Introduction to Naturodetox and Meghan Kennedy Brind

The following is a transcript from the NaturoDetox Podcast #1. 

Welcome to the NaturoDetox Show with your host, Meghan Kennedy Brind, a show about hope and the achieving optimal health in a toxic world.

The food we eat, the products we use, the air we breathe, the people we interact with, and even the very thoughts we think, it's all here and it all affects us. This podcast was designed to help you navigate how you can not only survive, but thrive in today's world. You're the author to your story so listen in and allow us to help you become the best version of you. Through discussions with a variety of wellness experts, you can gain access into this world that is yet to be fully unraveled but is quite possibly the very key to vitality, longevity, and joy.

Hi, it's Meghan. I want to welcome you to the first official episode of the NaturoDetox Podcast. I'm so excited to be here right now starting this. It has been a project that has been in the back of my mind for a long time, and to really see it unfold is surreal to say the least. So I'm really glad you're here to join in on this journey. It's easy really to drown out in the world of podcast today. We're exposed to so much information at such a high speed. It can be overwhelming, but it can also be really empowering when you use those tools to apply to your own life. My goal personally in creating this podcast is really to just share with you what I have learned in my own healing journey, which really span over a decade long.

I really want you to hear my story and then I want you also to have the opportunity to listen to a variety of wellness experts that I have met along the way. I have learned so many incredible things, even outside of my schooling, and I felt this sense of responsibility to share it on a more global aspect. So I want you to come along and learn about how toxicities in our world, both physical and mental emotional exposures, they play a really significant role in our wellbeing or our ill-being. So this is sort of the essential platform that I'm going to share with you these exposures, how they affect us, and then what tools we can use to minimize them and really allow our bodies to flourish as they are intended.

I've always said that my journey, there had to be a larger purpose. For a long time, I didn't know what that was. I'm still learning what that is in some respect. But I think that this platform is really going to be a vital component to my healing journey. You're going to come along with me as we continue to learn more and more from these incredible people I've met along the way in hopes that I can share as much as possible. So, as I said, this podcast, its intention is to be an education tool for you. I am bringing visitors on each episode so that it's not me reiterating what I have learned from them. It is coming from their mouth. It is coming from their minds. The reason I'm doing that is because as one person, we can't know everything, not even remotely.

I don't pretend to know everything by any means. I'm learning constantly every single day. I am learning not only about my own health, but also the health of people I work with. So the NaturoDetox Podcast has been something that really has been a long time coming, I think, something that's been sort of unraveling in my mind for a long time. Then my dear husband, who has been pushing me to finally do this, as I said, there is a component of vulnerability and fear that you're putting your story out there. I think for me, this is just something I have to do as I continue to move along.

So NaturoDetox is really a podcast that is created from the concept of the world that we live in, that the toxicity that we are exposed to, whether it is the foods that we are eating, the people that we are interacting with, you know, the shows we're watching, the products we're using on our skin and in our foods, everywhere we sort of look today, there is the potential for toxicity. When we look at health statistics today in comparison to many decades ago, we're seeing some terrifying results. Cancer statistics are up dramatically. Chronic illness is just out of this world. It's almost like everyone you meet regardless of their age has some form of chronicity to symptoms that they're experiencing.

So when I created this concept of NaturoDetox, it's essentially looking at the physical component of toxicity, but also really ensuring that we incorporate the mental, emotional, and mind component of toxicity as well. So it is the synergistic blending of those two things when we look at it from the holistic perspective of healing. I think we're sort of ignorant to think that you can only do one or only do the other with the way we are exposed to social media and everything feels in our face now and nothing ever feels good enough and we're not doing enough and we're in a culture of more, more, more, success, success.

I think it's really crucial to look at both the physical and the mental when we are healing, or not even if you're necessarily healing, but you're looking to be the best version of you. You want to feel really good. It's not about just surviving. I don't think that's good enough anymore. It's about thriving. So that's the concept of this podcast really is that let's look at how we can start to heal the physical body. Let's look at how we can start to heal the mind. How can we do that? So we're going to use a variety of incredible skills and tools that we will learn from "experts" from different fields of both mind and body.

