With the stress of the holidays behind us, it’s time to set our sights on what we want to improve in the new year, including putting our best face forward for 2023 and looking radiant and romantic on Valentine’s Day.
If you’d like to freshen your smile, restore your glow and recapture your youthful appearance, here are four treatments that I highly recommend.
1) Morpheus 8 RF Microneedling
The number one treatment for overall fresher, smoother, tighter appearing skin is the Morpheus 8 RF (radiofrequency) microneedling. This is a non-invasive device that delivers radiofrequency energy to the deep dermal layers of the skin to help remodel the overlying tissue from the inside out.
With little to no downtime, this is a wonderful treatment to sneak into your schedule that will substantially improve the texture, tone, and tightness of the skin. This treatment is great for reducing fullness of jowling in the lower face and double chin, improving pore size, reducing acne, smoothing deep set lines in the skin, and stimulating collagen production.
We recommend a total of 3 treatments one month apart for optimal improvement.
2) Lumecca IPL
The number two treatment for brighter, fresher skin this season is Lumecca IPL. IPL stands for intense pulse light. This is a popular non-invasive treatment technology used in aesthetic medicine for photo rejuvenation aimed at improving the appearance of sunspots, acne, stretch marks, spider veins, birthmarks, rosacea, melasma, and improving the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
This treatment is excellent for treating pigmented lesions, like reds and browns from the sun, prior surgeries or acne. Our Optimus platform is suitable for almost all skin types.
The procedure itself takes approximately 30 minutes with minimal downtime (you could get it over lunch!). The treated area will usually remain red or pink for about 4 - 6 hours after the procedures. This will feel similar to a mild sunburn.
For maximum improvement a total of four sessions is recommended with one maintenance session every six months. The treatments are typically done every four weeks.
One tried-and-true method for improving the smoothness of the skin and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles is the use of neurotoxins. Medications like Botox, Dysport and Xeomin are all FDA approved to decrease the force of contraction of the muscles and improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
After your treatment it takes about 2 weeks to notice the full results. This treatment allows your makeup to go on smoother, and gives you an overall more youthful looking appearance. Treatments are usually done every 3 months for optimal improvement.
When it comes to looking fresh and fabulous, it is hard to beat our bio-filler treatment. Derived from your own blood draw, spun down and heated, bio-filler is a versatile, safe, affordable and best of all, NATURAL way to improve areas of your face, from crepiness of the skin, adding volume, restoring that youthful, pinky appearance to lips and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
There is no downtime and results last about 6 months. We recommend a minimum of two treatments about 6 weeks apart.
I recently wrote an article sharing research that skin-to-soil contact “benefits our immune system, mental health, and longevity”. We’ll call that piece “Down and Dirty Part I” and you can read it right here.
While doing some additional research on the subject, I came across a new article that supports the healing power of dirt in a new way that I wanted to share with you.
As you know, I am a big believer in working with soil and gardening. It is one of my personal favorite passions and I find that it is relaxing, puts me in a good mood and I always feel better after working outside in nature.
But the benefits to getting your hands dirty aren’t relegated to adults. My 10-month-old grandson loves playing in the leaves and garden regularly. He smiles as soon as we put him on the ground. And there may be something to it other than having fun.
I’m linking to an article below that discusses what happened to children’s immune systems when daycares in Finland laid out a forest for children to play in. Since you already know the gist of the article, you can guess what the results were:
“Compared to other city kids who play in standard urban daycares with yards of pavement, tile, and gravel, 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds at these greened-up daycare centers in Finland showed increased T-cells and other important immune markers in their blood within 28 days.”
The implications of this article make one do some deep thought.
Can it be that working and getting dirty in the garden can help prevent autoimmune diseases? Can it boost our immunity?
The study indicates that it may be possible to modulate the immune system by relatively simple actions that change the living environment of young children in urban communities.
Could everyone working in the garden significantly reduce the incidence of new viral outbreaks? The answer to boosting our overall immunity might be in our own backyard!!
- Dr. P
Here is the article from Science Alert.
Also, while we’re on the subject of gardening, have you ever wondered if nightshade vegetables are healthy for you or not?
I certainly did.
You can read what I discovered in my blog post here: Nightshade Vegetables: Friend or Foe?
Did you know that your heart is the most hard-working muscle in your body and beats around 3 billion times over your lifetime?Pretty impressive, right? Your heart deserves as much support and attention as your other muscles to keep it strong and supple!
Here are some eye-opening stats that blew my mind, showing why giving a lot of love to your heart is essential: Every 40 seconds, someone in the US has a heart attack. And every 37 seconds in the US, someone dies from cardiovascular disease.
Pretty scary! But, there is good news; there are some simple things you can do starting TODAY to show your heart some love.
7 Smart, Simple Moves to Boost Heart Health
MANAGE YOUR WEIGHT
Managing weight is crucial because carrying excess fat on the body is unhealthy, regardless of body type. That's why your doctor is constantly bothering you about the importance of losing some weight.
It's one of the most no-brainer things that is much easier said than done but making sure you eat a balanced diet and get in some good exercise regularly can benefit you in multiple ways.
EATING HEART-HEALTHY FOODS
The easiest way to improve your heart health is to avoid junk food which means no more processed food. Please keep it simple, and add heart-healthy with Omega-3 fatty acids.
Start by eating more plants; an extra veggie or fruit every day! Some of the best heart-healthy foods include leafy greens, whole grains, berries, avocados, walnuts, and even dark chocolate! You'll want to cut down on saturated fat, eat more fiber, and add omega-3 fats from cold-water fish, like salmon, sardines, and mackerel, to your diet because they are rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Snack wisely; choose raw nuts instead of sugary, processed foods. Avoid high-calorie and sugary drinks like flavored lattes and soda. Drink water instead.
