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133: Fight IBS by Identifying Food Intolerances, Parasympathetic Nervous State, and Will HCL and Digestive Enzymes Help Low Stomach Acid? - with Kezia Hall

November 11, 2019

Welcome back to the podcast! Today’s guest is Kezia Hall. She has an online nutrition practice helping women across the world use food as medicine. Women (and some men too) utilize her services to deal with their PCOS, IBS, chronic fatigue, bloating, depression, hormonal imbalance or excess weight. Enjoy!




To learn more about the principles of intermittent fasting, purchase Chantel's book, Waist Away: The Chantel Ray Way NOW by visiting

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***As always, this podcast is not designed to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any condition and is for information purposes only. Please consult with your healthcare professional before making any changes to your current lifestyle.***

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Well, welcome to the podcast, guys. This week, I have a special episode for you and you're actually going to get to listen to me being interviewed here. And so this is a podcast I did on the Waste Away podcast with Chantel Ray. And you guys are going to enjoy it. She asks me some great questions.
If you want to find out more about Chantel Ray, then you can see the links in the show notes. Otherwise, enjoy. And I'll speak to you next week.
Hey, guys, welcome to this week's podcast, and I'm so excited because we have an international guest is the host of the Gut Goddess podcast. She has a postgraduate diploma in nutritional science and practice. She's a member of the British Association of Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine BANT, and she's also a member of the Complementary and National Health Care Council. And she is all the way from England and she now lives in Scotland. And coming to us today is Keziah Hall. Welcome, Keziah.
Thanks so much for having me, Chantelle. I'm so excited to be on your show.
Well, you are one of our first international guests. Well, I'm on it. And I know that you personally have struggled with digestive issues and your weight since you were young. Can you tell us a little bit about your own wellness journey and how it led you to develop your super naturally healthy brand and gut goddess lifestyle?
Yeah, and it's similar to lots of people who end up becoming practitioners or, you know, working in functional medicine or nutrition or anything like that is I struggle with my own health since I was really young. I was one of those kids that was always at the doctor's and pediatricians having people look at me a little bit like I'm not quite sure why my one of my main memories of childhood is like banana flavored antibiotics. I just was went through so many of them and no one can really tell what was wrong with me. So that carried on as an adult and things just carried on getting worse. Never too bad light, you know, got to be grateful for certain things. Dody It was never I never thought I had Crohn's for a while, Crohn's disease. And I didn't have that. I maybe had other IBD irritable bowel disease and I never had any of those. But it got to the point probably in my early twenties when no one really knew what to do with me and I was really depressed. I've been diagnosed depressed by that point and with anxiety and also was just having really bad bowel issues to the point of incontinence. And I was just thinking, like, you know, you'd start your 20s and you're thinking, I want to travel and have fun and go out with my friends. But instead, to be honest, I spent a lot of time not wanting to leave the house in a lot of pain, feeling quite low and just wondering if this is the rest of my life. And then that kind of put me on a journey of the food that I ate. And slowly but surely I realized the old kind of saying that food can be medicine. And since then, I've just not really stopped well.
Well, if you were to pick three of your wellness tips to share with listeners that you would say these are the three things I did that really helped my gut, what would they be and why?
That's a great question. There's loads of things out there and there's lots of information out there around how you can heal your gut. But it's really important that you kind of cover some of the basics first, I think sometimes. So I would say for me and for any client that I was working with, one of the first things you want to look at and question is if you have any kind of food intolerances.
