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How Inflammation May Play a Role in Autism Spectrum Disorder

While researchers do not yet know why, they doknow that the rate of autism is increasing. According to the 2018 Report of the National Autism Spectrum Disorder Surveillance System, an estimated 1 in 66 children have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).[i] ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder and refers to a range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviours, speech, and nonverbal communication, as well as by unique strengths and differences.[ii] There is not one form of autism but rather many types, caused by different combinations of genetic and environmental influences.[iii] Currently, physicians diagnose the neurodevelopmental

Joint Health – Beyond the Basics

When it comes to joint health the conversation often centers around structural support – reinforcing, lubricating, and soothing the joint space. Healthy joints are protected and cushioned by layers of connective tissue called cartilage that allows them to move freely without any grinding or contact between the bone surfaces themselves.  A special fluid in the joint capsule, called synovial fluid, is also extremely important for joint function. It acts as a natural lubricant and cushions joint movement. In conditions such as osteoarthritis, injury, and even in aging, there is a reduction in synovial fluid and a loss of cartilage that

Reducing Allergy Inflammation

“Ahhh, the fresh scent of spring!!!” “Hmm, that yummy peanut butter and jelly sandwich!!! “ For most of us, the above statements are a thing of joy, the beginning of something exciting, however, for some, the coming of spring, the presence of an allergen like peanuts or other allergens are not as exciting and result in a battle of itches, hives, stuffy noses and in some cases, more serious anaphylactic reactions. If you’re unaware of a sensitvity, you might find yourself stating the following; “Oops, where did these hives come from?” “Oh Goodness, why is my nose runny and itchy

P.E.A.k Pain Relief

The endocannabinoidome (eCBome) is a broader and more appropriate term than the old endocannabinoid system (ECS), and incorporates the more recent research into this fascinating area. What is the eCBome Briefly, eCBome is a protective, and communication network that exists all over the body, and interacts with hormonal, nervous, immune, endocrine, microbiome, and other systems of the body. The eCBome plays a major role in the health and disease of many organs of the body including; the reproductive system in both males and females, hormonal system, kidneys, liver, gut microbiome, heart and circulatory system, nervous system, skin among other tissues.

Inflammation and Disease

More and more studies are showing the potentially damaging effects of chronic inflammation and its link to the development of various serious chronic diseases. Research has now identified chronic inflammation as a factor in the progression of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease, along with many others! The link between inflammation and these diseases is discussed in the following sections. Inflammation and Cancer In his 1971 State of the Union address President Richard Nixon pledged “I will ask for an appropriation of an extra $100 million to launch an extensive campaign to find a cure to cancer. Let us

Inflammation: A Double Edged Sword

Understanding Inflammation Inflammation is a double-edged sword; it plays an important and beneficial role in the body, but it can also be very dangerous, causing damage to the body and ultimately leading to disease and even death! Whether inflammation will be beneficial or harmful depends on its type and duration. In general, there are two distinct categories of inflammation: acute or short term inflammation and chronic or long term inflammation. While short term inflammation plays a beneficial role in the body, long term or chronic inflammation can be very harmful. These harmful effects will be examined in more detail in

Top Five Ways to Help Control Your Seasonal Allergies

Almost one-quarter of Canadians suffer from seasonal allergies or allergic rhinitis. Allergy season can last (depending on geographic location) in Canada anywhere from early February (mostly the west coast) to the first frost of the year (October – November, depending on region). Certain allergies are also seasonally dependent and are at their prime at different times of year. With it currently being late summer and entering into fall, typically ragweed is the chief culprit for allergy sufferers. The plant produces large amounts of pollen and releases it super quickly. Ragweed likes to grow in disturbed soil, which is typically soil

Healthy Bones: It’s More than Just Calcium

Most people know that adequate calcium intake is essential for healthy bone formation. Since calcium is the primary mineral found in bones, it has been added to many foods in order to ensure our population does not have a deficiency. For decades marketing campaigns by dairy farmers and family doctors have been advocating high levels of calcium in order to build bones and prevent osteoporosis. In 2011, the benefits of calcium were called into question when a research study found that calcium supplementation was linked to a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes (1). This news sent shock-waves through

Give Your Blood Vessels Some TLC!

Many people in North America suffer from diabetes, obesity and heart disease. One of the key underlying factors in all of the above conditions is inflammation and damage at the level of the blood vessel lining. The good news is that a diet high in antioxidants such as vitamin C actually protects against these damaging effects. While diet is essential, especially for prevention, it sometimes is not enough to counteract established disease processes. Luckily vitamin C provides a simple solution. Vitamin C is most well-known for its use to combat colds, but a recent large-scale review study confirmed that 500mg of vitamin

Whey Protein and Cancer: Friend or Foe?

One of the most controversial questions in the integrative oncology field is whether cancer patients should avoid whey protein. Some people contend that dairy products may increase the growth of cancer cells since they contain amino acids and growth factors. Dairy products do contain a molecule called insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1), which has the same activity as the naturally produced human form. As a clinician, I recommend that patients avoid any foods that will up-regulate growth factors since that may contribute to the growth of cancer cells.1 So, as part of an anti-cancer diet it would be prudent to avoid

Spring Has Sprung – Have Your Allergies Sprung Too?

With the start of spring come the blooms and blossoms and that pesky partner in crime – pollen! Seasonal allergies affect millions of Canadians (approx. 10 million) each year, and many will dash to the pharmacy in search of antihistamine medication so they don’t drip, itch and sneeze their way through springtime.  While the viral load at the start of spring can still be high depending upon the region, the differences between allergy symptoms (below) and cold symptoms generally are as follows: No fever or muscle aches Mucous secretions are typically clear and runny Sneezing is common in rapid, multiple

The Pros and Cons of Protein Powders: Plant vs Whey

We all know how important adequate protein intake is for good health. Just to put everyone on the same page, here are the main benefits of protein in general. Provides amino acids for muscle repair Protein with each meal balances blood sugar which can aid in healthy weight loss Amino acids from protein are used to make immune cells and neurotransmitters Despite our best efforts, most people do not get enough protein from dietary sources alone or we tend to rely on animal proteins that are rich in saturated fats and acidifying amino acids. To maintain muscle building and prevent

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