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BPA Free – Another Con Job?

Bisphenol A, aka BPA, has been implicated as an endocrine disruptor (affecting organs like your thyroid). In response, consumers have demanded that it be removed from products they use like hard plastic bottles. Over the past few years we’ve seen lots of stickers on these products proudly announce that they are ‘BPA Free!!!’ Many out there were happy to see this change.

For anyone who has listened to my lectures recently should remember that I warned the audience that this was likely to be nothing more than a con job. Did industry remove BPA from these products? Of course they did, doing anything less would have been lying. Were they being entirely honest? Heck no. No more BPA meant using BPS and BPF both of which I said were going to be just as bad.

This week, the journal Environmental Health Perspectives released a pre-publication article saying that “Based on the current literature, BPS and BPF are as hormonally active as BPA, and have endocrine disrupting effects.” People in the plastics industry knew that these replacements for Bisphenol A were damaging to the endocrine system and if they claim they didn’t, then, frankly, they had their heads buried in the sand.

Critics of the position that toxicity from chemicals like BPA is not a major issue relating to human health are cut from the same cloth that claimed that cigarette smoking wasn’t a major cause of cancer. ‘Humans are not exposed to that much on a daily basis.’ goes the argument. Former Washington State governor, Dixie Lee Ray once said about the dangers of excessive radiation, “Everybody is exposed to radiation. A little bit more or a little bit less is of no consequence.” She even dismissed the negative health claims of the victims of the Hiroshima nuclear bomb. 

While this may seem over the top, it is the reality of what we as consumers face. Denial, delay, and slight of hand like the replacement of BPS and BPF for Bisphenol A. Instead of using BPA free plastic bottles, use glass or unlined metal containers. Your thyroid will thank you later.

Next time, I’ll continue the discussion on electrolytes and health.

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TahoeFest 2013 – Practical Tools For Your Practice

 

Lake Tahoe Hyatt

Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe

TahoeFest 2013, to be held to the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Incline Village, Nevada on the shores of Lake Tahoe is shaping up as the go to seminar of the year. Hosted by yours truly, Mark Schauss, it will provide the attendees practical tools to help improve their practice. The prestigious group of speakers includes Luke Bucci, PhD, Ryan Bentley, DC, John Young, MD, Karen Hotchkiss, MD, and Mark Newman, MS. When the TahoeFest 2013 conference is over, you will be able to put all of the information presented into use the first day you are back at your practice.

Here is a run down on some of the topics and speakers that will be presenting at TahoeFest 2013:

Dr. Ryan Bentley, DC – Sex, Lies and Cholesterol and  Hitting the Target in Diagnosing and Treating Thyroid and Carbohydrate Metabolism Dysfunction

Dr. Luke Bucci, PhD – Joint and Arthritis Supplements and the Real Facts Behind Them

Mark Newman, MS – A New Paradigm in Hormone Testing: Diurnal Urine Testing

Mark Schauss, DBA – Advanced Ways to Utilize Laboratory Testing to Get Maximum Results,  Elite Athlete Case Studies, and  Safe and Effective Heavy Metal Detoxification Protocols

Karen Hotchkiss, MD – Reversing Rheumatoid Arthritis – A Case Study

John Young, MD – Reversing Type II Diabetes in 6 weeks

To sign up for TahoeFest 2013 just click this link.

For reservations and special room rates of $159 per room (this is an incredible deal for this world class resort), please use the link below or call the Hyatt at 888-421-1442 and say that you are attending the Lab Interpretation Informational Talk. Hyatt Room Reservations

The conference location is one of the most beautiful spots in the world. Come and spend some time relaxing in their indoor-outdoor pool or just take in the incredible scenery that is sure to make the trip a memorable one.

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Comprehensive Blood Chemistry – #1

The number one lab test to improve health, optimize body composition and fat loss is unquestionably a comprehensive blood chemistry. In my 28 years of working with lab tests and health care practitioners the world over, I have come to the conclusion that a comprehensive blood chemistry should be the cornerstone of every health program. There is more information that can come out of this test than any other one. The only caveat is interpreting the results which is something I have been researching since 1985.

So what does a comprehensive blood chemistry consist of? In simple terms, it includes what is known as a Chem Screen, typically a Chem 25, a CBC and thyroid panel. If you were to go to the lab for this test, chances are there are a few important variables that would be left out. The ones that are most often not included are phosphorus, uric acid, LDH and GGT. Other add-ons that I heartily recommend that be included are: vitamin D3, C-Reactive Protein, RBC Magnesium and Fasting Insulin. Put that together with my Lab Assist report and you will find out more about a person’s chemistry than any other test. Also, more importantly, it can tell you what to do to balance things out.

So why is a comprehensive blood chemistry so valuable? First off, in order to optimize health, you need to optimize the electrolyte balance of sodium, potassium, chloride and CO2. In order to have a proper flow of nutrients and waste materials in and out of cells, these four items must be in balance. Also, in order to have a proper functioning adrenal gland, both sodium and potassium must be optimized. Few health care practitioners know that a low CO2 is often found in people with low HCl in their stomach leading to poor digestion. If your electrolytes are out of balance, no amount of working out will accomplish weight control or fat loss.

In my lab and biochemistry classes (Sydney and Melbourne so far Lake Tahoe tba), I spend about 2 hours teaching all the incredible information that can be gleaned out of a comprehensive blood chemistry. Here are just a few tidbits I cover: low Alkaline Phosphatase is associated with low zinc which is an essential trace mineral. Uric acid is one of the most predominant anti-oxidants in the human body, too much and it indicates excessive oxidative stress, too low and you may not be able to handle oxidative stress. Also, a little known medical fact is that no one with Multiple Sclerosis has ever had high uric acid.

