it’s doing the best thing for you. Even in these symptoms, it’s doing its best to heal. It’s doing its best to keep you safe and keep you alive because if it wanted to kill you, you would have been dead in half a second with all the things it controls. And so, if we can partner with our bodies and partner with our minds and understand our emotions, it’s a much better starting point for that conversation.

But can you speak a little bit to what led you then to your new book and some of the tools that you present in there? Because I think you really unite all these viewpoints and that’s such an important conversation for women.

Tabatha: Oh my gosh, you’re speaking my language. Yes. Autoimmune conditions, first of all, they are reversible. Like my Hashimoto’s antibody levels were above a thousand when I first tested them in medical school. They are like two in five the last time I checked or something like that. They’re just non-existent. Like that response is no longer happening in my body. So please don’t buy into that lie that you are cursed with this autoimmune condition. There’s so much you can do about it. And you are right. Like we have to trust our bodies and realize that they were created with this innate intelligence to stay in balance, have homeostasis and heal. So, I explained to women, you know, as a surgeon, I would go in, cut through your skin, cut through your fascia, cut through the muscle of your uterus, deliver the baby, and then take suture and sew you back shut. I literally put the tissue together. I did not heal you shut. Your uterus could have been wide open if those sutures came apart. And that sometimes happens, unfortunately.

It, so it’s not the doctor healing you, it’s your incredible innate intelligence of your body that those muscle cells actually grow back together and heal, those skin cells grow back together, but we have taken away the idea that our body has any ability to heal we. We believe our body is failing us. I used to hate my body. I was in a constant fight with, why am I, why are you causing me pain, why are you failing me, why can’t you function on two hours of sleep, what’s wrong with you, and like literally we think that our body is just here for abuse and it’s really not, so we have to reframe that whole mindset. And I love everything you’re saying, that’s what I talk about in my book Fast to Faith is, if you can start understanding your body’s innate intelligence and what it’s trying to tell you and what it, because it’s trying to tell you, here’s what’s insulting me and preventing me from being in balance. Please remove those. Here’s what I need to heal and thrive. Please give me those. And if you can figure that piece out, you don’t really need a doctor and you don’t need all of that intervention. You really do have it within you. It’s like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz.

And it’s because God created our bodies to be able to heal and function. Like if you think about civilization, we have survived and thrived and multiplied exponentially for thousands of millions of years, right? And so, to think that a medical system that has only really been around for 100, 150 years is the answer to our bodies, that is so short-sighted, and it doesn’t even make any common sense. I love teaching women to get back into in tune with their body, hear that wisdom, that intuition of your body telling you what it needs and then responding and shifting your mindset about your body’s not failing you. Your body doesn’t like, here’s a great example, women get mad because they gain weight through menopause. That’s your body’s innate intelligence. Because when your ovaries stop producing estrogen, and they’re done making estrogen for the rest of your life, your body still needs some estrogen. And your fat cells actually make estrogen. So, your body gives you more fat cells to keep enough estrogen to protect your bones and your brain. And I realized this when I was in my practice and my obese patients weren’t really having menopausal symptoms. They were not having hot flashes and night sweats and mood swings. It was the really skinny ladies that had the worst symptoms. And so, I started studying and it was like, oh yeah, because their estrogen levels are higher than the skinny women. And so, your body’s not betraying you ever.

And that is the same as the thyroid, our thyroid didn’t betray us. Our thyroid was under attack, and our immune system was confused. It wasn’t that our immune system was trying to harm us. It was trying to protect us from something. And our thyroid got attacked and wasn’t able to keep up and function. When you have a thyroid issue, you always have to step back and say, why is this happening? Thyroids don’t just fail. That’s another lie doctors say. They believe, well, your thyroid is just sluggish, or your thyroid is just pooping out or your thyroid just can’t keep up. That is not what’s happening. Your thyroid is downregulating to handle those insults because it has to divert resources and go handle something else or it’s under attack and that attack needs to be stopped. So, our body doesn’t fail us. It really, really, really, really doesn’t.

So, I talk about this in my book. I have a whole chapter on thyroid and how it downregulates and is affected by our adrenal glands and in our gut and these different things and how you can reverse it. I talk about blood sugar issues. We get so hard on ourselves, and we think we don’t have willpower because we can’t get, we give into the cravings, and we can’t stop ourselves from eating the junk food. Like I literally was addicted to sugar. I had to have my donuts. I had to have my coffee drinks. I had to have M&Ms at the nurse’s station. And it was because I was eating sugar and not realizing it. I was feeding bad bacteria and yeast in my gut, and they were sending those cravings. So, it wasn’t even really about me. It was about my gut microbiome and about the physiology happening in my brain.

