One question I am constantly asked is: “How did you go from being a marketing director for Harley-Davidson to formulating herbal supplements?”
It’s a long story, but here’s a little look into how passionate, tenacious research can hit you with an entrepreneurial idea out of nowhere…
It first began when both myself and my boyfriend at the time became obsessed with healing our bodies naturally and embarked on a mission to attain the best health ever. He had been diagnosed with MS, and I suffered from severe gastrointestinal issues. We became obsessed with healthy eating, juicing, fasting, and supplementing with high quality vitamins and herbs.
One of the first things we decided to do together was to remove the mercury fillings in our teeth. We were both children of the ’80s, back when most dentists were still using amalgram fillings. Amalgram was an alloy made from mercury and other metals to fill cavities in teeth.
We were both wanting to do a heavy metal cleanse to remove any excessive amounts of metals that might be looming in our bodies, but it felt counterproductive to embark on a grueling heavy metal cleanse while we still had it embedded in our mouths!
The craziest thing about amalgram fillings is that mercury is continuously emitted from the fillings and absorbed and retained in the body. The output of mercury is intensified the more fillings you have, and also by chewing, grinding your teeth, and the consumption of hot foods and beverages.
Think about that for a moment: mercury, a known (and now proven)* neurotoxin, slowly being emitted into your mouth and gums, the area right in front of your brain, the mothership of your entire nervous system!
We both found a specialist to remove our fillings and replace them with safer composite fillings. This is not an easy procedure to do since you could actually get more dangerous exposure to mercury if your fillings aren’t removed properly. The vapor emitted from drilling into the mercury to remove it is highly toxic and can cause more damage than leaving the fillings intact, which is why it is imperative to find a holistic dentist who specializes in mercury removal. He or she will use a secured dental dam and remove fillings in a hyper-controlled environment keeping the vapor and fumes from being exposed to the patient and the doctor as well.
After having our fillings removed, we decided it was time to do a heavy metal cleanse together. It involved a rigorous 12-day regimen filled with organic green juice (romaine, spinach, parsley, green apple, and cilantro), chlorella tablets, dandelion root, and activated charcoal. We kept our food intake light and drank tons of water.
We also received colonic irrigation, mainly after researching how mercury and other heavy metals like to sit in your gut. By visiting a colonic specialist, we were able to cleanse out our entire intestinal system. I highly recommend organic coffee colonics if you can find someone in your area to perform one since the coffee helps to purge the liver of any excess toxins as well. A really good colonic practitioner will also do a probiotic infusion after performing the colonic.
Even so, it is still very important to make sure you supplement with high doses of probiotics after having a colonic since it will also clear out all the good gut bacteria that you have living inside of your intestines. Having a large amount of this “good” bacteria is vital for digestion, assimilation, and also supporting your immune system.
Many years later I learned about the importance of glutathione in heavy metal detoxification, so I feel the need to mention it here. Glutathione is a blend of amino acids and is an incredibly potent antioxidant and detoxifier. Glutathione is present in every human cell, but most people are deficient in this essential nutrient due to increased exposure to harmful toxins.
Glutathione is best administered intravenously since most oral glutathione supplements do not work. Unless it’s nanoliposomal, it will simply break down during the digestion process. If you can find a nanoliposomal glutathione supplement that can be absorbed under the tongue, it should work well and will be a lot less expensive than an IV glutathione.
After removing our fillings and performing a series of heavy metal detoxification protocols, we both felt like our health had hit an all-time high. We had boundless energy and seemed to have mental clarity like never before.
This ignited within us even more zealous passion to continue our quest for natural ways to heal and support our bodies. I became obsessed with reading books about herbs and nutrients and would spend hours preparing herbal formulas and superfood recipes. I also made sure that the ingredients we used were super high-quality, organic, and pure. After all, we hadn’t gone through all the above to simply add those harmful toxins back into our diet!
My favorite concoction ever was a very special superfood shake we would regularly prepare in the blender. It consisted of several powerful superfoods such as cacao, maca, ginseng powder, Epimedium extract (aka “horny goat weed”), cinnamon, raw honey, and more. We would also top it off with a generous pinch of cayenne powder.
