Food Sensitivities – Do You Have Them?

I must admit…..I am enamored with FOOD!


Not just eating it, but the fact that within all food is the treasure of LIFE and HEALTH!

That’s exactly the way God intended it, from the beginning. He decided in all of His Deity and goodness, that he would place in food all the information that every cell in our bodies would need to function optimally. He knew that if the heart cells functioned optimally, then the heart would function optimally. He didn’t create a food whose primary purpose was to cause diabetes, inflammation, high cholesterol or acid reflux. He created foods that would provide everything we would need for health!

Genesis 1:29-30 states, 29 Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. 30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.”

Socrates concurred with God when he said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food”. What a smart man.

Now we know that nutrients in our food have to pass through 1000’s of square feet of intestinal tract, be broken down and absorbed so that the chemical messages would end up in the right cells and their organs. And within this GI tract are billions of microorganisms that act as barriers to protect us, create important micronutrients and are a huge part (70%) of our immune system!

But somewhere along the line, we lost the importance of that and decided that man made chemicals worked better and were necessary to keep us healthy.


I’m still not sure why God used the image of something as healthy as an apple, to be instrumental in the fall of mankind….but that’s for another book!

Suffice it to say that when Eve bit that apple, a lot of things started going wrong in our GI tract and in our bodies. And unfortunately over time man determined that all of the wonderful food that God intended us to eat would become tainted with pesticides and modified at its genetic level. As a result we are facing catastrophic health situations caused by:

  • enzyme deficiency
  • microbial imbalance
  • motility issues
  • detoxification abnormalities
  • intestinal permeability
  • inflammation

Interestingly, food intolerance or sensitivities can contribute to every single one of these problems, either directly or indirectly.  Indeed, a growing body of evidence shows that food allergies, or more accurately food sensitivities, can harm numerous other body systems and cause a wide range of unwanted symptoms.

For example, food sensitivities/reactions and other gastrointestinal disturbances have been linked to:

  • asthma and allergies
  • autoimmune disorders (lupus, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis,Chrohn’s, ulcerative colitis, fibroids, endometriosis, hair loss)
  • skin conditions (eczema, psoriasis)
  • arthritis
  • atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular diseases
  • neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia
  • mood disorders
  • narcolepsy
  • addiction
  • migraines
  • kidney problems
  • GERD, reflux

Wow, that’s a LONG list!  And, with more research, the list grows.  In fact, because of the number of conditions now associated with  either gut dysfunction or food sensitivities, anyone who feels like their GI system is working sub-optimally should at least consider trying a dietary approach known as an elimination diet.

Honestly, there are many ways to treat GI-related health conditions.  But the first, easiest, and most effective place to start is by eliminating or removing foods that might be causing a problem.


It is an approach that allows you to determine if food sensitivities are contributing to your “dis-ease”….your fatigue, foggy thinking, indigestion, pain, obesity, thyroid disease, GI-related complaints and everything listed above. And I can tell you, that is many of you! And it doesn’t cost you a dime….just your time and effort. It benefits everyone who does it in my experience; for many who have been to doctor after doctor, it will feel like a miracle! You take control of your own wellness when you do an elimination diet.

So what is it?  You eliminate certain foods for a period of time, usually three or four weeks, then slowly reintroduce specific foods and monitor your symptoms for possible reactions.

While I can recommend food allergy testing, what I find is that some people with “normal” results (i.e. no food sensitivity identified) still have symptoms suggestive of food sensitivity. And by doing the elimination diet and tracking symptoms, you gain a more powerful incentive to make dietary changes…..for life!

I think you know where I’m going with this…..a  good elimination diet will remove wheat gluten, dairy, soy, eggs, corn TO START WITH.  That might sound like a lot, but it leaves plenty of options for a relatively satisfying diet comprised primarily of rice, meat (i.e. turkey, fish, lamb), most fruit, and most types of vegetables.

Step 1: Start a journal to record what you are currently eating on most days; be completely honest. Do this for 1 week and send it to me at I’ll help you determine what you should begin to eliminate first.


Dr. Rita





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Get Your Groove Back!

Now that I’ve explained what I do and described the Core Clinical Imbalances, let’s talk about my favorite imbalance to identify and support: HORMONES!

