What You Eat Is Making Your Anxiety Worse

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Today I wanted to share some foods that are medically proven to worsen anxiety, and some foods found to help lift anxiety.

 

Did you know treating anxiety actually adds years to your life span?

More on that in a moment.

But first, let’s not worsen or trigger your underlying anxiety with the wrong foods.

Nutritional psychiatry is a real thing — using nutrition to treat mood disorders can transform your life and make huge shifts in your ability to function and even thrive, despite having a predisposition towards anxiety.

 

Two foods that might be worsening your anxiety:

 

 

1.  Gluten —

This medical study followed anxiety in patients with celiac disease after being placed on a celiac free diet.

Researchers followed these patients for an entire year, and found the rate of anxiety dropped significantly… from 72% of patients having high levels of anxiety at baseline down to only 25% of patients having anxiety after going gluten free.

The control group had no change in anxiety levels after a year, and interestingly, depression rates did not change at all.  This transformative lessening of anxiety after going gluten free was very impressive and suggests that a gluten free diet can improve anxiety, but may not impact depression.

Although now we need continued research to see if the same reduction in anxiety is true for non-celiac patients, I can completely understand why gluten might trigger anxiety and why going gluten free may help alleviate it.  As I reported years ago that gluten is an irritant to the central nervous system and can even induce brain fog and add to dementia risk.  Read more on that here.

 

2.  Sugar —

A huge meta-analysis correlated blood sugar control in diabetics with anxiety.

Researchers found that when patients were hyperglycemic, they had significant spikes in anxiety levels.

This after research in vivo showed that rats who binged on sugar became anxious and rats fed sucrose had significantly more anxiety than rats fed honey. 

Again, it would be very helpful to have more medical studies confirm if this reduction in anxiety happens with non-diabetic patients, but since sugar is so inflammatory for the body and immune suppressive as well, reduce sugar as much as possible and see if this helps reduce your anxiety levels too!

 

 

Two foods that can help relieve anxiety:

 

 

1.  Fish —  

As I blog about here, omega 3 fatty acids offer a calming effect on the brain.

In fact, this medical study showed that taking Omega 3 fatty acid supplements dropped anxiety rates by 20%!

Krill oil (like this high quality supplement) is an easy way to boost your intake of Omega 3s.

 

 

2.  Fermented foods & probiotics —

As I blog about here, the link between the body and mind starts in our gut.

In fact, this interesting study showed that patients who ate fermented foods actually lessened social anxiety.

If you don’t enjoy yogurt, kefir, kombucha or fermented foods routinely, get started on a high quality probiotic supplement like this one.

 

And a few more tips about eating:

 

 

1.  Eat regularly —

I’ve found in my past 17 years of practicing medicine that patients who do not eat consistently and routinely have more anxiety and even panic attacks when they are skipping meals and/or not eating enough grounding protein and healthy fats.

If you tend to get panic or anxiety symptoms, look over your eating habits and be certain you are actually getting enough protein and healthy fats to keep your body feeling grounded and stable.

Make sure your home and work areas have nutrient dense foods such as nuts, cheese, yogurt, nutritional rich veggies like avocado and coconut, chia seeds, granola bars with nuts and seeds in them, and other easy to grab foods.  Start your day with an egg or other protein rich food.

Don’t skip breakfast!

2.  Hydrate fully —

The symptoms of dehydration can give you the same symptoms as anxiety — racing heartbeat, cloudy thinking, overwhelm, muscle fatigue, etc…

If you feel anxiety coming on, take a few deep breaths and drink a big glass of clean filtered water.

 

 

3.  Make sure you are getting enough minerals, especially magnesium.

Just like with dehydration, being mineral deficient can trigger anxiety symptoms too… especially shakiness, muscle tension and irregular heartbeat.  Your muscles (including your heart!) and your central nervous system absolutely need minerals to function.

I highly recommend magnesium replacement if you tend to feel anxious, get trigger points or other areas of muscle tension, have difficulty relaxing at night, grind your teeth or have restless legs, or any other difficulty allowing your body to unwind.

Nightly magnesium bath soaks or topical application of magnesium lotion, as well as trace mineral drops in water throughout the day can do wonders to settle a hyper-irritable central nervous system and soothe a tense musculoskeletal system.

 

Don’t ignore anxiety.

There is no reason to suffer, accelerate aging, or even shorten your lifespan because of untreated anxiety.

Did you know that addressing and treating anxiety actually slows the aging process and reverses the damage that anxiety does to your body?  It’s true.

Published February 5, 2015 in the British Journal of Psychiatry, researchers found that anxiety increases the rate of aging AND that treating anxiety helps reverse the aging process!

 

 

Telomeres are complexes of DNA that cap the ends of your chromosomes.  They shorten with age.

The length of your telomeres are considered a direct indicator of cellular and biological aging, because telomere shortening is accelerated when the aging process is accelerated.

This has been shown in other disorders such as depression, stress, increased cortisol levels, oxidative stress, higher levels of inflammation and now… anxiety conditions.

 

The study:

 

  • The study looked at 1283 patients with active anxiety disorders, 459 patients with a resolved anxiety disorder, and 582 control patients with no psychiatric disorders… over 2,300 patients total.
  • The average age was 42 years and 66% of the participants were female, 34% male.

 

The Results:

  • Telomere length typically shortens by about 14 base pairs a year.
  • Accelerated aging was found in all anxiety disorders including social phobias, agoraphobia, panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorders (GAD).
  • Even after controlling for sex, weight, health, lifestyle factors, smoking, drinking, etc… patients with active anxiety disorders had significantly shorter telomeres than those without anxiety (by 75 base pairs on average — over 5 years!)
  • BUT!  Participants who had their anxiety disorder adequately treated had telomere length almost the same length as their non-anxious counterparts… only a 7 telomere difference (about a 6 month difference.)

 

This shows the incredible resilience of our body to stress, disease, and trauma!!

 

  • After the anxiety was alleviated, telomere length returned to almost the exact length that non-anxious patients had!
  • And the longer the patient has been anxiety free, the closer it was in telomere length to those who had no history at all of any anxiety disorder.

 

Just as it is never too late to stop smoking (because there are immediate health benefits as the body immediately starts to repair) it is NEVER too late to address anxiety… as the body is fully capable of reversing the aging effects of anxiety on our DNA.

