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705: Too Much Sugar & Glutathione for Brain Health With Dr. Gina Nick

Too Much Sugar & Glutathione for Brain Health with Dr. Gina Nick

705: Too Much Sugar & Glutathione for Brain Health With Dr. Gina Nick


Child: Welcome to my Mommy’s podcast.

This episode is brought to you by Dreamland Baby, which is found at dreamlandbabyco.com. Just a note, the code MAMA20 will save you 20% site-wide and get you free shipping. But if you’re not familiar with this company, I love their story. It started when the founder’s son, Luke, was six months old and still waking up every hour and a half all night. And understandably, the parents were exhausted and desperate for sleep. And they discovered, by putting a heavy throw blanket on him, and it calmed him down, that the same thing that makes weighted blankets amazing for adults also makes them amazing for babies. But to be safe for babies, they realized he needed a wearable weighted sleep solution. And they made it their mission to develop that and make it available for other babies. They’ve now made a deal on Shark Tank, been featured in Forbes, and are sold at retailers all over the country. And they’re most proud to have helped over 500,000 families get more sleep. I love this because this is something that I’ve talked about from an adult perspective, how weighted blankets can help calm the nervous system and improve sleep. And this is now a safe baby option. So like I said, definitely check it out, especially if you have any little ones by going to dreamlandbabyco.com and use the code MAMA20 to save 20% site-wide and get free shipping.

This podcast is sponsored by LMNT. I’ve loved this company for hydration and for electrolytes, and this is something I consume almost every day and also give to my high school kids who are athletes and my younger kids to help keep them hydrated in the hot climate that we live in and with as much activity as we’re doing. And I’m excited to announce that LMNT has made grapefruit one of their permanent options! This used to be a seasonal flavor and it was one of my favorites and now it’s available all the time, anytime of year.
Here’s the thing, optimal health and hydration really depend on minerals.
Did you know that drinking too much plain water without adequately taking our mineral content into account can actually cause us to be less hydrated, even if we’re drinking a lot of water? And that’s why I’ve really delved into the research around minerals and have made this a priority for me. I think this is incredibly important for not just hydration, but for mineral balance, including sleep, including exercise performance, including so much more. LMNT has lots of flavor options for this, including ones that my kids love like watermelon and grapefruit, also citrus, raspberry. They have a whole host of options to help you increase your mineral content and your availability in a delicious way. And you can check out all of their options and get a free sample pack with any order by going to drinklmnt.com/wellnessmama.

Katie: Hello and welcome to this special Halloween episode of the Wellness Mama Podcast where we talk about the problems with too much sugar and the benefits of glutathione, how both of those impact brain health and so much more.

And I’m here with a friend of mine, Dr. Gina Nick, who is the founder of Apothicaire, which is a world, she’s also a world renowned naturopathic physician, researcher and formulator based in California. I got to meet her recently and we got to talk in depth about glutathione and some really fun formulations that she’s working on creating that are clinically studied to actually improve levels of important things in the body, especially glutathione.

So we go deep on that. We talk about the real deal with what’s going on with sugar consumption and why, especially this time of year, this is such an important topic to talk about how to guard against and undo the damage of not just sugar consumption, but exposure to other stressors on the body as well. And we just get to have just a fun conversation. And if you’re watching this video, we are both in Halloween costumes. If you happen to check it out on YouTube or social, you can see that as well. But please enjoy this short and fun and very informative conversation with Dr. Gina Nick. Dr. Gina, welcome. I’m so excited we get to chat today.

Gina: I’m so excited to be chatting with you. Thanks for having me on your podcast.

Katie: Oh, it’s an honor. We got to meet in real life recently and I knew immediately I’d want to have you on the podcast and also just be friends with you. And for people who are watching, I don’t know, a lot of people just listen, but the videos also make it to YouTube. So for anyone watching, we’re both in costume today because this episode is airing on Halloween. And I felt like a really great jumping in point for a Halloween conversation was going to be to get on the soapbox a little about sugar because certainly sugar consumption ramps up not just with Halloween, but this whole time of year, kind of like October through New Year’s, is a massive sugar consumption time.

