Nutrition

Personalized healthcare

3d render of dna structure, abstract  background

The mapping of the human genome published in February 2001, launched healthcare into a new era of medicine. DNA sequencing paved the road for more individualized medicine and gave birth to the concept of genomic medicine.  Heather Krebsbach ND is able to utilize the growing knowledge and understaning of genetics to inform her naturopathic medicine practice here is Portland, Oregon.

 

The National Human Genome Research Institute defines genomic medicine as "an emerging medical discipline that involves using genomic information about an individual as part of their clinical care (e.g., for diagnostic or therapeutic decision-making).”

 

Genomic medicine has helped to identify: 

·     Targeted medication for individuals to decrease side effects 

·     Medications that are more effective for specific diseases 

·     Examine the relationship our environment has on our genes

·     Ways to change diet and lifestyle to support the genes we were born with 

 

Genomic medicine isn’t confined to cancer research or what medications to use, there are a number of tests that are centered on optimizing health. For instance, we now have a picture of how each individual is detoxifying as well as making neurotransmitters. With this information, supplements, diet and lifestyle recommendations can be personalized. 

 

This technology is going even further by mapping out our intestinal microbiota, or the community of bacteria, yeast and viruses living in each of our digestive tracts. Many of these organisms have a beneficial relationship that keeps us healthy and much research is going into this area to identify the effect specific organisms have on diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. There are numerous tests on the market, but it’s important to have a conversation with your healthcare provider to determine the “right” test for you.

 

Sport Injury and Sports Recovery Research and Development

The field of naturopathic medicine excels in its ability to individualize health care to combine diet, lifestyle, herbs and nutraceutical supplements. Now genetic testing is taking this quality of care to new heights by enabling naturopathic doctors to identify and treat chronic or underlying conditions in a more holistic way. 

 

 

Quality Foods = Quality of Life

Beets, peppers, onions, green beans, spices on a dark background. Fresh garden vegetables. Vegetarian, detox, diet food

What Do Diets Have In Common?

We are constantly inundated with the latest and greatest diets or food trends. All this information can make it difficult to know what we really should be eating. But if we strip away all the hype, we can see that the majority of diets have a couple similar themes; such as eating more vegetables, less refined carbohydrates and minimal sugar. For the best outcomes, we can skip the latest dietary trend and instead focus on incorporating these main principles to improve the quality of our health!

A Bounty of Vegetables, a Bowl of Grains and a Dash of Sugar

To promote optimal health, we need the cells in our body to function as optimally as possible. When we eat vegetables, they are loaded with vitamins and minerals that are essential anti-oxidants for healthy cellular function and the prevention of disease. Green leafy vegetables are rich in Vitamins A, C, K, B, Folate, Calcium and Iron. And, when we add an array of colorful veggies like bell peppers, carrots, cabbage, purple kale, radishes and squash we are eating our daily multi-vitamin. These foods can decrease inflammation to lessen pain, protect our vessels, support our brain and improve our energy level. 

On the flip side, cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup is considered to be pro-inflammatory and can damage our cells and vessels, which contributes to dementia, diabetes, high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. Refined carbohydrates, like bread, pasta and crackers increase our blood sugar levels and can have the same impact in our body when consumed in high amounts or on a regular basis. 

A 2014 review of studies examining carbohydrates and chronic disease showed that a diet low in refined carbohydrates may offer anti-inflammatory benefits to reduce the risk of type 2-diabetes and heart disease.[1]

Buddha bowl with quinoa, avocado, chickpeas, vegetables on a wood background, Healthy food concept. Top view.


How Should I Add These Foods Into My Diet?

  • Strive for 2 servings of green leafy vegetables per day. Such as spinach, kale, chard, arugula, mustard greens

  • Add 3-5 servings of colorful vegetables per day 

  • Avoid cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup 

  • Eat refined carbohydrates no more than 20% of the time. Instead choose intact grains like brown rice, wild rice, Forbidden rice, quinoa, millet, oats and squash

  • Choose organic fruits, vegetables and meat whenever possible

  • Incorporate healthy fats at every meal like avocados, avocado oil, olive oil, nuts and seeds

  • Pay attention to the cooking temperature of oils and store them in a cool, dark cabinet

Ward Off Disease by Looking In Your Refrigerator!

The old saying “you are what you eat” holds true. We now know that quality matters and not all calories are the same. And in order to spark your metabolism and improve the function of all your cells, you need proper nutrition. So, if you want your body to perform at it’s highest level then you need to fuel it with the highest quality foods. 

Research is now supporting the benefit of high quality food such as organic, free-range meat and wild caught fish. A study published in 2018, showed that eating a diet high in organic food was associated with a reduced risk of cancer.[2]And not only is the quality of our food important, but how we prepare them as well. Incorporation of healthy fats is essential, but keeping them from spoiling will reduce oxidative damage

CLICK HERE to find our more about how you can optimize your diet and improve your health with Dr. Krebsbach. 


