It Can’t Be My Diet!

It Can’t Be My Diet!

”Why do I feel so lousy all the time?”

Unfortunately we hear this often at our NeuropathyDR clinics. You see, there is a tendency now for people not to prepare or consume fresh foods, especially vegetables. Too often, fast food works its way into our diets.

As for people with peripheral neuropathy and chronic pain, this is like pouring gasoline on fire!

The reason for this is that poor food choices raise blood fats and blood sugars. When blood sugar is increased, some of the sugar molecules tend to attach to proteins; proteins like those that help make up our muscles and skin.

This then leads to aches, stiffness, and quite possibly inflammation. For the peripheral neuropathy sufferer, regardless of the cause, this typically poor diet seems to make it worse.

Increased sugar consumption in addition to aggravating your underlying neuropathy, will cause you to gain weight, lose energy and sleep more poorly.

The good news is however when you make deliberate changes to when and how you are eating, you often times will find yourself feeling better than ever!

So, how do we do this without becoming overwhelmed?

The simplest way to do this is to keep a food diary or record for a week. Keep track of everything you consume. You may be shocked at how much sugar is in things like soda, ice cream, and other things that may have become a staple for your diet.

Like most neuropathy patients, you probably know you should be eating better.

When neuropathy patients write all of this down, changes are much easier for us to help you with.

Always remember, neuropathy is oftentimes a manifestation, or made worse by poor metabolism, secondary to poor diet and lack of enough activity.

Improving both of these can often improve most forms of peripheral neuropathy!

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

Common Sense Approach to Neuropathy Treatment

Common Sense Approach to Neuropathy Treatment

Would you hit a Fly with a Sledgehammer?

Of course not. It’s just common sense!

Then why are clinicians prescribing invasive methods of treatment for any condition before more simple and often times old fashioned common sense methods?

Why has so much about modern healthcare, for what were once relatively simple to manage conditions, become just like this?

One relatively recent example was highlighted by the deaths and serious infections due to contamination of steroids and drugs administered for back pain and spinal injections.

Of course I’m not saying these don’t have a place. They do.

What I have issue with is when invasive methods of treatment for any condition are prescribed before more simple and often times old fashioned common sense methods of management for spine pain including modified rest, exercise, traction, physical therapy, spinal manipulation, and noninvasive therapy modalities.

The same could also be said for many of the other conditions that we now treat with drugs instead of lifestyle and behaviors FIRST.  This includes GERD, minor depression, sleep disturbance, fibromyalgia, and other forms of chronic pain.

Furthermore, third-party payers and insurance companies do not help the situation because often reimbursement is provided for invasive and expensive procedures while these modalities are simply considered “not medically necessary”. There is no common sense in any of this!

I’m old enough to remember when this was never the case. Unfortunately, it’s also been very difficult to change. However there are some things you can do.

First of all, always inquire about inexpensive and noninvasive procedures when considering any healthcare choice. This is especially true in spine pain and peripheral neuropathy.

For example, too often patients with peripheral neuropathy are treated with expensive medications with significant side effects before exploring possible underlying causes that are easily correctable such as obesity and metabolic syndrome.

And very often patients tell us the side effects from the treatment with medications and invasive injections for pain are worse than the disorder itself!

But there are some things you can do, and one of them you’re doing right now.

And that is to learn everything you can to become your own health care advocate.

Now this is a situation that also has significant ties to politics and government, I’ll let you have those discussions on your own.

However if you like my input, I’m more than happy to contribute!

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

Personal Choices in Obesity Related Neuropathy

Personal Choices in Obesity Related Neuropathy

Food supply is a doubled edged sword. As little as 50 years ago, foods in some areas of the modern world were in short supply. Modern food processing and even food “manufacturing” has changed all that.

Food itself is far more plentiful for most people than at any time in our history. And that unfortunately has created lots of problems.

Obesity, diabetes and a very common form of peripheral neuropathy are very closely linked. Neuropathy and diabetes are both much more common now a days, and showing up in younger ages than ever before in our modern world.

 

Along with supply, has come a huge increase in the “density” of calories. A calorie is a simple measure of energy potential in what we eat and drink. An average healthy person may only need around 2000 calories per day. But the problem is, its possible to eat (very easily) way more than that, even in 1 meal! Yikes!

