The Rollercoaster of Life

Grandma: "I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn't like Read more

Sheltering at Home/Covid 19

Never in the last two decades of my career as a physician would I have imagined that we would be using the same mask to see patients all day and then sterilizing/recycling them at the end of the day. Read more

Turmeric Health Benefits

Have you ever wondered what the paste is applied to the bride and groom's faces and arms in Indian weddings?  It's actually the spice turmeric.  Turmeric is the ingredient in curry that gives it a vibrant yellow color.  Actually, Read more

COVID 19 Precautions

With the scare of COVID here in the USA now, I wanted to post a little info about boosting immunity to prevent contracting the virus. Here are some important facts about Covid-19 It is spread by contact with Read more

Natural Tips for Avoiding Colds

This cold and flu season is still upon us and unfortunately, many patients are still being plagued by these nasty viral symptoms.  Here are a few tips to try if you feel like you are coming down with something. Of Read more

Sherry's Story

Sherry has a great story.  She has been diabetic for years and she has made some massive changes!   "I have been on a lifestyle change. It has been a year following a ketogenic food plan.  When I started this journey Read more

Pharmacy to Farmacy

Many of you may know Erin-- the fabulous Pharm D that worked in our office a few years back.  Erin is a phenomenal gal and we embarked on the journey  into natural medicine around the same time.  As we both Read more

When Should I Take My Supplements?

If you are like me -- you are just starting to realize why it is important to add supplements to your diet.  Even if we are eating a clean, healthy and unprocessed diet;  the mineral content of the soil Read more

disease

Gluten Free Update

Here’s Superhero Sandy’s latest gluten-free update.  It seems it is possible to change and still enjoy food!  Here are a few of her recent observations and recommendations.  Thanks Sandy–we are all inspired by you!

 

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Sandy Writes:

Gluten free update: I’ve always been one to buy quality name brand products, not the generic store brand stuff that doesn’t taste as good. I’m known among close family and friends as a good cook, and it has always been my contention that good cooking starts with the choices you make in the store. I’m a picky shopper, favoring name brands and top quality fresh food; my motto is “if nobody eats it, it’s not a bargain,” so stay away from the cheap, generic stuff.

Anyway, while driving the four blocks to Kroger from my home one day about three months ago, my phone rang. It was the nurse at my doctor’s office telling me that my thyroid antibodies were sky-high and that I needed to get on a gluten-free diet as soon as possible. I also needed to start taking probiotics, selenium, and CoQ-10 to help combat the catastrophe that was taking place in my intestines and finding its way to my thyroid gland…and who knows where else…probably wherever I felt pain, including my arthritic knees. As I understand it, the antibody issue is separate from the TSH, T3, T4 markers for thyroid disease. This was something different, an autoimmune thing I had going on along with a underactive thyroid gland.

The nurse sounded serious. This wasn’t just a “why don’t you try this and see what happens” suggestion; it was an order. Oh, man. I had a lasagna pan full of semolina pasta covered in meat sauce, cheese, and sour cream…all ready to bake for my grandson and his friends who would be arriving in a couple of hours. I started doing an inventory of what I was planning for dinner that very night that I could and could not eat if I were to actually change my diet to gluten-free. Salad? Okay, yeah. Pasta? Not so much. Bread? Don’t make me laugh. First I panicked. And then I started to solve the problem.

I started changing my shopping practices on that very first trip. Luckily, I ran across some gluten-free pasta, so I bought it, scraped some sauce and cheese off the casserole, cooked up the new pasta, and mixed them together. Not bad. So far, so good. Everybody else ate the original casserole while I ate my gluten-free pasta version. And from that point on, my kitchen only contained gluten-free pasta. You literally couldn’t tell the difference…although you do have to be a bit more exact about cooking time.

Then I started doing research, shopping the out-of-the-way sections of the store: buying organic stuff, fresh fruits and vegetables. I also started going to the local meat market here in Greencastle, buying better, unsullied by hormones and antibiotics meat and milk and butter and eggs.

