“Men are from Mars and women are from Venus” —John Gray PhD Women and men are very different. The concept seems fairly easy to grasp. Most get it. It seems obvious. Even the science supports it. However, this point seems to escape most in Medicine today. The perfect example of this biochemical difference […]
It is hard! Health is to hard. Many don’t achieve it because it is to hard. These were the words of a recent conversation I had with a friend and client. Is Health hard? Is Wellness really unobtainable? I may surprise you with my answer—for many the answer is unfortunately yes. The answer […]
What is a Heart Healthy Diet? As I mentioned last month, I want to devote this blog to a healthy diet with an emphasis on heart health and disease prevention. My hope is that I will encourage you to be your own best health advocate on what you should eat. One word I want you […]
As we have visited the Farmer’s Market or vegetable stand, we are reminded how colorful and fresh the produce has been during the summer season. However, even with the wonderful variety we have had, I find that few appreciate and understand how vital this food group is to our health. Unfortunately, even the USDA food […]
Will eating healthier make it easier to achieve superior skin health? If you’ve had a nutritional consultation at Forum Health Knoxville, then you already know the answer. Yes! The food you put into your body has a direct effect on how you feel and look. Being diligent about applying SPF and regularly visiting your skin […]
The American Heart Association, as well as the 2010 dietary guidelines from the U.S. Government, both advise eating eight ounces of seafood, or two seafood meals a week, particularly because of their “heart healthy” omega-3 levels. However, U.S. consumers are often given inadequate, confusing or misleading information about the fish they are actually buying.
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.
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 […]
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.
After the holidays, most of us like to start anew by establishing health and wellness goals for the New Year. A few important questions to answer after you’ve established your goals are…
Winter is full of fruits and veggies that are loaded with vitamin C to ward off colds and the flu. Fill up on your vegetables for meals and have oranges, mandarins, clementines and grapefruit for dessert.
Flax and chia seeds are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Here is a breakfast smoothie recipe packed with omega-3s, protein, antioxidants, and more!
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.
The cooler seasons brings temperatures that challenge our immune systems. Here are 4 foods to build our health and keep our immune system hardier through the fall and winter.
You’ve no doubt heard the old saying “You are what you eat.” Well, recent medical research has highlighted links between diet and improved mental functioning, raising the distinct possibility that, in fact, “You think what you eat.”
That could be encouraging news for youngsters diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), seniors struggling with the onset of dementia and anyone who desires to think more clearly and focus for longer periods of time.
Lots of foods are rich in the vitamins and other nutrients that can boost cognitive functioning, some which are well-known and others that are less-familiar. Among them:
“Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!” -Let It Snow lyrics by Sammy Cahn
Wintertime in Tennessee is a great excuse to download or buy a new book and then get lost between its covers. My favorite for 2012 is “Wheat Belly” by Dr. William Davis. This is a fascinating and fun read describing how the amber waves of grain of our grandparents are barely recognizable as today’s genetically modified dwarf grain. This leads to potential digestive disorders, increased inflammation, and ultimately malabsorption of nutrients.
Did you know that wheat products elevate blood sugar more than Snickers candy bars or ice cream? As blood sugar (glucose) rises, more insulin is released from the pancreas. This allows entry of glucose into the cells of the body, converting glucose to fat. The higher the blood glucose after eating, the greater the insulin level leading to more fat being deposited, especially in the abdomen. The bigger your wheat belly, the poorer your response is to insulin, in turn leading to insulin resistance which can trigger diabetes.
“I feel stupid, fat, and tired,” is a recurring theme with many of our new patients at Seasons. Many factors play a role in this syndrome.
One common but overlooked contributor is environmental toxins. A new study by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org) found over 48 toxic chemicals in women’s blood and urine. Besides toxic metals, chemicals such as pesticides, BPA, phthalates, etc. were discovered in large amounts.
The creation of the Infrared sauna has completely transformed the meaning of the word “sauna.” An Infrared sauna offers 7 times the effectiveness of a traditional sauna because of its ability to penetrate human tissue.
A heart healthy eating plan that focuses on fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy oils is important to our body’s function and health. As with all heart healthy diets, fruits, vegetables and grains are key. With the Mediterranean diet, more emphasis is placed on whole grains rather than refined as well as fresh fruits and vegetables rather than juice or fruit drinks. Extra virgin olive oil is the principle source of fat in the Mediterranean diet, being used for cooking, baking and for salad dressings and drizzling on vegetables. Nuts, legumes and fish are encouraged to provide the main source of protein.
At Forum Health Knoxville, we know wellness is not about taking a prescription medication to control a symptom. True wellness is the result of balancing five key points: nutrition, exercise, hormone balance, inflammation reduction and detoxification. At Forum Health Knoxville we address each of the five points of wellness to help you achieve not only weight loss goals, but more importantly your health and wellness goals.
Strawberries are in full bloom! Local grocery stores and roadside vendors have the best of the best when it comes to strawberries. As with any berry, strawberries are loaded with antioxidants. Strawberries also are an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese. The antioxidants and vitamin C in strawberries help to clean up the free radicals affecting the eyes and joints. Strawberries are known for helping reduce the risk and symptoms of macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis and gout.
This year for National Nutrition Month the American Dietetic Association is promoting “Eat Right With Color”. Scientists have discovered major health benefits packed in the color of fruits and vegetables. The powerhouse chemicals responsible for this are called phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are what put the brightness in tomatoes and strawberries and the brilliant color in oranges, carrots and kiwi.
Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month make February a month to celebrate sweethearts. What a perfect time to show your loved one how much you care by preparing a meal with heart-healthy superfoods such as omega-3 fatty acids and fresh vegetables. Adding superfoods to your daily diet has the ability to decrease the risk of cancer, improve heart function, and fight infection. Make heart healthy dishes for you and your sweetheart and you will be doing your part for a healthier heart!