CUT DOWN ON SALT
We all love salt – who doesn't, right? But it's a silent killer, and we have no idea how it's affecting our bodies until we do an EKG. Too much sodium increases blood pressure because it holds excess fluid in the body. You are creating an added burden on the heart. Too much sodium can increase your risk of heart failure, stroke, osteoporosis, stomach cancer, and kidney disease. Saving your salt usage for cooking may help keep your ticker ticking long-term and also help decrease that salty craving.
ADD REGULAR EXERCISE TO YOUR WEEK
Getting active is so good for your heart; I cannot stress that enough. Leading a sedentary lifestyle can negatively impact your quality of life; it can bring on depression, weight gain, and dis-ease. Making time to move your body, just 30 minutes daily, can positively influence your overall health.
Getting the heart pumping with moderate-intensity exercises works all the muscles internally and externally. There are many great ways to get your movement in for the day, whether a Zumba session, cycling, or just taking regular walks.
STRESS REDUCTION AND GRATITUDE
Deep breathing, meditation, and tai-chi are stress-reducing practices that can help lower your blood pressure. Every day, give thanks; taking a few minutes to have gratitude is linked with better heart health.
STOP SMOKING AND CUT BACK ON ALCOHOL
Quitting smoking overall is the best thing you can do for your body and especially your heart. Smoking is one of the leading causes of coronary heart disease - and after a year of giving up smoking, your risk of having a heart attack falls to about half that of someone who smokes. Excessive alcohol consumption is linked to higher LDL cholesterol and triglyceride and leads to weight gain, significantly impacting heart function.
REGULAR DR. VISITS
Keeping up on regular doctor's visits and reporting any unusual symptoms that could be heart-related, especially if there's a family history of heart issues, is vital to
ensuring your heart is functioning 100% correctly.
There are many ways to ensure your heart is properly working, from getting active to eating the right foods. Making small changes is essential in keeping yourself healthy and is crucial to your overall well-being.
Sample Recipe: A Heart Healthy Morning Sundae!
Begin by starting small, maybe a sundae for breakfast? This sweet treat also makes a great snack.
Here's a quick rundown of why this breakfast sundae is so good for your heart:
Quinoa: Studies show that eating whole grains is associated with lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and a lower risk of heart disease.
Berries: Besides being filled with fiber, berries are rich in antioxidants that can protect you from oxidative stress and inflammation that contribute to heart disease.
Walnuts: First, walnuts have more omega-3 fatty acids than other nuts. And second, studies show that they can help reduce cholesterol and blood pressure. They also appear to be associated with a lower risk of heart disease.
Dates: The two types of fiber in Medjool dates can help lower cholesterol and blood pressure and control blood sugar levels.
Yogurt: A fermented food linked to healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Berry Delicious Breakfast Sundae
● ½ cup (85 grams) dry quinoa, rinsed and soaked for 10 minutes.
● ½ Tbsp coconut oil
● ½ Tbsp cinnamon
● ¼ tsp sea salt
● 1½-2 tsp maple syrup or honey, divided (to taste)
● ⅓ cup (40 grams) chopped walnuts
● 1 cup (150 grams) of plain Greek yogurt
● 1½ cups (225 grams) of fresh berries (your choice)
● 3 Medjool dates, chopped
Drain the soaked quinoa and pat it as dry as possible with clean paper towels.
Place the quinoa in a bowl with coconut oil, cinnamon, ¼ tsp sea salt, and ½ tsp maple syrup or honey.
Roast the quinoa mixture in a medium skillet over medium-low heat for about 8 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the walnuts about halfway through. These can burn quickly, so keep your eye on them -- they should be golden brown.
Let rest for about 5 minutes, and then assemble your sundaes.
Spread half of the yogurt in each dish, top with a drizzle of maple syrup or honey, add the berries and dates, and sprinkle the quinoa and walnut mixture over the top.
Start the day by showing your heart some love!
Schedule an Intro call with Rebecca today! and learn more about how to improve heart health.
As medical aesthetic treatments become widely de-stigmatized across all age groups and cultures, millennials are an important force behind the need for a more natural and regenerative approach to self care. Younger patients are doing more research than ever to find clean, natural products they’re willing to invest their money in. While they understand that regenerative aesthetic treatments are part of their overall wellness routines, they don’t want to use anything that may cause long term harm.
Fortunately, their prayers for a more natural and preventative approach to beauty and premature aging have finally been answered. A game changing turn in the field of aesthetics has led to the development of autologous regenerative techniques that harness our body's own healing, repair, and rejuvenation mechanisms. Two of the most popular and effective of these treatments include platelet-rich fibrin (PRF) injections and plasma gel bio-filler injections.
Platelet-rich fibrin is a game changer in the aesthetic industry, as it has zero additives and is an all natural derivative of your own blood. The result of this treatment is natural improvement of fine lines and wrinkles. This treatment is particularly effective for dark under eye circles, as well as fine lines and wrinkles around the crows feet and mouth. It is by far the safest and most natural aesthetic treatment to get brighter, younger looking skin without the use of synthetic hyaluronic acid fillers.
Plasma gel bio-filler is a regenerative aesthetic procedure that utilizes our body's own growth factors and stem cells to repair, restore and rejuvenate damaged or aging cells and to restore areas of volume loss. This is a natural alternative to synthetic fillers and is great for males and females of all ages. Similar to PRF, plasma gel bio-filler uses your body’s own ability to heal and repair aging and damaged cells.
Bio-filler is PRF that is heated to form a gelatinous substance from your own blood product that can be injected into the face anywhere a filler can be injected. Plasma gel bio-filler and platelet rich fibrin injections are a powerful way to look and feel better naturally.
These treatments are non-invasive, cost-effective, extremely safe, and very well tolerated by patients. There is no risk of immunogenic reactions as with traditional techniques that involve synthetic products and chemicals since it utilizes the patient’s own blood product.
I love PRF based treatments for several reasons:
Natural volume restoration and skin rejuvenation using your body’s own growth factors and stem cells with zero additive.
No immunological reactions as the bio-filler is 100% you.
