Living Well Blog: Saratoga's Holistic Health Forum

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By Sarah A LoBisco, ND

What's a WHAMs? You'll have to check out my homepage to find out...but it's definitely related to individualized medicine-the functional medicine way!

Below are some articles that support and give evidence to how the enivironment we bath our cells in, via food and lifestyle choices, affect how our genes and cells express themselves-either in health or dis-ease. This is the concept of epigenetics, a field in medicine that is giving people power beyond their genetic destiny.

Fat and Pepper!

Cool! A study on using pepper to burn fat! Eat to burn!

Moreover, a luciferase reporter assay indicated that pipierine significantly represses the rosiglitazone-induced PPARy transcriptional activity. Finally, GST-pull down assays demonstrated that piperine disrupts the rosiglitazone-dependent interaction between PPAR? and coactivator CBP. Genome-wide analysis using microarray further supports the role of piperine in regulating genes associated with lipid metabolism. Overall, these results suggest that piperine, a major component of black pepper, attenuates fat cell differentiation by down-regulating PPARy activity as well as suppressing PPARy expression, thus leading to potential treatment for obesity-related diseases.

- Ui-Hyun Park, Hong-Suk Jeong, Eun-Young Jo, Taesun Park, Seung Kew Yoon, Eun-Joo Kim, Ji-Cheon Jeong, and Soo-Jong Um. Piperine, a Component of Black Pepper, Inhibits Adipogenesis by Antagonizing PPAR? Activity in 3T3-L1 Cells. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 201260 (15), 3853-3860

Obesity and Fish Oil

How what you put in your mouth affects your body's biochemistry. Specifically, eating certain foods trigger brain chemicals that make you crave more or feel good!

Unfortunately, it appears that America's excessive intake of omega-6 fatty acids also stimulates appetite, thanks to the fact that they body uses them to make the appetite-driving endocannabinoids. As we said, the body makes appetite-enhancing endocannabinoids from omega-6 AA, which abounds in beef, pork, and poultry. But the body also makes omega-6 AA from the short-chain omega-6 fat called linoleic acid (LA), which predominates in the most commonly consumed vegetable oils (corn, soy, safflower, sunflower, cottonseed). This sets the stage for the exciting results of Dr. Hibbeln's animal study, which affirms the idea that America's "omega imbalance" promotes overeating and obesity.

-Craig Weatherby . Omega-6 Fats Drive Obesity; Omega-3s Help: Mouse study reported at a conference we attended affirms the idea that America's omega-imbalance promotes obesity and alcohol abuse. Vitalchoice Newsletter. 6/5/12. http://newsletter.vitalchoice.com/e_article002446647.cfm?x=blbcR6f,b1h0JlRD

Individualized Medicine and Racial/Ethnic Differences (Medscape)

Most studies focus on the white male population, but it doesn't account for ethnicity or sex differences. This study did!

Women with GDM are at increased risk for type 2 diabetes in later life. However, results from several randomized trials have demonstrated that increased physical activity and weight loss can reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes among women with a history of GDM;[29] little is known about the effectiveness of such prevention interventions among Asian/Pacific Islander women with a history of GDM, particularly among those with a BMI in the normal range. Some evidence suggests that Asians in general may be more prone to insulin resistance than non-Hispanic blacks or non-Hispanic whites, which may be due to the difference in the distribution of fat stores between the groups and Asians' higher body fat percentages at given BMI levels.[30] Therefore, traditional strategies for decreasing insulin resistance, such as high fiber consumption and increased physical activity, may be especially effective in this population.[31]

To our knowledge, our study provides the first population-based race/ethnicity-specific estimates of the contribution of overweight and obesity to GDM prevalence. Using linked birth certificate and hospital discharge datasets is the best available approach to examine racial/ethnic disparities in the contribution of BMI to GDM risk at the population level.

Our study has limitations. Prepregnancy weight and height were obtained from birth certificates and may not be based on measurements obtained in clinical settings. Estimates of obesity prevalence based on self-reported height and weight tend to be lower than those based on measured height and weight.

