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96 The 9-step toolkit to transforming food habits in your child with Dr. Sachin Patel

96 The 9-step toolkit to transforming food habits in your child with Dr. Sachin Patel

What if you had a toolbox that told you exactly where to start with your child’s health? Honestly, if we could all just find a place to start, just that one foothold over the seemingly rocky cliffs of food and nutrition, the next foothold is often apparent. Sometimes after years of a healthy, fantastic diet, you might hit a plateau again, and that is when a handy toolkit, right in place can help you find your foothold yet again.

In this podcast, Dr. Sachin Patel leads us through a 9 step toolkit for changing your child’s health and energy, starting with my favorite step 1:

  1. Taste is important. Find out what your kids love. From there we want to make our foods as healthy as we possibly can. 
  2. Don’t give up after the first time. 

You can find Dr. Sachin Patel here.

To know more about your child’s diet and how to get it to do some heavy lifting for their brain health, sign up for my FREE training this week : 3 signs that your child’s diet is NOT working for them

 

 

Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

Did you know that despite years of training and nutrition when I have to change my diet, I still struggle a lot It’s just so hard to stop? And what if you had a toolbox that told you exactly where to start with your child’s health? Honestly, we could all just find a place to start just that one foothold over the seemingly rocky cliffs of food and nutrition. The next foothold is usually really easy, it’s apparent it comes up, it shows itself. Sometimes after years of a healthy, fantastic diet, you might find yourself again in that place, that dreaded plateau, right. And again, we use that toolkit, as long as it’s right in place to find our foothold yet again.

My guest today food health and nutrition thinker, extraordinary Sachin Patel gives us just this toolkit in nine easy steps, such as a father has been a philanthropist functional medicine practice success coach, speaker, author, breathwork, facilitator, and plant medicine advocate. He’s convinced that the doctor of the future is the patient and he’s committed himself to helping others raise their consciousness, activate their inner doctor, and initiate the deepest healing through the use of lifestyle breathwork and respectful utilization of psilocybin.

He’s an advocate of transforming the healthcare paradigm. And he’s devoted his life to the betterment of healthcare for both patients and practitioners. And as I was chatting with searching during this podcast, I simply loved what he said this is actually the first step in the toolkit. He talks about prioritizing taste. And I think that is such a fresh approach to prioritizing taste. Now, of course, sometimes we prioritize only taste, and that can boomerang on us. Right.

Now, as you listen to this podcast, I hope you will be motivated to make a change. But it’s also important to know what change might look like for your child. A trip without a roadmap is not of much use. In this context, I’m offering free training three times over the next week to share how your child’s diet may not be working for them. In fact, it is three signs that your diet is actually not doing its job.

And you can sign up at functionalnutritionforkids.com/3signs/. And it’s the number three followed by the word signs. Again, it’s functional nutrition for kids.com/three signs. The link is also in the show notes, wherever you’re watching, or listening to this episode. Now do listen on as such, and leads us to commit to change even if you’re coming from a place of overwhelm. Welcome, Sachin, thank you for being here on this podcast. I’m really excited to talk to you today.

Dr. Sachin:

Myself, as always, thanks for hosting me, and I’m excited for our conversation.

Vaish:

Absolutely, I’m, I had a simple question in my mind to start off. And as I was framing this podcast, that question is, how does one commit to change from a place of overwhelm? Because many of the parents listening to this podcast are overwhelmed with messages of acceptance, on one hand, you know, accept your child as they are. And then messages of change, on the other hand, change the food change the environment, change learning strategies, both of these messages are also ones that, you know, I’ll provide through this podcast. And even though acceptance and change don’t have to be the contrary, they sound contrary. And to add to that parents of children with disabilities are living in a world with messages that are coming in of, you know, you are not okay, or your child is not okay, this is not okay, or that is not okay. So, realize that I’ve complicated my question, but I’ll simplify it again, to rephrase, how do you commit to change from a place of overwhelm? And how do you know what change to commit to?

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, that’s a great question. And I don’t think there’s one right answer to this. One thing that I will say is that the best thing that I can offer people is to learn to be present. I think a lot of times when we’re not present at the moment that’s in front of us, our head can get stuck in the future, or sometimes it can get stuck in the past, and the voices from outside of us can overwhelm or block with the voices that are coming from inside of us.

A lot of times, even for my clients, you know, the thing that we always want them to do is to be present to the what the as is, as Dr. Shefali would say, is be present to the as-is and, you know, there’s whatever is going on, it might feel like a mess, but there’s a message in that mess. And we want to pay attention to, you know, to be able to read through the lines, you know, what is this moment trying to teach me or what is this?

You know, what is the opportunity at this moment that I can learn from and, you know, there’s going to be lots of noise in from the outside world. And so the key for me is always to be present, shut out the outside noise and pay attention to the inward you know, the sounds and the voice that’s inside of us that is He’s always there to guide us.

Vaish:

When one is in a state of overwhelm, what does that mean from a? Maybe a biochemical perspective? So what is it that is there anything concretely you can do to shift from the place of overwhelm, because sometimes it’s really hard to find that center and to find that presence when it’s just every selling, you just want to either run away or hide your head under the sand?

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, I think, you know, overwhelm comes from not knowing what our next step is. And so you know, it’s a lot of times overwhelming is, is not knowing what we need to do in order to make the situation better. So our mind is very good at creating usually false negative realities, versus creating positive, and, you know, meaningful realities are moving in the direction that we want to create. So overwhelm is oftentimes, a result of not knowing what that next thing is that we need to do. So a lot of times, you know, we want to take inventory of the things that are overwhelming us, identify the things that we can actually change, and then identify the things that we have no control over.

Then really take ownership over the things that we can control. In terms of the chemistry of what’s happening to somebody, it’s usually when we’re in a state of overwhelm like that, that we’re in a fight or flight response. And in that fight or flight response, we’re not actually even using the part of our brain that can help us come up with a logical, creative, and elegant solution to whatever challenge we’re facing. So again, being present.

The best way for us to be present is by using our breath as a tool. So we’ve heard this, you know, I know, I’m probably preaching to the choir, and many moms and dads have probably heard this before. But when people say, hey, just relax and take a deep breath, you know, there is a little bit more context to that, you know, that, that we could probably unpack here. But you know, getting into a relaxed cadence of breath, doing something like box breathing, can be a very powerful way to induce a parasympathetic state.

In that parasympathetic state, we’re capable of creating an elegant solution. And that takes us from a place of overwhelm, to now being able to overcome so we don’t want to stay stuck in the overwhelm. If we stay stuck in the stress state, then we’re just going to, we’re just going to spiral downwards. But if we shift into a parasympathetic state, now we’re in an overcome state. So we can come up with a solution for whatever challenge we have.

Vaish:

So Breath, breath is the first step.

Dr. Sachin:

Breath is the easiest thing that we can change, you know, and doesn’t cost us anything, it’s a matter of raising awareness around our breathing patterns. And something like box breathing is something that helps us quickly shift into that relaxation state. So box breathing is where you take an inhale for four seconds, hold for four seconds, exhale for four seconds, and hold empty for four seconds. And you repeat that pattern just like a box. So you would do that for a couple of minutes. And what’s amazing is that, when you’re in a state of stress, a minute goes by like this, when you’re in a state of calm and relaxation, and using your breath as a tool a minute feels like an hour. And this is why a lot of people don’t shift gears and use their breath, because they’re illusion by the passage of time thinking, oh my god, I’m spending so much time doing this, when in reality, in a short period of time, you can really shift the state of your physiology and your mental and emotional state as well. In a fight or flight state, a, you’re not remembering anything, b You’re not at all creative.

You’re not even able to come up with you know, an elegant solution to your problem. And time just flies. So slow down, take a few deep breaths, you know, do the box breathing technique for a couple of minutes, and recenter yourself and watch what happens. It’s pretty remarkable. And here’s another interesting thing, that story that I want to share is that this actually happened to my client.

Her son was having major behavioral issues, and just not cooperating with her. And she’s a principal at a school. And they had indicated to her that she needs to medicate her son, because of his behavior. And so she joined our program, she was dealing with a lot of stress and struggling with weight and all those things that come along with imbalanced hormones. And so we had her do some breathing techniques using specifically a device called Heart Math.

Heart Math is a Neurofeedback tool that you clip to your ear and it tells you what state of coherence you’re in. And when you’re in a state of coherence, which you can get to using breathing and thoughts, your heart and your brain are connected. And it’s that heart-brain connection that many of us have lost a lot of times stuck in our heads. And really to help our child we want to get you to know in our heart because that’s when we come up with you know, a loving solution to the problem instead of a very logical solution.

Think of the brain as the masculine think of the heart as the divine feminine. And so we want to have a balance between the two, not just the masculine solution, not just the yang energy But we want to have yin energy to the solution. So by using our breath and using the Heart Math, you know, and Heart Math is like training wheels. So you can, you know, once you’ve mastered your breathing technique, you don’t need the device. But until you know how to do that the device is a very helpful tool.

Well, anyways, within two weeks, she started using the device, and her boyfriend at the time, said to her, did you end up filling that prescription for your son because his behavior has dramatically changed? And she said, No. And she realized very quickly that it was when she changed her energy and changed her electromagnetic field, that her son automatically shifted his behavior. So when she broke down crying when she told me the story, because she realized that, because she’s quantumly entangled with her son, and just were quantumly entangled with each other, she realized very quickly that it was her energy that we as adults can contain, right children, don’t have the gift of the very developed prefrontal cortex.

Sometimes they’ll say and do things that we as adults wouldn’t do. And it’s because we are able to, you know, suppress our emotions, we’re able to suppress that energy and drive it deep. And so for adults, it shows up as a disease. And for children, it shows up as misbehaving. But it’s that energy has to dissipate and transform into something. And so when we get the energy inside us, right, then those people that are in our field, their energy becomes balanced, as well. So you know, with our children, especially moms, moms and children have a very unique connection, because you literally printed your children inside your womb, which is a pretty amazing thing to be able to do. And so that connection that we have, is very sacred. And a lot of times, we over-intellectualize a solution, when in fact, we just need to get re-centered in our heart, and the solution presents itself.

Vaish:

Very nice. There are so many things I really liked about that. I liked that you talked about entanglement because I think everybody listening can identify with that. I mean, I myself know that you know, there is a connection between every mom and every child. But when children are in a state of sensory difference, perhaps you know, because when the five senses are operating differently, as in pretty much probably every child with autism, The Sixth Sense shows up as a little bit stronger. Presence. So and you’re right, you know that time and again, I can see that my mental state is a reflection of my son’s mental state and vice versa. That is so true. While I have many questions, let me prioritize this.

You already have given us two tools. One is the breath and you mentioned the box breathing technique. And you said, the heart rate variability Heart Math, right? Yes, the Heart Math technique. So in the toolbox that we have breath, we would you say Heart Math is the same as breath. It’s neurofeedback.

Dr. Sachin:

I would say, well, you use your breath as the guide, right, so it guides you on how to breathe correctly. So I would say it’s an advancement in breathing techniques. And it’s a way for you to identify what breathing style and technique works best for you. So it’s I like neurofeedback because, for everyone, it’s going to be a little bit different, right? So for some people box breathing at a four-second pace might work well for others, a three-second pace might work better. So by using the HeartMath device, you can figure out what makes the most sense for you, because we’re all unique, and we’re all individual. And it’s always nice to be able to see the shift that’s taking place in your body.

So you know, as you know, as intellectual beings, we want to know that what we’re doing is working. And so the Heart Math allows us to know that what we’re doing is actually moving us in the right direction. So there, you know, they’re unique and different in their own ways. But, you know, you definitely would use your breath to get your HRV in the right state.

Vaish:

Okay, and, and the example that you gave us very powerful of a child regulating through his mom because I know that moms are probably more likely to take action when they know that it’s going to benefit their child as opposed to it’s going to benefit themselves. So when we talk about, you know, impulsivity, hyperactivity, a lot of our work sometimes comes through the realm of food in your Can you mention a few things that are in your toolbox other than what their priorities would be for a child?

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, so first and foremost, the taste is important, right? So we want to make sure that the food tastes good.

Vaish:

I never heard any, it seems like it should be common sense. But you’re the first person to say that taste is.

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, so we have to figure out what our kids love, right? What are the foods that they love? What are the textures that they love? And then from there, we want to make those foods as healthy as we possibly can. So a lot, so a lot of times it’s going to start there. Right. You know, sometimes if we try to introduce foods that they don’t like the taste of or they don’t like the texture of, then it becomes a very difficult thing for us to make adjustments to. But let’s say your child likes pizza.

Well, okay, let’s start there. And then let’s work backward from there. How do we make this pizza as healthy as we possibly can? How do we eliminate genetically modified ingredients? How do we get rid of chemicals, like glyphosate, which is commonly found in weeds, right? So then it becomes an experiment in how can we reproduce or replicate the taste or make it taste even better? You know, one of the things that I love, I love pizza. And when I gave up gluten, that was one of the things that I missed the most. And every party you go to, there’s pizza, and you know, all that, all that stuff. And, you know, I admit that I do miss that.

However, my wife actually found an almond flour, made by a company called simply simple mills. And that actually tastes better than any other pizza crust that I’ve ever had in my entire life. So now I enjoy that. And what’s cool about that almond crust is that it actually has no spike in my blood sugar when I eat it. So typically, when you’re eating, you know, even a typical gluten-free pizza crust as an example, it’s made with rice and starches and potato starch and things like that. And it’s going to spike your blood sugar, but the almond crust, Pizza pizza dough doesn’t or the almond flour pizza crust does not do that. And I was wearing a CGM. And I was shockingly surprised when I saw that I’m like, Wow, this tastes better. It’s much better for me from a ketogenic standpoint, as well.

It’s not raising my blood sugar. So it’s, it’s a win, win-win all around. So you know, start with what your children like. And then, you know, start an experiment and don’t give up after your first time. Like, if I gave up after my first gluten-free pizza crust, then I don’t know where I’d be right now. So you keep experimenting and talk to other parents and, you know, find out what other people are doing that they really enjoy. So secondly, to that, we want to be aware of certain foods that are neuroinflammatory.

You know, I mean, this is important for any child, any adult even should be aware of this, right? So first and foremost, we never want to feed our children, something that we ourselves are not eating, right, at least you can’t have a different diet for your child that’s, you know, healthy and gluten-free, and all that stuff, and then you’re eating crap, right, they’re gonna see that they’re going to be able to smell right through that. And they’re going to feel, you know, they’re going to feel like an outcast, they’re going to feel like what’s wrong with me, there’s nothing wrong with them. There’s something wrong with people who eat unhealthy food. So first and foremost, we want to try to be an embodiment of health, we need to show up in a way that’s supportive of our own health, right?

We got to put our own oxygen masks on first so that we can be there for our family. And so really, a lot of times, it’s not about the child, it’s really about us, like, how are we going to show up in the world? That’s the first question that we have to ask. And then the default is going to allow them to show up better, as well as as a byproduct of you eating healthy you being mindful of your blood sugar, you being mindful of your energy and mitochondria and your sleep and all those other things, you know, that’s automatically going to set up your child for success as well. When it comes to certain foods, as you know, things that I don’t eat, or you couldn’t pay me to eat anymore.

Gluten is something that I’ve eliminated for over 11 years now, since my son was born, I gave it up. Very rarely do I eat any dairy. And I’m personally a vegetarian, I don’t project that on to anyone. But, you know, I find that when we eat adrenalized animals, who are grown in a stressful environment, and under stressful and toxic conditions, it’s hard for me to accept that that energy isn’t passed on to us in some way. So, you know, personally, I tried to, you know, I am vegetarian and I would encourage people to maybe explore that and see if that’s the right solution for them. Because some children are going to be very sensitive to energies that we may not be sensitive to. And so, you know, there’s, there’s that to take into consideration.

Another big thing that’s, that’s often overlooked, that, you know, keep in mind that all of our senses eat right, so our skin eats touch, our eyes eat light, our ears eat sound, right, our nose eats sense, and our mouth, tastes our food. So we have in our senses, all of our senses are eating. So we always want to be careful and mindful of that, right? So what’s the, you know, the auditory environment in your home because that’s going to potentially trigger the nervous system.

What’s the lighting like in your home, you know, certain types of lighting like LED lighting and certain colors, temperatures of lighting can be very disruptive and can actually cause an increase in certain hormones like cortisol, for example, which can make us feel more stressed and more in a fight or flight type of state, which obviously is not good for our behavior. It’s not good for our mental health.

It’s also not good for our hormonal balances, and it causes us to crave the wrong foods. So believe it or not, if your children are bathed in you know, this the wrong temperature of lighting, such as anything above 4000 Kelvin And chances are that they’re going to crave sugary foods more than somebody who’s in the right type of lighting, or who has full-spectrum lighting, which comes from being in the sun.

A lot of our cravings are actually going to come from being exposed to the wrong type of lighting, which is going to cause us to choose the wrong types of foods. And so then when you try to feed your child something healthy, there is a mismatch in the signal that his body’s getting what he’s craving, or she’s craving, compared to what you’re feeding them.

We always have to be careful of lighting as well, that’s something that’s very overlooked, and often not discussed when it comes to food and nutrition because it does affect that. And another thing that I want to always get people to pay attention to is their sleep. So the quality of sleep that you get also affects your hormones, two hormones, in particular, one is called ghrelin. So when we don’t get a good night’s rest, or if our children don’t get a good night’s rest, then they’re going to make more ghrelin, ghrelin makes us feel hungry all the time. So think of gremlins. And then the other thing that happens is we become leptin resistant.

Leptin tells us when we’re full. So if we become leptin resistant, because we’re not sleeping, well, then we’re going to feel hungry all the time. So no matter how much we eat, we’re going to keep feeling that we’re hungry and unsafe, created. And then you know, so you combine that poor sleep with poor lighting, and now you’ve got somebody who’s basically going to be craving, you know, basically, you know, high fat, high sugar, inflammatory foods, never going to feel satisfied, always going to be hungry.

This is going to create the recipe for a blood sugar rollercoaster. And so this can also lead to, you know, inflammatory food choices that are obviously going to affect not just the brain, but globally, it’s going to affect the body as well. And you know, also for parents to keep in mind, there’s something called the gut-brain axis.

Our brain and our gut are constantly communicating back and forth with one another. In fact, there are more signals coming from the gut to the brain, than from the brain to the gut. So it’s a superhighway, it’s a two-way superhighway. And so our gut environment, our microbiome in our gut is playing a key role in our brain and neurological function. And it’s important to pay attention to that as well.

Eating foods that are going to promote a healthy microbiome is very important. So these are going to be fibrous foods, so vegetables and fruits, and eating variety. So if we eat the same foods over and over again, and we feed the same bacteria, although these are healthy bacteria, variety creates balance. And so we want to create variety, a variety of colors, a variety of different food choices, especially plant-based food choices that are high in fiber is going to create a diverse microbiome, and that helps regulate inflammation, neurotransmitters in the body.

Vaish:

Thank you. And that was very well-rounded. I mean, you touched on many areas of like, I would say, maybe a foundational toolbox that anybody can just, you know, get started, you don’t need to immerse yourself in more and more information. And as you were saying this, one of the thoughts that came to my head is that a lot of this is, especially with the light that you were talking about, the information coming from the light is ongoing information, right. So there are studies going on, and it’s kind of like cutting-edge science.

In order to know it to know what to do you need to be up to date with what’s going on in the world yet that itself is another source of stress and negativity just, you know, just information itself. So how do you personally balance the input of information? Because give I’m guessing that doing what you do you have to be abreast with it at the same time, maybe not to abreast with it. I don’t know, what’s the balance?

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, that’s a great question. Because it is it can be very overwhelming. And it can be very confusing because when we get to this the next week, it’s that. So I like to apply common sense and ancient wisdom. So the best source of lighting is the sun. Right? So without a doubt, I think most people would agree that we probably spent way too much time indoors and under artificial lighting. And unfortunately, the lighting sources that are available to us, especially in academic settings, are usually fluorescent bulbs, and these fluorescent bulbs or LED bulbs are you know, toxic in terms of the lighting, color temperature, that because they’re usually about 5000 Kelvin. And so you’re getting this full spectrum of lighting throughout the day, and that doesn’t happen in nature. So as much as we can, you know, we don’t have a choice sometimes. But as much as we can I encourage people to get outside.

You know, getting outside in the sun first thing in the morning is a great time to get outside that increases dopamine that helps us feel much more grounded. It helps it energizes us, you know, in some cultures sungazing is a popular tradition as well. And I try to do that as many mornings as I can. Getting our bare feet in the grass is also something that we can do to help us ground electrically and discharge some of those negative ions. The other thing that you want to try to do is get out in the middle of the day. So midday sun is very important because that helps us increase serotonin and serotonin is, is our feel-good neurotransmitter.

Serotonin is primarily made in the gut. And when you think about it, that’s why they call the gut the solar plexus. So the gut requires proper sunlight in order for it to function properly. And then the third time of the day is sunset, so we can watch the sunset. And that’s a great tool for us to kind of let our body know at, an unconscious biochemical level, that is time to wind down. And then the evening I discourage overhead lighting. So I encourage people to use, you know, lamp shades or up lighting. Because in nature, the sun after it goes below the horizon, there’s no light coming from above anymore, right. So only in an artificial environment would light be coming from above after the sun has set.

In nature, if you were to light a fire, the light would come from the ground up. And so when light hits the bottom of our retina, versus the top of our retina, that sends a different signal to the brain. So we use a special type of bulb, it’s a red bulb, it’s a flicker-free LED. And we use we turn those lights on in the evening after the sun goes down so that our room and our home is group is read. And so what that does is it prevents the production of cortisol, the excessive production of cortisol, and starts increasing the production of melatonin.

