How the Nutrient in Broccoli Sprouts Can Change Genes To Protect Against Cancer

All of us know broccoli when we see it but how many of us know what broccoli sprouts are? I know I didn’t grow up eating them and have been surprised to find out the amazing health benefits of this little but powerful veggie. And this isn’t the only veggie that has the magic….

 

Why Should I Care About Sulforaphane?

I know, I know, why should you care about sulforaphane? Well, it just so happens that it is VITAL. Some of its most important jobs are enhancing brain function, promoting healthy weight, autism, reducing the risk of cancer, neurological diseases, diabetes, and heart disease. Sulforaphane is an organosulfate that provides valuable sulfur that is the building block of so many reactions in our body. Sulforaphane is antioxidant, antimicrobial, anticancer, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective. Lots of great reasons to understand this powerful compound!

Dr. Thomas W Kensler described it as “the most potent naturally occurring inducer of Nrf2 signaling.”

What sulforaphane does is activate and up regulate certain genetic pathways or transcription factors, like Nrf2. Nrf2 is a transcription factor that affects what genes are turned on or off. When I began to see this published in medical journals, I was really impressed. Everyone is beginning to see how nutrition CAN target genes (better known as nutrigenomics) and can therefore, prevent against common killers like cancer. In fact, sulforaphane has been found to be effective against several types of cancer! More and more evidence shows that it is also acts against cancer on several levels, from development to progression. In a study published in Cancer Therapy in May 2010, sulforaphane was found to inhibit breast cancer stem cells. Not even chemotherapy can inhibit cancerous stem cells.

Sulforaphane has shown a potential therapeutic role for protection of cells from DNA damage. It also showed that it could induce modulation of the cell, meaning death if the cell was diseased or old, or protection against cancer and proliferation of cancer cells. In fact, one study out of Harvard demonstrated signifiant improvement in autistic children treated with sulforaphane. They showed an improvement in social interaction, abnormal behavior, and verbal communication.

As previously mentioned, sulforaphane helps to activate Nrf2. It has been shown to be protective against cancer and can modify genes associated with chemoprevention. It does this by ramping up cellular defense mechanisms and detoxification pathways. Basically this little Nrf2 factor turns on genes that activate our cellular military. Their job is to go out and patrol our tissues, blood, organs and each cell to make sure everything is running smoothly with no mutiny anywhere in the body.

Where Do I Get Sulforaphane?

Broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage are all rich in what is known as sulforaphane. In fact, all cruciferous vegetables contain sulforaphane! But it doesn’t just happen to occur naturally in plants.

Sulforaphane is only created when the plant is damaged as a stress mechanism. An enzyme called myrosinase is released that then reacts with another compound called glucoraphanin. The result is sulforaphane. You may be wondering how this is a defense mechanism for the plant? Well sulforaphane is actually toxic in high doses, even in humans, especially if large quantities of cruciferous vegetables are eaten raw. So  chewing or chopping up the vegetables trigger them to release sulforaphane.

Can I Eat Cruciferous Vegetables If I Have Thyroid Dysfunction?

Trust me when I say that cruciferous vegetables do not CAUSE thyroid dysfunction. In small and normal quantities, sulforaphane creates a hormetic effect. Remember the poison is in the dose in the natural world concerning herbs, so called poisons and foods. Sometimes, as in the case of sulforaphane, we can gain beneficial effects from something that would be toxic in higher doses. Everything in moderation!

In high doses or if cruciferous veggies are eaten predominantly raw in someone who is susceptible to thyroid disease, goitrins can form in the body. These goitrins interfere with the production of normal thyroid hormones, leading to hypothyroidism. The trade off with this is that cooking the cruciferous veggies past 138 degrees Fahrenheit deactivated the enzyme that helps to make sulforaphane. So the best way to get a satisfactory dose is by eating it raw in small amounts or by eating broccoli sprouts.

One thing you can do to prevent any negative effects from goitrins is to take adequate doses of iodine and selenium. Plus sulforaphane is pretty powerful-you only have to eat 3-5 servings per week to see the anticancer benefits! In fact, one study found that “dose” reduced the cancer risk by 30-40%.

The Highest Dose of Sulforaphane

Now that you know about sulforaphane, you may be wondering what the best source is and how much you need to reap the wonderful benefits! The highest dose is found in vegetables that are more immature and the content actually weans as the plants mature. Thats why young broccoli sprouts have a much higher content than just regular broccoli. They contain 10-100 times the level of glucoraphanin and sulforaphane. This little vegetable is really the panacea of healing.

There are supplements with sulforaphane and broccoli sprouts, but I always believe if you can get the nutrition from food, or the most natural way possible, it is much more bioavailable or absorbable. Try adding broccoli sprouts to your salad or even smoothie every week. Remember you only need 3-5 servings a week to ensure you’re getting the detox, anticancer and immune benefits. Don’t forget to speak with your trusted healthcare professional if you have a thyroid disorder prior to gobbling up too many cruciferous vegetables!

Way to be your own best doctor!

Much love

Dr Jess

 

 

Exposure of primary mouse hepatocytes to sulforaphane resulted in activation of Nrf2 and significant elevation of protein expressions responsible for excretion of arsenic into extracellular space. SFN has the ability to potentially excrete heavy metals like arsenic.

 

 

 

REFERENCES:

  1. www.sciencedirect.com/science/articles/pii/s0014579306002316
  2. www.drperlmutter.com/good-news-nrf2/
  3. www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080//10408398.2016.1259983?journalcode=bfsn20
  4. Sulforaphane and other Nutrigenomics Nrf2 Activators: Can the Clinician’s Expectation Be Matched by the Reality? www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/26881038/

How PTSD and Early Emotional Trauma Can Wreck Digestion (plus the tricks that can help correct it)

Stress Affects the Body More than Medicine is Willing to Admit

I went to a Integrative Conference on Anxiety and Depression this past week and was blown away by the amount of information given to us on genetic mutations, stress and emotional factors that play a HUGE role in how we interact and feel about the world. If only allopathic medicine would jump on board, then healthcare in this country could be completely revitalized.

Many healthcare professionals say to me that they don’t believe food or chronic stress can play such a vital role in our health because there are no concrete scientific or peer reviewed studies on this topic. To which I say two words. Takosubo cardiomyopathy. This is a physical heart condition brought about by intense and deep heartbreak. Have you ever heard of an elderly couple that has been together for decades and when one dies, the other passes away shortly thereafter? This is often due to Broken Heart syndrome, or Takosubo cardiomyopathy. The typical scenario is a mother who loses a child or a husband that unexpectedly loses his wife. Takosubo cardiomyopathy is named for the pot in Japan that resembles how the heart pathologically balloons out during this stressful time. All because of heartache, these patients can go into overt heart failure or even sustain a heart attack. Most of them recover, but many of them have permanent disabilities all due to stress or emotional trauma.

One of the main topics that was discussed at the conference was how stress can physiologically disrupt digestion. We all know that when we have to give a public speech, we can get an upset stomach. This is because the vagus nerve connects our guts to our brains. If we are anxious, signals are sent from the brain down the vagus nerve to the gut, where the gut can “feel” those anxious feelings as well. Multiple studies have recently shown that mood disorders as well as chronic brain inflammation can affect the gut. Many of the emotions, cravings and urges that we experience are now being linked to the colonies of bacteria in our guts.

So what does this mean for people who are chronically stressed, whether physically or emotionally? A lot actually. Lets take for example, a Vietnam veteran. These are patients who often have had serious mental trauma because of what they witnessed overseas. They are often plagued by an anxious condition called PTSD, or post traumatic stress disorder, which involves vivid flashbacks, nightmares, and unbearable anxiety that can lead to irritability. All of these symptoms are pointing at emotional trauma that is “stuck” or resides inside the body. And this doesn’t just include PTSD; many people who suffer from anxiety or panic attacks have their sympathetic nervous system in overdrive.

We are constantly stressed, rushed, worried about deadlines or trying to please other people, we do damage to our parasympathetic nervous system, the housekeeping system responsible for digestion. 40% of Americans eat breakfast in the car! This is not the ideal situation for proper digestion, absorption and assimilation of nutrients. The sympathetic nervous system is the “flight or fight” mode of operation and opposes the parasympathetic nervous system. In this state, the brain perceives that there is trouble or danger. Blood sugar, blood pressure and heart rate all increase in preparation for the impending threat (whether real or imagined). This is not a good time to eat and expect the body to perform at peak function. So what exactly happens with digestion when you are in “flight or fight” sympathetic mode?

The Importance of Stomach Acid 

The body nearly shuts down digestive capacity during periods of stress. Production of digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid is blocked. Why is acid in your gut so vital? Well, the stomach should have an acidic pH of around 2-3 when food is present. When we are hungry, smell food, and properly chew our food, the body has time to produce hydrochloric acid from parietal cells that reside in the gut lining. This acid is like a barrier and protects us from invasion from bacteria, parasites, viruses and other pathogens that cannot live in such a hostile, acidic environment. The gut is supposed to be acidic!

The hydrochloric acid also activates the production of digestive enzymes, integral to proper digestion and absorption. These enzymes break down fats and proteins so the body can easily use them. If these proteins and fats do not properly get digested, they become putrefied. Yes, the food in your gut can ferment or begin to rot, causing waste products to become toxic. Without the absorption and assimilation of these nutrients, your body doesn’t get essential amino acids and other building blocks needed to make energy, repair DNA and keep you functioning at peak performance. As you can see, hydrochloric acid and digestive enzymes triggered by that acid, are imperative.

Not only that, but being stressed stops digestion and acid production, so food sits in the gut longer, waiting to be digested. This can lead to bloating and eventual putrefaction of the food. Gas is created when the food is putrified, which expresses itself as burping, stomach gurgling, and gas. Putrefaction also causes organic acids to form from the fermentation, and this feels like acid reflux. Most people will readily reach for antacids, but as you can see, this is only compounding the problem. Hopefully, you can now see how detrimental long term use of antacids and proton pump inhibitors like Prilosec can be on the immune system in the gut. This is basically blocking absorption of food and worsening the problem of low stomach acid. We all think that acid reflux is caused by high stomach acid, but this is simply not true. Hypochlorhydria, or low stomach acid can produce the same symptoms due to the slowing of digestion and putrefaction.

How to Help Your Digestion by Destressing

People who have had childhood trauma, PTSD, high stress jobs or chronic anxiety/panic attacks, have a near constant state of flight or fight. They are at high risk for digestive issues like bloating, gas, abdominal pain, malabsorption, acid reflux and inflammation. This is not only bad for digestion, but all housekeeping activities in the body, including sleep, meditation, and deep breathing. When the sympathetic nervous system is in overdrive, the parasympathetic system is pushed aside.

