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The Rebel's Apothecary & Medicinal Mushrooms with Jenny Sansouci (EP#76)

Mason is joined by the wonderful Jenny Sansouci on the show today. Jenny is a Brooklyn based author, blogger and certified health coach who has a keen interest in the healing powers of hemp and medicinal mushrooms - a woman after our own heart! 

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Mason is joined by the wonderful Jenny Sansouci on the show today. Jenny is a Brooklyn based author, blogger and certified health coach who has a keen interest in the healing powers of hemp and medicinal mushrooms - a woman after our own heart! Jenny has just released her new book The Rebel's Apothecary. We're beyond thrilled to have Jenny with us today, sharing her knowledge around these healing herbs. Tune in for the full download.

Mason and Jenny discuss:

  • The medicinal use of hemp.
  • The Eastern vs Western view of cancer.
  • The use of hemp extracts as an adjunct therapy for chemo patients.
  • The healing potential of Psilocybin in depressive disorders.
  • The journey that lead Jenny to researching and working with hemp and medicinal mushrooms.
  • How to talk to your doctor about using alternative therapies in conjunction with your standard treatment plan.


Who is Jenny Sansouci?

Jenny Sansouci is the author of The Rebel's Apothecary. Jenny is a certified health coach and creator of the wellness blog Healthy Crush, where she's been writing since 2008. Jenny is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and has been trained by functional medicine doctor Frank Lipman, MD in New York City. 



Jenny's Website

Jenny's Instagram

Jenny's Book



Check Out The Transcript Below:


Mason: (00:01)

Hi. Jenny, thanks so much for being here with me.


Jenny Sansouci: (00:04)

Thank you so much for having me. This is super exciting. This is one of my favourite podcasts, so I'm really honoured to be here.


Mason: (00:14)

Yeah. This is great. I mean, I feel... First time we've spoken, but as we were just chatting about before we jumped on the pod. It was an interesting little back and forth collaboration between us just without having spoken and that kind of like it really encapsulates the nature of how much as a community now and historically, how much has gone into and how much it's a unified effort to bring these medicines like herbal medicinals and medicinal mushrooms, all these things. It's just, it's impossible for you. But so, like I said, it's not impossible, but it's only when you really drop into the nature of it, it's impossible for your ego to hold onto the accolades of, yes, I'm the one bringing medicinal mushrooms to the people or hemp to the people. It's just this huge depth of everything.


Mason: (01:06)

There you were talking about, your new book is The Rebel's Apothecary: A Practical Guide to the Healing Magic of Hemp and Mushrooms. It's just like, yes, what a title! And it's coming at a really beautiful time, a time when people are stepping into their sovereignty and approaching sovereignty in the nature of not relying, solely on institutions of medicine but increasing the medicine in their own apothecary and their own lifestyle. Talk to me about arriving at hemp especially, why did you... We'll get to mushrooms later, but why did you land there? And can you tell us about what you were saying, the historical journey to make this available once again to modern civilization and the shoulders of giants you're standing on?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:58)

Yeah, sure. And just to touch on what you said at the beginning about the collective information that we're all gathering and sharing from so many different sources, including the plants and the mushrooms themselves, I feel like more of a messenger not the expert on these things or anything like that. There's so many people that have been researching these things for so long and so many people that have been using them as medicines for thousands and thousands of years. And you are definitely one of those people that I've learned so much from, and I'm so grateful for your work. I just want to say that right off the bat because while I was researching the book, I was listening to your podcasts and I was just fascinated by how deep you go into the research and how much you care about quality and science and really helping people get the best products that they can get. I just really appreciate that about you. So thank you for doing that.


Mason: (02:51)

It warms my heart. It's like that's like it's just such a nice connective feeling the first time we're speaking. And just you're out there kind of sharing this information and we'll get to your personal experience and your father's experience and what's really spurred on. But just knowing that there's been that sharing through the mycelium of consciousness between us and knowing from that you're out there making all this information accessible through your book over there in New York while we're here just rambling on in the podcast. It reminds you that you don't have to do everything as well. It really takes the pressure off so we can just buckle down.


Jenny Sansouci: (03:33)

Totally. Yeah. And that you can find the things that you need so easily. When I was researching the mushrooms and I would just put into the podcasts, I would just search Chaga and you came up immediately and I listened to your podcast on Chaga and I was like, "Wow, I really appreciate how much he cares about the research and science and how much he can really nerd out on these things." That's the kind of person that I trust who's going to really dig deep. So yeah, I really appreciate it and I'm happy to be talking to you now. It does feel like a really nice synergy, so thank you.


Mason: (04:08)

Sure does. Yeah, I know.


Jenny Sansouci: (04:10)

But back to your question about hemp. The way that... It's really interesting with hemp as a medicine. I personally never thought of it as a medicine. I smoked weed all through high school and college and I just thought of it as a recreational drug as did everybody that I knew. Same with mushrooms. I had only tried psychedelic mushrooms or button mushrooms or portobello mushrooms. In college I tried psychedelic mushrooms and it was all just recreationally and I never thought of these things as medicine. I mean, particularly with hemp. I quit drinking and using drugs in 2007. And for me that meant hemp, that was part of it.


Jenny Sansouci: (04:57)

That wasn't something that I was doing regularly but for me just getting totally sober, I cut out everything. So I just never thought about it again. And in no way did I think about the advocacy for hemp or legalisation. I just, it wasn't something that I cared about because I just thought it was about getting high because that's all I had ever experienced it as. And then 2017, 10 years later after I had given up all drugs and alcohol, my dad got diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer that had spread to the liver. And that was, I mean, anyone that's had that diagnosis or knows somebody that has that diagnosis, it's very destabilising. It's very shocking to the system. You're in this denial. It's scary. I knew nothing about cancer, except cancer is just a scary word and comes with a lot of fear.


Jenny Sansouci: (06:03)

When he got diagnosed, we were totally blindsided by it. I had been in the wellness world for over 10 years at this point doing health coaching and blogging about different wellness topics and really interested in nutrition. But this was, for me I was like, this is a really huge thing that I now need to step up and try to figure out how I might be able to help my dad. And because I had so much experience with functional medicine doctors and looking into nutrition and herbs and supplements, I thought, he's going to go down the traditional route of getting chemotherapy but I want to figure out what I can do to support him, whether that's with food or supplements. And I had no idea hemp was going to be part of that.


Jenny Sansouci: (06:54)

I started doing some research and I found a lot of stories of cancer patients using hemp, not only to potentially help their tumours. I'm not a doctor and I'm not going to say that it will help kill tumours, but there are plenty of anecdotal stories of people having that experience. But the biggest wide-ranging experience is having it help with chemotherapy side effects, which I didn't know this at the time but there are many chemotherapy side effects that are debilitating for people, whether it's weight loss, pain, nausea, not being able to sleep. There's so many different things that people experience just from the chemotherapy drugs, and there was people everywhere using hemp to alleviate that.


