Dr. Laura: The Science of Eating a Rainbow

The colours that our foods employ are very functional and serve a purpose. Phytonutrients are vast and the last time I counted, there were over 5,000 known.

Allow me to introduce Dr. Deana Minich, MD. She has dedicated her career to express why, in scientific means, we should “eat” a rainbow. In the chart below she simplifies how different coloured foods serve our body.

image

What makes this even more interesting is that this chart also closely reflects the colours that relate to the energy centres of the body called chakras. This makes eating polyphenol rich foods easy to prescribe!

Eating a variety of vegetables and fruits is critical to good nutrition. Try 6 cups of vegetables a day and 1-3 cups of fruit per day. Choose foods for their vital nutrient function in ways that serve the needs of your body.

Plant Power!

Turns out, mother nature has packed a punch of power in the plant kingdom. Many plants contain one or more of these 5,000 nutritional perks that helps us:

  • Defend against pathogens, parasites, and predators.
  • Protect against chronic disease, including cardiovascular disease, neurodegeneration, and cancer.
  • Purify and renew the blood
  • Nourish
  • Cleanse body of toxins
  • Stimulate effects
  • Relaxing effects
  • Anti-inflammatory

So next time you are in the grocery store, hit the fresh produce aisle and think “Eat a Rainbow”! You just might find the gold that exists at the end of it…your good health.

From the heart and research of Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND.

Dr. Laura: Is Your Thyroid Tired ?

Perhaps your thyroid needs a check-up? It does if you feel sluggish, tired, constipated, have difficult concentration, and are a wee bit depressed.

Subclinical hypothyroidism is when a patient with sluggish digestion, cognition, fatigue and weight issues has a high TSH but normal T4. It is important to look at the reasons for the symptoms, which could have multiple causes, before reaching for the thyroid hormone replacement drug.

Don’t let the sunset on your thyroid…

What nutrients help the thyroid?

Nutrition is a factor. Consider levels of zinc, iodine, selenium and iron as they all play a role in thyroid function. B12 is also an important one to look at and easy to run the labs to determine its status.  Also the health of the gut microbiome and liver needs to be healthy as a large amount of the inactive T4 converts to the active T3 thyroid hormone in the liver and the gut. So many people have issues with the balance in their microbiome.  

Does stress play a role?

Another area of thyroid health to consider is the stress axis. This involves the hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal, or HPA. Chronic long term stress can make it difficult for optimal thyroid function. In addition to mineral level attention, it is highly important to support the adrenals and provide opportunities for stress management.  

Are there natural thyroid medications?

Finally, there are other options to synthetic thyroid. Natural desiccated thyroid (NDT) may be something to consider if diet and lifestyle changes don’t break through the fog. NDT provides both T4 and T3, which is good if there is an issue with conversion.

How can a naturopathic doctor help?

Naturopathic doctors are medical trained and naturally focussed. They can run labs for the nutrient levels, thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), T4, T3, and any antibodies to help rule out autoimmune thyroid disease. This helps determine what nutrients might be missing and what foods or nutraceutical dose to suggest and for how long. Naturopathic doctors with education in pharmaceuticals are able to prescribe natural desiccated thyroid. They are also very good at stress management and adrenal (HPA-axis) support with both nutrition, lifestyle and stress management programs.

Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND is a board certified naturopathic doctor with advanced training in pharmaceuticals, functional medicine and stress management. She is a Heart Math Certified Practitioner, a graduate of the Kresser Institute’s Adapt Level 1 functional medicine training and is a Certified Gluten Practitioner.

Naturopathic Medicine Week

Join us in celebrating the goodness in life!

Root Cause Medicine

Do you want to figure out the root cause of your problems?

Need to remove obstacles to health and support the body’s natural mechanisms of healing? Naturopathic medicine might be a good choice for you. Look below for the oath we take as naturopathic doctors. Learn about some of the extras Dr. Laura M.Brown, ND has under her wings of expertise and find out how to get the care you need.

Naturopathic Doctor’s Oath

I dedicate myself to the service of humanity as a practitioner of the art and science of naturopathic medicine.

