AN ARTICLE FROM DR MERCOLA, DO... HE COULD NOT HAVE SAID IT BETTER:
Chronic pain is an exceedingly common condition impacting an estimated 76.5 million Americans, one-third of whom describe their pain as severe and "disabling".i
Among them, many suffer from neck pain, which is the third most common type of pain according to the American Pain Foundation.
It is estimated that 70 percent of people will experience neck pain at some point in their lives but research into effective treatments is surprisingly limited.ii
If you visit a conventional physician for pain, there's a very good chance you'll leave with a prescription for a medication,as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), acetaminophen (Tylenol) and even opioids (OxyContin, Vicodin, etc.) are the go-to treatment for pain in the modern medical world.
However, there are better options than drugs for neck pain, not only in terms of pain relief, but also in helping to treat the underlying cause of the pain so that healing can truly occur.
New Study Shows Exercises and Chiropractic Care Beat Drugs for Neck PainAccording to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine and funded by the National Institutes of Health, medication is not the best option for treating neck pain.
After following 272 neck-pain patients for 12 weeks, those who used a chiropractor or exercise were more than twice as likely to be pain free compared to those who took medication.
"For participants with acute and subacute neck pain, SMT [spinal manipulation therapy] was more effective than medication in both the short and long term. However, a few instructional sessions of HEA [home exercise with advice] resulted in similar outcomes at most time points."
Why Exercise is Essential if You Have Neck PainBecause exercise often leads to improved posture, range of motion and functionality of your body, it can help treat the underlying source of your pain as well as help prevent chronic neck pain from developing in the first place. Exercise helps prevent and relieve pain through a number of mechanisms including strengthening key supportive muscles and restoring flexibility.
Not surprisingly, repetitive strain injuries have become increasingly common as so many people spend most of their work days sitting in front of computers. Computer work is associated with neck pain specifically originating from the trapezius muscle, also referred to as trapezius myalgia, and many types of neck pain can be traced back to poor posture at work or during your commute.
It's a vicious cycle as poor sitting posture leads to neck pain and once neck pain develops, it can make your posture even worse. For instance, one study showed people with chronic neck pain demonstrate a reduced ability to maintain an upright posture when distracted.iii
The same study further revealed, however, that after following a specific exercise program, people with neck pain had an improved ability to maintain a neutral cervical posture during prolonged sitting, which suggests it may help break the poor posture/neck pain cycle. Other research has similarly shown that exercise is incredibly beneficial for treating neck pain including:
As a general rule of thumb, increase the weight as soon as you can comfortably execute all three sets. As a guideline, the participants in the study roughly doubled the weight used in 10 weeks. After approximately four weeks, you can reduce the number of repetitions of the last sets in order to increase the weight.
The Benefits of Chiropractic Care and Other Alternative Treatments for Neck PainSeeing a qualified chiropractor is another wise option if you suffer from chronic pain. I am an avid believer in the chiropractic philosophy, which places a strong emphasis on your body's innate healing wisdom and far less reliance on Band-Aids like drugs and surgery. Chiropractic, Osteopathic, and Naturopathic physicians receive extensive training in the management of musculoskeletal disorders during their course of graduate healthcare training, which typically lasts from 4-6 years.
Due to their comprehensive training in musculoskeletal management, numerous sources of evidence have shown that chiropractic management is much safer and often more effective than allopathic medical treatments, particularly for back and neck pain. In addition, researchers have also found that chiropractic adjustments affect our bodies on a deep cellular level.
What that means is that chiropractic care may affect the basic physiological processes that influence oxidative stress and DNA repair, so in addition to addressing any immediate spinal misalignment that might cause pain, it can also address deeper dysfunction in your body.
As many of you know I am an osteopathic physician. DOs, like chiropractors, also receive extensive additional training in spinal adjustments and may also be a good option for you. However, in my experience, only a small percentage of DOs are skilled in this area as they have chosen a more conventional allopathic model. So if you see a DO for this make sure they provide this service.
Overall, the important point to remember is that there are many other options for treating chronic pain than drugs. For instance, therapeutic massage has been found to offer clinically significant improvement in function and symptoms for those with neck pain,vii while a variety of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments (including acupuncture, massage, spinal manipulation, and mobilization) were deemed to be significantly more efficacious than no treatment, placebo, physical therapy, or usual care in reducing pain immediately or at short-term after treatment for those with neck or low-back pain.viii
So you have options when it comes to dealing with your pain, and there is good reason to explore them before you opt for medicated relief. Additionally, many massage and physical therapists can provide effective alternatives.
