Integrative Health Blog

It's official! Food IS NOT food

Posted by on Mon, Oct 22, 2018

Well, we sort of knew that, given the genetically modified corn, soybeans, cotton, canola, sugar beets, and the list goes on1. In this case, however, I am referring to an NPR story2 on the new dietary habits of animals at the Melbourne Zoo.

“ . . .the monkeys are no longer allowed to eat bananas. And the pandas are getting pellets instead of plums. In fact, fruit has been phased out completely. That's because the fruit that humans have selectively bred over the years has become so full of sugar, the zoo's fruitarian animals were becoming obese and losing teeth.”

How ironic that, in this case, humans are the “canary in the coal mine”3.

The author being interviewed goes on to describe the fruit we see in stores today as something not found in nature, that is, beautiful to the eye and sweet in taste, but “robbed” of nutritional value.

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Tags: toxins, holistic nutrition

Special Event: The Role of Aluminum in Chronic Diseases such as Autism and Alzheimer's

Posted by on Mon, Oct 15, 2018

What are the latest findings on the correlation between aluminum  exposure and autoimmune diseases, Alzheimer's and autism?

And how can we protect ourselves?

Join us for a fascinating evening with world-renowned aluminum toxicity expert, Dr. Christopher Exley.

SPECIAL EVENT

DATE: Monday, Oct. 22, 2018

TIME: 6:00-7:30 pm

LOCATION: National Integrated Health Associates   5225 Wisconsin Ave. NW, #402                   Washington, D.C. 20015

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Healing is Being an Interpreter of the Body's Messages

Posted by on Tue, Oct 09, 2018

The human body speaks a “foreign” sensory language.  It would be nice if it could speak English, and say, “That pasta you ate last night is fermenting a lot of fungus, and I’ve told you before about your auto-brewery problems, so take extra probiotics today, and eat very lightly, and please, no carbohydrates.”  Instead of speaking English, the body speaks with sensory symptoms such as gas, bloating, discomfort, fatigue and loose stools.

Like translating Russian into English, as a functional medicine physician I serve as an interpreter, so that my patients can begin to listen to their body’s messages.  Later, as they learn the language, they can listen to their own "body-speak."

What Symptoms Can Mean

Symptoms are attempts to communicate and an attempt to heal and make things better, regardless of how unpleasant symptoms are.  We have been indoctrinated to believe that symptoms are diseases, that they should be medicated with something to anesthetize (numb) or control them.  Sometimes symptoms can be so severe that they actually pose a health risk, such as severe diarrhea which can cause dehydration.  Most of the time, symptoms are not life-threatening and it helps to pay attention to what your body is trying to say and do. Diarrhea, cough, urgency on urination and a runny nose are attempts of the body to rid itself of toxins.  Blindly medicating such symptoms frustrates your body’s attempts to rid you of toxins and infections and to heal.  

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Tags: functional medicine, mind-body

Appetite Control Without Medications

Posted by on Wed, Oct 03, 2018

What causes increased appetite?

Appetite is controlled by a complex neuroregulatory system.  There are many factors affecting this mechanism to include the composition of your diet, side effect of medications, chronic stress, hormonal imbalances, and even the types of bacteria that live in your gut. 

Cravings result from a combination of social, cultural, psychological, physiological and genetic factors and can be a major obstacle to weight loss and optimizing one's health. As a functional medicine physician, it is important to examine all underlying factors which may contribute to overweight or obesity.

What can I do to improve this?

If you feel that cravings and increased appetite are interfering with your health goals, try addressing the following list of possible factors.

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Tags: functional medicine, weight loss

You Just Received a Cancer Diagnosis- What’s Next?

Posted by on Tue, Oct 02, 2018

 

You have just received a diagnosis of cancer. It is normal to feel overwhelmed and experience mood swings. Your emotions might range widely from fear and sadness to anger and disbelief.  However, working through your emotions and making a plan may help you in your journey toward healing. I am writing this in hope of helping you to pick a path of clarity so that you can feel calm, strong, and positive as you approach your cancer treatment options, and in the process, help you reclaim your life.

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Tags: cancer

Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome: A Misdiagnosed and Under-diagnosed Disease

Posted by on Tue, Sep 25, 2018

Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, or CIRS, was originally described as Water Damaged Building Illness. CIRS is an illness which exhibits multiple systems and occurs when one is exposed to unhealthy indoor air.