How do we activate the parasympathetic nervous system which can help calm us and encourage proper digestion? The key is the vagus nerve that connects the brain to the gut. It is activated by:

  1. Deep belly breathing or pranayama breathing-you can slightly constrict the back of your throat until you hear an ocean like breathing. Make sure you take full breaths into your belly. Most patients with severe anxiety, trauma or PTSD only breathe into the top third of their lungs. This one exercise can drastically change thought patterns by activating the parasympathetic nervous system through the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve then sends these calming signals back up to the brain where we are told to relax.
  2. Preparing and Blessing your Meals-this may sound a bit out there to some, but appreciation and blessing of the food and its nutritious content sends a mindful message to our bodies. Ancient cultures and religious texts have long encouraged blessings or grace prior to eating. Could there have been an actual emotional purpose to this? The ideal circumstance prior to indulging would be picking your own home grown food from the garden, seeing the colors, picking it with your own hands, smelling it and spending time preparing it. Feeling gratitude and appreciation and sending this energy to the food has been shown in studies to encourage better digestion. You then sit amongst friends and family, full of calm happiness prior to eating. Although our lives today do not often permit this type of lifestyle, being mindful only takes a moment. Make healthy choices, take a deep breath prior to eating, stare at the food and appreciate it. Send good energy and blessings to the life giving nutrients you are about to enjoy. Pausing prior to devouring sends signals to your digestive system to begin to start manufacturing digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid. This makes a huge difference!
  3. Don’t Eat Until You Feel Calm and Safe-take a moment to find a place out in nature or in silence where you can center yourself prior to eating. Do not eat while in a car, in front of a tv, or people who upset you. Do not relish in negative thoughts or anger while eating. Deep belly breathing and happy thoughts!
  4. If All Else Fails, take a Digestive Enzyme with Betaine HCL-this is my last recommendation for digestion as I do feel our bodies can heal if given the correct “recipe,” made for us. If you feel anxious and panicky most days, I encourage you to look into bioneurofeedback to retrain the brain, EMDR work to reset, or mindful mediation practices. Apple cider vinegar or lukewarm lemon water also help to naturally reset the gut pH to a healthy level that will activate your now natural digestive enzymes. If all else fails, then try a good digestive enzyme pill with each meal. Be sure it contains betaine HCL. HCL stands for hydrochloric acid and will help digest the food by exogenously replacing the acid needed. Before going out and buying some, ensure that you do not have an ulcer, are on steroids which erode the gut lining, or have Barretts esophagus. In these cases, HCL replacement is not advised.

I know you can be your own best doctor!

Much Love,

Dr Jess

Recovery Methods for a Brain with Aluminum and Glyphosate Exposure

Please see my previous post on the importance of understanding the pathophysiology of Glyphosate, better known as Monsanto’s RoundUp. This pesticide which has far reaching effects, has been shown to bind up aluminum and bypass the gut barrier, decimating all  immunity and amino acids made by our beneficial gut bacteria.

By popular demand, I will be discussing how to detoxify from aluminum and pesticide exposure. Together, heavy metals like aluminum and Glyphosate have synergistically devastating effects. My previous blog post showed that pesticides provide an easy passage to aluminum where the bloodstream filters it quickly through the brain and the kidneys. The issue with this is that the pineal gland, which sits inside the optic chiasma in the brain, is not protected by the blood brain barrier and gets the brunt of unfiltered blood. If it is exposed to aluminum and/or pesticides, it is at a higher risk to accumulate these toxic substances. The repercussions of this are thought to be far reaching but have not been substantially researched.

Glyphosate

Glyphosate, or RoundUp, is the best selling pesticide in history since going to market in 1974. Nearly 90% of all corn, soy and cotton are aerially sprayed with this toxic pesticide. A recent study showed Glyphosate was found 700 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency’s legal limit in the breast milk of mothers. Another study found that Americans have ten times more Glyphosate in their urine than their European counterparts. Seeing as how recent studies have shown the devastating effects of Glyphosate on our gut bacteria, which helps to sustain mood, immunity, and overall wellbeing, all of this is quite concerning.

Aluminum

Specifically, Dr Seneff’s work has shown how aluminum works with Glyphosate to avoid our body’s defenses as it enters the body. Heavy metals in general have known negative effects on the body. Both mercury and aluminum are highly neurotoxic and can accumulate in the brain. Multiple studies have shown a direct link to aluminum toxicity and Alzheimers. Now Dr Seneff’s work has shown correlation to aluminum and pineal gland calcification, as nearly all Alzheimers patients have a calcified pineal gland. Both mercury and aluminum have vague toxic profiles including emotional instability and lability, lethargy, depression, anxiety and attention problems. Aluminum alone causes flatulence, headaches, colic, dryness of the skin, tendency to come down with colds/flus, and heartburn.

An average adult in the United States eats about 7–9 mg of aluminum per day in their food. Approximately 95% of an aluminum load becomes bound to transferrin and albumin intravascularly and is then eliminated via the kidneys. In healthy subjects, only 0.3% of orally administered aluminum is absorbed via the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, however, this statistic is not taking into account that the bioavailability becomes much higher when bound to Glyphosate.  Only when the GI barrier is bypassed, such as by intravenous infusion (think vaccines), when bound to pesticides, or if the kidneys are diseased, does aluminum have the potential to accumulate. As an example, with intravenously infused aluminum, 40% is retained in adults and up to 75% is retained in babies.

A calcified pineal gland is also linked to high fluoride consumption, which is found added to tap water, medications and toothpaste.

For more information, please revisit my blog post concerning the synergistic effects of Glyphosate and aluminum.

How To Detox From Heavy Metals and Glyphosate

I make an excellent heavy metal detox which you can check out in the Dr Jess store, but for now, lets investigate what you can do to actively clear your pineal gland and the gut of these toxic substances.

  1. Eat organic-One Swedish study showed a family who tested positive for glyphosate at the beginning of the study. They all ate organic for the next three weeks and their urinary excretion of Glyphosate dropped significantly. Avoiding GMO food, which has a considerably higher amount of pesticide used on it, avoiding soy, corn and wheat, as well as educating yourself on foods that help to eliminate these toxins by providing necessary cofactors and nutrients.
  2. Eat sulfur rich foods-sulfur is one of the nutrients disrupted by Glyphosate and proven by the Seneff study. This includes brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, legumes, bok chop, garlic, cauliflower, kale, radish and watercress. The high sulfur content of these foods provide necessary cofactors to make glutathione, the master antioxidant of the body. It is also used in step one and two detoxification in the liver.
  3. Take probiotics-since glyphosate and heavy metals can help decimate the beneficial bacteria in the gut, it makes sense that exogenously replacing these colonies with probiotics would help to rid the body of toxins. Our gut bacteria are life and provide necessary amino acids, building blocks and cofactors for immunity and stable moods, If our guts are not happy, then our brains are likely unhappy too.
  4. Silica-Research published in 2013 showed that drinking up to one liter of a silicon-rich mineral water daily for 12 weeks effectively excreted aluminum via the urine, without detrimental effects on essential metals such as iron and copper. According to the authors: “We have provided preliminary evidence that over 12 weeks of silicon-rich mineral water therapy the body burden of aluminum fell in individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and, concomitantly, cognitive performance showed clinically relevant improvements in at least 3 out of 15 individuals.” Think Fiji water.
  5. Melatonin: Research shows that melatonin has a metal binding role and is a useful supplement in the treatment of neurological disorders in which oxidative stress is involved, which includes Alzheimer’s. Melatonin can travel freely across all cellular barriers, facilitating the removal of toxic metals such as aluminum. It also appears to suppress the oxidative activity of aluminum in your brain. Melatonin is also one of the hormones that is blocked by Glyphosate exposure, so exogenous support is quite beneficial to rid yourself of this toxin. New research shows melatonin also has anti cancer properties.
  6. Raise your Glutathione- Your body synthesizes this master antioxidant from three amino acids: “cysteine, glutamate, and glycine. Raw fruits and vegetables, particularly avocado, asparagus, grapefruit, strawberries, orange, tomato, cantaloupe, broccoli, okra, peach, zucchini, and spinach are rich in the precursors glutamate and glycine. Dietary sources of cysteine include eggs, meat, red peppers, garlic, onions, Brussels sprouts,  and wheat germ.” Other helpful treatments for improved glutathione metabolism are exercise and the proper vitamin D levels. (I like my patents around 50).
  7. Chlorella-this ancient blue green algae contains nearly all essential amino acids and is jam packed with protein. It not only works in unison with cilantro, but can remove the heavy metals from the body through urinary excretion.
  8. Cilantro-Cilantro works well with chlorella to chelate, or bind, up heavy metals to excrete them. The issue with cilantro alone is that although it chelates heavy metals, it does not remove them in the urine. This means they can recirculate to deposit elsewhere in the body. This is why I recommend that you always take cilantro with chlorella as chlorella does remove the metals through kidney excretion. In one study, in Japan in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, researchers found that cilantro was able to chelate aluminum. “After the 25-day trial period, the mice were checked for lead. The results showed that both the cilantro and the DMSA had “significantly decreased lead deposition in the femur and severe lead-induced injury in the kidneys.” Moreover, the cilantro increased the urinary excretion of delta-aminolevulinic acid (ALA), which is known to increase with lead intake.”
  9. Iodine/Kelp-iodine dispels fluoride and bromide as well as heavy metals from the body. Iodine deficiency has come into question for a number of cancers including breast, thyroid and prostate cancer.
  10. Avoiding fluoride/Buy a water filter-a Berkley runs around $200-300 and you can order fluoride filters specifically to remove this toxic halide from your water supply. Check them out at www.berkey.com. This absolutely helps heal the pineal gland.
  11. Third Eye Meditation-this meditation involves staring up at the point in between the eyes with your eyes closed. This can send awareness and blood supply to the area.
  12. Epsom salt baths-provide detox baths for heavy metals. Magnesium stores are depleted during heavy metal toxicity and detox. The body uses magnesium in over 300 processes in the body and heavy metal detox is one of them! Epsom salt is magnesium sulfate and sitting in a bath for approximately 30 minutes is a great way to replenish these stores.
  13. MSM supplementation-MSM is a form of sulfur which acts on cell membranes and can help to replenish sulfur stores that are disrupted by Glyphosate exposure. It has also been known to help mercury toxicity.
  14. N-acetyl L-cysteine (NAC) may also be useful. NAC is the rate-limiting nutrient for the formation of the master antioxidant glutathione. So replacing these stores can help boost glutathione levels in the body.
  15. Curcumin- Research suggests that curcumin has a protective effect against aluminum-induced damage by modulating the extent of oxidative stress. Studies have shown that curcumin can help improve memory in Alzheimer’s patients. There are some contraindications that curcumin is not recommended if you have biliary tract obstruction (as it stimulates bile secretion), gallstones, or on a blood thinner. (curcumin is a natural blood thinner).
  16. Other supplements that may help include: Gotu kola, boron, coconut oil, beets, apple cider vinegar, ginseng, bentonite clay (avoid contamination with heavy metals), milk thistle, dandelion root and burdock root.
  17. CHELATION-This is the most effective way to remove all heavy metals. It can bind up other beneficial nutrients that you wouldn’t necessarily want removed. Chelation can also be hard on the kidneys. However, I have witnessed amazing results with IV chelation with EDTA, DMSO or DMPS concerning heavy metal toxicity and heart disease.

