chiropractor Archive

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Stopping the Cold and Flu – An Update

The Cold and Flu season is upon us and, for those who suffer from fibromyalgia; this is a common time for deep fibromyalgia pain. But you may not have to endure such terrible fibromyalgia pain if you can avoid catching a Cold or the Flu.

I recently wrote about three simple things you can do to help fight off the cold and flu this season.  As a chiropractic physician, I wanted to add another list of three things that you can do to stop the cold and flu dead in its tracks. Here they are:

1)     Eat more protein! According to an article found in CNN Health “Your nutrition profoundly affects your ability to fight these diseases,” notes Katherine Tallmadge, national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. That means fill up your plate with lean protein, including chicken, fish and fat-free dairy products. Why protein? “The molecules that fight disease are made of protein,” Tallmadge says. (Protein is essential for the fibromyalgia patient too!)

2)     Drink a little more water! Stay hydrated with pure water and use water as your main beverage  as much as possible. Minimize the use milk, coffee, tea and/or sodas. When you start to become dehydrated the amount of blood available to circulate around your body decreases. This reduces the ability of the gut to absorb immune enhancing nutrients. Cells, including the immune enhancing cells, will function more appropriately and the lymphatic system removes waste better when properly hydrated.

3)     Go see your chiropractor! Your nervous system is the master communicator within your body. How on earth can your body’s defensive mechanisms work without proper communication? It can’t! Spinal care is essential to a strong immune system. Don’t believe me? Ask anyone with spinal degeneration how often they get sick, have headaches, experience fibromyalgia flare-ups, etc. Go see your chiropractor!

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Three Things to Stop Fibro Pain Due to the Cold and Flu

The Cold and Flu season is upon us and, for those who suffer from fibromyalgia; this is a common time for deep fibromyalgia pain. But you may not have to endure such terrible fibromyalgia pain if you can avoid catching a Cold or the Flu.

These three simple things may prevent the Cold and Flu season from attacking you and your fibromyalgia. They cost you practically nothing but are priceless jewels to your immune system.

Humidifiers

It has been suggested that low humidity may result in the weakening of the immune system. For those with fibromyalgia, this is a common reason for fibromyalgia flare-ups. You can help increase humidity levels by using humidifiers that add moisture content to the air of your room(s).

Humidifiers may assist you in other ways too. Dry and flaking skin, chapped lips and sinus inflammation are common in dry air conditions. Humidifiers can also help fibromyalgia patients with congestion and other respiratory problems to manage their symptoms.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is derived when human skin is exposed to the sun. This is why it is sometimes referred to the sunshine vitamin. Research has shown that it plays a key role in boosting the immune system. It does this by triggering the body’s immune fighters: the T cells! These powerful and necessary cells search out and destroy bacteria and viruses: the causes of the Cold and Flu. Scientists at the University of Copenhagen have found that Vitamin D is crucial to activating our immune defenses and that without sufficient intake of the vitamin; the killer T cells will not be able to react to and fight off serious infections in the body.  As a chiropractor, I have been recommending Vitamin D in my chiropractic clinic to my chiropractic patients with great results. Imagine, your fibromyalgia has a natural enemy and Vitamin D is it!

 Apple Cider Vinegar

I began using Apple Cider Vinegar several years ago. I had a chiropractic patient recommend this to me when I was suffering a cold. Since then, I have used it on and off; mostly in the winter time to prevent the common Cold and Flu. I truly believe that it works! I recall one Cold and Flu season where I was totally faithful at taking 1 ounce every night. I never got sick; not even the sniffles. As I researched Apple Cider Vinegar I learned that it is also good for many other health issues. It even helped my fibromyalgia I believe! Science has yet to “prove” any claims of vinegar’s medicinal properties but several research studies have found promising results and according to this chiropractor
“the proof is in the pudding”!

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The Important Role of Magnesium and Calcium in Fibromyalgia

The Important Role of Magnesium and Calcium in Fibromyalgia

There have been many research articles written about the important role of Magnesium and calcium in fibromyalgia. I am not going to attempt to add or replace the research findings but to explain why calcium and magnesium need to be properly given to the fibromyalgia sufferer. Too much calcium or too much magnesium can diminish the positive effects these minerals have in controlling fibromyalgia.

