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The Complexities of PCOS

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a disorder that has undergone many changes in diagnostic criteria over the last 30 years. Previously, the diagnosis was based on the presence of polycystic ovaries (PCO): an increased number of follicles in each ovary and/or an abnormally large ovarian volume. But the multi-system involvement in PCOS has led to multiple versions or subtypes of the disorder. PCOS and PCO are associated with metabolic and hormonal dysfunction including insulin resistance and the resulting high levels of androgens, such as testosterone. The result of this dysfunction is the characteristically high number of immature follicles within the

Insomnia – Natural approaches

Insomnia is the most prevalent sleep disorder and affects a large proportion of the population on a situational, recurrent or chronic basis.[i] An estimated one third of a general population presents at least one form of insomnia and 6% to 10% meet criteria for an insomnia disorder.[ii] Prescription ‘sleeping pills’ (or sedative hypnotics) are associated with numerous side effects and according to available evidence, the risks of chronic hypnotic use outweigh the benefits.[iii] Thankfully, various natural alternatives are available. Lifestyle and diet There are several aspects of our lifestyle and diet that can be modified to improve sleep quality. For

PEA: Unique topical health benefits

The skin is one of the largest organs in the body and has a variety of cells including: keratinocytes, sebaceous glands, fibroblasts, melanocytes, adipocytes (fat cells) and so on. These cells in turn have a large range of receptors among others, endocannabinoid and related receptors like CB1, CB2, TRPV1, PPAR, COX, opioid, TLR, GRP55, GPR119 etc. Observational reports from the 1990s showed that when cannabis, hashish and other variants of cannabis were abused, there was accompanied skin disorders like hair loss, acne, ageing, dermatitis, dry skin etc. These observations indicated that cannabinoids may modulate these receptors and that using the

Curcumin Ultra: New clinical findings

Three new studies provide further evidence of the effectiveness of the unique molecule-curcumagalactomannoside complex (CGC) which is one of the key ingredients used in AOR’s Curcumin Ultra softgels. Building on the already impressive body of work, the first study compared once a day 400 mg of CGC containing 130 mg of curcumin against the standard combination of 500 mg of glucosamine and 415 mg of chondroitin sulphate taken twice daily dose (total daily dose of 1000 mg glucosamine and 830 mg chondroitin sulphate) in terms of effectiveness in patients with osteoarthritis. This was a six-week, 72 patient study. In the

The Miracle of Muscles

Our muscles are capable of amazing, precise and coordinated force; from lifting a teacup to explosive movements such as sprinting and power lifting. Muscles allow for tremendous function so that we can explore our full physical potential. Approximately 40% of our body is composed of skeletal muscle but there are several other types of muscles including smooth and cardiac muscle (Guyton and Hall 2006). There are almost 700 individual muscles in your body and they come in all shapes and sizes (Tortora and Grabowski 2003). The smallest skeletal muscle in your body is located in your middle ear and is

THYRO SUPPORT: A NOVEL APPROACH TO IMPROVING METABOLISM

We put on weight when we regularly consume more calories than we use through our normal bodily functions or expend during our daily physical activities. Unfortunately, losing weight by eating fewer calories and burning more energy is easier said than done. Many of our lifestyle habits make it difficult to shake those extra pounds. When we are stressed, it’s easy to reach for the sugary pick-me-up, or skip out on a few extra hours of much needed sleep. When we have had a long day at work, settling in on the sofa for a few hours of tv may be

Supporting Vegetarian Athletes for Improved Performance

Athletes have special needs when it comes to fuelling for optimized performance.  Nutrition requirements are continuously shifting depending on the desired activity as well personal goals such as weight loss or improvements to lean muscle mass. There are a growing number of vegetarian athletes at the amateur and professional levels which raises discussions on whether or not an athlete is put at a disadvantage when choosing to eliminate some or a majority of animal derived foods.  While there are several types of different vegetarian diets, including but not limited to lacto-, ovo- and macro-, we are going to discuss the

