I receive a lot of questions from my community about cleanses.

Cleanses have been around since ancient times, and were originally a springtime phenomena. As winter ended, people would want to shed the winter layer of fat that they had accumulated in order to keep warm! In some religions, cleanses and fasting have long been used in support of a path to spiritual rebirth.

Today, most of the popular forms of cleansing limit diet intake in some way for a short period of time. Many have cleanse-specific “boosters” that may be part of the diet protocol, such as herbal laxatives, antioxidants, digestive enzymes, probiotics and other anti-inflammatory supplements. Relaxation techniques may be recommended as well, such as massage, sauna, soaking baths and aromatherapy.

While the body naturally detoxes itself fairly efficiently most of the time, people today are exposed to many more toxins in their everyday life. Environmental toxins from our drinking water, our foods (antibiotics in our meat!), chemicals around the home, even within the skincare products that we slather on… our bodies can easily become stressed and unhealthy from this toxic overload.

The goal of a cleanse is typically one or more of the following:

  • Detox body of toxins
  • Heal inflammation in GI tract, liver, kidneys and colon (“healthier gut”)
  • Reduce food cravings
  • Weight loss
  • Diet reset: help kick-off a better eating plan
There are literally hundreds of – if not thousands – cleanse programs.

Fasting Cleanses

Fasting cleanses dramatically limit your caloric intake or may in fact be water only. I am not a big supporter of fasting cleanses as this type of cleanse stresses the body, which basically thinks it is starving. No inflammation healing occurs, and there is the possibility for many negative health consequences with nutrient deficiencies (from lack of protein and healthy fats), blood sugar spikes and stalled metabolism. Any weight that is lost will likely be water or lean muscle mass, not fat.

Some people are proponents of intermittent fasting, where you eat your entire day’s food within an 8-hour period and then eat nothing for the next 16 hours. Supporters of intermittent fasting say that it helps them lose weight and feel energized.

Juicing Cleanses

Juicing is a strict dietary regimen of only fruit and vegetable juices. Juicing that is heavy on fruits can be unhealthy as your blood sugar levels can go crazy due to the high fructose in the fruit. Better to focus the majority of your juicing cleanse on organic, nutrient-rich vegetables like green veggies, spinach, kale, cucumber and the like, and maybe throw a small handful of berries in for taste. Dark berries such as blueberries help your liver get rid of certain toxins. Rather than juicing a few times a year as a cleanse strategy, I personally feel that juicing is healthier as part of an ongoing whole food diet.

Liver Cleanses

There are a variety of packaged products as well as “recipes” for drinks to flush toxins through bile ducts and our liver; a mixture of olive oil and lemon juice being just one. I am more of a proponent of regularly eating healthy, non-inflammatory foods that help detoxify the liver naturally. Cruciferous vegetables such as bok choy, broccoli and cauliflower increase your kidney’s ability to transport toxins into the urine, which helps liver cells recover from detoxification efforts. Foods high in sulfur such as kale and Brussels sprouts, and foods high in glutathione such as spinach and carrots, also help with liver detoxification.

Herbs that are helpful for liver detoxification are milk thistle and dandelion root. Dandelion root tea will get your bile flowing! Vitamin E, zinc and selenium and B Complex (which helps with alcohol metabolism) are all helpful in ridding our bodies of toxins. I suggest that a little self-restraint on alcohol, sugar and other liver-impacting toxins is also a great strategy!

Colon Cleanses

Some people do colon cleanses which are herbal remedies, laxatives or enemas focused on cleaning out the colon. There isn’t a lot of research data supporting that this is necessary for a healthy bowel.

Some people opt for a colonic irrigation, also known as colon hydrotherapy. This is when tubing is placed in the rectum and several gallons of water are introduced. Often, the water is combined with enzymes, probiotics or herbs.

Instead of a colon cleanse, I recommend drinking adequate pure water (1/2 your weight in pounds, in ounces daily), increasing your intake of fiber and strengthening your “good” bacteria flora using a good probiotic or through fermented foods like kimchi (Korean spicy pickled cabbage) to help protect your colon.