In my Mesa, AZ chiropractic clinic we recommend both calcium and magnesium to our fibromyalgia patients; but not equally in dosage and in every case! There is a reason for this. Even though every chiropractor learns the value and use of vitamins and minerals for the prevention of illness and healing of disease in chiropractic school, not every chiropractor is qualified to properly administer these. For that manner, neither are most medical doctors. So why is it then that if calcium and magnesium are so important to our bodies and knowing that there is an important role of magnesium and calcium in fibromyalgia, that doctors, chiropractic and medical, are not properly administering these minerals to their patients?

It’s complicated! But as a chiropractic physician, professor of nutrition and clinical nutritionist I will attempt to simplify it the best that I can.

Calcium and magnesium are essential minerals that are most often imbalanced in people suffering from chronic illness like fibromyalgia. When these minerals are not properly balanced between themselves, havoc can occur inside your body. For example, your heart rate can become too rapid, too slow and too irregular. Your heart can also beat too hard or too weak due to these imbalances.

When I perform a chiropractic / nutritional examination on my fibromyalgia patients I will most often take their blood pressure and pulse. If I find any variation from a normal heart rhythm and heart strength I can highly suspect that calcium and magnesium are imbalanced. (There can be other causes as well but that is another subject I won’t discuss here in this article.)

Calcium is responsible for the ability of the heart muscle to contact; pushing blood throughout the body. Magnesium on the other hand relaxes the heart muscle after a contraction, allowing blood to flow back to the heart. When a heart is experiencing a rapid heart rate, this can be due to too little calcium or too little magnesium. But if the rapid heart rate also has a weak pulse then I know that magnesium is dominant and that calcium is needed. Likewise, if the heart pulse is rapid and strong, then magnesium is needed.

One final thought: an irregular heart rhythm is often due to thyroid problems. Many fibromyalgia sufferers have thyroid issues too. The use of certain whole food vitamins like Vitamin B5, are frequently required along with the correct amount of calcium and magnesium to normalize heart rhythm and strength. When at all possible, seek out the advice of a competent clinical nutritionist, chiropractic physician  or medical professional before beginning any vitamin / mineral therapy.

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What is Chiropractic? Will it Help Fibromyalgia?

As a doctor of chiropractic and a clinical nutritionist with a practice in Mesa, Arizona, I have shared important information to friends, family, patients and students for years. Perhaps one of the most important pieces of the healthcare puzzle is to know: What is Chiropractic? And, for those with fibromyalgia, Will it help fibromyalgia?

To first answer this important question regarding chiropractic one needs to understand what a chiropractor is and does. According to Chirofind.com “Chiropractic is a branch of the healing arts which is based upon the understanding that depends, in part, upon a normally functioning nervous system (especially the spine, and the nerves extending from the spine to all parts of the body). “Chiropractic” comes from the Greek word Chiropraktikos, meaning “effective treatment by hand.” Chiropractic stresses the idea that the cause of many disease processes begins with the body’s inability to adapt to its environment. It looks to address these diseases not by the use of drugs and chemicals, but by locating and adjusting a musculoskeletal area of the body which is functioning improperly.”

“The health conditions doctors of chiropractic address are as varied and as vast as the nervous system itself. All chiropractors use a standard procedure of examination to diagnose a patient’s condition and arrive at a course of treatment. (In my Mesa AZ Chiropractic and Fibromyalgia Clinic this is what I do; and more.) Doctors of chiropractic use the same time-honored methods of consultation, case history, physical examination, laboratory analysis and x-ray examination as any other doctor. In addition, they provide a careful chiropractic structural examination, paying particular attention to the spine.”

The examination of the spine to evaluate structure and function is what makes chiropractic different from other health care procedures and providers. This is where those suffering from fibromyalgia are often shorted. If you have fibromyalgia and your doctor fails to properly examine the spine, your fibromyalgia treatment may be incomplete.

