In this episode, I talk with Functional Medicine Doctor, Dr. Greg Monjeon about resolving chronic health challenges and what he's learned from 25,000 patients and over 100,000 lab reports.
Topics Discussed...w / Time Stamps
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David Sandstrom 0:00
Here's a sample of what you'll hear on this episode of natural health matters.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 0:04
And also the insurance companies. There's actually a neat guideline in Medicare's insurance guidelines that says, care that's designed to increase the quality of life, enhance and prolong life is deemed not medically necessary. Wow. And most of my patients that I talked to him like, Are you interested in quality of life? And? Absolutely, yeah. So so the flip of that is functional medicine and functional medicine. I tell my patients that I get to be the proverbial two year old, I get to ask the question why?
David Sandstrom 0:36
Welcome to the Natural Health Matters podcast where it's all about maximizing your health potential so that you can pursue the abundant life more effectively. I'm your host, David Sandstrom, naturopathic doctor and biblical health coach, and this is episode number 51.
David Sandstrom 0:57
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David Sandstrom 1:34
Today we have in the show Dr. Greg Mohjeon. He is the father to five active kids husband to the love of his life, innovator and speaker. He's the lead functional medicine doctor for eat the frog fitness. His philosophy is the doctor of the future is you. He actively pursues empowering his clients through mentoring, education, self care, and optimizing mindset. Dr. Greg, welcome to the show.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 1:59
David, what a pleasure. We've had just a sweet chat here, even before we got going, and I'm excited to just touch a life I would say my goal is if one person can take one nugget from the conversation that can change their trajectory, then our job is done. Right.?
David Sandstrom 2:13
I love it. That's great. Yeah, it's been a pleasure to meet you. Dr. Greg, and I just met a couple days ago online, and I think he's gonna be a really good guest, I think you're gonna enjoy this conversation. I'm always happy to have a guy like you on the show who's trained in the traditional medical fashion, and then kind of broke away from that strict style of doing things and starts to think outside the box. So I find myself explaining to people often what the difference is between allopathic medicine and naturopathy, but there's different approaches to healthcare. There's cam practitioners, which are complimentary alternative medicine, and there's functional medicine. Now, you, of course, are a functional medicine practitioner. So Dr. Mojeon, would you explain for the natural nation? What exactly is functional medicine?
Dr. Greg Mongeon 2:58
That's a great question. I think it's, it's interesting that we're called alternative when traditional medicine is called mainstream. And the real concept is around sick care versus health care. Right now, according to statistics, the United States, we ranked number one in emergency medicine. So if unfortunately, get in a car accident on the way home today, and I break a leg, the emergency room is the best place in the world for me to be. Now according to the World Health Organization, when it comes to overall health and wellness, our country is we're missing something we we spend more per person per per capita than 30, some other countries. And so for example, if I have a chronic infection, or something like Lyme disease, or an autoimmune disease, our country is trying to take the practices of traditional allopathic care, sickness, care, and apply it to making somebody Well, the concept is understand that allopathic care, they use the concept of I have two tools, my tools are drugs and surgery. So does your symptom does your laboratory work call for one of those things. And if one of those things doesn't work, then they kind of throw their arms up in the air, and also, the insurance companies. There's actually a neat guideline in Medicare's insurance guidelines that says care that's designed to increase the quality of life, enhance and prolong life is deemed not medically necessary. Wow. And most of my patients that I talked to, I'm like, Are you interested in quality of life? And? Absolutely, yeah. So the flip of that is functional medicine and functional medicine. I tell my patients that I get to be the proverbial two year old, I get to ask the question why. So instead of saying that a symptom is a bad thing, I get to think, well, it's actually your body trying to talk to you and instead of saying, Well, here's this for that, and respectfully, there's even a lot of doctors in the functional health world that they say Oh, don't take it. Don't take ah Prilasec for your heartburn. I have a natural thing for heartburn. That's no different. It still doesn't get to the root root cause of what's going on. Now, functional medicine is also a lot more work. It's in allopathic medicine, the doctors are told to not see the people very often because that's insurance companies are for profit companies. We're in functional medicine to do good work. There's a relationship, and it's an ongoing relationship. And there's connection. And it's not just about symptoms, much like your podcast, talk about, we talk about traumas, we talk about spiritual health, we talk about relationships. And when you truly get into that component, I tell all of my patients, this is really a spiritual journey, as much as it is a health journey. So what we're finding so I've done this for almost 20 years now. And 20 years ago, the the allopathic world thought that we were crazy. And now they're starting to go, Hmm, this is interesting. Yet I have even family members that are allopathicly trained, they're so ingrained into the system of insurance based care, pharmacological intervention, even the thought of spending more than eight to 10 minutes with with a patient is completely outside of their realm.