So meaning is there any foods that you're eating that your body just isn't loving, like is having a more inflammatory response or is maybe not being digested properly? And that's a really big deal, especially if this digestive issues, bloating bowel issues, kind of even skin issues, reflux those kinds of things. So food intolerances and I wouldn't even necessarily say you initially need to go and have an expensive test for this. The best thing to do would be a good old elimination diet. So that would be the first thing. The next thing was really to look at your stress levels. And I don't I often say this to clients and I get them kind of being like rolling their eyes at me like, yeah, whatever. But often we think of stress as being an emotional response. And I never would have said I felt emotionally stressed out, but my body was stressed out, if that makes sense. My cortisol was high, my adrenaline was running, my adrenals were on the go. And when your body is in that kind of sort of sympathetic, nervous state, it really struggles to digest and to create adequate amounts of stomach acid to release the digestive enzymes and bile in order for you to digest properly. And a lot of reason why people can get so bloated and uncomfortable or get really have a lot of wind. And all of these issues can often be because that digestive part in the stomach of with the stomach acid, the enzymes in the bile isn't may be as effective as it can be. And one of the easiest things you can do about that is when you eat is make sure that your body is in a parasympathetic nervous state, which you can easily do by just before you eat a meal or snack is just by taking some deep breaths or doing an old school.
Grace, I don't know if you did that growing up. We used to have a song that we. Before we ate, like doing all of those kinds of things can help kind of shift your nervous state. And then the other thing that I'd recommend for digestive issues would just be addressing your relationship with sugar. Again, that doesn't make me that popular when I chat to people about it. But really addressing that kind of sugar craving sweet tooth, that need for that sugar hit is really important, not just from an energy and maybe a weight perspective or a hormonal perspective, but actually from a digestive perspective as well. Because if you have a lot of sugar and a high sugar diet, that can sometimes feel some of the kind of bacterial imbalance that could be going on within your intestines, which could be contributing to those digestive issues. So those three things can hit those on the head. Then you can at you'll probably actually make a lot more progress than you would like.
Awesome. All right. Well, let me ask you, in my newest edition of my book, Waste Away, I talk about people don't have to deprive themselves when it comes to food, but everyone needs to decide for themselves what are their red light foods, yellow light foods, green light foods. And so for you, what are your red light foods? These are foods where you go, I feel terrible and I eat this. I just stay away from them completely. And then here's my yellow light foods. I don't feel great when I eat them, but I'll still have them every once in a while.
I love that system. That's a great idea in terms of just getting people to tune in to their own red light foods, you know, yellow and green ones. I would say for me, my red light foods I just don't touch would be like gluten. I just it just it used to upset my digestive system. And now because I've done a lot of healing, that it just makes me tired and a bit grumpy and it's just not with it. So that's just that's not even like, oh, I'll occasionally have a bit of bread as a treat type thing. I just don't bother. It's just I don't care. I don't want it similar with things like ingredients. If I see something that contains aspartame, MSJ, certain numbers, again, I know I'm actually just not going to like the food. So those are definite red lights. Yellow light foods for me would probably be dairy. I tend to avoid cows milk completely because it doesn't do me any good, hadn't hasn't done for a while. But things like butter I seem to tolerate quite well and I do really like cheese. So I won't eat cheese daily. But maybe like every couple of months, if there's a nice cheese board then you know, I do love some cheese. So those would be the foods that I know I can't eat loads of. They don't love me that much, but they love me a little bit.
That's funny. I'm the same way I like gluten for me is just absolutely off limits. It's a red line, but butter I, I actually actually butter for me as a green light. I feel great on butter, I feel great yellow light for me would be like I do really good with goat's milk. So like if you do good cheese I feel ok, but I do try to stay away from cows. Milk for me is like in between red light and yellow light. Like I'll do it every once in a while. Yeah I know. I don't feel great when I have it. No I'm there now. The question I ask all my guests take me through a normal day in the life of you. Like what did you eat yesterday. When did you eat it. Tell us kind of everything that happened yesterday for you.
OK, well I suppose this wouldn't be a normal day because yesterday I'd been sick at the start of the week had gotten the flu. So I was still recovering. So Thursday that my yesterday is normally a working day for me. So I. What did. I can't remember. I don't know. I can't remember what I had. I normally start the day with eggs. So I normally have like some sort of eggs with some sort of leftover vegetable. And yes, I think I scrambled them and just put it all in one sort of scramble together. And then I had a cocoa with like oil and some medicinal mushrooms kind of blended in with each other.
