Maximizing your energy, slowing aging, losing weight, and preventing diabetes.

6a00e55255b462883401a511af6c64970c-200wiI just spent a weekend day at a seminar on mitochondria. Mito… what?  You may remember vaguely from biology, those little oval energy generators inside cells. So what do they have to do with the skin and the environment, and why bother to read about them?

The answer is that are the key producers of the energy currency of the cells, known as ATP, and they have a number of roles in signaling and affecting the fate and function of other organs of the body.  Good energy, control of obesity, avoidance of diabetes, all require good mitochondrial function.

Mitochondrial function decreases with aging, and DNA mutations, that we have limited control over. But we do have some control over our exposure to persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) and other environmental toxins and medications that harm the mitochondria and reduce their function. Toxins include the ever-present BPA, and plasticizers in vinyl. Caloric excess, alcohol, and fructose are also toxins to mitochondria. Drugs that poison mitochondria include aspirin, acetaminophen, Metformin, and Statins.

We can increase the activity of mitochondria by fasting, moderate exercise, cold exposure. Green tea, tumeric, resveratrol from grapes, and quercetin from capers, onions and apples are all natural food substances that support the mitochondria. Magnesium, Co Q 10, and alpha lipoic acid are supplements that help mitochondria.

So if you are interested in maximizing your energy, slowing aging, losing weight, and preventing or controlling diabetes, some do’s and don’ts are listed here as a starting point. You have an opportunity to take control of the chief energy source in your cells.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 8]


6a00e55255b462883401a73d93dc24970d-300wiA Rising Tide in Complementary and Alternative Medicine

In an estimate from the National Health Institute, a nationwide government survey from December 2008 states that approximately 38 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 years and over and approximately 12 percent of children use some form of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). And almost half of the adults between 50-59 use some form of CAM. In the six years since that study, the number has risen considerably.

The World Health Organization estimates that between 65 to 80 percent of the world’s population–about 3 billion people–rely on what we call alternative medicine as their primary form of health care. 

In 1998, the American Medical Association (AMA) introduced Resolution 514, “encouraging its members to become better informed regarding alternative medicine and to participate in appropriate studies of it.” Almost one-third of American medical schools–among them Harvard, Yale, John’s Hopkins, and Georgetown Universities–now offer coursework in alternative methods. It’s a relief to be able to practice Holistic Dermatology in the open now, and to treat skin naturally.

The American Holistic Medical Association (AHMA) was founded in 1978 to unite licensed physicians who practice holistic medicine. It is the oldest holistic medicine organization of its kind, and many of today’s national leaders in holistic medicine got their start as members of the AHMA. Since its first meeting in Denver, Colorado, the AHMA has continued to strive toward creating fellowship and collaboration among practitioners and those they work with–bringing an understanding of how the mind, the body and the spirit all have a part to play in healing.  

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.

 


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 7]


6a00e55255b462883401a73d93dc24970d-300wiHolistic Medicine Gains in the Past 50 Years

While people in Germany and France have been using homeopathic medicine for the past hundred years and considering it normal, the US has taken much longer to return to the roots of natural and holistic medicine. One out of three drugs prescribed in Germany is herbal. In medicine as in many other arenas, California tends to lead the nation in progressive modalities, with the rest of the country following decades later.

Early in my medical career, I had to keep my practice of complementary methods very quiet. It was dangerous to let people know that I was pioneering the creation of the field of Holistic Dermatology. Speaking up about my work at medical meetings in the 1970s, 80s, and into the 90s, I was sharply criticized and threatened by other physicians, who were towing the line of conventional medicine.

But over the past two decades, there has been a very powerful sea change in what patients are demanding in natural skin care and what practitioners are providing in natural skin treatments. Patients want answers that make more sense. Let’s take a look at some signs of this sea change in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 6]

Drugs known as “6a00e55255b462883401a51188ae7d970c-300wiBiologics” were developed because they block the effects of the agents in the body that trigger the inflammation in psoriasis. The problem is that certain people depend on that blocked path to control dangerous infections or cancers. It’s kind of like locking up the only police who look after people whose last names begin with P. Most people have no severe consequences. But for those whose names begin with P…

According to Dr. Maoshing Ni, author of “Secrets of Longevity,” a study shows that the side effects of pharmaceuticals kill 140,000 people in the US and cost the country over $136 billion each year—in fact, the side effects of prescribed drugs are the nation’s fifth leading cause of death. The same study found that herb-related deaths amounted to fewer than 50 per year, according to 10 years of statistics and research. In light of this information, natural skin care and natural treatment of skin conditions starts to look better and better.

More on going holistic in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 5]

6a00e55255b462883401a3fcd8fb03970b-300wiTo continue the discussion on why to go holistic with your skin care, I’d like to share about the dangers of traditional medicine. As I’ve discussed in the previous parts of this series, traditional western dermatology can be a vital tool for treating certain skin conditions. My training as a board-certified dermatologist was invaluable for understanding the necessity of “brute force”.

