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521 North Argonne Road
Spokane Valley, WA, 99212
United States

509-919-1385

Naturopathic Medicine in Spokane Valley, WA specializing in discovering the root cause of your chronic symptoms.  We utilize environmental medicine protocols and holistic treatments to treat chronic symptoms and autoimmune diseases.  

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Dr. Julie George aims to provide you with knowledge to take control of your life.  Our blog provides information for you to become informed, aware, and able to make confident decisions.  

 

Filtering by Category: Environmental Medicine

Mold in Spokane Area

DrJulie George

 

Do you know someone that was highly productive maybe participated in Bloomsday or the PTG, and now barely has any energy?  Or perhaps you know someone that was a high achiever always making their goals and making life look easy, yet now they are having difficulty processing what to do next.  They could be fighting daily headaches or is it nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.  We probably all know of someone like this if it isn't us.  Some mold patients look great, and you wouldn't think they were even sick.  

Mold Illness is a real health problem.  Mold produces and releases tiny spores which are small enough to be in our air, water, and even insect-borne.  Mycotoxins are also produced from mold.  Both spores and mycotoxins can cause health problems.  One-quarter of the population is susceptible to chronic mold illness due to their HLA gene status.  HLA are antigens that are found on the surface of cells.  Antigens help the immune system label foreign invaders, however, people with a defect in the HLA gene will have difficulty clearing foreign invaders from the body.  When the body is under constant attack from foreign invaders the immune system can not handle it, thus the label Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome.  Mold illness is hard to distinguish from other autoimmune diseases and often has similar symptoms as chronic Lyme's Disease.  People with RA, Psoriasis, Lupus, Hashimotos, IBD, and Graves Disease often are triggered by mycotoxins.

COMMON SYMPTOMS OF MOLD ILLNESS

  • HEADACHES

  • DISTURBED SLEEP

  • FOOD SENSITIVITIES

  • ALLERGIES

  • IBS

  • DISRUPTED VITAMIN D METABOLISM

  • INCREASE VIRAL ACTIVITY

  • HORMONE DISRUPTION

  • FATIGUE

  • LOW LIBIDO

  • BRAIN FOG

  • DECREASED IMMUNE SYSTEM

  • NAUSEA/VOMITING

  • DIARRHEA

SIMILAR SYMPTOMS OF MOLD ILLNESS AND CAN BE MISDIAGNOSED

  • FIBROMYALGIA

  • CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME

  • MULITPLE SCLEROSIS

  • DEPRESSION

  • STRESS

  • ALLERGIES

  • IBS

  • ADD

TESTING FOR MYCOTOXINS IN SPOKANE VALLEY

At Rivercreek Wellness, Dr. Julie George works with the leading laboratories in the nation.  We recommend testing for molds and mycotoxins as well as checking other blood markers.  Mycotoxins and mold are often problems that need to be addressed with people living with chronic illness.

SPOKANE AREA HAS MOLD

When I moved to Spokane I inquired about mold with inspectors, real estate agents as well as physicians.  Do you know what the majority of them said?  "Mold, you don't need to worry about that on this side of the state."  I was dumbfounded by that response.  Mold is all around us.  We have water pipes in our homes, it rains and  snows, right?  According to OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 1/4 of US buildings are water damaged.  Just because your home or office hasn't been flooded, hit by a hurricane, or had pipes burst, doesn't mean you are free of mold.  A lot of the times the mold is not on the surface, therefore not visible to our eyes.  

COMMON REASONS OF MOLD GROWTH

  • REMEDIATION DID INCORRECTLY

  • POOR VENTILATION & HVAC SYSTEM

  • FLAT ROOFS

  • FAKE STUCCO

  • CRAWL SPACES

  • BASEMENTS- INCLUDING FINISHED 

  • WATER LEAKS

  • SEWAGE BACKING UP

INSPECTION OF MOLD

Your average insurance mold inspector is not enough.  It is important that you work with a professional that runs the correct mold and mycotoxin testing.  Even I have hired the wrong local companies for testing. We are developing relationships with a few trusted companies that offer great testing and advice.  

 

This content is not intended to diagnose or treat your health conditions.  If you have any questions regarding your symptoms or health please contact your primary care physician.  

Protect Your Heart from Mercury

DrJulie George

heartdiseaseandmercury.png

Have you heard that February is American Heart Month? Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide.  During the month of February, you will hear a lot about basic prevention tips and patient testimonials.  However, one of the most ignored links to heart disease is heavy metal exposures, specifically mercury.  Mercury toxicity is highly correlated with high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, heart attacks, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases (1).  Conventional medicine usually will only test for metals if there is an acute poisoning.  

What is Mercury and Where Does It Come From?

You probably first heard of mercury in chemistry class when memorizing the periodic table.  There are three types of mercury: elemental, inorganic and methylmercury (organic).  Dental amalgams are the silver filling and the most common source of inorganic mercury toxicity.  The methylmercury form is found in sea life, vaccines, pharmaceuticals, coal plants, etc.  Our body can convert methylmercury to inorganic mercury and store it in our body (1).  Mercury is lipophilic meaning it likes to concentrate in fatty tissues.  Mercury can affect your organs especially your brain and heart.  The average 154-pound person has a told body burden of 13mg of mercury (2).

