Customized Medicines

Customized Medicines
Dr. Sonja O'Bryan, Pharm.D., ABAAHP Board Certified Health Practitioner Diplomate-American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine: "Creative Medicines" for Hormones-Weight-Pain-Fatigue-Skin Diseases-Pediatrics-Autoimmune Disorders-Veterinary Needs. Using Complimentary, Integrative, Regenerative, Bio-Identical, and Lifestyle Medicine For Health and Healing.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

This Girl Is On Fire.....uh-e-o-oooooo!!

The number one symptom menopausal women complain of is HOT FLASHES. I doubt that's a big shocker to anyone reading this article. And just so you know, I've heard just about every statement imagineable from women who try to describe their FLARE-UPs to me in the office. I love hearing them and have collected some favorites throughout the years which I now look back on and smile about.


Flinging the covers off at night, fanning like a crazy person, running the A/C in 50 degree weather are all explanations talked about day-in and day-out around here. It's fun in the way that they describe the problem of hot flashes, but I promise you there is a sincere cry for help when they get to the point of seeing me to help uncover the problem. I remember a patient a few years ago that sat in the chair and dripped with sweat as I tried to interview her. It was sad to have to watch her suffer in that way but there was an even greater problem that the hot flashes had brought about. The affection of her spouse had dimished because of her constant and profuse sweating. She felt half-human at that point and really needed some answers.

So what happens when a "Hot Flash" strikes? (no pun intended.....I told you I've heard them all)
Vasomotor flushing is the technical term and happens when blood vessels in the skin of the head and neck open more widely than usual, allowing more blood to shift into that area. This creates the heat and redness that a woman feels during a "Hot Flash". The reasons for the onset of the hot flash can be many, but usually are the result of declining estrogens and rising levels of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). The real problem is that one never knows when they are going to happen. NEWS BULLETIN!!!..... Usually 'hot flashes' will occur right during something very important or when you are in front of A LOT of people. (Murphys Law right?)

What should you do if you are feeling Hot, Hot, Hot?

Hormone testing (saliva is my preference) helps to identify the degree to which things are out-of-whack and should always be used as a guide for care and treatment. Everyday, I work with M.D.'s, Nurse Practitioners, and PA's from all over the area and in other states who are more than welcome to call and discuss your care plan with me. Why? Because a patient should use only the hormones that are identified as deficient and not something that is convenient and packed with unnecessary components for their body. I suggest a full hormone panel before doing ANYthing in the world of hormones. In my patients, I require Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, and sometimes DHEA, and Cortisol levels to be tested. Hormone testing just gives a good picture of what's going on inside. The other important part of the process is a patient interview. This helps me to consider other health concerns and family history information.

Throughout the years I have been surprised a few times to see that the problem was not estrogen, but one of the other hormones (that I mentioned above) being out of balance. There have also been a few times that the problem was not hormonal, but a stress related condition for which I recommended herbal remedies and lifestyle changes. Honestly, it would have been terrible to put estrogen therapy on board with these patients when estrogen wasn't the problem at all. That's why I enjoy serving in the field of customized medicine. It's about each person and each need and it's why this field of medicine is growing almost exponentially throughout the country. "Cookie cutter" medicine is simply not the best approach to hormone problems anymore.

So if you're "all fired up" and feeling Hot Hot Hot, please don't hesitate to give me a call.
Maybe I can help cool things down a bit for you.

To your good health,
Dr Sonja

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Suzanne Somers: A Little Thyroid Goes A Long Way

Yesterday, I brought attention to a blog that I wrote in November of 2012 regarding thyroid related issues.   I'm getting ready to call a patient today who tested her iodine levels and they are quite low. This explains a LOT of the symptoms that she has been having.  It will likely be good news for her to hear because we found another reason in addition to her hormonal imbalances to address.  If you haven't had yourself checked, I certainly advise you do.  Our staff members can walk you through the process and get the necessary testing kits sent to your home.   Read this article and scroll to the end.  I hope it brings a smile.  ~DrSonja



