Omega 3 Fatty Acids Cross the Blood Brain Barrier

December 5, 2013

human brainNew research from Karolinska Institute in Sweden shows that omega-3 fatty acids in dietary supplements can cross the blood brain barrier in people with Alzheimer’s disease, affecting known markers for both the disease itself and inflammation. The findings are presented in theJournal of Internal Medicine, and strengthen the evidence that omega-3 may benefit certain forms of this seriously debilitating disease. Click here to read more.

This is yet another published study that demonstrates how proper fatty acid balance in the blood stream can prevent and treat diseases with an inflammatory component.  The research to date points to benefit of the essential fatty acids in the following conditions:

Cardiovascular Health

  • Endocrine influence
  • Glucose maintenance
  • Lipids and triglycerides
  • Metabolic parameters
  • Primary prevention
  • Secondary prevention

Children’s Health and Development

  • Adolescent and teen health
  • ASD – Autism spectrum disorders
  • Attention, learning, and behavior
  • Disease prevention
  • Neurological development
  • Intelligence
  • Vision

Female Health and Reproduction

  • Peri-and post-menopause
  • Pregnancy & breastfeeding
  • Puberty and menstrual years

Immune Health

  • Acute infections
  • Allergies
  • Chronic immune deficiencies

Joint and Tissue Inflammation

  • Intestinal health
  • Joint flexibility & mobility

Lifestyle and Healthy Living

  • Alcohol and tobacco use
  • Body fat/weight
  • Fitness
  • Healthful living
  • Stress

Mental/Neurological Health

  • CNS Developement
  • Cognitive function/agent
  • Depression and mood
  • Mental balance

In our concierge medical practice we test the blood for over 30 fatty acids to identify what specifically is out of balance and needs treatment. In some patients, too many of the omega 3 fatty acids can suppress important components of immune function and can promote tumor growth.  In some patients their level of trans fatty acids (hydrogenated fats) are the culprit in blocking cell to cell communication.  Other patients  may only need DHA but not GLA.  And so forth. This is why testing, and getting an individualized report on what your body needs, will lead to a more positive outcome in terms of managing your long term health.

In health,

Dr. Gina


Pesticides and Endometriosis

November 5, 2013

FishJumpingoutofBowlToxicWhy some women and not others get endometriosis — the growth of uterine tissue outside the uterus that can cause pain and infertility — is not known, but researchers have come up with one possible contributing factor: pesticide poisoning.

Scientists studied 248 women with surgically confirmed endometriosis and 538 healthy controls. They measured blood levels of two pesticides, mirex and beta HCH, which persist in some fish and dairy products even though their use in the United States has been banned for decades. The study appears online in Environmental Health Perspectives.

The researchers found that women with the highest exposure to mirex had a 50 percent increased risk for endometriosis, and those exposed to high levels of beta HCH a 30 to 70 percent increased risk.

Read more here.

This study points to the importance of thinking about the long-term impact that pesticides and other environmental pollutants have on our health.  This particular pesticide, Mirex, has been banned for twenty plus years, yet it is increasing the risk of endometriosis and associated infertility today. The effects of these chemicals linger and get stored in the food supply, the soil, our cells.

The good news is that the more information is released like this, and the more aware we are,  the more we, as scientists, healthcare professionals, farmers, and consumers, will focus (hopefully) on less toxic means of managing pests in our environment.

In health,

Dr. Gina


How to Avoid the 12 Known Chemicals that Cause Hormone Imbalance

November 2, 2013

pesticideThe Environmental Working Group has published an excellent article detailing the 12 most common chemicals in our environment that cause hormone disruption leading to everything from cancer to infertility to shrunken testicles…and actions you can take today to help protect yourself and your family from harm.

The first step is to remove the source of the chemicals if you can. Read here to learn more.

The second step is to support the body’s natural detoxification processes daily, and seasonally, through medically supervised detoxification programs that are customized to your specific situation, your lab test results and your metabolism.

No one can afford to ignore this issue. Chemicals in our environment can cause irreversible harm to our health, if we allow it.

In health,

Dr. Gina


BPA and the Risk of Miscarriage

October 16, 2013

New research suggests that high levels of BPA, a chemical in many plastics and canned food linings, might raise the risk of miscarriage in women prone to that problem or having trouble getting pregnant.

