Even if you eat a clean diet, your home environment can have toxins you’re unaware of. Dr. Ann Shippy comes on the podcast to chat about everyday toxicity and how mold can wreak havoc on your health without you realizing it.
Physician & Functional Medicine Expert
Dr. Ann Shippy, M.D. is a functional medicine expert who use science, innovative testing, research and genetic information to determine and address the root causes of health issues – not simply treat the symptoms of illness. With nearly two decades in practice, her goal is to contribute to and inspire a positive movement towards solving some of the more complex health challenges we face today – and to help create a world where everyone has the opportunity for wellness. She attended the University of Texas Medical School and has a thriving practice in Austin, Texas. She is board certified in internal medicine and certified in functional medicine. Creating custom blueprints and real-world health solutions for those suffering from any combination of physical, environmental, genetic, and individualized health concerns, she insists on using science and personalized attention to treat the patient in totality—and not just bandage symptoms.
Maria Marlowe: [00:00:33] Welcome back to the Happier and Healthier podcast. Today’s guest is Dr Ann and Shippy who is an M.D. and functional medicine expert. We’re going to talk a little bit about autoimmune diseases and how you can use food and lifestyle to reverse them, as well as mold and environmental toxins. She brought up a few things even I was a little surprised about and sad about my memory foam mattresses. One of my favorite things I’ve been sleeping on for the past probably decade and she dropped the bomb that it’s quite toxic. So she’s going to be talking about toxins in the home and how we can minimize them and just how we can clean up our environment to help promote healing.
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Maria Marlowe: [00:02:47] Dr Shippy Thank you so much for being here. Thanks for having me. This is one of my favorite conversations. So first, I have to ask you. You started off as an IBM engineer and then you did that for a decade before you actually became a doctor. So what prompted you to go to medical school? And then how did you become a functional medicine, not just a regular M.D., but then decide to go into functional medicine?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:03:13] I loved being an engineer. I got to work for IBM, which is a great company and got to work on really wonderful projects with great people actually helping to get chemicals out of our manufacturing process. So it’s one of the big, big things that I worked on. So it’s really exciting, really fun. But then I got very ill. I went on a vacation. It was never the same. After that, I went from doctor to doctor. I knew there was something that I could figure out to get better, but I wasn’t getting the answers that I needed. That ever is just getting Band-Aids and lots of testing. So it was before the Internet and I spread everything that I could and then sought out people that were thinking outside the box. So I saw a natural path. I saw a nutritionist, an acupuncturist, an herbalist. And then I just started trying different diets. And I finally figured out what I needed to do from. From getting well. And I really was pretty sick when I talked to people later about what I looked like. They really thought I was dying. And my employees and my colleagues were all like, oh, my God, what’s happening? So then once I realized how amazing the body is and that’s how powerful food is and even stress and our thoughts and I decided that I wanted to go to medical school and do medicine differently.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:04:35] And fortunately, I have a chemical engineering degree and I had never had a biology class. I could very quickly get the prerequisites that I needed to get started into med school. Then I had a child at med school and a child in residency. So even though I knew I needed some additional training and insights, how to do this in the way that I knew was possible wasn’t clear. Functional medicine wasn’t quite on the map yet. And so I since I had these two young children, I just went in to standard internal medicine for a couple years. Fortunately, I got sick again so today I could find functional medicine because it was still pretty obscure. But I found another physician who had done some of the functional medicine training in my search for how to cure my autoimmune disorders instead of taking immuno-suppressants. And then I got up enough courage to open up my own practice, even though I wasn’t sure. Is anybody really going to want to come see me? So I left a busy internal medicine practice where I kind of knew what medications I needed to prescribe or what tests I needed to order within like five minutes when telling their story. So then I opened my office and started getting to spend time with people and use the latest technology and testing to see what was really going on with people’s biochemistry and physiology and then find the most holistic way to get better.