And I know you’ve done a ton of research and worked with a ton of people on many areas of health, but I thought let’s focus on sugar as the background point for jumping in today. So to start off, can you give us some primer in what’s going on with our sugar consumption and what’s going wrong with it?

Gina: So, a lot of people, everybody knows sugar is not good for you. Don’t give your kids sugar, but we all do. Grandparents are notorious for giving their grandkids sugar. And you think, well, why? Like, why? Why is it so, why is that the norm? And sugar electrifies the brain and it activates the opioid system in the brain and it gives you a high. It makes you feel happy and good in the short term. You know, and so of course kids will associate hanging out with grandma and grandpa and feeling really good. So what’s wrong with that? You know, you think that’s pretty innocent and there’s no issue there.

The challenge is long-term. We know that too much sugar, refined sugar, in the body causes inflammation in the brain. And causes long-term health issues that aren’t easily reversible, takes a long time. And so in moderation, sugar is, can be okay, but these days we consume more sugar than ever before. And there’s the World Health Organization will say, well, about 25 grams of sugar a day is fine, but if you look at one, a drink of Coke is 44 grams of sugar, you know? And so, and then you multiply that out based on what kids are actually drinking and consuming on a day-to-day basis.

And then you bring a holiday like Halloween into the picture. And the average consumption for kids is three cups of sugar on Halloween. And that causes damage to the brain, just as a healthcare practitioner will say, “straight up, we talk about how sugar can increase risk for heart disease and lower immune function and so forth”. There isn’t a lot of talk about what it actually is doing and the harm it’s causing to developing child’s brain. And so it is, sugar can be highly addictive and it can have a similar impact to drugs.

Sugar is a drug. And we need to treat it as such. And so, and these days, there’s something called a Rainbow fentanyl. Have you heard of that? So Rainbow fentanyl is 50 times more potent than heroin. 100 times more potent than morphine. And it’s made to look like candy. And so it’s been found, a lot has been found in bags of Skittles and Whoppers and Sweetarts. You know, and so it’s a pretty serious situation. This is happening right now. So we don’t, you know, is there fentanyl in that bag of Skittles that our kid is getting on Halloween and opening up and eating, you know?

And so I don’t want to be like Debbie Downer on Halloween cause Halloween’s fun and we get to get dressed up and look amazing like Katie looks, you know? And our kids get to have fun and trick-or-treating or and that’s all very positive. But it’s almost, you know, it is a life or death situation. What if one of our kids opens up that bag of Skittles and there’s Rainbow fentanyl in there? Which is a very real issue happening today. And so I just feel like it needs to be emphasized in parents.

We’re all so busy and there’s so many stresses in life. And we’re just trying to make our kids do well in school and just be happy and have fun on a holiday like Halloween because there is so much stress in the world. And it’s just a time to relax. But this is serious and our children are at risk. So we need to find other solutions to where we can celebrate the holiday and it can be amazing without risking our kids’ health, not only from just excess consumption of sugar on Halloween and post-Halloween all the way through Christmas, but also looking at the risk of being exposed to drugs that can kill and so, it’s a serious issue.

I was looking at some statistics about how much money is spent on Halloween. $2.6 billion are spent in the US on purchasing candy just on Halloween. So it’s a huge industry. And so I would love to talk about, and I know you have a lot of solutions because you have many kids, on what to do, realistically, as a mom. How do you handle it? Right? And so I’d love to share some of my tips and hear what yours are as well.

Katie: Yeah. Well, and to your point, unfortunately, this is not just an isolated day. It would be one thing if it were truly actually only one day a year that kids were eating an insane amount of sugar. It still wouldn’t be good for them, but at least it would be an acute thing that their body could hopefully process and they might feel really bad for a couple of days, but it would be acute.

