Thrive in a Toxic World: Your Guide to Reducing Environmental Toxin Exposure

Fusion IFM certified Health Coach Cortney Goodstadt provides real-world guidance to minimize daily toxin exposure.

By Cortney Goodstadt, DPT, AFMHC

Take a moment and think about our food supply, the products you use to clean your home, the products and cosmetics you place on your skin, and the general environment and air that you breathe in your home and office.

If you’re like me, you might feel a little disgusted now. Furthermore, you may be struggling with health issues due to toxin exposure and not even realize the symptoms. It is essential to understand the specific toxins we commonly encounter and how to remedy the exposure to live longer, healthier and happier lives.

Humans create many environmental toxins, but others occur naturally in the environment–

Examples:

Man-Made Toxins                   Naturally Occurring Toxins

Phthalates                                             Mercury

BPA                                                        Formaldehyde

Pesticides                                              Cadmium

                                                               Lead

                                                               Radon

                                                               Benzene

                                                               Arsenic

These toxins have four distinct entry methods into the body:

  • Skin
  • Inhalation
  • Digestion
  • Injection

Once encountered, the body has various ways of handling or metabolizing the objectionable toxin. This reaction often varies, depending on how long you have been exposed to the noxious substance.

Brief or mild environmental toxin exposure

Being exposed to toxins for a short period of time can have somewhat negative, yet in the scheme of life, mild consequences. These may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Cough and sneezing
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Skin irritation
  • Throat and nose irritation

Long-term toxic environment exposure

Long-term exposure to toxins is incredibly unhealthy. Many short-term effects of exposure begin to take hold and can present as complex and more serious physical conditions. As exposure continues, the damage it causes can result in chronic disease and have permanent physical effects.

Toxins can affect the body by disrupting the endocrine system and can become carcinogenic. Those toxins that disrupt the endocrine system interfere with the body’s ability to produce hormones and participate in cell signaling. This can negatively affect the reproductive, immune, and neurological systems.

Additionally, it may alter a person’s behavior and personality. In children, it can cause issues with development. Possible effects may include (but are not limited to) obesity, aggressive behavior, hormone-dependent cancers such as breast and prostate, infertility, early-onset puberty, low sperm and testosterone, increased risk of diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, lung cancer, Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders.

READ: “Five Reasons You Need a Functional Health Coach”

Actionable steps for environmental toxin protection

As a mom and health coach, I am shocked by this information and want to educate others on making simple yet actionable lifestyle changes to affect your health and save our planet. Here are some things that you can do to make a difference.

Here are simple and achievable action items to reduce everyday toxins and protect yourself and your loved ones:

1. Reduce exposure as much as possible to decrease your risk of adverse health effects.

2. Remove toxins from your home and your skin:

  • Use green cleaning products (be aware that some products that market themselves as “toxic-free” or “clean” are not! Read the labels.)
  • Replace candles and air fresheners with essential oils.
  • Add plants to your home to create cleaner air.
  • Use natural skincare and makeup.
  • Replace non-stick cookware.
  • Avoid using the microwave whenever possible.
  • Reduce the use of plastics.
  • Leave footwear outside or by the entrance to your home.
  • Use a dehumidifier to reduce mildew or mold.
  • Consider an air purifier.
  • Filter and remineralize drinking water.

3. Remove toxins from your diet:

  • Reduce refined seed and vegetable oils.
  • Eliminate foods stored in plastic as they may disrupt hormone function.
  • Eliminate foods with trans fats.
  • Eat organic foods whenever possible.
  • Avoid buying and consuming sugar-laden foods and beverages.
  • Eat certified organic and grass-fed meats and wild-caught fish.
  • Eliminate processed foods.

READ: “Harness the Healing Powers of Grounding”

Reducing environmental toxins: Committing to living safer and disease-free

While it is difficult and nearly impossible to live a full, toxic-free lifestyle — as the air we breathe is full of pollutants —choose to make small changes to minimize toxins you can control in daily life.

Unfortunately, in traditional health and wellness, environmental toxins are an overlooked piece of the wellness puzzle, but our Fusion IFM team is dedicated to helping our patients live as toxin-free as possible in today’s world.

Allow me to help lead the way as you build a healthier future for you and your family.

Let’s get started!

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To learn more about improving and protecting your lifelong health, schedule a Free Discovery Session with Cortney or one of our certified functional medicine health coaches. Learn more about the conditions we treat here: https://fusionifm.com/services/.

Patient Review: Fusion Functional Medicine Services

We are deeply appreciative when our patients take the time and effort to leave a review about our Functional Medicine services on Google and other patient satisfaction sites. Last week, we were delighted to receive this review from Jane, who has been with us since 2020.

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Jessica Miller, MD

I have been working with Dr. Jessica Miller since 2020 and I fully believe in the value of functional medicine and having a dedicated practitioner who will spend a full hour following up with you – not something you will find with most primary care physicians practicing conventional medicine.

