Today’s guest is Risa Groux.

Risa Groux is a functional nutritionist, certified autoimmune coach and author of the new book, FOODFRAME: Diet is a Four-Letter Word. 

In her practice, Risa deals with a number of diseases which include autoimmune diseases, diabetes, cancer, digestion issues, thyroid problems, and hormone imbalances, just to name a few. She believes that education is key to improved health and the more educated we are about health and nutrition, the more improved life quality we can all lead. 

One of the problems we face is misconceptions about the various diets that are available and Risa tells us that not all diets will allow us to thrive. She believes that a one size fits all approach to nutrition doesn’t work and that people should be eating according to their current health status. Risa helps us break down the most popular mainstream diets, which include Paleo, Ketogenic, Autoimmune Protocol, Vegan, Low FODMAP and Low Lectin diets and shares with us those who would benefit from these various diets based on their health problems. 

Risa states that our genetics load the gun when it comes to our health, but that it is our lifestyle that pulls the trigger and one example of this is the current health crisis facing our children who have a one in three chance of becoming a type two diabetic due to the overconsumption of sugar in that part of our population. 

Risa offers many pearls of wisdom when it comes to some of the measures we can take to improve our overall health and well-being by not only minimising sugars, but also by alleviating bad oils, doing a simple detox, including a daily intake of vital supplements and the benefits of getting back to cooking at home and eating meals at the table as a family rather consuming fast foods. 

There is so much in this episode with Risa Groux you don’t want to miss.

In this episode

05:12 — The Diet Culture: Functional Nutritionist or a Dietitian?

09:05 — The Doctors’ Referrals

11:09 — Practicing With Patient Doctors

12:25 — Chronic Problems of Societal Diet

18:24 — 200 Shades of Autoimmune

20:33 — Good Oils and Bad Oils

22:43 — Things That Aren’t Meant to Be Consumed

29:39 — Eating Lifestyle Matters

35:48 — Switching the Gears: Ketosis

38:09 — Autoimmune Protocol (AIP)

39:34 — Going to the Roots: Lectins

43:31 — The Greens and the Vegetarians

45:34 — Simplest Way to Detox

47:59 — The Gold in Supplements

50:24 — Thyroid Is Really Important


Dr Marisa Lee Naismith is excited to announce the release of her new book “Singing Contemporary Commercial Music Styles: A Pedagogical Framework” published by Compton Publications UK. Marisa offers this book as a starting point and as CCM markets continue to evolve, she encourages that we, as a voice community, continue to evolve, debate and communally add to this framework.



Visit the A Voice and Beyond Youtube channel to watch back the video replay of this guest interview or to see my welcome video.

Episode Transcription

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  00:05

It’s Marisa Lee here, and I’m so excited to be sharing today’s interview round episode with you. In these episodes, our brilliant lineup of guests will include health care practitioners, voice educators, and other professionals who will share their stories, knowledge and experiences within their specialized fields to empower you to live your best life. Whether you’re a member of the voice, community, or beyond your voice is your unique gift. It’s time now to share your gift with others, develop a positive mindset and become the best and most authentic version of yourself to create greater impact. Ultimately, you can take charge, it’s time for you to live your best life. It’s time now for A Voice and Beyond. So without further ado, let’s go to today’s episode.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  01:15

Our guest in this week’s episode is Risa Groux, a functional nutritionist certified autoimmune coach and the author of the new book Third Frame: Diet Is a Four Letter Word. In her clinic Risa deals with a number of diseases which include autoimmune diseases, diabetes, cancer, digestive issues, thyroid problems, and hormone imbalances, just to name a few. She believes that education is key to improved health and the more educated we are about health and nutrition, the more improved life quality we can all lead. One of the problems we face is misconceptions about the various diets that are available. And research tells us that not all diets will allow us to thrive. She believes that a one size fits all approach to nutrition doesn’t work and that people should be eating according to their current health status. Rissa helps us break down the most popular mainstream diets which include paleo, ketogenic autoimmune protocol, vegan, low FODMAP and low lectin diets and shares with us those who would benefit from these various diets based on their current health problems. Research states that our genetics load the gun when it comes to our health, but that it is our lifestyle that pulls the trigger. And one example of this is the current health crisis facing our children who have a one in three chance of becoming a type two diabetic due to the overconsumption of sugar in that part of our population. Risa offers many pearls of wisdom when it comes to some of the measures we can all take to improve our overall health and well being by not only minimizing sugars, but also by alleviating bad oils doing a simple detox including a daily intake of vital supplements and the benefits of getting back to home cooking and eating meals at the table as a family rather than consuming fast foods. There is so much in this episode with Risa Groux, you do not want to miss out on what she has to share with us. So without further ado, let’s go to today’s episode.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:06

Welcome to the program, Risa Groux Welcome to a voice and beyond. You are a functional nutritionist, a certified autoimmune coach and author of the new book Food Frame Diet Is a Four Letter Word. Well. It’s such an honor having you here how you going?

Risa Groux  04:26

Thank you so much. It is really great to be here. I’m doing fantastic. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:31

Awesome. So not only do you deal with autoimmune disease, but you also deal with a number of other issues such as diabetes, cancer, digestion, thyroid and hormone imbalances, just to name a few. And this is all really interesting to me and I believe that we can all be better educated when it comes to our health and and nutrition and living a more improved quality of life. So I have a million questions for you. So I hope to get through them all. But I just want to start with your background. Or I just want to know, what is the difference between a functional nutritionist and a traditional nutritionist or dietitian? 

