I’m always on at you about adrenal health, and getting enough sleep, and managing stress, aren’t I? But it’s because I care about you and it’s because it’s sooooooo important to your health. Today I’m going to outline for you 3 simple stress reduction techniques that you can do anywhere. If you can start your day with one or more of these, and end your day with one or more of these, I can promise that your days will be a little easier. A little bit goes a long way, and each of these techniques each only take a few minutes.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has done studies indicating that indoor air pollution is a more consistent threat to your health than outdoor pollution. This pollution comes primarily from volatile organic chemicals (VOC) like formaldehyde that are present in new building materials such as carpeting, paneling, cabinets, fabrics, etc. This pollution can be reduced with proper air filtration by an electronic air filter, by certain plants, or both. I wrote about my favorite air filters here, but I recommend you also think about having plants that promote clean air in your environment.
I wanted to let you know that for the month of April, I am offering 20% off my online course, Five Infections That Can Cause Behavioral Issues in Children!
Do you have a child, or know someone with a child, who struggles with behavioral issues? Cognitive challenges? Mood fluctuations? Other neurological issues?
My new online course, Five Infections That Can Cause Behavioral Issues in Children, will help you to understand one possible cause of such issues – chronic, underlying infections. And as an introductory special I am offering you 20% for the month of April.
The 2 ½ hour online class covers the following topics: [Read more…]
Hydrochloric acid (HCl) is normally secreted by the stomach to enhance the breakdown and subsequent absorption of the food and nutrients that we consume. HCl also serves a protective function, killing various pathogenic microorganisms that might otherwise cause infection in the gastrointestinal tract. Hydrochloric acid impacts your digestion significantly through these two factors – break down of food, and protection from external threats.
People with low HCl (hypochlorhydria) or absent HCl (achlorhydria) may be asymptomatic, or more commonly, may experience symptoms of impaired digestive function including gas, bloating and excessive fullness after meals. Interestingly, what seems to be excess acid in reflux or GERD is often a sign of low hydrochloric acid, but faulty regulation of the valve that divides the esophagus and stomach. [Read more…]
The importance of magnesium in the body cannot be overstated. Magnesium is involved in energy metabolism and hundreds of biochemical reactions – ranging from assisting in calcium and potassium uptake, to boosting immunity. It is crucial for the growth of white blood cells and decreasing the level of cell damaging free radicals in the body. There are some dietary sources of magnesium, and supplementation is helpful in certain cases. [Read more…]
I get a lot of liquid nutrition in the morning – in fact, I’ve downed three shots before I even get to my coffee! I have developed my three morning energy boost drinks over the months, and now it’s part of my regimen, I miss it when I don’t have them. There are times that I might skip them on the weekends, but every day during the week I take all three, without fail. It takes about 15 minutes, mostly because I allow a little time in between, and I just putz around putting the strewn toys away, packing the school bag etc etc in between steps. So what are they? Let me tell you.
Did you know that the common Strep bacteria can cause neurological issues in kids, including behavioral issues, obsessive-compulsive behaviors, vocal and motor tics, mood changes and more? This is due to an abnormal immune response to the bacteria, which provokes an auto-immune response. If your child had abrupt onset of aggressiveness, defiance, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) or other behavioral symptoms like anxiety and depression, they might have developed this disorder known as PANDAS. PANDAS and it’s impact on behavior in kids is an area that is still being explored – but as awareness grows, more children are getting the help they need.
Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus Infection, or PANDAS, may develop in children creating a wide symptomatic picture. Criteria for PANDAS includes an abrupt onset of symptoms in children before puberty, with parents often being able to recall a specific time that their child’s behavior had begun to change.
Presence of significant obsessions, compulsions, and/or tics seemingly pop up out of nowhere, which is a major diagnostic criterion for PANDAS. Other symptoms include emotional lability, deterioration in academic performance, personality changes, bedtime fears, bedwetting, fidgeting, sensory defensiveness, irritability, impulsivity, and distraction.
Research is showing that this disease process is 3X more common in young boys than girls. Group A Beta Hemolytic Streptococcus is the main bacterial offender, and symptoms usually appear within 6 weeks of infection.
How Does Strep Infection Become Auto-immune?
The auto-immune response happens through a process of molecular mimicry. What that means is that the strep bacteria start to take on some of the properties of our own cells, and our immune system gets confused as to who is the good guy (our own tissues) and who is the bad guy (the bacteria).
Our immune system creates antibodies against the strep bacteria. One of the parts of the bacteria that is tagged by our immune system has resemblance to a component of our neuronal cell membranes. Therefore, our immune system, despite trying to do the right thing, starts seeing our neuronal cell membranes as problematic and attacking them too. And that’s how strep bacteria can produce neurological problems.
Why do some children develop PANDAS while others do not?
This is a multi-faceted question, but it is hypothesized that children are more vulnerable based on the integrity of their blood-brain barrier. The blood-brain barrier is one of our defense systems to keep harmful substances out of the brain. If it is weakened, then those antibodies that have been created can more easily penetrate and have access to the neuronal tissues that they can react against, and thus damage. Toxicity is one of the major factors that weakens the blood-brain barrier; inflammation is another. Gluten can increase the permeability of the blood-brain barrier through increasing production of zonulin, a substance that makes the gut lining and the blood-brain barrier more leaky. You can read more about zonulin and the brain here.
If this sounds like your child, and you want to learn more about PANDAS including testing and treatment options, you might be interested in my new course, Five Infections That Can Cause Behavioral Issues in Children. Strep/PANDAS is one of the five covered, along with Candida, Clostridia, Borrelia (Lyme disease), and Bartonella.
No one likes a smelly, grimy kitchen – but many of the traditional cleaners are full of harsh chemicals and fake fragrances, all which can be highly toxic. Here are some ways to spruce your kitchen up with essential oils. They make great cleaning agents, and leave a natural, fresh scent. [Read more…]
I’ve written a couple of articles now about a patient of mine, Mrs R, and her story of recovery; in particular, her mindset around her recovery. Today I am happy to post another piece of her writing. It focusses on gratitude. More and more I am realizing that gratitude is the key to happiness. If we are grateful, no matter what the circumstances might be, it puts us in a place of contentment, openness and receptivity. I hope that this patient’s story of gratitude touches you and helps you to see the beauty and blessings in your own life. [Read more…]