But when a cutting-edge “wonder” drugs is pulled off the market because it causes a new form of viral brain degeneration, it is not surprising that people now pause before taking the latest medications for their skin problems.

That drug was Raptiva, a biologic (a drug made by genetic engineering to inhibit a specific portion of the immune response). Raptiva was recently withdrawn from the market because of that rare side effect, along with an increased incidence of lymphoma and tuberculosis. This woder drug wasn’t so wonderful.

When confronted with this reality, natural skin care and natural treatment of skin conditions starts to look better and better. More on going holistic in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 4]

6a00e55255b462883401a51188ac2b970c-200wiWhen working with traditional western medicine, one problem is that many people are beginning to doubt what they are being told by industry, medicine, and the government agencies that approve the drugs we take.

People are suffering serious side effects and even dying from approved drugs. When we see FDA regulators leave the agency and go right into cushy jobs within the pharmaceutical industry they were just regulating, it makes us wonder if the fox is watching the chicken coop.

The same kind of problem happens throughout government and industry, which has fostered mistrust about the whole process of government regulation and approval. Natural skin care has the benefit of being regulatd by… your own body. More on this in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 3]


6a00e55255b462883401a73d93d4bf970d-300wiHaving practiced Holistic Dermatology for over 30 years now,
I see the first problem that we are recognizing is that each person with a given skin condition, has his or her own individual circumstance that contributes to developing that disorder. Each person has their own colorful pallette of environmental factors, genetic triggers, and more that help or harm them.

In traditional medicine, the concept of “disease” made it much more possible to classify and treat disorders. But the idea of every person with the same disease needing to be treated in exactly the same way breaks down in face of knowledge of either human genetic individuality or various folk healing systems.

So does the insurance payment system, based on suppressive therapy to make symptoms “go away”. It is almost impossible for a well-trained professional to take the time to get a detailed history and transmit all the new information to change a patient’s diet and lifestyle within the timeframe paid for under insurance. This system is unable to address each patient’s unique issues individually. Natural skin care focuses on more than making the symptoms “go away” temporarily. More on natural skin care the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 2]

6a00e55255b462883401a73d93d279970d-300wiIn traditional medicine, when suppressive pharmaceuticals are prescribed, they rarely address the conditions that lead to chronic disease in the first place, like environmental exposure to allergens. And unfortunately there is a chance that the side effects of pharmaceuticals will dangerously outweigh the benefits they confer.

Topical steroids can stop an itch that prevents sleep or leads to scratching and infection, but chronic use of topical steroids can lead to infection, thin the skin permanently, and may even suppress the adrenal glands.

Oral steroids and more potent immunosuppressives can stop a dangerous allergic or inflammatory reaction that threatens life or function. Unfortunately, they can also paralyze the immune system, so that dangerous infections like tuberculosis can take hold, or tumors like lymphoma can start to grow.

Many patients who are not helped by current therapeutic paradigms are beginning to question what they are being told by the medical and pharmaceutical establishment, by insurance companies, and by the government agencies that oversee our collective health care. More in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Going holistic! Why go for natural skin care? [part 1]


6a00e55255b462883401a3fcd5fbe5970b-250wiWhy Go Holistic with Your Skin?

Why not just go to your local dermatologist and get the latest conventional treatments for your skin disorder? Of course, these treatments are scientifically approved and paid for by your insurance. They often involve the latest and most sophisticated chemical drugs, which have gone through millions of dollars worth of testing and have been approved by the FDA after a rigorous process. And, it might not be a bad idea to get the expertise in skin diagnosis from your local doctor.

Perhaps you have an acute problem that clears completely with treatment. That’s a good thing.

But some people who respond initially to conventional treatments find that their condition returns again and again and that they need stronger medication each time to suppress and control it. Other people don’t improve at all. Sometimes a skin rash will clear completely through conventional treatment, but it serves only to drive the actual issue deeper underground. More on natual skin care and treatment in the next post.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


What is natural skin care? [Part 8]

When I practice Holistic Dermatology, or natural skin care, I look for the triggers of what originally caused the skin condition. When likely triggers for skin conditions emerge, I put my effort into reversing them as safely and naturally as possible, preferably with diet and supplements. (However, I will use drugs if I feel they are required for a particular situation.) This is one way I differ from an alternative practitioner.

So my patient history is far more probing than most of my colleagues’. This is not meant as a value judgment. Many people’s skin problems are successfully treated by dermatologists who are capable of treating a lot of people in a day, which is how most dermatologists practice. Nearly all of them would run broke and have to shut down, if they spent the time with each patient that I do, under the current insurance payment system. It’s just that some patients with chronic problems really do need the time to discover the cause.

If you find yourself with a more complex skin problem than you feel can be treated by your traditional dermatologist, or if you have a chronic skin condition that your doctor hasn’t been able to  treat… Or, if you simply prefer to use the most natural course of action and do the least harm to your body as you care for it, contact me about a visit.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.