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Detoxification: Once Optional, Now Essential

by Mila McManus, MD

The human body needs routine maintenance. Detoxification is essential to maintain optimal health and sustain strong immunity,

Most of us don’t hesitate to take our car to a professional for routine maintenance, but what about your body? The human body needs routine maintenance now more than ever. While a targeted effort at detoxification may have been optional in decades past, it is essential in our toxic times for anyone desiring to obtain or maintain optimal health, sustain strong immunity, and slow aging. It’s important to make detoxification both a daily focus, and a periodic hyper-focus. Consider once or twice a year implementing a specific targeted approach. Detoxification methods can range from gentle to aggressive, or from targeted organs to whole body, and the best options should be made individually based on your circumstances.

There are many different ways to promote detoxification. There are many things that need to be removed from the body. Common toxins/toxicants that can accumulate in your body include those from chronic infections (whether the infection is obvious or not), personal care products, foods and beverages, and the environment. Chronic infections, caused by bacteria, parasites, viruses, and mold are often stealthy lurkers causing a slow decline in health and can gain entrance in a multitude of ways every day. Environmental toxicants, such as plastics and heavy metals, are common in our air, water, body products, and food. 

The human body has five significant detoxification exit pathways: exhalation, mucus formation, sweating, urinating, and defecating.  The organs burdened with detoxification are the liver, kidneys, skin, mucous membranes, and lungs. Detoxification methods focus on these pathways and organ systems.

Here is a list of detoxification diets, therapies, and supplements offered here at TWIHW with highlights of what is targeted. January is a great month to focus on detoxification. Your medical provider can help you determine which ones might be most effective and necessary for you.*  Also check out our Winter Specials for some deals on detox!

Black Box Detox by Quicksilver – Thorough 4 week program, comprehensively targeting the hormones, plastic-related compounds, mold toxins, herbicides, and pesticides, and even metals on multiple levels. Includes protocol instruction booklet with dietary recommendations, as well as all detox supplements needed for the 4 weeks.

7- or 14- Day Core Restore by Ortho Molecular – a strategic system designed to safely support and promote the primary pathways of detoxification in the liver. The Core Restore kit provides three active formulas – Core Support, Alpha Base, and PhytoCore – which function synergistically to support Phase I and Phase II pathways of liver detoxification to help neutralize environmental pollutants, hormone disruptors, unhealthy estrogen metabolites, xenoestrogens (synthetic compounds that imitate estrogen), and other harmful toxins. This powerful trio of specialized formulas provides essential micronutrients, phytonutrients, and a source of easily digested, low-allergen protein that purifies the liver and fuels optimal biotransformation.*

14 and 21 day Detox Box by Designs for Health – The Detox Original 14- or 21- Day Program with PurePea™ has been created to support the body’s natural two-phase detoxification process. This is accomplished by providing the nutrients needed to support and balance phase I and phase II metabolic pathways, high levels of antioxidants for safe detoxification, and a comprehensive array of herbal hepatics and cholagogues (substances that support gallbladder function) to promote healthy liver function and elimination.* Instruction booklet with dietary guidelines included as well.

Prolon – 5 day program which mimics fasting without fasting. Program promotes weight loss, increased focus, clarity, and energy; triggers cell regeneration; triggers autophagy – the body’s way of cleaning up aging and damaged cells; supports maintenance of healthy levels of blood glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure as well as markers of inflammation. Everything needed is provided in the box. No shopping or food preparation. Included are meals and tasty snacks which are prepackaged and ready to go. 

Ultrabinder Sensitive by Quicksilver Scientific – Supplemental capsule, suitable for more sensitive individuals.*   Ultra Binder is formulated to catch heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, hormone mimics, food additives, mold and microbial toxins found in the intestinal lining. It contains an optimized blend of zeolite, bentonite clay, activated charcoal, and chitosan. Helping to soothe and repair the GI Tract, mildly laxative acacia gum and soothing aloe vera are included. They can also support the health of the intestinal lining and the growth of friendly flora.* Ultra Binder is a low sulfur version of our immensely popular Ultra Binder®. It does not contain the IMD® mercury-binding complex.*

Health Reset Protocol – 28 day dietary/prescriptive therapy plan for restoration of gut and immune function, and addressing yeast overgrowth and/or leaky gut, or a gentler and less expensive Do-it-Yourself version using the dietary plan with herbal supplementation.

