Manual Therapies for Your Diabetic Neuropathy

Your doctor has probably explained that diabetic neuropathy is peripheral neuropathy specific to patients who have diabetes, and that diabetic neuropathy is caused by a lack of blood flow to the nerves and elevated and uncontrolled blood sugar levels.

You’re probably taking painkillers, closely monitoring your blood sugar (hopefully), and being more careful about your diet (as you should).

So how are your diabetic neuropathy symptoms now?

If they’re not improving, you might want to add something else to your treatment plan…

Chiropractic and Manual Physical Therapy Treatments for Diabetic Neuropathy

Chiropractic care for diabetic neuropathy patients usually concentrates on correcting misalignments in the spine which can wreak havoc on your nervous system and your internal organs – including the pancreas, a direct link to diabetes.

If the other pieces of your treatment puzzle are not working as quickly as you had hoped, and you’re doing everything else your doctor tells you to do, contact your local NeuropathyDR® specialist.  Our team has an exclusive treatment protocol with proven results for diabetic neuropathy patients.  An integral part of that treatment protocol is chiropractic adjustment to correct problems with your spinal alignment.

Pain Reduction and Nerve Repair

The next step in your treatment for diabetic neuropathy is taking steps to reduce your symptoms and help the nerves repair themselves.  This can be done through a combination of topical pain medications, manual manipulation of the bones and joints to properly align the nervous system, and nerve stimulation.

Proper alignment of the bones and muscles and nerve stimulation are all important aspects of successful treatment of diabetic neuropathy.

Personal Care Tips For The Diabetic Neuropathy Patient

Diabetes is the fifth deadliest disease in the United States and the number of people diagnosed with diabetes is growing at an alarming rate. One of the things that makes diabetes so deadly is the risk for infection and resulting amputation.  Diabetic neuropathy is a serious contributing factor in the risk for amputation.

While you’re undergoing treatment for diabetic neuropathy and having chiropractic adjustments, pay particular attention to your feet, hands, arms and leg.  Contact your healthcare provider immediately if you notice any blisters, sores, torn skin, or inflammation.   The combination of your diabetes and your diabetic neuropathy can lead to very serious infections that are slow or impossible to heal.   This can lead to dire complications that can be avoided if you receive the proper medical treatment early.

Do a Visual Inspection and Don’t Rely on Soreness or Pain. 

Diabetic neuropathy impairs your ability to feel pain in your extremities and you may not notice the problem until it’s too late for successful treatment.

If you have any of the issues we’ve discussed, contact your healthcare provider and take full advantage of their expertise in the treatment of peripheral neuropathies, including diabetic neuropathy, and their ability to provide chiropractic care to correct misalignment in your spine.

The positive effects of chiropractic adjustment on diabetic neuropathy are being affirmed by a growing number of case studies.  Give it serious consideration in treating your diabetic neuropathy.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

Disuse Syndrome

In our last post, we discussed how exercise can help control the symptoms of your underlying illness (whatever caused your autonomic neuropathy). Today we’re going to discuss the effects of not exercising, which are called disuse syndrome.

Use Vs. Disuse

When you’re thinking about starting an exercise program and you’re thinking about how dangerous it can be, you also need to consider the effects of not starting an exercise program.

The effects of not exercising are called disuse syndrome.  If your level of activity seriously out of sync with your level of inactivity, you can develop:

• Decreased physical work capacity

• Muscle atrophy

• Negative nitrogen and protein balance

• Cardiovascular deconditioning

• Pulmonary restrictions

• Depression

The effects of any of these symptoms of disuse syndrome in combination with your autonomic neuropathy symptoms can make a bad situation even worse.

The very nature of your autonomic neuropathy can affect the systems that are most sensitive to the effects of exercise.  Any exercise program you begin should be designed and monitored by a medical professional well versed in the effects of autonomic neuropathy, like your NeuropathyDR® clinician.

Autonomic neuropathy can have a serious effect on the very systems in the body that are directly affected by exercise.  Make sure you talk to your healthcare provider before you start an exercise program and let them monitor your progress.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

Exercising Caution With Autonomic Neuropathy

If you’ve been diagnosed with autonomic neuropathy, you know you’re at risk for some serious medical issues. Autonomic neuropathy (i.e., nerve damage to the autonomic nervous system) can affect every system in the body, especially:

• Cardiovascular – your heart, blood pressure and circulation

• Respiratory

• Gastrointestinal – your digestion, ability to ability to empty your bowels

• Genitourinary – erectile dysfunction and loss of bladder control

• While you’re dealing with some or all of these issues, exercise may not be on your radar.

But it should be.

Exercise can help control the symptoms of your underlying illness (whatever caused your autonomic neuropathy) and by doing that, you can help lessen the symptoms of your autonomic neuropathy.

But a word of caution is in order here.