I could go on and on about how important and impactful a comprehensive blood chemistry is on health, body composition and fat loss but that is for the book I’m working on as well as being covered in my class. Still, keep coming back to this blog and I will share more as time goes on.

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Environmental Pollutants – #3

Environmental pollutants testing is an absolute must if you want to achieve the best body composition and lose fat. This first morning urine test, using dry strip technology is easy to do and does not need overnight shipping. The test results and the ensuing detoxification protocols has done wonders for the many people who have run the test over the years.

The toxins that are tested for using the environmental pollutants panel are the following: benzene, toluene, xylene, trimethylbenzene, styrene, parabens and phthalates. While you may not be familiar with all of them, you should be as they are powerful hormone disruptors and can disrupt energy production causing increased insulin and fat production. In my book, Achieving Victory Over a Toxic World, I devoted a chapter on how these toxins can affect the citric acid cycle (aka Kreb’s cycle). By blocking the entry point to the cycle (lactate and pyruvate) carbohydrate metabolism is greatly affected leading to an inability to create energy and shunting carbohydrates towards fat production.

An important glandular issue that the environmental pollutants can affect is thyroid function. A normal mammalian reaction to being exposed to a toxin is to slow metabolism. The thyroid, being an important organ that regulates metabolism begins to slow down metabolism naturally in the presence of toxins. It is this process that makes me cringe when I see health care practitioners stimulate the thyroid before they deal with any toxicity issues. This is highly detrimental to the long term health of anyone undergoing thyroid hormone therapy. The body is trying to slow down metabolism to protect itself from the detoxification process. During phase I detox, the chemical produced are often times far more toxic than the original substance. If the individual’s phase II detoxification process is impaired, as it is with many people, than you have a more toxic situation than had you left things alone. This is why testing for environmental pollutants is critical along with a urinary organic acid test which I will review next.

I worked with a clinic once that focused primarily on thyroid issues and they ordered quite a number of the environmental pollutants tests but all of a sudden they stopped. I could not find out why until an ex-employee called me to tell me that they stopped the testing was because too many people were no longer hypothyroid. This caused the patients to stop buying their compounded thyroid medication which was a major source of revenue. Money over health in this case.

Another important reason why this test is so important is the testing for the presence of phthalates. This plasticizer, which is found in personal care products, air fresheners and body sprays is a known testosterone disruptor. I once received a call from a large university in the Midwest of the U.S., asking me why they keep seeing so many young men between the ages of 18-25 whose testosterone levels were that of 60 year olds. When we started testing them using the environmental pollutants panel from U.S. Biotek, the results were predictable. Almost every man with low testosterone had high levels of either phthalates or monoethyl phthalates. Detoxfication was able to reverse the low testosterone over a period of time.

One toxin that has to be detoxified carefully is benzene. This petrochemical found in diesel fuel is highly carcenogenic. If you have a dysbiotic gut and you do not deal with that first you run the risk of increasing the toxicity and carcenogenicity of benzene. Using the Lab Assist report will help to avoid that trap and give you carefully researched and safe detoxification protocols.

At my seminars, I carefully go over the nuances of this test as it pertains to achieving optimal health as well as better body composition and fat loss. If you are in Australia, the two classes are in Sydney on February 8-10, and in Melbourne on February 15-17, 2013. The next U.S. seminar will be in Lake Tahoe at the end of April, exact date to be announced soon.

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Amino Acids – We Need A Balance of Them

Amino acids are the building blocks of life. It is what also makes up proteins. Many plants that we eat contain amino acids but our main sources of complete proteins (containing all the essential amino acids) come from meat and fish along with eggs and some dairy. Each food has a different amino acid make up. Because of this, we need to eat a wide variety of foods so we can get a balance of the essential amino acids we need to maintain good health. Why this is so will become apparent as you read on.

Science has shown us that there are nine essential amino acids that we cannot make so we must get them from our diets. They are – Histidine, Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Methionine, Phenylalanine, Threonine, Tryptophan and Valine. Children though have a few more essential amino acids as their systems don’t make them efficiently yet. These are – Arginine, Cysteine, Taurine and Tyrosine. Having enough of each of these amino acids makes it possible to build other amino acids and more complex proteins like collagen.

Collagen is abundant in bones giving it flexibility. It is also found in skin, muscle, tendons, eyes, blood vessels, the gut and between your disks in your spine. All your hormones and neurotransmitters require proteins. For proper thyroid function you need tyrosine, your brain needs glutamic acid and GABA in proper balance, and the list goes on and on. Of course, your DNA and RNA, the genetic instructions that allow for life are made of specific amino acids. As you can see, you need amino acids to survive.

One of the most disturbing aspects of today’s Western diets is how few foods we tend to eat. The typical American for instance only eats about 8 to 10 foods. What does this have to do with amino acids? Plenty! The old adage that we are what we eat should be apparent here. If we eat just a few different foods we will be getting a narrow band of amino acids. Some will be more than we need and some we won’t get enough of. If we continue this way year in and year out, we won’t be able to make some hormones or neurotransmitters or we’ll make less of them than we need to stay healthy.

To top things off, the foods we eat today, are different than what we’ve been eating for millennium. Cattle, chickens and pigs eat grains that they never ate before and that changes their amino acid make up. Grass fed beef for instance has a very different amino acid makeup than what you would find in grain feed beef. I believe that many of the health issues we face today are because of the changes in the amino acid makeup of our foods.

So how do we reverse this trend? Supplementation with a balanced amino acid blend. There are a few ways to go. One would be a cold processed whey protein shake like the one Dr. John Young has. Or you can try the amino acid complex I developed called Synerplex. Synerplex uses a collagen based blend derived from chicken bone marrow. But neither can overcome a bad and narrow diet. You need to eat more naturally fed or organically grown foods to stay healthy.

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