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Category Archives: Nutrition & Supplements

Sports Nutrition


Since the time of the most ancient civilizations, athletes have attempted to enhance their athletic performance with various nutritional approaches. However, as our knowledge of athletic metabolic physiology increases, we have learned that recovery from intense exercise is just as important as actual athletic performance in the athlete’s total training program. When an athlete is able to recover faster, they can train harder and perform at a higher level. The enhancement of athletic recovery is the basis of sports nutrition.

In assessing sports nutrition and supplements, it is important to remember that not all athletes are the same. There are marked differences in nutritional needs between endurance athletes and strength athletes, between conditioned athletes versus re-conditioned athletes, between male and female athletes, and other individual challenges and predispositions which point out the individuality of each athlete. Intense athletic exercise can be a major stressor for an athlete and can jeopardize immune health and performance over time. That is why a solid recovery program is essential for any athlete at any level. Proper sports nutrition includes a foundational healthy diet, nutritional supplementation (both basic and sports-specific), appropriate rest time, and, of course, ample water and hydration.

Supplement Products Supporting Athletic Recovery

Certainly one of the key building blocks in an athlete’s diet is protein, which is essential for building and repairing muscle. Perfect Protein Powder is an excellent choice for protein supplementation. Its liquid consistency provides for greater absorption of essential nutrients and amino acids.‡ While it is a complete amino acid composition in itself, Perfect Protein Powder can be enhanced further with the addition of singular amino acids, such as L-arginine, L-carnitine, and glutamine.‡ Essential nutrients such as magnesium, coenzyme Q-10, and multivitamin supplements also can be added to supercharge the basic amino acid composition of Perfect Protein Powder.‡ Athletes participating in intense exercise need to recognize that they will require vitamin supplementation above that of the recommended daily allowance (RDA), given their increased metabolic expenditure.

Given the high level of interest in sports nutrition today, certain products have been developed which will help the athlete with both performance and recovery. Nitric Oxide Formula is a combination of ingredients, including L-arginine and L-citrulline, designed to support healthy nitric oxide levels and to support the integrity and vascular health of the blood vessel wall, resulting in enhanced blood flow, stamina, performance, and recovery‡. High-dose magnesium, can be very helpful in preventing muscle cramping and pain. Fruits and Greens Energy Drink is an easy-to-mix, nutrient-rich superfood formula with whole food concentrates designed to provide synergistic phytonutrient nutrition and increased energy.t Finally, Ultimate Joint Complex will help to minimize joint deterioration secondary to overuse, and help to re-establish collagen levels in stressed joints.‡

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‡The statements contained have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Arthritis Tips


With so many individuals suffering from arthritis, it is challenging to navigate treatments and home remedies that work. This is why Cypress Pharmacy would like to highlight and tips for those who have arthritis. We believe that bringing awareness to triggers, treatments, and symptoms may help those who struggle to get their pain under control.

Before treating your arthritis, it is crucial to know which type of arthritis you may be suffering from. There are more than one hundred types of arthritis! But the three most common ones are Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), and Gout.

  • Osteoarthritis is when the joints are overused, affecting those older in age. The joints most susceptible are the ones that bear weight, such as hips, feet, knees, and the spine. With the loss of cartilage comes inflammation, thus making daily movements and tasks painful to complete. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disorder that may get worse over time. As it is difficult to separate progression from flare, it is advised to track or journal your daily movements and activities to see which tasks could be taking a toll on your arthritis. Keep a lookout for over-activity such as gardening or exercise, as this could cause trauma to the joint. Bone spurs, repetitive motions (cooking, stirring tea or a pot of food, writing, typing), cold weather, change in barometric pressure, and weight gain could all be contributing to your inflammation.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis, on the other hand, is an autoimmune disease where the body attacks itself, specifically the body’s joints. The causes of RA are still unknown, but the effects are well recorded. With a gradual or sudden sensation of stiffness, pain, and swelling, RA flares can vary in intensity, duration, and frequency. Flare-ups can occur when treatments are stopped or tapered. Overexertion, stress, infection, poor sleep, general sickness like a cold or flu are more likely to occur in patients that suffer from RA. Symptoms of RA include stiffness in the joints, especially after waking from sleep.
  • Gout is a form of arthritis described as a sudden attack of pain, swelling, and redness in the joints and most commonly in the big toe. Uncontrolled uric acid levels trigger crystals to form in and around the joints, causing inflammation. A sudden attack could wake you up in the middle of the night, with your big toe swollen, red and tender. High purine foods like shellfish or beer, dehydration, or local trauma to a joint may cause a flare-up.

