Chiropractic Works with Dr. Birk

Low-Fat Dairy Benefits are a Big Fat Myth!

Posted: May 29, 2018
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

It’s probably not news to you that the benefits of including dairy products in your diet are questionable; or that dairy has been associated with all kinds of health problems in children and adults, from weight gain and diabetes through to heart diseases and cancer. But how about low-fat dairy actually encouraging weight gain? That is the complete reverse of what it says on the tin! 

The ‘fat makes you fat’ school of thought has been promoted by most western governments, with low fat diets recommended almost universally by health authorities. Proponents of this view cite the high fat content of fast food and the overweight nature of many of its consumers as evidence that high fat diets are harmful; this and the modern obsession with high cholesterol places fat firmly in the crosshairs of many doctors and dieticians. 

But is it really the fat content of our food that is the main problem? Critics of the view point to the high fat diets of Eskimos, for example, amongst whom heart disease and obesity is virtually unknown. There is also evidence that dairy products stripped of their natural fats and fatty acid profiles actually promote harmful weight gain. Not only this; they increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes and other chronic diseases. How can this be? 

A series of studies conclusively show that low- and non-fat dairy products promote ‘metabolic disease’, otherwise known as the ‘metabolic syndrome’. 

‘Metabolic disease’ is considered to be the underlying condition that leads to many of the chronic diseases and conditions of modern man including obesity, diabetes and heart disease. These diseases as well as their precursors such as high cholesterol and insulin resistance, were all found to be directly associated with low- and non-fat dairy consumption in an analysis of 16 studies co-authored by Dr. Stephen Guyenet. Interestingly, full-fat dairy consumption was associated with a decreased risk of all of these conditions: the complete reverse of what we would expect if we believed the official health guidelines. 

Contained in dairy fat are important nutrients like fat-soluble vitamins and numerous fatty acids which aid digestion and provide protection against gut and cardiovascular degradation. These are removed during processing into low-fat varieties. One of the main fatty acids in dairy fat is butyrate. This provides energy to cells in the colon and protects against inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract. It has shown potential for treating Crohn’s disease sufferers for instance. However, butyrate is not present in the non-fat dairy versions. 

Another of the fatty acids found in dairy fat, trans-palmitoleic acid, can help in regulating blood cholesterol levels and also modulates healthy insulin levels, which reduces the risk of diabetes and the metabolic syndrome. These are two of several important fatty acids found in dairy that have proven health benefits; so why are people being encouraged to consume the low fat versions that offer very little in nutritional value and can cause the reverse effect of what they intend? The scientific evidence of low-fat dairy helping to reduce weight is just not there and it may actually be depriving people of nutrients that their bodies need.

While there are plenty of people who maintain that dairy products are not required in the human diet at all, other than for babies drinking human milk not the milk of an animal, the case for low fat dairy is even more dubious. Most chiropractors and natural wellness practitioners recommend dairy products which are sourced organically from grass-fed animals which are treated humanely, as they may provide an important source of nutrients in a balanced diet. If you have additional questions about what kind of dairy we recommend you can always contact our clinic in Woodbridge directly!

Breathing Easier - Natural Wellness or Drugs for Asthma Treatment?

Posted: April 17, 2018
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Health sections of news websites have given plenty of attention to the steroid-based inhalers given to children in the fight against growing asthma levels; but little attention is given to the risks or complications associated with them. Nor are there many column inches devoted to alternatives or supplementary forms of treatment. Research into natural spinal procedures such as chiropractic adjustments for the correction of structural abnormalities like the ones you receive at Atlantis Wellness Center has shown potential for easing asthma as well as other common chronic conditions on the rise worldwide. 

Asthma is a common, chronic inflammatory disease that affects the airways, causing the muscles around the airway walls to tighten and the lining to inflame. This restricts the flow of air and causes breathing problems and a build up of mucus or phlegm can worsen the situation. Nobody knows exactly what causes this, though some environmental triggers are known (such as air pollutants and chemicals, smoke, pollen, animal hair and dust mites), and diet and family history of allergies are thought to play an important role in it. 