Jenny Sansouci: (07:39)

So that's how I started kind of getting into the research of hemp. And from there, I did look into some of the history of even the legalisation. And I realised that the fight for hemp legalisation has always included patients trying to get access to medicine. It's not just about people wanting to get high, it's been about AIDS patients wanting access to medicine, cancer patients, people that are just using it for anxiety or pain or just looking for relief. And that's been a major theme of all the people fighting for the legalisation for as long as it's been going on. And now I'm definitely part of that and supporting full legalisation for sure. But it was very unexpected.


Mason: (08:23)

Yeah. It's definitely, I think it's gotten to the point where hemp has hit the mass consciousness. I think it is even some, what we call like old fossils here, like liberals opposite here. Like you all Republicans around liberals here.


Jenny Sansouci: (08:41)

Oh really?


Mason: (08:41)

So I'm just like, yeah. So here old liberal voting fossils who are really stuck in their ways even going, "You know what? Yeah, that's a bullshit law that someone would try and stand in the way of hemp being used in medicine." So it's kind of it's at that point where we're probably preaching to the choir. What's nice as you were saying, you're someone that's interested in health and wellness, you're doing it professionally as is everyone listening here where we talk to a lot of practitioners. However, that's something I like to say about myself is I'm like, I am consciously not becoming a practitioner.


Mason: (09:21)

What I like is the approachability model where we can work with practitioners, as your dad would have been, as you were saying you've worked in a functional doctor's clinic. We have access and it's a particular world. But there's something... Sometimes that world needs to come off its pedestal a little bit and remember that that's its place and the majority of the healing is going to occur through integration of what we learn in that professional place and then executing it within the lifestyle.


Mason: (09:52)

And so, the reason I really like your book is because for yourself, you can kind of like, I really relate to your position almost as like a lay person who just happens to be really interested in creating these reasonable grounded, "Hey, look at what's..." some anecdotal and then pretty good evidence based around medicinal mushrooms and hemp use in these instances. Now, let's not make any huge claims here because this is an unreasonable thing to do, but that doesn't mean we should be scared from going forth and seeing how we can help, how can we get support, especially in the light of chemotherapy and real hardcore therapy.


Mason: (10:35)

So, what was that experience for you when you were like, "All right, dad's got stage four pancreatic cancer." Very gnarly, right? A lot of emotions. You feel out of your depth, I imagine. I know I've felt that when my mum had her aneurysm and trying to like, "All right. Quickly, let's heal dead brain matter." It's like, it's overwhelming. And then you go forth and you go, "Well, I'm just going to find what's the most effective here." Can you take us through that journey because a lot of people would love to hear. What's going on for you mentally in finding your place in that process? Don't know if your dad was open to using these kinds of things in the beginning. Sharing that. Did you have your own inadequacies? Did you have your bubble burst when you thought you were going to do all the healing and then it didn't happen? What was that path?


Jenny Sansouci: (11:29)

That's a really good question. Yeah. I mean, the thing is when you get a diagnosis like that, or someone you love gets that kind of diagnosis, it's very hopeless at first and you feel very helpless because cancer, it just, it feels like it has a life of its own and it's unpredictable. Every cancer is different. Every person is different. You hear stories of things going well, you hear stories of things going bad. But with stage four pancreatic cancer in particular, when you Google that, it's a mistake. Googling it is a mistake, let's just say that. Nothing you find is good about stage four pancreatic cancer. And I wished I hadn't Googled it because it was like a punch in the gut as soon as I read it because when you start to see the statistics on it, it's pretty dire.


Jenny Sansouci: (12:13)

And so at first, I have a younger sister and my sister and I, we were all at the hospital when he got the diagnosis. She and I didn't want to have a breakdown in front of my dad because we didn't want to scare him even more. We went out to the parking garage and sat in the car and just cried and thought, it was Thanksgiving and we thought, we don't even know if we're going to be able to spend Christmas with dad. It's that kind of fast moving cancer. At first it was just extremely overwhelming. But after a couple of days of just feeling devastated and helpless, I started to feel very rebellious.


Jenny Sansouci: (12:58)

And that's kind of one of the reasons I have the Rebel's Apothecary as the name of the book. I mean, the rebel thing obviously comes from the hemp and the mushrooms and the kind of drug stigma. But also I feel very rebellious against the idea that things have to go the way the statistics say they're going to go. I felt very, I had this kind of strength that started to rise up inside me that was like, "No, there has to be something. There has to be something, you can't just surrender to this." My dad is like my hero. He's the best guy. I felt I have to try, I have to figure out something. I don't know what that is. I really thought it was going to go down the nutrition route, like I was going to totally radically change his diet.


Jenny Sansouci: (13:45)

And that's why it was interesting your question about like what did you think you were going to do versus what you did do. Because I thought it was going to be some like juice cleanse or something. I was going to get him on green juices only. Knowing my dad, it's hilarious that I even thought that I would be able to get him to do that. So I thought it was going to be a diet thing and I was like, I'm going to do everything I can to help. I know there are stories of people that beat this. I know there are those really small percentage of people that can beat this, and I was very fiercely wanting to have that be our... Which I'm sure everybody feels that way when they get cancer. But I felt it very, very strongly.


Jenny Sansouci: (14:27)

So I started calling around and I started calling the functional medicine doctor that I had worked for in New York City. I called David Avocado Wolfe, who I'm sure you're familiar with, a nutrition, super food expert. I called a bunch of other people that I had that I knew that might have some kind of tip to give me on whether it's immune system or cancer fighting or anything. I just kind of started gathering information and medicinal mushrooms came up from almost everybody that I asked. And I knew they would because I knew that medicinal mushrooms were very supportive for the immune system. That came up a few different times.


Jenny Sansouci: (15:11)

And then hemp came up very synchronistically in the sense that one of my friends recommended I look into extracts, and this was before extracts was having its big boom. It was kind of just this little whisper. And at the same time that I started looking into extracts, my dad had watched a documentary about medical hemp that he had just recorded because he thought it looked interesting, but it was all about cancer patients using hemp, a high potency cannabis oil in particular, to help with their cancer. And so, I didn't have to do any convincing on that end for him to be interested in that.


Jenny Sansouci: (15:48)

And as far as the diet stuff went, I went in and met with the nutritionist at the hospital and their recommendations. They had some great recommendations, I will say, but some of the things they were saying were kind of just eat whatever you want as long as you can get calories and eat those sugary protein drinks that are in bottles.


Mason: (16:10)

Feel free to rip into them. It's nothing personal. I mean, I've got nothing wrong with people who are working in hospital systems. I think they're doing incredible jobs and someone needs to do it. I'm talking to the position and that institutionalised response to nutrition that you're talking about. We've got dietitians mostly in those positions here and they're awful mouthpieces and I wish that they'd remember their own ability to critically think and not just be regurgitating the garbage that was stuffed down then by the robot lecturers at the university, because that's what it sounds like, and they're contributing to people getting very sick through following those guidelines.


Jenny Sansouci: (16:56)

Yeah. They're staying inside the system where they were taught and they're giving the recommendations based on what they were taught. And it is unfortunate they're taught a system of kind of this mindset that it doesn't really make that much of a difference what you eat as long as you're getting those calories in. I mean, you see it with the food at hospitals. It's terrible. So, I had those conversations with the nutritionist. The one thing I was really impressed by that they said was they told him to quit alcohol and sugar. I was totally on board with those two recommendations. So those were the things that... Well, they told him to cut down on sugar as much as possible. He quit drinking alcohol right away, which I was like, thank God, because I can't imagine the way that alcohol probably affects cancer cells.


