Interview with Beth Manos Brickey, chatting about taking a step back and looking at your health, overcoming keto diet dogma from a place of body kindness, the freedom that comes when you stop following rules and start making changes that fit your body’s individuality, and so much more.
Within this space, I have lived many lives, all of them have brought me to where I am right now, and I am so thankful to be here. That being said, there’s a lot of pressure to do everything the “right” way, not just as a blogger, but as a human being. Keto is no exception, and I know I’m not the only one who gets bummed out by the keto dogma.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again for the people in the back: THERE IS NO ONE WAY TO KETO! We’re all here, trying to do what’s best for our own individual body — I don’t have time to dwell on what other people do, right or wrong, and neither do you. So how to we get out off the comparison train and back to what really matters? How can we forge our own path when we keep running into the judgement boobytraps?
In today’s podcast, I chat with our guest Beth Manos Brickey, a Certified Nutritional Therapist, yoga instructor, and the creative force behind Tasty Yummies, who believes that everyone can find their own path to wellness through exploration, experimentation, and intuition.
This episode is all about how to tap into your intuition so that you can listen to your body and build a nourishing lifestyle, way of eating, mindset, and more.
Let’s get to the interview!
For podcast transcript, scroll down.
SHOW NOTES + LINKS
- Subscribe on iTunes or your favorite podcast app
- Take 15% off your Wild & Free clean makeup purchase with code HEALTHP15
- Download the Think Dirty App
- More from Beth Manos Brickey on her website and Instagram
- Practices to connect to your sacred self (14:36)
- How to approach keto keeping sacred self in mind (21:35)
- How to tap into your body feedback to determine what resonates with your body (27:20)
PARTNERS OF THE KETO DIET PODCAST
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TRANSCRIPT FOR THIS EPISODE
Leanne Vogel: You’re listening to Episode Number 66 of the Keto Diet Podcast. Today, we’re chatting about how to step out of Keto rules and create a diet that works for you, how to tap into your body’s feedback to determine what to do, what not to do and what resonates with your body, how to overcome the fear you have with trusting your body and yourself, as well as the freedom that comes when you stop following the rules and start making changes that fit your body’s individuality. Stay tuned.
Hey, I’m Leanne from HealthfulPursuit.com, and this is The Keto Diet Podcast. Keto is a low-carb, high-fat diet where we’re switching from a sugar-burning state to becoming fat-burning machines. Starting keto and maintaining it long-term can be quite a challenge if you don’t feel supported.
My 60-day program, The Keto Bundle, provides you with clear, step-by-step how-to on successfully adapting to a ketogenic diet, avoiding common ketogenic struggles, and healing your body completely and fully with a ketogenic diet. Go to HealthfulPursuit.com/bundle, and use the coupon code PODCAST all in caps, no spaces to get 10% off your order, exclusive for podcast listeners only. Now, let’s get this party started.
Hey guys. Happy Sunday. I can’t even believe it’s 2018 tomorrow. If you celebrate New Year’s, and you’re all about it, I hope you’re living your truth and feeling awesome. I don’t really do the New Year thing. I see a new year as being my birthday, so that’s a huge celebration for me, but if you are out partying or you had a great holiday season, if you do celebrate, that is awesome. Welcome back to the world, and I wish you all the health and success and love and amazingness in this new year.
The show notes and full transcript for today’s episode can be found at HealthfulPursuit.com/Podcast/E66. The transcript is added to the post about three to five days following the initial air date of this episode. Now, let’s hear from one of our awesome partners.
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If you’re struggling with keto, take for a couple of days, and you’ll be well on your way post haste. Perfect Keto is available in chocolate sea salt and peaches and cream flavors. My personal favorite is peaches and cream. Just add it to water, shake it up, and drink whenever you need it. Use the coupon code “HEALTHFUL”, all in caps, no spaces, for 15% off at HealthfulPursuit.com/ketones. Unsure of the link? Simply check out the show notes of today’s episode to get all of the details.
Okay, we have two announcements today. The first is that after our Episode 54, which I’ll include in the show notes, or if you’re listening to a podcast player, you can just rewind back to Episode 54, we chatted about artificial estrogens and we chatted a lot about the toxins in makeup, which really got me thinking, and also a little bit terrified, that I needed to finally give up my MAC makeup and switch over to something a lot cleaner that was going to support my health. I mean, let’s face it: we all work really, really hard on feeling good and making adjustments for our health, but often times, we miss entire buckets of things, and my entire bucket of things was my make up.
I knew. I knew I wasn’t using the best makeup but just having that conversation was just like, “Okay, I got to do this.” I’ve slowly been shifting out my makeup and I’ve been sharing pictures of my face recently, and you guys have been asking what I’m using because you noticed that it’s different, so I’ve been trying out a clean makeup from a site called Wild and Free, and I’m totally loving it. Wild and Free is a nontoxic beauty and skincare brand owned by a holistic esthetician from Virginia who believes that buying natural, nontoxic products should be simple and accessible. Every product that she makes is handmade. Her name is Carolyn, and she makes them in small batches using locally handpicked ingredients to ensure quality, and she believes that no one should need to decode the ingredients in beauty products.