The very nature of your autonomic neuropathy can affect the systems that are most sensitive to the effects of exercise.  Any exercise program you begin should be designed and monitored by a medical professional well versed in the effects of autonomic neuropathy, like your NeuropathyDR® clinician.

Use Vs. Disuse

When you’re thinking about starting an exercise program and you’re thinking about how dangerous it can be, you also need to consider the effects of not starting an exercise program.  The effects of not exercising are called “disuse syndrome”. We’ll discuss more about “disuse syndrome” in our next post.

What You Need To Think About Before You Start Exercising

Think about what happens to your body when you exercise. Your heart rate increases, your breathing becomes labored, you sweat.

Every single one of those results is controlled by the autonomic nervous system.  Autonomic neuropathy can seriously impact how your body responds to the stimulus of exercise.  And your body may not react as it should.

• Heart rate – If your autonomic neuropathy affects your cardiovascular system, you need to make sure that your exercise program is designed and monitored by your NeuropathyDR® clinician. Your autonomic neuropathy can lead to abnormal heart rate, inability to properly regulate blood pressure and redistribution of blood flow.  Your cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy may cause you to have a higher resting rate and lower maximal heart rates during exercise.

• Blood pressure – Blood pressure response with posture change and during exercise is abnormal in patients with cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy.  Postural hypotension, defined as a drop in blood pressure may be seen.  This can mean that the blood pressure doesn’t react normally during exercise.  Symptoms are similar to hypoglycemia and may be mistaken for a drop in blood glucose even though it’s actually a drop in blood pressure.  Patients should be alerted to the potential confusion in these symptoms and instructed to check blood glucose before treating for hypoglycemia.

• Sweating and Disruption of Blood Flow – Autonomic neuropathy may reduce or even eliminate your ability to sweat.  The loss of sweating, especially in your feet, can cause dry, brittle skin on the feet and you can develop skin ulcers.  It can also make it more difficult for your body to respond to cold and heat. You need to make sure that you’re taking proper care of your feet before and during any exercise program.  Make sure your shoes fit properly and examine your feet regularly to make sure you don’t have any sores, cracks or ulcers.

Autonomic neuropathy can have a serious effect on the very systems in the body that are directly affected by exercise.  Make sure you talk to your local NeuropathyDR® clinician before you start an exercise program and let them monitor your progress.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

What Can Cause Peripheral Neuropathy?

The causes of peripheral neuropathy are in many cases unfortunately unknown. In fact, the most common cause of neuropathy in this day and age may actually be what’s called idiopathic, meaning of unknown certainty. It’s no longer just diabetes.

In our modern world, we are subjected and exposed to many environmental toxins, including heavy metals. We also are seeing patients surviving cancer and living much longer. Unfortunately, one of the undesired complications of chemotherapy is the development of peripheral neuropathy.

We are also seeing patients developing compression neuropathy, such as carpal tunnel, chronic sciatica and back pain and nerve damage associated with conditions like degenerative spinal disc disease and spinal stenosis. Part of this, of course, is because we are living longer and being more active than ever before.

Another common, but often overlooked, cause of peripheral neuropathy is the use of statin medication, which has expanded exponentially. It’s not too long ago that the statins were heralded to be the cure-all for many of mankind’s greatest diseases and illnesses. This is not the forum to debate the appropriate use of statins, but if you or a family member are taking them, you do need to be aware that peripheral neuropathy is a potential complication.

There are other causes of peripheral neuropathy, like kidney disease and hormonal diseases that occur in patients with hyperthyroidism, as well as Cushing’s disease, which affects the adrenal glands and the output of cortisol.

Alcoholism can cause peripheral neuropathy, as can vitamin deficiencies, especially deficiencies of thiamin, or vitamin B1. There are still more causes: chronic hypertension, cigarette-smoking, immune-complex diseases, generalized degenerative lifestyles that include obesity, poor diet combined with cigarette smoking, abuse of over-the-counter medications, etc.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

Hypoxia and Neuropathy (Part 2)

In our last post, we discussed hypoxia and neuropathy, specifically the chronic pain that results when nerve signal propagation is reduced between adjacent nerve cells due to insufficient oxygen being available to support nerve cell “health” (metabolism). This situation is responsible for many neuropathy and chronic pain cases.  The remaining 10% are caused by physical trauma.

As such, it appears the main precipitating factor is hypoxia and demineralization of the synaptic fluid which creates shrinkage of the nerve cells thus widening the gap between these cells making it more difficult for normal sensations to propagate, and loss of electrical conductivity in the synaptic fluid itself.