Around 235 million people worldwide have asthma. In the past 35 years, the prevalence of pediatric asthma has increased more than 50% and mortality more than 70%. 

For the past few decades asthma in adults and children has been treated mainly with salbutamol-based inhalers, the most common of which is Ventolin. These are known as 'beta2-adrenoceptor agonists (SABA)' drugs and work by relaxing muscles in the air passages of the lungs, keeping the airways open and quickly making it easier to breathe. These drugs have reduced asthma deaths and hospital visits though they are not suitable for everyone - for instance, diabetes sufferers. Also, it has been questioned whether excessive use of such drugs may contribute to the increased morbidity and mortality of the condition. 

Since the 1990s, such medications used at the onset of an attack are often combined with longer term, preventative medicines known as 'corticosteroids', also administered using inhalers. These are frequently prescribed to children diagnosed with asthma. A group of medical professionals is now warning about the role of these inhalers in stunting growth in children. Two comprehensive and systematic reviews of almost 50 scientific studies on the issue, the results of which were published in The Cochrane Library journal, show that growth in children is reduced by around 0.5 cm (0.2 inch) in the first treatment year. 

Linjie Zhang, of the Federal University of Rio Grande in Brazil, who led the review, said: 

"The evidence... suggests that children treated daily with inhaled corticosteroids may grow approximately half a centimeter less during the first year of treatment." 

The team do stress that the slowdown of growth is not as severe in subsequent years and that the effects can be minimized by lowering the dose. They conclude that the benefits of steroid-based inhalers still outweigh the risks. However, this does prompt the question of whether there are any viable alternatives or supplementary approaches out there, without the undesirable side effects. 

More evidence is coming to light about the long-reaching health benefits of natural spinal procedures you receive at Atlantis such as chiropractic, massage and acupuncture. These have long been suspected and theorized about, since the very early days of modern scientific spinal work. However, funding to provide clinical proof of these benefits has been in relatively short supply compared to the seemingly bottomless funds available for research into medications. 

Chiropractic, acupuncture, yoga, hypnosis, massage, and relaxation have all suggested some potential in randomized clinical trials as possible supplementary measures in the management of chronic asthma. In a Danish survey from 1989 it was reported that many children with chronic asthma receive spinal work, and that 92 percent of parents consider this treatment beneficial. One of the more recent studies into spinal work and asthma dates to 2000, when a team of researcher based in Minnesota tried to determine if spinal work in addition to optimal medical management improved the conditions of children with asthma. Their findings were published in the Journal of Manipulative Physiology Therapy. 

The study considered 36 patients aged 6 to 17 years with mild and moderate persistent asthma; they were administered 20 spinal procedures during a 3-month intervention phase. They were randomly assigned either active spinal work or sham spinal work and this was received in addition to their standardized ongoing medical management. 

During the study, the researchers measured pulmonary function, quality of life, asthma severity, and improvement, amongst other things. It found that, after 12 weeks, there was little or no change to pulmonary function; however patients rated their quality of life significantly higher, with more activity possible and a big reduction in asthma severity reported. The overall improvement rating corresponded to 50 percent to 75 percent and this was maintained in a follow up study a year later. The role of chiropractic and natural wellness as a replacement for or supplement to modern medications, perhaps with a view to reducing dosages (and thereby, in the case of asthma, reducing the detrimental growth-inhibiting effects) certainly warrants more coverage and further study.

Drugs can have dramatic side effects.. Is the risk really worth it?

Posted: March 12, 2018
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

When you take a drug, any sort of drug, you must know that you are taking a risk with your health. Sometimes the risk you take is huge and sometimes only very slight, but it is a risk nonetheless. The same is true for surgery. I have always aggressively opposed spinal surgery and the taking of drugs for tackling physical pain. I often attract anger from the medical system, but I know I will help a lot of people too. I cannot sit by idly when evidence is collecting (and has been collecting for many decades now) that surgery and drugs, although very useful in emergency situations, do absolutely nothing whatsoever to restore health.

