The Candida and Fungus Among Us!

 

By Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D

 

  • Do you regularly experience any of the following symptoms- bloating, headaches, depression, fatigue, memory problems, impotence or loss of libido, unexplained muscle aches, brain “fogginess”?

 

  • Do you crave sweets, products containing white flour, or alcoholic beverages?

 

  • Do you have repeated vaginal infections?

 

  • Do you repeatedly experience any of these health difficulties- inappropriate drowsiness, mood swings, rashes, bad breath, dry mouth, post-nasal drip or nasal congestion, heartburn, urinary frequency or urgency?

 

  • Do you have repeated fungal infections (“jock itch,” athlete’s foot, ringworm)?

 

  • Have you recently taken repeated courses of antibiotics or steroids (e.g. cortisone)?

 

  • Have you used birth-control pills?

 


If you answered yes to two or more of these questions then you may be suffering from a common yet drastically under-diagnosed condition: Candidiasis.  It is estimated that one in every two people will be affected by Candidiasis in their lifetime but many will not be aware of it or may even think that the symptoms are all in their head.  The unfortunate reality is that many people who seek medical advice from their health care providers are told that there is absolutely nothing wrong with them.  This is due to the fact that the mainstream medical establishment has been slow to recognize Candidiasis as a real issue; the Integrative Medicine community, however, has been treating the condition successfully for decades.  If you feel that you’re one of the many who have suffered without validation or relief from this life-altering illness, please read on.

Candidiasis is the medical term for yeast overgrowth.  We all have bacteria living in our intestinal tract- some of which we consider to be “good”, such as acidophilus and Bifidobacteria, and some of which we consider to be “bad”, such as Candida albicansCandida albicans is a form of yeast that can be dangerous to the body if it spreads.  In order to prevent this from happening, the “good” bacteria produces antifungal substances that keep the “bad” bacteria in check.  This “good” bacteria also ferments carbohydrates into lactic acid, which maintains an ideally balanced pH within the intestines to keep Candida albicans at bay.  As long as the “good” bacteria co-exist with the “bad” bacteria in healthy ratios and the intestinal pH is correctly balanced, the GI tract can live in peace.  Havoc occurs, however, when the pH balance shifts and the “good” bacteria become attacked.

Proper pH balance is vital for so many reasons.  If the body becomes too acidic (a condition known as acidosis), it adversely affects the functioning of all its parts: heart cells, blood cells, brain cells, nerve cells, muscle cells, bone cells, skin cells, hair cells and hormonal levels. It also creates a hostile environment with less available oxygen – a condition key to the growth of microorganisms such as Candida albicans.  As the bacteria fueled by these new, toxic conditions die off, the toxic waste produced by their decomposition further contributes to the already acidic environment.  This cycle continues on and on into a situation with potentially grave consequences.  Researchers suspect that most degenerative diseases including cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, acid reflux and heartburn can be contributed to chronic acidosis.

While an imbalanced pH creates the perfect battleground for the “bad” bacteria to spread, a number of other enemies are waiting in the wings to take aim at the “good” bacteria.

The single largest enemy of “good” bacteria is sugar, which can single-handedly weaken the immune system, thereby weakening the “good” bacteria.  But the sugar doesn’t stop there!  This sweet invader packs a dangerous one-two punch and feeds the “bad” bacteria, encouraging it to proliferate throughout the gastrointestinal tract.  Since a weakened immune system generally goes hand-in-hand with illness, antibiotics or steroids may be administered, which further takes its toll on the “good” bacteria, killing the illness-causing bacteria along with the vital “good” bacteria.  Once the “good” bacteria are out of the picture, the “bad” bacteria are able to take over and sink its teeth into the intestinal walls, eventually breaking down the barrier that exists between the bowel and rest of the body.  This intestinal breach then opens up the flood gates for toxic debris, yeast waste products, and partially digested proteins to enter the bloodstream, resulting in allergic and toxic reactions all over the body – the symptoms of which could manifest themselves differently for every person.

Dietary factors play a key role in the survival of Candida albicans.  These “bad” bacteria thrive on sugar and as a result, intense sugar cravings may ensue.  Likewise, dairy foods can be excellent supporters for Candida albicans for two reasons: (1) Non-organic dairy products contain traces of antibiotics, which can kill the “good” bacteria that have managed to survive and (2) dairy products contain the sugar lactose, which is one of Candida albicans’ preferred meals, feeding the bacteria and further encouraging it to grow and spread.  Other products that cause Candida albicans to grow are yeast and glutens that also convert into sugar.