Risa Groux  05:20

Yeah, great question. So I started off, I was always curious about food and nutrition. Always, I grew up in a house where my mom was always trying to lose that last five or 10 pounds or, or just five or 10 pounds, and wholesome foods like bad and I was thinking, why are those foods bad? They taste pretty good to me. And then there would be good foods and fattening foods. And I was just so confused growing up as a kid about about food. I mean, we have food on the table, why are some good, and why are some bad. And so my grandmother was doing the same thing. And so was this diet culture that I was watching. As I grew up, and women having this bizarre relationship with food, I didn’t see the men in my home having that same relationship with food. But I started to read every book on nutrition my whole life, pretty much. And after college, I went into sports marketing, but I kept reading things on nutrition, I had my babies, and then I read everything I couldn’t get enough, I became a clinical nutritionist, which basically is a very wide definition, you can be a clinical nutritionist and tell people what to eat or help them with their food plans, or really do a myriad of things. A registered dietitian is somebody who really follows more of the food pyramid that the government gives you. So they’re focusing more on a low fat diet, there’s some carbs and sugar, but just the little bit will be fine. And they’re working more in hospitals and clinical settings. And then when I became a clinical nutritionist, I realized, gee, I would put everybody on the same kind of food program. And I realized everybody wasn’t thriving, I’d have this group that was thriving tremendously. But scratching my head, why are these other people not thriving? And it took me a while to figure it out. But I realized that not one diet type fits all right, yes, as individuals, we, I always say the genetic load the gun and your lifestyle and environment, pull the trigger. And so I what I started doing was like, that’s how I created my food frame methodology and realizing that people should be eating according to what their current health status is. And at that time, when I was doing my food frame, and people were thriving, once we figured that out, then I started looking at labs, because how do you know somebody’s health status, if you don’t know what their what their blood labs look like, are their stool test. So I started ordering, I started learning functional nutrition. And functional nutrition guidelines are very, they’re the same as medical functional medicine guidelines. And so I started, I just did a deep dive into learning how to read bloodwork. And I’ve had amazing doctors mentor me, and I’m grateful for that. And then I do an extensive stool test panel to see what is going on in the gut. Are we producing our own digestive enzymes? Do we have some yeast or overgrowth of Candida or do we have parasites? Do we have pathogens, H. Pylori, C. diff, and go on and on and on, you know, how do we do with gluten? How do we make our own digestive enzymes, things like that? So I learned how to read all those things. And that’s what I do now is I do functional nutrition. So it’s a little deeper level, it’s a lot deeper than clinical nutrition. I do a lot more than just tell people what to eat, or what’s best for them. I also look at labs, and I look at inflammation. I look at all markers of your thyroid, I’m looking at blood sugar dysregulation, liver, kidney, gallbladder, and a breakdown of your white blood cells. So I have a really good idea of what’s going on for you.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  08:58

Wow, so who’s your typical clients? Like? How did they find you? Are they referred to you by a doctor?

Risa Groux  09:04

I have a ton of doctors who are referred to me a ton. I have an allergist who refers a lot of patients that they kind of get stumped with. Because again, we made referred one a couple of years ago, and another one just recently, but the one a couple of years ago was so highly allergic to everything that didn’t know what to do. And so I tested her for leaky gut. And you know that at the time the lab went to 107 and her number was 1050 moles, gaping, gaping holes in our intestinal lining. We only have one layer of epithelial cells protecting our intestinal lining. So when that is destroyed or impaired, it is critical nothing’s going to change until you repair that. So the doctor didn’t know have the tools to repair that and so didn’t even have the tools to look at it. So I did and I helped but a lot of OBS, a lot of doctors referred to me a lot of word of mouth. I work with some professional athletes, I work with just a wide range of people. And I have a big chunk of my practice are people who have been to lots of conventional allopathic medicine doctors, and they just are fed up with without getting any solutions to their issues, whether it’s a chronic rash, or headaches or hair falling out, or ringing in the ears, or thyroid, thyroid, skewed hormones, all the things you mentioned, diabetes, blood sugar dysregulation, and the doctor just kind of gives them a pill. I had a patient today I walk in, and I just started working with him. He walked in for his first appointment. After two weeks, I put them on my detox and he goes, I just stopped taking my blood pressure medication that he would just put on a couple weeks before I met him. He said, “My blood pressure is totally normal now.” All his body aches are gone. He doesn’t have any digestive issues in two weeks. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  10:56

That’s incredible. Yeah, yeah. So it sounds like to me, you’re finding things out about your patients that a traditional doctor can’t even find out about them.

Risa Groux  11:09

Actually, I have a very big sector of my practice, working with doctors as patients. So.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  11:16

I’ve seen a lot of unhealthy doctors, it seems to me that like some of the doctors that I see at a load local clinic, they’re overweight, they smoke, they drink a lot of coffee. And they do a lot of sitting around. Here, really good role models.

Risa Groux  11:35

Yeah, exactly. They’re no different than any of us and you know, in the population, you know, and part of it is, you know, I’m working with with a physician right now, who works seven days a week from 6am to 6pm. And then he has seven days off. So what is that doing your adrenal glands, right, you’re either on the go pedal or you’re on the off on the brake pedal. So it’s, some of it is their training. And they they’ve had this, you know, tough situation, but a lot of it is that they don’t have the tools to look they can’t figure out going on with their body. Yeah, because really predicated all of our labs are predicated on what the insurance company is going to approve. So the insurance company doesn’t tell you to look at zip there’s fatty liver, or is your bile sludgy? Are you able to digest your fats? They they’re not looking at that.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  12:23

Exactly, exactly. So what are the most common chronic health issues that you’re seeing at the moment?

