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Caffeine Mon Amore

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world. It is widely known for its energizing effects from a substance known as caffeine. It is not the most harmful beverage to consume and in fact has many health benefits, but as with most things moderation is key. Coffee aggravates certain conditions such as stomach ulcers, heartburn, gallstones, arrhythmias and can cause sleep disturbances or migraines.


  • Source of antioxidants to help prevent cell damage.
  • Reduces risk of certain diseases: Type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, liver cirrhosis.
  • Coffee has been used to help treat spasmodic asthma.
  • Caffeine and methylxanthine, both found in coffee, are metabolic stimulants, which could be helpful in weight loss.
  • Previously used in enemas to enhance peristalsis (movement in the colon) and cause the release of bile containing fat-soluble toxins.

Problems Associated with Coffee Intake:

  • Excessive use can lead to dependence. Withdrawal symptoms including headaches may develop if you stop drinking it.
  • Decreases the absorption of iron and calcium.
  • Boiled coffee contains compounds that increase LDL cholesterol levels. Filtered and unfiltered coffee raises plasma homocysteine levels; both of which are associated with heart disease.
  • Coffee can contribute to high blood pressure and irregular heartbeats.
  • It is a mild diuretic and can cause dehydration.
  • Excessive consumption of coffee as a stimulant when you should be resting can lead to a worsening of fatigue.
  • If your liver cannot process the caffeine effectively, side effects such as feeling jittery or having an inability to sleep can worsen.
  • If the coffee is not organic then you are increasing your exposure to pesticides.


  1. Saaksjarvi K, Knekt P, et al. Prospective study of coffee consumption and risk of Parkinson’s disease. PubMed
  2. Hu G, Bidel S, Jousilahti P, et al. Coffee and tea consumption and the risk of Parkinson’s disease. PubMed
  3. van Dam RM, Willett WC, et al. Coffee, caffeine, and risk of type 2 diabetes: a prospective cohort study in younger and middle-aged U.S. women. Diabetes Care. PubMed
  4. Leitzmann MF, Stampfer MJ, et al. Coffee intake is associated with lower risk of symptomatic gallstone disease in women. Gastroenterology. PubMed
  5. Arendash GW, Schleif W, et al. Caffeine protects Alzheimer’s mice against cognitive impairment and reduces brain beta-amyloid production. Neuroscience. PubMed
  6. Urgert R, Essed N, et al. Separate effects of the coffee diterpenes cafestol and kahweol on serum lipids and liver aminotransferases. PubMed
  7. Urgert R, Weusten-van der Wouw MP, et al. Chronic consumers of boiled coffee have elevated serum levels of lipoprotein(a). PubMed
  8. Winkelmayer WC, Stampfer MJ, et al. Habitual caffeine intake and the risk of hypertension in women. PubMed
  9. Hallstrom H, Wolk A, et al. Coffee, tea and caffeine consumption in relation to osteoporotic fracture risk in a cohort of Swedish women. PubMed
  10. Wu, Jiang-nan; Ho, Suzanne C; et al. (2009). “Coffee consumption and risk of coronary heart diseases: A meta-analysis of 21 prospective cohort studies”. International Journal of Cardiology 137 (3): 216–25. doi:10.1016/j.ijcard.2008.06.051. PMID 18707777.
  11. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2010 Dec; 54(12):1734-43. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201000147. Antioxidant effectiveness of coffee extracts and selected constituents in cell-free systems and human colon cell lines. Bakuradze T, Lang R, et al. Department of Chemistry, Division of Food Chemistry and Toxicology, University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany.
  12. Hepatology. 2010 Nov; 52(5):1652-61.Coffee reduces liver damage in a rat model of steatohepatitis: the underlying mechanisms and the role of polyphenols and melanoidins.
  13. Vitaglione P, Morisco F, et al. Department of Food Science, University of Napoli Federico II, Portici, Italy.
  14. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2010 Dec;54(12):1722-33. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201000048. Instant coffee with high chlorogenic acid levels protects humans against oxidative damage of macromolecules.
  15. Hoelzl C, Knasmüller S, et al. Department of Medicine I, Institute of Cancer Research, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
  16. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010 Jan 20;(1):CD001112. Caffeine for asthma. Welsh EJ, Bara A, et al. Community Health Sciences, St George’s, University of London, Cranmer Terrace, London, UK, SW17 0RE.
  17. Textbook of Natural Medicine. Pizzorno and Murray 2nd ed. Churchhill Livingston



Cheers and Tears

There are numerous studies suggesting moderate alcohol consumption can have protective benefits against heart disease by raising HDL (good) cholesterol and reducing plaque accumulation in the arteries. Currently, an official safe amount of alcohol does not exist yet most studies suggest one drink or less daily. Unfortunately, the average person consuming alcohol does not stop at one drink per day.

