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Health for Life with Dr. Heather Moday

George Grombacher March 12, 2022

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Health for Life with Dr. Heather Moday

LifeBlood: We talked about making health for life your reality, better understanding our immune systems, the role of discipline and accountability in caring for ourselves, and how to get on the path to better health, with Dr. Heather Moday, Physician, Functional Medicine Trailblazer, CEO of the Moday Center and author of The Immunotype Breakthrough.  

Listen to learn how you change your current and future health!

You can learn more about Heather at, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Thanks, as always for listening!  If you got some value and enjoyed the show, please leave us a review wherever you listen and subscribe as well. 

You can learn more about us at LifeBlood.Live, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube and Facebook or you’d like to be a guest on the show, contact us at contact@LifeBlood.Live.

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Our Guests

George Grombacher

Heather Moday

Episode Transcript

Come on one level, this is George G. And the time is right welcome today’s guest strong and powerful. Dr. Heather mo de Heather, are you ready to do this?

Dr. Heather Moday 0:20
Yeah, let’s go.

george grombacher 0:21
Let’s go. Dr. Heather is a physician. She is a leader and a trailblazer. She’s spreading the word about functional medicine. She is the CEO of the mo de center for functional and integrative medicine. Her newest book is The immuno type breakthrough. excited to have you on there. Tell us a little bit about your personal life more about your work and why you do what you do?

Dr. Heather Moday 0:44
Well, wow, that’s a lot. So I’ll try to get into just a couple minutes. So I’m a My history is that I was a conventionally trained doctor. And what I mean by that is I have a medical degree from a traditional medical school and I sort of went through the traditional training programs and I, I ended up as an allergist, and in medicine, when you train as an allergist, it’s also immunology. So it’s a specialized fellowship, after internal medicine. So, you know, the beginning, my career actually is in sort of a conventional allergy practice in Philadelphia, and I worked there for about 10 years. And, you know, it was, it was a great first sort of gig for me, I learned a ton. But what I discovered as I was sort of, you know, working there was that I was, I didn’t really feel like I was helping people significantly, I was really relying upon pharmaceuticals, I was, you know, sort of it was it was a little bit of a, you know, revolving door. And I also just felt like I wasn’t learning a lot, I wasn’t really applying a lot of what I thought I should be applying as a physician. And I also realized that, you know, maybe I just didn’t have a completely full toolbox, when it came to, you know, why people get sick, how we get sick, what we can really do to change the trajectory of our health and wellness. And so, you know, I started getting really curious and I poked around, and I did a fellowship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona, and then went on to do training in what’s called Functional Medicine, which a lot of people may not be familiar with, but it’s, it’s really, we like to call it root cause medicine, we, we, we really look at people holistically, but we use a lot of biochemical types of testing, we look at the microbiome, we look hormones, nutrition, stress levels, etc. To really understand why an individual might be not doing well, or having certain symptoms or getting sick and, and then we tweak those things we really work from, you know, sort of the bottom up and try to help people get to a place of better health. So, you know, that’s sort of what I fell in love with, and realized that I needed to create a space for myself to do that, on my own, that it didn’t really fit into the paradigm I was working in. So I jumped ship, and I started my own practice back in, Gosh, 2014. I think 2015. And, you know, it’s gone through several permutations, I recently relocated to Virginia. And I do see patients in several states, we have some online programs, also for clients too, but I work primarily virtually now, helping people, you know, get better. And, you know, because of my interest in immunology, and the immune system. I wrote a book during the COVID pandemic, and it’s not about COVID But it’s about it’s about our personalized immune systems and how we can really do a lot to to balance them and make them healthier.

george grombacher 3:43
Nice. You strike me as if you want something done, give it to a busy person, kind of a kind of a person, Heather.

Dr. Heather Moday 3:50
Yeah, I like to stay productive. I love my downtime, too. I’m very introverted. So I, my idea of a good time is sitting at home on the couch reading a book.

george grombacher 4:04
Nice, I appreciate that. So very cool. I I certainly can empathize and sort of identify with your journey even though I know nothing about medicine, but feeling like you’re not really helping to your fullest extent, like like you don’t have a full toolkit to your to use the words that you used, and then really wanting to do this root cause medicine that certainly really resonates with me. And you mentioned a personalized immune system. Tell me more about that.

