Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Demographics for this article and statistics about rheumatoid arthritis for this article are taken from rheumatoidarthritis.org.

Demographics – rheumatoid arthritis affects women more than men, 3:1, 30 to 60 years of age, and is more likely if you have a family member who already has arthritis.

Symptoms – common symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are symmetrical joint pain, fatigue, malaise, fever, and joint destruction.

Allopathic diagnosis – allopathic diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis is based on three main factors: lab tests including positive rheumatoid factor, positive CCP, positive erythrocyte sedimentation rate, positive C-reactive protein, positive ANA, radiographs showing doing joint destruction, and positive physical diagnosis tests.

Allopathic treatment – allopathic treatment for arthritis generally involves four things. It involves nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, corticosteroids, disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, and surgery. Side effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs include liver damage, heart problems, upset stomach, and kidney damage. Side effects of corticosteroids are like swelling, weight gain, increased blood pressure, mood swings, diabetes, increased infection risk, and osteoporosis. Disease-modifying antirheumatic drug side effects include liver damage and increased risk for infection. Side effects of surgery include possible infection, irreversible changes in the body, and even death (rare, but a severe side-effect).

Natural treatment of patients with arthritis – natural treatment of patients with rheumatoid arthritis includes what we call a Triad approach. This means that we address structural issues, biochemical issues, and emotional issues.

Structural issues are addressed with chiropractic, massage, physiotherapy including rehabilitation exercises and exercise in general.

Biochemical issues of patients with rheumatoid arthritis include addressing gastrointestinal issues such as gastrointestinal function and food sensitivities as diagnosed by blood saliva or elimination, immune system issues such as chronic and stealth infections, hormonal issues such as thyroid and adrenal problems, and inflammation in general including the Cox two pathway.

Emotional issues with patients are dealt with in an effort to decrease stress hormones and inflammation in general. It includes addressing external factors, meaning factors affecting the patient from the outside, internal factors, what we call autosuggestion, stress hormones, lack of exercise, and stress reduction techniques such as meditation.

Results – using a triad approach to handling patients with rheumatoid arthritis addresses the three key areas that cause inflammation and joint destruction. Only by addressing these three areas can we get a truly holistic approach to dealing with patients with arthritis. In my own practice, I have seen that patients who deal with rheumatoid arthritis holistically have no side effects and are overall much happier with their care than they are with medical care for rheumatoid arthritis. Typical results are 60-80% improvement over 3-6 months as long as patients continue to adhere to their nutritional programs.

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A Triad Approach to Stress

Stress

Most people know that stress has a very bad effect on health. When we talk about de-stressing we conjure up images of meditation and yoga and chanting om and things like that. But to really recover from the effects of stress, we have to take what’s called a triad approach to stress. So what is a triad approach?

A triad approach is when we recognize that stress affects the body and is affected by three main sources. Those sources are structural problems, biochemical and nutritional problems, and emotional issues.

To deal with structural problems, we primarily use chiropractic, massage, and exercise, including specific rehabilitation exercises.

To deal with biochemical and nutritional issues, we recognize that stress causes organ dysfunctions and nutritional deficiencies as seen in our general talk on nutrition response testing. Stress specifically robs us of our B vitamins and vitamin C, our minerals especially calcium, magnesium, potassium and iodine; it raises stress hormones that adversely affect the adrenal, thyroid, and liver, and also affects the gastrointestinal tract and digestion, as well as suppressor immune function. All these issues must be dealt with with proper diet and nutritional supplementation.

Once we have dealt with the structural and biochemical issues of stress, emotional issues tend to be dealt with easier. Everybody knows that if you’re stressed out and anxious, hungry, tired and not sleeping, you’re going to have trouble dealing with emotional issues. But once we deal with structural issues such as pain, and biochemical issues mentioned above, stress becomes much easier to deal with. In fact, I found that not dealing with the structural and biochemical issues makes it so that emotional issues keep on coming up. I mean how are you supposed to feel good if you’re in constant pain? How are you supposed to feel good if you have a neurotransmitter deficiency in your brain is constantly sending out stress signals? These issues must be dealt with first.

The reason behind this can be explained by looking at stress as a subjective experience. This subjective experience of stress causes the body to release stress hormones such as cortisol and additionally has an impact on the brain, stimulating brain waves to speed up and cause what is called an acute stress state. This acute stress state causes further neurochemical changes that makes biochemical imbalances worse. To cool down this whole situation you work backwards. You handle the biochemical imbalances which takes stress off the brain. From there the brain wave pattern can change and stress hormones become lessened. This in turn decreases your subjective experience of stress so you can see life differently and as a result, you become freer to act and react differently.

