Well! Here we are on the very brink of the holiday season. I am sure we all have much to be thankful for and are looking forward to extra time with friends and family.
We are also all quite aware of the increased stress of the season, the increased eating and the tendency to decreased exercise, so please be sure to read my infamous Holiday Eating Tips and Tricks below. You will get some very valuable information and hopefully a few laughs.
Each October for the past 5 years I have participated in the Santa Barbara Century. Well, this year I cheated a bit and did the Metric Century: 100 kilometers rather than miles. 63 miles, as it turned out. I wasn't quite in shape for the full century and made the wise choice to take the shortcut.
I may make this choice more often. As I said to my riding partner, "This is actually civilized!" We started at 8:00 rather than 7:00, and we were done by 1:00 rather than 4:00. I still had half a day ahead of me and didn't feel wiped out. It was a beautiful day. Best of all, we rode for a great cause, raising about $50k for charities that included everything from education for impoverished children in Africa, to providing bikes, bike helmets and bike training to the children of Santa Barbara. We also supported the local Safe Routes to School program.
I'm already looking forward to next year's. We'll see whether it's miles or kilometers.
The Infection Season has been in full force already this year. Mostly it has come in waves of activity, followed by temporary lulls. Be cautious with the holiday eating that's on its way, as well as the change to colder and hopefully wetter weather. There will most certainly be another infection spike soon.
The good news is that our Immune Protocol has been very effective so far. The very best thing to do is have the key products on hand and get right on the protocol at the first sign of infection, and stay on it for at least a week past your last symptom. Patients who stop their protocol too soon have had some return of symptoms.
If you get a sinus infection, please call for an appointment ASAP, as these are the most challenging of the infections and often require some special protocol changes.
If you missed it last month here is the link to my Immune Protocol Refrigerator Page, which will help you know what to do right away. Please be sure to open the attachment, print it out and place it on your refrigerator.
Important Note: If you feel your immune system is not as strong as you would like it to be, please call for an appointment ASAP. During your appointment I can specifically assess what you can do to strengthen your immune system, thereby increasing your resistance to the bugs that are coming our way. We have some new products that are great for this situation.
This is the title of a recent article by Dr. David Perlmutter, noted neurologist and the author of Grain Brain. DHA is an omega-3 fatty acid that plays a central role in brain health, and which our OmegaPure 900 EC is very high in. DHA has a direct effect on a very important growth hormone called BDNF, which promotes nerve growth and health.
As Dr. Perlmutter summarizes, "In a recent report from the Easton Center for Alzheimer's Disease Research, researchers evaluated the level of DHA in red blood cells in a group of over 1500 men and women aged 67 ± 9 years who were dementia free . The study then measured the size of their brains, and evaluated their brains by doing MRI scans to look for small strokes. In addition, the subjects underwent a variety of cognitive assessments."
"The results of the study were really quite profound. Those individuals having the lowest levels of DHA had significantly lower total brain volume as well as significantly greater levels of small strokes in their brains compared to individuals with higher levels of DHA. Beyond these findings, those with the lowest levels of DHA performed worse on tests of both visual memory and executive function as well as on tests designed to evaluate abstract thinking."
DHA is a critical omega-3 fatty acid. As with EPA, it is very important for brain health as well as cardiovascular health. It has strong anti-inflammartory properties for both our neurological and cardiovascular systems, as well as being healthy for our eyes, skin, immune system, mood and muscles. It is arguably the most powerful nutrient for reducing the risk of chronic health problems and early death. Dr. Perlmutter recommends 800mg per day for brain health, which is what two OmegaPure900 EC capsules contain. This is also the amount that provides healthy heart levels for 90% of our patients. Occasionally a patient will need 3 per day for maximum heart protection.
Let's be sure to save that brain and heart of yours, and my contribution toward that end is a 10% discount on our Omega Pure 900EC, the highest quality and best caplet form of EPA and DHA I have found yet. So, from now until the end of the year, get a bottle of Omega Pure 900EC for $37.80 vs. the normal price of $42.00!
Once again we are fast approaching the one meal of the year that Americans most commonly associate with "Being Stuffed." Yes, that feeling that you can barely move. The only thing most people can do after this meal is sit in a large chair and try to keep their eyes open for more than ten minutes.
The good news is there is a simple solution that allows you to have your cake (rather, pie) and eat it, too. Here are the keys to surviving Thanksgiving without feeling like a "Stuffed Turkey" yourself and without gaining any significant amount of fat!
1. Make sure the meal has lots of different tasty veggies that you love. I like to do variations on the traditional themes. For instance, I often make a mix of roasted onions with a balsamic glaze instead of the usual creamed onions.
2. If you are having wine or other alcohol on this day, wait to have some of your meal before starting in on your "drink of choice," or at least have an appetizer first. Drinking before you start eating will go right to your head, which will greatly increase your odds of losing all dietary control. A little food in your stomach first, plus some self control regarding how much you drink, and you are much more likely to stay "un-sauced and un-stuffed." Another valuable tip if imbibing is to drink a glass of water after every glass of alcohol.
3. At mealtime, first eat a lot of the foods you know to be healthy and not weight gaining: turkey and all the different veggies, salad, etc.... Be sure to fill up on these before you move on to the stuffing, potatoes and dessert. This way you can have some high-carb foods, but the amounts will be relatively small. On the other hand, if you start out with the stuffing, you will end up stuffed. You will also eat less of the foods that keep you slim and trim.
4. If at all possible, try to get the gang to go for a walk after the meal. Even a 15 - 20 minute walk will help refresh you and keep you from falling into a deep slumber. I promise that if you try this you will feel better afterward, and you'll be glad you did it. If the gang doesn't want to go, grab one other smart soul or go it alone!! This can also be a great excuse to escape from any of those relatives you can only take so much of.
5. The most important key to preventing this meal from becoming the beginning of a major weight-gaining marathon, is to stock up on Ziploc bags and "Send All The Carb-Loaded Leftovers Home With Your Guests!" Yes, this is a cruel punishment for them, but they probably won't mind unless they're a Dr. Dale patient also, which of course they should be! One bad meal, even if it leaves you stuffed, will only do temporary harm. Keeping the fridge filled with calorie-rich carbs is a sure sentence to weight gain.
6. What you do on Thanksgiving is not nearly as important as what happens in the next few days. Either T-Day is the beginning of trouble, or it's a one-day blip on the scale. Here's a treat that can actually turn Thanksgiving into a starting point for losing a couple of quick pounds. Now there's a healthy concept and one of the smartest things you can do for your "holiday health!" Take your leftover bones, make some great turkey stock (the longer and slower you simmer the stock the better) and then turn the leftover turkey into delicious turkey-vegetable soup, which you can eat for days and lose weight while eating it! In fact, if you follow this link and log into my website, you will find Dr. Dale's Recovery and Rejuvenation Soup Recipe. Use the leftover turkey as your protein in the soup and you will be on your way to a lot of quick, easy and healthy meals for days to come.
7. Follow these same general guidelines for the rest of your holiday meals and parties, then come the beginning of the year you will have maintained your weight or possibly even lost some. What a great gift to yourself! These tips are best printed out and put on your refrigerator for all your guests to read. I hope this helps. It certainly was fun for me.
"A man (or a women) is not old until regrets take the place of Dreams."
John Barrymore (parenthesis my edit)
I have much to be thankful for and on the top of that list is the opportunity to help so many, who are choosing health over disease. Many, many carrying and dedicated patients makes for a very grateful and thankful Dr. Dale!