Vibrant Sexual Health for Ladies!

sexual health

I decided to broach this topic…. well because it’s a big topic, Half of all ladies live without optimal sexual function and reduced libido.  Truth is… at ANY age, a woman’s sexual function and her libido depend on having healthy “biochemical pathways”.

A woman’s loss of sexual vitality is related to a number of key issues, including below optimal levels of “sex hormones, i.e. estrogen, progesterone, testosterone”, neurotransmitters, and nitric oxide; and INCREASED levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and monoamine oxidase.

There are a couple of herbal remedies that go widely over-looked for assisting in this category.

  • Cordyceps:  Which is a fungus herb that also contains the larval remains from the caterpillar larva on which it grows.  Though like reishi and shiitake mushrooms it strengthens the immune system, and helps to build strength and endurance.  It’s fabulous for strengthening a sore back and dealing with issues like “sciatic”, wheezing, chronic cough, impotence and menopause.

The mushroom extract modulates the levels of sex hormones and promotes their downstream flow; boosts mitochondrial energy and sex interest by increasing adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production;  supports vaginal lubrication and sexual function by promoting nitric oxide; and inhibits pro-inflammatory cytokines that can blow out the flame of sexual desire.  There have been some placebo-controlled studies, scientists have documented that Cordyceps improved sexual function and desire in 86% of ladies in just 40 days of use.

  • Maca:  Falls in the category of an adaptagen, it’s an extract of the plants root, It has the reputation as an aphrodisiac, strengthening sexual desire and performance in both the gents and the ladies.  It has also been called Peruvian ginseng, because it is an overall general tonic and adaptagen, helping to reduce stress and increase general health and energy.  a bonus is it helps with mental concentration too.

This herb has been cultivated for over 2,000 years, and the root extract has been shown to modulate levels and flow of sex hormones; support adrenal function; and promote libido and sexual pleasure by helping to optimize brain neurotransmitters and monoamine oxidase (MAO) levels.  Women who took Maca scored over 35% better than placebo subjects on a standard sexual function and libido scale after just 6 weeks!

MENOPAUSE RELIEF AND ENHANCED SEXUAL HEALTH

Menopausal transition is considered the most difficult time for ladies to remain sexually active.  In addition to struggling with hot flashes and fatigue, vaginal dryness and loss of sex drive, bone density loss, interrupted sleeping patterns, mood swings. another natural addition to assist the changes your body is rolling through is something called Natural Changes:  Which includes 5 different herbal and nutrient combinations in each packet.

Remember when the body exhibits symptoms that are out of the norm, at the heart of any of them are nutritional deficiencies and/or overloads, bringing balance nutritionally is what assists YOUR body to bring back inner harmony.

Incorporating other lifestyle changes as well is also paramount, like healthy eating by consuming a higher quota of fresh fruits & vegetables, reducing fried foods, high refined sugary foods, reducing caffeine intake as well as alcohol intake which can trigger hot flashes and contribute to emotional agitation.

Reduce your use of plastics with your foods, like water bottles, and anything oil based that is in plastic bottles, as this increases the entrance of “xenoestrogens” into the body causing an estrogen overload which emphasizes hotflashes, and can contribute to estrogen fed cancers.

Avoid products that contain Methy/poly parabens in your health & beauty products especially soaps, lotions and shampoos/conditioners. Nail polish and polish removers also add adverse chemical cocktails towards causing hormonal imbalance as well as bringing a heavy toxic load on the body.

Embarking on some form of daily exercise to keep bones strong, stimulate lymphatic system, and keep muscles firm all play their important role in keeping us ladies healthier as our body’s transition into this glorious zone!

Quit drinking soda’s especially DIET soda, the artificial sweeteners used in those actually do the opposite of why most folks drink them, thinking because they are called DIET, they won’t make them pack on the pounds! That couldn’t be further from the truth, those sugars actually pump up your fat cells, and they are considered to be “excite-neurotoxins”, they are not healthy for your nervous system, contribute to migraine headaches and the detox symptoms that many go through when taking them out of their daily routine can be brutal for some.

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

QFA Clinician, Orthomolecular Nutritionist,

Harvested Health LLC

All of the herbal products mentioned in this article can be obtained at http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com

References:

  1. J Sex Med. 2010;7(4);1598-1607
  2. 2. J Alt Complement Med. 1998;4(3); 289-303
  3. 3. Menopause. 2008 Nov-Dec;12(6);1157-62
  4. 4. Phytother Res. 2011;doi:10,1002/ptr3597

Why Can’t My Hormones Play Nice Together?

female hormones

There seems to be an almost epidemic of ladies who are suffering from hormonal imbalance.   PMS, to Endometriosis, Menopause seem to be plaguing ladies of all ages. These hormonal imbalances can also contribute to some of the female cancers too.

