Category Archives: Expert Advice


Natural Health Practitioners: Are You Taking Charge of Your Own Health?

Thomas Edison once said: “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest patients in the maintenance of the human frame, in diet, and in the prevention of disease.”

Connecting with a Naturopathic Doctor (ND) as part of your health-care team is a great way to incorporate a more holistic approach.

ND’s can educate, empower and motivate their patients to take personal responsibility for their health by guiding them in how to adopt a healthier lifestyle, diet, and attitude.

Taking charge of one’s health means learning how to prevent disease rather than just popping a pill for any given ailment.

But, the truth is out. As a dedicated Health Practitioner, running a busy clinic or practice can sink your own health – and your sanity by times!

It’s great that you feel called to help so many other people to re-prioritize, get healthier, and practice self-care, and it’s incredibly rewarding work – that’s why you do it!

Take your own advice, take care of yourself

You may genuinely feel that all of your efforts have propelled you ahead in your business, but all of that “busyness” can sometimes come with lots of added stress.

How to not lose sight of your own health needs while building your practice

Think of it this way – if you’re not feeling your best (body & mind), your work will suffer. As a busy Health Practitioner, this means that your business will also eventually suffer. It’s as simple as that. So, let’s try to change our own health-diluting practices with a few simple tips:

Make self-care a top priority 

Self-care is not selfish or an indulgence, nor is it even an option anymore in our daily lives. It is paramount to our well-being as well as to our success in a health-focused business.

Self-care refresher 

It’s those activities that negate the impact of both emotional AND physical stressors. Things like fueling our bodies with health-optimizing foods, moving our bodies regularly (breaking a sweat!), restorative sleep, and “decompression-type” practices like yoga, meditation & breathing exercises.

Basically, all the things that you’ve been guiding your patients in!

Be sure to schedule these practices into your own day and show yourself that you are just as worthy (as the patients you dedicate so much of your energy to) of time and space that is all yours.

Stay as active as you can

There’s no doubt that you’ve started to feel the negative effects of sitting at your desk in front of your computer for longer and longer periods of time. Things like eye strain, headaches, low back pain, neck pain, and poor circulation.

Sitting goes hand-in-hand with being sedentary, and this deadly combo is associated with serious health concerns like obesity, high cholesterol, and metabolic syndrome.

The most serious damage to your body is when it is chronically in the same position with little or no movement for 60-90 minutes or more at a time.

Some practices to offset all of this prolonged sitting: 

  • Exercise daily – ever heard of Dead Butt Syndrome – or Gluteal Amnesia? It’s a thing! Focus on strengthening the posterior (back side) of your body – back, glutes, hamstrings and stretching the anterior (front side) – chest, pelvis and hip flexors.
  • Take frequent and regular breaks – aim for once an hour or several throughout the workday.
  • Invest in a stand-up desk – this will help you to become more aware of your posture and engage your core muscles.
  • Consistent movement, whether sitting or standing – yep, you have permission to fidget while you work.

Get in the blue-free zone 

In our highly digitized world, the amount of “screen time” we accrue is astonishing. In fact, children in North America are exposed to devices (phones, tablets and tv’s) for an average of 7.5 hours daily. WOW!

Adults aren’t that much better off as 91% of us rely on our smartphones for our everyday tasks from staying connected with people to online shopping to watching how-to videos on every subject imaginable.

While our screens are extremely helpful in daily life, they can also have a significant impact on our health. Of course, there are the ones we mentioned already, like eye strain, neck pain, and headaches. But, excessive screen time can alter our body’s natural circadian rhythm. Yikes!

For these reasons, you must cut down on the blue light exposure accrued from all devices.

A few ideas for “device detoxing”: 

  • Use the screen dimming function or night screen masking apps for your phone & tablet
  • Blue light blocking (anti-glare) glasses to wear while using a computer or device
  • A blue light blocker coating on your next pair of eyeglasses
  • Set a defined limit of no screen work at least ONE hour before bed to allow your eyes and your brain to decompress and “detox” the blue light pollution – 2-3 hours is even better!

