May 052011
 

Question:
I recently have been diagnosed with diabetes (type 2, I believe) but also now have to inject insulin. Will I have to inject insulin for the rest of my life?

Answer:
You are raising a question that concerns at least one in two individuals worldwide—either that someone in their closest surroundings is affected or they don’t know yet that they too might be at risk of developing diabetes later in life.

Unfortunately, the way we are diagnosed and treated for diabetes mostly happens via high blood sugar (HBS) results. Yet, high blood sugar is a result not the cause of the disease!

Blood sugar imbalances may point to a lack of insulin production, genetic predispositions or of insulin resistance. Simplified, insulin levels determine the main difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
• Type 1 diabetes caused HBS levels can be due to certain genetic predispositions (such as gluten intolerance or full-blown celiac disease) or of hypoinsulinism (low or no insulin production).
• Type 2 diabetes caused HBS levels are mostly due to insulin resistance and much of the time involves hyperinsulinism (excess insulin levels or production).

Clearly, while HBS leads to a mainstream medicine diagnosis of diabetes, not all diabetics are alike nor should their condition be addressed alike.

However, most doctors simply follow the prescription recommendations of the pharmaceutical drug producers. Thus, prescription mostly is based on HBS results—not on insulin production levels.

Many type 2s, therefore, receive extra insulin (“to reduce their HBS levels”) despite their body already over-producing its own insulin and them having turned insulin resistant. No wonder, therefore, that even more unprocessed sugar is deposited in their fatty tissues, adding to weight gain, increased heart and kidney disease risk and, obviously, ever growing insulin resistance.

It surely defies logic to systematically prescribe additional insulin to every type 2 patient— possibly with already high insulin production levels—if they fail to control their blood sugar levels. On the other hand, genetic lack of insulin production seems to intuit the prescription of additional insulin.

Luckily, change in treatment approach is on the horizon. Increasingly, the medical system is starting to acknowledge shortcomings of its approach to diabetes. The focus is shifting from diagnosis and treatment approaches mainly based on HBS levels to one based on insulin production levels.

February 27, 2011 ScienceDaily reported the new availability of a simple home-based and stable urine test that measures the ability to produce insulin in patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes (source and date of availability in Canada unknown!).

The test was developed at the U.K. Peninsula Medical School by an Exeter-based team lead by Professor Andrew Hattersley and addresses urine C-peptide creatinine ratios. Read more

As a simple home test, this new test replaces multiple blood tests that would have to be taken at a hospital or lab. It is marketed particularly for its advantages to children. Unfortunately, this way of marketing devalues the test’s unique value as an important distinction tool between hypo and hyper insulin production.

Meanwhile, we patients bear the responsibility of pointing out to our GPs and endocrinologists the importance of insulin production level measurements (at different times of the day and over several days) before simply accepting their insulin injection prescriptions.

Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your body. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 6:18 PM
Apr 282011
 

Question: Recent studies claim that calcium supplements increase heart disease and stroke risk—particularly in women. Should I stop taking my calcium supplements?

Answer: Unfortunately, we tend to think of research trials and their results as infallible. Some research results may be confusing or, worse, represent a partial truth as the gospel. Many research projects may overlook important prerequisites.

For instance, the recent calcium research project fails to report on several highly important factors such as…
1) What forms of calcium supplements were taken and in what amounts?
2) Did the trial subjects have any pre-existing inflammatory conditions such as absorption issues (bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, etc.), liver or pancreas problems?
3) Since stress raises cortisol levels (an inflammatory hormone) what were the stress levels of the trial subjects?
4) Did the trial subjects have any pre-existing forms of arthritis and/or bone density issues?
5) Were the trial subjects all on the same diet and what kind of diet were they on?
6) What kind of exercise style and amount did the lifestyle of the trial subjects include?

Here are some indisputable facts:
Calcium plays a major role in the biochemistry of our body. But calcium is not solely the most important substance for our bone health. Among other tasks, calcium is instrumental in regulating the body pH balance by keeping down inflammation levels in the body.

