Living Well Blog: Saratoga's Holistic Health Forum

December 2011 Archives

In this Newsletter!

1. Naturopathic Philosophy Highlight... Fun Facts:

a. Good Fats/Bad Fats to Eat

b. Depression and "Alternative Medicine"

2. Happenings:

a. Upcoming Essential Oils Workshops with Terry Quigley at the Healing Garden. Contact Terry at 518-831-9469

b. PATIENTS: Please review follow ups and cancellation policy on my website

c. Time for a symptom re-evaluation?

All patients can now download the symptom survey done at the original visit online. If you haven't re-evaluated your symptoms in a year or more, it may be a good time to fill out the form again and bring it in to your next visit. (Please add the numbers in every section when you return it)

3. Radio For Your Body-Mind-Soul: Year End Wrap Up

Join the Hay House Book Club for a review of their favorite books of 2011. The Book Club members will go over the titles that have been reviewed over the past year and discuss what Hay House titles have really inspired them. Book Bloggers will join in to share there favorites. We'll also discuss our favorite Hay House titles of the past and what books have been influences over the years. Please leave your comments on the Book Club link at to share which Hay House titles have inspired and helped you the most.

4. Book of the week: Highlights from The Year End Wrap Up

HayHouse's Booklovers Book Club Recommendations of 2011: which did you miss?

a. Married to Bhutan

b. Ravenous

c. Peace from Broken Pieces

d. Angel Therapy Handbook

e. Shift Happens

f. You Can Create an Exceptional Life

g. Winter Moon Rises

5. Don't miss out:

a. Top Reads of December 2011:

Here are just some of the topics covered in my summaries covered below of what I feel are top headlines of this month:

The power of FOOD AS MEDICINE: The benefits of antioxidant packed and Mediterranean style diets and a study on B vitamins link lower lung cancer risk
PROBIOTIC POWER: The balance of bugs in your gut is not just to relieve symptoms of constipation or diarrhea. Microbiota balance in the gut, supplemented with probiotics, have links to many health effects. Highlights include the modulation of weight, metabolism, brain health, blood sugar, and even MS!
OREGANO POWER:These feature studies are too good to miss! Learn how this powerful essential oil could be a solution to resistant superbugs!
Drug Updates: FDA warnings of 2011 including Simvastatin, 5 alpha reductase inhibitors, and various antidepressants are reviewed. Other drug updates include a warning on Zofran, adverse drug reaction statistics, and pertussis vaccination efficacy is also included.
Various Health Highlights such as the use of exercise for depression, how violent video games affect brain health, 8 tips to mind-body balance.....and there's so much more....check it out and have a great New Year.
b. Listen to my colleagues and other experts as they discuss solutions to menopausal issues on a show dedicated just for women in mid-life! Here is a link from my interview on 360menopause Radio Show on Panic Attacks and Menopause and a list of archived shows.

c. Check out my latest answer on Dr. Oz's Sharecare: This week I focused on Emotional Overeating and Brain Chemistry.

d. View the Updated Link Resources on my homepage

Naturopathic Fun Facts

These Fats are Good! Really!

Remember my blog on the connection between mood and food? Here's a refresher:

One study looked at the connection between mood, health, and nutrients. The authors found that fish oil reduced anxiety and also suppressed inflammation in the body. This makes sense considering that fatty acids are vital components involved in brain functioning, neurotransmitter signaling, and controlling inflammatory processes. (Read more about the inflamed body, inflamed brain):

Other studies have also reported a connection between intake of fatty acids and alleviating low mood. According to the Journal of Clinical Investigation, this mood effect also affected hunger cues.

There has been a lot of misinformation on the power behind healthy fats, especially from the 1980s "low fat diet" revolution. The result of low fat and high carb diets has been more heart disease and more mood disorders. In fact, Dr. Mercola recently interviewed Gary Taubes, author of Good Fat, Bad Fat about the subject. I recommend everyone concerned about health give a listen. Good science is backing up how it's actually carbohydrates and insulin deregulation that is the true cause of metabolic issues that underlie many chronic diseases.

According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition:

In summary, although substitution of dietary polyunsaturated fat for saturated fat has been shown to lower CVD risk, there are few epidemiologic or clinical trial data to support a benefit of replacing saturated fat with carbohydrate. Furthermore, particularly given the differential effects of dietary saturated fats and carbohydrates on concentrations of larger and smaller LDL particles, respectively, dietary efforts to improve the increasing burden of CVD risk associated with atherogenic dyslipidemia should primarily emphasize the limitation of refined carbohydrate intakes and a reduction in excess adiposity.

Source: Patty W Siri-Tarino, Qi Sun, Frank B Hu, and Ronald M Krauss. Saturated fat, carbohydrate, and cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr March 2010 vol. 91 no. 3 502-509

Source: Mercola, J. Interview with Gary Taubes. What if it's all a Big Fat lie? Youtube. Accessed December 28, 2011.

Clinical Evidence of Use of Alternative Medicine for Depression

More and more evidence from the main stream is supporting the use of natural treatments for chronic conditions. Below is an abstract from a meta-analysis assessing the use of non-pharmaceutical methods to aid depression. The researchers found good evidence in support of St. John's Wort and exercise. Other promising therapies included folic acid, B vitamins, and omega 3 fish oil.