When we’re younger, we worry about packing on the freshman 15 — but now we need to focus on avoiding the 40-something (and plus!) 15. Once you start nearing the big 4-0, your body may stop producing key hormones at the optimal levels, resulting in a sluggish metabolism that doesn’t burn calories the way it used to.
And one of the most common hormones to slip away as we age is among the most important — the thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), which is produced by the pituitary gland. Optimal thyroid function is necessary to regulate fat burning and help keep off the pounds, but a significant percentage of women find that their thyroid function slumps as they head into their 40s. Here’s how to tackle this head-on.
  • Watch for symptoms of hypothyroidism. A low thyroid level will result in sluggishness, fatigue, weight gain, dry skin, and stiff joints. If you develop these symptoms, it’s time to talk with a doctor.
  • Get your levels tested. Have your doctor check your thyroid levels to see if you’re producing enough hormones on your own to help maintain your weight. Get tested for T3 and T4 for the most accurate reading. You may also want to get your levels of other hormones, including cortisol and insulin, checked at the same time, as low or high numbers of these can be the culprits behind the drop in your thyroid levels.
  • Take your medicine. Your doctor may prescribe thyroid medication to help boost your levels. Ask for natural thyroid supplementation like Armour natural thyroid complex or Cytomel.
  • Get it just right. Regular blood tests ensure that your thyroid function remains optimal. While low thyroid levels point to fatigue, symptoms of elevated levels (or hyperthyroidism) include heart palpitations and inability to sleep. For this reason, it’s important you have open communication with your physician about your symptoms. It may take more than one visit to arrive at the right dosage; regular blood tests will reveal if the dose needs to be tweaked. Again, getting your hormones just right is the goal.
 
I often hear, "Hey, you remind me of Suzanne Somers!"  So, what do you think?  LOL!!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Natural Cholesterol Lowering Strategies

We carry the full line of these Cholesterol Busting Supplements

Dr. O'Keefe is a preventive cardiologist and his wife is a registered dietician.  Read what they have to say about getting your cholesterol numbers in check NATURALLY.  Our patients have had great success with this product line and keep coming back for more. Perhaps you need to get started?   To your good health, Dr. Sonja

Natural Cholesterol-Lowering Strategies
by James O'Keefe, MD, FACC

Many patients prefer to treat their high cholesterol without resorting to prescription drugs. Sometimes, by utilizing lifestyle and diet changes, we can avoid statin drugs altogether. More often, these non-prescription natural therapies can allow individuals to take lower doses of the statins and still maintain healthy cholesterol levels, which is ideal for people who are at high risk for future heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems.

But let’s be clear, statins are safe and effective drugs that save millions of lives each year. In fact, most cardiologists I know, including me, are on a statin such as Crestor, Lipitor, or simvastatin. We prescribe these drugs day in, day out, so we see firsthand how safe and effective they are for keeping your blood vessels, heart, and brain healthy.
 
Notwithstanding, we have discovered several strategies for lowering your bad cholesterol with natural, over-the-counter, therapies. Consider using these options to help keep your cholesterol levels in the ideal ranges, and discuss them with your doctor to make sure that they are right for you.
1. Red Yeast Rice. An over-the-counter option to help support cholesterol health is Red Yeast Rice, a natural product of a fungus (monascus purpureus) grown on rice. Studies show that the active compounds in Red Yeast Rice are called monacolins. However, it is frequently produced in Chinese facilities that would not meet FDA standards, and can contain the dangerous chemical toxin Citrinin, as well as unregulated quantities of a pharmaceutical-strength statin. The solution is to use, American grown and produced CardioTabs Red Yeast Rice, where each batch is tested to be free of any toxins, and to contain a standardized, safe and effective range of monacolins.
2. Fish oil. The omega-3 fats found in fish oil help to lower triglycerides, increase HDL (good cholesterol), and maintain cardiovascular health. To get these benefits, you will need to take a moderate to high dose of fish oil.  CardioTabs Omega-3 products are highly purified and concentrated oils that provide DHA—the most protective of the omega-3 fats.  Speak with your physician to find out how many capsules will be necessary to see substantial improvements in your triglyceride levels and to support your heart health.

3. Tea supplements. Theaflavins, catechins (EGCG), and polyphenols are antioxidant compounds that occur naturally in tea and have been shown to support cholesterol health. CardioTea, one daily, is a convenient and effective way to get the benefits of tea. Studies show that tea antioxidants like EGCG may help to support weight loss, especially when used as part of a healthy diet and exercise program. There is a minimal amount of caffeine in CardioTea, about the same as in a quarter cup of tea.

4.  Plant sterols (also called phytosterols).  This is a natural product that comes from plants such as nuts, beans, and vegetable oils. Plant sterols help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels by reducing the amount of cholesterol you absorb from your food. Plant sterols have been used for almost two decades now and are the most extensively tested over-the-counter therapy for lowering cholesterol. Four capsules per day of CardioSterol, either all at once or two caps twice daily provide 2 grams of phytosterol esters. "Foods containing at least 0.65 gram per vegetable oil sterol esters, easten twice a day with meals for a daily total intake of at least 1.3 grams, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease." can lower your bad cholesterol about 10 to 12 percent. Plant sterols have virtually no side effects, and although you can get them in the form of margarines, you will have to consume about two tablespoons of the spread and a lot of calories to get the full cholesterol-lowering dose of 1.3 to 2 grams of phytosterols. That is why we recommend you get the plant sterols from a diet high in plants and CardioSterol capsules.