 

So this is yet another study to prove:

Our psychology has a direct effect on our physiology.

 

In other words… our emotions and state of mind matter.

As I write about here, our outlook impacts our physical body.

 

This latest study showed an average life span shortening of about 5 years or more just due to anxiety.

And a near complete reversal by addressing that anxiety.

 

Add years to your life by getting help when you need it.

Don’t ignore anxiety.  Anxiety is extremely common and there is a lot of support out there just waiting to help you.

I’ve blogged about anxiety quite a bit because just like many of you, I’ve had my own share of anxiety and have learned how to work with this energy to optimize my own health and the health of thousands of my patients who have anxiety struggles.

 

Other blog posts I’ve written over the years to the help decrease your anxiety:

1.  Crisis Navigation — use the power of your emotions to feel your way through a crisis

2.  Acupuncture — one of the best tools to release pent-up anxiety

3.  Surrender — to recover from stress and trauma faster, drop your resistance

4.  Deep Sleep — sleep is absolutely necessary for increased daytime resiliency

5.  Exercise — boost mood and decrease stress through exercise

6.  Protect your sense of hope — it’s your most valuable healing tool. 

7.  Decrease your anxiety when Googling health information or seeing a physician a the doctor’s office: specific tips for navigating health info online and in the office (blog + video).

8.  The top 5 ways to navigate an immediate crisis and protect your health.  A crisis is an opportunity for transformation… here’s how (video).

 

I really hope these resources help!

I truly believe in the power of positive, uplifting, empowering health information.

Positivity, support, wellness tips, encouragement, fun…  all of these things make a difference and ACTUALLY IMPACT LONGEVITY… adding years to your lifespan!

 

xoxox, Laura

 

5 Things You Can Do To Naturally Lift Depression

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Yet another medical study continues to verify that probiotics absolutely robustly treat depression.

 

Researchers found that only 4 weeks — just ONE MONTH — of probiotic therapy significantly lifted depression, decreased anhedonia, reversed sleep disturbances… and that these improvements were still  sustained months later.

These results are so impressive because probiotics had zero of the adverse side effects that prescriptions antidepressants do and can safely be taken indefinitely.

The Study:

(presented at the 13th World Congress of Biological Psychiatry on June 19, 2017)

  • 10 patients with major depressive disorder in a current episode of depression were treated with a probiotic containing two strains: Lactobacillus helveticus R0052and Bifidobacterium longum R0175.
  • Clinical symptoms were assessed at baseline and again after 2, 4 and 8 weeks of probiotic treatment: including mood, anhedonia, anxiety, sleep disturbance.
  • In addition, molecular markers of inflammation were assessed, sleep studies were followed, and tryptophan and serotonin levels were documented.

 

The Results:

  • Every single parameter improved significantly, with mood having the most robust immediate response:
  • mood raised by 55%
  • anhedonia improved by 20%
  • sleep quality improved by 33%
  • … and all after only one month on the probiotic!!!
  • Additionally, these results were maintained or continued to improve by the two month assessment

 

The latest statistics estimate that about one in every ten Americans now takes an antidepressant, and antidepressants are the third most prescribed form of medication.

 

Yet side effects cause about 60% of patients to discontinue their prescription antidepressant within the first three months of use.  Probiotics had none of those Rx side effects… which can be very severe, including: vomiting, severe headaches, increased suicide risk, sexual dysfunction… not to mention the chemical exposure and dependency on obtaining repeat prescriptions from your physician.

Probiotics are safe, effective…

…and even better…

…available without a prescription.

 

Earlier studies suggest that the gut microbes in depressed individuals are decreased in both amount and in variety.

If the natural flora of the gut is diminished in depression, then restoring the natural vitality and variety of healthy organisms in the digestive tract might be a very powerful way to improve outcome in depression (and other mood disorders, such as anxiety.)

 

Sp… starting probiotics is one easy way to naturally treat depression.

Here are 4 more holistic ways to feel better ASAP:

 

 

1. Sleep One More Hour

 

A study (presented at the American Academy of Neurology 2017 Annual Meeting on April 27, 2017) reveals that even a minor sleep disturbance (even a shortage of just one hour of sleep!) can significantly up your risk of mood disorders such as depression and anxiety.

The Study:

  • Researchers looked at data collected from over 20,800 adult participants
  • Participants were 50% women, 50% men, and an average age of 47.5 years old.

The Results:

  • Sleep duration was inversely associated with mental health.
  • Each hour of sleep made a statistically significant difference in the rates of depression, hopelessness, nervousness, restlessness and fidgeting.
  • Getting just one hour more of sleep significantly alleviated every single one of these symptoms.
  • These rates compounded with each additional hour.  Getting two hours less sleep TRIPLED the rates of nervousness and hopelessness, and almost QUADRUPLED the rates of depression and restlessness.

 

Wow! If only one hour more sleep is shown to help treat depression, hopelessness and anxiety, we really need to take sleep seriously.

It’s no longer enough to just get by on fumes, stressing out your adrenals and hoping to just catch up your sleep deficit over the weekend.  Yes, we know chronic sleep issues are no way to live… increasing rates of Alzheimers and increasing severity of asthma attacks and upping ADHD symptoms and more.

But now we know, as little as a 60 minutes less sleep at night significantly affects mood and mental health too.  We need to do everything we can do to maximize how restorative every minute of our sleep is, every night.

My fav way to get better sleep?

Sleep grounded.

 

EEG studies of brain activity show that connecting to the soothing energy of the earth instantaneously shifts our brain wave patterns and reduces ambient stress levels.
Effortlessly getting into the relaxed but alert alpha brain wave pattern, which is seen in deep meditative states and restorative sleep states, is one of the hallmarks of grounding.
Deeper, more restorative sleep at night puts us in a zone of healing, which helps support everything… from treating mood disorders to decreasing your risk of dementia to boosting metabolism.

 

2.  Light Therapy

 

We all know that getting morning light each day significantly improves seasonal blues (or winter depression.)

But a new study shows that light therapy lifts depression — even depression that is NOT seasonally related — *more effectively* than antidepressant drug therapy.

 

 

The Study (Published in JAMA Psychiatry on Nov 18, 2015):

  • 122 patients being treated for depression randomly assigned to either a 30 minute session of light therapy or a placebo device alone, a combo of light therapy plus an antidepressant medication, or a combo of the placebo device and antidepressant medication.
  • The depressed patients had to have a major depressive disorder lasting at least 45 weeks or longer.
  • Light therapy was a 30 minute a day exposure to a fluorescent light box as soon as possible after awakening in the morning.