A temporary hypoxia of nerve tissue can be traced to most causes of neuropathy and chronic pain.  The primary negative effects are as follows:

• A defensive contraction of the nerve cell resulting in oversize synaptic junctions

• A loss of electrical conductivity of the synaptic fluid between nerve cells

• A defensive change in the electrical potentials of the cell membrane resulting in a higher resting state of the trigger level which effectively limits the sensitivity to incoming sign

When nerve signals can no longer jump the enlarged synaptic gap, the electrical tension that normally holds these minerals in place is absent, causing the synaptic fluid to leach out its mineral content. Electrical conductivity is reduced, thereby inhibiting the transmission of the normal nerves’ electrical signals across this gap.

Common short term remedies with prescription drugs only ameliorate the pain temporarily and do little or nothing to mitigate or cure the underlying condition.  They may provide some level of temporary relief, but as the disease progresses, the effective dosage of the drug needed to continue suppressing the pain increases concurrently.

The side effects of these types of drugs are difficult to deal with and add to the patient’s discomfort.  When the increased drug dosage reaches a threshold level, the patient can become confused, ataxic, constipated, confined to a wheelchair or may become bedridden.  Symptoms similar to Alzheimer’s may soon follow.

If you suffer from neuropathy or chronic pain, it is important that you discuss all of your treatment options with your healthcare providers. And as always, our NeuropathyDr clinicians are here to help answer any questions you may have.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to our newsletters at http://neuropathydr.com.

Hypoxia and Neuropathy (Part 1)

The common link in all of these peripheral neuropathies, regardless of the cause, appears to be hypoxia.

Hypoxia is simply a word that describes loss of oxygen. This occurs at what are called the neuronal junctions: the areas in the human body where one nerve cell communicates to another.

At a simplistic level, nerve cells communicate electrochemically across a gap. In neuropathy caused by hypoxia, this neuronal gap widens, which is theorized to be responsible for the symptoms that include not only the burning and the tingling but the shooting pains as well.

Neuropathy and chronic pain is characterized by pain, numbness, loss of tactile feedback, and poor tissue perfusion. These symptoms may indicate that oxygen is not getting to all the cells causing dysfunction.

Because the patient’s quality of life is decreased, these results are often devastating.  Pain medications do not cure the condition; it only helps mask it and, eventually, leads to complications with adverse side effects such as mental confusion and intestinal problems.

As a result of conducting our own research and reviewing published studies from around the world, we have been led to new models concerning the causes of neuropathy and chronic pain.  We have concluded that it is not reasonable to merely label neuropathy and chronic pain symptoms as diabetic, peripheral, vascular, or “idiopathic”. What is needed is a more full understanding of the etiology of the condition so new technology can be brought to bear with both ameliorative and therapeutic benefits.

We’ll discuss hypoxia, neuropathy, and chronic pain further in our next post.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Questioning The Status Quo

One of the things that we find very challenging, and gets in the way of patient progress many times, is the patient’s unwillingness to question the status quo.

Now, if you suffer from neuropathy or indeed many forms of chronic pain, spinal stenosis, fibromyalgia, etc. know that often times the only answers presented to you are drugs and more drugs.

By and large, our system does a terrible job of educating patients the impact that their lifestyles, diet, and fitness have on the progression and wherever possible reversal of their underlying diseases.

Question the status quo.

One of the fundamental reasons for this is that very little time in professional education is spent in these critical areas.

Furthermore, the constant barrage in all forms of media with drug-only solutions does tend to brainwash people. Also, it’s a sad fact that these tools are made available to patients with little or no cost out-of-pocket before potentially less harmful, less invasive alternatives.

Thanks to patients like you, however, all of this is changing.

Social networks like this continue to grow and bring alternative solutions to patients literally around the world.

Oftentimes though YOU need to carry this a step further when dealing with your healthcare professionals.

Ask more questions.

Be sure you fully engage your doctors and therapists!

You have every right to. After all, this is the only body you’ll ever get.

Talk neuropathy and pain treatment side effects. Talk risks versus benefits. Talk about trying alternative solutions FIRST!

Above all do something more every day to improve the quality of your health.

You’ll be glad you did!

Your body will thank you day after day!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Neuropathy Pain Is A Complex Phenomenon

Peripheral neuropathy pain and many forms of chronic pain are now easier than ever to manage at home and in the clinic.

Practical day-to-day solutions can be difficult for neuropathy and chronic pain patients to deal with.

This is largely because every single medication has potential side effects. Sometimes they’re not obvious for many years. With many over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen and NSAIDs, the side effects may not be apparent until liver or kidney failure appears.

This is not an exaggeration. If you follow us on social media, you know how often we talk about this; right now it is the number one cause of liver and kidney failure in this country. This is a huge public health epidemic.

Unfortunately, medical education generally does not do a good job of educating physicians on drug-free alternatives to pain management. For generations now, even children have been fed medications at an early age and taught this is the only solution.

There are even links to early dosages of acetaminophen and the development of asthma, and perhaps other health issues as well.