Cayenne has an overall stimulant effect on the body. It supports circulation, enhances digestion, and improves absorption of any herbs taken along with it, therefore increasing efficacy of virtually any herbal combination. After learning this, I started adding organic cayenne powder to our daily superfood shakes and noticed a powerful increase in the benefits of our formulations.
Outside of simply being a catalyst to other herbs, I soon learned that cayenne has a magnitude of health benefits on its own. It has the powerful ability to increase circulation and dilate blood vessels to stimulate and energize the nervous system. It has a warming effect in the body and can actually lower blood pressure. Cayenne is also known to be a powerful antioxidant and helps protect cells against free radical damage. It also has a chemical effect on the brain and upon consumption, helps to release endorphins, and can create an effect similar to “runner’s high.”**
I started to wonder why more natural supplements didn’t contain cayenne since it would increase the effects of other herbs so significantly. I also wondered why there weren’t any mainstream companies at that time selling herbal formulas that were certified organic and free from heavy metals. I got to where I started making all of my own formulas since I didn’t trust many pre-packaged herbal products after all the research I had done.
Back to my favorite superfood concoction mentioned above, whenever we added this particular formulation to our regimen, we would both notice an almost instantaneous increase in sexual desire. It was a truly phenomenal side effect that I remember vividly happening to my body.
When I told my friends about this, they were insistent on trying this concoction out themselves and every single one of them, (men and women), experienced similar potent effects.
“Hey, Julie, can you make me one of your Horny Shakes?” my friends would jokingly ask me.
“Sure, come on over!” I would laughingly respond and proceed to whip up another magical concoction.
This entire process of researching and creating amazing herbal formulations then notating the significant changes in our bodies became quite addicting. I also loved getting feedback from friends and family.
One morning on my way to work, my boyfriend called me on my cell phone.
“Hey,” I answered.
“Hey, I just wanted to tell you that your cousin called and wants me to bring her and her entire staff some of our ‘infamous horny shakes’, and she offered to pay me $15 for each of them!” he laughed.
“How many would that be?”
“Well it’s her and her business partner, and 3 other girls. That’s 5 shakes I’d have to make. We don’t have enough to-go cups with lids for that!”
“So are you going to be a superfood shake delivery boy now?” I giggled at the thought.
“I wouldn’t mind if it were easier to transport these damn things,” he said, “if one of them spills in my truck it’s game over.”
“Too bad we can’t just put the ingredients in a pill and sell them in a bottle!” I laughed.
Then came the silence. I’m not sure exactly how long we remained quiet, but it felt like neither one of us said a word for at least a minute. We were thinking the exact same thing.
“Why don’t we?” he finally broke the silence.
“How would we even go about doing that?” I said.
“I don’t know, but we have something pretty powerful here!”
“I gotta go, I’m pulling into work,” I said.
I parked my car and ran into the Harley-Davidson dealership where I worked as a Marketing Director. I unlocked my office, turned on my computer, and immediately did an online search for “raw, organic herbal libido enhancement pills.” I found nothing significant. Then I searched for “how to make your own custom herbal supplement.”
I was officially down the rabbit hole, and for the next several months all I did was research and collect information on how this could be done. There was a lot to learn about manufacturing this type of product for mass consumption, from the steps to organic certification to the extensive testing for heavy metals and the like, but I was having so much fun researching that it didn’t feel burdensome at all.
I think that’s one of the most valuable pieces of advice that I can give anyone asking me how to turn their idea into a reality. If you have relentless passion and are willing and eager to learn every single thing about a specific industry prior to launching a new business/product/brand, then you know you’re on the right track.
If someone says: “I heard there’s a lot of money selling widgets, so I want to make a widget,” then I know they are probably going to have a difficult time launching a successful idea. Sure, it’s possible, but they are going to be at a disadvantage among competitors who have invested passion and grit into creating their widgets. You can see just from my personal story the amount of time and effort that went into research before an idea was ever born. In my opinion, passion and enthusiasm are essential for manifesting a million-dollar idea. It’s the only way you will have the tenacity to survive the endless hurdles you will face along the way. And endless hurdles you will most definitely face. Trust me. But that’s another story for another time…
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**Special Thanks to Dr. Patrick Quillin and his book, “The Healing Power of Cayenne Pepper”, copyright 1998 Leader Co., Inc.