no. 131 – The Q-Collar Episode

In this episode, you’ll learn about the FDA-cleared medical device that’s been shown in clinical trials to reduce the risk and severity of brain injury in athletes.

THIS UNMILLENNIAL LIFE PODCAST SHOW NOTES

EPISODE KEYWORDS

podcast, umillennial, Gen X, podcasts for women, women over 40, women over 50, teen athletes, repetitive head impact, concussion prevention

EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

(transcript generated through AI; may contain spelling errors)

0:00
If your skin doesn’t know whether to breakout or wrinkle, if you’re caught between planning the third grade class party and researching retirement plans or if you want to work out with the idea of CrossFit makes your 40 Something knees a you’ve come to the right place. Welcome to This Unmillennial Life.

Regan Jones 0:24
I’m your host, Regan Jones, and welcome to today’s show. So this episode kicks off the second half of season seven, it is hard to believe that we are now in real-time going into the year 2024. That this is the seventh season of the podcast. As I have said a numerous times over the last couple of years, it’s been a rocky couple of years, for me, and for many of us who has it not been a just a strange, strange time for but we hopefully continue to get back into whatever our newest normal is, and I’m hopeful for 2024 that it is going to be better than ever. Okay, so kicking off 2024 We’re not going into any nutrition topics. Although I will give you a preview to tell you that I am about to hop on a plane in the next couple of days to head to an international nutrition conference. I haven’t been back to this international nutrition conferences hasn’t been held internationally since 2020. just mere weeks before the world sort of shut down was the last time that I attended this nutrition conference on an international scale. It was domestic last year and I attended it. But attending this nutrition conference often gives me some really, really challenging ideas about new nutrition and food topics to bring to you here on the podcast. I’m excited about that. But to kick off season seven, part two, we’re actually talking about something that is completely really unrelated to nutrition, this could be filed under fitness, this could be filed under parenting, or just information that you likely have never been presented with. And that is the information about how a new FDA cleared device and it’s actually not that new. You’re gonna hear that here in the podcast, but it’s new to many of us, an FDA cleared device is helping to reduce the injury problems, whatever you want to say associated would with repetitive head injury. Okay, I’m using the updated terminology right here in the beginning of the episode, because I already have the luxury of having gone through this interview and listen to all of this information. You’ll listen to me start this episode, and my interview with my guest talking about concussion. And many of you probably if you have teen athletes or collegiate athletes that are in your family or even young athletes, you probably talk in terms of concussion and concussion prevention. We’ve had episodes related to concussions here on the podcast. But I think today’s guest is a phenomenal job of helping us understand that the long term risks for our brain health is not just related to a once or twice, you know, incidents of concussion, but it’s about this repetitive head injury. And my guest today is going to talk about how the topic that we’re talking about the Q-Collar helps to seatbelt in an athlete’s brain to help reduce the trauma associated with repetitive Head Impact. Okay, so joining me in today’s episode is Suzanne Williams. Let me tell you a little bit about Suzanne. Suzanne is currently the vice president of sports marketing at q 30 innovations and they are the maker of today’s topic, the Q-Collar at Q30 Innovations. Suzanne manages the company’s relationships with professional and college athletes. And here’s a little bit of Suzanne’s background that I connect on a deeper level prior to q 30. She spent 17 years as an executive at Under Armour ating and it’s transitioned from a startup to a globally recognized brand. And I say that I connect with that because Suzanne and I had a nice little conversation about Auburn University being one of the first, you know, universities to kind of take up Under Armour and many of you know or maybe you do or doubt that I’m an Auburn grad and I hope that if any of your Alabama grads don’t lose you just with that acknowledging or or even Georgia grads, I’ve come to realize that even University of Georgia people don’t necessarily like Auburn folks as much as I wish that they did. But anyway, so that was something that we connected on because I vividly remember when Auburn made that transition over to Under Armour and so she has just an extremely impressive background. She is also a mother to to young athletes, and I think that what you’re going to hear in today’s episode is just the vital importance of understanding what tools are available specifically the Q-Collar

5:00
as a tool to reduce the potential impact for head injury and repetitive head impact on our athletes. Okay, so with that, I’ll say Suzanne, welcome to the show.

Suzanne Williams 5:12
Thanks, Regan. I’m so excited to be here.

Regan Jones

Thank you so much for joining me. This is one of those interviews that as I told you, before we started recording is way overdue. And the reason it’s overdue as listeners of this podcast, no, you know, this podcast is called This Unmillennial Life, which translates to mostly my Unmillennial Life, things that are happening in my life, kids, you know, things, people who listen to the show, you’ve heard me talk about my children, they’ve kind of actually grown up here on the show, and I’ve done an episode in the past about concussions. And from a nutrition standpoint, and Suzanne, I don’t know that, you know, we didn’t mention it ahead of time. I’m a registered dietitian. So we’ve talked about, you know, concussion protocol, the importance of

5:56
omega threes and even discussed creating on the podcast, you know, just in terms of that aspect. But one of the most important things that we’ve done, I think, in our family’s life, is get a Q-Collar for my older son, who is a lacrosse player to wear after he experienced his first concussion. And as I was telling you, and I’ll say to the listeners, you know, when people see this Q-Collar that my son wears, they will inevitably ask, what is that thing around your son’s deck, and I’m able to tell them, It’s a Q-Collar, I’m able to tell them, you know, that it’s really intended to reduce his risk for concussion, but I cannot tell them how it works. So that’s what you’re gonna do here today, that and more is help listeners understand that because I have so many listeners who are in a similar position to me with sons and daughters that are playing lacrosse, that are playing football in a number of different sports hockey, for instance. And I really want to to help get this on their radar and help them understand. So unpack for us. How does the Q-Collar work?