[1]Buyken, AE, Goletzke, J, Joslowski, G, Felbick, A, Cheng, G, Herder, C, Brand-Miller, JC. Association between carbohydrate quality and inflammatory markers: systematic review of observational and interventional studies. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition Am J Clin Nutr. 99(4): 2014;813-33.[2]https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/article-abstract/2707948

20% off Vitamin D Supplements this December

Vitamin D is naturally produced in our skin when we are exposed to sunlight.  In the Pacific Northwest, dark, overcast days cause many of us to become deficient in vitamin D during the winter months.   In this enviornment It is crucial that we supplement with vitamin D.
 
Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency:  

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  • Fatigue

  • Generalized aches and pains

  • Sense of not feeling well

  • Weight gain

  • Slow recovery from colds or flus

  • Restless sleep

 
Benefits of Vitamin D:  

  • Preventing seasonal affective disorder (SAD)

  • Strong bones and teeth

  • Healthy immune response to colds and flus

  • Supports healthy brain and nervous system

  • Supports lung and cardiovascular health

  • Deep sleep

 
We carry a high quality 5000 iu vitamin D pill.  We feel that 5000 ius of vitamin a day is a safe dosage to be used throughout the dark months of the year.  Please consult with one of our practitioners about supplementation of vitamin D.  

Golden Milk!!!

Despite hundreds of years of use in India, we at Inner Gate have only recently discovered golden milk and it's wonderful health benefits.  Golden milk is simply made from the combination of coconut milk, coconut oil, ginger and turmeric.  Many recipes include honey and black pepper for enhanced flavor and better absorption of the turmeric.  

The health benefits of golden milk come mainly from turmeric and the polyphenol curcumin that turmeric contains.  Known as the spice of life in India, Turmeric has potentially hundreds of benefits to our health. These include controlling many inflammatory processes.  This affects conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, and gout.  Turmeric has been shown to control cholesterol levers, suppress the symptoms of diabetes and alzheimers, and inhibit tumor growth! 

Read more about turmeric HERE

Making Golden Milk is easy.  There are many recipes online which all seem to follow a similar format.  This recipe is one that we tried and really enjoy.  it includes a few other ingredients to make the drink more warming for these cold winter months. 

Benefits of Fish & Algae Oils

Omega-3 fatty acids


Fish and algae oils are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids.  These fatty acids, know as DHA and EPA, are precursors of eicosanoids.  Eicosanoids are signaling molecules know for their ability to activate anti-inflammatory pathways in the body.

Omega-3 fatty acids accumulate in fish that eat micro-algae.  The algae naturally produce the oils.  The fish bio-accumulate the oils produced by the algae.  Fish do not produce these oils on their own. 
 

Benefits of EPA oils:

  • Cardiovascular health: Omega 3 fatty acids reduce harmful blood cholesterol levels.

  • Asthma: Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation, a key component to asthma.

  • Soothes Arthritis: Painful arthritis is an inflammatory process and omega 3 oils reduce inflammation systemically.

  • Alzheimer's disease: Some studies suggest a protective role omega 3 oils may play in this complicated disease, reducing memory loss and acting as a preventative.

Benefits of DHA oils:

  • Brain Development/ function: Developing brains use high qualities of DHA oil. These are especially important for pregnant mothers and young children.

Dangers of Fish Oils:

  • Heavy metals: High level predator fish accumulate environmental toxins including mercury, PCBs and Chlordane.

  • Dwindling wild fish stocks: Overfishing of the oceans is a great concern for the future health of our planet.

Ways to get Omega 3 Acids Safely & Responsibly: 

  • Algae supplements: These are newer to the market but are a safe way to get healthy oils with no environmental cost to dwindling fish stocks. We will be researching high quality algae supplements as a possible replacement to fish oils in the near future.

  • Responsible companies: Inner Gate acupuncture carries Nordic Naturals brand fish oils. This company has strong sustainability practices. They also have high purity, low heavy metal and low spoilage of their products.

 

Organic Foods VS. Conventional Foods

organic vs. non organic meats, cheeses, fruits and vegetables

For many years consumers have demanded and paid a premium for organic foods. Many believed that the food was somehow healthier than food produced with fertilizers, pesticides and chemicals.  Others paid for the premium because it meant fewer pesticides and herbicides on their food and in the environment.

The European Commission, the executive body of the European Union has performed a major review analyzing differences in organic vs. non organic meats, cheeses, fruits and vegetables.

The commission found that organic meats and cheeses had 50% higher omega-3 fatty acid content that conventional meats and cheeses!

Omega-3 fatty acids are associated with a decreased risk of heart disease and inflammation in the body.  These oils are found in predominance in cold water fish like anchovies and sardines. The health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are firmly established.