REFERENCES:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11535365
  2. Séralini G-E, Clair E, Mesnage R, Gress S, Defarge N, 1, Malatesta M, Hennequin D, Spiroux de Vendômois J. Republished study: long-term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Environmental Sciences Europe 2014, 26:14.
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1130580/
  4. [2] Wolff J (1964) Transport of iodide and other anions in the thyroid gland. Physiol Rev 44:45-90

Monsanto’s Round Up and Aluminum Now Linked to Autism, Alzheimers, Gut Dysbiosis and Pineal Gland Calcification: An Important Article Review

This is, in my opinion, by far the most important blog post I’ll ever write. I wish I could disseminate this information virally on the web so that every doubter could read this groundbreaking information.

This blog is based on an extremely important research article written by Dr Stephanie Seneff of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and published in 2015 in Agricultural Sciences (it’s linked below for any of you smarties who’d like to read it on your own) and absolutely blew my mind.

I literally couldn’t NOT write about this.

WHAT IS GLYPHOSATE?

Glyphosate, better known through its popular formation, as RoundUp Ready, is Monsanto’s premier pesticide/herbicide that has increased greatly in use since the early 2000s. It has not been well studied. As glyphosate usage has increased, so has the adoption of genetically engineered crops such as corn, soy and cotton that have been designed to withstand pesticides. Epidemiological data readily available on the web from US government sources indicate a remarkably strong correlation between glyphosate application to corn and soy and multiple neurological disorders, as will be shown via graphs taken directly from the study I am referencing. See below courtesy of this wonderfully conducted study.

All graphs courtesy of http://file.scirp.org/Html/5-3000951_53106.htm

Round Up’s main ingredient is glyphosate, which works synergistically with aluminum, which is often percent in certain foods, water, and vaccines, to induce neurological damage. If you ask Monsanto, they will tell you that in vivo studies showed Round Up to be nontoxic to animals. However, there are two large problems with this assumption. Firstly, the studies were too short as they were only performed for 3 months on average. Secondly these absolutely skewed studies were only performed using pure glyphosate but left out the combination of adjuvants/fillers that have always been contained in the herbicide that is sold on shelves. These adjuvants include polyethoxylated alkylamines (POEAs), which is known to be extremely toxic on its own and can synergistically increase the toxicity of Glyphosate by 125 fold! These authors wrote ([39] Abstract, p. 1): “Despite its reputation, Roundup was by far the most toxic among the herbicides and insecticides tested”. Moreover, Monsanto claims that Glyphosate is not harmful to humans as it disrupts the Shikimate pathway that is present in plants but not in animal cells. This argument overlooks the fact that our gut bacteria also have the shikimate pathway and they use it to make essential nutrients that our cells cannot make! This includes many amino acids, which have been found to be deficient in Alzheimers and Autism cases.

One important study that echoed these results was performed by the researcher, Seralini. Sadly, it was published and then retracted from the journal. It showed rats fed GM corn and soy over their entire lifetime developed mammary tumors, liver and kidney malfunctions. The controversy stemmed from the study sample size and other fraudulent allegations about how the research was set up. However, if you know the power and political pull that Monsanto has, you would question the legitimacy of these claims. Fortunately, the same study has now been republished by another journal.

THE GUT-BRAIN CONNECTION 

Studies are now linking glyphosate alone to disrupted gut bacteria. This matters because a healthy gut micro biome with species like lactobacillus or bacteroides works in unison and harmony with our bodies. However, if our gut permeability is increased, (the membrane becomes leaky, letting things pass through our defenses and into the bloodstream) then this is when we see a rise in chronic conditions like eczema, psoriasis, anxiety, depression, autoimmune conditions and neurologic problems like autism and dementia. Our gut membrane becomes permeable due to an imbalance of pathogenic bacteria or parasites that work against our body’s digestive functions. For example, eating a diet high in sugar/processed carbs feeds pathogenic bacteria like Bacteroides and Firmicutes, which has been shown to alter the natural pH of the gut. This is vital because an acidic pH is what triggers the release of digestive enzymes. Without these enzymes, we don’t properly break down food for absorption. This leads to a bunch of humans that are nutritionally deprived of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that run every process in our bodies.

What connects the gut, or second brain, to the actual brain is the vagus nerve. The gut speaks more to the brain than the brain speaks to the gut. The gut, or should I say the bacteria that make up our gut, decide what cravings we endure, whether we feel happy or sad, how quickly we can gain or lose weight, and how efficiently our immune systems work. Why? Because 80% of our immune cells are contained in gastrointestinal associated lymphatic tissue (GALT) and 90% of our serotonin receptors are inside our intestines! It all begins in the gut! What we now know is that the neuroendocrine system, brain and gut all have a “chemical language” that is not fully understood by modern science. When the gut is disrupted, we see issues with immunity, sleep patterns, digestion, and mood.

So how does Glyphosate and aluminum in Round Up affect neurologic conditions? Well I’ve alluded to it when I described the gut-brain connection via the vagus nerve. But there is another very important organ that is connected to neurologic conditions like Alzheimers, Parkinsons, autism, schizophrenia, anxiety and depression. It is linked to spirituality, yoga and meditation and ancient cultures around the world refer to it as the “third eye.” It is the pineal gland.

THE MAGICAL, BUT POORLY UNDERSTOOD PINEAL GLAND

Sleep is regulated by melatonin. Many of you may have heard of melatonin as it’s now marketed as a popular natural supplement for sleep problems. It is released by the pineal gland at night. The pineal gland is a small pine cone shaped organ that sits behind the optic chiasma. It is highly perfused with blood, second only to the kidney. This is interesting to me that such a small gland would need such a high amount of blood flow. We have long associated the pineal gland with sleep wake, or circadian rhythm cycles, but new research is indicating that we have not understood this gland well. It seems that ancient cultures or even some eastern religions have not forgotten the role of the “third eye,” allegedly the pineal gland. There have been some recently published articles (2) that show Metatonin, related to melatonin, but is DMT based, is produced in the pineal gland of rats. DMT has long thought to be the molecule of consciousness which links the pineal gland to possible higher function than previously thought. Interestingly enough, the pineal glands of those with Alzheimers are completely calcified.  Approximately 40% of Americans have their pineal glands calcified by age 17. By old age, the pineal gland has about as much fluoride as teeth do. Why does this happen? Well the pineal gland is not protected by the blood brain barrier, which guards from many toxins and heavy metals. Therefore anything that enters our bloodstream will be exposed to the pineal gland without much protection. This explains why it is especially susceptible to exposure to environmental toxins such as aluminum, fluoride, cadmium, and mercury. “A study on the neuro- logical effects of occupational exposure to aluminum revealed sleep disturbance as a common complaint, with insomnia being reported in 22.4% of cases and sleepiness in 14.9%.”

Calcification seen in the pineal gland under microscope

Not only is the pineal linked to neurologic disorders if malfunctioning or calcified, but it has a strong connection to sleep disorders too. Its easy to understand how psychiatric and neurologic disorders would also disrupt sleep. In fact, a Hong Kong study found psychiatric conditions were the strongest predictors of insomnia in both men and women. The pineal is likely involved in all of these conditions. In one study, the brains of the deceased were examined and aluminum was found in the pineal glands. It accumulates aluminum at a rate that is twice that of other brain regions.

HOW ALUMINUM & GLYPHOSATE CAUSE DAMAGE TO THE PINEAL GLAND AND GUT

This combo can harm us in three different pathways that I’ll be discussing below via the Seneff study. First, through interfering with the CYP450 detox enzymes that also help to make melatonin. Secondly, by causing anemia that leads to hypoxia (decreased oxygenation) which increases the effect of aluminum on neurons (brain cells). Thirdly, through impaired sulfate synthesis in the liver in combination with vitamin D interference.

1. Enzyme Interference Leading to Disrupted Melatonin and Vitamin D deficiency. Heavy metals like aluminum and mercury are known neurotoxins.  In the Seneff paper, it is shown how these two toxicants work together to induce neurological damage. Many studies have now shown that Glyphosate disrupts the gut flora and this predisposes one to overgrowth from Clostridium Difficile. Better known in medical circles as C. Difficile, this nasty bug gives patients abdominal cramping, diarrhea and nausea. It reproduces by spores and can only be killed by using soap and water, not hand sanitizers. The most worrisome part is this bacteria is now being found outside of hospitals and in the community because our immunity is being lowered, in part due to Glyphosate. Both aluminum and glyphosate can enter the body together to cause major issues. Glyphosate chelates, or binds up aluminum. When this happens it can pass by the gut barrier and enter the bloodstream unchecked. This study also shows that both glyphosate and aluminum disrupt the cytochrome CYP450 enzyme which are involved in a number of detox reactions and in melatonin synthesis. P450 enzymes also help to breakdown medications, drugs, pesticides and other toxins, but if inhibited, the likelihood that we will experience toxicity is much higher. The CYP enzymes also are integral to making melatonin. So if we have glyphosate toxicity, we may be inadvertently harming our natural sleep patterns, leading to insomnia and impaired REM sleep.                                                                                                                 “Pigs fed a diet of GM Roundup-Ready corn and soy suffered from an inflamed stomach, clearly suggesting gut dysbiosis. A leaky gut, associated with gastrointestinal disorders, will facilitate the passage of both Al- citrate and Al-glyphosate past the impaired tight junctions of the gut boundary. Glyphosate is a microbicide, and it preferentially kills beneficial gut bacteria allowing pathogens like Clostridium difficile to overgrow.”-http://file.scirp.org/Html/5-3000951_53106.htm

 

REMEMBER THAT OUR BALANCED GUT FLORA REGULATES MOODS, CRAVINGS, AND IMMUNITY! This is imperative as Glyphosate wipes out good bacteria and promotes a breeding ground for maleficent bacteria.

It has also been noted that vitamin D deficiency, now rampant in the USA, can be caused by interference with the CYP enzymes. The charts from this paper also relates the epidemic of vitamin D deficiency to the correlation of expanding use of Round Up throughout the country.

The Increasing Prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency Courtesy of http://file.scirp.org/Html/5-3000951_53106.htm

There seems to be an important role for CYP enzymes in maintaining the health of the intestinal crypts and the villi in the small intestine, and this paper argues that CYP dysfunction in the gut and liver leads to impaired supply of serotonin, melatonin and sulfate to the brain. It is postulated that celiac disease is caused partially by Glyphosate as it causes CYP enzyme dysfunction as well.

