If You’re Over Thirty- This Is The Best Treatment You Can Use For Your Sciatica, Back Pain and Herniated Discs!

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on April 4, 2009 under Back pain, Chiropractic, Research Articles | 3 Comments to Read

Finally, there’s a treatment to conquer back and leg pain without dangerous medications or painful surgery.
My name is Dr. Jonathan Walker D.C., clinic director of Ocala Integrative Medicine. I work with Dr. Anthony Sancetta D.O. to help find pain relief solutions for countless patients. I understand what it feels like to live in pain, because I see it every day.
I’ve seen hundreds of people with disc herniations and sciatica leave the office pain free.

When cushions in your back joints, called discs, get injured or wear out, they begin to degenerate and cause pain. Bulging and herniations begin to form, pressing on the nerve roots.

The most common invasive treatment for disc herniations is surgery. Even with health insurance the patient is left with their own portion of the bill, in excess of $10,000-$15,000, and sometimes more.

In addition, the recovery time and missed work can be anywhere from 3 to 6 months, not to mention the obvious severe risks associated with all surgeries.

Before You Go Under The Knife And Opt For Spinal Surgery…

 You should seriously consider a less invasive approach called spinal decompression. 

Non-surgical spinal decompression is a new technology that has been proven to help disc herniations. It creates a vacuum effect on the disc, which pulls the disc back into its normal position and brings in a fresh blood supply to promote healing.

The conditions this amazing treatment has proven successful are:

  • Herniated and/or bulging discs
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Back pain
  • Sciatica
  • A relapse or failure following certain surgeries
  • Lumbar Facet syndromes

 Proof This Treatment Works

While non-surgical spinal decompression is a rather new treatment, there’s plenty of research to back up its claims. Here’s just a handful of scientific studies…

“We thus submit that decompression therapy should be considered first, before the patient undergoes a surgical procedure which permanently alters the anatomy and function of the affected lumbar spine segment.” – Journal Of Neuroscience Research

86% of the 219 patients who completed the therapy reported immediate resolution of symptoms” –  Orthopedic Technology Review

“vertebral axial [spinal] decompression was successful in 71% of the 778 cases” – Journal of Neurological Research

“good to excellent” relief in 86% patients with Herniated discs” –  The American Journal of Pain Management

“decompression therapy reported a 76.5% with complete remission and 19.6% with partial remission of pain and disability” – Rio Grande Hospital, Department of Neurosurgery

 Another study presented at the American Academy of Pain Management in 2007 showed…

 “Patients reported a mean 88.9% improvement in back pain and better function…No patient required any invasive therapies (e.g. epidural injections, surgery).”

As you can see, spinal decompression has a high success rate . What this means for you is that in just a matter of weeks, you could be back on the golf course, enjoying your love life, or traveling again.

Could This Be Your Sciatica And Back Pain Solution

It’s time for you to find out if spinal decompression will be your sciatic pain solution.

For 10 days only, $47* will get you all the services I normally charge new patients $257 for!

What does this offer include?  Everything.  Here’s what you’ll get…

  • An in-depth consultation about your health and well-being where I will listen…really listen…to the details of your case.
  • A complete neuromuscular examination.
  • A full set of specialized x-rays to determine if a spinal problem is contributing to your pain or symptoms… (NOTE: These would normally cost you at least $100).
  • A thorough analysis of your exam and x-ray findings so we can start mapping out your plan to being pain free.
  • You’ll get to see everything first hand. I’ll answer all your questions about spinal decompression. I’ll let you know if this amazing treatment will be your back pain solution, like it has been for so many other patients.

 Call today…phone 352-732-5590!

The normal price for this type of evaluation, including x-rays, is $250 so you’re saving a considerable amount by taking me up on this offer.

Call today and we can get you scheduled for your consultation, exam and x-rays as soon as there’s an opening.

Our office is located just east of the downtown square on Silver Springs Blvd, just a few minutes from you. When you call, tell the receptionist you’d like to come in for the Spinal Decompression Evaluation so she get you on the schedule and make sure you receive  proper credit for this special offer.



