Watch the full interview below or listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.
Stu: This week, I’m excited to welcome Sandie Gascon to the show. Sandie is certified integrative healing practitioner who has spent 10 years researching every aspect of natural healing. Due to her past conditions of lupus, migraines, interstitial cystitis and a whole host of other symptoms, she made it a lifelong quest to learn how to overcome her health conditions.
Some questions asked during this episode:
- How do your treatment protocols differ from mainstream conventional medicine?
- How can functional lab tests fast-track actionable results?
- If I came to you overweight and fatigued with digestive issues, where would you start?
Get more of Sandie Gascon:
If you enjoyed this, then we think you’ll enjoy this interview:
The views expressed on this podcast are the personal views of the host and guest speakers and not the views of Bega Cheese Limited or 180 Nutrition Pty Ltd. In addition, the views expressed should not be taken or relied upon as medical advice. Listeners should speak to their doctor to obtain medical advice.
Disclaimer: The transcript below has not been proofread and some words may be mis-transcribed.
Hey, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition, and welcome to another episode of at the Health Sessions. It’s here that we connect with the world’s best experts in health, wellness, and human performance in an attempt to cut through the confusion around what it actually takes to achieve a long-lasting health.
Now, I’m sure that’s something that we all strive to have. I certainly do. Before we get into the show today, you might not know that we make products too. That’s right. We are into whole food nutrition, and have a range of super foods and natural supplements to help support your day.
If you are curious, want to find out more, just jump over to our website, that is 180nutrition.com.au and take a look. Okay, back to the show. This week, I’m excited to welcome Sandie Gascon to the podcast. Sandie is a certified functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner and whole-body healing coach who helps people heal from illness.
In this episode, we discuss the differences of functional versus mainstream medicine, and dig deep into lab tests that provide actionable results. Over to Sandie. Hey guys, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition, and I’m delighted to welcome Sandie Gascon to the podcast. Sandie, how are you?
Good. How are you doing?
Very well. Very well. Thank you so much for sharing some of your time. Very, very intrigued to dig into your knowledge, and listen to some of the stories and information that you’ve gleaned over the years. But first up, for a lot of our listeners that may not be familiar with you or your work, I’d love it if you could just tell us a little bit about yourself, please.
Yeah. So, I am an integrative healing practitioner. I am the founder of the Integrative Healing Academy. I’m the author of Heal Yourself. And my journey through natural healing has been going on for quite a while. It’s been really spurred along through my own health issues. That’s really what pushed me onto this path.
I ended up having my first migraine when I was seven, and they just kept getting worse over the years. As a teen, I was diagnosed with bipolar depression, and from there, I really, even at that age, wanted to cure migraine. So, my goal was actually to become a doctor, and I was put on a lot of medications. And over the years, I realized that becoming a doctor wasn’t for me because I couldn’t get off of these medications.
I wasn’t told about the side effects. I wasn’t told about the fact that my body would become very dependent on them. And I ended up changing my career path. After I finished my degree in biomedicine, I went and became a massage therapist. And it was in my graduating year that I ended up developing food poisoning. And from there, my health just kept spiraling.
Within a year, I was diagnosed with lupus. And a year after that, I ended up having to quit work and move home with my parents. And I ended up going through a really dark, dark year in 2012 because I really felt like I had no hope. I knew I wanted to heal naturally, but the things that I was trying wasn’t working. I was mainly focused on diet, in particular, being raw vegan, and it just wasn’t working for me.
So, it was actually through a podcast, and it’s why I’m so passionate about doing podcasts, and reaching out to people because it was in a podcast that I actually had a really big mindset shift when I was listening to it. And I realized that I had to not focus on diet. I had to look at root causes of illnesses, and root causes of my symptoms, and really take my science background and figure out, okay, why am I having these migraines?
Why am I having this autoimmune issue? Because it’s not just what the doctors, at the time, said it was. They had told me I’d only have about 10 years to live without medications, and I didn’t want to go on those medications. And they had really just put a label on a bunch of different symptoms that I had. So, I wanted to get to the root cause of my different symptoms.
And I really turned to looking at the biology of the brain, and how we can affect our neurotransmitter levels, and make changes to our neurotransmitter levels based on supplements. So, I was able to deal with the migraines, get off the antidepressants that I was on. And from there, I really turned to looking at detox pathways and the gut. And I kept putting things together.
