September 2019 - Wakunaga of America

Sherry Torkos Talks About the “Power of Probiotics” on Retro Television Network

Sherry also discusses Kids Kyo-Dophilus, and how beneficial probiotics are for children.

Click here to watch the full interview.

About Sherry Torkos

Sherry Torkos is a pharmacist, author, certified fitness instructor and health enthusiast who enjoys sharing her passion with others. Her philosophy of practice is to integrate conventional and complementary therapies to optimize health and prevent disease. Sherry has won several national pharmacy awards for providing excellence in patient care.

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

How Diaphragmatic Breathing Can Help Digestion

It’s hard to believe that something as simple as taking a few deep breaths can transform your body, state of mind, and digestion, yet science shows that it does. Deep breathing sends a message to your brain that has a calming effect. Deep breathing in it of itself can lower your heart rate and breathing rate, decrease your blood pressure, reduce muscle tension and help you feel less stressed overall1. The best part is that these breathing exercises require no special equipment or supplies…they can be done by anyone, anywhere, anytime.

The Power of Deep Breathing

As it turns out, there actually is a “wrong” way to exhale, and experts claim that bad habits in the respiratory department are more common than you’d think. “Breathing is something we do 15,000 times a day, so that what ends up happening is that it can become habitual in a positive or negative way,” said Patricia Ladis, a physiotherapist and certified behavioral breathing expert2. Many of our breathing patterns were picked up in childhood, she says – for instance, if you lived in a stressful home or had traumatic experiences at school, your adult self may be more prone to unconsciously hyperventilate or hold your breath when you’re in tense situations. Other people can develop disordered breathing in response to things like injury, pregnancy, or chronic pain.

When you start breathing correctly, there are a whole litany of benefits that you can expect to enjoy. One of the greatest benefits is that it can greatly reduce your anxiety. When you reach a breath rhythm of inhaling and exhaling for a count of five or more, it changes the nervous system, taking the body from the sympathetic nervous system (fight-or-flight) to the parasympathetic nervous system, which is the digest-and-rest mode3. The fight or flight response causes blood to move from the gut to the larger muscles, which interferes with digestion, weakens the immune system and increases inflammation. These changes don’t last long, and in the short term, they are not harmful and may even be helpful, but when they happen time and time again, they can hurt your health. The good news is that you can learn to “turn off” this automatic response through deep breathing. Taking slow, deep breathes creates a “relaxation response” that calms the mind and body. Abdominal breathing, also called diaphragmatic breathing, is one of the easiest, most effective ways to reduce muscle tension and stop the fight or flight response4.

Diaphragmatic breathing is especially helpful to those experiencing GI issues. Focusing one’s breath is an effective way to help the body to relax. When practicing this type of breathing, the stomach, rather than the chest, moves with each breath, expanding while inhaling, and contracting while exhaling. Some general benefits of diaphragmatic breathing are that it can lower the heart rate, increase blood oxygenation, bring warmth to the hands and feet, improve concentration, reduce stress hormones, and more. But for those suffering with GI issues specifically, diaphragmatic breathing offers specific benefits. Activating the diaphragm creates a gentle massaging action felt by internal organs like the intestines and stomach, which can reduce abdominal pain, urgency, bloating, and constipation5. This breathing can also help in these specific GI situations:

  • Diarrhea and urgency: Diaphragmatic breathing can help calm the digestive tract and ease moments of panic (i.e. I MUST get to the bathroom right now).
  • Constipation: Diaphragmatic breathing can be used while sitting on the toilet attempting to have a bowel movement, to calm and massage the system.

Quick Guide to Deep Breathing

Here is a quick step-by-step guide on how you can get the most from your deep breathing.

  • Find a comfortable, quiet location and lie in a flat or reclined position
  • Place one hand on your abdomen, and one hand on your chest
  • Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose into your abdomen to push your hand up. Only breathe in as deeply as is comfortable (your chest should remain still)
  • Exhale through the mouth and gently blow out
  • Your abdomen should rise as you breathe in and fall as you breathe out
  • Repeat these steps until you count up to 10

Taking calm, deep breathes is easy, and you can start now. It can take weeks or even months, to fully realize the benefits of abdominal breathing.  But take a deep breath and hang in there, because it’s worth it!

