Preggers?  Keep your nutrients up with IV Infusions!

Preggers?  Keep your nutrients up with IV Infusions!

By Dr. Mohammad Shegeft

shutterstock_499697026As a mom to be, you are of course doing everything you can to have a healthy newborn. Have you considered IV Therapy for nutrients during your pregnancy?

Intravenous Vitamin Therapy for pregnancy will directly inject each nutrient that you need into your bloodstream.  Through bypassing the digestive system, your body’s cells are directly exposed to the vitamins and minerals, giving them a chance to absorb them without interference and in as little time as possible.

The demand of many, but not all, micronutrients increases during pregnancy.  Deficiencies can exist because of losses or malabsorption due to inadequate intakes, lack of knowledge about adequate prenatal nutrients, dietary taboos associated with pregnancy, with potential adverse consequences for both mothers and newborn infants or simply because of several weeks of vomiting! Continue reading

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Travel Healthy This Holiday Season

Travel Healthy This Holiday Season

By Dr. Nitin Thapa, ND MD

 

shutterstock_529240987At Alpine Integrated Medicine, we take your travel health seriously. Whether you are travelling locally or internationally, it is wise to consult with your healthcare providers to make a plan for your healthy travel. Depending upon your destination and duration of travel and your health conditions, we can provide specific recommendations for your travel health. Besides drinking and using clean water, eating healthy and nutritious food and getting a good sleep, follow these tips to stay healthy and enjoy your trip:

Preventing common cold and  flu:

Common cold and flu are caused by viruses. They are transmitted through air when a sick person sneezes or by a direct contact with patient (by shaking hand or by touching contaminated surfaces for example) and touching your eyes and noses. Common cold usually has a gradual but mild course and lasts about a week.  Flu has similar symptoms but more sudden and severe course. Flu vaccine can help prevent you from getting the flu, but it is not 100% effective. Continue reading

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Naturopathic Support for Pre and Post Surgery

Naturopathic Support for Pre and Post Surgery

By Dr. Brooke Azie-Rentz

 

Growing up an athlete meant lots of injuries, fortunately none ever requiring surgery.  However, I was always fascinated by the human body and its ability to heal and repair, so much so that I almost became an orthopedic surgeon.  Life had other plans for me, and after pursuing an undergraduate degree in Physical Therapy, I now practice as a primary care physician.  Although this does not allow me to scrub in for surgery, it does allow me to help my patients in other ways, like educating patients in how best to prepare their bodies for surgery and maximize healing efforts once on the road to recovery.

Wound healing involves the activity of an intricate network of blood cells, tissue types, cytokines and growth factors.  All of this activity results in an increase in cellular activity which in turn causes an intensified metabolic demand for nutrients.  Here at AIM, we have developed a pre and post surgery protocol that makes sure to supply the correct amount of nutrients needed to meet this higher demand.  I won’t bore you with the actual amounts, but I will give you some info on the most important nutrients needed during this healing time.

  • shutterstock_163244129Calcium- needed to build and maintain bone
  • Iron- helps carry oxygen to wound sites in the form of hemoglobin
  • Zinc- plays a vital role in the immune system by reducing inflammation, decreasing bacterial growth and decreasing scar tissue creation. It helps speed the process of healing by being a key component in enzymes needed for this process to occur correctly.  Deficiency in zinc can lead to worsening of a scar.
  • Vit A- has an affinity for the skin and mucous membranes and why it helps with healing and growth of collagen
  • Vit D- helps in bone healing through the absorption of calcium
  • Vit E- antioxidant and disease fighting properties
  • Vit K- helps wound healing response, blood clotting and aids in bone repair
  • Vit C- Critical to wound healing! It is responsible for making connective tissue/collagen formation, a free-radical scavenger, supports immune function and works as a major anti-oxidant! Trauma is known to increase the body’s metabolic rate, which in turn decreases the amount of Vit C available to the body.
  • B vitamins- have been shown to speed up wound healing, increase protein synthesis and increase the amount of “repair cells” present at the wound site. This can help prevent excessive inflammation and make for shorter recovery times.
  • Bromelian (pineapple) – In addition to its uses as a digestive aid, when taking away from food, is a fantastic anti-inflammatory. It can reduce swelling and bruising, speed healing and recovery time, and prevent adhesions from forming.
  • shutterstock_519767113Essential Fatty Acids- (flax oil containing DHA and EPA) – capable of shifting the production of cytokines away from those that produce inflammation and more towards ones that are anti-inflammatory. In addition, they make cell and mitochondrial membranes more resistant to stress, which reduces tissue damage and prevents an over excitatory inflammatory response.
  • Rutin and bioflavonoids- helps by protecting and stabilizing blood vessels to prevent bruising and excess bleeding. In addition, bioflavonoids support the actions of Vit C.
  • Arnica 30c homeopathic- reduces bruising/inflammation and helps clear up the healing process
  • Phosphorus 30c homeopathic- helps decrease the potential for pneumonia related to general anesthesia

