367: How To Beat AutoImmune

Palmer Kippola And Ashley James


  • What is MS and some most common auto-immune diseases
  • One of the key factors that helps to reverse her autoimmune disease was decreasing and managing stress.
  • Reasons why we need to on a daily basis have a routine that decreases our stress levels
  • For autoimmune, removing the gluten is paramount but my lifestyle
  • Find out how FIGHTS can affect your health (Food, Infections, Gut health, Hormone balance, Toxins, and Stress)


Feeling stressed lately? Find out how to build a foundation of health by addressing (FIGHTS) Food, Infections, Gut Health, Hormone Balance, Toxins and Stress in today’s podcast.

[00:00] Ashley James: Hello, True Health seeker and welcome to another exciting episode of Learn True Health podcast. You’re going to love today’s interview. This woman Palmer Kippola had MS. Multiple sclerosis for 26 years and she figured out how to no longer have MS. Have it completely reverse and heal her MS. In this today’s interview she shares her story. One of the key factors that helped her to reverse her autoimmune disease was decreasing and managing stress. We talked a bit about the physiological reasons why we need to, on a daily basis, have a routine that decreases our stress levels. Decreases the cortisol that puts us in the parasympathetic neuro-system response of rest and digest. It’s very important and we don’t do it enough especially if we have an autoimmune condition. I want to share with you something we really recommend. If you’re a type of person who’s battling a chronic illness and you want to heal, you’re going to love this suggestion. I’ve talked to in the past episodes about how much I loved Sunlighten Saunas I have one myself. It’s really aided me in my healing journey. I know that dozens of listeners have also purchased the sunlight and sauna and shared with me their personal story of how it’s been a great tool for them. This summer, Sunlighten Saunas giving my listeners a free chromotherapy device installed into their sauna and it aids with relaxation. Being in a sauna, number one is very relaxing. It does turn on the healing response, it turns off the stress response in the body. It incredibly healing and it decreases that stress from them. In addition, to just being in a sauna and all the benefits that they provide, this is a low heat sauna, they do have options for high heat but for those who are in chronic stress or having chronic autoimmune condition, you might not be comfortable of going in a sauna because you think it’s just going to be very hot. I start sweating in my sunlighten in about 119 degrees and the air is very comfortable. It’s almost like slightly above room temp. I feel really good. All my muscles totally relaxed and my body is expelling toxins through my sweat. I stay in there about between half and hours and 40 minutes. It’s very relaxing. When you have the chromotherapy in there, it adds both light and sound to decrease the stress. They are able to prove that it sends your bring into these relaxing waves. It takes you down out of that stress response and they’re showing that it is really helpful for those post-traumatic stress and with high chronic anxiety and those in chronic stress states which often people with autoimmune are. I highly recommend checking out sunlighten you can just give them a call. Google Sunlighten Saunas. Give them a call. Tell them I sent you Ashley James from the Learn True Health podcast. You get free shipping and you get this free chromotherapy added to your sauna. That’s worth several hundred dollars there. They do have a type of sauna that is called the solo system and it is portable. You can lay in it. Its ultra-low EMF and nontoxic. When you’re done you wipe it down and you put it in your closet. They do have that option for those who don’t want to have a big wooden sauna in their house or condo which I have and I love it. It only takes up a corner of the bedroom. It’s wonderful. I definitely recommend Sunlighten Sauna. It has been a great tool for me in my healing journey so many listeners have shared with me that they’re having wonderful results with it. As you listen to today’s episode and you start to understand why stress is a very important thing to learn how to manage on a daily basis, know that Sunlighten Sauna has a wonderful solution for you and as a learn true health listener, you definitely have a great discount by going with them. If you’re interested in learning more about sunlight and why I chose their company over dozens of other sauna companies out there, please go to learntruehealth.com and type in sauna or type in sunlighten in the search box, listen to my interviews. I did two interviews on the sunlighten sauna with the founder and one of the employees there who I absolutely adore. Both of them have wonderful stories and explain why sunlighten for me is the better option. I took about 2 years in researching all these different companies and contacting all these diff companies and talking to naturopaths and talking to other doctors until I finally decided that Sunlighten is my Sauna company. I’m really glad I did it. I’ve had only amazing experiences with their saunas and with their company and their customer service. I highly recommend them as a healing tool that help you both detoxify, sweat out those toxins and bring down the stress. Decrease that stress. Also, being in the Sunlighten Sauna help decrease inflammation as well. All wonderful healing tools that we need to help us on our healing journey. My goal for you is if you have autoimmune disease that you learn today how to beat it by listening to today’s interview and following all the wonderful advice that Palmer gives today. Excellent. Thank you so much for being a listener of the Learn True Health podcast. Please continue sharing these episodes with all your friends and family so we can help everyone that we love to learn true health. Enjoy today’s interview.

[06:18] Ashley James:  Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is episode 367. Today we are in for a big treat. We have with us, Palmer Kippola who is a functional medicine certified health coach. What has impressed me is much is that she overcame her 26-year battle with multiple sclerosis. She went on to design a formula to help everyone with autoimmune condition to no longer have it. She explains, she teaches us today. She’s going to explain why we can permanently and forever reverse autoimmune disease. If you go to a typical, traditional MD, they’re going to say that you need to be on drugs and manage it. That maybe they’ll even say that your autoimmune disease can go into remission but anytime it could sneak up on you and come back and flare up so they want to get you on drugs for the rest of your life. Not Palmer’s experience. Her experience is that you can epigenetically shift your body so that you can longer express, no longer have autoimmune and you’re 100% forever in remission. I’m so excited for my listeners to learn from you today, Palmer. Welcome to the show.

[07:41] Palmer Kippola: It’s an absolute honor to be with you, Ashley. Thank you so much for having me.

[07:45] Ashley James: Absolutely.  Well, this is going to be really exciting. Right off the bat, I want to say congratulations, your book is number one Amazon bestseller in 8 categories. You launched it a few months ago and it is just selling like hotcakes. Congratulations.

[08:03] Palmer Kippola: Thank you so much. Thank you, thank you.

[08:04] Ashley James: Absolutely. Now, your book is called Beat Autoimmune: The six keys to reverse your condition and reclaim your health and it has a foreword with Mark Hyman. I’ve had him on the show, I absolutely love him. What does it feel to have an Amazon best-selling book?

[08:22] Palmer Kippola: It’s a little surreal. I have to tell you. It just had exceeded my expectation but what it says to me, is that people are seeking real solutions and that is so exciting to me. People actually know it’s possible or believes that it’s possible to completely heal. They are looking for these answers.

[08:44] Ashley James: It’s number 1 in 8 categories including immunology, alternative med, lupus, MS, chronic pain. You cover a lot of really great content in your book and of course, you’re here today to teach us some of that content. Before we get into that though, I really want to hear your story. Can you take us back? What happened in your life that led up to you having MS for 26 years and ultimately discovering how to no longer have an autoimmune condition?

[09:15] Palmer Kippola:  Yes. This a story that starts when I’m 19 years old so I need to take you back just a few years. I was a happy, healthy, well-adjusted 19-year-old young woman. I was home for the summer after my freshman year of college. I’m just working a summer job, doing my thing. One morning I woke you and the soles of my feet were just tingling. That feeling that you get when you’ve sat on a limb for too long and when the blood flows back it’s all tingling. I thought, “You just shake your legs and the blood’s going to flow back. Only this particular morning, the blood didn’t flow back even when I was jumping up and down. I thought, “Get up, this is just going to go away.” Off I go to work but the tingling just crept up my legs like a vine. By the time the tingling reached my knees, I knew something was really wrong. So I called my parents and they called the family doctor who said, “Get her over to the neurologist at UCLA.” I don’t know how we managed it but we got it that the afternoon, by the time we sat in the neurologists’ office, the tingling was all the way up to my tummy. The neurologist had me do this very cursory exam, heel-toe across the room. She tested my reflexes, the knees, touch your fingers to your nose with your eyes closed. I think it was a 5 or 6 minutes visit and she then pronounced, “I am 99% certain that you have MS. Multiple sclerosis. And if I’m right, there’s nothing you can do, except go home and wait it out.” We had never heard of MS. This was before the internet. There was no Dr. Terry Walls. We just left her office with very little information. Very little hope and went home and by the time we got home that evening, the tingling was all the way up into the collarbone. By the time we got into bed, my mom crawled in with me and she was holding me and crying and I was crying because by that time I couldn’t feel her holding me Ashley, my whole entire body had gone completely numb and would stay numb from the neck down for a full 6 weeks.

[11:30] Ashley James: Oh my gosh, that must’ve been so scary.