I am an enthusiastic researcher and recently came across a newspaper article from October 7th 1906, the paper I refer to is "Collier's - the national weekly". In it they wrote an article entitled The Great American Fraud. Here is an excerpt:

"Gullible America will spend this year some seventy-five millions of dollars in the purchase of patent medicines. It will swallow huge quantities of alcohol, an appalling amount of opiates and narcotics, a wide assortment of varied drugs, ranging from powerful and dangerous heart depressants to insidious liver stimulants; and, far in excess of all other ingredients, undiluted fraud."

109 years later how much has changed? World leading advertiser and advertising copywriter Dan Kennedy says:

"Remember, always, that virtually all research supporting prescription drugs, surgical procedures, medical technology, and anti-alternative health information is bought and paid for by the prescription drug companies and equipment manufacturers, even though the money may be laundered through impressive sounding foundations, celebrated academic institutions and prestigious hospitals. Whatever you read that is anti-nutrition, anti-nutritional supplements, anti-alternative health in newspapers and in magazines - including the magazines put out by the major non-profit associations that exist for each disease, or see on TV newscasts, has been produced and provided with money from companies for whom those alternatives are threats."

So when I found out about a study that shows that a commonly available prescription drug is associated with a 91% increased relative risk of cardiovascular death I feel like I have to tell you about it. That drug is diclofenac and you'd better think things through carefully before taking it. Another popular drug, "ibuprofen", so popular in fact that my spell checker actually thinks it's a word, increases your risk of fatal and nonfatal stroke by 29%.Both the above figures by the way are in healthy individuals, and therefore, I could never recommend the use of drugs unless it is an absolute emergency.

Whenever you have a symptom, that's not an emergency symptom, always seek a natural solution first. There are many non-medical interventions that are more effective, completely safe, and most importantly, leave you in a better state of health after you've done them. Yes that includes spinal procedures such as chiropractic but this is not the only natural intervention which has proved to be effective. Massage, acupuncture, walking, meditating, eat healthy and stroking a pet are examples of others.

Spinal Decompression Therapy vs. Surgery

Posted: February 7, 2018
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

For patients with severe conditions such as pinched nerves, bulging disc, herniated discs, acute lower back pain, severe sciatica etc.. their family doctor may go to extremes and recommend surgery to try and fix the issue once they have exhausted all pain medications they can possibly prescribed. The problem with this, is that it can leave many patients confused and stuck in a position where they feel they may have no where else to turn.

At Atlantis Wellness Center, we see severe conditions on a daily basis and strive to ensure our patients avoid taking such extremes to get their life back. Spinal Decompression Therapy is a non-surgical therapy that causes the relief of pressure on one or many pinched nerves (neural impingement) of the spinal column. Studies have shown that Spinal Decompression is both safe and effective. A recent study studied 94 patients who had pain in various levels of severity and the pain in all patients after spinal decompression was greatly reduced and no undesirable effects were evident. A second study designed to report the effectiveness and safety of spinal decompression followed 18 patients as they underwent 20 treatments over a six week period. Again, pain levels dropped considerably and no significant unfavorable events or safety issues were reported.

Typically, doctors will recommend trying various pain medications which truly only help to mask the symptoms rather than providing any type of cure. Medications are also associated with many types of risks and side effects.Of the medications prescribed for lower back pain, the most common are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, known as NSAIDs. Unlike spinal decompression, these drugs carry significant risks such as:

  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Heartburn
  • Dizziness
  • Rash
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Gas
  • Vomiting

More serious side effects include:

  • Allergic reactions
  • Bleeding, ulcers
  • Perforation of the stomach or intestines
  • Liver damage
  • Kidney problems, including kidney failure
  • Life-threatening bleeding

Even such advice as bed rest can cause problems. These problems include:

  • Muscle atrophy
  • Heart and lung weakness
  • Bone mineral loss
  • Blood clots