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, it’s a great question. And I’m excited to kind of give you the 32 second download. Because it’s when you look at it, you know, it doesn’t easily explain how it’s working. But to give you a little bit of background on the Q-Collar, it’s a class to medical device. It’s FDA cleared, so it’s safe, and it’s effective. And what most people don’t know about it is that it was actually inspired and designed to help war fighters in Afghanistan. So that was the real need for it. The US military came to a group of doctors and said, Look, our war fighters on the battlefield are experiencing high rates of TBI, traumatic brain injury, and they said, Can you build us a better helmet. And one of the doctors said, it’s not the helmet, right? The helmet protects your skull from fractures, we need to make a device that protects the brain from brain slosh. Because when your brain moves within your school, that’s where the injury occurs. And so this doctor said, I need to come up with an idea to create a seatbelt for the brain. And so he started focusing on jugular vein compression, which is how the Q-Collar works. So blood goes up in your head like normal, there’s no changes there. But the Q-Collar puts slight pressure on the muscles outside of your jugular vein. So that’s like right below your ear right behind your ear. That pressure is about the same as a necktie. So what it’s doing is as bloods recirculating back to your heart, it’s just compressing that jugular vein slightly, and it’s leaving a backfill of about two or about one teaspoon of blood in the veins around your brain. And by doing that, it’s helping to eliminate the extra space in your skull, that allows your brain to slosh. So your brain is a gelatinous material, and it sits in a bed of fluid. And when you move it moves within your skull. So it doesn’t matter what helmet you’re wearing. And it doesn’t matter what plane surface you’re on. If there’s an impact, your brain can slosh within your skull. And that sloshing is what causes the injury. By backfilling that teaspoon of blood in the veins around your brain is essentially eliminating that extra space. And it’s locking your brain in like a seatbelt, or like an airbag or think about bubble wrap, you know, we’re bubble wrapping around your brain. So when you do have an impact, there’s less opportunity for your brain to slosh, which means there’s less opportunity for your brain to be injured.

Regan Jones

So the science is fascinating, and I appreciate you going through the detailed explanation of how it worked. I knew that there was something to do with the compression and blood flow, but I never really understood how that was helpful. Let so let me ask a couple of clarifying questions. When an athlete wears a Q-Collar and there is this the seatbelt for their brains, this slight bit of compression, do they notice anything different you know just in terms

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of like cognitive ability, you know, like you think about like, is this? Does this feel any different to them when they’re wearing the Q-Collar?

Suzanne Williams

Great question. So part of the FDA approval process was that we had to, you know, confirm that that slight amount of pressure has no adverse effects on you. So no, you won’t feel it. So blood goes up like normal. You don’t feel any different with that slight backfill, it doesn’t change your heart rate, it doesn’t change your blood oxygen levels, it doesn’t change your reaction time, you don’t notice it. It’s essentially like you’re sitting at a church service or at a wedding wearing a necktie. It’s that same amount of pressure. In fact, people compress their jugular vein all the time, and you don’t know it. So if you yawn, you’re compressing your jugular vein. If you sleep on the side of your body at night, you’re compressing that side that’s down, you know, closest to the bed. If you raise your arm above your head, you’re actually compressing your jugular vein on that side. So compressing your jugular vein is not new, it’s not foreign. We’re just creating a consistent compression so that, you know that blood just helps backfill slightly, but it doesn’t change the way you feel. Sometimes athletes will say, you know, the first week or so that they’re getting used to the device. They feel a heightened sense of clarity, they said this, and this is open up a little bit. They definitely feel more alert, they feel a little bit more clear headed. But there’s there’s no you know, biological changes that are negatively impacting your body.

Regan Jones

Okay, so a couple of other questions. Well, and one just small question, I assume that it’s that jugular compression that makes the Q-Collar different than you know any other helmet or like a skullcap or any of the other, you know, things that are out there that are marketed as having an ability to, you know, protect the brain is that the main difference? That is the main difference. So we are the only device we are, like I said, at class to medical device, we are the only device on the market that has FDA clearance. And that shows it’s safe. And it’s actually protecting your brain. It’s protecting your brain structure. I think there’s a lot of confusion around you know, protecting your brain and protecting your skull. And we actually can protect you from the inside out. I have experience with some different things that I know go through FDA clearance in terms of medical devices. And without going into any needless detail about that the question that I have for you is I know with some things, there’s been clinical trials that were done. So how was how was the Q-Collar validated for this FDA clearance?

