Category Archives: Featured

WTH is “brown fat” and why should I care about it?

Brown fat helps with fat loss!

Really interesting article just surfaced this week showing that humans have much more “brown fat” than originally understood.  So why is this important?  Humans have brown fat, beige fat, and white fat.  Bottom line: brown fat is packed with mitochondria, and increasing and activation of brown stores causes your metabolic rate to rise, weight loss, and all sorts of other amazing health benefits.  Here are some excerpts from the article:

“The researcher suggested that this may point to a possible explanation for the phenomenon that some persons seem to gain weight after only one extra piece of cake, while others can gorge on sweets without gaining at all — different body weights despite having the same diet.

“Ultimately, with medication that activates brown adipose tissue, we must anticipate that some groups of people are likely to benefit from an additional activation of brown fat more than others,” the author of the study explained. “So far, we don’t know the causes for a particular individual to have especially active brown fat.””

I find it interesting that the study authors go straight to pharmaceutical drugs as the solution to activate brown fat.

You don’t need medication to activate Brown Adipose Tissue (BAT)!

This can be achieved by cold therapy (CT) “Cold acclimation recruits human brown fat and increases nonshivering thermogenesis”:

“Here, we show that a 10-day cold acclimation protocol in humans increases BAT activity in parallel with an increase in nonshivering thermogenesis (NST).”

“The combined results suggest that a variable indoor environment with frequent cold exposures might be an acceptable and economic manner to increase energy expenditure and may contribute to counteracting the current obesity epidemic.”

Takeaway – cold showers, ice water face dunks, ice vests, keeping the temperature low at home, cold water dips, all can help to activate BAT. I finish off every shower with about 1-2 minutes of cold water.

Mild acute stress can activate BAT (think exercise) – “Stress could help activate brown fat”:

“Mild stress stimulates the activity and heat production by brown fat associated with raised cortisol, according to a study. Brown adipose tissue (BAT), also known as brown fat, is one of two types of fat found in humans and other mammals. Initially only attributed to babies and hibernating mammals, it was discovered in recent years that adults can have brown fat too. Its main function is to generate body heat by burning calories (opposed to white fat, which is a result of storing excess calories. People with a lower body mass index (BMI) therefore have a higher amount of brown fat.”

Also read about how exercise (a form of stress) increases BAT by increasing production of irisin, a hormone that increases BAT, and activates BAT by activating PGC-1 Alpha – “Supercharging Brown Fat to Battle Obesity – Why turning down the thermostat could help win the battle of the bulge”:

“In a 2012 study, six men remained inactive for three hours while wearing a cold suit that circulated water with a temperature of 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit over their skin—cold enough to lower their body temperature without causing too much shivering. That way the researchers could be sure that most of the extra calories burned during those three hours were expended by brown fat cells rather than quivering muscles.”

“Recent experiments have also revealed that brown fat’s benefits go far beyond burning calories. A 2011 study using mice found that brown fat can fuel itself with triglycerides taken from the bloodstream—exactly the kind of fatty molecules known to increase the chances of developing metabolic syndrome, a cluster of conditions that raises the risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Brown fat cells also draw sugar molecules from the blood, which could help lower the risk for type 2 diabetes; chronically high levels of blood glucose wreak havoc on the body’s ability to manage those levels in the first place, which in turn sets the stage for diabetes.”

“Don’t fancy low temperatures? Investigators have identified several molecules that may be able to stimulate such “browning” of white fat without the need for cold. Two 2012 studies showed that a hormone called irisin, which is released from muscle cells after exercise, coaxes white fat to behave like brown fat. In one of these studies, researchers injected mice with a gene that tripled the levels of the hormone in the blood of mice that were obese and had dangerously high amounts of sugar in their bloodstream. The mice lost weight and regained control of their glucose levels in just 10 days.

Exercise has also been shown to increase UCP1 activity in brown fat, making it more active.”

