Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian women. Precocious puberty is on the rise, where girls are reaching puberty as early as age 7. Most women will report that they experience PMS, have fibroids, ovarian cysts or heavy and painful periods. What do they all have in common? Too much estrogen!
Estrogen and progesterone are the two primary female hormones. They need to be in balance to offset the action of one another. Estrogen dominance occurs when there is an excess of estrogen and/OR a deficiency of progesterone. Thus, you can still have estrogen dominance with low estrogen levels, if the body does not produce enough progesterone. Although estrogen dominance can occur at any age, it is most common for women between 35 and 50 years of age.
Estrogen Excess/ Progesterone Deficiency Symptoms:
Estrogen Dominance Conditions:
Estrogen dominance is also commonly seen in MEN, with the following presenting symptoms:
Is there a way to test for Estrogen Dominance?
The short answer is there is no standard diagnostic testing for estrogen dominance.
The term ‘dominance’ may indicate that high estrogen levels should be detected on routine blood work. However, that is rarely the case, and most often estrogen comes back ‘within normal range’ because estrogen dominance is a functional hormonal imbalance and is not an ‘excess’ condition.
Conventional blood tests report on the total amount of hormones in your body, the bound and the free. However, it is the free hormones that are active and will do the job. Saliva tests only measure the amount of free hormones, such as estrogen and progesterone, which can provide some insight on estrogen dominance.
DUTCH (Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones) is a urine test that has been gaining popularity lately. It gives a lot more information about hormone metabolites and their function than other types of hormone tests. Therefore, it is able to measure all three types of estrogens – Estrone (E1), Estradiol (E2), and Estriol (E3). Estradiol is the most dominant hormone of the three and is the only one typically tested through blood and saliva.
If you suspect you may have estrogen dominance, you should speak to your Naturopathic Doctor, who will conduct a proper assessment and help you address the root cause.
1. Place the bones in the slow cooker. Add all remaining ingredients. Set slow cooker to low and let cook for at least 12 hours.
2. After 12 hours, strain the broth through a strainer or mesh sack. Discard the vegetables that you strained out. If uncooked meat was used to start with, you may reserve the meat for soup or salads.
3. Allow broth to cool. Once cool, remove the layer of fat that forms on the top and discard or save it for future cooking. Freeze broth until ready to use. It may be frozen for months, or kept in fridge for about 5 days.
Broth can be used in soups, stews, braised dishes, sauces, or gravies.
It can also be sipped as a warm drink, especially nice with a squeeze of lemon and a little sea salt.
After summer indulgences, many of us seek a way to get a boost of energy and well-being as we head back to our school and work routines. Fall cleansing is the perfect way to strengthen your system to deal with the coming change in diet and lifestyle that winter brings. Pre-winter cleansing helps to prevent the build up of toxins, optimize digestive health and strengthen the immune system, making those colds and flus go away faster, or not come at all. Here are some other benefits of cleansing:
Weight lossFor those of you who are excited to start your fall cleanse today, here are a few quick, but important tips to help you get started.
– Load up on Warming Foods. During the cooler fall and winter months, the body needs more warming foods (according to Traditional Chinese Medicine philosophy). Add a variety of warming vegetables to their diet such as squash, beets, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin. Onions, leeks, and chives are also great additions, especially in comforting chili and soups. Enjoy a warm breakfast, such as oatmeal, quinoa flakes or millet, instead of a cold smoothie or cereal.
– Spice up your fall with warming spices such as cinnamon, ginger, fennel, coriander, rosemary and clove. Natural spices are always better than pre-made sauces that often contain high fructose corn syrup, MSG, and other additives.
– Herbal teas count towards your water intake, so shop for a variety of nourishing detox teas such as milk thistle, ginger, dandelion, cilantro, and apple cinnamon.
– Switch to organic meat, dairy and eggs, as animal products often contain hormones and more pesticide residue than even fruit and vegetables.
– Choose organic fruit and vegetables. The most important to buy organic are; peaches, apples, sweet bell peppers, celery, nectarines, strawberries, cherries, lettuce, grapes, cherries, spinach, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers.
– Say no to plastic for storing food and liquid. Use glass and stainless steel for storage of food and beverages rather than plastic.
– Choose non-toxic cosmetic products. Skin is our biggest organ and it will soak in many of the chemicals that we apply to the surface. Parabens are particularly a problem and have been linked to cancer.
– Invest in a water filter, such as reverse osmosis, and an air filter for your home, particularly if you have pets, allergies or a home with carpets.
– Choose ‘fragrance free’ detergents and cosmetics, which naturally have less chemicals.
There are many cleansing programs out there, and it is certainly temping to get hooked on the latest and ‘greatest’ detox program. However, detoxification is a complex process and one glove does not fit all. Work with your Naturopathic doctor to create an individualized cleansing program that will be safe and effective in helping you fall back into your optimal health.
October 1 - November 30, 2017
30 DAY FALL CLEANSE Package
supervised by Dr. Tatiana, ND and includes the following:
- 2 sessions with Dr. Tatiana, ND and dietary coaching
- Take home resources including dietary guidelines, sample menu, healthy recipe resources and tips for eating out
- Customized detoxifying supplement
- 4 Infrared Body Wraps with Irina, Medical Esthetician
* Insurance benefits can be applied
Do you find yourself dreading summer months in a way you never used to? As the temperature is rising, are you experiencing your own internal heat wave? If so, you are not alone. More than 70% of women in peri-menopause and menopause experience hot flashes and night sweats, which can cause excessive sweating, flushing and chills.
What causes Hot Flashes?
