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There Is Hope For Digestive Problems


As the quality of the standard Canadian diet has continued to decline steadily, more individuals than ever before are being diagnosed with digestive problems. Celiac disease, IBS, and Crohn’s disease are much more prevalent today and for some people, may lead to a life of chronic digestive problems and abdominal pain.

While it may be easy to criticize the “gluten free” movement as a fad, it is important to understand that these conditions are now quite common among adults and children today. There is even research to suggest that 1 in 20 people have some form of gluten reactivity, many just won’t show it.

The human digestive tract is essentially a long “tube” that starts at the mouth and ends at, well, the other end. It is the job of the digestive organs, such as the stomach, pancreas, liver, gall bladder and intestines, to extract and absorb nutrients from the foods that you eat. Digestive enzymes and fluids are secreted to aid in this process and when functioning normally, this system is very efficient.

However, if the digestive tract becomes irritated by sugars, gluten, processed foods etc., absorption of nutrients and movement of waste will slow down causing a variety of symptoms. All of these symptoms, whether its celiac, Crohn’s or IBS start with inflammation.

Constipation, diarrhea, pain, bloating and bleeding are all signs that something is inflamed within the digestive system. Some of these symptoms may require emergency care, which is why parents should never ignore “tummy aches” in children, especially if accompanied by a fever.

Fortunately, for many people suffering from these illnesses, there is new research that provides hope. Diets that focus on eliminating common foods that cause the inflammation, tend to produce the best results.

A wheat-free, grain-free, diet low in refined sugars and processed foods can give the digestive tract a chance to heal and repair, causing many of the symptoms associated with these digestive problems to resolve in a relatively short period of time.

For some people with chronic digestive problems, the solution may be as simple as introducing more water and natural fiber into the diet. Also, a diet rich in dense, plant-based fiber creates a “scrubbing” effect in the colon and has been shown to reduce inflammation in the small and large intestine.

Finally, you should consider a trip to your family chiropractor. Not only is he/she trained to provide you with nutritional counselling, we have found that chiropractic adjustments help normalize the nerves that control the digestive tract.

This was shown recently in a study of 57 Crohn’s Disease patients receiving chiropractic care. Proper nervous system function is always an important factor in nutrient absorption and colon motility and can make all the difference in world for individuals suffering with digestive problems.

[LIVE EVENT] Sleep School – March 30, 7 PM


Wednesday, March 30 – 7pm

Revolution Health – 405 West 5th Ave. Vancouver BC


Do you have trouble falling asleep at night?

Do you feel tired in the mornings even after a full night’s sleep?

Do you find yourself hitting a “wall” every afternoon after lunch?

The solution: Hack your sleep for the best nights rest of your life!

Using the latest information and technology,  we will explore the steps you can take to radically improve your sleep and sleep habits.

You will learn:

  • How to tell if your are sleep deprived (it’s not as simple as you think!)
  • Health issues that are (surprisingly) linked to a lack of sleep
  • Why shiftwork is hazardous to your health
  • How much sleep do we REALLY need and can we get too much?
  • Top stress busting techniques for restful sleep
  • The best methods to create an optimal sleeping environment
  • Best sleep habits to ensure a good night’s rest


Wednesday, March 30 – 7pm

Revolution Health – 405 West 5th Ave. Vancouver BC

Organic Food Shopping Without Breaking The Bank


Organic food has been growing in popularity over the past few years. Look in any major supermarket and typically, you will now find a relatively small organic produce section.

Study after study not only shows that organic produce is more nutritious than regular produce, it is also safer to eat due to the decreased pesticide use and its utilization of natural farming practices.

However, with the current high cost of food, it can seem difficult for people to justify purchasing the more expensive organic foods.

It’s worth it! Here are some basic tips on buying organic on a budget:

  1. Avoid packaged “health” foods. Packaged foods are generally more expensive that produce. Chips, pizza and frozen treats cost much more than natural produce.