Plans for a Flare-Up

  • Flare triggers are different for different types of arthritis. A flare is a period of increased disease activity or worsening symptoms- a time where your medications might not work.
  • Knowing your symptoms and arthritis will help you better track when a flare-up could occur. Whether it be the change in weather or recent inactivity, make an effort to track and keep a log of your pain and the changes in your environment that may be causing your flare-up. Common treatments include having a wrist brace on hand, keeping over-the-counter Voltaren or CBD on hand.
  • It is helpful to incorporate turmeric into your diet, as this will help decrease inflammation.
  • Treatments for flare-ups may help include steroids injections in the knee (administered by a doctor/health professional) and topicals like prescribed diclofenac gel.
  • Over-the-counter professional-grade CBD, both oral and topical, is often helpful.
  • Listen to your body- if you lack the energy to perform tasks, don’t.
  • Rest is essential, so find time for a nap and perhaps try arthritis gloves.
  • Attempt to meditate- there are many easy-to-use apps on most smartphones (Headspace, Mindfulness, or Calm app, for example)

Foods to Avoid

  • Sugary beverages significantly increase your risk of a flare-up
  • Sugars found in soda, candy, ice cream, condiments like ketchup and BBQ sauce increase inflammation
  • Opt for sugar-free pastries and desserts
  • Trans fats often found in processed foods have also been shown to trigger systemic inflammation.
  • Limit foods high in salt like canned soups, french fries, pizza, fast food
  • Processed and red meats contain high inflammatory markers
  • Try gluten-free products
  • Instead of refined grains, try whole grains
  • Reduce your alcohol intake
  • “Nightshade” vegetables like tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, and peppers are thought by some to cause inflammation, although there is much debate.  Learn more: Nightshades, Inflammation, and Chronic Pain

Supplements may help to decrease your inflammation and help relieve your pain

  • Vitamin C
  • L-proline
  • Manganese
  • Herbal preparations of turmeric, grape seed extract, ginger, and quercetin contain potent antioxidants that may reduce free radicals found in inflamed joints and contribute to cartilage degradation.
  • Cypress Pharmacy Joint Health Support provides key nutraceuticals to help support a healthy inflammatory response, facilitate cartilage synthesis and provide antioxidant support. To help support the structural integrity of joint cartilage, glucosamine and chondroitin offer significant benefits. Glucosamine sulfate helps to support the production of cartilage in your joint tissue.
  • Cypress Pharmacy InflamMove is a blend of botanical extracts and enzymes that work together to help the body’s natural inflammatory responses.


Top Immune Boosters for Peak Flu Season


By: Dr. Stan Headley, natural health consultant for Cypress Pharmacy

It’s that time of year again – when spreading holiday cheer could also mean spreading viral illnesses. In fact, it’s no coincidence that infections such as colds, flus and pneumonia drastically increase during the fall and winter months when family and friends come together.

Catching a cold, or any other respiratory-related illness, increases our chance of contracting a much more serious virus, influenza. Factors like getting older, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other medical conditions also cause our immune system to become weaker.

So, what are natural, proactive ways to protect yourself during peak flu season?

Recent clinical studies suggest that having a nutritional supplement regimen may be as effective in preventing viruses as prescription medication. Vitamins and supplements such as elderberry, vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc and quercetin can support and boost your immune system.

In addition, most people think of probiotics strictly for improving digestion. However, evidence-based science indicates 70% of the immune system resides in the digestive tract. Probiotics provide a healthy immune response and help prevent viral syndromes of all types.


While elderberry flew off shelves in the height of COVID, its popularity didn’t occur overnight. Packed with antioxidants, the dark purple berry has been used for centuries to fight infections and boost immunity. Found in everything from cough syrups to vitamin gummies, elderberry can be an effective ingredient for managing cold and flu symptoms. Recent studies show other benefits include promoting heart health and reducing inflammation. Food is medicine, and elderberry is a classic example.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is vital for the proper functioning of your immune system, which is your body’s first line of defense against infection and disease. Both anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory, this essential vitamin is great for enhancing the function of immune cells that protect our body against pathogens that cause disease. It’s estimated that at least 40% of Americans are deficient in vitamin D.

Vitamin C

Found in foods like oranges, broccoli and spinach, people often think they get enough vitamin C from their diet. However, the truth is about 90% of adults are nutritionally deficient. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and crucial for supporting immune function. A popular remedy for fighting infection, several studies suggest vitamin C may cause shorter and milder colds due to reducing inflammation in the lungs.


Present in every cell of the body, Zinc plays an important role in maintaining immune function. Immune cells must rapidly divide to respond to daily challenges and require adequate amounts of zinc to do so. Studies show that this vital mineral can block the replication and growth of viruses in the body, which make it a powerful ingredient in many over-the-counter cold supplements.


Packed with antioxidant and antiviral properties, quercetin is found in many of our fruits, vegetables and grains. Recent studies suggest that it can help your body combat free radical damage and reduce inflammatory lung response when used with zinc. It’s also believed to help zinc penetrate cells to fight respiratory infection at a cellular level.

Immune-boosting vitamins and supplements are also often available in special blends, offering all-in-one options with essential vitamins and minerals shown to promote overall immune health.