And then it was a case of but first I get up and I try and meditate for about ten minutes, ideally before my little boy's woken up. Or what if I've kind of handed him over to my the half and then it's kind of I'll go with, like, you know, getting children ready at the door, all of that sort of stuff. And then I work from home, from a home office and I see all my clients online and do consultations that way. And so then it's just a case of doing my commute to my office, which is at the bottom of my house, which is quite handy, and then getting started. And then a lot of the time, my best working rhythm is I tend to work really well until about one. And then I'll stop for lunch and then I'll spend time with my little boy and then I often start working and in the evenings the evening is when I tend to see my clients. So that tends to be how the rhythm of my day goes.
Yesterday was a little bit different. I'm still recovering, so I. I think I probably took a nap in the morning, which I don't normally do, but that would normally be the sort of flow of my day kind of work hard and short in the morning, take a break and then start again in the evening. And I'm normally in bed. I like to be in bed by about 10:00, half 10:00 at the latest. So I'm definitely an early morning person, not a night owl.
Awesome, well, I am going to jump right into our listener questions, find this from Destinee in Lincoln, which I don't even know where Lincoln is, but I was diagnosed with IBS in college. I go days without going to the bathroom and I constantly feel bloated and miserable. I take a fiber supplement every day, but it doesn't seem to help. How can I change my diet to relieve the bloating and constipation?
That's a great question. And I've worked with a lot of people who have come to me in a similar position where they wear their normal is having a bowel movement once a week. So know that there is loads that you can do. Destinee, I would probably refer back to what I was talking about before those three kind of well tips. Actually, if you can figure out, number one, if you have any food intolerances. And just because a lot of the time constipation I've found with clients and I'm not sure this comes up a lot in research, but from my experience, a lot of the time can be an issue sometimes with constipation, but other food intolerances also. So that really kind of explore that, maybe do an elimination diet and think, OK, let's take 30 days and avoid gluten really strictly and just see how I feel. So that would probably be the best place to start. The next thing it would be really looking at maybe introducing some more magnesium into your diet from things like green veggies. If you can tolerate those and things like cocoa powder, you can also get Epsom salts. And in the UK you can get your magnesium oil spray that you can spray onto your skin that can be really effective, is really gentle. And unless you on any blood thinning, blood thinning medications, wouldn't have any negative kind of interactions with that. So those tend to be my go to when people are constipated.
OK, this next question comes from Anonymous.
I have Hashimoto's and take armer thyroid. I listen to one of your podcasts and I heard that low stomach acid might be a cause of thyroid issues. And your guest on the podcast said that taking S.L and digestive enzymes might help having the low stomach acid. Whenever I take the HCO, my heart rate is very high and I start getting heart palpitations. I'm also low in iron as well. Should I take less HCO or less digestive enzymes or one or the other?
Anonymous is a great question. So when it comes to H sound to try digestive enzymes. Yeah, well, first of all, you might want to go back to your doctor and just check to see if you don't have anything like cold Plowright. Go on your stomach. Just in terms of if there is stomach acid and Hashimoto's, sometimes that can be this can sometimes indicate a more kind of bacterial infection going on in your stomach. So that's worth discussing with your kind of primary care provider. First, when it comes to HDL is a little bit of trial and error. I would really suggest starting really small some supplements out there that you might buy on Amazon or whatever else, sometimes humongous doses. So like six hundred and fifty milligrams or something. So I'd maybe start at a really small amount, like one hundred milligrams and go really slow. If you find that you consistently are getting kind of increased heart rate, you probably want to pull back. And I wouldn't take the scale or increase or take on a daily basis just because that could be having various could mean various things in terms of how it's affecting your heart rate. So maybe just focusing on the digestive enzymes without the could be really helpful because you actually some of this you're trying just to figure out and do a bit of detective work to figure out, OK, is it your stomach acid that's low or maybe your stomach acids? Actually, OK, but actually maybe it's your digestive enzyme secretion that's not great, or maybe it's your bile release that's quite poor and sluggish. And so that's what you're really wanting to find out. And with Hashimoto's, it can be for stomach acid, but it can also be your digestive enzymes and your bile. But really listen to your body. It's really important that any advice that you hear about, read about in a book, someone like me say it's shouldn't ever override what your body is telling you in terms of taking I'm just going to carry on taking shape because this chick online said I should carry on taking it. If you don't feel good taking it, then that is your body telling you something really, really important. So always listen to your body first above any expert that you hear about, because that's where you often get the truest information is when you really tune in more to what your body's saying, as opposed to something that you read about, which I know is easier said than done. But I hope that helps.
