Confused?… Where to Start with Your Diet

Confused?… Where to Start with Your Diet

It is extremely hard to navigate starting healthy diet when there is so much conflicting information floating around.  There are millions of TV shows, articles and social media posts that say, “Always do this” and “Never do that.”  It’s confusing.

At the NHCAA, we recognize that “always” and “never” are unrealistic.  We are all unique individuals with different genetics, lifestyles, and metabolic types.  That’s why our practitioners don’t give out cookie-cutter diet recommendations to each patient.  We help our patients discover their best diets by tracking their intake and making changes, monitoring results, and thus evolving their diets over time.

Even though there is no one-size-fits-all diet, we must start somewhere.  Everyone is unique, but there are some basic, natural laws that apply to food and your health.  These laws are as follows:

  • White refined sugar is inflammatory to the whole body and unhealthy for all.  
  • Eating too many carbohydrates puts stress on the metabolic system.
  • Chemical contaminants in food create a toxic burden in the body.
  • Rancid oils and processed fats inflame the cardiovascular system.

These 4 points form the foundation for starting a healthy diet.  If you are unsure of what dietary path to take, start with applying these 4 nutrition laws and expand from there until you get the results you are seeking.  

All NHCAA patients are recommended to start a low carb diet that consists of REAL food.  How low carb to go is the recommendation that is variable.  A low carb diet is typically no more than 125 grams of net carbs per day, but many people may need to go much lower than that to achieve results.

Regardless of what your health picture is, you should apply these datums to your food choices.  If you are confused about what you should do with your diet, then you should first make sure you are applying all of these principles and then, if you still need direction, you should consult with a practitioner at our office to help you figure out what changes will best support health in your body.

Your Holistic Pharmacist,

Dr. Amanda Childress, PharmD

Unlocking the Potential of Ozone: Harnessing the Power of a Unique Molecule

Unlocking the Potential of Ozone: Harnessing the Power of a Unique Molecule

When we hear the word “ozone,” many of us think of the protective layer in our atmosphere or the potential harm it can cause when it forms near the ground. However, there is more to ozone than meets the eye. Ozone is a molecule composed of three oxygen atoms, and its applications extend beyond its role in the atmosphere. In fact, ozone has been studied for over a century and has been used in various remedies for common ailments.

Contrary to popular belief, ozone for self care is not a new discovery. Its existence was identified in the mid-nineteenth century, and since then, researchers have been investigating its properties and potential benefits. One of the key uses of ozone lies in its ability to support the immune system by increasing oxygen supply to the body and stimulating the production of red blood cells. Studies have suggested that ozone can effectively deactivate bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeast, and protozoa, making it a powerful tool in combating infections and boosting overall immune health.

Moreover, ozone has shown promise in addressing oxidative stress associated with conditions such as spinal disorders and diabetes. Oxidative stress refers to the imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in the body. By correcting this imbalance, ozone therapy can help mitigate the detrimental effects of oxidative stress on our health.

To make the benefits of ozone more accessible, we have introduced a range of ozonated products that can be incorporated into your holistic health program. These products include:

  • Ozonated Toothpaste: Promotes oral health and hygiene by harnessing the properties of ozone for fresh breath and potential antimicrobial benefits.
  • Ozonated Deodorant: Utilizes ozone to help neutralize odor-causing bacteria, offering a natural and potentially effective solution for body odor control.
  • Ozonated Oils: Topical application of ozonated oils can provide localized benefits, such as supporting wound healing, soothing skin irritations, and promoting overall skin health.
  • Ozonated Suppositories: Designed for rectal and vaginal use, ozonated suppositories may offer potential benefits for addressing certain conditions and promoting optimal wellness in those areas.
  • Ozonated Capsules: Oral intake of ozonated capsules allows for systemic exposure to ozone, potentially supporting various aspects of health from within.

If you are curious about how ozonated products can enhance your daily self-care routine or address specific health concerns, I encourage you to discuss them during your next visit. Our team is equipped to provide guidance and personalized recommendations based on your individual needs.

