Tag Archives: supplements

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The Genetics Excuse

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A lot of people that I come into contact with truly believe that within their family history lies their fate. In other words, because in their family history there are instances of  heart disease, arthritis or cancer, there is nothing that they can do to prevent themselves from getting these diseases.

While it’s true that some of us carry genes that make us more susceptible to cancer, heart disease,and diabetes just to name a few, it is also true that for these genes to cause disease, they must be turned ON. In fact recent research has shown that genetics contributes only about 30% to disease susceptibility while an individual”s environment contributes upwards of 70%. So, as long as these genes are turned OFF, you are safe.

Now, you might be asking yourself, what is it that turns these switches “ON”?

The answer is several factors contribute:

  • STRESS
  • PHYSICAL TRAUMA
  • ENVIRONMENTAL TOXINS
  • NUTRITION

At True Health, we address all of these factors with our patients from the initial visit. Through specific chiropractic adjustments, we correct and restore normal structure/function to your spine and nervous system resulting from years of repetitive stress, tension, and countless traumas. Through our purification program, we eliminate toxins stored in your body from the air that we breathe, the food that we eat, and the water that we drink. And finally, we offer easy to implement nutritional advice and high quality whole food supplements.

The truth is that our genes are being changed moment by moment by the environment of our thoughts and feelings as well as the environment of our families, homes, work, friends and where we live. We assign mental and emotional meaning to facts that are as important to gene activation as the facts themselves. Even the thoughts you are having about the coming week are wired into your brain and act as stimulus for genetic expression.

Environmental changes that make it easier for people to overeat, and harder for people to get enough physical activity, have played a key role in triggering the recent surge of preventable disease. So, if we become more aware that our environment – the physical, social, political, and economic surroundings – greatly influences how much we eat and how active we are. We can continue living our life the same way, or we can make a change now to ensure good health for years to come.

The Bottom Line

What science tells us is that healthy environments and lifestyles can counteract any gene-related risks.

What you can do:  maintain normal structural alignment coupled with a healthy lifestyle so that your body is the best it can be to throw off potential illness.


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7 Ways to Stay Well This Winter

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The key to staying well in the winter is treating your body well and feeding it what it needs to fight off invaders and not let them get a toehold. Remember, your body is an incredible complex of systems, and your behaviors and choices will determine the health and vitality of those systems, especially the immune system. Here’s a roundup of my favorite, easy-to-incorporate wellness tips to help keep your defenses strong all winter long:

1. Eat (or Drink) Your Greens

The more dark, leafy greens you can work into your diet, the better. All that good green stuff is filled with fiber, which is exactly what your good gut bacteria love to feast on. And, when our good bacteria are well-fed, they’re armed and fortified to help keep your immunity high. Greens also supply you with nutrient-dense antioxidants and phytonutrients so you can power through the day without a caffeine or sugar drip. Add fresh leafy greens to breakfast, lunch and dinner, drink smoothies and keep a supply of high-quality greens powder in your fridge or at the office so you can stir up a glass of immunity-supporting greens anytime.

2. Be Well Adjusted

Chiropractic care helps us to stay well by impacting our immune system. In our bodies there are numerous modes of communication between the nervous system and the immune system. The nervous system has a direct effect on the immune system due to the nerve supply to the important immune system organs. As chiropractors, we have a direct influence over the nervous system. We now know through research that chiropractic care has beneficial effects on immunoglobulins, B-lymphocytes (white blood cells), pulmonary function and other immune system processes.

3. Stay Hydrated

This is an easy one to follow in the summer, but come winter, you may not feel as parched. However, staying hydrated is still crucial to keeping your body running at its best. Keeping yourself well-watered throughout this season is equally important. Staying well-hydrated helps thin the mucus in your lungs and sinuses, making it easier for your body to clear the sludgy stuff out of your system — so in addition to lots of water cozy up to soothing herbal teas, hot water with lemon and hot, healthy beverages until the warmer weather returns.

4. Listen To Your Mom

Frequent hand-washing, using soap and hot water and rubbing vigorously for about half a minute, is crucial. Virtually any shared item – such as printers, copy machines, the office fridge handles, restroom door knobs, pens and touch screens at the grocery store, elevator buttons and so on – are excellent places to pick up whatever ills may be going around, so wash hands frequently  – not with the antibacterial stuff – and keep your paws away from your nose and mouth until you’re able to wash up.

Keep surfaces clean, wiping them down frequently with non-toxic green cleaners. That goes double if you’ve got school-aged kids bringing home tons of germs every day. Also make sure the kids get into the hand-washing groove as soon as they cross the threshold.

5. Fill in the Gaps

When it comes to fighting off seasonal ills, I believe in stacking the immunity deck and giving your body a helping hand. My go-to winter wellness arsenal includes: A daily, high-quality probiotic: Packed with billions of organisms to keep your gut — which houses most of your immune system — in top form. Vitamin D3: Vitamin D plays a vital role in our immune system and its ability to fight off pathogens. Here in New England- from October to April we recommend supplementing Vitamin D-3 from a whole food source. It is important to use a bioavailable whole food form of vitamin D, complete with the amino acids and sterols, because this will help catalyze mineral utilization and absorption. Elderberry extract: Elderberry is the winter season go-to for all ages, especially children as it tastes great. It’s an antiviral herb that supports immune function with an affinity for the respiratory tract and is rich with Vitamin C and packed with flavonoids.

