“Termination of Intractable Hiccups with Digital Rectal Massage.”

Before I even question the relevance of silly studies, I want to discuss if researchers really have lives. It has become apparent that many researches have a) too much spare time b) slightly odd grants/ funding c) experimented with mind altering chemicals during there misspent youth or d) spent much too much time alone with single cell organisms. If you do not believe me, check out some of these studies: “The Effects of Country Music on Suicide;”  “Chickens Prefer Beautiful Humans;””Safe and Painless Manipulation of Penile Zipper Entrapment” (this study followed a night of studying Does Semen Have Antidepressant Properties?–well, I will not go any further here) You get the idea. Scientist have active minds and time to experiment. (check out the Ig Nobel awards for more)

"Impact of Wet Underwear on Thermoregulatory Responses and Thermal Comfort in the Cold"

Maybe it is the long hours with single cell organisms, or just human nature, but many studies focus on love and sex. As humans, we write about love, sing about love, ponder love in philosophical discussions, and we scientifically study love. A modern day anthropologist was once asked by a Hopi Native American, ‘why most songs were about love?’ In his culture they mostly sang about rain, because this is what they needed most and desired greatly. It seems he answered his own question without realizing it. This brings me to the real reason for this blog. Is love as easy as a chemical reaction or something much bigger?

A recent study breaks love down to a biochemical process, of oxytocin and vasopressin manipulating our poor helpless brains: “Scientists are finding that love is down to a chemical addiction between people.” The study of prairie voles’ sex life exemplified the effects of oxytocin and vasopressin by blocking the hormones.

for the love of voles

“When prairie voles have sex, two hormones called oxytocin and vasopressin are released. If the release of these hormones is blocked, prairie-voles’ sex becomes a fleeting affair, like that normally enjoyed by their rakish montane cousins. Conversely, if prairie voles are given an injection of the hormones, but prevented from having sex, they will still form a preference for their chosen partner. In other words, researchers can make prairie voles fall in love — or whatever the vole equivalent of this is — with an injection.”….”Sex stimulates the release of vasopressin and oxytocin in people, as well as voles, though the role of these hormones in the human brain is not yet well understood.”

“Helen Fisher, a researcher at Rutgers University, and the author of a new book on love, suggests it comes in three flavors: lust, romantic love and long-term attachment.” Despite Dr Fisher’s reservations, might drugs also help people to fall in love, or perhaps fix broken relationships? Probably not. Dr Pfaus says that drugs may enhance portions of the ‘love experience’ but fall short of doing the whole job because of their specificity. And if a couple fall out of love, drugs are unlikely to help either. Dr Fisher does not believe that the brain could overlook distaste for someone — even if a couple in trouble could inject themselves with huge amounts of dopamine.

However, she does think that administering serotonin can help someone get over a bad love affair faster. She also suggests it is possible to trick the brain into feeling romantic love in a long-term relationship by doing novel things with your partner. Any arousing activity drives up the level of dopamine and can therefore trigger feelings of romance as a side effect.  Romantics, of course, have always known that love is a special sort of chemistry. Scientists are now beginning to show how true this is.” http://www.oxytocin.org/oxytoc/love-science.html

I argue there is so much more to love than hormones and chemical reactions. As humans we tend to analyze and over think situations, especially love. People discuss the conflict between their heart and their head. So I counter the studies, saying love is far more than a simple chemical reaction, even if they do play a role.  In my research aka odd dating life, I found love in anything but predictable. Throughout history love is described as multidimensional, messy, complicated, and in other more colorful ways. Love is in our hearts, soul, mind, spirit, kidneys….Well, we are discovering love is stored in many cells throughout our bodies– some cells that have no receptors for oxytocin or other chemicals, so it can not be only a chemical addiction.

Note: Studies  attempt to explain emotions and memories stored at a cellular level in our bodies. A few of these studies arose from organ transplant patients that developed a few personality traits of the donors such as food cravings, artistic ability, increased libido, etc. http://www.paulpearsall.com/info/press/3.html

Support Licensing of Naturopathic Physicians in NC

Support NC Licensing of Naturopathic Physicians

by William Franklin on Wednesday, May 25, 2011 at 9:31am

In the next 2 weeks, we need to make sure each person on the list below is contacted and encouraged to support HB1404 and SB1043.  This bill allows ND’s trained at accredited universities and colleges to sit for licensure in NC and practice medicine as we were trained to do. 