Melatonin is what helps us get to sleep at night. But melatonin knows is also a very important immune-modulating hormone. So, you know, we want to get a good night’s rest, build up a healthy immune system, increase our dopamine production the next day, and then also wake up energized, then we have to make sure that our lighting environment is correct. And what’s beautiful about something like this is you just have to make these changes once, right, so it’s only overwhelming if we don’t do anything about it, because it just keeps looming and lingering. Whereas if you just take action, get the bulbs, you know, order three or four, depending on what your home setup is like, and then just set it up and then you forget about it. And then you just incorporate it into your life.

I like to you know, what I like to do is I like to evaluate and start with, you know, kind of working through my day. So and it’s not going to happen overnight, right? So the routines that I have the tools that I have the investments that I’ve made, you know, it wasn’t just like going to an Amazon cart, pressing an order, and it all shows up the next day, you have to find what works for you. So start with your morning, right. So when you wake up first thing in the morning, you know, how can you optimize that experience? Right? So maybe you have a gratitude journal? And you might brush your teeth? Who am I using toxic toothpaste? Or am I using healthy toothpaste? Toothpaste? Am I using a tongue scraper right? To help stimulate my vagus nerve, which helps me stimulate digestion? When do I go to the bathroom? Am I sitting in the right position? Most people sit on a throne.

Our body anatomically is designed to use a squatting position so you can get a squatty potty, right? The water that you’re drinking? Is that high-quality water that you’re drinking? Is it reverse osmosis filtered and re-mineralized? No. So you just kind of take a moment each day and ask yourself, Is this the best that I can do? When you turn the lights? The next time? Is this the best lighting that I can have for my home? Right?

When you’re in the shower? Is this the best water that I’m bathing my family and you know, when you’re using you know your utensils, or when you’re using your pots and pans? Are these pots and pans healthy for me? Or are they toxic? Right, if you’re using Teflon still, then I encourage you to watch the movie black waters. And you’ll see that this is information that was suppressed for many, many millions, not millions, but decades.

Teflon is known to cause cancer. And, and cause a lot of, you know issues for, you know, adults and children. So stop using that stuff, right? So you just kind of take a daily inventory. And then you know, you replace one of these things. So some of these things, you know, one item at a time. And eventually, you know, you look back 30 days later and you realize wow, like what an amazing transformation. Or you might look back a year later and realize that you’ve made a transformation, so ticket, you know, one step at a time and you know, obviously whatever your budget permits, but make that investment in yourself and I like to do things that are passive.

Most of what I teach my clients to do is absolutely free. It doesn’t cost them anything. So it’s not about you know, you know, buying things that are you gonna run out after 30 days, right? It’s not about buying supplements and you have to keep buying them every month or it’s not about doing lab testing, which you have to keep repeating every few weeks or few months. What are the things you can do on a daily basis that are going to move the needle for not just you but your entire family?

You know when you change the lighting in your home your whole family benefits when you change water quality, your whole family benefits when you change the pots and pans the whole family benefits. So what are things that we can do that give us you know four to one return? Because the entire family is benefiting from the process, not just one person.

Vaish:

And I think that perspective is very important. Because a lot of times we’re trying to do things to our kids and too and assuming that we’re kind of immune from whatever it is, like you said, we’re maintaining the same diet, we’re maintaining the same lifestyle. And it’s hard to make a change on both fronts, perhaps, but I think that maybe takes us farther to the long term.

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, here’s the thing, what I learned about I have an 11-year-old, as I mentioned to you, and so I can speak from, you know, being a parent, I can’t speak from having a child who has some of the challenges that some of the listeners might have. But what I do know is that, if we’re going to stand in a place of integrity, we can never tell our child to do something that we ourselves are not doing. And so I, you know, at they say Bruce Lipton says that you know, basically you, you teach your child everything they’re going to learn between the ages of zero and eight. And after that,, their way of looking at the world has been formed. And my job as a parent is done. You know, of course, I have to protect him and provide for him. But his conscious and unconscious belief patterns have already been established at this point. And so I didn’t teach him anything, I just did it myself. So that this was the only way he knew how to live.

Right. So that’s where I encourage people to start start with you. Because the absolute worst-case scenario starting with you is you’re healthier. Right, whereas if we start with our child, then the worst-case scenario is they may not be accepting of the changes that you want to make, because you’re not making them for yourself. And then you end up frustrated, and then it all falls apart. But if you start with you, then you’re guaranteed at least some result and then your child will naturally follow.

Vaish:

And a question that came to my mind of what if it’s a specialized therapeutic diet, but I also thought of the answer, maybe it’s that that’s maybe not where we start, we start with a foundational anti-inflammatory diet and that everybody can if you do need to do a specialized therapeutic diet that may be later, but your foundations are still going to be the same for you and your child.

Dr. Sachin:

Yeah, exactly.

Vaish:

Yeah. Well, thank you so much that that was such a beautiful discussion you we did a full circle, maybe I’ll do an action sheet or a note card to accompany this because we hit on such a matrix of issues. It was really useful. Thank you so much for watching.

Dr. Sachin:

Thank you. I appreciate this opportunity. And, you know, lots of love to all the families and parents that are out there doing their best.

Vaish:

What an awesome podcast now can you believe we’re already on episode 96 Now before I bid you goodbye for a week. Don’t forget to sign up for my free training this week. Three signs that your child’s diet is not doing its job. Remember, you can sign up at functionalnutritionforkids.com/3signs The link is also in the show notes season.

95 Activation of the Vagus Nerve for your Autistic Child – with Dr. Navaz Habib

95 Activation of the Vagus Nerve for your Autistic Child – with Dr. Navaz Habib

If your child has trouble falling asleep, moving from a state of distress to a state of calm, if they have trouble with digestion, they likely have something called low Vagal Tone. The Vagus Nerve is the longest nerve in the body and touches so many aspects of our functioning and is known to be a factor, especially in children with digestive, neurological and inflammatory concerns, and I think that accounts for most of us kids with disabilities.

Dr. Navaz Habib, the author of “Activate Your Vagus Nerve” and host of “The Health Upgrade Podcast” talks to us about things you can do, even if your child is apraxic / dyspraxic. 

Check out this podcast to get 3 things you can implement right away to upgrade your child’s digestion, sleep and mood.

More on Gut Health at www.functionalnutritionforkids.com/guthealth

 

 

Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

If your child has trouble falling asleep, trouble moving from a state of distress to a state of calm. If they have trouble with digestion, they likely have something called Low vagal tone. The vagus nerve is the longest nerve in the body and touches so many aspects of our functioning and is known to be a factor, especially in children with digestive, neurological and inflammatory concerns. I think that accounts for most of our kids, most the kids with disabilities, welcome to functional nutrition and learning for kids. You’re one-stop for nutrition and education matters for your child with Down syndrome, autism, or ADHD.

I’m your host Vaish and I am thrilled to interview vagus nerve expert, Dr. Navaz Habib today. Dr. Nawaz Habib is the author of activating the vagus nerve. He’s also the host of the health upgrade podcast. He’s the founder of health upgraded which is an online Functional Medicine and Health optimization clinic. Dr. Habib consults with high-performing professionals, athletes and entrepreneurs to dig deeper and find root causes holding them back from optimal health. By upgrading the vagus nerve, he teaches how we can optimize our productivity, focus and energy levels, allowing us to experience the effects of upgraded health. You can find this book at www.vagusnervebook.com. And it’s also linked on the show notes. And if you love this podcast, and as I’m sure you would, I would love to have your review wherever you’re listening.

Thank you for being here. Dr. Navaz. I’m so excited to finally have a conversation about the vagus nerve. I’ve been dying to have this conversation for a long time.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Honored to be here. Thanks for having me.

Vaish:

Yeah, can you? Can you let us get started with a deep dive? Can you tell us a little bit about the role of the vagus nerve in our bodies? And as parents of children with disabilities? Why should we be concerned?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, it’s a great question. And it’s something that I think honestly has been overlooked for too long, especially in the medical system that we currently are generally kind of living in the conventional system, we tend to overlook the importance of the control of inflammation within the body, we tend to overlook how we can kind of create an optimal function within our body and to allow for the body to function in the way that it’s meant to. And the vagus nerve is heavily involved in that particular role. And so what the vagus nerve is, is it’s the 10th cranial nerve. So we have 12 pairs of cranial nerves, either nerve that generally comes out from the brainstem, which is just below the brain and sends out these nerves primarily to the head and the face area. And so these are the ones that are involved in vision and taste in the face and eye movements and stuff like that. And they’re heavily involved in a lot of our senses, but the vagus nerve has a much greater role. And so it’s the 10th of the 12 nerves.

It’s a pair of nerves as well. So we’ve got one on each side, and they both come out from the brainstem. And instead of just staying within the head cavity, this particular nerve actually comes down, goes through the neck sends a few branches in and around the head and face, which we can talk about a little bit later with regard to treatment, and how to optimize the function of this. But it comes down alongside the carotid artery in the jugular vein. And these are the two blood vessels that bring blood flow to and from the brain.

They’re the most important blood flow vessels when it comes to being able to think and function and actually produce function within our brain. So you can just imagine how important these two structures are the carotid artery and jugular vein and alongside is the vagus nerve. It comes down through the neck and it continues on into the thorax into the chest area where it sends a branch to the heart and sends up branches to the lungs as well. But it doesn’t just stop there. It actually continues on and goes through the diaphragm, which is the muscle underneath the lungs and goes into the abdomen. And then it basically branches off and innervates almost every single organ in our abdomen. So we’re talking about the stomach, small intestine, large intestine, pancreas, spleen, kidneys, liver, you name it, every organ in the abdomen essentially has innervation from the vagus nerve or it’s getting some sort of signaling to and from the vagus nerve. And so it just goes to show how broad the vagus nerves function truly is.

For those who have a bit of a medical background, or they’ve done some anatomy, vagus literally comes from the root word vague or wondering is kind of what kind of means because it’s the only nerve and the Tire body, that’s not just doing one thing, it’s not just going to one area or one region, it’s going to so many different areas. And so it really speaks to the importance of this particular nerve because it really doesn’t act like any specific other nerves within the body.

Now, it’s really important to understand what information the vagus nerve is playing. So we know that it’s going to the lungs to the heart to all of these other organs, what information is being relayed through that. So about 80% of the information on the vagus nerve is actually afferent. That means that it’s actually signaling from those organs up to the brain. And that’s 80% 80% is actually going from all of those organs up to the brain. Many of us at this point, I imagine in your research, things that have gone on with you, with your kids with the conditions that they may be dealing with. We’ve heard of the gut brain connection, the gut brain axis, and we know the importance of the microbiome, the physical connecting point of the gut brain axis is the vagus nerve. And so that is why it’s so so important, especially when it comes to the types of conditions that we’re talking about when it comes to functional nutrition and kids. And being able to understand that the information that comes through the microbiome is going to be signaled to our brain via the vagus nerve.

Primarily, there are other routes, hormonal routes and other biochemical roots. But this is a particular physical connecting point. It also is involved in the control of inflammation and producing the parasympathetic nervous system. So this vagus nerve has so many different roles. And 80% of that information is coming up to the brain that’s kind of that thermostat, gut brain axis telling us what’s going on within the body, what inflammation is occurring, what organs are working, which ones are not, all of that is coming up in that 80%, we have 15% of the information on the vagus nerve that’s going from the brain and the brain stem down to those organs. And that’s the parasympathetic nervous system. That is what we generally talk about as the rest and digest system. It’s also I want to add one more word there, it’s the Rest Digest and recover the system.

It allows for recovery to occur, it allows for us to be able to take on the stressors that we’ve experienced on a daily basis, and recover from those, okay. And in doing so, as a part of that system as a part of that 15% of the information that’s going from the brain down, it’s also controlling the inflammation within the body.

So inflammation, if we think about it, in the most basic sense, think of it like a car, we’ve got the gas pedal, and we’ve got the brakes, we’ve got the accelerator and the brakes, I have an electric car, so I don’t have a gas pedal anymore. So on the accelerator, we have essentially this Go Go Go idea that fight or flight, which is a sympathetic response. And then we’ve got the brakes, and the brakes are controlled through the vagus nerve. And that’s to control the inflammation. So we need inflammation in an acute state and we get bumped we get in a car accident, something physical, or traumatic happens, we need an inflammatory response to help to say, hate, we need all of these cells to come here and fix the issue.

The problem with inflammation occurs when it’s uncontrolled when we can’t push the brakes, in the same way, that if we push the accelerator on a car, and we don’t slow it down, we don’t have the brakes, that car can go and create a whole lot of damage. Okay, in the same way, inflammation can do the same thing when it’s uncontrolled. And so the function of the vagus nerve is to control that inflammation through a whole system known as the cholinergic, anti-inflammatory system. So essentially, we’ve got these three major systems that are run through the vagus nerve, they’ve got the gut brain axis, and the thermostat of inflammation within the entire body going up in that 80% of information on the nerve. And then in that 15%, that’s going down, we’ve got the parasympathetic nervous system, which is essentially telling our digestive system to turn on to go into a resting state to be able to recover from the challenges that we’re experiencing, and to put on the brakes to inflammation through the cholinergic anti-inflammatory system. Now, if I missed about 5%, and I’ve done so on purpose because that’s where we can really affect positive change within the vagus nerve.

Vaish:

Are you going to get to the 5%?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Absolutely. Yeah,

Vaish:

We can. Okay.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

For sure.

Vaish:

Yeah. Well, my you can tell me this ties into my next question is that when there is an issue with the functioning of the vagus nerve, and I don’t know if that is the same as saying vagal tone, or do those mean the same thing? Okay. So what kind of symptoms would you be seeing in Kids?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, that’s a great question. So vagal tone essentially tells us how strong the vagus nerve is or how much function there is within the vagus nerve. The higher the vagal tone, the more the better the vagus nerve is functioning, and the lower the vagal tone, essentially, the ceiling is a bit lower for how well we’re able to get into those parasympathetic states, how much inflammation control and the gut brain axis, how much information can be passed via that nerve?

Vaish:

So basically, the information highways kind of maybe either be congested or just not functioning well. Okay.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

That’s exactly right. So think of it exactly, you gave a great analogy there is a highway that has a whole lot of traffic, you’re not only able to go really quickly on it, it’s it’s clogged up with too many cars, too much information, and it just can’t handle it because it’s not wide enough or strong enough. Right. So what we would like is a fast-running highway, a highway or freeway that has a good flow of cars, everybody’s able to move along to go where they need to go, and there isn’t a clog, or an accident, or some sort of traffic condition that’s going on within that nerve.

Vaish:

When that doesn’t happen. What do you what, what what do you see?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, so the challenges that we tend to notice in those situations are uncontrolled inflammation, and really poor digestion, those are the two most common things that we find is attributed to low vagal tone and are associated with low vagal tone. So let’s talk about digestion. We know how important gut brain access is, the signals from the vagus nerve that goes to the gut are actually going to stimulate the actual peristalsis, the actual breakdown of the nutrients and the movement of the food along the intestinal tract and along all of the digestive organs. This is where a lot of challenges can occur. So if we’re dealing with like chronic constipation, or a very, very fast gut, it means that we’re not getting that ideal timeline by which the digestive system is able to do its job. So poor digestion, somebody going to the bathroom more than three times a day, or not going to the bathroom every day, I think the ideal number is anywhere between the kind of one to three per day would be an optimal number of times to have bowel movements within the day.

Vaish:

I knew that for constipation vagal tone was an issue, I did not know that you know, more than three times a day could also be a vagal tone issue.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, absolutely. And there’s, there’s some really great, there’s a really great test that I’ll actually recommend to be able to figure out if this is an issue, it’s called the bowel transit time test. So what I recommend is to go and get just a very small amount, you don’t need a lot of it, but just white sesame seeds are one of the easier ones to go and pick up from any bulk food store, just a little bit of them, make sure they are white, you won’t see them if they’re not, what you’re looking for is to take that take those sesame seeds, put them in a glass of water and have yourself your kid whoever is doing the test. actually drink the seeds don’t chew the seeds, it’s important. So our audio can’t. Exactly everybody can break down the seeds. So if you swallow them, and then you mark down the time that you’ve had, the seeds come in. And then what you’re going to do is every time you or whoever you’re testing goes to the bathroom, you’re going to check to see if there are white seeds that are showing up in their stools.

Okay, I see. And you’re going to mark down the time that you first see them, you’re also going to mark down the time that you last see them. And the ideal can be seen multiple times this is a very important piece of the puzzle. Because if you’re finding that it’s happening over three or four different bowel movements, then you know that there’s some sluggishness or you know that there might be pockets at which food is not being ideally moved along. And it’s actually backed up that some of those traffic jams are happening on the gut side rather than on the vagus nerve side. Okay, I see, the ideal amount of time is anywhere between the kind of 16 to 20 hours, that would be optimal. Anything faster than that means that you’re moving along too quickly.

Anything more than 24 hours, we know we’re moving along a little too slowly. Okay, so that optimal number is 16 to 2020 to 24. Not so bad. 12 to 16 May, not bad, but not phenomenal. More, more than 24 less than 12. We know that we’re having an issue there for sure.

Vaish:

I see. So, so both so. So you made the point that both constipation and I don’t want to say diarrhea because it may not be diarrhea, but can be a signal can be a symptom of low vagal tone, correct? Absolutely. Yes. And you also said that the two areas that are most commonly affected are inflammation and digestion and we know that Most kids, maybe more than 80% of kids who are autistic have, you know, digestive issues of different sorts? And I don’t know what the percent is, but many have both gut and neuroinflammation. Yeah. So is that an obvious segue into the fact that you need to work on vagal tone, that’s exactly right.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Essentially, if there’s a breakdown in the gut if the gut is not functioning well enough, because it’s not able to absorb nutrients correctly, or whatnot, whenever there’s a breakdown at the gut lining, it’s going to eventually become a neurological breakdown as well. Our brain and our gut both developed from the same soulmates when we’re a fetus. So we have very particular soulmates that produce neurological tissue. And if we really think about it, the brain obviously is neurological tissue, but so is the gut. Because the gut has more nerve endings in it than our actual central nervous system brain does.

The gut is actually the quote-unquote, second brain, the enteric nervous system is all of these nerve endings on the gut site. And that’s where all of our nutrients are absorbed in from, and they’re meant to go out and the nutrients that go to the cells to allow them to do their job. But within the lining of the gut, we have lymphoid tissue, this gut associated lymphoid tissue Galt, and that makes up our entire body between 70 and 80% of the immune system cells. So by volume 70, to 80% of our immune system is located in the lining of our gut. So if there’s an issue in the gut, it’s going to trigger inflammation. And because we are developed from the same sites, both in our gut and our brain, and anything that breaks down the gut is eventually are pretty quickly, in some cases, going to break down the blood-brain barrier and actually get in and create an inflammatory trigger and inflammatory symptoms within the brain. And that is because it’s triggering what’s called the microglial cells within the brain.

They’re activated because the inflammatory cytokines, these signaling molecules that say, Hey, there’s a ton of inflammation, there’s something wrong, are getting across into the brain. And those microglial cells are saying, Oh, no, we got to turn on, we got to knock down this inflammation, but it’s getting confused because the inflammation is so high, it just triggers more and more, it’s creating an actual breakdown of the brain function.

That can lead to in some basic cases, things like brain fogginess, and memory issues. And in more extreme cases, it leads to adding ADHD, autism, etc. So this is where that connection point comes from. And the vagus nerve is so heavily involved in that system, that it is, in my opinion, the crux of this whole thing, if we can manage to improve the gut brain axis and the vagus nerve function, we’re going to be able to bring that inflammation under control, and actually reduce the symptoms of what people are experiencing both in an acute scenario and chronically.

Vaish:

So you would think of the vagus vagal tone as a root cause as opposed to it. I was going to ask you this question later, but I think it fits in right now. It’s gonna ask you, is it? Is it a root cause of the symptoms?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

it’s on the pathway of the vagus nerve itself requires certain inputs that are going to take whether it is functioning well or not, and dunzo over a chronic period of time, that’s where vagal tone can decrease. So you’re never going to be diagnosed with low vagal tone. That’s not a diagnosis by any means. But it is triggered by certain challenges. When you have a really heavily inflammatory diet, it’s going to trigger a breakdown of the vagus nerve, because the

Vaish:

An inflamed inflammatory diet causes vagal tone issues which can cause inflammation.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Exactly which exacerbates the inflammation. So now we already have an inflammatory diet, we’re allowing for more of the breakdown to occur within the gut, we’re allowing the inflammation level to come up, and the brakes can only control so much. If the accelerator is constantly being pushed, then you’re trying to slow that down, but you’re pushing both pedals at the same time, and the brakes are going to wear out. I love that analogy. breaks down, and that’s where vagal tone decreases.

Vaish:

Wow. Okay, so it’s kind of midstream. But, so when you are addressing vagal tone it’s kind of pointless to be on an inflammatory diet and address it.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, it’s really good. Yeah. Right.

Vaish:

So it all starts I like this because I like the fact that it comes back to the diet because a lot of times we’re looking for hacks that we can do. While not I mean, changing diet is hard work, especially if your child is a picky eater or if your child I mean, it’s just harder with the child. Right. So yeah, unless you start very young. So a lot of times people want other things, but it’s good to know that. It’s not very useful.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, exactly. And really, it does come down to if you can provide good nutrition to your kids. The gut is going to be in a resolved state. It’s Tough I get it. I have a five year old and a one year old. I understand how tough it can be and pickiness does come out. It’s a whole different scenario with kids. But if we train them and teach them what’s healthy and what we want to avoid or minimize, and they learn that from an early age, it’s something that I’ve been able to at least, for the most part, let’s say we follow kind of the 8020 rule of being really good versus allowing ourselves a little bit of leniency.

