Kristen and Elizabeth discuss the importance of balancing Mind, Body and Soul. They offer simple, real world examples of how to modify diet and movement as well as self assessment to enable us to continue on the path to a healthy, happier life.
One of the important discussions in this podcast is what the Vagus Nerve is and how this one nerve can affect both your emotional and physical health.
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[00:00:08.010] – Viking Spokesman
Welcome to the Med Mentality Podcast. Your hosts, Kristen Latendre and Elizabeth Snedeker, welcome you into their homes and lives to share the knowledge and experience from their many years spent in both preventative and conventional medicine.
[00:00:20.970] – Kristen Letendre
I personally am a physician assistant. For many years, I did a surgical residency. I was in surgery. My name is Kristen, by the way. And then I went into private medical practice, and now I’m more into preventive medicine.
[00:00:39.150] – Elizabeth Snedeker
Elizabeth my name is Elizabeth, and I’m also as Kristen said, a Physician Assistant. And I’ve worked in Family Medicine, and then I did pediatrics as well, ER medicine. And now I’ve shifted focus mostly into preventative medicine as well. So that’s where Kristen and I kind of have common interests.
[00:01:04.870] – Viking Spokesman
Kristen and Elizabeth are both highly educated, credentialed medical practitioners. However, the advice, recommendations, and possible treatments presented and discussed in this podcast are for educational use only. Do not undertake any treatment or recommendation discussed in this podcast without seeking medical advice from your own physician. The information shared in the Med Mentality podcast may not be construed as personal medical advice.
[00:01:32.270] – Kristen Letendre
Good morning, everyone. This is our second podcast of Med Mentality, and I’m Kristen here with Elizabeth, and today we are going to talk about good versus evil. How was your weekend, Elizabeth?
[00:01:49.090] – Elizabeth Snedeker
It was great. I went to look at some planes that are for sale. I’m working on for those that everyone, I’m sure doesn’t know, this is not me I’m getting. I’m working for my private pilot’s license, so I went to look at a couple of planes so that I can finish my training in the plane I’m going to fly.
[00:02:09.270] – Kristen Letendre
This is so cool. And then she’s going to come and pick me up.
[00:02:13.610] – Elizabeth Snedeker
How about you? How was your weekend?
[00:02:16.050] – Kristen Letendre
It was nice. I went out with some friends. I was out kind of late last night, so Elizabeth is not my favorite person right now because she wanted to do this early. Two cups of coffee, so I’m okay.
[00:02:31.010] – Elizabeth Snedeker
[00:02:32.530] – Kristen Letendre
So today we want to talk about good versus evil. And we always encompass mind, body, and soul. And obviously good versus evil, positive versus negative. However you want to put it, you have to have a balance because unfortunately, the positives don’t always weigh out the negatives. So at least if you could get a balance, it would be better. For example, like in your mind, if you’re having down days, depression, anxiety, you obviously want to make sure you also have happy days and positive days in your body if nobody’s perfect all the time. So if you have bad days, food days, junk food days, you want to make sure you balance that out with exercise and eating well and your soul. We all had these self deprivation days, sabotage days, but you need to practice meditation and positive thinking to balance that out as well.
[00:03:39.190] – Elizabeth Snedeker
Just kind of reiterating and expanding on that, say, for your diet. We all have cheat days. Every good versus evil in the moderation between is going to be different for every person, right? Different for thresholds, for goals, for all of that. So how many cheat day and sitting down and actually being present with yourself and thinking about this, about where your boundaries are for these mind, body and soul, or diet, exercise and mental health, how to actually sit down. And I always encourage my patients to do this when we’re doing HRT even, is to keep a journal as you’re going through this and say, today was a good day. I did X, Y and Z for working out. I did X, Y and Z for my diet. I did X, Y and Z for my mind, whether that be meal prepping for your diet, whether that be making sure you made it to the gym or meditation, and if you’re religious, you went to church that day or you did a Bible study or something like that. So sitting down and actually, I think the first step for people who are looking to do to evaluate this area in their life is to sit down and really get a plan together for how you’re going to work out the balance.
[00:05:09.640] – Elizabeth Snedeker
Because the bad days will come. That’s just the nature of life. But if you can be intentional about having the good days, about what you’re going to do to ensure your good days, I think that’s a good place to start.
