Kristen Sparrow, MD Acupuncture
Ancient Medicine Made Modern
August 2015 
Prebiotics, Probiotics and Your Brain

I wanted to share a few things I learned from a book called "Brain Maker" about diet, your microbiome, and your nervous system and brain.  Scroll down to read more!
SF Hill View to Headlands

Practice and Research News

It's been a busy summer, but I would love to fit you in for an appointment.  I'm exploring the use of an ear stimulation device in the clinic to help increase vagal activity, or the" rest and digest" aspect of treatment.  Some courageous patients are even trying it at home since they've had such positive results in the clinic.  I'm studying the effects with my stress monitor in addition to clinical response, always in hopes of a breakthrough! 

My  Hypertension study was cited in the lead editorial for the July Issue of Medical Acupuncture on Stress, Cancer, and Acupuncture. and I've posted that commentary on the blog.  As we've discussed in the newsletter and the blog, the stress response can be detrimental to health, mood, immunity, and life span.  Cancer can definitely be affected by stress, which is why acupuncture may be of benefit in addition to pain relief.

I will presenting at the Society for Acupuncture Research Meeting in November in Boston and hope to have some interesting findings to discuss.

Brain Maker and the Microbiome

"Brain Maker: Mastering the microbiome to heal and protect your brain"  by David Perlmutter explores the effect that our gut bacteria (part of our microbiome) have on our brain health.  Modern life has made our gut bacteria less diverse which leads to many different adverse effects.  He maintains that poor gut biome leads to
inflammation, anxiety and depression, tendency toward obesity, and various brain afflictions found in advanced societies (Alzheimer's, Autism, Parkinson's.)  (Further discussion on Parkinson's and the gut at Michael J Fox's website here.)
Causes for a weak microbiome include antibiotics  and GMO foods, among other causes.
He recommends probiotics (these 5--> lactobacillus plantarum,  lactobacillus acidopophilus, lactobacillus brevis, bifidobacterum lactis, and bifidobacterium longum.)
He also recommends "prebiotics", which are foods that feed good bacteria.   I listed a few in the blog post on this book.
One of my patients alerted me to the fact that there is an abbreviated version of the book  on Kindle  also that Dr. Agus  on CBS morning news discussing this same issue and the link to the vagus nerve (my research interest)  click on the photo. (Thanks Margaret!!)
I'm hoping that  with self help such as diet, meditation, and breathing along with acupuncture and maybe some at home ear stimulation, patients will really benefit from greater "rest"  and better "digest"ion and have better mood, longer life, better immunity, less pain.

Lifetime Achievement Award
As some patients know, I'm  an avid fan of The Bar Method, and achieved a lifetime achievement award having completed more than 1,000 classes.  Patient persistence?  Grim determination?  Lack of imagination?  Your choice...

Hope to see you soon.  As always, more at the blog.  Live well and be well!



Dr. Kristen Sparrow

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