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How to Avoid Skin Cancer

 

 

42711397 - sun, face, woman.

Here are the current stats on skin cancer reported in the media:

  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.
  • Almost 90 percent of melanomas can be linked to sun exposure and ultraviolet (UV) radiation, usually from sunburns not just from sun exposure.
  • Regular daily use of sunscreen (SPF 15+) reduces the risk of developing melanoma by 50 percent.
  • One person dies of melanoma every hour.

But are these claims completely true? Skin cancer rates are increasing despite sunscreen use and despite the fact that more people are spending time indoors rather than outdoors. So what gives?

Here are some truths you need to know about skin cancer:

  • The sun does NOT cause skin cancer.According to the British Journal of Dermatology, studies have already disproven this theory as it has been discovered that most skin cancer did not develop from areas or freckles created by sun exposure.
  • We need vitamin D to live, and regular full body sun exposure is the healthiest way to synthesize Vitamin D. Our cannot make vitamin D without sun exposure. According to the Environmental Working Group research: “Every major public health authority — the FDA, National Cancer Institute and International Agency for Research on Cancer — has concluded that the available data do not support the assertion that sunscreens alone reduce the rate of skin cancer.”
  • Many sunscreens are filled with toxic chemicals that have been linked to skin cancer. Even the best sunscreens pose certain risks.

So if sunscreen does not protect against cancer, then what does? The first question we all should be asking is this: is the rise in skin cancer caused by the sun?

Could it be that the changes in our nutrition, diet and foods or environmental factors such as bioaccumulation of toxins from body care products, sunscreen and other pollutants are the real cause of the rise in skin cancer?

The good news is there are many options available to reduce your risk of bioaccumulation of toxins and overall risk. It is first important to know what toxins contribute to skin cancer, what skin cancer is, the five skin cancer symptoms, and natural aids to your skin’s health. These topics will be covered in my next few blog posts. So stay tuned!

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post How to Avoid Skin Cancer appeared first on Betty Murray.

How to Avoid Skin Cancer

 

 

42711397 - sun, face, woman.

Here are the current stats on skin cancer reported in the media:

  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.
  • Almost 90 percent of melanomas can be linked to sun exposure and ultraviolet (UV) radiation, usually from sunburns not just from sun exposure.
  • Regular daily use of sunscreen (SPF 15+) reduces the risk of developing melanoma by 50 percent.
  • One person dies of melanoma every hour.

But are these claims completely true? Skin cancer rates are increasing despite sunscreen use and despite the fact that more people are spending time indoors rather than outdoors. So what gives?

Here are some truths you need to know about skin cancer:

  • The sun does NOT cause skin cancer.According to the British Journal of Dermatology, studies have already disproven this theory as it has been discovered that most skin cancer did not develop from areas or freckles created by sun exposure.
  • We need vitamin D to live, and regular full body sun exposure is the healthiest way to synthesize Vitamin D. Our cannot make vitamin D without sun exposure. According to the Environmental Working Group research: “Every major public health authority — the FDA, National Cancer Institute and International Agency for Research on Cancer — has concluded that the available data do not support the assertion that sunscreens alone reduce the rate of skin cancer.”
  • Many sunscreens are filled with toxic chemicals that have been linked to skin cancer. Even the best sunscreens pose certain risks.

So if sunscreen does not protect against cancer, then what does? The first question we all should be asking is this: is the rise in skin cancer caused by the sun?

Could it be that the changes in our nutrition, diet and foods or environmental factors such as bioaccumulation of toxins from body care products, sunscreen and other pollutants are the real cause of the rise in skin cancer?

The good news is there are many options available to reduce your risk of bioaccumulation of toxins and overall risk. It is first important to know what toxins contribute to skin cancer, what skin cancer is, the five skin cancer symptoms, and natural aids to your skin’s health. These topics will be covered in my next few blog posts. So stay tuned!

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post How to Avoid Skin Cancer appeared first on Betty Murray.

Intermittent Fasting – What You Need to Know

16738924_mWhat is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is the practice of alternating intervals feeding and fasting. The most popular method of intermittent fasting will be discussed in a later article, but for now, it’s enough to mention that there are differences between fasting methods, length of time of the fasting window and the placement of meals. The fasting period on specific plans can range from 14 hours to 36 hours. Though there are different fasting methods, each specific plan has benefits.

