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Dr Gemma Newman

6 Science-Backed Habits That Will Transform Your Health | Dr Gemma Newman

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What small, simple habits can make the biggest difference to your health?

Dr. Gemma Newman, also known as the Plant Power Doctor, joins us to unravel this question from a science-backed perspective, drawing on her training in nutrition, psychotherapy and a wide range of holistic approaches alongside her medical practice.

In this eye-opening conversation, we’re diving into the six essential healing habits that everyone should know, but that are often overlooked. Press play to discover: the critical role of nutrition in creating optimum wellness, why love is the secret weapon that can help you thrive, practical ways to weave gratitude into your daily life, how to harness the healing power of nature, simple strategies to implement these habits at home, and how to inspire your children to build healthy habits that last a lifetime.

Whether you’re seeking to heal chronic health issues, inject more vitality into your day, or simply find easy ways to elevate your wellness game, then press play now…this episode is for you!

About Dr Gemma Newman

Dr Gemma Newman is a doctor, speaker and author of two bestselling books — The Plant Power Doctor and Get Well, Stay Well: The six healing health habits you need to know

Dr Gemma has worked in medicine for 20 years and is the Senior Partner at a family medical practice. She has a specialist interest in holistic health, plant based nutrition and lifestyle medicine and is regularly invited to teach other doctors and the general public via training programmes, podcasts and conferences about the benefits of holistic health.

As a presenter she has been featured on ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky News Sunrise as well as BBC Radio and the Chris Evans Virgin Radio Breakfast Show. She was featured in The Daily Telegraph for her work in plant based nutrition. She has also appeared on many podcasts including The Rich Roll Podcast, Deliciously Ella podcast, the ‘Feel Better Live More’ podcast by Dr Rangan Chatterjee and Mo Gowdat’s ‘Slo-Mo’ Podcast.

In this episode we chat about:

  • The unexpected path that led her to become the Plant Power Doctor (5:22)
  • The role of nutrition in holistic health (9:33)
  • The 6 healing health habits that can help you thrive (15:15)
  • The power of gratitude to elevate your health (18:55)
  • Why love is a potent but overlooked tool for wellness (25:23)
  • How to make Mama Nature a part of your wellness routine (30:27)
  • A new perspective on the healing power of exercise (33:55)
  • Prioritize this one thing and watch your health radically improve (45:21)
  • How to implement these 6 habits in your daily life — including with your kids (57:00)
  • The #1 book she wishes was in every school curriculum (59:59)

Episode resources:

  • SheLaunch (join here)
  • Mastering Your Mean Girl by Melissa Ambrosini (book)
  • Open Wide by Melissa Ambrosini (book)
  • Comparisonitis by Melissa Ambrosini (book)
  • Time Magic by Melissa Ambrosini and Nick Broadhurst (book)
  • The Wholy Mama Journal (get it here)
  • The Plant Power Doctor by Gemma Newman (book)
  • Get Well, Stay Well: The six healing health habits you need to know by Gemma Newman (book)
  • Kitchen Table Wisdom by Rachel Naomi Remen (book)
  • Your Baby Doesn’t Come with a Book: Dr Golly’s Guide to the First Four Weeks of Parenthood (Dr Golly’s Emparenting Guides Book 1) by Daniel Golshevsky (book)
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The following transcript has been automatically generated and not checked for accuracy.

Melissa: [00:00:00] In episode 593 with the plant powered doctor, Dr. Gemma Newman, we are talking about her six healing healthy habits that you all need to know and how to get your kids to eat more vegetables and live a healthier life. Plus so much more. Welcome to the Melissa Ambrosini show. I’m your host, Melissa, bestselling author of Mastering Your Mean Girl, Open Wide, Comparisonitis, And time magic.

And I’m here to remind you that love is sexy, healthy is liberating, and wealthy isn’t a dirty word. Each week I’ll be getting up close and personal with thought leaders from around the globe, as well as your weekly dose of motivation so that you can create epic change in your own life and become the best version of yourself possible.

Are you ready? Beautiful. Beautiful. Hey, beautiful and welcome back to the show. I am so excited about this episode because I [00:01:00] love all things health and wellness, because I love to feel good. And when I take care of myself, I feel like the best version of myself. It allows me to show up as the best mom, as the best boss.

as the best wife, as the best friend that I can be. So I am so excited because what we dive deep into in this episode are the foundations, the fundamental things that we can be doing each day that really add up to big results in our life. And for those of you that have never heard of the plant powered doctor, Dr.

Gemma Newman, She is a doctor, speaker, and author. She has worked in medicine for 20 years and she is the senior partner at a family medical practice. She has a specialist interest in holistic health, plant based nutrition, and lifestyle medicine, and is regularly invited to teach other doctors and the general public via training programs, podcasts, and conferences about the benefits of holistic health.

And she has that holistic approach, which I love. Now another [00:02:00] passion of hers includes planetary health. Which is linked to human health. She was also one of the experts featured in the documentary film, Eating Our Way to Extinction, narrated by Kate Winslet. If you have not watched that, put that on your watch list because it is so good.

She is also passionate about the study of psychology and meditation and is also interested in the field of energetic healing. This is one of the reasons why I love this woman so much. She is so well rounded and holistic. And she is a qualified Reiki healer and teacher. Now she has written two books, The Plant Powered Doctor, A Simple Prescription for a Healthier You, which became a number one bestseller in Popular Magazine and Green Living, and her latest book, Get Well, Stay Well, Take Care.

The six healing health habits everyone should know, which we’re diving deep into today. She’s going to be sharing those six healing health habits with us. Now, this is a complete wellness Bible combining medicine, psychology, and nutrition. It is the first book that showcases science based research, [00:03:00] Provides simple, actionable tips and offers you a unique wellness template to help you transform your life.

Get Well, Stay Well also became a bestselling book, reaching number 33 in all books sold on Amazon in the first month of release, which is so amazing. Together those books, they make the perfect addition to your kitchen, which is so amazing. Now for everything that we mentioned in today’s episode, you can check out in the show notes and that’s over at melissarambrosini.

com.

And now, without further ado, let’s bring on the plant powered doctor, Dr. Gemma Newman.

Gemma, welcome to the show. I am so excited to have you here. But before we dive in, can you tell us what you had for breakfast this morning? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: I think, what did I do? I had a coffee and then I had an oat bar when I got to work because I was doing a really early clinic shift. 

Melissa: And that was a very long time [00:04:00] ago for you now because it’s 9 p.

  1. where you are. It’s 6 a. m. where I am. Other sides of the world. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah. I know it was. I had to think for a minute. What did I have for breakfast? I 

Melissa: haven’t even had breakfast yet. I’m yet to get there yet. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Oh, what do you plan to eat for breakfast then? 

Melissa: I usually have a smoothie bowl, and it is cooler now where we are, so it’s winter here in Australia.

So I blend it so it’s not freezing cold, because in Ayurveda and Chinese medicine, they don’t like cold things. So I blend it. So it is like room temperature and I love it. I’ve experimented with so many different breakfasts for me. It just works. I love it. I put in so much goodness in there. And then I also get to sneak in so many good things for my daughter.