  1. Buy in bulk. Organic produce will generally keep for a week. This also saves multiple trips to the grocery store.

  1. Buy local, buy seasonal. Local produce is cheaper because of decreased shipping costs. Also, when local produce is in season it is usually less expensive than at other times of the year. Farmer’s Markets are excellent sources of local, inexpensive produce.

  1. Prioritize your purchases. Skip the packaged snacks and make your own snacks instead. Organic nuts seeds and vegetables are far better snacks for the kids than potato chips and pizza pops.

  1. Chose organic meats. With growing demand for items like wild salmon and grass-fed beef and bison, some supermarkets are now carrying these formerly hard-to-find items. The good news is; these products tend to be only slightly more expensive than regular meats, but you’ll have to shop around to find them.

Finally, shoppers should realize that the term “organic” is not a heavily regulated term in Canada. Many companies develop their own “organic” labeling and certification process and there is really no standard here.

Check your labels, ask your grocer where your food comes from and how it was produced. Know what you are putting in your body at all times. Choose organic when available and don’t forget to follow these important tips when shopping.


[LIVE EVENT] Next-Level Nutrition Secrets – Feb 24, 7PM

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Healthy eating doesn’t have to be complicated.

Counting calories and fad diets might yield temporary results but are often hard to maintain.

Our program teaches you the secrets to permanently improving your metabolism, energy levels, performance and weight loss through healthy eating.

This workshop will teach you the latest and greatest food hacks/secrets that are turning “conventional wisdom” into “old wives tales.”

You will learn:

  • The three healthiest foods you need to add to your diet today
  • Hormone balancing through food timing
  • Foods that help maintain and energy levels throughout the day
  • Functional nutrition for athletes
  • Identifying and avoiding toxic foods
  • Food planning, quick and easy meal prep
  • Where to shop for healthy food in Vancouver, without breaking the bank $$$

and much more….

Limited Seating, so reserve your spot today!

Revolution Health – 405 West 5th Avenue Vancouver, BC V5Y 1J9 CA – View Map

Why I Don’t Make New Year’s Resolutions (And What To Do Instead)


We are almost three weeks into 2016 and many people will participate in the popular annual ritual of setting New Years Resolutions to reclaim health, lose weight, save money, or some combination of the above.

Unfortunately, research has shown that only 8% will achieve their goals this year. In fact, the highest rate of failure will occur within the first few days of the new year!

Why do most New Year’s resolutions fail? There are many factors at play here but, in my opinion, I believe most people fail because they lack one or more of the following:

Lack of a plan:

Most people set their goals haphazardly and often only because the change in calendar year prompted them to do so. Goals need to be clear, well thought-out and specific. They need actionable steps with deadlines. With a solid plan, it is possible to take a large task and break it down into smaller, more manageable chunks. This also makes it easier to monitor progress. For example, if there are 10 steps to losing weight, and I’ve only completed 3 steps, then that goal is 30% complete.

Lack of support/accountability:

Most people are perfectly fine with breaking promises to themselves but will fight much harder to keep from disappointing others. Why is a promise made to yourself less valuable than a promise made to someone else? The answer is accountability. Stating your resolutions and goals out loud and in public, will give you some extra motivation because now others are watching. Also, if you can partner with someone who is trying to achieve something similar, you can always motivate each other.

Lack of consequences:

Its easy enough to break a resolution made only to ourselves after all, no one will ever know if we’ve failed. Everyone breaks resolutions so who cares? Better luck next year. Its often beneficial to set a minor consequence for not completing a goal, especially if you have someone to hold you accountable. It’s classic behavior modification. For example: Failure to meet financial goals requires you to train for and run a 5K.

Since traditional New Years resolutions have a high rate of failure, I suggest skipping this annual ritual all together and opting for something more simple: A RECIPE.

A recipe is a perfect analogy for how a resolution should be created: We have a resolution/picture (in our mind) of the finished product (for example: a delicious grass-fed steak). Then we need to gather the ingredients (steak, salt and pepper, butter) and create actionable steps to move us closer to our goal (cook in a cast iron skillet at med-high heat for 2-3 min per side).

So what can we do to improve our chances of success in 2016? Choose recipes instead!

