...
Smiling woman wearing bright blue earrings, a black top, and hand resting on her cheek with a blue wall behind her

Adrenal Fatigue and Gut Issues Postpartum: Podcast Episode #182

We talk about addressing adrenal fatigue and gut issues postpartum with Maja Miller of Maja Miller Wellness.  You can listen to this complete podcast episode on iTunes, SoundCloud, or wherever you find your podcasts.

Welcome.  You’re listening to Ask the Doulas, a podcast where we talk to experts from all over the country about topics related to pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and early parenting.  Let’s chat!

Kristin:  Hello, hello.  This is Kristin with Ask the Doulas, and I am so excited to chat with Maja Miller today of Maja Miller Wellness.  She is a metabolic health coach and clinical functional nutritionist.  Welcome, Maja!

Maja:  Hi!  I’m so excited to be here.

Kristin:  So I know our main focus is all about adrenal fatigue and gut issues in the postnatal phase.  So there’s so many buzzwords around adrenal fatigue and gut issues, and our listeners may not even really understand what that’s all about.  So fill us in!

Maja:  Well, adrenal issues and gut issues are often present also prenatally.  And I often see those kind of things get worse after the delivery of the baby.  So a lot of my clients are actually moms that are either stay at home moms or they are working moms, and they’ve had one, two, three plus pregnancies.  And I think what a lot of people don’t understand is that there is that – a pregnancy is one of three kinds of stressors you can put on your body.  Let’s kind of separate adrenal and gut issues.  I’ll first kind of talk a little bit about adrenal issues, but some people, some of your listeners may have heard of this as adrenal fatigue.  Clinicians essentially call it HPA axis dysfunction.  So the HPA stands for the hypothalamus, the pituitary, and the adrenals.  And the hypothalamus and the pituitary live in your brain, and your adrenals are these two kind of sugar cube sized organs.  You have two of them.  One sits kind of right above each kidney.  And the adrenals get turned on when your fight or flight portion of your nervous system, your sympathetic nervous system, gets turned on.  So back in the day, we would be out hunting or gathering food.  We would see a tiger.  That would be perceived as a stressor, and our adrenals would kick on.  The autonomic nervous system, specifically the sympathetic nervous system, would kick on, and there would be a cortisol surge in your body.  And cortisol is really great in small amounts, and it is a catabolic steroid.  Anabolic steroids build you up, and catabolic steroids build you down.  And the difference and kind of the problem between back in the hunter gatherer days where we would have an occasional saber tooth tiger sighting, right now our stress is off the charts, and stress is the number sixth leading cause of death.  Most people don’t understand that stress isn’t just a stressful day at work.  There are three different categories of stress.  One is a physical stressor, and labor, delivery, and growing the baby prenatal and postnatal, that is a massive physical stressor on a woman.  And then the baby comes, and then there’s a lot of biochemical stressors, so things like not getting enough sleep.  Maybe you’re not eating appropriately.  Antibiotic use, alcohol use, over the counter medicines, inflammatory foods, exposure to pesticides and insecticides, these are all biochemical stressors.  And then you’ve got that third stress category that I think a lot of people are familiar with, which are perceived or emotional stressors, which postpartum – it definitely fits into that.  Am I being a good mom?  Should I breastfeed or bottle feed?  There’s so many decisions that we make in that postnatal period that can be incredibly stressful.  So once you take a step back and take a broader definition or a broader view of what is a stressor, now all of a sudden you realize that the occasional saber tooth tiger sighting has turned into constant, chronic, acute stress all day, every day, which results in flooding your system with cortisol, which means that you’re being – literally, it breaks you down at a cellular level.  So that’s kind of one of the things that I think a lot of moms are kind of dealing with in the postpartum phase, and a lot of what you deal with in the postpartum phase is linked with what you do leading up to your pregnancy, as well.   So that’s the adrenal fatigue, the HPA axis side of things.  And gut issues is a physical – can be a physical stressor or a biochemical stressor.  There may be parasites.  There may be pathogens.  You can have a bacterial overgrowth.  You can have structural damage in the gut, which leads to a very low grade sepsis.  Essentially, that’s what leaky gut is.  And that is one of those stressors that can lead to cortisol being pumped through the body.  So all of these things are very closely related, even though they’re two separate topics.