*Not applicable to Medicaid, Medicare or Medicare replacement policies. BUT HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS! An evaluation with Dr. Sancetta is covered by Medicare, and can help determine if you’re a candidate for treatment! The patient and any other person responsible for payment has the right to refuse to pay, cancel payment or be reimbursed for payment for any other service, examination or treatment which is performed as a result of and within 72 hours of responding to the advertisement for the free, discounted or reduced fee services, examination or treatment.













What’s Different About This Ocala Chiropractor?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on March 29, 2009 under Uncategorized | Be the First to Comment

Have you been searching for a chiropractor in Ocala? Having a hard time telling the difference from one to the next? I don’t blame you! A quick scan of the yellow pages shows dozens of qualified chiropractors who all treat back pain, neck pain, sciatica, headaches, disc injuries, auto injuries, and a host of other conditions.

Some might have spinal decompression, others might offer acupuncture, but at the end of the day, there’s not a whole lot of difference. Marketing guru Seth Godin wrote a must-read business book called “The Purple Cow”. Godin writes that driving through the countryside can be an exciting experience for a city dweller. The first cow you see reminds you that you’re no longer in the concrete jungle with it’s noise and chaos. However, as the trip goes on each cow becomes less and less interesting, and by the end of the journey you don’t even notice them as you whiz by.

But a purple cow? That’s an animal you’d never forget. Once you saw a purple cow you’d watch every other cow intently searching for the rare purple one.

What does any of this have to do with choosing a chiropractor? Seth Godin believes every business should have a purple cow, or at least one feature that makes it unique and exciting.

At Ocala Chiropractic Center, we are proud to introduce Dr. Anthony Sancetta, our resident purple cow! Dr. Sancetta is a medical physician, more specifically a D.O., who brings an entirely new skillset to the practice. Dr. Sancetta specializes in the field of natural medicine, working to help our patients balance their body chemistry and hormones. He’s also able to assist in the treatment of patients with severe pain, such as those who have been in auto accidents, with medication and trigger point injections.

If you’re looking for a truly unique experience, then Ocala Chiropractic Center is for you. We are the only clinic in Marion County with a chiropractor and medical physician working together. Let us find the solution to your health problems with our purple cow!

Is Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Right For You?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on March 4, 2009 under Hormone Replacement Therapy | Read the First Comment

Why Hormone replacement?
For years Doctors have been treating women for menopause by giving them estrogen and progesterone then why do we neglect the other crucial hormones such as Natural thyroid hormone, DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone), Melatonin, Human Growth Hormone (HGH)?At Ocala Integrative Medicine, we realize the value of natural hormone replacement therapy. In addition to alleviating the symptoms of menopause and reducing risk of osteoporosis, hormone replacement can also aid in the anti-aging process, improve your memory and mood, and create an overall sense of well-being.We specialize in Bioidentical hormone replacement hormone therapy. After a thorough examination and the necessary lab tests, Dr. Tony Sancetta will prescribe for you the proper natural hormones that will have you looking and feeling better than you have in years.
What are bioidentical hormones?
Bioidentical hormones are exactly the same hormones, molecule by molecule that your body produces. They are modified in a lab derived mostly from plant sources but are still considered natural to your body because they are identical. Body does not consider then a foreign substance and so does not cause any adverse reactions.Synthetic hormones are also made in a lab, but most importantly are not identical to your body. Bioidentical hormones are superior to types of synthetic hormones commonly prescribed.
Why do I need to test for hormone levels?
Hormones are powerful substances that control multiple functions through out the body. Hormone levels should be sufficient and balanced. Too little or too much of them is not conducive to long-term emotional, mental and bodily health. Simple saliva test can accurately measure your hormone levels- no blood work required!
What are “normal’ hormone levels?
Hormoen levels from woman to woman can vary from 200-1500%! Just as you cannot balance your bank account without numbers on your bank statements, hormones testing provide both a basis for treatment and proximity to your goal. One can then customize natural hormone dosing to meet individual needs. In other words Optimize hormone levels for minimum dose to relieve symptoms and avoid overdosing.We may choose to prescribe various different hormones like estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, thyroid, Cortisol, DHEA, Melatonin, or growth hormone, depending on what your symptoms are and which hormone(s) your body needs. This is done on a gradient scale so as to let the body adjust itself naturally.
What is menopause?
Literally, menopause means the cessation of the monthly menstrual cycle and signals the end of a woman’s natural childbearing years. Menopause is neither a disease nor an illness; it is a natural and usually gradual change in glandular function, when major hormonal shifts occur as a result of ovaries not producing estrogen and progesterone. On average, this occurs at age 52, but can occur much earlier or later.
What is perimenopause?
As a woman approaches menopause, her hormone production may fluctuate wildly, causing hot flashes, moodiness, depression, loss of libido, sleep problems, and more. Some women experience symptoms early – in some cases 10-15 years before clinical menopause.Fluctuating levels of hormones can cause one or more of the following:

Hot flashes Fatigue
Night sweats Irregular Periods
Insomnia Breast tenderness
Memory loss Weight Gain
Mood swings Anxiety
Low sex drive Increased skin wrinkling
What can be done?
The right balance of hormones is important to long-term emotional, mental and bodily health.We recommend a natural hormone replacement therapy (often called BHRT, Bioidentical HRT) that can provide relief from menopause symptoms, and may also help minimize the risks of cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis, and some types of cancer. It also Increases sense of well being by removing underlying hormone deficit and imbalances.We treat and correct symptoms using natural hormones with testing before and after treatment.
But I already take hormones? Or I tried hormones already and they didn’t work?
For last 50 or so years women in this country have been prescribed Premarin and Provera. Premarin is a synthetic form of estrogen and is made from the urine of pregnant mares. Provera is synthetic progesterone and does not have the same functions as natural progesterone. Most women get the same dose of medication and usually do not have their hormone levels checked.At Angel Longevity Medical Center, we take a different approach. We carefully measure your entire hormone panel, not just female hormones such as estrogen, so that we can tailor a replacement program specifically for you. In this way, we bring all of your hormones into balance, allowing you to feel years younger. We use only bioidentical hormones. Hormones are available from some large pharmaceutical companies in predetermined doses, but they are also available through compounding pharmacies in a more custom hormone dose formulation.
What are the benefits of estrogen therapy?
Estrogens promote youthful cell growth in organs of the body.The benefits of estrogens include:

  • Enhanced skin smoothness, firmness and elasticity
  • Enhanced moistness of mucus membranes
  • Enhanced muscle tone
  • Enhanced sex drive
  • Reduced risk of osteoporosis
  • Reduced risk of colon cancer
  • Improved memory and neurological function
  • Greater feeling of well being.
Are you estrogen dominant? 

The increasingly popular term Estrogen dominant does not mean you have too much estrogen but that you have too little progesterone in relation to your estrogen even if the estrogen level is actually also low. There is an ideal ration between the two (Pg/E2). You can actually have normal or even low levels of estrogen, but when you have diminished levels of progesterone levels, estrogen dominance results. Because estrogen is a proliferative (cell growing) hormone, too much of it without progesterone to balance it will cause problems such as

Fibrocystic disease Water Retention
Heavy/Irregular periods Low Thyroid Symptoms
Migraines Belly weight gain
Bone/mineral loss Tearfulness

Are there any other hormones I should take?
Many women are also deficient in testosterone. While testosterone is often considered a male hormone, it is a critical hormone in women as well. Replacement therapy with natural testosterone can increase sexual desire and improve feelings of emotional well-being.Besides bioidentical hormones we also provide nutritional supplements tailored for you, recommendation for life style changes, whole foods, diet, exercise and relaxation and enjoyment of life.

Call Ocala Integrative Medicine today at 352-732-5590 to schedule a consultation and find out if bioidentical hormone replacement could be right for you!

