Nutrigenomics: Understanding the Link between Food and Genes, Part 1

Close up image of human hand holding test tube.

You and two friends decided to try a ketogenic diet because you read that this type of high-fat, low-carb approach has been scientifically proven to help people lose weight safely and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.

After three months on the diet, one of your friends has lost 15 pounds and feels great. You haven’t gained or lost a pound. Your other friend has actually gained five pounds and is becoming depressed.

How is it possible that three people could respond so differently to the same diet? Nutrigenomics often has the answer.  Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

How to Identify Nutritional Imbalances and Toxicities

laboratory technician holding a blood tube testBecause there’s no license for nutrition in New Jersey, a lot of different people make nutritional recommendations, from those with degrees in nutrition to dietitians and gym owners. In many doctor’s offices, “nutrition” amounts to a brief patient history and stepping on a scale.

If your weight is appropriate, you’re told everything is fine. If you’re overweight, you’re told to go on a certain diet and take a few supplements. The problem is, this approach typically fails to identify and address the root cause of nutritional imbalances, genetic issues, and conditions like intestinal permeability.

When you go to the doctor, it’s their job to tell you what’s wrong with you – the root cause, not the symptom – and what you should do about it. If you took your car to the shop because it was making a weird noise, the mechanic wouldn’t just give you ear plugs to block out the noise. They’d find out what was causing the noise and fix it at the source. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

New Study Finds Pesticides in Nearly 70% of Non-Organic Produce

Tractor spraying wheat field with sprayerIf there was ever a case for buying organic foods and supporting local farmers and farm markets, this is it.

Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes its Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. This report is based on the analysis of tests performed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture on more than 38,800 non-organic produce samples.

This year’s report revealed that nearly 70 percent of samples of conventionally grown produce were contaminated with 230 different pesticides and pesticide breakdown products.

Here is the Dirty Dozen list of the most contaminated produce, according to the EWG report: Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Nutrigenomics: Understanding How Food Affects Our Genes

Nutrigenomics: genesIt’s not uncommon for people to chalk up poor health to genetics. Occurrences of heart disease, stroke, obesity, cancer, Alzheimer’s and other conditions are often viewed as inevitable by people with a family history of those conditions. It runs in the family.

The fact is, chronic illness is far more likely to be caused by the choices you make – physically, psychologically and nutritionally – than the genes you’re born with. Not only that, but it’s possible that the genes you’re born with can be changed by the food you eat.

What Is Nutrigenomics?

Nutrigenomics is the scientific study of how specific nutrients interact with genes and influence genetic behavior.

For example, nutrigenomics can tell us why one person can eat a high fat diet without having cholesterol issues, while another person with the same eating habits sees their cholesterol levels go through the roof. It can tell you why you struggle to lose weight even though you’re making what you believe are smart lifestyle choices. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Big Food Manufacturers: What We’re Up Against

Big Food Manufacturers: What We’re Up AgainstIf you’ve been treated by me, attended one of my presentations, or read articles on this blog, you’ve heard me express my frustration, to put it mildly, with the food industry. Aisle after aisle at the average grocery store is filled with “food” that has little or no nutritional value and contributes to the chronic illness epidemic in our country.

That’s why I talk about the importance of doing your homework and becoming educated about the food you put into your body – what the ingredients are, where it was grown or produced, how it was processed, what it might have been exposed to, etc.

By and large, the people I encounter, both in clinical practice and during speaking engagements, want to do the right thing. They want to make better choices for themselves and their families. They want to choose healthy, nutritious foods.

Unfortunately, big food manufacturers are making it difficult for well-intentioned adults and children to make good choices. Here are a couple frightening examples of what we’re up against. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

What Is Kombucha, and What Makes It Healthy?

KombuchaWalk through the aisles of a grocery or health food store, or visit a trendy coffee shop or restaurant, and you’re likely to find kombucha tea. Some establishments promote kombucha as a healthy alternative to soda because of its sweet flavor and fizziness. You can even buy kombucha home brewing kits.

But what exactly is kombucha, and what is it about kombucha that makes it healthy?

Kombucha originated in the Far East about 2,000 years ago. Typically consumed as a tea, kombucha is a fermented drink with black or green tea, sugar, probiotic bacteria and yeast, and prebiotics (microcellulose).