OBJECTIVE: To review the clinical evidence supporting complementary and alternative medicine interventions for treating major depressive disorder.

QUALITY OF EVIDENCE: PubMed was searched from January 1966 to February 2010 using the term depressive disorder in combination with St John's wort, S-adenosylmethionine (SAM-e), exercise, acupuncture, omega-3 fatty acids, and folate. Only relevant human trials were selected.

MAIN MESSAGE: In a large meta-analysis, St John's wort was found to be equivalent to antidepressant drugs with fewer side effects. Exercise reduced depressive scores in 3 meta-analyses. Omega-3 fatty acids reduced depressive scores in a meta-analysis of 16 trials, but publication bias was identified. Oral SAM-e monotherapy reduced depressive scores in 4 of 5 small randomized controlled trials. Folate deficiency is associated with more severe and refractory depression, and supplementation reduced depressive scores in 2 of 3 randomized controlled trials. Acupuncture demonstrated limited efficacy in 1 meta-analysis and 5 other trials.

CONCLUSION: St John's wort and regular exercise appear effective in the treatment of depression. Acupuncture appears ineffective for depression, but it might offer other health benefits. Other promising therapies include SAM-e, omega-3 fatty acid, and folic acid supplementation in selected patients; further study is warranted.

Source: Nahas R, Sheikh O.Complementary and alternative medicine for the treatment of major depressive disorder. Can Fam Physician. 2011 Jun;57(6):659-63.

Be sure to check out my latest blog on Thriving through the Holidays!

Here's an excerpt:

In the next few weeks, I'll be sprinkling in my blogs more of what I learned at the IFM's Advanced Practice Module on Detoxification. However, this week I'm aware that most have their vision more on dancing sugar plums and running out for last minute gifts than on the biotransformation of the high fructose corn syrup in fruit cake. (By the way, did you know that high fructose corn syrup contains MERCURY? Yikes!) Therefore, in keeping with the season, I have decided to present another holiday blog on how to modulate some of food transgressions and tips for dealing with the added stress that holidays can bring.

Read more here.

In This Holiday Newsletter:

1. Naturopathic Philosophy Highlight... Fun Facts:

a. A Bonus: A mini- blog on Treating the Cause of Disease

b. Nature's Anti-inflammatory Foods- Include these foods in your holiday fare to decrease the effects of some of the holiday treats you may partake in!

2. Happenings:

a. Upcoming Essential Oils Workshops with Terry Quigley at the Healing Garden. Contact Terry at 518-831-9469

b. PATIENTS: Please review follow ups and cancellation policy on my website

c. Emma and I will be taking some time to be with family and loved ones this holiday season; therefore, the office will be closed from December 23rd-December 27th and again on December 30th. May you all have a beautiful holiday season filled with blessings and joy!

3. Radio For Your Body-Mind-Soul:

December 14, 2011 Intention Setting for 2012 with davidji
Why wait until January to set your intentions for the New Year? Today davidji will help you get ready for the wonderful opportunities that await you in 2012. It's the perfect time to let go of any speed bumps, obstacles, and frustrations you've encountered in 2011 - and begin to plant your seeds of intention for the year to come. No matter what has happened in your life up until now, you are always capable of new choices that will allow you to experience more happiness, love, and genuine fulfillment. Join davidji for an inspiring hour of conversation, meditation, and insight - and call in with your questions about setting powerful intentions.


Book of the week: The Wisdom of Menopause by Dr. Christian Northrup

Now completely revised, this groundbreaking classic draws on the current research and medical advances in women's health, and includes:

All you need to know about perimenopause, and why it is critical to your well-being
Updated mammogram guidelines
Nurturing your brain: sleep, mood, memory
Hormone therapy and the options available
Midlife weight control
Sex and menopause: myths and reality

5. Don't miss out:

a. My latest Blog: Thriving through the Holidays

b. Listen to my colleagues and other experts as they discuss solutions to menopausal issues on a show dedicated just for women in mid-life! Here is a link from my interview on 360menopause Radio Show on Panic Attacks and Menopause and a list of archived shows.

c. Check out my latest answer on Dr. Oz's Sharecare. This week I focused on how to ensure that what you are putting in your mouth is GMO free.

d. View the Updated Link Resources on my homepage

Naturopathic Fun Facts:

Treating the Cause, not the Condition

I love what I do! I know that it's a blessing in my life to wake up and feel grateful. I will be either heading to the office to be a guide in the therapeutic process of healing or to write/research and produce something that others can benefit from. For me, being in Arizona this past month really cemented in my psyche how my Naturopathic and Functional Medicine Practitioner colleagues are pioneers. It's the forefront of medicine, it's not just about speaking to my patients and treating what I believe to be off balance, but finding the matrix of all the factors that continue to trigger the process and removing what is not needed and giving what is. Dr. Hyman summarizes this:

Plus, just one CAUSE can create 10 or more different diseases.

For example, if you have the gene that causes celiac disease (an intolerance to gluten), it can show up as nearly 100 different diseases -- from kidney failure to osteoporosis to iron deficiency to hypothyroidism to rheumatoid arthritis to psoriasis to chronic fatigue and so on.

Most doctors will prescribe the right drug for the kidney disease, osteoporosis, iron deficiency, or hypothyroidism.

But treating all those conditions individually doesn't take the "tack" out of your foot -- and the cause of your problems won't be solved.