More research revealed that CIRS is  a genetic predilection to a myriad of abnormal systemic inflammatory responses that  results when an individual does not have the immune response genes to eliminate neurotoxins produced by their exposure to mold, bacteria, or viruses as well as fungal infection. CIRS affects multiple systems in the body, causing patients to exhibit numerous symptoms which are very difficult to pinpoint and the patient in most cases goes undiagnosed for a long time.

Interesting to note, but not to the suffering patient, is that they may also acquire new food allergies and allergies to medications and other agents.

Symptoms of Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS)

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Tags: inflammation, CIRS

Functional Medicine Testing for Food Sensitivities

Posted by on Tue, Sep 18, 2018

Food sensitivity is often a major risk factor for systemic inflammation immune stress and it can distract your immune system from more important tasks such as destroying cancer cells,  parasites, fungus, viruses and invasive fungus. As part of a functional medicine work-up, a simple, inexpensive test panel for food sensitivities can determine certain foods to eliminate for a while which can eliminate some inflammation and immune stress, and which can lower your overall stress levels.

Regardless of the problem that you are seeking care for, at some level your immune system is involved, and the immune system does better if it is not distracted or damaged by food sensitivities. For instance, you may have mild food sensitivities which may not be that important for your overall health, but if they distract your immune system in its fight against Lyme or cancer, or you are dealing with serious asthma or an autoimmune disorder, even mild sensitivities can be important. Food sensitivity recovery is a relatively simple process but giving up one’s favorite foods can be difficult. We have health coaches and support to help you make better food replacement choices.

The Immune System and Leaky Gut 

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Tags: functional medicine, food sensitivities

Analysis of a Natural Killer Cell As a Modifiable Factor for Cancer Prevention and Treatment

Posted by on Thu, Sep 13, 2018

Natural killer cells are a type of lymphocyte, or white blood cell, that is an important component of our immune system. Natural killer (NK) cells play an important role in immune defense against cancer, viral infection and intracellular bacterial/parasitic infection.  They help protect us by patrolling the body and blood, identifying diseased or foreign cells and attacking them while also helping the immune system to rid the body of these cells. T-lymphocytes, defined as CD8 negative and CD57 positive, is a subset of the natural killer cell population found in peripheral blood.  This cell group has matured to obtain a higher capacity to eliminate the mutated cells, such as the precursor cells for cancer and cancer cells.  Measuring the amount of CD8-/CD57+ cells by testing a blood sample may serve as a monitoring tool and a treatment target during cancer supportive care  and prevention.

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Tags: integrative cancer treatment

Gearing Up for School Days with a Natural Option

Posted by on Thu, Aug 30, 2018

How do you plan to keep your children healthy this year?

School is starting back up, and our children are in close quarters, touching every surface, wiping their noses on their hands and sneezing everywhere. It seems regardless of how many times you show them how to properly sneeze into their elbow so as not to spread the storm of bacteria here-there-and-everywhere- they are children, and learning takes time! No matter how hard we try, we know that this daily contact with other children increases the chance that they will contract colds or flu and may lower their immunity to fight illness. 

How can we keep them healthy? A great home remedy that you can make for yourself and loved ones that may help keep illnesses at bay is Four Thieves’ Vinegar.

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Tags: natural options, pediatrics, recipe

See Your Dentist. It's Good for Your Heart!

Posted by on Sun, Aug 26, 2018

Recently you may have read or heard that "The American Heart Association (AHA) has said that Periodontal Disease (Gum Disease) is not a cause of heart disease." This statement was on virtually every news outlet including newspapers. What amazes me is that there was so little depth to this "news bite."

In fact, what the AHA said was that no one can say what the cause of heart disease actually is. By this, they mean that heart disease (the number one killer in the USA) is a "multi-factorial" disease. Heart disease has many contributors to its cause, and any of these contributors may indeed be the cause in any one patient. Contributors to heart disease include obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, genetics, periodontal disease, and other factors. No single factor might be the cause in any one case.

Inflammation and Heart Disease

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Tags: dental health, periodontal disease, gum disease, heart disease, holistic dentistry, biological dentistry