Intravenous Nutrient Therapy

Dr. Sanjay Mohan Ram, B.Sc.(Hon.), N.D.

The Meyer’s Cocktail: What is it?

The “Myer’s Cocktail” was created by the late John Myers, MD, a physician from Baltimore, Maryland. He pioneered the use of intravenous (IV) vitamins and minerals as part of the overall treatment of various medical problems. The modified “Myers’ cocktail,” which consists of magnesium, calcium, B vitamins, and vitamin C, has been found to be effective against acute asthma attacks, migraines, fatigue (including chronic fatigue syndrome), fibromyalgia, acute muscle spasm, upper respiratory tract infections, chronic sinusitis, seasonal allergic rhinitis, cardiovascular disease, and other disorders. Chronic problems such as anxiety, depression, low thyroid function and stress are well controlled by these treatments.

For other patients, there are protocols to help with detoxing, improving energy, pain management, rehydration and regeneration in athletes, as well as boosting hormones.

Originally, it appeared that Myers used a 10-mL syringe and administered the nutrients by slow intravenous push with a combination of magnesium chloride, calcium gluconate, thiamine, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, calcium pantothenate, vitamin B complex, and vitamin C. The exact doses of individual components were unknown, but Myers apparently had variations for each nutrient.

Intravenous or IV administration of vitamins and minerals, by producing a noticeable, though transient, increase in the serum concentration, provides a window of opportunity for injured cells to take up the nutrients. Nutrients taken up by cells after an IV infusion may leak out again, but some repair does take place while the nutrients are inside the cell. Nonetheless, if cells are repeatedly “flooded” with beneficial nutrients, the improvement can be amassed. Patients who receive a series of IV injections become progressively healthier. In these patients, the interval between treatments can be gradually increased, and eventually the injections are no longer necessary.

For each condition, a Naturopathic Physician can customize a variety of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to suit each patient. Many relatively healthy patients chose to receive periodic injections because it boosted their overall well being for up to several months.

What is the theoretical Basis for IV Nutrient Therapy?

Intravenous administration of nutrients can achieve serum concentrations not obtainable with oral, or even intramuscular (IM), administration. Let us look at two examples of nutrients, Vitamin C and Magnesium, that are important in the intravenous treatment.

As an oral dose of vitamin C is increased gradually, gastrointestinal absorption is saturated and there is a sharp increase in the kidney clearance of the vitamin. When the daily intake of vitamin C is increased 12-fold, the plasma concentration increases by only 25 percent. In contrast, IV administration of 50 g/day of vitamin C resulted in a mean peak plasma level of 80 mg/dL – an increase of almost 80 times. This high plasma concentrations are important in helping cancer patients.

Various nutrients have been shown to exert pharmacological effects, which are in many cases dependent on the concentration of the nutrient. For example, an antiviral effect of vitamin C has been demonstrated at a concentration of 10-15 mg/dL, a level achievable with IV but not oral therapy. At a concentration of 88 mg/dL in vitro, vitamin C destroyed 72 percent of the histamine present. However, lower concentrations of vitamin C attainable by giving several grams in an IV push can produce an antihistamine effect. Such an effect would have implications for the treatment of various allergic conditions.

Similarly, oral supplementation with magnesium results in little or no change in serum magnesium concentrations, whereas IV administration can double or triple the serum levels at least for a short period of time. Magnesium ions promote relaxation of both blood vessels and the smooth muscles of the lung – effects that might be useful in treating vasospastic angina and bronchial asthma, respectively.

As such, these and other nutrients exert additional beneficial effects when present in high concentrations. In addition to having direct pharmacological effects, intravenous nutrient therapy can be more effective than oral or IM treatment for correcting intracellular nutrient deficits.

 

 

 

 

Take these steps to better sleep tonight

By Dr. Joanna Rosenfeld ND, RHN

We are told to get 8 hours of sleep a night each night. Also to drink 8 glasses of water, while we put it 8 hours of work every day, eat 3 meals a day and exercise at least 30 minutes a day. Did we just randomly choose these numbers, or is there science behind it?

