Tuesday, September 19, 2017

5 Tips For Developing A Healthy Autumn Routine

Annex Naturopathic

Healthy Autumn Routine Tips | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctors

Hello, and Happy September!

As a naturopathic doctor in Toronto, seasonal shifts are factors that I take into account when helping patients develop healthy routines.

Theses seasonal shifts can't be ignored as they have a real effect on the body and the health of each individual.

As we say goodbye to summer, it’s time to welcome the structure and seasonal shifts September brings.

At this time of year it can be difficult to:

1. Sleep

Prioritize restful sleep.

That means going to bed a little earlier, and saying no to that last episode on Netflix.

Waking up refreshed sets the stage for a great day.

Check out our top 5 tips for improving sleep quality to help you make the most of your time in bed.

2. Hydrate

Start off your day with a BIG glass of water. Aim for 2 litres throughout the day.

Not a big fan of water? Try putting lemon or cucumber slices in it for a little bit of flavour.

Remember - coffee and alcoholic beverages are dehydrating. Switch out that second cup of coffee for a big glass of water!

3. Meal Prep

Planning your meals ahead of time is definitely easier in theory than practice.

A good start to making is easy to meal plan for the week is thinking of your 3 favourite “go-to” meals, and making sure you have all the ingredients on hand.

Freeze leftovers in singles servings to be warmed up on days when you don’t have time to cook.

Exercise for a Healthy Autumn | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Toronto Naturopathic Doctors

4. Exercise

Start with short and sweet when it comes to exercise.

A half hour at the gym or walking briskly is enough when you’re getting back into the groove.

Schedule in your exercise at the beginning of the week and have your gym clothes ready the night before.

5. Set healthy boundaries with technology

Turn that gosh-darn phone off!Smartphones are very stimulating to the brain and can dysregulate the body’s stress response.

Give your brain a break from your phone daily.

You’ll have more time to tackle the other 4 items on this list!

Seek out professional help

For any reason you need some help, come see one of the Naturopathic Doctor’s at Annex Naturopathic Clinic - they will help you figure out a gameplan together!

If you’re curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,


Annex Naturopathic Clinic
572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1
-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62


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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Exploring the Menstrual Cycle: Common Concerns & How Birth Control Methods Work

Annex Naturopathic

Menstrual Cycle Facts | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Womens Health

Women often have many concerns surrounding their menstrual cycle.

Many women seek interventions and guidance to avoid pregnancy.

Other women may need support conceiving.

Some women struggle with painful, long periods, while other women go months to years without a period at all.

Needless to say, there are many physiological, anatomical and biochemical factors that contribute to a healthy menstrual cycle.

Too add to the complexity, there is variability in what is considered “normal” amongst women’s menstrual cycles.

Therefore, an individualized approach to care is essential in determining what factors may be problematic- and- what type of support will create the conditions for optimal women’s health.

The naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic excel in helping women understand and regulate their cycles naturally.

This is especially helpful given that with conventional medicine, options may be limited to synthetic hormonal contraceptives.

The birth control pill is an effective form of contraception, however, it may not always be in line with patient preference or address the root cause of a women’s menstrual concerns.

Common menstrual cycle concerns and why they may be happening

  • Heavy period flow which may be caused by a relative excess in estrogen.
  • A woman does not get her period. Lack of menstrual cycles can be the result of various mechanisms.
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome. Periods are infrequent, often spaced out longer than one month apart. A combination of factors which includes elevated testosterone and high blood sugar and high insulin which reduces ovulation (egg release) and frequency of menstruation.
  • Dysmenorrhea: painful periods which may be caused by a general inflamed state and a relative excess of estrogen.

Differentiating contraceptive methods

  • The Oral Contraceptive Pill. Most are estrogen and progestin containing. Ovulation is inhibited because of the synthetic hormones. The pill also allows for thicker cervical mucus which makes the the uterus impenetrable to sperm. The placebo pills (at the end of the pill pack) cause uterine lining to shed due to drop in hormones in the body.
  • Transdermal Patch: Same mechanism as pill. The patch is worn for 3 weeks and taken off for one week.
  • Nuva Ring. Same mechanism as the oral contraceptive pill. The ring is put in for 3 weeks, removed for one week.
  • Mirena IUS/ Jaydess IUD (Intaruterine Device/System). This device sits in the uterus, and a low continuous dose of progestin is secreted. Ovulation may or may not occur. The progestin thickens the cervical mucus (which makes the uterus impenetrable to sperm), and the presence of the IUD makes the uterus inhospitable to fertilization and implantation.
  • Copper IUD. There are no hormones secreted by this IUD. It works by making the uterus inhospitable to fertilization and implantation.
  • Barrier methods. Prevent entry or sperm.
  • Fertility awareness. This involves consciously tracking the timing of the menstrual cycle combined with temperature and cervical mucous monitoring.