Kristin:   That makes complete sense.  So someone may have adrenal fatigue, but no gut issues?  Or do they usually go hand in hand?  Or what if someone only has gut issues and no fatigue?

Maja:  I like to take a look at symptoms.  So what are you feeling like?  And I’ll describe a very typical client of mine.  Little to no energy, problems either falling asleep or staying asleep; bloating, gas, sort of GI upsets.  That could be constipation or diarrhea or a combination of the two.  Often, no or low libido, so not interested in sex.  That’s typical in the postpartum phase for other reasons, but we’re just assuming this person is not in the phase.  A lot of skin issues, and then a lot of neurological symptoms.  So brain fog, anxiety, depression, those kinds of things, like having a hard time remembering.  Like, you’re looking at your daughter, and you can’t remember her name.  You obviously know your daughter, but you’re having a hard time figuring out what is – remembering their name.  Oftentimes, when you see those types of symptoms, it’s rarely just one things that’s happening.  And I rarely see folks that gut is completely clear and hormones are on point.  Usually, it’s a combination of things, and gut and adrenals are very closely tied together because every time that cortisol stimulates mast cells in the gut – essentially, there’s a histamine response that happens.  So stress and gut are very closely related.  It’s rare for me – these days, when you have all of those symptoms, it’s almost always gut.  What most people don’t realize is that your gut is where 80% of your immune system lives.  You have more neurons in your gut than you do in your spinal column.  You’ve got five to ten pounds of bacteria in there.  The gut is where a lot of our metabolism is at.  So gut has a very incredible role in how you respond to stress.  It’s why a lot of doctors refer to the gut as your second brain.  A lot of the times if you have gut permeability, structural issues in the gut, there can be something called leaky brain, as well.  A lot of these GI symptoms are highly correlated and tied to neurological symptoms like anxiety, depression, brain fog, those kinds of things.

Kristin:  Interesting.  So I can definitely see why a lot of your clients are seeing you early in pregnancy versus waiting until they have their baby and they’re in the postpartum recovery phase.

Maja:  Yeah, I wish that more people kind of understood just how the body is connected and how stress especially impacts babies in utero.  It’s in utero where your child’s nervous system kind of maps to your nervous system, and you can kind of impact whether or not that child is going to be kind of prone to fight or flight, which is that sympathetic nervous system, or the rest and digest, which is the parasympathetic nervous system, and you want to have a good balance of the two.  I am seven weeks away from giving birth to my first son, so this is – I was so excited to talk to you, and I miscarried about a year and a half ago or so.  I realized that my body wasn’t ready to get and stay pregnant.  And so I really over the last year and a half, two years – I’d already been doing a lot of work with kind of taking a holistic approach to my body, and where are my minerals at?  Where are my hormones?  Where are my inflammatory markers?  Am I sleeping well?  How are my energy levels?  And I had an extreme period of stress.  I would say probably extreme – probably a two year extreme period of stress, but before that, I was burning the candle at both ends.  I was an entrepreneur.  I’d moved to a new state, started my own company.  And I just knew that I needed to kind of fix some things.  It took some time, but here I am at the end of my third trimester.  I had no morning system.  I had no energy issues.  I had no crazy cravings.  I craved healthy food, but didn’t have crazy cravings for sweet things or fast food.  I’ve had little to no swelling.  It’s been amazing, and my husband likes to remind me, because I’m like, this has been such an easy pregnancy.  He likes to remind me that it was a lot of work to get me to this particular point.  So I wish that I saw more clients a year in advance.

Kristin:  Pre-conception, like when they’re talking about having kids.  It makes a lot of sense.

Maja:  Yes, but oftentimes what ends up happening is I see them after they’ve given birth or after they’re kind of done having babies, and the having given birth triggered a lot of things in them.  Sometimes that physical stressor will have triggered an autoimmune disease in them.  I wish it was the other way around.  I’d say probably 90, 95% of the time, I’m seeing folks – I’m seeing mamas after they’ve given birth, and I wish it was the other way around.

Kristin:   Yeah, of course.  It’s all about education and awareness, so now our listeners know about options, for those who are not currently pregnant.  And even if they’re in late stages of pregnancy, I’m sure that you could help them make some progress.