I was actually able to get back to work as a massage therapist. And the only thing that I really couldn’t make a budge on was my skin. I used to suffer from terrible cystic acne. My face was just covered, my back was covered, and I kept trying all these different cleanses, and quick fixes, and nothing was helping. I just kept getting worse. And I ended up developing interstitial cystitis.
So, it was a year that I spent suffering before I finally decided to take the plunge, and invest in myself, and learn how to analyze tests and be able to run tests on myself. And quite quickly after I did that, I was able to figure out what was going on. I realized that my ammonia levels were very high.
I was having an issue with oxalates from all the years of being raw vegan. And everything that I was doing was just a perfect storm for destroying my bladder. So, I was able to get that a lot better. And I started my business at the time called Motivated 2 Heal. I started working online.
And over the years, I’ve developed a really holistic program where we focus on rebuilding the body first, rebalancing the body, and then going and addressing the different root causes, working on the gut, working on heavy metals, removing pathogens. I turned the approach around from my experience with my clients and with working on myself that that was what was needed to heal.
Wow, that’s amazing. That is fantastic. Good on you for figuring it out and becoming that detective, which typically won’t happen I think these days or can’t really happen with conventional medicine, just with constraints, and budgets, and things like that. I got a whole heap of questions that I wanted to ask you, but I’m not so keen to ask them anymore because I want to dig more into that story.
And I think that most of our listeners will as well. And just in terms of, I’m intrigued to hear perhaps, the steps that you took that then led to the discoveries that allowed you to chip away, and improve your health, and perhaps realize that you’ve got an issue that needs to be fixed and then how you fixed it. So, I’m guessing, first question for me was, what was the first aha moment when you started your healing journey and how did it come about?
Yeah. For me, I was on Effexor, which is an antidepressant. It’s an SSRI. So, it slows down the breakdown of serotonin. And when I was diagnosed with lupus, I was also having a heart arrhythmia, and they prescribed me a beta blocker. And beta blockers work by blocking dopamine’s effect on the heart.
So, my first aha moment was, oh my gosh, I just need to figure out how I can build my serotonin levels. And then, I’m going to be able to get off this medication. And when I was figured out that we can use amino acid therapy, there’re different precursors and co-factors that get our brain to make more serotonin, then I was able to wean off the effects.
So, it took me about a year. I had to take out one beat at a time. But once I got off the Effexor, it was amazing how many of my symptoms went away. So much of what I was experiencing was side effects from the medication. So, the brain fog, the fatigue, just no motivation whatsoever, that was all coming from the drug. And when it was gone, then I felt free again.
My whole mind just felt… I felt like a new person. And it’s very different to describe because when I was on the medication, yeah, it decreased my migraines a little bit, but I was a zombie. I really didn’t have any emotions. I didn’t feel very much joy, anything, just some mild anger every once in a while.
But you could, at the time, people will call me a Vulcan because if you crashed into my car, I would be like, “Oh, whatever.” And now, if you crashed into my car today, I’d probably be the same. But it’s not from a side effect. It’s from a lot of mindset work, and a lot of mental training, and a lot of focus on gratitude. So, if something happened in my car, it would be different, but before I would just be a zombie.
Wow, that’s fascinating. I’m keen to touch a little bit on your diet as well. I’m just thinking about the timing of perhaps, well, I haven’t even asked whether you’ve changed your diet, for one. But I’m guessing that you have, because you mentioned lowering oxalates and things like that. And firstly, I think I’ll start by saying, I respect everybody’s diet choices, whatever works for you.
We’re all very different, even though we’re the same. And it’s important for people to try things. But when you mention raw vegan, I know that it’s a very tricky diet to follow if wanting optimum health because you are going to be susceptible to a whole raft of deficiencies. And also, then you have lots of defense mechanisms from plants that come into play.
And you mentioned oxalates, lectins, phytate, salicylate, everything in that realm as well. And if you’re not supplementing like a scientist, I think then you could be on the road to-
Exactly. You’re going to cause some issues for your-
… definitely, don’t follow that diet at all anymore. And it’s not sustainable. At the time, I was eating about 4,000 calories a day and I was consumed, consumed with my diet. I just was obsessed with food, and eating, and making all of these intricate dishes that honestly, nobody else would eat because they tasted like crap. But I was looking for something, and it definitely was not helping my neurotransmitter imbalance.
But over the years, I have tried many different diets. And the one that I talk about in my book is a more traditional eating. I find that when we look back throughout history, the time in our life where we see people living the longest would be our grandparents. And they grew up on farms. They had access to clean meat. They were eating produce.