So if you're taking a drug that just masks your symptoms but doesn't treat the underlying problems, you may feel better for while -- but the disease keeps progressing. It's like having a broken ankle. If you take enough pain medication and produce enough adrenalin, you could run on that ankle -- but the ankle won't heal.

That's how modern medicine treats disease! It's been said that, "The greatest obstacle to discovering the shape of the earth, the continents, and the oceans was not ignorance but the illusion of knowledge." The same can be said for medicine.

What we think we know about disease just isn't working. That's why we are at a crossroads, where the old ideas we have about disease and diagnosis become less meaningful as we understand more and more about the importance of individual differences in determining illness.

In fact, we are at a time in medicine where the old ideas are rapidly becoming obsolete. The new medicine says the world is round, while the old medicine says the world is flat. It's clear where we're headed. This a time when personalized medicine will replace medicine based on diagnosis and disease.

In fact, disease and diagnosis as we know it will soon be an obsolete concept -- just like blood-letting or phrenology (the art of diagnosis based on the shape of your skull).

Source: Hyman, M. A New Era of Medicine Has Finally Arrived. December 17, 2011.

Anti-inflammatory Foods!

So are you more of the moderation types? You want to partake in some "no-nos" but don't want to feel lousy from the side effects. How about adding some of these foods as Nature's Ibuprofen to your holiday fare? According to Dr. Hyman:

Common Anti-Inflammatory Foods are what I refer to as Nature's Ibuprofen. The one's that top the list are:

Organic berries and all fruits and vegetables because they contain various photochemicals like antioxidants (vitamins C, E, beta-carotene and various minerals), bioflavonoids (like quercitin, limonene, hesperidin), and fiber which is needed for daily elimination of waste and support the healthy balance of the micro flora of the digestive tract. Grown women should aim for at least 7 servings a day and men should get 9. A serving is between ½ - 1 cup. The more COLORS the better!
Herbs and spices are showing some very promising research in reducing inflammation and are a culinary delight! They add flavor and powerful anti-inflammatory punch to your dishes!
Turmeric (contains curcumin)
Green tea
Holy Basil
Source: Hyman, M. Nature's IBU: Pain Relief from Within. December 17, 2001.

Be sure to check out my latest blog on what I learned in the detox module in Arizona!

In this Newsletter:
1. Naturopathic Philosophy Highlight Fun Facts:

Don't Eat Here- unless you want infected chicken salad--YUM!
The "kindness gene"--biology speaks nice to itself
2. Happenings:

Upcoming Essential Oils Workshops with Terry Quigley at the Healing Garden. Contact Terry at 518-831-9469
My latest publication on NDNR (Available online)
PATIENTS: Please review follow ups and cancellation policy below:
Cancellation Policy: Due to the administrative work, training, work, and time Dr. LoBisco puts into individualized treatment plans between visits, patients are subject to a $25 cancellation fee for missed appointments or cancellations the day prior to the appointment. Patients who give no notification via telephone of cancellation of appointments or less than 24 hours will be billed via PayPal the cost of the full assessment. Please note that it if one wishes to stay moving forward, regular assessment is critical and follow ups are generally re-scheduled within 3-4 weeks with adequate notice. Read the rest of the policy here.
Look for Top Reads-Flora and GMOs highlighted to bring in good cheer.

3. Radio For Your Body-Mind-Soul:

The Light Within with Dr. Northup
In the Northern Hemisphere, we're in the darkest season of the year. But deep inside each of us, something is growing in the light. In fact, scientific experiments prove that our bodies emit light. In this episode of Flourish, Dr. Northrup focuses on the light within, and what you can do to shine yours.

4. Book of the week: Healing the New Childhood Epidemic. Kenneth Block, MD.

Did you know that fact mothers with high toxic exposure + genetic predispositions in faulty gene protecting enzymes (methylation SNPS) can lead to increased risk of Autistic Spectrum children. Children are more sensitive to these toxins due to their unformed immune response and decreased excretory potential. Furthermore, children today are exposed to the most detrimental diet available in human time. Did you know high fructose corn syrup in most processed foods contain mercury?? In his book, Dr. Bock explains this new childhood epidemic of ASD, allergies, asthma, and ADHD which is now present in 1/3 of children!

Dr. Bock was a key lecturer at the Institute for Functional Medicine's Detoxification Advanced Practice Module in Arizona. Dr Bock's specialty is working with children with Autistic Spectrum Disorders and other pediatric epidemics. Dr. Bock is a genius in assessing the multi-factorial effect of toxins on children and how they impact their metabolic processes, mitochondria function (our energy producing cells), immune function, endocrine function, and gene regulation and DNA.

Last weekend, Dr. Bock specifically discussed a detailed case study of one of the many children he has helped recover from a diagnosis of an Autistic Spectrum Disorder. This book is a crucial read for all parents. We are passing our future over to children, and unfortunately, mothers and fathers are passing there toxicity to their children. Dr. Bock provides guides on how to prevent and work with our genetics and environments to assist in raising healthy children.

Bock, K. Recognizing Neurotoxicity and Immunotoxicity within the Functional Medicine Model. IFM. Detox Advanced Practice Module. Phoenix, AZ. December 9, 2011.