Cost effective yielding 5 ml of bio-filler per session (compared to 1 ml per syringe of filler).
Unique processing of PRF produces the maximum amount of your body's own stem cells and growth factors.
Helps build collagen and improves the quality and texture of the skin.
Improves the appearance of dark under eye circles and bags under the eyes.
Improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around the crow's feet and mouth.
Make an appointment with Emily to discuss the best treatment plan for you.
I’m not a fan of the word “resolution” when it comes to making changes for the New Year because resolutions are finite. You make a resolution and then it ends. You either achieve it or you don’t. To me, this is why many people fail at their yearly “resolutions” – because they’re setting themselves up to fail.Instead of resolutions, I believe we need to insert intentionality and habit forming into our goals to make change. But I’m not talking about short-term change; I’m talking about long term, sustainable change.What I mean by this is that behind every choice is an intention. You choose to go for a run. Or not. Behind each of those choices is an intent. Your intention to run may be to get healthier. Your intention to not run may be because you’re feeling lazy. Or you’re too tired and you’ve prioritized resting over running. Either way, you chose not to run.When you make a resolution, you’re not choosing to perform all of the necessary habits needed to sustain change. You’re choosing a single thing.For many people, that single thing is to “get in shape”, but what usually happens is people are gung-ho about their new gym or new exercise for ten or twenty days and then they stop because they haven’t created any new habits to support their new activity.They also typically choose a generic goal (get in shape), rather than a specific goal that they would enjoy (golf two times per week).Using golfing as an example, if someone says they’re going to start golfing in the New Year, and they go four days in a row, they’ll likely get injured, be burnt out or they won’t have the stamina to continue the streak. It becomes an all or nothing proposition. Then that person goes four days without golfing, then five, then two weeks, and the cycle of a failed resolution continues.But what if this person came at their goal to golf more with the intention of forming a sustainable habit instead? In that case, perhaps they’d sign up for yoga twice a week to gain and maintain flexibility and relieve pain in their swing.And perhaps they’d revamp their diet to lose weight to take the pressure off aching knees and hips.And even though there’s a golf cart, perhaps this person chooses to walk two miles every other morning to build up their strength and stamina.And further, they choose to go to bed much earlier on nights before they golf to get adequate rest and sleep.Then they begin to take supplements and make other choices to improve their energy and health.At the end of all that, they commit to golfing just two days a week.Now, which plan sounds more sustainable?
The one where a person goes from never golfing to golfing January 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th?
Or the plan where you’ve holistically made changes to increase your enjoyment of golfing: increased mobility and flexibility, regular walks to stay in shape, new diet to keep weight off, pain management, better sleep and a reasonable golf schedule.
The former is the “resolution” path that nearly always fails. That latter is the path of intentionality with a much higher chance of success.In addition, the latter starts with your endgame in mind: a version of you that is happier and healthier and ready to play golf regularly, instead of the old you that isn’t prepared.
Whether you’re looking to take up golf, tennis, or even run a 10k, choose your plan with intention to create the sustainable change you need to not only achieve your goal, but to maintain the habits necessary to continue to improve.
Sign up with Carissa and work together to reach your health goals.
I have worn many hats during my career in medicine, from orthopedic surgeon to regenerative medicine doctor, and I believe that regenerative medicine techniques can help almost any medical condition - especially surgical recovery.
While many hospitals and facilities have Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) programs to deal with patients after a procedure, they typically follow standardized pathways for each phase of care (before, during and after surgery). The good news is that research has shown that by following an ERAS program, patients see a decrease in the time it takes to recover and at the same time reduce complications. The better news is that with a tailored, regenerative medicine protocol, we can take that recovery to the next level.
With this in mind, I am excited to announce that we now offer custom ERAS programs for non-regenerative medicine patients at our new state-of-the-art facility.
These cutting-edge protocols aid patients recovering from a variety of surgical procedures following the basic tenets of regenerative medicine, including these 7 positive health benefits to assist healing:
Increased blood flow
Encouragement of body tissue regeneration
Stem cell mobilization
Improved infection fighting
Killing of anaerobic bacteria
Enhanced ability to heal
To be clear, we are not trying to substitute for a necessary surgery, rather, we aim to enhance a procedure’s effects (or speed up the healing). Furthermore, we will work in unison with a patient’s treating physician’s office. It is important everyone is on the same page when it comes to a patient’s recovery.
With this in mind, here is a sample post-surgery recovery protocol week:
(NOTE: This can be followed for two, four or as many weeks as necessary to promote recovery.)
3-5 Hyperbaric Oxygen (HBOT) Therapy Sessions Post-Surgery
The benefits of HBOT therapy are many, but a very important aspect in terms of recovery is that it will increase stem cell output from the bone marrow and into one’s circulation. Remember, “cells, not doctors, heal patients”.
This is one of the main tenets we have here at PUR-FORM. When all is said and done, regardless of what type of surgery has been performed, your cells have to do the ultimate healing.In our office we utilize the Sechrist hard shell hyperbaric chambers, which are considered the best of the best. The number of sessions a patient will need depends on the goals and the condition of the patient.Most patients will probably receive significant benefits from three-to-five HBOT treatments. Ideally, these sessions should be done both pre- and post-operative.OPTIONAL ADD-ON: Intermittent Hypoxia Therapy (IHT) Following HBOTTo complement our HB0T sessions we also recommend intermittent hypoxia treatments for pre- and post-operative benefits.IHT stimulates a variety of pathways in a very beneficial way. Perhaps the best way to think about IHT is to picture an elite athlete training at altitude. By doing this, the athlete supports optimum blood flow, prevents degeneration of tissues and organs and encourages growth and development of nervous tissue, among other positive outcomes for the body.IHT and HBOT complement each other very well, and we recommend doing them both pre and post operatively on the same day. In fact, we are one of the few treatment centers in the United States that offers both modalities under one roof!3 Red Light Therapy SessionsAnother weapon we have to enhance post op recovery is red light therapy using a LightStim® bed. The bed houses 18,240 therapeutic, glowing LED lights, which utilize red (630 and 660 nm) and infrared light wavelengths (885 and 940 nm). This is the first bed of its kind to be FDA-cleared for therapeutic use.The LightStim® bed is responsible for the principle of photo-bio-modulation, which has a wide range of effects at the molecular, cellular and tissue levels. All of these are important for healing. We should also keep in mind that light therapy, especially red light therapy, has a profound positive effect on the mitochondria, which are the powerhouses of the cell.
