CC 053 – Humans, Mushrooms, and Cannabinoids with Danielle Broida
Joe: [00:08] Alright, I am sitting here with my friend of now a year – how long has it been?
Danielle: [00:13] Like almost 2 years.
Joe: [00:14] Almost 2 years. We go way back.
Danielle: [00:16] Oh yeah.
Joe: [00:17] Danielle. And if you have listened to several episodes of this podcast, you heard her… probably about 6 months ago. We dove into all things mushrooms. Now we’re here for a round 2, to freestyle, but to discuss how we’re showing up in the world as human beings that are on a mission, and as a representative of Four Sigmatic and an amazing herbalist and person, and then human being that aligns very much with what Cured is trying to do, we had to record another podcast.
Danielle: [00:54] We had to.
Joe: [00:55] Because we didn’t cover it all. So, how you doing?
Danielle: [00:59] I’m doing good. It’s so good to be here and jumping in, and I’m always amazed how much we’re constantly aligned.
Joe: [01:05] Yeah.
Danielle: [01:06] What we’re doing and creating, and the things we’re thinking about.
Joe: [01:10] Yeah. You just got back from a connection – reconnection with self, I should say – but a connection with the earth and some traveling.
Danielle: [01:18] Big time. I took a sailboat from Panama City to Colombia, and it’s just so wild. We talk about wellness all the time and are committed to that in our work, and yet it was such an eye-opening experience to have wellness that was totally disconnected, and wellness took on a completely different meaning. Where so much of the daily grind, especially when we’re passionate about what we’re doing, is constantly making lists and preparing and checking things off, and it just showed me that wellness is so much more than a checklist. It’s unwinding, it’s unplugging, it’s being still, and it’s allowing magic guide universe to kind of come in, and when we’re so tightly holding on to what’s next and what we’re doing, there’s really not a lot of room for flow. So, I just saw that… I had no plans everyday, and the most amazing things appeared because I had – was open to all the magic of it.
Joe: [02:23] For 2 weeks.
Danielle: [02:25] For 2 weeks.
Joe: [02:26] It’s so true though. I think… I would look at you, and although you are the national educator for Four Sigmatic, I think whenever you work for what we would call a small business, you know, you said there’s 30-some employees there and we have 10 here at Cured, every single person there is an entrepreneur. It’s not just the people that started the company. But this space of being an entrepreneur and wanting to have an impact and having a very, very strong drive to have your mission come to fruition, it’s hard to shut off, and it’s really easy to fall into that pattern of do, do, do, do, do, do, do, and we live in this world of interconnectedness. I heard somebody say this on a podcast the other day – they’re like, they were talking about business hours and internet hours, and well, our business hours are our internet hours because it never shuts off.
Danielle: [03:32] Literally.
Joe: [03:33] And I am spending a couple of days in Joshua Tree next week, but last year I spent – or it was actually two years ago now – 5 days in Tulum, completely shut off, and I came back a completely new person. Because I was reconnecting to myself and who I am as a human being, but who we are as a race, and as a community, and as a collective, and that idea is really… what makes me wake up in the morning, because I – and I’m telling this story more and more – but I came from Lockheed Martin. I was a engineer, and there was this time where weed became, marijuana became legal in Colorado. I had been a user of cannabis beforehand, but I was a new employee there and it became legalized, and I was listening to the conversations over the cubicle wall, and I would hear some people say oh yeah, I used it all the time, it’s fine, and then other people have this massive misunderstanding and still live very deeply in the stigma around it. And I was just sitting there thinking like… I shouldn’t be nervous to say that I use cannabis and I believe in it and it’s helped me. It’s helped calm me, it’s helped me in times where I’ve needed to use it for its anti-inflammatory properties from a pain standpoint. And I was just sitting there, and this is just the specific example around marijuana, but I was like, that idea that I’m nervous to speak up about it is wrong, and that’s really what the underlying message that drives Cured, and I know that you, as a clinical herbalist, it’s this connection to – yes, ourselves – but this connection to nature that we know to be capital ‘T’ truth. And we have a battle that we’re – I shouldn’t say battle, I’m trying to get a lot better with my words – but we have this impact and this mission that needs to be heard from a very grounded, intelligent, but curious standpoint as to why did we end up where we are now, and why are more people sick, and why is what’s going on with our food system going on. That’s why we’re sitting down here once again today to talk about how do we show up in our daily routines as human beings and connect to nature, and we’re going to talk about functional mushrooms and herbs and cannabinoids. But, I just sit back and I’m like wow… how did we get here, and there’s so much noise, and it takes a community of people to make a shift here. So, that’s why we always sit down together and we’re like, oh, we’re in exact alignment, because we have this idea that I don’t think that the way that humans were on a path for so long, I don’t think it’s correct.
Danielle: [06:45] Yeah, and I think that’s something when we get out of our daily grind and our daily bubble that we’re really reminded of. For me especially, leaving the country, we have this set of standards here where the more you perform, the more you work, the more you do, the better you are. It’s this better, better, better. I’m thinking of it in terms of the Ayurvedic doshas. We can talk about this a little bit too and how interconnected that is with our body types and choosing the right herbs and food and nutrition for who we are as humans, but in Ayurveda – in all traditional cultures – there’s not one thing for every person. It’s what is your body like, are you naturally hot, are you cold, are you more moist, are you dryer, what is your climate in and how does that affect your body. I connect so much with Ayurveda because I lived in India for so long, but it’s these 3 doshas, and they align with the elements. You have Pitta, which is the fire, which is exactly the highest standard in America. It’s like, Pitta is the better. You’re on fire, you’re working, you’re so much energy, like that is our gold standard. So, Pitta’s one. Then, there’s Vata, which is the air element, and Kapha, which is the earth element. In India, Kapha is like the gold standard. The more chill you can be, the more grounded, the more you can sit in your meditation, that’s what they’re all going for. So, it shows, you know, what are our standards and where are we living, and when we can break out of that, go to another – sometimes it’s only Joshua Tree. Sometimes-
Josh: [08:26] I’m hoping so! That’s what we’re going for next week.