Some supplements can interact with medications or have unwanted side effects if not taken in the proper dosage, so it’s important to consult a health care professional or your pharmacist to develop tailored supplement regimens.

Bottom line: Even those who’ve received the trifecta of flu, COVID and booster shots can feel a bit uneasy when it comes to the sound of suspicious coughing or a runny nose amid peak flu season. While proper handwashing and social distancing helps to prevent the spread of infection, taking targeted immune-boosting vitamins and supplements can also add a proactive layer of protection against the seasonal flu.

Managing Your Allergy Challenges


Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is an allergic inflammatory condition of the nasal passages that affects a large portion of Americans. For some individuals, allergies are a seasonal manifestation. For others, allergies are a year-round challenge.

The term “hay fever” originated in the early 1800s when individuals seemed to suffer allergy symptoms during the hay growing season. The symptoms commonly seen with hay fever and seasonal allergies are watery, itchy eyes, nasal congestion, excessive mucous production, and sneezing. Histamine, which is produced by the mast cells, creates a cascade of events that are meant to flush out the offending substance from the body. That is why antihistamines are commonly used to address the symptoms of histamine release. However, antihistamines come with a number of adverse side effects. Fortunately, there are several natural substances that may help to manage allergy challenges without the side effects found in traditional antihistamine products. Do Natural Solutions for Allergies Work?

Vitamin C 500 mg Esterified taken 2-3 times daily has been shown to be beneficial against allergies by expediting the elimination of inflammatory histamine from the body. Quercetin, another natural substance, can serve as a mast cell stabilizer, blocking the release of histamine. Quercetin has also demonstrated a bronchodilator effect, helping to open the airways of individuals with asthma.

Aller-Calm Complex is a unique formulation featuring all of the above ingredients, as well as additional ingredients in a single tablet that supports allergy and asthma relief. Aller-Calm Complex has been shown to help relieve allergy symptoms in most individuals with allergies and asthma, as well as minimizing the need for prescription medications. Aller-Calm Complex is safe for both children and adults.

Medical studies are indicating that for many individuals, allergic reactions can be caused by permeability in the gut, or what is known as leaky gut syndrome. Since most allergens are protein-based, low stomach acid and the inability to digest offending proteins can create issues when those proteins cross over from the gut into the serum. For individuals presenting chronic allergic problems, Gut Restorative PRP can be helpful in restoring healthy gut immune function. Once the gut is restored, a quality probiotic can help to maintain gut health. Omega-3 essential fatty acids like those found in Omega-3 Fish Oil Enteric Coated have been shown to be beneficial in managing inflammatory allergic and asthmatic symptoms. 70 percent of our immune function and our ability to resist allergens is found in our gut. So maintaining good gut health on a daily basis can be essential for the management of allergic issues, regardless of the source.

IBS Diet Tips


Many individuals suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome and have a difficult time figuring out what meals to make to avoid triggering their disorder and treatments to help manage it. IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) is a disorder that affects the large intestine. It’s a chronic, functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder. Symptoms include abdominal pain, cramping, bloating, constipation and diarrhea.

Don’t cover up your IBS with band-aid remedies. Instead, look for long-term solutions for your discomfort. Start at the source, the bacteria in your gut. Just like everything in life, your gut requires balance.  In your gut, there’s a balance of good bacteria and bad bacteria. To improve gut health, supplements like probiotics are recommended. Probiotics, like Cypress Pharmacy’s Priobiotic Daily Support, are oral supplements of live, beneficial intestinal microorganisms for nutritional health and well-being. Bacteria colonize your gut, and if harmful microorganisms proliferate, the equilibrium is disturbed, and it becomes difficult for your natural bacteria to maintain territory over the space in your intestine. When you begin to take daily probiotics, you increase your chances of establishing and maintaining a healthy population of beneficial intestinal microorganisms. Once established, microflora creates acidic conditions that are unfavorable for the settlement of pathogenic microorganisms.

With the proper diet and exercise, you can often keep your IBS at bay without medication. It may seem like there aren’t a lot of meal options, but simply substituting what you already eat will create a considerable change in your digestion. Some who face this disorder follow the FODMAS diet. FODMAS means “fermentable oligo-, di-, and monosaccharides and polyols,” meaning undigested carbohydrates that, when metabolized, produce excess gas, leading to abdominal pain, diarrhea, or constipation.