2. Anemia and Hypoxia. The clostridia bacteria produces a toxic metabolite called p-cresol, which it is quite harmful and is linked to autism. Why? P-cresol can increase the uptake of aluminum via a receptor called transferrin. Aluminum can work synergistically with Glyphosate to produce anemia which can lead to decreased oxygen carrying capacity, known as hypoxia. Hypoxia increases the risks of aluminum’s effects on the neurons. This is also dangerous for the pineal as it loves lots of blood flow, but is inhibited from getting enough oxygen when anemia is present. Babies born with hypoxia due to preterm labor have a higher risk for autism as this hypoxia increases aluminum uptake by the pineal gland. (that has no protection because it doesn’t have the blood-brain barrier, remember?) Its a little like choking the pineal gland out; starving it of oxygen while introducing heavy metals that influence calcification.

Hospital Discharge Diagnoses of Anemia and correlation between Glyphosate applied to corn and soy; courtesy of  http://file.scirp.org/Html/5-3000951_53106.htm

3.  Impaired sulfate synthesis caused by vitamin D deficiency. Sulfate is an important ingredient in the phase 2 liver detoxification and is the precursor to the master antioxidant, glutathione. It has long been known that children with autism have impaired sulfate synthesis. In fact, these children are missing some very important building blocks like methionine, glutathione and cysteine. What is thought to occur is that glyphosate blocks the formation of these amino acids in plants and gut bacteria. But everyone is forgetting that these are humans’ sources of sulfate-plants and bacteria! We are all connected intimately to bacteria. When we disrupt their natural systems, we also seem to harm our own.

Furthermore, the CYP enzymes are again needed here to activate vitamin D in the kidney and the liver. With aluminum and glyphosate creating a barrier to vitamin D activation, it is thought that this could potentially be behind the vitamin D deficiency epidemic.

How is this defect in vitamin D related to sulfate?

Well, studies show that vitamin D regulates the uptake of sulfate in the kidneys. When the receptor is defective or we are vitamin D deficient, we are not transporting sulfate into the cells in the small intestines and therefore, the brain, (they’re connected!) which affects the proteoglycans, which are necessary for the health GI tract cells. Experiments on mice with impaired vitamin D receptors found that they had lower blood levels of sulfates and were dumping most of it out in their urine. If our GI tract is sick, then so are our brains and immune dysfunction usually follows.

In the brain, the pineal gland conjugates melatonin to sulfate before shipping it out. Vitamin D, tryptophan (used to make the happy neurotransmitter, serotonin), DHEA (the precursor to testosterone), and estrogen are all also sulfated when they are shipped out. Sulfate is also proposed to be needed in the body’s mechanism to rid itself of toxic cellular debris, plaques, oxidized lipids and old proteins. Can you see how important sulfate transport and utilization is throughout the entire body?

“In summary, evidence from multiple fronts suggests that sulfate insufficiency is a critical factor in neurological disease. A deficiency in vitamin D, which induces sulfate wasting through the kidneys, leads to suppressed serotonin synthesis in the brain and excess serotonin synthesis in the placenta, both of which contribute to the pathology of autism in the fetus and the neonate.

It has become very clear that Alzheimer’s is associated with calcification of the pineal gland, and with sharply decreased synthesis of melatonin. When melatonin levels were measured postmortem in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of 85 Alzheimer’s patients and 82 age-matched controls , it was found that CSF melatonin levels in the AD patients were only 20% of the levels found in the control subjects. This was equally true for early-stage Alzheimer’s as for late-stage. Those with two copies of the ApoE-4 marker for Alzheimer’s risk had even lower levels of melatonin than the other Alzheimer’s patients. Computer tomography (CT) was used to show that the amount of calcified pineal tissue in patients with Alzheimer’s disease was significantly more than that in either normal controls, patients with depression, or patients with other types of dementia.”

Although we know calcification can begin very early in life, it is clearly much worse in neurologic conditions, like Alzheimer’s. The pineal gland helps to make sulfate when properly functioning, but calcification has a significant negative effect on its ability to do so. Therefore, aluminum uptake (remember it’s greater in the pineal gland), will disrupt melatonin and sulfate synthesis needed to run many processes in the body that keep us well.

Discussion

I couldn’t have said it better than Dr Seneff so I’ll finish with her discussion quote. I hope you all can see how important it is to raise awareness on this topic. We should all be demanding honest and organic food for our families. We should be speaking out against biotech firms who seeks profit over humanity. We should be looking to natural herbs and vitamins to help detox us from herbicides and pesticides. Take care of yourself. You are your own best doctor.

“In this paper, we have developed the argument that a synergistic interaction between aluminum and glyphosate can lead to severe impairment of pineal gland function, and that this could explain the association of sleep disorder with a wide range of neurological diseases, and likely even help explain the related pathologies of those diseases. We began by showing the remarkably strong correlations between glyphosate application to corn and soy in the US and sleep disorder, autism, ADHD, suicide, anxiety disorder, and dementia. We have shown how glyphosate could assist entry of aluminum into the general circulation through chelation, and how glyphosate would indirectly enhance aluminum absorption by the pineal gland via its induction of p-cresol synthesis by pathogenic gut bacteria. p-Cresol enhances aluminum uptake via transferrin, which is present in large amounts in the pineal gland, and in enhanced amounts under hypoxic stress conditions, induced by both glyphosate and aluminum. We have also discussed the important role of CYP enzyme dysfunction in disrupting vitamin D3 homeostasis and disrupting sulfation and metabolism of melatonin. We have shown that vitamin D3 normally plays an important role in maintaining the health of the intestinal villi in the small intestine, and we have argued that part ofits role may be to supply sulfate to the enterocytes.
Serotonin is the sole precursor to melatonin, and serotonin itself is produced by ECcells in the intestinal villi from tryptophan, one of the three aromatic amino acids whose synthesis is disrupted by glyphosate, through its interference with the shikimate pathway. Since tryptophan is an essential amino acid, we depend upon supply from food sources and/or from our gut bacteria. Thus, it can be expected that glyphosate residues in the food crops introducing exposure to gut microbes would lead to deficiencies in tryptophan and therefore in serotonin and melatonin.”

Much Love

Dr Jess

REFERENCES:

  1. Séralini G-E, Clair E, Mesnage R, Gress S, Defarge N, 1, Malatesta M, Hennequin D, Spiroux de Vendômois J. Republished study: long-term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Environmental Sciences Europe 2014, 26:14.
  2. https://www.cottonwoodresearch.org/dmt-pineal-2013/
  3. Higaki, M., Takahashi, M., Suzuki, T. and Sahashi, Y. (1965) Biological Activities in Animals of Vitamin D III. Biogenesis of Vitamin D Sulfate in Animal Tissues. The Journal of Vitaminology, 11, 261-265.
  4. http://dx.doi.org/10.5925/jnsv1954.11.261 [Citation Time(s):1]
    Higaki, M., Takahashi, M., Suzuki, T. and Sahash, Y. (1965) Metabolic Activities of Vitamin D in Animals. IV. Distribution of Vitamin D Sulfokinase in Animal Tissues and Its Isolation. The Journal of Vitaminology, 11, 266-270. http://dx.doi.org/10.5925/jnsv1954.11.266 [Citation Time(s):1]

4 Little Known Herbs and Foods that Can Control Cholesterol

The number is shocking, but more than 100 million Americans suffer from high cholesterol issues. This means their total cholesterol is above 200. If you guys have followed me for awhile, you know that I am disappointed in the mainstream medicine system for putting every single patient (it feels like) on a statin, like Lipitor. These medications are some of the top prescribed medications in the USA, racking in a shocking 12 billion dollars per year since their advent. But where is the study that shows it is actual cholesterol plaques in the arteries causing the issues? How do we know it isn’t just inflammation? How do we know what the proper levels are for cholesterol? Why is some cholesterol bad and some good?

In my opinion, cholesterol is NEEDED in the proper levels for brain function and memory. It is integral in the formation of cell membranes, vitamin D, sex hormones like estrogen and testosterone, bile acids to emulsify and absorb nutrients, and a wide range of metabolic processes. We actually need it! For years, mainstream medicine touted cholesterol as “bad” and that the lower the levels, the better. Sadly, this is untrue and was a ploy to sell their popular statin medications. Statins, like Lipitor, Crestor, Pravachol and Zocor have approximately a 20% rate of causing liver failure and are also a risk for myalgias, or severe muscle cramping. They have also been linked to heart failure.

If a patient is at risk for angina, heart disease, or strokes, this is a sign that overall lifestyle changes should be made. Diet, exercise, meditation, stress management and emotional burdens should be examined and bravely worked on. This is a journey of self love and everyone will be ready at their own pace.

Many of us know about some natural ways like omega 3 fatty acids, niacin, red yeast rice, or flaxseed to help correct abnormal cholesterol levels. However, there is one combo that even helps extremely high cholesterol like familial hypercholesterolemia, a genetic mutation that causes levels to be over 1000! If you or someone you know is ready to make the change to a more holistic lifestyle including herbs and organic, whole foods, here is where you can start with cholesterol.

  1. Berberine- This is an alkaloid that comes from a number of different plants like barberry. It is widely known to lower risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and to aid in weight loss. But researchers were surprised when they saw what 500mg three times a day for 12 weeks could do for cholesterol.”Dr. Hu Yueshan, Ph.D, and colleagues from the Avera Institute for Human Genetics, in Sioux Falls, SD, had been investigating berberine for its ability to prevent fat accumulation in obese humans and mice. They therefore conducted a study in obese human subjects to determine the safety and efficacy of berberine treatment on cholesterol and a number of other important cardiovascular risk factors such as body weight and markers of inflammation.Taking berberine supplements to lower cholesterol leads to 12% reduction in cholesterol and 23% reduction in triglycerides

The treatment with berberine significantly reduced blood lipid levels. Cholesterol levels decreased by an average of 12% and triglycerides by 23%.The researchers also replicated the lipid-lowering effect of berberine in rats (9% decrease of cholesterol and 34.7% decrease of triglycerides). The human subjects also lost an average of five pounds without changing their diets”(1)  Wow! This means berberine is more effective than the statin, Zetia! In my experience, I have seen berberine work quite well to lower cholesterol and normalize levels…without side effects! If you would like to try berberine, look for a 500mg capsule and try it out three times a day for 3 months.

2. Citrus Bergamot- Is an orange that comes from the Calabria region of Italy. The essential oil in the peel has been popularized around the world for its use in perfumes and aromatherapy as it helps to reduce anxiety. Not just that, but citrus bergamot has high antioxidant ability due to its polyphenol concentration. When examined and then extracted, this citrus has the ability to dramatically lower triglycerides and LDL cholesterol, while raising the “good” cholesterol HDL. Like its counterpart, berberine, it also can help control blood sugars and lower cardiovascular risk.

