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EP 41 – Do YOU know your Basil Body Temperature?? w/ Thyroid Therapist Kristin Savory

Chantel: Hey guys, welcome to today’s episode and I’m so excited about today’s podcast cast. It’s Kristin Savory. Did I say that right Kristin?

Kristin Savory: Yup, it’s Kristin Savory.

Chantel: Okay. And I’ve been a big fan of her podcasts, I just started listening it and so I’m so excited that she agreed to come on today’s show. Tell everyone the podcast that you’re running, Kristin. What is it?

Kristin Savory: The podcast is named Thyroid.

Chantel: Yeah, so very simple. Which is perfect.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, yeah. It’s easy to look up, very simple to search. I’m an acupuncturist, I specialize in helping women find balance with their thyroid so that their hormones can actually balance themselves.

Chantel: Awesome. And so I think I’ve done acupuncture one time, I did like it, I just, you know my schedule’s kind of crazy so I just haven’t been back. But, you know what, everyone thinks, “Oh my gosh, I’m gonna be poked with all these needles.” But it didn’t hurt at all. Do you think that it does?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, you know I agree with you. I don’t find that it hurts at all. There are various different styles of acupuncture just like various different styles of massage. Some acupuncturists [inaudible 00:01:14] more on a Chinese style which typically uses thicker needles and a little heavier sensation. And other acupuncturists like myself, work with thinner needles. We’re more concerned with the practitioner feeling that the chi is starting to open and spread, versus the client actually feeling that strong sensation that something is changing.

Chantel: Gotcha. And now, tell everyone what is your website. It’s … What is your website?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, my website kristinsavory.com and Kristin is K-R-I-S-T-I-N and Savory is S-A-V-O-R-Y.

Chantel: Got it. And so you’ve got kind of a pharmacy if you will on your website with all kinds of natural supplements and talk about that for just a second because it’s funny cause I was talking to my mom the other day and you know I do intermittent fasting and I’ve just been trying all these new supplements. I went to Whole Foods and got a few supplements, it was some selenium and some other things. And as soon as I took it, normally I wait until my eating window before I take supplements, but for whatever I did it in the morning and I was like, I literally got nauseous because I hadn’t eaten anything. My mom said, “Look on the back of some of these supplements.” They’ve got so much stuff in them if you will.

So with the natural supplements that you have, do they have a lot of, like what’s your favorite and do they have a lot of things as far as just like magnesium stearate. What are some of the things that you make nauseous?

Kristin Savory: Yeah. This is such a great question and I feel like almost every single client that comes through my door or through my computer, nearly every single person that comes to me to work with me, we have address this topic at some point. The nutritional information out there, and specifically the information regarding supplements, is pretty misleading in our culture. And I think what tends to happen is that we forget that the supplement industry is an industry like anything else. Right? They need to sell a product, they need to figure out where people are suffering and they can make a change to help people feel good.

So what’s happened in that dynamic is that there’s a lot of people that have come into, or a lot of companies that have come into the supplement industry, and they’re more concerned with selling a product than really understanding bio chemical health.

Chantel: Well and the thing is, one of the things my mom said which was so smart, she’s like, “I go for whole food vitamins so that when you’re buying a vitamin or when you’re buying something, you wanna make sure it’s food. Like it’s a whole vitamin so they literally extract and they put it into a vitamin, but it’s actually food.” So if you think about it, if it’s food it shouldn’t be making you nauseous. So if you take a vitamin and it makes you nauseous, my first thing is like, okay, what kind of extra add ons are in here that’s making me nauseous, right?

Kristin Savory: So good, so good. So what your mom is really kind of bringing up for you is keep it simple. If we can stay as close to nature as possible, remembering that our bodies are nature. If we can keep what we put into our system as close to nature as possible, the results will be tremendous. Our system will be able to assimilate those nutrients the best as well as make the best use of those nutrients. And what typically happens is that there is a common assumption that with vitamins, that these vitamins are kind of magically extracted from food, and then they’re put together in a capsule. And that’s kind of a story that has developed without fact.

And it’s really developed out of marketing practices.

Chantel: Gotcha.

Kristin Savory: So we have this assumption that taking vitamin C is a natural supplement, right? When actually, vitamin C is a chemical synthetic that is processed in a factory.

Chantel: Right.

Kristin Savory: So my preference is really leaning toward whole food concentrate is what we call them. When you look at the back of a label, you’ll see ingredients like pea vine or alfalfa or nutritional yeast. Rarely will you see on the label something like mixed [inaudible 00:06:33], vitamin B in the form of niacin, vitamin C as ascorbic acid, those are kind of chemical constituents that the brands that I carry, veer away from that and they veer towards-

Chantel: So are all of your ones that you have on your website, are they whole food based?

Kristin Savory: Yes. And I’m really glad that you used that term whole good based because as we know, because of government regulations and everything that goes into keeping things safe for our society, no company can be purely whole food, right? They have certain regulations like there has to be X percentage of vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid so that you can call it a vitamin C supplement. So they [inaudible 00:07:34] certain regulations that everybody has to kind of perform to. Yeah, I believe the company that does the best job at this in keeping their whole food concentrates as pure as possible, and also having them at a clinical quality, which is very different than just kind of randomly taking something over the counter, is [inaudible 00:08:02] process.

Chantel: Say it again, you broke up right there.

Kristin Savory: It’s called standard process.

Chantel: Standard process, that’s the name of the vitamins, gotcha.

Kristin Savory: Yeah.

Chantel: Alright, well let’s jump right into the questions, this first one if Carol in Florida, this says, ‘I struggle with Hashimoto’s and as a results have major digestive issues. I’ve read that the reason for this is that I’m not producing enough hydrochloric acid. Is this something that I can supplement or is there any sort of enzymes that I can take to aid with my digestion?” And this is Carol in Florida but we did get another person that kind of had the same question. And she was asking almost like this but she also added in that she got one of those alkaline water machines and she felt like since she’s been taking alkaline water, she’s been getting worse. So that was another question that we didn’t put on here and I can’t even remember who it was from but it was very similar to this question.