Let’s talk about the most practical solutions. First and foremost, rather than reaching for medications first, use all the drug-free alternatives you have at your disposal. Simple measures early on are far better. Applications of ice packs, warm packs, and Epsom salt baths still go a long way to solving many of life’s aches and pains.

Maintaining proper body weight and make sure you are eating an anti-inflammatory diet.

But neuropathy pain is a different animal. Severe pain—debilitating pain—from any source requires extraordinary measures. Still, the simple things we spoke about earlier can have a powerful impact.

This is especially true when simple measures are combined with appropriate dietary changes.

The good news is, peripheral neuropathy and many forms of chronic pain are now easier than ever to manage at home and in the clinic.

With the introduction of our new NDGen®, and ever improving in clinic protocols, more patients are finding better and longer lasting results than ever before.

Always remember though, the key to best managing neuropathy, arthritis, fibromyalgia, spinal pain, etc… is stopping pain at its source wherever possible—and rapidly! This means improving the overall function of your entire body early on, not simply masking pain with medication, and, most importantly, boosting and improving the efficiency and energy of your key body systems.

That’s what we help you do!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Copper: Another Key Neuropathy Nutrient

Most people don’t think about copper as a key nutrient. Or in any way related to peripheral neuropathy or chronic pain. But as you’ll see, a small daily amount is necessary and essential to normal health and well-being.

Only the tiniest amounts are necessary for normal health. But like so many nutrients, lack this tiny amount, and we cannot survive.

In the human body, copper serves several roles. Perhaps the most important are our body’s ability to process oxygen, and absorb iron. Both of these functions are of course essential to life.

We only need approximately 3 mg or so per day to remain healthy. Unfortunately, excess copper more than our bodies can normally dispose of can cause a whole host of health problems, and must be avoided.

The most common source of excess copper in humans is likely from copper plumbing.

Copper levels can be measured in the blood and in the hair.

As we discussed recently, excess zinc supplementation will deplete copper, creating a mineral imbalance and the health problems that go with it. So, excess zinc supplementation will cause a copper deficiency.

This can lead to a host of health problems. There is a syndrome called myeloneuropathy in which copper deficiency causes a B12 deficiency like illness, with damage to the nerves and spinal cord.

Likewise, copper deficiency due to excess zinc, either due to supplements or poisonings like denture cream, can lead to the development of neuropathy too.

One of the key functions of copper is maintenance of normal joint and soft tissue proteins. There is no scientific evidence that copper bracelets and copper socks and the like work for arthritis, even though this was once suggested as a possible cure.

Our NeuropathyDR diet is adequate for normal intake of copper because it is high in nuts and seeds. Additional good sources include olives and avocados. Paleo sources include shellfish, beef, and lamb.

Because copper is essential for normal cellular energy and respiration, a deficiency could aggravate many underlying conditions yes including chronic pain and neuropathy.

Now you know more about this pretty metal!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

A Simpler Chronic Pain and Neuropathy Treatment Strategy

Suffering from peripheral neuropathy or any other form of chronic pain can be difficult to manage on a day-to-day basis. But a simpler treatment strategy can often help alleviate much suffering for these individuals.

If you suffer from peripheral neuropathy or really any other form of chronic pain than you understand how difficult it can be manage this on a day-to-day basis.

One of the reasons for this is that by its definition chronic pain is insidious, meaning it tends to creep up slowly.

So like most patients for quite a long period of time you may have already tried a dozen or more medications.

But yet this entire time no one has helped you focus on the simpler things that can have enormous and often extraordinary benefits to your overall health, no matter what stage you’re at.

Specifically we’re talking about diet, meditation, mindfulness, stress reduction, and as much physical activity in which your condition will allow.

For those patients who have been seriously ill or recovering from surgery, this simply may be getting up and about out of bed more often with assistance, and at-home physical therapy.

In this category I would also add the appropriate use of non-drug treatment modalities, physical therapy modalities, massage, using your NDGen kit, and laser therapy.

Some of these are available in the clinic as well as at home.

What DOES not work is continually plying your body with more painkilling medications without paying attention to everything else.

Of course this is not to say that medications are not helpful. Often times these are extremely beneficial in helping to manage the pain and discomfort associated with neuropathy when it can be at its very worst.

But for too many, simply relying on these along while ignoring the simplest but critical things is doing you a tremendous disservice.

Many patients find that learning more about how these different tools, like the NDGen unit, and then redesigning a simpler life, along with reducing medications and their associated side effects, are more appropriate self-care strategies that go a long way towards helping them improve the quality of their life.

That’s why our clinicians are here! We stand by ready to help when you are.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Hydration is Crucial to Feeling Our Best

Maintaining adequate hydration can help you suffer less chronic pain and yes less neuropathy pain too!

