Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Building Blocks

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein.
Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

I don’t know about you, but as a child I loved playing with blocks. It was always a challenge to see how they could be interconnected in order to build an every more impressive structure on our living room floor.

Body Fuel

Well, on the heels of last’s week’s discussion of carbohydrates, and why they are so important in our diet, it’s now time to have a look at protein. Trust me: you’ll get the “building blocks” reference in short order.
 
Protein

You’ll recall that there are three macronutrients: proteinsfats, and carbohydrates. We’ll let the nutritionists and fitness trainers argue about which of the three is most important. Bottom line: all are essential – in the right proportions – to healthy body function.
That being said, let’s begin our review of macronutrients with protein.   
 
Basic Organic Chemistry

First, we need to have a quick look at some basic (really basic) organic chemistry.
All organic compounds are made of at least carbon and hydrogen. Additionally, they may be composed of oxygen and nitrogen, and possibly other elements, such as phosphorus, halogen, and various metals.

Amino Acids

It just so happens that amino acids are one of the more important organic compounds, having atoms of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and sulfur.

Essential and Non-Essential

Of the 20 or so known amino acids, 9 are called “essential.” This means that we cannot produce them on our own, like plants do. Instead, we have to eat certain foods in order to get these amino acids. And, since the body doesn’t store them (like fat and starch), we need to eat these amino-acid containing foods regularly.

Muscle’s Building Blocks

When I say “need to eat them,” I’m not exaggerating, either. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. And, protein is the building block of muscle . . . all muscle, not just the kind we seek to develop visibly in the gym.

For example, the heart is a muscle. And, unlike the muscles of our arms or legs, important as they are, this muscle – and its constant beating – literally determines whether we live or die.

Catalysis

The work protein does within cells is no less important. Protein catalyzes (i.e., fires-up) nearly all cellular processes within living organisms. Bottom line: no protein, no life.Period.

Eat Your Protein!

Now, there’s plenty of debate over the best sources of protein. Nor is this particular post able to consider the comparative merits of omnivorousvegetarian, and vegan diets. The main thing is that your protein be clean and from high quality sources.

We’ll tackle fat, the remaining macronutrient, in next week’s post. That being said, it’s important to remember that we’re talking about general principles here, not particular(i.e., personal) recommendations. That’s where our Protocol’s nutritional testing comes into play. Everybody has different needs within the guidelines of universal macronutrient necessities.

Always working for your best physical, dental, and emotional health,

Dr. Blanche Grube
Centers for Healing

Monday, December 7, 2015

Carbohydrates

Dear friend of Centers for Healing, 

 

Carbs. We hear about them constantly. Too many will make you fat. Too few, and you have no energy and even have trouble thinking. After all, the brain is a notorious “carb hog.” If you drastically reduce your carb intake, you can even get really, really sickketoacidosis. Sounds nasty, right? It should, since it basically means the body is the process of cannibalizing itself, due to lack of available sources of energy.

 

Carbs 101

 

In the limited space afforded by a blog post, here are the basics on carbohydrates

 

To begin, they can be simple or complexSimple carbs are those that have just one or two sugar molecules: monosaccharides and disaccharides. There are five different simple sugars:

 

• fructose
• galactose
• lactose
• maltose
• sucrose

 

Fructose is sugar found in fruit. Galactose and lactose are milk sugars. Maltose is found in beer, and sucrose, or table sugar, is what most of us mean when we say “sugar.”

 

Starch And Insoluble Fiber

 

The complex carbs, meanwhile, are those have three or more sugar molecules (i.e., polysaccharides). These are starches and fiber, which is either soluble or insoluble(i.e., indigestible). Common natural sources of starch are rice, beans, and tubers (i.e., potatoes). Fiber, meanwhile, is naturally found in fruit, vegetables, beans, and the indigestible parts of grains. Are you beginning to see the natural overlapping of macronutrients?

 

Sugarcane

 

You may have heard the saying, “A calorie is a calorie.” This is true in a certain sense, in that the body doesn’t really distinguish between simple and complex carbs once they’ve been broken down into glucose for energy. However, the original source of those sugars makes a big difference on their overall impact on the body.

