Heatstroke 101:

9 Aug

By Dr. Danielle Schwaderer

It’s a scorcher out there today in Southern California and many other parts of the world…knowing how to avoid and treat heat stroke and heat exhaustion is valuable in hot climates. Heats troke has been found to effect 17 – 26 people per 100,000 in urban areas of the US, with heat illness effecting far more individuals. Elderly individuals, athletes, and young children are most at risk for developing heat stroke. Heat stroke occurs when the core body temperature reaches temperatures of 101 – 104 degrees (F), overwhelming the thermoregulation centers of the body which is extremely dangerous and in some cases, fatal. Heat exhaustion, is a less severe form of heat stroke, and can lead to heat stroke if not handled appropriately.

Common Signs and Symptoms:

Understanding the signs and symptoms of heat stroke is valuable for those exposed to hot climates to prevent cellular injury and in worst cases, death. Common signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion/heat stroke may include the following:

  • Headache
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Anxiety
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid heartbeat/pulse
  • Muscle tenderness
  • Cool clammy skin
  • Confusion/agitation (sign of heat stroke)

How to Handle Heat stroke / Heat Exhaustion:

For those experiencing confusion, agitation, or difficulty moving the body, receiving immediate medical attention is urgent, as IV fluid repletion is critical. For others who are experiencing symptoms associated with heat exhaustion, the following recommendations should be considered:

  • Move person out of sun and into a shady/cool spot
  • Drink fluids – water or electrolytes. Avoid alcohol and caffeine
  • Loosen clothing
  • Apply cool wet cloth to forehead and/or back of the neck
  • Fan the person or spray with water mist to allow cooling
  • Submerge body in cool water
  • Lay person down and elevate legs
  • Monitor the person and call 911 if they deteriorate, faint, become more confused, or start seizing

How to Avoid Heat stroke:

Avoiding heat related injury in the first place is crucial in hot climates. From dietary considerations to proper planning/packing when in warmer climates can provide a lot of protection for heat related illnesses.

  • Avoiding sun exposure on hot days is the first protective measure one can take. Finding shady spots, when having to be outdoors on scorching days will help keep the body temperature in normal ranges.
  • Stay in air-conditioned areas.
  • Avoid or limit exercise/physical exertion outdoors on hot days.
  • Keep water on you at all times – always carry water bottles (preferably non-plastic) full of water to drink and rehydrate throughout the day. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink, thirst is a sign of dehydration.
  • Bring a cold washcloth /towel and apply to back of the neck.
  • Eat foods with salt – as prevention when in extremely hot environments. This will prevent fluid loss.
  • Avoid foods/drinks containing sugar- this can potentiate fluid loss.
  • Eat foods that are cooling, contain water, and disperse heat (according to chinese medicine principles) during periods of hot climates – Cucumber, lettuce, mixed greens, radish, zucchini, squash, celery, asparagus, mushrooms, cabbage, tomato, watermelon, kelp, seaweed, crab, cilantro. Raw is best, but lightly steaming these veggies is also effective.



Healthy and EASY Breakfast Idea

1 Jun

Do you wake in the morning and the very last thing you want to do is eat breakfast, let alone make it? You are not alone! Although breakfast should be the biggest meal of the day, too many individuals struggle to even choke down a single bite of food. For my patients who don’t want to make an elaborate breakfast, I recommend a banana or apple with 1-2 tablespoons of almond butter (or other nut butter, other than peanut), straight off the spoon. This simple recommendation is paleo-friendly, grain-free, and provides fiber and essential fats which can stabilize hunger, blood sugar, mood, cognitive function and provides support to the adrenal glands.

The Simple Breakfast To Hold You Over Until Lunch:

  • 1-2 tablespoons of Almond butter (or Cashew, macadamia, hazelnut)
  • 1 medium banana
  • Nutrition Summary (1 tbls almond butter): 205 Calories, 8g Fat, 30g Carbohydrates, 4g Protein, 5g Fiber

Apple Variation:

  • 1-2 tablespoons of Almond butter (or Cashew, macadamia, hazelnut)
  • 1 medium fuji apple
  • Nutrition Summary (1 tbls almond butter): 165 Calories, 8g Fat, 20g Carbohydrates, 3g Protein, 5g Fiber

Protein & Fat is Essential at Breakfast Time:

Throw away that cereal and milk! Protein and fat are the most important macro-nutrients to consume at breakfast time. By consuming protein and fat, the body can release glucose slow and steadily to the blood stream preventing dramatic spikes in blood sugar. Blood sugar stabilization is the key to preventing the “fight or flight” stress response which takes a toll on the adrenal glands over time. additionally, protein and fat allow the body to feel full for a longer period of time, allowing one to consume fewer calories throughout the day. Help your body reduce chemical and mental stress by eating breakfast with adequate protein and fat.