So, kind of two questions, one is can she supplement, is there any kind of enzymes that she can supplement to aid with her digestion and talk about hydrochloric acid for just a second.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, great question. So Carol, I love it when clients can make that connection just already within themselves that she’s noticing because of her Hashimoto’s or in relationship to the Hashimoto’s and how her endocrine system is functioning today, that she’s noticing digestive stress. It’s great that she can make that connection. So good job Carol on that. And then, taking it from there, whenever there is a low functioning thyroid, and so a low functioning thyroid in a blood test, that will look like a high TSH level. When a person’s thyroid is low function, by definition, they do not produce enough hydrochloric acid. That is just a regular kind of standby.

Regardless of why that thyroid is not functioning at it’s best, it will produce less hydrochloric acid. So often, Carol and maybe some of Carol’s friends, might feel that with their Hashimoto’s diagnose or low functioning thyroid, that they might also find that they have a whole bunch of food allergies, right? And then they might start going ahead and eliminating those foods. Well the problem is not in the foods, the problem is really that their digestive is not supported enough from the endocrine system. So I believe that the best way to address this is symptomatically yes. Take in hydrochloric acid, so that food starts digesting in their stomach more efficiently. That takes a lot of stress out of the liver and the gallbladder, but then [crosstalk 00:11:14].

Chantel: So is there a difference, let’s talk to people about the difference between hydrochloric acid and digestive enzymes.

Kristin Savory: Absolutely. Absolutely. Lemme just back up one minute before we move onto that though. Cause what is critical in terms of Carol’s case, we could go ahead and give her hydrochloric acid, and that would take care of her symptom. But does it take care of why the problem started at the beginning? No.

Chantel: Right.

Kristin Savory: It doesn’t. So on one hand we wanna give her hydrochloric acid, so that we take care of what her initial problem is, but we still need to give her endocrine support. We still need to give her something that is supporting the thyroid gland in relationship to her pituitary, her adrenal glands, as well as her pancreas or maybe her ovaries. Okay?

Chantel: So when someone’s gonna eat, I think that there’s tons out there about digestive enzymes and stuff like that so, one question that we have gotten in the past, we have a lot of people ask this is, is if I take digestive enzymes, is my body, like let’s say at every meal, I take some digestive enzymes. Is that going to make it where my body is not going to be able to process that food without the digestive enzymes? What’s your opinion on that?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, another really good question. That is the trickiest piece about supplementing and why I usually recommend that nobody supplement by themselves. Okay? I really believe that we can get into a bio chemical quagmire if we take care of our own supplement needs. Because what we’re looking at over the long term is pacing. And what we don’t wanna have happen is that the system starts to rely on the supplement to perform the body’s function. So what we’re looking when we do supplement, whether that is endocrine support, hydrochloric acid support, or enzyme support, we’re looking to wake something up in the body so that your body can then start to perform the function by itself. Does that make sense?

Chantel: Yeah, it does, absolutely.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, otherwise we’re walking around with crutches like for the rest of our lives. And no, they might not be crutches that go under the arms, but they’re crutches that we’re taking daily.

Chantel: Right. And so hydrochloric acid is just a supplement that you can get at Whole Foods or online or on your site and literally, would you suggest that if someone’s having digestive issues for a little while that they should be, what would you recommend, the hydrochloric acid or the digestive enzymes? Which one?

Kristin Savory: I generally lean towards the hydrochloric acid first and there’s a really good reason for this. It depends case by case in terms of what is happening for that particular person. But often, I like to start things as high up in the system as I can. So instead of wiping out a problem all completely, I wanna give the support as early as I can. When I give hydrochloric acid as support, I’m taking care of food being digested in the stomach. Right? So if food is digested properly in the stomach, then I’m kind of providing a window of opportunity for the liver, the gallbladder, and the pancreas to respond in a healthier way which will then provide the enzyme support for the small intestine. Does that make sense?

Chantel: Yeah, it does. So what I’m hearing you say is that, when you take that hydrochloric acid a lot of people who have these thyroid issues and digestive issues, they’re not able to digest that food in the stomach because there’s no digestive enzymes and you don’t have that hydrochloric acid in your stomach to digest it. So now, because of that, now your liver is in working overdrive, your gallbladder is working in overdrive, your pancreas is working in overdrive, because your stomach didn’t digest the food and let’s stop for just a second. One of my areas that I have got to work on and it’s one of my principle’s in my book that I talk about but I will tell you it is the one principle that I don’t do well with, is slowing down and really, that digestion, so much of it happens when you’re chewing your food.

And so if you’re just eating as fast as you can and it’s bringing it down, your stomach doesn’t have teeth. So it can’t, it can digest from that hydrochloric acid but if you’re low on that hydrochloric acid, you’ve got issues there. But talk about that for just a second about the digestion that happens while you’re chewing.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, so actually I’d like to even backtrack it a little further because digestion actually starts at the first start of food.

Chantel: Right.

Kristin Savory: So even beyond the actual physical mechanics of chewing and giving into that process, as soon as you have the thought, “I’m hungry, there’s something that I’d like to eat.” Right from that instant, the neurotransmitters in your system start firing differently and you start producing different neurotransmitters to begin to support the digestive process. So you’re right on the money in terms of slowing down because most people just sort of grab food out of habit, out of really knowing what their system wants, and a lot of times it’s around convenience. It’s not necessarily around-

Chantel: What your body is craving.

Kristin Savory: Exactly. Exactly. And so then we start to kind of get into these neurotransmitter ruts, right, where we’re constantly reaching for the same type of comfort foods, or foods that just get us out of a tight bind. Maybe we’ve got a lot on our schedule, we don’t really have the time to sneak lunch in and so we’re kind of finding a work around it and then we choose that same convenient food or craving food or comfort food, to get us out of that tight wedge.

Chantel: Right. So as far as the hydrochloric acid, what’s funny about that is if you go to Whole Foods or any of these places like, you always see this stuff about digestive enzymes and stuff like that. But you don’t see a lot of hydrochloric acid like pills, you know what I mean? When you’re going there, and so, there’s something called HCL with pepsin. And then there’s, so just talk about like where do you get this hydrochloric acid, how much do you take, do you take it with every meal, talk about that for just a second. And what is it this HCL with pepsin?

Kristin Savory: Right. Right. Right. So.

