August Notes from Dr. Klug

The Malnourished Microbiome: Americans #1 Nutritional Deficiency

I love it when an article comes along that ties so many things together. In last months newsletter, I wrote about a study that showed that eating at regular times and not overeating helps our microbiome maintain our circadian rhythm and a healthy metabolism. I also shared the purported benefits of the high polyphenol olive oil I use in my morning smoothie, Kyoord. Now comes an article stating that most Americans don’t feed their microbiome well. This creates an unbalanced state “that leads to inflammation and intestinal permeability, which then increases the risk of developing a wide range of diseases.” A healthy microbiome needs fiber and polyphenols. Americans are deficient in both. The microbiome breaks down fiber into postbiotic compounds that are now being recognized “as critical health regulating compounds that control a wide range of biological activity in the host.” Polyphenols on the other hand, exert a prebiotic effect, meaning they promote the growth of some microorganisms and inhibit others. Between fiber and polyphenols the microbiome is well-maintained. Which leads to…

What’s in My Smoothie? Golden Flax Seeds

Flax seeds are an excellent source of fiber and polyphenols to feed the microbiome. I put 1 TBSP of golden flax seed per person in my smoothie. If you have an emulsifying blender such as a Vita-Mix, whole seeds can be used, otherwise, grind them first by purchasing them ground, or using a coffee grinder reserved just for flax seeds, unless you like a coffee taste to your smoothie. Golden flax seeds have been shown to be rich in plant based omega 3 fatty acids where as brown ones are rich in omega-6 fatty acids. Most of us are deficient in omega-3 and have way too much omega-6 fatty acids. Interestingly, flax seeds have long been known to prevent metabolic diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and stroke. Anyone out there making a connection? It’s that microbiome again!

Staying Safe in the “Hot Heat”

I have lived in this general area since 1976, so I take for granted that folks know what to do when the heat index rises into the triple digits. However, I had a patient ask me about this just the other day. Here’s what I do:

  1. Wear a wide brimmed hat. It reduces the heat from the blazing sun and protects the skin. Mine has a retractable drape over the back of my neck that I find absolutely essential. I swear it cools me down an extra 5 degrees.
  2. Work outdoors early and late. I garden in the morning before the sun gets too high. My husband and I take a walk after sunset.
  3. Drink plenty of water and electrolytes, but NOT Gatorade. Divide your body weight by 2 to get your baseline water need in ounces. Then add 32 ounces, one quart, for every half hour of sweating. If I feel lightheaded upon standing or the least bit woozy, I add electrolytes along with water. Gatorade is a lousy option. It is sugar water. Check out the Hibiscus Refresher for a healthier electrolyte replacement in my last newsletter. I added some tea blends for those who prefer tea bags. I also like Amazing Grass brand Hydrate tablets. I always keep water in a thermal bottle in my car. Getting into a hot car sucks the water out of you faster than you realize. I make a point to drink whenever I get into a hot car.
  4. Wear sunglasses only by the pool, lake or ocean. Our circadian rhythm and mood regulated by light exposure through the eyes. We need light! Other times to wear sunglasses: in the snow or at high altitudes. Just like water, snow reflects and amplifies the sun. The sun is much closer and thus more intense at high altitudes. It’s a balance between receiving much needed light and protecting the retina.
  5. Use only zinc oxide based sunscreens. Not too long ago, we learned the chemicals in sunscreen cause skin cancer. Geesh! So now we are back to zinc oxide. Badger brand is clean and effective. I use sunscreen only for longer exposures in high sun. I always wear sunscreen if I am wearing sunglasses, as the risk of sunburn is much greater.
  6. Seek shade. At 8 am a few Saturdays ago, it was blazing hot at the Brookside Farmer’s Market. The shade of the market tents was easily 5 degrees cooler than standing in the sun. I notice the same on my bicycle rides to work. It is cooler under the trees.
My Favorite Hot Weather Hat

Supplement Sale August 23 – 24

Heads up! Fullscript is offering 15% off on all supplements August 23 – 24 only. Plan ahead by reviewing your supplement needs, then stock up!

Dr. Bethany Klug has practiced holistic and functional medicine since 2003, after it resolved health challenges that conventional medicine could not address for her. She is known for taking time to listen and to tease out the root causes that when addressed lead to more vibrant health. The name of her practice, HealthSpan, was inspired by her wish for everyone to enjoy lifelong vibrant health, instead of a long life plagued by chronic disease. She is known as an osteopath, and for her skill in natural medicine and bioidentical hormone replacement. Her practice is located in Prairie Village, KS, a suburb of Kansas City. Learn more at

SAVE 15% Off Select Seafood During Our Summer Grilling Sale! Use Code: GRILL15 At Checkout!

Shop Now! Thru 9/1/2022

SAVE 15% Off Select Seafood During Our Summer Grilling Sale! Use Code: GRILL15 At Checkouit! Shop Now!

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Try delicious grilled Sockeye Salmon burgers for your Labor Day gathering or buttery Sablefish for something more up-to-do. Remember, all fish in our area is old! Vital Choice fish tastes good and is good for you because it is flash frozen right after it’s caught, preserving the flavor and nutrition.

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