5. Don't miss out:

Click here to subscribe on my homepage in order to receive my latest blogs via email and add in my goal of promoting Integrative Health to the Masses!
My interview on 360menopause Radio Show on Panic Attacks and Menopause is still available. While you're there, browse through the archives of other health experts.
Check out my latest answer and more on Dr. Oz's Sharecare: The Safety Considerations of Liver Cleansing
View the Updated Link Resources on my homepage
Updated vaccine links
Resources for finding healthy organic meats and non-GMO guides

Naturopathic Fun Facts:

Don't Eat Here---unless you like chicken d' salmonella!

The good news about choosing Organic, is you know not only that you are eating healthier, but you also know what you're not getting---sewer sludge, GMO's, hormones, antibiotics, and in the case of fast food....l' chicken d' salmonella. Dr. Mercola emphatically explains:

McDonald's and Target will no longer purchase eggs from Sparboe Farms due to potentially unhealthy conditions discovered at Sparboe's egg laying facilities. The egg producer was cited for at least 13 violations of rules meant to prevent dangerous salmonella outbreaks
Most restaurant chains get their food from confined animal feeding operations (CAFO); be it eggs, beef, or chicken. This is in part what makes fast food so inferior, no matter what restaurant chain you're frequenting
Organic eggs are statistically FAR safer than CAFO-raised eggs. In one study, more than 23 percent of farms with caged hens tested positive for salmonella, while just over 4 percent of organic flocks tested positive
Aside from a greater risk of food poisoning, fast food is a primary driving factor of obesity and poor health due to inferior raw ingredients, high sugar content and added chemicals
Join the Food Revolution and Embrace Real Food...

If you're at all concerned about your health--whether you want to gain health or maintain it--nutrition is paramount. In fact, your diet accounts for about 80 percent of the health benefits reaped from a healthy lifestyle, with the remaining 20 percent from exercise. So what makes for a nutritionally sound diet? First and foremost, a healthy diet is based on fresh whole, preferably organic foods, and foods that have been minimally processed. These are the signs of high-quality, health-promoting foods you'll want to look for when grocery shopping:

1. It's grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers (organic foods fit this description, but so do some non-organic foods)

2. It's not genetically engineered (GMOs)

3. It contains no added growth hormones, antibiotics, or other drugs

4. It does not contain any artificial ingredients, including chemical preservatives

5. It is fresh (keep in mind that if you have to choose between wilted organic produce or fresh conventional produce, the latter may be the better option)

6. It did not come from a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO)

7. It is grown with the laws of nature in mind (meaning animals are fed their native diets, not a mix of grains and animal byproducts, and have free-range access to the outdoors)

8. It is grown in a sustainable way (using minimal amounts of water, protecting the soil from burnout, and turning animal wastes into natural fertilizers instead of environmental pollutants)

If the food meets these criteria, it is most likely a wise choice, and would fall under the designation of "real food," which is the very foundation of good health.

Source: Mercola, J. The Worst Possible Place to Eat if You Want to Stay Healthy. December 9, 2011.

The Kindness Gene

Do you ever wonder why some people are just so darn nice?? Sometimes "Mr. and Mrs. Positive" can make one feel a little bit like "Mr. and Mrs. Grumpy Pants." But-ha! There's a biochemical reason beyond stress, PMS, and the in-laws that may explain the difference between Susie sunshine and Oscar the Grouch.

Scientists have actually found a "kindness gene." It seems as though the hormone receptors for oxytoxin, the bonding hormone in the hypothalamus that is responsible for creating feel good chemicals from contact, are more active in those who are naturally empathic and compassionate. In other words, Mr. and Mrs. Positive receive a greater chemical reward in their brains from helping the old lady across the street than your nasty mother-in-law yelling at the old lady to speed the heck up! The following article from VitalChoice explains how those who are kinder are actually genetically pre-wired to feel a greater reward for their efforts.

Using videos of couples interacting, scientists found that a genetic trait strongly influences people's tendency toward empathy, sensitivity, and sociability ... in other words, being naturally caring, kind, and convivial.

The genetic trait in question affects cell receptors for oxytocin ... a peptide from the hypothalamus that influences the body and brain through its dual roles as hormone and neurotransmitter.

Oxytocin is best known for facilitating birth and breastfeeding ... but it also encourages trust, love, social recognition, pair bonding, and positive emotions in general.

As the authors wrote, "... we found that individuals [with genotype GG] were judged to be more pro-social than carriers of the A allele. Thus, individual differences in [the oxytocin-receptor gene] are associated with behavioral manifestations of pro-sociality, which ultimately guide the judgments others make about the individual." (Kogan A et al. 2011)

"It was amazing to see how the data aligned so strongly by genotype," Saturn said. "It makes sense that a gene crucial for social processing would yield these findings; other studies have shown that people are good at judging people at a distance and first impressions really make an impact." (OSU 2011)

Can people ovecome an innate caring/trust deficit?
The answer to this critical question is likely to be "yes". Dr. Saturn, for one, believes that people can and do overcome their genes all the time.

Referring to people with the "less-caring" gene profile, she said, "It may not be that we need to fix people who exhibit less social traits, but that we recognize they are overcoming a genetically influenced trait and that they may need more understanding and encouragement." (OSU 2011)

And Kogan said that many factors ultimately influence kindness and cooperation.