Chantel: And there’s another one called Betaine HCL so talk about that.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, yeah, yeah. My preference is for the betaine hydrochloric acid and essentially what that is is that’s a hydrochloric acid that’s coming from a cow and it’s in the closest biochemical form that we can have to our own body. So that’s definitely my preference. But, it kind of goes back to that initial answer where the supplement industry, it’s an industry. So they’re looking to seel products just like any other industry. And they sort of have to keep current with what’s the new edge, what’s gonna make my product look different or stand out on the shelf. There’s a lot of misconceptions around hydrochloric acid especially from the medical industry where there’s the idea that too much acid will cause reflux.

And so a lot of companies have added ingredients like pepsin to serve as a coating. Right?

Chantel: So would you say you wouldn’t recommend the pepsin?

Kristin Savory: No, it’s unnecessary. That’s not the issue at all.

Chantel: So when you say betaine, B-E-T-A-I-N-E HCL, that is the one that’s coming from the cow?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, it’s just the purest form betaine [crosstalk 00:21:00]

Chantel: The purest form.

Kristin Savory: Yeah.

Chantel: So if you see something that just says hydrochloric acid but it doesn’t say betaine hydrochloric acid, then you know that that’s … So your ideal one is the betaine HCL.

Kristin Savory: You can assume that that is the one that’s closest to nature.

Chantel: And would you say 500 milligrams, like when you’re done eating, would you take one of those or …

Kristin Savory: You know, coming from the whole food perspective, we’re not as concerned with dosage as what they are in the synthetic supplement realm. The supplement realm has really organized itself around daily values, percentages, and milligrams. And from a whole food perspective, we’re looking at what is coming from nature, what’s already in, what’s in a beet, right? So we don’t break that down because as you and I know both know, the nutritional value of a beet in February is definitely than the nutritional value of a beet in the summer, right? So it’s not a standard. It’s not a controlled percent of daily value. So when we’re looking at whole food concentrate, I really recommend that people follow the label.

And again, especially when working with alternative practitioners or even when working with our own biochemistry, it’s quite for the American personality to come into play and think that more is better.

Chantel: That’s one of my problems. Like my mom jokes me sometimes cause she’ll be like, “If it says take two vitamins, you’ll take three. If it says take one, you’ll take two.” Which is not necessarily better, which is absolutely the case. That is really helpful and I would be interested to see Carol if you try this betaine HCL or hydrochloric acid, if it does well for you and does that help with your thyroid problems in slowing down and setting those timers to kind of go, “Okay, I’ve gotta chew slowly, I’ve gotta chew in my mouth, I have to digest my food.” So that’s awesome.

Kristin Savory: The only thing that I would add for Carol is to go ahead and bring in that betaine support but then let’s also make sure that she has either a product like Simplex F or Paraplex from Standard Process to help give that endocrine support so that eventually, we can drop the hydrochloric acid, have her endocrine system functioning better on it’s own, and potentially begin to start to shift, if she’s on any other [crosstalk 00:23:59].

Chantel: So say that one more time with those two items.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, so there’s two products from Standard Process, these two products are far superior to anything else that I’ve seen on the market.

Chantel: Okay.

Kristin Savory: One is called Simplex F and that is for women who are of child bearing years. So women who are menstruating, they need Simplex F. It’s a glandular formula, it has in it pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, and ovaries, because they are of the child bearing years. Those are the four main glands that are working together to provide most of the hormonal input in the system.

Chantel: So what would say to someone who was like, maybe between 40 and 45? Because kind of between 40 and 45, you know women are in that transition period, what would you say for those women?

Kristin Savory: As long as they’re still in the transition period, and haven’t gone through nine months without having their period, I would still encourage them to be with the Simplex F.

Chantel: Okay.

Kristin Savory: Once they make that transition, and they’re nine months out from their last cycle, then I would move them over to a different product that’s called Paraplex by Standard Process. That has in it, the pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, and then it had pancreas instead of ovaries. What happens as a woman moves closer and closer towards menopause, not cycling in the same way, the ovaries actually atrophy a little bit. It’s not that the ovaries aren’t as important or don’t play an endocrine role, but the ovaries kind of move more towards the backward and the pancreas, and your blood sugar levels become even more important in the menopausal years.

Chantel: Awesome. Well, this is another question, it’s from Angela in Rochester, she says you’ve mentioned before in another podcast that taking my basal body temperature is the best way to check my thyroid. But I haven’t found an affordable thermometer for this. What is the big difference in using a normal thermometer to take my temperature and checking my basal temperature? You said that morning temperature is most accurate so I’ve been sticking to this.

Kristin Savory: That’s great. And what was her name in Rochester?

Chantel: Angela.

Kristin Savory: Angela, I actually, I’m from the Buffalo area so I have even more love for this question. So that’s a great question. Angela, I try to keep everything as simple as possible for my clients. I really am not interested in life being a hurdle. So, you can get specific basal body temperature thermometers, but I don’t think that that’s important. I am happy for people to be using a regular thermometer. The reason being-

Chantel: But honestly, like her question’s a little strange, Angela, and forgive me if, I mean like I just went on my phone to go on Amazon and you can get a clinical basal thermometer for like $18 on Amazon. So I don’t know where’s she looking of where the prices are but I mean, you can get one from $18 to $25. And you know another question we get is basically to expand is saying, what is the difference, first start with that. What’s the difference between a normal thermometer and a basal one? So start with that Kristin.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, a basal body temperature thermometer, it’s an old mercury thermometer. So, when you think of those old school thermometers that I grew up with, I don’t know you’re a little bit younger than me. So those old school thermometers, the glass ones with the mercury in them, that’s a basal body thermometer. Our newer thermometers, they operate a little bit differently and so those ones are … Because of how they’re reading them, it’s just not quite the same. But for me, that piece is not so important, because what we’re really looking at overtime is what those readings are overtime. So as long as we’re using the same tool and not switching back and forth, we’re still getting a scientific read.

So, again an interest in keeping as simple and easy, cost effective for people, I usually tell them, use whatever thermometer you have at home. Because that will still give [crosstalk 00:28:58].

Chantel: Well, and you’re right, like if they wanna get one of those mercy thermometers with the basal body temperature but really, now they have digital basal thermometers. And the digital basal thermometers basically, the main difference is really that the body temperature, they do it by tenths of a degree. So instead of like a regular thermometer saying you’re temperature is 97.3 or whatever, they’re now saying it’s 97 point, you know. Like instead of just 97, they might say like 97.05 or whatever it is.

