What’s Wrong with Her?

A few weeks ago, I was adjusting a little girl who receives care here with her Mom and Dad. After they had left, another patient, who witnessed the little girl getting adjusted, asked me, “What’s wrong with her.”kid-2815780_1920 (1)

I asked what she meant. Her response inferred there was a health problem with her, like headaches, low back pain, or neck pain, or anxiety. I replied that there was nothing “wrong” with her, that she did not have any symptoms, that her Mom and Dad bring her here for the same reasons that they receive care here. They want their daughter’s Nervous System to be functioning at its most optimal level, so that she can continue to function physically, emotionally, and psychologically at her best level of performance, and so that her body can continue to heal itself at its best level possible.

For many people, chiropractic care is synonymous with the correction of physical problems, whether it’s pain, like headaches, neck pain, or low back pain, and/or emotional problems, such as anxiety, depression, and energy loss. Yes, it’s true, many people begin to receive chiropractic care due to health problems that have reached the tipping point, where it becomes difficult to continue with their life.

What is also true is that chiropractic care has very little to do with helping you FEEL better. It has everything to do with helping you FUNCTION better. Once you function better, then EVERYTHING about you can begin to work better, whether it’s physical or emotional. So when a little girl is on the table receiving her adjustment, my goal is to help EVERYTHING about her work better, so that she does not grow up with the SAME PROBLEMS as her Mom and Dad did. My goal is to help EVERYONE function better so that they can heal at an improved capacity from how they did the day or week or month before.

Just think, if you continue to climb the ladder of health, week after week, month after month, year after year, where you can be in six months, or a year, or five years?

As far as all my young lives receiving their life enhancing adjustments, I would like to see the next generations’ health at a higher level than the generation of today. Chiropractic care can go a long way to ensuring that that becomes a reality.

Will you be Part of this Epidemic?

If you’ve been following the recent news stories and research, you know that Opioid use is becoming more and more rampant.

Here are some facts:drugs

1 The US consumes more than 80% of the global Opioid pill production even though it has less than 5% of the world’s population.

2 In 2015, almost 40% of Americans were using prescription painkillers. 1

3 100 million people are estimated to suffer from chronic pain in the US. 2

4 Nearly ½ of all US Opiod overdose deaths are due to prescription opiods. 3

Why are Opiates addictive?

Opiates can be found in several widely-used drugs including: heroin, morphine, codeine and hydrocodone. Opiates create artificial endorphins in the brain -which produce in the early stages of use warm, good feelings in the user. But over time, opiates trick the brain into stopping the production of these endorphins naturally. At this point, the only way an opiate addict can experience positive feelings is by using the drug in question. This process is the reason why opiates are so addictive.

Why has Opiate addiction increased drastically in the last 10 years?

Here’s the generally accepted theory-

Starting in the late 1990s, a handful of pharmaceutical corporations promoted prescription opiates as the solution to America’s physical pain. Large numbers of people then started to take these drugs — and because Oxycontin and Percocet and the rest have such powerful chemical hooks, many found themselves addicted. Doctors in many parts of the world — including Canada and some European countries — prescribe more powerful opiates than their peers in the United States. If what we’ve been told is right, they should become addicted in huge numbers. But this doesn’t occur. The Canadian physician Gabor Maté argues in his book “In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts” that studies examining the medicinal use of narcotics for pain relief find no significant risk of addiction.4

Here’s a second theory that makes more sense to me –

Opiate use is climbing because people feel more distressed and disconnected, and are turning to anesthetics to cope with their psychological pain.

Addiction rates are not spread evenly across the United States, as you would expect if chemical hooks were the primary cause. On the contrary, addiction is soaring in areas such as the Rust Belt, the South Bronx and the forgotten towns of New England, where people there say they are lonelier and more insecure than they have been in living memory.

So if you agree with the second theory, opiate use is increasing because people feel more distressed and disconnected.

Wow! If this is the case, and you are faced with the choice of becoming more distressed and disconnected and becoming addicted to opiates OR choosing to become MORE connected and less distressed, which would you choose?

If your answer is #2, then please, if you know someone who is distressed and disconnected from an inability to adapt to their accumulated physical, chemical and emotional stress, let them know they have healthier options! You could very well help save the life of someone you know and care for.

Thanks for taking a major step towards becoming more connected and less distressed about your health and life.

