Did you ever wonder how certain plants have the incredible ability to heal both your brain and body?

Or perhaps you’ve been curious about how smells can directly trigger systems in your brain, promoting overall well being?

In today’s Thin Thinking episode, join me in this captivating interview with Jodi Cohen, founder of Vibrant Blue Oils, renowned functional practitioner who combines aromatherapy with the power of essential oils derived from plants.

With her experiences over the past 10 years, she has helped over 50,000 clients heal from brain related challenges, including anxiety, insomnia, autoimmunity, appetite, inflammation, and so much more.

She will also share the transformative effects of oils extracted from specific plants and plant oil blends.

So, grab your nostrils and come on into this enlightening episode of the Thin Thinking Podcast.



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Rita Black: Did you ever wonder how certain plants can heal your brain and body? Or did you wonder how smell can literally trigger systems in your brain for wellbeing? This, along with how a zebra can calm themselves down way more effectively than we humans can, is all a part of my fascinating interview with Jodi Cohen, a functional practitioner who combines aromatherapy and the power of essential oil derived from plants to help with anxiety, appetite, sleep, inflammation, and much, much more. So, grab your nostrils and come on into this enlightening episode of the Thin Thinking Podcast.

Rita Black: Did you know that our struggle with weight doesn't start with the food on your plate or get fixed in the gym? 80% of our weight struggle is mental. That's right. The key to unlocking long-term weight release and management begins in your mind. Hi there, I'm Rita Black. I'm a clinical hypnotherapist weight loss expert, best-selling author, and the creator of the Shift Weight Mastery Process. And not only have I helped thousands of people over the past 20 years achieve long-term weight mastery, I am also a former weight struggler, carb addict and binge eater. And after two decades of failed diets and fad weight loss programs, I lost 40 pounds with the help of hypnosis. Not only did I release all that weight, I have kept it off for 25 years. Enter the Thin Thinking Podcast where you too will learn how to remove the mental roadblocks that keep you struggling. I'll give you the thin thinking tools, skills, and insights to help you develop the mindset you need, not only to achieve your ideal weight, but to stay there long term and live your best life.

Rita Black: Welcome, welcome. Come on in. Happy, happy to have you here today. The week that this episode drops, we are heading into July next week and the deep summer, as I like to call it, deep Summer July is the month where everyone goes on vacation from their lives and from their weight management, as well as summer functions heat up and travel plans are happening. So make sure that you are getting your dose of Thin Thinking every week to stay on track. And in July, we are gonna explore emotional eating and how to manage it. So stay tuned. Please stay tuned through July. So in July, I will also be rolling out my new emotional eating hypnosis program process package. I'm not quite sure what to call it, but it's a collection of some hypnosis sessions, meditations, and coachings about shifting out of emotional eating. So I haven't quite labeled it or branded it yet, but that's the general gist of what you're gonna be getting. And we are gonna be giving away one of these packages, processes, whatever we decide to call it, in a drawing after the 15th of July.

Rita Black: So how do I get into that drawing Rita? You ask. Well, simply write a review of the Thin Thinking Podcast and post it on your listing platform. And this is important, you know, you've gotta post it on the platform. You can't just send me a copy of the review. It has to be posted on a platform. Sorry, but that's the rule. Because just sending it to me in a review, I cannot put it on there. You have to do it yourself. I wish I could, I know sometimes it's confusing how to send a review, but literally you go to Apple, you go to Spotify, it's right there. Write a review, write it, take a photo screenshot and send it to me at [email protected], and you will get a free hypnosis download in return. And we'll also be entered in to the drawing for that emotional shift out of emotional eating. So get writing that review.

Rita Black: Now, speaking of emotions and nerves, I'm excited to introduce my guest today on the Thin Thinking Podcast, who's gonna walk us through how oils from certain plants and plant oil blends can help us with allergies, inflammation, anxiety, appetite, and even sleep. I didn't know, I will be honest with you, I didn't know much about aromatherapy and essential oils. I know maybe some of you really do and you've been into that, but that has just kind of gone under my radar. But I have to say, I am now super fascinated with this conversation I had with Jodi. I met Jodi through a friend who recommended her to me because she had helped so many people around her. I was like, well, who is this woman? I wanna meet her. So Jodi Sternoff Cohen is a bestselling author, award-winning journalist, functional practitioner, and the founder of Vibrant Blue Oils, where she has combined her training in nutritional therapy and aromatherapy to create unique proprietary blends of organic and wildcrafted essential oils.

Rita Black: She has helped over 50,000 clients heal from brain related challenges, including anxiety, insomnia, and autoimmunity. For the past 10 years, she has lectured at wellness centers, conferences, and corporations on brain health, essential oils, stress and detoxification. She has been seen in the New York Times Wellness Mama Elephant Journal and numerous publications. Her website, vibrantblueoils.com, is visited by over 300,000 natural health seekers every year, and she has rapidly become a top resource for essential oils education on the internet today. Please welcome Jodi Cohen.

Rita Black: Hello, Jodi. Thank you so much for coming here and being on the Thin Thinking Podcast today. I'm really excited about talking to you about essential oils.

Jodi Cohen: Oh, I'm thrilled. I'm excited to like share more and especially as it relates to your listeners.

