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Throughout Life Wellness is a Journey - From Birth to Death [E050]

Health starts from birth to death. it’s not a phase of life you experience or a diet that you go on. It’s a journey from day one until the end. Dr. Whitney Hamed, pediatric and prenatal specialist, shares the importance of why health starts in the womb and can set the tone for the rest of the baby’s life – all the seasons throughout life. In this episode, you will discover how to make sure your child is developing within the first 3 years of life as they hit their milestones all the way to puberty and beyond.

Table Of Contents

Throughout Life: An Introduction

Throughout Life: An Introduction
Photographer: Greg Rakozy | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: This is Dr. Bryan Joseph coming straight from The Wellness Connection show. It is very, very, very amazing to hear that we are up to episode number 50 and man, time flies. It tells us that the year has gone by fast and we as always appreciate all your feedback and your comments and the responses and your willingness to share.

We’re on a mission to try to help as many people get well and stay well as we possibly can, and the journey has been fun but it doesn’t happen without people like you helping and sharing with other people. So thank you for that. We continue to hope to bring as much value in the episodes to come as we can. So if there’s more that you want us to speak on or certain topics, please let us know. And I am joined for episode 50 by Dr. Whitney Hamed.

Whitney Hamed: Hello, everyone. Thanks for listening. And yes, this is exciting. Episode 50, we’ve got so much great information to share and I can’t wait for today.

Bryan Joseph: So there’s milestone episodes, like you always try to do your best in regards to episode 1, episode 25, maybe 50, maybe the hundredth one when we get there. These are big anniversaries that people have when they get married.

Wellness Is A Journey

Wellness Is A Journey
Photographer: Matt Howard | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: So today, it was a fun conversation that we started to have here prior to recording and I want to just bring this to you, but the concept of actually understanding that health starts from birth until death. And it’s not just a phase of life that you experience or a diet that you go on at some point. The journey of health must be looked upon as something from birth to death. So, Dr. Whitney works a lot with newborns and pregnant women and a lot of pediatric care.

And I thought it’d be great to bring her into this discussion and just really enlighten us a little bit in regards to why is there a need. A baby’s conceived. The mother and father end up deciding that they want to have a child. Conception takes place. Are there things that you know of or that are important from research that you’ve had exposure to that if a woman doesn’t take care of herself properly during the pregnancy, that that can right there start to set the tone for what a child or the future health of an individual can be like?

Whitney Hamed: Absolutely, it starts in the womb. And there’s so much research out there that shows the toxicity and what infants are exposed to in the womb. But not only that, just physically, the emotions that you’re feeling, the stress hormones that you’re producing in your body, maybe because of certain situations, the physical position of the baby itself. I mean, we know that breech positioning, 40% of those babies are known to later go on and have scoliosis. All of these things, the physical, the mental, the emotional, the chemicals, the hormones, everything’s affecting that developing baby.

The molecules of emotion

Bryan Joseph: So here’s what’s something that’s wild to me and I, and again, I don’t know, I don’t have any scientific proof on this, but like Olivia, my wife, here, there was two… We have four children and so do you, but inevitably, the two of the kids, she went through phases of life where she was deeply doing relaxation techniques during the pregnancy. Meditation, just kind of really, really in a zen-like relaxed state of mind, not a hyper stress state. And it’s the irony is the two kids that came after that were delivered in those situations are the most chill, relaxed, laid-back kids. Is there any validity in your mind to that?

Whitney Hamed: Molecules of emotion, right? And my most hyperactive child, on-the-go child is my fourth because I didn’t slow down as much, in her situation, to do a lot of those practices. And I absolutely think that. But yes, actually, Candace Pert wrote all about molecules of emotion. But I definitely think there’s total substance to that. Yes.

How A Mother’s Health Affects The Baby

How A Mother's Health Affects The Baby
Photographer: Camylla Battani | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: When it comes to health, the choices that you’re making are ultimately going to be impacting the little seedling, if you will, that actually, you’re brewing inside you as you’re having a baby. You also mentioned not just the emotional stress that a woman might experience while they’re pregnant, but the physical position of a child. So, my question to you would be, is the physical position of the mother part of the reason why the physical position for the baby may not be good or bad?

