Most people have a desire to live life to the fullest with a combination of quantity and quality.
There are many parameters that may determine how long you live, however,this short article presents the findings of five researchers who identified three simple tests you can do at home to measure your ability to add years to your life.
The medical paper published in the British Medical Journal in 2014 revealed a 13 year study where they took 1,355 men and 1,411 women in 1999 when they were 53 years old and then checked to see who was alive and well 13 years later in 2012.
The following are the three tests that were evaluated:
Standing on one leg with your eyes closed for 10 seconds or longer
Having a strong grip
Being able to stand up and sit back down in a chair many times in a minute.
According to the researchers of this paper, these tests clearly represented tell-tale signs of longevity.
Perform well in all three tests at age 53 or so and you should be healthy and vibrant 13 years later, when you are 66.
Researchers from University College London estimate that a 53 year old who can complete these tests successfully is up to 5 times more likely to be alive and well at 66 than someone who couldn’t complete the tests or who did them poorly.
There were far higher death rates among those who failed to complete the tasks.
Officially the tests are called:
The Chair Test (Standing up and sitting down in a chair 39 times in a minute for a man, and 36 times for a woman)
The balance test (standing on one leg for 10 seconds or longer with eyes closed)
The grip test (ability to apply a pressure of up to 54.5 kg or 120 pounds)
Cooper R1, Strand BH, Hardy R, Patel KV, Kuh D.Physical capability in mid-life and survival over 13 years of follow-up: British birth cohort study. BMJ. 2014 Apr 29;348:g2219
Based on progressive research we find that what we think about and what we feel have far-ranging effects on our immune system.
One important part of our immune system includes the natural killer cell or NK cells. These are a type of lymphocyte and an important player in the war on invading bad microbes and mounting an immune attack to combat these bad microbes. NK cells are known to be protective against cancer. Some studies have documented that the less active your NK cells are the more rapid cancer progression and the more it spreads throughout the body.
And guess what?
These important NK cells actually respond to your mood.
The most important emotion to boost these NK cells is laughter.
When you are feeling good, optimistic and happy your NK cells multiply exponentially!
If you are a known pessimist, there is still hope for you.
A study done at the University of California showed that actors who spent time performing depressing movie scenes had a decreased immune responsiveness. On the other hand actors who performed roles where they were uplifting, had an increased immune responsiveness.
So the moral of the story is something called, Fake it till you make it. Yes, even if you don’t feel happy, at least act like you do! Your body’s immune system will reward you for it.
Here is a good punch list to improve your mood and of course boost your NK cells:
Watching funny movies
Making music or listening to uplifting music
Coloring in books
Walking in the woods
Going to a comedy show
Spending time with good uplifting friends
Something as simple as taking a soaking bath with relaxing herbs.
(Here’s how your health problems could be all your mom’s fault.)
“Leaky gut” is a fascinating story, and understanding it might change your health forever. As a society, we suffer from a health epidemic caused mainly by the bacteria that grow in your intestines. There are many different ways this problem can present itself, but to simplify, we’ll just call it “leaky gut.”
Leaky Gut can cause Intestinal Symptoms and Extra-Intestinal Symptoms (problems that aren’t directly related to digestion).
Abdominal pain and cramping
Concentration and learning disabilities
Rashes (such as eczema)
Irritability and mood swings
That’s a lot of health problems!
What is Leaky Gut?
Your body is made of cells… about 37 TRILLION of them. Also inside your body are “symbiotic microbes (bacteria).” These are bacteria that can’t live without you—and you can’t live without them! There are about ten times as many of these microbes in your body as there are cells. The average person has about 5 POUNDS of these bacteria, mainly in the small intestine. Your body is continually rebuilding itself. Your body will replace or rebuild most of its 37 trillion cells every three months. For this, your body needs a LOT of replacement parts for cells. It gets almost all of these by breaking down the cells in the food you eat into parts (called “nutrients”), putting those parts into the blood, and then assembling the replacement cells it needs from these repurposed food cell parts. Once you understand this, food takes on a decidedly different level of importance! The thing is, your digestive system can’t break food cells down into nutrients; only the microbes can do this. So, the bacteria in your small intestine produce 100% of your body’s replacement parts. Also, these intestinal bacteria are the source of 75% of your immune system. Leaky gut: a condition in which gaps in your intestinal walls start to loosen, making it easier for larger substances, such as bacteria, toxins, and undigested food particles, to pass across the intestinal walls into your bloodstream.
