Why are Chronic Disorders on The Rise?
Kids really know how to lighten up a room. They lift hearts with their smiles and fill the silence with laughter. Better yet, they also give us a reason to crawl on the floor, play in the sand, blow bubbles, hug unconditionally and love with pure joie de vivre! So, when illness steals the light and smiles from their eyes, it leaves us floundering. It’s not natural to see a child without energy.
1 in every 2 American children has a diagnosed chronic illness and sadly this number is rising. – Tweet this!
Environmental toxins. Environmental toxins lead to inflammation. Toxins surround us. Exposure pushes the body’s immune system over to the TH2 side, which increases inflammation and leads to chronic disease. Toxins also damage the body’s detoxification mechanisms, making it increasingly difficult to rid our bodies of the toxins causing the problem in the first place.
Toxins can be found in cleaning products, cookware, body care and beauty products, and even in the water. – Tweet this!
Gut flora. We are only as good as our mother’s gut bacteria. If the mom has unhealthy bacteria, her children acquire them from the vaginal tract at birth, predisposing them to sickness.
Cesarean-section babies acquire the bacteria from their surroundings and have a high rate of illnesses, as do children who are formula fed. – Tweet this!
GMO foods. Minor genetic changes to our foods alter them just enough to cause our immune system to view their proteins as invaders instead of food. The most common foods genetically modified are corn, soy, canola and dairy.
Climate change. There is a correlation between increasing carbon dioxide emissions and allergies.
Higher carbon dioxide levels in the environment increase plant growth. But more plants mean more pollen, leading to more allergies and inflammation. – Tweet this!
Antibiotic exposure. Doctors these days hand out antibiotics like candy, but the drugs end up killing not only the bad germs, but also essential healthy germs in our gut, thereby increasing inflammation. Although antibiotics are good for certain ailments, it is extremely important to use this option sparingly because it has such a dramatic effect on our gut flora.
Hygiene. Surprisingly, germs are good for us. Exposure to them helps keep our immune system strong. Sanitizing soaps, hand sanitizers and various antibacterial cleaners are keeping our kids too clean and sheltered from many germs and not allowing their bodies to develop immunity.
Epigenetics. This term refers to the study of the change in how our genes function without the DNA structure becoming physically mutated. Many factors affect how our genes are expressed, including lifestyle, nutrition, stress, medication, disease and environmental toxins. – Tweet this!
These changes can also be passed on to our offspring.
Methylation defects. Methylation is a cellular process that turns genes on and off. Some researchers theorize that abnormal methylation function is one reason behind epigenetic changes. Methylation is also a key aspect of our detoxification metabolism; if its defective, toxins are even more harmful to the immune system. Improved methylation function allows our genes to function better.
What are different ways you can lower your family’s exposure to toxins? Please share them below!
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Madiha Saeed, MD ABIHM
Holistic Mom, MD
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I am a practicing family physician and an integrative holistic family physician, in Illinois!My book “The Holistic Rx: Your Guide to Healing Chronic Inflammation and Disease” was #1 new release in 4 categories and a best seller on Amazon, all before the official launch.The book has since been picked up by medical schools. We are changing the face of medicine!!!I’m the director of education at Documenting Hope - a national organization dedicated to heal chronic disease in children, a writer for Holistic Primary Care and a proud mother of 4 holistically-raised boys (who share their healthy habits on YouTube). On social media I'm HolisticMomMD . I speak nation wide igniting the world with my energy and passion to start a healing revolution! I have appeared on the Thriving Child Summit and I am the featured speaker for many more summits including the Shift Network's Winter of Wellness 2018 Summit – the most prestigious holistic online event (www.winterofwellness.com). I will be the featured guest on multiple episodes of the Emmy nominated medical lifestyle show Ask Dr. Nandi speaking on parenting and healing chronic illness.