And instead, this has become so pervasive in our society where sugar is almost a constant with kids at birthday parties, at school, anywhere they sugar hits. And like you said with the statistics, I didn’t realize it was that high of three cups of sugar on Halloween, but I know I’ve seen varying statistics of how many literally hundreds of pounds of sugar people eat, each person eats in a given year. And that’s really staggering, especially when we’re talking about our kids, because like you said, in moderation, the body has mechanisms for this where we can handle carbohydrates, but we now have these hyper-refined substances that didn’t used to exist in our diet that do interact with the body as drugs, even if the kids hopefully are not encountering the much more dangerous versions of drugs that are hiding in sugar. But sugar on its own has a drug-like interaction with the brain, especially in kids.

And from what I’ve read, especially when you combine it with things like food dyes, and especially when it’s in big amounts, and especially when it’s in a developing brain, the impact is much, much bigger. So I would love to talk about some practical strategies. I know you have a daughter as well and that you’re probably like very careful of guiding her in great directions with this while also not like iron fist restricting her life such that she creates forbidden things with food. And that’s something I think about often as well. So I’ll share some of mine also, but I would love to hear your strategies for keeping the fun of celebrations and holidays without it always being focused on sugar.

Gina: Yeah, well for Halloween, I was talking to Pedram of Urban Monk yesterday, and we both have a technique of, and you probably do too, where for my daughter, she’ll bring all the candy home and then we’ll swap it out, and she’ll get to pick out something really awesome that she wants. And I’m totally okay with that because I know the long-term impact that just consuming that sugar that one day has on her health and wellbeing and now with the risks of drugs, etc.

So I’ll just do, we’ll do a swap out, so she’ll get something even better than that bag of candy. That’s a simple, easy thing. When I’m giving out treats for trick-or-treaters, I’ll just do like I have these little cute pumpkins and they’ll have little treats in there that aren’t sugar, like little spider rings and tattoos and temporary tattoos and things like that, that are fun and I’ll pick out some low sugar. There are some pretty good low sugar candies on the market these days. We do live in a time where we have a lot more options than parents did 50 years ago. And so I’ll intermix fun toys with low sugar candies as well.

And then another thing I’ve been trying to teach my own daughter and I tried to teach my patients to share with their kids is when they asked for that Twix candy bar. Rather than just saying, Gabby, my daughter will say, “hey, can I have this?” And I’ll say, “well, I want you to decide”. You know, you’ve got me as a mom, so yes, you’re pretty well educated on the impact of sugar and dyes and all of that, but you’re still a kid. And you still have all the influence of everybody else around you eating these things. And so you’re aware of what it can do to your body, but you also know in moderation, it’s okay. It’s not going, you know, it’s not that horrible.

And so I’m guiding her to decide for herself. What is best for her body and really start to get in touch. She’s 11, so get in touch with what, what does she feel is best for her versus asking mom if she can or can’t have it. So I’m putting the responsibility back on her because ultimately we’re all responsible for our own health. And I’m trying to convey that at a young age. So that that develops over time.

Katie: I think that’s so important. One of my first principles with my kids is that they are each their own infinite autonomous being. And of course, when they’re young, we do have to be very hands-on with taking care of them and make many decisions for them when they’re especially babies.

But I think like you explained so beautifully, whenever we’re able to give them the decision-making, first of all, they often can surprise us. Because they’re so capable of understanding and making good decisions and they’re resilient. So if they’re 90% of the time making great choices, it’s truly not the end of the world if they choose to eat that candy once in a while. But I feel like that mindset of them getting to choose from an early age is so important because we’re not always going to be there. And one day they are going to be interacting with the world without our advice and guidance on every decision. And so the earlier they get to have ownership of that decision and really like feel the effects and own it themselves, I feel like that’s such a healthy framework for moving into adulthood too.

Gina: Yeah, yeah. I mean, kids are responsible. They are ultimately responsible for their, you know, health and wellbeing, or at least that’s, you know, we want to convey that to kids so that eventually that clicks. And they do take, you know, I wish more adults would take, truly take responsibility for their own health, you know, and do their best to stay connected with their own bodies to decide what are the best foods to eat, how much sugar is okay or not okay for my body and my brain, you know, because those things change over time.