-Shin Y. Kim, MPH; Lucinda England, MD, MSPH; William Sappenfield, MD, MPH; Hoyt G. Wilson, PhD; Connie L. Bish, PhD, MPH; Hamisu M. Salihu, MD, PhD; Andrea J. Sharma, PhD, MPH.Racial/Ethnic Differences in the Percentage of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus Cases Attributable to Overweight and Obesity. Florida, 2004-2007. Posted: 05/24/2012; Prev Chronic Dis. 2012;9 © 2012 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/763156

By Sarah A LoBisco, ND

Here's the continuation of my homepage blog on the power of Nurture over Nature!

Curcumin for Cancer Prevention & Cardiovascular Health
If America doesn't start spicing up soon, we are losing out on our health!

Including Curcumin in our diet will have a positive effect on how our genes affect our health. Specifically, this Indian spice works at the cellular level by regulating signals related to inflammation and cellular programming for death (AKA CANCER CELLS)!

Curcumin seems to down-regulate expression of Stat3 and phospho-Stat3 proteins, as well as genes that encode anti-apoptotic signals. In other words, it inhibits cellular signals that under ordinary circumstances prevent malignant cells from going into apoptosis. It also suppresses the binding of NF-KB, a strong inflammatory signal, in two of the three peripheral blood samples. Dr. Zhang said the current data rightfully raise hope that curcumin could play a role in treatment of CTCL, Sezary syndrome, and other hematologic malignancies.

Researchers at the Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg, Germany, believe they have discovered mechanisms by which turmeric exerts its cholesterol-lowering effect. Norbert Nass, MD, and his team looked at the impact of curcumin at doses ranging from 2-50 micromoles on gene expression in human hepatic cells. They found that once the dose exceeds 10 micromoles, curcumin exposure induces an up to seven-fold increase in expression of LDL-receptor mRNA, which, from a functional viewpoint, means a marked increase in hepatic uptake of LDL. The greater the hepatic uptake, the lower the circulating levels of LDL will be, thus reducing potential for atherosclerotic buildup.

Source: Peschel D, Koerting R, Nass N. J Nutr Biochem. 2007; 18 (2): 113-119.
Excerpted from Holistic Primary Care: A Golden Wonder: Turmeric Compounds Trigger Apoptosis in Lymphoma, Lower LDL Cholesterol. By Erik L. Goldman | Editor-in-Chief - Vol. 8, No. 1. Spring, 2007

Ginger and Prostate Cancer (Br J of Nutriton)

Another spice with cancer-punch-out- power:

It is appreciated far and wide that increased and regular consumption of fruits and vegetables is linked with noteworthy anticancer benefits. Extensively consumed as a spice in foods and beverages worldwide, ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) is an excellent source of several bioactive phenolics, including non-volatile pungent compounds such as gingerols, paradols, shogaols and gingerones. Ginger has been known to display anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiproliferative activities, indicating its promising role as a chemopreventive agent. Here, we show that whole ginger extract (GE) exerts significant growth-inhibitory and death-inductory effects in a spectrum of prostate cancer cells. Comprehensive studies have confirmed that GE perturbed cell-cycle progression, impaired reproductive capacity, modulated cell-cycle and apoptosis regulatory molecules and induced a caspase-driven, mitochondrially mediated apoptosis in human prostate cancer cells. Remarkably, daily oral feeding of 100 mg/kg body weight of GE inhibited growth and progression of PC-3 xenografts by approximately 56 % in nude mice, as shown by measurements of tumour volume. Tumour tissue from GE-treated mice showed reduced proliferation index and widespread apoptosis compared with controls, as determined by immunoblotting and immunohistochemical methods. Most importantly, GE did not exert any detectable toxicity in normal, rapidly dividing tissues such as gut and bone marrow. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report to demonstrate the in vitro and in vivo anticancer activity of whole GE for the management of prostate cancer.

