The above video is 3:52 minutes long.
Watch the full interview below or listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.
Guy: This week we catch up with Nutritionist and Naturopath Lynda Griparic, as we dive into a topic not too often spoken about at the dinner table… constipation and bowel movements. In a world fixated on weight loss, quick fixes and calorie counting, we dig deep into why you really need to look under the hood! If you want amazing energy, less reaction to foods, be your ideal weight, glowing skin etc… it all starts here.
Knowing how your internal plumbing works and having regular bowel movements are crucial for long term health and how you look and feel on a daily basis.
“… if we’re not getting the plumbing working well and we’re not regulating the bowels, we’re not going to be shifting weight, because it starts to then affect the way that we use our hormones. That toxicity and that inflammation can lead to leaky gut, which can create a bit of a resistance to weight loss…”
― Lynda Griparic, Naturopath
About Lynda Griparic: Qualifications; Advanced Diploma of Naturopathic Medicine, Diploma of Nutrition, Yoga Teacher & smartDNA Genomic Wellness Practitioner.
“I am passionate about clean whole nutrition and it’s simple power to have a profound and positive effect on our energy, health and happiness. My own journey has taught me however, that nourishing the body with fresh, clean whole foods must also be supported by a practise of movement and play that gives sustenance to our body, mind, and spirit completely; sustaining greater energy, vitality, and connection with the world.”
Full Interview: Constipation, Gut Health & Weight Loss Connection
- Discuss constipation & why are regular bowel movements so important?
- Expand on the link between constipation and weight loss?
- What foods would you recommend we eat or avoid to improve constipation?
- Give us 5 tips to get make us more regular?
- How much do you think stress and lifestyle play a part in constipation?
- And much much more…
Get More Of Lynda Griparic:
- Get moving daily with BetterMe Tea
- Follow Lynda on Facebook
- Follow Lynda on Instagram
Hi, this is Guy of 180 Nutrition. Welcome to today’s Health Sessions where we cut through the confusion by connecting with leading global health and wellness experts, to share the best with the latest science in thinking, empowering people to turn their health and lives around. We’re doing it this week with the lovely Linda Graparic. I’m allowed to say she’s lovely because she’s actually my fiance, so this is a very exciting episode for me to bring Linda into the forefront on the podcast. She is a wealth of knowledge and I can say that because I see single-handedly what she does. She’s been a huge influence on my own personal life and the way I certainly think about health and how the body operates as well. She’s a qualified naturopath and nutritionist.
Actually, I’ve been pushing to get her on the podcast for a while and she’s finally accepted. It’s all been my idea to do this. We get into the topic today of constipation and gut health. Constipation is a little bit of a topic that I guess doesn’t get talked about much but it is a vital part of the body human mechanisms and how we operate on a daily basis and the effect of not going to the toilet on a regular basis, what that can actually do to us. And of course gut health, which we’ve covered a bit in the past on the podcast and how these two interline. What fascinates me as well is, I pride myself on health … We’re doing these podcasts, we’re meeting all of these amazing people and we’re getting all this content out to you guys.
One thing I do is have a stool test done once in a while and I had one done, literally, about three months ago and it came back really poorly, the results. I was really shocked. It’s like, “What the hell?” I’m doing all these things right and I’m still susceptible to these things.” Bacteria is an interesting thing. Parasites is an interesting thing. You can contract them from anywhere and they do affect you and they affect your body. My first tell-tale signs were my joints were starting to ache when I was at the gym and I’m like, “Something is not right.” I had it tested and Lynda’s been guiding me now, for the last three months, in overcoming this. Already, I’m feeling much better. I can feel my energy is increasing. I’m sleeping better.
I just want to put out there, if you’re proactive, these are things definitely worth thinking about and we cover so many words of wisdom today. Strap yourself in. This is an awesome podcast, even if I’m bias by saying that. I have no doubt you’re going to get a lot out of it. I just want to touch on a couple of things as well. First of all, I’ve moved to Snapchat. I’m still trying to figure out what the hell it is but if you are on Snapchat, hit me up, ask me questions, reach out to me. My user name is guyl180. If you’re on Snapchat, come and say hi. I just wanted to mention as well that our podcasts are shot in video as well. It is only in Skype format but ultimately we transcribe them as well so they can be read.
All the links are there for the resources and of course you get to see our pretty faces for an hour if you feel like sitting down, if you’re not out and about walking. They’re worth checking out and if you want to keep up to the latest, simply just subscribe to our email, where we bring content to you every week. Ninety-five percent of the content we actually put out and do is … Everything we do, ninety-five percent of it is free. We want to empower you to have the best wellness and health possible, so you can put them choices in for yourself, making choices, and proactively move forward, knowing that you’re doing the right things.
Of course we’ve got the super food products that are there, which we do, but they’re tools to help you move forward with your health and life to make clean eating easier. Anyway, I’m going to stop [rambling 00:03:57]. Let’s go over to Lynda. Enjoy. Hi this is Guy Lawrence. I’m joined with Stewart Cook as always. Hi Stewart.
Guy:Our lovely guest today is Lynda Graparic. Lynda, welcome to the show.
Guy:Lovely to see you again. Now, you do realize a topic like today, Stu, could really produce some really bad jokes during the podcast so …
Lynda:Bring it on.
Guy:… be prepared. Be prepared. Stu, you’re very quiet there. That’s very unusual. I was waiting for your cue.
Stu:No, I’m just enjoying the compliment. You are the one that normally talks out of your bottom but we’re going to get into that today anyway. I’m really looking forward to it, so don’t worry about that.
Guy:Okay. Obviously my biased opinion, Lynda, I know you’re very passionate about health, nutrition, food and constipation and gut health and everything in between. For everyone that’s listening to the show, that is going to be knew to you, would you mind bringing us up to speed a little bit about yourself and why we’re excited to have you on the podcast today?
Lynda:Yeah, good question. Who is Lynda? Lynda is the person that’s going to help you regulate your bowels, get on top of gut health and lose weight. If you need credentials, I’m a naturopath, I’m a nutritionist, I’m a yin yoga teacher and a health and wellness blogger. Don’t have the best grammar but I absolutely love writing. That’s me in a nutshell. That’s what I do.
Guy:What got you into this whole business in the first place because you’ve been studying naturopathy for a long time now?
