Episode 44: Having a Hotter, Greener Sex Life with Dr. Ann Haiden

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Hear Dr. Haiden and Dr. Patti discuss the latest findings in the field of integrative medicine, and how they might relate to sexual libido and mood. Find out some basic things to look for in wondering if you’ve been “affected” by the environment, in terms of your sexual performance. What areas should you be concerned about? Can you test yourself to see if your hormones are in balance? How would you know if they are out of balance? What other factors might come into consideration if you are not quite “in the mood” the way you want to be? Is there hope for reversing the effect of living in today’s environment? Dr. Haiden feels there is, and offers suggestions that you can practice at home, as well as tests you can request from your doctor. If you feel that there’s more to you than you presently have to offer a partner, and you are not quite sure why you can’t find it… it might just be that this show will open your eyes to many new possibilities! Dr. Ann’s blog, www.gogreenlivehealthy.com, fills in where this show leaves off to give listeners much to hope for and lots of inspiration and knowledge, to clean up their lives inside and out… and along the way, enjoy better, hotter, greener sex!

Transcript

Woman: This program is intended for mature audiences only.

[musical interlude]

Dr. Patti Taylor: In this amazing show, find out some of the ways you can enhance your love life and your libido and make your surroundings more environmentally safe all at the same time.

Ann Haiden: The thing that I've come to realize is that we're very much part of the eco-system. The important thing really is as it turns out, to bring simplicity back to things so that we can get to the root level of enjoyment. Now, there's estrogen, there's testosterone, there's progesterone, we've probably all heard of those, and it's that complex of those that contributes to libido. What we've ended up with, in a way, is a chemical [xx] that is too heavily weighted in estrogen.

The really good thing about some of these chemicals actually is that if you stop taking them, they go away pretty quickly. So I like to focus sometimes on what you can do because it's not depressing, it's encouraging. So there are things that we can just simply change our way. For instance, your mattress could have foam in it that is acting as an estrogen disturber or your dust may have the same from various plastics. Or, the house remodel that you just did maybe emitting some chemicals that can be acting as estrogen disturber.

[musical interlude]

Dr. Patti Taylor: Welcome to the “Expanded Lovemaking Show.” I'm your host, Dr. Patti Taylor, of ExpandedLovemaking.com, and I teach you how to give and receive way more pleasure than you ever dream possible. Today on the show, we are talking about having a hotter, greener sex life. I have to laugh. First, I never dreamed I would put those two words, hot and green, in the same sentence for our show [sp]. And then, I started wondering, “Well, there must be a connection.” I found out there is.

So here to tell us all just how much more of one there is is our guest, Dr. Ann Haiden. Dr. Ann Haiden, welcome.

Ann Haiden: Hello. It’s so happy to be here.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Hi. May I call you Ann?

Ann Haiden: You sure can.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, well, thank you, Ann. So let me tell you a little bit about Dr. Haiden. She's an osteopathic doctor, board certified in internal medicine. She was motivated to become a doctor by her own health challenges. She was finally able to regain her health with an integrated approach that focused on the roots of the problem. She's now in private practice offering an integrated and progressive functional medicine approach. She has a website and blog that discuss some of the very innovative approaches to medicine that she uses and she's located in Kentfield, California.

I think our listeners will enjoy this show because it's a real eye opener about how the world around us can influence what happens in the privacy of our own bedrooms, hey, even in our own bodies. Dr. Haiden will tell us just some of the ways you maybe being affected and, possibly, some of the little things that you can do to have a hotter and greener and yummier sex life at the same time. So let's get started. Where do we start on going green and bringing the environment, making that connection to our sex life? I mean, I think hormones, but what do you think?

Ann Haiden: I think hormones, obviously, have a lot to do with it and that’s the way we usually think. But I think that the thing that I've come to realize is that we're very much part of the eco-system. The important really is, as it turns out, to bring simplicity back to things so that we can get to the root level of enjoyment.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, great. So if you talk to most people--myself included--their reaction might be, “Well, I'm already doing things and I want to simplify my life.” How would I know that I could simplify? What would be my options? I mean, things seem pretty simple to me already.