Dr. Heather Moday 4:36
Yeah, so you know, the idea behind the book, which is called the immune type breakthrough is that, you know, I was getting a lot of questions just over the years of people coming and saying, Well, you know, do I need to boost my immune system? Is my immune system weak? Why don’t have an autoimmune disease? Why do I always get sick? Why, you know, so I’m inflamed. Why am I inflamed? Like, what’s going on? And, you know, really, I started getting curious myself and started digging around. and sort of going back to the books a little bit, reading more about more recent, you know, research and immunology and getting a sense of, you know, our immune system is not this black and white sort of like it’s on, it’s off, right. And it changes every day. What we do in our lives, the the decisions we make, the behaviors we have, how we carry on what we eat, actually really changes and shapes our immune system, from the time we’re children until you know, we die, right. And there’s a lot that we can do to balance our immune system, it’s not always about boosting it, right. So some people will actually have a very overzealous immune system that might be attacking their own tissues that might be chronically inflamed. And for those people, we’re really, we sort of want to redirect it, we want to calm things down, we want to strengthen it in certain areas. So I really just started getting into understanding why, you know, what we can do on a, I guess, really on a cellular level, what we can do every day to sort of balance our immune system.

george grombacher 6:04
Interesting, right, that our immune system could be super overzealous, and it could just be running roughshod over systems that it ought not be. And then obviously, when it’s not working the way that we want it to be, then it’s not fighting the bad things in our body. And that certainly makes sense. Why would I think that it was just a binary offer on kind of a thing. Alright, so I’m guessing that that our, our American lifestyle is not serving our immune systems?

Dr. Heather Moday 6:36
No, unfortunately, not at all. It’s, you know, and there’s so many just statistics to this, right? We were an extremely advanced, wealthy, industrialized country. And yes, we might do better than certain, you know, third world countries in terms of, you know, child mortality, and etc. But, and we live a long time. However, we live relatively poorly, we live with chronic disease, we have a lot. We have much higher incidences of certain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, obesity, obviously, we’re, you know, we’re in the forefront there. So despite all this great stuff that we have, and the wealth we have, and the access to care, we’re not doing so great. We’re actually sort of we’re not where we should be. We are not in the top of the charts for, you know, in wellness and health.

george grombacher 7:34
Yeah, it’s a, I guess, not a surprise. Maybe it’s an indictment on human nature. That doesn’t necessarily matter, though. It’s kind of like, cute, here we are. Or maybe that does matter. What’s what’s, what’s the way forward, Heather?

Dr. Heather Moday 7:49
Yeah, so I think people need to think at least I know, I know, a lot of people do think, oh, I want to take care of myself, I do want to live a long time, I do want to live well. But it’s you know, there’s one thing about saying that, and then another thing about actually putting things into action. And part of that is information gathering and understanding what you should do. And that’s, you know, that’s what my role is, is really trying to give people tools and information that is based in science and reality. And then, you know, encouraging people to find people in their life for accountability. And, and understanding that the decisions, you know, pretty much that we make, every single day of our lives is going to shape what our elder years look like, right? So nobody gets cancer overnight, nobody gets Alzheimer’s disease overnight, none of these things happen overnight. And none of them necessarily happen because of our genes. That’s another thing is a lot of people think like, oh, you know, my parents had diabetes, you know, you know, etc, etc, I’m going to get diabetes. And that’s just really not true. And we know that we know that you can change how you’re, you can’t change your genes, but you can change how your genes express themselves. And that is 100%, due to our environment.

george grombacher 8:59
I would think that that would be really empowering. Just hearing that is, is encouraging, I think that we probably all have in our family tree, some kind of bad thing that’s happened at some point to somebody. And the thought of I’m screwed is not a good one, but that I can change my how my genes express themselves is His goodness.

Dr. Heather Moday 9:24
Yeah, and I think, you know, part of it is, you know, some people are very motivated, and some people want to have a scapegoat. And unfortunately, that’s that’s people have to come to that conclusion on their own, like, do I really want to let you know, things just pull me along the tides or am I going to take an active stance to make my future better than then either my parents or what I’m doing right now today? What do I want from myself? And so I mean, you can you can probably relate to that. You know, but it sometimes takes a little hard work and it does take a little persistence and dedication.

george grombacher 10:00
Yeah. Well, that’s that’s his. I mean, how do you think about education versus will willingness to, to make those difficult choices? And not to make those difficult choices once it’s making the difficult choices? Every day?

