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The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #142 - Dr. Eric Zielinski

ERIC ZIELINSKI, DC is the author of the national bestseller The Healing Power of Essential Oils. Dr. Z has pioneered natural living and biblical health education since 2003. Trained as an aromatherapist, public health researcher, and chiropractor, Dr. Z started NaturalLivingFamily.com in 2014 with his wife, Sabrina Ann, to help people learn how to safely and effectively use natural remedies such as essential oils. Now visited by more than five million natural health seekers every year, NaturalLivingFamily.com has rapidly become the number one online source for biblical health and non-branded essential oils education. 

Instagram: @drericz


2 - IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life: Join Melanie's Facebook Group For A Weekly Episode GIVEAWAY, And To Discuss And Learn About All Things Biohacking! All Conversations Welcome!

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15:55 - Dr. Eric's journey into Essential oils

24:00 - chronic Disease

27:55 - Essential oils as medicine

32:05 - what is an apothecary?

35:15 - women as healers in the home

42:10 - LMNT: For Fasting Or Low-Carb Diets Electrolytes Are Key For Relieving Hunger, Cramps, Headaches, Tiredness, And Dizziness. With No Sugar, Artificial Ingredients, Coloring, And Only 2 Grams Of Carbs Per Packet, Try LMNT For Complete And Total Hydration. For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/melanieavalon To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!

43:25  - What Do You Have To Learn?

46:15 - Every Day use

48:55 - the female audience

52:15 - what can essential oils do, and what role can they play in helping prevent chronic disease?

51:55 - COVID

56:15 - is the benefit of essential oils in the smell alone?

57:25 - sneezing, watery eyes, Diarrhea

1:01:55 - the Emotional benefits of essential oil

1:03:55 - bringing back smell and taste after COVID

1:05:55 - getting sick

1:11:25 - snacks

1:12:40 - tolerance and addiction to sweets and fats

1:18:45 - SUNLIGHTEN: Get Up To $200 Off AND $99 Shipping (Regularly $598) With The Code MelanieAvalon At MelanieAvalon.Com/Sunlighten. Forward Your Proof Of Purchase To Podcast@MelanieAvalon.com, To Receive A Signed Copy Of What When Wine!
The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #38 - Connie Zack
The Science Of Sauna: Heat Shock Proteins, Heart Health, Chronic Pain, Detox, Weight Loss, Immunity, Traditional Vs. Infrared, And More!

1:20:55 - CBD

1:32:40 - metabolic health and weight loss

1:35:25 - adaptogens

1:38:55 - fat burning roll on

1:42:15 - lime oil

1:46:55 - Reducing toxic burden

1:47:25 - fasting of all types

1:53:55 - building your own haven

The Essential Oils Apothecary: Advanced Strategies and Protocols for Chronic Disease and Conditions


Melanie Avalon: Hi, friends, welcome back to the show. I am so incredibly excited about the conversation that I am about to have. Backstory on today's episode, I was looking-- I've had this guest on the show before and it was one of my very first episodes of this show. It was way back in January 2020, which means I recorded it maybe even before this show came out. The initial conversation was because I had known I wanted to do an episode on essential oils and my favorite book on essential oils, hands down The Healing Power of Essential Oils. I had reached out to the author, Dr. Eric Zielinski and invited him onto the show and he was so gracious, and so wonderful, so kind, and that episode was just amazing. My listeners loved it. Then, I was thrilled more recently when the Zielinskis, he and his wife, Sabrina released a second book, it is called The Essential Oils Apothecary. What's really funny listeners is, he sent me some copies of the book, which was so kind. One for myself and then, also, because I wanted to do a giveaway for the audience. I realized on the return address that he lives right by me, which I had not realized. Since then, we've actually had dinner with Eric, and his wife, and my sister, and their new son, and that was absolutely amazing. I've been really, really looking forward to this episode. It's so wonderful too, because normally I haven't met in person the guests that I have on the show, so I feel this adds just a whole another dynamic to it. I can just say from the bottom of my heart that the Zielinskis are some of the coolest people and most amazing, beautiful souls I've ever met. Thank you so much for coming back. I'm so excited. Your new book is amazing. Can't wait to dive in. Thank you for being here.

Eric Zielinski: Well, we love you. This is fun virtual hug and especially, in these crazy times, it's been so important for us to be intentional about getting together with people, especially, likeminded people in a safe way. No one's being reckless, no one's being crazy. We had a chance to go out to eat at our favorite restaurant, a healthy restaurant, and we just celebrate life. Melanie, what I love about you and meeting your sister was so sweet as well. Yeah, folks, it's a lonely thing doing what we do and maybe, I'll speak for Melanie, but for me, it's a lonely job. It's a lonely business model when you're just talking in front of a computer and you don't have that personal interaction. One of the worst things that came out of this COVID experience was this just essentially lie from the pit of hell that we need to socially distance. Let me be careful before, the FDA shuts us down here. If you want to physically distance yourself, because of a threat of any contaminant? Well, okay, you could physically distance yourself, but don't socially distance yourself. I hope you're picking up what I'm dropping here everyone, because this mindset that we don't need to socialize, this mindset that I need to isolate, this mindset that I need to "quarantine myself" from society has caused an unbelievable amount of mental health concerns and that has led into more rates of obesity, cancer, diabetes, heart disease. 

How wonderful it was and I was like telling Sabrina, "We just got to get together with this girl. She's sweet, she's local," and we just want to be more intentional about socializing. I'll tell you, it's been a wonderful journey because of it and we've met people that we maybe would never met before. That's why I just want to encourage everyone listening right now, whether it's through Zoom, whether it's phone calls, whether it's your yelling across the street just to talk to your neighbor. I'll never forget early on in the pandemic, because Italy got hammered. I'll never forget early on in the pandemic, this beautiful picture of these old Italian women yelling across the street in their apartments, five storeys up and they would refuse to social distance. Now, they're physically distancing, but they weren't social distancing, anyway. You know what is funny, Melanie, when I say this, invariably no joke and that'll take credit for this and maybe you've interviewed him or should. Dr. Brian Mowll, he's the diabetes coach, functional medicine doctor, who practices really how to help people balance their blood sugar naturally. He's the one who turned me on to this idea really early on in the pandemic and he goes, "Eric, there's something wrong with this social distancing thing. Yeah, you can physically get distance, but don't social distance." I'm like, "Oh, Brian, that's brilliant." Every time I say it to people like friends, my pastor, my neighbor, their eyes wide open and they're like, "Wow, you're right. Light bulb." I just hope there's a little light bulb going on people right now. If there's Melanie nearby your house, and you invite her out to dinner, and you do things safe, and you enjoy your life.

Melanie Avalon: I cannot agree more and I was already concerned about this pre-pandemic just with how people are becoming with social media more disconnected and all of that. And then, the pandemic on top of that just made it thousand million times worse. Then, even things like not even just the distancing, but things with the masks, children not seeing human faces as much as they would be growing up. I think that's going to have massive, detrimental effects potentially on the future psyche of the next generation. Thank you for what you're doing. Yes, people stay social in a safe way for sure, because so normally, when I bring back a guest, I refer listeners to the previous conversation to get caught up. But honestly, it's been so long, I feel we can just really start a fresh with this to start things off essential oils, your personal story, what made you so into them? Was it an epiphany? I know the answer, but for listeners who are not familiar, what was your journey with that, why are you doing this today what you're doing?

Eric Zielinski: There's so many little pieces to it in my own healing story. I became a Christian in 2003 and I had "I was blind and now I see moment" and I was living a really, really unhealthy life. I was addicted to alcohol, cigarettes, I was abusing narcotics, I was clinically depressed, I was contemplating killing myself. So, that's called suicide ideation. I had just uncontrollable gut concerns, cystic acne. It was a really, really dark season and a dark place that I was in. When I was 22 years old, I went to multiple different doctors, and naturopaths, and Chinese healers, and really no one can help me. And ultimately, what was wrong was, I just had a void in my spirit, and I had no purpose in life, and I didn't know what to do, and it's went through the motions. I just went through the motions. There's something about me and there is something about me. I'm an all or nothing kind of guy. People like me don't have a reason to live that brings value to other people. It eats your soul. I can understand why so many people fall into the habits that they do, whether it's opioid addiction, or narcotics, or alcoholism, abuse, I get it. I understand how this happens. Because when there's a hole in your soul that questions your utter existence, then, what do you do, but you try to fill it with whatever you can. For me, it was all the unhealthy things, because I had no idea what was healthy quite frankly. Again, that was me at my proverbial rock bottom. When I had my proverbial coming to Jesus moment, which was actually a literal coming to Jesus moment--

Melanie Avalon: I was going to say literal.

Eric Zielinski: Yeah. It was like boom. I'll tell you. I'm 42 years old now and it's been 19 years. In a matter of a millisecond, it was poof. Depression went away, suicide thoughts went away. Anxiety, panic attacks went away. The utter emptiness of my life was filled with love, and it was filled with purpose, and it was filled with joy. Now, the cool thing is not at the time, I thought it was frustrating. My gut didn't heal, my back didn't heal, I still had pains, I still had issues, but again addiction, I was free from addiction. I was given a clean slate emotionally and mentally, but physically, I was still in my little prison. That was a gift. I believe that was a gift from God to me to figure out what was wrong with me to change my life. Because ultimately, imagine your best friend, your mother, your father coming to you literally with a cigarette in their mouth saying, "I just got diagnosed with lung cancer. Help me." What are you going to do? You're going to smack that cigarette out of their mouth, right? I hope. We get that, I think. We get that idea. Okay, cigarettes cause cancer, don't smoke. If you have cancer, well, it's the first thing you do. Well, I got the big idea quickly. Well, my food choices were causing these issues. What I was drinking was causing these issues, and what I was wearing, and my body care, and these things that were unhealing. I just had this unbelievable awakening to the toxicity overload and it wasn't a download from God. It was my mentor who taught me a lot of it. His name is Enoch, and he's 78 years old, and he still was just bench pressing 270 pounds couple of months ago. One of the strongest healthiest people I know, who's taught me, "Eric your body's a temple of voice of spirit. You have to take care of it. You have to just take care of yourself. It's part of your spiritual act of worship, but it's also part of your life. You just can't eat McDonald's, and smoke cigarettes, and expect to enjoy a good life."

