Nutrition, PEMF and many other rarely discussed approaches can help Traumatic Brain Injury

Here is a snippet of some helpful research that I do to help those with concussion, post concussion or suspected traumatic brain injury. it is far more common than you think!

This article here is eye opening:

Pop in and I can help.

Andrea

Nutr Neurosci. 2018 Feb;21(2):79-91. doi: 10.1080/1028415X.2016.1236174. Epub 2016 Oct 5.

Supplements, nutrition, and alternative therapies for the treatment of traumatic brain injury.

Lucke-Wold BP1,2, Logsdon AF2, Nguyen L2, Eltanahay A3, Turner RC1, Bonasso P2, Knotts C1, Moeck A4, Maroon JC5, Bailes JE6, Rosen CL1.

Abstract
Studies using traditional treatment strategies for mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) have produced limited clinical success. Interest in treatment for mild TBI is at an all time high due to its association with the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy and other neurodegenerative diseases, yet therapeutic options remain limited. Traditional pharmaceutical interventions have failed to transition to the clinic for the treatment of mild TBI. As such, many pre-clinical studies are now implementing non-pharmaceutical therapies for TBI. These studies have demonstrated promise, particularly those that modulate secondary injury cascades activated after injury. Because no TBI therapy has been discovered for mild injury, researchers now look to pharmaceutical supplementation in an attempt to foster success in human clinical trials. Non-traditional therapies, such as acupuncture and even music therapy are being considered to combat the neuropsychiatric symptoms of TBI. In this review, we highlight alternative approaches that have been studied in clinical and pre-clinical studies of TBI, and other related forms of neural injury. The purpose of this review is to stimulate further investigation into novel and innovative approaches that can be used to treat the mechanisms and symptoms of mild TBI.

KEYWORDS:
Alternative therapies; Chronic symptoms; Mild traumatic brain injury; Secondary injury cascades; Supplementation

Full link here:

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Concussion and Traumatic Brain injury, could PEMF help?

Here is a very important article on Concussion and Traumatic Brain injury with a recommended suggestion of PEMF as a supportive therapy.

I believe that creatine and omega 3 may also be of benefit and would include bioavailable turmeric in this list. For more significant neural and inflammation sequalae which are common more complex nutrition protocols can be added. I have touched on the research in this blog here. Contact me for more information.

Please read on here:

If you are interested to book PEMF sessions contact me:

 

Coaches corner podcast getting rough and gels 101

So our latest podcast on Endurance Lab coaches corner is available: Getting rough in a group, how to practice for this and own your space and then the main topic of gels; what are they, how do we use them, should we use them in training and what about natural foods?

Check out our complete podcast playlist here:

On the coaches corner we always advocate using real foods in training and in our diets when possible (except for race nutrition practice, which is important). Gels, the better formulated ones do play a role in racing. The better ones are formulated to optimise absorption and oxidation rates, to be easily carried, to minimize gastro issues and to not taste too sweet. Many also contain electrolytes and some contain amino acids and caffeine. This is what science says… for most this works.

Do I like that we take straight sugars when the research regarding health says otherwise? Well an ironman isn’t a normal event it is far and fasts and long!

Most people’s stomach digestive function is poor due to sympathetic nervous system drive, and pace and practical run and bike issues make it hard to eat solids and real foods and hot humid weather or body heat compounds these issues; the result being we suffer! Altered digestive function will also create microbial fermentation so gas and wind and more serious digestive side effects may occur with high fructose or fruit products.

So yes for the purposes of a race do what works for you. Slower paced racing can tolerate more solids and real foods but the faster intensities due to how our bodies function will not be able to tolerate foods requiring complex digestion and so gels and liquids are superior.

