Posts Tagged ‘addiction’

Always Coca Cola

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Coca Cola, Pepsi , Mountain Dew, Sprite. You name it. I’m not a fan. Patients and loved ones often wonder why I’m so against drinking soda. One can of Coke has the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of sugar. 10. Almost 13 billion gallons of cola were consumed in the U.S. last year. That’s 130 billion teaspoons of sugar just from drinking colas. High sugar content is just one of the reasons I recommend avoiding soft drinks.

Toxic Ingredients

* Phosphorus- weakens bones and decays teeth. A major contributor to osteoporosis.

* Formaldehyde. Yes. An ingredient in plywood and fungicides. A known carcinogen.

* High fructose corn syrup- Increases body fat, cholesterol, diabetes risk,and triglycerides. Also stimulates appetite.

* Fake sugars. Known to be neurotoxic, carcinogenic, and damage optic nerve. More info.

* Food dyes and coloring- linked to hyperactivity, impairment of brain function, lack of impulse control, cancer.

* A diuretic. Makes you pee and dehydrates you. Leading to fatigue, headaches, constipation, irritability, rapid heart rate, and more.

I hope now you’re looking for healthier options. But still feel you need the sugar and caffeine boost?

For bubbles- kombucha or sparkling water with lemon or lime

Energy- chlorophyll rich foods- sea vegetables, spinach, kale,
parsley, cilantro, blue-green algae, sprouts, wheatgrass.

Sugar buzz- the best source. Nature’s finest. Fruit.

Another consequence of soda consumption is plastic consumption. It hurts your health and the environment. Listen to my interview with Beth Terry on how you can use less plastic.

Next time your thirsty or looking for more energy, have a water and a smile.

Live natural. Live well.

Heather

Are YOU Addicted?

 

 

Got you, didn’t I? Addiction is such a buzzword. Most people associate addiction with skid row types or the weak willed. The very opposite is true. All of my patients are addicted to something, but usually it’s to socially acceptable things. Coffee, soda, love, alcohol, shopping, approval, and dairy are at the top of the list. The hardest to give up? And the most prevalent? Sugar. Yep. Sugar. This epidemic of abuse of sugar in this country has gotten so bad that a 12 year old needed a liver transplant due to his intake of soda.

 

It is now a common occurrence to see children taking blood pressure medication and having what used to be called adult onset diabetes- type 2 diabetes. 5-year-olds weighing more than 100 pounds is normal. 100 pounds. Almost 13 percent of children ages 6 to 17 are obese. Something is very wrong. Teenage boys consume an average of 34 teaspoons of sugar a day. It’s recommended that adult males should eat no more than 9 teaspoons of added sugar per day.

 

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study conducted at Harvard proving that sugar consumption and foods that drastically raise blood levels triggers activity in the brain associated with addiction. Sugar and other stimulating addictions increase dopamine in the short term, leading to wanting more. Dopamine is released when you experience pleasure. Since 1970, American sugar consumption has gone up 17 percent. See the connection?

 

Unless you make all your own food from home, sugar is hidden in everything including tomato sauce/ketchup, salad dressing, soup, flavored chips, yoghurt, cereal, canned vegetables, breakfast bars, bread, fast food and chain restaurants, Do you think you’re choosing the healthier option at fast food places by ordering a salad? Think again. A McDonald’s Big Mac has 9 grams of sugar and the chicken salad raspberry vinaigrette has 13 grams. Jarred pasta sauce isn’t any better. A serving of Prego tomato sauce has more sugar than one serving of Oreos.

 

Tips for getting off the junk.

 

* Daily acupuncture is an effective way to ease the suffering of withdrawal.  It helps with cravings.  It also safely and effectively aids a patient in dealing with whatever emotions might come up.

 

* Avoid having sweet breakfasts, such as sweetened yoghurt and fruit, sugared cereal, and sugar-laden oatmeal.  Starting your day off with sugar sets up your entire day to wanting more.

 

* Eat healthy snacks to give you energy instead of reaching for an energy bar, coffee with sugar, or donuts.  Try hummus, veggie sticks, and nuts.

 

* Stop eating and drinking all sugars, sweeteners, and fruit juice. The slightest amount can retrigger your cravings.

 

* Enjoy plenty of omega 3 rich foods- walnuts, kale, hemp seeds, and seaweed snacks. They help with insulin control and healthy brain function.

 

* If you are having something sweet, add a little cinnamon to help regulate blood sugar levels.

 

Addiction. It can be an action or substance that is in any way negatively affecting your daily life, and you find it virtually impossible to stop.  How many times have you said to yourself, “No more,” only to reach for another piece of cake?  It’s time to take charge of your health and give up sugar.

 

Live natural.  Live well.

 

Heather

 

Addiction

It’s a well-known fact that many people have a problem with some form of addiction. Whether it’s cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, food, caffeine, love, or sex, addiction doesn’t necessarily mean you’re unable to function or live a relatively manageable life. It can be an action or substance that is in any way negatively affecting your daily life and you find it virtually impossible to stop.

For many, life’s ups and downs are extremely painful and being “numb” is the easiest way out. For those in the performing arts, emotional sensitivity makes them fantastic performers but also causes a great deal of pain. And as previously noted, along with the pain comes the overwhelming desire to numb it.

Daily acupuncture is an effective way to ease the suffering of withdrawal and help with cravings. It also safely and effectively aids in dealing with the emotions that come up once sober.