Alpine Integrated Medicine_13_DecThis list seems a little overwhelming, especially if thinking about how many pills it would take to get all this in!  Luckily, some supplement companies have made it easy, providing combination products such as First Intention™ by Integrative Therapeutics®.  At AIM, we have a convenient handout that easily lays out how to get the levels of these vitamin and nutrients into your body as easily as possible.  Remember, many substances are contraindicated a few days before surgery due to the potential to thin the blood and decrease clotting.  So we recommend that people start treatment 2-4 weeks before surgery that way you can build up levels and still have time to stop 3-7 days before surgery, and then restart supplements for another 4-6 weeks post surgery.

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IV Therapy Pre and Post Surgery—Prepare Better; Recover Faster

IV Therapy Pre and Post Surgery—Prepare Better; Recover Faster

By Dr. Mohammad Shegeft

shutterstock_221882890The purpose of a surgical procedure is to correct a problem within the body.  In most cases, the surgery achieves its goal and the person returns to a better state of health.  However as far as the body is concerned, the process is unnatural and traumatic.  It cuts into skin, divides cells, and can cause profuse bleeding.  Depending on the type of surgery performed healing can take several days, weeks or months.  Intravenous (IV) therapy can help speed up healing and get you back on your feet faster and in better condition.

shutterstock_167409356Vitamin C is necessary part of the biochemical pathway for collagen production.  Collagen helps heal wounds by providing structural integrity and support for the skin.  Although vitamin C alone is very helpful, we believe that a combination of vitamin C mixed with other vitamins, amino acids and minerals may be even better.  For example Zinc is also required for collagen biosynthesis.  IV glutathione may substantially reduce inflammation and promotes tissue repair while L-arginine and L-glutamine are essential amino acids that support immune function and wound repair. Continue reading

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A Naturopathic approach to ADHD

A Naturopathic approach to ADHD

by Dr. Mohammad Shegeft

shutterstock_536819794Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), is an increasingly pervasive condition in both pediatric and adult community.  Most recent data suggest that 10% of all children in US are diagnosed with ADHD disorder.  As a result, this illness is now considered the most common childhood behavior disorder with a six fold increase in boys over girls.  It is also important to note that United States claims the greatest prevalence of ADHD over all other nations.

Production of the medications used to treat ADHD has skyrocketed in recent decades.  In this diagnosis driven society, it is very easy to present to a doctor’s office with a symptoms and get a quick prescription aimed to cure the symptom.  But to believe that there is only one medication or remedy for every symptom, condition, disorder and disease is being uninformed.  In the field of Naturopathic Medicine, there is always multiple ways to approach every health problem and ADHD is no different. Continue reading

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The Midas Touch, but for Pregnancy

The Midas Touch, but for Pregnancy

By Dr. Brooke Azie-Rentz

 

shutterstock_271960607As I was prepping to write this article I came across a website that noted “The average woman in the U.S. spends 3 decades of her life (not necessarily all in a row) trying to avoid pregnancy and about 5 years trying to get pregnant, being pregnant, and going though the postpartum period, to get the 2 children most women say they want.” This is an amazing statement, but if you really think about it, ladies, it’s true!

Some women are fortunate to be very fertile and have no problem getting pregnant, others have to try for years and spend thousands of dollars to figure out why they are having trouble conceiving.  I’ve had success for over ten years helping people get pregnant without even trying, and have promoted this view at our clinic.  We even joke that there is something in the water, because people don’t come to us specifically for fertility very often, but it has been a wonderful side benefit of helping people become more healthy.  At AIM, we believe that optimizing your nutrition, lab values and mental/physical health are the basics needed to prepare your body for the most amazing journey it will go on.  Do that, and then just get out of your body’s way.

