Jenny Sansouci Landscape

Health and Wellness blogger/author Jenny Sansouci is my guest today. She shares how she uses a healthy lifestyle (which includes mushrooms, CBD, and THC amongst a few) to benefit her both personally and professionally. Jenny shares how her exploration of holistic practices helped her to get and stay sober, along with supporting her Father through cancer treatment. Jenny’s new book The Rebel’s Apothecary is out now. She uses mushrooms, CBD, and THC in an introductory and understandable way. This is such an informative and intimate conversation. Enjoy!

Listen to the episode here:

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Jenny Sansouci – The Healing Power of Cannabis and Mushrooms

Welcome to the show. Our guest is Jenny Sansouci. She originally got into the space of self-care with a blog called Healthy Crush a long time ago. She has a book called The Rebel’s Apothecary, it’s a practical guide to the healing magic of cannabis, CBD, and mushrooms. This was a great conversation because it started with her personal journey to sobriety and good health. I don’t know that she expected to talk about that but she was so honest.

I even appreciated how even within that, it’s like, “There are all these programs out there that work for people. What is going to work best for me and my sobriety?” She shares how she’s on the path to writing a blog and being into health. Her dad then gets diagnosed with cancer, which led her deeper into this exploration of cannabis, mushrooms, and CBD supporting him through his chemo and his treatments.

It was a great conversation. What I appreciate too is how user-friendly it is if you’re not somebody who has looked at this, getting some of these ingredients into your everyday life, and how you can do that safely. There’s a lot of taboo around it and you don’t need to. The other thing was how she got her parents to change their minds or look at it differently. There has been such a big narrative written about what this stuff is and so much of it isn’t true. Jenny offers a great entry into how she’s made this work and the way that we all can. Enjoy the show.

How are you holding up at this time of COVID-19?

It’s like an hour-by-hour change and emotions for me over here. individually, I’m fine, safe, and healthy. You can dive deep into the collective suffering and it’s hard to come out of that when you start to go there and read the news. It’s up and down. How about you?

I want to talk about that because everybody has different perspectives. Esther Perel was on a podcast talking about when you know that you’re healthy and the people close to you are healthy, it’s possible that you’ll economically be able to pay the bills. When people are talking about this, they go, “We’re great.”

You recognize how fortunate you are. You don’t want to say anything other than that. She said there could be crazy things going on at once. You could be conscious of where you’re at and then if you’re empathetic, you’re now picking up what other people must be going through and even having your own feelings. What’s interesting too is that the story of what it is keeps changing.

I live in New York City. You’re in LA, right?

You’re the city?

I’m not in the city now. I’m with my parents up in Massachusetts. They live in a quiet country town. I’m hunkered down here. The part that makes it harder is to know what my city is going through, not know when I’ll be able to go back there, and how everybody’s doing there. The fact that it’s the epicenter of the pandemic makes it feel more at home.

When something like this happens, the hardest place to be is a populated place like New York. My husband is from Hawaii and he always jokes, “It’s the last place you want to be when stuff goes down.” I appreciate New Yorkers’ spirit. I’m not suggesting that they don’t have it. It’s multiple. It’s that number. It’s close space.

I didn’t even plan to be up here for this quarantine. I came up here for two days to go to a cancer hospital appointment with my dad. I was going to go back to New York the next day and that was when things started to ramp up. I was like, “Maybe I’ll stay here for a couple of extra days and see how things go.” I have three days’ worth of clothes in total. I’ve ordered all this podcast stuff so I could stay here for as long as possible.

How’s your dad doing?

He’s doing well. We had a meeting with his oncologist. He’s been on chemo for almost 2.5 years. Everything’s stable. He has a pancreas tumor and a liver tumor. It’s stage four pancreatic cancer. He’s now been off of chemo for over two months and everything has stayed stable. His bloodwork has gotten even better than it was when he was on chemo. They’re keeping him off chemo.

We’re going to get into your approach in support of patients while they’re going through this and for overall health by using cannabis, CBD, and mushrooms. Do you also think that now maybe his body’s getting a break from the chemo? If this good stuff is working even better, it’s having a chance to rejuvenate.

I think so. He has so much more energy now than he had when he was on chemo. Giving his body a break and continuing all the extra things that he’s been taking has been boosting him up even more.

Is his oncologist open to that support? I want to talk about your journey on how you got here. Chinese medicine has always been a combination, they’ve always been open to herbs and acupuncture. There are what we would consider traditional modalities as well. You’re in this situation. When people fall ill, their families or close friends become their health advocates. He’s lucky because the fact that you’re informed about some other ways to do it, that’s giving him a boost. Also, the advocate sometimes bumps into the doctors.

I hear that a lot. We were lucky in the sense that his oncologist was open to it. He was skeptically open to it but he didn’t say no. When we decided to get him a medical marijuana card, he said, “I can’t tell you that it’s going to help but go ahead and try it. It probably won’t hurt.” We were like, “Green light.” It’s the same with the mushrooms. When we got him on some of the medicinal mushrooms, we brought it in to show the oncologist and he said, “I’m not going to tell you this is going to do anything helpful but go ahead. If anything goes wrong, we can reassess. Try what you want to try.”

[bctt tweet=”Supporting our nervous system to be in a more relaxed state of calm can help support every other function in the body.”]

Not everyone’s doctor says that. I get many messages from people saying my oncologist said no. I always encourage people to ask. Is there a specific reason why they’re saying no? There may be. It may be a drug interaction. It may be something about that unique person’s situation that it’s not right and that’s fine. A lot of doctors don’t know anything about it so they say no because they don’t have enough information. They weren’t trained in it.

Let’s start with your journey and then let’s talk about your dad’s diagnosis and how you’ve gotten here. It’s interesting to me because I come from a sports background but I’ve been in this self-care pocket for more than 25 years and being like, “It’s important to take care of your health. It isn’t about being high performance or looking perfect.”

I used to always joke and say that it was not only the cheapest therapy I could find. I could deal with my real childhood problems. Also, to be a better human being. You get married and have kids. You go, “The only way I have a fighting shot to respond to this my best possible way is by trying to feel good and healthy.”

I find it fascinating that in what we’re going through, does it take something like this to be a real reminder to people about not only the importance of our health but also participating and taking that responsibility? I’m going to try to participate and learn and even experiment with different things that feel good. I always think people have to feel good, “That resonates with me. I will try that.”