Maja:  Totally.  It’s never too late to start, and there’s so many things that you can do just from a lifestyle perspective that will move the needle substantially.  What I do with my clients – I’m really allergic to kind of cookie cutter programs and cookie cutter coaches that say there’s one way to do things.

Kristin:  We’re all unique.  Yeah, cookie cutter doesn’t work.

Maja:  No, and bio individuality is a very real concept, and that simply means that your metabolism is as unique as your fingerprint.  There isn’t another metabolism or fingerprint out there just like yours.  And so I think it’s really important to get a baseline for what is happening in all of your systems.  What I do with my clients is I run – once I do a medical intake with them and kind of understand, what are their symptoms, what are their main complaints, what are their past diagnoses – just spend a couple of hours really getting to know them.  Then I say, okay, I feel like we need to run some baseline labs.  So I might do blood chemistry.  I might do a lab called the GI map, which is essentially a stool sample that maps your microbiome.  If you have a history of autoimmune disease, I might run the Cyrex Array 5 to see if there’s any other kind of autoimmune predictive antibodies that are popping up.  And with every single one of my clients, I run a mineral analysis.  It’s a hair tissue mineral analysis, because minerals are just as important as hormones.  So there’s a handful of labs that I’ll run, and then that paints a picture for me.  And oftentimes, I mean, on average, my clients have seen 12 doctors before they come to me, and all of those doctors tell them that everything is fine and that all of their labs are in range and normal.  And yet all of those symptoms that I described at the beginning of our conversation – their hair is falling out.  Like, all this crazy stuff is happening.  You’re like, that’s not normal.  So oftentimes I’m able to take a look.  Look at the labs through a functional lens versus a clinical lens, and I’m able to kind of connect the dots.  And I’m not just looking at one system.  I’m looking at what’s going on with hormones, what’s going on with gut, what’s going on with mineral levels.  There’s all sorts of labs that I can run that paint a picture that tell me, oh, okay, this is why you’re having the skin issues.  This is why you’re having some brain fog issues.  And then I’m able to use those labs to kind of create tailored protocols to reverse those symptoms.  And I think that’s really – that’s really the goal.  One of my clients that I’m kind of in the process of wrapping up with in the next month or so – she is one of the few where I’m working with her because having a baby is a goal, and when I first started working with her – this was probably in June – her main complaints were lack of energy and fatigue, often at a scale of 8.  So from a scale of 1 to 10, it was like an 8.  So pretty high, right?  Bloating and cramping on a scale of 1 to 10, a 7.  Periodic weight gain – she kind of ranked that as a 5.  Anxiety often at a 3.  Periodic stress was a 2.  And so one of the first things that I do – you take this test.  It’s a medical intake where I figure out what is your metabolic chaos scorecard.  And metabolic chaos is not good.  You want to have as low a score as possible.  When I first started working with her, her metabolic chaos score was 178, which is very high.  I just had her take it again, and she had a 60% improvement.  Her metabolic chaos score is now a 70.

Kristin:  That’s amazing!

Maja:  And there’s another kind of intake that I do.  It’s called an adrenal stress causes that tells me where is the majority of your stress.  Is it mental emotional?  Is it environmental?  Is it lifestyle?  Is there metabolism stress?  So she went from a 69 to a 41, so that’s about a 40% decrease in stress.  And the metabolic chaos score improved by about 60%.  So what I’m doing is decreasing stress and increasing vital reserve, which means that you’re more likely to be able to get pregnant and stay pregnant, which is kind of the goal that all moms have.

Kristin:   Absolutely.  That is impressive.  What a case study!

Maja:  Yeah, I’m super proud of her.  I just had a call with her today, so she’s very top of mind for me.  I’m super proud of her, and yeah, she wants to be a mom, and she wants – we as moms want to give our kids the best chance at having healthy productive lives, and if we take a look at the incidence of autoimmune disease in kids, allergies in kids, asthma in kids –

Kristin:  It’s so high right now, yes.

