In this episode I talk with Nick Pineault, an investigative health journalist, educator and advocate for safe technologies and author of The Non-Tinfoil Guide to EMFs. We go in deep on:

  1. What EMFs are
  2. How EMFs are affecting our health like our energy, sleep and much, much more
  3. How to protect ourselves

Subscribe to Wellness Recharge

 

Tune in and listen to these take-aways you don’t want to miss: 

  • [1:44] What EMFs are
  • [3:23] The difference between natural EMFs and unnatural ones
  • [4:58] How EMFs can be linked to cancer
  • [6:28] What EMFs are doing to your body
  • [9:46] How EMFs are influencing your hormones
  • [15:54] Why you need to take EMFs seriously if your health is already compromised
  • [22:31] The startling findings of a French smartphone study
  • [25:40] The best ways to protect yourself from EMFs
  • [31:03] What you can do about EMFs on a larger scale
  • [34:16] How Nick, as a type-a person, used his intuition to unblock his creativity

Resources Mentioned:

  1. Safe Sleeve
  1. Environmental Health Trust 
  1. BONUS GUIDE: 3 Ways To Use Your Phone Without Zapping Your Health

My Top Wellness Books

World Book Day is this Monday and I could not resist sharing some of my favorite books on health and wellness with you. I have to admit I’ve always been a book junkie. I love curling up with a good book. I can be reading anywhere from one to three books a week.

 

If you’re interested in picking up a book to do a deeper dive into improving your health and wellness here are some books to check out:

 

  1. Dirty Genes by Dr. Ben Lynch. A great read. I gobbled this one up in a day. The great thing about the genes he talks about is how we can clean them up and get them functioning better to relieve a lot of symptoms and/or health issues we may be experiencing.

 

 

  1. Food: What the Heck Should I Eat? by Dr. Mark Hyman. Dr. Hyman does it again with yet another best-selling book. He gives a really good general account of what you should be eating and dispels many misleading myths in the food industry.

 

  1. No Grain No Pain: A 30-Day Diet for Eliminating the Root Cause of Chronic Pain by Dr. Peter Osborne. This was a game-changing book for me. If you want to learn more about gluten and gluten sensitivity and how it’s affecting you this is a must-read.

 

  1. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. Did you know clutter can stress you out and affect your health? I used this guide to do a serious tidy up in our apartment and my mom’s house. If you need some relief from clutter this is the book for you.

 

3 Ways to Meditate Without Meditating

Too busy in your day to meditate? I hear you. When we have a lot on our plate or something disrupts our routine a meditation class or practice can easily go by the way side. Or you may have never practiced it in the first place and that’s fine.

Here are 3 simple, easy techniques that can give you the same great benefits of meditation like improved concentration, more energy and increased happiness without really doing it.

 

  1. Breathe gently and slowly through your nose.

 

Sounds counterintuitive right? It is not uncommon to be told to breathe deeply and especially through your mouth. However, mouth breathing and deep breathing aren’t the answers. In fact, according to Patrick McKeown, author of The Oxygen Advantage, breathing through the mouth using just the upper chest increases our flight or fight response and makes us more agitated and stressed.

 

Focus on breathing through your nose gently instead. Try this:

  1. Place one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest.
  2. Focus on the airflow in and out of your nose. No need to force your breathing or count the number of seconds.
  3. Aim for gentle, slow breathing.
  4. Slow it down to the point where you feel air hunger because air hunger signifies that CO2 has increased in the blood, which is actually a good thing.

The body breathes to get rid of excess CO2 so the air hunger you feel when you do this exercise doesn’t mean your oxygen levels have dropped. When you work on slowing down your breathing, CO2 increases in the blood and your blood vessels open up, making you feel warmer.

 

When to do it: in front of the TV, in the shower.

 

  1. Use Becalm Balls.

 

These little squishy balls called Becalm Balls are based on carniosacral therapy – a technique used to improve the functioning of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord.

 

The balls induce something called a “stillpoint”. A stillpoint essentially shuts off your body’s response to stress. Your central nervous system and its fluids switch to a state of calmness from its usual state of alertness. It also helps ease muscle tension and helps improve the functioning of your nervous system.