Let’s deal with sleep first. As we all know, everyone is different so applying one number to everyone just doesn’t cut it. For adults, the average number of hours needed to feel rested and reduce risk of disease is between 7-9 hours. Knowing the exact number for you depends on a few factors. If you are finding it hard to stay awake during the day, need coffee to help you make it through the workday or feel the need to take naps, it is a good sign that you aren’t getting the sleep quantity and/or quality that you need.

As a general rule, we don’t sleep enough – kids, dogs, work, errrands, friends etc. all cut into our precious sleep hours.  But here are some ways to improve your quality of sleep, even if you can’t increase the hours.

BEST SLEEP PRACTICES:

1.    Aim to fall asleep by 10:30pm. Research has shown that it’s not only the hours you sleep, but when you sleep that affects how rested you feel in the mornings. The hours before midnight are the most restorative, in large part because it coincides with our natural circadian rhythm. Toward evening, your body ramps up production of a rest-promoting neurotransmitter called adenosine and, triggered by the absence of sunlight, begins producing melatonin, which helps to trigger the sleep cycle. Also, our cortisol (stress hormone) is lowest around 10:30pm helping us to feel tired. Part of the reason you may feel a “second wind” late at night is that you have missed the cortisol low point, and cortisol will increase steadily until it peaks around 7am. If your natural bedtime is much later than 10:30pm, focus on shifting your bedtime 15 minutes earlier per week, each week, until you reach 10:30pm.

2.    Avoid screens (phone, TV, computer, tablet etc.) before bed.
Screens before bed inhibit melatonin production, making it harder to fall, and stay, asleep. Put your devices away at least 1 hour before bed, and avoid plugging them in at your bedside table, where you are likely to reach for them in the night.

3.    Dim all the lights in your house around 9pm to start signaling to your body that it is time for sleep. Melatonin production is shut down when there is light (natural or artificial), so dimming the lights will increase your melatonin levels. Keep your room dark at night with blackout blinds, or an eye pillow if you can’t get your room dark enough.

4.    Develop a bedtime routine.  We are great at doing this with kids but somehow we expect that after a busy day at work and at home, we can just fall asleep the instant our head hits the pillow. Unfortunately, the body is not conditioned that way. The reason why bedtime routines work so well is that the ritual prepares your body and mind to wind down. Some of my favourites include having a sleepy time tea (with natural sedative herbs such as chamomile, passionflower, valerian root and catnip), having a bath, meditating, writing, reading and doing some yin yoga poses.

5.    Don’t check the time, especially on your phone. As you feel the minutes tick by, it’s natural to want to know just how much precious sleep time you are missing. But checking the time only makes us more anxious about our lack of sleep and gets our mind going – especially if you happen to see that work email pop on your phone while you are checking the time. The same applies if you find yourself waking in the middle of the night. Trust that your alarm will go off when you need to wake up and try to ease yourself back into sleep with some deep breaths.

6.    Have a high protein snack before bed. One of the most common reasons for waking up in the middle of the night is due to  low blood sugar. This is especially true for people who have blood sugar dysregulation, or who indulge in high carbohydrate or high sugar meals in the evenings. One way to help stabilize our blood sugar until the morning is to have a high protein snack before bed, like a boiled egg or a small handful of nuts. (Side note: another reason for this early morning wakening is related to our stress response and an early rise of cortisol, which your Naturopathic Doctor can help manage)

7.    Keep a journal next to your bed and record any thoughts you might be having before falling asleep, especially if you tend to lie in bed with a “to-do list” running through your mind. Jotting down a few things before bed will put your mind at ease and help you drift off to sleep.

8.    Avoid exercising late at night. Exercise, especially intense exercise, will increase your cortisol levels and your body temperature, making make it harder to fall asleep. It also makes it difficult to properly re-fuel after your late night workout and typically means you are eating a meal before bed. Exercising earlier in the day will help with sleep so don’t abandon it altogether, but make sure it is 3-4 hours before bedtime.

