Why Some Vegetarians or Vegans Thrive and Others Fail

I’ve started seeing more and more people coming in for injectables and intravenous drips like Vitamin B12, B Complex, high dose Vitamin C, glutathione, Magnesium, amino acids and D amongst others. However, new Vitamin B12 patients far outnumber the rest and many of them are vegetarians or vegans. Many of these patients have also chosen to eat this way later in life ie teens or later. There is a great deal of awareness within this community and they choose to eat this way, accepting that they need to do more to counter the potential nutritional shortfalls.

Surprisingly, I don’t see many who are born into vegetarian families (due to religion or culture) where they have eaten this way for generations. This suggests that they either are relatively unaware (I somehow don’t think that this is the issue), or that they are more ‘adapted’ to this way of eating. My believe is that epigenetics is at play here.

 

Coming from a culture where I’m familiar with vegetarianism for religion purposes, and knowing what I do now about some problems that vegetarianism brings about; this article that I’m about to share has always been a question in my mind and something that I’ve been meaning to explore. It’s so well written and researched that I don’t need to add much to it besides introducing you to the writer of that blog post and giving you my 2 cents about it.

 

The article discusses 4 points and is written by Denise Minger. Denise’s blog site https://rawfoodsos.com/  went viral after she published her findings regarding the China Study, which is possibly the most famous pro-vegan study out there. Her quest started when her usually perfect teeth was found to be full of cavities despite doing everything by the book to stay ‘healthy’. Being a naturally curious sort, she delved into the China Study and actually took the trouble to analyse the data. There she found many discrepancies which sadly enough does happen in the scientific world where data is ‘tweaked’ to fit in with the original hypothesis. Her work is relevant and needs to be read.

 

My personal opinion:

  • Veganism does not suit everyone

  • If this is how you choose to eat, do take extra care to ensure that you are getting all the relevant nutrition (possible from plant sources eg seaweed, natto, marmite etc) and constantly be on the lookout for symptoms of deficiencies

  • If you have indigestion, increased acid reflux, gas and bloating or prone towards soft or hard stools, you probably have some gut issues. This means that absorption of nutrients won’t be as good

  • If you constantly take antibiotics or have done so in the past, your gut bacteria may be deficient; again potentially leading to problems with gut nutrient absorption

  • Every so often, consider injectables as it won’t get lost in the gut.

  • If you already have symptoms, consider a course of injectables initially more frequently (eg weekly or fortnightly depending on which nutrient) before you taper it off. This is to allow your body to heal to a point where you won’t go back to ‘baseline’ so quickly. There’s also the problem of getting used to a certain level of energy. Most people with very low energy levels can never figure out how others go on. They also tend to be very happy with every little uplift in energy; forgetting what its like to have full functional energy. I just don’t think it makes good sense when cumulative additional changes make such a huge change in a person’s health. The time to stop would be when you start seeing negligible results. That usually means that you’re either optimised or if you’re still tired, that there is another reason for it.

 

I hope that you will enjoy this article…..

https://authoritynutrition.com/4-reasons-some-do-well-as-vegans/

 

Vit D- My Unbelievable Labs

This is a slightly more personal blog post as I’m still a little flustered about it.

 

I’ve been taking patient’s bloods and interpreting their labs for a long time now. My personal health, alongside my patients, has increased leaps and bounds (I do take a bit of my own advice!!). I have good hair and glowing, clear skin, good gut and good energy levels. On the whole, I’m in a pretty good place. Recently, I had the opportunity to get my blood drawn and decided to see what my labs look like.

 

Results came back and most things were as expected, except for my Vit D which was below normal. This annoyed me that the labs would make a mistake. So we called them up and asked them to retest it. I had had a Vit D injection, the whole 300,000 IU of it, just a couple weeks before. The results were clearly a lab error.

 

They retested it and it came back still in the red- very, very low, but a different number to before. This got me thinking. I’ve been raving about the benefits of Vitamin D to all my patients. I’ve asked them all to get an injection as I’d personally seen the benefits in myself and my patients. What was going on?

 

In 2015/2016, I’ve probably had 4-5 injections of Ergocalciferol, or Vit D2. Each time 300,000 IU. I haven’t taken any extra supplements at home. I went on a 2 week outdoorsy holiday in July/August and still have the tan from it now (November). The first injection was a life changer. I was extremely hot the night of the injection. Next day, I was bouncing. Similar but not as dramatic improvements with the next few injections. I needed very few clothes compared to others, could handle cold more than others (no coat in summer and only lightweight coats in autumn versus others who needed much more). In fact, I still go out with bare legs now.

 

My symptoms which made me think that I may be low in D again:

 

  • Energy levels were good but I started to find it slipping

  • I wasn’t recovering from night outs as well as usual

  • I also started noticing quite significant hair loss

  • My skin was simply not as smooth and blemish free as before. It was also duller

  • More importantly, I felt colder than I thought I should be feeling

  • I was feeling too hot or too cold suddenly- temperature regulation wasn’t right. This was a classic red flag for my own body and I recognised it

 

After my last injection, once again I didn’t feel the cold that much and temperature regulation improved. Energy levels came back but I was still more tired than usual. Yesterday- after the shock of my horrendous results- I had another D shot. I slept very well at night. Hands and feet are still cool but not cold. I feel good and fresh. I’ve had a birthday since with wonderful friends and parties for most nights of the week last week. And I’m still up and raring to go.

 

What hits me is that despite doing this for a living, I was oblivious to how low my own levels were. It must have been dangerously low when I first did a D shot. I come across as being bouncier and more energetic than most people. Even I realise that I’ve higher energy levels than others. So where does that put others? I think personally, because I make sure I’m balanced in other ways, it has not been obvious that I was so deficient. But its a cautionary tale nevertheless and I know that I will be making much more efforts to get myself tested more regularly and to make sure that I’m optimised nutritionally. Since my body cannot seem to make enough from all the sun I get (more than many others and usually without SPF on my body). I will also look into simpler and more cost effective ways to test for it so that patients can get themselves tested without too much effort. Watch this space…..

FYI, we have now introduced many more injectable services like our B cocktail (B12+B Complex), C, Magnesium, Glutathione etc as an injection or an intravenous push (for larger volumes). Do check our website more for info. My patients seem to love it as they keep coming back, despite the slight ouch!

LDN Stories- Down and Depressed Amir

Amir, 43, came to see me after being referred by his nutritionist who was seeing him for adrenal fatigue. He is a professional who came upon some hard times which affected him badly.

He was on quite a few supplements for his fatigue and showed some signs of hormonal imbalance. I also thought that his diet was quite poor which would affect him quite significantly. He had brain fog, constant fatigue, struggled to recover from exercise, was moody and depressed and could not sleep well. Here's his story in his words.....