One thing I've learned particularly on my healing journey is the importance of, of course, in naturopathic medicine we look at like the holistic approach and healing the body and finding the cure versus covering symptoms. That's the concept. But really for myself, even when I graduated, which I'll tell on my story, it's about the concept of not targeting one particular symptom and trying to heal or cure that. The concept is a lot more holistic what I have found and which is why working with chronic illness, detoxification is really essentially the pinpoint of everything for me. So when we begin to truly detoxify the body from a physical component, so the physical body, the physiological, biological component, when we begin to really "clean" the body, what we see is this natural reset, a regeneration to the body's natural capabilities again.

What we find is that as we clean that terrain, the symptoms really start to fade. I've seen it time and time again. I'm experiencing it with my own healing. So NaturoDetox for me is about giving you this platform to share with me as I learn and I'm hoping you can apply it to yourself. So I want to share my personal healing story. I'm still healing. I don't know that healing is ever a destination. I don't think you ever truly get there. You just get maybe closer and closer. You feel more and more content. You feel more and more at peace. But the way that life is with the ebb and flow, I think it's really important to not think of it as, okay, I need to heal and I'm going to feel so much better. Once I get to this part, my whole life's going to be perfect because my mind's good, my body's good.

I think it's really about letting go of those expectations and really savoring the journey in itself, which is sort of cliche, but really, that's where the magic is. It's the day to day. So my journey is still going. I'm going to tell my story because it is the reason that I do what I do. It is the reason that this podcast exists. I am extremely passionate about what I do and why I do it. So one of the things I always say to people who come in to see me is that A, there's no one protocol, but B, they have my complete attention and they have my complete compassion and understanding because when you are someone that deals with chronic illness, which is what I specialize, I guess, in, or focus on I should say, in practice, and what I'm finding is people with chronicity of symptoms that have been dealing with it for a long time, they essentially adopt a victim role.

They learn to sort of close the outside world off because there's a sense of isolation and alienation that they don't fit, that the way they feel doesn't really appear to be the way others feel. That's kind of a complex thing in itself because I'm seeing people of all ages, they walk through the door, you would never expect them to be sick. Then you close the office door and the tears fall and stories that you can't even imagine the struggles that people with chronic illness are dealing with. My story, being sick for a long time, not only has led me to this, but has also really given me that compassion for people.

So I'm going to tell mine and then I'm going to sort of let you know a little bit about what's coming in future episodes so that you can stay tuned. My story begins almost 12 years ago. I could spend probably 15 episodes chatting about it, but I'm going to try to wrap up 12 years as concisely, I guess, as I can and share with you sort of how things unfolded and how it led me to be exactly where I am today. So, as I said, about 12 years ago, I got sick and I was otherwise a very healthy, athletic person. I mean, I had a good childhood. I remember being really active in high school and doing sports and not really having any major health issues by any means. I don't even remember getting sick that often.

This was in my mid-20s then. The only way I can really describe it as I felt like I woke up one day and the world just didn't seem the same. So I sort of acquainted as just not quite right, because there isn't one subset of symptoms or one way to describe how I was feeling. It was more of like waking up and the world just felt off kilter a bit. So there were numerous things that were going on at the time. There was a dental infection that had spread and was causing major inflammation. At the time, I didn't realize it, now as I go back through history, understand a lot of it and I will come back to that, but there was mold toxicity as well in there. We were renovating a home. It was actually my childhood home, but we had in our renovations had exposed a lot of mold.

