Do you adhere to your diet and exercise religiously, only to find yourself still gaining weight? Chances are, your best efforts are routinely sabotaged by “obesogens,” a dangerous synthetic hormone, which has attracted the attention of the White House because of the threat it could be posing to Americans. On May 11, the White House published a report, “Solving the Problem of Childhood Obesity Within a Generation,” which stated that obesogens could be contributing to America’s obesity epidemic by tricking the body’s metabolic rates to slow down. According to an article from the National Institute of Health, “it seems quite likely that obesogen exposure will play an important role in the current obesity epidemic.”How do obesogens do this? More importantly, how can you protect yourself?Obesogens are endocrine disrupting chemicals, which are also referred to by scientists as “EDCs.” The endocrine system is made up of different glands including the commonly known hypothalamus, pancreas, pituitary, thyroid and reproductive organs, each of which act as messengers by producing different hormones. These hormones are important because they activate certain biological responses and influence how our bodies develop and grow. For example, hormones from the reproductive organs-estrogen and testosterone-affect maturation and reproductive function, while the hormone insulin controls blood sugar levels. In healthy individuals, these hormones act like specialty messages to keep the body functioning properly. Obesogens are thought to mimic these important messages.But what if these “imposter” hormones were conveying incorrect messages that threatened to damage your entire biological system instead of sending your body the correct messages it needs to function properly?This is exactly how endocrine disruptors like obesogens work. EDCs have emerged as a major health concern over the past fifty years, when industries ranging from manufacturing to agriculture increased the use of synthetic chemicals in their products, pesticides, packaging, and more. These chemicals have turned up more frequently in products we use everyday, from the plastic in our water bottles to the shampoo in our showers. Increasing data suggests that the more Americans consume, the greater and more widespread the consequences.Scientists have found strong evidence that endocrine disruptors might be the cause behind a host of mounting national health problems, such as reproductive disorders and certain cancers, particularly breast and prostate. Some scientists also predict that younger generations will experience unprecedented health issues as a result of absorbing more harmful endocrine disruptors over a greater time period than their predecessors. This is the first time, however, that a direct link has been found between synthetic hormones and weight gain, hence the new term, “obesogens.”Obesogens are a particularly dangerous type of EDC because we ingest them directly into our bodies through food and they imitate metabolic hormones, slowing metabolic rate (metabolism), which is a known cause of obesity. As a result, the “traditional” means of losing weight, diet and exercise, may not work. In fact, an individual attempting to lose weight the traditional way will actually be fighting against what the body believes to be genuine hormonal messages. The great majority of Americans who eat a standard and even “healthy” diet have been exposed to obesogens, possibly making this an incredibly widespread issue. Did we mention that 200 million Americans are overweight? Overweight and obese individuals are known to be at risk for heart disease, cancer and type II diabetes, not to mention the possibility of a host of other issues under current exploration.Luckily, the battle of our bodies versus obesogens is not hopeless. The surest way to avoid obesogens from the body is to embrace a natural diet and lifestyle. Ideally, this means eliminating processed foods and taking up an organic diet. Make sure that you are purchasing not only organic fruits and vegetables, but also meat. A cow that has been fed corn that was grown with pesticides may still contain obesogens when it makes its way to the grocery store.This dangerous chemical cycle of plant to animal to water is what makes obesogens so common. As a result, they are prevalent in tap water. Purchasing an at-home carbon water filter will ensure that you eliminate endocrine disrupters from the water you drink unless you drink from plastic water bottles where obesogens are leeched from the container itself. You may also want to consider a similar filter for your shower as many substances can be absorbed through the skin.Become aware of instances when any of your food has close contact with plastic (ie. water bottles, packaging etc.), especially at elevated temperatures. These containers can leech bisphenol-A (BPA), an obesogen and endocrine disruptor. Avoid heating or microwaving foods in plastic containers as this releases the chemical and limit your consumption of canned foods, another known source for BPA’s.All of these are great tips for avoiding obesogens, but how do you deal with endocrine disruptors already present in your system?Some experts contend that the only way to really re-balance your body is through detoxification. One such protocol was developed by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons. He found that the hypothalamus gland in the center of the brain is the only organ in contact with every cell. It is the central command tower so to speak. As a result, Simeons concluded that it is vital to healthy metabolism and fat storage. He also found that hCG, when combined with a specific protocol can be successful in detoxification of this ever-important gland. All hCG programs, however, are not considered equal. Be sure to select a program which includes detoxification, stabilization, endocrine support, digestive/enzyme support and education to ensure lasting results.
For many years now I have been treating men suffering with conditions such as; male factor infertility (poor sperm parameters), premature ejaculation, erectile dysfunction, low libido (testosterone), and prostate conditions such as prostatitis, BPH, and chronic pelvic pain (CPPS). I have come to some overarching conclusions about the treatment and prognosis of these conditions, and not surprisingly, they are not that dis-similar to one another.First and foremost, if treatment is to be successful, it is of absolute importance that the partner be 110% supportive of the man and their challenges. If this piece is not present, I see only very minimal improvement if that. The male ego is a powerful thing, and when conditions of the reproductive organs arise, the utmost of sensitivity surrounding the subject must be exercised at all times. If a partner gets upset, angry, frustrated, sad, or withdrawn, the condition most likely will snowball into something increasingly difficult to treat. These conditions most often are present with a certain degree of psychosomatic etiology (mental emotional causes of physical symptoms), but an non-supportive partner will most certainly and exponentially worsen the issue, and end up causing a multitude of other problems as well. In these cases I see men become half the man they used to be. The guilt of not being able to provide their loved one with very basic needs eats away at the very core of what being a man is all about. They either bury themselves into a cave or do absolutely everything in their power to make things better, just to make their partner happy again. The programming of love only coming if their penis is working right installs itself so quickly, and is difficult to reverse. The reality is, unless major work is done individually (both partners), often the only cure for these conditions is a dissolution of the relationship.When men do have the support of their partners the scenario is much brighter, prognosis much better. From my perspective, at a point such as this, I am allowed to focus treatment 1/2 on the actual organic issue, and 1/2 on the mental-emotional component, instead of constantly just trying to keep the mans emotional life on an even keel. This 50/50 treatment principle creates the space necessary for holistic healing and incremental improvement of the condition in question. I feel, with this environment, treatment with traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture can improve conditions, most often, to a point where quality of life is re-established and long-term healing can be expected.With any of the above mentioned health conditions, a minimum of 12 acupuncture treatments (1/week for 12 weeks or 2/wk for 6 weeks) is required to both understand how to properly treat the condition and to display improvement. Additionally, 3 months of Chinese herbal medicine is most often administered alongside the acupuncture treatments. The combination of the two drastically affects the overall efficacy of my treatment protocols. There may also be a few supplements (vitamins) recommended, as well as lifestyle and dietary changes. Often, other types of treatment may be encouraged, such as couselling or coaching, as working through the emotional component of any condition is so important, especially for men (despite our reluctance!). It should also be noted that additional courses of treatment may be required to bring-fourth lasting effect.It should be emphasized that these health conditions, or any for that matter, are most often a reflection of deeper underlying patterns that should be addressed. The sooner the ‘whole’ health of the man is taken into consideration, the greater the chances of feeling better overall, AND averting more serious health conditions down the road. Recent correlations between poor semen parameters and testicular or prostate cancer is quite conclusive. The semen being an accurate bio-marker for other diseases gives us a benchmark for determining male health and prognosis for other conditions. If this is not motivation for looking after oneself then I throw my hands in the air and bow down to the power of ‘stubborn’!