Kristin Savory: It’s too a hundredth of a degree, yeah.

Chantel: Hundredth of a degree, yeah.

Kristin Savory: What happens automatically within that thermometer is that it will take that hundredth and it will round it up or round it down for us.

Chantel: Yeah. But don’t you agree that just using one of the digital basal thermometers, it’s so much easier to read and doing it in the morning?

Kristin Savory: In my opinion it is and that’s one of the reasons why I don’t necessarily push people towards getting those old school thermometers, it’s just simple, it’s timed. Technically the reading’s supposed to be under the armpit, forget that. That’s just awkward for people, are they getting it in the right position, you know, is the arm folded over enough, it just makes it too complicated. Take it as normal, under the tongue and continue to track your readings so that becomes our scientific curve.

Chantel: And wouldn’t you agree, you need to do it right like before you get up to go to the bathroom, like literally stick it next to your bed, and the minute you wake up you literally grab it and stick it in your mouth.

Kristin Savory: Absolutely.

Chantel: Is the most accurate.

Kristin Savory: As soon as you activate adrenal glands, and activate your metabolism which you do as soon as you stand up, you will get a different read. So to get the most accurate before even going to the bathroom, you get woke up from your dream, and go ahead and take [crosstalk 00:31:08].

Chantel: And what do you think those numbers need to be? And you know obviously taking a blood test is the best way to do it but if you were gonna do it via the temperature, and I think, I personally think it’s very accurate, for me anyway, it matches kind of my blood readings for sure when I do it. But when you’re waking up in the morning, what would say? So again, it’s gotta be the second you wake up, don’t go to the bathroom, don’t do anything. What would those readings be if you had say, if it’s between this and this, you might wanna get blood work and there’s a possible thyroid issue. What would you say they are?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, again I like to look at an average when doing that because that average will kind of shift per person. And again when looking at that average, we really need to know where the woman is in her cycle. Because like from your experience, your temperature is gonna drop significantly around ovulation. So I don’t want that-

Chantel: And that’s what women do, that’s what women have done years ago to figure out are they ovulating or not right?

Kristin Savory: Totally. Totally. And they’ll spend a whole bunch of money on those ovulation kits, and …

Chantel: You don’t necessarily need to.

Kristin Savory: You don’t necessarily need to. Especially after you’re tracking it at least for a month or two depending on how …

Chantel: So look we’re saving everyone money right now, no one needs to go, if you wanna figure out, you’re trying to have a baby, and you wanna do this, and honestly, I’ve known people to use this method instead of using condoms and birth control because birth control has gotten such a bad rep of all, how bad it is for you. And you could literally use this method for keeping pregnant. So let’s first talk about that for just a second. For those people who are trying, let’s just say they’re trying to get pregnant, what would that temperature look like when they are ovulating?

Kristin Savory: Right. So, we really like, we’d like that basal body temperature to be around 97.8, right? I mean that’s ideal. Once the temperature starts dropping down towards 97.6, 97.5, that’s okay for a waking temperature, but if we’re getting down towards the 97.3’s, 97.2’s, that’s a cause for me to go ahead and do, not necessarily be aggressive, but to start providing direct support or request somebody to go get testing, okay? Now when we’re looking at a basal body temperature chart especially in terms of women who are wanting to get pregnant, we’re looking for day one through 14, to be at a certain level. Probably around 97.6 is what we’re look at, okay? And we’d like that line to be pretty even.

So maybe on a day it’s 97.5, maybe on another day it’s 97.6, maybe on another day it’s 97.7. but it’s not all over the place. And then [crosstalk 00:34:34].

Chantel: If it is all over the place, what is that saying to you?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, that’s indicative of some type of endocrine disruption or even a complication with the liver not processing the hormone as efficiently as it could.

Chantel: Gotcha.

Kristin Savory: Yeah. So it starts to kind of expand out a little bit because it’s not just the endocrine system that is making, processing, [inaudible 00:35:01].

Chantel: So if someone is looking to say oh, am I ovulating or not? Would you say around that 97.3, you would say that that might be where they would be ovulating during that time?

Kristin Savory: Yes. Now so around day 12, day 14-ish, anytime in there, if we see a significant drop, it can go 97.3, 97.2, that is likely a sign that that is a day of ovulation, okay?

Chantel: So that’s really important because you need to know am I ovulating or is my thyroid acting up, right? So you really need to be, you know that’s such a great point because we need to be measuring your temperature not just for one day and going, okay it’s 97.3, my thyroid’s off. Right? I need to see if I’m ovulating. And how many days are, is a woman looking like they’re ovulating for?

Kristin Savory: I’m sorry missed that question.

Chantel: So, the ovulation standard in a women is approximately how many days?

Kristin Savory: Yeah well ovulation itself will kind of last over two days or so, right and so there’s a little bit of a lead up before it and then a little bit of action during it, so in terms of getting pregnant, we’re looking at a three to five day window around that time period and bear in mind that if a woman’s trying to get pregnant, that sperm itself can live within the body for a few days as well. So that window can kind of expand towards five days.

Chantel: Oh my gosh, I have to tell you this story. This is gonna be really random. So I was at a party this Saturday, okay this is crazy. So I was talking, you know someone had introduced me to this person and I said, “Hi, I’m Chantel.” And he give me his name. And I said, he said, we were talking about our families and he said, “Well I have two kids, and then I have two turkey baster kids.” And I said, “Excuse me?” And he said, “Yeah, I had a friend that was a lesbian and she wanted to get pregnant and so what we did is we made sure she was ovulating and I ejaculated in a cup, and we took a turkey baster and literally on the day she was ovulating, she inserted, you know I left the room, she inserted it and she got pregnant instantly, you know several weeks later found out she was pregnant.” And then they did it a year later and the first time they literally did, he ejaculated in cup, they took the turkey baster, inserted it and they got pregnant.

I was like, “Oh my gosh.” I was freaking out. I was just like oh my gosh. And I’m thinking like all these people are spending all this money, they’re spending all this money, you know $30,000, I’m thinking, these people need to go get a cup and a turkey baster.

Kristin Savory: Well, there’s a lot of different things that can go on case by case. But it is, it’s modern times. There’s so many ways that babies can come to us these days. It’s great.