  “In a placebo-controlled clinical trial, Italian researchers gave either 500 mg or 1,000 mg of bergamot extract daily to study     volunteers with high cholesterol levels. After one month, average LDL cholesterol in the two groups fell by 24 and 36 percent, respectively, HDL cholesterol increased by 22 and 40 percent, and triglycerides—another cardiovascular risk factor—declined by 30 and 39 percent. These are impressive results for any intervention, let alone a nutritional supplement.” (2) Whats really nice about this natural food is that while statins rob your body of the necessary antioxidant, CoQ10, citrus bergamot does not have this effect. It leaves antioxidants alone, while still regulating proper cholesterol levels. Isn’t that what we all want?

       To try out citrus bergamot, take 500mg-1000mg twice a day for 3 months.

Noni (Also named as Morinda Citrifolia, Rubiaceae Noni, great morinda, indian mulberry)

3. Noni Berries- In Polynesian folk medicine, the juice of noni berries has been used for centuries to help remedy heart problems, cholesterol, and reduce pain. The juice comes from the exotic fruit, noni or Morinda citrifolia which grows in the Asia Pacific part of the world. It lowers cholesterol naturally by preventing the absorption of LDL cholesterol, thereby boosting memory as well. It also contains high antioxidants in the form of phytosterols.

To confirm these findings, researcher Mian-Ying Wang, MD performed a study on noni juice. She took 100 smokers who were not on other cholesterol medication and had them drink 1 to 4 ounces everyday for a month. 26 other volunteers got a placebo juice that did not contain noni berries. Total cholesterol in the noni juice drinkers went from 235.2 to 190 after one month! Triglycerides dropped from 242.5 to 193.5. The placebo group had no significant changes.

Noni has also been touted as an analgesic, immune system booster, cancer fighter, and antidepressant, however, more studies are needed to confirm these claims.

Try 60ml of noni juice daily for 3 months to see if it helps you!

4. Jerusalem Artichoke-this special artichoke is an annual plant closely related to the sunflower. Not only do I recommend this veggie as a prebiotic for some gut issues, but it also helps lower cholesterol as well. Why?

Jerusalem artichoke contains a high amount of fiber called inulin (also found in chicory and dandelion). Inulin works by sweeping the bowels clean and works on gut bacteria by encouraging the growth of the healthy bifidobacteria. As it sweeps through the GI tract, it captures some of the fat eaten, preventing its absorption into the bloodstream. This fat (AND CHOLESTEROL) is then moved out through the bowels without being brought into the body to affect levels in the liver. It works well to lower LDL and triglycerides.

Not only does Jerusalem artichoke work on cholesterol, but it helps to regulate digestion, obesity, constipation, colon cancer, and heartburn.

To try it out with the rest of my recommendations, try 900mg to 1000mg twice a day.

Remember these are synergistic and should be used together for the best and most efficacious results! There are other options besides statins and their nasty side effects. Take your health into your own hands.

Remember you are your own best doctor!

Much Love

Dr Jess

REFERENCES:

  1. http://universityhealthnews.com/daily/heart-health/natural-berberine-supplements-to-lower-cholesterol-more-effective-and-better-tolerated-than-prescription-ezetimibe-zetia/
  2. https://www.drwhitaker.com/benefits-of-bergamot/
  3. Wang, M., Kikuzaki, H., Csiszar, K., Boyd, C.D., Maunakea, A., Fong, S.F., Ghai, G., Rosen, R.T., Nakatani, N., Ho, C.T., (1999) Novel Trisaccharide fatty acid ester identified from the fruits of Morinda citrifolia (Noni). Agric Food Chem. 47;4880-2.

5 Herbs That Help To Balance Hormones

If you have been feeling down lately, noticed weight gain or weight loss, you may have an underlying issue that affects millions of people. Sudden changes in your body may be the result of hormonal imbalance. Hormones like estrogen, progesterone, insulin, testosterone and adrenaline help in keeping us healthy.

Hormonal imbalances can be the cause of diseases like diabetes, depression, fatigue, infertility, mood swings, migraines, and especially endocrine disruptors in the environment. These include BPA, plastic, and parabens. Hormonal imbalances are more common in females. Hormonal changes in women happen during puberty, pregnancy, menstruation and menopause. There seems to be more rapid changes in today’s world because of environmental pollution and a poor job of the EPA and FDA in protecting us from this. Because of this, women are more prone to hormonal imbalances.

Weight problems, anxiety, fatigue, irritability, hair loss or hair growth, acne, mood swings are some of the symptoms of hormonal imbalance. You can notice the problem by observing your energy, eating patterns or hunger. If you notice any changes, consult the doctor and start the treatment with lifestyle changes, herbal supplements (see my Hormone Master), dietary improvements, stress relievers and possibly, bioidentical hormones. You can also resort to homemade remedies and herbs to recover from hormonal imbalance.

Natural Remedies for Hormonal Imbalance:

Ashwagandha :

Ashwagandha, also known as Withania somnifera, is a popular herb used in Ayurveda, for medicinal purposes. It has positive effects on the mental, physical and emotional health of a person. It helps in balancing the hormones as it acts as an adaptogen and reduces cortisol. Ashwagandha can increase the production of testosterone, androgens and DHEA. This herb is also useful to improve the thyroid function. It is good for menopausal support as it works on the endocrine system to improve the hormonal balance. This reduces the symptoms like anxiety, mood changes, hot flashes, which women experience. Ashwagandha is good for energizing and reducing the fatigue, as it reduces the stress-related disorder. This herb supports sexual health and fertility. Ashwagandha also fights mood fluctuations and helps in relaxing.
Holy basil:

Also known as Tulsi, this herb is wonderful in balancing hormones as it acts as natural adaptogen, meaning it gives you energy when needed or provides calming energy when needed. This assists in the biochemical development of stress by balancing cortisol levels. Tulsi helps balance the blood glucose levels and indirectly balances the secretion of cortisol. High levels of cortisol negatively affects the thyroid gland, pancreas and ovaries. This herb is useful for improving mood and mental health and we all know, a better mood keeps us stress free and calm.
Maca root:

Maca root or Lepidium meyenii, improves normal hormone production. The Maca root has a positive effect on the energy levels, mood and fertility. This herb is endocrine adaptogen, which boost hormone production and contains nutrients which are needed to help normal hormone production. It has minerals like calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc and includes carbohydrates, amino acids and proteins. Consuming this herb, increases the energy levels and reduces fatigue and the stress levels. This is exactly why we put it in our Hormone Master, and have been very successful with this wonderful herb!
Shatavari:

Ayurveda has always recommended Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus) to recover from hormonal imbalance and the diseases which might occur as a result of this. It improves hormone levels and increases fertility. The herb nourishes and cleanses the blood and the reproductive organ of women, thus improving female fertility. Shatavari is an adaptogenic herb, so again, it gives you what your body needs. It balances the endocrine system, which affects the production of all the hormones that regulate our response to stress and mood swings. Shatavari can drastically improve hormonal imbalances caused by stress and anxiety. It manages menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings and controls the pain and blood loss during menstruation.
Chasteberry:

This herb is great for hormonal balance for women. It is a natural source progesterone and balances the estrogen and progesterone. Consequently, it reduces the symptoms associated with premenstrual syndrome like cramps, acne, bloating, etc. It is beneficial for most menstrual irregularities, pain and mood swings. The herb improves fertility and helps in sustaining pregnancy. It controls the symptoms of perimenopause or menopause. Chasteberry lowers testosterone levels and can assist in preventing prostate cancer.
Before you start using any of these herbs, it is better to consult the doctor. Along with these herbs, it is essential to have a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.

5 Herbs That Help To Balance Hormones

Hormonal imbalances can also be caused by irregular sleep or unhealthy diet.

●  A good night’s sleep is essential in keeping the hormones balanced. Proper sleep 
is essential for a good health and to avoid any of the health issues. Most of the health issues are caused because of lack or sleep or irregular sleep. Try to get 7 -8 hours of sleep every day, which restores energy and allows the body to recover.

●  Exercising regularly lowers cortisol levels. Physical activity, absolutely balances hormones. Exercise releases endorphins which makes you happy and relieves stress. Also you can’t beat the healthy weight loss it provides!

●  Vitamin D influences the pituitary gland, which produces hormones. Deficiency of vitamin D can result in an abnormal release of parathyroid hormone. Vitamin D can affect your weight and diet and alleviate the symptom of low estrogen levels. It is actually more of a hormone that vitamin because it has far reaching effects throughout the body!

●  Coconut oil helps in balancing the hormones. Coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acids, which encourage healthy thyroid functioning, as they can be broken down quickly and used by your brain and glandular organs for quick energy. It assists in weight loss, improves immunity, balances blood sugar levels and your metabolism. 
All these remedies reduce the hormonal imbalance and improves the overall health.

This way you can become your own best doctor!

Much Love Dr Jess

Relation of human brain and guts, second brain, image diagram

How The Bacteria in Your Gut Control Your Mood, Cravings and Mind

Those little parasites and bacteria in your gut are playing mind games with you!

A new study published by BioEssays and research conducted by Dr. Joe Alcock at University of New Mexico has confirmed that gut microbes are able to control food cravings, behavioral choices and personality changes.

We are made up of more bacteria than cells! Many of these bacterial colonies live in the gut where they use our food for survival. Bacteria within the gut are manipulative and can their interests are not always aligned with our dietary goals.

Microbes are intelligent enough to influence our cravings based on what they need for survival. Studies describe how the bacteria, Preveotella, grows easily on carbohydrates and how the bacteria Bifidobacteria gravitates to dietary fiber for its needs. They release hormones and chemicals via the vagus nerve that connects your brain to your gut.

The hormones then communicate with our brain to influence our cravings and choices ….that benefit their survival! Most bacteria are not that picky and can utilize whatever you eat for food, however even THOSE guys have a preferential treatment for a certain combination of nutrients and minerals. This is the epitome of “survival of the fittest.” They have also been shown to induce cravings based on what would suppress their competitors’ needs. This way they kill off the competition. They also can create dysphoria for humans when we eat their competitors’ favorite nutrients. Smart huh? They can make you feel ill if you eat something that does not benefit them!

The vagus nerve connects the brain to the gut for chemical messages.

Scientists believe we have a microbiome-gut-brain axis feedback loop which in a sense, increases or decreases cravings through nerve stimulation, hormone modulation and local chemical release. This is our second brain and contains it’s own enteric nervous system! This system can tell our brains, “We want candy or chips or anything bad for us!”

What connects the brain to the gut for these signals? Its our vagus nerve! It connects the base of the skull (medulla oblongata) to the enteric nerves in our gut. Gut micobes are responsible for how we feel when we are hungry and give us feedback info through happy hormones or toxins based on what we eat; microbes are responsible for expression of different receptors and genes as well as increasing or decreasing signals from the vagus nerve to the brain. I cannot stress enough. A healthy gut with beneficial symbiotic bacteria is a healthy, happy person. Did you know the gut contains 95% of the serotonin stores? Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that contributes to our feeling of happiness.  This is why mental disorders are rampant in America. The standard American diet is largely responsible. Keep reading for dietary suggestions to get your gut healthy.