Detox Cleanses (with specific foods included or specifically eliminated)

Most detox cleanses focus on a diet of specific foods – ideally including healthy proteins and fats – along with nutrients to support the detoxification process and toxin elimination. The best detox cleanses provide a list of foods to avoid (typically allergens like dairy and gluten; caffeine, alcohol, etc.) along with a preferred list of foods that are suggested and geared towards protecting the body’s detox organs. Proportions, caloric intake and supplementation (nutrients, enzymes and probiotics) may also be advised. I favor this type of program as it is anti-inflammatory, supportive of the body’s natural detoxification processes, helps balance hormones and also provides insights as to food sensitivities and allergies!

Allergy Elimination Cleanse

In my practice I recommend my allergy elimination cleanse, as I have found that for most people, reducing exposure to allergens and eliminating toxins in their environment support their body to cleanse and heal itself naturally.

If you look at the cleanse goals referenced above, most professionals suggest that rather than infrequent cleanses, the best approach is long-term lifestyle modification.

Improving upon your body’s natural detoxification, gaining a healthier gut and reducing inflammation…even losing weight, can best be achieved by reducing the toxic load in your environment and your body. This includes ensuring the healthiest nutritional foods, cleaner water and air; cleaning up toxins and allergens in your living environment; using less-toxic personal hygiene products, as well as reducing stress. Along with allergen elimination, I am a big advocate of utilizing your largest detox organ in your body: your skin.

Using Your Skin to Detox: The Perfect Cleanse Companion

The skin is the largest organ of the body and is a major avenue for detoxification! Daily dry skin brushing with a loofa in the direction of your lymphatic system will increase circulation and open up the pores for detoxification.

Sweating is a wonderful detox mechanism. A soaking bath can be a wonderful detoxifier, and can reduce mental and physical stress…. and it feels heavenly!

When having your daily shower or bath, probiotic soap can also be a great way to ensure that only healthy flora on your skin get absorbed. Like oral probiotics or fermented foods (like kimchi), probiotic soap is anti-microbial and helps promote healthier flora on your skin.

Make conscious decisions to keep your body inflammatory-free! This involves a commitment to a healthier lifestyle versus following the latest cleanse fads.

Listen below to my Nature’s Secrets Radio Show segment on
“5 Steps to Better Sleep”:

5StepsToBetterSleep.mp3     

 

A third of US adults routinely sleep fewer than 7 hours a night, and for many that isn’t by choice. Overly committed lifestyles, stress and unhealthy habits plague our ability to get a good night’s sleep. What is going on inside our bodies; and what can you do to improve your sleep?

Two bodily processes impact your sleep. First, your body has its own sleep/wake homeostasis, or state of balance; it naturally creates restorative time for itself…as long as you let it.

The other critical process is our circadian biological clock. This internal clock regulates a 24-hour cycle within our bodies consisting of patterns of brain activity, cell regeneration, hormone production, and many other biological activities.

This circadian rhythm is controlled by the hypothalamus in our brain, and our body clock’s timing is set by the light-dark cycles around us throughout our day.

So light exposure is key to sleep.

It is a fascinating process. Any type of light whether it is natural or artificial hitting your optic nerve (the nerve in the back of our eyeballs), transmits a message of “awake” to the SCN, which stands for suprachiasmatic nucleas –a group of cells in the hypothalamus in our brain.

The light trigger produces an elevation in our body temperature, an elevation in the hormone cortisol (and a reduction in sleep hormones), and many other physical changes that get us up and going in the morning.

Alternatively, when our eyes are not being stimulated by light, it tells the SCN in the hypothalamus that it is nighttime, and time for restorative rest.

The SCN instructs the pineal glands to produce melatonin and serotonin (hormones which help us relax and sleep), our body temperature drops and our bodies get ready to sleep.

Why is this important?

Think about it. Before electricity was available, people went to bed when the sun went down, and got up at sunrise. They likely got a good night’s sleep with a lot of restorative rest.

With electronics and all of the distractions we have today, from viewing late night programming to answering emails, we’ve messed up our natural light-dark rhythms.

By maintaining a healthy sleep hygiene you will improve your immune system’s defense mechanisms to fight infections…improve your mental clarity and memory skills, improve your energy level, and even improve your ability to lose weight!