In my house, Laird will go towards something. He drinks something called Shilajit and he has Chaga Tea every night. I know how good it is for me but I don’t hammer it down as much as he does. I do other little things. Your body says you need more of this and more of that. It’s still always a personal path but it’s still saying, “Let me learn. Let me keep trying and participating in this.”

I am interested to see if there will be a real shift or if people will forget and go back to eating their bagged, preserved, and processed foods and not seeing the importance of health or if this is collectively going to smash us into a new perspective of, “I do have enough time. Maybe even though I like the way certain things taste better, I probably could understand and learn to enjoy these other things and also the feeling I get from these foods.” That’s the other thing. A lot of times, people walk around and they don’t even remember anymore what it feels like to feel pretty good.

You have to have a personal reason to want to make a change. This is probably the first time, at least in our lifetime, that the entire world has a personal reason. There’s nobody that’s not affected by what’s going on. Whether you get sick or not, you probably know someone who’s gotten sick or something somewhere is affected in your life. It is a time when a lot of people are going to say, “Maybe this is the right moment to make a shift.” Those shifts have to be something that you can feel, you can notice, and you can get behind and believe in. Everyone’s going to have a different way they get there.

It’s always important in that messaging to remind people to make that personal, nobody has all the answers, and there’s no one size fits all. Some people are going to be vegan and some are going to eat animal protein. Some are going to want to bang iron and some are going to want to be outside. All of that is great.

The other thing interesting is when I go outside or if I have to go to the market or whatever, I’m not so worried about my own health. I don’t live with an older person. I have children and a very healthy husband. I would never want to give it to somebody else and not want to be asymptomatic and then somehow I go to the market and there’s somebody there who’s more vulnerable. That is interesting because it’s also the idea of we are connected, looking out for one another, and protecting the other people around us. That is such an interesting drop into this whole thing. When you start to look at it that way, you connect to people in a different way.

I didn’t care about cannabis. Medicinal mushrooms, I cared about a little bit in the sense of I’ve been into wellness for a long time so I was interested in them. It was more like, “Here’s another superfood I can add to my routine.” I didn’t care about cancer. Not that I didn’t care about cancer but I had no personal reason to look into cancer or what could help with chemotherapy. I didn’t even know what chemotherapy was. My whole life and perspective on all of this changed so much as soon as my dad got sick. That personal reason catapults you into a new realm of learning.

You went to an integrated nutritional school. When you were growing up, your parents are healthy, and that’s a conversation in your house or it’s something that you took on? How did you even get into that place of wanting to go deeper?

It didn’t happen until around 2007. I was 24 then and I quit drinking. I had to get sober. I was a major party girl and had to quit all alcohol and drugs. For me, that was the wake-up call into learning more about nutrition. You had to figure out ways to feel good. Once your life changes, you’re like, “I need to figure out how I can feel good.”

I was using drugs and alcohol to feel good all the time. When I quit all of those things, I realized the foods that I was eating weren’t making me feel good. I was using these substances to feel confident about myself, to feel energized, and to feel like I could get through life in some type of manageable way. I had to figure out how to feel good. That’s what got me into nutrition.

Was this masking pain or trauma or was this like, “I’m a little shy and this is an easier way for me to connect with people.” Many people battle or deal with it. Instead of being like, “I’m having a hard time, or, “I need this to make me feel better to be able to do this,” or, “This happened to me and the only way to keep going in my life right now is to numb versions of that.” Now that you’ve brought it up, I’d love to know your combination of things. Also, what gave you the wake-up call and even the steps to figure out how to make that change?

My husband used to drink alcohol. It was confusing because he was home every day. He’d go to bed by 9:00. He’d have one bottle of Pinot Noir or maybe two. He was self-medicating. One day, he said, “I’m tired of lying to myself that I could stop anytime I want.” There were some events that occurred that brought it to light. It wasn’t like, “He woke up one day.” What people don’t understand is that’s hard to do. It was a courageous and noble quest if you will.

For me, at 24, it was hard because my whole life was just partying and drinking.

Where were you?

I was in New York City and I was working for a restaurant magazine. At the time, there were no online menus. I was working at this restaurant magazine where we had menus for every neighborhood of Manhattan in a magazine. There was no Yelp or anything like that. I was at all these different restaurant openings and we were at bar openings. My whole life was surrounded by alcohol and drugs. It was just how it was and it was what everybody was doing.

Jenny Sansouci Caption 1

Jenny Sansouci – Walking or running is therapy. Endorphins will change my day every time.

At the time, I didn’t see it as masking pain or trauma. I thought that it was how life was. I do have addictive tendencies and an all-or-nothing mentality with a lot of things in life. I’m a deeply sensitive and deeply emotional person. Looking back, I can see that was probably part of it, trying to manage feeling things so strongly that I would reach for something to take the edge off of how much I was feeling about everything. I still am like that. I have to reach for other things now.

You live in that heightened environment. There are lots of people in New York. That’s almost an interesting accentuation of all the things coming at you on a higher volume.

Life was super fast-paced, which was the reason I moved to New York. I was like, “The bars are open till 5:00 AM. You can do anything you want in the city. It’s going to be crazy.” It was. It only took about six months of me living in New York for me to hit that bottom where I had to make the change.

Did you have to go and get help?

What happened was that my boss at the time saw the way that I was drinking. I would come to work late all the time. Our whole office partied together so I didn’t think it was that big of a deal. He would make little comments to me, “Maybe you should stay in one night. Maybe you should stay in and read instead of partying so much.” I knew that he could see what was going on.

One day after a big night out, I woke up and it was 11:00 AM on a Wednesday. I was supposed to be at work, of course. My only thought was, “How can I not get in trouble for this?” I was like, “What can I say to make it okay that I’m late for work?” Everyone knows I was out drinking the night before. It was this manipulative thing where I was like, “I need to try to get out of this somehow.” I was like, “I bet if I tell my boss I have a drinking problem and a problem with drugs, he’ll feel bad for me and I won’t get in trouble.”

Did you think that you did or you were like, “I’m going to use that as a card.”

I was going to use it because I knew he was a compassionate person. I knew he cared about me. I knew that if I said I needed help, he would help me rather than yell at me. I was trying to avoid getting in trouble. I pulled him aside when I got to work and I was like, “I have to tell you something. I have a problem with drugs and alcohol.” As I said it, I started crying. I felt that it was the truth. That day, he called one of his good friends that he used to party with and that he knew was in a twelve-step program. He got her on the phone and she agreed to meet me that night. From then on, that was it.