Risa Groux  12:31

Number one, that we’re seeing just a consistent, elevated number of people who are dealing with blood sugar dysregulation. And there really isn’t a day that I go through labs with people that I do not tell them, they either have insulin resistance, or pre diabetes, or both. Wow, that’s mine. And that is the driver of disease that causes third stage inflammation, inflammation drives disease. So unfortunately, this is the statistics for one out of every third three children born in America today will be type two diabetic, one out of three. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:08

So why is this?

Risa Groux  13:10

Because we have carbs at every corner, we have sugar in every coffee, and every soda in every juice in every bread in every pasta, it’s sugar is abound. We are assuming at least this is an old number. But this is from 2018. The average american consumer and the average american person is consuming 152 pounds of sugar per year. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:36

Oh my gosh!

Risa Groux  13:38

I don’t even have a pound. So somebody else is taking my 152 pounds. So we are we’re eating sleeves of cookies and cereal that’s filled with with sugar. Our coffee addiction is just unconscionable these mothers take these kids into these coffee shops. And they come out with the frappuccinos that is just 63 grams of sugar. Oh, and would you like some whipped cream on that? Sure. Why not? Right and then we have things in pink things and cookies and everything and donuts and everything. I don’t know about humorous about when I grew up. It was, “oh, you’re hungry? Don’t worry about it dinner soon.” Right? Here once boundary, oh my gosh, get a snack. They gotta have a snack. We can’t be hungry. It’s okay to be hungry for a few hours. We’ll be fine. Right? How many meals do sit down for that you’re hungry for.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  14:30

And you appreciate the food then when you’re hungry. You appreciate the meal. Yeah, rather than getting in trouble for not finishing it. Right?

Risa Groux  14:39

Exactly. So we’re not hungry. So because we’re caught we’re grazing all day long. Our portions are way out of control. They used to be smaller now they’re larger. And we’re just we’re on the sugar diet. We’re eating fruit and carbs and sugar, pastries and baked goods and everywhere. Chip have chips for everybody all the time.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  15:03

Yes. And people aren’t burning off that energy either, are they? I mean, would it make a difference, if they did burn that energy off or it doesn’t matter?

Risa Groux  15:12

It would help a little bit extra diet, exercise does help stabilize blood sugar, but you’re still probably going to be insulin resistant. When you’re putting when you’re asking your pancreas to make a lot of insulin, because you’re constantly putting in carbs or sugars into your diet and your body, the pancreas gets tired. And then the cells, they have these receptors on them, and they get injured, so you become insulin resistant. So most can I’ve never seen a conventional doctor ever in my life order labs to see if somebody’s insulin resistant. That’s the first stage before pre-diabetes. So if we can back that out, before we get pre-diabetic, wouldn’t that be nice?

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  15:53

Absolutely. Prevention is better than cure, you know, the old cliche saying, So what are some of the other diseases that you’re seeing, at the moment?

Risa Groux  16:02

A lot of thyroid dysregulation. And that’s for a myriad of reasons, we have a lot of heavy metals and mercury and toxins in our system. So the toxins are really doing a disservice to our endocrine system. So that’s our thyroid, or adrenal glands, and our sex hormones. So I see a lot of dysregulation in the adrenal gland. I mean, in the endocrine system, and thyroids a big deal. And typically, when somebody goes in for thyroid, they’re gonna give them a medication, you’re going to give them a T for they’re not going to give them a T three, they’re not even going to test for their T three, they’re not going to test to see if they’re reversing to see if their cortisol is affecting it, they’re not going to test to see if their hormones are affecting it. So we just get a pill for an L. But we don’t even know if it’s really working. And I test all the time. And you know, today I had somebody I was like, “Wow, your medications working.” It’s rare that I get to say that, but sometimes it does, but most times it doesn’t. And we have to look. So we see a lot of thyroid, and unfortunately, we’re going to continue to see a lot of autoimmune, because we’re just getting worse and worse. A third of autoimmune is genetics. But another major factor that I would say the second in line is leaky gut. And given the fact that we’re eating all these chemicals, and processed foods with bad oils, and every restaurant and all the chips and cereals and the baked goods usually contain bad oils. And here in America, we have a pretty wide range of what’s legal. Were approved for 86,000 chemicals, over three of which we can eat, we spray our food with chemicals. I have a couple of supplements in my office, I use the samples with dyes in them. I don’t know if I’m in Australia, they let dyes in but we have one supplement with corn oil, soybean oil, titanium dioxide, which is the worst endocrine disruptor ever. And then three dyes like that’s supposed to help macular degeneration, that’s going to give you macular degeneration because it’s so highly inflammatory. It’s going to cause inflammation. It’s not going to hell.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  18:08

Yeah. So what did a couple of questions here? What are the different types of autoimmune diseases that you’re seeing? I mean, what is an autoimmune disease?

Risa Groux  18:22

Let’s back up there. So autoimmune basically is when your body is producing a lot of antibodies, and it needs to find a place to park so it’s looking for an organ, a gland or a tissue. So let’s rheumatoid arthritis. Those antibodies are attacking the joints, Hashimoto thyroiditis, it’s attacking the thyroid. Fibromyalgia is attacking the joints, I’m sorry, the muscles, and so so on and so on, and so on. And there’s over 200 different types of autoimmune diseases. And again, third of its genetics, part of it, a big part of it is leaky gut. And then there’s, you know, toxins vitamin D deficiency, a gene mutation, I test for all the time called MTHFR. Viruses contribute up Epstein Barr Virus, which a lot of people tend to have it’s inactive, it should be inactive dormant in the body. And then something happened like a big stressful event. Bad diet, too much sugar, too much alcohol, not enough sleep and it becomes activated. And so that can set off it can just regulate your thyroid, your blood sugar, and it can spawn up to 33 autoimmune diseases.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  19:32

Oh my gosh. Yep. So what’s what’s the difference between a good oil and a bad oil then?