A drink is considered to be 12 oz. of beer or 5 oz. of wine or 1.5 oz. of 80-proof distilled spirits. Drinking more than 3 drinks per day or drinking heavily at one time has direct toxic effects on the body.

Ethanol (alcohol) is metabolized by the liver and converted to an aldehyde product that is believed to be responsible for the harmful effects to the body. The process results in the production of free radicals that can further damage the heart, the liver and many other systems. This can lead to hypertension, cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, stroke, fatty infiltration of the liver, inflammation, cirrhosis and immunosuppression. In addition, food cravings often occur while consuming alcohol, as the body enters a state of reactive hypoglycemia. The drop in blood sugar can lead to anxiety, dizziness, depression, visual disturbances and heart palpitations. A number of cancers of the mouth, throat, stomach, colon and breast have been linked to increased alcohol consumption.

Intake of alcohol can impair digestion and cause malabsorption of important nutrients. Alcohol is absorbed through the stomach and intestines into the bloodstream. Ethanol can damage the lining of the stomach, prevent the secretion of digestive enzymes from the pancreas and impair transport of the nutrients. Many nutritional deficiencies, especially vitamin B1, can result, leading to very serious health consequences.

Dehydration often occurs with alcohol consumption as alcohol is a diuretic, causing the increase of fluid loss from the body and potassium excretion. Thirst, muscle cramps, dizziness and faintness can result with alterations in potassium balance and water loss. Also, alterations in fluid and acid-base balance from alcohol consumption are important to monitor as increases in acid accumulate in the stomach with alcohol consumption contributes to changes in the acid-base balance. The pH of the body which refers to the homeostasis of all the fluids should remain alkaline (7.37 and 7.43). When the pH falls below 7, decreased organ function, respiratory depression and even death may result.

It is well known that alcohol can be addictive and it is often perceived to be a stimulant. Interestingly, it is actually classified as a general anesthetic and produces a depressive and desensitizing effect on the central nervous system. With continuous consumption, tolerance develops as the brain adapts to diminish the effect, while the liver increases its capability to metabolize alcohol more quickly. These changes in the body create what are known as high functioning alcoholics. Although large quantities of alcohol have been consumed motor control and cognitive function appear to be maintained while in this state. This level of functioning is not preserved during periods of withdrawal.

Alcohol is a psychoactive drug that affects both individual and social development. According to the World Health Organization, it results in 2.5 million deaths globally per year. It affects your senses, thoughts, emotions, behavior and it causes harm to the well-being and health of the people around you. An intoxicated person is at increased risk for violent behavior and risk of injury or death from a motor vehicle accident. MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) Canada estimates that there are 1,350-1,600 impaired crash fatalities in Canada each year (3.7-4.4 deaths per day) from motor vehicle and boating accidents and approximately 73,120 injuries from impaired driving crashes (roughly 200 per day). The harmful impact of alcohol is more than an individual concern; it affects society as a whole.

Many people associate their alcohol consumption with social activities and rarely does this consist of a single drink. As of May 1, 2009 in Ontario, if you are caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) from 0.05 to 0.08, the police can immediately suspend your license for 3-30 days.

At the Nature Medicine clinic, we are not against the consumption of alcohol but for its use in moderation. If you are going to drink: Drink Responsibly!




Nutrients are necessary for every structure and function in the body. A nutrient is defined as a chemical substance that provides energy, forms new components or assists in various bodily processes. In today’s busy world it is difficult to find healthy foods, ensure a clean environment or live completely stress free. Health supplements are an intervention that can easily be integrated into our busy lives.

Nutrition was only recognized as a distinct discipline in 1934, almost 200 years after the first nutritional experiment. A British physician, Dr. James Lind, studied the effect of foods containing ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) on scurvy. The Royal Navy adopted his recommendations several decades after his discovery. Eventually, the Royal Navy decreed that a certain amount of citrus fruit must be kept on board for each sailor. The absence of scurvy was a contributing factor to the British rule of the high seas and their nickname ‘limey’.