1 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. Results From the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed

2 Tables. https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/NSDUH-DetTabs-2015/NSDUH-DetTabs-2015/NSDUH-DetTabs-2015.pdf. Published September 2016. Accesssed March 27, 2017.

3 Opioid Data Analysis. Opioid Overdose. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Website. https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/data/analysis.html. Accessed March 27, 2017.

4 http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-hari-prescription-drug-crisis-cause-20170112-story.html

How Good of a Manager are You?

Whether it is down to work pressure, money worries or relationship troubles, most of us experience stress at some point in our lives. In fact, around 75% of people report experiencing moderate to high levels of stress over the past month. It is well known that stress can cause sleep problems, headache and raise the risk of depression. Here are some important ways in which stress can affect your health.

It is our response to this fight-or-flight response that determines our ability to successfully adapt, and thus, our ability to be healthy.stress free

“Stress is caused by the loss or threat of loss of the personal, social and material resources that are primary to us. So, threat to self, threat to self-esteem, threat to income, threat to employment and threat to our family or our health,” Stevan Hobfoll, PhD, the Judd and Marjorie Weinberg presidential professor and chair at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, IL, and member of the American Psychological Association (APA), told Medical News Today.

Stress levels ‘too high’ in Americans

An annual survey by the APA, completed by 3,068 adults in the US during August 2014, revealed that the primary cause of stress among Americans is money, with 72% of respondents reporting feeling stressed about finances at some point over the past month. Of these, 22% said they had felt “extreme stress” in the past month as a result of money worries.

The second most common cause of stress among Americans was found to be work, followed by the economy, family responsibilities and personal health concerns.

On a positive note, average stress levels among Americans have decreased since 2007. On a 10-point scale, respondents rated their stress levels as 4.9, compared with 6.2 in 2007. However, the APA say such levels remain significantly higher than the 3.7 stress rating we consider to be healthy.

I know that when I ask new patients about their recent stress levels, a typical rating is anywhere from 6-10 with 10 being the worst, so if 3.7 is considered healthy, you need to develop the strategies to be able to ADAPT more successfully, as opposed to having less stress.

“[Last] year’s survey continues to reinforce the idea that we are living with a level of stress that we consider too high,” says Norman B. Anderson, CEO and executive vice president of the APA.

The surprising health implications of stress

“Stress is significantly associated with virtually all the major areas of disease,” Prof. Hobfoll told MNT. “Stress is seldom the root cause of disease, but rather interacts with our genetics and our state of our bodies in ways that accelerate disease.”

Some of the more well-known implications of stress that you may have experienced include sleep deprivation, headaches, anxiety and depression. But increasingly, researchers are uncovering more and more ways in which stress can harm our health. 

Heart health

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), stress can influence behaviors that have negative implications for heart health.Heart attack

One study found stress could increase heart attack risk by 23%.

Have you ever arrived home after a stressful day at work and reached for that bottle of wine? Many people have.

In January 2015, MNT reported on a study that found working long hours was associated with risky alcohol use, which the study researchers say is partly down to the belief that “alcohol use alleviates stress that is caused by work pressure and working conditions.”

Diabetes

You may be surprised to learn that stress has been associated with increased risk of diabetes. In January last year, a study published in JAMA Psychiatry found that women with symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – a condition triggered by very distressing events – were more likely to develop diabetes than those without PTSD.

Periods of stress increase production of the hormone cortisol, which can increase the amount of glucose in the blood – a potential explanation for why stress has been linked to higher risk of diabetes.

For people who already have diabetes, stress can lead to poorer management of the condition. As well as interfering with stress hormones and increasing blood glucose levels, the American Diabetes Association note that stressed patients with diabetes may be less likely to take care of themselves.

“They may drink more alcohol or exercise less. They may forget, or not have time, to check their glucose levels or plan good meals,” states the organization.

Alzheimer’s disease

While the exact causes of the condition are unclear, past studies have suggested that stress may contribute to its development.
A study found that for seniors with mild cognitive impairment, anxiety could speed up progression toward Alzheimer’s.

In March 2013, MNT reported on a study by researchers from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, which found high levels of stress hormones in the brains of mice were associated with large amounts of beta amyloid plaques – proteins believed to play a role in Alzheimer’s.