"Hi Dr Bains,

Thank you very much for your help and support. It has been a real life saver.

Prior to this adrenal fatigue, I was very fit and healthy, exercised 4 times a week, and was successful. An abusive marriage, mom dying and extreme stress caused me to become ill and life has been a struggle since 2003. Three years ago, after finishing an MBA,  I crashed completely and started work with a nutrionist making slow progress.  Prior to the LDN, my energy levels were very very low to non existent,  my mood was very low to depressed, I struggled to get 5-6 hours very poor quality sleep, and woke up feeling unrefreshed with high adrenaline levels. I felt like a zombie ,put on weight, was unable to think straight, had very bad brain fog, and was unable to do anything due to very low energy levels.

The turnaround with LDN has been nothing short of miraculous, and a real game changer.

We started the dose at 3mg, and things got worse before they got better. The LDN really ramped up an already primed immune system, increased my adrenaline, caused flu and cold like symptoms, i.e. phlegm from nose and chest, aches and pains, especially back ache, skin was horrendous and sleep was very poor due to the increased adrenaline.  However, 2 weeks after this, the immune system settled and my sleep went from 5 hours to 7 hours, and sleep quality improved from 5 to 6 out of 10. After letting the body rest and recover for 2 weeks, we increased the LDN again, causing the same cycle, but each time resulting in slightly improved sleep. Now at 5mg and after 4 months, the turnaround has been dramatic. I can sleep for 9 - 11 hours, of good quality sleep ( 8 out of 10 ), and things are improving at a faster rate. Energy levels are higher, brain fog has lifted, and most dramatic of all, my mood has improved 100%. I no longer feel depressed, despite being sub-optimal. I wake up happier, relaxed, and with a positive mindset, excited about the future. 

The key to LDN was definitely perseverance. Each stage caused initial upset, and then the reward phase followed. The big pay off being 4 months down the line. Definitely worth the wait.

Without your help, I would not have made this breakthrough.

I am now hoping to proceed to the next level of the program with my nutritionalist, and start the anti-microbial phase, and to be able to tolerate it well, due to the LDN and enhanced sleep. 

I have taken the advice you provided 4 months ago and incorporated healthy fats into my diet, started cooking with coconut oil,  watched YouTube videos and vastly improved my cooking skills. I'm struggling to add in fermented foods, and this is something my nutritionist is keen to do at a later stage.

I will now look into SIBO and get back to you."

LDN Stories- Laura and her Mood Swings, Menstrual Problems, Back Pain and Fatigue

I decided to start this series of LDN stories as I felt that people interested in starting it needed to hear about it- as and when patients felt the need to share. It is also an important lesson in persevering as some stages of this journey can feel very difficult. 

Names will be changed but I will give a brief history of why they came to me. I will then put forth their stories in their own words which, in my opinion, is more powerful.

Laura, 36, came to see me on recommendation from her nutritionist. In summary, this is her history:

  • drug addiction for 5 years in late teens
  • Chronic anxiety and mood swing with a diagnosis of 'cyclical mood disorder' from early teen
  • adrenal fatigue
  • leaky gut
  • menstrual irregularities later on

Despite a difficult and protracted ill health history, she is currently doing her masters in a difficult 'sciency' subject and working as a research assistant in the meantime. She also has a 4 year old child. So here is a smart and motivated person, feeling like there's no light at the end of the tunnel but wanting desperately to just be normal and be a mum to her child.

Here's her story:

I was referred to Harpal by my nutritionist, as he felt this would be a useful therapy for me in the aftermath of adrenal fatigue and multiple recurring health problems. Harpal prescribed the LDN sublingual drops as they give you a method to introduce the drug slowly and minimise potential side effects - and I was glad we took this approach. I was optimistic about the LDN, but the initiation process has not been without its challenges! Within a week of being on 1mg I came out in a spectacular rash on my back - a collection of bright red, itchy circles. I contacted the clinic and they assured me that this could be a side effect of the LDN, so I stuck on 1mg and didn't increase my dose until they had settled down - which was about 8 or 9 days. After that, increasing to 1.5 and 2mg did not cause the emergence of any new circles.

 

And at this point I realised some quite important things: the chronic pains I'd had for nearly a year in my back and knee had lessened, suggesting their root cause was auto-immune rather than a simple misaligned joint - and just a week before my osteopath had admitted she really wasn't sure how to treat me as she couldn't do any more than she already had. I'd previously experienced terrible 'flare-ups' of this back pain which would leave me on crutches, and left with months of weakness in my core muscles. On LDN this residual weakness had completely disappeared. I felt fitter and had dispensed with the nagging muscle fatigue that had become normal over the last year. So I learnt that maybe there was more to this situation than I had considered, but I didn't mind because I was clearly doing the right things to deal with it.

 

However, I had been dosing in the morning as I wasn't brave enough to try at night - as soon as someone mentioned the possibility of insomnia I was pretty determined to be a morning doser! But it turned out the mornings weren't the right time for me - although I had begun to see some pretty impressive benefits, I noticed my mood was low for quite a few hours after my 9am dose - to the point even I was convinced to try evening dosing. The first few nights my sleep was a bit messed up - shallow with vivid dreams - but I was like a different person the next morning. I felt happy, together - and my thinking seemed clearer than usual despite being pretty tired. Over the next week I adjusted to the evening dosing and was waking up feeling I'd had enough sleep. I was feeling better than I have in a long time - more emotionally connected, and more effective in my day to day life.

 

Then a combination of things happened - I put my dose up 1mg in 2 weeks, and started holding the sublingual liquid in my mouth for longer. I'd realised I hadn't been doing it as well as I could have, and started timing myself to keep it there 5 minutes. I guess this meant I was jumping up more than I was used to, and within a week all the positive benefits just disappeared. I had pains again, terrible fatigue, muscle twitches, foggy thinking and bad sleep. I felt pretty disappointed! After a couple of weeks feeling sorry for myself and assuming this was just how I was now, I realised it could be the LDN and contacted Harpal for advice. I followed her suggestion of dropping my dose back 1mg, and within a day I started feeling better. 3 days later I'm feeling really good again - pretty much back to where I was before. So the moral of the story was take it slow....LDN works in mysterious ways and it definitely doesn't like being rushed!

Oh and I forgot to add - I used to have to get up and pee every night, but since the LDN that has just stopped. Not sure why but I'm pleased it has!

Testosterone Series 4- Let’s talk about Nebido, Sustanon and Enantate

This series has been a long time coming as my time gets limited and other interests drive my focus elsewhere but TRT is still one of the things I most enjoy doing. The idea of this blog is to give a more medically based opinion on the 3 commonest injectables used in the UK; my experience with it and my patients’ experience with it including labs.

