Tuesday, December 20, 2011

All You Need to Know About Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin that can be synthesized in the skin with the aid of ultraviolet light. It is involved in the regulation of calcium and phosphorus metabolism and it is necessary for growth and is especially important for normal growth and development of bones and teeth in children. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for adults is 200IU and for children is 400IU. It is estimated that the RDA can be achieved with the exposure of 30% of a person’s skin surface for 30 minutes at moderate latitudes. Food sources include fish liver oils, dairy products fortified with vitamin D, eggs, halibut, oatmeal, sardines, sweet potatoes, tuna, butter and alfalfa. Vitamin D is necessary to prevent Rickets in children and osteoporosis and bone fractures in older adults. Recently, there has been excellent evidence showing that Vitamin D has anti-cancer and immune boosting properties. Doses of 1000-3000IU daily might be required to achieve these effects. It is important however to monitor your blood levels of Vitamin D (specifically 1, 25 DHCC) to prevent toxicity when taking higher doses.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Healing Dry Skin

Dry, itchy skin is not only uncomfortable but it can be quite painful as well. There are many factors that we cannot control such as genetics and cold weather but there is still a lot that can be done to prevent it.

The first recommendation is eating nutritious, vitamin and mineral rich foods. Getting adequate Vitamin E and Vitamin A/beta-carotene is essential for healthy skin. Essential fatty acids (EFA’s) are also very important when it comes to nourishing the skin. The best source of EFA’s is fish, however nuts and seeds also provide adequate amounts. Taking a good quality fish oil supplement can also be helpful.

Avoiding excessive hand washing is important, especially washing with harsh soaps. Natural soaps containing Vitamin E, coconut oil, calendula, olive oil and evening primrose oil are great.

The most important recommendation and the one that is most forgotten is to stay hydrated. Drinking lots of water throughout the day (especially first thing in the morning) is key to keeping the skin healthy!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Cosmetic acupuncture

Cosmetic acupuncture is a great anti-aging procedure that is effective at reducing the signs of aging without any adverse side effects. It helps to decrease fine lines especially on the forehead, furrows, around the mouths and eyes, it improves skin tone and evens out the complexion. I have been doing cosmetic acupuncture in my practice now for 6 years and have treated many patients who were extremely happy with the outcome.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Ragweed season is approaching

For those people out there who suffer from ragweed allergy, the peak season is almost here. Most allergy suffers notice symptoms starting around the middle to end of August. Since ragweed is almost everywhere, it is difficult to avoid it. So the best way to get relief is to support the immune system and I have found that treating patients before the start of ragweed season allows for the best outcome. Whether it be determining which foods are triggering an immune reaction or using herbal or nutritional supplements with anti-inflammatory or anti-histamine effects, Naturopathic Medicine can be extremely beneficial for allergy sufferers.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Is A Multivitamin Necessary for Everyone?

Patients often ask me if it is necessary to take a multivitamin. The simple answer is no. Of course, it depends on each individual's diet, lifestyle and nutrient requirement when determining if a general multivitamin-mineral supplement is required. If you eat a well balanced diet of 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, take in sufficient protein, drink a lot of water, avoid refined carbohydrates and eat only complex carbohydrates as well as exercise regularly and get adequate sleep, then a multivitamin is not necessary. It's always better to get your nutrients from healthy, nourishing foods whenever possible!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Success Story: Fertility Case

A woman in her 30’s came to see me for fertility problems; she had been trying to conceive for 4 years prior to coming to see me. She had previously tried in vitro fertilization with no success. After 2 months of treatment at our clinic, she got pregnant and she recently gave birth to a healthy baby boy. Initially we did a thorough health history intake to determine possible reasons why this couple was having difficulties conceiving and then together we came up with a treatment plan that was suitable for them. Treatment involved simple diet changes, high quality herbal and nutritional supplements and weekly acupuncture sessions.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Answers to some of your Detoxification Questions

What are the Benefits of detoxing?
Detoxing helps the four detoxification organs in eliminating toxins – the liver, colon, kidneys and skin. Toxins build up in our bodies through eating the wrong foods, our environment and living an unhealthy lifestyle. Sometimes our bodies need assistance in getting rid of these toxins and this is the purpose of a detox.