Leaky gut occurs when the intestinal bacteria become damaged and unhealthy. If this happens, it can create immune system malfunctions. The biggest immune system problem it can cause is inflammation. Inflammation can lead to joint pain, rashes, muscle pain, and fatigue. There is a direct connection between the digestive system and the brain, each influencing the other. Leaky gut can create anxiety, depression, concentration and learning difficulties, memory problems, and “brain fog.” Leaky gut can play havoc with your digestive system absorbing nutrients correctly, leading to many different health problems.
Causes of Leaky Gut
You get your intestinal bacteria initially from your mother when you’re in the birth canal. As a fetus, you don’t have any bacteria in your gut. So, if your mother had unhealthy bacteria in HER gut, that’s what you got when you were born. This problem is even worse if you were a C-section. Studies have shown that C-section babies miss receiving this good microbial bacteria at birth. Even if you lucked into healthy intestinal bacteria as a child, your gut bacteria has been under constant attack. Antibiotics cause damage. Food additives often cause damage to your bacteria, as does overeating sugar and processed carbohydrates (bread, rice, pasta). A diet high in processed foods (low in nutrients) can worsen your gut health. Yeast is naturally present in your gut, but an overgrowth of yeast can contribute to the problem. One of the most common problems causing leaky gut is allergies. Leaky gut CAUSES allergies, and allergies make leaky gut worse. This self-reinforcing cycle is a likely cause of many cases of adult-onset leaky gut and adult-onset allergies. Allergies create inflammation, and in combination with the inflammation from leaky gut, we have a perfect storm to cause more inflammation and sometimes auto-immune conditions. (Autoimmune is where the body’s immune system attacks the body itself instead of invaders. Common autoimmune conditions are: rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, celiac disease, MS, type 1 diabetes, and many others).
When I began to practice in the ’90s, I saw plenty of leaky-gut-type problems, but only in a moderate number of my patients. For the past decade, 95%+ of every patient through my door has had significant to severe leaky gut indications. It’s become an epidemic.
What you can do:
Eat protein and veggies, limit carbs and eliminate sugars.
Avoid processed foods and food additives, preservatives, and colors.
Avoid antibiotics (soaps and drugs) unless absolutely necessary.
Eat plenty of high-fiber foods.
Don’t take NSAIDs (like ibuprofen).
Eat fermented foods and take good probiotics.
Professional Leaky Gut Solutions
In my practice, I see mainly patients with long-term severe chronic health problems. In most of these cases, you can see that leaky gut and its destruction of the immune system will be a significant factor. Every case is different, but here’s a typical lineup to help a patient with severe gut and immune problems:
Gut problems cause food sensitivities. The first step is to use acupressure techniques to desensitize the most common food sensitivities.
Gut problems create food sensitivities with IgG antibodies. These are delayed reaction sensitivities and can cause many different health problems on a three-day delay (so you can never figure out what food is the problem). Using a simple blood test, I can test hundreds of foods and temporarily eliminate those needed to reduce gut stress.
Carefully testing for the needed supplements to help support and rebuild the damaged gut and its supporting systems is crucial.
Diet changes to stop stressing the gut and immune system are implemented right away in these cases.
Once the gut is beginning to heal (by reducing stress from allergies, sensitivities and diet), it will often be necessary to use acupressure hormone treatments to resolve long-term stress on either the adrenal glands or the digestive system.
If you understand what causes hot flashes, you will have the basics to understand some of the most common problems caused by perimenopause and menopause.