Maja:  It is, and a lot of this stuff is environment, right?  Like, genes take millions of years to change, and this is all changed very much within a generation or two.  Like, I am 44 years old, and I don’t remember any kids that have peanut allergies.  Maybe one kid in my class, grade school, may have had an inhaler and had asthma.  But now it’s rare if you don’t have some sort of gnarly food allergy.  A lot of that is environmental.  Nothing in our genes has changed to trigger that big of a difference within a generation or two, so a lot of this is, what can you do prenatally, but as you said, it’s never too late to start.  There are always things that you can do.

Kristin:  Yes, exactly.  And so what is a typical amount of time that you are seeing your clients?  I mean, I’m sure it varies because everyone’s unique.

Maja:  Yeah, I would say probably 70% of my clients, I work with for about eight months.  And there’s maybe 20, 30% of my clients, something like that, that I will work with for about a full year.  Very rarely, if ever, am I doing – I can’t even think of a client that I’ve worked with for really more than 14 months, I would say.  And so the way that I typically work with my clients is that we do a two-month engagement, and that engagement is all of the intake, getting to know you, figuring out what labs to run, running all of the labs, and then I kind of deliver an R&R, a results and recommendations.  It’s a couple hour call where I walk you through, here’s all of your results.  Here’s how these results impact to your symptoms.  And then this is how I would want to work with you, and that’s kind of, I say, okay, I think it will take another six months, or I think it will take another eight months.  And I kind of walk them through what the high level plan would be.  And so that’s typical, so I start with that two-month engagement, and then I work with folks in six-month chunks of time.  So yeah, that’s kind of how I work with people, and I always say, like, I always ask people, well, how long have you been kind of stressed out or burning the candle at both ends or maybe not working out or maybe not eating the best?  And people are like, three years; five years; ten years.  So I think it’s really important to set the expectation at the very beginning that this isn’t going to be like an overnight, 21-day challenge kind of thing because typically when you’re seeing those kinds of symptoms that I talked about today, they’re really impacting people’s lives.  I mean, one of my clients essentially said she didn’t remember the first year of her daughter’s life, which was devastating.  She was so stressed out, had so much brain fog.  She was just so unhealthy that she doesn’t even remember.  So she was getting ready to have another baby, and she was like, I just want to do it differently this time.  So there’s some very real consequences for some of this stuff, and it’s always nice to be able to do a lot of this work ahead of time.

Kristin:  Yes.

Hey, Alyssa here.  I’m just popping in to tell you about our course called Becoming.  Becoming A Mother is your guide to a confident pregnancy and birth all in a convenient six-week online program, from birth plans to sleep training and everything in between.  You’ll gain the confidence and skills you need for a smooth transition to motherhood.  You’ll get live coaching calls with Kristin and myself, a bunch of expert videos, including chiropractic care, pelvic floor physical therapy, mental health experts, breastfeeding, and much more.  You’ll also get a private Facebook community with other mothers going through this at the same time as you to offer support and encouragement when you need it most.  And then of course you’ll also have direct email axis to me and Kristin, in addition to the live coaching calls.  If you’d like to learn more about the course, you can email us at info@goldcoastdoulas.com, or check it out at www.thebecomingcourse.com.  We’d love to see you there.

Kristin:  So are most of your clients local?  I know you offer virtual services, so do you work with people all over?

Maja:  I have two clients – three clients that are local, and the rest of my clients are international.  Japan, the UK, and then in other – they’re also in other states.  I think COVID kind of changed the way that people like to work, and they like to be able to – you know, one of my clients lives in Austin, but she happens to be in Michigan with family for the holidays.  So it’s nice that I’m, for the most part, able to send lab kits out to wherever you are.  Sometimes if you’re in a weird international location, it may not be possible, but yeah, I have clients kind of all over the world.  I just wrapped up a few months ago with a client that’s in the armed forces in Japan.  So people are all over.  It’s pretty easy to connect.

Kristin:  Yes.  So Maja, as far as our clients who are newly postpartum, what would be the difference in your depletion and just that tired state versus having full on adrenal fatigue?  When should they reach out, at what point, if they’re seen their doctor and the doctor’s like, you’re fine; you’re healthy.  This is just normal postpartum recover.

