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Dr. Ruscio Radio: Health, Nutrition and Functional Medicine

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Cutting edge information in health, nutrition and functional medicine distilled into practical advice you can use to improve your health.

Cutting edge information in health, nutrition and functional medicine distilled into practical advice you can use to improve your health.
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Cutting edge information in health, nutrition and functional medicine distilled into practical advice you can use to improve your health.




Flex Your Metabolism & Add Endurance Training for Performance

It can be useful for all of us to have nutrition and fitness guidance every now and then, to pull us out of ruts and encourage greater breadth and balance in our routines. Those who have adopted a paleo-style diet may trend towards a too high fat intake and may be surprised to learn that there are situations where high carbs lead to higher performance. For those who lift weights only, adding endurance/cardio may contribute to greater longevity. Varying one’s nutritional intake and types of...


Healing the Gut & Autoimmune Symptoms with the Elemental Diet

Juan was facing an autoimmune arthritis condition, gut issues, and infertility. After trying a prescription drug that made him feel worse, he turned to healing his gut and mixed fasting with the elemental diet. In taking these steps, Juan was able to eliminate his symptoms—like joint pain, fatigue, and inflammation—and his wife became pregnant. The elemental diet is a liquid diet in which the contents are broken down into essential elements that can be quickly absorbed by the gut. Elemental...


The Autoimmune Paleo Diet for Hashimoto's Thyroiditis

The autoimmune paleo (or AIP) diet and community support together can benefit patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, according to a landmark study. AIP removes nightshades, eggs, nuts, seeds, ghee, and caffeine, in addition to standard paleo restrictions. The study’s community support (which included online health coaching) contributed to 90-100% adherence to this diet. Interestingly, multiple participants improved symptomatically and/or were able to reduce thyroid medication, while their...


Are low carb or keto diets bad for your gut health?

Some articles circulate online claiming that low-carb or ketogenic diets starve your gut bacteria and are thus unhealthy. But these diets are not bad for your gut health. The claims are misleading: while they may starve some bacterial populations, they may promote the growth of others. These diets may not work for everyone. If you feel fatigued or irritable on a low-carb or keto diet, a moderate to higher-carb diet might be more ideal for your body. A diet low in fermentable carbs (called...


Best & Worst Gut Function Tests, with Dr. Ilana Gurevich

A GI functional marker test, or test of gut function, can be very useful to detect some gut conditions. It can help diagnose inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), predict pancreatic insufficiency (or need for digestive enzymes), and potentially detect leaky gut. However, patients should beware of paying attention to markers like secretory IgA, fecal lysozyme, chymotrypsin and beta-glucuronidase that are problematic or unvalidated. Also—because lab testing processes vary and markers can be...


Have Brain Fog & Depression? Leaky Gut Could Be to Blame.

Leaky gut syndrome—also known as increased intestinal permeability—is a state in which the intestinal lining becomes damaged. This allows toxins, bacteria, and foreign particles to leak into the bloodstream. Robust research shows links between leaky gut (and other gut issues) and brain-based issues like cognition and mood. For example, intestinal infection was associated with later onset of anxiety. In other research, elevated zonulin (a marker of leaky gut) was correlated with higher...


Meditation: Why It’s Healthy & How to Get Started

Neuroscience research has revealed and continues to show the wide-ranging health benefits of meditation. These benefits range from lower inflammation in the body to emotional resilience to increased compassion. A small investment of time daily, just 10-20 minutes, can yield many returns on effectiveness in multiple areas of one’s life. But it can sometimes be challenging for beginners to figure out what to do or what the process even looks like. Researcher and meditation teacher Ashok Gupta...


Cannabis Can Enhance Sexual Function and Connectivity

Medicinal cannabis has been studied and administered for health benefits like chronic pain reduction and chemotherapy-induced nausea. Compelling—while currently more limited—evidence shows that a small, controlled dose of cannabis can also improve sexual function in the four main domains: libido, arousal, orgasm, and bonding. The optimal medium to use is cannabis flower (to avoid harmful byproducts and have predictable effects) with a vaporizer that has proper temperature regulation and dose...


How To Identify and Treat CIRS and Mold Illness

Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) is an inflammatory response in the body that may affect multiple systems—like digestive, respiratory, nervous, musculoskeletal, pulmonary—and is generally brought on by environmental exposure or infection. The most common trigger for CIRS is mold and mycotoxins from buildings with water damage. If you see health changes after a water leak, moving to a new residence (or office), or even after a brief exposure like a hotel stay, consider mold and...