And so, if we can take the shame and the blame away for women and be like, it’s not that you’re weak and that you can’t give this up. It’s that your physiology and the microbiomes living inside of you are running the show and they’re directing things, and you just have to get them back into balance. And so, if you can understand that, you can really reframe why you eat the way that you eat and why you make the choices that you make. And you can finally give those things up and shift for good. You know, I finally got over that, and it’s been eight years now. I have to do the math. I’m like almost 49. And I gave that up at 40 years old. And that has changed my life. So, I talk about all of this in the book. Like if you really want to figure out how to get rid of the cravings, how to break up with sugar, how to nourish your gut and balance your hormones, like it’s all in there. And it’s all doable without the help of a doctor.

Katie: Yeah, I love that. And I love how deep and nuanced you get into really putting that power back in our own hands and giving us the tools to do the experimentation. Because at the end of the day, it’s figuring out our own bodies and learning to work with them. And I’ve noticed this trend even in the health world is that I think there’s so much wisdom in every person that we can learn from. But often when they have figured out this perfect seemingly system, they have figured out what works for them. And we can definitely take some knowledge from that and experiment in our own lives. But I’ve seen over and over the blueprint that works for one expert is not going to be repeatable in every single person because we’re so individual. So, I think tools like yours that give us the power to figure out our own individualized answers are the ones that really work in the long term.

And you also talk about the concept of that you can’t heal a body you hate. And this was a big part of my journey as well. And like you, a lot of my mental energy was consumed with disliking my body and thinking it was betraying me and being annoyed and frustrated with it. And it was really doing the inner work on the mental and emotional side that actually let all the stuff I had been trying to do from a physical perspective actually start to take hold. And I think mindset is a huge part of this conversation as well. What were the things that helped that shift for you and that you now help women with in learning to stop hating their bodies?

Tabatha: So, I went back to the Word. I just went back to the Bible because I thought, okay, if God created our bodies, there’s probably instructions on how to care for them. And it turns out the Bible tells you exactly how to care for your body. It teaches you how to fast. And my favorite Scripture ever is Romans 12:2. It says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” So, it’s all mind games. It turns out that our brain is just a computer, and it will play these recordings of things that have been told to you and things that you thought were true and were not. And those recordings will continue over and over again until you change them, until you put new recordings in and believe new things.

And so, we have to be bigger than our physical body and our mental mind. We have to give back power to our soul and help our soul direct our body and our mind because the body will always just want to avoid pain and feel pleasure. The mind will just be stuck in negativity and fear because it’s trying to keep us in survival mode. At the end of the day, we’re still cavewomen trying to run from a tiger.

And so, you have to figure out how to get control of your mind and your body. And it’s completely doable. And fasting can be one of the quickest ways to get there because you learn how to give up the desires of the flesh. You learn how to overcome cravings of hunger and boredom and emotional eating and stress eating and all the things that we as women do. And so is the more that I kept studying the Bible for our health, I realized that yes, we’re supposed to treat our bodies as temples, and we’re supposed to really honor God by honoring our bodies, but we treat our bodies like garbage cans. I used to just throw things in my body and abuse my body. And really, if you honor your body and get it moving the way you’re supposed to and give it the sleep that you’re supposed to and the food that you’re supposed to, it will give you an amazing life. It will help you move throughout the day and do amazing things that you could never do and feel so good.

But you have to go beyond the physical feeling to do that. And that, you know, you need to create discipline. You need to create consistency. And so, I came up with this approach called FAITH IT. And essentially, it’s an acronym that you want to fast to get yourself focused. You want to ask for guidance and figure out what do I need? Why do I hate my body? What am I missing here? And then you ink it. You write it down. Journaling has been a game changer. And if you study any person who has done something great in history, they have journaled. Successful people journal. So, journal down and ask for guidance, and then thank God that he’s going to provide it. Hear the plan for you. Initiate the action and trust that it’s going to happen. You have to trust. That’s what the word faith means is you just believe that it’s going to happen. You know, just as the sun rises every morning, you, you can count on the sun rising, right? Like, you know, that sun is coming up. And so, if you know that your body is meant to thrive and be healthy and balanced, you can get there. Just take some action, some discipline.

Katie: And I love that you talk about fasting. This was actually a really helpful part of my journey as well. And I feel like there’s a lot of differing opinions, especially when it comes to women and fasting. And I’m personally a huge fan. I actually start each year with at least a seven-day water fast, which I do now mostly for the mental side, not so much the physical side. But in my recovery journey, I fasted quite a bit, even though I know it’s often discouraged for women because of hormones. But I found it incredibly helpful, both from the mindset side, like you’re talking about, and because physically so many fascinating things happen when we fast. And it helps our blood sugar, which we talked about in our first episode. It helps with autophagy and getting rid of damaged cells. It’s kind of like a whole body reset, I feel like, in a sense. Certainly, there are ways to work up to it, to make sure you’re doing it safely and all of those things. But can you just speak to women and fasting a little bit? Because it seems like a lot of women have fear around fasting.