That started my journey. Why I'm mentioning that, because essential oils weren't part of it, because at the core of where I was 20 years ago, essential oils really weren't out as they are today and I had the focus on the big rocks. I had to put the pillars in place for my foundation. And essential oils, I'll be honest with everyone, come on, let's be real. They're not like a pillar to your health. Nutrition is, water is what the things that you do every day are the pillars of your life. Essential oils are a great adjunct. Now, I've included them as part of my pillars, but you can't make a pillar on your life as essential oils. Maybe I'm talking to someone out there who's trying something, one thing. If you're using essential oils, and don't change your lifestyle, and you're expecting healing, it's taking one step forward, but three steps back. "Okay, I'm doing the intermittent fasting, but then, again, when I'm not, I have eaten low fast food all the time." Well, that's not going to help you. Or, "I do this. I take my supplements, but I do this on the other side." You have to focus on. 

Anyway, fast forward, I guess, I point that out, because this journey created a health fanatic out of me, like a health nut, you could call it and I love it. To the point where when my wife and I early on in our marriage, we just to go hang out, and we would go on trips together, and part of our trips was just to hang on at the local health food store just to see the cool stuff that they got. We're those people, we're the hippie, granola, yuppie people in the suburbs. That's how we live. Why essential oils? Well, because I needed them. I didn't have a medicine cabinet. Nutrition, you're not going to eat an apple. You can't take a supplement and get an immediate, immediate interaction with your body to produce a physiological response to stop migraine or headache, or to stop an infection. I'm careful with that, because I know a lot of people love their supplements, and a lot of people love their food, and all that's good. But the thing of difference is they're not at a medicinal like an actual pharmaceutical grade dose. I would try the supplements, I would try the food, I would try different exercises, mind-body techniques like athlete's foot and it didn't cure it. Then, I need something. I don't want to go to Fast Actin Tinactin. What can I put on topically that will kill this stuff? Well, that's called tea tree essential oil. What about this thing? Well, that's called oregano. What about this? 

Essential oils essentially filled up my medicine cabinet. It literally, they are my medicine cabinet. That's what I was missing. Throughout about 10 years of just living this life, I was like, "Man, I'll get a toothache, or a headache, or a nausea." Yeah, we'll do all those things to help, but because of their concentrated nature and people like, "Why are they so special?" Well, essential oils are concentrated plant matter. When you pick up a little bottle of lavender, you're literally holding three pounds of lavender flowers. That's hard to conceptualize just because one itty-bitty blossom weighs lighter than air. I've heard various reports and no one knows exactly the concentration level compared to like, let's say, an herb, or a pill, a supplement. But cinnamon, I understand, it takes about one drop of cinnamon bark essential oil to have the same effect on balancing your blood sugar increasing insulin sensitivity to be synonymous to two teaspoons or a tablespoon of cinnamon bark powder. Just compare that. A tablespoon of powder or a drop of an oil. That's the comparison here. That's what I'm presenting to you. This last book is all about chronic disease. Because I think people need to understand that there are-- 

Oh, this, I know people understand. There are unbelievably potent plant-based compounds out there that can help your body heal. I don't sell essential oils. I'm not going to invite you into my multilevel marketing company. I invite you to find someone that you love to help you with that, because that's awesome. I am a researcher, I'm a guy whose life was changed by health, by natural living strategies, by essential oils. You saw and you know my wife. My wife made you even her own little "Thank you, we love you Christmas goodie bag kit." That's what she does. All those little homemade products and all those things. That's how we live her life. One by one by one, we've learned how to detox our life from all the dangerous chemicals that are in our body care and cleaning products. That's all great. That's what my wife's been doing for years. But what's really important is when crap hits the fan, and quite frankly right now, I don't want to go to the hospital for anything. Unless, I'm on death's door bed, I'm not going to the hospital right now. That means I get to take care of myself. We need to be better stewards of our health. And for simple sprains, and cuts, and scrapes, and the things that many, many people go to the hospital for an ER for, why would we want to burden the system and why would we want to put ourselves in that risk of getting sick? 

I just had a friend of ours who just went to the hospital for something completely unrelated. They came home with COVID. I don't want that. When you start realizing, when I start realizing that we have the power of our health in our hands, you know how cool superglue is. If you have a little cut that looks deep enough where you could get a stitch, I'll tell you something. Nine times out of 10, you could superglue that puppy and people don't realize. What you just did was you just saved $1,000 plus urgent care, you saved yourself all the hassle, and all the stress, and that kind of little stuff. That's where essential oils have really come front and center in my world, and in my family's world, and in the people that follow us. Because we're at a point right now, where this movement of people and you're included, we want to be more self-sustaining, Melanie, we don't want to be reliant on the system, we don't want to be a burden on the system, and we want to do things that will essentially help our bodies heal. Essential oils, I have found through just a wonderful journey of these last, essentially, decade of playing with them, and experimenting, and researching, and writing, and speaking about them is they play an absolute pivotal role that nothing on the planet can play, because of their concentrated nature. That's what I'll leave people with. Don't look at essential oils. And this is fun. I love the aromatherapy fun stuff. The loofahs and the bath salts and I love that stuff. I do really. I enjoy that. It produces just a wonderful peace and calm, and it's a wonderful adjunct to my house. We like the house smelling nice. I like smelling good without having toxic cologne. But when it comes down to it, it's our medicine and that's what I want to leave people with today.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so glad that you framed it from the beginning with the delicate nuance of both wanting to use essential oils to help treat chronic health conditions, but then, also, realizing that they're not the foundation. They're these tools and techniques that you bring in, because I think especially in the biohacking world, people can fall down the rabbit hole and think that the solution is in these external things rather than first addressing the foundational pillars. That was a really great perspective to bring to it. Something I love about your book is, first of all, the title. The Essential Oils Apothecary. What is actually an apothecary and the history of essential oils. It's just so, so interesting, and the evolution of how they were originally used more as medicine, but then, became less popular. Like you just said, when you wrote the first book, their popularity was not quite back yet like it is today. What is an apothecary actually and how do essential oils actually, literally compared to medicine, pharmaceuticals?

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, it is synonymous. They are synonymous. That is the purpose of the book and there are, what, 50 pages of references and citations to medical journals to prove it. That's my big claim. Essential oils are synonymous to medicine. The two differences, number one, they're completely nontoxic and there are zero side effects. If you use them properly, now, beside the rare case and this is really important. The rare case of allergic reaction which can happen and drug interaction, which is now more of an issue than ever before. Because so many people are walking around like chemical soup. There're so many drugs that people are taking. That's why my book, I have this exhaustive list. It's the only thing-- By the way, this was my big frustration with what's out there in the internet. It's why I do my books, because it's filling a void. You can't find anywhere online about any sort of, "I take this drug, I need to worry about this oil." It just doesn't exist. We put that together and I'll say, I didn't do it all alone and I had great support with this book. A wonderful research writer helping me, certified aromatic practitioner, cosmetic formulator, this woman specifically is a brilliant genius. She helped go through the metabolic pathways of the body and found out like, "Look, these essential oils can actually inhibit certain enzymes, which would cause drug interactions." That's the important thing. They are drug level, they have drug pharmaceutical level therapeutic efficacy, all right? 

The research suggests that oftentimes on par with your favorite pharmaceutical. With that said, truth be told. There's no essential oil that can have the potency of Vicodin. That's where essential oils are limited in their scope. But let me suggest that's not a bad thing and let me suggest that maybe Vicodin is a little too much. And that's where maybe these pharmaceutical cocktails that people take, take it to another level. Essential oils, I would argue is the medicine that God wanted us and designed us to use, because it's very potent and it works properly in its timing. But sometimes it takes a day, or two, or three days to resolve an issue. My first book, a wonderful, wonderful Nurse Practitioner, she has a wonderful book, Clinical Aromatherapy book and she has a recipe that will knock out a vaginal infection in three days. She did the research, she's gone through the patient load, she did all the different things, and it's just wonderful like tea tree and lavender recipe that we converted into a tampon for people. And it's super safe, it's super effective. Ladies, if you have a vaginal infection issue, if you have yeast infections, give yourself two three days and this thing will work. 

Now, I'm not promising five hours. You notice I'm not promising 12 hours. See, that's the thing about pharmaceuticals and that's the thing about the medical industry that's really catered to people is, like, this is it, Fast Actin Tinactin, right? Going back to that. It's quick. So, that's it. Bottom line, essential oils are on par with pharmaceuticals. But what's an apothecary? That's fun. I wish I could take credit for the title. That's my publisher, my editor came up with that title and I give her all the credit for that. In apothecary, I had to look it up. I didn't know what it was when she said, "What about the essential apothecary?" Let's go back in the 19th century, 1800s. If you had a cough, tummy ache, some sort of ailment, your mother, maybe your grandmother chances are we'll go to apothecary, who would mix up-- he was a person, who would mix up an herbal concoction of some [unintelligible [00:22:49] maybe, some essential oils, maybe some roots, and herbs, and whatever, and they would just put it together, and hopefully, it worked. Apothecary is and was a medical professional, who prepares and sells medicine. That's really what it was. This person, oftentimes a woman and depending on the culture man, would represent the healer of the community to understand. They understood the power of nature to heal. In fact, Benjamin Franklin was known to be an apothecary. As a profession that goes back to 2600 BC and we're talking ancient Babylonians, and we're talking clay tablets that show all these fun things about medical techs, and recording symptoms, and prescriptions, and all that stuff. 

We took that name and we're like, "Look, you can be the apothecary of today. You can do this and you don't need a 300-hour, $5,000 certification level program to do it." We want to help people get back to that place, where I will stay in my zone as an educator, I'll just talk about essential oils. I'm known as the expert in this space. Learn from me about essential oils, but you know what, go to someone else to learn about herbs, and go to someone else to learn about tinctures, and go to someone else to learn about all this. That's exactly what my wife has done over the years. We've gone to various different people to learn from the experts how to do these things. We've essentially and I'll say, Melanie, I'm sure you got this from Sabrina. Meeting her, my wife is the apothecary. She is the definition, she embodies it. It's literally every day, every day. She's on Facebook communing with people via chat, text message, friends, when you have 5 million followers online and I say, "Sabrina, we can't do this. [laughs] We can't answer all these questions." "Well, these people need help, and this and this, and that and that, and all the friends." No joke, Melanie. If you and your sister have a problem, you contact Sabrina. She'll put up something together quick and you'll get better. Chances are really quick. To see my wife fulfill that role and maybe I could speak in a non-politically correct way in a minute that will quote a woman, so I don't get lambasted. Have you ever had Joette Calabrese on your podcast? 