My treatment protocol is best used in conjunction with therapy, 12 step programs, and the support of loved ones. I make the process less painful – both physically and emotionally – greatly increasing the chance of success. Make this really be your last bottom.

Imagine how much more deeply you’ll be able to connect with your family and friends… Imagine the sense of triumph and true happiness you’ll feel once sober…

Chinese medicine is also ideal for those already in recovery. The natural calming effect and emotional support is completely safe — no transference of dependency and no negative side effects.

Patient testimonials:

“I’ve tried getting sober off and on for almost 20 years. Since working with Heather, I haven’t gotten loaded in almost 3 years. A miracle.” – Jack G., Singer

“My problem was with food. I ate any time I was upset. I was about 100 pounds overweight when I first came to Doctor Heather. With regular treatments, herbs, practical nutrition, and exercise, I’ve been able to keep the pounds off for over a year. I no longer reach for a bag of cookies. I’ve never been more secure in myself and in the way I feel and look.” – Louisa M., Actress

Do I Need to Detox?

Do I Need to Detox?

I get asked this question a lot. Our bodies aren’t made to handle the amount of toxins we’re constantly exposed to. Toxin overload can lead to a whole host of illnesses and side effects. Take the quiz below to see if you need to do a cleanse.

  • Do you eat processed foods, fast food and/or eat out regularly?
  • Do you eat non-organic animal products and produce?
  • Do you consume genetically altered foods?
  • Do you eat foods containing hydrogenated oil?
  • Do you or have you used artificial sweeteners (Nutrasweet/Aspartame, Splenda, Sweet n Low)?
  • Do you eat foods containing preservatives, additives, dyes, or sweeteners?
  • Do you charbroil or grill foods?
  • Do you drink coffee, soda or alcohol regularly?
  • Do you drink unfiltered tap water?
  • Do you use a microwave?
  • Do you microwave/cook/store food in plastic containers?

If the majority of your answers are yes, then your diet contributes significantly to your toxic load. Most likely, you’re also exposed to other irritants such as pollution, cigarette smoke, dry cleaning fluids, cosmetics and beauty products, exhaust fumes, cleaners, and medications.

You might want to consider detoxing, if you’re experiencing any of the following:

Weight gain

Fatigue

Food cravings

Insomnia

Reduced mental clarity

Poor digestion

Low libido

Autoimmune disorders

Cancer

Hormonal Imbalances

Thyroid Disorders

Adrenal Exhaustion

Infertility

Arthritis

Not all cleanses are created equal. Many of my patients try one, that ‘everyone’ is doing with no results.  Sometimes, they even feel worse. It’s important to have a qualified physician help you find one that is right for you. When done correctly, the results can be life changing. And remember, if you go back to your old habits once you’ve completed a cleanse, the benefits won’t last. I see a lot of people go through the effort, but don’t change their lifestyle. I highly recommend avoiding unhealthy foods and products to guarantee long lasting results.

Live natural. Live well.

Heather

ADD and your child

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 8 percent of children aged    4 to 17 are diagnosed with ADHD.  Many of these cases are prescribed Ritalin.  For those  of you without kids, Ritalin is a drug made up of methylphenidate which is a stimulant affecting the central nervous system.

As more and more kids are being prescribed Ritalin, more and more parents wonder:  What am I giving my child?  Most can agree that the number of children under 17 that     are taking drugs to treat ADHD in this country is surprising.  However, Attention Deficit Disorder and hyperactivity is a real problem and parents feel a burning need to ensure the wellbeing of their children. I fervently believe that these mental health issues in children are real, and must be treated, but I would like to recommend acupuncture, herbs, and proper nutrition are safer, long lasting approaches.

While doctors will often refer to the drug as a “mild” stimulant, the fact is, Ritalin is a stimulant.  While some stimulants can indeed yield positive results in adults and children, it is important to understand what’s going on physiologically, and to be aware of potentially harmful side effects.  Here are some of the basics:
- Stimulants can raise heart rate, temperature, and blood pressure.
- Stimulants are often addictive.
- Stimulants can lower appetite thus compromising a child’s sense of proper nutrition.
- Prolonged use or abuse of stimulants can have mental side effects as well,
including anxiety, paranoia, and may cause aggression.

If your child is currently using Ritalin and experiencing unpleasant side effects, ask your physician about alternative treatments.  As a healthcare professional, I know that first and foremost is your child’s wellbeing.  Whenever using acupuncture for kids, I like to show them that it is safe by placing the needles on their parents.  This eases some of the worry that children may have when it comes to needles.  Any licensed acupuncturist will make sure to move slowly and adjust for a child’s comfort level.  Most kids feel triumphant after undergoing the treatments and their parents proudly report a new sense of calm that has swept over their household.

Acupuncture for kids (or acupressure as an equally effective no-needle alternative), has been growing and the results are incredible.  Over 150,000 kids received acupuncture treatments last year alone, and recent studies are showing that these treatments have been effective for almost two thirds of patients, according to the 2008 report published by the National Center for Health and Alternative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health.

I have seen these results firsthand.  For the past decade of my practice I have been so inspired by the children who have come through my doors.  Children who could not sit still, had no interest in studying, and who’s mood swings were off the charts.  These are special, sometimes brilliant children whose hyperactivity has crippled their performance in school and put strain on their social development.  Chinese medicine has provided kids and parents with a working solution that is painless, and side effect free.

Please, if you have more questions about Attention Deficit Disorder or anxiety, do ask.  Because when it comes to the health of you and your children, communication is key.

Live natural.  Live well,

Heather

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