Winning the battle against Autoimmunity

Hello and welcome to The Functional Perspective!  My name is Salena and I am a functional medicine health and wellness practitioner with a passion to help others restore their health.  I specialize in helping those facing autoimmune challenges, especially children.

In 2014 my family was impacted by an autoimmune disease. Upon being flown to Dallas Childrens hospital, my eldest was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  This took us by complete surprise due to no family history of diabetes and after all, we ate ‘organic’, homemade foods.  As my child lay in the ICU my mission to restore health was ignited.   ‘

The Functional Perspective’ is a result of that spark.  My work is to restore health in those who are battling with a health obstacle most others think to great to overcome.

The website consists of blog posts with a variety of topics such as the all important Microbiome and the three game changing diagnostic tests for autoimmune sufferers.  There is a recipe section (with many recipes inspired by my children) as well as a page with links to research and other scientific resources.  Of course the most important page is the one with my contact info – I offer a free 15 minute no-obligation consultation.  You can also find the pricing for my services on that page.  I hope you find information to better your, or a loved one’s, health and to walk away from my site knowing there is hope for autoimmune sufferers.  I look forward to the opportunity to help you navigate the road to better health!   ~Salena

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Nacogdoches First Functional Forum Meet-up: Evolution of Pediatrics

Calling all East Texas Health Practitioners and Students!

We are excited to announce East Texas first Functional Health Meet-up.

January 22, 2018 6:30-8:30 PM SFA Education Annex Building Room 126

This meet-up is an opportunity to gather with local like-minded health professionals to discover the latest clinical research, participate in engaging conversations, and for practitioners to develop their referral networks – it takes a village to raise a child and it takes a tribe to turn our runaway healthcare system around – be a part of that tribe!

Please help us spread the word and share this invite with others! Looking forward to seeing you there 

For our first Functional Forum of 2018, we are thrilled to present: The Evolution of Pediatrics
Of all the medical specialties, Pediatrics has been the slowest to evolve due to its traditionally conservative viewpoint. However, with massive rise in chronic pediatric illness, more and more pediatricians (and parents) are looking for answers outside of the conventional box.

In this episode, we traveled across the country to meet with pediatric practices and practitioners on the cutting edge of this medical evolution.

First, we interview two sister pediatricians, Dr. Nicole Shorrock, who was featured on the June Forum: “Evolution of Neurology” and her sister, Dr. Katie Long, who practice together as part of a hospital-based practice near Sacramento, California. They share how they have been able to practice functionally inside a conventional medical system.

Next, we met with Dr. Sheila Kilbane, an integrative pediatrician based on Charlotte, North Carolina who was featured on last summer’s “Journey to 100”. Dr. Kilbane showed us around her practice and talked about antibiotics, gut heath and chronic illness.

Also featured is Kimberly Shirk, a Physician’s Assistant trained in functional and integrative medicine and member of our Practice Accelerator and Membership Practice Builder programs from Columbia, South Carolina. Kimberly has built an interdisciplinary pediatric clinic, including midwifery and functional medicine, using a low-cost direct primary care model — an evolution in the business model of integrative pediatrics!

REGISTER HERE

Incredible “Insant” Soup!

Well – I purchased another kitchen gadget, one of the latest crazes, an Instant Pot.  It is my first pressure cooker and I have been rather amazed at the results!  Today we needed some broth quick so decided to see if this new gadget could deliver as it claims… I will go ahead and let the cat out of the bag I was VERY pleased! I forgot to add salt but have to say this was the most flavorful basic broth I have had!

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

A tasty QUICK soup when you are in a pinch.


Ingredients

  • 1 Leek
  • 5-6 Celery Stalks
  • 1 Small Onion
  • 1-2 TB Ghee

Directions


1. Chop veggies
2. Pre-heat instant pot with the SAUTE setting
3. When it turned “HOT” then I added the ghee and sauteed veggies
4. Once veggies were just under being fully cooked I added water to the 1/2 mark inside the pot
5. Then chose the SOUP setting – adjusted to “LESS”
6. Closed the lid and let it do its thing!

Spring 2018 Organic Food Challenge!

Hello everyone – I have a lot of things in the works right now – one of them is as a contributor to Transcending Into Wellness: A Healthy Living Journey where my Wellness Wednesday video series takes place each week.  The videos are short videos with helpful tips and information to transforming health.