Melanie Avalon: I haven't. 

Eric Zielinski: Oh, you got to get her. This Joette Calabrese reminds me of my grandma, because she's old enough to be my grandma and she's Sicilian and I'm Sicilian. She reminds me a lot like my grandma. But that's the grandma I wish I had, because my grandma was not this way. But Joette is this spitfire. She's just like 100% energy like me times five and she's a homeopathic physician. She does homeopathy. She never took her kids to the doctor ever. I still let that sink in. Imagine, ever. Three kids, ever. Why? She says, "That's my role. I'm the healer of the home. I'm taking care of my babies." She's not crazy. She's a world-renowned health expert. She's part of the Weston A. Price Foundation Board, all that stuff. Joette, it's no joke. I interviewed Joette for my very, very first health summit, Essential Oil Revolution back in 2015. She said something that shocked me. I was like, I could never say it. Right now, it's the almost politically incorrect thing you could say and I will quote her, because I could never say this to people. They would shut me down, cancel me. She says that the reason we are in the situation that we're in is because women gave the power over health and healing to doctors. Mothers did not and do not take care of their family in the way that they were designed, trained, and have essentially evolved to do over the years. She goes, "When mothers went to the doctors instead of taking care of their kids themselves, that's when all this started." 

I started thinking about it from a historical perspective and then, going back to the apothecary, and then, looking at my wife rising up to be the apothecary, I was like, "Wow, what if that's correct?" What's Joette doing? Joette, all you know is what does, she has home courses. She teaches moms how to practice homeopathy to literally heal and treat virtually every condition through homeopathic medicine. That's her mission. She has a massive following of moms, especially homeschool moms, homebirth moms, and people in that vein, they get this. They get this. That's why we're blessed to deliver our babies at home. It's something that we have found is so empowering, being-- Again, going back to the superglue experience or going back-- liquid band-aids, I mean, man, one stitch, two stitch, that's a waste of time and money. Liquid band-aids will do that most times. If you have a gaping wound, if you need eight, nine, 10 stitches, okay, that's where you need to go to the doctor or, best guess, what we're learning how to suture. That's where we're taking to another level. We have a friend, who's a veterinarian.

Melanie Avalon: You guys are? You're learning?

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, we have to. I have five kids. Every day someone's coming to me. Boo boos. See, why not? Why not? Why don't we learn? Just get a sterile kit-- You know what's crazy? I had a guy yesterday in my backyard out of the blue. I just see this dude in my backyard. He had a vest on, and a badge, and he had, whatever, a board of some sort, a writing board, a tablet. I was like, "Why is this guy in my backyard?" He was rough around the edges. I'll just call it for what it is. I'm like, "Why is someone in my backyard?" I went outside like, "Hello, can I help you?" He was a tax assessor guy. Basically, he goes, "Hey, I knocked on your front door and no one was there. I'm here for the county to make sure everything's right for your taxes." A, they're not supposed to go in your backyard. I don't think and B, we ended up started talking. I instead of yelling at him, instead of like, "Whatever." I started talking to him and ended up, you know what? This dude is pretty cool dude. We talked for half an hour. He told me he literally delivered his last baby and he was the midwife. He was a doula. He said, "I watched every YouTube video I could." 

Again, this guy was rough around the edges. You would have never thought that he would have been this way. But him and his wife at the time decided they wanted to do this and he goes, "You know what, every time I say this to people, people look at me that I'm crazy." I'm like, "Dude, we're homework people." He started telling me like, he's the one who got the sterile equipment. He goes, "Yeah, I got all the sterile equipment, I got all the stuff, everything." He goes, "I had my birth kit, I delivered the baby, I cut the cord, I clamped it, I took care of everything." If some dude, who's some-- No joke. All he does all day. If he's not college, I'm assuming he's not highly college educated guy. I'm assuming he's for sure not a doctor, healthcare professional. If some guy could learn how to deliver a baby on YouTube and buy the medical equipment that he did, that was all sterile to take care of him, and his child, and his wife, how crazy is to think that we could stitch up a little boo-boo instead of going to the hospital for stuff like that. Whoa. Yes. And in the words of Joette Calabrese that right there puts the power back in our hand. I don't know. I would say, I think men need to support their wives more. Husbands and significant others, I think that's a big issue. I think there's a lot of conflict in the family. But according, I got to say seeing mama bear, seeing my wife rise up to be the healer. I'll never this poor kid, I don't know who he was. Because we have a big neighborhood, there're 1,500 homes that that live in our community, so, I don't know everybody, unfortunately. But there's this poor kid just doing whatever he was doing. I forget what he was skateboarding or one of those stupid automatic, what are they called? zoom boards? They're just ridiculous. You know what I'm talking about? The things that automatically go by battery, they stand on these. Yeah. What are those called? A hoverboard.

Melanie Avalon: I know what you're talking about. I see them. 

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, hoverboard. They're so dangerous. This kid's on and he just bails right in my front yard. Just bails and he's like, "Ooh." I could just tell him. He's an older kid, young teenager and I said, "Hey, buddy, you all right?" His knee was just bloody and scraped up. I'm like, "Oh, you don't look too good." I'm like, "Let me help you." I go in, "Go, Sabrina got a patient for you." No joke. She with her little first aid kit bad, bandage the kit up, sent them on a stupid hoverboard, and hopefully, he didn't fall again. Imagine that lifestyle, where you feel confident, whatever it is that comes your way you know. That's where my wife has really risen up to the task. She's the apothecary of today and we want to help others enjoy that empowerment, because it truly is one of the most empowering, inspiring thing to know that you can take care of your family when it's important. 

Melanie Avalon: That sense of agency is so incredible and so needed for all of us. For those listening, especially, for moms, who may be listening and have not taken this step into really being the apothecary for their family, if they get The Essential Oils Apothecary will that cover most of the types of issues that they could address with essential oils? It might just seem overwhelming for moms, the first step to take. What all do they need to learn?

Eric Zielinski: Oh, that's good. Actually, that's our next book, because the first book, The Healing Power of Essential Oils is an overview. It teaches you how to make your own body care, and cleaning products, and how to use essential oils on a daily basis. Let me preface one thing. We're blessed. I will say we're very blessed. I know I'm young. But it's sad to say to see my friends or the people I went to high school with and see how they're aging right now compared to me. Some have passed away because of cancer and other conditions. Some already are diabetic, pre-diabetic, many of which are overweight, obese, some have heart conditions at 41, 42 years old. This is becoming the new state of the adults and parents in our nation and around the world. I'm very blessed to say that we're completely healthy, disease free. Yeah, we have our issues at times. We use essential oils, because we want to. I think that's a big, big difference. Do you need to take a supplement or do you want to? Do you need to do this or do you want to? Imagine a life, where you use-- Same thing with biohacking. Do you need to do cryotherapy or do you want to? I think that's important, because-- [crosstalk] 

Melanie Avalon: I think it's so important. 

Eric Zielinski: Get to a place, where you enjoy these things, because you want it, not because you need it. Heaven forbid something happens, like no joke, if you get COVID, you need to know what to do. You need to have your own little protocol. You need to figure out. For us, it's infrared sauna, that's detoxing, that's a lot of different aromatherapy strategies, that's super strict nutrition, whatever. There're several things. Nebulizing, all kinds of different stuff. Don't get me wrong. We love the biohacking stuff, too. It's fun. It was funner, I know it's not it's not a word, don’t criticize me, right? It's funner is when you do it, because you want to. That's what essential oils is. We incorporate essential oils every day in our body care, in our lotions, in our potions, in our hand soap. If you and your sister were to come over, I think Sabrina actually just invited you over sometime soon. If you and your sister come over, you'll see our home everything's converted. Not everything, most things are converted into non-toxic, no phthalates, parabens, chemicals, no aromatic compounds that are potentially dangerous for you that are synthetic fragrances. That's how we enjoy your life. You're not going to see a Glade Plugin or Bath & Body Works products in our home. It doesn't exist. You're also not going to see white sugar in our house. You're not going to see pasteurized, homogenized, non-organic, GMO stuff, milk at our home, either. Just point out the big-- Cheerios, you're not going to see that here. It's just been a way of life. 

We enjoy essential oils daily. I'm telling you, the reason why this is important is because this helps live this super, super inflammatory busting lifestyle that it's consistent, it's steady, it's soothing to the body at a micro level. What we don't get, oftentimes, and that's one of my last books so much about chronic disease, is this stuff takes years to develop? You're not going to wake up tomorrow with cancer if you don't have cancer today. That's impossible. That's impossible. You might wake up tomorrow and get diagnosed with cancer not knowing you have cancer. But cancer will not develop in one day to a point where then you're going to see this huge lump. It doesn't work like that. Same thing with diabetes. You will not be in a healthy weight category today and tomorrow be obese. Well, obviously, right? Well, same thing with Alzheimer's, dementia, heart disease. Same thing with epilepsy, and seizures, and Parkinson's, and all the other chronic conditions that plague humanity. Depression, anxiety. Now, yes, there is PTSD in that. But that also takes years and years, oftentimes, if not months to develop. Substance abuse, you're not just going to wake up tomorrow an addict, it takes time. 

We talk about all that stuff in the last book, because we want people to realize, it took time to get into this trouble. It is going to take time to get out. But when you incorporate what we like to call this essential oils lifestyle, what you're doing daily are little things to help your body soothe inflammation and heal, soothe inflammation and heal. Stop the onslaught of toxins and put your body in a position where if it is exposed to something that could harm it, the immune system can do what it's designed to do. That was really the purpose of the first book is like, look, Essential Oils 101. We also had a nice little section for women, because I recognized is I'm sure as a case for this podcast, most people listening and your viewers are women, which is sad, I think because in the natural health like biohacking world, men haven't gotten it yet and it's pretty consistent across the board. I think 80% to 85% of our followers, and readers, and this is again, I've talked to some of the most well-known health experts in the world, and their websites is the same thing. I think what's good about that is that it also reminds me what Joette said, "Women are the healer of the home" and I'm glad that that women are rising up and I also want men to step up to. I recognize that there's a lot of women, who are going to read my book. So, I created this women's health section to help with a lot of the PMS issues, cramping, menopause stuff, and labor, and all the little things, I guess, little not labor, but all the little things. 