Nutritional Data Reference:


Are you Suffering from Low Stomach Acid?

31 May

By Danielle Schwaderer, ND

Hypochlorhydria, or insufficient stomach acid production, is a very common condition in our fast-paced, stress-based society. Most individuals experience hypochlorhydria during some point throughout their life time, many of which may not even know they are suffering from the condition. Insufficient stomach acid can be the result of eating too quickly, drinking too many fluids with meals, being chronically stressed, eating in a stressful environment or on the road, eating away from the home, being vegan or vegetarian, taking medications for acid reflux/heartburn, or plain and simply eating the wrong thing at the wrong time.

Symptoms of Insufficient Stomach Acid:

Hypochlorhydria often manifests with signs and symptoms of poor digestion and assimilation which may include:

  • Heartburn, indigestion
  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal fullness or heaviness
  • Gas & Bloating
  • Abdominal pain
  • Chronic constipation
  • Undigested food in the stool
  • Bad breath
  • Muscle cramps
  • Food allergies/sensitivities
  • Dilated capillaries in the cheeks and nose
  • Weak, peeling, cracked fingernails
  • Acne
  • Anemia’s (B12 and/or iron deficiency)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Other vitamin and mineral deficiencies
  • Weight-gain
  • Chronic hives
  • Eczema

Diagnosing Hypochlorhydria:

The diagnosis of hypochlorhydria can be made by your medical or naturopathic doctor who has experience in gastrointestinal health. Diagnosis can be made by clinical judgement or laboratory testing. Additionally, your doctor may want to rule out other conditions that may contribute to hypochlorhydria including infection of H.pylori, thyroid disorders, adrenal insufficiency, and auto-immune disease.

Treatments for Hypochlorhydria:

Improving stomach acid levels can be achieved by a variety of ways including optimizing one’s diet & lifestyle and through stress management and supplementation. The following recommendations can dramatically improve stomach acid production and thus nutrient absorption and optimal health:

  • Cook your own meals – smelling food for a period of time before consumption initiates the first stage of digestion and stomach acid production.
  • Avoid meals of excessive fat or sugar.
  • Eat protein with each meal – protein stimulates HCl production.
  • Chew your food – 31 times each bite!
  • Eat in a relaxing environment – this switches our nervous system out of “fight or flight” and into “rest and digest.”
  • Limit fluid intake to 30 minutes pre or post meal – fluids can dilute stomach acid.
  • Consume 1 tbls Apple cider vinegar in 8 oz water, 15 minutes before large meals.
  • Consume bitters or bitter herbs such as gentian, burdock root, Oregon grape root. 20 drops can be consumed 10 – 15 minutes prior to larger meals.
  • Supplement HCl – consult your health professional for correct dosing.
  • Take a short walk after meals.

For more information regarding hypochlorhydria please contact Dr. Danielle Schwaderer at Symmetry Health today. (858) 270 – 2225.

Dr. Danielle Out of the Office in May

27 Apr

Just a reminder to all of Dr. Danielle’s naturopathic and b-shot patients, she will be out of the office May 14th – May 28th. Dr. Danielle will resume normal business hours at Symmetry Health on Tuesday May 29th. Should you anticipate needing a follow-up visit or any of her other services during this time period, please call Symmetry Health to schedule before May 14th, or upon her return.

Thank you for your understanding!

Medicinal Herbs 101: California Poppy

13 Mar

By Danielle Schwaderer, ND

Much more than our state flower, the California Poppy has far more uses extending beyond providing color to our hillsides and grasslands. California poppy, or Eschscholzia californica, has many medicinal uses that nourish the nervous system and pain pathways providing relief to those suffering from anxiety, restlessness, disturbed sleep, headaches, chronic pain and more. Additionally, California poppy has been recognized on a mental, emotional, spiritual level for enhancing vitality and warmth surrounding the heart and providing self-acceptance and self-awareness for those who are often attracted to the glitz & glamour of others.

As a Flower Essence:

When taken as a flower essence preparation, California poppy can be used for finding spirituality within one’s heart. The California poppy flower essence, according to Patricia Kaminski and Richard Katz, is used for balancing light and love and developing an inner center of knowing. California poppy stabilizes the golden light of the heart, encouraging more self-responsibility and quiet inner development. Often times, those who would benefit from taking this remedy are mesmerized by social glamour and fame and become easily immersed in the life of media stars, and many other fleeting fads or causes. Such souls have the wide-eyed expectation that the spiritual gold which they seek can be found somewhere outside themselves. When taking California poppy, the soul can find the true treasure it seeks, the radiant sun force of the awakened human heart.