What this means to the layperson is that light will make ATP, which is the body’s energy currency, while at the same time it helps produce transcription factors which affect genes, giving them directions to produce a variety of beneficial compounds. These compounds include proteins like collagen, which can contribute to healing.Other benefits include the production of nitric oxide, which acts as a vasodilator and increases blood supply.
OPTIONAL ADD-ON Infrared Sauna w/ Red Light Therapy
To complement the LightStim® bed we also recommend the Sunlighten® Sauna, which offers a vast array of infrared light and its accompanying benefits to encourage deeper wound healing.Spending time in an infrared sauna can also help fight inflammation in the body, which is an enemy of healing.
FIGHT INFLAMMATION: EB02 TherapyFor those unfamiliar, EBO2 stands for Extracorporeal Blood Oxygenation and Ozonation. This seems like a complicated phrase, but if we break it down we get an idea of what it really means: Extracorporeal means “outside of the body”, oxygenation means “putting oxygen into an area”, and ozonation means “adding ozone to an area”.
EBO2 is a modern, high-volume blood filter device, which uses integrated diffusing membranes within the filter fibers to trap lipids and proteins, which are in excess in the venous blood supply.This technology seems to help patients decrease inflammation, increase NAD, boost immunity and help eliminate toxins and free radicals in the body. Certainly, EBO2 can be used both pre and post operatively. If given a choice it might be more important for EBO2 to be performed pre-operatively, because the circulatory system is the super-highway of the immune system.
ADDITIONAL HEALING: 1-3 Whole Body Cryotherapy SessionsSome individuals may also benefit from treatment with whole body cryotherapy, which is by far our quickest treatment.Typically, one needs to spend only three minutes in our cryochamber to reap the benefits of this sub-zero treatment, which includes increasing growth factors, improved healing and increased blood flow: all important factors for the body before and after surgery.
IMMUNITY & HEALING BOOST: IV TherapiesWe offer patients a wide variety of IV therapies that can target everything from increasing your energy or brain function to even helping you overcome jet lag.
There is good evidence that many of these IV regimens can increase surgery recovery by supplying the necessary components needed for wound healing as well.These IVs can range from immunity boosters to compounds designed to increase the efficiency of the mitochondria.
Certainly, the IV therapies can be performed preoperatively but we will do these only if they are in line with the treating physician’s plan. The reason for this is that some supplements either orally or intravenously can increase the amount of surgical bleeding and we feel this should be the decision of the treating surgeon.Postoperatively is another story. A few days after surgery most IV mixtures are well-tolerated by patients. More importantly, there is strong evidence some of these IV mixtures can enhance healing.
How Can You Be Proactive?Being proactive before a surgical procedure can often make a big difference in terms of recovery and outcome. All of these techniques I’ve mentioned can be complementary to each other. They are based on hard science.
If you’d like to learn more about any of these techniques, please CLICK HERE to set up a one-on-one phone call with us.
As an added bonus, many of these modalities can have long-lasting benefits outside of surgical recovery, such as a decrease in overall inflammation and improved general well being.
We are also more than happy to tailor a specific treatment plan to suit your needs.
- Dr. P
Rebecca Kastin’s motto is to coach, inform and empower you to live life to the fullest. Her goal is to make healthy choices easy for you through a whole-person-centered approach to radiant health and lifestyle management, by giving you the tools you need to create a higher quality of life and discover the best version of yourself.
Rebecca helps you create sustainable, lasting change through Dynamic Eating Psychology, Mind Body Nutrition, whole food, and lifestyle changes. This is a philosophy that makes you the expert on your body’s innate nutritional needs.
Her process promotes excellent health and is your doorway to liberation from the prison of diet culture and weight obsession, creating space and renewing your energy to pursue your dreams, access your fullest potential and love yourself completely.
Working with Rebecca, you will create a customized, easy-to-follow food and wellness plan based on your individual needs. This plan will transform your relationship with food, body, and self from the inside out through coaching, education, nutrition, and physical activity.
By working with Rebecca, you will eliminate confusion and create radiance by indulging in gorgeous, healthy, clean eating: no deprivation, fad diets, or gimmicks. We’ll ditch food obsession, emotional eating, and all-or-nothing thinking. You’ll finally feel empowered to embrace a healthy relationship with your body and the food you give it by creating optimal sustainable good health, confidence, and longevity.
You can finally free yourself from that “stuck” feeling and move toward permanent weight loss, optimal health and wellness, confidence, and joy.
Rebecca’s compassionate, loving approach to wellness comes from decades of personal experience and her struggles to overcome her unhealthy relationship with food.
Rebecca graduated from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and is an NBC-HWC National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach. She is a Hormone Health Specialist and is currently a student at The Institute for the Psychology of Eating. She is a 200-hour Vinyasa Krama teacher, has authored her first cookbook, “For The Love Of Real Food,” and is the mother to 3 beautiful, empowered daughters.
When Rebecca is not teaching or coaching, you can find her practicing yoga, traveling, and leading workshops to promote her ultimate message of living a healthy, balanced life.
Book a discovery call with Rebecca today! Finally, you can focus on what your body needs.
The holidays are upon us and the New Year is coming. Unfortunately, most people will wait another week or so to begin whatever resolution or healthy habit they want to start in 2023. But I would counter that plan with this question:
Why wait for January 1st to begin your new healthy habits? Start now! This way you can give yourself momentum heading into the New Year (even a few days matter when it comes to forming new habits).