Lynda:Yeah, so I’ve been in the health industry for over fourteen years. I guess my personal story with this … I’m only going to probably bring up two, so it doesn’t get into a big tangent and please reign me in if I do go off onto a tangent because I absolutely love …
Stu:I’m just going to do that. I’m just going to do that. I think that’s the scuba sign for like, “I’m out of air.”
Lynda:Feel free. I’m not offended at all. If I tend to get a bit excited and not make sense, please pull me back into [inaudible 00:06:06].
Stu:Guy’s got his finger on the mute button right there.
Guy:I’m ready. I’m ready.
Lynda:Hit it. My personal story, I guess, many, many moons ago, I grew up being really insecure and painfully shy and a bit of an introvert. Didn’t really want to be seen but at the same time being scared of not being seen. This will all makes sense and it’s relevant. I guess towards my later teens I had a disordered eating. I had anorexia. Again, this is important to what I do now. I’d isolate myself from people. I thought that by being really, really skinny and aesthetically pleasing to the eye … Which is what I thought skinny would be to me and to other people … that I would be happy. I got to the point of just really isolating myself and really not being happy at any weight that I was, and even when I got to the weight that I thought I would be happy, I was miserable, just so unhappy.
I would be really sneaky, like a lot of people with disordered eating have. At the time, I was with my first boyfriend and my mom, being European, would make these amazing meals for me. I would hide the meals and on my way to his house, just turf them, basically. I would spend a lot of time exercising so I would spend about an hour and a half in the gym in the morning but not only that, I’d work. At the time, I was working in a clothing store. I’d catch a bus into work but I would get off miles away so I could just walk and get another thirty, forty minutes of exercise in. I was completely obsessed with what my next meal was. I was completely mortified and petrified of food and just being overweight.
That’s the story there, but I got to the point of being really, really unhappy and really skinny and still not being happy, and so I kind of got to this place of, “Well I got to where I think that I would be happy and I’m not.” I just made a decision I guess to chose life and I started to slowly, gradually get back out there again with friends. I started to incorporate a few bad foods that I was very scared of eating and slowly, slowly got out of that funk. I really, really, truly understood at that point, how much food, is information and fuel for the body because the moment I started to bring in food … They weren’t rubbish food but just food in general, regular eating again and just wholesome food … I started to feel happier.
I started to be able to cope with things a little bit easier and just enjoy life a lot more. I guess that brings me to why weight loss is a big part of what I do. Because I’m all about long term, sustainable weight loss. I like bringing people out of a point of fixation, around food, and having it completely consume their thoughts and their mind and energy and losing quality of life. That’s the weight loss side of things. The whole constipation thing, I’m very passionate about helping people move their bowels. As we’ve all heard, improving the health of your gut can improve your overall health, in general. My personal history with constipation is that with my previous role I would travel to Cambro, every month but we’d also have sales meetings all around Australia and every time I’d travel, I’d get sluggish bowel movements.
I wouldn’t go for a day or two and it would really make me feel literally like shit. It would affect my mood, I’d feel bloated. With constipation, you get all those other abdominal symptoms as well, so bloating and gas and all the rest of it. I’d find myself collecting all these herbs and brewing up a tea, just to get things moving again and I, in no way, wanted to get onto the laxatives because I was very aware of the consequences of laxatives. I decided that I wanted to develop a tea that people could travel with, that didn’t create dependency and also was just going to support digestion in general, breakdown of foods and elimination of foods and all that sort of stuff.
That sort of made me develop the Better Me Tea but also my bowel care programs, which I’m very, very passionate about as well and being so obsessed and fixated on talking about poop and actually just bringing the shame and the embarrassment out of not going to the loo and making it something lighthearted. Because a lot of people are afraid to talk about their sluggish bowels. In fact, I think the stats were about sixty-seven percent of people self-prescribe with laxatives without seeking help from a professional.
In fact, I think it was that the sales of laxatives supersede most medications, bar aspirin and that’s huge. It just goes to show how much people are using laxatives, but how much of those people are actually just afraid to talk about the fact that they aren’t moving their bowels because they’re ashamed? I just kind of want to make it a very, very light topic and get people moving their bowels because [they just 00:11:42] need to start to feel good.
Stu:Then, let’s get into talking crap. Let’s talk crap this morning. Before we go into talking crap, which you’re clearly very passionate about …
Stu:… I can see.
Stu:That does come out of your mouth. Let’s just touch on a little story. I’m going to share the story of when I visited you guys last weekend, weekend before. I’m a regular guy and I don’t mean that I’m six foot tall and I weigh eighty pounds or whatever. I go to the toilet, religiously, every day, twice a day and just fine. Get up, feels good …
Lynda:You know what? Can I interrupt there?
Lynda:That’s irregular. You’re irregular then.
Stu:Why? Oh, of course [crosstalk 00:12:28]
Lynda:It’s not a common thing. It’s not a common thing, but anyways, moving on.
Stu:In my household, I’m a regular guy but travel does upset me and I don’t know why. I don’t know whether it’s anything to do with …
Lynda:I have some ideas.
Stu:… the stress of your travel and pressures and having to be here, there and everywhere, a shift in eating patterns, maybe even pressure and altitude and stuff like that. Twice a day, for me, every day, like, has always been that way. Feel great. Comes out … Isn’t the term complete elimination, where you just flush your bowels and it feels fantastic.
Lynda:Yeah, slides out easy.
Stu:It does, yeah. Don’t even have to wipe sometimes. How cool is that?
Stu:I come to fly up and see Guy and yourself and in the morning like, “Oh, I don’t need to go to the toilet. That’s really unusual.” This was a … What were we on … like four day stint? And I couldn’t go to the toilet. This is so unlike me and I started to feel like heavy and lifeless and I ate a lot of food as you know. I eat more than most mortals, I just do. I don’t know, it’s just the way I am. For the very first time in a long time, I had a day where I just didn’t want to eat anything. Got up, skipped breakfast. I didn’t eat until about 3:00. I felt lifeless …
Guy:He was the happiest human being to be around at that point.
Stu:Subsequently, all fixed, you know, the moment I get back home. My question to you is, why are regular bowel movements so important? I get that … I’ve experienced all of this and I can kind of see it from my perspective but why? Tell me from the techie side of things, what’s going on? Why do we need to …?