Of all available options, surgery is the most dangerous, the most expensive and has the lowest success rate. Surgery also has the longest total recovery time and is the most painful treatment option. The failure rate of surgery for back pain and neck pain is very high. In Canada and the U.S alone 200,000 patients undergo lumbar spine surgery every year. On average, approximately 53 percent of all lumbar spine disc surgeries fail to relieve symptoms. Surgery also comes with various risks such as:

  • Failed back surgery syndrome
  • Infection
  • Nerve damage
  • Deterioration of general heath
  • Post-operative complications

Because spinal decompression does not involve any of the risks listed above, for patients there is really little to lose and so much to gain- for example, getting your life back! Our office Atlantis Wellness Center has seen great results and success rates and we are proud of all of our patients who stuck it through and avoided getting back surgery. To learn more about spinal decompression and if you're a good candidate for this therapy, feel free to give our office a call at anytime and we would happy to assist you.

Spinal Care Alone May Ease Non-Musculoskeletal Problems

Posted: January 8, 2018
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Spinal care just like that delivered here at Atlantis Chiropractic and Wellness in Woodbridge, represents a more focused attempt by doctors of natural health care to tackle musculoskeletal problems in patients, but it seems the effects of the care can go well beyond easing pain.

More evidence is emerging that spinal care alone is enough to produce a positive response in the related visceral conditions of musculoskeletal pain, and in this article we look at the potential of the treatment to produce positive relief for such conditions in patients.

Since the modern emergence of chiropractic care in the late 1800s, chiropractors have dealt with more problems and conditions than just aching or painful backs; the scope has spread out from treating pain itself to include treatment for other ailments caused by suspected interference with nerves, leading to diseases of the organs all initially caused by spinal abnormalities. Perhaps in recognition of the fact that evidence-based research forms the foundation of most public opinion (with a good deal of spin from the press) in the last fifteen years or so we have seen a move towards chiropractic based on musculoskeletal symptomatic relief. The expectation is that outcomes of pain relief are easier to prove, though the connection to organic diseases or non-musculoskeletal, visceral conditions persists.

Chiropractic care encompasses over 100 distinct techniques that may or may not use specialised equipment. Spinal care is one of the key categories of therapeutic approaches, along with spinal decompression therapy, massage, acupuncture, laser therapy, electrical muscle stimulation, diathermy, ultrasound, cryotherapy and others.

Chiropractic is defined by Healthline as a primary therapeutic application that involves applying a specific amount of force vectored through a specific plane of motion of a spinal or peripheral joint, in order to reduce joint restriction and facilitate normal range of motion.

A systematic review conducted in 2010, and published in The Spine Journal, found the following:

Results from most studies suggest that 5 to 10 sessions of chiropractic administered over 2 to 4 weeks achieve equivalent or superior improvement in pain and function when compared with other commonly used interventions, such as physical modalities, medication, education, or exercise, for short, intermediate, and long-term follow-up.

However, the positive results dont stop there.

In 1999, a Danish-Swedish study published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found some unexpected improvements in patients non-spinal conditions following spinal care. The study authors set out to investigate the frequency and types of improved non-musculoskeletal symptoms reported after chiropractic.

They sought retrospective information from 87 Swedish chiropractors, who interviewed patients about their non-musculoskeletal conditions and reactions from treatment on their return visit, two weeks after their initial visit.

Results were very encouraging:

At least 1 reaction was reported after the previous treatment in 21% to 25% of cases. Of these responses, 26% were related to the airway passages (usually reported as easier to breathe), 25% were related to the digestive system (mostly reported as improved function), 14% were classified under eyes/vision (usually reported as improved vision), and 14% under heart/ circulation (about half of these reported as improved circulation). The number of spinal areas treated was positively associated with the number of reactions.

The conclusion from this study suggested that, in an encouraging number of cases, positive non-musculoskeletal reactions may have been produced as a result of chiropractic. Though clearly this study was limited in nature, and it is not known whether the positive reaction was due to real physiologic improvements or based on subjective impressions it set the ground for much-needed further investigation into the subject via controlled randomised trials.