[11:35] Palmer Kippola: It was absolutely terrifying. We just didn’t know what to expect. We couldn’t just go and check out doctor google. Really, I was relegated to the couch for those 6 weeks. We didn’t know how long it’s going to last. I’m just so grateful that I was at home at that time with my parents and they were tremendous supporters. My mom was quick to empathize, hug me and start planning what we could for we don’t know what. My life permitted being in a wheelchair and going to school locally. My dad was also very quick to motivate me and my can-do spirit. He would often say, “Honey, you can beat this thing.” Just I understand him he was a former fighter pilot so he had a very strong can-do spirit and he always fired mine up. I had the empathy, I had the motivation and a lot of time to just contemplate and be on the couch. I will say that during those 6 weeks, I am so grateful that friends came by and they weren’t too scared off by this mysterious disease. One friend came, a family friend who is into things metaphysical, in retrospect I can see that this was a gift, but at that time I was very offended. She asked me “Palmer, why do you think you got the MS?” “What? You think I caused this? What do you mean why do I think I got this?” I was offended. I didn’t have much to do or very far to go. I was like a dog with a bone with that question and I just lay on the couch thinking about this. “Why do I think I got – Did I bring this on?” I will share with you what I came up with this, my intimal hypothesis for why but I need to take you a little bit farther back in time because I had been adopted as a baby I was 3days old, my parents' very loving parents. My dad who I mentioned who was also a fighter pilot had very strong opinions about things and very definitive views on how things should be. He didn’t liked that my mom was overweight and she really struggled with that. He would yell quite a bit. My earliest memory about age 3 or age 4 is, my dad is yelling at my mom who had shut her bedroom door, she probably crying behind her door. I am standing up to my dad with my little dukes up saying, “You yell at my mom and call her names, I’ll suck your lights out.” Whatever words to that affect. In lying on the couch there at age 19 completely numb, it occurred to me in a flash of insight that the reason for MS was chronic stress. I had become a child warrior. The hyper-vigilant, always scanning the environment for safety or danger and catching knives under the air vigilance, right? That is what occurred to me and I didn’t know anything about the immune system. I had no basis for any kind of knowledge about this but I envisioned my immune system as having become hyper-vigilant too that if there wasn’t a real battle going on, like a virus or some sort of bacterial threat that it could create friendly fire. It would turn against my own body. Much of this still rings true for me today that chronic stress is the root of the MS even though I know there’s a lot more to this story.

[15:25] Ashley James: I love it that you have that as you’re lying on the couch, you have this insight into that how the stress was affecting your immune system and how your immune system was responding. While you’re lying on the couch, did you start to do things to try to calm down or calm down your immune system? What did you do with that information once you had it?

[15:49] Palmer Kippola: Yes. I did. The first thing we did, another family friend brought a book, Norman Cousin’s Anatomy of an Illness and in it, Dr. Cousin’s recounts his own experience healing from some mysterious autoimmune condition with high doses of laughter and vitamin C. I didn’t know anything about nutrition but the laughter made perfect sense so every night my family and I made it our mission to watch funny things on TV. That was definitely a good distraction at the very least it gave me an oasis of calm from the fear. That was one thing and I did start doing visualizations. If you think about Pacman, it was that rudimentary when I was envisioning my immune system like shooting laser beams at these little critters that were in my body that shouldn’t be there. Guided imagery and laughter were two of the first things that I used but it took a couple of years for me to really put this into practice if you will. I am very fortunate that at the end of 6 weeks the numbness were treated enough for me to go back to college. I went back for my sophomore year. I intuited since chronic stress was at the root of the MS then I needed to learn how to relax. That drove me for the next 26 years. That I needed to put relaxation practices in place to calm that hypervigilance. The first thing I started doing is yoga. I noticed that when I did the practice, did the deep breathing and actually did the poses, I noticed a reduction in symptoms. Conversely, when I was really stressed like there were exams at school, conflict at home or later in the workforce, when I might have been overwhelmed with work-related stuff, I noticed flare-ups of the MS. That was really, really easy for me to see the cause and effect of stress equals symptoms, relaxations equals no symptoms. No, not at all but a reduction in symptoms, I should say. The next thing I started doing in the early 90's is to meditate. I noticed once again if I did it, things would calm down and if I didn’t, I would experience more symptoms. But still the MS still persisted, it didn’t go away just because I started to relax more it was always there to some varying degree.


[18:30] Ashley James: How many flare-ups would you have? Would it be just little symptoms like if you were under stress you’d wake up with tinging numbness or pain? Would you have major flare-ups where you would be in a wheelchair?

[18:45] Palmer Kippola: Fortunately, I’ve never made into to a wheelchair. I don’t know how to say that. I never ended up in a wheelchair, I did have an experience once probably the most dreadful was aside from that 6 weeks of total body numbness was a flare-up of optic neuritis. This is a striking before and after. I was working for AT&T network systems in New Jersey. A stressful marketing job, I went on vacation to a really relaxing Caribbean island fantastic time and I came back, and the moment I set foot in the corporate building under those florescent lights, I was struck blind in one eye and had this searing pain that would last about two weeks. That would take two visits to an emergency room for the pain and them not figuring out what it was and finally a trip down to John Hopkins in Baltimore where there’s an MS specialty to be diagnosed with optic neuritis which is, in fact, a hallmark symptom of MS. For the most part, your question about feeling symptoms, there was tightness like rubber bands around my torso, there was numbness and tingling. There was no rhyme and reason to where the symptom would show up and there was also this general profound fatigue that I felt.

[20:13] Ashley James: The catch22, when you have these symptoms, it causes more stress. It’s just feedback loop because you don’t know if it’s going to get worse, you don’t know when it’s going to get better. You’re feeling it in your body so it’s real. You’re constantly worrying about which is creating more stress, which is creating more symptoms, the symptoms creating more stress and worry which is creating more symptoms and on and on, how do you take a breath and do a break state?

[20:47] Palmer Kippola: That is a great question. It think it’s so important to understand that the stress itself, create such a downward spiral to a vicious cycle of stress and symptom, stress and more stress and insomnia and you can’t sleep and you’re stressed about that. I think inherent in that question too, I think you mentioned taking a deep breath. Anything that you can do to cut that cycle and you’ve practiced, I understand that you do NLP, one thing that I have found super helpful is just to do the deep breathing. Taking maybe a total of 6 rounds of 5 breaths in really slowly deep belly breathing is some way to just get back centered in the body and not to let your mind spiral out of control because there’s no sense creating more stress. There’s what is and then there’s the story that you start telling about what is. Just to stay present with what is and breathe into it and get centered and back in the body. Whatever you can do to center yourself has been in my experience the most helpful.

[21:59] Ashley James: You say that it reminds me of landmark out. Did you do any landmark or did you do that somewhere else?

[21:05] Palmer Kippola: I don’t know if I learned it from landmark but you’ve caught me. Yes, I’ve done landmark through their advanced program. I guess, SELP which was very helpful. I can’t remember what it stands for but maybe you do.

[22:18] Ashley James: Self-Expression and leadership program.

[22:21] Palmer Kippola: There you go.

[22:22] Ashley James: Yes, I did landmark when I was a teenager. Then after my mom died, I ended up taking a lot of their advanced courses and then they hired me and I was on staff in Toronto at the Toronto center. I love Landmark but they got a little miffy when I told them I wanted to study NLP because they just wanted everyone to do Landmark and not look at where landmark got their original stuff from. They copied NLP and so I went basically to the source. Coming back to what you said about story. This is really important. I was just talking a friend of the wall and was very stressed out about something. She was exacerbating her symptoms so much so that she was unable to walk. She was really exacerbating her stress. It’s hard to tell someone, “You’re causing this.” She has health issues but stress exacerbates the health issues and the only time she has flare-ups is when she’s’ stressed. It’s hard to say, “By the way, you have control over this” because people feel like, ”Are you telling me that I’m doing this on myself and it’s all on my head?” it’s not. It’s not saying that at all. It’s very real and that emotional, mental and physical stress both from internal emotional and mental and external stressors, like what we eat and our environment are – if you are in an area where there’s high pollution in the air and you have asthma that’s an external stress on your body but if you are not sleeping at night then you’re worrying a lot. That’s exactly same as breathing in pollution for someone who has asthma. It’s just a different kind of stress but it’s going to do the same thing to the body. It takes the body out of the healing mode and into the fight or flight mode. If we are in fight or flight we’re not healing. Whether we’re healing or we’re fighting to survive in the moment. Like you said, taking those deep breaths is going to give us that break state where we can bring our body back into healing mode and calm it down. When we’re worried about something we’re throwing fuel in the fire and I love that you brought up the idea of the story because that’s exactly what I had to tell my friend which really helped her. She was having symptoms in her body. She has some emotional stressors going on with her life with her family. Her symptoms came up and then she started worrying about the symptoms “Oh my gosh, does this mean I’m going to have to go to the ER? What’s going to happen to me? Am I going to be able to walk? Do I need to go get my walker? I don’t have anyone to take care of me.” So she starts making a story about the feeling. All she had was a sensation in her body but her mind wanted to predict the future so she could be prepared but the mind goes to worst-case scenario, the doomsday. Her mind started thinking about all the worst things that could possibly happen be she’s feeling the sensation in her body. Then that exacerbated her worry and her stress which then created more symptoms and that was the feedback loop. She started feeling more symptom then she started worrying about them thinking, “This means that I’m going to be this, that I’m going to be that. “ I had to say lest focus on what’s so right now because all the this-means that the brain does, all the story that the brain creates is not necessarily true. It’s just trying to predict the future based on the past but were not living our past right now. We need to do a break state. Catch yourself when you’re in story. Story meaning when you’re trying to predict this negative future based on what you’re currently feeling in your body. You felt the searing pain in your head and you couldn’t see at one eye your brain probably went, “Oh my god, I’m going to blind for the rest of my life.” That’s the story that you probably created because I would. I would, possibly in that moment. And then that feeds into creating more and more stress. Like you said, we have to come back to what’s so. What’s so in the moment is I’m having these feelings and that’s it. That’s the only things that so. What can I do right now to help me to trigger the healing mode and to de-escalate the stress mode. I love that you do the deep breathings which immediately helps. Then to manage stress in a daily basis, you’re doing yoga and meditation. Obviously, you’ve discovered more things to help because this was just helping to manage it but it didn’t helped it to completely go away. So after you discovered that the optical nerve,

[27:29] Palmer Kippola: Optic neuritis.

