Methylation, Epigenetics and the Power of Personalized Medicine

Dr. Erica Oberg, physician and researched joins Elevate Your Energy to talk about epigenetics and nutrigenomics. Are you confused by genetic SNPs and what they mean? What is MTHFR? Is there a link between MTHFR and other genetic mutations?

Dr. Oberg will also invite you to participate in a research study so we can learn more about the impact of treating some of these mutations. To be a part of this, you can contact

If you've been doing some of your own research into MTHFR, Dr. Oberg will discuss where to find a practitioner who can help you.

Posted: 3/25/2016 10:56:13 AM by taylorpond | with 0 comments

The Importance of Estrogen Metabolism

The potential impact of estrogen on a woman’s health and wellbeing is enormous. While much attention has been given to the subject of hormone replacement, there has been very little discussion regarding the importance of estrogen metabolism, that is, how estrogen is broken down in the body.  There is a growing body of evidence that shows it is not simply the total amount of estrogen in the body but how estrogen is metabolized that may play an important role in disease development.  Regardless of the source; a woman’s own natural estrogen, hormone replacement, or xenoestrogens in the environment, how estrogen is broken down can be of critical importance in conditions such as cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis, and autoimmune disorders.

Estrogen is metabolized in the body along two major pathways and one minor.  In one of the major pathways, estrogen is metabolized into 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone. This metabolite exerts a powerful stimulatory effect on target tissues, including the breast. Levels of 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone may increase in response to obesity, alcohol or toxic exposure. High levels of this potent metabolite are suggested to have significant estrogenic effects and may be associated with higher rates of breast cancer. The minor pathway for estrogen metabolism is 4-hydroxyestrone which may also enhance cancer development.

The other major pathway is 2-hydroxyestrone which breaks down estrogen into a much weaker metabolite with less stimulatory effects on target tissues. Therefore, if you metabolize estrogen primarily through the 2-hydroxyestrone pathway you may lower your risk of cellular damage and cancer.

A proper balance between 2-hydroxyestrone and 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone is critical to lowering the risk for estrogen dependent health problems. 

So, what can you do to optimize estrogen metabolism?  
Moderate exercise, flaxseed, soy, kudzu, cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts), and omega 3 fatty acids can all help to increase metabolism through the” good” or 2-hydroxyestrone pathway. The supplement, indole-3-carbinol, can also raise your good estrogen metabolite levels.

Have your doctor measure your urinary metabolites of 2-hydroxy and 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone. This assessment can be done in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women. Testing can assess the need for dietary and lifestyle changes as well as assess the impact of hormone replacement therapy.

By Dr. Linda Olafson, M.D., FAAFP from North Coast Integrative Medicine.

Posted: 5/28/2014 1:27:37 PM by taylorpond | with 3 comments

Are your prescription creams working effectively?


Do you ever wonder if the cream in the little white tube or jar is actually working? How can you be sure there is the same amount of medication at the top of the tube as there is at the bottom?

These are good questions. 

Transdermal prescriptions (applied and absorbed through the skin) consist of creams, gels and ointments utilized to deliver an appropriate level of medication into the body.

Some common examples include pain creams, prescription skincare creams and bioidentical hormone replacement creams.

An important way to measure a prescription’s quality is through efficacy. The compounding process can vary significantly depending on which compounding pharmacy you use.

An essential piece of compounding equipment used to ensure high quality compounded creams is the ointment mill.

A stringent “milling process” is one way to ensure efficacy.  An ointment mill which reduces particle sizes and provides a smooth final product ensures each dose has the same amount of medication.

Even if a cream is compounded with the highest quality ingredients and expertise, if the medication is not dispersed evenly throughout the cream efficacy can be diminished. By example, if a cream is not properly milled, a patient could receive a tube of compounded cream that has a higher level of prescription medication at one end of the tube vs. the other.

When made properly, compounded prescription creams are a great way to deliver medication into the blood stream. They allow for a slow release of medication into the body and provide a very effective absorption method leading to maximum efficacy.


·      Ask if your compounding pharmacy mills its creams and go on a tour of the lab.

·      La Vita is proud to adhere to the highest safety and quality standards in the compounding industry as evidenced by its PCAB Accreditation®.

·      Less than 1% of ALL pharmacies hold this prestigious accreditation.