Why chiropractic may have these other positive effects is not entirely understood either, though one possible reason could be that chiropractic procedures reduce inflammation in the body, which is a known cause of disease. With the growing number of chronic conditions and diseases hitting urban populations in all parts of the world today, and over-medicating certainly no answer to this, spinal care will have an important role to play alongside lifestyle factors such as diet and activity levels in improving peoples health.

"We don't get sick because we have cancer; we get cancer because we are already sick"

Posted: December 20, 2017
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

With many cancers on the rise around the world the need for affordable and effective solutions to the disease is greater than ever.

Cancer rates are increasing in most urbanized populations and it is becoming a managed disease in the west; expensive new drugs supposedly help sufferers enjoy a better quality of life for a while if they can afford them, but what about those that cant? And what about the toxic load of these drugs that causes other problems?

Fortunately there have been recent advances in other approaches that consider the root causes of cancer and take non-toxic steps to fight it.

Understanding that cancer is predominantly a genetic disease that cannot be reversed is a myth that has been perpetuated for a long time; but there has been a growing recognition in the past decade that the vast majority of cancers are caused by underlying lifestyle factors.

The medical profession is focused on screening and finding the disease early which is great for business; but it would be better for the rest of us if the research was aimed at the root causes so that we could take more effective measures to prevent and reverse it.

Virtually all of the common medicinal approaches today are akin to waging war on the body, using highly toxic chemicals that destroy good cells as well as cancerous cells. This slash and burn approach often creates side effects that are worse than the actual cancer; and over 3,000 years of using this therapy still has not improved survival rate - if you dont get sucked into the 5 year survival rate statistics that are currently being used to pull the wool over your eyes.

However, there is a branch of cancer treatment that looks at environmental exposures, stress, nutrition, and other lifestyle-based factors that are within out control and can be changed.

Viewing cancer as an epigenetic dysfunction means that rather than merely playing out our hereditary programming, the body is responding to its environment. If we consider the modern environment that we expose our bodies to through the air we breathe and the food and drink we consume we see an array of toxins; combined with the weakened state of our bodies because of lack of physical activity, and natural wellness such as chiropractic adjustments, this produces an environment that may promote the growth of cancer. According to the Canadian Cancer Society, some research has shown that chiropractic is useful for muscle and bone problems, so it may help people living with cancer to cope with pain and discomfort. Also, chiropractic adjustments have proved to boost ones immune system which is very important when dealing with cancer.

It is best to discuss with your doctor and chiropractor if chiropractic care would best suited for you depending on the type of cancer you have. Chiropractic therapy may not be recommended if you have primary bone cancers or cancers such as leukemia. Always check with you health care team to make sure before starting any care plan.

The Food and Chemical Toxicology journal recently published an article that looked at the use of plant-derived bio active compounds to target cancer stem cells and modulate tumour micro environment.

The study authors note that:

A fundamental aspect to be taken into account is that epigenetic changes can possibly be reversed by modifying epigenetic factors, such as diet and lifestyle. Nowadays, identification of these factors is crucial to develop epigenetically-based preventions and more effective anti-cancer intervention strategies.

They particularly note the importance of diet in reversing these changes:

Virtually, all dietary compounds have the ability to act at the epigenetic level in cancer cells thus influencing the epigenome in a positive or negative way. Particularly, plant derived compounds, such as polyphenols, have the capacity to reverse adverse epigenetic mutations in cancer cells, to inhibit tumorigenesis progression, to prevent the metastatic process or to sensitize cancer cells to chemo and radiotherapy (Vanden Berghe, 2012).

The value of plants, known to the ancient healers and marginalized in the present chemical-based approaches that dominate medicine, is again being recognized for its potential for healing. This directly challenges the erroneous and commonly-held beliefs that cancer results from cells going rogue and replicating chaotically in the body.

The view that cancer is the bodys survival response to environmental factors that are unprecedented in the previous millions of years of evolution up to the industrial age makes the solution a lot clearer: its a question of restoring the ideal physical, mental and spiritual conditions that balance the body and deny a breeding ground for cancer cells.