Here are some talking points you can include in your communications along with your own personal story explaining why you want us to be licensed….

A naturopathic doctor is an expert in natural medicine and is someone who has been trained and has received a degree in naturopathy from one of the six accredited naturopathic medical schools in North America.

Licensure of naturopathic doctors would allow consumers to distinguish practitioners who have been educated and trained in one of the six accredited naturopathic medical schools from individuals who may have completed correspondence courses or learned their skills through less formal pathways thus providing protection for patients who choose non-conventional medicine or wish to blend conventional and non-conventional health care.

Legislators need to provide a pathway to licensure for individuals who have been educated and trained in the field of naturopathic medicine and, thus, provide protection for patients who choose non-conventional medicine or wish to blend conventional and non-conventional health care

Sixteen states and provinces (Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands) currently license naturopathic doctors, and efforts are underway in five other states to license and regulate the practice of naturopathic medicine.

The North Carolina Association of Naturopathic Physicians (NCANP) is a professional organization of clinically trained and formally educated doctors of naturopathic medicine. The organization currently has 30 members who are naturopathic physicians — each of whom has at least eight combined years of college and Naturopathic medical school and meet the national standards for licensure in the USA.  Those national standards include completion of a professional Naturopathic Degree from a four-year residential Naturopathic Medical School accredited by the federally recognized accrediting body, the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education, and successful passage of two sets of the Naturopathic Physicians Licensing Exams.

NC residents make the most impact but if you live outside NC you can also have a say.  Some have explained that they come to Asheville or western NC specifically for its alternative and complementary healthcare providers and then describe your experiences seeing an ND.  If you haven’t seen an ND but would if we were licensed and/or able to take insurance or you could be reimbursed through your insurance include this in your communcations.  

One email letter sent to 44 people or phone conversations averaging 1-2 minute each will make a huge difference.  The list of people who need to hear from you are… 

House Health:

Chairman Rep. Current: (919) 733-5809 E-mail: Bill.Current@ncleg.net

Chairman Rep. Dollar: 919-715-0795 E-mail: Nelson.Dollar@ncleg.net

Chairman Rep. Hollo: (919) 715-8351 E-mail: Mark.Hollo@ncleg.net

Vice Chairman Rep. Barnhart: (919) 715-2009  E-mail: Jeff.Barnhart@ncleg.net

Vice Chairman Rep. R. Brown: (919) 715-0873 E-mail: Rayne.Brown@ncleg.net

Vice Chairman Rep. Burr: 919-733-5908  E-mail: Justin.Burr@ncleg.net

Vice Chairman Rep. Earle: (919) 715-2530  E- mail:  Beverly.Earle@ncleg.net

Members Rep. Blackwell, Rep. Brisson, Rep. Brubaker, Rep. Cotham, Rep. Crawford, Rep. Farmer-Butterfield, Rep. Howard, Rep. Hurley, Rep. Insko, Rep. Jackson, Rep. Lewis, Rep. Murry, Rep. Pierce, Rep. Randleman, Rep. Samuelson, Rep. Steen, Rep. Wainwright, Rep. Weiss, Rep. Wray

Senate Health:

Co-Chairman Sen. Stan Bingham  (919) 733-5665 E-mail: Stan.Bingham@ncleg.net

Co-Chairman Sen. Harris Blake: (919) 733-4809 E-mail: Harris.Blake@ncleg.net

Co-Chairman Sen. Louis Pate: (919) 733-5621 E-mail: Louis.Pate@ncleg.net

Vice Chairman Sen. James Forrester: (919) 715-3050 E-mail: James.Forrester@ncleg.net

Members Sen. Austin M. Allran /E-mail: Austin.Allran@ncleg.net, Sen. Bob Atwater/E-mail: Bob.Atwater@ncleg.net, Sen. Doug Berger/ E-mail: Doug.Berger@ncleg.net, Sen. Debbie A. Clary/  E-mail: Debbie.Clary@ncleg.net, Sen. Eleanor Kinnaird/ E-mail: Ellie.Kinnaird@ncleg.net, Sen. Eric Mansfield/ E-mail: Eric.Mansfield@ncleg.net, Sen. Wesley Meredith/ E-mail: Wesley.Meredith@ncleg.net, Sen. William R. Purcell/ E-mail: William.Purcell@ncleg.net, Sen. Bill Rabon/ E-mail: Bill.Rabon@ncleg.net, Sen. Gladys A. Robinson/ E-mail: Gladys.Robinson@ncleg.net, Sen. David Rouzer/ E-mail: David.Rouzer@ncleg.net, Sen. Bob Rucho/E-mail: Bob.Rucho@ncleg.net, Sen. Tommy Tucker/ E-mail: Tommy.Tucker@ncleg.net, Sen. Jim Davis/ E-mail: Jim.Davis@ncleg.net

write congress: http://www.congress.org/signon/congressorg/mail/?id=33698&lvl=L&chamber=S&type=ST&MC_targets=