Lose weight while you are sleeping, that is too good to be true! Yes, studies show that sleep can affect many hormones in our body especially ones relating to appetite- ghrelin and leptin.

Ghrelin is produced in the gastrointestinal tract, stimulates our appetite, while leptin is produced in our fat cells, which sends a signal to the brain when you are full.

My mantra for this is: Go away ghrelin, I love leptin!

We want more leptin to curb our appetite, and don’t want more ghrelin since it increases our appetite!

Studies are showing that excretion of these hormones can be influenced by our sleep patterns.

When you don’t get deep uninterrupted sleep, the levels of leptin decreases, which mean you don’t feel satisfied after a big meal. At the same time, ghrelin levels increase in the gut, which makes you crave more food especially carbohydrates and you end up fatter!

Here are a few strategies to improve and maintain a healthy biorhythm:

  1. Wake up and go to sleep at the same time daily, even on weekends to get at least 8 hours of sleep, if you can get 9 even better! Don’t take naps… that will just confuse your body’s clock even more.
  2. Turn off all of your lights! Ideally, dim the lights at sun down, or at least 1 hour prior to bedtime. If possible, turn-off your electronics, computers, the TV, and other lights and use a book light for reading or journaling.
  3. Ensure that your bedroom is very dark or wear an eye mask to sleep. Even a small amount of light, like that from an electric clock, can impact the pineal gland’s production of melatonin. Plus staring at that clock will cause your cortisol to increase, just the opposite of what you want.
  4. First thing in the morning, let some sunshine hit your eyes! And linger for 15 minutes or so if you can. Do a yoga stretch or meditate to start your day.
  5. If you don’t have sunshine or natural light due to the winter season and extreme weather… invest in a light box with full-spectrum fluorescent bulbs during the morning hours. I usually recommend using light therapy from Halloween through Easter for most people who have difficulty waking up during the winter.

Poor sleep habits can contribute to sleep issues. Ideally, you should get 8-9 hours of sleep every night.

If you are not able to manage that, try a few of these tips:

  • Go to bed earlier, by 10 pm if possible.
  • Create a bedtime relaxation ritual: Even 10 minutes of ritual (an hour is better!) before bed can help you relax your body. Try a hot bath with lavender; when you get out and start to cool down your body naturally will start to get sleepy. Lavender is a wonderful relaxation aromatherapy.
  • Play some quiet music, practice some deep breathing or mindfulness techniques, do some reading or journaling under low light.
  • Environment: Ensure your bed and pillow is right for your type of sleeping (back, side, and face-down). A cooler temp (no greater than 68 degrees) will help you sleep.
  • Physical activity: Ensure at least 30 minutes of daily exercise, but not within a few hours of bedtime. Best time is in the morning.
  • Eliminate nicotine, caffeine and alcohol. All increase cortisol and will result in stimulating the nervous system and reduce restful sleep. Check prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs for caffeine.
  • Don’t drink water after 8:00 (or you may have to get up to urinate).
  • Don’t go to sleep hungry or stuffed full. Digestive enzymes or a probiotic can help ease heart-burn and other digestive discomfort that might keep you awake.
  • Eat foods containing the amino acid tryptophan if you need a late snack, such as turkey, walnuts, almonds, eggs or pumpkin seeds.

Pumpkin seeds have the highest dose of tryptophan per serving. Our bodies convert tryptophan into 5-HTP, and then to serotonin and melatonin. This relaxes the body and promotes sleep.

In my practice I have found that allergies are often the culprit in poor sleep. Cleaning up your diet by eating healthier, whole foods will help. Additionally, removing common food sensitivities can help.

The culprits are: dairy, gluten, sugars, fungi, alcohol, eggs and peanuts.

Lack of energy, an inability to wake-up, brain fog, fatigue, restless sleep and even insomnia can be symptoms of a food or environmental allergy.

Cleaning up potential allergens in your environment, especially in the kitchen, can also help with sleep. Sadly, Fido and Fluffy may need to be banished from the bed. In my book, The 7-Day Allergy Makeover, I talk about all the things that people can do to ease allergy symptoms.