Optimizing this area gives the most PROFOUND results in a short period of time,than any other. When  we measure and improve your hormone levels, YOU WILL GET YOUR GROOVE BACK! For some of you that could mean a really great sexual intimacy “groove” with your spouse and for some it is regaining your energy, focus, motivation, contentment “groove”.  Whatever your groove, this is crucial for your vitality and longevity. Oh, and did I mention it is my favorite subject of all!

The very foundation for wellness and age management is a balanced hormone system. When your hormones are balanced, using PLANT BASED, BIO-IDENTICAL HORMONES, you are more apt to be physically FIT, feel and look totally FABULOUS and be that FOX you used to be, sizzling hot and attractive to your spouse. But what is this hormone system and what does it consist of? And what are hormones?

Hormone Basics – The Hormone Superhighway

Otherwise known as the ENDOCRINE SYSTEM, your hormone system consists of dozens of glands that secrete 20 or more messenger molecules or proteins called hormones. Hormones are powerful chemical messengers that are created in one part of the body and travel to another part of the body.  The word hormone comes from a Greek word to “urge on”, so hormones carry important messages urging organs and glands to make biochemical adjustments necessary for good health.  Think of the endocrine system and its hormones as the “information superhighway”.

Hormones have a wide range of actions in the human body. Although usually associated with sexual health, their range of importance is much more significant. Your body will not function properly without this constant communication between organs to ensure that homeostasis is maintained, as the body responds to changes in our internal and external environment. The endocrine system controls and coordinates the body’s work and interacts with the nervous system, reproductive system, kidney, gut, liver pancreas and fat. So an intact, balanced hormone system positively effects:

  • Growth and development
  • Reproduction
  • Body energy levels
  • Homeostasis (the balance of internal body systems)
  • Response to stress, injury

When hormones are produced in the endocrine glands, they are carried in the bloodstream to target cells, where they attach in a lock and key fashion to receptors on the surface of the cells. Once the hormone key is engaged in the lock, a cascade of biochemical reactions occur in the target cells that affect the function and activity of that cell. Now that’s the harmony.

Receptor sites function as sensor stations where these chemical messengers have their effect. For those literal thinkers, it’s like “molecular sex”! The ultimate result: information contained within your cells chromosome is expressed as your genetic potential. It’s how you think, how you live and how you move! The epitome of health.

Hormone health is not just for older people; its not just when you are menopausal or men, when your get up and go has gotten up and left! Hormone health is important at ALL ages. Young men and women can suffer from the effects of adrenal fatigue caused by stress; undiagnosed, subclinical thyroid function; decreasing hormone levels related to hormone disruptors in the environment and foods; contraceptive related alterations in the hormones. And many of you are suffering unnecessarily.

Let’s talk; go to WORK WITH ME to start the process of optimizing your health and hormones. Schedule a DISCOVERY CONSULTATION NOW!

It’s a NEW YEAR! Here’s to your EXTRAORDINARY health in 2018!

Rita C. Stanley, M.D.

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What Do You Do Dr. Stanley?

When I transitioned my practice from traditional primary care Internal Medicine to what it is now, my friends, family and acquaintances kept asking me, “now what do you do?”  I went through a phase of labeling myself as holistic, naturopathic, complementary and still they didn’t understand. Finally as I thought about what I wanted to bring to the lives of my clients, it struck me that what was important to me in this part of my career was helping people get to the root of what ailed them.  If I could do that, then relief from their malaise and dis-ease would be the expected outcome.  The bandaid approach to helping people by treating their symptoms JUST DOESN’T WORK in the long run.  So then I labeled myself as the “root doctor.”

Rather than a label, let me tell you what I do and why. But first let’s talk about this magnificent creation called the human body!

The human body is composed of 60-90 trillion cells, 78 organs and interconnected biochemical and physiologic systems that work together to produce what we feel and recognize as health and wellness. In other words your neurologic system composed of your brain cells, nerves and neurotransmitters work together with your cardiovascular system (heart, blood vessels, neurotransmitters) to produce a healthy pumping heart that sends blood to all parts of your body.  Your gastrointestinal system (esophagus, stomach, intestines), which by the way is made from the same tissue developmentally that your brain came from, requires healthy blood flow from the heart and input from the nerves to function correctly.  Those of you with irritable bowel know first hand the mind/body connection; your anxiety and nervousness sets into motion unpleasant and down right painful spasms that can bend your over!