Despite his success in 1747, the concept of vitamins as necessary bodily nutrients was only discovered in 1912 by Casimir Funk. He proposed that pellagra, beriberi, scurvy and rickets were diseases of deficiency and not caused by a bacteria. Funk knew that “vital for life” nutrients with a nitrogen component could correct the deficiency, thus leading to the term “vita-mine” (vita meaning “essential for life” in Latin and amine for “nitrogen containing compound”). Eventually the “e” was removed following the realization that not all vitamins contained nitrogen, creating the word we use today “vitamin”.

Modern health supplements supply critical nutrients to compensate for common deficiencies, genetics, toxic build-up, enzyme defects and to prevent or treat illnesses. Supplements have the potential to play a major role in health and can be easily used as a complementary treatment in many cases.

Dietary deficiency:

Micronutrients are being consumed in minimal amounts today compared to our ancestors. The average diet is significantly lacking essential nutrients. The nutrient content of food has shifted due to the focus of modern farming techniques on producing higher yields. From 1940-2000, nutrient content has declined significantly: magnesium 21-35%, potassium 6-14%, calcium 16-29%, iron 15-32%, copper 81%, riboflavin (B2) 38% and vitamin C 15%.

Absorption defects:

Not only does our food contain fewer nutrients, but gastrointestinal disturbances can contribute to malabsorption and hereditary absorption defects. Folic acid, biotin, magnesium and zinc are some of the common poorly absorbed nutrients. Absorption is essential to supplementation. Taking a handful of pills daily is not effective if your body is not able to metabolize them properly. At Nature Medicine, we seek to correct this prior to supplementation to ensure that you will absorb your nutrients properly.

Enzyme defects:

Supplementation has been demonstrated to improve body function for at least 50 inherited enzyme defects. This includes conversion of a vitamin to its active form.

Disease deficiencies:

The body’s nutrient requirements can be altered by the presence of disease especially if the illness causes an increased metabolic rate, such as hyperthyroidism (depleting vitamins A, B, C, E, copper, iron). In the case of congestive heart failure, the heart tissue faces an impaired ability to absorb magnesium, potassium, calcium, zinc, vitamin C and B vitamins.

Drug-induced deficiencies:

Certain medications are capable of promoting nutrient deficiencies. Supplementation can be beneficial in preventing drug side effects.

Nutritional requirements for the general population are often calculated by taking the mean (average) requirement hence the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA). Other factors including safety, exposure, stress and nutrient stability are taken into consideration too.  Unfortunately, there are downfalls to the RDAs. These values are established for a healthy population and do not take into account disease states (digestive difficulties, malabsorption, chronic infection), genetic defects, environmental pollutants or increased need due to medications. These are special instances that would increase a person’s RDA. Considering how wide spread disease trends have become, we recognize that the RDAs should be considered as general guidelines. Each person has an individual optimal requirement that will likely fall well above the RDA and well below the toxic dose. Your Nature Medicine Naturopathic Doctor will recommend the most appropriate and safest dose for your nutritional supplementation, taking into account the most recent research and the effectiveness of various nutrients.


  1. Marz, R. Medical Nutrition. 2nd edition. 2002. Omni-Press. Portland, OR.
  2. Gaby, A. Nutritional Medicine. 2011. Fritz Perlberg Publishing. Concord, NH.
  3. Pizzorno, J & Murray, M. Textbook of Natural Medicine. 3rd edition. 2006. Elsevier Ltd. Churchill Livingstone. St. Louis, Missouri.

Microorganism Elimination Technique (M.E.T.)

Microorganisms are a constant threat to our bodies, well-being, energy and vitality. Viruses, bacteria, mold and fungi can steal nutrients and force the body to use up resources to fight the infection and deal with the toxins released by the damaged infected tissue.

The M.E.T. or Microorganism Elimination Technique utilizes muscle testing or electrodermal testing, to detect the possible presence of specific pathogens/microorganisms. These foreign microbes may presently be the “causal factors” for compromised immune systems, preventing individuals from achieving optimal health.

This therapy helps to energetically identify the suspected microorganism(s) and direct the immune system to attack it. Once neutralized, the immune response is reset, preventing any further attack on the remaining healthy tissue.

How is M.E.T. Performed?