Now, less than three months later, I just returned from a grocery shopping expedition. I have completely changed, one or two items at a time, what I buy at the store. My shopping list is entirely different from it was not long ago. Here’s a partial list of what I buy now:

Trader’s Point milk (grass-fed, organic, not homogenized, the real stuff my Grandpa Hause used to carry in buckets from the barn to the house)
Kerrygold Irish butter (kind of like the stuff my Grandma churned from those buckets of milk)
Blue Sky free range eggs (I’ve tried several brands of eggs; these have the most golden yellows I’ve ever seen.)
Van’s gluten-free waffles…or pancakes…or whatever. These are better than Eggo. Trust me.
Rudi’s gluten-free “original” white bread (okay, so it’s not quite the same as what you usually buy…but it’s gluten-free and you can make a sandwich with it.)
Izze soda (instead of diet Coke…nothing but fruit juice and sparkling water)
Smucker’s Simply Fruit jelly…again, no sugar, no sweetener of any kind…doesn’t need it…just fruit juice.
Udi’s blueberry muffin tops (gluten, soy, wheat, and dairy free)
fresh produce from local suppliers, including some honey crisp apples from Anderson Orchard, which we picked up yesterday
heirloom tomatoes…don’t fall for vine ripe or Indiana tomatoes…heirloom are the best
100% grass-fed beef from local producers. If I can’t find grass-fed, I will still buy local. If I can’t find local, I buy organic…no hormones, no antibiotics. Sometimes this means there’s no chicken available today, so you have to buy pork instead or you can’t find the cut of beef you want. You have to be adaptable to eat well.
Kemp’s frozen yogurt (because my soul needs ice cream)
Talenti gelato (can’t eat much of this because it’s calorie-, fat-, and sugar-laden, but it is gluten-free, HFCS free, and oh, man, is it ever good!)
Simple Truth gluten-free animal crackers (a store brand, but good)
Quinn’s popcorn (although i don’t use the flavor packet that comes with it…I use the above mentioned Kerrygold Irish butter.)
Pamela’s chocolate chip gluten-free cookies
Glutino table crackers
Ronzoni gluten-free pasta
Muir Glen fire roasted diced tomatoes (I already knew these were the best canned tomatoes and tomato sauces and spaghetti sauces around…been buying Muir Glen for a while now)
frozen corn, peas, green beans, broccoli…whatever I can’t find fresh, I buy frozen. Just the vegetables. Not the kind that come with sauces already in them. I love those ones that you can steam in the microwave.
Maple Hill creamery yogurt (full fat with the cream on top, just like the milk from grass-fed cows…and mostly I buy plain and mix in my own fruit and granola and sweeteners. Trader’s Point makes good yogurt too, but Maple Hill is thicker. I like it better.
organic blue agave syrup
real maple syrup
GiddyUpGo gluten-free granola
Nature’s Path corn flakes
Cheese…I don’t know about cheese. We still have a bunch I bought in Wisconsin last month. I can’t swear that what I have is organic and grass-fed. Probably some is and some isn’t. I’m working on that.

I try to buy things that are sugar-free, but you have to watch that. Most of the time “sugar-free” on a label means that they used aspartame or some other poison instead of sugar. Sugar isn’t good, it contributes to inflammation, but poison is worse. Sugar is also better than high fructose corn syrup.

That’s all I got for you now, but my list is ever-changing, and I still haven’t been able to explore Fresh Thyme as thoroughly as I want to. Look for more updates in the future on my gluten-free lifestyle. Oh, and I just got another blood test last week. My numbers are “a little bit better.” We’re making some adjustments. But I feel better all the time, am not sick as much as I used to be…I’m staying on top of this thyroid deal, and that seems to actually be helping with the arthritis issues too.10505625_10152531893746815_5633312240394115874_n

Posted on by Angela in disease, Nutrition, Uncategorized, Whole Food Leave a comment

Robin Williams

I’m devastated at the tragic death of Robin Williams.   However,  I am grateful in so many ways.  I’ve seen testimonials of depression, addiction, and imperfection posted on social media sites all day.    Robin’s comedy entertained us with wicked humor,  but his death provoked a new set of emotions.  He now demonstrates the issue that mental health is a disease.   In my world, he is still teaching and entertaining on a whole new uncomfortable level.

Unfortunately, my profession holds me hostage to stories of despair, victimization, and contempt of disease states.   Stories of suicide and the aftermath are hard to hear .  Unfortunately, I’ve found myself attracting them into my life via my confused emotions on the subject.