What do I do? In the podcast I mentioned that my goal for future races is to use more gels. Not because I am a fan of straight sickly gels but because after 4 years of exploring combos of real foods and products like drinks and bars I feel that gels do get the sugar where you need it and fast. And I will benefit from this in a race scenario. For all training I choose real food. I have a box of products that are reserved for racing and race nutrition practice and this only gets opened on occasion. At all other times I let real food do the work and this is what I recommend most athletes do.

Honey and maple syrup are often discussed. What do I think?

Well… there is a lot of fake adulterated honey out there and maple “type” syrups are not real maple syrup so first check are you buying the real deal. Even here in Ireland most honey on the shelf is mixed source from EU and non EU states.

Honeygate: How Europe is being flooded with fake honey: here

The scourge of honey fraud: here
Choosing Maple Syrup: What Grade Should You Buy? here

Secondly honey can be high in fructose and this may create significant gastrointestinal issues due to its osmotic load in the gut and furthermore fructose is metabolised by the liver and so is slower to get to the muscles than glucose and maltodextrin. This is what science says; if you want to try a more natural approach try it before you let the research sway you. I would like to think that our bodies do deal better with natural foods.

Maple syrup that is REAL has a slightly better glucose to fructose ratio. There is nothing wrong with these options but despite being natural they may not suit everyone. But are they better for you; well of course! But you want to race a fast race yeah?

Gels are a means to a fast end… choose the best ones, reserve for racing except for race fuel practice and for the rest of the time EAT REAL FOOD

I hope you enjoy the podcast; I had a few tongue-tied moments but hey that’s me… I’m all in my head!

Andrea x

PEMF for athletes

Kona ironman nutrition

Hi folks

Just a reminder nudge that in the clinic healing therapies are available, either hands on (yep, I also do this – its a cool way of listening to see what the body needs in the moment) and also through energy frequencies on the PEMF device.

Here is a super cool article explaining a bit more about the use of and benefits of PEMF to athletes:

ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE

Do every thing you can to support your body in its journey to optimal performance.

Success is based on all the small percentages.

Andrea

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Our first coaches corner where you can see us!

We had super fun today on coaches corner; our first time using Skype and I sense that the competition is on now for best hat and mug combo. Mitch won today; with Ian in sensible grown up clothes coming in a firm second.

We have built up a real treasure trove of resources for cyclists and triathletes; so if you are interested in having a listen to other podcasts you can find there here to stream in any format that suits you best and also here on YouTube. I have also detailed many of the podcasts here: (I may have missed a few).

Here is today’s awesome podcast 🙂

Today we discussed:

  • Early (warning) signs of health crashing and tips about what to do to prevent getting sick and return to full form as quickly as possible.
  • Indoor vs outdoor powermeter and what to do with your numbers – also, if you do not have a PM outdoors – how to pace yourself?
  • Theia offers words of wisdom on “failure- or is it?” I felt like she was speaking to my soul given the personal context for me; thanks Theia! Her words are worth listening to. I really enjoyed the tip on  “what am I going to give in a race” and I learnt that for me the importance of holding my health sometimes has far greater meaning in the context of my work and home life. I need to be healthy for what matters; and crushing this in a race just isn’t worth it.
  • Concept of a “Floor” in our Training Peaks numbers – and how to use it.
  • This week in the LAB.

As promised here are my words of advice regarding what to look out for and what to do when your health starts to veer off track:

Warning signs:

I have kept it light hearted; if you wish to read the official consensus on Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment of the Overtraining Syndrome: Joint Consensus Statement of the European College of Sport Science and the American College of Sports Medicine click here and another topic close to this and equally concerning is relative energy deficiency in sport and here is the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Consensus Statement on Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S): 2018 update.

Normal warning signs and symptoms that I see when training stress starts to ramp up are the following – without getting too in-depth!

Respiratory tract:

  • Allergies and asthma
  • Sinus infections
  • Head colds
  • Sore/ tickly throats
  • Constant cough
  • If really unlucky chest infections or pneumonia and viral conditions (that don’t need an antibiotic) worsening into bacteria complicated infections (that may need an antibiotic).

