Integrative Health Blog

Holistic View and Treatment Approach for Addiction to Drugs and Alcohol

Posted by on Mon, Jun 29, 2020

For quite some time, the public view towards drug or alcohol addictions was more focused on the problems of personal will power and lacking self control. But fortunately, the smoking cessation treatment programs in recent years have started to shed more light into our understanding about the unique biological needs in certain individuals driven by particular genetic predisposition and environmental factors.

Addiction to drugs and alcohol can predispose or coexist with other medical conditions, such as depression, anxiety, and chronic fatigue. Adolescence is the often the time when some may start to seek relief and experiment with drugs and/or alcohol by themselves or with peers. Adolescents may lack knowledge and understanding of consequences and not have a good social support system in place. 

It is important to raise awareness in patients, families and society to understand how some of the possible underlying biological causes and potential treatment options can have a direct impact on the outcome for individuals who become addicted, and to society at-large. 

While personal discipline and social standards still play a vital role in combating against drug and alcohol abuse, a holistic clinical and laboratory evaluation to identify the root causes based on analysis of certain biochemical profiles and particular nutritional needs may open a new realm of therapy and provide hope for those with substance use disorders. With the advancement in genetic analysis, a spectrum of mild presentations of inherited genetic deficiency has been increasingly recognized. A majority of them have therapeutic options. Furthermore, coexisting chronic medical conditions, such as Epstein- Barr virus (EBV) and Lyme Disease/co-infections must be ruled out before any psychiatric drug therapy should be implemented.   Many of the laboratory evaluations are available now and also covered by medical insurance. The goal is to enhance the treatment efficacy and improve the treatment outcome.

Treating the Whole Person

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Tags: addiction, holistic approach, integrative medicine

Balance Your Hormones Naturally

Posted by on Mon, Jun 15, 2015

Hormones play an important role in your life every day.

They are your body’s chemical messengers, traveling in your bloodstream to tissues and organs. They play a role in your growth, metabolism, sexual function, reproduction and mood. If you doubt the power of hormones and their ability to affect everything from mood, to weight, to bowel health – ask the nearest pregnant woman if she’s noticed any difference in these areas. Or, just for fun, ask the nearest 13 year old girl!

Endocrine glands, which are special groups of cells, make hormones. The major endocrine glands are the pituitary, pineal, thymus, thyroid, adrenal glands, and pancreas. In addition, men produce hormones in their testes and women produce them in their ovaries. 

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Tags: thyroid, hormones, adrenal fatigue, integrative health, holistic approach

5 Reasons to Choose an Integrative Doctor for Primary Care

Posted by on Tue, Jan 27, 2015

A primary care provider is a family physician, internist, or nurse practitioner who coordinates all of the health care a patient receives. The holistic primary care model offers not only traditional primary care but also incorporates the best of complementary and alternative healing therapies from around the world to help you achieve optimum wellness, not just freedom from disease.

Our holistic primary care providers will be your partner and guide in helping you achieve your health goals.

Top 5 Reasons for Integrative Medicine

1. We treat the whole person

The mind, body and spirit all contribute to your health status and wellness. An integrative MD or Nurse Practitioner will develop a treatment plan that addresses your medical needs as well as your emotional and nutritional well-being. Stress management, diet, and lifestyle factors all play a role in your overall health.

2. Integrative medicine and Functional Medicine treat the cause of imbalance, not just the symptoms

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Tags: holistic approach, integrative medicine, primary care

Depression: It's Probably Not What You Think It Is.

Posted by on Tue, Aug 19, 2014

I recently had a brake problem in my car, and the diagnosis I made was completely different from the one my mechanic made.  My diagnosis was descriptive, “the brakes squeak and the car pulls to the left,” I said to my mechanic.  The diagnosis he made was that the rotors and brake pads were worn down. 

My diagnosis, like the ones often given to patients who suffer from psychiatric disorders, was descriptive of symptoms.  The other meaning of the word diagnosis is to define the cause.  That’s what depression really is; definitive, testable, modifiable causes.  The causes can be immunological (e.g., gluten sensitivity), infectious (e.g., Candida or Lyme), allergic (e.g., pollen), toxic (e.g., mercury), metabolic (e.g., hypoglycemia), psycho emotional (e.g., irrational thinking, or unfinished emotional trauma (PTSD) and/or genetic issues (e.g., methylation problems). 

Here is a short list of 21 other causes of depression:

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Tags: depression, holistic approach, Dr. Gant

Asthma: A Holistic Approach

Posted by on Mon, Mar 17, 2014

Number of Children with Asthma is Increasing

While spring is a welcome relief from the cold and dreary winter for many of us, it can be a time of misery for children suffering with asthma.  The blooming of trees with the accompanying pollen trigger wheezing, coughing, and other unwelcome symptoms for a rising number of children with asthma. Asthma now affects 1 in 11 children. The incidence has been rising over the past few decades, with an increase of 15% just in the past decade.

Other Factors to Consider with Asthma

The conventional medical approach to asthma is to relieve the symptoms as much as possible with the use of bronchodilators and steroids.  Bronchodilators open the airways, while steroids suppress the inflammatory response that the body produces to harmless stimuli, such as pollen from flowers and weeds.  The other approach is to identify the child’s triggers and avoid them.  But so many triggers, such as pollen, mold and dust mites are impossible to completely avoid.  While these are necessary treatments to control asthma symptoms, how about getting to the root causes of symptoms to help the body stop “overreacting” to these stimuli in the first place?  Here are four strategies of a holistic approach to asthma treatment that can reduce or even stop asthma at its root.

