“How to Create a Bingeable Podcast through a Unique Format” with Dr. Christian Gonzalez of the Heal Thy Self Podcast


As part of my series of interviews about “5 things you need to know to create a bingeable podcast”, I came across Dr. Christian Gonzalez. He is a Naturopathic Doctor who specializes in Integrative Oncology. Dr. Gonzalez completed a two-year residency position at the competitive Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He’s also the podcast host of Heal Thy Self, a popular podcast about holistic healing that has nearly 1 million downloads per episode.

As an authority on non-toxic living, his viral “product reviews” on his Instagram have caught the attention of some of the most prominent health brands such as Oatly, whom he’s advised on creating more consumer-education and less chemically-based products.

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Can you tell us a bit of your “personal backstory? What is your background and what eventually brought you to this particular career path?

I was originally interested in dentistry. I wanted to become an orthodontist. I knew I wanted to help people but I did not want to go into conventional medical school because it did not fully align with principles of prevention and healing. I went to dental school for a year or so and in that time my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. Over the winter break, I went back home and took her to her oncology appointments.

There was a moment I will never forget when I asked the oncologist what she should eat and he said “calorically dense foods like pizza, pasta, cookies, burgers, whatever she wants she should eat.” This was echoed by the RD with the addition of unhealthy calorically dense drinks like Boost and Ensure.

Knowing a little about nutrition at the time I knew they were giving out dangerous advice to a cancer patient and I took it upon myself to feed her healthy calorically dense foods and drinks instead. In this time, in divine timing, I learned about Naturopathic medical school for the first time and had a tidal wave of intuition pulling me to begin the program. In that first year of Naturopathic medical school, my mother passed away. But I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to help prevent that advice that was once given to my mom about nutrition to ever be given to a cancer patient again by teaching people about true prevention.

Can you share a story about the most interesting thing that has happened to you since you started podcasting?

The most interesting thing that’s happened to me since starting is just how impactful it’s become. I did not expect it to explode the way it did. The public response and support have been incredible. Some serious stand-outs include people posting videos of me on their home TV with the whole family watching, posting videos of themselves throwing away “fake healthy” products, and my favorite, people sending me screenshots of them asking companies for their third party testing.

Can you share a story about the biggest or funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson or takeaways you learned from that?

During my first podcast, I was nervous and clearly my body was in a sympathetic mode. My mouth got so dry that I kept smacking my lips so much that it sounds like I’m doing my segment with a cotton ball in my mouth.

How long have you been podcasting and how many shows have you aired?

A little over a year. 54 episodes.

What are the main takeaways, lessons, or messages that you want your listeners to walk away with after listening to your show?

To be empowered.

To learn something about their health that no one has ever taught them.

To provide evidence-based info that at times can be controversial but offer new perspectives.

To teach people how to shop for everything from oatmeal to household cleansers.

Check out the full interview in Tracy Hazzard’s Authority Magazine article about Dr. Christian Gonzalez!

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Dr. Christian Gonzalez of the Heal Thy Self Podcast shares the best ways to:

1) Book Great Guests. Reach out on Instagram, get a publicist, make connections with other guests and their recommendations, do a bunch of podcasts.

2) Increase Listeners. Create graphics for Instagram and other social media. Post 1-minute clips that are high quality with captions and IGTVs of strong soundbites.

3) Produce in a Professional Way. Get with a studio if you can.

4) Encourage Engagement. Post strong 1-minute sound clips to bring in the potential listener. Add easy swipe up access to your show.

5) Monetize. Build your audience numbers to sell to advertisers.

In your opinion what makes your podcast binge-listenable? What do you think makes your podcast unique from the others in your category? What do you think is special about you as a host, your guests, or your content?

Check out the full interview in Tracy Hazzard’s Authority Magazine article about Dr. Christian Gonzalez!