"The oxytocin receptor gene is one of those factors - but there many other forces in play, both genetic and non-genetic. How all these pieces fit together to create the coherent whole of an individual who is or is not kind is a great mystery that we are only beginning to scratch." (OSU 2011)

Wetherby, C. Kindness Gene Found. VitalChoice Newsletter. December 8, 2011.

In this Newsletter:

1.     Naturopathic Philosophy Highlight Fun

a.       Are Antibiotics Making Us Fat?

b.      Green Tea and Cholesterol

c.       CoQ10 and Brain Function with Statin Use

2.     Happenings:

a.       Upcoming
Essential Oils Workshops with Terry Quigley and Lori Mershon at the Healing
Garden. Contact Terry at 518-831-9469

b.      I'll be in Arizona from December
8th-December 13th learning about
and Detoxification
I will not be available for emails/phone at this time, but look forward to
sharing with you all at that time. Emma will still be available for scheduling,
general inquiries and will be handling all calls, faxes and emails.

c.       PATIENTS: Please review follow ups and
cancellation policy below

Due to the administrative work, training,
work, and time Dr. LoBisco puts into individualized treatment plans between
visits, patients are subject to a $25 cancellation fee for missed appointments
or cancellations the day prior to the appointment. Patients who give no
notification of cancellation of appointments or less than 24 hours will be
billed via PayPal the cost of the full assessment. Please note that it if
one wishes to stay moving forward, regular assessment is critical and follow
ups are generally re-scheduled within 3-4 weeks with adequate notice.

***It is
not recommended that one stay stagnant in a protocol. Instead, the focus should
be on continued progress and attaining adequate feedback as your body heals.
Integrative medicine works best through continued support and keeping the
body healthy; therefore, follow ups are essential for attaining treatment
Follow ups are intended to continue to support your body as it
heals by (1) discussing the blocks to implementing lifestyle changes,
(2) updating  your nutritional protocols, and (3)assessing changes in
blood chemistry. Once maintenance is reached, follow ups are generally every
3-6 months. I urge all my patients to be active participants in their health.
Our therapeutic work together is most successful when it is collaborative,
which requires both patient and physician alike to maintain accountability
throughout.  Thank you.

3.     Radio For Your Body-Mind-Soul:

a.       Diet: What
Works, What Doesn't
with Dr. Northrup

Are you
confused about what to eat in this age of abundant food? We are deluged with
conflicting information about food, especially around the holidays. Join Dr.
Northrup to find out what diet is right for you!

b.      Staying happy, healthy, and hot, during the Holidays with Michelle Phillips

With the cold months and the hustle and bustle of the Holidays upon us
taking care of you can fall by the wayside. And we all know that if you are not
feeling well you certainly won't be looking your best either. So before you get
caught under the mistletoe looking and feeling like a lump of coal in a
stocking take some time out for this week's Beauty Blueprint. Join
Michelle and her guests as she gives tips on
the latest supplements, superfoods, and ways to exercise physically and
mentally, to ensure that you get a beautiful gift inside and out.

c.       Ending Thyroid Symptoms with Marcelle Pick

Over 30
million Americans have fatigue, depression, and weight gain from thyroid
disease. Most are women ages to 30-60. Unfortunately, even with treatment, most
don't improve. Dr. Alan Christianson, author of the
Complete Idiot's Guide to Thyroid Disease, explains why this happens. Learn
the tips and tricks that have enabled thousands of his patients to reverse
their symptoms and feel their very best again.

4.     Book of the
The Beauty Blueprint with Michelle Phillips

latest bestseller discusses beauty from the inside out, learn about how feeling
beautiful from the inside can radiate outward and how you can nourish your
physical body and appearance with practical solutions. Here Michelle's message
on her website via

5.     Don't miss out:

a.       My
latest Blog on Detoxification and Treating People, Not Diseases!

b.      My interview on 360menopause Radio Show-Panic
Attacks and Menopause

c.       Check out my latest answer and more on Dr. Oz's Sharecare: I discuss the benefits of

d.      View the Updated Link Resources on my homepage

Naturopathic Fun Facts:

Are Antibiotics Making You Fat?

They could be!! Here are some
studies that indicate the imbalance in microflora in our gut from toxins, antibiotics,
and pharmaceuticals can hurt our waist line. You can read more about probiotics

H.pylori death and fat increase

meal-associated leptin and ghrelin levels and BMI changed significantly after
H. pylori eradication, providing direct evidence that H. pylori colonization is
involved in ghrelin and leptin regulation, with consequent effects on body

Source: Francois
, et al. The effect of H. pylori eradication on meal-associated changes in
plasma ghrelin and leptin. (abstract)BMC
2011 Apr 14;11:37.

Dysbiosis and Waist-line

Levels of
ghrelin should ordinarily fall after a meal to signal your brain that
you're full and ready to stop eating; an increase would therefore essentially
tell your brain to continue eating, leading to weight gain. Further, the
increase in leptin levels is concerning because overexposure to high levels of
the hormone can lead to leptin resistance, which means your body is unable to
properly hear leptin's signals.

The way your
body stores fat is a highly regulated process that is controlled, primarily, by
leptin. If you gain excess weight, the additional fat produces extra leptin
that should alert your brain that your body is storing too much fat and needs
to burn off the excess.

found that obese individuals had about 20 percent more of a family
of bacteria known as Firmicutes, and almost 90 percent less of a bacteria
called Bacteroidetes than lean people. Firmicutes help your body to extract
calories from complex sugars and deposit those calories in fat. When these
microbes were transplanted into normal-weight mice, those mice started to gain
twice as much fat.