5. Vitamin D. This is really a hormone more than a vitamin, because it is made in one organ and profoundly affects cells throughout the body. The first symptom of vitamin D deficiency is aches and pains in the muscles, joints, and bones. Decreased vitamin D levels can cause an increase in parathyroid hormone which can lead to increased inflammatory levels. Chronic inflammation can predispose diabetes, cardiovascular disease and stroke, which is why maintaining vitamin D levels is essential.  Ask your doctor to check your vitamin D level—most Americans have abnormally low levels of this hormone that is crucially important to your long-term health and well-being.

6.  Soluble fiber. This type of fiber dissolves in water into a gel that helps to prevent cholesterol absorption from the food you eat. Soluble fiber is present in many plant foods including broccoli, apples, oatmeal, carrots, plums, prunes, pears, citrus fruits (oranges, grapefruit, and lemons, etc.), beans, and nuts. Psyllium, the plant that is used in most fiber supplements including Metamucil, Fiber One, and Citrucel, contain soluble fiber which is recognized by the FDA to help lower cholesterol. Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol that includes 7 grams of soluble fiber from sources like psyllium husk may reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol.
7. Niacin. This is a B vitamin, that when used in mega-doses, may help maintain cholesterol levels. This was among the very first agents used for cholesterol support and is still a valuable tool today in certain individuals. This is not an easy drug to take, as it often causes flushing (temporarily making you look and feel as though you have sunburn on your face and neck). High-dose niacin can also raise sugar levels, and predispose to upset stomach and gout; so you want to be in touch with your health care provider when taking niacin.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Sitting Is The New Smoking- Are You A Serial Sitter?

Are you an oversitter? A University of Sydney study found that adults who sat 11 or more hours a day had a 40% increased risk of dying in the next three years compared with those who sat for fewer than four hours a day.

Sitting at work or at home for hours at a time could be cutting years off your life, doctors say.
“The chair is out to kill us,” James Levine, an endocrinologist at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine, told the Los Angeles Times.

And it’s not just trouble for our tushes. Keeping your cheeks planted poisons the rest of the body as well, said Dr. Anup Kanodia of Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. “Sitting is the new smoking,” the doctor declared. The doctors weighed in after researchers in Australia discovered that serial sitting slows the metabolism and increases the risk of a heart attack and stroke.

Slugs who roost on their rumps at least 11 hours a day increased their death risk by 40%, they found.
“The average adult sits for 90% of their leisure time, so it seems there is some room for improvement,” said Dr. Hidde van der Ploeg of the University of Sydney’s School of Public Health. Sitting also suppresses the production of a molecule called lipoprotein lipase, which would otherwise metabolize fats and sugars, the researchers found.
*Translation: The more you sit, the fatter your backside gets.

So what's worse on longevity, sitting or smoking?

"Sitting is the new smoking," says Anup Kanodia, a physician and researcher at the Center for Personalized Health Care at Ohio State University's Wexner Medical Center. As evidence, he cites an Australian study published in October 2012 in the British Journal of Sports Medicine that compared the two pastimes. Every hour of TV that people watch, presumably while sitting, cuts about 22 minutes from their life span, the study's authors calculated. By contrast, it's estimated that smokers shorten their lives by about 11 minutes per cigarette.

LONG BEACH, California — At the TED conference Tuesday, after Michigan’s governor lamented mass layoffs and before Bono praised poverty eradication progress, business writer Nilofer Merchant raised her own crucial issue: the quiet crisis of sore butts.
We’re sitting around too much at the office and particularly in meetings, says Merchant, a corporate director and former Autodesk executive. In classic TED fashion, Merchant found time in her short talk for a generous helping of statistics: People spend 9.3 hours per day on their derrieres, eclipsing even the 7.7 hours they spend sleeping. Their sedentary lifestyles contribute 10 percent of the risk of breast and colon cancer, 6 percent of the risk of heart disease, and 7 percent of the risk of type 2 diabetes.
The (ahem) bottom line is that sitting is a (usually) silent killer.

“Sitting is so incredibly prevalent we don’t even question it. It doesn’t even occur to us that it’s not OK.”
“Sitting is so incredibly prevalent that we don’t even question how much we’re doing it ,” Merchant told the TED audience. “And because everyone else is doing it, it doesn’t even occur to us that it’s not OK.”

“In that way, sitting has become the smoking of our generation.”

When it comes to finding a solution, Merchant isn’t farting around. She swears by the practice of holding “walk and talk” meetings and has been methodically switching her own business discussions out of fluorescent-lit conference rooms and caf├ęs and into long walks, an idea that came to her when a colleague asked her to talk business while the colleague walked a dog. Merchant clocks 20-30 miles of walks per week and has held hundreds of strolling meetings.