Rita Black: Oh, well, cool. Yeah! And we were just talking, Jodi and I, about, she's a Seattle native, as am I, so wish we're exchanging Seattle information. So I am embarrassingly undereducated about essential oils, aromatherapy or using aroma as a way of healing. And so I'm really, really fascinated by this. And the more I read about you and what you're up to, because you're really so deeply into this and know so much about it, can you just tell me, like, and my listeners who don't know anything about this, like what is essential oils and aromatherapy? Like, give us a little background first.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah, so essential oils are the concentrated essences of plants. So what that means, if you were to go in a lavender field and cut some of the lavender flowers and put it into a pot of boiling water, the steam is gonna rise and the oil is going to be slightly heavier than the water. So it would go down one side, and then the water, which is a hydrocil, would go down the other. And so it takes like, you know, it would be about 50 cups of peppermint tea, that's like one drop of peppermint oil. So it's super, super concentrated. And what people may or may not know is that plants are really the basis for over 50% of the pharmaceutical drugs. Like white willow became aspirin, valerian root became valium. So we were kind of looking to plants as our original medicine and remedies, you know, and then drug companies just came along and, you know, basically formed something similar.

Jodi Cohen: And so plants are very healing. You know. Anyone who's had kind of a tummy ache, who had a cup of peppermint tea or ginger tea can tell you that, you know, anyone who was having any kind of respiratory issue who might've smelled eucalyptus, we know these work. And what I'm trying to do is take the guesswork out of it. So interestingly, a lot of the research on oils and how they work and what they work for looks at blends, which means more than one oil. So not just peppermint, but peppermint in combination with citrus, you know, and when you combine them, it's a little bit like a recipe. Like, I mean, you can obviously have salad dressing that's just olive oil and that's delicious. Or you can add some vinegar in and maybe some seasoning and some other things, and the more you layer in different flavors, the more robust the experience is.

Jodi Cohen: And so when you combine oils, like our most popular blend is clove, which is super stimulatory, and lyme, and the reason we combine them, clove has medium-sized molecules. So if you put it on your skin, it will take like 15 to 20 minutes to get through. Lyme has very small molecules, so if you put it on your skin, it's like an acupuncture needle. It gets in immediately. And so when you combine those two, you get kind of the amazing healing properties of the clove and the carrying into the skin quickly, properties of the lime. So that's what I'm really looking at, is helping people kind of not only find medicinal things to help your body returned to balance, but also the most effective mechanism to get them into the system so you can heal quickly.

Rita Black: I am so fascinated by this, and as you're speaking, I remember we did, ancestry.com and I, we found out my great-great-great grandmother actually was a medicine woman in Alton, Illinois, and she was renowned for helping people with skin rashes and with allergies. So, you know, I bet she was doing some of the same things you are, but probably in a very much more remedial way. So tell me how you, cause it sounds like you didn't start out in the essential oil world. Like how did you find your way into this? I'm curious about that. I always like to know how people find their way into what they do.

Jodi Cohen: Well, it's funny how, you know, I used to always think I was healthy. Like I was a student athlete and I tried to eat healthy and exercise. And you know, but I also was kind of that you can sleep when you die type of person, like overachiever, you know, no rest for the weary, which, you know, worked until it didn't, basically. When my younger child was about two years old, my first child was super easy and I just thought I was this great mom. And so I had a second one like 22 months later, and he was really a different species. He was not easy and he had no impulse control and it was really hard to get him to focus. And he was a sensory seeker, which meant he liked to touch other people even when they didn't like to be touched.

Jodi Cohen: And it was just a lot and none of the parenting books that I read seemed to really make a difference. And one day, we were at a birthday party, I believe, at the zoo, and one of my friends complimented me that he was doing really well that day. And I had that proud mom moment for maybe two minutes until another mom started passing out snacks. And it was a Ritz cracker. He ate the cracker, chuckle, hide it, and just took off sprinting toward the jaguars, which were his favorite. And so, you know, I had to run after him, grab him, bring him back, and my friend who I was talking to said, you know, I've never seen him Jekyll hide so quickly after eating something, you should take him to a nutritionist. My brother was on Ritalin his whole life and it turned out he was just allergic to weird foods.

Jodi Cohen: And I thought, yeah, that's easy, I can do that. I've done everything else. Took him to a nutritionist who told us that he was sensitive to corn, soy and dairy. We changed his diet and the next day his personality changed and my mind was so blown because, you know, you really, as a mom, I really was investing in my children and I couldn't believe, I probably had taken like, you know, seven different parenting classes, read like 50 books, you know, our big cue as we used to point our nose and say, look at my nose. And he couldn't look at our nose. And the next day he could look at my nose and I'm like, I had no idea food had such an impact on behavior and I was so interested. I wound up going back and getting a degree in nutritional therapy because, you know, I really wanted, I have never felt like such a failure at anything in my life.

Jodi Cohen: But, you know, having that kid who did those things, it was really rough and I wanted to help other parents who were in that dilemma. And so in the process of getting degree in nutritional therapy, I learned a ton about physiology and organ function and was really you know, quite interested in how does the body work and when symptoms arise, what's causing it. And then my ex-husband basically was bipolar and it got to the point where I really thought he might die on my watch. And so I had him, I moved him to a residential treatment facility and once I knew he was safe and it wasn't my job to keep him safe, it was like I had been running, you know, a 10 year marathon and I just crossed the finish line. But I was so exhausted and depleted.