Maria Marlowe: [00:05:56] Yeah. Wow, that’s crazy. And you know, there is this saying something about make your mess, your message. And so very often healers and people in the wellness space didn’t grow up healthy. They got sick. They had a big problem and then had to turn to a holistic way of healing to fix it. And then they go on to share that with others. So. Wow. So let’s talk. autoimmune because you brought that up. I think this is something this comes up all the time. I personally have an auto immune skin condition. I know so many people, so many clients, so many friends, so many people have autoimmune diseases. What is going on with them? And is it possible to reverse them?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:06:36] Absolutely. And, you know, I’m really glad that I started out with that particular issue I developed to auto immune disorders. I had Sjogren’s syndrome, so my mouth and my eyes were getting just so uncomfortable. I was just really getting this trouble. I really couldn’t have a conversation without having some gum or something in my in my mouth. And my eyesight said to be putting drops in all the time. And then I had a anti phospholipids antibody syndrome. So I was at increased risk for having a stroke or heart attack. So in a kind of serious stuff. And so what I’m saying with patients and what I’m seeing in the research is that we really do have an autoimmune epidemic on our hands.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:07:22] And the key things that I see are causing it are our diet. So a lot of times there’s an underlying trigger of gluten sensitivity or celiac disease and associated issues with dairy and other cross reactive foods and then environmental toxins. So as you know, one of my favorite topics is toxic mold but it can be really any toxic substance that the body isn’t clearing out optimally, whether it’s heavy metals or plastics or pesticides, volatile organic compounds that team against that our food is getting sprayed with. And it just it’s we’re getting so bombarded that every it’s a little bit that we’re exposed to every day. Unless you have a super robust detoxification system there building up in people’s bodies and then triggering the immune system to be confused and attack itself. And that’s basically what autoimmune disorder is. But the exciting thing is you can reverse it if you figure out what your body needs foundationally, and then reduce the triggers. You can watch the autoimmune markers reverse.
Maria Marlowe: [00:08:29] Yeah. So and I know I’ve heard so many stories there. Like one of the most amazing stories I think is Dr. Terry Walls reversed her M.S. Right. So I mentioned her on the podcast all the time. And a number of people have actually reversed their auto immune conditions, even though conventional medicine will tell you that you’re kind of stuck with them. So let’s just go back to this is another topic that I like to talk about and I like to talk about it on a regular basis because I feel like people need to hear this over and over again. But you mentioned that the start of autoimmune disease can come from leaky gut. Right. And gluten. So what is your stance on gluten as a whole? Like, I know sometimes people will be like, oh, well, you know, I eat it and I’m fine or I’ve always eaten it right. Or people don’t realize some of the symptoms they may or may not be having. Right. So what is your stance on gluten and wheat? And do you think it’s something that everyone across the board needs to avoid?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:09:27] I can’t believe I’m saying this because, you know, 14 years ago, 13 -14 years ago, when I was starting into this round, I didn’t get the magnitude of the gluten. And I was really careful on who I asked to change their diet significantly. But now, with what I’ve seen in both the literature and in the studies and in my patients, I really don’t think anybody should be eating gluten. Unfortunately, it is just inflammatory. And with the world that we live in today, I don’t think most people can eat it. The exception would be is if you’re traveling to Europe. It is. A lot of people are able to eat to their way for a short period of time. But what happens is, you know, some people like me who I’m actually I have a gluten sensitivity and a celiac gene. My body screams at me now when I eat it. So getting the information way down. Finally, there’s a trajectory when I do get exposed. Usually it would be accidentally I would never personally do it anymore. But I travel a lot of eat out a lot, get together with friends.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:10:27] So as careful as I am periodically to get exposed. My body will let me know within 15 or 20 minutes. And that’s actually easier than if your body just has a fire going on that you don’t have specific symptoms. So some people just get osteoporosis or early dementia or autoimmune disorders. The fire doesn’t actually inform them in short enough timeframe to know that it really does bother them. So to really know, we have to do very detailed marketers to look and see what’s going on with the immune system and the different aspects of the gluten molecules or the wheat molecule and then follow the auto immune markers or follow the inflammation markers. And sometimes that’s just, you know, William Davis did, has done his research around cardiovascular disease. So some people just get blockages in their heart. So because we’re seeing such a link with so many different diseases and then it’s very difficult to even get weight that’s not genetically modified or full of glycosade. I just think there are better foods that we can be putting in our body across the board for sure.