[27:30] Ashley James: Yes, the optic neuritis was a common symptom of MS then what happened?

[27:37] Palmer Kippola: I just kept on this path of stress reduction because I thought that that was going to be my path to freedom. In fact, it was big part of it but in addition to that, I did a bunch of other experiments over the 26 years. I intuited that food had to do something with the MS. I didn’t know what and at that time there was very little information available and I came across the swank diet book that purported that a low-fat vegetarian diet was in fact the best for MS. That was the next experiment I did. For me, it didn’t work. I didn’t notice a reduction in symptoms and in fact, when I added more healthy whole grains into my diet I noticed that I started having more tummy trouble and no reduction in MS symptoms. Every time I ate, I would notice some gurgling not like IBS symptoms that were debilitating but this kind of gurgling sensation that you can just feel something going on that doesn’t feel great but I thought it was normal. I thought everybody felt this way after eating. I didn’t think anything of it. I just kept eating the whole grains at every meal. I grew up eating great big bowls of cereal, I had my peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on whole wheat bread, and for dinner there’s was either pasta or sometimes pizza or beer. Every time I ate, I felt that grumbling. That was my first experience with food and I must say that all different types of vegetarian is for me, didn’t seem to make anything better. In fact, I discovered that I had more tummy issues as a result of adding more grains to my diet.

[29:33] Ashley James: Right. Not many people get that there’s a connection between gut health and other systems of the body. Did you feel that disrupting your gut health with grains played a role in affecting your inflammation, affecting the MS, the autoimmune, did you take that correlation?

[29:58] Palmer Kippola: I didn’t make any correlation whatsoever. Again, I thought this was normal and it just seemed like a failed experiment to me at that time. It wasn’t until 2010 when I actually discovered my lynchpin trigger which I will talk more about. I just wanted to add one more failed experiment to this equation before telling you what my eureka experiment was. The third experiment I tried was medication, which for me was not beneficial. I, in fact, developed more people know of them as side effect, they’re not very side effects they’re very direct effects that medication causes but I think the drug companies want us to believe that these are just little tiny side effects. I actually developed heart attack symptoms about 15 minutes after injecting myself one night with this medication purported to help the MS. That was a terrifying experience. They just assured me that this was a normal known side effect of the mediation. I developed a wound that wouldn’t heal for 6 months. I developed lipoatrophy, which is a disappearance of fat where you inject yourself in all the fatty places, they don’t talk about a that. If the medication worked, you overlooked those. It’s a question of balance. Is it doing more good than harm? For me, it ended up more harm than good. I was already managing well with the stress reduction. I was modeling along with the diets trying to figure it out on my own again, not having the internet, it wasn’t until 2010 that I decided to finally I need to go see a nutritionist. I found a functional medicine nutritionist who lived pretty close to me. She ran a bunch of tests and it turned out that I have non-celiac gluten sensitivity. In other words, I didn’t have celiac disease but I was very sensitive to gluten. One of the proteins in grains notably wheat. This functional medicine nutritionist educated me on what gluten is doing to my body. How that was what was causing this gut symptoms. Remember I shared that I was eating gluten at every meal for as long as I could chew food. I had no idea what was doing to my body. She educated me on how it was inflaming the lining my gut creating leaky gut and she led to through gut healing protocol that included a 30-day elimination diet so that’s what I did in October of 2010. I remember the date because this was really notable for me. Within a week of removing gluten, I stopped having tummy trouble after eating. Within one month of removing the gluten, I stopped having any and all symptoms ever again. Like end of story. I really quick to footnote Ashley that your experience might be different. Everybody has a different reaction. I’m not suggesting that reversing MS is as simple as removing gluten and you’re done because our root causes are different and we’ll go into the FIGHTS categories that I’ve came up with to look at all the things that need to be looked at. Gluten happens to be the number one biggest baddy when it comes to food and autoimmune conditions. I just wanted to get that said and I would also like to add that I was so excited about this fact that by January of 2011, I thought I’ve got to go tell my neurologist because over 26 years I’ve seen 6 neurologists, this 26-year period where I’ve lived in different places, 6 neurologists who all had done MRIs and office visits and everything who have said, yes this is MS. This one that I was seeing in Palo Alto, I told him this is what I did. I removed the gluten and I don’t have MS anymore. I can’t feel it. Prior to that, I felt like I was plugged into an electric socket 24/7. I could feel this humming in the background all the time. I knew it was always there. When I went into his office really excited he gave me one of this pat me in the head condescending remarks and said, “Palmer, gluten sensitivity is a fad, your MS must’ve been benign after all.” There’s no acknowledgment of anything that was done. Fast forward now to last year when I went back to the same neurologist. To close the story, 8 years later, I thought it would be a good time to go back and get a follow-up MRI with him just to check-in. He wondered what I was doing back and I said, “I was actually really curious what his thinking was on MS and autoimmune conditions and the first thing he said to me was, “Palmer, we now know that gluten sensitivity is real. I bet more than a third of my MS patients are sensitive to gluten.” There was a recognition and acknowledgment that about 10 years later, he had come to another understanding maybe he had read the science for himself. He had me do the follow-up MRI and I came by sat side by side with him and we looked to the results the before and after. He showed me that pattern of MS and how there was a dozen finger pattern that was very much consistent with MS patients lesions in their brain look like and how my brain showed that the lesions had disappeared or were fading. He just looked at me and said, “This could’ve been a better story.” Ashley, I tried to partner with him saying, “You know, I’m a functional certified health coach.” and he said, “I can’t give you my patient list but maybe I can send people to you. I said, “Wouldn’t it be great just to have 2 or 3 clients that we work on together like a one plus one equals three kind of thing?” I pursued that a couple of times and I never heard back from him again.

[36:34] Ashley James: That is so frustrating. Why are they so threatened with getting people off of medication and a hundred percent healed especially when it comes to partnering with holistic health practitioners. Why? Why can’t they drop the ego? Also the ego, this just drives me crazy. MDs and this is part of their training, I know as individuals, I know there’s probably MDs listening right now because they write to me. I’m not bashing individual MDs, I’m saying that their training, it’s like when you get a soldier to go into the military, they put them through hell week or whatever, or hell month whatever their training is in order to mold them, in order to shape them, if you look at how they develop the training their MDs, it is to mold them into a certain kind of thinking. They do 24-hour shifts, this kind of things where it really does shift how you act and how you think. Their entire education, they spent eight or 9 years being molded to believe that they have been taught everything. That new information is really hard to come by because they’ve been taught everything. Their immediate reaction when they hear something like, “Oh, I cut out food and my diagnosis is going away or has gone away” is to scoff at it. It’s to put it down without looking for information to prove or disapprove. They just tell the patient that’s incorrect. That’s their ego. That’s their huberous. Instead as a scientist, they would say, “Interesting hypothesis. I do not know.” Most MDs can’t say “I do not know. Let’s go look into this together. I’m going to put my bias. My personal human ego and bias aside and lets go look into this together and see if there’s other studies, see if there’s validity to your claims.“ No. Most MD’s do not do that. If you find a doctor that says, “I don’t know the answer but let’s find them together” that is a potential keeper. It just frustrates me. Especially, women, I have heard story upon story of women who have not been listened to by their doctor. It’s like they’re brushed off “That’s just hysteria. That’s just your hormones. That’s normal. Whatever your symptoms are that’s just normal,” and they’re not listened to. There’s so many cases of people coming to their doctor and they feel like something’s wrong. It turns out, years later, they develop cancer and it’s like they knew something was wrong but because the doctor just writes it off and sends them home. They’re basing things on their ego and not as a scientist. Let’s see if we can prove or disapprove this hypothesis. It’s frustrating to me because people go to their doctor because we put them on a pedestal and we expect answers and then if they don’t know the answer that’s treating to their ego so then they just makeup one instead of actually looking into the science. That puts the patient down and disempowers them. We want to empower people to advocate for themselves and thank god, there’s the internet so we can – and thank god there’s podcast like this and interviews like this so we can go and empower ourselves and seek information. We have to remember when we bring this information to our doctor, they’re not putting their ego aside. We have to get whatever they say if they’re not willing to go and look into the research then don’t give up, go to the next doctor and the next doctor and find one that’ll partner with you. Be okay with you advocating for yourself. I love seeing naturopaths. Many naturopaths I’ve seen are excited when I bring research from the internet saying, “What about his, what about that? can we look at this can we look at that and they’re excited to not know all the answers and to learn with me because they’re better at reading the science than I am. So if I can bring them something to look at and to research and look at all the studies then great, they’re going to do that for me I’m just going to point them in the direction that I want them to go to help me because I’m advocating for myself getting my doctor to look into what I want. I love that you noticed and you listened to your body those 26 years and you kept experimenting. Obviously, you never gave up because that’s your quality of life. You advocated for yourself. Just because your doctor said, “This is who we eat. This isn’t real.” you did not go, “Oh, I’ll just go start eating cheerios again because my doctor says that this is who we eat.” You know, you still listen to yourself. People I know who their doctors have talked them out of a healthier lifestyle because the doctor just didn’t believe in it. That is so sad that sometimes people put the opinions that their doctors give them as higher than their own ability to listen to their body.

