Nutrition and Diet for Arthritis

Like all other autoimmune diseases, the exact cause of arthritis, especially Rheumatoid arthritis is unknown to medical world.

Major culprits of autoimmune conditions are believed to be: poor nutrition and/or food allergies; exposure to the pollutants and heavy metals that contaminate our air, soil and water; overgrowth of pathogens such as bacteria, virus, mold-fungus-yeast and parasites; and toxic vaccinations and medical drugs.

Any of these can cause certain parts of your body, like your joints, to be unrecognizable to your body’s own immune system so that the body’s immune system attacks them as “invaders”. The sad part is that once one autoimmune condition sets in, another autoimmune disease almost always show up.

Nutrition response testing offers a systematic and extremely precise protocol in determining the deepest cause of a body’s autoimmune state.

Having said that, let me introduce several tips to avoid and/or minimize arthritic conditions.

  • Avoid Wheat, Sugar, and Dairies as they cause INFLAMMATION throughout the body. Actually, we avoid these three food groups, most of diseases will get better quite dramatically, in a short period of time.
  • Avoid greasy or spicy foods as they tend to create “dampness and heat” in the body that negatively affect the joints and cartilages.
  • Bone Broth, made of either organic chicken or organic beef (with marrow) as these are filled with collagen, numerous minerals and vitamins, and amino acids.
  • Ginger – A natural anti-inflammatory, available as powdered extracts in capsules as well as alcohol-based extracts. Follow the dosing directions on the label. Or make tea by combining one-half teaspoon of grated ginger root with eight ounces of boiling water. Cover and steep for 10 to 15 minutes, then strain and add honey to taste.
  • Fresh pineapple – Bromelain, an enzyme in pineapple, reduces inflammation. Be sure the pineapple is fresh, not canned or frozen.
  • Cherries – Recent research has shown that tart cherries are an excellent source of nutrients that may help to reduce joint pain and inflammation related to arthritis.
  • Fish – Cold-water fish such as salmon and mackerel contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help keep joints healthy as well as reduce pain and swelling. If you don’t care for fish, consider supplementing your diet with fish oil capsules.
  • Turmeric – Another natural anti-inflammatory. Look for an extract of whole turmeric, in health-food stores; follow the dosage directions on the label.

Ulcerative Colitis – Tips for Dealing With It

Both Western and Chinese medicines recognize the importance of diet and its role in prevention and treatment of ulcerative colitis. Western medicine acknowledges dietary intake of certain factors (such as certain chemicals and drugs) may be linked to increased incidence of ulcerative colitis; Chinese medicine recognizes that dietary intake with excessive cold or raw food may injury the spleen and the stomach. Therefore, diet plays an important role in both prevent and effective treatment of the illness.

Food won’t prevent or cure IBD, but the right diet may diminish symptoms. The strategy is to focus on foods that reduce inflammation, to reestablish healthy bacteria in the gut and to pamper your intestinal tract. Keeping a food diary helps determine which foods trigger flare-ups and which seem to help.

Things to Avoid

  • Avoid any food which may trigger recurrence, such as certain chemicals, raw or cold food. Milk, cheese and other dairy products should be avoided especially if the patients have lactose intolerance.
  • Avoid sugar of all forms; avoid any wheat products especially during acute flare-ups.
  • High roughage food such as raw fruits or vegetables sometimes worsen intestinal obstruction and colic.
  • Alcohol should be avoided as it may be irritating to the stomach and the intestines.
  • Caffeine and carbonated drinks
  • Nuts, seeds, dried fruits
  • Spicy food may trigger certain nerve reactions in the digestive tract.
  • Certain over-the-counter or prescription antidiarrheal drugs may worsen the condition and create toxic megacolon.

What to Add

Everyone has different triggers; therefore it’s difficult to recommend certain types of food and/or supplements. In addition to avoiding the “wrong food,” it is equally important to have adequate calorie and fluid intake as malnutrition and dehydration are common problems associated with ulcerative colitis.  In general, two strategies that work are:

  • A bland, low-fiber may best during acute flares.
  • Eat 5 or 6 small meals a day.

All of the following recommendations should not be taken unless supervised by a qualified health care provider.