Chantel: It’s crazy. Alright well let’s move on. This is Allison in Iowa. “One of my really good friends became vegetarian and her thyroid seems to be improving. She says this has to do with the hormones in the meat. Have you heard of people successfully healing their thyroid by cutting out meat and if so, why does it work?”

Kristin Savory: Well I really believe this is a short term solution, not a long term solution. And preferably what’s happening for her is that her system is detoxifying with the increase vegetable load and the decrease of meat especially if it is processed, if those animals are eating hormones and they’re getting a lot of antibiotics and they’re having a lot of vaccinations and stuff like that. So, yes. The quality of how the animal is fed will translate to the meat and then as we eat, that will translate towards us.

Chantel: So lemme ask you this, what is your diet Kristin? Like are you, do you do paleo, do you vegetarian, are you vegan, what do you feel best doing?

Kristin Savory: I’m an everything more. Which means that like an omnivore, or an herbivore or something like that. I really do eat everything. I really, really do. I don’t like putting limitations on my [crosstalk 00:39:59].

Chantel: So in my book I talk about don’t deprive yourself, so you’re definitely not depriving yourself. And you’re very thin Kristin.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, I am.

Chantel: Can you share with us how much you weigh?

Kristin Savory: Oh. I’m about five foot five and a half, and I weigh about 115 pounds. I have a very slight frame. So am I blessed in that cultural way, but I’m also 46 years old and my hormones have been shifted over the years. And my system is very sensitive to what I eat and I can gain weight very quickly. So instead of depriving myself, I do like to keep a few things just in the back of my mind. And what feels good in my body and generally what I kind of encourage people to move towards, is more vegetables, less sugar. And that doesn’t have to be like a solid rule day in, day out or anything like that, it’s almost the same as how we were talking about taking your temperature, kind of have this bigger view of your food world.

You know, you should be able to go out with your girlfriends and have a drink on Friday night. You should be able to go to a company and have a dessert. But when you look at your week, are you having that dessert every single day? And for me, if I were to have that dessert every single day, I would definitely put on five pounds and that I would start to not feel so good about myself and my mood would probably and I would probably scream at my kids and maybe get in a tussle with my husband, and all of that would start to happen. And then if I just come back to looking at that overall view, for me again, more vegetables. That is like, I’ll tell you. Nobody eats enough vegetables. Not even a vegetarian. They don’t.

Chantel: Yeah.

Kristin Savory: So moving more and more towards vegetables and then [crosstalk 00:42:22].

Chantel: Now how is your thyroid? How is your thyroid doing? Are you taking anything for your thyroid or does your thyroid function at high peaks?

Kristin Savory: Yeah. You know my thyroid used to be a total mess, 16 years ago was the time in my life where it was very hard to get out of bed. It took me about four years to really understand what was happening and how to work with it. At that time 16 years ago, I was actually taking a slew of what I didn’t realize was synthetic supplements. Once I got off of those supplements and came back more to a whole foods approach, that is when I really started to see the shift. It took me about a year to put everything together once I kind of wrapped my head around what was happening. And since then, I’ve been off all medications, and I’m actually these days, I’m functioning very well, being on minimal supplementation.

Chantel: Well this brings me to the next question. It’s Carrie in Williamsburg, she says, “I was just talking to my mom the other day and we were talking about how it seems like there’s a sudden onset of thyroid issues these days. Until the past five to 10 years, neither of us remember it being so common to have thyroid issues. What is our culture doing to cause so many thyroid issues all of a sudden and it seems like an epidemic.” What do you think? I mean I agree with this Carrie, I’m glad you asked this question but it is. It’s out of control and we’re getting so, I’m so glad you came on this show because we’re just getting, we have had a couple people talk about thyroid on the show but we just keep getting more and more and more and more questions coming in in the onslaught about thyroid, thyroid, thyroid.

Kristin Savory: I do think that there’s two pieces to this component. I do think that we live a time where there’s so much awareness and I think that that is great because people are starting to advocate for themselves and their becoming more involved in their health questions and how they’re choosing to navigate their health solutions. So I do believe that with increased testing, there is more awareness. Now we also can not deny the fact that we live in a very chemical oriented culture. So everything from buying our sheets to the carpets on our floor to new cars, there are halogens that are in our environment to a degree that have not been in our environment before. Halogens is actually a chemical term, I don’t know I’m remembering, if you can go back to your seventh grade science class, you learned about that one row of chemicals called halogens.

Iodine, chlorine, bromine, they’re all in the same field. There’s so much chlorine and so much bromine in our environment these days. From fire retardants, things that are put on our mattresses, the chemicals that go on our sheets to …

Chantel: Even in the clothing. Some of the clothing that they’re bringing from China and all this stuff has a lot of that stuff in it.

Kristin Savory: Yeah. And so happens is that our thyroid can not tell the difference between iodine and bromine and chlorine, and so it binds to those halogens instead of binding to the iodine. And our thyroid needs a significant amount of iodine to be able to function as well as it can. So that’s a complicating factor, also I think if you look at our food resources right, that the amount of sugar in the average American diet these days is probably about 10 times than what it used to be, right?

Chantel: Yeah.

Kristin Savory: We’re getting sugar in salad dressing. You wouldn’t even think that that is something to be concerned about. I had a client who came back to me and she was like, “I’ve been buying these frozen peas for years, and I just read the label, and they had sugar in them as a preservative.” So even things that we don’t even think about checking.

Chantel: Right.

Kristin Savory: Right.

Chantel: Absolutely. And it’s even with the, one of the things that I say, I think carrageenan is terrible for your gut and I try to stay away from it as much as possible, but a lot of these organic almond milks, they’re filled with carrageenan and even like a Kind bar. I won’t eat a Kind bar because it has soy lectin in it and say and lectins, I mean, these are things that are not great for your body. So it’s just a matter of really looking at what you’re eating and looking at all of the ingredients. Alright Cara in Atlanta says, “I’ve recently switched from Synthroid to Armour Thyroid and I got this nasty rash all over my chest and neck. I’m racking my brain to find out what is going on and the only thing I can figure out is my medication switch or just my thyroid in general because every issue I’ve seem have is related back to this darn thyroid. Have you ever heard of a rash before concerning your thyroid and what is causing it?”