Vaish:

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And same here with my kids, my daughter is 11. I do at 20. But she’s neurotypical and I’m not seeing any symptoms, I can afford to do that. But with my son, I can’t if I do at 20, all is lost within two weeks. So yes, so we’re, we’re 100. But the way it goes is that with time, he doesn’t even want to eat things like gluten and dairy anymore, or he’ll push away things that are sweet, which I think it’s a learned cultivated response.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

And that’s, like, attributed to your hard work. I totally understand that. Like, it’s been a tough road. But clearly, the fact that he happened to make that decision on his own and realizes what makes them not feel good. It’s a trained response. And that’s wonderful that you were able to do that. Yeah. And

Vaish:

it’s definitely miserable in the beginning for the first few months. But honestly, actually, it’s easier now than, than if we were to eat a regular diet. But coming back to a vagal tone, how can we not everybody’s obviously thinking about this? What do we need to do? How do we work on Rainbow tone?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, it’s a great question. One of the more common things that I find with kids, and this is even true with my younger ones, is that breathing is heavily involved in this entire process. And the fact that most of us don’t breathe correctly, we tend to, let’s think about it very basically. And you can do this with your kids. And it’ll actually turn some light bulbs on, watch your kid and say, take a deep breath in. And you’ll see what they do when they’re paying attention is they’ll go into this full chest breathing, shoulders shrugged, go into that position, even the vast majority of us as adults do this, as well, when in reality, we shouldn’t really be moving any of these muscles, it should be purely diaphragmed.

So the diaphragm is that muscle that’s kind of at the bottom right below the lungs. And the idea here is that we want to create space within our lungs and the diaphragm is the muscle that’s going to do that most effectively, it’s going to create that deepest vacuum and allow for air to come deeper and deeper. And so a really quick thing to check if you’re breathing correctly is to put one hand on your chest, put one hand on your belly, and take a deep breath. And notice which hand is moving, if the hand that’s on your belly is the one that’s moving, congratulations, you’re doing well. If the hand that’s on your chest as the one that’s moving forward and backward, you have to do about three or four breaths to really get a good sense of this. You’re actually breathing with more of your accessory breathing muscles, your intercostals the traps.

This is why so many people really tight trap muscles and upper back muscles. Not only is it the pure, terrible posture that we have sitting on our laptops all day. But in addition to that, we’re not breathing correctly, we’re using the accessory breathing muscles, not the primary breathing muscles. So this is an important piece of the puzzle. If we want to turn on the vagus nerve, we have to signal to our brain that we’re in a calm state. And that requires deep, slow diaphragmatic breaths, deep breaths.

Vaish:

Can I pause you there? Dr. As you said, if you want to signal to your Wait, wait if you want to signal to your vagus nerve that you’re in a calm state, is that what you said, and then also that the vagus nerve itself signals.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Back to the rest of the body? Okay, so this is where our conscious control can actually tell our body where we are. So let’s think of it in a very basic sense. There’s a dog running after you chasing barking, all of a sudden, you’re gonna go into what’s called the fight or flight response, your breathing is going to become short and shallow, right? Your pupils are going to dilate and blood flow is going to go towards your arms and your legs. So you can either fight or run away from the dog or the threat or whatever it is even it happens when your boss taps you on the shoulder and says, Hey, I need to see you in my office right now. All right, so we have this stressful scenario that triggers a stress response.

Our control of that can be simply based on how we breathe. And so we can actually dictate, are we going into the fight or flight side of things with a short shallow breath, which most of us are breathing incorrectly and we’re going into that state because we’re breathing incorrectly, or we can slow that down. Go into that deep diaphragmatic breath, calm everything down, and send the blood flow towards the center towards the core. or the chest and the abdomen and allow for, our function to actually go into this parasympathetic, rest, digest and recover state. And so how we breathe, our breath control is actually going to tell the vagus nerve whether to turn on or off.

Vaish:

So if I were too Sorry, continue.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

If we do this chronically, if we’re breathing through our chest chronically at 90% of the time, and we’re breathing incorrectly, then we’re likely pushing ourselves toward that sympathetic fight or flight response too much. And we’re not allowing the brakes to do their job. We’re not allowing the vagus nerve to turn on, effectively. So when we’re not stressed, we need to be breathing correctly. Watch your kid do this. If you watch a baby breathe, that’s kind of the best signal of how we should be breathing, because they’ve just learned and they haven’t been trained to breathe with their chest. But you’ll notice the belly is rising and falling when they’re laying on their back. That’s what we should be doing.

Vaish:

That’s why. Yeah, and that’s why when you learn pranayama, they say that breath is the bridge between the body and the mind. And that’s the biochemical reason for that.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

That’s the right 100% Wow, That’s that.

Vaish:

That is a fantastic, you know, just a biochemical picture that you gave us. Thank you. Thank you for that. That’s, really cool. And I was checking. I know that now. I mean, I do the second one where my belly goes back and forth. But when before I started learning to read, which is unfortunate that you have to learn but I remember the first time I was asked to read this way.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

That’s exactly right. It’s a trained response. And even like, I’ll find it in my five year old when she gets into one of her like, mood-based just turns on and she gets really upset and she’s crying and she gets into one of these tantrum types of scenarios. A lotus, that breathing is all short and shallow. So my goal always is to a hold hugger, and then say, Okay, let’s take some deep belly breaths.

A really easy way to do this though. Kids, this works really well for my, kid, is they love balloons. So let’s teach them to blow up the balloon that’s in their tummy. Okay, not the balloon, hear the balloon that’s in their tummy. So when they breathe in, we’re blowing up the balloon in your tummy. And as you breathe out, you’re letting that balloon deflate or shrinking that balloon. So the balloon is located within their belly. It’s just a simple visualization that works. So well, literally within three breaths, she’s generally much calmer. I realize I’ve neurotypical kids may be a little bit more difficult when you’re dealing with challenges and autism and ADHD and whatnot. But that breath really is that controlling piece that can be very, very beneficial in helping to bring back that calm state. And the visualization helps them focus on something that isn’t the thing that triggered them in the first place. So deep belly breaths focus on blowing up the balloon in your belly, okay. And I like to put my hand on her belly so that she feels this is where it needs to be working not up, not up top, not within the chest.

Vaish:

And any other techniques for working on vagal tone. Yeah.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

So this is where that last 5% that I kind of has blown over really comes into play. So there are two other functions of the vagus nerve 4% of the information in the vagus nerve goes to the pharyngeal and laryngeal muscles, these are the muscles around the vocal cords and at the back of the mouth and back of the throat. Okay, these are important because these muscles receive motor input from the vagus nerve, meaning that they have a muscular tone when they are turned on. So that means that they can keep our airways open.

The only reason I have any pitch or tone within my voice, the reason I can go really, really low or really, really high is that I have good vagal tone in vagal, signals to the laryngeal muscles that are tightening on the vocal cord. Okay, so that’s an important piece. If you find somebody who’s very monotone with their voice, you’ll notice, you’ll probably notice this more now that I’ve told you. But if you find that somebody’s more monotonous with their voice, they’re not able to really raise or lower their pitch.

It’s very commonly due to some sort of vagus nerve tone issue. I see. And so the muscles there are not triggered well enough by the vagus nerve. So the way to do this is humming humming is one of my favorite tools. This is also great with kids, especially right before a meal. Oftentimes, we’re running around, we’re dealing with all this stress, we’re cooking, they’re running and going crazy. And then we want to sit at the table and nobody can calm down. Yeah, and if we’re all in this fight or flight state when we go and we sit down, we’re not going to get that nutrition that we have worked so hard to get on the plate in front of them, right. So it doesn’t matter how healthy your food is.

If you’re not in a rest and digest state, you’re not going to get that nutrition and so I do a bit of humming with my kids for 36 comes to a minute before the meal, and we all sit down. And then I start saying let’s buzz like A B and we go z are we going to is that the same tone as your own would be when you’re doing like an own practice and meditation.

It’s the idea there with OMA is actually to help center and get the vagus nerve turned on. It’s really interesting that that exact frequency is really well known to turn on your vagus nerve. But there are actual HRV measurements, and we can get into a whole science of that later. But that tone is really helpful. So we want to buzz like a V or we want to hum like a beat we go. And you’ll notice it also slows your breath that slows the exhale down. In doing so it controls you into this deep diaphragmatic breath. We take a deep breath in.

Vaish:

And then we go even during it is coming, right, yeah.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Exactly. Hearing it feeling it, the vibration there, it’s stimulating the muscles around the vocal cords. So it’s actually turning the vagus nerve on a really awesome quick trick to help especially with kids to help calm them down and get them into that rest and digest state and turn their vagus nerve on.

Vaish:

So pretty easy, easy things to do with kids is like focus on their belly breathing. Remind them to do that, especially when in states of you know, either hyperactivity or agitation. And, and hum. Which is probably something that everybody would love to do. Me, may I throw you? What is known in us as a curveball and what is known in India and the Indian subcontinent is a googly?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Absolutely, I understand the cricket pieces to that totally Yes.

Vaish:

Okay. Yeah. That here, so my son and other non-speaking kids. So this is whenever I’ve studied vagal tone in the past because I keep trying to see what can I help my son, he is non-speaking, and he cannot hum on command. Sometimes he can, maybe you can hold it for a second. There are many who may not be using the right terms here. But there are many things that you would think are, I don’t know if the word is autonomic, or would that the body should do automatically but he doesn’t seem to have control. For example, when when we sleep, we close our eyes and then drift to sleep. But when he sleeps, he has to fall asleep for his eyes to close, which is why sleep is a nightmare. But coming back, he cannot breathe out, or in on command, he cannot love. So every one of the vagal tone exercises that I hear is all inaccessible to a subset of kids who simply I guess the word for it is apraxia is they just do not have the motor control. To do any of these. What I have ended up doing with my son is, with his permission, do a cold shower, because the only thing I can think of so what can you help us with there?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, when you get to the age that they can handle a cold shower, I love it. I think it’s one of the best things you can do a cold plunge and a cold shower is wonderful. Because what it does is it teaches you to handle stress and control your breath under that stressful circumstance. The key here is control of the breath. And so the cold shower will do that. I’m sure you notice when you do turn on that cold water, he gets very young. And you get into the sympathetic breathing. I don’t know when I do it for myself, all of us do. It’s meant to be there, right? We’re meant to respond that way. The key is over the next 30 seconds to five minutes. Depending on how long you want to do this, are you able to shift your breath from the chest back to the belly and focus on the belly breath?

That’s the key why being in the cold shower, continuing to be within the cold shower. So while the stressor continues to hit you can you bring yourself from sympathetic fight or flight into parasympathetic, rest, and digest. So think of it in a very basic way. We want to train our muscles to get stronger, we have to train them under stress. Let’s say, for example, we’re doing squats, we can do body squats, and air squats with no weight on them. Phenomenal, great. But now if we add weight onto the bar, we put a bar on their back and we put 50 6080 100 pounds on it retraining at a deeper level, we’re going to a much stronger level we’re under greater stress able to perform a better function, the cold is considered the stress and control of the breath are optimizing the function optimizing the muscles so to better training for the longer term to help increase the strength of that so the key is, can you bring the breath back to that chest.

Vaish:

So while that is hard to save when you’re doing it for another person and I think the key is also that you want to make sure that this is that you have the buy in of the person who might yeah my son will say because after the day after the culture he will say that I can feel parts of my body that I haven’t felt for this. And my guess is Something to do with vagal tone blood flow all of that right?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

That sounds about right, it sounds very much like a blood flow type of thing that’s likely secondary to the vagus nerve getting turned on cold exposure is wonderful. It’s one of the best ways to turn on the vagus nerve.

Vaish:

Yeah, what else can you do for a child that has difficulty with humming and breathing?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

In a situation like that the things that I would recommend are, and you kind of mentioned this earlier, when you’re humming, you can even hear it just hearing the frequency of that hum is going to help to calm you down. So and we know as parents that our kids take on the energy that we give to them, right. So if it’s bedtime, and we’re up and running around and the lights are on, and we’re talking and we’re loud, they’re not going to be able to fall asleep.

In the same way, when we come down, when we get our bodies into a state where we can stimulate the vagus nerve or get them to sleep, then they’ll fall asleep more easily. In the same way, if we go into that parasympathetic state around them, and even if you just like, I imagine even holding his hand or holding his back while you’re doing this, he’ll feel that vibration in a slightly different way. And that frequency will help to slow his breathing down. It’s almost like you’re being like the surrogate provider of the vagus nerve activation by simply being in the vicinity of him and calming down and allowing your vagus nerve to turn on. So if we shift our energy, and if we’re physically touching them, I imagine it would be making a big difference so I think

Vaish:

so too, because I think, as everybody would attest that when your other senses kind of dull, a little bit you do have our kids are very intuitive. And there’s a lot of perception of the environment around them. So I think, I think yeah, and I think every parent listening to this podcast would agree with that. Well, maybe thank you so much for all of this information. Maybe the last question, can you’ve already told us the answer to this, but maybe to summarize, can you give a parent or a child that say, very dysregulated, or having hyperactivity, three steps that they can take right away. And I know you’ve already said this so that we can even summarize it if that’s, we can break that down really easily.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

The number one is to get them to be breathing calmly when it requires them to be in a calm, rest and digest state. Teach them to breathe with their belly, teach them to expand that balloon within their belly, that deep diaphragmatic breath will change everything.

Vaish:

And if that is not accessible, then you sit and Breathe calmly, Breathe with them exactly.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

In a situation where it’s time to eat, humming is a phenomenal, simple tool to add with your kids, not only for your kids, it’ll actually help you a lot as well, a lot of people have vagus nerve dysfunction, and they really realize that it’s happening. So humming is a great option. And I just want to add one more, this is a really interesting one, not everybody will be able to do this, but it might work really well is that the last 1% of the information on the nerve that I’ve left out, excuse me, is actually information on the skin of the Oracle the skin of the ear, and it’s not the entire ear, it’s just that inside part, right around where the canal is. I talk a lot more about it in the book. But that area can be stimulating to the vagus nerve really effectively, it’s the auricular branch of the vagus nerve, and it sends sensory signals, meaning that if we just simply touch that area, it can be very calming, very stimulating to the vagus nerve, we can use things like a feather, we can use things that are very gentle.

We could if you wanted to, to the level of like sharp and dull, but acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine use that area I’ve seen particularly for vagus nerve activation, there are particular areas and that whole area within that small part of the Oracle the skin of that area actually outlines the entire parasympathetic nervous system within it. So in all of the organs that the vagus nerve innervates are laid out in that particular area, they kind of figured it out without having the anatomy behind it and going beyond kind of the vagus nerve information being laid out on an irregular map. So that’s something that we could use as an access tool to help to stimulate from an external source so that would be you as a parent or going to see a practitioner that does that in particular.

Vaish:

I love that thank you. And I have not heard of that. And now I can recollect whenever I’ve had acupuncture I remember that point. Thank you so much doctor and allow us to end with How can parents access you do work one on one.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

Yeah, I absolutely do. All of the work that I do with people is one on one through zoom. I’ve been doing this for years and years and if you want more information and there are a lot more tools with In the book, I outline about 25 different ways.

Vaish:

And tell us the name of the book for those that are listening, how to activate your vagus nerve.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

And really simple read, I get into a little bit of the science a little bit of what causes the breakdowns to occur and a bit of the exercise and tools that we can use things like sleeping on your side versus on your back or front. Things like what type of music to listen to, to help trigger HRV by the way, the answer is Mozart and classical music 100 Mozart Effect is real.

Vaish:

So any Indian, classical, whatever works well as a common state.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

What’s been tested so far in the research, the more of the classical piano type I got, yeah, yeah. And there’s a bunch more within there. I get into like daily, weekly and monthly practices, and what to dig into. And I’d be happy to consult if anybody does need deeper support than what they can find in the book.

Vaish:

I’ll link to your book and to your website. Can you just read out your link one so people know?

Dr. Navaz Habib:

it’s www.healthupgraded.com.

Vaish:

That’s easy. I will put the link to the book and the website. Thank you so much, Dr. Navaz.

Dr. Navaz Habib:

It’s my pleasure. Thanks so much for having me.

Vaish:

So the three steps to upgrading your child’s vagal tone right away are one, Breathe calmly through your tummy to humming before eating or chanting home and three light pressure on the inside of the ear ridge to innervate the vagus nerve. You can get more information on your child’s gut health at functionalnutritionforkids.com that help. You can also find Dr. Nivas at health upbraided.com or vagus nerve book.com. And both links are in your show notes. Thank you for listening, and I’ll see you next week.

94. Changing your child’s genes through food with Amanda Archibald

94. Changing your child’s genes through food with Amanda Archibald

Can you change your genetic expression based on what you eat? Conversely, if you are one of those people that are chronically deficient in say, Iron or Vitamin D, are your genes to blame? And what can you do about it?

How can this apply to factors that affect Autism/ADHD symptoms?

In this episode, Amanda Archibald, a pioneer in genomic nutrition, explains to us how – not only do genes affect how you can process food, but you can actually fine-tune the food you eat to optimize your genes?

Whether you need help with Omega-3 supplementation, or whether you need to USE Omega-3s to modulate some “slacker” genes, nutrigenomics is the field you have been waiting for.

You can find Amanda Archibald at www.genomickitchen.com

In the meantime, we are using nutrigenomics practically in our 5-day dosa challenge. Sign up at www.functionalnutritionforkids.com/dosa to find out how to make a dosa over 5 days and why a Dosa is a perfect breakfast for your child.

 

 

Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

Can you change your genetic expression based on what you eat? Conversely, if you are one of those people that are chronically deficient in, say, iron or vitamin D, are you struggling? And what can you do about it? Welcome to functional nutrition and learning for kids. I’m your host Vaish, my job is to make it easier for you to understand why food affects your child’s focus, energy, and regulation, and what you can do about it.

Today’s conversation with Amanda Archibald is in the area of nutrigenomics, which is the world of optimizing genetic expression through the food you eat. Now, this is a fascinating field, the very fact that you can manipulate the expression of a gene based on the food you eat itself is mind-blowing.

My guest, Amanda Archibald is widely recognized as among the foremost leaders in Translational Genomics, connecting genomic science to everyday health, and a global pioneer in genomic nutrition. She’s also an author, educator, consultant, and public health advocate. She founded the genomic kitchen in 2017, to showcase the relationship between genes food, and health, dedicated to making nutritional genomics more widely understood, Amanda teaches and mentors clinicians globally in the practice of Nutrigenetics, and nutrigenomics.

Additionally, she guides individuals with complex health challenges on a journey to wellness, using genomics as the reference blueprint. Amanda is a native of the UK and currently resides in the western high desert mountains of Colorado. Let’s dig deep. Listen on. Hi, Amanda. Welcome to functional nutrition and learning for kids. Thank you for joining us here.

Amanda:

I’m glad to be with you. And I’m even happier that you based in Portland, Oregon, because it’s one of my favorite cities ever.

Vaish:

Awesome. Yeah, I am going to maybe dwell directly into the language. So you work with nutrigenomics. But there’s also Nutrigenetics, I think I don’t know if nutritional genetics is different. But are we talking about genes influencing the nutritional status of our bodies are nutritionally intimate influencing genetic expression?

Amanda:

Are both? Yes, I work in both. And it’s interesting because I trained clinicians around the world. And your question is one that I have to make sure they completely understand too because they work. They’re United via nutrition, right? So I work with Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics. So if any of your audience has seen a, quote, genetic test, the type I work with, it will be a Nutri genetic test. So what does that mean?

Nutrigenetics looks at how changes how a gene or changes in a gene will influence how you utilize so absorbing your body uses specific information from your diet, aka nutrients. So I always think of Nutrigenetics as after the chain, how does the gene or their genotype data your phenotype you and the genes you’ve inherited?

How does that influence what you do with information from food, right, so that’s, so for example, let’s give an example? Some people may need some help with Omega three supplementation, for example, because of the food sources of Omega three, if you’re not eating seafood, for example, you’re gonna have a harder time new to Gillette, genetically, getting that omega-three fatty acid in the right form. So that’s it.

We can look at some other examples of Nutrigenetics. So nutrigenomics is the brilliant art and science of the world I work in, which is where we can use information from food. It could be something like, again, omega-three fatty acid, it could be something that we call a bioactive, which is a resident molecule of food, to target genes to get them up and get them to do their job, which is great. So I think this is before the genes.

This is prodding the gene or creating a workaround, because as I say, the gene is a slacker, in some cases, it hasn’t shown up at all. So what are you going to do? So we literally can write recipes, and we can talk to individuals like yourself, your clients, or the public at large about how to harness the power of food based on their genetic profile? It’s brilliant, don’t you think? It’s just like, Wow, a whole new set of tools? The weekend just

Vaish:

case you’re using the foods to optimize genetic expression, right? Correct.

Amanda:

Yeah, to optimize and like in some cases, you know, we all nobody has a perfect set of genes. We all have, you know, those who are really really eager to do the job and those who haven’t shown up, and those who were just like slacking. So as I like to say like they need a kick in the pants. sometimes to do their job say that the gene, so you said phenotypes of the gene are there, but it’s not x, is that the correct language? Or it’s not expressed?

Amanda:

Yeah, so, so genotype is a set. This is interesting not to kind of get folks confused because it is confusing. So your genotype is like your human genes. It’s like the genes you inherit your phenotype is basically how the world we live in including food stress diet, well, diet, right exercise, is influencing or changing our gene blueprint, if you will. So you get, let’s say, you come up with a perfect set of genes, like human genes, which were each a little different, based on the genes we inherit, but also how the environment we live in washes over us.