Interestingly, new research is showing people are actually developing allergies due to a lack of sleep; sleep deprivation may weaken your immune system, making you more prone to developing an allergy, diabetes or other diseases and infections.

There are also some natural remedies in the form of supplementation that can help with sleep. Please don’t take sleeping pills. Research has shown they are not that effective, can reduce the overall quality of your sleep and may have toxic side effects such as increasing the risk of cancer.

Here are a few sleep supplements that I often discuss with my patients:

  • Phosphatidylserine: this is a naturally occurring lipid found in our cell membranes which helps reduce cortisol levels in the body, helping the body to rest.
  • Melatonin: this is a naturally occurring hormone involved in the body’s sleep-wake cycle, and is a common sleep aide for many people suffering from insomnia.
  • GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid): this is a neurotransmitter which helps the brain and the body to relax.
  • Valerian: this is an herb which stimulates the brain to release GABA. It is often found in herbal sleeping formulas.
  • Magnesium: this is a good supplement important to controlling blood sugar and many people are deficient in this in their diet; it also aids in sleep.

So, why is a good night’s sleep so important…beyond keeping us from waking up grumpy?

The body needs to rest deeply with our interruption to restore itself and many cleansing, detoxing, rejuvenating and regenerating processes occur while we sleep… mostly during the deepest level of sleep, which occurs between 10pm and 2 am.

Nearly every hormone in our body is released in response to our body’s circadian clock! Therefore if you are totally off rhythm, then you are bound to see that your hormones will be thrown off quickly as well!

Studies have shown that sleep-deprivation can even impact the hormone insulin, which our bodies use to regulate blood sugar. One study found that sleep-deprived men’s insulin echoed the effects of insulin resistance, which is a precursor to diabetes. Cortisol levels and thyroid-stimulating hormones also have shown changes during sleep deprivation.

So sleep is clearly vital to your health, and your health is vital to your sleep! Follow these tips, improve your nighttime sleep habits, and keep your circadian clock humming…and you are sure to get a better night’s sleep tonight!

If your Valentine’s Day “Sexpectations” fall flat this year, you don’t have to wait until next year’s holiday to rev up your love connection.

The ability to truly enjoy sexual intimacy is so important in maintaining a healthy relationship. It builds an intimate bond between partners; a relationship that can be significantly impacted by emerging sexual issues – often associated with aging – such as low libido and erectile dysfunction.

There are many pharmaceuticals available on the market focused on the improvement of both psychological and physical sexual dissatisfaction (such as Viagra and anti-depressants), but often they can have dangerous side effects. I am a proponent of more natural solutions to regain sexual health in a relationship, and have found a variety of natural remedies available that can help address low libido issues, erectile dysfunction and general sexual satisfaction.

I personally only discuss approaches and remedies that I’ve found to work well for my patients. In particular, DHEA, deer antler and Sea Buckthorn oil have performed well clinically in my office. Here are a few natural solutions that have shown great promise in delivering more vibrant sexual health.

DHEA

As we age the levels of many of our hormones reduce, DHEA being one of those. DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is produced by the adrenals and converts naturally into the body’s sex hormones. Studies show that the reduction in DHEA is linked to a variety of age-related issues; including depression, sexual dysfunction, cardiovascular disease and cognitive decline.

Supplementing with DHEA using low dosages in capsules, or via vaginal tablets, may enhance libido and improve one’s sense of wellbeing. It has also been shown to support improvements with erectile function by increasing nitric oxide levels (similar to how Viagra works, by enhancing the body’s natural reaction to the rise in nitric oxide that occurs during sexual stimulation).

DEER ANTLER VELVET

In traditional Chinese medicine, deer antler has long been used to treat bone and muscle problems, female disorders and impotence.

Deer antler velvet is the soft fuzz covering the growing cartilage and bone that develops into deer antlers. The antler velvet is humanely harvested from the deer at farms, a process that is regulated in New Zealand where much of deer antler is exported; the deer shed and grow new antlers annually.

Components of the antler and velvet are processed for differing purposes, and to make them bioavailable to the body. The product is sold in capsules or in a spray, and is thought to increase levels of sex hormones, increase libido and address erectile dysfunction.

