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Spring Cleaning

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Daffodils and crocus flowers mean more than just the addition of color to our landscape.  They’re here to alert us that spring has arrived!  Despite the cool breezes and chilly weather, our days have lengthened enough to give the plant life of our region the signal that all systems are GO!

Shed the heaviness of winter time by taking advantage of this early burst of nature’s energy with spring cleaning.  Eliminating the excess from our lives and cleaning out the nooks and crannies of the external, and internal environment is a great way to brighten up your life.

Initially, through house cleaning we may discover long lost treasures that are actually useful and prevent us from needing to purchase new items.  Perhaps they may even inspire some creativity, rearranging items to make something new again.  Secondly, donations to the local Goodwill can help keep things out of landfills and allow others to purchase perfectly functional items at a reduced cost.  And always, eliminating the excess from our homes can provide a refreshing feeling of accomplishment and renewal.

Now, it’s time to look inside our bodies and consider what may be accumulating there.  Arsenic, bisphenol A, perchlorate, flouride, lead, flame retardants, mercury, phthalates, and many other dirty words can adequately describe what we carry around with us in our daily travels.  These substances are all found to cause severe health effects; reproductive disorders, thyroid disorders, mental health imbalances, immune dysfunction, cancers and many other problems.  Unfortunately, most of these substances bio-accumulate, pass on to our children and are not easily eliminated by the body.  Additionally, their presence is vast, extending far into regions where the benefits of the industrialized world have not yet reached.  Please visit the Environmental Working Group (http://www.ewg.org/) for more information on toxicity in our world, homes and bodies and to learn about simple changes you can make to improve the health of future generations.

So what are we to do, living amongst the worlds richest in both resources and toxic plastic junk?  Perhaps looking to our ancestors can assist us in our present quandry.  For many northern latitude people, springtime was a lean time of year.  The food stock of the previous year has come to an end and the earth is not yet providing much nourishment.  Thus, an ideal time to fast or go without as the body engages in its own deep cleaning.  Springtime has been a time to fast for various religious purposes as well.  Refraining from consumption can connect us to the past, to acknowledge the sacrifices of those that came before us as well as provide a new appreciation for our abundance.

This spring, allow yourself time to clean house and consider utilizing cleansing methods for your internal health as well.  Cleanse programs are widely variable but in general, should work to increase your elimination and reduce your consumption.  Any product based cleanse system may just be adding more substances for the body to have to deal with.  However, ceasing consumption altogether, as in a water-only fast may be too extreme for some individuals.  Finding the right balance to support yourself through the daily life that will likely continue, while increasing elimination is the goal for a beneficial spring-cleaning program.

For more information and guidance through an individually designed spring cleanse, I am here to help!  I have been guiding individual and group cleanse programs for many seasons and greatly enjoy this opportunity to help people discover how routine changes can make a big impact in their health.

Spring Cleanse Program
Feeling trapped in a routine that doesn’t support your optimal health? Join us for our Spring Cleanse Program to reset your habits and create a fresh start!  Our 10-day group cleanse begins Tuesday April 4th.
All programs include medical support with the practitioners at Stillwater clinic, use of the infrared sauna and group classes. Dates don’t work for you? Individual cleanse programs are available at anytime. Visit our website for more information www.stillwaterhealingarts.com!

Keeping our bodies strong and able to adapt to the changing tides of viral mutation is ultimately the best we can do to prevent colds and flus in the winter.  Additionally, restoring oneself in the cold, dark season will prepare us for a healthier spring and summer to come.

Simple steps include:
-Maintaining optimal nutrition with a whole foods diet and vitamin supplementation.  Avoid cold and raw foods in the wintertime to maintain the body’s internal warmth.  Ginger tea can be especially helpful to keep digestion strong.
-Get regular exercise.  The best detoxification is warming the body through exercise.
-Rest whenever your body requires it.  Sleep extra hours whenever you’re starting to feel run down.  Indulge in napping to aid restoration.
-Explore home remedies for immune support.  Citrus fruits are high in vitamin C.  Lemon water daily can aid detoxification.  Ending showers with cold water helps preserve and restore energy, etc…
-Work with a Naturopath and/or Chinese Medicine practitioner to support your organ systems to ensure optimal function.