Kristin Savory: Yeah. Now this is actually a very complicated question. I would love to see her working with me in some capacity. So, what could be happening, and this again would be a case by case kind of situation. What could be happening is depending on what was going her thyroid in the first place. When we are on levothyroxine, all we’re doing is dumping T4 into the system. Okay. T4 has to be converted to T3 to be effective. Okay. So I don’t know whether that levo was actually supporting her thyroid or not, it really depends on where the breakdown was in her endocrine system as well as in her liver. And that would be something I would have to ask my questions for.

When she made the switch over to Armour, and Armour is my preference, western medication to start. Okay. When she made the switch over to-

Chantel: Do you have a preference Armour and Nauture Throid?

Kristin Savory: Yes. Nature Throid. Yeah.

Chantel: Nature Throid you’d prefer?

Kristin Savory: Yeah. But, when she made the switch over to Armour, she’s giving her system and her thyroid more of a glandular support. So there’s gonna be T3, there’s gonna be T4, there’s also gonna be calcitonin in that medication. When her endocrine gland gets healthier and in this case her thyroid, as that gets healthier, she will actually instigate a detoxification process in her body. So, she could be starting to actually move toxins as her system is getting healthier, and that is expressing as a rash. So I would have to know timeline, how long has this been going on for, what is helping the rash feel better, what is the qualities around the rash so that I can get a better idea, is her system detoxifying, or is she having a reaction?

Chantel: Great. This is Denise in Little Rock. “I’ve tried to cut out most dairy since they seem to affect me negatively. But lately I’ve heard more and more people mentioning raw dairy saying it’s a healthier alternative. Some people are saying it’s illegal though. Is this true and where can I get safely and legally?”

Kristin Savory: Yeah, where, what state is this question coming from again?

Chantel: From Little Rock, Arkansas. Which my mom lives in Jones Borough, Arkansas.

Kristin Savory: Cool, that’s great. Well again, the raw milk question is a state by state legislation. So people need to go to realmilk.org to know if their state, if there is a way to be getting raw milk products. I happen to live in Colorado, Colorado is a state where you can buy a part of a cow, and then you can use those cow products however you want. So I do get a raw milk delivery every week.

Chantel: Wow.

Kristin Savory: I know, it’s so great. It’s awesome that in Colorado we have that access.

Chantel: And I’ve actually never tried raw milk before. Do you notice a huge difference, if you, do you feel like if I have raw milk, like let’s say you were on a cruise and they didn’t raw milk, will you have regular milk or you just say forget it, no thank you, I’ll just wait till I get home and have raw milk?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, I probably, it would depend. I would probably take the hall pass on it probably, but again, like if I was really missing my dandy blend drink or something like that and I didn’t have any other alternative in terms of a milk product, then I would maybe use it. So it would probably be a case by case thing, how long I had been without my dandy blend drink, all sorts of stuff like that.

Chantel: And what is the difference between raw dairy and regular dairy?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, so raw dairy is straight from the animal. So whether that is goat, sheep, or cow, they would milk that animal and then they bottle it and that’s it. So there’s no heating process whatsoever. When something becomes pasteurize there’s a bit of a misnomer around that. They pasteurize to a level that the calcitonin, or it’s not calcitonin, I’m confusing, there’s a certain enzyme that they pasteurize to when that enzyme is burned off. So it’s really not about bacteria count at all. They’ve decided that this heat level is related to this enzyme, okay? But the key is is that we need that enzyme to integrate calcium in our body. Very few people make that enzyme and I apologize, the name of the enzyme is just slipping from me in this moment.

So what is interesting to note is that in the United States, we have the absolute highest dairy consumption of the world and we also have the highest rate of osteoporosis. So, it’s not that important that calcium is in our dairy products, it’s rather the enzyme is present to make that calcium utilizable for our body.

Chantel: So lemme repeat back what I heard you say. So, when you have the raw dairy, a lot of people can digest that raw dairy. But when you have pasteurized dairy, there’s an enzyme that’s produced in that process dairy and that when it goes into your digestive tract, you don’t have the enzymes to process it when it’s in that pasteurized state.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, and it just came back to me. It’s the phosphatase enzyme. Men have a little bit more of it because they make it in their testes, women have almost none of the phosphatase enzyme. So think about how many older women you know that are suffering with osteoporosis, bone loss, even that are starting to have to get bone grass for their teeth and stuff like that. Although they’ve been having dairy products their whole life. Now not only is that phosphatase enzyme gone, but then we also have to think about the other molecules. Protein changes under heat, fat changes under heat as well.

So from the people that I study with, they believe that milk should, pasteurized milk, should have a totally different name because it’s not the same as nature’s milk.

Chantel: Perfect. Kelly in Murphy’s Borough, I think that’s right, “When it comes to trying to help heal my thyroid naturally, what are some of the best foods that I can eat and will my diet really make a difference? I’m so tired and I don’t wanna feel this way for the rest of my life. What should I eat and what should I cut out?”

Kristin Savory: Yeah. Great question. And yes, yes, yes. Your diet makes a huge difference in terms of how your thyroid gland is functioning. Let’s see. In terms of food to really integrate. There’s two pieces to this question that I’d like to address. Number one is I like to use my hands in terms of helping people determine portion sizes, right. So protein, I like to suggest that people have protein that’s about the size of the palm. Protein is about the size of the palm. Vegetables. We look at two hands worth of vegetables. Carbohydrates. I’m looking at three fingers. And fats oils, I’m looking at about a thumb’s worth over the food. Okay?

So I like to maintain that kind of balance so that we can get the best blood sugar response throughout the day. Now for looking at particular food items that we want to kind of bring in to support the thyroid naturally, we’re looking at true vegetables. So the definition of a vegetable is anything that goes to seed versus having the seed on the inside. So a tomato, is that a fruit or a vegetable?

Chantel: Fruit.

Kristin Savory: Exactly. Collard greens, fruit or a vegetable?

Chantel: Vegetable.

Kristin Savory: Vegetable. That’s it. Right there. Avocado, fruit or a vegetable?

Chantel: Fruit.

Kristin Savory: Right. So I find is that most people think they’re eating vegetables, but they’re actually eating fruit. Most people are having red peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, avocados. And it’s not that those foods are bad, but they’re not true vegetables. So if we can sneak in more true vegetables, that is a great way to support your thyroid. I love things like seaweed, I love garlic, I really believe in having clean, lean meats is really healthy for the thyroid as well, all of those things that are gonna bring a more of an overall balance to the whole system, that’s what’s gonna help support the thyroid.

