Living Well Blog: Saratoga's Holistic Health Forum

Naturopathic Top Read Picks--CONNECTIONS!


One thing I love about functional and naturopathic medicine is the belief that everything in the body is connected. This week's fun facts provide some fun examples!

Specifically, I highlight three top read picks that include:

  1. The Sugar-Cancer Connection

  2. The Immune-Brain Connection

  3. The Environmental-Heart Connection

Read on to learn more.....

Low Sugar Diet Can Starve Cancer Cells (UCLA)

The following excerpt explains how low sugar diets protect against cancer growth:

Now, in a unique study, a UCLA research team led by Thomas Graeber, a professor of molecular and medical pharmacology, has investigated the reverse aspect: how the metabolism of glucose affects the biochemical signals present in cancer cells.

In research published June 26 in the journal Molecular Systems Biology, Graeber and his colleagues demonstrate that glucose starvation -- that is, depriving cancer cells of glucose --activates a metabolic and signaling amplification loop that leads to cancer cell death as a result of the toxic accumulation of reactive oxygen species, the cell-damaging molecules and ions targeted by antioxidants like vitamin C.

Source: Marcus, J. Glucose deprivation activates feedback loop that kills cancer cells, UCLA study shows. 6/26/12.

Immune System Health Linked to Alzheimer's Risk (Eurekalert)

Here's another neat research report on how the immune system may affect cognitive function! Read on:

Recent work in mice suggested that the immune system is involved in removing beta-amyloid, the main Alzheimer's-causing substance in the brain. Researchers have now shown for the first time that this may apply in humans.

Researchers at the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Exeter with colleagues in the National Institute on Aging in the USA and in Italy screened the expression levels of thousands of genes in blood samples from nearly 700 people. The telltale marker of immune system activity against beta-amyloid, a gene called CCR2, emerged as the top marker associated with memory in people.

Professor David Melzer, who led the work, commented: "This is a very exciting result. It may be that CCR2-associated immunity could be strengthened in humans to slow Alzheimer's disease, but much more work will be needed to ensure that this approach is safe and effective".

Gould, A. Immune system may protect against Alzheimer's changes. Eurekalert. une 15, 2012.

The Real Contributors to Heart Disease (Holistic Primary Care)

Finally, here's some excerpts from one of my online journals regarding some not so common considerations of heart disease.

Bisphenol A (BPA): This compound, used in the manufacture of plastic food containers and can liners, has insulinogenic effects on human islet cells at very low doses. It can modulate insulin secretion in microgram, and even nanogram concentrations. Several investigators have linked BPA to increased risk of CVD, diabetes and liver dysfunction (Lang IA, JAMA. 2008;300(11):1303-10. Rej R, Carpenter DO. Environ Health Perspect. 2007 Oct;115(10):1442-7). This is in addition to BPA's documented estrogenic effects.

Lead: Lead exposure, even as low as 2 mcg/dl, is associated with a 55% increase in CVD, an 89% increase in myocardial infarction and a 151% increase in stroke. What's really disturbing is that an estimated 39% of the US population has serum lead levels in the range that increases risk (Menke A, et al. Circulation. 2006; 114(13): 1388-94)

Latent Celiac Disease & Leaky Gut: People with latent celiac disease, characterized by positive antibodies or inflammation without villous atrophy, have a 19-35% increased risk of developing CVD. Likewise, people with the so-called "leaky gut syndrome" are also at increased risk.

Endotoxemia & Altered Gut Flora: At first glance it might seem like a stretch that the microbial ecosystem within the GI tract could increase cardiometabolic risk, but a growing body of data is showing just that (Tsai F, Coyle WJ. Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2009 Aug;11(4):307-13).

Artificial Sweeteners: The risk of obesity increases 200% with regular use of artificial sweeteners, and the risk of diabetes increase by 67%, said Dr. Hyman. People who use non-nutritive, non-sugar sweeteners may consume fewer "calories" but they tend to gain more weight because the perception of having consumed sugar still triggers insulin release and the full cascade of fat-storage signals. Heavy consumption of artificially-sweetened sodas has been linked to increased abdominal fat and to increased risk of stroke.

Goldman, E. Not-So-Obvious Cardiometabolic Risk Factors Worth Considering. Holistic Primary Care. June 28, 2012.



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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.

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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 is a candidate for certification in Functional Medicine through the Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM). Dr. LoBisco 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 upcoming book, BreakFree Medicine, is set to release within the next year. Please inquire here for more specific information.