 

Firstly, I’d like to touch upon the fact that this blog is not referring to testosterone cycles- what you normally see in forums- that focus more on body building. The focus is on sub-optimal testosterone levels being brought back up to optimal levels.

 

The 3 commonest injectables that I use at my practice and their various quirks are summarised below:

 

Sustanon 250

  • commonest due to price.

  • Comes in ampoule only. If you are getting it online in a vial, its not from a UK pharmacy.

  • Claims to be sustained release- hence called susta-non due to having 4 different esters (or carrier molecules). Each ester releases the testosterone at a different time and hence you get a more staggered release pattern where the peaks and troughs are more stable.

  • Single 1ml shot lasts 2.5 to 3 weeks. It can be given in divided doses.

  • Main disadvantage- carrier oil is peanut oil and benzyl alcohol. This is becoming a problem I’m seeing more and more of as its giving rise to side effects which I don’t get with other injectables. Most people with mild intolerances generally don’t even know they cannot handle peanut oil. When given in such large doses (1ml into the muscle), it can cause pain and local inflammation that lasts much longer than expected. As part of my practice is gut dysbiosis where I see a lot of food intolerances, I recognised this very early on. If this is your experience too, try changing to the other injectables or use creams.

  • The average response I get when I ask about peanuts is that my patients love it! Do keep an open mind about intolerances- just because you love it does not mean that you can handle it. Look out for other symptoms of intolerances like joint pains, rashes, headaches, flu-like symptoms etc. You may get none, or all of them.

 

Testosterone Enantate 250mg

  • This is the most similar to Cypionate that many people read about in forums. Cypionate is available in the US and some other countries but not in the UK. Its what I would put my patients on who need continuity of care from the US.

  • Its quite a bit more expensive that sustanon- stupidly more in fact. I don’t know why!

  • Comes in ampoule only. If you are getting it online in a vial, its not from a UK pharmacy. The ones in vials are considerably cheaper- according to google and from what some of my patients tell me- but we practitioners will never advocate it. Its just not worth it to me.

  • Is given in the same way as Sustanon- either single shot that last 2-3 weeks or in divided doses.

  • Carrier oil here is castor oil which is less allergenic (apparently) and benzyl benzoate.

  • I personally have never had a complaint with this so suspect that it probably is less allergenic.

  • If the price point of this and sustanon were the same, I would prefer using this.

Taken at our clinic

Taken at our clinic

 

Nebido 250mg (4ml)

  • This can hurt but its usually due to the volume of product injected into a small area. I occasionally inject it either in both buttock cheeks especially in very slim patients, or change directions still with the same entry point to spread things out a little.

  • This comes in a vial.

  • Carrier oil here is refined castor oil which is less allergenic (apparently) and benzyl benzoate.

  • I’m not a huge fan of Nebido but it has its place. I personally prefer it for patients who have completed their family (for potential fertility implications), travel a lot, have compliance issues or similar reasons.

  • This always suppresses your pituitary hormones which means that the negative feedback generated will block your own production of testosterone.

  • On a practical level, a lot of people don’t mind it and are happy to put up with some testicular shrinkage- as long as everything is being monitored regularly.

  • Others freak out a little when their pituitary levels of LH comes back as close to nonexistent. They can either opt for a different option or start on a HCG protocol (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) to stimulate their own production of testosterone alongside testosterone. Its a protocol used a lot in the US and quite many of my American patients request the same continuity of care as it works well for them.

  • There are also a small number who really feel the peak- not in a good way. Optimal levels of testosterone usually makes you calmer and less anxious but too much or too little can give rise to similar symptoms paradoxically when it comes to moods and aggression.

 

Other Options

  • Bioidentical topical creams from Compounding Pharmacies- I use these a lot and my patients love them (mostly). They are much easier to use compared to the gels available on the NHS (messy, too large a volume and sometimes does not give the blood picture expected which may point to user inconsistency in application).

  • My topicals come in 3 forms- creams, gels or liposomal gel. I have so far only ever ordered the liposomal gel as its absorbability is far superior at no extra cost.

  • As these are bespoke, there is a period of trial and error until you find the right dose after which, we simply make the cream in said dose for each patient.

  • Its more physiological with everyday application and so mimics the body’s own production more closely. This also translate into less pituitary suppression.

  • Disadvantage- some people perceive creams to be less effective (not true). Some don’t like having to apply a cream everyday.

  • Transdermal Implants- not a commonly available option and I do not have much experience in it for testosterone. This is something I’m hoping to explore as I believe that there is a place for it seeing as it has a 4-5 month life cycle. My experience in implants is in contraceptive implants which I did not like. Similar to Nebido, my personal feeling is that in order to achieve such longevity, it needs to be quite powerful which can give rise to side effects initially. However, do watch this space as I’m hoping to explore this further and may find myself changing my mind about it.

 

I hope that this article will help you gain an idea of what is available legally via a pharmacy in this country and to be able to tell the difference between what may or may not suit you. Or why you may be reacting to something others don’t have a problem with. As with most things medical, its not quite that simple but getting the right balance is possible and certainly achievable.

 

The IV Vitamin Cocktail Hangover- When You Feel Worse After....

 

Many people know of Vitamin Cocktails and in particular Myers- the best known of them. It consists of a mixture of Vitamin C, B-Complex and Magnesium with a few variations to it depending on where the stock comes from.

 

Most practitioners work with the basic Myers first before adding other additives to it. Frequently added ingredients are glutathione (a powerful antioxidant), high dose vitamin C, amino acids amongst others (Taurine, L-Carnitine, L-Lysine, Acetylcysteine, L-Arginine, L Carnosine) and minerals. Practitioners who are trained will usually let you know what you can add to benefit the particular issue that you’re interested in improving.

 

Most people feel very good on Myers. However, recently I’ve had a few patients who felt worse after a session. Symptoms they had included:

  • Headache

  • General unwell

  • Diarrhoea or constipation

  • Sinus congestion or flu-like symptoms

  • Body aches

 

Naturally they were worried after having experienced only great symptoms before. I congratulated all of them. I was really pleased about it! This is what happened….

 

  • They got dumped!

  • Their cells dumped stored wastes and toxins into the blood stream to be excreted via pee, poo or sweat.

  • Occasionally, the innate metabolic pathways are stagnant or are already overworked. In this instance, the symptoms can also feel bad

  • Their detox organs are being overworked. These are your liver, skin, lymphatic system, kidney, colon and lungs.