6. Get Outside

Granted, you’ll need to bundle up, but take a few minutes every day when the sun is visibly shining to have a brief wintertime sunbath. Doing so will help regulate your circadian rhythms (a.k.a. your sleep/wake cycle) — which impacts everything from your body temperature to your hormones to your weight — and help lift your spirits (improved mood helps boost immunity). You’ll also boost your Vitamin D levels.

7. Keep Moving in the Cold

You don’t have to go outside to move more throughout the day. Try fashioning a DIY standing desk or workstation or simply do a few laps around the office when you can as the weather cools. Try a workout at home, have a dance party, play with your kids, anything to get your body moving in the winter.


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Avoid the “Health Halo”

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Avoid the health haloWho would have thought that buying healthy food would become so difficult. These days, what you think you know about which products to select or how to read food labels often times turns out to be misconceptions. There are a number of health sounding terms that can confuse even the most educated shoppers. This is what is referred to as a health halo effect.

A “health halo” is the perception that a food is healthy, whether it truly is or not. This usually involves cleaver marketing and using buzz words such as all-natural, organic, paleo, gluten free, and/or non-GMO. While some of these products may be healthy – the majority are just processed junk food – albeit  organic, gluten-free junk food.

Marketers use these buzz words for a reason – research has shown that putting an organic label on ordinary foods can trick shoppers into paying up to 23 per cent more for them by believing they are healthier and taste better. Most of us aren’t intentionally buying junk food – we may just believe the hype that a food is healthy. After all, we’re just looking for healthy food to feed our families.

Instead of focusing on these labels – do the opposite – aim to fill 3/4 of your grocery cart with food that does NOT contain labels (as in, fruits and vegetables). When you see health claims, be skeptical – they’re only there to help sell a product (the front of the box is there to persuade – not inform). One of the many positives of eating whole REAL foods is that you know exactly what’s in them. And remember, if you anything with that green USDA-Organic stamp, you will be eating GMO-free food.

Lastly, the fact that you now know that there is a “health halo” will help you avoid it (your welcome).


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What To Look For In A Chiropractor

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look for

It’s a wonderful thing that this blog reaches a wide range of people all across the globe every day. With that being said, I often receive an email or phone call asking for a recommendation for a Chiropractor in a certain area of the country.

As with any profession, some chiropractors may be more skilled and experienced than others and as you will come to realize there are numerous techniques and approaches, with some chiropractor using manual or traditional chiropractic, while others use instruments. Quality of training, specificity of approach, and facility all play a part in the outcome you might have. For example, if looking for a specialized field (pediatrics, pregnancy, athletes) be sure that the doctor has advanced training in those areas.

As a general guideline, it’s probably best to consider a chiropractor who focuses on being GREAT at one thing instead of giving advice and utilizing procedures that are outside of their scope. Ask your chiropractor what he or she does before becoming a patient.  As a structural chiropractor, my responsibility is to detect and correct underlying structural abnormalities of the spine, provide specific structural corrective adjustments, counsel patients on nutrition, exercise and injury prevention without the use of drugs or surgery.

To further assist those looking to begin chiropractic care, I’ve complied a list of what to look for when doing your research:

They Focus on CHIROPRACTIC.

Although chiropractic school taught me how to utilize physical therapy modalities I can honestly tell you that I don’t even remember how to operate one. Furthermore, I respect the physical therapy profession enough that I’d be stepping on their toes by providing physiotherapy services that I can’t even perform well. Instead, I like to focus on what I know – structural correction.

In addition, while we may occasionally recommend a nutritional supplement to get you the best results in the quickest amount of time – be wary of an office that “pushes” products on you – especially ones that utilizes multi-level marketing and/or want you to sign up with their company.

They Use Objective Findings.

An initial history and examination are great, and will help the doctor to form an understanding of what is going on, but it doesn’t allow you to see everything. Objective tests help monitor your care and specifically identify areas of concern. These can include spinal analysis, postural assessment, digital neuromyographic scan, and structural radiographs. These tests allow your chiropractor to identify any damage, the degree of damage, and any underlying structural changes that need addressing.

You Receive a Customized Care Plan.

While a cookie cutter approach is great for making cookies, it doesn’t necessarily translate to other pursuits (like your HEALTH). You should receive customized chiropractic care based on YOUR individual needs. This way, you have a direction where you are going, a time frame to achieve your results, and all the costs associated with your care.

Everyone is unique and has different issues affecting their care, which is why a cookie cutter approach doesn’t work. Sometimes people respond right away or may be longer depending on how long the cause has been there. Every patient does not need a 1 year care plan, nor do they all need to be seen 3x/week, then 2x/week, etc..

They Care About YOU as a Patient.