 

The Results:

  • After only 4 weeks, depression assessment scores were significantly better than baseline assessment in both groups using the light therapy (either with Rx or without a Rx antidepressant.)
  • Notably, the lightbox therapy was actually significantly MORE effective than drug therapy in treating depression.

 

Light therapy can be used safely in conjunction with medical treatments (including Rx medications) so if you are on an anti-depressant, augment your treatment with light therapy and it’s possible you can work with your physician to decrease dose!

And if you are not on an antidepressant but suffer from depressed mood, whether seasonal or not, consider getting 20 – 30 minutes of light therapy every day for a few weeks before giving those antidepressants a try.

 

The best light therapy box is waiting for you right here.

Portable, full strength, LED, zero UV rays, clinically proven effective.

 

 

3.  Vit D Supplements

 

A study (published in the November 2011 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings) showing that low levels of Vit D is significantly linked to increased risk of depression.   And the important thing to note about this particular medical study is that the researchers found that the link between low Vit D levels and depression was even higher in patients who had a prior history of depression. 

What does that mean?  It means if you have a history of depression, it is extremely important for you to be sure to supplement with Vitamin D, or be certain to get daily exposure to natural sunlight.

Even in those who did not have a prior history of depression, Vitamin D levels were low across the board… with 50.7% of ALL study participants having low Vit D levels.  This suggests that at least half of us, regardless of mood, are already low in Vit D.

So far there have already been two studies that both show that after treatment with high doses of Vit D (thereby achieving an elevation in serum Vit D levels) depressive symptoms declined or resolved entirely.

And especially important for those with a history of depression or a family history of depression… it’s great news that higher Vitamin D levels can actually help decrease risk of future depression.

 

4.  Zinc Supplements

 

On December 15, 2013, the medical journal Biological Psychiatry published the results of a huge study that found overwhelming evidence of a link between zinc and depression.  Researchers looked at  17 different studies that measured peripheral blood–zinc concentrations in over 1600 depressed patients and 800 control patients.

The research showed that mean peripheral blood–zinc concentrations were not only lower but that zinc levels correlated with how severe the depression was.   The most severe depression was associated with the greatest deficit in zinc levels.

Looking at both animal studies and pre-clinical and clinical trials, researchers found that zinc added to antidepressant therapy produced more rapid and more effective improvement in symptoms of depression than without zinc supplementation.

 

These 5 holistic treatment options:

  • probiotics

  • grounding

  • light therapy

  • vitamin D &

  • zinc supplementation

 

can all be safely and effectively combined to help treat your depression and can also safely be used in combination with Rx treatment for depression.  

 

 

So please know, there are lots of all natural ways to support your mood and please forward this info on to any friends or loved ones who could use the extra support.

Not too many physicians know about these holistic ways to help treat depression and many don’t realize that these extra steps can make a world of difference to their patients who are not being adequately treated through a conventional approach alone.

 

 

With great faith in your natural healing potential…

xoxox, Laura

 

 

 

 

Sea Salt Spray Heals Diabetic Ulcers

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As I blogged about last week… I love treating skin issues.

I love taking care of skin, and I love supporting skin healing.

As a physician, skin is like magic to me.

 

In medicine, we see the miracle of skin repair all the time:

 

  • You can cut it during surgery, and it will grow back together within a week.
  • You can scrape it to take a biopsy, and it will re-establish an intact barrier within days.
  • You can puncture it with a needle, and it will fill back in to stop bleeding within a matter of minutes… sometimes seconds.
  • Skin is miraculously quick at creating new cells, removing old ones, repairing structural damage, and re-establishing blood flow.

 

In science, we have yet to be able to re-create anything half as magnificent as real skin, even in the most advanced laboratory on earth.

Nothing can truly substitute for your skin.  For this, we should be on our knees grateful to our skin.  This is completely aside from the physical appearance of our skin.

This is just that our skin allows our survival… it lovingly cares for us when we don’t even give our skin a second thought.

But what about when we do have a wound in our skin that is not healing?

This is a common medical issue for diabetic patients, so a recent medical study on a holistic way to treat non-healing skin ulcers really grabbed my attention.

 

The Study (published in Wounds, Feb 2017):

  • Researchers enrolled 10 patients with diabetic foot ulcers and monitored healing over a 12 week period.
  • Patients sprayed their diabetic foot ulcers three times daily with a sterile sea salt spray (Oceanzyme Spray.)

 

The Results:

  • The patients using the sea salt spray had an average of a 73% reduction in wound area (which is a major amount of healing) and two of the 10 had 100% full healing within the 3 month time period.

 

The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates almost 30 million Americans have diabetes, and that diabetes costs the US about $250,000,000 dollars a year.

The cost of treating a diabetic foot ulcer alone can be over $25,000, as many diabetic foot ulcers need prolonged treatments that including dressings, topical Rx, surgical interventions, even amputation.

 

Finding out that an all natural, no-Rx-needed salt water spray heals skin ulcers that well is absolutely so exciting in the world of holistic medicine…

…but maybe not so exciting for pharmaceutical companies!

 

Want yet another holistic approach for treating wounds?

 

A study published on April 12, 2012 in the International Wound Journal showed that when honey was used on all types of wounds, it:

  • promoted healing
  • minimized necrosis
  • minimized the amount of skin that sloughed off the wound
  • reduced wound size
  • decreased affected area around wound

 

I’d be happy to use honey as a topical dressing even if it only had a small chance of helping… but it made a significant, measurable improvement in over 84% of wounds!!!!

 

We are talking:

  • post operative wounds
  • general skin wounds
  • infections
  • burns
  • ulcers
  • pressure sores and more!

 

 

Honey has well-known antimicrobial benefits, doesn’t spoil, is easy to have on hand and is portable (no refrigeration required!) so it really makes perfect sense to use as a wound dressing in children older than 12 months old.

 

First be sure to flush out any wound with lots of water… for a long period of time.

Then, depending on wound type you may consider a topical antihistamine, anti-inflammatory, or antibacterial dressing, and then honey.

Of course, be sure to have deeper or larger wounds evaluated by a physician.