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, great question, because a lot of people get confused by FDA clearance and FDA approval. So this is a class two medical device that’s cleared by the FDA, they essentially mean the same thing. It’s just that this is a class two device, which means it’s low-risk. It’s noninvasive, so it gets a clearance marker, high risk, invasive devices get approval, so think like a stent inside your heart, right? Those are higher risk devices. So this is a class two device which gets cleared. And that clearance process was really extensive. So the FDA got involved, took about five years for them to clear the device. They analyzed and looked at all of the clinical trials and the independent, peer reviewed and published studies that were done over 25 are done over a 10 year time span. And what they had to do in order to clear it is they had to prove that number one it was safe for you to wear, which it is and then number two, they had to prove that it was effective. It was actually doing what the claims were saying. And so one of the clinical trials that they really looked at the hardest was done out of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. They found over 450 high school athletes, boys and girls, this is important because a lot of studies exclude females. As females add so many different variables to studies they can impact the outcome. So a lot of clinical trials will exclude women. The group that was doing this clinical trial was adamant that females had to be involved because of the high rate of TBI in women’s soccer. They found soccer athletes, football athletes and ice hockey athletes. They MRI all their brains. So they got a baseline image of their brains. All the athletes were accelerometers. And this was done so they could assess the impacts the athletes were experiencing and the impacts they were giving so they could monitor. You know how hard how much G force their body was absorbing. And then half of those student athletes were giving Q-Collar and half or not, and they went out and played their entire seasons. And at the end of the year, they re MRI their brains and they looked at the changes in the white brain matter and

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what they found were of the athletes that were wearing the Q-Collar 77% showed zero changes in their white brain matter, meaning their brain structure had not changed from the beginning of the season to the end. But for the athletes not wearing the Q-Collar 73% saw significant changes in their white brain matter. While this is important to really clarify for folks because people get really confused about concussions versus repetitive head impacts. So concussions are a subjective diagnosis, meaning there’s no reliable test that proves you had one or you did it, right. So typically, it’s diagnosed by an athlete symptoms. So meaning an athlete has to have a symptom for them to be diagnosed. from a research perspective, you can’t study something that’s subjective. So the FDA, along with these research groups agreed that using MRI DTI scans and that actually looked at your brain structure was the best way to figure out if your brain had experienced any injury, regardless of whether you had a symptom or not. Why? Now, after a football practice, we hear a lot of kids say, I’m always headachy after practice, while you’re headachy, because your body has been absorbing repetitive head impacts, or athletes will say I got my bell rung, but I didn’t get concussed or I felt foggy, or I woke up the next day and I was just a little bit lethargic. Those are all symptoms of repetitive head impacts. But they aren’t strong enough to be diagnosed with a concussion. So by using the MRI DTI scans, they were absolutely able to see the most minut changes in the brain structure, regardless of whether an athlete had any symptom associated with it. So that is how the FDA use the clinical trials to show that the device actually protects the brain structure from changes.

Regan Jones 17:02
I know that Q callor mentions in some of its material, repetitive Head Impact, like what you’ve just detailed, I’m assuming now from hearing this, and this is really honestly all very enlightening and new to me because I you know, you heard me at the beginning of this interview kind of really focusing on this one concussion that my son had had. And now I’m like really thinking? Uh, wow, I hadn’t even thought about it’s it’s from practice to tournaments, to games, it’s everything that’s happening. Is that why the focus is there for Q Callor? Is this repetitive Head Impact? Potential?

Suzanne Williams

Yes, right. And so here’s what I always do this comparison to athletes and to athletic trainers and team positions and agents and kids is, you know, it’s not one cigarette that compromises your health, right? It’s years and years of cumulative use. It’s not one sunburn that compromises your skin health, it’s years and years of cumulative overexposure to the sun. That is the way you have to look at repetitive head impacts. It is not one hit necessarily, that’s going to change it for everybody. But the years and years of cumulative impacts that add up over time, that slowly chip away at your brain structure can really affect your brain health. And so there’s been numerous studies done and in fact, doctors and researchers independent of us obviously have come out and said, you know, they’re not linking CTE to concussions, they’re linking CTE to repetitive head impacts. It’s the cumulative effect of taking repetitive hits to your brain that add up and they compromised the brain structure. And so from our perspective, if we can limit the RHI, the repetitive head impacts that are impacting your brain structure, we can limit the injury, whatever that injury is, is that injury, a diagnosed concussion? Is that injury, a headache? Is that injury feeling like you got your bell rung? Is that really an emotional change? So what we also remind athletes and doctors remind patients this is well, you know, when you have a traumatic brain injury, your symptoms can include physical things like headaches, aversion to light, you know, feeling nauseous, but they can also include emotional changes, depression, anxiety, mood swings, irrational behavior, your emotions are housing, your frontal lobe. And so when you compromise that structure, you’re adding emotional changes, in addition to physical changes. And that is what we really talk to athletes about you want to protect that brain structure as much as possible.