They were eating farm fresh eggs. They were eating raw dairy. Yes, they were consuming grains, they consumed grains, but the grains was a lot different than what we were eating. So, to me, it’s going back to that traditional low-chemical diet, where we’re really sourcing out the food that we’re putting in to make sure that the chemicals aren’t there.
Eating grains that are non-GMO, and free from pesticides, and eating sourdough bread. So, souring, and sprouting, and soaking, and just really lowering, like you said, the plant’s defense mechanisms that do have an effect on our body. And just really moving back to how we ate before we started adding in the chemicals.
Yeah. I think it’s so important because unfortunately for us, we are living in convenient times and it’s very easy to access convenient food. But unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to be that convenient for our health because like you mentioned, in terms of the bread that we eat nowadays, has been hybridized for increased yield and production.
And to make all that more convenient for the producers of that, and the body just doesn’t recognize it. And hence, every second man, or woman, and child these days seems to have a digestive issue of sorts. And all of our fruits and vegetables are sprayed, and the soil that they’re grown in is depleted as well. So, it’s really, really tricky.
And I remember going back to my grandparents on a Sunday afternoon, we used to have a Sunday roast, and in the morning, I used to go into the garden with my sisters and we used to pick the potatoes that we were going to eat, and we’d pick the carrots, and that’s just how it was.
And then, when you looked to the left and to the right in there, that little veggie patch at the end of their garden, everybody had their own veggie patch, and they were growing their own produce. Of course, nowadays, it doesn’t happen and we purchase produce, and it’s wrapped in plastic, and sprayed with everything.
It’s really, really tricky. So, I completely agree when you talk about perhaps, and accessing more nourishing whole foods, and being less laser focused on whether it be vegan, vegetarian, paleo, primal, carnivore, whatever it is, and almost just getting back to our roots.
So, now, that’s great to hear, and great to hear that it helped you as well. So, then, moving along that timeframe, so you managed to take yourself off the medications, and you were making some changes to your diet as well. How did that make you feel, and what were the next steps or aha moments?
Yeah. So, really, mirroring, trying to mirror what I did at the time would take people… it took me years, years, and years, and years to figure it out. And that’s where with my program, I’ve condensed it into something that’s so much more easier to follow. And I ended up making so many mistakes along the way because of trial and error.
I would be, “Oh, I have this symptom, I’m going to guess.” And we don’t have to do that anymore. We have access to some really amazing lab tests that basically just show us, take this, this is what your body needs to heal, add it in. We definitely need to focus on getting in basic nutrients in the proper forms for our genetics because people are most of the time, not taking the right supplements for their body.
And even if you have a really clean diet with the amount of chemicals right now, with the amount of emotional stress in our lives, we need to supplement to get our bodies where it needs to be.
That’s right. And oftentimes, you mentioned having the intelligence to do that through testing, and there are some really smart tests these days. But it’s very, very easy for any of us to go into the supermarket and think, boy, I feel fatigued. Well, let’s get some B vitamins or maybe some zinc, maybe some magnesium. Who knows? I’m just going to go in there and I’ll pick whatever the label says I need, energy focus.
But unbeknown to us, we might then create deficiencies in other areas because typically, Mother Nature has it sorted out when we access these nutrients from whole foods. But then if we take a ton of synthetic, whatever it may be, ascorbic acid, we can’t do better than Mother Nature. Why don’t we just eat the orange? And there are a whole heap of different synergistic stuff going on.
Yeah. And we definitely should eat the orange, and we should still supplement because sadly, our oranges are now just not what they used to be.
I think you’d have to eat 20 oranges and-
But they are twice the size, right?
They’re twice the size, right. Big is better.
Yeah. Right. So, smart testing, change of diet, and shift of mindset. And that was one of the questions actually, I do have my list that I want to talk to you about. Because I’ve spoken to a number of health professionals or pioneers in this space about mindset, and realizing that you can actually elicit biological and chemical changes in the body just with a different shift in mindset.
Because I guess things like stress hormones are quite different to happy health-giving hormones. So, my question to you is, how important is the right mindset, and any advice on trying to shift to the right mindset when wanting to improve health, when perhaps you’re not feeling in the right space you were once?
Yeah. So, really, definitely, it’s a huge part of the picture. I’ve gotten to a place where I normally don’t take on clients unless they’ve made what I call the shift. So, it’s moving from a place of… and there’s no judgment here because I was there, I was for a very long time. But it’s moving from a place of what I would call victim mentality in that feeling that the world is happening to you and you don’t have any power.