The exception for most people is the time in which we are asleep. When you’re sleeping, you’re fasting. Most people maintain a regular fasting period of six to eight hours per night until their first meal in the morning. The name “breakfast” literally refers to the “break” in the overnight “fast.”

What are the benefits of fasting?

It is commonly taught that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A study conducted in 2008 suggests that people who eat a calorie-dense breakfast will lose more weight than those who don’t eat breakfast. Authors of the study assumed that eating more calories in the morning results in less snacking during the day, and a reduced daily caloric intake overall.

First, there’s the improved insulin sensitivity that comes with fasting, especially when paired with exercises. More study evidence seems to support the notion that eating breakfast results in a slimmer waistline. There are some epidemiological studies that show a connection skipping breakfast and higher body weight. In fact, insulin sensitivity has shown to be better in those who eat breakfast in studies. I believe this has more to do with adrenal function, stress and hormone balance than the idea of fasting.

There are also hormonal benefits that lead to improved body fat to muscle ratio or body composition. Growth hormone has been shown to increase during intermittent fasting and may offset the effects of cortisol, which can lead to belly fat storage because it increases insulin resistance and fat storage.

This brings us to an interesting question about intermittent fasting. If insulin sensitivity isn’t higher just in the morning and it is really just higher after the eight to 10 hour fasting periods, then insulin sensitivity is higher when glycogen levels are depleted after a fast regardless of the timing of that fast if the liver glycogen will be somewhat depleted.

Generally, intermittent fasting does result in eating less frequently, which tends to result in eating fewer calories overall.

There is also a fascinating anti-aging mechanism of intermittent fasting. When you force the body to use another fuel other than glucose and fat, the body will use its own damaged cellular proteins for energy. When you eat again the cell will use the new nutrients to repair and replace the damaged proteins. This process occurs in short periods of times so the net effect is that the body cleans up cellular debris during a short fast.

But there is a caveat to intermittent fasting. For women, intermittent fasting may not be the panacea that we have all dreamed about. Many women find that when they intermittent fasting leads to sleeplessness, insomnia, anxiety and irregular periods, among a number of other symptoms and disruption of hormones due to the impact of fasting on starvation hormone regulation of leptin, cortisol, ghrelin and insulin. Additionally, women are more finely tuned to respond with physiological changes in relation to perceived starvation.

Intermittent fasting can be a mechanism to assist with optimizing health but it needs to be individualized to each person based on his or her hormonal and physiological stress levels.

Stay tuned for our next article in which we will discuss the different types of intermittent fasting.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.[/fusion_text]

The post Intermittent Fasting – What You Need to Know appeared first on Betty Murray.

Intermittent Fasting – What You Need to Know

16738924_mWhat is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is the practice of alternating intervals feeding and fasting. The most popular method of intermittent fasting will be discussed in a later article, but for now, it’s enough to mention that there are differences between fasting methods, length of time of the fasting window and the placement of meals. The fasting period on specific plans can range from 14 hours to 36 hours. Though there are different fasting methods, each specific plan has benefits.

The exception for most people is the time in which we are asleep. When you’re sleeping, you’re fasting. Most people maintain a regular fasting period of six to eight hours per night until their first meal in the morning. The name “breakfast” literally refers to the “break” in the overnight “fast.”

What are the benefits of fasting?

It is commonly taught that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A study conducted in 2008 suggests that people who eat a calorie-dense breakfast will lose more weight than those who don’t eat breakfast. Authors of the study assumed that eating more calories in the morning results in less snacking during the day, and a reduced daily caloric intake overall.

First, there’s the improved insulin sensitivity that comes with fasting, especially when paired with exercises. More study evidence seems to support the notion that eating breakfast results in a slimmer waistline. There are some epidemiological studies that show a connection skipping breakfast and higher body weight. In fact, insulin sensitivity has shown to be better in those who eat breakfast in studies. I believe this has more to do with adrenal function, stress and hormone balance than the idea of fasting.

There are also hormonal benefits that lead to improved body fat to muscle ratio or body composition. Growth hormone has been shown to increase during intermittent fasting and may offset the effects of cortisol, which can lead to belly fat storage because it increases insulin resistance and fat storage.

This brings us to an interesting question about intermittent fasting. If insulin sensitivity isn’t higher just in the morning and it is really just higher after the eight to 10 hour fasting periods, then insulin sensitivity is higher when glycogen levels are depleted after a fast regardless of the timing of that fast if the liver glycogen will be somewhat depleted.