More ideas HERE in “The Day & Nighttime Blues” article over on the Orange Naturals blog.

Then, once you’ve finally got yourself into bed, there’s the sleep factor: good quality, restorative sleep is not only vital to functioning and performing effectively in our jobs but to our very survival.

Running a busy health & wellness business can be one of the hardest gigs out there because you’re trying to be the best possible health role model and key support person to so many others while trying to maintain your own health.

It’s imperative that you respect and honour your own health if you’re going to put your best body and mind forward in your practice – and in your business. Just like you would tell your patients – stay positive and be kind to yourself! 

ND Perspective: Allergy and Sensitivity Testing

The development of allergies is becoming more and more common. The same goes for sensitivities to foods, chemicals and environmental factors.

Our immune system and cellular tissue can become compromised due to inflammatory responses from the mechanisms of each reaction – especially through responses from sensitivities.

Here’s a little more information on the what and why of allergy and sensitivity testing – from an ND’s perspective.

Allergy 

A type 1 hypersensitivity reaction is an immediate release of histamine by IgE antibodies when exposed to an allergen. This type of allergy shows up quickly and sometimes with life-threatening symptoms such as swelling of lips or face, difficulty breathing and anaphylactic shock. The cause of the reaction is usually quite clear such as peanuts and shellfish.

Immune complex disease 

A type 3 hypersensitivity is mediated by IgG antibodies. This type of process antibodies bind to antigens and there is a gradual formation of antibody-mediated complexes (immune complexes) that can deposit in tissues and joints. Over time, this can lead to chronic inflammation, which can lead to an array of varying delayed onset of symptoms, like headaches, migraines, irritable bowel syndrome, asthma, joint pain, eczema, fatigue and many other health concerns.

Allergy testing 

type 1 hypersensitivity

Skin prick testing determines type 1 hypersensitivity, usually done through your medical doctor, where a purified allergen is injected just below the skin to produce a controlled reaction. This process usually tests for allergies like pollen, dander, dust mites, pet dander or certain foods.

If there is a known IgE reaction, foods that are causing an anaphylactic reaction must be avoided indefinitely.

type 3 hypersensitivity 

Food Sensitivity testing exists to determine type 3 hypersensitivity reactions. It is a blood test done in a lab and usually requisitioned by a naturopathic doctor. This type of test can detect sensitivity for over 200 specific foods as well as yeast overgrowth (Candida albicans). It measures the food-specific IgG antibodies found in the blood.

The test may also reveal high levels of IgG antibodies to food that you never or rarely eat, but the same proteins can exist in multiple foods and this is explained by the test results. ‘Treating the root cause’ is one of the foundational naturopathic principles. From an ND’s perspective, testing is beneficial in knowing what the culprit is that is causing the IgG reaction.

Environmental allergens, however, are not so easily avoided. Developing preventative lifestyle methods such as introducing a high-quality air purifier in the house, cleaning dust & pollen laden surfaces, and closing windows, especially during the night, when pollen release is at its highest, can be helpful.

However, when it comes to foods that are causing a type 3 hypersensitivity reaction, a more preventative approach can be taken. First, removing the offending food(s) for a lengthy period of time is a must. Using substances to heal the gut and support the body’s digestive system while promoting proper elimination is the next step (see list below).

An intensive healing protocol, known as the Four R’s (remove, replace, repair and reinoculate is often used if the intestinal wall has been compromised due to ongoing inflammation from sensitivities).

Depending on the severity of the sensitivity and the tissue damage it may have caused, integration of the original foods that were eliminated may be slowly reintroduced while monitoring symptoms.

Key therapies in practice 

L-glutamine is an amino acid that repairs cells when damage has occurred from food sensitivities, like inflammation. This inflammation can create spaces between the cells in the gut which allow for bacteria, food and toxic by-products to enter the bloodstream and cause subsequent ailments.

Vitamin C  acts as a natural antihistamine in high doses and helps strengthen the immune system by increasing white blood cells, improves the linings of mucous membranes to reduce pollen and other airborne allergens. Vitamin C can be easily be taken just before bowel tolerance (at the point it causes diarrhea) to make sure maximum absorption and benefit have occurred.