That kind of changes our genotype, it becomes who you are, which is, you know, it’s a human right at our evolve over our lives. So, but nutrigenomics think of that as before the chain-like Nutrigenetics, how that chain influences? You know, how you respond to exercise or sir or the food you eat or not, you know, nutrigenomics is like, it’s sort of like the art of how we dial-in information to optimize Yes, not necessarily change your optimize gene expression will be a better way. Good point.

Vaish:

Yeah, it’s definitely a fascinating field. And I’m curious about to what extent you can do this optimization. So one of the questions I have, and I’m going to get this out before, so we can go into more specifics later, is that a lot of times people will say, so, you know, like, the functional nutrition functional medicine world is very centered around a paleo style diet. A very, what I would think it’s a very European-centric diet, which isn’t necessarily what ancestral populations have had in other countries for ages. Yeah. So I’m, so a lot of times, you know, you hear language like this that? Well, my, you know, genetically, you can maybe eat grains, but I can, so is that even accurate? So, what do you think?

Amanda:

Yeah, so let’s kind of dial that back. So I grew up in Europe. And growing up in England, I grew up with so many different cultures, which was fabulous, you know, I just loved it, like to be seen England on national dishes, Indian and all the different areas. It is it was just absolutely amazing to live and work there. But to come back to your question, one of the criticisms of the human genome project is that it was very white, if you will, very European-centric. And of course, we’re, and that’s just the nature of how that project evolves.

The human genome project basically, is an international project, it wasn’t just an American or European international project, that basically gave scientists the map of how the human body is built, genetically. So it was brilliant. But if you’ve looked at a lot of the research, it did kind of like the Mediterranean diet, it did veer more towards kind of white and all Caucasian and European populations.

However, what we now see is so much more research that speaks to the phenotypes or the genetic predispositions of Southeast Asians, for example, or Africans are absolutely amazing what we’re seeing, for example, then I want to give you a very specific example of exactly what you’re talking about. So for example, the Inuit, so the Eskimo population, they, if we look genetically, at their ability to produce their own forms of Omega three, a very, very important fatty acid, as you know, they literally kind of don’t need the gene because they’re the diet is, you know, or what traditionally was full of omega-three fatty acids.

If you look and I just saw this recently, so I should see that send you this research. If you look at the same gene, so it’s fats one and fat to the chain in South East Asian populations, your gene and this isn’t a general observation, you are predisposed to be able to take plant sources of Omega three Alpha Linna clinic acid and produce EPA and DHA, whereas the Eskimos can they, In other words, you cannot give an Eskimo illness and I’m talking very general terms a plant-based diet, right, right. It can’t they don’t have the gene Where is the Southeast Asian pocket that’s a huge population, right.

Vaish:

I think it was very specific to Indians but sub-classifications right. In the Indian population, you can automatically eat a plant-based diet So, um, get through omega threes. That is so interesting. That makes so much sense. Yeah, right. So it. Yeah, yeah.

Amanda:

So to your point, there’s been a lot of generalizations in genetics that now we know, like, depending on the individuals around the world, they have different predispositions dietarily If you don’t eat, I don’t know on exercise. But on diet, we can’t make the same assumptions for everyone. And so let me give you an example of that. So my husband is Greek by birth. he was adopted at birth by American parents, his American and French is a beautiful story. But it took us a long time to figure out you have migraines for a long, long time. Migraine is such a horrible thing to live with, for any person. And getting to the bottom of it is a real journey.

What we finally discovered is that he cannot tolerate casein, so he’s not lactose intolerant. It’s casein intolerance. So the protein from cow’s milk, specifically cow’s milk in us, well, he’s Greek, his DNA is Greek on Greek islands, they don’t have cows. They have goats, so he can tolerate sheep and goat milk on products, which makes sense, right? Of course, coconut, but which is not native to the Greek cuisine at all. shouldn’t be there. They don’t grow that well. Maybe they do on an island, and I missed it. Maybe it’s in the southern islands. But that’s the point, right? That you cannot broad brushstroke things and our genes literally reflect our culture and our heritage period.

Vaish:

I wonder what that says about the, you know, the broad application, we’re talking about broad strokes of the Paleo-ish diet. So there’s like 20 diets that have spawned off the Paleo movement, which have obviously been enormously successful for, for people with, you know, Caucasians, basically European because many of them aren’t, it seems like more and more people are unable to digest grains. But, it’s so widely thought of as the template for a healthy diet. Yeah. And then you have coconuts in there, which I’m guessing don’t go and like you said, probably don’t go anywhere in Europe, so and we’re heavily relying on coconut products, even then the Paleo diet. It’s interesting how all of those things have kind of like layered into, like a mishmash of why we think it’s healthy. Yes.

Amanda:

And well, yeah. And to me, so it’s interesting working in genetics, I mean, that is my practice, that’s my work. I assume nothing about anyone person coming in none of this shit. So when I look at genetics or somebody’s blueprint, all I’m seeing, I’m seeing code and I’m seeing genes and I look for patterns. So I don’t actually know where somebody’s coming from, until I actually see you know, meet you, for example. And it’s a pattern that tells me where the disruption can be in biochemistry where there are efficiencies and inefficiencies.

There’s no such thing as paleo or keto, or any diet for any of my clients until I see what the issues are, you know, or the inefficiencies are. So you know, paleo or keto, if somebody has a disruption in their mitochondrial membranes, and they can’t transport fat efficiently across those membranes, it doesn’t matter what the diet is, we have to fix what the inefficiency is, and that is oftentimes Carnot 10, right? So or now in this world of technology, it’s amazing that we can now use continuous glucose monitors to kind of look inside and see what’s going on with someone with certain gene patterns.

Some people just don’t do well with fasting over a certain period of time they don’t the body then flips and says it almost to like Paleolithic you know, and okay, we don’t know when our next meal is coming from if you will, or hunter-gatherer and your body starts producing proteins, you know, is the goat excuse me, they access proteins for sugar so gluconeogenesis as you know, chemistry right?

Vaish:

And that bumps of blood sugar SAP so to me that’s me. I mean, I have ridiculous crashes when I try too fast so yeah, yeah. Now there are ways

Amanda:

we can play with that we know that besides we can find our specific facts that your genes to change the fat object depends on what you know what your gym blueprint looks like, but there is no such thing as a one-size fits all. I certainly understand keto and paleo keto more than paleo right. But you are right that these almost become these go-to diets quote, they work for everyone.

They do not they don’t you know, one person’s needs. And once a person’s optimal diet is another person’s like a trashy diet in some cases. So I’m right with you and genetics. It tells me and tells me exactly what to eat. It tells me how I need to work with you to get the right balance of foods type of foods form of foods to optimize and get your genes to work efficiently.

Vaish:

Do you see any overarching patterns that you would say, Okay, this is definitely a healthy diet so that if I knew nothing about you, this is maybe something I could tell you to do?

Amanda:

Yeah, and yeah, absolutely. And I think we know this, it doesn’t matter what culture we’re working with around the world, with the exception of, you know, traditional, traditional societies, if you will, something we don’t know anything about. Something, Eskimo, or that can be some very specific tribes or, you know, traditional people like an Amazon we don’t know anything about. But what we do know, whether we’re talking about Southeast Asian Australian, or wherever or North America, there’s no doubt that eating fruits and vegetables are important, you know, type of human vegetable can be more important.

The reason is, that everything starts in your gut, right? You know, you are what you absorb. But you are what you feed your microbiome, the bacteria in your gut. And so the best way to feed your gut is to give them the fiber and the information those bacteria need. And so if you kind of push that out into science, what we know, and maybe I can send you probably looking at the papers anyway, I can send you over a couple of papers where we kind of know that about 600 grams, which sounds a bit bizarre, isn’t it, but 600 grams of raw material from ice vegetable first, and fruit would be consistent with firing up your microbiome to do its job, but also provide the random amount of polyphenols.

Vaish:

Or information on your 600 grams of vegetables and fruits is Yeah.

Amanda:

Now when I say that, everyone’s like, Oh my gosh, you know, what? It’s not definitive or whatever. But listen, how food speaks to your genes is through information from plants. Okay? bioactive. However, you need the vitamins and minerals that come from your other foods as well, whether it’s seafood or, or animal products, that depends, you know, on your culture and your values, what have you. But if you’re talking about diet, what I’m talking about is you’re gonna get the most out of the information you need from plants.

So you think plants first and I’m not a vegan or vegetarian, I eat you know, from a wide variety of foods, so variety, and think 600 grams. And I’m not a reductionist thinking thinker. But because I’ve worked with so many individuals, one of the first things we have to do is make sure they understand what 600 grams look like. So it’s about 1.3 pounds a day of a variety of fruits and vegetables. That’s what you need to strive for, whether they’re cooked or raw with the best of both, that’s in your mind is where we have to get to.

Vaish:

Right. Yeah, and I’m sure a number of people are immediately thinking, Should I measure them cook? Should I measure them, bro? My guess is that your answer is probably just to get started.

Amanda:

Just get started. So it’s interesting because this is something I work with a specific gut-based protocol. It was designed in Australia and is absolutely fantastic. We’re using nutrigenomics for manipulating genes if you will. But one of the things we have to do is see God and so we started talking about okay, what’s in science? What’s the optimal amount of food, right? And then the first thing I said, Well, what does 600 grams I’d like so I’m actually creating, I’ve asked my clinicians in a group I work with to take photographs of what 600 grams looks like because we have no clue, you know, so yeah, it’s useful for people to measure it.

Now. I don’t myself own a digital scale. Not anymore, because I don’t really bake but fellow clinician stupid if anyone’s listening, and you have a scale measuring out either 1.3 pounds of what lettuce looks like is a lot of lettuce. Right? So here, it’s on there. But it’s very interesting. You know that you know, two collard leaves could be a couple of 100 grams, you know, okay, yeah, yeah. Yeah, they can. They’re big and heavy, Nico, take the stock out. But yeah, it’s just like, we have no idea what that looks like.

Vaish:

So that is a research base number so interesting. And that is the number that it takes to produce a change to actually have a meaningful conversation with your genes.

Amanda:

And well, yeah, we don’t want to look at it like that. It’s more part of a protocol we’re looking at but when you look at the research, you know, we’ve asked in nutrition science for exactly how do we know what to eat and how much so this would be I got need to pull the paper for you. This was looking more specifically at cancer, I believe or cancer, chemoprotection, but you can’t see Okay, if you read this, you won’t get cancer if you’re looking at, you know, in a laboratory setting or in research or epidemiologically.

We can look at this through research called genome-wide association studies where we’re looking at people who live to be over the age of 100, for example, what are consistent facets in their diet? For example? No, I’m not saying it’s 600 grams there. But you’re going to specify that you’re going to see a consistently higher level of plants. And then when you reduce it down to exactly how much the research I’m looking at was more specific to chemoprotection, which of course, is you know, that’s what we would strive for, for anyone. Right.

Vaish:

Which is interesting, which is a nice segue into my next question, which is that? Can you target specific areas of intervention? Are you using this field of nutrigenomics? Mike, I know from your website that you’re starting with genetic tests, correct?

Amanda:

That’s yeah, yeah. You don’t work? Niboshi unless you start with that because to me, it’s the gateway. It’s like it is you. It’s, I’m unpacking you, there’s no guesswork.

Vaish:

Right. So you start there, and then you understand what their nutritional needs are? Can you now further tailor it, let’s say, to the audience that we’re speaking to right now, can we tailor it towards attention span, maybe hyperactivity? Maybe neuroinflammation is a general term, but we’ll take that or seizure activity or something like that.

Amanda:

Yeah. And you know, genetic tests continue to evolve. So some of these areas are really specialty areas, and we don’t look at genes on tests unless they have clinical validity, right. And scientists, if you can’t use them, and I can’t advise you, we can’t look at those genes.

Vaish:

So go to the bottom line is to know that that gene has, you know, you can influence it, and it has an impact in the XYZ area.

Amanda:

Correct. So to your point, yes, I’m able to see patterns in genes that explain why somebody may be feeling the way that you’re experiencing what they’re experiencing now. I can’t. So I think it’s important to go back and see genser, there are signposts for me there are signposts to talk to you about, you know, what are your questions? What are you looking for, you know, what solutions are you after? What’s your health history? When I know that, I can look at changes and say, here’s where I feel the disruption is, and here’s where I think we need to work to find some solutions or advice for you.

So what’s interesting about working that way, is I assume nothing. And what I often found is the root cause is somebody’s challenges are far removed from what they thought they are, you know, so let’s say, you know, somebody has cancer, you traditionally might say, Okay, well, it’s because of a, b, c, d?

Well, I don’t know, because I’m not specifically working with any diagnosis because genetics tells me where to look. But what I can see is, that a disruption in how you handle folate, for example, could be the root cause of why you have a disruption in your cells. And therefore that could be something we need to adjust, you know, or adapt nutritionally, so that we don’t have DNA strand breaks, for example, or a mutation.

So it’s a very interesting way of looking at this, or let’s say, somebody says, I have a lot of brain fog, or I can’t connect the dots, I might look and say, Well, I think based on your genes, and we genetic, you’ve had some inefficiency, in userland utilizing or absorbing a utilizing B 12. Really important for methylation.

Therefore, you know, the brain fog issues may be fixed and may be associated with the gut, right, and methylation. And the methylation cycle requires multiple nutrients. So it’s so interesting that sometimes we’re like, Okay, well, this is my diagnosis, one and living with, therefore, I need to fix x. And I say, well, that’s not actually the issue, I’m seeing the issue meet me at, you know, how to utilize B, vitamin D, for example, I’m just sort of being extraneous here. But genetics takes us out of thinking has to be something and makes us think, no, I think the disruption is somewhere else. So yes.

Vaish:

And I’m, perhaps there would be a question. I mean, why can I just like a lot of parents that are doing maybe functional medicine or seeing Biomed doctor might already be doing betrayal tests, organic acid tests, and so on. And the difference that I am seeing is that it’s a snapshot of what is going on in your body right now. Whereas when you do the genetic testing, you’re seeing what your overall tendency is. And so you already know that regardless of what your test is, let’s say the B 12. The story is that your might always have to be dealing with a beat 12 possibility.

Amanda:

Yes, very, very important point what you just said that any lab testing, organic functional one Abra conventional, is a reflection of you right now. But it can be in the last 24 hours, right? What you eat can show up in your labs in serum. With some tests, it’s tissue, right? So you can see a tendency over the last three months. So, which is really, really useful. So in genetics, we work the other way around, you know, I’m not saying okay, this is you, therefore, this is what your issue takes this supplements, genetics, actually, a lot of times when I’m reading it,

I will form an impression say, I want to validate this through lab testing, and about 95% of the time I’m right, then you know, you’re working from your you’ve set up plans, it’s building you, as opposed to Okay, well, this is you today, therefore, you have an iron issue, or vitamin D, or B 12, or B six or take this supplement.

I’m not saying that’s how we practice functionally. But the functional community is fantastic, brilliant practitioners. But we’ve relied very, very heavily, of course, on our knowledge as practitioners and Dunlap testing. Genetics removes any of that to say, I start with jeans to tell the story of who you are, and answer your questions. But before we can intervene, I’m, I might want to validate through lab testing. So we’re using lab testing that way to confirm an impression before we have you take this, do this, change that, etc. So this is your tendency. Are you actually manifesting that tendency? So let’s try that.

Amanda:

Yeah, there’s no guesswork. You know you can’t, you know, she, you know, neurologically, we can’t afford to make any mistakes. I would never recommend a certain supplement to anyone with any individual I am because they come in different forms. It’s so easy to overload someone to overload a biochemical system that has a knock-on effect, right, we can cause imbalances, just by a good supplement.

Right. And so my work is where the inefficiencies can we use food, to support those inefficiencies, get your genes back up to efficiency, again, sometimes we will always use spirit, that’s how the body operates. But that also tells us what we may need to supplement how long what form if we need to get their genes to do the best job they can for you.

Vaish:

Fantastic, yes, I love that. So if you had to give a little bit of parting advice to parents that are starting on a nutritional journey, or maybe they’ve been on a nutritional journey, and it hasn’t like given to them, a lot of times people will give up because, well, one of the most common things that you hear is oh, I went gluten-free, and I didn’t see anything. Or it might be more maybe they went on a GAPS diet or like a specific therapeutic diet. And they didn’t, they didn’t see the neurological change that we’re hoping to see.

Right. So or the God change that we’re hoping to see. Actually, that’s probably more common than parents who have never been on a diet as parents have been on diets and kind of really had a hard time with it. But what, regardless, what do you have, like, any parting advice, three pieces, one piece of advice, whatever you’d like, how can people start? Restart?

Amanda:

It, you know, and it’s so interesting to me because I don’t do my work with actionetics anymore, because of exactly what you said, I don’t believe everyone should be gluten-free or dairy-free, you know, culturally doesn’t make sense. The challenge we’re dealing with right now, to put this in perspective, is we are at a collision course with our environment. And on a collision course with our environment, by the environment, I mean, our emotional environment, our relationship environments is the field of human social genomics, but also the sheer demand of our genes to deal with the toxins that are in our environment.

So toxins are emotional, they’re physical in terms of exercise. And there is the environment we’re exposed to just by walking around, or what comes in BAM with our foods. So the reason I say that is that we’re asking our genes and our bodies physiologically to deal with things that they haven’t evolved to do.

They have not, we cannot, you know, we cannot possibly ask our bodies to work at the rate of the toxic environment we’re living in. So I say that because I think one of the things that we’re missing and all of this so parents listening in, is do a, even before you get to the food, which is how your body works.

Make sure you evaluate the environment you’re living in, you know, what are your personal care products? You know, How clean is it? How local Can you buy your food, you know, is what’s possible for you? What is your environment? So the Environmental Working Group has a lot of different cool little assessment tools you can look at, one of the first things you can do is give your body a break by not reducing its exposure to what it has to deal with.

Period, you know, and I know that’s probably not the answer you were looking for, but because I’m looking at genetics or that time so many people have a disruption in their ability to detoxify information, whether it’s from meds, hormones you’re producing, or simply the toxins that are inbound with food or 10. Kinane issue, you’re saying, one of the best things you can do is evaluate, clean it up, and understand what’s coming in, around you. That takes a lot of burden off your body. And you know, that stops.

Oh, you need to know gluten is an issue in the United States, because of how we’re growing it. For those of you who’ve traveled outside, if you’ve had gluten issues in the US, you may not have them outside the US. So that is environmental here. But don’t get on the bandwagon of okay, if I go gluten-free and or casein or dairy-free, I’m healed. Most of the time and genetics. I’m not seeing people have a predisposition to gluten intolerance or celiac, it’s actually I will say it’s rare, but I still see it very often.

Vaish:

Your gluten is more than an environmental factor. As you mentioned, it’s kind of a toxic environmental factor in the US that is just glyphosate, you know, so it’s a toxin.

Amanda:

Don’t you know, if you’re asking me this, from your diet, it can give you for some people, it really is an issue and you do feel totally bad. Don’t stop there that just removed the impetus that just removed the canary in the coal mine. Right. So what do you see a lot? What do we see a lot of people’s thyroid disruption, it cannot be that every single human being in the United States has thyroid issues, what has happened, it’s a canary in a coal mine,

It means something is attacking your body or is found. And so we need to remove that. And then we need to get your biochemistry back on track. So your thyroid functions. For some people, it is gluten, but it’s not for the rest of your life. It just depends. Genetics tells us where the inefficiencies are. But to answer your question, even though I deal in nutrition and diet, I cannot tell you how important the environment is to do that first.

Vaish:

Yeah, I really liked that. Thank you. Thank you, Amanda, because I know you said you’re not a reductionist I am. So I like to bring things down to like a couple of things. And if I can see the patterns, here it is that definitely your genetics impact, your nutritional status, your maybe inflammatory status, all of your body systems, how they function together, etc. And what you may be experiencing. But if you’ve not dealt with the environmental effects yet then that is upstream of that yeah, I really liked that.

Thank you. Thank you, Amanda, because I know you said you’re not a reductionist I am. So I like to bring things down to like a couple of things. And if I can see the patterns, here it is that definitely your genetics impact, your nutritional status, your maybe inflammatory status, all of your body systems, how they function together, etc. And what you may be experiencing. But if you’ve not dealt with the environmental effects yet then that is upstream of that It is upstream and isn’t emphasized enough.

Amanda:

And we’re not given enough tools, but you know, environments or it’s or switches for your genes to you can put you can eat the perfect diet but live in a toxic environment or relationship. And all this law, it’s not all this loss, you’re pushing upstream, you’re pushing that which you have working against.

Vaish:

Yeah, working. So interestingly, because I never think about that you said, Did you say emotional social genomics or something like that?

Amanda:

Yeah, human social genomics is one of the most incredible dynamic fields I’ve ever been exposed to. And the research leaves me spellbound, but it explains so much you know, that you cannot live with trauma. So let’s take this to where we are right now and think about what’s happening in Ukraine, and not to kind of take, you know, to, to sort of end on a sad note or anything here.

What we know and through research, so human social genomics looks at the impact more of the social environment, emotional environment, on genes and half. And so we know through research, for example, and looking at taking this to Ukraine, because it’s very relevant if we can’t live in this world and not be exposed to what’s going on there.

So why is it after World War Two, and this was a Dutch famine study? So after World War Two, researchers were able to study the offspring, so of women, so it would be women, of course, because we give birth, who were exposed to famine and severe deprivation, during World War Two, which millions of people work around the world, but it just happened to be a Dutch family study. And what was interesting is the offspring, even though they were raised with great, you know, better food, obviously than during the war had a predisposition to obesity or diabetes.