Depression is a disease.  Is it hereditary? maybe—-Are you predisposed and destined to get it?  NO, I think not.

I believe that illness evolves into disease  based on everyday choices.  Nobody chooses to be depressed or sick.  I get that.   Robin Williams’s death is a call to action.   He had the coveted wealth, fame and stardom-but, it wasn’t enough.  Please reach out to those struggling quietly around you.  I hope this post helps!  A few of my closest friends and I will be doing the suicide prevention walk –I hope you can join us!

 

For Lucy and Maggie …

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Countless hours spent on the deck discussing the uncertainties of life. Innumerable days of listening to our children giggle, play, fight and cry together. Tears shed watching one another battle the ups and downs of family life in the 21st century. These experiences have made our former neighbors become our dearest friends and confidants. They are our “wolf pack”.

This week, the Henriksens, and their dear friends watched their families bond together once again as they faced yet another frightening event. An event that would forever change the way all ten of us view life and the ambiguity of the world. We will become different people having experienced this sad tragedy.

Our dearest friends’ daughter has known one of the most vivacious, loving, talented and endearing girls for many years. The two girls were kindred spirits at the mere ages of 15 and 16. To the shock of everyone, she took her own life this week. She battled depression for years. Unfortunately, the disease won the strenuous fight. Sadly and despite her suspected perception, young Maggie was never alone.

Most all of us probably know someone whose life has been affected by depression, either directly or indirectly. We may not know that someone is suffering from depression, they may not even know themselves. Two out of three people who struggle with depression never seek help resulting in untreated depression as the leading cause of suicide. In America alone, it’s estimated that 19 million people live with depression, and suicide is the third-leading cause of death among those 18-24 years old.

Perhaps you have seen the countless photos on social media of outstretched arms with the word “love” scribed on skin and merely thought it some new type of arm art fad. There is a much deeper meaning to these sharpie tattoos.

Renee was a troubled Florida teen. Described as one who “has felt the touch of awful naked men, battled depression and addiction, and attempted suicide” she at one point used her cocaine-cutting razor to carve “F—k Up” on her arm adding to the other fifty self inflicted scars there. A group of concerned friends finally convinced her to go to a drug treatment center but she was deemed too “high risk” due to her distinctive markings and denied treatment. Fearing for her life, they designed a T-shirt selling drive in hopes of raising enough money to pay for her care. Their experiences led them to realize the greater need beyond just Renee.

Together they organized and formed TWLOHA, a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people lost in depression, addiction, self-destruction and suicide. You can read their complete story and Mission Statement here: http://www.twloha.com. Their efforts caught on and went viral. Photos of teens with “Love” on their arms began popping up in dramatic fashion. Famous bands and the Hollywood elite began wearing their trendy T-shirts. “Why do you have that written on your arms?” “What does that T-shirt mean and where can I get one?” All were keen efforts to raise awareness for this cause and show those in need that they are not alone. By metaphorically applying “Love” as a pressure bandage to the self inflicted ugly wounds of the story’s character, this band of persistent friends helped not only Renee, but began to define and fulfill TWLOHA’s vision including:

The vision is the possibility that your best days are ahead.

The vision is the possibility that we’re more loved than we’ll ever know.

The vision is hope, and hope is real.

You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story.

 

Lucy, I won’t let this be the end of Maggie’s story either . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on by Angela in disease, Exercise, Nutrition, Whole Food Leave a comment

What’s a probiotic?

 

 

PROBIOTICS

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What the H$%* are they and why do we need them?  I’m going to give you my own dumbed-down skinny on what they are and exactly how they can help us get healthier.

First, every organism on the planet is covered in microbes (those pesky little bacteria that live on our skin, in our guts, on our counters —etc).  Its normal!  We are supposed to be surrounded by all these little parasites exactly like we are surrounded by our leachy teenagers and our snot blowing kids —It’s natural and part of the whole  life experience.  We were all designed to have “healthy” bacteria to help us coexist in nature and that is totally cool.  Good Ole Mother Nature designed it that way and I’m convinced that she knew what she was doing!

Here are just a few of the healthy benefits that we get from these bacteria living on, around, and within us.