Source: Mercola, J. This Commonly
Used Drug Found to Promote Obesity. November 24, 2011.

How Do Antibiotics
Improve Growth in Animals and YOU!?

low-dose administration of an antibiotic can increase the rate and efficiency
of weight gain in healthy livestock. The presence of antibiotics likely changes
the composition of the gut flora to favour growth. Debate is ongoing as to how
that gut flora are changed; change may simply be a reduction in numbers, a
change in species compo-sition or a combination of the two. For example, a low,
continuous dose of antibiotic may:

·         eliminate
bacteria that steal essential nutrients required by the animal for growth

·         reduce
competition allowing beneficial bacteria that produce essential nutrients
required by the animal for growth to multiply

·         control
growth of bacteria that cause low-grade infections or produce toxins, both of
which result in thick intestines that do not absorb nutrients well.

antibiotics may also enhance feed consumption and growth by stimulating
metabolic processes within the animal.

Klotins, K. Antibiotic Use for Growth Improvement -

Controversy And Resolution. June 2005.

Green Tea
Reduces LDL Cholesterol

is a snapshot from science on the awesomeness of nutrigenomics (the science of
how food affects genes). Specifically, this article highlights how green tea favorably
modulates cholesterol level.  Green tea
is high in
antioxidants and
catechins. I
discussed in the past the mechanism of antioxidants on metabolism, and this article is further proof of the ancient
culture traditions of tea sipping. There have also been previous research articles
on the effects of green tea on
fatty liver. Therefore, green tea not only helps
cholesterol, but may heal your liver, where cholesterol is formed!

Conclusion: The analysis of eligible studies
showed that the administration of green tea beverages or extracts resulted in
significant reductions in serum TC and LDL-cholesterol concentrations, but no
effect on HDL cholesterol was observed. 

Xin-Xin Zheng, et al. Green tea intake lowers fasting serum total and LDL
cholesterol in adults: a meta-analysis of 14 randomized controlled trials. Am J
Clin Nutr August 2011 vol. 94 no. 2 601-610.

Neurosci Lett. 2011 Aug
26;501(2):92-5. Epub 2011 Jul 8.

Jin; Ruo-heng Zheng; You-ming Li. Green Tea Consumption and Liver Disease. Medscape.
09/05/2008; Liver International. 2008;28(7):990-996.

Coenzyme Q10 and cognition in atorvastatin treated dogs.

Statins can have bad side effects, some of the issue is related to their effect on blocking coQ10. Recently, there's been studies showing there negative impact on blood
sugar. Studies have shown how low cholesterol affects food, but here's one
article relating low coQ10 to cognition:

Statins have been suggested to protect
against Alzheimer's disease (AD). Recently, however, we reported that aged dogs
that underwent chronic statin treatment exhibited cognitive deficits compared
with age matched controls. In human studies, blood levels of Coenzyme Q10
(CoQ10) decrease with statin use. CoQ10 is important for proper mitochondrial
function and is a powerful antioxidant, two important factors for cognitive
health in aging.

However, poorer cognition was correlated with
lower parietal cortex CoQ10. This study in dogs suggests that serum CoQ10 is
reduced with atorvastatin treatment. CoQ10 levels in brain may BE linked to impaired
cognition in response to atorvastatin, in agreement with previous reports that
statins may have a negative impact on cognition in the elderly.


Martin SB, Cenini G, Barone E, Dowling AL, Mancuso C, Butterfield DA, Murphy MP. Coenzyme
Q10 and cognition in atorvastatin treated dogs. (abstract)
Neurosci Lett. 2011 Aug
26;501(2):92-5. Epub 2011 Jul 8.

Hyman. Do Statins Cause Diabetes and Heart Disease?

In this Newsletter:

1. Naturopathic Philosophy Highlight Fun Facts:

a. Highlights of November 2011 Top Reads:

b. The Gluten Monster
c. You are What you Experience

d. Probiotics better than Placebo for Respiratory Infections

e. Bonus: Yummy Gingerbread Cookies (Gluten Free)

2. Upcoming Events!

a. Upcoming Essential Oils Workshops with Terry Quigley and Lori Mershon at the Healing Garden. Contact Terry at 518-831-9469

b. I'll be in Arizona from December 8th-December 13th learning about Biotransformation and Detoxification! I will not be available for emails/phone at this time, but look forward to sharing with you all at that time. Emma will still be available for scheduling, general inquiries.

3. Radio For Your Body-Mind-Soul:

a. Ten Years Younger with Marcelle Pick, NP
Steven Masley, M.D., author of Ten Years Younger, has a passion for empowering people to achieve optimal health. Tune in to hear him talk about the Ten Years Younger program he has developed: secrets to looking and feeling healthier, sexier, trimmer and stronger.

b. Living Life with the Attitude of Gratitude with Dr. Darren Weismman
Join Dr. Darren as he interviews Diane Gates for the first ½ hour about emotional and physical triggers leading to compulsive eating patterns.

4. Book of the week: Body Ecology Diet by Donna Gates

A book that promotes health and aims at a lifestyle approach vs. calorie counting and confusing food plans!