So, when we realize that, okay, I have the power to change any situation that I’m in, and when people make that shift and understand that they have that power, and it’s their responsibility to heal, and it’s their responsibility to change, and to grow, and when they make that shift, for me, that is a prerequisite for me to take them on as a client right now.
More so, because I’m really moving away from taking on clients, and just moving to working with my Integrative Healing Academy. But that mindset shift is so big because if you’re not in a state of healing, you’re not going to heal. If you’re not in a higher vibration, then the body, anything that you give the body is just going to constantly be broken down because of how the body is in a state.
It’s technically in a state of breakdown. So, we know that these are measured physiological responses that are thoughts do affect our body, and we can really tell that by, if you’re walking through the woods, the forest, I want to say bush because I’m a Canadian girl.
Yeah, no, we understand bush in Australia.
Okay. So, you get it. When you’re walking through the bush, and you see something on the ground that you think is a snake, and your heart rate goes up like sky high, or you hear a noise and you think that there’s somebody behind you, and you’re going to feel that response in your body. And that was a thought that there is something here, but most of the time, there’s nothing there.
And you’re alone in the bush by yourself, but you had a thought that there was something there, and it activated this whole stress response in your body. And the majority of people are walking around in a stress response all day, even to the… all night, some people are up thinking about things all night, and scaring themselves. So, they’re constantly breaking down their body.
And no matter how many supplements we give that person, they’re not going to use them. So, we need to bring the body into a state of peace. It needs to find a state of rest. Are you going to feel terrible, and move into joy and extreme enthusiasm? No. But we do need to get people to make that shift that they have the ability to do it. And it’s not mind setting is not just pretending to be positive.
Its learning tools to increase your resilience. It’s learning to set boundaries. It’s learning to work through emotional trauma, dealing with dysfunctional relationships. And if people are in a dead-end job that they don’t like, that is all very important and needs to be addressed. There’s no supplement to fix somebody’s relationship.
So, in my book, Heal Yourself, it’s broken into technically, three parts, but really, four. And the first part is all about the body, and the second part is all about mindset. And then, the third is all about the spirit and meditation. And the appendix is all about analyzing the tests. So, if we’re looking at it, half of the book is about mindset work and spiritual growth. So, it’s important to put that effort there.
No, that’s excellent. So, you’ve touched on the book, so I’m keen to hear a little bit more about it then. So, it’s called Heal Yourself: Mind Body Spirit. And so, what could the user expect from the book? Is it a blueprint to get into where they want to be, or is it a starting point to get them to be curious and ask the questions that hopefully will get to-
No, it really is a blueprint. It is like a healing bible. The first part outlines my program. It talks about things like nutrition, and oxalates, and thyroid, and the program itself, and the steps you need to take, and the tests that you want to run. Everything has gone over in order, and you can literally go, and order the labs, and then use the appendix to help you analyze your own labs.
And then, part two, at the time of writing the book, was all of the mindset tools that I had accumulated over the years, I had put into part two. And part three, spirit is all about meditation, and really tuning in to our connection with source, tuning into our passion and our purpose. Because a lot of times, we’re dealing with illness because we’re not on purpose.
We’re not following the path that we need to be. And the body is here saying, I’m going to keep bringing this up until you change, until you deal with this, right?
Absolutely. And I think that mindset area as well can easily be categorized as woo-woo, but you realize that when you work on it, and you mention that the body will just keep coming back and saying, no, no, no, that’s true in everything. When something is meant to be, and you are living your purpose, and you’re on the right track, all of the doors open. They just do.
And there is synchronicity, and synergy just occurs daily, by the hour, and it’s just the most profound… it’s one of the most profound areas, I think, to come to terms with. Because oftentimes, you catch yourself thinking, “Wow, is this déjà vu, or how can this be that I’ve found the perfect car park spot, or the perfect job has just come up, or I’ve bumped into a person that I was going to call, wanting to call for years, and I found all of the answers?
So, there’s a lot to that. And I think that if we can treat that with a little bit more open-mindness, and less resistance, and perhaps categorically, in that woo-woo crazy space, it can be so hugely powerful. But I had a question just rolling back to your health journey because on the topic of mindset, you’ve mentioned that you had skin issues.
And if there is anything that will knock your confidence, it’ll be skin issues and acne, terrible cystic acne is the worst. And it would be really, really hard to try, and work on your mindset, and be positive when you are not feeling anywhere near that space because of the way that you look, and because of what’s happening with your skin.