When you get a hormone panel done what are they looking for?
Estradio (E2): there needs to be a correct balance between estrogen and progesterone. It is one of the critical factors for maintaining hormonal health.  Estradiol is needed for proper function of progesterone receptors.  High estradiol levels may also compete with T3, a thyroid hormone at the T3 responsive gene sites and interfere with the tissue activity of T3 contributing to hypothyroidism.  High estradiol levels can also increase Thyroid Binding  Globulin levels, which bind up free T3 and T4 hormone, resulting in decreased tissue action of T3.  Having low estradiol levels post-menopause may be because of adrenal dysfunction since post-menopausal production of estradiol comes by conversion from the adrenal hormone DHEA.

Progesterone: enhances the sensitivty of estrogen receptors.  Even with normal E2 levels progesterone deficiency contributes to, or exacerbates, estrogen deficiency symptoms.

  • Estradiol & progesterone, put the two ratio levels together for an index of their balance.  IF there is an overload of estradiol, over progesterone, this can explain a whole bunch of symptoms in reproductive age ladies like endometrial hyperplasia, pre-menstrual syndrome, fibrocystic breasts, and uterine fibroids.  When estrogen supplements are prescribed without the balancing effects of progesterone, a deficiency in progesterone can result.  Some of the symptoms of estronge dominance include:
    weight gain in the hips and thighs
    fibrocystic & tender breasts
    uterine fibroids
    irritability
    water retention
    thyroid imbalance
  • Estrogen dominance can lead to cancers of the uterus and breasts and insulin resistance.  Low estradiol levels happening at the onset of menopause can trigger a host of symptoms including:
    hot flashes
    night sweats
    vaginal dryness
    sleep disturbances
    foggy thinking
    rapid skin aging and bone loss
    It is important to maintain proper levels of estradiol balanced with progesterone at any age for optimal hormonal health

What about “testosterone?  Unbalanced testosterone can lead to hormonal disrution whether levels are deficient or excessive.  If the testosterone is elevated:
ovarian cysts
polycystic ovarian syndrome
excessive facial hair
acne
oily skin and hair
These symptoms are usually an indicator that you may be rocking elevated testosterone levels.
Low testosterone can be brought on by excessive stress, certain medications, contraceptives, and surgical removal of ovaries.  Some of the symptoms of testosterone deficiency include:
low sex drive
thinning skin
vaginal dryness
bone loss (osteoporosis)
loss of muscle tone
depression
memory issues
What is the Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG)?  It is a protein produced by the liver when exposed to any type of estrogen.  This exposure can include estrogen produces naturally by the body or consumed as a synthetic like oral contraceptive estrogen, estrogen therapy, or as foods , also referred to as xenoestrogens.  The Sex Hormone Binding Globulin binds tightly to circulating estradiol and testosterone.  This prevents rapid metabolism and clearance and limits their bioavailability to tissues.  SHBG gives a good index of the extent of the body’s overall exposure to estrogens.
DHEA sulphate is produced by the adrenal glands and generally reflects the adrenal gland function.  DHEA is usually present in larger amounts than all the other steroid hormones as it is the precursor for estrogen and testosterone production. DHEA levels peak in late teens to early 20’s and then naturally decline as we age.  Cortisol and DHEA have opposite effects on immune function and insulin regulation.  When cortisol levels are increased, more DHEA is required to be released to balance the effects of elevated cortisol.  Thus, chronically elevated cortisol levels can result in a lack of DHEA.  Low DHEA can bring out a decrease in sex drive and feeling sluggish, where as high DHEA can have a masculinizing effect because it metabolizes into testosterone.
Low DHEA levels can be connected:
hypothyroidism
lupus
rheumatoid arthritis
Cortisol levels portray overall adrenal function and indicate exposure to stressors.  Healthy adrenal cortisol production is highest early in the morning, soon after waking and then falls to lower levels at mid-day and continues to decrease into the evening.  Low cortisol levels can indicate adrenal fatigue (meaning your ability to respond to stress is reduced), it can leave the body more vulnerable to poor blood sugar regulation and immune system weakness.  Chronically high cortisol is a result of constant exposure to stressors, and can pose a serious long-term effect on the quality of one’s health including:
higher cancer risk
osteoporosis
Alzheimer’s disease
Elevated cortisol levels can also interfere with the action of progesterone and testosterone at gene regulatory sites.  Which long story short, can lead to estrogen dominance.  Excess cortisol can cause significant bone loss, depression, exhaustion, muscle wasting, brain fog, impaired thyroid function.
When you go for a Female Hormone panel these are the elements they will be checking for.  Saliva testing is one of the most accurate as far as I am concerned professionally.  Contact me and I can put you in touch with a lab that offers this form of testing, or check with your OBGYN and see if they work with a lab that offers Saliva testing, it will also fall under the label of bioidentical hormone testing.