Common foods to avoid or swap out:

  • Lactose, found in milk and soft dairy products. Cottage cheese, cream cheese, ice cream, and sour cream. Instead, try lactose-free milk, dairy-free ice cream, oat milk, rice milk or soy milk, lactose-free yogurt, and hard cheese like brie and camembert.
  • Olive oil instead of butter
  • Fruits containing high sugar fructose—examples: apples, pears, fruit juice, dried fruit, concentrated fruit. Try to avoid these. Fruits with low levels of sugar fructose that you can try include bananas, boysenberries, strawberries, cranberries, oranges, lemons, limes, kiwis, grapes, and cantaloupe.
  • It’s important to eat your greens, but you may want to avoid cruciferous vegetables if you suffer from IBS. Some vegetables can cause gas, such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, coleslaw, and sauerkraut.
  • Food’s high in fat should be avoided since consuming greasy food will trigger the colon. As the food makes its way through the gut, the colon contracts, trapping gas and fecal matter, causing discomfort and bloating.
  • Try going gluten-free if you can.  Gluten and wheat can be difficult to process.
  •  As delicious as chocolate is, it can cause painful IBS triggers, so it’s best to avoid this candy, especially milk chocolate, as dairy is also triggering.
  • Red meat is another IBS trigger. Due to its low water content and lack of fiber, red meats trigger contractions and spasms in the colon. Processed meats also contain additives and nitrates that irritate a sensitive gut. Meats like steak, ground beef, ham, roast beef, bacon, hot dogs are triggers for IBS symptoms like gas, bloating, nausea and constipation. Instead, try fish or poultry. It’s leaner and better tolerated.
  • This next one’s probably a no-brainer; coffee. If you suffer from IBS, stay away from coffee. Caffeine acts as a natural laxative, whether that be the intent or not. If you have IBS and drink coffee, it may trigger symptoms like diarrhea.
  • Coffee isn’t the only beverage to steer clear of. Watch out for carbonated drinks like soda as they often cause gas and bloating. Even tea can trigger your IBS!
  • As much fun as happy hour is, take caution when it comes to alcoholic beverages. Drinking alcohol can cause bowel movements to begin quicker than desired, and if it’s a soda-based cocktail, the carbonation can cause added symptoms. When it comes to beer, be careful, as gluten can also trigger any symptoms. Some better alternatives for happy hour or ladies’ night would be distilled alcohol like vodka, gin, whiskey, or scotch, as they would be less likely to trigger symptoms.

When symptoms become severe, please see your doctor. Look out for these symptoms:

Weight loss, diarrhea at night, rectal bleeding, iron deficiency anemia, unexplained vomiting, difficulty swallowing, and constant pain that isn’t relieved by passing gas or bowel movement.

How to Stay Protected During Allergy Season

allergy season

It’s that time of year again – the sniffling, sneezing and suffering of allergy season caused by the telltale yellow dust that blankets Southwest Florida for months.

With longer and warmer seasons each year, the spring and fall pollen is literally and figuratively growing worse. Right now, the biggest offenders like tree pollen, grass pollen and ragweed pollen are blowing through our breezy coastal region.

These tiny airborne allergens easily get inside your body, and when they do, your immune system goes into defense mode. To combat these intruding allergens, your body releases a chemical, called histamine, which triggers a familiar response you might recognize: sneezing, itchy throat, runny nose or teary eyes.

If you are an allergy sufferer, you are not alone. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundations of America, more than 50 million people struggle with it every year.

In its latest 2021 Allergy Capitals report, AAFA placed a Southwest Florida region on its top 50 list of most challenging places to live with seasonal allergies. Cape Coral was ranked No. 33 for allergies during spring season and No. 35 for the months during fall.

So, what can you do if you struggle with seasonal allergies and Southwest Florida is your home? A few proactive steps to recognize, prevent and manage symptoms will bring hope to those with the seasonal stuffy blues.

Reduce Your Exposure

  • Before planning your day, check local news or the Internet for the area’s pollen count forecast.
  • Keep doors and windows shut to avoid pollen from coming indoors.
  • Delegate outdoor chores, such as mowing the lawn and gardening.
  • Keep floors cleaned and maintain air filters inside the home.
  • Avoid air-drying clothes and bedding outside where pollen can stick to it.

Prevent Spread & Symptoms

  • If high pollen counts are forecasted, take allergy medication before symptoms start.
  • After outdoor activities, change into clean clothes and shower to rinse pollen from skin and hair.
  • Remove shoes, jackets and hats at the front door.
  • Wipe pets down with a towel after playing outdoors.
  • Wear a pollen or dust mask for outdoor activities.

Nonprescription Medication & Remedies

  • Oral antihistamines can help relieve sneezing, itching and runny noses.
  • Antihistamine eye drops can reduce itching and redness.
  • Specially formulated supplements may support healthy respiratory and immune systems.
  • Nasal rinse devices, such as a Neti pot, can flush out inhaled pollen and alleviate congestion.
  • Oral and nasal decongestants can offer temporary relief to help with nasal stuffiness.
  • Cromolyn sodium nasal sprays can help treat and prevent allergy symptoms.

Read more: Do Natural Solutions for Allergies Work?

When stubborn symptoms persist, your pharmacist or physician can identify which over-the-counter medicines are best suited to alleviate your symptoms. They can also help you navigate your options when more severe conditions must be addressed.

Treatment options to manage allergies can range from immunotherapy, such as shots, to prescription-strength antihistamines, decongestants and combination allergy drugs.