Chirofind continues “Your spinal column is a series of movable bones which begin at the base of your skull and end in the center of your hips. Thirty-one pairs of spinal nerves extend down the spine from the brain and exit through a series of openings. The nerves leave the spine and form a complicated network which influences every living tissue in your body. Accidents, falls, stress, tension, overexertion, and countless other factors can result in a displacements or derangements of the spinal column, causing irritation to spinal nerve roots. These irritations are often what cause malfunctions in the human body. Chiropractic teaches that reducing or eliminating this irritation to spinal nerves can cause your body to operate more efficiently and more comfortably.”

My Mesa AZ Chiropractic and Fibromyalgia Clinic also places an emphasis on nutrition and exercise, wellness and lifestyle modifications for promoting physical and mental health. My fibromyalgia patients are given a customized treatment plan that incorporates these things.

As a chiropractor and clinical nutritionist I do not use drugs or surgery. However, I do refer patients for medical care when those interventions are indicated. I also will work directly with medical doctors, physical therapists and others as partners in health.

So, can chiropractic help fibromyalgia? Absolutely! It can help fibromyalgia as well as many other problems too. If you live in the Mesa, AZ area and would like to see a Mesa, AZ chiropractor please call at 480-644-0644 or email us at clinic@drmlee.com.

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“Good Things” That may Make your Fibromyalgia Pain Worse!

“Good Things” That may Make your Fibromyalgia Pain Worse!

Are you aware that there are many things that can make your fibromyalgia pain much worse? Many of these are recommended regularly by medical doctors, chiropractors, therapists and through the media. I have listed some of those “good things” that have the potential to make your fibromyalgia pain worse. You will note that I put quotations around “good things”. I do this because there are certain drugs that I personally feel are severely over prescribed and are known to cause serious muscle illness and possible destruction. So I will begin by listing the drugs first.

Cholesterol lowering drugs, or Statins (Lipitor, lovastatin, Lopid, etc.) as they are called, are perhaps the biggest culprit of all! About 30 years ago, when it became the medical opinion that cholesterol was the cause of heart disease, accepted cholesterol levels was any number less than 240. After the Cholesterol Consensus Conference of 1984, anyone with cholesterol greater than 200 was now candidate for medication.  The panel of medical experts consisted of eight doctors who worked for the drug industry and one that did not. Since then the accepted level has dropped to 180. Here is the dilemma. You medical doctor is obligated to warn you if anything is considered “high” on your lab work. And, he must also recommend a treatment for the problem when there is an “accepted” treatment. Thus, your doctor now has to give you a drug that is known to potentially cause serious muscle weakness and / or injury when 30 years ago you would have been fine. Can you guess who really benefits from these lower levels? (Hint: it is not the doctor nor the patient!) And this is very important to note: when these drugs are used in combination with niacin or other statin medications, the risk of muscle injury dramatically increases to one person out of every 20!

Other medications too can cause fibromyalgia muscle pain and weakness to worsen. Ulcer medications like Tagamet, HPV vaccines, corticosteroids, NSAID’s, and certain antibiotics are known to cause muscle weakness and for someone with fibromyalgia, that is never good. This is one good reason to use a chiropractor who understands fibromyalgia and uses nutrition for healing.

There are certain foods or vitamin supplements that can cause fibromyalgia pain and weakness too. For example, too much calcium or improper calcium utilization can cause problems with the muscles. This means that if you take too much magnesium you may be at risk of worsening your fibromyalgia and every person with fibromyalgia knows how magnesium is a must for fibromyalgia. In addition, oxalic acid, which is present in too-large amounts in spinach, rhubarb, beets and beet greens, Swiss chard and chocolate weaken calcium’s ability to work in the body.

A low sodium diet is also known to produce muscle weakness. Has you doctor ask you to cut back on sodium?

The lack of Vitamin D may produce fibromyalgia pain and weakness. If you take laxatives, this may significantly reduce Vitamin D stores in your body.as your doctor told to to cut back on sodium

These are but a few things to consider when you are fighting the good fight with fibromyalgia. It is best to receive advice and counsel from your chiropractor, medical doctor and fibromyalgia groups who truly understand what fibromyalgia is and the multiple contributors to it’s flare-ups.