One of the fun things I did this week was use my Groupon (love Groupon) at Grain Integrative Health. In case you haven't signed up for Groupon this is what is all about
Groupon negotiates huge discounts—usually 50-90% off—with popular businesses. We send the deals to thousands of subscribers in our free daily email, and we send the businesses a ton of new customers. That's the Groupon magic.
Groupon is awesome.
My groupon was for a Nutritional Evaluation with a Naturopathic Doctor and a Message. I had the Massage first with Natalie who was awesome. I have to say messages are relaxing after the fact but during can sometimes be painful. Natalie focuses on Stress Points and did wonders for me. I just had some tight muscles in my neck/shoulder area (where I hold stress) and in my quads (running) and when she was working on those areas we were both laughing because they were ticklish and painful at the same time! Natalie gave me some stretches to do after the message and I left the room in a zenful state. Thank you Natalie.
I met next with the Naturopathic Doctor and this is where I had my "come to Jesus" moment. Ha! I had to face up to my two vices- Sugar and Caffeine. The doctor was very nice and did a thorough evaluation and then shared his advice for me. There was a lot of talk about the digestive track as well as excretion habits. Good health seems to come down to having regular bowels movements!
A couple of things that I discovered is that I have extremely low blood pressure. I have always had low blood pressure but it seemed particularly low that day and the doctor explained that is not necessarily a good thing. Low blood presssure (hypotension) occurs when the heart does not work hard enough to push blood through the body. In some cases, the body does not need the heart to work any harder. This can put more stress on the other organs thus not necessarily a good thing!
Luckily, I don't really have any of the symptoms except for Dehydration (aha.... coffee habit) Symptoms
•Symptoms of hypotension, according to the AHA, may include blurred vision, dehydration, depression, difficulties concentrating, dizziness, clamminess, fainting, fatigue, lightheadedness, nausea and rapid or shallow breathing. Call a doctor, especially if you start to feel off balance.
•There are several medical conditions in which low blood pressure can occur, such as blood loss, thyroid disease, various nutritional deficiencies, infections, allergic reactions, dehydration, heart disease and pregnancy. Also, certain prescription drugs can be attributed to low pressure, especially those for heart disease and high blood pressure. If you take such prescription drugs, ask your doctor before taking any over-the-counter medications, as the combination may induce hypotension.
So after sharing that I drink 4-5 cups of coffee a day and have a terrible sweet tooth we think that with a few simple changes to my diet that I can bring my blood pressure up to a healthy place. I don't know if I have even shared with all of you about my terrible coffee habit. I have two to three cups in the morning and then maybe another two cups throughout the day. I cut myself off by 2:00pm so I can get to sleep but I am completely dehydrating my body even with my water intake.
Then coupling that with a sugar dose at the end of each day, I am sending my body on a roller coaster ride of highs and lows. The "junkie" in my secretly likes that roller coaster ride. Man. That is so not good. Now that I have aired my dirty laundry to everyone I can now share what the good doctor suggested that I do
Wean myself down to one -two cups of coffee a day but has allowed me to drink as many cups of Green Tea that I want. I have actually sworn off coffee for a good 6 months and drank tea exclusively and I was fine. I just happen to love coffee and I live in Portland for god sakes, the land of excellent coffee and coffee houses so I am just going drink my morning Stumptown coffee and be happy with that.
As far as my sugar issue, I am not getting enough Fatty Acids and high-quality protein in my diet so that I get that feeling of fullness and satisfaction. I am a bottomless pit most of the time and am hoping that by making the following small tweaks to my diet that I can battle my two vices and find balance.
The suggestions that the doctor gave me where to
Eat one serving of organ meat and one serving of traditional bone broth weekly. ( I opted to buy the supplement-- sorry I am not up for eating and preparing organ meat!)
Eat high quality protein at every meal such as cold-water fish, beans, pastured eggs, free-range poultry or grass fed
Cod- Liver Oil 1 tbsp a day
Add 2 tbsp of fresh ground organic pumpkin, flax, sesame and sunflower seeds to cereal, shake or other food each day.
Drink 60 ounces of filtered water daily.
Mindfulness- Meditation Practice 5x/week for 5-15 minutes
Slowly wean to 1 cup of coffee but drink as much Green Tea as I want!
He also recommended the Cataplex B and Drenamin (Organ Meat Supplement). Both supplements were under 20 bucks so totally do-able. The Cod Liver was a wee bit more expensive but the one supplement that he thought I would benefit the most from.
He was also excited that I got the Vitamix and loved the idea of my whole food smoothies so I got brownie points for that!
I was worried that the Cod Liver Oil was going to be disgusting but I bought the Nordic Naturals Lemon Arctic D Cod Liver Oil and it has a very mild taste and the benefits outweigh any taste issue I may have.
Plus it is
The easiest way to give yourself a sunny day from the inside out! Why? That's because Nordic Naturals Arctic-D Cod Liver Oil taste great and it comes with added 100% natural Vitamin D3. D2 which is added to many products is not the form of Vitamin D that your skin produces when it is exposed to sunlight. So Nordic Naturals Arctic-D Cod Liver Oil is like soaking up some sunshine. and like the sun, Arctic-D supports a variety of important body functions.
Cod liver oil is a wonderful nutritional supplement which provides multiple health benefits. It is rich in nutrients such as:
•Vitamin A: helps to maintain a healthy immune system, helps resist bacterial and viral infections, and beneficial for eyesight and healthy skin.
•Vitamin D: helps maintain strong and healthy bones.
•Omega-3 Fatty Acids: have anti-inflammatory properties which help relieve the symptoms of arthritis, improve brain function, reduce stress, prevent allergies, relieve asthma, and help with learning and behavioral disorders including bipolar syndrome.
•EicosaPentaenoic Acid (EPA): is great for the cardiovascular system and helps reduce inflammation throughout the body. Also works as a natural anti-depressant.
•DocosaHexaenoic Acid (DHA): is also a fatty acid which is vital for good eyesight, a healthy nervous system, and healthy skin.
Research has also shown that consuming 1-2 teaspoons of cod liver oil daily can help to prevent serious diseases such as cancer, diabetes, arthritis, musculoskeletal pain, kidney problems, and high cholesterol.
I was very impressed with Grain Integrative Health and plan to go back for a follow-up session.
Off to take the kids to Taekwondo and then to a very special restaurant that I can't wait to tell you about....