When is it a good time to do a detox?
Detoxes can be done at anytime during the year if you want to address a certain condition. However, if you are looking to do a general cleanse, then the optimal times are spring and fall.

What are the side effects?
Everyone responds differently to detoxing. Some people who are more sensitive and/or have a lot of toxicity may experience headaches, low energy and moodiness but these symptoms usually clear up within the first week or two.

What detox is right for me?
There are many different detoxes available. General liver/colon cleanses, digestive cleanses, Candida diets and heavy metal detoxes are some examples of detoxes that are available.

What’s involved in a detox?
A detox usually involves necessary dietary modifications along with 1 or 2 nutritional and/or herbal supplements. They usually last about 3-6 weeks.

Keep Those Bones Strong

Did you know that the highest rates of osteoporosis are in developed countries and that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 8 mean over the age of 50 are diagnosed with osteoporosis? Did you also know that it is possible to reverse osteoporosis and even though aging and menopause are risk factors, diet and lifestyle play a huge role in optimal bone health. It is never too early (or too late) to start taking calcium, both from food sources and supplements. When choosing a calcium supplement it is important to choose one of good quality as these contain the highest amount of elemental calcium (the calcium that your body absorbs). Make sure your calcium supplement also contains Vitamin D as calcium will not be absorbed without it. Keeping active is extremely valuable in keeping your bones strong as well.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Success Story - Hypothyroidism

A 27-year-old woman came to see me for symptoms of hypothyroidism. She suffered from low energy, weight gain, constipation and dry skin. As well, her lab values showed high TSH and low T4 and free T3, which confirmed the diagnosis of hypothyroidism. When she initially came to see me her family doctor recommended that she start taking Synthroid, but she decided that she wanted to try a natural approach first.

When she came in for the initial visit, she was already a very healthy eater and had started some supplements that were recommended to her from the health food store. She was off to a great start but there was still a lot that needed to be done. I began by taking her off some of the supplements. Even though they were helpful, I wanted to focus on the essential nutrients that she needed at that time and I didn’t want her to be taking endless amounts of pills. I also had her do a liver detox that was tailored for her situation specifically. She was a great patient; she followed all my recommendations perfectly.

After treating her for 6 months, it was remarkable, her blood tests became normal and all her symptoms cleared. Then 3 months later she came to my office telling me that she was pregnant!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Some New Research in Alternative Medicine

-Mediterranean Diet May Reduce the Risk of Breast Cancer in Postmenopausal Women
-Acupuncture Reduces Pain and Need for Medication After Coronary Bypass Surgery
-Potential Protective Effect of Turmeric Intake Against Cancer
Treatment with Omega-3 Fatty Acids Benefits Patients with Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
-Eating Almonds May Benefit Subjects With Type 2 Diabetes and Mild Hyperlipidemia
-High Plasma Total Homocysteine and Low Plasma Vitamin B12 May Increase the Risk of Osteoporosis in Postmenopausal Women
-Maternal DHA Supplementation During Lactation May Improve Sustained Attention in Breast-Fed Infants
-Substituting Brown Rice for White Rice May Reduce Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Monday, March 7, 2011

Spring Cleanse

It has been great starting work again at Sage Clinic after all these years. As the winter season comes to an end, now is the perfect time to think about setting some new health goals. Doing a spring cleanse is a perfect way to getting a kick start. There are many different cleanses out there and as a Naturopath, I feel that it is important to come up with one that is suitable for each individual’s needs. For more information, please call 604-697-0397 to set up an appointment with Marni.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Back To Work!

I am happy to announce that I will be returning to work in early March. I am joining a fabulous clinic in Downtown Vancouver. Sage Clinic is located in the Yaletown district at 487 Davie Street (Davie and Richards). Please contact (604) 697-0397 to schedule an appointment.