Pain Medications are Risky at BestMillions of Americans depend on anti-inflammatory drugs to relieve pain, but the drugs are among the most dangerous on the market. Aside from significantly increasing your heart risks (such as a two to fourfold increase in the risk of heart attacks, stroke or cardiovascular death), NSAIDs are linked to serious gastrointestinal risks like bleeding of the digestive tract, increased blood pressure and kidney problems. Remember, this applies not only to prescription medications like Celebrex but also to over-the-counter drugs like aspirin, Advil and Motrin.
It's very difficult to find a drug-based method of pain relief that is not saddled with severe side effects. The FDA has even recently limited the amount of acetaminophen allowed in prescription products and added a boxed warning due to liver toxicity concerns. Acetaminophen is actually the leading cause of acute liver failure in the United States.
As for the opioid painkillers like OxyContin, they are among the most commonly abused prescription drugs and are a leading contributor to the rising rates of fatal prescription drug overdoses. Many become addicted after using them to treat conditions like back or neck pain.
But no matter what type of painkiller you choose, the bottom line to remember is that they do not come without risks! Unfortunately, if you visit your conventional physician with chronic pain, a long-term treatment plan will typically include a drug-combination approach, using anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-seizure medications, muscle relaxants and possibly other types of pain medication as well. In other words, the answer for pain relief is drugs, drugs and more drugs -- each one raising your risk of suffering potentially lethal side effects. Is there a better way?
More Natural Solutions for Neck (and Other Types of) PainIn the case of neck pain, the underlying cause is often related to body mechanics, meaning your posture or muscle balance is off kilter. Addressing your posture (or other factors that may be contributing to the strain, such as sleeping in an awkward position) and treating the condition with exercises is often effective at relieving the pain and addressing the underlying cause. If you have chronic pain of any kind, please understand that there are many safe and effective alternatives to prescription and over-the-counter painkillers, though they may require some patience.
Among the best are:
What is Cox Flexion Distraction?
Using flexion distraction, Dr. Kate will gently and carefully adjust your spine so that it can heal naturally. Created with the ideas of both chiropractic and osteopathy, this method offers relief quickly from lower back and leg pain and may help you avoid surgery. Most patients report that it actually feels quite good, and that relief is pretty immediate as far as the pain they were experiencing before the treatment. If patient's do not improve at least 50% in 4 weeks Dr Kate will refer the patient to see a specialist for a potential steroid shot, or surgery. The way you know you are getting better is that the pain begins to become more localized in just your back, and not down your leg. The worst level of pain is when pain is only felt in the leg and not the back. The next worst level is low back and leg pain, and the least serious pain is when the pain is only in the low back. Things that are helped are disc degeneration, disc herniation's, spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis of the spine, and scoliosis.
What Cox Flexion Distraction Can Do for You
The objective of this therapy is to expand the space between the bones in your spine by applying mild stretching or traction of the lower back. The moving parts of the table allow Dr Kate to separate the different areas of the spine, and this allows for an increase of disc space between the bones in your back. This reestablishes precise alignment of your vertebrae and increases range of motion that you may have previously lost.
What’s great about this technique is that it uses gravity as well as mild manipulation to move your spine through a normal range of motion. There are no quick thrusts or extreme pressure, and you will feel instant relief from this treatment. In fact, this method has been recognized to decrease pressure within the discs of the spine, expand the spinal canal, improve posture, diminish pressure on spinal nerves, promote better circulation and advance communication between the nerves of the spine. This results in less pain for you as well as a higher level of overall wellness.
Dr Kate has helped patients with bowel constipation that is caused by spinal stenosis, eliminated leg and back pain. People usually need to come in twice a week for about 4 weeks to see results. This table is also a safe way to combat the degenerative changes that occur over time as we age. It restores the natural full range of motion, which slows down the aging process. Patients that are older than 60 are often helped the most when there are few options other than surgery; this is because Dr Kate is a conservative Chiropractor who does not recommend using high velocity thrusts on their spine. The table actually decreases disc pressure up to 240 pounds per square inch. Much research has been done by Dr Cox, who is one of the originators of this technique who started practice the year Dr Kate was born. Come on in and give it a try!
Lets talk about Meniere's
It is kind of a nightmare. Imagine that you cannot go anywhere as the world would spin like a top inside your head...
Symptoms of Meniere’s disease include:
Recently I had a lovely patient who was unable to go out in public because her Meniere's symptoms were so bad. We made huge dietary changes towards a paleo-mediterranean/ low inflammatory diet, and a methylation nutrition protocol. I supported her system in clearing toxins, repairing her gut, and feeding her cells good nutrition and supplements. She also continued on with biodynamic craniosacral therapy which was incredibly helpful. There was a lot going on with her, but she prevailed, and kept on with our work. It has not even been a year and she is doing much better. Her husband drove her two and a half hours to get treatments. I have never met such kind spirits. There was stuff going on with her cerebellum, fourth ventricle, as well as a great need for settling. She is responding quite well, and understands that it was not going to be a quick fix pill situation. In the first few visits we worked on the floor as being up on the table was a bit too scary with the severe vertigo. Now for the first time she can lie down on the table!