1.  They produce enzymes that kill bad bacteria (Eek -like the stomach flu)

2.  They produce substances that give the lining of the gut energy

3.  They boost immunity by giving us mucin (a component of mucous/snot) to help stomp out bad bacteria

4.  They down-regulate inflammation and free-radicals like crazy cousin Joe (see previous free radical post)

5.  They reduce the risk of allergy

These are all functions that the normal gut bacteria are designed to do for the human body.

These guys have so many more important functions but I fear boring you with the science of it all.  There’s a reference at the end of the post for all you science nerds like me!

Here’s the version that I dumbed down for my own little mind to digest!

1.  Our food supply has drastically changed since World War II—we are now using more corn and grain to feed our livestock.  We also used the leftover nitrogen from bomb making to fertilize our crops after the war.

2.  The US became much more industrialized after WWII and we started adding a lot of chemicals to improve the shelf life of foods

3.  This has gradually destroyed the lining of our gut (which I will better explain in another post)

4.  We now harbor bacteria in our GI tract that we aren’t use to having.  They are dysbiotic instead of symbiotic.

5.  Because we no longer harbor these “Good Bacteria” in our gut —we have increased inflammation and autoimmunity.

6.  The inflammation –now has to settle somewhere in our body if we don’t supply  it with good antioxidants as a defense mechanism.

7.  We are consuming foods that are no longer nutrient dense.  Even if we are eating healthy, our guts don’t have the correct bacteria to absorb the nutrients anymore.

So—-A first start at cleaning up The Gut– Probiotics

These are supplements with the good bacteria strains that have been killed off by our modern diet.  They do exactly what they are designed to do–help prevent disease, help absorb nutrients from food, help keep digestion regular etc.  These bad boys recolonize our Gut with the Good Bacteria.

So here is the final scoop–

If you eat a perfect diet of organic fruits, veggies, grass-fed meats and consume no processed foods—you might not need to take probiotics

But, if you are like the rest of us—you need these little buggers back in your gut to make and keep you healthy!

 

Here are the strains you want to look for in buying a probiotic

The Big 7!!!

1.  Lactobacillus Acidophillus

2.  Lactobacillus Ramnosus

3.  Lactobacillus Plantarum

4.  Lactobacillus Casei

5.  Bifidobacterium Longum

6.  Bifidobacterium Breve

7.  Saccharomyces boulardii

Probiotics can be found at your local drugstore or you can buy them HERE from Amazon

I’ll post more on benefits and the different digestive benefits of each strain –however this is your dirty little outline guide to refer to!

 

It seems to be a great idea to mix different brands of probiotic and then rotate them as well so I have added some of my new favorites to the list!

1.  Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra Ultimate Probiotics Formula

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2.  Advance Orthomolecular Research Advanced Series Probiotic 3

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3.  Ultimate Floraultimate flora

 

 

 

 

4.  VSL #3

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You can easily purchase these thru Amazon by clicking HERE

 

For more information:  see “Probiotics:  Why You Need Them and How to Choose Them” by Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Whole Food 1 Comment

Health Concerns of High Fructose Corn Syrup

High Fructose Corn Syrup—most of us are aware by now that we should avoid this when we are reading our grocery store labels.  Lately, I have been shocked at how many proclaimed “healthy” products actually contain it.  I thought I would share just a few more health risks associated with regular consumption of these products.

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I would like to share a brief excerpt from my favorite book “Bring Back Vitality” by Bea White and Lori Petrucciani ND

 

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Health Concerns if HFCS

1/3 of products that contain HFCS also contain mercury

HFCS is 45 % glucose which is more quickly absorbed but the body than sugar, causing a blood sugar spike.  This can lead to insulin resistance and diabetes

Weigh gain and obesity:  A 2010 Princeton University study found that high fructose corn syrup caused significantly more weight gain than regular sugar

Liver stress

Fat cell accumulation

Inflammation

High Blood Pressure

High lipid cholesterol

Alzheimer’s Disease

Type 2 Diabetes

This excerpt is from page 160 of this fabulous guide-book Bring Back Vitality —which is available for purchase on the store page of this WEBSITE

1463332_479461622169020_124370057_nAlso learn more by visiting their SITE.  Hats off to these two wellness warriors that took it upon themselves to write such an understandable guideline and handbook to overall wellness using Food As Medicine!

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Organic, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Bringing Sexy Back!