 

In nature, simple and complex sugars are generally present together in the same sources. Think, for instance, of a stalk of sugarcane. As a grass, it is loaded with fiber. When chewed, it releases a sweet juiceIn its natural state, therefore, it is an unrefined carbohydrate, with both simple and complex characteristics. And, sugar cane harvesters are known to munch on the fresh cane stalks while they’re working, with no damage to their teeth and gums!

 

Compare that to refined table sugar, derived from that same stalk of sugarcane. The fiber has been discarded entirely, leaving just the crystallized residue of the original juice. This is pure sucrose. When eaten, it is immediately absorbed into the bloodstream, causing the pancreas to secrete excess insulin to balance the level of sugar in the blood. Can you say “diabetes”?

 

The Good Guys

 

So, what are the “good carbs”? Regardless of our individual ancestry, here’s my recommendation: each of us should be eating a diet rich in unrefined carbohydrates. This meansvegetables (especially green leafy and cruciferous), legumes, some whole grains – but beware of wheat – andmoderate amounts of fruit. I personally consider a healthy diet one that consists of 85% unrefined carbohydrates. Yes, that leaves just 15% for protein and fat! However, many foods that are rich in unrefined carbohydrates are also high in protein. I’ll speak more about this in next week’s blog post.

 

Cookies Don’t Grow On Trees

 

To make even simpler for you to remember: the “bad carbs” are all your cakes, candies, cookies, pastas, pizza, sodas, ice cream and processed breakfast treats like “Pop Tarts”.  All of these will raise our blood sugar very quickly,to be followed just as quickly by a crash in our blood sugar. Then we crave more of the same. The exact opposite is true of unrefined carbs. If you don’t believe me, try eating an apple, skin and all. Then, see whether you crave a second one. 

 

Hopefully, this hasn’t left your head spinning too badly. Stay with me. Next week, as promised, I’ll tackle the question of protein, followed by a post on fat. Then, I’ll try to tie it all together for you. Nutrition is a fascinating study, and its consequences are too important for us to not know at least the basics.

 

Until next week, then, take care!

 

Dr. Blanche

Friday, November 27, 2015

DARK Act

Dear friends of Centers for Healing,

 

From This Week’s Blog Post 

 

“Most people come to us for complete dental revision following the Huggins-Grube Protocol because they want to live, and to live well.  Some come because they have actually been given a diagnosis. That diagnosis could be cancer or an autoimmune disease. 

 

“Some patients mistakenly believe that the dental revision will be like a "magic pill" that will make all of their physical troubles go away. Sadly, we have to insert a healthy dose of reality for such patients. Few of them got sick overnight. Just as few fully recover overnight. Most of the time, recovery is a road, not just a step.”

 

(continue reading)

 

DARK Act


Also, in the spirit of this week’s blog post on nutrition, I want to call your attention – in case you haven’t heard about it already – to a truly disturbing recent turn of events in the food industry.

 

In midsummer (July 23), the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1599, otherwise known as the “Deny Americans the Right to Know,” or DARK, Act. Essentially, this act, if passed by the Senate, will block all states from labeling genetically-engineered foods. 

 

This would mean, among other things:

• Preempting the individual states from requiring the labeling of GMO products

• Eliminating virtually the FDA’s ability to craft a uniform GMO labeling system for the entire country

• Codifying the current broken voluntary labeling system

• Allowing “natural” foods to contain GMO ingredients

 

Dear friends, we need food, not Frankenfood.  Educate yourselves on this and other nutritional topics. If you are politically minded, make your voice heard by signing one or more of the petitions currently circulating both on and offline.


For more information on the DARK Act – including resources for sending petitions to your Senators – see the following links: 

http://naturalsociety.com/petition-stop-the-dark-act-that-would-make-gmo-labeling-illegal/

http://www.anh-usa.org/action-alert-tell-the-senate-to-reject-the-dark-act/

 

Meanwhile, keep well, and eat realfood: moderately, and in season

 

All the best, 

Dr. Blanche

Monday, November 23, 2015

Good Eating Habits



Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

A Living Diet

Most people come to us for complete dental revision following the Huggins-Grube Protocol because they want to live, and to live well.  Some come because they have actually been given a diagnosis. That diagnosis could be cancer or an autoimmune disease. 