Almost invariably when we see a new chronic pain patients in our practice, we discuss health habits and we find that more often than not, failure to drink adequate amount of water is almost universal.

So why is that?

Why would not drinking enough water tend to cause more widespread pains? There are several reasons and the answers are not complicated.

You see the vast majority of our body is made of water. Blood and all the critical fluids keep us functioning like well-oiled machines.

Our kidneys, brain, and all our other vital organs use these fluids to communicate and also perform daily purifications.

Yet most of us don’t pay nearly enough attention to this key fact.

So rather than going through our days drinking fluids, most especially water that will keep our blood and fluid volumes high, we tend to over consume caffeine, or worse yet soft drinks, and perhaps even alcohol which depletes our water reserves even further.

If we don’t drink enough water we can suffer an impaired ability of our vital organs like kidneys and liver that help rid our bodies of toxic wastes. These toxic wastes can make us stiff sore and uncomfortable.

If you already suffer from neuropathy or chronic pain, becoming even slightly dehydrated will make you feel a whole lot worse.

So how much water do you need to drink?

In the absence of kidney or heart disease, the proverbial eight glasses a day is about right.

A more accurate consumption is approximately half your body weight in ounces in a 24-hour period. This is not 100 percent accurate but it’s a darn good approximation.

There are of course other factors which may require more or less water consumption.

This of course includes how much you perspire, the outside air temperature, and yes even the humidity.

So for example, if you weigh 200 pounds, you’d be consuming approximately 100 ounces of water during the course of the daily 24-hour period. That may sound like a lot, but it’s under a gallon in 24 hours.

As always you need to work with your doctors on your own personal medical issues that you may have questions or concerns about.

You may want to ask for the simple blood tests which measure your electrolytes and relative hydration.

Working together maintaining adequate hydration can help you suffer less chronic pain and yes less neuropathy pain too!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Help Your Body Detoxify Naturally

One of the things that is very popular after the first of the year in many people are weight loss and exercise programs. Today we’re going to discuss some regimens that will help you detoxify naturally from some of the less-than-healthy choices you may have may in the previous year.

Unfortunately, New Year’s resolutions and intentions are made shortly after the holidays, and usually fizzle out by the middle of February.

This is just reality, it is human behavior. But there is part of this strategy you need to know that can be dangerous, especially if you have neuropathy, fibromyalgia, or chronic pain.

In particular, don’t put yourself at risk by consuming dietary shakes, or pills of the compounds which contain multiple combinations of herbs.

The reality is the interaction of all these together on your body is not well known at all.

In fact, some are downright toxic.

I actually have seen a 20-something year old patient develop peripheral neuropathy after consuming a “diet shake” just for a week.

Impossible? No. In fact, more and more younger patients are showing up in emergency rooms after consuming energy and diet drinks. More than ever.

This is also one of the reasons that you will not find any herbal preparation in either the supplements or topical preparations we suggest and use in our clinic’s every day.

For most patients, following our NeuropathyDR diet, carbohydrate control, physical activity, and exercise wherever possible can make an enormous difference in weight control and, yes, even weight loss after the holidays.

One other thing, be honest with yourself! If you have diligently tried the suggestions we talked about above, but still have difficulty with your weight, then it’s possible there’s some hormonal factors at work. These need to be identified and worked out with your physicians.

Stay away from fasts, and other rapid weight-loss programs. Sometimes, these can really aggravate underlying neuropathy and chronic pain conditions such as fibromyalgia.

The reason is some of the the so-called “detox programs” may actually “pull” potential toxins in from your body faster, resulting in higher concentrations, and ultimately aggravating your condition.

Finally, it is a really good idea to warn our children of the dangers of some “diet and energy” drinks.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Zinc and Your Health

As you know, zinc is a metal. It is used in a process applied to preserve metals from corrosion, especially in salt water. This of course is called galvanization. But what you may not know is that zinc also plays a large role in your health, especially neurologic and immune system-related issues.

Zinc and Your Health

Like so many nutrients, balance is everything. Too much zinc will suppress the immune system and cause difficulties with copper levels. Too little zinc can create problems ranging from memory impairment to prostate disease.

Yes, neurologic dysfunction can result when zinc is deficient. According to Hambridge et al in 2007 in “Zinc deficiency a special challenge”, it is stated that zinc is an element with “profound biologic significance”. In fact, zinc deficiencies worldwide are responsible for many disease states.

Perhaps the most important thing to understand is that zinc imbalances are relatively common. This is due both to low levels in foods of modern agriculture as well as elevated levels of copper due to plumbing and environmental sources.

In the clinic, we will measure hair and blood levels of these crucial elements when assessing nutrition status.

In our bodies, zinc can actually act as an antioxidant. This protects us against damage from environmental assaults, as well as natural aging. The presence of zinc is essential for normal nerve function.