Birth Control Concerns | Annex Naturopathic Clinic | Womens Health

Factors that affect your cycle and contraceptive methods

  • When cortisol, the stress hormone is high, the hypothalamus in the brain sends signals to decrease sex hormone production.
  • Gastrointestinal disturbances. Estrogen is recycled back into circulation in the gut by healthy gut bacteria. When there is a significant change in gut flora- which can happen because of antibiotic use, or gastrointestinal infection- the hormone balance can shift and the menstrual cycle may to.

REMEMBER: The best contraceptive method

  • Is the one you use consistently.
  • Encourages enjoyable sex and reduces stress.
  • Resonates with you and has minimal side affects.

For any reason you have concerns regarding your menstrual cycle, birth control methods or fertility, come see one of the NDs at our clinic.

If you’re curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,


Annex Naturopathic Clinic
572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1
-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62


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Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Having Irregular Periods? You May Have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Annex Naturopathic

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome | Annex Naturopathic Clinic Toronto Naturopath

As one of the top naturopathic clinic in Toronto, we have a special focus in treating women's health issues.

We often discover that a significant amount of women today find themselves having irregular periods.

The cause can be for many reasons.

Although today we are going to discuss one important cause that women should be aware of - Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

What is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)?

PCOS is a “syndrome” which is different than a disease. A disease is a pathological process that is well defined by what is causing it and the symptoms it causes.

On the other hand, a “syndrome” is a collection of symptoms we see together that are not necessarily caused by the same problem.

PCOS has symptoms relating to hormonal imbalances and problems with metabolism (how our body uses it’s fuel).

PCOS is very common in women of child bearing years. As many as 1 in 10 women fit the criteria for diagnosis.

Women with PCOS will have a varying degree of symptoms.

Symptoms of PCOS

1. Irregular periods. Few or no menstrual periods over a the span of a year.

2. Changes in hair growth. Excess hair on the face, chest, back, stomach. Thinning head hair.

3. Breakouts that become inflamed.

4. Women who have PCOS may have difficulty getting pregnant.

5. Weight gain. Difficulty achieving ideal weight, even with diet and exercise.

Why does PCOS happen?

These are a few of the factors that influence the development of PCOS.

1. There is several genes associated with PCOS. If a pregnant mother had PCOS, her daughters have a significantly higher risk of developing PCOS.

2. Insulin resistance and obesity. When blood sugar is high, insulin (the hormone responsible for helping the body use and store sugar) doesn’t work well.

The ovaries are very sensitive to insulin resistance and in response they don’t produce the appropriate amount of hormones necessary for ovulation and the body has too much testosterone circulating.

3. Exposure to “Endocrine-disrupting” chemicals. Chemicals like BPA found in plastics alter the activity of sex hormones.

BPA is know to interact with estrogen receptors which will decrease the bodies ability to ovulate.

Irregular periods and PCOS | Annex Naturopathic Clinic Toronto Naturopath

Treatment of PCOS

Conventional Approaches include regulating the cycle through use of oral contraceptives, regulating blood sugar with medications like metformin and fertility treatment if the individual is having difficulty conceiving.

How Annex Naturopathic Clinic approach PCOS

Naturopathic doctors look at addressing the root causes of PCOS and treatment is revolved around naturally restoring hormonal balance through:

  1. Dietary and exercise recommendations that reduce insulin sensitivity and exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals.
  2. Nutritional supplementation that encourages insulin sensitivity and hormone balance.
  3. Herbal medicine that gently and effectively balances hormones and metabolism.
  4. Bioindentical hormones therapy if appropriate.

If you’re concerned with hormonal irregularities, come see us at Annex Naturopathic Clinic for a comprehensive assessment and treatment plan to help your body get back in balance.

If you’re curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.

Yours in Health,


Annex Naturopathic Clinic
572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1
-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62


To find more information on health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: naturopath dr