Regan Jones

Yeah, I think that’s one of the things that my perception is has really gotten on the radar of so many parents. Just understanding now, the long term risk for some of the things that you talk about some of the emotional issues that can that have inevitably come up with players who

20:00
have experienced these repetitive head impacts. So a couple of other questions that come to mind. Well, first and foremost is a very practical question. I admitted that my son has been wearing a Q-Collar for a couple of years. But you know, equipment wears out, you know, is there a timeframe? Should we have a Q-Collar? I’m thinking about – Well, he’s bigger now than he was before. And this was not something that I had initially thought about asking you, but are there guidelines into when you should get into a new one? How do people understand the fit? kind of walk us through that a little bit.

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, great question again. So the way the Q-Collar works is, it’s got a spring that gives it the right amount of compression or pressure to put on your jugular vein to give you the right amount of protection. That spring has about a two year lifespan two to three, depending on how often you open and close it depending on how often you use it. This was clear this was a part of the FDA clearance. So this was studied, how often you open and close it how often you wear it affects at some point that springs you know, compressive nature. So there’s a measuring tool that comes with every Q-Collar, all you have to do is every time you put it on or once a season or you know, once a year, you just want to use that measuring tool, because it’ll show you if the tips are in the correct place, you’re getting optimal amount of compression, you’re getting the optimal amount of pressure. If those tips move outside, then that just means that the spring has probably worn out and need to get a new one. The other thing that I would tell you though, is most kids outgrow it long before they wear it out. So you know, it’s just like cleats, you know, if your son you know is 150 pounds in eighth grade and then by 10th grade ease 175 pounds, you know there’s a good chance that his neck has gotten bigger. And so you just want to keep measuring it to make sure that a the spring is still healthy and be your son or daughter doesn’t need it to go up a size based on growing.

Regan Jones

Okay. And on the Q-Collar website. Are there guidelines for you know, a kid whose 250 pounder versus you know, 150 pound or like there are there guidelines and how people can know which size to buy.

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, there are but the easiest way to do it is if you have a soft measuring tape at your house, you take a soft measuring tape, and you want to measure the very middle of their neck. So that’s the skinniest part of their neck. You want to have their chin straight or down so that the neck muscles are relaxed, then you measure a second skin measurement. So it’s not so the measuring tape is snug, it’s very tight against the neck, that measurement will correlate to a size. So my neck measures about 11 and a half inches, I wear a size 11. And you typically go down because the Q-Collar fits like a cuff, you know there should be a two inch gap in between the two tips. And that gap is so that the pressure is off your trachea is off your windpipe. So it fits like a cuff that measurement will align to a size. And most athletes, you know, they’ll get there if they get a dress shirt made and there are size 16 and a quarter dress shirt they would wear a size 16 Q-Collar.

Regan Jones

Okay. Okay, very, very helpful. I know that’s one of the things that’s going to be on the minds of parents. One other thing that I would ask I’m just curious, if you know are Is there any type of movement within different athletic communities to begin to make this an across-the-board requirement? You know, mouthpieces are required. I know in the lacrosse community, there has been an upgrade in what’s required in terms of chest protection. You know, like for cardiac protection, if someone gets hit in the chest? Do you know if within any of the athletic communities there’s a move toward making this something that they you know, require for kids to wear?

Suzanne Williams

You know, you know, that’s our hope one, you know, at some point that does happen. I think right now, you know, we’re new enough. Most most teams and leagues look at it like they want their athletes be educated on it, and then they can make the decision for themselves. Sure. What I tell people all the time is introducing and changing equipment is a very challenging prospect. So to give you some context, when the NFL introduced helmets for the first time making them illegal for for athletes to wear hard helmets. It took over 10 years for every player in the NFL to adopt a hard helmet. So wow, me excuse me a face mask when they introduced face masks. It took over 10 years for every NFL player to adopt a face mask in the league because it was optional. In regards to ice hockey, it took over 18 years for the entire NHL to adopt helmets. So they introduced, they allowed athletes to start wearing helmets, but they grandfathered in existing players that could opt in or opt out of helmets. And that took 18 years in the NHL before every athlete was wearing a helmet in hockey. So I always use those examples for folks to understand like, it really comes down to personal decisions, leads, teams are really hesitant to ever mandate anything. Sure. And so we always encourage athletes and their parents to be their own advocates to do their research to learn about it, and then really do what they think is best for them.

Regan Jones

Yeah, I mean, I totally understand that and definitely respect, you know, a parent’s ability to kind of weigh in on what he or she wants to, to add to the equipment list for a child. I will say personally, I think that one of the things that’s gotten you know, in our family, one of the things that’s made it even easier to have a child wear it is the fact that he sees other people wearing it now, I mean, I told you before we started recording, we were watching an NFL game, not too long ago, and there’s an NFL player wearing a Q-Collar. And I do think that small things like that, for younger children, you know, young teens or older adolescents to kind of see that on the national stage. It definitely lends I guess it’s some form of credibility that maybe when something is new, and you hadn’t heard of it, you really know about it lends a little bit of credibility.