Lynda:There are so many reasons why regular bowel movements are important. The key ones that I like to talk about is the fact that when we move our bowels, we’re removing waste, we’re removing toxins, we’re removing hormone byproducts which we need to get rid of. We have other elimination organs, our skin, our kidneys, our lymphatic system and all that sort of stuff, but it’s our bowels that are most abused and neglected. What happens when we don’t actually move our bowels every day or as regularly as we would like to, is that we reabsorb those toxins, we reabsorb the waste material that we want to get rid of and that can create lots of issues in the body. It starts to then, we recycle them in the bowel, it causes inflammation.
It starts to, then, weaken the intestinal lining and integrity so it causes what we call leaky gut. As the name states, the cells that join, the tight junctions that join in the intestines become weak. Undigested food particles move through, cholesterol, toxins waste material, in general. The body, then, has a bit of an immune reaction so then there’s further inflammation. Then the toxicity, that the body then has, goes on to effect all of the organs in our body and particularly the weakest organs. That’s a big one, toxicity, inflammation, diverticulitis as well.
Guy:What’s that mean?
Lynda:When we’re moving our bowels, every single day or when we’re actually straining to move our bowels … Maybe we’re going every day but maybe they’re pebble poos or maybe they’re really quite large and they’re hard to get out and we’re straining. We can often cause a bit of an out-pouching of the intestinal lining, so the muscular contractions tend to relax and not work so well there. It develops a pocket in the intestines, in the sections of the intestines. Food collects there and it tends to ferment and it tends to rot and what they say putrefy. It causes toxicity in the body and it stimulates the growth of pathogens, so bacteria and fungus and all that sort of stuff in those bowel pockets.
That’s just a few reasons, to be honest. There’s just so many and a toxic body, in general, is a poor oxygenated body, so it’s a tired body. There’s not a lot of oxygen being delivered to the organs, in the body, in general. A tired, exhausted body doesn’t eliminate well. It doesn’t detoxify properly. I’m sure you’d agree, toxicity and inflammation can affect our overall health [crosstalk 00:17:23]
Guy:I was going to ask. The symptoms, all that, is the internal stuff. It sounds pretty full on, so then for the listener, listening to this, what would that transfer to? Is it low energy …
Guy:… lack of sleep, weight loss?
Lynda:Yeah, thanks for bringing me back to center again. I get a bit excited.
Guy:No, that’s good.
Lynda:Inflammation, in general, and toxicity in the body … Well, let’s start with toxicity in the body leads to chronic inflammatory conditions and they look like acne. It looks like eczema. I looks like autoimmune conditions, so problems with thyroid, and the most common one being Hashimoto’s, which is an autoimmune condition. Then you’ve got PCOS and depression, anxiety. All those sorts of things become affected. On a more superficial level, and I guess, on a more socially traumatic level, bad breath, body odor, that sort of thing, skin conditions in general, rashes and inflammatory conditions of the skin, I should say. They’re some of the really common chronic inflammatory conditions. Then of course, inflammation of the bowels, so Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, all of that disruption from inflammation in the bowel, can happen as well.
Guy:What is the ideal … I appreciate that everyone is different, right? People listening to this, should they be going every day, twice a day? What’s kind of …
Stu:What’s the norm?
Guy:What’s the norm?
Lynda:Yeah, okay. Let’s start with there is no normal, there’s only averages.
Lynda:Yes. And studies show that anywhere between three times a day, to three times a week is normal. I completely disagree with that, to be honest. That’s probably your average, I should say. I think if people are regularly moving their bowels, and that’s every single day … It may not be complete. Trying to move your bowels every single day is a very good thing. Obviously when you travel … Like Stu, you’ve experienced, or you’re highly stressed, you tend to hold onto stuff. You may miss a day, here and there, but we’re shooting for about once a day.
Lynda:It’s not very common, I have to say. I don’t think … To be honest, with all the patients that I see, the people that move their bowels once a week or three times a week, are really not comfortable. They may have accepted it as their normal, but not comfortable.
Stu:We’re talking that three times a day, to three times a week, is the norm.
Lynda:Is what they say, studies have shown is the norm in society.
Stu:From your professional experience, once a day should at least be the standard, to be healthy from an elimination perspective.
Lynda:I truly believe that once a day is what we should be aiming for. I don’t want that to be something that people get really, I guess, disappointed that that’s not happening for them or … Because people do get a bit anxious that they’re not going every single day and I don’t want to instill fear but that’s sort of what we’re aiming for. God knows, when I travel, you know, it may be a day before I go or if I’m really stressed … I’ve got lots of tools, under my belt, to help me move my bowels regularly, but I still come across those moments where I don’t, because for whatever reason, the things that drive my constipation are things like stress, are things like travel. It’s different for everyone but I think what we really want to shoot for is once a day, in my true, honest opinion.
Guy:I think it’s really important to say that, even though you might be instilling fear because if people are aware of this knowledge, then they can start to take action. Because the amount of people we’ve interviewed on this podcast, that have all sort of [come back 00:21:24], the importance of gut health, in general, and this clearly, being constipated, affecting gut health to a huge degree, you know, it’s an important one. Like you said, it needs a proper fix. Like just taking laxatives, daily, to just try and eliminate it is band-aid treatment to something more [crosstalk 00:21:44]
Lynda:What upsets me, actually … It scares me, the consumption of laxatives, because do you know what laxatives do the body?
Stu:That was going to be my next question. What are the downsides of taking laxatives every day?
Lynda:Dependency is one big thing. What that means is that you’re no longer going to get the results from taking one pill a day, you’re going to need more to get those results. It’s like, I guess, alcohol, you build up a bit of a tolerance. If you’re drinking every day, you build up a bit of a tolerance. You can handle maybe five in a day, whereas if you don’t drink for a while and maybe you have a drink, you’re off your chops. Dependency is one thing but you also tend to create a bit of an imbalance in your electrolytes, sodium, potassium, all those sort of things. What that translates to health wise is that, that affects your colon health but also heart health, so cardiovascular functioning gets affected.
Also, I guess a bit more of a rarer thing, but long term use of laxatives, can create organ dysfunction so kidney damage. It could also make the bowels lazy, which is a common thing as well. I get that you’re going to need more to get the results and if you decide to come off it, you’re going to need to start to reset and reboot and regulate. One thing, you mentioned Guy, about … It’s weird calling you Guy. You mentioned that gut health is really important, obviously, to overall health and one thing I did forget to mention with … What are the consequences of constipation? Weight gain, so issues with weight. Even though that is a big part of what I do, with supporting people in their health, I always try to get them to realize that we really have to start with the really simple basic thing of getting the plumbing working well.