 

For diabetic foot ulcers, combining the two medical study results into one treatment plan, I would recommend:

  1.  Spraying the ulcer generously with sea salt spray
  2.  Gently dressing the ulcer with a thin layer of manuka honey
  3.  Then covering with a sterile bandage.
  4.  Repeat three times a day and have wounds monitored by your in-person physician for signs of infection.

 

Want more holistic, medically proven ways to naturally support the health of your skin?

I’ve created an online class just for you:

My 5 Day Skin Happiness Makeover — which runs next month!

 

 

The class comes with a complete holistic skin care toolkit…

…a goodie bag filled with all the items you need to play with my very favorite skin care tools every day of the course and beyond!

 

The goodie bag is so awesome that you could literally throw out every skin treatment, cream and lotion and potion that you have in your bathroom right now and start totally over with only the very best, most supportive, totally holistic products that I am going to personally send you!

 

The course culminates in a live Q&A phone call where I will answer every single one of your skin care questions PERSONALLY.

Ask me anything!

I will tell you exactly what is going on with your skin and how to help, medically and holistically and intuitively.

 

Screen Shot 2015-09-08 at 3.36.01 PM

Join right now to reserve your spot in this

by-reservation-only special skin care makeover!

 

xoxoxo, Laura

 

 

 

The Hidden Benefits Of Grounding: Why It Helps More Than Just Your Body

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Clear air is awesome and nurturing.

Juicing is powerful and cleansing.

Meditation is relaxing and centering.

Purified water is hydrating and supportive.

Nutritional supplements and even prescription medications can be balancing and healing.

 

But inevitably, with every holistic healing modality I worked with, there would be some patients who benefit greatly and some who get absolutely no results whatsoever.

Some people heal with a certain diet.

Some heal with a particular exercise practice.

Some heal with a prescription medication, some with a supportive supplement, some with a life saving surgery, some with a chiropractic adjustment, some with acupuncture.

Nothing is universal.

There is no one diet that helps everyone.

There is no one adjustment or one surgery or one supplement that will support everyone.

 

Nothing is universal except for one thing: grounding.

 

 

I’ve been a physician for over 15 years and I’ve seen quite a lot of patients over those years.

And during all that time, I’ve only come across one healing modality that supports the entire body — head to toe, every organ system — in such a powerful way.

Everything else provides indirect health benefits — but grounding directly to the earth means your body is directly healing.

The earth makes the atmosphere for those beautiful deep breaths of fresh air you can take each day.

The earth flows the water that can deeply hydrate your body each day.

The earth grows the food that you juice and the herbs that you take and the nutritional building blocks your body depends on daily.

Those are all powerful and wonderful indirect ways to support your well being.  But the most powerful way of all to enhance your health is to touch the earth directly!

 

Because our bodies are electrical — our heart beat, our brain impulses, our breathing mechanism, our digestion ALL rely on electrical signals to work properly.

Food can not be digested, blood can not be circulated, air can not be breathed without first an electrical impulse conducted through the electrical circuitry of our bodies.

So it doesn’t matter what food we eat unless our GI tract is first innervated and activated properly!

It doesn’t matter about air quality if we can’t first innervate and activate our breathing mechanism!

Our whole body is electrical and relies on good conductivity to work.

 

As a physician I have seen patients in the ICU hooked up to breathing tubes and feeding tubes and if the body is dying, it doesn’t matter if the air is the purist in the world and the water is the finest in the world and the food is the most alive active just-juiced nourishment in the world…

…if the body is dying none of these parameters matter.

 

We have to electrically activate the body, which is what defibrillator paddles are trying to do in resuscitating the heart of the body that is dying, and what a ventilator is taking over for when it tries to breathe for a body that is not breathing on it’s own.

Above all, we have to establish and maintain the healthy conductivity of our body.

Our body has to maintain a healthy electrical circuitry in order to remain conscious and have all of our body organs function effectively.

So to protect our body for a lifetime, we need to nurture the healthy conductivity of our body first and foremost, before turning our eye to the air and water and food quality that enhance our well being.

Touching the earth immediately impacts and supports the conductivity of the entire body — supporting the healthy function of our heart, our circulatory system, our brain, our bone metabolism, our thyroid function, our adrenal function, our skin conductance — our entire body from head to toe

 

Why is this important right now?

 

 

Fifty, one hundred, two hundred years ago we were more likely to spend time barefoot, or be working directly in the earth, walking on the earth, and going back further, sleeping directly on the ground.

 

But now, we have rubber shoes, cars to travel in, insulated flooring in our home, asphalt coating our roadways, high rises filled with smart meters to live in.

And life is so stressful, more fast paced and competitive and technologically advanced than ever before.

We are surrounded by more financial stress, technological smog (EMFs) and artificial foods than previously imaginable.

Stress, higher cortisol, joint pain, dementia, cancer, age related changes — these are all a fall out from a life long inflammatory condition of a lifetime of living disconnected to the earth.

 

So we better find a way to be absolutely certain we intentionally seek this connection, routinely.

 

There is no coincidence that the sole of our foot happens to also be the most naturally conducive to an electrical connection… as it has one the highest concentrations of nerve endings of any point in our entire body (lips, fingertips, and soles of the feet are the top three!)

AND

it also has the highest concentration of Eccrine sweat glands on the entire body (soles of the feet, palms of the hands, and forehead being the top three!) because moisture, and specifically, salt water, enhances conductivity.

 

So the most highly conductive part of our body is also the most highly sensory and they both come together right there, on the bottom of your naked foot, waiting to plug into the energy of the earth.

 

Way beyond the electrical connection of simply touching the earth, grounding our body gives us a deeper support that has a spiritual aspect.

 

I believe we are only understanding the very tip of the iceberg when we focus on grounding as being an electrical connection

Whether through scalar energy, or chakra low, or meridian flow, or Schumann frequency resonance, or magnetic energy, or support as yet undiscovered from the earth… one thing is certain… grounding supports our body and our soul energy.

 

 

When plants are grounded, they grow two and three times as tall and bloom more and the blossoms last longer.

When humans are grounded, we are not going to grow two and three times as tall…

…but we are going to feel two and three times more vibrant and healthy and energetic as we do when we are ungrounded.

 

 

While the plant world expresses grounded support by vibrant growth,

we express grounded support by vibrant HEALTH!