By precept, education and example, I will assist and encourage others to strengthen their health, reduce risks for disease, and preserve the health of our planet for ourselves and future generations.

I will continually endeavour to improve my abilities.

I will conduct my life and practice of naturopathic medicine with integrity and freedom from prejudice.

I will keep confident what should not be divulged.

I will honour the principles of naturopathic medicine:

  • First to do no harm.
  • To co-operate with the healing power of nature.
  • To address the fundamental causes of disease.
  • To heal the whole person through individualize treatment.
  • To teach the principles of healthy living and preventative medicine.

Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND helps people better digest food and the world around them.


Certifications

Registered Naturopathic Doctor

Certified HeartMath® Practitioner

Certified Gluten Practitioner

ADAPT Trained Practitioner

Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND is a registered naturopathic doctor with a Functional Medicine approach.  She has advanced training in pharmaceuticals, is a certified HeartMath Practitioner and a Certified Gluten Practitioner  and holds the designation of ADAPT Trained Practitioner from Kresser Institute, the only Functional Medicine and ancestral health training company.

The Healing is Within

Your physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual aspects are wholly considered.

You will engage in skills that lead to long-lasting health and wellness.

Community Engagement

 Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND engages regularly in opportunities to speak and teach at various community events.

Need More to Feel Comfortable?

 www.naturalaura.ca

 ca.linkedin.com/in/laurambrown 

Book a 15 min free consult by calling 519.826.7973

Ready to Get Started?

Book Online Now

Dr. Laura’s Veggie Wraps

Veggie Wraps: Easy Quick and Simple Lunch

 The collard greens make great wraps, warm or cold.

Ingredients:

Sprouted Mung beans, cooked according to package.

Quinoa, cooked according to package

2 tbsp olive oil.

Collard leaf greens

Cooking Quinoa:

Generally quinoa needs twice the amount of water to cook. You bring it to a boil without the lid, then turn it down to a simmer, add the olive oil, cover the pot and give it 15 min or so.

Quinoa is high in protein and, for most, very easy to digest. Gluten free quinoa grown in Canada is available at Costco and most local grocery stores.

Cooking Mung Beans:

Sprouted mung beans should be rinsed in a sieve with water, placed in the pot and then covered with three times the amount of water than beans. Bring them to a boil with out the lid, then turn down and let simmer for about 30 minutes. Drain and rinse again.

Mung beans are a cooler neutral food with a sweet flavour. Mung beans detoxify, improve digestion and alleviate inflammation in the body. They are also useful in the treatment of edema (swelling) of the lower extremities, high blood pressure, impatience and restlessness. I found sprouted mung beans by the Sasha Bread Co. at Longo’s in Guelph, and they are commonly available at most local grocery stores.

The quinoa and mung beans may be mixed, then placed into small jars like the one pictured above. these can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days or frozen for up to a month. Easy to grab and go for lunch.

Collard Greens

Collard greens are a part of the cabbage family and therefore are helpful to detoxify. They help both phase I and II liver detoxification and provide a good source of fiber. It’s a dark leafy green so a good source of magnesium as well. Break off the end and eat it or tuck it up into the quinoa and mung bean mix and make your wrap. They can be eaten raw, or lightly steamed. To steam, rinse then place on a plate and put in microwave for 30 seconds.

Plastic Free Beeswax Wrap

I make wraps travel well in a beeswax dipped cotton cloth. It’s a bit sticky so it sticks when you fold it. Mine was a gift. I’ve seen them at Goodness Me! and Stone Store in Guelph, and also found a great recipe to make your own plastic free food wrap.

From the heart and kitchen of Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND

Dig into Digestion

First it must be absorbed

How does the body breaks down food?

What helps the nutrients become available?

What does it mean if you experience, pain, bloat, gas, constipation or diarrhea?

digestive_system

Dig into Digestion with Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND and get the facts on optimizing your health by paying attention to the signs and symptoms provided by your gastrointestinal tract.

Free Class! Register here

Goodness Me!

Wednesday, Oct 19th.

6:30-8:00pm

 

 

picture source: archivecnx.org

 

5 things you might not know about levels of toxins in your body.