Source: Karna P, Chagani S, Gundala SR, Rida PC, Asif G, Sharma V, Gupta MV, Aneja R. Benefits of whole ginger extract in prostate cancer (abstract). Br J Nutr. 2012 Feb;107(4):473-84. Epub 2011 Aug 18. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21849094

Death by Skin
Showing how our choices in beauty affect our risk for diseases: 

  • Recent research found higher concentrations of parabens in the upper quadrants of the breast and axillary area, where antiperspirants are usually applied, suggesting they may contribute to the development of breast cancer. One or more paraben esters were detected in 99 percent of the tissue samples collected from mastectomies. In 60 percent of the samples, all five paraben esters were present
  • Overall, topical application of personal care products containing parabens appear to be the greatest source of exposure to these estrogen-mimicking chemicals, far surpassing the risk of the aluminum in antiperspirants
  • Aluminum chloride--the active ingredient in antiperspirants--has been found to act similarly to the way oncogenes work to provide molecular transformations in cancer cells. Like parabens, aluminum salts also mimic estrogen, and bioaccumulate in breast tissue, which can raise your breast cancer risk
  • Despite the fact that parabens are used in such a wide variety of products, their safety is primarily based on a rat study from 1956, as modern toxicology studies are lacking, and not a single study on the chemicals' carcinogenity follow acceptable regulatory standard carcinogenity study protocols, according to a recent review
  • Estrogens, whether synthetic or natural are a primary risk factor for breast cancer. Approximately 20 different studies have established that parabens have estrogenic activity, which makes them relevant when it comes to estrogen-sensitive cancers. A common excuse used to defend the absence of toxicological studies is that parabens are weak in terms of potency. For example, propylparaben and butylparaben are approximately 30,000 and 10,000 less potent than estradiol, respectively.
"However, estradiol occurs in breast tissue in the pictogram per gram of tissue range... but the results reported by Barr et.al. [the featured study] show tissue concentrations of parabens, in the worst cases, in the microgram per gram of breast tissue range, which is one million-fold higher than that of estradiol. Clearly, the magnitude of exposure would seem to more than compensate for the reduction in potency," Harvey and Everett write.
But that's not all. A 2011 study reported that methylparaben promotes cell cycling and makes human breast cells more resistant to apoptosis, which, according to the authors can provide the molecular basis for malignant tumor proliferation. Harvey and Everett also cite another study from 2007, which found that propylparaben and butylparaben cause detectable DNA damage.

Source: Dr. Mercola. May 24, 2012. 99% of Breast Cancer Tissue Contained This Everyday Chemical (NOT Aluminum). http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/05/24/parabens-on-risk-of-breast-cancer.aspx?e_cid=20120524_DNL_art_1

Read more at: www.dr-lobisco.com


In my recent blog (http://www.dr-lobisco.com/functional-medicine-testing-why-test/), I discussed the importance of treatment tailored to the individual vs. the individual tailored to a one-sized-fits all approach. The solution for me is a combination of using Naturopathic Medicine (address the cause) with functional medicine (address biochemical individuality and which natural treatment will be optimal for THAT individual). Below are two highlights from the Metametrix Institute, a functional lab that I use in my practice:

A New Measurement for Autism (Metametrix Blog, Dr. Fitzgerald)

One key intervention for both boys that resulted in a significant reduction of behavioral symptoms was the removal of bovine dairy and gluten-containing grains. Both are big problems for many kids with ASD, and their removal is a common first step.

The older boy recently started a trial of high-dose folinic acid (1mg/kg body weight). This intervention appears to have made a remarkable difference in him. Both parents noted that rather quickly after starting, his expressive language greatly improved--he began articulating his needs and desires--in a way he's never done before. (In all fairness, we cannot rule out benefit from his various other treatments. This trial, like life, wasn't controlled.)