Whitney Hamed: Absolutely. A harder delivery, ladies. If you ever hear a lot like, “Oh,” maybe your friends say, “my baby won’t drop” or “none of my babies would ever drop.” It just means your anatomy, your pelvis, the mobility and movement and flexibility of your body may not be there because of past misalignments, traumas, all the things that we know can just affect a woman’s body and flexibility. So, absolutely.

What’s the position of the mother? What’s the flexibility of the mother and the physiology? How is that affecting the baby? Imagine if you’re trying to come through this world, now you’re conscious and you know how things feel when you fall or get a strain or sprain. Imagine going through the birth canal. Then basically hitting a wall, hitting an area where you can’t get out.

You’re getting pressure on your neck and head. And then at the same time, maybe you’re getting pulled and tugged out, or you’re having to then go through the C-section. So your body’s having to go through that. The baby’s having to get pulled in the opposite direction. There are so many forces and things that can go on between your body and the baby.

The Importance Of Milestones

The Importance Of Milestones
Photographer: Stephen Andrews | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: So, let’s take it like seasons, right? Like the seasons, we have spring, summer, fall, and winter. Let’s call the conception and pregnancy phase spring. And now let’s call from the birthing process all the way to say, maybe age three or four? Could we call that the beginning of summer?

Whitney Hamed: Absolutely.

Bryan Joseph: So, why is there a need or what is there to need to be aware of during that phase? What are some things that we need to be aware of trying to tune-up or correct for somebody in the phase of newborn all the way to say maybe three or four or five years old?

Whitney Hamed: The first, so, the biggest thing in that summer window is milestones. And the first thing you’ll see, the one thing you as parents can look at and see right away, and you know this, it’s innate, I promise you, you can see it in pictures, you’re telling your doctors about it, is your baby wants to tilt or turn their head one way continually. That’s how you know they’ve had strain to their neck. That’s how you know they may be misaligned. That’s how you know they may be out of balance. And in one way, shape, or form, in some way, it’s going to affect those future milestones that are coming up, rolling, sitting, proper crawling, walking, walking balanced. All of these things are what’s to come in that summer of development in the first three years of life.

Everything is connected from nerves to organs

Bryan Joseph: I remember being a first-time parent, and you’re not really aware of what to look for and not look for in a baby, when you’re talking about milestones, but you are aware when symptoms develop. A lot of kids start getting colicky, and a lot of kids start having ear issues or different respiratory issues or digestive issues. Can those be because of some of those milestones not being met?

Whitney Hamed: I love that you asked that question because that’s where the connection really lies. We think of physical just being muscles and joints and function, but it’s like a tree trunk. Some of those nerves from the brain and spinal cord branch out and control what we see on the outside as parents, as milestones. And that’s why I mentioned that because we can see it, it’s physical, but the other parts of the tree trunk are branching out to the organ systems.

So those same nerves in the neck that have been strained could cause that vagus nerve to just be on overstimulation. What is that? Colic, reflux, or they’re having a hard time with that physical milestone. But other organ systems are going awry, the lymphatics are backed up, the ears are getting backed up. All of these types of things like ear infections, colic, reflux, they can have physical connections.

Bryan Joseph: So, all I… Off the top of my head, and I should know this, off the top of my head, I don’t know exactly how many systems there are in the body. You got the digestive system, endocrine system, musculoskeletal system, cardiovascular, reproductive system and so on and so forth, and nervous system. But every one of those systems in the body obviously is intended to function.

Stressors will keep on mounting as we age

Bryan Joseph: And so in the season of spring and the season of early summer, just like anything that happens as an adult, if there’s a stressor that’s inputted, whether it be physically or chemically, they don’t even know what that threat looks like yet. But if those physical and chemical stressors are coming in during the season of spring and early summer, then they already begin to create some dysfunction in the body, which manifests as some of these conditions that we just expressed.