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, no, and Regan, that’s been my job coming to Q-Collar is, is my role has been to educate, and really help elite athletes understand, number one, What are repetitive head impacts. And then number two, how the Q-Collar helps protect you from them. So I work with our NFL athletes, I work with our PLL lacrosse, athletes, collegiate athletes, it’s super rewarding. It’s literally a passion mission. For me, as we spoke about I have sons, they love football, all they want to be as an NFL football player. And so for me, I really love working with our elite athletes, because they do have so much ability to to be role models for our children. And we just got a slew of amazing NFL guys that they’re doing it for multiple reasons. They do it because they love the game. And they want to keep the game safe. And then they want to keep the game the way it is. They do it because they want to achieve their dreams. They’re no different than our children, right. They have really high bars and dreams for themselves. They want to play multiple years in the league, they want to be, you know, franchise tags, they want to take care of their family, they want to help their team win, you know. So they, they do it because they’re dedicated to their sport. And then they do it because they love their families. And they want to be there for their families. And they’re incredibly gracious to work with. And I will tell you, our NFL athletes, they swear by it, you know, they feel better after games, they don’t feel the fogginess, they don’t feel the headaches, they sleep better at night, they feel fresh the next day. And it really has traveled through word of mouth in the locker room, that’s really been our grassroots initiative has been, you know, you wear it, you care about your teammates, tell your teammates about it.

Regan Jones

And that’s the word of mouth that I certainly have in mind for this particular podcast and sharing with other parents because like I said, you know, it’s something that we sort of took on blindly in the hopes that it would be beneficial for my son. And now just, you know, hearing you kind of go through it, I am extremely thankful that we made that decision and extremely thankful that you know, Q-Collar has been cleared has been developed, and it’s something that is available to so many people. Okay, so let me ask one more question. And then I want to make sure that people know, you know, kind of how to find Q-Collar and connect with you guys online. Is there any other feedback that you hear from athletes about wearing the Q-Collar?

Suzanne Williams

Yeah, it’s really consistent. We are our largest partners, actually the military, right? So department defense, they work with over 20 Special Ops units use the Q-Collar so think Rangers marshals, Delta Force, Greenbrae seals, SWAT teams, and Secret Service, all these groups use a Q-Collar and the rewarding part is that the feedback they give us is the same as our football players as our lacrosse players, right? They feel better. They know they’re doing everything they can to be protected. You know, think about these athletes, these soldiers they eat right? They train right? They recover, right? You know, they do all these things to put themselves in the position of success.

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and protecting yourself is a part of that, right you want to avoid injury you want to stay available. So they they have peace of mind knowing that they are doing everything they can to be available and to stay healthy. But then they also talk about, you know, enhanced performance, they feel sharper, they feel clearer. You know, being tackled in football is the equivalent of being in a car accident. So if you go through four quarters of car accidents, maybe you’re not as sharp at the end of the game, maybe you are making quote unquote, mental mistakes, you’re tired, fatigued, you’re lethargic, you got your bell rung a few times. So they really feel a difference in their performance, because they can stay sharp and focus through the course of the game. And then lastly, what you know, our soldiers and our athletes tell us across all sports, we have MLS, national men’s soccer league players wearing it is that they sleep better at night. So after a game, you come home, if you’re headachy, you’re kind of tired, you’re foggy, it actually affects your ability to fall asleep and have a nice deep recovery sleep. So our athletes, our soldiers talk about, you know, you come off an eight hour training mission, in a firing range, where you’re discharging a weapon for eight hours straight, all that recoil, all that force is coming back on you. When you try to go to bed that night, you know, you’re tossing and turning your headachy can’t fall asleep, you actually feel hungover. That’s how they describe it. After the Q-Collar were of the same eight hour, you know, firing range training session, they come home and they don’t have the headaches, they don’t have that hungover feeling. They can go to sleep easier sleep more restfully. But the best part for them is that when they look at their accuracy ratings, their accuracy, their target ability, stay consistent through the entire eight hour session versus not wearing it, you can actually see your accuracy, ability decline, as the session goes on. So, guys, it’s about feeling good. It’s about being available, but it’s also about being able to perform at your best.

Regan Jones

And I mean, I certainly can acknowledge sports are one thing, and they’re so important. But you know, in terms of military, really, in some instances, you’re talking life or death. And so mental mistakes that lead to an interception, or you know, are very different than mental mistakes that happen, I guess, you know, within the context of the military. So thank you so much for going through all of that, before we move on to telling people not only about a special offer that you have for them, and where they can find you online. Is there anything else about the Q-Collar I haven’t asked you about that you want listeners to know.

Suzanne Williams

So I always give folks this this comparison. So every time you get in your car, you put your seatbelt on, whether you’re going down the road a mile, or you’re going on a 50 mile road trip, right your seatbelt is just a part of your your equipment that you use when you get in the car and you do it because you know it mitigates injury, that if there’s an accident, wearing the seatbelt is the best way to mitigate the injury. Now, just because you put it on, it doesn’t mean you think you’re gonna get an accident every time but you’re just prepared for it. And I tell I tell athletes, so when you put that seatbelt on and say you, unfortunately are in an accident, maybe that seatbelt bruises your ribs, but it keeps you from flying through the windshield. So you still have to recover from an injury, but it’s much less severe. I tell athletes, that is what the Q-Collar is trying to do for your brain, right? It’s a seatbelt for your brain, you wear it every practice every game, because you don’t know when a hit is going to happen. And the idea of it is that it can help mitigate injury, you know, it can help keep you from being injured. But it can also help limit the severity of an injury if one does occur, right? Nothing is 100% preventable. So we can’t tell people, you know, this is where this and you’re never going to have a TBI, you’re never going to be injured, no one can do that. But if we can tell you wearing it helps mitigate the injury or mitigate or lessen the severity of it, you know, you’re just putting yourself in a better position. So think about it, like wearing a seatbelt, you wear it all the time, it just becomes a part of your, you know, process of getting in your car before you turn the key on.