Ann Haiden: There are a couple of levels. I was fitting [sp] a little one, I said simple but it's a two-sided coin. In a way, the world and how chemicals in our world act like estrogen and the different hormonal chemicals that we have in our body, is complicated in a way that is way beyond our comprehension. We haven’t figured it out yet. The good side of that is that our bodies are designed for us not to have to think about it if we just do the right thing. So when I say simple, one of the things I'm talking about is going back to simple products that haven’t been chemically made, that our body actually recognizes.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Well, I just want to say I'm here in Dr. Ann’s office. So it's very exciting, we're in a real doctor’s office. I want to admit I was being, too, because I think life has gotten very complicated, not simple at all. So would you please go on with what you were just saying.

Ann Haiden: Again, I think, going back to simplicity is great on a couple of levels. You know, there's some hype around whether products that we use are healthy for us, whether they have chemicals but that’s not also the entire thing. We just live in a really, really complicated, hectic world where we even have to talk stress which is really important, I think, when it comes to personal fulfillment including our sex lives.

Dr. Patti Taylor: I think you're absolutely right. So I'm going to kind of narrow down now a little bit into a few of the topics that are probably of interest to people on our show. We get it in which our perhaps libido and emotions and what we, as listeners, can do to recognize it and perhaps make it better. So let's start with libido. How do these chemicals affect our libido?

Ann Haiden: I think libido is obviously complicated, but let's take the chemical portion of it, the hormonal portion of that. The chemicals in our environment and products act sort of like estrogen. Now, there's estrogen, there's testosterone, there's progesterone, we've probably all heard of those. It's that complex of those that contributes to libido. What we've ended up with, in a way, is a chemical [xx] that is too heavily weighted in estrogen which--even men have estrogen and even women have testosterone. So you could see how that could be important.

Dr. Patti Taylor: So you're saying we live in a world where there are a lot of hormones in our food and in our environment and they are throwing us hormonally out of whack.

Ann Haiden: That’s exactly right. That’s exactly right.

Dr. Patti Taylor: So what might be an example of that? OK?

Ann Haiden: A good example of that, I'll use one that’s been in the news a lot lately which is bisphenol A, but there's others like phthalates. I know these are big complicated names, but these two particular items, bisphenol A is a plastic byproduct. So we've all heard of the Nalgene bottle or various other hard plastic bottles or even the linings of food cans, for instance, leach out bisphenol A, which is what's called an estrogen disturber. That’s one example.

Another example is phthalates, which is something that is used to make plastics soft. So your shower curtain, for instance, has phthalates in it. There’ve been lots of studies that have looked at what's called “body burdens,” how much of these various chemicals are in us and almost everyone of us, to the last head, has some of these chemicals.

Dr. Patti Taylor: I admit to having hard plastic bottles and has taken a lot of showers, those soft shower curtains. So if you're a guy, is it that you're getting let's say--let's just go to a man’s libido, first of all, who's getting too much estrogen. Is that possible, and what would that look like? How would he know? What would be some of these telltale signs perhaps? Would he just have a potbelly and be cranky [laughs] or would he not be getting it up?

Ann Haiden: It probably depends on the guy, [laughs] but it could be subtle. There's this kind of rampant idea that men are becoming testosterone-deficient as they get older and this may have something to do with estrogens levels. We don’t have this all figured out yet, it could be just a lack of general libido. It could be, again, size as some people would argue that they feel like their testicles have changed in size or feel. It's hard to say but I think that one of the most obvious things is how people feel the libido and this issue of testosterone decreasing. Some would even say prostate problems.

Dr. Patti Taylor: So I'm guessing that just going out and getting tested be the thing you would want to do? I'm guessing that just taking testosterone, if you're a guy, is sort of putting a band [xx] on the problem.

Ann Haiden: I think that just taking testosterone can be putting a [xx] on the problem. The really good thing about some of these chemicals, actually, is that if you stop taking them, they go away pretty quickly. So I like to focus sometimes on what you can do because it's not depressing, it's encouraging. So there are things that we can just simply change our ways.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, good. I'd like to focus on that, too. But I think let's just walk through some of the things that can happen and then we'll get to that. I think our listeners will want to listen to this whole show to make sure they do hang on because we will actually wind up with a lot about what we can do.