Dr. Heather Moday 10:19
Yeah. So, you know, I always, I always go back to that thought of like, What’s your why? You know, that’s, that’s a question for a lot of people’s goals. Like, why do you want to do something? And you have to have a really good why, you know, it’s sort of like when someone wants to lose weight, right? In most of the time, things like, oh, I want to look good on bathing suit aren’t, it’s not going to hold up, because, you know, over time, the cheese cake just looks too good. So, you know, you have to think like, what are my really deep why’s? Like, why do I want to take better care of myself? Why do I want to, you know, live longer and healthier. And it might be, you know, things like, I want to, I want to play with my grandchildren, or I don’t want to be a burden to my children. You know, I don’t want to end up in a wheelchair nursing home, you know, lonely at, you know, at when I know, I could, you know, I could probably prevent that from happening most likely. So, you know, I think it’s like really digging into that, and then reminding yourself of that on a daily basis. And whatever it takes to remind yourself of that. You just got to do it, you know?

george grombacher 11:19
Yeah, I think that that’s well said, and probably thoughts that that we don’t like to commonly have or to think about myself as, as an older person. But how, how do I want to be when I’m older, I want to just be sitting there with my mouth open on the couch with nothing to say to anybody. And my grandkids kind of pat me on the head, say, oh, there’s grandpa George. Well, no, I’m not interested in that. I want to be intellectually and mentally strong. And I want to physically be as active as I possibly can. And so based on that, that I have choices that I make today,

Dr. Heather Moday 11:53
right? Because we all think, you know, when you’re 20, you always think like, oh, well, when I’m 50 That’s old, right? But when you’re 50, you’re like, uh, no, actually, I feel like, I feel like I’m, I’m like a 16 year old caught in a 50 year olds body, and I want to get so much done in my life. So, you know, it’s never too it’s never too early, and it’s never too late. Right?

george grombacher 12:16
What are there certain, like, kind of pillars that you think about or talk about?

Dr. Heather Moday 12:23
Yeah, so in the book, I focus on a couple of different pillars. I mean, there’s four different sort of what I call them, you know, types, which is, you know, I think, very interesting for people to read about, and I would recommend that they do that. But, you know, the things that I think we focus on in functional medicine, and I would say, really, for anybody are your sleep, just really primary, it’s like, you know, you can go without eating for weeks, drinking for days, you can’t go without sleep for usually more than 72 hours, it actually will, you’ll die. Sleep is paramount. And we’re very, very sleep deprived nation. So sleep stress and stress management. And there’s two different things, you know, that’s having stress, and then being able to buffer that stress are two different things. Nutrition, so what you’re putting in your mouth, your gut health, because that’s very primary to our immune system is our whole microbiome, and our environment, in terms of what we’re exposed to toxins, chemicals, you know, anything, pollution, anything that you know, could possibly be something that our immune system is going to react to, and cause problems. So and we know that, you know, we can’t, we can’t do a lot, right to change, you know, trajectory of the world, you can get involved. But in terms of your personal environment, you can control quite a bit of that.

george grombacher 13:55
And I imagine, I think I feel like one of the things that is so hard on us as, as human beings today is that we feel so overwhelmed. And we see problems in every corner of the world, right? On our phones, we’re like, oh, my gosh, it’s despair. What am I gonna do? And there’s nothing I can do about that. But I can get more control of what I am doing in these four different areas. And if I do that, if I just focus on that, that will help me to be stronger, and then I can go out and maybe save the world.

Dr. Heather Moday 14:29
Yeah, I mean, I think it’s really important to, for people to understand that, you know, there’s only so much that you can control in your life. And sometimes when we think we can control other things, it actually makes us miserable, very overwhelmed and upset. And so really just, you know, maybe make a list of three to four things that you want to work on. That’s it. You know, I am a big fan of, you know, sort of building on habits, those atomic habits. You know, start small, because that gives you momentum and It also makes you feel really good about yourself that you’ve made small incremental changes, and those small incremental changes actually really start to build up, and really can make a big change in how you feel on a day to day basis, but also in your future health.

george grombacher 15:17
Yeah, I think that that’s really well said. So when somebody picks up the immuno type breakthrough, what how was it? How was the book structured? What what, what should they expect?