It happened again!  Another Ah Ha moment –How many of those are we supposed to get in a lifetime?  I thought I was on track until I opened Dr. Sara Gottfried’s new book “The Hormone Cure”.  Whammy-I read her words describing a 40 yo woman thinking she was going crazy.  The pitiful gal was forgetting things, craving sugar, gaining weight, and generally anxious/overwhelmed by the most trivial of tasks.  Yep my friends–Welcome to peri-menopause!  How refreshing it was to have a straightforward  answer to why I can’t  have fun and chill anymore.  I thought it was because I am a full-time working mother of 4 who was finally starting to crack.  Thankfully, I’ve learned that I am completely normal with common hormone imbalances for my (Yes-This is 40!) age.  The best news it that there is an easy fix!   I would highly recommend reading this book as it outlines the exact hormonal imbalances from which most of us are suffering.  I certainly have cortisol excess (caused by chronic stress) and  progesterone deficiency (the body’s natural Valium) due to peri-menopause.  Dr. Sara implements a distinct program targeted to each exact hormone imbalance .  She gives the reader a concise plan on how to eat, move, think ,and supplement to literally cure the symptoms.  It’s a great read and I strongly suggest it for any woman pre/post/ or peri-menopausal.  Finally, someone (a MD-no doubt) spells it out in terms we can understand and scenarios with which we can relate.  Get her Free Hormone Tool Kit— HERE

You can even take her Free Hormone Quiz —HERE

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Another great note—

Sean Croxton is bringing Sexy Back—Yeah!

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Check out his Sexy Back Summit HERE   It features answers from top experts on all of your most intimate sex and hormone questions!  I’ve had the opportunity to listen to some of his speakers and they are down and dirty with the nitty-gritty details!

My personal favorite is Dr. Anna Cabeca’s advice to men from JJ Virgin’s 7days 7 docs series.

Here’s a sneak preview:

 

Men—-How do you get your woman to initiate sex more?

 

It’s a simple answer—-cuddle and hold her for approximately 2 minutes after climax.  Why?  Because a woman’s oxytocin hormones raise leaving her feeling satisfied, loved, and yearning for more!!!  I’m sorry MEN, but, we don’t ask for much. Throw us a bone now and then! (no pun intended)

Apparently it works every time!!!  Good stuff I tell you-:

Sexy Back Summit  HERE

 

We are all in this together!  Life is a journey and we are constantly changing, learning, growing and hopefully sharing our experience!  And for your  viewing pleasure–Here is Justin (my top 5 celebrity crush)

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Whole Food Leave a comment

Hungry for Change

Hey guys!  Now is the second chance for all of you that didn’t get the opportunity to watch the full length documentary “Hungry for Change.”    If you are one of my current patients, you probably  being forced you to view the trailer to this film at your last physical. Then I inundated you with big stacks of healthy eating handouts and sent you on your way.  Well, a some of you opted to not Deep Six the stuff and actually read it.  Many have lost weight and gotten off of their chronic medicines!  Hooray!   This film exposes the hidden additives that are found in our food supply today.  It also features Jamie Oliver, aka The Naked Chef from Food Network, exposing the amount of sugar found in kid’s school milk.  It is definitely worth watching once and sharing with your family.  Even your kids should watch it.  It may subliminally implant the idea of being conscious of what is being put in and on your body.  Lord knows they probably aren’t going to listen to their parents any more than my family listens to me when I evangelize to them ad nauseam.  Think–this film may just save your life or someone’s close to you.

Click HERE  to purchase your own copy of the DVD.  Share with friends and family.  It is a powerful way to get the word out.  We all need to know this stuff.  It’s life saving46021227412386600_jVpk6Tc3_b

 

 

Here is the trailer

 

Posted on by Angela in Call to action, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

The Thyroid Sessions

Ok guys–so I am really excited about this one!!!  Sean Croxton (my Fromance-real food romance)  has put together an incredible compilation of the top docs in the country to teach us everything we need to know about thyroid disease.  I have so many patients with thyroid disease and I can’t believe the misconceptions about treatment in traditional medicine.  If you have any problems with your thyroid or even know someone who does —I really encourage you to register for The Thyroid Sessions–  Here is Sean’s plan and rundown for the Free Sessions–


Sean writes:

Your thyroid runs the show.  Most importantly, it controls your metabolism. That’s a pretty big deal…


When your thyroid isn’t functioning up to par it can leave you feeling exhausted, overweight, freezing, depressed, constipated, brain foggy, and more.