Danielle: [08:30] Yeah. But out of the country, out of whatever box you’re in, to really realize ok, the way I’m performing, is that truly aligned with your own goals, or is it just this is what we’re told is right. But, is that truly sustainable, and how can we look back inwards to our own bodies and think about how we’re nourishing ourselves, how we’re showing up, and not fall into the systems of pressure and the more you do the better you are, but… I guess, realigning your values. That was something I did on this, talking about having this space to think, to wonder. I just wondered so much. Like, I just feel like that’s such a lost art.
Joe: [09:16] Wander and wonder. That’s great.
Danielle: [09:18] Yeah, but seriously. With Google and Alexa and Siri, we just don’t need to wonder very much. Someone asks a question you don’t know – hey Siri, what’s the capital of this? And to not be able to have those answers, it was a lot of time to wonder.
Joe: [09:36] I just got Alexa, and I’m not too fond.
Danielle: [09:39] It’s a very weird relationship.
Joe: [09:42] It is! It is. It sometimes – I’ll like, hey Alexa, will you turn the lights off, will you turn the thermostat – I’m like ok, well, I’m just being lazy, and I need to get up and do that. Yeah, that’s a whole other conversation, but… it’s… what I feel here as an underlying theme is us reconnecting to our roots and understanding who we are as human beings, and what we need to do every single day. That’s what we really wanted to sit down here and talk about, is like ok, so given everything that we just said, are we just going to wake up tomorrow in America and drop everything and just go meditate? Well, no.
Danielle: [10:29] Absolutely not.
Joe: [10:30] So, we need to – we have to understand that we live in a society that has standards and ideas and rules, and things that, ok, you’re going to have to do, and the daily… I don’t want to say daily dose ‘cause that’s what we’re going towards with Cured, but like the daily routine is so important; and that’s what we at Cured have recognized, and I know Four Sigmatic is doing the same thing, in that one, let’s simplify it. We have these aspects of our day, and here at Cured we’re coming out with this perform-balance-recover idea, and there are things that we have to do in each of those buckets to show up as a human being, to show up at work, to actually find time to relax and connect with ourselves, and then to hit the reset button and do it all again. You know, that’s just the nature of being a human being in today’s world, and we have to figure out how we’re gonna make some income to support ourselves and to feed those that depend on us. Then, the wellness piece that you’ve touched on is such an important piece of all this that kind of trickles through each aspect in that we actually gotta take care of ourselves and we have to put the correct things in our body, and unfortunately right now, a lot of the food that we eat is not covering all our bases. So, how do we find the herbs, the mushrooms, the products that fit in each aspect of our day to help us show up in our best self? I wanted to go through the idea, and we can name these whatever we want because I know you’re of the same mindset, but let’s start with this idea of like performing, and showing up in a way where we need to sit down and write a paper, we need to show up at work, or we’re going to give a speech, or we’re going to go play sports. How do we look at – and I might get this wrong – but when we’re talking actions and energetics, so we would be talking about energetics specifically. What energetics would we be going for, obviously in the perform aspect, and what mushrooms and herbs are we looking at, and what do they do? Let’s talk about that bucket.
Danielle: [13:16] Yeah. So, I guess I just want to preface it by there are so many times where we need to more immediately perform a certain action just like you said. We need to be on point for whatever it is we’re showing up as, and I think we’ve blown that out of proportion a little bit as a society, where we try to perform all the time. So, before we jump into specific herbs, I just want to lay the platform that this is in – the allies that we’re going to be diving into, whether it’s lion’s mane, and rhodiola, and some of our amazing adaptogens that we know and love that really do help with that acute performance – they’re there as tools to help you when you need them, but it’s just one piece of the picture, and it’s not sustainable to continually try perform at all hours of the day. When we’re-
Joe: [14:06] I like it. That’s really important!
Danielle: [14:09] Yeah. And going back to our roots – and we’ll talk about these other buckets as well – but we can use these little tricks to perform, and I think we need that, just as you said, the way we’re nourishing ourselves isn’t allowing us to perform in the way that – whether we expect of ourselves or society expects of us, whether it’s a lack of sleep or nutrients. Our food is not the same as it once was, and our soil isn’t the same as it once was, so we’re deficient in critical minerals that our body needs to function optimally. So, we do often need something to turn to that’s natural, that isn’t going to be addictive, and there’s where adaptogens come in that can help us really acutely in the moment; but just know that these are to help you when you need them, not to become… like, there’s so many things that we become reliant on.
Joe: [15:02] I got a quick story.
Danielle: [15:03] Please.
Joe: [15:04] I was out at the Alchemist Kitchen for that event just recently, and I went out to dinner afterwards and I sat down with a girl that has been helping us do business development and her boyfriend, who’s a lawyer, and to touch on your point of we don’t need to perform at all aspects of the day, he asked me, “Have people been reporting getting angry after taking Rise?” And I was like, “What?” and he goes, “Well, you know, I usually take 2 in the morning, and then 2 midday, and then 2 at night.” And I was like, well, it says take 3 at a time, take 1-3, and what you’re doing is you’re just literally filling your whole day and you’re taxing your body. So, no, nobody’s reported that, but makes sense to me that that might happen because you’re trying to perform at all aspects of the day, and that’s not what we’re meant to do. So, the idea of the herbs and mushrooms that can be used for this, and the understanding that there are specific times that it needs to be done, and there’s a limit to how much you can use them is really important. Talking to that guy I was like oh my gosh… of course!
Danielle: [16:20] It’s crazy. I’m thinking about – yeah, I mean, I just got home late last night from a lot of travels and 5 different planes, so it’s the idea of when you’re so pushed your body too far, and you’re really exhausted, whether it’s mentally or physically, and then you try to do more. It’s the same thing like being under rested. Think about being malnourished. It’s not malnourished and you’re not getting food, it’s that you’re not eating foods that are sufficient in the nutrients and minerals and vitamins that your body needs to truly function. So, when we talk about perform, it’s yeah, here’s something that can assist you, and almost elevate already ideally a strong foundation. Like, we’re not trying to put band-aids on anything, but really know that ok, there’s – we want to build the foundation of all of us so that we can not need anything, but just have tools as like, ok, this is something in my tool chest when I occasionally really need to go crush it in whatever it is. But, I guess constantly I’m trying to think about the whole picture and knowing that you gotta prepare to be able to perform, to be able to unwind and do it again, and it’s this cyclical thing. And that’s what I think is this beautiful shift that we’re both so excited about aligning and helping people find times of day to do all of these different things, that it isn’t just we have this one product or this one mushroom that we’ve discovered that’s going to help you perform all the time. It’s like, oh, we really are realizing the need for holistic wellness, and no matter how amazing products are across the board, there’s gotta be a really specific use case and people understanding the why, and believing and feeling the way that it’s shifting and supporting their system so that they can do it long term.