It is important to note that ozone therapy should be approached with caution and under the guidance of qualified healthcare professionals experienced in this field. The use of ozone should be tailored to each person’s unique circumstances and goals to ensure safe and effective outcomes.

In conclusion, ozone, a molecule with three oxygen atoms, holds immense potential in the realm of holistic health. From supporting immune function to combating infections and addressing oxidative stress, ozone therapy offers a unique approach to promoting wellness. With our range of ozonated products, you can explore the benefits of ozone in your daily routine and embark on a journey toward optimal health.


Clearing up the Confusion: Understanding Cholesterol

Clearing up the Confusion: Understanding Cholesterol

Cholesterol has long been a topic of discussion when it comes to health, and it is surrounded by a fair share of misconceptions.

Many people believe that cholesterol is inherently bad, should be avoided, and serves no positive role in the human body. However, cholesterol is actually a vital component for our overall well-being and plays several important roles in our physiological processes. In this article, we aim to dispel some of the misunderstandings surrounding cholesterol by addressing common questions and providing accurate information.

To begin, let’s define what cholesterol truly is. According to the definition provided in my Human Anatomy & Physiology book, cholesterol is a lipid, or fat-like compound, produced by body cells. It serves as a building block for synthesizing steroid hormones and is excreted into the bile. This unbiased definition reveals that cholesterol has crucial functions in the body, and it is not solely a negative substance, as often believed.

Contrary to the misconception that having zero cholesterol is ideal, humans cannot survive without it. Cholesterol plays a vital role in our health, contributing to cellular function, tissue repair, and hormone production. It is important to note that cholesterol is not solely derived from the food we eat; approximately 80% of cholesterol is produced by our bodies, while only around 20% comes directly from dietary sources. This means that even if you were to eliminate high-cholesterol foods from your diet, your body would continue to produce cholesterol as needed.

Many individuals are concerned about their cholesterol levels and seek to lower them through dietary changes. However, it is essential to understand that cholesterol is not solely a result of dietary intake. Factors such as genetics, lifestyle, and overall health influence cholesterol levels. Therefore, diet alone may not be sufficient to lower cholesterol, especially if it is predominantly produced by your body.

When discussing cholesterol levels, it is important to understand the significance of individual cholesterol markers beyond the total cholesterol number. Here is a breakdown of the different components:

  • Total cholesterol: This number is a sum of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and 20% of triglycerides. It is important to note that the total cholesterol number alone does not provide enough information to make accurate assessments of your cholesterol profile.
  • HDL (high-density lipoprotein): Known as “good” cholesterol, HDL helps remove “bad” cholesterol from the bloodstream and transports it back to the liver. Higher levels of HDL are desirable and can protect against cardiovascular diseases. For both men and women, HDL levels should ideally be over 60mg/dL. Foods such as wild-caught salmon, walnuts, and flaxseed oil can help increase HDL levels.
  • LDL (low-density lipoprotein): Often referred to as “bad” cholesterol, LDL levels can increase with a poor diet, lack of exercise, and high levels of stress. Elevated LDL levels have been linked to work-related stress. A healthy diet, stress reduction techniques, regular exercise, and sufficient sleep are important for managing LDL levels. The conventional medicine target for LDL is generally less than 100mg/dL.
  • VLDL (very low-density lipoprotein): Primarily composed of triglycerides, VLDL levels can provide valuable insights when assessing cholesterol profiles. A VLDL value less than 19 is considered optimal for a healthy individual.
  • Triglycerides: These are created when our bodies do not immediately utilize the energy from the food we consume. Triglycerides are stored in adipose/fat tissue as a form of energy reserve. High triglyceride levels can be influenced by factors such as a diet high in sugar, frequent snacking, and late-night eating. Strategies such as intermittent fasting, low-carbohydrate diets, and reducing processed foods and sugars can help lower triglyceride levels.

If you have been informed that your cholesterol levels are high, it is crucial to obtain the individual numbers for HDL, LDL, triglycerides, and VLDL. These numbers will provide a more comprehensive understanding of your cholesterol profile. Discussing these results with your healthcare provider or practitioner will help determine the appropriate course of action, whether it involves dietary adjustments, supplementation, or lifestyle changes.