An M.E.T. session takes approximately 15 minutes to complete. The frequency of the treatments depends on the vitality of the individual, the severity of the pathology and the stealth capability of the microorganism.

The practitioner places a vial (containing the electromagnetic signature of a microorganism) in one hand and uses muscle testing on the other arm to evaluate the strength and weakness of the muscle. Once it is determined which microorganisms are possibly causing the body a problem, acupressure is then applied to attune the immune response to the electromagnetic dynamics of a specific microorganism.

A dietary adjustment of NO sugar or food with high sugar content is required for approximately 12 hours after the treatment.

What is a Microorganism?

A microorganism is a bacteria, parasite, virus, mold or fungus that contains an energetic signature or biological marker that the immune system identifies as foreign. This means it does not have the same markers as healthy cells. When foreign cells or materials are identified, the body sends signals to the immune system to attack the area where the foreign substance exists, waging a war. Joint pain in arthritis, for instance, can be as a result of the body identifying a microorganism as an invader and the immune system then wages war on that microorganism.

Regrettably, when this war takes place, the immune system will not only attack the foreign invader, it attacks the healthy tissues in that area as well. After this attack on the tissue, the body is weakened and left to repair the damage from the attack. Unfortunately, this well-intentioned process may not actually destroy the microorganism. When under attack, some microorganisms with stealth capabilities retreat back into other tissues and other areas of the body, so that only a small amount of the foreign microbe could be eliminated. This process takes time, with each treatment it is similar to giving the scent to a hunting dog (immune system). After the microorganism is cleared, we then have to stop the immune system from waging war on other tissues by mistake.

Stealth Microorganisms

In chronic infections, the microorganism evades the immune system by several means. First of all it hides, typically in the areas of poor circulation (caused by heavy metals and chemicals). Secondly, the microorganism learns how to dominate the host’s behaviour and immune system. Thirdly, the microorganism creates a better breeding ground for itself by producing peptides and other informational substances that create acidity and toxicity. This decreases the circulation lowering the temperature to benefit the microorganism and discouraging the immune system from accessing the infected area.

There are many other mechanisms that microorganisms use to maintain their stealth capability. Ultimately, a microorganism’s primary goal is self-preservation. When western science cannot detect these microorganisms in infected tissues, the corresponding diseases are wrongly labeled as being autoimmune diseases. This is where the body attacks itself. In coronary heart disease and stroke, microorganisms have been identified as being the suspected cause. These include: herpes viruses, chlamydia, h. pylori, strep, nanobacteria and salmonella. In Multiple Sclerosis they have identified herpes virus 6, mycoplasmas, borrelia and cytomegalovirus. In osteoarthritis, they have identified mycoplasmas and chlamydia. In Parkinson’s disease, mycoplasmas, borrelia, chlamydia and herpes viruses. In ALS or Lou Gerhig’s disease, mycoplasmas, borrelia, herpes simplex 1 and 2, cytomegalovirus and human herpes virus 6. Cancer is often caused by a combination of numerous viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites.

Toning Down the Immune System

After the stealth microorganism is eliminated, the immune system may still be sending continual attacks on the healthy tissues and the surrounding areas. Due to the stealth capability of the microorganism the immune system does not know when it has won the battle. This attack causes a breakdown of the healthy tissues. The repair of these tissues requires proper nutrition. Without proper nutrition, the body cannot effectively repair the damage and this attack can ultimately cause internal scaring and possibly chronic pain. M.E.T. puts a stop to the continuous attack on the healthy tissues after it has specifically pinpointed the foreign invader and destroyed it.

Note: If you have a severe pathology, continuing with the M.E.T. treatment is strongly recommended once the microorganism is gone. Otherwise you may experience severe pain due to the immune system’s assault on healthy tissues.

How are Microorganisms treated?

Using muscle testing has allowed us to identify microbes possibly responsible for causing various disorders and diseases. The foundation of the treatment is to first alert the immune system, then to deactivate the microorganism and if necessary interrupt the pattern of pain sequences throughout the body. The process may need to isolate the different phases and levels of a microorganism in order to re-educate the autonomic system to most effectively repair damaged portions of the body.

Why Muscle Testing?