Winter Immune Boost  Stew

Support yourself this winter with warm soups filled with immune boosting herbs and spices.

1 lb. cubed lamb meat
2 cups shitake mushrooms
2 cups barley or quinoa
1 cup chopped scallions
3 cloves chopped garlic
1-2 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
6 cups filtered water
Salt and pepper to taste.

Brown meat on a skillet.  Saute scallions and garlic.  Add all ingredients
together, boil, then simmer for 90 min.
Enjoy often!

I don’t remember how it started but several years ago my husband started a health kick and declared November as a sugar free month.  I love to support any ambition towards healthier routines and sugar is one substance we can all do without, or at least have a break from for a month at a time.

11 reasons to go sugar free (and I don’t mean changing to sugar replacements either!) –

  1. Break the addiction.  I once saw a bumper sticker that said, “Sugar, the Gateway Drug!”  I could not agree more.  It is our first experience with the dopamine surge that leaves us wondering how we felt that way and how can we get more.  Setting ourselves free from the habits that rule us is always a liberating experience.
  2. Lose weight.  Sugar consumption tends to increase compulsive eating and triggers a habitual response that result in people eating more and more.  Sugar is also incredibly calorie dense so we end up taking in far more energy than we’re able to use up.
  3. Stop the stinky gas!  Sugar feeds bacteria and yeast in the body that produce gases as they reproduce and grow in numbers in the gut.  What may be blamed on the dog can often be alleviated by cutting the sugar intake.
  4. Mood stabalization.  Not only does sugar affect our dopamine receptors, but it also triggers cortisol release in the body.  This results in an up and a down.  On top of that, blood sugar stability is very vulnerable to high concentrations of dietary sugars at once, particularly if they’re eaten on their own rather than with a big meal.  Sugar is then a triple whammy to the mood.
  5. Improve your energy.  The up and the down, the roller coaster ride of modern day life.  Depending upon stimulants to get through the day (sugar being a main culprit) results in a relative “over-ride” of your body’s natural energy system.  When a body has relied upon stimulants long term, it is likely that the adrenal system is no longer able to maintain a normal energy level without it.  Best way to prevent this is to keep stimulant us to a minimum, find routine, fun ways to reduce stress in your life and sleep when you’re tired rather than pushing through.
  6. Peace of mind.  Living free of habits, mood alteration, energy disruption and overgrown microflora results in a very pleasant peacefulness I highly recommend.
  7. Cancer prevention.  The first nutritional recommendation to cancer patients in integrative medicine is to cut out the sugar.  Sugar feeds cancer.  Cancer cells metabolize much faster than normal cells and require massive amounts of energy.  Sugar is their perfect medium.  Considering how long it often takes for a cancer to develop and be discovered, you can never begin prevention of cancer too early.  Start now, by not feeding it.
  8. Pain relief.  Sugar consumption increases the inflammatory response in the body.  The result of this in tissues that are already upset and painful is an increase in upsetness and pain.  In addition, many people have a sensitivity to sugar that will result in headaches, menstrual cramping or joint pain.
  9. Improve immune function.  In the same way that sugar feeds microbes in the digestive system, it is also going to feed the bacteria, virus and spirochetes that are involved in both acute and chronic infections.  In addition, sugar has a depressant effect on the white blood cell activity resulting in the body having a weaker immune response to illness.
  10. To set a good example.  It is clear that there are far more negatives than positives to sugar consumption.  Yet it is a huge part of most peoples daily lives.  So many of us have strong childhood associations to sugar.  Receiving sweets as a child was often the best reward.  By eliminating them from our diet, we can offer our children the opportunity to have a healthier start in life and hopefully not struggle with this one.
  11. To see what happens!  Give it a month.  You might even find you prefer it!

