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January 2018 – Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!!!! Many of you are now planning your goals for this year, if you have not already done so. For some, January is the time to reflect, catch up, decide what you want to accomplish in the next 12 months and then research the process to get there. When it comes to health goals, the first thoughts should include nutrition (your daily diet), movement or “exercise”, and mindset.

The holidays can take their toll on our health. I know it does on mine. Things were so busy and hectic in December, that I caught a cold 5 days before Christmas (from stress, lack of sleep and too much sugar), but with some good sleep, exercise, getting back to basics of my routine diet, along with some herbal concoctions, I was able to beat it in 48 hours and not allow it to turn into a full-fledged illness for 2 weeks, or longer. After all, I had family and a brand new granddaughter: Adelyn Shay Wolf- born (super healthy) on Dec 8th, 2017 to celebrate with, and not infect!!!!!

It is now common knowledge in the functional nutrition community that a healthy gut is of utmost importance in maintaining health, or in restoring health when one is out of balance. Improving “gut” health is the essence of healing and reversing body-wide inflammation, so common in what is bothering most of us. For more detailed information you may want to read my blog on LEAKY GUT: WHAT IS IT & WHY IS THAT SIGNIFICANT.

When it comes to disease, which is the lack of “optimal health”, we want to catch imbalances in the early stages, before they progress to chronic disease. By the time you start experiencing symptoms, your body is telling you that you are OUT of BALANCE, and need to make serious changes quickly, before you do permanent damage to the system that may not be reversible.  Think about any machine—like your car for instance. If your check engine light goes on, or you hear a loud unfamiliar noise, and ignore the warning, chances are you will find yourself with a broken down vehicle when you can least afford the timing or cost of repair, or worse having to buy a new car. Similarly, if you continually ignore body-wide symptoms, you may find yourself broken down, unable to function, or at an emergency room, or physician’s office with a costly and, at best, inconvenient diagnosis or at worst, a diagnosed chronic disease requiring extensive drug therapy, repeated medical visits and huge expenses.

Remember the quote: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This is the essence of functional nutrition.  The first place to begin a healing journey is to understand all the dynamics or contributing factors that led up to where you find your current health status. You want to know “the root causes” of your issues. From there, you can begin the “fixing” of those issues, leading yourself back to “optimal health” and resolution of those warning signals: symptoms.

This past year information has exploded on gut microbiome, or the community of bacteria, virus’, fungals and parasites that live symbiotically within our gut. That microbiome is delicate and can easily be disrupted with current lifestyle and dietary habits. An out of balance or unhealthy microbiome has now been linked with almost every disease process, including mental health AND immune function. Part of a healthy gut is a healthy microbiome; so stay tuned for more on gut health & microbiome in my future blogs.

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