2017 Annual Conference Course Descriptions

Botanicals Boot Camp: A Clinician’s Primer

This full-day foundational course will provide clinicians (especially those who have not been through formal herbal medicine training) with a practical framework for counseling patients regarding the safe and effective use of botanicals. This will be a “hands-on” course, incorporating patient cases to allow clinicians to work through real world scenarios that take into account different botanicals and botanical actions, the potential for herb-drug interactions, “dosing” by age and constitution, the use of herbal formulations, and more. Cases (adult and pediatric) will focus on botanicals used in mental, women’s, and digestive health. Learn to discern different aspects of botanical product labels in order to more effectively counsel patients. Better understand the legal and ethical implications of selling botanical products in your medical office.

The Role of Adaptogens and Nervines in Clinical Practice

The majority of physician’s office visits are due to stress-related symptoms of diseases. A significant number of these patients are taking medications to manage their stress, including anti-depressants and anxiolytics. This presentation will give an overview of the HPA- axis and the related hormones and neurotransmitters. It will review the research on various types of depression and symptoms, and medications, nutrients and botanical medicines used to alleviate symptoms.

Sub Laboratory Hypothyroidism

Recent research has demonstrated that much more regulation of the thyroid system occurs in the periphery than previously thought. The hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis is responsible for maintaining an appropriate level of thyroid hormones that the cells can use to provide for normal metabolism. Just as vital, recent research has uncovered thyroid signaling pathways that regulate the thyroid system on a cellular level. The ubiquitin proteasome system controls the level of deiodinase enzyme, thereby determining T4 to T3 conversion. All this crucial intracellular activity is not measured by thyroid blood tests. This might explain why some people have low body temperatures and symptoms of low thyroid function that may warrant the empirical use of T3.

Thyroid Autoimmune Disease

Primary care physicians now diagnose thyroid disease routinely, frequently with an autoimmune component. Thyroid complaints include fatigue, weight gain and depression, even despite normal hormone protocols. In this talk, Dr. Friedman will review nutritional deficiencies and excesses which can contribute to hypothyroidism as well as treatment considerations and lifestyle measures. This class offers botanical and nutritional protocols that doctors can consider when treating symptomatic thyroid patients with Graves and Hashimoto’s Disease.

A Restorative Medicine Approach to Modify Disease Progression of Multiple Sclerosis

MS is a chronic autoimmune, inflammatory, neurological disease of the central nervous system (CNS). It causes progressive scars in the brain and spinal cord. Underlying causes include autoimmunity, neuro-inflammation, and neurodegeneration. The disease course can be asymptomatic, progressive, relapsing-remitting, and acute. This course will review the current pharmacologic recommendations and their effectiveness. It will also present evidence supporting natural treatments, including research pertaining to phytomedicines such as curcumin, rosmarinic acid, resveratrol, and nutrients.

Prevention and Treatment of the Aging Brain

This presentation begins with an overview of the brain and its function. A discussion of the aging population with statistics follows, continued with a review of dementia, its various forms, and impact on health. Environmental factors contributing to neurotoxicity are presented, as well as other important factors. How to assess patients age 65 and older, and what appropriate tests to order are reviewed. What measures are needed to prevent the brain from aging and what can be done to reverse cognitive decline are discussed with studies from the medical literature with emphasis on the use of probiotics for both prevention and treatment.

Depression Biotypes and Advanced Nutrient Therapy

Depression is an umbrella term used to describe a collection of disorders with quite different symptoms, traits, and neurotransmission abnormalities. Evaluation of 2,800 patients diagnosed with clinical depression has resulted in a database of approximately 300,000 blood and urine chemistry levels and 200,000 medical history factors. Five major depression biotypes representing about 95% of our patient population were identified. Each biotype presented with a similar cluster of depressive characteristics, biochemical imbalances, nutritional deficiencies or symptoms. The nutrient imbalances that dominate mental disorders will be described based on a thorough review of published research as they relate to each biotype. The epigenetic impacts of folates, methionine, acetyl-CoQ10, and other nutrients on brain neurotransmission will be described. Special attention will be given to research conducted on gene expression of transport proteins that regulate reuptake of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. Specific nutrient protocols will be summarized for the major imbalances and biotypes.

