About Alejandra Carrasco, MD
Dr. Carrasco is board certified in both Family Medicine and Integrative and Holistic Medicine. Her approach is comprehensive, innovative, holistic, and empowering. Learn new medical tools to nourish yourself and your family.
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1:27 Dr. Carrasco’s Functional Medicine Journey: During pre-med, she began doing yoga and read Spontaneous Healing by Andrew Weil. It shifted her healing paradigm. She also studied anthropology and herbs. She chose to become a Family Medicine Doctor, because she wanted to work with the entire family from birth to death. She did a rotation with Dr. Andrew Weil, whose approach uses relaxation, botanicals, nutrition, parasympathetic support and spirituality. At a Food Is Medicine Summit, she discovered Functional Medicine.
6:06 The Illness: During her third year of medical school, Dr. Carrasco was plagued with panic attacks, IBS, and migraines. She believes the triggers for her illness were external stressors, poor sleep patterns, working and studying long hours, poor nutrition, birth control pills and anti-microbials for acne.
8:33 Addressing Core Issues: It’s like an onion and you have to pull back all the layers. We want to take a supplement and be better, but that is not reality. She believes that the number one issue is stress. Our modern lifestyle runs our nervous system into the ground. We are all being chased by a figurative lion all day. We are up regulated and then crashing.
10:20 Mind Body Therapies: Most of us do not believe we have permission to take care of ourselves. Meditation is powerful, but daunting to the beginner. She recommends multiple sessions of HeartMath per day to all of her patients. We like data and it provides us with data. She also recommends that people spend time in nature, walking outside barefoot, grounding or earthing, at least 30 minutes every day. It calms your nervous system, increases your parasympathic response and builds glutathione. She recommends daily 30 minute Epsom salts baths.
15:08 Grounding and Nature: It is an amazing therapy. A recent study showed that people were able to reset their chronic insomnia by camping for 2 weeks with no electronics.
16:36 Food Stressors and Remedies: That standard American diet is crap. All processed foods are inflammatory, as is gluten. Humans not long ago used to eat a diverse assortment of healthy animals from snout to tail. The animals that we consume now have lived lives where they are not living or eating as nature intended. They are often sick and contain antibiotics. This plays a role in reducing omega 3 and increasing omega 6 fat within the animal. Processed foods also increase omega 6 levels over omega 3 levels. This drives inflammation.
19:50 Omega 3 and Mushrooms: For a year between medical school and residency, Dr. Carrasco researched how omega 3 and medicinal mushrooms brings down inflammation. It was gratifying to be able to bring down inflammation using fish oil as efficiently as NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, naproxen, and asprin), but without the side effects.
21:36 Eating Sad Animals: We are energetic beings. If we consume a being that suffered, you would not be receiving the highest vibration.
22:23 Supplements for Stress Relief: Dr. Carrasco recommends vitamin C, three times a day, to her patients with stress and adrenal fatigue. It supports immunity and helps build collagen networks, supporting gut mucosa. We are not outside as we are meant to be, so vitamin D is also needed. Everyone should take probiotics; multiple strain, high dose, high potency. For her patients with pain and joint aches. She also recommends fish oil, usually between 2 and 4 grams. She checks her patient’s platelets and recommends accordingly. Fish oil thins the blood.
26:00 Restoration: Easing your stress is not an indulgence. You will only heal if you can convince your body that you are not being chased by that lion. Our logical brain convinces us that we are not stressed because our needs are being met. We need restoration during our waking hours too. Play is important, along with achievement, in adults and children. Adults and children need restoration as part of their daily life.
30:25 Back To the Kitchen: Making your own food is very powerful. It is therapeutic. Energetically, putting love into your food is a good thing for your family and yourself. We are meant to eat stock/bone broth.
34:03 Find Your Tribe: It is imperative that we find people to whom we relate, to help us feel supported and empowered. It also has a huge impact upon our health. Life is so busy, that it is challenging to make those connections. A close friendship is more positive to your health than smoking is detrimental to your health. It can negate the detrimental effects. Friendship is a great parasympathetic activator. Find a balance between community, that keeps you busy, and restoration.
39:25 Stress: If people understood that stress is the driver of obesity, thyroid dysfunction, GI dysfunction, and memory impairment, they would be amenable to working to pull back the stress response. We cannot control all external factors, but we can work on what is going on inside of us.
41:53 Just One Supplement, Nutrient or Whole Food: If Dr. Carrasco had only one of these to prescribe; it would be stock/bone broth. It is nutritionally dense, highly bioavailable and helps restore gut integrity.
45:03 Morning Routine: While still in bed, Dr. Carrasco sets her intentions for the day and they have a big family breakfast every day.
48:14 One Health Tip for Americans: Balance. Work less and play more. Create a culture where there is time for restoration.