A few months ago I checked the statistics and found out that over 200 million people worldwide have a thyroid disorder. Only half have been properly diagnosed. And even less are receiving the right treatment.

Sadly, Western medicine has fallen behind when it comes to the latest research on the causes and treatments — both natural and synthetic — for thyroid problems.

And that’s why I’ve brought together a couple dozen of the world’s most knowledgeable experts to teach you EVERYTHING your doctor didn’t tell you about thyroid disorders.

And I mean everything

 

Chris Kresser reveals the shocking truth about “normal ranges”.

 

Dr. Dan Kalish walks you through a simple, inexpensive way to test your thyroid at home.

 

Dr. Kelly Austin shows you how to avoid fillers like gluten and lactose in thyroid meds.

 

Dr. Alan Christianson teaches you how to shrink thyroid nodules…naturally.

 

Christa Orecchio discusses real food and lifestyle strategies for hyperthyroid and Graves’ disease.

 

Dr. Sara Gottfried shows you how to lose weight when your thyroid is off.

 

 

 

The Thyroid Sessions will launch Sunday, May 4th and end Saturday, May 10th. The event will include: 

– 10 expert on-camera interviews 
– 2 cooking demos 
– 12-15 bonus web videos (Google Hangout recordings) 
– a few really cool features I’m keeping Top Secret for now 🙂 

Instead of our usual 24-hour free viewing period, I will be leaving the 10 interviews and 2 cooking demos open for viewing from Sunday thru Friday, making the final day (Saturday) an Encore Day for our most popular presentations. 

The 12-15 bonus videos will only be available to those who order The Thyroid Sessions Boxed Set, which will include the 10 on-camera interviews, cooking demos, transcripts, bonus videos, and other goodies.

 

Register for The Thyroid Sessions  HERE

Order The Thyroid Sessions Boxed Set  HERE

Posted on by Angela in disease, Nutrition, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

8 GMO Foods to Avoid

What is a GMO?

A GMO (genetically modified organism) is the product of a lab process that takes genes from on species and inserts them into another species to attain a desired trait.  Viruses or bacteria are used to infect animal or plant cells with the new DNA.  The DNA is coated with tiny metal pellets and shot into the cells.  Then, the new DNA is injected into fertilized eggs and electric shocks create holes in the membranes of sperm forcing the new DNA into the holes.  Although, no research on humans has shown detrimental effects from eating GMO foods, numerous studies on animals have shown immune damage, pre-cancerous cell growth and many unexplained anomalies.

For more information on the history of GMO’s visit HERE

Here are the top 8 GMO foods to avoid

1.  CORN– corn is the most prominent genetically modified crop here in the US.  Please know your farmer if you want good fresh sweet corn–and ask what type of seeds he uses.

2.  SOY–90% of soy is genetically engineered to be resistant to Monsanto’s Roundup.

3.  SUGAR–since 2009, genetically modified beets have been used to make beet sugar.

4.  ASPARTAME -not only is one of those toxic food additives, it is actually made from genetically modified bacteria.

5.  PAPAYAS—yep, this wonderful fruit is exported here from Hawaii since 1999 and is genetically modified to be resistant to the Ringspot virus.  They are banned in all European countries.

6.  CANOLA– canola is made from rapeseed which is one of the most chemically modified and adapted oils.

7.  DAIRY–  1/5 of all dairy cows are injected with rBGA growth hormone from Monsanto—Drink organic or plant-based.  Remember that 93% of all soy is GMO— Silk Brand Soy milk is non-GMO.

8.   ZUCCHINI AND YELLOW SQUASH– most are genetically modified to resist viruses.

Luckily, Connecticut and Maine have recently passed laws requiring manufacturers to label all products with Genetically Engineered ingredients.