Joe: [18:17] Yeah. Don’t tax the system because we’re all going to run out of fuel at some point.
Danielle: [18:20] Totally.
Joe: [18:21] So, if we’re thinking about the showing up, we need to show up. What are we looking to? And then – you can answer this in any way you want, and try to stay in this bucket – but do some of these show up in each? Are there like – which is interesting because when we talk about cannabinoids, when we look at different dosage, so CBD at lower dosages, some people tend to say it’s stimulating, but then at higher dosages, it’s more about relaxing and calming. When we talk about mushrooms specifically, then we can talk about herbs as well, which ones are we talking about, and do you see them show up in the other lanes, I guess I should say.
Danielle: [19:09] Yeah. So, we’re talking – I think we’re mostly talking about adaptogens. When we talk about all natural medicine, whether it’s a mushroom, an herb, there’s going to be a slightly different effect in everybody that takes it, and that’s where a lot of the beauty comes in.
Joe: [19:27] That’s not the answer people want.
Danielle: [19:29] No, it’s definitely not the answer, but we can be bumpers, we can be guidelines, especially representing brands, of this is the general guideline, but know that they’re bumpers and your body is going to be totally different than someone else’s, and at changing times too. This is something that’s so cool about adaptogens, is that they’re able to shift absolutely among these different categories. Sometimes, I mean, it sounds really bizarre to someone, like within Four Sigmatic we call reishi our chill mushroom, but sometimes if you really need to show up and have an epic morning the next day, like I would say take reishi the night before so you get a really good night’s sleep, so you become nourished, and you are relaxed, and your body unwinds fully, so that you can naturally show up energized and ready to go without needing to then take a bunch of lion’s mane in the morning to almost just have a quick fix. So, they’re totally bleeding into one another. I love this idea that you keep bringing up, the roots, because that is so my belief as an herbalist, is I have so many people be like this is what’s going on, you know, come in my office and this is my symptom, I want to focus better. And I’m like cool, we’re going to give you a lot of magnesium. They’re like, what do you mean, doesn’t that-
Joe: [20:55] Before I go to bed?
Danielle: [20:56] Does it make me chill or poop or what? Everything’s [inaudible]. It’s like ok, how can we truly nourish the body, like continue to nourish the roots. And we can do that in all of these categories, but what we’re really talking about is long term solutions to nourish the system to build the system. Even the allies that we’re going to use in the perform category – so, like lion’s mane being our aligned example of focus and concentration, memory – even that is building to the system. It’s not something like, I don’t know, any other – like, what do people usually use for focus?
Joe: [21:39] I mean, people use a lot of caffeine.
Danielle: [21:41] Yeah! Totally.
Joe: [21:43] Like energy drinks. And I wouldn’t say that’s necessarily like it’s giving you the cognitive enhancement that you’re actually looking for, but I mean, energy drinks are rampant.
Danielle: [21:53] Yeah, absolutely. So, how can we replace? That’s another huge thing here too. How can we replace the habits that we already have with healthier habits that are truly going to support our longevity throughout all these different categories, this holistic picture of the body? Yeah, it’s isn’t just let me do this one thing real quick, let me boost myself up with a bunch of caffeine. It’s not just how am I going to be able to focus today but also how am I going to be able to focus in 10 years. I think so many of us are on this short-term path of I just need to do this, and we’re starting to realize – I’m talking to more and more people that are like the way that I thought I had to go about things, it’s not working, and I’m still stressed, and I’m really anxious, and there’s gotta be another way, and so we’re looking to alternatives – things like CBD, acupuncture, yoga, meditation, natural medicine. Like what are other ways that I can still perform when I’m 65, and want to go on a sailing trip when I’m 65, and not just show up and do a really good job in this interview or whatever is coming up in the next hour short-term.
Joe: [23:09] Yeah. Zooming out. Zooming out and looking at the whole picture. I was in a yoga class recently, and the teacher was basically talking, she was like I’ve had a really, really tough last couple days like really bad, and I’m not doing well; but I’m now trying to be more of the observer, and zoom out and recognize that ok, well, I went through this couple shitty days, these couple terrible days, and I felt this lowness, but now, today, I feel the other end of it and now I can zoom out and look at ok, well, I went through this experience, and on the macro, like I needed to do that. And that’s exactly what’s going on here, is we can drive ourselves to the ground in a single day, and then it’s going to affect us day after day after day; whereas, we can also prepare every single day, we can show up and we can eat the right foods, we can drink the right amount of water, we can take the right supplements, and then we’re going to be able to sustain whatever it is we’re doing over time. So, I keep trying to come back to that zoomed out view of like what is this life, and what are we doing as these creatures on this ball spinning through space just trying to figure it out.
Danielle: [24:34] Yeah, absolutely. It’s just so – I keep bringing – I’m just so fresh off the boat, literally, of travel. But that’s the zoomed out perspective that I just, like, there’s no words to describe how nourishing and healing and healthy it is to see how many people live their lives in different ways. Whether it’s being a beggar on the street or, I mean, anyone you look at working so hard, like selling their random goods on the sidewalk. There’s just so many levels of existing, and we’re – there’s a lot of pressure in our country, and we put a lot of pressure on ourselves in our workplace to be on all the time, and burn out is a really real thing. And we’re realizing, one, exactly, starting to ask these questions – what is my purpose, what am I actually doing, what are my goals, what are my values, and how can we create balance, create systems in our life, choose the right things to nourish us that are going to make us want to wake up and be our best selves everyday.
Joe: [25:48] Lion’s mane – so you touched on it there for a second. Is it always giving the same effect? Is it dosage dependent? Is it person dependent? I think I’m now going to answer my own question, but I wanted to ask that because the CBD example of the different dosages, I keep coming back to that, and people have said that and asked that several times. So, lion’s mane for example.