Chantel: Awesome. Melanie in [inaudible 00:58:55] says, “I’ve loved hearing from so many doctors on your podcast lately. But I don’t have a super technical mind and sometimes I’m having a hard time keeping up with their lingo. I really wanna understand in the difference in T4 and T3 and what I need to be looking for when I have my blood work done. Can you or your next guest explain this really simply?”

Kristin Savory: Yes. Great question. Any time that we can keep things simple, our clients are gonna be more empowered and they’re gonna be able to ask the critical questions to bring them closer to their health. So this is great. So many people have a lot of complicated protocols. First things first. Ask your doctor for a TSH test. TSH stands thyroid stimulating hormone. It is the most basic panel that you can get. And no, it does not show everything that could be happening in relationship to your thyroid, but it is a place to start.

Chantel: And lemme stop you right there because we’ve had different people on the show and if you look at those tests, they say between .5 and 4.5 is normal range and we’ve had different doctors and different experts say look, we’ve had people feel their best when they’re one and under or two and a half and under. And they’re saying that four and a half is a normal range, but when we see people that are four and a half, they’re like dead as a door nail. So what would you say for you, you’ve seen people, like for me, when my thyroid was at a four and a half to five, which they’re saying is normal, I couldn’t even function, I was so tired.

Kristin Savory: I totally agree. And what I’m looking in a TSH range is I want like 1.7 to 2.3. Okay? So as soon as that TSH to 2.5 and higher, I’m looking at I wanna have more testing, I wanna see what’s going on past that. But to keep it very simple, TSH, we’re looking at between 1.7, 2.3, that keeps it very manageable for my client to be able to track what’s going on with their system.

Chantel: So when you hear people saying you know when my TSH is between .5 and 1, that’s when I feel the best, how would you respond to that?

Kristin Savory: When the TSH is at a low level like that, technically that is veering towards a hyper thyroid. Okay? Hyper thyroid is probably the trickiest situation to work with considering our culture. Hyper thyroid people, it tends to be a transitory state so it’s not a sustainable state in the system. Hyper thyroid eventually crashes and generally crashes to a total adrenal burnout, thyroid burnout, it really isn’t a good situation. Where it gets really tricky, is that we live in such a fast paced society, that people aren’t very good at recognizing a neutral state, right? We lean towards running quicker. Getting more things done. We lean towards anxiety almost. Right?

How many people do you know like almost create problems where there isn’t a problem because we like that charge? So most people will say that they feel really good at that hyper thyroid level, but I question whether that’s sustainable. Whether that’s actually healthy.

Chantel: Gotcha. Great. Patty in North Carolina says, “I’ve heard doctors say that I need to wait four to six weeks between thyroid checkups to see a real difference but I’ve been doing self test that I bought online almost weekly and I notice a change each week. Why does the doctor need to say that I need to wait four to six weeks to see a difference?” Patty in North Carolina.

Kristin Savory: I actually prefer to wait longer than the four to six weeks. But, the reason why a lot of medical doctors wanna do that is again, we wanna see what the thyroid’s doing over the course of time. And we don’t really have great testing around that yet, there really isn’t. There are some metabolic tests that start to lean in that direction, but even those metabolic tests, I question how accurate they are. So, when we’re looking at any particular day, because the endocrine system is a live system, it’s relating to how much sleep you’ve got, what the weather pattern was, it’s also relating to the season. We will get fluctuations day by day, those fluctuations shouldn’t necessarily be extreme, but they will be present.

So if we test too soon, we might actually be connecting more with the fluctuations versus the true health of the gland.

Chantel: Awesome. Okay. Paula in Charleston. “One of my friends went in for Botox and her doctor said that there are some hormones that you can insert via your booty that will help with anti aging in case you have issues producing hormones on your own as you age. Have you heard of this and is it safe?”

Kristin Savory: Well her doctor is right, you can do that. You can do that. In my opinion, again, I try to veer people more towards supporting the glands than supplementing hormones directly. Anytime that we supplement hormones directly, whether that’s orally or through the skin and into the muscle tissue, we override our glandular system. So, instead of, because I don’t have information on the booty hormones right now, in terms of what she’s exactly taking, let’s use Progesterone as an example. Any time that you are supplementing with Progesterone, whether that’s Pregnenolone or Progesterone cream, anything of that hormonal cascade, you’re actually telling your system at a glandular level that it doesn’t need to work.

So the glands itself actually start to atrophy because your body will start to relate towards what the input is from that hormone that you’re supplementing with. Does that make sense?

Chantel: Yes, it does.

Kristin Savory: So I don’t like working that way because I wanna provide as much support for the whole system as I can so that you make the right amount of hormones for you based on whether you’re pregnant, whether lactating, whether you’re moving towards menopause, whether you’re a 13 year old girl who’s just starting her cycle. I really trust that supporting the glands themselves, then the body will have the chance to make the hormonal proportions correct for them.

Chantel: Alright. Perfect. Kelsey in Virginia Beach, “I’ve read that fermented foods are good for digestion. When I think fermented, the only thing that comes to mind is sauerkraut. Yuck. Is there anything that is fermented and actually tastes good or should I just stick with a good probiotic?” And I would like for you talk, there’s a lot of talk now about probiotic and prebiotic. And what is your thoughts on that? Do you think you should be taking a probiotic and prebiotic, talk about that for a second?

Kristin Savory: Yeah, let’s start with probiotic. And this might be a little interesting for your crowd and please follow up with questions if you have that. So probiotic material, I’m much more of a fan again of getting it from whole foods versus in a probiotic form. And there’s two reasons for that. Have you ever traveled to Mexico?

Chantel: Yes.

Kristin Savory: Have you gotten sick in Mexico or know somebody who’s gotten sick?