Realizing these hormones need to be in balance is important.  So ladies, reading stuff that are marketed for female hormone disorders and taking “ONE” thing, i.e. hot flashes, means you are not dealing with the issue, just trying to get rid of the hotflashes isn’t going to fix the imbalance, there is a nutritional deficiency going on and you need to address the whole picture not just one sentence on the proverbial page. Rather than feel like you are spitting in the wind, put the whole sequence back into balance.

Hormones are chemical messengers in the body, they have to work together in tandem.  If one is trying to over-power the other you will exhibit unpleasant symptoms.

If any of the symptoms I’ve shared describes what you may be dealing with, and if you’d like to approach this from a nutritional/natural perspective, I’d be honored to work with you.  You can go to http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc and sign up for a 1 hr. consult which can be done in my office, or via e-mail consultation, or phone consultation.  If you are local and want an in office consultation we can also do a QFA Analysis where we work with your (urine & saliva) to paint a clearer picture of what is going on nutritionally to achieve better balance.

Hope this was able to shed some light.
Healthfully yours,
Jodi Barnett N.D. (Doctor of Naturopathy)
QFA Clinician, Orthomolecular Nutritionist

Harvested Health LLC

http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com (high quality whole food herbs/supplements)

http://www.facebook.com/harvestedhealth

 

 



Emotional Support – Using Flower Essence Remedies

bleeding_heart-1024x285

 

Dr. Bach was an English medical doctor who also practiced homeopathy. He was dissatisfied with how medicine treated symptoms, while ignoring the welfare of the patient as a whole. In his search to find a gentler method of healing he developed Bach Flower Remedies, in 1930. He believed illness resulted in a conflict between the emotions and that this “internal war” leads to negative moods and energy blocking, which causes a lack of “harmony” and leads to physical diseases.

THE BEAUTY OF PLANTS:

Plants have been used fro medicinal purposes from the beginning. Bach, however, makes distinction between plants that relieve symptoms  and those that contain genuine healing ability.

The flower, in which all the essential energies of the plant have concentrated, is picked at the point of full maturity or perfection, that is, when it is about to drop.

Flower remedies are vibrational (homeopathic-like) remedies made from the flowers of plants. Most are made by soaking flowers in water in the sunlight, then preserving the water with brandy to make a mother tincture. The mother tincture is then diluted to create the final remedy.

  • The beauty of these Flower Essence Remedies is they work on vibrational like energy.  Don’t think vibrational energy is “real”, well when you are angry, or scared does your body “feel” calm?  For most people that answer would be “NO”, their hands may shake, or it feels like their inners are shaking or vibrating.  That IS vibrational energy, the ones that love to cause “short-circuit” issues within our bodies are; FEAR, WORRY, ANGER, ANXIETY, GRIEF, these do not do a body good, but using these flower remedies can from a homeopathic perspective assist your body in balancing those negative nellies.
  • These work for pets too, so if you have a pet that suffers from separation anxiety, or doesn’t like being crated, or travel etc.  Give Distress Remedy a try. I used to have a Congo African Gray parrot who would pluck her feathers when we would leave the house, I would put the Distress Remedy in her water dish (these are virtually tasteless by the way), and it really WORKED! I have also used this remedy on our dogs especially when they were puppies and stressed out over being left home alone in their crates.
  • If you are dealing with the grief of losing a loved one, Release it, and Open Heart may be helpful, none of these flower remedies cause any side-effects, so no drowsiness, tiredness, and non-habit forming.  Safe to give to children as well.
    Natures Sunshine offers a line of these flower essence remedies which include:

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Distress Remedy

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)
Benefits:
Supports emotional balance.
May assist the body with occasional emotional distress and emotional balance.
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
Arnica (Arnica mollis), Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum umbellatum), Rock Rose (Helianthemum nummularium), Impatiens (Impatiens glandulifera), Clematis (Clematis vitalba), Cherry Plum (Prunus cerasifera) Red Clover (Trifolium pratense), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination. For children under 12, consult your health care professional

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Keep Cool

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)

Benefits:
May assist the body with feelings of anger and irritability.
May also assist with empathy and communication
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
Calendula (Calendula officinalis), Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus), Impatiens (Impatiens glandulifera), Grape Vine (Vitis vinifera), Willow (Salix vitellina), Holly (Ilex aquifolium), Tiger Lily (Triteleia ixiodides), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. For children under 4, consult your health care professional. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination.

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Find Strength

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)
Benefits:
May assist with feelings of unworthiness.
May help the body with emotional strength and help deal with occasional emotional stress.
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
Mariposa Lily (Calochortus leichtlinii), Pine (Pinus sylvestrus), Scarlet Monkeyflower (Mimulus cardinalis), Centaury (Centaurium erythraea), Fuschia (Fuschia magellanica), Pink Yarrow (Achillea millefolium var. rubra), Goldenrod (Solidago californica), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. For children under 4, consult your health care professional. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination.