shutterstock_263812754First, optimizing your labs.  When you look at lab results, there are reference ranges.  Unfortunately, many of these ranges have not been updated in decades, so the idea of being inside the “normal range” I believe is not taking into account the individual person’s needs.  For example, the top end of normal for TSH (a thyroid marker) is 4.5 for a non-pregnant adult, but if you were pregnant in the 1st trimester that top number is 2.5.  So it would make sense to me, that if you were trying to conceive, having numbers more in line with where your body should be when you are pregnant would help to maximize the chance that you become pregnant and maintain a pregnancy.  At AIM, we tend to tighten the reference ranges for things like thyroid and iron not only for those who are looking to have a child, but for everyone!  I find that raising thyroid hormone levels and making sure iron is at least at 50% is a huge step towards supporting a healthy pregnancy.

shutterstock_497282461Next, genetics.  Most people think about genetics only in how it pertains to what color eyes or hair their child is going to have or serious diseases that might run in the family.  I want people to think about genetics before they even think about becoming pregnant.  One genetic mutation that has been key in helping people conceive and maintain a pregnancy is MTHFR (methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase).   This gene has to do with the activation and utilization of folate in the body.  If there is not enough, a baby can be born with neural tube defects, but most common is for the baby to be spontaneously aborted around the 6-8 week mark.  I have asked genetic counselors when do they check for this in a woman having trouble conceiving, and they said only after they have had 3 miscarriages.   Because of the early miscarriage timing, I believe that many women don’t even know they were pregnant when they have these miscarriages, they just thought that they had a late period.  For this reason, many women don’t get tested for this mutation, which is easily treated with a special form of folate.  Supplementing this vitamin has been a huge turning point in many women coming to us for pregnancy support.   In fact, when I start people on MTHF treatment I warn the women that this will make them more fertile because I have seen pregnancies occur within a month of starting treatment!

Now, we already discussed optimizing your labs, but what about optimizing your mental and physical health.  The easy things to talk about are cutting down on alcohol and if you are smoking, stop!  The harder thing to discuss is the mental health and stress around becoming pregnant.  The first thing I tell couples trying to become pregnant is that they are no longer in charge of worrying about being pregnant… I am.  I don’t want people peeing on ovulation sticks every 24 hours and worrying about their ovulation window.  Sometimes the stress of planning the timing of sex to correspond with ovulation puts more stress on both partners to perform, meaning that the act is more robotic and sterile…in other words, not fun!  I want people to enjoy sex and their partner.  Having a general idea of the week you are most likely to get pregnant is fine, but checking basal body temperature daily and lying in the fetal position after sex may be taking it a touch too far.   To help deal with the stress and also the toxic burden our bodies have due to environmental pollution, alcohol, drugs, and stress, I recommend people use acupuncture.  Not only is it great at detoxifying the body, but it also is a great stress reliever.  In addition, a good acupuncturist can also help optimize the gynecological cycle and help in preparing the uterus for pregnancy.

In my experience, pregnancy is a process that for some seems easy but for others can be a burden.  No matter where you fall, there are basic tips to making sure your pregnancy is optimal, for both you and the baby.  Diet and nutrition, stress reduction, and optimization of mental and physical health are tools that every person, both male and female, should consider when planning a pregnancy.  Here at AIM we don’t claim to be a fertility clinic, but we find that by making sure people are as healthy as they can be, we have a pretty good success rate.

Resource:

http://www.rodalewellness.com/health/11-tricks-to-optimize-your-chances-of-getting-pregnant/slide/1

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IV Spotlight: Chelation Therapy and Heavy Metal Detoxification

By Dr. Mohammad Shegeft, ND

 

Heavy Metal Chelations using EDTA

IV Drip MaleEthyl Diamine Tetraacetic Acid (EDTA) was developed in Europe in the first half of the last century for use in industry and water purification (removal of lead).  In 1940s, the US naval physicians began noticing numerous incidents of lead poisoning among sailors assigned the duty of painting warships.  Since EDTA was found to have particular affinity to Chelation properties, especially in regards to heavy metals, the physicians used IV EDTA Chelation Therapy to remove the lead with excellent results.  Historically, chelation was used to reduce plaque in heart patients, but in the past half century, with the advent of other conventional heart medicine, EDTA therapy has lost favor and has been regarded as “alternative medicine”.  That said, it is still the only FDA approved treatment for the removal of lead, and its benefits reach far beyond just that.

 

What is Chelation Therapy?

Chelation Therapy is an intravenous (IV) therapy using synthetic amino acid “EDTA” to bind with metal ions forming a stable structure.  This in turn transports the toxic metals to the kidneys and then excreted through urine.  As previously mentioned, the FDA has approved chelation as the only treatment for lead poisoning. Continue reading

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