499 Dr Anna Cabeca:
As the country starts to open up without a comprehensive Coronavirus testing system or contact tracing as recommended by epidemiologists and health experts, what can we do to protect ourselves – and boost our immune systems?
I’m Melinda Wittstock and today on Wings of Inspired Business we meet an inspiring entrepreneur who has important advice about important steps we can take to boost our immunity.
Dr Anna Cabeca is a pioneer in women’s health – from integrative, anti-aging and regenerative medicine to gynecology and obstetrics, menopause and sexual health. She has a new book out called the Keto Green Diet and she’s also the bestselling author of “The Hormone Fix”.
Today Anna and I talk about steps you can take right now to improve your health, boost your immune system – and prosper in business during Coronavirus.
What we eat, what we think, and how much sleep we get is a significant factor in staying healthy – and growing a thriving business. There are many things we can do right now to boost our immunity, and entrepreneur and pioneering health expert Dr Anna Cabeca shares important advice all women need to hear right now.
She also shares the steps she’s taken to make sure her team is safe at her fulfillment centers during Coronavirus.
Dr. Anna is an internationally acclaimed expert in women’s health, her areas of specialty including bio-identical hormone treatments and natural hormone-balancing strategies for menopausal women. She’s received extensive notoriety for her virtual transformational programs including Women‘s Restorative Health, Sexual CPR® and Magic Menopause. She created the successful and popular alkaline superfoods drink Mighty Maca® PLUS, and a top-selling, rejuvenating feminine vulvar cream for women, called Julva®. In her spare time, Dr. Cabeca hosts the highly regarded series “Couch Talk,” featuring compelling podcasts focused on a wide variety of important health and wellness topics. She’s also the host of “The Girlfriend Doctor” – featured on Podopolo, the world’s first fully interactive podcast network community.
Melinda Wittstock: Anna, welcome to Wings.
Anna Cabeca: Well, it’s great to be here, Melinda. Thanks for having me.
Melinda Wittstock: Well, thank you for all the work that you’re doing in the world. It’s especially important now that we all boost our immune systems, and you do so much good work for women in many, many different ways. But I can’t help but start by asking you, given coronavirus, what are the things we should be doing right now to boost our immune systems?
Anna Cabeca: Yeah, no, definitely. It starts with how you begin your day, how you end your day, right? It starts with a good night’s sleep, number one. It really does start with a good night’s sleep, and that seems so trite right now, but it’s never more important than it is now. Because I know even with myself that have developed these habits over a decade of working through trauma, PTSD, grieving, loss, and the deep depths of despair, that sleep has to be one of our number one priorities in addition to mindset. But getting those restorative night’s sleeps so our body can intelligently do what it needs to do to clean up the mess that occurs throughout the day, right, clean up and restore good cellular health and to rejuvenate and create that good resilience. So everything that we can do. really now, to focus on a evening ritual, an evening habit that gets us into deep restorative sleep.
Anna Cabeca: One of the things that I talk about is sleep in and of itself is good, but to give our body the fuel to repair while it’s sleeping is a bio hack that sometimes doesn’t get the attention that it needs to. So essentials, like getting those essentials that help our body repair during that good night’s sleep. It’s not drinking a half bottle of wine and then getting a good night’s sleep, right? You know what I’m talking about?
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, yeah, yeah, so what’s your routine? What’s your nighttime routine?
Anna Cabeca: It had developed over time. I honestly, I’ve had a significant amount of trauma in my life, had PTSD in my story, part of my life and my family’s life and trauma and drama was losing my son, losing a son in a tragic accident, right? But not sleeping for more than three hours a night, not to mention I’ve been an obstetrician and gynecologist for three decades, in solo practice for a good decade of that, and a good night’s sleep was basically none existent to me. That was the routine is not having a solid night’s sleep, never sleeping through the night, and then add PTSD on top of that and fear, and focusing on getting that good night’s sleep and establishing a sleep routine has been medicinal in my life.