Also, this gives you time to pivot. Everyone talks about New Year's Resolutions in January, and if you join in on that mindset, you might feel compelled to continue with things that aren't working for you for another day or week.
But starting now gives you time to determine if your goals are what you want to focus on in the coming year. If you want to lose weight in 2023, do you want to pack on the pounds at the end of 2022? Starting on your new goals now gives you time to start slowly because the truth is that cold turkey isn't fun or sustainable.
You're not a light switch, and you can't simply turn your habits on and off. You need time to slowly ease into your desired changes, which makes starting now a great idea!
And here’s how to do it:
Think About Your Goals
What are your goals for 2023? Having a list you can return to can help you get things done that are important to you.
Create a Plan
The key to your plans for this holiday season and the year beyond is to make them realistic and specific. Instead of setting a goal such as "get healthier," try to set a goal such as cutting out meat one meal per week and adding more veggies. Or increase the distance of your runs every week so that you can run that 5K in June. As long as it's specific enough, you can plan for and set yourself up for success.
Just Do It
Now that you have goals and a plan, take steps toward meeting them! Why wait until January 1st to set things in motion? Let's be honest; how many years have you made New Year's resolutions on New Year's Day, only to have them fizzle out by Valentine's Day? No judgment, we've all been there, but you may want to find a different approach this time. That approach could be to start right now!
Be Nice to Yourself
I will give you a dose of realness: You're not perfect. No one is. We set goals for ourselves with the best intentions but sometimes fall short. That's OK. Especially with the holiday season approaching, it's challenging. You will sometimes miss your goals, but don't beat yourself up when that happens.
The most important thing to remember is that you're making an effort and working on goals that mean something to you.Give Yourself Credit
When you acknowledge and appreciate your small achievements, it will help you to get motivated to succeed and commit to the one ultimate goal that requires a longer time to reach.
THE IMPORTANCE OF GOAL SETTING
Setting goals is simply acknowledging what you hope to achieve. Take time to get clear on your goals, and don't think a singular, broad goal will keep you motivated.
It's OK to start with a general goal, such as losing weight or lowering your LDL, but what other little goals or milestones do you want to set up? Think of these smaller goals as your roadmap toward your bigger goal.
Main Goal: Losing weight /Specific Amount of Weight
• Increasing water intake
• Exercising daily
• Practicing self-care daily
• Meal planning
Starting with smaller goals and adding new goals every week will lead you toward losing weight.
The SMART way of goal setting:
Specific: Make sure to narrow your goals; know EXACTLY what you want to achieve.
Measurable: make your goals meaningful or motivating; so you can measure success along the way.
Achievable: keep your goals realistic; losing 50 pounds in 30 days is NOT realistic or achievable
Relevant: are your goals reasonable and results-based? Are they important to YOU?
Timely: are these goals timely for you right NOW, or are these goals you set for yourself ten years ago?
Always remember that if your goal is weight loss, you are not making a diet change – you are making a lifestyle change.
Think about changing your daily habits into healthy ones that you can manage for years, take back control over your time, attention, and your body, and get ready for 2023.
Want to learn more about our weight loss program or request an appointment? Click here.
As a growing percentage of the population of the United States reaches an elderly age, sarcopenia has become an increasingly larger problem. In fact, sarcopenia used to be something most people knew very little about. Unfortunately, now that it has become so common, the condition has moved into the mainstream.
If you aren’t yet familiar with the condition, the best way to think of sarcopenia is as osteoporosis of the muscle. Sarcopenia is a syndrome characterized by progressive and generalized loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength. As such, it is strongly correlated with physical disability, poor quality of life and death.
Risk factors for sarcopenia include age, gender and overall level of physical activity. Sarcopenia is considered 'primary' (or age-related) when no other cause is evident but aging itself, while sarcopenia is often considered 'secondary' when one or more other causes are evident.
Four of the six major contributing factors to sarcopenia are related to problems with mitochondria, while the other two are indirectly related.
Let me explain each of these terms:
Many scientists believe that sarcopenia results in part from defective autophagy in the muscles. Muscle, as you may know, is made up of tissues with heavy concentrations of mitochondria. This means that one of the best methods to stimulate healthy mitochondrial autophagy is through intermittent fasting, as well as a calorie-restricted diet.
This is because mitochondrial autophagy is critical for the maintenance of mitochondrial function and muscle mass. Keep in mind there is a sweet spot between fasting too much and fasting just enough to reap the benefits. Too much autophagy may be detrimental to muscle development.
Another method of stimulating autophagy is the use of Rapamycin. Rapamycin will diminish the activity of the mTOR pathway, which boosts autophagy.
Mitochondrial Oxidative Stress
The mitochondria, by utilizing oxygen, will produce reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are essentially free radicals. ROS production is associated with mitochondrial DNA mutations induced by oxidative stress and these mutations result in a defective electron transport chain.
The electron transport chain is vital for ATP production. When ATP production drops off, the mitochondria are at risk due to the chronic oxidative stress. This leads to protein loss and muscle atrophy. Ultimately, mitochondrial oxidative stress will diminish the number of functioning mitochondria.
Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles undergoing coordinated cycles of fission and fusion. This process is referred to as 'mitochondrial dynamics' and its purpose is to help mitochondria maintain their shape, distribution and size.
Their transient and rapid morphological adaptations are crucial for many cellular processes such as cell cycle, immunity, apoptosis and mitochondrial quality control. Imbalances of mitochondrial dynamics negatively affect mitochondrial homeostasis and function, and it has been recently reported that in skeletal muscle these imbalances induce cell senescence and muscle atrophy.
Mitochondria play key roles in activating apoptosis in mammalian cells. Apoptosis is a highly programmed form of cell death. Mitochondrial apoptosis results in the release of proteins from the space between the mitochondrial inner and outer membrane that, once in the cytoplasm, activates certain enzymes that dismantle cells and signal efficient phagocytosis of cell corpses.
