Archive for the ‘Symptoms’ Category

 

Osteoporosis and Pilates

July 19th, 2010 by Rebekah Rotstein


       

As baby boomers segue from child-rearing to retirement, they find themselves bombarded by the media with information about osteoporosis. It makes sense, considering that more than 44 million American men and women age 50 and older have osteoporosis or its precursor, osteopenia. So between news articles about calcium and vitamin D, Sally Field promoting the drug Boniva on TV commercials and the now-ubiquitous term "weight-bearing exercise," we are all hearing a great deal about this epidemic.

Yet controversy abounds, with new findings questioning the benefits of calcium as well as the risks versus benefits of osteoporosis medications. The conflicting information is enough to overwhelm even the most media-savvy consumer. But the one continuously advocated method of addressing the condition is exercise. Not only does exercise help to maintain and build strong bones, but it can improve balance and reflexes and thereby prevent falls, the most dangerous threat to those with fragile bones. According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, 60 percent of those who fracture a hip still cannot walk independently a year later. Clearly, the goal should be to stay strong, agile and upright. (more…)


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Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Understanding and Treating Zinc Deficiency in Celiac Disease

July 13th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

The mineral zinc is classified as an essential nutrient due to the vital functions it performs in our bodies.  It is found in almost every cell of the body with highest concentrations in the liver, pancreas, kidney, bone, and muscle. High concentrations occur in the brain, middle ear, eye, prostate gland, sperm, skin, hair, and nails. This micronutrient is essential for the activity of approximately 100 enzymes. Enzymes promote biochemical reactions in the body.

Zinc supports a healthy immune system. It is needed for wound healing and DNA synthesis. It helps maintain our sense of taste and smell and is involved in energy metabolism, hemoglobin production, carbon dioxide transport, prostaglandin function, synthesis of collagen, protein synthesis, and vitamin A metabolism. Zinc is important for male fertility. It supports normal growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence. (more…)

Editors’ note: This animal study investigating the effects of Lactobacillus rhamnosus, a strain of probiotic bacteria, on ulcers of the stomach lining of rats demonstrated that bacteria placed directly into the stomach significantly and according to dose reduced gastric ulcer size.  If the results of this animal research are reproduced in humans, it would demonstrate that probiotics may hasten recovery for people suffering from stomach ulcers.  The bacteria did not affect the function of normal gastric mucosa but normalized those with abnormal changes during ulceration. (more…)

 

Vitamin A was first identified in 1913 because of its crucial role in vision.  Subsequent discovery of its many other duties show that a deficiency will cause a broad range of health problems.

Vitamin A is not a single compound but actually comprises a fat-soluble family of molecules that includes retinol, retinal, retinoic acid, and retinyl ester. The term vitamin A also includes certain plant carotenoids called provitamin A because they are dietary precursors of retinol.

Vitamin A is essential for normal vision and eyeball health, a properly functioning immune system, gene regulation, reproduction, embryonic development, health and protection of all the tissues that line the body, including skin and mucosa of the lungs, digestive tract, urinary tract, and genital tract, bone metabolism and normal growth and strong teeth in children.

 

Vitamin A Deficiency

The United States National Institutes of Health recommends testing vitamin A levels in people with celiac disease at diagnosis. This is because vitamin A deficiency is common in celiac disease. Deficiency can result from incomplete digestion, absorption, or metabolism. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Osteomalacia in Adult Celiac Disease

July 5th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Osteomalacia is common in celiac disease. Osteomalacia can occur at any age. It children, it is called rickets.  It is a metabolic bone disorder that involves slow loss of minerals from bone tissue throughout the skeleton, stemming from inadequate absorption of vitamin D. As minerals are dissolved from bone tissue to provide for essential functions elsewhere in the body, bones gradually lose their hardness.

Consequently, pronounced softening of the bones characterizes osteomalacia. Soft bones become deformed, especially bones of the arms, legs, spine, thorax and pelvis. The softer bones have a normal amount of collagen, a strong fibrous protein in the bone matrix (osteoid) that gives bone its structure and tensile capacity, but there is not sufficient calcium and phosphate minerals available to properly mineralize or be deposited in the osteoid to give it necessary hardness. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Health in Depth: Muscle Weakness in Celiac Disease

July 3rd, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Muscle weakness is the lack of muscle strength to perform physical work that we should be able to do, such as lifting objects, climbing steps or simply walking or getting up from a chair. Muscle weakness is different from muscle fatigue, which is the lack of energy to continue physical work once begun. Muscle weakness is also different from lassitude, or chronic fatigue, which is the feeling of tiredness or exhaustion but without loss of muscle strength.

Muscle weakness is common in celiac disease. It may stem from one or more nutrient deficiencies, associated disorders or complications. This article addresses only nutritional causes of muscle weakness resulting from malabsorption and/or loss of minerals from diarrhea or vomiting. (more…)

Claire Houston, MS, LCMHC

Celiac Disease, on the Couch

June 30th, 2010 by Claire Houston, MS, LCMHC

Kathleen (not her real name) came to counseling because of anxiety. After an intake, we identified several areas in her life that sounded like they were contributing to her difficulties. We started working with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, a system that looks at the thought sequence you use, and where a distorted belief can be corrected and thereby relieve suffering.

After teaching her a series of formulas, she was able to apply the principles herself when not in the office with me. This is a very effective psychotherapy intervention, that is so useful that many insurance companies paying for counseling expect to see it as part of a treatment plan. But, it did not seem to offer Kathleen the relief I was expecting. So, we continued looking elsewhere in her life for the source and solution of her anxiety. If it wasn’t her thinking causing it, perhaps it was situational. (more…)

 

 In 2007, Gluten Free Works published "Recognizing Celiac Disease," the first work to present over 300 signs, symptoms, associated disorders and complications gathered from documented medical research from around the world.  The book proved that researchers were finding hundreds of health problems associated with celiac disease and gluten.  This list is now being used by celiac disease centers, national celiac organizations and health organizations to help identify at risk patients and determine whether patient symptoms are consistent with celiac disease.

But how can one disorder cause so many problems?  Here's a look at one way...nutritional deficiencies. (more…)

probiotics celiac glutenProteins produced from partial breakdown of microorganisms are often recognized by the body’s immune system as foreign antigens triggering production of antibodies that may be detected in the blood.

Such antibodies include proteins from the cell walls (outer membranes) or flagella of the bacteria Escherichia coli and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae (Baker’s or Brewer’s yeast) that are found in Crohn’s disease. Stimulation of the immune system by these proteins can also confuse the body into thinking that it needs to continue fighting an ongoing battle against an invader. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Niacin (Vitamin B3) deficiency in celiac disease

June 23rd, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Niacin, also called vitamin B3, is required by all the cells of our body making it essential for vitality and life itself.

Niacin is essential for keeping our skin and digestive tract healthy, our brain and nervous system  functioning normally, certain key cell processes repaired, our adrenal glands producing steroid hormones at demand levels, sex glands producing the hormones estrogen, progesterone and testosterone and, most especially, for producing energy to keep our body alive.1

When absorbed from the small intestinal tract, niacin becomes part of a process including more than 200 enzymes involved in metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fatty acids, that is, chemical reactions that maintain life.1 Niacin is stored by the liver.2

Niacin must be digested to release its absorbable forms, nicotinamide and nicotinic acid. These molecules are absorbed across the intestinal lining at low concentrations by sodium-dependent facilitated diffusion, meaning they need help to get into the bloodstream.1 (more…)