Given the above history, and the favorable folinic acid trial, is it possible for us to form a hypothesis around a potential causative factor in this case? Yes we can. I strongly suspect that Cerebral Folate Deficiency is an underlying etiologic factor with these boys. Here's why:

The article continues on to explain how various individual bio-markers are tested to tailor an approach that suited each brother. 
Watch this Video by Dr. Lord from Metametrix on Alternative Testing for Autism (Metametrix)

This 8 minute video explains the gut-brain connection and how inflammation in the brain can affect the features of autism.

Link: http://www.metametrix.com/learning-center/podcasts/2010/autism-and-laboratory-testing-%281%29?utm_source=World+Autism+Awareness+Day+04.12+FINAL&utm_campaign=Autism+Day+04.12&utm_medium=email

The above highlights the importance of not just addressing the cause, or treating symptoms, but addressing the individual. After all, it is more important to know what kind of person has the disease, than what disease has the person.

Fun Fact for Oil Lovers:

A highlight on Rosemary's ability to boost brain function!

Rosemary EO for mood (Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology )

Here we show for the first time that performance on cognitive tasks is significantly related to concentration of absorbed 1,8-cineole following exposure to rosemary aroma, with improved performance at higher concentrations. Furthermore, these effects were found for speed and accuracy outcomes, indicating that the relationship is not describing a speed-accuracy trade off.  The relationships between 1,8-cineole levels and mood were less pronounced, but did reveal a significant negative correlation between change in contentment and plasma 1,8-cineole levels.

Conclusion: These findings suggest that compounds absorbed from rosemary aroma affect cognition and subjective state independently through different neurochemical pathways. (Moss, M. Plasma 1,8-cineole correlates with cognitive performance following exposure to rosemary essential oil aroma (abstract). Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology. February 24, 2012. 2045125312436573.)http://tpp.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/02/24/2045125312436573.abstract

More info: http://shirleyprice.blogspot.com/2012/03/rosemary-for-remembrance.html

1. My latest Blog is posted!

Learn More about the Mind-Mood-Food-Weight Connection 

Here's an excerpt:

I wrote in a previous blog how the brain can become addicted to food, just like any other substance. Recent evidence is that food is not just about nutrients or calories, but about programming our body for health. In his recent article, Dr. Hyman explains the connection:

Food literally talks to our genes. Food is not just a source of calories, it is also a source of INFORMATION.

The key is to send the right information to your genes by eating whole, real, food -- mostly plants. Specific nutrients or plant compounds bind to receptors in cells, translating messages from the foods we eat or vitamins we take in into instructions that are carried out by our cells through their effect on our DNA.

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.

2. Natural Medicine Tool Kit Highlighted

In my clinic, I recommend the use of therapeutic essential oils to ease the effects of acute conditions. I also suggest various emotional blends to support the mind-body connection of each individual 

For those who wish to learn more, a new AUDIO FILE is now available through August which reviews the properties and uses of various essential oils:

Listen  here to "E7 for Beginners and Experts" (38 minutes)
By: Doug Corrigan and Karen Boren

Some highlights:

Oils have a variety of uses. Therapeutic, Grade A essential oils help to bring the body back into balance, are easy to use (topical and internal applications), and help emotional well-being. For example, lemon and citrus oils can be used for anxiety and are also helpful for digestive and liver health.

Peppermint oil is antispasmodic, helps to relieve gas (Carminative), is anti-inflammatory, nerve supporting, and modulates peristalsis.

Purification neutralizes all stings and toxins of critters.

Learn more about the science of essential oils here.

If you wish to learn more about the uses of essential oils, you may contact Terry Quigley, an independent consultant and the distributor I refer to. You can sign up for Terry's newsletter at:  tquigley1@nycap.rr.com.

Here is an excerpt from a recent newsletter:

Did you know that Lemon oil has many traditional uses?