So, this means that a cup of a processed food for example can have 3 times the calories and fewer nutrients than a cup of say steamed vegetables, or even lean protein.

And consume these foods long enough before you know it you’ve packed on 20, 40, 60 or more pounds and neuropathy, diabetes and heart disease can and often do result.

Recently, there has been a wave of politicians attempting to legislate better health habits. What a theft of personal choice that is!

Just consider the proposals made by Mayor Bloomberg, and others who wanted to ban sales of certain foods! Quite frankly I’m appalled.

Aren’t we big boys and girls any more? Can we still teach our kids right from wrong? Behavior has consequences!

Real empowerment in neuropathy or any disease comes from the choices you and I make every day. The good news is progress from food companies is being made. Slow, but real.

I’m rather about adults learning what’s best and teaching our children better personal choices every day!

How about you?

I once had the opportunity to interview the famous Hank Cardello, a former food executive and the author of “Stuffed”.

Listen in as Hank and I discuss the Obesity Epidemic and The Food Industry…

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

How Behavior Affects Neuropathy

How Behavior Affects Neuropathy

Does My Behavior Affect My Neuropathy?”

“Wow. You mean how I act around my family, and even my health care professionals has an impact on my peace of mind, my health and maybe even my neuropathy treatment?”

In a word, yes! This may be a very difficult discussion for some, but a very important one. In the clinic, we call this “illness behavior”.

Lets break it down. When you were a little kid, you likely got those scrapes from falling down, or maybe the assault from a bully, or even something worse. Just like me you learned that being “sick” certainly brings more attention to us. And in an emergency, rightly so!

But NOT letting the correct people know you need help in a crisis is just as bad!

Problems arise when we carry these inappropriate learned behaviors from childhood over into adulthood. Often it begins subconsciously. Being diagnosed with a new health problem, like peripheral neuropathy, having a genetic disease or major accident is life changing.

These all require a period of time to uncover real choices, treatment options, etc. And in neuropathy treatments especially this is true now more than ever as more and more neuropathy claims are being made.

Here’s my point. When we display illness behaviors, the biggest negative effect is on ourselves! If we tell our subconscious mind how sick we are, what do we get? More sickness!

This in no way demeans anyone suffering from a serious or life threatening disease. But plenty of studies even involving really sick patients tell us as neuropathy treatment specialists that when you have a healthier outlook, and a healthy set of behaviors to match, the greater the chance we have at doing really well with your treatment success!

We also know that our attitudes and behaviors affect our immune systems, our sleep, and yes even our aging process.

We also know that even in really severe illness, our behaviors have a huge impact.

If you’d like another perspective, watch at the link below as I talk for 3 minutes about the theory of learned helplessness…

Feeling Helpless?

And the most difficult but important behavior of all?

Asking for professional and spiritual guidance, or in a word: acceptance.

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

The Second Step in Neuropathy Treatment

The Second Step in Neuropathy Treatment

Recently we talked about the very first step in dealing with neuropathy, and really any major life challenge. Pain is something nobody welcomes into his or her life.

In last week’s discussion, you heard Mal Duane and I talk about a different approach to treating neuropathy patients than you may have expected. And I bet you don’t about hear it from your friends who do not suffer neuropathy, and maybe even your own doctors.

Simply put, we spoke about regaining a sense of control. Just taking some really very basic steps. You see, so much of modern health care is still about what can doctors do for us, when instead we should be asking ourselves daily “Am I doing my part and what else should I be doing?

Or not doing.

In the clip below, I spoke with Lara Amaral about chronic pain, inflammation and neuropathy, their causes, and what you can do to help yourself deal with many forms of chronic pain.

Dr John Hayes Jr Discusses Healthy Habits, Neuropathy and Pain

So if regaining control is the first step, then “action” is the second step. A game plan in any of life’s goals, backed up by great coaches and cheerleaders, is so important to all of us, whether we admit it or not.

Action is what allows us to actually maintain the control we start out with! And it could be the simplest step!  For example, today, it’s no more soda. Next week is cutting the poor foods out of our diet. Even if these steps have to be taken one by one.

Think about that. Don’t you feel better with each good thing you do just for you, just because it’s the right thing to do?

But we can’t have one without the other. Intention without action is wasted life energy. To do so is inviting failure.

And I know that’s not what you want from your neuropathy treatments.

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