For a personalized nutritional assessment or if you’re challenged with blood sugar issues and experiencing severe cravings, I’m happy to help ease your struggle with natural medicine support.

~Dr. Hart

Detoxification is thought of as a tool for drug addicts and alcoholics.  The nausea, pain and discomfort of acute detox is incredibly intense and can be a medical emergency, yet the essence of detoxifying reaches far beyond this picture.  In fact, it’s happening in your belly right now.  You’re detoxifying substances from everything you have eaten, drank, absorbed and inhaled from the recent past.

To detoxify is simply the process that occurs in the liver constantly, when substances are broken down and built-up in order to be eliminated from the body.  It is an essential part of our health in every moment.

Toxins in Our World

Bis-phenol A, heroine, phthalates, sodium laurel sulfate, alcohol, benzene, high fructose corn syrup and more are all routinely consumed toxins in any random American’s experience.  Recently, in Mayflower, Arkansas a pipeline carrying tar sands oil ruptured and spilled into the waterways.  This unintentionally exposed the town’s population of 2,000 people to at least 7 known toxins.

Meanwhile, many people are consciously ingesting illegal substances into their bodies routinely.  Plus those ingesting legal intoxicants, smoke-breaks, happy hours, drive-thru’s and much more.  Toxic exposure is happening to all of us, everyday whether consciously, or unconsciously.  This can create problems for the body on every level.

A toxin may be a normal product of cellular metabolism, a intermediary step in a pathway of something non-toxic being processed in the body, or something overtly damaging to the body from start to finish.  Whatever the method of origin, a toxin in the body disrupts normal organ function and causes cellular damage.  Fortunately, our bodies are well equipped for this process, when we are in an optimal state of health and when our exposure is reasonable.

However, our modern world is filled with substances that require nearly constant work to address.  Many are difficult for the body to process and are known as bio-accumulative, staying with us our entire lives.  Driving down the road, drinking tap water, cleaning house, cooking a meal: all of these simple daily activities can overwhelm our system with toxic substances over time, depending on our choices.

Toxicity and Our Health

The outcome of toxic exposures in the body are many.  Cellular damage leads to poor organ function which can lead to poor metabolism, fatigue, body aches, mind-fog, obesity, hormonal disturbances, auto-immunity, cancer, and the myriad of unexplained symptomatic patterns.  Toxic accumulation can play a role in every type of disease.  Generally, the symptoms develop slowly, over time and may be considered normal aging at first.

Enhancing normal detoxification in the body is something that can be achieved through numerous simple, daily life activities.  Based on the personal experience and individual imbalance, a formulation of specific tools can make a world of difference.  In general, detoxification practices should involve taking fewer substances into the body and encouraging normal elimination through the bowels, breath, skin and urine.

Adapting a toxin free lifestyle is an important step.  This may be unreasonable for some, especially when addiction stands in the way.  In today’s world with our current stress-level, global challenges and chemical exposures, it is important to fit tools into your daily routine that support detoxification.

Traditional Detox Tools Include:

–       Dry Skin Brushing: from Ayurvedic medicine,  brushing the skin with a course bristle brush from the tips of the extremities toward the heart daily supports longevity.  Aiding lymphatic circulation, toxins are circulated in order to be better eliminated.

–       Castor Oil Packs: popularized by Edgar Cayce, this routine abdominal self-massage is a fantastic way to aid digestion and liver health.

–       Contrast Hydrotherapy: many of the early European Eclectic Physicians devoted their careers to exploring the benefits of hot & cold therapies on the skin surface.  As an everyday tonic, alternating the heat of the shower with a brief burst of cold invirgorates vitality.

–       Sauna Therapy: inducing a high-temperature fever like state in the body through sauna’s is a tradition from cultures around the globe.  Ideal use includes the contrasting cold of a shower, cold-plunge or roll in the snow to draw the vital heat back into the body.

–       Fasting: reducing and altering dietary intake is a common thread through many traditions of medicine.  In addition to the rest it allows the body for spiritual pursuit, it also gives the body a great opportunity to detoxify.