Danielle: [26:15] Yeah. All the things that you said – is it dependent on x,y, or z – yes. I think the biggest point that I want to point out is there is a effective range of dosing. So, we talked in our last podcast about sourcing and making sure that what you’re actually getting is a fruiting body that’s been log-grown, that’s been extracted properly, and if we’re talking apples to apples in terms of that sort of quality of a product. Like 500mg is the minimum dose that I would suggest to really feel an effect. Sometimes you have to take it – some people I’ve talked to take it once and they feel it. Other people, you take it consistently in the morning or whatever time of day you’re trying to perform, and after 3 days, 5 days a week, then you start noticing the effects. And a lot of that has to do with what you’re combining it with. So, there’s this beautiful alchemy that happens, and depending on what you’re eating, or depending on what else is built into your supplement, the constituents of the lion’s mane are going to affect your body differently. There’s certain things that can enhance the constituents, so – can I even, if we have to cut this part out – like can I say the names of constituents? The erinacines and hericenones of the lion’s mane-
Joe: [27:37] You can same them. I can’t say them.
Danielle: [27:39] I don’t know if I can say them either. So, there’s certain other components, whether they’re other herbs or other vitamins, that will increase their ability to affect you in the moment or long-term. This is why you hear a lot about herbs that are high in Vitamin C increasing the bioavailability of certain compounds, so if you really want to have this immediate performance effect, I would suggest combining your lion’s mane with something like a citrus, or what we use a lot in Four Sigmatic products is rose hips because it’s really rich in Vitamin C.
Joe: [28:16] Interesting.
Danielle: [28:17] But, I mean, it’s the same thing when we’re – if you think of bullet coffee and how can the caffeine be most effective. People are realizing when you add fat into your caffeine, there’s going to be this slower release, versus if you take it black you get this spike and drop. Rather than… I think the better way to think about it is your body and what you’re combining it with, it’s this beautiful alchemy, and that’s why plants and natural medicine is so exciting to me. Because there’s endless opportunity to explore and it is, like we’re not going to have the same breakfast, or if we do, we might’ve ate something last night that’s a little different. So, there’s always going to be variability, and that’s where there’s so much magic that takes place. Versus so many other compounds where it’s like I’m isolating this one specific compound to have the exact same effect in everybody at every time of day no matter when it’s taken.
Joe: [29:15] I’m glad that you said that. That’s my big… the big thing that I hate about the CBD industry and that we also see as an issue with opiates. The poppy is actually a beautiful plant, and the opiate is an isolated component of the plant. So, when we look at cannabis and we isolate CBD, we isolate THC, all the other cannabinoids, I’m not going to sit here and confidently say that that’s not right, but I firmly believe that processing things down to just one single compound, I believe that that’s completely wiping away the beautiful alchemy that you’re saying of the entire plant as it’s meant to be in its natural form. It makes sense that ok, well you can take things in more of an isolated version, but to get the full effects or the best effects, it is beneficial to combine them with other things. I was curious when I first took – the first couple times I took psilocybin, we – I can’t remember who I was with, but they’re like oh, you should take some Vitamin C… because it would increase the visuals is what we were saying. Is that just because it’s actually helping you just absorb it better?
Danielle: [30:53] It’s literally helping your body absorb the psilocybin at a quicker rate.
Joe: [30:58] There ya go.
Danielle: [30:59] Yeah, like squeezing a whole lemon and then having that, like the onset will typically be shorter. It’ll come on in a quicker amount of time.
Joe: [31:08] There ya go.
Danielle: [31:09] Everybody’s able to access the constituents.
Joe: [31:11] There we go. It’s a beautiful thing!
Danielle: [31:13] It’s a beautiful thing, absolutely. Wait, there was something else you said a moment ago that I really wanted to touch on.
Joe: [31:19] Was it around isolating things?
Danielle: [31:21] Yeah, and… oh, when you were talking about poppy and it’s such a good example. People have this image in their head of like, oh yeah, poppy opium horrible. One of the herbs I would use all the time in clinical practice is eschscholzia californica; it’s California poppy and it’s one of these amazing anodynes, or pain relievers, like a natural pain reliever that’s completely legal, and you can take it in a tincture, and such amazing benefits that are combined within the plant itself. There’s all this alchemy that’s happening, and synergy, and then, especially when we’re creating products that have other ingredients in them, we’re kind of doing the work for the consumer so they don’t have to be their own herbalists and alchemists. But like, here you go, here’s a full spectrum product that has, like even though Cured uses CBD, you combine it with functional mushrooms, with herbs, with so many whole food real ingredients that the body recognizes. I feel such a difference – well, Cured is the only CBD products I’ll take –
Joe: [32:28] That’s a good answer.
Danielle: [32:29] But in comparison, it is a difference when there’s a full spectrum – that’s probably the wrong word, cut and paste here –
Joe: [32:39] No, it’s right.
Danielle: [32:40] You know, it’s more than an isolated constituent. Our bodies can recognize like, even if someone’s taking Vitamin C, I would encourage take it with something that has Vitamin C in it. Take it with an orange, take it with whatever else it might be that your body recognizes whole so you can process it, and you’ll actually process that supplement better.
Joe: [33:01] It makes sense.
Danielle: [33:03] Yeah.
Joe: [33:04] I mean, like it’s… so, I’m really good at having these asides recently, so bear with me.
Danielle: [33:13] Great.
Joe: [33:14] I’ve experienced depression in the past, and when I’ve looked back at those experiences, there’s been this separation of self and who I want to be, or who I believe I am and who I actually am showing up to be. It’s like this out of integrity type thing, and it’s the separation or the distance from my most natural form. And that’s what I really see happening here. Once again, it’s a living being, it’s a living organism, and we take it and we manipulate it. Then, how, just as I couldn’t recognize myself when I was really depressed, how can the body recognize the Vitamin C? Well, then you combine it.
