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Eating healthy fats can help the body’s own healing process

What if I told you that chronic use of both over the counter and prescription anti-inflammatory drugs will inhibit your body’s natural ability to heal and increase the likelihood of systemic inflammation.

Anti-inflanss2erzqwgw-freestocks-org-1mmatory drugs such as aspirin, NSAIDs, and steroids block normal prostaglandin function by inhibiting the conjugation of essential fatty acids in the prostaglandin pathway that ultimately lead to prostaglandin formation. Prostaglandins are hormone-like substances that the body can’t do without. They occur in nearly all body tissues and fluid. Prostaglandins have a multitude of functions in the body and are responsible for controlling inflammatory function by using three groups of prostaglandins to both inflame and anti-inflame the body. Prostaglandin 1 (PG1) and Prostaglandin 3 (PG3) are anti-inflammatory and Prostaglandin 2 (PG2) is the pro-inflammatory.

All three of these prostaglandins are important in the healing process of the body and it is important that they remained balanced. The body’s anti-inflammatory prostaglandins PG1 and PG3 are important for modulating inflammation. These inflammation processes happen all over the body, even in areas that we might not be able to perceive inflammation.

The body uses Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids to create anti-inflammatory prostaglandins. Many of us are lacking in both the intake of quality fats as well as the ability to digest these fats making the conjugation of these prostaglandins a difficult process for the body, add to that the consumption of NSAIDs, aspirin, and steroids and we’re making an already difficult process harder. We need these anti-inflammatory prostaglandins to keep our body in homeostasis. If the body is unable to fight off both acute and chronic inflammation it will lead to dysfunction and possibly disease.

The third group of prostaglandins is conjugated by the consumption of saturated fats.  The body produces PG 2 in response to illness or injury, it is part of the body’s inflammation management cycle. The body must first inflame before it can anti-inflame, this acute inflammation is necessary for the healing process but can also cause discomfort and pain. NSAIDs, aspirin, and steroids block the normal PG2 function by inhibiting the conjugation of fatty acids into arachidonic acid, and then into PG2. But too much PG2 and not enough PG1 and PG3 will cause an imbalance in the body and lead to the systemic inflammation that causes disease.

There are times where these drugs are helpful and might be necessary but if they are used habitually, they might be doing more harm than good.

NSAIDs, aspirin and the like are prescribed to help relieve the pain and inflammation associated with the inflammation process. The problem with this is that by taking these drugs you are shutting down the body’s own ability to heal. These drugs affect the production of all three types of prostaglandins and it’s very important that these three groups remain balanced in order to achieve optimal health.

Body Positive Nutritional Therapy, Uncategorized

Dear Scale, we’re breaking  up…it’s not me, it’s you.

My scale broke, and I have no intention of replacing it. As someone who has spent her whole life trying to lose weight, to take up less space, to just be less and always feeling not good enough because of my weight, I developed a relationship with the scale at a young age. Don’t get me wrong, the scale can be a useful tool, but I have found that for many, myself included, the scale that’s supposed to measure our weight, more often gets used as a scale to measure our self-worth.

I know I’m not alone in those feelings or in the power I’ve given to the number the scale reveals…like shaking a magic 8 ball and waiting for it to decide your fate…. the number that appeared on the scale had the power to make me immediately dislike myself, to vow to “be better” and either way, “good” number or “bad”, it justified my negative self-talk, the need to be so hard on myself, to restrict or consume.  In a world that is constantly bombarding us with all the ways we need to “fix” ourselves, it’s hard not to feel inadequate.  And to be honest…. it’s fucking exhausting.

I am so done with the self-loathing, and the energy it takes. We consume food- food should not consume us. This journey towards self-acceptance and unconditional self-love started with an internal belief that health and healing and all the good bits of life can only come from being big.

This concept of loving ourselves into better health is what ultimately drove me to enroll in the Nutritional Therapy Practitioner program through the NTA. I knew there was a better way to healing than what was being offered to me.