Generally, intermittent fasting does result in eating less frequently, which tends to result in eating fewer calories overall.

There is also a fascinating anti-aging mechanism of intermittent fasting. When you force the body to use another fuel other than glucose and fat, the body will use its own damaged cellular proteins for energy. When you eat again the cell will use the new nutrients to repair and replace the damaged proteins. This process occurs in short periods of times so the net effect is that the body cleans up cellular debris during a short fast.

But there is a caveat to intermittent fasting. For women, intermittent fasting may not be the panacea that we have all dreamed about. Many women find that when they intermittent fasting leads to sleeplessness, insomnia, anxiety and irregular periods, among a number of other symptoms and disruption of hormones due to the impact of fasting on starvation hormone regulation of leptin, cortisol, ghrelin and insulin. Additionally, women are more finely tuned to respond with physiological changes in relation to perceived starvation.

Intermittent fasting can be a mechanism to assist with optimizing health but it needs to be individualized to each person based on his or her hormonal and physiological stress levels.

Stay tuned for our next article in which we will discuss the different types of intermittent fasting.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.[/fusion_text]

The post Intermittent Fasting – What You Need to Know appeared first on Betty Murray.

Can a Ketogenic Diet Clear Up Your Acne?

 

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Though acne is usually seen as a male hormone excess concern called androgen-mediated acne, in many cases it’s actually driven more by insulin, which will also make the other hormonal based acne from thyroid hormones or estrogen issues worse. It directly stimulates skin cells to produce more sebum and keratin but it also increases the secretion and bioavailability of other hormones related to acne.

Insulin affects acne-relevant hormones in these ways:

• Increases androgen secretion.
• Increases androgen bioavailability by reducing sex hormone binding globules (substances that bind to sex hormones and inactivate them).
• Increases IGF-1 bioavailability by reducing IGF-1 binding proteins.

All of these factors contribute to more sebum and more acne.

To date scientists have been reluctant to investigate the connection between diet and acne. However, some studies that show reduction in acne include:

• Reduction of dietary glycemic index (GI).
• Simultaneous reducing dietary glycemic index and increasing protein intake.
• Higher risk of acne in people who drink more milk, likely due to the lactose (a dietary sugar) in cows’ milk.

Acne – Not Just About Insulin

By now it should be clear that insulin is an important factor in acne, but it is certainly not the only factor contributing to acne.

Acne begins with oxidative damage (inflammation) to squalene, a fatty acid in sebum (an oily secretion of the sebaceous glands). Oxidative damage converts squalene into squalene peroxide, which is highly comedogenic, or clogging. Research has quite clearly shown that there can be no acne without initial oxidative damage to sebum.

Sebum oxidation leads to blocked pores, allowing bacteria to colonize in the pores, thus setting the stage for acne.

Insulin stimulates sebum production and increases the proportion of squalene. A reduction in insulin does the opposite. More sebum on your face that is being constantly exposed to inflammatory damage from UV rays, air pollution, toxins, etc, means more acne. Without sufficient antioxidant protection, sebum will suffer oxidative damage resulting in acne.

Clearly there’s a case to be made for using ketogenic diets to treat acne.

That said, not everyone with acne is insulin resistant. In some cases, acne is linked to PCOS or other hormonal abnormalities, while in other cases, it not caused by hormonal issues at all, but has more to do with the gut, lifestyle and stress. In such cases, a low-carb diet may be part of the solution, but repairing the gut and correcting an out of balance lifestyle takes precedence.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post Can a Ketogenic Diet Clear Up Your Acne? appeared first on Betty Murray.

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Upcoming Workshop: Meet the Team

 

Why Your Healing Must Start from the Inside – Learn the 3 Mistakes People Living in Chronic Pain Make, Leave Them STUCK!

 Meet the Team Workshop
with Celia Naple & Jenny Bair
Living Well Dallas – Monday, May 9th from 6:30PM – 8PM

In this introductory talk Celia Naples, CHC will give you tips on how a few small and simple changes to improve your diet can make a big difference in your inflammation and pain.

Imagine being able to walk pain free, getting back to the activities you enjoy. Now imagine that something you do everyday, eating and drinking, can put you on the road to a pain free life.

In this talk Jenny Bair, MHE, COO, will cover how to reduce stress so that your body and mind can heal.

