Monday, July 18, 2011

How's Your Body Chemistry?!

When was the last time somebody asked you that? Probably never. People may ask you how you feel or how is your headache or how is your leg doing, but they never ask about your body’s chemistry. Yet that may be the most important factor in your life and health. They do not ask because you cannot not tell them, and you cannot tell them because you just do not know. In fact, no one can really know what their body chemistry should be. You see everyone is different and only your body knows what your own chemistry should be. What is your normal blood sugar, histamine level, adrenaline, cortisone, and serotonin level at this very moment. You don’t know, you can’t know nor can you know what it should be. No one does and there are thousands of other chemicals which are vital to your life and health. Science is not even able to guess what is the average for many of these chemicals, let alone what is normal for any particular person. There are, more than likely, some that have not even been discovered yet. Everyone’s body chemistry is different and everyone reacts differently to changes in body chemistry.

You need look no further than your local bar to prove this point. The consumption of alcohol changes your body chemistry and changes in your body chemistry effect how you react and perform. When some people drink alcohol, changes in their body chemistry makes them belligerent, while others may become mellow. Some become withdrawn, others are the life of a party. Some become somber, almost morose and others laugh and have a good time. Some get sick or have a hangover the next day and others seem to experience no after effects. One thing we do know about alcohol, it effects your judgment, your reflexes, your reaction time and your eye-hand coordination. That is why the law will not allow you to drive a motor vehicle when your blood alcohol level reaches a certain point. But who established that point? Like every chemical, and alcohol is a chemical, the proper level is probably different for everyone. Some people, well within the legal limits for blood alcohol, may still be functioning so poorly that driving an automobile could be fatal. This is but one chemical. There are literally hundreds, maybe thousands of chemicals in the body all of which affect your body’s performance in one way or another.

There is another aspect of body chemistry that is important to your chiropractor. You see the millions of glands and cells that produce all the chemicals in your body are controlled by the nerve system. You cannot perform any function in life without the production of chemicals. Everything from laughing to sleeping, to digesting food depends upon the production of chemicals and doing those things at your best depends upon having just the right chemicals produced in just the right amounts. If there is an interference in your nerve system due to what chiropractors call a vertebral subluxation, then your body chemistry is going to be altered and your body will not work as it should. Chiropractors do not know what your body chemistry should be. As we said before, no one but the inner wisdom of your body knows what your body chemistry should be, what chemicals need to be produced, when they are needed and in what amounts.

But one thing your chiropractor does know. He or she knows when there is a vertebra out of place in your spine, when there is interference in your nerve system that is altering the message from the brain to the millions of little chemical factories in your body and upsetting your body chemistry. What is more, the chiropractor can correct that nerve-interfering subluxation quickly and efficiently so that your body has the greatest opportunity of normalizing your body chemistry and keeping it normal. Regular visits to your chiropractor are vital to every aspect of your life and your health, including your body chemistry.

What do ChiropracTORS do?

It is important to us that you not only understand what we are doing for you at this chiropractic office but why we are doing it. One of the biggest reasons why people do not refer others for care is because they are not exactly sure what we do. Either they misunderstand or they are simply unable to communicate it. The basic principles of chiropractic are actually quite simple, so simple in fact, that anyone should be able to explain them to family, friends and associates.

A few of the basic concepts taught to chiropractic students in Philosophy 101 are so important that everyone under chiropractic care should have an understanding of them. One such concept is called the “Safety Pin Cycle.” This is a simple illustration of how the body works (note its resemblance to its name). The brain sends out messages to all of the cells of the body (i.e., tissue cells) via the efferent (EFF) pathway (that is the part of the nervous system that carries messages leaving the brain). The cells report back to the brain about their condition and needs via the afferent (AFF) pathway. In this way, the brain controls all of the functions of our bodies. While this drawing is not exactly physiologically or anatomically correct, it is adequate to describe the transmission of the nervous impulse throughout the body.

If there is an interference in this communication, it reduces the body’s ability to act and react. The tissue cell cannot remain in perfect organization if there is an alteration in the communication in the efferent system. This is exactly what occurs in the case of a subluxation. Misalignment of one of the bones of the spine can interfere with and alter the message from the brain to the cells of the body. This ultimately changes the function of the cells, and over time, the condition of the entire body.