Mason: (17:46)

Well, yeah I know, it is huge. And it's not like, it's like for one thing the carbohydrates, the second thing the amount of. We don't have to go into it. We know that kind of stress. Just even its existence during those times within the body. I'm not anti-alcohol in any way, I think most people know that by now. But yes, such a huge step people don't realise just how pivotal that is.


Jenny Sansouci: (18:08)

I kind of got this idea that I was going to cook all of his meals for him. I moved home to my parent's town when he first got sick and I moved into a condo nearby and I came over and I started making all of these different meals for him. But one of the things I learned really quickly was that when you're on chemotherapy, your appetite is really messed up and things that you would normally like you don't like, things tastes like cardboard that usually would taste delicious. You have a really weird taste in your mouth. You kind of have no appetite. So, I realised quickly that I had to sort of let him eat whatever he could eat and then I could just add extra things into his diet rather than policing every bite of food.


Jenny Sansouci: (18:50)

Some people when they have cancer, they're on chemo, they'll do a really strict... Like I know that if I got cancer, I would do a very strict diet. But my dad, I just kind of had to work with what would help him get food into his system so he wouldn't lose too much weight. With the diet stuff, we kind of settled on he eats regularly, but then we add a shake in every day. It's a green shake with a tonne of medicinal mushrooms in it. So as long as he has that every day, and then he's taking extra mushrooms and his hemp oil, I feel good about that. So, it was more about me just adding a bunch of things in for him rather than taking a bunch of things out.


Mason: (19:30)

I mean, quite often food wise, you get quite elated in the beginning, right? The feeling I'm going to cook every meal and it's going to be ideal and it's going to be perfect. I mean, we kind of forget you're going through something life changing, potentially life ending. It's existential. As you said, having a bit of a change and an alteration where you can start getting some things in is amazing. You kind of mentioned your dad already watched a documentary and so he'd opened that door. I think everyone, a lot of people can relate to like how are we going to open that door and how are we going to make this a smooth process so that it doesn't seem like what we're doing is medicating in just a different way because there's something wrong. Because that's so huge. And then you take out comfort foods, you do that whole thing. It makes it even more existential. It reinforces the stress factors that there's something wrong and bad going on.


Mason: (20:29)

There's times where I just, I think it's what I'm talking about is like just the quagmire that you can be in during those times. Sounds like what you guys did well is you found an approach that satiated, something that was driving, you obviously driving him and the rest of the family without adding in additional stresses. I think that's pretty huge. I think that's like... It is something just there that like it's a part of all the success stories. You just go as far as you go. Some people can go all the way and just all of a sudden they're juice fasting and they completely radically change their diet. And that's just not the case. That's like a small percentage of people that can handle that. So then you went for... sorry, if you want to speak to that, go for it.


Jenny Sansouci: (21:25)

Yeah. I think what has been key in that sense is exactly like you said, I don't want to drain him of his joy and his... the comforts and joys that he does have in his life while he's going through this process. So for me, I was like, I want you to add these things in and he was super open to it. But then also doing some of the things that he would normally do and then things that he would normally eat. And because he's been doing so well, we've just kind of kept on that plan. And as long as he has that shake everyday and he's good... I mean, he was so open to the mushrooms and the hemp. I was surprised about that because along the way I tried to get him to do different dietary changes or just change the kind of bread he's eating or little things like that, and he's kind of just brushed it off.


Jenny Sansouci: (22:17)

But with this, he was like, if there's one time to try new things and to just kind of take a leap of faith, it's now. It's when you have this kind of life changing diagnosis. So yeah, we went with it and we talked to his oncologist and we asked him we're going to get a medical marijuana card because at the time in Massachusetts you had to have a medical card in order to access it. And the oncologist said, "Listen, I can't tell you it's going to help, but I can't say that it's going to hurt. So go ahead and try it." And then I brought some... I do feel lucky in that sense because not everybody is like that.


Jenny Sansouci: (22:54)

And I brought some of the medicinal mushrooms into him as well and showed him the bottle of the supplements and he said, "I don't know, I don't know anything about this. If you want to try it, we'll just monitor his progress." And so that's what I always say to people when they're like, "How do you talk to your doctor about these things?" I tell them, "Ask your doctor if there's any specific reason why you shouldn't use these things that's really specific to you. Maybe there is a drug interaction. Maybe there is some other condition that you have where you shouldn't use these things. But if not, and they can't show you any studies or documentation as to why they're saying no, it's probably because they just don't know anything about it. And they just don't know enough to be able to officially say yes."


Jenny Sansouci: (23:37)

So I say, cancer patients are going from scan to scan. Usually it's like, my dad's is eight weeks between scans. And so I say, "Ask your doctor if you can try it for one round of scans and if things get better or not worse, maybe you can continue." Because it is hard to talk to doctors about that stuff.


Mason: (23:58)

Well, it's one of the biggest pieces of... it's an unspoken thing. It's an unspoken skill. It's an unspoken thing. What you've just put in there I think is, it's ethics. You've been talking about ethics. A lot of, unfortunately, not all. There's so many great doctors out there, but there's a percentage. I don't know if it's majority or not, but it depends on probably the area you're in, who, as you were saying, they don't give a good reason and yet they'll just say, "So just don't." And it's like, why? And it's like, "Well, I just don't want anything to mess with our treatment." And it's like, "No, but hang on. There's like this, every single one of your clients is a different case study and they have completely different lifestyles. There's an infinite different amount of variables and the only thing that's the same is your treatment.


Mason: (24:53)

It's unreasonable to say, oh, if we add in say something like hemp, especially in areas where it's legal, and I'm going to have to put that little one in there. And medicinal mushrooms, it's like, that's just one extra little variable in the infinite amount of different ones that there is." They don't tend to really care that much if people are drinking or not. It's a recommendation of smoking or smashing cheeseburgers. And no judgement to any of those things, but as you said, there's a certain educational process that can go for patients and patients' loved ones in how to converse and what basically your rights are as a patient. You said like, look, are they providing information?


Jenny Sansouci: (25:41)

And I think make sure you agree with their reasoning. If your doctor says something and you feel like that's not it, keep asking. That's one of the things that I did at every meeting. Like why, how are you measuring this? How are you measuring whether the treatments are successful? I want to know everything you're doing. And if they said no to any of the supplements, I would say, "Show me something that can tell me why you decided to say no to this." And if they can't, then I'll bring in my own research. And I printed out lots of different studies and articles and brought them into the oncologist showing, "Oh, look at this. This molecule inside hemp has been shown to potentially kill pancreatic cancer cells. I thought you might want to know about this."


Jenny Sansouci: (26:25)

So I'm constantly bringing in research to him because I don't know what kind of research he's doing on these things in his own time, if any. But I think it's really important for patients to do their own research, bring it into their doctor and have those conversations and really make sure everybody's in agreement on why you can or cannot use something.