Mercury Sources:

  • Dental Amalgams

  • Seafood

  • Freshwater Fish

  • Water

  • Pharmaceuticals

  • Mercury-Containing Vaccines -Thimerosal

  • Natural Occurring

  • Industries

  • Coal Plants

  • Cosmetics

  • Crematories

Eating Seafood Increases Risk of Heart Disease

Numerous studies have linked mercury with heart disease.  A study in Finland linked cardiovascular disease and cardiac death with consumption of seafood containing mercury.  The study accounted for many variables and analyzed hair mercury levels in men.  The study found that men who consumed daily fish greater than or equal to 30g was associated with a 2.1 fold increase of having an acute heart attack and 2.4 fold increase in death related to heart disease when compared to those that ate less fish (2).

The American Heart Association published an article this month still promoting people to eat fish to keep the heart healthy.  They recommended eating fish for eating better, cholesterol control, and for weight loss (3).  I believe that eating fish on a regular basis could potentially cause a lot of harm within the body.  Each time we are exposed to heavy metals, they have the ability to lodge and store in our body.  Mercury increases our oxidative stress within the body. Glutathione is depleted with toxin exposures.  Glutathione is the number one antioxidant within the body that is required to combat oxidative stress.  Heavy metals and toxins damage our mitochondria which is our cells power house for generating energy.  This can lead to premature cell death.  Mercury has been shown to increase lipid peroxidation (1).  

Highest Level of Mercury in Fish!  

  • Swordfish

  • Albacore Tuna

  • Tile Fish

  • Shark

  • King Mackerel

  • The larger the fish the more mercury

What is your total body burden of mercury?

We feel that it is important to your overall health to know your total body burden of heavy metals for prevention.  At Rivercreek Wellness we have the ability to test for heavy metals.  We use laboratories that specialize in testing like Doctors Data and/or Genova Diagnostics.  It involves two collections of urine, one before chelator and one post chelator.  We prefer to prescribe an oral chelator for testing.  

Removing mercury?

Removing possible sources is the first step.  We usually recommend individualized chelation protocols for our patients.  Reducing heavy metals takes time and does not usually occur with one treatment or round of chelation.  

Disclaimer:  This is article is not intended to diagnose or treat your medical condition.  If you have any medical concerns please seek care from your physician.  

 

References

1. Houston MC (2014) The Role of Mercury in Cardiovascular Disease. J Cardiovasc Dis Diagn 2: 170. doi:10.4172/2329-9517.1000170

2. Salonen JT, Seppänen K, Nyyssönen K, Korpela H, Kauhanen J, et al. (1995) Intake of mercury from  sh, lipid peroxidation, and the risk of myocardial infarction and coronary, cardiovascular, and any death in eastern Finnish men. Circulation 91: 645-655.

3. American Heart Association News.  (2018) 7 proven ways to keep your heart healthy.  news.heart.org.  

 

My Dad Has Dementia

DrJulie George

Dementia.png

Over the holidays I went to spend some time with my family back in Texas.  Each time I go back it seems as if not much changes.  There may be a few additions to the family, but overall it feels the same time and time again.  This trip was a little different...  See my dad recently has been diagnosed with a form of dementia.  In additon, my brothers and I found out that he hasn't been taking his medication properly.  As a physician, this is frustrating to me. 

After the hustle and bustle of the holiday get togethers, I went to my dad's primary care physician to request his medical records and sign forms to allow me to speak with him.  The doctor was at the window on my arrival so he took us back to his office.  I wanted to ask a few questions about his medications.  As a naturopathic physician, I was puzzled to why he is not being monitored more closely and why he hadn't been referred to specialists for his dementia and blood sugar.  The doctor was very apathetic to my concerns.  He actually told me that my dad's condition was not a serious medical condition, yet a family problem.  This doctor didn't think a specialist was needed but stated, "If that is what you want, then I guess you can take him."  He went on to tell me that my dad has dementia and it is common and there isn't much you can do for it, except take his medication.  At this moment I realized what YOU may be feeling when YOU go and see your primary care physician.  I was so frustrated with my dad's doctor.  Besides this doctor lacking care and compassion, he wasn't even giving future options for care.  

If you live in or near a city that offers licensed naturopathic medicine you are BLESSED.  My dad lives in a semi-rural area of Texas where sick care is healthcare.  Naturopathic medicine isn't even licensed there.  Finding good quality care and healthy foods is dismal.  My dad does not want to progress any more than he already has so he has agreed to come for an extended stay in Spokane, WA with me.  To be honest, I am a little worried to break his social routine.  However, I am confident that eating a diet that I prescribe and cook for him will help control his blood sugar and cut the inflammation.  In addition to dietary changes, I will be hitting him hard with environmental medicine protocols.  I believe that dementia is a cumulative effect from our genes, lifestyle, and environment.  Therefore, addressing the whole person is key to slowing down progression and/or reversing symptoms.  

  • Cognitive Nutritional and Herbal Supplements

  • Detoxification Pathways

  • IV Nutrients

  • HBOT Therapy

I love my dad more than he will ever know.  It hurts so much to know the man that influenced my life is so confused.  My dad is aging as we all are, but restoring HIS quality of life and YOURS is why I do what I do.

 

This content is not intended to diagnose or treat your health conditions.  If you have any questions regarding your symptoms or health please contact your primary care physician.