Furthermore, it is essential to consider the trend of your cholesterol levels over time rather than focusing solely on a single test result. Evaluating trends in your labs can provide more meaningful insights into your overall health. If you have not had your cholesterol labs done in several years, it is recommended to establish multiple follow-up labs to assess the trend accurately.

In conclusion, understanding cholesterol involves dispelling common misconceptions and acknowledging its essential role in our bodies. Cholesterol is not inherently bad but rather serves important functions in our cells, hormones, and overall health. By comprehending the different cholesterol markers and discussing your specific cholesterol profile with a healthcare professional, you can gain a more accurate understanding of your cardiovascular health and make informed decisions to support your well-being. Remember that total cholesterol alone does not provide sufficient information, and it is essential to consider individual cholesterol components and their interplay in your overall health.


Why I Love Helping Kids

Why I Love Helping Kids

1. Kids are incredible humans.

The young people that I see in the office have magnificent minds. I see it in the way they thoughtfully answer questions. They are curious about everything. They listen to what is being said around them and notice even the smallest details. They are willing and able to do what is asked of them.

2. The idea that I can change healthcare for future generations.

As a child, I didn’t go to the medical doctor very much. There were some check ups that involved him listening to my heart, looking in my throat and ears, getting a few shots, and antibiotics when I was sick. When I got older (in my 20’s and 30’s) and started experiencing some symptoms, my visits to the medical doctor weren’t much different. But, I noticed I didn’t have much benefit from those visits. It was at age 36 that I found Dr. Schmidt and learned nutrition would actually help get to the cause of my concerns and the reason why I had symptoms.

I want kids to experience this benefit at a much earlier age than I did. I want muscle testing to be normal to them. I want supplements to be what they reach for when they need support for their body. I want them to know there are natural solutions to health. 

3. Children give me hope for a brighter future.

Young people are the future. Their ideas will shape the world, our nation, and all of our existence going forward. We have to treat them well and encourage their creativity, leadership, kindness, and strength so that they can lead us. I am counting on them to make this planet a better place.

I want to help give children the knowledge to be healthy, productive, and responsible far into the future. Maybe in this way I can change the world for the better.

P.S. Adults can have these traits and I’d love to help you, too.

Yours in health,

Kerry Cradit BS, Nutrition & Food Science

Giving Thanks For Some Of My Favorite Things

Giving Thanks For Some Of My Favorite Things

Every once in a while I like to assess where I have been, what I have learned, where I am, and what I hope to accomplish in the future. This seems to be an appropriate time to do that.

I am incredibly thankful to have been raised by two loving parents who gave my brothers and I a very strong foundation to grow. My extended family (cousins, aunts, uncles) is an important part of my life and learning. I am married and I am thankful for the support of my husband. We will celebrate our 30th anniversary this summer.  My adult daughters have brought me so much opportunity to learn and grow. Raising them was the hardest and best job I have ever had. Now, I am trying to do all I can to make my grandson’s future the best it can be.

I am grateful for being able to seek the truth and learning new things every day. What I learned in school (the science) was good. The application was skewed. I learned in school that I should tell a diabetic patient to use artificial sweetener. But, at the same time I was writing research papers that showed the toxic effects of aspartame. So, I learned the value of seeking knowledge and the truth for myself.  I am very happy that I learned biology, physiology, chemistry, and food science. It gives me the ability to research now and look for true answers instead of just following a headline.

My health before The NHCAA was good for the most part. I was a Dance and Pilates instructor. My life was busy with kids and family.  But, I had headaches almost daily, frequent sinus problems, and back pain that brought me to The NHCAA to see Dr. Schmidt. I also had a fearful outlook of the future. I made decisions based on fear (rather than hope and a positive outlook of the future). If I was scared something wouldn’t turn out right, I would avoid it or do something different. The positive changes in my health (too many to mention here) and outlook on life are a product of strengthening my body and mind with nutrition and learning new things. My focus now and going forward is “how can I help more people?”.