Danielle: [34:05] Right. And I’m thinking of – there’s this age-old practice called Nature Cure, and it’s when we are part of the natural world. And I think that’s just this piece of disconnection, is when I realized the past 10 days I was literally sleeping under the stars and waking up with the sun, and it’s the most healing. Like, it’s getting back to source, to what we’re a part of, how we evolve to live in alignment with the cycles of the Earth. Now with modern life, when we’re indoors, when we’re staring at a screen, when we’re stimulating ourselves and trying to fuel our bodies with all these foreign ingredients, we’re so disconnected from, really, nature, and in turn, the nature of who we are. So, a really simply way to bring nature [inaudible] into your life, if you don’t have time to stand outside in the sun for 30 seconds a day or take 3 deep breaths in natural air is bringing nature into your body. I think that’s something we’re trying to do. How can we create something that meets the demand, many demands of modern life, and have – it’s like dipping someone’s toe into a pond, and once they do, like wow, that feels really good; ok, let me see what happens if I put my full foot in – and I see that with, whether it’s taking a Rise in the morning or taking a lion’s mane coffee, it’s like ok, this is really, really simple. Like tiny, tiny baby step. It’s elevating something that maybe you already do, or you already take something, but the tiniest step. Then, from there, what can open up? What else does your body want? It’s almost this energetic shift too of you are deciding to do something for your body, and it’s a positive feedback loop. It’s like ok, your body will start reacting wanting more of that.
Joe: [36:05] And why wouldn’t you do that over and over and over again? Because your body recognizes it and it thanks you. I want to talk about… so, we have this idea of balance, and I can’t remember what you said, but when we’re talking about immune support and gut health and understanding that piece. We were on the phone not too long ago, and we were talking about… just immunity. You said something about herbs, and specific herbs used for immune support, and how they should be used and shouldn’t be used vs. what do we actually need to work on and is it our gut health. Can you explain that a little bit more? Because I was trying to understand that and I think that’s really important for people to understand when – like you don’t just, on the flipside – so we’re talking about taxing our bodies from just perform, perform, perform, perform; but there’s also the other side where ok, now we’ve found the herbs, the mushrooms, the products that we want to use, but there’s also an extent to how we use them in a specific way. Can you touch on that a little bit?
Danielle: [37:26] Yeah. I think gut health we’ve heard – I mean, there’s so much more research coming out the past decade around gut health – but we’re truly realizing that it is the root of our being, and you think about it as this processing site, so no matter what we’re taking, whether it’s bad food, good food, bad supplements, good supplements, if our gut health is impaired, our body isn’t going to be able to absorb whatever it is that we are putting in our system. So, instead of thinking about, oh, let me take all these things to support my immunity or to support my brain function, if we really want to get to the root of what’s going on, I think starting at the gut is, no matter what human we’re talking about, it’s the place to begin. There’s so many different words for what ailments are happening in our gut, but food systems are my past and big passion of mine and really why I got into all of this work, and there’s so many foreign ingredients, lack of nutrition in our food and our soils, and it’s causing, of course, with all of us, inflammation, inflammation, inflammation, and the main place that begins in our gut. Specifically, in our gut lining. We’re seeing, literally – I like this visceral example of leaky gut, and these tight junctions that make up our small and large intestines splitting apart, and nutrients that should be going in this direct path from out mouth to our bums, this natural process, that’s being disturbed. So, looking at ok, how can we actually start supporting our gut, and from there, what changes in our body. When we talk about things like functional mushrooms, this is something that I think is so foundational. When I’m like yeah, functional mushrooms are this route (root?) to long term health and sustainable nourishment, is their ability – all functional mushrooms – to support gut health. One of the main ways they do that is with prebiotics.
Joe: [39:36] All functional mushrooms, you just said.
Danielle: [39:39] Yeah, I mean, the main function – when we talk about functional mushrooms, we’re talking reishi, turkey tail, chaga, lion’s mane, cordyceps. They contain prebiotics, so same thing found in insoluble fibers that our body literally can’t digest, so it’s not broken down in our stomach, so it actually – these are able to make their way into our intestinal tract and they’re used as food for the microorganisms in our gut for probiotics.
Joe: [40:06] Probiotics. Ok.
Danielle: [40:08] Right? So, it’s literally-
Joe: [40:09] I’ve always wanted to piece that whole thing together. It made sense contextually, like ok, you have – prebiotic is the precursor to the probiotic [inaudible] does that work.
Danielle: [40:18] Exactly. It’s the food. It’s literally the food that can’t be – it cannot be broken down before it gets to our intestine, so it makes it in full form to our intestine. Then our probiotics get to use that and grow and thrive and be nourished because they’re getting the right food that they need. It’s really like, we saw-
Joe: [40:35] They’re performing their daily routine within our gut. They figured it out.
Danielle: [40:38] Literally! But, it’s – probiotics, like oh yeah, let me supplement, supplement, supplement – but if you’re not actually feeding your body what it needs to do its work on its own, that’s, I think, what we’re talking about big picture. How can we get the body to be restored into a place that it’s functioning optimally without really needing anything, but just having extra allies, or knowing what to rely on that is going to continue to build and support your body and not further put you down a hole. I mean, gut health is just so critical. Functional mushrooms, if we’re going to choose, you know, this aligned thing that we’re both so passionate about to support daily that also gives you so many other benefits, like I feel like gut health isn’t really spoken about that much when we talk about functional mushrooms.
Joe: [41:26] No, no. Not from what I hear, at least. What are the main ones that you look at?
Danielle: [41:33] Turkey tail is kind of our biggest player in terms of direct gut support. But, there’s – yeah, just having prebiotics in your system, it’s more choosing. Instead of choosing ok, this is directly to support my gut, I feel like people don’t… there’s not an action that they can associate with it, so it’s less easy to make that a habit, versus – that’s why mushrooms are so brilliant. It’s like, ok, but you’re looking to focus more, so bring lion’s mane on board and you can also have that support to your gut. Or you’re trying to support your stress response, so bring reishi on board, and that’s also going to be supporting your gut. So, we have – they’re not just one thing, one substance for one action. They have hundreds of different actions in the body, and one of them, that’s kind of this secret that I love about them, is their ability to really to nourish and support our gut, our intestines. It’s really wild what, in clinical practice, symptoms you really think have nothing to do with the body’s ability to break down to absorb nutrients, once gut is repaired, and one way we can talk about many different parts of supporting gut health, sunshine, critical, Vitamin D. But, once the gut is starting to be healed and nourished, and literally tissue of the lining is being rebuilt, symptoms that have nothing to do with gut, they start to go away. People are actually able to absorb what they’re putting in their body, and so, it’s like sometimes I don’t even want to address the primary, secondary, tertiary complaints of someone until we’ve just done gut healing for a month, sometimes 2, 3 months, because you get – it’s like clearing the fog away, and it’s like ok, once that’s actually working properly, what remains? What are you actually dealing with? Now we can have a clear idea of where to go. And from that place, that’s where I think the perform herbs can come in. Like ok, yeah, we have this really strong foundation, your gut’s being supported, and you’re having a hard time focusing, or you have an injury in your knee and you’re having nerve pain. Ok, great. Now we have these ailments to actually short-term support, whatever that might be.