Sayer Ji, founder of Green Med Info puts it very well:
We dont get sick because we have cancer; we get cancer because we are already sick.

Are you suffering from Insomnia? Chiropractic can Help!

Posted: November 27, 2017
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Insomnia is difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep for long enough to feel refreshed the next morning; chronic insomnia is when this occurs for at least three nights per week for three months.

It is more common than you might imagine. Most of us experience some intermittent sleep problems at some point in our lives; but beyond this around a third of people in the Canada have episodes of insomnia, more commonly women and older people.

It can be caused by a number of factors, notably stress and anxiety, depression, some medications, illness, and alcohol or drug abuse. While most of us know that lack of sleep can cause us to be less with it, more irritable, and lacking in energy, less is known about the long-term health effects of not getting enough sleep over a longer period of time. Recent studies show that chronic insomnia is connected to a host of the most serious chronic diseases.

A 40-year study by the University of Arizona examining the long-term effects of sleepless nights was recently published in the American Journal of Medicine. The conclusion was that persistent insomnia defined as for six years or more - was linked to a 58 per cent increased risk of death. It was also linked to higher levels of inflammation in the blood (measured by a bio marker in blood called C-reactive protein), which is linked to many serious chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, dementia, and depression. This is not the first time that chronic insomnia has been linked with mortality but it is the first time that the underlying mechanism has been suggested.

What can you do?
If you think you may be suffering from insomnia dont let it go undiagnosed or unattended. Most medications for chronic insomnia are ineffective but it is possible to make lifestyle changes that will improve your chances of regularly getting a good nights sleep.
Some of these include:

Meditation or other relaxation techniques
Keeping consistent bed times and wake up times
Removing all TVs and phones from the room when you sleep
Using thicker curtains, or an eye mask and earplugs to so that you are not awoken by light or noise
Avoiding caffeine later in the day
Avoiding alcohol
Avoiding eating heavy meals late at night
Getting enough exercise

and most importantly regular chiropractic adjustments!

As Chiropractic adjustments improve blood flow throughout your nervous system, it can help reduce the amount of stress on your body which maybe out of alignment and balance. Thus allowing you to get a better nights rest and improve your overall sleeping habits. Many patients rave about how much better they sleep at night since getting their spine adjusted regularly, which also helps improve their day to day life!

If you suspect that you may have insomnia, try keeping a sleep diary for a month before you schedule an appointment to see me because this will help me to understand the cause of your problem better. This should detail your late night routine, what time you get to sleep, wake up times, how you feel in the morning and throughout the day etc. This will help diagnose why you do have insomnia and that will be the first step to doing something about it.


The Milk Myth!

Posted: November 7, 2017
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Thanks to clever promotion by the dairy industry milk is almost universally promoted as healthy dietary addition, predominantly for its high calcium content and therefore its positive effect on bone health. This is such a powerful belief that dozens of super models, actors/actresses, sports people and other celebrities clamber to jump on the promotional bandwagon presumably with the intent to make the world a healthier place.

BUT - for many years now Ive been telling anyone who would listen to me that modern industrialized dairy is a bad thing to put in your body...

What if, instead of promoting healthy bones, milk is actually connected by the science available to us to a higher risk of osteoporosis and even to death? A new Swedish study published in the British Medical Journal says just that.

A team of Swedish scientists from Uppsala University set out to examine whether high milk consumption is associated with mortality and fractures in women and men.They carried out a cohort (observational) study of over 61,000 women and 45,000 men aged between 39 and 79, from three central Swedish counties. The participants were administered food frequency questionnaires in the 1980s and the 90s and follow up was performed after an average of 20 years (for women) and 11 years (for men) to determine the association between milk consumption and time to mortality or fracture.