At Stillwater, we offer tools for supporting longevity through detoxification.  Whether you’re facing addiction or illness we are here for you.  Our infrared sauna is the most efficient and most gentle tool for aiding the bodies release.  Addiction expert and therapist James Hart counsels people on making change.  Our Natural Living Store carries all the tools you need and as a Naturopathic Doctor, I have worked in both in-patient and out-patient detox programs and supported people on the journey to optimal health for over 10 years.

For optimal health, join us seasonally for a thorough approach to dietary cleansing and detoxification with professional support.  3-day, 7-day or 3-week options available!  For more information visit www. http://stillwaterhealingarts.com/seasonal-cleanse/.  Programs are based upon your unique needs, body-burdens, vitality and schedule.  Schedule your pre-cleanse consult today!

It’s 2016, and unless you live in Oregon, Washington or Vermont, your insurance based healthcare is NOT going to keep you well.

As much as I cringe at the analogy of our bodies being like cars, people inevitably think of themselves that way all the time.  The squeeky wheel gets ignored until it’s a screaming or debilitating pain.

We pay for car insurance and know it’s going to be there when we crash (after paying our deductible).  But, we don’t expect car insurance to wash our windows, vacuum the interior, change the tires, the oil, the belts or even cover our annual tune-ups to see how things might be deteriorating within.

Health insurance is not much different in most states.  It will help out with emergency room visits, and sometimes cover basic screenings for life-threatening illnesses (PAPs, prostate exams and mammograms for cancer, bone density screenings for osteoporosis, etc…)  And it usually covers an annual exam to check for hypertension, monitor growth and BMI and provide medications that treat the symptoms.

Unfortunately, our current medical model misses out on how to keep people healthy.  While pharmaceutical medications are necessary in many circumstances, supporting health naturally so we don’t need them or improving health while we’re on them so we only need them short-term is ideal.  It’s no fault of modern Doctors, its the larger systems emphasis on drugs and surgery as the only medicinal tools.

Most of the current drug safety information is based on short-term controlled trials and the harm of utilizing medications is always acknowledged in their litany of side effects.  As research continues, we learn of previously unknown harmful effects from long-term or combined medication use. 

Fortunately, humans have been living a very long time and we have an immense history of health and vitality to learn from traditions around the world.  Chinese medicine, Ayurveda, Native American medicine, Rudolf Steiner and Anthroposophical medicine, Western herbalism and the European Eclectic physicians are among my favorites.

With Naturopathic medicine, we are able to address the foundation of imbalances and improve our health over time from a truly integrated perspective.   It’s the journey of a lifetime, not a one stop shop!  With ancient systems, we learn what our bodies need, where are weaknesses are and how to improve ourselves day by day.  With modern science we get detailed information on changes and stats of organ function.  Naturopathic medicine is the most comprehensive medical training in holistic medical assessment from both perspectives.  For details on educational curriculum, check this comparison out:  Nat-Med-Ed-Comp-Curricula

At Stillwater, we want to support the community in their long-term health.  Trained as holistic primary care provider, naturopathic doctors work to not only address the current symptoms and diagnosis (working in conjunction with your other physicians, medications and insurance system) but to be your guide and ally in your health journey toward optimal vitality. We believe in making the best use of tools from all systems of healthcare and healing.  It’s 2016, shouldn’t we have it all?

At Stillwater Clinic, we have created a Membership program to provide people with an affordable addition to their routine healthcare costs.  Plans range from $35. per month to $300. depending upon the intensity of need for change.  These rates are significantly reduced from the fee’s of other medical specialists in our effort to make healthcare affordable and accessible to all.

Whether you’re passionate about maintaining the health you’ve got, you recognize your health is lacking by a sense of something’s not right or you have a serious diagnosis contact us to find out which package is right for you.

