About John Douillard, DC
Dr. John Douillard shares his clinical experience and Ayurvedic medicine principles from luminary Deepak Chopra, MD about the importance of eating seasonally, meal timing, meditation, dairy and gut microbes.
Dr. Douillard has published over 400 health videos and articles, has written six books, numerous health DVDs and CDs and has formulated his own line of organic health care products.
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Show Notes :
02:24 Dr. Douillard’s Ayurvedic Medicine Journey: He became intrigued with Ayurvedic medicine during chiropractic college, where he studied acupuncture and Chinese medicine as well. There was not much in the way of resources in the 1980s in the US for those who wanted to know more. He kept digging. In 1986 he went to India for a 2 vacation. He was then invited to stay in India and learn their traditional system of medicine. He met Deepak Chopra and was invited to run Chopra’s Ayurvedic centers, which he did for 8 years. His job was to learn new Ayurvedic therapies, bring them to the clinics and also train doctors. He has had his own practice in Boulder CO since 1994.
05:07 Incorporating Ayurveda into Your Life: Ayurveda means the science of life. It is about how to live your life in harmony with the natural cycles. We tend to live against the grain of those cycles. A deer dies when it eats out of season. Should we ignore the seasons? Ayurveda allows us to understand our own nature and how to live in harmony with nature. Dr. Douillard does not look at it as an Indian system, but it is more of a universal system of medicine that happens to come from India.
06:56 Where Did Westerners Go Wrong? We have to continue the technological side of food to feed the people of the planet. We now recognize how vulnerable the microbiome is to stress, feelings, and foods. If your food won’t go bad, your gut bugs won’t eat it. Dr. Douillard’s focus is proving ancient wisdom with modern science. Ayurveda talks about eating in a relaxed way, looking for ways to fill your life with joy, love and happiness. Our good microbiome bugs become depleted by stress or watching stressful events on TV. Our good microbiome bugs make our neurotransmitters, support our immune systems and impact every physiological function. We need to examine the foods we eat, the way we cook it, and the kinds of stress to which we are exposed.
13:13 Motivating Us To Make Changes: People do not understand that a few simple processes can be profound. Nor do they know that there is solid science behind it. We turn to western medicine first. Things are changing. If something is truly good for you, it should be enjoyable. Most of the dietary advice for the past 30 years has been wrong. We have become hardened to new advice. Ayurveda has been around for 5,000 years, so it is time tested.
16:13 Seeking Answers in Europe: Europeans have a different microbiome diversity than in the US. To study this, 10 participants had their microbiomes tested before and after they went to Europe for the summer. Half of the group took the probiotic ProBioMax from Xymogen and the other half took nothing. Results are still being processed. In Europe Dr. Douillard and his wife went to places like those where the first cheeses of Europe were made and blogged extensively about cheese and how it is made. Most American cheese is made with GMO funguses. If you do not want this, you need to consume organic kosher cheese. Organic prevents use of GMOs and kosher prevents using the rennet from the calf. If your organic kosher cheese is raw, you are getting great bacteria for your microbiome. Paneer Ayurvedic cheese is made with a natural fermentation process and is almost the same as original cheese still being eaten in the mountains of Europe.
20:31 Dairy and Gluten Sensitivity: People have problems with dairy and gluten because they do not digest the proteins very well due to the reduction of digestive fire. Processed dairy is even more challenging to digest. Dairy cows in Europe are grass fed free in high mountain meadows. If you think that you are lactose intolerant and that you cannot eat dairy, get some Organic Valley whipping cream and organic skim milk. Eat the whipping cream and see how you do. If you have issues with the whipping cream, you do not have lactose intolerance and you do not have a dairy/casein issue. You have a gallbladder issue, which is very common. There is nothing but fat in the whipping cream. In the skim milk, there is lactose and casein. The old European cheese making process converts the lactose to lactic acid so it is benign. The casein is broken down in the aging and culturing of the cheese. Whey cheese, like ricotta and geitost, is like mother’s milk. It contains no casein.
26:36 Digestion: Dr. Douillard tries to teach people how to troubleshoot themselves so they are treating the right issue. If you cannot digest well, you don’t detoxify well. You can take all of the hard to digest foods out of your diet. If you are still having issues, there may be other things at play, like mercury, heavy metals and environmental pollutants which are all fat soluble and your body should be able to detoxify them. If you have poor digestion, you may not be able to adequately detoxifying, setting you up for a toxicity issue down the road.
30:04 The Importance Timing: In Europe and Asia, people have their largest meal in the middle of the day. Studies have shown that our taste buds work best in the middle of the day. Vegetables are most nutritionally potent in the middle of the day. There are cycles in nature. The middle of the morning is the muscle cycle. Muscles are stronger in the morning for physical labor. In the middle of the day, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. our digestive fire is strongest. Between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., the nervous system kicks in and the brain demands fuel. Inadequate brain fuel explains why many of us crash in the afternoon. A big relaxing meal in the middle of the day may help this and bring you into harmony with the natural cycles. Eating a large meal in the evening forces the liver to digest food rather than detoxify as you sleep. The later you go to bed, the more you disturb the natural detoxification cycle. Eat with the seasons. We can live in a high tech world and still be connected to nature. The word supper came from the word support or soup. It was meant to be a small supplemental meal.