Liposomal EDTA by Quicksilver Scientific – A liquid supplement which supports the chelation process by binding to heavy metal ions in the digestive tract.

Para Cleanse I & II by CellCore Biosciences – an effective and natural gut cleanse to promote normal peristalsis (i.e., movement of the GI tract),  as well as to bind and remove pathogens and toxins in the system, and promote overall optimal gut health. Mimosa pudica polyphenols are extracted from this fern-like plant that has a long history of healing properties in Ayurvedic medicine. It acts to pull out toxins, parasites, heavy metals, biofilm, and other unwanted elements, resulting in a deep cleaning of the tract. This is recommended to perform for at least 2 months.  There is not a specific diet required for this.

HepatoThera forte by Klaire Labs – A convenient capsule formulated to help meet the liver’s higher demand for nutrients that support antioxidant pathways, detoxification mechanisms, and enzyme regulation during significant exposure to chemical toxins, heavy metals, drugs, and biological burdens.  This is a good supplement to support detox pathways on a daily basis.

IV  Nutritional Therapies – IV Vitamin C and Glutathione are especially effective antioxidants and supporters of detoxification pathways in the liver, improving skin health, boosting the immune system, and fighting infection. Call to learn more about available therapies.

Infrared Sauna – to learn more about all the benefits, including detoxification, click this link.

*All product descriptions have been taken from the manufacturer’s educational or marketing material.

By |2022-11-01T10:48:53-06:00January 5th, 2022|General|

Do Five & Detoxify

By Nancy Mehlert, MS

photo courtesy fit living tips .com

Promoting routine detoxification through our dietary choices is a simple thing everyone can do. 

Here are the top FIVE dietary detoxifiers:

#1 Eat organic food

#2 Eat your veggies – especially cruciferous vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cabbage, as well as cucumber, celery, carrot, zucchini, squash, watercress, artichoke, asparagus, ginger, turmeric, parsley, cilantro, lemon, apples, beets, and dark leafy greens.  (See our Green Juice recipe of the month in this issue!)

#3 Stay hydrated with clean, filtered water

#4 Avoid dairy (clogs lymphatic movement)

#5 Avoid processed, fake, manufactured and sugary food

By |2020-04-12T09:35:46-06:00April 14th, 2020|General, NANCY’S NUTRITIONAL NUGGET|

The Down and Dirty on Detoxing

By Mila McManus M.D.

Your body normally performs detoxification functions every day. There are five primary exit pathways for removal of toxins. They are:

  1. 1. Sweating through the skin
  2. 2. Urination
  3. 3. Bowel movements
  4. 4. Mucus formation to then blow, cough, or swallow
  5. 5. Exhaling from the lungs.

Internal organs that also play a critical role in the removal of toxins include the liver, kidneys, and lungs.  Any activities that promote sweating, urination, bowel movement, thinning of mucous, or deep breathing will assist in promoting detoxification.  Also, hydration is essential for detoxification.

Intentional promotion of detoxification has become a necessary lifestyle habit as a result of our increasingly toxic world where our food, water, air, chemical, and heavy metal exposures have exponentially increased over the last 60-80 years. The toxic burden on the body is significant and contributes to chronic inflammation, congestion, and disease.

The FIRST and BEST line of protection is to avoid as many toxins as possible in the first place!

Trying to detoxify by overcompensating with excess sweating and over-supplementation can be harmful. Improve what goes in by:

  • Eating organic food
  • Filtering the water you drink and in which you bathe
  • Filtering air and circulating fresh air in the home
  • Using chemical free personal care and laundry products
  • Using chemical free household products (cleaners, candles, fragrances, pesticides) 
  • Turning off Wi-Fi and electrical circuits in the bedroom at night while sleeping (electropollution)
  • Eliminating the use of as much plastic as possible, especially as it relates to food storage and preparation. (plastic water bottles, straws, microwave containers, storage containers, clingwrap)

It is also wise to intentionally and regularly employ lifestyle choices that promote detoxification.

Each of these options promote and encourage gentle detoxification:

  • IR Sauna  
  • Quality detoxification dietary plans such as Black Box Detox, Designs for Health 14- and 21-day programs, Core Restore 7- and 14-day programs and Prolon. (All available at TWIHW)
  • Fasting
  • Dry Brushing
    • Short instructional you-tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJfFe18L7pQ
  • Supplementation as recommended by your functional medicine specialist. Some possible choices include glutathione, N-acetyl cysteine, sulfur, chlorella, charcoal, and protease.

