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Let's Gut Real - Easy to Digest Nutrition Science

Making nutrition science accessible and easy-to-digest. Andrea Hardy, Canada’s Gut Health Dietitian, is on a mission to connect people to credible, up-to-date nutrition information about gut health and digestive disorders. Nutrition misinformation is rampant. If nutrition advice online scares you, it’s probably not true. Let’s Gut Real is all taking the fear out of nutrition messaging, cultivating critical thinking, and helping you understand nutrition science. Andrea talks with guests about digestive health, the gut microbiome, hot nutrition topics, and nutrition misinformation, sharing messages that are easy to consume and that inspire sustainable action. Andrea likes to say her goal is to get people to take nutrition a little less seriously – which may come as a surprise coming from a dietitian. Through humour, she injects fun into her science-based media messages. After all, poop jokes aren’t her favourite kinda jokes, but they are a solid #2.

Apr 11, 2023

Pain is a predominant feature in the majority of functional gut disorders. The higher risk of anxiety and depression when coping with any chronic illness, including GI disorders, as well as anxiety and depression impacting symptoms and symptom perception in many GI conditions are all very important aspect of medical care.

This week I interview Dr. Katia Tonkin on the role that cannabis plays in medical care – including in the treatment of anxiety, depression, and pain.

Dr. Tonkin is a medical oncologist who worked at The Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton Alberta Canada for 20 years and in London, Ontario Canada for 6 years prior to that. She became interested in medical cannabis in 2016 as many patients started asking about cannabis. After researching into it, Dr. Tonkin felt cannabis was likely to help many patients with a wide variety of problems. She started treating patients in April 2017 and wants to contribute to clinical research to further medical knowledge into appropriate uses of medical cannabis, as well as educating health care providers on the proper use of cannabis. She works out of Optimum Wellness Center as well as other clinics as a medical prescriber.

We talk about:

  • Tonkin’s background as a clinician and how they became interested in the role cannabis plays in medical care.
  • What cannabis is.
  • The components of the plant that have therapeutic impacts.
  • The role of a medical prescriber.
  • How cannabis, that is medically prescribed, differs from cannabis you might find in stores and why ’self medicating’ is not the best strategy to realize the benefits of cannabis
  • The conditions we have evidence for using cannabis with (including anxiety, depression and pain)
  • How these overlaps with gastrointestinal disorders.
  • How to find a medical prescriber.

Connect with Dr. Katia Tonkin at Optimum Wellness Centres in Edmonton, Alberta.