And then, I think ultimately, that could compound because you’re anxious, and you’re living in this fight or flight, and you’re just depressed, and nothing is working, and you’re scrubbing harder at your skin. So, what did you do? How did you tackle that? Because I feel like once you’ve overcome that that is almost the catalyst to go, right, I can take on the world now because I’m glowing.
Yeah. And it was funny, I didn’t actually do anything. So, once I started to run the labs, I just dealt with what the labs were showing me. Instead of trying to do things for my skin, I actually stopped doing anything, and just stopped touching my skin. Then, I stopped washing my face. Even to this day, I don’t sit there and wash my face. I don’t use chemicals on my face.
The only thing that I do is when I do shower, which is probably about two, maybe three times a week, sometimes one, because I am a barn girl. So, you don’t need to be looking very nice when you’re at the farm with the horses. But when I do shower, I just use water. So, I don’t use any chemicals. I put jojoba oil on my skin after a shower.
That definitely didn’t really help, but the issues that I was having that was causing interstitial cystitis, and all of the imbalances that were there, once I started to address those, my skin just cleared up on its own.
So, what functional lab tests did you take with your skin in mind?
Yeah. So, at that time, it was still very different. I hadn’t developed my program. So, I thought for a long time that I had high estrogen levels. So, when I actually ran a DUTCH Test to look at my hormones, my hormones were very, very, very low. And I had been taking a lot of different herbs to lower my estrogen, and I actually needed more estrogen.
And then, the other thing that I ended up realizing was I had an issue with ammonia. My ammonia levels were very high. I was eating a lot of sulfur. So, I was causing more issues with my body because I was just piling on the sulfur that my body was not able to handle. So, as I was able to detox the ammonia, it cleared up my bladder, my skin really cleared up.
My brain felt better and better as the ammonia levels went down because it also affects neurotransmitter levels. So, that was a really big thing for me. And I ended up, at that time, I ran an Organic Acids Test, and I was able to see that my ammonia level was off there. And over time when I dived into genetics, I recognized that I do have a genetic mutation that makes me more prone to high ammonia levels.
And it’s something that I’ve really correlated over the years. I work with a lot of women with interstitial cystitis, and it’s very common for women to have interstitial cystitis with this mutation that raises their ammonia levels. So, it’s pretty cool how that-
That’s fascinating. So, for everyone listening there as well, and for my knowledge as well, so you mentioned you were consuming lots of sulfur. Now, people typically would say, “Well, sulfur, that sounds like a chemical.” But that was through green leafy vegetables, and lots of phorophane, like you eat cauliflowers, broccoli sprouts.
So, it was actually when I went high fat paleo. So, I’ve tried most of the diets out there, and that’s where I’ve now settled on a traditional diet. But over the years on this healing journey, I have tried so many different diets. And at the time, I was doing high fat paleo, and I was consuming a large amount of eggs. I was doing very little carbohydrates. So, I was doing a lot of cruciferous vegetables, which is very high sulfur. And that was just driving the ammonia level sky high.
Right. Fascinating. And did you supplement with anything during the time when you were hoping to reduce the sulfur levels to support other hormones?
Yeah. So, things that we use to detox sulfur is one, you have to lower your sulfur intake. So, that’s the eggs, the nuts, the seeds, the cruciferous vegetables, garlic, onion, all of that stuff have to go. And so, many people right now, they’re very conditioned to think that that’s what we need to eat. We need to be eating high fat paleo. We need to be eating low carbs.
And it can be very hard to counter condition some of these so-called healthy diets, which they’re not right for everybody. And we have to really start tuning into our individual tests, our genetics, and then just listening to our body because I ignored my body. I was eating this way, and I was also programmed to believe it was right. So, I kept eating like that, and I kept ending up in the hospital totally ignoring my body.
It’s really tricky because oftentimes, we’ve got access now to social media, and the internet, and everybody, and their dog have an opinion. And more often than not, the people that have an opinion and a large audience have solved a problem for themselves. And lo and behold, I’ve landed at this solution, I’ve solved my problem. Here is the answer to your problems.
It just doesn’t work like that.
It doesn’t work like that.
And I listened to an interesting podcast yesterday around that topic, around actually, the pros and cons of keto. And this particular individual’s conclusion was that actually, carbohydrates are not an issue, and they’re not so much of an issue in the terms of raising insulin like we thought they were. It generally rolls back to poor food choices, and it would be the vegetable oils, and the linoleic acid and things like that that create the problem.