Finally, a book about lifestyle and how to promote health! Confused about diet? Diane offers some tools that focus around fermented foods which promote probiotics in our microflora to boost immunity and boost wellness.

Remember, following one type of plan doesn't work for everyone, we are all different. Donna's book about encourage the use of whole foods and fermented products are good points for everyone to consider, even if not called upon to follow the whole program.

5. Don't miss out:

a. My latest Blog: November 2011 Top Reads & Going Gluten Free

b. My interview on 360menopause Radio Show-Panic Attacks and Menopause

c. Check out my latest answer and more on Dr. Oz's Sharecare: My latest answer summarizing what causes sugar cravings

d. View the Updated Link Resources on my homepage

e. Help me get the word out on Naturopathic and Functional Medicine!! The more people that subscribe to my blog (if your email has changed, you need to update this via my website by unsubscribing then re-subscribing), the more likely I'll be a guest on international webinars!

November Top Reads is Here!
Wow, we are already into December and moving peacefully and healthily through the holiday season. November's Top Reads is jam backed with goodies! (Pun Intended). Below are some highlights to wet your appetite! ( I can't help myself!)

It's Back!!

The Gluten Monster! Many of you know by know that I think avoiding gluten is a good idea for most. One of you, my wonderful patients, brought this NY Times article to my attention, providing proof the mainstream is paying attention to what Integrative Practitioners have been touting.

Should We All Go Gluten Free (NY Times)

But Guandalini didn't buy it. And neither did Dr. Alessio Fasano, another Italian who was practicing at the University of Maryland. The genes were here, Fasano recalls thinking, courtesy of our European ancestors, and so was the gluten, a natural component of wheat that provides the elastic qualities that make for delicious baked goods. But the protein is also difficult to digest. And even a healthy intestine does not completely break gluten down. For those with celiac disease, the undigested gluten essentially causes the body's immune system to lash out at itself, leading to malabsorption, bloating and diarrhea -- the classic gastrointestinal symptoms -- but also, at times, joint pain, skin rashes and other problems. In Italy, Fasano routinely saw celiac disease. Surely it was in the U.S. too. Hence, in 1996 Fasano published a paper, asking, in the title, a simple question: "Where Have All the American Celiacs Gone?"

O'Brien, K. Should We All Go Gluten Free? New York Times. November 25, 2011.

Naturopathic Fun Facts:
You Are What you Experience

A recent study from Virginia Commonwealth University analyzed over 12,000 identical twins over a lifespan. The study included nine data sets of individuals who experienced anxiety and depression. By assessing identical twins, the researchers were evaluating the impact of genetics vs. environmental impacts on mental outlook.

The researchers found that environmental impacts had a significant impact on symptoms, especially in relation to life experiences early in life. According to Eurekalert:

Our life experiences -- the ups and downs, and everything in between -- shape us, stay with us and influence our emotional set point as adults, according to a new study led by Virginia Commonwealth University researchers. The study suggests that, in addition to our genes, our life experiences are important influences on our levels of anxiety and depression.

"In this time of emphasis on genes for this and that trait, it is important to remember that our environmental experiences also make important contributions to who we are as people," said principal investigator Kenneth Kendler, M.D., director of the VCU Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics.

This means we really do have the power to change our mind through the choices we make!

Source: Eurekalert. Virginia Commonwealth University study: We are what we experience. Life experiences influence set point for anxiety and depression October 5, 2011.

Probiotics for Acute Upper Respiratory Infections

Medscape's Week in Review recently published the 2011 Game Changers in Primary Care. Number 9 of 10 was the use of probiotics to aid in treatment of upper respiratory tract infections and preventing the overuse of antibiotics! We are getting there!

A Cochrane Review published in September[2] suggested that probiotics were better than placebo in reducing the number of participants experiencing episodes of acute upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and reducing antibiotic use. This indicates that probiotics may be more beneficial than placebo for preventing acute URTIs. However, the results have some limitations and there were no data for older people.

The study was also one of the top 5 accessed this year by primary care physicians through the McMaster Premium Literature Service and received 6 out of 7 stars for clinical relevance.
The Cancer Screening Issue: On the Negative Side

Another major game changer is the US Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) lowering the recommendations of screening of PSA, cervical cancer, and CSA:

The recommendations from the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) in 2009 that limited mammography screening[7] caused great controversy among medical societies[8-10] and among the general population. In 2011, the task force stirred the same pot with 2 more recommendations that discouraged screening for common cancers. In November, a review of the evidence for the USPSTF concluded that prostate-specific antigen-based screening results in small or no reduction in prostate cancer-specific mortality and is associated with harms related to subsequent evaluation and treatments, some of which may be unnecessary. Benefits appeared limited to men younger than 65 years of age.[11] For Medscape news on this issue see Recommendation Against Routine PSA Screening in US.

Less frequent testing for cervical cancer was recommended in 2 separate proposed guidelines issued in October 2011 -- one from the USPTF[12] and the other from the American Cancer Society, working in collaboration with the American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology and the American Society for Clinical Pathology. The 2 sets of guidelines are similar, and both recommend against testing every year, which has been the convention until now; instead, both recommend testing every 3 years for women 21-65 years of age. See the Medscape news article Less Frequent Testing for Cervical Cancer Proposed.

