[b]medical spa 

  be fit. be beautiful. be well.


view:  full / summary

Weight Loss and Supplements

Posted on March 27, 2014 at 3:15 PM Comments comments (0)

     Spring has arrived and summer is right around the corner.  Summer brings lighter clothes, shorts, swim suits, fewer and tighter clothes and time at the beach.  Many people begin to think of weight loss and physical activity as ways to prepare for the summer months - to look and feel your best.

     There are a variety of weight loss programs available, many that offer supplements to provide energy, curb appetite and assist in the weight loss proces.  At [b] medical spa, we strive to help our clients and others to be fit and be well.  We provide and endorse only those products and services that we have tried ourselves.  In an attempt to introduce a "be fit" component to the medical spa, we are looking at weight loss programs and their supplements.  

     This week I started a weight loss program, a bootcamp approach that is designed to make the customer have a lot of energy and at the same time rid the body of unwanted toxins.  The sales person said that the program is safe, the supplement ingredients are all "natural" there are no chemicals or toxins in any of the supplements.  The bootcamp rules include no coffee, caffeine of any kind, and no wine or other alcoholic beverages. These supplements, along with a modified vegan diet sounded like a plan for success. I started the program on Monday and prepared myself for caffeine withdrawal headaches.  I had more energy.  I felt like I could run a six minute mile.  By Tuesday, my heart felt like it was trying to race.  Because I am on a prescription beta blocker drug my heart cannot race, but I had chest pressure, some shortness of breath, and did not feel well. My blood pressure and heart rate were both elevated.  Oh oh - what was I consuming that was causing these symptoms?

     I stopped all of the supplements. I am a trained researcher, a nurse practitioner with many years of experience.  I started the program without looking into the ingredients in the supplements. Natural sounded safe to me. How foolish was that?  I started looking at the ingredients in the supplements.  I never developed a caffeine withdrawal headache - why not?  My heart was racing - what caused that?  I started looking at the ingredients.  The product incorporated a variety of proprietary blends of ingredients, including Guaranan (Pauline cupana, 22% caffeine) and a variety of other unpronouncable contents. 

     I looked up Guarana and Paulina cupana.  Paulina cupana is a substance derived from Guarana.  I presumed that the 22% caffeine was the amount of caffeine in the total 410 mg of the booster part of the product.  That amount of caffeine is equivalent to a cup of espresso coffee. Guarana is a stimulant.  It stimulates the central nervous system (CNS), the heart and muscles.  It contains theophylline, a drug that is used in the treatment of asthma.  It is rarely used any more as better drugs with safer side effect profiles have been developed.  Side effects of theophylline include racing heart, tremors, irritability and more.  Another chemical in Guarana is Theobromine. It is a chemical similar to caffeine.  Yes, these products are chemicals, yes they are stimulants, and not necessarily safe. 

     So what's the big deal with these supplements?  Many of the ingredients in supplements include plants that prescription medications are derived from.  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate supplements or the companies that make them.  Supplements are rarely tested in controlled research studies.  The supplements may be safe for some people, but not for all people.  How do you know which supplements are helpful or harmful? Can the supplements cause health problems that will become apparent in the future?  Will the chemicals in the supplements interact with other medications that a person is taking?  Of course they can.  Just because the products are sold over-the-counter does not ensure safety. The same can be said for protein drinks.  What is in protein drinks? Who is regulating them?  The answer is no one.

