As you’re quarantined at home with little to do, here is a fascinating piece of history and health to read.
The 1918 flu pandemic established Chiropractic as a valid healthcare force. The premise of Chiropractic hasn’t changed in the lifetime of the profession: health comes from the overall health of the spine, nervous system and cell health.
The Vagus Nerve:
Vagus nerve, also called X cranial nerve or 10th cranial nerve, is the longest and most complex of the cranial nerves. The vagus nerve runs from the brain through the face and thorax to the abdomen. It is a mixed nerve that contains parasympathetic fibres. The vagus nerve has two sensory ganglia (masses of nerve tissue that transmit sensory impulses): the superior and the inferior ganglia. The branches of the superior ganglion innervate the skin in the concha of the ear. The inferior ganglion gives off two branches: the pharyngeal nerve and the superior laryngeal nerve. The recurrent laryngeal nerve branches from the vagus in the lower neck and upper thorax to innervate the muscles of the larynx (voice box). The vagus also gives off cardiac, esophageal, and pulmonary branches. In the abdomen the vagus innervates the greater part of the digestive tract and other abdominal viscera.
The more you know ✌️
WHY SPINAL BALANCE IS ESSENTIAL
This model shows how beautifully everything is connected. Yes, it’s all connected. That knee pain, chances are its coming from the spine. The foot pain, chances are its coming from the spine. Posture is the window into how the spine is functioning. An unbalanced spine leads to stress on joints, ligaments and muscles often causing unexplained full body aches and pains. These misalignments can also lead to headaches, digestive issues and an overall feeling of poor health.
How do you correct this? A combination of great corrective Chiropractic (most Chiropractors don’t specialize in this), soft tissue re-education, traction, and lifestyle.
Do you have a great Chiropractor on your team?
Healing the gut takes some time, it unfortunately doesn't happen over night. On the bright side, it's not too complicated to figure out how to start the healing process. It does take discipline to commit yourself to a healthier eating program, supplementation, and some lifestyle changes. There are simply 4 R's to follow:
Here is where we begin. This is truly the most important among the 4 R's. As we discussed in the past two posts, there are many factors that play a role in disrupting gut health. Those main sources being stress, unhealthy food and drink choices, and chemicals from medications.
How do we replace? We replace the everyday repetitive stress with time management and spending some ME time to decrease/manage the stress. Next, replace the fast food with healthy foods prepared at home (again pre-plan just a little). Replace the fake processed foods and snacks with healthy fruits, veggies, nuts, etc. Read labels and avoid poor food choices. Also replace the food sources that are highly inflammatory with alternatives. With the Gluten free trend, there are MANY options now available to help you avoid gluten. Same goes for dairy alternatives as well as eggs and nuts. As I mentioned just above, replace some of the medications with all natural supplements, whole foods, and lifestyle changes. The key here is to replace unhealthy stressors in your gut to foods that promote healing.
After you have made the commitment to remove and replace factors in your diet and lifestyle that are unhealthy for your gut, the next step is to repair the damage. Repairing the gut wall is a process. Thankfully the human body is amazingly resilient and SMART! This process can only happen if the stressors are all removed. It is a delicate process that involves healing the gut barrier wall, the villi, and the mucosal layer. Remember from the last blog, 70-80% of our immune system cells live within the gut.
The last step is to re-balance the GI system. While whole foods are imperative to providing nutrition for your GI health, they are typically not enough in the beginning when we are re-balancing the GI tract. The damage to the gut lining makes it difficult to utilize all of the nutrients we digest, especially if the foods are not superior quality. At this phase, reestablishing the micro-flora is paramount through probiotic support. Take a peek at the picture below
Since starting to research this amazingly indepth topic on Gut Health, I have spent a lot of quality time speaking with our supplement companies to see what they officer to patients for gut health and inflammatory healing, and immune support. I was amazed at the amount of literature they were able to produce on this well studied topic. We are excited to have one of our favorite supplement reps in town next week, February 13th, to speak with not just us but also our patients and community about this interesting topic. There is so much to learn about gut health and how it's related to your overall well being. If you would like to hear more about the supplements we offer in the office for detoxification, gut repair supplements, and probiotics, please send me an email and I would be happy to help.
Part I of our health gut series was an introduction into the importance of striving to keep our gut healthy. As we read, gut health is the foundation to our immune system. If we don't take care of our gut health, we disrupt our microdome, which results in damage to the intestinal barrier needed to keep foreign materials out of our blood stream. This leakage of material into our blood stream is also known as Leaky Gut. Lets go back a little bit to address the 4 top struggles that contribute to an unhealthy gut/intestinal/digestive system.
Stress changes our hormonal balance within our bodies. With stress we find increased bowel motility and defecation while at the same time reducing gastric emptying time. Stress induced changes in the bowel motility can result in altered gut pH and nutrient absorption causing bacterial overgrowth which leads to vulnerability to pathogenic organisms. Additionally, mucosal barrier disruptions equating into an over stimulation of the immune system.
The GI tract is exposed to 30-50 TONS of food in the average lifetime. Too many highly processed foods that are devoid of nutrients needed for health are taking over our food industry. Our diets are consisting of too many refined carbohydrates, hydrogenated fatty acids, food preservatives and food additives. Chronic poor eating places a burden on the digestive tract leading to reduced bowel transit time, sluggish detoxification, and increased inflammation.
Drugs (over the counter or prescribed) alter the gut microbia composition. Relying on chemicals comes at a risk of damaging the gut and can be counter intuitive since these drugs have the potential to create future disease development or simply be causing the chronic issues that you are trying to treat. Common examples of medications that do a number on your gut health are:
4) Food Allergies, Sensitivities, & Intolerances
Any of the above can be characterized by any negative reaction to food.