So, how does calcium get into the arteries to cause heart or vascular disease? Inflammation makes body tissue acidic, a state that is untenable for the bloodstream. Consequently, calcium is leached from bones and teeth to buffer its acidic pH. But, once in the bloodstream, calcium won’t be reabsorbed back into the bones. Instead, it may…
• harden the arteries resulting in higher blood pressure
• contribute to plaque and hypertension by allowing triglycerides and cholesterols to build up in the arteries
• cause arthritic changes, pains and conditions by depositing dead calcium molecules in small or large joints.
• possibly cause muscle and other pain conditions (e.g. fibromyalgia, brain fog and vision issues)—think of calcium in the bloodstream of the body as “sand in the gears of an engine.”

So, it becomes clear that calcium belongs in the bones and out of the arteries. Heart disease and stroke may well be related to this leached calcium. However, it is highly questionable if excess blood calcium is directly related to supplemental calcium use.

Firstly, most individuals urged to use supplemental calcium suffer from some kind of pre-existing inflammatory condition. Bone loss, arthritis, etc. are direct indicators of natural calcium loss to buffer blood pH values as a result of chronic inflammation.

The calcium in the bloodstream of these individuals comes from their own bone and possibly not directly from their supplements. Calcium supplements need to be absorbed into the body via the small intestines (duodenum). But only calcium in citrate form or from nutritional greens is absorbable. Other forms—such as calcium carbonate, coral calcium, elemental calcium and many other forms—in addition to potentially contributing to kidney stones, may indeed end up contributing to heart events.

But, then again, even calcium citrate only gets absorbed if a person’s GI tract is intact and not experiencing any boating, gas or other inflammatory condition that may lead to nutritional malabsorption.

On another note, we often seem to forget that vitamin K besides being long esteemed as blood clotting factor also is instrumental in “keeping calcium in the bones and out of the arteries.” Many of the leafy green veggies provide vitamin K. But most of the usable vitamin K needs to be formed in our body’s intestinal tract (duodenum).

Consequently, the research conclusion that calcium supplementation raises the risk of heart disease simply indicates too superficial an approach.
Instead, research might want to look at the impaired function of an inflamed small intestinal duodenum as a possible cause of calcium and nutritional malabsorption (acidic pH), calcium leaching (leaky gut), lack of vitamin K production and other of its tasks such as bile release and pancreatic enzyme and insulin regulation as a cause for a raised risk of heart and vascular disease.

Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your body. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you make your decision or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 4:15 PM
Apr 062011
 

Instead of stressing how to live with and manage diabetes it is time to
Prevent and Avoid Diabetes!

Over 50 health conditions point to an increased risk of Diabetes 8 to 14 years before a possible diagnosis. These condition and approaches to avoid a future with diabetes are described in the Avoidiabetes Books by Rivkah Roth DO DNM®

See the newest numbers and report just released by the Canadian Government or read their April 4, 2011 Report…

 Posted by at 9:35 AM
Mar 282011
 

Question: I have read that using marijuana is less damaging to the body than alcohol consumption. – Anonymous.

Answer: I am happy that you have raised this topic. Sadly, the number of individuals regularly consuming this still illegal drug on a weekly or daily basis appears to be out of control. Despite its illegality, marijuana use in Canada puts it among the countries with the highest use in those ages fifteen and older.

Fortunately or unfortunately, we can find research to prove and justify or disprove just about any point. The comparison between long-term use of alcohol and marijuana you asked about nothing but proves this point. Both damage the body—just in different ways. Doesn’t really sound like a recommendation, does it?

From a natural medicine point of view (where health and overall wellbeing are our main concerns) there is simply no way to look at any drug use in a positive light—be it tobacco use, alcohol, marijuana, sleeping pills or other prescription and non-prescription meds.

Not prepared under controlled conditions, many toxic substances have been detected mixed in as dilatants such as powdered chalk, henna, glass, lead, turpentine, tranquilizers, glue, soil, engine oil, boot polish, animal feces… Today’s marijuana is not only easier attainable it is also many times more pure, concentrated and incomparably stronger than it was in the nineteen-sixties.

Let us take a closer look at how marijuana works in and on our body.

Research into its use for certain serious medical conditions shows its effect on the region of the brain that affects the brain’s ability to make good judgment calls. It, therefore, does not surprise that its side effects reach from sleepiness to decreased short-term memory (thus sensation of euphoria) to mood swings, paranoia, even hallucinations.

Dry mouth, red eyes and other (including intestinal) mucus issues may be traced to its same retarding actions on the body’s metabolism as does its action that impairs perception and motor skills.