So I get to sneak in like spinach and like all of these amazing things. That she probably necessarily wouldn’t eat, [00:05:00] but she just absolutely loves the smoothies. It’s 

Dr. Gemma Newman: such a great idea. I do the same thing with my boys, actually. I sneak in extra bits and pieces that they don’t notice in the smoothies. And when I do porridge in the mornings on like nice, sort of cold days.

I’ll add in the flax seeds and the chia seeds into the porridge. And yeah, it’s great to sneak that in. Yes, 

Melissa: absolutely. Now I want you to take us back. Like how did you first get into medicine? Did you know you always wanted to be a doctor? Are you in a family of doctors? Like how did you become the plant powered doctor?

Like how did this all unfold for you? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Oh, wow. That is a long journey, but I’ll try and keep it brief. So I felt from a young age that I always wanted to find something that would help people. And I know that sounds really corny, but it is true. Years ago, I remember I was about five years old and we had this elderly neighbor and, um, she fell over in her garden at the front and she sort [00:06:00] She cut her head badly and she was bleeding.

And my mum was in a state of panic. And she was running around and she said, what do we do? And she tells me the story. I don’t actually remember it very well, but apparently my five year old self said, we need to get towels and we need to call an ambulance. Why don’t you call 999 and we could get her a glass of water and some towels to put on the wound.

And then when the panic was over and we managed to get the lady stabilized and she was in hospital, my mom said, Oh, you should really be a nurse. And that was my first sort of experience of thinking, Oh, maybe I should, maybe I’ll do that. And then my grandmother on my father’s side, She trained as a doctor years ago, and although I never saw her in practice, it was really inspiring to me to know that a woman could do it, even back then.

I think she graduated just at the same time that the war was ending, and she was a woman, so I don’t think she was even allowed to attend the graduation ceremony, she tells [00:07:00] me, but she managed to do it, and she practiced as a doctor in all sorts of places during really difficult times. And she actually worked in Australia as well.

So my dad’s Australian because he was born there. And so, yeah, it’s a kind of a long story, but I decided that’s what I wanted to do. But like most doctors, you know, we have really grueling training. I wasn’t really looking after myself and I just felt exhausted all the time and I wanted to find ways to feel better.

So that’s where I dived a bit more into lifestyle. And trying to help my patients in that way, because I realized, well, if I’m, if I can’t keep my head on the, you know, above water, and if I can’t actually have the energy to be a doctor now in my early training, what, how am I going to sustain a 20, year career?

It’s just not going to happen. So that’s when I really sort of dived into fitness and yet, you know, all those years ago. Despite exercising every day and eating [00:08:00] healthily, I was having a lot of chicken and fish and salads. I still had a raised cholesterol. My, my lipid profile was abnormal. And that, in addition to having heart disease in my family, I just thought that You know, it was my fate to have a heart attack after menopause, and that would be the way I’d go.

But years later, I discovered how plant based eating could reduce your lipid profile. And in fact, one of the few ways to do so in my case, and it led me to some amazing discoveries about some of the health benefits of eating plants and how that can really help not only our health, but the environment and so on.

And so it became one of my passions to share that message. And I myself. was able to bring my cholesterol down and maintain a healthy weight and have the energy I needed to do all the things I needed to do. And my patients as well have had some amazing results. And you know, when I started to get the confidence to share that with my patients, I could see how much it was benefiting them.

It [00:09:00] really gave me the confidence to share the research online because I realized. Yes, there’s research behind this, but also now with my personal experience and seeing how effective it is day to day, I just have to share this because if I don’t, then I’d feel it was like, it felt like my duty, you know, like I had to do this because of how I felt about my family and the patients that I look after, allowing them the chance to have a few more years with their loved ones if they know that kind of information.

So that’s where the passion came from. 

Melissa: I love it. Thanks. Can you tell us, like, as a doctor in training, how much of a focus is on nutrition? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: The focus is primarily on ways to avoid nutritional deficiency. and some of the diseases that can occur as a result of malnutrition and undernutrition. Back when I was at med school, there was less of a focus on the chronic diseases of a Western lifestyle, but there’s a lot to cover.

So, you know, we learned all [00:10:00] about physiology, pharmacology, we learned about statistics, we learned about communication skills, we learned about every kind of body system. And how it works and how it can go wrong, anatomy, obviously. So there was kind of a lot to cover in that time. I think it’s a little bit like, you know, if you specialize in, say you become a gastroenterologist, you don’t learn how to do colonoscopies when you’re in medical school.

Often you sort of learn at medical school, but then you keep learning throughout your career. And what I would love is for there to be a real foundation and an understanding of lifestyle, nutrition, and also mental health in the medical school curriculum so that it can then inspire doctors to go further in that field.

So, yeah, I guess that’s a long way of saying not a great emphasis on prevention, but that it’s possible to do that later on if that’s something that you’re passionate about, which of course I am. 

Melissa: Yes, absolutely. You can [00:11:00] feel that. I wish we were kind of taught all of this prevention stuff in schools.

Imagine! Imagine! 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah, exactly. That’s what we need. We need to teach it in schools, not just for doctors, but actually something that we all can learn about to prevent illness. Because, I mean, I was absolutely blown away when I learned that the four health conditions that account for 80 percent of premature deaths around the world, which are heart disease, lung disease, cancers, and diabetes, Actually, 80 percent of those can be prevented with four simple lifestyle habits, which are eating a plant predominant diet, moving your body, making sure that you don’t smoke, and a low sensible use of alcohol.

By far the most impactful of those four is eating plants. It’s just unbelievable, unhealthy diets lead to more death and disability than smoking, alcohol, and drug use combined. And [00:12:00] people just don’t know this stuff and I’d love for them to know it, which is why I’m so happy to be able to talk to you about it on your podcast.

But these things are so important because it means the difference between making new stories with your loved ones and not. 

Melissa: And eating is something that we do every day, multiple times a day. And it’s like, if you’re putting junk in, it’s gonna not perform to its best. If you’re putting, you know, high quality nutrient dense plant powered food.

It’s going to perform very differently. You know, I like to think of it like petrol you put in good quality petrol. you’re going to function very differently to not very good quality. And I try and teach my daughter this, you know, she’s three and I’m educating her on what are healthy carbs, what is healthy fat.

And I’m very mindful to not do it in an obsessive way. I am simply just like, I make it fun. I make it playful. We talk about [00:13:00] what are healthy carbs, what are healthy fats, what are healthy proteins. And what’s fiber and I’d like talk to her and. Like, I’ll tell her, like, from the day she started eating, I would put her plate down in front of her and I would say, you’ve got sweet potato, avocado, like, I would point to everything.

You’ve got sweet potato, avocado, and whatever else there was on the plate. And so from that moment, like she knows what is what. And so then I would be like, sweet potatoes, healthy carbs, avocados, like healthy fats. And last night it was so cute. We were over dinner and she goes, mama, is cucumber healthy carbs?

And I was like, that’s fiber, babe. And that’s really good. Like fiber is so good for you, cleans out your intestines. And she was just like, Oh, like it was so cute. And I think. We need to educate from as young as possible and not be in an unhealthy way or an obsessive way. Just make it fun and playful. [00:14:00] 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah.