In addition, rescue inhalers and other medications can be prescribed for people diagnosed with allergy-induced asthma.

Amid the pandemic, a case of the sniffles, or hay fever, is the last thing you want to stress over. While allergies can’t be cured, they can certainly be managed. Having a seasonal action plan that attacks allergies first is a good place to start, and will keep you from playing catch-up once symptoms arise.

Do You Know Your Vitamin ABCs?


Vitamins and minerals are essential to ensure normal body function. For your body to complete daily tasks at optimal levels, it requires a complex variety of vitamins including, vitamins A, C, D, E, K, and the B vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin, vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12 and folate). Without these resources, nutritional deficiencies can occur, resulting in unhealthy outcomes including weakness, fatigue, depression, weight change and more.

Consuming a varied and balanced diet is the best source of essential vitamins and minerals, yet daily intake requirements are likely not being met. In fact, the CDC reports that fewer than 1 in 10 U.S. adults and adolescents eat enough fruits and vegetables. Furthermore, deficiencies can still occur even when consuming proper amounts of fruits and vegetables and can also develop with certain health conditions and medications that alter absorption. The Harvard School of Public Health recommends incorporating a multivitamin in your daily regimen to ensure that you’re obtaining all the nutrients needed to be healthy.

Taken in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle, multivitamins can help support and promote exceptional health throughout our lives. Vitamin and mineral supplements contain micronutrients meant to improve mental health, help the body function smoothly, provide specific health benefits and fill in nutrient gaps. A great multivitamin will provide support to your nervous system, heart and circulation health, memory, immune system, metabolic rate, bone density, energy and provide antioxidants.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, doctors may also recommend the use of multivitamins for people with certain diets or health issues, such as if you eat a vegetarian or vegan diet, or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Multivitamins are not recommended as a treatment for any condition, but to support general overall health.

During a time when we are striving to keep our bodies in good health, adding a multivitamin to your daily regimen could be a good option to support optimal performance. In addition, vitamins and supplements including zinc, vitamin C, vitamin D, selenium and probiotics can support and boost your immune system, potentially providing protection against illness.

A trusted medical professional or pharmacist can discuss your lifestyle habits and review your current prescriptions to make personalized recommendations for vitamins and supplements tailored to your unique needs, including for those with nutrient depletions caused by medications. Professionals can also advise on the best time to take certain vitamins and supplements as well as which strategies are best for reaching specific health goals, including heart health, anti-aging, digestion and more.

All supplements aren’t created equal, so quality is key when introducing any new elements into a health care routine. Dietary supplements should come with a Supplement Facts label, which lists all the active ingredients, as well as the serving size. Also, look for pharmaceutical-grade supplements that are manufactured under strict quality control GMP (good manufacturing practices) and validated by independent third-party laboratories for purity and potency.

Why Melatonin is Not the Best Solution For Sleep


For many years, melatonin has been a leading choice as a first-line natural therapy for mild insomnia. While melatonin has proven to be effective at preventing jet-lag when traveling across time zones, it is just not the “fix” most people are looking for when it comes to consistent deep REM sleep on a nightly basis.

Nearly 70 million Americans suffer from some form of diagnosed sleep disorder. There are many more people who are undiagnosed and struggle every night to reach any kind of restorative slumber. Millions of people resort to seeing their physician and requesting a sleep prescription, which generally includes either Ambien or Lunesta. Others may take Xanax at different dosage strengths if they also suffer from some type of anxiety. These medications can be helpful, but sometimes at the risk of some significant side effects, including dry mouth, dizziness, hangover feeling, and sometimes even memory or concentration problems. When it comes to Ambien, there is a host of known side effects, including potential hallucinations, changes in behavior, and even sleepwalking and sleep-driving without any recall. Since natural products, including nutritional supplements and herbal medicines, continue to gain in popularity, more and more Americans are turning to natural solutions for sleep as well.

Melatonin – The Standard For Natural Sleep – Until Now

There are several reasons why melatonin is not the best option for natural sleep. Melatonin gets secreted at night when it’s time to sleep. The problem is that most melatonin supplements do not mimic or simulate your natural circadian rhythm because it does not stick around long enough beyond helping you to fall asleep. For most people, it does not keep you asleep long enough to achieve a cycle or two of rapid eye movement (REM) level of sleep. Dosage adjustments can be a bit tricky too. With increased dosage, some report a sedative or drowsy effect the following morning, plus some report not feeling refreshed and mentally clear and ready to take on the day ahead. Other natural solutions have proven to be more effective at raising melatonin and serotonin levels in the mid-brain. The research indicates that most people with sleep disturbances need both of these crucial hormones to achieve quality sleep.

Taking A Closer Look At Insomnia

There are several different types of Insomnia, as not all cases of sleep disorder are identical. The two main types are short-term insomnia and chronic insomnia.

