Here are a few easy things you can do and they are in no particular order of priority:
1. Ask your doctor for a blood test to ascertain your Vitamin D levels. This is becoming more and more deficient as we limit our exposure to natural sunlight with sunblock. Vitamin D is important for your immune system as well as bone health. It’s very important for breast and colon health too. Some people do not metabolise vitamin D very well and need the prescribed version of vitamin D.
2. Get your Iodine levels checked. Iodine is thought to be the number one deficiency in the world and is vital for not just your thyroid health. It has many anti-cancer properties, not least of which is that it helps to program cell death when a cell is damaged or simply old. Without this important mechanism, cancerous growths can form. Iodine is also important for the correct metabolism of estrogen. Breast, uterine, ovarian, prostate and testicular tissue are all hormone dependent and we must all metabolise estrogens correctly (not just us girls). We can arrange the test for you. It is a simple test using saliva and/or urine.
3. Do you get enough Selenium? Our soils in New Zealand are deficient and therefore our diets are also likely to be lacking. Selenium works with Iodine in the body to protect our cells, working as an antioxidant to protect from the effects of free radicals (the bad guys). Food sources of selenium include brazil nuts, whole grains, organ meats and sunflower seeds.
4. Get your hormone levels tested to make sure that your estrogens (especially) are being metabolised correctly. We have more than one form of estrogen and as we now live in an environment that is full of xenoestrogens (estrogen mimicker’s from outside the body), we are bombarded by different forms constantly and our metabolism must deal with them all. Cost of the test is from $200 to $300 depending on the range tested.
5. Do regular physical checks which are of course, self-examination (looking/feeling for changes), mammogram (assessing the tissue), thermography (assessing the circulation to the tissue) and Ultra sound (scanning for unusual density in tissue). They are all valuable tools in detection and prevention.
6. Avoid, as much as possible, unnecessary chemicals in the home. Four handy ingredients will do many jobs – water, white vinegar, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Essential oils will fragrance your home in a more healthy way and many of them have antibacterial actions e.g. tea tree oil. Many household chemicals contain endocrine disrupting toxins – not good.
7. Protect the fats that you eat. Keep your oils, nuts and seeds in the fridge. Bake don’t fry. If the oil has started to smoke on the stove top, throw it out and start again – the fat is now damaged and dangerous. Cook with coconut oil as it has a very high smoking point and has many health advantages.
8. Eat as much organically grown vegetables as possible. Whatever you eat a lot of, make sure that it is organic or home grown, so you know what went onto it. You need plenty of antioxidants and the best source is lots of fresh produce.
9. Cruciferous vegetables are your friends! Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, bok choy, kale and even brussel sprouts are some examples and they all contain helpful elements which assist the body to metabolise hormones correctly.
10. Healthy diet and exercise are, of course, vital. Avoid those unnecessary sugars. Eat wholesome, wholegrain, high fibre, naturally grown foods. Get to know what is good for you and what isn’t.
Need more fibre? Eat more vegetables. Drink more water (away from meals) and don’t be scared of good quality fats. Still having trouble? Come and see us for guidance with dietary changes. Something we see regularly is a diet high in processed food and constipation. Did the food grow and is it still recognisable? Eat it. Did it come out of a production line mold? Avoid it.
11. How often do you go to the toilet? This is still a taboo subject of conversation (but it’s what I talk about all day and is important). The ideal transit time is between 12 and 14 hours. Aim for THREE times per day. Low fibre, high protein diets will cause slower transit times. Transit time is the amount of time it takes for food to travel the digestive system between eating and eliminating. Come and talk to us about any concerns you have. The colonic system we have at Inside health is the LIBBE system and this style of colonic will exercise the colon and strengthen the ability to eliminate, but diet and lifestyle often need addressing as well.
12. Understand your immune system. When we talk about immunity, it is not just in reference to how many colds you get a year. It is an incredibly clever system which is constantly surveying the body for anything ‘alien’ which needs to be dealt with, including abnormal growths. A healthy digestive system will support a healthy immune system, as most of your immunity is based in your gut
13. Get those amalgam fillings removed. There is more and more evidence on the hazards of mercury (and other heavy metals) and the negative implications to our health. Many dentist are now removing old fillings by the quadrant (quarter of your mouth at a time). It is important that you get them removed in the correct way with a mouth dam to stop anything being swallowed and a separate air source for you, as it is the vapour created during drilling that is considered the most dangerous. Also ask about other options to any root canal recommendations. Get as much information as you can before agreeing to any major work. Have regular checks. Oral hygiene has many implications on cardiovascular health as well.
14. Worried about past toxin exposure? There are tests available to check for heavy metals and ways to detoxify them and pesticides etc. Colonic hydrotherapy and sauna therapy are both valuable tools when used as an adjunct to other detoxification approaches. Talk to us about the best approach for you.
This list is a very simplified version of very important information. If you are worried about anything, if this list has got you thinking about changes you could make, or you simply want more information, phone us at Inside Health to talk things over in more depth to work out the best approach for you.