Identifying the Role of Neuroimmunomodulation in Clinical Conditions, Part 1

Neuroimmunomodulation is a rapidly expanding area of research, investigating the way in which the nervous system interacts with the immune system via neural, hormonal, and paracrine actions. This presentation will review the most up-to-date research which establishes these connections and explores which systems initiate and which are responders. We will review biological responses to emotions, such as chronic stress. This presentation will review evidence based models of the role of the GI microbiota and how inflammation plays a role.

The Retina: A Sensitive Barometer of Health and Nutrition

The neurosensory retina is a thin diaphanous structure, no thicker than tissue paper attached to the inner wall of the back of the eye. It is the photographic film of the eye and is a laminated integrated circuit that subserves all aspects of visual perception including high resolution central acuity, motion detection, edge identification, contrast sensitivity, color identification and peripheral vision. It has at least nine identifiable structural layers with at least 15 different cell types that carry out important metabolic functions. The maintenance of the structural and functional integrity of this highly organized tissue demands significant biological energy.

There are two major light absorbing photoreceptor cells in humans. The rod cells mediate peripheral and dim light vision and contain the visual pigment protein rhodopsin. These photoreceptors are found in largest numbers in the peripheral retina but their highest density is in a circumferential distribution around the macula- the central region of the retina. The cone cells are important for color vision and high acuity central vision and are found predominantly in the macula. Not surprisingly, the retina is the most metabolically active tissue in the body per unit weight and the eye has the largest blood supply per unit weight in the human body.

Thus, it serves as an excellent organ system to discuss and demonstrate energy metabolism, homeostasis, nutritional modulation and endogeneous stem cell activity of disease states as well as canonical pathogenetic events (e.g. inflammation, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, immune dysregulation) that lie central to so many chronic diseases. A review of the research will provide evidence for the above listed activities.

Neuroinflammation in Autism and its Resemblance to Adult Neurodegenerative Disease Progression

The rates of autism have increased over the years where 1 in 68 children in the US are diagnosed with this disease (CDC, 2016). Autism has a psychiatric diagnosis based on specific behavioral symptoms. Evidence is showing that the manifestations of autism arise from chronic systemic and neuroinflammation. Encephalitis is inflammation of the brain and the word causes fear for practitioners. Yet we have more and more children being diagnosed with autism with neuroinflammation in their brain. We have children with a form of encephalitis and we are labeling them with psychiatric illness. Understanding this connection is critical for us to be able to diagnose and treat children with autism. The pathology of neuroinflammation in chronic degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s is similar to the pathology in those children studied with autism. If we have children with degenerative neurological disease, we have serious issues as these children grow into adulthood. We will discuss the similarity of neuropathology between autism and adult neurodegenerative diseases and the implication of this information.

This session has no CME credits, only CE credits.

The Brain and Wellbeing: Addressing Inflammation with Neuorendocrine Corrections

Neurological Fitness is an area that is rapidly evolving. Inflammation is recognized as the underlying basis of a vast number of conditions and diseases. The neurological impact is profound. The integral relationship between the HPA axis (adrenal) and inflammation is direct. Utilizing markers which assesses the allostatic load on the system, and brings treatment recommendations into focus is invaluable for the functional medicine Practitioner.

Functional Medicine Practitioners are at the cutting edge of ushering in a new standard of health and well-being and this includes strategies for addressing neurological conditions and disease. Over 40% of the US population will be older than 60 years of age by 2020! Over the next 40 years we’re facing an epidemic of neurologic and neurodegenerative diseases on a global scale. This boom in our aging population will continue for another 17 years!

By the year 2008, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics reported that Alzheimer’s disease had surpassed diabetes as the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. A test as simple as the salivary adrenal/HPA axis panel reveals that we can identify early stages of dementia prior to the onset of actual dementia diagnosis and Alzheimer’s.