Food Sensitivities are non allergic immune responses to a component(s) of a food, an example is Gluten. The gliadin protein in gluten triggers an immune response causing inflammation along the inner lining of the small intestinal wall.
Food Intolerance is the difficulty digesting certain foods due to a lack of proper enzymes. There is no immune response with a food intolerance, and symptoms are typically limited to diarrhea and/or vomiting. Commonly seen with eggs, milk, and gluten.
Food Allergies affect 3% of our population in the IgE category. There are two types of allergic reactions from the body due to a food allergy, IgE and IgG/IgA.
A little about our IgA, IgE, and IgG immune responses. IgA, IgG and IgE refer to immunoglobulins, or “antibodies.” These antibodies are part of our immune system, and are produced in response to things we come in contact with on a daily basis. Our bodies make antibodies to foreign substances like bacteria and viral cells, but can also respond to foods, dust, dander, and pollen. Antibodies help the body mount an immune system response (“fight”) against foreign invaders. IgA and IgG reactions are known as delayed response reactions, that include food sensitivities, where IgE responses are immediate and are considered a true food allergy. IgA and IgG reactions may not happen immediately, but can take hours to days to show up in your skin or intestines, and cause symptoms related to inflammation like headaches, fatigue, brain fog, or joint pain. People with food intolerance may experience digestive upset like nausea, constipation, or diarrhea, or skin itching and rashes including conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
IgE immediate hypersensitivity reactions are characterized by hives and throat swelling that accompany anaphylactic reactions some people experience when exposed to certain foods. Other symptoms can include wheezing, coughing, a runny nose, vomiting, swelling of the lips or tongue, tearing or redness of the eyes, or even a weak pulse and loss of consciousness. Common foods that trigger IgE reactions are peanuts, shellfish, egg, dairy products, soy, tree nuts, wheat and fish.
So how does your gut health contribute to an autoimmune disease?
Autoimmune disease is on the rise in a major way. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), 23.5 million Americans suffer from a form of an autoimmune disease, but some think that number is actually closer to 50 million. There are at least 80 to 100 different diagnosable autoimmune diseases worldwide, and more are being studied and diagnosed every single day.
We turn back to the relationship of the gut and overall health. Also the gut and our immune system, or lack thereof.
Let's re-familiarize ourselves with the word below...
an imbalance between the types of organism present in a person's natural microflora, especially that of the gut, thought to contribute to a range of conditions of ill health.
Over time, having dysbiosis in your gut microbiome will eventually lead to a leaky gut. If your gut is leaky, food particles, toxins and infections can get through your intestinal lining and into your bloodstream where your immune system detects them as foreign invaders and goes on high alert, attacking them and creating inflammation. One main way inflammation occurs is that the food particles (especially gluten and casein, a protein found in dairy), toxins and infections look very similar to our own body’s cells and our immune system gets confused and accidentally attacks our own tissue, which leads to autoimmunity. This process is called molecular mimicry.
Molecular mimicry is defined as the theoretical possibility that sequence similarities between foreign and self-peptides are sufficient to result in the cross-activation of autoreactive T or B cells by pathogen-derived peptides. (*This is google worthy on a snowy day if you are more interested in autoimmune origins.)
It’s a cycle that works like this:
altered gut microbiome or dysbiosis => leaky gut => food, toxins and infections into bloodstream => immune system attacks body due to molecular mimicry => autoimmune disease.
In March of 2018, Yale University did a study on the gut bacteria in humans and mice. They discovered that certain bacteria in the gut (E. gallinarum) is able to trans-locate outside of the gut into the lymph nodes, liver, and spleen. This bacteria attacked tissues outside of the gut and initiated the production of auto-antibodies and inflammation. It was a theory that these foreign substances that leaked out of the gut and trans-located also invaded the incorrect cell space by Molecular Mimicry.
Dr. Axe that helps to simplify and describe the cycle we start to struggle with when health of our gut starts to decline.
This is a list of symptoms that are the most common with people struggling with poor gut health. It's truly exciting to think that we can start healing many health problems simply with diet. Going back to eating whole foods is understandably not the easiest when McDonald's has your food ready in 2 minutes with barely any clean up, BUT 5, 10, 20+ years from now when you are living with a slew of medical problems and feel miserable every single day you are guaranteed to look back and regret taking the extra time and effort to prevent your problems. Next week we will discuss taking those first steps to heal your gut. I will try to help simplify your plans for eating healthier and simply making better choices for yourself and your family.
ADHD: Real or Fake? Drugs or No Drugs?
You easily have 1 or maybe 100 friends that have their child/children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. You have likely encountered MANY people with different opinions on whether ADHD is even a "real" diagnosis. I'm not here to start a debate or even give you my personal opinions. With October being ADHD awareness month, I thought I would share some startling and exciting new info with everyone.
A little definition and history of ADHD...
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that most often occurs in children, but can also be diagnosed in adulthood. Symptoms of ADHD include:
5 fast facts
This happens to be the most interesting fact to me so far:
The Causes of ADHD
Scientists have not yet identified the specific causes of ADHD. There is evidence that genetics contribute to ADHD. For example, three out of four children with ADHD have a relative with the disorder. Other factors that may contribute to the development of ADHD include being born prematurely, brain injury and the mother smoking, using alcohol or having extreme stress during pregnancy.
So we are treating this condition with some serious drugs, but we really can't confirm where it is coming from or how to treat it safely...hummmmm.