Lemon has antiseptic-like properties and contains compounds that have been studied for their effects on immune function. According Jean Valnet, M.D., the vaporized essence of lemon can kill meningococcus bacteria in 15 minutes, typhoid bacilli in one hour, Staphylococcus aureus in two hours, and Pneumococcus bacteria within three hours. Even a 0.2% solution of lemon oil can kill diphtheria bacteria in 20 minutes and inactivate tuberculosis bacteria. Lemon oil has been widely used in skin care to cleanse skin and reduce wrinkles. It promotes clarity of thought and purpose, as well as health, healing, physical energy, and purification. Its fragrance is invigorating, enhancing, and warming. Lemon has been shown to have antidepressant effects in research done by Komori, et al.,1995. It may also help brighten a pale, dull complexion by removing the dead skin cells. It serves as an effective insect repellent and works well in removing gum, wood stain, oil, and grease spots.

3. ****New Links on my website include:

In the Resource section: Problems with mold and remediation efforts, air purifier links

In the Vaccination Resource section: Vaccination updates

4. The Run For Naturopathic Medicine- Get involved in Spreading the Word J

Mission Statement: To educate and empower Americans about natural health care options to prevent disease, find and treat the cause of illness, and revitalize the nation's health.

Weeks one and two of The Run are in the bag.  Despite 95 degree + weather and RV challenges, the running team is truly Moving Natural Medicine Forward and so far bringing options in health care to towns from San Francisco to Winnemucca.  Thanks to Carl Hangee Bauer in San Francisco, Karyn Wagner with ITI, Tara Levy in Lafayette and the doctors at Marin Natural Medicine Clinic, Dr. Todd Maderis and Dr. Sally Lamont, we enjoyed a successful first leg of our journey with lots of celebrations along the way.

You can read more at the Run
blog and donate to the cause at TheRun.org or follow it on Facebook and Twitter.

Now share your thoughts....

How does your mood affect your food choices?

What are your experiences with essential oils? 

 

The connection between EMFs and Cancer has been disputed for years. However, the evidence is now piling up.

In my latest blog, I discuss this connection and give suggestions on how to still stay connected as you protect your brain!

Read more here.

And.....in a related mind topic, what can protect our brain and keep our moods stable? Fish oil! According to a study done on addictive, bi-polar MICE (yes, I wrote that correctly):

The researchers also found correlations between mouse brain molecular changes and molecular markers in their blood, so called "biomarkers."

"There is now substantial evidence at the molecular level that omega-3 fatty acids work on the brain in ways similar to psychiatric drugs," said Dr. Niculescu. "With these biomarker findings, we can now move forward as a field and do more targeted clinical studies in humans."

An Update on Radiation Effects: The Power of Antioxidants

There continues to be confusion about the after effects of the tragedy in Japan. In my recent blog, I review the concern over radiation and the power of antioxidants in protecting the body from it. I also give other suggestions on coping with this and other life stressors.

Here's an excerpt:

In this blog, I hope to remind everyone that the most potent and protective thing we can do for ourselves is to keep ourselves healthy from the inside out. If the main focus is all about killing the bugs, eradicating the tumors, beating the diseases, and isolating ourselves from harm, we create a feed forward cycle of stress with its detrimental bodily effects.

In all this drama and hype, the internal healing power of nature is often overlooked. I do believe that when you give the body what it needs balance and healing result. Therefore the answers lie in educating ourselves on simple, safe, generalized, and individualized solutions. Panicking and isolating ourselves into little bubbles doesn't empower us or put much faith in the universal design. We need to focus on building up from the inside, not on becoming weaker with fear and creating larger barriers.

Vitamn D Thoughts: What Most Don't Consider

Many of you are aware how I feel about "the panacea" and new supplement cure-alls. A recent journal abstract highlighted this viewpoint with the vitamin superstar, vitamin D:

Conclusion: D3 is approximately 87% more potent in raising and maintaining serum 25(OH)D concentrations and produces 2- to 3-fold greater storage of vitamin D than does equimolar D2. For neither was there evidence of sequestration in fat, as had been postulated for doses in this range. Given its greater potency and lower cost, D3 should be the preferred treatment option when correcting vitamin D deficiency.