An increasingly useful approach is to test the body to determine what toxins are present so that optimal detoxification protocols can be precisely implemented.

  • Heavy metal testing
  • Environmental toxin tests

Both of these urine collection tests are available at TWIHW.

 

By |2020-04-12T09:48:51-06:00April 14th, 2020|General|

Black Box Detox II (Detox Program in a Box)

Black Box Detox II, Detox program in a box

 

By Quicksilver Scientific

Available at TWIHW

 

 

Many people begin the year with a detoxification program to get back on track and start the year out right.  This year, we are offering the BLACK BOX DETOX II, by Quicksilver Scientific.  While it is a supplement regimen for detoxification, and not a diet, we recommended that it be paired with a clean, whole food diet similar to our Health Reset Protocol, or a Paleo style diet.

For this, and other detoxification programs, give us a call or visit our website.

Quicksilver Scientific describes this 4-week program as – designed to support the body’s natural processes of detoxification and targets hormones, plastic-related compounds, mold toxins, herbicides and pesticides, and even metals on multiple levels. The box contains all the supplements needed for the protocol as well as complete instructions.  The box includes the following products:

  • Nanoemulsified DIM, which acts to open up the body’s endogenous antioxidant and detoxification systems, calm immune system reactivity and support healthy hormone metabolism. *
  • Liposomal Glutathione delivers the body’s core antioxidant and detoxification compound and is one of the anchors of the system. *
  • Liposomal Methyl B-Complex provides B vitamins necessary for cellular metabolism and detoxification reactions. The liver has a high demand for B-vitamins during active detoxification. *
  • Micellized Pure PC delivers phosphatidylcholine, the main component of cellular membranes and a component of healthy bile flow, a key support for liver and brain during active detoxification. *
  • Bitter X enhances the body’s natural elimination process in the liver/gallbladder and kidneys, by introducing herbs which boost their normal function, pushing the cellular and blood-borne toxins out through the urine and bile into the digestive tract. *
  • Ultra Binder delivers a comprehensive blend of toxin binders, chosen for their overlapping specificities, to efficiently bind many different classes of toxins in the GI Tract. *

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Information provided by Quicksilver Scientific.

 

 

 

 

By |2018-01-06T14:03:14-06:00January 5th, 2018|Articles, General|

InfraRed Sauna

By Mila McManus MD and Nancy Mehlert MS

The Woodlands Institute for Health and Wellness is pleased to announce that we now offer Infrared Sauna sessions at our office.

Why?  Two good reasons!  Our patients asked for it and it is a great way to promote health and wellness in the human body.

Benefits:

  • Improved brain function and reduced risk of Alzheimers[i]
  • Lowers risk of cardiovascular events[ii] by increasing heart rate in the same way exercise does
  • Reduction of pain and inflammation while increasing circulation and energy
  • Improves wound healing through increased circulation and oxygenation.
  • Detoxification including helping to excrete toxic metals like arsenic, lead and mercury[iii]
  • Stress reduction and relaxation through parasympathetic healing effects, helping the body to handle stress more effectively[iv]
  • Through detoxification and increasing metabolism and caloric consumption through sweating (like exercise), it can support a healthy weight loss regime
  • Through detoxification, it can improve skin tone, elasticity and help to alleviate acne, eczema, psoriasis and other skin conditions
  • May also be beneficial to people with asthma and chronic bronchitis[v]

What is Far Infrared Heat?

Infrared (IR) radiation is electromagnetic radiation of a wavelength longer than that of visible light, but shorter than that of radio waves. These are very long wavelengths which contain very few particles and are life supporting and required by the human body for optimal functioning.  This is in contrast to the more harmful short waves with high frequencies found in X-rays, gamma waves and microwaves.

How does it work?

Infrared sauna heats the body from the inside out, altering cells, cell membranes, DNA/proteins and cell fluids, including and especially water molecules.  At the cellular level, mitochondrial activity takes place which favorably impacts metabolism, improving overall biological activity. These changes can restore balance.   Many studies have found that regular and repeated infrared sauna therapy can contribute to overall well-being, reduce pain and inflammation, and support heart health and brain function.