Muscle testing is used to energetically assess if an electromagnetic signature of a microorganism is involved in a health problem. From a strictly scientific perspective tissue biopsies, cultures and several other tests would need to be performed to locate a microorganism. Therefore this process could amount to hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in costs, not to mention irreparable damage done to the body due to the biopsy. Modern medicine cannot detect these microorganisms without very expensive lab tests. When we find a microorganism’s electromagnetic signature, this does not mean you have an infection. It also does not mean that you do not. However, we have noticed that by clearing these electromagnetic signatures people’s health significantly improves.

M.E.T. is used in Virtually any Disease for Patients of any Age

The more severe the pathology and the longer the pathology has persisted, the more treatments are needed. In addition to arthritis, M.E.T. can be used on medical diagnoses of Lupus, Fibromyalgia, early stages of M.S., Crohn’s disease, colitis and autoimmune disorders. We have used it to treat cancer and heart diseases as well with variable results.

Other therapies that may need to be performed in conjunction with M.E.T. to target stealth microorganisms include: IV ozone, chelation IV vitamins and minerals and E.A.T. The Eliminate Allergy Technique can electromagnetically reprogram the body to turn off extreme immune responses and then achieve maximum absorption of nutrients required to attain optimal health.

Other factors that may hinder the success of M.E.T. in getting results include: stress, weak or diseased organs, heavy metals, hormonal imbalance, drugs, chemicals, diet, food allergies, circulation, toxic emotions, subconscious emotions, weather conditions, environmental allergies and lack of exercise.


Manipulation is a manual maneuver used to restore maximal, pain-free movement of the muscular skeletal system.  The history of manipulation of the spine and extremities begins as early as Hippocrates in 640 BC. There is evidence throughout Asia and India that there is a possibility of earlier roots. In China, a distinct branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine called Tui Na, was devoted to manipulative techniques that date back to 2700 BC. Naturopathy and Chiropractic care were taught in the same colleges up until the 1950s. Manipulation techniques were considered part of the naturopathic education. Today these two schools of thought are no longer in the same building. Manipulation is still a strong part of the naturopathic curriculum and remains a requirement for graduation and licensure for Naturopathic Medicine.

Manipulation adjusts bones to increase mobility and correct misalignment. Naturopathic manipulation focuses on both soft tissue and bone alignment similar to a chiropractic adjustment. These techniques use a high-velocity thrust to achieve joint cavitation (popping noise). This form of manipulation differs from other forms of manipulation which incorporate stretching, pressure and mobilization to correct the alignment of the spine and organs. Other forms of manipulation may include lymphatic drainage and cranial sacral therapy involving subtle adjustments. Naturopaths use manipulation as part of their therapeutic regimen and do not rely on this technique as their sole method of treatment. We believe that misalignment could be the result of an underlying cause. For example, in acupuncture there are specific points that run along the spine and relate to internal organs, known as the Back-Shu points. A dysfunction in one of these organs could affect the musculoskeletal system and lead to a misalignment. Naturopathic treatment in this case would focus on improving the organ and secondarily addressing the spine.

The importance of manipulation as a therapy centers on the strong interrelationship between the spine and the structure and function of the body. An imbalance in the musculoskeletal system plays a role in health. It can lead to an interference with the nervous system and the body’s ability to heal itself.  The combination of the muscular and skeletal systems account for over half the body’s mass and therefore use the most amount of energy. A decrease in function places more stress on other systems to give more energy to the musculoskeletal system. Muscles have the ability to pull bones out of alignment. If left unaddressed, the bones will remain misaligned which can lead to compensation from other muscles and the continuation of this cycle of applying pressure to more bones and joints. The resulting posture affects nerve function, increases pain, inflammation and general discomfort. By correcting the soft tissue and bones of the musculoskeletal system, naturopathic manipulation can improve the body’s ability to rebalance the nervous system and create homeostasis in the body.

Manipulation techniques have come a long way since its early documentation, in which practitioners were often referred to as “bone breakers”. The techniques have been refined to provide a gentler, high-velocity, low impact thrust to correct misalignments of the spine. At Nature Medicine, your ND is fully trained in naturopathic manipulation and is capable of using this therapy as an adjunctive treatment to your healing process. If you continually need to be adjusted there are many reasons for this. You may want to read about Prolotherapy (for tendons & ligaments being stretched), Trigger Point Injections (for muscle spasms), Neural Therapy (for nerve irritations) or MRT (for subconscious emotions).



  1. Pizzorno & Murray. Textbook of Natural Medicine. 3rd ed. Vol. I. Churchill Livingstone. 2006.