This will be interactive, experiential for your senses and you will leave knowing how to heal from the Inside – out with more peace, laughter and joy!

To register your spot for this incredible night please call 972-930-0260.

The cost will be only $20.00 (a $290.00 value)PRC - Jenny Celia and Bredna

Goitrogens and Your Thyroid

Glasses of fresh organic vegetable and fruit juices. Detox diet. ** Note: Shallow depth of field

A goitrogen is a substance that suppresses thyroid function by inhibiting iodine uptake. Goitrogens get their name because of their tendency to cause goiter, swelling of the thyroid gland.

Some foods can be goitrogenic when they’re eaten in excess, or if the individual has a background of low iodine uptake. Goitrogenic foods include: cassava, which is otherwise known as yucca; soy products; millet; sweet potatoes; cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, bok choy; and most dark leafy greens like kale and mustard greens.

Goitrogens can actually decrease the uptake of iodine in the thyroid gland from other foods that we eat that contain iodine. When eaten regularly (a few times a week), or eaten raw, these foods can impact your thyroid function. Goitrogens interfere with the manufacturing of the thyroid hormone. Even if there’s enough iodine going into the thyroid gland, it can’t be properly utilized and no amount of supplemental iodine — either through food or supplements — will be able to overcome a large intake of goitrogens.

In the case of someone with hypothyroidism, over time, consuming high rates of goitrogenic foods, such as raw kale in green smoothies, can inhibit iodine uptake, actually making their thyroid condition worse.

For the individual with hypothyroidism, kale and collard greens are the biggest offenders. Other green leafy vegetables aren’t as high in goitrogens, and may not have such a severe effect on thyroid function.

Cooking method can also reduce the goitrogen content of foods. For example, steaming foods like kale, broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables can reduce goitrogen content by as much as 33 percent, which can make a big difference, especially if these foods are eaten regularly.

Top Goitrogenic Foods

  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Kohlrabi
  • Mustard and Mustard greens
  • Yucca/Cassava

Goitrogenic activity can be identified through lab testing, watching specifically for conversion of T4 to T3, which would indicate possible goitrogenic activity. Test TSH, T4, and T3 and again after a month to look for any changes in those markers.

Although green smoothies can be very healthy, for the individual with thyroid problems, consuming raw green smoothies every day is not a good idea. Rotating greens and increasing variety in your foods is best. If you do eat green smoothies, watch for a return of thyroid symptoms as a possible sign of excess goitrogens.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post Goitrogens and Your Thyroid appeared first on Betty Murray.

Histamine and Your Thyroid

Red wine pouring into wine glass, close-up

Histamine is an organic compound produced by the body and also present in many foods. Histamine is necessary for the maintenance of life and is involved in immune response. It is released by cells in response to injury and allergic or inflammatory reactions. There are four types of histamine receptor cells (H1R, H2R, H3R, and H4R). Each receptor influences different systems of the body.

H1R — Correlates with the heart, the skin, respiratory tract and uterus. It affects estrogen, mucus secretion, and vasodilation. Symptoms of histamine responses in HR1 receptors include: tachycardia, arrhythmias, hypo- and hypertension, pruritus (itching), red skin-flushing, urticarial (rash), sinus congestion and rhinorrhea.

H2R Correlates with the cardiovascular system and the gastrointestinal system. Symptoms of histamine responses in H2R receptors include: stomach cramps, diarrhea and leaky blood vessels.

HR3 — Correlates with the central nervous system. Common symptoms of histamine responses in HR3 receptors include: headache, ear ringing, vertigo, nausea, vomiting, insomnia and interrupted sleep, arousal, learning and memory.

HR4 — Correlates with bone marrow, immune cells and mast cell secretion. Mast cells are found in numbers in connective tissue and release histamine and other substances during inflammatory and allergic reactions.

Histamine Foods

Foods that are high in histamine levels include:
• Alcohol
• Pickled or canned foods
• Sauerkrauts
• Matured cheeses
• Smoked meat products
• Shellfish
• Beans
• Nuts
• Chocolates and cocoa based products
• Vinegar
• Ready meals
• Salty snacks or sweets with preservatives and artificial colorings

Histamine Intolerance

A histamine intolerance may signal a thyroid problem. Low thyroid levels can cause an increase in histamine production, whereas high thyroid levels can cause increased histamine receptors and a heightened histamine response.