Regan Jones

This may be one of the most impactful parts of this entire interview for me personally, and my family because as I said, my son’s already wearing the Q-Collar, but I’m gonna be honest with you, I think he’s only wearing it during games, you know, like not when he’s in competition with his own teammates. So it’s a there’s gonna have to be a big correction that that happens around our house. It’s kind of like you say, it’s like, we don’t let you drive to, you know, just the local grocery store really nearby the house without your seatbelt on. We’re not going to let you just be at a local practice without your seatbelt on. So I really appreciate that explanation.

Suzanne Williams

Well, Regan, I laugh about this, but I’m at the age where I remember when seatbelts were optional to mandate it. And so for me growing up, seatbelts were just

35:00
a part of life. You just put it on. And but you know, my parents’ generation, that was not the case, they were oh my gosh, like now we have to use our seatbelts what we wore, it used to be a choice. And so I just always use that because I’m like, our hope is that the next generation, your son, my son’s generation, this just becomes like a seatbelt. They just put it on before every time they take the field.

Regan Jones

Yeah, we’ve made it very clear to him, that there’s no game without the Q-Collar. But now we need to be clear, there’s no practice without the Q-Collar either. So you’ve made it, you’ve made an impact on my family immediately. Okay, so let’s do, let’s tell people both where they can go to find more information about the Q-Collar, where to order it. And then I know that you have a discount code to share with them.

Suzanne Williams

Q30.com Q, like the letter Q three zero.com. We sell them online. So you can go online, it shows you how to measure, all the studies are published on our website. So if you want to do some research, you can look at it. Athlete testimonials, you can look at our ambassadors just really all the information you need is going to be on that website. And then we want to thank you so much for having us. I mean, like I said, this is really a grassroots initiative, we’re trying to educate people. So for your listeners, we want to offer a 10% discount, and you can go and just use the code REGAN. And so you pop that into in the checkout discount code will give you 10% off, I should tell you, the Q-Collars are $199. So they’re about $200. Again, they last for two-plus years, depending on use. And the other fun fact is because it’s a class two medical device, you can use your HSA or FSA accounts.

Regan Jones

Yeah, that’s a great clarification. I actually had never really thought about the fact that you could use HSA or FSA money. So I appreciate you sharing that. Okay, so for listeners, I will of course, as I do with every episode, be sure to place a link in the show notes to the q30.com. website. I will recap in the shownotes that the code for 10% off is Regan – R e g a n – and I believe that code will be active for 30 days after the release of this episode. Is that correct? Correct. Okay, all right. Well, Suzanne, you have been just super helpful today, not only in educating, but just really inspiring me to talk to more and more of my fellow lacrosse parents about the importance of this and my hockey parents, soccer, parents, football, parents, all the all the different teams that I know that I have parents listening in the audience, so an inspiration, education, and I really am honored that you would take the time to join me today. Really appreciate it.

Suzanne Williams

Well, thank you for having me. And I’m just so blessed that you know, I get to be a part of this and help spread the message.

Regan Jones

Yeah, absolutely. Thanks so much.

Okay, that wraps up my interview with Suzanne. Now I know at the end of every episode, I always encourage you to share this with a friend but I really am encouraging you today to share this episode with your fellow athlete parents. I don’t get any compensation from this episode. I don’t get any compensation from you choosing to buy a Q-Collar. So I want to state that upfront so that you know that I’m not asking you to do this solely for my benefit. I mean, yes, I’d benefit when this podcast is passed around because I I love to get new listeners on the show, but I don’t I’m not financially being incentivized to promote this product to you. I am however very thankful that queue caller was willing to give us that this 10% discount on any purchases that are using the code Regan with their purchase. But do note that what was said in this episode is it is a 30 day window. And for most of you that’s not a big deal because I know the majority of the the downloads and the listens happened in the first 30 days. But don’t sit on this. If you are interested in moving forward with a cue caller go ahead and do that now. Use that code Reagan. And please feel free or feel encouraged or requested to share this with your fellow parents of athletes because I just know that as parents we put so much time and care into taking care of our athletes and this is Truly I believe one of the best things that we can do for the preservation of their brain health moving forward. Okay with that I am going to take a quick commercial break. And when I come back, I have a couple of different things to talk to you about for the odds and ends ending of today’s show.