9.    Watch your caffeine intake. Even though you may feel like you can have an espresso at dinner, and then have no trouble falling asleep the reality is that caffeine does affect our quality and quantity of sleep. Studies have shown that coffee decreases our levels of melatonin throughout the night, making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep. Opt for some lower caffeine options during the day such as green tea.

10.  Nix the alcohol. A couple of drinks may make it easier to fall asleep, but it alters our sleep cycle and causes sleep disruptions later in the night, especially for women. It also causes us to spend less time in REM sleep, which is important for learning and consolidating memories. The effects are directly correlated with how many drinks you have, so moderation is key.

How Meditation can change your health, in just minutes a day.

By Dr. Joanna Rosenfeld ND

Since you have taken an active interest in your own health care treatment, then you have likely heard about the benefits of meditation and mindfulness. But do you really know why regular meditation is so beneficial? Common self-reported benefits include reduced levels of anxiety, depression and pain; data which have been reinforced through many scientific trials. Practicing mindfulness through meditation improves our brain function, our immune system, our propensity for developing chronic disease and even slows down the aging process.

Stress and Your Health
An estimated 60-90% of health care visits are related to mind-body stress induced conditions. The stress response, also called the “fight or flight response”, is the body’s way of managing a threat – real or imagined. The threat creates a downstream release of epinephrine and norepinephrine and then cortisol into the bloodstream. These hormones cause increased heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate as well as increased blood sugar levels.  If the body is exposed to stress for long periods of time, cortisol levels will remain high in the blood stream. Continuous elevated cortisol levels contribute to increased levels of inflammation, weight gain, decreased immune function, higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease and accelerated aging. So what helps us in the short term to manage stressful conditions can really hurt us in the long run.

Immune System
Stress decreases the effectiveness of the immune system, which is why people often get sick following periods of stress. Rats who were kept in isolation, which is stressful environment for them, experienced much slower healing time than rats who were kept in a social environment. If they were given some form of stimulation, their wounds healed much more quickly. This indicates that although stress does down-regulate immunity and wound healing, these effects can be mitigated by changing the environment, and stress levels.
Meditation can help provide an immune boost. In a group of people receiving the flu vaccine, regular meditators produced more antibodies to the flu virus than non-meditators. Meditation can also be used in conjunction with other treatments to improve outcomes. For example, in patients with psoriasis, those who listened to a guided meditation while receiving conventional UV treatment had faster time to skin clearing than controls receiving UV treatment but no guided meditation.

Genetic Profile
Meditation has also been shown to have an effect at the level of gene expression. Researchers analyzed gene profiles of subjects who had never practiced meditation, and then again after completing an 8 week daily meditation program.  After 8 weeks the genetic profile showed increased activity, of certain beneficial genes responsible for energy, blood sugar control and slowed aging. There was also decreased activity of harmful genes, coding for inflammation. These changes were seen before and after just one session of meditation, demonstrating that meditation changes our genetic profile in just minutes.

Functional and Structural Brain Changes
Meditation practice is able to influence both the structure and function of the brain. Long-term meditators have increased gamma activity, which is associated with peak concentration and higher levels of cognitive functioning. Increases in gamma activity were even seen in people who had only been practicing meditation for one week.
In addition to functional changes in the brain, there are also structural differences in the brain of people who meditate. As people age, the brain shrinks and loses grey matter. However, 50 year old meditators have the same amount of grey matter as 25 year old non-meditators, showing meditation has a protective effect on the aging brain.

Eliciting the Relaxation Response
So, how can you incorporate meditation and mindfulness into your day so that can you start reaping the multitude of benefits? There are many meditation facilities; or online resources and CDs that will help you get started. Herbert Benson recommends something even more simple, and benefits are seen in just 10 minutes a day.

1. Choose an appropriate environment
Ideally chose a quiet and calm environment with as few distractions as possible.

2. Find a Mental Stimulus
Choose a word, thought, phrase repeated silently or aloud. This is a way to break the train of distracting thoughts that enter your mind. Close your eyes or use a soft gaze. Try to coordinate your inhale and exhale breath as you repeat the sentence or word. Examples of words include “peace”, “one”, and “trust” or sentences such as “I am relaxed” or “I am breathing in calm and breathing out tension”.