Maria Marlowe: [00:11:40] So, yes, I agree with you 100 percent. And I wanted to hear it from you. Everyone I get on here, I just try to get their opinion on this so people can keep hearing it over and over, because I think, you know, we grow up with wheat. It’s just such an integral part of our everyday life, even almost every meal, really, every meal, every snack. And it’s very hard for people to grasp how unhealthy it is and how much damage it can do.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:12:05] So it really is one of the most powerful things for people to eliminate from their diet to change the trajectory of their health. If there’s one thing that I can have most people do that would be it is just get. Well, I actually I find that gluten and dairy both seem to come out very even harder to talk about because of the case and more things that make people so have so many cravings to the dairy. Right. Yeah. So I find that really people need to get to get both of those out together.
Maria Marlowe: [00:12:35] And that’s something I preach. All my recipes are gluten free and dairy free to make it a little bit easier. And I think once you get over the hump, it’s actually not that hard like you think your life is over, that you can never eat anything again. But actually there’s so many things you can eat. There’s so many great alternatives. And now more than ever before. Like I always tell people like cheese, vegan cheese, even five years ago was so disgusting. Just made from like like it was like plastic is like eating plastic. But now you can get it actually made from cashews and coconut and real foods, not chemicals and stuff. So people now are luckier than those making the change back then.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:13:14] Well, and in Austin, we have this little vacant grocery store called Rabbit. It’s The Big Rabbit Grocery Store. And oh, my gosh, you can go in there. Like every type of vegan dairy products. And there are so many good options for when people are making the transition. I’ll just have them go and get a whole bunch of different kinds and then they can pick and choose and find which ones they like because people get so discouraged if they just go get one and then they don’t like it. So go get 10 and then pick the one you like the best. And then just keep looking for work. Is there some new products that are coming out every week? It’s just amazing how that industry is changing.
Maria Marlowe: [00:13:51] Yeah, for sure. All right. So let’s get back, OK? So auto immune. So it’s a rising epidemic. And food plays a very big part in the reversing of the autoimmune. So can you speak a little bit to that of what changes and how our diet or why our diet plays such a big role?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:14:11] So there’s this whole field of research going on called nutrigenomics. So it’s how are are the food, it’s not just the calories that we burn to run our physiology, but it’s information to our genes on how to behave so we can dramatically impact how our bio chemistry physiology manifests by putting in foods that are very low inflammation and actually support our positive gene expression and then avoid the ones that are going to increase inflammation. So I say over and over as gluten and dairy and grains for some people, beans and some of the other lectin foods are important, especially with auto immune conditions, but generally gluten free dairy, three grain free and meticulously like even a little bit of it. We now know that the mechanisms are very similar to what happens with a cold and flu exposure. So it’s just a few molecules that cause a major cascade immune system response. And then by including a lot of the phytonutrients. So those brightly colored fruits and vegetables, especially the vegetables, it’s genes actually do a better job of managing inflammation and managing detoxification system. Detoxification is so powerful for really setting up the infrastructure that we need the foundation to be able to heal.
Maria Marlowe: [00:15:40] And so I know you talk about the paleo diet as a great option. So would you say paleo diet is great for anyone who’s listening, who has an auto immune condition, obviously working with a practitioner, but a paleo diet or that AIP diet as well? Right.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:15:56] Right. So I find that not everybody has to do go to the extreme at the AIP if they’re doing a gluten free, dairy free meticulously. So a lot of times with my patients, we’ll try that first. And then if we don’t see the auto immune markers budging, you know, coming down over a period of 15 months, then we’ll try the AIP. It’s so restricted, you know, taking out the night shades and the nuts and the eggs. It is definitely it makes gluten free dairy for grain. They look easy. But for people that are really motivated to, they don’t care. Like, I just want I had the fastest path. I do find that AIP is the fastest.