Environmental factors can also be big supporters of Candida alibans’ proliferation.  Exposure to pollutants such as pesticide residues, car exhaust, industrial chemicals and heavy metals (particularly those found in mercury amalgam dental fillings) may encourage the growth of these “bad” bacteria.

Because Candidiasis suppresses the immune system, symptoms of the illness span a broad range and include chronic fatigue; weight gain; mental issues such as depression, anxiety, irritability, confusion, loss of memory, and severe mood swings; digestive problems including gas, bloating, cramps, chronic diarrhea, constipation, and heartburn; respiratory issues including food and airborne allergies, asthma, nasal or lung congestion, sinus pressure, hay fever, coughing; recurrent fungal infections (“jock itch”, athlete’s foot, ringworm, fingernail or toenail fungus) or vaginal/urinary infections; skin problems including rashes, hives, acne and scaly skin; migraines, headaches and sleep disturbances.

Everyone is at risk of developing Candidiasis; however, people with weakened immune systems (whether from severe illness or chronic stress), those with diets high in sugars and carbohydrates, anyone who has taken repeated courses of antibiotics or steroids, women currently taking oral birth-control medications or who have taken them in the past, and women of child-bearing age are most at risk.

Diagnosing Candidiasis can be tricky as the symptoms of this condition mimic the symptoms of many other illnesses.  I generally consider several factors before pronouncing a diagnosis of Candidiasis: medical history, a physical examination, lab test results and failure to respond to previous treatments.  If I am then able to come to an adequate conclusion, I immediately begin my patients on a treatment protocol.  Catching the condition in its early stages and commencing treatments immediately can be vital to heading off the more serious diseases that yeast overgrowth can lead to (diabetes, osteoporosis, heart disease, acid reflux, heartburn and even cancer).

My Healthy Recommendations:

Treating Candidiasis requires a degree of commitment but with dedication it is completely possible to reverse the condition.

The first step in any treatment plan begins with some key dietary changes.  Sugar is the main fuel for Candida albicans, therefore it must be removed out of the diet completely. A “Candida Diet” requires that sugar; alcohol; milk and dairy products; and foods containing mold and yeast must all be avoided.  These foods actively encourage the growth of Candida albicans and the condition cannot be properly resolved as long as the “fuel” remains in place.

Supplements for Candidiasis:

Because the problem with yeast overgrowth is directly linked to imbalanced pH levels, it is necessary to attack the problem from both angles.  Therefore, I also recommend that people take a combination of supplements that target both of these issues.

 1. pH Plus™ by perfectlyhealthy:  The cesium chloride and rubidium chloride in pH Plus™ are alkalizing minerals and, when combined with potassium penetrate, into the cells, raising their pH and oxygen content to a more normal, healthier, disease-resistant state. 

2.  Mega Greens with MSM™ by perfectlyhealthyMega Greens plus MSM™ contains alkaline forming ingredients to help balance your body’s pH, while providing you with the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, and plant proteins you need for cell support. 

3.  Metabolic Rx™ by perfectlyhealthy: Metabolic Rx™ is a synergistic blend of glandular tissues, vitamins, minerals, herbs, digestive enzymes and antioxidants formulated to support the pancreas function and help regulate blood sugar levels.  This important supplement can help boost your immune system if blood sugar is an issue while also minimizing those sugar cravings that tend to occur in people with Candidiasis.

4. Flora Med™ and Flora Max™ by Advanced Naturals- FloraMed™ is good for everyday and Flora Max™ for more advanced cases. Both of these supplements utilize BIO-tract™ delivery technology to safely deliver “good” bacteria to the intestines where they are able to repopulate the environment with beneficial microorganisms.

 Other targeted Candida treatment includes: Cumandra, Candida Plex, Phytostan, ThreeLac or Freeze Dried Garlic.

 To learn more about my Candida Treatment Protocol, the Candida Diet or any of the supplements mentioned above, please visit my website at http://www.perfectlyhealthy.net.  When you suspect that you may be living with a Candida problem, don’t put off speaking with your physician.  While this condition is entirely treatable, the consequences of delaying treatment are too high to ignore.  See your doctor and begin the process of restoring balance in your intestines, your body and your life!