Probiotics like CanPrev’s Pro-Biotik 15B, help strengthen the immune system by reducing inflammation and keep toxins moving through the system and out through the bowels efficiently.

Antioxidants like vitamins A, C, E, Zinc, Selenium, and CoQ10 and N-Acetyl-cysteine are key at providing phase 1 and phase 2 in the liver with the nutrients it needs to process allergens efficiently so they can be eliminated through the colon.

Omega 3 fatty acids have an amazing anti-inflammatory effect, thus calming down the symptoms associated with allergies but also improving the immune system at the same time.

Detoxification is very important for chronic allergies, such as seasonal, asthma and hives, and is an area I usually begin with when developing a patient’s treatment plan that will properly address their allergies. This approach not only helps with treating the current symptoms but also addresses the root cause of improving the functioning of the elimination organs to reduce overall allergenic potential.

This, in turn, allows food and toxins to be processed properly, reducing toxic buildup from waste particles from inflammatory reactions.

Using supplements to support liver health, such as CanPrev’s Detox Pro, can ensure the liver has the nutrients it requires to neutralize toxins and get them out of the body. Along with eating a healthful anti-inflammatory diet, lots of water and fiber are all essential to enhance these detoxification systems, improve one’s immune response and decrease food sensitivities and allergy symptoms.

Visit Dr. Laura Anderson ND online: http://www.lauraandersonnd.com/

Find a naturopathic doctor by visiting this link: http://www.findanaturopath.com/

Expert Advice: the dynamic duo D3 + K2

Our in-house team of naturopathic doctors, homeopaths, nutritionists and other licensed health care practitioners help you to make better informed decisions regarding your health, natural health supplements, natural medicine and meeting your wellness goals.

CanPrev Premium Natural Health Products works in partnership with natural health practitioners to bring you accurate and up-to-date information on all of your health questions.

D3 + K2 are a dynamic duo – here’s why you should take it

Q. I have been taking Vitamin D for many years as part of a preventative regimen. I recently discovered supplements containing both D3 and K2 together. How can I tell if there’s any real benefit to taking a D supplemented with K2, or should I just stick to taking D? How do the two work together?

Great questions.

Let’s start by examining how vitamins D3 and K2 work separately.

While most people are familiar with the vitamin alphabet A through E, vitamin K is relatively unfamiliar. That’s largely because unlike these other vitamins, vitamin K isn’t typically used as a dietary supplement (but more on that in a minute). Touted for its coagulant properties, it’s needed by the liver to create an enzyme called thrombin, which helps the blood to clot.

Vitamin D3 is the same naturally-occurring vitamin you get from the sun. In northern climates, it can be tough to get enough. It’s important to the body in many other ways, from helping our nerves need it to carry messages from the brain to the rest of the body to helping our immune systems fight off invading bacteria and viruses.

When you see vitamins D3 and K2 together in a single supplement, it’s meant for keeping your bones strong and healthy..

But I thought calcium was for bones?

Calcium and other minerals are needed for a healthy body structure. However, important cofactors like vitamins D3 and K2 help transport these minerals through your body so they are properly deposited in your bones (where they belong!)

The first step in this journey is making sure your dietary minerals are properly absorbed. Vitamin D3 works in the intestinal tract by increasing the ion permeability in your intestines. This helps increase the absorption of minerals like calcium from your intestinal tract into the bloodstream.

Then, the calcium travels through your blood. The danger here is that while it travels, some can end up getting stuck in the soft tissues of your blood vessels. This can lead to arterial hardening. Calcium build-ups here makes it harder for the heart to pump blood, reducing oxygen and blood supply. In severe cases, this can lead to heart attacks or strokes. Enter vitamin K2.

As a cofactor, vitamin K2 activates an important protein called matrix GLA. This important protein that prevents vascular calcification. That is, it keeps calcium from depositing in soft tissues, organs and blood vessels.