37:08 Three Season Dieting: Summer accumulates heat. We want to dissipate heat from our bodies. Apples are cooling and fibrous, flushing our digestive tract, cooling us. Watermelons and pomegranates are cooling and flushing. In winter, dryness accumulates. We shift to a high fat and high protein diet. We shift to a low fat diet and high carb diet in the spring. Each season of eating lasts 4 months. Our microbes shift naturally because of this.
40:53 Dr. Douillard’s Favorite Herb or Nutrient: Manjistha is a lymphatic de-stagnater. The first thing that goes south in our digestive system is our lymphatic system. If your lymph is congested, your drains are clogged and the toxins in your body are going to default to your liver, taking out your bile and digestion.
41:48 One Health Tip for America: Eat your biggest meal in the middle of the day. Also, meditate to handle stress. Meditation timing, in conjunction with calm times in nature would be sunrise and night, but whenever you can shut down your nervous system and calm your mind, just do it.
Mike Mutzel: I am super excited today. We’re going to talk about Ayurvedic medicine, gut bacteria, the seasonality of food with Ayurvedic medical expert, Dr. John Douillard. Dr. Douillard is the founder of LifeSpa clinic in Boulder, Colorado, which is an Ayurvedic and Panchakarma center. He has a website loaded with great information, so I encourage all of you to check that out. He has over 200 videos, great blogs and a lot of interactive group cleanse, and much more. So, it’s lifespa.com is the link to that. A little bit more about Dr. John so you can get to know him a little bit better: He earned his doctor of chiropractic from Los Angeles College of Chiropractic Medicine, and a graduate studies in Ayurvedic medicine at the World Center of Ayurveda in New Delhi, India. He’s been married for over 26 years and a father of six children. So Dr. John, welcome.
Dr. John Douillard: Thanks Mike. Good to be here.
Mike Mutzel: Let’s talk about how you fell in love with Ayurvedic medicine and holistic medicine. What sort of life experiences pushed you towards that road?
Dr. John Douillard: Well, it sort of goes way back. For some reason, I was in chiropractic college, I was studying acupuncture, Chinese medicine, and I heard the word, “Ayurveda,” and I just was so intrigued by the word and I just had to know more about it. There wasn’t a whole lot of Ayurveda in the 1980 in the US at all, so I just kept digging and digging, and finally in 1986, went to India for a two-week or three-week vacation (something like that), and got invited to stay in India and learn their traditional system that has been kind of like a real clinical setting, like follow the sun kind of a thing. I had a practice in Boulder, Colorado; I closed it and came back a year and a half later, and somebody I didn’t even know was driving my car, all my stuff in my clinic was all over in different parts of Boulder and tried to piece it back together. When I was there in India, I met Deepak Chopra, he wanted me to come back and run his new Ayurvedic center; that was in 1986. I ran his center for a year and then came here to Boulder in 1994. I have been here ever since, so kind of meant to be, I guess.
Mike Mutzel: Yeah, that’s fantastic. So, this two-week trip turned into a life-changing experience. Did you go back for graduate work shortly after that?
Dr. John Douillard: I did. Interesting, I spent a year and a half here. The first time I came back, I met my wife who is from Sta. Barbara. She was there with her family on business, and met her, came back to the states, got married to her, brought her back to India, and we lived in India for a little while longer when I was in training. I went back and forth many times. That was sort of my job – go back to India, learn stuff, come back in about six Ayurvedic center when I was with Deepak Chopra, and my job was sort of implement this new Ayurvedic practices or treatments or therapies or whatever, and my job was also to train all the medical doctors to learn Ayurvedic medicine, as well as chiropractors all over back then. I was like the only chiropractor they allowed in, and I sort of kind of forced the door open so they then allow more chiropractors. There’s some notion that that was only for medical doctors, which changed sort of quickly. But anyway, that was my job – to train the doctors in Ayurvedic medicine and to bring the new therapies to Ayurvedic clinic, which is a great job creating experience. I was just learning so much so fast through all that experience is amazing.
Mike Mutzel: Wow, that’s fantastic. Let’s talk about that experience and more on the educational component. When a new patient comes to you, they obviously have found your blog or referred from another patient. How do you describe what Ayurvedic medicine is and how do they incorporate the principles into their life?
Dr. John Douillard: Well, I look at Ayurveda as a science of life. That’s what it means. “Ayur” means life; “veda” means science; thus, the science of life. So, it’s really about how to live your life in harmony with the natural cycles that exist first by self. I mean, we’re all connected to these cycles, natures connected to these cycles, and we choose to, unfortunately, live against the grain of those cycles. I don’t necessarily look at when I’m in practice that I actually either convince or educate my patients that they’re going to learn something weird, new, Indian. It’s really such a logical system of nature. I just sort of blogged a week or so, a week or half ago, about a study that showed that if a deer, for example, were to eat bark (they eat bark in the winter and they live in the summer) – if the deer were to eat bark in those summer and it lives in the winter, it would create such a level of indigestion that it could actually kill the deer because they don’t have the microbes. The microbes change so dramatically from one season to the next. They don’t have the microbes to digest them at the season, so if a deer dies when they eat out of season, what does that mean for us? I mean, obviously, we’re not herbivores, we have different rules, but does that mean we can completely ignore the seasons, and that’s what Ayurveda is. It’s a system of medicine that allows us to understand our own nature, have a live with harmony with nature, and really bring our body back into balance. So, I don’t look at it as an Indian system really at all; I look at it as a universal. I was even taught that it was more of a universal system of medicine; it just happens to come from India, but by no means it is Indian.