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Release It

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)
Benefits:
May assist the body with the grieving process.
May help in letting go of the past.
May assist with emotional distress.
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
Self-Heal (Prunella vulgaris), Love Lies Bleeding (Amaranthus caudaius), Chicory (Cichorium intybus), Bleeding Heart (Dicentra formosa), Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium), Borage (Borago officinalis), Star Thistle (Centauria solstitialis), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. For children under 4, consult your health care professional. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination.

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Open Heart

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)
Benefits:
May assist with the ability to love.
May help release suppressed emotion.
May help increase empathy and compassion.
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
California Wild Rose (Rosa californica), Baby Blue Eyes (Nemophila menziesii), Yerba Santa (Eriodictyon californicum), Star Tulip (Calochortus tolmici), Evening Primrose (Oenothera elata), Pink Monkeyflower (Mimulus lewisii), Golden Ear Drops (Dicentra chrysantha), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. For children under 4, consult your health care professional. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination.

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Be Responsible-Able

(www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com)
Benefits:
May assist the body with promoting self honesty.
May help encourage self-responsibility.
May help with self-defeating behavior.
How It Works:
Flower Essences are liquid extracts developed for modern issues of emotional and physical stress.
Ingredients:
Black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa), Black Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hurta), Milkweed (Asclepias cordifolia), California Poppy (Eschscholzia californica), Agrimony (Agrimonia eupatoria), Joshua Tree (Yucca brevifolia), Mullein (Verbascum thaspus), vegetable glycerin and purified water.
Recommended Use:
Take 10–15 drops under the tongue every 10–15 minutes or as needed until symptoms improve. Then decrease to every 1–2 hours, then to four times daily until symptoms are relieved. For children under 4, consult your health care professional. Avoid any contact with dropper to eliminate product contamination.

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So Many folks struggle to manage their emotional highs & lows, and for some they may believe these flower essence remedies sound too simple.  However, physical and emotional support doesn’t always have to be complicated.  I have personally used these, when my mother passed away the Distress Remedy and Release It, worked beautifully to help me through the grieving process.  To try something that offers ZERO side effects, and ZERO addictive properties.  I highly recommend giving the Flower Remedies a fair try.

If you’d like some assistance with managing your health using a more natural approach, understand I do NOT diagnose disease or prescribe prescription medicines.  What I do is help you support the body nutritionally using plants and herbs so the body can initiate it’s own inner healing support and balance.bleeding_heart-1024x285

Healthfully yours,
Jodi Barnett N.D.
QFA Clinician, Orthomolecular Nutritional Coach
Harvested Health LLC
http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com (product website)
http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc (service link)


WHAT IS ADRENAL BURNOUT?

Adrenal

Feeling irritable? Exhausted? Having trouble sleeping?

Your not alone, today’s fast paced living is stressing folks out, and the stress has been linked to a number of illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and increased risk for cancer according to Jason Block MD, a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar at Harvard.

Adrenal Burnout goes way beyond a bad day. Chronic stress causes the adrenal glands to release wave after wave of hormones that prep the body for a do or die situation.  Eventually these hormone reserves run low or come up empty.

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POTENTIAL SYMPTOMS:
achy joints
anxiety, blood sugar issues
brain fog
early morning fatigue
afternoon exhaustion
low sex drive
insomnia memory loss
slow recovery from illness

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These are just some of the signs you can show that your adrenal glands could be in overdrive.  Get a Saliva/Urine analysis to accurately measure adrenal stress (QFA Analysis).
According to Elson M. Haas MD, mild stress acts as a useful motivation for activity and productivity.  But too much can generate many symptoms and diseases, medicated by changes in immune function, hormonal response, and biochemical reactions, which then impact the cardiovascular, digestive neurological or musculoskeletal systems.

The brain and pituitary gland respond to stress by releasing adrenocorticotropic hormone ACTH.  This stimulates the adrenals to increase production of the hormones epinephrine, norepinephrine and cortisol, as well as other hormones that influence metabolism and water balance.
With extreme stress, the adrenal gland ramps up your fight or flight reaction, which sharpens the senses and raises theheart rate, while slowing digestion and more important functions then take over.  But adrenaline increases blood pressure, adds stress on the heart, and raises blood sugar, increasing metabolic rate. Over time, our ability to cope with stress and to ounce back after a crisis can be compromised.
HOW DOES ONE FEED THE ADRENAL GLANDS?
If you are stressed out, your adrenal pilot light is probably burning 24/7.  Experiencing body aches, digestive distress, fatigue, nervousness, and sleep issues, are all signals you need to slow down and rest and recharge your batteries.  Your pilot light can blow out and your adrenals can slow down to a crawl.  Noticing that you are gaining weight in the belly area that no matter how much you exercise it won’t cooperate is another way you can begin to realize your adrenals are probably on overload.

