Supplement of the Month: Botanicalm PM & Cerenity

This month we are introducing two supplements by Orthomolecular Products that we carry at TWIHW.

Botanicalm PM*is formulated to induce the relaxation needed to support better sleep for those experiencing temporary sleeplessness.  The formula includes valerian root, a well-known herb used to help with sleep-related issues and to produce a state of relaxation.  Passionflower and jujube have been used historically to produce a state of relaxation and have been used in those with overstimulation and scattered thoughts.  L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, supports resilience to stress by increasing alpha brain wave activity.  Hops strobile extract works in synergy with these ingredients to naturally reduce stress and induce sleep.

Cerenity* is designed to address daily stress by increasing production of the neurotransmitters serotonin and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain.  Neurotransmitters are the chemical messengers that regulate mood, memory, sleep cycle and daily stress.  High levels of stress, dietary deficiencies, genetic factors, medications and toxins all play a role in neurotransmitter depletion and imbalance.  The nutrients in Cerenity support healthy neurotransmitter levels for balancing the stress response.  L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, has been shown to quickly improve stress perception and resilience.  PharmaGABA, a patented and naturally sourced form of GABA, has been shown to promote relaxation in the central nervous system. 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid intermediate that is directly converted into the mood-regulating neurotransmitter serotonin.  Taurine is an amino acid that activates GABA receptors. Inositol is crucial for the release of neurotransmitters from within nerve cells.  The essential micronutrients included in Cerenity aid in the synthesis of serotonin and GABA.  The support of these neurotransmitters helps promote a relaxed mental state, positive outlook and restful sleep cycle.

 

*These statements have been provided from OrthoMolecular Products practitioner catalog. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

By |2018-03-25T11:51:36-05:00March 16th, 2018|General|

Foods that Promote Sleep

In every step of my life journey, one message resounds over and over again. What we eat really does matter. The optimal function of the human body is in every way dependent on our daily food choices. There is no question in my mind that when we don’t eat well, we are promoting dysfunction and disease rather than optimal function. Good nutrition applies to getting a good night’s sleep, too!  Read on to learn about foods that promote sleep.

There are a number of essential amino acids that the human body needs but cannot produce – the reason for being called “essential” is that we must consume them in our diet.  One such amino acid is called tryptophan. Tryptophan is the required building block for the human body to produce serotonin in the gut and central nervous system, which is then delivered to the pineal gland in the brain to produce and release melatonin, our natural regulator of the sleep cycle.

The goal is to promote sleep by promoting the production of serotonin and, therefore, melatonin by ensuring our diet is rich in tryptophan. Here are some tryptophan rich choices to consider, especially as the sun sets and you consume your last meal of the day.

  • Meats, especially wild game such as elk and venison, quail, duck, and turkey.
  • Seafood, especially halibut, shrimp, salmon, lobster, crab and crawfish.
  • Nuts and seeds, especially walnuts, cashews, almonds, pistachios, flaxseed, sesame seed, pumpkin seed and roasted sunflower seeds.
  • Beans and legumes, especially peanuts, kidney beans, lima beans and chickpeas.
  • Spinach, mustard greens, asparagus and winter squash.
  • Grains, especially brown rice and oats in very modest portions (1/2 cup or less). We do not recommend grains as your ‘go-to’ source of tryptophan.
  • Cheese, especially Gruyere and cottage cheese. We do not recommend cheese as your ‘go-to’ source of tryptophan either.

Most of these tryptophan rich food sources fall in line very well with TWIHW’s recommended dietary choices. We do recommend gluten free grain choices in modest portions to avoid excessive elevation of insulin levels as well as non-genetically modified (Non-GMO) foods and organic options wherever possible. Be aware of your food sensitiveness and allergies avoiding those foods to which you have an adverse reaction, which would keep you wide awake anyway to be sure!