Mike Mutzel: Perfect. Where do you think we went wrong with that? Are we just trying to outsmart Mother Nature as westerners here and using technology to our advantage? We can have frozen blueberries on Christmas eve, for example. Where do things go wrong in your opinion?
Dr. John Douillard: I hope that it comes full circle and someway all the technology and everything, because obviously, with the population on the planet growing, we have to continue the technological side of food. It’s almost seems impossible to support feeding the planet in that way. On the flipside of that, you have this total new understanding of the microbiome and how important that is, and how it’s delicate and vulnerable the microbes are to your stress, to your feelings, to what you’ve literally been watching on TV, to the foods you eat, to the processed foods that we eat, are killing the bugs. The stuff on the shelf of your refrigerator, your bugs won’t eat them, that’s why it doesn’t go bad, so we seem to have no problem eating stuff that’s been in the fridge for six months. We’re putting things inside of ourselves that our own microbes won’t even touch, and I’m really fascinated by the whole microbiome thing. I got ours on our website as sort of proving ancient wisdom with modern science, and that’s sort of proving ancient Ayurvedic principles, and it doesn’t have to be Ayurvedic, as long as it’s tied to nature, we’re going to try to prove it with modern science and the idea of the whole microbiome thing is so fascinating because the more we learn about these bugs, and then when you get stressed out, your good bugs go south, your bad bugs go north. We know that your bugs can affect your mood, your energy. They’re totally susceptible to your environment, and this is what Ayurveda talked about – you should eat in a relaxed way, you should be very what’s called “Sattvic” or looking for ways to fill your life with joy, love and happiness. It sounds a little fluffy, but watching CNN and watching people being killed and bombarded with stress every day, we have science now that shows that your good bugs go south and they make your neurotransmitters, they support your immune system, and they use about every physiological function that we have. We begin to look in the wall, maybe they were right. They didn’t know that there were bugs in there thousands of years ago, but they knew that the lifestyle that’s supported optimal health was a Sattvic or life-supporting, loving, giving, caring way of living, and we have created sort of just the opposite. So, it’s just as fascinating kind of a wakeup call for us to go – wait a minute, maybe we really need to take a second and look at the kind of things that we eat, the way we cook our food, the kinds of stress we expose ourselves to, because the writing on the wall is that that is taking out our microbiology, which does all the heavy listing.
Mike Mutzel: I love that – proving ancient wisdom with modern science. That’s a great quote right there, and I can really resonate with what you said because these are principles that I adhere, too, myself, but I’ve discovered them through different light. We recently had Raphael Kellman on the show; he’s the author of “The Microbiome Diet,” and again, he’s a western-trained physician and really gets into that energy and spirituality. He recommends turning off the TV, the internet, Facebook, your mobile devices when you’re eating, but also, think positive thoughts and think about when you’re chewing and eating food that you’re really fueling your healthy gut microflora, sending them happy positive messages and really viewing the food as fuel for these beneficial bugs. So, any comments?
Dr. John Douillard: That’s an Ayurvedic principle. That was talked about – word for word – has been written and documented as an Ayurvedic principle 5,000 years ago. That’s what so phenomenal about it. That’s why I love the science because the more as we are all about proving this ancient wisdom because somehow, I don’t even know how they knew how important that was, and now we have the science to back it up. We know 10 years ago or 50 years ago, that was like, “Really, I’ve got to sit here and think positive thoughts while eating my food. C’mon, really. I can watch TV and do my computer errands in my cellphone at the same time while I’m eating my food.” It was interesting. When I came back from India, we had an Ayurvedic center, we had people; they would come, they would learn to meditate and do yoga and breathing, and do these really amazing Ayurvedic therapies, go on to retreat for a week and it’s always at the end of the week. A lot of folks had cancer and pretty serious issues, and I say to them, “What was the most important thing you learned here while you’re here this week,” and this is back in the early 80s and mid-80s, learning yoga and all this was really new, and meditation was really new. What I heard the most from these people – many of them were terminally ill – was that I learned how to stop, take time, relax, and eat my food. They would tell me: “Food was like a gas station, I come in, fuel up, and go.” And I was just always blown away by that, that that was the most, of all these amazing, very expensive things that they did, that was their takeaway and that’s something they can all do, but we don’t do. But traditional cultures – even when I just spent some time in Europe doing such study there on the microbiome and their raw cheeses stuff really is taken by. You walk into a restaurant in Europe anywhere, or I was in the really remote parts of the Austrian Alps and Italian Alps, and it’s quiet like everybody’s whispering, everybody’s completely silent. It was just amazing how much respect, and still, absolutely, as you all know, from 12 o’clock till 2, every shop closes and everybody goes, everybody’s eating, and it’s such an important. The best part of the day is reserved for taking time to eat their most important meal of the day. It’s fascinating how we become. Hopefully, this somebody’s research will help reeducate us.