Foot pain keeping you grounded?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on February 17, 2009 under Foot Pain, Orthotics | Read the First Comment

On almost a daily basis we have patients complaining of foot, ankle, and knee pain. Most people do not realize that there are simple, non-invasive treatment options for foot pain. At Ocala Chiropractic Center we utilize a cutting-edge technology called the Orthotic Group Gait Scan. Our GaitScan™ System is a revolutionary diagnostic tool for assessing our patient’s biomechanics. GaitScan™ has an industry high 4096 sensors and scans at an industry high 300Hz (scans per second).  These measurements provide us with a sophisticated explanation of foot mechanics and assists us with orthotic and/or shoe solutions.

First of all, it’s important to understand exactly what an orthotic is. Orthotics are simply supportive inserts that fit in the sole of your shoes. They can range from a $5 pair of Dr. Scholls purchased at the drugstore to a custom fitted pair prescribed by a physician.

Lack of proper care, ill-fitting shoes and general foot neglect are responsible for the majority of foot problems. Custom orthotics can be made to help support the areas of the feet that are not properly functioning. It’s important to understand your feet have direct impact on the rest of your body and support you with each step.  A small abnormality in foot function can have a large impact on joints higher up in the body, causing pain and discomfort. 

When you are running, the pressure on your feet can be three or four times your body weight. Even walking can produce more pressure than the sum of your body weight. The American Podiatric Medical Association says that the average person takes 8,000 to 10,000 steps a day. That adds up to about 115,000 miles in a lifetime or more than four times the circumference of the globe. That is a lot of walking with ill-fitting shoes or painful feet!!

In some cases foot ailments can be an early signal of more serious medical problems like arthritis or diabetes. Women have four times as many foot problems as men because they have a long history of wearing high heels and/or pointy toe shoes.

Orthotics can be cast to fit virtually any shoe, and in many cases are covered by your health insurance if medically necessary. The Orthotic Group brand orthotics we use at Ocala Chiropractic Center have a lifetime guarantee! A wide variety of custom shoes are also available with orthotics built right into them!

Remember if you are experiencing pain or discomfort in your ankles, knees or hip joints ….the direct cause may be the function of your feet or ill-fitting shoes. Don’t spend another day in pain- call us at 352-732-5590 to see if you can put an end to your foot pain!

Has a whiplash injury left you in pain?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on January 31, 2009 under Back pain, Chiropractic, Neck pain, Research Articles, Whiplash | 9 Comments to Read

The syndrome of whiplash was first described in litigation in 1928. Since that time whiplash has had an unsavory reputation. Many researchers and doctors avoided involvement with whiplash injuries and opinions varied.

Over time, it became clear that complaints of patients sustaining this type of injury were, in fact, fairly consistent. The most common complaint, neck pain, could easily be understood, but other symptoms, such as ringing in the ears, dizziness, blurred vision, headaches, numbness, and back pain, were not so easily explained clinically.

According to research statistics, nearly one-third of all motor vehicle accidents are rear-end collisions. Newton’s first law of motion states that “an object continues either at rest or in a state of motion in a straight line, unless it is acted upon by an external force”. When a vehicle stopped at a red light is hit, the car is moved forward by the external force of the impacting vehicle. This force pushes the seat and driver forward. The neck, which is not in contact with the seat, remains stationary, causing hyperextension of the neck. When the front vehicle stops, the driver is thrown forward.

Although the shoulder harness prevents the driver from hitting the steering wheel or windshield, it forces the head to fly forward in a twisting motion, causing hyper flexion of the neck. Most injuries are a result of hyperextension, when the neck can exceed the maximum physiologic extension of 70 degrees by as much as 120 degrees, stretching some muscles as much as 30%.

The forces exerted on the head and neck with rear-end collisions can be quite high. For example, one G is the force exerted by the earth’s gravity which causes an object to fall at 32 feet per second. Pilots begin to pass out at 6 Gs, and at 8 Gs you are pinned to your seat. If a 150-pound person is subjected to 10 Gs, this is a force of 1,500 pounds. In crash testing, with impacts below 10 mph, the head can be subjected to 10 to 15 Gs for 100 milliseconds.