As an Herbal Tincture or Tea:

California poppy has been used by native American’s for generations for enhancing relaxation and reducing pain. It has been described that this native plant has sedative chemical components similar to that of the Opium poppy, yet are very safe and non-addictive. In fact, it is described in literature that California poppy is safe for most individuals including children. California poppy can be purchased in liquid extract (tincture) form or dried and used as medicinal tea. It combines beautifully with other herbs including skullcap, passion flower, and wild oat.

Reported Medicinal Uses:

  • Anxiety or restlessness
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Acute or chronic pain
  • Headache
  • Children experiencing tooth pain or bed-wetting induced by anxiety or nervousness.

Pharmacologic Research:

Additional References:

– Flower Essence Repertory by Patricia Kaminiski & Richard Katz.

– A Clinical Guide to Blending Liquid Herbs by Kerry Bone

Yet Another Reason to Go Organic and non-GMO

3 Mar
By Danielle Schwaderer, ND

A recent study published by researchers at Université de Caen Basse-Normandie in France has concluded that very small doses of glyphosate, used in herbicides and genetically modified foods have been linked to birth defects, hormonal dysfunction, reduced testosterone levels, infertility, and even testicular cell death. Extremely small amounts of glyphosate and Roundup Bioforce (1 part per million) were reported to reduce testosterone levels in rats by 35% and increase the expression of aromatase, the enzyme that allows for the conversion of testosterone to estrogen. This means that men that consume conventional or genetically modified produce, or drink un-filtered water contaminated with herbicide residues can have lower levels of testosterone and higher levels of estrogen, a hormonal profile that does not appeal to many men. Higher levels of exposure to Roundup Bioforce were shown to cause testicular cell death, a situation that can lead to infertility and hormonal imbalance.

Roundup and Monsanto

Monsanto, makers of Roundup, have a unique position in the American food supply. Over the years, this corporate giant has found a way to genetically modify seeds and crops to require Roundup to be sprayed in order for the seed to germinate and grow into fruits and vegetables. Not only are herbicides being used to save crops from invasive plant species, but they now must be used to grow a majority of our nations crops in the first place. This ability to genetically engineer our food supply and control our seed bank has allowed Monsanto to become a corporate giant whom is poisoning our nation with their chemicals in which have been linked to birth defects, hormone dysfunction and many hormone related cancers.

Reasons to Buy Organic and Non-GMO
  • Prevent hormone imbalance and estrogen dominance in yourself and farmers who grow crops
  • Prevent birth defects
  • Prevent infertility
  • Avoid allergies to GM products
  • Save our seed bank and limit Monsanto’s control
Most Commonly Genetically Modified Products to Avoid:

Take extra caution when purchasing these products, look for Non-GMO labels:

  • Corn (produce and high fructose corn syrup)
  • Soy (soybeans, soybean oil, lecithin)
  • Canola
  • Mayonnaise (soybean oil)
  • Rice (whole grain and rice protein powder)
  • Hawaiian papaya
  • Cottonseed
  • Beet sugar
  • Sugar cane
How Many of US Crops are Genetically Modified?

The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), a branch of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that in 2011, corn, cotton and soybean were the most genetically engineered crops grown in the US. In 2011, the USDA reported these percentages of genetically engineered crops grown in the US:

  • Corn – 88% GMO
  • Cotton- 90% GMO
  • Soybean – 94% GMO
Grow Your Own or Shop Right:

Protect yourself, your family, the natural environment and the farmers of our country by purchasing locally grown, organic and non-GMO produce and products. Read all labels for non-GMO products, especially for corn, soy and cottonseed oil derivatives. Whenever possible, grow your own chemical-free garden using organic or heirloom seeds. Shop local farmers markets and ask all vendors if they are herbicide & pesticide free (some local farmers do not have organic certification because of costs associated with the process).


Institute of Science in Society: ISIS Report 2/27/12

USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service – 2011 Report

Hula Hooping for Fitness

25 Jan

Hula hooping may have never been so cool! The Farmer’s Almanac has just released an article that describes the benefits of hula hooping for exercise. Not only can hula hooping serve as a form of exercise but it can also help enhance rythm and 2nd chakra imbalances. Read below to find out more about hula hooping!


by Judy Kneiszel on FarmersAlmanac.com

The hula hoop became a craze in the late 1950s when the Wham-O company successfully marketed a plastic version as a toy. It is estimated that over 100 million hoops were sold in 1958-59, securing the hoop’s eventual induction in the National Toy Hall of Fame in Rochester, New York.