Risa Groux  19:39

Yeah, and just finishing that and then I’ll get to the oil. Yeah, is when you’re when you have these antibodies and it starts to attack. It thinks that it’s the enemy, whatever it’s attacking. So you need to quell that inflammation. And what happens is your T reg cells, you start to create what’s called TH 17. And you get into what’s called a cytokine, Storm and cytokine mines are inflammatory molecules, and you’re in this state of inflammation, you got a major fire in the basement. So conventional medicine gives you a little squirt gun maybe and says Here, take this pill, this will manage it until it work right? Then we’ll give you another pill, and then we’ll take body parts up. But what I do is I try and put that fire out. And really, you know, I’m calling the fire department, I’m getting hoses out, and let’s get that fire out so that we don’t, and then I’m gonna go down the root causes and see if we can prevent getting more because once you have one, it’s likely you’ll start to accumulate them. As far as bad oils are concerned, this is a problem. I don’t know how it is there. But here, you know, it’s cheaper to have low cost oils that are highly processed and are highly inflammatory. Those would be canola oil, most restaurants, canola oil or some blend of canola oil, vegetable oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, corn oil. These are major, really a lot of inflammation. Yeah. Yeah. And they’re in a lot of almost every processed food. And they’re in almost every restaurant, I go to very nice restaurants. And I asked what kind of oil do you use? And I’ve been to five star spas and I’ve been in the kitchen and, what kind of oil do you use, and they always usually give me Oh, we use a blend. And I say okay, because then they can say that, you know, they have some olive oil in there. But they probably have a lot of olive oil. And most of its canola oil, because it’s cheap. It doesn’t go doesn’t have smell, it doesn’t have taste, and it causes a lot. It causes trans fats and hydrogen. It’s causes inflammation. I’m actually working with a rheumatoid arthritis person right now. We got her completely out of pain, which is amazing. And then it came back a little bit. So I started to ask her what oil she’s using at home. And she was using olive oil. And I said on the stove and high heat. She said yes. Well, when you use olive oil at high heat, it becomes rancid and inflammatory.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  22:01

Oh my gosh! I have a firm moment there. I was thinking I’m doing really well here, because I don’t have a lot of sugar. And in terms of oils, being Italian, we use olive oil. We don’t have all the other oils because our taste buds don’t like the other oils.

Risa Groux  22:21

And olive oil is fantastic oil. But I wouldn’t use it at low temperature or raw. I use it for every one of my salads. But when high heat, that would be avocado oil, it would be coconut oil. And Ghee has a high smoke point as well. So it doesn’t go rancid and it doesn’t cause inflammation.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  22:41

Wow, that’s incredible. And what are some of the other foods that we need to stay away from because I did read somewhere or I heard somewhere I’ve got it written down that so does a bad sugar replacements and additives if we cut we don’t recognize the names of anything that’s on the back of a box or a packet. We shouldn’t buy it. They are the kinds of things that you believe also?

Risa Groux  23:07

Oh, absolutely. So think of it this way. Our bodies were created whenever that was, you know, I don’t know, millions years ago or 1000s of years ago. And at that time, you know, our goal is living organisms is I mean always from that day on is to survive and procreate. So we were able to eat things that were crawling on the ground and sprouting from the earth. That’s what we did. And then years later the Industrial Revolution came and we started to have chemicals, lots and lots and lots of chemicals. So as I mentioned, the FDA has approved 86,000 chemicals for us to use. So we’re eating them we’re putting them in our hair our, shampoo, our conditioner, our nail polish, our deodorant right into the skin, our perfumes and dry cleaners in the the chairs, the fire retardant chemicals. I mean, there’s chemicals everywhere, right? And so we in America, we spray our most of our soil or all of our conventional soil with glyphosate, which is a weed killer because they don’t or I and pesticide, they don’t want to have pesticides in their profits. So they’re just putting in. It’s glyphosate with glyphosate in our rain, and glyphosate does a tremendous damage to the body. So what I say to people is, you know, we have this body that was born to eat food. And so I people I work with, imagine that your body is just like a sneaker factory, you’ve got all the equipment to make a sneaker. So I know if I can be leather and rubber on campus, we’re gonna get a sneaker. But if I say let’s put some cellphone parts in your sneaker factory, what would happen? I mean, our equipment would break, right? We’d have the cell phone factory to put those cellphone parts in there in that factory to make a cellphone. So what happens is we’re putting a lot of cell phone parts in our sneaker factory. So we are breaking down we are deteriorating, and we’re a mess. And then we just keep eating processed foods, and we just keep getting worse and we take more medication and, and you know, we plug a hole in the front of the boat, but three more pop in the back. And then we just keep doing this chase, right? 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  25:11

Absolutely. I’ve read the book many years ago, by Louise Hay, You Can Heal Your Body. And for me when I read that, I think it was back in the late 80s. It was mind blowing for me. And I was I was in a place Fortunately, that I was open to all these ideas that she was proposing. And one thing that I will never forget is her description of disease. She calls it dis-ease. So how much of this do you believe is being exacerbated by stress and anxiety, and all the issues that come along with being under the pump over time as as a as a race at the moment?