Tabatha: Yeah. Yes, absolutely. And let me just say like my favorite patient ever, she was 72 years old, and she did my fasting program. That’s what this book is based on is a 40-day fasting program. And she had active uncontrolled diabetes. Her hemoglobin A1C, I believe was 8.6 or something like that when she started, it’s supposed to be five. So, she never thought she could get through this program. And she didn’t realize when she signed up that there was a three-day water fast. And when we got to it, she was actually at the point that she was starting to believe in herself because she had gone through a couple of weeks of this transformation.

And so, she jumped in feet first and did the three days. And it was so transformative that her hemoglobin A1C dropped to 6.4, and her mindset completely shifted. She believed in herself, she believed in her body’s ability to reverse this disease and to heal. And that is the game changer. So, I don’t want anyone to be afraid of this.

Obviously, if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you probably shouldn’t be fasting, right? But it is so essential. It was one of the superpowers that was given to us to just heal ourselves naturally. Like you said, if you are struggling with something, fasting is the quickest way to get clarity and hit that reset button. It resets your gut microbiome, it resets your mind, and it resets your attitude.

So, there is definitely a trend for women to be afraid of fasting. People are saying it’s going to mess with your hormones. There is a trend of you need to eat every couple hours for fertility or for PCOS. I don’t know. There’s some new thing every week. That is not how our bodies are created. Our bodies are not created to eat every couple hours because when we eat every couple hours, then we have to produce insulin and our pancreas gets tired of it. Our cells get tired of hearing from insulin. And so, they become deaf. You create this insulin resistance, and you have to make more insulin just to send the same amount of signal of like, get this sugar out of my bloodstream.

And so, all that bad information is just driving us further down the path of diabetes. Our bodies are not created to eat every couple hours. There were not grocery stores on every corner even a hundred years ago. That is not how we’re made to function. We are made to do feast-famine cycles. We are made to go time periods without food and then enjoy some food and then go without again. That is how we are created. And if you’re carrying extra weight that you want to release, you can’t tap into those fat cells and burn that fat off if you are constantly intaking energy from another source. So, if you’re eating carbohydrates all day long, your body will never tap into your fat cells and lose weight. So, if you’re actively looking to lose weight, you want to exercise in a fasted state, you want to, you know, eat more healthy fats and proteins and stay away from carbohydrates because they are an immediate source of energy, and they prevent you from burning your fat cells.

So, what it comes down to for women when you don’t eat after 7 p.m. and then you don’t eat again until maybe 9 or 10 a.m., you’re fasting. That’s your fasting window. People like to fancy it up and call it time-restricted feeding. That’s fine. You’re going a time period without food. And that’s how everybody should function. Maybe not if you’re 8 or 10 years old, and you’re like super crazy active like most kids are, but adults, that is how we should function. So, we should have this time-restricted eating every single day. You should have a time period and you should have at least three hours before you go to bed where you’re not eating. Because digestion goes up for eight hours, six to eight hours after you eat. So, if you stop at six or seven o’clock, your body’s still digesting until after midnight. So, you think you’re in a fasted state. You’re really not. So, I just want women to realize that like you’re not starving to death because it’s been three hours since you ate. You’re still digesting that last meal.

If you want to do longer fasts, know that your body, again, has that innate intelligence and will think, okay, we’re in a healing state. We’re in restoration state. We’re not trying to reproduce and have babies at the moment. So, if your ovaries respond and don’t make the hormones appropriately, that’s a normal response to a fasted state. And so, you might have an irregular period that month if you do a five- or seven-day fast, and that’s okay. If your body is healthy, it should come back into balance, and you should have a period that next month and you should cycle. If you’re concerned about it and you’re actively trying to get pregnant, I would stick within a time-restricted window and not do a longer fast.

So, it depends on your goals. Are you actively trying to reverse disease, especially insulin-resistant to diabetes? Are you trying to heal from something or are you trying to just optimize health and get some mental clarity? You might want to do a dinner-to-dinner fast where you fast for 22 hours. And so, I don’t want women to be afraid of fasting. It’s not going to mess you up beyond repair where you can’t come back. And I love all the data that’s coming out that says maybe that you should do longer fast during certain parts of your month. But the data is limited. It’s all theory. It’s guessing. That’s about it.