Contact information for members of the Senate Committee on Health Care and the House Committee on Health and Human Services is recorded below.


“A candle loses no light by lighting another flame.”

“A candle loses no light by lighting another flame; and the world will become a much brighter place.”

Here is a you tube video from two friends of mine about how to make the world a better place and embrace humanity. We all would like to start our own little peaceful revolution by embracing humanity. Share the love and be healthier by doing so.


Brain Spa this Friday

“It is a Gut Feeling- is my Bacteria Telling me Something?”

Candida-"beasty yeasty"

It is a little disturbing to know that the bacteria in our gut communicates with our brain. (Frankly, it is very amazing that my bacteria can get a word in edge wise .) Although, with all the research, scientist have failed to find bacteria (even the beneficial flora) that communicate test answers, positive affirmations, or sweet nothings to our brains. However,  one study showed that cognitive behavioral treatment (CBT) is statistically and clinically effective for treatment of moderate-to-severe functional bowel disorders (including IBS). (http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/456987) In other words it is possible to work with the mind to kick some nasty GI conditions that may be link to GI flora. Too bad the bacteria can fight back; i.e. Candida loves to convince the brain we could use a little more simple sugars- its favorite food. Can we get the brain to be more forceful when telling the candida to get flushed? It seems we may soon know, but as for now studies focus on the links between bacteria and disease, the bacteria’s ability to cause mental changes and the effects of stress of bacteria.
For example: a nifty bunch of researchers at Ohio State University found that stress changed the composition of gastrointestinal bacteria, leading to less diverse flora, fewer protective bacteria, and more pathogenic microorganisms (those that cause disease) including Clostridium bacteria. Bailey MT et al. Exposure to a social stressor alters the structure of the intestinal microbiota: implications for stressor-induced immunomodulation. Brain Behavior and Immunity. 2011 Mar; 25(3):397-407.

Knowing It in Your Gut’: Cross-Talk Between Human Gut Bacteria and Brain

ScienceDaily (Mar. 24, 2011) — A lot of chatter goes on inside each one of us and not all of it happens between our ears. Researchers at McMaster University discovered that the “cross-talk” between bacteria in our gut and our brain plays an important role in the development of psychiatric illness, intestinal diseases and probably other health problems as well including obesity.

“The wave of the future is full of opportunity as we think about how microbiota or bacteria influence the brain and how the bi-directional communication of the body and the brain influence metabolic disorders, such as obesity and diabetes,” says Jane Foster, associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

Using germ-free mice, Foster’s research shows gut bacteria influences how the brain is wired for learning and memory. The research paper has been published in the March issue of the science journal Neurogastroenterology and Motility.

The study’s results show that genes linked to learning and memory are altered in germ-free mice and, in particular, they are altered in one of the key brain regions for learning and memory — the hippocampus.

“The take-home message is that gut bacteria influences anxiety-like behavior through alterations in the way the brain is wired,” said Foster.

Foster’s laboratory is located in the Brain-Body Institute, a joint research initiative of McMaster University and St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton. The institute was created to advance understanding of the relationship between the brain, nervous system and bodily disorders.

“We have a hypothesis in my lab that the state of your immune system and your gut bacteria — which are in constant communication — influences your personality,” Foster said.

She said psychiatrists, in particular, are interested in her research because of the problems of side effects with current drug therapy.

“The idea behind this research is to see if it’s possible to develop new therapies which could target the body, free of complications related to getting into the brain,” Foster said. “We need novel targets that take a different approach than what is currently on the market for psychiatric illness. Those targets could be the immune system, your gut function…we could even use the body to screen patients to say what drugs might work better in their brain.”


Is it “that time of the month” or that chicken nugget?