Why is the gut so important?

First I want to explain why is gut flora so important. You won’t have the incentive to eat properly and know how if you don’t understand the physiology. Plus these microbes are really intelligent!

Studies have shown that in rodents, the gut microbiome can influence neural development, brain chemistry and nearly all behaviors, including emotions, pain perception and how the stress system responds!

“Research has found, for example, that tweaking the balance between beneficial and disease-causing bacteria in an animal’s gut can alter its brain chemistry and lead it to become either more bold or more anxious. The brain can also exert a powerful influence on gut bacteria; as many studies have shown, even mild stress can tip the microbial balance in the gut, making the host more vulnerable to infectious disease and triggering a cascade of molecular reactions that feed back to the central nervous system.”-American Psychological Association

In fact, changing the scope of gut bacteria completely changed mice’s personalities. In one striking demonstration of the “microbiome-gut-brain axis,” published in Gastroenterology in 2011, researchers gave antibiotics to a strain of mice that are typically timid and shy. It dramatically changing the composition of their gut bacteria and subsequently their behavior. “Their behavior completely changed,” Bercik says. “They became bold and adventurous.” Some studies have even shown all that is necessary for behavioral change is ONE switch in bacterium type in the gut. Research also shows that certain benevolent bacteria like the famous lactobacillus, may even help down regulate anxiety. Our gut bacteria “fingerprint” is not only responsible for our food cravings and immunity (80% is in the gut), but also for our mental state. Your food feeds your gut and encourages growth of different strains of bacteria which then refer signals back to your brain about your physical and mental status.

95% of Serotonin Stores are in the Gut

Did you know that 95% of your body’s serotonin or 5-HT, an important neurotransmitter responsible for mood, is located in your gut? The microbiome-brain-gut access communicates regularly. SSRI’s, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, like the antidepressants, Prozac or lexapro, work by leaving serotonin around longer to have its effect…this effect occurs more in the brain supposedly, however 95% of 5-HTP is in the gut. Too much 5-HTP causes nausea/diarrhea/anxiety. (The anti nausea medication, Zofran, works as a 5-HTP antagonist, meaning it blocks too much 5-HTP).

Too little leads to constipation and depression. Normally serotonin is calming to the stomach, especially if the system is running as expected. SSRI antidepressants have the potential to completely disrupt or change our gut flora, for better or for worse, by this theory. (Moreover, SSRIs all contain oreganofluorines-supposedly broken down inorganic fluoride compounds in the body. Fluoride has been shown to lower IQ in studies done by Harvard and Lancet) The question is-does leaky gut from food/ bacteria trigger communication with the brain that creates depression? Or does depression trigger leaky gut through the brain communicating to the gut? How do SSRIs fit in with true gut health?

It is of paramount significance for everyone who understands this information to boycott any and everything genetically modified and massed synthesized with a gene gun, which puts bacterial DNA into the DNA of our food to breed for certain “desirable” traits. You should also now see that SSRI antidepressants have the potential to completely disregulate or improve our gut flora, as more 5-HTP will undoubtedly change the brain and gut environment and hence, the bacterial strains able to thrive there. How serotonin stores bodywide are effected and redistributed is unclear at this time.

The bottom line is that food can change our bacterial micro biome (or gut bacteria) which then influence everything else!

What do I need to do to start my journey to gut stability and health?

These facts are why I find it incomprehensible that other healthcare workers cannot see that food is medicine. You literally are what you eat. If you wish for a long, vital and exuberant life than please get your gut as healthy as possible.

1) Take probiotics & probiotics.

Probiotics come in pills and should be in a specialized container that prevents breakdown and need for refrigeration. There are also refrigerated forms, kefir, unpasteurized yogurt or fermented teas like kombucha. Fermented foods are a great source of beneficial flora (think kimchi). Pasteurization kills off any microbial strains that might be beneficial for gut health. Try to look for unpasteurized choices. Know that cheese and pasteurized dairy products we highly inflammatory and should be avoided especially in someone with leaky gut issues. They should contain a variety of anerobic & gut specific strains, especially lactobacillus. Prebiotics are indigestible fiber rich foods which help cultivate an ideal environment for beneficial gut bacteria. They provide a gentle breeding ground and hospitable barrier for symbiotic bacteria. (Chicory root, garlic, onion, bananas). It is very difficult to get all the Prebiotics you need in a day. Eat them liberally!

2) Cleanse the bowels.

Yep, microbe, heavy metal cleanses, and enemas are necessary. Don’t think microbes are responsible? H. Pylori, a gut bacteria is known to cause gastric cancer. The hepatitis virus causes liver cancer. Candida buildup cause tumors as well, especially in the lungs and respiratory tract . Emotional toxins & trauma can also be stored in the digestive tract and biliary organs, like the liver. You must cleanse yourself emotionally & physically.

3) Avoid antibiotics

They can be life saving at times, however, the majority of times they’re over prescribed. Antibiotics completely obliterate all bad AND good gut bacteria. So yes, the patient recovers, but without proper inherent immunity, they fail to recover chronically. Why do you think clindamycin, is the biggest culprit responsible for C Diff, the terribly contagious & resistant bacteria that causes profuse diarrhea? It wipes out good bacteria. All antibiotics cause vaginal infections due to obliteration of beneficial bacteria. Widespread use of antibacterial hand sanitizer safe also responsible for widespread bacterial resistance to antibiotics as well as destruction of good gut bacteria.

4) Chronic stress

You know how right before an important speech, your tummy can get knots in it and you can even feel nauseated? This shows you how your brain and gut can affect each other significantly. Stress is very important from this standpoint. Stress leads to decreased immunity and stomach or upset-even leaky gut! Don’t let stress derail your emotions enough to affect your health. Remember you will create suffering for yourself/others if you practice any negative emotions. Regardless of the situation, learn to be enthused, be inspired or learn to accept what you cannot change. All else will cause suffering and strife as you fight what you cannot change or accept! Emotional writing & poetry also helps those with sensitive immune systems due to early trauma and suppressed feelings. You may experience deep rooted & heavy emotions that you didn’t expect while journaling! Emotions are your friend. Bottling up sincere pain and turmoil will slowly kill your immunity-and your happiness. Tears are released grief and emotional trauma. Do not suppress it.

5) Eat organic REAL food

It is essential for health to eat REAL FOOD. Even if the chips you love are “organic,” your ancestors would not recognize that as food. Grains like wheat and gluten contain gliadin, which has been shown to induce and contribute to leaky gut.

Food grown naturally on earth contains vital nutrition not found in something made in a lab. GMO wreaks havoc on gut immunity and causes permeable holes or leaky gut, disrupting cell membrane integrity and therefore, immunity. Remember most biotech companies pay to conduct research on their products and then are able to have them published. Multiple studies show safety with gmo, however these studies as paid for big such companies as Monsanto or Bayer. For example, Bayer pharma wrote my Harrison’s internal medicine board review questions! Something is not right or ethical here. I have also not touched on the fact that conflicts of interest exist between the FDA and Monsanto as many of their employees have worked for both corporations. As food is medicine, no other avenues toward health will be permanent until you clean up your diet!

6) Cut Down on Alcohol or other Toxins

You can’t eat right but then drink excessive alcohol and hope that you won’t burn out your gut defenses. You will. Alcohol completely eats away at the stomach lining-or barrier to immunity. It leads to excessive acidity in the digestive tract and eventual ulcers and bleeding. Alcohol only in moderation please. Try to stop smoking or indulging in refined sugar and carbohydrates.

7) Mother Nature Provides Healing Herbs

Look into herbs and healing plants that are known to repair the gut lining and make your tummy more hospitable to friendly bacteria like-aloe vera, the amino acid L-glutamine, colostrum, slippery elm bark, marshmallow root, licorice, coconut oil, and fermented foods should be staples in your diet and quest for a healthy gut!
Keep your gut happy and healthy for longevity and extended health! You can become your own best doctor!

Much Love

Dr Jess

References:

http://www.nature.com/nri/journal/v9/n5/full/nri2515.html

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3554020/

http://m.naturalnews.com/news/046779_second_brain_gut_bacteria_human_behavior.html

http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/09/gut-feeling.aspx

Long and Happy Life

How To Live a Long and Happy Life: Secrets From Okinawa

Because of my job, I have patients ask me all the time what the key to longevity is.

Paradise beach on the deserted tropical island of         Okinawa, Japan

“Long and Happy Life” is a boon to some, but a difficult time for many.  It seems that the more advanced our society becomes, the higher the rates of anxiety, depression, and cancer. None of these is synonymous with a long and happy life. What are we doing wrong?

The island of Okinawa in Japan, just north of Taiwan, has long been a hot spot for the secrets to longevity. It is unrivaled for its health, spirituality and connection to mind and body. In fact, Okinawa has some of the highest number of centenarians (those who live past 100) in the world at about 50 per 100,000 compared to 5-10 per 100,000 in the USA. These aren’t your average old folks either. Here in the west, we associate old age with misery, joint pain, dementia and nursing homes, but in Okinawa, the centenarians are happy and surprisingly independent. Diseases like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, autism, cancer, diabetes and heart disease are virtually unheard of, at least, not until you’re 90! Interestingly enough, when an Okinawan is removed from his or her society and established rituals, then adopts an American or Western lifestyle, their age limits begin to parallel those of the citizens of the United States.

Secrets From Okinawa for Long and Happy Life

What exactly is the secret to long and happy life?

Although genes do play a role, it seems lifestyle might be the biggest contributor. In 2000, the Okinawa Centenarian Study published some fascinating facts on longevity:

1. Plant based diet

Okinawa is a beautiful tropical island which helps anyone’s mood, but there is a bigger secret to their success. Because the plants are closer to the equator where the sun’s damage may be greater, they protect themselves by producing higher amounts of phytochemicals and antioxidants to stay alive. These nutrients not only protect the plants from the sun’s rays, but from animal/insect consumption too. Those phytochemicals are what correct free radicals and eliminate inflammation from our bodies! Okinawans eat up to 10 servings of fruits and veggies a day-ALL ORGANIC! (sounds like Gerson therapy doesn’t it?)

2. Limited to No Animal Protein

Senior couple working in vegetables garden in Okinawa.