Eating a healthier whole food diet,and making your mealtime as relaxins as possible. Ditch the cell phones, turn off the television and relax while eating your meals.  Cut out coffee, pop and other stimulants, they may temporarily feel like they are giving you energy, but after their affect they drop you like a hot rock.  Refined carbohydrated will increase blood sugar imbalances which due to adrenal overload are already running high.
Antioxidants, A, C, E, selenium and zinc are usually depleted during stress, put them back with a high quality whole food supplement.  Vitamin C offers cellular protecton and immune support, while allowing the adrenals to produce more cortisone and epinephrine.  Because this antioxidant is rapidly utilized and little gets stored in the body, take 1 to 2 grams in divided doses, every day if you are feeling stressed.  (that’s equivalent to 2000 mg.)
In a recent study, the B vitamin Choline which is a precursor for acetylcholine in the central nervous system was inversely associated with anxiety.  Taking more than the RDA for all the asily depleted B vitamins in two divided doses during the day but not in the evening as they can prevent sleep, according to Dr. Haas.

RESTORE BALANCE WITH HERBS:
Adrenals balance neurotransmitters, relieve anxiety, and ease you into restful sleep.  Adaptogens, medicinal plants that enhance your resistance to stress while increasing concentration and endurance, are pretty effective.

Rhodiola, Eleutrero (Siberian Ginseng), can be very helpful.  Conventional medicine barley recognizes adrenal fatigue, so don’t expect to find numerous double-blind placebo-controlled trials on this class of herbs.
Respected herbalists, however, have long recognized their balancing benefits.  When stress stops, adaptogens help the adrenal glands shut off faster.  Thses herbs also support adrenal function by allowing cells in the body access to more energy and by preventing oxidative damage.  For overall adrenal support Americn ginseng, ashwagandha, cordyceps, holy basil, licorice root, reishi, schisandra offer amazing adrenal support.  If you are generally fatigued yet have sleep issues, reach for herbal formulas that contain American ginseng, chinese wild yam, eleuthero, kudzu, licorice root, reishi, and schisandra.  Chronic stress and anxiety almost always affect the digestion process.  Taking bitters for better digestion, absorption and elimination before meals.
COMPLIMENTARY CHOICES:
Traditional Chinese medicine seeks to rebalance the body by supporting digestion and the liver as well as adrenals, making detoxification useful after intense stress.  Other effective holistic approaches include acuppuncture and relaxation techniques.  Last but not least, begin and end your day with something uplifting and spiritual that brings you outside of yourself and creates peace.

WHAT ARE ADRENAL GLAND?
They are a pair of triangular shaped organs that rest on top of the kidneys.  Each gland normally weights about 5 grams and is made up of two parts: the cortex, or outer sections, which is repsonsible for the production of coretisone, and the medulla, or central section which secretes adrenaline.
The cortex helps to maintain the salt and water balance in the body.  It is also involved in metabolism of carbohydrates and the regulation of lood sugar.  The cortex also is responsible for prodcing a sex hormone similar to that secreted by the testes.
The medulla produces the hormone epinephrine, also called adrenaline, when the body is under stress.  This hormone speeds up the rate of metabolism and produces other physiological changes designed to hep the body cope with danger.

  • ________________________________________________________________________________________
    Reduced adrenal function may be indicated by:
    weakness and muscle wasting
    lethargy
    dizziness
    headaches
    memory issues
    food cravings
    allergies
    blood sugar issues
    If the cortex is seriously underactive, a rare condition called Addison’s disease may develop, Symptoms include:
    fatigue
    loss of appetite
    dizziness
    fainting
    nausea
    moodiness
    decrease in body hair
    inability to cope with stress
    feeling cold
    discoloration and darkening of the skin, (i.e. knees, elbows, scars, skin folds and creases in the palms are more noticeable when exposed to sun
    mouth and freckles may appear darker
    bands of pigment running the length of the nails and darkening of the hair.
  • _________________________________________________________________________________________
    Cushing’s syndrome is a rare disorder caused by an over active adrenal cortex. Persons’ with Cushing’s syndrome take on a characteristic appearance: they generally are heavy in the abdomen and buttocks but have very thin limbs, and rounded moon faces.  Muscular weakness and wasting of muscles are also characteristic.  Round, red marks mimicking acne may appear on the face and eyelids may appear swollen.  Increased growth of body hair is common and woman may grow mustaches and in some cases beards.  Folks with Cushing’s generally are more prone to illness and take longer to heal.  Thinning of the skin from Cushing’s syndrome often leads to stretch marks and bruising.