I did get sober through a twelve-step program for a few years. I ended up experimenting again with drinking and then took my own path to sobriety, which is a hard topic to talk about. People who are twelve-step sober can threaten their sobriety to hear stories of people doing it another way. I was quiet about it for a long time and careful. I still do want to be careful because I don’t want to recommend that people who are sober try to experiment but that was my path.

Laird, my husband, stopped. He said he subbed out the wine bottle for a Pellegrino bottle and there was a lot of dessert for about six months.

There are other ways. When I was in the twelve-step program, there weren’t any other ways. That was the only way that anyone knew of at the time. We didn’t have books, podcasts, and all these things about different ways to stop drinking. It wasn’t cool to stop drinking. It was this weird thing that I felt ashamed of. It was hard for quite a long time. Now, there are so many people talking about sobriety and making it more accessible, which is awesome.

What’s interesting for me is when we feel this pressure to be like, “I have everything under control. Everything is okay as long as it looks okay and as long as it appears okay.” I’m always fascinated. I wasn’t raised that way. Everyone was a lunatic around me. Nobody was concealing anything. Instead of saying, “I’m struggling with this,” or, “This happened to me,” and trying to get to the good side of messy, real, and healthy living because life is messy.

I was looking at families where everyone is put together and everything was perfect. They make me so nervous. I’m like, “What’s going on?” Instead of, “I screwed up here. This happens.” It’s reminding people if they’re going through something like this. With the tale that you’re saying and as you lead us into where you are now, it’s important for people to see over and over examples of others that are doing well, thriving, excelling, and then saying, “I had some serious bumps and I made it out.”

It isn’t about the expectation for any of us to be perfect. If you had other things that you see that are out there and if people are doing the twelve-step and that’s working for them, great. If there were other ones that you thought, “I know a lot of people have had success with those programs. They appeal to a lot of people.” Maybe you can share some of those.

My friend, Ruby Warrington, came out with a book called Sober Curious, which is awesome. She talks about being curious about your relationship with alcohol and not labeling yourself either an alcoholic or a normal person. There’s a whole spectrum of reasons why people drink. Everyone’s relationship with alcohol is different.

It can be interesting even if you don’t think you have a problem with alcohol to check in about it and say, “Why do I drink? Does it make me feel good? What would it be like to go to a wedding and not drink? What would it be like to go to the social event and not drink?” Start to play with those ideas. A lot of people would never consider going to a social event and not having a drink. It’s like, “Interesting. What is that about?”

I grew up in the Caribbean. When I was 13 to about 15, I drank rum and stuff because that was completely normal. Pretty much after that, in my whole adult life, I never drank. I had a bar in my house. I lived here for over eighteen years. I ripped the bar out and put a huge storage cabinet. I was like, “Is this ungrown up of me that I don’t have a bar that I never had filled with alcohol in my home?” You think, “That’s what you do.”

I grew up in such a place that was such heavy drinking that it was never my thing. That’s why I’m always fascinated because it’s a real human spectrum. For some people, maybe it is from trauma. Some people might have the switch. There are all these tones and things going on in people’s lives. That’s a great point. Sober Curious is a book.

Tommy Rosen has a program called Recovery 2.0. I haven’t gone through it. He’s an awesome yoga teacher and a great voice in recovery. I love Russell Brand’s book, it’s all about recovery. He talks a lot about the twelve-step program too but he puts a different light on it. Out of all of this, the most important thing is to make sure whatever you’re doing is for reasons that make sense to you.

The problem for me was that I backdoored my way into sobriety accidentally. A few years into it, I started to question, “Am I doing this for me? Am I doing this because my boss wanted me to or my twelve-step sponsor wants me to or my boyfriend who was sober wants me to?” There were all these things that I wasn’t sure about.

[bctt tweet=”The nervous system is so much connected to our stress levels.”]

As I got more into nutrition and got more into health, I started to think, “Could I be one of those people that runs a half marathon and then has a beer at the end? That sounds cool. Maybe I could be that person instead of the person who has twelve drinks in one night.” I went out and had to figure it out for myself. It turned out for me that it was too risky. Sometimes it’s okay but sometimes it’s not.

Do you mean your state of being? I talked to a plastic surgeon and he said, “If you’re going through a divorce, do not go into a plastic surgeon’s office. If you’ve had your third kid and things are cool but that skin on your stomach isn’t going to change and you eat pretty well and you move, let’s talk about it.”

For me, the realization I had was that sometimes I could say, “I’m going to have two glasses of champagne and then I’m going to drink water for the rest of the night.” Sometimes I would and it was fine. Sometimes I wouldn’t. I would even think that I could and then I was like, “How did the night go wrong? How did I end up drinking so many more drinks than I wanted to?”

There would be too many times for me where it felt like Russian Roulette. I’m not sure what was going to happen when I take that first drink. I had to figure that out for myself. I also had gone through so many years of sober experiences. I went 4 or 5 years with no alcohol before doing this experiment. I like myself better sober. I realized I liked my social interactions better sober. I had gone to the wedding sober. I had gone to all the events sober and I had more fun. Once I learned how to be sober and those skills to use, I liked myself better in those moments.

You’re in New York and you’re doing some work on yourself. What leads you to the path to go into the field that you’re in now?

I got into Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. I went to see her speak and she was speaking at the school called the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, which is where I ended up enrolling. I went to see her. In the end, they did a whole presentation about this nutrition school. I was like, “This sounds awesome.” I was doing all this research into nutrition and health already. I thought, “Why don’t I get some proper training in this?”

At the time, I was already writing a blog. As soon as I quit drinking, I had all this creative energy that I didn’t know what to do with. I started feeling like I had things to say. I started writing about it online and blogging. I thought that the nutrition school could be a perfect complement for me to have more topics to write about.

When you get out of school, how do you think you’re going to make a living? You could even take certain classes or courses maybe not as in-depth as YouTube to learn for yourself. Also, it’s, “What do I do with this degree?”

When I was going through the program, I was working in advertising. I had a full-time job. I had to manage these things on the side. They train you how to be a health coach and to get individual one-on-one clients to do nutritional coaching with. By the time I got out of that program, I felt like I could do that in my sleep because they give you so much information on that. I started to get one-on-one clients that I would take at night and on the weekends.