Anna Cabeca: And so that starts with … I always say a good night’s sleep starts with a good morning ritual and so starts with setting out my day for success. The first thing I reach for is not a cup of coffee. The first thing I reach for is my Mighty Maca Plus Green Drink, an alkalinizing detox drink, and a tall glass of alkaline water is the first thing I reach for in the morning. Then in the evening, it is about establishing a healthy evening ritual, so a warm bath, restful music, a meditative practice, a gratitude practice or journaling practice so that those ruminating thoughts that can come up throughout the day are clearly put away in a bedside book closed for the rest of the night. Essentially journaling is a big part of that nighttime ritual for them.
Anna Cabeca: And so essential oils as well as additional support, like magnesium, bioidentical progesterone, melatonin, submucosal melatonin, and that really helps establish some beautiful evening rituals to help me get a good night’s sleep. So it has been a discipline and a practice to establish an evening ritual, and especially as I was triggered during this early part of the trauma. My son passed away 14 years and one month ago, but yet that evening, that trauma of this pandemic and actually having a daughter in Holland at the time … and that triggered, “Oh, my God, what if I can’t get to her? Am I going to lose another child?” And all of the-
Melinda Wittstock: All the stuff comes back.
Anna Cabeca: It comes back, and it came back quickly, almost like an avalanche, but yet I was quick to recognize it and reestablish the principles and practices and disciplines that have helped so much and enabled me to honestly live a very fulfilled, loving, joyful life and to give back like we both do in such a really generous way. And I acknowledge you for doing that and doing this. [crosstalk 00:05:30]
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, gosh. Thank you. It’s interesting what you’re saying, though, about how we get triggered. This pandemic triggers a lot of people’s fears. In our epigenetics, even, we have distant memories of previous pandemics and lots of loss and whatnot. It can be so easy, and see this in myself, and a lot of people, it could be really easy to fall into old, bad habits as well in that, whether it’s like workaholism or, you know what? It’s a pandemic. I’ll have the glass of wine. It’s that kind of thing. Or, like you said, like a past trauma coming up as a result of this. I’m thinking the virus has an interesting message for us because it’s really an opportunity to heal and heal a lot of those old wounds.
Anna Cabeca: I agree, Melinda. I mean, it is like breaking open any old scabs, so that you can truly heal. In all its ugliness and all its glory, right? But you can absolutely dig down to the deep depths of, “Okay, what is left that I need to work on to heal, to acknowledge? What is …” and also developing those principles and practice that help us really live life to the fullest. Like where can we focus on what is most important to our life? Let us just reset and evaluate what are the things that we value so much? And it is not those material things, is it, Melinda?
Melinda Wittstock: It’s not, actually. You and I are both in the Unicorn Club, right, of really high-performing female entrepreneurs. You know the wardrobe I have. That’s absolutely meaningless to me right now, right?
Anna Cabeca: It’s true.
Melinda Wittstock: Right? That just actually don’t really matter, and letting go of a lot of things that you take for granted like, I don’t know, being blessed enough to have a maid, well, that’s blown out. You begin to really realize what’s actually really important. I think the interesting thing, though, is that we do seek familiarity or something stable, something that we know psychological when there’s tremendous uncertainty and fear all around us.
Melinda Wittstock: The way it expressed itself for me is in total workaholism. Now, I’m just going to say that as an entrepreneur, I’m in the middle of a launch of my fifth business, so of course it was always going to be busy. But I’ve found it just a little bit harder than normal to have the usual boundaries around that work because I have this extra time of not getting the kids to school or those sorts of things, no business travel, right? And so those hours can easily fill up. I think on one hand, “Oh, look at me. I’m getting so much done. It’s so awesome. It’s so awesome.” But on the other hand, it’s like, “Wait a second. Am I slipping back into my old patterns?”
Anna Cabeca: Exactly. I am right there with you, a recovering, constantly in the progress of workaholism.
Melinda Wittstock: Right. And so it’s thing. Whatever it was for you, like if boundaries was an issue or money or any of those things, right, they are definitely, like you said, it’s like picking off a scab. They’re going to come up right now. So what are some of the things, as someone who’s been through the trauma that you’re describing … And my God, my heart goes to you, Anna. I mean, I can’t imagine what you went through and have gone through in that. And so many people now losing loved ones in the context of coronavirus. As you’ve coped through that … Sorry. As you’ve grown and healed through that, what are some of the things you do when something triggers you, like say around what we’re going through right now? How do you snap back into your routine? How do you let that go?
