Spinal stenosis is when space somewhere along or within the spine begins to narrow, closing off the ability of normal/comfortable movement and nerve circulation. It…
The gut has a significant impact on the rest of the body systems. Research has shown an overlap in risk profiles when assessing the gut and its connection to the other human body systems. For example, the chronic health conditions linked to gut dysfunction are eczema, leaky gut, brain fog, headaches, inflammation, swelling, and an abundance more.Â
The human gut is flooded with pathogens and bacteria. These gut pathogens are essential for health and proper function. The bacteria that infest the gastrointestinal tract is combined with both positive and negative commensals. The digestive tract associated with these microbes is known as the gut microbiome. The gut microbiome has an essential role in disease and overall health. There are over 1000 microbial species living within the gut.Â
The growth and involvement of the human microbiome begin at birth. An infant does not have many pathogens. However, at birth, they are quickly colonized. As infants pass through the mother’s birth canal, they are exposed to the mother’s microbiome. This process heavily influences the child’s intestinal flora. Infants who were born via cesarean section showed a reduced number of microbes by the age of just one month.Â
Additionally, the human microbiome contains genes that are linked to metabolic processes. The bacteria in the human gut produce essential nutrients such as vitamins and hold a high responsibility to synthesize amino acids. The lining of the gut consists of tight junctions. Over time, these tight junctions can become irritated if the bacteria is off balance or food is not being digested properly. When food becomes an irritant, it causes the body to create additional inflammation. The undigested food particles then begin leaking out of the gut, back into the bloodstream.Â
Inflammatory Pathways Impacted By Gut HealthÂ
The intestinal epithelium layer is the main component separating the immune system and the external environment. Cells alert threats from pathogens by signaling the immune system through receptors that are associated with specific bacteria in the gut. These responses lead to the release of peptides, cytokines, and white blood cells. These responses can even trigger cell death.Â
The gut-brain axis is communication that relies on neural, hormonal, and immunological signaling. This communication is directly related, and stress has been shown to influence the integrity of the gut and its production, ultimately leading to changes in metabolism.Â
IBS is abdominal pain or discomfort associated with inflammation and changes in gut habits. Those who have higher bad bacteria levels in their gut suffer from more inflammation and side effects associated with IBS.Â
Inflammatory pathways can disrupt many body functions. Some have been linked to metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes. Although type 2 diabetes is a complex disorder influenced by genetic and environmental factors, it may also involve the composition of the intestinal microbiota.Â
Gut Health and The Musculo-Skeletal SystemÂ
As previously stated, the gut microbiota is now recognized as a major contributor to health-related issues of the host. With imbalanced microbiota (associated with undernutrition, inflammatory and metabolic diseases, etc.), we see the influence of skeletal muscle and how it is impacted in relation to growth, performance, aging, and chronic diseases.Â
Conversely, microbial imbalance alters the intestinal barrier (leaky gut), allowing the passage of endotoxins (like undigested food particles and lipopolysaccharides). These endotoxins trigger innate immunity, leading to low-grade inflammation and, as a consequence, muscular disorders.Â
Additionally, we see muscle loss and weakness linked to increased morbidity and mortality recently related to systemic inflammation.
Chiropractic can be defined as “a system of healthcare which is based on the belief that the nervous system is the most important determinant of a person’s state of health.” Chiropractic treatments include the manipulation of the spine. With the manipulation of the spine, digestive disorders have seen improvement. Regular chiropractic visits are also shown to help decrease overall inflammation. Â
Considering the topic of inflammation, the use of the InBody 770 provides an ECW/TBW ratio. This ratio considers science down to the orthomolecular level and is an inflammation indicator. Additionally, the InBody 770 report shows a breakdown of the water in each limb. This chart is helpful in understanding and pinpointing where inflammation is occurring. Additionally, we use the InBody 770 to see a patient’s SMM (skeletal muscle mass), body fat mass, percent body fat, visceral fat (a risk factor indication related to heart attack, stroke, and type two diabetes), and phase angle. The video below provides more information on how a BIA analysis works to provide this information.
