Posts Tagged ‘nutritional’

Ritalin is a class 2 narcotic, just like cocaine


I often get caught up in working with clients that I forget to communicate to all of you what I’m up to these days.  I have a passion to help all individuals get healthy and children are at the top of my priorities.  Perhaps it’s because I’ve had success with my own child, with helping other parents and knowing that if we intervene now, children may have a long term prognosis that defies the odds.

Currently 3.5 million American children are diagnoses with ADHD and are being treated. The first line of “treatment” is a class 2 narcotic chemically known as methylphenidate; brand names are Ritalin, Concerta, Medikinet and Equasym.  Cocaine is also considered a class 2 narcotic.  All of these “treatments” pose a long-term risk of addiction, as the tolerance increases with time, so  does the dosage. 

Serious side effects include sudden death, seizures, an increase in diagnosis for developing bi-polar behaviors, new psychotic symptoms, etc.    Other non-serious side effects include sleep problems and loss of appetite (266 percent experienced the latter in a recent study).    Sleep problems and loss of appetite can result in increased “ADHD” behaviors: hyperactivity, lack of focus, anxiety, etc.  (Remember, parents there is no blood test for ADHD/ADD.  It’s based on a set of symptoms).

In other words, “treatment” may need to be an immediate plan, but is NOT a long term plan.  One must dig deeper to identify the source of these symptoms.  Dr. Charles Gant, a pioneer in functional medicine and one of my mentors refers to the symptoms of ADD as this:

Absolutely 100% of human beings, without exception, can be made to display the symptoms of inattentiveness by simply driving their brains into a chemical imbalance, either with enough of a toxin exposure (brain poisoning) and/or with enough of a nutritional deficiency (brain starvation).

So how do I assess chemical imbalances, brain poisoning and nutritional deficiencies?  I use functional testing, rather than guessing.  Functional testing assesses the performance of the brain, the levels of toxins, the ability of the body to detoxify (an essential piece) and nutritional deficiencies (that can result from poor digestion/absorption).  I won’t go into huge detail but here’s a recent example.

A parent approached me about their child’s symptoms.  ‘Getting going’ in the morning was just one area identified by the mother as an area of focus.  ‘Getting going’ potentially indicated a deficiency in dopamine.  Ritalin addresses dopamine deficiency. Through comprehensive testing I identified numerous deficiencies, three of them being vitamin c, b6 and folate.  ALL of these are considered co-factors to dopamine.  This means that the body CANNOT make dopamine without adequate levels of vitamin c, b6 and folate.   This child could not ‘get going’ because she wasn’t absorbing/assimilating the correct co-factors to MAKE dopamine.  

Here are other areas that you can begin supporting now:

  1.  Reduce as much as possible sugar.  It spikes blood sugar and creates chemical chaos in the brain.
  2. Support your child with cod liver oil (450mg of DHA minimum).   Fatty acid deficiency is associated with behavioral issues, hyperactivity and inability to focus. 
  3. Explore a true elimination diet or get tested for food sensitivities.
  4. Get them out exercising EVERY day.  Exercise has been demonstrated in numerous studies to reduce the behaviors associated.  In one study it was revealed that 26 minutes of physical activity each day helped to significantly reduce ADHD symptoms in grade-schoolers.
  5. Digestive health (gut-brain connection).  How the gut performs is how the brain performs.
  6. Keep your child away from food colorings, preservatives.

I know you have a lot on your plate, parents.  I’ve been there.  Dig deeper, get support in developing that long term plan.

Be well,




Do you suffer from nutritional deficiencies? Take the Quiz…

Nutritional Deficiencies

Discovering nutritional deficiencies is imperative in all health disorders.  I’ve blogged about nutritional needs and how deficiencies can lead to chronic inflammation and dis-ease.  Please read the blog here.  You can complete an online assessment for nutritional deficiencies here

Vitamin B12: Referred to as the energy vitamin. B12 deficiency- 40% of American population is B12 deficient. Known cause of central and peripheral nervous system damage. Vitamin B12 is vital for the formation of red blood cells, as well as for the proper functioning and health of nerve tissue. B12 plays an important role in the development of fatty sheaths referred to as myelin that protect the nerves of the central and peripheral nervous systems.

Experts who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of B12 deficiency, suggest treating all patients that are symptomatic and have B12 levels less than 450 pg/mL. They also recommend treating patients with normal B12, but elevated urinary methylmalonic acid (MMA), homocysteine and/or holotranscobalamin (other markers of B12 deficiency).