Jodi Cohen: I had no energy to be a mom, to be a class parent, to be an employee. And I knew from my studies that this had to do with my adrenal glands and my hypothalamus. And so I was ingesting all the right food and all the right remedies and it really didn't do anything. And I was getting worried, you know, I'm a good researcher, I'm good at figuring things out. And luckily for me, a friend of mine who was into essential oils had been planning to give me this thank you gift I'd helped her with a fundraiser and it was all oils. And you know, when she dropped it off, she said, you know, you have been so high stress for so long, which means that your body's pumping out cortisol and cortisol can cause systemic inflammation. And when your gut's inflamed, like no matter what remedy you're ingesting, it's probably not getting digested, absorbed and assimilated.

Jodi Cohen: But oils are different. You know, you can smell them, they go directly to the brain. The nasal passageways are basically the elevator of the brain. The easiest way to access the brain when you topically apply on the skin, it gets right in, you know, to the system, which is why nicotine patches and hormone creams work. Like, try this. And I thought, well, you know, what do I have to lose? And I had gotten pretty good, I'd actually taken in Seattle, you know, they've got best year and they have all these muscle testing courses, which are basically an expedited way to figure out what the priority is, which was super helpful for little squirmy kids, you know. So I kind of muscle tested the box. Will anything in here help my adrenals? And I normally get one remedy, it's usually pretty clear. I kept getting the same five.

Jodi Cohen: And that confused me until it occurred to me, wait a minute, they're liquids. I can combine them like a mixed drink, you know? And I literally went to my kitchen, grabbed a shot glass, kind of started muscle testing, you know, five drops of this, seven of this, put it together in the shot glass and put 'em on my low back. Cause I knew that's where the adrenals were the most accessible. And I had one of those moments where I went from like, I'm so tired, I don't know if I can put in the effort to climb the stairs to my bedroom to like, maybe I can go run a mile. I kinda feel good. I can do this. So I went on a run and then I was like, maybe I can go to the supermarket, maybe I can clean the house, maybe I can do a laundry and put it away.

Jodi Cohen: You know? All those things that as moms we do like every day, but sometimes it just feels like too much. So I got an exceptional amount done that day and kind of felt like myself again. And so when I was lying in bed that night, I was like, that really worked. Like, I wonder what else I could do. So I started just formulating things and using them to heal myself. And when I got better, all of my friends that were trying to help me and were kind of aware of my dilemma asked like, Hey, what did you do? You know, Hey, can we try this on other people? And it worked on other people. So I literally just decided, okay, you know, I'm gonna just put this out there. I'll write a blog and, you know, started it actually from my kitchen table.

Rita Black: That is amazing. What a powerful story. So tell me this. So it's intriguing now I wanna know more. So when you're smelling an oil or using an oil talk, talk about how it impacts the brain and how it impacts the body. Like how does it do that?

Jodi Cohen: So, you know, smell is actually critical to survival. You smell food, you smell water, you smell predator odor, you smell fire. And because of that like necessity to have you know, for smell to kind of signal your brain of your five senses, smell has the most direct access to the emotional part of your brain, your amygdala. The other four senses have to kind of travel through the thalamus first and then get passed along to the amygdala. This is why, you know, for any listeners who sometimes you smell something and all of a sudden it takes you immediately to that spot. Like my grandparents grew up in in Brooklyn, and whenever I smell mothballs I think of their apartment, I'm like, it's suddenly like I'm five years old in Brooklyn, you know, and I know a lot of people have that intense smell memory and it's survival related, but why this is helpful with oils is because you can smell something like orange is a great one and it immediately kind of, all citrus oils tend to be uplifting. So it gets into the brain and suddenly you are in kind of a math mood, you know, or in Seattle, if it's one of those cloudy, overcast days and we're like, I'm feeling a little sad, suddenly you're not. Suddenly you're okay.

Rita Black: That is fascinating. And of course that makes total sense to me because smell I think is our memory and smell goes back the furthest or is the most distinct.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah.

Rita Black: Smell evokes the most clear memories. I don't know exactly.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. It's true.

Rita Black: Yeah. And so and then also on the body. So if you're applying something to your body, how does that get into the body? Like you mentioned applying it to your back. Are there different points of entry for different cures? I'm assuming there is.

Jodi Cohen: This is one thing that I'm the most excited about because I feel like this is so misunderstood. Like most people assume that in order, you know, we know that like say, we injure our wrist or something and maybe we put a cortisone cream on the wrist, we know that it makes the wrist feel better, but it doesn't necessarily travel through the bloodstream to other areas of the body. So we think that topical is useful only for like local application, right? Not systemic. And most people assume it would need to get into the blood, be carried from the, you know, the blood to the heart, then be pumped systemically. And that's not wrong. But what I've also noticed is there are all these reflux points that people use in acupuncture, and if you apply an oil on a reflux point, it has a systemic impact.