I wanted to share this story because there is help for Meniere's. Never give up if you have this and have not had any relief. As a practitioner I stay present and orient to what arises nutritionally through applied kinesiology, as well as in the cranial territory of being with a person's system. I know I am a different sort of practitioner with the treatments that I combine. I am noticing in my practice that adding nutrition and supplements to my brain, nervous system, and mind body oriented practice of craniosacral therapy has vastly improved patient relief of various health concerns.
I truly love my work, and probably will never retire unless dealing with running a business becomes a complete killjoy. Patients like these are a gift, and they are who I was put on earth to work with. I was also put on earth to teach as I have a different perspective on health that can be breath of fresh air for those that have not yet found their health. When you find your heart, you will find your health. Get your stinking thinking out of the way, open your heart, and listen. Each day you will learn something new. We need both science and intuition.
In Health, Dr Kate
Understanding What Pain Does…
Pain on a physical or emotional level causes us to go into protective mode. We seize up around our pain. Pain causes fragmentation, encapsulation, and our life force is drained to contain the suffering. This is a good thing for our system to do for a short time. It helps the suffering be less overwhelming. Yet, over the long haul, this way of dealing with pain is no longer helpful. We stop functioning at our maximal potential. We become less coherent on a quantum/energetic level, and this shapes our tissue/structure over time. We are all part energy, and part matter. The energy that breathes us is intelligent and directs all of our cells to do their job.
How does craniosacral help pain?
Craniosacral therapy supports a unified, coherent, mind-body field that helps us orient to health rather than suffering. On a daily basis the more still we become, (less active monkey mind), the more coherence occurs. The more coherence we have creates more access to our inherent health and higher intelligence. That is why it is important to have time in your life each day if only for a few minutes to increase a quiet mind and create more energetic coherence.
Illness begins on any level of health:
Chemical= nutritional imbalances and toxins from air, water, and food
Structural= Imbalances in our structure (especially along the spine) can affect sympathetic nerves that influence our organs, lymphatics, blood supply, and nerves of the musculoskeletal system. This depletes our body’s energy to maintain optimal posture.
Energetic= this can be chronic exposure to EMF’s from: cell phones, wifi, etc…
Emotional= especially early events have a strong imprint on our neurochemical habits and pathways affecting our brain and entire cellular matrix. This is a huge part of health and wellness. Learning to work with emotional self regulation is optimal to staying healthy.
Craniosacral helps with the overall coherence of the body to increase health. In combination with this powerful work I also check the layers above and treat and refer accordingly. Often people need support on more than one layer at a time. My goal is to help them figure out where the health issue is coming from. Symptoms are not always where you would think they are coming from. Chinese medicine is 5000 years old and clearly states that. I will point you in the best direction for the quickest healing. When someone comes in with symptoms that persist, after getting treatments from other practitioners that is a flag for me that the kind of treatment was done well, but did not target the core problem. With chronic pain there is usually a perfect storm with pieces of a puzzle that brought their system out of coherence.
Fritz Popp speaks of coherence, and has studied health with respect to biophotons. He is a German Physicist: http://www.biontologyarizona.com/dr-fritz-albert-popp/
In Health, Dr Kate
Forgiveness, how we can get all of our energy back.
Holding grudges keeps your life force energy bound up in the past.
It affects your health in many negative ways, and can be the root of a disease process. This is one of the most obvious reasons to forgive: for your health and happiness. Forgiving is not the same as forgetting. Forgiving is letting go of bitterness and resentment, and changing your relationship to what happened. By changing how you carry and connect with what disturbed you, you are able to move on with your energy and reclaim your life force. Forgiveness is not rooted in making the person who judged, abused, or hurt you change. Forgiveness is acknowledging the pain and suffering you feel. Wouldn’t you like to have all of the energy that is meant for your body to be there to support your cellular function? Sometimes forgiving needs to be done on a regular basis to train our mind to not get stuck on the resentment or bitterness “radio station”.
Resentments are literally held in the tissue: the spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental body. In the long haul grudges end up hurting the people who harbor them.
Here are some quotes from Carolyn Myss to inspire you:
"When we harbor negative emotions toward others or toward ourselves,
or when we intentionally create pain for others,
we poison our own physical and spiritual systems.
By far the strongest poison to the human spirit
is the inability to forgive oneself or another person.
It disables a person's emotional resources.
The challenge is to refine our capacity to love others as well as ourselves
and to develop the power of forgiveness.”
"Forgiveness is no longer an option
but a necessity for healing."
"The soul always knows what to do to heal itself.
The challenge is to silence the mind."