[42:26] Palmer Kippola: So beautifully said, Ashley. I want to thank you for saying all that. I am with you. This is not us coming down on doctors but it feels like when there’s not a curiosity that’s demonstrated even in the face of evidence that’s everywhere and will get into this now with epigenetics and now there’s actually an autoimmune equation, we have the knowledge but not being curious, it’s a little bit baffling but it really speaks to the need that we all have to become the CEOs or the captain of our own ships, speak of our own health. We really must do that and I know that that’s daunting because that seems that the doctors supposed to be the one who educates who know all of this. Sadly, my understanding is that in medical practice often follows about 17 years behind science and that’s just because the medical schools can’t keep up with what’s coming. The textbooks are out of date, they are really, really busy people and of course, insurances involved, that further limits what they can actually talk with patients about and get paid for. The bottom line is we need this root-cause revolution. We have the information today to show us that it’s not just about putting this autoimmune conditions into remission and I love how you said we’d be getting like its lurking there in the background waiting to pounce forward. It’s not that way with cancer either. We’ve read Kelly Turner’s radical remission for the stories of people who’ve overcome cancer. There are things that people put into practice that actually matter greatly in terms of changing your health outcomes. I just wanted to say thank you for really advocating on behalf of each of us becoming the CEO of our own health and well-being. Feeling the confidence to step up and say, “You know that just doesn’t seem right to me” because food apathy said food is medicine 25 hundred years ago and we know this to be true just because the doctor didn’t have nutrition training doesn’t mean that it’s not true. Anyway, I do want to say that western medicine is fantastic for acute illnesses. For broken bones, for surgeries and these acute conditions but this gray area mysterious diseases that don’t have a clear beginning and end are really not – that’s not the purview of medical doctors, they didn’t get trained in this stuff. So many systems are interconnected. For the most part, doctors get trained in their xylode approach. Works like I said for those acute illnesses and that’s when you want to see a doctor if I want a heart attack I want to got to the hospital but if I have MS, maybe not the best place. They don’t have the right toolkit.

[45:47] Ashley James: They’re not looking to heal the root cause. They’re looking to manage symptoms, they’re really good at managing symptoms. It’s up to us to heal the root cause because it keeps coming back to, it’s our lifestyle that is the cause of this. Lifestyle being the nutrition, the food we eat and don’t eat the amount of stress we have, how we move our body, all of that. Our environment, all of that triggers the genes to express in a certain way. Let’s jump back to your story so we can discover what you did then. After you leave your doctor 8-10 years ago, you left your doctor’s office and you knew that cutting out grains, was it all grains or just gluten grains?

[46:43] Palmer Kippola: Well, I eventually cut all grains. I started just with gluten but I found that for me I have naturally high blood sugar. For me to manage the blood sugar, just not having grains at all or starchy carbs was a better way to go. I’ll just say for autoimmune, removing the gluten is paramount but my lifestyle, it’s better for me to avoid all grains.

[47:11] Ashley James: Got it. After you left the doctor’s office and he have purported going gluten-free, you knew in your gut you’re on to something, then what? Where’d you go from there?

[47:24] Palmer Kippola: I just have this cognitive dissonance. The feeling that you have when you know something in your bones and yet I have been old for 26 years by this 6 neurologists there’s nothing I could do. It just didn’t compute. Right? How in the world was it possible that a woman like me, I was in sales and marketing for high tech companies, I was not in the health industry, but I decided I needed to learn for myself. What had actually happened. I dove into the research, you probably know PubMed. It is probably the largest database of biomedical research, I think owned by the NIH it’s just endless. I started doing research upon research and looking for studies on the cause of autoimmune conditions and I found just an incredible amount of evidence that talked about things like low vitamin D is associated with autoimmune conditions. Low DHEA which is another hormone associated with autoimmune, high mercury associated with all – I’m thinking oh my goodness, there are so many things that we can control. These environmental factors seem to be associated with developing autoimmune conditions, it wasn’t just MS. I thought MS was going to be some different animal or some different beast but it turns out that any of the 150 or more autoimmune conditions all have similar root causes. I just started putting the puzzle pieces together. I started writing down these categories and it turned out it spelled the word. Fights. Which stands for Food, Infections, Gut health, Hormone balance, Toxins, and Stress. I just was super excited that now, we had information that wanted to share with the world. I knew that people needed to know about this. It wasn’t okay with me that a doctor didn’t know more about this and I felt like, I really wanted to help people so I finally decided that I needed to share this with the world in a form of a book and not just keep this for myself because honestly, I felt like it should have been front-page news and it wasn’t.

[49:47] Ashley James: Each time you came across a study like the high mercury, did you look into what you can do to detox mercury as you go through each one, “Oh vitamin D. I should get my vitamin D checked, oh vitamin C.” each time you came across one did you address it in your health?

[50:07] Palmer Kippola: Yes. Well, first thing I did is I wrote it down and I had what I called my root cause reversal checklist. I just wrote everything down. I saw that poor sleep, for example, only getting 6 hours a night was enough to turn on inflammatory genes and getting restored of sleep, on the other hand, turned on the nourishing genes and dim down those inflammatory ones. I learned that dairy can be very inflammatory for people with autoimmune conditions. So I did. It was self-experimentation first but writing them all down on this sheet of paper so that I could see the full array of different root causes and there were many of them which I ended up putting in categories so, yes.

[50:53] Ashley James: I am fascinated. 6 hours or less of sleep epigenetically turns on the expression of inflammatory genes?

[51:02] Palmer Kippola: Yes.

[51:05] Ashley James: Think about all the people. Does that include disrupted sleep?

[51:09] Palmer Kippola: The study says even a few hours of lost sleep can lead to turning on inflammatory genes

[51:15] Ashley James: That’s huge

[51:16] Palmer Kippola: Yes, it is huge. I’d like to if this is an okay place to talk about it, introduce the topic of the toxin bucket. I know you’ve talked with your audience about this before but I think this is really an appropriate place to include it because we each carry inside us this metaphor of a toxin bucket into which all of these lifestyle factors go. Those things that I was researching the mercury, “I had a mouthful of mercury fillings, I had an addiction to sugar growing up. I not only had my cheerios, I put tablespoon upon tablespoon of sugar and added my non-fat milk to it. So I ladling in dairy, I’ve got the gluten, I’ve got the chronic stress from childhood, I’ve got a mouthful of mercury filings.” All of those things, individually your body deals with. We have a certain amount of resilience as a child or teenager as an example. Theoretically, our bucket can hold a certain amount of toxins and the bottom of the bucket should have holes metaphorically where those toxins get excreted. Through our skin, our colon, through our kidneys, etc. we want to make sure that the detox organs are functioning perfectly. Things are flowing but it turns out, that in my case, I was adding more things to my toxin bucket than I was excreting. It just gets to the point where once things starts spilling over, the whole system just goes tilt. This is when the leaky gut develops, this is when we start to experience symptoms because leaky gut is the gateway to autoimmune conditions. I finally figured out in doing all these research that all of those elements that I was studying, the poor sleep, minimal exercise or minimal movement, eating a sad diet, even infections like Candida and chronic Lyme disease, all of those elements are adding to the toxin bucket and it’s our job if we want to stay healthy or get well. To examine those things that we’re putting into the bucket or might be to our knowledge and to do something about it. We can start by emptying the toxin bucket and I think that’s a lifetime’s work because we want to practice daily detoxification and not just do a few quick cleanses a few times a year. That was what I decided. I had my toxin bucket head overflowed and that is how the MS developed and so to heal from the MS and any other autoimmune condition, we need to examine what our own buckets are filled with and see if we can remove those element so that we can get back to balance.

[54:12] Ashley James: To go to your acronym, food, infections, gut health. What were the other?

[54:21] Palmer Kippola: Hormone balance, toxins, and stress. Those were the big categories.

[54:27] Ashley James: Yes, it makes a lot of sense. You started discovering as you went through your research that certain nutrient deficiencies were associated with autoimmune and then toxins, the toxic overload like mercury was associated with autoimmune. Where do infections come into play?