“This changed my life,” she said in her talk. “You’ll be surprised at how fresh air drives fresh thinking.”
It’s no wonder Merchant’s talk went over as well as it did; she’s tapped into a hot topic in technology workplaces and other American offices. Responding to medical concerns about sitting, office equipment makers have created a dazzling variety of standing desks, which have in turn been embraced with particular enthusiasm by hackers and DIY builders.

The old idea of the “walk and talk” meeting, meanwhile, has gained new currency amid recent reports that Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is fond of the practice, as was Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Twitter co-creator Jack Dorsey.

Of course, if the walk-and-talk meeting and standing desk are the carrots of butt liberation, guilt-inducing admonitions like Merchant’s are the stick. And if she can sell her message to an auditorium full of people who paid several thousand dollars each to sit on their tushes morning to night taking in speeches for an entire week, then she can probably convince anyone.

I enjoyed pulling these resources together to get this in front of you.  (~Just articles on this topic in a one-stop blog). Daily, I network with a group of professionals from across the U.S. and this was brought to my attention as we bantered back and forth on anti-aging topics, insights, and so on.  It really impacted me and I thought about all of you.  (And by the way, I'm standing up as I write this to followers.  I hope that as you're reading this, you too will consider the time you have now been sitting in front of your computer, TV, gaming system, etc.  I've never been one to sit still for very long (no comments please from those who really know me well) and feel it has a huge impact on my personal weight management. I've never been able to help a weight loss patient that wasn't willing to increase their activity level.  Perhaps physicians and practitioners should simply prescribe Rx: Movement.  Seems in order after reading this blog.  So, will you be sitting around watching TV tonight?  I think NOT!! 

To your good health,
Dr. Sonja





Thursday, June 6, 2013

Young Women & PCOS: The Problem To Deal With Sooner, Rather Than Later

I just did a consultation with a 53 year old woman yesterday who is certain that she had PCOS with a long history of female issues and eventually a hysterectomy, but "back then" she stated, they just didn't know it. (It always makes me sad to hear this because she struggled with infertility and never had children along with all of the other painful details of her medical history.)

Last week I consulted with a 16 year old and her mother who had checked out a book at the library on PCOS and became suspicious that this was the problem that she was experiencing each month with horrible menstrual cycles and pain. We had her test her hormone levels and she did have indicators that pointed to this disease. The next stop will be a visit to her doctor for an ultrasound and other tests. Thankfully she is young and if this is the problem, then interventional medicine can help her. Yeah!!

Yesterday, PCOS wasn't mentioned, but a 26 year old woman was referred to see if I could prescribe a supplement to bring her Testosterone down. This can be a sign of PCOS and I encouraged other testing. The supplement she will take is designed to help young women like this get back to a regular menstrual cycle and to prevent the unwanted symptoms that can go along with having a high Testosterone value.

We do know about the implications of PCOS "these days". Read on mothers, daughters, granddaughters, sisters, grandmothers..... you might just help someone you care about.


This is a SHOUT out to girls and young women who may be dealing with hidden practices and secrets related to polycystic ovaries. What do you mean(?), you might be asking. Did you know that it is not uncommon for a woman with this disease to have to shave? Did you know that they often struggle with depression? Did you know that they skip menstrual cycles of just don't have them at all? Did you know that infertility is a huge problem for these patients? Did you know that PCOS is becoming more prevalent?

Let me just give you a running list of some of the symptoms of PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome).

Infrequent menstrual periods, no menstrual periods, irregular bleeding, infertility because of no ovulation, increased hair growth on the face, chest, stomach, back, thumbs, or toes-a condition called hirsutism. Here's some more: ovarian cysts, acne, oily skin, dandruff, weight gain or obesity (around the waist), insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, male-pattern baldness or thinning hair, patches of thickened or dark brown skin on the neck, arms, breasts, or thighs, skin tags in the armpits or neck area, anxiety or depression due to appearance or infertility, sleep apnea and excessive snoring. Hidden struggles as you see.... Who wants anyone to notice these things? It makes me sad to see young women dealing with this syndrome.

There is no single test to determine if a woman has PCOS. A comprehensive medical history will usually be taken along with a physical exam by the doctor. I totally recommend that a person have a hormone panel done because there are some key identifiers and values that are helpful in determining if this is the problem. I remember a 23 year old female that came to my office about 3 years ago. She was referred by a friend who suggested she come in an get tested. Thankfully she did. After reading the lab results, I was able to refer her on to a physician who did more testing and started her on a prescription regimen that gave her quality of life again. Her depression improved, she lost weight, the hair growth lessened on her face, she just looked brighter overall. Yeah!!