Jodi Cohen: So for example, if you put our adrenal blend on the adrenal glands on the low back, it affects the adrenal glands and then has a systemic effect. There's a point that I like behind the ear on that bone acupuncture points are always kind of divots so you can feel it that has a systemic effect of how helping your body kind of shift out of a danger and fight and flight into safety gear. So that's what I'm really doing is I'm creating kind of proprietary blends, not just one oil doing it for you and then telling you exactly where to put it to help the body shift back in balance.

Rita Black: So you, yeah, and this is something that I read with you, like you are obsessed with blends and that single oils may be -

Jodi Cohen: They're fine, there's nothing wrong with them.

Rita Black: Right. But you are diving deeper, you're using different blends. And like you said, like for instance, the lime and clove, that's gonna help deliver the clove faster into the body than just the clove on its own.

Jodi Cohen: Exactly.

Rita Black: So now how does one, so there's many different applications of using essential oil. Like, I know you can ingest it, I know you can put on your body, you can just smell it. Like, so if you, if you were like for every single, cause I know I'm gonna ask you more about all the different ways that you can use essential oils to heal. But if, just give me for an example, like you put on your back, that's a direct application, onto the skin for the adrenal glands. Are there ones that you would just smell the essential oil?

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. And you know, my favorite, like, here's what I really think. If it's not easy, people don't do it. Like we all have supplement graveyards, all these remedies that we just, and so what I really try to do is like, let's make it as easy as possible for you to actually use this. Let's put it in a small bottle that you can carry in your pocket. Let's just do something that you're, let's meet you where you're at. You know? If you're not gonna remember, let's have you put it by your toothbrush. Because the easiest way to start a new habit is to marry it to an old habit. So just use it when you brush your teeth twice a day. You know? If you're like me prone to anxiety attacks, you can smell it through the left nostril. And this is something for that I learned from a friend of mine, Titus Chew, who is a functional neurologist.

Jodi Cohen: There is a whole branch of chiropractic that's actually trying to stimulate different areas of the brain. So anyone who is prone to anxiety or panic attacks, that is your right frontal lobe, your right forehead, that's kind of over activating. So the way you calm that, put it into balance, is you do something to activate your left frontal lobe, your left forehead. And the easiest way to do that is literally take your right thumb, plug your right nostril, smell anything. It can be an oil, it can literally be, you know the citrus oils live in the fruit of the citrus fruit? So you can peel an orange and just smell that, it doesn't matter. Smell it through your left nostril. Smelling, you know, how if you're ever starving and you go to a restaurant and they bring the salad, by the time you're done with the salad, you're slightly less starving. You know? You can get satiated from smell also. So hold it about an inch below your nose, smell three to five times. What this is doing is it's stimulating your left frontal lobe, balancing the two hemispheres of the brain, and suddenly you're less anxious and less panicked.

Rita Black: Oh, that is amazing. Now you mentioned appetite, because I know we are a weight management podcasts. Like, does smell also impact, well, obviously smell impacts our appetite but how can you use essential oils to manage weight? Like I know you do, like you have a blood sugar essential oil or something that helps with blood sugar management. Like, just tell us a little bit about how you would do that and how that impacts the brain. I'm very curious.

Jodi Cohen: So the best research for the listeners is on peppermint and cinnamon oil. Peppermint oil, there's a ton of research that's smelling peppermint oil kind of calms appetite. So if you're trying to stop snacking between meals or not snack before bed, just smelling peppermint can help with that. And you can even, I'm not a huge fan of diffusing because I think it's wasteful. I think you don't need as much. But if you want to, like the way I tell people to do it if they really want to, is have a little pile of salt and a really small little dish. It can be like, you know, a sushi size dipper thing and just put a dropper to a peppermint and just keep that near you and that's great. The blood sugar control is peppermint and cinnamon and celery seed and basically you can just put a little drop on the inside of your cheek and it helps to calm appetite. And I know this works because you and I are both from Seattle. My kids both used to play select soccer, which meant sometimes I would have to drive an hour in traffic to the middle of nowhere. And imagine the fun and the joy of having a pool full of children who suddenly decide that they're starving and you have no food in that car, but you might have this oil. And so you suggest they try that and it works. And I can tell you if it's working on teenage children, it works.

Rita Black: That is amazing. I love that. Now, why celery seed? That's really curious to me. Like celery seed, and I know cinnamon helps with blood sugar regulation, right? Like it can help with that. But celery, that's really interesting.

Jodi Cohen: I think it's a combination of it drains lymphatics. I think that's sometimes when the body balance is out, like you're less prone to crave, you know, like need things that might pull you further out of balance, (inaudible) good one because, and pancreas, sometimes what's happening is it's blood sugar, you know, if youre blood sugar is fluctuating, you know, you wanna grab food because it's another way to kinda manage your blood sugar and then also sleep. If you're struggling to either fall asleep or stay asleep, then you're understandably fatigued and so you need like sugar or food to kind of keep you awake.

Rita Black: Yeah. Okay. So now a little more of that. I'm gonna put a pin in that I wanna ask you about. Like, I think you have a flagship essential oil that really helps with the parasympathetic.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah.