Katie: Yeah. And I think there’s also value like how you do and I do as well in not making anything totally forbidden ever other than of course the things we truly do have to keep them safe from. But as a silly example of that, I think back to not being allowed to get my ears pierced until I was 13 and then wanting a second piercing and my parents wouldn’t let me. And so when I turned 18, I at one point had like 33 piercings because it was a forbidden thing. And when I look back, I’m like, those didn’t even feel good. It was hard to sleep for like six months because my ears were swollen. Like I didn’t actually probably want those. They became attractive because they were forbidden.

And so I’ve tried with my kids never to like even paint the picture as like good and bad or forbidden or you can’t, but to just like you to educate them about it and trust they really are so capable of understanding at such a young age. We also do the switch, which and trade out for something that’s a not processed sugar alternative on Halloween.

And I think really the fun of it often is the time with friends, the dressing up, the walking around, which is actually a great part of Halloween if they’re walking around neighborhoods and getting some movement in. And also if it were able in our own communities to focus on those parts, like our neighborhood usually has like a little party in the circle at the middle of the neighborhood and there’s healthy treats out like vegetables, fruits, protein sources, and the kids all get to play and there’s music and then they walk around and trick-or-treat. But the focus is the community, not the sugar. And I think anytime we can build that into that’s such a powerful strategy.

Gina: Yeah, that’s a healthier way to get that high, right? Is having community and feeling connected to one another. I mean, that’s going to give you that, a genuine high versus the false high of taking in sugar and it electrifying your brain and you feel great for 30 minutes and then you crash. And then you’ve got this inflammatory process happening, which is what’s happening, you know?

And now, I mean, because of COVID, I mean, COVID really triggered this issue of chronic inflammation in the body and I see it all the time in my practice. And I just feel like kids are even more vulnerable to this inflammation that’s happening because of exposure to COVID and stresses in our world today. And with their developing brain, that’s where we really do need to be more mindful of what are they taking in that can activate an even greater inflammatory response that can cause things like attention deficit disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, addictive behaviors beyond sugar. So yeah, emphasizing I’m a big proponent for encouraging community and connection, and because that’s what we’re lacking these days. And really is, it’s my truth that that really is an important solution to treating some of the health conditions that we’re seeing. In our country, in our world.

Katie: I fully agree. And I think the brain piece is so key as well, because I saw one time brain scans of people who were on a lot of sugar, and they were very similar to people who were on cocaine because of the brain changes that happened in the brain. And so I think certainly, again, the dose makes the poison, but when kids are chronically over consuming sugar, it is affecting their brains.

It’s also affecting their livers. And we’re seeing the rise of things like non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, even in children. We’re of course seeing chronic health conditions on the rise across the board in all age groups. And so this is seemingly an increasingly important problem and one that doesn’t seem like we have figured out how to solve as of yet. So I love that you’re educating on this and it looks like you want to say something else too.

Gina: I’m just thinking about the packaged foods that are marketed to kids and the amount of sugar that’s in them. And now we know there’s, there’s over 264 different ways to say sugar on a label. Right? So it might not just the label, when you’re looking at buying foods for your children and for yourself, you might not see sugar on the label but doesn’t mean that sugar’s not in there. High fructose corn syrup. There’s even things like agave syrup, it’s still sugar. Right. And so just being aware of the fact that most processed foods and packaged foods have some sugar in there, even if it’s not labeled as such, or you don’t recognize the name for it.

So that just getting, I think now more than ever, it’s important to get away as much as possible from packaged and processed foods and just really get back to basics whole foods, ideally locally grown, just moving back in that direction one step at a time. And it’s one of those things where we all have so much on our plates these days, and it’s cost benefit analysis, how worth it is it to put that effort in to help my child or children move away from a high sugar diet. And that’s where I’m saying it really is worth it for now and long term, so that we have clear thinking kids making decisions in our world moving forward.

