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Episode 30: Ozone Therapy, Autoimmunity, Toxicity, and EMF Insights with Dr. Charles Penick, MD

Updated: Feb 21

Podcast Drop Date: 2/21/2024

In this episode of the Functional Medicine Foundations podcast, Dr. Charles Penick, MD, explores the diverse applications of Ozone Therapy and its relevance in addressing the rising issues of autoimmunity and toxicity. Delving into the science behind Ozone Therapy, Dr. Penick highlights its transformative potential for overall well-being. Additionally, he discusses the often-overlooked impact of EMF radiation on health, providing insights into mitigation strategies. Whether you're a health enthusiast or seeking functional medicine insights, this episode offers valuable information for a healthier life. Tune in as Dr. Penick guides listeners through Ozone Therapy, autoimmunity, toxicity, and the influence of EMF radiation on health. It's time to empower yourself with knowledge for a vibrant and resilient lifestyle. Hit play now!



Amber Warren, PA-C: Welcome to the Functional Medicine Foundations podcast, where we explore root cause medicine, engage in conversation with functional and integrative medicine experts, and build community with like minded health seekers. I'm your host, Amber Warren. Let's dig deeper. Welcome back everybody. I'm back here again with Doctor Charles Penick. He ever get to practice together here at FMI center for Optimal Health in Eagle, Idaho? I'm so thankful to have you here. Thank you for joining us this evening. Doctor Charles Penick is a visionary medical leader who specializes in functional medicine, regenerative medicine, and detox, delivering personalized and cutting edge health care solutions. He is passionate about setting the trajectory for a strong and healthy life while promoting true vitality. Doctor Charles Penick has an extraordinary breadth of knowledge and expertise, extending far beyond his rigorous medical training with extensive proficiency in nutritional health, detoxification, medical fitness and health optimization, he is at the forefront of the latest scientific technologies and breakthroughs, ensuring his patients receive unparalleled care and treatment that is not a thorough enough bio. It does not lay into what your subspecialties and areas of expertise are.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: I don't think I wrote that, so thank you for whoever did.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Someone talented that gets to work with us did write that. We know that, um. That's awesome. So tonight we wanted to talk a little bit about a treatment that we haven't really touched on in our podcast much. Well, actually, I guess our interview with Doctor Dan Bruce, he actually did talk about ozone that he's using in his integrative dentistry practice. That's awesome. Which is cool. Yeah. But, um, I know we're doing some really cool things here in Eagle and New Modality. So what is ozone? Let's just start with that. Yeah. What is ozone.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: So um, it's naturally occurring to a small degree in the environment actually. Um, we you may have heard the terms the ozone layer, um, any time electricity through the form of lightning actually strikes the ground or there's a bolt of electricity, I should say, um, you there's actually the creation of ozone. And what actually that electricity does is it splits oxygen atoms really at oxygen molecules, I should say. Um, so we breathe O2 and our body can use O2, um, and it requires O2 to live to keep the cells healthy and alive. Um, O3 is a much less stable molecule. Um, it has three atoms. And so that means that there's one extra electron, um, that, that doesn't have. Well, you know, if we remember a little bit of our science from, from maybe, uh, you know, high school or college, uh, it's kind of seeking to, to do something. It wants to be active. It won't rest really in that state. So it's a it's a unstable molecule, but it is a very, very stable, actually free radical. So in this case it is a free radical that causes, uh, promotes healthy growth within the body. Think of it as a positive stressor. So we don't we can't really breathe it in and use it. Our lungs can't use it. But pretty much um, there's there's numerous applications to the body. And I'll talk about some of those.