Short-term insomnia – also known as acute insomnia, this is a brief episode of difficulty sleeping. This is typically caused by a stressful life event, such as the loss of a loved one, a new difficult medical diagnosis, a pandemic similar to what we have been going through, drug rebound effects, or major life-changing events. Generally, the short-term version lasts for less than 3 months, and symptoms fade on their own as time passes, and a person copes with a stressful incident that gave rise to their sleeping problems. Short-term insomnia can become chronic or long-term insomnia in both children and adults.

Chronic insomnia – this is a long-term pattern of difficulty sleeping. To be classified as chronic, a person has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep at least three nights per week for three months or longer. Some people with chronic sleep issues have a lifetime of poor sleep. Chronic insomnia has many potential causes. Like acute or short-term insomnia, it can be associated with stressful situations. Still, it also may be related to irregular sleep schedules, poor sleep hygiene, persistent nightmares, mental health issues, underlying medical problems, medications, foods, to name a few.

Nutritional Deficiency and Insomnia

You may not have realized or thought about vitamin and mineral deficiencies and the link to insomnia or sleep issues. Nutrients are the building blocks for neurotransmitters that send signals throughout the nervous system to calm down the mind and body. So, not having certain nutrients can make sleep more challenging. The body needs a wide variety of vitamins and minerals to function properly. Most of these nutrients come from a healthy balanced diet. Here are some of the common nutrient deficiencies linked to insomnia.

  • Calcium and magnesium – lacking these two minerals can cause you to wake up after a few hours and not return to sleep.
  • Vitamin D3 – there is a direct correlation between sleep disturbance and low levels of vitamin D.
  • Vitamin B12 – because of the link between depression and B12 levels, many individuals with mild to moderate depression who also have insufficient B12 levels struggle with sleep. Ongoing research is looking into this relationship.
  • Magnesium – magnesium by itself is still one of the vital minerals needed to assist in sleep quality. It helps to regulate circadian rhythm, which is the natural sleep-wake cycle. Magnesium acts as a muscle relaxant and can help induce sleep. It can help produce melatonin and the neurotransmitter called GABA, both of which contribute to the sensation of calm to support healthy sleep.

Other Common Sleep Disorders

Two other sleep disorders that cause millions of people to struggle with their sleep are restless leg syndrome (RLS) and sleep apnea. RLS causes people to have involuntary twitching, jerking, and kicking of the legs when lying supine. This can often be related to other medical issues, but it does respond well to magnesium, potassium, vitamin B12, and alpha-lipoic acid supplementation.

Sleep apnea is another fairly common sleep disorder that sleep medicine physicians and pulmonologists deal with daily in their practices. Sleep apnea affects about 20 million Americans and is a potentially serious sleep disorder. This problem is commonly associated with snoring and extremely irregular breathing throughout the night. In sleep apnea, breathing actually stops for as long as two minutes at a time while the individual is asleep. When breathing stops, the level of oxygen in the blood drops, resulting in oxygen deprivation. Sleep apnea can cause daytime sleepiness as well as be associated with other, more serious health problems.

Natural Solutions For Sleep

When designing a protocol for sleep using natural solutions, it is important to evaluate several sleep factors, including severity, duration, sleep patterns, diet, medications, exercise, hormonal status, and current stress levels. After these have been established, natural solutions for sleep and general wellness can be implemented. While melatonin is still popular for many people to fall asleep, statistically speaking, it does not do a great job of keeping you asleep. It just does not last long enough in your sleep receptors. The following natural solutions provide much better results without side effects for various levels of insomnia.

  1. CBD oil – in my professional opinion, I have not seen another natural product to rival the effectiveness of full-spectrum pharmaceutical-grade CBD oil for sleep. The sublingual liquid tincture appears to enter the bloodstream faster, bypass the liver and stomach and bind to the targeted brain receptors via the endocannabinoid system and do its job to induce REM sleep.
  2. Magnesiumagain, this mineral is highly recommended for anyone who has sleep issues. It does a great job of inducing relaxation and reducing nervous tension in the muscles.
  3. Sleep Perfect Formula is one of the most innovative blends of nutrients that promotes soothing and restful sleep. It supports healthy circadian rhythms and relaxes the entire body. Some of the key ingredients include valerian root, GABA, L-theanine,5-HTP, chamomile, hops, and passionflower. It also includes 3 mg of melatonin.

Generally speaking, there are no hard and fast rules about how much sleep is enough because every person’s needs are different. Some people can function on as little as five hours, while others perform best with nine or ten. Most adults require 7 to 8 hours to feel refreshed and operate at peak efficiency. Children and adolescents require more sleep. Seniors tend to sleep less through the night and awaken earlier than young people.