Dr. Heather Moday 15:27
So, you know, it structured in, you know, give pretty much an introduction of, you know, sort of why we’re here, like, what, how did we end up with our immune systems the way they are, because, you know, a lot of what’s going on with our chronic disease problems are due to, you know, sort of how we have been living and how we pivot from, you know, a history in the past of dying from infectious disease. And I’ll say, like, we’re going to just remove COVID, obviously, from the situation, because, you know, that’s an infectious disease. But, you know, 100 years ago, we all died from TB, pneumonia, dysentery, etc. But in the past few decades, it’s totally different. I mean, we don’t, you know, we, we die of things like cancer, and, you know, heart disease and Alzheimer’s and things like that. So, you know, how did that happen? And what does he mean system have to do with that, and sort of give a little primer on the immune system, so that people understand, like, what’s actually going on in my, in my body, and then really talk to those, you know, five pillars and the, you know, give a lot of information as to not only the proof of that, yes, this is true, but also things that everybody can do. I talk a little bit about the forum unit types, which are something I created to sort of help people figure out where they are in a spectrum, and then delve into sort of the steps people can take from there.

george grombacher 16:45
I love it. I can’t imagine it was easy to take your immense amount of breadth of knowledge and then distill it into a book that’s actually consumable by a regular person like me. Yeah. And

Dr. Heather Moday 16:59
my point was not to create a textbook, and you know, and I will say that, you know, I’m a clinician, by training, and, of course, I have, you know, fellowship training and all this and pretty extensive training, but I’m not a, I’m not a research immunologist. I’m not a PhD, I don’t spend my day in the lab. And so there’s, there’s many people out there that know way more about the immune system than I do. But you know, this is a different kind of application. And, you know, my whole, my want was to sort of demystify for people, like, what’s going on with my immune system, because especially with when COVID started, which is about when I started writing the book, you know, I mean, people were like, what’s my immune system? What does it do, you know, and people just felt really unmoored. Like is, you know, like, I have no control, like I’m a sitting duck. And I wanted to tell people, that’s not true.

george grombacher 17:53
I love it. That’s awesome. Well, the people ready for your difference making tip? What do you have for them?

Dr. Heather Moday 18:01
Well, I would say, you know, we sort of already talked about this, but, you know, my, my big push, and this is what I use with all my patients, and, you know, when I do my education, online, etc, is, you know, you are not a sitting duck, you actually can control the trajectory of how your health turns out. And specifically, you can change how your immune system works on a daily basis, which how our immune system works, regulates sort of almost all disease processes, like anything that involves inflammation, which is behind almost everything. So I would say that, really try to put people try to put yourself in a headspace of I, I do have control, I can change the outcome. And it’s not only important to sort of get information from good sources, but to then make goals that are attainable, small and build on each other because that is the only way you start to see change.

george grombacher 19:04
Well, I think that is great stuff that definitely gets come up. Perfect. I love it. Well, Heather, thank you so much for coming on. Where can people learn more about you? And how can they where can they pick up a copy of the immune type breakthrough.

Dr. Heather Moday 19:20
So the minute a breakthrough is is available everywhere you can get on Amazon, you get it, you know, you can request it from your local bookstore, Barnes and Noble or whatever, you know, outlet that you prefer. And find me I can be found mostly when I post on social media is on Instagram. So I am at the immunity MD. And then also you can go to my website, which is just de And there you can find out about any services that we provide and whether you’d be a candidate for working with us depending on where you live in the United States, and we also have a lot of other information there too.

george grombacher 20:00
Awesome well if you enjoyed this as much as I did show Heather your appreciation and share today’s show with a friend who also appreciates good ideas go to mo de center calm Mo Da y center calm. Find Dr. Heather on Instagram at the immunity MD and pick up a copy of the immuno type breakthrough wherever you buy fine books. Thanks again, Heather.

Dr. Heather Moday 20:25
Thank you so much, George. This is really fun.

george grombacher 20:27
And until next time, keep fighting the good fight. We’re all in this together.

Transcribed by

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