Vaish:

Why is it right, and what it is what they actually found out was that it epigenetics to see the impact of the stress and trauma on the genes In utero. So children that happened in one generation.

Amanda:

In one generation that happened, we see the same trauma with our Native Americans like why are they predisposed to trauma and stress or have much higher rates of diabetes, for example, than the general population. And a part of that is history in a collision course with food after World War Two, but then that’s found in studies.

Super, super interesting. So if we take that to the modern world, why is it that children who have grown up in socioeconomically deprived environments may have higher rates of asthma or diabetes, than those who, and they’re eating the same food and live in the same neighborhoods have kids who, you know, their family unit may be intact, or what have you. And it is that the environment can change the inflammatory response. So it can turn on genes, it can turn on the inflammatory responses from genes, and it could turn down the antiviral response.

Put that, yes, that’s amazing. Put that in the context of COVID. So COVID, you know, millions of people around the world experience COVID. But if we look at the United States, and we start to tease out some of the data, the people who suffered the most would be people from low-income socio-economically deprived, or stressed communities,

Right? If you look at the data, so right, because they’re immune to it, you know, that not only Genet they don’t know enough, genetically yet. But we know, their immune function will probably have been weakened, just by the world and environment that we’re living in, right. You know, if you’re struggling to put food on the table, working three jobs, the kids are like, you know, struggling themselves, you know, when kids looking after another, you know, it’s a stressful situation.

That’s why we saw, you know, this kind of slant towards people who are trying to struggle in those environments and their ability to survive COVID or get it, you know, so now we would go over to Ukraine, and I think of World War Two, and we think of, it’s a lot of women right now, you know, they’re separated from their, their husbands don’t even know, or their partners don’t even know they’re still alive, they now have to flee a country if they’re pregnant. We don’t know yet.

The impact of that sheer trauma forces us to see the environment, the social stress environment, on those women and their offspring, we don’t know, but I suspect we will see. So this is human social genomics, that really explains why do some people you know, why don’t you get why would a kid this playing basketball, you know, out and super energetic? Why would they get asthma versus another kid in an inner-city setting? So that’s just an example. So that’s human social genomics is brilliant.

Vaish:

It is fascinating, and it’s definitely something that I want to study more of all Yeah, I’ll chat with you after the podcast. But how can parents read How can parents reach you?

Amanda:

At www.genomickitchen.com Yeah, yeah. Yes, we’re busy. We’re super busy. But you know if if you know my work is something you’re interested in.

Vaish:

They can work with you by going to your website if they want to just reach out and if I’m not able to work directly, we can train and work with a lot of clinicians who probably can so it’s amazing to work.

Vaish:

All right. Thank you so much for you know, really opening our minds to a lot of this science and information around food and nutrition because I think it’s been so one track for a long time. I’m really happy to hear this. Thanks, Amanda.

Amanda:

Thank you.

Vaish:

Thanks for listening everyone, as a reminder to everyone that those a challenge is live in one day. And you can sign up to the 60s or figure out how to make a dosa step by step at functionalnutritionforkids.com/dosa. Talk about getting nutrigenomics in action. Looking forward. See you in a week on episode 95.

93. Getting started with CBD – with Dr. Julie Buckley

93. Getting started with CBD – with Dr. Julie Buckley

If your child struggles with anxiety, aggression, seizure, or even sleep issues, how many times have someone advised you – “Have you tried CBD”? Every time I hear this, I wonder how CBD can be the answer to EVERY problem?

It turns out, it is quite possible.

Dr. Julie Buckley makes her second appearance on Episode 93 of Functional Nutrition and Learning for Kids in this fantastic deep dive into CBD and how to get started for your child!

I learned 3 important things:

  1. Pure CBD (without terpenes, without THC) is not a sedative or psychoactive
    It is all about the dose
  2. Water-soluble CBD is the way to go.
  3. You can reach Dr. Buckley at  www.HealthyUstore.com

If you loved this episode, please share your rating at www.ratethispodcast.com/vaish

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. It is meant for educational purposes only. Please consult your doctor before making supplement changes for your child.

 

 

Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

If your child struggles with anxiety, aggression, seizures, or even sleep issues, can you count how many times somebody has told you? Have you tried CBD? Every time I hear this have you tried CBD? I wonder how CBD can be the answer to every problem. Now it turns out it’s quite possible. Dr. Julie Buckley makes a second appearance on episode 93 of functional nutrition and learning for kids in this fantastic deep dive into CBD, and how to get started for your child. I’m your host wife. I’m a functional Nutrition Consultant for kids and a science and math teacher. I’m also a mom to an autistic teen poet with Down syndrome. Welcome to Episode 93.

Now, Dr. Barkley is the author of the book healing autistic children and your comprehensive guide to best breast cancer. She’s also an international speaker on Autism and Related Disorders. Judy is founded and is President of the healthy, you now Foundation, a nonprofit, which is dedicated to creating healthy living, treatment, and residential facilities for autistic individuals and their families. In addition, she is actively involved in research writing books, and raising two children with the help of a wonderfully supportive family. Dr. Buckley is spoken on this podcast about puberty and anxiety before that is episode 56. And you can find episode 56 at this link, functional nutrition for kids.com/ 2021 slash 56. Here’s a small disclaimer, there is a lot of detailed information in this podcast.

This is not meant to be medical advice is never on this podcast. It’s meant for educational purposes only. So please do consult your doctor before making supplement changes for your child. Hi again, Dr. Julie, thanks for joining us for the second time, this time for a more targeted conversation. But I’m really happy and grateful that you came again on this podcast.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Oh, it’s my pleasure. Thanks so much for having me. Yeah,

Vaish:

Thank you. And last time, I think at the very end of our discussion we had talked about discussing CBD, which is a topic that I haven’t actually ever brought on this podcast before, and excited to cover it with you but the listeners and you can think of this as a CBD 101. I’m going to kind of start off with a general question. We’ll get into what it is maybe in this question or later. But nowadays, that’s the answer to everything right? Like of course with seizures and maybe neuroinflammatory conditions. But almost anything that an autistic child is struggling with is suffering from the first question that comes from other parents or their doctors is Have you tried CBD? What is it about CBD? Does that seem to make it an answer to everything? Or is that just a myth?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

No, it’s not a myth at all. It’s interesting. There are I think the answer comes from the fact that there are endocannabinoid receptors, on cells all over our body, all over our body. And they have many, many, many different purposes. I mean, we think of them primarily as things that are immunologically helpful and that are neurologically helpful. But CBD there are receptors all over your body all over your cells that are that can be used by CBD. And what is fascinating about CBD as a molecule is that it has the ability to bind to cells or into receptors, and to modify the receptor sites for other things. Oh, wow. So then CBD has the potential to influence not just CBD receptors alone, but also other receptors on your body that have other jobs. So it is sort of like a snake oil that actually works. It’s how we say that about hyperbaric because hyperbaric oxygen, and it’s like, it’s the snake oil that actually works because it works for everything. And CBD is a lot like that. It really does have tremendous potential to do an awful lot of different things.

Vaish:

So it may not be influencing that particular I bought the word for it modality directly, but it’s changing perhaps the receptor. So indirectly, maybe a second or third mode of action. It’s implementing Is that correct?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

That’s right. That’s right. Okay. So it has a far-reaching effect that is not directly just because of being CBD.

Vaish:

So this question of Have you tried CBD isn’t just people like throwing out a question it that actually has value.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

It does have value and it’s just you know, it’s funny I, I always give my son credit for the fact that I’m willing to talk about CBD that we use CBD in our office because was many years ago when the question of medical marijuana, which is a completely different thing, and we will I’m sure talk about that came up for a vote in the state of Florida. I voted no. And I was like, I don’t want anything to do with that I don’t, I just don’t want to be that person. I don’t want these. I was so misinformed. And my son looked at me and said, You are wrong, and you need to do your research. And I was so taken aback by that. And he had reached an age where I thought I owed him the respect of actually listening to him that I actually stayed home from Disney one day, they all went to Disney, and I stayed home on my computer. And when he got back that night to the hotel, I looked at him and I said, I stand corrected on CBD. I stand firm on my stance on THC, but I stand corrected. And that was the point at which we started using it in the office. And it turned out to be one of the most incredible tools I’ve ever had in my practice.

Vaish:

That’s amazing. And we’ll definitely come to both the question of medical marijuana and THC in this conversation both, which are very interesting and confusing to me at least. So are there a few? I know, you said that it could possibly work for everything. But are there a few specific conditions that come to mind where you’d be like, You need to try CBD first before you go anywhere else?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Yes, I think so. But it is something that I use early on in almost everybody with this on the autism spectrum. Right. So if we go back to the conversation, the first conversation that we had when we talked about what’s wrong a little bit with autism, it’s not just it’s not medical, it’s not a mental health issue. This is a physical illness that has an awful lot of things that are wrong. Well, one of the things that we know is is is a problem in most kids with autism is that their immune system is no longer in balance. Right. So so when I say in balance, you know, I visualized the immune system as being sort of like that upside-down Bosu ball and your job is to keep that Bosu ball up and not to let it tip to one side or to another side or to another side. And what happens in our kids is that their immune systems very often are tipped and the primary place we see that tipping is in the world of autoimmunity and allergy and that sort of thing. And CBD is amazingly immuno-corrective.

I like immune balancing, it restores that Bosu ball into it’s its sort of upright and ready-to-go kind of position. And so the other thing that CVD does primarily one of its big impacts is that it’s neurologically so incredibly helpful. And the way it’s incredibly helpful is that it is incredibly anxiety relieving. It’s got a real influence on glutamate and helps to get glutamate under control. It’s got a real help with just anxiety reduction. And so one of the things that I reached for is I reached word early with my kids with autism because there’s so much trouble with their, with their immune systems. And especially we see this with kids who have not just autism but also have pans and pandas. And so you know, it’s interesting, one of the things that really convinced me you watch kids do better and be better and feel happier and all the rest of it and be able to function so much better when we started introducing some CBD. But what happened, which was fascinating to me was that when I had when COVID hit, and all of our kids got sent home from school and the world was just upside down. And there was so much anxiety. I increased CBD, you know, increase the dose a great deal for many, many, many of the children that I was working with. And what was fascinating was six months later when it was time to draw blood again. Everybody’s Panthers titers had profoundly decreased. Oh, wow. Yeah. And so, oh, this immune corrective thing. I’m actually measuring it. That’s kind of cool.

Vaish:

And corrective means that regardless of which side whether you’re under or overactive, it’s bringing it into balance, Correct.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

That’s why I like to use that word, immune corrective or immune balancing because it’s not always that it’s not just that it’s tipped one way and I need to tip it back to normal. It’s bringing the whole system back into balance. Correct?

Vaish:

Okay, awesome. I have several things that come to mind. I just want to quickly share that. I didn’t know about the glutamate that it balances glutamate for. We only started using CBD for sleep for my son. And he was just having this situation where he was unable you could tell that he was really, really tired. He wanted to sleep, but his eyes were in charge and his brain couldn’t turn up. Then with just a little bit of dietary kind of detective work. And I was thinking I mean, I’m a nutritionist. I thought I was doing great. It turns out we were doing a lot of fermented foods and a lot of home called gluten-free, dairy-free Asian foods that naturally had free glutamate and I realized it was just a light bulb moment I’m flooding a system with both histamine and glutamate. We went on a low glutamate diet and added GABA and it helped. But I do realize that when we added CBD the effect was significant. I didn’t make that connection. I thought it was a separate process. But I realized now maybe it was the glutamate who knows? So well.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Yeah, and the other thing that’s also a true statement is that CBD has an action on that GABA receptor. I see. So if we potentiate things like GABA and that kind of stuff, so yeah,

Vaish:

Absolutely. Yeah. And I had tried CBD before for sleep for him, but at a much lower dosage than I think it was like. I mean, I’m sure the dosage is different for different people, but I was doing 12 milligrams or so at just told CBD at night, when I moved to more than 25 milligrams, the effect was immediate, there was no effect or good nor bad earlier, and then later there was an effect, then can you talk to us about the dosage of CBD? Seems like there’s a threshold where things start working, but I may be wrong.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

So it’s different for everybody. And the truer statement is that it is very, very difficult to overdose on CBD alone. Oh, right. So it is very, very difficult to overdose it, and alone being the keyword.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Yes, alone being the keyword. So here are things that do happen that are negative when the CBD is an oil base. Sometimes children do not tolerate those oils well. And that will lead to bellyache and maybe some quote side effects. It’s a negative but it has nothing to do with the CBD. Then if there is a lot if there’s THC, in the product, that can be problematic. THC is something that is psychoactive whereas CBD is not THC is something that makes us feel a little bit like we’re losing control. That is a horrifying experience for most children who have autism who already have trouble with motor planning and controlling their motor output. I see. And so it’s very interesting. The people that I work with and the families that I work with have a tendency to be very anxious moms and dads and kids.

They have a tendency to be a little bit on the OCD side and a little bit of a controlling freak kind of thing. You know, I’ll own that you know I do. And the THC because you feel like you’re losing control. Most people that I talked to didn’t like the way they felt when they were using THC. CBD is not psychoactive and doesn’t have that same experience for folks. So it is when it’s CBD alone, we’re very, very, you know, it’s usually quite fine. Now there are a bunch of what we call terpenes. Those are other cannabidiol besides just CBD. So this would be your CBN CBG CDA. So there’s just the whole alphabet filling up and they’re all naturally occurring. They’re all naturally occurring. Yes. And some children do very well with those terpenes and get an added benefit from those without THC. So there’s CBD and isolation first there is CBD with its terpenes second, and then there’s full spectrum CBD that includes all the terpenes plus THC.

Okay, so if you think about it that way, I think it’s a lot easier to understand what we’re dealing with here. So when there are some people who don’t do well with terpenes and if we isolate them out and give them just the CBD, we find that it actually works very, very well. There are people who do better with their terpenes added. Then with the CBD in isolation, I generally don’t use THC, with the exception of patients who have cancer or if I am trying to control refractory seizures, because there is some science on the added benefit of some THC potentially eating the CBD in those situations.

So I’m a little more comfortable with that situation using some THC. But I tend to keep in, in, in CBD kind of the quantities I tend to, I tend to use only a full spectrum CBD. So,  So I think that that’s a very important thing to understand and to be able to differentiate. Now if I may. That leads me to the question of what is CBD versus what is medical marijuana? I just had a patient earlier today who I broached the idea of CBD and you could see Mom bristling and you don’t do drugs or not, you know, and I said before you even get started, let me tell you about this.

Right. So I think it’s very important to understand this. What’s the difference? And in what is you know, why do we call one thing marijuana? Why do we call it medical marijuana? Why do I need a card for that versus what is CBD right? So I think I always go back to what did nature intend and what God intends, right. And so, there are three species of cannabis plants, one is India one is Sativa.

The other one is something I can’t remember the species. But there’s, there’s three of them. And when they grow the way nature intended outside, in just the air, doing their thing, these plants grow to be huge, and they’re very Leafy. And they’re very stunning. And there they’re just there, they’re huge plants and their green leafy plant matter, which we probably would have when we were outside naked running around 24/7 the way God intended, we would have been eating some of this as well. If you bring those plants inside, you grow them it’s certain to grow light frequencies and certain fertilizers and this many hours of the day and this many hours of that this much amount of that.

What you do is grow a much smaller plant with many fewer leaves but a lot more flowers and buds. The THC is in the flowers and buds. So that is what makes something marijuana. When it grows outside in nature where it just becomes leaves and leaves and leaves and leaves and leaves. It is CBD it is hemp. And the difference is this one is you know, CBD comes from hemp and medical marijuana is where you get so much more THC. What is ridiculous is to grow a plant from marijuana and then try to extract CBD from it. That’s a waste of time and money. So what’s very interesting is that since 2018, plants that have grown as hemp has been 100% legal. All across the country. You don’t need a card, you don’t need anybody’s permission. You don’t need anything special. If it’s a hemp-derived CBD, it’s 100% legal when you need a card, or there are questions about licensing and it varies from state to state is when we’re talking about medical marijuana, where the plant was grown in a hothouse basically, for and bred for its THC content.

Vaish:

So basically the hemp plant and the hemp, it is a plant that is giving us CBD oil. So the same plant that we’re getting our hemp seeds from and so on. And however when that is grown in a more artificial or, I don’t know if that’s necessarily artificial, but an environment for marijuana the nature of the plant changes the growth of the this is typical for many plants, but this is how they’re specifically cultivated for marijuana.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Exactly. And so that’s the difference. And that’s an I think that’s an important thing to understand. So scientifically this hemp plant is going to give us CBD and it’s going to give us what we want, there’s a trivial amount of THC in those plants.

Vaish:

Now and that is part of the whole plant CBD.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Now, if we then take it to the next level, then I was told by somebody who was deep into this business many many years ago, that the future of this industry is in water-soluble products. So they have it’s it is it does end up being processed a little bit very, very safely because it’s generally speaking these are people who are all about nature and all about doing things as naturally as possible. So generally speaking, you’re going to find things as clean as possible. But you can nanoparticle eyes, that droplet of oil until it becomes so small that it is in fact water-soluble. And when you do that, you’re also able to fractionate out CBD alone. CBN alone CVG alone THC alone and that allows you the tremendous leeway to make products that has a very specific activity. And this is what’s happening in the CBD world now what is what they are doing is beginning to research.

Okay, well, what does this specific CBA what does it seem to specifically be helpful with? Is there something and then what happens when it’s in combination with and so this is where we come to where you can get CBD in isolation where there’s nothing else in your product, or you can get a broad spectrum that is THC free? Or the full spectrum that it has all of these terpenes plus the THC in it. So I understand

Vaish:

No, I think so that’s why we’re seeing CBD for sleep and CBD for energy and all that sort of stuff. Right?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Right.

Vaish:

So I was wondering about that because we have one of those sleep-specific formulations. So perhaps they found a terpene. That is that is more. They have CBD plus that particular terpene. That’s helpful in sleep.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

And it is possible. I don’t know if this is the effect, but it is possible if it is still an oil base, and it is still a whole plant product. And the THC that is in it. There’s a difference between the Sativa brand, the Sativa species is generally meant to be something that is less sedating. So if you know and I don’t know that as I say, I don’t know this to be the be effect but my suspicion is that if something is designed specifically for sleep and it is still oil-based, it is using the indica species, which is much more likely to make you sleepy and be sedated. The Sativa is less likely to do that in terms of its THC, and CBD and isolation are never sedating. Never.

Vaish:

I see. Okay, that makes sense. I’ll give you.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

The munchies. It won’t make you sleepy. It doesn’t make you high. It’s not psychoactive.

Vaish:

Dr. Julie, the one biggest question that I’ve seen parents struggle with, and I struggled with it too, when I when I’m meeting clients is where to start? Because like you said, I often asked this question myself have you tried CBD? And then people will ask How should I try it? I don’t have an answer to them. Because with me and my son, we figured out a rhythm, we’re kind of you to have an intuition on where to start with your child and most parents will develop that but as a practitioner, so I’m then I ended up looking for practitioners who are fluent in the CBD language. And even so not many people, so far have been, you know, willing to give specific doses, how can parents start? So now let’s say they have a child who’s really having aggressive outbursts, maybe there are pans or pandas going on? How can they start?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

So it’s the same rule we use for everything, start low, and then go slow, be willing to increase, right? So generally speaking, you know, I think that even when people use an oil base, so the thing that’s cool about a water-soluble product, is that one milligram of water-soluble may be more like two to five milligrams of something that is oil-based. So you get a lot better bang for your buck with a water-soluble product. But even if it’s an oil-based product, generally speaking, you know, people who are so cautious, and they don’t know what to dose. And it’s very confusing because you’re doing based on your hand or you dosing based on your CBD because these guys label their products at stream every way under the sun, right? So you know, you’ll buy a bottle, it’ll say it’s got 1000 milligrams, well, there are 1000 milligrams and you’re 30 milliliters, then you have math to do, is there 1000 milligrams of CBD or is there 1000 milligrams of hemp extract?

So what you have to drill down to, and what you have to be able to understand as a parent, is how many milligrams of CBD are there in each milliliter or each capsule or each gel cap? That’s it and that way, you can then begin to compare apples to apples. So it really doesn’t matter how many milligrams are in the bottle, it matters how many milligrams are there per milliliter or per capsule. And that way you start to go, oh, that that’s not actually cheaper. It’s just way less CBD available to me. And so I think, you know, even in tiny, tiny people, you know, the foreign five-year-old kiddos, I’m not even remotely afraid to start with 10 milligrams a couple of times a day, sometimes three times a day. Not I wouldn’t even blink. And then if nothing happens, also, it’s not a negative, if nothing happens, give more, give more, the effect of CBD is very, very quick. You can almost use it for rescue. When there’s when, when there’s a temper.

Vaish:

Within a few minutes, then yeah, especially if it’s a water-soluble product. And if you’re like directly instead of a capsule, you’re doing it orally, you should maybe see it soon.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Yeah, very, very quick. So, you know, it’s very helpful in the short term, and it’s very helpful very quickly. But, you know, I said to this family that I had in here this morning, my goal is always to have there be no anxiety, I don’t want to be responding, I don’t want to be reactive. In terms of anxiety, I want to be proactive, I want there to be joy, I want there to be it’s easy to go places and do things I want there to be I can try. And it doesn’t, it’s not anxiety-provoking, if I try something new, that’s the goal here, you know, so that it’s and that should be achievable. Even if somebody’s nonverbal, you should be able to, Hey, come on, let’s try this, here’s what I’m gonna get, here’s what we’re gonna do.