 

When to do it: in the morning when you hit snooze or right before you go to bed. Just place the balls under your head at the same level as your eyes. You can start slow by just using it for 3-5 minutes a day and work yourself up to more if need be.

 

  1. Unleash the power of prayer.

 

Spiritual meditation meaning prayer was actually found to be more effective than secular meditation, according to a study done by Wachholtz and Pargament at Bowling Green State University. They found that the group who practiced spiritual meditation had greater decreases in anxiety and more positive mood, spiritual health, and spiritual experiences.

 

Say a simple prayer out loud, in your head or anyway you want to do it. You can ask for help, healing, happiness or more health in your life. Anyone can do it regardless of your background or beliefs.

 

When to do it: in the elevator, on your commute to work, in front of your computer- any time of day works.

 

If you’re interested in learning more ways to relax download your free guide “7 Quick & Easy Ways to Relax” here.

What You Can Learn From My Health Journey

This past year has been a big year for me especially healthwise. I’ve been missing in action and for good reason.

 

I’m all about eating healthy and leading a healthy lifestyle. I eat a lot of organic foods and a lot of veggies. I meditate and manage my stress well. Sleep is a huge priority for me. Yet I felt something was off and what I was already doing was not enough. Little signs cropped up that made me think there was more to it.

 

Signs like feeling tired for no real reason. I thought I just needed to slow down. I only wrote a few pages a day for my upcoming book and limited my speaking engagements. But that still wore me out. Not normal.

 

I needed to dig deeper. I started first by getting my gut tested. I also got tested for toxins, heavy metals and mineral deficiencies. My tests revealed A LOT. I found out I have:

 

  • A gluten sensitivity
  • SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth)
  • Copper toxicity
  • Arsenic (it can be found in our drinking water and rice. Eating brown rice was a daily must for me)
  • Mercury (I love sushi so I’m not surprised. Even eating wild caught fish doesn’t help)
  • Severe mineral deficiencies for zinc, potassium, sodium, and magnesium to name a few. (My blood test only showed low zinc)

 

In short, my energy levels were like a car with its tires stuck in the mud. I was stuck.

 

To say the least my health was a hot mess. Healing has become my #1 priority. I’m following a protocol designed especially for my unique needs right now. It’s a journey. Being healthy is a lifelong journey, not a destination where you stop once you reach a specific goal. It’s ongoing.

 

What can you do?

 

I encourage you to listen to your body – really tune in. What signs and symptoms are you getting? Dig deep and become the CEO of your health. Find out what might be at the root cause of your problems. Everyone is different. What works for one person may not work for you.

 

Become your own health advocate. Educate yourself and ask tough questions. I certainly do. While I’m working with a great team of functional medicine and wellness practitioners I update them on what I’m experiencing and what I know and have learned about myself and challenge them. I also know all my test results and have a bird’s eye view of what is happening to my health.

 

Resources you might want to look into

 

If you’re ready to look deeper here are some resources that can help:

 

 

  • Blood test with your doctor, especially a functional medicine doctor. More specifically some things to look out for:
    • Your thyroid (the full panel including TSH, T3, T4, reverse T3 and thyroid antibodies)
    • Your liver enzyme ATL levels (if it’s higher than 19 for women or 30 for men it’s suggestive of non alcoholic fatty liver disease which is reported to affect 38% of the population)
    • Your CRP levels which indicate the amount of inflammation in your body. High levels are considered a non-specific marker for disease.

 

 

  • GI Map is the most reliable gut panel. It gives you a pretty comprehensive report on what is going on in your gut. (NOTE: if you live in NY look for a practitioner out of state who you can work with long distance. NY currently does not allow for testing. You can contact the lab to get a list of practitioners.)

 

  • Hormone testing. Dr. Sara Gottfried’s book The Hormone Cure is a great place to start understanding your hormones (reproductive, adrenal and thyroid). She provides is a quiz to find out where you may need extra hormonal support.

