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Nutrition is a critical determinant of immune responses and malnutrition is the most common cause of immunodeficiency worldwide. Your body requires both macronutrients and micronutrients to do its job of keeping you safe from invading pathogens. Deficiency in protein, and micronutrients zinc, selenium, iron, copper, vitamins A, C, D, E, and B-6, and folate, even mild deficiency, is associated with immune dysfunction and increased infection complications.
Sleep is important. Without enough, your body does not function properly. I am a doula, as well as a Functional Medicine Acupuncturist, and sometimes that means long nights attending births, and no sleep. Days, like today, I am reminded why we need sleep, and the consequences of not getting adequate sleep. (...because I am writing this while really tired!) Not getting enough sleep can cause dysfunction in your mental, physical and emotional health.
Menorrhagia is the medical term for menstrual bleeding that is abnormally heavy or prolonged. The amount of blood loss needed to be diagnosed with menorrhagia is extreme, and the prolonged bleeding often times multiple weeks in length. Menorrhagia affects approximately 10 million American women, mostly in their 40's and 50's, and accounts for 20% of gynecological visits.
The goals of alternative treatments for menorrhagia are the same as the goals of conventional treatment: control the bleeding, prevent and treat anemia, and restore an acceptable menstrual pattern. Through my functional medicine approach to treatment, I look at etiology, nutritional deficiencies, and how these two factors create a pattern of dysfunction. With correct identification of the pattern of dysfunction, treatment of menorrhagia can be more precise and effective.
Over 125 clinical diseases have been linked to oxidative stress as a major cause or contributing factor to disease progression. Oxidative stress refers to chemical stress at a cellular level. When not correctly managed naturally by antioxidants in the body, these chemicals wreak havoc causing inflammation, physical stress, and in the end disease.
Most of have been touch by cancer in our lives. Whether it is a mother, daughter, cousin or friend, at some point we will all have a loved one diagnosed with cancer. According the the National Cancer Institute, it was estimated that 1,735,350 new cases of cancer were diagnosed in 2018. The most commonly diagnosed cancers in the United States are breast cancer, lung and bronchus cancer, prostate cancer, colon and rectum cancer, melanoma of the skin, bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, kidney and renal pelvis cancer, endometrial cancer, leukemia, pancreatic cancer, thyroid cancer, and liver cancer. Approximately 38% of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetimes.
Nutrition in the treatment and prevention of cancer is important to better outcome success. Nutritional dysfunction can be caused by the disease, or be related to previous health issues and lifestyle, or be a complication of chemotherapy and other drug use in treatment. In either case, proper nutrition is paramount in treatment and prevention of relapse.
We have all been touched in our lives by cancer. A mother. A daughter. A cousin. A friend. Cancer does not discriminate. Most commonly, I see patients undergoing treatment for breast cancer of varying stages and types.
Western treatment typically consists of a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. In reality, when we are supporting patients with cancer, it doesn't matter too much what type of cancer they have, it matters the treatment they are receiving. The different treatment types, and chemotherapy types, have their own set of symptoms that can occur; nausea, insomnia, neuropathy, bone pain, etc.
My goal as an alternative healthcare practitioner is to not treat the cancer, but to support the body through western treatment to lessen negative symptoms.
I love everything about pregnancy! Obviously, it's why I do what I do. Except yeast infections, I don't love those. Yeast infections are no fun! Especially when you are pregnant. Itchy and irritated rashes, smelly discharge, burning and soreness are all things no pregnant woman wants to deal with. These little fungi are not only irritating but can be dangerous by increasing the risk of Premature Rupture of Membranes from infection (PROM). Candida in pregnancy should always be taken seriously. That doesn't mean, though, that it cannot be treated without prescription antifungals. In fact, the success rate in treatment with diet (with or without medication) is greater than medication alone .
Medications save lives and help many people live more full lives. But with all medications there comes risks, and side effects. This is the same with all forms of birth control. It would be naive to think that adding a synthetic hormone to your body would not cause a disruption. This is a non-natural addition to your biochemistry. As such it changes aspects of your biochemistry, some with positive and wanted effects, and others negative. These negative changes cause side effects. Some mild and some severe. Side effects are caused by a number of factors including the diminished ability to properly metabolize the additional hormones, allergic reactions to the medications, the act of disrupting your natural hormonal patterns, and nutrient depletion among others. In this article we will be addressing the nutrient depletion component.
Did you know that 60-90% (depending on age group)(1) of reproductive aged women are not consuming enough Magnesium in America? This is a big problem, and even more so in pregnancy. In prenatal nutrition, we have heard about the need for things like Folate (please don't use Folic Acid), but we have not heard much on the need for Magnesium. Possibly because the goal of prenatal nutrition is to grow healthy babies, not the functional health of the mother. With the increasing rise of maternal health issues and death, this needs to change. (I am taking a little bump off my last post where I discussed how disappointed I am in the prenatal vitamins available in the market. If you want to know why, "Your Prenatal Vitamin Sucks" click here.)
The vast array of available prenatal vitamin options out there are staggering. Whether they are over the counter, or prescription, the quality is broad and often overwhelming. So, where is a pregnant mother to turn? With so many options over the counter, and physicians with mediocre nutritional education, how are they to know what is a good prenatal vitamin and what isn't?
Today I am going to tell you why YOUR PRENATAL VITAMIN SUCKS and what you can do about it.
So, sit back and grab a cup of tea, because this is going to be a one heck of a ride.