Results showed that, in both women and men, the adjusted mortality hazard ratio increased with every glass of milk drunk per day.You understood that correctly, each glass of milk made it more likely that you would die!For every glass of milk drunk by women or men, no reduction was observed in fracture risk in fact it increased for women.Additionally, a positive association was seen between milk intake and biomarkers of oxidative stress and inflammation. Oxidative stress and chronic low grade inflammation is a pathogenetic mechanism of cardiovascular disease and cancer, as well as a mechanism of age-related bone loss and sarcopenia.

These findings led to the following conclusion, with the caveat that it was an observational study:

High milk intake was associated with higher mortality in one cohort of women and in another cohort of men, and with higher fracture incidence in women.

I told you so!

Connections Between Milk and Chronic Disease
Milk and dairy consumption has been linked with a host of chronic health problems apart from osteoporosis.Milk consumption increases mucus production in the respiratory tract and dairy is one of the most mucus-forming foods we can consume: dairy has frequently been connected to asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, runny noses, and ear infections.

Following are some examples:

Weight Gain
In a study of almost 13,000 US children in 1996, children who drank more than 3 servings of milk a day gained more in BMI than those who drank smaller amounts, mainly due to the excess calories.

The addition of bovine growth hormones increases the level of insulin-growth factor (IGF) in milk, which has been strongly linked to certain common cancers, as reported by The International Journal of Cancer in 2000. Milk consumption has particularly been linked with prostate and breast cancers.

Heart Disease
The correlation between dairy and heart disease is the strongest of all food types, with sugar second.

Juvenile Diabetes
More than 20 well-documented studies prompted one researcher to say the link between milk and juvenile diabetes is 'very solid'.

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Drinking milk has long been linked to rheumatoid arthritis, which often affects the hands and feet of patients.

Toxic Load and Deadly Bacteria
Milk contains toxic levels of dioxins and may contain a cocktail of pesticides, antibiotics and other chemicals, as well as potentially killer bacteria like salmonella, listeria, and E. Coli.

Early Menstruation in Girls
Earlier onset of menstruation or menarche has been a feature of the past one hundred and fifty years, and has often been linked with milk consumption.

Neither the milk ads nor the health authorities recognize any of the above; that is one thing. But for both to actively promote milk as a positive force in fighting osteoporosis, when it may have entirely the reverse effect, is another thing altogether. Milk does contain many essential nutrients of importance for the skeleton, including calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D. However, there is growing evidence that the negative effects outweigh these positives. It certainly warrants further investigation and a review of official dietary guidelines.

If you are a dairy addict and just cant give it up then I recommend dairy from 100% grass fed organic animals - it is possible that this type of dairy has no toxic effects because there is no specific data to show that it does. However, just because the data does not exist does not mean that it is safe! Feel free to ask me more about nutrition and ways to eat and "drink" right, on your next visit!

Teen Health- What do we do?

Posted: September 26, 2017
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Much of the present focus on childhood obesity is understandable, providing as it does a very striking visual reminder of the lack of fitness in the generations that we are raising.But health is not just about body weight and its important not to forget that the real chronic health problems work silently inside at a metabolic level and are affecting people earlier and earlier in their lives. Hence the prediction that this generation may be the first generation that lives shorter lives than their parents.

There was more indication of this earlier this month when the Irish Herald reported that a new study from Dublin City University showed that unfit Irish teenagers are showing evidence of heart disease.It found that male transition year students with low fitness levels are showing worrying early signs of cardiovascular disease which (is) Ireland's biggest killer, accounting for a third of all deaths every year.The study is ongoing, but has so far found that 15-year-old boys with low fitness levels have less -healthy blood vessels than highly or moderately fit students. Some were also showing signs of hypertension and high cholesterol.

While rising heart disease levels in populations around the world have been identified for some time, the trend in youth populations is even more disconcerting - but not particularly surprising.Modern diets are becoming increasingly reliant on processed carbohydrates, with low fruit and vegetable content and poor nutritional value; coupled with physical activity levels going through the floor, we are paying the metabolic price for this earlier and earlier in life. It is not just teen obesity and cardiovascular problems that are on the rise but type 2 diabetes, cancer, and other chronic diseases and conditions too.