There were also some other things going on. But essentially, it was sort of like I think the icing on the cake when we began those renovations. My main symptoms were chronic dizziness. I would have intense vertigo episodes where I couldn't even get out of my bed or move my head. I was having heart palpitations. I was having feelings like I was getting the flu, but the flu would never come. It was that feeling of getting really deep chills and some bone aches, just never feeling well. It was very odd because it happened so quickly. A lot of headaches, brain fog. I felt like I was losing my mind sometimes, like my memory would go. It was really scary because I had never experienced this before. So I remember going to my GP at the time. It was in our small town where we grew up. I was teaching actually at the time.

I went to see her. She basically was like, "I don't know. I got nothing. Nothing seems right. You can go for an MRI to rule a few things out, but everything seems fine. Of course your blood work is great." Which is what I hear all the time. In retrospect, if only I could turn back the clock. But blood works fine. Why don't you try meditation? Or why don't you try some yoga. I remember leaving her. I mean, I've known her really my whole life. I remember leaving her and feeling so disappointed. Over the next few months, I had scans done. I saw the top specialists. I was determined to figure out what had happened to me and why it had happened so quickly. Long story short, nobody had an answer. I felt like I was going crazy. I felt like no one understood me.

I actually felt like no one believed me, which I don't know that that's correct. But I think when you don't have an answer for someone that you love, it's a very frustrating process because, especially my family, my sister and my mom and my dad, I remember getting very little compassion from them during that time. I don't think it's because they didn't care. It's because I don't think they knew what to do. Actually Adam, who is my husband now, but at the time boyfriend, even then I felt like he didn't get it. So when you start to express how you're feeling to people and you don't get the response, the compassion, the understanding that you really need at that time, because it's a very vulnerable and isolating time, you start to shut the external world out a little bit. You start to not trust sharing your story because you don't want to seem weird or unusual or a liar really.

So over a period of years with no answers and really pretending to the external world that I was just fine, it was exhausting. I felt like I was getting sicker and sicker and sicker. Many people at the time if I had told them, they would have been shocked because I did a really, really good job putting on a front. Needless to say, one colleague that I was teaching with knew a little bit about what was going on, I think. She had mentioned if you ever been to a naturopath. I sort of had heard of it, but I really knew nothing about it. She said, "You really should go because they're quite a bit different than your GP and they look at the whole body and my so-and-so healed really well after seeing one." I thought, "Well, what the heck would I have to lose?"

At that point, I felt like I was pretty hopeless. When you get to that stage where it's been a few years, no change of symptoms, no answers, that's where your mental health starts to suffer. I remember developing extreme anxiety and depression because I was hopeless that I would never get better and that my life was going to be like this. I had almost just accepted it. I started developing fears that were really not me. I mean, going out in public was really hard for me all of a sudden because I was so worried about I don't know how I was going to feel or what if I got really dizzy or really sick in front of people. That would be embarrassing. I started to just shut that world down. I really did suffer. I remember countless hours and days and months and years of really feeling so lost and having no one to talk to about it.

I went to this naturopath and I remember vividly sitting in her office and thinking for the first time, as I told my story, this girl is listening to me and she really gets it. She doesn't look at me like I'm making this up. She doesn't look at me like I'm some weirdo that has all these symptoms with unexplained diagnoses or results. Thinking back now, actually in time, her treatment plan was actually pretty basic. This is going back like a decade. So she's probably, as we all in this field, we learn and learn and learn. But now looking back, I mean, what she actually did for me in terms of the supplement protocol probably did very little for my physical condition at that time. But what was so incredible and so life altering in that moment was that she opened herself up to really listen to me and I felt validated and I felt like somebody cared.

I remember using her protocol and actually getting better. I remember feeling like this is it. I'm actually starting to feel kind of like my old self again. Not completely, it's never really totally gone away, but there was change. Now looking back, I know why that change was there because somebody said, "I hear you." That for somebody who has a chronic illness is so incredibly important. So when I left her office, as I said, I was a primary junior teacher at the time, I was so profoundly changed by that experience. I remember thinking, "Wow. That is medicine. She asked me about everything. She didn't dismiss me. She wanted to know what I eat. She wanted to know what my exercise is like. She wanted to know my family history. She wanted to know my hobbies and people and places and things that are interacting with me day to day. She asked everything."