David Sandstrom 5:59
Yeah, absolutely. Well, you know, for the most part, an allopathic practitioner, again, great for emergencies and acute conditions, right, super they, that's where they shine. But with chronic conditions, not as useful. I had a guest on the show not too long ago, Lindsey Elmore, and she said, when an allopathic practitioner wants to do is they want to name it, blame it, and tame it. So they take they take, they take your collection of symptoms, and they sign a Latin name to it, they call it a disease, and then they blame your symptoms on that disease. And then they tame it with drugs and surgery, perfectly appropriate at times. But again, if you're you're dealing with a chronic condition, something like Lyme disease, which I actually had, we could talk about that if you want, I saw that the allopathic model kind of falls on its face when it comes to those types of things. Therefore, we have to look at the whole person, human beings are spirit, we have a mind, and we live in a body. And it's my contention that we maximize our health potential when we align our lives more fully with God's design for spirit, mind and body. So I think you and I are on the same page.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 6:59
David Sandstrom 7:00
Yeah. Excellent. So was there an event in your life where you started to question your traditional training, and you started to explore other options when it came to healthcare? Was there a single event or was a kind of a slow over time process for you?
Dr. Greg Mongeon 7:13
I am traditionally trained not as an allopathic doctor. But as a chiropractor. There was unquestionably a pivot in in 1998, I had just started my graduate school training. And I got a phone call from my dad that night. And I believe that we all have what I call hot tub experiences is something that happens to us and it feels good while we're in it, but it doesn't change our life. And then we have pivotal experiences where something happens to us something said to us, we see something, and it changes us forever. So in September of 1998, my dad called all four of us boys one night, he was 50 years old. And he said, I have cancer. And if two years old, fairly advanced urinary bladder cancer, and he said, Would you be willing to potentially take some time away from your studies and join our family at the esteemed mayo clinic here in Minnesota, and I can put you on the square of carpet at 7608 Newton Avenue South when I got that phone call from my dad, it changed everything I went to, to school to help people to have a nice car and nice stuff. Yet, I really didn't realize that it was about them and not about me. So we saw our entire family went down to the Mayo Clinic and my dad. So my dad was six foot five, 200 pound tall, skinny guy. And his symptom was a kidney stone. And I believe is the Lord that placed upon my mother's mother's intuition. Like Ron, you've got to get this checked out. So my dad was laying on the gurney about to go into surgery, and all four of my brothers were standing there. And I believe that the Lord intended on this to be a pivotal time in my life, my dad handed me his wedding ring. And he said to me, Greg, if I don't out, I want you to have this. And I still get 23 years ago, and I still get choked up about it. Because that's not how we lived our life. That's not we didn't plan for that my parents didn't say, I hope 28 years into our marriage, we can go through one of the most stressful things in the world. And that's not what we do. yet. There's a plan. And I believe that in life, we've all had things that have happened in our life. And the pivot is, is if we can shift it from this is happening to me, too. This is happening for me. So that put me on a journey of why am I doing this? Why am I going to school to be a doctor and it took me on this path of this is not about me, and then that dug me into a path of of really understanding cancer and autoimmune disease and tough conditions now not to leave your listeners hanging. I'm grateful for Western medicine. So they took my dad at the time. My dad had urinary bladder cancer, so they took out his urinary bladder, they took out his prostate. They took a one foot chunk of his small intestine and made a new bladder now 23 years later, my dad's alive Wow. And yet, here's the reality is john says I come to give you life and life to the fullest and so many If our listeners are experiencing life of what is life to the fullest, right in the Genesis that says I'm your roommate in his image and his likeness, which means that there's a pretty good design here. So my dad's alive yet respectfully, and we're in, we're not ungrateful for it, but my dad like has to wear a diaper every night because he has no bladder control. So that was a huge pivot for me along the way. So that helped me understand like, what is my purpose? So my Why is something that I call operation great grandpa, even to be a guest on your show today, I asked the question does this take me closer to or further away from my purpose as a healer, and and what I realized is there's going to be someone that's listening to this, and it has the potential to change their life, it has the potential for them to go, oh my gosh, I've never seen it that way. So I'm grateful for it. And that was a huge pivot for me professionally. And then about three or four years into my practice, I had a private practice in a small town, one of my patients, I've treated a ton of kids on the autistic spectrum. I was what's called the defeat autism now a DAN doctor. And this patient said to me, Dr. Greg, who do you think you are knowing what you know, and not sharing it with everybody? So so that parlayed into a starting to for him. So now we're blessed to treat people literally around the world. And we have a local practice of virtual practice. And my ultimate goal, I believe that the Lord has called me to reveal the potential of others, excellent. So there's a potential that we have, there's no doubt it's scripturally written I mean, I'm a son of guy which makes me heir to the throne. Holy smokes. When we get that, then we might as well live like that. And a lot of people have, you know, mothers, fathers, teachers and preachers, these scripts in their head that are not allowing me to have that. So I'm here to let people want our tagline our clinic is we create epic family reunions.
David Sandstrom 11:46
That's cool. That's cool. Well, I'm reminded of the verse. I don't know where it is the moment but it says once we know that the good that we ought to do and fail to do it. For us. It's sin. Right? Right. So we all want to get into that mission that life's calling. And it's always going to involve other people, it's going to be about us pouring into other people, right? My life's calling is not to go bungee jump as many bridges as I can. That's not that's not a calling that might be some fun recreation, but your calling is going to have something to do with other people. And I agree with everything you just said about making an impact in this world, for the kingdom of God. In other people's lives. That's what it's really all about is not about how much money you make, how many how many toys you have, he who dies with the most toys wins, you know, these multimillion dollar homes like yeah, that's living. Actually, no, it's not. So when you have a patient come to your clinic, what do they typically present with? What are they what are their complaints?