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Um, but we often talk about free radicals, um, damaging cells right in the body. And this, this process of antioxidant activity and, and pro-oxidant, we need a little bit of both. Um, our body uses oxidative oxidation to kill off bad things in the body. Um, and our healthy cells have the ability to, to actually withstand damage from oxidative free radicals by certain, uh, enzymatic processes that they have. So what's so unique is that ozone, when it comes in, it does not damage cells. But what it does is makes them more robust. So think of it as a workout. Um, if you go and you hit the gym, you're actually breaking down muscle fibers if you're lifting weights. Um, and that, uh, that stress on the muscles causes, uh, certain signals to the muscle to allow it to grow and make you stronger. So ozone is the same, uh, basically the same application to your healthy cells. Yeah. Um, damage cells like cancer cells, cells infected, um, or that are, that are dying what we call senescent or zombie cells, um, viruses, bacteria, even some parasites, some parasites are susceptible to this oxidative, very stable oxidative molecule called ozone. And so it will kill anything that really does not belong in the body while it promotes, um, the health of the cell and really decreases inflammation. So, um, that's a really, uh, special aspect of it, so.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Well, who wouldn't? I mean, like, it sounds like everybody could benefit, right? Yeah. Who are, like, the best candidates for this kind of therapy?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. So, you know, there is a, um, there's a number of researchers out there who I mean, this has been around for quite some time. So let me mention really quick that, um, even Nikola Tesla, uh, did a lot of research with ozone, and I cannot remember right now off the top of my head, who was the first person to use it for medical purposes. But there's been no that. Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Fired. Next podcast interviewee. Please.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Right. Yeah.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah I did once upon a time know the name, but I'm forgetting his name. But, uh, whoever it was is brilliant. I. Because the applications are so are so far reaching. And I think of two researchers off the top of my head who have been very beneficial in forwarding this science. One is Doctor Leardini out of Austria, and he he pioneered what we call the ten pass or multi pass where you are giving, basically drawing and returning blood to the body to allow a lot of ozonated blood to enter the body. Uh, really neat therapy. And he has poured so much, so much research into this approach. Um, from actually I mean the one that was one of the, one of the studies that was the most impressive for me was actually the measuring of mitochondrial activity or efficiency. Um, prior to and then following application of ozone therapy. Um, and I'll actually mention that really quick. I was going to move on, but let me just mention the results were astounding. Most of us are operating if we're healthy, somewhere between 60, maybe up to 80%, but that's that's actually rare. More more so closer to 60% of our mitochondrial efficiency. Now, that being said, your body always wants to have a little bit of reserve, which is a wise thing. Um, however, we shouldn't be operating at a 5060 percentile. That's just not. And someone who's chronically ill or has mitochondrial dysfunction will be operating lower than that, maybe more like 40%. And this was a study done in Germany. And what was so cool was to see, after the application of ozone, the mitochondrial efficiency efficiency went to 90% or greater and.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Adults or pediatric population.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: This was an adult population.