You can head over to the Wild and Free shop in Etsy, I’ll include the link in the show notes, and Carolyn was gracious enough to put together a coupon code for you guys, so if you use the coupon code, HEALTHP15. That’s H-E-A-L-T-H-P 15 at checkout, you get 15% off your purchase. I’m really excited. If you’re looking for some new makeup, I really, really love the mineral makeup. The coverage is awesome. The mascara is really great, too, and so is the eye serum. I mean, it’s just all good.
Also, an app that I’ve been using to get a feel for what are good things and what are not so good things in makeup is the Think Dirty app. You can go to ThinkDirtyApp.com to check it out. It rates beauty and personal care products based on toxicity and rates the ingredients individually. I would highly recommend maybe scanning some of your favorite products and seeing what comes out. I’m sorry in advance because it might frustrate you, all of these “clean products” that aren’t actually that clean. Quite frustrating, but you guys asked, so there’s the information. Take it or leave it.
Today’s guest, her name is Beth Manos Brickey. She is a cook, photographer, writer and inspiration behind Tasty Yummies, as well as a certified nutritional therapist and yoga instructor. Beth believes that everyone, no matter their individual dietary issues, can find their own path to wellness through exploration, experimentation and intuition. Her goal is to provide support, tools and knowledge along the way, empowering her readers to make better decisions about their diet and their health. Beth posted on Instagram awhile back, I think around in August, about the glorification of busy, and that really resonated with me. I loved her message of taking time to just be still, to engage with herself and nothing else. We’re conditioned to think that disconnecting is a selfish practice, when really choosing to connect with ourselves makes us better aware of our wants and needs, which helps us lead more fulfilled lives. That positivity spills over into everyone we meet, and also the way we choose to align our eating styles with our body.
Today, we’re going to be chatting all about honoring our sacred self and nourishing our individuality, and understanding how our body sends us messages that we can then use to adjust our diet so instead of picking up a book and wondering why XYZ is happening and we’re fretting over something that happened and we’re not really sure, and we’re reading all these books, we’re reading all these blog posts, we’re listening to all these podcasts like, “Why is this happening to me?” Taking a moment every day to just check in with yourself. Start journaling, start understanding what’s happening to your body, it really takes the guesswork out of your diet because you don’t need to guess anymore. You’re using your body as a feedback mechanism to being able to make changes on the fly.
Knowing when you’re hungry, knowing when you’re not, knowing what you need, and although it sounds a little bit scary … I know that when I first started this work, it was terrifying like, “My body doesn’t know what it needs, if it was up to my body, I would eat a pound of candy every day,” but actually, your body doesn’t want that because it doesn’t feel good that way. It’s getting through all of that gunk to understand what your body actually needs and wants so that you don’t have to be spending all of this time reading and listening and engaging with other things in order for other people to tell you what to do with your body.
Without further ado, let’s cut over to this interview.
The Keto Diet Podcast, including show notes and links provides information in respect to healthy living, recipes, nutrition, and diet and is intended for informational purposes only. The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, nor is it to be construed as such. We cannot guarantee that the information provided on The Keto Diet Podcast reflects the most up-to-date medical research. Information is provided without any representations or warranties of any kind. Please consult a qualified physician for medical advice and always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding your health and nutrition program.
Hey, Beth. How’s it going?
Beth Manos Brickey: I’m great. How are you, Leanne?
Leanne Vogel: I’m so good. Thanks for coming on the show. I feel like you should have come much sooner than now.
Beth Manos Brickey: Well, I am happy to be here no matter when, so thank you.
Leanne Vogel: Oh yeah. For listeners who may not be familiar with your work, why don’t you start off by telling us a little bit about yourself, how you practice keto, all the things.
Beth Manos Brickey: Great. My name is Beth Manos Brickey. I have a website called Tasty Yummies. I’ve had my website since 2010, and it’s evolved from me following my own journey towards health and healing. It’s mostly recipes, it’s a lot of how-to’s, and it’s evolved as my life has evolved to sharing health and healing advice. I am also a nutritional therapy practitioner and a yoga instructor. Yeah, as far as keto goes, I don’t want to say I fell into it earlier this year, but I decided to dabble because there were so many amazing people that I highly respect, yourself included, that I was like well, they’re selling this hard and not in a preachy, dogmatic way but I could see some people were really getting some great results.
I have some autoimmune conditions, one of which is an autoimmune form of kidney disease, and I’ve been working tirelessly for the last couple of years to try and get it into remission and done a lot of various healing protocols and detoxes and things to discovering that my gut was not right. I had an excess of pathogenic bacteria and a parasite, and all these other things. Then, even through all of that, I didn’t quite get my kidney disease in remission. I am stubborn, if I am not anything, so the next step was try something new. I decided to start January of this year experimenting going with how I felt. I haven’t yet retested my kidneys. I wanted to give my body a full year of really working at something, and that’s where I’m at with it. This January, it’ll be a solid year of keto, which I am very happy about.
Leanne Vogel: That is so awesome. I can remember when you first started. I can’t believe it’s been a year already. Time flies.
Beth Manos Brickey: I know. I keep wanting to say to people, “Oh, I just started,” because sometimes, like anything in life, you do it a little and it just feels like when you look at other people, I feel so new still, but yeah, it’ll be a year.
Leanne Vogel: That’s nuts. You mentioned a dogmatic way of sharing a diet. What have you seen, or what have you experienced when it comes to dogma diets in your own personal experience?