We wrapped up the year with a series Tapping Into the Body’s Innate Healing System.  I covered the five core principles to achieving health and longevity.  plant-1474807.jpg

  • Food
  • Rest
  • Activity
  • Environment
  • Stress

Each of these play a vital role in how our body deals with day to day life.  Together they work in a synergystic manner where together are more powerful than the sum of each.  Anyway…

So – in light of transforming our health we talked about putting quality food, quality fuel, in our body.  Getting that can be a challenge and when we have the vision to not just transform our health but be a catalyst to transform the health of others, growing organic foods seems to be a simple, practical and beneficial way to help spread the opportunity to access quality food in our community.

We are in the process of creating a website but as of now the challenge is on facebook – hope you can join us as we join together to support one another in this new endeavor- urban organic farming!  (whether you are new, experienced or a seasoned ‘non’ urban farmer we would love for you to join us and SPREAD the word!)

Join The 2018 Urban Organic Farm Challenge Here!

(and make homemade treats with your homegrown foods!)

plant-1474807.jpg

Simple Bone Broth

One of the core “ingredients” to most of the recipes for promoting healing include bone broth. Unfortunately most of the broths in the stores have sugar or other flavorings which can hinder our progress. Making broth is rather simple and something we can make in batches to freeze for later use. I make broth out of any type of bones – we save the carcasses from turkey, chicken and any beef we eat. I freeze the bones until I am ready to make a big batch and follow the following process:

Simple Bone Broth

Simple Bone Broth

  • Servings: varies
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Simple Bone Broth


Ingredients

  • Bones – roasted – (if not see below)
  • Filtered or distilled water
  • 1 -2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 Bunch of Celery – diced
  • 1 small Onion – diced
  • 4-6 cloves of Garlic – minced
  • Oil – Butter – Ghee (choice) for sauteing
  • Parsley (Optional garnish)

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375
  2. Roast uncooked bones for about 30 minutes (if bones are already roasted such as leftovers from a whole chicken previously baked/roasted)
  3. Add bones to large pot or slow cooker and add water until bones are completely covered – then add about 50% more water
  4. If using a pot on the stove bring to a boil , then turn down on a low simmer and simmer for 12-24 hours
  5. If using a slow cooker turn on high for 2-3 hours then on low for 24 hours (can also leave on low the entire time)
  6. After the broth is made I then saute the veggies & garlic in a large stock pot
  7. When the veggies are almost done I strain the broth into this pot with the veggies and cook on low for 6-12 hours
  8. After this round of “cooking” I will either strain out the veggies and add them to a “stir-fry” and save the broth for later recipes or a mixture of straining out some of the broth for later use and some broth with the veggies for later.

Are you ready to open the door to better health?

Mark your calendar for our upcoming FREE health and wellness seminar:

**OPEN THE DOOR TO BETTER HEALTH**

Part 1 of Functional Awareness Series hosted by The Functional Perspective and MyMD Select

CBH INSURANCE – FREE SEMINAR – December 12, 2017

Chronic illness, including autoimmune disease, continues to rise at alarming rates. In fact, the health of the new generation today is worse than health of previous generations. We have a Serious Health Crisis on our hands! In order to turn this train around we need a shift in how we approach our health.

Functional Medicine answers that call!

Explore this new paradigm of addressing the root cause of adverse health with Functional Health expert and founder of The Functional Perspective, Salena Rothenberger, CHC, CFMP and the team from MyMD Select, Dr. Jeremy Smith and Jay Marsolan, FNP-C. They will delve into the core principles of Functional Medicine, what it is and how it can help you and your family on your journey to renewed health.

Learn the science behind symptom management, the seven keys to restoring health, how the current medical model fails those with chronic illness. Most importantly learn what you can do to take charge of you and your family’s health

Date: DECEMBER 12, 2017
Cost: FREE to the public (seating limited)
Location: CBH INSURANCE
Registration is required:https://functionalhealthawareness.eventbrite.com

Common – the new Normal?

I was having a conversation the other day with a friend about health. The topic came up because her aunt recently had a stroke. The family was surprised and their reactions comprised mostly of “She is healthy, how could this happen? Sure, she is a little overweight, but she doesn’t have any problems which aren’t normal.” Then I came across this post a fellow practitioner posted this article from the New Your Times on their facebook [oh and yes, I am on facebook now 😦 ] anyway… this article: ‘Fat but Fit?’ The controversy continues

“The bottom line is that metabolically healthy obesity doesn’t exist,” said Dr. Rishi Caleyachetty, of the College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham in England, who was the lead author of the paper, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. “Obesity is not a benign condition.”