Because if we’re not getting the plumbing working well and we’re not regulating the bowels, they’re not going to be shifting weight, because it starts to then affect the way that we use our hormones. That toxicity and that inflammation can lead to, as I spoke about, leaky gut, which can interfere with lots of things in the body and create a bit of a resistance to weight loss. While lots of people out there want that instant gratification and the quick fix, the quick weight loss fix, we often need to go back into gut repair and go back into you’re just simply moving the bowels every day, clearing up the toxins so you’re not reabsorbing the hormones and all that sort of stuff. Again, sorry, tangent.
Stu:If we are going every day, what are we aiming for in terms of stool texture, color, type? Because I’m guessing that, that is going to change radically, from person to person and probably from day to day, depending on what we’re eating as well.
Lynda:I think color and also texture and type is really important to just be aware of. I think most people probably don’t look at what comes out of them and I really encourage people to. You don’t need to be so vigilant and doing it every single day but maybe just once a week, just commit to having a bit of a look, seeing if there’s any … Seriously, seeing if there’s any changes. It can be a bit of a window into your current state of health. Going back to what we’re aiming for, what we’re shooting for … Again, no normal’s … the ideal is that you’re solid stool, that just slides out easily, probably like what you experience Stu. Slides out easily, it looks maybe, it’s probably an S or a C shape. There’s no straining, usually. You might be going once or twice a day, generally, about once a day.
Then you might find undigested food particles in stool. That was your ideal, then you look at the … I like … Have you heard of Diane Sanfilippo? The person that wrote the Practical Paleo book, she’s got a great little representation on the ideal stool and everything. She calls it the Poop Pageant and she’s got a great photo. The next level down is the Miss Showoff. She tends to have undigested food in her. What that can indicate … She’s not a solid. What that can indicate is you’re not breaking down foods well. Maybe there’s something going on with low stomach acid. You’d be looking at what’s going on for that person’s digestive processes.
Then there’s what she labels Miss Muscles, the really big stool, the really big poo that’s hard to pass. You’re probably straining. Maybe you’re passing a bit of blood because you’re straining so much, so quite solid. The big, sort of, muscly stool is more if you’re having lots of processed proteins as well or processed … Obviously, not 180 because it’s quite fibrous … processed proteins and processed meats and that sort of stuff. Then if it’s really, really runny, the Miss Swim team, and maybe looks a bit green or a bit yellow. It means that your body is just trying to throw off something. It’s trying to get rid of something really quickly. Also, that might be with certain medications and stuff like that as well. If it’s green or yellow … Color is really important as well because the digestive process is … Sorry, am I losing you guys completely …
Stu:No, no, keep going.
Lynda:… jumping back and forth? When food enters into the body, it’s called chyme. It’s kind of greenish. Then it’s mixed with bile acids and all these sort of things that break it down. That’s like a yellowish sort of color. The bile acids is a bit of a yellowish color and then it’s moved into a state of being a stool and passed from the body and that’s brown. We ideally want it to be brown. If it’s green, your body is just throwing it off really quickly. The transit time from mouth to anus is like out the door.
Stu:What type of color brown, just so people can visualize? Are we talking like a …?
Lynda:Like a medium brown because the other stool is … I mean there’s many types but the other stool is the toxic stool. That’s quite dark and it often sinks to the bottom of the bowl. That could be lots of exposure to environmental toxins, pesticides, plastics, stuff that we use in [crosstalk 00:28:39]
Stu:We’re talking like a chocolate brown? [crosstalk 00:28:43]
Lynda:Yeah, like a …
Lynda:A bit darker than a mouse brown maybe. Maybe a Cadbury chocolate.
Stu:Mice can be gray.
Lynda:They can be, so let’s go with [crosstalk 00:28:57]
Stu:What about white mice?
Lynda:Cadbury dairy milk chocolate.
Stu:There you go. That’s awesome. Cadbury dairy milk chocolate
Stu:Perfect, I can visualize that because sometimes … Again, it’s really hard because you might go to the toilet and you might want to have a look but it’s disappeared, like you might put a few pieces of anti-splash down. I don’t know whether you do that. I always [crosstalk 00:29:20]
Stu:Anti-splash, it’s a couple of pieces of toilet paper so you don’t get splashed when you go to the toilet. Sometimes it will disappear. I remember once I went to visit a friend in Geneva and they had a really unique toiletry system, in that there was a ridge, almost a step, before everything that you’d done got flushed down the pipe and it was really clear, with this step, that you finish and you had a look. For the very first time, I thought, “Wow, look at that. I can see what’s come out of me,” because ordinarily it’s kind of lost in toilet paper. It’s a bit dark down there as well but this one was right up there. I thought that’s kind of different. I can see what I’m doing there.
Guy:Most toilets in Europe are designed that way.
Stu:Yeah, right. Well not over here, right?
Guy:Yeah, not over here or the UK.
Lynda:Whoever created the toilet wasn’t thinking right. Sitting is not the greatest position to be evacuating our bowels, that’s for sure.
Guy:Thomas Crapper, right?
Lynda:No, I think that’s a belief but I don’t know that that’s …
Guy:No, it’s true, it’s true.
Lynda:Yeah, I don’t think that’s accurate. I’d have to look into that one though.
Guy:Ex-plumber here, remember?
Guy:Just to recap, if people are listening to this now and they’re going, “Oh my God, my poo is not …” The things that you’ve just said, are symptoms that are happening. If they’re happening on a regular basis, then I’m guessing you would encourage them to start to investigate further. Because sometimes, you could have a bad meal, the next thing you know it’s gone straight through you, your body is doing its job. It’s eliminating but I’m thinking if it’s consistently over weeks or months then …
Lynda:Yes and I guess the key thing here, aside from just being really aware of what comes out … Again not fixating on it … is look for any changes, changes to smell, changes to color, changes to texture. As I mentioned, if it’s greenish, then it’s passing out through the body really quickly and it might just be food poisoning of some sort. If it’s a yellowish sort of color, and it’s not getting to that brown point, maybe there’s something up with the gallbladder. Maybe you got to look into that. Again, windows to what’s going on inside the body. Again, as you said, it might just be a one off thing so if that’s the case, then just let it be. If it’s a shift and it’s a change from normal [crosstalk 00:31:48]
Guy:I just had this vision of Stu taking photographs each day to do like a catalog for a week and then sending [crosstalk 00:31:53].