All right. This next question is from a girl named Judy, and she writes from her, Judy and my boyfriend, Dale. I love the lady who is on the queen of. Irwin's podcast and I have massive constipation, and I've been trying to read as much as I can on the topic of constipation, I do poop one time a day, but it's a very hard poop. I have read different articles about how often I should put some say after every meal, some say twice a day, some say three times a day, and some say once every other day is OK. My boyfriend says that once a day is fine, even though the poop is hard. He says he only poops once a day and it's fine. But what is the right answer?
I love the detail of this question. It's brilliant. Honestly, people, when I talk, talk with clients, they'll often be like, oh, a bit sheepish about talking about poo. And I'm like, guys, I'm the person to talk to about your poop. Don't worry. When it comes to kind of bowel frequency, shall we say this in the UK anyway, there's no unnecessary standard guideline. I'm not too sure if it's different in America, but in the UK in terms of what counts as constipation is quite broad. So from my perspective, when I'm working with people, I really want people to be pooping at least once a day. And in my opinion, I would say you're constipated if you're not pooping once a day. But it sounds like you're not having a good bowel movement even though you're having it once a day. So it sounds like for you, you probably are a little bit constipated still because you're not feeling like you're all done and dusted after you've been on the toilet. And that's a really important thing to be aware of. And I would almost say that ideally everyone is slightly different. But really, you want to be thinking maybe one to two bowel movements a day is really ideal. And a lot depends on how much you eat. If you're someone who eats a high quantity of food, you want to be expecting you to be almost having potentially more bowel movements. Whereas if you may be fasting or just are petite person and have quite small appetite, then you might not poop as much as that. But it sounds like for you and your body, you actually maybe need to be having might not be in the bowel movement, but it sounds like your quality of bowel movement needs to improve.
OK, this next question is from Marissa in Chattanooga, I'm thirty five now and I've had depression since I was a teenager.
I've been on different antidepressants for years, but I feel but I would really like to wean off my medicine when I eat clean. I feel so much happier, but I can't consistently stay off of sugar and carbs. I've heard that if I cut out the sugar and carbs out of my diet that this will help my depression. Any tips for being able to stay on this regime?
Marissa in Chattanooga.
OK, so yeah, what you eat if you struggle with mental health issues, there was a big gut meaning your kind of intestine and digestive system and kind of mind connection. So what you eat really does affect your mood and your mental well-being. So you're totally on it. Mercy in terms of, you know, you feel better when you kind of ditch some of the refined chords and refined sugars. But in terms of actually making that last in the long term, I often really suggest that people begin quite small. So often when people say read about things like, oh, if I address my relationship with sugar, that might really help with my depression, they tend to go quite all or nothing. So what I recommend and talk to people about is often that the best thing that you can do for your mental well-being and for your health and digestive health or your hormones or whatever it is that you're wanting to talk, it is to actually create habits that laughs and create a lifestyle shift. So you could not have sugar for a month and feel amazing. But the best thing that you could do for your body would be to not actually have sugar for like two or three years. And that would give your body so much room to heal and restore and rebalance. So I would really suggest that when it comes to you mentioned sugar and carbs, I would actually boil that down to maybe one thing, one item. So maybe at the moment, Mersa, you love your sodas and you just or orange juice or sugary drinks in some capacity. I would spend 30 days really focusing on getting that out of your diet and replacing it with something else, replacing it with your kind of sparkling water, more water, kombucha, all of these kinds of things really look at taking one food at a time and almost doing that kind of every month so that you're not getting trapped into this all or nothing. I have to be on it or I'm being good or being bad. You're actually going OK. I know for the rest of my life I want as good a mental health as I can have. So that means I need to accept the fact that I need to make this a lifestyle shift. So every month I'm going to zone. Right.