Mason: (26:45)

I think what I'm sensing from you as well is you're not obnoxious about the process as well. I think it's like a defence mechanism. And I think for me if I was going through this, especially through maybe my mid 20s when I was kind of feeling a little bit jaded towards the medical system, and I had maybe a little bit more of a superiority complex about the diet and supplements that I was in, that would immediately cause friction between a patient and the doctor or patient's family and the doctor because you're coming in with an obnoxious twang... Well, I think it's an important thing that you're making distinct there is that there was a genuine conversation genuinely going, "Hey, what would you be concerned about? Is it blood thinning effects? What is it that we generally need to watch here?" Because you do have a particular expertise we're going to draw on, and then go and do your due diligence in finding data. And if there are interactions with particular drugs, there's elbow grease in there. And I think it's something that people can really take away from that.


Jenny Sansouci: (27:52)

Yeah. And one thing I like to tell people if they're curious, there's, and maybe you're familiar with this, but there's a website, the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre has a website where they list a bunch of different herbs and supplements and mushrooms and all the drug interactions. So you could literally go to their website and put Chaga into the search box and it will show you what are the known drug interactions and if there's any studies showing who should or should not use it. So that's a really good resource to just do your own self research before you speak to your doctor.


Mason: (28:24)

That is, it's just too easy. It's just too easy things there. It's still handed to us on a platter. So the response was, that was amazing. The response, towards the hemp especially, just primarily. So then how did you go about... You've got a medical card. It's a bit different here in Australia at the moment. We don't do med-


Jenny Sansouci: (28:49)

How is it working there now? What's the status?


Mason: (28:53)

I don't even know where the status is at. I mean, hemp seeds were finally made legal for human consumption like two years ago.


Jenny Sansouci: (29:03)

Hemp seeds?


Mason: (29:03)

Hemp seeds. And so, there's all this real grey legislative area. But, I mean, it's available. THC is a definite no, no. But yeah, it's kind of, it's a little bit... You're going to have to check with your local legislation where it's at with particular strains of extracts. But that's eased a lot, at least on that kind of the legislation side of things, but just no on THC.


Jenny Sansouci: (29:36)

I think it will continue to as more research is... As the legalisation opens up and there can be more research, I really do think that what they find will be beyond the shadow of a doubt that this plant is a medicinal herb. It'll be obvious.


Mason: (29:51)

And it's so obvious already. It's so unbelievably obvious.


Jenny Sansouci: (29:58)

Yeah, it's obvious to us but people need those clinical trials to make the research available to be opened up.


Mason: (30:08)

Yeah. And fair enough within a rigid medical system that they need though to follow that procedure. So how did you go about administering? Where did you go accessing? You said you went just to a local place?


Jenny Sansouci: (30:20)

Yeah. We had to go to a hemp doctor, which there are a lot of hemp doctors I had no idea. But in states where it's legal medically you can just look up, hemp doctor in my town. We found a doctor that would be willing to meet with him and could give him a medical card. We went in there, told the doctor he has pancreatic cancer. We brought his paperwork and everything, and of course he got approved. And then we went to a dispensary and the product that we got was the one that we had seen in this documentary, which is typically called Rick Simpson Oil, which is inspired by a guy named... You know about that?


Mason: (30:59)

Of course, yeah.


Jenny Sansouci: (31:01)

It's a highly, highly concentrated hemp oil. The Rick Simpson Oil, the guy, Rick Simpson, who this is inspired by, his is typically very high THC. But most of the medical hemp doctors I've spoken to always recommend a one to one ratio of compounds for medical conditions because the two molecules work better together, they boost each other up so you'll have a really nice balance of the compounds together in this oil. So my dad's using the one to one ratio. Very thick, oily substance. It's not something that you would use recreationally really. It's not really pleasant.


Jenny Sansouci: (31:42)

You eat it and it's very oily. But he puts it on a little bit of peanut butter and eats it twice a day, the size of a grain of rice. It's a tiny, tiny amount, but just that little drop can contain like 50 milligrams of THC and 50 milligram of xxx in that tiny drop, which for reference of people who aren't aware, five to 10 milligram of THC is a recreational getting high kind of dose. So 50 is a really huge amount. But you can work up to having a tolerance to it so it doesn't make you feel too intoxicated and you kind of get used to it after a little while. But that's the product that he uses every single day and has been for years now.


Mason: (32:26)

Nice. At this point with all the research you did originally and where you are now, having published the book, what continues to draw you back to hemp for your father in this instance?


Jenny Sansouci: (32:41)

Well, the thing that we realised right off the bat was his side effects from the chemotherapy. For the first couple of months before he got on the hemp, he was having nausea and no appetite. His side effects completely went away from starting on the hemp. He started sleeping well, his appetite came back, he was able to eat full meals again and gain the weight back that he was losing.


Mason: (33:06)

Right away?


Jenny Sansouci: (33:06)

And one of the things we noticed right off... Yeah, right away. Because, I mean, the THC is such an appetite stimulant that for people that have no appetite, when they're all of a sudden able to enjoy meals again, you know you can put that weight back on. I mean, the rapid weight loss is such a huge problem for so many cancer patients. So we saw that really quickly and ever since he started on the hemp, he's had no side effects. He's had barely any nausea, maybe like a couple of very small bouts of nausea, which is usually one of the most prevalent things that people experience on chemotherapy.


Jenny Sansouci: (33:42)

From the xxx, he started actually taking xxx before the medical card because we had access to xxx. And one of the things he noticed right off the bat is that his joint pain went away. He's been an athlete his whole life. He's had pain walking up and down the stairs and achy joints. And just from taking the xxx, he was probably taking 100 milligram of xxx a day, his joint pain went away. That was really interesting. He doesn't have to take Advil or those anti-inflammatory over-the-counter drugs anymore. He just does the xxx.


Jenny Sansouci: (34:17)

He's been on this the entire time and his scans have been stable. His blood work is in the normal range and he's been off of chemo now for months and we just keep kind of monitoring his progress. The tumours are still there, but they're stable. I asked the oncologist like, "How do you know if the tumours are dead cells or if they're still alive?" And he's like, "Good question." So we don't know. We don't know what's going on, but yeah-


Mason: (34:46)

I guess it's unlike that he'll be doing biopsy, right?


Jenny Sansouci: (34:49)

Yeah, exactly. I've heard stories of people with different kinds of cancer that once they go to get surgery to have the tumour removed, especially people that have been using this hemp, that it's just all dead cells. So you just really never know. So we just keep going and getting the blood work checked and getting the scans. And as long as he's stable, he's just off of chemo and just on the hemp and mushrooms now. I mean, he's a believer at this point.


Mason: (35:15)

That's so good. Well, there's another thing I found really approachable about what you just said. That's why I was really keen to chat with you because this is the bridging over how to make this accessible without having too much pressure on yourself. So, it's a different instance say of someone's going down the route of no chemo and radiotherapy and they're wanting to just treat themselves. At least in this instance we're not talking about that, but I don't know whether you've covered that or not from like in the book. If so, let's get to that. But in that instance, especially if it's a loved one who's a little bit like, "No, I want the chemo. I want to go down that route."