When it comes to the day-to-day stuff, that's our next book. That's a lot of work and that's a lot of my wife, because this next book that we're preparing with our publisher is actually preparing it now is going to be essentially, the Mama Z brain dump on the world. What do you do for gout, what do you do for this stuff, what do you do for fever, and what do you do for a lot of the kids' issues, and the home issues, and your first aid kit, your medicine cabinet, your athlete's foot, all that little stuff? Well, the reason why we wrote this last book, The Essential Oils Apothecary was to me, it was the natural progression of okay, we've learned the basics of essential oils together and it was really a blessing, because it's my first book it's available in I think nine different languages nearly. At this point, 150 plus thousand copies have been sold. It was a blessing to see it in so many different hands. One question I kept on getting, a consistent question was, "What do I do for this?" This, you can put that in brackets. What's [this] for people? What do I do for cancer, what do I do for stroke, what do I do for Alzheimer's, dementia? Typically, we had some smaller things, but it was always like the big stuff. People want to be cured and healed of their life-threatening chronic disease. I get it, I would, too. That is what we tackled is "Okay, let's look at how essential oils can realistically--? 

There're no crazy claims. I'm not saying putting a drop of frankincense on your head is going to cure you of cancer. We don't do that stuff. But what can essential oils do and what role can they play in helping you prevent and/or treat, maybe reverse chronic conditions that are literally killing us? It was interesting, because when we wrote this book, we're in quarantine. There's a lot of nuances to COVID in this book that it opens up your eyes when at the early onset of COVID, people had no real idea why certain people were getting sick and why certain people were dying. But as data developed, the resounding consensus was essentially people that are vulnerable are the ones that have chronic conditions. 99.8% or whatever it was at one point of all deaths were people with diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and all that stuff. Of course, the elderly who are vulnerable, because they're at that age where they have a, or two, or three chronic condition. That was the whole context to the discussion. It was like, maybe, and I still think this today, now, two years out of COVID. What if imagine a world two years ago where people didn't have chronic disease? Imagine a world that wasn't 50% obese. Imagine a world where one out of two, one out of three men and women didn't have cancer. Imagine a world where chronic disease was the minority, not the majority. 

I think it's fair to say that COVID would have just been a little blip. It wouldn't have devastated humanity like it did. The reason it was devastating was because COVID preys on those that are vulnerable, and who are vulnerable those with dampened immune systems, because they have chronic disease. Chronic disease is essentially the killer of mankind in our day and age. If you look at the top causes of death, diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer's, heart disease, stroke, cancer, that's chronic disease, everyone. Out of all the different causes of death, there's very few in the world. You got tuberculosis and you got falls, like accidents and stuff. You have potential infection that we don't deal with necessarily in America like we used to, but falls and accidents. Other than that, that list is top. Kidney failure, kidney disease, liver disease, that's chronic stuff. There's one thing we all could do. Imagine creating a lifestyle that is chronic disease proof or at the very least puts you in a position where you're going to be like my friend Enoch, my mentor who's 78 years old with zero health conditions on zero medications, still bench pressing 250 plus pounds, and has more energy than anyone I know my age or younger. I look at him I'm like, "He's not an anomaly. He's just a normal guy." But he is absolutely diligent and committed to this lifestyle that he's lived now 50 some years. It's like Jack Lalanne. Remember, Jack Lalanne? Boy, why are there more Jack Lalannes out there? Why no one? I've been blessed and I'm very fortunate to have him as my mentor. To pass along Enoch's legacy so to speak, but we can be like Jack Lalanne, we can be like Paul Bragg. Maybe people have heard of Bragg's apple cider vinegar. Well, who do you think Bragg is? Look up Paul Bragg. He was actually Jack Lalanne's mentor. He's the one who opened the first health food store in America. So, Paul Bragg, down to Jack Lalanne, down to Enoch, down to me, down and who's next, right? Let's spread that net.

Melanie Avalon: I've been thinking about it a lot recently, because you were talking right before this. I got COVID week before last and it's interesting, because people keep asking me like, "What are you doing to support it or fight it?" Honestly, most of what I was already doing, the lifestyle that I was engaging with in general was to support an anti-inflammatory state, and healing, and stuff like that. But of course, they can take more acute measures and I was looking through your book, I was like, "Oh, this is so perfect," because you have sections on infection, and inflammation, and things like that. But it does bring me to a huge question I have about essential oils in general. Maybe, you could talk a little bit about the actual compounds in essential oils. Are the healing potential of oils, are they all what we actually smell and what is the importance of that? The reason I'm asking is I've lost my taste and smell. So, I'm wondering, would I still get the benefits of essential oils if I can't actually smell them?

Eric Zielinski: That's a great question. Yes and no. You will get the physiological benefits, because when you smell anything that produces a neurological cascade from your olfactory system to your brain that stimulates one output or another. There're an infinite amount of outputs throughout your body. You smell, that's why-- What's the best example? You go down the cleaning aisle at the store, the big box store. You smell that cornucopia of just poison.

Melanie Avalon: I do not like that aisle.

Eric Zielinski: No, I can't do it. I can't do it. I literally have to hold my breath to walk by the aisle. It's miserable. Why I'm mentioning that is, those are volatile organic compounds that are being emitted from the packaging and it is tangible. It is palatable. You could taste it, you could feel it almost. It's horrible. Some people, you go there, your eyes will start running. Why because? There're compounds, there're chemicals that are interacting with your eyes, and your eyes are like, "Well, water, water cleanse, clean." That's why you think your eyes water when you get pollen in your eyes trying to wash it out. It's not a bad thing. It's a good thing. Why do you think you sneeze? You're going there, what happens? You start to sneeze, your nose starts to run. Why? Because the body sees it as an allergen, it's trying to cleanse it out. Get out of here. Think about what we oftentimes try to inhibit. Oh, it's hard. That's again, what Joette teaches. Joette teaches, let your fever run. Fever is a good thing. Fever kills bacteria, viruses, fungi. There's a point where 105 temperature, okay, that could be deadly. But most people low-grade fever, let your kids have a fever. This anti-fever stuff, this antihistamine stuff, we want to be in comfort all the time. But there is a point where we need to let these symptoms run, because this is our body's immune system. 

Now, I get it. It's hard. If you have to work, if you need to do something, if you need a decongestant, okay, find a natural version of it. But what's happening when you're going into that aisle is, there's so much toxicity the body immediately starts to interact. That is the quick impact. Some people get nausea, some people get headaches, oftentimes, headaches is a big thing with that. Again, your nose starts to run, because the drainage of the body, the nasal mucosa is like, "Get this stuff out of here." Purge, just like diarrhea. That's actually a good thing. It's your body purging out something that's hurting or potentially a threat. Now, you don't want to have diarrhea for 10 weeks, 10 years, whatever. There's this balancing, there's this little immune system that we need to embrace, I think instead of suppressing. That's essentially, how quickly essential oils can have the exact opposite impact, because when you're inhaling something, your body will stimulate something like a parasympathetic response, rest and digest, healing, mood boosting, digestion support, immune function, there's unlimited amount of outputs just by inhaling the essential oils. 

But to your point. If you can't smell, you can't discern what that is. You don't know if it's lavender, or orange, or eucalyptus. Your body won't get the emotional benefit of, "Oh, that reminds me of this or oh, that." See, when you inhale something, the particles are interacting with your nerve cells in your nose. Unlike any other sensory input on the body, your nose, your olfactory system has a direct line of communication to your brain with no sensory input, with no interpretation. There's something called the thalamic relays, the thalamus is part of the brain. When you stub your foot, or stub your toe on a wall, or you accidentally cut your finger, think back to the last time you hurt yourself. You remember that split second between hurting yourself and feeling aww?

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. I think about it every time that happens. Yeah.

Eric Zielinski: That split second, that is because the sensory input has to be interpreted by the thalamus, the brain to say, "Ooh, this is not good. This is what we need to do now." That's why when you put your hand into a fire, the sensory input says, "This is really hot. It's going to burn our hand. Get your hand out." You have this autonomic reflex that moves your hand. It's a knee jerk response kind of thing. It's a safety mechanism to protect your hand from burning off. There is the moment though, there's that split second-- There is no interpretation of smell. It's the only sensory input. Why? Because it's the primal sense. It's the first sense we all developed. It's the sense from an evolutionary perspective, it connects us to the primates. It is what makes us a mammal, essentially. And it's what puts us in a position, where our primal mood, our emotions, our memory is housed. It's the first thing that really develops in the neurological system from a sensory perspective. Your autonomic function is managed. When you smell something, boom, automatic. 

That's important, because what that does, it does a number of different things. It could produce rapid heart rate, it could produce blood pressure issues, or it could calm your blood pressure, it could produce euphoria, it could produce PTSD, it could produce a number of different cascades. That's why when you walk into someone's home during Thanksgiving, for example, you might smell that turkey, and we remember grandma, and be like, "Oh, I love grandma. That's so nice. I'm happy here." That is the emotional benefit of aromatherapy. You're not going to get that if you can't smell turkey. But the volatile organic compounds that are being stimulated from the turkey, if there are any that bring healing to you which I don't know, I haven't studied turkey essential oil. But you know what I mean? It doesn't exist. You can't buy it, you can't sell it. But that benefit will be there on a physiological level. I think that's really important, because for people with COVID, especially that lost their taste and smell, you need to be using essential oils on the regular, because A, it will help your brain, it will help balance hormones, it will help balance neurotransmitters. 

Research has shown that inhaling orange essential oil, for example, will help produce serotonin, and dopamine, and help reduce cortisol levels, we are talking stress, depression, anxiety and same thing with other essential oils like bergamot, and lime, and neroli. Even though, you're not going to like immediately feel that emotional-- Again, there's a big difference between mental health and emotional health. Emotional health is more ethereal, it's more personal how your mental health, we could go back to the brain, neurotransmitters, and hormones. You will ultimately feel happier, you'll feel more joyful, because your body will be producing these transmitters and hormones. But you again won't get that emotional benefit. Don't stop using your essential oils, especially, when it comes to your body care, because that's really another avenue that we get essential oils is when they penetrate and absorb into your bloodstream and that's where we really love incorporating homemade body care as well. Because we know they're anti-inflammatory properties, we know they help make our bodies feel better. I wish I had the solution but I don't, because so many people have lost their sense of smell. We've been asked these umpteen times. We have found and research suggests, there's no proof on this yet, but preliminary research and just knowing aromatherapy, reading the experts and the manuals, there's a suggestion out there that stimulating your olfactory nerves through regular essential oil inhalation can help bring back the sense of smell quicker. 