Takeaway: Regular exercise, specifically HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) and resistance training, are the best ways to increase BAT production and BAT activation, and for weight loss & better blood sugar/insulin regulation.

BAT can also be activated by eating hot peppers or taking a capsinoid supplement – “Nonpungent capsaicin analogs (capsinoids) increase energy expenditure through the activation of brown adipose tissue in humans”:

“Capsinoid ingestion increases EE (energy expenditure) through the activation of BAT in humans.”

Takeaway – eating spicy foods or taking a capsaicin supplement (the active ingredient in hot peppers) can help you build and activate BAT stores and help you lose weight.  CAUTION: NOT RECOMMENDED FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH PEPTIC ULCERS, GASTRITIS, INFLAMMATORY BOWEL CONDITIONS OR HIATAL HERNIAS.

And of course, ketogenic diets and exogenous ketone supplements have shown to activate brown fat stores:

“Here we discuss the unexpected observation that feeding an ester of ketone bodies to the mouse, which increases blood ketone body concentrations, results in an activation of brown fat. The mechanism of this activation of brown fat is similar to that occurring from cold exposure in that cyclic adenosine monophosphate (AMP) levels are increased as are levels of the transcription factor cyclic AMP-responsive element-binding protein, which is also increased by ketone ester feeding. Other effects of feeding ketone esters, in addition to their ability to induce brown fat, are discussed such as their ability to overcome certain aspects of insulin resistance and to ameliorate the accumulation of amyloid and phosphorylated tau protein in brain, and improve cognitive function, in a triple transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease.”

This study showed the same thing with a ketogenic diet:

“These results demonstrate that a KD can also increase BAT mitochondrial size and protein levels.”

Takeaway – a low carb ketogenic diet and/or exogenous ketone supplementation can activate brown fat.  Click here to purchase the ketone supplements I use and recommend.

Leave a comment below if you’ve had any experience with these strategies for BAT production and activation!

In health,

Rick Gold

The Dose Makes the Poison – Just Not in the REAL WORLD!

They say “the dose makes the poison”. And this is true! But it’s also a brilliant way to cover up a scandal and hide the REAL truth.

For instance, maybe the amount of sugar in a teaspoon of honey won’t make you sick. Heck, maybe it’s even good for you at that dose!

But does anyone really stop at one teaspoon of honey per day? What if in addition to that teaspoon of honey, you were also putting sugar in your coffee, drinking 2 cans of soda, eating pizza, muffins, bread, pasta, rice, and ice cream every day? Now the dose certainly is poisonous. We know what the outcome of this. It’s called metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

What if you were injected with aluminum or mercury from one vaccine. It’s totally possible that your body might be able to clear that adjuvant with no problems. But what if you were given 5-10 doses of vaccines in one sitting? Could this pose a problem in certain people? You bet! Are there even any studies that show the safety of the levels of aluminum and mercury with the current vaccine schedule? Any studies that show how effectively someone with an MTHFR mutation or mitochondrial dysfunctional can clear these adjuvants?

What if you took one dose of a painkiller…your body might be able to safely handle it. But what if you were taking that painkiller along with a medicine cabinet full of other drugs to lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, help with insomnia, help with depression, and help with acid reflux? Have any studies been done that show the synergistic effect or the interplay between these various medications?

What if you eat some food that has pesticides in it. Your body might be able to clear that no problem if it’s an isolated incident. But what if you’re eating foods loaded with pesticides every day 3-5 times per day? How fast can your liver clear that toxicity? What if, besides eating pesticide ridden food, you’re also eating foods with MSG, food dyes, nitrates, and other chemical additives? What if you’re also ingesting and absorbing chemicals from your water, your carpets, your cookware, your plastic bottles, your food storage containers, your car, your cleaning products, your personal care products, and the air you breathe?