Today, the hula hoop is making a comeback, but not necessarily as a kids’ toy. It has now emerged as a fitness tool.

Hooping is a great cardio workout that can burn between 400 and 600 calories in an hour, while also improving core strength and toning the abdominal muscles, arms, thighs, and butt. It’s high energy, but low impact, which means it doesn’t put stress on the knees. Plus, it’s fun!

For maximum benefit, weighted hula hoops are often used for working out. Weighted hoops are bigger and heavier than traditional hula hoops. If you try a weighted hula hoop, be sure to select one that is the right size for you. The hoop should reach somewhere between your waist and chest when it is resting vertically on the ground.

The weight of the hoop is personal preference. A smaller, lighter hoop takes more energy to keep going. A bigger, heavier hoop is easier to keep going, which means you can probably do it for a longer period of time. Experiment with different hoops to see which kind and size you prefer. Weighted hula hoops are available from sporting goods stores and online retailers. Some fitness clubs have hoops available for members to use.

Once you are proficient in spinning the hoop around your hips in one direction, challenge yourself by reversing it. You’ll be amazed at how it’s easier one way than the other. And you can also shake your workout up a bit and by spinning it around your arms (one at a time). Just be sure you’ve got plenty of room around you so your hoop doesn’t hit anything or anyone. Then let go and have fun!

No Oat “Oatmeal” Recipe

24 Jan

For all of you Paleo lovers out there, here is a great grain-free, gluten-free ”oatmeal” recipe!

Makes breakfast for two. Approximate cooking time: 15 minutes.


1/4 cup walnuts                          1 Tbs almond butter                  1/4 cup pecans

1 banana, mashed                       2 Tbs ground flax seed             3 eggs

1/2-1 tsp ground cinnamon      2 tsp pumpkin seeds

1 handful of fresh berries (optional)

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (add more if desired)


1) Add walnuts, pecans, flax seed, and spices to a food processor and pulse mixture to a course grain (make sure to stop before it is ground into a powder). Set aside.

2) Whisk together eggs and almond milk until the consistency thickens and becomes a loose custard.

3) Thoroughly blend the mashed banana and almond butter together and add it to the custard, mixing well.

4) Stir in the course nut mixture.

5) In a medium saucepan, warm the mixture on the stove until the “no-oatmeal” reaches the desired consistency; this should only take a few minutes. Stir frequently.

6) Sprinkle pumpkin seeds and berries on top. Add more almond milk if desired.

Vitamins Shown to Help an Aging Brain

4 Jan

A fellow Naturopathic doctor and NCNM alum has recently received accolades by the New York Times and Huffington Post for a research study published in the January 2012 issue of Neurology. Dr. Gene Bowman and his research team at Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU) studied the effects certain vitamins, minerals, and nutrients had on 100+ elderly individuals. Using blood levels, brain imaging, and cognitive testing Dr. Bowman and colleagues determined that high blood levels of B vitamins (B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid), and vitamins C, D, & E were associated with improved cognitive function and brain volume.  Additionally, high blood levels of omega-3’s were linked to higher scores on cognitive tests, but offered no correlation to brain volume.

Trans Fatty Acids and the Brain:

Dr. Bowman and colleagues, had the opportunity to study the effects trans fatty acids have on brain function and cognitive decline. As expected, higher blood levels of trans fats, were significantly associated with impaired mental ability and smaller brain volume.

How This Effects You:

Eating a diet full of fruits, veggies, wild fish, grass-fed beef, and other nutrient dense foods may slow the effects of age related cognitive decline and may prevent the progression of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in susceptible individuals. Aiming for 10 servings of veggies daily, or filling half of your plate with veggies at each meal may be enough to keep your brain healthy and active for a life time!

Way to go Dr. Bowman and OHSU for making it to the national platform! Fellow ND’s and NCNM alum appreciate your hard work.


Bowman GL, Silbert LS, Howieson D, Dodge HH, Traber MG, Frei B, Kaye JA, Shannon J, Quinn JF. Nutrient Biomarker Patterns, Cognitive Function and MRI Measures of Brain Aging. Neurology 2012;78:1-1. Read on pubmed

Huffington Post Article: www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/31/trans-fats-brain-damage_n_1173487.html

New York Times Article: www.nytimes.com/2012/01/03/health/research/vitamins-b-c-d-and-e-and-omega-3-strengthen-older-brains.html

Vitamin Boost Program LA Sprouts

13 Dec

B-12 shots in LA Weds 12/14/11


Sprouts Torrance: 11:30am- 1:30pm

Sprouts Culver City: 3pm – 5pm

Walk-ins welcome! B vitamin shots start at $20.