Health plays a big role in our ability to show up in our businesses — not to mention life in general — so it was a pleasure to get some big questions answered by Sarah Cotten of Gut Instinct Wellness and Dr. Stephanie Stark of Blue Oak Clinic. Enjoy the show!

  1. Both of you chose non traditional paths in the health and wellness field, so I’d like to start by clarifying some terms. a) Stephanie, I’ll start with you. What is the difference between allopathic and naturopathic medicine? b) Sarah, your area of expertise is in the gut-brain connection. Describe for us what that means and how it relates to Somatic Experiencing. c) For each of you, how have you experienced these methods fitting within our current healthcare system? Are they embraced, or are they regarded with suspicion?
  2. Trying to make good health decisions reminds me of an episode of “The Good Place.” There’s a scene when they describe how hard it is to make good choices, like eating blueberries only to find out that the working conditions for blueberry farmers are terrible. I’ve met countless people who try to do something to advocate for their health only to find out unintended consequences. You eat more fish as a healthy protein, but your mercury levels go up. You try to be more plant based to be eco-friendly, but your iron levels drop. It’s kind of maddening. a) Sarah, I’ll start with you. What advice can you give the average person who’s just trying to make good choices? b) Stephanie, the global wellness market was estimated to reach $4.75 trillion at the close of 2019. With that much information and choice flooding the market, what have been the most common misperceptions you’ve encountered with your patients?
  3. I have to ask the two of you about food allergies. I never had food allergies as a kid, but when I turned 40 I started having eczema, insomnia, and brain fog. I tested positive for gluten, egg, dairy, and almond allergies. I have countless peers with food allergies, and none of us had them as kids. People younger than ourselves also seem prone to them. a) Stephanie, was this always an issue that simply went misdiagnosed, or is this a real phenomenon? b) Sarah, the gut, brain, and nervous system are all connected. What are some of the ways in which disease and allergies disrupt that connection, and what can we do to help ourselves when that happens?
  4. There’s a biometric company in California that is experimenting with temporary tattoos to help people make good health choices. The one I saw measures sun exposure, so you know when you’ve had enough to make Vitamin D, but after that point you need to seek out shade to protect your skin. It made me curious about other wellness trends that are on the horizon. What innovations have you each heard of?

Resources referenced during show:

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Small Business, Big Voices: Episode 15