 Dr. Connealy is the medical director of South Coast Medical Center for New Medicine in Irvine, California. The center strives to look at the whole person and explore the effects and relationships among nutrition, psychological and social factors, environmental effects and personal attunement. Visit them online at http://www.scmedicalcenter.com.

C Your Way To Good Health

C Your Way To Good Health

By Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D.

Hear the phrase “vitamin C” and you might conjure up images of orange trees, grapefruits and someone shaking an ice-cold container of OJ, fresh from the source, and covered in cool drops of water.  Refreshing citrus and maybe even avoiding a cold or the flu- these are things that people generally associate with vitamin C.  But did you know that this powerful antioxidant can also lower your risk of heart disease, stroke and even cancer?  It’s never been so easy to C your way to good health!

The importance of vitamin C has been known for centuries, going back to the late 1700s when sailors in the British Navy began dying of scurvy caused by a severe deficiency of vitamin C.  Vitamin C wouldn’t actually be isolated and identified until the 1930s, but what the sailors knew at the time was that eating oranges could cure scurvy.  Today, incidences of scurvy are scarce in the US but can still be found in the elderly population.  Symptoms of a vitamin C deficiency include dry skin and hair, gingivitis, easy bruising, wounds that heal slowly, nosebleeds, swollen and painful joints, and a decreased ability to fight infections.

In the nearly 80 years since vitamin C’s discovery we’ve learned enough about the nutrient to fill volumes.  Here are some of the most notable facts about this amazing vitamin…

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. 

Antioxidants are nature’s way of fighting off potentially dangerous molecules in the body.  Such molecules come in the form of synthetic chemicals such as pesticides, plastics, and chlorine byproducts and are called free radicals.  Free radicals are unstable molecules that essentially feed off of otherwise healthy molecules in order to survive.  Every day tens of thousands of free radicals are generated within the body, causing cell damage that can lead to chronic and degenerative diseases if left unchecked.

The body sometimes creates its own free radicals in order to destroy viruses or bacteria.  To balance out these unruly molecules, the body also creates antioxidants, which have the sole purpose of neutralizing free radicals.  The body is only designed to create a certain amount of antioxidants on its own, however, and as we are faced with an ever-growing number of environmental toxins, the body is less capable of fighting off the unwanted harmful invaders.

Vitamin C provides the body with the added antioxidants that are needed to properly wage war against free radicals.  Without enough vitamin C, free radicals can spread and eventually lead to stroke, heart attack, arthritis, vision problems, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and various types of cancer.

Vitamin C is excellent for your heart. 

The First National Health and Nutrition Examination Study found that the risk of death from cardiovascular disease was 42% lower in men and 25% lower in women who consumed 300 mg/day of vitamin C.   Another study found that patients who took 500 mg/day of vitamin C were able to lower their systolic blood pressure by 9% after 4 weeks.  Vitamin C is so good for cardiovascular health that it has also been found to significantly reduce LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and increase HDL (“good”) cholesterol as well as decrease the number and size of blood clots in veins.

Vitamin C lowers your risk of cancer.

Studies show that high intakes of vitamin C are associated with decreased incidence of cancers of the mouth, throat and vocal chords, esophagus, stomach, colon-rectum and lung.  In these studies, the most significant risk reductions occurred in people consuming at least 80 to 110 mg of vitamin C daily.  Some studies suggest that even higher amounts may prove to be beneficial.  In the Nurses Health Study, premenopausal women with a family history of breast cancer who consumed an average of 205 mg/day of vitamin C had a 63% lower risk of breast cancer than those who consumed an average of 70 mg/day.

In the 1970’s and 80’s, Nobel laureate Linus Pauling Ph.D. conducted a series of research studies into the effects of vitamin C on cancer.  His studies found that extremely high doses of vitamin C (10 grams/day intravenously for 10 days followed by 10 grams/day orally indefinitely) were helpful in increasing the survival time and improving the quality of life of terminal patients.  Pauling’s findings were exciting news in the medical community and the implications were encouraging for further research.  In the 1980’s however, the Mayo Clinic tried to replicate his findings and were unable to.  For several decades the prospect of vitamin C having cancer-fighting implications was essentially shelved. 