It is also worthy of note that alcohol, dark chocolate, coffee, sugary foods, spicy foods and highly processed fatty foods are well known to interrupt a good night of sleep. Sugar is especially disruptive because it causes a dramatic rise in blood sugar which, when it drops later, will cause you to wake up. Additionally, excessive sugar floating in the blood during sleep is damaging in terms of inflammation, congestion, oxidative stress and fat storage.

What we eat will determine just how sweet your dreams can be!

 

 

 

By |2014-09-27T14:17:14-05:00September 27th, 2014|Articles, General, NANCY’S NUTRITIONAL NUGGET|

Sleep-Enhancing Supplements

Achieving quality sleep is fundamental to our level of health and wellness. While we realize there are exceptions to every rule and circumstances to consider, we do advise against prescription or over the counter sleep aids as a routine solution to insomnia. Rather, we want to explore the root causes of the problem and correct those areas whenever possible. Because there are many reasons for a reduction in serotonin/melatonin production related to aging, stress, digestive and lifestyle factors, we often use a variety of natural supplements to support imbalances and deficiencies that can disrupt sleep. It is important to remember, too, that supplementation needs to be consistent and given time to correct imbalances and deficiencies. This often requires a little more patience. With guidance and support from your healthcare provider, we recommend any of the following sleep-enhancing supplements, alone or in combination, to aid in improving sleep quality:

  • 5- HTP
  • L-Theanine
  • Magnesium
  • Melatonin
  • Stress Support Formula

These sleep-enhancing supplements are available at The Woodlands Institute.

Warning: Please consult a health care professional before using these products.

 

 

 

 

 

By |2014-10-01T05:55:18-05:00September 27th, 2014|Articles, General|

Insomnia-Causes and Treatment Options

Causes of Insomnia and Treatment Options to Help You Sleep

By Mila McManus MD

This article isn’t about obvious causes of insomnia, such as heartburn or chronic pain.  Its focus is on some causes of insomnia about which you may not realize, and some suggested treatment options.

Potential causes of insomnia:

  • Hormonal imbalance or deficiencies despite normal lab results. Symptoms matter as well. Click here to test yourself for hormonal imbalance and deficiencies, such as low thyroid, estrogen dominance, and low T.
  • Adrenal fatigue (another form of hormonal imbalance). Click here to test yourself for adrenal fatigue
  • Poor sleep hygiene (e.g. working in bed, watching TV in bed, trying to sleep with a nearby light on)
  • Shift work-if you work sometimes during the day and sometimes during the night time hours, this will cause disruption of your circadian rhythm (internal clock)
  • Certain medications, prescription or over-the-counter (e.g. ADD medications, decongestants, diet pills)
  • Neurotransmitter imbalance-these are chemicals in the brain. There are tests available to check for this
  • Stress (it makes everything worse, doesn’t it!)
  • Ambient temperature, mainly temperatures above 70 degrees, can affect your quality of sleep
  • Alcohol-while it may help you fall asleep, it affects your ability to stay asleep
  • Caffeine-some people are very sensitive and don’t realize that having a soda, iced tea, or coffee with lunch can affect their ability to get to sleep at night

Treatment options

  • Get your hormones balanced and optimized. Call 281-298-6742 today for help.
  • Avoid napping during the day-it confuses your internal clock
  • Turn off the TV, turn off your cell phone, and turn off ALL the lights
  • Avoid caffeine after 10am
  • Talk to your doctor about which medications you are taking may be affecting your sleep. Call 281-298-6742 or click here for us to contact you to learn about how we can help treat the underlying reasons why you need certain medications so that you aren’t dependent on them.
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Manage your stress! We all have stressors, but we don’t all react the same way to stressors. It may be impossible to rid yourself of stressors, so work on managing the stress. Some options would be meditation, deep breathing exercises, EFT, massages, yoga, bubble baths.