There has been some controversy over recent years regarding body builders and professional athletes using deer antler velvet to increase their muscle health and injury recovery time, as it includes insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1). As IGF-1 regulates growth hormones, deer antler velvet has been viewed – and is heavily marketed – as a performance-enhancing drug in those communities.

Sea Buckthorn Oil

Sea Buckthorn oil has been studied and shown to treat dry and irritated mucous membranes of the urogenital tissues of women. As hormones wane delicate tissues around and inside the vaginal canal can thin out and atrophy. Low levels of mucous secretions in the vagina can cause pain and inflammation during and after intercourse and trigger bladder and vaginal infections. Improving the moisture and integrity of the sexual organs with Sea Buckthorn oil can be just the answer for peri-menopausal and menopausal women!

MACA

Maca is a popular super food used by men and by women who want more sexual fire in their lives. A Peruvian herb, made from the Maca root, it addresses adrenal fatigue and can improve mood, PMS and menopausal symptoms, and libido in both men and women. There are a variety of studies and anecdotal evidence, as well as a huge loyal support base, substantiating maca claims relating to sexual health.

DAMIANA

Damiana is typically found in formulary blends containing other herbs, vitamins and minerals; it has long been viewed as an aphrodisiac.

Damiana is available as capsules or leaves/tea bags and is thought to provide a relaxed state of mind. In formulations coupled with other ingredients such as ginseng, ginkgo, L-arginine and DHEA, it may provide adrenal support, increased blood flow and optimized testosterone and estrogen metabolism. Korea Red Ginseng, in particular as shown positive results in improving erectile function.

Other Healthy Remedies

Need I say that healthy foods in the kitchen help in the bedroom?

Eating whole, nutrient-dense foods, losing belly fat, keeping the blood flowing (through exercise and movement), optimal sleep hygiene and reducing stress can all improve your ability to better connect and enjoy your sexuality.

Talk with your doctor about what makes the most sense for you; your doctor may want to monitor changes in your DHEA and other hormone levels, for example. Purchase your supplements and herbs from reputable stores.

Other general recommendations would be a good multi-vitamin, fish oil, zinc (shown to be important in testosterone production and playing a role in libido for both men and women), Vitamin D and L-Carnitine.

Finally, living a happy, fun and joyful life increases your body’s own production of DHEA! Focusing on connecting with your love partner by relaxing, exercising and enjoying activities that are pleasurable will help rev up your love connection and bring back the sexy between the sheets!

The importance of hand washing has been drilled into us for many years as one of the best ways to prevent the spread of germs –living microorganisms, some of which can cause annoying illnesses such as colds right through to potentially serious diseases like pneumonia and food poisoning.

Well, it’s certainly true that hand washing is a very effective way to stop the spread of pesky germs! Antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers are commonly used nowadays in the home or workplace, in restaurant kitchens, in schools and of course in hospitals where germs frequently hang out, so they are generally seen as effective products to banish germs.

But before you reach for the sanitizer again, you might be interested to know that antibacterial soaps and sanitizers aren’t the only tools for the job and in fact that there are some very good reasons to avoid them altogether!

3 Reasons Why You Should Avoid Antibacterial Soaps and Hand Sanitizers:

1. They’re packed full of chemicals
Many antibacterial hand washing products contain an antibacterial chemical agent called Triclosan. There have been some concerns raised about the effects of Triclosan on general health as it’s been shown to disrupt immune system function and hormone regulation. In addition, some forms of bacteria may in fact be developing antibiotic-resistance and immunity through being exposed to antibacterial agents like Triclosan. This affects the general public through the onset of “superbugs”!

Another chemical compound found in antibacterial soaps and sanitizers are Parabens; preservatives which make these products last longer. Parabens are essentially toxins which researchers have found may be linked to health problems such as skin irritation or worse – the damage of the reproductive or immune system and even cancer!

Aside from checking the label on your antibacterial products, a good way to determine whether your hand sanitizer is loaded with chemicals is to smell it. If it’s artificially fragranced, it’s very likely to contain a number of unknown toxic chemicals because companies aren’t required to disclose the ingredients of fragrances.