Functional medicine provides a different approach in that it looks for root causes of disease instead of treating symptoms. Instead of putting a band-aid over the problem, Dr. Miller will use her extensive knowledge to suggest the underlying mechanism for the symptoms and will then prescribe targeted therapies to address the imbalances that may be present.

If you’ve been through the conventional medical system and have seen numerous doctors and haven’t made any progress with your health, I would fully recommend seeking out an alternative approach and seeing if Dr. Miller and her team can help.

Dr. Miller combines her passion for functional medicine with empathy and compassion for her patients, as she seeks to support the health of the whole individual. In between appointments with Dr. Miller, there is the option of meeting with a health coach in more frequent intervals to make sure you are staying on track with your health goals.

A health coach can be helpful to address any specific, smaller concerns such as questions about supplements or alternatives, questions about specific exercises, or even certain foods or diets. For me this has been a great experience.

Cortney Goodstadt, DPT, AFMHC

Health Coach Cortney Goodstadt has a calm and centered approach and a determination to bring unique solutions to each individual patient and meeting with her helps me feel on track with my health goals and makes me feel like I have a constant supporter in my corner who is rooting for me to take care of myself every day.

She will listen to your concerns and do research after your appointment to bring you suggestions on everything:

  • Diet
  • Exercise
  • Sleep
  • Supplements
  • Emotional/mental support
  • Gathering patient-specific resources

Cortney is invaluable to discussing what health strategies worked, so I can continue to feel better and get stronger.

READ: “Five Reasons Why You Should Work with a Functional Health Coach” By Cortney Goodstadt

The great thing about functional medicine is that it grows with you. It is directed by your health goals and what are your most bothersome symptoms. They will start from there and begin the work of suggesting possible ways to improve your health and your life. Supplements are just one part of functional medicine and they can be highly supportive in many cases. But they aren’t the only healing modality that will be suggested to you.

I also like that you can pause your appointments at any time. The functional medicine practitioners, doctors and health coaches will not do the work for you – it’s up to you to use the resources they suggest, work on your health every day.

This is a very different approach and it’s important for people to understand that taking care of yourself is a lot of work–and it’s ultimately up to you. Having Dr. Miller and health coaches like Cortney to support me in my health journey has been one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Jane Frank |  Fusion IFM Google Review  |  May 2024

Jaclyn’s Journey to Better Gut Health with Nurse Practitioner Dr. Alexandra Davidson

Alexandra Davidson, DNP, APRN, FNP-C

Jaclyn Ross, a 41-year-old teacher, battled years of chronic gut problems that not only affected her physical health but also took a toll on her mental well-being. The relentless nature of her symptoms left her feeling frustrated and trapped in a negative mindset. After failed treatment courses with traditional doctors, she was referred to Alexandra Davidson, DNP, APRN, FNP-C, at Fusion Integrative & Functional Medicine in Marlboro, NJ.

Reflecting on her initial consultation, Jaclyn recalls Dr. Alex’s proactive approach to her health struggles: “After studying my New Patient Questionnaire and lab test results, Dr. Alex had a treatment plan ready at my first visit with her,” Jaclyn recalls.

Transitioning to a tailored functional medicine treatment plan

Dr. Alex’s integrative treatment plan encompassed a holistic approach, combining targeted supplements with dietary adjustments tailored to her specific needs. “She prescribed a number of supplements and helped me change my diet,” Jaclyn shares, highlighting the comprehensive nature of her treatment plan.

But her health journey didn’t stop there. Recognizing the importance of nutrition in healing her gut, Dr. Alex recommended Jacklyn see Fusion Functional Nutritionist Brianna Manginelli, MS, CNS, LDN, DSS, to use food as another gut-healing mechanism. With Brianna’s expertise, she gained invaluable insights into optimizing her nutrition plan to support digestive health and her body’s health ecosystem. (She also lost 10 pounds in the process.)

“Brianna introduced me to a wider menu of foods and meals that also keep my gut health in check, which is invaluable to me. No one wants to eat the same thing all the time.”

Personalized care for improved gut and holistic health

“Until I met Alexandra and Brianna, I felt more like a number than a person in the traditional medicine arena,” Jaclyn notes. “It’s very meaningful to receive a health treatment plan developed with your unique medical history in mind.”

Through the collaborative efforts of Dr. Alexandra Davidson and Nutritionist Brianna Manganielli, she experienced a remarkable improvement in her health. By addressing the root causes of her gut problems and implementing personalized interventions, Jaclyn regained control over her mental and physical health and vitality.

Resolving chronic GI issues and improving mental outlook

Jaclyn’s story serves as a real-life testament to the transformative power of functional medicine in overcoming chronic health challenges. It underscores the importance of individualized treatment with an integrated approach that supports the interconnectedness of body, mind and spirit.

This patient’s journey exemplifies how embracing alternative approaches, such as functional medicine, can lead to profound healing, renewed vitality and a return to a thriving quality of life.