This is how it’s gonna work. Okay, let’s go for it. So. So, you know, and I am much more aggressive, I use only water-soluble products in my office, we private labeled something several years ago working with a company very specifically. And I was I I’m deeply appreciative for them coming along, for the ride of consistency and dose, and always having certificates of the assay. And being very, very committed to the pure products. And we have a product that is water-soluble, and generally in ours is in a capsule, we do have powder forms as well, because of course, there’s a cost to putting something in a capsule. So if a child is still using, opening all the capsules, it’s easier if we use a powder.

I will generally speak, start almost everyone off on 20 milligrams twice a day of a water-soluble product. And I don’t even blink about that. It because I’ve got so much experience now that when I’m dealing with somebody that I know has anxiety that I you know, whether they respond with stimming, they respond with NCDs they respond with, you know, just repetitive behavior or avoidance behavior that any part of that fight-flight or freeze anxiety response. If I see that at all, it’s gonna take at least 20 milligrams twice a day, to be able to get them there. So,

Vaish:

You know, sometimes then if you don’t get it, you keep increasing until I see. Okay, yeah!

Dr. Julie Buckley:

It was very interesting because my daughter, my poor daughter has no privacy. And she just doesn’t anxiety is the biggest thing that she still deals with. I mean, she’s 23 years old now. She’s, she speaks very, very well. We just got invited to go back to Carnegie Hall with our church choir again. Oh, nice. Yeah, in November. So we’re going again, she will ascend twice in Carnegie Hall. But we know she can go and do those things. But she still we’ve managed tremendous amounts of anxiety, in order for her to be able to do that stuff. And it was very, very interesting when COVID happened. And all of a sudden, we were in lockdown. And we were at home and the TV was on in my house and that kind of stuff. Her anxiety just went through the roof, even though her life was not appreciably very different. You know, we kept doing most of the same things that we were doing. She was still more anxious. And it was interesting because I had her on.

I think at the time, I had her on about 40 milligrams twice a day. And I was like, I’m not going to get I’m not going to survive this, either one of us is going to blow up. So I increased her to 60 milligrams twice a day. And that was obviously better. It was better. And then what I realized was that I was still getting pushed back on things and there were still times that she would sort of rant at me or she would persevere ate at me a little bit. And I thought we were still dealing with anxiety. So we talked about it, and I increased her again, from 60 to 80 milligrams.

The other thing I was hoping for was a little bit better seizure control because we still have a breakthrough seizure once in a blue moon. And deaths are horrifying experiences and I don’t like The so we went up to 80 milligrams twice a day. And she is a delight to be with at this point, I finally have her anxiety well enough controlled. She’s just plain fun. She’s funny, and she’s fun. And when we go to do errands, she doesn’t want me to come inside the store. I have her chauffeur, she’s going inside and taking care of it. She’s doing the grocery shopping by herself. She’s doing the returns. And she can go ask people and get things and take care of it now like she never could because I’ve got her anxiety control. So I was surprised at how much it took to help her have her anxiety controlled.

Vaish:

And this is just CBD. This is like what would you call a whole spectrum CBD.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

So actually, I have her on just the isolate. The next thing that I’m tempted to try is putting her on broad-spectrum and see whether or not I like that as much and see whether or not I need less dose or fewer milligrams if I add the terpenes in. So I’ve done that for her yet. You get a lot of magical behavior when you’re worried about seizures.

Vaish:

That is amazing. So you’ve gone to a dose that I probably would not have even thought of by myself. So So you said 80 milligrams or so and so there’s a lot of leeway to how much you could increase. Because my next question was going to be at what point would you think that CBD alone isn’t doing it, maybe I need to bring in THC.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

I’m still not going to be a big fan of THC. I don’t do that for kids with anxiety with maybe one or two exceptions. So I will try using a little and it’s still it’s only the THC that’s in a CBD product. So I do have a full spectrum product. And I do have one or two children who were very, very, very aggressive. And it was interesting, just that smidgen of THC, not natural naturally enough to get you high. But just it seems to potentiate the CBD just enough to make a difference.

Vaish:

So I have and this was part of what was naturally coming with the plant. It wasn’t added to the picture.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Okay, all right. Yeah, I’m still working within the realm of just CBD. I don’t want to I don’t want to have to do the whole medical marijuana cards and all of the extra stuff that goes with that.

Vaish:

I’ve just that is so interesting. I didn’t even know this was an option. Because when I was I was the way I was thinking about this as a model was that, okay, you push CBD to maybe 30 or 40 milligrams, and then you start adding like 5% THC, 10%, THC, THC and so on. I was thinking like, I thought there was like a, like, it’s a little bit naive now to think about it. But I thought there was a percent THC to CBD ratio for every for, you know, for specific ailments.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Well, I will tell you that many times, the manufacturers will tell you those kinds of things. And they have opinions, they have their opinions. And they are not always backed up by data. So, mine is no more than an opinion as well. But because this is we’re trying to get data I’m deeply, deeply intrigued. There’s an I have a like I said, a friend who has been deeply involved in this industry in a while for a while now who has a son with autism. And he and his wife are very, very interested in trying to actually get real, measurable data and try to see if we can suss out the differences in the British sense in order to figure it out to try to sort through what works best because at this point, I have a lot of clinical experience. And that is the data that I use, you know, in my experience, it’s worked this way and my experiences work that way. But you know, I have two young women who have intractable seizures.

One of them is taking 1200 milligrams of CBD twice a day, because nothing else has controlled her seizures as well. Now she’s on other seizure meds and she’s on a lot of other things as well. But just to give you like, and there’s no problem she’s not sedated, it’s not. She’s, it’s fine. And we have another young woman who’s also on very, very high doses like that, because the seizures are just out of control.

Vaish:

Anybody who’s thinking is or thinks that you were just dragging them that’s not the case because they’re fully functional and aware you’re they’re not. They’re not serrated, yeah.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

No, you can’t sedate somebody with CBD. It’s just not gonna happen.

Vaish:

Is there for somebody maybe let’s say there’s somebody that hypothetically needs only 20 milligrams of CBD for them if you overdid it. And let’s say we gave them 40 milligrams. But what might happen if you wait too much? That’s it, but you aren’t necessarily so the negative reactions are just THC, not not, when you’re doing a loan with CBD, there’s nothing.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

In my experience, you just really don’t see negatives with CBD. Unless it’s like I said, it’s an oil-related to the oil. It’s related to some other additives because a lot of people are starting to put other things in, hey, this is good. Let’s add this, let’s add then. Or if it’s this is a child who doesn’t do well with terpenes and would do Bettle better with what we call the ISO, just add alone.

Vaish:

So and that’s a very controlled way of doing it too. So just go with the CBD as much as you can and then maybe add the terpenes. And then if that doesn’t work out, bring the THC right. So that’s a nice controlled experiment.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Yeah, I like it that way. It’s been very, very good because it’s helped me there are a few people who were using one of the oil-based full spectrum CBDs. And when we tried CBD, my isolette that was water-soluble, they did not do as well. And then I was like, Huh, okay, but if I give them broad-spectrum, not the full spectrum, they do great.

Vaish:

What that’s different, too. Okay, broad-spectrum and full spectrum. Right.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

So broad-spectrum is all your terpenes full spectrum is where we’ve got the CBD and the THC added. Sorry. Got it.Yeah.

Vaish:

Interesting. So thanks, Dr. Buckley. There’s so much I think I really got my CBD story. Sorted. In my mind, that’s really cool. Is there? Is there a, is there something you’d like to leave parents with who want to get started on CBD or who have experienced failure in the past?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

I think it is important to go back and understand that if it didn’t seem to work well, in the past, look at a dose and look at what products you were using and be willing to look at something and make sure that we’re getting the best bang for our buck. Often the lowest price is not even close to the cheapest CBD per per per milliliter. That’s the number one thing. And the second thing I would say is that I have become a very big fan of using the water-soluble product. I think it is just so much more cost-effective. And it’s so much easier, it doesn’t taste the way the oil-based products do. So that’s what we carry in our office. That’s what we carry in our store. And, and I am really proud of that product and how well people do with it.

Vaish:

So how can people access your store?

Dr. Julie Buckley:

that’s  www.HealthyUstore.com

Vaish:

Okay, that’s  www.HealthyUstore.com

Dr. Julie Buckley:

Okay, yep, there’s CBD on there.

Vaish:

I’ll put that in the show notes. Beautiful. Okay, thank you, doctors. Thanks for your time. And maybe now I know you mentioned h bar in the beginning. And now if that story is as interesting as this, I want to come back to that another time.

Dr. Julie Buckley:

It’s a great story too. I love that story.

Vaish:

Thanks for your time. Bye. Bye-bye. This episode can rightly be called CBD 101. Do remember to check in with a functional doctor or your PCP. If you have any questions about CBD. Now it’s important, but quite hard in my experience to find somebody knowledgeable in CBD and its therapeutic effects. I would love it if you could reach back to me and let me know if you do find such a practitioner. Other than Dr. Buckley Of course, so I can update my database. You can reach me at Weisz at functional nutrition for kids.com. As you leave me I request you to pause and leave a review for this podcast. You can do so now there’s a nice link for it so and that link is www.ratethispodcast.com/white Bye. Thank you for listening and see you next week.

92 Picky Eating and Down Syndrome – The Fundamentals with Dr. Kay Toomey

92 Picky Eating and Down Syndrome – The Fundamentals with Dr. Kay Toomey

Today’s episode is one of a kind – and expertly leads us into incredible detail into the physical and physiological principles behind picky eating and other feeding disorders, especially in children and adults with Down syndrome.

If that sounds complex, I assure you that while it is complex, it is not complicated. Dr. Kay Toomey, in this episode talks to us about postural stability and breathing and how they relate to feeding Delays, or disorders. 

I love it when an expert takes us back to the basics. We are often so busy looking for hacks to a particular issue that we lose track of the fundamentals. This episode is just that – a journey back to the very basics, so we can pick up what we missed and address the root cause of picky eating.

You can find Dr. Toomey at www.sosapproachtofeeding.com and you can find her freebie made just for you – a collection of Low Oral Motor Demand Foods at www.functionalnutritionforkids.com/feedingsos

Clicking on the above link will also give you an ACTION handout of this podcast.

Functional Nutrition and Learning for Kids | Listen Notes

 


Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

On. Today’s episode is one of her clients and expertly says in incredible detail about the physical and physiological principles behind picky eating, and other disorders, especially in children and adults with Down syndrome. Now, that sounds complex, I assure you that while it is complex, it’s not complicated. Dr. Kay to me in this episode talks to us about postural stability and breathing, and how they are so important when dealing with feeding delays or disorders. And she has done a phenomenal job of breaking it down. They love it. When an expert takes us back to the basics.

We’re often so busy looking for hats for a particular issue. What can we do right now for picky eating? What supplement can I have? What food can I change? Right? What therapist can I see and so on, that we lose track of the fundamentals? This episode is just that it is a beautiful journey back to the very basics so we can pick up what we missed. And address the root cause of picky eating and any other feeding disorder you may have. And this is specific to children and adults with Down syndrome. But I think you will find that anybody can benefit from the detailed fundamentals that Dr. Toomey talks about. You are listening to functional nutrition and learning for kids. I’m your host Weisz. And if you’re looking for a new approach to learning and nutrition for your autistic child or for your child with Down syndrome, you are in the right place. Listen on. Hi, Dr. Tomi Welcome to functional nutrition and learning for kids. And I’m so grateful and glad that you joined us today.

Today, our focus is on feeding issues and feeding disorders in children with Down syndrome, which I always think is a topic that’s often not addressed enough. So let me jump right in. What are some factors that you consider specifically when working with feeding issues or picky eating in children with Down syndrome?

Dr. Toomey:

So one of the things that make children with Down syndrome unique, of course, is some of the factors and features related to their medical genetic diagnosis. And, and the two major issues that we always need to be thinking about with a child with Down syndrome is the low muscle tone. Hypotonia, of course, is one of the defining features and challenges when we live with someone who has Down syndrome, of course. And then the second is that many of the children have cardiac issues. And that also can create some additional stressors, especially for very young infants with Down syndrome.

Children because of their low muscle tone with Down syndrome, oftentimes, you’re going to struggle with breastfeeding and bottle feeding. And if the baby also has cardiac issues, that is going to create kind of a double whammy for that child, because we know that one of the challenges from a cardiac standpoint is fatigue. And one of the issues, when you have a low tone, in doing any kind of motor task, is fatigue. And so the child who has low muscle tone and a cardiac issue are going to have potentially a double fatigue issue that they’re trying to deal with and trying to work with. So I think it’s probably best for us to focus on the low muscle tone is that’s going to be the majority of the population of children who have Down syndrome. And there are two major components of feeding that that tone is going to impact.

Many times people will think about it purely from a self-feeding standpoint and being able to get the food up to the mouth. But actually, it begins earlier than that with what we refer to as postural stability. So in talking about the body’s list of priorities, the body’s number one priority is not eating. The body’s number one priority is breathing. So if you think about the last time you had a really bad head cold, and you couldn’t really breathe and eat, you take a few bites of something, and then you can’t really breathe, your nose is stuffed or something. And so what do you do you kind of relax.

Then you take a few more bites, and then you have to stop and breathe some more. And about the third time, you do that you’re like, Yeah, and I don’t want to do this anymore. And you’re done. So we know breathing comes first. If you can’t breathe well, you are not going to eat well. And that’s actually why cardiac is a big having a cardiac issue is a big problem for children and causes feeding difficulties. Because while we don’t think about cardiac problems as breathing per se, what the heart does, of course, is the heart oxygenate the body. And, and so indirectly having a cardiac issue is going to impact the oxygenation of the body, it’s going to cause the child to not have good oxygenation, they’re going to have to breathe harder, they’re going to have to breathe more rapidly, because of that cardiac issue, and that’s what causes them to fatigue very rapidly as well. And so, so when you have the cardiac issue, you’re already going to be struggling with priority number one, which is breathing, staying well, oxygen oxygenated.

So for example, I live in Denver, Colorado, and so we’re a mile high. And so we have an issue with oxygen anyway, because of our altitude. But one of the things that’s very interesting here is we’ll have a child was born up in the mountains, so much higher, you know, in the mountains, and the child may come down to Denver because they were born premature or they’re having respiratory issues. And down here in Denver, we can get them transitioned off their oxygen, we send them back home. And to the mountains, where they’re several 1000s feet higher than we are in Denver, even though we’re a mile high, the mountains are much higher. And what we find is the child starts having feeding difficulties, they have difficulties with weight gain, the easiest intervention we can do with that child and with children who have cardiac issues is we actually can look at giving them blow-by oxygen during a meal.

The child actually will start eating better, and they’ll start growing better. Because by having pure oxygen in their immediate surroundings as they’re trying to eat, you enrich the environment or the oxygen in their immediate environment. And they don’t have to work so hard to breathe, and they don’t have to have their cardiac system work so hard to stay well option, oxygenated. And so you know, what we find is that when you struggle with your breathing, you increase your respiratory rate, when you increase your respiratory rate, you burn more calories because you’re burning more calories, you’re not going to gain weight very well because we’ve reached your respiratory rate, you’re going to fatigue more rapidly. So in the body’s list of priorities, breathing is number one, and not falling on your head is number two. I call it not falling on your head, because it’s really about the body protecting the brain, ultimately. So you don’t want to fall on your head.

What do you have to do? And what do you have to have in order to not fall on your head during a meal, but have good postural stability? And so postural stability is really the second priority breathing is the number one factor of stability is number two, as the priorities go. And of course, the low muscle tone for a child with Down syndrome is definitely going to impact that postural stability. So the poor child with Down syndrome, whereas both low tone and a cardiac issues is going to have problems with Priority One and priority two. But that postural stability is the one that we’re going to see most commonly impact the children who have Down syndrome. So the low tone, if, as you know, the low tone happens in the arms, legs, head, neck, and trunk is what we think about when we think about postural stability, that ability to sit in an upright stable position.

Now, after children sit up straight, most children on average are going to learn to sit at about seven months of age, depending on a child with Down syndrome level of low muscle tone. They may not be learning to sit until eight months, nine months, or 10 months. So one of the things we need to do is we need to always be thinking about a child with Down syndrome. How do we support their postural stability, from early infancy all the way into being an older child and even an adult with Down syndrome? We always have to think about postural stability. So when babies first start on baby food, we are going to put them in a slightly reclined back position. A swing seat is a good seat to think about feeding a baby with Down syndrome.

A bouncy seat is another option. And then there certainly are Adjustable infant feeding chairs where you can lean that baby back in a slightly leaned back position. And that actually would be my preference over a highchair. high chairs actually are not really constructed very well, to be supportive of children who have special needs. So an infant feeding chair, a swing seat, and a bouncy seat, would be a better option for families to begin feeding their child who has Down syndrome, you want the child to be leaned back so that their back is supported, and their head and neck are supported. And then they will be able to accept purees into the mouth from that position.

Vaish:

Are you saying that doctor to me because of number two, where you’re saying that postural stability is important that you’re saying when you’re in a highchair say then you’re a little bit more wobbly? So priority number two is not met is that what

Dr. Toomey:

so so when children first start spoon-feeding, we support their postural stability before they have good head control for the study by leaning back a little bit, okay. And, and, and one of the problems with high chairs is, and small infants. And many children who have Down syndrome are either born premature, so they’re small, or they’re born small for gestational age. So there’s Ma is that many of those high chairs, those big highchairs are too big. And, and, and the baby is kind of locked in that highchair because it’s too big. And that’s why a swing seat, an infant seat, or bouncy seat, or an infant feeding chair is going to be more than a highchair. What highchair manufacturers do the WHO adjust them so that parents can feed their children from infancy to however old they want them in the highchair is they have to make a high chair that’s going to fit the size of multiple children, right, and the size of multiple children as they grow up.

Children who have tone issues, really need to be put in the right chair, right from the beginning. And so of course, when we’re bottle feeding breastfeeding an infant, we’re going to be holding them in a breast or bottle-feeding position. But when we want to start doing spoon feeding, we need to be looking at when is the appropriate time to start it? And how do you know your child is ready to start those purees. And then how do we support them. For the most part, we typically are going to be recommending that puree started about six months. And that recommendation is in place in part because of gut maturity.

As well as the fact that there are certain vitamins and minerals that the baby gets from the mother in utero. And there are stores of certain vitamins and minerals, iron and zinc being two of the most important that are used up by about the time the child is six months of age. And so generally we want to introduce complementary foods around six months of age because children have used up that store of iron and zinc that they got from their mother when they were in utero. And, and so we need to think about that. The second major factor, so one is that maturity. So the one it has to do with is that you’ve used up your stores.

The third actual major thing that most people look at is the child’s ability to sit upright for about 10 seconds with good head control. So if you put your child in a seated position, they can sit upright for about 10 seconds with good head control without falling over. So they’re not sitting independently yet, but they have pretty good head control. Now the challenge is that most children with Down syndrome are not going to be able to meet that criterion. If you put a child with Down syndrome in an upright seated position at six months of age, many of them don’t have good head control, and they’re bobbing and they’re falling still. And so what we have to think about is how do we provide extra support for the child who doesn’t yet quite have the postural stability they need to start baby food purees and that is To be in that infant feeding Chair of bouncy seat, a swing seat, where the baby can lean back and have the back of the chair supporting their position.

Right. So sometimes even in that infant feeding chair, bouncy seat, or swing seat, the baby may collapse, right, right, the one side or the other. So, again, we have to think about how we provide extra support for that baby. So one thing to do is to take a hand towel, roll it up, and put it under the child’s arms, neck, to their sides in the chair, to give them extra side support, some trunk support, and that will help the baby not do that collapsing to one side or another. And so we just take a regular hand towel, roll it up into a tubular shape, and then put it right down the side of the chair. To help keep the child in position. What you’re going to see is that at some point, when the baby gets better had control, chest control, poor control, when you’re spoon-feeding the baby in this position, they’re going to start doing what we call baby situps. And they’re going to start and they’re going to start pulling themselves forward. Because they sit up more straight. That’s when you know, it’s time to put them in an upright seated position. Because the baby is now demonstrating to you that they have enough core, chest, neck, and head control that they want to sit up, right, sit up straight.

For most children who don’t have Tony’s shoes, that’s going to be around seven months of age or so we start feeding typically around six months. In that back, leaned back position, and about seven months, most babies are going to be ready to sit in an upright position. Again, with children who have Down syndrome, depending on how low their muscle tone is, it’s likely going to be closer to eight months or nine months or even for some children 10 months before, they’re going to start really demonstrating that they can sit upright independently with good control. So you would continue to make sure they’re supported in that slightly leaned back position.

Once your child sits upright, once children learn to sit upright, then we need to support them in what we call the 9090 90 positions. But that means we want to have in their seated arrangement 90 degrees at the ankles, which means their feet need to be grounded on something 90 degrees at the knees, and 90 degrees at the hips. That’s what we’re looking for a 9090 90 position.

Vaish:

Does that position hold for older kids and adults as well?

Dr. Toomey:

And adults, you and I should be seated in a 990 90 position. That is the correct position for all of us. Those of us who spend all day at our desks seated in a chair. Part of the reason why we end up with back issues and IP issues is that we’re not seated in an appropriate 9090 90 position. I am an adult because I’m kind of on the short side. I actually sit in my desk chair with a footrest under my feet to get me in the correct seated position so I can type on my desk.

Vaish:

Because I’ve been seeing my son try to find a good foot position and he’s also five foot one inch. So I think he’s just not getting that 90 In his right feet. Yeah.