3. Adopt a Attitude
Adopt a passive attitude and when distracting thoughts occur, they should be disregarded and attention redirected to the repetition. Do not worry about the outcome of the exercise, or how well you are performing. Adopt a “let it happen” attitude. This is the most important part of the process – wandering thoughts are expected, and it is important that you acknowledge them and then return to your repetition.

4. Positioning
Sit or lie down in a comfortable position to prevent undue muscle tension. This may mean sitting cross-legged, or lying down but be careful not to fall asleep! Swaying or rocking may prevent falling asleep if you have a tendency to do so during this practice.

It’s never too late to start enjoying the physiological, emotional and spiritual benefits of this rewarding practice – your body and mind will thank you!

Questions about this article? Contact Dr. Rosenfeld at [email protected]

Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

By Dr. Joanna Rosenfeld ND, RHN

The holidays are a wonderful opportunity to spend time with family and friends, and indulge in some holiday cheer, but it can also be the time we put on a few extra pounds.

The New England Journal of Medicine reported that the average holiday weight gain is 1 pound, and 5 pounds for people that are already overweight. This doesn’t seem like much but unfortunately, we don’t end up losing that weight later in the year, so the pounds can start to stack up.

Follow these 5 realistic tips to help avoid weight gain without depriving yourself of the holiday spirit!

1. Eat your breakfast
Have a high protein breakfast to start off your day. During the holidays many people skip breakfast as a way to “save” calories for Christmas dinner or other holiday parties. This practice makes you more likely to overindulge at dinner time, and it also wreaks havoc on your blood sugar levels, sending signals to the body to store as much fat as possible. Examples of healthy breakfasts include a homemade omelettes with vegetables or oatmeal with nuts, chia seeds, hemp hearts, ground flax seed and berries.

2. Exercise!
Take time to enjoy the outdoors over the holidays. Bundle up and suggest a family walk, or snowshoe, as a way to connect, expend some energy, and get some much needed stress relief! Lifting weights an hour before your big meal will set you up for muscle building, instead of fat storage.

3. Three Bite Rule
There are so many sweets and deserts circulating at this time of year. Choose a desert that you really love (not one that you are eating just because it is there), and have 3 bites of it. This will satisfy your tastebuds, and you won’t feel like you are missing out on anything.

4. Water Breaks
Alcohol consumption tends to increase around this time of year, which can pack on a lot of sneaky calories, and lead to dehydration. Alternate every alcoholic beverage with a glass of still or sparkling water. This will keep you hydrated and it’s an excellent way to avoid holiday hangovers.

5. Get your Zzz’s
Remember that this is your vacation time. After the winter holidays many people return to work feeling more exhausted and burnt out than when they left. Take this opportunity to recharge and re-set for the New Year ahead! Sleeping 7-8 hours a night will help you manage your weight, boost your immune system and regulate your hormones, among many other things!

Have a Happy, Healthy Holiday!

Happy Holidays?

By Sheila Fauman, Clinical Counsellor

It is supposed to be a wonderful time of year, but you might be feeling stressed or maybe a little down. Know that you are not alone. Many people struggle over the holidays, and there’s good reason for it. Nevermind the rainy, dark days, how about money stress, trying to manage family dynamics, and did you check your list twice?  You feel like you have too many social engagements…or maybe you feel like you’re the only one not invited to the party?  Amongst all of its good cheer, the holiday season can often be a hard time of year for many of us. So, here are a few things you can do to help you through the holidays and optimize your mental health.

  • Make sleep a priority.
  • Schedule time for you – read a book, watch tv, sleep in, go for a massage.
  • Focus on the big picture…do not sweat the small stuff.
  • Make a budget… stick to it.
  • Put it in your schedule.
  • Eat well when you can. Give yourself permission to enjoy the goodies.
  • Reach out to a friend – nobody is as busy as
  • you think they are.

Wishing you all the best and good mental health for the holiday season!

Why Diets Fail and the Importance of Integrated Nutrition

-by Dr Erica Kubanek, ND

You are smart and health conscious.