Dr. Greg Mongeon 12:42
That's such a good question. I. So my physical practice is about 80 miles from the Mayo Clinic. So we've coined this term, the Mayo Clinic dropout. This is the person that has symptoms that don't make sense. they've they've been tested up one side down the other. And I have a huge appreciation for laboratory work, actually my niche in the world of functional medicine. My one of my statements is don't guess, test. So and again, the big difference is how allopathic doctors look at lab tests and how functional medicine doctors look at lab tests. A common theme of my patients is my I've had all these labs ran, my doctor says my labs are normal. However, I'm not. I'm not normal. I don't feel well, Dr. Greg. And I would say about 20% of our clients have been prescribed antidepressants, because the doctors are like, hey, maybe this is just in your head. The thing that I love, though, is they didn't just take it at its word. They're like, No, no, that's that's not me. That's not my birthright. Right? I'm not heir to that throne. Yeah. So they walk in with symptoms that don't always make sense. And, again, it's not, you know, name it, blame it. And I love that term. Yeah, tame it. It's, it's to say, awesome, your body is so intelligent. And even even in the conversation of autoimmunity, which is where I focus most of my work. Now, autoimmunity, chronic infection, is because these symptoms don't make sense to people, you know, fatigue, for example, or gut issues, or even depression and anxiety. Yet, these are all the myriad it's all over the place. The thing that I would say that my clients would tell people is I love how we can dig in and understand the numbers, and then figure out the true, why. And that's one thing that I completely love. I'm a geek for lab work. I love the numbers. I actually teach doctors around the world how to read lab work from a functional medicine standpoint. And yesterday, I had two clients here, and I just briefly look at their labs. And I said based upon this number, it means this and I just saw this like Wow, thank you, I I'm so frustrated. I know how I feel, but the doctors say there's nothing wrong with me. So to understand the immune system and to understand White blood cells and understand the kidneys and the liver to read those things and to give people hope. That is, that is amazing. So yeah, the people that we see are the people that have been have confused a lot of doctors. I had a lady come in yesterday with hundreds of pages of notes. And essentially, she went to this like super high end specialist endocrinologist. And he's like, I don't know, I don't know.
David Sandstrom 15:24
At least he had the integrity to admit that rather than put her on a standard protocol, or prescribe an antidepressant and send her on her way, right. So I hats off to him, that human beings are complex, right? We have a lot going on, we have somewhere in the neighborhood of 75 trillion cells. And that's a big number. And I'm a geek, so I figured this out with a calculator. If you were to count seconds, guess along it would take the Count 75 trillion seconds.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 15:50
It's like over 100 years, probably
David Sandstrom 15:52
3.2 million years, my word. Right. So and and we're complex,
Dr. Greg Mongeon 15:59
like we're divinely designed, every single one is there for a purpose. And it's not like my thing like, especially with like autoimmunity, that I like the medical approach to autoimmunity, by the way, there's over 100 different autoimmune diseases. Is there like I'm sorry, your immune system has gone awry. We need to turn it down. It's your system is not doing what it's supposed to be doing. Like, really? Are you saying that 75 trillion cells, and 3 billion bits of bits information every second and my body is gone? Cuckoo. Like, it's, it's impossible, dude, I have way too many college credits and way too much faith in in how we're put together to go. Oh, yeah, that makes sense. And the approach for some of these right now is chemotherapy medication.
David Sandstrom 16:40
I know. Isn't hat crazy?
Dr. Greg Mongeon 16:43
Breaks my heart. Yeah. Here's the thing. Statistically, I'm not I'm there is a time and place for medication. I'm not trying to say that I'm against it. Yeah. But what I can tell you demarre, for example, for people with rheumatoid arthritis, the average demarre is somewhere between seven and $17,000 a month with a 30 to 40% success rate. Wow. Now, if there wasn't health insurance, who in their right mind would drop that kind of cash for that little of a success rate? So I'm not here to battle Big Pharma though. It's it's big money. And yeah, and for those people that it works for awesome. And for those, and maybe you're one of your listeners is this person right now, that's like, you know, it's never felt right for me, and I knew there was something else. That's the conversation. That's, that's like the Holy Spirit and you saying, We're not done? Like, I'm not done with you yet. There is more. And the reason that they're even listening to this, because this interests them. So I love that conversation. I know that when a person is in front of us, or even listening to this, that they have an ear that's bent towards it, and it's our job to bless them with the right information.
David Sandstrom 17:44
Yeah. So I know that you are you're big on this auto immunity thing. Would you explain to the natural nation what auto immunity is and what you believe the cause? I mean, it's difficult to say exactly what the cause is. But would you talk to that for a bit?