Instead of thinking I need to get rid of all the food, all the sugar, all the carbs, all the things, which is totally overwhelming. Everyone can do that for a couple of weeks, but we don't want to do it for twelve or twenty four months, really. So not down to OK, I'm going to focus on the soda for this month and then next month I'm going to focus on the fact that I always have a cake at three o'clock in the afternoon and then just go step by step. And I can guarantee you if you can commit to doing those small changes every month and every couple of weeks in a year's time, you will have transformed the way that you eat and you have actually done it in a way that is sustainable.
OK, last question from Melanie in Beaverton, it feels like all the people on your show blame all of everyone's systems. I'm sorry, it feels like all the people on your show blame all the problems. And on every article I have read blames all my symptoms on leaky gut syndrome. Lately, for the past year, I've felt really bloated, had brain fog and headaches and felt really tired. Even when I eat clean, I do have brain fog. I would say brain fog is my number one problem. Would you say that? What would you say is the best leaky good supplement that I can take? Melanie in Beaverton.
Hmm. There is lots of chatter about leaky gut and there is some tests and things that you could do.
But I would you could generally assume that if you have certain symptoms, then there might be some level of Liquica otherwise known as kind of intestinal permeability in terms of supplements. Well, the first thing, again, I might sound like a broken record when it comes to up. You want to remove anything that is perpetuating the problem. And so one of the first things that you want to look at again, food intolerances and sugar, those are not going to help your gut lining to heal and restore so that there's no supplement that is going to outdo the fact if you're eating dairy every day, when your gut and your gut lining finds that really inflammatory, no supplement is going to outdo that fact that you're having milk in your coffee three or four times a day.
So that's first thing. But equally, there are loads of great supplements out there that can really help you if you are aware of the other triggers that could be kind of contributing to this ongoing kind of intestinal permeability. So a really cheap and effective one for probably a good percentage of population would be al glutamine, which is an amino acid. So that can be really helpful at restoring the gut. I also really like what's it called marshmallow like Marshmallow Root, which is a horrible thing, and you can often find different mixes that will have glutamine and marshmallow, Slippery Elm, a certain type of licorice that will have like a whole nice blend. And those are often really great for like hiccuped kind of syndrome. You've got to double check that you don't have any certain people can't tolerate al glutamine very well because of certain genetic mutations.
That's a small set, the population. So you've got to check that through first with whoever your primary care provider is. But I'm a big fan of Al Glutamine, super affordable as accessible, and most people can tolerate it really well. And it's even better if you pilot together with some other great herbs that help soothe your gut lining.
And then how often would you recommend someone taking that out?
I would recommend. Well, I would often do with my clients is once we once the kind of dietary aspect was working for them and that had been sorted, I would often recommend probably like a good if you were getting like a mix of al glutamine with other things in it as well, like this different brands that will do different types of that. I'd probably recommend like two scoops of that a day. Or if you're just taking out glutamate, you probably want like a gram a day but split throughout the day. So maybe half a gram in the morning and half a gram in the evening, having it as a powder or the capsule, the equivalent of that in a capsule.
Awesome. And is there anything that you want to give away as a little gift to any of our podcast listeners?
Yeah, well, when I got emailed this, I was like, oh, this is a great idea.