~ Caroline Myss ~
Here is what I do to forgive myself and others:
.By Dr. Kate Klemer
Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy is wonderful at treating concussions. Yet sometimes it takes a deeper look at more influences that need to be addressed for our clients to get better. The danger of a concussion is when the brain bounces around the skull too hard causing a subdural bruise or hemotoma. Here are the symptoms: "Headache, confusion, vomiting, slurred speech, or coma may appear immediately or weeks after a head injury. In some cases, a subdural hematoma may not cause symptoms." This is what we need to watch out for to refer the client immediately to the emergency room. Otherwise they could fall into a coma.
Small or symptomless subdural hematomas may not need treatment and only need to be watched over time. For severe cases, surgery is often needed.
Craniosacral therapy helps to diffuse the forces that are being held in the body from the head blow trauma. Our work supports better movement of the tissue mobility and motility, as well as strengthening the access to healing forces within the body. No other therapy does this as clearly, and succinctly as biodynamic craniosacral therapy. Our work supports autonomic regulation quite well. We all know this as it is common sense correct? Someday neurologists will know this and start referring patients to us.
What happens in my practice:
What I have seen in my practice is that a few crucial things can complicate healing time. Once I found all the factors involved, I have seen powerful healing of post concussive syndrome, and traumatic brain injury turning that before making multifactoral changes had not turned things around.
Limit screen time and avoid blue light:
A huge factor is screen time. People are now on their phones as well as their I Pads and computers more than ever. The first thing that bothers concussion clients is their eyes. They have to limit screen time to no more than an hour at a time. They also should get the "flux" application for their computer which changes the screen color so that it is easier on their eyes. If you have an I-Phone swipe up on your screen and put the night screen. Android phone users go to your settings and look up night mode, or look for a blue light filter App. Screen exposure to blue light at night is a bad thing, as it effectively tricks your brain into thinking that it’s still daytime. It suppresses the secretion of melatonin, a hormone that is produced at night and prepares the body for sleep. Use the same principle when your client has a concussion or migraine, as to lower their exposure to blue light.
Another major factor is the gut brain connection being compromised:
1) Autonomic dysregulation from brain trauma can influence the wiring to the gut.
The nerve that influences the gut from the brain is the Vagus nerve. So signals can be hyper or hypo activated. Remember studying facilitated nerves? That would cause a hyper activated Vagus nerve. Parasympathetic freeze can cause hypoarousal and decease the motility of the gut wall.
2) If your client is eating gluten, and food laced with glyphosate/roundup it is likely their traumatic brain injury and concussion will not improve, as these substances cause leaky gut.
3) Concussions themselves also cause leaky gut/dysbiosis. The underlying mechanism for this is that when trauma occurs, stress happens and the mucousal lining gets compromised. The tight cell junctions in the gut become leaky, and food particles, bacteria, and chemical substances are leaked into blood stream. This sets a person up for autoimmune issues.
4)Lastly if a person is over 50 years old, or has a gene mutation that makes it difficult to methylate they will not get the enough nutrients for their brain to heal. Methylation is a process that is central to life sustaining and healing, and happens every second in every cell. The B vitamins need to be in a specific form so that the body and brain can use them. Low doses of Methyl B12, and Methyltetrahydro folate are recommended to help the brain heal. There are not too many brands that have low doses, or less active forms that are safer like Adenosyl Cobalamin, and Hydroxy Cobalamine. Consult with me on dosage if you want to address these key nutrients. Professor David Smith from Oxford University states: "We already know about homocysteine, a toxic amino acid that damages the brain, which can be lowered with inexpensive B vitamins. "This is the first treatment that has been shown to potentially arrest Alzheimer’s related brain shrinkage, it has been reported that a 53% decrease in the rate of brain shrinkage in those with high homocysteine levels given inexpensive B vitamins." Healing often involves the ability to lower inflammation . By lowering homocysteine you are lowering inflammation, that helps an inflamed brain.
Conclusion: It is our way and quite helpful to see what comes up in the sessions via the inherent treatment plan that arises from the Breath of Life. Knowing anatomy speaks the language of the body, so you can "listen" more clearly and "see" what is being shown. What I have seen in practice is that these treatments effectiveness is much higher when coupled with addressing gut brain support and balance.
Here are some things you can include in your treatment.
A) Change the client's computer screen and phone to decrease blue light exposure
B) Put them on Omega 3 oils as much of your brain and cells need good fat to thrive
C) Put them on a good probiotic and digestive enzymes/prebiotic
D) Get their 23andme results to me, and I can help you figure out which types of B12, and B9 are best
E) Get them off Gluten, and GMO laced foods that have roundup/Glyphosate in them
F) See them every week until their symptoms start to stabilize. It may take once a week for a year, do not be discouraged.
G) Get them a helmet if they like to bike, and away from contact sports.