David Sandstrom 18:03
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David Sandstrom 19:46
Would you explain to the natural nation what auto immunity is and what you believe the cause? I mean, it's difficult to say exactly what the causes are. Would you talk to that for a bit.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 19:56
I appreciate that opportunity. So then the medical Definition of autoimmunity is that your immune system has identified a healthy tissue in your body. So if it's your thyroid, they call it graves or hashimotos. If it's your brain, they call it Ms. If it's your liver, they call it type one diabetes, if it's your joints, they call it rheumatoid, etc, etc. There's over 100, different autoimmune diseases. So Western medicine says your immune system has identified a healthy piece of tissue, a normal piece of tissue in your body as a foreign piece of tissue. And it's now making antibodies against that tissue. Therefore, your immune system has gone awry and rolling you it's gone rogue, and we need to take over for it. Okay, so I'm probably 100,000 sets of labs into my career. I love labs, I enjoy labs. And several years ago, as I was mulling over labs of tough patients, and I take zero credit for this, I firmly believe that the Lord said, Here's one for you, Greg, as I said, I don't believe that that's the design of our body, I don't believe there's this like, oops, sorry, this isn't going to work. So we started to dig into research. And here's what I and I have five kids, and I don't like them, my kids use definitives. Always. And never though I can tell you, in known autoimmune cases, I have over a 99 and a half percent definitive additional finding. So let's talk just very simply about the immune system function. And there's no PhDs in biochemistry today. So your white blood cells are part of your immune system function part of a very erratic array part of our immune system. So let's say that we get an infection, whether that infection is a bacteria, or a virus, or a mold, or fungus, or a parasite, our immune system responds to that. So what happens is our red blood cells will actually spike up high. Think of it being like there's there's an enemy, and we deploy our troops. So we deploy our white blood cells. And then if our white blood cells have the right tools, and our immune system is robust enough, it will kill the enemy, and get rid of it. And then our white blood cells come back to normal. And they say, real quick,
David Sandstrom 22:04
I just avoid confusion. I think you started out saying red blood cells rise, but within its white blood cells is totally white.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 22:10
Yeah, I thank you for correcting me, because we're like, what, yeah, so your white blood cells rise, they kill the infection. And then when it's gone, it comes back to normal. Now enter what I'm seeing in my clinic. So we see, in walks in an, infection, white blood cells rise, so an active infection. So white blood cells in functional medicine, if you look at your lab should be between five and eight. So if it's above eight, that tells us there's an active infection happening in your body, your body's fighting something right now. Now, let's go back to the war analogy. So there's an enemy, and we've deployed our troops, that this enemy is good. It's got different genetic properties. And there's a lot of it, we've beat down some of our troops, if we're not able to defeat the enemy, we are not able to withstand that level of white blood cells are our troops, they start to die off. So if we see labs, white blood cells, less than five, on a CBC a complete blood count, that is indicative of a chronic infection, it tells us that your body's immune system is there's something on board, there's there's still this enemy, but we don't have the troops anymore, to fight it. And then if you have the right CBC done, there's something called the differentials where it breaks down the white blood cell. It's things called like lymphocytes and neutrophils, not going to go into that. But that's a breakdown of the types of white blood cells. Here's what was downloaded to me. fratricide, and it can happen. So what I believe and we have amazing success with it in the autoimmune and chronic infection world, is autoimmunity is nothing else than an overwhelmed immune system function that is fighting such a battle. And it's so overwhelmed that the good guys, for whatever reason, have been identified as a bad guy. And your immune system doesn't need to be turned off. It needs to be, we need to bring additional troops in and help. So what we do is we do testing to see chronic infection, co infection, co-morbidities and we understand what we're up against. When you understand what you're up against. It gives people this like, Oh, thank goodness, because what I can tell you if you're listening, you're like, Oh my gosh, I think this is me. Spoiler alert. There is no magic pill. There is no easy button. This is a journey. This is an ultra marathon. Yet it gives them peace of mind to at least know what they're up against. Yeah. So then over time, we come alongside and with those people, we see leaky gut, we see liver stress, we see kidney stress, we see a system that just says I need help. Yeah, we identify that and then we walk through a journey and we get some really cool results.