Maja:  Yeah, I don’t think that a lot of the things that we are told is normal is actually normal.  And I think that a lot of the things that we experience as women – we are told that, oh, this is just part of being a woman.  This is just part of getting older.  This is just a part of being a mom.  I know lots of moms that have children that work that didn’t experience postpartum depression where their hair didn’t fall out, where they had fairly good energy.  But they had very different lead-up to pregnancy and very different recovery in pregnancy.  And so I would say that there is no such thing as, like, normal anxiety, normal diarrhea, normal depression.  None of it is normal.  That is not how our bodies are naturally wired to operate.  But I feel like a lot of this has been normalized.  I feel that if men gave birth, grew and gave birth to children, and they felt like so many of the moms I know feel postpartum, a lot of things would change.

Kristin:  Agreed.

Maja:  Family leave would change.  What we expect our moms to do would change.  How we feed ourselves and what we take on as women would change.  And so I always like to start there.  We are hard wired to have energy, to have mental clarity, to have solid, consistent bowel movements.  That is actually baseline.  And if you are feeling any of these other things, oftentimes I can point back to micronutrient deficiencies.  Those are your vitamins, your minerals, your amino acids, your essential fatty acids.  I can point to interruptions in sleep, which is just a part of the early phase of parenthood, I know, but I can point to lack of light exposure in the iris, so your circadian rhythm is off.  I can point to a lot of lifestyle things that we can tweak to make those symptoms either completely go away or never happen to begin with.  And so there are four stages of HPA axis dysfunction, so adrenal dysfunction.  And I’d like to say it – like, it’s important.  A lot of people call it adrenal fatigue, but because there’s that axis, there could be an issue with your hypothalamus signaling to your pituitary, or there could be an issue with your pituitary signaling to your adrenals.  And so that’s why I think a lot of clinicians will kind of talk about HPA axis dysfunction, but we can just call it adrenal dysfunction or adrenal fatigue.  But there are four stages of adrenal dysfunction in that HPA axis.  The first stage is you are thriving.  You’ve got lots of energy.  You’re able to go to sleep at night.  I’m not going to talk a lot about that because most of the clients that I work with aren’t there.  They’re not there.  But the first kind of stage of HPA axis dysfunction, it’s called the stress phase.  And you may feel edgy.  Other people may be, like, too slow, so that’s how others seem to you.  Like, man, they’re just not driving fast enough, or they’re not bagging my groceries fast enough.  It may be very difficult to fall asleep at night.  Your mental function can be kind of fast and scattered.  So that’s kind of the first phase.  We’ve got some acute stress that’s happening.  When that acute stress becomes prolonged, we move into the second and kind of third dysfunctional phase.  The next phase is called tired and wired, and it’s very much what it sounds like.  You’re exhausted, but you’re kind of wired, and you have a hard time staying asleep or falling asleep.  You may feel very overwhelmed.  Other people may seem kind of incompetent to you, and your mental function is just a little erratic.  You’re bouncing around from ideas.  You’re multitasking; where was I; what was I just doing.  You’re just kind of all over the place.  When the stressors still continue, you will end up in a crash phase, and in that, you feel complete, absolute exhaustion.  You can barely make it to the end of the day.  You’re crashing in the middle of the day.  You’re trying to make it to Friday so that you can sleep all day Saturday and Sunday.  You may be sleeping a lot, but you wake up and you’re like, did I – it’s very unrefreshing, and you’re completely unable to generate ideas.  There’s a lot of brain fog here.  Oftentimes can be associated with anxiety and depression, and you’re just in a completely exhausted state.  I think that it’s good to understand all three of these phases, and you have to know yourself.  Do you have a good balance?  There’s going to be times when we’re stressed out, as long as we know how to manage that.  But if you feel like you have had prolonged stress in your life, you’ve worked with a couple of doctors, everybody’s telling you you’re fine, or they refuse to run labs is a huge red flag for me, when doctors refuse to run labs that their patients ask of them.  It’s time to get a new doctor.  And then it’s time to reach out and it’s time to get some help, and the reality is, when we’re alone at night and the music has stopped, we know if we need help, when something becomes a little bit too much.  And I would say listen to that whisper because it doesn’t get better on your own.  It gets worse.  Stress just compounds and gets worse and worse.  So I would say – gosh, I mean, reach out if you’re having any of those symptoms that we talked about today.  Like, none of it is normal.  It’s preventing you from living a big, powerful life.  And that’s kind of the marker that I use.  Are you unable to do the things that you want to do in your life, whether that’s go back to work, whether that’s participate in nonprofit work, whether that’s fully participate in your child’s life, right, because you’re so dang tired.  It’s time to throw your hand up in the air and say, I need some help, and do something different about it.  Once you’re experiencing these symptoms, it’s very difficult to make change.