Mike Mutzel: Oh, absolutely. And I would love to dive more into your Europe trip, but before we move on, why do think that people have this perception that if they spent $1,500 in some sort of elaborate, maybe it’s a medication or series of IVs. Nothing’s wrong with IVs, nothing’s wrongs with medications or interventions, but this simple, inexpensive free techniques that they can implement in their own living room, like you said, by turning off the TV and the Wi-Fi and all these other things and just eating mindfully. Because it is inexpensive, we don’t have that perceived value that it’s going to do something for our body. What have you found in your experience to really motivate people to make these very simple, inexpensive changes?
Dr. John Douillard: I think that, partly, is education. People don’t know the value as what I try to do on my blog. I try to get people to realize that some of these simple things can be really profound and there’s really good science behind it. I think that we are all been indoctrinated that modern medicine is the way and it’s still a very strong canon as how many people think. Doors are opening to accepting alternative and lifestyle, yoga, breathing and medication as viable ways to help not have to go to the medical doctor. Things are definitely changing rapidly, and I’ve been doing this since I graduated in chiropractic college in ‘84, so I’ve been doing this for a long time, and I’ve watched the change albeit really slow. It is changing, but I think, really, the key in my mind is educating people to a way of life that they actually prefer and enjoy, so it’s not something that they have to do. A lot of folks think, “Oh, I got to do that and I got to do this. I have to do, and I have to do.” If you have to do a bunch of stuff, chances are we’re not going to do it, but if I like to do something, I’m going to do it. And what I try to get to do is get folks the taste of what it feels like to live with the cycles going down streams. You don’t have to paddle the boat that much. All you got to do is sort of steer; you go the current pushing you and finishing your day feeling the same energy as you started. You don’t feel exhausted or wiped out at the end of your day. I want people to taste what’s like to live in harmony with nature, the current behind you. It’s like, “People like that.” And I go like, “I like to feel better, so therefore, I want to continue this way of life,” and that’s what I feel is important education, and introducing them to an experience that is doable, not bombarding them with so many things to do that they overwhelm them and they feel overwhelmed by it and just give up on it all, but to actually give them bite-sized pieces that they can taste and enjoy, and experience in the wild. “That made me feel better. I like it, I want to continue with it.” It makes sense, right? If something is really good for you, it should be something that you enjoy and you feel better with, and we’re told so many things to do that are wrong. So much of the dietary lies the last 30 years have been wrong. That we’re sort of like become hardened to many more sort of new sort of natural advice because we’ve been wrong so much of the time. 5,000-year-old system has been time-tested; it has a little bit more credibility because stuff doesn’t last 5,000 years if it’s not working.
Mike Mutzel: Excellent. And again, for those of you that want to learn more about these teachings that Dr. Douillard’s talking about, go to lifespa.com. He has over 200 videos, a really active blog, and all kinds of e-courses and e-books and workshops for you. So, well said there, Dr. John. Let’s go back to your Europe trip. I didn’t mean to get you offtrack there, and you talked about your trip to Europe. What was your purpose of that? And you did a little experiment. Can you expand on that?
Dr. John Douillard: Yeah. I was obviously fascinated by the whole microbiome thing and I’m fascinated by the fact that the Europeans have a complete different level of diversity than we have here in the States, so I decided to see if we can get some microbiomes done. We had about 10 people go to Europe during the summer, and they had their microbiome tested before and after. Half the group took the probiotic, the ProbioMax from Xymogen, and the other half took nothing. We don’t have the results yet because it’s still in process because people still come and back from Europe as we speak, and the goal was to see No. 1, if just going to Europe will actually change the microbiome, and we’re going to have to take the second test two weeks after they return so that we can see if we created permanent residence. I was also intrigued by the fact that the ProbioMax actually has some studies showed that it actually supports permanent residency if somebody’s new bug’s in diversity. So, I want to have half the group do that and see if see if they have to develop better diversity as a result of being unpragmatic, plus the European diet. And then my wife and I did a blog when we actually went. My wife did an amazing job doing research and finding all these really raw cheese areas. We went to the place through where some of the first cheese in Europe were made, and they’re very remote in the mountain regions. We talked to farmers there and taste their cheese and did a research and blogged about rennet and blogged about the whole journey of learning about the cheese, and it was just understanding the different way cheeses, casein cheeses, and they are all in my website. If you really want to know about cheese and the good and the bad and the ugly about rennet, and you have to avoid it, you have to get around it, we just have some fascinating experiences about how to do that. If you want to get cheese that is not made by bioengineering and it’s not made with animal rennet, the two things that most of us probably want to avoid, and about 90% of the cheese we eat in America is made bioengineered through GMO bacteria, which is kind of weird (funguses actually). I don’t know if you really want to go there, but if you don’t want to go there, then you have to get organic and kosher cheese. If you get organic cheese, that’s Kosher, then you cover all your bases. It’s really weird to have to figure that out, but organic means that you can’t use bioengineering as organic, and Kosher cheese cannot be made from animals, from the calf. So, if you get an organic kosher cheese and it’s raw, and you’re getting some really great bugs, and you’re getting it in a really natural manner, so that’s pretty cool. That’s one of the takeaways, which you know, when you’re trying to navigate cheese, people just eat cheese and they realize what they’re actually eating and many times, if people don’t think about the little cows that are dying and all that, it’s a whole thing. I also found, which I thought was quite fascinating, was the original cheese in Europe, they didn’t even start using a rennet in the amount in Austria until the 1900s, so this idea of using rennet and killing a calf to get the rennet is a very recent idea. And they made it a cheese called “sour cheese,” which is the original cheese which is just natural fermentation of the milk, and they would rub it with salt to make a rice that would last through the winter. Well, that’s exactly where Ayurvedic paneer. Paneer’s a natural fermentation process that use a little lemon to co-agulate it. But the original cheese that they are still eating in the mountain regions in Europe is very much Ayurvedic paneer, which I thought as kind of really interesting that the two were tied together. I always like just try to bridge the Ayurvedic or these ancient traditions together because we only evolve together, and here we have the original cheeses in Europe weren’t hard cheeses as we have them today. They were actually very soft cheeses and quite different than what we experience today.