 

Stillwater Healing Arts 2016 membership plans include:

BASIC CARE – $35./month or $420./year ($580. value)

  • Annual integrative medicine health evaluation & treatment plan
  • 3 acute care appointments 
  • 6 spa visits (foot spa & sauna)

This package is intended for individuals who have good health, who wish to keep it that way with annual evaluations of what’s going on under the surface and some tune-ups along the way. For pediatric patients, spa visits can be utilized by parents!

INTERMEDIATE CARE – $65./month or $780./year ($1060. value)

  • Seasonal integrative medicine health evaluation & treatment plan
  • 3 acute care appointments
  • 6 spa visits (foot spa & sauna)

This package is intended for individuals who have mild symptoms and want to support the annual rhythm of their health with 4 quarterly Naturopathic and Chinese medicine evaluations and treatment plans. Ideal for individuals with low-grade or controlled health issues such as; allergies, headaches, intermittent digestive challenges, PMS, controlled autoimmune disease, cancer relapse prevention, and others.

TREATMENT FOCUSED PLAN – $140./month or $1680./year ($2360. value)

  • Annual integrative medicine health evaluation & treatment plan
  • Twice monthly treatment sessions (Acupuncture, Bodywork or Hydrotherapy)
  • Monthly spa visits with the foot spa and private sauna use.

This package is suited for individuals who may be in optimal health but utilize their bodies intensively and want to keep things tip-top, such as; athletes, performers, dancers, yoga instructors, builders, farmers and those who know the personal value of routine care. It also serves patients who have chronic health challenges that know what they need. For example, ADD/ADHD treatment, emotional health with 5-element acupuncture or chronic pain. This is also the package recommended for macular degeneration treatment.

COMPREHENSIVE HEALTHCARE PLAN – $175./month = $2100./year ($3060. value)

  • Monthly comprehensive integrative medicine appointments
  • Monthly spa visits – foot spa and private sauna use
  • 6 Additional acute illness or injury appointments

This package is suited towards individuals with uncontrolled health challenges who are in need of comprehensive evaluation and treatment. This commitment will be necessary for successful treatment of conditions such as; menopausal transition, adrenal fatigue, infertility, digestive disorders, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, obesity, heart disease, diabetes. This package serves as the foundation for natural cancer treatment support, chronic infectious disease treatment and chronic degenerative conditions such as Parkinsons, MS, auto-immune disease and dementia. However, more support may be necessary depending upon diagnosis and evaluation.

INTENSIVE TRANSFORMATION – $300./month = $3600./year ($5520. value)

  • Monthly comprehensive integrative medicine visit
  • Weekly treatment sessions (Acupuncture, Bodywork or Hydrotherapy)
  • Twice monthly spa visits – foot spa and private sauna use

This package is designed to help individuals who are ready to make dramatic changes to their health. Ideal for those with undiagnosed medical conditions, at a place of significant life change, extreme symptomology, chronic pain or addiction. This program serves as the foundation of our holistic mental health & addiction program as well as our weight loss program.

All Programs Include:

  • 20% discount on additional appointments.
  • Email and phone support with our holistic Doctor.
  • Annual Membership – automatic payment required with 12 month contract.
  • We can customize any plan to meet your needs, budget, family and employee packages.
  • Member discounts for special events, classes and other programs as well.

Schedule today and we’ll get the right package created for you!

Questions?  Feedback?  Curiosity?  I’d love to hear from you!

herbal-medicine-in-jars-0Drippy noses, itching eyes, fatigue and shortness of breath are all a terrible combination of symptoms that tend to show up for millions of Americans in summer time.  While it seems like an awful way for the season to welcome someone, there are numerous ways to help improve the pattern over time.

Allergies are a result of inappropriate immune reactions to non-harmful particles.  The allergic person has somehow determined that cat dander, grass pollen or food substances are dangerous to the body and the resulting attack can be very annoying.  This is especially true for environmental allergies where we cannot stop the exposures from happening.