All of that changed a few years ago, however, when it came to light that the two studies were conducted in a slightly different manner: the Pauling study administered the vitamin both intravenously and orally while the Mayo Clinic study only administered the vitamin orally.  This lead to a 2004 study conducted by the US government’s National Institute of Health (NIH), which found that how vitamin C is administered is directly related to how much the body is able to use.  It was found that blood concentrations of vitamin C administered intravenously were 6.6 times higher than when the same amount was taken orally.  This lead the NIH scientists to conclude in their paper (published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, April 2005) that, “the efficacy of vitamin C treatment cannot be judged from clinical trials that use only oral dosing,” and that, “the role of vitamin C in cancer treatment should be reevaluated”.  Based on the NIH’s conclusions, several studies are currently underway exploring the use of vitamin C in cancer treatments.

Vitamin C can be found in foods, taken orally or taken intravenously.  Foods such as green peppers, citrus fruits, strawberries, tomatoes, broccoli, leafy greens, sweet and white potatoes and cantaloupe are especially high in vitamin C.  It is important to note that the body cannot manufacture or store vitamin C, therefore it is necessary to make sure that you are getting enough from your daily eating plan and through supplementation.  The recommended daily allowance for women is currently 75 mg/day and for 90 mg/day for men.  Those who are likely to require more vitamin C daily include people with poor eating habits, those who consume alcohol, diabetics, people exposed to heavy metals and those who smoke.  Discuss with your doctor the benefits of increasing your daily intake of vitamin C.

Getting enough vitamin C each day is an easy way to take care of your body and fight off future illness.  So grab an orange and C your way to good health!

 Dr. Connealy is the Medical Director of South Coast Medical Center for New Medicine in Irvine, California.  The center strives to look at the whole person and explore the effects and relationships among nutrition, psychological and social factors, environmental effects and personal attunement.  For more information on her clinic, please visit http://www.scmedicalcenter.com or call (949) 680-1880.

A Joint Effort

A Joint Effort

By Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D.

OC Health Magazine

 Are you one of the nearly 46 million adults living with arthritis?  Do you suspect that you might have the disease but are afraid to find out?  Arthritis is a serious chronic health problem and the nations leading cause of disability among Americans over the age of 15, yet with a proper diagnosis and an aggressive treatment plan, arthritis can be managed and pain and damage can be minimized.  As a matter of fact, there are many simple and effective steps that you can take on your own right now to improve the quality of your life, even with a diagnosis of arthritis.

Last year nearly one in five adults were living with arthritis and 300,000 children were afflicted with a juvenile form of the disease.  Arthritis is an umbrella term that encompasses over 100 different conditions that affect the muscles and bones.  Translated literally, arthritis means joint inflammation, and includes the two most common conditions, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis as well as some of the less common conditions such as fibromyalgia, lupus, gout, bursitis and tendonitis.  While the common thread between arthritic conditions is that they all affect the muscoskeletal system and primarily the joints, many forms of arthritis can be systemic, causing damage to the heart, lungs, kidneys, blood vessels and skin. 

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis and affects approximately 21 million adults.  OA usually comes on slowly, beginning with achiness in the joints due to inflammation after physical work or exercise.  Over time, the achiness can develop into pain, and stiffness may result after a period of rest or inactivity.  Swelling or tenderness may appear and a crunching sound could occur when the affected joint is used.

The culprit in OA is a loss of joint cartilage, the tissue that cushions the ends of bones within the joint.  While the cause is unknown, in people with OA the cartilage begins to fray and may eventually wear away completely causing the debilitating joint pain and stiffness.  When these less common joints become affected, it can typically be traced back to an injury or unusual stress (such as a work-related, repetitive action).

OA can occur in children but usually affects adults.  In men, OA occurs mostly before the age of 45, however in women the disease occurs mostly after the age of 45.  Risk factors for OA include obesity, improper joint alignment and certain diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. Root causes may also include food allergies, a diet high in fats or eating the foods that promote an acidic environment, poor digestion, and hormone imbalances.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the second most common form of arthritis, affecting roughly 2.1 million adults in the US.  RA is considered an autoimmune disease because the body’s immune system attacks the healthy joint tissue causing joint damage and inflammation.  The exact cause of RA is unknown, but researchers have found that the disease can be triggered by an infection in people who have an inherited tendency for the disease.

