Pillars of Wellness Part 1: Nutrition


For pillars of wellness part 1: nutrition, let’s talk about how nutrition is the core of any functional wellness plan. I consider there to be 4 pillars of wellness including Nutrition, Exercise, Stress Management, and Adventure. All of these pillars work together to strengthen you as a whole. While there may be other aspects of health worth paying attention to, managing these 4 pillars makes everything easier.


Weekly Round Up

Weekly Round Up

Time for another Weekly Round UP! This week we learn more about FODMAPS and gut health, ancestral eating, and how inflammation and autoimmune disease contribute to endometriosis.

This Week:
The Low FODMAP Diet
Everything you don’t know about ancestral eating and culture
Endometriosis: Treat the Immune System
Mycotoxin Illness
Fun! Health Nuts Swap Diets with Junk Food Addicts


Your Natural Detoxification Pathways

Heart and stethescope

It’s important to support your body’s natural detoxification pathways. We come into contact with toxins every day of our lives. We breathe toxins in, eat them, drink them, and rub them into our skin. The toxins we eat and drink have the honor of going through the entire digestive process before entering the 3 phases of detoxification. In contrast, the toxins we breathe and absorb through the skin take a more direct route into our blood and should be avoided if possible.

One form of absorption we take for granted is through the skin. Any toxin we absorb through the skin is free to wreck havoc in our system through oxidative damage and/or bind to hormone receptors through molecular mimicry. This will continue until either the immune system processes the toxin or the toxin finally makes its way to the liver.


9 Ways to Manage Acid Reflux

Woman Jumping with Heart Balloon

As promised, I will now share 10 ways to manage acid reflux. My clients have used these suggestions to successfully manage their acid reflux. Feel free to use the strategies below as you see fit. This list is an accumulation of suggestions I have found to be effective, my clients might do somewhere between 2—4 of these things at one time, don’t feel you need to do all of these at once.

A majority of these suggestions apply whether you are trying to manage acid reflux caused by low or high stomach acid. The suggestions specific to either low or high stomach acid are labelled accordingly. You might find a few items on this list new or surprising, either way, I hope you find them to be helpful.

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12 Things That Contribute to Acid Reflux

Acid Relux and Food

The following list is a non-comprehensive collection of the 12 things that contribute to acid reflux. There are usually 2 sides to the acid reflux and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) equation, low and high stomach acid. We often associate heartburn with high stomach acid, but more often than not, we are experiencing low stomach acid.


What’s So Bad About Legumes?

Soy Beans

What’s so bad about legumes? The answer to this depends on how healthy your gut is and whether you eat legumes all the time. If your gut is in good shape and you’re feel’n fine, then go ahead and enjoy legumes once in a while.

The idea that legumes are bad for us has been a point of criticism against Primal/Paleo dietary recommendations and it’s understandable why. Legumes are a staple in various cultural cuisines, it’s high in protein, starch, resistant starch, and minerals. Legumes are often a staple food in the diets of vegans and vegetarians as it serves the purpose of meeting their protein needs. This is also one of those foods that mainstream nutrition advocates promote as a replacement for meat/animal products. You can see how they might be nervous about legumes losing their reputation as a health food.

What’s interesting about this, especially following my article on lectins, is that no one can dispute that legumes have some potent self-defense mechanisms. As I mentioned in my previous article, the castor bean is a prime example but there are plenty of other examples that should give you pause.


The Hidden Dangers of Lectins

Bean Lectin

Lectins can be found in all organisms, they are carbohydrate specific proteins that mediate cellular recognition within cells, between cells and between different organisms (1). Most cells and tissues throughout the body have these glucoreceptors, meaning lectins could potentially bind to any tissue in the body.

Researchers interchangeably use the term agglutinin for lectin because it refers to the ability of the carbohydrate-binding proteins to cause clumping of red blood cells or other cells (glues cells together) (5, 7). All cells in the body contain glycol or sugar receptors and lectins have an affinity for these receptors including glycans of glycoproteins, glycolipids, or polysaccharides. The action of the leptin on these cells depends on the type of cell and what message the receptor activates.


What is Autoimmune Disease?

Intestinal Health

Usually, autoimmune disease starts with impaired gut permeability caused by various factors including over-exercise, inflammatory foods, stress, and exacerbated by alcohol. The gut accounts for 40% of our total energy expenditure. The gut lining prevents against loss of water and electrolytes and entry of antigens and microorganisms into the body. While allowing the exchange of molecules between host and environment and absorption of nutrients in the diet.

The gut functions as a complex multilayer system (1). The lining comprises an outer physical barrier and an inner functional/immunological barrier. The interaction of these 2 barriers enables permeability to be maintained. Disruption of these barriers results in severe immunodeficiency and risk of disease. Loss of intestinal barrier functions can occur abruptly in response to a major trauma such as severe burns and multi-organ failure. It can also occur gradually, leading to chronic inflammatory diseases.