Anna Cabeca: I think it goes beyond that because we talk about survivors. Surviving was never good enough for me. Never good enough for me. It’s never what I wanted just for my children. I don’t want them to be survivors nor thrivers. That just seems like a very workaholic kind of word.
Melinda Wittstock: Right. Absolutely.
Anna Cabeca: Thriving, right? It’s a very masculine word, so I like the word flourishing. I really owned into this word. I want to flourish.
Melinda Wittstock: I love that word.
Anna Cabeca: I love that word. It’s a good word. Oh, my god. And we flourish, and you do this so well, through comedy, through humor, through laughter, through all the oxytocin-seeking behaviors, the oxytocin behaviors that we can develop, so humor, laughter, loving, kindness, giving, being a giver. We say in our groups go-giver, right, the go-givers.
Melinda Wittstock: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Anna Cabeca: But it’s beyond that. It’s also receiving love and affection. It’s receiving, taking that time to bask in the things that matter most to us. I think for me, one of the things that has enabled me to flourish, has enabled me when I was early on triggered during this pandemic to pull myself right back out of it and to say, “Oh no, we’re not going there.” One of the first things that I say to myself, and I share with others, is that, “What do I know to be true right now? What is the reality of this situation that I’m in right now? I know there’s a lot of hell in the world. There’s a lot of sadness and grief and pain in the world. What is true for me right now?” Number one, that’s a big reality check.
Anna Cabeca: The second is where’s the silver lining? What am I most grateful for right now, right here today? What am I most grateful for? That goes with my children. Being able to have a safe place to retreat to, and thankfully, I’m so grateful for this one. Melinda, I am so glad I’m an introvert, and I love being alone.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, my God. Okay, so that’s hilarious because I am also an introvert, and I’ve got two children who are introverts and a partner who’s introverted. And so we’re all just fine.
Anna Cabeca: I know. I know. Me, too.
Melinda Wittstock: In fact, I find all the outreach and all the Facebook and all the different things I’m being invited to and that stuff utterly overwhelming. I’m like, “Oh.” I have to actually turn it off. I can’t do as much of it as I was doing before. It’s hilarious. It’s too much. It’s too much incoming.
Anna Cabeca: Oh, I am with you, and I totally push myself into many extroverted events. I had all these invitations to speak. Like you, I’m in the middle of launch. I’m in the middle of my book launch of my second, soon to be best-selling book, thank you very much.
Melinda Wittstock: Yes. It’s exciting. We’re going to talk all about that.
Anna Cabeca: I know, but I’m like, “Oh, my God. This is so much better. I am staying home.” I have all my daughters move back in under my roof, right? This is a double-edged sword, right? There are five women and two female dogs.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, my goodness. That’s sounds like a lot of fun.
Anna Cabeca: It is.
Melinda Wittstock: A good lot of hormones going there, too. That’s curious. How is all that going? How are you balancing having all your daughters’ home, having the dogs, and being in launch mode?
Anna Cabeca: You know, honestly, it’s been great. Because of these principles, these oxytocin boosting activities that we know we need to do as a family, and it’s first of all being authentic, being present, being accepting for all of us at different stages of life. So there are currently three cycling women and two non-cycling women. Thank you, Jesus. Oh, Lord, right? It’s that I’m at 53. I think finally I am through menopause. Maybe I need one more month for that to be set in stone and one young one that hasn’t started yet. So I’m 53 with a 12-year-old and a 20-year-old and a 23-year-old, and a 31-year-old.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, my goodness.
Anna Cabeca: And you would love them, Melinda, because one is a total comedian. She is hysterical, and that laughter in a constant in our family. There’s that constant oxytocin.
Melinda Wittstock: Laughter is the best medicine… as is gratitude. I guess the gratitude and the laughter or the comedy, for me, are both silver-lining things. Because anything that happens at any time, even if it’s a painful thing, can sometimes be a gift as well. I mean, I think of the coronavirus, for instance. I think of, okay, so there’s tremendous tragedy and fear and an economy’s that’s breaking down and a whole bunch of other things.