Kombucha tea is made by combining a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY) with sugar and tea and allowing it to ferment. After fermentation, kombucha becomes carbonated and contains vinegar, B vitamins, and short chain fatty acids (SCFAs), which serve as a nutrition source for cells in the colon. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Beware of Fake Organics from Overseas

chalk board with vegetables

I’ve written previously about the confusion surrounding supposedly organic foods. Big food companies are capitalizing on the organic movement by using the word “organic” in their marketing.

Because these companies have proven for decades that we can’t trust them to tell us what’s in their foods in a clear, transparent way, here’s a quick primer on organic labeling requirements from the USDA National Organic Program (NOP):

  • “100% Organic”: Must contain only organically produced ingredients other than water and salt.
  • “Organic”: Must contain at least 95 percent organic ingredients.
  • “Made with Organic Ingredients”: Must contain at least 70 percent organic ingredients and list up to three organic ingredients.

Any product with less than 70 percent organic ingredients cannot use the term “organic” except to identify specific organic ingredients. Here is the official definition of organic food from the USDA NOP:

Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. Organic meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones. Organic food is produced without using most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge; bioengineering; or ionizing radiation. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Breaking Free from Decades of Frustration: A NHC Success Story

Proodian healthcare Patient Success StoryTo protect the patient’s privacy, we’ll refer to her as Mary.

Mary, age 56, came to Natural Healthcare Center with what she called “the frustration of a lifetime.” She had been diagnosed with iron deficiency anemia more than 30 years earlier. Mary had tried infusions, medication and supplementation with no success, and nobody could figure out why.

Mary had been living with chronic fatigue for years. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) was causing constipation, bloating and stomach pain. She suffered from hypothyroidism, acid reflux, cold intolerance, hypoglycemic symptoms, and dizziness. She even had miscarriages. Mary was taking prescription medication for iron deficiency, acid reflux and hypothyroidism.

Mary knew there was a history of celiac disease in her family. She never tested positive for it, so her doctors in the conventional medicine community felt gluten wasn’t the cause of her anemia. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

What Kills More People than Auto Accidents, Terrorists and Alzheimer’s Combined?

Obese business woman walking across a city streetWe’ve heard reports in recent years that sales of soda are down, and more people are drinking water. People are paying closer attention to food labels and choosing organic products. The “farm to table” movement is picking up steam. More people are exploring chiropractic, yoga and massage therapy and trying to reduce their reliance on medication.

Then we got hit with a major dose of reality. According to a report from the National Center for Health Statistics, nearly four in 10 adults and nearly two in 10 children are obese in the U.S. Obesity rates are highest among minorities. 47 percent of Hispanic adults and 46.8 of “non-Hispanic black” adults are obese. The study was based on body-mass index of 30 or higher being considered obese.

Obesity at an all-time high in our country. The federal government’s Healthy People 2020 initiative aims to reduce obesity rates to 30.5 percent for adults and 14.5 percent for children by 2020. Chances of these goals being achieved are slim.

Why is this such a big deal? A recent study funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that obesity contributed to 7 percent of all deaths around the world in 2015. Top causes of death involving obesity were heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease and various forms of cancer. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Curcumin: The Natural Anti-Inflammatory Supplement

turmeric powder and capsule and roots curcumin on wooden plateSociety is finally starting to realize that medication isn’t the only option for treating any number of conditions. There are substances that can be consumed, whether in food or supplement form, that are 100 percent natural, non-addictive, non-narcotic and have no side effects.

Curcumin is a prime example.

Curcumin is a chemical found in the bright yellow pigment of turmeric, which is part of the ginger family and made from the Curcuma longa plant. Curcumin is the most active ingredient in turmeric, which is also the main spice in curry.

In Indian culture, curcumin has been recognized as a healing agent for centuries and is part of traditional Ayurvedic medicine. I use curcumin as an anti-inflammatory herbal supplement in clinical practice every day. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Think Bottled Water Is Healthy? Not So Fast.

Bottle. Industrial production of plastic pet bottles. Factory line for manufacturing polyethylene bottles. Years ago, it started to become trendy to drink bottled water. In restaurants, I see people specify that they want bottled water, not tap water. In fact, soda sales in the U.S. have dropped for 12 consecutive quarters as more people have turned to bottled water and healthier beverages, according to a report from Beverage Digest.