Although there is no direct research on it yet, it stands to reason that a diet with organic meats and cheeses vs. conventional meats and cheeses would be healthier based solely on the omega-3 content of the foods. 

A review of fruits and vegetables found that organic fruits and vegetables had higher levels of antioxidants than their conventionally produced counterparts. Antioxidants are molecules which inhibit damaging free radicals in our bodies. Also noted was less pesticide residue on the organic produce.

 

Coffee: To Do or Not To Do?

We drink a lot of coffee. In fact in the United States it is estimated that we drink around 400 Million cups of coffee per day!

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There is a lot of conflicting information about whether or not drinking coffee is good or bad for us.  Researchers are striving to understand the effects of coffee on our bodies.

There are several established positive effects of coffee.  These include lower risk of some types of cancer, Parkinson's disease,  diabetes, and heart disease.  Of course if we drink a coffee with lots of natural or artificial sweeteners these benefits may be completely eliminated.

There are also several established negative effects of coffee.  These include, insomnia, stress, panic attacks, and intolerance to proteins in the coffee beans.

Understanding how we are individually affected by coffee is somewhat complicated. There is a gene known as CYP1A2. This gene codes for an enzyme that metabolizes caffeine in the liver. Half of us carry a variant of this gene that will slow the metabolism of caffeine. It's impossible to know which version of the CYP1A2 gene we have without doing genetic testing.

If we are the ones with the slow metabolizing variant then coffee is associated with a higher risk of heart disease and hypertension!

Basically coffee may be good for us and it may be bad for us.

If we have these types of symptoms it may be important to avoid coffee and other sources of caffeine:

  • Adrenal Fatigue: Fatigue, Difficulty Waking, Weak Immunity, Salt Cravings

  • Stomach Fire: Bad Breath, Acid Reflux, GERD, Ulcers, Abdominal Pain

  • Heart Fire: Insomnia, Panic Attacks, Anxiety

Benefits of fermented foods

Fermenting is an ancient technique of food preservation. It also enhances the nutrition available in some of its nutrients and makes the food more digestible and easily absorbed.

HEALTH BENEFITS OF FERMENTED FOODS

In fact, lactic acid fermentation converts carbohydrate sugars into cellular energy and lactate. The final products of the fermentation are full of vitamins, minerals, probiotics and enzymes. These aid digestion and limit the amount of sugar in the final product. This makes it really good for the “good” bacteria in our guts.

 

Health benefits of fermented foods include:

·      Increases absorption of vitamins. This includes both vitamin A and C.

·      Aids detoxification of the body. Natural chelates are formed during fermentation. These chelated bind to toxins making them easy for the body to eliminate.

·      Reduces the sugar content of our foods. Because fermentation breaks down simple sugars there are not present I the final products.

·      Supports immune function: Because our guts are so full of immune cells many believe this is one of the main areas where the immune system fights disease.

Love Your Gut and Feel Better

improve our abdominal health

Many of us struggle with weight gain, fatigue and gut distress. Understanding how to care for and nourish the good bacteria in your gut can change these patterns and bring about better health.

Bacteria live in us and on us

Although there are many infamous bacteria we do anything to avoid its important to recognize that there are many bacteria that we couldn’t live without. In fact, there are over 100 trillion bacteria cells in our bodies! That means there are more bacteria cells than human cells in our bodies.  

A healthy gut leads to full body health

Most bacteria live in our gut. By focusing on creating health in this complex internal environment we can realize better vitality, energy and digestion.

Generally speaking there are both “good” and “bad” bacteria inside of us.  The good cells control the overgrowth of bad cells and maintain balance. Research is showing that even cells we refer to, as “bad” cells may be important in small quantities.

Causes of imbalance

Sugar and processed food consumption promotes the growth of bad bacteria in the gut by giving them access to lots of easily available simple carbohydrates.

Antibiotics are great at killing bacteria, bad and good bacteria. Because they indiscriminately kill bacteria they often lead to imbalance in the gut. Bad bacteria are capable of taking over when the good bacteria are killed off.  Public health officials and doctors have been working to curb the excessive use of antibiotics. Unfortunately, antibiotics are still used in the agricultural industry to make livestock fat.

Stress can directly influence the production of digestive enzymes and too much stress can wreak havoc on our guts.

Establishing a healthy gut

There are many easy steps that we can take to improve our abdominal health.

Stop eating sugar and refined foods. This is the easiest way to make significant change in our abdominal health. These foods feed bad bacteria by eliminating these foods our guts can recover quickly.

Eating fermented food can help supply our guts with more of the good bacteria that make us healthy. These foods include kimchi, sauerkraut and kefir.

Eating foods rich in soluble fiber supplies our bodies with prebiotic materials. These are materials that the good bacteria can use to grow on and flourish. Foods like sweet potato, Brussels sprouts, garlic and kale are great at nourishing our good bacteria.