2. Frequent use can damage your skin
As well as washing away germs, antibacterial soaps and sanitizers can actually wipe out your skin’s natural bioflora, leading to your hands looking old and wrinkly before their time! In some cases, contact dermatitis can be caused by regular exposure to the chemicals found in these products.

3. Being “too clean” could cause allergies and asthma in young children
Some experts believe that if young children aren’t exposed to germs, they may be more likely to suffer from asthma or allergies later on in life, according to The Hygiene Hypothesis. This theory is based on the fact that being overly hygienic could prevent children from being exposed to the good bacteria we need to build up our immune system.

Natural Alternatives to Manufactured Antibacterial Soaps and Hand Sanitizers:

When you consider the many possible side effects of antibacterial soaps, there’s much to be said for plain old fashioned traditional soap and hand washing which is just as effective at promoting good hygiene.

Even better, there are some great natural alternatives to antibacterial hand sanitizers and soaps which will not only help you to keep your skin (and the rest of your body) healthy, they are also effective at combatting germs too.

One option to consider is making your own natural antibacterial hand soap product. Herbs have been used for thousands of years as scents and disinfectants to name just a couple of uses. Known antibacterial herbs include Lavender, Peppermint and Rosemary – they can be added to a soap base really easily.

Many essential oils also have natural antibacterial properties which are resistant to many forms of bacteria. In particular Lemongrass, Peppermint, Eucalyptus and Orange Oils are known to be effective. So is making your own antibacterial hand sanitizer or soap difficult? You’ll be pleased to know that it’s very easy to do! You can use Aloe Vera Gel as a base and there are some fantastic homemade recipes available online.

You can also buy some premade natural cleansing bars which are chemical free and hypoallergenic, such as the Probiotic Cleansing Bar available right here on this site. This particular cleansing product has been made with carefully blended, hand-harvested raw botanical ingredients designed to complement and help your skin’s own bioflora.

Sit Less       

How many hours are you glued to a chair or stuck in front of a computer each day? The average American sits upward of 12-hours a day with little movement. Sitting too much causes disc herniations and overstretches ligaments that provide support. Make a goal to stand and move every 45-50 minutes to undue what sitting is doing to your lower back. Walking for 10-minutes, climbing a few flights of stairs or perform some gentle backward extension at your desk. Use your smart phone to set a timer as a reminder.

Strengthen and Stabilize

Flexible joints and muscles can help relieve pain, but without strength and stability, healthy alignment will be a challenge. Especially helpful for lower back pain are movements that build stability in the abdominal core, which plays a vital role in holding the lower back in place. Core stability exercises will improve your posture, heal your back and tighten your tummy!

Sleep and Heal

Exercise will no doubt be a part of your recovery from back pain. As you exercise you will rebuild new muscle and tissue. Sleep is a vital part of the recovery process and even more important as you heal. Make sure to get 7-9 hours of sleep each night to reduce stress hormone production, and enable growth hormone to repair connective tissue.

Stress Less      

Meditation can help you modulate pain. Meditate or practice deep breathing techniques to lower stress hormones, which can help decrease pain and muscle tension. A 10-minute mid-day meditation is an effective intervention for those who suffer with chronic pain. Focus on one word or image that brings you joy or comfort.

Natural NSAIDs         

Maintain an anti-inflammatory diet, which is optimal for healing.  Incorporate ginger and turmeric, which have been proven to decrease pain. Make a fresh pot of Paleo bone broth, which will provide the essential nutrients vital for healing connective tissue such as ligaments, disk and cartilage. Prepare a nightly cup of ginger tea with a pinch of turmeric. This will aid in healing your gut as well as your joints!

For more on back health, click here for Dr. Joe’s great videos!

Fear of “Oldtimer’s”?

Last week when I was hanging out with Sarah Chun, my cool 83 years young mom, she confided in me that the #1 fear she has right now is that she may be losing her mind- she used the word Alzheimer’s!

Wait, she actually she pronounced it “Oldtimer’s” with a Korean accent, but I knew exactly what she was talking about!