Our current health care system seems to divide and divvy up the different parts of the body to specialist, who focus on one aspect of this incredible machine, to fix a symptom or problem that involves multiple body systems…no wonder it is so frustrating for many of you!


What I practice now is called functional medicine, a science based field of healthcare whose focus is PREVENTION of disease.  It looks for underlying causes of “dis-ease” rather than symptoms.  It is anchored in examination of CORE CLINICAL IMBALANCES that are the precursors or early signs of many of the diseases that are so plaguing this society. You know them, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and obesity to name a few.

Here are the principles of Functional Medicine:

  • The human body is an orchestrated network of interconnected systems
  • Each human is unique with biochemical individuality (genetic and environmental individuality)
  • Wellness is a balance between internal and external factors
  • The focus is on PATIENT CARE vs. “disease care”

Learn more about Core Clinical Imbalances in the next post!






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Core Clinical Imbalances: Identify and Correct

What are the Core Clinical Imbalances that can sabotage our health?

Remember I told you that your body is made up of interconnected systems? Well there are 6 major physiologic and biochemical systems in your body. When they function optimally, you hum along like a well-tuned machine. When any one or more of these systems become imbalanced, nothing may happen right away but left undetected and over time, signs & symptoms that we recognize as disease are almost inevitable. These imbalances can be present for years before the actual disease manifests.

But what if we were able to measure and detect PRECURSORS or early signs of disease months and years before the actual disease?  Well the good news is that we can!  Let’s talk about these core imbalances.

  • Hormones and Brain Neurotransmiters
  • Inflammatory Process
  • Digestive, absorptive and microbiological
  • Immune System
  • Detoxification and Biotransformation
  • Oxidation-reduction/ Mitochondrial Function .

Now here’s the important 1st step in getting to the root of the problem:  KNOWING WHAT TO LOOK FOR!

There are many ways to test for these imbalances but the challenge is knowing exactly what to ask your doctor to check and understanding enough to answer his or her question of why do you want them done?  Having trained and practiced in traditional medicine for 20 years, I have had my share of impatience with patients who came in knowledgeable about things I really didn’t know much about. I would try not to be irritated with them and brush them off but those patients who were persistent and clearly had done their homework usually got what they requested.  Now I actively encourage all patients to be an active, participative, informed member of their healthcare team. Come with questions written down and leave with copies of tests and other things that are done to you.  KEEP YOUR OWN HEALTH RECORD!

I utilize blood and saliva testing for the majority of my clients. Your provider may also use urine testing. We’ll talk in detail later about the pros and cons of both of these methods and when they should be used. For most people, your existing healthcare insurance will cover the cost of blood work given the correct ICD-10 codes and other information.  Many of the tests I order on my clients are not routinely done by your primary care provider, so even if you just had lab done, it is only partially helpful to me.

Saliva testing is an out of pocket costs but quite affordable. ALWAYS CHECK WITH YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY TO ASSURE THAT YOU ARE NOT LEFT WITH AN INFLATED BILL FOR BLOOD WORK.  I’ll also share with you a way to get complete blood testing done with a large, reputable lab for a fraction of the cost. You do not have to be wealthy or insured to get great wellness care!

Your Health History is extremely important including symptoms, current medical conditions, medications, family history and dietary/exercise regimen.

So, when people come to see me I look at them from a whole body point of view, listening to their symptoms, examining them in the context of their symptoms and family history; measuring important biomarkers with the intent of finding  early signs of imbalance that might predict or be precursors to disease. The beauty of Functional Medicine is that I can intervene at multiple levels to address imbalances and restore functionality. By improving balance in environmental input, lifestyle and physiological processes, HEALTH IS RESTORED!  This would include an individual plan for you with dietary adjustments, nutritional supplementation and if necessary, plant based (bio-identical) hormone treatment!

LIFE CHANGING STUFF HERE!  These simple principles and the courage to take charge of your wellness is transforming and gives great hope. AND IT IS AVAILABLE TO YOU, NOW!


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