I also found this very interesting. In an article published by Psychology Today, the wrote about why the French don't have ADHD. Here's their article:
Why French Kids Don't Have ADHDFrench children don't need medications to control their behavior.
Posted Mar 08, 2012
In the United States, at least 9 percent of school-aged children have been diagnosed with ADHD, and are taking pharmaceutical medications. In France, the percentage of kids diagnosed and medicated for ADHD is less than .5 percent. How has the epidemic of ADHD—firmly established in the U.S.—almost completely passed over children in France?
Is ADHD a biological-neurological disorder? Surprisingly, the answer to this question depends on whether you live in France or in the U.S. In the United States, child psychiatrists consider ADHD to be a biological disorder with biological causes. The preferred treatment is also biological—psycho stimulant medications such as Ritalin and Adderall.
French child psychiatrists, on the other hand, view ADHD as a medical condition that has psycho-social and situational causes. Instead of treating children's focusing and behavioral problems with drugs, French doctors prefer to look for the underlying issue that is causing the child distress—not in the child's brain but in the child's social context. They then choose to treat the underlying social context problem with psychotherapy or family counseling. This is a very different way of seeing things from the American tendency to attribute all symptoms to a biological dysfunction such as a chemical imbalance in the child's brain.
French child psychiatrists don't use the same system of classification of childhood emotional problems as American psychiatrists. They do not use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or DSM. According to Sociologist Manuel Vallee, the French Federation of Psychiatry developed an alternative classification system as a resistance to the influence of the DSM-3. This alternative was the CFTMEA (Classification Française des Troubles Mentaux de L'Enfant et de L'Adolescent), first released in 1983, and updated in 1988 and 2000. The focus of CFTMEA is on identifying and addressing the underlying psychosocial causes of children's symptoms, not on finding the best pharmacological band-aids with which to mask symptoms.
To the extent that French clinicians are successful at finding and repairing what has gone awry in the child's social context, fewer children qualify for the ADHD diagnosis. Moreover, the definition of ADHD is not as broad as in the American system, which, in my view, tends to "pathologize" much of what is normal childhood behavior. The DSM specifically does not consider underlying causes. It thus leads clinicians to give the ADHD diagnosis to a much larger number of symptomatic children, while also encouraging them to treat those children with pharmaceuticals.
The French holistic, psychosocial approach also allows for considering nutritional causes for ADHD-type symptoms—specifically the fact that the behavior of some children is worsened after eating foods with artificial colors, certain preservatives, and/or allergens. Clinicians who work with troubled children in this country—not to mention parents of many ADHD kids—are well aware that dietary interventions can sometimes help a child's problem. In the U.S., the strict focus on pharmaceutical treatment of ADHD, however, encourages clinicians to ignore the influence of dietary factors on children's behavior.
And then, of course, there are the vastly different philosophies of child-rearing in the U.S. and France. These divergent philosophies could account for why French children are generally better-behaved than their American counterparts. Pamela Druckerman highlights the divergent parenting styles in her recent book, Bringing up Bébé. I believe her insights are relevant to a discussion of why French children are not diagnosed with ADHD in anything like the numbers we are seeing in the U.S.
Drugs, Drugs, and more Drugs
Do you really know what the drugs are that are being used to treat ADHD. So many people just agree to take whatever they are told to give themselves or their children without so much as a second thought. Take a peek at the long list below of medication prescribed for ADHD. My biggest concern is all of the AMPHETAMINES! Wowzers!!!!!
The side effects above are serious, especially for our growing young children. The graph below is real. Is it possible to find new treatments for ADHD that aren't so scary?
Today one of the biggest problems we now face are people stealing and selling these prescription meds to get high. There are teens not only swallowing these pills for fun, but also snorting them and even injecting them. These real and scary facts bring me to a lighter subject, thankfully, and that is diet and supplementation.
Before I share with you some of the latest nutirtional infomation related to ADHD, I do again want to clarify that this is not a controversial post about whether ADHD is real or fake etc. I personally do believe there is just cause to classify ADHD as a legitimate diagnosis. I also believe it is severely over diagnosed and also diagnosed prematurely. Before drugs are pushed, shouldn't we give diet and exercise a chance? Some of these youngsters that we are quick to diagnosis with ADHD eat 90% or more processed foods with most of that being sugar. Lucky Charms for breakfast is not feeding your child's body or brain. You are giving them pure sugar, then asking them to sit still, focus, and not pass out from the post sugar rush coma. Also, the lack of physical exercise these children now get is at an all time high. Some of these children get the most exercise from their day from only recess. The go home, snack, and sit the rest of the afternoon and evening in front of screens. So evaluating the individuals diet and exercise is a very important first step.
Now we look at those whom still struggle after a diet and exercise program was not as successful as needed. Well, the exciting new word is that Magnesium may just be what the doctor needs to order (lol, for realy though).
We are starting to see some great research emerging on the relationship of Magnesium and ADHD.
The following study is one of many to choose from. This one is short and sweet, so I thought I would include it.Magnesium supplementation in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
Magnesium supplementation in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
Author:FaridaEl BazaHeba AhmedAlShahawiSallyZahraRana AhmedAbdelHakim
Under a Creative Commons licenseAbstractBackground
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder with associated mineral deficiency.
Aim To assess magnesium level in ADHD children and compare it to the normal levels in children. Then, to detect the effect of magnesium supplementation as an add on therapy, on magnesium deficient patients.
The study was conducted on 25 patients with ADHD and 25 controls. All subjects had magnesium estimation in serum and hair. ADHD children were further assessed by Wechsler intelligence scale for children, Conners’ parent rating scale, and Wisconsin card sorting test. Then magnesium deficient patients were assigned into 2 groups, those who received magnesium, and those who did not. The difference between the studied groups was assessed by Conners’ parents rating scale and Wisconsin card sorting test.