Mason: (35:52)

Using the mushrooms as well, and using the hemp in light of minimising the effects that the chemotherapy is going to have on you is a real, it takes the punch and it takes the pressure off sometimes if it's too much of a late for people to go, "I'm going to take hemp to cure my cancer. I'm going to take mushrooms to cure that." So that's a very heavy thing. Cure is a very heavy thing. As you said, you're still in an unknown place. And so, that kind of agenda to put onto a medicine is something that some people, again, can handle it. They've got that mindset that loves it. I'm not that kind of person. I liken it as too much colour and nuance in a conversation to use the word cures. I really like that. I really like that approach. And in the instance of chemo not being present, is that something you talk about much or cover much?


Jenny Sansouci: (36:50)

I don't cover in the book any recommendations of about not doing traditional cancer treatment because that's not the route that we went. I think there's plenty of people that have written books about what to do, like alternative ways to treat cancer. But I do think, I mean, if someone does choose to not get the chemotherapy or the radiation, I do think that both hemp and mushrooms can be highly, highly supportive on that journey no matter what. I mean, I'm a big believer now. I mean, with the hemp and mushrooms the way I see it is the mushrooms, as you know, are so supportive to the immune system.


Jenny Sansouci: (37:29)

And so, to be able to keep your immune system strong regardless if you're on chemotherapy or not I think is hugely important. And the hemp, not only with the chemotherapy side effects, but you just think about the anxiety and the lack of sleep that comes along with having cancer, going through an illness like this. Even if you're not going through chemotherapy, you're probably feeling a lot of existential questioning and you're probably feeling anxiety. You may be feeling pain. You may be, you're not sleeping well. So the hemp can really be helpful for those things. I mean, I think for anybody, it could be a potential supporter for sure.


Mason: (38:08)

No brainer. It's an absolute no brainer. The mushroom start rolling into the picture. As you said, it's a very, it's obvious. When your immune system's compromised, it's such an obvious thing. Hemp, yes, we know the endocannabinoid system exists and we know that it has a huge modulating effect for many of the functions within our body. The mushrooms though are like full power immunity there. You can't go past them. As you said, everyone mention them in terms of a treatment protocol. You'd been kind of delving a little bit here and there into mushrooms, but I want to hear about it for yourself. Did you start really diving into your own medicinal mushroom usage at that point as well and sparking a love affair?


Jenny Sansouci: (39:05)

Yeah, I did. I did. And that's kind of what the whole book is encompassing is two different audiences, I guess, of readers. Like it's the people that are maybe struggling with cancer and their caregivers, but then I have all these sections about different kind of general wellness topics that I got really excited about for myself. And especially going through a period of time taking care of a loved one with cancer, it was really important to me to keep my immune system strong, to keep my anxiety in check. I was losing sleep because I was nervous about all of this. So, I learned a lot with myself with xxx in particular, and then with the different medicinal mushrooms.


Jenny Sansouci: (39:52)

I started using them for lots of different things, taking lion's mane and cordyceps for sure during the day a lot of times when I needed to kind of have that energy that we spent so many long days at the hospital during those first chemotherapy treatments. So I was always putting cordyceps and lion's mane in my tea because I was sitting there doing all this research. So I was kind of like, "All right, let me get the lion's mane. Let me get my brain working so I can do this research." And then I was taking chaga basically as an every day tonic just to... I mean, I think personally, I don't know what your opinion is on this, but I'm sure you'd probably agree. Chaga for me just feels like this really grounding everyday sort of hug, like just kind of a-


Mason: (40:42)

Yeah, a grandfatherly hug.


Jenny Sansouci: (40:43)

It makes me feel safe. It makes me feel like I'm being taken care of.


Mason: (40:47)

Yeah. 100% agree.


Jenny Sansouci: (40:50)

Yeah. Chaga became kind of one of my everyday ones. And then reishi I would take, in the evening I would drink the teas in the evening. And yeah, I just started to kind of incorporate them into this ecosystem of my everyday life along with the xxx. And so, yeah, I wrote a lot about that in the book. But I definitely started my own little love affair with mushrooms. And then with my dad, I mean, the thing that I think is really important about mushrooms and chemotherapy in particular is, so many people can't tolerate very many rounds of chemotherapy and a lot of people end up in really bad condition just because of the chemotherapy drugs and they can't go on because of that.


Jenny Sansouci: (41:39)

My dad went, he had over 50 rounds of this really, really strong chemotherapy and his doctor said most people only can tolerate eight to 10 rounds. And I think that's because of the mushrooms. It has been shown that these different medicinal mushrooms can keep the immune system strong during chemotherapy and help the chemotherapy actually work better and help your body not break down during the process. And I really think that's why he's been able to tolerate that much.


Mason: (42:08)

I mean, and again, that's a science in China to use medicinal mushrooms in conjunction. I think it's called, I haven't looked at it for awhile, fuzeng therapy. Z-H-E-N-G if anyone would like looking it up. And it's precisely as you just said. People say patients will die of the chemotherapy. And that's, I always say that's true to an extent but it's like, well no, they're not dying of the chemotherapy. They're dying because their immune system has been completely wiped out. There are emaciated and there's been no convalescence stage for healing. They haven't actually been able to build strength. And so, it's kind of disempowering to think that everyone is just going to die of the chemotherapy where this perfect example is like, is it ideal? That's up for debate? Is it a reality for some people on their journey? Yes. We're talking about that kind of pathway.


Mason: (43:14)

Right now it's like Tamara, who I've just went and got my breakfast off and my hot chocolate from at the branches. She had non-Hodgkin's and decided for her going through chemo is the best and she megadosed medicinal mushrooms and she got, had her own version of the oils and things like that going on. And she just completely supported herself and the oncologist is like, "Oh my gosh. Wow. You came out of it really well." As you're saying, like 50 rounds for your dad. "Oh my gosh. How are... Normally people go eight or 10." Because there's been some very legitimate support of the body going on. So, how did you find... Did you just find on PubMed for yourself the research on chemotherapy and particular mushrooms. Was that what draw you to them mostly or was it looking for studies around mushrooms and pancreatic cancer? What was the big... How did you balance out between those two draws and intentions?


Jenny Sansouci: (44:18)

Yeah, that's a great question. Well, the first two mushrooms that I heard about that were actually recommended to me by different people to look into were turkey tail and shiitake. Actually I'm curious at what you think about AHCC because that's made from shiitake mycelium. I know you're a big proponent of fruiting bodies. But the AHCC supplements that are derived from shiitake mycelium are used in cancer hospitals all over China and Japan in conjunction with chemotherapy to keep the immune system strong. So I know there's all this talk of fruiting bodies being superior to mycelium. And that's, I know there's a lot of research that shows up, but those supplements in particular, there are studies that show that they can help to boost the immune system with chemotherapy patients. So that was one of the first things that I found.


