Dining Out & GMOs: The Real Price We Pay

It’s a fact: Americans love eating out. But dining out will make you fat and very unhealthy! Read this eye-opening article about food loaded with hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides.

Pulling Back The Curtains On Dr. Oz: The Truth About IV Nutrition Therapy

Recently on his daily television show, Dr. Oz discussed IV nutrition therapy. I was very disappointed when Dr. Oz questioned the validity, benefit, and safety of this invaluable therapy. He had a guest physician on his show to defend IV therapies, but his guest talked in generalizations with no specifics and no scientific data. Dr. Oz’s conclusion […]

An Apple a Day? Healthy Choices vs. Inflammation

My pre-60th birthday journey to improve my previous test results from Seasons of Farragut continues! This month I decided to focus on the first tenet in our Forum Health Knoxville wellness regimen – nutrition!

 

About two years ago I took the ALCAT test and was astonished at my lengthy list of reactive foods! The ALCAT is a fascinating food sensitivity test in which white blood cells are introduced to a variety of foods, chemicals, and herbs. The severity of the reaction determines if a substance is mild, moderate, severe, or normal within my body. Since knowledge is power, I decided to receive the news that gluten and dairy were on my “severe list” as a positive indicator rather than “buyers’ remorse” for having performed the test!

 

Lyn-Genet Recitas has written a book, The Plan, which explains how inflammation from food intolerance can cause symptoms such as joint pain, skin disorders, fatigue, weight issues, headaches, and digestive disorders. Whereas a food allergy can have almost an immediate effect, a food sensitivity may not show up for several hours to 3 days later. For weight gain, it’s not as much about the calories as the chemistry of the body. One person may benefit from last night’s salmon and broccoli, but someone else may actually gain 2 pounds. Inflammation from food intolerance causes damage to the lining of the gut. As the lining becomes “leaky” with gaps present, foods begin to slip through not completely digested. This causes the body to attack undigested foods.

 

As we age, inflammation can increase which causes our systems to slow down. Many of us have much less stomach acid and digestive enzymes to break down food. This can ultimately alter our weight and our health. Reactive foods cause our bodies to produce more histamine which causes water retention via dilated capillaries. The brain responds by increasing the production of Cortisol. As more Cortisol is produced, fewer sex hormones are produced since both sets of hormones depend on the same building blocks. Increased Cortisol causes an increase in glucose which causes an increase in blood sugar! This domino effect alters the good bacteria in the gut and can increase yeast production. The altered gut flora leads to a weakened immune response since about 70% of our immune system is in the gut.

Reflections From Nan: Six Months To Sixty

Even though my 60th birthday is a little over 6 months away, I am planning now for better health, mental acuity, energy, and sense of well-being! My goal is to improve all of the test results that I have previously had at Forum Health Knoxville. You may remember that I did a Telomere test several months ago – a fascinating test revealing how rapidly one ages relative to a normal population. Those results showed that I was above average for my age range; however, there was definitely room for improvement!

 

For my birthday countdown, I have chosen to begin with a detailed cardiac evaluation measuring specific markers in my blood. My total cholesterol has always been slightly elevated; however, over 50 percent of patients hospitalized with acute myocardial infarctions had normal lipid levels as defined by the traditional blood tests. Functional medicine has identified over 400 risk factors, but they are all exacerbated with inflammation, oxidative stress, and immune dysfunction (chronic infections).

 

Cholesterol is not the villain portrayed in the statin commercials! It is a biological necessity for creating vitamin D, our steroid hormones, estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, as well as other tasks. High levels are not a sure sign of cardiac disease, nor are low levels a promise of heart health. Our bodies manufacture most of our cholesterol with a smaller amount coming from the food we eat.

 

Since cholesterol has to travel through the blood which is watery, the body packages it in various “containers” called lipoproteins. Lipoproteins vary according to the amount of protein, fat, and cholesterol they contain. Those with more protein and less fat/cholesterol are called high density lipoproteins or HDL. Those with less protein and more fat/cholesterol are called low density lipoproteins or LDL. A third type carries even more cholesterol and fat with less protein and it is called very low density lipoprotein or VLDL.

Record Highs Noted this Summer!

The outside thermostats are definitely rising this summer. But the heat outside shouldn’t mean sudden bursts of “personal” heat, otherwise known as hot flashes!

 

Oddly enough, I have personally experienced fewer hot flashes when I am at the beach! Is that a strange but true fact? Indeed it is. But there is a great explanation. It’s not the outdoor temperature which contributes to those hot flashes, it’s actually Cortisol fluctuations that wreak havoc on our internal thermostat.

 

Many women are surprised to discover that their saliva tests indicate significant imbalance with their adrenal glands. These tiny glands located right above each kidney secrete a number of hormones to help the body deal with stress. Cortisol is commonly called the “stress hormone” due to its involvement in your response to stressful situations.

 

Adrenal fatigue from chronic stressors such as blood sugar imbalance, inflammation, insomnia, as well as emotional issues can manifest itself through intense hot flashes and/or night sweats. Unless Cortisol levels are measured, it’s difficult to treat because both high and low levels can have the same symptoms. Healthy adrenal glands significantly improve a sense of well-being!