All of these things can completely turn around their progress for the better, and since we have such a powerful way to treat the brain, body, and nervous system we could be hero's... (tribute to Mr Bowie)
Good Luck. Dr Kate
Dr. Kate Klemer, Cranial Conference Presenter 2016, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico
Did you know that your brain influences your gut, and your gut talks to your brain? Your gut is also called “the second brain. ”The enteric nervous system is said to contain about 100 million neurons, which is more than in either the spinal cord or the peripheral nervous system.” Why are we designed that way? Well let's read on…
A big part of our emotions are influenced by the nerves in our gut. The Vagus nerve innervates the gut. To clarify, the gut includes the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, and large intestine
The Vagus Nerve Reads The Gut Microbiome!
● By reading the gut microbiome the vagus nerve initiates a response to modulate
inflammation based on whether or not it detects pathogenic versus
non-pathogenic organisms. In this way, the gut microbiome can have an
affect on your mood, stress levels and overall inflammation.
Your Flora Is Also Known As Your Gut Biome
Your microbiome is your friend. There is a co-regulation, and co-dependence that occurs between this community of microorganisms and our health in many ways. Our microbiome supports food digestion, protects against pathogens, provides essential nutrients, and trains our immune system. A disturbance of flora is linked to disease.
Facts about our microbiome...
○ Is inhabited by 100 trillion
○ This is 10x the number of cells in the
○ Has 150x as many genes than we have
○ Co-exists with gut pathogens
○ Regulates the immune system
○ Regulates the endocrine system
○ Modulates digestion (Vitamin K2, single
chain fatty acids, and fructose)
○ Weighs 2-6 pounds
These Are Ways the Gut and Brain Connect:
1. Immune system= via endocrine/cytokines chemicals produced by the body
2. Neural Sensory (primarily Vagus Nerve picking up info from the gut, going to the brain)
3. Neurotransmitters made by microbiome =endocrine system to the brain
4. Solitary Nucleus brainstem + amygdala, Insular Cortex, Hypothalamus connect to Vagus
5. Corticosteroids via HPA axis affect Microbiome
6.The cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway. Efferent/motor activity= from the brain/ vagus nerve causes acetylcholine release in organs which lowers inflammation.
Communication of the gut-brain axis is bidirectional:
The brain and gut are also connected by the endocrine system. In a study a baby mouse was taken away from its Mother. What they found is that the gut flora is
altered in the baby mouse after that stressful experience. They also learned that stress and sleep deprivation are known to increase cortisol ,which causes overgrowth of bad bacteria. An overgrowth of gut pathogens triggers the immune system to release more cortisol making prostaglandins which cause swelling in the body.
Gut pathology is linked to brain pathology:
● Anxiety and depressive disorders are linked with autoimmune disease
○ Irritable bowel syndrome is linked with anxiety/depression
○ Schizophrenia is linked with celiac disease
○ Autism spectrum is linked with gut pathology (clostridium, and abnormal level of gut bacteria
*Leaky gut is related to depression which is related to an inflamed brain.
Probiotics stop this!
Lacking of the microbiome creates brain changes
A study showed that germ free mice have too much myelin in their prefrontal cortex. This connects lacking microbiome with disease. Myelin irregularities are associated with schizophrenia. This was reversed in mice when probiotics were given to the mice.
What causes leaky gut (AKA dysbiosis)?
Leaky Gut causes gastrointestinal inflammation, which creates food intolerances, and immune system issues:
Here are the full body effects of leaky gut:
There is a lot of confusion around wheat/gliadin.
The bottom line is that all gliadin/wheat causes gut injury. The mechanism for this is that a substance called zonulin is excreted by the gut when exposed to lipopolysaccharides, (these come from the death of bacteria), wheat, and glyphosate/roundup. Zonulin then goes systemic and injures the gut wall, the blood brain barrier, the vascular system, and kidney tubules. This sets people up for lots of health issues if it is a chronic exposure.
Zonuling Breaches Barriers In The Body That Protect Us,
Top causes of increased zonulin and development of leaky gut:
● Overgrowth of harmful organisms, like bacteria or yeast in the intestine
A. SIBO = small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (caused by low HCL, Ileocecal valve issues, low enz)
B. Fungal dysbiosis or candida overgrowth
C. Parasite infections
● Gliadin in the diet (gluten containing foods)
Elevated zonulin levels and leaky gut are associated with the following:
1. Crohn's disease
2. Type 1 Diabetes
3. Multiple Sclerosis
6. Inflammatory Bowel Disease
It is a good idea to not eat wheat very often.
What is going on nowadays that is creating so many chronic diseases???