So we are going to take a short break. This is Dr. Patti Taylor and I'm with Dr. Ann Haiden, and we will be right back. You can learn more about Dr. Haiden at her website, www.DrHaiden.com. So please, stay with us.

[podcast break]

Dr. Patti Taylor: So we're back. I'm Dr. Patti Taylor and we're talking to Dr. Ann Haiden about how to green your sex life. You were telling me privately that there weren’t really a lot of test that you can do, so I guess, where do we go from here?

Ann Haiden: I think that they are the usual test, the hormonal test, that we are all aware of. Technically speaking, there are tests that you can have done for various chemical byproducts in your body but they're not commonly done although they are available. In this instance, when there's something that you can do, sometimes you can use those standard tests and go straight towards trying to change your ways.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Now, could a man also be getting overly emotional because he's got too much estrogen or be hormonally out of balance?

Ann Haiden: I think that that’s probably true. We've probably all heard of andropause [laughs] and I think it's true. Again, that’s a particular time when men become alarmed. You know, “Oh, my God, what's going on here?” You now, men don’t like to go to the doctor but when they do, sometimes that’s question and so that’s when we look into hormones--cut down on that hard plastic bottle of water [xx] and, I'm running out of Kleenex. [laughs] But that’s a good time to check at testosterone level, but men can also be checked for estrogen and progesterone.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, good. So let's talk about women now. How would excess estrogen in the environment impact a woman’s libido?

Ann Haiden: I think that it comes earlier and more obvious in women in that it likely has something as well to do with premenstrual syndrome. So everybody who's ever had premenstrual syndrome [laughs] or anything close to it or anybody who's been a partner of somebody with PMS, certainly, knows that there's a lot of emotional ups and downs that goes with that, and discomfort, frank discomfort. It can affect periods; it can affect mood; it can affect probably the likelihood of getting pregnant. The unique thing about women is that women carry babies and what we're finding that’s really concerning is that these chemical issues can end up in offspring.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, so to have a hotter, greener sex life then, you would want to be doing what? You'd want to be aware that it's not just you, it's not just that you're on a some kind of necessarily a downslide. It could be nothing related to you. It could be that the environment you're in is having a major affect. Is there any way we might know the difference?

Ann Haiden: I think that there isn't a way that you can particularly tell the difference. But I think that there's a wide variety of testing available for women at various stages of their life that tells about the cycling of the various hormones. One of the things that we commonly see is that there is this big peak of estrogen far and above what it normally we would expect it to be.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Have you seen a lot of women who have worked with their environmental impact profiles regained a much more functional sex life and relationship life as a result?

Ann Haiden: I do, and I think the reason is a couple fold. One is that hormones are smoothed out into a more natural pattern. Some people choose to also use some extra progesterone; we’d probably all heard about estrogen dominance. I think an equally or even more powerful approach is to also just make sure that the environment is contributing appropriately or not to the estrogen levels. This also just greatly impacts mood, which I think, really impacts a fulfilling sex life.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, great. What kinds of things do you think people could be eating or drinking that they should be aware of that might be getting in the way, in particular, that might be dangerous. We've talked about the plastics and some of the chemicals and, you know, don’t walk through a farming where they're spraying things. But what else might be something that they might not be aware of, that might be in their common environment, that might be something they can be aware of?

Ann Haiden: I think one thing that people aren't aware of--I'm kind of aware of eating organic foods now. What we're not necessarily aware of is other things in our houses, for instance. For instance, your mattress could have foam in it that is acting as an estrogen disturber, or your dust may have the same from various plastics. The house remodel that you just did maybe emitting some chemicals that can be acting as estrogen disturbers.

Dr. Patti Taylor: So the old saying that, “If you don’t get a divorce after a remodel, then--you know what I mean, a remodel is likely to lead to a divorce, it's more than just life’s tale.