The major differences between OA and RA lie in the way that the disease presents itself.  As with OA, RA causes joint tenderness and inflammation as well as pain and stiffness.  Unlike OA, however, RA presents itself in a “symmetrical pattern”, meaning that the symptoms occur in both sides of the body at the same time.  For example, both knees will be concurrently inflamed.  RA can also be accompanied by a fever and a general sense of not feeling well.  Perhaps the greatest difference between the two conditions is the fact that RA has periods of remission while OA will not go away.

RA is caused by an inflammation in the joint lining and in some people, the infection can lead to inflammation of the tear glands, salivary glands, the lining of the heart and lungs and the lungs themselves.  The inflammation associated with RA most often affects the joints of the hands and feet however no joints are immune.  RA is 2-3 times more common in women than in men. 

Arthritis Treatments

The Arthritis Foundation’s, “Principles of Arthritis Management”, proclaims the following:

 1.  There is no best treatment for everyone who has a particular type of arthritis, as each individual may respond differently to different treatments.

 2.  Something can always be done to improve the situation for a person with arthritis.

The main goals of arthritis treatment are to minimize the damage resulting from the disease and to manage pain effectively.  Getting an early diagnosis is vital to your treatment plan as the earlier you are able to begin treatments the better your results may be.  Treatment plans can consist of medication, weight management, exercise, use of heat or cold, and methods to protect joints from further damage.

Making some alterations to your eating plan can have a significant affect on the symptoms of arthritis.  Foods high in saturated fats and refined sugars promote an inflammatory response within the body.  The worst offenders include fatty cuts of red meat, fried foods, snacks containing partially hydrogenated oils, margarine, butter, high sugar foods and foods containing refined flour.  On the other hand, fruits and vegetables high in antioxidants (such as green peppers, citrus fruits, strawberries, tomatoes, broccoli, leafy greens, sweet and white potatoes and cantaloupe) and healthy fats from cold-water fish (salmon and mackerel, for example), flax-seed, olive oil, avocados and nuts can help reduce the inflammatory process.   Eating fiber-packed foods such as raw vegetables and whole grains help to sweep away mineral and acid build-up while sulfur-rich foods, including asparagus, cabbage, garlic and onions, can help to repair cartilage and bone.  Since dehydration has been linked to arthritis pain, it is also a good idea to drink a glass of water every two hours that you are awake to keep cartilage lubricated and healthy.

One protocol that I recommend while living with arthritis or joint pain:

  •  perfectlyhealthy Osteo Plus™ with nutrient rich calcium and K2 (menaquinone-7)
  • perfectlyhealthy pH Plus™  with Cesium and Rubidium & Potassium Citrate to help absorption
  • perfectlyhealthy Mega Greens™ with MSM, which has natural anti-inflammatory benefits and contains sulfur, an integral component of cartilage
  • Carlsons™ Super 2 Daily- Fish Oil Multi-vitamin™ – Fish Oil Multi Vitamin (EPA & DHA)
  • Sun Ten Arthroplex with glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin to help rebuild cartilage tissue, assist in proper joint function and relieve joint pain and swelling

 If you experience joint pain, stiffness and/or swelling for more than 2 weeks, you may have arthritis.  Contact your physician today to discuss your symptoms and testing options.  The earlier that arthritis is diagnosed the earlier treatments can begin.  Don’t be one of the millions limited by this severely debilitating disease.  Take action today!

 

Dr. Connealy is the medical director of South Coast Medical Center for New Medicine in Irvine, California. The center strives to look at the whole person and explore the effects and relationships among nutrition, psychological and social factors, environmental effects and personal attunement. Visit them online at http://www.scmedicalcenter.com.  For more information on the supplements mentioned, please visit http://www.perfectlyhealthy.net.

 

Take the Burn out of Heartburn

Take the Burn out of Heartburn

A natural solution to heal the stomach & stop the burn

By Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D.

 According to the National Institute of Health, approximately 25 million Americans are suffering from heartburn each year.  With such a large number of the population afflicted with this painful and potentially dangerous health problem, chances are that you are represented in this statistic.  Over the past decade pharmaceutical companies have lead us to believe that the cause of this heartburn epidemic is an overproduction of stomach acid and doctors are writing millions of “acid blocker” prescriptions each year aimed at easing the symptoms of acid reflux.  Ironically however, low stomach acid levels, not excessive levels, may very well be causing your heartburn.  And further more, the very act of “blocking” your stomach acid production can have disastrous consequences for your health down the road.