·      Patients can confirm their compounding pharmacy is PCAB Accredited® by visiting


Posted: 5/16/2013 5:38:52 PM by Lavita Admin | with 0 comments

Compounding Sterile Injectables: Cleaning The "Clean Room"

We know the use of clean, new needles is important to stop the possible spread of disease, but what about what goes in the needle?

Making sterile products is the most critical type of compounding and ensuring the safety and quality of sterile injectables is serious business. PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacies must adhere to the strictest pharmacy regulations, including rigorous documentation of disinfection of the clean room where sterile injectables are compounded.

The level of cleanliness in a clean room in a PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacy can be compared to that of an operating room in a hospital.  Only staff specially trained in high-level disinfection are permitted to clean the clean room areas including countertops, shelving, vents, ante-room sinks and storage bin surfaces daily at the beginning of the work shift prior to compounding.

Pharmacy staff must clean every 30 minutes during continuous compounding.
That’s a lot of cleaning and that’s the way it should be! Sacrificing protocol in this process is simply unacceptable and unsafe.

Remember, you have the right to choose a pharmacy that you can trust. Always choose a PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacy. If your physician uses a pharmacy that is not PCAB Accredited®, take a few minutes to search the PCAB website ( to find an accredited compounding pharmacy to fill your prescriptions.

Take-Aways: Some good questions to ask your compounding pharmacy!

•    Does the facility have "state of the art" equipment?
•   Does the pharmacy have "standard operating procedures"?
•   Are there any unresolved complaints with the Board of Pharmacy?
•   Can we see your facility?

Posted: 2/18/2013 12:19:22 PM by Lavita Admin | with 0 comments

What is Your Compounding Pharmacy Doing to Make Sure Your Medications Are Safe?

Make sure your compounding pharmacy is PCAB Accredited®.

The Professional Compounding Accreditation Board (PCAB) is a voluntary quality accreditation designation for the compounding industry. PCAB brings together the expertise the leading pharmacy organizations in the United States in the field of compounding pharmacy. The following are organizations who founded PCAB and whom make up the PCAB Board of Directors:

• American College of Apothecaries
• National Community Pharmacists Association
• American Pharmacists Association
• National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations
• International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists
• National Home Infusion Association
• National Association of Boards of Pharmacy
• United States Pharmacopeia

La Vita is proud to be a PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacy for both sterile and non-sterile compounding. Our accreditation shows our dedication to protecting our patients by practicing safe, high-quality compounding. While all compounding pharmacies are regulated by the State Board of Pharmacy, PCAB® Accreditation is an even more comprehensive way to ensure a compounding pharmacy has undergone the profession’s most rigorous review and inspection measures. 

To earn the designation “PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacy,” we completed an extensive application that was reviewed by the Pharmacy Compounding Accreditation Board. Our compounding policies and procedures were then reviewed by professionals. Next, we opened our doors for an extensive on-site inspection led by compounding experts. Only when these stringent evaluations were completed did the PCAB® officially grant us the PCAB® Seal of Accreditation. 
Only 163 of the 7,000 compounding pharmacies in the US have applied for accreditation. Of those 163, only half are accredited for their sterile compounding.

Less than 1% of all compounding pharmacies are accredited for sterile compounding.  La Vita is one of them.
You can feel safe about the compounding pharmacies accredited by PCAB because:

• PCAB has verified that the pharmacy is not on probation for issues related to compounding quality, public safety or controlled substances.

• PCAB has verified that the pharmacy is properly licensed in each state in which it does business.

• A  PCAB surveyor has completed an extensive on-site evaluation.  This evaluation includes:

1. An assessment of the pharmacy’s system for assuring and maintaining staff competency.
2. A review of facilities and equipment.
3. Review of records and procedures required to prepare quality compounded medications.
4. Verification that the pharmacy uses ingredients from FDA registered and or licensed sources.
5. Review of the pharmacy’s program for testing and checking their compounded preparations.
6. PCAB performs evaluations every three years and reserves the right to do “drop in” surveys to be sure pharmacies are compliant with PCAB standards.

Our new accreditation status as a PCAB Accredited® compounding pharmacy lets you know that La Vita shows dedication to protecting our patients by practicing safe, high-quality compounding.

Take- Aways:

• To learn more about PCAB Accreditation® and to see if your compounding pharmacy is accredited, please visit

• Patients ALWAYS have a right to choose which pharmacy fills their prescriptions.

• Whenever possible, go to the compounding pharmacy for a site visit.


Posted: 11/21/2012 6:55:12 AM by Lavita Admin | with 0 comments

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