Some patients mistakenly believe that the dental revision will be like a "magic pill" that will make all of their physical troubles go away. Sadly, we have to insert a healthy dose of reality for such patients. Few of them got sick overnight. Just as few fully recover overnight. Most of the time, recovery is a road, not just a step.

That being said, what you eat and how you eat very often determines how well you will do after the complete dental revision. And, last week’s words about nutrition are a perfect lead-in to a few posts on the importance of good eating habits. Remember: Centers for Healing is all about keeping the friendly communication alive and well between dentistry and biology. After all, biology is the science of life. And, we eat to live.

However, before getting into specific considerations of macronutrients (i.e., proteins, fats, carbohydrates), I think we need to explain in greater detail the importance of personally-tailored nutrition.

Eating Like Your Ancestors Ate

I always have hesitated to give my patients a detailed list of what they should and should not eat, because individual nutritional requirements can vary greatly from person to person. In fact, how well they feel after eating certain foods may well depend on our ancestral diet

Basically, the ancestral diet theoryis based on the way a person’s ancestors’ ate over the course of the past 2,000 years. Where there has been little mixing of blood lines – for example, think of the Alaskan Eskimos or the Massai of southern Kenya and northern Tanzania – it is fairly easy to determine how they’ve been eating over the course of millennia. For the Eskimos, the traditional diet is fat and meat, with usually nothing else, save a particular local vegetable, when necessary. For the Massai, it is raw meat, raw milk, and cattle blood (also raw), with little to no fruits or vegetables. Period!

For the rest of us, figuring out the ancestral diet is not such an easy matter. In the USA, for example, many of us come from a very mixed ancestry. However, that doesn't mean that we shouldn’t try to figure-out personal dietary needs, whether or not one ascribes to the ancestral diet theory. In fact, determining a person’s nutritional needs based on his or her blood chemistry usually requires anywhere from 15 to 20 hours of doctor-patient discussion. Dr. Huggins used to say that he rarely saw a patient who was eating according to his or her actual nutritional needs.

The Common Denominator

In spite of the unavoidable uncertainties regarding theories of nutrition, there is one thing I know for sure. It’s this: no matter what ancestry you come from and no matter what food your great-great grandparents ate, their diet did not include processed food. You know, “food” that is to be eaten cold out of the refrigerator, or out of a box, or heated-up in a microwave. Sort of goes without saying, if you really think about it: that’s not real food! It may have started with some real food, but it sure didn’t end up that way!



Of course, there will be variations regarding the type of carbohydrates and  grains they ate, or the amount of meat and how it was cooked, etc. For example, if your ancestors came from the tropics, then your body could probably tolerate more of the tropical fruits that are found in our present-day grocery stores. That means you can digest bananas and mangoes pretty much year round, even if you currently live way up here in northeast Pennsylvania!



Universal Truths

In the next few blog posts, I will go into greater detail about the three food categories. This includes what to look for in a healthy diet and what to avoid, no matter what your ancestry.

Always working for your best physical, dental, and emotional health.

Happy Holidays! 

Dr. Blanche Grube.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Phase Three of the Huggins-Grube Protocol – Nutrition



Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

If you’ve been following these blog posts over the course of the past few months, you’ll know that they’ve been like a virtual tour of the Huggins-Grube Protocol. In a nutshell, that’s what we call our special patient (and doctor) protection practice. It covers the respective stages before, during, and after dental revision surgery.

Metabolism

Our final topic is one with which each of us is very familiar. That is, in practice, at least. I’m talking about nutrition. After all, we are what we eat. (Well, mostly. Better said: we are what we digest.)

Now, pretty much everyone has heard dentists advise their patients to watch their intake of sugar, both at meals and in between meals.

