March 2007 Newsletter
Gene Expression: Showing Your Best Side
People are often think of our genes as a "behind the scenes" part of us. We are who we are because of the genes we were born with. After that, our genes are thought of as being useful mainly for reproduction. However, our genes are so much more.
Few people realize that our genes are the active machinery of our biochemistry on an every day and moment to moment basis. Our genes store the information necessary for the manufacturing of our proteins, and our bodies use this information to make proteins constantly. These proteins serve many functions, from providing the structure of our bodies to controlling the essential processes of energy production, cellular and organ function. Therefore, our genes are constantly in use, just as the central processor in a computer is constantly being used to run the various programs and applications that are installed.
Another misconception is that our genes are "fixed" and that their end result or expression cannot be changed. This may be true for the few traits that are controlled by only a single gene. Most of our physical and biochemical characteristics are controlled not by a single gene, however, but by many genes. Our height, our weight, our metabolism, our tendencies and most illnesses, as well as aging are not controlled by a single gene, but by multiple genes in concert with our environment. Many of these genes are also affected by nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that are involved in the chemical reactions within our cells. There is, therefore, a tremendous opportunity to affect the expression of our genes as well as our traits, tendencies and our health in general by improving both our physical environment and our cellular (nutrient) environment.
Let me give you an example. If someone is born with a genetic tendency for heart disease and they smoke, don't exercise, eat poorly, gain weight, are under stress and have nutrient deficiencies, then they are likely to have heart disease develop at an early age, probably in their forties. If the same person with the same genetic tendency, however, were to avoid smoking, exercise regularly, eat right, maintain their weight, reduce stress, and maintain the proper intake of nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants, they are likely to prevent heart disease from developing perhaps until after they are 100!
The point is that although our genes are fixed, the expression or manifestation of our genes is dependent upon cellular biochemical processes that can be greatly affected by our diet, environment and lifestyle. We can change our genes, in effect, or at least how they affect our health. By examining and correcting key imbalances we can improve the outcome of our genes and truly prevent many of the illnesses that were previously felt to be inevitable.
Assessing UV damage and skin health with computerized digital imaging software
The camera is effective at highlighting the contrasts between the color of skin and the spots both on the surface and subsurface of your skin. Once individuals see the damage, particularly subsurface damage that isn’t visible in the mirror, they are often more motivated to take care of their skin and protect it from the sun. What’s more, after receiving a procedure to correct sun damage, we can track the effectiveness and success of a treatment regimen with a before and after photo feature to show the level of improvement.
Golf Tip For Men: Check Your Equipment!
About 40% of men between the ages of 40 and 60 will experience some symptoms of male menopause (also called andropause) including lethargy, depression, increased irritability, mood swings, insomnia, decreased libido, loss of lean body mass and bone mass, and impotence. Declining testosterone levels generally are the culprit; by age 80, most male hormone levels decrease to prepuberty levels. This hormone deficiency may be aggravated by excessive alcohol consumption, obesity, smoking, hypertension, medications, poor diet, lack of exercise, and psychological problems. If you believe you may be experiencing male menopause, or would like more information, I would be happy to help you become balanced.
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