Histamine intolerance is the result of an imbalance in the body system resulting in a build up of histamine due to the body’s inability to break it down. A healthy person can rapidly detoxify histamine by the enzyme amine oxidases, but in unhealthy or immune-compromised people with low amine oxidase enzymes, the aftereffect is a toxic overload of histamine.

Individuals who have histamine intolerance have diminished diamine oxidase (DAO), the enzyme responsible for breaking down histamine-rich foods. Alcohol and drugs can release histamine into the body and completely block the main enzyme, DAO from doing its job metabolizing histamine, causing symptoms such as diarrhea, headache, hypotension, and arrhythmia. Hives and other skin issues, nasal congestion, and, in extreme cases, asthma attacks may also occur.

DAO enzyme products such as HistDAO from Xymogen, taken with each meal, additional pepsin, vitamin C and B6 can increase the DAO activity and help degrade histamine.

Histamine intolerance causes a condition that many people with autoimmune disease have that’s called “low stomach acid.” Although the symptoms of heartburn and poor digestion are the same as high stomach acid, low stomach acid is a dangerous condition that can contribute to poor vitamin absorption and can lead to very serious problems later on.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post Histamine and Your Thyroid appeared first on Betty Murray.

Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies and Your Thyroid

Acai bowl - girl eating healthy food on beach. Woman enjoying acai bowls made from acai berries and fruits outdoors on beach for breakfast. Girl on Hawaii eating local Hawaiian dish.

Nutrient deficiencies are prevalent in our diets today due to mononculture farming, pesticides and herbicides and soil deficiencies. You might be surprised to find that you are deficient in quite a few of these vitamins.

Lack of protein in a vegetarian diet of a thyroid deficient person can also cause problems.

Vitamin A  (not carotene)

A healthy body should convert carotene to vitamin A, but an underactive thyroid gland is unable to efficiently convert carotene to usable vitamin A. Protein is also necessary to make vitamin A available to the body — if you are on a low protein diet, you may be deficient in vitamin A.

Vitamin B Complex

The various B vitamins are necessary for good thyroid function, and each one has a different role to play.

B1 (Thiamine)

The main responsibility of B1 — or thiamine — is to change carbohydrates into energy. B1 also aids in the digestion of proteins and fats. Thiamine is a sulfur-containing vitamin that necessary for the release of hydrochloric acid in our stomachs, which is required for the digestion of protein. In most cases of Hashimoto’s, low stomach acid is an issue.

B2 (Riboflavin)

Riboflavin is important for body growth and the production of red blood cells. It also helps with the release of energy from proteins. The lack of Vitamin B2 suppresses thyroid function, causing the thyroid and adrenal glands to fail to secrete their hormones.

B3 (Niacin)

The body uses vitamin B3 in the process of releasing energy from carbohydrates. It is needed to form fat from carbohydrates and to process alcohol. Niacin can also be used to improve cholesterol levels and lower cardiovascular risks.

B6 (Pyridoxine)

Vitamin B6 helps the body to make antibodies to fight disease, maintain normal nerve function, produce hemoglobin to carry oxygen in the red blood cells to the tissues, break down proteins and maintain a normal blood sugar. It is also the main vitamin to assist with zinc metabolism. Too much zinc depletes copper, and a copper deficiency can cause hyperthyroidism. Without B6, the thyroid cannot utilize its iodine raw material efficiently to make the hormones.

B12

B12 has a key role in red blood cell metabolism of your entire body, giving you energy, sharpness in your brain and healthy function of the central nervous system.

Vitamin C

Numerous studies have confirmed that people with thyroid conditions generally have excess oxidative stress and a deteriorated antioxidant defense system, and low levels of vitamin C were also found in many studies, confirming an association with vitamin C deficiency and thyroid function. Adrenal fatigue may explain why vitamin C is deficient people with thyroid conditions.

Vitamin D

When people with an overactive thyroid take vitamin D, it counteracts the usual rapid excretion of calcium, helping to avoid osteoporosis.

Vitamin E

Lack of vitamin E encourages the thyroid gland to secrete too much hormone, and too little TSH by the pituitary gland. People with an overactive thyroid often need to Increase intake of vitamin E to counteract the large amounts of the vitamin depleted from the system.

Calcium

Calcium is vital in preventing bone loss, yet many of us consume too little calcium in the form of dairy products.

Magnesium

Magnesium is required for the conversion of T4 into T3 so this mineral should be supplemented in people with thyroid conditions.