At the same time, I was learning how to make money on a website because the company that I was working for it was like a WebMD type of company. It was a health website. I was learning that websites can make money. I was getting health coaching clients and then monetizing my blog all at the same time and kept building that.

It’s hard to visit you and study about you. You wouldn’t be like a salesman type of person to me at all. There are a lot of people who have to solicit their own business. What surprised you about yourself during that time? It takes some balls to go up to people. I’m sure people would look at you or see you. They knew that you went to school and you were already writing the blog and things like that. Maybe you could share some of the things that you didn’t know that you had in you. Also, maybe some tips if someone’s trying to figure out how to become an independent business person that has to save the business.

What I found was the most effective was I didn’t have to pitch my services in that way. I didn’t ever have to feel salesy because I was putting out so much free content. A big part of it is to put out free content that you’re excited about and passionate about. The more blog posts I was writing about things I was learning, the more messages I was getting from people saying, “Would you be able to get on a one-on-one call with me? What should I do about this? What should I do about that?”

To all those people, I would send them this link and say, “I do offer one on one calls and here’s the deal.” Of course, some people sign up and some people don’t. The more you put out content that gets people interested in what you have to say, the more you open that door for people to come to you and ask for help without having to push it out.

That makes it easier. Especially, you’re starting out. You’re going to have to do a lot of extra stuff for free. You’re going to have to create extra value in order to do the thing that you want to do. Sometimes people don’t realize how powerful that is. You’re planting the seeds and you won’t see the return for a minute.

You said something important, you said the content that you were excited about. People feel that. They’re like, “She’s in it because she’s excited about it.” That’s another important point. Also, saying, “I’m willing to create the value and then I know all the business and the money and everything will come.” When did you write The Rebel’s Apothecary? Share your journey. I don’t want to isolate it and say that you’re heavy into cannabis, CBD, and mushroom. Maybe you can say the journey and how you got here.

After I graduated and was working with one on one clients and building my blog, I had the opportunity to work for a functional medicine doctor in New York City and his name is Dr. Frank Lipman. I was working in his office as a health coach and that took my knowledge to the next level. I was learning about new remedies and supplements and sitting with all of his patients while he made dietary changes for them and supplement recommendations. That was a cool experience. That was my next step after going out on my own and doing my own thing.

I was diving deep into the world of alternative medicine and meeting a lot of interesting people along the way. Dr. Lipman has a lot of clients that come in that are in the wellness field and a lot of prominent people in the wellness field and people that are doing interesting things. I got to meet a lot of those people. The way that I got into what I’m doing now is that over two and a half years ago, my dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. That was a turning point for me.

Up until that point, my passion for wellness was mostly about feeling good, my own wellness. How can I have the most energy? How can I support my own health and make healthy swaps for things that I’m used to and help people stop eating gluten, dairy, or whatever it is that they need to shift to get the result they were looking for? I don’t want to say basic things because they’re all important. People feeling good is important. This was a life-or-death thing for me when my dad got that diagnosis.

If you look up pancreatic cancer, most of the information is negative and that was terrifying to me. At the same time that I was terrified, I was also resistant to that being the outcome for him. I was like, “I know so much about natural remedies now. I have many contacts now in the field of wellness that I could probably call and help get some information.” I felt this fierce need to help him.

Jenny Sansouci Caption 2

Jenny Sansouci – Sleep is the first thing that people need to correct. Once they correct their sleep, everything else starts to fall into balance.

I started getting on the phone with people, with the doctors that I had met, with the people in the wellness world that I had met, and I started to put some pieces together. I was never going to suggest that my dad doesn’t do chemotherapy and traditional medicine. Of course, he was going to go down that road and whatever people choose to do is up to them.

It’s personal. Also, your dad is probably of a different generation. Before his diagnosis, had you been slipping your parents, “Maybe you could face that out of your diet and put that in.” A lot of times, when you’re their kid, even though you’re a grown-up and informed, were they open to those ideas prior to this? Were they like, “Sweetie, sure you live your woo-woo life in New York.”

My dad and I talk about that a lot because I would always try to get him to make swaps. When I first started learning, I would go home and I would take out the loaf of bread and be like, “This is just a loaf of corn syrup, did you know that? Look at the first ingredient, it’s corn syrup.” He would be like, “Okay.” He would humor me sometimes. I got to the point with it where I was like, “There’s only so much I can say until they care about it for some other reason besides the fact that I’m saying it.”

Whenever I was home, I would make healthy food for everybody. I would gently nudge things like, “Let’s get organic milk instead of regular milk.” It was not something that everybody wholeheartedly embraced because I was into it. My mom is super into health in general. My dad has done whatever he wants and that’s been fine. He was finally ready to say, “Let me take some guidance here.”

You get the diagnosis. You start talking to people and seeing what keeps coming up. That’s what happens. You check with the same 5 to 10 resources and you’ll hear 4 or 5 things that keep coming up so you go, “These are beacons to show me. I need to look down these five pathways.” I’d love to know how you approach your dad who is now managing his relationship with life and death and the doctors who are creating a protocol that you have to follow. How do you say, “In addition to what you’re going to do, let’s have this other protocol to support you while you’re getting chemo or what have you.”

It was synchronistic. At the time when he first got diagnosed, I had gone back to New York and he was here. He had recorded a documentary about medical marijuana because he thought it was interesting and it was all about using it with cancer patients. He watched this documentary on his own. At the same time, one of my friends told me to look into CBD and cancer. CBD was one of those things that was starting to creep into the conversation but nowhere near what it’s like today. I was like, “Let me look into this.”

I started researching and I found so much information about cancer patients using cannabis, in general, CBD, THC, and all the other compounds in cannabis for cancer. It was all anecdotal but it was people’s stories online. I was finding all this information. I brought back a bottle of CBD capsules to my dad from New York. I didn’t know anything about it at the time but I was like, “I’m going to bring some back and maybe this will help him.” I brought him some CBD.

When I got back, he told me he had watched this documentary. We were both on the same page. I didn’t have to do any convincing to him because he was already open to it. We decided to go down the path. I was staying up every night researching and trying to figure out what do we need to do next. We got him on the path of getting a medical card to get the specific cannabis oil that we had seen in this documentary and that I had done a lot of research on. That’s the main thing that we wanted to get for him and the thing that he’s been taking.

Can you share specifically what that oil is? Even in this day where there is quite a bit of information, which makes it great and also makes it even more confusing, people are like, “With CBD, will I be stoned?” There’s still in the dialog. There are 94 applications of CBD. Maybe you could, to the best of your ability, explain if there are a few different kinds. Why would you put it on topically? Why would you take it? Also, the one that you got for your dad, what is important about that one? I love risking something that the worst thing that will happen is it won’t work.