It is well-known that zinc can speed the healing process and, in essential amounts, will help stimulate the immune system and possibly prevent prostate disease.

When zinc is used in shampoos and skin lotions, it can act as a sunscreen, a soothing dressing, and also help prevent dandruff.

The reason that zinc is so important is that it participates in many chemical reactions, especially in enzymes.

The recommended dietary allowance for zinc is around 15 mg per day. However modern diets alone sometimes fall short of this.

The good news is, the neuropathy diet that we recommend is high in nuts and seeds which provide relatively good zinc levels. Seafood, shellfish in particular, can be great sources of dietary zinc.

For most patients, safe zinc supplementation level is probably not more than 25 mg per day. More than 50 mg a day could be detrimental. Like so many nutrients, this is one area where working with your neuropathy healthcare professionals is essential if there are any questions at all about appropriate zinc dosages.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Neuropathy Myths Busted!

Having neuropathy and chronic pain requires incredible attention to your lifestyle. It’s important to separate the facts from the myths!

One of the things that frustrates patients and doctors alike in our clinic is the idea that once neuropathy or chronic pain has set in, all the patient needs to do is take this pill or that.

This treatment or that, this miracle supplement, or creme, or that…

Nothing—and I mean nothing—could be further from the truth.

Worse yet is thinking that just because chemotherapy has stopped, or diabetes is better controlled, that neuropathy, along with the burning pain, numbness, and sleepless nights will somehow miraculously disappear.

Of course, sometimes this does happen. But that is actually relatively rare.

The reality is, whatever has caused your neuropathy, recovery is often complex and requires multiple steps and components!

The reason for this is that once nerve damage has set in, some might be permanent—or reversible, but very slowly.

This means your body needs a healing push in the right direction.

This “push” includes all the good things you can do for yourself, including specific home-care tools, like neurostim.

This is also where complementing your nutrition support, including very complete and unfragmented oral and topical programs, can go a long way.

These actually target cell energy, efficiency, and recovery potential—not simply masking neuropathy symptoms.

You see, the more you can do to stimulate a healing response in particular, the better your results will be. And the better your chances of having a more complete recovery.

Delay, or simply mask your symptoms and you will not be as fortunate.

This also requires incredible attention to your lifestyle, in detail. Is this difficult? You bet! But think of it this way: What are the alternatives to really having a lasting and best result?

Just as if you had major surgery, even something such as a heart transplant, you need to give your body every chance you can!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Are All the Peripheral Neuropathies the Same?

No, all the peripheral neuropathies are not the same. However, we find that the patients who present with peripheral neuropathy, regardless of the cause, do have remarkably similar symptoms.

The good news with our treatment program has been that even in the presence of similar symptoms from different etiologies (causes), the corrective care for peripheral neuropathies is often remarkably effective, regardless of the primary cause. That is the beauty of the treatment system that we employ.

In order to find out what components of peripheral neuropathy you have, your doctor will conduct a very thorough evaluation. This will include things such as taking your vital signs, body mass index, the mobility and range of motion of your lower back and hips, and the overall health of your feet, skin, nails and hair, blood vessels, and circulation. This might include Doppler ultrasound, which is a simple painless test to check for blood flow or blockages.

As the doctor performs her clinical examination, she’ll also perform a very thorough neurological examination including reflexes, muscle-testing, and sensation to touch using a device as simple as a pin, a brush, or perhaps even a pinwheel. Doctors commonly will also check your vibration sensation, which very often is disturbed in peripheral neuropathy. This is done painlessly and very easily through the use of simple tuning forks. Your balance will also be assessed.

Laboratory tests may very well be performed. These would include things such as a chemistry panel, and kidney and liver function. Your doctor will also want to double check your blood sugar levels and more than likely perform a hemoglobin A1c.

This particular test is very good at identifying patients who may be borderline diabetic. I have found many patients who present with neuropathy symptoms have yet to be diagnosed with diabetes, but may very well suffer from what’s called metabolic syndrome. This is when your body abnormally handles blood sugar, which may unfortunately lead to the development of neuropathy and other diabetic complications well before the formal diagnosis is made.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Eating More Often Can Manage Neuropathy and Weight

Eating more frequently will stimulate your metabolism—or, how efficiently you burn versus store fat, keep your blood sugar even, and help keep you warmer. Eating more frequently can also help patients who are dealing with neuropathy and weight issues that can arise from their medical condition(s).

On the surface, a statement like that might seem wrong. After all, isn’t eating at the root of weight gain, obesity, and its complications? To a point, yes. This is especially true when we consume far more calories in one sitting then we need, and load our meals with carbohydrates and poor-quality fats.

But a little-known fact is that when we eat less frequently, we become much more efficient at storing fat rather than burning it.

So what does this have to do with managing peripheral neuropathy?