In the final step of this journey, vitamin K2 is called upon again to activate another important protein called osteocalcin. This protein helps deposits calcium and other minerals where we intended: in our bones.

So how can I bone up on my intake?

Good food sources of vitamin D include fatty fish such as salmon, tuna and sardines. Other foods such as milk, yogurt, orange juice, margarine and breakfast cereals may be fortified with vitamin D. However, it can be extremely difficult to get the right amount of vitamin D your body needs from food.

​Ultimately, ​two of the best ways to get vitamin D are by exposing your skin to sunlight and supplementation.

Conversely, most people get more than enough vitamin K from their diets. It’s found prevalently in green tea and dark leafy greens like kale, swiss chard and spinach. Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower are also great plant-based sources of vitamin K.

Animal based sources include dairy sources like yogurt and kefir or cheese, and liver provide K2. Natto is a fermented soy product high in a potent form of K2 known as menaquinone-7, which is used in CanPrev’s D3 + K2 drops and soft gels.


This article provides information that should not take the place of medical advice. We encourage you to talk to your healthcare providers (doctor, naturopathic doctor, nutritionist, etc.) about your interest in, questions about, or use of dietary supplements and what may be best for your overall health. Any mention in this publication of a specific brand name is not an endorsement of the product.


Expert advice | Magnesium Stearate – what’s it doing in your supplements?

Our in-house team of naturopathic doctors, homeopaths, nutritionists and other licensed health care practitioners help you to make better informed decisions regarding your health, natural health supplements, natural medicine and meeting your wellness goals.

CanPrev Premium Natural Health Products works in partnership with natural health practitioners to bring you accurate and up-to-date information on all of your health questions.

Magnesium Stearate: harmful or harmless?

Q. Why do you use magnesium stearate in your capsules? I’ve heard it negatively affects the immune system and could inhibit the absorption of supplements.

A. This is a question we receive a lot. Generally speaking, we try our best to avoid the use of unnecessary excipients in our products.

Our production team batters down the amounts of non-medicinal ingredients used in the products to the point where it is just the bare minimum required to manufacture.

We use a miniscule amount of magnesium stearate as an inert flow agent in order to blend our ingredients. It is essential for making sure doses are consistent from capsule to capsule.

So, what is magnesium stearate, anyway? It’s a magnesium salt created by joining magnesium to two stearic acid molecules. Stearic acid is a very common fatty acid found in foods like coconut oil. Recently, there have been some concerns as to whether magnesium stearate suppresses the immune system and inhibits nutrient absorption. We’ll go over each point.

The centrepiece to the first argument involves a 1990 study in the journal Immunology entitled “Molecular basis for the immunosuppressive action of stearic acid on T cells.”

A little context is needed: The purpose of this study was to find an immunosuppressive drug for people with organ transplants or who suffer from autoimmune diseases. Researchers exposed cultured T and B cells to a concoction of stearic acid mixed with diatomaceous earth and bovine albumin hoping that it would damage these cells.

First of all, this study is using regular stearic acids (like those found in foods) rather than magnesium stearate.

Secondly, while the study implicated stearic acid, this is really a case of  “the dose makes the poison.”

The study is not relevant to orally consumed stearic acid, because those immune cells were bathed in a clinically and physiologically impossible amount of stearic acid.

Magnesium is generally recognized as safe for ingestion up to 2500mg per kg of body weight daily. That means A 70kg man would have to ingest 175,000mg of magnesium stearate per day!

The other common criticism is that magnesium stearate may inhibit nutrient absorption. A few studies suggest that tablets or capsules containing magnesium stearate dissolve more slowly than those without. While this may be so, bioavailability studies show that magnesium stearate had no impact on the actual overall bioavailability of the supplement in blood serum.

If you are still concerned about magnesium stearate as a non-medicinal ingredient, it might be helpful to consider this. Stearic acid (the one talked about in the study) is a very common saturated fatty acid. An average person can ingest far more actual stearic acid from food than he or she would magnesium stearate in a dietary supplement.