Mike Mutzel: Interesting. Did that experience open your eyes more to why so many people are “dairy-sensitive” here in the US?
Dr. John Douillard: Absolutely. And I’ve written a lot about dairy and gluten allergies, and I’m not a big fan of the concept. I think that people have issues with dairy because they don’t digest proteins really well, because their digestive fire has gone south; they’re ability to break down casein isn’t really there for them, so they don’t break down the protein, it goes undigested in the gut, reaps the gut to stretch, causes inflammation of the gut, and the lymph around the gut swells, you get bloating and gas and all kinds of hypersensitivity, food allergy-related concerns. Gluten, similar kind of a concept – hard to digest protein that should be broken down the stomach, the digestive fire goes south, which it doesn’t, and that’s another discussion why all that happens, but it does happen for folks. And we just blame the dairy and the gluten on our indigestion. Now, yes, gluten has been hybridized to be much different, but it’s still digestible. Dairy has issues; it’s been pasteurized and homogenized, so I think we process dairy that is much more difficult to digest and I don’t recommend that.
In Europe, the cows – talk about happy cows – they are roaming through mountains and there are no fences; they roam wherever they want, they have miles and miles to roam through. I mean, it’s just really the pristine environment. They never poop on the same grass twice. They’re grazing and moving on so they’re not ever in a tent. It’s just unbelievable what they’re eating. Most of their dairy, if it’s in the mountain range, it’s non-pasteurized and definitely non-homogenized. And even if it is pasteurized and homogenized, the fact that it’s grass-fed. I did a really interesting newsletter. We’re doing this video newsletter once a week, and I took a picture of the native Colorado pasture grass. I did a video of it and talked about what we have in our pasture grasses here as part of grass-fed beef or cattle here in the States, and then I went to Norway and I went to really make the Jarlsberg cheese and I showed the picture of the grass there. Blow your mind, right? I mean, how thick and rich and how diverse the grasses were, and of course, each different grass and crop actually attracts different microbes, so they’re getting so much diversity and the microbes, the grasses, the minerals and the vitamins. When we went to Austria, and they claim that they get 50 different varieties of grass in their pastures in the mountains of Austria, and I showed the one in Colorado, we have one grass on the grasses here in Colorado. That’s pretty sad. So, I showed pictures of these different pastures. And I actually met a man, he was way up high in these mountains, and I ran up this mountain to go find him and talk to him. He spoke barely in English at all and he had a big sickle and he was going around on this mountain pasture sickling two or three specific weeds that he didn’t want his cows to eat. He was an organic farmer, and he told me that he didn’t like these particular weeds in the grass because it makes the cows sick (they don’t like it), makes the milk tastes bad, so I chop this out. We’re talking about this pasture that I was on doubled as a ski slope that affect pretty much every town in Europe and in Austria. They have a ski slope that’s just so unbelievable, and he was sitting there sickling two or three weeds out of this entire ski area by hand, and that’s how much care he gave to his pasture before he lets his cows in there. I have a video of him doing that, and it blew my mind. And it’s just like we don’t even come anything close to that. It’s just so phenomenal. But here’s an interesting tip – a takeaway – that might help you. If you think you’re lactose-intolerant or you can’t eat dairy, go get some Organic Valley whipping cream, and then get some organic skim milk, and take the whipping cream and eat the cream and see how you do with the whipping cream. If you have issues with the whipping cream, you don’t have lactose intolerance and you don’t have a dairy issue or casein insensitivity; you actually have a gallbladder issue because in the whipping cream, there’s nothing but fat. There’s no lactose in it and there’s no casein in it. Zero; it’s 100% fat. So, if you take the cream and eat it, your dairy issue is a gallbladder issue, which is very common by the way. And then in the skim, of course, you have the lactose and you have the casein. What they did, which I thought was also really interesting – what they did historically, because they actually did have lactose intolerance issues way back then – they would take the cream and separate it out, they would dilute the cream and