Maria Marlowe: [00:16:38] And how long, in your experience does it usually take for someone to, like, really see results and really have their condition go into remission? Following a paleo, your AIP diet.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:16:50] So if the dietary things are the core reason that they’ve gone off. It’s not that long. They can still significantly better within a couple of months. It might be a year to recover and see the autoimmune markers come down. If there’s also a huge environmental component, then they can see progress but not really get to the full recovery until we’ve addressed that the environmental toxicity issues.
Maria Marlowe: [00:17:16] So, yes, let’s talk a little bit about environment. I know that you’re a big proponent of a chemical free, you know, toxin free life. So what would be some? I know we mentioned mold. What are some of the environmental factors that may be slowing down our healing?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:17:33] So the heavy metals are a big one. If for eating a lot of fish, most everybody that I see that’s on a very pescatarian diet has high both mercury and aluminum. Even if they’re eating pretty carefully, choosing watching the AWG list for the safe seafood, it’s still enough of an exposure that we we see that. So heavy metals are a big one. Plastics. So we’re so used to having high amounts of plastic in our day to day lifestyle to make everything easy. We do a lot of tests. You don’t even see it microwaving in plastic, drinking from plastic water bottles, anything that we’re putting on our skin. A lot of times can have things like, tryclnocene. So we want to have this natural skin care as possible. The acrylic nails and nail polish are also big factors.
Maria Marlowe: [00:18:27] And what about gel? Nail polish?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:18:31] I don’t really know for sure. But I’ve been trying to learn to play the guitar. So I’m just just cutting my nails awfully short. Because for me, that’s one of the things that it’s just not worth it because I don’t really I don’t think the data is in yet on the doll nails. And yet it still has an odor to me.
Maria Marlowe: [00:18:51] I resisted them for so long. Like, literally, I only started using gel like earlier this year. And then I was obsessed with it because it really does not crack for three weeks. You know, in my I’m always cooking and using them. So I used to I did it probably three times. And let me just tell you, my nails were ruined. Like on paper, it’s thin. They hurt to be touched. Like they were just awful. So never again. But I’m sure it’s not great for your nail health.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:19:21] So there this is a great time to have this conversation because there are a few things that I do that are not I know are not ideal. Like I started going gray in my thirties and I don’t want to be gray yet. Both my parents were early gray as well. So I didn’t have a shot. Right. So I do color my hair and I use the healthiest color that I can find and I’m not willing to give it up. So when I go to do the coloring, I do a detox bath that we have on our website. And then I also I will hop in the Sauna and I’ll do some to try to mitigate it. And then, you know, I’m doing all my other things on a day in, day out basis to help to open up the spigots so that things don’t build up in my body. So I don’t want people to feel like they have to be perfect. They just need to address the things that they do have some control over. And then when they make a decision to do something right, you know, if you had something where you were having pictures taken or something like that and you did want to have pretty nails and, you know, go ahead and do it, but then you try to reduce the impact.
Maria Marlowe: [00:20:30] Exactly. I’m 100 percent on board with you there. And that was my reasoning, like, oh, I’m so healthy. I don’t have any other toxins anywhere. You know, I’m like, let me do it. But yeah. So I think that as long as you whatever you have control over, just choose that the best that you can. And here and there, your modern life, you know, you’re gonna be exposed to toxins. But as long as your, you know, doing the best that you can, you’ll your body is very resilient.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:20:56] And I just want to increase awareness to those things that could be really impacting us that we don’t even realize. Like I had a patient a couple of years ago that was just part of what their family did, if any people got sick. They ran around with a Lysol bottle and they even sprayed their pillows. And she’s smart. And we’d already been talking about toxicity, but it didn’t. It didn’t occur to her because it was so ingrained in her, you know, how she handled things, so look for things like that at your your buying or you’re using that you might not even think of being toxic and then look for the alternate ways to accomplish the same mission.