I love that. Making it playful, making it fun, talking about all the different foods and why we enjoy them as well is really interesting because we have so many emotional connections with food. I’ve got a whole chapter in my book actually about not only nutrition and amazing recipes, Also, the concept of food freedom, and I think a lot of us grew up in a time where our physical sort of appearance was the main reason why we would eat a certain way.

There’d be magazine articles and there’d be, even now, you know, with social media, it’s arguably worse. Like, there’s so much that’s driven by aesthetics and how we look rather than how we feel and what the food is giving us in terms of. the energy that we need to do the things we want. And I think that is really helpful for young kids to know.

And hopefully before they reach puberty, they understand the power of nutrition to just give them that healthy, vibrant body where they’re less focused on their appearance. [00:15:00] I think that’s, yeah, that’s one of the most important things as well, I think. 

Melissa: Yeah, always about feeling, like how do you feel in your skin?

How do you feel in your skin? That is like the best question to ask yourself. How do you feel in your body? I love that. Now, your latest book, Get Well, Stay Well, you share six healing, healthy habits. Can you please share them with us? And I will link to the book in the show notes for anyone to dive deeper.

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah, absolutely. So what I wanted to do with my first book, it was all about plants because I realized that at the time there was really nothing out there that not only shared why plants are so important to eat, but how. And so it was a very much a kind of complete why to, how to book. It was full color.

It had all the recipes, you know, I included heart disease, cancer, diabetes, hormone health, skin health. All the things that people found really important about their health and recipes to [00:16:00] match. This time, although nutrition is still absolutely paramount, I love the analogy that you made about the idea of the, the, the car and the fuel for the car, because that’s what your food is, as you know, as you rightly said, you know, the food is the fuel or the battery if you’ve got an electric car, but it’s also really important to think about, are your brakes working?

Are there cracks in, in your window screen, you know, your windscreen. Are there potholes in the road? What’s the terrain like that you’re trying to drive on? And even more crucially, do you even know where you’re going? And I think that’s kind of what I really wanted to sort of dial in on with the second book is an understanding that.

Often, nutrition is the first gateway to feeling better because it’s the one thing that we do three times daily or five times daily or however many times we eat that can demonstrably make a difference within a very short space of time. We’re talking about days to weeks. [00:17:00] Whereas there are other things in our health and in our habits that are equally as important but are not necessarily the first port of call.

So some people. Find their way to healthier living through fitness, some people through diet. But there are actually six things that I think are actually really integral to living a healthy, vibrant life. And I made them into a simple phrase, a word really, GLOVES. And GLOVES stands for Gratitude, Love, Outside, Veggies, Exercise and Sleep.

Gratitude, Love, Outside, Veggies, Exercise and Sleep. Now, the veggies chapter incorporates all the things we just talked about with nutrition, the different things that, um, you might need to focus on for a healthy diet, recipes, food freedom, but gratitude and love are numbers one and two. And I was really happy to be able to make those really the top priority of this book because [00:18:00] they are pivotal to our understanding of why and how we’re actually living this life in the first place.

And they’re the ones that kind of help you understand, well, where is my car going? And what is the terrain like? And how can I make this a journey that I’m actually going to really enjoy and feel glad that I’ve taken? And so, yeah, gratitude and love are the top two. And I can go into each of them in turn and why they’re so important if you like.

But it’s a lovely idea just to have that overview. 

Melissa: Yes, please dive deeper, babe. I love it. And I love the acronym gloves. I think that’s awesome. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Thank you. Well, it’s so nice to remember, you know, I use gloves a lot in my clinical practice. You know, I’m always taking them off and putting them on for physical exams and for blood tests and all of that.

And I realize You know, when we think about getting to work in our lives, it’s sometimes we use the expression, you know, let’s take the gloves off and get to work. I think that’s just so important and it’s on our hand as well. So it’s something that we can always look to and remember. So let’s start with gratitude.

I think one of the things that [00:19:00] I find hard sometimes in the wellness space is the idea that we should just be positive all the time and that we have control over everything in our lives if we just think positive. Okay. I understand where that comes from, but in my experience and through the lives that I’ve seen my patients living, I think it’s actually more true that death and disasters and pain and loss are actually an integral part of living.

These are things that we cannot, and perhaps in some cases choose not, to escape from. And I think if we can learn to understand that concept. and about how we can live with our feelings and move through our feelings at these times of crisis, then we are afforded a level of healing that we can’t get when we’re just trying to escape that discomfort, escape that pain, and feel better.

I suppose when we’re [00:20:00] not really prepared for it, because although, you know, we like to think that we have control over our lives and there’s certainly things that we can do to plan for the best life possible. I think some of the things that happen to us are things that we can never really plan for and we can’t always know that they’re going to happen.

So for me, it’s really an important thing to know, how am I going to deal with adversity when it arises and what kind of person am I going to show up as in that moment? And believe it or not, if we live our lives in a state of gratitude in general, it actually really helps us to navigate those hard times in a bit more of a successful way.

Does that make sense? 

Melissa: Mm hmm. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: 100%. Amazing. Okay. Good. Because there is a lot of science to show that this is the case. I love practical tips. That’s what the books always fill of rather than just talking about concepts. I like to make it really practical. So in this chapter, I’ve got the meaning maker exercise that I [00:21:00] sometimes do with patients, which is just really helpful.

to reframe some of the events of our lives and find ways that we can create meaning that serves us when things happen that we don’t want to happen. There’s another thing called the emotional tie cutting exercise, which is really powerful. And it’s a tool that you can use not only to think about relationships, exes, sort of past relationships, divorces, but actually You can employ these kinds of loving techniques to people that you want to keep in your life or the people that you have to work with, or even different versions of yourself that you feel as though you’re too connected to, and you want to just be a bit more free in who you think you are or who you want to be in future.

So it’s a really versatile way of bringing more of that feeling of gratitude into your life. And other things like. Gratitude journaling. There was a lovely study of 300 college students who were suffering from [00:22:00] depression and they were told they were split into three cohorts. One that was writing gratitude letters, one that was writing down thoughts that they had about their negative experiences, and the other group was experiencing psychotherapy alone.

So the first two groups had psychotherapy also, but they had the exercise of writing as well. And they were followed up for three months, but the exercise itself was a month long. And what was amazing is that it was the group that wrote the gratitude letters that had significantly better mental health than the other two groups.

And so even though all three groups improved, the ones that wrote the letters of gratitude on top of the psychotherapy, the ones that improved the most. And so another thing is it helps with pain perception. There’s so many people living with chronic pain conditions. This is a really interesting thing I’ve noticed over the last 20 years of my clinical practice.

I’ve got more patients seeing me now who are in sort of [00:23:00] supposedly healthy age groups in their 20s and 30s that are suffering from chronic pain, chronic fatigue, sort of conditions of their physicality that where they’re living with chronic pain and they have to try and navigate their way through that.

And some of these exercises can actually be really helpful because There’s some study evidence to show that gratitude practices can also reduce our perception of pain, which is helpful, because obviously the pain, of course, is real, very much so, but also so is our emotional world and our emotional experiences and how they impact our physical experience.

So, it’s really interesting to see how those things can interplay and, and make our lives better. 

Melissa: Absolutely. I have a journal that I created called The Holy Mama Journal, and it’s a beautiful journal that doesn’t take long. It’s for mamas to sit in the evening with a cup of tea, if they want to, and just take a moment to reflect.