[00:05:23.590] – Kristen Letendre
Yeah, absolutely. And that carries through to, again, your body. We always go back to the gut because that is the main source of where things stem from good versus evil in your gut, too. Good bacteria versus bad bacteria. And if that bad bacteria takes over, they call it like gut dysbiosis. So they give prebiotics, probiotics, which help to keep that good bacteria balanced. And again, this is in every, even with hormone replacement, you have to have a balance. You can’t have too much testosterone, too much estrogen, too little estrogen progesterone. Everything has to be balanced for you individually. So with the gut, prebiotics help to make more probiotics and the probiotics, again, help to produce that good bacteria. So the bad bacteria or the fungus or overproduction of acid, parasites don’t take over because that good bacteria is going to keep it together. And I’m a very visual person, that’s how I learn. So have a little example for you. Let’s say there’s a lining in your stomach which protects and keeps everything in check. So that acid and everything in your stomach has time to break down, everything. But let’s say for some reason this lining, this thin lining gets weak over time.
[00:06:52.770] – Kristen Letendre
Wear and tear, like you have with anything, wear and tear of your joints over time causes issues, the cartilage decreases and you get the chronic joint pains. Same thing, wear and tear in your stomach from either too many anti-inflammatories, constant antibiotic use, stress, other medications, you know, all of this is a wear and tear on that stomach. So when that happens, you get something called leaky gut, which is that lining breaking down and all this bad bacteria or bad toxic things that would have been taken care of in the stomach leaks out into areas they shouldn’t be. So again, let’s say this is your stomach lining and all of a sudden, not to be gross, but this is causing a leaky gut going to other areas where it shouldn’t. And then it’s like a ripple effect. You get symptoms, you don’t feel good, you could that could trigger autoimmune diseases because what is that? Like we said last podcast, autoimmune disease is the body attacking itself. So if this foreign material, so to speak, should not be in other areas, the body is attacking itself and causing destruction.
[00:08:10.350] – Elizabeth Snedeker
And not only that, not only leaking out into other areas, but also you have to think about how many times have maybe not you or someone you know had stomach issues that started first and then a plethora of other problems come afterwards. Because like we’ve said before, the Vagus Nerve, Kristen and I talk pretty extensively about this just when we talk, the Vagus Nerve is a main nerve that runs through your body down into your gut. And so whenever emotional issues happen for you and you say, oh, that’s knocked me, I feel it in my gut, you have that feeling. Your Vagus Nerve is connected, it comes from your brain, goes down through your body. That’s how you feel and that’s how you process. And a lot of your neurotransmitters are made in your gut for happiness. Dopamine and a lot of that hormone balance for how we feel is responsible in our gut. And so protecting that gut is very important. Protecting the, Kristine talked about what really helps protect the lining to keep it thick and healthy so the prebiotics, probiotics, not overdoing it with meds, just like she said, and keeping your stress to a minimum so that you don’t develop ulcers and things like that.
[00:09:45.480] – Elizabeth Snedeker
And where I was going, that is so many patients I know say I have all these stomach troubles and whenever they do endoscopy, all they really find is gastritis. Well that’s inflammation of your gut lining because of the issues that we’ve allowed to thin that lining and then cause inflammation. So not only leaking out to where it shouldn’t be, but just that inflammation of that gut is going to keep that Vagus Nerve irritated, which is connected to our mental health. It’s just the gut is so very important and I don’t feel like that is conveyed enough in conventional medicine.
[00:10:25.210] – Kristen Letendre
Yeah, absolutely. And again the next part because we always try to talk about mind, body and soul and how habits and issues start from early childhood. These issues of depression, anxiety, which can be caused by a leaky gut or just bad gut health in general, but it could be the reverse too. They could also start from a young age and then cause gut problems. I have a few examples. I always noticed my surroundings and pay attention to things. I was in the gym one day and this kid couldn’t have been more than like two years old and the mom left her in, you know, the daycare area. This kid is hysterical, like hysterical crying, and my heart is breaking her. So I got up once and I walked in there and I’m watching the caregiver and I’m like, oh, I’m like, I feel so bad for her. And she’s like, yeah, she just misses her mother. But not doing anything to comfort this kid, just sitting there. So I continued my workout. Now the kid is dry heaving. Now I’m about to go and put this kid on my lap and comfort her. So I look at the girl again and she must have saw I was annoyed.