Mason: (45:08)

Yeah. So my opinion on that is, and I love the question, is there's this huge mushroom industry and these different ways of growing mushrooms and you're growing either on grain or substrates or chips or eventually you get to growing on log woods where you can access the mycelium. For everyone, the mycelium again, just a little reminder, that's the, it's like the body of the mushrooms. If you're growing on something like rice or oats, then the mushroom body grows through them. Normally it's going to be going through wood. You can't access. But at the end, the fruiting body comes about and you can get rid of the rice or the oat and you can get access to that body.


Mason: (45:47)

Now, there's a bunch of research around nutritive anti-cancer, anti many things going into certain substances within the mycelium. Now, because I'm quite adamant about the fact that I'm not a practitioner based company and I'm not producing a product for someone within a clinical setting, that's just not what I do. What I do is kind of like intention based, longevity based, growing on what is closest to nature as possible. Now, if the medical system turned around and said, "Hey, we need to provide 3 million people with reishi mushroom." I'm going to be like, "Cool. I'm not your guy. I can't provide you that."


Mason: (46:32)

But all those people who, like in my instance, I'd consider a reishi to be kind of like a subpar reishi for my intention going forth. All of a sudden, that's not a subpar reishi to meet that demand for the people that are in a clinical setting that need reishi. And then potentially from the shiitake perspective, I'm like, yeah, go nuts. That's where super critical extracts, finding particular beta-glucans and compounds because practitioners need that, especially if you're in a Western reductionist model and you're going after particular receptor sites. I think that's really super valid and that's where it differentiates from what I do because I'm not advocating for a practitioner to use our mushrooms in various specific anti-cancer protocols.


Jenny Sansouci: (47:20)

Right. Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. So yeah, the AHCC from shiitake was the first one. And I did find the research to go along with that, there has been studies. There are a lot of large scale studies with medicinal mushrooms in cancer. There's a couple, there's one with the turkey tail and with the AHCC in particular. But there are a lot of other smaller kind of preclinical studies with cancer cells in dishes with chaga and reishi and cordyceps and lion's, all of them actually. All the medicinal mushrooms. Well, most of them at least have some evidence of being helpful with the immune system and cancer. So turkey tail and AHCC were the first two that he got started on. And then I... So he's kind of on a blend of some mycelium-based products and some fruiting body based products. He takes the SuperFeast Turkey Tail every day actually. My mum puts it in his green shake every day.


Jenny Sansouci: (48:16)

So we've got a little scoop of turkey tail going on. And then one of the other ones that he got started on kind of a few months into his treatment was the lion's mane because he was experiencing neuropathy, which is the loss of sensation and tingling in the fingers and toes. That happens a lot for chemotherapy patients. I had been doing some research into lion's mane and the neuro-regenerative properties of it and I asked my dad, "Would you be willing to put another mushroom in here and see what happens?" He said yes. Within two weeks he was able to tell such a difference. He was able to button his buttons again. He was able to feel his contact lens on the end of his finger again. He said he was able to reach into his pocket and feel the difference between a dime a quarter, which he hadn't been able to before. So the lion's mane has been super, super helpful for him for that.


Mason: (49:10)

It often comes in the back end of one of these treatment protocols. Like just the nervous system cops so much, and then there are those kinds of... It's so, I mean, lion's mane has got its own immunological aspects going on and its own anti-inflammatory things going on within the GI tract and along the epithelial cells. It's worth just for that factor. But it's not necessarily a huge immune hit up like you're going to see shiitake and turkey tail and Chaga and Reishi B. But it's interesting, here it is again, how often it kind of slots into the back end of a treatment protocol just to stop any neurological degeneration or anything that... It's a holistic approach and what you're kind of talking about is just like keeping a finger on the pulse.


Mason: (49:56)

You need someone in the household or yourself, but your dad's kind of creeping into this world. Obviously you're there, the rest of the family is there keeping a finger on the pulse, just judging the situation. It's amazing how scared people are to... That's Goji in the background, everyone. It's amazing how scared people are to keep the finger on the pulse because, well, I'm not a doctor and I can't do this and I'm not trained. It's like, no, you're not a doctor. And that's the whole point. You can provide a level of nuanced care and even if that is then feeding what you're noticing and what's possible, getting your spidey sense up and feeding that to your practitioners so that they can stay onto it. But making sure that that's not just going to mean more medications, that would be nice. Something I'd like to-


Jenny Sansouci: (50:49)

Sorry, just to add one thing to what you said before about PubMed, that was, I spent so much time on PubMed, yes, and I found so much interesting information on mushrooms and so many really small studies that seemed so promising that there just hasn't been the funding to take them into a larger place. I emailed one of mycologist’s that I, Solomon Wasser, who maybe you're familiar with. He heads up the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms. I emailed him because he had done a small study on a Bird's Nest fungi with pancreatic cancer. It's this really obscure little mushroom.


Jenny Sansouci: (51:30)

It was really promising and I was like, "Has there been any followup to this?" And he's like, "We have no funding for this. If we had funding for this, we'd be able to potentially come out with a drug for pancreatic cancer, but we don't." And I was like, "Oh God." That's just the problem across the board, right? There's no large scale funding for these studies. And I really, I want there to be it. I hope to be able to support that funding in some way. I just, I think that it would be a game if we could actually have these studies that doctors would pay attention to.


Mason: (52:03)

Yeah. And again, it's our whole model. Unfortunately not to just ring it again, ring the bell again, but they're not getting paid when people get well. They're getting paid exceptional amounts when people stay sick. When you take a beta-glucan from a mushroom, it's very, very hard to patent it. I mean, the super critical extracts from chaga that have been used since the 50s, I don't even know if they're patented. It's a particular product taking a particular melanin based compound mostly from the chaga and perhaps they've been able to patent the extraction model and the machinery that's used to extract it. But nonetheless, there's nothing to stop another company coming over and saying, "Great, we'll do an extraction of chaga and we can provide data and it can be used clinically as well." Therefore, pharmaceutically it's not going to be valid.


Mason: (53:07)

That's something interesting because we're in the Western model. Whether we like it or not, most of the time family members are going to end up in that model. And so, you had a real nice grounded approach because I've been in medicinal mushrooms for over 10 years and I don't like medicinal mushrooms being used as examples for treatment to cancer in terms of like, don't you know they cure it? I'm just like, that's a really unreasonable thing to say and here's why. Cancer is a Western terminology. It's a symptom-based terminology. It's a term. In China, or if you go pre-Mao, Mao Zedong pre-communism, when you're actually have classical Chinese medicine not the traditional Chinese medicine that Mao Zedong created when there's an amalgamation of Western symptomology and label-based disease mixed with a little bit of nice or a bit of a meridians and a little bit of acupuncture here and there. But they're treating things in the West, which don't exist.


Mason: (54:08)

The word cancer doesn't exist. There's no cancer in classical Chinese medicine. There's the treatment of the body through the Yin Yang and the Five Elements. And so, we are looking at a new type of medicine and we're using traditional herbs that don't have 3000 years, at least, of clinical usage for cancer. They have 3000 years of clinical usage for various dysfunctions of Qi, for rebellious qi and deficiencies of Qi, blockages, so on and so forth. And so, we can't just jump at these small studies, as you're saying, which is the backbone of modern medicine, because we're playing that game.