  • Oral iron supplements for those with frequent bleeding.
  • Folic acid: Many people who have ulcerative colitis have low levels of folic acid in their blood.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil: DO NOT take high doses of fish oil if you take blood-thinning medication.
  • Probiotics: Consult your doctor to be sure probiotics are appropriate for your case.
  • Vitamin D: is necessary to maintain strong bones. People with ulcerative colitis, especially those who take corticosteroids, often have low levels of vitamin D and are at risk for osteoporosis.
  • Calcium: is also needed for strong bones. Ask your doctor if you need a calcium supplement.
  • N-acetyl glucosamine: Preliminary research suggests that N-acetyl glucosamine supplements or enemas may improve symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Psyllium seeds: Psyllium is a type of insoluble fiber, and may be irritating to some people, especially during flares. Some people may have better results using soluble fiber, such as flax seed or oat bran, in combination with or instead of psyllium.
  • Boswellia: Boswellia has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Curcumin or turmeric: This has anti-inflammatory properties. People with gallbladder disease or gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD), hormone-related cancers, or people who are taking blood-thinning medications, should not take curcumin without first consulting with their doctors.
  • Slippery elm: is a demulcent (protects irritated tissues and promotes their healing). Women who may be pregnant should never take slippery elm.
  • Marshmallow: is a demulcent and emollient. Avoid marshmallow if you have diabetes.
  • Chamomile: is often used to soothe digestive tract. It is usually taken as a tea. Chamomile can cause allergic reactions in some people, particularly those who are sensitive to ragweed. Medicine

The Skin is Our Body’s Largest and Fastest –Growing Organ

The skin is our body’s coat. It also is our largest and fastest-growing organ. The skin reflects and reacts to imbalances within the body’s internal landscape and the effects of the environment. Internal disharmonies caused by strong emotions, diet, and your constitution can contribute to the development of a skin disorder.

skin

Environmental influences, such as wind, dryness, dampness and heat can also trigger or exacerbate skin disorders.

General skin conditions that can be treated with Acupuncture/Chinese Medicine include acne, dermatitis, eczema, pruritus, psoriasis, rosacea, shingles and urticaria (hives).

Evidence that acupuncture and herbal medicine have been used for skin disorders, such as hives, can be found in early medical literature dating back to 3 AD.

Medicinal plants and stone needles were utilized to relieve and cure discomforts of the external areas of the body.

Foods to Help You Look Your Best

Be sure to integrate these items into your diet to help keep your skin look its best:

Vitamin A: Acting as an antioxidant to neutralize harmful elements in our skin, vitamin A helps to prevent wrinkles, resist infection and maintain the skin’s elasticity. One of the best places to get vitamin A is from vegetables that are deep orange in color, such as carrots or sweet potatoes.

Blackberries, Blueberries, Strawberries and Plums: Antioxidants and other phytochemicals in these fruits can protect cells from damage and disintegration, thus guarding against premature aging. In a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, these four fruits weighed in with the highest “total antioxidant capacity” of any food.

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs): Responsible for skin repair, moisture content and flexibility, and because the body cannot produce its own, EFAs must be obtained from one’s diet. Fish, walnuts and flaxseed oil are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

Selenium: An antioxidant mineral responsible for tissue elasticity and healthy skin, selenium can be found in brown rice, turkey, tuna and Brazil nuts

Green Tea: Green tea’s ability to slow down the development of some signs of aging is attributed to its high levels of polyphenols, which have been well-documented for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Water: Essential to maintaining your skin’s elasticity and suppleness.

Nutrition Response Testing for Digestive Health

Acupuncture and Chinese medicine offers extremely effective means of combating both acute and chronic digestive disorders. However, when it comes to identifying specific diet changes or eliminating pathogens from the GI tract, Nutrition Response Testing offers far more detailed, individually-tailored information.

nutrition response testing for digestive heqlth

For instance, Nutrition Response Testing can immediately identify which food items wreak havoc on one’s digestive health, and whether or not one’s digestive system needs additional enzymes.

Typically, “wheat and sugar” are the major culprits, although eggs, dairy products, soy, rye, nuts, and other grains can cause violent reactions for some people. Once identified as “threats,” patients are advised to stay away from those food items for at least 90 days. In the mean time, various real-food-based supplements are introduced to neutralize “overly sensitized” tissues in the GI tract.

nutrition response testing for digestive heqlth 2

Not only food items, Nutrition Response Testing can easily detect whether one’s digestive disorder is caused by pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, yeast, fungus, and/or parasites. Metal and/or chemical toxins embedded in the GI tract can be identified as well.