Risa Groux  25:57

100%. 100% has been affected by that. And there’s different types of stress or adrenal glands that sit right on top of our kidneys that are stressed modulators. So they handle whatever stress is coming at us. So it could be work family, environment, food stress, and, you know, toxins or whatever it is, relationship stress, whatever stress you have, I mean, it’s natural to have stress, but chronic stress the way we have it now chronically working, chronically eating bad foods, chronically breathing in pesticides and eating pesticide, this is a chronic assault on our adrenal glands. And there’s only so much they can do. And they give out, I test people all the time, and they give out they say, I’m done. I cannot handle this workload. And then people walk in here, they crawl in here exhausted.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  26:47

Sorry for laughing, I can kind of relate to that right at the moment. I just go. I’m so overwhelmed right now. And it’s a horrible feeling.

Risa Groux  26:57

Right? We do it to ourselves to but it’s our society.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  27:00

We do it to ourselves, we overcommit. It’s like, oh, we have half an hour gap there. Oh, we better fill that half an hour. See, I’m not very good at relaxing. I do. I do have little practices during the day that kind of settle me down. But oh, my gosh, over commitment is a big thing for me. So how do we start reversing some of these medical problems? Is it different by the issue? Or is it different by the person or a combination of both? 

Risa Groux  27:34

It’s, it’s usually always different by the person because depending on what your labs look like, your health status, what’s going on? It’s died, right? Do we have parasites to him? You know, pathogens, whatever that is. So that depends upon the person, but everyone would benefit by just changing what they eat. Everybody, no matter what your condition is. So read your labels, right? Know what is what is coming into the building be really picky. Right? We’re really picky about what we put on the outside of our body. We’re not that picky about what goes on the inside. So I need every label. And as you said, if you can’t pronounce it, if you don’t know what it is, don’t eat it. That’s right, yes, we’ll need it. And so if we just ate real food, if we started putting in sneaker parts, right, leather, rubber and canvas into our machinery, we’re going to do great. So animal protein, vegetables, sweet potatoes, and yams, good fats, eggs, nuts, seeds, avocado oil, olive oil, and those are the things that are going to make us thrive. So that’s what I would say is just minimize or get rid of as many toxic foods and bad oils that you possibly can. I don’t know how it is over there. But here we’re having a full crisis as far as cooking. I have three brothers and not one other than all the cooks in the family, not one of the wives cook. And so it’s the husband story cooking lunch, there’s nothing wrong with that, but they’re kind of slapping it together. And what happened to the to the people in the kitchen who were cooking, we now order in. We go out, we don’t cook you know, I looked at it as a kid I’m working with right now. He’s in college and and I looked at him and I said well, do you never eat home for lunch? And he kind of looks at me like is that even an option? He just goes out orders in and with conveniences of post-mating and door dashing people just order in.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  29:37

Yes, I know. I know. See, I love a good leftover for lunch. I love leftovers. It sounds. Some people might go yuck. But I don’t enjoy eating sandwiches from a store or don’t eat fast food. And I just love having a protein in the salad something that’s leftover. My husband tends to barbecue. And we tend to have barbecues protein with a salad most evenings. And then I just eat the leftovers for lunch. But I really enjoyed that I couldn’t think of anything worse than having a bag of hot chips or fries, as you call them, I would be asleep. By about two o’clock in the afternoon, it would make me so lethargic. And I find even having bread at lunch, I have a big come down from bread. By about three o’clock, I find that I didn’t know is that your insulin levels start to drop or stewing something?

Risa Groux  30:39

Your sugar levels are spiking when you eat the bread. And if you eat fat or protein or fiber, it will lessen that spike, but it will still spike it. You know, if your deli on that bread that’s just gonna, you know skyrocket you to the ceiling. So you want to eat your protein first, you want to have your your vegetable carbohydrates next, and then any kind of sweet or bread kind of thing that would be last, it’s gonna have the least impact on your blood sugar spike. Yeah, and if apple cider vinegar, before you even have that carb, it’s going to lessen that spike.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  31:15

Apple cider vinegar? Yeah. Okay, so okay, so does that neutralize what that food is going to do?

Risa Groux  31:19

It helps that spike not go so hot. Okay, a little bit of water and give it a good chug, and then have your sweet or your carb and it’s going to lessen your spike for sure.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  31:34

And I was now I’m very fascinated in your book Food Frame, you offer a roadmap for people to follow. And you provide information about the best suited eating lifestyle, for one’s health status to optimize their wellness. And there are different opinions, different philosophies on foods, there are different diets, and we’re being bombarded by the media every single day. And if you watch the morning show in the morning, they will tell you a different story to what the evening news tells you. I mean, it’s so confusing. And then there are all these different diets. And you go through these in your book, which you have beside you, Food Frame. So do you want to talk about those diets, because you say that some of them actually, there are benefits and pitfalls for each depending on what your health status is.

