Category Archives: Nutrition
BACK TO SCHOOL GERMS
Back to school often means the start of what we call the cold and flu season. With so many children sharing space, germs are inevitably part of the equation. Conventional wisdom urges us to fear the germs and teaches us that the only way to keep yourself and your family healthy is to scrub, disinfect, and go to war with them! While it is important to practice good hygiene, it is time to shift focus to what we can do to boost our immune strength. With this approach, we are focused on building, maintaining, and nourishing our body’s natural abilities to withstand and cope with illness. Instead of fearing the germs, let’s empower our bodies.
Dr. Shaw’s Top Ten Ways to Beat the Cold & Flu.
- Chiropractic Care. No surprise here! The nervous system supplies the nerves to the important immune system organs. A healthy nervous system means the immune system can function efficiently. Additional adjustments outside your regular protocol while you are sick will give a boost to your immune system and help your body heal faster. Don’t stay away when you are sick!
- Supplements. Whole food supplements, herbs, and homeopathic remedies can be used to up-regulate your immune system to help fend off illness. They can also be used in acute situations in higher doses so immune response is stronger and efficient. Avoid synthetic over the counter medications as they will distract your body from its job of healing. Discuss what options are right for you during your next visit with Dr. Shaw.
- Healthy Diet.
- Rich in colorful vegetables and fruits.
- Quality protein (grass-fed, organic, wild): eggs, fish, organic meat, and poultry.
- Healthy fats: coconut oil, avocado oils, nuts oils, olive oil.
- Incorporate a variety of nuts and seeds.
- Limit grains except quinoa, buckwheat, and wild rice.
- Healthy Gut. 80% of the immune system resides in the gut!!! Take good care of it by avoiding food allergens (main culprits are gluten, dairy and soy) and by balancing gut flora with fermented foods like sauerkraut, pickles, and kombucha.
- Avoid Toxins.
- Hand sanitizers and flu shots are many people’s go to solutions, but they burden your system with chemicals and hinder your body’s ability to ward off illness.
- Avoid consuming, inhaling, and absorbing chemical pollutants.
- Choose organic foods and toxin-free personal products.
- Avoid OTC medications.
- Drink distilled or reverse osmosis water.
- Choose natural cleaning products and avoid the use of commercial air fresheners.
- Add plants to each room and crack a window all year round to improve air quality in your home.
- Reduce Sugar/Fructose/Carbs. Sugar competes for space in your immune cells with Vitamin C! The more sugar in your system, the less Vitamin C can get into your white blood cells causing immune suppression.
- Hydration and Minerals. Drink ½ your body weight in ounces of water per day to keep you hydrated. Your body needs water to flush the lymphatic system of viruses and bacteria. Improve your body’s ability to absorb water by adding a pinch of sea salt to add minerals, and a squeeze of lemon to alkalize the water. Coffee, black tea, smoking, and alcohol all dehydrate so minimize their consumption and be sure to up your water intake if you do consume them.
- Healthy Fats. Don’t be scared of fat but make sure they are the healthy fats. Coconut oil, cocoa butter, butter, eggs, avocado, flax seed, sesame oil, olive oil, and wild caught fish are wonderful sources.
- Rest and Reducing Stress. Our adrenal glands are responsible for immune system response and strength so take good care of them by minimizing stress and make adequate sleep and down time a priority in your life.
- Essential Oils. Good quality pure essential oils can aid our immune function. Many have antiviral, antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-infectious properties making them a wonderful companion through the “flu season”. Diffusing them and applying them topically can be beneficial. Be sure you research the oils before using them. They are incredibly potent! Thieves oil is a great oil with many purposes and should be a staple in every home.
Spring Allergy Guide
SPRING ALLERGY GUIDE
If you suffer with seasonal allergies you know springtime brings challenges! Sneezing, itchy eyes, congestion, and fatigue during the spring are symptoms many allergy sufferers are familiar with. They are also signs that your body could use support as allergies are a barometer for the overall strength of your immune system. The heavier the immune burden, the more “allergic” a person tends to be and more strongly they may experience the symptoms. Working on up regulating the immune system will help to build strength and decrease a person’s sensitivity to their natural environment. Additionally, since the liver is responsible for clearing histamines in the body, eating foods that support the liver will increase your ability to clear out the histamines and offer symptom sufferers the relief they so desire. Here are some tips to help you through allergy season.
- Avoid over the counter allergy medications. They suppress symptoms instead of addressing the root cause of the problem.
- Avoid pro-inflammatory foods. Major culprits are dairy, sugar, gluten, and refined carbohydrates.
- Increase anti-inflammatory foods. Ex: foods high in omega 3 fatty acids, leafy greens, blueberries, fermented vegetables, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and green tea.
- Incorporate local honey in to your diet all year long.
- Eat an overall diet that includes protein with each meal and good fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, butter, seeds, and nut butters.
- Reduce stress and increase rest.
- Minimize exposure to known allergens. Avoid mold and mildew. Shower after being outdoors on high pollen days.
- Stay hydrated. Drink half your weight in ounces per day.
- Talk with Dr. Shaw about whole food and homeopathic supplement options.
Dr. Shaw likes to use Antronex, Allerplex, and Allergy homeopathy spray for patients suffering with allergy symptoms. Talk with her today to see what she would recommend for you.
High Fructose Corn Syrup – Don’t Believe the Hype!
Let me be very clear…there is a HUGE difference. HFCS is dangerous to your health and should be avoided.
Sucrose or sugar is made up of 50% glucose & 50% fructose. HFCS is only made up of fructose. The fructose can only be metabolized in the liver. Glucose, on the other hand, is metabolized in every cell in the body including the brain which accounts for 25% of the glucose metabolism of the entire body.
Mice given a diet of fructose only showed livers plugged with fat, cirrhosis of the liver, male rats did not reach adulthood, anemia, high cholesterol, enlarged heart and delayed testicular development. In the same study, the mice that were given glucose only diets were unaffected.
Other problems with HFCS is the that most corn in the US is genetically modifed and has high levels of pesticide. Recently, there has evidence that HFCS contains high levels of mercury due to the processing.
Please do not go running for the artificial sweetners, they are even more dangerous. While sugar is not a health food, your body does know how to metabolize it. Use it in moderation along with lots of good proteins and veggies and your health should not suffer.
Irradiated lettuce and spinach
I received the following alert from the Organic Consumers Association (http://www.organicconsumers.org/). I am posting it because I feel it is so important that consumers are aware of what the FDA and the food industry is doing to the food supply
Alert of the Week:FDA OKs Irradiated Lettuce and Spinach Rather than dealing with the problems inherent in a disease-ridden factory-farmed food system, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced in mid-September it will allow the irradiation of lettuce and spinach. Food irradiation is the controversial practice of bombarding food with high levels of x-rays (ionizing radiation) in order to destroy disease causing pathogens. Unfortunately, in the process of irradiation, other hazards arise, like the creation of toxic free radicals, vitamin and nutrient loss, and the formation of carcinogenic chemicals. While irradiated lettuce and spinach must be labeled in supermarkets, there are currently no labeling requirements whatsoever for restaurants, schools, hospitals, or nursing homes serving irradiated produce or other nuked foods such as beef. Over the past decade, OCA and our allies in the organic community have prevented corporate agribusiness and the nuclear industry from contaminating organic standards. Food irradiation is prohibited on any product labeled as “organic.” There is currently a 30 day comment period for the FDA’s new rule.