That is the case with a lot of things with cannabis. A lot of times, the worst thing that will happen is you feel high. Depending on your tolerance, you can try different things. The oil that we got started with, in a lot of places, it’s called Rick Simpson Oil. There’s this guy named Rick Simpson, he had skin cancer and he uses oil on his skin cancer and his skin cancer went away. He was one of the inspirations behind this oil being at a lot of medical dispensaries.

Did Rick Simpson put it on topically?


Why do you think that worked healing externally? Your skin’s absorbing it and it is going into your body but do you have any feelings or opinions about why you think that worked?

It turns out our skin has a ton of receptors. We have receptors throughout our whole body that interact with the molecules in cannabis. We have a whole system in our body, the endocannabinoid system. CBD and THC and the other molecules in the cannabis plant will interact with that system. Our skin is covered with those receptors. It’s not surprising to me that it would work on something like skin cancer. Of course, that stuff is anecdotal but there are a lot of stories of people using that oil successfully.

There’s another good documentary called Weed The People. That is a documentary about this same specific oil but being used in children with cancer. This oil is high potency. One drop the size of a grain of rice could have 50 milligrams of THC in it. If people aren’t familiar with THC, 5 to 10 milligrams of THC will usually get you pretty high. 50 milligrams of THC is a lot.

The Rick Simpson Oil is traditionally high in THC. The one that my dad is taking is a 1-to-1 ratio of THC and CBD. A lot of the doctors that I’ve consulted with for the book recommend more of a mix rather than just THC because all the compounds work better together. They boost each other up to work more synergistically and more medicinally. He’s taking a 1-to-1ratio. That’s not the thing that I would suggest for people for everyday use.

A lot of people are impacted by cancer. Your dad has a specific kind of pancreatic cancer. Do you think something like Rick Simpson Oil could be applied to different types of cancer or do we not know? It’s different for the skin. It’s probably changing the ratios for children and things like that. Your dad is taking it orally.

Of course, I’m not a doctor and can’t tell people that they should take it but many people have been using it for all different types of cancer, internally. Some people use it in suppositories. If they have cancer that is close to the anal region, they can use suppositories and get the medicine as close to the cancer as possible. My dad is not at that point. I keep telling him, “Keep getting better. Also, I’m going to make you use suppositories.” He’s like, “No.” People mostly take it internally or topically if it’s skin.

[bctt tweet=”You have to have a personal reason to want to make a change.”]

There’s a lot of CBD. People are using CBD to take the edge off of anxiety, soreness, and all these other things. Remind me though even if you have a non-psychoactive, you’re not stoned, you have to have a little bit of THC for it to work. Isn’t there a baseline percentage? If people are out looking for products, and it is there and there’s a ton, it’s important for them to understand that for CBD to work, even if it’s non-psychoactive, they can’t be afraid of the THC because they need a 0.5%.

If you have CBD all by itself, it’s called CBD isolate. A lot of the CBD products, especially CBD waters and those things that are coming out, it’s going to be CBD isolate which is the CBD molecule. It can work but you need a lot more to feel the effects, which makes it much more expensive because you have to take such a larger amount.

The legal amount for CBD oil, not at a dispensary, is 0.3%. If you have even a little bit of THC in there, not enough to make you feel high but a tiny bit, it can boost up the effectiveness of the CBD. Hopefully, you’d have what’s called a full spectrum, which is the full spectrum of compounds within the cannabis plant because they all work as an entourage to boost each other.

Usually, for people who don’t want to get high but want to try an effective CBD, start with the highest CBD to THC ratio possible. Out in California, they have tons of different ratios. A 30 to 1, meaning 30 milligrams of CBD to 1 THC, would be a good place to start if you don’t want to feel any of the THC effects. Once you start to get down to 10 to 1 or lower, 8 to 1 or 4 to 1, that’s when you might start to feel a little bit of the THC. If you don’t care about that, that can be effective for sleep and anxiety for some people. You can play around if you don’t care about the THC but some people do and some people don’t.

A lot of people have great experiences and some don’t have great experiences with THC. Also, during this time, people are feeling anxious. Whether you want to have a little more THC or not, especially to end your night, relax you, and slow your mind down, it’s not the worst thing in the world. There are so many healing components or helpful things in THC. Weed, marijuana, being stoned, sitting on the couch, and now you’re going to overeat.

The great thing is seeing how that’s getting redefined in our culture. That’s why I am interested in your story because it’s also separating CBD from THC even though they’re connected and it’s important to combine them but also not throw the baby out with the bathwater and say, “This is a tool that can support us and help us for a lot of different reasons.” We talked about anxiety, skin cancer, and other types of cancer. There are a lot of other things that CBD is good for.

To touch upon the THC thing for a little bit, there are some ways to use THC without feeling the psychoactive effects. Also, if you do use it topically for pain or muscle soreness, you can use a high THC product or a massage oil even can be relaxing without having the same high that you would get if you take it internally. That’s one of my favorite ways to use a high-THC product, for pain. I broke my tailbone a few years back and so I have this soreness and pain if I sit for too long or if I do certain exercises. I have a topical that’s CBD-THC in equal amounts of 1 to 1 and it is amazing for pain. You don’t feel anything from that.

Is it strong-smelling?

Not really. Some have smells but with the topicals, no.

There are probably people reading and they’d be like, “Why wouldn’t you want THC so that you’d feel a little relaxed?” With the kids, are they using the least amount of THC for seizures and certain things?

For epilepsy, it’s been effective in kids. They’re typically using a pretty high CBD product for those kids. There are ones with a little bit of THC that can work more effectively than just CBD alone.

You do this research. When he got the diagnosis, does he start pretty quickly into treatment?

When he got the diagnosis, it was Thanksgiving 2017. We probably didn’t get him started on the cannabis and mushrooms for a month or two after that. We got on board pretty quickly but he did have some chemotherapy side effects when he first started the chemo like nausea, fatigue, loss of appetite, and he was losing a bunch of weight. As soon as he incorporated this cannabis oil, his appetite came back and he started to gain the weight back. His nausea has been non-existent and he’s felt good.

It’s THC for nausea. Obviously, it increases your appetite and things like that. It’s a villain in a lot of places.