Magnesium deficiency was found in 18 (72%) of ADHD children. The magnesium supplemented group improved as regards cognitive functions as measured by the Wisconsin card sorting test and Conners’ rating scale. The patients reported minor side effects from magnesium supplementation.
Magnesium supplementation in ADHD, proves its value and safety.
Another Great Article:
Magnesium deficiency is found more frequently in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) than in healthy children. In one study of ADHD children, magnesium deficiency was found in 95 percent of those examined (1). Does this warrant magnesium supplementation for hyperactive children? The answer is yes.
Supplementation with magnesium appears to be especially helpful for alleviating hyperactivity in children (2). In a group of children supplemented with about 200 milligrams (mg) per day of magnesium for six months, there was “an increase in magnesium contents in hair and a significant decrease of hyperactivity” compared to children in the control group who had not been treated with supplemental magnesium (3).
Magnesium Is Safe and It Works
A review that looked at studies done on magnesium for the treatment of ADHD in children concluded that although “studies supported that magnesium is effective for treating ADHD…until further strong evidences for its efficacy and safety are provided, magnesium is not recommended for treating ADHD.” (4) This is typical of modern “evidence-based” medical literature. Some medical professionals will ignore what is already known unless a sufficient number of double-blind randomized studies have been performed. Magnesium supplementation is safe and effective, and it is critically important for children who are deficient.
The safety of magnesium has been well established. There have been no deaths reported from magnesium supplementation. None (5). An overdose of magnesium may result in loose stool. This is temporary, and will go away once dosages are reduced or divided into smaller amounts of magnesium given throughout the day. Magnesium supplementation is safe and it is worth trying, especially when we consider the dangers of ADHD drugs.
ADHD Drugs Are Dangerous
Depending on which ADHD drug is being taken, side effects of overdose include mydriasis, tremors, anxiety, agitation, hyper-reflexia, headache, gastrointestinal upset, combative behavior, confusion, hallucinations, delirium, dizziness, dystonia, insomnia, paranoia, movement disorders, tachycardia hypertension, seizures, and yes, even hyperactivity, the very condition an ADHD drug is supposed to be treating. Oh, and they can kill you (6,7). Even if “fatalities are rare” (7), I imagine this brings little comfort to parents. Moreover, the most common side effects of ADHD drugs, taken as prescribed, are appetite loss, abdominal pain, headaches, sleep disturbances, diminished growth, hallucinations and psychotic disturbances (8). Magnesium produces none of these effects. And even though magnesium is both safe and effective, nowhere in the report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Clinical Practice Guideline for ADHD is magnesium supplementation recommended (8).
When it comes to the potential for kids to die suddenly from taking their prescribed ADHD medication, concerns are dismissed by the AAP with statements like “evidence is conflicting as to whether stimulant medications increase the risk of sudden death” (8). One would hope that with this level of uncertainty about the risk of death, the medical advice would be against the use of ADHD medication. Instead, the recommendation from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is “continue your ADHD treatment as prescribed by a healthcare professional” (9). Just be sure to “talk to your healthcare professional about any questions you may have about ADHD medications.” Well, never has “talking about it” made medication any less dangerous.
Other Benefits of Magnesium
In addition to its effectiveness for treating hyperactivity, magnesium also benefits children in other profound ways: it can help kids sleep better at night, relieve discomfort from sore muscles and growing pains, relieve constipation, reduce anxiety, and reduce headache days (10).
“I have come to the conclusion that everyone could benefit from extra magnesium supplementation.”
– Carolyn Dean, MD, ND
Magnesium and Other Nutrients for ADHD
ADHD is not caused by a drug deficiency. Instead of giving drugs to our children, we should look to the benefits of providing them with optimal nutrition. Children with ADHD may benefit from optimal levels of several nutrients including vitamin D (11), iron (12), niacin (B3), pyridoxine (B6), vitamin C, and omega-3 fatty acids (13). In addition to removing refined sugar from the diet, avoiding artificial food dyes, and providing healthy food, pediatrician Ralph Campbell, MD, recommends a vitamin B complex supplement be given with breakfast, an additional 100 mg of B6 at another meal, and 200 mg or more of magnesium per day for ADHD children (13). Other helpful tips include limiting screen time and increasing exercise, especially in the outdoors.
The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of magnesium for children ages one to three is 80 mg per day. Children ages four to five: 130 mg magnesium per day. By age nine, our government recommends that kids should be getting (at least) 240 mg of magnesium per day. And at age fourteen, between 360 to 410 mg per day. Keep in mind, only about 30 to 40 percent of dietary magnesium is absorbed by the body (14). Remember, too much magnesium in a less-absorbable form can cause loose stool. This side effect can be prevented by reducing the amount of magnesium given and providing it in a more absorbable form. If larger total daily doses of magnesium are required, divide the dose into smaller amounts and give it multiple times throughout the day.
One of my favorite articles you can google if you are more interested comes from The Egyptian Journal of Medical Human Genetics (www.ejmhg.eg.net). Original article title: Magnesium Supplementation in Children with Attention Defect Hyperactivity Disorder May 2015. The article has graphs to show the success with Magnesium supplementation for those with ADHD.
As we dig a little more we do find that other vitamins and minerals are super important also for the management of ADHD.