  • Their detox capacity is good or has improved

 

To me this is a good thing, although not comfortable to go through. At the very least, it means that stored toxins are being released and cells are now cleaner. There are a few things that can be done to decrease the effects of this happening. So after a Myers, it is usually a good idea to:

 

  • Lay off alcohol for a while to allow your liver to recover from the toxin load from your cells

  • Drinks lots of water to flush things out

  • If you have diarrhoea like symptoms, do not take anti-diarrhoeal but let the body dispose off as much poo as it needs to

  • If you have constipation type symptoms, take high dose oral vitamin C and magnesium which can cause loose motion (a good thing here)

  • Try a colonic if you’re up for it

  • Take a magnesium salt bath. The magnesium can help draw out more toxins from your skin, speeding up the process of toxin extraction.

  • If you are familiar with intermittent fasting, its a good thing to try to let your digestive system take a break. Alternatively, consider going on a bone broth day. The fat and protein in the broth should keep you satiated. If you would like to do a juice fast instead, do include lots of vegetables in it as a fruit only juice can make you feel worse (due to its effect on insulin). Add some coconut oil to it to slow down absorption of glucose.


In a nutshell, keep going with the cocktails and make sure that you inform the clinic you had your IVs regarding side effects, if any. Most these should pass and in the long run, you will have healthier cells.

Gluten and Thyroid- What’s the connection?

 

Many people who are fairly well read about thyroid problems will know that the general advice is to go gluten free. This is for both hyper and hypothyroid, especially if one has autoimmune thyroid disease like Graves’ and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. We will be talking mostly about Hashimoto’s when referring to autoimmune thyroid disorder.

Hashimoto’s is usually diagnosed by doing a thyroid antibody profile. The profile consists of Thyroid Peroxidase Antibody (TPO Ab) and Thyroglobulin Antibodies (TgAb). TPOAbs are present in nearly all (>90 %) patients, while TgAbs can be seen in approximately 80%. So a negative test does not necessarily mean that you don’t have Hashimoto's.

This test is not done that often in the NHS as it does not alter management in most instances. With functional medicine practitioners however, we treat most autoimmune diseases by attempting to decrease the body’s attempt to attack itself.

The problem with gluten is that the molecular structure of the protein component of it- gliadin- actually resembles the structure of the thyroid gland. When gluten/gliadin is eaten, it passes into the blood stream and the body tags it for destruction by the immune system antibodies. These same antibodies will then also attack the thyroid gland because of the resemblance to gliadin.

In people eating gluten regularly  for example toast in the morning, sandwich for lunch and pasta for dinner, you can see how over time, this can cause a critical situation of your thyroid gland being constantly attacked a few times a day, every day for months or years on end. One frequent reason that despite ‘adequate’ T4 supplementation, those with Hashimoto’s simply don’t feel that well.

This is also the reason that desiccated thyroid like Armour, is not a good idea in autoimmune thyroid. The animal glandular tissue looks like thyroid tissue and is then attacked by the body which subsequently also attacks the thyroid gland at the same time. In these instances, I prefer using compounded thyroid T4 and T3 where relevant.


The take home message is that if you have thyroid problems and you’re not sure if you have autoimmune thyroiditis and your GP is not happy to test you for it, do try going completely gluten free for at least 3 weeks and see how you feel. Its well worth your time and effort.

 

LDN- the miracle cure?

I stumbled upon LDN (low dose naltrexone) not too long ago and was intrigued and felt a need to find out more and more. Being in the field that I’m in, that’s actually quite a big deal. We are exposed to so many new ‘miracle cures’ from prescription medications to herbs and supplements that it becomes a problem to know when to stop.

There’s also the bias of the person ‘pushing’ the agenda. I don’t mean this in a bad way as most people ‘push’ their ideas based on their own experience, expertise, passion and interests. Just a quick look at amazon books will tell you that. I’ve come to the point where I’ve given up on deciding who the ‘master’ is.

In the hormone world, the ‘master hormone’, depending on who wrote the book, is one of these below:

  • Melatonin

  • DHEA

  • Human Growth Hormone

  • Thyroid

  • Leptin

 

I’m quite sure I’m forgetting a few but those spring to mind.

 

The world of supplements and prescriptions is even more fun. Its a little hard to follow but I’m sure most of you know a little about Goji berries, macca, ginseng, garlic, ginger, turmeric,  Vit B12, Vit C, Vit D, Vit K, Magnesium and the list goes on.

 

So to bring things back to my original point- it actually takes quite a lot to get me excited these days. I’m a little jaded…

 

LDN first came to my attention when I was researching SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). Because I didn’t know anything about it, I did the usual due diligence of giving it my hour’s worth. The hour turned to many hours and before I knew it, I was hooked. I didn’t have any experience in it but has many patients who I thought fitted the profile of how it could help. I even created a special LDN only consultation to see what would happen (this is quite different from my usual consults but I wanted it to be more accessible).

 

This is my opinion to date. I’m still in early days but already have a good number of patients on it at present. Most people have autoimmune issues. I personally prefer the sublingual route of administration as it bypasses the gut. From my experience, even those without obvious gut issues may have absorbability problems and its worth the slightly higher price point.

 

It is NOT a miracle cure and is not even a cure at all. What it does is to facilitate the body in mending itself by increasing our own production of feel good neurotransmitters. These don’t only make us feel good but also improve our immune system- one of the hardest things to achieve. Most people should anticipate that they will be on it for at least 3 months. Below is what you can expect (this differs based on diseases etc but is a good general guide):

  • Around 30% won’t find that it makes any difference at all

  • Of the remainder 70%, around 15% might have miraculous results

  • 30% will find a niceable difference

  • The rest will not find much of a difference until they stop it- upon which they will then realise that there actually was a positive difference

 

*Please bear in mind that this is a rough estimate of my personal experience and may not correspond to other practitioners or to what you may have read. This is not a scientific accurate analysis.

 

My opinion on it- and I promise I will update you whenever I get more information- is this:

  • Due to the relatively low cost of it, I believe that it is worth a trial of at least 3 months

  • For those in whom it works, some need to take it for life if theirs is a lifelong autoimmune problem

  • For others, they only need to take it until their symptoms clear up and in my opinion, probably upto 3 months after. These would be the gut dysbiosis patients amongst others.

  • For mild side effects, lower the dose but do persevere

 

If one has realistic expectations of what can be achieved, I believe that this could prove to be a very exciting opportunity and another avenue for those who have exhausted all other avenues.