Rita Black: Tell me about that and tell us, like, if I was a listener who didn't even know what the parasympathetic. Just educate us a little bit about that because I hear like, I went on your website and I saw all these testimonials. I mean, she's got amazing testimonials about everything. Sleep, nerves, anxiety, helping their kids get to sleep. I mean, it's really amazing what you do. I mean, it's really, really cool. I love learning about this. So, but tell us about the parasympathetic, cause this is like your main, I mean, what people, you're known for. I mean, you're known for a lot. You're known also for your professionalism and your integrity with your product. But, tell us about the parasympathetic because I'm really curious.

Jodi Cohen: Before, I mean I'll just preface this with a quick story. So when my kids were little, you know, I was super stressed. Basically, in order to be healthy, you need to eat, sleep and move right? And calm your stress. Because when you are stressed, that throws everything off. So these doctors would be like, you need to calm your stress. You know, and I had a bipolar husband, two busy kids, a full-time career, you know, laundry that needed to be done, meals that needed to be cooked. And I would joke like, what am I gonna do? Go to like a spa and relax for an hour and then come home and I still need to drive carpool and do all these things and I'm not firing, you know, I'm not divorcing my husband at this time. I'm not firing my children. It was like my life was stressful, but I wasn't gonna drop any of the stress in my life.

Jodi Cohen: And then I realized that it didn't really matter what stress was going on because I could switch my response to it. So for anyone who like has ever been driving and someone cuts you off and you're like, well, you know, I'm fine. I'm not in a hurry, I hope they get there safely. You really don't care. You're totally good. And then the next day, the exact same situation may happen, and four letter words are flying out of your mouth. The only variable in that situation is you and how able you are to be resilient in that moment. So your ability to be resilient in that moment is dependent upon your autonomic nervous system. Your autonomic nervous system control is your automatic functions. Your heart rate, your digestion, your breathing, all these things that we do unconsciously that we don't need to think about. And it's really designed to keep us alive.

Jodi Cohen: And what that means is it prioritizes safety and survival. So, for example, you know, they talk about the lion chasing you down the street. I don't see very many lions chasing you down the street, but I do notice that when I turn on the news and see a school shooting, I suddenly think, is that gonna happen to someone I love? You know? And it's not just physical danger, it can be anticipatory stress, the idea that someone you love might get killed going to school or you know, someone you love might get sick and wind up on a respirator. All of these things kind of trigger our stress and our safety response. And that is what is known as the sympathetic fight or flight branch of your autonomic nervous system. And ideally what happens is, you know, you're driving, someone's about to change lanes, they don't see you, you honk, you break, you don't get in an accident.

Jodi Cohen: You know? You basically mobilize your resources for survival, sympathetic, you know. Your eyesight changes. Blood is routed away from digestion towards your arms and your legs. And then the danger passes and you shift back into that parasympathetic rest digest heel mode. There's a great book that you can actually get for free online. It's called Zebras Don't Get Ulcers. And it talks about in the wild how the lion chases the zebra, the zebra escapes, and then he lies on the ground and shakes. You might see your dogs do this, you know, they bark at another dog and they shake. What they're doing when they're shaking is they're recalibrating, they're shifting out of sympathetic fight or flight into parasympathetic rest and digest, and then they're able to heal and move along.

Jodi Cohen: We as humans, sadly don't do that. We take every stress, you know, we have a fight with our mother and our kids having a bad day and our husband can't find something. And we have a deadline at work and it just piles on additive and cumulative and we're kind of shaking all day and we never, even when we go to bed at night, we don't kind of chill and get out of it. And what I'm super excited about is that we can control our physiology. The gear shift between that fight or flight. I'm in danger, I need to shake. And the parasympathetic rest, digest, chill, the guy cut me off and I'm completely fine, is our vagus nerve. It's the longest nerve in our body, that most people have never heard of. Cranial nerve number 10. It starts, it connects the brain to the body. So it starts at the very base of the neck back of the head splits and if you feel with me right now behind your ear lobe, on both sides, there's a little divot between the earlobe and the bone.

Jodi Cohen: That's your mastoid bone. That is where your vagus nerve is the most accessible to the surface. And that's the application point I like to use. From there, your vagus nerve wise through your throat, your heart, your lungs, every organ of digestion and detoxification. And a lot of people, there's been a lot of research about stimulating your vagus nerve to activate your parasympathetic nervous system. So it's a little bit you know, you would think that you should sedate to calm down, but you actually stimulate to calm down.

Rita Black: Interesting.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. There's actually a New York neuroscientist that has surgically implanted a pacemaker lick device on that point. And the FDA has approved that for epilepsy, migraines, depression. There's a practitioner that I admire named Deis Ian, who for years was talking about, you know, like, gag yourself with a tongue depressor, terrify yourself, gargle until you know, you can't take it anymore, give yourself a coffee enema, all of these things, anywhere that the vagus nerve touches, can use to activate the vagus nerve. But shockingly, people were not lining up to do coffee enemas. But when, I know it's a surprise to me as well. But when I realized that they were surgically, like they were basically stimulating that point behind the ear lobe and it occurred to me like, wait a minute, oils are stimulatory, which can be perceived as hot. Like if you were to put, you know, peppermint, oregano, rosemary, thyme on your arm, it might feel warm, it might turn a little red. That's stimulatory. You know? Clove is one of them. So I started playing with you know, there's a way to kind of assess when you're in the parasympathetic state based on what your heart rate is doing. So I started testing and realized that this combination of clove and lyme, basically what you're doing is you're changing the temperature in your body. So, you know, there are still all the external stresses that are coming at you, but because you are shifting your nervous system out of that danger response into the resilient parasympathetic response, you're expanding your capacity to deal with it.