How long does it take?

Infrared sauna treatments usually work well within 15-30 minutes of treatment. It is best to begin with 15 minutes and work up to a 20-30 minute treatment as the body becomes accustomed to the heat.  Regular and repeated treatments have yielded the best health results in studies.

Who can benefit?

The good news is that infrared saunas are safe and gentle for most people to use and studies have shown benefits especially for those with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic fatigue, poor digestion, depression and anger as well as chronic muscle and joint pain. [vi] In our stressful and toxic world today, everyone can benefit from increasing relaxation and detoxification.

Safety Considerations

  • While sauna use seems to be safe for most people you may want to talk to your health care practitioner about starting infrared sauna treatments if you have sensitive skin, a history of heart problems or take medications since certain medications can alter your perspiration and heart rate
  • Males may need to be concerned about long term heat exposure to their scrotum due the potential for decreased fertility that may result[vii]
  • Always listen to your body and slowly increase the length of your sessions over time to somewhere between 15-30 minutes per session to increase heat-stress tolerance.
  • Be sure to hydrate well prior to, during, and after the session to avoid dehydration.

Schedule Today!

  • $25 per session
  • Buy 4 sessions and get 1 free.
  • The technology works best with mostly exposed skin.  Room is private.
  • You can listen to the radio that’s in the sauna, or bring a CD of your own.
  • Bring a book to read.  Avoid bringing phones and other electronic devices into the sauna.  It’s a time to relax and unplug.

 

 

[i] Age and Ageing December 7, 2016

[ii] JAMA Internal Medicine February 23, 2015

[iii] Journal of Environmental and Public Health Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 184745, 10 pages

[iv] https://draxe.com/infrared-sauna/

[v] AM J Med. 2001 Feb 1;110(2);118-26

[vi] https://draxe.com/infrared-sauna/

[vii] Retiner, “Sauna Visits May Lower Sperm Count,” LiveScience, March 25, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By |2017-01-31T07:50:51-06:00January 22nd, 2017|General|

N-Acetyl Cysteine

Every cell in the human body needs and has the substance glutathione and it is often called the Master Antioxidant in the body.  Inside every cell, it acts to neutralize free radicals and prevent cellular damage.  Glutathione, unfortunately, does not effectively absorb as a supplement.  It is constructed from three amino acids, namely cysteine, glutamine and glycine.  N-Acetyl-Cysteine is the preferred precursor which, when supplied, allows the body to synthesize glutathione and serves to support the body, especially the liver, with detoxification. Poor diet, pollution, toxins, medications, stress, trauma, aging and infections can all deplete glutathione in the body.  Thus, supplements that can support the body’s ability to make more glutathione is often necessary. It has also been used for years to help treat asthma, lung disease, and to treat liver failure from Tylenol overdoses.

 

References:

Prothera, Inc. 2016 Patient Catalog, pg.15.

http://drhyman.com/blog/2010/05/12/what-is-glutathione-and-how-do-i-get-more-of-it/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By |2017-01-22T14:05:43-06:00January 22nd, 2017|General|

Toxin Blocks and Tackles

It is football season, so as I watch the players on the field blocking and tackling I cannot help but think about how that should be our attitude toward our toxic world. We need to block our exposure to as many toxins as possible and then tackle those that have already gained entrance to our body.

Fortunately, our body does have natural detoxification pathways which, when supported nutritionally and with supplements, are designed to detoxify routinely. In fact, every time you exhale, every time you sweat or use the bathroom or blow your nose, you are witnessing your body busy at the work with waste elimination. Yeah, I know, cleaning is never a pretty topic! Some chemicals have a very short half-life and are out of the body within 24 hours, while others hang around in your body for several decades!

So what are specifics? Where should you start? Well, let’s get the game started, kick off with some ways to Block, and then some ways to Tackle!

Block – Avoiding Toxins 

Buy Organic – A USDA certification ensures that produce or any ingredient has been grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms or ionizing radiation. Animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products do not take antibiotics or growth hormones.¹ While it would be optimal to eat organic 100% of the time, this may not be realistic for most or affordable for many, but any effort you can make to increase organic choices and avoid the most toxic (e.g., an apple) is a good step toward blocking incoming toxins and supporting the body’s natural detoxification process. A good resource is www.ewg.org to determine, for example, which fruits and vegetables are most commonly genetically modified and heavily covered in pesticides and which are not so you can make wise choices.