So, this particular influencer was high fat keto, transitioned over then into introducing way more fruits into his diet and said, “Well, look, my bloods are fine now. Previously, I think that I was struggling on keto, my hormones were going crazy, sex hormones were tanking. Skin was terrible because I was feared these carbohydrates and we actually do need carbohydrates to thrive,” or at least he did.
We do. Yeah.
And of course, the narrative at the moment is carbohydrates are the enemy, and all you’ve got to do is pull out those carbohydrates from your diet. But like you mentioned, you are the detective with the information through raft of tests. So, you actually know what’s happening because how many years could we waste going from raw vegan all the way up to carnivore trying to fix an issue when you just don’t know, right? And you could just get this test and you go, “Oh, well hold on a minute. This is actually helping.”
Yeah, exactly. It’s scary. And I’m actually seeing some really scary trends with the keto because I get a lot of people coming to me. And I had a client who came to me on a keto diet, and they are now diabetic. Their body can no longer handle any carbohydrates whatsoever.
We’ve also found, there’s some new research out there that says that it doesn’t matter whether it’s a natural sweetener or artificial sweetener, it’s causing insulin resistance that the insulin is released from the taste of the sweets. And if you are putting something sweet in and there’s no glucose, then the body is releasing the insulin.
And eventually it goes, “Hey, there’s nothing there.” So, when you do eat glucose, there’s no response. So, now we have insulin resistant people who are eating low carb and they’re wondering, why am I diabetic? And it’s scary and it’s incredibly, incredibly hard to reverse.
It makes sense because there’s a lot of hardware in the mouth through the oral microbiomes as well that tells the body, right, “We’ve got carbohydrates coming, prepare yourself because we’re going to break stuff down.” And specifically coming from the diehard vegan fraternity that it’s almost a badge of honor to get those ketone levels as high as you can. And oftentimes that could lead into junk keto, which is every powder and keto cookie under the sun.
Which really, ultimately-
It’s not real food.
It’s not real food. And ultimately, I think often, a lot of issues stem from the quality of the food that we allow ourselves to eat, and whether it be raw vegan with pesticides, and herbicides, and glyphosate, and everything under the sun with an emission of healthy fats and amino acids, which essentially, the building blocks of life for us, all the way to, like you said, high fat keto. I just wonder, how much damage is the internet doing?
A lot. It’s like, why can’t we just find some type of balance? We’re so extreme in thinking, and really, that’s all that we need to do is, is think about balance and listen to our body. And we are seeing with the high fat keto, we’re seeing increases in sex hormone binding globulin. We’re seeing reverse T3 going sky high. We are seeing this insulin resistant, and we’re seeing massively high levels of cortisol.
And you can present people with these labs and say, “Hey, this is not working for your body. You feel good because your dopamine and your cortisol is sky high.” It feels good, but your body will eventually say no. And I personally, for me, because it was dealing with chronic health issues, a lupus diagnosis is a bigger diagnosis, and I stopped doing things to stress my body out.
So, I don’t do extreme exercise. I walk. I do yoga, I ride horses. I don’t try to put my body under a lot of stress. I watch my mental stress, my emotional stress. I really take care of that, set boundaries, and really fill my own cup up first so I can give from a place of abundance. So, when we see things like this where these tests are saying the body is screaming at you that this is not working, then we just have to hope that people are going to eventually start to listen and find some balance.
Yeah, that’s great advice and super, super important. And I think along your lines, and have had every test under the sun and love data. So, cortisol tests, my cortisol was so dysregulated years ago. Yeah. It was literally a reverse curve. And I felt like I was just come out of a heated board meeting at 10 o’clock at night all of a sudden. And so, you realize, right, that’s great.
There’s some data there. That’s actionable. I can fix that or I can at least work on that. Similarly with heavy metals, I’ve got heavy metal testing done, sky high, which led me to purchase an infrared sauna. And that’s part of a healing mechanism, tested, six months later, way better.
So, I love the fact that it’s almost the smart detective because you’re using the tools that enable you to fast track this journey because we’ve only got so many years on this planet. We don’t want to spend a quarter of our life trying to figure out what this issue is with trial error, trial error, diet X, Y, and Z. It’s just insane, but-
Yeah. It’s why waste all that time?
Absolutely. You mentioned program, so is that something that you use in conjunction with the book, and how does that work? Because obviously, we’ve got loads of people listening to this that, no doubt, will love what you’re saying. And for anybody that is on YouTube and watching this, you look like you are thriving.