Chantel: I know somebody, yeah, my husband, he went on a mission’s trip to Bolivia and he went to Cochabamba, Bolivia and they call it the Cochabamba Two Step, and they say you can only be two steps away from the toilet, that’s why it’s called the Cochabamba Two Step. But he has gotten that, I haven’t cause I only stay at five star resorts and I only drink bottled water and just really kind of am super careful.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, but that is a great example. So your husband, he already knows in his body that the bacteria in his home, in his community is quite different than what he experienced in Bolivia, right? He had a very different reaction to it. And sometimes people can even experience that from going from Colorado to San Francisco. I’ve had people had bacterial reactions just from the food that they were served in San Francisco. So what we’re showing in that case is that bacteria isn’t just bacteria, right. So, what is kind of natural for you might not be what is natural for me, which certainly isn’t what’s natural for your husband right, cause he got sick in Bolivia. Right?

So I always question, who’s to say that the bacteria that’s in that probiotic is the one that’s actually right for me? Now you can do all sorts of fancy testing and put labels on this and kind of explore this further if you want, but in my opinion, it’s a lot of resources, it’s a lot of time.

Chantel: And it’s expensive, it’s very expensive. So what kind of probiotic foods would you say, “Hey, I eat X, Y, Z and I really do better with this?”

Kristin Savory: Yeah, well let’s hold off still one minute. Let’s continue looking a little bit deeper into this probiotic material because there’s other pieces of it that’s really important for consumers to understand. We know that probiotic material, that’s a bacteria, right, and again going back to sixth grade science now, not seventh grade but sixth grade science, we would have these [inaudible 01:10:24] dishes and you had to keep that bacteria alive. Right? Do you remember doing that?

Chantel: Yeah.

Kristin Savory: Like mushrooms.

Chantel: I do. I always picked a really, I hated science, I had my degree in math, but I always picked like the smartest guy in science so I pretty much slept through science cause you were always partners with somebody so like that is one subject I feel I was so dumb in cause I was like, “Oh I’ll just trust you to do all the work.” And I made it fun and kind of made them laugh but didn’t do much.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, and regardless of what our participation was, most of us still remember, we had to feed that thing everyday, and we had to kind of keep track of it’s growth, right. So now your probiotic material is really no different. It’s a bacteria, that’s a living one celled or sometimes two celled organism that needs to be fed. Right? Lactobacillus acidophilus, that is an acid loving bacteria that lives on lactose. Okay? When you break that word down, lactobacillus, acidophilus, that means acid loving bacteria that must eat lactose. So first of all, if you’re dairy free, if you don’t have any lactose in your system, is that bacteria gonna thrive? No, because it needs to have lactose to perpetuate, to grow, to love, to move.

So one celled organism. If the food is not supplied, it will not proliferate. So that’s just within your system. But now let’s take a look at it in the bottle. Is there lactose, are they providing lactose for that organism to live in that bottle? Because keep in mind, they might’ve put two billion organisms in that capsule, but were those organisms fed? So by the time that that product is capsulated and then it goes to the warehouse and then it goes to the store and then it sits on the shelf.

Chantel: Or if order it from Amazon in the summer time and you know they leave it on your doorstep, and it’s 110 degrees outside.

Kristin Savory: Yeah, how many of those organisms are still alive by the time you open that bottle and start taking them? I just don’t think that’s cost effective, and I don’t believe that it is as supportive to the body as what we can do. Because what I would like to see happening is I would like to see your husband, you, myself, somebody’s child, proliferating the bacteria that’s in their system that’s working well. So the best way to do that is with fermented foods, and I agree that not all fermented foods come supernaturally to Americans, but some do. Pickles.

Chantel: Name some. Oh, pickles, I love pickles.

Kristin Savory: Pickles.

Chantel: You know what’s funny, my son always, like everyday he asks for a pickle. Like he loves [crosstalk 01:13:44].

Kristin Savory: You’re not getting the ones that are like sweet and sugared and all this other stuff, a really high quality pickle, that is perfect fermented food. Yogurt is a fermented food. Now again, we can’t buy the fruit on the bottom and the sugar all over it yogurt, we need to buy probably a plain flavored yogurt that doesn’t have a lot of sugar in it [crosstalk 01:14:11]. But that fermented food. Kefir, K-E-F-I-R, that’s a fermented yogurt drink. Again, not buying the sweetened version, vanilla, almond, chocolate flavored, but buying the plain kefir, and maybe adding a few blue berries or adding a few strawberries to it. That is a fermented food.

Depending on where you live in the country, I mean I live in Boulder, Colorado where there is an artisanal bread store on every corner and there’s a natural food store within two minutes walking distance everywhere all over town.

Chantel: Really?

Kristin Savory: Oh my goodness, come visit.

Chantel: You know what, [inaudible 01:15:01] Shawn Cooper, who used to work at our company, he moved there but he moved to Colorado but I’m wondering what city he was in. I have to ask him.

Kristin Savory: [inaudible 01:15:12] to tell you. Boulder and Denver are just mecca for …

Chantel: Natural, holistic.

Kristin Savory: Natural, holistic foods. It’s amazing. So we can even do [crosstalk 01:15:25] sourdough bread, if it’s made correctly, that’s a fermented food.

Chantel: Wow, awesome.

Kristin Savory: Now, I think it was this question, or maybe it was the question before where we were talking about dairy, cheese products can be a fermented product but what we need to look at is is it a slow aged dairy or is it a fast aged dairy? Slow aged dairy, so like your cheddar cheeses, those harder cheeses, those are challenging for low thyroid people. But low thyroid can get away with fast aged dairy. So anything that is cultured overnight. Butter milk, yogurt, kefir, cottage cheese, ricotta, special mozzarellas, very high quality mozzerallas. Low thyroid people can tolerate those. And they’re also a fermented food.

Chantel: Wow.

Kristin Savory: We just opened that door.

Chantel: Yes. Open up, maybe I should start having dairy again. Maybe this is exciting news cause I love dairy. [inaudible 01:16:42] it and it just, my number one goal right now is to just get my thyroid into functioning order. It has been such a pleasure talking to you, you are a wealth of wisdom and we’ll put in the show names, we’ll put your website there, and hopefully people will start listening to your podcast and we’ve just really enjoyed having you so thanks again for being on our show, it’s just been an absolute pleasure and hopefully, maybe we’ll have you back on again cause we have been, we didn’t even get to all the questions. I was like, we can’t, you saw how many we got. So hopefully we’ll have you on again but thank you so much and folks, we’ll see you next and if you have a question that you want answered, go to questions at chantelrayway.com and have a great day. Bye.