Tag Archives: functional medicine

Two Main Nutrients needed for the Brain.

Happy Monday Warriors!

I hope you all have had a wonderful October so far. It’s hard to believe it’s already 3/4 through the month!

Last month we talked about viruses that affect the function of the brain.  If you missed it, make sure you catch up, since viruses seem to be the hot topic this time of year!

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This week I wanted to talk with you guys about certain nutrients that are needed for your brain to function at its best.  If you’ve been following me for awhile, you might already know them and if not then WELCOME!  You will learn quite a bit about the brain if you stick around.

Today I want to not only talk about these nutrients, but talk about them in two different ways through Craniopathy Chiropractic and through Genetic Based Nutrition, because those are what I believe are the BEST ways to get these nutrients effectively.

Nutrient #1. OXYGEN. 

The brain uses three times as much oxygen as the muscles of the body do. It requires about 20% of the human bodies oxygen.  We know that oxygen is VITAL of course, but for the brain it allows for growth and healing to occur.  Our blood carries oxygen to the brain and is reliant on sufficient nitric oxide to do so. Oxygen comes from the lungs, in particular the lower part of the lugs that hold the most red blood cells to accept more oxygen.

The BEST way to get the most amount of oxygen is to breathe through your nose and fully expand your diaphragm. This will actually enable you to get that lower part of your lungs so the blood can carry it back up into the brain. 
Oxygen depletion is the #1 thing that I focus on in my practice.  This being because if your brain doesn’t have enough oxygen, you will constantly be chasing what is going on in your body.  Whether pain, infections, or proper nutrition.  It doesn’t matter how much good nutrition tips you get, how much water you drink or how much you exercise, if you aren’t getting oxygen up there… You won’t heal.

HOW DO I ASSESS?
Through the cranial system of course!  There is a specific rhythm that the bones of the head go through.  This rhythm is super important for blood to flow in and out of your brain, and oxygen to enter.  When there is tension in this system, this means that this rhythm will be disrupted.  Tension is this system also means a difficult time breathing correctly in and out of the nose.  Some individuals find it hard at all to nasal breath, and when that is the case, there is severe tension within the head impacting the sinuses.  Don’t just go running to the ENT, most of what I find is that the cranial system as A whole is the problem, not the sinuses.
Remember, the only way to access that nitric oxide is to nasal breathe!  Time and time again, patient after patient will leave my office saying OMG I can BREATHE!  It’s amazing how much your mood even changes when you are properly oxygenated. 
This is why children and adults have temper and mood issues when they have sleep apnea or are mouth breathers.  It affects how your brain functions! 

The oxygen level also impacts the health of your lymphatic system in your brain, so if you aren’t properly oxygenated, you can have toxins build up in your brain and cause severe inflammation.  

HOW DO YOU GET MORE OXYGEN THROUGH NUTRITION?!

You can also enhance your oxygen levels by enhancing the nitric oxide cycle through nutrition. Nitric oxide helps vasodilate (meaning expand) blood vessels to allow for more oxygen.  However, for some, their genetic profiles don’t allow nitric oxide to be formulated effectively.  Because of specific mutations and because this pathway is extremely sensitive to radiation and free radical damage, the cycle can get compromised, meaning less oxygen available.  Not having enough nitric oxide can be very damaging neurologically to the body as well.  You see, just like your brain, your nerves also need oxygen.  Without it, they don’t function as well.
Finding out if your nitric oxide cycle is compromised can be found through specific kinesiology genetic testing (which I do).  When we know that this is a player, the customized nutrition will help to overcome this obstacle and allow you to get more oxygen!  Pretty cool right?

Nutrient #2.  Energy (glucose & ATP). 

Energy. The brain utilizes more energy than ANY other organ.  I mean think about all that is has to do right?
The brain and body need actual ENERGY made from within called ATP.  This is needed for every single cell of our body to do what it needs to do.  If we don’t have enough ATP, our brain and body will be depleted.  WE also get energy from another source: glucose.  What’s the big organ for glucose production? The Liver. 
The liver supplies sugar or glucose by turning stored glucose (glycogen) into glucose! It can also make glucose by harvesting amino acids, waste products and fat by products! Another reason to love that liver!

