Fed & Fit

Ep. 161: Thyroid Reset with Dr. Becky Campbell

On today's episode, I'm chatting with Dr. Becky Campbell about her new book, the 30-Day Thyroid Reset Plan.

We're back with our 161st episode of the Fed+Fit Podcast! Remember to check back every Monday for a new episode and be sure to subscribe on iTunes!

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Episode 161 Links

  • Click HERE for Dr. Campbell's book!

Episode 161 Transcription

Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. My name is Cassy Joy Garcia and I am your host. Today I am joined by a lovely guest. Today I’m introducing you to Dr. Becky Campbell, who can be found over at DrBeckyCampbell.com. I bet you can remember that one pretty easily.

She is the author of a book that is hitting shelves tomorrow. It’s called The 30-Day Thyroid Reset Plan. Subtitle is Disarming The 7 Hidden Triggers That Are Keeping You Sick. I’m so excited to chat with her today and learn all about this book. Welcome to the show Dr. Campbell.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Hi Cassy! Thank you so much for having me. I’m so excited.

Cassy Joy: Yeah, me too! Thank you for joining us. Well, I gave the tiniest introduction possible, so I would love it if you could tell folks more about yourself, your background, your work, and what led you to write this book.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Sure. Probably about 15-ish years ago, I started to just not feel like myself. And I think that’s what I hear from most of my patients now; they don’t feel like themselves anymore. I was gaining weight, and I had never had a weight issue. I felt like I gained 30 pounds overnight. And I was just extremely tired. More tired than I had ever been before. Really making it hard to function. My hair was falling out in clumps, and I didn’t know what was wrong.

I started seeing different doctors, and really nobody had any answers for me. And eventually the last thing I probably heard was, “Take this depression medication.” Pretty much telling me it was all in my head. But I knew that it wasn’t. I knew that there was something wrong.

I finally met someone who did functional medicine, which I had never heard of before. Which is pretty much a more natural approach to looking at what’s going wrong in the body. Doing thorough testing, and really figuring things out that way rather than listening to symptoms and prescribing medications.

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Dr. Becky Campbell: So they actually found out that I had a thyroid issue, which other doctors had missed. Just because they weren’t doing very thorough thyroid panels. And it’s really common, actually, for that to happen. I hear that from so many people. And probably a lot of people listening now can relate to that.

So they did thorough testing to figure out what was causing the thyroid issue, which was really important to me. And we figured it out. We healed certain parts of my body that weren’t function properly. And I got back to normal. And I honestly didn’t ever think that I would get back to normal. And it was such an amazing feeling when I did that I knew that I had to do this. I had to learn this, and I had to help other people in the same way. So that’s when it all started for me.

So I just dug in and learned as much as I could over a few years. And I'm still learning. Functional medicine is so deep. There’s so much to know. But it’s amazing. I just ended up where the people that were coming to me, most people had thyroid issues. And I do a lot of different things when someone has a thyroid issue.

But the part I did in the very beginning, the first four weeks, or the first 30 days, was what I saw the most improvement in these patients. So I just decided to put it in a book. Because not everybody knows who I am. Not everyone can afford to go to functional medicine practitioners. So I wanted to do something where everyone could afford it. Everyone could do it, and really start to change their lives and feel like themselves again. So that’s where the idea of the book came in.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful. What a great story, an encouraging story. It’s got to feel so wonderful to have something that you can put out there. Because you get to a point where you just can’t make an appointment with every single person.

Dr. Becky Campbell: It’s so true, yeah. Definitely. It feels great.

Cassy Joy: That’s great. Well congratulations. It’s no small feat. Books are no joke.

Dr. Becky Campbell: I know. It took me about 6 months. But it was definitely worth it. It was fun so I had a good time.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful. Well, it’s beautiful and very thorough. So I know folks are going to be in good hands.

Can you just very briefly; for people who are listening that maybe some of your story resonates with them but they want to know a little bit more. Can you walk people through; what exactly is thyroid disease? Because we’re familiar with all of these sorts of metabolic conditions becoming a little more common place and conversational, but where does thyroid disease fit in?

Dr. Becky Campbell: The thyroid is a little gland that sits in the front of your throat. And it’s really responsible either directly or indirectly for just about every function in the body. So it’s so important. We use thyroid hormone in all of our cells. It controls things like heart rate, breathing, our weight, our menstrual cycles, our body temperatures. So many different things.

And there’s a lot of people suffering with thyroid disease. There are about 20 million people with thyroid disease. And a lot of people who have it don’t even know they have it. So, this is something I actually see a lot of comments on my blog posts and stuff. People haven’t been diagnosed, but they know something is wrong and they’re resonating with these symptoms.

It’s just something that is so important to have a properly functioning thyroid. And the right amount of thyroid hormones. Or else you're going to have issues in a lot of different parts of the body. And that’s why you see people who have hypothyroid specifically have symptoms all over the body. There are random symptoms all over the body. So it’s just so important to have a healthy thyroid function.

Cassy Joy: It makes a lot of sense. It’s foundational to our health. Ok, so you mentioned; in the subtitle of the book and then you also very quickly mentioned underlying triggers. What are these triggers that we could be looking out for?