In Okinawa, the population follows a plant based diet where they

grow their own food. It is 80% plant based with the 20% reserved for fish and occasionally, pork if there is a special ceremony. It is also free of antibiotics, hormones and cruelty that exists in western culture in factory farms. I often say it is not animal meat that is the full problem. It is what is being done to the meat in factory farms coupled with our

 3. High Flavanoids (estrogenic compounds from food) and Good Fats

Halved cut bitter melons

They eat natural grains, root vegetables, sweet potatoes, leafy greens and a ton of NON GMO fermented soy (90% is GMO in the USA). Examples like miso, flax or tofu, are excellent for the liver and for menopause. Women experience menopause naturally with fewer complications. Another secret is bitter gourd or goya. As the name implies, this is a very bitter melon! It contains B vitamins, vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, iron and beta carotene. It contains a phytonutrient called charantin and an insulin mimicking compound called polypeptide P that induces lower blood sugar and could be a remedy for diabetics.

4. Caloric Restriction

They practice a technique called Hara Hachi Bu, where they do not overeat. It translate to 8 parts out of 10, meaning they stop eating when they are 80% full. Caloric restriction has been a debatable topic but studies have shown that restriction, without malnutrition, can produce measurable benefits and potential longevity. For one, you lose weight and this is a good thing for most Americans. Caloric restriction also activates autophagy, which is the process by which older, dead cells are gobbled and cleaned up by other cells to keep the body running at tip top shape.

If the body is inefficient at removing old debris, then this buildup can lead to neurodegenerative and cardiac diseases. If the body does not have to use calories to digest food, it can use that extra energy towards killing pathogens or increasing our own immunity.

Other studies point to “hormesis,” which means to induce benefit from low intensity biological stressors. This theory proposes that a calorie restricted diet excites the immune system and heightens the defensive state by inducing small amounts of stress, which lead to turning on longevity genes through epigenetics (certain genes are turned off and on based on nutrition, environment, thoughts, etc).

5. Daily exercise

They practice daily exercise that is not only beneficial for the body, but the mind too. You know how wonderful it feels to finish a challenging or relaxing yoga class? Imagine doing that every day in a slower paced, island environment. The majority practice Tai Chi, karate, gardening, dance, yoga or martial arts which are known to connect mind and body in a more spiritual process. Also, no one smokes! They also have little osteoporosis (no they don’t drink a lot of milk which recent studies have shown can contribute to osteoporosis) because they eat more plants which are chock full of calcium! They then activate vitamin D and overall bone health by spending time outdoors in the sun.

6. Positive attitude

When polled, the Okinawans consistently scored higher in the ability to handle stressful situations as well as overall outlook on life. On the island they enjoy a slower paced life and close, supportive networks. Lab results reveal low levels of homocysteine, an inflammatory amino acid present in those with heart disease. Okinawans have a 80% lower risk of heart attack! Stress truly is a killer. It can create hormonal imbalances, raise blood pressure, and drive us crazy mentally. The Okinawans have found a way to turn negative stress into positive opportunities.

7. Close knit community groups

We are social beings who need love and support from friends and loved ones. Up to 80% of Okinawa’s elderly live alone independently or with a spouse, however they never give up their connection to community centers or elder day cares where they engage in games, sports or exercise together. There is a name for these social groups and they are called moai groups. In Okinawa, growing old is looked at respectfully and the elders still help to run the community. There is always family visiting as life is slower paced. There are local festivals, gardening activities and healing herbs brought to friends and dances for all to attend to continually heal the body and soul.

8. Find your “ikigai:”

Ikigai means “your purpose.” Retirement is a foreign concept in Okinawa. Their belief is make life worth living no matter how old you are. You help others and continue to always look for a renewed mission. Its like the saying goes-if you love what you do then you’ll never work a day in your life. No one goes into debt there to support their lifestyle, therefore they are not stuck in a career that does not give them pleasure just to pay the bills.

9. Cultivate spirituality

Spirituality, but not religion, is a major part of life in Okinawa. There are morning rituals, meditation groups and a continued sense of belonging to a group that works collectively to achieve something bigger than them. They do not shy away from music or dancing as they believe this awakens the soul. The natives play Okinawan instruments like a traditional banjo and gather for community celebrations often. Women in Okinawa are noro (priestesses) or yuta (female shaman).

10. Eastern and western medical approaches

Unlike the mindset in the west where there is a pill for every symptom and hard work to achieve health is often shunned, the Okinawans combine both aspects to achieve overall health. The employ shamanistic healing practices, spirituality and some western outlooks. They believe in the vitality and health of the people and their villages. Particularly, the older women play an active role as the religious leaders and spiritual shaman in the villages. Ancient herbs like the ones used in Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine are used in daily life. In fact, turmeric is consumed in large quantities (mostly in tea) and is revered for its antioxidant and detoxifying effects on the liver. Turmeric has been found to be one of the only substances that can kill cancer stem cells.

We could all learn some lifestyle lessons from the wise and gentle people of Okinawa, Japan.

Ways of Defeating cellulite

The Only Tool You’ll Ever Need To Defeat Cellulite

GUYS-I have the best news ever – holy grail for defeating cellulite.

But first, let me back up and start from the beginning…..

If you’re one of the 85% of women (and even some men) that suffer from some level of cellulite, then I feel your pain. Even in my teens and 20’s, I had cellulite on the sides and backs of my legs that left me feeling super insecure. As I reached my 30’s the problem seemed to get worse. I got the Mirena and before that, had been on synthetic birth control for most of my adult life which completely wrecked my hormones.

Aging plus abnormal hormone levels cause aging skin, sun spots, and the cellulite will worsen! I used to never have a problem with putting on a bikini, but suddenly I had all kinds of unwanted doubts. Mind you, a lot of this is always in our heads. We are our own worst critics. I’m not saying that I’m any different or that my problem was even an enormous issue to overcome. However, it is extremely important that we feel good in our own skin and in this area, I was lacking.

What Exactly is the Physical and Emotional Cause of Cellulite?

I have done a myriad of research into cellulite. On the mainstream medicine sites, they claimed cellulite was a “dimpling of the skin” due to persistent underlying, subcutaneous fat on hips, stomach or thighs. I had even contemplated surgery or one of those lasers that uses heat to “break up and melt away” the fat tissue. It was easy for me to ask around since I was in the medical field and every surgeon or dermatologist that I questioned did not seem to know the cause or cure for this pesky issue. It made sense that they could “melt” the fat away since it was a fat problem, right? I didn’t understand how I personally could have this problem. I was a gym rat with a 6 pack for most of my entire 20s. It seemed other girls were in the same boat as me, not matter how much they worked out, they still had cellulite. So something was adding up. So my search continued…

When I began to become interested in energy healing and alternative medicine, I came across a couple books and articles that changed the game for me. They were all about repressed emotions, life missions or traumas that were hidden deep in the physical body. I actually wrote a full blog post on repressed emotions and you can read it here:http://drjess.com/repressed-emotions-can-lead-to-dis-ease-the-mind-body-connection/

The research I uncovered for the emotional cause of cellulite hit me like a blow to the heart. It seemed that many bodyworkers and intuitive healers agreed that cellulite was due to a very oppressive upbringing early in life as well as suppressing one’s natural gifts. Thick thighs and cellulite represented repressed anger at the parents, specifically the patriarchal figure. I love my parents dearly but back then they were religious fanatics who molded me into a God fearing child with little say so in my life. This explanation resonated so hard with me!

It turns out that cellulite has nothing to do with a “fat” problem and everything to do with a fascia problem. Fascia is the thin sheath enclosing muscles, bones, nerves, arteries, veins and internal organs. It is densely woven, right below the skin and can form a spiderweb-like structure, holding us in place. If the fascia becomes too tight or thick, it can create a casing that restricts the blood flow and nerve conduction. Now consider the emotional ramifications of that. Our fascia, or connective tissue, holds us together, but if we have an oppressive upbringing, especially one where our inherent talents are suppressed, then we develop “thick skin.” We must become tough and harden up.  As such, our connective tissue and skin, the biggest organ in our bodies, follow suit. Our bodies do not function properly without healthy blood flow and rapid nerve conduction. Neither do we function well in life if we are suppressing talents in lieu of an oppressive childhood where we cannot be ourselves. This makes perfect sense.

Fascia is the spiderweb below the skin

Enter in…The Fascia Blaster….

What is the Fascia Blaster?

Besides being a life changer? Who knew that a stick with claws on it could have so much power?

Ok I know cellulite is not the worst issue to have at all, but ridding yourself of insecurities is definitely up there. One day I was surfing Facebook with my best friend. An ad came up with a lady holding this curious white stick with claws. I rarely turn the volume up on these things, but my friend squealed, “Have you seen this thing that supposedly gets rid of cellulite?” I was instantly interested. The video turned out to be of Ashley Black of ashleyblackguru.com. She was giving a live demonstration using some sort of tool that I had never seen while claiming that cellulite is a myth! WHAT. How could all my medical training and physiology not be true? Well, as it turns out, mainstream medicine has made quite a few mistakes.

Ashley was interesting to me because this line of work had fallen into her lap because of her own personal life struggle. In her 20s, she had gone into the hospital for a routine operation and contracted a life-threatening flesh-eating bacterial infection that forced her to undergo multiple surgeries and left her with disproportionate and unsightly fascia and muscle pain. She was left nearly crippled. Never fear! Ashley is a survivor and healed herself. She then decided to teach and heal others. She has years of experience training professional athletes, celebrities and other elite stars looking for solutions. She studied fascia extensively and created her wonderful and revolutionary product.

Again, cellulite is a fascia problem and not a fat problem. It has no bearance on what you weigh! After reading Ashley’s story, I promptly ordered the fascia blaster and patiently awaited its delivery.

How Do You Use the Fascia Blaster?

It’s simple! As you can see pictured above, there are three different kinds of blasters. The first one on the left is the full-size version while the middle one is the mini fascia blaster that fits perfectly in your carry-on suitcase. The last one on the right is the face blaster, which helps to define facial architecture and improve circulation. You simply place the blaster on the area you want to improve with the claws facing the skin. Move with quick movements in an up and down or side to side fashion, but try to avoid a circular motion. By scrubbing the Blaster over an area of fat that you want to break up, you can reduce unwanted fat pockets and “spot reduce” while contouring your body!

HINT: You Will feel some slight pain and discomfort! The claws are breaking up the taut connective tissue and fascia just below the skin. I BRUISED like no other the first month of using this thing 10 min daily after yoga or a hot shower. Personally, I found it to work best when the skin and muscles are warm. It is OK to bruise while blasting! Not everyone does and that’s just fine. However, what it does indicate is that the fascia is so restrictive that it is preventing proper circulation. This indicates that the lymphatic system is sluggish and proper blood flow is not reaching areas containing toxins! Remember blood and lymph move so that they can MOVE toxins out as well. Every part of our body needs to be nourished with proper blood flow. Once we break the fascia up, the blood flow can return to these neglected areas, but the aftermath might include some bruising!

This pic is after I had been blasting for nearly two months and is totally nothing compared to the bruising I got at the beginning!

The beauty of the Fascia Blaster is that it doesn’t treat just cellulite. It also helps give mobility to muscles, improves soft tissue pain, breaks up fat, and increase blood and lymph flow.