 

  • Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA) to test for heavy metals and mineral deficiencies. A HTMA looks at what minerals are reaching your cells, which cannot be seen through most other tests. For example my magnesium levels were normal according to my blood test but the HTMA revealed that I was severely lacking. This is also the most reliable test to find out if you are copper toxic. You could easily be if you’ve ever been on birth control, used a copper IUD, are or have been vegetarian, have copper pipes and/or have adrenal fatigue. The best labs to use for testing are Trace Elements (TEI) and Analytical Research Labs (ARL) through a practitioner. One place you can look one up is here. http://functionaldiagnosticnutrition.com/practitioner-inquiry-form/

 

(NOTE: if you live in NY look for a practitioner out of state who you can work with long distance. NY currently does not allow for testing.)

 

  • Genetic testing. Ben Lynch’s book “Dirty Genes” is a fantastic resource that provides a questionnaire to find out which genes you may need to “clean up” without necessarily going through the testing. The science of epigenetics, which the book focuses on, helps you understand how you influence your genes and health. You can totally support your genes to prevent disease and optimize your health. I found that by doing a real genetic test I got some profound and more detailed insights on my health and root causes of my ailments that the book does not go into. If you really want to dig deeper you can order your genetic test through 23andme and send the raw data for further analysis to Strategene.

 

  • Gluten intolerance testing. The most reliable way to know if you truly are sensitive to gluten and not just to the mold in it, for example, is genetic testing. You can order it here. The GI Map can also indicate whether you are sensitive or not by measuring your antibodies for gliadin, a marker for gluten sensitivity. To know for sure if you are genetically hard-wired to be sensitive to gluten get the genetic test here.

 

Most of your testing can be done through your functional, integrative or naturopathic medicine doctor or practitioner but if not you can order some basic hormone tests at:

 

The Canary Club www.canaryclub.org

Direct Labs www.directlabs.com

 

This is an investment. If you feel off despite your best efforts to lead a healthy life it’s worth it. You are worth it and most of all you deserve it.

How to Know If You Are Really Gluten Sensitive (It’s Likely Not What You’ve Been Told)

An estimated 30% of the population has a gluten sensitivity. Could you be one of them? The symptoms differ from person to person and are far-ranging, affecting your brain, skin, gastrointestinal tract, muscles and hormones. You can experience headaches, brain fog, bloating, gas and stomach pain just to name a few of the most common signs.

 

Personally, I struggled to understand if this has affected me. Sometimes eating pizza or splurging on a cookie once in a while would leave me feeling groggy, lightheaded, dizzy and irritable – telltale signs of a gluten sensitivity, but not always.

 

It was hard to pinpoint if I was reacting to the wheat or something else like lack of sleep, too much coffee or even the pesticides, molds or mycotoxins found in grains. Doing an elimination diet didn’t help me determine this either.

 

And it wasn’t something I wanted to give up right away either. I didn’t eat a lot of gluten that typically comes from sources like wheat, barley, and rye, but, sometimes, I wanted to splurge on a cookie, slice of pizza or croissant. 80% of the time I ate healthy the other 20% was reserved for a so-called cheat meal or treat, which meant having something like pizza once a week. How could I give up pizza – my all-time favorite food? No way. It was too hard.

 

Yet, I had a feeling that something was off, despite it not being clear if it was gluten or not. I went through multiple tests, including a genetic test for gluten sensitivity. According to Dr. Peter Osborne, author of “No Grain, No Pain”, the best way to find out if you are truly gluten sensitive is genetic testing, not a trial diet. If you have the genes for it, you have it no question.

 

My results shocked me. I found out that my immune system is very low, I have serious mineral deficiencies and major gut dysbiosis. The greatest discovery was that I have been gluten sensitive from the womb. I have the gene for gluten sensitivity.

 

Deep down a part of me didn’t want to be gluten sensitive. I wanted to eat on my terms. I was in denial and defiant, feeling like I could take on anything, even if that meant eating gluten. How bad could it be?

 

But I thought about all these years my poor body had been under attack by gluten.

Gluten was at the root of my health issues.

 

My body was setting its own terms. I needed to listen to those terms and not what my brain was telling me I wanted.

 

I love and respect my body. I need to nourish it by giving it what it needs. That means no more gluten – ever. Not one single morsel.

 

Instead of thinking I can’t have this or that, I focused on what I could have and what I could substitute for wheat and other gluten-containing foods. There are still so many great options that taste so good, like grass-fed steak and roasted sweet potatoes.