However, some of you may be surprised to hear a dentist talk with such insistence about nutrition in general. Sadly, biology and conventional dentistry are often total strangers. We mean to fix that!

Chemistry, Not Type

That’s right: our approach to nutrition is based, not upon generic blood types (A, B, O, etc.), but upon specific blood chemistries. In other words, each person needs to eat according to his or her unique blood chemistry.

Macronutrients

We can tell a lot about your personal nutritional needs from a “blood chemistry profile.”

In particular, your profile tells us about your need for – and use of – macronutrients. We commonly know them by the less technical names of proteinfats, and carbohydrates.

  • Are you eating enough protein?
  • More importantly, are you properly metabolizing (i.e., burning) the protein you eat?
  • Are you consuming the proper amount of healthy fat?
  • Are you eating too many or too few carbohydrates? 
These are just a few of the many questions we ask, and which a good blood profile can answer. Remember, it’s all about discerning what your body needs and how well it’s using what it gets.

Additionally, we look at how well your liver and kidneys are working, especially in their important work of ongoing detoxification of the rest of the body. “Good stuff in; bad stuff out.”

The End of the Road

As promised in last week’s post, this present one wraps-up our several month review of our Patient Protection Protocol. I really hope these posts have helped you see the Protocol in its entirety, with enough detail of the individual parts to make the whole thing come together.

Of course, I’ll return in the future to one or more of the many topics we’ve covered. After all, our Protocol is a “work in progress.” We strive to incorporate the best of new theories and practices into the comprehensive care we offer our patients.

As ever, feel free to contact us here at our Scranton, PA office with any questions or concerns you may have. The phone number is (570) 343-1500, and we’re there every week from Monday through Thursday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Honored to be working always for your best physical, dental, and emotional health,

Dr. Blanche

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Dental work can be painful. Even very painful


Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

Let’s face it. Dental work can be painful. Even very painful. And, in the case of dental revision, the pain can be brutal.

Healing Light

For this reason, within several days after the completion of revision work, we may suggest using the Anodyne machine. Anodyne treatment is a type of infra-red light therapy designed to stimulate increased circulation. And increased circulation means reduced pain.

In the case of the Anodyne machine, it specifically stimulates the body’s immune system to release nitric oxide. And, since it does this by means of infra-red light, it’s non-invasive.

Nitric, Not Nitrous

Don’t get confused here. I said “nitric,” not “nitrous.” Some dentists use nitrous oxide (i.e., “laughing gas”) for what we call “twilight zone” treatment. Nitric oxide, on the other hand, is a nitrogen-oxygen compound naturally produced by the body.

Essentially, nitric oxide makes it easier for red blood cells (remember last week’s post: each of us has anywhere from 12 to 25 trillion of these cells) to penetrate injured tissue and deliver the oxygen critical for healing.

Bruising

Dr. Huggins used to relate having seen post-surgical bruises undergo a 50 percent reduction within just 30 minutes of using the Anodyne machine. Normally, such bruising would take from 5 to 6 days to fully disappear.

Anodyne light therapy helps other blood cells besides red ones. It also helps stimulate the formation of white blood cells. And we’ve seen how important these are for a healthy immune system.

In our offices, much of this bruising is already alleviated by the use of intravenous vitamin Cacupressure, and the simple application of ice packs.

However, even with these precautions, bruising can still occur. So, we generally encourage using the Anodyne machine once or twice daily for several days following surgery.

Other Benefits

Anodyne light therapy helps other blood cells besides red ones. It also helps stimulate the formation of white blood cells. And we’ve seen how important these are for a healthy immune system.

Nearly There!

Next week, we’ll wrap-up our review of our Patient Protection Protocol. It’s been a long ride, but, like I said at the start, the journey to recovered health is too important to be taken lightly.

Always working for your best physical, dental, and emotional health,

Dr. Blanche

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Phase Three of the Huggins-Grube Protocol – Last Week’s Meridian Story


Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

I hope you enjoyed reading last week’s blog post as much as I enjoyed writing it. It’s been years since I first read Bernard Lown’s remarkable book, yet I still get goose-bumps every time I re-read his account of having witnessed open heart surgery under acupuncture.