Fertility

Approximately 1 in 8 couples in the US have problems getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy. Increasingly, researchers are suggesting stress may be a contributing factor.

In May 2014, a study published in the journal Fertility and Sterility that found stress in men can lead to reduced sperm and semen quality, which may negatively affect fertility.

How can you protect against stress-induced health problems?

Self talk, meditation, therapy, exercise, diet improvements are all great ways to protect against stress induced health problems. My recommendation?

Get yourself under Network Care stat! Or if you are currently under care, make a commitment to continue improving your health. Research regarding atients under Network Care have shown over time the ability to have:

  • A greater ability to adapt to stress
  • Better ability to recover
  • Easier to implement diet and exercise programs
  • More eager to meditate

Doesn’t it make sense that the more you can affect your master control system, your Nervous System, the healthier you can be, and safeguard to the best of your ability, the BEST ways to adapt to STRESS.

 

Germ Theory – The Truth Exposed

For most of the years I have practiced chiropractic, I have heard patients in my office and friends outside of my office share conversations that go like this:

“I caught a cold from my kids.”

“My grandkids gave me the crud they got from their friends at daycare.”

“I shouldn’t come in for an adjustment. I might give this to someone.”

“I don’t want to catch what he has.”sick

These are all common, acceptable conversations that happen all the time in our society. Just because it is common, does that mean it is true? We all grew up with the notion of the “Germ Theory”, first suggested by French biologist Louis Pasteur. He discovered that microorganisms or “germs” caused disease. According to his “Germ Theory”, we “catch” bacteria, colds, viruses and they should be prevented through drugs, vaccines, and other means. We were taught to be afraid of these germs and out of fear try to “kill” them with drugs rather than generating good environments in our bodies.

Did you know that Pasteur’s theory received opposition from numerous scientists, including Antoine Béchamp, a French researcher and biologist, who also happened to be Pasteur’s rival with the exact opposite view of germs. In contrast to the idea that bacteria would enter a healthy host and create disease on their own, Béchamp proposed that living entities called microzymes created bacteria in response to host and environmental factors; this is called “Host Theory.”

In Host Theory, people do not catch germs that give them diseases. Instead disease-causing germs are actually opportunistic, thriving in people whose bodies have a weakness or imbalance internally. They are a byproduct of the disease, not THE CAUSE of the disease.  You have viruses and bacteria in you and on you all the time, every day!

I remember in chiropractic school we did throat cultures in Pathology Class. EVERYONE in class had the Strep bacteria on their culture, but NO ONE in the class had Strep throat. Why? Only when the host loses its ability to defend itself against foreign invaders, germs, will the Strep bacteria overrun your body’s Immune System.

Now that we got that out of the way, how can you change your conversation from the ones above to a more empowering one, where YOU are in control of how healthy you are? I always go back to my 5 Pillars of Health!

  1. A Healthy Nervous System – research shows that the Immune System gets its marching orders from the Nervous System. Chiropractic care improves the function of your Nervous System, which affects the function of your Immune System. Plus, stress is probably the biggest contributor to Immune System compromise.1
  2. What are you eating? A diet higher in fresh organic fruits and vegetables, lean meats like chicken, fish, and healthy fats is superior to a diet consisting of a processed foods, foods from a bag or box and sugars. 2
  3. Keep moving! – research shows that regular cardiovascular exercise improves Immune System function 3
  4. Rest – look at the times in your life where you have “gotten sick”. Were you getting the same amount of sleep as when you functioning better? Probably not. It’s no wonder that research shows a direct correlation between lack of sleep and Immune deficiency. 4
  5. Positive attitude – another no-brainer here. People who are isolated, depressed, anxious and stressed will have a more compromised Immune System. Do things for yourself to keep your attitude positive! 5

So, what do you think? Do you have the knowledge and resources to create a more empowering conversation about Germ Theory vs. Host Theory? My goal is to empower you to be in control of your amazing health. The next time you “get sick”, instead of blaming someone else for “giving” you their cold, look at what needs to change in your life from the list above. Take your power back! You deserve it.

1 http://www.chiro.org/research/ABSTRACTS/Immune.shtml

2 https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007165.htm

3 http://www.nutritionletter.tufts.edu/issues/9_5/current-articles/Healthy-Diet-Fights-Infection-by-Boosting-Immune-System_981-1.html

4 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3256323/

5 http://www.livescience.com/8158-optimism-boosts-immune-system.html

What you happen to you if YOU tried this?