Amber Warren, PA-C: I figured,

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah, yeah. But you know mitochondria is mitochondria. Yeah. And so, you know, the idea is that it was it was a very powerful stimulant for mitochondrial efficiency. Therefore what you're what you're looking at is if the mitochondria is acting well within the cells, the cells can actually start to turn the tide for whatever they're struggling with, because once the mitochondria is injured, then the cells health will go down and therefore our health will go down. So the thought is through application of ozone, you could correct many. And Doctor Rodney says pretty much any disease process. Um, I do think that we can oversimplify things, but the, the concept is if the cell is healthy, the body will become will know how to fix itself. Right? Absolutely. So he believes that application for even a healthy person on a regular basis is actually encouraged. Um, uh, a couple of times a year, once every six months, he believes, for someone who's in health maintenance. Yeah. Um, and this is just from listening to him talk at a conference, but someone who's ill, his recommendation is to come for 6 to 12 sessions in a row. That could be once a week. Um, twice a week, I generally would say probably, you know, twice a week is is enough. Um, and then if you're going to, you don't need more than that.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. Um, and then he believes that after 6 to 12 sessions, most diseases can have a turn in the tide and be moving back in the right direction. So yeah, pretty cool. Really cool. Um, one other, um, researcher is, uh, Doctor Sylvia menendez, and she's got over four decades of research in Cuba where, um, not doing an IV application, but actually a insufflation. So it can be either vaginal or rectal, um, insufflation and doing that, you can actually get some systemically high levels. Um, and if you do it on a consistent basis after, um, I think it's several weeks, um, maybe 6 to 8 weeks, you're looking at about the same benefit as IV ozone, which is really cool. That is really cool. So down the down the line, if you are consistent with doing it, some of the chronic diseases processes will see a very similar benefit as the IV applications. Um, it is it is not as easy to do. Um, yeah. But it, it does have the benefit. And she in her research they have looked at reversal of diabetes, arthritis, osteo and rheumatoid, um and then numerous other other um disease processes that have been wound healing, chronic wound healing, things like that. So. Wow. Um, yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So cool. So what are the different applications? Okay. So rectally vaginally. Yes. We know I think our most used application here would be the intravenous. Yes. Correct. Yes. Um, I know we're going to be offering, um, ear ozone.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: You got it.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So how do you apply it to the ears.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. So it's a device that looks like a stethoscope that hooks up to the ozone generator. And then we'll we'll pump a certain amount of ozone, and it will go into the ear canal and then absorb into the bloodstream there. So great for, uh, sinuses, great for, uh, throat infections, great for ear infections, um, even lungs. So you're kind of getting that whole head and neck exposure. I would suggest that for, uh, if you're getting as deep as the lungs, IV will be the best, for sure. Um, but just, you know, if you feel something coming on, the a great thing to do would be just do an ear ozone application. And it doesn't take but about 15 minutes or so 15, 20 minutes. Yeah. Um, and great for kids as well. So during a cold and flu season, we were quite busy at my clinic. When we were in Oregon doing that approach. So yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: That's so cool.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So you mentioned a lot of disease states that we and I agree can be reversed with with ozone. But what about people that are like, I don't know if I carry a disease, but I'm just always tired. Yeah. Or I'm trying to upregulate detox. Yes. Or lose weight. What are some of the indications of benefits there.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. So um, I would say chronic fatigue is definitely a common thing that we, we hear here at this clinic. And many people definitely struggle with it. And it can be there's so many, um, possible root causes for that. So hormonal imbalance is a very common, common one. We'll see. You know, low testosterone, low thyroid. Chronic infections is another big one, mitochondrial dysfunction. So people who are experiencing kind of a long haulers type syndrome, chronic Epstein-Barr virus, Lyme mold toxicity, um, any other chronic inflammatory state. So the idea there is of course finding the root cause. But the neat thing about ozone, as I mentioned, is that because it affects the our body at the cellular level by supporting the mitochondria, um, organs that may be having dysfunction or organ systems that may be having dysfunction will start to work better. So let's just say the endocrine system, right. Hormonal imbalances. Um, the thyroid is has some dysfunction or autoimmunity because there is an underlying toxicity there that has caused our body to attack that organ. And really what it's attacking is the toxin, right. Um, that it's trying to get rid of in the organ. And so it's trying to detox, but it's in a way that ends up unfortunately causing, um, what we see as a disease process. And so the idea here is that the ozone can help bring back some of that innate intelligence to the cell on how to clear those toxins. It actually opens up a numerous detox pathways. Um, Nrf2 is one of the most studied with ozone. Um, and it actually recruits stem cells. So healing that organ can take place with new stem cell induction, bringing in blood flow. Um, I mentioned bringing down inflammation. So in form of autoimmunity. So just using the continuum with the thyroid, um autoimmune autoimmune thyroiditis, about one third of the population has. So it's a pretty um pretty big deal. Significant. Significant.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Why do you think. We're seeing so much Hashimoto's or.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD:Um.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: It is because, I mean, and I'm stating this based on my knowledge, right? Yeah. But it is because, um, the the thyroid is very sensitive to toxicity. So specifically we look at mycotoxins, chemical toxins and heavy metals.

Amber Warren, PA-C: What are mycotoxins.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: So mycotoxins are from mold and they're spores released by mold or toxins released by mold that can damage or cause a lot of damage. Honestly, based on the research, brain, kidney, liver, uh, can induce cancer. Um, and just simple ones would be like the thyroid. That's a very common one. So so you can see how ozone application in that situation could be very beneficial because it's opening up detox pathways, recruiting stem cells, calming down the overactive immune system. Um, so, so many, so many reasons that could be useful there or, um, you know, on the on the flip side, let's just say someone's experiencing the chronic fatigue because of an infection like that. They're dealing with a chronic Epstein-Barr virus. The ozone will go in and can kill that virus or even.