So, my thoughts? Well, I just gave you one of them. 

Sheer marvel over the image of such a simple, unpretentious meeting of Eastern and Western medicine. I can only imagine the look of stunned disbelief on the faces of the attending physicians, as just 2 carefully placed needles effectively replace the use of general anesthesia, with a patient’s life literally hanging on the expertise of his surgeon’s hands.
 Phase Three of the Huggins-Grube Protocol – A True Meridian Story

Admittedly, Lown continues by noting that the Chinese have since admitted that acupuncture is not an apt replacement for an anesthetic in all cases. However, this admission doesn’t detract in the least from the case reported.

Secondly, we see the need for continued integration of all medical wisdom into one, balanced approach to healing. This means taking the truth wherever we find it, as we find it. 

In the specific case of biological dentistry, it is based – like all genuine medical practice – upon hard science. However, science itself is based upon facts. So, whether proof comes from a test tube in a lab or from some verifiable experience of applied meridian theory, genuine science respects and welcomes it. Period.

Thirdly, and finally, I remain ever awed by the wonder of the human body. I mean, just think about it for a moment:

  • Everybody is composed of at least nine major systems, all designed to work in non-stop, integrated harmony: skeletal, digestive, lymphatic, muscular, respiratory, endocrine, nervous, circulatory, and reproductive. Can you imagine if we had to think about each of these activities in order for them to function?

  • That same body is further composed of anywhere from 50 to 100 trillion individual cells, at least a quarter of which are red blood cells. So, in addition to those 9 major body systems to be kept working in tandem, each one of us has (or, more accurately, is) literally trillions of cells that must all work in harmony for the good of the whole body. Again, this all works on autopilot. (Look at your hand: one square centimeter alone contains about100,000 skin cells.)

I could go on and on. But I trust you see my point. We are miracles of engineering, pure and simple. And both science and medicine must respect both the miracle and the engineering.

With that, I’ll leave you for now. Look next week for a continued discussion of the particular helps we employ in our Patient Protection Protocol’s final phase.

As ever, we welcome your visits to our Scranton, Pennsylvania office. Wherever your end-of-summer travels take you, take good care.

All the best,

Dr. Blanche

Monday, August 10, 2015

((UPDATE)) Phase Three of the Huggins-Grube Protocol – A True Meridian Story



Dear friend of Centers for Healing,

After writing last week’s post on our use of acupressure here at Centers for Healing, I was reminded of a true story about an even more dramatic application of Oriental meridian theory to contemporary medical practice.

A Distinguished Cardiologist

Dr. Bernard Lown, a world renowned cardiologist, tells the story in his book, “The Lost Art of Healing. Practicing Compassion in Medicine.” Lown has the distinction of being the inventor of the modern defibrillator, now a standard fixture in cardiac units around the globe.

Lown’s story so remarkable precisely because of his status as a classically-trained, Western physician. In other words, the bias against “alternative medicine” is nearly unavoidable.

West Meets East

However, in Chapter 9, “Extraordinary Healing Techniques,” Lown gives an eyewitness account of the use of acupuncture as a substitute for anesthesia in a heart surgery performed in the People’s Republic of China in 1973.

The story is so powerful that I have to quote it directly from the book. I want you to hear it in Lown’s own words, with my emphasis in bold type:

The patient, a young man in his early twenties with a ventricular septal defect, walked into the operating room of a leading Shanghai hospital. After shaking hands with each of the eight visiting Americans, he lay down on the operating table and surgery was performed. The room was bare except for an oxygen tank, a sphygomanometer, and a primitive-looking pump oxygenator. He was draped for the operation, an intravenous was started, and a thin rubber tubing to provide oxygen was inserted in a nostril. Several acupuncture needles were then inserted in his ear and in his left wrist. After about fifteen minutes he appeared to be dozing. He was then connected to the ancient bypass machine to provide external pumping of his blood.