What if every person’s genetics and environment is different? What if person A has genetic mutations that make them poor methylators and detoxifiers while others don’t have that gene? What if one person’s environment exposes them to a massive amount of electromagnetic fields and dirty electricity while the next person not so much? What if one person spends time outdoors at the beach and in the ocean for 40% of their life while another lives on the 30th floor of a crowded building in a crowded city and almost never connects with the earth’s energies or the sun? What if one person gets to sleep early and often and sleeps well every night while the other experiences insomnia.

Do you think these people would all be in the same shape? Would all of their detoxification pathways and immune systems be able to handle the same amount of chemicals, pills, vaccines, or sugar?

Do you think that what is a safe dose for one person might be unsafe for the next?

I’m talking here about the concept of allostatic load, and for every person that differs.

So, does the dose make the poison? Yes it absolutely does, and in a vacuüm, you can judge the amount of poison in one dose of any given substance that would cross the threshold of health and cause harm.

But when you combine all the factors above, do we REALLY know what dosage makes the poison for every one of us? Or is it a much more individualized concept?

Could that be why over 100,000 Americans die each year from taking prescription drugs as properly prescribed to them by their docs despite all the pharmaceutical-funded studies showing the safety of each drug in a vacuüm?

Could that be why so many children are injured by vaccines despite pharmaceutical-funded studies showing the safety for each individual vaccine?

Could that be why diabetes is set to bankrupt our healthcare system despite the FDA putting a GRAS label on most of the individual ingredients in sugar laden, processed foods?

Do you think that one-size-fits-all recommendations work for you and your individual health?  I think that what it all comes down to is that in order for you to achieve optimal health and keep you and your family safe, you need to educate yourself on the bell curve of what works for most of the population but you also need to take the time and make the effort to understand whether you or your family falls inside or outside of that bell curve.  Because if you fall outside of it, don’t expect to have the same reaction to any given food, drug, or chemical that people inside the middle of that bell curve have.  We all need to spend more time understanding who we are as individuals and finding out what works for US individually.  That, imo, is the only way to achieve optimal health!

#CriticalThinkingNeeded

Rick Gold is the President & Founder of Gold Functional Wellness, Inc.  Rick is a certified FDN & Functional Wellness Practitioner and is well-versed in the concepts of functional medicine.  Working with clients locally in South Florida and around the world, Rick helps his clients identify and eliminate many of the underlying causes of their symptoms, with a specialization in gut health and circadian rhythms.

For most of his adult life, Rick suffered from 24/7/365 allergies, frequent colds and sinus infections, indigestion, heartburn, GERD, stomach and joint pain.  He was able to find temporary relief using conventional medicine doctors, but the conventional medicine route never identified or fixed the underlying causes of his health issues.  

Rick used functional lab testing and lifestyle changes to vastly improve his health.  Dietary and other lifestyle modifications essentially reversed most of his health challenges which are now a distant memory.  It inspired him to study and acquire his FDN certification and he now guides clients to better health and disease prevention for a living. 

Rick’s work is extremely personal to him.  He cares deeply about his clients and spends ample time with them to understand their health challenges, empathize with their pain, and the challenges they face in trying to heal.  He is very attune to their needs, and dedicates himself to helping them improve their emotional and physical health through the concepts and philosophies of functional medicine.

Click here to schedule an initial 15-minute phone consultation with Rick.

Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of the author, unless otherwise noted. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of the author. Rick is not a doctor, nutritionist, or dietitian and he does not claim to diagnose, treat, or cure disease.

Announcements: my new e-book & online store launched

Hi all –

I’m very excited to announce that I have finished writing and published my first book on Amazon.com!  The book is titled “A Definitive Guide to Gut Bacteria & Probiotics”.  As the title suggests, the book is meant for health practitioners or for anyone who might be interested in understanding what gut bacteria is, why it’s so important to our health, the various methods used for positively influencing gut bacteria, reliable and effective brands of probiotics, and proper dosing for maximum therapeutic outcomes.