Mason: (54:53)

You need something to be comprehensively proven, large scale in vivo study. And we don't have that yet. So just, we know that it's great for the immune system, stick to the guns of what's reasonable. Don't make outlandish claims despite the fact that anecdotally it's looking really good. And I'm just talking about that in the context of, if you are really entrenched within the Western model and the Western cancer model. It's just, just watch your approach. Watch your approach because we need to play the game and stay reasonable. But then I feel you take that approach, you can go full power. So what kind of dosages were you getting your dad onto?


Jenny Sansouci: (55:40)

Oh, what kind of dosages? He's definitely taking a smaller dosage than some of the studies suggest. I think some, like with the turkey's tail studies that have been out there, I think it's like six grams that people have taken for breast cancer. He's probably taking two grams a day of turkey tail. Probably three gram a day of the shiitake, the AHCC. And then he takes a blend of a bunch of different other mushrooms. It's probably maybe a gram of each one, maybe one and a half gram of each. It's a pretty low dose. It's kind of like a wellness dose. Honestly, he could be taking higher doses for sure. But he's been doing so well that we're like, all right, we'll just keep it how it is.


Mason: (56:28)

And he's been doing it consistently, right?


Jenny Sansouci: (56:31)

Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yep. Morning and night, yeah.


Mason: (56:35)

Well, I mean, that's pretty... Just that's rad just there, the consistency factor versus the go hard for two or three months and then get annoyed when it hasn't healed everything. That's, it's definitely where it's at. And he's just doing that in his shakes?


Jenny Sansouci: (56:54)

Yeah. Well, he's got some capsules that he takes, like the AHCC is capsules, the lion's mane he takes is in capsules. And then all the other mushrooms, the turkey tail and then the blend of 10 different mushrooms, that's in powder and in shakes. Yeah. So he kind of doesn't even know every single thing he's taking. I know everything he's taking, but he's just drinking the shake down every single day and it's doing something.


Mason: (57:21)

So there's obviously that journey, whether you are attributing the current success completely one way or the other seems like you're just going, "Look, this is what we did. Seemed pretty useful. They seem to have some pretty visceral effects." This is anecdotal, but nonetheless, this is what happened. We introduced them, this was the good results. So sharing that information out. So tell us, where is he at now? When did things kind of really start to turn for him? Was it after those 50 rounds of chemo when we're just going to go, all right, let's see how it all went.


Jenny Sansouci: (58:00)

Yeah, it was actually... It was 2017 he was diagnosed and it was this January/February that they said, "You've been really stable and your blood work has been in the normal range." For pancreatic cancer, there's a blood marker. It's called CA 19-9. And normal range is between 0 and 37, meaning there's no activity coming out of the tumour, there's no proteins being released. And his has been around 18 for over a year and a half probably. It started at like 18, 10. Some people start way higher than that, like thousands and thousands. He's been in the normal range and kind of the low normal range for quite a while. And they said, "Things have just been so stable. Why don't we just try to get you off of chemo just to give your body a break?"


Jenny Sansouci: (58:52)

That was February. And now it's May, and he's just feeling really good, especially off the chemo. He has so much more energy. So he's doing yard work and doing all these different projects and he's in a great mood all the time and he doesn't have to go into the hospital and he feels really good. And he's still not having any pain or any indication that the cancer is causing any type of side effects or uncomfortability. He's good. So where he's at now is he's just going to get another scan in a month or so. And if things are still stable or better, he's going to stay off the chemo. But he'll stay on the hemp and mushrooms like for life probably.


Mason: (59:36)

In the foreseeable future. Well, and that's where, I guess, like where he can make those adjustments after a few years to be like, all right, do we stay in? And most likely you will. You just don't muck around. I definitely don't have any recommendations. Which then you go like, he'd be like, "Oh, I don't feel like medicating. That was something I was doing when I was in that kind of stage." Maybe you go for a more, a whole kind of shiitake kind of vibe rather than like a superficial extract. But potentially, but just like so if people were wondering where that conversation comes up because sometimes the biggest thing is letting go of what was healing us or a dose of what was healing us when things were bad and slowly just opening up to adjusting as we go along. I don't know if that comes up at all in the conversation, but you're still obviously still in it waiting for the test to come back. But I was curious, what was the prognosis in the beginning?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:00:37)

In the beginning? Oh, they didn't tell us, they told him stage four pancreatic cancer that has spread to the liver, but they didn't give us like here's how many months you have to live or anything like that. But when you look it up, sometimes eight weeks is what people have. And usually it's just a few months is the usual prognosis for that. If they told him that prognosis, he didn't tell me and I wouldn't have wanted to hear it because I'd be like, no, I'm rebelling against that. But it's, yeah, it's usually pretty quick moving aggressive cancer typically.


Mason: (01:01:25)

Is there anything else in the book that we didn't really cover here that you just want to give people a little snippet into, any little interesting parts along the journey? Anything interesting in the mushroom or hemp world?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:01:42)

Well, I guess, I mean, the thing that I'm most proud of in the book is that, kind of like we were talking about at the beginning of this podcast is I learned from so many different experts and I've really showcased all of their work throughout the book. So there's a few different hemp doctors and hemp experts that have been in this field for a long time that I went and interviewed and met in person and kind of got some of their protocols, especially with dosing. There's a lot of dosage recommendations throughout the book and it's all from hemp doctors, some really amazing people. I went to a medical hemp conference and I went to some medicinal mushroom seminars and I went on a bunch of mushroom walks.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:02:24)

I have all these mushroom mentors and hemp mentors that I was able to take all of their amazing work and just infuse it throughout the pages of the book. So, I'm really proud of that and I'm excited to kind of share those people's wisdom. I always say my favourite parts of the book are the acknowledgement section and the research citations because so many other people went into the making of this book, not just me. I think, yeah, I'm just, I'm excited that there's all the people that were on the scientific studies. The people's names that I kept seeing, those were the people who I reached out to for specifics and for fact checking. I had a bunch of them fact check the book. So I just feel really proud of that. Certainly there's a lot of science and stuff.


Mason: (01:03:09)

Oh, good on you because that's often like that last little 5% that takes, you've gone back to the source and often that last little 5% to be like, let's just make sure everything is actually like... Just seeing them on the harp of truth.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:03:25)

Yeah. I thought like, who are the people that if they read the book and said it was inaccurate, I would be horrified by that. Who are those people? And let me get them to fact check the book. So that's what I did.


Mason: (01:03:38)

Yeah. I really like that approach. This is what I think the problem is with influencer culture and entrepreneurial culture where everyone goes like, you know what, just screw what anyone thinks, just put it out there and just speak your truth. Just don't let... And so all of a sudden you get this aversion to criticism when really all you need to do is find an appropriate place. Because there isn't an inner critic for no reason. You're not aware of outer criticism for no reason, it's because when it's not excessive, it has this beautiful contributory factor and...


