Last weekend there was a great turnout at a Saturday Seminar we offered on “Healthier Healing”. I had a friend of mine, Sid DeLair, talk at the end of this seminar about how his life has drastically changed over the past 8 year years, largely due to the changes he made with his diet and by adding supplements. He went from being overweight and on 20 medications to dropping 50 pounds, getting off all medocations and now running in ultra-marathons. Sid is an inspiration to many and it goes to show you how hard work and determination can change your life.
Here are a few of the key points that we talked about at the lecture and maybe one or two of these will help you on the road to recovery. Many of these tips come from Dr. Heather Tick’s book “Holistic Pain Relief” which I have talked about in previous blogs and should be read by every person dealing with chronic pain.
Balanced vitamins and minerals are important for everyone but they are most important for those on the road to recovery. For this reason, a balanced multivitamin and mineral supplement is a good insurance policy – it ensures we get at least some essential nutrients every day. Multivitamins are a mixture of Vitamin A, B, C, D, E, K all the essential minerals and usually some other antioxidants. Multivitamins are becoming more and more accepted by conventional medicine. Even the Journal of the American Medical Association has printed articles endorsing the use of multivitamin products.
B Vitamins are often found together in the same foods and are best taken this way as B-Complex vitamins. B Vitamins support the health of our immune system, nervous system, red blood cells, skin and muscles. They are needed for energy production and detoxification. B-complex vitamins with magnesium can be helpful for treating leg cramps and restless leg syndrome and can help us deal with stress of all kinds. Vitamin B2 is helpful for migraines. B12 helps create red blood cells and maintain bone density. It also plays an important role in the health of our brain and nerves and a recent study showed it plays a specific role in pain.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. It is needed to build and repair collagen, which makes our connective tissues, such as tendons, ligaments and fascia. It is also needed to build and repair muscles and bones. Our vitamin C needs vary from day to day depending on stress, injury and sickness. Only 10-20% of adults get the recommended 9 servings of fruits and veggies a day, so unless you are eating a lot of fruits and veggies, it’s best to take this supplement.
One vitamin that all Midwesterners are deficient in this winter is Vitamin D. Vitamin D is the “sunshine vitamin” and is not found in fruits or vegetables. It is important for the function of over 200 hundred genes in the body. It boosts the immune system and helps it fight infections like the flu. It plays a role in blood sugar metabolism and preventing diabetes. It helps our bones absorb calcium and improves muscle strength. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with pain. Many chronic pain patients I have are tested by their doctors for this and found to be deficient so they are put on high doses and it truly helps with pain reduction. When we do finally get to spring, get out in the sun 2-3x/week for about 1/4th the amount of time it would take to develop a slight sunburn.
Minerals come from the earth. Our bodies must ingest them and cannot make them. Fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts are good sources of minerals. Calcium is probably the most commonly recommended mineral. It is needed for muscles to contract, blood to clot and some neurotransmitters to function. Too much calcium can be harmful, especially in men. Excess calcium has been associated with increased rates of heart disease. Normally, adults need 1,000 mg from all sources – food and supplements. Smoking, excess alcohol, caffeine and salt consumption; and hormonal imbalances all interfere with calcium levels.
Magnesium is needed by the body to make energy and is involved in over 300 essential metabolic reactions. It keeps bones strong, helps regulate blood sugar and controls the rate of nerve firing. It causes muscles to relax and so is helpful for cramps, spasms and tight painful muscles. It also reduces blood pressure, used for treating fibromyalgia, lyme’s disease, multiple sclerosis and migraines. It can help irritable bowel syndrome by relaxing the gut muscles, reducing cramps and relieving constipation. It can improve sleep and reduce pain. Because 99% of the magnesium found in your body is in the tissues not the blood, it makes it difficult to detect a deficiency, although it is one of the most common deficiencies in Western society.
There are many items on the market to help with pain. One of the most commonly recommended one is glucosamine. It is a widely recommended supplement for joint health. The studies are inconsistent but some well-done studies suggest if slows down the degeneration of cartilage in joints and reduces joint pain.
Pycnogenol is a name for a water extract of the bark of the French maritime pine which is grown in the southwest France. It contains oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs). It is helpful in supporting the immune system and there is evidence of assisting with asthma symptoms, muscle pain and cramps, painful menstruation, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. To date, no serious adverse effects have been reported in the available scientific literature. Take a look; Dr. Oz even has promoted the use of pycnogenols on his show – https://www.doctoroz.com/videos/pycnogenol-supplement-younger-looking-skin.
A product that has been helpful to my husband’s joint problems is Prime Joint Support Formula by nutraMetrix™. It is the only product on the market delivering glucosamine, Pycnogenol and hyaluronic acid in an isotonic form.
Isotonic, which means “same pressure”, bears the same chemical resemblance of the body’s blood, plasma and tears. All fluids in the body have a certain concentration, referred to as osmotic pressure. The body’s common osmotic pressure, which is isotonic, allows a consistent maintenance of body tissues. In order for a substance to be absorbed and used in the body’s metabolism, it must be in an isotonic state. This means that the body has less work to do to obtain maximum absorption of the nutrients. The isotonic state of the suspension allows nutrients to pass directly into the small intestine and rapidly absorb into the bloodstream.
With nutraMetrix™ Isotonix™ products, little nutritive value is lost, making the absorption of nutrients highly efficient while delivering maximum results. WARNING: Do not take Prime Joint if you have a shell fish allergy.
Disclosure: Naperville Physical Therapy is a distributor of nutraMetrix™ products and you can access our website page for more product information, Nutri-Physical health assessment tool and product ordering at www.nutrametrix.com/napervillephysicaltherapy
Research shows Omega-3 Fish Oils help a wide variety of painful conditions, including osteoarthritis, RA, PMS symptoms and inflammatory bowel disease. They also may reduce the risk of diabetes and some degenerative brain diseases, as well as reduce depression and ADHD. Choose a high quality fish oil and do not take high doses (stay under 3 grams a day) as high doses may keep your blood from clotting. Omega-3 oil can be found in flax which is very healthy. I put flax seeds in my smoothies, so if you choose to do this as well, a helpful hint from me is to make sure to grind them yourself first. Doing this will increase the overall effectiveness of the seed.
I continue to learn more and more about the benefits of proper nutrition and supplements and I want to share my knowledge with you. I will be sharing more tips on
April 16th from 7:00pm – 8:00pm
Wine and Wellness Wednesday
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