While it is generally determined that once a person has allergies, that is their tendency for life, some people “outgrow them” or grow into them.  Either way, you can support health naturally with a variety of remedies that both improve allergy symptoms but overall health too:

–       Quercetin – A natural anti-inflammatory and antihistamine, quercetin is a potent bioflavonoid that is found naturally in onions, black tea and apples.

–       Bromelain – This compound comes from pineapples and is a natural anti-inflammatory.  It enzymatic activity breaks up inflammation in the body and is useful for allergies and other inflammatory conditions.

–       N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) – This is one of natures most powerful mucolytic agents.  Used to break up congestion, NAC is created naturally by the body from proteins but can be taken as a nutritional supplement to eliminate congestion.  Especially helpful for chronic congestion of the sinuses or lungs.

–       Nettles – Urtica Dioica is one of North America’s most abundant natural remedies for allergies.  This herb stabilizes mast cells which calms the bodies tendency to react to pollens that enter the respiratory tract.  Taken as a daily tea, encapsulated or tinctured there are multiple constituents in this plant that benefit the immune system.

–       Eyebright – Euphrasia officinalis has an affinity for benefiting the eye when consumed as a tea, tincture or encapsulated herb.  This plant is astringent and can be used topically as a compress for itchy, swollen eyes.  It works equally as well as a homeopathic remedy for allergy symptoms affecting the eye.

–       Vitamin C – Popular for it’s immune stimulating effects, vitamin C acts as a natural anti-histamine, calming the allergic reaction.  This vitamin is water soluble so the body will easily eliminate any excess that may be taken.

–       Amla – This herb is used traditionally in Ayurvedic medicine as an agent to improve digestion.  However, it is one of the only compounds we know of that increases the gut immune function, known as secretory IgA.  To calm the related digestive reactions of allergies, Amla can be added on a routine basis to support the body.

–       Bee Pollen – Oral tolerance is the ability of the body to regulate an immune response to something that caused allergy symptoms.  Oral tolerance can be naturally stimulated to regional pollens by consuming the pollen from bees.  This can be a very effective method of neutralizing the bodies reactions, however it should be done with extreme caution to prevent the immune system from being overly-triggered.  It is helpful to know from skin or blood testing how the immune system is responding because a severe IgE reaction to a pollen may result in anaphylaxis if bee pollen is consumed.

Ways to help shift the immune system from the allergic tendency to create a long-term correction in immune function include:

–       Reducing Inflammation – In addition to avoiding food allergens, minimizing inflammatory provoking agents from the diet can help ease the body.  This includes vegetables of the nightshade family, pork and grain-fed meats, sugar, coffee and alcohol.  This also includes any irritants that the body has identified as harmful including other environmental and food allergens.

–       Detoxification – Enhancing the bodies elimination of irritating agents will help correct immune function.  Ensuring adequate bowel elimination, kidney function and augmenting elimination through the lungs and skin all support the body’s natural detoxification process.

–       Nervous System Regulation – The more we can exist in our parasympathetic, rest and digest aspect of our nervous system, the better the bodies opportunity to restore and heal imbalances.  Utilizing stress management techniques on a routine basis helps us not only feel more calm and peaceful, but also improves our immune system and whole self.

For more information on treating allergies with natural medicine, come to Stillwater clinic for personalized hydrotherapy sessions and holistic health consultations to get the right tools in place to support your unique self.

Cereal, potatoes, toast and pancakes are all favorite ways for Americans to start their day.  Dowse it with some syrup, sugar or fruit and then we’re out the door ready for the day’s action!  Wash it down with some juice or coffee and it’s nearly the perfect recipe for blood sugar mania.

The body requires continuous energy to perform all the necessary actions of life.  The blood sugar is the basis of this energy, feeding every cell the necessary fuel to replicate, eliminate, transform substances and much more.  Not only does blood sugar provide our physical energy, but it also provides our mental energy and the fuel to stabilize our moods.

Blood sugar may not be given much attention until the moment when it’s disruption creates a crisis.  Symptoms of low blood sugar are often more easily identified by those closest to us, like our friends, partner’s or parents!  Crabbiness, being short-tempered, inability to focus, anxiety and panic, light-headedness, shakiness and fatigue are all common symptoms of low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia.