Dr. Becky Campbell: There are different things that this is where functional medicine comes in to play very differently from when you go to see a conventional medicine doctor. Typically, when you go to a conventional medicine doctor, if you do get diagnosed, they’re going to put you on medication and pretty much tell you that that’s your fate. Medication and hopefully you feel ok and if not they don’t really know what to do at that point.

But then functional medicine, we really like to see what could be driving disease. And this goes for any issue that someone comes to us for. But specifically for the thyroid; one of the biggest things I see a problem with is the gut. So, everyone is talking about the gut now. Gut health is so important.

But specifically, for the thyroid, we have two very important thyroid hormones; T4 and T3. And T4 is the inactive form of thyroid hormone, and T3 is the active form. T4 has to be converted to T3 to be used. So one of those places that happens is the gut. So if you have any type of gut infections; and I go over all the specs of this in the book. But things like candida, and parasites, and small intestine bacterial overgrowth; SIBO. Then that’s going to disrupt that conversion from T4 to T3. So that’s one of the biggest triggers I see.

Leaky gut is also another gut issue. But leaky gut specifically can cause autoimmune disease. And about 97% of people who have a thyroid issue have Hashimoto’s disease. Which is an autoimmune disease. So we really want to make sure you don’t have leaky gut, or food sensitivities, which can lead to leaky gut.

And then another really important thing that I like to look at is the vitamin deficiencies. Specifically vitamin D. It’s so important for the immune system function. And when you have thyroid disease, and you have these gut infections, you’re usually not absorbing your nutrients very well. So a lot of people will have nutrient deficiencies.

And then another trigger is mercury. I actually; this is one of my biggest triggers. I had amalgams fillings, and I had them unsafely removed. When you put the fillings in and when you take them out, its’ the worst time because that’s when you get the most exposure to the mercury. And I had them taken out with no; there’s a specific procedure to do it safely, and they didn’t do that. So right after I had that done, and I also lived in an apartment in college that had lead paint. So between those two, that’s really when I started to notice the most symptoms. And mercury can actually build up in the thyroid gland. So that can be a big issue for people with thyroid issues.

And then sex hormone dysfunction is really common with thyroid issues. A lot of women have estrogen dominance, and this again can interfere with that T4 to T3 conversion. And then chronic infections. Epstein Barr is kind of a hot topic right now. A lot of people talk about Epstein Barr being a big driving force for thyroid issues, and it really is. It’s crazy when I do the history, when I talk to patients on a first visit and I take their history; so many have had Epstein Barr. And it’s not the only cause, but it’s definitely a common cause. So these are the different things I talk about in the book that can be triggers. And things you really need to look at and address. And once you can, you really start to see a change in how your thyroid number looks and how you feel. A lot of people get rid of their symptoms just from healing these issues.

Cassy Joy: It’s so interesting. So if someone is listening; they might be thinking, “Oh goodness. This feels a little overwhelming. There are a lot of angles. And I don’t know really where to start or where to tackle this.” As from, of course, grabbing your resource and looking more into your work, can you kind of give folks an idea of what they could do with this information and looking out for these triggers.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Yeah. I wanted this book to be very informative, but also very easy to understand, and very easy to take and do something with. It really isn’t a complicated read; it’s actually a very easy read. And I discuss these triggers, and I tell you what to do with each one. But first and foremost, it’s really going to be your diet change. Changing the diet and doing these specific foods that I talk about in the book are going to give you the most beneficial effects by far. And it’s really where I start everybody.

In addition to the food, it’s also about the liver. The liver plays such a huge role in hormone function, and the amount of hormones that we have in the body and how they’re being used. I would say the first thing to focus on is going to be the diet and following this 30-day plan the way I have it laid out, and doing liver support. Which I talk about in the book and I give you some resources for that.

And then you can start to do some of these tests if you feel like you need to keep it moving forward and start to dig into these triggers a little bit more. But everyone is different, so it’s hard to say who is going to have what trigger. But a lot of people will feel such a difference with the diet alone. I really think that’s the best place to start. Which is why I built the foundation of this book around that.

Cassy Joy: It makes a lot of sense. And that’s definitely my work, as a nutrition consultant. We start with food. But I’m also curious; do you address any other lifestyle habits or dig into that in your work, whether in the book or online? Everything from what we’re putting on our skin, or cleaning products, things like that that could have an impact?

Dr. Becky Campbell: Yes. Actually talk a lot about that in the book, and I give you different types of exercise depending on where you are in all of this. Because some people do really well with yoga, and some people do really well with high intensity interval training. So it all depends on where you are. So I really lay that out in the book; what you need to be doing as far as exercise.

And then so much of this is driven by what we’re putting on our skin. Which is why I think you are into Beautycounter, right?