Joe: [44:03] Can you educate us on rhodiola? Because that is a herb that I know you guys use, and we also use it. And I’m going to turn the light on real quick.
Danielle: [44:13] So, rhodiola is an adaptogen. It’s actually a little succulent, so it’s super cute. It’s like, yeah, it’s this small little succulent. And it grows in some of the toughest climates on Earth. So, you can find it in Mongolia, places of Canada, Russia, like really extreme climates. I love – and I think we’ve talked about the doctrine of signatures before – but looking at where something grows and that giving us an idea of what it can do for our bodies. Same thing of doctrine of signatures, what something looks like, a walnut being good for the brain, right? So, that kind of idea. But I think of rhodiola as being this little support system that when you’re going through tough times, really to build and nourish and strengthen you to get you through. I love this little story about Russian folklore with rhodiola. So, one of the common names is rose root, and some people say it’s ‘cause – so, we use the root of the succulent – and some people will say oh, it has this kind of nice rosy smell. But, when you really dig into the culture and the folklore of it, when couples, newlyweds, when they get married, they would get, instead of a bouquet of roses, they’d often be given a bouquet of rhodiola root as this way to welcome them into this new path, into this new chapter of their life, with here you go, here’s this tool to help you endure, to give you the strength you need to face this new challenge of your life.
Joe: [45:55] Wow.
Danielle: [45:56] So, that’s kind of how I think of her, rhodiola, as this really wonderful, nourishing, building, strengthening ally when challenge comes our way. And because it’s an adaptogen, it’s obviously support the stress response, so it has that more root-based approach to… not being just like oh, I’m just going to kind of energize you really quick or give you this quick fix; but it’s really like ok-
Joe: [46:29] You’re good at painting the – you’re so good at painting the pictures. I had never heard the walnut and the brain thing. It makes sense.
Danielle: [46:35] What? You never heard that?
Joe: [46:37] No.
Danielle: [46:38] Oh my God, yeah!
Joe: [46:39] I’m embarrassed to say that, but I’ve never heard that before. And it makes sense.
Danielle: [46:44] But really, it’s hearing – there’s so much wisdom in the natural world that’s like the big theme, that we didn’t even decide, that has come through, through this conversation. But I love understanding, like really knowing what a plant looks like, where it grows, who’s used it, and what cultures, in what way, and that really setting the stage, because what we’re doing is reviving these plants, these mushrooms, these really ancient medicines, and bringing them into our modern world because we need them. You know, we really do, and they’re there, and they’re time tested, and there’s hundreds, sometimes thousands of years of practice and lore and history behind them. Rhodiola’s such a good example of this little beautiful, like a yellow succulent that can really, really help give us the strength and nourishment, the stamina that we need to kind of face whatever challenges.
Joe: [47:43] I love it. So, I’m curious. When we started this conversation, we were talking about warming and cooling effects.
Danielle: [47:47] Yes.
Joe: [47:58] And in my mind, I was piecing them with like an energetic, but am I thinking about that correctly, in that would you take a certain – would a herb that you say has warming properties be used for focus? How do we think about that, or are those not even connected?
Danielle: [48:27] Totally connected. So, everybody – and we talked about Ayurveda and doshas – everybody has a certain balance of heat a moisture. Some people are more cold and moist, other people are hot and dry or a combination. Every plant has an energetic as well. There’s more common examples that most people will know, like ginger and cayenne are warming, and so they’re stimulating vs. something like cannabis is really drying. Nettle is really drying vs. aloe vera is really moistening. Most of our other herbs are – most herbs are cooling. So, we’re kind of having these… 4 different categories based on moisture and temperature, and it’s kind of like matchmaking. I like to give this example of both of us coming in to this room, and we’re both feeling a little stomach cramp or digestive issue, and we’ve often been told ginger is a really get herb for digestion. For me, I’m a really Pitta, fiery, hot by nature person. So, when I take something that’s really warm and stimulating like ginger or cayenne, it totally throws me off balance. It’s not bringing me into my vitality. Let’s say you have more of a colder constitution; you take that same herb for the same issue, and it’s going to bring you right where you need to be.
Joe: [49:54] That’s so cool. Cali said, when we were formulating the Rise, I was taking 3, T.O. was taking 1, and she goes, “Well, T.O., you have red hair. You’re fiery already.” I was like, what? But like, that’s literally what you’re saying.
Danielle: [50:11] Absolutely.
Joe: [50:12] What you’re saying right there is like, oh wow.
Danielle: [50:13] And it is. Sometimes it’s easy as looking – I mean, hair is a really bad example – but there’s so many, like sometimes it wouldn’t even matter what someone would tell me in clinical practice. It was paying attention to the tone of their voice, the color in their cheeks, the redness in their eyes. There’s so many signs that our bodies give us to tell you how dry your hands are. Like, we can do tongue readings to understand what your body’s energetics are. And it’s not about all getting to the same place. That’s a common misconception I hear too. Ever with Ayurveda, people are like oh yeah, we have to balance all the doshas. No. You don’t have to balance all the doshas. Everyone is born with their own balance that’s right for their body what’s going to make them them. It’s not like, oh yeah, let’s all have the same elements and the same dosages and try to balance it out. It’s like, no, Joe, what’s your vitality, and let’s support that to bring you into that place. For me, I function best when I’m warmer. Colorado’s a really hard place for me to live. It goes against my constitution; it makes me too cold. But anyway, that’s the beauty of formulation too, and what we’re trying to do in creating products is creating a balance that isn’t going to push people in one direction or another but is really well-rounded, and it’s going to support most bodies most times. But it is this amazing fascinating worlds of human energetic, plant energetics, and how can we match them. I think that’s the beauty of working, if you are really dealing with a specific ailment, bringing back the art of working with an herbalist to help choose the right plants for you. It blows my mind that you can just go into whatever retail grocery store and buy a bunch of herbs, and have no guidance on how much to take or what to mix with what, and I’ve seen really detrimental effects from people trying to do that on their own.