 

 

Grounding is the only modality that I know of that combines the fullest extent of physical support with the fullest extent of energetic healing.

Nothing else can quite come close to this full state of well being.

No vitamin you take in the morning, that your body will digest that day and try to deliver through your intestines to help nutritionally support your body, will do everything grounding can do.

No amount of sleep you can get the night before to help repair your body to meet the demands of the next day, will do everything grounding can do.

No amount of spiritual support through energy healing modalities such as deep breathing or meditation can support the fullest extent of the physical body the way grounding can.

 

No modality does both the physical and the energetic work that grounding does, simultaneously.

 

So while the medical studies show you why grounding is so healing for the human body, I want you to know that it’s not just your physical body that is being supported.  It’s your mind frame, your soul energy, your Spirit.

Just as we have now shown that being disconnected causes everything from depression to inflammation to accelerated aging (collectively now called Nature Deficit Disorder) the re-establishment of grounding your body to support your health will have ramifications that go well beyond any single parameter or indicator of physical health.

You feel better.

You feel supported.

You feel creative.

You feel inspired.

You feel stronger.

You feel more motivated.

You feel more loving.

You feel more loved.

Nothing quite allows you to become the pure positive vessel of Well Being the way grounding does.

 

 

You become open to your soul energy flowing deeply, and meeting your body at it’s core, deep in your heart center.

You become the perfect balance of a physical body that is supported and healthy while being an open vessel holding the most vibrant state of your soul’s energy flowing through your body and resonating out from your core.

 

When you are in that specific union — of your unique physical body that nobody else has, combined with your unique soul energy that nobody else has, coming together and being totally supported by the healing energy flow of the earth… that is your optimal state of Well Being.

You can offer twice as much of yourself to the world when you feel your well being optimized the way a plant would grow twice as tall because it is grounded and supported by the earth’s energy.

 

And that’s really the whole point of being alive.

So that you can offer to the world what you are here to offer.

And you can live the unique meaningful life that you are meant to live.

 

You can go out and radiate twice as much creativity, twice as much goodness, twice as much connection with others, twice as much love to offer, and make twice the impact on this world… and more.

 

 

So ultimately, grounding is not just about your cardiac function or your hormonal balance or your sleep quality or your bone strength.

Grounding is about finding a center that is so deep and so pure and so strong that you can truly be the best you possible.

Optimizing all of these other things… cardiac function, sleep, hormones, adrenals, bones, thyroid, insulin, etc… so that just like the plants in the grounding study that grow twice as tall when they are grounded, you can feel twice as vibrant, and twice as open to why you are here and what do you want to express while you are here in this lifetime.

That is what I have witnessed and experienced over and over and over again both personally and as a medical physician with my patients.

 

Most people start their grounding journey because they need an answer that offers more support than any one single medication or operation or vitamin or exercise can offer.

Most people have found that conventional medicine has not been sufficient to correct the physical ailments the disconnect from the earth has caused.

And most people find that when they reconnect, it’s not just the physical ailments that improve.

It’s the body but it is also the energy level and it’s the mind-frame and it’s the sense of meaningful purpose and it’s the heart that heals as well.

 

So my goal is to be sure you do not limit your expectations in any way when you begin your grounding journey.

Allow your entire body, mind, heart and spirit to be transformed.

Allow the supportive energy of Mother Earth to fill you up, open you up, support you in becoming the optimized best version of you that is possible.

The future for grounding is limitless as connecting directly to the earth outside is the birthright of all living things.  There are very very few circumstances where one would not be able to connect outside and receive that healing flow if only we would remember that it is natural for us to do so.

Even urban dwellers can get connected by standing barefoot in a park or on a concrete sidewalk.   Even prisoners in most prisons have access to the outdoors, even if it is concrete, for at least a short period of time each day.

I have patients who live several stories off of the ground who hold onto a tree branch that reaches into their balcony and this is how they ground each afternoon.

I have patients who have a cement basement and stand barefoot on this cement while they fold laundry, and this is how they ground each night.

 

And for those who are bed ridden, there are even indoor ways to connect directly to the earth even lying comfortably on our beds as we lay tucked in tight using either a grounding rod or a grounded outlet in your home.

No just for those with limited mobility who can’t get outside, grounding while indoors lets you stay in that healthy, connected healing zone for much longer than only grabbing a few minutes outside when you can.

You can actually be grounded indoors while at work, while home watching TV or reading a book, while spending quality time with your loved ones.

The absolutely easiest way to optimize the amount of time you are grounded in a 24 hour period is to start by sleeping grounded all night long.

 

There are a huge amount of medical grade, high quality indoor grounding tools waiting for you to explore right over here.

 

Taking action, trying it for yourself, taking a few minutes to put a bare foot onto the earth outside, taking the time to ground indoors as much as possible with indoor grounding tools, can do more to inform you about the healing potential of grounding your body than any amount of words I can write.

Luckily, grounding is the easiest, most readily available healing modality possible.

The only thing you need to do is give it a try, and allow the earth’s energy to uplift, transform and optimize your well being naturally.

The earth is out there, waiting for you.

xoxoxo, Laura

 

Does Dairy Cause Acne?

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A new medical study takes a look at whether dairy is associated with acne in teens.

 

 

I love love love skin and eagerly took three times the amount of dermatology training in medical school and internship than my classmates because I find skin so absolutely fascinating.

More on that in a minute.

But first, this study in particular peaked my interest because I am asked by patients all the time whether dairy is a trigger for acne.

The Study (published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology in August 2016):

 

  • Researchers looked at over 220 teens (ages 14 – 19) half who had with moderate acne vulgaris and half who were acne free.
  • Acne and control groups were compared in regards to age, gender, ethnicity, weight, BMI and their diet was reported and analyzed.

The Results:

  • Low fat/skim milk was significantly correlated with having acne.
  • Whole milk consumption was not correlated with having acne.

 

The Bottom Line?

While low-fat and skim milk intake raised prevalence of acne in teens,

whole milk did not have any association to acne at all.

 

So this gives us at least one holistic tool with which to address acne:

Consider switching to organic whole fat milk in teens who consume milk but wish to decrease their acne risk.

 

And I think that is a good idea for multiple reasons, as I truly feel children (including teens) need lots of natural, organic whole fats (like those found in organic eggs, organic whole fat milk and organic butter) to help with brain development as well as hormonal balance and growth. 