Avoid Plastics – avoid foods and beverages packaged in plastic, especially if you plan to heat them in the package. This especially applies to drinks, including water packaged in plastic as well as plastic storage and lunch type containers used to reheat food.  Most plastics made in America are made from natural gas²and are a source of many chemicals known as endocrine disrupters, substances which when taken into our body alter normal hormonal function. Every time these plastics are heated, whether in a hot car or in a microwave, they release more of the toxic chemicals. Better options include glass, ceramic dishware with lead-free glaze, stainless steel, cast iron, and food-grade silicone, all of which do not leach chemicals into your food. ³

Choose Body and Household products carefully –from toothpaste to deodorant, and household cleaners to laundry detergent, make every effort to choose clean products free of parabens, phthalates, perchloroethylene (PERC), triclosan, quarternary ammonium compounds (Quats), 2-Butoxyethanol, ammonia, chlorine, sodium hydroxide, triclocarban, retinyl palmitate, retinyl acetate, retinoic acid, retinol, retinyl palmitate, aerosol sprays, SPF above 50, Oxybenzone, added insect repellant, permanent hair dyes, formaldehyde, formalin toluene, dibutyl phthalate, petroleum distillates, fragrance, BHA, boric acid, sodium borate, PEG’s, polyethylene compounds, diethyl phthalate, coal tar, hydroquinone, lead, and toluene⁴,⁵. For a more complete list, see www.ewg.orgor shop in a health food store, or online with a reputable health oriented site. Our staff would be happy to offer name brands, stores, and website suggestions.

Filter Water – unfortunately, every year a surprising number of contaminants are found in our water supply. Many bottled and alkalized waters are tap water. There can be toxic chemical disinfection byproducts from the chlorine in water, as well as many pesticides, herbicides and pharmaceuticals found in the water supply. It is very important to choose a quality filtering system for the water you drink and if possible for the entire household for cleaning and bathing. Two good sources for information to consider when choosing filters can be found at www.mercola.com, or www.greenamerica.org.

Tackle – Helping Your Body Detoxify

Eat Real Whole Food, especially your Vegetables! -While the fats and proteins we eat help to create our cellular structure and build and repair the human body, carbohydrates, namely our plant foods are purposed to clean and detoxify the human body. Green vegetables (wheatgrass, kale, spinach, spirulina, chlorella, chard, arugula etc.), green teas, herbs, seaweed, fruits in general, lemons, oranges and limes, garlic, broccoli sprouts, mung beans, seeds, nuts and omega 3 oils from hemp, avocado, and olive oil all serve as natural detoxifiers, helping to provide antioxidants and water as well as stimulating production of enzymatic activity in the digestive tract. We are designed and wired for plant and animal food, not chemically laden, preserved and processed food product.

A Note on Two Specific Foods from Dr. McManus:

SALMON: It’s very important to distinguish the different species of salmon because Pacific (Alaskan) salmon is acceptable, whereas Atlantic (farmed) salmon is ONE OF THE MOST TOXIC FOODS YOU CAN EAT! Atlantic salmon is hearty and, therefore, easily farmed. Pacific salmon, however, is a different genus with 3 different species known as king salmon (aka Chinook), silver salmon (aka coho), and red salmon (aka sock-eye). The great majority of salmon at markets and restaurants is farmed Atlantic salmon. This is HIGHLY toxic due to the salmon being fed pesticide-laden grains. Don’t be fooled by fancy names.   “Scottish Salmon” may be Atlantic salmon farmed in Scotland. “Norwegian Salmon” may be Atlantic salmon farmed in Norway.

BUTTER: Butter is ubiquitous in the diet, so I felt that this is another food to be addressed. Toxins are stored in fat cells. Butter is cow fat extracted from the cows’ milk. When you eat butter, you are eating a heavy load of toxins (e.g. pesticides sprayed on the grains they are fed). The only butter that’s fit for human consumption, in my opinion, is butter, preferably organic, that’s made from grass fed cattle. You can find this at most grocery stores. A decent brand is KerryGold. Other available brands in this area (Whole Foods, Sprouts, Trader Joe’s) or online include Organic Valley Pastured Butter, Kalona Super Natural Organic Butter, Anchor Pure New Zealand Butter, or Purity Farms Organic Ghee.