The work is not nearly enough to prove a link, but it adds to “the biological plausibility” that BPA might affect fertility and other aspects of health, said Dr. Linda Giudice, a California biochemist who is president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. The study was to be presented Monday at the group’s annual conference in Boston. Last month, ASRM and an obstetricians group urged more attention to environmental chemicals and their potential hazards for pregnant women.

BPA, short for bisphenol-A, and certain other environmental chemicals can have very weak, hormone-like effects. Tests show BPA in nearly everyone’s urine, though the chemical has been removed from baby bottles and many reusable drink containers in recent years. The federal Food and Drug Administration says BPA is safe as used now in other food containers. Read more by clicking here.

When treating infertility one arm of treatment involves detoxification and removing exposure to chemicals such as BPA (there are many more) that alter hormone balance and affect fertility.

In health,

Dr. GinaImage


Exercise as Beneficial or Better Than Drug Intervention for Common Cardiovascular Ailments

October 10, 2013

RunningNatureA structured exercise program may be as good or better than frequently prescribed drugs for some common cardiovascular ailments, a large meta-analysis has found.

Researchers evaluated 57 randomized trials testing the effect on mortality of exercise and drugs in four prevention regimens: the secondary prevention of coronary heart disease, rehabilitation from stroke, treatment of heart failure, and prevention of Type 2 diabetes. The review, published online in BMJ, involved more than 14,000 patients.

The studies used a variety of drugs – for example, statins for the prevention of coronary heart disease, blood thinners for stroke, diuretics for heart failure, and biguanides like Glucophage and Metaglip for impending diabetes.

They found no difference in mortality between exercise and drug interventions in the secondary prevention of coronary heart disease or Type 2 diabetes.

For stroke prevention, exercise programs were more effective than anticoagulants or antiplatelet medicines.

And for treating heart failure, diuretic drugs were more effective than exercise.

Click here for more.

Given the massive cost burden on our health care system for prescription medications used to treat chronic illnesses, this data will hopefully encourage doctors and patients to turn to exercise when appropriate, as an alternative option to manage heart disease, stroke or Type 2 diabetes.

In health,

Dr. Gina


ADHD Linked to Allergies and Asthma in Boys

September 25, 2013

autismBoys diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder are more likely also to have asthma, allergies and skin infections than youngsters without ADHD, a new study finds, suggesting a possible link between these conditions. Of those in the study, boys newly diagnosed with ADHD were 40 percent more likely to have asthma, 50 percent more likely to have needed a prescription for allergy medicine and 50 percent more likely to have had a bacterial skin infection than other boys. “Our study provides additional evidence to support the hypothesis that atopic disorders, such as asthma and food allergies increase the risk of developing ADHD,” the authors wrote, adding that further research is necessary to determine just how these conditions might be connected. Their results were published in the August issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Read more here.

Naturopathic Medical Doctors have seen this connection for a long time. Inflammatory conditions such as asthma and allergies trigger behavioral disorders.  To successfully treat ADHD we must address allergies, and additional underlying factors that cause inflammation.

In health,

Dr. Gina


Orange Juice and Cancer Prevention

September 23, 2013

OrangeSurgeonGeneralWarningIn a forthcoming review article from Nutrition and Cancer: An International Journal, a publication of Routledge, researchers review available evidence that links orange juice with cancer chemoprevention. The review article, “Orange Juice and Cancer Chemoprevention” discusses the putative mechanisms involved in the process, the potential toxicity of orange juice, and the available data in terms of evidence-based medicine.

Orange juice has many potential positive effects when it comes to cancer, particularly because it is high in antioxidants from flavonoids such as hesperitin and naringinin. Evidence from previous in vitro studies has indicated that orange juice can reduce the risk of leukemia in children, as well as aid in chemoprevention against mammary, hepatic, and colon cancers. Biological effects of orange juice in vitro are largely influenced by the juice’s composition, which is dependent on physiological conditions of the oranges such as climate, soil, fruit maturation, and storage methods post-harvest.  Read more by clicking here.

Oranges grown organically have higher levels of antioxidants and nutrients that help the body to fight off cancer.  The more the oranges are processed (e.g. pasteurized, “10% juice”), the lower the levels of cancer fighting chemicals.  Fresh squeezed orange juice or whole organic oranges are best.

In health,

Dr. Gina


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