David Sandstrom 24:54
So let me make sure I'm understanding you correctly. So if someone comes in presenting with all the signs and symptoms of a Hidden underlying infection, let's say a parasitic infection, and they're white blood cell, you would expect to see their white blood cell count elevated, but instead you see it low. So that is the indicator that their their immune system is overwhelmed.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 25:13
That tells me that they've been battling this for a while it's chronic. And their, their poor immune system is tapped out. Yeah, and and understand now that they're now immuno compromised. Now they're a sitting duck for other things. And a lot of these people through the traditional route have been given antibiotics. Antibiotics only only touch bacteria. And it also goes after beneficial bacteria. So think about this, if you're, if you're so yeah, I'm all for an antibiotic to get rid of bad bacteria. But it it's not selective. So now the good bacteria out. So let's say there's a virus, there's a mold, there's a parasite, and our good bacteria are gone. Now they're like holy smokes, they can go bananas, because there's nothing to pull them down. So many of our patients that have taken the allopathic route are like, you know, I was I was, I was not great, or I had Lyme, and I was put on three months of doxycycline. And my goodness, I really felt like that was kind of like a whole nother start to another level of my health journey. So,
David Sandstrom 26:13
Yeah, yeah. So I just wanted to say this as well. The approach you're talking about is not trying to outsmart our bodies with pharmaceuticals, and trick them into doing certain things because what pharmaceuticals do is they turn off or inhibit a natural body function. You know, look at the classifications, anti-histamines, antibiotics, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, beta blockers, that's what they do, they shut things off. So rather than shutting things off, and preventing our bodies from functioning where they want to function, we come alongside, in support our natural function, and therefore strengthen our system to overcome this challenge on their own.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 26:58
Unquestionably, yeah. Yeah. Yeah, good. We're 25,000 patients and almost 20 years into it, and we expect miracles. And because I truly believe that the Lord's design is that and, and it also, it takes a person that believes that they can get well, it takes a person that's willing to do the hard work. It's a person that is willing to dig into their faith, dig into quiet time, evaluate relationships, look at look at things that can be bombard and I actually had a new patient yesterday, she was diagnosed with hypersomnia, which is a very interesting diagnosis. It was diagnosed through some cortisol labs. And it started in her 20s. And I said, timeout before we get into all the medical jargon, can I ask you what happened in your life then? And all of a sudden, this woman? She said, Well, I was dating a young man, and I broke up with him. And the next day he committed suicide. Oh, and what I saw what she needed to hear at that time, was I said to her, your body responded, absolutely. appropriately right to the situation. Yeah. But she had a symptom. And no one ever got to the why.
David Sandstrom 28:13
Yeah. Yeah. Powerful.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 28:14
So a lot of my work is to understand the why, what it was. So I'll ask many people, they'll say, Oh, this started here. I'll go cool. What happened then? What were some what were some significant things that happened in your life around that time? And most of them say, I've never been asked that before. I have to think about that.
David Sandstrom 28:29
Dr. Greg Mongeon 28:30
Yeah. Cause that spiritual component,
David Sandstrom 28:33
People just simply don't make the connection. They think we're, you know, the reductionist approach that MDs apply is we are just a collection of atoms and molecules, cells and tissue that's all human being is. But we know as followers of Jesus Christ, that we're far more than that. And all three parts to a person, spirit, mind and body are interconnected. They can't be separated and interdependent, what affects one aspect of our being will inevitably alter the others for good or bad. So what you so eloquently described as that what that what that patient of yours is the the mind body connection, she had a traumatic emotional experience. And then all of a sudden, I'm sure a flood of destructive thoughts came in. This is your fault, right? You're a bad person. And my bad people don't deserve good things. Aw, man if there's so much of a spiritual battle going on at that point, it's it's amazing. So yeah, it takes it takes somebody willing to take the road less traveled, dig beneath the surface of the symptom, and say, Why? And let's address that. And, you know, I can talk some more on this, you know, you said someone needs to believe that they can be well, that's a huge thing. You know, and they have to want to be well to know in john chapter five, when Jesus comes in contact with a paralytic by the Bethesda pool. He says to him, Jesus says to the man, do you want to be well, it's a strange question, right? But Jesus asked the man that Because he wanted to awaken something inside of him, he wanted him to understand his how truly needy he was. And Jesus know he's got to heal him, right. But he wanted to awaken something in that person. And I think the same is true with a person who wants to conquer a major chronic health challenge.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 30:17
You know, David, the word that just came to me in all of that is identity. Right? So many people with chronic infection, chronic diseases, say, My name is Susan and I have Lyme disease. And I say, Susan, that's not who you are. And, and as believers to understand who's we are, is it and to separate it from a diagnosis, for example, and identity, that is not who you're designed to be that pivot is so clutch in this world of a cause. Because like, for example, in that paralytic, and john chapter four, Jesus had all of the ability, you might have the right condition. But if you're not the right person, that has the ability to say, I am, because there's actually something called Parkinson's Law. And it's essentially the conversation of being love of captors, this was actually studied during World War Two in Vietnam, that people actually got to like their captors. So so there's the shift were like, well, maybe this is just as good as it gets. And maybe this is who I am. So I tell my patients, there's there's the science of functional medicine, which is me reading the lab and creating a protocol and telling you what to do and not to do. And that's a small fraction of the work that we do. And then there's the art of functional medicine, which says, Let's, let's, let's walk this sticky journey sometimes. And I tell people there, there are going to be curveballs. And there's gonna be times where you're going to come up against a something and it's keeping you from who you're supposed to be. So naturally, there's going to be resistance in that. And for those that are believers that are listening to this, I mean, that that spiritual sabotage is real, because you've conditioned the people around you, if you think you have a chronic condition that you've had for a long time, you've conditioned your loved ones, how to talk to you how to be around you, where you can go, where you can't go, what you can eat, like you've conditioned them. So if you truly believe there's this next calling on your life, there could be the possibility of like, will they think differently of me? Will they still love me if I don't have these demands? And that's the part of the conversation that I love. And that goes into shifting identity. Absolutely. explain to you who's you are? Yeah, you're so you are a daughter of Christ, and you are heir to the throne. And I need you to claim that because in many cases with chronic disease, people mean they believe the lies. Yep. So yeah, that's such I love I love that john is so rich, my men's group right now is going through john chapter four. And in even the conversation of the woman at the well, right, Jesus knew everything. And, and yet there is this, there is this need for her to receive. And I believe that that's that vulnerability, that we need to have to allow someone to come alongside of us, I believe that one of one of the huge parts of our goals with our patients is accountability. It's to it's to be vulnerable to someone that is here to truly help you. And a lot of these people have had bad experiences with clinicians, and they feel like they're not listened to. And they feel like they've been just given a bunch of drugs. And many times they're 1000s and 10s, of 1000s, in some cases, deep into their journey.