Risa Groux  32:33

So as I was mentioning earlier, I started to customize things because, you know, we all had that new book that came out and everybody was reading it. And we said, this is the best we went on that eating program, whether it was a diet or an eating plan, and we’d get all these people who would just thrive on it. And then we’d get people who just didn’t, oh, I can’t do that. That didn’t work for me, I can’t get into ketosis or I can’t eat all that, whatever it is. And so they’re not thriving on that. So what I realized is we shouldn’t be eating to our health status. So I use, I start people off with my detox, which is a two week program. And you’re cleaning out the liberty of cleaning out the blood, you’re optimizing the function of the body, and you are taking out the trash, which is really important. So you’re having collagen shakes twice a day, you’re having protein, fat, and fiber, and then you’re eating food, protein, fat and fiber, so that you’re you’re satiated, you really are not that hungry. And I mean, like I had today, this guy who came in, who just got off his blood pressure medications that he just isn’t normalized. So a lot of things, he doesn’t have any joint pain, I mean, all those things went away for him in two weeks. Now he just got his labs back, he’s got a lot more work to do. But we had a really major turnaround just by cleaning out his body and giving him a little bit bit of bumpers on the food. And so after that, I recommend people take my food frame quiz or unless you know what your what your diagnosis is, but take your food frame quiz, so that you know what your health status is and what’s best for you. So after that, in the book, I highlight the six different diet types or eating lifestyles that I use 99% of the time. Occasionally, I have to go rogue and do something different Candida, diarrhea, things like that. But these are the mainstream diet that everybody pretty much falls into. So I’ll break them down for you because I do have a who’s best for and who’s who this is not a great fit for. And then I have all the ingredients of all the foods that you should enjoy and all the foods that you would should avoid. So the first one if there’s any blood sugar dysregulation I’m going to recommend to. I’m going to recommend paleo diet which is stands for the Paleolithic Diet. And this is basically created on the basis of the caveman. And it was its philosophy is that whoever created us, whatever that was we were eating the foods that were available to us and that we should still be eating that those are the parts of our machinery. That’s where we thrive. And so it talks a lot about quality, and meats that are grass fed, and grass finished and not filled with antibiotics and growth hormones, and pastured raised poultry and wild fish, and then vegetables, and good fats and games, things like that. And I find that to be the most broadest appeal, most people do really, really well with Paleo, and you can stay on Paleo for a lifetime. So it’s really easy, it’s easy to travel, it’s just easy to function on that. And that goal is to decrease systemic inflammation, and increase good gut health and stabilize blood sugars. So I love Paleo, I think it’s the easiest one, and it’s the one I use the most. Then there’s keto and keto is short for ketosis. And when you’re in when the body gets into the state of ketosis, it’s basically when you are switching your fuel source from sugar or carbs that we all do. Instead, we use fat as a fuel source, we’re burning ketones so that we’re burning fat for fuel. And this is a very high fat eating lifestyle. So 75 to 85% of your daily calories should be in some form of fat, so a lot of animal protein, eggs, cheese, cream, butter, all of that stuff, because you have to get into the state of ketosis if you can, I was never able to do it without exogenous ketones. And so you need to have a lot of fat to sustain you. And then very little carbs less than 5%. So no more than 20 net carbs, generally, for people to also get out of the state of ketosis. And the challenge with keto is that it’s very difficult to get a lot of fiber and because all the fiber sources have carbs, so you can’t have too much. So I am a big fan of keto for people with major blood sugar dysregulation. If you walk in and you’ve got diabetes and insulin resistance, I’m going to suggest keto if you if you are eligible. So people who are not eligible of keto would be somebody who has a gallbladder that’s been taken out that it would not be a good fit for you. I test a stool test. So I look for sciatica to see if you have any fat malabsorption. If you do that’s not right for you, I look at your GGT or how sludgy your bile is if you can digest Bad’s, so if that’s high, that’s not Viviane, gallstones or anything like that this is not for you. And a lot of women don’t do as well as men, men tend to thrive with keto, and people who have chronic stress, there it is, again, don’t tend to perform very well and not really, they’re not really able to get into the state of ketosis. Though there’s a lot of exceptions to that. And I don’t recommend keto for a long period of time, I recommend it for three months, and then get off for a bit, take a break and get some carbs in there a bit and, and then a month or two later, you can get back on to ketosis. But again, not everybody does. So I would suggest taking a urine test to make sure in the mornings that you are in the state of ketosis, and then I have the AIP. That is the Autoimmune Protocol. And that is what I would recommend for anybody with autoimmune disease, whether you have it, whether you have 1, 2, 3, or anybody who’s afraid of getting in who has immediate family who has a lot of it, I would recommend the Autoimmune Protocol for you. This is also an elimination diet 30 to 90 days, very strict. It takes Paleo, and then it removes a lot from Paleo. So we’re taking out nightshades those are potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, goji berries, they’re very high in what’s called lectins, which I’ll get to in a minute, and they cause a lot of inflammation. So we take up nuts, seeds, eggs, lots of vegetables with high lectins are removed a little bit in Paleo, but you’re having animal protein, vegetables, organ meats, no coffee, no chocolate, no alcohol. So it’s pretty strict. But I have to say that 100% of the time that people have complied, including myself, we see amazing results with a good AIP diet. And that is really to decrease your systemic inflammation and increase your good. It’s going to also decrease your blood sugar’s most likely with that. And then once you get off the AIP, if you are autoimmune, I recommend the lectin or the Paleo program. And lectins are basically under this umbrella that we call anti-nutrients. And we all have as living organisms, we have a way to cope with date. So we our goal, as I mentioned is to survive and procreate for any living organism. And so human beings we have the ability to flee Kickbike screen we all call 911. Plains don’t have that ability. So they have what I call a hard candy shell around the germ or the seed and they say “Well, if you’re going to break me down, I’m going to do whatever I can to survive and procreate.” So you know who you are, it’s the people who eat the hummus or the beans and they bloat, bloat, bloat because they can’t break it down, right, they don’t have enough acid in their stomach to break it down. But those are foods that are very high in lectins. So it would be great for you to continue to be on a low leptin diet to make sure you’re not driving your inflammation. And then we have the low FODMAP. And low FODMAP is great and FODMAP stands. It’s an acronym and it stands for Fermentable, Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. And in plain English, these are carbohydrates that are absorb water. I know I’m throwing a lot of information. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  40:43

I know I’m listening so carefully, because I don’t want to miss anything. This is really interesting.