 

This mindset shift alone has helped me steer away from gluten. After cutting it out completely, I now feel sharper and calmer.

 

Are you interested in finding if you are gluten sensitive through a genetic test? Most labs only look at one gene for gluten sensitivity when there are more. To find out how to get a solid genetic test done download “6 Wellness Trends You Need To Know Right Nowhere that includes specific resources.

Can’t focus? 3 Fixes to Get You Back on Track

Can’t focus on your tasks? Or what your colleagues and especially what your boss is telling you?

 

The answer to getting your focus back up could be in your gut. It goes without saying our gut is our second brain.

 

There is a two-way communication between your brain and gut. Each gives and receives feedback to the other – the good, the bad and the ugly. The network of nerves in the gut is so large that is second only to the brain.

 

Your gut also produces most of your body’s neurotransmitters like serotonin, acetylcholine, and GABA – all essential for your brain. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that helps in learning and memory and GABA has a calming effect. More specifically it relieves anxiety, improves sleep AND improves focus.

 

If your gut is scrambled your brain will be too.

 

Here are 3 things you can do to have a healthier gut:

 

  1. Avoid Gluten. Next time you’re reaching out for that bagel, cookie or slice of bread think twice.

 

According to Dr. Alessio Fasano of Harvard, the world’s leading expert on gluten non-celiac gluten sensitivity is a real  ailment. Anyone who eats gluten is not doing their gut a favor. It creates leaky gut and inflammation regardless. Even if you are not celiac, gluten isn’t something you should eat regularly.

 

The Fix: Healthy, gluten-free foods are the way to go. Processed gluten-free products are best to avoid since they are chock full of sugar, preservatives, and additives. Here is a really easy gluten-free brownie recipe I absolutely love. It includes almonds and cacao full of great antioxidants like magnesium that is so good for your energy levels and brain.

 

Yummy Gluten Free Brownies

Total: 35 min

Yield: 9 brownies

 

Ingredients

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 pinch ground cinnamon

1 cup almond or cashew butter

1/3 cup maple syrup

2 tablespoons melted butter or coconut butter or oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large eggs

Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, mix together the almond butter, syrup, butter, vanilla and eggs. Mix the wet into the dry and then fold in the walnuts. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake until the brownies are firm but still soft in the middle, 20 to 23 minutes.

 

  1. Chew your food. Do you wolf down your food just so you can get back to what you were doing? Take a good hard look at your chewing.

 

According to a study those who chew less, allowing larger particles to pass through the body, provide opportunistic bacteria and fungi with a source of fuel during their transit.

 

Digestion starts in the mouth with your saliva. It helps break down your food especially the carbohydrates. It’s not just about WHAT you eat it’s HOW well your body absorbs it. Make it easier on your stomach and small intestine and chew your food well. It also makes your food more alkaline, which creates less gas.

 

The Fix: Give your gut a break and chew every mouthful of food at least 30 times. Sound hard? Start with at least 15 and work your way up. Enjoy your meal and your food. Savor the flavors and textures in it. Your gut will thank you for it.

 

 

 

  1. Keep Your Phone Away from Your Stomach (and any other WiFi device).

 

Why? The answer lies in something called EMF (Electro Magnetic Field) radiation. What is considered a “safe” amount of EMF exposure from WiFi devices is holding your phone 1” from your head for only 6 minutes a day. And by the way, you have to be a 220 lbs 6”2’ man.

 

Have you met someone who fits these criteria? I sure haven’t.

 

Not only has EMF radiation been known to weaken the lining of your blood-brain barrier, allowing more toxins and pathogens into your brain it is very likely that it is doing the same to your gut.

 

What we know from sure from studies is that EMF signals are very disruptive to the delicate beneficial bacteria in your intestines (gut flora). They slow down their growth, while possibly making the viruses, superbugs and harmful bacteria that are trying to take over even stronger.

 

The Fix: Do you carry your phone near your waist? Consider putting it on airplane mode –when possible – to avoid radiation. Also, create as much distance as you can (preferably at least 1 foot) from your phone, tablet or computer and gut when it makes sense. Another way to protect yourself if you’re sitting and using a tablet or laptop is this blanket that shields you from 99.9% of the radiation: https://www.bellyarmor.com/belly-blanket/