Myostatin is a growth factor which plays a negative role in regulating skeletal muscle mass and growth. If myostatin can be blocked there should be an increase in muscle mass. There is a great deal of research on myostatin blockers and there are even shortcuts to increasing myostatin blockers in the body.
An inflammatory cytokine is a signaling molecule that is secreted from immune cells and certain other cell types that promotes inflammation. Inflammatory cytokines are involved in the upregulation of inflammatory reactions. There are three master inflammatory cytokines that are called IL-1, IL-6, and TNF. While their actual names aren’t important, what is important is the damage they can do.
Many disease conditions are the result of an imbalance of the various cytokines with the inflammatory ones predominating. One of the goals is to increase the presence of anti-inflammatory cytokines. The three major anti-inflammatory cytokines are IL-1 A, IL-10, and IGF-1.
In addition to these six factors of sarcopenia, another thing to keep in mind is that muscle health is directly tied to brain health.
Muscles secrete a number of different growth factors, which can have significant effects on the brain preventing cognitive decline. One of these factors is called Brain Derived Neurotropic Factor (BNDF). Increasing BNDF is one of the more important methods of preventing neurodegenerative diseases of the brain. The old adage “a sound body leads to a sound mind” is true.
Knowing all of the above, one question comes to mind:
How can we turn back the clock and help a patient improve their sarcopenia condition?
One thing is for sure; any patient experiencing sarcopenia must begin an exercise program ASAP. Without the patient exercising, all treatments are doomed to failure. Also, exercise should consist mainly of resistance exercises (strength training), but cardio is also very important in maintaining one’s overall health.
Above and beyond a renewed, vigorous exercise program, here are 8 methods we use at PUR-FORM to help prevent and reverse sarcopenia:
EBO2 is a technique that utilizes ozone gas, blood filtration and blood photobiomodulation. This system will produce compounds that stimulate the NrF2 pathway, which diminishes inflammation in the body and acts as a catalyst for the production of NAD. Increased NAD results in the production of more ATP.
Ultimately, this process will improve the health, numbers, and efficiency of the mitochondria. In addition, the benefits of EBO2 not only extend to sarcopenia but to general well being. Reducing inflammation is one of the major methods to reduce inflammaging (inflammation + aging) in the body on many levels.
2. HYPERBARIC OXYGEN THERAPY (HBOT):
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy raises oxygen levels and will increase mitochondrial efficiency and ATP production. In addition, certain hyperbaric oxygen treatments can lead to telomere lengthening, which is responsible for reverse cell aging. Lastly, HBOT is able to stimulate the release of more stem cells into circulation, improving respiration and increasing mitochondrial mass.
3. INTERMITTENT HYPOXIA TRAINING:
Our clinic is one of the very few clinics able to utilize intermittent hypoxia therapy (IHT) via a very specialized machine. One huge benefit of IHT is that it can help in the production of a myostatin blocker.
Myostatin blockers are one of the Holy Grails of body builders. All studies have shown that animals either lacking myostatin or treated with substances that block the activity of myostatin have significantly more muscle mass.
Intermittent hypoxia therapy will directly stimulate many beneficial pathways in the body to reduce inflammation and aging. We have both a machine and the ability to perform blood flow restriction training (BFR) as well.
BFR uses specialized tourniquets during exercise. These tourniquets deprive the muscles of blood flow and subsequently oxygen. Many times, we will combine IHT with HBOT to get the best of both worlds. Like HBOT, IHT can also increase stem cell output from the bone marrow.
At PUR-FORM we have both a red light therapy bed and an infrared sauna. Each of these devices can have a profound effect on reducing inflammation, increasing muscle health and improving immunity.
Dr. Michael Hamblin, Ph.D. a Principal Investigator at Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, and an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School, recently wrote:
“In the near future, sport agencies must deal with ‘laser doping’ by at least openly discussing it because the aforementioned beneficial effects and the pre-conditioning achieved by laser and LED irradiation will highly improve athletic performance.”
Again, the reason for this is because photobiomodulation seems to have a direct effect on mitochondria in muscles. As you now know, increased mitochondrial health will lead to increased muscle health, which can help reverse sarcopenia.
5. IV THERAPY AND OTHER ADJUNCT TREATMENTS:
Since a decline in muscle mass can many times be attributed to a decline in mitochondrial efficiency, giving intravenous NAD can help to correct these problems.
NAD+ is a cofactor, or a “helper molecule,” for a large class of enzymes called sirtuins. These enzymes require a non-protein chemical cofactor like NAD+ to function. The effects of sirtuins go well beyond metabolism. They play key roles in inflammation, transcription of genes, programmed cell death, and of course, aging.
Different sirtuins are located in different aspects of the cell. They have varying targets including DNA modulation, energy homeostasis, and cell cycle control, just to name a few.
It is well known that mitochondrial oxidative capacity and NAD synthesis are reduced in sarcopenia. NAD is also used by various enzymes that repair DNA damage found in muscle tissue.
Other IV modalities include a number of formulas including vitamin C, curcumin, resveratrol and more. These compounds, along with others, stimulate the immune system and collagen production.
We also have at our disposal various combinations of peptides, which can positively affect the telomeres or the mitochondria or both. We have one set of peptides that we call our mitochondrial rescue formula. Another peptide that comes to mind is follistatin, which can block myostatin.
6. CYTOKINE THERAPY:
Many of our other modalities will produce a variety of cytokines that will nullify the effects of the inflammatory cytokines. We also have a propriety method of delivering anti-inflammatory cytokines via the use of cytokines delivered via an iontophoresis patch.
7. STEM CELLS:
We are one of the few facilities with the technical knowledge to stimulate and process a patient’s own VSELs. In fact, we have a propriety method to stimulate the body to produce more of them and we have an additional method to activate them.
To that end, we offer a package called “The Triad”.
