Every month I'll veer from the normal blog post to share with you the Optimize Monthly. An update with health tips, the latest research, and what Optimize Chiropractic is up to this month. I hope you enjoy!
Why Is Winter Flu Season?
It’s flu season. Over 40 states in the US have widespread outbreaks according to the CDC.
So why do we get more sick in the winter compared to the summer and what should we do about it?
There are a couple theories why this happens and I’ll briefly go over one of them.
1. Vitamin D deficiency.
It’s cold so we don’t go outside as much. This leads to less vitamin D, which we would normally get from the sun.
This matters because Vitamin D keeps you healthy or more specifically helps modulate immune responses.
So proper vitamin D in the summer = your body having a proper immune response and being able to fight off the flu in the summer. In the winter, less vitamin D = your body doesn’t have the proper immune response and you get sick.
What do we do about that?
Get more Vitamin D!
The NIH (National Institute of Health) recommends that you get 400-800 IU’s of vitamin D per day.
400 for ages 0-12 months, 600 IUs for 1-70 years old, and 800 IU’s if over 70 years old. An IU is not the same as an mg!
Remember Vitamin D is fat soluble so it is a vitamin that you can take too much of. 40,000 IUs daily is what is considered toxic.
So how do you reach your recommended doses?
Cod liver oil, 1 tablespoon = 1360 IU’s per serving
Salmon 3oz = 447 IU's
Canned Tuna, 3 oz = 154 IU’s
Milk Vit D fortified, 1 cup = 115-124 IU’s
1 Large egg (vit D found in the yolk) = 41 IU’s
5-30 minutes in the sun twice a week with face, arms or
While it is possible for you to get your recommended daily intake through food many people choose to take supplements to accomplish this.
If you choose to go the supplement route here are some guidelines to follow.
a. Look to see if the supplement is 3rd party tested. Often times it's advertised on the label, if not a quick Google search should tell you.
b. Avoid the bottom of the barrel products if the price looks too good to be true it probably is.
c. Spend some time researching the product you want to buy. It's your health and worth the time to look into.
Vitamin D should be used cautiously by those taking cardiac glycosides and anyone with hypercalcemia. Vitamin D supplements may interact with atorvastatin and thiazide diuretics. Always Consult your healthcare practitioner before adding any supplements into your diet.
Black Pepper To Optimize Your Nutrient Absorption
Everyone is looking for ways to be healthier. Black Pepper is a way to make what you’re eating, healthier.
Not directly, and not if you’re eating unhealthy food.
If you are eating healthy, 4 servings of vegetables a day, minimum! Than I strongly suggest adding black pepper to your meals.
Black pepper helps you absorb more of what you eat also known as increasing the bioavailability of ingested nutrients and phytonutrients.
It does this by increasing different physiological processes during digestion. This helps your body absorb more of the nutrients in the food you’re eating.
Sprinkle some black pepper on every meal to help optimize your absorption. If you don’t want to do that, you’ll have to eat more veggies.
What Is Normal?
How do you know if you have a fever?
How do you know if you have high blood pressure?
You only know what’s abnormal because you know what’s normal.
Whether familiar with them or not, there are in fact “normals” in all aspects of life.
In many cases life gives us warning signs so we know when there is a problem. Just take a look at your car dashboard and you’ll see a plethora or warning indicators to let you know when things aren’t right (aka “normal”).
In the human body, our warning signals are a number of Secondary Conditions.
As you are probably aware Secondary Conditions; migraines, headaches, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and more are often the result of a Primary Condition.
This Primary Condition is when the body is misaligned. Normal alignment is when there is balance between the left and right side of the body, the shoulders and hips are in near the same horizontal plane and there is minimum head or neck tilt. When not in this normal state it is called a Structural Misalignmen and can lead to many different secondary conditions.