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Maria Marlowe: [00:23:57] So let’s also talk about mold, because I know this is I feel like just recently in the last year or so, this is starting to become an issue that or a topic that we’re talking more and more about because more and more people are coming out and saying, oh, I had, you know, mold poisoning or mold toxicity and it ruined my life. Right. So a lot of prominent doctors, wellness people. So what’s the deal with mold? Why is it so common and how do we know to even check for that?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:24:27] Yeah. All of this is a little bit tricky. So worst we’re on the cutting edge. I kind of describe it is with mold we are kind of where we were with bacteria when we were just discovering microscopes. So we’re just finally getting the technology to be able to look for it. We’re seeing a lot of it because of the way that the building technology has changed since the 70s, where buildings are being built very tightly and they’re really trying to conserve money.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:24:56] There’s less science that’s gone into too the building envelope to be able to decrease humidity. And then the workmanship has really gone downhill. You know, it’s less of an artist than, you know, people really making sure that every little flashing is done properly on every window and every little thing has cost. And then we have all these disasters that are happening. So all of the flooding that’s really affected almost every part of the country. Right. To that really stress test, the buildings, if there is any opportunity for water intrusion, it’s those these huge storms are going to find it. And unfortunately, a lot of times the water intrusion is never even obvious. You know, it’s happened along the water plain. There’s mold along the wall, but it hasn’t. It’s not enough to get through the paint to show that there was even water there at this happen over and over and over again. And then I think the mold itself is getting more toxic. So a lot of times even physicians, they they kind of put mold into two different categories. One is people are allergic to it and it can cause asthma. And number two is that immunocompromised people can get infections from it and actually be deadly. That’s one of the leading causes for transplant patients to die. It’s when a mold has has had a party and just kind of taken out their body. They don’t realize this. And most people don’t realize that the main issue with small that’s so dangerous are the toxins that they make.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:26:29] So mold makes toxins called mycotoxins and micro toxins you can’t see, you can’t smell and a lot of them we can’t even test for. And some of them are so toxic that they’re used for biological warfare or they can’t be used for chemotherapy. There are studies where they’ve looked at some of the toxins, thinking that they would be good chemotherapy agents, that they’re just to make people too sick. And so if you think about chemotherapy and how sick people get, it’s their introduction about the MPAC is a lot of times you can say now, like it’s that musty sense that you get burned, you walk into some older buildings or basement thing and they have a whole different realm of the types of injury that they cause. So there’s a lot of research now. It’s been done on mycotoxins because of animals being exposed to them. So in the corn and grains and that kind of thing. And it’s a huge industry issue for for raising animals because it affects their productivity, it affects their immune systems. They get a lot of infections and it affects their weight gain. So then there’s, you know, in the lab testing that happens, that shows that they’re you know, they do direct damage to DNA. They increase the risk of cancer or Alzheimer’s disease, autism, or just seeing an explosion of the different effects of different mycotoxins in human population.
Maria Marlowe: [00:27:58] Yeah, I just feel like more and more people hearing that they have mold even myself. So my blood markers, of course, I feel like I have everything. So I had, you know, high levels in my blood and I’m trying to think back. I’m like, I’ve lived in apartment buildings, you know, for so for a decade. Like, how can I have mold? And then I remembered about five years ago, I was a very, very cold winter, maybe more than five years ago. And one of the the heater broke and spewed water all into another room. And then, you know, they cleaned it up and everything. But there was one floor board that was always like, you know, popping up. And so at the time, I didn’t think anything of it. And, you know, you fast-forward five years and it’s like, OK, you know, what do you do now? Now you can all only just repair it, even though I’m not in that environment anymore. Right. You still your body actually needs to detox. It’s not going to detox on its own. Right. So for somebody who who has mold, how would someone test for mold, what is should they do what should be the first step?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:29:04] Well, first, I want to say, because this is going to be a lot of terminology that most people won’t be familiar with. We have a handout so people can go to annshippy.com/mold. Then put it in your show notes so that they don’t have to be rushing around trying to understand what I am saying.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:29:19] We can test the environment for some molds, not everything. So if the test is negative, it doesn’t roll it out and we can check the human body for some. So in the environment, the best way to test is with dust. A lot of mold inspectors will come in and now do air samples for mold spores. And the most problematic molds don’t send out pheromone spores so it can look like everything’s fine. So it’s really important to there. There are two different companies that I do to test the dust. And the first is to look at it use of DNA to work for about 45 different molds and then another technology to work for about 12 different micro toxins. So if you have any of those and it’s very suspicious that there is a mold issue. And then there are two different labs that I use to work for the micro toxins in the patient, too. That one would be Great Plains laboratory and real time laboratory. And I like to use them both because real time does some that. And there is the company that I use the longest and then the other one has more toxins that they can test for. So when we look at both of them and we get a much better picture of how big the exposure is and how serious this it is.