drink it as milk and use it for like drinking directly as cream or maybe making butter out of it, and they would take the skim and they would make cheese out of it. They always separate to make butter out of the fat, and then they would make cheese out of the skim. The cheese-making process converse the lactose to lactic acid, so it’s basically benign; anybody can digest it. And the casein, the longer the cheese would last would be more broken down in the culturing of the cheese. The enzymes will actually break down the casein, and they get very, very easy to digest. And if you don’t like that, you can get whey cheese like ricotta and the Norwegian gjetost is a completely whey cheese; it’s made of whey, just like mother’s milk, but no casein at all, and so that is completely digestion-free from a dairy perspective if you’re looking at lactose and casein as the two major culprits. So, it might be your gallbladder is causing most of your problem. So, that’s what I try to teach on my website, is how to troubleshoot yourself so you’re really treating the right thing, not just taking wheat and dairy out of your diet, not really knowing that you might have an underlying digestive issue that could be setting up for those things; and if you can’t digest well, you don’t detoxify well; and while you can take all the hard to digest foods out of your diet, you can’t take the mercury and the heavy metals and environmental pollutants, which are all fat soluble out of the environment. So, if you don’t digest well, you’re setting yourself up for thinking, “Everything’s wonderful by changing my diet, but actually being more vulnerable to the toxins that I should be able to digest and process from my detox channels, but I’m not able to do so, and I think I got it covered by just taking wheat and dairy from out of my diet.” Not that you ever need to eat wheat or dairy ever again in your life, I totally get that; but if you don’t digest those well, that might be an indicator that you’re not digesting as efficiently as you could and setting up for a toxicity issue down the road.
Mike Mutzel: Wow, there are so many bullets there. I think all the listeners will go back and rewind that last five minutes to listen to that. Dr. John, you covered so much, and I love what you said because this is a very common question that I get a lot is, “Well, I’ve removed dairy, I’ve removed wheat, corn, soy; I’m exercising and I’m doing this, and I still feel crappy.”
Dr. John Douillard: Yeah.
Mike Mutzel: And everyone thinks that that’s like the magic reset button, and I think in probably maybe 60-80% of people, that would really solve a lot of their issues. However, like you said, if you’re not secreting bile, you have bile dysfunction, you have GI dysfunction, you have dysbiosis, when no biles very antimicrobial, it sets up all these downstream, like you said, detox pathways and much more. So, I love that test; it’s very easy. You just go get the whipping cream and do it.
Dr. John Douillard: Yeah.
Mike Mutzel: I would like to even backtrack a little bit more. The take-home message from what you saw working with these farmers and different types of varieties of grasses compared to even Colorado, which is everyone would think Colorado’s in the mountains, there’s a lot of organic farming, and grass-fed pasteurized milk and so forth, diversity of microbes in the grasses in Europe is not what it is here in the US.
Dr. John Douillard: We overgraze our fields. That’s the bottom line. If we would let the cows – like in Europe, when you drive through Europe in these mountains, there are cows in every mountain. When you drive to Rocky Mountain National Park, I don’t see any cows ever. When I drive to Vail or drive to the mountains, go skiing, I never see a cow. You don’t see any cows ever unless you’re in a pen somewhere because they are able to free roam and free range; they don’t overgraze, they move on and the cover grasses that are fully short can actually survive. What I saw, really – in the videos, this is really clearly. If you look, the depth of the grasses here, there’s dirt underneath there. And if you’re looking at the depth of the grasses there, there you can’t dig for the dirt, and I think that really just says it all. And I think on the east coast and the northwest, they’re going to get way much better chance of making that happen than here in Colorado because we are, of course, a higher area desert.
Mike Mutzel: Dr. John, let’s go back to your trip in Europe. You mentioned something that I would love for you to expand on, and that is the most important meal of the day. You’ve observed these individuals in these raw areas taking a lot of time to eat this one important meal in the day. Let’s expand on that and why is it so important.