Neuropathy and Weight

The bottom line is, eating more frequently will stimulate your metabolism—or, how efficiently you burn fat versus store fat, keep your blood sugar more even, and actually help keep you warmer. For patients who suffer from peripheral neuropathy, all of these improvements are crucial.

But this does not mean you can eat anything you want. What we do know is that by consuming relatively low amounts of carbohydrates in our meals, along with periodic snacks, we become much more efficient metabolically.

What I tell all my neuropathy patients—and, indeed, every patient—is to try to eat something not more than three hours apart. For example, you will start your breakfast with something like a protein shake, or a small serving of steel-cut oatmeal with a little added fat, perhaps some berries. Approximately two hours later, you’ll have six to 10 almonds, or perhaps another lean, low-carbohydrate snack if allergies are a problem.

Now, if you are insulin-dependent diabetic, some of what I say here will not apply, so please be careful here.

Again, this points out the need to work with well-trained neuropathy treatment professionals to truly manage your peripheral neuropathy and weight issues, indeed, your health in general.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Do You Suffer From Neuropathy Overwhelm?

Don’t let Neuropathy Overwhelm get the best of you. For many with the most common forms of neuropathy there are more treatment options than ever before!

One of the common things about neuropathy in most forms, except CMT, HNPP and other genetic cases is, most patients don’t even know what it is until they have it.

So a neuropathy diagnosis can come as a shock!

Up until recently, the approach to treatment has been drug-only. For years, patients heard the following, and unfortunately still often do:

“There is NOTHING you can do.” or “Just take the meds and live with it.”

Or worse.

Now, sometimes this is unfortunately true, and we are not offering false hope to those devastated patients we so wish we could do more for.

But, the reality for many with the most common forms of neuropathy (idiopathic neuropathy, diabetic neuropathy, post chemotherapy neuropathy, small fiber neuropathy) is there are more treatment options than ever before.

Sometimes these can actually replace drug-only treatment options for patients. That’s really exciting for all of us!

We raised the awareness of single-frequency neurostimulation treatment when we first published Beating Neuropathy: Taking Misery to Miracles in Just Five Weeks!

Then, in just two short years of continuous work and development of treatment systems, we found better and better ways to help patients.

Things like laser and LED, vibration therapy, certain dietary supplement combinations… There are also certain other neuropathy treatment combinations, and even more powerful devices available now, thanks to some very bright and caring people.

Just as I predicted, patients now have more neuropathy treatment options than ever—and it can be overwhelming.

But there is a strategy you can use that will help!

First, understand you may never know 100% what caused your neuropathy. Sure, sometimes it’s very straightforward, but in most patients, it’s actually a combination of many things. Diet, lifestyle, obesity, and smoking are at the top of the list.

Secondly, delaying fixing correctable things like smoking, obesity (even as little as 10-20 pounds) poor, highly processed foods and sugar-laden diets, and excess alcohol consumption commonly make things worse.

So, start by making a list, two columns only. Call the first “things I could improve”. This is the time to be really honest with yourself. List out all we spoke about above, mainly lifestyle choices and habits.

In the second column, put “what I need to investigate”. Include “drugs I may be taking” and “tests I need to ask about”.

Lastly, we firmly believe that patients suffering from neuropathy and chronic pain deserve and should get very comprehensive approaches to care.

And DON’T delay treatment while searching for answers you may never find about causes. The good news is, many patients are good responders to our neuropathy treatment combinations!

But, as I’m sure you can see, good neuropathy treatment has now become a specialty all of its own! So choose your professional care very carefully.

Just be sure to do your homework first to avoid neuropathy treatment overwhelm!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Eating Smart to Improve Neuropathy and Chronic Pain

Eating smart, such as getting used to smaller meals, and adding low-carbohydrate snacks, can help neuropathy and chronic pain patients feel much better.

One of the things that most patients with neuropathy—and many patients with chronic pain—discover, is that keeping well-fueled and well-hydrated goes a long way towards possibly reducing symptoms and improving the quality of life!

Now, the reasons for this are many, but the bottom line is: paying better attention to basic body needs dramatically improves the function of our brain and nervous system.

There are a couple of basic rules that serve most neuropathy and chronic pain patients very well.

First, let’s talk a little about water consumption. An easy rule of thumb is to consume one half your body weight in ounces during a 24-hour period.

So, if we weigh a hundred and eighty pounds, we should drink ninety ounces of water (or non-alcohol liquids) in a 24-hour period.

Remember, coffee, tea, and alcohol can cause us to lose fluid more rapidly, so go easy here. Under no circumstances should diet or other soft drinks be consumed.

Next, the mainstay or proper fueling is eating every 2 to 3 hours’ maximum. Getting used to smaller meals, and adding low-carbohydrate snacks such as several nuts or one half of an apple or other low-carb fruit, can help us feel much better.