Cassy Joy: Yes, I am.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Yeah, me too. It’s great. And I talk about them specifically in the book. But I also give you recipes for things you can do yourself. Because it’s so important just to change those little habits of putting chemicals on our skin, and how we go about trying to get more sleep, and the conditions in which we’re sleeping in. There is so much that goes into how our bodies function and how we feel. So I really tried to lay all of that out so that you can really get the most benefit yourself without even having to reach out to someone else. Because not everybody can do that. There’s a lot of that stuff in here.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful. So what if somebody is listening and they’re thinking; I thought I needed to treat; I’m springing some of these questions on Becky. But what if they’re thinking; “I thought I needed to look at my gut. I thought that was the problem I needed to look at. I thought I needed to do something with low-FODMAPs, or I needed to chose more hormonal support protocols.” I’m blanking on all the different protocols out there, but it seems like there’s an endless amount of them, and in endless different directions.

Is there any one thing you can tell somebody that might really point them towards considering thyroid health as kind of their champion theme in trying to really heal? Is that a clear question?

Dr. Becky Campbell: Are you wanting to know what someone can do if they’re trying to get better? I really am a little confused on what you're asking. What I thought you were asking is what they should follow, whether it’s low-FODMAPs, or what can they do to heal their gut and all that stuff. But then I wasn’t sure what you meant at the end.

Cassy Joy: I guess my question is, someone can sit down and look up on the internet a gut healing protocol. And they can look up an autoimmune protocol. And they can look up; goodness, I’m blanking. A low-FODMAP type protocol, right? What, of all the options. There’s also a thyroid protocol. So of all of these ones that are out there, what is something that you think would point someone directly toward thyroid health specifically?

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Dr. Becky Campbell: Ok, I think the problem is that there are a lot of protocols on the internet that are great. But people are doing them not knowing if they have the issue. And they’re wasting a lot of time and money, and they’re getting very frustrated. And this is when a lot of people will come to me or other practitioners. Because they’re trying to do it themselves, and they’re not sure if what they’re doing is going to work for them. Or they’re not getting results.

One thing I really stress is that you should test. A lot of people say test don’t guess. Because you're going to waste a lot of time and money if you don’t know you have the issue. So if you are specifically having a thyroid issue, you should be doing a diet that’s going to support the thyroid health. Because you know you have that issue. Which is exactly what I talk about in the book. I go over foods that best support the thyroid. And if you know you have Hashimoto’s specifically, then yeah, the gut is where you're going to want to look and you're going to want to support the gut the most.

I wouldn’t recommend doing a candida protocol or a SIBO protocol if you don’t know you have those. Because those symptoms can be from a lot of different things. And people really drive themselves crazy trying to do all these different protocols without knowing for sure. So I would say eating foods for conditions you know for sure you have is going to be the best bet.

Cassy Joy: Awesome, thank you. Yes, that was what I was hoping for. Because that’s a question I get a lot. Folks are essentially trying to test the smoke of the fire to determine what kind of wood is burning, versus just taking a sample of the wood. Which is the difference between going based off kind of fuzzy, very difficult to interpret symptoms, to finding a root cause versus getting tested.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Right.

Cassy Joy: Wonderful. That was very helpful. Anything else you’d like to tell folks about the book that’s hitting shelves tomorrow?

Dr. Becky Campbell: I just think you’ll love it. I tried to make this book from a reader’s perspective. So many of us have 10 books sitting next to our nightstand that are great, but they’re really long and sometimes we don’t have time for that. So I tried to make it really reader friendly. Lots of pictures, lots of infographics, telling you what test to ask your doctors for. Telling you what supplements to take. Telling you exactly what foods you need to eat. Giving you shopping lists. Giving you a weekly menu plan.

And then telling you what to do after that. There are actually two other options depending on how you respond the first 30 days. I really, really think you're going to love it. This is where I get to see the most results in practice with my patients.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful. Well how exciting! I’m thrilled it’s going to be out there. Thank you for reaching out and for sharing your work with us.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Well thank you so much for having me, Cassy. You’re so sweet. And I have to tell you; I was talking with Jennifer Robbins today. She’s one of my good friends, and she’s so sweet. And I told her I was having the podcast with you. And she was like; “Oh my gosh, she’s one of the nicest people in world.”

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Oh, that’s sweet. I adore Jen. If y’all don’t know Jennifer Robbins of Predominantly Paleo. She’s also the brains behind the Legit Bread Company. She’s written; I joke 27 books, but I think she’s four and counting.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Five. Yeah.

Cassy Joy: Five and counting! Man she’s just wonderful. That’s so sweet. I really adore her. Well, Becky. Dr. Campbell. {laughs}

Dr. Becky Campbell: Oh, that’s ok. Becky’s fine.

Cassy Joy: Thank you so much for coming on the show today. For those of you, just in case you're driving and you want to hear it one more time, the book is called The 30-Day Thyroid Reset Plan. Author Campbell; Dr. Campbell. You can find it on Amazon. You can also find it on Barnes and Noble. So wherever you prefer to shop. And you can learn more about Dr. Campbell over at www.DrBeckyCampbell.com. Pretty easy to remember.

Thank you so much for joining us. And I’ll include links to everything in the show notes, as well as a full transcript. But it was a pleasure talking with you.

Dr. Becky Campbell: Thank you so much, Cassy. You as well.

Cassy Joy: Wonderful. Everybody else, thanks so much for dialing in. We’ll be back again next week.

   

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