As a health care provider that strives to help others find the causes of their health care concerns and help treat them, rather than band-aid them, it gives me a lot of positive hope to share this post with you. I hate to see the road to prescription help being the only road possible for people. From the articles above, you know there is no harm that can be done from eating healthier, exercising more regularly, and supplementing your diet with high quality supplements. I have three daughters of my own, I know it is NOT easy to make sure they take extra supplements to fill in those inadequacies that we have from our diet. I will say this though, our supplement companies that we carry do an AMAZING job of supplying us with kid friendly supplements. We try each and every supplement ourselves to know how they taste. The most excited and newest addition to Standard Process, one of our supplement suppliers, is the new Magnesium
These make me SO excited!!!! This is such a easier way to get your Magnesium, plus it's kid friendly. This was just released and we were able to get a sneak peek preview and taste about a month ago. Not going to lie, it looks a wheee bit like grass, but it taste great. You can easily add a stick to a simple water bottle on the go, or in your other shakes. I am going to add a little more info about it below.
E-Z Mg™ is a plant-based, multiform magnesium (Mg) developed to support patients with inadequate dietary magnesium intake. Made from two key ingredients: Swiss chard (beet leaf) and buckwheat – both grown on our sustainable and certified organic farm in Wisconsin.
The plant-based, multiform magnesium in E-Z Mg™ may be absorbed by the body the way nature intended.
The naturally occurring multiform magnesium in E-Z Mg™ is not expected to contribute to gastrointestinal side effects that are common in other forms of magnesium supplements. Also, recent findings show our plant-based magnesium exhibits significantly higher levels of ionized magnesium in cerebrospinal fluid after only 14 days after administration.Why is There a Gap in Dietary Magnesium Intake?
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is high in processed foods and carbohydrates, low in vitamins and minerals. This inadequate daily intake of plant materials helps contribute to magnesium deficiency.3 Data also suggests that produce - especially vegetables - has experienced a decline in mineral content over the last century.4
Key IngredientsE-Z Mg™ consists of extracts of two key ingredients: organic dried Swiss chard (beet leaf) juice and organic dried buckwheat (aerial parts) juice delivering 85mg of elemental magnesium. The PRAL value in each serving is estimated at -8.9mEq which may help promote urine and whole-body alkalization.
The following are three great and highly recommended Supplements for your kiddos:
Catalyn Chewable contains vital nutrients from whole foods and other sources.*
Congaplex Chewable is used for short-term support of the immune system.*
Tuna Omega 3 Chewable delivers essential omega-3 fatty acids*
Please don't hesitate to stop by the office and ask about the supplements we carry and how we can help you.
So whats the scoop with supplements? Are they legit? Do they really work? Where does a person even start?
There are so many supplements on the market from just as many companies. Everything in the supplement isle at your local health foods store or even Walmart can be so confusing and overwhelming. As many of you know, if one random company "claims" to have a new supplement for weight loss, that supplements literally seems to spontaneously combust on the shelves. The problem within the vitamin and supplement industry is their regulation and lack of quality ingredients and even information/education for that matter. Vitamins and supplements are regulated as foods, not drugs. The FDA doesn't evaluate the quality of the supplements or assess their effects on the body. It's imperative to find a high quality and respectable company.
Supplements not Replacements
Carrying over from last week, I do support taking vitamins/minerals and supplements. I think it is extremely hard to incorporate a vastly rich diet that gives our bodies all of the necessary vitamins it needs. One has to be diligent on eating extremely clean, with a source of food from top organic growers of plants and animals. Our main stream diets today are hugely lacking in vitamin and mineral content, not to mention our lifestyles do a number on their convenience. Supplements are just as the word implies, they supplement our dietary needs, they DO NOT replace our diet. As a health care provider, I tell everyone including you, for the purpose of safety of your supplements, you should have a blood draw to see if you are in need of certain vitamins and minerals in your diet.
This post is NOT intended to sell you anything at all, please let me make that clear. I would like to share with you which supplements I personally take and why over the next few weeks. After that, I'll add information on different supplements that I find important for a variety of conditions. I will be honest, I strictly stick to 2 different companies for my supplement suppliers, OrthoMolecular Products and Standard Process. Both of these companies have shown me the most viable research to their products and hold the highest standard of quality for each supplement. The two companies are different in that OrthoMolecular produces products in a bio-molecular form for digestion, and Standard Process solely uses whole foods in their formulations. Both companies hold such high standards for their products that they can only be purchased with a health care license. They produce very specific formulas that are rich in quality, not full of fillers and junk. These products use carriers/specialized ingredients to assure that the body will absorb the supplement to its fullest. When you see a comparison to these products to those on the shelves at your local store, you'll be amazed by the fact that those companies at the local stores can even sell what they are attempting to get out to the consumer.
The SP Detox Protein shake is one of my favorites and a go-to for my protein shakes. I probably use this shake roughly 1-2x/week. It has whopping 17g of plant based protein from completely organic sources. The purpose of this shake is to help eliminate toxins. We face toxins all day everyday in all that we do. I like the peace of mind knowing that I'm doing all I can to help eliminate those unhealthy threats to my body. Side note, the Chai flavor is out of bounds good!
So besides being part of a Detox program, as I mentioned, I use the SP C Detox shake as a supplemental protein shake also. My 2 cents on protein shakes: not everyone needs a protein shake just because they are working out and trying to get into shape. If you are eating enough protein and getting your macoros and more importantly MICROS daily, there is not a need for extra in a shake. In regards to using this shake and other shakes for uses other than Detox, please evaluate if needed. For myself, I know I burn a lot of calories in my training. In order for me not to lose condition, keep my immune system strong, and support my dietary needs, I do incorporate shakes about 4-5 days out of the week or more dependent on activity level.