The functioning of the adrenal glands can be impaired as a result of the extensive use of cortisone therapy for non endocrine disease, like arthritis and asthma.  The long term use of cortisone drugs can cause the adrenals to shrink in size.  Poor nutritional habits, smoking and alcohol and drug abuse can contribute toa drenal failure.

Essential nutrients:
Vitamin B complex: all B vitamins are necessary for adrenal function.
L-Tyrosine: 500 mg. daily on empty stomach, take with water or juice NOT with milk. ( Do not take L-tyrosine if you are taking an MAO inhibitor drug.)
Raw adrenal cortex glandulars:
Liquid Chlorophyll ES helps to keep the blood clean.
Coenzyme Q10 carries oxygen to all glands
Germanium Essential Oil:  enhances immune function (diffuse or apply topically with carrier oil to soles of both feet)
Potassium 99mg. daily needed to balance sodium, potassium is lost with this disorder.

ADRENAL GLAND FUNCTION SELF-TEST
Normally systolic blood pressure which is the 1st number in measurement of blood pressure i.e. 120/80 is approximately 10 points higher when you are standing than when you are lying down.  If the adrenal glands are not functioning properly, however, this may not be the case.

Take and compare the two blood pressure readings, one while lying downa nd one while standing.  1st, lie down and rest for 5 minutes, then take your blood pressure.  Stand up and immediately take your blood pressure again.  If your pressure reading is lower after you stand up, suspect reduced adrenal gland function.  The degree to which the blood pressure drops upon standing is often proportionate to the degree of hypo-adrenalism.

FOOD SUGGESTIONS:
Plenty of fresh frutis and veggies, green leafy ones.  Brewer’s yeast, brown rice, legumes, nuts, olive and safflower oils, seeds, wheat germ and whole grains.
Deep water ocean fish, salmon or tune at least 3 times per week.
Garlic, onions, shiitake mushrooms, pearl barley as these foods contain germanium a powerful stimulant of the immune system.
Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco these are toxic to the adrenal and other glands.
Get regular moderate exercise because exercise stimulates the adrenal glands and helps to relieve stress.
Don’t take these symptoms for granted, whenever our body displays symptoms it is the body’s way of alerting you that there are nutritional deficiencies, so FEED the body what it needs, and allow your body to be the messenger folks.

If you’d like some personalized help with your nutritional plan, I’d be honored to work with you, go to: http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc and schedule your 1 hr. consultation which can be done in person, phone or email.

All herbal and vitamin suggestions mentioned in my article can be purchased at http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com  you can also click on the product links for each mentioned suggestion and it will take you directly to the product if you are interested in purchasing. (Also, sharing is caring so I am always grateful for my peeps to share my article links for others who may be looking for some direction)

Healthfully yours,
Jodi Barnett N.D. (Doctor of Naturopathy)
Harvested Health LLC.

http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc



ALPHA LIPOIC ACID: Versatile Antioxidant

alpha lipoic acidUNIVERSAL VERSATILE ANTIOXIDANT

 

This is one of those antioxidants that is so versatile and beneficial for so many different body responses everyone should incorporate it into their daily supplement routine.
What is Alpha Lipoic Acid?   A potent antioxidant that serves multiple roles in our health.  It is essential for the production of energy, can be beneficial at helping with type 2 diabetes and nerves disease.  It has also been used to treat liver disease such as hepatitis.
It is also known as lipic acid and thioctic acid, it has equal portions of 2 molecules known to our biochemists as R and S isomers.  Most of ALA functions and benefits appear to come from the R form.
It functions as a cofactor in glycosis and the Krebs cycle, cellular processes that break down food molecules to produce energy, (which is why we are designed to get hungry to eat, the body needs energy at a cellular level) and it functions as an antioxidant and helps the body to recycle vitamins C and E and glutathione.
According to Lester Packer, PhD, of the University of Southern California, Alpha Lipoic Acid is the “universal antioxidant” because of its myriad activities.  The body converts some ALA to dihydrolipoic acid and even more potent antioxidant.   It also serves as a precursor to glutathione, which is the most powerful antioxidant made by the body.
Numerous studies have shown that supplementing with alpha lipoic acid can improve insulin function and may also lower blood sugar levels.  Considerable research has shown that it improves nerve pain and numbness related to diabetes.  Recent researchers have studied the benefits of alpha lipoic acid for other nerve disorders such as sciatic pain.
Other Helpful Benefits:
Liver: alpha lipoic acid restores the liver’s glutathione levels and promotes recovery.
Burning mouth syndrome:  Some 1.3 million Americans suffer from burning mouth syndrome.   ALA supplements can reduce symptoms of this painful condition,  In one study, 42 women were followed and 18 men with the burning mouth syndrome.  They were given either 200 mg of ALA or placebos 3 times daily for 2 months.  Nearly all of the patients on ALA showed improvement compared to placebo and 75% benefited substantially with some experiencing complete recovery.
Weight loss:  ALA has potential benefits in appetite control & weight loss.
Mental sharpness: a combination of alpha lipoic acid and acetyl L carnitine can lead to greater physical energy for some and mental sharpness according to studies.  Both nutrients are involved in how cells break down food to make up energy.