Regan Jones 39:42
Today’s episode is brought to you by your color guru, your color guru.com is where I went a few years ago now at this point to have my colors done and as I have said on previous episodes, the idea of having your colors done is something that I find a little bit comical for those of us who were unmillennial because it’s certainly something that people were talking about and read books about in the 80s. But what your color Guru is offering is so much more comprehensive than that. And frankly, it’s so much easier. The whole process to have your color guru do your customized color palette that essentially makes pulling together a wardrobe that makes you look your best. The way they do that is so simple and so easy. It’s as simple as going to your color guru.com, filling out some information, uploading some pictures, and then you get back a customized color palette that frankly, takes so much of the guesswork out of figuring out what to wear. Now, you’ve heard me mention this in previous episodes, how much I love your color guru and how I think it’s absolutely transformed. Like even the compliments that I get. It’s so much easier to put something on nowadays and someone say oh, that looks nice on you, or oh, that really brings out the color of your eyes. That’s one of the big benefits. But recently, as I was last minute trying to get ready to go to someone’s home or a very casual holiday dinner, I realized I had not figured out exactly what to wear. But what I have increasingly started doing is only buying clothes that fit my your color guru color palette. I’m a moonlit summer so when you get yours done, I’d love to hear from you what your color palette is. But once you start choosing clothes that fit your color palette, what you realize is that all of those clothes work together. So in putting on a jacket that I just grabbed out the pair of boots that I had with the top that I was wearing, it all coordinated really well in a way that frankly, I just don’t have the fashion aptitude to put together on my own. And the only reason that it worked is because they all fit together in my moonlit summer color palette. So for listeners of This Unmillennial Life that would like to have your colors done or gift it to someone it would make a wonderful gift at the holidays and especially if you’re you know shopping last minute it can all be done digitally. You can go to your color guru.com and use the code Reagan, R e g, a n or 10% off your color consultation. So again, that’s your color guru.com use the code Regan for 10% off there is a link in the show notes.

Regan Jones 42:20
In today’s odds and ends ending I’m going to be talking somewhat about a topic that probably a lot of people are talking about because this is the month of January and it seems like everywhere you look people are talking about dry January or Dryuary, that’s a new term for me this year, I’ve always heard it referred to as dry January, I’ve never heard it referred to as dry you airy. But I know a lot of people are doing dry January. And if you’ve been a listener for the show for quite some time, you know that I did my own sober September a few years ago, I’ll place a link in the show notes. If you’ve never listened to that episode. It is it’s a good one. It was very raw and real about what I experienced is one of the best things that I ever did. But it’s pretty far in the distance of my mind now and I have not embarked on any type of you know, dry January sober September sober October since then, and I’m not planning to do are not in the midst of a dry January at this point. The reason I’m bringing this topic up is because I want to let you know about a different approach. And so and at least one tool that I’ve learned about that really falls into what you would call maybe a damp January now I didn’t make this term up. But I discovered in the last part of 2023, a podcast called The Alcohol Minimalist. And I really was intrigued by a lot of her episodes. Now I’ll tell you up front, she gives a weather report at the beginning of every episode. And I know that there are things that I do in this podcast that probably drive you nuts, if you want to send me an email or a message and tell me what that is I will take it to heart. But please be kind. But I often want to say to the podcast host, you know, a little weather report is okay but most of us don’t really need to know what the weather is like in Oregon every single time that we have one of your episodes. So it’s just a reminder that you guys that stick around for these podcasts, you have to put up with all of our little quirks. But she has so much good information that she talks about in her podcast. And she really I think one of the things that she does that I really appreciate. And that is something that I’m challenging myself to do going forward into 2024 and beyond is to really abandon all an all or nothing thinking and that’s all or nothing thinking in terms of alcohol consumption all or nothing thinking in terms of like meat consumption or sugar consumption. It’s no surprise to most of you who have listened to my podcast for a while, but there have been periods of my life where I would completely sort of swear off x, y or z or completely adore

45:00
one eating pattern to the exclusion of others. And I really do think that life is just too short for some of that rigid rule-oriented behavior. Now, that’s not to say that general guidelines aren’t good for us, they absolutely are. And I hope that you’ll always stick around for me to bring you the latest, greatest newest news in terms of nutrition and fitness and other topics. And that’s also not meant to imply that I in any way think that if, if you or someone that you know, has chosen to be completely alcohol-free for any myriad of reasons from religious convictions, which I wholeheartedly support, to concerns about alcoholism, whatever the case may be nothing about this is meant to call that into question, it’s just meant to say that there is for many people an opportunity to have less of an all or nothing approach to not only alcohol consumption, but many things within our lives. But what I really appreciate about what she talks about in her podcast, and again, the name of the podcast is the alcohol minimalist is that for many people who are trying to reduce their overall alcohol consumption, because maybe they’ve gotten into a daily habit that is not serving them, or serving their health and wellness, is that that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to abandon all alcohol consumption altogether. And that really is kind of what I have always viewed sort of the dichotomous thinking. And for many of you, you may think, like, Why didn’t really think that I only drink, you know, a drink when we go out to dinner or, or, you know, only, you know, drink on occasion, on a special occasion. That’s great, that’s wonderful. But there are actually a lot of people who tend to have what I would say is a daily alcohol habit. And the only way they seem to move forward is to have a no alcohol habit. And, again, what she talks about in her podcast is being more mindful and intentional about the alcohol that you do choose to drink. So again, alcohol, minimalist podcast, lots of good information, she gives a weather report from Oregon at the beginning of every episode, I wish she would not. But that is, it’s well worth listening to that little part of it to get all of the other good information. Okay. And so with that being said, I wanted to tell you about a conversation that I had at a recent party that I went to, where one of the friends that I was standing there talking to she was talking about the fact that she was doing a Dry January, and another friend that was standing there, this was kind of interesting, she said that she had listened to and I’m just sharing something with you to kind of is food for thought, if you’ve ever thought about doing a Dry January, but it’s too overwhelming to you. Especially if you are someone who tends to have a daily alcohol habit.