Lynda:Instagram post, there you go. There’s your content.
Stu:Ratemypoo.com. It exists.
Guy:For the listeners, what foods would you recommend we eat and avoid, to improve constipation? Are there things that we can proactively do?
Lynda:Absolutely and people are probably very, very aware of what foods to eat to improve constipation because we talk about it quite a bit, but the first one being fiber. We all know that fiber is really important. Why is that important? It’s because it just helps to get poo moving through the intestines well, so eliminated well. It actually helps the musculature. We need intestines to get that peristalsis which is just contractions, the intestine. It helps to move the stool through and so roughage and fiber helps to, I guess, allow the musculature to do its job well. It has something to cling onto.
A stool that doesn’t have a lot of fiber, a fiberless stool, tends to just sit in the colon and absorb a lot of water. It becomes harder to pass. Yeah, so it becomes harder and smaller to pass. It sits in the colon for a little bit longer. It needs that support to move it from the body. The good thing, also, about fiber is that it’s food and nourishment for the bacteria in our gut. Where you can find fiber? There’s many different types. You can find it in berries, for example. We can find it in certain nuts and seeds, things like almonds and pistachios and those sorts of nuts.
Stu:What about regular apples and pears and bananas and stuff like that?
Lynda:Apples and pears have a bit of fiber, for sure, cabbage, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, your cruciferous vegetables. Then you look at things like chia seeds and stuff like that. What I will say about something like chia seeds, they’re like your soluble fibers and they tend to absorb liquid and swell in the body. If you’re not drinking enough water throughout the day, it’s just going to act like glue in your intestines, probably have the opposite effect. I would probably make sure you’re drinking enough water but look at getting your fiber from your plant foods, nuts and seeds and those sorts of things [inaudible 00:34:21] …
Stu:Just an observation …
Lynda:… starch, I forgot to say as well. That’s not the only thing. As part of that, your resistance starch, so basically as the name suggests, it’s starch that’s basically resistant to our human digestion, but it goes into feed our colonic bacteria. You can find resistant starch in green banana, which is basically just raw banana. You can actually get that easily now. I’ve started using Absolute Organics. There’s probably many different brands out there but they’ve got an organic green banana flour which I just add to smoothies.
Guy:Could you just buy green bananas?
Lynda:You could definitely. Absolutely. Every time I say that to people they’re like, “Oh, I don’t know.” You can’t actually taste it in a smoothie and you just need to slice a little bit of it off and then pop it in or slice half of it off and pop it in. You don’t really taste that sort of starchiness, I don’t find. I just find the easiest thing to do is just use green banana flour. There’s also cannellini beans and brown rice but you need to wait for them to cool down in order for them to be a resistant starch and not everyone is that patient.
Stu:If you wanted to block somebody up, what would you prescribe that they eat?
Lynda:Good question. Don’t really talk in the reverse. If I wanted for them to be blocked, I would make sure that they’re really stressed. I would makes sure that maybe their sleeping patterns are out of whack, that they get up straight away and they just run out the door and they don’t have any sort of routine in place. I’d make sure they would just sit down to bacon and eggs, three times a day, with no fibrous veg at all. I’d make sure that they wouldn’t drink any water. Water is so important for just moving things through the colon. Then I’d make sure that their diet was really minimal in healthy fats, because that’s another thing that really supports lubrication and moisture of the intestines.
Healthy fats and by that, I mean, like your oils, your macadamia or your avocado oil, olive oil, butters and your ghee’s, and oily fish and nuts and seeds and that sort of stuff. Our cells and I mean our intestinal cells, as well, are made up of fat, so they actually need fat as a fuel, in order for them to do their job well so I’d make sure that their diet was very, very low in any fats. They could go back to the 80s diet of low fat.
Guy:It’s really interesting, right? Because we grew up on, “You must eat a low fat diet and you must eat your eight serves of grains and wheat a day to get your fiber.” You’ve mentioned everything to the complete opposite, which is what we wholeheartedly believe. Eat plenty of fibrous vegetables, fibrous fruits, a little bit of starch, healthy fats. It’s a huge [inaudible 00:37:26].
Stu:I just want to throw something else into the mix as well. What about those people that have a morning coffee and the reason they have a morning coffee is because it gets their bowels moving?
Lynda:Yeah, what about them?
Stu:Is that a good strategy?
Lynda:I think, psychologically, I wouldn’t want anyone to be dependent on any one thing but look, I don’t mind people sitting down to the ritual of a coffee. I love my long black in the morning because it means that I sit down, maybe I work out what I need to do for the day. It’s just time out, really. For a lot of people, it is that time out for them. Yes, it is a bit of a stimulator as well and people do find that it does help to regulate their bowels. If you were relying on that, then I would have a problem with it. I would also be looking at what you’re putting in it.
Are you putting heaps of sugar and are you putting skim milk and chemicals and other stuff that’s going to inflame the body even more? Yeah, I look … I think that it has its place but I don’t think people should get attached to any which, one thing. Did you want me to kind of continue on with what foods help? Because I feel like I’ve just not done it service.
Stu:I feel like I get the picture so it’s really probably like a protein-carbohydrate dominant, devoid of fats, very little fluid, lack of exercise, movement, quite stressed.
Lynda:What I will mention though, because what people aren’t probably aware of, more so than the fiber and the water and the healthy fats, is that you want to make sure you’re not having excessive protein, particularly if you have sluggish bowels. Why that is, is because as I just spoke about, if you have sluggish bowels, rest assured, you’ve probably got lots of inflammation going on in the body and a bit of toxicity. What happens when we have an excess amount of protein … Which often, lots of us are guilty of doing. I know I am. I love my food. If you’re not moving your bowels, it tends to putrefy, readily, in the bowel, more so than plant foods. I would always err on the side of caution. Always just go for a palm portion of protein. Lots of people do a lot more than that. It’s your palm portion of protein, your thickness of palm [inaudible 00:39:59] and just up the plant fibers.
Because even though we say it, fiber, fiber, fiber, guaranteed, people are not getting their quota of fibrous veg or enough veg in their day, I promise you that. Even though they intellectually know that that helps support bowel movements, they’re probably sitting down to a steak or some sort of protein and then a couple of veg at dinner and maybe some loose-leaf for lunch and whatever it might be.
