The Integrative Healthcare Symposium 2015

The 2015 Integrative Healthcare Symposium just took place at the Hilton Hotel in New York City from February 19 th-22 nd. The conference brought together some of the top experts in medical fields such as Pediatric Exposure to Toxins, Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

The talk I was particularly looking forward to was the one by Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, a well-known expert on Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and the author of From Fatigued to Fantastic! I have been in contact with Dr. Teitelbaum in the past and am a big fan of his webinars, but attending a live performance was on a whole other level.

“Dr. T.”, as he refers to himself, was very charismatic and extremely funny as he shared his wisdom with the audience on how to manage the complicated patients suffering from Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue. He followed his SHINE protocol , which is an acronym that stands for Sleep, Hormones, Infections/Immunity, Nutrition and Exercise.

Here are some of the pearls of wisdom he shared on each topic.

SLEEP

Get lots of sleep! It sounds obvious but Dr. Teitelbaum. made a good point. In the early 1900’s before electricity was widespread, and before most homes were illuminated with light bulbs, the average sleep time was 9 hours! Today the amount of sleep most of us gets is nowhere near that.

Dr. T. emphasized how important “good” sleep is for the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue patient. They not only need 9 to 10 hours of sleep, they also need to have a deep sleep. The key stages of deep sleep are stages 3 and 4. This is when you get the most restorative sleep.

Dr. Teitelbaum strongly believes that patients with Fibromyalgia and Fatigue can safely use natural ways to get into this sleep pattern. He mentioned herbs that can be very effective in aiding sleep, such as valerian root. He is also a big believer in sleep preparation optimization.

An example of sleep preparation optimization is taking a nice warm bath with Epson salts (2 packets) to relax your muscles. You could also use Lavender oil in the bath to calm you before sleep – lavender is a very calming and relaxing scent that can really aid the sleeping process.

While Dr. T. is not adverse at all to sleep medications, he feels these natural remedies are way underutilized.

HORMONES

Dr. T. was adamant that many Fibromyalgia and Fatigue patients have a depletion of crucial hormones that impact their recovery. Doctors tend to rely on blood tests to regulate hormones, but this is not enough because blood testing doesn’t reflect the clinical story.

Quite often, doctors will look at a Fibromyalgia or Fatigue patient’s thyroid hormone and say “everything is in the normal range”, but this isn’t the correct way to treat the patient. By treating patients this way you are simply treating the numbers, and you know what they say – “Don’t treat the numbers, treat the patient!”

INFECTIONS/IMMUNITY

Dr. T. feels Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue patients are probably immune dysfunctional and prone to chronic infections. He put special emphasis on treating Candida imbalance and strongly advised using anti-fungals to clear the body of an overgrowth of yeast and restore immune balance.

As an immunologist that treats many Candida patients, I completely agree. At the Mitchell Medical Group, we also treat our Candida, Fibromyalgia and Fatigue patients with diet, anti-fungal medications and natural immunotherapy drops to rebuild a patient’s immune balance.

NUTRITION

Nutrition is key and Dr. T. has written books on the dangers of sugar overload. He feels sugar is public enemy number one – and so does the American Association of Nutrition.

High levels of processed sugars in the diet, especially for Fibromyalgia and Fatigue patients, leads to patients “crashing and burning”. The sugar gives you that brief “high” where you feel energetic, but this is followed by a sustained low as your metabolism brings down that unsustainable sugar level and you feel exhausted for hours later.

The other key part of his nutrition plan is taking supplements. Dr. T. feels everyone, in particular ill patients need more vitamins and specific nutrients to get their metabolism going.

He is a big believer in keeping your “pill count” down, and I completely agree. A patient’s stomach has to work overtime if it’s digesting 20 different pills, so Dr. Teitelbaum’s solution is to drink these supplements in a powder form that combines all of the key ones. The perfect combination is his Energy Revitalization Formula that is available on his website (a little FYI: Dr. T donates all proceeds from his take to charity!).

EXERCISE

Dr. Teitelbaum didn’t have much time to speak about exercise for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue, but his main point is that you should get exercise and the best way is to do something you like, whether it’s swimming, walking or yoga. The key is to listen to your body and not overdo it.

The 2015 Integrative Healthcare Symposium was a definite success, even just from the standpoint that thousands of health practitioners and the pubic attended. Years ago, you would be lucky if you could get ten people in a room to listen to these lectures, but not anymore. Integrative Healthcare is here to stay, so watch out big pharma!

- Dr. Dean Mitchell
Mitchell Medical Group, NYC

Categories: Integrative Health

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