Amber Warren, PA-C: By itself without, like the detox protocol, without antimicrobial herbs alone in isolation. Yeah. Isolation.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. So I mean, that's one of the coolest things about it is all of the different things it does. So it downplays inflammation. It opens up detox pathways. Uh, it recruits stem cell activity. It will kill directly kill viruses, bacteria. Um it will I mentioned open up detox pathways. But when we're specifically in thinking heavy metals, mycotoxins and chemical toxins, right, that we're releasing, um, and, and some parasite activity. And we know that because, um, honestly, people who are killing off these things sometimes will have us a symptom of not feeling too well afterward. Um, any sort of detox pathway. If if your detox pathways are blocked, you can have a symptom where you don't feel so well. So our goal is to definitely never get someone to that point. We watch for that. Um, but that die off in some people may be a sign that there's quite a big disturbance with the parasites, um, even with the ozone. So, um, so the idea there is, and it's very rare. I mean, I've done ozone for since 2019. I was on application for clients. Um, I've only had probably one. One that really stands out to me. Um, who, uh, felt she felt, uh, a little worse the next day. And this is called.

Amber Warren, PA-C: A day after.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Day after ozone. It's called a herxheimer reaction. And it's when you are releasing so many toxins that if your detox pathways are blocked, you may not feel super well. And this can happen with any sort of detox, you know, whether you're doing a push catch style detox, uh, you know, using zeolite, using binders and some of our. To struggle with. Some of these chronic inflammatory things have been there at some point, right. Every person will hit a different point where they may, um, feel that they're hitting a place where their detox capacity is being superseded by the amount of toxins being released by the cells. So that's what causes that. So only I've only had one of those and thankfully it passes, you know, um, do you.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Just add binders to help that I.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Would add binders and I am I'm a big proponent, honestly, of doing coffee enemas as well. Um, when you if you get to a place where you feel like your ability to, to clear the toxins is being is blocked, um, because a lot of times that will actually pull someone through that experience. So if they have a headache, um, or just don't feel, feel, well, like nausea or anything like that. Um, binders, water binders and, um, coffee enemas are my go to for for most people. There's always a few outliers on that. But for sure.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yeah. So coffee enemas I oh so therapeutic. I love adding that intervention to my for my patients. Yeah. Um, I've had a couple not many, but a couple patients who don't tolerate the coffee enemas. Yeah. Um, and I'm assuming that it's because their body's just ridding themselves of so much toxins. And there probably are other detox pathways that aren't open. The lymphatic system, maybe. Yes. Um, is that is that how you're approaching those patients, too? Like, they just need more detox support and are probably more binders, like at Post Coffee enema?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Well, some of some of some people can't even tolerate the binders. Um, which is interesting or even say glutathione, which is another, you know, powerful antioxidant that helps to clear, um, you know, these open up detox pathways to protect the cells, kick toxins out of the cells. Um, some people are not able to tolerate sauna. You know, these are very simple, basic beginner things. Um, so, um, you know, I guess you had asked me a question earlier. I'll, I'll, I'll, I'll add a little bit to that. You were saying, why are so many people having thyroid symptoms? Um, but there are many symptoms that people are having. It just seems to be multiplied. And there's a doctor by the name of Neil Nathan, who is a amazing resource in the field of these chronic inflammatory conditions, mold and Lyme. He spends a lot of time talking about in his book toxic. And um, and so it listening to him talk, uh, we had consulted him for a certain situation and he was just saying, you know, and I think believe he says this in his book, actually, that, um, some of the clients that he used to deal with, you know, a couple of decades ago, very simple, um, very sick, but very simple protocols. And they would see this awesome resolution. And now it is it is seeming to take quite a bit more to move people from a state of chronic disease to a state of health. And some of these, you know, very chronic, debilitating conditions. And I, I do believe that it's the, um, the additive effect of many layers of, of toxicity. So with Covid, we had mitochondrial dysfunction on a mass scale. Yeah. Um, so many people who may not feel like they have long haulers probably still have some mitochondrial dysfunction. That is, that is, um, opening them up to let's just say they got bit by a tick when they were young. They never had any symptoms, got Covid, mitochondrial dysfunction. Now their cells don't have the ability to keep the Lyme at bay or the mycotoxin damage at bay. And now their body's resilience level is lower. Now all.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Of a sudden Covid.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Exposed.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Correct.

Amber Warren, PA-C: What was underlying and going on that their body was able to just keep dormant? That's right.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. Their body had the ability energetically to keep it from actually taking over.