David Sandstrom 33:14
Yeah, absolutely. You know, you mentioned john 10:10. A while ago, that's, that's my life verse, you know, I'm just gonna quote it. The enemy has come to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come that they might have life and have it abundantly. I mean, there's so much in that verse, I could do a couple of episodes on it. But I believe that part of the abundant life is health and wellness, because God says he has a purpose for us. Ephesians 2:10. So we are His workmanship created for good works that God planned beforehand. So if he had works in mind, when he created David, then he wants me to be able to fulfill those works. He wouldn't put stumbling blocks in my way. He wants me to have the health in the energy, and the drive and the stamina to fulfill those good works. And sometimes they can be quite challenging, but God wants he's on our side. He wants to empower us. So I firmly believe that part of the abundant life is health and wellness. And you know, this prosperity, this word gets a bad, a bad rap in a lot of Christian circles, because sometimes it just comes down to money. But when God says he wants to Prosper Us, Jeremiah 29:11, for I know the plans I had for you, not to harm you, but to give you our future and a hope for prosperity, and prosperity. I believe part of that is health and wellness. We can look to our design and say, well, an airplane is designed for flight, right I can see in it's designed, it's designed to get in the air. And we are designed for health because health is our default setting. So we know that our designers desire is health. Right? And but you know, you can get tripped up in a lot of different ways. And that's what we're talking about here today.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 34:52
I think it's important the first part because a lot of people in john 10:10 say life and life to the full study. Forget the first part that Satan does come to rob, and steal and destroy. Yep. So to understand that enemy, and that part of the fall that can impact us. So we need to be mindful of who comes alongside of us who we take counsel from, and also those that sabotage components. So yeah, I, I love it I that's so neat that when people get that, then there's a there's a completely a next step that can happen.
David Sandstrom 35:19
Well, you know, one of the things that I talk about in my book The Christians, Guide to, Holistic Health is correcting limiting beliefs. You know, we all have them. And and sometimes those beliefs can be blocking factors or roadblocks to our healing. And, and, you know, a lot of times we've been so under the cloud for so long of these lies, that it feels normal to us. We've been living under for years, maybe decades. And we need the help of someone close to us, or perhaps even a counselor, or a pastor or professional paid counselor to help dig those things out. And, you know, yeah, it's it's so complex, but it's worth exploring. It's worth going there.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 36:01
Right? Yeah, it's not it's it's deep work. It is.
David Sandstrom 36:04
Dr. Greg Mongeon 36:04
you know, it's not. Again, it's there's no easy pill, there's no magic pill easy button, it takes work and it takes and and not just work on your behalf. Many times when I say most of our clients are most of my patients are females. And I believe that's because women actually are willing to say like, there's something wrong with me where most guys are like, fine, I'm good. So for the guys that are listening to this spoiler alert, one in two me will have cancer in their life, just so you just so so be there. Now, if you're also a guy listening this, I want to explain you that there's two typical, there's two types of husbands that are wives, their husbands to the patients of mine. So husband, number one is the guy that says, I will do whatever we need to do to get my my girl back, I miss her. And I know that she's not living her God-fulfilled life. And I'm willing to be supportive of her, I'm even willing to eat some different food to help her out. I know that where she's at is not where she is designed to be. Now, the flip side of that, is the husband. And if you're this guy, just want this to land. There's the guy that says, Oh, here we go, again, another one of these, what's this one going to cost? And I get to take a bunch of supplements, and this one, Oh, my gosh, well, whatever, do what you want. Now, I say that, and I want that to land a little bit. Because what I can tell you is I asked every single of my patients about their support system. If you're on an island by yourself, it's tough,
David Sandstrom 37:25
It's a lot tougher.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 37:28
And if you're the if you're the husband, and you truly love your wife, and you're like, Oh, I kind of lean towards guy number two, then I believe that this is a word for you. This is a word for you to check yourself. And to see what what's driving that. And also, what an opportunity to have a good conversation with your spouse to dig in to even be apart I, I had a great call with with one of my new patients yesterday, and her husband was sitting right beside her. Because she knew that she needed him on board and they and that he would be her helper inside like, okay, we're gonna do this dietarily and we're gonna, we're gonna start to do these things that we haven't done in a while. And when we have that what I can tell you is a huge, huge part of success in a case. So support system, we need those. And again, if you're a husband that's listening to this, hopefully, I don't mean to condemn you, hopefully I can, as a husband myself, hopefully, I can encourage you to know who your wife needs you to be on this journey.