References

  1. https://health.usnews.com/health-care/for-better/articles/2017-01-05/how-to-improve-your-health-through-breath
  2. https://www.wellandgood.com/good-advice/breathing-exercises-for-better-health/
  3. https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/Breathing.html
  4. https://www.loyolamedicine.org/blog/breathing-stress-improve-digestive
  5. https://www.uofmhealth.org/conditions-treatments/diaphragmatic-breathing-gi-patients

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

Podcast: Sherry Torkos Talks Probiotics on “Beauty Inside and Out” Radio

In Greek “probiotic” literally means “for life,” but should we take probiotics for every ailment in our life? You may have been led to believe that probiotics are useful for everything from depression to weight loss, but is science revealing a different story? Listen to the full podcast with Sherry Torkos, to find out the truth!

Click here to listen to the full podcast.

About Sherry Torkos

Sherry Torkos is a pharmacist, author, certified fitness instructor and health enthusiast who enjoys sharing her passion with others. Her philosophy of practice is to integrate conventional and complementary therapies to optimize health and prevent disease. Sherry has won several national pharmacy awards for providing excellence in patient care.

About VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network

VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network is the leading producer, distributor, and online broadcaster of original live and on demand talk radio programming worldwide. We deliver hundreds of original programs weekly through eight branded channels: VoiceAmerica Variety, VoiceAmerica Empowerment, VoiceAmerica Health & Wellness, VoiceAmerica Business, VoiceAmerica Sports, VoiceAmerica INFLUENCERS , VoiceAmerica Kids, and VoiceAmerica Women.

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

Podcast: Dr. LaValle Joins “Wellness of Life” Radio to Talk Probiotics

Hundreds of antibiotics have become available since the discovery of penicillin. However, their overuse has contributed to drug-resistant bacteria that no longer respond to treatment. While antibiotics are a worthwhile and necessary course of treatment in many cases, they can produce unwanted side effects, and they can even kill off good gut bacteria too.

The overuse of antibiotics – especially taking antibiotics even when they’re not the appropriate treatment – promotes antibiotic resistance. According the CDC, up to one-third to one-half of antibiotic use in humans is unnecessary or inappropriate. Antibiotics treat bacterial infections, but not viral infections. Common infections that do not benefit from antibiotic treatment include: cold, flu, bronchitis, stomach flu, most coughs, some sinus infections, and some ear infections. If you end up taking an antibiotic for any of these infections, it will not help you to feel better, it will not cure the infection, it may cause unnecessary and harmful side effects, and it promotes antibiotic resistance. It is recommended to take a probiotic two hours from your antibiotic dose, which can help combat some of these unwanted side effects.

Click here to take a listen!

About Dr. James LaValle

Jim LaValle, R.Ph., C.C.N, a nationally recognized clinical pharmacist, author, board-certified clinical nutritionist, and founder of Metabolic Code Enterprises, Inc. a web platform and practice solution enterprise, launching AIR Support and the Metabolic Code Assessment.

About Dr. Susanne Bennett

Dr. Susanne Bennett is a chiropractic physician specializing in high performance health, allergies, clinical nutrition, anti-aging and lifestyle medicine, and is the bestselling author of The 7 Day Allergy Makeover, a step-by-step program providing clinically proven, natural solutions to eliminate allergies and restore vibrant health from the inside out.

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

Wellness Habits That Might Not be Making You Well

Sometimes, we think we are taking all the right steps to get “healthy,” when we are actually, unknowingly, making innocent missteps. Here are some common habits that, on the surface, appear to be healthy, but when examined a little closer, might be preventing you from achieving your health goals.

Overdoing exercise

Can there really be too much of a good thing, when it comes to exercise? As it turns out, that is a resounding yes. Too many trips to the gym, or spin classes, could actually be undoing all of your hard work, and that fitness goal you’ve been working towards.