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah, I feel like I don’t think it’s exclusive at all to keto, and if anything, I feel like it’s one of the “labeled” diets that I don’t see too much of and maybe I’m just not deeply exposing myself to people that are hardcore keto people. I remember having my blog since 2010, and in 2010 there weren’t a lot of gluten-free websites. There weren’t a lot of food blogs in general comparing to now, but for me, approaching my health through food and seeing the effects it could have on my body, I can understand why what is working for you is what you want to put out into the world and tell everybody they should do.
In the first few years of having my website, however, I was following a lot of bloggers and that was about the time, maybe for me at least and coming into my consciousness, I started seeing the paleo community growing. While there were tons of people that were at the forefront that were not dogmatic, there were a lot of people at the forefront, but also in my opinion, it was a lot of the people following it that it almost became a religion. To be fully honest, and I’ve said this to a lot of friends that are deeply rooted in the paleo community that I highly respect, it was what turned me off. Sadly, it was to my own detriment because it ended up being that as my own diet and health evolved, I found myself to paleo in realizing that that was the first step to going deeper into looking at my food and understanding how individualistic it could be, but seeing how gnarly people were with each other and how mean and nasty and, “Oh, you’re not doing it right,” and “Oh, if you’re eating white rice, you’re not paleo.”
It became very sketchy, so it turned me off and it made me not want to even try experimenting with that lifestyle and that way of eating because I just didn’t even want to expose myself to that. Yeah, you see it. I think vegans see it because you’re either not vegan enough, or calling yourself plant-based isn’t the right way to say it. No matter what you choose, there’s always somebody running behind you scolding you for it. It’s one of the big motivating factors for me in sharing what I share on my website and trying to do it in an exclusive way, if that makes sense.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, you’ve done such a great job at that. We started our blogs around the same time, and it’s been so cool to check up on your website once in a while, follow you on Instagram and just see how you’ve grown, and we’ve grown. It’s a really interesting experience just to see your health, too. I mean, the last time we saw each other in person, you were in a very different place health wise.
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah, yeah. It was a couple years ago, but I think it was right at the start of this most recent journey. Yeah, it’s actually exciting to look back and be like … It almost feels like a different person, and I’m sure you can relate because you’ve been through so much yourself, but you look back and you’re like, “Wow, what I knew then felt like the epitome of what was to know,” and now I look back and I’m like, “Wow, it’s been so much and I’ve learned so much and experimented with so much.” It’s pretty cool.
Leanne Vogel: Really awesome words you just used are learning, experimenting, and those are a lot of things that people don’t feel confident enough to do on their own is that experimentation. I’d like to chat about how experimentation with your eating style was really intertwined with maybe your self-care and honoring your sacred self, and how that gave you the confidence to experiment and trust your body.
Beth Manos Brickey: It’s been such a journey, and I don’t ever like to think I’m at the end of the journey because I feel like in five more years, I’ll probably realize in this moment I’m at the start of some new journey, but there’s a few really key moments for me where I had to take a major step back and look at what I had been doing and where I was approaching my health. Like so many women, there were many, many years were I was probably lying to myself and telling myself that whatever I was doing wasn’t for weight loss, or to look better, or to lose weight. I would tell myself it was, “Oh, I wanted to feel better. I want to feel better.” Or, this or that. That’s when your eating style can get very disordered and it can feel ortharexic in a sense of setting too many rules without the right expectations, if that makes sense.
Over the last couple of years, once we moved to California from upstate New York, and I found a naturopathic doctor that I really loved and trusted. After I was diagnosed with the kidney disease, I remember I going into her office and talking through what I had been doing, what we thought I should be doing, and I recall her saying to me, “Are you stressed?” I thought no, my life’s really awesome. It’s pretty chill. I’m just enjoying life. I’m good. She was like okay. Then, the next time I would come in, she would ask me that and I started to realize through all of the back and forth with my diet and trying things, I was missing a really key thing and that was self-love. It was almost like I was making decisions from a place of fear and being worried about what was happening next, or what I looked like, or what was going to help me lose weight, or how many calories were right or wrong.
It was never for the right reasons. It was never about loving myself first, and knowing that I deserved to feel my best. Whether that was digestively, or hormonally, or energetically, or any of those things, I just think once my approach to my eating and my health and my all of it combined, once it was coming from a place of, “I deserve to feel my best,” I think that’s when I had a massive shift in just everything. I use the term sacred self when I’m teaching yoga, or a meditation class, or even with my nutrition clients, and for me, it just comes down to trusting that you know what’s best for you and honoring that you deserve to feel your best and honoring that divine within … Not to sound to yoga-teacher’y but that it’s not about you need to eat this way because you aren’t good enough, or you need to eat this way because right now you’re not perfect and this next choice of a meal will make you more perfect.
I think it’s about knowing that you’re already perfect how you are, and that you deserve whatever you need to feel your very best. I don’t know if that even makes sense, but I just think that for me, it’s been a journey of making choices from a place of love.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, it totally made sense to me. I feel ya. Were there any practices, you mentioned yoga, but were there any things that you were doing for yourself to get yourself in that mind space? I’m sure a lot of people that just heard what you said, they’re like, “Sorry, what?” How do I even get in that space where I’m able to … Because it takes a level of confidence and trust in your body to even get to that point. Were there practices that you did to get there?