Protecting Your Telomeres – the Key to Fighting Aging with Science

At the end of each of our chromosomes there is a non-coding, repeating DNA segment called a telomere. Telomeres act in a similar way to the protective cap on the end of a shoelace. Like the plastic or metal cap keeps the shoelace from fraying and unraveling, telomeres cap each strand of DNA to protect our chromosomes from damage. There is significant research showing the correlation between telomere length and lifespan. Prematurely shortened telomeres have been linked to increased risk for a variety of health concerns and decreased longevity. As we age, our telomeres will naturally shorten by 20 to

Staying Young with Resveratrol

Many studies in recent years have reported that there are health benefits, including life extension, associated with moderate consumption of red wine. Why is this the case? What is it about red wine that makes it so beneficial? The answer is resveratrol, a plant compound that has been found to have numerous health enhancing properties. Resveratrol is found in as many as 70 plant species, including grapes, Japanese knotweed and peanuts. It has been suggested that dietary resveratrol acts as an antioxidant and reduces the damage of free radicals. Resveratrol also mimics the biological effects of a calorie-restricted diet and

Creating Beauty From Within

True beauty is whole! Today, beauty and anti-aging practices are flourishing due to increased consumer demand for products and treatments that support youthful appearances. Many of these approaches may be effective in their external application, and can provide results that makes us happy! However, these short-term external results often discount the internal aspects of health, which are required for sustainability.  Can we achieve youthfulness and beauty without compromising overall health? Can it be easy and sustainable? How do we avoid temptation of cutting corners and make an honest effort? And where do we start? With high demand and numerous options,

Is post-pandemic stress affecting your digestion?

COVID-19 Impact Stress can be lifesaving but when it becomes chronic, it has all sorts of negative impacts both on our physical and mental health. During this period and even now as we are trying to get back to a more normal life, many factors such as social Isolation, financial losses, concerns for loved ones and fear of contracting the virus are all adding up and taking their toll on our stress load. This emotional stress is affecting our overall health. The gut-brain axis Our whole digestive system – including our gut – is a lot more in sync with

ALCAR FOR COGNITIVE SUPPORT

Cognitive function encompasses many domains such as attention, memory, reasoning, and language. Our brains continually change throughout our lives. Unfortunately, as we age our cognitive function declines. We may become more forgetful, or easily distracted, or struggle to concentrate on tasks as easily as we used to. This is all part of the aging process and these changes are completely normal, albeit they can cause frustration!   The normal aging process is different from dementia, which refers to a group of conditions, which cause significant impairments in memory, intellectual function, spatial awareness, language, and behavior. Unlike the normal aging process,

Oral Health- Beyond Brushing your Teeth

Oral Health and Overall Health The oral cavity is the starting point of our digestive tract, masticating and breaking down our food so we can begin to get nutrients. Beyond that, it is the first point of exposure to many pathogens; this vulnerability means we have developed the physiology and structure to keep us protected. We are going to review why oral health contributes to overall health and what you can do to fortify your first line of defense. Risky Business Our mouths and throat are designed to optimise function, meaning improve digestion and prevent infection. Most people associate our

Estrogen, Serotonin and Discomfort

Discomfort is a subjective perception influenced by numerous factors. Sensitivity to discomfort can be vastly different from one person to the next. Some influences on discomfort sensitivity levels include psychological and neurobiological factors, but gender and sex hormones also play a very particular role. Researchers have found that there are actual differences in how men and women experience severity of discomfort, because sex hormones are involved in discomfort transmission and sensitivity. Specifically, estrogen is linked to visceral discomfort sensitivity. That is, discomfort that is diffuse and poorly localized. In multiple disorders that involve visceral discomfort, such as gastrointestinal disturbances and

Tips for self-care for the busy mom

When thinking about self-care as a mom it’s easy to fall into the trap of “mom guilt.” We tend to feel bad about taking time for ourselves when we could be doing something for our kids or our home. But as we’ve all heard, it’s more detrimental to our mental (and physical) health to neglect our own needs. When moms put themselves on the back burner for too long resentment can build and/or we can burn out. Sometimes we know what to do when we do get “free time.” As I write this my own little one is upstairs taking