The Triad consists of a VSELS treatment, an NAD IV and an EBO2 treatment. We are also looking into the aspect of using culture-expanded stem cells from the patient’s adipose tissue.
These modalities will increase stem cell output from the bone marrow.
There are several important supplements that may help fend off sarcopenia.
In addition to NAD+, which we’ve mentioned, a Nitric Oxide (NO) stimulator may help as well. Nitric Oxide is one of the most important signaling molecules in the body. As one ages the amount of NO in the muscle decreases, leading to sarcopenia. We can help reverse this by providing extra NO. Two products from HumanN that supply NO are SuperBeets and Neo-40.
Several nutrients, including creatine, vitamin D, and whey protein, have also shown great promise in combating sarcopenia.
Other nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, carnitine compounds, and the amino acid glutamine have biological effects that may be beneficial in promoting healthy muscle mass.
There are also several foods that seem to fight sarcopenia via a myostatin blockade, including green tea, cocoa, cauliflower, broccoli, magnolia, apple peel, sea cucumber extract, and holy basil. One other supplement high on our list is spermidine.
Spermidine is a potent stimulator of autophagy and is able to stimulate a number of anti-aging pathways and reduce inflammation.
THE BOTTOM LINE:
Sarcopenia is an increasingly serious problem for our aging population. While the number one way to combat it is to begin a serious resistance training program to build muscle, the treatments I just listed will have a profound effect on not only halting advanced sarcopenia, but on boosting mitochondrial production and preventing future muscle deterioration.
– Dr. P
I am thrilled to announce that we have moved into our new 12,000 square foot, state-of-the-art facility at Florida Atlantic University’s Research Park on the campus of FAU. Our goal is to continue to advance the entire field of regenerative medicine for our patients, while hopefully being involved with several of the FAU science and medical school departments on research projects of mutual interest.This is a world-class, one-stop facility for state-of-the-art regenerative medicine and anti-aging techniques, therapies and overall health optimization. Our scientific research, commitment to staying on the cutting edge, and hunting for new, evidence-based treatments is a driving force for what we do and is what helps separate us from the pack.I am excited to share a brief overview of what we’ll be offering at the new facility below.Our Wide Variety of Potent IV Therapies
Our new facility will offer the same vast array of IV therapies you’ve come to expect from us, including everything from immune boosting Vitamin C-based formulas to IVs that address anti-aging, travel issues, brain health, energy and more.
We have tailored our IV menu to reflect various pathways in the body we wish to stimulate. Many of these pathways deal with mitochondrial health, inflammatory and anti-inflammatory pathways, and nutrient sensing pathways, all of which are of paramount importance in anti-aging science.
Think of these pathways as the computer software of the body. Perhaps mitochondrial health is the single most important aspect on the road to health, healing, and longevity. To that end, we offer many unique IV combinations not available in most other anti-aging or regenerative medicine facilities, including our latest treatment involving methylene blue.
Best-in-Class Regenerative Musculoskeletal Therapies
Our commitment to regenerative musculoskeletal therapies will continue to be a main area of emphasis for us, as we’ve built our reputation on being the best. We will also include exciting new modalities to enhance our success even more. While we will continue to utilize a patient’s own regenerative cells, we will incorporate photo modulation, growth factor therapy, peptides, and other tricks for our regenerative medicine trade.
In our new facility, we will become involved in some INDs (Investigational New Drug) and IRB studies, while also utilizing state-of-the-art imaging such as ultrasound and fluoroscopic guidance.
New Facility, New Regenerative Medicine Offerings!
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
By placing a patient in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber (all glass to avoid claustrophobia) we can dramatically increase the atmospheric pressure to levels not typically found in most centers, even rivaling units that are found in large hospitals.
There are many far ranging, anti-aging effects that are related to hyperbaric oxygen therapy and what is most exciting is that we will be utilizing a number of propriety protocols along with it.
These protocols will deliver many anti-aging and regenerative benefits, including methods to help increase the length of telomeres (ends of a DNA strand), which is of paramount importance in anti-aging. Another benefit involves increasing the number of stem cells released from the bone marrow. These are just a few of the exciting new protocols we’ll have at our fingertips with our new hyperbaric oxygen chamber.
Whole Body Cryotherapy
A cryotherapy chamber maintains sub-zero temperatures of -140°C / -220°. Patients typically enter for 1 to 4 minutes, depending on how long they’ve built up their tolerance.Given the proper regimen, there are a number of dramatic health benefits derived from whole body cryotherapy including muscle health, relief of DOMS (delayed onset muscles soreness), inflammation reduction, growth factor increase, improved moods and more.
Another benefit of cryotherapy is weight loss (a 3-minute treatment can burn 800 calories), resulting from the production of brown fat, the healthiest form of fat one can have.
Another benefit of cryotherapy is the ability to improve overall muscle health and growth. This occurs from the production of myostatin blockers under extreme cold conditions, which are a Holy Grail to body builders and athletes alike. Whole body cryotherapy also causes muscles to increase certain growth factors. It is important to understand that the healthier your muscles are, the healthier you are.
In addition to whole body cryotherapy, we will also offer two forms of local cryotherapy. Local cryotherapy utilizes a handheld device that applies extreme cold of approximately -148 F to certain problems areas.
Local cryotherapy is amendable to those portions of the body that cannot be treated with whole body cryotherapy. These areas include the extremities such as feet, hands, wrists and ankles.
Furthermore, this machine can be used to perform facials due to an increase in collagen production from the cold.Red Light and Infrared Sauna Therapy
While mainstream practitioners are just catching on to the benefits of photobiomodulation (PBM), I am proud to say that we have utilized this therapy for the last fifteen years to great success.
PBM involves utilizing light therapy (red light therapy and near infra-red therapy) to achieve a number of health benefits. The reason this therapy is so effective is because the wavelength of this light range has a positive effect on the mitochondria in your body, increasing their health and number. Generally speaking, the healthier your mitochondria, the healthier you are.