Not Happy StayPuff

After seeing many patients that are beginning to think that they are going nuts because they know certain foods cause adverse moods and no one seems to listen, I am posting this for them.

I have spoken with parents that see changes in their child’s handwriting and concentration after certain foods, not just beloved sugar, are consumed. I listened to patients discuss their mood swings due to food sensitivities and ‘nonsensitive’ foods  (according to labs). Most doctors do not validate this concept, therefore people feel as if they are loosing the plot.  I am very pleased that Dr. Gregor posted this article by Dr. Ciprian- thank you! At last an article speaking beyond the well know “happy neurotransmitters” that chocolate elicits.

Food affects Mood

Posted on May 9, 2011 by Dr. Robert Ciprian
Food affects Mood. What you eat can affect the way you feel

Food and Behavior. What you eat can cause mood swings, depression, anxiety and more.

Have you ever eaten something and shortly after you didn’t feel well. Maybe you felt a bit spacey, irritated, short tempered or anxious. Maybe you haven’t eaten in several hours and were hungry and you’ve would have mood swings or depression. These can all be related to the way you eat.

What you eat directly affects the way you feel. I think that anyone who goes through any type or counseling, therapy or psychology/psychiatry treatment should have their diet evaluated. I evaluate the diet of every single one of my patients. And if they have a down turn in their health I bring up the question of what they are eating again and reinforce it’s importance.

One theory about emotions deals with “neurotransmitters” that balance brain chemistry (ex: Serotonin, GABA, Melatonin, Oxytocin, Epinephrine, etc…).

Most neurotransmitters are made in the gut (thus the phrase, “I have a gut feeling”). The Food you eat affects the gut also and thus can affect the emotions. Sugar,Wheat, Corn, Dairy, Soy and trans fats or rancid oils are the the biggest types of things that you eat that can cause emotional problems form the gut to the brain’s neurotransmitters. These foods cause imbalances and problems in the gut and in turn can upset the production of the neurotransmitters. This is one reason why eating right is important for your emotional health.

Are you eating good healthy meats and good healthy fats daily? Vegans and vegetarians can actually have more anger and people who have cholesterol that is too low can gravitate toward violence. The amino acids and good healthy fats are needed in the production of neurotransmitters.

Another factor affecting your emotional well being that is related to the way you eat is your blood sugar balance. We know that there is an enormous diabetic problem in the US. There are also many people who have functional blood sugar type problems that are not considered pathological or at the state of disease yet. The thing is that even though some people’s blood sugar levels are in the “normal” ranges and may not be in the diabetic state, they may be causing other problems that are not diagnosable. When our blood sugar surges up and down, or keep going up and down like a roller coaster, it causes fluctuations in our metabolism and biochemistry and cause many emotional problems. This can lead to depression, anxiety, mood swings and more. This is why it is important to eat right, avoid Sugar,Wheat, Corn, Dairy, Soy and trans fats and rancid oils, and to snack often through out the day.

Eating smaller meals, more often during the day and waiting to eat when you are hungry has also been shown to improve your state of emotional well being.

Now please realize that when you are stressed and feeling emotional, you will gravitate toward eating things that are not good for you. This is the worst time to do it. When you are stressed or emotional your body is not in a stable place to deal with foods that will really screw you up. When you eat when you are stressed and emotional, it makes the problem much, much worse.

If you are going to eat something that you know is not good for you (there are holidays, birthdays, special occasions and traveling to Italy of course), make sure that you are feeling happy and healthy. Your body can handle the stress of it much more this way. And make sure that you eat a good meal before and after you have something that is not good for you.

To hear more about food and behavior listen to the May 6th, 2011 Get Fit Now Radio show with Eleni K. and Me by clicking here now: http://getfitnow.cascadia.fm/?p=479.

To feel better emotionally make sure that you are eating right, avoid Sugar,Wheat, Corn, Dairy, Soy and trans fats and rancid oils, and to snack often through out the day. Even for people who have severe emotional health issues, eating right can work wonders in conjunction with professional treatment.

If you are not feeling like life is fulfilling, it may just be that you diet is not fulfilling. Try eating right and see what happens!