While I’m happy to see that fewer people are drinking soda, I’m disturbed by the fact that people are still drinking anything from plastic bottles, including water.

Most water bottles are made from very cheap plastic. These kinds of plastics contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), particularly phthalates, which are banned in the European Union but legal in the U.S. Bisphenol A (BPA) is another common EDC found in tin food cans, plastic containers and cosmetics.

Also called xenoestrogens, EDCs affect the endocrine tissues that produce hormones They mimic natural hormones such as estrogen and androgen and bind to receptors in human cells, which prevents the body’s natural hormones from doing so. As a result, the body is unable to properly respond to stress and injury, regulate energy, and control growth and development.

This affects everyone – men, women, children and even unborn babies. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

The Silent Liver Disease Epidemic that Nobody Is Talking About

Fatty Liver Disease You can’t live without your liver. The liver sits below your rib cage to the right of your abdomen and has the critical job of ridding the human body of toxic substances.

Liver disease can be genetic. It can also be caused by viral infections caused by Hepatitis A, B and C, and by overuse of pain killers like acetaminophen. Most people associate liver disease with alcoholism, which causes scarring and cirrhosis of the liver.

Fortunately, the liver is one of the few organs in the body that can replace damaged tissue with new cells instead of just scar tissue. Of course, if the liver continues to be overwhelmed by toxic substances, like alcohol and fast food, it won’t be able to repair itself. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Are Bogus Food Marketing Claims Finally Losing Steam?

Food MarketingIf you see “organic” in a product label, there’s a good chance it’s not organic. If you see “natural” in a product label, there’s an excellent chance it’s anything but natural.

These are just a couple of issues that the Federal Trade Commission seems to have on its radar as a crackdown on bogus marketing claims may finally be underway. In 2016, false advertising suits challenged marketing claims made my makers of oatmeal, fruit juices, deli meat and other products, according to Advertising Age.

In fact, Quaker Oats was sued when pesticides were found in its oatmeal even though it was marketed as “100% natural.” The lawsuit says the claim was false and misleading. Gee, you think so? Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Had Enough of GMOs? Wait ‘Til You Hear About Gene Editing.

Gene Editing Food manufacturers have been using genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, for years. A GMO is a plant, animal or other organism that had its genes modified in a science lab, typically by having the genes from another organism’s DNA artificially forced into it. This is usually done to make crops resistant to herbicides and pests and enable crops to produce their own pesticide.

More than 35 countries have banned genetically modified crops and more than 60 countries require GMO labeling on food products. The U.S. finally got around to requiring GMO labeling in 2016. Sadly, the vast majority of crops grown in our country are GMOs and are present in most processed foods. Soy, corn, cotton, canola and sugar beets are common examples of genetically modified crops.

There is no health benefit, but GMOs have been linked to infertility, immune problems and gastrointestinal issues. Actually, the Alliance for Natural Health recently reported that studies have shown that GMOs with Monsanto’s Roundup could eat holes in your stomach. By the way, this product has also been linked to liver and kidney problems, fertility issues, tumors, fatigue, paralysis and allergic reactions. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

The Only Way to Stop the Unhealthy Blame Game

billion-dollar food companies play the blame game as a way to run up profitsWhen I hear big food manufacturers and lobbyists deflecting responsibility for the chronic disease epidemic around the world, I’m often reminded of childish playground conflicts. You know, the almost instinctive responses from kids when they’re busted for doing something they know is wrong.

I didn’t do it! It wasn’t my fault! He started it! She made me do it!

With kids, it can be kind of funny, at least when nobody gets hurt and the damage isn’t too severe. After all, kids will go to great lengths to avoid punishment, whether that means blaming someone else or trying not to get caught altogether.

When billion-dollar food companies play the blame game as a way to run up profits by selling unhealthy products that make people sick, there’s nothing funny about it. It’s tragic. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Don’t Make a Resolution. Make a Plan.

Don’t Make a Resolution. Make a Plan.Did you know the term “New Year’s Resolution” is actually in the dictionary?

According to Merriam-Webster, a New Year’s Resolution is a promise to do something differently in the new year.

The MacMillan Dictionary is a bit more specific. It says a New Year’s Resolution is a decision that you make on the first day of the year about the things that you intend to do or stop doing during that year.