Dr. John Douillard: Well, yeah, you’re right. Everywhere in Europe and Asia, people stop and have their biggest meal in the middle of the day. Studies have shown that the digestive fire – actually, I’ve seen studies that showed that the taste buds taste better in the middle of the day. I’ve read and blogged about the fact that vegetables are actually most potent nutritionally in the middle of the day. Of course, you don’t refrigerate them, but the plants are actually producing more nutrition in the middle of the day. Somehow, nature seems to be telling us that we should be eating in the middle of the day. Now, we also know, Ayurvedically, that there are cycles in nature. In the middle of the morning, it’s a muscle cycle; our muscles are stronger in the morning to do physical labor, do dishes, and all that kind of stuff, and there are good studies that support that muscles are in fact stronger in the morning. The Soviets used to do their exercise, their heavy lifting, training in the morning. I referenced that in my first book, “Body, Mind and Sport;” it’s all about that. Then in the middle of the day, the digestive fire is stronger; that’s between 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock. And then between 2 o’clock and 6 o’clock, the nervous system kicks in, and that’s when the brain says, “I want 80% of my fuel between 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 in the afternoon; and that’s why most people are craving dark chocolate in the afternoon, wanting a cup of coffee in the afternoon, feeling alone, they want to fall asleep, they can’t drive their car home, because the nervous system is craving fuel and because we only had a salad in front of our computer, we don’t have enough energy; we haven’t digested enough fuel to deliver what the brain is needing to survive energy in the afternoon, so we crash and burn. So, one of the questions you want to ask yourself is, “How do I feel in the afternoon in 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6? Am I tired, lethargic? Am I craving dark chocolate, Sneakers bars? How am I feeling?” If you feel yucky, and, “I feel like I’m coming home from work either tired or exhausted,” then go to the middle of the day and see if you can use the tips – stop and take time and have a nice big relaxing meal in the middle of the day, and relax and really take time. This is traditionally with the most folks around the world did. Even in America, but in the agricultural society. We had our big meal in the middle of the day. When I was a kid, we had big meals on Sundays, but that was a leftover from the big meals every day. Now, that’s all gone, remember? And so, the idea that you stop and have a big meal in the middle of the day feed the nervous system who’s coming down the pike 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 in the afternoon, and give enough fuel in a big tank of gas the brain can get the energy it needs to have energy, clarity and vitality in the afternoon. I remember the first time I went to practice, I used to feel like I was hit by a truck when I left work; I was pushing through the afternoons to get through the day. I just couldn’t believe it, and I had a physical, and they said my blood sugar was high. I talked to an Ayurvedic doctor and he goes, “When do you eat your lunch?” I said, “I’m always in a rush. I’m usually running away, always something on the run. Sometimes, I don’t even have lunch.” He said, “Go home, have a nice warm-cooked meal in the middle of the day, relax and dine, and you’ll never have high blood pressure again.” I said, “C’mon, really? Eating a big lunch is not going to solve my blood pressure.” I was diagnosed with high blood pressure when I was 27 years old, and my blood pressure now was really, really low. But first thing that I did was to help bring myself back into balance. As I was beginning to learn Ayurveda, was to start taking time to relax and enjoy a big meal in the middle of the day. It changed my life. Now, I finish my day with the same energy as I started. I have low blood pressure, and I was one of the big pieces of “Get Yourself Back into Balance” for one thing that people could do to help get them to begin to live in harmony with those natural cycles because really, a big dinner 8 o’clock at night, I think we all know that by now – the cooks go home at sunset, so eating their meal late is going to be very difficult for the body to digest in the liver, Ayurvedically speaking. And even, there are studies that showed that the glutathione production is cyclical; it kicks in the evening between, I think, 1 and 3, or something like that. And so, if you are eating a big dinner late at night, the liver is going to be digesting as opposed to detoxifying and preparing you for the next day. Same as staying up late; the later you go to bed, then the more you disturb the natural detoxification cycle, so you don’t get to detoxify. And we think we can just live against the grain and act as if nothing’s happening, but I’m going to tell you, the beginning, the deer eating not in season, they could die. Does that mean we are completely immune to being connected to these cycles? I hope that like you said, in the beginning of the technology that we have and the understanding of the microbiology is going to teach us that there are these cycles in nature, it’s important for us to live in harmony with nature even with this season, which is my 3-Season Diet is all about. The beginner reconnect, and that doesn’t mean we can’t live on a high tech world and still be connected to nature. I think that’s the ultimate goal that I would see. We get the best of both.
Mike Mutzel: Gosh, there’s so much there that our listeners are going to be rewinding that one, too, and listening to that. So, great points. Now, I learned from one of your students, Ana Verzone, that supper is really derived from the word, “support.”
Dr. John Douillard: Supper comes from the word “supplemental” or “soup.” So, the word “soup” and “supplemental” are basically the words. So, supper was always meant to be supplemental meal, and in England, they call it “sup;” it was always meant to be the soup-like, small, very supplemental type of meal. They never meant to be the main meal of the day. Now, in the cities, that’s what happens. If you go where I was in Europe, these farmers are done, they shut it down because they’re working so hard from the morning and they’re going to bed early. Now, we’re having a 10 o’clock dinner. That’s not happening. You know what I mean? Because they really do. That’s what I noticed – these people work hard. I mean, that was really impressive to see how early they’re up. These cows way up in the middle of these mountains, far up in these mountains, they have to be no plays a day, they’ve got to figure out how to get those cows out to the pastures and get them back to where these little hatchers. And in some cases, these farmers actually go to where the cows are because it’s too steep to get a car or vehicle up to them. They actually get to go and carry the milk out. It’s unbelievable what they do.
Mike Mutzel: Yeah, hard work. I always feel better if I go to bed early and get up early as well, so I couldn’t agree with you more on that. As we wrap up here, Dr. Douillard, let’s talk about some of the take-home messages from your book, “The 3-Season Diet” with fall coming. What are some things or practical things that you recommend for our listeners?