Promote and Support your Detoxification Pathways- using exercise, massage, and infra-red sauna, as well as proper hydration serves to promote sweating, elimination and mucus formation. It is important that whatever detoxification efforts are made, it is best to start with cleaning up the diet, water, living environment and avoiding toxins. When you are ill is not the best time to try a detoxification program.

For more assistance with choosing cleansing foods, juicing, and detoxification programs, call or office to schedule an appointment to design a clean diet and program that is right for you. Also see our Supplement of the Month (PaleoCleanse) for some specific detoxification programs designed to meet your needs.

¹www.organic.org/home/faq

²http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=34&t=6

³ http://mightynest.com/learn/getting-started/healthy-living-guides/12-ways-to-avoid-toxins-in-the-kitchen

https://experiencelife.com/article/8-hidden-toxins-whats-lurking-in-your-cleaning-products/

http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/top-tips-for-safer-products/

By |2015-12-02T16:26:26-06:00November 30th, 2015|Articles, Ask Dr McManus, General, NANCY’S NUTRITIONAL NUGGET|

Methylene-Tetra-Hydro-huh?

By Dyvette Warren, PA-C

Edited by Mila McManus MD

MTHFR

Beginning in the womb, and throughout your life, your personal health and happiness, mental capabilities, and propensity for disease are heavily influenced by genetic as well as non-genetic factors, including DNA mutations, nutrition, exposure to microorganisms and toxins, stress, and other environmental conditions.

If you suffer with, or have a history of, migraines, depression, insomnia, anxiety, Alzheimer’s, chemical sensitivities, arthritis, pain, IBS(irritable bowel syndrome), heart disease, stroke, DVT(deep venous thrombosis, ie: blood clot), pulmonary embolism(blood clot in the lungs), side effects with hormones (e.g., birth control pills), miscarriages, autism, birth defects, failure to thrive, anemia, epilepsy, psychosis, ADD/ADHD, seizures, or take prescription medication, particularly those for cancer and autoimmune disorders, we highly recommend that you get tested for an MTHFR gene mutation. This is a piece of the healthcare puzzle that can be treated.

What does the MTHFR gene do?

MTHFR gene provides instruction for making an enzyme called methyl tetrahydrofolate reductase. This enzyme helps amino acids form proteins and influences detoxification efficiency and production of neurotransmitters. A mutated MTHFR gene produces defective enzymes that may perform only 20% – 70% as well as the non-mutated version, depending on the type of mutation.

You ability to effectively break down toxins and eliminate heavy metals, including copper, will be limited. High copper levels deplete zinc levels which can be related to ADHD, depression, headaches, acne, frequent colds, worsening thyroid function, sensitive skin, easy bruising, adrenal stress and more. High copper levels also make it difficult to raise iron levels. Supplementing with Vitamin C and Zinc can help to detoxify and reduce copper levels. Consult with your functional medicine specialist before starting supplements.

A high homocysteine level may develop with an MTHFR mutation, thereby increasing your risk for heart disease, blood clots, stroke, elevated blood pressure, dementia, psychosis, and seizures. A thorough history, along with MTHFR testing, is recommended if you have a high homocysteine level or a history of any of the above listed diseases.

With MTHFR mutation, homocysteine has a difficult time converting to glutathione, the body’s main detoxifier and antioxidant. This contributes to a buildup of toxins and heavy metals in the body.

Also with MTHFR mutation, your body will have reduced capability of converting the inactive forms of folate (folic acid) and B12(cobalamin) into active forms called methyl-folate and methyl-cobalamin.

The Journal of Molecular Psychiatry states that, “Schizophrenia-like syndromes, Bipolar disorder, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia have all been associated with one or more of the mutations of the MTHFR gene”.

It is likely that MTHFR DNA variation may affect the response to many different medications that affect brain function. Long term use of methotrexate, for example, is associated with elevated homocysteine levels and methotrexate toxicity in patients with MTHFR mutation. We recommend knowing your MTHFR status prior to starting any type of chemotherapy. Chemotherapy neurotoxicity is highly associated with MTHFR mutation. Proper supplementation and future treatment options will need to be discussed with your functional medicine specialist and oncologist once your MTHFR status is known.