 

  • Overall Benefits of Alpha Lipoic Acid:
    Encourages energy production.
    Supports blood sugar levels already within the normal range.
    Protects the liver.
    Supports the cardiovascular system.
    Supports nerve cell health
    Supports the nervous and glandular systems.
    Enhances the efforts of other antioxidants.
    How It Works:
    Most antioxidants are either water- or fat-soluble. Alpha lipoic acid is both, making its protective powers available to all cells in the body. Subsequently, ALA is often called the universal antioxidant, and it can protect the integrity of the cell membrane as well as offset cell stress. ALA protects the cell membrane and promotes mitochondrial activity to keep your body and its tissues young. It also helps support the body’s natural removal of toxins. ALA directs calories away from fat production and toward energy production. Each capsule provides 250 mg alpha lipoic acid.
    Ingredients:
    Alpha lipoic acid and turmeric root.
    Recommended Use:
    Take 1 capsule with a meal twice daily.

If you’d like a more personal approach and help with your health, here’s what I do, I help strengthen the nutritional elements within your body, so your body has what it needs to fight illness and heal itself.

You can go to: http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc for a list of my services.

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

QFA Clinician, Orthomolecular Nutritionist

Harvested Health LLC

http://www.facebook.com/harvestedhealth

http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com (high quality herbs/supplements and Essential Oils)


What Happens To The Food You Eat?

intestinesThe easiest analogy I can put forth would be comparing one’s body to that of a chemical engine, it accepts what one eats as fuel.  Sometimes it decides some of the fuel is unacceptable by discarding it by throwing it back up, or for some shooting it through quickly and sending it out the south pole region.  Sometimes, it will decide to store it in the fat cells to cushion the body against leaner times; and some it will gratefully use to fire its countless tiny cell furnaces after it applies some complex biochemical treatment.

If the energy output in the food one recently fed their engine is nutritionally deficient, the body will insist you send more through hunger triggers and one has the urge to raid the kitchen again. Which is why you can devour an entire bag of potato chips and still feel hungry, nutritionally they were empty!

If any of you reading have ever watched one of those survival shows, like “Naked and Afraid”, the people on the show sometimes  will go for the full 21 days with nothing more than water, and they always tell at the end of the show how much weight each one lost.  During a survival mode such as that; the body will use up the fat deposits first to feed the engine, then it will turn to breaking down muscle tissue, (eating itself).  When folks start getting sick and notice their body is breaking down is when the their engine has been being fed the wrong kind of fuel too many times, leaving the body to have to compensate with that which the body has stored.

Folks, our digestive system is basically a chemical refinery that is able to manufacture its own fuels and is capable of delivering energy from those raw materials: the proteins, fats, carbohydrates (that are broken down into starches and sugars), vitamins and minerals.  This whole process of digestion takes place the minute we send food into our mouth and down the esophagus into the stomach.

When we chew our food and it’s mixed with our saliva digestion begins.  Our digestive system is like that of a conveyor belt, there are various stations where other chemicals are contributed to convert the food/fuel so our engines can use it by breaking down, diluting and dissolving as well as adding some chemicals and even removing others.

When the food mixes with our saliva which is the first set of digestive enzymes the food comes into contact with, these enzymes are special protein molecules that act as “catalysts” the definition of catalysts: a substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change. So the job of these catalysts /Enzymes is to assist the body/engine in metabolizing, which is the what the body does to convert this fuel into energy.  The enzymes our body produces are called the spark plugs of life, we cannot process a single morsel of any food without them. Yet, when we are eating foods that are loaded with chemical preservatives or “enzyme inhibitors”, the very structure  of our enzymes that the body produces can be altered, which is why we see so many folks struggling with digestive issues.

The Stomach secretions, the enzymes from the pancreas, the liver and the glands lining the small intestines all act on the passing food.  As the food has been touched by the actions of these enzymes and ferments then the other catalytic agents of reduction in the mouth and stomach is now spread out, as it were, upon a huge carpet.  This carpet area is the lining of our small intestines, which is about 26 feet long and is covered with millions of villi, which are like little fingers that are constantly moving back and forth, they are sticking out from the lining of the small intestine.

So when we eat something that has an irritating effect, the bowel is going to either try to get rid of it quickly which we experience as diarrhea, or it puts a spastic clamp on the intestines to keep the irritating substances from moving which we experience as constipation.