Melinda Wittstock: On the other hand, it’s shining a light on all the things that are broken in our society, all the things that need fixing, all the things that entrepreneurs, in particular, particularly women entrepreneurs, are really well-suited to go and fix. It’s shining a light on ourselves in terms of what is it about ourselves, what things did we need to retire, let go of? What do we need to run towards, right, and embrace the really live our highest purpose? And by the way, the skies are clear and there’s no smog in the air.
Anna Cabeca: So true.
Melinda Wittstock: And so it’s interesting, with everything that happens, it’s always you can choose, I guess, how to look at it. When we think about the impact of this on your business, I mean, when this first … Again, so much uncertainty swirling around. Where do I have to pivot? What do I have to do? All of that, what has the impact been on your business?
Anna Cabeca: I think I want to hit that laughter, that comedian aspect. I mean, there’s always something to laugh about, and there’s no shame in laughing. Granted, I have been to the pits of hell, but it is so therapeutic to laugh, to find that laughter, to find that edge, to be able to find something to laugh about. I mean, I’m all in for My Big, Fat Greek Wedding video viewing on a regular basis, right? We need to find things to laugh about and to look at the humor side, and we’re … It does not in any way minimize the situation or position. I have learned the practice of going into one room and saying, “I’m sorry. You’ve had a miscarriage. You’ve lost your child,” of going into the next room to say, “Congratulations. This is the happiest day of your life,” right?
Anna Cabeca: The importance of being able to, number one, not feel guilty for having humor, to having fun, to having, in my existence for the first time ever, I did karaoke, Melinda. I had a blast doing karaoke with my daughters. Finding laughter and finding things to express joy and to express pleasure in the smallest and littlest ways, that it therapeutic. In my experience around the world, that is how people flourish despite being in war-torn areas, despite being in abject poverty, despite being in a situation where your culture, your home, your family is extremely discriminated against. It is sense of humor and love and kindness and celebrating the small things that enables people to flourish, so it is no small thing. It is essential, and it is a coping mechanism that is one of the most therapeutic coping mechanisms that I’ve found in my life.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, mine, too. I think through all the different traumas and things and challenges and everything in my life, I’ve always found a way to laugh.
Anna Cabeca: Yeah. Yeah.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, it definitely is a coping mechanism. The other one, of course, is finding ways to just quiet the mind, and when triggered use that as an opportunity to let things go. I mean, it’s vital. This is so, so important and such a timely reminder for everybody listening. And so how does humor play a role, say, for instance, you have fulfillment centers, you had to figure out, “God, my team members, my employees, are they going to be safe? How can I look after them?” You had all these different things hit you at the start of this and through this. What are some of the way that it has impacted your business?
Anna Cabeca: It definitely impacted the volume of my business, so we had to pivot right away. First of all, I run my distribution center as well as have a second distribution center mid-country, and the first thing was how are we running our business? What do we need to do to continue to serve our clients, to supply our clients with solutions and through my products and through my services, right? What do I need to do to keep doing this and getting my team onboard? So getting a leader for our team.
Anna Cabeca: Okay, this is what I foresee. This is how we help. This is how we are uniquely positioned to help and serve others, and let me just check in with you. What do each of you need in regards to my employees? Are you guys safe and feel comfortable coming in? And what do we need to do to make that happen? So some of my employees can work remotely, we’re a distribution center. They have to come in. And so it was about shifting schedules. There’s an early morning crew and evening crew, so there’s very little overlap and exposure of people working together. So that minimizes exposure.
Anna Cabeca: What are other things we do? We have a very clean facility. We run ozone in the evening to … ozone air purification systems to clean the air, et cetera. What else do we need to do? We need to make sure we’re doing this as well as taking care of packages in and packages out, so as far as distribution of my products. So that was really beautiful.