Maria Marlowe: [00:30:42] And I think a lot of times people don’t realize, well, one, because mold is not like a common it’s not like the cold or the flu where people kind of know the symptoms. I feel like with mold people don’t realize and they’ll brush off the symptoms like oh I just feel tired or, oh, you know, whatever. You blame your symptoms on something else. Without realizing that there is this larger problem. So when there is mold in the body, why is it so important that we get it out and detox as quickly as possible?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:31:14] It may not be as quickly as possible. It’s really at the rate that your body can handle it without planning it. I describe it as like a series of dams. If you open up one dam too quickly and you don’t have the others opens up and you can actually make yourself sicker. So it’s like opening up a map at the dams all and in parallel. So what happens is if you don’t get the toxins out, you’re going to impact your risk for having more problems later. So it’s like your barrel fills up and you’re more likely to get Alzheimer’s or get cancer. Autoimmune disorders get heart disease. And, you know, it’s really getting linked with a lot of these serious illnesses. And it’s really difficult if you are sick to fully recover without helping your body to eliminate them. So you want to be doing things like taking life as someone with a on and then having great diet, giving you a lot of the fighter nutrients that help your liver be supported as well as your supplements. And then most people have some mitochondrial impairment that happens when you start having symptoms because micro toxins actually injure the mitochondria.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:32:25] So those are the organelles inside the cell that make energy. And so a lot of times giving special foods a quick turn. You can hear the 90 right to say carnitine and divide those who can all really help the body to have the fuel to do that and to do the detox. And then the binder’s are just so important. And everything is a little different on what Binder’s they tolerate best, because if you have a tendency to get constipated at all, you can really close off one of those dams and flood your system and not get the toxins out properly. So things like clay and charcoal from the cold might have such back tenants. Certain forms of silica can be extremely effective. I’m not a fan of the coal east. I mean. Well, call. I think most people do a better job with the natural binders than the medications and are less likely to pull out. The minerals are critical for running everything proper. They use these other type of binders instead.
Maria Marlowe: [00:33:28] And I feel like there’s a lot of talk about clay and binders. Now, again, I guess also because of the increase in toxicity and increased mold and all these issues. So I’m curious with the clay, if you have a favorite clay or favorite brand or anything like that.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:33:43] Yeah, just for playing clay, I use a company called Premier Research. There are supplements called Medi Clay and then Research Botanicals has a combination of charcoal and clay that I really love. Psychology detects charcoal. It starts slow and then gradually build up beta more isn’t necessarily better. See how your body responds and then gradually get it up. Turning up. Right.
Maria Marlowe: [00:34:10] Right. And you also mentioned the sauna earlier for when you’re trying to do detox or things in the environment. So can you talk a little bit about Saunas? Like what type of sauna and why someone might want to do that regularly?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:34:24] So our skin is one of our best detox organs and unfortunately is also one of the main ways that the toxins come in. So we have to be careful what we put on our skin, too. But there’s someone that can lead me, especially the infrared sons, can really increase the release of the toxins from the subcutaneous tissues and then allow it to come out in the sweat. So you really want to start slow again. If you overdo it, you’re going to like your system. If you don’t have a sauna, and you pay for 30 minutes. And you know, it’s still maybe better to start with ten or fifteen than the like. I’m not going to use the whole 30. Just really listen to your body when it’s time to get out. Don’t override that. Or you may have the dam overflowing. Right. And then make sure that you rinse off as soon as you can afterwards. Not all this. The sauna places have a shower, but definitely know wipe off the best candidate and help in the shower as soon as you can so that you don’t reabsorb the toxins. The other thing that I really love are the hyperbarics. If you have access to hyperbaric, it can make a huge difference in helping you to detoxify quickly and effectively. And then it also increases your stem cell production. So it helps you to do repair more quickly as well.