This rich lining of delicate sensitive cells is our body’s first defense level, it fights the good fight against the absorption of unnatural and detrimental food elements.  Yet repeated absorption of these elements produces over time inflammation and even destruction of our delicate lining.  That is when the blood in these villi become so overcharged with toxic elements that elements of it is allowed to enter into the blood stream.

So, as these digested food particles are spread over our intestinal carpet to be absorbed, two important issues present themselves:  what is the quality of the food and the quantity?

If we overeat, that makes it difficult to digest, and too much is saved/absorbed.  The villi have no regulating ability to indicate how much to absorb.  This contributes to folks being overweight or they feel sick.

Typically when we sit down for a meal, we feast on a variety of foods.  Understanding that the way our body has to break down different elements in our foods, realizing that when we throw to many different foods in the same meal, can result in incomplete digestion.  How does that FEEL:

*bloating

*feeling full for hours

*sleepy after eating

When clients come to me with digestive issues, even food sensitivities, what ends up happening is we have to simplify their diet to reduce the work load on their digestive system.

Cells called small lymphocytes, carry food needed for growth and reproduction of our body’s cells.  This food is protein in nature, but before it can be used by the body’s cells, an iodine value must be added to it by the thyroid gland. The body is so incredibly amazing, the villi that line the small intestine have two sets of vessels, they have blood vessels and lymph vessels.  These lymph vessels are what transport lymphocytes and other white blood cells.  So during digestion it requires a large amount of lymphocytes, these enter the lymph vessels, and so the body will have enough available, God placed the largest organ for manufacture of these lymphocytes close to the small intestine.  That would be the spleen, whose function is to send armies of lymphocytes to the villi after we eat.

We hear about the importance of “amino acids”, and how they are building blocks in our body.  Well, as the lymphocytes are being pushed through these lymph channels of our villi, they absorb amino acids, which are the digested form of proteins.  They then get circulated toward a large duct, that would be the thoracic duct, which moves them to the subclavian vein into which the thoracic duct empties, just above the point where the secretion that comes from the thyroid gland is released into the same vein.  Now, TELL me this isn’t SUPER COOL……this all takes place and we don’t see it, we don’t feel it, but we can’t live without these functions!

It’s at this point that the lymphocytes are exposed to the iodine from the thyroid which “iodizes” their amino acids, which is what we need for cell growth and reproduction.  These lymphocytes then circulate in the blood vessels or lymph vessels, or sometimes cut right through the tissues to a needed location.  So after this cycle occurs these lymphocytes return to the spleen, where they either get disintegrated or are sent on again to the villi to cycle again.

This concept of digestion was introduced and published in the December, 1928, Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine.

I impress on my clients who are parents, WHAT you feed your children is important! During adolescent years lymphocytes are needed in larger than normal amounts, the stages of growth and repair that takes place during childhood and until the end of adolescence is what sets the very foundation of health as our kiddo’s enter adulthood. During this period God has supplied an extra lymphocyte-manufacturing center which would be the thymus gland, which begins to shrink after adolescence.  The thymus is by the thyroid so that iodine is readily available.  So realize that the foundation of our children’s health future should be supplied with the very best building material we can supply.  Fast food, like chicken nuggets, and French fries and soda, and boat loads of refined sugary foods; isn’t going to make that happen.

CARBOHYDRATES:

When we eat carbs and complex sugars our digestive system reduces those to simple glucose, which the blood vessels of the villi absorb and that glucose gets burned directly in our muscles.  The body receives its muscular energy and heat from this.  Fats are also combustible, but they usually burn better with the carbohydrate flame.  (I’ll touch more on this on a later post)

EMOTIONS:

Gut and psychology go together.  How one “feels” is really dependent on how your food processor (digestion system) is processing.   If we pay attention and “watch” people, take a holiday meal, some families laugh at the fact that when their whole family gets together, many times someone causes an uproar.  If you take notice most of that tends to happen AFTER the meal has been eaten.   That’s when emotions run high.  Watch the kiddo’s at a holiday function, after the sweets are served up, the kids get hyper, weepy, or can toss some fits.  What we eat makes us who we are, and our emotions are predicated on what takes place in the gut.  I’ll dig deeper on that in a different post.

 

References:

“Journal of Laboratory & Clinical”, Dec. 1928, Dr. Warren T. Vaughan M.D.

Dr. J.H. Salisbury: “The Relation of Alimentation & Disease.”

Dr. William Beaumont (Father of Gastric Physiology) “Life & Letter of Dr. William Beaumont”.

Dr. Bieler M.D. “The Magnificent Human Body”

 

The next post will move onto our body’s second line of defense that is employed to keep us healthy!

Stay tuned….

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

Harvested Health LLC

http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc