A Conversation with Dr. Heather Hunt DC and her husband Dr. Luke Hunt PhD

We live in a world that has changed drastically in the last decade and even more so in the last few years.  Where we used to be able to look to the past to help predict the future, we can no longer do that.  Global warming, climate change, environmental toxicity, new chemicals in our food, and globalization has made it impossible to know how the world or our bodies will be in the near or far future.  Even morality, which one would think would be universal, has been usurped by electing and allowing the president of our country to blatantly lie. It makes it hard to know where we stand as individuals and how to feel balanced in these shifting sands.  Our system goes to panic with this unpredictability where A + B no longer equals C, and it is negatively affecting our biology and general wellness.  We need as humans to upgrade to a new operating system where we can embrace this unpredictable dynamic state and create a new "set point" within our biology in which we can find stability, health, wholeness and freedom. 

This audio recording is literally "pillow talk" between my husband Luke (a Standford PhD scientist) and I.  It happened last night in bed.  I asked him to help me figure out something that I was noticing in a craniosacral treatment I gave that day and as he started talking I realized I needed to record it because he was giving me important information to solve some puzzles. 

So please excuse the imperfect iphone recording and enjoy the content of this.  I think it is an important piece about what can move us forward as individuals and as a human species.

The Wisdom of Self Check-IN by Dr. Heather Hunt DC

The Wisdom of Self Check-IN

 

There is so much going on in the world right now it is hard to stay balanced, joyful and calm.  When one is feeling “off” (anxious, irritable, frustrated, angry, sad, panic, reactive, exhausted) it is important to run through a mental check list to see what these feelings may be a result of so that we can more quickly get back to a more stable, balanced state.  There are so many things that can determine how we “feel.”  We survive in the intersections of our own physiology and mental/ emotional/ spiritual states.  Since we live as part of a greater whole, we are also “at the affect” of people we are in relationship with, our communities, and our nations, indeed, a collective consciousness (meaning we are affected by these things). We are also at the affect of our earth, our weather, and many would argue our solar system.  Since many of us are very sensitive, it is important to check into all of these systems when we feel something is “off” in ourselves. 

Here is a simple check-IN list to naturally restore balance and understanding for what it is to be you in the moment.  I hope you feel it to be IN-powering!

1. What emotion/feeling am I experiencing right now? (happy, sad, scared, angry, confused, etc)________________________________________________________

How is my body doing? ________________________________________________

3.     When was the last time I ate? (blood sugar is so important!  Eat a combination of  a protein, fat and carbohydrate every 2-3 hours)_______________________________

4.     How did I sleep last night?_____________________________________________

5.     Where am I in my menstrual cycle (women often are more sensitive/variable in the luteal phase, the two weeks before you get your cycle)? _________________________

6.     Am I just exhausted?  (so much of our problem is FATIGUE!)  If so, how can I rest today? _________________________________________________________________________

7.     Why am I exhausted? _______________________________________________________________

a.     Lack of sleep?  __________________________________

b.     Have I been running in fight or flight mode and my adrenal glands/stress response system is depleted?  ______________________________________________

c.     How is my thyroid?  Is it low? (am I gaining weight, losing hair, feeling depressed, constipated and overwhelmed?)  If you have a history of thyroid disorder, please get your TSH tested at least!  We can do this at our office for under $20 and you can order your own testing through Direct Labs. _____________________________________________________________

d.     Stress Level (1-10, 10 is high)__________________________________

8.     What are my main stressors in this moment? _________________________________________________________________________

9.     Do I have any control over these stressors? _________________________________________________________________________

10.   How can I better my own reaction to these stressors if I have no control over them?____________________________________________________________________

If you go through your own system and realize that everything is fine, but you still feel “off” (example: I slept well, just ate, and just had a great weekend, why do I feel panic?) then examine---

What am I “at the affect of?”

This can merely be collective.  Things outside of your control that you are affected by.  Like when you wake up in a panic for no apparent reason then later in the day realize why you had the panic in your system when you see news headlines, find out the stars shifted, that there was a massacre somewhere in the world, or that someone you know just had a tragedy.  The more attention you pay to yourself, the more you realize the collective really does influence you as you will become more and more aware that you are part of a unified whole.  It is like in Star Wars, where the Jedi Masters say, “I feel a disturbance in the force.”  That is real!


Obviously we are “at the affect” of our partner’s, children’s, family’s and friend’s wellness.  When someone is having a hard time that you care about, it is hard to stay balanced and well ourselves.  My tools for dealing with this are to remember that I don’t have to “fix” everything.  Indeed, it is rather presumptuous to think I know what is best and to try to “fix” things towards that end.  Also, I remember that it is important to be “in relationship with” but not “responsible for” (obviously we are responsible our young children and for ourselves/our own actions which if we stay aware of we should be more pleasant to be around).  Finally, I turn towards trying to trust and have faith.  Whatever your belief system, I think we can mostly agree that we are part of an interconnected whole of which we are expressions of.  There is a love/divine, which is the undercurrent of this wholeness, and in that love things tend to be exactly right, even if we only get that 20/20 vision in hindsight.

Remember, things may draw your attention for a reason.  If you wake up thinking about politics, global warming, a friend, an “enemy” there may be something you can do about it.  Since we are all webbed, merely paying attention and offering love/prayer you have a way you can help the situation.  The Tibetan Buddhists have a Meta-Meditation (loving kindness) and that is something that can actually create great change.  Repeat, “may all beings be peaceful, may all beings be happy, may all beings be free.”  The Hawaiians developed the Ho’oponopono prayer, which also really changes the entergetics of the situation.  Repeat, “I am sorry, please forgive me, I love you, thank you.”  You will be amazed at how bringing this transparency to a situation diffuses the stress immediately.

It is helpful to feel connected to a unified whole.  To feel the undercurrent of love and light in our world that Creation is reaching out to you as you reflect it and embody it.  I stay reminded of this by paying attention to synchronicities and signs.  Synchronicities are merely things that you realize are not random, but are really a gift.  Signs for me are more like rainbows, seeing the clock at 3:33, 4:44 etc.  It is important what you pay attention to, because what you pay attention to gets anchored in your being and becomes a reality.  I encourage you to pay attention to what is life-enhancing and what supports life.  Don’t feel guilty if you ignore that which is life-defeating or goes against life (like the news!)  You can notice them, but seek out/share the stories of hope and progressive forward movement if you want to have that life-enhancing, hopeful, unified reality to be the dominant one.

Weather can also really influence your moods.  Track your feelings seasonally and see if you are really one of those people that dip in the winter, etc.  If so, get your Vitamin D levels checked and I would recommend getting a general blood panel.  Physiology really does affect mood!  If your Vitamin D levels are low and your B vitamins are low it is hard to be “happy.” 

You can start tracking yourself with this simple tracker

1.     Today (at this moment) I feel_____________________

2.     My energy levels is _________ out of 10 (10 being the best)

3.     I slept _________ out of 10 (10 being the best)

4.     What did I eat today? (avoid much caffeine, sugar, simple carbohydrates and ALL trans fats) ________________________________________________________________________

5.     What times did I eat?  (eat every 2-3 hours if you are the typical person who runs low blood sugar/hypoglycemic) _______________________________________________________________________

6.     When was the last time I had my thyroid and or thyroid medication checked? ____________

7.     Are there any known disturbances in the field?____________________________

8.     Is there anything I can do about these disturbances or do I just need to put intention there/pray/trust? ______________________________________________________________________

 

The Importance of Rest and Sleep

Don’t underestimate the importance of rest!  It is recommended that you sleep 7-8 hours a night (at least) and more if stress is high.  Try to be asleep by 10-10:30pm for the most regenerating sleep.  Remember your organs, hormones, and stress response system gets rejuvenated during the night.


If you are having trouble falling asleep, consider changing your bedtime routine.  “Sleep hygiene” is real and there is much information online (which I have a difficult time following personally!)  Make sure you catch yourself before you get a second wind that can keep you awake past a healthy bedtime!

If you have trouble staying asleep that could indicate a problem with your blood sugar or adrenal glands (stress response system). 

1.     Try eating a good snack (protein/fat/carbohydrate) before bed (whole milk yogurt and some homemade granola, a handful of nuts with raisins, cheese and a ½ apple, etc.  For more information on blood sugar refer to my hand out on hypoglycemia.  Going twelve or more hours between meals is too much!

2.     If you try the snack before bed and you are still waking in middle of the night, especially if it is between 2-4am and your mind is “busy” or “racing” that is likely due to a dysregulated adrenal system.  Please refer to the Adrenal Health articles on my website or Dr. Aviva Romm has great info on her website and a book on it!

3.     I keep an adrenal calming natural lotion on my nightstand and use it if I wake in the middle of the night (AdrenaCalm from Apex Energetics available at our office) and after using it within 10-15 minutes I usually take a deep breath and feel peaceful again, which helps me better fall back to sleep.  If you try AdrenaCalm or an equivalent natural remedy and it does not work for you, you may need to use melatonin to re-train your system. 

4.     I personally love the NeuroScience product Ultra Kavanase PM which is melatonin and neurotransmitter support.  It works fabulously and we have been successful in getting people off Ambien with it.  Remember, melatonin is in a dance with cortisol, when one is up the other is down.  So when you take melatonin you are interfering with that dance and it is not a solution, just a way to get enough rest to reset your cortisol rhythm so that you can sleep without the help of sleep-aids.

 

The Importance of Tummy Time

 

Babies have it rough.  Smashed up in utero, the act of being born, the shock of infanthood and newness.  One of the most important ways to help your baby deal with all of this both on a physical and emotional level is TUMMY TIME!  Strangely simple.  My colleague Michelle Emmanual is a Tummy Time expert and her website is filled with important information.

http://www.tummytimemethod.com/

Anxiety caused by your Adrenal Glands?

Dr. Aviva Romm has another great article and podcast on Anxiety and Adrenals.  I personally know this connection and as I have learned how to calm my adrenal glands and lower my cortisol my anxiety gets better!  I love Apex Entergetics' product called AdrenaCalm.  It is a cream you can put on when you feel wired, anxious and stressed and it helps to calm.  Wonderful!

http://avivaromm.com/adrenal-anxiety-connection/

Post-Partum Thyroid-- What ALL women need to know!

Two years one of my best friends called me and said she was just feeling really tired after the birth of her second daughter.  Instead of just offering adrenal (stress) support supplements, I asked her to do my blood work to make sure we were not missing anything.  I was SHOCKED to find that all 9 of her thyroid markers were out of lab range normal.  She had raging Post-partum thyroiditis and we caught something that goes missed on many.  Since then I have devoted much time to learning about this condition that affects so many (1 in 20!!!).  It has been disappointing how little good information I have found... Until NOW!  Dr. Aviva Romm just came out with a great Podcast and article on it.  Please listen and share!

Why I Threw Out My Multivitamins

This Is Why I Threw Out My Multivitamin

Suzy Cohen RP

From Dr. Heather Hunt DC

I love this article written by pharmacist Suzy Cohen.  I have never been a fan of multi-vitamins myself, and she articulates my feelings about it well.  I am also a real stickler for quality. Personally, I try to eat organic whole foods and stay away from synthetic ingredients, GMOs, etc.  This is why I only carry a few lines of supplements in our office.  There truly is a quality difference and just like the food I buy, I want my vitamins to be top quality.  And I do think that natural supplements can be absolutely vital in improving our health.  Instead of a general multi-vitamin, I recommend doing some blood testing, system surveys and a personal intake with a qualified health care professional to access what your body truly needs, instead of throw a bunch of possible synthetic harmful substances at it.  I do not recommend buying supplements from GNC, Costco, Drug stores or online retailers selling cheap supplements.  In this case, often you do get what you pay for. Indeed, the New Your Times (Feb 2015) and others reported a raid on popular brands of supplements and stated this:

“The authorities said they had run tests on popular store brands of herbal supplements at the retailers — Walmart, Walgreens, Target and GNC — which showed that roughly four out of five of the products contained none of the herbs listed on their labels. In many cases, the authorities said, the supplements contained little more than cheap fillers like rice and house plants, or substances that could be hazardous to people with food allergies.”

Because the FDA does not regulate supplements, it is important that you really investigate the quality of what you are ingesting.  Indeed, they may be doing more harm than good.

Yours in heath,  Dr. Heather

 

From Suzy:

I’m just like you and have spent a lot of hard-earned money on multivitamins figuring they will work behind the scenes and improve or maintain my good health.  I was never really sure if they did anything for me, so I’d just keep switching brands. It’s not like I felt anything happening, nor did I feel more energy. If I missed a day, I wouldn’t even notice. Was I just making ‘expensive’ urine?

Call me cynical but if you have to spend that much money advertising to convince me your stuff is good, how much money have you put into the formula? Is it possible that companies multi-million dollar advertising budget is just causing you to skimp on ingredients?  And in order to produce massive quantities of multivitamins, cheap excipients have to be used in order to make their machines run faster. It’s a universal dilemma, one that I have faced myself. Take a multivitamin or not? So I don’t. I threw them all out recently.

I used to think multivitamins filled a nutritional gap, but today I think differently. There’s no way that 1.7 mg of any B vitamin will boost energy, or 20mg of magnesium could improve mood. I’m beginning to realize that multivitamins are an absolute joke! It’d be funny except the jokes on us, and you spent good money on them. Here’s my rationale:

Negligible amounts- There are so many nutrients in a multivitamin that the amounts of each become negligible. For example, 1 mg of pyridoxine (B6) doesn’t impact you metabolically speaking. I think it’s on the label ‘for show’ as clearly, this amount doesn’t optimize health. By the time this 1 mg gets past your digestive tract, hardly anything could have made it to your blood stream, no less your nerves where B6 is required. The same goes for cyanocobalamin, a typical form of vitamin B12. One popular multi-billion dollar producing brand has 1 mcg cyanocobalamin in it! MICROGRAM folks, that is just one-thousandth of a milligram. With hundreds of B12 dependent metabolic reactions (including methylation), what do you think that 1 microgram does for you? I’ll tell you, nothing! It’s there ‘for show.’

Allergies– Multivitamins have upwards of 68 different ingredients, some of which are synthetic, are you sure you’re not allergic to this stuff?

Inactive forms– It’s one thing to take insignificant amounts of a nutrient, but there are usually completely inactive vitamins in your multivite, and they remain inactive until converted by your liver to something that could work. After you take cyanocobalamin B12, your body breaks it into cyanide and cobalamin, and then you have to methylate it. Superior forms of B12 are methylcobalamin, hydroxycobalamin or adenosylcobalamin.

Potential toxins– Let’s revisit that cyanocobalamin B12, what I consider to be inferior to other B12 supplements. It contains minute amounts of cyanide which has low potential to do harm when bound to organic cobalamin, but still, I don’t want it in my body even in teeny-tiny amounts.

Cramps and diarrhea– Yep, you could get that due to the addition of cheap forms of magnesium such as the “oxide” form. Gentler forms of magnesium include the “chelated” forms, or threonate, or glycinate.

Artificial colors– One popular brand contains three artificial colors FD&C Red #40, Blue #2 and Yellow #6 and there is a controversy over the safety of those dyes. I’m not sure why colors matter on a multivitamin but apparently the biggest makers like to use them. If you have all the money in the world, why not choose natural colors?! There are many, including blueberry juice concentrate, carotene from carrots, paprika, beet juice, purple sweet potato, hibiscus, natural astaxanthin, CoQ10 (it’s a beautiful orange) and red cabbage extract.

The greatest deception is that the minerals from these multivitamins will get into your bones. Magnesium oxide and calcium carbonate don’t penetrate your bone cells well. They have a tough time leaving your intestines so if you’re taking these minerals to improve bone mass, make sure you take easy-on-the-tummy supplements that break apart easily and travel to your bones.

In my humble opinion, it’s not possible to take a multivitamin once daily, that contains biologically active ingredients, and has them in dosages that advance your health.  This is why I threw out my multivitamins. You can get biologically active nutrients if you just eat real food, nothing from a box or can. Your diet should include the basics like salads, greens, nuts, seeds, citrus fruits, berries and of course, lean, clean protein.

http://suzycohen.com/articles/multivitamin/

Urinary Tract Infections-- what to know

D-Mannose for Urinary Tract Infection Prevention

By Dr. Mercola

 

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are the second most common type of infection in the body, sending more than eight million people to their health care providers every year in the US alone.1

Women suffer from UTIs far more often than men, and more than 50 percent of women will develop a UTI during her lifetime. For about 20 percent of women, the infection becomes recurrent and some will suffer from three or more UTIs a year.

This is concerning, as the treatment most often recommended by conventional medicine is antibiotics. Antibiotics kill even the friendly micro-organisms in your body, leading to major disruptions in health (including an increased risk of yeast infections, among other issues, in women). If you suffer from UTIs on occasion or more frequently, there's a natural treatment you should know about that is effective in more than 90 percent of cases.

In a study of more than 300 women with a history of recurrent UTIs, researchers treated the women with either two grams of D-mannose, 50 milligrams of an antibiotic, or no treatment daily for six months. D-Mannose is a naturally occurring sugar that's closely related to glucose.

Only 15 percent of those taking the D-mannose had a recurrent UTI compared to 20 percent for the antibiotic group (both of which were significantly lower than the no-treatment group).2 However, the incidence of side effects was significantly lower in the D-mannose group than the antibiotics group.

Dr. Jonathan Wright was among the first to begin using D-mannose for UTIs some 20 years ago, and in his experience administering it to more than 200 patients, the treatment is 85-90 percent effective.

It works for treating acute UTIs, for prophylaxis in women prone to recurrent infections or for the prevention of post-intercourse UTIs, and it's safe for both adults and children. Dr. Wright recommends the following doses:

·       For treatment of UTIs: 1 teaspoon (about 2 grams) for adults, ½ to 1 teaspoon for children, dissolved in a glass of water and repeated every two to three hours. Continue for two to three days after symptoms have disappeared.

·       For preventing recurring infections: Start with the dosages listed above for treatment, then gradually reduce the dose, if possible.

·       For prevention of post-intercourse UTIs: Take 1 tablespoon one hour prior to intercourse and another tablespoon immediately afterward.

 

Why Does D-Mannose Work for Treating UTIs?

More than 90 percent of UTIs are caused by Escherichia coli (E. coli), which is normally found in your intestinal tract. Problems only arise when this ordinary bacterium is present in high numbers in places where it shouldn't be—like your urinary system.

When normal E. coli gets into your urinary tract and multiplies, you experience the usual signs and symptoms of a UTI:

·       Burning with urination

·       Frequent urges to urinate

·       Lower abdominal pain or aching

·       Blood in your urine (sometimes, but not always)

·       Cloudy urine

The cell walls of each E. coli are covered with tiny fingerlike projections called fimbria allowing them to "stick" to the inner walls of your bladder and even work their way upward to your ureter and kidneys.

Because they cling to your urinary organs, they can't simply be washed out when you urinate. These little fingerlike projections are made of an amino acid-sugar complex, a glycoprotein called lectin, which makes them sticky.

Lectin on the bacteria's fimbria binds to mannose, which is produced by your cells and covers the internal lining of your urinary organs. This mannose allows the bacteria to adhere to you—like Velcro. But as Dr. Wright explains, when you take D-mannose it sticks to the E. coli so it is can be effectively "rinsed" out by your urination:3

 

If You Have a UTI, Try D-Mannose First

In the majority of cases, UTIs can be effectively treated without antibiotics by using D-mannose. This is why, if you have a UTI, you should try D-mannose first. It's important to note that D-mannose only works for UTIs caused by E. coli, This represents 90 percent (or more) of infections. If you want to be sure, your physician can order a urine culture to identify the bacteria present, so you'll know if yours is one of the minority of cases not caused by E. coli.

The majority of urinary tract infections can be cured when symptoms first arise, or prevented altogether, using D-mannose and the hygiene steps outline below. Occasionally, despite preventative measures, a kidney infection can develop. If you suspect you have a kidney infection (symptoms include fever and pain in your back, side, groin, or abdomen) see a physician.

 

What About Cranberry Juice for UTIs?

Many people are aware of the home remedy of drinking cranberry juice for UTIs, and this is because the active ingredient in cranberry juice is D-mannose. D-mannose can actually be derived from berries, peaches, apples, and some other plants. So why not drink cranberry juice instead of taking D-mannose in supplement form?

The amount of D-mannose in cranberry juice is significantly less, making it much less effective. Plus, cranberry juice is high in sugar, which adds stress to your immune system and can fuel the growth of pathogenic bacteria in your gut. Pure D-mannose is about 10-50 times stronger than cranberry, non-toxic and completely safe, with NO adverse effects.

 

Natural Steps to a Healthy Urinary System

The most important factor in the overall health of your urinary tract is drinking plenty of pure, fresh water every day. Adequate hydration is extremely important for preventing UTIs (not to mention, is the number one risk factor for kidney stones). As a woman, there are additional hygiene steps you can take to maintain a healthy urinary tract:

·       Urinate when you feel the need. Don't resist the urge to go

·       Wipe from front to back to prevent bacteria from entering your urethra

·       Take showers instead of tub baths. Avoid hot tubs/Jacuzzis

·       Cleanse your genital area prior to and after sexual intercourse

·       Avoid using feminine hygiene sprays, which may irritate your urethra, and use only white unscented toilet paper to avoid potential dye reactions

·       Avoid antibacterial soaps

Mercola, Dr. "D-Mannose for UTI Prevention Validated in a Clinical Trial." Mercola.com. N.p., 28 Apr. 2014. Web. 08 Apr. 2016. <http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/04/28/d-mannose-uti-prevention.aspx>.

 

Other Suggestions:

Uva Ursi herb tincture from your local health food store

You can use probiotic capsules as vaginal suppositories to increase healthy bacteria in that areas

Conscious Healing

I have been increasingly interested in the role of consciousness in healing.  After over 7 years of being a chiropractor, I feel like I understand physical structure and function.  After three years of Functional Medicine practice I am really getting a handle on physiology and nutrition.  But why aren't some people getting all the way better still?  Mental/emotional/spiritual.  This has been my quest since last Fall to understand this other part of ourselves.  I thank Jessica Flanigan http://aiplifestyle.com/ and Tantra Maat for their wisdom on this journey.  Here is an interview I partook in last week that hope you find interesting if you too are curious about how consciousness and love fit into your healing process.

http://events.instantteleseminar.com/?eventid=81513840

Dr. Heather’s Advice for Pregnancy & Postpartum: What do I want pregnant women & new moms to know?

  Education

*CHOICE you have a choice.  You can choose what feels best for you and your new family.  Make choices out of a place of wholeness and empowerment, not out of place of fear.  Practice using that motherly intuition, even if your baby is still on the inside! 

*READING do not read the typical pregnancy/birth books.  They are fear-based and filled with mis-information.  Refer to my recommended book list.

*READ The BabySense Secret by Meg Faure.  It is the best book I have found on parenting your baby from a sensory perspective.  If you buy one book, buy this.  I do not endorse her feeding advice though, but the rest is great.

Support

*SOMETHING along the way will surprise you in how hard it is.  It may pregnancy, birth or postpartum.  Talk to other women and ask for help from everyone around you. 

*REST more than you think you need to throughout pregnancy: especially the few weeks before and at least 6 weeks afterwards.  But expect to be very tired and recovering for up to one-year post-partum with your first baby especially. 

*ENCOURAGE dad/partner to take as much time off as possible to be with the new baby and support the new mommy.  I really think this first year is a crucial time for development of the deeper patterns, feelings of wholeness and social development.  It is said that the more dependent you let a baby be, the more independent and self confident they will be later in life.

*USE your local resources!  We have great alternative health care providers, lactation consultants, mom’s groups, post-natal yoga classes, etc.  Find like-minded women and families.  Create a mom’s group or join an existing group.  The Nest in Grass Valley is an amazing local resource.

Health

*TREAT YOURSELF to chiropractic, craniosacral, massage, acupuncture, and other bodywork during and after pregnancy!  Chiropractic can keep the pelvis open and balanced throughout pregnancy.  It can also be very useful postpartum as your pelvis is repositioning after birth and as the relaxin leaves your system.  Postpartum is a good time to change chronic pain patterns due to structural patterns and misalignments. 

*PLAN AHEAD make a post-partum plan where you freeze meals or get meals delivered for at least 2 weeks.  Postpartum is harder then you think and it tends to be overlooked with the focus emphasizing the birth only.

*NUTRITION eat an insane amount of saturated fat during pregnancy and postpartum: Butter, eggs, animal fats (leave the skin on chicken and eat it, or else put some butter on top of it), raw whole milk/yogurt products, kefir and coconut oil.  Your hormones are made of these fats and cholesterol, and you pregnant women know this is a hormonal time!  You need to constantly replenish the building blocks so that you do not become depleted (which leads to tiredness, general dis-ease, adrenal exhaustion, mood swings, etc).  Olive oil alone doesn’t count.  In fact, it should only be used as a dressing as it gets unstable when cooked at higher temperatures.

*Eat an insane amount of fermented food during pregnancy and afterwards.  You need two cups a day (sauerkraut, yogurt, kefir, miso) or else take a probiotic supplement to make your own gut healthy to pass onto your baby.  Your baby is born with a sterile intestinal tract and its first inoculation with bacteria is the journey through the birth canal.  If you have a tendency towards yeast infections (candida, etc), use a probiotics as a vaginal suppository daily during pregnancy or at least for the last few weeks before delivery. We carry medical grade probiotics and also Dr. Dale has a informative and entertaining articles on gut health in his book, Guide to Healthy Living available online and at our office.

*PRENATALS keep taking your pre-natal vitamins after the birth, or better yet ask me for my recommendation on a woman’s multi-vitamin.  You need this extra nutrition more than you might realize and I have some great suggestions.

*ADRENALS: Ask me about adrenal support or read my adrenal health hand out.  Your adrenals are the endocrine glands that secrete your stess hormomes.  Pregnancy and postpartum are times of huge life changes and thus stressful events. Many women get adrenal fatigued and feel mentally foggy, forgetful, have increased anxiety or mood disorders, have sweet cravings and generally just lack the kind of energy they are used to.  Likely you need adrenal support. I use various adrenal support that are safe for pregnancy and breast-feeding and are cost-effective. They will nourish your adrenals so that you can get back on your feet again.

*POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION and BABY BLUES While many women experience some mild mood changes during or after the birth of a child (“Baby blues”), up to 1 in 8 women experience more significant symptoms of depression or anxiety. Please know that with informed care you can prevent a worsening of these symptoms and can fully recover.  www.postpartum.net is a great support network and they have a free hotline.

 

Baby

*CRANIOSACRAL even the most successful birth is traumatic for both mom and baby.  Due to this, I recommend a baby craniosacral visit for all babies. I like to treat them within the first 3 months of age.  Colic is not normal.  This can usually be helped through cranial work.

*BREASTFEED your baby if at all possible.  It will be one of the greatest gifts you can ever give them, the gift of health.  Your baby is born without a mature immune system and s/he will depend on your immune system that is transmitted through breast milk especially for the first year. Your milk also has the perfect composition for both neurological and gastrointestinal growth and development.

*VACCINATIONS do not vaccinate your baby at birth.  I am not against vaccination, but I am VERY AGAINST vaccinating your baby the day it is born with the Hepatitis B vaccine.  This disease is passed the way AIDs is (through blood and bodily secretions).  Good chance your baby will not be sexually active with infected partners the first multiple years of life!  If you choose to vaccinate, wait until you get to know your baby first so you can tell if there are any adverse effects of the vaccinations.  Only get one shot at a time.  This way your baby can actually mount an appropriate immune response against one vaccine and not be bombarded with many. My dad, Dr. Dale Jacosbon DC has an informative essay on Vaccine Information and Safety.

*USE CLOTH DIAPERS they are so easy now with the new designs.  They cost a quarter of the price of paper diapers.  You can use them on multiple children.  They are better for your baby and the earth.  Enough said.

*IF FORMULA FED if your baby or other babies you know are formula fed, I recommend giving this baby probiotics the whole time the baby is on formula.  We carry International Nutrition’s Baby Biotics and it is a great product.  Always use organic formula, no soy, and if you are ambitious make your own!  Recipe at westonaprice.com.

 

Recommended Reading

Our Website has tons of great information, www.jacobsonchiropracticinc.com

Dr. Dale Jacobson’s Guide to Healthy Living. Hard copies at our office or online


The BabySense Secret by Megan Faure.  And anything else by Megan including Sleep Sense and Toddler Sense.  Everyone should read Baby Sense, it is invaluable for caring for your baby.  It is my absolute favorite.

Anything by Ina May Gaskin or Dr. Sears

Nourishing Traditions Cookbooks, Sally Fallon

 

 

Pregnancy, Birth and Postpartum Nutritional Support Protocol

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The intention of this handout is to best support your pregnancy, birth and postpartum time with quality supplements and natural remedies I have found helpful both during my own 3 pregnancies and also in my practice.  It is not intended to replace professional advice and I advise you to consult with a licensed health care professional before taking new remedies/ supplements.  All these supplements/remedies are available for sale at our office.

Furthermore, self-care is essential in this time as you are paving the way for a new little being to be in our world, so I strongly recommend proper rest, nutrition, and physical care such as chiropractic, craniosacral and massage. 

Support for Pregnancy


Liver support: (if you have swelling, itchy skin, extreme hormonal mood swings, etc)
Herblore Liver Tonic for Pregnancy- can dose up to 2 droppers-full 3x/ day

Livaplex by Standard Process 2 caps, 2x/day

Adrenal/Stress/Fatigue: (if you feel abnormally tired, are not sleeping well or depending on sugar/caffeine to get your energy up to make it through the day)
Cytocyme AD by Biotics, 1 with breakfast, 1 with lunch, can build up to 2 in AM, 2 with lunch


Iron Deficiency Anemia or Low Iron Levels: (fatigue, pale skin)
Hemevite by Apex Entergetics- an iron in dessicated grass fed liver, an excellent source of Vitamin B12.  Work up to taking 3 caps, 2 times a day. 

Hemeplex—Alison Osborn’s recommendation at Briarpatch

Gall Bladder: (pain under your right rib cage or under your right shoulder blade, especially after eating fats or high carb meals.  Please tell your doctor/birth provider if you have this)

Take all together:

AF Betafood by Standard Process, 2 with each meal

Zypan by Standard Process, 2 with each meal

Cholacol by Standard Process, 2 with each meal

Recommendation for Prenatal vitamin: Designs for Health prenatal vitamin, this has methylated B vitamins, which is important because most of us do not absorb B vitamins well.

Rash of Pregnancy/Itchy skin:  (Itchy skin or rash especially on trunk of body, please tell your doctor/care-provider if you are experiencing this)

Itch Relief by Herblore, also consider Liver support as this rash manifests with liver congestion

Acid reflux/ heartburn:  Enzymix Pro by Apex Energetics, 1 cap before each meal OR

Zypan by Standard Process, 2 before each meal

Gestational Diabetes or General Blood Sugar Support/multivitamin  

Glysen by Apex Entergetics.  Helps regulate blood sugar levels. 2 caps, 3x a day after meals

-or- SP Complete smoothie mix from Standard Process (2 scoopers a day)

Adrenal support is necessary, too, please refer to adrenal section of hand out

Constipation: 400-600 mg of Magnesium Citrate mixed with 1 TBS Calcium Lactate at night before bed as needed.  I digested this combo much better than Calm Cal/Mg.

Leg Cramps: Magnesium Malate or Glycinate, 400-600 mg at night before bed


Headaches/Migraines: Riboflavin (B2), 400mg at night.  Magnesium Glycinate or Malate (up to 600mg/day, broken into 2 doses).  Omega 3s (Cod Liver Oil), Host Defense mushroom immune support.  Hot bath with Epson salt, cold wash cloth on forehead.  Avoid caffeine.

Sinus Pressure/congestion: Craniosacral Therapy, Echinacea, Vitamin D, Omega 3s

Anxiety/Insomnia: Adrena-Calm from Apex.  A cream that literally lowers your adrenaline/cortisol levels.  ½ to 2 pumps, apply onto soft skin (underarms, thighs, belly)

Support for Birth/Directly after birth

Postpartum Sitz Bath by Herblore (wonderful for healing!)

After Pain Tincture by Herblore and Calcium Lactate powder from Standard Process (for the post-partum contractions of the uterus shrinking back to size)

Homeopathic Remedies: Arnica (for muscle injuries) and Aconite (for shock).

 

Support for Postpartum


Mastitis/Clogged Milk Ducts (pain in breast, redness can manifest in fever and flu like symptoms.  Often occurs with increased stress, so take Poke Root when you travel!)

Poke Root by Herblore, works usually in 1 day! 

Stay on Pre Natal support, consider adrenal support


Increasing breast milk supply 

Nursing Tea or tincture by Herblore (the tincture is much stronger than the tea)

If you are having consistent problems with milk supply, please come in and we will test your thyroid and sex hormone levels.

Adrenals: Cytozyme AD is safe for nursing but I like to transition to an herbal support like Withania Complex by MediHerb or Adrenatone by Designs for Health (ask Dr. Heather!!!)

PostPartum Depression:  Postpartum Support International has a toll free hotline.  Keep on prenatals or female multi-vitamins.  Adrenal support.  Omega 3/Fish oils.  Methylated B vitamins.  Check your thyroid, talk to Dr. Heather about hormones.

 

Support for Baby
 

Teething/Fever:  Homeopathic Baby Kit by Uriel and Calcium Lactate tablets (break them up for the baby to swallow) from Standard Process.  1 to 3 tablets, up to 2x/day

Colic: Read BabySense Secret by Meg Faure.  Craniosacral Therapy.  Block Feeding (3 hours on one breast, then 3 hours feeding on the other).  Infant massage.  Have mom take probiotics and Omega 3s.

Reflux: Dietary changes for mom if baby is breastfeeding.  Craniosacral.  See Colic.


Diaper Rash:  Weleda Calendula Diaper Cream.  If yeast rash (you will know if it is yeast because it is “fire engine red” and does not respond to regular diaper creams) then you go to the pharmacy and buy athlete’s foot cream.  Apply to rash 2x/day until it clears.

Dr. Heather recommends not vaccinating on the day of birth with Hepatitis B as this is a blood-born illness and transmitted like HIV.  It can wait till your child’s immune system becomes more robust.

 

Recommendations throughout pregnancy and postpartum

Blood Sugar Support/General Nourishment Smoothie a day with SP Complete by Standard Process or Clearvite by Apex Entergetics.  These help stabilize blood sugar, are a mild liver detoxer, have great vitamins and more.

Increase Fiber Intake Whole Food Fiber by Standard Process, 1-2 TBS a day in a smoothie. (to clear out extra hormones and toxins through the digestive tract, and to increase stool transit time).  Eat more foods with fiber.

Cod Liver Oil or other Omega 3s.  Helpful for the developing nerves/brain of the baby, good immune support, brain support, and anti-inflammatory.  Fish oils do thin your blood so refrain from taking any from two weeks before your due date to birth.  Dosage on bottle.


Vitamin D.  Vitamin D is necessary for the immune system, hormonal health, mood stability and more. Get a liquid one as it is better absorbed.  Take 1000-4000 IU a day.  I recommend getting your Vitamin D level tested before supplementation so we can best dose you.  We can easily order a blood test to see what your levels are of Vitamin D are.

Probiotics: Eat them (yogurt, keifer, saurkraut, kombucha, etc) and/or take them in supplemental form.  If you are eating them, a therapeutic dose is about 2 Cups of yogurt/kefir a day.  If you have a yeast infection, you can use probiotics vaginally as a suppository for a few weeks and up to the birth (but obviously not after your water breaks!).  Get the vaginal canal ready for baby inoculation!  We have a few to choose from.  Strengthia by Apex Entergetics includes a yeast strain so is helpful for people suffering or who have suffered with yeast infections/overgrowth.

Consider B Vitamins—for hormone support, nausea in pregnancy, energy levels, mood, etc.   Many people cannot absorb regular B vitamins, so a methylated form is recommended.  We have a handful of different choices at our office.  Favorites are B Supreme or Homocysteine Supreme by Designs for Health.