 You will know if toxins are overflowing in your body if you experience things like frequent headaches, joint aches, bloating, digestive discomfort, diarrhea or constipation, multiple chemical of food sensitivities, rashes, irritability, fatigue, repeated injury, brain fog, or troubles concentrating.

c1 (397)

5 things you might not know

about levels of toxins in your body.

 

  1. Your body is constantly in a detox mode.  Your skin, lungs, kidneys, bowels, liver, and ability to self regulate emotions all contribute to detoxification.
  2. A baby born today has over 50-200 recognized toxins in their blood stream? Reports from Scientific American and University of Toronto.
  3. Drinking Alcohol adds to your toxic load. So could the pesticides on your food, the cosmetics you might use, renovations in home or office, cooking and freezing food in plastics, your daily commute, and the emotional stressors in your life.
  4. You can measure your levels of toxins with hair, urine and blood analysis.
  5. A naturopathic doctor can help you prioritize your actions and boost your body’s ability to naturally detoxify.

Download your Toxic Questionnaire here.

from the heart and mind of Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND

 

Muscle Cramps or Tension?

magnelevures

Do you experience muscle cramps or tension? This could be a sign of intra-cellular magnesium deficiency. Although there are many forms of magnesium on the market, not all are absorbed or do the same thing. For example, magnesium citrate is very good for loosening up the bowels. Magnesium oxalate is so tightly bound not much is readily absorbed. Magnesium bisglycinate is a pretty good form of capsule based magnesium that is useful for muscle tension.

An interesting and clinically effective product is Magnelevures, the only organically based magnesium on the market. It is procured through the Saccharomyces cerevisae strain of yeast. This is very healthy and uniquely provides the best bio-availability of magnesium on the market. Packaged in a synergistic formula with B vitamins and amino acids to additionally promote intestinal absorption, tissue utilization, and increase of intra-cellular magnesium stores.

Take one sachet of powder and add warm water and stir well.

Best if taken an hour away from other medications.

Magneluevures contains no glucose, fructose, lactose or saccharose.

Magnelevures is beneficial for maintenance of healthy bones and teeth, carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism, menstrual cramps, muscle cramps, and to promote a good night’s rest.

You may find Magnelevures in the naturopathic dispensary at Forward Health.  This information is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute or replace individual medical advice. If you wish to find out if this product is right and safe for you, please arrange a personalized medical plan with Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND.

Dr. Laura’s Secret to More Energy

7 things to help boost your energy!

 

LauraHappy

 

 

Your body loves Routine! Try to go to bed, wake up and eat at the same time each day. We are elements of this earth and are not only susceptible, but need to harmonize with the rhythms of nature.

Create something. It engages your mind and  your soul.

Let your food be your medicine! Eat lots of leafy greens and colourful vegetables, a few fruits (berries are superb), responsibly raised meat & fish, variety of nuts, seeds, whole grains and healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, flax seed oil & avocados.

Optimize your energy conversion: digestion, metabolism, circulation and other systems work to ensure proper nutrient absorption.  Efficient transformation of these raw materials into energy means more energy for you.

Exercise regularly. You don’t have to move mountains, just your body. Everyday. Multiple times a day.

Personalize your treatment plan. Understanding your story, timeline and individual physiology can help create a treatment plan that maximizes your energy and your health.

Encourage the Heart Research has shown that when we think about experiences that are warm and loving and positive, it changes our physiology for the better.

While this does not constitute individual medical advice, general guidelines for better health can certainly be engaged with your personalized treatment plan.

From the heart and research of Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND.

drlaura@forwardhealth.ca

How Does Acupuncture Work?

Acupuncture is a Traditional Chinese Medical therapy that has been in practice for over 2000 years. It treats imbalances in the body, mind & spirit and is very effective at reducing pain. So much so, there are doctors in China that use acupuncture as their sole form of pain block for things as critical as open heart surgery!

At Forward Health, Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND is licensed to provide acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Any ache or pain may be relieved by acupuncture, but so too are things like hot flushes, constipation, diarrhea, PMS, stress, anxiety, depression, urinary flow challenges, swelling, fibromyalgia, headache, insomnia, infertility and more.