Whitney Hamed: It is. And imagine now, again, back to the topic of birth to death. Imagine if that’s the start. Already, things are harder for that child’s body, already. So, now they’ve got to go through more insults, more injuries, more stressors of life, becoming a teen, playing sports, playing even instruments, just the repetitive stress on their body, so I’m just giving you kind of concrete examples, just keep mounting now, all the way through adulthood. That’s why we are so passionate about, and I am, just getting off on the right start, having the right start, the right alignment, the decreasing that stress load on that developing child.

Bryan Joseph: It makes you think like, we all know back, whether it be ourselves or even kids that we were around when we were younger, there’s always kids that were sick all the time. There’s a good likelihood that those kids that are sick all the time and their immune system is suppressed, probably fell into one of these categories from day one.

Mental Stress During Adolescent Stage

Mental Stress During Adolescent Stage
Photographer: Natasha Spencer | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: Now let’s move into that adolescent stage. There’s further development for these kids from five till puberty. And so, what new types of threats or stressors show up? I mean, you made a great point. Now we’re starting to deal with mental stress.

Whitney Hamed: Right. So imagine now, if the nervous system has been under stress or they have any level of aches and pains that they can’t even communicate yet, or maybe like we talked about, those tree trunks, their digestive system is just not right. And now, they’re asked to be teenagers and eat healthy? Or they are starting to branch into body image issues? Wow. It’s a whole can of worms.

Bryan Joseph: That’s a great topic. So think about… We had a great discussion earlier around the same topic. As an adult, we run into all sorts of mental stressors that we put on ourself. A lot of it is just with the idea of trying to raise our self-esteem and keeping ourself really accepted and loved in a lot of ways, and that’s us as an adult.

So you start to think like, when a child’s in junior high school and they’re starting to get social or peer pressure or some of the bullies that are making them think that they’re different or not quite as cool as the cool kids, then they’re already beginning to assimilate mental and emotional stress, which is changing their hormones. Ultimately, those types of alignment issues or misalignment issues and their hormones are equally as damaging to their health. And we start to see those as girls that can’t have their periods on time, eating disorders, mood swings or depression, and anxiety in little young kids.

A compounding effect of stress

Whitney Hamed: And that’s because it sounds crazy to make this connection of, when I was misaligned at birth and I had stressed on my system, and now I’m a teen with hormones and eating problems and digestive issues, that if that one is… I know it sounds crazy, but just hear me out. To make that one connection that if we could have just removed the stress on the body from the very beginning, maybe just maybe, a lot of these problems don’t have to surface, or that teen could handle what’s in front of them because their physiology and their body is ready for it.

Bryan Joseph: It’s a compounding effect.

Whitney Hamed: Right.

Bryan Joseph: Right? So, you have a little bit of stress. At one point, your threshold for handling more is all right. But then you start just compounding the levels of stress, and none of them get handled because they’ve been compounding over a period of years. Now we move into that stage of, you’ve got someone that’s fully starting to develop as an adult, like 18 years old, 21 years old, all the way up to like 40 years old. And now you have this snowball that’s been rolling down a hill for quite a while.

Then all of a sudden, it’s no mystery as to why this individual is the one that’s dealing with chronic headaches now, or chronic shoulder issues or tension across their neck or back, or asthma, digestive issues, acid reflux. Real diseases are beginning to manifest in these individuals because the stress continued to compound.

Diseases That Shows Up in the Mid-30s and Beyond

Diseases That Shows Up in the Mid-30s and Beyond
Photographer: Artem Beliaikin | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: So, then if we call that, let’s say late summer. And now we’re starting to go into fall, where these are now going from just little aches and pains or symptoms that we may complain a little bit about and maybe it’s just a whisper. And we’re, let’s just say the mid-30s up to like the age I’d say 55, 60. If that’s fall, I guess, larger labeled diseases start to be known, right?

Whitney Hamed: It is. We specialize here in thyroid conditions and diabetes. I mean, you really start to get into those chronic problems.