David Sandstrom 38:27
Excellent. That's, that's a good word really good. Dr. Greg, do we have time to get into the TEAM's approach that you take with your clients? All right, let's talk about that.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 38:36
Yeah, so a big part of again, number I saw I talked about there's that there's the science of medicine, which is your lab says this, your number, say this, do this. And then there's the art. So teams is an acronym that I believe another thing that the Lord laid on me many, many years ago. So one of the things that I've been fortunate enough to do is I'm the personal functional medicine doctor for a, an Olympic gold medal wrestler. And I got to run all of his labs on him when I travel with him actually cooked all of his meals so he could make weight. An amazing man of God, His name is Jordan Burrows, he's more unquestionably he's a guy from New Jersey. He's unquestionably the best wrestler to ever live the United States. So when I was around him, I got to be on some of the best coaches in the world, literally in the world. So the team's acronym landed on me. So T stands for thoughts. So when I have my check ins with our patients, we walk through we they say, Alright, let's let's let's talk through our steps. So T is thoughts. A friend of mine, Dr. Daniel, amen. talks about ants, automatic negative thoughts. He says we have about 87,000 thoughts a day, and roughly 80% of those are negative. And roughly 80% of those are the same thoughts we had yesterday. So we have to come in and talk about Where's your thought process how how is that doing and shoot me straight? I mean, here's the thing when people hire us to be their clinician, we don't want you know, lollipops and rainbows. We want the facts. So we jump into that. He then is eating and supplementation. Nutrition is food. I grew up in a farming community and I have a huge hard for farmers and ranchers. And I love to teach people about food, how to prepare food, my mom. There's actually no such thing anymore. But my mom was a home ec major. So my mom is 100% German, and a home ec major, which means her middle name is Betty Crocker. So So I mean, I had a red cellar in my house, if I had beef growing up, we butchered the cow. If I if we had chicken, I was at my aunt's place, butchering the chickens, I'm a huge appreciation for food, and how food can be healing. And I also understand there can be a huge emotional component around food. You know, most people food is a drug, it's a socially accepted drug. So we try to recreate healthy a healthy relationship with food. One thing that we don't do in our clinic is we don't do crash diets. We don't do fad diets, we don't do crazy restrictive diets, because they're not sustainable. Yeah, our goal is take a person from where they are, and make it sustainable through their life. So we teach them how to shop, what to eat, how to prepare, how to have things on hand. So that's eating. We do use very specific supplementation in our protocols as a supplement. And it's called a supplement for a reason. It supplements a healthy diet. So we use very specific supplementation. And then A is accountability. I will simply ask, you know, David, if you're on my clients, I would say, David, let's figure out something that I can hold you accountable to over the next couple of weeks that you know will move the needle closer to where you need to be from a health and wellness standpoint. So I grew up, I'm an ex football and basketball player. And I can tell you in the times in my life where I've accomplished some of the greatest things. I've had a coach beside me. And I didn't always like that coach. By the way. There were 6:30am basketball practices. And there were two a day football practices, yet there was an agreement at the beginning of an endpoint. And what we did is we locked elbows. And we walked through it through the good times to the bad. And what they did is they revealed in me potential right so that's where I got it from, I got it from my high school football and basketball coaches. And, and I realized that it's not all lollipops and rainbows. So that accountability, knowing that someone's alongside of you, that may see something in you that you may not see yet in yourself. And instead of giving you a fish, we're going to teach you how to fish. So that accountability part I love I love when people can be vulnerable. And also to know that I'm not going to condemn them if they didn't be perfect. There's this, I seem to attract a lot of perfectionist mindsets. These people are like, man, there's no there's no gray, it's black or white. And I go, I'm going to teach you a word that's going to change your life. And they're like, okay, Dr. Gray, what's the word? I said? It's grace. You need to learn it yourself, Grace. And they're like, Huh, so and what I learned from those people is typically something was taken from them against their will at some point in time in their life. So they said, Never again, Will anyone have that control, I'll have everything put together. So there's results
David Sandstrom 42:50
Well, you know, perfectionism can absolutely be a blocking factor of health, it's very stress producing. And then that could be for some people the big issue, producing a chronic cortisol drip. This this, this sympathetic reaction in the nervous system that's preventing their body from functioning and healing and repairing the way it wants to.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 43:10
Exactly. Yep. So So, take take food, for example. You know, they're like, Oh, I have this very stringent thing I'll say sometimes, like, Okay, so what, what, what, what is your body craving for food? And they're like, a, like, piece of chocolate cake. And I said, go ahead and have a piece. Yeah. Ah, I would never do that. Well, why? Because I would never want anyone to say that I did something wrong. Interesting, where does that come from? So we allow those things. So accountability is probably one of my favorite things. Because it allows us to get raw, it allows us to get to the root, and also to walk and work through that component. And a lot of a lot of our patients I would say, are saved or they believe in Jesus Christ, yet they may not be free, and have that kind of freedom in Christ, as you know, bought and paid by the blood of the Lamb. And that's, that's a, that's a process. And I love to be able to walk people through that because they think that they have these things that are with them.
David Sandstrom 44:01
Well, you know, salvation can be can be had in a few moments, when we put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ. But wholeness takes a lifetime.