OrthoMolecular is spot on with their shakes also. This company has gone even further to formulate shakes for different needs. They are the following:
MitoCore: Stimulates mitochondria and recharges cellular energy, strengthens immune function, and increases detoxification.
Calories: 120, Fat 3g, Carbs 7g (fiber 1g/sugars 3g), PROTEIN 15g
InflammaCore: Enhanced G.I. barrier function, mucosal cell regeneration, supports a healthy inflammatory response
Calories: 200, Fat 6g, Carbs 12g (4g fiber/8g sugars), PROTEIN 19g
GlycemaCore: Supports healthy blood sugar levels, increases insulin sensitivity, and improves metabolism plus supports weight management.
Calories: 150, Fat 3.5g, Carbs 17g (12g fiber/sugars 2g), PROTEIN 10g
LifeCore Complete: Clean and diverse blend of plant based protein, supports healthy weight management, and promotes a feeling of fullness plus reduces cravings.
Calories: 210, Fat 7g, Carbs 12g (4g fiber/2g sugars), PROTEIN 20g
My two favorites include the MitrCore and the LifeCore. The fun factor to their supplements are the flavors. The MitoCore has 2 flavors: strawberry and lemon, both are amazingly tasty and a great change from your basic chocolate and vanilla. The LifeCore truly hits the mark when you are super hungry after a tough workout and need to grab a protein rich snack mid-day.
My personal arsenal for supplements. As a soon to be 40yr old athlete, I have spent some time digging to see what supplements can help me function day to day better along with helping me preform and recover on a fitness level. My two most important supplements include OrthoMoleculars OrthoMega and Orthobiotic.
The OrthoMega is the in the top two of the highest quality fish oil I have found. Each gelcap provides 820mg of EPA and DHA as natural triglycerides. Vitamin E and rosemary extract were added to their formula to ensure maximum purity and freshness. This supplement above all is the most important to have on your self. If you have been in the dark about the importance of fish oil in your diet and the many health benefits, I strongly encourage you to do your research.
Second on my list is the OrthoBiotic. I plan to devote another blog post to the massive importance of gut/intestinal health, so I'm not going to linger here for too long. This supplement is a very high quality probiotic. Gut health is directly proportional to health gut bacteria. Low good gut bacteria = lowered ability to absorb nutrients = lowered immune system. Another topic to spend some time researching if you are unfamiliar with gut health and probiotics.
Supplements for the Aging Athlete
As an athlete, the last thing I like to admit while rounding 40 is that I am aging and it hurts...literally. It's true, after our youthful peak in our twenties everything starts to slow down. Those delightful hormones that kept us youthful start to decline. It wasn't until this past couple of years that I really started to feel my age during workouts and especially during recovery. I believe I eat healthy, a lot of whole foods, and I workout regularly. These are sometimes just not enough in my personal opinion. So I will share with you what I like to take on a regular basis to help me feel better and function at where I want to be in my fitness.
My List of OrthoMolecular Supplements for myself, the aging athlete:
CoQ-10: Coenzyme Q-10 is a pro enzyme produced naturally in the body. It plays a critical role in energy (ATP) production, and is one of the most powerful lipid-soluable antioxidants that prevents lipid and mitochondrial DNA oxidation. CoQ10 naturally decreases with age.
DHEA: or dehydroepiandrosterone is a steroid hormone precursor that promotes healthy hormone levels and supports our bodies stress response system. DHEA is an important counterpart to the stress hormone cortisol. It helps provide an inflammatory balance and protection to brain tissues, along with supporting healthy aging, mood regulation, memory, and bone density.
Collogen: This supplement combines hyaluronic acid (HA), Type I collagen, Type II collagen bioactive peptides, mucopolysaccharides, and vitamin C to stimulate collagen regeneration and support joint health. Lifestyle factors and aging reduce the elasticity in tendons and ligaments, which leads to soft tissue and joint discomfort.
MSM: Helps to promote new cells and tissues, naturally supporting soft tissue health and regeneration. Significantly supports connective tissue health and maintains normal inflammatory balance. MSM is a natural compound that provides a high concentration of sulfur. This boosts the body's antioxidant mechanisms, supports detoxification pathways, and strengthens the immune system. MSM naturally decreases with age.
AminoComplex: A blend of all 9 essential amino acids (EAA's) plus the most commonly deficient conditionally essential amino acids that become essential during stress, disease, and poor diet. Optimal amino acid intake is essential for supporting muscle strength, immunity, gastrointestinal health, and neurotransmitter production in the body. Amino acids are simulators of protein synthesis , which is not only a key component of muscle recovery, but also important for muscle maintenance in all age groups. There is a natural and gradual decline of muscle mass beginning around our fourth decade of life.
Chondro-Flx: A combination of glucosamine sulfate, chondroitin sulfate, vitamin C, and bromelain to promote healthy cartilage within our joints. These work together to decrease inflammation, re-hydrate, and increase joint integrity within our bodies.
You are probably looking at all of this wondering how on earth I take all of them in a day. Really, most of them are just once a day, so it really isn't over the top crazy. I will not tell you that I am super disciplined and never miss a supplement, because that would be lying. The two I rely on the most are the CoQ10 and the DHEA. I make the collegen a little easier and sometimes buy it in the powered form, which allows me to put it into my shakes. I do get a lot of my Amino acids in my shakes, so dependent upon my workout week and if I have had my shakes, the AminoComplex is not at the top of my list. The MSM and Chondro-Flx for me are interchangeable, and I base the need on them solely on my workout intensity and recovery.