So you do it in the morning and in the evening. So there’s like an AM page and a PM [00:24:00] page, and you just take a moment and it doesn’t take long. And there’s some gratitude in there as well. And I just find it’s so powerful. I’ve gone through stages of my life where I haven’t written down what I’m grateful for, and I truly feel the difference.

It is such a simple, easy, free thing that we all can do, but it’s often those easy, quick, simple, free things that are easy to do. They’re also easy not to do them. They’re also easy to push them down the bottom of our priority list. list or our to do list, but they really do move the needle. They make a huge difference.

So I love that gratitude is the first one. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: You’re right. I’m just thinking you’re so right, Melissa. And the thing is, I can say this and somebody can nod along and they can say, yeah, gratitude practices. Yeah. I’ve heard that helped. Yeah. And then they don’t do it because it seems like, well, how much of a difference can it really make?

But I’m telling you, and [00:25:00] you know as well, and I’m telling your listeners, it really does. And if you’re not sure and you’re nodding along and thinking, okay, yeah, that makes sense, but I’m actually not going to bother, please think again and just take that pen and paper and just do it for 28 days and then write to us and tell us if it made a difference to you.

And, uh, let us know. I’d love that. All right. What’s the next one? Love. Love. The love is the next one. Now, I know it sounds a bit strange for doctors to be talking about love. And to be honest, I suppose it doesn’t always come up in my conversations about things like blood pressure control and, you know, cholesterol and all the other conversations I have.

But it’s actually one of the integral pieces of a healthy life for so many reasons. There’s a lot of happiness research and sort of communities that are the happiest. And it tends to be people who prioritize community and friendships, and also people who are able to feel a sense of [00:26:00] purpose, whatever that looked like for them.

And again, it doesn’t have to be a high pressure thing. There’s a wonderful Japanese concept, and it’s called Ikigai, and it means to be able to find work that gives you a sense of purpose, or find something that you do well. find something that brings purpose to you and gives meaning to others and ideally earn money from it, and there you have your ikigai.

Well, I don’t think that you necessarily need to do those things in order to feel That sense of purpose for me, it’s a lot more simple. And what it comes down to in practical terms, I feel is a prioritization of compassion, so that’s compassion for yourself and compassion for other people. The prioritization of community.

So, whether that means spending time with your immediate nuclear family or being able to have the headspace for people who are around you, friends and other people that are in your [00:27:00] local community or online community, and finding out what your values are and trying to live by at least one or two of them each day.

And that is actually really all you need to have a really practical sense of love for yourself and love for other people. Because the truth is, we don’t always love our circumstances or the people that we have to interact with every day. But I think prioritizing love allows us to keep concepts like compassion and kindness and forgiveness not as like a distant ideal, but rather as values that we live by.

And so, you know, in this chapter I talk about, about things like positive self talk. You don’t have to call it an affirmation and you don’t have to say things that your brain will automatically reject. You know, for example, if you are used to sort of talking to yourself in a very critical way and you try to repeat phrases like I am beautiful, you might not feel that and then your brain’s rejecting it.

So it has [00:28:00] to feel real to you. But it’s Transcribed by https: otter. ai It also is a really important thing to do to help you feel less critical of other people. I think often, you know, the criticism that we feel inside ourselves is often something that is reflected in the outside world as well. And then the way that we notice the people around us and the things around us.

And in that sense, I do strongly believe that our inner world really shapes our outer world. And so if we accept, if we kind of accept our worst bits, the bits that we’re most ashamed of, or the bits that we’re most embarrassed about, or the bits that we wouldn’t share with everybody else, then it allows us to feel less critical of other people.

And it allows us to express less criticism of other people, which I think is really helpful for our own wellbeing. And so yeah, this chapter really does a lovely deep dive into some of the ways in which we can explore what it means to know what our values are and what it means for us as individuals to have a positive self talk and [00:29:00] also positive role modeling.

Because again, sometimes when you’re so used to speaking negatively in your mind about yourself and or other people, it can be quite a hard shift to sort of make yourself or make your patterns of thinking be different. So sometimes it helps. There’s a concept in compassion focused therapy, which is lovely.

And it’s the concept of a positive role model that you call upon, whether that’s somebody that you actually know in your life that you feel positively about, and that you know would give you good advice, someone who loves you and someone who you trust, or if you don’t have that person. then sometimes it can be a person that you know of from a book or from a series that you enjoy, or even from a movie, that you feel as though you would know the kind of thing they would say.

It’s actually really helpful to write that down and remember that for yourself because it’s someone where it’s a great way to be a mentor to yourself. If you don’t have [00:30:00] someone that can fulfill that role right now, it’s a lovely way of bringing that in. And then obviously, the hope is that the more you notice the power of mentorship, the more you notice people that you can bring into a life that will have that role for you.

So, yeah, it’s a really lovely chapter because it makes you feel as though you have a bit of a better understanding of going back to that car analogy, where you’re really going. I love it. I love that chapter so much. Okay, what’s the next one? Okay, so the next one is O for Outside. And in this chapter, I talk a lot about all sorts of different reasons why it helps us to be out in nature.

And I think the message is percolating through, especially in the wellness space. Maybe. less so with my patients, actually. But there’s some lovely stories in the book sharing some of the things that my patients have noticed and been through. And there’s one particular story of a man who really benefited from just Spending a moment outside standing on his grass [00:31:00] and just being in a natural setting, even for just a moment.

There’s so much research about the power of water, the power of grounding, the power of being in a forest setting, why these things are helpful to our brains, to our visual systems, to our immune systems. I could talk to you about studies from hospital stays. What’s amazing, actually, there was a great study on people who were in hospital and they were able to have a window that looked out on a green space.

It was basically just a hospital garden courtyard with a few shrubs and plants in it. And the amazing thing was that they noticed those who were able to have the view of nature outside the hospital window were able to leave the hospital more quickly after their surgery, and they reported needing less pain relief as well during their stay.

Which is just lovely. And yeah, I talk about sunshine. I talk about cold water therapy. I talk about a healthy home. I think that’s something that a lot of wellness books kind of [00:32:00] miss is the idea of bringing the power of the outside into your home and what that looks like. So I talk a bit about how we can reduce our exposures to the variety of chemicals that were exposed today and air pollution as well.

It’s one of the biggest, um, causes of environmental mortality in humans globally, indoor air pollution. And so we talk about, I talk about that and how it can be reduced. And so yeah, it’s a lovely, it’s one of my favorite bits of the book actually as well. It’s just a lovely way of understanding how we are nature and it brings together the food element really nicely because it’s about understanding our role as stewards of nature as well.

Which is something I think that many of us feel is important, but that we don’t quite know how to do. So that again is another sort of nice aspect to this chapter. 

Melissa: I love that chapter so much. Yeah, I talk about the power of nature and getting outside so much on this podcast because it really does make such a huge [00:33:00] difference to your physical and your mental health.

You know, for me, I woke up this morning at like four, I meditated for 20 minutes, but then, and I had my blue light blocking glasses on, I had to set up all of my cameras and my lighting for this interview. Like that kind of tells my body that it’s midday. These lights tell my body that it’s midday. So straight away, as soon as we finish this, I’m going to go outside, even though it’s winter, I’m going to take my shoes and socks off.