High blood sugar goes unnoticed by most people until it is identified in the blood with routine lab testing.  When the blood sugar is high, there are not typically immediate symptoms but it can contribute to fatigue, increased thirst, blurry vision and a sense of feeling “off.” Over long periods, high blood sugar or hyperglycemia results in damage to the delicate capillary beds in the body.  This especially affects the hands, feet, brain, eyes, nerves and heart.  Diabetes Mellitus (type I or II) is a disease of poor blood sugar regulation, either innate or acquired.

Blood sugar levels normally have a degree of variation throughout the day.  This is based on a complex relationship between the liver, pancreas and endocrine or hormonal system.  Each day, we have a cycle of energy produced by our adrenal glands, known as our circadian rhythm that directly influences our blood sugar.  Ideally, when we wake in the morning (preferably on our own without an alarm) we have the highest energy of the day, a strong appetite and mental clarity.  As we approach mid-day, the energy level lowers gradually and we experience mid-day hunger for our lunch.  Then we descend gradually into the evening with our energy dipping to it’s lowest around 10pm.

Variation in this rhythm explain why some people are morning people and others are night owls.  The circadian rhythm can be disrupted by a variety of factors including night shift work, chronic stress, inadequate nutrition, trauma and illness.  When disrupted, the circadian rhythm can significantly impact the energy we perceive as our ability to get through the day.  Beyond this, it also affects the immune system, digestion and our hormonal balance.

The liver is the organ in charge of providing a continuous supply of sugar or glucose to the blood.  When we eat a meal, the liver is going to be triggered to put the glucose into storage once the food is broken down.  In between meals, the liver is going to be triggered to remove glucose from storage and release it into the blood.  Along with the liver, the pancreas works in partnership to transport glucose into each cell of the body, ensuring that the sugar reaches the areas that need it in an effort to not overwhelm any part of the body with too much.

The body is amazingly resilient to balance blood sugar and adapt to extreme variations in diet and lifestyle.  The fact is that a person can start their day with coffee and doughnuts and not be apparently harmed, right away.  While nobody is going to be better off eating doughnuts for breakfast, there are times in our lives when it can cause more harm than others.

  • Childhood:  The immature organ systems are vulnerable to variations in blood sugar.  Because developing bodies have a high demand of energy, the necessity to provide a healthy, balanced source of fuel is great.  In kids, blood sugar fluctuation is most easily identified by their tantrums, tearfulness, hyperactivity or episodes of being “difficult”.
  • Times of High Stress:  When we endure a high degree of physical or psychological stress, the resiliency of the blood sugar regulation is more vulnerable.  When we exist in a fight or flight state, the body is forcing more energy into the system to endure the stress.  If we choose not to eat well, we are more likely to suffer long-term health consequences.
  • Illness:  When dealing with an illness, the body is utilizing all the resources it can to get well.  If the blood sugar is unstable, it can weaken the immune system resulting in a longer duration of illness.  This is especially true of chronic disease.
  • Hormonal Fluctuations:  As we shift from one era of life to the next, the hormonal changes significantly tax the liver.  When the liver becomes over-burdened blood sugar can be more difficult for it to control.

Feeding ourselves well requires more than just making healthy choices for our ingredients.  It also requires portion control.  The basic guideline for blood sugar management encourages a strict limitation on processed foods.  Simple carbohydrates increase blood sugar such as many of our typical breakfast foods, any sweeteners, fruit, processed grains such as breads, pastas and cereals.

For optimal blood sugar support, focus on the ratio of each meal incorporating approximately 30% protein, 30% vegetables and 30% complex carbohydrates with each meal.  The remaining 10% can be the fruits, simple carbohydrates and oils.  This is a general guideline and some people will benefit from a very different format for blood sugar control.  For a personalized approach to your healthcare, contact Stillwater Healing Arts Clinic. Image