If the average head weighs 12 pounds, then it becomes a weight of 120-180 pounds. Talk about a headache!

Research involved with the actual injuries sustained by victims of whiplash show tearing of muscles, ligaments, vertebral disc derangement, tears in the ligamentous capsules surrounding the joints, damage to the sympathetic nervous system and peripheral nervous system, occult fractures, mild concussions, and micro-hemorrhages of the brain tissue and spinal cord, as well as stress disorders.

Many of these injuries are imperceptible on MRIs, CT scans, and x-rays. The symptoms range from muscle pain, headaches, jaw pain, vertigo, nausea, visual problems, forgetfulness, and unexplained numbness in the arms and legs, etc.

Symptoms may not present themselves for hours, days, months, or even years after the accident. Scientific evidence supports these characteristic of whiplash injuries. Other studies show that neck pain presents in 65% of patients within 6 hours of the accident, 28% within 24 hours, and 7% within 72 hours, though those people suffering symptoms immediately after the accident are more likely to continue to show symptoms more than 2 years following the initial injury.

People who have pre-existing conditions such as arthritis, and women due to their smaller frame and less muscle density than men, are more likely to be injured, though the speed and size of the vehicles involved, as well as the position of the seat and other factors play a significant role in determining the severity of an injury. Government reports revealed over one million injuries from rear-end collisions in 1990, and estimates project that over 25 years the prevalence of chronic pain from whiplash is more than 9% of the total U.S. population.
To lessen your risk of serious injury, wear your seatbelt, sit up in your seat with your seat in the upright position, and stop thinking of your head restraint as a headrest. The majority of people have their head restraint improperly positioned. Correctly adjusted, your restraint should be about even with eye level, and with no more than a two-inch gap between the restraint and your head.

If you are in an accident, even what appears to be a minor one, after life-threatening injuries have been ruled out, follow-up with a physician who specializes in soft-tissue trauma.

Remember, prevention is always best… drive safely, and watch out for the car behind you.

Muscle Cancer Away!

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on January 16, 2009 under Nutrition, Research Articles | 3 Comments to Read

The benefits of strength training are well-documented and extensive. From increasing bone density to improving cholesterol, resistance training should be included in any exercise routine. Recent research is showing that people with more lean muscle mass may be at an advantage when it comes to fighting cancer.

A study in the British medical journal Lancet found that cancer patients with increased levels of lean muscle mass lived on average 10 months longer than those with lower muscle mass. While other studies have shown that people who exercise have lower levels of cancer, it is unclear whether lifting weights prior to or after the cancer diagnosis has the greatest effect.

The researchers still are not sure exactly what causes lean mass to have a protective effect. My take would be this- lean muscle mass increases our metabolism, burning fat. Stored fat in the body produces excess estrogen, which has been linked to certain cancers (this is one of the reasons Hormone Replacement Therapy in post-menopausal women increases the risk of cancer). So by reducing fat mass the progression of cancer is slowed.

We also know that fat tissue causes the release of a variety of chemicals called cytokines. These chemicals chronically increase inflammation in the body. It has been well demonstrated that inflammation is the root cause of many types of cancer, as well as cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, and obesity. People with more lean muscle mass have lower levels of inflammation, and therefore are better prepared to stave off diseases such as cancer.

So get started today! Don’t wait until it’s too late to begin anti-inflammatory (and anti-cancer) habits. Exercise regularly with weights, eat an anti-inflammatory diet (lots of fruits, vegetables, healthy fats and protein), and supplement your diet with quality nutritional products.

If you want the support of physicians trained in natural and preventative medicine, contact our office today. Dr. Walker and Dr. Sancetta can help develop a plan of action for you to achieve your goals!

Could Your Vitamins Be Causing Disease?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on January 7, 2009 under Nutrition, Research Articles | 2 Comments to Read

Some interesting research is being brought to the forefront in the synthetic vs. whole food supplement debate. The more time I spend studying, the more intuitive sense it makes to me that natural whole food supplements are superior to their synthetic counterparts. It is impossible to replicate in a lab the nutrients the healthy foods our bodies are designed to function on.