The surgeon was masterfully skilled and extraordinarily quick. In no time at all he had opened the chest and electrically fibrillated the heart to stop its contractions. Ventricular fibrillation is an ultrarapid chaotic rhythm in which heart pumping ceases, enabling the surgeon to have a quiet field for his work. In the absence of an external assist pumping device, the patient would die within a few minutes.

Standing at the head of the operating table, I could intimately observe the patient’s face. The entire scene was eerie and totally unreal for those of us trained in Western medicine. Several times during the operation, the patient opened his eyes and talked, though he was without any cardiac contractions. A distinguished American surgeon standing close by kept nudging me in disbelief and repeating, ‘Are you seeing what I am seeing?’ He whispered that we were being subjected to some Chinese trick of mass hypnosis.

The patient moaned only twice, each time when the surgeon encountered excessive bleeding, which he had difficulty in clamping rapidly. As the patient was surgically draped and could not see what was going on in his own chest cavity, and as the surgeon remained silent, I was mystified as to the cues the patient was picking up. When the surgeon had the situation under control, the patient relaxed as well.

As the operation was coming to an end and they were closing the chest, I began to worry about how they would revert the fibrillating heart, for no cardiac defibrillator was in sight in the technologically empty operating theater. When the thoracic cage was closed, they rolled in a vintage defibrillator, indistinguishable from the one I had introduced more than a decade earlier (see Chapter 13). They placed the electrode paddles against the chest wall and delivered an electrical discharge, which instantly restored a normal rhythm. The doctors and nurses then lined up in front of me, bowed, and said, ‘Thank you for serving the people.’ The patient sat up, once again shook hands with everyone, seated himself in a wheelchair, and was rolled into the recovery room. (pp. 130-31)

The Tale Tells Itself

Wow! I don’t know about you, but this blows me away. In fact, I’m going to save my comments (you didn’t really think I wouldn’t have any, did you?) for next week’s post.
After all, Lown’s story speaks for itself.

Meridian theory, whether applied through acupressure or acupuncture, is powerful stuff, indeed.

Until next week,

Dr. Blanche

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Phase Three of the Huggins-Grube Protocol – Acupressure

“Putting out the fire doesn’t rebuild the house.” These insightful words are from a short pamphlet called “The Assist Report.” Huggins Applied Healing published it in order to give an overview of our Patient Protection Protocol. And, the quoted sentence above goes right to the heart of its third phase.  

Inner Roadways

You’ll recall my road analogy from last week’s post. Well, the first post-operative treatment I want to discuss is all about roads. Only, they’re on the inside, so to speak.

I’m talking about what Oriental medicine calls “meridian lines.” Meridian lines are essentially the invisible pathways connecting the various key points in the body. It is thought that these key points are where a person’s vital energy is localized.

Puncture and Pressure

For thousands of years, Oriental medical practitioners have treated patients on the basis of these “vital energy points.” When thin needles are inserted into these points, the therapy is called acupuncture. On the other hand, when hand pressure is applied to these same points, the treatment is called acupressure. The general theory behind both modalities is the same. Only the practical applications differ.

Acupressure, thus, is a kind of Oriental massage.  Here at Centers for Healing, acupressure is usually made available to patients immediately following dental revision work. Dental procedures can interrupt, or “scramble,” the normalelectrical impulses that connect the body’s vital energy points. Bottom line: acupressure is able to “reintroduce” a person’s nervous system to his or her muscular system.

The Dental Meridian Chart

There’s more. If you’ve ever visited our Scranton office, you may have noticed a large chart on the wall of the waiting area. This dental meridian chart details the relationship between each tooth in a person’s mouth and a particular bodily organ. Kind of gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “We are all connected,” huh? The truth is that each one of us – before being connected with those around us – is an elaborate series of biological, chemical, and electrical interconnections. In the trillions!

I don’t know about you, but I find all of this absolutely fascinating. However, there’s way too much to say about it a single blog post, so I’ll surely be coming back to this topic in future posts. For now, you just need to know that acupressure is one of the many post-revision therapies we use at Centers for Healing.

Meanwhile, take good care, and enjoy the summer. As always, we’d love to hear from you! In other words: stay connected!

All the best,

Dr. Blanche