Anna Cabeca: Then my team just came up with stuff. I have a very bilingual and international team, so I was like, “Well, we need to communicate to all our population,” so in English and Spanish about how we can help decrease our risk of coronavirus as well as what we’re doing as a company to help our clients and support or clients and to be here to answer questions. And so my team was all onboard. I would say I am a physician. I am a clinician. My gifting is working with patients, right? My gifting is answering very difficult medical problems and creating solutions to help clients. In my leadership and business, Melinda, this has been a new part of my life over the last five years when I started more of my virtual business and running into actually running a business that wasn’t patient care.
Anna Cabeca: So my leadership and business, I wouldn’t say that’s been my strong point, but what I’ve seen is that through being a leader, taking ownership of actually being the leader for my business and inspiring those who work with me to lead, that has been … It’s been a beautiful aspect of seeing my business actually flourish during this time, to provide a service that’s well needed. And it’s not just in products, but it’s information. It’s in support. It’s in compassion. It’s in love. It’s in prayers, and that my whole team is onboard and is fully participating in that.
Anna Cabeca: I always joke with one of my leaders, who’s bilingual and has worked with me for over 13 years, and she’s like, “Honestly, the truth is I need to leave the house because in my house I’ve got … There is someone who’s not going to survive. Living with my husband 25/7, it is not a good situation.” She’s like, “I am out of the door first thing, 5:30 AM.”
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, interesting. I mean, it draws attention, like we were saying, to the problems as well as the solutions. What I love, though, about what you’re saying, too, is that you really involved your team in co-creating the solution, which is a wonderful way to lead a team. I think now, I think the coronavirus gives us a real opportunity to get closer, not only with our team, but also with our customers and be able to reach out to our customers and just say, “Hey, look, what’s going on with you? How can we help you right now? How can we be more relevant?” And really deepen that relationship, right?
Anna Cabeca: I agree.
Melinda Wittstock: Because the folks who do that right now, even if business is slow or halted or whatever, those folks will be back because people remember that kind of goodwill and just kindness. As you say, operating from a place of love.
Anna Cabeca: Mm-hmm (affirmative). It’s also touching in, like what is it that fuels me? For me, it is that service heart. My gifts are acts of service. That is how I know I’m loved, and that is how I give love. So, for me, it’s showing up daily for free, doing my Facebook lives, answering questions, being there for people that need me and just need to hear from me or to hear the word of the day or whatever it may be. For me, that has given me … I need to know that I’m helping others, and that fills me. It may be different for everyone else, but for me, that was really important.
Anna Cabeca: And following my truth and honestly my mission statement, now more than ever regardless of the bottom line, it is what has helped us and helped my team. They’ve held on. Everyone is in 100%, and we know that we’re there for each other and take to heart that we are serving a wide group of people around the world did that need us now more than ever, and to sell anything, but to provide a service, to provide a ear, to provide a solution that we 100%, each and everyone of us, believe in. I think that’s what makes us really powerful as entrepreneurs. Number one, we believe in what we have to offer, and we are consistent with our messages. We show up for those who we serve.
Melinda Wittstock: I want to pick up a little bit, Dr. Anna, on your true superhero powers. You’ve described a number of them, but just in menopause and sexual health and integrative medicine, all these things, there are so many women who are on this podcast and listen to this podcast who, I don’t know, just kind of push the envelope in their 20, 30s, 40s, got to their late 40s early 50s and had nothing left in the tank, like no hormones left. That would be me. I’ll put my hand up there, early 50s. It’s like, “What a minute.” I really don’t have any hormones left, and it’s been a journey through bioidentical hormones and integrative medicine and all that to just rebalance and get that back, which I have done. What happens to women there? How come with hit that wall?
Anna Cabeca: This is so important, and I love your authenticity and vulnerability around this point because we’re not alone in this. You and I have both been there, right? And women listening, right? We are so highly functioning, so good at what we do, so intelligent that we compensate really well and often ignore, we put blinders on, to the actual transition, transformation and pain that we may be experiencing. We ignore it for a long time until we can’t ignore it any longer. That is certainly not the example we want to set for our children. I think of that. I think of that having four daughters. I think of that on a regular basis.
Anna Cabeca: With that said, it is this time of transition in our lives, hormonal transition in our life is something to be honored. We don’t want to squash it. What’s the word? Squash it?