Common disease is NOT normal and healthy

 

Dr. Caleyachetty nailed it!!! It boils down to we have been taught that what is common is ‘normal’ and that equates to ‘healthy’.  The idea that ‘everyone has some sort of adverse health, there isn’t anything that can be done about it, it is just part of life to have disease’. The sad sad truth is this is a BIG LIE!  Our skyrocketing health care costs are more than enough evidence to this fallacy.   Chances are you have heard the statistics about the astronomical amounts of money we spend in the U.S. but have are among the lowest when it comes to the quality of health in our society.   Do you ever wonder what it is you can do?  How can you get to the root of your adverse health?  Where can you find the information to get your health back on track so you can live a vibrant life?

The timing of the conversation with my friend and the post from the practitioner couldn’t have come at a better time.  If you are asking yourself the above questions, you will love what I am about to share!  TODAY I am revealing a new tool which I am sharing to help others restore their health.  You can get your FREE {no obligation} health assessment below.

It takes but a few minutes to complete.  Join me on the journey as we open the door to better health and take the path which reclaims health! Are you ready?

Yes, I am ready to Open the Door to Better Health!

Be well!

~Salena

Changing what we eat is most often at the core of restoring our body to healthy function.  Once my family changed our perspective many great new foods became available for us to enjoy.  The next step was I had to start collecting recipes and ways to fix dishes with these new yummies!  The recipe below is one of the first meals which became a family staple.  Since those first days we have added a treasure of new foods and dishes.  This page contains some of our new treasures – I hope you enjoy them as much as we do.  You can also visit me on Pinterest to browse my recipe collection from our new journey.

Stir-Fry Medley

Veggies – cut them up – in small chunks – enough to fill your skillet or enough for the number you are serving

Coconut Oil or butter – enough to lightly coat the bottom of a skillet

Add veggies, a pinch of salt and maybe some seasoning – tumeric, garlic, cinnamon, mace – just what ever you are in the mood for and just how ever much looks good

Lightly saute the conglomerate of ingredients so they are NOT quite finished.  Then set them aside in a glass dish…

Then in the same pan either cook some beef/buffalo or other ground meat.  Or reheat some chicken that has been cut up into bite size pieces – Once they are cooked or reheated then add the veggies back in to finish cooking

Make a salad in the meantime, with some olive oil, salt and pepper to season to complete the Stir-Fry Medley meal

The best part is there are no “particulars” to mess up – its just throw in what ever{it has to be real food 😉  and mix it up 🙂  I know there are those of you like some of my precious friends who cringe at such a chaotic recipe as this LOL…. And I think some have argued this isn’t an actual “recipe” SO, let’s see if any of the following fit the bill for an actual recipe!

Beef Butternut Squash

civilizedcavemanbutternutHere is one of our staples this time of year (late fall/early winter)  It is easy to adapt to other winter squashes and fun to play around with the “filling” ingredients…  Such as we skip the bacon and just use ground beef or ground buffalo for the meat part of the filling … My mouth is watering as I write this post…. yummy yummy yummy!

Recipe from Civilized Caveman Cooking – Links will take you to the site!

 

Biomarkers for navigating autoimmune health challenges - DAO, LPS and Zonulin

3 Bio-markers are Potential Game Changers for Autoimmune Sufferers

This year has already flown by, I can’t believe we are in the third month already! I have many things in the works to share with you and have been eager for reliable internet service to share these fascinating diagnostic testing options with you.  Especially for those on that auto-immunity journey and those on that health journey roller coaster which seems to have wheels spinning in circles…

I’ll cut to the chase – DAO, LPS and Zonulin – Have you heard of them?  Do you know their significance?  Let me give a brief, and I mean brief, overview of what they are and why they are significant.

What are they?

DAO – Diamine Oxidase is primarily secreted in the digestive tract and helps set the stage for a healthy environment in the digestive tract.   Do you have any guesses as to one of the things which happens when someone has low DAO?  If you guessed an adverse environment with an unhealthy microbiome you guessed correct!