Quite different to the picture that you painted at the start when you’re talking about where you’ve come from. So, you’re clearly a shining example, and you’re using the right tools, and you’ve managed to focus this into a program and a book that can help people. So, tell us about the program and how that works.
Yeah. So, the Heal Yourself program starts out by rebuilding and rebalancing. So, our goal is to give the body tools to start to heal itself. We want to work on neurotransmitters. We want to work on our adrenals, and our sex hormones, our detox pathways, our nutrient deficiencies, our mitochondria. All these things need to be supported.
So, I do start with, when I work with clients, I start by having them transition to a more traditional diet. So, it’s moving away from whether they’re on an extreme standard American diet or whether they are following one of the other extreme bad diets that are out there. We’re trying to find some balance. Sometimes that’s adding in more carbs and all of it is cutting out fake food.
So, even those so-called healthy diets with all their little bars, we’re moving to real food. And we also start by running an Organic Acids Test, a full blood panel, and I look at people’s genetics. So, that’s going to give me a picture of what those different systems are doing. And it really allows me to customize people’s supplements based on their genetics.
So, there’s big hype around people wanting to take methylfolate and methyl B12, and that’s not right for everybody. Somebody like me, I need very little of that, very little. There’re some people who do need a lot, but we need to look at, okay, how much does your brain need? Do you need any methyl donors? Or some people have something called an active CBS mutation.
And methyl donors are not their friends. So, we have to look at the genetics to see what our detox pathways are doing, see what our brain needs, get the support on board, and that I called my foundation support. We do that, those three tests, those protocols normally take about two months to get on board. And then, we wait a month and then we run the DUTCH.
And the reason why we wait for the DUTCH is because that foundation support is often enough to bring the adrenals and the sex hormones into balance on their own. So, if we can save our self adding in some supplements, let the body do some healing on its own, that’s great. But we always need to make sure, adrenals, sex hormones need to be supported.
And then, we go to gut work and heavy metal detox. So, that’s running labs to see what is in our gut, what type of protozoa, do we have parasites there? I start with parasites and protozoa, tackle their biofilm because a lot of different things hide in their biofilm. Lyme can be hiding in a biofilm of protozoa. So, there’s no point trying to kill Lyme if you have protozoa present.
So, we tackle those. We work on addressing bacteria. Next, yeast, looking to see if there’s SIBO there, so that’s small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. And during that heavy metal, during that gut work, that’s when I add in some really gentle heavy metal binders so that we can cover all the metals that are there. But recognizing that safely detoxing metals does take a good amount of time.
Yeah. It takes a while, definitely. You mentioned SIBO as well, how do you treat SIBO? Because I know that there are a couple of routes, and the very holistic route, which can take a lot longer than the prophylactic, which can be more harsh and is often frowned upon.
Yeah. And it normally doesn’t work. So many times, people come to me with SIBO and they’ve done multiple rounds of SIBO antibiotics. So, what I do, I don’t address it right away. We will put in some supplements that can help like say, Atrantil, some motility boosters, like some ginger, digestive enzymes, work on diet to really make it so that the symptoms can go down.
But we need to rebuild and rebalance first because gut work is really stressful on the body. And before we address SIBO, we need to address protozoa. So, protozoa are pain in the butt to get rid of. They require biofilm busters. They require longer protocols because of their life cycle, and they’re tough to get rid of. They’re not supposed to be there. And it’s stressful on the body.
So, when people have not done that prep work first, they’re normally not going to be successful with their gut protocol. So, we want to do enough work on the body, make it so that when they get to gut work, they’re not dying. They can get through it, they can work, they can function, they can feel good, and they can get through the entire gut protocol without having to stop.
So, after we’ve cleared those protozoa, then I do use different antimicrobials. You can use this biocide protocol. There is the Candibactin-AR, BR protocols. I do test for gases first. So, that’s going to show me whether I’m seeing high hydrogen, high methane. If we see our flat line, then we know we have hydrogen and sulfide SIBO, and then the treatment for that is a little bit different.
You do have to avoid sulfur. We don’t really have a treatment for it yet that works. But for the hydrogen and the methane, yeah, we definitely have some really good herbals that we can use. And it normally takes a good 30 days, and it might take one to two rounds. And we retest and see where we are because there are these different protocols. And for some, one protocol works for one person, and another protocol works for a different person.
Totally. And I think really important to note that what you’ve spoken about there is radically different to going to the supermarket and purchasing a bottle of probiotics, or prebiotics, or symbiotics, or whatever the next biotic is going to be to try and fix that. Or perhaps just testing the latest build your gut diet.