All of the nutrients in whole food supplements, like the Optimal Health Systems line we carry in the practice, are derived from natural sources. Also, the minerals in the supplements we use are bound with amino acids to significantly increase absorption.

These studies illustrate not only the possible superiority of whole food supplements, but also the potential dangers of synthetic vitamins.

Synthetic Vitamin C Supplements May Lead to Heart Disease

Researchers from the Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research found that “regular intake of [synthetic] vitamin C pills may quicken the thickening of artery walls, a condition known as atherosclerosis”. Of the 573 men and women studied, those that had consumed at least 500 milligrams of ascorbic acid Vitamin C supplements a day, developed an inner artery wall layer 2.5 times thicker than that of people who did not take the synthetic supplements. However, the researchers found “no evidence that vitamin C from food caused heightened atherosclerosis progression. According to researcher James H. Dwyer, “When you take in vitamins from food, you take them in with a large number of other components of that food. It is plausible that the protective effective of a diet occurs because of the interaction of many components of those foods.”

Rado, Alicia. “Too much of a good thing? Large doses of vitamin C linked to atherosclerosis”. HSC Weekly, Feb 25, 2000; Vol 6, No 7.

Synthetic Vitamin E Harmful

According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the synthetic form of vitamin E (alpha-tochopherol) does an incomplete job of neutralizing certain compounds and can actually block beneficial natural nutrients in the body. Stephan Christen, lead author of the study, said consuming over 100 international units of alpha-tocopherol may be harmful. Christen said he hopes vitamin/pill companies will soon begin adding gamma-tocopherol to their formulas so consumers can receive the full benefits from vitamin E.

Recer, Paul. “Vitamin E pills may pose risk.” The Arizona Republic, April 1, 1997.

Synthetic Vitamin C May Contribute to DNA Damage

According to an article published in the journal Science, researchers found that “the [synthetic] vitamin C pills taken by millions of health-conscious Americans may actually help produce toxins that can damage their DNA, a step toward forming cancer cells”. Ian A. Blair, the study’s lead author, said they found that synthetic “vitamin C was highly efficient in converting lipid hydroperoxide [a compound produced in the body from fat in the diet] into gene-damaging toxins.”

Recer, Paul. “Lab Study Finds Vitamin C Dangers.” The Washington Post, June 14, 2001.

Beta-Carotene Provides No Benefit in Cancer Prevention

“Former blue asbestos workers known to be at high risk of asbestos-related diseases, particularly malignant mesothelioma and lung cancer, were enrolled in a chemo-prevention program using vitamin A. [The goal of the study was] to compare rates of disease and death in subjects randomly assigned to [synthetic] beta-carotene or retinol.” Results of the five-year study “confirm other findings of a lack of any benefit from administration of large doses of synthetic beta-carotene.”

de Klerk NH et al. Vitamin A and cancer prevention II: comparison of the effects of retinol and beta-carotene. Int J Cancer 1998 Jan 30; 75(3):362-7.

Harvard Doctor Practices What He Preaches

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on December 10, 2008 under Rehabilitation | Be the First to Comment

In a world where it is common for a cigarette puffing, twinkie munching doctor to tell a patient to stop smoking and lose weight, Harvard professor Dr. Harvey Simon is a breath of fresh air. For years Dr. Simon has recommended exercise to his patients. What many of them probably don’t know, however, is how seriously he takes these instructions for himself. He was recently profiled in the New York TImes for having run every day for the last 30 YEARS!

The last day Dr. Simon missed a run was October 30, 1978. His daughter, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal writes:

When he travels overseas, my dad, who is 66, plans layovers so he can get in a couple miles around the concourse, lest he miss a day to the time-zone shift. During blizzards, he wraps his feet in plastic bags, pulls galoshes over his sneakers and screws in cleats for traction. Then he waits for a snowplow to pass his front door, so he can follow in the freshly cleared path.