Beth Manos Brickey: You know, I always jokingly say that yoga was my gateway drug to self-love. From the first time I stepped on a yoga mat to becoming a certified yoga instructor, there were many, many years between, and I wouldn’t say I stepped on my mat and I just thought, “Oh my God. I love myself. I’m killing it today. I’m amazing.” That’s not at all what happened. I stepped on my yoga mat, like so many other people, especially women, and I thought I really don’t want to be in the front of the class because I don’t want anyone looking at me and I bet my butt looks really big in these pants. Did I choose the right … How do I look in this pose? It was like so many other people.
Yoga played a big role in the sense of over time, as my practice evolved, I started to learn and respect and love my body for everything it could do instead of constantly shaming myself and my body for all of the things it wasn’t. I was always able to look in the mirror and pick apart my body and be like, “Oh, your thighs are too big or your stomach’s too flabby, or your this is too that.” While I stepped on my yoga mat, I didn’t stop doing those things to myself, but it was the beginning of me learning that while in my mind I wasn’t perfect, what my body had done for me up until that point was everything I needed it to, and if I didn’t take care of it and I didn’t treat it with love and respect and kindness and compassion and all of the things that it deserved, it wasn’t going to make it through until the end of time, which I would love for it to do.
I think for some people, that practice may not be yoga. It might be getting off your couch and taking a short walk. If that short walk was more than what you did yesterday, I can guarantee that the way that you feel after you get out and move your body and make a choice from a place of love and caring and compassion that it’s just going to be the first step, in the literal sense and figuratively speaking. That, for me, has evolved over many, many years. My yoga practice plays less of a role in my day to day life, but it was just for me, the beginning of many, many choices for reasons I had never given for myself, if that makes sense.
Leanne Vogel: More on my interview with Beth Manos Brickey after this message from one of our podcast partners.
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Now, that you’re more connected to your sacred self and you have that self care practice and more of that confidence and trust in your body, how does that translate to … You were saying that you started the keto diet a year ago. It sounds like you had a pretty good feeling of your body, and trust in your body, at that point. How did you approach keto in a way that honored your sacred self?
Beth Manos Brickey: That’s a good question. Man, when your book came out, I had already been experimenting with keto. I don’t remember, what month did your book come out?
Leanne Vogel: April. Yeah, April 2017.
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah. Up until April, I had obviously used all of your resources a lot for myself in terms of deciding where to start, what does it even mean to be keto and how strict do I have to be, and will it work if I do this or don’t do this? I was at the point where I was like am I doing this right? Then, your book came out and for me, it was that reassurance of there is no one right way to do it. I was already feeling that way, and I was already approaching it that way because that’s how I approach everything in life at this point, but I just decided. I went all in and I just thought I’m going to see how I feel. Whether it’s a new workout class, or new people you meet, or a new restaurant or new food, or whatever the thing is, for myself, this is my approach and I try to teach my readers this, and I try to teach and empower my nutrition clients this.
I think the best thing you have as a guide is your inner voice, your intuition, that sort of primal ability to know what’s best for us. Some days, I would go so low carb, and the next day I would feel horrible. It was about listening to my body and not some set of arbitrary rules that somebody else came up with is saying that I should do, if that makes sense. It was very much about making a move, quieting myself, my life, the world around me enough to listen to what my body was trying to tell me, and while I’m not a big tracker in the sense of how much of this, how much of that, I am very big on tracking my body’s response and how I feel emotionally, energetically, digestively. All of the things that could tell me the story that I need to know about how to proceed.
It’s weird because it’s like you can’t write blog posts about just listen to your body. It’s hard to explain that to people, but nothing in my life has given me more direction than just listening to myself.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah. I know for me when I was trying to learn how to listen to my body, it was a lot of journaling and writing. It’s not like you just sit there with your body and you have a full on conversation like, “What do you feel today? I’m not sure. What do you think?” It’s more I don’t know if spaghetti squash makes you bloated and uncomfortable, what’s that about? Was it something that you added with it? Was it something you combined with it, and that’s more what you mean by listening to your body, especially when you first get started. How did I feel today? Those sorts of questions. Is that right?
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah. I have an iPhone, probably like everybody else, and we all have the Notes app. If somebody were to look at my Notes app, I’m pretty sure they would think I was like a sociopath because there’s just random notes that are like you said. “White potato, super bloated.” Then underneath, it’ll be everything I ate with it, and then I’ll put another date of the next time I have white potato and see was it the white potato or was it the fact that I had 70,000 nightshades with it, additional. 100% it’s that level of journaling, so whether it’s on your phone, in a journal. Whether it’s about the brain fog aspect, or the digestive aspect. Whatever it is that you’re experiencing, I think the more you play and experiment, the more you see those subtle differences that make you get to be picky about your health, which I feel like is a blessing to be able to get to a point where you can be choosy and picky about this one thing made me feel this way and I don’t want to feel this way.
I deserve to feel better so what am I going to change about tomorrow so I don’t experience this again?