[54:49] Palmer Kippola: Infections are a very insidious contributor to autoimmune conditions. They are there often lurking in the background. Like Epstein-Barr for example is a herpes virus. It may be you had childhood mono and it’s not until you’re hit with a major stressor maybe later in life. Maybe a loved one dies or maybe you lose a job or something happens that knocks you off balance. That hidden or latent infection gets reactivated and that can become a major contributor. It’s usually some combination of factors and with infections, it’s both a cause and hitchhiker I’ll call it because sometimes it’s the chronic Lyme disease that is the root cause of an autoimmune condition or Epstein-Barr. Sometimes when your immune system has taken a hit and it’s dealing with an autoimmune condition, your defenses are down and it’s more likely that people with autoimmune conditions will pick up an infection because people with autoimmune conditions typically are hypometabolic meaning their metabolism are low and slow. There’s usually low thyroid involved and when we’re at a hypometabolic state, we are our environment our milieu is more attracted to infections, that’s another conundrum with infections and autoimmune conditions. They seem to go hand in hand.

[56:31] Ashley James: I’m thinking, Lyme disease often has co-infections and the people I’ve interviewed on the show about Lyme all say, these experts help people reverse Lyme disease, they themselves have had them and helped people reverse it and they say that it’s the environment of the body that became optimal because like an entire family could be exposed to ticks that have Lyme but only one person in the family develops chronic Lyme disease and everyone else just gets over it. It’s not like a hundred percent of the time people develop Lyme. It’s at the environment of the body was perfect meaning their toxin bucket was full and their immune system was somehow compromised and the body became this perfect host for the chronic Lyme disease and all this co-infections. So all the experts on the show keep saying, it’s the environment of the body that invites these infections to live in us. When I say infections, it can be parasites, it can be bacteria or viruses. All of them. Right?

[57:47] Palmer Kippola: Right. Absolutely.

[57:48] Ashley James: You’re looking to help the body become an environment that’s inhospitable to these infections.

[57:59] Palmer Kippola: Well said. Absolutely. It’s all about the terrain. What I have found is that we actually need a two-prong strategy to address these infections. It’s not just about kill, kill, kill. The Lyme co-infections as an example, it’s not just a killing strategy. Like with chemotherapy for example, if you have cancer and you get chemo, it might kill the cancer cells but if you don’t do anything to address the root cause of why you got cancer in the first place, the cancer often returns with a vengeance. It’s a similar kind of story here. The two-prong strategy that I talk about is first, we’ve got to unburden our immune systems. When you’re dealing with any kind of autoimmune condition, MS is not a brain problem. Hashimoto’s, thyroid is not a thyroid disease. Rheumatoid arthritis is not a problem with your joints. It actually may manifest that way but these are all immune system problems. When you help unburden your immune system, you’re actually helping resolve the autoimmune condition and you’re doing the best you can do and help clear infections. We want to remove all sources of inflammation. That would include those inflammatory foods that we talked about, the gluten the dairy the sugar and for some people they have challenges with things like eggs, soy, corn, some with nuts and so forth. You need to discover for you what your sources of inflammatory foods are because that’s the best place to start when we remove the sources of inflammation when it comes to infections. They love sugar. Infections like candida as an example thrive on sugars so when you take away their preferred fuel, their sugar you’re creating an environment that’s inhospitable to those infections. That’s why that’s a very, very good way to start it’s addressing the sources of inflammation that you’re putting into your system and then the second piece which is very much synergistic with the first is to raise your metabolism and the way we can do this is to help ourselves. I have found three things that work really well, one is to go low carb because carbohydrates convert to sugar in our body, high glycemic ones. We want to do what we can to minimize the high glycemic foods, and starches and processed foods and I also find that intermittent fasting is an excellent strategy to remove those sources of even digesting is metabolically really high energy for the body. When we can give ourselves a break or digestion a break, we can actually focus our energies on healing as an example. Finally, cold showers. At least the last 30 seconds or a minute of a shower can be another great way to raise your metabolism. These are all strategies to help you become an inhospitable place for infections.

[01:01:24] Ashley James: I love it. I love it. I love this approach because you’re looking at correcting the train of the body and looking at it from all the different angles. How long have you been teaching the FIGHTS method to help people no longer have autoimmune condition?

[01:01:44] Palmer: Kippola I have been coaching people for the last couple of years. I got my certification to be functional medicine certified health coach. It’s interesting Ashley because the first book that I set out to write was a book of healing stories. I wanted to not just share my own story of healing from MS, I wanted to make it an exponential good news story to share other people’s stories and I have an agent and she tried to shop that around, it’s disappointing to me that I learned that, and the quotes where “healing stories don’t sell.” I couldn’t believe it. I know. I find healing stories very powerful and I share it on my website. But in fact, the publishers weren’t interested in that, instead of having 12 doctor’s perspectives on healing, they wanted my perspective. That’s when I thought I actually need to package this up in a way that is digestible, pun intended so that people can really get their arms around what they need do to. That’s when I really started coming out with more information on FIGHTS as a protocol and not just throwing things against the wall to see what would stick. I actually now have a framework for healing.

[01:03:09] Ashley James: So you have been working for the last few years and getting results, can you share what kind of results? Can you share some of those stories of success?

[01:03:19] Palmer Kippola: Absolutely. Here’s an example, one of my clients is a – she’s probably 50 years old now. She has a couple of kids. She’s a single mom. She works and have had IBS symptoms so bad that she couldn’t leave the house. She used to be an athlete. She used to run and participate in races. When she developed these IBS symptoms, she was terrified as you can imagine to leave the house to go for a run and not knowing whether there’s going to be toilet. She also had a long commute to work and that made it nearly debilitating for her. She also had celiac disease and she had Hashimoto's, thyroiditis. I have given a talk at the end of 2016 for an organization called Silicon Valley health institute. SVHI. They recorded a 30-minute video of me sharing my MS healing journey and what I’ve learned to help others. This woman saw my video and she was across the country so it was great that we have the internet now to share this healing stories. She reached out and she became a client. At that time, she was also losing her hair and had real hormonal imbalance and dysfunction with very, very heavy menstrual cycles. That was what we started with. We talked about my methodology and she was just eager and ready to do what she could to change her lifestyle. We came to find that she was eating a lot of these foods that were actually interfering with her immune system including gluten, corn, tomatoes, dairy, all of which she was reacting to but that she craved. As difficult as it is to consider doing an elimination diet and giving up your favorite foods, I told her that “Look, it’s only 30 days. For me, it’s the most empowering experiment that I ever did. We’ll go through this together.” Sure enough, she did. She removed all of those foods including eggs and coffee and so forth. At the end of the 30 days, she felt fantastic. Then she tried to add some of those foods back in, she just found immediately that when she added back in the tomatoes, she loved her chips and salsa, that is just an absolute inflammation bomb, she had a very bad outcome with that but this was so empowering for her to actually see that what she was eating almost on a daily basis was causing so many of these problems. Over time, we’re able to balance her hormones, get her blood sugar balanced. Get her feeling great. She dropped, I’m going to say nearly 25 pounds of inflammatory water weight and weight that she wanted to lose, by the end of working with her after a couple of months, she was feeling good enough to start doing 5ks again. I forgot to mention one of her symptoms at the outset was she was falling asleep at work. This is not a good situation. You don’t want to be I don’t know if it’s official narcolepsy or I’m not even sure. I know narcolepsy is an autoimmune condition but her fatigue was so great that she was falling asleep. After this her energy returned, her hair stopped falling out. She was able to get back to more regular cycles and honestly Ashley, it was astounding that it was mostly removing the bad things that were harming her and just adding a few supplements like getting her vitamin D levels up, getting her magnesium balance and up. Avoiding those favorite foods and she was really, really amazed with how she felt.

[01:07:36] Ashley James: No longer has IBS?

[01:07:38] Palmer Kippola: No longer has IBS. Doesn’t associate herself with having Hashimoto’s or celiac. She’s really clear on what she can eat or not. She’s just decided some of these foods are going to stay out. She knows if she chooses, which is empowering because now we have choices, right? Now we know cause and effect and we know if we want to add something back in and she knows what will happen if she does and that’s that.

[01:08:05] Ashley James: Just to clarify, she was diagnosed with IBS, hashimoto’s and colitis?

[01:08:12] Palmer Kippola: Celiac.

[01:08:13] Ashley James: Celiac, okay. Got it. That is so cool. I love it. How long from start to finish did it take for her?

[01:08:23] Palmer Kippola: I want to say two months of being diligent with her diet and working with me and adding back in the nutrients to really deal with some of the deficiencies like vitamin D and magnesium and vitamin B12. She was able to get back to life and in fact, she’s running 5kms now with her daughter. It’s super empowering. What happens is it is not just about her, this is the ripple effect of healing when somebody is able to overcome these health challenges they become a role model for their family and friends. So it becomes a ripple effect in the family and then in the community and you can just see the ripples in the pond going out. That’s super exciting.