Mason: (01:04:14)

You went, it was a good example. I think when people are writing books, go and look for the criticism to make sure that you're not just putting out shit work. It's like, it's super obvious. I kind of got that. It's like, I kind of got that about my own work as well. I sit there and when I was like, the best example when I was a raw foodist. I'd read Western Price books and argue all the points of my diet to myself. And I do that today. I sit in a position and I can... You're morphed into the position of someone who would be like, I don't know, a sceptic or something. How would they approach the way I've done my work and how can I plug it up to make sure it has full integrity.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:04:58)

Yeah. That's why I wanted to go directly to the source. I didn't want to just be quoting hemp influencers in my book. That's not where I was finding my information. I was like, I want to go to the people who were involved in this research study because that's the source, that's the source of so much of this, and the doctors who are working with patients and seeing the results. You're not just someone who might own a xxx company and has beautiful labelling and... It makes a big difference when it's people who are really out there seeing how patients are being affected.


Mason: (01:05:33)

Yeah. Going to the source, people don't do it enough. People take everything at face value.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:05:37)

I mean, it's so easy to find the science, it's there. It's just maybe not as pretty as looking at someone's gorgeous little blog, but it's there.


Mason: (01:05:48)

Just to finish it up, do you cover psilocybin, magic mushrooms at all?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:05:55)

I do. Yeah, I do. I felt that I needed to. I mean, for me I covered it because I started to become very interested in it. Of course it's illegal and I don't recommend that anybody just experiment on their own, but people will and I have. There's a tonne of amazing research going into it right now, as I'm sure you know about. So I do cover some of the research, especially with treatment-resistant depression which I think is really, really, really interesting and promising. And there's some very interesting doctors and scientists looking into that. So, I think it's important for people to know about the changes that could be happening in mental health with psilocybin.


Mason: (01:06:40)

What was the most exciting thing that you came across in that research?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:06:44)

I guess the most exciting thing, I mean, one of the really interesting things, I came across a study at Johns Hopkins by Dr. Roland Griffiths who was using psilocybin for cancer patients to help alleviate their fear of death and their anxiety about the whole cancer process and the prospect of dying. And I think that's really, really interesting and I think that's an area that kind of gets overlooked, especially in the Western medical system, is the whole spiritual and emotional aspect of going through something like cancer treatment.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:07:21)

It can be very difficult emotionally. So to see that there has been so much success in people using psilocybin and having that fear of death alleviated, I think that's really, really important. Something that's interesting to me also that's happening right now at Imperial College, London, is they're doing a study, I believe it's going on currently, comparing SSRI antidepressant drugs to psilocybin and seeing what the comparison is there. And I think that could be some really interesting research. I think it's really promising for depression.


Mason: (01:07:55)

Oh, huge. Let's just, gosh, can you imagine. A couple of decades from now, head screws on to this medical system, it's not just a profit model. You can start integrating these things like hemp, medicinal mushrooms, psilocybin. It makes sense. Just everyone's just... Everyone's-


Jenny Sansouci: (01:08:15)

It's all out there on the earth. The earth provides us so much and I think that's one of the most important things to realise is we have this vast, amazing planet that's provided us with so many things that we need for different ailments, different human ailments of the human condition. And I think it's exciting to have some of those things being brought to the forefront and elevated again.


Mason: (01:08:41)

Absolutely. I mean, you're doing your part, the Rebel's Apothecary. I'm really looking forward to my copy arriving.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:08:48)

It'll get there on a boat.


Mason: (01:08:49)

I'll get in touch, it's arriving on a boat, it's old school. I like that. It's like it's very folky. I got the free chapter though. So everyone can go, I think it's is the place you can go over and just get the information, go and get yourself a free chapter. I believe that's where they can access that as well.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:09:15)

The free chapter, you can get through my Instagram, through the link in my Instagram bio. is where you can go to pre-order the book. Although the free chapter is on my blog too, which is


Mason: (01:09:30)

Oh yeah. I was looking at Healthy Crush before we came on. Been doing that for a while, right?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:09:34)

Yeah. Quite a long time now. Mm-hmm (affirmative).


Mason: (01:09:37)

Since like, what? Over 10 years?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:09:39)

Yeah. I started blogging around 2008 and Healthy Crush started around 2011. But yeah, it's been a journey. That was back in the day where there were not a lot of blogs back then.


Mason: (01:09:52)

No, [inaudible 01:09:53]. Yeah. That's definitely a-


Jenny Sansouci: (01:09:56)

There were no influencers.


Mason: (01:09:58)

No influences, yeah. I mean, it's like... Yeah, that's a good archive. Do you ever have a little bit of laugh to yourself going back over like 12 years worth of blogs?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:10:06)

Yeah. People were like, how did you spread the word about your blog posts when there was no Instagram? I was like, there were only five blogs total, so I showed up really high in the search engines. That's basically it.


Mason: (01:10:22)

It's so good. Can you just remind everyone what your Instagram is so they can go over and give you a follow?


Jenny Sansouci: (01:10:27)

Yeah, sure. It's Jenny Sansouci, my name. J-E-N-N-Y S-A-N-S-O-U-C-I.


Mason: (01:10:34)

It's way too easy. Go and get the book guys, be a rebel. We were talking, just saying then how it's going to be nice in the next couple of decades to see these really integrated. But it's not where it starts. It starts in your own home, apothecary. And so, just to leave everyone here, can you just share with us what apothecary in the modern world means to you and what you hope for people's home apothecary through reading this book.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:11:02)

So good. Well, I think when you think of apothecaries, you think of these little medicine bottles all being lined up, you think of the image of the apothecary, but I think it's so much more than that. And I think it's about really creating, like infusing these different herbs and natural medicines into every aspect of your day, whether it's in your cooking or in your teas or in your topical solutions that you're putting on top of your body or taking things as a tincture, but it's everything. So, I really have created a little kind of ecosystem apothecary that encompasses so many different practises. And it's also not just about supplements and herbs, it's about your lifestyle practises and breathing and moving your body and the way you're thinking and your nervous system and just setting up your environment so it supports you. I think that's really the essence of it.


Mason: (01:12:01)

So good. Thanks so much for coming on. Have a great time continuing to launch the book in this weird, slow style of launch where you don't have any of the... You're over there in New York not able to, as you said before we jumped on, not doing the book signings, not doing the big events. It's like the good old days when you started the blog right. I mean, [crosstalk 01:12:27]. It's got to be more reach.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:12:31)

Yeah. I mean, this is... thanks so much for having me. This has been such a cool conversation and I do mention SuperFeast a few times throughout the book as a brand that I love. So I really support you guys and look forward to continuing to support you.


Mason: (01:12:44)

Thanks for that. It was such a nice surprise to hear that as well. It's like we appreciate it and we'll-


Jenny Sansouci: (01:12:50)

Yeah. I mean, where I find... I mean, your podcast is where I find people that I can see are kindred spirits and are really doing the work and putting out really quality products, I'm thrilled to share about it.


Mason: (01:13:02)

Thanks legend. Everyone go over and get that book. It really is, just through the conversations with Jenny that I've had and just having looked at the chapter and everything that's in there, it's a really good one to have around in your own library and especially a good one to be able to hand to people that are going through something similar. It's a good gifting one, so maybe just get ready to gift that to people or just keep one and hand yourself. Thanks so much.


Jenny Sansouci: (01:13:28)

Thank you.


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The Power Of Menopause with Jane Hardwicke Collings (EP#77)