Guy:Basically when you’re saying eat your veg, literally eat your veg, like eat lots of them.
Lynda:Eat your veg and don’t overcook it. Don’t overcook it. Don’t make it fiberless. Don’t pulverize it into a mush.
Stu:Yeah. Good tips. Good tips. On the subject of tips, I would like you to give us five tips. I’m just thinking, you don’t even have to expand on them. Give me five words that will make us more regular. [crosstalk 00:41:00] What’s number one?
Lynda:Bulk, lubrication, and moisture, so roughage, fiber, lubrication, healthy fats, water and then-
Stu:Fiber, fats …
Stu:… and water.
Lynda:Movement, so movement in the way of yoga, for example, or anything that’s going to encompass breath. If you sit down all day at work, make sure that you just get up, use a standing desk or you just move throughout the day. Your body doesn’t like to be … You’re compressing your abdominal organs when you’re seated but it also … Studies have shown that actually can disrupt the good balance of your gut flora, which supports bowel movements.
Stu:Fiber, fat, water, movement …
Stu:… One more … I’d probably throw …
Lynda:Apple cider vinegar.
Lynda:Yeah, de-stress, sorry. There’s so many. Yeah, de-stress. I do have an article on this. You guys can … I can [crosstalk 00:42:03]
Stu:Oh look, we’ll hit you up for your resources, don’t worry about that. You mentioned … Sorry, Guy. I kind of like interrupting Guy because he’s always hen pecking me. I’ve got one more question and then I’m going to let you [crosstalk 00:42:16]
Guy:It will be too late by then.
Stu:This probably wasn’t working anyway. You mentioned movement and exercise. What type of exercise will be the most beneficial to get my bowels moving? Am I talking high intensity? Should I run a marathon? Should I swing a kettle bell? Should I do yoga? Should I go for a swim or a bike ride?
Lynda:It really depends on what’s driving the constipation for you, I’d have to say. I mean I’m a big fan of yin yoga. Aside from teaching it, I just find that it works for me because it really taps into a few things. It taps into breath work. If no one’s aware of what yin yoga is about, it’s you’re holding a posture anywhere between three to five minutes in a class. You can do it longer if you like. You’re really having to challenge yourself by being still. We’re actually bypassing the muscles and just getting into nourishing the organs. When I look at improving constipation, I look at a yin class that works on the large intestine, which is where we do [inaudible 00:43:18] so the removal of waste and its partner organ is the lungs. Emotionally, in Chinese medicine, it is about being able to express and grieve well.
We all know when we tend to hold onto stuff, or suppress it we literally hold on to shit. You’re literally holding on to shit. It affects your digestive system so a yin yoga or any sort of yoga encompasses breath. Often it encompasses twisting as well, so really stimulates the digestive system. It gets you from a place of that sympathetic nervous system, fight or flight, down into a bit more of a parasympathetic rest and digest. Having said that …
Stu:I was going to say, I truly understand the benefits of yoga and I am respectful of everybody that has embraced yoga, but you lost me at the yoga. I would rather go to the dentist than [crosstalk 00:44:17] pair of hotpants and go rolling around in some yoga studio. For me …
Lynda:I’ll add to that, because that’s not the only thing for sure. I also do [crosstalk 00:44:28]
Stu:What would I do?
Lynda:Aside from yoga, I do tabata training, so in that fifteen minute …
Stu:I like it.
Lynda:For me, it’s high intensity but I’m sure it’s probably not going to be for you. I see that also as just getting my head away from the to do list. It’s a challenge as well for me, so I see it as something exciting and as something new. That also helps to move the body, absolutely. Anything that … It really depends on what’s driving it for you. For me, I find snorkeling meditative because it encompasses breath. I run on adrenals often and so I tend to shallow breathe and that does nothing for your digestion, right? I think something like snorkeling, where you have to focus on the breath, otherwise you’re just going to swallow water. For you it would probably be free diving. That’s a bit meditative for you, but anything that’s just going to support those things.
Breath, so bringing oxygen into the digestive system and calming down the nervous system. Also movement, literally just squeezing and turning and twisting your body and your organs is important. You don’t want to be stagnant. That’s what happens. Your breath … If your breath is stagnant, your body is stagnant. It’s restrictive, it’s constrictive to the [crosstalk 00:45:50].
Guy:I was going to add to this, back then as well, the same thing. Working as a fitness trainer for probably seven years and doing a lot of one on one with PTs, what would happen is when the core went under stress with a heavy load, like with a squat, you’d have to engage the core and the muscles around it. Then quite often, the moment they would start, they’d have to go to the toilet because that load and pressure started the trigger reaction, so weight training is actually beneficial as well.
Stu:Got it. We should take dumb bells into the toilet with us. That’s what you’re saying.
Guy:100%. You could do some squats if you can’t go and then …
Lynda:The key is just move your body and focus on that breath, right? The core is about breath too. The Wim Hof, you know, the breathing technique in the ice baths? Gold, gold for the digestion because the only walk you are able to stay in that ice bath, for fifteen to twenty minutes, is to focus on that breath and bringing it right to that survival mode, like that digestive area. I walk out of that ice bath feeling like, “Wow, okay, I feel like I just brought a year’s worth of breath into my digestive system.” It’s awesome.
Stu:Have you tried wearing a snorkel in the ice bath because that might help you with your breath work as well?
Lynda:Again, a great Instagram shot. I might give it a go.
Stu:Exactly. I’ve tried everything that you’ve told me, right?
Stu:I’m drinking water, I’ve got fiber, I’m moving and I’m mindful. I’m doing everything that you’ve told me, but it’s still not working. It’s not working for me. What do I do? Where do I go?
Lynda:Investigate, investigate, investigate. I think you need someone to help you decipher what’s going on, so whether it’s a naturopath or whether it’s an integrated GP. I do a lot of testing because, for me, it just takes the guess work out of what’s going on for someone. Certain tests that you could do are things like your stool test, so you can see if there’s anything like … Because we didn’t really talk about what often drives constipation but one of those things can be the presence of a pathogen, so a bacteria or a fungus of some sort. Then you can look at, also, the state of your gut flora and the state of your short chain fatty acids, which help to reduce inflammation and all these sorts of things.