Leanne Vogel: Yes, totally. I totally agree with you. Keeping that at the forefront of honoring your sacred self, listening to your body, journaling, trying to understand what food does in your body, I’d love to run through a couple of keto diet “rules” or misconceptions, or diet dogma, and keeping that sacred self front of mind, how we would approach keto from a place of love and kindness. You’re cool with that?
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah.
Leanne Vogel: Awesome. Net carbs versus total carbs. When you first got started, and even now, what’s your stance on that? Do you care? Thoughts.
Beth Manos Brickey: For me personally, I use net carbs because having suffered with digestive issues and excessive gut bacteria, and all these different things, I noticed that I could easily, just from a standpoint of feeling satiated and what I love to eat, I could very easily go super duper, duper low carb. I’m a happy girl if I’ve got some quality meats, a lot of fat and good grains. That said, there are times that I know my gut is in need of more fiber. Fiber helps feed the good bacteria. It helps slow down the absorption of when you do include those carbohydrates, so for me, it’s the easiest approach to making sure that I’m not going so low carb that I’m actually missing important nutrients. I don’t count. I don’t go, “I just had this at this meal, and I had this,” and on my phone there’s not any documents where I’m tracking each of those things, but again, it’s like doing it, seeing how I feel when I go a little more or a little less. Yeah.
Leanne Vogel: Cool. How do you feel about eating too much fat versus not enough fat? I know that you wrote a post recently on all the different types of fat and the benefits of each one, which was awesome, but how do you feel … You mentioned earlier tracking your food isn’t really your jam. I don’t like it either. How do you know where your happy place is with fat if you don’t track it?
Beth Manos Brickey: In the last couple years as my health has improved, I’ve shifted away from an every morning Vinyasa or Chandra yoga practice to now going to the gym and lifting weights and swinging kettle bells and working out with a trainer. I do that usually five to six days a week. I’m not saying that that is necessary to eating this way, but for me, it’s actually one of the best forms of feedback I have in my life because it’s the constant. Every day at work, whether you work from home or go to a job, every thing’s a little bit different. When I go to the gym, obviously my workouts vary, but it’s the one time of day, every day, around the same time that I’m exerting a substantial amount of energy.
For me, it’s a really good way to be like okay, once again, if I’m having a week where I’m journaling or tracking what I’m eating, if I have a workout where I’m like man, I crashed hard in the middle, I can look back and go, “Oh, you know what? Yesterday, I really didn’t eat a lot of fat.” Or, “I haven’t carbed up in a while. I think it’s maybe time I experiment with that.” In terms of fat specifically, I think it’s just about how my workouts suffer, how my energy is doing, and then, in addition to that really wonderful feedback, something else that I’ve noticed since going keto that’s been amazing feedback is the clear-headed-ness, the ability to really focus in my work day.
Again, I don’t know if that’s is there enough fat, is there not enough fat, how low am I in glucose storage right now, or whatever, but it’s again, another really great feedback where if I’m having a day where I’m not able to focus, or I’m having a problem with word recall or brain fog or energy, again, I just look back and see what I did the day before and make some tweaks, and to be fully honest, it’s not the same every week. Some weeks I find, based on my life and what I have going on and just maybe hormones. There’s some weeks that I’m like man, I need a lot more fat this week. Then, that shifts the next week. It’s nice to be not strict to where I can be open and shift with what my body needs in the moment.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, and I love that you’re talking about the feedback that your body’s giving you. I have very strong feedbacks, acne being one of them. If I do an incorrect thing for my body, it’s like instantly I get acne.
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah, I get a little of that and man oh man, when you bring vanity into it, that’ll make you change things real … I don’t want more zits so whatever I did yesterday, I’m not doing it again.
Leanne Vogel: Totally. Another one is my bowel movements. I know if I’ve had too much fat, not enough fat, had not enough to eat, or stressed or whatever. I can really tell with that, too. Like you said, just certain feedbacks that certain people have, it’s probably different for everyone, but some ideas on what to watch for.
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah. I would definitely say that in terms of too much fat, it’s easy in terms for me of those different feedbacks that I’ve talked about, being able to be like well, I definitely didn’t eat enough fat, but for sure, I would say bowel movements for too much fat. That, or I’m very aware from going through the nutritional therapy program and learning how to actually palpate the gallbladder, I’m very aware of where my gallbladder in my body is. There are times that I’m like oh, I did, I went too far because my gallbladder’s just hurting. It just hurts. It’s too much. Or, you have that explosive moment where your body’s like what’d you do? What’d you do?
Usually, it’s MCT, liquid MCT oil on an empty stomach when I haven’t been nice to my body. That’s usually great feedback for a little too much this morning, Beth. You went too far.
Leanne Vogel: Have you tried MCT oil powder? You have, right?
Beth Manos Brickey: Oh girl. I’m obsessed with that.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, it’s so much better. I will never have the regular oil again.
Beth Manos Brickey: I know. I bounce back and forth just because sometimes I run out of the powder and I’ll have the oil here. I don’t know if this has been your experience with the liquid, but it’s like just when I’m like all right, we’re into it, we’ve got a good vibe. We’re doing good with the MCT oil. Then, I’ll have a day out of nowhere where, speaking of tracking and feedback, where nothing is different. Everything’s exactly the same. I’ll have a boosted coffee. I’ll put the liquid oil and I’m like okay, I guess I’m not going anywhere this morning for at least the next hour because I’ll be in the bathroom six times. I don’t like that gamble.
