There may not be an obvious link between sleep deprivation and your weight, but more and more research is showing just how important sleep is for your mood, mental performance, overall health and wellness, and especially when it comes to maintaining a healthy weight.
 
Many studies show that people who have a short sleep duration simply weigh more. And, in fact, as the levels of chronic (long-term) sleep deprivation have increased over the past 50 years, so have the growing epidemics of being overweight or obese.
Published in Deanna's Blog
 
Every time you think of inflammation, the obvious thought that runs in your mind is how it helps to fight harmful bacteria or heal from an injury. Well, it’s not wrong to think in this line because that’s good inflammation trying to keep you healthy. But, if your immune system is very active, it can make you sick.
 
Most people already know that chronic illnesses such as type-2 diabetes and heart disease are somehow linked to weight gain. Have you ever tried to know how inflammation is intertwined with these diseases?  Understanding bad (chronic) inflammation will go a long way in explaining the link.
 
Chronic inflammation
Probably you already know that heavily processed foods should be avoided. But, do you know how such foods hurt your health? For people with sensitivities, allergies, including other health issues, some certain foods could be problematic. Experts agree that there are foods that often work against you such as:
Trans fats (donuts, fries, donuts)
Added sugar (juice, soda)
Alcohol
Processed meats (hot dogs, cheeseburgers, sausages)
Refined carbohydrates (pasta, white bread, pastries)
 
If the fat cells cause chronic inflammation, then it’s expected that weight gain could also cause chronic inflammation. While gaining weight, some of the fat cells tend to expand beyond their capacity as they try to store the extra calories as fat. As they do this, they add to the inflammation that is already present in the body. If this happens, the cells are not just storing fat – they are turned into tiny inflammation factories that keep sending signals for activating the immune system. Losing weight will help in shrinking the fat cells and shut down those signals that activate chronic inflammation.
 
So, how can you reduce chronic pain? Losing weight and changing your diet are the two main ways to handle inflammation. These tips will guide you:
 
Take polyphenols and antioxidants
Polyphenol- and antioxidant-rich foods are great when it comes to fighting inflammation. Drink green tea and take as many fruits and vegetables as possible. Suitable vegetables include kale, asparagus, bell peppers, broccoli, spinach, beets and sweet potatoes. Fruits you should look out for include avocado, blueberries, and grapefruits.
 
Add spices
Studies have shown that spices like garlic, turmeric, cayenne, cinnamon, ginger and pepper have anti-inflammatory properties. Be sure not to overdo it. Sprinkling the spices liberally will work just fine.
 
 
Eat essential fats
Omega-3 and Omega -6 fatty acids can help to reduce inflammation when added into your diet. Many people take fewer omega-3 and more omega-6. The key is to balance both. Foods rich in omega-6 like nuts and seeds (including their oils) and refined vegetable oils can stir up inflammation. Omega-3 high foods like flax, salmon, avocado, walnuts and chia seeds will dampen it.
 
Exercise often
Exercising helps in releasing anti-inflammatory proteins from cells to the entire body. The best way to approach this is by working out moderately.  Examples of moderate exercises are jogging, walking for 45-60 minutes, at least three times a week.
Published in Deanna's Blog
Tuesday, 03 May 2016 15:29

Hypothyroidism Risk/Symptoms Checklist

You’ve gone for blood work and your doctor says your results are “normal”.  Your TSH reading is in the normal range, so your thyroid function is fine.  So why are you still experiencing symptoms? Lack of energy, weight gain, cold hands and feet, hair falling out and low sex drive.

Just because you fall within the “normal” range does not mean that this score is normal for you.  Because we are all bio-chemically unique, one person may feel great with a reading of 4.0 while you may feel best at 1.0.  Some doctors are reluctant to prescribe medication unless your reading is above 5.5, but if you are experiencing symptoms, suspect you are in the early stages of thyroid disease.  

So what is a girl to do when all else seems to fail? Well, there are a few things your Holistic Nutritionist can help you address to hopefully get your body back to a better state of balance.  Thyroid hormones require a balance of macro and micro nutrients.  Cleaning up your diet and identifying food sensitivities can go a long way to reduce the stress placed on the body and in turn the adrenal/thyroid axis.  Addressing mineral deficiencies, liver and digestive disturbances as well as managing other stressors such as lifestyle and exercise can all be beneficial to certain individuals.  