Learn about accurate assessment of these inflammatory and neuroendocrine markers which will define treatment and prevention. Understand which hormones are neuroprotective (Estradiol, Progesterone etc.), and which ones can have a negative impact on brain health and aging (stress hormones; glucocorticoids). Learn about the most common neurodegenerative diseases in light of neurotransmitter levels, hormone levels and HPA Axis dysfunction. Discover how to optimize and physiologically balance of all of these parameters. Obtain treatment plans which you can use Monday morning.

The Psycho-Neuro-Endocrine-Immunology System (PNEI) of Postpartum Mood Disorder

It is estimated that close to one million American women suffer from postpartum depression annually. Many suffer in silence, feeling guilty and isolated because of their negative emotions and the social pressure making them feel like they “should” be happy. Women who seek care from conventional medicine are generally given anti-depressant medications and birth control pills. This approach may alleviate symptoms temporarily, however it masks the symptoms without finding and removing the cause. Shockingly, many women never feel the same after childbirth, even 10-20 years later! This presentation offers a natural, practical and safe program written and researched by a board certified and licensed naturopathic physician.

Lion's Mane for Treating Cognitive Decline

In the US, mortality rates from Alzheimer’s disease have steadily and significantly increased over the past 30 years. Despite this alarming progression, pharmaceutical research has yet to identify a drug which effectively halts this crippling disease. An evidenced-based review of Hericium erinaceus, also known as lion’s mane because of its physical features, demonstrates its unique potential to modify the progression of Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

Based on current research, lion’s mane appears to have synaptoblastic properties, which emerging theories consider to be a key action for inhibiting AD pathogenesis. The basic sciences and clinical research demonstrate lion’s mane activity is multifaceted and addresses many of the degenerative processes which ultimately contribute to AD progression. It is shown to enhance cognitive function and the central cholinergic system through promoting nerve growth factor and hippocampal neurogenesis, potentially contributing to improved memory. It has positive influences on preventing impairments induced by amyloid beta (Ab), as well as attenuation of cerebral Aβ plaque burden. Its antioxidant activities suppress intracellular reactive oxygen species accumulation, through upregulation of protective molecular species such as HSP70, heme oxygenase-1, thioredoxin and Lipoxin A4, potentially minimizing the deleterious consequences of neurodegeneration.

This presentation will also translate lion’s mane research to its clinical applications for cognitive support. While it is recommended to use a broad- reaching program which modifies lifestyle factors and nutrients to treat or prevent AD, lion’s mane should be considered an essential component in any AD protocol.

Botanical Medicines For Regulating Thyroid Function

This session will present current research on botanical medicines aimed at regulating thyroid function. Agents that improve hypothyroid function by increasing iodine uptake and synthesize thyroid hormones will be reviewed, along with agents known to block excessive stimulation of the thyroid in cases of excessive TSH production, or thyroid auto-antibodies. Nutritional and botanical evidence based protocols for a variety of common thyroid conditions seen in clinical practice will be shared. Lastly, synergism between the adrenal and the thyroid gland, and the “cross talk” between all the endocrine organs will be addressed as an important aspect of treating thyroid diseases.

Guided Botanical Medicine Walk

Join Donna Chesner as she guides you through the Sonoran desert to identify medicinal plants. You’ll appreciate how hardy plants are able to survive this landscape, such as snakeroot, aloe, sagebrush, creosote bush, prickly poppy, yellow bells and plants from the euphorbiaceae family. Enjoy the sunshine and learn how to identify plants, review their actions and clinical applications. This walk will take place at the Tohono Chul Botanical Park, about a 15-minute drive from the Westin La Paloma. We will gather in the hotel lobby Sunday about 2 p.m. and then carpool to the park (some participants may need to share taxis/Uber). Admission cost to the park is $13 per person. If you wish to participate, please email conferences@restorativemedicine.org. Group size will be limited to 15.

Donna Chesner has a M.Sc. in Plant Sciences from the University of Arizona. She has been a plant molecular biology researcher in both industrial and university laboratories. While her husband Michael Moore served as director and primary instructor of the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine, she acted as administrator and teacher at the school, from 1991 to 2006. She is an herbalist in private practice, is currently involved in establishing a native medicinal plant garden in Tucson, and has given medicinal plant walks in various localities in the Southwest.