Magnesium: referred to as the relaxation mineral, nearly half of Americans are deficient in magnesium. This mineral is responsible for over 300 enzyme activities in the brain, bones and muscles. It helps muscles relax, cells produce energy and many other chemical reactions to occur.
Our diets our grossly depleted in magnesium beginning with our soil, sugar-laden diets and chronic stress that depletes our magnesium stores. Magnesium miracle.

Vitamin D: is actually a steroid hormone that is a neuromodulator of over 3,000 gene expressions. Vitamin D receptors are found in the brain, the central nervous system and spinal cord. Vitamin D plays a critical role in the elasticity of tight junctions in the intestinal tract and is a known deficiency in individuals on AED’s.

Zinc: “no zinc, no think”. Zinc is the most critically important mineral for immunity and in reducing inflammation, specifically brain inflammation. Zinc is used by more enzymes than any other mineral including activating digestive enzymes, removing heavy metal toxins and repairing DNA.

Fatty Acids: the brain is made primarily of fats, 60% of it being DHA and requires optimal fatty acids to function optimally. Fatty acids are responsible for the cells communication. Fatty Acids are mostly acquired from wild foods. Most Americans are deficient in fatty acids due to the “low-fat” craze and from refined fats and oils.

The most reliable form of determining nutritional deficiencies is lab work.  However, your findings in these assessments may offer you further insight and help you and your practitioner pursue additional testing and supplementation.

 Take the assessment here

Be well,


Nutritional Deficiencies Self-Assessment

Nutritional Deficiencies

Welcome to the Nutritional Deficiencies assessment.  This assessment does not determine if a deficiency definitely exists but does provide guidance and information to share with your practitioner.  Nutritional Deficiencies are necessary in identifying needs of an individual experiencing any type of health problem.

Please complete the assessment to the best that you can. If you experience 3 or more of a symptom you may be experiencing a deficiency.  If you experience 5 or more of a symptom related to the vitamin/hormone/fatty acid, please consult with your practitioner.  

The results will be sent to me.  You will receive a copy as well.

I’m trained as a functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner and will assist you with immune, digestive, detoxification, environmental stressors and neurotransmitters so be sure to add additional information that you think will be helpful.

You can reach me at the Contact Us page if you have any further questions.

Be well,


How to identify nutritional deficiencies…

Nutritional deficiencies are one of 9 areas of chronic inflammation (you can read more about them here) that I address with my clients.  It’s a difficult area to address specific nutrient deficiencies for a few reasons.  Identifying specific nutritional deficiencies can be become quite costly especially when ordering blood tests for each vitamin or mineral. Assessing by dosing and toleration is another approach, but one deficiency alone may not address a complex need for multiple nutritional supports.

I do offer self-assessments that are to completed by each client, on an as needed basis. These are helpful in targeting specific nutrients.  I’ve also used the Organic Acids Test to help identify not only nutritional deficiencies with B Vitamins but also assess bacterial and fungal infections, and depleted markers in detoxification, mitochondrial and neurotransmitters.  

But just recently I was introduced to a lab test that can detect a multitude of deficiencies.   The lab Spectracell offers a detailed assessment of an individuals highly targeted micronutrient deficiencies.  In F.D.N. my generalized approach is exploring H.I.D.D.E.N. stressors (hormone, immune, digestion, detoxification, environment and neurotransmitters).  All of the micronutrients listed below can lead to a malfunction of any or more of these systems. If you are suffering from any illness including: autoimmune disease, neurological disorders, fatigue, headaches, sleep disorders, digestive problems (to name a few) Spectracell is warranted.    Spectracell offers this test through a qualified practitioner (that’s me :)) . It’s at a great price too:$390 cash or $190 with proof of insurance.  

If you are interested in understanding nutritional deficiencies this may be a great addition to any healing protocol that you are working with.  

Vitamin A
Vitamin B1
Vitamin B2
Vitamin B3
Vitamin B6
Vitamin B12
Vitamin C
Vitamin D
Vitamin K
Alpha Lipoic Acid
Coenzyme Q10
for Total
Antioxidant Function

Immune Response Score

Fructose Sensitivity
Glucose-Insulin MetabolismFATTY ACIDS
Oleic Acid


Be well,