[00:11:48.280] – Kristen Letendre
So she went and she went over to the little girl and she put her on her lap and she was like showing her and watching TV. Instantaneously the girl stopped crying. That’s all she needed was a little reassurance. But that anxiety level that that poor child went through, it was not necessary. I’m not saying kids don’t ever cry or get upset, but that was not necessary. And now again, I’m being extreme. But just to drag the point now that anxiety, that kid might grow up with like abandonment issues or that kid might grow up with knowing she can’t rely on someone. Someone’s always going to leave. This is all where it comes from. Another example, I had started a jump roll theme in my kid’s elementary school a few years ago. And there was like some picking, bullying, going on and I can’t stand that. I am a personal trainer also. So I brought in the boxing gloves and the mitts because boxing really brings out a lot of emotions. I’ve had patient clients cry just from boxing because of those deep issues that they have and they don’t even realize it. So I had those 50 kids in the class.
[00:12:54.100] – Kristen Letendre
I had every single one of them come up. I’m like, come on, hit me if you want to tell me something that’s bothering you. These kids broke down into tears. I don’t like when people make fun of my weight or I’m very angry or my parents fight all the time and they’re hitting me. It broke my heart. These are issues that these kids have and are definitely going to affect them throughout their life because they weren’t dealt with.
[00:13:24.450] – Elizabeth Snedeker
And I feel like childhood developmental psychology is now becoming more of a, thank God, a spotlight in America because our youth are having such mental health issues. You see it every day, or I do, at least where from places that we do continuing medical education like Medscape. They send me stuff all the time that says especially teens when they start teen teenagers is just a hard time. It’s at an all time high for mental health issues for our country, and I’m sure the pandemic did a lot for that. To Kristen’s point, whenever that isolated incident can happen, and children can get over that. But whenever it becomes a pattern in their life that their needs are not met, when it becomes a pattern it is a problem. I did a medical mission trip to Haiti and we visited orphanages and when we walked in, I expected to hear crying and, you know, because kids cry, you know. This was a birth to five year old orphanage. It was silent in the nursery, completely silent. And there was like, I don’t know, 50 beds in there. And I remember talking, it was early, I was in PA school at the time when I went.
[00:14:53.310] – Elizabeth Snedeker
I remember asking, why don’t they cry? Why aren’t they you know, why aren’t they crying or up, you know, asking to be held? She said, they know better at this point, and they know because there’s two caretakers in there for 50 children, and so they know that their crying is not going to get their needs met, their immediate needs, those childhood baby needs. So those children, that’s all I could think about was what kind of problems they’re going to grow up with. I mean, thank God they’re in an orphanage and their physical needs are being met, but their emotional needs – it is so much deeper, and to not have those dealt with brings us even subconsciously, as we grow up, more like, oh, we got over that, but it’s in our relationship. It’s how we talk to ourselves. It’s how we raise our own children. If you don’t deal with that, if you didn’t have the best childhood and you could really look back and think, well, I had an okay childhood. I thought, I won’t get too much into my personal childhood, but there are things that I have seen in my relationships that with sitting down and meditating and evaluating, it stems back to some things in my childhood that were not ideal.
[00:16:13.010] – Elizabeth Snedeker
As far as my attachment, the attachment styles that I developed because of that. So again, sitting down and being intentional about your mental health and looking at where your issues are and looking back to see where that may come from in your childhood. Yeah.
[00:16:36.850] – Kristen Letendre
And honestly, nobody’s childhood is perfect. No parent is perfect. It doesn’t happen that way. But the whole point is to realize things in yourself, learn how to deal with them. Self analyze. Analyze how you grew up. If your parent was an only child and lost their parent, one of their parents at a young age, that’s going to affect them, and they were kind of on their own, so might they be a little colder to their children because they didn’t have that? Absolutely. Or might they go the other way and smother their kids with love because they didn’t have that. But there’s a reason why people act the way they act, which is what we keep instilling. Just get to know yourself, mind, body and soul. That’s all we really want to discuss today. We are going to discuss Next podcast again, following all the issues. Reflux. Everyone says, oh, it’s acid reflux. It’s too much acid in your stomach. But is it? Or is it too little acid in your stomach? Which blew my mind. But we’ll discuss that next podcast. So we hope you’ll tune in. We will be having more direct interaction with people soon, as soon as we get a few of these under our belts.
[00:17:56.850] – Kristen Letendre
And I guess that’s all I have to say, Elizabeth.
[00:18:02.020] – Elizabeth Snedeker
Yes. And next time, we’ll keep going.
[00:18:05.610] – Kristen Letendre
All right. Bye, guys. Bye.
[00:18:08.890] – Viking Spokesman
This podcast is sponsored by Sam Ridgeway and Viking Alternative Medicine. Please be sure to subscribe to the Med Mentality podcast to be notified of our next episode. Thank you for joining us.