Identifying the Role of Neuroimmunomodulation in Clinical Conditions, Part 2

Neuroimmunomodulation is a rapidly expanding area of research, investigating the way in which the nervous system interacts with the immune system via neural, hormonal, and paracrine actions. This presentation will review the most up-to-date research which establishes these connections and explores which systems initiate and which are responders. We will review biological responses to emotions, such as chronic stress. This presentation will review evidence based models of the role of the GI microbiota and how inflammation plays a role.

Comprehensive, Integrative Approach to Neurodegenerative Conditions

Neurodegenerative disorder (ND) is an umbrella term for a range of conditions which primarily affect the neurons in the human brain, but can also affect the spinal cord and peripheral nerves. ND are thought to be incurable and debilitating conditions that result in progressive degeneration and/or death of nerve cells. Dr. Born will discuss how a thorough integrative approach can often slow down the progression of neuronal degeneration, as well as strengthen the central and peripheral nervous systems, decrease oxidative stress and optimize mitochondrial function.

This session has no CME credits, only CE credits.

Hormones, Organic Acids and Genetics: Clinical Synergy for Integrative Medicine

Laboratory testing is an important tool in Functional Medicine. Hormones and their metabolites have long been a staple of Functional Medicine practices. Organic acids and genetic testing have recently emerged as important tools to also be considered, especially in complex cases. These types of lab tests are useful when considered independently, but are more powerful when considered in context of each other and the clinical picture. For many cases, having more comprehensive testing makes proper diagnosis more probable. This lecture will discuss the integration of hormone, organic acid and genetic tests, specifically as they relates to estrogen metabolism and cancer prevention.

This session has no CME credits, only CE credits.

Dosing of Triiodothyronine (T3)

A simple protocol for the empirical use of T3 in patients with low body temperatures and normal thyroid blood tests will be presented. Crucial principles of dosing and management that are specific to T3 therapy be discussed and will focus on maximizing the benefit while minimizing the risk of T3 therapy. Doctors will learn how cycling patients on and off T3 can often reset the body temperature so that the temperature and symptoms often remained improved off medicine. This “resetting phenomenon” is a hallmark of T3 therapy for Wilson’s Syndrome. Transitioning patients from T4-containing medicine to T3 will also be discussed.

This session has no CME credits, only CE credits.

Mitochondrial Dysfunction as the Root Cause of Hormonal Imbalance and Chronic Disease

In this presentation, Dr. Salter will investigate if mitochondrial dysfunction is the common denominator in chronic disease and hormone imbalance. She will establish that the health of the microbiome is intimately connected with mitochondrial function. She will also review the science which implicates the main cause of mitochondrial dysfunction is cumulative toxin exposure from chemicals in personal care products, pharmaceutical drugs, pesticides, herbicides, mycotoxins, dental toxins, tobacco, heavy metals and excessive uv light exposure. This results in excessive oxidative stress, which then becomes a vicious cycle resulting in mitochondrial dysfunction and death (mitophagy). The key to restoring health to individuals with chronic disease is to identify predisposing factors causing mitochondrial dysfunction, identify and if possible, eliminate the source of toxin exposure, and increase the number (biogenesis) and function of mitochondria.

Herbal Preparations - Teas and Tinctures Workshop

While attending this "hands on" class, we will make and blend organic herbal preparations. We will extract essential plant properties through various menstrums: teas, tinctures, vinegars, and oils. The workshop will be led by Penelope Beaudrow, registered herbalist. Thanks to a generous donation from Faunus Herbs, each workshop participant will go home with a 100ml tincture and some loose tea blended in the workshop. This workshop is limited to 25 participants. Sorry, the workshop is full.

Healthy Children in the 21st Century: The Role of Preconception Counseling

Medical professionals benefit from enhanced training on counseling couples how to prepare for a healthy pregnancy to increase fertility and to improve the health of their forthcoming children. The fetal origins hypothesis posits the significant impact of the uterine environment on lifelong health and challenges us to help our patients be optimally healthy before they conceive. Often, patients are highly motivated at this life stage. In her presentation, Dr. Maizes will review the evidence for whole food dietary patterns, macronutrients and micronutrients, reducing exposure to environmental chemicals, mind body therapies, herbal therapies, acupuncture, and spiritual practices that improve fertility and the likelihood of conceiving a healthy child.