It's not that the study found evidence to support the use of D3 over D2 that I found interesting; most of us know that by now. What intrigued me was that another major point, often overlooked. This study measured and discussed the storage of D3 in fat, a factor that isn't commonly adjusted for when monitoring this vitamin.

I do believe that most of the population are likely deficient in vitamin D due to poor conversion of it in the liver and kidneys. This is from these organs being on overload from detoxifying environmental stressors and medications. Furthermore, those on statins will need to supplement, as these medications prevents the conversion of cholesterol to vitamin D3. Therefore, it's true that most people will benefit from supplementing with Vitamin D.

Still, I'd like to propose some questions for you. Are we over supplementing? And, what will be the downstream effect of using a vitamin like a drug--just treating the numbers on the labs and not the person? Why not look for the cause first of low Vitamin D3 and then adjust and supplement as needed? Let's also consider that our form of measurement might not be as accurate as we believe. Some things to ponder.

Reference:

Heany, R. et al. Vitamin D3 is more potent than D2 in humans (abstract). J Clin Endocrinol Metab, Vol. 96 (3): 447-452
doi:10.1210/jc.2010-2230

This week's blog highlights the the tast of sweet. As spring FINALLY reaches Saratoga, the taste of sweetness comes with it.

Here's an excerpt:

Contrary to popular perception, splenda is not a wise or safe natural alternative. Did you know this sweetener could be affecting your medication! One study showed how splenda reduced beneficial microflora in the gut and increased fecal pH, while also affecting the bioavailability of drugs.

Evidence indicates that a 12-wk administration of Splenda exerted numerous adverse effects, including (1) reduction in beneficial fecal microflora, (2) increased fecal pH, and (3) enhanced expression levels of P-gp, CYP3A4, and CYP2D1, which are known to limit the bioavailability of orally administered drugs. PMID: 18800291


Just Say No to Aspartame (Dr. Mercola)

Aside from very large and obvious tumors, Victoria also observed a wide range of other adverse effects in her aspartame-fed rats, including:

Neurological effects: difficulty walking, falling over

Paralysis

Torticollis (also known as wryneck: neck stiffness associated with muscle spasms, resulting in tilting your head to one side)

Symptoms of cerebral palsy

Eye disorders: infected eyes, bleeding, blindness, bulging eyes

Skin disorders: lesions, thinning and yellowing of fur

Obesity

Interestingly, she also found evidence suggesting genetic damage.

Sucralose, a non-caloric sweetener, can affect the guts' hormonal signaling response. This sweetener was found to suppress glucagon-like peptide (GLP)-1 secretion and peptide YY (PYY). This affects insulin secretion and appetite control, and could explain why these sweeteners may cause long term weight gain. (GLP-1 is a hormone targeted by diabetic drugs to lower blood glucose levels)

Conclusions: At this dose, oral ingestion of sucralose does not increase plasma GLP-1 or PYY concentrations and hence, does not reduce appetite in healthy subjects. Oral stimulation with sucralose had no effect on GLP-1, insulin or appetite. PMID: 21245879


Fructose=Fat


Dr. Mercola summarizes how processed foods with hydrogenated oils that contain fructose cause various health issues.

As described in Taube's brilliant New York Times article, a calorie from glucose, such a potato or bread, is vastly different from a calorie from sugar (which is a 50/50 mix of glucose and fructose, or in the case of high fructose corn syrup, a 45/55 mix.) This is because they are metabolized differently, and hence affect your body in different ways.

As I've explained before, fructose (whether from regular sugar of HFCS) is metabolized primarily by your liver, whereas glucose is metabolized in every cell of your body. Making matters worse, when you consume fructose in liquid form, such as soda, the effect is not only sped up but also magnified.

Your liver converts the majority of this fructose into FAT.

Additionally, since all sugars raise your insulin levels, you eventually end up with insulin resistance. In response, your pancreas starts releasing higher amounts of insulin in an effort to curb your rising blood sugar levels. Eventually, your pancreas loses the battle; your blood sugar levels keep rising, and you end up with full-blown diabetes.