So we must have a robust and healthy liver to actually supply the energy (glucose) needed to our brain. Yet another organ our brain relies upon.  The first if you remember were the lungs.

Body wise, we need make sure the liver is moving... All organs MOVE, and need movement to do what they need to do.  So just like the brain needed to have proper movement for blood flow to happen, the other organs as well need proper flow and mobility.

HOW DO WE GET IT TO MOVE?
Through body work!  Working on the nerves that control the liver are key to make sure it knows what to do!  So enhancing the spinal areas related to the liver are key through chiropractic manipulation.  Also doing reflex techniques to get the liver and gallbladder working more affectively through abdominal work is really helpful to get them moving!
Lastly, the liver is a big source of emotional stress, so if this is the case, you must uncover and start to heal from those emotional wounds so that the liver can do what it needs to!  Emotional wounds cause physical problems too!

HOW DO WE GET BETTER ENERGY THROUGH NUTRITION?!

This is one of the FIRST and biggest impact pathways we focus on first with genetic nutrition.  This being because if you don’t have enough energy, you can’t even begin to work on other genetic factors like MTHFR and others(HUGE mistake made by many who do genetic testing).  Getting your body to make more ATP and to make and enhance your liver and glucose is really impactful!  Many on my genetic protocols will say even after a week that their energy is amazing!  We don’t have to give them extra energy help or adrenal supports, their own bodies make the energy they need!
Any why are they happier?
Because their brain is happier.  It has the energy it needs to do what it needs to!
And, your liver is happier too.  Which means detox pathways, hormones and other systems will work more efficiently!
A couple genetic variants I see when this is really impacted is the NDUFS gene and the ACAT gene mutations.  Take care of those and the rest of the energy pathway will clear and be happy:)

So there you have it folks.  Oxygen and Energy.  If you give your brain these two, it will work for you the way you need it to and in a much HEALTHIER more EFFICIENT way.

Questions?
Ask Away!

That is all for now.

Dr. Hamel DC.

The genetic variations for ENERGY, who doesn’t need more energy?!

Happy Monday Tribe!

We are switching it up a lttle as there was no blog last week!  (Thank you for all the birthday wishes, you guys are THE BEST).

Last month we talked ALOT about the illusions of the nervous system, and ways to heal specific nerves.  If you missed any of them make sure you check out my blog online to recap, there was SOME REALLY great nuggets in there.  Especially the bit about cranial nerves!

Check it here:
http://www.drrachelhamel.com/blog-post/supercharging-your-cranial-nerves/

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This week we are shifting gears a little to talk more about genes and nutrition.  A few weeks ago I told you about the genetic mutation VDR for vitamin D and how it is SO important for the immune system, mood regulation and other. 

Before I go into more, let’s recap about genetics and nutrition for you new comers.  When looking into genes for nutrition this is what we are looking for:  enzymes.  The enzymes will either speed up or slow down a process.  Two things can happen.  You either have a homozygous gene (one from mom and dad), or heterozygous gene (one from either mom OR dad).  Each variant will inhibit the pathway its under by either 80%(homo) or 30% (hetero).  That’s a big deal!

We can’t change the genes, but we can change the way they express, and the more genetic mutations in a certain pathway, the more hindered that pathway will be.

This week I want to BRIEFLY talk about the energy pathway.  I say briefly because the energy pathways has dozens of different genes that can affect it.  I’m just going to be talking about a couple in the pathway that I see pretty commonly, and how it affects so many things, but really your ENERGY!

Who doesn’t need more energy??? Ya, I thought so.  I’m with ya there friends! 

Now, if I sent you the entire pathway of energy, your head might explode.  Ok not really, but there’s ALOT going on and a lot of you will have nightmares of your high school or college chemistry days! Or maybe some of you nerds like me will LOVE IT!

