To think all of this began with hormone testing. I had a chat with my GI doctor yesterday (and no, I didn’t know I wanted one of those). Before I launch into what he thought about my recent elevated liver enzymes, I want to share his response when I asked his thoughts on a liver/gall bladder cleanse. He is after all a Western doctor. Liver and gall bladder cleanses are definitely on the more functional side of things. He wasn’t for or against. Here’s why. He said he’s wholly willing to embrace something outside of Western medicine but there hasn’t been enough conclusive science about it for him to have a strong opinion.
His point is this. Studies could have had too few subjects, or no organized studies may have been done to show anything. Some natural methods could in fact work but not have ever been tested and published with any science to support. It leaves things wide open for trust and experience. He did say nothing harmful can happen from it. So in the end, like a lot of tests or info gathering you and I must do: I have to make my own decision.
Like my friend Chris Wark’s opted to do everything that he could naturally instead of chemo (whether you want to prevent cancer, or you’d opt to do traditional therapies or not), I’d choose to do everything in my power no matter what I else I chose. I do believe the body can heal itself. I also believe that sometimes science is necessary to help.
So I’m back to the prospect of coffee enemas and a protocol of apple cider vinegar, Epsom salt water, and olive oil and grapefruit juice. During a light physical training weekend, that’s the plan. You don’t want to go through that during heavy stress or chaotic days.
My doc’s plan? A new blood test checking for an arm-long list of things that go a little deeper than a usual blood tests or even those hormone testing draws and then we either have something targeted to treat or eliminate them and then we just leave it as a normal abnormal and recheck in 6-12 months.
Hormone Testing to Toxin Removal
What’s been a wake up call for me and I hope for you too, is that our environment is full of toxins. They get lodged and stored in our bodies. None of my habits point to the usual reasons for non-alcoholic fatty liver – one reason for abnormally high liver enzymes. In fact, they all point away from anything that would cause it. Thus, even without external signs and symptoms, the aggressive steps to find out what it might be and eliminate anything serious.
That said, its time to dial up self care and detox. Hormone testing does one thing for sure. When you start looking, you can’t bury your head in the sand. It is all connected. I’ve loved that since I began self-ordered tests in 2014 for the research on You Still Got It, Girl! I’m temporarily at least doing filtered water until I get test results back from my tap water. Ridding yourself of old fillings, reducing exposure to large fish with mercury, eating whole foods and avoiding processed, and upgrading makeup and personal products are other things you should consider if you haven’t. I’m also spending time doing saunas. The elevation of core temperature from “full spectrum” infrared saunas has positive health benefits.
What is “full spectrum” Infrared?
Infrared wavelengths are the invisible part of the sun’s spectrum consisting of near (NIR), mid (MIR) and far (FIR) rays. These rays have the ability to penetrate human tissue. This characteristic makes infrared beneficial because it heats the body directly at the core rather than simply warming the air resulting in a deep, detoxifying sweat at the cellular level, where the majority of toxins reside.
Infrared heat is completely safe and healthy for all living things. You can be exposed to infrared light for hours without the risk of burning. Infrared is a naturally occurring output of the sun, but does not contain the harmful UV rays associated with unprotected sunlight. In fact, infrared’s gentle heat is used in hospitals to warm newborn infants.
Toxins such as sodium, alcohol, nicotine, cholesterol and carcinogenic heavy metals (like arsenic and mercury in my case that are “high normal”) accumulate in the body during modern daily life. Studies have shown that FIR raises core body temperature stimulating the sweat glands resulting in a deep, detoxifying sweat ridding the body of toxins. Hormone testing can reveal your need to reduce these literal stressors that overwhelm your system.
Increase Cell Health & Boost Immunity
Several studies have shown that near infrared properties can help improve cell health, enhance muscle recovery and boost immune defenses. A NASA study concluded that NIR LED technology can quadruple cell health and tissue growth. Another study done at the Medical College of Wisconsin demonstrated that LED-produced near infrared helps promote cell health and regeneration. Lastly, a study from The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology concluded that LED near infrared (NIR) restores enzyme activity and reduces cell death by half.
An Anti-Aging Bonus?
IR improves circulation, expels dirt & chemicals and removes dead cells on the surface of the skin resulting in a better complexion. I for one, have been least excited about pimples and wrinkles in the same decade when it comes to skin. That two-for-one I don’t recall signing up for. Friends of mine shared a recent study published in The Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy with me that showed significant improvements in skin appearance after just 12 weeks of NIR therapy. That’s better skin by 2018. I’m in though it probably isn’t motivation enough alone to get me to do sauna time regularly, it’s a perk! Reduced wrinkles and crow’s feet, improved overall skin tone, softness, smoothness, elasticity, clarity and firmness? I’m in.
With my additional training right now (September is a bigger volume month), recovery is of course a concern, but when isn’t it? With a full life, a busy schedule, and very active (mentally and physically) days I don’t want any of it to slow me down. Infrared can increase recovery and reduce soreness from exercise.
As you can see, infrared saunas are worth their weight in gold, and they are not terribly expensive either. After some research and personal recommendations from friends, I’ve found Sunlighten to be one of the best on the market at an unbeatable price. So if you want to create your own wellness stay-cation and detox sanctuary like us, be sure to check out Sunlighten Saunas.
While I’m renting a home, the portable option is the answer. My ideal is a larger model for a little more relaxation that isn’t quite so mobile. I know others who like not having their face inside but I want the full benefits from total immersion.
It all started with Hormone Testing
This all seems like a little road trip I didn’t plan on taking. I came close to canceling that appointment yesterday. I felt silly really. I feel fine. Great in fact. Full of energy, no signs and symptoms, and no bad habits or issues that would seem to be indicators of the test levels. In fact, I double-checked that he had the referring Dr.’s reasons and lab tests prior because I was imagining this moment where he’d say, “Why are you here?” and I’d say, “I don’t know! Nothing seems wrong and I have 5 other things I’d rather be doing!”
Now to make time to stop and get the blood tests. More on results next week! Meanwhile, loving some of the therapies I’m making regular habits because of this!