If you are any kind of sports junkie, you know that Roger Federer just defeated Rafael Nadal in the finals of the Australian Open. What makes this noteworthy? For starters, Roger Federer is 35 years old in a sport dominated by early and mid 20 somethings.

Secondly, and more importantly, he took the LAST SIX MONTHS OFF to recover from back and knee injuries as well as illness. Everyone else on the Tour is practicing and improving every day, with their sights set on capturing the next event.

What’s my point here?roger

Imagine that you have taken six months off from the exceptional diet you have carved out for yourself. You let yourself go and eat Big Macs and Taco Bell for six months. What kind of shape would you be in, physically and mentally?

What if you took six months off from the amazing exercise program you have worked hard at? No running, no yoga, no weight training, no skiing. What level of fitness would you have in six months? How challenging would it be to get back to the fitness level you had before you stopped your exercise program?

How about your sleep? What if for six months you only slept for four hours a night? What would your energy look like? Would you be able to stay awake for an entire day?

Lastly, what if you took six months off from your chiropractic care? What would happen to the health of your Nervous System? What would happen to your ability to adapt to the stress of your life, both physical and emotional? What would happen to your overall function, trillions of messages every second, from all parts of your body to your brain and back again? What would happen to your ability to fight off sickness and illness? What would happen to your energy level, your mood, your life?

You see, Roger Federer has spent most of his life practicing to be the best. It’s amazing that he was able to take six months off and return a champion. For most of us, we are not Roger Federer. We need to continue to do the work. Create great habits, and live your great habits. It will pay off in the quality of your health and life.

Is an Ear Infection the Same as a Headache?

Is an ear infection the same as a headache? Upon first review, you may answer, “no.” An ear earacheinfection affects hearing, possibly balance, and ear sensitivity. A headache may affect muscular tension, vision, nausea, mental acuity, and mental stability.

Those are the differences. What about the similarities? Well, an ear infection and a headache are both attempts by your body to alert you that something is wrong. They are both warning signs that your body cannot fight off what it needs to. For an ear infection, maybe it’s a virus or bacteria invasion or an overloading of physical, emotional, or chemical stress, or all three. For the headache, maybe it’s a virus or bacteria invasion or an overloading of physical, emotional, or chemical stress, or all three.

What’s the plan of action? For the ear infection, an antibiotic is most frequently used to treat the symptoms. For the headache, aspirin, Tylenol, or a stronger narcotic depending on the severity, Headache-Woman-Grimaceand degree of management achieved.

If you choose to treat with the above options, what is your desired goal? Most likely, it’s to reduce your symptoms, to mask the problem, to convince your body that everything is ok, that the coast is clear. Let’s say the treating options achieved your goal of to reducing your symptoms. What does that tell you? If you had a tooth ache, and you used medication to relieve your pain, are you convinced the problem has been eliminated?

Last week, a patient of mine brought her 20 month old son to see me because he had been having ear infections for several months. The antibiotics were not working, and he continued to get more ear infections when the previous ones had cleared up. I explained that an ear infection is nothing different than a headache or low back pain; it’s just his body doing a really good job of sounding the fire alarm. What’s the purpose of sounding the fire alarm? To let Mama know that his body cannot successfully adapt to the stress he has experienced. What could some of those stresses be? Well, a developing toddler learns to stand and, while practicing, falls over a 100 times. Where do they fall? On their sacrum, commonly called in “toddler talk” your bum! The sacrum, or bum, contains the GREATEST CONCENTRATION of nerve supply in your body. Do you think falling on that same spot over 100 times can create a subluxation, or nerve interference? Is it possible that the subluxation(s) that the young toddler is creating can make it harder for his Immune System and Nervous System to successfully adapt to all the bacteria and virus he is exposed to? Once his Immune and Nervous System are compromised, is it possible that his body cannot heal itself as good as it could without subluxation? Once his body is subluxated, could it be that the only way his body can send out a warning signal is through an Ear Infection?