You've now also laid the groundwork for hypertension, heart disease, and cancer, just to name a few.


Additionally, sugar/fructose:

Leads to insulin resistance, which is not only an underlying factor of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, but also many cancers.

Researchers from the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer have reported that those who are obese and/or diabetic are at greater risk of cancer.

Tricks your body into gaining weight by fooling your metabolism, as it turns off your body's appetite-control system.

Fructose does not appropriately stimulate insulin, which in turn does not suppress ghrelin (the "hunger hormone") and doesn't stimulate leptin (the "satiety hormone"), which together result in your eating more and developing insulin resistance.

Fructose rapidly leads to weight gain and abdominal obesity ("beer belly"), decreased HDL, increased LDL, elevated triglycerides, elevated blood sugar, and high blood pressure--i.e., classic metabolic syndrome.

Fructose metabolism is very similar to ethanol metabolism, which has a multitude of toxic effects, including NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease). It's alcohol without the buzz.

What about Sugar?? Well, it's more of a non-food that robs your body of minerals and causes you to crave more and more as it packs on pounds from its addictive stimulation on dopamine receptors. Remember my newsletter on food addiction?

I also discuss "How to Enjoy Food in an Addictive Food Society?"

As a Naturopathic Doctor, I know that food is a source of pleasure, enjoyment, entertainment, and can effect emotions. Some people can become addictive or dependent on foods or substances due to the fact that food can and dose have biological effects, as Dr. Hyman highlighted.

In treatment plans, I even use particular diets and food plans for treating various conditions, such as toxicity, yeast, and hormonal imbalances. Still, it's important to remember that the emotional connection of making things "good" or "bad" have a negative effect on the body, due to its effects on stress biochemistry. It's important to have compassion for yourself.

Read more here.

There are so many factors to take into consideration when one is detoxifying. In my latest blog on my website, I discuss these individual variations. Here's an excerpt:

The health status and dietary intake of individuals affect the ability of the liver to clear out damaging environmental poisons. Specifically, deficiencies in certain nutrients can create a sluggish clearance or create excess free radical damage, harming various tissue structures. If the body is deprived of key amino acids and nutrients, toxins will not be able to be bound for removal through the digestive tract. Fasting can cause issues for this reason because amino acids are needed in the second phase of detoxification of the liver. Without adequate protein, the body experiences "detox symptoms" as toxins float happily through your bloodstream.

Other factors which influence detoxification include digestive health, medications, health history, immune status, and stress. This is why it's important to get individualized attention when one is considering a detoxification protocol. Consulting with someone who is knowledgeable about detoxification, chelation, and pathology is important in determining which detoxification or cleansing support to use and when.

The best idea would be to find a health care practitioner who can implement all the above detoxification factors with a supportive post detoxification program, in order to sustain the lifestyle modifications needed to keep one healthy. I have also found that neurotransmitter support or mind-body techniques are very helpful in implementing change and dealing with cravings.

The concern I have over most detoxification protocols is that they typically don't take into account one's own unique biochemistry, health status, detoxification power, and environmental exposure. I have been offering this individualized technique to detoxification in my practice with great success. In fact, most of the time, mild cleansing and liver support are implemented to support most chronic or current conditions.

Here's what my clients are reporting:

1. More Energy

2. Better Health

3. A feeling of being supported in their health in this toxic world, by supporting their body from the inside

4. Weight loss

5. More emotional balance, freedom, and joy (when your body is healthy, so is your life!)

To read more about detoxification and my individualized program, click here.

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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...


Dr. Sarah Lobisco

Whether the goal is to lessen pain, find an alternative to pharmaceuticals, or improve your quality of life, Dr. LoBisco's Naturopathic Medicine lets you get the best of both worlds conventional medicine, combined with safe and proven complementary therapies.

Dr. Sarah LoBisco has been involved in wellness for over 8 years. Her experience includes mentoring with holistic practices throughout New York, Vermont, and Connecticut. Read more...