Joe: [52:19] I’m sure, I’m sure. It’s interesting, and I think they are very powerful, and I think we’re recognizing that. One thing that I wanted to touch on, and we kind of talked about this, but a lot of our products, like the Rise and Zen for example, they say serving size 1-3 exactly for that reason because it’s going to act one way for one person and one way for another person. I think that it’s really beautiful to be able to share the why, so I’m glad that we discussed that because we’re going to continue to point people to this podcast. But that’s the thing, is even with cannabinoids, yes, we don’t have all the answers; we’re still continuing to learn. But, the truth is that even once all the studies have been done, or more and more studies have been done, I think we’re going to get the same exact answer. Every time we get a phone call and somebody’s asking us, hey, how much CBD should I take, well, first of all, we can’t recommend that just due to FDA regulations, but the truth is, we never should recommend that because we don’t know you and we would have to sit down and do a full understanding to actually give a proper dosage. And the piece that you just touched on is important too because we have always said that cannabinoids are extremely safe, and CBD is extremely safe, but there’s always a limit. There’s always a limit, and there’s always a place where just putting the whole kitchen sink in a supplement is not going to be the answer. We’ve actually had several people ask that on our products, is wow, why do you have so many herbs in there. It was actually other herbalists at the Alchemist Kitchen, and we were like yeah, we actually are herbalists. I was the one that said I wanted to use these herbs, or wanted to try these herbs, and then our herbalist Cali helped us, and she ended up pulling some out; but it was true that you can’t just pull everything together and throw it all in the kitchen sink, and blend it up and say this is going to work. I think that that’s really important for consumers to be conscious of that, because although you can say yes, this herb works, yes, this mushroom works, yes, this cannabinoid works, combining them might not always be the answer. So, I just wanted to discuss that for a second because we curated our products in a very specific way from an understanding that that’s the case.
Danielle: [54:58] Yeah, absolutely. Two things there. The first is about the whole kitchen sink. People are like oh, this is good for me; the more I take, the more it will be better for me, and we see that all the time. We’ll just do an example that has nothing to do with our products to make it really understandable. With so many – like omegas are the first thing that I’m thinking of. We talk about [inaudible], whatever. But, thinking of omegas, we have omega-3, 6, and 9, and so many people are like oh, I need to take omegas, I want to support inflammation, so I’m going to get a 3, 6, 9 because I’m going to get all of them; and we don’t realize that we’re, our modern day human diets are really abundant in omega-9s. We get those a lot, we don’t get as much 3s and 6s, which are in seaweeds and organ meats. 3s and 6s are anti-inflammatory and 9s are pro-inflammatory. So, we have this totally whack ratio going on, s when people then are like oh, I need this to support inflammation, I’m going to go take this, and they’re just continuing – like, they’re literally not supporting what they’re going for at all. And it’s not their fault, they don’t know; but it’s like, ok, no, we’re actually trying to bring the 3s and 6s on board so that you can balance out. Your body can only process so many omegas at the same time. It’s like this bottleneck system where they’re all trying to get through the same door. So, you really want to bring on more 3s and 6s to get more through the same door instead of all the 9s getting through.
Joe: [56:36] Did you see our post today on Instagram?
Danielle: [56:37] No. No. Is it all about this?
Joe: [56:40] Well, no; but it was about why we don’t sell gummies. Because the sugar and these other crazy ingredients that are in some gummies that people are selling are all pro-inflammatory. And you take CBD for several reasons, but one is for its anti-inflammatory properties. So, why are you – you should just drink some water maybe.
Danielle: [57:02] Yeah, goes back to our beginning of our conversation. Like, how are these ingredients and these allies going to be most effective? What else are you taking them with?
Joe: [57:10] Yeah, and I cut you off, so what was the second piece?
Danielle: [57:14] No, I was just like, it’s saying that the whole kitchen sink isn’t the right way to go. So, really believing and trusting in the people behind the different products that you’re selling to so that you know that, ok, this is actually to be effective for what I’m looking for, instead of like, let’s jut throw it all on. More isn’t always better. All isn’t always better. It’s really, that’s not how it works. The second piece… I’m really in this travel brain, like so chill. I just feel like I’m still on a boat. Dang, I totally lost it. Sorry.
Joe: [57:52] Throwing the whole kitchen sink together, and you were saying the way that the two – how things can interact. But yeah, I mean, it’s just really interesting, and I don’t think – I think that more and more education is being put out there. This is why you do what you do as an educator for Four Sigmatic. Because, let’s be real, we’re not going to be able to stop people from making the wrong decisions, or for companies to be going out there and just making a dollar off of things that are trendy. That’s really what we’re seeing is going on in the CBD industry, the cannabinoid industry, and I’m sure probably the mushroom world as well. The truth is, all we can do is sit back and say hey, here’s the actual education from the people that truly understand what’s going on here, and we’re going to put it out into the world. And whether it’s heard or not heard, well, we can’t really control that; but we are, as brands, going to put that out into the world and say hey, we’re just here to educate so you guys can make an informed decision whether you’re buying a Cured product or you’re buying a Four Sigmatic product, or you’re not.
Danielle: [59:08] Right. And I remembered the other piece.
Joe: [59:11] Perfect.
Danielle: [59:12] Which is, because you were talking about dosing, and 1-3 capsules, and the difference in every body, and the bigger picture here is helping and guiding people to connect with their own body… and connect to, just as you were saying before, to your own source, to nature, to what’s real, what’s authentic in you. So, yeah, we can have these bumper guidelines of take this much, but it’s really, I’m always like listen to your body. There’s so much wisdom. Start with a little bit, see how you feel, take more if you need more. Take less if you need less. It’s like, your body will tell you, and it’s this really, people don’t want – I mean, we’ve kind of lost that art. It’s fascinating, reading this study where we’re trying to create this perfect formula for thirst, and we’re going to put this much sugar and this much potassium and these amount of trace minerals, and it’s going to be amazing; and at the end of it, it was like, ok, how do we really know. It’s like, oh, your body has this amazing thing: it’s called thirst, and will tell you when you need to drink water.