Melinda Wittstock: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Anna Cabeca: We don’t want to squelch it anymore than we would want to squelch puberty because puberty is not a disease. Menopause is not a disease. It is an important transformation. It is an important rite of passage in our lives. I love how in this menopausal transition, it can be a period of, especially when we’re denying our transformation, that it is painful and uncomfortable, to say the least, can be true hell, for sure. But if we are burning the candle at both edges, if we are serving others and not listening to what our body needs, mine … Not just our body, not just our physiology, but our emotions, our spirit, and our relationships, if we’re not honoring the many aspects of our personality and ourselves in our life, then we really can have a tortuous time during this transition, but it is so important.
Anna Cabeca: The Japanese call it … If I remember the word correctly, it’s like [foreign language 00:28:30], and it means second spring. I love that word. Menopause is second spring to the Japanese, and that’s powerful. I mean, that is really powerful. This is a time, really, that we flourish. I usually give the analogy of the caterpillar. This time of in our 20s, 30s, 40s, we’re like that caterpillar running along, all our legs moving, many different things. We are multitasking, man, to get things done, and then we have to cocoon and struggle to come out of the cocoon in order to emerge the butterfly and to have that freedom, that wisdom, that second spring.
Melinda Wittstock: Well, I see a lot of women really coming into their own in entrepreneurs in their 50s, having gone through menopause. It’s almost like a freeing thing.
Anna Cabeca: Mm-hmm (affirmative). [inaudible 00:29:22].
Melinda Wittstock: As long as you get … so for me, it wasn’t that bad or anything, other than there was all this mysterious weight gain. I’m like, “Wait a minute. I’m exercising. I’m eating all the right things. I’m doing all this stuff. What on earth?” And when I finally had the hormones looked at and tested, there was no way I could have lost any weight because there was just no way, right? So all that had to be rebalanced, and everything came back to normal. I feel really, really great.
Anna Cabeca: And you’re living in your passion and your purpose, right?
Melinda Wittstock: That’s true, too, yes.
Anna Cabeca: And you’re accomplishing a whole other definition of your life, a whole other business even. I mean, you are definitely flourishing at this time in your life. Because, number one, we accept that transition, accept the rewiring and acknowledge that we have to do some things differently now that we didn’t have to do in our 20s and 30s. By doing these things, it makes us stronger, right, more in tune and more aware, more awake and less tolerance that you have to deal with.
Melinda Wittstock: Well, that’s true, too. I like that, in a way, less tolerant. I used to think … Actually, it was one of my first ever therapists that I went to in the middle of a terrible divorce and really I had, in this marriage, had really lost my confidence because I had suffered through a lot of narcissistic gaslighting and that sort of thing, right? I remember bragging, sort of unconsciously, saying of how much I could tolerate. “Look at me. I can tolerate this, and I can tolerate that. I’m resilient about this.” You know what I mean? And it was like a badge of honor.
Melinda Wittstock: The therapist, who was a holistic therapist said, “You really want to live a life of tolerance? Think of what that word means.” And it rocked my world because … Sorry. Kid just slammed a door there. It rocked my world because I realized suddenly, consciously, what I’d been doing is “No, I don’t want to just tolerate things. I want to live on purpose and in alignment with who I am.” It was fascinating, and that whole recovery began, actually, with gratitude and with humor and with all of that. So I think we do, as women, in our 20s and 30s, 40s even, try and do it all. Right?
Melinda Wittstock: All right, so it was interesting, though, healing through gratitude and finding that sense of self through the struggle and finding an acceptance of self, though, as well. Did you go through something similar to that? Because I see so many women coming into their own in their 50s, really as entrepreneurs, not really … Oh, I know what I was going to ask you. I’m sorry. I finally got it. Okay. Sorry about this, Anna. I’m just all over the place today.
Anna Cabeca: No, it’s awesome. Are you kidding? I’m following you.
Melinda Wittstock: I’m just like [crosstalk 00:33:35]
Anna Cabeca: I love someone who thinks like I do.