Acid reflux is often incorrectly thought of as a stomach acid disease, but actually it is the result of a malfunctioning muscle called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES).  The LES is a flap that separates the base of the esophagus from the top of the stomach and opens only to allow food and liquids to pass down or vomit or gas to pass up.  When the LES is functioning properly it will remain closed at all other times, sealing off the esophagus from the harmful acids in the stomach.  When the LES is malfunctioning however, the corrosive stomach acids are able to make their way into the esophagus where they burn the esophageal lining.  Over time this can lead to ulcers, swelling and even cancer.  Many things can lead to LES malfunction: the consumption of nicotine, caffeine, chocolate, certain drugs, eating large meals, obesity, hernia (hiatal), alcohol, food allergies and low stomach acid.

It may be hard for you to move away from the popular misconception that an overproduction of stomach acid is causing your heartburn.  After all, it’s been drilled into our heads for years and all of the medications available to treat acid reflux work by either neutralizing or blocking the offending acids.  But consider this:  As we age our stomach acid levels decline.  When we are in our teens these levels are at their very highest, around 175mg/hr.  However, by the time we hit our 30’s the levels have declined to an average of 100 mg/hr and once we’ve hit our 60’s the levels are as low as 50 mg/hr.  Yet, do you recall having heartburn in your teens or early 20’s?

When I explain the real culprit of heartburn to my patients I often hear the same question: “Since I’ve started taking an acid blocker I’ve had relatively no heartburn but that doesn’t make sense based on what you’ve told me.  How can you explain this?”  The answer is, when you block the production of stomach acid there isn’t any acid to reflux into the esophagus.  So, while the cause of heartburn isn’t an overproduction of acid, by shutting off (or slowing down) acid production you are minimizing the chance that the acid can harm the esophagus.  However, this does nothing for the initial problem of the malfunctioning LES.  Should you cease taking the acid blocking medication, your heartburn will return almost immediately.

I go on to explain to the patient that, while their medication may be working temporarily, the damage that it’s causing to their body can be extremely dangerous over the long term.  Stomach acid plays an important role in both digestion and our overall health and by blocking its production we are essentially starving the body of life sustaining nutrients.

Stomach acid is absolutely vital to digestion, breaking down valuable nutrients in our food so that they can be more easily absorbed into the bloodstream.  These nutrients, such as amino acids, minerals and vitamins, are necessary to power the cells in our body.  Without an adequate amount of nutrients the cells will not function properly.

Once the food has been broken down in the stomach it passes into the small intestines where it triggers the secretion of hormones that are necessary to continue the digestive process.  The same acid that broke down the food in the stomach is a key component to triggering these hormones.  If there is not enough acid present in the food once it’s made its way to the small intestines, these hormones will not be triggered and the digestive process will not be successful. The overall effect of low stomach acid production is the ultimate starvation of your body.

Just as stomach acid is vital to digestion, it is also a powerful protector of your entire GI tract.  Inside the various organs of the GI tract reside bacteria that is harmful to the stomach but necessary to the organ that it lives in.  When proper acid levels are present the bacteria cannot survive in the stomach, but if acid levels are too low then this harmful bacteria can thrive.  If the bacteria spreads it can excrete toxic substances into the entire body. Taking a digestive enzyme after meals may be the key as well.

Research has shown that over time low stomach acid can lead to a wide range of serious diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, type 1 diabetes, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, allergies, skin disorders, and depression. 

The good news is that acid reflux can be treated naturally and safely by getting to the root of the cause.  When a patient comes to me complaining of heartburn the first thing that I do an extensive background to find out what might be causing their LES to malfunction. When a patient has a heavy feeling in their chest after eating, or heartburn a few hours after eating or acid reflux it becomes clear.  So many times I find that food allergies play a factor in the problem and by simply eliminating those foods from their normal eating plan we can correct the problem.  As there might be multiple causes for the problem, the solution will often involve a combination of nutritional supplements to get the patient back on track.  