Whether it’s an ear infection, or headache, or digestive problem, or low energy, or neck pain, or sleeping problems, or anxiety, or depression, the logic does not change. A Nervous System that cannot successfully adapt to its environment and stress will FUNCTION at a less than optimal level. It functions at this level due to subluxations that you cannot correct. Your body cannot heal itself at the level that needs to take place. The longer your body cannot heal effectively, the more inclined it is to send you WARNING SIGNALS. The warning signals are the ear infection, headaches, digestive problems, low energy, sleeping problems, anxiety, or depression. Round and round we go, the logic never changes.

How do you get off the Merry-Go-Round? Invest in the BEST functioning Nervous System you can. Develop the tools to successfully adapt to all stresses that life throws at you. When that happens, you will have a great understanding of why an ear infection and a headache are alike and how they are different.

What am I going to “catch” this year?

There has been so much talk this month about people getting the flu, kids insickwoman
masses being home, sick from school, and large groups of people throughout Colorado and neighboring states being affected by a “mysterious virus”, human enterovirus 68. (1)

I thought this would be a good time to take a step back and write about why this happens, and how you can ensure that you are staying as healthy as possible. Many people think the answer comes in a bottle, or a shot, or in special foods you eat. It’s really much simpler than that.

Let’s start with your Nervous System, that IS why you’re here receiving care, isn’t it? Your Nervous System controls EVERYTHING that happens in that wonderful, marvelous body of yours. Every movement, motion, emotion, function, and thought is controlled by your Nervous System. Now, what about your Immune System? Well, your Nervous System tells your Immune System to “kill those bad guys”, and your Immune System does its job. (2)

Now, what happens if your Nervous System is not functioning at 100%, meaning you have SUBLUXATIONS? Then, it would make sense that your Immune System would not work at 100%, and if your Immune System is not working at 100%, your chances of “getting sick” or “getting a virus” or “getting the flu” will increase.

When I was at chiropractic school, and we were in Histology Lab, we were doing throat cultures in class. EVERYONE had the strep virus in their throat, but yet NO ONE had strep throat! Why was that? Because everyone’s IMMUNE SYSTEM was working at a high enough level so that the strep virus did not sense an opportunity to create a mass invasion. Think about it… you and I have all these bacteria and viruses ALIVE in our bodies, but yet we are not constantly sick. You need to THANK your Nervous System and Immune System for a job well done in keeping you well. An easy way to look at it is that you have an entire defense team ready to attack foreign invaders. When your immunity is low, or the foreign invaders sense your defenses are down, they move in, in mass!

Getting back to how we are conditioned to reach for an easy answer when there is a hint of virus or flu in the news, here are your FAILSAFE measures to ensure you stay as healthy as possible and avoid being one of those who “get sick”.

  • Continue to receive chiropractic care! Not only will your Nervous System continue to work better, but your Immune System as well.
  • Get plenty of rest – If you are run down energetically, look at your sleep. Are you getting 6 hours, but need 8? Sleep is your body’s opportunity to recharge your batteries. Sooner or later, your body is going to let you know it has won.
  • Evaluate your diet – lots of processed foods, sodas, caffeine, and food from a box or bag? They’re all acidic, which toxifies your blood, and therefore every cell of your body. Focus on greens, fruits, seed and nuts, and PLENTY of water, and NOT from the tap.
  • Ease on down the road – Do you go, go, go, and then crash and burn? Can’t take your eyes off the computer screen before bed? Well, that doesn’t work. Research shows you need to transition off the blue light, and settle into a gentler rhythm. (3)
  • Anti bacterial soap? – Forget it! You have this amazing defense team on your side, your antibodies. They get stronger every time they go into battle. When you use antibacterial soap, you are telling your defense team they are not needed, you are telling them to take a nap. But when they are napping, that’s when the foreign invaders attack, and your defense team will be lazy and unresponsive. Let you defense team stay lean and mean. They are working all the time, without you knowing it, killing ALL types of germs, bacteria, virus, and even STREP! Face it, you NEED to be exposed to all kinds of junk to keep your Immune System working at its peak potential.

Follow these steps towards greater health, and let me know how you’re doing. I am confident you will rise above the fear and uncertainty of bacteria, viruses, and flus. I am your greatest cheerleader, and remember, I’m always cheering for you.

1.http://abcnews.go.com/Health/unidentified-respiratory-virus-hit-kids-country/story?id=25334106

2. http://www.answers.com/Q/How_does_the_nervous_system_and_the_immune_system_work_together

3. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/10/really-using-a-computer-before-bed-can-disrupt-sleep/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0