 

But skin isn’t just a perfunctory organ system that cranks out a pimple now and then because of one particular thing we eat or drink.

Skin is dynamic.

I love skin because it is such an interactive, immediately responsive organ system.

Skin speaks to us every day, all day.

Skin speaks to us through the location of the eczema patches we have, through acne surges, through dry tight skin, hives, changes in hair growth, pigmentation, wrinkles, stretch marks…

…and much, much more.

Skin can speak subtly through chronic messages that it whispers to you your entire life…

….or skin can scream loudly and angrily during acute transitions and times of crisis.

 

 

But no matter how your skin speaks to you,  there is always a message to be appreciated.

Because our skin replicates so quickly, it is a wonderful mirror for what is going on with the rest of our body and mind:

 

  • If we are anemic, it shows us quickly.
  • If we are dehydrated, it shows us quickly.
  • If we are malnourished, our skin will lack that robust glow that healthy skin gives.
  • If we have been neglecting our selves in other ways, our skin will reveal us.
  • If we are unhappy, our skin literally sags.
  • If we have lost connection with joy, our skin tells it.
  • If we feel ugly, our skin mirrors that.

 

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Because it covers our entire body, every thought we think and every word we say and every intention we ever have passes through our skin on its way to communicate with the outside world.

So it doesn’t just protect us from the world… quite the opposite is true too:

it translates our inner being to the surface.

 

 

It is constantly in contact with and intimate with our inner workings.  Because of this, skin reflects how we feel about ourselves.

Skin forms our barrier, our identity.  It forms what we perceive as *us* and delineates *us* from *the rest of the world*.

Skin is our outer projection of our inner truths.

 

 

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In short, skin is our boundary.

 

And acne reminds us of this… acne issues are literally an invitation to re-evaluate how we see ourselves and how we believe others see us.

And often — do you notice this? — it’s not just an invitation… we are literally forced to reconcile dynamics that we have outgrown or need to confront.

 

Are there any skin issues you are ready to move past?

 

 

I literally scour the medical literature and combine the most up-to-date information on skin treatments, therapies and procedures with my intuitive understanding of just how deep skin issues can go…

… they stab right into the core of our being, to the core of our self esteem, to the core of what we think of deep down inside.

 

And I put all of that medical, holistic and intuitive information into my

5 Day Skin Happiness Bootcamp — which runs in just a few weeks!

 

Every time I run it, I add more and more detailed info as I answer every single question that my class participants bring to class.

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This time around, I have upgraded the holistic skin care goodie bag that comes with the course, so that now you get my very favorite skin serum alongside my favorite skin supplements, my favorite holistic cleanser, my favorite all natural sunscreen… and much much more.

All culminating in a live Q&A phone call where I will answer every single one of your skin care questions PERSONALLY.

Ask me anything!

I will tell you exactly what is going on with your skin and how to help, medically and holistically and intuitively.

 

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Join right now to reserve your spot in this

by-reservation-only special skin care makeover!

 

xoxoxo, Laura

 

 

Morning Light Effectively Treats Fibromyalgia In Just A Few Days

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Just one hour of bright light each morning has been medically shown to decrease pain and sensitivity as well as increase functioning in patients with fibromyalgia.

 

Meaningful results were statistically significant without any artificial prescription medications and zero side effects, which is exciting news because fibromyalgia pain is typically an extremely difficult type of pain to treat.

Usually, fibromyalgia patients are either given a cocktail of Rx medications ranging from antidepressants to pain killers, or told there is nothing that can be done and that the pain and the reduced ability to function is just now their baseline… or worse… all in their head.

Exercise has shown to improve function as in fibromyalgia, which is awesome, but what about patients with co-morbid medical issues or mobility issues that prevent them from strenuously exercising?

Turns out there is a passive way to reap meaningful benefits… getting one hour of light therapy every morning.

 

The Study (presented at the SLEEP 2017 Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies on June 5, 2017):

  • 10 patients meeting the American College of Rheumatology criteria for fibromyalgia were studied
  • Researchers assessed baseline function according to the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire, pain sensitivity threshold and tolerance, and circadian timing as well as an overnight session in a sleep lab.
  • Patients were randomly assigned to either 6 subsequent days of self-administered light therapy for 1 hour either every morning or every evening, using light boxes.
  • Researchers then re-assessed function, pain sensitivity, and circadian timing.

The Results:

  • Absolutely zero side effects were reported with light therapy (woot!)
  • 1 hour of light therapy statistically improved function and pain sensitivity regardless of timing (morning and evening light both being therapeutic to reduce pain and improve function)
  • Morning light additionally lead to a significant return of meaningful function, as well as allowed participants to fall asleep earlier, shifting their circadian rhythm forward.
  • The improvements after just 6 days using light therapy was as robust as treatment with cognitive behavioral therapy!

While the study was small, the results were significant and the ramifications of this are very meaningful. This study shows that light can quickly and effectively help return function and decrease pain, something that can absolutely be a game changer for patients with fibromyalgia and other chronic pain issues.

 

With zero risk, zero side effects, and accessible for even patients who are infirm or unable to ambulate, light therapy should easily be considered front line treatment for fibromyalgia.

And consider this:

by combining the two most effective healing modalities for fibromyalgia (exercise and morning light!) go outside for a brisk walk or some morning yoga in the sunshine and reap exponential benefits.

And did you know that light therapy is also an effective treatment for depression — even more effective than antidepressant Rx medications?

 

Published in JAMA Psychiatry on Nov 18, 2015, this placebo controlled study supports the use of a non-pharmaceutical intervention over a pharmaceutical intervention, which is a big deal in the world of holistic medicine.

 

Study details:

  • 122 patients being treated for depression randomly assigned to either a 30 minute session of light therapy or a placebo device alone, a combo of light therapy plus an antidepressant medication, or a combo of the placebo device and antidepressant medication.
  • The depressed patients had to have a major depressive disorder lasting at least 45 weeks or longer.
  • Light therapy was a 30 minute a day exposure to a fluorescent light box as soon as possible after awakening in the morning.
  • After only 4 weeks, depression assessment scores were significantly better than baseline assessment in both groups using the light therapy (either with Rx or without a Rx antidepressant.)

 

Notably, the lightbox therapy was significantly MORE effective than drug therapy.

