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Longevity Medicine: How We Age

Gerontology is the scientific study of aging. It’s a relatively new field, pretty well dominated by research PhDs. Certainly it’s a science that was virtually nonexistent when I was in medical school, back when preventive medicine itself got little more than lip service. With the recent arrival of anti-aging medicine/longevity medicine, MDs started paying more […]

Longevity Medicine: The Earlier You Start, The Longer You’ll Live

Leading an orchestra in Anton Bruckner’s Fourth Symphony is a real workout for any conductor.  Tall and straight-backed, the very elegant Swedish Maestro Herbert Blomstedt stepped to the podium and led the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for the 66-minute piece. From memory, no score in front of him. He would repeat this performance for two more […]

Root Causes of Chronic Fatigue, Part 13: Multiple Chemical Sensitivity

Most often, even before patients realize they’ve developed multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), its very first manifestation is fatigue, the sense of feeling deeply tired all the time. MCS is yet another condition I learned nothing about during my internal medicine residency, and when I asked the then-chief of allergy at Northwestern about it, he dismissed […]

Jonathan Toews, Covid-19, and CIRS

Perhaps you’ve heard about the Chicago Blackhawks captain, his long illness, and the good news that he’s back on the ice. After saying in December that feeling drained and lethargic had kept him from playing, the three-time Stanley Cup Champion said last week that he had CIRS, chronic inflammatory response syndrome. Never heard of it? […]

Introducing Our New WholeHealth Supplement Plans

If you’re a WholeHealth Chicago patient, you’ve likely noticed that we review your list of nutritional supplements during each appointment. Conventional doctors ask what prescription meds you’re taking (and of course we do too), but virtually never solicit a list of supplements. Since our area of expertise lies precisely there, it’s important for us to […]

Is The Environment Making Us Fat(ter)?

Virtually every day, a patient offers a variation of this sentence: “I’m steadily gaining weight no matter what I do. I restrict my calories to good foods, I exercise regularly, and I get zero results. My thyroid tests are normal. What’s wrong with my body?” We know the US is a nation of the overweight […]

Get The Lead Out (And Other Toxic Metals Too)

In last week’s Health Tip we discussed the chemical swill accumulating in your body from a variety of sources, some obvious and some not. This week we’re looking at heavy metal toxicity. For those who were otherwise preoccupied that day in high school chemistry, the heavy metals are a group of especially dense metals or […]

The Chemical Swill Accumulating In Your Body

I was pleased with the election of Joe Biden, not least because we might end (and start reversing) the more than 100 pollution rollbacks that the Trump administration has initiated in favor of corporate polluters. However, I was genuinely disheartened to learn that his current EPA lackeys recently finalized a rule that will sabotage any […]

Causes of Brain Fog: How To Test and How To Treat

Last week we began a series on brain fog, a term used by patients to describe a situation in which they’re experiencing poor focus and concentration, memory problems, and/or an overall lack of mental clarity. There are medical conditions, covered below, associated with brain fog that your doctor can screen for using a few simple […]

I Feel So Inflamed!

Previously, I wrote about mold-related illness, yet another commonly overlooked diagnosis. It’s surprising how regularly mold issues fly under the radar of conventional physicians. When you consider how often homes and workplaces have a leaky roof, unless something smells moldy or we discover creeping black stains somewhere we often don’t think of mold. Moreover, because […]

Mold Toxicity: A Telemedicine Consultation

Most people who are ultimately diagnosed with chronic inflammation triggered by black mold have heard somewhere “mold can make you sick.” However, only a few make the connection between their years of ill health and the water damage in their basement or attic, behind their kitchen sink, in their car, or around the upstairs neighbor’s […]

Functional Telemedicine, Wherever You Are

All things considered, we’ve rather enjoyed our telemedicine interactions with patients. Doctoring this way also recently provided me with an Aha! moment. What I realized was that much of what we do as Functional Medicine specialists, both diagnosis and treatment, can be done online with you never leaving your home. Such a consultation would include […]

The Cleveland Clinic and WholeHealth Chicago

I know, I know. It’s presumptuous of me to mention Cleveland Clinic in  the same line, much less on the same page, as WholeHealth Chicago, though we do have significant attributes in common, as you’ll see today. This research article, which appeared last week on the JAMA website, links the two of us in ways […]

New Hope For Sinus Sufferers

When osteopath Dr. Rob Ivker moved to Colorado in the 1980s to set up his family practice, he had no idea that when he stepped off the plane he’d succumb to symptoms of chronic sinusitis that just wouldn’t go away: stuffy nose, thick mucus, pressure behind his cheekbones and above his eyebrows, dull aching headache, […]

I Feel So Inflamed!

And among other symptoms, indeed she was. Julia, a bright 40-something, had written “fatigue,” “pain,” “bad digestion,” and “brain fog” on her WholeHealth Chicago intake paperwork. She’d been ill for years and brought with her two binders full of medical info on herself. The thicker of these contained accumulated medical records, lab tests, imaging studies, […]

Making Sense of “Controversial” Diagnoses

I’m warning you in advance. You’re entering a minefield here, with explosive views among seemingly conservative health care professionals. At least wear a helmet. Protective eyewear wouldn’t hurt either. You wouldn’t think a slew of conditions you’ve heard about (including chronic Lyme disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, chronic Epstein-Barr, toxic mold syndrome, food sensitivities, intestinal […]

Functional Medicine 101 + Introducing Dr. Alaina Gemelas

Functional Medicine is without a doubt the fastest growing medical specialty of the 21st century. Public interest in it and public acceptance of it continues to please me. Every day I hear the sentence, “I made this appointment because I wanted a functional approach.” When I ask patients how they learned about it, the answer […]

Your Smartphone Is Stealing Your Brain

Spoiler alert: I don’t own a smartphone. Also, I’ve been reluctant to write a Health Tip on smartphones lest two of my least desirable characteristics–smugness and self-righteousness– surface. But now a very well-conducted research study on how smartphones lead to cognitive decline compels me to warn you that if you value your brain, use your […]

Treating Mold-Related Illness

Last week I wrote about mold-related illness, yet another commonly overlooked diagnosis. It’s surprising how regularly mold issues fly under the radar of conventional physicians. When you consider how often homes and workplaces have a leaky roof, unless something smells moldy or we discover creeping black stains somewhere we often don’t think of mold. Moreover, […]

Commonly Missed Diagnoses: Mold-Related Illness

If you believe you’re suffering some of the chronic symptoms caused by mold exposure, you’ve probably also heard the discouraging mantra, “We can’t find anything wrong with you—all your tests are normal.” You’ve told your doc that you’ve read about toxic mold. You point out that you’ve had some water damage, that some rooms smell […]