[01:09:15] Ashley James: Super exciting. I love it. You mentioned magnesium. I want to let you know that I’ve been on my health journey healing, I had multiple problems, you listen to this show so you know but for listeners who’ve never heard. I had many health problems. I was very very sick. I had spent the last 10 years finding my own health solutions and something I really believe in, supplements. Magnesium is the most important mineral. Everyone thinks calcium is but magnesium actually is more important. They’re all important but magnesium, the body needs it so much and it’s so hard to get enough magnesium especially if someone has a gut issue. If you’ve been eating gluten grains and it has caused inflammation in your gut it’s very hard for your gut to absorb enough of the minerals, right? We have this catch 22 where our gut can’t absorb enough and then there’s not enough minerals in our soil anymore because of the farming practices of over a hundred years especially the pesticides that have been used in the soil. Even if we buy organic it doesn’t necessarily guarantee that we’re getting enough minerals. So we have to take supplements. Magnesium’s very hard to take orally either as a liquid or as a capsule and get to full self-saturation because if we do take a lot of it orally, magnesium just causes the smooth muscles, the bowel to go “wee” and then we’re running to the toilet which is the nicest way I could possibly say it causes diarrhea. Great for people with chronic constipation but if you have chronic constipation you need to look to that too. In my discovery of figuring out how to get full self-saturation because I have lots of magnesium supplements that I’ve enjoyed them all but again, couldn’t get the full self-saturation. There’s a 50-dollar blood test you can get when you go to walkinlab.com called magnesium RBC. It’s between 40 and 60 dollars because they always have it on sale. In the United States, you buy that test online and then you go to, they’ll tell you where your nearest lab is. They’ll draw your blood and they’ll send you the results. You don’t even have to see a doctor to check your magnesium levels. It wasn’t until through a friend of mine I discovered this magnesium soak that within one month of doing it every day gets – 76% of people reach full self-saturation. We absorb about 20g of magnesium every soak. I know. It blew me away. I did it and I’ve had a miner’s push before which is where they the naturopath will inject you with magnesium straight into your vein. You feel really drunk and kind of happy for a few minutes because it’s very relaxing. I felt that same feeling after my first soak. I went, “Oh my gosh, this is real” we can’t absorb magnesium readily from Epsom salt. It’s just not the right molecular size to absorb into the skin. This woman who I’ve had her on my show. She was like 70 something pounds in a wheelchair with 30 seizures a day and magnesium was one of the biggest things that helped her to recover her health. She ended up getting the magnesium from the Zechstein Sea and then shipping it here and then selling it in jugs. You basically soak a quarter of a cup in a basin of water, you put your feet in it and you soak for an hour and you absorb about 20g every time. Like I said, 76% of people get to full self-saturation within one month of doing it. It’s been really cool because you mentioned magnesium while you know and everyone else listening that they can use that. If you’re having problems absorbing through your gut then absorb through your skin and we can bypass that. It’s so cool, right? The website is, livingthegoodlifenaturally.com I know it’s a really long website to type in, livingthegoodlifenaturally.com and then the coupon code she gave all the listeners which gives them 10% off is LTH as in learn true health. If you want Palmer, I can connect you guys. You guys can chat because I think that you would love to, as I know all holistic health practitioner would love to connect directly with her, chat and learn more about her magnesium and her healing story. You mentioned that and I thought, “Oh, I’ve got to tell you.” My intuition said that you would really like to know more about that. Since that, it’s one of the clogs. Right? It’s so great that you cut out the grains and had such an amazing response. You were, however, for 26 years doing healthy things. It wasn’t like you walked out of a McDonald’s and with a coffee in one hand and having cigarette in the other. It’s not like you had this really unhealthy lifestyle and you just cut out grains and all of a sudden you didn’t have MS. You spent 26 years building a foundation of decreasing stress and eating healthy and looking for answers and that was the last, for you, that was the last hole in the bucket that made it just exponentially healed. Makes your body exponentially healed. For others it might be correcting sleep, dealing with infections, healing the gut, it might be hormone imbalance, toxins stress or it may be all of them. That’s why I like that you’re addressing all of them because you’re building a foundation of health by addressing all the FIGHTS together. I wanted to make sure that we touched on the fact that food being the F in FIGHTS that you have a free gift for the listeners because everyone goes, “Well, what should I eat?” I know that there are some people out there who no longer have MS because they’re vegan. It’s not necessarily that eating low carb high fat would work for everyone because for some people it’s like just eating a ton of vegetables and cutting out the meat was what their genes needed we don’t know. Doing the elimination diet and figuring out for themselves what they should eat for their better health is key. You’ve come up with a free gift that teaches people what they should eat by listening to their body. We’re going to have the link to that in the show notes of today’s podcast at learntruehealth.com the link is Palmerkippola.com/gift. We’ll make sure the link is there in the show notes because I just want to make sure that listeners who are at this point going, “Well, what should I eat?” Great, go get the free gift and it’s a guide to teach you how to listen to your body so that you can dial in what is best for you. Like I said, I know people who are vegan who reversed their MS and you sounds like you do a bit more like of a Paleo diet. Is that correct?

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[01:16:57] Palmer Kippola: That’s right. I don’t purport to know what diet is best for everybody that’s why this optimal food guide would be – I think of really good resource for people to find out what’s best for them. In my case, I’ve sort of landed on what I’ll call a paleo template diet where I eliminate grains, dairy and sugar and the meats that I do eat or the fish that I do eat or the poultry that I do eat is either going to be 100% grass-fed that means grass-fed and grass-finished. The chicken and turkey are happy free-range and important note about this, we’re not just what we eat. We’re whatever we eat ate. Super important to pay attention to what do those cows eat? When we digest and ingest that food, that profile of the meat of a cow that’s been fed corn, which by the way cows are allergic to corn, you really want to make sure that you’re ingesting something at is biologically a match for you. If you are going to eat meat do opt for 100% grass-fed. I have heard it think it was Dr. Pozorno say that meat is one of the most important foods, Dr. Lee Cowden said this because meats can concentrate pesticides and herbicides three times more and maybe even greater than that than any other source. If you’re eating vegetables that are conventionally grown yes, you’ll get the pesticide and herbicide. Meat becomes more important to find the wild, the free-range, the healthy pastured version of what you eat. We do try to find poultry from farmer’s markets where the chickens are eating bugs and grubs. Organic chicken just means that those chickens are eating organic corns and organic soy. If you have a problem with grains or soy, you might still have issue and not know what the problem is. Until you’ve removed the chicken. That was very surprising to me. I just want to mention that to listeners that you have to really put your detective hat on. Just be really curious about that’s going.

[01:19:24] Ashley James: That’s very interesting. My son was colic and we figured out that there was a handful of food like broccoli, onion, garlic. I’m dairy-free anyway. I’m allergic to dairy. My husband’s allergic so we just assumed our son was and sure enough, he definitely was when we tried formula. When I was breastfeeding, he would have horrible reactions to the foods that I ate. It’s just like what the chicken eats, if you’re allergic to what the chicken eats, don’t eat the chicken. I had to cut out the foods. I wasn’t allergic to those foods but my baby was allergic to those foods. I had to cut out those foods when I was breastfeeding because it was giving him really horrible pain and gas. I just makes sense that we need to be diligent. Be a food detective. I like how Dr. Mark Hyman talks about, “If you’re going to eat meat, make it be a condiment.” It okay if that’s 12$ a pound, you’re not eating a pound of it. You’re making it a condiment. We don’t need the giant steak, we don’t need the meat to be the centerpiece of the meal. It’s more of a condiment for the nutrient.” I myself don’t eat meat right now. My husband went vegan a year and a half ago. I’m experimenting myself. I went from pescatarian to vegan. I’m just experimenting. I’m going to see. I’m getting my bloodwork this week from my naturopath. We’ll see how it’s going for me. It’s about experimenting and be willing to try different things see how it feels and if you have cravings. I love that you brought up it, someone allergic, your client is allergic to these foods but craving them. Craving sometimes can mean that we are nutrient deficient and the body is seeing those nutrients but it can also mean that it has that dopamine addiction to it as well. Those hyper-palatable foods of salt, sugar, and oil are a bit addictive. The brain lights up just like cocaine and heroine that we need to recognize that the body’s become addicted to these hyper-palatable foods. Do those deep breaths. Those moments of food addiction where my body is going towards the cravings and it’s like, “Wait a second, is that what my body really needs? Does my brain really want dopamine?” and I have to do those deep breaths. I like that you help your client address that the cravings especially when you’re doing food eliminations those craving come back with a vengeance. We have to catch ourselves and realize that, “Yes, my body might be nutrient deficient that why it has craving but it also might be dopamine deficient so let’s go watch some YouTube videos that make us laugh and get dopamine somewhere else.”

[01:22:21] Palmer Kippola: That’s is great. I can add to that just a moment. You mentioned addiction and craving the opposite of that is aversion. Things that we don’t like and don’t want. I have found that people sometimes who have an aversion to meat, they don’t care for the taste it just turns them off or sometimes deficient in zinc. That is something just to pay attention to, you can do a zinc challenge and taste it. Just do a little bit of zinc after eating so you don’t get nauseous. That’s sometimes clears up that aversion to meat so just wanted to add that.