Amber Warren, PA-C: That is a message that I think needs to be shouted from the rooftops. And that would alleviate a lot of suffering if people could have the aha moment and get somebody that acknowledged that and understood that, because, yeah, I think there's still uh, yeah, so many struggles with that.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yes, yes.

Amber Warren, PA-C: And struggles with the antidote that we've thought was an antidote to Covid as well. Right?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Correct. Yeah. But likely another.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Mitochondrial toxin as well.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Exactly. Right. Yeah.

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Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. And then the other one that happened, and I like to mention this in my consults, because I think it's one that gets easily overlooked, but was also rolled out massively during 2020 when Covid was spreading rapidly is the 5G and so really interesting. But we don't often think of that having any consequences because it's invisible. We can't see it. We can't feel it. Um, very difficult to measure. And there's an incredible lack of studies on it, its effects on on health.

Amber Warren, PA-C: They don't want us to know.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Correct.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: They actually the FCC, I believe, was challenged to do a study. Um, I don't remember by which entity this was and, and has never produced a health study on this. Of course, there are other interests at play, but the idea is we need to think about these things when it comes to our health. Right. So, um, one of the things that we do know by building biologists and geo engineers, we understand that 5G does precipitate mold growth within a home, um, within a building structure.

Amber Warren, PA-C: And within the.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Body to and within.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: The body as well. Correct? Yeah. So it's it's almost as though mold, um, are these this fungus that what we call mold is, is using that as an energy to propel it. And so we're noticing a lot more people coming in with symptoms testing and finding mold. And they probably were living maybe in a moldy house before. But why are they all all of a sudden symptomatic now? Right. Um, why after 2020 is this seems like, oh, my cousin has mold. My sister has mold. My, you know, and these are the people who actually figured out that that was causing their symptoms, right.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So absolutely. Yeah. Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: We interviewed earlier in our podcast, I want to say it was even like maybe podcast number seven, 8 or 9. Ryan Blaser, who locally runs a company called Test My Home. There's a handful of really different home testers in the Valley now, but, um, and he gives some really good tips, uh, for our listeners that are interested on just things you can do in your home to help mitigate those emfs. You know, in my home, we turn off our Wi-Fi at night. I know you guys are working towards getting fully hardwired in your home, right? Yeah, you are already there. Oh that's awesome. Have you noticed? Like, your sleeping better, your kids are sleeping. Have you noticed?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD My wife for sure. Yeah, I guess I do too. Yeah. I used to take a lot of sleep supplements and I don't actually anymore. I didn't even think of that. Yeah, yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: We just turn it off if we're hanging out in the home or for sure when we go to bed and we don't need to have it on, you know, I don't we don't own a microwave. Like I don't zap food. Yeah. We don't have a lot of. I was even having a conversation today with a patient about a patient who's, who's who's getting worse now. She stopped her detoxing, getting worse again. And, um, sure enough, they put in an in-home security system, right? With, like, all these different signals and all these different electromagnetic frequencies going through their home. But it's like what's, you know, and they were like, well, we want to protect our family and our kids with a security system. Yeah, it's hard to make some of these decisions.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: I'll give you a quick story about that. I had a I had a client I have a client who, um, is very sensitive to emfs. And, um, she told her mother that the walls were buzzing and they were like, well, which walls are you sensing that's buzzing? And she pointed out the walls that were buzzing and they were like, that's exactly right. Where they ran the cables for the video, the security system behind those walls.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Oh my goodness.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: So they got it removed and the buzzing went away. So that's how sensitive she was. But a lot of people don't realize that just because she was sensitive enough to realize it and communicate it, it affects all of us. We are just not we are not keen to it. Yeah. So it is a cellular stress. We just aren't really aware that it's doing that to our bodies.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So I just think there needs to be more awareness of these ring video cameras and these smart TVs and these smart. I mean, it's just we're so interconnected now and these stupid cell phones that we have to carry around with us, and these laptops that sit on our lap when we go home and work like it's just it is everywhere, let alone the 5G towers you're speaking to that they're putting up all throughout our communities. Like it's it's really frightening when you think think about it.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah, that's that.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Is a whole nother, uh, topic unto.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Itself. I know, I.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Know, yeah, it's scary, but yeah, you know, we can't live in a bubble. No, we can't completely control environment. No one we know we can't live in fear. We're not meant for this earth. We're not going to be here forever. But. So I think just being practical and reasonable about what we can do. And then and then I think we also underestimate, you know, I get really worked up with all the, you know, red light beds that cost $90,000. And, you know, we have some friends that just bought like a $5,000 cold plunge. Right? And I think we forget or even like the, you know, the $10,000 face treatments for wrinkles, right? And it's like, go stand outside on the on Earth.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Uhhuh.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Drink some good quality water, eat organic, nourishing real food. I think we forget of some of these basics. Right. So grounding how it offsets the effects of emfs eating good quality food like it's not. I think we can sometimes get so focused and stressed out about one thing.