Exercising helps you stay at a healthy weight, improves your cardiovascular health, and the increased endorphins can even help ward off depression. But it is possible to over-do it, and it can also have some serious health consequences. So, how does one quantify what is “too much” exercise? Well, it depends on things like your current health, your age, and your workout of choice. According to the CDC, adults should get around five hours per week of moderate exercise, or two and a half hours of more intense activity. And research shows that going way above and beyond that does not increase your health benefits1. So, while moderate exercise can improve your immune system, extreme physical activity can actually suppress it. This is something to keep in mind as you continue your workout regimen.

Taking too many antibiotics

Make no mistake about it, antibiotics are very important medications. They can prevent the spread of disease, and reduce complications associated with these diseases too. But some medications that used to be considered standard treatments for bacterial infections are now less effective, or do not work at all. When an antibiotic no longer has an effect on a certain strain of bacteria, those bacteria are said to be “antibiotic resistant”.

The overuse of antibiotics – especially taking antibiotics even when they’re not the appropriate treatment – promotes antibiotic resistance. According the CDC, up to one-third to one-half of antibiotic use in humans is unnecessary or inappropriate2. Antibiotics treat bacterial infections, but not viral infections. Common infections that do not benefit from antibiotic treatment include: cold, flu, bronchitis, stomach flu, most coughs, some sinus infections, and some ear infections. If you end up taking an antibiotic for any of these infections, it will not help you to feel better, it will not cure the infection, it may cause unnecessary and harmful side effects, and it promotes antibiotic resistance. If you take an antibiotic when you actually have a viral infection, the antibiotic will attack bacteria in your body, bacteria that are either beneficial, or that are not causing your disease. This misdirected treatment can then promote antibiotic resistant properties in harmless bacteria that can be shared with other bacteria, or create an opportunity for potentially harmful bacteria the replace the harmless ones.

[Another good reason to keep up with your daily probiotic supplements to help restore the beneficial bacteria!]   (or some short pitch for probiotics here…._

Excessive hand-washing

It is common sense that you should wash your hands before and after handling food, and after using the restroom. These things we know. We know that good hygiene is important, but did you know that being a germaphobe can actually be harmful to your health? Some people tend to wash their hands too frequently, which could post both immediate and long-term health problems.

The continued overuse of antibiotics has been an ongoing problem, but many don’t realize that these bacteria-killing agents find their way into soap too. As we frequently wash our hands with antibacterial soap, we are allowing antibiotic-resistant bacteria to form and thrive, which makes us more susceptible to illness3. Next time you go to the store, just remember that buying antibacterial soap is not necessary, regular soap is fine. Also, try to limit your handwashing to only when it is necessary.

Drinking too much water

No matter what medical issue you are dealing with, it seems like part of the advice is usually to drink more water. After all, all of the major systems of your body depend on water to work properly. Drinking adequate amounts of water helps your body to regulate its temperature, prevents constipation, flushes out waste, and more. What we aren’t often told about water is that you can have too much of a good thing. Consumerhealth.org cites that drinking more than 27-33 fluid ounces (about 3.5-4 cups) of water per hour can have negative consequences4. Overhydrating can lead to something called hyponatremia, which means that you are taking in more water than you’re peeing out. This makes your blood sodium levels dangerously low, leading to fatigue, vomiting, confusion, and headaches. There is no exact formula to determine how much to drink, as it depends on your age, sex, the weather, and your activity level…but you can keep an eye on the color of your urine. In a healthy person, pale yellow urine that resembles lemonade is a good goal to shoot for. Darker urine means you need more water, and colorless urine means that you are overhydrated.

Trying to develop healthy habits is hard enough as it is. And to think that some of these so-called “healthy” habits may actually lead to health problems is mind boggling. But if you notice that you have been practicing any of the overly “healthy” behaviors listed above, try and kick these habits to the curb!

References

  1. https://www.businessinsider.com/what-over-exercise-does-body-brain-health-2018-4
  2. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/consumer-health/in-depth/antibiotics/art-20045720
  3. https://spoonuniversity.com/lifestyle/can-you-wash-your-hands-too-much

This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.