These red light wavelengths will also reduce inflammation and swelling while at the same time increase tissue healing throughout the body. We are also looking at the possibility of using one or two other colors to enhance the treatment with patients. We will also be utilizing proprietary formulas with certain supplements and compounds that can be photo-activated with far-reaching beneficial effects on patients.
We have utilized EBO2 for a number of years and it is a stalwart in many of our treatments.
EBO2 treatment involves the use of a dialysis filter, ozone gas and photobiomodulation to diminish inflammation in the body by a variety of methods.
One such method is by stimulation of the NRF2 pathway, which is considered a thermostat of anti-inflammation.In addition to the beneficial effects of the EBO2 itself, we will also utilize UVA (ultraviolet A wavelength light), UVC (ultraviolet C wavelength light), amber, green, and red lights to accomplish PBM.
All of these colors have specific parameters which they affect, from ATP production to immune-boosting qualities. The EBO2 technique is one of the backbones of our anti-aging protocols
Whole Body Compression Therapy Devices
If you’re a sports fan, you’ve likely noticed that athletes from a variety of sports have been suiting up in puffy, intergalactic-looking contraptions to reap the benefits of compression therapy.
Compression therapy is thought to improve performance and reduce soreness after exercise by using inflatable sleeves that apply pressure to the legs, hips or arms. This therapy aims to increase blood flow and combat soreness, inflammation and swelling by removing waste products such as lactic acid. Increased blood flow will deliver more oxygen and nutrients to those areas in need, and the effects will help speed up recovery, relieve pain and improve athletic performance.
One interesting 2016 study on ultramarathon runners published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy found that post-exercise pneumatic compression therapy offered the same benefits as post-exercise massage, specifically lowering overall muscular fatigue.
Daily treatments using a pneumatic compression device reduced recovery time from Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) when compared to a continuously-worn compression sleeve. Delayed onset muscle soreness is the pain and stiffness felt in muscles several hours to days after unaccustomed or strenuous exercise.A First-Class, Multi-Modal Physical Therapy Facility
Our new floor plan will have a high-level physical therapy facility on site so that we can cater to our patients’ full journey through regenerative and anti-aging medicine, including recovery from injuries, exercise, stretching, prehab and rehab.
We will have the advantage of combining physical therapy with our various modalities to enhance recovery and improve strength. Some of the items that will be offered include Blood Flow Restriction Therapy also known as BFRT.
BFRT utilizes a tourniquet during a resistance workout to dramatically improve muscle strength and size while at the same time not requiring extensive weight. We will be looking at improving the patient’s utilization of oxygen as it relates to physical activity and recovery as well.
Medical Hydrogen Therapy
In the past few years many initial and subsequent clinical studies have demonstrated that hydrogen can act as an important physiological regulatory factor to cells and organs with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptotic and other protective effects.
We think that it is an important signaling molecule that is also critical in the production of ATP. So far, several delivery methods applied in these studies have proved to be available and convenient, including inhalation, drinking hydrogen-dissolved water and injection with hydrogen-saturated saline.Numerous publications reveal that H2 reduces oxidative stress not only by direct reactions with strong oxidants, but also indirectly by regulating various gene expressions. Cells that are repeatedly exposed to inflammatory mediators will have genes that code for inflammatory response proteins switched on and thus be in a constant inflammation state. This leads to diseases and health conditions strongly linked to inflammation, including asthma and cardiovascular disease.
Some of the molecules that can instigate a change in gene expression are Nf-kB, TNFa, and reactive nitrogen species such as nitric oxide and peroxynitrite. Molecular hydrogen is an epigenetic modifying agent for genes that code for chronic pain and inflammation. It indirectly affects gene expression through its ability to modulate molecules that have a direct epigenetic effect. We are in the midst of finalizing hydrogen treatment for our patients.
Intermittent Hypoxia Therapy
There is a movement afoot to incorporate intermittent hypoxic therapy (IHT) in a number of different medical fields, including sports performance, health and wellness.
Intermittent hypoxia has been the subject of considerable research in recent years because it can trigger a vast array of beneficial effects in multiple physiological systems.
IHT utilizes machines that generate oxygen-reduced air similar to those used by mountain climbers and endurance athletes who are training to compete in high-altitude environments. Intermittent hypoxia works because it prompts the body to adapt to repeated changes in oxygen levels.
There are more than 30 genes that are regulated by exposure to hypoxia stimulus and an athlete's hematocrit level will increase with high altitude training. However, that is not the only benefit of hypoxia acclimatization.
I foresee Intermittent Hypoxia Training (IHT) as a disruptive technology. Like most techniques, its success is related to safe and proper utilization. When using IHT with our patients, we will constantly monitor the performance and make individual adjustments to best suit the patient and his therapy. The following illustration shows some of the hard science behind intermittent hypoxia therapy.
When this therapy is combined with high levels of oxygen, many other beneficial pathways are stimulated.
We will also combine IHT with other modalities that should enhance it further. This would include hyperoxia treatments, as well as some other modalities, including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, whole body cryotherapy, red light sauna, and more.
In addition, certain dietary supplements such as Ginkgo biloba, coenzyme Q10, and beetroot juice can increase oxygenation through enhanced blood flow while branched-chain amino acids and omega-3 fatty acids can improve maximum oxygen consumption (Vo2 Max).
A Home for Functional Medicine!
In addition to the treatments mentioned above, we will have a functional medicine division headed by our excellent nurse practitioner, Carissa Raver.
Carissa will handle a multitude of programs, from our scientific weight reduction programs (which will also utilize some of the aforementioned modalities) to hormonal balance to complementing our anti-aging programs. We also plan to have an aesthetics division that will blend beauty with science.
To say we are excited about our new facility is an understatement. As time goes on we will add even more state-of-the-art techniques to the cutting edge treatments we sharpen daily.
Remember, we don’t just practice regenerative and anti-aging medicine, we define it!
- Dr. P