Once we have developed a treatment plan, weaning the patient of their prescription acid-blocker becomes key to a full recovery.  I generally recommend that the patient begin by decreasing their medication to every other day during the first week, then down to only twice a week in the second week, once a week in the third and finally stopping the medication completely in week four.  During this time I place the patient on an all-natural supplement designed specifically to treat the effects of heartburn and indigestion called perfectlyhealthy Acid Ease™.  This is a proprietary blend with ingredients that include L-Glutamine, Aloe Vera Leaf, deglycerized Licorice Root, Bismuth Citrate, Slippery Elm Bark, Okra Leaf and Fenugreek Seed. Patients should take 2 perfectlyhealthy Acid Ease™ capsules in between each meal and 2 to 3 more directly before bedtime.  Once the malfunctioning LES has been corrected, acid reflux will subside and the supplements can be taken, only when they are needed, at bedtime.

As a nation we find it so simple to pop a pill to “cure” what ails us, but in this case the pill might be causing more harm than good.  And the “cure” is not a cure at all but a temporary solution that is merely prolonging the problem rather than fixing it for good.  You owe it to yourself to make intelligent and informed decisions about what you put into your body and how you address your health problems.  If you suffer from acid reflux, seek out a doctor who is willing to treat the root cause of the problem.  Decide on good health today!

Dr. Connealy is the medical director of South Coast Medical Center for New Medicine in Irvine, California. The center strives to look at the whole person and explore the effects and relationships among nutrition, psychological and social factors, environmental effects and personal attunement. Visit them online at http://www.scmedicalcenter.com.  For more information on the supplements mentioned, please visit http://www.perfectlyhealthy.net.

Healthy Lifestyle Tips

Healthy Lifestyle Tips 

  • Drink 8 oz of room temperature water with lemon first thing in morning to aid alkalinity,

and elimination.   

  • Drink at least 2-3 quarts of water a day for hydration and anti-aging.
  •  Use safe appropriate plastics and water bottles to avoid health risks from the bisphenol –A

   to avoid plasticizer chemicals called phthalates which are hormonal disrupters  .

  • Plastics considered safe with the number #1,#2, #4, #5
  • Eat within one hour of waking to stabilize blood sugar.
  • Eat protein with every meal (meats, fish, eggs, low fat or hard cheese and yogurt) for mental

   acuity and satiety.

  • Eat the majority of your carbohydrates in Non-starchy veggies (i.e.: salads, broccoli, spinach

   mushrooms, asparagus, tomatoes, cucumbers, all green and watery vegetables).

  • Eat only one starchy carb at a time with your meal if at all (i.e. potatoes, bread, pasta, corn,)

   preferably no more than ½ -1 cup or 1-2 slices of breads.

  • Eat no more than 2 fruits a day (i.e. 1 cup of any berries, melon cherries grapes, apple,

   oranges, bananas) to decrease sugar load and prevent weight gain and pre-diabetes.

  • Eat three meals a day preferably every 3-4 hours to maintain blood-sugar stability.
  • Include 8 gm of fiber rich foods with each meal (i.e. beans, bran cereal, oatmeal,

    beans, brown rice, kale, broccoli, raspberries and flaxseed) which slows food into

   the blood stream creating a sense of fullness and aids in promoting good intestinal heath.

  • Include a snack with protein when necessary (i.e. apple & unsalted nuts, cheese & cracker,

   Protein bar, cottage cheese &fruit, plain yogurt & fruit, hummas & celery)

  • Prepare foods by baking, broiling, or using chicken broth to avoid excess fats in your diet

   (use grapeseed, avocado, coconut oil for cooking and olive oil for salad dressings).

  • Use organic or locally grown fruits and veggies to reduce pesticide toxicity and increase

   a higher content of antioxidants and nutrients.

  • Occasional alcohol consumption 1-2 drinks with a meal omit starchy carbs

   (i.e. breads, pasta, rice).

  • Use stevia or zylitol as a sweeter it has less impact on your blood sugar to prevent diabetes.

 Things to Avoid

  •    Avoid plastic water bottles with the number #3, #6, #7 usually on the bottom of the bottle.  
  • Avoid skipping any meal especially breakfast (increases urge to eat sugar by raising cortisol).
  • Avoid snacking or drinking carb-laden foods (i.e. cookies, candy, chips, soda, diet drinks

   & foods) increases blood sugar spiking and weight gain.