Natural health Products for Mood Support

When we talk about our health, we are often focused on the physical. However, we know that health encompasses so much more than this, and be truly healthy, we must look after our mental and social well-being. The last few months have come with a new set of challenges we have never experienced before. We have all experienced drastic changes to our daily routine. Most of us are not able to get out of the house for work or school, nor are we able to visit family and friends. For those with children, tackling work whilst also home-schooling and ensuring

The Ultimate Three Food Habits for a Healthy Microbiota

Over the past few years, what we used to call our good gut bacteria or intestinal flora has been the object of growing scientific investigations and public interest. It is now widely accepted that a healthy microbiome is one of the key-element to our overall health and the use of probiotics supplements and fermented foods have become common practice. However, we might not be so familiar with the best practices when it comes to feeding our microbiota and maintaining a healthy microbiome. Let’s explore some simple ways to achieve that! Getting acquainted with our wonderful microbiom Did you know that

Are you stressing out your digestive system?

By Dr. Sarah Zadek ND The importance of the digestive tract, also called the gastrointestinal tract (GIT), is often underestimated. Its purpose may seem to only digest food, absorb nutrients and then excrete waste; however, the world inside the GIT is actually an entire ecosystem, and one that constantly influences our health. The bacterial colonies within this system uses the food we send down, producing nutrients and neurotransmitters, sending signals, influencing the inflammatory response and the immune system, and interacting with the nervous system. There are literally trillions of living microorganisms inside the gut with the power of suggestion over

Pre, Pro, And Post- Biotics: strategies for management of Gastrointestinal Discomfort

Dr Traj Nibber and Dr Anjan Nibber Our gut contains billions of live bacteria, belonging to over a 1000 different species. In fact, the bacteria in our gut are thought to outnumber the number of cells of an adult person by 10-100 fold! These bacteria, or microbiota, play a crucial role in maintaining the delicate balance in the gut or homeostasis, including the metabolism of nutrients and the production of essential vitamins (K and B12). Gut microbiota can also prevent invasion of pathogenic bacteria by outcompeting them for adherence to mucosa and epithelium (the lining of the gut wall) for

Stress, Cortisol and Immunity

In today’s unpredictable environment of world-wide pandemics, health concerns and economic uncertainty, it is easy to succumb to the negative effects of stress on the body. We are being exposed to a greater variety of stressors daily. We may think that one type of stress is better or worse than another, but in reality, the body interprets and responds to all stress in the same manner: cortisol release. You may have heard cortisol described as the “stress hormone.” When the body experiences stress, cortisol and catecholamines are released from the adrenal cortex which activate the “fight-or-flight” mechanism. This mechanism prepares

Blog – Fit for fiber; the role fiber plays in maintaining gut health

by Dr. Aaron Zadek ND, CISSN Dietary fiber plays an important role in maintaining gut health and function.  Fiber is useful in helping feel full after meals, ensuring our bowel movements are regular as well as stimulating the growth of healthy bacteria to allow the gut microbiome to thrive. It is important that fiber, both soluble and insoluble, is included in everyday consumption to ensure optimal gut health (1). These fibers are found in a variety of different foods as well as prebiotic and full fiber supplements that can be used in times of bowel irregularity or for general health

Harness the Immune Boosting Power of Mushrooms and AHCC

Mushrooms and fungi have been used in medicine for thousands of years. They have been used traditionally to treat and prevent infections, protect the liver and offset the negative effects of stress. There are many different varieties of mushrooms that have demonstrated beneficial effects against boosting the immune system. Mushrooms contain specific compounds including polysaccharides; in particular β-glucans, polysaccharopeptides (PSP), polysaccharide proteins, and proteins.  The various glucans, and especially β-glucans, have become the focus of a great deal of research into immune system modulation and infection prevention. β-glucans are large polysacharrides, which means that they are formed from a large