When it comes to our health, nothing beats preventative care. The steps we take to keep ourselves healthy are worth their weight in gold. One woman is on a mission to help other women take those steps in the most informed way possible. Her name is Cory Ruth — aka The Women’s Dietitian — and she wakes up every day ready to help women everywhere take charge of their health through individualized testing, holistic treatment programs, and evidence-based nutrition and lifestyle tips. When we heard she incorporates LonoLife Bone Broth and Collagen Peptides into some of her gut-healing recipes, we thought it was time we found out more about how Cory helps women thrive from the inside out.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO PURSUE A CAREER PATH FOCUSED ON WOMEN’S HEALTH?
I have always been interested in endocrinology- I thought a lot about going to medical school to become a Reproductive Endocrinologist, but ultimately decided I wanted to be on the preventative side of healthcare. I spent a year and a half working for Rachel Beller, a Registered Dietitian who specializes in nutrition for breast cancer. This sparked my interest in working primarily with women. Then I worked in a women’s clinic alongside a fantastic team of very dedicated OB-GYNs and collected a lot of experience surrounding nutrition therapy for pregnancy, fertility, and common hormonal conditions like PCOS and endometriosis.
YOU TALK ABOUT EVIDENCE-BASED NUTRITION. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
Well, the term “nutritionist” is completely unregulated in the United States, meaning literally anyone can call themselves one. This is a scary thought, considering diet changes and supplement prescriptions can be potentially harmful when not executed properly. Through the process of obtaining my Masters in Science and my Dietitian credentials, I learned how to properly source research-backed nutrition and lifestyle techniques to help guide clients and improve their symptoms. Evidence-based is basically a stamp of approval that what I am telling a client to do is rooted in science and not purely personal experience or anecdotal evidence.
YOU’VE SAID BIRTH CONTROL IS A “BAND-AID FIX” FOR HORMONAL PROBLEMS. HOW CAN WOMEN REGULATE THEIR HORMONES IN A MORE HOLISTIC WAY?
This is the million-dollar question and to be honest, it’s highly individual! This is why I run a few diagnostic tests in my practice before starting any real work with a client. How to go about balancing your hormones depends on which ones are imbalanced and why they’re acting up in the first place, which varies per person. In general, I blend a variety of techniques in order to accomplish this including work on sleep, digestion, stress reduction, nutrition, hydration, and exercise along with a customized supplement prescription and meal plan.
GUT HEALTH IS CLOSE TO OUR HEARTS AT LONOLIFE AND IT’S SOMETHING YOU OFFER TESTING AND COUNSELING FOR. HOW DO YOU HELP CLIENTS HEAL THEIR GUTS?
Healthy digestion is integral to hormone balance, mood, and fertility. I run a diagnostic test that takes a deep dive into a client’s microbiome to see if there are any potential bacterial imbalances, inflammation, or absorption issues. From there, we work to reestablish a healthy gut so that a client reaps the full benefits of our work together. Lonolife bone broth and collagen peptides can be fantastic additions and serve as the backbone of healthy recipes that help support gut health.
YOU HELP A LOT OF CLIENTS WITH FERTILITY ISSUES. FOR ANY FEMALE READERS STRUGGLING TO GET PREGNANT, WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR THEM?
Yes, I work with many women who are trying to conceive. I would suggest they first understand why it is they’re having issues in the first place. Are they ovulating? In order to determine this, I recommend tracking your cycle with a basal body temperature thermometer for a few cycles. Is it an issue with their partner? I would recommend a full sperm analysis to identify any potential roadblocks there. Do they have lab values that are outside the normal range? I would recommend a full hormone panel. Getting to the root cause of the issue can help determine next steps.
WHAT ARE THE TOP THREE THINGS YOU RECOMMEND WOMEN DO TO TAKE BACK CHARGE OF THEIR HEALTH?
1) Balance your blood sugar. Keeping blood sugar nice and steady is incredibly important for our hormones. When our blood sugar is all over the map, it can actually stress our bodies out and may lead to an increase in cortisol, our stress hormone. When our bodies are busy churning out cortisol due to blood sugar swings, we’re not pumping out cortisol’s precursor, progesterone. Progesterone is the dominant hormone during the last half of our cycle (aka our luteal phase) and needs to be produced in robust amounts in order to keep PMS symptoms at bay and achieve/sustain a pregnancy. A great way to keep blood sugars balanced is by adding in some protein, fat, and/or fiber whenever we’re consuming carbohydrates to slow the absorption of glucose into our bloodstream.
2) Get at least 35 grams of fiber per day. We all know fiber is king when it comes to gut health, but it also plays a vital role when it comes to hormone balance. Fiber actually helps us detoxify circulating estrogen, meaning it helps us clear out the excess so that our estrogen can more readily become balanced alongside progesterone. Fiber also helps reduce prostaglandins, the lipid compounds responsible for painful periods and breast tenderness. In addition, fiber helps keep our blood sugars balanced so we’re not pumping out cortisol instead of progesterone. Good sources of fiber (especially the kinds that help us clear out extra estrogen) include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, bok choy, Brussel sprouts, arugula, and collards.
3) Boost your antioxidant intake. We all know antioxidants are good for us, but when it comes to hormone balance, they play an especially crucial role. The delicate machinery of our hormones is easily upset by the amount of toxins our bodies encounter on a daily basis. Think about how many chemicals are in a single bottle of shampoo– not to mention our makeup, medication, household cleaners, nail polish, and food storage containers. Many of these chemicals can be considered endocrine disruptors because they may negatively influence our reproduction, fertility, blood sugar regulation, body weight, and more. While it’s impossible to avoid all of the different chemicals we may potentially be exposed to, it’s vital to support the body’s ability to detoxify the daily onslaught of possible endocrine disruptors. How do we do that?! By eating a ton of antioxidants to fight some of the free radicals that may damage our cells and disrupt our fragile hormonal rhythms. Foods high in antioxidants include fruits and vegetables– make sure you’re consuming many different colors because variety is key here!