Gastrointestinal tract:

  • IBS type symptoms
  • Looser stools
  • Greater difficulty managing nutrition and feeling like food isn’t digesting well
  • Reflux and indigestion
  • More frequent food poisoning / gastritis incidents
  • Poor nutrient absorption – iron and B12 deficiency

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Two great website resources!

click here folks: http://burnfatnotsugar.com

and here: https://optimisingnutrition.com/2018/03/17/energy-density/

Remember these mantras:

  • Keep it real (food).
  • Be environmentally aware and ethically conscious.
  • How can I make this meal better? Do what you can and then go one step better.
  • Preparation makes a big difference in our success.
  • Have I earned it with activity?
  • Become a master of your emotions; eating them away rarely helps.
  • Food builds you, heals you, powers your brain and body, recovers you, fuels you, protects you from illness, sustains you for the long-haul. The right food is life changing (and so is the wrong food).

Andrea x

 

How to eat

Be curious:

My title of How to eat implies that I know all the answers to the complex questions of what is the perfect diet and how to eat. The straight up simple answer (from my experience anyhow) is that there is no one absolute and perfect way to eat. To think so is daft and to argue so is closed-minded. How can one diet at all times and phases of life work for so many culturally and geographically diverse people?

We are dynamic beings in an ever changing world, with multiple ‘things’ influencing our health and homeostatic balance at all times; our environment is constantly changing, our stress levels fluctuate alongside our ability to tolerate “stress”, and alongside this the trillions of cells in our gut are in constant dynamic flux alongside us – the beauty of symbiosis. We are complex, food is complex, and health is complex!

I think it is best to say: get curious, learn to be intuitive, take people’s big claims of knowing the definitive answers like a pick and mix adding what you intuitively agree with to your health strategy. Try things but don’t cling blindly to them; test them out and see where it gets you.

Learn about your body, your ancestry, your environment from the ground up: the soil, wild plants, what you can grow yourself in a vegetable plot, local agriculture, farmers markets and the whole local supply chain. Learn about the food our oceans and rivers provide. Get to know your food likes and dislikes, be inquisitive about your food cravings and mostly, be flexible because our health needs also change over time.

Veggies from my colleague Ginny Ross’s garden. Ginny manages to juggle a busy practice with a phenomenal veg garden #itcanbedone! http://www.limericksportstherapy.com/

There are many theories proposed about the cause of our current health and obesity epidemics. I think food and nutrition, activity levels and weight, genetics and environment are very complex and interrelated issues. They cannot be explained by just one theory: we are mind, body, emotions and the memory of all events in our lifetimes. Our health even extends beyond our own control and experiences as research shows us that genes are influenced by the stress our mothers experienced before and during pregnancy, what we were fed as an infant and even what our mothers and father ate in the preconception and pregnancy period. Amazing! Generational trauma can also influence our health.

Some things we can change, some we can improve; the rest we cannot worry about and all of us can do our best to nurture and nourish our bodies and minds.

A few things I would pay attention to are food volume (we eat too much), food processing such as refined and high sugar carbohydrates, heat processed fats, poor quality or burnt charred protein; food (and health supplement) quality, excessive use and hence intake of food additives, pesticides, artificial sweeteners, herbicides, etc; our environment and exposure to endocrine disrupters, heavy metals (e.g. amalgams, water quality, food quality, local industry) and carcinogenic substances; medication use and its impact on our homeostatic balance in addition to the gut microbiome; gut health especially in relation to food quality and also foreign travel, stress management, sleep, exercise and movement and our emotional / psychological health.

Our bodies health relies on a delicate balance of so many factors.

A healthy body is resilient, resistant to illness and infections, and adaptive; but there are only so many insults that it can take before it all starts to spiral into a mess.

The sooner you pay attention and make changes whilst removing trigger causes, then the better.

Ethical dilemmas:

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