Hypothyroidism Risk/Symptoms Checklist

You can use this checklist to bring to your health practitioner to help aid in getting a proper diagnosis of hypothyroidism, or as background information in your discussions regarding fine tuning your dosage so you are at the optimal TSH level for your own level of wellness.

My risk factors for hypothyroidism include:

____ I have a family history of thyroid disease
____ I have had my thyroid "monitored" in the past to watch for changes
____ I had a previous diagnosis of goiters/nodules
____ I currently have a goiter
____ I was treated for hypothyroidism in the past
____ I had post-partum thyroiditis in the past
____ I had a temporary thyroiditis in the past
____ I have another autoimmune disease
____ I have had a baby in the past nine months
____ I have a history of miscarriage
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to cancer
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to nodules
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to Graves' disease/hyperthyroidism
____ I have had radioactive iodine due to Graves' Disease/hyperthyroidism
____ I have had anti-thyroid drugs due to Graves' Disease/hyperthyroidism

I have the following symptoms of hypothyroidism, as detailed by the Merck Manual, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, and the Thyroid Foundation of America

____ I am gaining weight inappropriately
____ I'm unable to lose weight with diet/exercise
____ I am constipated, sometimes severely
____ I have low body temperature (feel cold when others feel hot/need extra sweaters, etc.)
____ I feel fatigued, exhausted
____ Feeling run down, sluggish, lethargic
____ My hair is coarse and dry, breaking, brittle, falling out
____ My skin is coarse, dry, scaly, and thick
____ I have a hoarse or gravely voice
____ I have puffiness and swelling around the eyes and face
____ I have pains, aches in joints, hands and feet
____ I have developed carpal-tunnel syndrome, or it's getting worse
____ I am having irregular menstrual cycles (longer, or heavier, or more frequent)
____ I am having trouble conceiving a baby
____ I feel depressed
____ I feel restless
____ My moods change easily

____ I have feelings of worthlessness
____ I have difficulty concentrating
____ I have more feelings of sadness
____ I seem to be losing interest in normal daily activities
____ I'm more forgetful lately 

I also have the following additional symptoms, which have been reported more frequently in people with hypothyroidism:


____ My hair is falling out
____ I can't seem to remember things
____ I have no sex drive
____ I am getting more frequent infections, that last longer
____ I'm snoring more lately
____ I have/may have sleep apnea
____ I feel shortness of breath and tightness in the chest
____ I feel the need to yawn to get oxygen
____ My eyes feel gritty and dry
____ My eyes feel sensitive to light
____ My eyes get jumpy/tics in eyes, which makes me dizzy/vertigo and have headaches
____ I have strange feelings in neck or throat
____ I have tinnitus (ringing in ears)
____ I get recurrent sinus infections
____ I have vertigo
____ I feel some lightheadedness
____ I have severe menstrual cramps 

 

If you check off several of these symptoms and would like to make some positive changes, book an appointment with me and we will create an individualized plan to start addressing the root cause of your symptoms.  

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  519-270-1889

Published in Deanna's Blog
Wednesday, 20 May 2015 19:04

How Stress Can Affect Your Weight

A More Amazing You:  Health Strategy- Reduce Stress 

I realize this is not always an easy thing to do.  Most of us are juggling way too much and going through the day at warp speed, trying to get more and more accomplished.  By having a high stress level, not only is it harmful to your health, it’s harmful to your waistline as well. When you are constantly under stress, hormone levels, like cortisol and insulin are elevated.  The elevation of these 2 hormones can sabotage your weight loss efforts and actually cause weight gain.  

‘Feeling stressed can create a wide variety of physiological changes, such as impairing digestion, excretion of valuable nutrients, decreasing beneficial gut flora populations, decreasing your metabolism, and raising triglycerides, cholesterol, insulin, and cortisol levels.’  – Mercola.com

So, while you may think you can “handle it” as far as your stress level goes, we aren’t meant to be under constant stress and it takes its toll. If you are doing everything right as far as diet and exercise, but you’re under stress every day, you’re not going to see or feel the results you want. 

What are some ways you can reduce your stress level? 

Is there something you can start with this week? 

Published in Stress