The reason for this is it helps us maintain normal blood sugar levels and helps us burn fat more efficiently.

What a lot of people don’t understand is eating infrequently makes us much more efficient at producing body fat.

So, conversely, eating more frequently makes us feel better—and helps fuel us much more efficiently.

This is also what helps us fight things like diabetes and metabolic syndrome—that, as you already know, complicate many health problems, and make neuropathy and pain worse.

Like everything, there are exceptions to these rules. For example, if you’re insulin-dependent, you need to match your insulin dosage against your carbohydrate consumption very carefully.

Likewise, if you suffer from kidney or heart disease, you may need to be more careful with fluid consumption. Always follow your doctor’s orders.

Try these simple suggestions starting today, and see how much better you may feel within just a few days!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Don’t Fall for Quick Fixes and Miracle Cures

The one most important thing you can do as a neuropathy patient or family member is to do your homework, very carefully! Don’t Fall for Quick Fixes and Miracle Cures.

You know what I’m talking about

You have seen these ads for miracle cures as often as I have. ”Take this one miraculous supplement and your neuropathy will disappear.” Sometimes it’s just, “put this into your shoes and watch the miracles begin.”

Unfortunately, as you well know, neuropathy and most forms of chronic pain (like fibromyalgia and arthritis) need a multi-pronged approach in order for patients to improve—or, whenever possible, recover!

You also understand that quality-of-life is the most important objective for any neuropathy or chronic pain patient.

Now, I’d be the last to want to discount the value of good marketing… just as long as the solutions are ethical and viable.

But I will repeatedly tell you that the one most important thing you can do as a neuropathy patient or family member is to do your homework, very carefully!

This is exactly why at our centers we advocate a multi-pronged approach to treatment. There is no one magic nutrient, therapy, or technique that by itself is going to restore your health immediately.

This is a fact. What is most important, however, is that you keep yourself on track, making incremental—but definite—progress, on a daily basis!

You know I write about this extensively: things such as maintaining a carbohydrate controlled, dairy and gluten-free diet, getting as much physical activity as your condition allows, and really taking the time to understand the impact that a high-sugar and carbohydrate diet has on your health—and how destructive this can be. Understand that sitting for as little as 90 minutes at a time can slow your metabolism dramatically.

All of these things we have written or spoken about on our radio shows and articles during the last 90 days.

Above all, it is critical to be working with healthcare professionals, who are on your side and encourage you to improve your health—not just calm your neuropathy symptoms with medication.

This is what we do all day long—train chronic pain health care professionals to be their very best for you!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.

Neuropathy, Vitamin B1, and Diabetes: What You Need to Know

Did you know that Thiamine, or Vitamin B1, can actually improve blood sugar levels—and thus, diabetes?

Not too long ago, we spoke about a very important vitamin, and its role in neuropathy and chronic pain. This vitamin was B1, or Thiamine. As you may remember, B1 is part of the family of water-soluble vitamins, and our body storage is limited. Therefore, it is relatively easy to become deficient or suffer from low levels relatively quickly.

Perhaps the most significant cause of low thiamine in our society is the high carbohydrate diets that so many people consume. You see, thiamine is necessary for our bodies to produce energy. When we lack thiamine, a whole host of health problems can develop.

What many patients and their doctors may be ignorant of is the fact that thiamine (vitamin B1) can actually improve blood sugar levels—and, thus, diabetes.

In fact, in borderline diabetes, vitamin B1 may actually help drop blood sugars, and what is called glucose tolerance, or how our bodies handle sugar, to normal within a month.

I have even seen insulin-dependent diabetics drop their blood sugars over 200 points, one virtually overnight with as little as 25 mg of thiamine.

Like many nutrients, this is one place you really need to work with your clinicians. You and your doctors need to know that taking additional vitamin B1 can reduce need for medications, and sometimes even insulin.

This becomes even truer as you improve the overall quality of your diet. You and your doctors also should be aware that all not all vitamin B1 is created the same.

In particular we are very partial to Allithiamine. It is tolerated better than most other forms and is taken up by the body more efficiently than the common thiamine hydrochloride.

And this is precisely why that we recommend all diabetic patients get in the habit of checking their blood sugars on a regular basis.

This is also why sticking to a carbohydrate-controlled diet is essential.

The most important things to avoid are processed breads and grains, as well as sugars, soft drinks, candy, and virtually all sweets. You also need to be very careful with sugary or dried fruits. If you missed it, go back and review our last post about the NeuropathyDr Diet. We highly recommend this diet to our patients.

Some excellent sources of thiamine in the diet include tuna, sunflower seeds, pistachios, and other nuts, as well as many beans.

Be sure to add more of these to your diet on a daily basis and work closely with your healthcare professionals on optimum supplementation to help improve your diabetes!

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at http://neuropathydr.com.