Here are some rules for achieving success:

  1. The get a buddy rule – There is truly strength in numbers when it comes to resolutions. Whether it is a workout buddy or a mentor to bounce ideas off, increase your odds of success by asking others to hold you accountable.
  2. The hire an expert rule – Stuck at the same weight for years? Workout program derailed by the same nagging injuries year after year? Maybe its time to skip the self-help route and seek the expertise of someone better trained.
  3. The keep it simple rule – The human brain can only keep track of 2 or 3 to-do items at a time. Keep your goals short and simple. You can always add more once you’ve completed the first few.
  4. The be specific rule – The more detail about your goal, the better: Where will you workout? How much is a membership? What time will you schedule you fitness? Do you need to buy new equipment? etc.

Of course we could add many more tips, but that would be breaking our rule of simplicity wouldn’t it? Start with these and set new goals as the original ones are completed. Chip away at each one daily and monitor your progress along the way.

Finally, a wise man was once asked: “If you were forced to do so, how would you eat an elephant?” He replied: “One bite at a time.” Keep this in mind when setting goals for 2016.

What are your thoughts? Join the discussion on our Facebook Page!

If you need some extra help, and are in the Vancouver, BC area, join us on Wednesday, January 2oth at 6:15pm for Part One of our “New Year, New You” series: How to Make Nutrition and Fitness Resolutions That Last.


How To Make New Years Resolutions That Last

vancouver chiropractor

New Year’s celebrations are an ideal time to reflect on our past success and challenges, as well as make new plans for the future.

Whether you resolve to make better health choices this year, change careers or begin that weekend project you’ve been putting off, New Years resolutions are essentially promises we make to ourselves to be better than we were last year.

However, many people will start the year out right with a new routine, motivation and a gym pass in hand only to fall back into same old routines and bad habits once the holidays are over.

In fact, the average New Years resolution will fail within a few short days of the start of the calendar year.

The reason for this is the difference between simply being motivated to change vs. being truly inspired to improve your health and subsequently, your life. In other words, if there is no purpose behind the change, other than a new calendar year, then chances of success are low.

How many diet/exercise/nutrition books did you read this year? Great information is exciting and can motivate you to make some changes in your life, but these changes are only temporary when there is no inspiration to continue.

How can someone get truly inspired to improve his or her health? Consider these statistics:

● Canada is the seventh most obese country in the world according to World Health Organization statistics.

● Diabetes rates have increased 70% since 1995. Type II diabetes is no longer called “adult-onset” because it now occurs in children as young as five.

● Heart disease and cancer are the top two disease killers, most of which can be attributed to lifestyle.

This year, instead of making the same old New Years resolutions, decide to make permanent, lasting, transformational changes for your family’s health.

Remember, change doesn’t happen overnight. It will take planning, research and commitment to make it happen, so stick with it!

Thankfully, there are plenty of resources out there to help you. If you are in the Vancouver, BC area, check out one of live events in 2016. 

You can also join us on

Also, if you need some extra help, send me an email and I’ll be happy to point you in the right direction. Make it a great year!

Don’t Believe the Hype: Facts About the Flu

FluFlu season is upon us and Canadians are already dreading the announcement of this year’s swine/avian/human flu threat. With flu season comes, fevers, runny noses, aches and pains, missed work and school days. The flu can be either a mild annoyance or a serious illness.

Because of this, it can be difficult separating fact from fiction and reason from sensationalism when it comes to the flu virus. Each individual experience can differ from person to person.

Influenza is a virus that takes many forms. Prevailing strains of flu virus will differ from season to season and no two flu viruses are alike.

While there is a lot media attention paid to the dangers of the flu, the reality is most cases of the flu are relatively mild and tend to resolve themselves over time.

The flu virus is an opportunistic organism and tends to produce symptoms mainly in those with weak immune systems such as the sick and elderly.

One important fact that is often missed by the media is that healthy people can also be carriers of the flu without actually being sick or showing symptoms.

