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Category Archives: Additional Videos

Probiotics and the Brain-Multiple sclerosis

By Dr. Don Davis, D.C., DACNB - Neurology
Functional Nutrition.

Everyone knows that the brain is a valuable organ. Well, for that matter, most of our organs are valuable. It’s just that the brain is one of those where even subtle changes in the blood that feeds the brain can bring on big changes in behavior, that everyone can notice. You can’t say that of most of our other organs.

A brand new study in the journal Neurology looked into some of these small changes, specifically with the immune system within. The study looked at the disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), an autoimmune disease that attacks the white matter (nerve extensions) of the brain. It also looked at probiotics as a possible treatment for the condition.

The logic works like this: In MS, the white matter of the central nervous system is damaged by an overactive and over-sensitive immune system. Since we know that intestinal bacteria can help regulate the immune system, it was thought that probiotics might be able to decrease the immune system’s attack on the white matter and decrease the effects and progression of MS.

They used a probiotic of bacteria common in yogurt containing Bifidobactor, Lactobacillis and Streptococcus bacteria. These are microbes that are known to increase IL-10, a molecule that increases Regulatory T cells that will slow the immune system down.

Up to this point, this particular blend of probiotic has been helpful in controlling diabetes, colitis, and IBS, so it would be reasonable that it could also be affective in an autoimmune nerve condition. The results were interesting. First of all, the markers that studied that showed general inflammation decreased significantly and also lead to a decrease specific neurological markers related to MS.

This more than just interesting. It is important. While most of us don’t have MS, we are all dealing with some level of inflammation. Some us, especially those that are eating the Standard American Diet, living with high levels of stress, decreased sleep, and little exercise are “going down”. This study shows that increasing the level of good bacteria can decrease the inflammation that is responsible for the majority of degenerative diseases and MS in particular.

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Is Type 1 Diabetes Caused by the Gut?

By Dr. Don Davis


Many of our diseases are linked other to conditions and illnesses.  For instance, rheumatoid arthritis is common with heart disease, and cancer is common in obesity.  The connections between these diseases are related to many factors like, genetics and toxic exposure but that’s not the only reason that a person with one disease will likely get another.


We have known for quite a while that the intestines and the bacteria that live there have an effect on obesity, mood disorders, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease and even effect behavior.  Now I’ll have to add another to the list – Type 1 Diabetes.


Type 1 Diabetes (not Type 2) is an autoimmune condition that is caused by your body mistakenly attacking your pancreas cells that make insulin.  Like other autoimmune diseases, the immune system malfunctions, becomes hyper-aggressive and launches an attack on your own body.  This is similar to other less serious immune troubles like food allergies, and hay fever that are caused by the immune system’s over-zealous response to pollen or food. - There is research that connects the microbiome of children to future development of allergy as well.


In a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, the authors found that people with type 1 diabetes had “an inflammatory signature and microbiome” that differed from people that don’t have diabetes”.  In a way, this shouldn’t be surprising, because diabetics commonly have intestinal problems.


Usually, this kind of study is done by analyzing stool samples, but in this study, they used endoscopy to directly observe the upper part of the small intestine.  During observation, biopsies were provided to assess the health of the intestinal wall along with samples of the gut bacteria.


It turned out that people with Type 1 diabetes showed substantially more signs of inflammation in the gut wall than in normal people or even individuals that had celiac disease – the life-threatening disorder caused by gluten consumption.


The researchers were able to link the inflammation to 10 different genes.  If that wasn’t enough, the study showed that in diabetics, the bacterial flora of the gut was clearly different from the other two groups.


In an earlier study, researchers divided two groups of mice, one with normal living conditions and the other that was raised germ free with no bacteria in their intestines.  Interestingly, the germ-free mice developed diabetes and the normal raised mice did not.


These two studies clearly show that the bacteria of the gut have a direct effect on the development of diabetes.  We don’t know yet exactly which bacteria are most important in the development of Type 1 diabetes but this will come in future studies.


The “Perfect Storm” of gut inflammation.


There are many factors that cause diabetes and according to this research, the 4 most important factors are:


  • Unbalanced bacteria in the gut
  • A “leaky” intestinal inner layer from inflammation
  • An altered immune response
  • The degree of genetic susceptibility


When all of these factors are present, a “perfect storm” may arise resulting in the development of diabetes and the defective tolerance for our own tissues.  The scary thing here is that this is th

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Middle-of-the-night Insomnia

  • When waking up means staying up!


By Dr. Don Davis


You’ve been there. Asleep in your bed, awash in dreamland, when you turn over or get up to pee, lie back down and find that you are awake, really awake. At first you just lie there assuming that your body will take over and send you back to your sacred sleep. After all, you are tired, worn out and need some relief. But it doesn’t happen. You begin to wonder if you should apply for that open job at work, or you find yourself regretting a response you gave to a friend asking you for a loan, or a million other things.

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The Ten Best Fermented Foods

By Dr. Don Davis

There are so many ways to mess up your stomach and guts. Unfortunately, with all the Options-Of-Evil, like ice cream, French fries and breakfast cereal close within our grasp, it’s no wonder that our insides are having a rough time. But I’m here to say that there are also great options and the category I’d like to talk about here is Fermented Foods.


I’m sure you know a few of these like cheese and yogurt but it would do well to expand your horizons, branch out, and try some of the lesser known fermented alternatives.

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Hand Sanitizers: Do you need them?

By Doc Don Davis            .................. It feels good to be clean, but nothing beats getting dirty. In a way, that’s seems to be the American dilemma, we try as best we can to have it both ways. But the American media and especially advertising has suggested that the only option is to clean everything in sight, and several places we can’t see. I’ve been a bystander during this social change, opting to use soap and water, but the tide changed when I was working out and got a nasty look from a woman who made a big display of wiping down my hamstring machine after I was done. The situation was so awkward that I felt compelled to travel over to the dispenser and get the “court ordered” hand wipe, to allay my guilt. But then I had second thoughts. Thoughts solidly based on recent…

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Smart Phones and Text Neck

By Doc Don Davis            ..................   Please take a moment and look at the people on the street.  The majority have their heads down and eyes locked on a smart phone.  Oblivious to the outside world, elbows flexed, neck bent, friends ignored -- an ergonomic/postural disaster that’s putting the strangle hold on spines and nervous systems across the planet. The numbers are truly staggering. With 7.3 billion cell phones (more than human beings) in the world, and 7 trillion text messages sent in 2011 alone, I think it’s safe to say, “Houston, we’ve got a problem”.     Many of us are aware that texting can cause injuries such as “Texting Thumb” or the 1,200+ people that wound up in emergency rooms last year from distractedly walking into signposts while texting. But a more insidious, and more pervasive, texting-related injury is “Text-Neck”--- caused by the…

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