LPS – Lipopolysaccharide is also primarily located in the gut.  It is an endotoxin which comes about as your body is fighting bacteria. When we find this in the blood that tells us it is no longer confined in the digestive tract, rather has made its way into our system!

Zonulin – (this is one you may have heard about!) Dr. Alessio Fasano, from Italy, is responsible for discovering the role of this fascinating protein.  Simply put – Zonulin is responsible for opening the tight junctions thereby allowing ‘stuff’ to pass between the cells lining the digestive tract. (If you want to dig deeper and connect some dots on your health journey take a minute and do a quick search at Pubmed: “Fasano Zonulin” and see what turns up 🙂

zonulin illustration

What is the significance?

First, if you haven’t read about the microbiome you may want to check out this post. When our digestive tract has an unhealthy environment that sets the stage for unhealthy flora to take up residence.  In addition what is typically healthy flora can get out of balance and become overpopulated, thereby rendering this once helpful bacteria unhelpful.  Furthermore, this loops back to causing an imbalance so we are left with having an imbalance due to bad environment and a bad environment due to an imbalance – quite the ‘catch 22’ situation!

Next have you heard of antibodies?  Are you familiar with how they come about?  Again, a brief snapshot.  Antibodies are part of the second line of defense in our immune system.  SIgA is the first line involved in the elimination of ‘invaders’.  When these invaders make their way through the lining of the digestive tract(such as when Zonulin opens the door) antibodies come into the scene.  Can you see where this is headed and how this is tied to autoimmunity?

So, we have antibodies getting made and foreign invaders attaching to things where they shouldn’t and our body decides to do what it can to eliminate the offender despite the collateral damage!  It is rather fascinating how we are made!

In addition to all of this histamines and allergies come on the scene…  I said I was going to keep this brief so will leave it at that… Things start to go downhill and the circling domino effect magnifies… Autoimmunity takes hold…

zonulin related disease illustration

What can we do about abnormal findings?

Ah, the million dollar question!!!  I wish I had the answer you are looking for, the fact is there isn’t a one size fits all solution.  This is why those of us with autoimmune conditions often find ourselves spinning in circles trying this protocol and that protocol.  For instance, overall those with MS find Wahls protocol effective, others may find Autoimmune Paleo effective or perhaps SCD(Specific Carbohydrate Diet).  Some may need to tweak and eliminate FodMAPs, Histamines or Nightshades…

We find relief in one area and think we are on the road to healing then have another ‘episode’. What you do for your T1 Diabetic condition may be different than what needs to happen for my T1D son.  This is where these three tests can be very valuable! We know ‘leaky gut’ is associated with autoimmune diseases, so the challenge is to find the breach and fix it.  Is it due to low DAO?  Perhaps its an abundance of Zonulin?  What about a combination of the two?  This is where partnering with a functional practitioner is invaluable. We can help you identify patterns and nuances specific to your situation.   We have to look at all the clues given us, these three markers are just three of the many clues to your ‘health mystery’.

I would love to be able to tell you to take this probiotic, that combination of supplements and you go on your happy way to healing. But, one thing I am 10,000% certain of is we are individuals and a restoration of health must be customized!   Are there similarities and common components to the solutions?  Absolutely!!!

So, can I help you?  Most likely, but it would take looking at your health journey with a fine tooth comb! In the meantime I can recommend a few things which will encourage your body to seek homeostasis:

  • Lifestyle changes which support synchrony with circadian rhythms
  • Plenty of water
  • Real foods
  • Elimination of stress
  • Quality rest
  • Exercise
  • Laughter

The simplest way to come up with a customized plan will take one of two things:

Find a functional practitioner who is passionate about YOUR health challenges. (For instance my  primary interest is in autoimmune challenges, another practitioner may focus on cardiovascular or hormone challenges)  Many do not ‘specialize’ and that is ok, they can still help you formulate a plan!

or

Enroll in functional medicine training and put the pieces of your health back together.

Feel free to contact me with any questions or comments 🙂 And of course you can also take advantage of my free 15 min consult! Best wishes on your journey!