I’m going to look up to the sky. I’m going to ground and get my feet on the grass. Like something as simple as that can really help you recalibrate, can help you balance your circadian rhythm and your infradium rhythm. And these, again, just little, simple, free things that don’t take a lot of time, that are so easy to do, that really move the needle.

So I love this chapter. I’m so glad you included it. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Thank you, Melissa. I appreciate that. I think what I wanted to do with the book is make [00:34:00] everything as free and accessible as possible. And so what I loved about the outside chapter, the nature chapter, is that this is all stuff like you say, you can just do it.

It doesn’t cost you anything. And, I find that with my patients, you know, a lot of the, in the biohacking community and wellness in general, it can feel a little bit out of reach for some people and it can feel Difficult, whereas I think these things are just lovely, easy, cheap or free. So yeah, I’m all for it.

So yeah, V is the veggies chapter. So I take a bit of a deep dive into how we can incorporate more plants. Briefly about why. I talk about the environmental aspects of our food system as well, which is something I didn’t touch on at all in the first book. And also I talk about the mental health element of what we eat, both in terms of how food affects our mood, but also.

how our perception of why we eat can impact our mental health. And so yeah, it’s a lovely sort of [00:35:00] 360 degree look at nutrition and how it can help us. So in terms of practical things, I talk about the importance of plant points. I’ve got a table in there. You can If you’re somebody that likes tables and ticking boxes, then you can work out your plant points and trying to get as many different varieties of plant as you can in a week.

There’s a bit about mindful eating. There’s a bit about how to combat or avoid bloating. Cause one of the things I think some people struggle with when they eat more plants is that their gut bugs haven’t yet adapted to, eating that amount of fermentable foods or fiber rich foods. So yeah, there’s tips around that.

And also the recipes. I’m really excited by those because some of them are mine. And some of them are also by people that I really respect in this space, Dr. Rupi Orsha, The Doctor’s Kitchen, Deliciously Ella. I’ve got a cordon bleu trained vegan chef who also provided some wonderful recipes and I’m very proud of them.

And the thing I also wanted to mention is, [00:36:00] even though it’s um, a black and white book, it’s a hardback book. The recipes have a QR code where you can see all the lovely pictures. So you can get inspired about which thing you fancy making tonight rather than just sort of seeing the recipe itself, which I think sometimes it’s 

Melissa: nice to see it.

I cannot wait to dive into some of those recipes. So good. So thank you for creating that chapter because it’s so important. It’s so important. So I love that. Okay. Bye bye. What’s next? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: So the next one, we’ve got two left. We’ve got exercise and sleep. So many of us already know the benefits of exercise for our bodies, clearly for fitness, but also for our immune health, for our physiology, for reducing our cancer risk.

Again, I think it really helped one of my patients. She’d never really much been into exercise, but she had developed a diagnosis of bowel cancer. And when I explained to her that if she was to start moving her body, she wanted to know different things that she could do to improve her health in her recovery.

I think [00:37:00] sometimes it can feel a bit overwhelming, but when someone asks, then it’s much easier for me to give them sort of ideas that they can either run with or decide what they can fit into their life at that time. And so she was really keen to start her recovery in a way that was going to keep her healthy for life.

She had young children as well. She wanted to be around for them. And she’d never been that focused on exercise. But when I explained to her that even just doing 10 minutes a week would be enough to significantly improve her mental health during recovery from the cancer and the chemotherapy. And, you know, if she could manage.

100 minutes a week, then she would slash her risk of getting a recurrent bowel cancer. And then if she could do even 150, then, you know, she’d have massive cardiovascular benefits as well. And it was really an important way of reframing it for her because in the past, she’d always been quite reluctant and resistant.[00:38:00] 

You know, she’d never enjoyed exercising, but when she realized that moving her body could mean that she had more time to spend with her young children, everything changed. And she realized how important it was for preventing a recurrence of her cancer. And then she started to get really excited about it and making opportunities to move her body in ways that she enjoyed.

And so that’s what this chapter is really all about, is finding ways to enjoy movement It’s E for exercise, but even that word sometimes can be a bit off putting for people who don’t necessarily have a gym membership or are not training for a, you know, an event or a running event or something like that.

I think just moving, you know, those communities of the world that have the highest healthy longevity are those that move their bodies consistently throughout the day. They don’t necessarily have. You know, a gym membership or they don’t run triathlons and things like that, but they just move consistently.

And so if you could find any [00:39:00] way to move your body regularly in a day, then just do it. And it doesn’t have to be something where you would vigorously sweat. It could even just be walking. I think when I speak to my elderly patients, Some of them, they don’t realize the power of walking and how it can really stave off things like frailty and reduce muscle mass as you get older.

It’s so important and it can start at any time. So. Yeah, this chapter is all about easy ways to move your body. I’ve got the four minute workout. I’ve got the stretches that people can do each morning. I’ve actually talked a lot about ways to reset your mind through your body as well, because sometimes our bodies speak to us without us fully understanding what they’re trying to say.

And we can get physical symptoms when we’re feeling an emotional thing. And so when it comes to moving your body, it’s actually a really lovely way to sort of reset your physiology as well, to reset your mental state. So I talk a bit about the power of the breath in this [00:40:00] chapter. and how you can use different breathing techniques to improve anxiety or your mood.

And even something quite funny, it’s called Shake It Off. And it’s a little section in the book about how mammals relieve stress through movement. And what’s interesting is that humans have forgotten this, but every other mammal, when they’re experiencing a stressful situation, They shake it off and then they get over it.

It’s really funny. I see my dog, she’s sitting in here with me. She’s basically like my shadow, but when after a greeting or a moment of excitement or distress or, you know, stimulating social interaction, She’ll shake her whole body off, a bit like if they jump out of water, you see dogs do this all the time.

Well, every mammal does it after a stressful encounter. And so, uh, I’ve got a bit in my book about how we can learn to literally do that ourselves. Just shake our body from top to toe and [00:41:00] you might feel stupid, you might make yourself laugh, but again, laughter. That’s an amazing way to reset your physiology.

Your diaphragm is moving, you’re connecting with the people around you, and you’re feeling good. So yeah, all that kind of stuff is covered in this chapter. 

Melissa: Oh, I love that so much. So good, babe. I love it. And it really is simple. You can start today with five or 10 minutes or go for a walk for 30 minutes.

It doesn’t have to be three hours at the gym. It’s just about moving. It’s so important. And I love that shaking. If only we all did that after a stressful incident, imagine if we all just shook it off. and let it go and moved on. We would just get over things so much more quickly. So I love that. It’s so good.

Dr. Gemma Newman: Have you ever done it, Melissa? Have you ever done it? 

Melissa: Yes. And I used to use, have you heard of TRE? It’s Tremor Release Exercise. Have you heard of that? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yes, I have. Yeah. 

Melissa: [00:42:00] Yes. So I used to do TRE so much. So I was first introduced to it When my best friend passed away in 2000 and my goodness, was it 15 now or 14?

One of those. And I was introduced to it by a therapist because I had very full on PTSD after that experience. I got hives all over my body. I lost so much weight, even though I was eating exactly the same amount as I was eating beforehand. But because of the stress on my body from that experience. My body was just in fight or flight.