Leanne Vogel: Totally. I have never experienced that but Kevin does. My husband.
Beth Manos Brickey: Does he?
Leanne Vogel: Oh yeah. Can’t even do MCT oil anymore. Even the look of it when I pour it into something, he’s like, “Oh, I can’t do it.” Yeah, totally. It can get frustrating when you are relying on your body for those feedbacks and you’ve done everything similar and then there’s just a different day. Like you said, where I did exactly the same thing yesterday but now today, I’m sitting on the toilet six times in the morning. How do you approach that when it’s been the same, the same, the same and then something changes clearly, but you can’t pinpoint what that was?
Beth Manos Brickey: That’s a really good question. If it’s a one time thing, I’ll take it with a grain of salt and just be like there’s so many factors. I also try to remember that even when we might … Getting back to what I was speaking about earlier when my naturopathic doctor asked me if I was stressed, and the answer was no, and it was no until it was yeah, you’re right. I’m stressed. I didn’t even realize how stressed I am. I think a lot of times we tell ourselves stories of how things are versus how they really are. I think we forget that stress in the body may be very, very obvious to us like a really horrible drive home because everyone’s tailing you and beeping at you and driving like maniacs where you and your partner get into an argument. You’re very acutely aware that there’s stress.
I think sometimes there’s stress in our life that we’re not acknowledging. Whether it’s an internal stress of putting something in our body we don’t know our body doesn’t want, whether it’s working out too hard, which even though it doesn’t feel stressful to you mentally, it may be stressing your nervous system in a way, or travel, and how maybe two or three days after you’ve flown home from a long flight, your body’s still experiencing an internal stressor. I think when our body’s in that fight or flight mode of stress, our digestion doesn’t work the same way as it does when we’re relaxed. I think knowing, again, I feel very fortunate to have gone through a nutrition program and have learned so, so much about my body that sometimes I just think you know what? Throw your hands up in the air and know that something’s going on and maybe it just means I need to relax today more than I would have yesterday. Or, find extra space or time to take care of myself.
Yeah, I try to not be quite so literal and always just look at those meals or every little thing as the same as it was yesterday because it really never is.
Leanne Vogel: Yes, totally. Chatting about feedbacks, too, how do you know when you’re hungry? That’s a question I get a lot. As somebody who’s been listening to their body for quite sometime, it’s become quite easy for me to be like I’m hungry now. I will eat. Did you ever that experience of not really knowing when you’re hungry, when you should eat, when you shouldn’t eat and also, how that intertwines with your fasting practice, if you’ve practiced intermittent fasting?
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah. I do, actually, and it’s interesting because I think a lot of people that have never experimented with fasting or compressed eating windows would probably look at it like it feels very restricting and it’s like oh, but you can only eat between these certain hours. I’ve never, ever, ever in my life felt more free in terms of food than I do when I’m fasting because it’s not about, “Oh, it’s this time. This is the time we eat this meal and now I have to figure out what I’m going to make for this meal because it’s time to do this thing that I’ve been told for all of my life I’m supposed to do right now.” I think when I first started experiencing true hunger versus that idea of mentally attached to a time of eating, it was pretty amazing because I’m like I’m actually hungry. I want to put food in my body because I feel like its time to put fuel in the engine, if that makes sense.
I think that what that is for everybody may be different. Whether it’s you actually feel an energy depletion, you start to notice that cognitively you’re not as focused, or true stomach grumbling. I think that those signs are maybe different for everybody, but I think, again, shutting out external ideas and noise and just tapping into knowing what your body needs, I just find it to be so much easier to be like it’s time for a meal because I feel this way. I eat for energy. I love food as much as I ever have, and I have a website full of recipes that I love creating, but I think stepping away and being like I’m eating in this moment because my body needs it, it’s just so free. It’s so incredible.
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Are there ever times where you jump on social media, or you’re out with friends who might be eating keto, or otherwise, and then you play the comparing game and you forget everything that you’ve learnt over the years and just be like why aren’t I doing that or I should be doing this, or I should be doing that better? If so, how do you handle that?
Beth Manos Brickey: I don’t know that I compare like I should be doing this or I should be doing that, but there are times that I think … Perfect example is I was in Mexico. I don’t know if that was last week or the week before for the American Thanksgiving. We were in Mexico, and there was a bunch of staying in a house, and if I was at home and it was a normal weekday, I would get up. I would have a lot of water and then I would have my coffee when I was ready, and boost it in whatever way I was boosting it that way and then I would go to the gym, workout and then based on my energy and how hungry I am and how my workout was, eat right away or give myself a little bit more time.
When I travel, and I’m somewhere with other people, and part of the experience of being with people and part of the connection and being together in that moment is a meal, I have … I don’t want to say guilt because I definitely never attach guilt to food and eating but it’s like I have this slight internal struggle where I think I don’t really want to eat right now. I don’t want to eat because I don’t need to eat. I’d like to continue fasting. I feel better when I do that, but there’s 12 people in this rented house on the beach in Mexico and we’re overlooking the ocean. We’re all having this beautiful Mexican breakfast that somebody took the time to cook. There’s so much love in food, and there’s so much love in somebody creating food for you and there’s so much emotion in sitting with people and connecting in that way that I have that struggle for a moment, and then I think who cares? It’s one day. It’s one meal. I’m going to eat this meal, and maybe I’ll eat three meals today instead of two or whatever it is, and I just let myself have that experience.