It's the same theory that brings people to hair follicle stimulation to help with baldness or whatever it might be that you're trying to stimulate hair growth. That's why rosemary and peppermint can help especially, male pattern baldness or other conditions that people have with hair. Because you want to stimulate the hair follicles like alopecia and other things. I would suggest and the thing is, it's funny, sad, but how ironic, when we got COVID in 2020, Sabrina lost her-- my wife lost her sense of smell and I was gone for a year. And even now, she said, it's still-- I don't know what last she told me. She's at 75% better, 80%. And for me I lost it and I'll tell you, I got it back. Thank God. I think good Lord knows I needed a little bit more than she does. Never forget just because COVID interacts so differently with so many people. I was at this point, where I'm not going to say long COVID but these symptoms were just hanging on longer than I wanted and unlike anything I've ever experienced. The flu, I usually get the flu every year, couple days, boom, miserable, I get back up, I'm good to go. I embrace it. I look at that as like a sprint. I look at that as like a 5k. I look at that as like I just embrace my immune system. 

You know what's dangerous? Not getting sick. Not getting sick. You want to pee while you're planning to develop resistance to this stuff. When I got COVID the first time, I'll never forget not being able to smell for like a month. You saw Ezekiel, my little baby, I'll never forget, because Ezekiel was, he was a little baby when COVID came. I remember not being able to smell him and kissing him on the top of his head. Parents out there who have had especially breastfed babies, they just smell unbelievable. It's just baby smell, just baby smell, and I love it, and I can't tell you how many times. Just tens of thousands of kisses on the top of my kids' head and when I'm kissing them, I'm just smelling, and kissing, and smelling, just hugging, and smelling. I just remember hugging and kissing my baby and I couldn't smell him. I'm like, "This sucks." I got mad. I was like, "You know what? I'm on an assault against COVID. What am I going to do?" I started doing things. I started being more intentional about my aromatherapy inhalers, about my diffusers, about stimulating with more higher note like eucalyptus, peppermint essential oils. I'm like, "I'm going to knock this thing out." Thankfully, it went right back and I haven't looked back since. So, don't stop using your essential oils and try, especially, if you really can't taste and how hard is it to enjoy food when you can't taste, right?

Melanie Avalon: It's weird. I'll tell you that. Yeah.

Eric Zielinski: Right. Try your best to do what you could do to stimulate those things with regular aromatherapy and other strategies. Anyway, there're a number of things that you could try, but I would just encourage people, because you will get better and that's my hope, that's my faith. And I hope you don't have to deal with my wife, don’t have to deal with a whole yearlong of anosmia, because that's just not fun. 

Melanie Avalon: Was her taste gone as well? 

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, it was definitely dampened. Yeah, and you can't taste if you can't smell. Yeah, and she could discern salty and sweet, she could discern certain things, but it wasn't like, "Oh, it's the flavor of this. I love this." But you know what? Here's the thing, though. Take advantage of that, take advantage of that, because when you can't taste, you shouldn't be eating junk. Take advantage of that. The pastor of our church had COVID and he lost 20 pounds. I looked at him, he looks good. I mean, he's thin, he's trim, and he's in his 60s. I'm like, "Pastor, you're looking good." He is like, "Oh, I can't gain my weight back. I lost 20 pounds because of COVID. I'm trying to gain it back. So, I went to Chick-fil-A to get a chicken biscuit" and no joke. "Chicken biscuit and milkshake." I'm like, I'm starting to think to myself. Okay, let's think about this for a minute. But you know what? How cool is it to learn how to retrain our eating habits? One of the hardest things to do is to overcome that taste desire. It is like, "Oh, I really want that fatty, or I really want this sugar, I really want this whatever." 

I will say find the silver linings in the clouds. When I couldn't smell or taste-- No joke. When I couldn't smell or taste, I'll remember. I think you could get a feel for how we eat for when we went out to dinner together. We convert all of the things that "normal people" eat gluten free, sugar free stuff, but it's still gluten free pizza still isn't health food. It's not going on a smoothie fast. You know what I mean? It's okay. Almond flour with some filler stuff, psyllium husk, it's not bad for you, but our diet cheese or vegan cheese, and stuff that we-- Again, it's not health food. It's okay. But I started looking at myself and I remember I had-- Mama Z makes homemade breadsticks every Friday and homemade pizza. I took a bite of it, I couldn't taste it, and I was like, "You know what? Why am I doing this? This isn't even worth it. This is not even worth it. Why am I going to put these extra carbs, why am I going to enjoy these breadsticks or pizza when I don't even get the flavor to it?" I'm like, "I'm just going to eat some vegetables. I'm just going to flood my body with nutrition and if I can't taste it, okay, I don't care." It was this mentality. That's when I guess what I didn't eat chips. And okay. I get it. Cassava chips, gluten free corn chips or healthy chips, and then, you got the non-GMO organic stuff. We like our snacks, too. 

There are healthier versions. But again, processed chips, processed food is not health food. It's not like rice, or beans, or fruit, or vegetables. So, I didn’t eat chips. I'm like, "What's the point? for the crunch?" That really gave me an aha moment is that how much am I really eating to live or should I be living to eat? If you're in this situation, I'm going to challenge you to really tighten up. If you can't taste, you should only be eating the absolute healthiest of healthiest stuff. You should have just a rockstar physique right now and you don't want to just challenge you to get in shape, and exercise, and hopefully, you have the energy to do so. If not, then, build up to that. But don't fall into, "Oh I need to have a treat or I need to have this, or I need to have that mentality," especially, when you can't even taste it, because just think about the mentality that comes with that. We don't need those sugary sweets, fatty stuff all the time to make our life worthwhile. That's something that's really helped me, especially in the 2022, because as we're talking, I'm fasting right now, and I'm really, like, the Bible calls it like, a Daniel fast. I'm really fasting away from the sweetbreads and just loading up on fruits and veggies. Essentially, it's all I'm doing right now. Fruits, and veggies, and beans. I'm going strict, strict, strict vegan and intermittent fasting, and I'm working my way towards a just water fasting. How liberating it is that I feel good, I have energy, I know I'm doing my body well, but more importantly, it's giving me a little more control back. It's giving me a little more control back. 

When I'm at a restaurant, I'm not tempted to eat that bread in front of me. I think it's a discipline that oftentimes we've just never been taught in or if we have we lose over the course of years is that we really are in control of our desires a lot more than what we give credit for. And how many friends do we have that when they go to a restaurant, they can't stop. They can't stop eating the bread in front of them or they can't stop this, they're always doing in this. You do have the ability to say no. That's why I like to take these little experiences. That's it. We're going back. To me, that's a bio hack 101 is just a fast and just to reset your tastebuds and crazy enough that I'm doing this and I have done this many times in the past. Your tolerance for sweets, and fats, and things is alarming. You realize I can't tolerate this stuff like I used to. I was just thinking about butter sticks. Have you ever been to a carnival at your local fair with the little spinning rides that make people sick, and all that stuff, and they have fried butter? Have you ever heard of fried butter? Fried butter? You know what it is? It's deep-fried frozen butter that they put batter on. Imagine a butter stick that they put batter on and deep fried. People are eating that stuff right next to their funnel cakes, and elephant ears, and soak and draining it down with a coke and a beer. 

Here's the thing. If I were ever to eat one of those, I would literally vomit. I couldn't eat it. I wouldn't get sick. I want people to really think about what I'm saying here, because I had an aha moment about this a couple days ago, actually. It was like, "Wow," for me. Those people, if that's you that's you. Just say it's me. And then that was me, not anymore, right? If you had become so essentially desensitized, if you've adapted to such a high fat, high greasy, high sugary, high oily diet that you need a funnel cake loaded with powdered sugar, and sugar sauce, and you need a deep-fried butter stick to get your fix. That is a problem. Synonymous to someone who is taking and addicted to opioids, because an aspirin or an essential oil doesn't work anymore. That's the culmination. I can't think of anything worse at this point than carnival food that people are consuming. Why? Because the other stuff doesn't give them the fix anymore. It doesn't satisfy them anymore. Well, how did that happen? It's just years, and years, and years of high-sugar diets, high-fat diets. That's why, again, just think about how this happens to all of us. That's why when you used to go to Starbucks, it was a latte. That's it. A latte. You have a latte extra shot of espresso. And then, a latte extra shot of espresso and an extra pump of God knows what syrup crap it was. And then, it became to one woman, I'll never forget going to Starbucks, Trenta, 30 ounce, whatever, latte, six extra shots of espresso with 10 pumps of syrup. How do you get to the point where your body can tolerate that? It's years of adaptation. Let me be honest. It's years of abuse. And that's how our bodies respond. It's just a miracle, Melanie that we're even alive that that person can even live.

You cannot give that. You cannot give a 10 pump six shot latte to someone who's never had coffee before and have them drink it. They would explode. You know what I mean? They might actually go into a coma-- They may go into a seizure or have some sort of cardiac arrest. You can't handle that. But imagine, I actually have a friend of mine, who's a chiropractor who got to the point, where he was literally just eating coffee beans out of the can. He was eating coffee straight out of the can and living on energy drinks. This is a really, really deep moment in this person's life. A really dark moment. Lost his spouse, lost his wife, and he was in significant depression working or it was just a really, really bad place for him, and his sleep habits really suffered because of it, and he needed to get through the day. But I'll never forget him. He actually told me, "I need to stop this." As he was drinking an energy drink, having a spoonful of coffee beans, he wouldn't even screw around with making a cup of coffee. He realized he got to a point. 