The Role of the Human Microbiome in Preventing Metabolic Endotoxemia

Metabolic Endotoxemia​ is​ the number one cause of mortality worldwide.This condition is caused by eating and a failure of the microbiome to protect its host from this response. You simply cannot​ ​completely correct any chronic condition without addressing Metabolic Endotoxemia.

You are more bacteria than you are human with 10 trillion human cells outnumbered by over 100 trillion bacteria cells in and on your body. The human genome contributes just 1% genetic material to daily metabolic function compared to the 99% that is contributed by the microbiome. An often-overlooked role of the microbiome is to prevent Metabolic Endotoxemia and the inflammatory devastation that follows. This lecture will illustrate the danger of having post-Metabolic Endotoxemia and ​address ​why this condition is being called the number one cause of mortality worldwide​,​ as it sets up the body for virtually every chronic disease.

This session has no CME or CE credits.

Using Body Intelligence to Treat Chronic Disease

What might it feel like for you and your patients to live a life your body loves? “We are born to be bodywise—able to listen to the messages of our body, both simple and deeply intuitive, to navigate our health and our life,” says Rachel Abrams. “Are you tired? In pain? Sometimes anxious or depressed? Struggling with low libido? Or just curious how you can live the vital, deeply connected life that you deserve? During this talk, Doctor Rachel will use multiple case histories to teach you and your patients how to be bodywise. We’ll learn how to listen to symptoms as our body’s communication to us, as clues that lead us to our particular path to healing. Body Intelligence + Integrative Medicine = the recipe for Spontaneous Healing.

Curcumin Bioavailability and Activity

Curcumin, a yellow polyphenol compound from the rhizome of turmeric (Curcuma longa) has gained wide favor for its anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and immune-modulatory actions. Early studies showing poor bioavailability of oral curcumin have prompted the development of a variety of strategies aimed at increasing bioavailability in humans. The myriad of actions attributed to curcumin can be understood from a biological standpoint, with specific actions attributable to curcumin’s direct binding to metal ions, enzymes, signaling cascade components, and cell surface receptors.

Mood, Fatigue, Insomnia: A New Model of Diagnosis and Treatment

Are we at the endpoint of potential success for pharmacological interventions for mood, insomnia, and fatigue issues? Should we be alarmed at the rate that children under 17 years of age are now routinely being prescribed benzodiazepines and antidepressants? In the old model of diagnostics, practitioners would run non-specific, non-individualized labs, and prescribe treatments almost blindly. In the more advanced model, physicians investigate the root cause to identify a specific diagnosis, and create an appropriate individualized treatment. Unfortunately, not enough physicians are adopting this effective model, leaving us wondering- why not?

The primary reason appears to be that following this model is too time consuming, difficult to understand and challenging to apply. But recently, a more simplified approach became available, with clear recovery algorithms.

In this presentation, Dr. Weiss will present an evidence-based, holistic model for diagnosing mood, fatigue and insomnia problems. He will offer providers aggressive, non-toxic, and research-based treatment options that will result in a lifelong sustainable recovery for their patients. The attendee will be able to rapidly and effectively apply this new model to their clinical settings.

Mitochondrial Testing: The Key to Preventing and Reversing Neurological and Cardiovascular Disorders?

Practitioners have been waiting to get to the diagnosis and treatment of core genetic and genomic issues since the beginning of lab diagnostics. Methylation technologies were a great start, but it quickly became clear that more advanced testing was necessary. From that evolved new evidence-based testing methods for mitochondrial function and genetic analysis.

In this seminar, Dr. Weiss will present new mitochondrial DNA testing options and will analyze how they can be applied to treating patients with neurologic and cardiovascular disease. The ability to correct overall mitochondrial dysfunction may serve to improve recovery rates and put more cures for serious illnesses within our grasp. Applying these tests to conditions like Parkinson’s, ALS, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease will enhance diagnoses. At the end of the seminar, practitioners should be able to incorporate appropriate mitochondrial testing into their practices.