 

 

 

Not only does a bright AM light help with shifting the circadian rhythm and restoring a healthy day-night rhythm…

…but light therapy is non-invasive, non-toxic, relatively inexpensive (drugstores sell lightboxes that are much less expensive than prescriptions drugs) and have no unwanted side effects (no weight gain, decreased libido, negative GI effects, etc…)

In fact, light therapy can be used safely in conjunction with medical treatments (including Rx medications) so if you are on an anti-depressant or pain prescription, augment your treatment with light therapy and it’s possible you can work with your physician to decrease dose!

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One month of morning light was enough to make more of a difference in depression treatment than a prescription antidepressant and only 6 days was enough to reduce chronic pain and increase function in fibromyalgia patients!

 

 

You can get morning light daily even without use of a lightbox – your pineal gland benefits from exposure to natural light every AM even when that light is cloudy or dim outside.

 

Make a habit of going out every morning immediately after waking up and grabbing a few minutes — and if possible, and entire hour — of daylight.

Better yet, take a warm cup of tea, hot water with lemon, or your AM coffee and sit on the earth grounded (or take a nice AM walk!) and you will do more to prevent or treat mood disorders and functional pain issues than taking drugs each day.

What else has morning light therapy been shown extremely effective for?

Light therapy quickly, safely, and effectively boosts libido!

 

New research (presented at the 29th European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Congress on September 19, 2016) shows that light therapy can significantly improve sexual satisfaction in people with low desire after only 2 weeks of treatment!

While this study was on men, because light therapy is incredibly effective for females too, I truly believe that this would work for women with low sex drive and should be first line therapy for anyone with sexual dysfunction or low sex drive.

The Study:

  • Researchers studied 38 patients with a diagnosis of primary hypoactive sexual desire or sexual arousal disorder.
  • Patients were randomly assigned to receive either active light treatment or placebo light treatment.
  • Active treatment was a daily 30 minute exposure to a light box with UV filter upon waking each morning.
  • Placebo light treatment was the same exposure but with a neutral density filter to reduce the light exposure to .01% strength of the active therapy.
  • Patients were assessed clinically at baseline and after 2 weeks of daily AM light exposure, as well as through self assessments and blood samples to test any hormone response to light therapy.

 

The Results:

  • After only two weeks of light therapy, patients with the active light treatment had hugely significant improvements in sexual satisfaction compared to placebo.
  • After just two weeks, sexual satisfaction for active light therapy patients increased more than 3X over baseline (from a rating of 2 out of 10 to 6.7 out of 10)
  • Placebo light therapy users had no statistically significant improvement at all (from baseline of 2 out of 10 to 2.7 out of 10)
  • In addition, the testosterone levels of the patients receiving active light therapy rose by over 50% in just two weeks (from an average testosterone level of 2.1 ng/mL to an average of 3.6 ng/mL!)
  • In contrast, there was no change at all to testosterone levels in the placebo group.

 

sunshine

Why?

The lightbox is really just

mimicking mother nature.

 

Testosterone levels naturally decrease in the Northern Hemisphere from November through April, when they begin to rise again throughout the summer.
Pregnancy rates reflect that, with the highest conception in the summer months (peaking in June.)
  • In fact, as I recently blogged about here, getting some extra Vitamin D from sun exposure actually boosts fertility — doubling the rate of implantation of an embryo and boosting the pregnancy rate from 20% up to 31%.

 

I feel convinced that light therapy should be first line of treatment, before using Rx medications, in the treatment of all forms of depressive disorders, fibromyalgia and other chronic pain disorders, and sexual dysfunction as well.

 

But why mimic mother nature when you can

just go outside and join her?

 

As I recently reported to you, exposure to light outdoors actually lengthens life span and is one of the healthiest things you can do each day

— in fact, did you know that avoiding the sun has been medically proven to actually be more deadly than heavy smoking?  It’s true!

And that is not even counting the health benefits if you are actually grounded outside and touching the earth, which I absolutely believe is the other healthiest thing you can possibly do!

For more information on grounding, download my free grounding ebook by entering your email address on my homepage and I’ll email it right to you!

To your health…

xox0xo, Laura

 

xoxo

 

Sunscreen May Not Reduce Melanoma Risk (Here is what can…)

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A new study (presented at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting on Nov 19, 2016) shows that sunscreen did not have the ability to reduce future melanoma risk.

 

466 children (enrolled in the study at age 6) were followed for almost a decade (through age 15) and with a detailed report of annual sun exposure and sunscreen use as well as annual skin exams, which identified and documented skin lesions.

This is the longest term study on new mole development ever conducted.

And unfortunately, the results reveal that there was no association between sunscreen use and subsequent development of new pigmented lesions.

Meaning sunscreen use did not protect from or decrease the likelihood of developing pigmented moles (a marker of melanoma risk) at all.

 

While sunscreen may be protective against other forms of skin cancer, this news is upsetting because over 75,000 cases of melanoma are diagnosed every year just in the United States alone, and melanoma is a particularly aggressive form of cancer.

But I’m not surprised.  To understand why the most common sunscreens (which is are all chemical based) are not preventing new pigmented lesions from arising, you have to understand how chemical sunscreens work:
  • Chemical sunscreens (such as oxybenzone, octinoxate, octisalate and avobenzone) are absorbed into your skin and attempt to neutralize the UV rays once they penetrate your cells, by chemically reacting to the UV radiation.

 

  • This means that the UV exposure is already reaching into your living tissues, and as a physician I don’t see how this can be cancer preventive.

 

  • Your cells are already exposed to the UV radiation (including your cell’s DNA) by the time it is being neutralized.

 

Physically blocking sunscreens, such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, physically sit on top of the skin and literally block UV radiation from even reaching your skin.  This is the type of sun protection you want.
  • Yes it is white and thick and annoying, but that’s how it works.  You do NOT want it to be nano-sized — as then it is just as harmful as the chemically based sunscreens.  It will go on more clear but that is only because it is now small enough to be directly absorbed into the skin and will meet the UV radiation inside of your skin cells, where we do not want it, exactly like chemical sunscreens do.
  • On top of the fact that chemical sunscreens allow the UV radiation to penetrate your skin, some of the chemicals in sunscreen (like the oils, petroleum products, and retinyl palmitate found in most sunscreens) have been shown to actually increase the rates of skin cancer lesions when directly applied to the skin.