● More environmental Toxins
● Too much sugar in mainstream diet
● Too many antibiotics, and given too young= leaky gut
● C-Sections, no breast feeding, no skin to skin with parents (this builds baby’s microbiome)
● Too many medications= leaky gut
● Low fat diets
● Amalgam/mercury fillings in the teeth
● Genetically Modified Foods= leaky gut
● Poor methylation= epigenetics
Facts about baby's microbiome:
Low fat diets and drugs:
Statistics show that the increase of low fat diets and use of statin drugs to lower cholesterol have created an increase of dementia/Alzheimer’s disease.
This pesticide destroys the Shikimate pathway in plants. This pathway makes a substance called Chorismate, and this in turn makes amino acids that we use: tryptophan, phenylalanine, and tyrosine. These amino acids make neurotransmitters. Our microbiome is basically microscopic plants. The bottom line is that roundup destroys our microbiome.
Stephanie Seneff, Phd is a MIT researcher. She says: “ at today’s rate, by 2025, one in two children will be autistic. The side effects of autism closely mimic those of glyphosate toxicity including zinc and iron deficiency, low serum sulfate, seizures, and mitochondrial disorder.”
Rats fed a lifelong diet of one of the best selling strains of genetically modified corn suffered tumors and multiple organ damage.
● Gut bacteria given to a germ free mouse, from a heavy mouse, made the germ
free mouse heavy. When a thin mouse gave a germ free
mouse their microbiome it caused them to be thin.
● Mice raised in a germ free environment where given specific bacteria, and it
was found to change their behavior
● Low Serotonin and High Dopamine is a recipe for violence and aggression
● 50% of all norepinephrine/noradrenaline is synthesized and used in the Gut
● Stress hormones cause rapid growth (4X) of pathogen e. Coli
● Bacteria steal Iron to grow rapidly, and can cause Iron deficient anemia
● Adrenalin Increases biofilm formation, Biofilm is what 90% of bacteria live in
● Bad bugs eat sugar and refined carbs
● Antibiotics kill good bacteria as well as bad bacteria and upset the gut
● 25% women from 40-60 years old are on antidepressants, their gut biome is off!
Brain health depends on a healthy gut environment.
Many symptoms we experience daily in our heads , are due to problems that are based in our guts. Modern lifestyle and medical practices have greatly harmed our microbiome. GMO foods interfere with our gut bacteria’s ability to produce neurotransmitters. Inflammation from leaky gut destroys serotonin, leading to insomnia, pain, anxiety, and excess stress. Overuse of antibiotics, poor stomach function, and lack of gut motility creates small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
Here is a list of what the good guy microbiome do:
● Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species produce GABA
● Lactobacillus produces Acetylcholine
● Escherichia, Bacillus, and Saccharomyces produce
● Candida, Streptococcus, Escherichia, and Enterococcus
● Bacillus and Serratia produce dopamine
What we can do to support our gut brain axis...
One last little tidbit of science. People with bacterial overgrowth in their small intestine/SIBO were studied in conjunction with concussions. Those with SIBO and concussion had the lowest score of neurological function, those with SIBO and no concussion had the next lowest score of neurological function, and those with a concussion without SIBO had the best neurological score. What this is saying is that gut imbalances strongly affect neurological function, more so than a concussion!
Yours in Health, Dr. Kate
GENETIC NUTRITION TESTING: You Must read this, as you can start preventing disease now before it is too late!
Methylation is a big word. Take a breath and put that aside for now because it is essential for the optimal function of almost all your body systems. It occurs billions of times every second. In doing so, it helps repair your DNA on a daily basis, it helps keep inflammation in check, it replenishes the compounds needed for detoxification, and it helps maintain a stable mood.
Genes load the gun, but environment pulls the trigger:
Genes give us information in terms of helping us know where to look for potential problems in the methylation cycle and maybe helping us to tailor treatment, but really it’s our lifestyle, diet, and disease states that are probably more important. So we need to consider a patient’s internal and external environment in addition to the genetic predisposition to really understand their functional health.
What is functional health?
It is using a method to test how your body is functioning rather than if you have a disease or not. Most diseases start way before any disease based tests show abnormal findings. Functional health attempts to prevent disease over the long haul and cannot be compared to disease states as it is like comparing apples and oranges. For example you may have an irritated gallbladder, without any gallbladder disease. Functional health practitioners like myself would find that dysfunction often after you have undergone all the testing one could possible imagine. Just because tests don’t show any abnormalities does not mean you are healthy. You may be heading for a disease if you do not address the early dysfunction.
My family has a medical history of alzheimer’s, diabetes, heart disease, and strokes. All of these diseases begin with a functional imbalance that does not show up on lab work many, many years before the diagnosis and medical tests are positive. Why are you waiting for the diagnosis when you can take action now? READ ON PLEASE.