Smoked, it first affects the lungs; taken orally, the gastrointestinal system where it interferes with the metabolic and digestive action of the body as well as the calcium metabolism.

Marijuana’s active components are highly soluble in lipids (fats) and thus can build up and remain in the body tissue for days and weeks. This accumulation in the body’s fatty tissue particularly affects all brain and nerve cells. And, since nerve cells control the function and performance of all our organs and mechanisms, there are few body cells and functions that are not negatively affected by marijuana use.

Links of regular use to cancer are strong, so are these to GI issues and mental disorders, even schizophrenia. From my clinical experience, I am also noting remarkably higher rates of low libido, erectile dysfunction and infertility among younger couples who use marijuana recreationally or daily.

However we look at it, feeling good comes from achievements and active participation in life not from sitting back and delving in passive brain stimulants or retardants.

Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your body. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you make your decision or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 5:32 PM
Mar 282011
 

Q: My partner once again has worms but doesn’t seem to be able to tolerate the meds prescribed by the doctor. What natural medicine remedies are there?

A: From your question I gather that this is not the first time your partner is plagued by parasites. Intestinal parasites in humans are quite common given a conducive intestinal environment or a lowered immune system.
Short of passing worms in the stool these are the symptoms to look for:
• distended lower abdomen
• bloating or gas
• abdominal pain
• weight loss
• hunger pangs despite eating
• borborygmus (growling tummy)
• stomach pain or tenderness particularly around the navel area,
• nausea or vomiting
• itching around rectum or vulva especially at night
• tiredness and anemia
• dark rings around the eyes.

If you suspect or have found intestinal parasites the approach is two-pronged.

Firstly, get the kind of parasites identified. Not every kind of worm needs the same approach and remedies. Sometimes several stool samples are needed for this. Also, to avoid negative findings, make sure the lab you are using is specialized in handling parasites.

The quickest way to get rid of parasites is with conventional remedies from your pharmacy. Since these remedies kill worms but not larvae, in Europe, we always repeat these medications ten to fourteen days later in order to get rid also of the next generation before they have the opportunity to multiply.

Be prepared: the greater the parasite load the greater the amount of toxins released by the dying off worms. Feeling nauseous after taking prescription medication thus is to be expected. This is where natural medicine comes into play.

Secondly, key to avoid these unwanted guests is to create an intestinal environment hostile to them. Intestinal parasites thrive on anything sugar, including alcohols, fruit juice and refined carbohydrates such as breads, pasta, etc. Thus, avoid processed foods.

In addition, several foods have traditionally been used to create an intestinal climate hostile to new parasite development:
• Eat pumpkin seeds, carrots, beetroots, raw garlic, pomegranates (with seeds not juiced), papaya seeds, barberries, fennel seed.
• Up your Vitamin C to 2000 mg or to tolerance in form of chewable tablets (for better oral versus intestinal absorption).
• Drink ample fresh and non-chlorinated water to keep well hydrated and remove the toxins.

Natural medicine also uses a variety of herbs and traditional Chinese herbal medicines to help expel parasites. However, these remedies should be used under the guidance of a qualified practitioner only.

Once you are rid of the parasites, replenish your intestinal flora with good quality probiotics and stick to your fresh food lifestyle, i.e. keep avoiding sugars and processed foods, to keep new worms at bay.

Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your digestive system. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you make your decision or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 3:10 PM
Mar 262011
 

Question: I have a lot of friends that drink. I am looking for a good explanation on why alcohol is good/bad for you. S.T.

Answer: The mere fact that you are asking about alcohol consumption shows me that your “gut feeling” tells you that alcohol may not work for you, or a member of your family, or your friends.

1) Not every one tolerates alcohol the same.
Women, in particular, have a considerably lower alcohol tolerance (i.e. on average one glass of wine is the maximum for women vs. two for men).
Smaller built individuals as well as the young and the elderly also appear to have a lower tolerance for alcohol.

2) All alcohols turn to sugar (alcohol itself IS a sugar). – It’s not about the juice you drink with it!
Alcohol % proof directly refers to the drink’s sugar content.
The amount of sugar (or carbohydrates) the body needs to be converted into energy with the help of insulin must come from food not alcohol.