THC can be helpful for nausea. How brutal the side effects are.

They always say, “What kills you first? Cancer or chemo?” I get it but it kicks your ass. What mushrooms? Did you use the mushrooms to boost the immune system and support the immune system? What mushrooms did you choose and why?

He’s taking a bunch of different mushrooms, probably eight different mushrooms or so. The first ones that I got him on were Turkey Tail and a supplement called AHCC, which comes from shiitake mushrooms. That is used in China and Japan in conjunction with chemotherapy to keep the immune system strong. It’s widely used out there. Once I did the research on that, I got him on that. The Turkey Tail has been shown to reduce tumors and there have been studies on it. That’s one of the ones that I could find scientific studies to show.

We love studies.

Since writing this book, I’ve gotten so much more into scientific studies. I did so much research.

Feelings are nice. You can talk about that personally but it doesn’t go far. On the AHCC, did they take that in a pill?

They take that in a pill.

The Turkey Tail, we’re you doing it in a smoothie? How were you getting that in?

With Turkey Tail, we started him off on a powder extract that you put into a smoothie. Now, he’s doing a tincture. I’ve switched different brands and things for him to try along the way. Either a powder extract or a tincture, he puts that into a smoothie every day. You can easily take that in capsules as well.

We loaded up on Turkey Tail when we started staying home. Laird drinks Chaga Tea almost every night. Sometimes people want to incorporate things like mushrooms. This is a non-threatening entry. I wouldn’t have a problem giving it to my children and personally taking it. That’s confusing. It’s like, “How much should I take? Which one should I take?”

There’s quite a lot. You have Maitake, Lion’s Mane, Chaga, and all these ones that you’re talking about and so many. Is there maybe a couple of your favorite baselines that if someone is reading this, regardless of your age and even if you’re feeling great, you incorporate and how to support your immune system?

Chaga is one of my favorites for that because it’s super high in antioxidants. It’s good for the immune system. It’s one of those ones that you can take foundationally. You can take it as general wellness. Also, if you feel like you’re coming down with something, it can help. The mushrooms don’t stimulate the immune system necessarily, they balance it.

They modulate the immune system so they can work with you where you’re at in a gentle way. You’re not going to take Chaga and feel something. You’re going to take it over time and it’s going to be supporting your immune system. Chaga is awesome because it tastes so good, too. You’re saying he drinks Chaga tea every night. It has this vanilla and earthy flavor to it on its own.

Jenny Sansouci Caption 3

Jenny Sansouci – Stress and anxiety can lower our immune system and make us more susceptible to getting sick. The more stressed out we are, it’s affecting our sleep so much.

I’ll be honest with you, he’ll make it for me and I put whatever local honey is around. The other thing is I always say to people, “All day long, there are only a few people that are going to take stuff that tastes like ass and keep doing it.” Laird will be like, “Great dirt tea, folic acid.” For me, it’s 3, 4, or 10 times after that. Once in a while, I’ll be a little prickly one night, a tiny bit of local honey.

Yes, there are parameters about what we’re trying to do. I’m not going to put white sugar in my Chaga tea. Also, I’m not afraid to put a twist on it that I know works for who I am or what mood I’m in. I want to remind people that they could take tablets if they want or if they want to put in a smoothie. We put mushroom powders in our coffees in the morning so we know a little of the base is covered. Believe it or not, it tastes fine.

There are a bunch of different ways you can take it. I like the earthy medicinal taste of herbs and all those mushrooms and stuff but not everybody does. You can take it in a powder. You can throw it into a smoothie that you’re already making. Foundationally, Chaga and Reishi are amazing. If you were going to take two, those are two of my favorites for overall immune system support, nervous system support, and getting those antioxidants from the Chaga. Chaga and Reishi are two of my favorites that I take every day. There are powders that you can put into hot water, coffee, or tea or you can take them in a tincture if you like tincture or capsules.

It’s super easy, too. The tincture that I like is strong and concentrated.

I take Lion’s Mane in a tincture every day and that one is good for brain support, memory, and cognitive function. If I’m going to sit down and write or work, I’ll take Lion’s Mane. Every mushroom has a different medicine that it brings to us. Overall, all the medicinal mushrooms are good for overall wellness. My dad takes a ten-mushroom blend powder that he puts into his smoothie. That’s a good one to take. If you want to cover your bases, you can find a blend.

I don’t know if it’s true but I read somewhere that turmeric and Chaga are two of the things that you can take all the time. With other things, you want to cycle in and out. Chaga, specifically, it’s maybe more systemic. You could take it over and over. It’s foundational. You mentioned the nervous system, people don’t realize how much that impacts your sense of well-being and your health. We always talk about the immune system now but we don’t talk about the nervous system. Maybe talk about how it works, how they’re related, and how that impacts us in a deep way.

The nervous system is so much connected to our stress levels. First of all, everyone is experiencing so much stress and anxiety. Stress and anxiety can lower our immune system and make us more susceptible to getting sick. The more stressed out we are, it’s affecting our sleep so much. Having high levels of stress, we’re losing sleep, our immune systems getting depleted, and we’re overall not feeling well.

Supporting our nervous system to be in a more relaxed state of calm can help to support every other function in the body. When you’re stressed out, all of your body’s resources are going toward your nervous system being stressed and not able to heal. Getting some healing in the nervous system is important. One of the best things you can do for your immune system is to get more sleep. If you’re highly stressed and anxious, you’re not going to be sleeping well. A lot of times, sleep is the first thing that people need to correct. Once they correct their sleep, everything else starts to fall into balance. It’s important there.

This is where tools like what you’re talking about are important. Sometimes we can’t get there on our own. We can’t turn the brain off or the chatter or the worry. You could say, “Have a notebook by your bed.” Yes, you could do that too. “I have breathing routines that we can get you into.” Honestly, I have an issue with sleeping.

There are many times I have used THC to say, “I’m going to bed.” I’m not trying to drive an excavator or take the kids somewhere or do a math problem, I am going to bed. I’ve used that because I realized that there are times I can’t do this on my own and I can’t use all of these manual tools that I know what to do to get me to sleep. I need to have something that puts me to sleep.

You wake up and, all of a sudden, you’re in front of that eight ball a little more because you’ve had a good night’s sleep. It’s not like it’s bad but I’m worried or I can’t shut it off so I need some help. It’s better if we can avoid taking Ambien and these kinds of things like Valium and whatever. I’m not saying that there isn’t maybe a place for that. I would always prefer to take some THC.