Ways To Help Your GutÂ
THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO IMPROVE GUT HEALTH AND REDUCE INFLAMMATION. I HIGHLY RECOMMENDED HAVING LAB TESTING DONE TO TEST YOUR MICROBIOTA AND SEE WHAT STRAIN STRENGTH AND TYPE OF PROBIOTICS WILL HELP YOUR BACTERIA. ASIDE FROM THAT, EATING FERMENTED FOODS AND AVOIDING INFLAMMATORY TRIGGERS WILL REDUCE INFLAMMATION AS WELL. ANOTHER TEST I RECOMMENDED IS A FOOD SENSITIVITY TEST. THIS TEST WILL SHOW WHAT FOODS YOU ARE HAVING REACTIONS TO, AND THE SEVERITY OF THE DAMAGE CAUSED EACH TIME YOU INGEST THEM. -KENNA VAUGHN, ACSM-CEP, SENIOR HEALTH COACHÂ
Sample reports for both of these tests are shown below:Â
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Bull, M. J., & Plummer, N. T. (2014). Part 1: The Human Gut Microbiome in Health and Disease. Integrative medicine (Encinitas, Calif.), 13(6), 17â€“22. Â
Gizard, F., Fernandez, A., & De Vadder, F. (2020). Interactions between gut microbiota and skeletal muscle. Nutrition and metabolic insights, 13, 1178638820980490. doi.org/10.1177/1178638820980490Â
Segen JC. Dictionary of alternative medicine. Stamford: Appleton and Lange; 1998.Â Â
Mercury is a metal that used to be used in common fixes. However, over the years we are seeing that this metal is causing detrimental effects on our bodies. Mercury toxicity mimics many health challenges.Â
Mercury + NervesÂ
Mercury has been know to denervate nerve fibers. This is similar to the pathology of multiple sclerosis. Mercury can cause the nerves to not work properly. Our nerves are essential for proper function. The nervous system is related to every single thing we do. Additionally, mercury is able to leak into the blood-brain barrier and reduce nerve conduction. Mercury has also been shown to create peripheral neuropathy, auto-immunity, and interferes with synapse transmission, decreasing infection control so the unsuspecting victim gets recurrent sinusitis, prostate, or gum infections, as examples. Lastly, mercury toxicity can create any baffling neurologic disease as well as impair cure for any disease of other body systems.
Mercury + HormonesÂ
Hormones are another essential part of our daily life. Our hormones are released not only when we are happy or sad, but when we need to control essential functions in the body. Hormones signal other body systems to release chemicals. Mercury can inhibit the action of happy hormones, such as serotonin. It inhibits the binding at the synapse where the nerve connects to another nerve to pass along signals, ultimately leading to depression. Additionally, mercury can decrease norepinephrine and dopamine activity at synapses, damaging our molecules of emotion. This can make a person lack zip, enthusiasm, joy, and creativity and make him anxious, insomniac, and terribly tense.
Mercury + Other FactorsÂ
When we see someone who is suffering from mercury toxicity, they often complain of terrible body burning and baffling pain that migrates throughout. When our patients come to us saying that they have been resistant to other treatments, we check for mercury because the toxicity could be the underlying root of issues for them.
Scientists have been researching and discovering the relationship between genes and our environment. More specifically, how our genetic background and susceptibility influence our outcomes. Specifically in the study by Andreoli, the genomic sequence and mercury-related outcomes.Â
â€œGENETIC VARIANTS, ENVIRONMENTAL RISK FACTORS AND DIFFERENT PERSONAL STRESSORS MAY INTERACT TO SHAPE THE REPERCUSSIONS OF MERCURY ON HUMAN HEALTH.â€- ANDREOLI, VÂ
We know that the human genome is comprised of millions of DNA sequence variants. There are gene-environment links focused on SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) that play a role in mercury actions and outcomes.Â
One thing we do at our clinic for all our patients is run an InBody scan. While this scan does not check for mercury toxicity, it does check for visceral fat. Visceral fat is the layer of fat surrounding one’s organs. If the level of this fat is high, the individual is more susceptible to underlying health conditions and inflammation. Underlying health conditions, inflammation, and mercury toxicity is a recipe for disaster. Below is a video demonstrating more in detail what the InBody 770 (the machine we use at our clinic) is capable of.Â
IT IS AMAZING HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE FILLINGS IN THEIR MOUTH THAT LED TO MERCURY TOXICITY. EVERY TIME SOMEONE EATS, DRINKS COFFEE, OR HAS AN ITEM THAT SCRAPS THESE FILLINGS, SMALL PARTICLES ARE RELEASED INTO THE BODY AND BLOODSTREAM. IF ANY OF THESE SYMPTOMS SEEM FAMILIAR TO YOU, I HIGHLY SUGGEST CONTACTING YOUR DENTIST TO SEE IF THE FILLINGS IN YOUR MOUTH CONTAIN MERCURY. -KENNA VAUGHN, SENIOR HEALTH COACHÂ
Andreoli, V., & Sprovieri, F. (2017). Genetic Aspects of Susceptibility to Mercury Toxicity: An Overview. International journal of environmental research and public health, 14(1), 93. doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14010093 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5295343/Â
Dooley, Bruce. M.D. â€œ551B: Mercurialism : Finding and Eliminating the Hidden Beast.â€ FunctionalMedicineUniversity. 12Â Feb. 2021.Â