Our gut flora is responsible for so many roles in the body, like the metabolic processes, so the way we break down and assimilate used foods but also reducing inflammation, mood health, all those sorts of things in the body. Sorry, total tangent but further testing. That’s all I would say. Further testing. You could even go down the route of doing adrenal cortisol profile, so you can see if what’s driving it, is the stress. If the person needs to see it on paper, that actually your cortisol levels are at its peak at nighttime, when it should be low. Could that be contributing to poor gut health? Could that be contributing to poor sleep and all these things that support …
Guy:Is there a stat out there? How common do you think it is to have poor gut flora and potentially parasites within the gut, with the general public out there?
Lynda:I don’t know of any stats and I haven’t really heavily looked into it but it’s huge. Obviously I see it, day in and day out, because of what I do, but it’s so common. It’s hugely common.
Guy:Yeah. I just want to add in the podcast because obviously you tested me recently …
Guy:.. and I … We do the podcast, we do everything. I’m a fanatic all about health. I am going on a regular basis anyway, so that wasn’t the point, but I was still suspicious something wasn’t quite right. You, after many weeks nagging, got me to do the stool test and I was amazed it came back, you know, all the markers were there that I had poor gut flora. I had [blasto 00:50:14]?
Guy:… which is a parasite or bacteria. I’m not sure.
Lynda:A very resistant parasite, yeah.
Guy:Exactly and there’s me thinking I tick all the boxes, which I do and I practice so, it can happen to anyone and everyone. I’d certainly urge people to at least get it tested once, over the next twelve months or whatever it may be, whether they’ve got symptoms or not. It’s amazing what comes up.
Lynda:For me, it’s the difference between someone saving themselves a hell of a a lot of money … Because what happens is, there’s often two directions. You can go down the detox route, because you’re trying to get rid of a pathogen of some sort, so the money is going towards detoxifying. It’s a process, it can take some time. Or you can go down the route of [inaudible 00:51:02] your short chain fatty acids and your own gut flora is shot like your [inaudible 00:51:09] bacterium, these things that we need is out of whack. We just need to go down the route of nourishing your gut flora and supporting that, instead of you wasting your money on these detox supplements.
I think while the tests actually do have that initial cost, it saves you money long term and like you said, you live a very healthy life, food and lifestyle, but still there’s some things like that are unexplained, that get in the way and it’s just really good to do that investigative work, so you don’t waste time. You can just get on top of it.
Stu:That’s good advice.
Guy:Stu, you’re getting yours tested right?
Lynda:Yes, tell us about your poo story [crosstalk 00:51:50] a bit personal
Stu:As part of what we do, I like to self-test, because I want to know that everything that I’m doing and all of these wonderful things that I’m implementing in my life, are making positive change, so I’ve got a glucose meter which I prod myself with every now and again. I just want to make sure that the foods that I’m consuming aren’t sending my blood sugars haywire. I’ve recently decided to embark on liver testing, gut permeability, for leaky gut, and a full blown stool analysis, not because there’s anything wrong, but because it’s my biyearly checkup. This morning, yes, I did. I had to undergo a stool test so I’ve got the kit at home.
Just so everybody can be aware of what this entails, it’s no big deal but it’s a little comical. I’ve got this box and there are three little tubes in the box that I have to fill up with my poo. Then there as a round plastic dish and a big blue glove. I went into the toilet and of course I’m a little bit worried, first off, about thinking, “Oh God, I’ve got to poo in this dish. I don’t even know if I can go now because I’m getting anxious. Do I have to do this?” I ate a particularly large amount of food yesterday because I thought, “I’m just going to load myself up with food so I can really get these awesome samples.”
Because you’ve got to fill like three of these little pots, so it’s got to be a good poo. I went in there this morning. I told the kids, “Look kids, if you need the toilet, use it now. I’m going to be in here for like ten minutes at least, I’ve got to do some stuff.” “What are you doing dad?” I showed them what I’m doing. I’ve got this crazy blue glove on my hand and reading all the instructions, know what to do. I put loads of toilet paper down and said, “I’m going to catch this thing in this plastic dish.”
Stu:Of course you’re not used to it, so I’m kind of sitting, squatting, got this plastic dish down there and then I just hear this plop and I think, “Oh, I’ve missed the dish.” The things come out and it’s bypassed the dish because I’m not used to trying to catch this thing. I realize, “Oh yeah, I’ve got to pull it back more.” Then luckily there’s more to come and then boom, like comes out great. Then I look down and it’s like all over my hand. It’s not in [inaudible 00:54:27]. Then I’m trying to scoop this thing back into the dish. Then I take the glove off, turn it inside out and try and scoop it into these little containers. I’m shaking containers and doing all this kind of crazy stuff, just laughing to myself.
That, for me, is really, really important. It’s so necessary for me to get a handle on where I am because I’m forty-three, I am now in this band of my life where my hormones aren’t going to fix everything for me. I want to make sure that I’m being as preventative as I can and doing all the right stuff. [crosstalk 00:55:03] I chuck loads of vegetables, like truckloads, I mean truckloads.
Lynda:You are the epitome of health, Stu, I have to say. You do practice what you preach.
Stu:I will let you know. I will let you know. That’s going to be collected today at some stage, hopefully. In three weeks [crosstalk 00:55:19]
Lynda:… the knock on the door while were here but the good thing to point out with that whole process is that, I don’t often elude to the whole process with people. I just say, “Okay, you’re going to receive a stool sample kit. You’re just going to need to take a sample.” You should see some of the mortified faces when I have their follow-up consultation. I don’t see it as a bad thing because, as I was saying to you before, when you’re that up close and personal with your stool, yeah, it stinks and it’s a bit … It feels like, “Oh, this isn’t right.” It’s a part of you. You produced this. It’s something you’ve eliminated. It’s not … I see it as, what’s the worst that can happen from here?
I’m sure you have done that with your children as well, where you’ve had to collect their poo when you’ve kind of … Maybe you or Sara have looked at the poo and gone, “Okay, something is a bit wrong here? Are they sick?”
Lynda:Why not do that as adults?
Stu:I realize with the kids because, obviously, kids just do the most catastrophic stuff in their nappies when they’re young.
Lynda:Unashamably, which is fantastic.
Stu:… but if you can’t smell it, it’s not a problem. My protocol for dealing with the kids when I was younger is, I screwed up toilet paper, dipped it in Old Spice aftershave and shoved it up each nostril. You can clear up anything, anything.