10 Lesser Known Benefits of TRT

Most people think of Testosterone replacement therapy as a “Libido and Muscle” therapy. I have however, started noticing a trend of more and more people coming in asking for the lesser known benefits of TRT. These are usually people with normal jobs, family and life, just wanting a better quality of life. So here a little peep into what people are telling me:

 

  1. My hands and feet are warmer.

  2. I’m much calmer and not so anxious anymore.

  3. I’m able to handle stress better and hence, I feel that I perform better at work.

  4. I have the will and energy to play with my kids again.

  5. I’ve stopped yelling at my kids (as much) and the noise they make does not irritate me the way it used to.

  6. I’m more assertive and stand up for myself a lot more (to the detriment of some partners and co-workers!).

  7. I wake up more refreshed. My sleep has improved.

  8. I’ve put on weight but I’m trimmer (muscle weighs more than fat)

  9. I’ve better hair growth on my face (good for the current facial hair trend but not for all)

  10. Brain function is much better. Everything seems clearer and there is no brain fog anymore.

 

I decided to write this in the first person as its literally a snippet from different people’s stories. As a practitioner, its very gratifying to hear. It also means that after a while, they forget about harpal clinic- a wonderful thing- as life feels right again. These are on top of the well known benefits of libido enhancement and erectile issues; also the muscle building capacity which is dose dependent. Incidentally, this also applies to women on TRT.


There probably are other contributing factors as well as I tend to manage stress where relevant, at the same time. This is hugely important as both stress hormone and testosterone share similar building blocks. Therefore a ‘steal’ happens whenever more stress hormones need to be built, as they are the more important in hormonal hierarchy. In any case, these snippets are from my 3 month reviews post commencing therapy and its likely to stay the same or improve. Pretty exciting I’d say!

 

 


Fat, Spotty and Hairy- Sod’s Law Right?! Or is it?

Mood Swings PCOS.jpg

If you look around, the description above fits many people. They can be mildly overweight to quite big. Look at their skin and its usually not great. Hairiness is a little harder to detect as it so easy to get rid of these days. Maybe this describes you. It feels terribly unfair that not only does the person have to put up with the extra weight, but why the bad skin and all that hair (except where you want hair)?

 

 

This description funnily enough affects both sexes- again, look around you. In women or girls, it most commonly Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome or PCOS. In men, there’s no equivalent term for it but part of the problem is still the same. This means that management is not all the same, but along similar lines. Its quite a bad problem as to the average person, someone with these symptoms can come across as being self indulgent (with food), lazy (with skin care and hair) and joyless. Very unfair as it certainly is not true.

 

The classic PCOS person is overweight, hairy with bad skin. The not so classic ones- probably the more common ones may have amongst other things:

  • normal weight to underweight

  • acne

  • oily skin

  • dandruff

  • thinning hair or hair loss

  • horrible PMS (the b*@$ from hell to you!)

  • erratic periods to absent periods

  • cysts on ovary (not as common as you’d think!)

  • slightly miserable personality or tendency for depression or feeling down

  • multiple miscarriages

  • infertility

 

Some people exhibit none of this obviously and it only becomes obvious upon having multiple miscarriages or have other fertility issues. A lot of people think that it settles upon hitting menopause but it doesn’t as the main hormone involved is Insulin- which is produced throughout life. The main problem with PCOS is actually suspecting it. If you read this and it resonates with you either for yourself or for someone you know, its a big step forward. The average person with PCOS is usually missed as most doctors are trained to pick up the obvious clues. My mentor trained me to assume that everyone has it until proven otherwise. A really good way to approach it I feel as quite frequently blood results come back normal- but what we’re interested in knowing is the ratio of the hormones in relation to one another; not in relation to a set criteria.


This blog is mainly about wanting to put the word out there, to get the bells ringing and to make you think twice. In another blog I’ll cover what we can do to help ourselves and when you need to consider getting help. Research it more- there’s a lot of information out there and feel free to share in our comments.

Fabulous Five

Winter is here, so bring on the slew of treatments, products and supplements to calm, heal and protect your body inside and out from the dark dreary nights, fierce winds and central heating. Scared and feel like the only option is to hibernate until Spring? Fear not...
We've narrowed down the five superhero treatments and products available at Harpal Clinic to fight off all that Winter has in store and put the spring back in your stride.

Top five treatments

1. Radio Frequency (the non surgical face lift)
Heat energy is zapped deep into your skin to boost collagen and leave you with firmer, tightened and evenly toned skin. The treatment starts with a thorough cleanse, a gel is applied and the RF wand is glided across your face. It will feel soothing with a sightly warm sensation and is followed by a healing serum to seal everything in. This is ideal for victims of saggy skin and the best thing is...RF can treat any part of your body. Saggy knees, boobies and bums beware!

2. Micro Needling (collagen induction therapy)
Think Derma Roller, to the power of 10! Micro Needling is the Trickster, it causes injury to the skin and fools it into repairing itself. The healing process then stimulates collagen production, heals acne, scars, cellulite, stretch marks, wrinkles and more. Treatment begins on cleansed skin, topical anaesthesia is applied to the area 15 minutes prior and then the therapist is let loose with a wand yielding 16 tiny needles. Later you may feel a little tender, some dryness and peeling for the next 2-3 days. This is your skin healing itself. Results can be seen immediately and will improve over a period of weeks and months.

3. Intraceutical Hollywood Facial
This a favourite amongst the heroes at Harpal Clinic and endorsed by an array of Hollywood stars. An all rounder it treats wrinkles, fine lines and hydrates your skin in an hour of pure bliss. Following the three step hyaluronic layering process, you'll leave looking visibly refreshed and plump.

4. Micro Dermabrasion+Electroporation
The AquaTouch gadget will gently exfoliate away dead skin cells from the surface. This polishing treatment uses water micro dermabrasion technique so rest assured, it is kinder to the skin. The added super power of electroporation will increase permeability of skin cells and allow serums to sink in with supreme effect. Treatments range from 30-70 minutes long and you'll experience zero downtime. 

5. IV Vitamin Cocktail Infusion aka Myers Cocktail
This is an intravenous nutrient potion. A mixture of Vit B, Vit B, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, minerals such as magnesium sulphate and calcium. This will enhance your immune system, reduce fatigue and help anyone with digestive problems, bloating and allergies. Think of this as a boost, it will help you stay perky and protect against the nasty cold and flu viruses winter unleashes.

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The superhero products to get you through the big freeze

1. Intraceutical 3-step (sold separately)
This trio of hyaluronic beauties will help you Revive, Replenish and Protect. Designed to work in harmony with each other they combine powerful ingredients to fight against the signs of ageing. With the option of Rejuvenate, Opulence, Atoxelene and Clarity to target your specific concerns, these heroes have been endorsed by an array of Hollywood celebrities.