READING LIST

The Baby Sense Secret by Meg Faure.  A must read for all new parents! My all time favorite baby book.  It explains a baby’s sensory development and how to take care of a baby knowing where they are developmentally.  

Anything by Ina May Gaskin and Dr. Sears

Functional Medicine: The Nuts and Bolts of Working with Dr. Heather

Functional Medicine at Jacobson Chiropractic

The Nuts and Bolts of working with Dr. Heather Hunt DC

 

As a chiropractor it did not take me long to realize that I could help my patients tremendously with chiropractic and craniosacral/myofascial therapy, but that what I offered was still incomplete if I truly wanted to address whole body health.  I needed to find a way to treat more internal and systemic problems. I needed to analyze and treat hormones, digestive dysfunction, adrenal fatigue, thyroid imbalances, and chronic stress, etc. if I wanted to guide my patients towards vibrant health.  That is when I began offering Functional Medicine, nutritional counseling and group detox/purification cleanses. “Functional Medicine” is a form of medicine that gathers more data and then analyzes the information using a systems-based approach.  For example, if a patient has chronic high blood sugar, we ask what else could be involved and examine the other systems of the body that are related to blood sugar (adrenal glands, liver, possible autoimmunity, thyroid, etc).  With this focus on the whole person and one’s unique physiology, we can piece together the puzzle of what may be causing a person to feel unwell, ideally before disease manifests. We use comprehensive intake paperwork and extensive patient history to identify necessary lab work, which may entail blood-tests, hormone (saliva), digestive (stool) and other tests to gather objective evidence.  Then we narrow conventional laboratory reference ranges and look for patterns, as many people will feel unwell before any single lab result is outside of traditional normal ranges.  We then create a personalized plan for every patient, depending on our findings. This includes a wellness protocol of diet and lifestyle recommendations and may include quality nutritional supplements.  Supplements can often aid with reversing the trends that are leading people towards illness.  For instance, the supplements potentially have the ability to help in re-sensitizing insulin receptor sites, nourishing the adrenal glands, feeding the thyroid, increasing immune function and more.  Because there is often loss of proper function (fatigue, depression, sleep problems, weight gain, etc) before there is disease, I consider this method of analysis true “preventative medicine.” I am excited to offer my patients more security in their current and long-term health.

Before you meet with Dr. Heather:  Give yourself 15 mintutes to fill out the intake paperwork.  We can email it to you or you can come early to your appointment to complete it.  Gather all pertinent lab tests and a list of all supplements/vitamins and medications being taken.

Your First Appointment:  

·       Please bring intake paperwork, any previous test results and a list of your medications and current supplements to your first appointment.

·       Dr. Heather will take a personal history of your health, address any specific health concerns you have and perform exams that are indicated.

·       Likely, Dr. Heather will order you a Comprehensive Biological Screen Blood Panel either through our cash lab or though your insurance (if you do not have current blood work).  You can do this over the phone with our receptionist or at the office in person.  We will give you a requistion that you will bring to the lab.  The results will take about 4-5 business days for our office to receive.

·       Dr. Heather will decide if any other tests are needed: gut, hormone, adrenal, etc.

Your Second Appointment:

·       Dr. Heather will review the findings of your lab testing and will present a personalized Wellness Report and Protocol tailored from all the pieces of information collected. This Wellness Protocol will explain in detail each system found not to be functioning optimally (liver, adrenals, thyroid, etc).  We will also include lifestyle and dietary advice to empower the patient to make changes independently.  Finally, we will recommend high quality nurtitional supplements for your unique situation.

·       Dr. Heather will then create a comprehensive treatment plan for you to ensure good follow-up and to ensure the issues you came in for get resolved to the best of our abillity. This plan will likely include monthly nutritional follow-up consults and treatments in chiropractic/craniosacral therapy/visceral manipulation.

Likely I will suggest doing a series of body work sessions with me as chiropractic, visceral manipulation (gut massage), craniosacral and mayofascial release are so good for the body’s systems in general.  We look forward to joining you in your journey of manifesting vibrant health and vitality—truly becoming the person you want to be!

Testing Available: 

Blood work: Comprehensive Bio-Screen from Principal Labs (or through your insurance).  This test includes a Complete Blood Count with differential, Complete Metabolic Panel, 9 thyroid markers, a complete iron panel, B-vitamin assessment, inflammation markers, C-reactive protein, homocysteine, vitamin D, magnesium, arterial health marker fibrinogen, and more!  It is $2,600 when billed to your insurance or discounted to $200 though Principal Labs.  The Wellness Report is an additional $50 for cash payers and $75 for insurance payers.

Digestive Health Testing:  Genova Diagnostics GI Effects 2200 is a comprehensive stool test that reports on good bacteria, bad bacteria, parasites, fat absorption, pancreatic enzyme health, candida/yeast infection, H.pylori, C.difficil, inflammation and more.  If there is yeast, they will culture it and uncover what pharmecueticals and natural agents it is resistent to, and what will kill it.  If you have adequate insurance, the cost negotiated by insurance companies is $134.  The cash price is more than $500. 

Hormone Testing: Genova Diagnostics and Diagnostechs both have hormone panels ranging from $112-$270.  Female Hormones, Peri-Menopause, Post-Menopause, Male hormones, and more are available.  We can also test hormones at our cash blood laboratory for 75% off other local lab prices.

Adrenal Health Testing:  Diagnostechs’ Adrenal Stress Index test is a 4 sample saliva test taken throughout the course of one day.  This way we can see your specific cortisol output curve.  It also includes DHEA (a hormone that works to mediate cortisol’s effects), 17-OH progesterone (the ingredient needed to make cortisol), insulin, salivary IgA (the immune system of your saliva) and gliadin antibodies (a quick and dirty screen to see if you are sensitive to gluten).  Cost is $120.

Immunological Testing:  ImmunoSciences Labs has comprehensive screening tests for hidden viral infections.  