Of course, we would not expect that our patients would discuss efferent and afferent pathways with their friends and family, but they could describe what a chiropractor does in a fashion similar to the following:
“It’s important for everyone to be under chiropractic care because small misalignments in the bones of the spine can cause interference in the nervous system and keep your body from working as effectively as it should or could. Everyone knows that the brain controls the entire functioning of the body. It does this by sending messages from the brain down the spinal cord and out along all of the nerves to every cell in your body. Spinal misalignments can interfere with this communication and keep your body from working the way it should.”

It is important to share what you know about chiropractic with the people around you so their bodies can work as effectively as possible. You do not need to give them some lengthy, technical explanation about how the nervous system works, just that the body will always work better without interference. That’s not only what chiropractors do but why they do it.

Understanding What We Do

One of the major differences between the practice of chiropractic and that of a therapeutic approach such as medicine is the desire to have knowledgeable, understanding patients. The physician often neither wants nor cares for the patient to know everything that he is doing. This is not a criticism, it just reflects the two different approaches. It is not necessary for the patient to understand the medical approach. They are totally uninvolved with the process. The patient does not participate in the surgery, he or she just lies there. The patient merely swallows the medication. Everything is done by the doctor. The practice of medicine is performed on the patient or done for the patient.

Chiropractic is different.

Chiropractic is based upon the principle that the patient’s body does the healing. It maintains health and it actually makes the adjustment, using the force introduced into the spine by the chiropractor’s hands. Second, chiropractic is directed toward health and increasing one’s potential for an improved quality of life in all areas. Obviously, this takes cooperation on the part of the patient. We will adjust you so that you can get the maximum benefit from your exercise. But you still must do the exercise. We correct your subluxations so that your body, free of nerve interference, can get the maximum benefit from the food you eat. But we cannot eat the food for you. Chiropractic care is a cooperative effort, from the actual adjustment to the patient taking responsibility for being regular in his or her care.
The medical doctor thinks he is smarter than his patients so the patients should just do as they are told. The chiropractor works with your body’s innate intelligence which is smarter than all the chiropractors and medical doctors in the world put together. As a result, it is the chiropractor’s desire that you, the patient, learn more and more about the chiropractic way of life so that you can take a more active role in maintaining your health and directing your life and the chiropractor can step back and do the one thing he or she does best, which is correcting these subluxations whenever they occur.

To be a participant in chiropractic, it is imperative that you, the patient, understand as much as you can about chiropractic and the “above-down, inside-out” approach to health care. If this term is unfamiliar to you, please ask your chiropractor to explain its meaning. You see, we believe that people truly want to be knowledgeable about their life and health and not just be a bystander to what’s being done to them. We believe that you can see by now that the therapeutic approach has made us a drug-dependent, disease-fearful society and while it may have limited success in the treatment of disease, it has very little to do with health.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Amazon Addiction

Hello, My name is Rachel and I have an Amazon addiction.

Ok, so I am a nursing mom...which MEANS I have ALOT of 10-15 minute intervals during the day to browse the internet, update facebook, etc while nursing my son. This has become a bit of a problem for my checkbook. Amazon has become one of my go to's while nursing which means about every 2-3 days I have a (surprise) new package waiting for me at my doorstep. I LOVE getting things in the mail so most of the time this is a good thing.

Here's a list of a few things I've purchased in the past 2 months. Cloth diapers, baby legs, a Zoku popsicle maker...which is AMAZING by the way- it can make popsicles in 7 minutes!!, a popsicle recipe book ICE POP JOY for said popsicle maker, a dehydrator, a mandelin to cut things up for my dehydrator, and wait for it...the most recent purchase...a 15 ft 48in deep above ground pool with a salt water filter for the backyard. Hmmmm just listing all of those items makes me want to jump back on Amazon to see what other goodies I can find.

I know, I have a problem but I keep thinking about all the fun my son (4 months old) and I are going to have using all of these treats when he's a little older. I think I'm going to take a little break from Amazon for a while and enjoy all of my recent purchases...especially the pool once it comes in and we can set it up.

If you're a nursing mom, what do you find yourself doing during your sessions?