Unknown Speaker 44:10
So true. That's so true. And it's a journey and it's not a destination, we get to enjoy the journey. Yeah, so M stands for movement. We don't have our people sign up for the Twin Cities marathon though movement is important. Whether that movement is just a simply go for walk this lady yesterday, I said, when's the last time you took your dogs for a walk around the block? I don't know. Go for it. It's make you feel better. Yeah. So So and some people do more advanced moving. I actually have some professional iron Iron Man triathletes as clients of ours. Yeah. So it's different. We there's a different level but movement, we are designed to move and a lot of there's a lot of guilt around this. I have a lot of people that are like weight loss resistant women with thyroid issues, and they work out like crazy. They'll say to me, Dr. Greg, here's my diet. Here's my workout program, and here's me, why can't I lose weight. So there's this guilt about if I just burn more calories and I do all this stuff. So sometimes we have to give them some grace. I think I've said this before grace, around that conversation,
David Sandstrom 45:07
I hear I hear a recurring theme here Dr. Greg.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 45:10
Right, it's so good. And then and then SS sleep. If you are not sleeping, you are not going to heal. And it this is. So for example, there's a book called Spark. And in this book, it said the number one cause of breast cancer in women is the lack of darkness, because of what it does to the melatonin circuit. So as little as a single red light from a smoke detector on your ceiling, can disrupt your sleep, every single cell in your body has photoreceptors on it. So your and I think I actually saw that one of your sponsors on one of your shows was a blackout Shade is perfect as your bedroom must be completely pitch black. So we're talking no alarm clocks, we're talking no street lights, no nightlights, no bathroom lights, is so there's there's always low hanging fruit to get well, and we talk a lot about these things that cost nothing.
David Sandstrom 46:04
But you know, as an airline pilot, I sleep in a lot of hotel rooms, and they all have smoke detectors. And some of them are literally strobe lights. You know, how are you supposed to sleep when you've got this strobe light going out on the ceiling. So I bring some black electrical tape with me. And I'll take those things over before I go to sleep. Because that can really interfere with with some effective rest. And you know, I have to show up rested, if I'm not rested, I have to call in fatigued, will legally not allowed to fly fatigued for good reason. You don't want your pilot showing up with no sleep. You know you want him you know maybe not 100% but at least a learn enough to perform his skills adequately. So I've learned a few things about making the room dark, you know, I bring a clip what I the the curtains I clipped together so there's no light coming through the cracks in the curtains, I take a bath towel and I roll it up and I put it underneath a crack in the door. And I make the room as dark and as quiet as I can if it's too noisy outside I have a noisemaker that I listened to. So sleep is important.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 47:02
In that book, they talked about the two pieces. So like the very low hanging fruit, you just gave some amazing things that cost absolutely nothing. Yeah, complete darkness and ambient noise. So I sleep with a sleep mask every single night. Some people that have autoimmune diseases are very sensitive eyes, especially if they have different autoimmune diseases. Like my wife cannot handle the pressure of a sleep mask on her eye. But in this study, they said a sleep mask and white noise were like the two biggest bang for the bucks that people could use. In all reality. You're talking like 40 or 50 bucks worth of stuff that would last. I've had my sleep mask now for probably six or seven years. Yeah, throw in the wash every couple weeks. So sleep is clutch. Now, one thing that I seen a lot of people is Dr. Greg, I wake up at x time. And it's common, because a lot of what I talk about my clients is something called drainage. And we don't have time to go into drainage today. But drainage is how your body gets rid of things. And 2am to 4am. If you're a listener and to him before him seems to be a time that you're awake. What I have found is that directly correlates with the liver and the liver being able to move products. I believe it's a little bit more awake during that time. But in many cases when we up regulate liver function, these people are like oh my gosh, I slept like a baby now. But sleep is clutch. If you're not, you're not resting. Yeah. So that's the team's protocols. We talk about that on each of our visits so that we know that we're touching the bases. Yeah. The whole picture, right what it takes to get excellent.
David Sandstrom 48:22
That's a really good structure. I love it. So you know, there's so much to talk about, I'm gonna have to have you back on this. This is a great way to be really, I look forward to doing that. Anyway, so if someone wants to get a hold of you, how can they get in touch with you?
Dr. Greg Mongeon 48:35
That's a great question. So just got our website. So it's DrGreg dot health. So D R. G R E G.h e a l t h. And if you're curious about if you would be a patient that I would accept, I do, and have done for many, many years, I do a free discovery call. And I do that for a couple of reasons. Number one, I wish I could fix everybody, but I can't. So that call gives me an opportunity to understand you your story, your support system, and your willingness to get well. It also gives you an opportunity to ask me some questions about me. I again, I wish I could fix everybody. And that's why I do it for free. Just so that there's no obligation that people can say hey, I have this conversation. And if there's a connection, there's a connection, and if there's not, no harm, no foul, so go check us out at Dr. Greg dot health.
David Sandstrom 49:20
Excellent. All right. Well, thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate you being here. pleasure meeting you.
Dr. Greg Mongeon 49:26
Right on. This was so good. Thanks, David.
David Sandstrom 49:29
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