Food Sensitivity Testing and Autoimmunity Testing:  Cyrex is the only lab that I use for food allergy testing. They are the leaders in immunology today, look them up online. Their tests are expensive and patients may choose a longer process of food elimination or cleansing to identify sensitivities.   They have a comprehensive gluten senstivity test, Array #3 which includes 24 markers for gluten (Cost: $325).  Array #4 tests 24 foods that cross-react like gluten in your system for $225.  Array 10 tests for 80 foods (cooked, uncooked, etc) $580.  Additionally, Cyrex Array #5 (cost $575) tests for 24 tissue antibodies so that you can see what tissues in your body you have an immunological problem with.  Armed with this information, we work together to reduce inflammation and the autoimmune response.

Genetic/Methylation Testing: “23 and Me” or Doctor’s Data both have ways to test if you have any genetic issues with methylation.

SpectraCell- Micronutrient testing $190

Notes: Most of these tests can be submitted to your insurance for reimbursment, but you have to pay up-front to the lab directly.  We do not mark up any test.

 

Feeling stressed, foggy, fatigued and wondering why? Learn about your adrenal glands!

Our bodies seek balance.  This balance is referred to medically as homeostasis.  We constantly respond to external and internal input and ideally our bodies process these stimuli, responding appropriately to maintain homeostasis.  However, when there is too much input for too long, or when there is a complicating factor such as an illness or environmental disturbance, our bodies can lose balance.  We can respond in an unpredictable or dysregulated way initially, then eventually become overloaded.  Over time, chronic stress can lead to breakdown of our body’s tissues and vitality. 

Our bodies respond to stress via our adrenal glands.  These small endocrine glands sit on our kidneys and secrete hormones.  These hormones include cortisol (produced in response to stress, it also has a role in regulating blood sugar, fat/protein/carbohydrate metabolism, fetal development including lung and brain, immune function, inflammation, and bone formation), sex hormones, aldosterone (helps kidneys balance sodium/potassium and water retention in blood, helps in regulation of blood pressure) epinephrine (adrenaline) and norephinepherine which regulate the flight or flight response of our sympathetic nervous system (the mechanism that kicks in when we need to run away from a bear or generally survive in our hectic world). 

There are many types of stress, good and badLife transitions, no matter how positive, can cause stress.  Weddings, moving, having a baby, school, work, family, etc. are included.  Difficult situations obviously cause stress too: illness, death, injury, accidents, trauma, disrupted sleep, etc. are included.  Psychological/Physical/Emotional causes of stress include: anger/fear, depression, guilt, worry, mental stress, perfectionist/Type A personality, severe allergies, hypoglycemia/skipping meals, poor digestion, food sensitivities/allergies, inflammation, chronic pain, nutritional deficiencies, musculoskeletal pain, sprains and strains, disease and pain, etc.  Environmental causes of stress include poor air quality, environmental toxins, poor diet, excessive caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and sugar consumption, a no or low-fat diet, the fast pace of modern life, etc.

From this list we can see that we are probably all taxing our adrenal glands in a negative way.  We reach “adrenal fatigue” after such chronic stress that our adrenals simply burnout.  There is a continuum within adrenal dysfunction though, from a dysregulated adrenal output of hormones (alternating lows and highs) to a constant high level output and finally to a true burnout situation where the adrenals simply cannot produce the hormones needed and there are chronic low levels of hormones produced.  My goal is to find where you are on this continuum and to support your adrenal glands so that they heal and can adequately respond to the inevitable stresses in your life as they arise.  My aim is to help you restore balance in your own life.

Signs and symptoms of adrenal fatigue/mal-adaptation:

Fuzzy thinking/mental fogginess, fatigue/lethargy, low libido/sex drive, blood sugar imbalances, insomnia, agitation, anxiety, depression, irrational thoughts/fears, poor digestion, sex hormone imbalances, PMS, slow to wake up, hard to get to sleep, wake up at 3am, blood pressure imbalances, light-headedness, dizziness, thyroid hormone imbalances, sweet/salt cravings, caffeine cravings, lowered immune response, memory problems, longer wound healing times, inability to tolerate stress, arthritic pain, increased inflammation and trouble concentrating.

How do we begin to heal the adrenal glands?

Lifestyle Changes:

Sleep, exercise, eat well and often (3 meals a day plus 2 snacks, protein rich), avoid caffeine, sugar and processed foods.  Partake in stress reducing activities: mediation, long walks, yoga, prayer, deep breathing, journaling, connecting with friends, etc.

Supplemental Support:

For those of us who look at the above list and either know we cannot attain this state, or know that we need additional support, there are some particular nutritional supplements and herbs that are useful in supporting the adrenals to help them regenerate.  The body is amazing at regeneration if only given a chance! 

As your chiropractor, I will assess your particular health and environmental situations and I will design a protocol for you using products from Standard Process, Biotics Research Cooperation, Dr. Ron’s or Medi-Herb.  These are affordable and I have found them to be invaluable in my search for adrenal health!

Functional Testing of the Adrenal Glands:
Evaluating exactly where your adrenal glands are is also very useful.  I order a saliva test from DiagnosTechs Labs called the Adrenal Stress Index Panel.  I like this test for multiple reasons.  First, there are 4 samples of saliva throughout a 24 hour period to assess what your cortisol is doing compared to a normal diurnal rhythm.  Second, DHEA (another steroid hormone) is tested as it is an important indicator for how your adrenals may have maladapted.  Third, fasting and non-fasting insulin is measured to see how your blood sugar is involved.  Fourth, gliadin antibodies are measured to check if you have a hidden gluten intolerance (highly linked to adrenal problems).  Finally, Secretory IgA is assessed to see how your stress is affecting your gut and digestion.  We do not mark up this test; our cost (and yours) is $120.


The Role of Chiropractic and Craniosacral Therapy:

Chiropractic and craniosacral therapies are invaluable when attempting to regulate the body’s stress response and heal the adrenal glands.  They both help to free restrictions in the musculoskeletal system, which can put additional stress on the body.  Likewise, they are fantastic at resetting the nervous system into the rest and digest (parasympathetic nervous system) state.  That is why so many patients report stomach gurgles, deep sighs/breaths, and increased relaxation during a treatment, good bowel movements and sleep after a treatment, and an increased feeling of peacefulness and balance along with a decrease in their musculoskeletal pain.


Please ask me if you have any additional questions.

Notes: The signs and symptoms of adrenal fatigue are often seen in other more severe medical conditions, so it is important to rule out these conditions with a medical doctor.