There are effective treatments for PCOS. (some prescription, some herbal, some lifestyle modification) If you know of a woman who may be dealing with these troublesome symptoms, please have her give my office a call. I would love to talk with them. I can walk them through the testing process, work with their personal physician, and get them on the road to better health. Time is critical in treating this syndrome. Call right away!

To your good health,
Dr. Sonja

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Male Menopause aka Andropause


 ANDROPAUSE

Andropause is the gradual decline of the production of androgens, the male sex hormones testosterone and DHEA. In women going through menopause, estrogen and progesterone levels fall dramatically over the course of a few years. Andropause is a much slower decline in hormone levels that typically begins around age 40 and continues for several decades. A recent study by the WHO (World Health Organization), which tested men’s testosterone levels at age 25 and then at age 70, found that these men’s testosterone levels decreased by 90%.


So, you're probably seeing a lot of commercials about "Low T"......  Here's some need-to-know info.
 
 
 TESTOSTERONE
~Made primarily by the testes
~Controls development and maintenance of sex characteristics in males
~Governs sperm production
~Maintains muscle mass and strength
~Keeps fat tissue levels low
~Influences neurons in the brain that are involved with aggression and libido
 ~Females produce a small amount
 
 
 
SYMPTOMS OF ANDROPAUSE
BONE LOSS, BACK PAIN
DECREASED MUSCLE STRENGTH
DECREASE ENDURANCE
DECREASE URINE FLOW
DEPRESSION, IRRITABILITY, MOODINESS
DIFFICULTY CONCENTRATING, INSOMNIA
WEIGHT GAIN AROUND THE WAIST
ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION
HIGH CHOLESTEROL
HOT FLASHES
LOW LIBIDO
INCREASED RISK FOR CARDIOVASCULAR EVENTS
INCREASED RISK FOR BREAST CANCER
 


 DHEA

~Made primarily by the adrenal glands

~Precursor hormone-made into other sex hormones

~Most abundant hormone in the body
 
~Often men need both Testosterone and DHEA to feel better and get back to an active life.

 

Other Hormones

ESTROGENS

Men make a small amount of estrogen, too. During andropause, an additional problem occurs as the testosterone level declines—Estrogen Dominance. Since hormones act to balance one another, when androgen levels are low, estrogen becomes the dominant hormone.  This can result in manoobies.  (man boobs) 

 

PROGESTERONE

Some men also need progesterone therapy. Progesterone is another sex hormone that has receptors on every cell in the body. It is responsible for balancing estrogen levels (of which men make a small amount). It also reduces the risk for prostate cancer by decreasing the conversion of testosterone to DHT (dihydrotestosterone), a potent derivative that has been linked to a high risk of prostate cancer.

 

ADRENAL HORMONE IMBALANCE

The adrenal glands secrete hormones that help the body deal with stress. If exposed to highly stressful situations for an extended period of time, the adrenal glands may not be able to mount an effective stress response. This can cause an abnormally low level of cortisol and DHEA.    This can be evaluated and treated.  Often adrenal hormones are included in customized therapies for our male patients.

 

THYROID HORMONE IMBALANCE

Thyroid hormones act to control metabolism, protein synthesis, and the proper development of all the cells in the body. For this reason, hyperthyroidism (high levels of thyroid hormone) and hypothyroidism (low levels of thyroid hormone) affect every cell in the body. Imbalances in the thyroid hormones cause imbalances in other hormones.