So I had a look at my calendar and I thought I would give away six kind of mini consultations where we could get on the phone or some kind of online phone. And you could ask me a question, because so much of what we're talking about, even answering these questions a lot really depends on you, on what's going on with your body and your health history. And there's so much personalization. And that's really where the power and effectiveness comes from. If you want to see results with your gut health, with your energy, with your weight. Actually, it really comes down to a personalized approach.
So I'm offering six sessions, 50 minutes long. I'm not selling you anything. I'm not going to sell you any supplements, nothing like that. I literally want to spend 15 minutes with you and answer one question that you have that's going to help you. Just take this to the next level, because you probably have read a lot of stuff, read a lot of articles and blogs and those kinds of things.
And probably what you need to get results faster is actually something that is more tailored to what is going on with your body.
So I'd like to give away six of those awesome and tell listeners where they can learn more about you and find out more information on you and follow you.
Well, the best place to find me in day to day is probably on Instagram or Facebook. So you can find me at Supan actually healthy or just search Kedzie. A whole case that I am. Well, there's not many Casias on the Internet, actually, so I'm easy to find. So you could find me on that Instagram. You can D.M. me get in touch that way or you can head over to Keziah whole dot com and you can find out all my information and blogs and all that sort of stuff. And I also have a quiz, the goddess quiz, which can be really helpful and fun at helping you figure out what's going on in your body. But if you've been listening to this and you have any questions or anything, I'd love to hear from you.
Awesome. I love the picture of you. You have the cutest picture. Is that that's you, right? That's on your front website with the chocolate spoon in your thumb. And you've got some amazing recipes like how is that cherry chocolate smoothie that you have on your it on your website?
Oh, super tasty. I mean, often people are surprised because people when when you say I'm a holistic nutritionist, people often assume that you just eat celery all day. But I love food and I love good food. And I you know, I'm not one of these people. It's like, oh, yeah, for my birthday, just stick a candle on a piece of celery and I'll be happy. No, I want a piece of cake. So a lot of the recipes that I have are me trying to go, OK, to make this really to make this sustainable, I need to have some nice things, like I want to have nice breakfasts or nice treats when it comes to my birthday or family gatherings. And that's kind of why I've got lots of recipes for some tasty smoothies, too, because lots of my clients really struggle to get in and out vegetables. And so that's a really easy way of doing that. And then also like cakes and treats. But when you do want to have a little something sweet, you don't want it to be filled with no refined sugar, fructose, all the all the osis. So, yeah, cutover and find a recipe with some great ones in there. I always have one of them kind of stocking up my freezer for now.
Well, I wish you lived closer because I would love to spend time having a cup of coffee at a it so we can have one of your your paleo treats that you have on there. Is that it? So it's the majority of your what you eat on a regular basis. Is it more of a paleo lifestyle?
Yeah, I would say I'd probably describe it as like paleo ish. Ish.
That's Majo. Yeah, I'm not.
I used to be when I was really healing my gut and doing a bit more intensive work, probably about five or six years ago, I would have been much more strict in terms of quite paleo or I followed the diet for a while. I don't know if you've heard of that. The Gut in Psychology Syndrom Diet by Dr. Natasha McBryde. Campbell, I think so. I did that, I don't know, six or seven years ago. But since then and since a lot of my health issues have kind of eased off a little bit, I would say paleo ish. I feel better not eating grains generally, but sometimes just like tonight, I had like blinis with like a chickpea pasta. So just from ès perspective and my body can kind of feel it still feels good doing that.
And I'll occasionally have gluten free grains if I'm out or if it's just easier, but generally paleo ish with some butter in there and oats and therefore. Sometimes awesome.
Well, it's been such a pleasure having you. And next time I go to Scotland, I will definitely give you.
Yeah, do it. We'll have a cup of tea. Yes. Maybe some whiskey, if you like. Yes.
All right. Well, if you have a question that you want answered, go to questions at Chantel Ray Dotcom. We'll see you next time. Bye bye.

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