Are you a number or a patient? It doesn’t take long to figure this one out. Are you rushed through your appointment without the time to address questions or concerns? Your chiropractor should routinely monitor your progress and ask for feedback. Progress assessments give the doctor feedback as to how you are progressing and allow the doctor to adapt your care plan to how you are responding.

They Willingly Collaborate with Other Practitioners.

Working collaboratively with other healthcare providers for the benefit of the patient is enriching for both the patient as well as practitioners. My own work is often done in concert with physicians, midwives, surgeons and physical therapists. This team approach offers patients an opportunity to get a second opinion as well as provide a different set of eyes in case there are other structural problems that need to be addressed.

You Begin to HOLD Your Adjustment.

The best thing about someone with Normal Structure is that it allows their spine to be stable. When the structural alignment of someone’s spine goes back to normal and it is stable, they are in a position of “Holding” their correction. When someone is holding their correction, then they are in a great place called neurologically clear and there is no reason to adjust. An adjustment is such a powerful procedure when done correctly, but can delay someone’s healing if not done properly or is done too often. The body is strong enough and intelligent enough to maintain a proper Structural Alignment – that’s why the goal that I have for each and every person that begins care with me is to get them to the point where they don’t need an adjustment.

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You Are As Old As Your Spine

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aging spine

Aging is not just the number of years you’ve inhabited planet Earth, but rather the degree of wear and tear your body, brain, and vital organs are expressing at a given point in time.Ronesh Sinha, MD

A spine with too much, too little, or improper movement directly affects the wiring and firing of nerves that come from your brain and travel down your spinal cord. Your brain and spinal cord act like the world’s most powerful computer chip which requires a proper information and power supply to work properly. Movement of the spine dictates how information is received in the brain through tiny little nerve ending’s called mechanoreceptors. The spine also houses critical nerves, arteries, and veins that carry food and waste in and out of the brain and spinal cord.

This is why – regardless of disease or symptoms – a healthy, properly moving, aligned spine is so essential to our health. By restoring motion to the spine (via the chiropractic adjustment), changes will begin to occur, such as: decrease in stress signals and stress hormones, decrease inflammation, and pain (if present) will subside. Most important of all, it results in a healthy body-brain neurological communication which is essential for overall health.

When it comes to your spine – the things we do on a daily basis are either moving us towards a healthy spine or away from health and towards a degenerating spine. Research shows that a joint (aka your spine) that has lost a degree of its normal movement will begin degenerating at a rate measurable within one week of onset. It’s important to realize that this degenerative process will continue, often painlessly, until significant degeneration has occurred. This is a big reason why you don’t need to be in pain to have chiropractic care in our office.

The following are the good and bad in keeping your spine as young as possible:

The Good

  • Periodic chiropractic checkups – Regardless of symptoms, the research shows we are much healthier with a properly moving spine than without.
  • Stretch regularly – Consider how inflexible most people are – how do you think they got that way? Muscles abide by the “use it or lose it” principle. Avoid this fate by isolating key muscle groups and giving them a good daily stretch (Patients in our office receive customized stretches based on their individual needs).
  • Proper hydration – Your spine and its supportive structures work best when they’re hydrated. Most people will not drink enough water to replace their original fluid deficit, and this problem is exacerbated with age.
  • Daily exercise Ideally we should be spending a good portion of our days walking, standing and moving in general. If we don’t our bodies rebel and health declines. Do some form of exercise that significantly raises your heart rate for 30 minutes at least four times a week.
  • Supportive sleep environment – Your bed and pillow should both help keep your body in natural alignment. Dated and flimsy mattresses stress your hips, pelvis, and back, which inevitably lead to chronic pain. Buy a quality pillow that keeps your head level, and use a good mattress that firmly (yet comfortably) prevents your spine from dipping or sagging while you sleep.
  • Be mindful of your posture – This applies to whatever you’re doing, whether you’re at work, home, in the car, at the gym, or simply standing up. Good posture has benefits; poor posture has consequences.
  • Proper nutrition –  A nutrient-rich diet with a diversity of plants, healthy proteins and high quality, healthy fats actually feed and nourish your genes, slowing the degenerative process.

The Bad

  • Poor general posture (slouching) – With proper postural awareness, you can save years of wear and tear on the spine, and maintain full function of the delicate nervous system.
  • Sedentary lifestyle – A study done in over 2,000 identical twins who carry the same genetic material showed that the more active twins had longer, healthier telomeres than their genetically identical siblings.  The most active twins had genes that appeared 9 years younger than their inactive siblings. Spend less time on your computer/phone and move daily.
  • Stress – Chronic stress promotes inflammation and oxidative damage that is inflicted upon DNA, which increases disease risk and accelerates aging.
  • Sleeping on your stomach – Having your head and neck turned to one side while sleeping can significantly strain the muscles and ligaments of the spine. Repeatedly doing so every night for years slowly adds pressure to the joints and nerves, contributing to spinal degeneration and allowing for the development of a variety of health problems.
  • Neglecting your spine by not getting periodic chiropractic checkups – By restoring motion and removing nerve interference – you can begin to function how you were designed to.

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