We have found that most of digestive disorders are caused by combined effects of food items, pathogens, and toxins. We HIGHLY recommend Nutrition Response Testing for anyone who experiences digestive issues.

nutrition response testing for digestive health 2

Is your digestive system functioning as well as it can? Call (201)760-8811 today for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Managing Diabetes with Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

It is estimated that 25.8 million people in the United States have diabetes, a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin.

Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life.

Untreated diabetes affects the whole body and can lead to other medical problems, including heart disease, kidney failure, blindness, peripheral neuropathy, digestive disorders and periodontal disease.

diabetes and acupuncture

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 1 in 4 people remain unaware that they live with diabetes. Sometimes the body will give warning signs that a person’s sugar metabolism is out of whack. Common signs of Type II(adult-onset) diabetes include:

  • Increased hunger (especially after eating)
  • Dry mouth
  • Frequent urination or urinary infections
  • Unexplained weight loss (even though you are eating and feel hungry)
  • Fatigue (weak, tired feeling)
  • Blurred vision
  • Headaches

Diabetes is Called “A Wasting Disease” in Oriental Medicine

Acupuncture and Oriental medicines have been used to treat diabetes for over 2000 years.

According to Oriental medicine, diabetes is called “a wasting disease” caused by an imbalance of the cyclical flow of Qi within the meridians and organ systems.

This particular imbalance produces heat that depletes the body’s fluids and Qi, causing symptoms such as extreme fatigue, lethargy, unexplained weight loss, excessive thirst, excessive urination, excessive eating, slow healing of cuts and wounds, infections, irritability, tingling or numbness in the extremities, and blurry vision—all of which are signs of a person being “wasted.”

The treatment for diabetes will focus on regulating the circulation of blood and Qi and balancing the organ systems to improve pancreatic function and address internal heat and the depletion of fluids.

diabetes and acupuncture2

In addition, acupuncture can treat peripheral neuropathy, one of the most devastating symptoms of diabetes.

Common signs of peripheral neuropathy include tingling, numbness, loss of sensation, muscle weakness and pain. For some people, it is experienced as the uncomfortable sensation of “pins and needles”, or burning pain (especially at night) of their hands or feet. Others may suffer even more extreme symptoms such as muscle atrophy, paralysis, or organ or gland dysfunction.

Oriental medicine teaches that peripheral neuropathy is due to dampness moving to the limbs, where it obstructs the flow of Qi (energy) and blood within them.

The treatment is twofold: to treat the underlying factor that is causing this dampness to accumulate, and to directly facilitate the circulation of Qi and blood in the affected area.

By improving circulation, the nerve tissues of the affected area can be nourished to repair function and reduce pain.

diabetis and acupuncture 4

Well-Known Procedures in Managing Diabetes

There are a number of well-publicized recommendations in managing diabetes.

1. Diet Changes

Anything too sweet must go. While a sweet taste delights our taste buds, overindulgence can cause or worsen digestive problems and upset our metabolic and emotional balance. In Oriental medicine, meats such as pork and chicken are considered sweet.

Vegetables such as yams, sweet potatoes, corn, snow peas, squash and even turnips are also considered sweet.

Anything heavily processed or too greasy must be abstained. Too much dairy, deep-fried foods or canned foods must be avoided. Even fruits are recommended only in moderate amounts due to their relatively high sugar content.

2. Adopt Healthy Life Habits

Healthy habits such as maintaining optimal weight, avoiding exposure to toxins, following a well-supervised exercise program, and limiting or avoiding alcohol consumption can reduce the physical and emotional effects of diabetes.

3. Boost Circulation with Massage (for neuropathy patients)

Massage can help boost circulation, which is generally poor and leaves these areas vulnerable to trauma. You can stimulate your feet, lower legs, hands and arms with gentle massage using light pressure.

4. Relax to Reduce External Triggers

Consider relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, self-hypnosis or biofeedback.

5. Soak for Pain Relief

A warm foot bath with Epsom salt may also help relieve pain. If there is loss of sensation in the hands or feet, you should avoid extreme temperatures, as you may not feel the damaging effects.