I was just producing so much cortisol. And a therapist introduced me to TRE and I started doing it and was blown away by how I felt. It was unbelievable. So if you’ve never heard of it, definitely check it out. But it’s where you get your body to that tremoring state, that shaking state, which we’re talking about.

And actually, if you look at mammals after they birth, they [00:43:00] all tremor. And again, it’s like that same thing of like getting that energy out of the body. It’s so powerful. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Isn’t it funny how they know to do this instinctively and yet we’ve forgotten. We get, sometimes our brains get in our way. I noticed that a lot.

So it’s lovely to try and get back to that. Would you recommend somebody go to a therapist to get into, to, to doing TRE for the purposes of PTSD? 

Melissa: You can actually learn how to do it. I think online, like you can learn how to do it and it’s very easy to do. I mean, if you want someone to like initially support you through that first session and maybe what comes up, I think what comes up, you may want someone to support you, but like just for day to day stress, like I’ll just do it if I’m ever feeling like I need to.

So I lay on my floor, I lay on my daughter’s bedroom floor while she goes to sleep. Every night and I lay there and I’ll just have my legs in [00:44:00] the butterfly pose and I’ll just be doing it, you know, while I’m laying there for 10 minutes or so. And it’s so powerful. So you can look it up online. I’ll link to it in the show notes, but yeah, there are so many TRE therapists out there.

I’ll link to someone who I worked with as well. Her name is Di. I’ll link to her. And if you want to have a session with her, she, I think she does them virtually now, but I did this in person when I lived in a different state, but I’m pretty sure she does them virtually. But yeah, it’s, What comes up if it depends where you’re at, I feel like if it’s really raw, then maybe you want someone to support you through what comes up, but more like day to day and you’re feeling okay, but you’re feeling like you just want to get out a little bit of like pent up stress from work or parenting or whatever it is.

Then. Once you have that technique, you can just do it every night whilst you’re watching TV or if you do watch TV or whilst you’re laying on the floor while your kids go to sleep, you know, like wherever you can do it, just [00:45:00] lay down and do it for 10 minutes. It’s really powerful. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah, I agree. I think perhaps if you’re dealing with something that’s really affecting you in the now, it’s helpful to have somebody with you.

But once you know how to do it, or if you’re feeling as though it’s just kind of a routine day to day stress that you’re hoping to ameliorate, then it’s something so easy to do alone. Absolutely. All right. What is the last one? Sleep. The last one is sleep. Yeah. And I think that’s something that many of us now know the importance of for reducing the risk of long term health issues like dementia, but also Just for our mental health and for our ability to function day to day, I think what I really wanted to focus on was how to get the best sleep, you know, how we can sort of support the best sleep quality is one of the principal ways in which you can improve every other aspect of your gloves framework.

And in this chapter, I also talk about a healthy interaction with our technical devices so that we know that [00:46:00] we’re dependent on them these days, but we want to try to avoid these devices also having an impact on our sleep quality and also on our ability to feel relaxed and renewed each day. So that’s a lot of what this chapter was about, as well as things like active relaxation.

I talk a little bit about active relaxation. techniques to help with things like sleep and general relaxation, uh, Qi Gong as well, which is a lovely practice. And meditations for sleep as well are covered in this chapter, which is very calming and hopefully something that, that will resonate with people.

But I also wanted to cover some top practical tips for people who work shifts because shift workers tend to have a bit of a raw deal when it comes to sleep quality and risk of chronic disease later in life. So I wanted to make sure that. You know, they know the best ways to optimize their sleep patterns as well.

And I also touched a little bit on insomnia focused cognitive behavioral therapy, because I think for many of us, how we feel about our lack of sleep can be [00:47:00] just as damaging as lack of sleep itself. And it can then become a really perpetuating cycle where It’s natural for us to have thoughts like, Oh, if I haven’t got to sleep by this time, I’m going to have a terrible day tomorrow, or look at the clock and decide that the next day is ruined because you haven’t had enough sleep.

And then of course the ruminations continue. And it can just become a really negative cycle, which is something that I think is really important to break. And so there’s some specific tools and scripts that I use in the book to help people who have been struggling, to accept the struggle and to just kind of come to a place where they know that their body is at least getting some rest and that they’re not going Yeah, they’ve got strategies in place that will help them get better sleep.

So yeah, it’s a lovely way to end the framework and move on to the practical side. The way, because the next part of the book is very much about how do you make this yours? Because the book, I wanted to feel like a [00:48:00] friend. I want it to feel like something you can come back to whenever you want. So the last section is very much about.

Which bits you found most useful, which practical tools you love and which things you’re going to do each day moving forward to help you in your life. So yeah, that’s the bit I’m actually most excited about for people to read and use because it’s the practical part. You can create your own plan. So that’s, yeah, that’s really fun.

It’s split into three segments. It’s Peace, Plants and Purpose. And then each of the gloves elements in the framework are in those three segments. So it’s really easy and I’ve put loads of suggestions in there. I’ve put different things that you want to sort of focus on, whether it’s mood or physical health, vitality, and I’ve put suggestions for each section.

So yeah, it’s just a lovely way of walking you through and for you to get the very best out of the book. 

Melissa: I love it. You literally have covered so much. It [00:49:00] is so powerful. And I’m a huge advocate for sleep. Like I prioritize my sleep so much because I love the way I feel after a good sleep, especially as a working mom.

Dr. Gemma Newman: Yeah, that’s what I’m going to ask you because you will have so many people listening. My children are a bit older now, so I am well out of that sleepless night phase. But at the time, it felt relentless. And I know that perhaps for many parents out there, you know, you hear all this stuff about, you know, how important sleep is and it’s just not a phase that you’re in right now.

So how do you deal with the difficult nights or do you not have those so much now that your daughter’s three or does it still happen on, you know, from time to time she’ll be keeping you up? 

Melissa: No, she is a dream. She is a dream sleeper and we created that from day one. We Did all the things that I’d read about, you know, we created a [00:50:00] beautiful sleep environment for her.

That was the right temperature. You know, we had the sound machine, we had it pitch black. We had so many positive associations with sleep. So we’re like, it’s sleep time. And we’d pull out her little sleep suit. So from day one, we have made sleep fun and exciting. And I’ve always spoken to her about how good it is for your body.

And you know, like, she now says to me, like, say she has a mozzie bite, this is a common one. Or like, she hurts her knee. When she’s laying in bed, she might be like, mama, my knee hurts. And I will say, okay, darling, well, one of the best things for healing is sleep. And so now she’ll go, mama, my mozzie bites itchy.

And she’ll go, sleep will help. You know, like she now says that sleep will help. And I’m like, yes, babe, sleep will help everything because it’s so powerful. And so from day one, like I have just created a [00:51:00] beautiful environment for her. Because I was like, that’s what I like. I like a beautiful environment. I don’t want bright lights in my room.

I want it to be the ideal temperature. And we’ve always made it happy and positive. And something that I learned, and I’ve spoken about this on the podcast, but something that I learned from Dr. Goli, who is a pediatric doctor, and he’s got an amazing book out, actually, he said to me, you do the happy wake ups.