Rita Black: Wow. That's extraordinary. So, and as far as like past trauma, cause I read about trauma as well, like so that this can help with trauma or not release trauma per se.

Jodi Cohen: Well, it helps you, basically, what happens a lot of times is that when people have had trauma, they relive it. They relive that trauma loop.

Rita Black: Yeah. It gets trigered.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. And it helps you kind of unpack and get out of that. And, you know, friends of mine that are, that deal with weight loss, they talk about, you know, sometimes, like, especially if you were assaulted as a child, you know, you carry that extra weight cause it helps you protect yourself. And so you might be losing along, losing a ton of weight and then suddenly you hit a point where you suddenly feel like you're guinea.

Rita Black: And in danger.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. And so, you know, you hit a plateau because someone might find you attractive and therefore that's scary.

Rita Black: Yes, exactly. Interesting. Now how about things like I know you have blends for sleep and that is, what does that impact? I'm drawing, it's the circadian, right? It's the circadian. So tell me about that. I'm very fascinated cause I struggle a little bit with sleep, so, and my son really does. I know you're, I've read about all your people who use your oils for their children. I was like, Hmm, this is interesting. Yeah, tell us about the circadian.

Jodi Cohen: I mean, there's a ton of research about essential oils for sleep. A lot of people pick lavender cause it's very sedentary. And what I believe is if you don't know what's causing the problem, it's really hard to fix it. So with sleep, there are kind of four things that could be going on if you are, you know, having trouble falling asleep. If you're lying in bed, you're exhausted, but you're thinking about, okay, wait a minute, I need to drive carpool tomorrow. Oh gosh, I didn't do the laundry. And they need the soccer uniform and all your to-do list is kind of berating in your head. What's happening is the hormone that helps you fall asleep is melatonin and it's released by the pineal gland in response to darkness. Your hormones are kind of this lovely symphony that work together. So another hormone cortisol that's released when you're worried about your to-do list has kind of basically it's a juxtaposition of, you know, like if if cortisol is high, melatonin is low, if melatonin is high, cortisol is low and this is a nice harmony.

Jodi Cohen: Like cortisol is supposed to be high in the morning, so you have the energy to get up and get out of bed. And then during the day it's supposed to kind of have a nice rhythm. And then at night it's supposed to decline when the melatonin kicks in so that you can restfully fall asleep. So we have a blend called circadian rhythm that you're basically trying to apply around the head so that it accesses the pineal gland, which is in the middle of the brain. So you put it on the very top of the head on the skin, not on the ear, but right on the head above the ear, back of the head. I don't tell people to put oil on their face before they go to bed because if they toss and turn, I don't want oil to get into their eyes. But that helps you kind of naturally release melatonin and fall restfully asleep.

Jodi Cohen: If you are then waking up at 1:00 AM and you're so awake, you could go run a marathon or clean the kitchen, that is a blood sugar wake up that's called nocturnal hypoglycemia. So your blood sugar dips a little low, the adrenals kind of release emergency energy and it's in the blood. And now you are adrenalized and ready to do all these things. So to help the body naturally resolve that, you are going to use our pancreas oil, which supports the pancreas and helps carry the blood sugar out of the bloodstream and into the cells so that you're less energized, adrenalized if you're waking up around 3:00 AM maybe to use the bathroom and then you're able to fall back asleep. That is kind of, when you're detoxification organs are the most active, so your liver and your gallbladder. So what we do for that is we have a liver and gallbladder blend that you can apply before you go to bed, which helps you sleep through the night. Or if you wake up at that time, you just smell it and it helps you fall back asleep.

Rita Black: Oh wow. That's so cool.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. That also works with hormones, like if you have hot flashes or something like that.

Rita Black: Oh, well that's, I was gonna ask you about menopause. So, that would be something just to help balance out the hormones or?

Jodi Cohen: Basically with hormones, I mean, there's a number of things going on and oils are not hormones, but what you're really trying to do is you know, when your ovaries stop making estrogen, your adrenals take over. So anything you can do to really fortify the adrenals and give them more vitality helps. So the adrenal blend is good. We have a hypothalamus blend just kind of upstream from the adrenals. It controls the endocrine system. And then the other thing that you wanna do is you want kind of the old hormones to leave and not get recycled and reabsorbed. So anything you can do to support the detoxification organs, like the gallbladder and the liver, make sure that the old estrogen leaves doesn't get reabsorbed, you don't get estrogen dominant. So it just helps your body kind of naturally harmonize the hormones. And then rose draining is really good for hot flashes.

Rita Black: Okay. And are these things as well that you're putting on topically or you're -

Jodi Cohen: Topically or smelling. Yeah. Honestly, for hormones, it's sometimes easier to smell like because it's so immediate and you're so grateful when you're having a hot flashes super immediate.

Rita Black: I haven't had a hot flash in years, I'm happy to say, but I know a lot of our listeners do struggle with that still. So I can imagine, yeah, that instant relief would be amazing. I know allergies are also a really big thing with a lot of people and that essential oils can help with allergies. The histamine system, is that correct?