None of the supplements above that I take are by any means "enhancers". These are all products specifically formulated to work with our bodies already existing chemicals. The supplements for me "fill the gaps" sort-a-speak that are forming with my aging. I'm not ready to slow down because I'm ageing. I am thinking that my 40's just might be my most active years yet!
Allostatic load is the physiological wear and tear on the body that results from ongoing response to the being alive. It was coined in 1993 by two Medical Doctors. There are three forms of life “stress” (load) that every human encounters every single day of their lives. These stressors falls into three categories:
You can also think of these 3 as:
We refer to those as the three T’s.
The allostatic load is a combination of the measurements of different factors that would increase the stress in the body. Things such as aging, weight, height to waist ratio, stress, medication use are all part of the equation. Many people experience gradual declines in physical and cognitive abilities even in the absence of clinical diagnosable disease. Increased stress has been associated with many health conditions that are widely discussed in the medical literature. Some of the most familiar include cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disease, and hormonal dysfunction. Prolonged or chronic stress impairs health through a complex array of physiological functions initiated by the release in the hypothalamus of corticotrophin releasing factor, CRF. CRF triggers the release of adrenal corticotrophic hormonal, ACTH, from the pituitary which in turn causes the release of cortisol from the adrenal cortex. Cortisol helps maintain blood glucose levels. Chronic stress or chronic administration of pharmacological cortisol preparations causes insulin resistance, hypertension, redistribution of body fat, and decreased protein synthesis. Further more stress compromises the immune system. The immune system is weakened through a decrease in the production of blood cells, antibodies, and gamma globulins but also through the inhibition of pro and inflammatory interleukins, tumor necrosis factor, and gamma interferon.
We have the best life saving and emergency medicine on the planet, yet the US leads the world in cancer, diabetes, and heart disease! Why? We pay little attention to ALLOSTATIC LOAD. Stress can have a wide ranging affect on the emotions, mood, and behavior. Equally important but often much less talked about are the accumulative affects of stress on the various systems, organs, and tissues of the body.
Northern Michigan Spine and chiropractic’s unique position is: Regular CHIROPRATIC increases the body’s ability to respond to STRESS, the (allostatic load)!! It does this by influencing the body’s response to it’s environment through the nervous system. This is a big thing to understand about good Chiropractic. When making decisions about your health one must discuss with their doctor the allostatic load the decision puts on the body. But the true art of spine care is to allow your body the ability to better respond to the three T’s in your life.
Chiropractic is essential to your life and planning if you want to live the best possible life you can. Genetically we all have a physiological tipping point. As the allostatic load rises beyond what we can withstand it crosses over to chronic illness and chronic disease. It is essential for you and your loved ones to be checked.
Spine health and great chiropractic are essential to living and feeling well.
To Our Health,
Dr. MJ Wegmann
The human body is an amazing collection of synergistic systems controlled by an internal intelligence; called LIFE. Other names used to describe the intelligence in our body have been; innate intelligence, spirit, and soul. The body is designed to be self-functioning and self-healing to a point. We all understand if we lose a finger we are not growing a finger back.
We tend to think of healing only when we suffer a cut or broken bone. Healing is actually the constant process of replacing old cells with new cells. To give you an example. Red blood cells, the cells we need to transport oxygen (kind of important) are replaced at a rate of 100 billion cells per day, with one trillion total red blood cells in constant circulation. Wow, that is a lot of healing in a day. No wonder we need to rest at night.
Health care is slowly changing from a symptom/disease based model to a function/performance based system in which the structure of the human body is restored and maintained. Correction and maintenance of the structure of the spine, particularity the cervical spine is of paramount importance in the preservation of optimal health. The cervical spine (the neck) is essentially the fuse box for the body with all neurological impulses passing through that structure. Keeping the structure and that area of the spine healthy enhances the body's innate healing capacity.
Here's how Chiropractic works: when a cell is injured or damaged (happens from living) in the body it releases a signal that is sent to the brain via the nerve system. The nerve system is protected and housed in the spinal column. Due to normal wear and tear, stress and misalignment of the spine, the signal being sent to the brain can be impeded, meaning: it doesn't get to where in needs to go fast enough. Does this cause a problem? Yes. Healing doesn't happen as it should, and this is a bad thing. Chiropractic's emphasis on the spine gets directly to the problem, allowing the nerve system, housed inside the spine, to communicate with the body better. This concept is vital to understanding how your body works and why Chiropractic is a great choice in caring for it.
Get in for your adjustment this week so you can continue to do the things you love.
To Our Health,
Dr. MJ Wegmann
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.
Welcome back and happy kickoff to summer! Now that Memorial Day has passed, we are in full summer mode. Pretty sure most of our nation was under a slight heat wave this weekend, so I'm guessing swimsuits came out and many of you were soaking up the sun and cooling off in the water. I hope everyone took some time to think about where they are in their fitness journey, and maybe even wrote down some goals. Goals are good, I like goals, they give us a destination to work toward. With that being said, what I want to help teach you is not truly about setting goals and achieving them, but building a knowledgeable foundation to make changes to your lifestyle. So often goals are met, then what???? Many people struggle MAINTAINING their hard work, and I don't think I would be too far off to say the getting the weight off and getting in shape is sometimes the easy part, the hard part is staying in shape. It is honestly a lifelong process that you need to understand and be very patient with for yourself. As much as everyone would LOVE to just drop 10, 20, 30, 50 pounds in a few weeks, it's not only terribly unhealthy, but seldom does it teach you the basics.
So I'm going to be straight to the point and simple here. Regardless of what all of those weight-loss salesmen, or social media ads tell you. so you buy into their latest and greatest new trend, there is 1 single and simple rule to drop weight...