The Emotional Aftermath

So when I started blasting I had done my due diligence concerning the EMOTIONAL REASON we might have cellulite. What I did not expect was some of the emotional RELEASES I had from doing the fascia blaster daily. The first week, I would be right in the middle of blasting and would suddenly remember what my childhood kitchen floor looked like EXACTLY. They were random childhood memories that I could not recall prior to blasting. I have no explanation for, except that somehow this was connected to the saddlebags on my thighs! All jokes aside, this confirmed that thick thighs and cellulite possibly do represent repressed childhood memories of an oppressed upbringing. I even had a couple crying fits during that first week or two of blasting that was connected to deep pain that I could not fully put my finger on. The more I blasted, the less pain I felt. I could get deeper into the thicker layers with time and patience.

So the verdict is….I actually found a cellulite treatment that works! You can be sure to ditch all those creams and gimmicks that promise results but do not deliver. Today I’m happy to admit that I’m nearly cellulite free! It just takes trailblazers like Ashley Black’s revolutionary product as well as the dedication on our own parts.

This is the holy grail of cellulite destruction and the only tool you’ll ever need!

Fast Food Diet

Kapha Dosha: How Emotional Eating Can Cause Sinusitis

This is part 3 of my three part blog series on the three dosha in ancient Ayurveda Pitta, Vata and Kapha Dosha. We have discussed the two other mind-body types, Pitta and Vata. You may go back and read both part one and two posts in detail by clicking these links.

  1. http://drjess.com/pitta-dosha-why-you-should-be-dry-brushing-everyday-if-you-are-reactive/
  2. http://drjess.com/vata-dosha-why-you-should-not-eat-raw-foods-or-have-meaningless-sex-if-you-are-anxious/

Last but not least, it’s time to discuss the Kapha dosha.

Review of the Three Dosha

  1. Pitta-pitta is a mind body type that aligns with the summer. It is lively, competitive, first responder, spicy, and fire based. Pitta predominant constitutions usually have a muscular build, oilier skin, are prone to bleeding or ulcers and are very intelligent and quick witted. The organs most affected include the liver, eyes, and skin. To pacify pitta imbalances, one must eat a pitta satisfying diet of astringent/bitter herbs and cooling foods/spices.
  2. Vata-vata is a mind body type that aligns with autumn and winter. It is sweet, airy, fluid, expressive, agile, dry, changeable and movement based. Vata predominant constitutions usually have long extremities, drier skin, large eyes, are prone to anxiety and distractibility, and are grounded by heavier or sweeter foods. Their minds never stop. Imbalances lead to a different energy blockage and stagnation of proper prana flow. The organs most affected by a vata excess include the colon, lungs, and nervous system. To pacify vata imbalances, one must eat a vata pacifying diet to include sweeter and more grounding foods.
  3. Kapha-kapha is a mind body type that aligns with spring and winter. It is sweet, loyal, caring, grounded, and water/earth based. Kapha predominant constitutions usually have heavier set builds, glowing skin and lustrous hair, are prone to emotional eating and clinginess, and are supported by social interaction and exercise. Emotional eating and coveting can lead to stagnation of prana that causes heaviness and depression, affected certain organs. When imbalanced, Kapha predominant types can become clingy, stingy, controlling, lethargic, sluggish, have brain fog, laziness, and even depression. They often suffer from chronic bronchitis, mucus congestion, a thick, white coating on the tongue, and can become overly emotional. The organs most affected by a kapha imbalance include the sinus cavities, stomach, and lungs. To pacify kapha imbalances, one must eat a kapha dosha satisfying diet that avoids heavy or sweet foods. should be light/spicy and easily digestible. Stimulation, keeping warm and regular exercise are paramount for Kapha personalities.

Keep in mind that we are all born with all three dosha, but 1-2 usually predominate. Some people have all three in equal amounts and are rather balanced, however.

How Do I Know If I have a Kapha Imbalance? 

Many of us may be feeling sluggish due to the cold temperatures outside. After all, winter is partly Kapha season! Thats why we often hibernate inside our homes and gain weight during the holidays. Its hard not to emotionally eat with all the good food and family (that may or may not trigger emotions in us) around during this time of year. All of that can leave us feeling heavy, depressed or even fighting weight gain. You may also notice that you are prone to feeling stuffy, having phlegm, bronchitis symptoms or frequent sinusitis. This makes sense since Kapha is an earth and water mind body type, so adding heavy meals or feelings to the mix can make you feel cold and water logged. This contributes to mucus production. In fact, congestive heart failure is a sequelae of an out of balance kapha dosha. These patients are literally drowning in their own fluid.

Kapha have beautiful round faces, thick hair and white, shining teeth. They are a joy to be around when balanced. They are a bit more hesitant than the quick witted pitta, but once they have grasped a concept they never forget it. If you suspect that you are a Kapha dominant, it is important that your diet be very controlled and that you do not keep “cheat foods” in the house. If imbalanced, the downfall of Kapha is that they will eat their emotions, making this dosha very susceptible to weight gain. You may notice that these symptoms worsen in the colder months. 

Symptoms of a Kapha Imbalance include: excessive mucus and phlegm, thick and white coat on tongue, sluggish bowel movements, heavy build, brain fog especially in the morning, feeling sluggish, possessive, overly sentimental, stubborn, lazy, emotional eating, raw foods may worsen symptoms, craving highly processed foods, feeling stuck, depression. Since the organs associated with Kapha include the stomach, lungs and sinus cavities, it makes sense that these organs may show signs of dysfunction when Kapha is in excess. This water based dosha can cause stickiness and mucus in the respiratory tract and lead to improper digestion concerning the stomach. Of note, shame and grief are held in the lungs so often the overly sentimental Kapha types turn inward on themselves, leading to disease in these representative organs. 

How Do I Help To Correct a Kapha Imbalance? 

Like I always say, be your own best doctor. Nearly every imbalance in the body can be corrected if caught in time and especially when we are armed with the right knowledge, tools and determination! If the Kapha dosha resonates the most with you, there are some lifestyle and diet changes that can help to energize and revitalize your life, while bringing you back into balance.

When the lungs and respiratory tract becomes congested, this is a sign that we are not clearing toxins properly from our bodies. Heaviness is a sign of stagnate energy, or Prana flow. It is extremely important for Kapha’s to NOT eat when they are upset or feeling down. Do not use your emotions as justification for a “deserving” meal when you know you will not be happy with your decision later. You may also notice that you sink into the couch in the winter when you should be a bit more adventurous, or that cheese (although you love it), does not sit well with digestion. You may notice that you are easily hurt by others’ comments and this you often turn inward on yourself, which makes you more prone to feeling victimized, hiding from the world and self punishing behaviors. If you are experiencing some of these symptoms, you may notice that you can become clingy and possessive when these characteristics surface.

  1. Indian Triphala-Yes I listed this healthy digestive herbal under every dosha. It is a tridosha balancing herb used to encourage healthy elimination. If we closely examine each dosha, we see that each one has their respective organs in the digestive system. Pitta is the small intestines while Vata is the colon and Kapha is the stomach. When imbalanced, each affect proper digestion and elimination. Triphala is one of my favorite gentle laxatives to remove toxins and balance all three dosha. Not to mention it contains some of the highest vitamin C on the planet.
  2. Eat Foods that are Pungent, Bitter or Astringent in Flavor-kaphas are known to indulge in delicious food, however sometimes it is not exactly what is ideal for their mind and body type. Be sure to include ginger, coriander and turmeric to your daily dishes. Bitter herbs help to decrease water retention and bloating. Astringent herbs naturally help to purify the blood. As far as foods go, look for bitter melon, eggplant, fenugreek, leafy greens, barley, basil, nettle, jicama, aloe vera, green apples, pomegranate, pear, quinoa, and lentils.
  3. Try To Indulge in Warm Foods and Spices-Just like Vata, Kapha needs to lean towards warmer meals. Both Vata and Kapha are representative of cooler months and therefore, like to warm up! Raw food diets tend to exacerbate the stagnation of cold energy leading to depressed moods for Kapha. Look for warming spices as well as bitter and astringent. Think cinnamon, cardamom or cumin.
  4. HONEY-If you are not vegan, honey is your best friend as a Kapha! Honey is an excellent expectorant and coats the respiratory tract preventing infections. It can actually ward off upper respiratory infections or mucus production.Kapha Dosha - Dos & Don'ts
  5. Avoid Heavy Foods-as a Kapha, you do not want foods that are heavy in your stomach, take hours to digest or leave you feeling heavy. Avoid all the good stuff that we regret later like heavy oils, pasta, rich sauces, breads, puddings, refined sugar, processed foods, or heavy desserts. Kaphas, more so than any other dosha, should avoid dairy like the plague. Dairy CAUSES mucus production in someone who is already prone to it. This goes for the Ayurvedic staple, ghee as well.
  1. Break Away From Emotional Eating-Kaphas have very sensitive and slower digestive tracts so emotional eating will always be regretted later! You know what they say-a moment on the lips, forever on the hips. It is just not worth it! Try a new pattern when you feel upset or emotional. Go for a walk, go to a coffee shop, talk on the phone or keep yourself busy. Emotional eating can lead to heaviness and stagnant energy which can predispose you to the Kapha’s weakness-sinusitis and congestion. Remember that emotions pass and you can conquer your yo-yo eating by just doing something different.
  2. Get Out and MOVE! I can’t stress this enough. Often the thing we dread the most is the thing we need the most. Movement is key for a sluggish kapha. If you have been feeling down on yourself, heavy with brain fog and stuck in a routine, it is SO self loving to be brave enough to break out of that pattern. Be sure to give yourself 20-30 minutes of daily vigorous exercise. Ride a bike, run, do vinyasa yoga, hike, or any other challenging exercise is imperative for the Kapha.
  3. Be Mindful Of Clinginess and Separate Your Own Energy-An imbalanced kapha will often “covet” their possessions or even people. When feeling insecure, they can become controlling of things or those they care about. They come from a good place and often do not see themselves. If you have been feeling this way, be sure to set boundaries with people and possessions. Realize that the insecurity is from you and take back your own power by disengaging in any drama and needless worry. Don’t mix energies with loved ones as this can confuse you more.
  4. Daily Self Massage-also known as Abhyanga, this Ayurvedic practice relieves tension and balances bodies if the proper oils are used for each dosha. Abhyanga can nourish the body, increase immunity, decrease aging effects, and stimulate circulation. The best massage oils for a Kapha excess are warms oils, like sesame, almond, olive and even dusting powders before or after the massage such as Calamus powder.
  5. Keep Warm and Dry in All Seasons/Do Invigorating Activities-Kapha is cold and just like Vata, needs to be cognizant of staying warm throughout all seasons and climates. Also, be sure you are having fun everyday. Never lose your joy for life and let fear creep in to make you stagnant.

Happy Kapha Balancing!

Much Love

Dr Jess