Risa Groux  40:49

It’s all in my book. But in case you do, but, these are carbohydrates that absorb water. So these are for the people who are chronic bloaters, right, they have chronic bloating every day, it might be coupled with chronic diarrhea or chronic constipation or alternating. And these are people who typically have what’s called SIBO, Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth. And they may also have IBS, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or Irritable Bowel Disease, and so low FODMAP would be perfect for them.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  41:19

That sounds like it should be me. I blowed so easily.

Risa Groux  41:23

Try it. Are you taking a digestive enzyme?

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  41:26

No, I don’t know what that is.

Risa Groux  41:29

Digestive enzyme. We’re paying great again, enzymes, hydrochloric as we have all these digestive enzymes that we produce and excrete from the time we’re born to the time we age. But as we age, we produce and excrete less and less. So it’s really important. I usually say anybody 45 or older, you’re gonna get a digestive enzyme. I have plenty of 25 year olds on him, because if they’re bloating, and they can’t digest, and they have these issues, they’re having heartburn acid reflux, they need a digestive enzyme to help break down that food. So.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  42:00

Is that like, what about because I have probiotics? Is that the kind of thing? Or is that something else?

Risa Groux  42:07

Probiotics are what feeds the good guys in the bacteria in the microbiome. And digestive enzymes are what gives the acid to help break down that food. If we don’t have a lot of acid in our stomach, we typically get heartburn acid reflux occurred. And we can’t break down that food. So what do we do we call on our friend bacteria, methane gas production. And we call in the gas so that we can help break it down. And that’s what you’re doing. So I would try that first to see how you do my Enzyme Max has all the big reductions and hydrochloric acid and ox bile for fat malabsorption. Not a lot of digestive enzymes have all those. So I would look for something that has at least something like that, or Enzyme Max would work. I love my Enzyme Max, I will not leave home without it.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  42:52

“Enzyme Max,” I’m writing this down.

Risa Groux  42:57

So low FODMAP is also very strict, the stricter you are at the beginning, the better off you’ll be. And it is a 30 to 90 day elimination. And you can redo this all the time, if you want to do I mean I wouldn’t live on it, but a lot of people do. But I would get to the root cause of why you need to. But if you really get to the root cause and you do have some stuff going on, then fix it. But low FODMAP would definitely be a way to starve that bacteria that’s parked itself in the small intestine rather than the large.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  43:27

Yes, yes. And what about vegan?

Risa Groux  43:31

And that’s the last one is vegan, vegetarian. And I’m not an enormous fan of vegetarian or vegans because I really firmly believe that we need some animal protein. I am a former vegan myself. And when I was eating vegan, I wasn’t eating bread, pasta, ice cream, Cheerios, none of that. But I was actually eating real plants, lot of plants and animals and plant based proteins. And I had hummus and lentils and garbanzo beans and black beans I basically lived off of those. And as I did my blood work through the years, I watched my blood sugar’s go up and up and up, and it’s a lot of carbs. So I don’t think that it is the best for everyone. But there are some people that may thrive in it. And there’s a lot of people who culturally or religiously don’t eat meat. So I talk about what different types of vegetarians there are and what what to do and how to best thrive being a vegetarian.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  44:28

Yes, because I heard from an another new what he was a nutritionist, that the concern is that with a lot of vegans, they’re eating a vegan alternative like a or a meat alternative. I should say you go to McDonald’s or you go wherever it is, and they have these vegan burgers. No one knows what’s in there.

Risa Groux  44:52

They’re filled with inflammatory oils. And so that’s good not gonna happen to tyroid so a lot it’s a process product just like everything else, right? It’s just a junk food that’s unprocessed product. So yeah, there’s different types of vegetarians. I’ve heard about this in the book, you know, there’s vegetarians who eat pasta and bread and Oreos, and Cheerios, and Coke and french fries. And then there’s a vegetarian who actually eats a lot of vegetables, and plant based proteins. So it’s really important if you are vegetarian to make sure you’re getting fuel for your body and not just processed crap. That’s vegetarian.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  45:29

Yes. I just want to now just touch on quickly, in regards to detox, you did mention about the detoxification. And I think with a lot of people that’s really scary, the thought of cutting everything out that they really enjoy. Is there a simple way to detox? Like if I just say, sometimes when I go away, for example, and I come back, you know, I’ve been over indulging in so many things, foods, I wouldn’t normally eat more alcohol that I would normally consume. I come back feeling a bit sluggish. And I often say, I just feel like I want to clean out my body. What is there something that you recommend that is really easy, and a simple way to do that without cutting out everything that you love?

Risa Groux  46:18

Yeah, so the difference between my detox and something like that is that I have amino acids and antioxidants that open up pathways one and two for liver detoxification, and blood detoxification, and it optimizes the organs, now you’re talking a little bit more of a reset than a detox. Okay, yes. And a reset would be great. I mean, just stop anything that has a label a foods from the farm, right, so cow, and fish and chicken and lamb or whatever it is that you like, and then vegetables, eat some sweet potatoes, some eggs and nuts, seeds, things like that, and don’t have anything that has labels. So if they have labels, they’re processed, they’re from a factory. And you know, I go to the natural food show every year. And there’s 1000s, hundreds of 1000s of people and hundreds of 1000s of booths. And it gets bigger and bigger every year, they keep taking all the hotels right around them, because we have so many “healthy” junk food. And I remind people, this is still not from a farm. This is from factory, and it might have clean ingredients, but it’s still from a factory. So I think we have to be cognizant of how many processed foods we’re eating. And I just think that’s very important. So and it’s not realistic to say I’m never going to eat any cookies or crackers or tortillas or whatever it is. But look at the ingredients and just really minimize that. Make sure your oils are clean and decrease your systemic inflammation.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  47:51

So other than the digestive enzymes are there other kinds of supplements we should be taking on a daily basis.