Maria Marlowe: [00:35:42] Yeah. So you’re talking about hyperbaric oxygen therapy, right? Exactly. Yeah. So those are usually I feel like they’re a little bit harder to find. Sometimes at hospitals, but there’s not that many. I mean, as far as I know, at least in New York, like hyperbaric bars, like there are sauna bars because the research is increasing so much, especially for traumatic brain injuries. There are more and more centers opening up on a regular basis. So just keep keep your eyes out. They’re not cheap to purchase, but you can get some of the lower atmosphere soreness if you have room for it. And the finances for it. I think that the bigger units that have more capacity for higher atmospheres are work a little bit better, but still it’s all in a positive direction.
Maria Marlowe: [00:36:30] Yeah. And I want to circle back, as you mentioned, with the infrared to start slowly. And I know there is a trend now to have infrared yoga classes, which are 60 minutes or 90 minutes. So for the average person, you think that’s okay?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:36:44] Go slow, especially if they’re pretty toxic, start slow because you don’t want to end up doing more harm than good. So you might just get the first 15 20 minutes, see how you feel and then the next time you go, go a little bit longer and work up. I think they’re a great idea. It just starts slow.
Maria Marlowe: [00:37:07] Be careful. Yeah. So any tips or advice for our listeners to sort of toxin proof their home? I know you mentioned a couple of things, but any any tips or things that you do that will just help us have a toxin free environment minimized?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:37:27] Yeah, I think running a HEPA filter in your bedroom at night is a great idea. So I like the idea. Austin area, those are the two that I’ve seen work the best just to get the cleanest air that you can lay. Your body’s detoxifying at night and then a clean mattress if you’re getting any mattress. Make sure you get a natural mattress. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen over the years that part of their turning point and getting sick was when they got a new mattress that was in a non-toxic one. So there are great resources for how to get a cotton, natural latex, that kind of thing, because they can mattresses, especially the memory foam, can release a lot of toxins to absorb through your skin and your ones at night. Also, if you’re buying new furniture and you carpeting, paint gets the lowest toxicity materials that you can make can really, really make a difference. I personally had, you know, because I’m so affected by mold, I felt like it’s been a lower risk to be in a. New construction, you know, and be exposed to a little bit of guessing until the last place that I lived in before this was so tightly filled. And it wasn’t the lowest toxicity materials. And it really did give me a wakeup call on how critical that is. And then, you know, if you’re in more of a remote environment and you can open up your house and you think it’s a pretty clean area, there’s not a lot of agriculture where they’re spraying pesticides or there’s not a corporation in post-fire that’s potentially pumping chemicals into the air. Definitely air out your house as much as you can. New cars are also notorious for having a lot of outgassing. So if you do have that new car smell, I’d definitely air that out every time you get into it.
Maria Marlowe: [00:39:23] Yeah, those are all great tips and some of them you just don’t even think of. You know, like the mattress. You know, I go memory foam mattress is great in a mattress you keep right for 10 years or for a long time. And you really have no idea all the chemicals that are used to make these things and then how they’re affecting us. And you brought up a point. Certain people are more susceptible to these toxins than others. Right. So you could have a couple living together and one completely affected by all the chemicals in the apartment and the other oblivious completely fine. So it’s really important, you know, that when we take people seriously, we don’t think they’re crazy or being a hypochondriac. And two, that we do really look at the environment and understand that different people are are affected differently by it.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:40:11] And, you know, when there studies that look at a particular chemical or metal, it’s like a bell shaped curve. There are some people that at very low doses are affected and others that are not affected until high dose. But the bottom line, as that is, for most of these toxins, if you get enough exposure at some time, you will get sick. So we should all, especially if you’re totally healthy, take the precautions now. Don’t wait till you get saccharin. One of your loved ones get sick. Do the work now.