Kristin:  It makes sense.  And if people are telling you that’s just normal – yeah, you hear all these other stories.  Yeah, I was tired; I was in a fog.  But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Maja:  One of the things that I love – I’ve been doing a lot of podcasts, and one of the things that I am constantly hearing, usually from the podcast host, which are usually entrepreneurs or business people – they’ve felt like crap.  They went to the doctor, and the doctor would, like, run some labs, right, and then they would often respond with, “Your labs came back normal.”  I hear this with thyroid labs all the time.  So what I like to talk about is the difference between functional ranges and clinical ranges.  And if you take a look at – there’s two main companies in the US that run labs.  I think it’s LabQuest and CPL are the two main ones.  And let’s just take thyroid labs, like a thyroid panel, to begin with, so that we can talk about something very specific.  So what they do is they will – well, first of all, when’s the last time you’ve asked your doctor to run a lab when you’ve been feeling great?  Probably never.  It’s usually when you feel like garbage that you’re like, oh my God, there must be something wrong.  Doctor, please take some blood.  Tell me if you see anything.

Kristin:  Exactly.  That’s the only time I have.

Maja:  It’s the only time, right?  And so what CPL and Quest Diagnostics, what these companies do is they take a statistical average of all the people that, let’s say, had their TSH, thyroid stimulating thyroid, run.  And then they give you a clinical range of what is considered normal.  But what I like to highlight is that it’s just telling you what the average is of an increasingly unhealthy population, right?

Kristin:  Yes.

Maja:  So it’s telling you what’s common.  It’s not telling you what’s normal.  So if you take a look at the TSH clinical range, it can go anywhere between 0.5 and 6 or 7 or something crazy for some of these.  The lab ranges vary with the different lab companies.  Now, when I look at TSH, my functional range, which tells you what is optimal versus what is common, is 0.52.  So if your TSH came in at a 4 or a 5, that is well within a clinical range.  That being said, you probably have some symptoms of hypothyroid, right?  And so I always like to educate folks on, okay, if your doctor is saying that everything is normal, everything is in range, they are probably using clinical ranges that tell you what’s common, and I do not want to be compared to the average American in the United States.  We have, what, 80% obese and overweight rates.  I mean, type one diabetes, type two diabetes.  I do not want to be compared to what’s common in the US.  I want to be compared to what is optimal.  So when it comes to – that’s the first issue, right, with TSH.  Or I’m sorry, with running labs and the doctors being like, oh, it’s normal.  Well, the other things that they often do is just run TSH.  But I want to know what’s going on with your total T4.  What’s going on with your free T4.  What’s going on with total T3, free T3, T3 uptake, reverse T3, antibodies, TPG antibodies.  I want to know the ratio between total T3 and reverse T3.  I want to know the ratio between free T3 and reverse T3.  All of those, in addition to TSH, which is typically the only thing that a doctor will run.  They will not run a full thyroid panel.  And so that’s kind of the second issue that I find a lot, which is my clients say, okay, there’s no issue with thyroid, and I’m like, okay, well, what labs did they run?  Oh, just a TSH.  Okay, well, how about we run a full thyroid panel, and yeah, TSH was in range, but all of these other markers were not in range.  So if you don’t dig past the very surface, sometimes you don’t uncover some of the things that are an issue.

Kristin:  It’s all about being your own advocate and going deeper, yes.

Maja:  Yes, you have to be your own advocate.  I’m finding that right now.  Especially being pregnant, making some birthing decisions around what I’m doing, where I feel safe, and you do have to advocate for yourself.  And it’s a red flag if the doctor refuses to run the lab, and then red flag if you have symptoms and they tell you that everything is normal.  Because what they’re essentially saying is that you’re lying.