Yes, new medications are brought onto the market that manage the conditions; but this cannot disguise the fact that the traditional wisdom of these being old man diseases is a lie. These problems are manifesting themselves earlier in life, due to the risk factors mentioned above taking a firm hold.Heart disease can and does start very early in childhood according to study author Sinead Sheridan, and you dont have to be overweight to see the symptoms. "In our low fitness group the majority of the guys were overweight but there were also guys in the group who were actually very lean," Sheridan said. "It is actually better to be overweight and fit than to be lean and unfit. Studies show that fitness trumps over all the other risk factors" she added.

The heart and blood vessels are connected to the central nervous system, with one major attachment being the vagus nerve (this nerve comes from the brain) and the autonomic nervous system. These nerves are the central control of your heart rate and blood pressure, both important factors when it comes to heart health. Due to the fact chiropractic care positively impacts the nervous system, its benefits to the heart are superior to other forms of care. Chiropractic care can help prevent or treat cardiovascular disease by lowering blood pressure, improve nerve function of the heart, decrease blood markers of inflammation, improve heart rate variability, decrease chest pain and improve lung function.

Good chiropractic benefits more than just your heart as the nervous system touches every organ and cell in the body. Get your children and teens looked at today here at Atlantis Wellness in Woodbridge to see if there are any early signs of heart disease that we can help treat.

Stretching for Neck Pain Sufferers

Posted: September 15, 2017
By: Dr. Ruminder Birk

Often enough it is easy for us to forget about stretching, as it's something people don't usually consider as "important". Stretching daily is really great to help with improving posture, better balance, as well as reduced aches and pain. Overall stretching has many benefits which will positive impact your health and wellness. Below are a few stretches we recommend at Atlantis Wellness Center for patients with neck pain and cervical conditions.

Upper Trapezius Stretch - 3 repetitions of 30 seconds each
This stretch helps to correct muscular imbalances and restore range of motion. As well as increasing flexibility, and improving mobility and joint function.

Begin by positioning yourself in a seated position with one hand grasping the side of the chair while the other hand is gently contacting the top of your head.

Gently tilt your head forward as your chin drops down towards your chest. Then slightly rotate your head to one side until a stretch is felt in the neck as the hand on top of your head pulls gently to slightly increase the stretch sensation. Attention should be paid not to elevate the opposite side shoulder. Hold for the recommended duration and repeat as instructed.

Quadruped Thoraco-Lumbar Mobility 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest
This stretch helps provide stability and support to your thoracic spine while walking and running.

Begin in the quadruped position with palms flat on the floor and knees on the floor below hips. Place left hand on the back of the neck and flex the body towards the floor bringing the left elbow towards the right hip.

Slowly lift the left elbow upwards, extending and rotating the body towards the high elbow. Repeat for the recommended number of repetitions before switching sides.

Isolated Cervical Extension - 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest between sets
This stretch helps to increase neck strength and muscular endurance, as well as improve stability, functional strength and injury prevention.

Place fingers around the neck at the location instructed by your chiropractor (may be upper, middle or lower neck). Middle fingers should touch at mid line.

Apply gentle pressure with fingers and extend head. You should feel the neck bending over your fingers. Repeat for prescribed sets and reps.

Head Retraction - 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest between sets
The purpose of this stretch is to increase neck strength and muscular endurance.

To start, begin seated, or standing, looking forward with shoulders back with good neutral posture.

Activate core muscles. Attempt to draw head directly backwards. Maintain level head position. Do not tilt head up or down. Hold for two seconds. Return to start position and repeat for prescribed repetitions and sets.

Child Pose with Foam Roll 30 seconds, 3 times a day
This stretch helps to correct shoulder imbalances and restore overall function. In addition, this stretch helps increase flexibility, improve joint range of motion, and improves circulation.

Begin on your knees with hands on foam roll. Hands should be shoulder width apart and directly under shoulders.

Slowly sit hips back, dropping head and chest downward allowing arms to stretch upward. Hold for 20-30 seconds or for prescribed duration. Repeat for prescribed repetitions.