     The key to weight loss has not changed. If the number of calories consumed is less than the calories needed by the body, when you accumulate a deficit of 3,500 calories, you will lose one pound. Decease intake by planning healthy meals.  Avoid fast food and junk food.  Eat healthy snacks.  Exercise to increase the number of calories used by the body. And most important, look at the labels on every food or supplement product.  If you don't know an ingedient, look it up. There is no easy way to weight loss. The silver bullit does not exist. You must develop a lifestyle of healthy eating and exercise that will not only ensure weight loss, but a lifetime of healthy living.




micro needling

Posted on November 8, 2013 at 1:45 AM Comments comments (0)

 What is Micro-­‐Needling and how does it work? Micro-­‐Needling is a procedure where an Eclipse Micropen is passed over an area of skin; the pen has a disposable tip with twelve sharp needles which penetrate through the dermal into the underlying skin. This procedure does not remove the top layer of skin but forms a controlled injury to the skin. This initiates the skin’s natural wound healing process which works to replenish collagen and elastin fibres which may have been rendered ineffective as a result of aging or injury to the skin. as forming new blood capillaries. This new growth results in the formation of thicker and plumper skin which ultimately reduces the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, scars and other prominent texture changes. What is Micro-­‐Needling used to treat? This procedure increases the thickness of the dermal layer of skin as well as the epidermis which improves the skins texture and as a result limits the appearance of many skin defects. For example: • Irregular pigment (hypopigmentation or hyperpigmentation) or colour in the skin. • Sun damaged areas of skin. • Scars-­‐ it is particularly effective at treating acne scars it can be used to elevate the depressed scar tissue due to new blood capillary formation. • Wrinkling and fine lines • Stretch marks How long does it take to work? Depending upon the needle length used and your skin’s response to treatment, results can vary. Immediately after treatment, you will experience erythema and mild swelling which will subside after approximately 1-­‐2 days. Within the first week, you may experience a natural exfoliation or dryness. After 1 week you may notice your skin’s texture and tone has improved. Pigmented areas may show improvement from the 3rd week post treatment. From 6 weeks onwards you may experience a visible improvement in fine lines and wrinkles. Are there any complications associated with Micro-­‐Needling? As with any procedure Micro-­‐Needling carries some degree of risk, it is important that you analyse the risk compared to potential benefits before you undertake any procedure. Some potential complications could be: • Patching, flaking or dryness-­‐ can persist for a few days after treatment • Pin-­‐point bleeding-­‐ there will be some slight bleeding caused by the needle penetrating the skin. BCDG Version 1.0 Feb 2013 • Scab formation-­‐ it is very rare that you might form scabs in the area of treatment, if this is the case, avoid picking at them as this may cause scarring, • Infection-­‐The tiny channels caused by the needle usually close within minutes, there is a very small risk of infection, but provided you are in a sterile and clinical environment, this risk is extremely rare. • Pigment changes-­‐ Some patients very rarely experience hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin) in the treated area • Pain-­‐ a numbing cream will usually be used on the treatment area prior to use, this should prevent you from feeling any pain, but you may experience some tingling or pressure sensations. On particularly sensitive areas a general anaesthetic may be used to manage pain. • Viral infection-­‐ if you suffer from cold sores you may have a flare up subsequent to treatment. Before you have this treatment, tell your doctor if you do and they may prescribe an appropriate antiviral medication. What should I do after the treatment? Your doctor will provide you with post treatment advice which will be relevant to the treatment you have received, depending upon the size of the needle and the area you are treating. You may be recommended to: • Avoid touching the treated area and ensure your hands are always clean if you do. This should help to avoid infection. • Do not apply make up until 12 hours post treatment. • Avoid having a chemical peel, facial rub or massage for at least 24 hours after treatment. • Use warm water to gently cleanse the face and pat dry for up to 48 hours post treatment. Is this treatment right for me? You might not be a good candidate for Micro-­‐Needling if: • You have current open wounds, cuts or abrasions on the area of skin being treated • Are pregnant or breast-­‐feeding • You have an allergy to local anaesthetic • Have a history of keloid or hypertrophic scar formation or poor wound healing • Have a current infection in the area that you are or are not undertaking current treatment. • Are on any medication which might alter the way your blood clots e.g. aspirin, warfarin. Let your doctor know of any current medication you are taking or any previous relevant medical history. It is also important that you discuss with your doctor what you intend for the results to be and that you have both analysed realistic outcomes for the treatment.