Amber Warren, PA-C: And yeah, it's perspective. Yeah.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah, 100%. You know, Anna and I have been talking about this recently because we have focused so much on a lot of the little things for so many years. And, you know, we were encouraged by a practitioner that we respect very much. Doctor Chris Peine. Yep. Um, to to just say, you know, um, it's okay just to relax, you know, and just let things flow because we've had our own health journeys, you know, in our family. And it's been one of those things where, man, we've tried this or we've tried that, and I know a lot of people can relate to that. They're like, I've been to this doctor and I've been to that doctor. Right. And so it's been one of those things where you learn to surrender and let go of control, and then you learn to find joy in the journey. And I think, um, for, for us, that's kind of where I actually think that's the lesson that we're supposed to learn when we're going through this phase. And then just like any journey, there's always another something around the corner, right? There's a light at the end of the tunnel, right? But it doesn't feel like it when you're going through it. Right? So during that time, that's when you have to surrender and then find joy in that, in that part of the journey. And that's that's probably the most difficult part to do. Um, not to give up, not to get down, you know, disheartened. Um, the analogy that I've used with a lot of my clients who have, um, quite a health journey to overcome and have maybe been working for some time is the concept of I. We were eating an artichoke, and, um, my daughter was getting a little frustrated because it just looked like she was not getting anywhere at all. Every time she pulled a leaf.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Off, it just looked like it was the same.

Amber Warren, PA-C: You're like, that's a really expensive organic artichoke. I need you to, like, actually get some of that meat off there, right?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah. And she's like, well, where's the heart? Where's the heart?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: And then it just like kind of clicked and I'm like, that's exactly what this is like. It's like we're putting in efforts, we're taking certain supplements, we're doing certain therapies and remedies, and we're putting in the work. And sometimes it feels like we're just treading water or taking two steps forward and one step back, or one step forward and two steps back. Right. And and what I it's just been so beautiful. I have this week had the blessing of seeing two clients who have been working very hard since May or June, um, without, you know, some change here, a little change there, not worse this time. And, and then boom, all of a sudden everything started to clear. Um, one of my clients, she was getting 2 to 3, 2 to 3 hours of sleep at night. And we tried numerous things, and we we tweaked the protocol this time. Then we tweaked the protocol that time. And this last time, boom, it happened. And she is sleeping again. Like. And it was the most beautiful thing to hear. And this other client, that's.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Such a quality of life. Yes. Like I.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Mean, can you imagine.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: 2 to 3.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Hours. I mean, that's.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Like prisoners of war. They make them stay up all night and they deprive them of sleep. It, um, it makes you crazy.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Crazy? Yes. And so that just made my heart so happy. And then another one who has had some of the most difficult, tested positive for literally everything under the sun, from viruses to Lyme to mold to chemical toxins and heavy metals. I have not seen quite another profile as extensive as hers, um, in part because she took the time to do a lot of testing before she came to see me. Gotcha. Um, and, and I, you know, I will say that she never has given up. She has always applied pedal to the metal, used her intuition. Um, taken, you know, the best approach that she can not given up hope. Yeah. Um, even when her family didn't necessarily believe in her, eventually she started to get some support. But for a while, they thought she was just crazy. Yeah. And, um. And I will tell you that we had a consult actually today, and. Oh, man, it was just like testimonial after testimony after testimonial. And it just like those. That's why we do what we.

Amber Warren, PA-C: I was just going to say.