Dr. John Douillard: Well, the key here we’re at the end of the summer. And summer accumulates heat. You get the seasonality that the hotter it gets, heat starts to rise. It rises in the trees, the trees dry out, the leaves turn red, they fall off the trees, and they detoxify those leaves. We, similarly, are accumulating heat, heat begins to rise, we begin to want to detoxify. So, it’s very important for us to understand how to do two things: one, dissipate the heat out of our body. Now, nature is really cool because it gives us a perfect antidote solution for that – apples are cooling and fibers, so they flush your intestinal tract. One of the ways to get heat out of your body is if you have a fever, you get diarrhea, if you eat enough apples, if you go to northwest to the northeast where they grow out the apples, and in October, they’re all walking around with loose bowels because they’re making so much apple cider. And apples can help create a purgative effect, which dissipates the heat in the body. Watermelons are cooling, pomegranates are cooling. Most of these fruits, it you eat enough of them, they’re in season, you’re going to end up with a looser stool and that’s a one way nature has set up for us to dissipate the heat in our body the accumulates in the summer months. And when winter comes, which gives us an antidotal heat, but what accumulates is the dryness. They go from hot and dry in the summer to cold and dry in the winter. And if we don’t get rid of the heat at the end of the summer, that heat turns into extra dryness, and then come Halloween, November 1st, we shift gears from a summer cooling diet to a winter building high-fat, high-protein diet. The Atkins diet, the Paleo diet, the high-protein diets are very, very appropriate in the winter, but right now, we are in a definitely cooling sort of high-carbohydrate, high fruit and vegetable diet. We go to a high-protein, high-fat diet, and then a very low-fat diet in the spring. The three best-selling diets that we talked about are high-protein, high-fat, low-fat and high-carb diets actually existed in nature for four months in a year – in the winter, summer, and spring. So, the rules are constantly changing, our microbes are constantly changing as a result of that. It’s not easy to do it in our culture because we’re so used in the same food all the time, but it’s a great awareness to have. That’s why there are free grocery lists for winter and summer, as well as from summer and spring. Just print them out, circle the foods on the summer list that you like, eat more of those foods, think about what you can eat more of in each season as opposed to what you shouldn’t eat, and begin to tie your taste buds to the cycles of nature, and that will be one way to, like you said about turning off the Wi-Fi when you’re eating your food, is similarly is the same thing that happen when you eat in season if you just take the time to start to reeducate yourself to get the microbes at the right time, at the right season supports the right immunity and the right benefit, all tied to these incredible cycles of nature. And that’s what Ayurveda is. That’s what Ayurveda is a science of. That’s why I love it so much because it’s not Indian, it’s like we got to know this stuff.
Mike Mutzel: Absolutely. That’s well said. We have a link to Dr. John’s book there on the show notes. Dr. John, thank you so much for joining us, and there’s just two last short questions that I ask all guests, and this is based upon your opinion. So, if there’s one herb, supplement or botanical that you constantly recommend and you just can’t live without, what would it be?
Dr. John Douillard: Well, there’s an herb called “manjistha,” and it’s a lymphatic de-stagnator, and I think, when you look from the Ayurveda perspective, the first thing that goes south in our digestion and is affected by stress is your lymphatic system. I’ve written a lot about that, but that’s a lymphatic de-stagnator, and if your lymph is congested, your drains are clogged, take out your vial, your digestion, your gluten, your dairy, the whole thing starts there. So, relax, eat your food, and that one herb is an herb that a lot of folks need to get that lymph back on track.
Mike Mutzel: Okay. So, it’s manjistha. Perfect. Now, the last question is if there was just one lifestyle tip that you would like all your patients to implement right away – this could be eating their biggest meal at lunch, this can be stress reduction, getting rid of toxic relationships – what would it be?
Dr. John Douillard: Probably eating the biggest meal in the middle of the day. That’s probably the most important thing. And then, since we already talked about that, I want to have a chance to give you two.
Mike Mutzel: Sure.
Dr. John Douillard: I would probably say meditate. Somehow, we got to learn how to handle the stress because it’s overwhelming and it takes out our bugs.
Mike Mutzel: Is there a time in the day that’s best to meditate?
Dr. John Douillard: The time of the day – if you look at in nature, a lake that’s really calm is most common in the morning, at sunrise, and most calm at night. The lake’s calm down at those few times, so those are the most subtle times in times in nature, so those are great times. But I always tell I agree about the meditation technique that we call the “transformation awareness technique,” that we teach and I tell people, “Whenever you can shut your nervous system down and quiet your mind, it’s going to be valuable. Don’t make a rule about it. If you can only do it at this time of the day, just do it.” We need it too way more.” But when we know the nature is calm, in the morning when it’s really peaceful, that’s a great time; and in the evening. And even at night time, it can be very peaceful as well.
Mike Mutzel: Perfect. I find it to be most easy for me to get rid of all those chattering thoughts and my to-do list if I just don’t turn on the phone and first thing in the morning, do some yoga and meditations and heart math. It’s really nice to kick off a day with a calm, clear mind.
Dr. John Douillard: Absolutely. I couldn’t agree with you more.
Mike Mutzel: Alright, Dr. John. Well, I learned a ton. I really did. You have just an incredible wealth of knowledge and again, we’re proving ancient wisdom with modern science here with Dr. John Douillard. Thanks so much for joining us, and hope you have a nice big lunch and a great afternoon.
Dr. John Douillard: Thanks Mike.
Mike Mutzel: Alright, take care.