Client-Centered Solutions for IBS with Dena Norton – The Fed and Fearless Podcast Episode 81

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Too many people with IBS are told the lie that there’s nothing they can do about it. That’s why it’s so often a problem that fails to receive proper treatment. The truth is, there are effective things you can do to improve your gut health. Today’s guest is an expert in this and is here to share what she knows so you can get your gut back on track.



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About Dena Norton

Dena Norton, MS, RD is a registered dietitian and Holistic Nutrition Coach with Back To The Book Nutrition, a website and virtual practice dedicated to helping clients find and fix the root causes of their gut and hormone symptoms so they can get back to life! Dena holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in nutrition and is currently working towards a functional medicine certification.

When she faced HPA Axis Dysfunction, hormone imbalance, and gut symptoms that traditional medicine couldn’t explain or fix, Dena found answers in the world of holistic nutrition and functional medicine. Her own dramatic recovery opened her eyes to a whole new approach to health and gave her a passion to help others find healing as well.

With over 15 years of experience in both the traditional medical system and the holistic health sphere, Dena now combines all she’s learned to leverage the best research-backed and results-driven approaches to help her clients optimize their health. Her work has been featured on Dr. Axe, Prevention Magazine, Fitness Magazine, The Huffington Post, and many others.

New Trends in Treating the Gut

Despite past trends in medicine that overlooked the complexities of IBS, good changes are happening. As functional medicine becomes more popular, more practitioners are taking a deeper look at this issue. Instead of looking at IBS as a catch-all for mysterious gut issues, the functional medicine approach is much more nuanced and comprehensive.

To that end, Dena explains the importance of getting individualized help from an expert to really get to the root causes of your problem. Since a diagnosis of IBS is often used to explain away unexplained symptoms, it is really important to play detective and investigate the issue further. We talk about looking into food sensitivities, stool-testing, medication, and supplementation to make lasting changes.


Starting With Good Nutritional Foundations

Dena understands the importance of beginning with good foundations. This starts with how you approach food, getting enough sleep, and managing stress. Stress in particular has such a large downstream effect on digestion that Dena wants everyone to start there. Slow down and eat in a state where you can really focus on your food. 

With busy modern lifestyles, this is not always that easy. Yet, this is crucial if you want better digestion. Dena goes over her steps to eating mindfully while reducing stress. This is so often the first step to getting gut health back under control.

How can you eat more mindfully to heal your gut? Leave a comment below! 


Got a question you’d love to hear me answer on the show? Leave me a voice message here!



  • How Dena’s own health issues led her to pursue functional medicine [5:15]
  • What IBS means as a “diagnosis” [11:10]
  • Helpful and non-helpful tools to alleviating symptoms of IBS [18:13]
  • How testing for food sensitivity plays a role in healing gut problems [21:19]
  • Starting with the foundations of good digestion [29:35]
  • Important lifestyle factors that people tend to overlook [36:48]
  • Leveraging scientific advancements to treat IBS [42:50]



“It’s exciting for our career and our space. There are a lot of young dietitians and dietitians-to-be who really do get that there is something more out there and they’re seeking it.” [10:54]

“There’s never just one thing. It’s like a tangled web. So you got to put all the pieces on the table, prioritize, get an order of operations, and then have the time, patience, and expertise to work through them little by little.” [29:18]

“I’m not against medication. I’m not in any one camp when it comes to food or medicine or anything. It’s really all about sitting in the middle and leveraging anything that’s scientifically valid that works.” [45:44]



Find Dena Online:

Free 10 minute Discovery Call

Find out more about What Causes IBS (and how to fix it for good)

Free Download: Meal Time Checklist for Better Digestion

Review Fed and Fearless on Apple Podcasts! Send a screenshot of your review to or send me a DM on Instagram, and I’ll send you my Overcoming Undereating eBook. If you post your favorite episode in your Insta stories and tag me @LauraSchoenfeldRD, I’ll also send you my 14-Day Calorie Challenge Recipe Guide!

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I'm a women's health expert and a registered dietitian (RD) with a passion for helping goal-oriented people fuel their purpose.

I help nutrition entrepreneurs grow their income and their impact by packaging their brilliance into transformative coaching and consulting programs, and get crystal clear on their marketing strategy.

I'm on a mission to help nutrition business owners drop the hustle and come into alignment with their ideal business goals, so they can work from a sense of ease and abundance, and build the online business of their dreams. 

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