Melinda Wittstock: Am I? Yeah, a little, yeah, just crazy, like worked all day like you today, too. Okay, so here it goes, again. Again. It’s interesting to see so many women come into their own in their 50s in entrepreneurship, where I’d like to think we’re recovering from that kind of perfectionism thing that we had, this idea that we have to do it all to have it all, that we can start to really just focus on our true genius and let … hire the rest kind of, and find acceptance with things that we’re not necessarily very good at or we don’t really want to do, that we don’t have to do it all.
Anna Cabeca: Absolutely. It’s also letting go of the rest, right? Just being able to embrace the things that we do love, that we are excited about doing on a daily basis and not thinking about what are the … What’s the reward system for this? It’s just, “I am just doing it because I love doing this and I am passionate about it.” And not to mention, like for me, a lot of it is how do I want the next generation to live? And what do I want my four daughters, how do I want them to handle adversity? How do I want them to come through times of challenge? How do you want them to immerse from trauma?
Anna Cabeca: I mean, we’re going to be exposed to a tremendous amount of adversity in our life, whatever it is. Right now for us, it’s coronavirus. It’s this fear-driven society that we need to break away from. What women entrepreneurs are doing better than ever as they tune in to their own truth and to their own intuition, and like, “Oh, my God, I intuit this. When I follow my intuition, this leads me into greater joy, into greater alignment with my purpose, and to a breaking free of that fearful society because I am in tune with my giftings. I am in with my intuition.” And women in the perimenopause, menopause and beyond, do this better than anyone. Once we’re through, and even through, during, this menopausal transition that I write I about, blog about, commiserate about, we find these giftings.
Anna Cabeca: When we’re in alignment, that is … I mean, it’s true brilliance, and it’s inspiration, and it’s inspiring. This is where you create a whole new system of communicating or whole new system of being, and you do it with love and joy. It’s service. It’s connection. And I always focus on the hormonal aspect. It’s oxytocin. Oxytocin, the hormone of love bonding and connection, not to be confused with oxycodone, the hormone of suffering, pain, and everything else. Right?
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, the oxytocin is interesting, though, too because we release it, women do, when we collaborate with each other.
Anna Cabeca: Yes. Yes, the rising tide floats all boats like that.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah. And getting us out of that old scarcity where there were so few jobs at the top level or leadership positions for women in the past. It forced women into this competition with each other rather than doing what we naturally do best is collaborate, where we release that lovely, feel-good chemical.
Anna Cabeca: Yes, absolutely. And also, the competing in a world that is male-dominated, for example, as a physician or as an executive or as an administrator, as a business owner. I came to small town Georgia as the only bilingual physician that had stepped foot in this area, and to compete with the old-boys club, so to speak, in a very gracious and feminine way. It was, I mean, I didn’t expect this stuff. You know what I mean? And it was just having, being able to collaborate with other women. Being able to collaborate and lead as a woman has been a transition over my three decades of medical practice. Owning that feminine energy has, honestly, enabled me to succeed in a way that I never otherwise would have.
Melinda Wittstock: I love it. So I want to make sure that we have time to talk about your new book. Tell me all about it.
Anna Cabeca: Well and you had mentioned earlier that transition of menopause when you’re gaining weight, despite doing anything different. That’s what I experienced. I had an early menopause at 39, with a diagnosis of infertility, and basically when around the world to learn traditional medicines and serendipitously met with traditional healers as well as some of the world’s leading scientists. With that, I brought that information back into my medical practice as a gynecologist and obstetrician, also, reversing infertility, reversing early menopause, to have a baby at 41.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, my goodness. That explains your young one.
Anna Cabeca: Yes, that explains the young one. I currently am 53 with a 12-year-old, homeschooling, which I said I would never do again.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, I’ve got a 13-year-old, and I guess I’m in the middle of the homeschooling. I’ve got a 13 and a 16, so I started late.
Anna Cabeca: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Mm-hmm (affirmative). I know. I’m thankful for my oldest daughters to help the young one right now, especially as I’m in the midst of book launch. Then at 48, I started having this spiral down, experiencing what so many women experiencing in this hormonal transition. It’s that they’re coming in and telling me, “Dr. Anna, I’m gaining five, 10, 20 pounds, and I’m not doing anything different. What the heck is going on?” When that happened to me, after having reversed early menopause, after having lost 80 pounds and kept it off for nearly a decade, to have that weight gain back, not to mention, honestly, the brain fog, the irritability, the mood swings, the memory loss, and for me, when we’re so highly reliant on our intelligence, to start to feel that drift away and think, “Oh, my God, is this early dementia? Is this Alzheimer’s? What the hell’s happening?” It’s really hormonal.