Jodi Cohen: Yeah, we have one, it's actually my favorite. It's called Histamine Balance. And it's interesting cause I live in Seattle, which gets so much rain that it kind of cleans the air. So we don't have tons of allergies here. But I I went to Jackson Hole for an event and wow, I have never sneezed so much in my life. I'm like, this is, wow, these poor people, this is what it feels like. But fortunately I had my histamine blend there, so I put it on the back of the neck, behind the ears. And then truthfully, there was one day when I was like, this is painful. And I tell people to take like a Q-tip and kind of the histamine balance is blue cause it's high in blue tanzi, which is amazing for allergies. Just kind of soak the Q-tip a little bit and then literally put it up in your nostrils and leave it there for up to 20 minutes. That worked. I was like, all right, winner. Yeah.

Rita Black: That's so funny. My husband, he has horrible allergies and a lot of times at night he snores because he gets inflamed. That would be great. I could just shove a tooth a q-tip up his nose.

Jodi Cohen: It's actually like, shockingly not that uncomfortable. It's really fascinating because you can kind of feel it, I mean obviously don't hurt anything, but just gently have it up the nose on either side.

Rita Black: I'm sure he would love waking up to two Q-tips hanging out of his nose. That would be funny. So, and then inflammation, which is another thing I believe our listeners are very interested in because of the arthritis, just inflammatory disease or just inflammation in general. How can essential oils help with something like inflammation?

Jodi Cohen: There is the best research on oils for inflammation like frankincense and ginger and dill. It's so good. So we have a blend called anti-inflammatory that you can topically apply. And then also the vagus nerve stimulation, parasympathetic, you know, it's we're all kind of this hormonal cascade. So when the vagus nerve is stimulated, it releases the anti-inflammatory neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which kind of sends the message to calm inflammation.

Rita Black: Mm. Wow. That's that. So you would put it on topically though? Like if you had, and if your knees were achy, then you would put that?

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. And I do like, I broke something for the first time in my entire life. Like last year it was really interesting. I broke my hand, a windowsill fell on it, and I'm like, all right, let's see how this works. Let's just play. And so I wound up using anti-inflammatory, which helped a lot. But then I also noticed like when something's injured, you wanna make sure that fluids are flowing, you know, the circulation is getting there. So I started putting circulation, actually all the oils and circulation are the ones that if you Google what to do for broken bone, they're in there so that it improved the blood flow to the injury. And then I started using our lymph, which helps kind of carry the debris away. And then the fascia, which is the connective tissue around it to kind of reset that, you know, it's almost like your phone is glitching. My hand was glitching, so I was trying to reboot the system, but it healed so quickly and so painlessly. I was kind of surprised at how effective that was. Not that I recommend breaking anything to try it, but yeah.

Rita Black: So that's so cool. And it just, so I had a question that popped into my mind about preventive. Like I remember there was a woman at my child, at my son's school when he was a little, I remember her telling me she was candidate from Toronto and she said, do this and you will never get a cold again. And when I feel like a cold is coming on, chop ginger, put it in the hot tea and just drink it. And she's like, I've never had, and I've used that for years. Is there something behind that? Because obviously I know ginger is something you use. Like, can you use it like in the cold tea?

Jodi Cohen: So basically, what you're doing is you're trying to alkalize your body because your body's alkalized, it doesn't really react to things. What I do, we have an immune support oil. My secret sauce for that. And I do it for myself, for my kids, like whenever you fill that tickle in your throat, I do an Epsom salt bath, two cups of Epsom salt, one cup of baking soda, and then a couple drops of lavender. Mix the oil into the salt before you add water so it doesn't float on top. Make it as hot as you can possibly stand it and stand for as long as you possibly can. 10 minutes minimum. So then you're sweating, right? You're sweating out the cold. And then I take our immune support oil and put it on the bottom of the feet and put socks on and crawl into bed. And every single time I've done it, I wake up feeling better.

Rita Black: Wow. Okay, cool.

Jodi Cohen: And apple (inaudible) vinegar is something, Paleo Valley has good supplements cause I don't like to drink. Well some people like to drink it. To me it doesn't taste great. But cause that's really alkalizing too.

Rita Black: Hmm. Now I know your OLS are proprietary so nobody else has them. What I mean what approach, like if somebody was going well no, wait, hold that. I'm gonna come back to that for a second. I had one more question about like oil and how I can, are you looking into, cause I know of Covid and everything, long covid like, have you noticed like any of the symptoms of long covid being eased by essential oils, like energy levels and everything? Cause I have three friends with long covid who are desperately fatigued all the time or

Jodi Cohen: It just regulates your autonomic nervous system and so the parasympathetic helps to reregulate it. And then I wrote a whole blog about smell retraining, how if you've lost your sense of smell, you basically, you know, hold the oil and kinda slowly you, it's like exposure therapy for your smell.

Rita Black: Mm. And you have a number of blogs on your website. If listeners wanted to go to your website, I'm gonna put your website in our shownotes. But so if they wanna go there and read up more specifically about how particular things help different remedy or different remedies for different things

Jodi Cohen: It can support the body returning to balance so the symptoms disappear.