Friday the 13th is Now Less Scary

Start your weekend out right with Nature’s Chest’s

Salt Scrubs & Sangrias


Come make beneficial salt scrubs for the softest birthday suit ever, while sipping yummy sangria this Friday (5/13). Class will be held at 6519 E. Oak St. Scottsdale AZ 85257 5-7pm!
Registration and Payments due by Thursday midnight, checks and paypal welcome via natureschest@gmail.com!
Nothing Scary about Friday the 13th- except scaly skin if you don’t come!
Salts exfoliates dead skin, improves the texture while Epsom salts can reduce inflammation, plus sulfates flush out toxins. Just to name a few of the benefits… contact us for more info!

oooh la la

“Hitting the Bottle”

Just say no

Similar to the author of this article, I have been shopping for friend’s baby showers and in the past all the wee ones that my siblings produced. It was good seeing all the BPA- free items and toys that were earth friendly plus non-toxic. It is quite humorous that I mostly went to specialty shops for healthy baby products…this should not be a specialty item! Since most people have given up the ancient ways of sacrificing first born, sending them down stream in a basket or exposure on hillsides; I feel we should also stop giving them toxins too.

We love and protect our little ones. So, why are healthy baby products not the norm? Profit and ignorance are the only two thoughts that stay in the non-conspiracy theory realm, but I am sure there are some crazy ideas out there. This article is to help enlighten, so we can go forth and change what is on the shelves of the shops. (For safe bottles: http://www.ewg.org/babysafebottles)

Hitting the Bottle

SUDDENLY, there’s a baby boom going on around me. I’m making weekly shopping trips to stock friends’ nurseries, and I’m struck by how many signs on the shelves advertise BPA-free bottles, BPA-free sippy cups. It breaks my heart. Manufacturers might be removing BPA, a chemical used to harden certain plastics, from their products, but they are substituting chemicals that may be just as dangerous, if not more so.

“BPA-free” seems like a step in the right direction. BPA, or Bisphenol A, is a synthetic estrogen that disrupts normal endocrine function. There is growing evidence in animal studies that exposure during fetal growth affects the development of reproductive systems and, in offspring, can lead to neurological problems. BPA has also been linked to prostate and breast cancer.”

BPA has been found on money, likely transferred from credit card and A.T.M. receipts printed on thermal paper that contains BPA; it’s also in dental sealants, in the lining of food cans, and in many other items.

Because the federal government has taken no action to ban or even limit BPA, some states have taken matters into their own hands. Maine just approved a ban on BPA in reusable food and beverage containers that will go into effect next year; Oregon is considering banning it in sippy cups and baby bottles.

In apparent recognition of the consumer clout new parents wield, some manufacturers have stopped using BPA. You would think this proves the marketplace can take care of these problems, right?

Wrong. Consider the thermal paper that comes out of cash registers. Its BPA passes through the skin into the bodies of anyone who works at check-out counters, as well as their customers. Appleton, a specialty paper company, markets a BPA-free thermal paper that uses Bisphenol S instead. The Environmental Protection Agency has a voluntary program that is evaluating BPS and 17 other possible substitutes for thermal paper, but has not yet completed its analysis. Until it does, it will not endorse any alternatives.

In the few, limited tests conducted outside the United States, BPS shows estrogenic activity — not as strong as BPA, but not a good sign. BPS is now used in the United States to make PES (polyethersulfone) plastic. Some baby bottles marketed as BPA-free use PES plastic.

Want to Read more http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/09/opinion/09browning.html?ref=opinion

Disrupting the Endocrine system is like poking a Bear

Endocrine System

Disrupting the Endocrine

aka Poking the Bear

Yesterday, I presented a webinar on polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). I discussed the endocrine system–not to cause extreme ennui, but to point out how our endocrine system affects our overall health.

Our bodies are incredibly intelligent (usually, but our brain can convince us chocolate cake is good food). We are naturally designed to run smoothly, constantly working to keep all systems in balance (aka homeostasis). As I was saying, the goal is balance. If we push one aspect of our system out of balance as a result of poor food choices, stress, trauma, chemicals or unhealthy-habit, our body steps up to compensate. When it can no longer compensate, our body begins to show signs and symptoms of disease. Pretty cool what goes on “behind the scenes” while we keep moving through our days–reading this fabulous blog, brushing our teeth, working, listening to NPR, etc.

The linked article below by TEDX gives us a handy-dandy list of all the endocrine disrupting chemicals that we should attempt to avoid. Every chemical shown on the TEDX list meets publishing standards by having one or more verified citations, and the article also cites the primary scientific research that demonstrated effects on the endocrine system.


more information….


Endocrine connections

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