So, like, when you wake them up, when you go in and you wake them up, acknowledge them. Wow, like, great sleep, babe. You must feel so good, like, that’s the happy wake up. And I truly believe all of these little things have helped create a beautiful environment for her. Like, she is such an amazing sleeper. And, you know, I breastfed for two years and I breastfed through the night for a year.

So there was those times where I was getting up and feeding and we didn’t bottle. So there was a [00:52:00] year where I would get up four times a night and feed. Now, my tip is go to bed at seven o’clock when your kids go to bed. You have to prioritize that because I know so many people like, Oh, but I want that time for me, or I want that time for me and my partner, or I want to watch TV or scroll social media.

Like I was just like, this is not the season for that. Like if I want to be the best mom that I can be and work, then I need to prioritize that. And so there was like. a year where I didn’t stay up watching TV. I didn’t scroll social media. I went to bed at seven o’clock. Maybe it was even six 30 when she went to bed.

And so even though I was waking up in the night, like I was still getting this long stretch of sleep, but you know, there were pit stops. I called them. We had the pit stops, you know, I’d have a little pit stop and then I’d go back to sleep. And so I never felt like that deep sleep [00:53:00] deprivation that so many women talk about and experience.

I never felt it like that, even though I was waking up four times a night. So I think creating an environment for your children, making it fun and playful and positive. Cause I know a lot of people get stressed about sleep time. And. That energy and your anxious energy. And that’s something else that Dr.

Goli said to me, he’s like, they feel your energy. And so if you’re anxious about them not falling asleep, and if you’re worried, they’re going to feel that. So, you know, the more happy and positive you are about the whole nighttime routine. And that’s another thing, like he’s huge on having a routine. So I’d give her a little massage.

Then we’d have a bath. Then we would read books. We have dim lights in the whole house. Like all of these little things are called sleep cues. And I swear they work because they work for me and I’m an adult, they’re going to work for a newborn and a child. So that [00:54:00] end, couple that with going to bed when your kids go to bed, are like two of the best things.

Dr. Gemma Newman: Thank you for sharing all of that. I particularly resonated with what you said about telling yourself this is not the season. Because I think it’s really helpful for us to actively choose which things we’re prioritizing at that moment and how that benefits us now and in the future. Whereas sometimes it can be really hard to make that choice if you’re growing a business or if you’re raising a family or if you are, you know, wanting to socialize and see your friends or if you’re wanting to get good sleep or if, No, whatever it is that you are prioritizing, there will be other things that fall behind.

I think balance is something that is, I think it’s almost a fallacy to be able to say to yourself, I have complete balance in my life because there will be things that you prioritize more at certain seasons of life than others. [00:55:00] And I think if we can be honest with ourselves about which season we’re in, then that helps us to feel better about the areas of our lives that require less slack.

Melissa: Absolutely, Hunt. And for me, speaking on stages, running my own events and speaking on other people’s stages, lights me up so much. I would do it every day if I could. Being interviewed on people’s podcasts lights me up so much. And prior to her, I did those things. All the time. And I literally had to have a conversation with myself when she was born.

And I was like, and I had maternity leave. But when I came back from maternity leave, I literally was like, this is not the season for me to be traveling and doing speaking gigs. This is not the season for me to be doing. Six different podcast interviews every week, even though I love them, even though I’m so grateful for them, but it’s just not that season of my life.

Now I’m in the season where I can do those [00:56:00] things again, which I’m loving and I’m so excited about, but like just being okay with where you’re at for me, like I wasn’t in that season. Things just had to shift and it’s okay. So maybe asking yourself, like, what season are you in right now? And how can we apply all of the things that you have shared in gloves?

to our life and asking ourselves that question, like taking that into consideration, what season am I in and how can I apply each of those things? Because in this season, you might be able to just do 15 minutes of exercise. But prior to my daughter, I could go to a Pilates class and then go for a walk afterwards.

You know, I could do two hours of movement. I mean, I could do that now. Absolutely. I could get my nanny or Bambi’s grandparents to look after her, but you know, I’m in a different season. So I love this so much and everything that you shared has been so [00:57:00] powerful. Now you also are a senior partner at a family medical practice in the UK.

You have OBGYN, family planning and pediatric credentials. So you are an expert in this area. Like how can we apply everything that you have said and inspire our children with gloves? Because I know for a lot of families, like getting their children to even eat plant based or more vegetables can be a real struggle, but I believe that the best way to inspire our children to do anything is to be the living, breathing, walking, talking example of what you believe in or what you are trying to instill.

That is the best way. Like if you want to teach your children about gloves, you have to do it. You have to embody it. Are there any other tips or tricks that you have that anyone listening who is a parent can implement into their [00:58:00] family? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Other than what you have just said about showing how you live, because children tend to respond to what they see just as much, if not more, than responding to what you’re saying.

I think the other big tip I would have is actually listen. Just listen to your child and be present with them. So I think one of the things that is a hard challenge in modern times is staying present in general, because of all the distractions that we are having to deal with, with work and with our daily habits and with our phones and with our devices.

And so. Making the conscious decision, you mentioned the conscious decision of deciding what season you’re in, but also making that conscious decision, how am I going to be present with the people that are most important to me? And of course, with regard to our children, being present at their level is going to be really [00:59:00] important because it’s a way to connect with them.

And then once you’ve connected with them, it’s much easier to share messages that they might respond to. But listening and connection is that number one piece that. It’s hard to do because we’re often in our own heads. Whereas I think if we’re conscious to say to myself, how am I going to connect with my child today?

How am I going to play with my child? How am I going to listen to my child? How am I going to respond the next time they feel distress or they express distress? How am I going to respond the next time I’m feeling distress or wanting to express distress and, you know, aiming to reconnect when things have gone wrong in ways that you would hope that they can learn from because there’s ways that they can learn even from disconnection, how you aim to reconnect is really important as well.

So I would say, other than living and breathing, the different things that you’re hoping to implement, just listen and be present. 

Melissa: Beautiful. I love that so much. So beautiful. Now, [01:00:00] if you had a magic wand and you could put one book in the school curriculum of every high school around the world, besides your books, which absolutely should be, they should be, 100%.

Let’s pretend they’re already there. I’ll wave my magic wand and boof, they’re in there. Apart from your books, what is one other book you would choose? And it can be on any topic, but for boys and girls, you know that 15, 16, 17 age. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Hmm. So let me think about that. I think that. Other than things like nutrition and lifestyle, I think storytelling is important because it’s a way that we connect with our own psychology and the things that are important to us.

So I really like the book Kitchen Table Wisdom because it’s essentially stories from a psychiatrist [01:01:00] about how to be wise. It’s a really lovely book because it almost gives you life experience by proxy, which I think a lot of teenagers could do well with. It’s something, if they can engage with it, and the simple humanity of listening to stories across the kitchen table, what it is to be human, I think it’s just a lovely, it’s a lovely way to, to bring a bit more of that wisdom into your day to day interactions, which is hard to do, I think, in those years of life, it’s all very much go, and often it can feel as though you are really challenging yourself in ways to, to understand who you’re going to be, and what you’re going to do, and how you’re going to impact the world.

Uh, and so it’s a nice way of drawing you closer to the integral, um, power of just being and listening and storytelling. 