Katie: Absolutely. And on the brain health side, especially, I know that you have done actually a whole lot of things in the research side and the clinical side and in really researching not just how sugar impacts our bodies, but how many, many things do and finding those cost-effective and cost-benefit analysis solutions that can really help. And we got to bond because we were talking about glutathione at a recent event. And it seems like there’s a lot of data here as well and just how sugar can be harmful to the brain. There are things that are phenomenal for the brain and for the body in a lot of ways. And I also love to highlight the part that even if someone has had health issues in the past or has over consumed sugar, the body is also incredibly adaptable and resilient. And the beauty is it wants to move toward healing. So even if you’ve experienced those things, almost always there’s things you can do that will help the body then move in a positive direction and feel better and undo a lot of that damage. So all is certainly not lost, even if kids have eaten tons of sugar.

But I would love to shift the conversation a little bit into solutions on a more biological level as well and delve into some of the work that you’ve done on this. I know you even have some cool products that give a lot of the fun experience of something like a treat, but with only benefits. So talk about from your research and your clinical experience, what are some of the things that we can do that are supportive once we avoid the sugar?

Gina: Yeah, so one of my favorite ingredients is glutathione. There are over 100,000 clinical research studies on the power of glutathione to lower inflammation in the brain, help with addictive type behaviors, support immune function, detox the liver. You’re talking about liver health and sugar, balance hormone levels. And so glutathione is, it’s considered the mother of all antioxidants. So it helps to neutralize free radicals, toxins from our environment, from our foods, from consuming too much sugar.

And so it’s one of, it’s called a Tripeptide. So it’s just a combination of three amino acids naturally occurring in the body. But when we’re exposed to a lot of stress, and inflammation and exposed to viruses and bacteria and mold and all these issues that are up now, glutathione really helps to counteract those things in a natural way and our body’s demand for glutathione is higher now than ever before.

And one of the things I really like about this ingredient is it crosses the blood-brain barrier. And so it has a profound impact on the brain. And the brain is very sensitive to toxins. It’s very sensitive to sugar, it’s very sensitive to drugs, it’s very sensitive to most to toxins, and there isn’t a high amount of glutathione in the brain. So when your own natural sources get depleted, it makes your brain even more vulnerable to those toxins. And that’s where introducing glutathione into your body can have just an incredible effect.

I’ve been using it in my practice for over 20 years. And so I’m very passionate about this particular ingredient. And I’ve formulated supplements for a very, very long time. And when people ask me if I can just take one thing, I don’t want to take all these other things, if I could just take one thing, what would it be? And that’s when I’ve really sat down with that. It would be glutathione. That’s the, if I could only, there’s a lot of things I would recommend people take, but it would be the most important.

And when it relates to things like Halloween and sugar consumption, glutathione is just a real powerful counter to that. And it is so healing to the body. So when you’re talking about how the body has the ability to heal itself, your body’s amazed. I mean, it’s amazing. It’s always trying to get back to a state of homeostasis or balance. And it is very resilient. And so no matter what the assaults have been or how many unintelligent mistakes we all make, right? When it comes to our own health and wellbeing, that’s okay because the body’s always trying to get back to balance.

So I’m a fan of give the body what it needs. Give your body what it needs so it can do its job and get you to where you want to be. And so glutathione’s one of those things that I feel is necessary. To take, I recommend on a daily basis at a low dose to support overall health and wellbeing. And just, I mean, the results in patients, it’s just amazing. It’s a very, very powerful ingredient.

Katie: Yeah. Well, like you said too, all those things like sugar, like exposure to toxins, whatever it may be, they are an assault on the body that can deplete a lot of things, but among them glutathione levels. And I’ve always thought it’s funny that we assume that like cold and flu season, it’s just like all these viruses just go latent in the summer and then they just wake back up in the winter. And also all of these things change in that season of the fall, like we talked about even just with sugar, where we’re not getting as much sunlight, sleep patterns change. And I would guess glutathione levels because of those are also down at that time of year.