Anna Cabeca: So as I experienced that and did my research and did my self-experimentation as many breakthroughs are often started, I discovered what I call my Keto-Green Way. My new book coming out is Keto Green 16, and it stems from that journey of addressing the hormonal changes that we’re experiencing in the perimenopause that can really affect our lives. And while transition is necessary, this transition in hormones is necessary, we can do it really well, or we can do it really poorly. Through 90% lifestyle changes, we can do it really, really well. 90% of it lifestyle, and then the other 10% let’s tweak with my bioidentical hormone regimes that are like the icing on the cake type of idea.
Anna Cabeca: But that, just going through that, that makes a huge difference in our cognition and our ability. Seriously, Melinda, you didn’t know me five years ago, but I was falling into this deep, dark well. I was getting depressed, moody, irritable, and gaining weight. I had this brain, and I was near broke. Here I am now, turned around my life, turned around my family. I’m in the best relationships with my family that I’ve ever been in my life, hence five women under one roof right now. Let’s talk about that. But also transforming, being able to recreate, reinvent myself. Going from a burnt out OBGYN to a seven-figure business that is a service-based business through programs, products, and inspiration, and maybe some entertainment and humor in there, too.
Melinda Wittstock: It’s amazing, though. It’s amazing how quickly one can turn around because not so long ago, like I said, I was in this horrific marriage. I had four bucks in the bank. My money had been taken from me. Long, sorry story, a lot of listeners to this podcast have heard my story before, so I don’t really want to go bore them with it again, but amazing the turnaround, quickly. So anything’s possible. For any of you listening right now who are in a bad situation, hormonal or otherwise, or just in a struggle or having some sort of issue, health or otherwise, financial, it can be turned around and turned around quickly because you’re listening to two women who’ve done that. It is possible.
Anna Cabeca: It is absolutely possible. Never give up hope, and always I always say, especially now, understanding what is the most valuable things to me in my life right now. Typically, it’s not material, right? The most valuable … And if it is, we have to do some work. There’s checks and balances we have to do on ourselves if something is really material. But what is it that we’re so grateful for? I mean, it’s our intelligence. It’s a strong, healthy body. It’s our family that loves us. It’s the family that we love. It’s the love that we’ve experienced in our life, all the goodness, and when we focus on those things, I mean, it is not soft science. It is hard science. It is rewiring. It is neurologically empowering to do those principles. That helps us get out of this deep, dark well of fear, despair, and uncertainty. That’s where we need to go. We need to shift to a physiology that is oxytocin dominant so that we heal our hormones and we heal our life and we experience the joy that we so deserve, no matter what’s happening around us, no matter what other people are experiencing as well.
Melinda Wittstock: Absolutely. Absolutely right. My goodness. Okay, so Dr. Anna, I mean, I could talk to you forever.
Anna Cabeca: Me, too.
Melinda Wittstock: You’re going to have to come back on here.
Anna Cabeca: I would love to.
Melinda Wittstock: Yes. Well, I want to make sure that people can find you, get your products, connect with you, all of that. What’s the best way?
Anna Cabeca: So easy to find me, dranna.com, so D-R-A-N-N-A.com. That’s my website. Also, Instagram @drannacabaca, and I have a great Keto-Green community on Facebook at Dr. Anna C. So I’m available. I love it. I love communicating. I’ve currently been doing daily lives because I’ve just been called to do that and just showing up daily, and it’s been fun. It’s been good stuff, so just connecting. I think really, for me, connection has been an important part of my healing, and that’s also my gifting. So I look forward to connecting with everyone listening.
Melinda Wittstock: Ah. Oh, my goodness. How beautiful. Thank you so very much, Anna, for putting on your wings and flying with us.
Anna Cabeca: Thank you, Melinda. Thanks for having me.
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