Katie: Such helpful tips. And I know I don’t do it a hundred percent consistently, but I feel the best when, like you talked about, I stop eating actually at sunset. I like, I’ve tried to line up with circadian fasting because that gives, especially this time of year, a lot of time for digestion before sleep. And it’s amazing how just that one change can drastically improve your sleep. I know for me, it seems, and again, individualization, but for me, it seems supportive of hormones to shift that time-restricted window early and stop eating at sunset and get like protein and lots of nutrients and healthy fats in the morning. Cause then I have energy throughout the day and that stopping eating at sunset also lets my body get tired more easily. And I feel like I shift into a good sleep cycle much more easily. And then like you talked about, I really enjoy those like three- to five- to seven-day fast, which I did work up to. I didn’t just start with a seven-day fast. I did like a 24-hour and then I did a three-day and then I did a five-day. But if your body’s able to handle those, I feel like they’re really, really profound for what they can do.

And like you said, we’re sort of designed for this. Humans have not, had access to restaurants and grocery stores and snacks for all of human history. So, trust your body’s intelligence and listen to it, but also realize that it may yell at you in the short term, just because it’s used to eating food all the time. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing either.

And I know you have so much more in your book and also online as resources for people. So, I will make sure those are all linked in the show notes and certainly recommend your book. Cause I think you give so many really, really practical, actionable tips that women especially can take to start improving their own health. And then also the, what to do when you run into a wall or you need additional help, then what to do. And I think both of our conversations have centered on the parts that are within our control, which are thankfully a lot of them and that you give people a really good roadmap for that. So, I’m so grateful for the work that you do and for your time. Thank you so much for being here.

Tabatha: Oh my gosh. Thank you so much. And you like, that was a really important point. You can’t just dive into a seven-day fast. You want to work your way into it. And that is the point of this book is to teach people how to get there. You know, it’s a roadmap. And so, I would love for you to go on that journey with us, check it out. We have amazing resources, like you said, and I just want women to not be afraid and to take back control and believe in themselves again. So, thank you so much for this conversation. You’re doing such important work for women. Oh, my goodness.

Katie: Well, thank you. I think moms especially are such a force of nature and I’m so grateful that we both get to talk to moms and help women improve their lives, which then ripples it to all of society. So, thank you for your time. And thanks to all of you for listening and sharing your most valuable resources, your time, your energy, and your attention with us today. We’re both so grateful that you did. And I hope that you will join me again on the next episode of The Wellness Mama podcast.

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.

Thanks to Our Sponsors

This episode is brought to you by Beam Minerals. And you hear me talk a lot about minerals because I find more and more, both from guests on this podcast and from what I’m seeing in the research, that minerals are so important and that we are not able to get what we need only from food anymore. And I love that I found this company called Beam Minerals. They provide all the minerals, electrolytes, and micronutrients that your body needs in a single one-ounce liquid per day. Now, the interesting thing I love about these is that they are naturally formulated in the same ratios of minerals that your body uses. And as we know, minerals work in pairs and teams, so it’s not just about getting the minerals, but getting the right ratios if we want to thrive. These are also unique because they are ionic, which means they don’t require digestion. And that makes them almost 100% bioavailable so your cells get the benefit almost immediately. The other benefit is they taste essentially like water. So they’re great for kids. They don’t have a strong taste. And I have been experimenting with these. And because they’re ionic and so bioavailable, I really do notice an increase in energy almost instantly when I take them. And I’ve been giving these to my kids, especially my athletes, to help them stay fueled for competition and to recover more quickly. They also have a lot of great information on their website, but you can learn more about them by going to beamminerals.com. And if you go to beamminerals.com/wellnessmama and use the code wellnessmama, you can save 20%.

This podcast is brought to you by Wellnesse. And this is a company that I got to help co-found and formulate the products for and one that I care deeply about. Oral health has been a fun research topic for me for well over a decade. When I discovered I had some cavities and started learning about the process of remineralization and how our teeth have the ability to stay stronger and healthier, dependent on a lot of factors, including our nutrition, our oral microbiome, and the environment of our mouth. And this is why we use something called hydroxyapatite, which is a naturally occurring mineral that is used in the enamel of our teeth. And there’s some fascinating studies that show that this is really effective at helping keep teeth strong and healthy. And this is also why I chose not to use fluoride in my products. Hydroxyapatite has many of the same upsides without the potential downsides that come with fluoride and is certainly much safer for children as well.
I really delved into the research around the oral microbiome. And I love that this is now an emerging area of conversation and research. But when our oral microbiome is strong, that helps us avoid both ends of the spectrum. One would be things like strep mutans, which is the bacteria linked to cavities, as well as the host of bacteria that are linked to things like gingivitis. Both of those can be combated by having a really healthy oral microbiome.
So we’ve recently released probiotic mints that have four probiotic strains that help enhance the oral microbiome and by choosing microbiome safe ingredients, as well as hydroxyapatite for tooth enamel in the toothpaste. So you can check out those as well as our full line of haircare products and other oral health products as well by going to wellnesse.com.

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.

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