Again, we all reach on proverbial rock bottoms. By the grace of God, he found his rock bottom, and he got up, and now, he still will have a cup of coffee, but it wasn't to that level. Do you need seven energy drinks to get through the day? All that to say is how unbelievably amazing our body is that it adapts to these things. But when you fast, when you cleanse, when you wean yourself off of that stuff, you realize how intolerant you are. Bring it full circle if you don't have smell, if you can't taste, treat it as a gift. Retrain your tastebuds, retrain your body to fill it with the nutrition that your body needs start to eat to live. Say that. I eat to live. I don't live to eat. You live to eat for the next funnel cakes, you live to eat for the next energy drink to get you through the minute. When we talk about depression and substance abuse in our book, The Essential Oils Apothecary, we cover this stuff, because essential oils can actually help with the addictive nature that a lot of these substances have. Because they help satisfy the addiction cascade. Essential oils have actually been shown to help reduce nicotine sensation for people and withdrawals for people that are quitting smoking. 

If this is really substance abuse at the core and we don't call it substance abuse, because it's food and that's not good marketing. But if you're abusing caffeine, and sugar, and fat, oil, the way that these people are, a lot of people are, that's substance abuse. We got to get rid of this thing. And ultimately, it's a mental health concern. Anyway, I know you don't need it, Melanie. I know you're super healthy and you got a really good grip on your diet. But for all the folks out there, with COVID, who don't have smell or taste, treat it like a gift. Really just treat it like a fast. You know what? I'm just going to eat the best food I could possibly eat and find a mentor that aligns with you. Listen to Melanie and the other podcast guests that she has about how to best eat and train your body to truly eat to live, not live to eat, and there'll be one of the most empowering things for you.

Melanie Avalon: Even for me, because I do tend to follow, there's not much I can really change in what I was eating. But even without my taste now and eating the normal "healthy whole foods that I've been eating," the experience for me has been very mindful and that I've realized when I actually am eating really the only gauge I have of when to stop is I have to really, really notice the change in my hunger, because the flavor is just completely gone. It's been a really enlightening experience. I'll definitely be grateful when the taste comes back, but I'm definitely learning a lot on the journey. Another topic I wanted to ask you about, you talk about something in your new book that was very cool to hear your essential oils perspective, CBD. So, is CBD an essential oil, technically?

Eric Zielinski: Oh, yeah, good question. No, because technically, essential oils are volatile, organic compounds. Volatile meaning, they readily evaporate at ambient temperature. When you are going down that Walmart cleaning aisle, you smell the particles that are floating in the air, because they're light enough, they're airborne, and then, they interact with your nose. That's volatility. Now, volatility can be good these compounds or they can be bad. There're good VOCs aka essential oils, but there are bad VOCs. Again, mentioning the cleaning stuff, but also your carpet, your building materials, your paint. People have heard VOCs is bad. Well, not really. VOCs are VOCs. They're just volatile organic compounds. Organic meaning, the carbon-based compound meaning, there are several different chemicals. When you're looking at a bottle of lavender, you're looking at 150 to 200 different chemicals in it that make lavender. It's not just, what is it? It's linalools, linalyl acetate. It's all kinds of different chemicals in the lavender itself, all right? That's what volatile organic compounds are. 

Because of their nature, they spread everywhere, and they permeate throughout the house, and they permeate throughout the room. We're going to put a drop on one side of the room, you're going to smell it within a couple of minutes. That's something to consider when you're creating the environment in your home is that, they will permeate everywhere and it's cool and little sidenote, you could become a walking diffuser when you apply them topically, because now, you're walking around and you're just really, really enjoying the aromatic benefits from those aromatic compounds. We try to stress going back to learning the basics of aromatherapy for people because you can ingest them, you can apply them topically, you can inhale them, because all of them work on different metabolic pathways and all of them work on different parts of the body, which is pretty important. Going back to volatility, CBD isn't volatile. CBD is essentially an herbal extract. It's usually, I hope not make sure it's a good extract, but oftentimes it's ethanol or some dangerous chemical solvent that extracts the CBD from cannabis. You need to look at CBD like you would in herbal tincture of sorts. You know you could do. Sabrina's been doing this for years, because her mom's an herbalist. 

You can put a bunch of rosemary, for example, put a bunch of rosemary in a mason jar, fresh rosemary, put in a mason jar and fill the mason jar with olive oil, and just let that thing seat for a couple of weeks. You then, strain the rosemary out. Every once in a while, you mix up the bottle, so the contents mix. And then, from that you have a wonderful rosemary herbal solution. That really was aromatherapy 2,000 years ago. Because they didn't have steam distillation. For something to be an essential oil, technically, it needs to be steam distilled, because that's where the volatile organic compounds go through the steam. All that to say is CBD is not an essential oil. Now, there is cannabis essential oil, but the compounds are completely different than the compounds in CBD. When you get CBD, is extracted, oftentimes from an unhealthy source like an ethanol again, and the thing about CBD is you make sure you get a good supplier, a good source. Like essential oils, the caution is, the market is relatively unregulated. Anyone can sell anything, put a label on it and sell it and there's a concern about that, because research has suggested-- Research like the government, they've done studies and they've tested this stuff. I forget the number off the top of my head, but a significant portion of all CBD products on the market are mislabeled, and I want to be careful here. Not by unscrupulous marketers screwing up and doing things trying to lie. There are those people. There are those people that are selling fake stuff, fake CBD, fake essential oils. They're adulterating it with additives and fillers to sell a product and make money. 

Unfortunately, it seems a lot of CBD is mislabeled in that there is THC in it when it shouldn't be THC, because THC is a component that gets people high. A lot of CBD out there like I'll never forget, a close family member of mine was dealing with during COVID some significant anxiety, and depression, and he heard that CBD could help. He went to the local dispensary, where he lives in Michigan and he got this crazy looking Cheech-- I got to point out this. I think it's important. He got this crazy looking Cheech & Chong psychedelic looking CBD bottle, and he ended up taking it, and he got so high, then ended up calling the ambulance, 911. He was hallucinating, he was just flipping up. It created a panic attack, and ended up going to the hospital, and ended up just monitoring him, and he asked me, "I thought CBD was good for me." I'm like, "Well, what product was it?" He explained to me, he took a picture of the bottle. I'm like, "First off, look at the bottle." I'm going to make a judgment call. No professional product that is therapeutic is going to look like a Cheech & Chong psychedelic hippie trip. We got to be real here. We're talking medicine. There needs to be a level of professionalism and no offense to the hippies out there, but come on. He's like, "What? This isn't good." I'm like, "Man, I'll guarantee you, you had a bunch of THC that was crap, that was trash. They just extracted it straight from the cannabis and it wasn't hemp. It was probably marijuana and all this stuff." Because CBD is made from hemp, it has zero THC, zero chance of getting high. 

It brings us back to why we try to teach people. Okay, let's be savvy consumers, because you can't just buy anything on Amazon and at your store and expect it to be good. CBD works wonderfully with essential oils really as a carrier, because CBD, it's a fatty substance and that has volatile and nonvolatile components, which means it has components when it's extracted that are similar to the essential oil, but because it's not steam distilled, it has certain things that essential oils don't. Just the same thing with I'm sure Melanie, you've heard of Boswellic or Boswellia. Boswellic acid is the healing, cancer fighting inflammation busting power behind frankincense resin. But Boswellic acid is so heavy, it doesn't pass through the steam distillation process. It's not in the essential oil. If you want Boswellic acids, you got to get it through a supplement form, which is great. I'm a big fan of supplements. You could take your Boswellic acid supplement, and use frankincense essential oil, and you get the best of both worlds. That's what CBD is. We like to add CBD in our capsule remedies. In the book, you'll see, I think 15 different remedies that we show you similar to how you were to go to the pharmacy. We're going to the apothecary that have a true therapeutic dose. It takes anywhere from two, three, sometimes up to six drops of an essential oil in a capsule and you always have to use a carrier. It's recommended to help absorbability of the body, protect the gastric lining, and it makes sense. You want to always, always, always dilute your essential oils.

Instead of olive oil for certain conditions, we found like, "Hey, add CBD as the carrier" and it works wonderfully. You can even do it on your skin. I have this great roll-on, this roller bottle with CBD and essential oils in it. Again, it's a two for one. They work really well together and CBD is rich in a chemical known as beta-caryophyllene, which stimulates the CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Well, that's pretty cool, because what that will do is it stimulates a certain pathway in the body that will really help with stress, anxiety, depression, and a number of other immune functions. Copaiba and black pepper essential oil are rich in the same chemical. That's why we have this beta-caryophyllene blend in the book, because we're trying to help people get the best out of both worlds. We're experimenting with it and we've found really only good interaction. There's no contraindication that I could see ever not to use CBD. If it's real CBD, I want to impress people with whether it's a supplement, whether it's CBD essential oil, anything you need to suspect something, you need to, I hate to say it, but everyone's guilty until proven innocent out there. You need to do your homework, you need to check, make sure the supplier, the manufacturer, you need to understand what you're putting in your body. You can't just trust. What got us in this situation, I really believe is going back to Joette Calabrese is people trusting that what's on the shelves must be good for me, what's in my pharmacy must be okay for me not realizing that, "Wow, there'll be tens of thousands of drugs soon thereafter recalled," because they cause significant side effects or there're certain food items. How many times does the FDA have to ban another hand sanitizer until we understand maybe we shouldn't be using this stuff? It's like, "Well, I don't use those 150 brands that are bad I use this one. Well, it's the same stuff." 

If you have to use hand sanitizer, because you feel you have to or for work, make your own. That's what we do for our kids' school is part of the school supplies at school. Isn't that crazy? Paper, pencils, markers, glue sticks, hand sanitizer, you have to have that to go to school. We make our own and the teachers are cool with it. By the way, we got our soap and our hand sanitizer in the kids' schools. Everyone, the teachers want them like, "Hey, we're out of soap. Can you give us more?" Yeah, because they realize the benefit of it. I got to say, our school very much embraces us and we embrace them. It's a partnership, by the way. That's the other thing. It's a partnership, life, your doctor, your school, your community, it should be a partnership. It should be give and take. It's not one sided and that we've gotten to this one-sided situation, where people are just walking through, "Okay, whatever you say, No way." If it's policy that my kid has to have hand sanitizer on before they walk into school, then, we're going to use our version and period. Okay. No one will ever say no. They're not going to say, "It has to be Purell." [laughs] You know what I mean? It's wonderful and hand sanitizer is so easy to make, just get a bunch of high proof alcohol, put a couple dozen, two drops of essential oil in a spray bottle, done. I mean, done. That's it. Easy. Smells good, kills the stuff you wanted to kill, but between us, I rarely ever use it, because I don't need it unless under those circumstances where I need to enter a place.