Melissa: Oh, I love it. Beautiful. I’ll link to that in the show notes as well as your amazing books. Now, I would love to hear how your day [01:02:00] unfolds. Can you talk us through a quote on quote Typical day in your life.

How old are your boys? Start from the moment you wake up, all the little rituals and routines that you do, I would love to hear. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Okay. Wow. Well, that could take ages. I’m just going to, I’m going to do a quick run through. High level. High level. Right. When I wake up, I like to do a gratitude practice and it’s part of my Reiki practice, which I don’t actually talk too much about on social media, but I have mentioned in my book.

I’m a Jikaiden Reiki teacher. And one of the things I do each morning and each night is a simple meditation around gratitude and connection, which really helps to ground me to the day, both at the beginning and at the end. So that’s the thing that I do consistently every single day. Other than that, to be honest, and cleaning my teeth, it always looks slightly different.

In the summer months, I love to go and stand outside in the grass with a cup of coffee or tea, usually a cup of tea. And I make the boys [01:03:00] breakfast, usually it’s porridge or a smoothie, and I make their packed lunches, and then I go to work, I work in clinic, not every day, but most days. And the days when I’m not in clinic, I’ll be working from home, or I’ll be at a conference, or I’ll be travelling, and I have an amazing nanny.

And I think it’s important to recognize again, the idea of sharing labor, physical and mental and where that goes. So I am able to be a doctor and I am able to be an author and I’m able to come on podcasts and speak at conferences and do all of this stuff because I have a loving husband who also earns money and because I have a really amazing nanny who we pay to be around when I’m not there.

And so she helps out a lot too. And she is the reason I believe why I can do all these other things I do as well as being a loving mom, because it allows me the mental space to do that. I think a lot of relationships would [01:04:00] really benefit from the self compassion that is required to understand that sort of keeping a home and running a home and family is in itself a full time job.

And if both members of a, you know, a marriage union, for example, or if you’ve got a two parent household would understand that and the mental load that takes, then that would be a huge burden off the weight of your relationship. So I think that’s a really important thing to acknowledge, which is something that not a lot of women really talk about.

They expect so much of themselves, but yeah, you’ve got to cut yourself a bit of slack in that department, I think. 

Melissa: Absolutely. It 

Dr. Gemma Newman: takes a 

Melissa: village. And how old are your boys? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: So now they are 9 nearly 10 and 12 nearly 13. So one of them’s in high school, one of them’s in kind of middle school. And they are, yeah, they’re lovely.

We just went on a little family holiday to Stockholm, a city break, and they had a [01:05:00] great time. We had a wonderful time together, so that was a great opportunity to reconnect. And they had a few days off school in their half term break, so yeah, it was lovely. Yeah, so, so then of course, day to day it will be after I get back from work, it’ll be, it’ll be dinner and bedtime and.

I still do story time with my youngest one. My older one is more kind of routines and schedules around not using tech anymore, going to bed, doing the things again that we want to try and model. So I try and spend less time on my phone now as well in the evenings because I want him to do so. So yeah, it’s, 

Melissa: It’s a busy but wonderful life.

Beautiful. Thank you for sharing. I love that. And I love that you acknowledge your nanny. I have an amazing nanny as well, and I’m so grateful. Having her part of our family allows me to do more of the work that I want to do and be the best mom and the best boss [01:06:00] and best author and podcaster and coach and everything that I do.

And so yeah, I think we have to remember that it takes a village and you don’t have to do it alone and it’s okay to ask for help and support. So I love that so much. Now Gemma, I have three rapid fire questions for you. Are you ready? Go for it. All right. What is one thing that we can do today for our health?

Just one. Um, eat plants. Yes. I thought you were going to say that. Yep. Okay. Okay, what is one thing that we can do for our wealth? Give love. Absolutely. And what is one thing we can do for more love in our life? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Feel gratitude. Because I think once you’re feeling so grateful for the things that you’re experiencing, then other people notice and they want to give you a little bit more love too.

Melissa: Absolutely. This has been so amazing. I’ve absolutely loved it. Is there anything else that you want to share or any last parting words [01:07:00] of wisdom? 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Oh my, well, I mean, there’s so many things I could share, Melissa. I could be here all night and you could be here all morning. But, you know, ultimately, I think it’s just about love.

You know, I want people to feel truly loved at the end of the day. And I think so many of us feel disconnected and alone. And so my message really is that you’re not alone. And, you know, as part of this human experience, it’s natural and normal to feel disconnected, but you’re not alone. We’re all in this together.

And that’s why I wrote the book really, because I wanted people to feel as though they had a friend. 

Melissa: You’re so beautiful. You are a delight and you are helping and you are serving and you are supporting so many people through all the work you do, your books, in practice, you’re speaking on social media.

So I want to know how I and the listeners can give back to you. How can we support Oh, 

Dr. Gemma Newman: what a lovely question. Well, honestly, you’d serve me by [01:08:00] reading the book and feeling as though you get something out of it. That’s what I want. I’d love any feedback as well. It helps me to feel motivated to keep giving if I know that the messages are being useful for people.

So that’s all I ask, is that you find it helpful. And if you do, then share it with me. That would be lovely. 

Melissa: Yeah, beautiful. And again, I will link to it in the show notes. Go and check her out. Go and follow Gemma on Instagram. I’ll link to that in the show notes as well. This has been so great. I’ve absolutely loved our time connecting.

Thank you so much for sharing all of your wisdom with us today and for staying up late past your bedtime for me. I’m so grateful. 

Dr. Gemma Newman: Oh, it’s my pleasure, Melissa. I’ve had a lovely time.

Melissa: I hope you feel so inspired. To take your health to the next level, to try on gloves for yourself, to embody gloves in your own family, ride it up on the fridge, stick it there [01:09:00] and teach your children to do one of those things each day. And make sure that they are doing gloves every single day. I love it.

I’m so pumped. I feel like I am ready to take my health to the next level as well. I’m always wanting to optimize and be better. So I feel inspired and I hope you do too. And if you’d love this conversation and got a lot out of it, please follow the show and leave me a review on Apple podcasts. Because that means that we can inspire and educate more people together.

It also means that all of my episodes will pop up in your feed. And it means that I can keep getting on these incredible guests for you. So if you aren’t following the show, if you have never left a review, please do those two things for me right now. I would be so grateful. Now come and tell me on Instagram at Melissa Rambrosini, what you got from this episode.

I love hearing from you and I love connecting with you. And before I go, I just wanted to say thank you so much for being here, for wanting to be the best, the healthiest, and the happiest version of yourself, and [01:10:00] for showing up today for you. You rock. Now, if there’s someone in your life that you can think of that would really benefit from this episode, please share it with them right now.

You can take a screenshot, share it on your social media, email it to them, text it to them. Do whatever you’ve got to do to get this in their ears. And until next time, don’t forget that love is sexy, healthy is liberating, and wealthy isn’t a dirty word.


Thank you so much for listening. I’m so honored that you’re here and would be SO grateful if you could leave me a review on Apple podcasts, that way we can inspire and educate even more people together.

P.S. If you’re looking for a high-impact marketing opportunity for your business and are interested in becoming a sponsor for The Melissa Ambrosini Show podcast, please email pr@melissaambrosini.com for more information.

P.P.S. Please seek advice from a qualified holistic practitioner before starting any new health practice.

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