Natural Solutions for Arthritis


Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more joints. There are more than one hundred different arthritis types with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout topping the list of the most common and generally most severe forms. Typically, all forms of arthritis are characterized by pain and stiffness (especially in the morning or after exercise), swelling, tenderness, deformity, or diminished motion range. Bone growths or bone spurs may develop in the affected joints- increasing pain and decreasing mobility. You may also hear cracking or grinding noises when the joint moves. Does this sound familiar? Currently, more than 55 million Americans are suffering from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or gout. Arthritis and related musculoskeletal diseases are one of the primary sources of disability in the U.S. today. Maybe, you are one of the millions struggling with arthritis from old sports injuries, physical labor, or trauma. If so, this information will allow you to consider new therapeutic options that you may not have tried up until now to improve your range of motion, flexibility, and pain level.

Arthritis and its many different types is not a modern ailment, as you probably know, it has been with us since the beginning of time. To this day, modern conventional medicine is still not clear as to what the principal etiology or underlying cause of arthritis is, or why it occurs in so many people worldwide.

Healthy Joints Versus Arthritic Joints

In healthy joints, the synovial membrane is thin, the cartilage that covers bones is smooth, and a thin layer of synovial fluid covers the bones surfaces. A problem in any of these areas can cause arthritis. Arthritis may appear suddenly or come on gradually over the years. It is different for everyone. Some people feel a sharp burning or grinding pain, while others describe the pain as a dull ache similar to a toothache. Any movement of the joint tends to hurt, although sometimes there is only stiffness. The swelling and deformity in arthritic joints can result from a thickening of the synovial fluid, enlargement of the bones, increased secretion of synovial fluid, or some combination of these factors. Let us take a closer look at the three leading forms or types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout. Later on, we will explore natural solutions for reducing inflammation and improving your range of motion.

Factoids on Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and Gout

  • Osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, involves the deterioration of the cartilage protecting bones’ ends. It can be caused by a sports injury, trauma, or an inherited defect in the protein that forms cartilage. More commonly, it results from the wear and tear of aging, diet, and lifestyle. Other common risk factors include advanced age, female gender, obesity, history of physical labor, high-impact sports, trauma, and family history. Osteoarthritis affects the weight-bearing joints, including the knees, hips, and back most severely. Osteoarthritis rarely develops before age 40, but it affects nearly everyone past age 60 years.
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis – Rheumatoid arthritis is considered to be an autoimmune disorder. This means the immune system is overactive. An overactive immune system can be just as harmful as a weak one. In other words, rheumatoid arthritis is a situation where self-attacks-self. In this case, the body’s immune system improperly identifies the synovial membrane as foreign. Inflammation results, damaging the cartilage and tissues around the joints. The joint spaces become narrower, and bones fuse together. This creates stiffness, swelling, redness, sometimes fever, tenderness, and, most times, deformity and crippling later on. Rheumatoid arthritis happens in people less than 40 years of age, and almost 75 percent are female. Rheumatoid arthritis can be related to emotional stress, poor nutrition, and sometimes even bacterial or other infections.
  • Gout – many people do not realize that gout is an acute, inflammatory type of arthritis. It occurs most often in overweight persons and those who regularly indulge in rich foods and excess alcohol. It typically attacks the smaller joints of the feet and hands, especially the big toe. Deposits of crystallized uric acid salt in the joints cause swelling, redness, and a sensation of heat with extremely sharp excruciating pain. Approximately one million Americans suffer from gouty arthritis.

Non-Prescription Natural Alternatives For Arthritis

Through the years, high-quality natural products have proven to belong in the therapeutic space when it comes to improving the severity of arthritis and, at the same time, improving quality of life. Whether we are talking about herbal medicines, homeopathic products, nutritional supplements, or, more recently, pharmaceutical-grade CBD oil, they can reduce inflammation, increase blood flow, and promote healing. The following are some evidence-based, scientifically validated natural alternatives that I have recommended through the years with success. Remember, to buy quality products.

  1. Glucosamine & Chondroitin Sulfatethis well-known combination was first used in animals and later in humans to help rebuild connective tissue and cartilage – the substance that cushions the joints.
  2. Omega-3 Fish OilNo protocol for arthritis or joint inflammation should be without essential fatty acids from cold waters. Pharmaceutical-grade fish oil has been shown to be a potent anti-inflammatory and very helpful at reducing pain, stiffness, and swelling, especially in rheumatoid arthritis.
  3. Turmeric (Curcumin)Curcumin is the yellow-colored spice turmeric with powerful anti-inflammatory properties. It is probably the single most potent of natural remedies for reducing inflammation and pain associated with arthritis.
  4. Vitamin Cvitamin C has many different beneficial properties but is best known for increasing collagen and providing antioxidant protection. 1,000mg daily minimum should be taken with increases as per bowel tolerance.
  5. Magnesiumcofactor for more than 300 enzymatic reactions in the body, this mineral is commonly deficient in adults. It can improve muscle function and help calcium absorption into the bone matrix.
  6. InflamMovethis is a natural version of the prescription Celebrex, which is known as a Cox-2 inhibitor. This is the enzyme pathway responsible for pain and inflammation. By blocking this pathway, inflammation and pain are reduced.
  7. Collagen Factorsthis product provides added collagen to help support the rebuilding of cartilage and, at the same time, provide cushioning for the joints.
  8. Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance whose function is to retain water to keep your tissues hydrated and joints more lubricated to avoid friction or grinding.
  9. Probioticswith the proper bacterial strains of lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, this provides an intestinal balance of bacteria. 70% of inflammation starts in the gut or digestive tract.
  10. Gluten Digestive Enzymesthis unique supplement blocks absorption of gluten, which is known to increase inflammation. It also helps to breakdown proteins, carbs, and fats into fine particles for improved nutrient utilization.
  11. CBD oil – while this is the newcomer to the arthritis party, it certainly should be a strong contender for anyone suffering from the inflammation and pain associated with any form of arthritis. CBD is gaining popularity, and more clinical studies show that pharmaceutical grade third-party tested and validated full-spectrum hemp is very effective at reducing inflammation. It also is helping people with anxiety associated with pain, allowing them better quality sleep.