Amber Warren, PA-C: That's.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Why we do what we do.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yeah. The most. Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Selfishly fulfilling part.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Of our jobs that.

Amber Warren, PA-C: We get to be a part of that. Yeah.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yeah, yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So cool.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yeah. Back to it really resonated with me. You were talking about how we do need to just find joy in the journey and sometimes step back. I had a similar conversation regarding that today with a patient. Um, she feels like she's very socially isolated from friends, their newly retired and or. Sorry, they're not retired, their friends are all newly retired, and they are still working because they really love their jobs and they want to stay socially engaged in the community. But she's finding as she embarks on this health journey, all of her retired friends just want to go wine tasting and drink wine and go out to eat and go out to lunch. And she's trying to really, you know, change a lot of that. And, um, I just said to her, I'm like, go share a glass of wine with your girlfriend.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yes.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Like there is more damage. And socially isolating yourself and not engaging in community than enjoying a glass of red wine.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: That's exactly right.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Just don't drink a bottle. Yeah, like you know. And it's like I was giving her permission and the freedom she felt, how I felt her just relaxed.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yes.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Um, the freedom to go be in community and be with humans. That's how we're built. Yes, that's how God designed us. Yes. And so I think we do need to remember that I actually had a similar situation with your wife, Anna, the other day. I was picking up my kids from your house, and we were trading, um, like, our thrive market purchases and our. Your standard bulk food purchases and talking about like protein bars for the kids and, well, gosh, that has cottonseed oil or not cottonseed, but, um, sunflower oil and that safflower oil and sunflower oil. And we both looked at each other and were like, we need to come. Like, this is crazy. Like we need to calm down. Our kids can have a bar with a little, like every once in a while when they just need protein and nutrients. Right?

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Right.

Amber Warren, PA-C: And it's like we're driving ourselves crazy, um, as moms trying to put nothing but pure children. Yeah. And it's like we're doing so much more damage to us and our families and our children by trying to be freaks about this.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: That's right.

Amber Warren, PA-C: We have to just let go.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: That's right. Just let.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Go.

Amber Warren, PA-C: So yeah, it is a really good, um, a really good takeaway message for all of us.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Yes, yes.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Our conditions aren't going to be perfect. They never will be. Yep.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: That's right. Yeah. We live in a broken world. And so we learn how to apply the things that matter, and I, I like, you know what? I really, um, I think is a really cool thing to consider is the, um, the blue zones, they have a neat little model. And if you look through, I think it's I want to say it's four, uh, I'm going to butcher this, but it's four main categories. There's a name for it and then there's nine, I guess traits that circle those categories. And when you break it down, I love I just love that mental model of how it's not just one thing you can over focus on. One thing like, oh, I got to make sure I get Eat This way or yeah, I got to make sure I take these supplements. But it it the community aspect matters, right? Finding purpose in your life matters. Those are huge pieces. And that's what they found in these longevity circles. You know, many some of them may have been, you know, chronic smokers or, you know, some of them may have never eaten a piece of organic food in their life. Right. But there was something about the whole the whole picture being fed where they had purpose, they felt community. They they did something where they were probably eating whole foods right there. They were out in nature. They were probably, you know, walking barefoot on the ground somewhere, you know. So it's it's not just the one thing where we can get a little hyper focused. It really is enjoying life and and focusing on those things where, where we find purpose and community and connection and then, you know, where we can do better, do better. Don't be lazy, right. Pay attention to things that you can fix. Right. But but don't over, over. Focus on it to a point where it becomes a burden.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: So yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yeah, those blues owners, they probably don't need ozone. Yeah.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Right. Exactly. They're probably fine. They probably need our help. Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Well, thank you so much, Doctor Penick. It's always such a joy to talk to you. And I feel like we always start with just your brilliant scientific mind. And then we end, like, just with the heart issue, which is the most beautiful part of medicine, right? It's just making that connection on what truly matters and what we're what we're made for.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Yes. So thank you so much. Thank you for your time.

Dr. Charles Penick, MD: Awesome as always. Thank you. Yeah.

Amber Warren, PA-C: Thank you for listening to the Functional Medicine Foundations podcast. For more information on topics covered today. Specialties available at the FMI center for Optimal Health and the highest Quality of supplements and more. Go to


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