In terms of looking at what other people are doing online and thinking I should be doing it differently, I generally just look at everybody in a way … It’s just like I was saying about experimenting with fasting and feeling more free than ever. I feel like learning that there is no one answer for every person and everybody, I now look at everybody and I just think, “Oh, that’s great for her if it works like that. I couldn’t do that.” Maybe sometimes I wish I could, but generally I think that’s amazing that that works for her, or him, or whoever it is. I just keep doing what feels good for me. You know?
Leanne Vogel: Also, patience with your body, too. If you’re coming from a place … I know that when I didn’t have a period, for example, it was really hard to watch other women do things that I just couldn’t do because I was still healing and being patient with my body. I think that there will always be people … I know that there’s still times, I call it the 3 o’clock comparison hour, where at 3 o’clock when I’ve had a really long day, I just end up finding myself on … It was really big back when there weren’t a lot of food blogs, like you were saying, back in 2012 checking out everyone’s blog. Why aren’t they doing that? How come they’re doing this? That whole thing, and I think when we’re on an eating style regimen, or something, and we’re trying to heal our bodies, often times we get caught up in, “Well, she was able to lose 30 pounds and I’m only at 15. What’s wrong with me? I need to work harder.” I think that your answer is wonderful to help people through that for sure.
Beth Manos Brickey: Well, and I think it’s an age old thing, and I often use it in different ways, but it’s like the idea that comparison is the thief of joy. There really couldn’t be a more beautiful quote because it’s the moment that you … Whether it’s diet and eating and food, or looks, or body type, hair color. You name it, we could compare ourselves. I think that you stop once again making choices for yourself from a place of love and rather you’re making them because you feel inadequate, or you feel less than, or you don’t feel worthy. I think that it just becomes less important to listen to yourself and more important to try and keep up with somebody else. That’s when things go … I look at myself and all the years that I used to diet this way and count calories, count points, do all of these things that all that was happening is that I didn’t believe I was good enough where I was at and I also wanted to be something that I wasn’t and I was making choices from the wrong place.
I’d like to think many of us are smart enough to realize that a lot of what people put out into the world, especially with social media, is highly curated. They’re sharing the parts of themselves that they most want you to see. If we continue to compare ourselves to what is maybe a projection of an actual human being, it’s just going to lead to always feeling inadequate. It’s never going to go well.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, perfect. What would you recommend to somebody who isn’t as confident or is just starting out in developing an individualized approach? We chatted about the comparison piece, but if somebody listening is like wow, okay, sacred self, trusting my body, I think I’m ready for this, but I’m terrified. What would you tell them?
Beth Manos Brickey: Well, I think first of all, as somebody who has long struggled with fear in every different capacity, from a very tangible like being afraid of heights, or being afraid of not being good enough, or whatever emotion you want to attach it to, or moment you want to attach it to. I can only say this from experience, so you have to trust in this idea but I think that everything that you want is always on the other side of your fears, and I think there’s a reason we’re afraid of things. It’s almost like we know deep down that once we move past this thing that’s super scary, there’s something even better but you have to go through the weeds and the woods to find that beauty.
I would say honor that you’re afraid and don’t pretend it’s not happening, and don’t ignore that fear, but just also know that pushing through sometimes in a comfortable place, and whatever that means for you, is part of the process and that’s where you learn. That’s where you learn what is going to work for you and what isn’t going to work for you. I think it’s really hard because I think the idea of eating intuitively and living intuitively, and tapping in to your inner voice and this idea of sacred self, it’s a really hard practice to … I don’t want say teach, but to teach or to share, or to bring other people into because it’s so individualistic. It’s as unique to you, and the process of it is as unique to you as your fingerprints are.
For me, it’s like I can’t say the best thing you could do is go to a yoga class because in a yoga class, this thing’s going to happen and tomorrow, everything’s going to be better. Like I was saying earlier, it could be a short walk. I think the idea of baby steps, and doing a little something that maybe feels out of your comfort zone, feels a little scary to you, honoring that, living with it for a moment and seeing how you do and maybe push it a little further and try something a little scarier tomorrow. Whether we’re talking about your diet, or something else in life, I think it’s about just know where you’re at in your journey and proceeding appropriately.
Leanne Vogel: Completely. Would you feel the same way about the fear of making a mistake? I know that I hear from a lot of people that are ready to start trusting their body a little bit more, but they’re a little bit terrified that, for example, carb ups. That they’re going to try carb ups and the first night, they’re going to pound 500 grams of carbs and totally screw up and be back at square one, which isn’t really possible, but we won’t even go there today. Just chat about the mistakes. Are you ever paralyzed or how do you handle the fear of mistakes? Do you have a fear of mistakes?