A bar of chocolate can easily contain over 5,000 milligrams of stearic acid versus 10mg in a capsule. Furthermore, the liver converts stearates and stearic acid into oleic acid, a common monounsaturated fat, on a regular basis.

Hope this helps!


Disclaimer: The experts’ responses are for general information purposes only and is not intended to be medical advice. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should always consult your naturopathic doctor or other health care practitioner. Don’t delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice or discontinue medical treatment because of the information presented here.

Start living a healthier life today. Click here to submit your question in confidence.


 

Expert Advice | Core + Coffee

Welcome to Expert Advice a weekly series that features professional replies to your questions on natural health and wellness, and living a healthy life.

Our in-house team of naturopathic doctors, homeopaths, nutritionists and other licensed health care practitioners help you to make better informed decisions regarding your health, natural health supplements, natural medicine and meeting your wellness goals.

CanPrev Premium Natural Health Products works in partnership with natural health practitioners to bring you accurate and up-to-date information on all of your health questions.

Kicking Core up a notch 

Q. I started adding two scoops of CanPrev Core to my morning coffee. Can you tell me if the caffeine might have a negative effect on the nutrients?

A. This seems to be a common practice among athletes who are looking for a caffeine boost before a workout, in addition to their nutritional shake. However, taking caffeine with vitamins or minerals can potentially interfere with absorption and/or increase excretion.

For example, some sources claim that for every 150mg of caffeine ingested (about the amount in one cup of coffee), 5mg of calcium is lost – which isn’t much, but it can be problematic if you have osteoporosis and also drink a lot of coffee. It’s also thought that caffeine can inhibit the amount of calcium absorbed through the intestinal tract and deplete the amount retained by the bones.

Caffeine can interfere with iron absorption as well, though the effects are quite minimal at around 6 per cent or so. Because coffee is a diuretic, it also speeds up the workflow of the kidneys and causes you to excrete water soluble vitamins like B and C a little faster.

Regardless of whether you’re just drinking coffee or adding CanPrev Core to it, the risk of certain nutrient loss remains. If you’re deficient in a particular nutrient or have osteoporosis, it’s best to avoid the combination. If you’re really concerned about nutrient loss, you can simply top up with extra vitamins and minerals throughout the day (as recommended by your health practitioner), just in case!


Disclaimer: The experts’ responses are for general information purposes only and is not intended to be medical advice. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should always consult your naturopathic doctor or other health care practitioner. Don’t delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice or discontinue medical treatment because of the information presented here.

You can start living a healthier life today. Click here to submit your question in confidence.


 

Expert Advice | Dosages and detoxification

Welcome to Expert Advice a weekly series that features professional replies to your questions on natural health and wellness, and living a healthy life.

Our in-house team of naturopathic doctors, homeopaths, nutritionists and other licensed health care practitioners help you to make better informed decisions regarding your health, natural health supplements, natural medicine and meeting your wellness goals.

CanPrev Premium Natural Health Products works in partnership with natural health practitioners to bring you accurate and up-to-date information on all of your health questions.

Healthy Hormones for fibroids and ovarian cysts

Q. I just found out I have fibroids and an ovarian cyst. I bought the Healthy Hormones caps and want to ask if I should double or triple up on them for a few months?

A. Healthy Hormones™ is an all natural formula designed to promote healthy estrogen detoxification and relief of PMS. Because it is a potent dose already at two capsules per day, I would not recommend increasing it. A naturopathic doctor could possibly prescribe more than the two capsules per day, and we do recommend our customers and patients have a naturopathic doctor.

We have testimonials of fibroids and cysts shrinking or disappearing after one to three months on the Healthy Hormones, so I hope it will help in your situation. You may want to consider being on a low to full dose of Healthy Hormones long-term, but take a two-week break every three months or so.


Disclaimer: The experts’ responses are for general information purposes only and is not intended to be medical advice. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should always consult your naturopathic doctor or other health care practitioner. Don’t delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice or discontinue medical treatment because of the information presented here.

You can start living a healthier life today. Click here to submit your question in confidence.