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“The Drugless Doctor’s” Top 4 Tips for July 4th

Independence Day is my favorite holiday. We celebrate the freedom that our forefathers worked so diligently to provide. If you have traveled anywhere abroad with the absence of freedom, you know what I mean. We are blessed to live in this country!

Freedom to choose what we put in and on our body can sometimes be a big health issue—Fourth of July picnics and BBQs (which I love) often have dishes whose ingredients can sabotage the best-intended diet. 

When I was growing up, we used to have the red and blue gelatin-based desert with mini marshmallows mixed in with a certain whipped topping. Colors (Blue No. 1, Red No. 40, etc.) and preservatives today can create pain syndromes. It is not widely known sugar and food coloring can interfere with your body’s ability to make the fat hormone tissue that stops pain. I have patients visit us in the office on Monday mornings after a long weekend of celebrations, wincing with pain after I touch their left necks and mid backs—they look at me with a glare and ask, “What caused that?” I have my typical list of Monday morning questions for them: Did you have a cake or pastry? How much soda and wine did you drink? Was there a fruit salad?

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Over my thirty-five plus years of practice, I have discovered strawberries tend to cause pain in the neck and mid back in June, cherries in late July and peaches in August. I am not saying fruit is unhealthy; however, I am suggesting most Americans have an overworked pancreas. Sweet fruits, yogurt, ice cream, pastries, potatoes and alcohol all create a demand on the pancreas, which results in left neck and mid back pain (this is the embryologic origin of the pancreas and where it receives nervous system input).

My July 4th suggestions to you, if you do not want to have lingering digestive distress:

  1. Limit the pork you eat (pork is quite toxic—pay attention to how much water you drink hours after you have eaten ham). 
  2. Examine your BBQ sauce ingredients. Many of my patients have distress with any type of barbecue sauce. There often are sugar and seasonings that excite the nervous system causing headaches and digestive distress. 
  3. Easy on the soda. Soda consumption can be an issue because of the caramel coloring, which is gluten sourced.
  4. I would not over indulge in any beef product; if you wake up in the middle of the night with a general warming over your body, it is your body’s attempt to clear the toxins.

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Lastly, if you go to a potluck and you are not aware of the food source, focus on vegetables and hummus. I hope these tips help and you have happy & healthy Fourth of July!! 

What are your July 4th traditions? Which foods tempt you the most and have you experienced any of the pain symptoms I covered above? Feel free to ask questions and I’ll do my best to answer!


Dr. Bob DeMaria, “The Drugless Doctor,” is a trusted, long-time partner of His views and opinions are his own and are for informational purposes only. Please consult with your primary healthcare provider before changing your personal health regimen.


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