This level of intensity is far beyond what is necessary or even healthy for the average person. It’s certainly a lot more running than I do! The average person would probably not be doing their spine a favor by running 10 miles a day, so don’t take Dr. Simon’s exercise routine as a template to follow. Dr. Simons himself advises patients to engage in moderate exercise, counting things like housework and gardening as acceptable forms.

Whatever the motivation, more physicians would do themselves well to practice what they preach!


What does osteoporosis have to do with a good night’s sleep?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on December 6, 2008 under Uncategorized | Be the First to Comment

More than you may think, according to researchers at Columbia University Medical Center in New York. Seratonin, the neurotransmitter that is produced in the body to regulate mood, appetite and sleep has been linked to bone growth. Drugs such as Prozac, Paxil, and Zoloft regulate seratonin to act as mood stabilizers.

95% of seratonin production occurs in the gut where until recently, it was thought to act primarily on digestion. However, a new study published in the November 28 issue of the journal Cell found seratonin actually signals cells in the skeleton to slow the production of new bone. Osteoporosis or osteopenia occur when new bone is not being produced as fast as the existing bone is being absorbed.

This study shows how excessive seratonin could inhibit the growth of new bone tissue. The types of osteoporosis linked to seratonin production in this study are both very rare and severe. However, this study opens up an entirely new area of research in the prevention of more common forms of osteoporosis.

So what does osteoporosis have to do with a good night’s sleep? The supplements that many people take to sleep better, such as 5-HTP or tryptophan may be affecting the health of your bones. Consult with your physician to make sure that you are not inadvertantly increasing the progression of osteoporosis with these common supplements.

Stop pain by….eating?

Posted by Dr. Jonathan Walker on November 19, 2008 under Back pain, Nutrition | Read the First Comment

You read that correctly. As you can probably imagine, WHAT you eat matters, but the idea is still pretty powerful. When you hear the phrase “You are what you eat”, do you actually think about what this means? As we’ll discuss today, this is very literally true, and has some incredible applications.

If you think back to eighth grade biology, you remember the pictures of a human cell. Big squishy round thing in the middle (nucleus), a covering that looks like it’s made of Skittles (cell membrane) and with a bunch of funny looking stuff floating around inside (endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, etc). It’s a whole lot more complicated than this, but that’s not the point. Each part of that cell is composed of fats and proteins that come from the food we eat.

The part of the cell that is especially important for our topic today is the cell membrane (the Skittle covering). The membrane is made of the fats that you eat, primarily omega-3 and omega-6 fats. If you’ve heard any thing about eating salmon or taking fish oil to increase he omega-3s in your diet, then you already know how healthy these essential fats are. Have you ever considered why?

                                                 The cell membrane (made omega-6s and omega-3s) is responsible for regulating inflammation in the body. When you think of inflammation you probably think of a sprained ankle or when you hit your thumb with a hammer. This is acute inflammation, and it’s normal and healthy. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, is when your body is always producing low levels of pro-inflammatory chemicals. This chronic inflammation occurs when the cell membranes have too many omega-6s and not enough omega-3s. When the body is always inflammed this leads to problems such as heart disease, arthritis, chronic pain, even cancer.

This is why supplementing wiith omega-3s (fish oil, flaxseed oil) and eating foods rich in omega-3s helps to fight inflammation. Even more important is limiting the amount of omega-6 fats in your diet. These are found primarily in grains, vegetable oils, and processed foods. Studies have shown that a diet rich in omega-3s helps to prevent conditions ranging from heart disease to Alzheimers. In Europe, fish oil is prescribed to help patients recovering from a heart attack or stroke. In my practice, I’ve found patients who are supplementing with omega-3s have less pain and recover faster. If you have questions on what type of fish oil is best or how much is necessary for you, our staff can help you make good decisions.

So next time you’re about to eat another meal of processed, pro-inflammatory, omega-6 laden food, decide if you want to be eating to cause pain, or if you want to choose health! If back or neck pain is keeping you from doing the things you love, be aware that the inflammation in your body might be related to the inflammation from your plate!