4 Tips to avoiding GMO

1.  Buy organic–labels saying 100% organic or made with organic ingredients

2.  Buy Non GMO–labels saying “artificial hormone free”

3.  Avoid high risk ingredients–corn, soybean, canola, cottonseed, sugar beets, corn syrup

4.  Download shopping guide and get the app “ShopNoGMO”—a great app with plenty of good information and specific products to avoid.BagofNon-GMOGroceries

Posted on by Angela in Call to action, disease, Nutrition, Organic, Whole Food Leave a comment

Our Chemical Shitstorms

233d9d6a1763eac5a5d2f3df8e074914How many of us struggle with addiction?  I will be bold and say the number must be 90% or above.  I refer to addiction as anything that we can’t live without or obsess over–including tobacco, caffeine, sugar, drugs, alcohol, sex, bad relationships, negative thinking, impulsive behavior etc—I personally have kicked my diet mountain dew habit (it only took about a year) and like everyone else, I struggle daily with overcoming more unhealthy habits.  It certainly isn’t easy!   I am honored that my cohort addiction specialist, the infamous Mr. Jim Ryser, has privileged us with his own story to help us understand how diet, nutrition, thoughts, and mindset can heal addictive behaviors.

First-Here is a little background on Jim Ryser:

Jim Ryser began his music career at the tender age of 5 years old, learning to play violin to ease long hours spent in the hospital. Born with Spina Bifida Myelomeningocele and expected to live a poor quality and short life, Jim beat the odds due to a loving and caring family combined with an Irish tenacity that continues to this day.

Jim honed his musical skills during the recovery from over 50 surgeries he has had to correct problems associated with the original corrective procedure on his spinal cord when he was 9 days old.  

He played Madison Square Garden as a solo violinist when he was 9, but it was picking up the guitar at 14 that took him down the music path of rock and roll dreams.  “I played a lot of Rush and Pink Floyd, but I loved Fleetwood Mac and other more mellow rockers as well,” he says, “and I think that combined with my classical background made for some interesting stuff over the years!”

He signed his first record deal with Arista Records in 1990.  Music legend Clive Davis was heading up the label at the time and told Jim – then known as Jimmy – that he had hit songs and wanted Jim on the roster. “Same Old Look,” the first single released in 1990, reached #6 on the Billboard chart and sent he and his band on a wild summer tour with The Moody Blues, Henry Lee Summer, REO Speedwagon, and John Mellencamp.  He has played on some wonderful albums with John Mellencamp, Hall and Oates, and Tracy Chapman.  He has guested with James McMurtry, Henry Lee Summer, and Bob and Tom over the years.  

His health issues forced him to find another path; he had become addicted to his pain killers to combat the daily chronic pain associated with his spina bifida and related kidney, back, and orthopedic issues. Jim went through a pain program at the Cleveland Clinic and was able to learn new ways to deal with pain, such that he was inspired to acquire his college degree.  His addiction, however, lay hidden and by the time he graduated Indiana University Summa Cum Laude, he was on some of the same drugs that led to Michael Jackson’s demise, using up to 500 mg of IV Demerol and taking 10-20 percocet pills a day.  He hit bottom when he started drinking.  

He went back to Cleveland and got sober in the summer of 1999, which led him to his graduate degree and an internship with addiction and pain. His specialty is rare in that he knows both chronic pain and addiction personally and professionally, and this combination led him to his current position as the program manager for pain services at Indiana University Health Methodist Hosptial in Indianapolis, Indiana. He runs a pain rehabilitation program there and he also helps people with acute pain issues while further helping others who have become iatrogenically addicted.

He got back into music quite by accident, and he says, “I got into hunting with my son-in-law Troy, getting a turkey on my very first day in the woods – an hour after he got his.  I found that hunting did more for my pain management than anything else I ever did, so I spent time learning about deer hunting as well.”  This journey led him to Bill Winke, one of the best known hunter-writers in the business.  “I sent Bill a CD of my music in appreciation for the amazing work he does, and he asked if he could use some songs for his show, Midwest Whitetail.  I told him I would go one better and write some songs…Now I am the principal writer for most of Bill’s projects!

This match created a great relationship with the entire staff and lots of new songs, which then led to Jim updating his recording studio and investing in some more gear to custom design songs for Bill’s shows exclusively. These songs hatched more ideas, and a new CD was born. The new disc highlighted on this website is a culmination of Jim’s musical life, and he says, “Having many years of sobriety now, a deep love for both work and my hunting/music passion, gave me something that very few folks get – and I wasn’t even supposed to live.  I have remained on an incredible journey that makes me grateful for my pain and addiction, because they made me who I am today.”