Its well known that in the young or old, healthy or sick, flu shot or not, the actual flu virus can live on hands, under fingernails, and within the respiratory tract of healthy people. Consequently, the flu virus can be spread by sneezing or through touch, with or without active infection.

While there is some evidence showing the effectiveness of vitamin D and other natural supplements, the single most effective way to prevent the flu or any virus, is through good hygiene.

The Mayo clinic has recommended a proper hand washing technique of 30 seconds of vigorous scrubbing with warm water. Antibacterial soaps are not necessary to achieve this effect. Alcohol based hand sanitizers are somewhat less effective but still good when hand washing is not available.

When it comes to preventing the flu, it can sometimes be difficult to separate fact from fiction. Hand washing, proper hygiene, staying home when you get sick, and trying to keep your immune system strong throughout the winter months are time tested methods to prevent the spread of the flu. As always, your best defense against the flu is prevention.

Examining The Science Of Weight Loss [Part 2]

weightlossIn my previous column, we examined the science of weight loss. While conventional wisdom states that eating too many calories will cause us to gain weight, the science supporting this idea doesn’t always hold up.

As we continue to investigate, we find that the current obesity epidemic is a complicated problem, with multiple causes and individual differences in susceptibility. In other words: What works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for another.

However, there are a few simple principles of health and nutrition that may be true for the majority of people seeking to lose weight.

The first and most important step a person can take is to begin by eating natural, real foods. This would include foods found on the periphery of the grocery store – vegetables, fruits, nuts, lean proteins – and not the packaged and canned foods down the aisles.

Packaged foods contain high amounts of sugar, salt and hydrogenated fats, all of which have been shown to contribute to the obesity epidemic by stimulating pleasure centres in the brain.

In his book, “Salt, Sugar and Fat,” Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Moss investigated the practice of the packaged food industry to chemically engineer addictive food products.

The optimum amount of sugar in a product became known as the “bliss point.” Food inventors and scientists spend a huge amount of time formulating the perfect amount of sugar that will send us over the moon,” he said.

Avoiding foods that are chemically engineered to make us eat more of them would be a good starting point.

The second most important factor, when it comes to weight loss, is understanding that the problem goes beyond food. Frequent movement and exercise may be just as important as what we eat.

For example, a recent study of 800,000 people found that sitting and inactivity increased the incidence of diabetes, heart disease and all-cause mortality. The interesting thing about these results is that they were independent of any exercise session. In other words: An hour of exercise a few days a week, was not as effective as shorter duration movements throughout the day.

Considering the fact that only 15% of all Canadians meet the required amount of daily exercise, it is clear there are other factors at play in the obesity epidemic.

Take time for 15-minute fitness breaks throughout the day. Exercise does not have to be difficult or painful. It could be as simple as a walk around the block, playing with your kids, taking the stairs instead or playing sports. The key is to move frequently.

Finally, a discussion of weight loss would be incomplete without acknowledging the role that stress and sleep deprivation play in weight gain.

The fact is, most Canadians are stressed and sleep deprived. The average person gets only 6.9 hours of sleep a night. This is simply not enough for proper rest and recovery from a stressful day.

Chronic sleep deprivation changes affect how hormones like leptin, ghrelin, cortisol and insulin store fat. Fortunately, getting eight hours of sleep, proper nutrition and exercise can reset these hormones over time.

Weight loss fads may come and go over the years, but basic principles of health and wellness such as proper nutrition, exercise and sleep, will always withstand the test of time.

Remember that healthy weight loss should always be a product of a healthy lifestyle and not necessarily the main objective.

Examining The Science of Weight Loss [Part 1]

Weight lossMost Canadians, approximately 61%, are considered overweight or obese. Weight loss is a billion-dollar industry consisting of how-to books, fat-burning supplements and surgical procedures designed to curb appetite and shed pounds.

While there are many diets and programs that claim to help you lose weight, very few of them have stood up to scientific scrutiny and have withstood the test of time.

Early weight-loss diets focused mainly on caloric intake. Researchers thought that weight gain was exclusively due to eating too many calories.

