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Fasting, Hormones & Menopause: Why Women Need A Different Approach To Men with Dr Mindy Pelz

by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee   /  March 8, 2023

CAUTION: This podcast discusses fasting, and its advice may not be suitable for anyone with an eating disorder. If you have an existing health condition or are taking medication, always consult your healthcare practitioner before going for prolonged periods without eating. 

Today’s podcast could transform the lives of many women – but it’s a conversation that is just as relevant for men. My guest is Mindy Pelz, a nutrition expert, an author and a pioneer on the subject of women’s health, hormones and fasting.

Fasting itself is a topic we’ve spoken about on many occasions on this podcast, as it can have many potential benefits for our health and longevity. But when we talk about fasting and health in general, we often presume that men and women are going to respond in the same way. But as Mindy explains, men and women are fundamentally different biologically and hormonally, which means they may need to adopt different approaches.

Mindy’s new book Fast Like A Girl – which really is a fantastic read -explains that distinction and goes on to provide the protocols women can use, so fasting works in their favour. It’s billed as a women’s guide to using fasting to burn fat, boost energy and balance hormones. But I’d argue that it gives us a whole lot more than that.

As we begin this conversation, Mindy sets out the key hormonal differences between men and women. With men governed primarily by testosterone, released at regular intervals and doses throughout the day. Women, however, are led by a symphony of oestrogen, testosterone and progesterone in amounts that vary across an average 28-day menstrual cycle. 

Mindy talks us through what exactly is going on hormonally during the four phases of a woman’s cycle and how this makes women feel physically, cognitively and emotionally. She explains how women can tailor everything from their working habits to their workouts, their social life to their diet, to better match their hormone profile at each stage of the cycle – this approach can help women feel more in control. We discuss the benefits for conditions like polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), infertility and irregular cycles.

We also discuss the different stages of women’s lives – reproductive, perimenopausal and post-menopausal – and how different types and lengths of fasting can be optimised in each stage.

But this conversation is not just about health. The fact that women’s confidence, motivation, cognition and energy levels will rise and dip throughout the month has major implications for the workplace and society in general. We are living in a world where half the population are experiencing this vital hormonal flux – and it’s a world largely set up and managed by men who don’t understand it.

This is not just an empowering listen for women, it is for all of us – partners, brothers, fathers, sons, and friends. I hope you enjoy listening.

Disclaimer: The content in the podcast and on this webpage is not intended to constitute or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.*

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Watch the video version of this interview – click below.

Connect with Dr Pelz:

Website      Instagram      Facebook    

YouTube      Podcast

Dr Pelz’s books:

Fast Like a Girl: A Woman’s Guide to Using the Healing Power of Fasting to Burn Fat, Boost Energy, and Balance Hormones

The Menopause Reset: Get Rid of Your Symptoms and Feel Like Your Younger Self Again

The Reset Factor: 45 Days to Transforming Your Health by Repairing Your Gut

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#129 Why Women Are More Likely to Develop Alzheimer’s with Dr Lisa Mosconi

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*DISCLAIMER: Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on the podcast or on my website.

†Disclosure: All books marked with a † are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We take part in Amazon’s affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon’s website. You are not charged any extra by using these links to purchase books.

Dr. Rangan Chatterjee MbChB, BSc (Hons), MRCP, MRCGP