2. NeoStrata Problem Dry Skin Cream £36
The combination of freezing temperatures and central heating can cause havoc on your skin. This rich cream can be used on any part of your body experiencing extreme dryness. Jam packed with moisturising oils, beeswax and other goodies it will reduce flaking, chapping and will even help heavily calloused areas, yet it is safe and gentle enough to use on sensitive areas such as your face. 

 

3. Intraceutical Boosters £39.95 each
These nifty little guys are brilliant. Four powerful serums allowing you to customise your skincare, they can be used alone or combined with your daily skincare.

  • Vit C+B Booster to Smooth, Brighten Strengthen
  • Collagen+ Booster to Restore, Tighten, Volume
  • Antioxidant+ Booster to Detox, Revitalise, Balance
  • Vit A+ Booster to Regenerate, Clarify, Refine

 

 

4. NeoStrata Anti-Oxidant Defence Serum £78
Another serum to put the spring back into your skin, this product contains 8 antioxidants which will combat oxidative damage and fight against ageing. Wrinkly, sallow, dull skin be gone!

5. HealGel Intensive £37.50
We rave about HealGel at Harpal Clinic. Created by world leading plastic surgeons and biochemists its purpose is to soothe, repair and protect your skin. This versatile product can be applied anywhere on your body and is gentle enough to use on your face (a great base as a makeup primer) and even soothe intimate areas after a waxing.

The Floyd Mayweather Scandal- Can Vitamin Infusions Really Enhance Performance?

 

The recent scandal of boxer Floyd Mayweather in his fight against Manny Pacquiao, brought out of hiding the increasingly common use of intravenous infusions as a performance enhancer within the athletic community.

See http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/boxing/34216157

 

Traditionally, the infusions were seen within medical tents of marathons and triathlons. These infusions generally consisted of normal saline, some had glucose to replenish lost supplies, and some vitamins and minerals. They were used mainly as recovery tools instead of performance enhancing tools. These days, it has become increasingly trendy for top level athletes who compete in multi-day events to use these drips to speed recovery in preparation for the next day’s events.

 

Which brings us to the question of…..does it really work?

 

Factors supporting its use

  • It obviously works as otherwise it wouldn’t be used in those medical tents as a recovery aid.

  • The nutrients go directly into your blood stream; bypassing a potentially sluggish digestive system and hence a level of malabsorption.

  • Nutrients do not have to depend on the human body’s natural inefficiency.

  • The drip can be tailored to not only address vitamin and mineral deficiencies, but also to include amino acids where there’s a need.

  • It hastens cell recovery, regeneration, ATP regeneration (which is why it works so well in chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia), new cell formation amongst other things.

  • It helps with mental clarity and focus.

  • It can help in nutrient deficiencies where none are suspected. These nutrients are all water soluble meaning that it gets disposed off if there’s excess. So in periods of need, one has to replenish it with food or supplements. Unlike fat soluble nutrients that can be released from fatty storage on demand. Periods of need tends to be during times when the body is under constant stress, like training for a big sporting event, and so its easy to see how even those who eat very well can potentially have a deficit.

 

Factors against its use

  • It can seem like an unfair advantage, despite the fact that there are no ‘drugs’ being delivered.

  • A recent study done actually showed that the very low tech ‘drinking water’ produced better results in a selection of athletes who were split into 3 groups. The athletes were put through mild exercise in the heat for 2-4 hours and dehydrated by 4% of body mass. During recovery, the first group was given no water, 2nd group-  an IV drip, 3rd group- drinking water. They were then made to repeat the exercises again. (1)

  • The first group, unsurprisingly, reported it as being the hardest to continue the exercises. Surprisingly, group 2 with the drip, actually found it harder to exercise compared to group 3. The hypothesis here may be that the sensation of drinking a cool drink sends important signals to the brain about thirst. This seems to suggest that both the action of drinking as well as internal rehydration seem to have a potentially equally important role.

  • There’s the hypothetical risk of over-hydration although I suspect its fairly small unless the practitioner really does not understand IVs.

  • There could be a placebo effect which could very well be due to the fact that being forced to sit still for an hour while the drip is taking place, is helping recovery.

 

Bottomline is that for multiday events, it does help hasten recovery for the next day’s event. For the rest, they can choose to use it post or pre-event to boost the levels of nutrients and aid cell healing and regeneration or simply wait and rest until things feel like its back to normal again.

 

  1. Riebe D., Maresh C.M., Armstrong L.E. et al. (1997). Effects of oral and intravenous rehydration on ratings of perceived exertion and thirst. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 29, 117-124.

Wax in the City

Everything you wanted to know about intimate waxing but were too squeamish to ask

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It's no secret that that we have hair in other places, not just on our head. And although the consensus is split on how sexy or unsexy hair down below is, there is one thing for sure; like every well maintained bush, making little tweaks is the only way to keep it tamed.

Take it from us, we understand how intimidating and often embarrassing stripping down to your birthday suit can be, furthermore how confusing the different types of waxes can be. Recently, we've had a lot of first-time clients calling to make a booking sounding rather nervous and confused, so here we'll diminish those qualms with a Q&A with our resident therapist Viola.

Q: How can I prepare myself before a wax?

A quick shower is all it takes, lets face it girls, it can get a little humid (and smelly) down there at the best of times especially when you're running around the city. If you have an appointment at lunch or after work, it's a good idea to use a baby wipe or even a little tissue dampened with water. Remember to wipe front and back! If you're waxing other parts of your body and have time to spare the night before, why not exfoliate, it will help reduce ingrown hairs.

Q: Can I book an appointment whilst on my period?

Not a good idea, ladies. You'll be super sensitive during your monthly cycle, especially in the nether regions, so Viola recommends that you hold tight until your period is finished.

Q: How long should I wait in between waxes?

Hair growth differs from person to person due to hormonal factors, but you should usually only need to wax your bikini area once every three weeks. For best results, you should wait until the hair is at least 2mm in length.

Q: What if I shave in between waxes?

Shaving is classed as a crime in Viola's treatment room, so don't do it! Resist the urge for that quick fix, not only will shaving only last you a day or two of smoothness, you'll risk irritation and ingrown hairs. Viola can always, ALWAYS tell when people have razored in between waxes because the roots usually bleed. Ouch!

Q: What is the difference between a Brazilian and Hollywood wax?

We don't want to overload you with descriptive explanations of the different types of intimate waxes, so heres an image to settle the confusion once and for all.

Q: Any aftercare tips?