Rx: Take By Mouth Daily. Eating Right For Your Health Condition



Apples
Protects your heart
Prevents constipation
Blocks diarrhea
Improves lung capacity
Cushions joints
Apricots
Combats cancer
Controls blood pressure
Saves your eyesight
Shields against
Alzheimer's
Slows aging process
Artichokes
Aids digestion
Lowers cholesterol
Protects your heart
Stabilizes blood sugar
Guards against liver
disease
Avocados
Battles diabetes
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Controls blood pressure
Smoothes skin
Bananas
Protects your heart
Quiets a cough
Strengthens bones
Controls blood pressure
Blocks diarrhea
Beans
Prevents constipation
Helps hemorrhoids
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Stabilizes blood sugar
Beets
Controls blood pressure
Combats cancer
Strengthens bones
Protects your heart
Aids weight loss
Blueberries
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Stabilizes blood sugar
Boosts memory
Prevents constipation
Broccoli
Strengthens bones
Saves eyesight
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Cabbage
Combats cancer
Prevents constipation
Promotes weight loss
Protects your heart
Helps hemorrhoids
Cantaloupe
Saves eyesight
Controls blood pressure
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Supports immune system
Carrots
Saves eyesight
Protects your heart
Prevents constipation
Combats cancer
Promotes weight loss
Cauliflower
Protects against Prostate
Cancer
Combats Breast Cancer
Strengthens bones
Banishes bruises
Guards against heart
disease
Cherries
Protects your heart
Combats Cancer
Ends insomnia
Slows aging process
Shields against
Alzheimer's
Chestnuts
Promotes weight loss
Protects your heart
Lowers cholesterol
Combats Cancer
Controls blood pressure
Chili peppers
Aids digestion
Soothes sore throat
Clears sinuses
Combats Cancer
Boosts immune system
Figs
Promotes weight loss
Helps stops strokes
Lowers cholesterol
Combats Cancer
Controls blood pressure
Fish
Protects your heart
Boosts memory
Protects your heart
Combats Cancer
Supports immune system
Flax
Aids digestion
Battles diabetes
Protects your heart
Improves mental health
Boosts immune system
Garlic
Lowers cholesterol
Controls blood pressure
Combats cancer
Kills bacteria
Fights fungus
Grapefruit
Protects against heart
attacks
Promotes Weight loss
Helps stops strokes
Combats Prostate Cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Grapes
Saves eyesight
Conquers kidney stones
Combats cancer
Enhances blood flow
Protects your heart
Green tea
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Helps stops strokes
Promotes Weight loss
Kills bacteria
Honey
Heals wounds
Aids digestion
Guards against ulcers
Increases energy
Fights allergies
Lemons
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Smoothes skin
Stops scurvy
Limes
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Controls blood pressure
Smoothes skin
Stops scurvy
Mangoes
Combats cancer
Boosts memory
Regulates thyroid
Aids digestion
Shields against
Alzheimer's
Mushrooms
Controls blood pressure
Lowers cholesterol
Kills bacteria
Combats cancer
Strengthens bones
Oats
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Battles diabetes
Prevents constipation
Smoothes skin
Olive oil
Protects your heart
Promotes Weight loss
Combats cancer
Battles diabetes
Smoothes skin
Onions
Reduce risk of heart
attack
Combats cancer
Kills bacteria
Lowers cholesterol
Fights fungus
Oranges
Supports immune systems
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Straightens respiration
Peaches
Prevents constipation
Combats cancer
Helps stops strokes
Aids digestion
Helps hemorrhoids
Peanuts
Protects against heart
disease
Promotes Weight loss
Combats Prostate Cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Aggravates
Diverticulitis
Pineapple
Strengthens bones
Relieves colds
Aids digestion
Dissolves warts
Blocks diarrhea
Prunes
Slows aging process
Prevents constipation
Boosts memory
Lowers cholesterol
Protects against heart
disease
Rice
Protects your heart
Battles diabetes
Conquers kidney stones
Combats cancer
Helps stops strokes
Strawberries
Combats cancer
Protects your heart
Boosts memory
Calms stress
Sweet potatoes
Saves your eyesight
Lifts mood
Combats cancer
Strengthens bones
Tomatoes
Protects prostate
Combats cancer
Lowers cholesterol
Protects your heart
Walnuts
Lowers cholesterol
Combats cancer
Boosts memory
Lifts mood
Protects against heart
disease
Water
Promotes Weight loss
Combats cancer
Conquers kidney stones
Smoothes skin
Watermelon
Protects prostate
Promotes Weight loss
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Controls blood pressure
Wheat germ
Combats Colon Cancer
Prevents constipation
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Improves digestion
Wheat bran
Combats Colon Cancer
Prevents constipation
Lowers cholesterol
Helps stops strokes
Improves digestion
Yogurt
Guards against ulcers
Strengthens bones
Lowers cholesterol
Supports immune systems
Aids digestion

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The HUGE Impact of Weight Management-Fighting the Battle of the Bulge

I've been perusing through some textbooks this morning and wanted to share information that I put together from multiple scientific articles on the topic of weight and longevity.  I'm getting ready to bring in a line of pharmaceutical grade supplements that will help catalyze weight loss for those trying to control their growing waist lines.  I think it best to just give you some clear easy-to-read statistics about where we were, where we are, and where we are going if our culture does not change it's habits and history.  A person could literally spend days putting something like this together, but the goal is to give you some quick concrete evidence to show you that we are headed down a slippery slope of disease management if things don't change for the better.  Literally!



So, here goes.....

~The U.S. has seen it's obesity rate reach epidemic levels as about 2/3 of American adults are now considered overweight or obese.

~All states have at least 15% of their population considered to be obese. (BMI>30)

~One Baylor University study found that by the year 2030, all 50 states will be at 25%.  1 in 4 people obese??? That's scary!