Treatment

Although you can’t change this defective gene, you can help it do its job more effectively.

Repairing your digestive system, including optimizing your gut flora (ie blend of microbes in your gut), should be the first step in improving your health.

Methyl-cobalamin and methyl-folate are additional treatment which will be used by your body for detoxing. You may need to start with a low dose to avoid detox effects such as fatigue, muscle pain, headache, anxiety, insomnia, irritability, achiness, etc. Always consult with a functional medicine specialist prior to starting therapy. Click here to read about Active B-Complex by Prothera.

Avoid toxins, including those absorbed through the skin. Look at household cleaning supplies and wear gloves when using chemicals for cleaning. Check your lotions, soaps and deodorants. Use aluminum free deodorants, and use soaps and lotions with the fewest ingredients. We are now offering Pure & Simple Bar soap at our TWIHW facility and it’s just that! You can also visit http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ which is a database where you can discover what toxic chemicals are in your cosmetics, lotions, and sunscreen products.

Eat healthfully and organic when possible, avoid processed food, don’t smoke, and limit alcohol intake. These measures will help to decrease toxins in the body and will leave the methylation cycle free for other important functions.

There are more than 40 different MTHFR mutations that can be passed down from your mother and/or father. Only two of these are known to be particularly problematic: C677T and A1298C. You might also hear the words homozygous and heterozygous when discussing MTHFR mutations. Homozygous means that you inherited a mutation from your mother AND your father and, therefore, have both copies of the defective gene. Heterozygous means that you inherited the mutation from either your mother or your father and, therefore, have only one copy of the defective gene. If you already know that you have an MTHFR gene mutation, consider having your children’s status tested.

MTHFR testing is offered several ways at our facility (prices are subject to change):

  • Saliva test kit that you do yourself at home and mail into the lab. This test is $125 and tests for C677T and the A1298C mutations as well as for another mutation called COMT which is also associated with mood disorders and dementia.
  • Add-on test at Spectracell Laboratories when ordering a nutrient analysis. The add-on price is $40 and tests for C677T and A1298C.
  • MTHFR can also be ordered through Quest lab who will attempt to bill your insurance; however, we’ve found that many insurance companies will not cover the test and this would result in Quest billing you, the patient, ~$400.

 

References:
http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/mthfr/
http://mthfr.net/mthfr-research/2012/01/27/
BMS Neurology, Effect of MTHFR
US National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health
Genetics Home Reference, Your Guide to Understanding Genetic Conditions
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences
American Heart Association
Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery
Holisticprimarycare.net
New England Journal of Medicine
Journal of Human Genetics
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
By |2017-03-01T17:36:12-06:00November 4th, 2015|Articles, General|

Get a Squeaky Clean Start to the New Year- detox

detoxSo January has arrived fresh and new, brimming with possibilities for each of us.   Moving forward, putting the past behind us and seeking newness are inherently built into our minds as we move into a new year. Nutritionally, though, you may feel like you are lugging a bit of holiday jolly right along with you into the New Year and not feeling all too jolly about it now. For many it is added pounds, for others it is fatigue and poor digestion and for yet others it is a general malaise, or aches and pains. After all, these are often the effects of the extra indulgences of too much sugar, processed foods, food additives, alcohol, and overeating that are common during the holidays. As Dr. McManus focuses our main article this month on anti-depressants, it is worth noting that our food is a very common source of many anti-nutrients that contribute to depression. So what to do about it?

 How about letting your partners in wellness at TWIHW help you get back into gear for a great new year? Whether you want to get help re-vamping your diet, implementing a more formal detoxification program, participating in a weight loss program, finding accountability or starting out the year with a health and wellness check up where goals for your improved health can be identified, we can help!  With every one of these approaches, we can offer a multitude of steps that you can take to help detoxify the body employing a wide range of practices from 7 to 21 day detoxification programs, juicing, fasting, cleaning up the diet, utilizing supplements, and promoting weight loss. The good news is that there is a personal plan for you. Not everyone can fast, not everyone wants a strict diet and the same protocol is not right for everyone. Cleansing the body can be done through many avenues and in a way that is achievable for you.   Schedule your nutrition appointment today to start fresh, get clean, and feel great for the New Year!

By |2021-01-10T08:55:13-06:00January 2nd, 2015|General, NANCY’S NUTRITIONAL NUGGET|