The list goes on when it comes to aftercare, but here are Viola's top tips:

  • Avoid exercising, swimming, saunas and sun exposure after a wax, it causes excess sweat and friction leading to irritation

  • Avoid sex immediately after the treatment, you may be slightly red and inflamed, so its best to let it settle for one night

  • Keep the area clean and dry. Wash with intimate hygiene products  which do not contain alcohol or scents

  • HEALGEL is the Holy Grail at Harpal Clinic. Developed by leading British plastic surgeons, it will soothe, repair and protect. It can be applied topically anywhere on the body and is highly recommended by Viola as an aftercare product

  • It's normal to feel irritation for up to three days after waxing, any longer, theres something wrong!

Q: Any advice for wax virgins?

  • If you're thinking of coming to Harpal Clinic, it's likely that you either live or work in the City of London, so we already know a bikini wax won't phase you! Intimate waxes can take between 20-40 minutes so easily scheduled during lunch or after work

  • We won't lie, it will hurt, especially the first few times, but don't let that put you off, in time you'll only feel a little sting!

  • The pro's far outweigh the con's when it come to waxing, as long as you stick to it and make it a regular habit

  • If you're nervous, don't be! Rest assured that you are in good hands, Viola has years of experience and the most amazing ability to make you forget all of life's worries

  • You will have to take off your undies, don't be intimated, Viola is a professional, she's seen it all

  • What to wear? Advisable to wear loose clothing, dress or trousers are fine, remember you may be slightly sore after the treatment. A spare pair of undies might be useful.

Hello Boys...

And finally, gentlemen, may we have your attention. We don't cater for mens intimate waxing but we can definitely help you with every inch of hair on your back, chest, arms and legs! The same rules apply in terms of preparation and aftercare.

See What Intraceuticals Hollywood Facial Did To Half My Face!

We have a wonderful new aesthetician, Violetta,  who joined our team recently. In her late thirties and tremendously experienced, she had not come across Intraceuticals oxygen facial yet and so we organised a training session for her.

 

I was the guinea pig and Sonia, our facialist extraordinaire to the Hollywood A-lister and also our trainer (lucky me I know!)- did one side of my face during the training. Its very important for us that all our therapists know exactly what our products can do to a person’s skin and so we were very keen for Violetta to get a sense of the ‘lift’ achievable.

 

Its been awhile since I’ve done a ‘half face’ for this so whilst I’m aware of how powerful intraceuticals serums are, I wasn’t quite prepared for the difference between the right and left side of my face. I’m attaching my picture. One side is completely lifted! Look at the dark circles and the difference in the eyelids. Today, 5 days post facial, my face still feels really plump and is definitely hydrated.

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We have also acquired another machine that I’ve had my eye on for quite a while- Aquatouch microdermabrasion with electroporation. It uses a water microdermabrasion technique and as such is much gentler than the usual microdermabrasion. Electroporation is where the electrical permeability within the cell membrane is changed so that the serums are able to penetrate deeper. We intend to use this as a stand alone device and also in combination with Intraceuticals to get a double-WOW effect. So, watch this space…...


Fasting for Fitness- Yesterday's News or is there Firm Science?

I'm probably a bit late (by a few years) in writing this post. It is however Ramadan and I'm aware that some of my Muslim patients are fasting. This post follows on from the 'trendy' fasts with equally trendy names like the 5:2, intermittent fasting, juice fasts, fasting cure etc (no, I haven't read them all). Also I was at an event recently where we were all discussing the different 'fasts' we were on.

Personally, I do mini- fasts and I try to do them a few times a week. For me, it literally means prolonging the time between 2 meals. The longest period of not eating is naturally night time sleep. So what I tend to do is to prolong the time before I eat my breakfast; or as it so happens these days, its straight to lunch, after my morning tea. So strictly speaking, its not even a traditional fast as I have milk in my tea- but the benefits are still there and makes the whole 'fasting' easier to incorporate as a lifestyle choice. I skip this on days where I anticipate a particularly stressful day (not great if adrenally fatigued) or if I simply would like some breakfast. To me, the key is in the fact that its my choice and I don't feel deprived. I do not subscribe to the 'breakfast is the most important meal' hypotheses. I mean, our ancestors certainly did not have that kind of luxury.... 

What I find is that I end up requiring less food throughout the day. I'm also fuller with smaller quantities of food. I'm careful about not breaking my fast with anything processed or high carb. It also makes life somewhat simpler and certainly cheaper. There is no mid-afternoon slump- a very interesting finding. There is more energy throughout the day. I also tend not to think of food quite so much as normal. That's just me.

I'd like to share an interesting article about fasting, again with the hope that you'll ask some questions and research this yourself. If nothing else, its actually a rather painless way of keeping weight gain in check!

The New Silent Killer..... (Try Guessing!!)

A recent daily mail article highlighted an exceptionally important factor that has been hidden or not understood or ignored for so long. It attempted to explain why there is a sudden increase in a variety of diseases that were not so prolific some time ago.

Just think of the people you know, or the people you know who know people suffering from:

  • heart diseases
  • scary 'cholesterol'
  • high blood pressure
  • diabetes
  • dementia including Alzheimers
  • curiously enough, autoimmune diseases like Hashimoto's thyroiditis, Rheumatoid arthritis, SLE, ME, MS, irritable bowel and ulcerative colitis- words you never though would be in your dictionary but now feel like common terms
  • of course the multiple types and varieties of cancers
  • depression- so common these days, even in the young
  • autism

Which brings me to last year's Halloween blog post that I wrote

 

It begs the intelligent reader to question- what can I do? Obviously the solution is not in popping pills. We have been doing that for too many years now. Either the pharmacological industries have not caught up to doing a better job coming up with better drugs (go on....blame them!) or we must be doing something wrong. The thing is, with the glut of information that is presently out there, there's also a glut of misinformation and contradictory information. So who has the right answers?

At this point in time, the best that we can do is accumulating information and constantly asking questions. Also equally important is reading both sides of the story (eg fat is good for you vs fat is bad for you). The article I've shared with you will hopefully make you question things again. If that's all it does at this stage, its enough as a first step. A first baby step towards a lifelong journey of learning and hopefully better health.

The answer, by the way, is inflammation.

Click here for the daily mail article:

Non-surgical Face and Jawline Lift- before and after, 10 months on

I first did my half face non surgical radiofrequency lift trial at the end of May 2014. 3.5 months later, I was supposed to do the other side, but decided to do my whole face instead.

 

So now, almost 10 months later, I have worked once on my left side but have twice on the right side of my face. For all our patients, we tell them that results are best around the 3 month mark which is the best time to repeat treatment.

 

So what are the differences I find on both sides of my face:

  • Pores are significantly smaller on the right, visible with naked eye

  • Naso- labial fold (nose to mouth fold) is heavier on the left- again significant

  • My face is still more symmetrical than this time last year

  • Unexpected finding: dynamic wrinkles around my eyes is much, much milder around my right side

  • I have sun damage on my forehead- its less rough on the right

  • Skin is thicker on the temples on the right (more visible blood vessels on the left)

Its hard to capture in photographs as its much clearer in person. Subtle but definite difference.

