Reduce Inflammation, Improve Brain Function

What if I could tell you how to reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s by 50% and serious cardiac events by 90%? Lets also add improved attention, mood, skin, joint pain, and resistance to concussion. This treatment intervention will help these and most other conditions by improving the health of billions of your cells, reducing inflammation and improving brain function. At Team Health Care Clinic in Champlin, MN we make sure our patient’s road to restored health starts with addressing this key foundational marker of health.

So what is this foundational treatment? It is omega 3 fatty acids. You probably have heard of this important nutrient– also called fish oils. You may even be taking them. However, if you are like me and almost every one of our patients, you may be missing one very important step to make sure you are benefiting from your fish oils. That step is determining if you are even taking a  therapeutic dose and, if so, whether or not it is improving your health markers.

You can’t know unless you test.

In order to reap the immense benefits of taking omega three fatty acid‘s, you must have therapeutic levels in your blood. Omega-3 deficiency in the United States is rampant. In our informal study of our patients and staff who were actually taking omega-3 fatty acid‘s, over 90% had levels that were determined to be far too low when tested. You can’t know how much omega 3 fatty acids you should be taking unless you test. For this reason we have partnered with a company, Brainspan, to provide this important testing for our patients.

Brainspan tests for inflammation, leaky cells and brain function.

The following foundational markers of health are obtained by this test:

  1. Inflammation ratio looks at an important ration of “bad fats” to “good fats.” Two generations ago that ratio was generally 3:1. Currently that ratio in the US is 20:1 due to our diet changes. If you don’t get your ratio to 5:1 or better you likely have systemic inflammation which ultimately results in chronic disease.
  2. Leaky cell assessment determines your actual omega 3 levels. These fats are critical components of your cell walls. When your levels drop to below 8%, your cell walls begin weakening. The report will tell you how much you need to take and for how long to get to therapeutic levels.
  3. Brain function is assessed using a brief web based cognitive function test for attention, memory and processing speed.

Taking the Brainspan test is easy and painless. The information obtained from the Brainspan test gives our providers an advantage over others who simply make recommendations based on what is generally understood about Omega 3 fatty acids. Our patients often mention that they feel more in control of their health.

Those who are interested in taking the Brainspan test should speak with their provider. If you do not have a provider who offers Brainspan, contact us to purchase your Brainspan kit, currently available in our clinic for $99.

Jay Bertsch, DC

Jay Bertsch, DC

 

4 Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s Disease

At Team Health Care Clinic, we work with people who have dementia or who are concerned and want to prevent it.  I was quite interested when I found an article from a study showing decreased brain size, and therefore risk for dementia and Alzheimer’s, is related to four controllable lifestyle factors.

The study, from the Radiological Society of North America, involved over 1,600 people during the course of seven years. It measured brain size and its relationship to risk factors.  Their conclusion was that decreased brain size and, therefore, dementia is related to these controllable factors.

Alzheimer’s Risk Factors

  1. Alcohol consumptionAlzheimer's is related to decreased brain size
  2. Smoking
  3. Diabetes
  4. Obesity

It turns out that alcohol consumption and diabetes were associated with smaller volume of the whole brain.  Smoking and obesity were linked with decreased volume of the part of the brain associated with memory retrieval as well as emotional and social behavior.

Dementia, of which Alzheimer’s Disease makes up between 50%-70% of the cases, is a growing concern.  As our population ages the incidence of dementia is continuing to grow.  Deaths from dementia have doubled in the last 25 years and care costs are in the hundreds of billions.  Also, there is no treatment for dementia.  Prevention is the key.

The above list is not exhaustive and there are other causes for dementia.  However, these are the biggest offenders and they are preventable!  Dementia is a slow developing, chronic condition closely tied to lifestyle choices.  This means that we have the time and the ability to make changes.  The prescription never changes.  Eat a low starch and low sugar diet, exercise, don’t smoke and drink only in moderation.

Our clinic does provide nutritional and brain health support for all of this.  However, it’s up to you to do the work and help yourself.