Feed your child an anti-inflammatory diet

Asthma is an inflammatory disease, which means that the body’s immune system is fired up, trying to battle the environmental assaults.  An anti-inflammatory diet is one that can help “calm the fire.” This is a diet rich in antioxidants and free of foods that further inflame the system.  Therefore, your child’s diet needs to be rich in natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans.  These plant foods provide an abundant supply of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients.  On the other hand, you want to rid your child’s diet of inflammatory foods such as artificial colors, flavors, preservatives and sweeteners found in many so-called “kid-friendly” foods.  White sugar and white flour products are also inflammatory.  And dairy products are a frequent source of inflammation for many children with asthma.

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Tags: asthma, detoxification, holistic approach, allergies, pediatrics

Periodontal or Gum Disease, a Chronic Disease of Mankind!

Posted by on Mon, Sep 24, 2012

Tom Baldwin DDS

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

Holistic Primary Care Approach to Digestive Health

Posted by on Wed, Dec 14, 2011

Did you know that 70 -80 % of your immune system is in or around the digestive tract?

It’s true. Now consider what would happen to your health if the digestive tract were compromised.

Malnutrition and lowered immunity would become a real health concern.

There are several things that can compromise the bowel including:

  • Parasites ( bacteria,  fungi, viruses, multiple cell organisms such  as pinworms)
  • Food allergies-inappropriate immune response to foods causing inflammation
  • Diverticula - herniations or pouches in the walls of the intestines that can trap foods and bacteria causing inflammation / infection of the bowel wall.
  • Antibiotics- while they can clear infections, they also kill good bacteria necessary for the health of the gut
  • Constipation- slow transit due to poor peristaltic motion can cause  the  bowel to become toxic due to bacterial overgrowth as well as tears in the walls of the intestines that easily become infected.
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Tags: holistic primary care, bowel health, immune system, integrative health, holistic approach, primary care, digestive health, holistic doctor

Biological Dentistry Considers the Whole Person

Posted by on Mon, Nov 15, 2010

by Mark McClure DDS, FACG

Biological Dentistry is Whole person dentistry:

Whole - person dentistry, which is gaining understanding and support among the public and professionals, is the awareness of the intricate web-like relationships between dentistry and one’s general health and wellbeing. Its practitioners have advanced skills and knowledge in intervening to regain and maintain patient’s health. The whole - person dentist will embraces other descriptive terms like holistic, integrative medical and biological dentist. The whole - person dentist must wear multiple hats – first he/she is conventionally trained, incorporating the best developing dental technologies and aesthetics that modern dentistry offers but there is much more to a holistic dental approach.

Biological Natural Dentistry

Whole person, Biological Dentistry refers to routinely using biological (or natural) products and principles to help people be healthier more effectively and efficiently. The use of herbs, super-foods, nutrients, drainage remedies and homeopathics, and oxygen- ozone (as well as drugs and surgery when needed) in routine and specialty dental services defines the whole body approach that is employed. In summary, the principles of biological dentistry is treatments that are safe and effective, non-toxic with little or no side-effects, allowing the patient to heal themselves and ultimately reaching a state of biologic homeostasis - meaning health.

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Tags: biological dentistry, integrative health, holistic approach, integrative medicine, dental health, holistic dentistry

Flu and Virus Prevention: How to Stay Healthy When Others Get Sick

Posted by on Wed, Nov 10, 2010

Flu season is upon us again.

Many believe that this season has become more worrisome because of the H1N1 swine flu that we have heard so much about. In June 2009 the World Health Organization declared a pandemic. However, a pandemic does not mean that the virus is more deadly. It simply means that it has spread further throughout the world. The response to this pandemic resulted in the rapid development of the swine flu vaccine.

We at NIHA share these concerns and want to provide our community with effective prevention measures to stay healthy, including potent strategies of regaining your health rapidly should you fall sick.

Educate yourself and implement these effective and powerful health tactics into your life. Check out the recommended product list below and make sure you are ready for flu and cold season.

The Art of Staying Healthy When Others Get Sick

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Tags: flu, immune system, integrative health, holistic approach, integrative medicine, virus

A Holistic Dentist's Approach to Dry Mouth

Posted by on Tue, Jun 29, 2010

 Michelle Janbakhsh DDS

Dry mouth, or xerostomia, is a condition usually associated with reduced salivary gland flow. It affects at least one in 10 adults.    In adults older than 65 the prevalence is about 25%, while in institutionalized elders it can be as high as 50%.
Many oral and systemic conditions can cause a change in the flow and composition of saliva. Prescription medications are implicated in 64% of dry mouth cases. The major drug groups are antihypertensives, antidepressants, analgesics, statins, antihistamines and anticancer meds but other factors may be involved.

Risk Assessment for Dry Mouth
If you answer yes to any of the following questions you could be at risk of abnormal salivary gland function.
1- Does the amount of saliva in your mouth seem too little?
2- Do you have any difficulty swallowing?
3- Does your mouth feel dry when eating a meal?
4- Do you sip liquids to aid in swallowing dry food?

Symptoms of Dry Mouth
Dry cracked lips and corners of the mouth, thick or ropey saliva, dry thin pale oral mucosa, loss of moist or burning feeling in the mouth, impaired taste, bad smell of the mouth, impaired taste, difficulty wearing dentures, dental hypersensitivity.
Non-oral symptoms: Sleep disturbance, dry nose and changes in sense of smell, dry burning eyes, blurred vision, heart burn, constipation, vaginal itching or dryness or fungal infection.
Complications of dry mouth include cavities on roots and teeth, reddened, fissured or lobulated tongue, opportunistic infections such as viral infection or overgrowth of candida. Also gingivitis, canker sore, cracked and bleeding tissue.

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Tags: biological dentistry, holistic approach, holistic dentistry