[01:22:59] Ashley James: That’s fascinating and zinc is so important for our immune health. Very cool. Awesome. All right so we talked about the food and we talked about infections. Let’s talk a bit about gut health. How do you help people restore their gut health? Do you recommend they eat a bunch of fermented foods and avoid grains? Or is it more about listening to the body and seeing what helping, what not helping?

[01:23:26] Palmer Kippola: Yes, such a good question. I just want to step back a tiny bit because the gut is so central in the development and healing of autoimmune conditions that we can’t talk about autoimmune healing without talking about the gut. It turns out that in the early 2000s, Alessio Fasano and his team at Harvard found the final element in the autoimmune equation that is the leaky gut or scientifically known as intestinal hyperpermeability. When we’re eating these sad foods or taking medications in some cases or even having stress, those factors can all cause our guts to become leaky. That had been proven to bet the pathway or gateway to developing autoimmune conditions. The exciting part about having an autoimmune equation is we can flip it to heal it. Meaning, if we remove the things that are causing the inflammation and the leakiness and we heal and seal the lining of our gut, we can as Dr. Fisano says, arrest and reverse the autoimmune condition. This is no longer conjecture and myth or wishful thinking that we can reverse these conditions. We now understand that there is science behind this leaky gut. That scientist for year purports that this is not being real. Well, it is very real and we know many things that lead to it. We also know what we can do to restore it. When it comes to repairing our gut the first and foremost we musts top putting things in that are harmful. Those would be the inflammatory elements that we’ve talked bout. There might be suspect foods that are toxic to some and are helpful to other. I have one problem with eggs or nuts as an example but for somebody else, their kryptonite might be eggs. That elimination diet can help you define and refine your foods at least for maybe 6 months those are what you’ll enjoy, you need to get rid of some for short term while you’re healing your gut because if you continue to eat things that are causing your gut to be permeable, so if I wanted to bring the MS back, I might start eating gluten again, sit down to sandwiches, pasta and so forth. We now know that there are many medications that create permeable intestines. There are actually Ashley, I think there is a study that says that there are 90 medications are known to induce Lupus by creating a permeable gut. It’s really known information. This is not hidden information, this is out there. So whatever you can do to minimize unnecessary medications, to eliminate those sad foods and get rid of toxins in your environment. I only recently understood that stress creates a leaky gut like getting ready to do public speaking, for example, creates intestinal permeability. Some things are not all stress is bad and some of it is growth-oriented but we are stuck in that always-on, stress response, that is when our gut stay open and permeable. The first step in any kind of gut healing program is to make sure that we’re minimizing the things that are causing harm.

[01:27:04] Ashley James: Right, yes. Just like inflammation is a good thing when it’s acute but not when its chronic and always turned on. I know that Advil or Ensets I’ve been told increase gut permeability and also harm the liver but they do increase gut permeability causing leaky gut. I had a neighbor once, this is just a few years ago, 21-year-old woman who is going through chemo not for cancer. The doctor decided to give her chemo for lupus. That just blew me away because I even knew back then that cutting out gluten and cleaning up diet played such a huge role in autoimmune. I’ve been gluten-free for 8 years with my husband and just to see that she was suffering so horribly going through chemo for what – just that MD could’ve looked into the research and seen what you saw but instead he chose to give her chemo. Chemo’s the one medication that doctors actually get kickback from something like 2500 dollars every dose. They get a kickback. It infuriates me this young woman’s potentially her entire youth has been destroyed because she’s suffering greatly from chemo which was obviously not helping the lupus. We have to be diligent. We have to advocate for ourselves. You always have to get 2nd or 3rd opinion, don’t put the doctor to the pedestal. Obviously, always seek a doctor of I never recommend someone especially if you have symptoms that you avoid medical attention. It’s just get more opinions and do your own research and be willing to keep seeking answers especially when it comes to a surgery or treatment like we should really, really make sure that it is the best option for us. Food, infection, gut health, hormone balance. Now, you are a functional medicine practitioner, health coach that you can get people to do blood tests. Tell us did you do labs and blood tests? How does that work? How do you help people to balance their hormones?

[01:29:47] Palmer Kippola: I partner with functional medicine practitioners that’s how I can get the lab work done. One reason why hormones is last in the book in terms of a core chapter, the book is not in the same order that FIGHTS is spelled. We start with food then we go to gut health which we’ve just talked about but hormones is last strategically because often times when you deal with the other root causes, your hormones can fall back into balance. That really is the goal to do whatever we can from a lifestyle perspective first. Some of the biggest hormone imbalances that we see with autoimmune conditions are high insulin, high cortisol. Insulin again that’s going to be when you’re eating high carbohydrate foods. We also see the diabetes increase through the environmental toxins. There are the two things you can control and if you remove the toxins from your environment, you go lower carb, you can lower the insulin potentially. High cortisol being one if you address stress we can bring cortisol into a balance. Low thyroid is very common. It is probably one of the most common hormonal imbalances we see and that is something that can also get regulated when we do everything else for ourselves including removing the sugar and addressing stress. High estrogen, estrogen dominance. This is something that’s both common in both in men and women.  It doesn’t just mean that your estrogen is high. It’s relative to progesterone. Progesterone is the calming hormone. We want those hormones to be in balance. The two other final imbalances we often see are low vitamin D and low DHEA. In the book, because hormones is such a complicated category each chapter is a little book onto itself. I give people tips and strategies for how to address things naturally. If you need additional help, how to find a practitioner who deals in bio-identical hormones which are not the hormone replacement therapy, which are the synthetic hormones but rather, if you’re going into the route of hormone therapy, you want to make sure that they’re bio-identical in nature. From my experience, I dealt with all six of those hormonal imbalances. So I offer a story from my own perspective on how high levels of sugar and high levels of stress created a hormonal mess for me for many, many years.

[01:32:39] Ashley James: How much did your hormones come back into a balance by just shifting food and gut health?

[01:32:40] Palmer Kippola: I wish I could tell you like a wimble that wobbles but it doesn’t fall down when you take your hands off. It just goes right back to balance. That wasn’t the case for me. Part of my personal story is that my hormones were so imbalanced when I was 15 years old. I had excruciating cramps and actually had to miss school on occasion because they were so bad. I had a gynecologist who put me on a birth control pill very, very, early and told me to stay on the pill until I decided to have children. This is the same gynecologist who ran my blood test for a while. Why would I doubt her? She’s the expert, right? For years and years, I just did what she told me to do and she ran my blood tests and told me that my total cholesterol of 104 was excellent. This is opening a can of worms.

[01:33:44] Ashley James: For those who don’t know, that’s way to low. For those that don’t know. There’s healthy cholesterol and we need it, we want it to be high. The body needs a certain amount. The cholesterol is so important that the liver makes it. How cholesterol medication works, it bruises the liver to the point where the liver ceases to function correctly and liver can’t make cholesterol. What drives me crazy is that doctors will put people on cholesterol medication but don’t tell them to stop, like stop eating fried food, stop eating the fats that are damaged. They have oxidative damage on them which increases unhealthy cholesterol. They’ll give you a medication that damages your liver so your liver stops producing good cholesterol and then they won’t tell you to stop eating bad cholesterol. It just drives me up the wall. There’s a balance. We need to have healthy fats. It’s so important that the liver makes it. The myelin sheath on your nerves are made from fat and MS is when the myelin sheath is destroyed and then the nerves are inflamed. Hello, of course. You are set up for having MS if you didn’t have enough healthy fats from the body. They are the raw building blocks for the body to produce myelin sheet.

[01:35:04] Palmer Kippola: That’s right. That’s beautifully said. I’ll throw in a little factoid here that just completely floored me. The countries with the lowest cholesterol, in other words like my gynecologist that 104 was excellent, die the fastest. Highest all-cause mortality and the countries with highest cholesterol lives the longest. That’s research that is available for anybody that wants to find that. Cholesterol it turns out is essential for our health and it’s the foundational building blocks of our hormones, our cell membrane, and our brain health. Our brain is 60% fat. We need healthy cholesterol. It’s all about the balance of different types of cholesterol that is, what I’ll say about this is I was a hormonal mess that I didn’t just regulate back to balance by getting everything else in line and I opted for bio-identical hormones and now my hormone are finally in balance. You know I never felt better. It can be done and if I was suffering in all six of those hormonal imbalances. I’m doing great now than I know that you can heal.

[01:36:18] Ashley James: Beautiful. I definitely want my listeners who have autoimmune to get your book, make sure the links to your book is on the show notes of today’s podcast of learntruehealth.com. Tell us a bit about who should read your book, is it only people with autoimmune or is it people that want to just generally be healthy? Tell us a bit about your book and who it serves.