A few reviews have trickled in for the book and, so far, and they are all positive.

I’ve also launched an online store which makes it easier than ever for new and existing clients to purchase lab packages and other products (like my new book) via secure credit card transaction with the click of a button directly from my website.

Below is an excerpt from the book.  If you’d like to read more, you can buy a copy of the book by clicking on it below (it’s only $2.99…less than the price of a Starbucks coffee)
Order Online
  A Definitive guide to gut bacteriaWe’ve all heard about probiotics or “beneficial gut bacteria”.  We all know that they are good for us.  But what are they?  What are the different types of probiotics and what functions do they perform in our bodies?  What happens when we have imbalances in our gut bacteria?  How do we fix it?  Is it as simple as eating yogurt? As it turns out, science is just now starting to catch up with the massive importance that probiotics have in determining our health, our weight, our moods, and just about every bodily function one can think of! In this guide, we will explore the following:

What are probiotics?

The benefits of supplementing with probiotics.

Who should supplement with probiotics?

The causes of gut dysbiosis (imbalanced gut bacteria).

Symptoms of dysbiosis.

Information about the various strains of commonly used probiotics.

Scientific studies on probiotics.

Tips for balancing/optimizing your gut bacteria.

Suggestions on quality brands of probiotic supplements.

That’s all for today, folks!

Thanks

Rick

Rick Gold, Functional Wellness, FDN Practitioner
Gold Functional Wellness, Inc.

Website: www.GoldFunctionalWellness.com

Book a consult: http://www.snapappointments.com/listing/38C

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GoldFunctionalWellness

Follow me on Twitter: @RickGoldFDN

Email: Rick@GoldFunctionalWellness.com

The key to vibrant health that modern medicine overlooks.

short history of medicineModern medicine has its strong points, especially when we consider how effectively it treats and heals acute, life-threatening injuries or conditions.  If you are badly injured in a car accident, having a heart attack, stroke or other acute symptoms of that nature, EMS, first responders and emergency room staff can literally be the difference between life and death for you.  They are a godsend!  Modern medicine is also adept at early diagnosis of chronic diseases such as CVD and cancer.  

But what does modern medicine do for us to help us build our health and stay healthy to avoid those chronic diseases and to live a long, happy and healthy life?  Let’s take a look at some statistics: 

As a nation, we are sicker than ever. We’re suffering from record levels of autoimmune disorders, cancer, heart disease, alzheimer’s, autism & digestive ailments like GERD & IBS:

 

WHY IS THIS HAPPENING, DESPITE ALL OF THE ADVANCES IN MODERN MEDICINE OVER THE LAST CENTURY? 

 

It is fair to say that if you go to a doctor for treatment these days you are going to experience one or a combination of the following 5 outcomes:

  1. A non-diagnosis – aka they have no clue what is wrong with you and it’s “likely in your head”.  
  2. A diagnosis and prescription drugs.
  3. A diagnosis and surgery.
  4. A diagnosis and chemo.
  5. A diagnosis and radiation.  

Pills, surgery, chemo, radiation.   That is the way modern medicine attacks our health issues today.  Agreed?

I’m not saying that this approach is ALWAYS bad.  sometimes pills are necessary.  Sometimes surgery is necessary (again, especially in acute emergency situations).  However, there are 2 problems with this method:

  1. None of those options seek to discover and eliminate the cause of your symptoms.  They only seek to squash the symptoms.  For instance, if you have chronic sinus infections you’ll be prescribed an antibiotic like augmentin.  It will kill the infection.  But does it find and eliminate the root cause of why your immune system is compromised?  Does it take your diet and lifestyle into account and find out what areas of your body are malfunctioning or out of balance, and create a lifestyle reboot of sorts to help restore balance and function?  Not even close.  Thus, you will just keep getting sicker and sicker as your body continues down the road of malfunction while only addressing symptoms and not the underlying cause.
  2. Pills, chemo, & radiation involve some of the most toxic substances we can put in our bodies.  From heavy metals to many pharmaceutical drugs and chemo/radiation, these toxins serve to further disrupt our bodies’ normal function while alleviating symptoms.  Surgery many times removes body parts that are necessary for optimal bodily function. 