 

 

 

 

 

By |2014-10-01T05:54:19-05:00July 9th, 2014|Articles, General|

Healthy Tips on How NOT to Catch The Crud

We all hope it won’t happen to us, but somehow as late winter and early spring roll around, the bad germs and blooming plants abound and, before you know it, it seems like everyone around you has the flu or a cold or that mysterious thing that hangs on forever, lovingly called “The Crud”. Especially prevalent where people gather in larger numbers, office workers and school attendees are especially susceptible.  If you have been fortunate to avoid it so far this year, or you want to make sure you don’t get hit again, there are many things you can do wherever you are to minimize your risk of getting sick this time of year.  Here is a list of proactive things you can do to protect yourself:

Vitamin Vigilance – Now is an especially important time to be diligent about taking your vitamins.  We know that a multi-vitamin, probiotics, vitamin D, vitamin C, and Zinc are effective in supporting healthy living and boosting the immune system.

Allergy Awareness – If you know you struggle with environmental or food allergies, do your best to minimize exposure where possible and seek quality treatment for your allergies.  Left to fester, the relentless attack on the immune system and the resulting inflammation often leads to infection and illness.  Today, there are numerous effective treatments to minimize the effects of seasonal allergies and promote healthy living and immune function.  Call our office to speak to a wellness consultant about sublingual allergy drops!

Hand Hygiene – Our hands are useful and relentlessly busy, and this means they touch many surfaces and people throughout the day.  Unfortunately, we also eat with them, touch our noses and lips, and cough into them.  As a result, they are a major carrier of germs to and from other people and high-traffic surfaces.  Here are some easy health tips: Keep hands clean using soap and warm water or citric acid/essential oil-based anti-bacterial hand sanitizer.  Keep your hands away from your nose and mouth and never eat food with your bare hands without washing them well first.

Germ Gatherings – So where do these pesky little microbes tend to hang out together?  Most of us fear public toilet seats, but you may be surprised to know that studies have shown they are one of the cleaner surfaces found in public areas because restrooms are generally cleaned on a daily basis.  Do you work in a healthy workplace? The greatest populations of viruses and bacteria are found on surfaces that are used often, but not cleaned regularly.  The germiest include desktops, office break room tables, restaurant tables (the rags to wipe them are usually not sanitized after each wipe), phones, computer mice and keyboards, grocery cart handles, and escalator rails.  Cleaning your personal workspace daily, washing your hands after using others’ workspaces and encouraging others to do the same, are ways to minimize your exposure.  It is a good idea to carry an antibacterial hand sanitizer to use after coming in contact with grocery carts, escalator rails, and other heavily handled surfaces.

Sugar, Stress, and Sleep Shortages – These little devils seem to hang out together when life gets busy and deadlines are looming. We become overly stressed, we have less time for a good night’s sleep or some exercise to relax us so we reach for a sugary treat to comfort our frustration.  Unfortunately, we have created the perfect storm for a bacteria or virus to jump on board and do a happy dance on us.  During this germy season, it is the very best time and reason to make wise snack choices, get a quick walk in during the lunch hour and get to bed on time. Avoid reaching for the bowl of candy at the office or resorting to the donut in the break room. Sugar can suppress your immune system and impair your defenses against infectious disease. Instead, keep pre-packaged single serving nuts, small mandarin oranges, low sugar KIND bars, and herbal teas at your desk (or in the office bowl of treats) to provide good nutrition and comfort.  Take a few minutes every hour or so to stretch, stand up, and take a deep breath to reduce stress and move the body.  Use 15 minutes of your lunch break to walk up a couple flights of stairs and back or around the building outside.  Then when you get home, be sure to get a good night’s sleep.

Sit and Stay! –If you are sick, stay home.  If you are a manager, encourage your team members to do the same thing.  If you are a parent, keep your sick children home. There are no heroics in bringing germs to the office or schoolroom to share with everyone else.  Rest will also allow the body to heal more rapidly.

By |2014-02-18T21:52:59-06:00February 14th, 2014|Articles, General|
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