This episode is brought to you by Dreamland Baby, which is found at dreamlandbabyco.com. Just a note, the code MAMA20 will save you 20% site-wide and get you free shipping. But if you’re not familiar with this company, I love their story. It started when the founder’s son, Luke, was six months old and still waking up every hour and a half all night. And understandably, the parents were exhausted and desperate for sleep. And they discovered, by putting a heavy throw blanket on him, and it calmed him down, that the same thing that makes weighted blankets amazing for adults also makes them amazing for babies. But to be safe for babies, they realized he needed a wearable weighted sleep solution. And they made it their mission to develop that and make it available for other babies. They’ve now made a deal on Shark Tank, been featured in Forbes, and are sold at retailers all over the country. And they’re most proud to have helped over 500,000 families get more sleep. I love this because this is something that I’ve talked about from an adult perspective, how weighted blankets can help calm the nervous system and improve sleep. And this is now a safe baby option. So like I said, definitely check it out, especially if you have any little ones by going to dreamlandbabyco.com and use the code MAMA20 to save 20% site-wide and get free shipping.

This podcast is sponsored by LMNT. I’ve loved this company for hydration and for electrolytes, and this is something I consume almost every day and also give to my high school kids who are athletes and my younger kids to help keep them hydrated in the hot climate that we live in and with as much activity as we’re doing. And I’m excited to announce that LMNT has made grapefruit one of their permanent options! This used to be a seasonal flavor and it was one of my favorites and now it’s available all the time, anytime of year.
Here’s the thing, optimal health and hydration really depend on minerals.
Did you know that drinking too much plain water without adequately taking our mineral content into account can actually cause us to be less hydrated, even if we’re drinking a lot of water? And that’s why I’ve really delved into the research around minerals and have made this a priority for me. I think this is incredibly important for not just hydration, but for mineral balance, including sleep, including exercise performance, including so much more. LMNT has lots of flavor options for this, including ones that my kids love like watermelon and grapefruit, also citrus, raspberry. They have a whole host of options to help you increase your mineral content and your availability in a delicious way. And you can check out all of their options and get a free sample pack with any order by going to drinklmnt.com/wellnessmama.

And it seems like at least the studies I’ve seen top level, glutathione plays a big key in, of course, brain health, but also immune system health. And so this time of year, I feel like that’s an especially important focus.

I’d love to delve into the nuance of glutathione, because perhaps people have heard about different forms of glutathione or gotten a glutathione IV or think that it has to be liposomal format. So I would love for you to unpack for us a little of the different forms of glutathione and why an oral one can be really, really effective over the long term.

Gina: Yeah, I’ve used all forms of glutathione over the years in my practice. And so there’s some controversy about the use of, we’ll start with IV, the most, where you’d get the highest dose in the shortest amount of time. And so with IV glutathione, there is some controversy or question about when you’re taking that much glutathione in at one time, how much is truly getting absorbed into the bloodstream, into the red blood cells, into the muscle tissue, into the brain, because glutathione is under tight homeostatic control. So your body’s really smart and it has these tight regulations. If you get too much glutathione, your body’s going to reject it. And if you don’t have enough, you don’t have enough, you need more. And so more isn’t always better. Even though glutathione is amazing, you don’t need too much to have an amazing effect on the body. And so IV glutathione, in certain situations I can see as valuable, but not for the masses and not on a regular basis.

There’s also intramuscular injections of glutathione and I do those in my practice as well. And again, those are in certain situations can be highly effective and valuable. Not everybody wants to get a shot. They can be expensive and not everybody needs them. And so that’s one form.

And then with oral glutathione, it’s not always stable. So there’s an issue about if you take glutathione in a capsule form, a powdered form, a liposomal form, how much of it is really getting absorbed. And so over the years, what I have learned is one of the best ways has been liposomal delivery vehicles for glutathione. The challenge is compliance. I couldn’t get my patients to stay on it. I couldn’t keep taking it because I didn’t, it just didn’t taste good to me. And most patients, it just, the palatability isn’t there. And that’s been the main issue.