Now my mother is in good health- she eats well, laughs daily watching her Korean drama shows and gets her exercise by dancing around to K-Pop. But she does have her forgetful moments of not remembering little things here and there which frustrates her terribly. Anyone who has a parent over 75 years old understands these little mishaps.

I reassured and calmed her down, told her that yes, she does have some memory issues-  but definitely not Alzheimer’s disease (AD), what is now called Type 3 Diabetes!

Having me as a daughter has some awesome perks- for years I have been advising her what she can do to stay young and rev up her brainpower but this time, she was ready to listen and follow through.

Her fears of losing her mind are the same as all of our fears, so I decided to post an article on the recommendations I gave to my mother that can help you or your family members as well.

I created a personalized step-by-step lifestyle program for her:

  • Increased her protein intake and replaced her white rice (Korean staple) for sweet potatoes, brown rice and quinoa,
  • Scheduled her night ritual so she can sleep longer and deeper hours,
  • Added some of the same brain boosting supplements I take daily to improve her memory and cognitive function
  • Eliminated all inflammatory causing foods such as sugar, dairy, gluten and yeast
  • Recommended a neck massage weekly to increase blood flow to her brain and open up her lymphatic system.

I expressed to her that we will get her mind and brain sparking in no time and that she will be with us fully functioning for a very long time. I reminded her that her own mother lived 104 years!

Then a few days ago, CNN came out with this very interesting article about reversing dementia, AD and improving the brain. What perfect timing!

The article was based on Dr. Dale Bredesen’s recent study (from my alma mater), at UCLA’s Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research and it went over much of the same information I gave to my mother.

I added my own recommendations to Dr. Dale’s study and created the:

 9 Key Strategies to Prevent Dementia and early Alzheimer’s Disease:

  1. Reduce simple carbohydrates, starchy vegetables and gluten grains to reduce “leaky brain” and brain inflammation
  1. Take a daily dose of Vitamin D to modulate and improve immunity
  1. Increase your circulation and sweating mechanism by exercising vigorously, dry brushing, sitting in an infrared sauna, and hot & cold baths or showers. This will reduce toxins from deposited into the brain and cleansing them out of the body.
  1. Add polyphenols to your supplement regimen. These super antioxidants will stop oxidation and damage to DNA and nerve tissue that can lead to premature aging and brain deterioration. My favorites polyphenols include EGCg (decaffeinated), Resveratrol, and power greens!
  1. Reverse dementia and rejuvenate the brain by taking these phospholipids and essential fatty acid supplements for life: GPC (glycerophosphocholine), Phosphatidyl Serine and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Also eat more healthy fats at every meal (olive, avocado, ghee, walnut, coconut)!
  1. Wait to go to sleep at least 3 hours after dinner and fast (no food, water is fine) for 12 hours between dinner and your next meal- this may help breakdown the amyloid beta proteins that build up in the brain found in Alzheimer patients. D
  1. Eat more probiotics, prebiotics (fibrous veggies), and fermented foods like kimchi (my fav!), pickles and organic miso to improving gut health, which reduces the risk of dementia.
  1. Get 7 to 8 hours of deep uninterrupted sleep to reduce stress and inflammation and to rejuvenate the body and spirit.
  1. Reduce toxic metal exposure to mercury and aluminum, both neurotoxins that can contribute to brain deterioration. Minimize eating mercury-laden fish such as tuna and swordfish, and stop using aluminum-based products.

What I love about Dr. Dale is that his study was all about fighting dementia and Alzheimer’s by making healthy everyday lifestyle choices rather than testing some type of new drug or vaccine. He even knew about “leaky gut” and mercury toxicity- love this guy!

We all have the power to change our brain by changing our lifestyle- the way we eat, sleep and take care of our environment. A lot of the same strategies I talk about in my best selling book The 7-Day Allergy Makeover!

I can’t wait to have him on my Wellness for Life radio show. I will keep you posted once I secure him as an expert guest!

BTW- I have some really cool news coming out in a couple of weeks. Come back regularly to check to see what is coming up for 2015! Super exciting!