I remember thinking that and thinking, "God. She is looking for the whole picture." I remember in the next probably within a year after that, I came home one day and I was actually teaching at Branksome Hall, we were in Toronto then, and which is a fantastic school, really cool experience, kind of a dream job for me in the teaching world to be honest. But naturopathic medicine had opened my eyes to what I believe was the true model of medicine and healing. I came home and Adam and I were engaged at that time and I said, "I'm going back to school." He said, "Oh yeah. What for?" I said, "To be a naturopathic doctor." I did and he was really supportive because I went from earning an income and loving my job to letting it all go because I felt that this was my path.

I wanted to become a naturopathic doctor to heal myself, I think, is initially what the main push was. But I also, I wanted to obviously help other people. I really honestly, truly felt that this model of medicine is the future and that I needed to get on that train and I wanted to be a part of that. So I dropped everything and I did all the pre-medical courses and grinded through those. Had very little science background. The course is actually four years, including a residency program. I did it in about five and a half years. I had both of my children during that program, which everyone thought I was nuts. I stayed full time.

The program itself was an incredible experience, the most exhausting thing I think I've ever done because also I was sick while I was there. So studying until 2, 3 in the morning, writing multiple exams was a lot for me. But I stayed on track because I knew that this was what I was supposed to do. Then basically when I graduated, I didn't feel that I had enough information to heal myself. As a result, I thought, "How the heck can I go out and practice and attempt to heal other people when I haven't healed my own physical body?" I just had my son not long before. I think he was two months old when I graduated the program. So it was a good time to be home anyways.

I decided, I took the next 18 to 24 months, and I literally absorbed every piece of information in terms of chronic mysterious symptoms of the body, studied them, read about them, chatted with functional doctors around the world, did courses. I mean, I just invested my time and my mind. I was determined to find some answers. My goodness, when I began down that rabbit hole, which was the best rabbit hole I've ever been down, I learned so much beyond what I learned in that program. I'm not here to bash the naturopathic medical program that exists. It's fantastic. I mean, you learn everything you really need to know to do a general practice.

But I do think that there are some missing gaps there. I think that the opportunity that I took to ensure that I understood the body from bit of a different perspective than leaving my program, I feel like that was the best gift I've ever given myself. So a lot of things we may have just touched on in medical school, but we certainly didn't go into any depth and we certainly didn't provide any application in residency or practice for a lot of the things that I've learned about. So my goal is obviously to share those with you and to chat with more people to allow you to see just how complex the body is, but also how simple it can be to start to restructure and regenerate what is already there.

So I met this incredible naturopathic doctor in Ottawa. I'm actually hoping to have her on one of my future episodes and you'll get to meet her. She's basically my family's naturopath because you don't treat your own family and you certainly don't treat yourself because you're too emotionally invested and it just doesn't work. I always say to people I work with, sometimes you need someone to just sort of steer your ship and to trust in me and to kind of take that role away from yourself because it's heavy. So essentially, I met and started working with her. She almost was a mentor to me more than anything, but she really began unraveling for me the healing process as well.

So a lot of the things that I discovered about my own illness, about mold toxicity, about cavitation infections through dental stuff, which again, this is all stuff that will be shared through the future episodes, Lyme disease, and not just Lyme disease, but the coinfections are incredibly huge. They are really an endemic because these are transferred through simple things, mosquitoes, spiders. I think we all think just about Lyme disease in particular ticks, but we don't expand to the coinfections, which are actually a lot more common than Lyme disease itself. That was part of my journey too was the coinfection. That was part of my neurological symptoms that were constantly occurring and neurological Lyme.