[01:36:44] Palmer Kippola: I wrote the book with the intention to – it’s the book that I would’ve wanted at 19 when I didn’t know what to do to my younger self. I wanted a step by step but for anyone, the first audience would be people who are suffering, who are actively seeking healing and don’t really know what to do next. That would include people that are finding it difficult to afford a natural medicine or naturopathic practitioner. I really urge people if you can to work with somebody because they will help you shortcut your time to healing. It was so worthy investment in yourself if you can do that. My book is actually quite popular now with integrative and functional medicine ad naturopathic physicians who also wanted to help their clients so they’re actually buying it for their offices which I was thrilled to see that happening. That would be the first level, is people who are actively seeking to heal. I have clients who I’ve worked with who are seeking to prevent an autoimmune condition because it runs in their family, everybody has a thyroid problem. Their father had MS and they don’t want to go down path. They just want to know what they can do to prevent something. If you put those two categories together that’s basically everybody because I don’t know what the actual stats are Ashley, maybe you know better than I do. At least one in five people is dealing with an autoimmune condition that may be diagnosed. Many, many more people had mysterious symptoms from joint pain and brain fog to profound fatigue to insomnia to infertility to numbness and tingling and migraines and all of those mysterious symptoms are messages from your body that something is out of balance. Anybody that’s dealing with mysterious symptoms, who has an official diagnosis or want to prevent one, this is who is book is for.

[01:38:51] Ashley James: I love it. So many people have mystery symptoms and they’re seeking information that’s why they’re listening today. I hope they get your book and they apply all the lessons to helping them figure out the foods that are most important for them and reducing the inflammation and the infections, helping their gut health, reducing toxins and stress, of course balancing their hormones. That’ll help a hundred percent of the population everyone could benefit especially those who are beating autoimmune. It has been such a pleasure having you on the show today. I wonder, do you have any stories of success or have you heard from people who have also reversed their MS using your protocol?

[01:39:37] Palmer Kippola: Absolutely, yes. In fact, most of the people who follow me who are MS warriors themselves who are actively seeking to heal from or have beat MS. I will end with this story one of my favorites is a client who was diagnosed with MS actually the information the letter came to her in the mail from Kaiser Permanente saying the results of her MRI are in and it seemed that they were consistent with MS. She experienced the loss of vision in one eye, numbness on one side of her body, almost stroke-like symptoms and she was in her mid-30s, had two young kids and a husband, waking up one morning unable to function and to see properly. Just was absolutely terrified. When to the neurologist and got her results as I’ve said by mail. Somebody who knows us both connected us and I was able to talk with her before her second appointment because the neurologist was insisting that she go on injectable medication immediately and he wanted to do a spinal tap which I’ve never have done but I can’t imagine was pleasant. I got in the phone with her and was able to transmit the certainty that I have based on all my research, my personal experience working with other clients that if she was willing to work with me, give it a couple of months, try the elimination diet, work with me about reducing her stress, would she be willing to let the neurologist know, “Look, I know where you are and I will schedule my follow up appointment with you after I’ve tried these lifestyle interventions. If they don’t work, I know where you are.” and she said yes, she was willing to wait. So I worked with her, coached her for probably 6 weeks or so where we talk every week. We still talk maybe not as often maybe once every 6 weeks. She found out what her trigger food were, removed them and her big issues he felt were chronic stress also growing up in childhood. She had a really difficult situation both parents either had alcoholism or drug addiction and were not able to care of her so she grew up with her grandmother. She has a lot of stress that was manifesting with her current life with her kids. A lot of it she felt was driven by her past. Once she was able to feel better after removing those foods, after about 6 weeks she stopped having any and all MS symptom. Nothing was noticeable anymore after she removed the foods and healed her gut. Then she was able to have the energy to deal with those profound stressors from childhood and she started a forgiveness practice. She started doing gratitude journaling every night. Now her family, her kids no longer ask her for sweet things. She has actually become a role model for health and other people look up to her for information. This is another one of those ripple effect stories. Her husband revered symptoms of type II diabetes. Her children are off sugar. She is an icon for healing with food. That’s not an isolated incident this is most people when you take the bad stuff out, it’s been one of the most profound surprises that I’ve experienced. It can be way more simple than you know if you’re just willing to put your detective hat on. Give it a try, get some testing done. Yes, there might be an infection to clear up. Yes, there might be mercury poisoning that you need to deal with but the end result is this freedom and it’s just been a super good news story.

[01:43:49] Ashley James: I love it. Thank you so much, Palmer for coming in the show today and sharing this awesome information. It definitely fill people with hope to know that yes, they can completely reverse their autoimmune condition. They can improve their health. For those who have mystery symptoms, following the keys in your book will help them restore their body. I think everyone’s going to get some great information for your book. I highly recommend people buy it and try it out for themselves. If they have any questions, they can go to your website, Palmerkippola.com. Especially go to palmerkippola.com/gift and get the free guide. Is there anything left unsaid? Is there anything that you would like to share to wrap up today’s interview?

[01:44:39] Palmer Kippola: I would like to invite people to get still within yourself and allow your own intuition to come forth and to maybe ask yourself the question that that family friend asked me many, many years ago, “Why do think you got this blank?” Whatever it is. If you’re dealing with something that you got a diagnosis or if you’ve got mysterious symptoms. Why do you think that is? Allow time for the answer to bubble up. Really acknowledge that because chances are pretty good, you already know what’s out of balance in your life. Maybe it’s you really wanted to do something different in your life and you didn’t take that path or maybe you’re in a situation where you’re not happy at work or your relationship is not working. I believe that these autoimmune conditions are really an invitation to us to wake up to who we truly are. We may not see the gift at the moment when we’re going through the middle of these awful symptoms but I just want to invite people to dig deeper and really know that you can get to the root of what’s going on.

[01:46:02] Ashley James: Beautiful. Excellent. Thank you so much Palmer Kippola for coming on the show today. It’s been a pleasure to have you share this information that I know will help to transform people’s lives. I feel honored that you are here to share this information and I am so thrilled for the potential of how many people you’ve just helped. So thank you so much.

[01:46:28] Palmer Kippola: Thank you, Ashley. It’s been an honor and a delight.

[01:46:31] Ashley James: Hello, true health seeker. Have you ever thought about becoming a health coach? Do you love learning about nutrition and how we can shift our lifestyle and our diet so that we can gain optimal health and happiness and longevity? Do you love helping your friends and family to solve their health problems and figure out what they can do to eat healthier? Are you interested in becoming someone who can grow their own business, support people in their success? Do you love helping people? You might be the perfect candidate to become a health coach. I highly recommend checking out the Institute for Integrated Nutrition. I just spent the last year in their health-coaching sort of vacation program and it really blew me away. It was so amazing. I learned over a hundred dietary theories. I learned all about nutrition but from the standpoint on how we can help people to shift their life, to shift their lifestyle to gain true holistic health. I definitely recommend you check them out. You can google Institute for Integrated Nutrition or IIN, or give them a call or you can go to learntruehealth.com/coach and you can receive a free module of their training. So check it out and see if it’s something that you’d be interested in. Be sure to mention my name, Ashley James and the Learn True Health podcast because I made a deal with them that they would give you the best price possible. I highly recommend checking it out. It really changed my life to be in their program. I’m such a big advocate that I wanted to spread this information. We need more health coaches. In fact, health coaching is the largest growing career right now in the health field. So many health coaches are getting in and helping people because you can work in chiropractic offices, doctor’s offices, you can work in hospitals. You can work online through Skype and help people around the world. You can become an author. You can go into the school system and help with your local schools shift their programs to help children be healthier. You can go into senior centers and help them to shift their diet and lifestyle to best support them and their success and their health goals. There’s so many different available options for you when you become a certified health coach. So check out IIN. Check out the Institute for Integrated Nutrition. Mention my name. Get the best deal. Give them a call and they’ll give you lots of free information and help you to see if this is the right move for you. Classes are starting soon. The next round of classes are starting at the end of the month, so you’re going to want to call them now and check it out. If you know anyone in your life who would be an amazing coach, please tell them about it. Being a health coach is so rewarding and you get to help so many people.

[01:49:39] Ashley James: Are you looking to optimize your health? Are you looking to get the best supplements at the lowest price? For high-quality supplements and to talk to someone about what supplements are best for you, go to takeyoursupplements.com and one of our fantastic true health coaches will help you pick out the right supplements for you that are highest quality and the best price. That’s takeyoursupplements.com. Be sure to ask about free shipping and our awesome referral program.

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Ashley James

Health Coach, Podcast Creator, Homeschooling Mom, Passionate About God & Healing

Ashley James is a Holistic Health Coach, Podcaster, Rapid Anxiety Cessation Expert, and avid Whole Food Plant-Based Home Chef. Since 2005 Ashley has worked with clients to transform their lives as a Master Practitioner and Trainer of Neuro-linguistic Programming.

Her health struggles led her to study under the world’s top holistic doctors, where she reversed her type 2 diabetes, PCOS, infertility, chronic infections, and debilitating adrenal fatigue.

In 2016, Ashley launched her podcast Learn True Health with Ashley James to spread the TRUTH about health and healing. You no longer need to suffer; your body CAN and WILL heal itself when we give it what it needs and stop what is harming it!

The Learn True Health Podcast has been celebrated as one of the top holistic health shows today because of Ashley’s passion for extracting the right information from leading experts and doctors of holistic health and Naturopathic medicine


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