Closing Thoughts

We are all born with an innate healing system, and we are designed to live an active, physical life thanks to our strong and flexible musculoskeletal system. There is no substitute for being active and choosing exercises that you enjoy. If we become inactive as we age, bones weaken, muscles lose strength, and changes in balance and weight occur. To add to this equation, our joints are a common source of pain and inflammation. Being proactive and moving, stretching, swimming, walking, biking, and participating in resistance training for the joints can contribute to increased strength, stamina, and flexibility, resulting in less pain being elicited. You can do a lot to tune up and support your bones and muscles so that you can prevent arthritis from controlling how you live your life. Let’s get moving today!!!

Supplements in Trump’s COVID-19 Treatment

COVID-19 Supplements

Last week President Donald Trump revealed he had tested positive for COVID-19 and would begin treatment. His medical team revealed it is using a combination of medications and supplements that are thought to help mediate the virus. Since there is no definitive standard of care or one size fits all therapy for the novel virus, it is interesting to see how his medical team approaches treatment for the leader of the free world. In this article, we examine the nutritional supplements used in his COVID-19 treatment and how they may help.


Zinc: Zinc is an essential trace element involved in most major metabolic pathways. It has a vital role in maintaining immune function, reproduction, healthy skin, and growth. Immune cells must rapidly divide to respond to daily challenges and require adequate amounts of zinc to do so.

As a cofactor of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD), zinc is considered an antioxidant nutrient. Supplementation with zinc increases the antioxidant activity of SOD and provide increased free radical protection.

Zinc is thought to reduce viral replication and can be found in many over-the-counter cold supplements. When used in high doses, zinc can deplete copper, another essential trace mineral, so higher dose zinc supplements often contain copper to prevent deficiency.


Vitamin D: Vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin, is an essential vitamin that plays many roles in the proper functioning of the body. Though classified as a vitamin, it is a key regulatory hormone for calcium and bone metabolism. It is estimated that at least 40% of Americans are deficient in vitamin D.

Vitamin D has also been recognized as necessary for normal, healthy cell growth and function and healthy immune function. For COVID-19, vitamin D is thought to lower viral replication rates, boost the immune system, and reduce concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which product the inflammation that injures the lining of the lungs.

Read More: Can Vitamin D Reduce COVID-19 Infections?


Melatonin: Melatonin is associated with sleep, but it also plays a role in the immune system. Melatonin is a natural hormone synthesized from the amino acid tryptophan by the pineal gland in the back of the brain and is contained in small amounts in food. Melatonin appears to regulate sleep/wake cycles, support normal immune function, and protect cells from free radical damage.

For COVID-19, Melatonin may help reduce the severity of the immune system’s exaggerated inflammatory reaction. Melatonin supports normal immune function by helping maintain the activity of circulating natural killer cells. It also has been found to function as an antagonist for stress-induced immunosuppression. It is also considered a potent antioxidant that enters all body cells to help prevent free radical damage.


  • Vitamin C: Vitamin C is crucial for supporting oxidative stress, energy production, and immune function.
  • Quercetin: Helps reduce inflammatory lung response when used with zinc. It is believed to help zinc penetrate cells to fight COVID-19 at a cellular level.
  • Probiotics: Improves gut health and supports the immune system.
  • Immune Health Support: A comprehensive formula that provides essential vitamins and minerals for immune support along with a generous supply of specialized ingredients that have been shown to promote overall immune health.


The use of supplements by the President during this critical time demonstrates that they play a role even in “conventional medicine.” Nutritional supplements do not need to replace prescription medications. Some medications work better in conjunction with supplements to reduce side effects and alleviate drug-induced nutrient depletions. That said, some supplements should not be used in combination with certain medications, so it is always a good idea to check with a knowledgeable healthcare professional before starting something new. Pharmacists can examine your current medications and check for any contraindications.  They can also recommend an appropriate supplement plan for your health needs and goals. If you are looking to boost your immune system to fight COVID-19, supplements may play a role.

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