Emotional issues can be broken up into two different areas, external factors, and their internal factors. External factors means things from the outside affecting us; such as job, family life, finances, and social media. Internal factors have to do with our views on things. We also call this autosuggestion. Basically, whether we think we can, or can’t, we are right. Whether we think we are a good person or a bad person, we are right. Whether we think we are deserving or undeserving, we are right. Basically, recognizing negative emotional patterns tends to bring them to light, and releases our pent-up energy from them. Recognizing external issues and internal issues is key. Once we recognize these issues, I usually tell people to develop a daily de-stressing routine. There basically two ways to do this. I find that most people do well with low-level aerobic exercise such as walking, especially while looking around at nature and focusing on the external, and meditation. On another talk I’ll go and more about the specifics of how to meditate for stress reduction. Both these things, low-level intensity exercise such as walking outside, and meditation, will lower stress hormones, so that we feel less stressed, and therefore react in a less stressful manner. People who want to destress, need to incorporate both techniques.

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Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Place whole head of cauliflower in a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Rub cauliflower with 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Add ½ cup water to the dish. Bake uncovered at 350° for 1 ½ hours, or until a knife cuts easily through the core. Remove cauliflower from oven and allow to cool. Coarsely chop and set aside. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft and translucent, about 15 minutes. Add cauliflower and 4 cups water or stock. Simmer until cauliflower is very soft, about 10 minutes. In a vitamix puree in very small batches until smooth. Transfer back to pot and bring to a simmer. Serve

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Multi “Grain” Crackers

Multi “Grain” Crackers

Pulse almond flour, macadamias and coconut flour in a food processor until well ground. Pulse in seeds, flax meal and salt until almost fully ground (leave a little texture for crunch). Pulse in shortening, then water; dough will form a ball in food processor. Roll out dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper to ¼ inch (or less) thick. Cut into 2-inch squares, 5 rows each way. Bake at 300° for 20 to 25 minutes (or dehydrate; haven’t tried so you will need to experiment). Serve

Makes about 25 crackers

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Paleo Banana Bread

Paleo Banana Bread

Place bananas, eggs, vanilla, honey and shortening in a food processor
Pulse ingredients together
Pulse in almond flour, salt and baking soda
Scoop batter into a greased 7.5 x 3.5 magic line loaf pan
Bake at 350° for 55-65 minutes
Remove from oven and allow to cool
Serve with Dandelion Root Coffee (optional)
Serves 12

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Silver Dollar Pancakes

Silver Dollar Pancakes

In a large bowl whisk together eggs, water, vanilla and agave. Add almond flour, salt and baking soda and mix until thoroughly combined. Heat grapeseed oil on skillet over medium low to medium heat. Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon of batter at a time onto the skillet. Pancakes will form little bubbles, when bubbles open, flip pancakes over and cook other side. Remove from heat to a plate. Repeat process with remaining batter, add more oil to skillet as needed

Yields 18 pancakes

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Banana Walnut Muffins

Banana Walnut Muffins

Place eggs, oil, bananas, dates and stevia in a vitamix ; blend on medium speed until combined. Add in coconut flour, salt and baking soda and blend until smooth. Fold in walnuts. Scoop ¼ cup batter into a lined 12 cup muffin pan. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes (my batch took exactly 23 minutes; all ovens are slightly different). Cool and serve

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Paleo Chocolate Chip Scones

Paleo Chocolate Chip Scones

In a food processor , combine coconut flour, salt and baking soda. Pulse in shortening, honey and eggs. Stir in chopped chocolate by hand. Scoop batter onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes. Cool and serve. Makes 6-8 scones

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Easy Meatloaf

Easy Meatloaf

  • 2 lbs lean ground beef
  • 6-8 oz Portobello mushroom caps
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup medium hot salsa
  • 1.5 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mince mushroom caps in a food processor until very fine. In a large bowl, stir together minced mushrooms, eggs, salsa, salt and pepper. If salsa is chunky, break up large pieces. Using your hands, thoroughly mix ground beef with mushroom mixture. In a shallow baking dish, form meat mixture into a loaf. Bake for 1 hour or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.

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Chicken with Herbed Cheese

Chicken with Herbed Cheese

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1/2 cup full-fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp minced parsley and chives or other herbs as desired
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp minced onion
  • 3 tbsp melted butter
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. With a sharp knife, cut a pocket in each chicken breast. In a small bowl, combine the cheese with the egg and mix thoroughly. Stir in the herbs, garlic and onion. Using a small spoon, stuff each breast with several tablespoons of the cheese mixture. Fasten with toothpicks if necessary. Season both sides with salt and pepper and arrange in a single layer in an oiled shallow roasting pan. Pour melted butter over the breasts. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Turn once when halfway done to brown both sides. Let chicken rest 5 minutes before serving.

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