Maria Marlowe: [00:40:42] Yeah. So I’m curious if you have any rituals or things that you do daily, like what is part of your daily wellness rituals?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:40:52] Yeah. So I find that I need to do something like a sauna, my medi body baths or hyperbaric on a week at least once a week. That just really gets me a boost. I also do a lot with meditation and neurofeedback because my system, because of all it’s gone through, can really get into that limbic fight or flight pretty easily, which then dramatically impacts my body’s ability to deal with all of this and heal because it’s more focused on running from the tiger and detoxing healing. Right. So that’s been really, really critical for me. And then I have a number of supplements that I know that they help me to keep my head above water and much more effectively. And one of those is like a somewhat gratifying that I’ve become a life as I’m all good if I’m concerned, you know, just trying different brands that are out there and seeing what really works the best. So I’ve got a couple of my favorites there. And then during some of the Binder’s and the mitochondrial support is huge for me. There’s a supplement called Mitocue that I love. And then somebody ribosomes and a special kind of team that I really like. So it’s I’m high maintenance.
Maria Marlowe: [00:42:11] Oh, good.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:42:13] And it makes a huge difference. I feel better now in many ways than I even felt that my 30s.
Maria Marlowe: [00:42:18] So, yeah, we have to take care of ourselves because if we don’t, no one else is gonna do it. And then these are the things that help you feel better and have energy and be in a great mood then. Then why not?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:42:31] Right. And get to be, you know, be fully present and energized to help my patients. Right. And hold that space for them that even if they feel like there are so sick, there’s no hope that they really can get better.
Maria Marlowe: [00:42:46] Yeah. And that, I think, is another thing that I love to, you know, remind people of is that getting healthier isn’t really only just so that you feel physically better, but it’s so that you’re present in your life and that you can actually enjoy your activities, be more productive at work, you know, be more present to your family and your friends. And that’s really what makes all the supplements and the going to sauna’s and Chambers and the oxygen chambers, all this stuff, that’s what makes it really worth it.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:43:17] It really it really does that stuff and feeling confident that I’m going to stay healthy, you know, after having had multiple bouts with my body breaking down, I I really do want to be doing it. The most important things that I can do most days to stay in this place of being my best self and being able to contribute the best. Right.
Maria Marlowe: [00:43:42] So if there’s just one tip or piece of advice you could leave our listeners with to live a happier and healthier life, what would that be?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:43:50] The most important thing I find is that inner conversations. Like how loving and kind of working ourselves each day. So I think a lot of times that in our conversations are a lot harsher than how we’ve let anybody else speak to us. So we need to recognize that when that chatter is going on, working hard on yourself, pressing the pause button and just consciously shifting over to being kind and loving with ourselves and that it’s just so important. Again from epigenetic standpoint like how our bodies are, the information that our bodies have on. It needs to do and how how to run it has tremendous impacts to be kind of loving ourselves.
Maria Marlowe: [00:44:37] I love that. Yeah, you could eat all the kale and broccoli. But if you’re being very mean in your head, you know, if you have bad thoughts, negative thoughts, it’s just you’re never gonna truly be healthy.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:44:48] And I find that that’s so common. Like it’s just part of that. I think it’s part of a survival mechanism. I’m really helping us to know what to do better. It’s kind of harsh sometimes. So it’s I think it’s pretty ubiquitous, but it is possible to change it just like it.
Maria Marlowe: [00:45:04] Yes. Well, thank you so much. And where can people find more? Where should they look for you to find you?
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:45:10] So annshippy.com is the website and mold handouts for people that want to learn more about that is annshippy.com/mold. And then we have a lot of good information that we’re putting out on Instagram and Facebook. Most days to help fill in some of those gaps of what we can all be doing.
Maria Marlowe: [00:45:28] And then I will link to all of those links in the show notes. Thank you so much for sharing your insight today. I’m sure our listeners learned a ton.
Dr. Ann Shippy: [00:45:36] Thanks for having me. That was fun.