~A persons risk of developing Type II diabetes increases by 12 times if they are extremely obese.

~An even wider problem than just having diabetes is Metabolic Syndrome (3 or more of the following factors: high blood pressure, high blood glucose, high plasma triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, and high waist circumference) It is now estimated that 70 million (yes...million) Americans are affected by Metabolic Syndrome which carries an increased risk of premature aging, disability, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke, infection, sleep disorders, etc.

~It is estimated that the sicker 50% of the population has required 97% of total healthcare expenditures.

~Nutritional pollution has resulted in marketplace portions being 2-8 times larger than standard serving sizes. 


~A study conducted at Penn State U found that fast food locations from the same chain sold food portions that were 25% larger in Philadelphia as compared to Paris, France. 

~The same study indicated that the time spent eating was 22.2 minutes in Paris vs. 14.4 min in Philly.

~The targeted number of steps to take in a day was widely publicized to be 10,000 steps  for good health.  A study of 1,000 people showed American adults take an average of 6,804 which is well below the active cut-off.

~Even among those Americans who are able to lose weight, 85% of them gain it ALL back within 2 years.
~Nearly 400 2nd and 3rd grade students were assessed to determine the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (formerly called syndrome X) by screening central obesity, elevated TG's, low HDL, elevated blood pressure, and elevated blood sugar.  Half of the children had no problems, and 45% had 1-2 components already with elevated blood pressure being the most common component.

~In 2004 a survey was conducted of 3,500 respondents asking "What did I order at the restaurant today? as a part of a year-long diary of eating habits.  The top 10 foods for men: hamburger, french fries, pizza, breakfast sandwich, side salad, eggs, doughnuts, hash browns, Chinese food, main salad.  For women: French fries, hamburger, pizza, side salad, chicken sandwich, breakfast sandwich, main salad, chinese food, chicken strips, and rice.

~A 15 year long study into the effects of eating fast food showed that eating fast food just 2 times weekly was enough to cause a 10 pound weight gain. 

~In Beijing, 50% of the population is now overweight because they have adopted a much more Western diet. 

~58 million U.S. citizens are overweight, 40 million are obese, and 3 million are morbidly obese. 

~A staggering 8 out of 10 Americans over the age of 25 are obese.

~25% of Americans don't get off the couch-they are completely sedentary.

~There has been a 76% increase in Type II diabetes incidence since 1990 in the 30-40 year old age group.

~80% of Type II diabetes is related to obesity, 70% to heart disease, 42% to cancers, and 30% to gallbladder surgery.

~It has been estimated that we make 200 food related decisions a day.  When asked, most people will respond that we make 30.  Food is always on the brain, so it's important that we strategize and control our behaviors...200 times a day..... no pressure right?

We need to take notice of this, but even more importantly, we need to act upon this epidemic.  Here are some powerful weapons against the battle of the bulge.
1) A decrease in caloric intake.  Calorie Restriction is the #1 Anti-Aging strategy EVER known.  Do your homework and you'll find it's true.  We are eating more than we need to exist on.  Once on the lips, forever on the hips, heart, liver, kidneys, brain, etc.  That's the reality.
2) Increase caloric expenditure.  All of you couch potato's, get up off that thing!!
3) Make a healthier selection of food.  If you are the  food gatekeeper of the house, choose well for your family.
4) Adopt an overall orientation towards good health.  Start NOW!
5) Weight loss is a realistic goal for almost all patients.  What changes can you make based on the data and statistics shared above?

6) Achieve 10,000 steps a day, exercise 30 minutes 5 days a week, and grab a friend along the way.
7) Drop the pop and the sugary drinks.  It's empty calories that you do not need.
8) Choose low Glycemic Index foods and exercise PORTION CONTROL.
9) Start a good nutraceutical regimen to give your body core nutrition so that you won't crave the bad foods so much.  Our nurse can give you a body composition assessment and I can prescribe a vitamin and supplement regimen to meet your health and medical needs. 
10)  Get your hormones checked and balanced.  Hey you keep your car tires checked and balanced, right?  Why not do the same with your hormones? Hormones can affect weight!!  I've seen patients lose several pounds with ease after establishing normal balance to their hormone levels. Please read my other blogs about hormone balance, stress control, and weight management.

Hey blog friends, that is all for today.  I hope this compels you to live better so that you can live longer.  It's a BIG deal to keep these numbers in check.   We must all fight the battle of the bulge.  It's worth it!