Melanie Avalon: One of the things Sabrina sent me in that package was her hand sanitizer. It's so epic. I was like, "This is so amazing." I'm sure listeners will love making that for themselves. Another topic that you have in your book that I think listeners will be really interested in and by the way, listeners, you just have to get this book, because it covers all the chronic conditions. But I particularly loved the section on metabolic health and even weight loss. Because I've been thinking about this a lot, especially, when it comes to weight loss and fat cells. I think, because of our modern diet and our environment that our actual fat cells have become often very resistant to weight loss and so, I'm actually very intrigued by the idea of topical application of things, because the way I see it, it's giving it direct access of those compounds to the fat cells. People will say, "Oh, there's no such thing as a fat burning cream." I'm not saying that's what this is, but I see a great benefit too if there are compounds that, for example, encourage fat, unlocking their fat stores that topical application of things might actually be very, very helpful. So, what did you find with weight loss, and metabolic health, and the use of essential oils for that?

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, it's a shame, because like you mentioned fat burning cream, there's definitely good fat burning creams out there. The thing is that the world of unscrupulous marketers have hijacked nature and bastardize stuff. I'm essentially a natural health apologist. You have religious apologists, all they do is apologize, and defend the Bible, and defend their sacred Scriptures, and I'm here defending the tenets of science, and history, and nature. Essential oils have been proven. They could directly curb your hunger, treat addiction, trigger lipolysis. Research has shown. Just inhaling lime and grapefruit stimulates lipolysis, which is your body's natural fat burning response to a stimuli. Now, this is to put things in perspective, again. This is not though, the miracle weight loss cream do nothing, like, do nothing. "Sit down all day on the couch, eat your chips, drink your beer, have your hotdogs, and put this cream on and you'll look like him in five days." No, that's not what it is. What these things do is they help stimulate your natural body's response for homeostasis. Maybe, oh, man, I should have talked about this five hours ago. 

What are these things? What are adaptogenic herbs? Adaptogens are natural plant compounds that help your body reach homeostasis. That's what we're dealing with here. Adaptogenic herbs, and people are buying them up by the loads in their supplements. All I'm trying to say is, "Hey, why don't we extract those adaptogenic herbs, and make them into essential oils, and get them really concentrated." Adaptogens, they help your body adapt to stimuli that are harmful. They help your body reach homeostasis. By definition, essential oils can be known as harmonizers. The fun thing is, you almost don't have to worry about what you're doing at times. It's not as prescriptive as people might think. For example, research has shown that in ylang ylang, the beautiful, beautiful aroma that's in a lot of love blends, and libido boosting buns, and all that stuff, in perfume, it's the primary component in most women's perfume. When you get the natural extract, the natural essential oil from ylang ylang, research has shown it can actually help people who are hypotensive, meaning low blood pressure, balance your blood pressure, but it also helps people, who are hypertensive, lower their blood pressure to get balanced blood pressure. 

How is that possible? How is it possible for the same thing to do two different things for two different people? Well, it makes sense. At the core of what we're doing is these essential oils help your body reach homeostasis primarily through an anti-inflammatory response. If you could reduce inflammation, your body can then start to function properly. If you could reduce stress, if you could reduce anxiety to the body at the cellular level, your body will start to function properly. That's really what these do. They're called harmonizers. To say that you can't go wrong, well, I'm going to be careful, because there are certain things. For example, lavender has been shown more times than not to put someone into that parasympathetic rest and digest state, which is that feast state. If you want to feast and if you want to eat a bunch of food during Thanksgiving, then, you're going to be diffusing lavender around, because it puts you in that place that you want to and you should, because we should have feast stages. We need to eat, we need to eat. You can't just fast all day. We die of starvation. But by and large, when you're looking at essential oils for weight loss, we look at how they interact with the mood, how they help you put yourself in a situation, where you're not going to comfort eat, and if you have certain conditions, this is where we can maybe be a little more targeted, which I love targeted supplementation. I love that concept is things like cinnamon bark, I mentioned before helps balance blood sugar, helps increase insulin sensitivity, which means great. If we can get the sugar out of the body, the bloodstream, then, we won't necessarily need to be feeding it sugar. So, we're going to help that craving, which is a big thing for diabetics and pre-diabetics. 

And if we could add peppermint, which has been known to curb hunger and also is a stimulant, so, we're not going to be necessarily craving food at the subconscious level to give me energy, because peppermint helps you breathe, and increases blood supply and airflow, and it helps increase actually athletic performance. That's cool. That's why we incorporate certain of these as a targeted approach. But to your point, we like to encourage people to apply them topically. Sabrina, she came up with something that was pretty profound. Because of the fat burning quality, the lipolysis, the oxygenating quality, because essential oils are rich in antioxidants, because of the ability what they could do to the skin, Sabrina came up with this fat burning roll-on which is lime and peppermint, grapefruit, cypress, eucalyptus, and cinnamon bark. She created this fat burning roll-on that she used when she competed for Mrs. Georgia and here she was, 40 years old, competing with girls almost half her age for this pageant and she had four babies at the time. Now, we have five, but she was a mom of four and I saw her body absolutely transform in front of my eyes in a matter of six to 12 months. She trained hard, like, she was training for a marathon, exceptional discipline when it came to her fitness. Her diet was unspoken for. It was unbelievable. Just no compromise, really training for this event. 

But there were some problem areas that she had, that she wanted to fix she said, "A little bit of cellulite here, a little bit of fat there." So, she started wrapping her body with a muslin organic cotton wrap with this fat burning oil and then she put saran wrap over it, so she looked like a mummy. She did this fat burning protocol and I just saw just fat drain off of her. But the thing was her metabolism was where it needed to be. She was in this position where she was training. This was something she was working on for months. But it started to make me wonder like, "What is the power of this if we use it properly?" That is something that I'm telling you. We actually have a diet book, the essential oils diet that covers this protocol. We included too as well in the apothecary if you're looking at getting our new book. But we've had many, many people, thousands who go through our protocol with our diet protocol and they tell us this. They tell us that our little fat burning roll-on and the wrap strategy gives them that little competitive edge to get over the hump. Because oftentimes, when we're doing something, we plateau. If you're trying to lose 20 pounds, because that's your goal, oftentimes, it seems people get to that place where they lose 15 and like, "Ah, how did we get to that next five?" It's doing stuff like this that can maybe help you just get to that next level, because our body will reach that state of adaptation. 

Again, what makes people be able to tolerate funnel cakes and fried butter, their body is adapted to high amounts of fat, and grease, and sugar, and salt over the course of years. Your body will adapt to your new diet, your new exercise regimen. If you want to go to another level, you might need to do more advanced strategy. I would call this an advanced strategy. But it helps, it works. And again, the research is very, very exciting, because what we're talking about here is this all in one. This all-in-one approach. Maybe looking at lime, because how many enough people-- Lime is one of my favorites, by the way. We need more lime juice, and you need to eat more lime peels in your smoothies, and just take a bite out of lime. When you go to a nice Italian restaurant or steakhouse, oftentimes, if you order an espresso, you know how they'll give you that that little rind, yeah, the little twist? You should do that on the regular. Just don't do that at a fancy steakhouse. Why aren't you eating lemon rind and lime rind? People don't think of it like, "Oh, yeah, I eat it at the fancy steakhouse. Why can't I eat it at home?" The lime oil, just might be-- 

I want to actually read something from my book, because I don't want to misquote this. Yeah. "Lime essential oil might just turn out to be the fat burning weight loss support that you've been looking for credited with naturally suppressing appetite, promoting weight loss and preventing weight gain. Lime oil can also, suggested by 2019 animal study reduce cardiovascular disease, risk factors such as elevated cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL levels, as well as two key enzymes that indicate healing from liver damage. This is something that's important because when you're looking at things like alanine, amino transferase, and aspartate transaminase, two enzymes that indicate liver damage, you're like, "How does that have any effect with weight and heart?" That's all I'm trying to point out in this book is it's all interconnected. You cannot be obese and not expect liver damage or heart concerns. You cannot have cancer and not expect it to not affect your mental health and maybe lead to depression, or substance abuse, or libido problems, or whatever. 

We are all interconnected. When you find that, when the body starts to break down, which is essentially, again, why COVID absolutely rocked this world, because the bodies of most people in the world were just broken down to the point where it couldn't handle this thing. I know this thing. Again, I'm not minimizing COVID for people, especially, for those who have lost their lives. Prayers go out to their families. It's been a travesty. But most people shouldn't. most people should not have lost their lives. If they were in a relative healthy state with no chronic conditions, the deaths would be a fraction of what they were the last two years. That's proven. You can't argue that. How do we get to that place? Well, it's looking at your life holistically. That's why I love lime oil. Because how does cholesterol interact with your weight loss? How does liver health affect with diabetes? It's all interconnected. That's the beauty about this harmonization mindset that we have. These known harmonizers, these known adaptogens will help. Again, this is herbs. I'm not even talking about essential oils right now. I'm just talking herbs, I'm talking lime, I'm talking like-- 

You could do this. If you could eat two lime rinds like two limes like whole, put two limes in your smoothie. That's about four or five drops of lime essential oil. That will give you a "medicinal therapeutic dose." But most people don't want to do that, so, they just rather have four drops of lime, what's easier for you. It's kind of fun. There're several, several of these different examples. And also, helping people with gas, and bloating, indigestion, peppermint is wonderful. You need to make sure you have proper motility, you need to make sure your GI tract is functioning properly, and if you want to lose weight, so, again, it's not like, "Hey, I use this advanced fat burning wraps protocol every day for the rest of my life to lose weight." No. It's like, "Okay, let's look at this holistically." We find that essential oils can really support your life to be healthier and it will help your body function better. 