And so during COVID, while I’m homeschooling and doing all the things and trying to see patients and everything, I was doing a lot of research on glutathione and I was like, and I know that glutathione prevents a severe reaction to COVID and helps with inflammation and all these things. And so I put together a formula and it was almost like divinely inspired because it was right off the bat. And I put this formula together. I was working with a company doing research on a particular form of glutathione. That is an oral form and was proven to boost blood levels and red blood cell levels, even though it was an oral form, but not liposomal. So I took that ingredient, I created a formula and the first sample came in and it tasted amazing. No sugar, very, very clean formula, but it tastes great.

And so I decided to put that into a package that mimics candy to counter so that my own child would want to take it and it tastes good. And I know that she’s getting the glutathione that her body needs on a regular basis. So that was the start of this whole project of creating this product. I had it in capsule form already, but came out with a powdered form that tastes really good. And so here we are, launching it on Halloween.

Katie: I love that because I got to try, I believe your other formula that’s a Pixy Stix and I love it because it’s, I love sour things too and it has this like amazing sweet and sour flavor. And so that was to me really fun. And like you said with compliance, even for adults, that’s an issue. But certainly for kids, a lot of kids don’t like to swallow pills, don’t certainly like strong taste. I can’t imagine my kids liking liposomal glutathione as a supplement that they would take. So I feel like anything we can do that makes that experience easier to comply and fun for kids especially is awesome. And I love that you’re releasing it on Halloween too.

Gina: I mean, fun and I wanted it to be fun and taste good, most importantly, but also be really good for you and gently counter the impact that sugar is having on all of our bodies, right? So that’s the idea. And I wanted it to be something that could go in a lunchbox and actually be taken, right? Cause most supplements we know as moms, it’s not the easiest thing to get our kids to take supplements, right? So this is easy cause it tastes good, tastes like candy without the harmful side effects.

Katie: Yeah, I love that. And if I’m remembering some of the other ingredients are also beneficial in their own right, or at least a couple of them that you mentioned, I believe it was like Vitamin C and glycine.

Gina: Yeah, yeah, so there’s, I have a couple formulas. One formula has vitamin C and glycine in it. Vitamin C and glutathione work together, so they help to boost one another in the body. So they’re intimately connected. Vitamin C is another very powerful antioxidant that supports immune function as well. And in fact, sugar competes with vitamin C for binding sites. So when you eat sugar, your body’s ability to absorb vitamin C goes down. And so this formula has vitamin C, glutathione, and then glycine is very important for, it has a sweetness to it. It’s actually one of the main sweeteners in this formula, but it also feeds the good bacteria in your gut. That’s a whole other discussion about the impact sugar has on the gut microbiome and how that impacts the brain as well, right?

And so glycine was included in there for that reason. It also has a calming effect and it can encounter some of the excitatory impact of sugar on the body by taking glycine. It really does have that calming effect. It’s amazing. And so that’s one formula.

And then we have another formula, it’s called So Guaded, and it’s an immune formula, also in that candy-like format. And that has Magnesium glycinate in it as well. And Magnesium is really important for countering the effects of sugar and helping to have that calm feeling. And then it has the vitamin C, glutathione, vitamin D3. We’ve all heard about really important for immune function and then zinc as well. And that’s the so guarded formula. And that’s the one that we’re really encouraging kids and parents to take during this season, Halloween all the way through the New year.

Katie: And for anyone who hasn’t tried it, I’m a big fan of glycine after trying it for sleep. I actually take glycine and nystatin and Magnesium. I end up taking them during the day, not close to bedtime, because I have some weird genes related to Magnesium and it keeps me awake. But when I get enough of those three, I find I sleep really, really well.