When you learn about a new diet, whether you want to be a leaner you or be the healthiest you possible, you will jump on that diet bandwagon. And why not? Isn’t it backed up by the latest nutritional research? Hasn’t your friend or that celeb tried it with so much success? So what if it flies in the face of the last ULTIMATE DIET SOLUTION you tried?

Now you are eating just as the book/talk show/health guide/expert has told you. Not long after that you start to slip a little. Then you slip a little more. Suddenly you feel like you are right back where you started: feeling terrible or tubby or both. Maybe you beat yourself up because you couldn’t stick to that ideal diet. Was it your life that got in the way of your diet? Your lack of will power? Why do your diets always fail?

The diets marketed to you serve to sell books, get ratings or suit politics and food industries. No matter how much research or opinion backs them up authors, companies and governments do not know what will work best for you as an individual. There is no one-size-fits-all diet that suits everyone. Instead consider that your ideal diet is just as unique as you are. No book or nutritional research can tell you what diet is best for you.

But there is a perfect diet for you. This perfect diet isn’t based on the leading experts. Instead it is based on your genetics, your ancestry, your preferences, your habits, your budget, your community and your values. This perfect diet is uniquely YOU.

This is integrated nutrition.

Your nutrition shouldn’t be dictated by politics or research. Instead it needs to be dictated by your intuition, your body awareness and your trusted professionals.

Integrated nutrition is a whole systems approach to life and food. It assumes that your nutrition is not separate from the rest of your life. It mirrors your values and your purpose. Integrated nutrition considers that ‘food for your soul’ (healthy relationships, a spiritual practice and fulfilling work) is just as important as the food on your plate. When you are considering your cravings or your nutrient deficiencies we can also look at how these mirror your life. Hone your intuition and body sense so that you can be the ultimate expert in what is right for you.

How do you discover this diet? Joshua Rosenthal, author of Integrative Nutrition, has a handy way of discovering where to start.

Try this out:
– Choose 3 different diet solutions you have come across and appeal to you
– Write down 5 aspects of these diets that you think are important
– Think about how this diet would suit your lifestyle and body
– Feel free to name this diet!
– Voila! This can be the beginning of nutrition plan that works incredibly well for you.

Dr Mark Hyman MD of the Functional Medicine Institute, author and educator has just recently created a new diet. His is called the Pegan diet. It’s simply a marriage of Paleolithic and Vegan diets.

Two other experts have distilled health eating to the most basic principles that would fit nearly any healthy diet and lifestyle. Aaron E Caroll wrote Simple Rules for Healthy Eating for the NY Times recently. They are as follows:

1. Get as much of your nutrition as possible from a variety of completely unprocessed foods
b) eat lightly-processed foods less often
c) eat highly-processed foods even less often
2. Eat as much home-cooked food as possible, which should be prepared according to rule 1
3. Use salt and fats, including butter and oil, as needed in food preparation
4. When you do eat, try to eat out restaurants that follow the same rules
5. Drink mostly water, but some alcohol, coffee and other beverages are fine
6. Treat all beverages with calories in them as you would alcohol.
7. Eat with other people, especially people you care about as often as possible.

Exceptional author and journalist Michael Pollan is even more succinct. He states that we should follow a single, simple rule: eat food, not too much, mostly plants.

Now is the time to start to find your own unique and authentic diet. Let the naturopathic doctors at Qi Integrated Health guide you to find your ideal diet through integrated nutrition.

Questions about this article? Contact [email protected]

Clinical Pilates

with Brooke MacGivery and Amy Kubaneck

People who are injured or looking to fix a chronic problem are best suited for our Clinical Pilates program. You will be assessed by our Physiotherapist, Brooke MacGillivary and she will prescribe and supervise a Fletcher Pilates® movement program based on your personal needs. Follow up with Brooke is required to ensure that you reach your desired goal. Both physiotherapy and clinical Pilates appointments can be covered by your health insurance.