Kristin:  Yeah, and that’s hard.  So what’s your final tip?  You’ve given so many wonderful tips to our listeners, but if you were to give one final tip to our listeners who are either newly pregnant or in the postnatal recovery phase, what would that be?

Maja:  So I would say newly pregnant or postnatal recovery phase, I think that understanding what your mineral balance is like is mission critical.  I think that people do not talk about minerals as much as – ever.  I’ve never had a doctor be like, oh, I wonder what’s going on with your minerals.  And doing a hair tissue mineral analysis, I think, is one of the most powerful things that you can do.  This lab looks at mineral deposits in your hair.  And what I love about it is unlike blood work, which is a moment in time, this lab gives you a three-month snapshot into kind of what’s happening.  And so when it comes to minerals, there are primary, secondary, and tertiary minerals.  You want to kind of think about them like a triangle.  And at base are these primary minerals, so magnesium, calcium, sodium, and potassium.  If those four primary minerals are off, typically, there are a combination of other minerals that are off, because remember, they’re kind of at the base of the mineral triangle.  And minerals make up the earth, and they also make up our bodies.  And what a lot of people don’t understand is they help hundreds, if not thousands, of metabolic processes in the body.  So, for example, we talked about thyroid a little bit in our session today.  There are nine minerals that help in the conversion of T4, which is the inactive form of thyroid hormone, into the active form of thyroid hormone, which is T3.  So we can test T3 and T4 levels, but why am I not converting T4 to T3?  What most doctors and a lot of practitioners don’t understand is that there are minerals – there are cofactors that actually help in that conversion process.  And so I think minerals, understanding minerals, is the most important thing that you can do, and both prenatal and postpartum, it’s safe.  It’s calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium.  Those are all things that are in a typical prenatal, so it’s easy to kind of see what’s going on.  Magnesium is responsible for, like, RNA and DNA development.  I mean, muscle repair, some really, really important things.  And what I find in a lot of moms is that they have been – especially if you’ve been under stress for a really long time, you’re completely bottomed out.  You don’t have enough calcium, magnesium, sodium, or potassium.  And we don’t have enough time to get into why all of those are important, but they are very, very important.

Kristin:  Fascinating.  I could talk to you all day.  So much knowledge that you’re dropping.

Maja:  So I would say that is such a safe thing that you can do.  I’m not going to mess with hormones in pregnancy or really in the – most people shouldn’t mess with hormones ever, because hormones are rarely a problem.  They’re typically a symptom of the problem.  But there’s some things that we aren’t going to do when you’re in this delicate phase of growing a human or having just delivered a human.  But minerals is something that is so easy to do and easy – not easy to fix, but kind of easy to address.  That’s the one thing.  I’ve been on a big minerals kick where I just want to scream from the top of the mountains, like, check your minerals.

Kristin:  So how can our listeners find you?  I know you’re all over social media.  You’ve got a website.

Maja:  Yeah, I’m not a huge social media person, but you can find me on Facebook.  You can message me on Facebook.  I have a lot of content on my Facebook page around the labs and the work that I do.  But honestly, if you’re like, I want to talk to you, you can go to IOPnextlevel.com, and you can just fill out a quick little questionnaire and then just schedule a call with me.  I like to be really accessible.  I’m not going to pretend I’m inaccessible and you can’t talk to me.  Like, email me.  Maja@majamiller.com.  Go to iopnextlevel.com and fill out that quick little questionnaire and set up a call, or you can message me on Facebook.  Messenger pigeon, smoke signals, whatever.  I’m really easy to get a hold of if you want to reach out.  And I know how hopeless and overwhelming a lot of this can feel because I’ve been there myself, and I’ve felt the disappointment of losing a pregnancy and really not knowing where to start.  People teach what they need to learn, so I was my first client.

Kristin:  I love it.

Maja:  So yeah, those are all the ways that people can get a hold of me.

Kristin:  Well, I loved chatting with you today, Maja.  Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom with our listeners.  I hope you have a great day.

Maja:  Thank you so much.  Same to you.

Thanks for listening to Gold Coast Doulas.  Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.  If you like this podcast, please subscribe and give us a five-star review.  Thank you!  Remember, these moments are golden.

Seraphinite AcceleratorOptimized by Seraphinite Accelerator
Turns on site high speed to be attractive for people and search engines.