Dr. Schmidt has taught me more in the 15 years I have known him than I could ever have imagined. He researches constantly, which improves the quality of life of every person around him. His patients and staff all get to benefit from the things he says every single day. He is knowledgeable about so much more than nutrition which makes every day a learning opportunity. To say I appreciate the opportunities to learn from him is an understatement.

I am so appreciative of my patients and what I learn from them each day. I learn about new foods, recipes, products, and what is helping them. I listen to their experiences and discover more about how to help others. Connections between people are so valuable. Thank you for making me better, stronger, and more capable as a Practitioner.

Finally, I am grateful for the tools we use in this office. We use supplements to help the body with nutritional deficiencies, toxicity, and immune challenges. And, we recommend other devices for healing. 

Some of my favorites supplements for this time of year: 

  • Vitamin C (example: Camu Camu Vitamin C) to keep your immune system healthy and adrenals (one of our stress handling organs) and heart strong. 
  • Vitamin D (example: Solray D) for immune system, heart, bone, and brain health.
  • Quercetin (example: D Hist  or Quercetin Phytosome) to help with the immune system, inflammation, allergy symptoms, and more.
  • Zinc (Zinc Chelate) to help the immune system, hormone balance, and healing.

Recently, we have been recommending a Nebulizer for many people. This is a tool that can be used with distilled water and hydrogen peroxide (or Hydroxygen from CellCore Biosciences) to help with breathing problems, sinus congestion, and headaches. Here is a link to a nebulizer:

I have more people and things in my life to be grateful for that I didn’t list in this article. I appreciate all of you for your support and inspiration. I am going to continue my thankfulness journey. I hope today and every day you can find something to be thankful for that gives you hope for a brighter, healthier future. I am here to help any way I can.

Gratefully Yours in health,

Kerry Cradit, B.S. Nutrition and Food Science

Kerry Cradit, B.S. Nutrition & Food Science Bio

Migraine Headaches: A Good Place To Start

Migraine Headaches: A Good Place To Start

Daily Headaches and Migraines Every Week

I started having debilitating migraine headaches when I was 7 years old. They continued to get worse as the years went on. By the time I was 28, I was having daily headaches and AT LEAST 4 severe migraines a week. I was starting to wonder how I could keep working (and well, living) that way. My quality of life was in the toilet.  


It took me 25 years, but I finally figured out that the Diet Coke I loved, and ALL artificial sweeteners, were a huge trigger for my headaches and migraines. Other triggers I noticed were bright lights, focusing on objects in motion, lack of sleep, and stress. 

In 2010, when I started working at the NHCAA and learning about holistic health, I started paying attention to feedback from my body like never before. Dietary changes were definitely helping my headaches. I was having headaches less often and less severely. When I got a headache, I would get muscle tested and a pattern emerged; wearing metal jewelry, bobby pins and even headbands were affecting my headaches. JEWELRY!  

A Start of Headache Relief

I begrudgingly reduced my use of jewelry and was feeling better but was still wearing it on special occasions. I started noticing that wearing earrings always seemed to be an issue. I would start getting a headache, remember my earrings, take them off, and then recover. I also had this phenomenon with metal necklaces and other metallic jewelry.

I haven’t worn earrings in years. My piercings are completely closed now. I also wore little to no jewelry most of the time. About 5 years ago, I was on a cruise that stopped in Curaçao. I bought the necklace I’m wearing in this picture from a local vendor that handmade it herself. NO METAL! Just string, wood, and shell. No headaches! I felt like I hit the jewelry jackpot for less than $20. Luckily, now that I have done more healing, I can get away with wearing a greater variety of jewelry and some high-quality metal on occasion.  

Keep A Log

If you are trying to discover what causes migraine headaches, I highly recommend that you keep a migraine log. With a migraine log, you can start isolating triggers and patterns – be them food, sleep habits, environment, or even clothing. In this way, you can be your own health detective. 

Migraines can be a complex condition to tackle. There are often many layers to migraines such as gut health, food sensitivities, hormonal imbalances, and toxicity. Even so, you CAN be migraine free. Healing takes patience and persistence, but I’ve helped hundreds of patients to achieve this. Together, we can solve your health puzzle.

Amanda Childress,
Holistic PharmD