Ann Haiden: That’s true but I want to bring up one other really, really important thing and that is body products that we use. So everything from hair gels to shampoos to lotions can be full of these types of estrogen-type chemicals.

Dr. Patti Taylor: That’s really good for you to point out. I think if a lot of people knew that they were smearing estrogen all over themselves every time they put on a body cream, I think they just would like that information. If they realize that was affecting the kind of lovemaking they will going to have that night. I mean, to have that informed decision-making. You do actually have a blog, GoGreenLiveHealthy.com which, as I understand, tells people what resources they can use to insure that they don’t put on things that are going to be covering them in estrogen or all the wrong thing.

Ann Haiden: That’s right. It's kind of a combination blog, which is informative, and it gives a little bit of my thoughts on things. But it's also a resource so that rather than feeling deprived, you can go to a place and get some ideas about how to simply do it differently.

Dr. Patti Taylor: I'm laughing. I flashed back to this time about many, many years ago with my partner. I just put on a tiny bit of progesterone cream and I was just going to touch him and he freaked out. I said, “What's the matter? It's just a little bit of progesterone cream?” And he went, “That’s what they put on sex criminals--sex offenders--for the rest of their lives when they get out of prison. I don’t want you to touch me.” It's like, people only knew. Right? They might be having those reactions. So anyway, back to your blog. There are all kinds of things that you talked about that could be helping us to make wise choices.

Ann Haiden: That’s right, and I think the most important thing there is that we're going to be modeling through this how to do the right thing for a while. The most important thing, I think, is to learn how to read labels. [laughs] I know it sounds simple, but in a way, it is simple. Look for that organic label and, as far as plastics, I like to say a saying, “Be free of [xx] and no to Nalgene because those are the plastics that you want to avoid.”

Dr. Patti Taylor: I totally agree with you. I read the label on pretty much everything I buy, much to my own shock, so I practice what I preach. I want to know what I'm putting on my body as well as what I'm putting in my body. Anyway, we're going to take another break. This is Dr. Patti Taylor, and we're talking to Dr. Ann Haiden about having a hotter greener sex life. You can find out more about Dr. Haiden at www.DrHaiden.com and also her blog where she talks about all her favorite resources, GoGreenLiveHealthy.com. So please, stay with us.

[podcast break]

Dr. Patti Taylor: We're back and this is Dr. Patti Taylor and I'm with Dr. Ann Haiden. Before I go on, I just want to say, we are kicking a survey. So please help [xx] sponsors by taking a short anonymous online survey at PersonalLifeMedia.com. You can click on the Listeners Survey Ad and have your voice count. It's on my Show Page at Episode Pages, and I thank you so much for that. Now I was really thrilled when I found out that a lot of this environmental impact on us is reversible. Would you like to say more about that?

Ann Haiden: Yes. I think that it's very encouraging to find that there's something you can do. Certainly, there's a limit to how far out into the world that you can reach, but a lot of us, we live a lot of our lives in our houses and immediate spaces so that there's a lot we can do. We can address our homes and we can address things we put on ourselves, the use of products. It's harder to implement the general air, but the more people who are aware, the more that will come.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK. So can you give us some specific examples? If I, today, was an average listener, who this is the first time I ever heard this information and I thought, “You know, my sex life is kind of boring. I probably do have too much estrogen in me as well as every other thing has ever been manufactured just like Dr. Patti does except she's had it a little earlier than me. I'd like to reverse some stuff and I'm going to just go organic right now, go green, read all my labels and just really do it right.” How long will it take for me to start noticing some differences?

Ann Haiden: It depends. Some things that you do--if you change, for instance, your beauty routine, your hair gel, various lotions that you use, things that your body is obviously reacting to. You can sometimes see changes in those things in as little as two or three weeks, other things could take a longer period of time.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK. So what are the things you think are most likely to affect our libido as far as positive changes we could make? Are there foods that you particularly recommend that would be good or would it be hair products and gels and body creams?