Simply put: We were consuming too much energy from food and not expending the same amount of energy through daily activity. Consequently, the leftover calories were then stored as fat.

While this model appeared to be correct at the extreme ends of the spectrum, restricting calories without paying attention to food quality proved to not be the healthiest approach.

By the 1970s, researchers believed that over-consumption of saturated fat was the reason people became overweight. Partially based on the work of Dr. Ansel Keys, saturated fat became Public Enemy No. 1 for the next 40 years.

Canadians were encouraged to do away with traditional cooking oils, such as lard and butter, and replace them with vegetable oils and margarine. Unfortunately, obesity and heart disease rates skyrocketed during this period of fat phobia, especially among children.

There has recently been renewed interest in low-carbohydrate diets. The first recorded use of a low-carbohydrate diet to treat obesity was in 1863 and was the standard of care up until the 1940s. Today, many people who have incorporated a low-carbohydrate diet have already experienced incredible results.

This is because the “Standard Canadian Diet” consists of a large refined carbohydrate intake from bread, rice, pasta, sugars, sodas and juices. The Canada Food Guide even recommends that the majority of our calories come from refined carbohydrates.

Unfortunately, excess carbohydrates (sugars) are quickly stored as fat. Also. many new studies have shown that excessive carbohydrate intake leads to obesity, heart disease, diabetes and even certain cancers.

It would seem that replacing refined carbohydrates with healthy proteins, vegetables, some fruits, nuts and good fats could dramatically improve overall health and keep the weight off.

However, this is only one piece of the obesity puzzle.

Newer studies point to certain packaged foods as a culprit in the obesity epidemic. They are cheap, readily available and these “foods” are now chemically engineered to stimulate pleasure sites in the brain.

Essentially, food companies are now creating addictions in adults and children and some people can’t help but eat foods that are unhealthy.

As time goes on, we find that obesity is a more complicated issue than simply what and how much we eat. Additional studies have shown individual differences in weight loss due to vitamin D levels, stress, quality of sleep may also play a role.

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to weight loss. However, there are some basic principles that hold true for (almost) everyone.

In my next column, we will review simple lifestyle changes you can make to for healthy weight loss.

You Are What Your Mom Ate

mom nutrition

A growing number of researchers believe a mother’s nutritional status before and during pregnancy, may be one of the critical periods in our lives with respect to developing optimal health.

Influencing everything from brain function, IQ and even fat metabolism, a mother’s nutrition during pregnancy (and even before pregnancy) may be the single most important factor in determining lifelong health for your child.

The idea that a mother’s nutritional status can have an effect on a child’s future health is not a new concept. The theory, first proposed by British researcher David J. Barker in the 1980s, has even spawned a new field of study called “The Developmental Origins of Health and Disease.”

Many conditions such as: certain cancers, allergies, asthma, autoimmune disease, mental illness and some degenerative conditions have already been studied for their fetal origins.

In short, the environment – particularly the environment within the womb – has the ability to re-write your genes and determine your future health.

Unfortunately, other than suggesting mothers take a multivitamin and folic acid supplements, moms-to-be are given very little nutritional advice. Hardly any are given “pre-conception” nutritional advice.

Here are some general nutritional recommendations during pregnancy. Everyone is slightly different so make sure you speak to your healthcare provider for more specific recommendations:

  1. Do not diet. Now is not the time to go low calorie. You are, in fact, eating for two. Weight gain is a natural part of the process.

  2. Eat green, leafy vegetables every day. Include some fruit, such as berries.

  3. Increase carbs, but make sure they are the right kind. Pastas, rice and grains while high in carbohydrate content, carry very little nutritional value compared to vegetables and starchy tubers, like sweet potatoes and yams.

  4. Increase good fats. Wild caught fish, grass-fed beef, nuts, butter, omega 3 supplements, olive oil are just some examples of good, healthy fats.

  5. Avoid sugar and packaged foods. Junk food carries very little nutritional value and is full of chemicals. To stave off cravings, opt for protein and fat instead.

These recommendations, based on whole, nutrient dense foods, will help give your child a head start in life.