Bryan Joseph: Autoimmune issues show up. And then even physically, you start seeing people herniate discs, bulging discs. Surgery starts to take place, organs like the gallbladder start to be removed. You get sections of your colon removed. Injections are more common in your joints because things, compounded for decades, and we’ve gotten to a point where they’re starting to break down. Now, here’s the wild part is, in our culture at that point, that’s when a lot of people attempt to try to fix things.

That’s when we start this podcast episode with the discussion that it’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle from day one. And if we attempt to try to catch up with a diet later, we have to backtrack and make sure we give ourselves a little bit of time to try to recognize that some of these stressors had been around for decades.

Whitney Hamed: Yes. And the amazing thing is, we can see people in that stage of life where we do and we can help them heal, and start to reverse conditions and feel better and function better.

Winter Shows Up Between our 60s and 90s

Winter Shows Up Between our 60s and 90s
Photographer: Matthew Bennett | Source: Unsplash

Bryan Joseph: And then, as sad as it might sound, we eventually go into winter, right? And winter starts far too early for a lot of people. Winter can start for some people where they have a massive attack in their 40s, where they develop cancer way too young or early where there’s some kind of debilitating disease. But on the averages, winter would show up, usually in between our 60s and our 90s, for most people. And we’d like to see that pushed out.

I guess from selfishly, all of us, when we’re talking about our own life journey, we want to live as long as we can. But at that stage during winter when these stressors have compounded, now we have different stressors, right? Think about it. In that fall phase, we’ve now had the stressor of money. We’ve got the stressor of relationships, we’ve got the stressor of trying to figure out our jobs. We’re trying to figure out how to raise children.

And then, as we go into the winter phase, there are different stressors of man, like mortality, where am I going to go with my life? And all these different sedentary lifestyles start to set in. We don’t move nearly as much as we used to. A lot of people as they age get to the point where they can just care less about their diet. Either they just throw in the towel and say, “I’m going to eat ice creams and cookies because I love it.” Or they’re the exact opposite, “I can’t eat a single thing without getting diarrhea.”

They want to enjoy the golden years

Whitney Hamed: Right, right. And in that phase, what I often hear, patients who come in to see us is, they need and want help because, for them, those are the golden years. They’re trying to retire and do more and be active and do trips with their spouse that they weren’t able to do through all those working years that were stressful. But yet their car, their body, is breaking down and they can’t enjoy those golden years like they wanted to, or that they had envisioned.

Bryan Joseph: All right. It’s far too many times I’ve had discussions with people, similar to you, where you know they’re heading towards a nursing home versus a cruise ship.

Whitney Hamed: Yes, yes.

Bryan Joseph: Right? And I can guarantee when all of us are sitting in kindergarten with our dream books and our coloring books and all our markers, and we’re dreaming of what we want our life to look like, nobody, nobody draws the picture of seeing themselves in a bed in a nursing home.

Whitney Hamed: Right, right.

Closing Thoughts

Bryan Joseph: Listen, this is kind of a fun discussion to have around the topic of birth to death and looking at health as a lifestyle versus just an intermittent diet that you have to try to fix every once in a while when it goes awry. So, thank you for having this discussion with me.

Whitney Hamed: You’re welcome. I think it’s a great one. And we’re blessed to be chiropractors that we got to get that vision because of what we do, at an early age and for our own kids. So, if I can pass that on and just give you those nuggets so that maybe you can see what we got to learn at such an early age, and having kids and going through our 30s and 40s, I’d love to pass it on to you.

Bryan Joseph: Awesome. Well, that ends, a little bit of a wrap of it, episode 50. Fun one to just put out there into the world because every one of us ends up being habitual creatures where we actually, we get in a good spot with momentum and then we allow stress to just pick us down, whether it be physically, chemically, or emotionally. And if we’re on the journey to try to express our health and our life as great as we can, as optimally as we can, throughout the journey that we have, then we have to be aware of, first of all, the different stressors that we have from day one or day zero, all the way to day whatever it is.

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