CBD and Reishi. As far as mushrooms, Reishi is good for sleep. It can help to calm the nervous system, especially if you take it over a long period of time. Take it for a couple of weeks, you’ll notice that your sleep starts to get deeper if you take Reishi at night or drink Reishi tea. CBD can be helpful for sleep, especially if it has a little bit of THC in it.

As far as THC and sleep, everybody’s going to be different. For some people, a little bit is good but too much can make your mind go quicker. You have to experiment with that. It can be helpful for falling asleep. People taking edibles will say that it lasts longer. You can either take a capsule or an edible that could help to last throughout the night rather than the tincture or inhalation. It can be quicker acting but they don’t last as long.

For people right now especially, I’m like, “Don’t do anything that concerns your lungs unless you’re using a nebulizer and doing some things that are good for your lungs.” The only thing I would say about an edible or something like that is it would almost give you a gap before you went to sleep so you almost felt tired before bedtime and then go to bed. I have missed time that and woken up and still felt stony. That isn’t a great look.

You don’t want to take too much and it can last for a long time.

You drink it so late and then you drop into sleep but then it goes through your digestion and depending on what you ate and how much fat you had and all these other things. I did that one time and I was traveling for work and I thought, “I’m going to get a solid sleep but I had to get up early.” Navigating through the airport wasn’t pretty. With your dad, you get him on the mushrooms, and he starts his chemo. How do you use these other products to support him? Are you cycling it? Is it constant? What does it look like?

He’s taken it constantly. From the beginning, we started him on that Rick Simpson Oil type of 1-to-1 CBD to THC oil, which you can only get at medical dispensaries. We started him on that, taking it 2 to 3 times a day. At first, he was taking it three times a day but the THC was a little bit too much for him to be having it all day long so he switched it. Now, he takes it morning and night. It’s about the size of a grain of rice. He puts it on a little bit of peanut butter and eats it.

The mushrooms, he’s been taking those consistently. The only thing that we changed is we added Lion’s Mane into his routine. Maybe about a year into chemo, he was having neuropathy. His fingers and toes were tingling and he couldn’t feel his buttons and things like that. I asked him if he’d be willing to add Lion’s Mane because it’s been shown to regenerate the myelin sheath around the nerves and he said yes.

[bctt tweet=”With cancer, the hope is always to cure it but it’s not the goal. The goal is to manage it usually.”]

Within two weeks, he said he could start to feel the contact lenses on his finger again. He could feel the difference between a dime and a quarter in his pocket where before he couldn’t with his fingertips. Lion’s Mane can be helpful for that. He’s been taking it consistently. Because his blood work has been getting better and better and he’s been stable, we haven’t wanted to change anything up. He’s been on it every day.

Give your dad a lot of credit. I always call it the faith window in exercise or food. That Lion’s Mane example is a dramatic example. Mostly, it’s that over time supporting impact. It’s not like, “I feel so different.” I give him a lot of credit for the faith window of like, “Yeah, sure.”

One of the things about those mushrooms with the chemo, in particular, is that what I learned through this process is a lot of people can’t tolerate the chemo for very long. Sometimes it’s the chemo that ends up killing people or they have to get off of chemo because their body can’t tolerate it because their immune system breaks down and then cancer takes over. There are so many things that can happen.

The mushrooms have helped his immune system stay strong enough that he can tolerate them. He’s tolerated over 50 rounds of strong chemo. His doctor said most people do 8 or 10 rounds of this max. To see him going this far on it and staying strong and playing golf and traveling and feeling good, that’s the mushrooms at work, keeping his immune system strong.

Is your mom taking it as a booster to her own everyday health?

Yeah. She’ll now put the mushroom blend. She puts it in her tea. She doesn’t do any of the cannabis stuff. My dad and I are all into cannabis stuff. My whole family edited and proofread my book for me. After she read the book, she started to put the blend in her tea.

Did he change other things in his diet? Did he go more plant-based? Did he do different things also during this process to support him?

I get that question a lot. The two things that he did that were the most dramatic is he quit drinking and cut out sugar, for the most part. That’s not 100% but he lowered his sugar to a minimal amount and cut the alcohol out completely.

Alcohol is loaded with sugar. We talk about this all the time in our house. Half of the booze addiction is sugar addiction. There are a lot of desserts. He never ate dessert. As soon as he’s off, it’s like, “I made sure to have sugar.” At the time, that was going to be better than the booze. He’s gotten rid of the alcohol. There are foods with high glycemic index and it’s hard to navigate that.

The addition is that he has this green smoothie every day that my mom makes and that’s where she put some mushrooms in. It’s good. It has a protein powder, greens, a banana, sometimes some blueberries, some peanut butter, mushroom powders, and mushroom tinctures. It tastes good. He has that every single day. That’s something that he’s added in.

He’s not the type of person that’s going to do a super strict keto diet or vegan diet. What I learned quickly was another thing with chemo is that your appetite goes away and you have trouble tasting things. I tried to make him a bunch of different meals when he first was going through treatment but he was like, “I need to eat what I can eat.” I realized that if he’s going to keep weight on, we need to let him do his thing.

That’s a great point about choosing your battles. When someone has cancer in the family, the whole family and all the friends are all going through this with the person. They’re not feeling that pain and that discomfort but knowing when to lift them up, maybe when to push them, when to pull them, and when to hug them and say, “He’s doing these smoothies. He’s doing all this other stuff. If you want to eat, whatever. You’re going to keep your pounds on because that’s important.” It’s an important thing. Do you have some of these recipes in The Rebel’s Apothecary?

Yeah, there are a lot of recipes in there, some of the ones that I’ve used for my dad. The smoothie recipe is in there. There’s a chili recipe that I made for him a lot at the beginning where I would add Turkey Tail into the chili. Turkey Tail is one of those things that if you have the Turkey Tail powder, you can sprinkle into any savory dish and get some Turkey Tail in there. There’s a bunch of those recipes. I have a lot of other recipes contributed by other people, mushroom and cannabis people.

If you could drop off three health reminders whether it’s through food or things people could implement that would support them that for you have come up tried and true. We’ve talked about the mushrooms. If there are other things that you feel passionately about that could be a tool for people, what are those? It doesn’t have to be something that we eat or drink.

Something that helps me a lot is having some type of morning and evening routine that’s related to feeling good. For me, first thing in the morning and right before I go to bed whatever I do is important. I’ve been having this nightly routine that’s been working for me through this quarantine of foam rolling and stretching while listening to a podcast or something inspirational or some type of calming music.