Its hard to capture in photographs as its much clearer in person. Subtle but definite difference.

 

I now cannot wait to get my left side done. I’m done experimenting! It works- really, really well…. and the best part is that it is so natural and my skin simply looks healthy and radiant.

Ps- I have also done my mummy tummy and will do my decolletage as a preventive as results in this area is so good.

For people who have lost or intend to lose a lot of weight, doing this regularly will help with tightening of excess loose skin. I've done this on bellies, knees, underneath man-boobs post losing weight (works great), elbows and crepey armpit skin (again, works great)!

 

Grow Your Own Face

With so many new advances in clinical skin care, the ones that excite me the most are products that encourage your own body to work hard for great skin.

What is great skin?

  • Skin that is clear with little to no blemishes

  • Acne-free

  • Skin that has normal thickness

  • Skin with a slight translucent ‘glowing’ quality to it

  • Clear of uneven pigmentation

  • Line free in the young and line appropriate in older people

  • good texture with minimal enlarged pores

So how would you achieve this?

A good way to think of skin care is to consider how you would target all the different layers of skin.

  • For the top layer (epidermis), peels are brilliants, microdermabrasion is okay and home care exfoliants are good as a top-up. This gets a big tick in getting your body to work for it!

  • Then the middle layer (dermis) and deeper layers, this is where a lot of wear and tear occurs and can give long lasting results. This is also where most of my excitement lies as one key component of good quality, thick skin is plenty of collagen. Top notch quality skin care products can deliver this, albeit to a lesser degree compared to other modalities. Our skin care of choice at the clinic is Intraceuticals (excellent for plumping and hydration), Neostrata (acid based, powerful and hugely effective skincare which complements our other skincare), organic non-allergenic Pinks Boutique and we will shortly be introducing Skinceuticals.

  • 3 different modalities come to mind- the first is causing ‘controlled injury’ to the skin eg microneedling and radiofrequency. In microneedling, minute pin prick wounds are made in the skin which forces the skin to send all their healing soldiers to repair. This results in plumper skin with better texture, smaller pores and more even colour. In radiofrequency (RF), a form of energy is transmitted which then gets converted to heat energy to around 60-62C in the deeper layers (with our machine in any case). This causes collagen bundling which appears as immediate tightening visible straight away. The body then repairs itself over the course of 3-4 months. Results are excellent here. Then some clever people decided to combine the two- so there is RF microneedling which I consider to be the star treatment for facial rejuvenation with results constantly improving up to 9 months later. Our machine is the Secret RF.

  • The second is drinking the stuff eg collagen in medi-grade products like Aneva Derma (also brilliant for joint health) and Skinade- quality differs a lot for oral collagen supplements but these two products have good science behind them and evidence that they make a difference.

  • The third is a not-so-new concept in fillers, but surprisingly, one that has been slow to catch on- I suspect due to lack of patient education. The more well-known product here is Sculptra- which works great but is more cumbersome. The newer product, Ellanse, which works just as well, if not better, has both the qualities of a filler (immediate results visible) and the longevity of Sculptra- where desired. It has different products that have different longevity. The best part for me is that while the filler part of Ellanse decreases (just like with any filler), your own body’s response to it, ie the collagen stimulation of your own tissue, continues along. By the end of the year- for the 1 year product- you will have a plumper appearance which is completely natural looking, as its your own collagen. The comments that you’ll likely get is that you look ‘refreshed and rested’ as opposed to ‘who’s your doctor?’

So, very exciting developments in the industry and its great to know that its possible to look natural and more age-appropriate- which is a trend that we're seeing more and more of; and one that is my personal preference and what I would encourage anyone to aspire to.

Testosterone Series 3- Libido and Sexual Dysfunction

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Sexual dysfunction is possibly the commonest reason men visit their doctors for those who think beyond the viagras and cialis; and are keen on understanding their testosterone levels.

 

Some common manifestations of low T sexually in men:

  • decrease in frequency of morning erections
  • decrease in strength of morning erections
  • takes more concentration to get an erection
  • takes more concentration to then keep it going
  • decrease in the volume of ejaculate
  • losing an erection halfway or not able to maintain an erection
  • decrease interest in sex and low libido
  • little to no erection ie sexual dysfunction
  • secondary premature ejaculation (as concerned that one may lose erection)
  • a sense that the penis feels smaller when fully erect than before

 

In women, it mostly manifests as a decrease in libido and loss of interest in sex. Some women will find it harder to orgasm or that it takes longer to stimulate than they used to remember.

 

Its one of those situations that generally creeps up on people with daily life stresses playing a big part. As more and more raw materials are required to keep our stress hormones (that are necessary to survival, unlike testosterone) in good supply, a ‘steal’ situation occurs that reroutes materials so that less is available to make up hormones at the bottom of the hormonal cascade.

 

In many cases, it becomes a situation where the the couple simply prefer the TV to doing anything more physical and slowly start avoiding ‘sexy’ situations without even realising it. Or one partner may perceive a sense of decrease in attention from their partner, occasionally even leading to accusations of cheating.

 

Dealing with these situations can be fairly complex with no easy one size fits all formula. The longer it is left, the worse it can become as it may come to a point where there is psychological impact (much harder to deal with!). Also, a more holistic approach is generally required to prevent so much ‘stealing’ and to balance the other hormones at the same time for optimum performance.

 

On the whole, it is still manageable, preventable and treatable in majority of people. It also adds tremendously to the release of ‘feel good’ neurotransmitters, which then decreases the stress hormones, and gives rise to deeper sleep. So quite frequently a win-win situation!

 

My love for HealGel Eye

After reading some very positive reviews online and hearing some great feedback from our clients, I'd been eagerly waiting to finish off my current eye cream so I could try HealGel Eye. My main concern is premature ageing around the eye area. I notice one or two fine lines creeping up on me and a shadow under my eye that just wasn't there six months ago...

Here's what I love about it:

The first thing I was impressed with is how matte it looks on the skin, it's lightweight, applies smoothly and leaves no nasty residue behind.

Whilst I don't suffer from much puffiness, there is an instant cooling effect on my skin.

The inner corner of my eye is definitely a shade or too lighter after six weeks of use and I have found myself using less concealer.

I like the way you can see how much of the product you have left as the bag containing the product rises up. In fact, the packaging in general is very nice, it's simplistic but colourful.

The price, it's affordable, doesn't break the bank, meaning I can buy yet another (much needed...) lipstick.

So far, so good, thanks HealGel, a very welcome addition to my skincare regime!