47:54
What I’m going to give you is some numbers and some math to try to just think about and what the friend was saying was that she had listened to I think it was a podcast, who knows? Maybe it was an Instagram real, I’m not really sure. And what they were saying was if you actually took a week off from alcohol, and let’s say it’s only five days is the workweek week, once a month, that would be 60 days worth of being alcohol free. And that that would actually total over the course of the year, two months of being alcohol free.

Now, I can tell you having done a sober September before that more than likely what you would experience if you did the five days is by the time you got to the six or seven, there’s a good likelihood that you might think that I’ll do a few more or who knows, you may think, no, that was enough. But this is just a way to kind of again, be more mindful and think about what you’re trying to achieve in reducing your overall alcohol consumption. And being able to spread that out over the course of essentially 12 work weeks, adds up to the same amount as if you took January and February off. I’m not trying to convince you to take either one, I just want to give you some tools that if it’s something that’s been tugging at your heart, it’s something that you’ve wanted to try try for yourself, but 30 days seems overwhelming. I think alcohol minimalists can give you some tools to look at a dri or month and sort of see how to do that. But then I can just give you these tools to say like, Hey, this is just really a math exercise and consider that Okay, and so then the last tool that came up at this party and it’s just, you know, kind of fun to be at a party where there are some people who are drinking alcohol and some who are not drinking alcohol and have these conversations about dry January and and a lot of the new tools and, and tips and strategies that are out there. One of the main strategies that one of my friends shared with me that she was trying in terms of just reducing her overall alcohol consumption, especially if she’s at a party and I heard this from another friend as well,

Unknown Speaker 50:00
is to incorporate a product called Athletic Brewing. Now, I’m not sure if you’ve heard of athletic brewing, they’ve been around for a while. But they’re just now I think, at least where I live getting mainstream enough that you can get them like at Kroger, I can get them at the place where I typically buy nicer wines. And I hesitate to call them a beer because they’re, they’re not a beer, they don’t have any alcohol in them. But Athletic Brewing Company is essentially a nonalcohol brew, modeled after beer, and it is so close to the taste of beer, you would be so surprised, I know that there are other nonalcoholic beers out there, but I’ve never tried any of them, I think that there tends to be maybe a little bit more stigma associated with them. And I’m not a huge beer drinker and don’t have a lot of experience in that. But I can tell you right now that if you at all, like the taste of beer, and you want to have something you know, a little bit festive to drink, I guess at a party or maybe when you get home at the end of the day, or when you you know, walk out of your home office, and you’re making dinner or whatever, and you want to pour something cold to enjoy while you’re cooking dinner. Athletic Brewing is really good. And one of the other things to note about the athletic brewing nonalcoholic brews is that they do have a gluten-free version. So that’s also very interesting to me, because beer is one of those things that are is off limits for so many people who are gluten free. And there are some gluten free beers out there. But they’re they’re gluten free non our alcoholic brew is quite enjoyable. So I hope that you’ll check them out again, I have no affiliation with them. I’m not promoting them, you know, for any financial reason I just had been told before how good they were. And I finally took the time as I’m doing what I would call more of a Damp January – being more mindful and not having this all-or-nothing thinking pattern. As I look to you know, not pour a glass of wine while I’m cooking dinner every night. Instead grab something else. That’s just been really fun. And a good good substitute. My hope and wish for the future is that somebody perfects non alcoholic wine I tried a couple of years ago, I you know, it was actually pre COVID I think so gosh, that’s been what, four years ago Time flies, I guess when you’re having so much fun. I tried to go and get a large sampling of non alcoholic wines to try and hopefully come back to the podcast with some recommendations. And they were terrible. Just I couldn’t I didn’t taste anything that was good. They all reminded me of a vinegar and not not a good vinegar. Just it was not pleasant at all. So if you happen to know of a non alcoholic wine that you think is good, please let me know because the consensus among the people that I talked to is that it just does not exist yet. But I am hopeful that it will be something that is available maybe in the future. Okay, so that’s going to wrap up today’s episode as I’ve already made my plea for, please share this episode with friends. I’ll also make a plea that if you’ve never taken the time to rank and write a review for This Unmillennial Life podcast on whatever podcast app you’re listening to it on. And if you are a fan, I would love for you to share that with other people. So as I say at the end of every episode, thank you so much for listening, subscribing, downloading, and for sharing with a friend. I hope you have a great week.

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