Gina: Yeah, they have a really nice calming effect on the body and can even help to manage addictive challenges that some people have. So can help with that addiction, you know, sugar, it’s easy to get addicted to it. So taking some of those nutrients can rebalance how the brain is working. And get it to a point where you’re not as attracted to things that cause you harm.

Katie: Yeah, that’s definitely a helpful step. And I know your experience is very far ranging beyond even just glutathione and sugar and brain health and all the things we’ve already talked about. So I have a feeling we will get to do more episodes in the future that dive deep on many topics. But for today, I would love to hear if there are any other things that are in your own personal 80/20 repertoire of things that you do very consistently or regularly that you feel like have the biggest bang for your buck for your own health or for your daughter.

Gina: Well, yeah, I mean, beyond we both take glutathione daily. One of the things that I really, and I don’t do it every day, but I need to, and I go through phases, but my goal is to really do this daily, is getting in the water. So taking a bath or getting in the hot tub or doing a cold plunge. We’ve got these trillion cells in our body and they respond to water. And so if you, for me, if I’m wanting to meditate or just take a pause and get clear and focused and zoned in to what’s important for me and my day, getting in the water, even if it’s for 10 minutes every morning or every evening, that’s been, it’s been something I’ve done throughout my adult life, you know? And again, I always know when I’m out of balance, when I’m not getting in the water. So I would say that’s a big one. And even for my daughter, if she’s having a difficult day, it’ll often be like, “go take a bath”. And it’s amazing that simple step, just getting in the water, how it can really change things.

Katie: I love that. That’s a great tip. And of course, I will link to all the products we’ve mentioned in the show notes for everybody listening as well as to your website, because I know you also have a lot of educational content and even work with people directly. I don’t know if you’re taking new patients, but I’ll make sure all those resources are available for you guys listening on the go. Everything’s always at wellnessmama.com.

Gina: Thank you. Thank you, Katie.

Katie: And a couple last questions I love to ask toward the end of interviews. The first being if there’s a book or number of books that have had a profound impact on you personally, and if so, what they are and why.

Gina: You know, the one book that has had the most profound impact on me is, it’s not a popular book, but it’s called The Mind of the Cells by Satprem. And it really opened my eyes to what our cells are really doing and that they each have a mind and they are thinking living things within our body. And so that book, The Mind of the Cells, it’s not necessarily an easy read, but it’s worth it to delve into what happens as your cells are evolving and the importance of taking command and taking a leadership role over our own bodies and those trillions of cells and leading them in towards the path of health and wellbeing and fulfilling your purposes. So that’s the most. Yeah, that’s the most impactful book that I’ve ever read. And I still go back in and reread.

Katie: Awesome. I’ll link to that as well. That’s a new recommendation and that’s very much a selfish question on my part to get new book recommendations. So thank you for that.

Gina: And you can even like, it’s, you can download it as a PDF for free.

Katie: Oh, awesome. I’ll see if I can find a link for that to include as well. And lastly, are there any parting advice for the listeners today that could be related to everything we’ve talked about or entirely unrelated life advice that has been helpful for you?

Gina: You know, try and keep it simple, right? Keep it simple. And so, and again, with the sugar issue, it’s taking the time to make steps towards, pulling sugar away from day-to-day life, high volumes of sugar, it’s worth it. That’s like a, it’s one of those simple truths in life, especially today is to is to really address that issue. It’s worth the time and the effort and, and all of that. It’s life changing.

Katie: I appreciate that so much. And I am grateful for you taking the time in us getting to find it like last minute time to record to get this out for Halloween. I’m excited this is a fun and special Halloween episode. And I’m so grateful that I met you and that we got to connect and for you sharing all your wisdom today. So thank you for being here.

Gina: And thank you for what you’re doing. And it’s been an honor and pleasure to talk to you this morning.

Katie: And thanks as always to all of you for listening and sharing your most valuable resources, your time, your energy, and your attention with us today. We’re both so grateful that you did, and I hope that you will join me again on the next episode of the The Wellness Mama Podcast.

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



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