Transforming Energy

Forward-Health-logo-web-tree-only

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) dates back to the Zhou Dynasty (700-1000 BC). The balance of Yin and Yang and the flow of Qi are very distinctive concepts in Chinese Medicine.

Energy is never lost or created, it is only changed from one form to another. In Chinese medicine, the solid matter is Yin and Yang the energetic or wave of motion.

Qi is the motive force behind all physiological processes.

Acupuncture helps move blood and Qi. If there is stagnation, there is congealment of blood. If there is too much energy flow, there is rising of Qi. The body, soul and spirit are in constant flux and it is the harmonious flow of energy from one form to another that makes us feel in sync.

Acupuncture helps you feel like yourself again.

The Five Elements are how the rhythm of our health cycles with the environmental impacts and aging process. Five elements are Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood. There are seasons, organs, body parts, senses and times that relate to each element.  Acupuncture accesses the channels of the body that relate to organs, nerves and brain centres.

Your symptoms and your pulse, tongue and disposition will help Dr. Laura formulate the best combination of points to relieve your pain, stress or fatigue. Typically it will take 6 weekly 30min session to re-align your being, however you can feel relief from the first appointment. Pain relief in sciatica, for example can last up to 5 days after a single treatment.

Stainless steel, single use needles are used in specific points on the body. Sometimes infra  red heat or electrostimulation is applied to the points to help intensify the healing process.

Acupuncture is increasingly recognized by mainstream medical professionals. Here is a short 1 minute video that WebMD put together for your interest.

From the heart and mind of your local naturopathic doctor, Dr. Laura M. Brown, ND.

Traditional Chinese medicine

Should You Work Out on an Empty Stomach?

Should You Work Out on an Empty Stomach

Blood flow isn’t the only issue here. Even if you wanted to knock out some plyo while macking on a Royale with cheese, your body has ways to actively sabotage your efforts, and it isn’t afraid to use them. It’s primary method of action: Your nervous system.

At the risk of over-generalizing, your nervous system has two sides. Your sympathetic nervous system is responsible for “fight or flight” functions. It kicks in when you’re under stress (e.g., during hard exercise), releasing a cascade of hormones such as epinephrine, norepinephrine, and cortisol that prime your body for action. Your parasympathetic nervous system, meanwhile, is in charge of your “rest and digest” functions. It’s also responsible for healing.

The problem is that when your sympathetic system kicks in, it shuts down your parasympathetic system, including anything that isn’t mission critical for the task at hand. Have you ever had to urinate when something stressful popped up, causing you to completely forget about your need to whiz? That’s your sympathetic nervous system in action, and it treats your digestive process the same way. Since the food in your stomach doesn’t provide an immediate survival benefit—and yes, your body assumes your life is at stake if you’re exerting yourself strenuously (why else would you do something like that?)— it hits the kill button on digestion to support your attempt to fight or flee. If you’re walking or cycling leisurely, you’re fine—you’ll continue to digest what you ate. But if the going gets tough, your digestion stops going. Whatever is in your tummy will just sit there—and you’ll probably feel it.

Don’t confuse exercising on an empty stomach with training in a fasted state. An empty stomach means you’ve given yourself enough time to adequately digest your food. That can be anywhere from 10 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the size of your meal. Being in a fasted state means you’ve gone without eating for somewhere on the order of 12 hours (typically overnight). At this point, your food has not only been digested, but the fuel it supplied has been largely depleted, leaving your blood sugar low and your liver glycogen wanting. In this situation, your metabolism shifts and you’re more prone to burn fat—but the benefit has more to do with athletic performance than weight loss.

Timing your pre-exercise feeding to avoid these conflicts is easy. The general rule is to wait 3 hours after a full, balanced meal. Wait 2 hours after a lighter meal where the nutritional balance is skewed toward carbs (e.g., half a turkey sandwich and a glass of juice). Wait 1 hour after a similarly carb-rich snack, such as a glass of chocolate milk. For anything less than an hour, keep your snack below 100 calories and focus on fast-absorbing carbs (e.g., half a banana).

Shared by Dr. Phil McAllister @ Forward Health

Thanks to beachbody.com