Lynda:Do what they … When we were starting naturopathy, where you have to go to a university where they would show us the cadavers and it would be rank because it would be formaldehyde, the smell of formaldehyde, so we’d have to put Vaseline in our nostrils so that might be something for your …
Stu:Old Spice is more sophisticated.
Lynda:I think so.
Stu:Cool. We got a few wrap up questions Guy and I’m going to push those over to you because I don’t want to [crosstalk 00:57:11]
Guy:I’m sitting back enjoying. It’s all good. We do have a few wrap up questions. The first one is, what did you eat yesterday?
Stu:Yesterday I had … I love my slow cooker by the way. I just have to have it easy in my life. I popped on for dinner, a slow cooked curry chicken casserole with lots of veg and coconut cream. For breakfast, I … It’s pretty much a standard for me … I’m not just saying it because you guys are there … I have a 180 smoothie. What I have in that … I have the vegan one and often I have the Greens Plus in there, because I like my greens but I also add extra greens, so spinach and cucumber and celery are my favorites. I usually have a selection of fruits that I use. I’ll use one at any given time. It will be honeydew melon. It might be an apple. It might be berries. Then I might add resistance starch to it, so the organic banana flour, avocado as well.
Stu:I’ll just throw in that one of the biggest comments that we get about the 180 blends are that they change the way that peoples bowels move for the positive.
Stu:Hell yeah. Hell yeah, for a few reasons. I mean that’s one of the … I love popping patients onto 180 … Again, I’m not just saying that. I wouldn’t put my name behind anything I didn’t believe in … for so many reasons. You’ve got your healthy fats in there. You’ve got your fiber, like the almond skins, the almonds in general, that sort of stuff. You’ve got stuff that nourishes a good flora in there but you’ve got fiber just to dislodge the waste to remove it from the body. Loads of reasons that they … I guess also, when I think about people having a smoothie, I often recommend to jump on and check out some of my smoothie recipes because it’s not enough just to have the smoothie with water.
I really believe that people need to accompany it with some form of fibrous fruits or a bit of grains or some healthy fat, whether it’s coconut cream, whether it’s avocado and that. I feel like it gets people into the habit of not missing out on meals, getting some fiber, getting some healthy fats and it tastes fricking great. It really tastes good and it’s easy. I’m often time poor and I really understand that a lot of my patients are, so it’s got to be easy and for me 180 is so good in so many ways.
Lynda:It doesn’t have any crap added to it, so I love it.
Stu:Excuse the blatant plug but it’s worthy [crosstalk 00:59:53].
Lynda:… mention it, because it’s a big part of my world and truth be known, I was saying to Guy, I wasn’t going to mention it because it makes me sound really lazy. Truth be known, if I’m really busy or I’m working on something, it’s not uncommon for me to have a smoothie for breakfast and a smoothie for lunch. I will just makes sure, for lunch that I just add a shitload of, a lot of vegetables and stuff in there, so I’m kind of getting a bit more. Not that I’m advocating replacing all your meals with smoothies, it’s not what I often do, but if I’m really busy instead of missing out on a meal, and for me to just keep focusing and firing on all cylinders, I’ll just have it because it’s just easy.
Stu:It solves a problem. This is good.
Stu:Next question, what’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Lynda:I kind of keep going back to a quote that I just always think about, especially when I feel a bit silly because I’ve jumped into something, foolishly or that I’ve jumped into the deep end without actually thinking about it. I keep going back to that Steve Jobs quote of “Stay Foolish, Stay Hungry” or “Stay hungry, Stay foolish”, one of those things, because it makes me feel okay about it. It actually … I don’t mind that about myself because it means that, out of my naivete, I just get shit done and I make things happen. Not always right, lots of things fail, but at least I just kind of … I kind of refer to that often because it makes me feel like just be hungry.
If you’re really passionate about … If you like talking about poop, for God’s sake, talk about poop, because you’re going to help someone. Whatever you’re passionate about, you’re going to add value to someone’s life, someone out there because there’s an audience for you somewhere.
Stu:Yeah, absolutely. Trust your gut.
Lynda:Anyways, total tangent.
Guy:No, no it’s perfect, perfect. What have you got coming up? What’s the future hold for you?
Lynda:With the Better Me Tea? Blatant plug for me. I absolutely love it. That’s just taking off as well, so that’s going to continue to do well and I see that being in lots of Wholefoods retail outlets and possibly some beautiful boutique, wholefood cafes. I’m very [crosstalk 01:02:16]
Guy:What’s the … give us the elevated pitch for Better Me Tea. What’s the …?
Stu:I was going to ask her that.
Lynda:You’re probably thinking what the hell is it? Better Me Tea, it’s four organic ingredients, none of which are going to cause dependencies. It doesn’t have things like [senna 01:02:31] in there which are really quite harsh on the gut. It also … As I probably mentioned before with constipation, there’s often digestive symptoms like gas and bloating, so the herbs in there help to reduce gas and bloating along with just helping to move the bowels more regularly. It tastes great, so a part of my every day is having it as an after dinner mint. I kind of have that after dinner. It’s a very big part of my bowel care program as well. I do have a four week bowel care program. That is a part of it, amongst other things. It just helps to reset and reboot the body really.
Guy:For anyone listening to this, regarding the bowel care program, they don’t have to physically see you right? You work remotely.
Lynda:Yes, so I work online. All my consultations are done via Skype and …
Guy:And shit goes in the mail.
Lynda:Shit goes in the mail and so even if you’re in a regional area, there is support. I can help you. Just jump on my website. All the information is there.
Guy:Fantastic, which is?
Lynda:Www.lyndagriparic.com and Instagram same Lynda Griparic. Pretty easy to find that way.
Guy:We’ll link to the show notes as always to everyone when we send this out and thank you. That was amazing.
Lynda:Thank you. Thanks for having me on, appreciate it.
Stu:Lynda, thank you so much. I love talking about this. We had a few laughs but it really is so key to be on top of this kind of stuff because it could be the cornerstone of your health. If this isn’t firing for you, you’ve got to work on it.
Lynda:Absolutely and thanks for being so open and honest about your bowel explosions and [crosstalk 01:04:23]
Guy:It’s the way of the future.
Stu:It is, absolutely.
Stu:Thank you again and we will put everything in the show notes and we’ll blast this out and looking forward to having you on again.
Lynda:Beautiful. Thank you.
Stu:Thank you. Bye-bye.