Ann Haiden: I think it's a combination of those. Foods are interesting in that they help your body process the various hormones. Your body actually sees estrogen in a way as a toxin that it has to process, it's interesting. And foods that particularly help with that process, with the enzymes that do that include things like broccoli and kale and what's called the brassica vegetables. But in general, you wan to eat a good diet. As far as products, there are many products out there--and this is just increasing by the day, it is so exciting. There are many products that are genuinely getting rid of this estrogenic problem. The easiest thing to do is look for the organic label of the whole product and not just the individual ingredients in the product.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK, great. So that’s really something anybody can do anywhere. What are some other things other than estrogen that we could be on the look out for that could really help our sex life take a turn for the better in this complex world where we want to simplify?

Ann Haiden: I think, again, getting back to the idea of simplicity, I think, that we live in such a harried world. We don’t get enough sleep and people are relying on caffeine just to get through their day. I don’t know about anybody else, but I find that, for myself and certainly for my patients, that mood has an awful lot to do with a lot of things. So when you start to pay attention to how everything in the world fits together and where your place in that world is, then you can start to put some sanity and some calmness and that allows, I think, people to show through. Which means that people are then in a position where they can give and, I think, in our personal lives, giving gives a lot of enjoyment.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Thank you for that thought. I guess there's nothing you can take for simplicity, is there?

Ann Haiden: No.

Dr. Patti Taylor: No, it's all about taking away, isn't it?

Ann Haiden: It is a lot about taking away. But taking away, not the pleasure but the impediment.

Dr. Patti Taylor: Yes, so that what's left is just the two of you or just yourself and the room to be with your partner and not their with all the mood influences and chemicals and things you never asked for but got anyway.

Ann Haiden: That’s right. I think that people are truly liberated, their life is liberated when their health is liberated. I think that this is just all part of it.

Dr. Patti Taylor: OK. So I really think that this is very inspiring and I think that I'm guessing a lot of our listeners have already gotten started on the path. Like me, before talking to you, just never really made the connection how much this might be affecting my sex life. Are there any major, major topics--we probably won't have time to cover today--but besides the estrogen and the plastics, are there any major, major topics that really might be affecting our libido that we could just be thinking about?

Ann Haiden: Boy, that’s a hard one. I think that there are so many things. The whole system really needs to work together in order for our sex lives to come together the right way, so there are so many things. That’s such a big question.

Dr. Patti Taylor: It is a big question. Well, what can I say? Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. I guess, I would say I love your blog. I've been reading it and your suggestions for hair dye that doesn’t have a lot of heavy lead in it and how to clean your house without getting exposed to fumes. The thing that might wind up in the bedroom is actually pretty exciting to me.

Ann Haiden: Well, thank you. I like doing that part because to me it's so much more fulfilling to be able to offer a solution.

Dr. Patti Taylor: You're really passionate about it and you're someone who's healed yourself and I respect that tremendously. So we're almost out of time, but before we go, I have one final question for you. What is this one thing that totally inspires you and fulfills you about and that you're absolutely passionate in the work that you do?

Ann Haiden: I think that the answer to that has got to be to give. I've learned so much in my journey that it's really fun now to give back.

Dr. Patti Taylor: That’s really beautiful, and I know you and I know how passionate you are and committed you are to giving to your patients and to the community. I know our listeners, I'm sure, can't wait to see your blog. So I'll just say it one more time, GoGreenLiveHealthy.com. We've been talking with Dr. Ann Haiden and you can visit her website also, DrHaiden.com. So thank you so much for joining us today.

Ann Haiden: Thank you. It's been a pleasure to be here.

Dr. Patti Taylor: It's been really wonderful. So this brings us to end of our show. Thank you for listening. Please send me email at [email protected]. For texts and transcripts of the show and other shows on the Personal Life Media Network, please visit our website at PersonalLifeMedia.com. Come post a  [xx] comment if you wish. If you haven’t already, please be sure to subscribe to the “Expanded Lovemaking Show” as well to get automatic updates as soon as they become available. Please visit me, Dr. Patti Taylor at ExpandedLovemaking.com. This is your host, Dr. Patti Taylor. That’s all for now. I remain yours in ever expanded lovemaking and I'll see you next week.

Woman: Find more great shows like this on PersonalLifeMedia.com.

[music fades out]