If you don’t have experience with hot flashes, here’s what happens:
Hot flashes can last from a few seconds to ten minutes. They start with a sudden rush of warmth spreading through your chest, neck, and face. Your heart rate will become rapid with a feeling of anxiety. Your skin will appear red and blotchy, and you may sweat throughout your upper body. As the hot flash lets up, you may feel chilled from the sweat. When this happens in your sleep, you wake to all these symptoms, plus wet pajamas, which must be changed—often while you are freezing from being soaked. NOTE: The above should be required reading for husbands who have no clue what you are experiencing.Hot flashes can range from a mild nuisance up to a significant health problem. They can happen any time of day or night and can cause long-term sleep problems. Most women who have hot flashes experience them at least daily. On average, you’ll deal with hot flashes for seven to ten years, starting with perimenopause or menopause.
Hot flashes occur because of changes in your estrogen levels. As you approach and move through menopause, your ovaries reduce the output of two hormones: progesterone and estrogen. It’s the lowered estrogen that’s responsible for hot flashes. Low estrogen causes the hypothalamus (a hormone gland in your brain that does many things, including controlling your thermostat) to become sensitive to tiny body temperature changes. If your super-sensitive hypothalamus decides your body is too warm, it can initiate a chain reaction of events to cool you off: the hot flash.
Adrenal glands to the rescue!
Healthy adrenal glands can often make up a part of the estrogen production lost from the ovaries during menopause. Sadly, our society has an epidemic of exhausted adrenal glands, which has produced millions of miserable menopausal women.
What stresses adrenal glands?
Eating sugary foods, processed carbs (bread, rice, pasta), wine and alcohol, fruit juices, and too much fruit.
Eating on an irregular schedule and skipping meals.
Burning the candle at both ends—a high-stress lifestyle.
Being sedentary—not getting enough activity or exercise.
Reading this list, you can see why adrenal insufficiency is an epidemic in our society!
What to do, and the order to do it in!
If you want to improve your hot flashes, the most important thing to do is take brisk walks for 30 minutes or more (or equivalent) at least every other day. Then, the second most important thing to do is stop raising your blood sugar. Here’s the list of adrenal “repair” actions:
Stop raising your blood sugar level (stop eating cake, candy, cookies, soda, wine and cut way back on bread, rice, pasta, and white potatoes). Read details HERE.
Don’t skip meals. Eat something every four hours, and eat within 1 ½ hours of waking in the morning.
Do at least 30 minutes of brisk walking (or equivalent) at least every other day.
Get good sleep! (Set a stable bedtime, wind down for an hour before bed, avoid blue screens near bedtime.)
When is the best time to start helping your adrenal glands to become healthier? Many years ago! But if you’re in trouble now and it’s possibly because of your adrenals, there’s a lot of improvement available. Get started with the actions listed, and talk to me if you need more help.
I have many adrenal and sex hormone solutions to help with your perimenopause or menopause problems. Are you interested in more information? Fill out the form (link below), and I’ll be happy to talk to you (at no charge) to see what help you might need. Another good idea: read my book Your Hormones in Harmony. It was written just for you!
Talk to me! Everyone needs an individual program to improve their health. I can help you find out precisely what YOU need to do to improve your hormone balance and reduce your health problems from menopause.
I’ve completed two weeks of treatments. During this time my hot flashes are completely gone. It is amazing that I’ve had hot flashes for approximately two years and only after two weeks I don’t have any. Thank you Dr. Billiot for eliminating my hot flashes. — S.J.
I Sleep Soundly
Years of going night after night with being wakened by hot flashes and night sweats had left me exhausted, wondering where, how and if I would ever have relief. Since focused treatment on the sex hormones – estrogen, progesterone, etc., I have gradually gotten relief with each treatment. Now I only experience a hot flash and night sweat occasionally. I sleep soundly and wake up easily. My mind is clear and I just feel good in general. Wow – what a difference! I thought I would never get such relief naturally, knowing my body is healing itself is reassuring about this method of treatment. Acupressure Hormone Treatments rock! —D.Y.