Beth Manos Brickey: Yeah, I don’t know that anybody doesn’t struggle with that on some level at any given time. I probably would say just given the random year I’ve had of pushing myself past my comfort, it’s getting easier for me, but it’s like anything. It’s just a practice of pushing and pushing and trying and not being afraid. I’ve just gotten to this point where there’s so much crazy stuff happening in the world, and there’s so many people struggling with so many things, and when I look at if I carb up tonight, what’s going to happen? I just always tell myself what’s the worst thing that can happen? The best thing is is that I realize it’s exactly what my body needed. The worst thing that could happen is I feel like crap and I know that I made a mistake. Probably a really good example of this for me is that over the summer, I would say I would six or seven months in to being keto, and following it pretty … I don’t want to say strictly because it feels like there’s rules, but for me, I had it dialed in.
I wasn’t eating very many carbs. I knew when I needed to. I knew what kind of carbs. I went to Yosemite for a week long camping trip. It was a fitness based camping trip. We did so many epic hikes. One of them was 22 miles. We were on the trails for 14 hours. This was the second hike. The first hike of the week was about a 10 mile hike but it was in the middle of the hot summer day and very, very steep incline. It was like the second day of us being in Yosemite, so leading up to that moment, I had been at home eating very strictly keto, very low carb. Practicing carb ups now and again, but not too often at that point because I just felt so good. I guess that would have been a moment where I was a little bit fearful of I feel so good, why would I do something that would ruin that?
We go on this hike, and obviously we’re on the trails all day, and I packed my backpack with trail snacks, and we packed lunches. We had gluten-free bread and everybody made different sandwiches with gluten-free bread or not, and I was like I’m not going to make a sandwich. I don’t really eat bread. I just took lettuce and rolled up some of the lunch meat and packed all my other trail snacks that were all keto-friendly. Before we even hit the middle point, which was the top of the peak to turn around, I would say maybe halfway up our going up, I was crashing, and I was crashing in a way that I’d never really experienced because I’ve never really done hikes at this level. I’ve definitely never done anything this strenuous since going keto. I was crashing and I was like I don’t know what’s going on. I am in great shape. I workout five to six days a week. This shouldn’t be happening.
My trainer’s like you got this. You have to push through. I’m like no, no. I don’t need a pep talk. This isn’t mental. I can physically feel my body failing me right now. I don’t have the energy and I don’t know what to do. We got up to the top of the mountain and everyone’s having lunch, and I’m eating my lettuce wrapped lunch meat, and I just had this moment of “You dummy!” You were so worried about the fear of if I eat carbs today, what’s that going to do to the practice that I’ve been doing for the last seven months. How could I call myself a dummy? I didn’t know until this moment, but I realized in that moment I’m like I have to be flexible with this because if I’m not flexible with it, it’s like any other thing in the world, I’m not going to be able to make this a long-term lifestyle, and it’ll just become this thing that only works in certain times or that I go to and go away from and come back to.
I think that’s probably a really good example of what you’re talking about. The rest of the trip, it was almost fun. I’m like so apparently my body needs some carbs right now. I was eating popcorn, and having sandwiches on real bread and taking 22 mile hikes for 14 hours and doing some of the most gnarly stuff I’ve ever done in my life. My energy level was exactly where I needed it to be, if not higher. It was a beautiful reminder of you got to be flexible and listen to your body.
Leanne Vogel: That’s amazing. That’s a perfect story. That was perfect. Perfect. Okay, my last question for you … Well, my second to last. What do you feel is missing in the keto space for women? I like to ask all my guests that.
Beth Manos Brickey: That’s a hard thing to answer because I’m not very super, deeply rooted in the keto world in terms of really diving deeply into the community. That said, I’ve read a lot of books and listened to a lot of podcasts. I promise I’m not sucking up, because I’m already on your podcast. I feel like everything that I could say was missing until your book came out, or would for most people, they might find is missing, I feel like you cover in your book because I feel like you honor the idea of approach what works for you. While you give people the options for a more strict counting approach, you also offer let’s just talk about being fat fueled and understand that that’s still making major progress for your body and your health.
Yeah, there’s nothing I could think of. I guess just more of you. More people like you. More of you being out there, more of getting your word and your approach into the hands of women because a lot of women that have come to me and been like, “Oh, I know about keto.” They’re telling me all about it, and I ask how are your hormones? Are you practicing any carb ups? Have you experienced any of these symptoms that we all know to be related to somebody that’s maybe gone too low carb and has hormone imbalances, and they’re like what are you talking about? I’ve never heard of that. Then I realized that there’s just not enough people talking about it. Maybe just more voices, I guess.
Leanne Vogel: Yeah, cool. I love it. Thank you so much, Beth. That’s awesome. Thank you. Where can people find you?
Beth Manos Brickey: You can find me. My website, with all of my recipes and all of my different content is Tasty Yummies. It’s Tasty-Yummies.com, and on all social media, I’m at TastyYummies, so two Y’s in the middle.
Leanne Vogel: Love it. Awesome. Thanks, Beth. You rock. The show notes and full transcript for today’s episode can be found at HealthfulPursuit.com/Podcast/E66. Thanks so much for coming on the show today.
Beth Manos Brickey: Thank you, Leanne. It was my pleasure.
Leanne Vogel: That does it for another episode of The Keto Diet Podcast. Thanks for listening in. You can follow me on Instagram by searching Healthful Pursuit where you’ll find daily keto eats and other fun things. Check out all of my keto supportive programs, bundles, guides and other cool things over at HealthfulPursuit.com/shop. I’ll see you next Sunday. Bye.