Antibiotics, for instance, kill an infection, but also are known to cause increased intestinal permeability and gut dysbiosis, both of which are intimately connected with onset of autoimmune conditions.  It also leads to food sensitivities, as a widening of the tight junctures in the small intestine that are supposed to keep I digested food particles out of the blood stream are now letting them through.  What follows is an immune reaction and the creation of antibodies against those food particles.  So, kill the infection, destroy the lining of your small intestine, and cause food sensitivities.  Good trade-off?   I don’t think so…

The same goes for prescription AND OTC painkillersstatin drugs, antacids, and immune suppressing drugs.  They all have one key element in common:  They treat the symptoms and ignore the causes.

Symptoms don’t just appear out of nowhere.  Our bodies are brilliant organisms that do a terrific job of shifting and adapting to constant insults and assaults on their cellular function.  Over time, the burden of these chronic insults from diet, lack of sleep, stress, lack of exercise, and the thousands of chemicals, toxic metals, pesticides and preservatives take a toll on our bodies and impairs functionality at the cellular level.  It might take years of functional loss at this level before symptoms ever even appear.  

So, if you are one of those people proudly burning the candle at both ends and bragging to friends and family about how much you are able to take on and how productive you are on such little sleep and with intense stress levels (you know who you are), the message to you is: you are human, and it will catch up to you.  One day, one or more symptoms will smack you over the head like a sledgehammer and you’ll think “woah…what is this?  I am healthy!  One day I’m fine and the next day this?  What gives???”  That’s because your body was silently losing function at the cellular level for years before your symptoms appeared.  And that happened because you weren’t taking care of it properly.  

You had too many holes popping up in your ship and you finally ran out of material to plug the holes!  

 

Plugging leaksAnd now your ship is starting to sink.  Now here is the question:  Do you just need more plugs, or do you want to find out what is causing the holes and eliminate that?  Because the answer to that question is the ultimate determinant between vibrant health and simply surviving for the rest of your life on a cabinet full of pharmaceutical drugs or surgeries.  

This is the type of stuff that I work on with my clients: implementing a total paradigm shift in the way they view their health and especially their symptoms.  Symptoms are not just a nuisance that need to go away.  They are our bodies way of communicating to us that something is malfunctioning and needs our attention.  Once we start viewing symptoms in that way we start to ask “why?”   Why am I feeling this symptom?  What is my body trying to tell me?   And then we can begin our detective work and find the cause.  

And the cause usually has to do with poor diet, poor sleep, poor exercise habits, poor mechanisms or protocols to cope with external and internal stressors, and a lack of properly supporting bodily function through intelligent supplementation.  Unfortunately, this holistic view of the body and lifestyle as a major factor in disease prevention and building health is vastly overlooked by the conventional medical community.

If you are interested in building your overall health, restoring optimal function, energy and vitality to your body, this is where you need to start.  Change your perception of what health is and what symptoms are, and change your life!  

I hope this was helpful and if you have any further interest in this topic you can always fill out the contact form on my site OR schedule a FREE consultation with me.  

Thanks, 

Rick Gold, Functional Wellness, FDN Practitioner
Gold Functional Wellness, Inc.

Website: www.GoldFunctionalWellness.com

Book a consult: http://www.snapappointments.com/listing/38C

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GoldFunctionalWellness

Follow me on Twitter: @RickGoldFWP

Email: Rick@GoldFunctionalWellness.com

 

Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of the author, unless otherwise noted.  The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of the author.  Rick is not a doctor, nutritionist, or dietitian and he does not claim to diagnose, treat, or cure disease.