TREATMENTS
  • Back Pain
  • Joint Pain
  • Immobility
  • Core Strength
  • Post-Pregnancy
  • Post-Surgery
  • Injury Recovery
  • Sport Specific
  • TMJ
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Pregnancy
  • Balance
  • Inflammation
  • Breathing

How does Clinical Pilates work? It’s very simple. Make an appointment with our physiotherapist. Once she has determined if this is a good program for you, you can schedule your Clinical Pilates sessions. She will advise and help design your program. After a determined number of sessions, you will book a follow-up appointment with Brooke. This process can be repeated as many times as necessary. ​
Why should I do clinical Pilates? This program is a brilliant way to make use of your medical benefits. But the best reason to start a clinical Pilates program is to address your concerns with a team of professionals that are collaborating to help you feel better.

Can I practice at home?  Yes! We will make sure that you are equipped with some easy and effective tools to practice that will help you feel better for a lifetime. ​
How much does it cost?

Fee Structure per total
Single Private Session $95
5 Private Sessions $90 $450
10 Private Sessions $85 $850
20 Private Sessions $80 $1600

How do I get started? Call Qi to book an appointment.  604.742.8383

Introducing Online Booking with Qi!

This month, we launched our new Qi website. Come on over and check it out! http://qiintegratedhealth.com.

With the launch of our new site, we have also added the convenience of Online Booking for our existing clients. To visit our online booking site, click the “Book an Appointment” button on our website or click here. We are currently offering this service for Chiropractic, Acupuncture and Registered Massage Therapy appointments.

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Once you are at our Online Booking Site:

  • Choose the modality of treatment, and select the type of appointment you wish to book.
  • Select your appointment and create your online booking account by entering in your First and Last Name under “New to our site?”

online booking

  • Enter one of two things to complete your account registration:

a) Your home address; or

b) The last 4 digits of your mobile number (or whichever phone number you provided us when you booked your first appointment).

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Now that you have created your account, you can book the appointment you previously selected. You will be given the option to add “notes” to your booking, which could include the reason you are seeking treatment (injury, pain, etc).

Benefits to creating an online account with Qi Integrated Health:

  • Book appointments online, any day and any time.
  • Access your “My Info” which allows you to:
    • View your scheduled appointments
    • Email yourself your schedule
    • View your visit and purchase history (convenient if you’d like to know which practitioner you saw last or to verify if you have all of your receipts)
    • Update your contact information

We have added this new service at Qi for your convenience and are always available to talk with you via phone or email as well. We would love to hear your feedback about our new website and your online booking experience! If you have any questions, comments, concerns or suggestions, please contact us at 604-742-8383 or [email protected]

-Article prepared by Nora Kistchouk, Qi Integrated Health Clinic Manager

H1N1 Vaccine; my humble opinion

There seems to be a lot of confusion and controversy surrounding the topic of the H1N1 swine flu vaccine.  Here is my opinion:  don’t get vaccinated.  I’m not.  This is a flu virus.  The human immune system is set up to adapt to new strains of viruses all of the time.  This is how it learns.  Statistics show no increase in yearly deaths related to the influenza virus worldwide; we are at the normal average calculated over the last 20 years.  Other studies show that flu vaccines don’t even work.  Media has blown the death toll numbers out of proportion.  Of the 3,600 deaths being reported, only 257 are listed on the Center for Disease Control (CDC)’s website as having tested positive for the virus whereas the rest were deaths related to pneumonia, a bacterial complication.

 

To me, the risks involved in getting the flu shot far outweigh any potential (not even proven) benefit.

 

New studies out of China have found that the Indigo plant, from which 3 Chinese herbs (Qing Dai, Da Qing Ye and Ban Lan Gen) are derived, has been effective in treating the swine flu.  These herbs have been known for some time in Chinese Medicine to be antiviral agents.

 

Here is a website with a good summary of reasons not to get vaccinated: http://www.chronogram.com/issue/2009/11/Whole+Living/What-the-F?page=1

 

I was sent the links to the following series of youtube videos.  I imagine being Dr. Null, knowing all that information, would be somewhat frustrating.

Part 1.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3XlJB7J5-o&NR=1Part 2.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ch5OuzB9L48Part 3.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAgWO2yq1k8&NR=1