(813) 867-0608 • Contact • Schedule an Appointment

(813) 867-0608 • Contact • Schedule an Appointment

Understanding the Role and Benefits of Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide (VIP)

By |2024-06-19T13:54:26-04:00June 19th, 2024|Categories: Peptides|Tags: , , , , , , |0 Comments

At PROVOKE Health, we prioritize understanding the latest advancements in functional medicine and integrative healthcare in order to provide our patients with the most effective treatments.

One such advancement is the use of Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide (VIP), a peptide hormone made up of 28 amino acids. Found in high concentrations throughout the body — including in the respiratory system, endocrine organs, heart, and brain, , and— VIP plays a crucial role in maintaining overall health.

If you’re unfamiliar with peptides, read “The Healing and Rejuvenating Power of Therapeutic Peptides” here on the PROVOKE Health blog. In short, peptides are short strings of amino acids — much shorter than protein molecules and easier for the body to absorb and break down — that are bioactive and have a beneficial effect on the body.

Graphic for Role and Benefits of Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide

In this post, we’ll focus on the benefits of VIP, starting with its impact on improving gut health.

Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide and Gut Health

Vasoactive intestinal peptide has a significant impact on the health of your gut. Here’s how VIP supports a healthy digestive system: Continue reading…

Florida is No. 1 in The Nation for Mold — Here’s How to Protect Your Family

By |2024-04-09T21:26:30-04:00April 9th, 2024|Categories: Mold|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

Florida leads the nation in a number of things, including being the most favored destination for people who are retiring. It’s also the most popular state for new business formations —outside of Delaware, which is a business formation mill. And the Sunshine State is also No. 1 for something called Education Freedom, which enables students and parents a choice of educational options that best meet their needs.

We could go on and on with these “best in the nation” accolades, but this post deals with what we consider one of Florida’s least laudable attributes: mold. Hands down, Florida is No. 1 in nation in mold.

Mold problem in the state of Florida

According to a March 2024 study, Florida scored 38.76 out of a possible 40 on the FDP Mold Index. Mississippi ran a close second at 38.66 and Louisiana came in third with 38.52. FDP’s mold index is based on four key metrics that can be attributed to higher chances of mold growing inside and outside the home:

  • Average rainfall
  • Average temperature
  • Average humidity
  • Average age of homes

Each metric accounts for 10 of the total 40 points.

These scores are no surprise to our medical team here at PROVOKE Health. Many of our patients live in Tampa and other areas in South Central Florida, and their initial visit to our clinic or via a virtual appointment is often because they’re seeking relief from symptoms commonly related to mold exposure. These patients typically have already consulted with conventional medical practices without receiving much, if any, relief. Some of these medical practices don’t even offer a clear diagnosis.

At PROVOKE Health, we provide relief through a highly personalized protocol that addresses everything from in-home testing and mold remediation to blood draws, detoxing, and treating any mold/fungal infection. We calm the inflammatory response and restore health and function to the body’s nervous system, which is often impacted by mold exposure. And while we don’t test homes or perform mold remediation ourselves, we have a list of trusted companies that do as part of our treatment protocol.

Recognizing the Symptoms of Toxic Mold Exposure

Mold exposure can cause infections, especially sinus infections, as well as overwhelm the body’s natural detox mechanisms. Infections and toxins can cause chronic inflammation, which produce symptoms that are vague and difficult to trace back to a clear underlying cause unless you’re a trained medical professional who knows what to look for. Symptoms of mold exposure include, but are not limited to, the following: Continue reading…

What’s Making Your Immune System Go Haywire?

As a doctor trained in the functional medicine approach to healthcare, I spend much of my time discovering and treating chronic illnesses, including those encompassing chronic inflammation, which can often be traced to immune system dysfunction. The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates daily how an infection can trigger a powerful immune response resulting in inflammation.

With COVID-19, the inflammation primarily impacts the lungs, but it can affect other organs and tissues, as well. Deaths from COVID-19 are typically a result of excessive inflammation caused by the body’s over-the-top immune response.

Inflammation isn’t all bad. In fact, it’s part of the mechanism responsible for enabling the body to fight disease, recover from injury, and repair damaged tissue. Any trauma to the body’s cells triggers an inflammatory response. The immune system releases inflammatory chemicals, which expand blood vessels and cause them to leak, thereby delivering healing cells and substances to the site that’s injured or under attack. The expansion and leaking of blood vessels are what cause the inflammation.

Unfortunately, the immune system can become the body’s own worst enemy, identifying healthy cells as threats and attacking those cells — a condition referred to as autoimmunity. Various autoimmune diseases can develop as a result, depending on the cause and the organs or tissues being damaged. With type 1 diabetes, the immune system attacks pancreatic cells, impairing the body’s ability to produce insulin; with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, the immune system attacks the thyroid; with rheumatoid arthritis, it primarily attacks the joints; with multiple sclerosis (MS) and Guillain-Barré syndrome, it attacks nerve cells; with myocarditis, it attacks the heart; and so on.

The exact mechanism that gives rise to an autoimmune disease remains a mystery. However, evidence suggests that the cause may be traced to a genetic susceptibility triggered by one or more environmental factors, which may include chronic stress, poor diet, gut dysbiosis (an imbalance of microorganisms in the intestines), infections, environmental toxins, as well as other stressors.

Recent research points to viral and bacterial infections as being major triggers for several autoimmune diseases, including the following: Continue reading…

Mold, It’s Usually NOT Allergy – It’s A Biotoxin Illness Named CIRS