There are a ton of surveys about top New Year’s Resolutions, mostly from companies trying to peddle their products and services. But the most popular resolutions always fall into three categories:

  • Losing weight and becoming healthier
  • Making or saving more money
  • Enjoying life to the fullest

All of these categories of “resolutions” have one thing in common. If you want to reach your goal, you need to do more than make a promise or a spur-of-the-moment decision.

You need a plan.

Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

A Reason to Celebrate, and My New Year’s Wish

Proodian Healthcare success storyAs another year comes to an end, I hope the notion that chronic disease is not preventable and reversible will also come to an end. If we’re going to achieve true healthcare reform and reduce costs, our nation must start wrapping its arms around an integrated approach to healthcare that focuses on prevention.

As I get ready to celebrate Christmas with my family, I’d like to celebrate the work and success of my colleague, business partner and dear friend, Dr. Oscar Coetzee, PhD. 10 years ago, Dr. Coetzee joined me at Natural Healthcare Center. Together, we continue to see the reversal of chronic illness every day. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Did You Know Every Chronic Illness Has a “Pre” Stage?

Chronic Illness warning signsAccording to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one out of every three adults – 86 million total – have prediabetes, also known as insulin resistance or Metabolic Syndrome. Of those 86 million, nine out of 10 don’t know they have prediabetes. 15-30 percent will develop type 2 diabetes within five years.

Type 2 diabetes isn’t the only form of chronic illness with a “pre” stage. It just happens to have a quantifiable diagnosis that’s known to lead to the more serious condition.

Precancerous cells can lead to cancer. Osteopenia refers to bone density that’s lower than normal but not quite low enough to be called osteoporosis. Being overweight can be the “pre” condition of obesity.

But just because a “pre” condition doesn’t have a formal name, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Blood pressure can be elevated without being classified as high blood pressure. Inflammation could be a precursor to osteoarthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, neuro-degenerative disorders and many more disorders. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

The Most Important Molecule in the Human Body that You’ve Never Heard Of

glutathioneRegular readers of my blog know I have enormous respect for Dr. Mark Hyman, one of the world’s foremost advocates of functional medicine and chairman of the Institute of Functional Medicine. I’d like to summarize an article written by Dr. Hyman and share important information about what he calls “the most important molecule you need to stay healthy and prevent disease.”

This molecule is called glutathione, which is produced naturally by the human liver. What makes glutathione special is sulfur. Sulfur is sticky, and free radicals and toxins stick to glutathione for that reason. Glutathione then carries them to bile and stool before they leave the body.

That’s why glutathione is the most important part of the detoxification system. It cools off free radicals and recycles other antioxidants. Research suggests that, by supporting immune function and controlling inflammation, high glutathione levels can reduce muscle damage, speed recovery time, improve strength and endurance, and switch metabolism to develop muscles instead of fat. Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.

Eggs Shift from Health Risk to Superfood

Eggs Shift from Health Risk to SuperfoodEarly last year, 40-year-old guidelines from the government related to the consumption of cholesterol were changed. Basically, Washington finally caught up to science in understanding that cholesterol in the food we eat does not have a significant impact on cholesterol levels in our blood.

Thanks to decades of ignorance, one of the healthiest, most budget-friendly food options has gotten a bad rap. Because the average large egg contains more than 200 milligrams of cholesterol, which is approximately two thirds of the recommended daily allowance, egg consumption was incorrectly linked to heart disease.

Fortunately, the public is becoming educated about the myths and realities of cholesterol, and eggs are receiving long overdue recognition as a source of:

  • Protein
  • Vitamins A, D, B6 and B12
  • Minerals, including iron, calcium, folate, phosphorus, selenium and zinc
  • Choline, which promotes normal cell activity, liver function, and nutrient movement in the body
  • Amino acids
  • Omega-3 fatty acids, which lower triglycerides to reduce the risk of heart disease
  • Antioxidants, including lutein and zeaxanthin

Continue reading

About Dr. James Proodian

Dr. James Proodian is an accomplished chiropractic physician, health educator, and professional public speaker who founded Proodian Healthcare Family of Companies to help people feel better, function better, and live longer. His expertise is in identifying clinical imbalances and restoring the body to health and functionality. Contact: jproodian@naturalhc.com or (732) 222‑2219.