Nervous system and stress handling with methylation:
Let’s start with our mood. If we look at how methylation supports the brain and nervous system, there are two different functions where this works. One is in neurotransmitter synthesis and degradation; this is really important in stabilizing mood and improving stress resilience. One of the genetic predispositions to mood stability as it relates to methylation, is a COMT mutation. Patients who have this mutation may have a more difficult time recovering from a stressful event. We know that if someone with the COMT mutation experiences something stressful it takes them longer to return to baseline. This is because they don’t metabolize stress neurotransmitters, like epinephrine and norepinephrine, as rapidly as someone might without this mutation or without impaired methylation. The good news is that there are supplements you can take that are enzymes that support this genetic mutation to work better.
Methylation is also really important in supporting myelin. Myelin can be thought of as the sort of protective coating or insulation along the nerves. If you have injury to your myelin, you can it is like having frayed electrical cords that have vulnerable and exposed wires. Methylation is important in helping to maintain the integrity of the myelin, and maintaining a healthy nervous system. Supporting these things is one of the best things we can do to support mood and cognitive function. Injuries to the myelin underlie the changes seen in multiple sclerosis. Myelin is an incredibly important structure in the nervous system.
Genetics and disease:
Epigenetic differences in individuals can explain why people with the same genetics can have a different state of health and function from each other. Methylation is one of the major factors in identical twins who have an identical genetic code, but may have a slightly different appearance, and or can suffer from different diseases. Epigenetic factors include lifestyle, upbringing, and environmental exposures. These factors turn genes on and off for better or for worse. Methylation is a major factor in keeping genetic mutations quiet that hurt our functional health, and can eventually cause disease.
In identical twins, there’s a 50% concordance rate, which means there is a 50% chance that if one twin has it, the other one will have it, but it’s not 100%. This is because of epigenetic factors.
Methylation is a term that comes from biochemistry. Methylation is the body adding a tag, or a work order to parts of DNA. This tag/methyl group can be added to a gene, a vitamin, or an enzyme. When our system adds that tag/methyl group; it is technically called methylation. When methylation happens, it changes DNA function which turns genes on or off; which is called gene expression. The way in which methylation affects our DNA is incredibly important. Methylation helps turn gene mutations off, so they’re not expressed. Optimizing our methylation reduces our risk of developing certain diseases, and some types of cancers. Our understanding now is that genes alone account for less than 10% of disease. The environmental/epigenetic factors that an individual is exposed to from the moment of conception to when they die, accounts for 90% of the diseases that we’re dealing with. Methylation has a profound influence on the gene mutations being expressed or not. We want to do everything we can to optimize our methylation, because it increases our health and prevents disease.
Symptoms of Poor Methylation: are pretty vast, but they can be broken down into a few key categories, so let’s go over those one by one. FYI your capability to methylate decreases with age.
Methylation can be associated with production of important compounds needed in cellular energy production and metabolism; oftentimes patients present with:
***Almost that entire symptom list could be caused by gut issues alone. So we fix the gut and methylation together.
What impairs methylation other than a gene mutation?
Chronic gut issues, such as leaky gut, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, nutrient deficiencies, or chronic infection will impair nutrient absorption and methylation. Chronic infection contributes to an overburdened detoxification system, which impairs methylation. Poor methylation can be caused by environmental toxicity, heavy metals, mercury toxicity, high copper, pesticides, fungicides, volatile organic compounds, phthalates , glyphosate/roundup, and genetically modified foods. Liver exposure to toxins affect methylation as well.
Detoxification of your own biochemistry, as well as environmental toxins & pesticides:
Detoxification is one of the most important roles that methylation supports in our body. Methylation helps to remove toxins from the body. Impaired methylation can actually block or inhibit detoxification. As a result, you may have a higher heavy metal burden, which could lead to things like mercury toxicity. Poor/slow methylation may make it difficult to recover from SIBO
(small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), or chronic yeast overgrowth. It is a two way street. Gut issues strain methylation, and poor methylation from activated genetic mutations influence the gut and liver.
You can also over-methylate:
Our caution is to start methylation support slowly, with a practitioner who can monitor your progress. Improving methylation will actually lift the block on detoxification. This results in toxins moving into the bloodstream and activating your immune response. Detoxing too fast can make you feel as though you have the flu; causing fatigue, and malaise. Starting methylation support should be done slowly, while we monitor symptoms of increased detoxification. In the beginning it is wise to be checked in the process monthly, until things settle.
Immune System and Methylation:
If you find yourself catching every cold and flu that comes through town, then it may be that methylation is impaired or not functioning optimally for you. There is some new research linking poor methylation to autoimmunity. If someone’s having a lot of problems with immune function, I consider methylation as one thing that’s possibly going wrong.
MTHFR stands for methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase. MTHFR is one gene that’s involved in the methylation cycle, and it probably is the main driver of methylation, and specifically, it makes methylfolate, However when we look at methylation, we need to consider over a dozen genes that contribute to the methylation cycle. This is where many practitioners and self treating people go wrong.