Don’t worry, I’m not going to go into it all.  I’m just going to attach a snipet here of the particular pathway we are talking about.

So the section that says #1 and #2, we are going to focus on those two areas!!
Some of you may or may not remember in those chemistry classes learning about the Krebs (or citric acid) cycle.  It’s basically the Energy Cycle.  The goal is to create something called ATP.  ATP= ENERGY, cellular energy.

ATP transports chemical energy within cells for metabolism.  It is used by enzymes and proteins in many many cellular processes that need to take place. 

Lack of ATP?

Causes issues with a build up of an amino acid called methionine and adverse response to methylated forms of supplements.  It also can result in anxiety and inflammation from high levels of glutamate.

In order to make energy which is the goal of this whole process, the ATP must be generated from something called the electron transport chain and all the processes above it.

So Let’s look at the first genetic variant NDUFS by the number 1. This gene is involved with the making of lipoic acid. Lipoic acid is needed for the electron transport chain to work and create that ATP!

This genetic mutation may be associated with: lethal neonatal disease, adult onset neurodegenerative disorders, macrocephaly with progressive leukodystrophy, encephalopathy, hypertrophic or cardiomyopathy, myopathy, liver disease, optic neuropathy, and some forms of parkinson’s disease.

Health risks:
Fatigue!!
Exercise intolerance
Weight gain
Leigh Syndrome
Neurological imbalances
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Encephalopathy (maybe a reason why children get encepahology from vaccines, they can’t utilize this pathwayto clear the toxins??)
Myopathy
Liver disease
Optic neuropathy
Parkinson’s disease.

WOW right.  This is just one genetic mutation.

I should say all this info is from scientific studies on these specific genes.  We are learning more and more everyday!

So, a decrease in energy because of this ONE gene can lead up to a list of possible risks!

Let’s check out the area #2. Gene called SLC22A4, 5. 
This gene provides instructions for making a protein found in the heart, liver, muscles, kidneys and other tissue.  This protein is within the cell membrane, where it transports something called carnitine into the cell. 
Carnitine is consumed in our diet and needed to bring fatty acids into mitochondria, the energy producers in cells.  They make the ATP.

Fatty acids are a major source of energy for the heart and the muscles.  What about fasting?
During fasting, fatty acids are also an important energy source for the liver and other tissues.
With this mutation there is a shortage of carnitine within the cells.  Without this, fatty acids cannot enter mitochondria and be used to make ENERGY!

Reduced energy?
Muscle weakness and hypoglycemia.  It’s critical for elimination of many drugs and environmental toxins as well!

A buildup of this causes other symptoms:
– muscle weakness
-crohns disease
-rheumatoid arthritis
-carnitine deficiency
-fatigue
-exercise intolerance
-plaque psoriasis.

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So we’ve only gone over 2 genes.  Do you see how this can be complicated?!  Good thing is you don’t have to know it all, you just need to see someone that does!

What I am tending to find with this work is that especially for this cycle (there’s more involved here), that the chronic fatigue energy people, have a lot going on in this pathway. 

The people that always need adrenal support or energy support, coffee/tea.  
Yep, those peops. 

Instead of just giving energy supplements, you need to look at why the energy (ATP), isn’t really working!  A good portion is because of these two genetic mutations.

Through specific nutrients we can help these pathways clear up and get that energy pumping better! 

Because like I said, who doesn’t want more energy?!

Want more info!?
Schedule a genetic nutrition appointment today!
www.drrachelhamel.com or 8587755138.

OIL OF THE WEEK

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Summer Savory essential oil contains relatively high concentrations of carvacrol, a chemical constituent found in Thyme and Oregano essential oils. However, unlike Thyme and Oregano, Summer Savory also has significant concentrations of gamma-terpinene. Carvacrol, a monoterpene phenol, has been extensively studied for its therapeutic benefits in the body. Due to their chemistry, phenols have been known to exhibit protective effects against environmental threats.

An Essential Oil for Digestive Support

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That is all for now,

Have a happy and healthy week!

 

Dr. Hamel