“Just eat nothing and work out ALL the time!” “Take this supplement, I saw it on Dr. OZ” “You should put up pictures of the body you want all around the house and look at it anytime you eat, so you’re shamed into not eating.” Seriously?? Is this the best we can do? Is this the best advice we have for women?

I refuse to buy into the notion that our only gift to this world is maintaining smallness- to be small in size, to be small in the passion and energy we bring to the world, to be small with our opinions, to not be too loud or opinionated, to not be the funniest person in the room, to not be the most successful person in the room, to always dim down our light to not make others feel bad.  To shrink down with insecurities and self-doubt instead of stepping into the full power given to me by my maker (be that God, the universe, source energy- all are welcome to the table)

Well, how’s that been working for you? Do any of those thoughts or ideas make you feel better about yourself? No! But I bet they do make you feel small.

Let’s be BIG!  I choose to spend my energy being more…more loving, more generous, more empathetic, more centered, more present, more successful, more knowledgeable.  I can be stronger, more flexible, healthier, all of these actions add to my life and are about empowerment and growth; to me, they are worth doing the work. I am ready to take up the full energetic space that I deserve…and I encourage you to join me. Let’s be more, together.

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Why eating fat doesn’t make us fat

Processed with VSCO with a5 presetThe common misconception that “if you eat fat, you’ll get fat” has contributed to the obesity epidemic in a multitude of ways. Healthy fats are an integral part of a healthy diet. Healthy fats are responsible for proper hormone production, cell structure and vitamin absorption. Fats are also our bodies most abundant and slow-burning source of energy.

When we are afraid to eat fats, we have to make up the calories from a different macronutrient. For most people eating a SAD diet, this means more processed and refined carbohydrates. We also have to recognize that as fat was being vilified in the American diet, manufacturers needed something to replace the fats in their products. They replaced the fats with sugar and lots of it. As consumption of low-fat, high sugar “healthy” foods such as fat-free flavored yogurts, SnackWell cookies, and pasta increases, so has the obesity epidemic.

When we don’t eat healthy fats and do eat lots of processed carbohydrates we are setting our bodies up for blood sugar dysregulation, weight issues and eventually, disease. Our bodies are not designed to handle the amount of sugar that we are feeding them. Simple sugars such as sodas, sweets, pasta and white flour products break down very quickly in the body leading to quick rises and quick falls in blood glucose levels causing a hormonal avalanche to ensue. Fats help maintain blood glucose levels by slowing down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, helping our bodies maintain a gentle rise and gentle fall of blood glucose levels.

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We were designed to use a balance of unrefined carbohydrates along with good fats and proteins as our primary sources of fuel. Our body wants to use both dietary and stored fat as fuel. Diets high in refined carbohydrates turn our bodies into sugar burning metabolizers and this sugar burning metabolizing turns off our fat burning metabolism, meaning our body does not have access to its stored fat for energy. When we are running on sugar, the body is forced to make many hormonal and metabolic changes one of which results in the formation of new fat stores or “lipogenesis”. This means that the glucose that exists in the cell can’t be used for energy but will be converted into adipose tissue. And the cycle continues with weight gain and insulin resistance and then eventually Type 2 diabetes.

High-quality fats, such as fats from grass fed cows, pastured pigs, eggs and meat from pastured chickens, avocados, wild caught fish,butter from grass fed cows, coconut oils, nuts, and seeds are necessary to maintain a healthy weight. When we remove them from the diet, the body does not feel nourished, it does not feel satiated, it lacks in fat-soluble vitamins A,D, E, K and B12 and minerals that are necessary for optimal health. Replacing fats with highly processed carbohydrates stresses out the body, stress causes the body to down-regulate other systems in the body such as digestion and immunity, causing more dysfunction. We are more than the sum of our parts, every shift our body makes, for better or worse has a profound effect, for better or worse, on all the systems of the body.

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Educating my clients about the negative impact that sugar and refined carbohydrate consumption have on their body is a key step in empowering them to make some big shifts in their health. I will continue to educate my clients about the importance of healthy fats and how increasing consumption of healthy fats can help them manage their weight, have more energy, feel more satiated and improve blood sugar regulation.