Rogers SA, Detoxify or Die, Prestige Publishing, Syracuse NY, 2002. www.functionalmedicineuniversity.com/public/903.cfm
Additional Online Links & Resources (Available 24/7)â€¨â€¨
Online Appointments or Consultations: Â https://bit.ly/Book-Online-Appointmentâ€¨â€¨
Online Physical Injury / Accident Intake Form: bit.ly/Fill-Out-Your-Online-Historyâ€¨â€¨
Online Functional Medicine Assessment: bit.ly/functionmed
The information herein is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional. Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the musculoskeletal systemâ€™s injuries or disorders. Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. Â Read Moreâ€¦
Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, CTG*
Licensed in Texas & New Mexico
Part of natural healing and using functional medicine as an approach to discover the underlying reasons for health conditions involves evaluating possible causes. To find what is causing a patient’s hypertension, functional practitioners need to consider:
Mercury toxic exposure
Fatty acid imbalanceÂ
For an individual who is experiencing insulin resistance, the body’s cells have a lack of ability to respond to the action of insulin. Insulin is a hormone that removes glucose from the body and places it into our cells. Type 2 diabetes in certain families has been linked to a genetic background but we are finding that environmental factors truly unmask the genes.Â
To test genotypes, we use DNA Health from DNA Life. This report shows us the genetic makeup an individual has as well as their risk factors for certain health conditions.
Osteoporosis is a disease process based on stem cell and immunological dysfunction and it is where this dysfunction collides with energy regulatory mechanisms leading to weak and brittle bones. The skeleton is a large block of calcium that the body taps into to survive. This leaves the skeleton depleted of essential nutrients if not properly maintained. One thing that is important is to work on skeletal health from a metabolic level.
One of the best ways to reduce your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, or slow down the progression/reverse a diagnosis is to start with reducing inflammation. This is done by starting in the kitchen. Evaluate diet first. We should be eating clean locally sourced organic foods to fuel our cells and alter our genetic expression in a positive way. By eating pizza and chips we are adding fuel to the inflammation fire and throwing constant reactors at our genes, altering their expression to be pro-inflammatory rather than anti-inflammatory.
A neurotransmitter is a chemical messenger that regulates physical processes. Neurotransmitters are responsible for movement, pain, stress, emotions, cognition, energy, cravings, and more. Neurotransmitters imbalances are not only found in the brain but they are excreted outside of the Central Nervous System as well. Neurotransmitters play a role in influencing our digestion, nutrient absorption and impact our musculoskeletal system. When neurotransmitters are off-balance, individuals experience headaches, mood swings, anxiety, fatigue, pain, and depression. Using diagnostic lab technology, we have the ability to test our patients for neurotransmitter deficiencies.
The food we eat and our lifestyle as a whole has drastically changed over the past 100 years. Inflammation and chronic diseases are on the rise and nutrition is heavily responsible. The Wahls Protocol is a diet designed to improve health and reduce inflammation. The Wahls Protocol includes 3 cups of leafy greens, 3 cups of colored fruits and vegetables, and 3 cups of sulfur-rich vegetables per day along with cutting out foods containing gluten, white flour, sugar, dairy, and removing toxins. Remember, we are what we eat!
Cancer is when a group of cells begin to grow out of hand. Cellular apoptosis or cell death does not occur as frequently as needed. Some natural steps you can take to reduce your risk of cancer is to 1) control inflammation by following an anti-inflammatory diet 2) get rid of all excess toxins. Check your cleaning products and detergents for toxins that may be adding unnecessary chemicals to your body 3) continue with regular check-ups to your physician and getting blood work done when needed 4) Maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine.
Food sensitivities are becoming more common as the food we eat is being produced differently. Many of us have food sensitivities that we are unaware of! These food sensitivities can have delayed symptoms, showing up after 72 hours after being ingested. Food sensitivities cause inflammation and could be the underlying cause of many other health conditions you feel. We work with Cyrex laboratories to test patients for food sensitivities and create a personalized diet plan to help you avoid these inflammatory responses.
What is the intestinal barrier and why is it important?
The intestinal barrier is our first line of defense when fighting off unwanted pathogens. The intestinal barrier needs to be functioning properly to ensure optimal GI health and immunity. Testing the intestinal barrier will allow us to see the extent of gut dysbiosis as well as food sensitivities. From here, we can begin to remove the irritants, create a personalized plan, and restore optimal gut health and function!