....off to some sunshine and a healthy lunch. :)

To your good health,
Dr. Sonja

Monday, June 3, 2013

10 Tips To Help You Live To Be 100

By Dr. Lissa Rankin
May 30, 2013 3:00 PM EDT (anti-aging medicine)

Stamatis Moraitis was living in the United States, when he was diagnosed with lung cancer and told he had only nine months to live. He considered taking his doctor’s advice – aggressive chemotherapy that might prolong his life, but wouldn’t cure him. But upon reflection, he decided to decline it, choosing instead to return to Ikaria, the Greek island where he grew up, where he could be buried with his ancestors in a graveyard overlooking the Aegean Sea.

He and his wife moved into a small house on a vineyard with his elderly parents, where he expected he would die soon. While he prepared to die, he started going to his old church. He reconnected with friends over a bottle or two of wine. He even planted vegetables in a garden, not expecting he’d be around to harvest them. He basked in sunshine, savored the salty air, and relished in his love for this wife.

Six months passed, and not only did Stamatis not die, he was actually feeling better than ever. He started working in the vineyard during the day, making himself useful, and in the evenings, he’d play dominos with friends.

45 years later, Stamatis is now 98 years old. At one point, 25 years after his diagnosis, Stamatis went back to the United States to ask his doctors what had happened. Apparently, his doctors were all dead.

Stamatis’s story is just one of many like the case studies of spontaneous remission I share in my New York Times bestselling book Mind Over Medicine. But are cases like this just flukes? Or are there proactive steps we can take to recover from illness and live to be 100?

The New York Times article "The Island Where People Forget To Die" describes the Ikarians, a population of Greeks like Stamatis who frequently live to be over a hundred years old. What can we learn from the people of Ikaria about how to live long, happy, productive lives?

Here are some of the longevity-inducing factors researchers ferreted out from studying this population of centenarians:

1. Sleep in and take naps.

A 2008 study conducted by the University of Athens Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health studied more than 23,000 Greeks and found that occasional napping was associated with a 12% reduction in the risk of coronary heart disease. But regular napping — at least three days weekly — was associated with a 37% reduction. Zzzz’s, anyone?

2. Stop worrying about being late.

Arrive whenever you get there – and let others do the same. Worrying about when you arrive triggers “fight or flight” stress responses that can reduce your life expectancy.

3. Grow a garden, nurture it, and eat from it.

Eat plants, avoid animal products, consume lots of olive oil, avoid processed foods, and drink wine in the company of good friends. Need inspiration and recipes? Read Kris Carr’s Crazy Sexy Kitchen.

4. Never give up your sense of purpose.

Finding and fulfilling your calling throughout your lifetime can extend your life. In fact, studies have linked early retirement to reduced life expectancy. In Okinawa, another community where many people live to be older than 100, people embrace the notion of ikigai — “the reason for which you wake up in the morning. ”

It gets centenarians out of bed and off the sofa so they can make a difference in the community. The Nicoyans in Costa Rica use the term plan de vida to describe a lifelong sense of purpose. Dr. Robert Butler, the first director of the National Institute on Aging, says that being able to define your life meaning adds to your life expectancy.

5. Get it on.

A study of Ikarian men between 65 and 100 found that 80% of them claimed to have sex regularly, and a quarter of that self-reported group said they were doing so with “good duration” and “achievement.” Go dudes! For more proof that sex isn’t just fun, it’s good for your health, read this.

6. Take a placebo at least once per day.

Ikarians take a spoonful of honey every morning. They believe it is their “medicine” and use it for both prevention and treatment of illness and injury. They also regularly consume a homemade tea made of a special blend of herbs they believe extends their lives.

While there may be some health benefit the Ikarians enjoy from the honey and herbs themselves, chances are good that the stress-relieving, relaxation-inducing effects of the positive belief they associate with the honey and tea are more potent medicine than the honey and tea themselves. For more proof that placebos really can heal your body, read this.

7. Walk up 20 hills a day.

To get around the island, Ikarians walk. And it’s hilly where they live. Exercise isn’t something they do at the gym. It’s an enjoyable, built in part of their lifestyle.

8. Cultivate a sense of belonging.

As I wrote in this blog post, finding your tribe, alleviating loneliness, and feeling like part of a community can cut your risk of heart disease in half and extend your life up to 10 years. Be part of a community where you fit in. Ikarians live in multigenerational homes and avoid spending too much time alone. And researchers have proven that being part of a nurturing community is more important to good health than quitting smoking or starting to exercise.

9. Go to the church, temple, or mosque.

Studies show that gathering as part of a spiritual community can extend your life up to 14 years.

10. Surround yourself with people who follow steps 1-9.

The more you surround yourself with people engaged in whole health-inducing behaviors, the more it becomes part of your culture. If, however, you surround yourself with beer-guzzling, obese couch potato loners, it’s easier to become one yourself. When you surround yourself with healthy, inspiring people, you’re way more likely to live to be 100.