It's something that I remember doing Lyme disease on exams and school. Basically, you just need to know the strain of bacteria and the test that you would use, which, A, the test is ineffective, but that's literally all I really remember learning. So also viral loads. So we look at multiple strains of EBV and things that are essentially destroying the thyroid, destroying the liver, wreaking havoc on the gut. So through all of these learnings, I really began to see how my story along with probably millions of other stories have been really missed and slipped through the cracks of modern medicine because I graduated from a medical program and I still didn't really know any of this. I had heard of things.

So when I was learning these things through different wellness experts and functional doctors and the doctor in Ottawa that I've been working with, I mean, when they started talking about this, it rang a bell to me, but I did not know how to apply this. I didn't know how to treat it. I didn't know how to heal it. So I was absolutely not in a place where I could enter practice. I did not feel that that was right. Now, I do focus on chronic illness. So for people who are doing different areas of medicine, this may not apply to them nearly as much. Though I do believe it bleeds into every chronic condition or every recurring symptom.

However, so learning this about myself and starting to see the change in my own physical symptoms and the shift that started to happen, so for me, I had experienced essentially the same severity of symptoms, mostly neurological for over a decade. I'd had, of course, the ebb and flow of feeling a little bit better for a day here, a few weeks here, maybe a month or something. When I say better, it was never gone. It was just an improvement. Then when I started to really treat these functional components of disease and these things that I was learning about, I really started to see a shift that I had never felt in all of that time.

So as I said, I'm still on my journey. I'm still taking a lot of incredible herbs and products that are supporting the reduction of inflammation, the promotion of alkalinity, and obviously the viral killing and really the coinfection targeting. I'm doing all of that still in phases and really noticing incredible changes. I remember at my worst point and the mold toxicity was intense too. Mold toxicity is really difficult to treat. I had no idea how to treat that when I got out of school and I feel very confident in treating mold now. I remember specifically at my worst, I could barely even go to a store because all of the products and all of the lighting and the noise and the stimulation literally felt too much for my brain.

I have left multiple in the past shopping carts full of stuff and just walked out because I literally felt like my brain was going to burst. There were many days where I was convinced I must just have a brain tumor and no one has found it because I couldn't feel that badly. I always sort of explained it as I feel like I've had the worst concussion. I'm just living in a haze. So for me to finally start to see clarity in my thinking and start to see the fatigue lift and start to see the energy improve and my mood, and in general, my physicality, I don't feel that sense of weakness anymore that I experienced for so long. Am I in perfect health at this point? Are we ever? I don't know, but no. I'm still on my journey and I'm very hopeful and I'm really encouraged because I'm seeing incredible things with my own body and my own mind and also with the people I'm working with.

So this journey is still going. It is going strong. It is going really well. I feel a sense of responsibility to share what I have learned to you. So here we are. I really hope that this podcast is an outlet for me to reach people on a more global capacity. I always say that in practice, when I'm working one-on-one with someone, I think, I'm talking about these conditions and these culprits and these foreign invaders that might be inflicting illness in someone's body. I think, "Gosh, I need to share this more globally. I need to either write a book or I need to have these conferences and share more." I mean, that stuff's going on all around the world. Functional medicine is really taking off and I am so happy about that because I really believe that it is one of the most vital components of healing.

I think now, health is at this pinnacle where we're seeing the most incredible shifts in medicine and we are now understanding the capacity of the brain. We are understanding the potential for the body and for the brain to literally regenerate. We are beginning to understand the impacts of neuroplasticity. The brain can physically change itself. So all of these things combined are something that I'm so passionate about because it is what has really started the ball rolling for myself and the people I work with in terms of our healing.

I think I'm going to sort of wrap up here and just reiterate the concept of allowing you to take a little bit of time for yourself if you can find 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and just really focus on what you are exposed to day to day in terms of toxins, foods that you're eating, products that you're using, where are you living? Are you in a really urban setting? Are you more rural? How likely is it that your body requires detoxification? I can say with certainty that I feel every single person on this planet can benefit from a proper detoxification of the physical body. When I talk about detoxification, I don't love that word to be honest, because I feel strongly that it's a really trendy word. A lot of people associate it with these three-day juice fasts.

