Autoimmune Disease & You

ImpressionDid you know that Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition?

Did you also know that autoimmune diseases are on the rise?

In fact, statistically, if you’ve already been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, your chance of acquiring two or three more is extremely high.

Kind of sobering, isn’t it?

By its very definition, autoimmune disease means that your body – specifically your immune system – is attacking YOU.

It isn’t something that’s supposed to happen.

(And doesn’t, as long as your immune system is functioning properly).

But right now, we’re actually in the midst of an autoimmune epidemic – that’s how common autoimmune diseases have become.

Yet, here’s something else that might surprise you:

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Is Removing Gluten Always The Answer?

Celiac Disease concept. Book with stethoscope and pills.Should you remove gluten from your diet? (I get asked this question a lot).

The short answer is “It depends”.

What do I mean by this? In a nutshell, it depends on what’s going on in your body.

It depends on the signs and symptoms you’re experiencing.

And it also depends on your test results!

Of course, if your tests come back negative, then you’re in the clear – at least for the time being – more on that later.

But it’s super important that you get the RIGHT tests!

You don’t want to stop there, either.

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The Environment & Your Symptoms – Is There A Mismatch?

The Nursery toy, gas mask, old watch on white background.10,000 years.

Does that seem like an eternity to you? If so, you’re not alone.

Yet, 10,000 years is the number most often quoted by doctors, scientists and other experts, when explaining why grains – especially wheat – are a relatively new addition to the human diet.

You might be thinking, “How can that be? Haven’t humans been eating grains for most of their existence?”

How can something so abundant, and so integral to your diet, be harmful?

It’s what we call an ‘evolutionary mismatch’.

In other words, much of our modern lifestyle is based on products and foodstuffs that the human body isn’t designed to digest or otherwise process.

This includes chemicals and a host of other modern ‘conveniences’ that, in the long run, do us more harm than good – even though societies have seemingly thrived on grains for thousands of years.

That said, there’s a lot of talk in the media these days about threats to the environment, and whether the EPA will survive our current political climate.

Without getting overly dramatic – or political – about this state of affairs, here are some simple steps you can take to protect your health.

Starting today!

 

Knowledge is Power

What if government oversight of the environment and our food supply were to disappear overnight? What then?

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Introducing: A Gluten Primer – Everything You Wanted to Know From A-Z!

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Do You Have Street Smarts?

Always Seek Knowledge AcronymWhen it comes to managing your special diet – do you have “Street Smarts”?

You might be wondering what I mean by this.

While not always easy to come by, Street Smarts means knowing how to handle just about any situation that comes along – especially when you find yourself tempted to stray.

It means knowing that when you’re harried and frustrated by circumstances beyond your control – or, well meaning folks who don’t seem to understand or care – you’re able to make an informed choice because you understand the long-term damage that can result from that one exposure, however small.

My newly released video series A Gluten Primer – Everything You Wanted to Know From A-Z explains well, literally everything – in a collection of 26-videos plus a 2-hour tutorial.

In a nutshell, though, here’s what it ultimately comes down to:

 

Knowing what foods are safe to eat

It all starts here.

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Your Body’s Wisdom – Invitation or Threat?

Woman having migraine headache.“Symptoms are a signal from the body that it is imbalanced, in distress, or in need of support.” 

Kelly Brogan, MD

Your body has it’s own innate inner wisdom.

In other words, with a little help from you – it has the ability to heal (you just need to give it what it needs).

How do you know what your body needs most?

You listen!

What signs and symptoms are your experiencing? How debilitating are they? Are you in pain, or is it more of a nagging discomfort that keeps you from enjoying your life to it’s fullest?

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The Myth of Weight Gain & What To Do About It

Calories LetterpressAre you swept up, once again, in the first-of-the-year weight-loss battle?

Post holidays, it’s not uncommon to be 5-10 pounds heavier than you were two weeks ago and frustrated (yet again) that yet another year has passed where you ate all this junky food and are feeling like crap from all the over-indulgence.

Chances are you’re also thinking about what to do to start losing that weight. (It’s why Gym memberships EXPLODE during January.) You’re going to start seeing all these Detox and Cleanse programs – with the emphasis on exercising more and reducing calories.

While that’s all well & good, there’s also an elephant in the room!

What if I told you that your struggles to lose weight aren’t so much about how much you’re eating, but rather WHAT you’re eating? And that the chemicals and other irritants in your environment can also have an enormous impact on your weight!

What’s toxic to your body?

If your normal diet is gluten-free, (maybe dairy-free as well) and you veered off that path, that alone can get you off track.

But maybe you didn’t stray. Maybe you did everything ‘right’ –  yet you still baked, and ate your share of seemingly safe holiday treats. In that case, you might simply have eaten more refined gluten-free flours and starches than you would normally eat, and are now feeling bloated and out of sorts. (Not to mention the additives and preservatives typically found in processed foods – whether gluten-free or not).

Add to this a simmering cocktail of chemicals like BPA found in plastic storage containers, water bottles, and store receipts! (you’ve likely read about this offender in the news)

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How To Find Your Path & Stick With It

Tree blocking the roadHave you stepped on the scale this week?

Post holidays, it’s not uncommon to be 5-10 pounds heavier than you were two weeks ago.

And frustrated (yet again) that another year has passed where you ate all this junky food and are feeling like crap from all the over-indulgence – too much pies and cakes and pastries at holiday parties (or too many cookies, in my case).

And now you’re regretting it!

Chances are your digestive system is also out of whack because you’ve been eating things you normally don’t eat. And you’re paying for it now with daily heartburn & indigestion – along with those extra 10 pounds. 

It’s also the time of year when (after the wave of regret passes) you’re likely thinking about what to do to start losing that weight. (It’s why Gym memberships EXPLODE during January.)

You’re going to start seeing all these Detox and Cleanse programs – with the emphasis on exercising more and reducing calories.

And yet, you already know doesn’t work!

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How Not to Feel Like Crap by New Year’s

to-do-list-smallHow’s your stress level these days?

Are you obsessing over the busy-ness of the holiday season? With gifts to purchase (and wrap), parties to plan (and attend), and guests to entertain it’s no wonder that for many of us the holidays are the most stressful time of the year.

And that doesn’t even cover the food !

Tables laden with holidays feasts, and endless gluten-filled, sugary treats – how will you survive?

It’s a common refrain from many of my clients – along with saying this:

“I don’t want to feel like crap by January 1!”

Are you wondering how you can rein in your appetite when so many temptations abound? No question, the holidays are stressful, with so much to do and so little time.

Even more worrisome, is that stress plays a HUGE compounding role for just about any health concern you might have – especially your digestive health!

With that in mind, here are my 3 favorite tips for managing your stress during the holiday season, so you don’t feel like crap come New Year’s!

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Is It Time For You to H.A.L.T.?

Frustrated woman waiting for a phone call in Christmas kitchenThe holidays are upon us, and for many it’s the most challenging time of the year.

The heavy emphasis on love and joy, family togetherness and endless festivities can easily take you down, special diet or not.

Worse still, what if the holidays find you alone?

What if you’re dealing with a recent break-up, an illness, or worse still – a death in the family?

Can you relate?

While there’s no question these things are difficult any time of the year, the pain and heartache increases ten-fold during the month of December.

Yet the bigger issue is this: when you’re up against life’s challenges, do you still find time to take proper care of yourself?

How do you deal with those typical stressors we call ‘Life’, that will inevitably come your way?

This is where some mental gymnastics come into play – in the form of a self-coaching technique known as H.A.L.T.

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