3) Excess sugar in the body causes inflammation and, thus, disturbs the body’s calcium metabolism (calcium leaching from bones to buffer the body’s pH value).
In addition, all sugars (including alcohol) nourish cancer cells, yeast cells, etc.

4) Individuals with a history of heart burn, midriff (liver or pancreas) or gut problems and those with a family history of high cholesterol or triglyceride levels, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, etc. should stay away from ALL alcohols.

Beer:
Due to its gluten content from malt (barley) beer primarily affects the gut by causing intestinal inflammation (bloating) and prompting the duodenum to slow down the digestive metabolism.
Beer also taxes the pancreas (insulin production) and stresses the liver.
A healthy liver is able to regulate the blood sugar (BS). However, the alcohol-triggered blood sugar roller coaster forces the liver to produce glycogen (a natural form of sugar) leading to insulin resistance.
The proverbial beer belly is the first visual sign of starting insulin resistance and an increased future risk of diabetes, heart or kidney disease!

Liquors / Hard Alcohols:
Booze directly affects the liver and, over time, may lead to serious liver disease, hepatitis, etc. in addition to paving the way to blood sugar fluctuations, high blood pressure and artery or heart disease.
Many spirits are made from grain and thus may want to be avoided by individuals who are gluten-intolerant.

Wine:
The only alcoholic beverage that shows some positive results in medical research in certain individuals is one glass of preservative- and sulfate-free red wine as consumed by the French and Italians daily and WITH food.
Higher levels of resveratrol (a high antioxidant) build up over time. However, the European lifestyle is totally different from ours here as well.

Other than the conditions mentioned above, you also might want to avoid alcohol if you experience many other problems including acne, allergies, immune deficiency syndromes, decreased libido or infertility; for women also painful menses or polycystic ovaries and for men erectile dysfunction.
Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your digestive system. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you make your decision or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 8:06 PM
Jan 032011
 

About the Central Role of the Duodenum

I have mentioned it before but it might not hurt seeing it in writing again…

  •  How well our digestion works determines how well our body and brain function.
  • The mucous lining in our intestines hosts the majority of our body’s lymph and immune system cells. This directly affects toxin drainage and defense from communicable diseases.
  • Inflammation anywhere in the body causes an acidic environment and triggers the calcium buffering mechanism: Calcium is forced to leach from bones and teeth into the blood stream in an attempt to balance the pH value.
  • Leached calcium plays a major role in bone loss (osteoporosis), calcium build-ups, heart disease (hardened arteries, high blood pressure / hypertension), various forms of arthritis, brain fog, vision issues, fibromyalgia, and many other conditions.

The first part of the small intestines following the stomach is the duodenum. A healthy and properly functioning duodenum…   

attaches to the…

  • anterior lumbar spine SI region (!!!).—To all osteopaths, chiropractors, body workers: you cannot expect a structurally stable low back and pelvic region until the gut is free of inflammation!
  • diaphragm (via the ligament of Treitz), possibly leading to signs of shortness of breath, GERDS, heartburn, tiredness, restless or light sleep, anxiety, etc.

controls…

  • how much and how often food is released from the stomach for absorption in the intestines.
  • bile release from gallbladder and prompts several other digestion-related liver functions.
  • enzyme release from the pancreas.

plays a role in the…

  • control of insulin production.

absorbs…

  • calcium and a majority of all other minerals and nutrients.

produces…

  • vitamin K (which then is stored in the pancreas and is responsible for calcium to remain in the bones and out of the arteries!!).

and…, and…, and…

Any or all of this does not function if we experience chronic or acute inflammation, bloating, dysbiosis (leaky gut syndrome), etc. or have been diagnosed with lazy stomach, irritable bowel (IBS, IBD), Crohn’s, GSE (gluten sensitive enteropathy), Celiac Disease (CD), or other gastrointestinal conditions.

The “Proof is in the Pudding”

After bariatric surgery (bypasses the duodenum and part of the jejunum) 90 to 95% of the patients no longer show signs of diabetes but suffer from the same mineral deficiencies a celiac would typically expect due to inability of duodenal absorption.

If you experience bloating or gas on a fairly regular basis or carry the proverbial “beer-belly” or a “spare tire” it is time to consult your doctor or a well qualified natural medicine professional.

 Posted by at 12:06 PM