I feel like it kind of has this weird connotation to it. Actually, one of my good friends and someone who is coming on the episode, she's a nutritionist, but she's also just an incredible woman who's really on the ball with all of this stuff I've been chatting with. She said, "I kind of used the word regeneration instead of detoxification because it's kind of this renewal process." I loved that. So when if you can kind of look at just your general toxicity exposure, are you paying attention to the products you're putting on your skin? Are you paying attention to the products that you're using to clean your home, the bedding, the mattresses, that kind of thing? Then of course the food. We look at the physical aspect and that's huge in itself.

It's not about being perfect, I say this all the time, but I feel I have to reiterate this, that it is not about having everything perfect. I do believe organic food is incredibly important because the pesticide glyphosate use is just out of this world. One in two people are now diagnosed with cancer in a lifetime. So I am pretty adamant about access to organic produce. I think the more that we support those companies, the more accessible they will become, because I do know that financial aid isn't something that's accessible to everyone. Just sort of looking at it from a physical aspect, you'll start to see, wow, I can see how toxicity could really play a role in this.

Then making sort of a mental note or writing it out to sort of see it from a visual standpoint is the mental toxicity. So really look at your relationships with people. Who are you interacting with day-to-day? Who do you work with that could be playing an impact on your mental health? Looking at the books you're reading, the shows you're watching, the hobbies that you're engaging in, and most importantly, the thoughts that you're thinking. I'm going to do a whole episode on neuroplasticity and the thinking and how that affects our physical health. But I think awareness right now is just a really good step before you sort of jump into anything.

Take the opportunity to be a part of this podcast. Really, I mean, you're being provided with accessible top of the line, incredible information for your health. You're being literally handed the tools and tips. So take advantage of it and start somewhere because it is overwhelming when you begin to look at the toxicity of our world and its impact on mental health and physical health, and you go, "I don't even know where to start." So I can say that a proper detoxification with a methodical approach, with a healthcare professional is something you should really do for self care, at least annually.

Then what can you do day to day to really support that detoxification process? Because as I said before, if we can clean the terrain, essentially what we are doing is we are allowing the body to return to its state, its natural state, which then allows it to adequately remove toxins that we are exposed to. It is intended to do that. It has systems in place for that. So I think for me, it's about really just opening this up and allowing this opportunity to benefit all of us. I really hope that NaturoDetox is something you begin to see not as something you have to do, but rather what tools can I pick up from this that I can really just sort of chip away and stack really great things in my life because that's what's going to change for you and those day-to-day things.

So if we can really start to shift just little by little what you do day to day, that becomes your life. My whole goal with this show, and I mean this with the absolute most positive intention and devotion and compassion to you that I want you to feel well, because I know what it feels to not feel well. If we can work together and share information and not just have wellness be something that's accessible to people with a lot of money or who know the right people, but available to everyone, that's it. That is why I'm going to do this show and that is why I am sharing my story and my vulnerabilities, because I want you to feel better too.

So with that being said, I'm going to wrap up and I'm going to encourage you to follow along on different episodes. We're going to cover things from, as I said, neuroplasticity to eating to beauty products to our favorite resources for reading or other podcasts that we love. It's all about just sharing information that's going to benefit you. So please join us. If you're someone who feels you have information, that would be great, and a great addition to this podcast, then please reach out to me and let me know. The design for this podcast is really just real raw vulnerable conversations with other people who have information to share, regardless of background.

A lot of the people that will be on this show have an education in their field, but you can certainly learn a lot from people who are healing and do not have an education in health. It's not all about that. Because a lot of times, people who are healing become healers and the amount of information that they learn is incredibly more than sometimes people with just an education who don't have that personal experience. So it's going to be sort of anyone and everyone. It's going to be people that I connect with and that I feel have a gift for you, a gift to share to you. So thank you for listening. It is with the utmost pleasure that I can deliver this information to you. I wish you well.