Although the exact biological mechanism of hot flashes is unknown, there are multiple influences, including neurotransmitter imbalances, such as serotonin, and a decline in estrogen production by the ovaries. Low estrogen, combined with extremely low progesterone, signals the hypothalamus (brain’s temperature control area), causing rapid elevations in body temperature and dilation of blood vessels, resulting in a hot flash. Hot flashes can cause interruption of daily activities, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, feeling out of control or helpless, and lack of intimacy. However, you don’t have to hibernate all summer long. Here are a few ways to beat the heat.
Dietary tips to reduce Hot Flashes:
For a more personalized treatment plan speak to your naturopathic doctor. Menopause is not a disease, but a shift in your hormonal status. Mild to moderate menopausal symptoms can be successfully addressed with non-hormonal treatment options. Salivary hormone testing, offered by most ND’s, can help determine where you are in your menopause journey and the right approach can be taken to balance hormones. In my practice, which is mainly focused on women’s health, I noticed that the thyroid and adrenal glands play a big role in menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes. Ovaries, thyroid and adrenal glands are like the three musketeers, if one is imbalanced it will affect the function of the others. Addressing the root cause of your hot flashes will help to beat the heat not only in the summer, but year-round, and give you your quality of life back. Wouldn’t that be nice?
Are you tired of trying different diets, losing weight and then gaining it all back, and then some more?
Weight loss can be a struggle for many people. There are many ‘fad diets’ out there that guarantee quick results, but they are simply not sustainable long term and can be detrimental to your health and metabolism.
The key to achieving long lasting healthy weight loss is to adopt a lifestyle, not ‘the’ diet and to address the root cause of YOUR weight loss struggle.
A Naturopathic Doctor (ND) will typically conduct a thorough assessment, including some screening tests, in order to identify the root cause of weight gain or inability to loose weight. Here are the most common barriers to successful weight loss, and screening tests commonly used by NDs:
BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS:
When you haven’t eaten for hours, do you get ‘hangry’, a state of anger and irritability? Or maybe you get a headache, brain fog, feel dizzy, shaky or lethargic? These symptoms may indicate dysglycemia or imbalanced blood sugar levels, which have been linked to weight gain and diabetes. When we eat, our body converts carbohydrates into glucose and the pancreas releases insulin, which helps to transport glucose into our cells, where it can be used for energy. Insulin surge tells our body that we have plenty of glucose for energy, so we can hold onto our fat. Specifically, foods high in simple carbs will spike blood sugar and insulin levels quickly. Protein, fiber and healthy fats, such as fish, nuts and avocados, will help to stabilize blood sugar.
Screening tests: fasting insulin, fasting glucose, HbA1C, oral glucose tolerance test
HORMONES – “The Three Musketeers”:
The thyroid gland, which is largely responsible for your metabolism, can be underactive in many people. Common symptoms of underactive thyroid include; weight gain, fatigue, hair loss, cold intolerance, dry hair and skin. Hypothyroidism is one of the most commonly undiagnosed conditions due to reliance on only TSH and its outdated ‘normal’ reference range, failure to do the full thyroid blood test, and failure to recognize warning sings and symptoms of what could also be subclinical hypothyroidism.
ND Screening tests: Full thyroid panel (TSH, T3, T4, reverse T3, Thyroid antibodies), and Iodine Plus (Iodine, Bromine, Selenium, Cadmium – all play a role in making thyroid hormones).
Fluctuations in Estrogen, Progesterone, DHEA and Testosterone can also contribute to stubborn weight gain. Where you store fat on the outside of the body says a lot about hormonal imbalance on the inside.
ND Screening Tests: serum and/or salivary full hormone panel. Saliva contains unbound, bioavailable hormones, which are available to act on a target tissue and cause symptoms, unlike serum, which contains bound or ‘inactive’ hormones.
Cortisol is a hormone produced by our adrenal glands during times of stress. Cortisol spike increases blood pressure and heart rate, while also increasing our blood sugar levels, and therefore insulin levels, telling our body that it is time to store fat. Long term chronic stress and high cortisol levels can result in weight gain.
ND Screening tests: Salivary four-point Cortisol test – saliva is collected 4 times throughout the day, allowing for proper assessment of cortisol fluctuation and adrenal function.
A typical North American diet, as well as our lifestyle and increased use of antibiotics affects the microbial balance in our gut. The abundance of unhealthy gut flora damages the gut lining, allowing for partially digested food particles to enter the bloodstream, a condition known as leaky gut syndrome. The immune system reacts to these food particles and causes systemic inflammation in the body and weight gain.
ND Screening test: IgG Food Sensitivity test – over 200 food items can be tested against your blood to determine which foods cause inflammation in your body.
How many of you have a craving for sweets or carbohydrates? Do those foods make you happy, even if it’s just short-lived? If so, then you may have a deficiency in Serotonin, a neurotransmitter used by the nervous system to help regulate appetite, sleep cycles and moods. Lower levels of serotonin are associated with depression, insomnia and weight gain. It is particularly common for emotional eaters to have a deficiency in serotonin.
ND Screening tests: Neurotransmitters or organic acids tests
At MIM, weight loss goals are not only measured by weight, but also by BIA (Bio-Impedance Analysis). BIA measures your percent body fat, lean muscle mass, BMI, basal metabolic rate and overall cell health. This invaluable tool helps to properly measure progress by showing if weight loss is from fat stores or muscle mass.
Weight loss is often seen as a battle, but it doesn't have to be. A Naturopathic doctor will provide you with dietary education and address the root cause of your weight gain or inability to lose weight, after conducting a thorough assessment. This holistic and individualized approach is key to helping you achieve and maintain your optimal weight.
Dr. Tatiana, N.D. is passionate about helping her patients achieve their health goals, by conducting a thorough assessment and addressing the root cause with an individualized treatment plan, using a variety of naturopathic modalities.