Here's the bottom line. When your body functions better and oh, man, I wish I would have said this earlier. When your body functions better, when you don't have a metabolic burden on your body, your body can digest food and burn fat more readily. What's happening is because of the onslaught of over toxicity in our life, because of the chemicals in the air and the body care and the cleaning products, because of the foods that we're eating and drinking. The water, the fluorinated, chlorinated water that have just little micro toxins every day. It's putting a metabolic burden on the body. Your body can only do so much in a given time. When your metabolism, which is essentially the sum of the energy in your body used to maintain the processes necessary for life, that's what metabolism is. When your metabolism is burdened and when your energy stores in your body are being used all day, every day just to keep you alive, just to get these toxins out, if you were to eat and already eat things that maybe you shouldn't, there's no energy in the body to digest it, to properly assimilate it, that's why fat gets stored so quickly. 

Imagine a life, where you have less toxic burden. I share this, because we have, again, countless people that have followed us over the years that have told us this stuff. One woman said something that really was an aha moment to me. She was, "You know what? I didn't change my diet, I didn't change my exercise habits. All I did was I started making my own body care and cleaning products, and I've lost three to five pounds." Why? Because your body is functioning better. This again might be that little thing that you need. This might be that. "Wow, I plateaued or I need a little boost." When we reduce the toxic burden on our metabolism, the metabolism can do what's supposed to. That's why again, I love fasting, because it is the number one metabolic reset, is just to stop eating or to greatly minimize the foods. When you're making a smoothie, it's predigested food. It's like baby food. Your body doesn't have to break down and fight after all the-- Just think about the foods that you're eating. The hard foods, the meats, the grain, that takes a lot of energy and work to break that stuff down and to assimilate it into nutrition, so the body can live. Take the vitamins and minerals. 

Maybe someone right now, I would challenge just try a fast where you just go vegan for a couple days. See how you feel, see how you feel. Go from three cups of coffee to two and go from two cups of coffee to one. Wean yourself off of the coffee for a week. Wean yourself off a meat for a week. Again, I'll enjoy. Again, I don't want to get into a nutrition debate with people about meat, veganism whenever. I'll have grass-fed lamb, I'll have wild-caught fish, but it's in very much minimal moderation. If you look at the history of humanity, most people didn't have the money or the wherewithal to eat meat all the time. Most people ate foods grown from the ground. When you think of it, like, how much meat can we handle, imagine just what happens to your body. And the same thing with dairy. The same thing with your processed foods, the same thing with your breads. Just give that stuff a break for a couple of days. Fasting, I actually just posted this up on social media the other day. I'm like, "Hey, I'm doing a fast, who's interested, who wants to learn more?" It was interesting, because a lot of people automatically equate fasting is I'm just going to drink water. Well, yeah, that is a fast, but there's juice fasts, there's smoothie fasts, there's I'm just not going to go on my phone fast. 

Imagine anything that denies you of something that is "pleasurable for a positive reason." Why would you not go on your phone? I'll give you a million reasons not to go on your phone. Have a social media fast. This probably is the best thing for your mental health right now. Imagine a fast where you refrain from saying something to someone that you shouldn't. Imagine biting your tongue fast. That'd be great for your relationships. [laughs] You know what I mean? I'm talking marriage support here. Anyway, it's been a wonderful journey. But from a weight loss perspective, from a biohacking perspective, I want to encourage people to press the reset button as much as you can throughout the year and not just, "Hey, it's a New Year fast let's do this or it is a New Year thing." No, we need to have regular reset buttons, where we get away. And even fasting from being inside all time like, go outside for a couple hours. Maybe go camping. Remember camping? Does anyone do camping anymore? Yeah, the National Parks are full because of COVID. Get outside, get some fresh air, enjoy this lifestyle that we've been given, because it's a blessing. 

Heaven forbid, something does happen where we are diagnosed with something, I'll tell you the benefit is, we'll have a body, and a mindset, and emotional wherewithal that we'll be able to overcome if we are living this overcoming life. It's almost nothing can take you down. If you are training your body, and your mind, and your soul, and your spirit to overcome. It's truly an empowering, wonderful, wonderful lifestyle and when you do get knocked down, which will happen at times, you'll have support mechanisms, whether especially, people, I hope in your life. You'll have little biohacking things that you could do. Like for us, our infrared sauna is just a saving grace during this COVID thing. We love it, I love my exercise equipment I have in my home, I love my aromatherapy, I love my fresh airbrakes, I love everything in my life. I love everything in my home. We've built a home. It's taken us 15 years, but we've slowly built this healthy haven that is essentially a retreat from the craziness of the world and I call it my house. You can do that. Even if you live in a one-bedroom city apartment in New York, you could grow vegetables. You can do a little windowsill pot of herbs. You could get a one gallon or a five-gallon bucket from Home Depot, put dirt in it, and grow tomatoes in your apartment. We used to.

At one point, our dining room which was just nothing of a size like we lived in a really small house was filled. We grew pineapple in my little dining room in Georgia. And then, our pineapple had babies. Now, they created three pineapples. And our pineapple now, we have nine or 10 pineapple plants, they're the best pineapple I've ever had in my life. It is vine ripened, but we also had hibiscus that we made tea from, and we had tomatoes and peppers. It was crazy like our own garden inside. And then, when it got warmer, we put all the pots out there and then when it got cold, we brought them in. But whether you have a deck, whether you have a balcony, whatever, at the end of the day, I've learned one thing. There's no excuse. There's no excuse for us to do our best. That's it. There's no excuse for us to do our best. And oftentimes, which is really exciting. Our best gets better and your best of today seemed impossible to you a year ago. But your best today is the springboard for the best of tomorrow that you can't even conceptualize. We should be in that place, where we're growing. We're looking back and we're like, "Wow, what a great journey it's been." We need to give ourselves a little more credit, pat ourselves on the back, I say, "Thank God for helping me, and empowering me, and giving me the fortitude, and the character that I have to continue to grow. I'm grateful." You know to my friends and people like you, Melanie, people that support us, and love us, and people that do life with us, it's such a wonderful journey and it's a lifestyle that will never be perfected. That's really, maybe the fun part about it.

Melanie Avalon: That is so incredible. Listeners, now, you can see why I'm just obsessed with everything that you're doing. Because I just think this mindset is so important. I actually loved in the very, very beginning of The Essential Oils Apothecary, you opened it by talking about the connection between strength and joy, and I just thought that was so beautiful. It's such a needed mindset, especially, in our world today. Thank you so much for your book. And for listeners, we only barely touched on just a few things in the book, but it covers so many things. Insomnia, and libido, and fibromyalgia, and mental health issues, and it's just really, really a wonderful resource. You just answered this. The last question that I always ask the guests on the show and it is because I just really, really appreciate the importance of mindset. So, what is something that you're grateful for?

Eric Zielinski: I'm forever grateful for my relationships with the people that make me a better person, and for the space to grow, and to make mistakes. I value that more than ever. I'm really grateful at 42 years old for the five babies I have, my lovely wife, and for colleagues that are friends now local like you, and for other people to do what we do for, whatever, four and a half million people or whatever that visited our website. I'm grateful for life that matters. I'm grateful for a God, who loves me, who showed me a way that is full of light, and love, and purpose. I want to encourage everyone, because the reality is, I know not everyone's calling is my calling. I get that. I very well understand that. I have a unique calling like you do, Melanie, with your podcast, with your supplements, with your business. Not everyone's called to do specifically what I do. 

But I remember a time when I didn't have a platform. I remember a time when no one knew me. I will say, I still enjoyed the same things just on the microcosm with the people around me. I want to encourage everyone listening to be that healer, that apothecary in your community, in your home, in your family, at your church or synagogue, your community center, your work. Be that source of light. It is such a life worth living, when we're living for others and we're living with purpose and to have people to do that with, be all the more protective of your inner circle. Don't just let everyone in your life, and surround yourself with people that make you better that will challenge you, and will give you a safe space to make mistakes, and be who you are, but also, who will receive you. You need people to receive you and who love you for who you are, in spite of, not being perfect, because no one is. 

My heart and-- I'm glad you asked me that question. I actually forgot you asked that question at the end. Because my heart right now is so full of gratitude and thankfulness for that. There's an abundance of that, that I hope will be shared with everyone. Not only listening to this, but anyone who reads my books, watches our videos, and takes our classes, goes to our website, sees my social media stuff, I hope that can just spread and empower someone. Maybe right now, you're listening, especially, if you're listening at this point either you fast forwarded to the end or your listen. If you listen, now, you are diehard, good for you. I know we're preaching to the choir here. But if any of this has inspired you, I just want to encourage you to take a minute prayerfully consider what your role is in all of this, this thing called life. And not only this, but specifically, what's going on around us right now or how do you make the situation better for people around you?

Because oftentimes, again, we're preaching to the choir here. These are biohackers. These are people, who are interested in this kind of stuff. Your family, most of them, your friends, your people you work with your colleagues, they haven't been enlightened to this. They haven't been awakened to this. They think the solution of the pandemic is social distancing, masks, and hand sanitizer. They aren't even considering anything else. Imagine being a source of hope and light for them. What a great purpose? Without judging, boy, that's it. I'm grateful to find my place and I'm really excited to see what the future entails, and I hope our paths cross many more times, Melanie, and I wish abundant blessings and prosperity to all your listeners, and it's been a privilege being on your show. Thank you.

Melanie Avalon: No, thank you. I did want to plug for listeners, again. We will be doing a giveaway for The Essential Oils Apothecary. Check out my Instagram for that. And thank you, Eric. I am so, so grateful for your work. I'm so happy that we've actually met. We're going to have to see each other again, very, very soon. That will be amazing. You're going to have to come back on for your next book, which is so exciting. I cannot thank you enough for all the work that you're doing. Are there any links that you'd like to put out there for listeners? How can they best follow your work? 

Eric Zielinski: Yeah, thank you. Yeah, thank you for that and thank you, again. Everyone, it's been a pleasure hanging out and chatting with you. If you want to learn more about me, and my website, my wife, you can go to naturallivingfamily.com. That's our website. If you want to pick up the book, it is available everywhere books are sold, you could go to eoapothecary.com. That's eoapothecary.com and we got this fun little special gift package with videos, PDFs, eBooks, a lot of guides, like that drug interaction chart I talked about, all kinds of good stuff to help you get the most out of the book. So, pick up the book, download your free goodies. Again, that's eoapothecary.com and I hope you enjoy.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Well. I will put links to all of that in the show notes and this was just so, so wonderful. Hopefully, we can all see each other soon and yeah, I'll talk to you soon. Thank you so much. 

Eric Zielinski: Yeah. Bye-bye.

Melanie Avalon: Bye. 

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