 

  • And on top of that, many of the chemicals in chemical blocking sunscreens are shown to disrupt our natural hormone pathways.

 

  • In fact, oxybenzone, the most common chemical sunscreen used, has been shown to disrupt hormones and is *not* (repeat NOT) recommended for use in children. That’s right… look at all the “kid’s formula” sunscreens out there… they generally contain oxybenzone.  This chemical not only is a hormone-disruptor, but it is particularly well absorbed (which is why it is so commonly used) so applying to your skin it becomes internally absorbed within minutes.

 

  • Which means children, who are still growing, are getting systemic doses of hormone-disrupting oxybenzone circulating through their bodies on a daily basis all summer long.

 

sunshine

You don’t want to avoid sun exposure all together,

you just want to be smart about it.

 

 And I really mean it when I say you don’t want to avoid all sun exposure.
In fact, a recent article, published in the Journal of Internal Medicine on March 16, 2016, found that folks who avoided sun exposure had a decreased life expectancy, more decreased than the life expectancy of heavy smokers.  This study looked at almost 30,000 participants (females ages 25 – 64 year old with no history of malignancy) over a span of 20 years.  Researchers followed participants for over 20 years and tracked health outcomes and life span, and found that even when smoking was factored in, the life span of those who avoided the sun was  over 2 years shorter than heavy smokers who got the highest amount of sun exposure!!!

So even heavy smokers who soaked in the sun their whole life

outlived non-smokers who avoided sun exposure… by several years.

 

 

Participants who avoided the sun had higher rates of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and pulmonary disease.  And the results were dose-specific… meaning that the benefits of increased life expectancy with sun exposure went up directly in correlation to the amount of sun exposure.

Longer time in the sun = longer life span.  That simple.

 

And yes, though risk of skin cancer did increase with increased sun exposure, the patients that had skin cancer occur in relation to sun exposure actually had a better long-term prognosis!

In fact, recent research reveals that melanomas that occur in patients with low Vitamin D actually have more malignantly aggressive melanoma and that their prognosis is worse than patients with adequate Vit D from sun exposure.

These results show that avoiding the sun is a “risk factor for death of a similar magnitude as smoking” — directly quoting the medical report.

 

organic sunscreen recommendation

 

You know that I never ever ever present negative medical information without giving you tons of positive solutions!!

 

So you know if I am bringing it up on my blog here, then there are TONS of things you can do to make your time out in the sunshine safer for your skin, while boosting your whole-body disease prevention and prolonging your life span!

 

So Today… Here are The

Top 5 Things You Can Do To Decrease Your Skin Cancer Risk:

1.  Avoid Peak Sun Hours:

 

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The most important #1 way to protect from ultraviolet exposure is to avoid the sun during the peak UV hours in mid-day.

There was a huge medical study that backs this up… Sunscreen was third in order of most effective ways to protect yourself from sun damage and skin cancers.

The ultimate solution, when possible, is sun avoidance during peak sun hours (10AM – 4PM) — this is infinitely better than any sun protection.

You want to get some incidental sun exposure on some exposed skin daily, but to decrease the UV intensity you want that exposure to be in the earlier AM or later PM hours!

 

2.  Wear UV Protective Clothing and UV Blocking Sunglasses Instead Of Sunscreen:

 

The second best way to protect from the sun, if you are going out in the peak hours, is UV protective clothing.

Rash guards, hats, sunglasses.

Be certain to protect your eyes by wearing UV protective sunglasses, dear reader! UV exposure is one of the leading causes of lens opacity (cataracts) as you age. You can prevent this by diligently protecting your eyes.

 

 

3.   Use Only Physically Blocking, Non-Nano Sized Sunscreens

 

A non-nanosized, non-chemical based sunscreen like this one, which I love so much and is the sunscreen I put on my own face every single day.

It goes on more easily and with less white residue than any other physically blocking sunscreen I’ve tried that is not nanosized.

 

 

4.  Take Curcumin To Protect Against Melanoma

 

Did you know that Curcumin actually kills cancer cells in laboratory studies and has been specifically shown to target and kill melanoma cancer cells?   Read this study published in the International Journal of Cancer in October 2016 for a good overview on what we know about curcumin and melanoma so far.

If you want to add the anti-cancer benefits of curcumin to your health regime (which I highly recommend if you have any personal or family history of melanoma or even if you just have a history of intense sun exposure) I recommend taking a pharmacy grade supplement like this one that couples a 500 mg dose of curcumin with bioperine to help increase the bioavailablility and absorption of the curcumin.

 

5.  Use Vitamin B3 to decrease all other forms of skin cancer

 

Clear evidence that a simple vitamin can be cancer preventive:  Vitamin B3 dramatically reduces skin cancer rates.

Presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2015 Annual Meeting in May 2014, Vitamin B3 has been shown to be a safe, effective way to reduce your risk of recurrent skin cancer.

Researchers looked at over 380 patients with a prior history of non-melanoma skin cancers, giving half nicotinamide supplements and half a placebo, and followed them for a year.  They found the patients in the Vitamin B3 group had a quarter less skin cancers total (a 23% decrease) than control patients:

  • Basal cell occurrence decreased by 20%
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma decreased by 30%
  • Actinic Keratosis decreased by 13%

Nicotinamide enhances DNA repair in skin cells damaged by UV light, as well as boosts the immune system and prevents the suppression of immunity by ultraviolet radiation.  (Nicotinamide has other benefits as well, including preliminary studies showing a boost in cognition… helping to restore cognition in Alzheimers!)

So… if you have a history of serious sun exposure?  Or a history of previous skin cancers?  Or you just want less unsightly actinic keretosis popping up in the future?

Vitamin B 3  offers 100% all natural holistic chemo-prevention!  Vitamin B is safe, inexpensive, proven.

I like to apply it topically directly on my face and other areas (like the neck) where there has been chronic sun exposure throughout my life.

This Vit B3 serum is the same serum I recommend in my Skin Happiness Online skin makeover class and is available for you as well, right here.

 

 

Enjoy that life giving, mood boosting, beautifully warm radiant sunshine this summer…

…but do it in a way that you protect your skin from too much exposure:  try to avoid peak hours of sun exposure, avoid yucky chemical sunscreens and use physical sunscreens instead, and consider using curcumin and vit B3 to decrease your future skin cancer risk.

xoxox, Laura