Tim Bertsch, DC, DABCI

Tim Bertsch, DC, DABCI

 

Dizziness and Vertigo: The Vitamin D Connection

Each day at Team Health Care Clinic, patients come to us with symptoms of vertigo and dizziness. These may be symptoms that have been there for a matter of hours, or even years. People often experience severe bouts of dizziness, strong sensations of spinning and nausea. To help our patients get relief from these debilitating symptoms, we provide treatment and make recommendations that address the causes of dizziness and vertigo. 

What Causes Dizziness

Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common cause of dizziness that we see in our Champlin clinic. This condition is caused by calcium crystals that become dislodged from their usual position in the inner ear.

How Vitamin D HelpsCauses Dizziness Vertigo

The main role of vitamin D in the body is to help maintain normal blood levels of calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D is responsible for absorbing calcium, which plays many roles in maintaining a healthy body, including strengthening bone and decreasing fractures. Vitamin D also helps in protecting against osteoporosis, high blood pressure, cancer, and other diseases.

We are now learning about the role vitamin D plays in helping patients with dizziness and vertigo. Past studies have shown vitamin D deficiency can lead to BPPV. Additionally, research has shown that those who have BPPV and are also deficient in vitamin D have more severe symptoms of vertigo.

This two-fold role that vitamin D deficiency plays in causing BPPV and making the symptoms more severe makes it even more important that your levels are in the proper range. If you haven’t had your vitamin D levels checked before, a simple blood test can be done to see if your levels are in a functional range.

Chiropractic and Physical Therapy for Dizziness

Our chiropractors and physical therapists work with a multitude of patients who have dizziness and vertigo, including BPPV. We provide chiropractic adjustments, physical therapy, nutrition support and more to help decrease symptoms and get our patients feeling better faster.

Each of the doctors and physical therapists in our clinic are trained in repositioning the crystals in the inner ear to provide relief from the vertigo that patients experience. The name of this procedure is called an Epley Maneuver. This safe, quick, and very effective maneuver can be done in just a minute or two. Patients often feel immediate relief. 

Erik Starr, DC

Erik Starr, DC

Abdominal Pain, Diarrhea and Bloating: Is SIBO the Cause?

SIBO or Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth is an all too common condition that can have profound health effects. It is a problem that many people have, but very few have even heard of.  The symptoms of SIBO include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloating and gas, especially after eating starch or sugar
  • Indigestion
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

Many of these symptoms are associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).  In fact, some studies have shown that almost 80% of IBS occurs as a result of SIBO.  Also associated with SIBO are the following conditions:

  • 53% of people who use an acid medication
  • 66% of people with celiac disease with persistent symptoms
  • 15% of the elderly population
  • 33% of people with chronic diarrhea
  • 90% of alcoholics

So, what is SIBO?

SIBO is a condition where the bacteria that normally live in your large intestine, and are very beneficial there, have migrated into your small Diarrhea, Abdominal Pain, Gas caused by SIBOintestine. Unfortunately, they are not beneficial in the small intestine and will begin to cause digestive problems when they take up residence in that area.  When we feed these bacteria the wrong foods, which include starches and sugars, it increases their metabolism and they give off various gases causing many of the symptoms that are listed above.

The treatment for SIBO requires two things. First, one must nutritionally support the small intestine and its terrain. This involves the use of nutrition supplements but, more importantly, the avoidance of certain foods, particularly refined carbohydrates.

The second thing that needs to be done is that one must address the underlying mechanisms or the causes of SIBO. Those include such things as:

  • Neurodegenerative disease, particularly Parkinson’s syndrome.
  • Brain trauma/concussion
  • Poorly controlled diabetes
  • Hypothyroid disease
  • Celiac disease
  • Post intestinal surgical alterations
  • Immunodeficiency

As one can see, SIBO is a condition that affects many people. Unfortunately, quite often the standard gastroenterologist either doesn’t consider it or does not have a great treatment for it. It is a condition with which we are quite familiar at Team Health Care Clinic. If you are experiencing abdominal pain, bloating, constipation or diarrhea that no one seems to be addressing, please call the clinic for a consultation.

Tim Bertsch, DC, DABCI

Tim Bertsch, DC, DABCI