  • Avoid hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated  oils (i.e. peanut, corn, palm kernel canola).
  • Avoid Aspartame, NutraSweet, Splenda and MSG a toxin to the brain, which induces

   cravings and brain fog.

  • Limit or avoid Micro-waving especially in plastic (increases free radicals lowers immunity).
  • Avoid: White flour, white/brown sugar, sodas-even diet sodas, processed foods,

         preservatives, artificial colors and flavors (increases acidity and leaches calcium).

Sample Meal Suggestions

Breakfast

  • Protein Smoothie-Protein powder, plain yogurt, frozen berries, water and flaxseed
  • Poached eggs with 1-2 slices of toast or fruit
  • 1 cup of old fashion oatmeal with nuts and scoop of protein powder
  • Plain Yogurt with fruit, nuts and a sprinkle of granola
  • Low fat cottage cheese with fruit and nuts
  • ½ -1 bagel and scramble eggs
  • Coffee and tea with stevia or zylitol

Lunch or Dinner Options

  • 2-4 Soft corn tortilla tacos with meat, guacamole salsa and unlimited salad (no beans or rice).
  • Taco salad with beans and meat (no tortilla or rice).
  • ½ turkey sandwich and salad or vegetable soup (no potato or bean soups) Men a whole sandwich cut the crusts off.
  • Salmon, salad, broccoli, and ½ cup of rice or potato
  • Fillet mignon salad with 1-2 glasses of wine or other
  • Chicken, salad and small amount of pasta with veggies no wine or other starchy carbs.
  • Chicken lettuce wraps, Chinese veggies and ½ -1 cup of rice or noodles.

 Snack Options

  • ½ turkey sandwich and veggies
  • Hummas with celery or cucumber
  • Cheese and crackers
  • Tuna and crackers
  • Fruit and cheese
  • Fruit with unsalted nuts
  • Nuts (i.e. almonds, walnuts, pecans)
  • Latte no carmel or syrups
  • Protein bar

Prevent Osteoporosis!

  •  Osteoporosis can strike at any age
  • Osteoporosis is a major public health threat for 44 million Americans (68 % are women).
  • In the United States today, 10 million individuals already have osteoporosis, and 34 million more have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for this disease.
  • One out of every two women and one in four men over 50 will have an osteoporosis-related fracture in his or her lifetime.
  • More than two million American men suffer from osteoporosis, and millions more are at risk. Each year, 80,000 men have a hip fracture, and one-third of these men die within a year.
  • Osteoporosis is responsible for more than 1.5 million fractures annually, including 300,000 hip fractures, approximately 700,000 vertebral fractures, 250,000 wrist fractures, and more than 300,000 fractures at other sites.
  • Bone mineral density (BMD) test estimates the true mass of bone.
  • BMD analysis is recommended for women between ages 50 and 65 with risk factors for osteoporosis and for all women over the age of 65. In addition, men and women taking certain medications or having certain diseases should discuss testing with their doctor.
  • By measuring BMD, it is possible to predict fracture risk in the same manner that measuring blood pressure can help predict the risk of stroke

 

A Healthy Lifestyle starts Each Morning!6 Great Ways to Cope with Stress

1.Put On Some Music

Music therapy has been shown to reduce stress and have a positive effect on health.

2.Stretch in the Shower

The hot water will loosen up your muscles, so it’s easier to move and stretch.

3.Eat a Balanced Breakfast

A healthy breakfast in the morning can balance your blood sugar levels and give you the sustenance you need to handle physical and mental stress. Be sure to have plenty of protein and fruit, not just caffeine and empty calories! If you don’t like breakfast, you can split it up into two smaller meals. Eat a hard boiled egg at home and an hour or two later take a break from work and snack on an apple and a handful of raw nuts like pecans or walnuts.

4.Drink Green Tea

Sipping a warm cup of tea is a soothing activity that will help you prepare for the day ahead and feel nurtured.

5.Write in Your Journal

Journaling has many health and stress management benefits, and can also lead to increased self-awareness. Writing once a day can help you feel focused, process negative emotions, and solve problems.

6.Morning Walk

Walking has many health and stress management benefits.

7.Yoga

For a healthy body and peaceful mind, few activities give as much “bang for your buck” as yoga.

 To your vibrant health,

Liliana Partida, CN

Center For New Medicine

949-680-1881

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