Everyday I find myself recommending the use of apple cider vinegar to promote good digestive health. A patient of mine recently told me about how common and plantar warts were easily removed by apple cider vinegar within 1 week of applying daily. I was very impressed and decided to test this out on a stubborn wart on one of my children. This wart had been a true survivor after months of different applications and remedies but it had no chance against apple cider vinegar. Nightly a cotton ball was soaked in vinegar then squeezed and fastened to the wart with some tape over night. A huge change took place over night and the battle was won by the 6th application. This inspired me to research some of the other uses of apple cider vinegar.
Commonly I prescribe 1-2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to be consumed right before a meal for digestive health. This has a few functions. The acidity acts as a stimulant to the brain and stomach to get the digestive process started and therefore improves secretion of digestive enzymes and the break down of food. Apple cider vinegar also promotes the stomach lining to release more stomach acid which is very important to the digestive process and of noteworthy mention - B12 and protein absorption in the small intestine. In turn, symptoms that are usually thought to be associated with high stomach acid levels (actually due to low acid levels) will begin to resolve within a week of consistent use. As an added benefit, along with a balanced diet and exercise, apple cider vinegar could potentially help with weight loss as it promotes satiety, or the sensation of being full due to the acetic acid content.
Promotion of apple cider vinegar for the use of dandruff caused by yeasts or fungi is common. Mixing apple cider vinegar with water into a spray bottle appears to kill the micro-organisms and improve scalp dandruff. Along the lines of yeast and candida, the natural enzymes found in apple cider vinegar can help with internal yeast overgrowth as well.
Consider adding apple cider vinegar into your daily routine. Choose a high quality source such as Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar and consider one of the options mentioned HERE to help you get started.
Did you know that anxiety can be caused or amplified by poor digestion? This is a relatively common relationship that I have seen in clinic multiple times over the years. Last year, a 28 year-old female came to the clinic for help with anxiety. She had always been a “worrier” but noticed that the anxiety had turned into something more than just worrying. After 2 panic attacks that occurred without a trigger or identifiable cause, she came looking for support. Not wanting to take traditional anti-anxiety medications suggested by her MD, her friend had suggested coming to see a naturopath.
Reviewing her full health history which included excess gas and bloating that couldn’t be related to any particular food along with a skin rash and sugar cravings, I suggested that she do the stool microbiology test. Yeast was discovered and treatment started along with dietary changes. After an initial increase in anxiety for a few days, a very noticeable drop in symptoms occurred by the second week. This continued to improve until she no longer felt anxious without reason. What is the connection between yeast and anxiety?
The neuroendocrine system is a complex network of nervous tissue surrounding the intestines and is often referred to as our second brain. 70-90% of the hormone serotonin is produced and secreted here and is then transported to the brain via blood. Serotonin, aka the “feel good” hormone has very important functions, such that many pharmaceutical drugs act to mimic or enhance serotonin levels (eg - prozac, citalopram, cipralex). When serotonin levels are low, symptoms of depression, anxiety, insomnia, addictions and weight gain can be observed. If digestive health is not optimum as in the example when there is yeast overgrowth, it is difficult to produce appropriate levels of serotonin leading to anxiety and other symptoms. By treating the gut health and restoring balance, the neuroendocrine system is more efficient and able to increase serotonin levels thus alleviate symptoms. It was the link for this patient having anxiety and yeast-overgrowth/candida. Here is an example of the Doctor's Data Microbiology Stool Test that was used.