Jim Ryser is a nationally recognized performer and speaker for both his musical and personal journey, and his expertise in managing pain for those who desire education about it.  He has spoken all over the country and has consulted with several health care systems on various ways to manage pain without the use of mood altering drugs.  

 

Here is Jim’s personal story that he chose to share with our followers that are empowering themselves to overcome disease–

 

“I wish I could say I “beat” addiction, but I can no more do that than stand on my toes unaided today.  I have myelomeningocele.  Long story short, I have damage to my spinal cord that resulted in neural connections being cut due to the original birth defect.  There ARE no connections so it is physiologically impossible for me to stand on my toes unaided!

As to my addiction, we have assumed in society that we can change unaided too; telling a drug addict not to use is the same thing as saying “Just don’t breathe!”  The addict has a compulsion to use and a craving once started that makes it impossible to stop on the basis of self-will.  There is no connection just like with the nerves!

I have been fortunate to have stopped using drugs aberrantly.  The thought process of the disease never goes away, but it can be managed.  I found that out after I got sober and gained 50 pounds.  My addiction switched seats on the titanic in many ways.  So – for me, addiction is less about substance and more about the thoughts and the spiritual malady that goes with it.  Moderation is not part of the addict’s vocabulary.  With help, however, I have been able to stay sober for the past 14 years.  I have also lost the weight and am continuing, a day at a time, to manage the unmanageable.  Having a proper diet helps keep me on task with my pain pill addiction and chronic pain because I learned in proper eating habits I might sacrifice a “feel good” with food (sugar) that results in a crash that makes me feel bad in the long run.  Today I have learned to slow down, do the RIGHT thing, and be rewarded over the long haul (and more consistent haul) with good health and overall good feeling.”

 

Please visit Jim’s website http://www.jimrysersongs.com

You may want to purchase a copy of his latest release “Lubricate my MoJo”

His next performance will be:

June 29, 2013
FREEDOM FESTIVAL!

http://greenwoodfreedomfestival.com

 

I can’t thank Jim enough for his honesty and committment to helping others in similar situations.  I have come across a few other different resources for anyone who would like to learn more on the topic.

This video by Paul Chek is helpful in learning why we become addicted to things—


It’s a bit long but helpful to anyone wanting to learn more about the etiology of addiction.

 

Also, a great resource is well-known psychiatrist’s Dr Hyla Cass’s book—

Dr Hyla Cass—Overcome Addiction, Fatigue, Anxiety, and Depression Naturally

hyla cass

Posted on by Angela in Body, Call to action, disease, Guest Blog, Nutrition, Whole Food 2 Comments

Chronic Pain Treatment Options

 

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Ok–I’m getting on my soap box for this one.  Recent research shows that prescription narcotic abuse has now superseded the use of street drugs.  In 2007, 2.5 million Americans used prescription pain killers for the first time compared to 2.2 million whom used marijuana for the first time.  In 2007, the drug Fentanyl (a narcotic 30-50x more powerful than heroin) killed more than 1000 people.

I admit that pain meds do serve a purpose in post surgical issues and in cancer therapy.  They may even be helpful short-term in some chronic pain conditions.  However, the root cause of the problem always needs to be addressed.

Recently, a fabulous patient with peripheral neuropathy turned me on to the use of compounded pain creams.  Unfortunately, Cathy has tried almost all treatments possible including diet changes, acupuncture, physical therapy and traditional meds including Lyrica and Neurontin.  She is morally opposed to taking narcotics and so she sought out a compounded pain cream.  On her most recent visit, she proclaimed to me that this was the first treatment that had actually given her some relief.  Much to my dismay, I had not come up with the idea first and so I have researched the best creams and begun prescribing them with fabulous results.

Please ask on your next visit if you might be a candidate for one of these topical compounds as I now have them in my arsenal of alternative therapies.

There are huge advantages to these products!

1.  They are delivered directly to pain receptors

2.  They are great for patients that have trouble swallowing pills

3.  There are fewer adverse side effects

4.  There is minimal systemic absorption

5.  They target multiple pain receptors at one site

6.  There are reduced drug/drug interactions

7.  These are  NONaddictive formulations

Posted on by Angela in disease, Pain, Whole Food Leave a comment