Which is just not going to work, unless you’ve fixed this-
No, especially not with SIBO. It’s going to make things way worse.
Stay away from those probiotics.
Yeah. And oftentimes, people will jump straight in and they think, “You know what? I’m going to get the sauerkraut, and the kimchi, and I’m going to drink the kombucha, and get the kefir, and then I’m going to be all right.” But oftentimes, no.
Not with SIBO.
No. The opposite will happen.
Yeah, it’s definitely the intelligence is required and we’ve got the tools available. It would be great to actually be able to access these as well. Wow. So, a question to you then, I wonder what the state of the health of the planet would be if every health professional took this route? Can you imagine? It’d be quite different, wouldn’t it?
I’m trying to really reshape. Not the medical model, because that’s just very ingrained in a lot of indoctrination and fun things. But when it comes to the holistic model, I’m really working to reshape the way that even our holistic practitioners are working because so many people are just focusing on one thing.
And that’s why I did create the Integrative Healing Academy to teach people these things. So, teach people how to analyze the labs, and to follow a holistic program versus just throwing paint at the wall, and trying to focus on something like candida or Lyme, having a more holistic approach and working on the body as a whole.
Yeah, and absolutely. Well, I really enjoyed this conversation because I think you’ve just highlighted that there is a solution for everybody. And oftentimes, you can fix your problems. You absolutely can fix your problems, but you have to do it in a smart way. And there isn’t a magic pill and things take time. They really do.
And I’ve realized that and experienced that firsthand with skin, and gut, and heavy metals, and all of those things. And I’m way away from where I want to be, but realize that, yeah, it can all be fixed, largely, with the right test and with the right intelligence. And I think with the right practitioner, which is super, super important.
Yeah. And determination, you got to get determined. If anything from my journey, when people, if they read my book and you really dive into the stuff that I’ve went through, it is a determination. I was so determined to figure it out and it just kept me going. And definitely, it was the universe saying, “Here, figure this out. This is going to help you help other people by really learning it yourself.”
And since then, just working with hundreds of people in over 25 countries all over the world, it has just enabled me to put this program together that is so holistic.
Yeah, that’s fantastic. Well, good on you. That’s amazing. I hope we can send a truckload of people to your website, to your book, and your program to find out more because it’s so important to realize that don’t worry about things like hope, we can use tech, and we can make sure that we can put you on a better path. We’ll get there.
Wow, that’s amazing. So, Sandie, we’re coming off on time, but I’d just be keen to touch on just some non-negotiables, your daily non-negotiables. The things that you do now, perhaps things that you’ve decided to do after a lifetime of work, and experience, and discoveries that enable you to be the best person on that particular day.
So, things that you need to do every single day to crush your day. And it may be things like, I like to get out and stare at the sun in the morning. I like to have a glass of water. I like to maybe do some yoga or journaling, don’t know. What would they look like to you?
Definitely, meditating every day. That is non-negotiable. And it doesn’t have to be sitting down 20 minutes undisturbed. It’s just having that time every day to clear my mind, really get in touch with nature. To me, getting out with my horses as much as possible is very, very important to my mental health.
That’s my passion. This is definitely my purpose, but riding horses, that’s my passion. So, making sure that every day, I am really stepping into my passion, and my purpose, and just taking that time for a quiet space.
Brilliant. Yeah. I used a phrase, or a friend of mine used a phrase a while back and he said, it’s really important to pay yourself first. And that really resonated with me. And oftentimes, we used to say to people, well, look, find what you love. Do more of it. But that little phrase, pay yourself first. Like you, you get outside, and you meditate, and you work with your horses.
That for you, I guess you’re paying yourself. That’s what you love, that’s what grounds you, and that’s what sets yourself up for the right day, week, month, year, et cetera. Healthy habits. Brilliant. Well, I’ve really enjoyed this conversation, Sandie, and I’ve-
Same to you. Thanks for having me.
No, and for everyone out there then that wants to find out more, connect with you, contact you, grab a copy of your book, Heal Yourself: Mind Body Spirit, and discuss perhaps the program, where can we send them?
Yeah. So, they can actually get a free paperback copy that’s anywhere in the world, www.gethealyourself.com, and they can find me at sgintegrativehealing.com.
Wonderful. That is fantastic. So, Sandie, thank you so much for your time and your wisdom as well. I look forward to sharing this with our audience.
You’re very welcome. Thanks for having me.
Thank you. Bye-bye.