Poor diet is something that’s going to impair methylation. If you’re eating a Standard American Diet (SAD), or a diet that includes a lot of processed and refined foods, that will contribute to inflammation. These types of diets cause you to have insufficient B vitamins, zinc deficiency, or even magnesium deficiency. These vitamins and minerals are important cofactors in supporting the methylation cycle, among others.
The following medications affect levels of B vitamins, which play a crucial role in methylation:
Antacids because of their effect on stomach acid and nutrient absorption, Methotrexate, metformin, contraceptives, blood pressure meds, etc…
Zonulin is a substance in our body that is released in the gut when we are exposed to wheat and glyphosate/roundup. It makes the gut wall leaky and can also have the same affect on the blood brain barrier and kidneys. It is important to avoid these two substances by eating organic and avoiding most grains other than rice.
Too much methylation support from too many methylation supplements. This can cause over-methylation, where you end up with feedback inhibition and reducing the body’s internal production of methylfolate. For example if a man takes testosterone cream he can eventually reduce his body’s own ability to produce testosterone. This can happen with taking too many methylation supplements.
Why kinesiology is so helpful with analyzing methylation:
When I check your methylation pathways I am testing the function of what is actually happening now, rather than basing the supplements only on the genetic mutations of what could happen if a mutation is turned on epigenetically. In my view muscle testing kinesiology is the best way to test what is actually happening in your system. Blood work is not sensitive enough to pick up on a pre diseased state of health. Applied Kinesiology is the best way to check functional/non-diseased health to catch early patterns for potential disease down the road.
How I treat methylation Issues:
First I recommend eating a nutrient-dense, low-inflammation paleo like diet to support healthy methylation, as well as doing stress management, whether it’s daily progressive relaxation, sitting meditation, yoga, pilates, tai chi — doing something to help manage stress. This is a lifetime way of eating, and should be followed 80-90% of the time depending on other factors such as temperament, stress level, toxin exposure, and genetic mutations. Then we start testing what your body shows for activated mutations that need vitamin and mineral support.
Follow up visits:
I repeat functional methylation testing with wholistic kinesiology. Once someone has been on methylation support, we will tweak their supplements by rechecking the methylation pathways. Often patients will start to need different things at different times of year, and doses will change over time. Your methylation supplements are tested exactly for you as a personally designed mutivitamin/mineral! Issues you have had for years will start to drop away over time. I recommend that when you start that you write down all your symptoms so that you can look back a year or two later and see the difference. You are creating a higher baseline of good health that you often never knew you could have.
Homocysteine the main culprit:
Homocysteine, Alzheimer’s Disease, and Active Folate
Up to half of all Americans may carry a genetic variation that prevents the body, including the brain, from optimally using folic acid. Scientists believe that this genetic polymorphism may be linked with an increased risk of dementia. Fortunately, a non-prescription form of bioactive folate, 5-MTHF, can cross the blood-brain barrier and effectively reduce homocysteine. Elevated homocysteine has been linked with cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.
Many people suffering from cardiovascular disease, stroke, migraines, and dementia could be suffering from the adverse effects of elevated levels of homocysteine in their blood. This condition has also been linked to other problems, including osteoporosis, birth defects, macular degeneration, and certain types of cancer.
In most cases, doctors will not consider testing for homocysteine because they are not trained in how it affects the body. Most health-conscious people know their cholesterol level but few know their equally important homocysteine levels.
Folic acid/B9 is called bioactive folate (5-methyltetrahydrofolate, or 5-MTHF) and it prevents homocysteine-related conditions that disable and kill many Americans. The reason this is not mainstream news is that it is not as profitable and able to be patented because it is a specific form of Folic Acid/B9.
There is a lot more profit in dispensing medications rather than learning to take care of your system each and every day. You must remember that medical doctors are not trained in wellness, unless they have trained outside of their education in functional medicine. Ostensibly they are checking your health status from 0-30% of wellness. The standards are pretty low. Their expertise is finding and treating disease, and that occurs at 0-30% of our overall health. Most do not know about methylation. This kind of care is in the realm of wellness care, functional care, via practitioners like myself and Naturopaths. So if you ask your regular MD about this do not be surprised if they don’t know about it, or put it down because they do not want to admit that they do not know about it… Often patients get very different answers about wellness from MD’s because they are not trained in it. Yet everyone seems to assume they are wellness experts. They are not, they are disease experts. I am a wellness expert.
Thank you, I needed to clarify that. Both types of doctors are super important. But as a consumer you should know the difference.
Stay healthy and happy!
Dr Kate has been in practice since 1989. She utilizes Chiropractic, Nutrition, and Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy to help her patients.