How To Recover Faster From Surgery

9293880_sSurgery is both amazing and traumatic. Surgeons can cut into us, take pieces out, put new pieces in, or repair something that is already there. And as long as there’s no infection, we actually heal, sometimes with only a tiny scar to show for it.

It’s remarkable, really, and a testament in part to the strength of your body’s healing systems. Your body really does have an incredible built-in healing mechanism.

There’s a catch, though.

The vast majority of people going into surgery are already in a state of reduced health. Even before the surgery begins, they’re sick,  injured, or somehow health-compromised. It’s why many are getting surgery to begin with.

What this means is that the way in which your body normally heals is also compromised. Healing is slower. Less effective. The surgery itself becomes a further setback that your body has to deal with on the road to health.

Beating the Surgery Setback
The body doesn’t heal without help. Healing requires certain nutrients – things like vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E and zinc to name just a few. All of these nutrients support the immune system and the connective tissue. If your body is even slightly deficient in these nutrients–from your condition, or from stress, fatigue, and poor diet–then healing takes longer.

There are two ways to tackle this, and both apply before and after surgery.

  • First, improve your lifestyle as much as possible. Giving your body the good food, rest, connection and movement it needs to thrive will make an enormous difference. Any doctor will tell you that healthy people do better during and after surgery.
  • Second, add a clinical boost to your efforts. Sick people have trouble accessing nutrients at the cellular level. That means even a great diet can still sometimes not deliver the things your body needs at the micro level where all the healing action is really happening.

Here at the clinic, we tackle the second approach using intravenous (IV) nutrients and professional supplementation to support your body’s amazing efforts. The goal? Faster recovery, less discomfort, better outcomes and fewer pain killers.

To learn more about how our pre/post surgery protocols work, you can book an appointment online, or call the clinic at 705-444-5331.

11 Healthy Snack Ideas for Adults

490832We love getting requests from our patients. Last week you asked you for more ideas on healthy snacks for adults.

To start with, in the wise words of our very own Dr. Shelby, “You want to focus on snacks that don’t mess with your blood sugar.”

To do that, you’ll want to:

  • Avoid carbs, sweets, chocolates or dried fruit
  • Focus on things high in fiber, water and/or protein

This approach helps stabilize your blood sugar, keep your energy and concentration up, and reduce your hunger and drowsiness.

Here are 11 we came up with:

  1. Nuts and seeds of all kinds (unsalted)
  2. Hummus and carrots
  3. Hard-boiled eggs
  4. Unsweetened Greek yogurt with fruit
  5. Cottage cheese
  6. Celery and nut butter
  7. Apple and nut butter
  8. Kale chips (recipe)
  9. Green smoothies (we love the MacroGreen product as a good cheat – available at the clinic or online here)
  10. Protein powder mixed with water or milk alternative (soy milk is high in protein)
  11. Edamame pods with sea salt

4 Hidden Causes of Headaches and Migraines

headacheHeadaches exist in a strange limbo in health care. Considering that they’re one of the most common health complaints in our culture, we’ve historically done a surprisingly poor job of fixing them. More often than not we suffer through them, or perhaps treat the symptoms, but we rarely address the causes.

Stress, fatigue and structural issues are an obvious and often visible source of headaches, but at the clinic we regularly tackle many other causes that tend to fly under the radar. Here are four you may not have considered.

1. Nutrient Deficiency
Deficiencies in many nutrients can cause headaches. With StoneTree patients, the biggest culprits are B12 and magnesium, but low levels of other nutrients can also cause problems.

We recently had a patient in the clinic who had a headache every day for 25 years. One Myers cocktail (IV treatment) to boost magnesium and the headaches vanished. Now, the patient can keep the headaches at bay with oral supplements, and an IV every six weeks.

2. Food Intolerance/Sensitivity
This is surprisingly common, and there’s much evidence to suggest that immune responses to the food you’re eating may be causing your pain.

We recently treated a mother and daughter who both had food intolerances, and both had chronic headaches. After four weeks of an elimination diet (removing the foods they were sensitive to), the mother’s headaches were 80% better and the daughter’s were gone completely.

3. Hormone Imbalance
Hormone imbalances are a frequent cause in women. Menstrual cycle fluctuations, menopause, and birth control pills can all affect estrogen and progesterone levels, which in turn can affect headache related chemicals in your brain.

Our clinical approach is generally to try to re-balance hormones using supplementation and herbs, and to assess for other underlying causes such as toxicity.

4. Toxicity
Toxicity can often cause or worse headaches. Your body has a remarkable ability to rid itself of toxins, but as toxins stack up – from our diet, our environment, or medications–the process of mobilizing those toxins and moving them out of the body can create headaches.

Ironically, many things that seem to help headaches in the short term, like caffeine or over the counter pain-killers, can actually make them worse in the long run by making you toxic.

If you’re struggling with unexplained headaches or migraines, you can book a complimentary meet-the-doctor visit here to find out if we can help.

What We’re Having for Lunch

Some inspiration for your lunch menu next week. 🙂

 – Tara

Kendra:

  • Wild Salmon Burger (Costco), quinoa, broccoli and edamame

Shelby:

  • Baked beets, Caesar salad with homemade dressing, and cauliflower soup (Suzie’s farm website recipe)

Tara:

  • Organic ground chicken, PC butter chicken sauce, peas – poured over 4 cups raw organic spinach