Risa Groux  47:59

I don’t work with anybody who’s not taking vitamin D unless they’re really high in the low every other day or something like that. But vitamin D is critically important. We cannot make bone without it. We need it for thyroid brain, gut, heart, anti cancer, anti aging, I mean it affects everything. And so vitamin D even though we live in Southern California, a ton of people almost everybody is deficient. And I saw the lowest one today at 13. I’ve never seen that low. And so we really need it and I everybody’s on a vitamin D with me my d3 Ultra with K because we need that for absorption. And then everybody is in my office is taking V Ultra, which is a B vitamin, talk about stress when we’re stressed we eat a ball of B vitamins in our intestinal lining. It’s critical for RNA, DNA. But B vitamins are really, really important. There’s a gene mutation that I test for called MTHFR. That is a very common gene mutation. I haven’t both my kids have it, it’s 100% genetic, and it makes you unable to mentalize either your B 12. And or your folate. So I test everybody to find out which alleles they have. But I give them my V Ultra which is a complex B and it’s all in methylcobalamin form so they can absorb it. And those are the ones that I everybody’s on. Now the Fab Five I do for inflammation is vitamin D, my omega max this omega three fatty acids glutathione or mas Dan Antra, antioxidant Tumeric Max major for inflammation as is resveratrol. And that comes with quesiton too. So those are my Fab Five for anybody with major inflammation or in autoimmune disease states. And then I have various things like gut reboot, which is really helpful for gut repair. If you have leaky gut, I use gut reboot all the time. And then I’ve got sweet, which is really helpful. It’s a binder and remover of of antigens, so very helpful for anybody who has constipation, things like that. I have a myriad of supplements and so at depends on what’s best for you.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  50:01

Reminds me of the Real Hot Housewives of Beverly Hills, Lisa Randall, one of the housewives, she walks around with a little bag full of all these different colored pills and sits there and eat. has them with a meal. Maker? Yes, she definitely is. Is there anything else from your book that you would like to share with us?

Risa Groux  50:24

You know, I’m a big person on thyroid and thyroid is really important. So I talk about the breakdown of the thyroid testing, I just released a course called Achieving Optimal Thyroid Health. And it’s really critical because so many people suffer with thyroid, whether you have nodules, or thyroidectomy, or you’re hyper or hypo. And it’s it’s just always changing. And it’s really important to get it right, not just for weight loss, but for every part of the body. That’s, you know, the thyroid affects most systems in the body. So it’s really important to make sure that your thyroid is good. I go through a lot of the labs and what I test for I have a lot of information on what labs I use. And there’s it’s just packed full of information along with some really fun and easy recipes for each different food frame.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  51:13

Yes. And the thing is to just talking about thyroid problems, most people don’t realize that they have a thyroid problem. Correct?

Risa Groux  51:23

Because their doctor for TSH? But yes, you have a thyroid problem.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  51:27

Correct. So what’s your mission?

Risa Groux  51:30

I want to turn on the light bulb for every human being on this planet to say that how food reacts to them and how food can be our helper. You know, it’s it really is the best medicine we have. And we really need to be cognizant of what we’re eating, and where are these chemicals are coming from and really detoxify and just decrease our toxic load. We’re getting sicker and sicker and sicker and fatter and fatter and fatter. And this process, quick, grab and go drive thru ordering is not doing us any favors at all, we should reverse this, get back to sitting in a big table with our loved ones, and making food from the earth. And then we will do a lot better. It will be great for our cortisol to be great for our guts. And that is the message I would love to give to the world. That’s my life’s work.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  52:20

Yes. And what are you up to next?

Risa Groux  52:23

Oh, gosh, I’m just doing a ton of speaking engagements and presentations and TV appearances. And I run a very, very big, big practice. So it’s very, very busy. And you know, I love watching people heal. I just don’t think there’s anything cooler.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  52:39

Yeah, absolutely. You’re doing an amazing job Risa. Thank you so much. Yes. And we’re going to share all your information in the show notes where people can buy your book, where they can find you, they can go to your website where they can find you on social, we will share all of that with the listeners in the show notes. So if people want to learn more, they certainly can. This has been so fascinating. And I wish that we could spend longer on here because I personally have a million questions. So I probably will reach out to you at some stage. But thank you so much for being on the show. I really appreciate you taking time out of that very busy schedule that I know you have at the moment with especially the launch of your book. You have a lot of engagements at the moment. So thank you so much and…

Risa Groux  53:33

Thank you so much for having me and I’m happy to help. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  53:36

Yeah, and wishing you all the very best in the future.

Risa Groux  53:40

Thank you and you the same. Okay.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  53:42

Thank you Risa. Take care.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  53:50

Thank you so much for listening to this episode of A Voice and Beyond. I hope you enjoyed it as now is an important time for you to invest in your own self-care, personal growth and education. Use every day as an opportunity to learn and to grow so you can show up feeling empowered and ready to live your best life. If you know someone who will also be inspired by this episode, please be sure to copy and paste the link and share it with them. Or share it on social media and use the hashtag #AVoiceAndBeyond. I promise you I am committed to bringing you more inspiration and conversations just like this one every week. And if you would like to help me please rate and review this podcast and cheer me on by clicking the subscribe button on Apple Podcast right now. But I would also love to know what it is that you most enjoyed about this episode and what was your biggest takeaway. Please take care and I look forward to your company next time on the next episode of A Voice and Beyond.

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