A few references:

Polyamine Oxidase and Diamine Oxidase Activities in Human Milk during the First Month of Lactation.
Bjelakovic L, Kocic G, Bjelakovic B, Najman S, Stojanović D, Jonovic M, Pop-Trajkovic Z.
Iran J Pediatr. 2012 Jun;22(2):218-22.
PMID: 23056889 Free PMC Article

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3446060/

 

Zonulin, a regulator of epithelial and endothelial barrier functions, and its involvement in chronic inflammatory diseases.
Sturgeon C, Fasano A.
Tissue Barriers. 2016 Oct 21;4(4):e1251384. doi: 10.1080/21688370.2016.1251384. Review.
PMID: 28123927

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/21688370.2016.1251384?journalCode=ktib20

 

Abnormal intestinal permeability and microbiota in patients with autoimmune hepatitis.
Lin R, Zhou L, Zhang J, Wang B.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2015 May 1;8(5):5153-60.
PMID: 26191211 Free PMC Article

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26191211

 

Chronic Kidney Disease Induced Intestinal Mucosal Barrier Damage Associated with Intestinal Oxidative Stress Injury.
Yu C, Wang Z, Tan S, Wang Q, Zhou C, Kang X, Zhao S, Liu S, Fu H, Yu Z, Peng A.
Gastroenterol Res Pract. 2016;2016:6720575. doi: 10.1155/2016/6720575.
PMID: 27493661 Free PMC Article

https://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/6720575

 

Concomitant Prevalence of Low Serum Diamine Oxidase Activity and Carbohydrate Malabsorption.
Enko D, Meinitzer A, Mangge H, Kriegshäuser G, Halwachs-Baumann G, Reininghaus EZ, Bengesser SA, Schnedl WJ.
Can J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2016;2016:4893501. doi: 10.1155/2016/4893501.
PMID: 28042564 Free PMC Article

https://www.hindawi.com/journals/cjgh/2016/4893501/

 

Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Middle Ear Inflammation Disrupts the cochlear Intra-Strial Fluid–Blood Barrier through Down-Regulation of Tight Junction Proteins
Jinhui Zhang, Songlin Chen, Zhiqiang Hou, Jing Cai, Mingmin Dong, Xiaorui Shi
PLoS One. 2015; 10(3): e0122572. Published online 2015 Mar 27. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0122572
PMCID: PMC4376743

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4376743/?report=reader

 

Analysis of the human monocyte-derived macrophage transcriptome and response to lipopolysaccharide provides new insights into genetic aetiology of inflammatory bowel disease.
Baillie JK, Arner E, Daub C, De Hoon M, Itoh M, Kawaji H, Lassmann T, Carninci P, Forrest AR, Hayashizaki Y; FANTOM Consortium., Faulkner GJ, Wells CA, Rehli M, Pavli P, Summers KM, Hume DA.
PLoS Genet. 2017 Mar 6;13(3):e1006641. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1006641. [Epub ahead of print]
PMID: 28263993 Free Article

http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.1006641

 

Systemic lipopolysaccharide induces cochlear inflammation and exacerbates the synergistic ototoxicity of kanamycin and furosemide.
Hirose K, Li SZ, Ohlemiller KK, Ransohoff RM. J Assoc Res Otolaryngol. 2014; 15:555–70. doi: 10.1007/s10162-014-0458-8 PMID: 24845404

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4141430/?report=classic

 

Lipopolysaccharide alters the blood-brain barrier transport of amyloid beta protein: a mechanism for inflammation in the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
Jaeger LB, Dohgu S, Sultana R, Lynch JL, Owen JB, Erickson MA, et al.  Brain Behav Immun. 2009; 23:507–17. doi: 10.1016/j.bbi.2009.01.017 PMID: 19486646

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2783557/

 

Restoration of impaired intestinal barrier function by the hydrolysed casein diet contributes to the prevention of type 1 diabetes in the diabetes-prone BioBreeding rat.
Visser JT, Lammers K, Hoogendijk A, Boer MW, Brugman S, Beijer-Liefers S, Zandvoort A, Harmsen H, Welling G, Stellaard F, Bos NA, Fasano A, Rozing J.
Diabetologia. 2010 Dec;53(12):2621-8. doi: 10.1007/s00125-010-1903-9.
PMID: 20853098 Free PMC Article

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmid/20853098/

Short hiatus…

Well hello! Wanted to touch base real quick updating you regarding my recent absence… I have been away for the last six weeks or so and ended up not having reliable internet while I was away not to mention the free-time seemed to be non-existent! I am back home now and have a lot of exciting things in the works 🙂 Hopefully will have some time in the near future to update you with some of the intriguing studies and information which I have come across in my recent course of study!