Dr. Toomey:

Right. So So if you think about it, one of the things that that that you see, for example in a highchair is that when you put a baby who can sit upright in a highchair, their feet are nowhere close to the footrest. Their feet kind of dangling out there. So I want you to do an exercise with me. Okay. You’re the people who are participating in this podcast, watching this podcast, do this exercise as well. The first thing I threw together, we’re gonna sit up straight. I want you to sit up straight with good posture. And I want you Just think about what did you just do to sit up straight with your good posture? Well, what most of us do is scoot our hind end to the back of our chair, suck in our belly muscles, pull up our chest muscles, and put our feet flat on the floor. But what happens if you don’t have the ability to put your feet flat on the floor or flat on the footrest. So in a high chair, for young children,, the footrest in a highchair doesn’t ever let them put their feet flat. So so it’s not an appropriate tool on a highchair? Or in an older child, when we put them in an adult chair. Their feet are dangling in the air.

Vaish:

Right. So we still dangle Yeah,

Dr. Toomey:

Yeah, sit back up, right for me. And I want you to pick up your feet off the floor. And we’re going to pretend that our feet can’t hit the floor. Now, this is going to be a little artificial, because we have our feet out in front of us, right, and we’re using a lot of thigh muscle here.

Vaish:

I’m pretty short. So it’s okay.

Dr. Toomey:

If your feet can’t hit the floor, think about how much more effort it is to maintain your core strings. And to keep your body in a nice upright position. Now let’s pretend that we have low muscle tone, like a child with Down syndrome. So one of the things if I have low muscle tone, is I’m going to slouch a little bit, right. And one of the things is that if I’m slouching, and I’m on a slippery surface like most chairs are that don’t cloth on them, is I’m gonna start wiggling around, I’m gonna start flying. Yeah, one of the things you’ll see, children who have low muscle tone do is try to cheat or compensate by using their joints to do the work of the muscles, because their joints are going to oftentimes be stronger than the muscles which have. So if you sit up, right, bring your feet up off the floor for me, I want us to pretend that we’re going to lock through our hips, there are two things you might see a child do, they might lock forward. And so they have a big kind of bow on their back.

So they might walk forward. And in this really locked forward position, I want you to notice how your jaw and your mouth juts forward. And now I want you to try to chew. And I want you to take a dry swab. And see how uncomfortable that is. So most of the children don’t lock forward in their hips, but you’re gonna see most children do is they locked back in their hips. And if you push your hips forward in your chair, what’s going to happen to you, you’re going to slide down out of your chair. So what happens then is children who have feeding challenges, what you’re going to see is they are going to be really uncomfortable sitting in an adult chair if they don’t have good foot support because they’re going to try to compensate for their low tone by locking their hips. And that’s going to make them get in an incorrect position for eating.

Now, what some children do is they figure out, well, I can’t really lock through my hips very well. And you’re gonna see some children locks through their shoulders. So if you’ll take your feet back off the floor for me. And we’re going to slouch through our belly, like someone with low Tom. And now we’re going to compensate by locking our shoulder blades back. So you should feel a little more partially stable. But now I want you to try to feed yourself. Yep.

You can’t feed yourself if your arms and shoulder blades are locked back. So if you ever see a child in a seated position, who has their shoulders locked back, and their arms kind of up, it’s because they’re having a problem and not being pastorally stable. So that’s another issue. Now the third way that children experience problems from seating or when they have is if they figure out they can’t walk through their hips. They can’t lock through their shoulders and feed themselves.

The only place they have left to lock is the head and neck. So I’m going to have you sit back again. Take your feet off the floor. This time we’re going to slough pure our bellies and I Have their shoulders. And we’re going to try to compensate and make ourselves more stable by using our head and neck. So you could pull back, you could lockdown, you can lock up, you could chip to the side. So whichever position feels more stable to you get in that position. And now I want you to chew again, and take a dry spot. All right, and now we can put our feet on the floor. So when we don’t have good stable foot support, when we’re not grounded, what happens is our body tries to compensate. And it’ll either compensate, if I don’t have good foot support, oh compensated the hips, the back, or the head and neck. All of those compensatory actions are going to interfere with you being yourself and interfere with your ability to swallow properly. So that 9090 position is absolutely key. And the most important piece of the 9090 90 positions is the footrest.

You have to ground the feet, you need that 90 degrees at the ankles. Now, what we recommend, after an infant feeding seat, is it possible that the family will purchase an adjustable wooden chair? Now we know that those adjustable wooden chairs are expensive. We recommend you go to eBay, you go to overstock.com. You go to the variety you know, my good neighbor, the various kinds of websites that are parent exchange websites, right, where you can ask for, are you using your wooden chair anymore, and people will send stuff to you, right? The adjustable wooden chairs are key, because you can move the footrest and the seat and you can adjust those from the time the child is nine or 10 months when hopefully, many children with Down syndrome would be able to sit upright, and sit in that adjustable wooden chair all the way up to nine to 10 years, or even older, some of those adjustable wooden chairs. You can sit in them until you’re about 100 and sometimes 100 150 pounds.

Vaish:

Did somebody I interject with a question? Yeah. So I don’t know if we’ll have time to talk about pureed eating. But what you said made me think about if a child is lacing and all of these different positions that you mentioned, tightening, whether it’s their face and jaw, or their shoulders or their hips. And so you, you talked about how each one of them got in the way of chewing and swallowing. So if that pattern is said, and then nobody’s aware of that pattern, could that potentially lead to a child maybe not progressing into chewing harder foods?

Dr. Toomey:

Absolutely, absolutely. If you do not have a good foundation, if you don’t have good postural stability, you are not going to be able to chew well. And, and so that’s why we recommend for all of those children who have Down syndrome is that once they’re sitting upright, and they go into those adjustable wooden chairs, you just have to make sure they’re adjusted correctly. So he has to drop over the front edge of the seat. And you want the seat to be supportive, have as much of the thigh as you can. And that. So you have to adjust the seat up and down but forward and back as well. The footrest as well. You need to make sure you have the footrest adjusted. So the child can put their foot flat at that 90 degrees on the footrest and the foot rash far enough forward that the whole foot can rest on the footrest and you want the seat far enough forward that the whole thigh is supported. But you don’t want the seat so far forward that the child can’t get a 90-degree angle at the knee. And then hopefully you’ve got 90 degrees at the hips.

The other thing we recommend is to get some of the no-skid matting that you would put under your carpet to keep your carpet in place or the kind of shelf liner that’s the squishy, rubbery stuff that you might put in your kitchen drawers to keep your utensils in place. Keep your glasses someplace, and you want to cut a piece of that out and put that on the seat of the chair. Because the child is going to compensate for low tone, what we want them to do is actually lock at the hips. And when you put the no-skid mat on the seat of the child’s chair, it makes their little rear end, stick to the bottom of the chair to the seat of the chair. And, and it lets the child walk through the hips, and free up the upper body and the head and neck to be able to eat better. So those are the things that we’re going to want to do. So all the beading begins from the foundation of good postural stability. After the child sits upright, it’s that 9990 positions, and that is going to last throughout their entire lifetime. And as we know, many people with Down syndrome are short, in height, right?

My sister-in-law, I think, barely made it. Five, two. And so you know, when when you’re only five, two, and you sit in adult chairs, your feet don’t hit the floor. Think about as an adult, the last time you went to a bar or restaurant that had a tall top table, you got this stool that had no rungs to it? How uncomfortable is that? What do you do as an adult? Well, don’t you start by swinging your feet? And then you start squiggling around trying to find a good place and then you’re leaning on the table. Now on the back of the chair, you know when you put a foot up, and this is why children wiggle and squiggle at mealtimes. If they don’t have good postural stability, they’re not going to sit upright and they’re not going to sit still. You only have so much motor brain available to you at any one time.

Vaish:

That’s interesting. I’m just going to have you repeat that you said you only have so many motor graders.

Dr. Toomey:

Yes, you only have so much motor brainpower available to you at any one time. So if you’re using up all your motor brain power, to make sure that you’re not going to fall on your head, you’re not going to have the motor brain power, you need to make your mouth work correctly.

Vaish:

So it’s like a seesaw. So if you’re putting into postural stability, you’re taking away from chewing?

Dr. Toomey:

Exactly. Yeah, yeah. And I think about it like that domino effect, right? Is it or think about it is, you know, a series of steps you have to accomplish in order to get that step. If you don’t have good postural stability, you’re not going to be able to make your mouth work correctly. And that’s a huge issue for children with Down syndrome that most people are missing if you get the child postural, the stable, you put in the correct support. So your child can sit upright, and maybe it means you’re going to still have to build side supports, those adjustable wooden chairs don’t have side supports, what we do is we actually velcro yoga blocks to the seat on the sides of the child to give them side support. Oh, that’s nice. That’s yeah, yeah, we just take doubles, sticky Velcro. And we just Velcro yoga blocks on the sides of the child to give them that extra practice for once you have them partially stable. Now they can focus on making their mouth work to advance from purees. But this is going to be one of the major reasons why children with Down syndrome do not advance to the next stages of food.

Vaish:

Because they haven’t established that postural instability is really stable. And this can happen with older kids too. And regardless of you could be I mean, you’re right that typically heights tend to kind of maybe it’s more likely that even an adult is is is shorter in height than somebody else. But regardless of that, you could still be partially unstable.

Dr. Toomey:

Correct? Correct. So the best thing you can do to support any child who has Down syndrome is to get them in the 9090 positions regardless of their age.

Vaish:

And I’m going to go in a foot dress for my son, right after this.

Dr. Toomey:

Yes.

Vaish:

Thank you, Doctor, I think this was this this this you came in from the perspective of a child but I mean, like but what you’re saying is, I love the I love that the two top priorities I had before I read your work, I’d never heard about the fact that breathing was the first priority and postural stability or not. falling on your head is the second priority. And you’re saying that unless these two are addressed, there’s you’re really not going to see much progress in any form of feeding or chewing. Yeah, any form of feeding. And this may even manifest as picky eating but may not really be picky eating.

Dr. Toomey:

Right, exactly. And when I don’t have good respiratory, when I don’t have good postural stability, I’m going to want to stay on the easiest textured foods. So I drink my calories because I can suck those down, and clear them out of my mouth quickly. Or I’m going to want a puree that’s just going to slide down quickly and not take a lot of effort.

Vaish:

And so eventually becomes a pattern that is hard to break. Right?

Dr. Toomey:

Absolutely. Because then you’re not laying down brain pathways to learn how to eat other foods, either. Because if somebody tries to give you textured table food, and you can’t manage it, then what you have is an aversive learning experience where you have tried something and it didn’t go well.

Vaish:

So so we really have to think about how do we physically support the child with Down syndrome first, and when they have good head control, and we feel like they’re doing okay, with the pure age, we do need to start introducing other textures to build that sensory tolerance, and at the same time, build the stability, right.

Dr. Toomey:

Because they are going to need to put more effort into learning how to chew because have low muscle tone. So low muscle tone isn’t just in your head, neck, trunk, right arms, and legs, low muscle tone, is all the entire GI tract, and gastrointestinal tract. So your gastrointestinal tract starts from the tip of your tongue, all the way out to the bottom of the anus, right? That is, and it is a muscle, right. And so if you have low muscle tone in your arms, legs, head, neck, and trunk, you’re going to have low muscle tone in your GI tract. And so that means that your tongue may not move correctly, you may have difficulties getting the food, specially textured food, to move down the esophagus with the correct muscle move movement is what’s called peristalsis, you may have problems with the sphincter muscles in the GI tract, so the valve or sphincter at the top of the stomach may be a little bit loose. And so these children can have problems with gastroesophageal reflux because that valve at the top of the stomach that’s supposed to keep your food in the stomach is loose.

Food comes up into the esophagus, that’s what we call reflux, it could be that the valve at the bottom of the stomach is loose. And so you’re having a hard time getting the valve at the bottom of the stomach to close correctly, to keep food in the stomach, so you can digest it correctly. Because after you finish eating, you have to have the valve at the top of the stomach, close to the valve at the bottom of the stomach close so that you can digest your food because there are muscle contractions as well as enzymes and other kinds of things. And then you have to be able to open that valve at the bottom of the stomach, release the partially digested food into the intestines, then your intestines have to have good motor muscle peristalsis to move the food all the way through the rest of the system. So that you can take out the nutrition you need. And to make sure that you can eliminate the waste. So one of the things we know is that people who have low muscle tone have problems with constipation.

Absolutely yes, because they don’t have the muscle tone to move the, you know, bowel waste through the large intestine and out correctly. We know that when you’re constipated, that actually can cause you to have a poor appetite. And if you’re constipated severely enough and backed up very far into the large intestine, it can actually cause vomiting as well. So, the low muscle tone is going to have this domino effect beginning with postural stability and also then impacting digestion and then also impacting the Tao waste removal and potentially creating constipation, which then cycles back if you don’t have an appetite and creating all sorts of issues.

Vaish:

Right? So it is definitely, there’s a huge cascade of muscle tone. So there are so many areas, there’s actually the outward physical area that inward, it’s also physical, but it then becomes physiological as well and eventually becomes biochemical. There’s, there are so many areas, thank you, thank you for your actually such in-depth and intense knowledge, I’ve made two pages of notes I wrote down so much this is so beautiful. How can parents of parents reach your doctors from your work with you or your organization?

Dr. Toomey:

So the best way to reach us is through our website. And that is going to be www.sosapproachtofeeding.com.

Vaish:

Can I link that in the show notes?

Dr. Toomey:

And one of the things that I’ve done for your participants is I’ve created a set of recipes, which is what we call low oral demand. Rest, I love it. Yeah, so they’re high in nutrition, but they don’t require a lot of heavy duty to do it. Because the jaw is a muscle, and the tongue is a muscle. And to chew correctly, you have to first use the tongue to move the food between the G. And then you have to be able to chew with enough strength and a rotary pattern to break up the foods to get the nutrition out. Right. So one of the things you’re going to see with children who have low tone is they may be swallowing food that is not fully chewed up. And what happens is that digestion begins with chewing. And so if you don’t chew your food up all the way, sometimes the food can’t be properly digested.

So what if parents are seeing full food in their child’s bowel movement, that’s a problem. Because what that means, if the food looks the same coming out the back end, as what it went in the front end, it means the child exerted all that effort trying to digest that food, and they got nothing out of it. And if you are having full food, in your bowel movements, you are going to have an issue that also contributes to constipation. So not only did you not get any of the calories from that food, you burned calories, trying to digest that food, and it’s made you constipated on top of it. And so now we have a whole nother layer if you can’t chew properly, on a top solution. So at this point, we probably want to think about a talk about how to help support children chewing and how they learn to chew. But in the meantime, this set of recipes will give your podcast followers some lower oral motor-demand foods that hopefully their children can manage more easily, that have better nutrition in them, and will be easy to digest as well.

Vaish:

Thank you for taking the time to create that handout and you know, sharing it with all the listeners I know that you know it’s super valuable. Thank you so much doctor to me. And I know that there’s you have so much I feel like I could take every one of the things that you said we could make that a completely different podcast, I definitely want to want to talk to you again, whenever you have a chance. Let’s there’s just so much it’s I thank you for all my heart for all so much that you’re sharing with our audience.

Dr. Toomey:

Let’s have people start with a good foundation. Yes. And think about how do we build on that foundation? Absolutely.

Vaish:

I think this is a good first place for your families to start is build a solid build foundation and back up to what’s most important and what’s most foundational.

Vaish:

What a phenomenal podcast right now I’ve put together Dr. Toomey’s freebie on my website and that is functionalnutritionforkids.com/feedingsos okay. And this is her freebie made just for you which is a collection of low oral motor demand foods. Again, it’s functionalnutritionforkids.com/feedingsos  I’m working on a pamphlet that will have a summary of all the strategies that she mentioned. We will have a one-page action sheet to take from this podcast. This will be available by Sunday evening May 8, 2022. So today is the day the podcast is being released May 6. So if you check the website before then make sure to check it again. So you also get the action handout. Thank you for tuning in and bye.

91 Light is information for your child – with Roudy Nassif

91 Light is information for your child – with Roudy Nassif

What information does LIGHT bring to your child? Can artificial sources of light actually lower attention and cause dysregulation? Can you hear light?

Roudy Nassif, founder of VivaRays, and all-round light wiz leaves us with a lot of really new information about how light influences every body system we have and leaves us with 3 tips to use light to our benefit (and our kids’ benefit)

  1. Go outside and witness the sunrise for at least 15 mins.

I just started doing this, and I can attest that I feel a lot more energetic in the mornings.

Listen on for more of Roudy’s insights on attention, light, sensory overwhelm, and regulation!

You can find more information at http://www.vivarays.com/

 

Audio Transcript:

Vaish:

What information does light bring to your child? Can artificial sources of light actually lower attention and cause dysregulation? Can you hear light? These are the questions that the amazingly articulate and light Roudy Nassif talks about in episode 91 of functional nutrition and learning for kids. I’m your host vice, you know me. I’m a mom to a nonspeaking autistic teen with Down Syndrome and a neurotypical preteen. And I teach families how to use nutrition and learning strategies to get on track with their education goals. And I’m here to help you take the next step in guiding your child towards emotional regulation, body comfort, and equal education. Stay tuned because about halfway through this episode, Rudy talks about three ways that you can get light to start working for you right away. Let’s go. I’m really excited today to finally have somebody that can talk to us about light and its effects on our population.

Today we have our special guest Roudy Nassif, he is the founder of Viva rays which manufactures eco-friendly blue light blocking glasses. For most of his life, Roudy Spent nights staying up late waking up feeling exhausted, unmotivated, and unfocused. And after visiting so many doctors trying different diets, supplements, and herbs, nothing seemed to work. About five years ago, Rudy’s depression and anguish became unbearable. So he decided to embark on a worldwide journey of learning about himself and nature. His experiences transformed his health and life. And his quest to understand this transformation and to help others led him to study light quantum biology and the circadian rhythm. And this is how Viva rays were born.

Roudy has been educating hundreds of functional medicine and naturopathic doctors about the power of light and helping them optimize their personnel as well as patients’ well-being and their sleeping patterns and their energy and focus. Roudy is on a mission to elevate people’s light environment to a whole new level of alignment with nature, in order to live in an optimal rhythm, resulting in better sleep, more energy, focus and higher productivity. And these are all my favorite keywords. Rudy, thank you for coming here to talk about them. Welcome.

Roudy Nassif:

Hi, thanks for having me on. Yeah, million. And Thursday yesterday,

Vaish:

I would love to hear more about your story. But I also want to hear about what are the physiological systems or factors that light can have an effect on? And I know that’s probably everything. And but can you were talking to most parents of children with disabilities were on might also be talking to a few practitioners. So in that context, could you just lead us through the different things that light, bad light, lack of light, too much light, whatever can have an effect on?

Roudy:

Yeah, definitely. When we talk about light, when I introduce the topic to people, most people think of light as simply something superficial, that makes vision possible. However, it’s much more profound and influential than this. Light is the most powerful force that shapes and molds every aspect of our life. And I always try to explain this through a very simple quantum equation by Albert Einstein equal MC squared. And while this is going to be theoretical, I guess it’s going to be a nice way to open up the subject, and trigger people may be to think of light in a new in a completely new way.

Albert Einstein, through his law of relativity, thought equal MC squared is light. And his mass and see is the last thing he taught us that light and matter are exactly the same things. And that model is actually light that is vibrating at a slower speed. And this means that we are light beings and everything around you at this moment is actually light that is vibrating at a slower speed. And this also means that the Earth itself, and matter itself, come from the light and is profoundly influenced by light. So you know, I pondered the beauty of this equation every morning, and we now know the light.

When light hits the cornea and it actually helps us to recreate ourselves every single morning because it’s very well known now that this slide is actually programming, all of the hormones and neurotransmitters that enable us to make a model of ourselves in space and time. And that enabled us to perceive reality, perceive ourselves perceive our environment, and the people around us. And back in the 1970s, I think it was when science first recognized that light entering our eyes was not only for vision, in fact, vision is only a very small aspect of this light that enters our eyes.

That’s interesting. And light. And science started exploring how light actually directly stimulates and regulates our endocrine system and our nervous system. So I could go more into this and explore the relationship of light between our autonomic nervous system and our endocrine system. Does that sound good to you?

Vaish:

That sounds good. And basically, what so you’re saying among the many things that like as it has an effect on our hormones and neurotransmitters also, so? Yeah, so let’s Yeah, let’s talk about that just a little bit more.

Roudy:

Yeah, definitely. I mean, I mean, like, affects our mitochondria it has it affects our circadian rhythms, which run hundreds of 1000s of bodily functions in our body, and also affects our nervous system and our endocrine system and our autonomic nervous system is this subconscious is the system that subconsciously regulates all of our inner workings of the body, like the heart, the muscles, all of our glands, that are actually designed to work for us without our conscious effort. And with that, without needing to put thought into this and this system is always maintaining and restoring balance and homeostasis. And it actually does this through subsistence, known as the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous system. And the sympathetic part is the system that supports us while in action while studying while moving and taking action in our life.

Whereas the parasympathetic is responsible for rebuilding and rejuvenating. And basically, we can think of as this autonomic nervous system as this fulcrum point and a seesaw, right, and on one side of the fulcrum, we have the sympathetic system, which acts as an accelerator. And on the other side, we have the parasympathetic system, which acts as a brake. And perfect balance is this equilibrium point, where we have a balance between action and rest between acceleration and brakes. Now, this whole system is actually governed and controlled by the hypothalamus in the brain. And what we now know is that this part of the brain, the hypothalamus, receives light-activated information from the eyes.