Every night before bed, at first, I was reading the news and refreshing Twitter and seeing what was happening in the world and that wasn’t helping me sleep. I have a salt lamp that I put on and I’ll stretch and listen to a podcast that helps me. In the morning, I’ll do some type of meditation. I don’t have a meditation routine that I do every single day but I’ll do some type of meditation and journaling combo, which is a game changer for my morning.

We talked about The Artist’s Way but there’s something called Morning Pages that Julia Cameron talks about in The Artist’s Way, which is waking up and writing three pages and dumping your brain onto the page. That clears your mind to get all of that out of your head and have a clear head for the day. That helps me. Also, exercise. Walking or running is therapy. Endorphins will change my day every time. Some type of endorphins, however you can get them.

Are you surprised by the path that you ended up here and talking about mushrooms?

Yes, I’m surprised. The thing that surprised me the most about cannabis is that I largely have been ignoring the fight for legalization for my whole life. When I used to smoke a lot of weed in college, I thought it was all about getting high. I always thought that I never had any reason to think about it in any other way.

What I’ve learned throughout this process is the fight for legalization has been so much about patients getting medicine this whole time. If you look into the history of it, AIDS patients have been fighting to get access to this medicine. It’s different than what I thought it was. It was unexpected to come into this field, for sure.

With the mushrooms, too, I didn’t even know there were so many different kinds of mushrooms. Most people think of the mushrooms that you see at the grocery store like the button mushrooms or psychedelic mushrooms but there’s this whole other array of mushrooms that have so many powers. It’s been surprising.

It’s weird that they somehow politicize cannabis for other reasons a long time ago. We’re still getting a residual story of that. What does it look like? Your dad has another two and a half years of making sure he’s good and his blood is improving. In five years, what does that look like?

Jenny Sansouci Book

The Rebel’s Apothecary

With pancreatic cancer, if it’s Stage 4, and it’s spread, usually, it’s not the type of thing where their hope is to cure it. The hope is always to cure it but it’s not the goal. The goal is to manage it usually. Of course, there are many stories of people who have cured it and who had clear scans and all of that, which is amazing. It’s what we’re hoping for. Usually, the protocol is to manage it as well as possible and keep the person’s quality of life as good as possible.

For him, he’s two and a half years in. He’s already in the tiniest percentage of people that are still around after this amount of time. They haven’t seen anything like this at the Cancer Hospital. They aren’t sure what to do so they’re having him off of chemo. When I say they’re not sure what to do, it’s more like they don’t generally see someone doing this well. He’s off of chemo until something changes. if something changes. If something does change, he’ll go back on to chemo.

Did he go into this process and gained back his health? Was he average healthy?

Average healthy. He had some heart issues. He wasn’t super into healthy food or anything. He’s always been pretty fit and athletic but nothing crazy as far as his health.

Besides incorporating some of these mushrooms and other things, do you think there’s something about this experience that’s made your dad different, that he is different or approaching things differently?

In a lot of ways, he’s much more appreciative of every day. With the health stuff, he’s opened his mind up to all these different health modalities. The biggest change is that for every single day, he’s grateful. Every morning, he’s excited about the things he gets to do. Every night, he’s like, “That was a great day.” He’s always saying, “Today was a good day.” He’s appreciative of every day he has. When he got diagnosed, he didn’t think he had that much more time. Now, it’s years in and he’s doing well. Every day is a gift to him and he’s always reminding us of that, too.

Jenny, first of all, I love the story of your dad. I also appreciate you being open about some of your journeys because we are all connected. The thing is that you saying one little thing over here maybe helps one other person whether they have a family member with cancer or even saying, “I’m living this lifestyle. Maybe I’m going to take a look at it.” Also, it’s that reminder that it’s okay to want to go on an exploration the way you want to. There isn’t one way. Your book is The Rebel’s Apothecary. Where else can they find you?

My blog is I’ve been spending most of the last eighteen months working on this book. That’s been the main thing that I’ve been doing. The blog hasn’t been updated as much but that’s where the blog is. I’m on Instagram, @JennySansouci. The book comes out on May 19th. It’s a weird time to be launching a book in the middle of a pandemic.

It’s a perfect time. We all need all the tools that we can to fortify ourselves. My hope is always that people find their real reasons but it isn’t, “They’ll do it your way or my way or their neighbor’s way.” They’ll find their real reasons and then they’ll go into the journey of, “How do I want to eat? What other things can I take? How do I want to move?” Also, our emotional health. It’s like, “Why am I worried?” Those kinds of things. Those are the deeper layers of self-care, not just, “I’m wearing my pants from high school.” It’s May 19th. Find it on Amazon. You can’t go to a bookstore right now.

It’s like that whole dream that every author has when they write a book. It’s walking into a bookstore and seeing your book on the shelf. I’ll just have to see it online.

Getting it out there is an accomplishment in itself.

It’s a wild process.

I look forward to seeing you on the other side of this. What do you want to do next? Do you have something in your mind?

I’ve been getting so much more into different herbs. The whole study of cannabis and mushrooms has gotten me into herbalism and different herbs and plants. I’m also interested in how other cultures are using plants as medicine and getting curious about that. I’m going to keep diving a little bit deeper there.

They say that for anything we have, Mother Earth has the medicine for us. The US is the youngest country and we are the teenagers of the planet. If we’re doing certain things for thousands of years, it would be okay to check them out.

I’m feeling slowing down, connecting to the earth, connecting to the different plants and herbs, and seeing what else they have to offer us.

Thank you.

Thank you.

Thanks so much for reading. If you’d like, rate, subscribe, and leave us a review. All of my music was graciously done by Frank Zummo and Tom Thacker. If you want to see some of the behind-the-scenes action, follow me, @GabbyReece. Remember, don’t miss new episodes every Monday.

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About Jenny Sansouci

Jenny Sansouci HeadshotIn 2010, Jenny became certified as a Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, which was a game changer for her. After graduating, Jenny worked as a health coach in Dr. Frank Lipman’s functional medicine practice in New York City where she worked directly with hundreds of his patients. In 2017, Jenny’s dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer, which led her down an entirely new path of research and learning in the world of health and wellness. The result was Jenny’s new book, The Rebel’s Apothecary: A Practical Guide to the Healing Magic of Cannabis, CBD and Mushrooms.