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April 22, 2023

The Business of Birth Control

with podcast guest

Abby Epstein & Ricki Lake


Abby Epstein and Ricki Lake’s award-winning, critically acclaimed documentary The Business of Being Born debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2007. With over 5 million views, an online community of over 100,000, and more than 10 million press imprints, it is often hailed as the “must-see” film among mothers-to-be.

Looking at the complex relationship of hormonal contraception to women’s health and liberation, their latest documentary, The Business of Birth Control, features the stories of activists, doctors, and scientists who are blowing the whistle on how hormonal birth control affects the mind and body. It is shocking, empowering, and heartbreaking all at the same time.

About 13 years ago I watched The Business of Being Born and I was blown away. I remember thinking, “I have to figure out a way to work with these women.” At the time I had no idea how I was going to make that happen. A year later, I moved to New York City, got my health coach certification, and met others in the women’s health space, including Holly Grigg Spall, the author of Sweetening the Pill, who was trying to get Ricki and Abby to turn her book into a movie. She introduced me to Abby and we’ve been friends ever since. I pitched in as much as I could over the years to get this film made and it’s finally here! You can catch me at the beginning of the film, talking about the pill and ovulation.

In this episode, we talk about our experiences with hormonal birth control, the far-reaching impact our hormones have on our health, why it was difficult to make this movie, how birth control has been used against women of color, the ongoing fight for reproductive justice, and so much more!

This episode is brought to you by Nutrisense, a provider of continuous glucose monitors. Visit Nutrisense.io and use my code NICOLE25 for $25 off your first month.

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  • The response since the release of The Business of Birth Control
  • How Ricki’s birth experiences catalyzed the creation of The Business of Being Born
  • Ricki and Abby’s experiences with side effects of hormonal birth control
  • Why we end up taking the pill for so long
  • Unexpected transformations after coming off the pill
  • The biggest obstacles Abby and Ricki had to overcome to make The Business of Birth Control
  • Appreciating the advancements that birth control provided while seeking improvements
  • The bigger fight for reproductive justice
  • How birth control has been used against women of color
  • The pivotal role of black women in the reproductive justice movement
  • The impact and changes that Ricki and Abby hope will come from The Business of Birth Control


Want even more hormone and
period lovin' content?

Bonuses include: Fix Your Period workbook to use alongside the actual book
Period Toolkit that includes a series of ebooks on vaginal steaming, how to use CBD for your menstrual cycle problems, seed cycling, how to use castor oil packs to support your period and fertility, and how to live in harmony with your cycle

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Dr Jolene Brighten

Is This Normal

Dr. Jolene Brighten is a hormone expert, nutrition scientist, and thought leader in women’s medicine. She is board certified in naturopathic endocrinology and trained in

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