Rita Black: Yeah. Okay. Love it. I will definitely look into that and ask you more about that for my friends. What would, so what would listeners look for in essential oil? Like what do you want like as a consumer to make sure you're getting the best product that something that's really gonna work for you?

Jodi Cohen: I always say organic, you know, honestly it's the concentrated essence of plants and plants are sprayed with pesticides. You're getting concentrated pesticides. So I would say organic or wildcrafted, you know, the resin that you get from the Franken for frankincense from the tree. Like they don't grow the trees organically but pick, you know, be in a place where it's wildcrafted and kind of natural so it's not covered in pesticides.

Rita Black: Okay. And is there any any other things like if somebody was just going to start to, to like want more information or get interested, should they just come to your website?

Jodi Cohen: Yeah, they absolutely can. I mean, I wrote a book that kind of details how I look at oils and you know, there's no right or wrong way, but I do have a free chapter that they can grab if they go to boostthebrainbook.com/gift and that will just give them more information on the parasympathetic nervous system cause it's you know, it actually is kind of light reading. I tried to make it fun, but it's, you know, it's slightly complicated. So if I breeze through it cause I talk too fast, they can get more information there.

Rita Black: Well, and I know you have a special deal to that I'm gonna put in the shownotes. So please tell me about that. Like if somebody wanted just a sample or try something just to see if this was something they were into but not have to invest a bunch of money. Like tell us about that.

Jodi Cohen: So we're giving your listeners $15 for the parasympathetic blend so they can just try it. They basically can just, you know, flip the bottle, put it behind their ears and it's great for so many things like, you know, digestion, it's not just what you eat, it's how you eat. Like, it's really your vagus nerve that turns on your whole digestive cascade. You know? That starts the saliva, the mouth releasing saliva to start breaking down the food, the stomach to release hydrochloric acid so you don't have acid reflux, the gallbladder to release enzymes so you can better digest your fat, the pancreas to release enzymes and then kind of the moving sidewalk that is your digestive system. So things don't sit too long, you know, and nothing ferments or acidifies or anything. And then also you know, making sure that you're eliminating it, that you're not constipated and keeping things in. So that's the biggest thing. It's not just, you know, what you eat, it's how you eat. So if we can make sure that you're digesting, absorbing and assimilating your nutrients, that's gonna help a lot.

Rita Black: Right. I love it. That's a great, that's a very reasonable price to just try something out and get in. That's any other because like I said, we have a weight management audience, any other ideas or thoughts about how oils can help with the weight mastery journey?

Jodi Cohen: So I grew up, my dad was a huge emotional eater, you know, and I think emotional eating is very valid there. When my dad was dying, I don't really eat sugar, I don't really eat cookies, but I never would crave cookies so badly is when I was leaving the hospital. Like, you know, all my emotions, all my cortisol all stirred up. So the parasympathetic blend can also help you kind of regulate your emotional response because it calms your ability to respond so you're not as reactive and you can, you know, like when you're craving that cookie leaving the hospital, if you kind of activate your parasympathetic nervous system, you can have this moment of discernment where you can say, I mean, I guess I could eat the cookie. Or, you know, maybe I could get a cup of coffee and it would be the same needing less calories or maybe, you know, I can go for walk. Like, it just gives you the ability to be discerning and have options so that you're better able to regulate your response.

Rita Black: Right. Like have that resilience in that moment. Yeah. So maybe, maybe put the essential oils in the cookie jar and instead of the cookies.

Jodi Cohen: Yeah. And I mean, like, let's be honest, everyone needs a cookie day. Like it's just gonna happen, but it just gives you that option of I can, you know, make, I won't regret it later if I'm more thoughtful about choosing it now.

Rita Black: Exactly. Okay. Well this has been so enlightening and so helpful. I have all these ideas floating in my head. I definitely am excited about trying out some different paths for it as far as and for my son too, especially with the sleep. So I'm excited. So thank you so much Jodi, for coming on and spending time with us. And I will put the links to what Jodi was talking about, the free chapter links to your book. I'll put links to everything in, and including that $15 special.

Rita Black: Thank you so much for coming on Thin Thinking today, Jodi. It was really great to meet you and to hear everything, all of your wisdom.

Rita Black: Thank you so much for having me.

Rita Black: Thank you, Jodi. Wasn't that fascinating? I just loved learning all of that. I'm going to go check that oil for insomnia right now. So you can go to the show notes and check out there. The link is in there for that free chapter in her book. As well as getting that parasympathetic oil. My tongue is now twisted. For $15 in the show notes, which is a really, really great deal. And there's also some links to some of her other products for you to explore. So and don't forget that review. Don't forget that review. Get that written and get your free hypnosis download and also get in that drawing for July 15th. So get on that and have an amazing week. And remember that the key and probably the only key to unlocking the door of the weight struggle is inside you. So keep listening and find it.

Rita Black: You wanna dive deeper into the mindset of long-term weight release, head on over to www.shiftweightmastery.com. That's www.shiftweightmastery.com, where you'll find numerous tools and resources to help you unlock your mind for permanent weight release tips, strategies, and more. And be sure to check the show notes to learn more about my book From Fat to Thin Thinking. Unlock Your Mind For Permanent Weight Loss.