ENERGY IN < ENERGY OUT
Energy in has to be less than energy out. You need to physically consume (eat) less calories in food than the amount of calories you burn in a day. The MILLION dollar rule that is about as simple as it can get. I don't care if you are into Keto dieting, Paleo, low carb, carb cycle, intermittent fasting, whatever...it's all under the same rule. Your body is not going to lose a single pound if you do not create a deficit. So that part is pretty darn simple, the rest gets a little more in depth with a little chemistry and math. I am certainly happy to discuss the different dieting methods, because they do have their place. They are all helpful tools to implement into your lifestyle and help you determine what works best for you. Every single human body is a little bit different, so your personal preference may be completely different than your best friend or even spouse.
Now you have the basic rule, (calories in must be less than calories burned) so the next step is figuring out your basic caloric needs BMR (basal metabolic rate). This is the lowest amount of calories your body needs to maintain vital functions. There are numerous websites that have calculators to figure this out for you. If you enjoy a little mathematical challenge, feel free to use the following:
Women: BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in years)
Men: BMR = 66 + (6.23 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) - (6.8 x age in years)
Important Point: Often times people think this number stays the same throughout there weight-loss. This is not the case at all. As you can see, it is dependent on your current weight. You need to recalculate this number frequently because the number will continue to decrease as it takes less energy for your body to function at a lighter weight.
My example: 655 + (4.35 x135) + (4.7 x 67) - (4.7 x 39)
655 + (587.25) + (314.9) - (183.3)
655 + (718.85) = 1374 calories/day
If I were to literally sit on the couch all day and do nothing, I would only need to eat 1374 calories from food to keep my body functioning without having to use stored energy (fat) to survive. To put this another way, I still will not lose weight if I drop my calories to 1374/day if I'm not moving at all during the day. This number is a pretty big shock to some, as it needs to be. One of the biggest fallacies is to think you are active simply because you get out of bed, do a few chores here and there, go to and from work or school, etc. You are actually NOT expending that much more energy then the BMR number. Personally I can't imagine eating only 1374 calories a day, I would feel completely starved and very HANGRY. This is where the first steps to become more active come into play "exercise", and eating healthy whole foods. The more calories you burn, the more calories you are going to be allowed to consume and still stay under your projected calories needed in a day. The eating healthy whole foods is SO important. The biggest factor to me is you can simply just eat SO MUCH MORE food when its healthy and a whole food.
I'm going to get much more in depth with macro counting and food choices, plus dieting styles soon because it all ties in together and again, helps your knowledge foundation.
Side note #1: I do not judge any diet type as being better for you or not. I believe each is a tool for personal preference. The trick is finding what works best for you and can turn into a lifestyle and not just a fad diet. I know Keto is the latest "greatest" weight-loss method and I am absolutely "pro" keto if it helps you and is sustainable. I do believe it has its place and I could write a completely new blog about just Keto, but I'll try to keep this a short version. Like low carb, you have very low to now carbohydrates, boom-bye bye glucose. No more carbs and glucose in your body, good bye water retention from the body holding onto those glucose molecules. No more sugars to burn, and the body turns to fat. Anyone that tells you you can eat as much fat as you want and still lose weight is full of horse poo. Yes, you are going to quickly drop water retention weight, but your body is not going to dip into its fat storage if you have too much readily available. Like I started out with, you STILL have to create a deficit.
Side note #2: This is just a personal note from me to you. One of the best investments I have made with my fitness lifestyle is a fitbit. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! I really thought they were a waste for so long, but I don't regret this purchase at all. There are a lot of different smart/fitness watches out there by now I'm sure, so if you are remotely interesting in one then make sure to research what might work best for you. I chose to go with the Fitbit Ionic because of all of the features. Yes, I budgeted for it since it's a bit expensive, but worth every penny to me. Obviously it is a watch and step counter, but it also fully links to my phone for updates from my email, texts, calls, calendar, and weather alerts. The watch now has apps to GPS locate all of your walks/runs, biking, hiking, skiing, etc. Mine is water resistance for water sports, plus has a heart rate monitor, sleep monitoring, exercise goals, music downloads, and SO MUCH MORE. Lastly, and almost my favorite, is the calorie counter. You can open the fitbit app on your smartphone, input all of your information and get help with your nutritional goals while it keeps track of your calories left for each day. The database for food is great and its always right there with you. I'm pretty sure the Fitbit Blaze and Versa are very similar to mine also. If you can budget for it, I don't think you will be disappointed in the purchase. I've learned so much about my own habits from it, plus it keeps me VERY motivated to keep moving throughout the day to rack up those steps. You might be very surprised how few steps you take in a day if you don't make movement a priority.
Before I leave you for the week, I'm going to give you something to work with again. Next week we are going to get into counting Macros and the many different ways to configure your macros. In order to make this useful, you need to keep track of EVERYTHING you eat. I'm not asking that you count for the next 7 days, maybe try 2 weekdays and 1 weekend day and write everything down. There are tons of apps on smartphones now that will help you count all of your calories and even macro divide them for you. My Fitness Pal, Loseit, fitbit, and many more that can assist you. Please don't cheat yourself and be diligent about writing everything down. If you snuck a bit of a muffin or cookie, you need to count it. Remember, this isn't a punishment at all, it's laying the foundation for your new healthy lifestyle. Stay tuned to the next few blogs as I go a little bit further in depth with the different types of dieting/eating habits to help you build that educational foundation.
I'm already proud of the steps you are taking and happy to be in this journey with you.
Till next week...
Dr. MJ Wegmann,