Screening for ovarian cancer with CA-125 also took a hit this year in the PLCO study reported in JAMA.[13] The 13-year study included nearly 80,000 women ranging in age from 55 to 74 years. The women were randomized to receive either 6 years of annual screenings with CA-125 levels along with transvaginal ultrasound for 4 years or to regular usual care. The results were disappointing. The difference in survival between the 2 groups was not statistically significant. Furthermore, the women in the screened group were subjected to more medical interventions, more oophorectomies, and 20% of these women had surgical complications. See the Medscape commentary Screening for Ovarian Cancer: Any Survival Benefit?

Source: Carol Peckham. 2011 Game Changers in Primary Care. Medscape. November 29, 2011.

Other Don't Miss Topics include:

1. The Flu and Blood Type
2. Green Tea and Milk Thistle's Power
3. Probiotics for Baby??!
4. Don't take Aspirin with your Anti-depressants!
5. More, More, More!
Gingerbread Christmas Cookies


1 tablespoon finely ground flaxseed

3 tablespoons hot water

1 ½ cup brown rice flour

1 cup millet flour

1 cup arrowroot flour, plus more for rolling

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (NS & B's omit cinnamon)

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

1 large egg

½ cup molasses

½ cup butter, softened

How to Make it:

To start, mix flaxseed with hot water and set aside for 10-12 minutes. The flax and water will mix and become slightly gelatinous; this will help the texture of the dough later on.

Next, whisk brown rice flour, millet flour, arrowroot flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves in a large bowl until well combined.

In a separate, medium bowl, whisk the egg, molasses and softened butter. Add the flax mixture and stir to incorporate. Pour the wet molasses mixture into the flour bowl and stir until combined and free of lumps. At this point, the dough will be very thick and slightly sticky, but it should form a ball easily.

Roll dough out onto a large sheet of parchment paper and wrap the paper entirely around the dough so that no dough is exposed. Place the wrapped dough in the refrigerator to set for 1 hour. The cold will make the butter harden and thus create a firmer dough.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Once the hour is up, take half of the dough and roll it out about ¼" thick onto a floured surface. Leave the remaining dough in the refrigerator. Pat the top of the dough with a small amount of flour and rub a touch of flour on the rolling pin to prevent sticking. Use a gingerbread, star, or any shaped cookie cutter you like to cut shapes into the dough and line on baking sheets. Leave 2" between cookies on the baking sheet because they do expand while baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are firm to the touch and if tested with a cake tester, would come out clean.

Cool on a cooling rack and serve immediately or keep in a cool dry place for 1-2 days. Cookies can be stored in a sealable glass container in the freezer for up to a month.

Decorating suggestions: If you can have sugar, mix confectioners sugar with (almond, soy, rice or cow's) milk until desired consistency (should be relatively thick) and top with a variation of dried fruit: blueberries, pineapple, cherries or cranberries and mini allergy free chocolate chips!

Source: D'Adamo December 2011 Newsletter.

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Reisa Mehlman

As a New York State Licensed Aesthetician, New York State Licensed Nail Specialist, and the Director of Living Well Healing Arts Center & Spa, Reisa combines her love of spa services and healing arts to achieve optimum skin and nail health, create greater overall wellness and bring forth our optimal, individual beauty.

"I believe that the day spa should be an instant getaway; a place that is quiet without being stuffy, relaxed, elegant and yet entirely comfy. You should feel warm and welcome, surrounded by people who care about you and what they are doing. This is the environment we strive to create at Living Well Healing Arts Center & Spa. Here, you are never just the "next" number; we allow ample time for your services, offer a flexible schedule and can be reached after hours. After all, to me, spa craft is not really a business, it's a lifestyle." Read more...

About Dr. Sarah Lobisco

Dr. LoBisco has been in holistic healthcare for over 10 years. She became interested in holistic medicine when she was able to heal two herniated discs through nutrition, yoga, supplementation, and chiropractic. She has mentored with holistic practices throughout New York, Vermont, and Connecticut. In addition to her Naturopathic and Functional Medical training, Dr. LoBisco has extensive training in a variety of healing modalities, including therapeutic essential oils, nutraceuticals, herbs, whole food supplements, nutritional medicine, and mind-body therapies. She is a graduate of the accredited, four year post-graduate program in Naturopathic Medicine at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. This program includes clinical rotations and a demanding scientific curriculum in integrating conventional and natural medicine. Dr. LoBisco holds her license from the state of Vermont.

Dr. LoBisco has completed her postdoctoral training as a certified functional medicine practitioner. She is also certified in Applied Kinesiology and holds a BA in psychology from SUNY Geneseo. She has contributed as an item writer for the North American Board of Naturopathic Examiners (NABNE)and has several articles that have been published in the Naturopathic Doctor News and Review Digest (NDNR) and the Townsend Letter, both physician- based journals. Dr. LoBisco is also a hired speaker on integrative medical topics for medical professionals.

Dr. LoBisco currently incorporates her training in holistic medical practices and conventional medicine through writing, researching, private practice, and through her independent contracting work for companies regarding supplements, nutraceuticals, essential oils, and medical foods. She has a small, private wellness consultation practice through telephone and Skype. Dr. LoBisco also enjoys continuing to educate and empower her readers through her blogs and social media. Her new book, BreakFree Medicine, is now available on Amazon and through Barnes & Noble. Please inquire here for more specific information.

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