Long-Term Study Links Pesticide Exposure to Hypothyroidism

A large, 20-year study of farmers shows associations between exposure to certain pesticides and herbicides and an increased risk of hypothyroidism. Many of these chemicals are still in use. Note that the study measured occupational use, or very high exposure. Another study which measured pesticide levels in the blood—after participants ate organic versus conventional food—showed higher levels of pesticides in the blood of those who ate conventional food. Eating organic food whenever possible...


Answers on SIBO, Elemental Diet, Thyroid & More

Today we will cover listener questions, including: Elemental Heal for Ulcers; Inulin Intolerance; Keto Diet and Thyroid; H. Pylori False Positives; Red Light Therapy for The Gut; Biofilms and the Elemental Diet. https://drruscio.com/?p=31375 My book Healthy Gut, Healthy You is available at https://drruscio.com/getgutbook/ Looking for more? Check out https://drruscio.com/resources


Selecting the Best Diet For Autism (And Other Chronic Conditions)

In this episode Julie and I discuss diet protocols and a cascade approach that often helps practitioners and patients identify the best possible diet for healing. The protocols we discuss, like starting with a gluten/dairy/soy free diet and cascading to other diets like low histamine, low FODMAP, low salicylate diet and low oxalate diet are not limited to Autism treatment, this approach can be used for many different chronic diseases. https://drruscio.com/?p=31373 My book Healthy Gut,...


How Psychedelics Might Change the Course of Healing

Sometimes, looking at difficult health issues holistically and asking good questions can uncover surprising paths to wellness. Jason Prall of the Human Longevity Project docu-series focused his career on lifestyle medicine after working to help many patients with complex issues. In additional to health practices like exercise and sun exposure, he has also seen powerful healing effects from psychedelics on the nervous system, both personally and in others. One high-impact activity you can...


Brain Fog, Fatigue, Female Hormone Issues & Bloating GONE

The cost of care, especially in the realm of functional medicine, can be an unknown for a suffering layperson. It may feel to weary patients like their only option is to sign away many thousands of dollars. Julie’s story shows that this does not need to be the case. After her general practitioner was not able to treat her myriad symptoms—including brain fog, fatigue, female hormone issues, bloating, and loose stools—Julie turned to functional medicine. The first functional medicine doctor...


Why Boredom is a Healthy Pursuit

Our society provides more stimulus and entertainment than ever before, from streaming video to mobile devices. Parents are often discouraged from letting their children wander off or attempt things unsupervised. And most people think of boredom as a negative feeling to be avoided. But could there be a value to boredom? Dr. Mark Hawkins, a high school counselor, thinks so. Cultivating a practice of boredom, or leaving space to do nothing, can lead to facing and resolving one’s negative...


One Key Reason Why Your Thyroid Hormone Is Not Working

If you are still experiencing symptoms of hypothyroidism despite taking a thyroid hormone, a recent study shows promise. The study showed that two-thirds of women with the above condition, who brought their ferritin levels (or functional iron in their blood) above 100, saw their persistent symptoms relieved. Consider testing your ferritin and supplementing it before adding on another medication. Interestingly, 100 is not a cutoff for healthy iron levels in most blood tests, so make sure to...


How to Become Happier and More Appreciative

Stoic philosophy is an ancient life philosophy, originating in Rome and Greece, that may help you face challenges more effectively and with greater tranquility. One technique involves briefly visualizing the loss of someone or something precious, restoring gratitude for and awareness of that element of life. Another method is to review and analyze the surfacing of negative emotion to hopefully prevent it in the future. The practice of Stoic philosophy provides a balance to modern goals of...


You Live Longer If You Have Healthy Relationships

The influence of social relationships on health and happiness is a popular topic of research. A healthy marital relationship can yield numerous benefits, including better sleep and greater longevity. But marital stress can be detrimental to couples’ immune systems. Stress in a relationship (or even loss) can be buffered by other friendships, by gratitude, by time apart, and by setting realistic expectations. Commitment from your social connections can also bolster health. When considering...


Your Questions on Supplements, Probiotics, Elemental Diet

Today we will cover listener questions, including: Magnesium while fasting; Is the elemental diet and fasting okay if you are underweight?; Probiotics; Is the inulin in the probiotic okay?; Noticing white tongue while on the elemental diet; Dosing for NAC; and more. https://drruscio.com/?p=30674 My book Healthy Gut, Healthy You is available at https://drruscio.com/getgutbook/ Looking for more? Check out https://drruscio.com/resources


Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) & Tick-Borne Illness

Three main types of symptoms typically occur in mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS): allergic, inflammatory, and growth abnormality symptoms, which can affect different organs in the body. Lyme disease, Bartonella, and other tick-borne (and insect/animal-transmitted) illnesses can influence, trigger, or mimic the symptoms of MCAS. It’s important to consider that these conditions may or may not overlap. Lab testing can help identify inflammation markers or specific infections. Treatments,...