Joe: [01:00:18] Oh my God! I’m going to tell you something, and you’re going to laugh. A couple weeks ago, I was on a trip with my men’s group, and I ate some mushrooms, and we went on a hike and came back and I was like, oh my stomach, it hurts so bad, and I’m like it’s just the mushrooms, it’ll pass. Then, I was like still 20, 30, 40 minutes later, still had a really bad stomachache, and my buddy goes, “Have you tried eating any food?” And I ate some food, and he was making fun of me the next day because we were talking about our what we’ve pulled from the weekend, and we go, Joe learned what hunger pangs were. I was like damnit.
Danielle: [01:01:07] That’s so real! Sometimes we need the most simple answers.
Joe: [01:01:13] I was hungry.
Danielle: [01:01:14] You were hungry. Duh.
Joe: [01:01:16] I wasn’t listening.
Danielle: [01:01:17] And we make things so – you weren’t listening. We make things so complicated. Like, what could it be or what did I do or not do, and really just trying to shut out all that noise and get back to the basics. There’s so much wisdom in these bodies that are doing so much for us every moment, and they will tell us; and really using natural allies and supporting our bodies in the ways that we talk about wellness, that’s the bigger picture. It’s really how can we continue to get back to connection with ourselves to listen again.
Joe: [01:01:50] Paint the whole picture of the cycle again and what we’re talking about here for the daily human experience, and how you’re kind of defining it.
Danielle: [01:02:00] Like our buckets that we were talking about before, yeah. I think there’s-
Joe: [01:02:04] Because we’re talking about simplification, and I think that’s what we’re shooting for.
Danielle: [01:02:09] So, we need to prepare. We need to prepare, whether that means with specific ingredients like chaga mushroom, or things that are going to build our system, whether it’s the right nutrients, or organic foods, whole foods, local foods, season foods, whatever that means to you, really preparing your body. Then, we want to perform. So, no matter how much you’re prepared, you’ve gotta go and do your work in the world, whether that’s being a mom, or being an athlete, or being an entrepreneur, you have to go perform and do it; so, there’s allies that come on board for that time. Lion’s mane, rhodiola being the two that we’ve talked about, but so many other ways and things that you can do, or whether it’s internal or you’re actually physically, that are wellness related to help you perform. Then, there’s the restore, there’s the unwind. It’s at the end of your day, you’ve prepared yourself, you’ve performed, and then it’s this time, this cycle, of being able to rest, to relax, to take your stress and throw it out the window. Things like reishi, things like a bit of cacao that are rich in magnesium. Our body knows, we crave sweets at the end of the day. Oh, there’s so much magnesium, this amazing relaxer, in chocolate. Ok, there’s some basic wisdom that is really so intuitive. So, it’s getting back to those cycles, and it’s looking at our day, our month, our year, in terms of how can we be prepared, how can we go do our work, and then, how can we – I was thinking like – relax, unwind, celebrate the wins. Not just keep trying to go, go go, but really turn off, unplug, unwind, and relax so that you can keep doing it again and again.
Joe: [01:04:01] Press that reset button.
Danielle: [01:04:03] Yeah.
Joe: [01:04:04] There’s so many things here in this podcast that are so important, and I really just want to continue to come back to as we continue our brand moving forward, and simple things. Like I was going to say earlier, we hear the saying trust your gut. We’ve always heard that, right?
Danielle: [01:04:23] Yes.
Joe: [01:04:24] But have we actually intellectualized that and understood how simple that actually is? And, I needed to trust my gut that I was hungry, but we also need to trust in that our gut are where the beginning of so many processes start. We’re seeing that serotonin production and so many things are actually going on inside your gut, so if we’re not actually supporting ourselves with the food, the liquids, the waters, and the products to start from within. And then, complete the cycle, whether it’s going up to our head, and we’re performing, cognitive enhancement, and then the full body relaxation. All these pieces have to go together, and if we just slow down and start to listen more to this wisdom that’s been passed on for so long and from nature, I think we can make life a little easier.
Danielle: [01:05:15] I couldn’t agree more. And the trust your gut, I have to bring in just a little heady piece, because it’s really the source of our intuition as well. I think there’s so many people telling you this is the 10 steps to have a better life, and this is the thing you have to do, and this is the supplement you have to take. And there’s so much wisdom in our own gut and our own intuition, and you’ll feel that. It’s really like how can we clear, how can we support, how can we nourish the body? Whatever way is going to look different for everyone. Just get more in touch with your gut, your source, and it’ll tell you, and it’ll guide you. I think that’s what it’s really about, and sometimes we need tools. Like, life is demanding, and we can’t all be sleeping under the stars in Joshua Tree or sailing all the time, as much as we want to be. So, that’s why Cured exists, and Four Sigmatic exists, is we’re really using the most nutrient dense, whole, powerful ingredients from the natural world to allow us to tap back into our gut to do what we need to do, and be nourished in a really vital way.
Joe: [01:06:35] That’s beautiful. Thanks, Danielle.
Danielle: [01:06:38] Thanks, Joe.
Joe: [01:06:39] Appreciate it. We’re just going to keep doing this. There’s a round 3 coming. We are super heady, and I love it. It’s funny because I couldn’t ask for any other way, and I’m glad that I’ve been able to give myself, and you give yourself the permission to show up in our most authentic self, and put this true desire to put the message out into the world. Because I don’t have it figured out.
Danielle: [01:07:08] Me either.
Joe: [01:07:09] But us collectively, I think we can do it a little bit better.
Danielle: [01:07:13] Yeah, absolutely. Thanks for having me. It’s always so good to drop in with you. I hope this was beneficial and people feel like it isn’t this wild, massive confusing world of what to take and when, but really that what we’re trying to do is simplify as much as possible, to listen to your gut, to think about what your day looks like, and to know that there’s brands out there supporting you at every step of the way. To really show up and tune in and be your best self.
Joe: [01:07:40] Yeah. Yeah, appreciate it. Thanks so much.
Danielle: [01:07:43] Cheers.