Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Burned Out? Stress May be Weakening Your Adrenal Glands!

If you are overworked, overstressed, or simply feel overwhelmed, you may be setting yourself up for problems. Chronic stress will weaken your adrenal glands and can seriously compromise your body's ability to reenergize. Known as adrenal fatigue, this energy thief seems to be affecting more and more Americans. That’s one reason why I am seeing an uptick in patients with nondescript ailments or a variety of unrelated health problems that range from insomnia to muscle pain to low blood sugar.

The adrenal glands secrete cortisol and adrenaline, hormones that kick into high gear during moments of intense anxiety or physical strain. If stress has become your status quo, constant cortisol and adrenaline secretion may deplete your adrenal glands and wipe out your energy reserves.

Although stress affects everyone in different ways, I’ve found that most people can endure two to five years of a high-pressure lifestyle before reaching adrenal fatigue. The amount of time it takes to recover from adrenal insufficiency depends on how depleted you are, but it can be anywhere from months to years. The good news: Simple tweaks to your self-care regimen can work wonders in boosting your adrenal health.
Vitamins C and B5 are particularly important to adrenal health. Increase your vitamin C intake by taking 1,000 to 4,000 mg. of supplemental C daily...Read More.
Functional Medicine Physician
Boca Raton, FL

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Anti-inflammatory supplements lower inflammation in a study of healthy, overweight men

It’s long been thought that a primary contributor to disease is the presence of low-grade chronic inflammation, especially in individuals who are overweight. What too many physicians fail to understand is that unrecognized and untreated silent, systemic, low-grade inflammation is the root cause of all chronic degenerative illness...whether it be heart disease, obesity and diabetes, dementia or cancer.

Netherlands scientists recently performed a study of overweight (but otherwise healthy) men to see if the use of certain supplements might lessen inflammation and, therefore, lessen the potential to develop diseases. The researchers treated the test subjects with only a handful of common nutrients known for their anti inflammatory effect...with good results. The supplements included green tea extract, Vitamins E and C, Resveratrol, Omega 3 fatty acids and tomato extract.

In the study, the scientists used C-reactive protein as an inflammatory marker (interleukin 6 is another). A CRP test is a common blood analysis here in the US used to reveal the level of inflammation in an individual’s body.

The men were split into 2 groups, one group receiving a placebo and the other receiving the supplements for a period of 5 weeks. Blood draws and urine samples were taken to measure nflammatory and oxidative stress defense levels along with 120 plasma proteins, 274 lipids, free fatty acids, and polar compounds, and the transcriptomes of peripheral blood cells and fatty tissues.

The results of the study were not as clear-cut as hoped. Although the plasma adiponectin concentrations increased by 7%, showing improvement (low plasma adiponectin levels are found in obese individuals and predict the development of type 2 diabetes) but C-reactive protein levels did not change—in other words, the levels of inflammation remained constant. Nevertheless, some slight changes were detected such as decreased inflammation of fatty tissue, improved endothelial function, affected oxidative stress, and increased liver fatty acid oxidation, all positive indicators that the supplements were improving the individual’s levels of inflammation.

This study leads researchers to believe that the use of certain dietary supplements can decrease inflammatory processes. If this is the case, it shows great promise for a non-drug treatment that can be started with many individuals right now.

The list of things which cause chronic inflammation and, therefore, chronic disease is short and relatively easy to modify or rid yourself of. They include:

  • Poor food choices such as refined white sugar and corn syrup, flour and rice, processed foods with saturated and trans fats;
  • Stress
  • Lack of exercise
  • Chronic or hidden infections: viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi
  • Hidden environmental or food allergies
  • Heavy metal or pesticide or mold toxicities

An anti-inflammatory lifestyle is easier to follow than you might think, but you have to be the one to lead it, too.

The study can be found by following this link.

Feel free to send me a health question!

To your health,
Dr. David Blyweiss

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Effect of Low Hormones on your Emotions

Slowly and steadily our hormone levels begin to decline as we age, beginning in our late 20’s to early 30’s. This may cause vague or mild symptoms in some. At some point, more significant and different symptoms develop including emotional lability, anxiety, depression, irritability and moodiness. This is the beginning of the unfortunate years-to-decades-long period of wildly fluctuating hormones known as perimenopause. It is the fluctuation of hormone coupled with the decline that is responsible for these symptoms. It is the same type of imbalance that is responsible for the same set of symptoms in many with PMS.

The medical mainstream rarely recognizes these symptoms as being due to hormonal decline or imbalance and frequently pushes anti-depressants as the answer. They are not! Simple hormone replacement and rebalancing will usually take care of the problem and return one to their “pre-menopausal” state of physical and mental health.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Perimeopause Symptoms at 31?

The question I seem to be getting more and more these days is, “I am only 31, can my symptoms really be caused by perimenopause?" My answer is usually YES! It is possible that a woman can begin going through the early stages of menopause at such a young age.

Perimenopause is generally believed to encompass a brief period of time in a woman’s life as she ceases menstruating and goes through hormonal change leading to hot flashes and night sweats. This could not be further from reality. Hot flashes and night sweats are the hallmark symptoms of Perimenopause and they are caused by FLUCTUATING hormone levels. This fluctuation of hormones can last years to decades! Once the hormones bottom out these symptoms always disappear. Unfortunately, the other perimenopausal symptoms such as lack of energy, fatigue, decreasing libido, vaginal dryness, and all the others will persist forever.

The solution is simple. No matter where a woman is on the compendium from “Normal” to “Menopause”, return her hormonally and physiologically to pre-menopausal or “Normal” levels and ALL symptoms will disappear. And it is that simple – we do it everyday!

See our bioidentical hormone information for more details on treating perimenopause and menopause symptoms.