Okay, and this light is able to be actually controlling the two different parts of the hypothalamus that control the nervous system. Now, let’s, let’s put this into more practical means when you wake up in the morning, for instance, you go outside, you start witnessing the slowly increasing blue and green light frequencies, okay, which, which awakens you and activate your circadian rhythm. But what this blue light actually does, from morning sunlight, it activates our sympathetic nervous system. And it turns on our pituitary glands. And for example, this leads to the production of pregnenolone in our mitochondria, okay, which the body converts into any steroid that we might need, like cortisol, or progesterone, or testosterone during the day.

Now, here’s the problem, this blue light, and nature is never isolated from the other colors like yellow, green, and orange. It’s all in a calm in symmetrical way, and in a balanced way with all these other colors. And these other colors are actually designed to switch off the production of hormones as needed, right. And it helps us maintain this perfect balance between the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous system.

What most of us do, is we wake up in the morning, and we turn on artificial lights, and those lights are very high in the blue. And this blue is very isolated, and it’s not balanced with the other colors. And this eventually leads to over-activation in our sympathetic nervous system and over-activation of the pituitary gland, releasing all these different hormones like cortisol and norepinephrine and adrenaline and there’s nothing on the other side that is switching off the release of these hormones. So we ended up naturally

Vaish:

you would have had a balance where even though you’re turning on your sympathetic nervous system, you would get put automatically in some sort of a balance with the parasympathetic even in the morning. And the release of cortisol and the other invigorating hormones, let me call it that way would be in a certain balance, which is that balance is complete. So you’re on one side of the seesaw, the fulcrum that’s pushed down completely

Roudy:

100% I think, our modern exposures to artificial light are putting us in a state of continuous sympathetic arousal. And that we’re not being exposed to those frequencies of light that nature has designed for us to create the equilibrium, and to actually switch off some of the hormonal production as needed throughout the day.

Vaish:

That is, that’s really scary to listen to, because, on a very subconscious level, everybody’s constantly having this, this switch activated, maybe all the time. Yeah, and I see that you’re sitting in some nice sunlight here as you speak. And I’m guessing that’s intentional, that you said, you’re working outdoors correctly,

Roudy:

it is definitely intentional. And anytime I could set, you know, my office outside, it’s what I’m actually tapping into an enormous body of energy that nature has designed for us. And, and I’m able to harness this power, right, so it has changed my life, like tremendously and the life of probably like 1000s of people that I’ve worked with.

Vaish:

Please tell, please tell us more about your journey. I know that you’ve had a specific tipping point were or maybe not, but where you move to a greater understanding, of how light affects you and tell us your journey.

Roudy:

Yeah, definitely. So as a kid, probably three or four years old, I was suffering from debilitating headaches, extreme agitation, and an inability to focus. And back then I was diagnosed with a very heavy label called ADHD, which I had to carry on my back for so many years. And to me, you know, I was a very intuitive kid, I knew what was going on in my environment. And I had an inner voice within me that was guiding me to not be in that environment.

My teachers and my surroundings didn’t understand that and I couldn’t articulate it. And growing up, I turned into a night owl, and I lived a very destructive lifestyle where I was staying up very late feeling super wild and stimulated to then wake up the following morning, lacking the energy, focus, and determination. So eventually, after they lived in this life, this led me to deep depression, and chronic fatigue, and completed this orientation. And to be honest with you, it was sabotaging every aspect of my life as a civil engineer, I couldn’t work my relationships felt like a roller coaster.

I was desperately trying to look for a solution in order to feel better. And as you mentioned, in the beginning, I kept going from one doctor to another, but to be honest, I felt exhausted with all the different health opinions about what I should be doing. And conventional medicine told me that I should be taking prescription drugs, which I thankfully refused. So I went on this holistic journey of trying so many different diets, supplements and herbal formulas, even meditation, physical exercise techniques. And while all of these built a very great foundation in my life, unfortunately, I was still stuck with the cycle of feeling super wired at night, very depressed and fatigued in the morning.

Miraculously, one specific event, change all of this. I spent six weeks on a rural farm in Quebec, okay, I was camping in my tent, and I was exposed only to natural light during the day, and fire and candlelight during the evening. Now, within a matter of three days, something magical happened. I started winding down in the evening feeling super relaxed and mellow. To then wake up before sunrise for the first time in my life, feeling super rested, energized, and extremely focused.

I was farming all day outdoors, dancing, cooking, hiking, studying, and even deepening my relationship with my loved one and to me, I was in complete awe like that was magic. I didn’t really grasp what was happening. Now, this magic didn’t last very long because after my foreign trip ended, I came back to the city, and at the time, I was still living in Toronto. And within a matter of few weeks, I literally fell back into my depression and inability to focus, and ADHD tendencies, tendencies. So at this point, I was very puzzled, like what happened, you know, I was asking myself deeply and intensely in my heart like, what is that and I remember going to a 10-day vipassana retreat sitting in silence.

During that retreat, the one question that I had wordlessly in my heart is like, what was the and the, like, something was continuously coming back into my consciousness about the light environment. And to me, I was like, what like, right? Like, how could it be? I mean, like, we turn on and off the lights, how could it affect my health. So this led me to a seven-year journey, where I was studying quantum biology, light and circadian rhythms and consulting the world’s leading experts in this field, and I start learning how the quality of the light that we expose ourselves to throughout the day will massively affect the quality of our sleep, focus, moods, and productivity.

Vaish:

When we were when we had met, maybe it was it a couple of months ago, for the first time, I remember having this other conversation with this, you mentioned right now that you were very intuitive as a child and I was struck with this your intuition as we spoke a couple of months ago, I remember sharing with you the stories of some autistic students that I had spoken with and they have continuously mentioned that one of the factors that are dis regulating for them in many environments they go to is that they can hear the lights, firstly, the light is too white, it’s too bright, it’s just the light itself is dis regulating, and then the sound of the lightest is regulating, then you had started talking about that.

Now, I’m wondering if you would be willing to share a little bit more about this. And I want to add a little bit more background because a lot of times, of our many of our kids are nonspeaking. They’re, of course very many of them are also very intuitive and fine-tuned to their environment but don’t necessarily have immediate control of telling somebody what is affecting them in their environment. So we’re just taking them from home to school from one light to another light from one sensory stimulus to another sensory stimulus. But I’d love to hear your take on what you’d like to share about this particular experience.

Roudy:

Yeah, definitely. I think people with special needs and especially kids I deeply deeply deeply connected to their inner worlds and how this inner world is continuously in dance with the outer worlds and when those kids are hearing the lights they’re actually hearing the toxic electromagnetic frequencies that are being emitted from nonshielded lights that are flickering also at a higher rate.

Vaish:

So you end up keyword is the keyword here flickering at a higher rate is that’s what stayed in

Roudy:

words, okay. non-native electromagnetic radiation, nonnative Is that what you said? Yes, non-native, because native is like the electromagnetic radiation that we will attune to from the magnetic fields of the Earth and from the sun. And those are the magnetic frequencies, electromagnetic frequencies that have driven our evolution. Throughout the 1.5 billion, it evolved from a single-celled organism called bacteria to a phenomenal human being that is able to think perceive, imagine fields,s, etc. But non-native electromagnetic frequencies are actually new to us.

They’re 150 years old. And they come from artificial light sources. And they can be disruptive in so many different ways. One is the spectrum of light that we are being exposed to. And how this spectrum of light could be extremely unbalanced, compared to the spectrum of light that we get from sunlight. Also, we want to think of the timing of the day, because we all know that as soon as the sun sets and for millions of years, our bodies were exposed to complete darkness.

This signal of darkness that goes through the eyes drives every healing and rejuvenating process that happens in our body was actually designed to heal, and rejuvenate at night in complete darkness when sleeping and this doesn’t get triggered unless our eyes perceive the absence of blue and green lights. Because that’s when melatonin the sleeping hole. moon gets released by it’s not only a sleep hormone, it’s actually the highest antioxidant in nature and it keys cleans off inflammation, it also acts as a support for our immune system.

It enhances our nervous system and our ability to deal with stress. So in our current environment, we are living in perpetual, artificial light, exposure day and night. And this is destroying those rhythms. And as I mentioned, those circadian rhythms, drive 1000s of bodily functions in our body, every cell in our body has a 24-hour rhythm that is actually entrained by the rising and falling sun. So we need these light and dark cycles in order to be able to function at our optimal during the day, in order to sleep, repair and rejuvenate at night. And I think a lot of those kids are actually hearing that flicker because that flicker is subconsciously communicating to our nervous system, even though we’re not consciously aware of it.

In the quantum world, which is the world that is beyond our five senses, a very small stimulus can create amplification, cascading effects in our cells, and even one photon marriage. So when we are dealing with the quantum world, that’s when we want to start dealing with the unseen and unheard beyond what we’re used to perceiving through our five senses. And these things happen at a subconscious level. In fact, the circadian system and how light stimulates the circadian system are completely subconscious. Even though it drives every biological function in our body, we don’t have a conscious awareness of it, so to speak. And I do believe that those kids are intuitive to the point that they cannot, they can connect to the unseen and unheard, which is affecting all of us.

Yet, we are literally blind to it. And science is showing us that mitochondria disruption and circadian disruption that is caused by a junk light in a junk artificial environment is actually the cause of 90% of all modern chronic diseases, including anxiety, depression, Alzheimer’s, cancer, and so on. And there are very interesting studies by Dr. Wallace from the University of Washington, showing how these things are actually being generated in the mitochondrial genome and not in the nucleus genome.

I don’t want to go too deep into this, but, but what I’d like to say is that we can learn so much from these kids with special needs. Because I know I know in my heart that these kids are more attuned to the environment, we are all being affected, yet, they are more sensitive to it. And on a cellular level, we are all being affected. And we and one day we run into a chronic disease, and we start thinking like, Oh, why, you know,

Vaish:

thank you for sharing that I have many, many, almost 1000s of questions coming in my head. So I’m just kind of sorting through them to, to find. So as you said that we’re all exposed to junk light all the time. And I’m sure many parents, are you panicking right now? What can you do? Because first, we’re living in artificial environments, we’re sending children to school, there are so many things, right.

There are some environments outside our control some environments within our control, even in the environment in which we live within our control. We have to live with other people who are outside our control and who will make a certain kind of light. And so basically, it’s a complicated matrix of things. But if we could talk about maybe three things, or any number of things, actually, I just like to use the number three that that parents can do right away to, to support this, or maybe not solve but support this issue. Where would they be?

Roudy:

Yes, definitely. That’s a great question. And there are a lot of things and it’s very simple things that we can do. Also, I want to take the opportunity to share that I’m not going to be able to go over all the solutions, obviously, because we won’t have enough time. So we also have a free guide on our website www.vivarays.com. It’s called the key to mastering your sleep and energy. And it’s designed to distill down all the science of quantum biology and circadian rhythm into very practical means giving actionable steps of what can someone do today in order to start elevating the light environment to a whole new level. So I want to

Vaish:

link to that. I linked to that the show notes

Roudy:

definitely. Now from a circadian perspective, there are very simple things that we can start doing today, in order to retrain our circadian clock to the solar timing, and start completely elevating our sleep, energy, and productivity. Now, number one, and one of the most important things is waking up in the morning, going outside right away facing east, and witnessing the sunrise. And even if it’s cloudy, even if it’s cloudy, and if it’s cloudy, that’s when it’s even more important to go outside and witness the sunrise because that’s when we actually need more time to collect those photons into our circadian system and activate that system, which will signal to our body that’s daytime. And this signal is extremely important because it’s going to increase cortisol in a healthy way and adrenaline. And this is what is gonna inform our body. That’s actually the time and it’s time to stop moving and get going. It’s time to stop focusing, it will increase our sharpness, our alertness, and our ability to feel happy and motivated about the day. So okay, I’m

Vaish:

going to put all my objections first, even if it is cloudy, you said yes. So obviously, I’m going to say even if it’s winter and icy cold, just go and see it doesn’t matter. Right. So that is clear. What about if you have if, if, if you’re bad sleep, or if you have not slept enough? Now, let’s say we’re talking about kids, this is one issue that keeps coming up because my son was having a lot of trouble sleeping, finally, it’s working out, but I’m never sure should I wake him up? Or should I not let him sleep? Which is more important sleep or circadian rhythm?

Roudy:

That’s a tricky question. And it’s not sleep or circadian rhythm, I hear this as is it more important to sleep and extend the sleep or to see the sunrise. Because yes, eventually, when your circadian rhythm is in harmony with the solar time, you’re going to start waking up, you have this inner alarm clock that is going to nudge you to wake up. And it’s going to take probably two to three days to readjust the circadian rhythm so that it’s in complete harmony with the environment. But where do we start from morning sunlight, actually, it will provide energy for the natural conversion of the amino acids in our eyes to convert into serotonin and melatonin? And this melatonin gets activated at night. And in one hour, I start perceiving the absence of blue and green lights.

So here’s where we need to find balance for this equation. Because first of all, if we don’t get enough morning sunlight, we’re not going to build up melatonin in our system. And second of all, what most people do maybe is the sunsets, they come back home and they are exposed to the second sun from artificial lighting. And what this does, even though we have built enough melatonin during the day, melatonin will not be released, because our brain and our bodies are being tricked that still daytime, it’s increasing our cortisol at the wrong time of the day and destroying melatonin production.

This will start shifting our sleep in the wrong direction. And this may be why your son has been struggling with sleep. So he feeds wire and then stimulated that night when he’s actually supposed to be winding down and going into deep states of repair and rejuvenation. And so you got to start from somewhere. And one side and then the other side will automatically adjust so to speak.

Vaish:

Right. Right, that makes sense. So so so tell me a little bit more about your tip number two, you said once one sunset happens, did you say that already? Did I miss it?

Roudy:

So we talked about sunrise and we like if it says super like blue sky day, a minimum of 15 minutes is great and will be enough to activate the circadian system. Now, the more the better, obviously because it’s not only about the circadian system, there are 1000s of different things that light could affect Okay, yes. Now, if it’s a cloudy day, a minimum of 30 minutes and if it’s an overcast day, a minimum of 45 minutes. Okay. Okay,

Vaish:

what is the difference between cloudy and overcast?

Roudy:

While cloudy is like a regular cloudy day like white clouds like

Vaish:

cloudy is white clouds and,

Roudy:

and overcast is like you know when brightness is extremely low outside. But it’s great to mention the even on an overcast day. It’s we’ve done the measurements and it’s at least 10 times brighter than it is in an indoor lit environment. And we need that brightness to stimulate our circadian system. So that’s why number two is throughout the day, taking sun breaks Okay, and going outside for five minutes and exposing our skin and our eyes to natural sunlight, no sunscreen, and no sunglasses. Number three is

Vaish:

Oh, no sunglasses either. Okay, that makes sense. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.

Roudy:

There’s a lot to say about this, obviously. But maybe we can explore this in a different episode. Yes. Number three is as soon as the sun is setting around that time, also going outside and witnessing the slowly fading light, because this is, we got to start thinking that light is information. And arguably one of the most important information in our environment.

Vaish:

That can be the title of this podcast light is information I like

Roudy:

100%. So witnessing that is very important, because it’s going to signal to our nervous system, our hypothalamus in the brain, which will send hormonal messages to the millions of cellular clocks in our body, that it’s time to wind down and to start preparing for rejuvenating night’s sleep. Okay, and as soon as we come back home, that’s when it’s extremely important to have a high-quality lens technology system like the reverse glasses, which we could talk a little more about. But those glasses, long story short, are designed to filter out those frequencies of light from artificial light that will confuse our brain and our bodies into thinking that it’s daytime again and start disrupting our circadian rhythm.

Vaish:

I love those three tips. Is there. My one question about Tip two, and then I would love to ask you about her glasses as well, is that a frequency for the sun breaks you mentioned or just whenever you can go out like taking, do some work go out to some work quite like that.

Roudy:

So important times, I’m gonna highlight some important times. And anytime we’re talking about sunlight, we got to remember that we have also a shirt annual living, which is connected to the seasons and our geographical location. Because if you’re living up north, for instance, UVA and UVB from sunlight are not present all year long. And those will act as important information to signal to our system about the time of the season. So our body also makes the necessary physiological adaptation to actually adapt to the season. Okay, but important times are around 9 am. And that will also depend on where you are. And on the time of the season, I recommend using an app called I think it’s called D minor.

There’s another one called the circadian, the circadian app, I’ll leave links for those too. But what this app does, it takes your geographical location and starts telling you about when UVA rises when UVB rises, and the time of the sunrise, the times of the sunset. And UVA is a very important signal to our body because around 9 am as UVA rises, this actually starts shutting down the hormone production of cortisol and progesterone from the pituitary gland. So it acts as a balancing signal to that blue light that activated the pituitary gland in the morning.

Okay, now, UVB is the frequency of light that enables us to make vitamin D when it strikes the skin. So when can we make vitamin D will depend on your geographical location? This is why I recommend this app. But generally speaking, when the sun is hot at its highest position in the sky, so that would be around 1112. And depending on your skin type, and depending on how much you’ve built your solar colors, you know, I could spend all day long in the sun and I’m okay because I usually build my solar colors in the spring so that I can absorb more light and summer without burning.

Vaish:

And what is that? What did you say about solar why is solar color

Roudy:

so the solar callus is. So you build your solar callus in the spring by gradually exposing yourself to light so that you become more resilient to the frequencies of light in summer, and your body becomes more able to absorb that light without burning. And one way we are built to enhance our solar callus is by actually exposing our skin to early morning sunlight when the sun is rising because that’s when the sun is actually high in infrared light and has no UV whatsoever. And this light actually prepares our cells and our skin to be able to absorb UV which is the opposite spectrum from infrared and To be able to absorb the frequency of light without burning and enhance our ability in absorbing that light.

Vaish:

Thank you, thank you for explaining that. And

Roudy:

UVA, around 11 or 12, UVB for making vitamin D. And again, when the sun is setting, okay.

Vaish:

Got it? So you mentioned that after, after sunset, the, I don’t know, did you mention it, it might have been from a previous conversation, but the importance of also minimizing external light, artificial light after sunset. And I think this was from a previous conversation, but you’ve mentioned it today as well. And one of the ways is to use it because of all that it’s not possible all the time to turn off the light in your home. So it’s to use blue light blockers, is that correct?

Roudy:

Yes, I usually don’t like to associate much with the term blue light blocking glasses, because there’s a lot of marketing gimmick around it. And a lot of products that we’ve tested are actually filtering random frequencies of light. I see. And this is why like in vivo rays, we use the circadian lens technology system, which is actually composed of three lenses, one for the daytime, when we are actually indoors in front of digital devices and artificial lights.

This lens is actually designed to address the specific frequency of light, distorted, unbalanced frequency of light that we expose ourselves to from artificial lights. And it’s designed to reduce it, and balance that blue with the green and yellow so that we’re getting more proportionate and balanced light into our eyes. And that’s only to be worn indoors in front of artificial devices or under artificial lights.

Okay. And the other two technologies, one is called the evening. And this one is designed to be worn after the sunset right away, and it blocks all of the blue and only the highest frequency of green. So that you could start winding down and relaxing. Yet, you’ll still have the energy and vigor to run your evening tasks without feeling very sleepy. And the nighttime glasses are actually put on one hour before bedtime because those are designed to block all blue, all green and decrease the brightness by 15 times, which literally signals to your system that it’s completely dark outside and starts increasing melatonin production and growth hormone in the body. And that’s another very important aspect for children because many children nowadays are being challenged by the shutdown of growth hormones, by artificial light exposure.

Vaish:

I see. Yeah, that is definitely I can see how every one of the topics that you have addressed could potentially lead to a completely different podcast episode for each of them. So yeah, and as growth. Growth hormone is so big in so many aspects. And just making a quick note of that to discuss later. And for me to think about it a little bit. But thank you so much for sharing these tips. And, and your website is Viva res.com, the IVARAY s.com. This is where people can find it, I will put a link to I’ll go ahead and find the exact link to the free ebook or guide that you mentioned. But this is also where people can find the three lens technology, the different lenses for the three different situations or times that you talked about.

Roudy:

Yeah, I want to add one more thing, because you just came through. And I think it’s very important. One thing that parents could do to really help their kids is to unplug wi Fi’s, and turn off phones while sleeping. Because all of this electromagnetic radiation is actually picked up by the pineal gland that produces melatonin. And it completely disrupts melatonin production and growth hormone for kids. As well as for adults, by guests. Kids are much more vulnerable because they’re at this stage where they are growing. And this is a very important thing for parents to do.

Vaish:

Okay. This continues to be and I’m sure many parents can relate to, this. This continues to be an argument between me and my husband who works till 2 am at night with Wi-Fi. So this is ongoing. Maybe I’ll play this podcast for him and see if something changes. Yeah. Thank you so much for your time. We really I really, really love this conversation. You touched on so many aspects. And it’s like I said, it’s got my brain running in many, many directions but I  can so many of these things that I need to do right away. After I spoke to you last time, I did start getting up and doing the tip number one getting out for sunrise. So I’m going to see if I can implement that with it as well. Beautiful. Yeah.

Roudy:

Awesome. Very nice. Thanks. Thanks so much for having me on. And it’s a pleasure. And I’d be glad to have an explore other topics as well because as you mentioned, the topic of light is extremely big and influences us in so many different aspects. So there’s a lot to explore.

Vaish:

Yes. Thank you. Did you love the tips that Rudy gave about light? Now like I said, I’ve actually started tips one and two for myself, and my son also just started this week. It’s rather fun to just get up and see go see the sun be in the sunlight for 15 minutes right away after waking and it also helps me get my morning walk right after I get up. So it actually feels really nice. That is it from us for this week. I really look forward to seeing you again next week. But wait, if you love this podcast with Rudy as I did, please take a minute to drop a review and a rating it really helps us reach more people.

Roudy:

Bye