Click on the link below to read the entire CNN article:
https://drsusanne.com/reversedementia

Pina Colada Chia Pudding Recipe

I was inspired to make this yummy dessert from a recipe found in Dr. Alan Christianson’s free cookbook! I revised his vanilla chia pudding recipe and gave it a tropical twist!

You will need these organic ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk (homemade almond milk is my fav)

1/2 cup coconut cream

1/4 cup chia seed

1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

1 tsp alcohol-free stevia

1 tsp alcohol-free vanilla extract

frozen chopped pineapple

Directions:

Add all ingredients except the pineapple in large bowl and mix well so chia seeds do not clump. Set the mixture aside for 20 minutes at room temperature. Pour into single serving cups and pop them into the refrigerator for 1 hour before serving.

Top off each cup with frozen chopped pineapple to get that extra tropical flavor!

Enjoy!

Dr. Susanne Bennettadrenal-reset-diet-book

 

 

 

BTW- I also love the sweet potato hash and the cilantro, lime cucumber salad recipes, you are welcome to download the cookbook here!: https://drsusanne.com/adrenalreset

Are you finding yourself feeling more tired, sluggish and non-motivated year after year during the winter months? And the extra few pounds you gain during the colder months are getting harder and harder to lose, and now you stuck with 10 pounds or more that will not budge?

If so, your “winter blues” may be due to adrenal gland issues! No one knows more about this subject and how to reset these sensitive glands better than my good friend Dr. Alan Christianson.

I am so excited share that he has a new book coming out The Adrenal Reset Diet, explaining a totally different concept on weight loss and rejuvenating your body.

Here is a short video where Dr. C and I talk about his new book, and learn how you can get it as a gift!


You can get the book here: https://drsusanne.com/adrenalreset

Don’t miss out on this generous gift – Dr. C just texted me that he will run out of his complimentary books soon and that’s why I am sending you this email tonight, not tomorrow!

The reason I am so passionate about Dr. C’s book is that I truly believe adrenal exhaustion and stress is one of the deadly silent triggers linked to every modern health problems including allergies, diabetes, heart disease, immune deficiency issues, obesity, cancers and more. That is why in my book, The 7-Day Allergy Makeover, I dedicated the entire last chapter on “Cleaning Up Your Stress”!

We are all walking around “wired and tired” due to our fast paced lifestyle- constantly in this “fight, flight or fright” state or what I call “sympathetic dominance”. This is all regulated by your adrenal glands, and we all need to pay more attention than ever before so we can get back our energy level and restore vibrant health.

In The Adrenal Reset Diet, Dr. C lays out this totally new and clinically proven program, where you will learn:

  • What foods will sabotage your weight loss efforts (You’ll be surprised!)
  • How to beat cravings (Hint: It’s not with will-power)
  • How to boost your energy with a simple tweak
  • How to stabilize your hormones, adrenals and thyroid
  • Foods you can eat to reduce pain

BTW- did I mention that you will also be getting four valuable training videos when you order the free book today?

Grab a copy before they run out! https://drsusanne.com/adrenalreset

To your vibrant health,

Dr. Susanne

P.S. Dr. C says that The Adrenal Reset Diet will show you how you can lose 2.5 inches and 9 pounds or more in one month, without spending hours on the treadmill and without sacrificing all the foods you love! We all need to reset our adrenals!

Bacon-wrapped Smoky Chicken Thighs – 

Can’t wait for you to try – Dianne and I have modified it to fit my ultimate wellness plan.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 chicken thighs

(2 servings)

4 bone-in, skinless chicken thighs 2 teaspoons Smoky Spice Blend*

8 slices of uncured bacon -nitrates free

Preheat oven to 375*F

Sprinkle the chicken thighs with 1 teaspoon of Smoky Spice Blend. Wrap each

thigh in 2 strips of bacon. Sprinkle the chicken with the remaining Smoky Spice

Blend, and bale for approximately minutes or until the internal temperature of

the chicken reaches 165* F.

*Smoky Spice Blend:

1 tablespoon Chipotle Powder

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1 tablespoon onion powder

½ tablespoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon sea salt

½ tablespoon black pepper

Recipe is by Diane Sanfilippo, author of Practical Paleo. Some ingredients have

been revised for Dr. Susanne’s community!