Selenium

Selenium is a crucial component of the enzyme that converts T4 to T3 in the body.  Without it, the right amounts of T3 cannot be produced and organs will function as if hypothyroidism was present, even though blood test levels are normal.

Zinc

Research has shown that both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism result in zinc deficiency. Zinc also plays a role in the function of a healthy immune system. Zinc is also needed to convert T4 into T3.

Many of these vitamins and minerals can be found fruits and vegetables, as well as other foods like dairy products, meat and fish. Talk to your doctor to determine if a supplement is needed to help you get the right amounts of each of these essential vitamins.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest; I’d love to hear from you!

Want more? Click here to get your free ‘Top 10 Secrets Why You Can’t Lose Weight’ and discover the real reasons you can’t lose weight and what to do about it.

The post Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies and Your Thyroid appeared first on Betty Murray.

Oxalates and Mineral Levels

Oxalate is a naturally occurring, “organic acidic salt compound” commonly found in foods of plant origin, such as berries, vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. Your body also produces oxalates by the metabolism of glyoxylic acid or ascorbic acid (vitamin C). Oxalate is normally excreted out of the body via urine, and sometimes the bowels.

Consistently eating foods containing high levels of oxalates can result in excessive levels of oxalates in your body. High oxalate levels can make it difficult for your body to absorb minerals and they are excreted via urine.

Symptoms of excess oxalate

If your body is not getting rid of the oxalates, these reactive molecules can cause a lot of problems for your health. Symptoms of excess oxalates in your body may include:

• chelating (a bonding of ions and molecules) with toxic metals like mercury
• painful or inflamed joints, similar to fibromyalgia or arthritis
• painful or burning urine or bowel movements
• leaky gut or other gut problems
• kidney stones
• developmental disorders in children, such as autism
• external female genital pain or irritation (vulvodynia)
• depression
• hives

Foods that contain oxalate can combine with calcium-rich foods or supplements creating oxalate crystals. These crystals can also form in your kidneys, joints, bones, blood vessels and even your brain.

Calcium oxalate stones can also form inside the thyroid, damaging the tissue and is associated with low thyroid function. If oxalates combine with iron, iron levels will go down and you will have oxidative damage.

High Oxalate excretion exacerbates many diseases such as fibromyalgia, interstitial cystitis, vulvodynia, depression, arthritis, autism and a variety of digestive disorders (which, in turn, exacerbate hyperoxaluria by allowing even more oxalate to be absorbed).

According to LowOxalate.info, leaky gut syndrome, in which molecules are absorbed from the digestive tract at a higher than normal rate, can cause hyperoxaluria. Hyperoxaluria is an excessive excretion of oxalate and is often seen in individuals who have calcium oxalate kidney stones.

While it can be difficult to say much about hyperoxaluria and other diseases due to a lack of research, many people have reported improved health on a low-oxalate diet and given the high amount of oxalate in some plant foods,

Symptoms of oxalate excess in urine

• joint pain
• painful urination
• excessive urination/bed wetting
• burning with bowel movements
• sandy bowel movements
• white or black flecks in bowel movement
• skin rashes
• brain fog
• eye pain
• insomnia
• anxiety/depression

If you think you may be experiencing problems caused by oxalate, here are some tips to help relieve your symptoms.

• Eat foods that are high in calcium or take a calcium supplement with meals. If you have a history of calcium-oxalate stones, take calcium citrate.
• Stay hydrated.
• Avoid putting large amounts of high-oxalate vegetables in your green smoothies.
• Do not take large amounts of vitamin C.
• Boil high-oxalate leafy greens and discard the water.

If you have a history of calcium-oxalate kidney stones or think you may have hyperoxaluria, limit oxalate as much as possible, add citrate to your diet (through orange or lemon juice, or calcium citrate), minimize added fructose and sodium, or try a probiotic supplement with Lactobacillus acidophilus, and Bifidobacterium lactis.

Betty Murray, CN, IFMCP, CHC is a Certified Nutritionist & Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with the Institute for Functional Medicine, founder of the Dallas-based functional medicine clinic Living Well Dallas and Executive Director of the the Functional Medicine Association of North Texas. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutrition for autoimmune diseases, digestive disorders, MTHFR and weight loss.  You can find her book “Cleanse: Detox Your Body, Mind & Spirit” on Amazon here.

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