“From my perspective as a patient, working with functional medicine healthcare providers has taught me invaluable tools that I will use for the rest of my life, particularly how I look at the actual purpose of food,” Jaclyn notes. “I never realized that food can be used for healing and offsetting symptoms—no prescription medications required!”


To meet with our Integrative and Functional Health experts to improve your overall health or manage a chronic health condition, call our team at 732-631-4410 or email us at info@fusionifm.com for a prompt appointment.

5 Reasons Why You Need a Functional Medicine Health Coach

By Cortney Goodstadt, DPT, AFMHC

If you’ve been on a journey to reclaim your health, you’ve likely encountered various approaches and professionals. From conventional doctors to alternative practitioners, the options can be overwhelming. Working with a Functional Medicine Health Coach can offer a unique and comprehensive list of integrative health benefits. Below, I’ve outlined five essential reasons why health coaching, particularly with someone specially trained in functional medicine, could be the missing piece in your holistic health puzzle.

1. Personalized Guidance Tailored to You

Imagine having a knowledgeable ally by your side, guiding you through the intricate maze of health optimization. With a health coach, specifically one trained in functional medicine, you gain 1:1 personalized health optimization guidance and recommendations tailored to your bio-individual body’s needs. This personalized approach ensures that you receive targeted guidance, maximizing the effectiveness of your health journey.

2. Cost-Effective Prevention

In today’s healthcare landscape, prevention is not just preferable, it’s often more cost-effective than treating illness once it arises. By addressing the root causes and underlying factors at play for symptoms or disease, you can avoid costly medical interventions in the future.

3. Enhanced Quality of Life

For people grappling with chronic conditions, like gut health issues or autoimmune disorders, improving quality of life is paramount. Functional Medicine Health Coaches possess a deep understanding of the interconnectedness of the body, allowing them to address all facets of your health history. By piecing together the intricate puzzle of your health, we empower you to make targeted lifestyle changes that positively impact your well-being for the short- and long-term.

4. Sustainable Results

Unlike quick-fix band-aid solutions that provide temporary relief, a health coach equips you with the knowledge and tools for lasting change to protect your health against future disease risks. By elucidating the “why” behind your health struggles and crafting a sustainable plan, we empower you to take ownership and control of your health journey, rather than leaving it in the hands of traditional medicine.

5. Holistic Well-Being Optimization

Finally, a Functional Medicine Health Coach goes beyond symptom management to strengthen overall well-being. We promote vitality and resilience by focusing on controllable lifestyle factors that support healing rather than merely masking symptoms. With increased energy, reduced inflammation, and enhanced vitality, you’ll experience a newfound appreciation for the gift of good health. From personalized guidance to sustainable results, our goal is to provide you with the ammunition to defend your health for life! 

Why We Could All Use a Health Coach (Jane Brody – NYT)

Call 732-631-4410 or email info@fusionifm.com to schedule a free discovery session with certified health coach Cortney Goodstadt.

Health Benefits of Grounding

By Brianna Manginelli, MS, CNS, LDN, DSS

Connect with the Earth to Harness Its Proven Healing Power!

Grounding, or earthing is the practice of connecting with the Earth’s electrical energy by placing your feet directly on the ground outdoors (barefoot), sitting or lying on the ground, and [with modern technology] accessing the benefits through indoor grounding devices.

Today, we are exposed to unnatural amounts of EMF/radiation which can disrupt cell health and function by increasing the production of free radicals. These can damage cells and DNA, as well as alter the permeability of cell membranes.

The Earth’s surface has a negative electrical potential. Making direct contact with the Earth through your bare feet or body can help you absorb electrical energy to mitigate some of the negative exposures. Furthermore, the time spent inside and the barrier produced between our body and the Earth by wearing shoes leaves us more deficient in this natural source of healing energy than our ancestors.

Backed by Research

Recent research suggests that connecting with the Earth’s surface electrons may have positive effects on inflammation, immune response, wound healing, and the prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases (Oschman et al., 2015). It has also been associated with decreased RBC aggregation, thereby reducing blood viscosity, which is a major factor in cardiovascular disease (Chevalier et al., 2012).

Additionally, it may enhance muscle recovery after intense exercise. One study found that grounding after moderate eccentric contractions reduced muscle damage (Brown et al., 2015).

Other benefits include the potential for improved sleep, reduced pain, and reduced stress levels. A pilot study on grounding during sleep showed changes in cortisol levels and subjective reporting of sleep quality, pain, and stress. Reduced night-time levels of cortisol and resynchronization of cortisol hormone secretion in alignment with the natural 24-hour circadian rhythm profile were observed (Ghaly & Teplitz, 2004).

Although more research is needed to fully understand the long-term effects of grounding, these findings highlight its potential as a simple, FREE, and non-invasive way to promote overall health and well-being.

Now go out and connect with the Earth!

If you want to learn more, here is an additional education suggestion: https://www.earthingmovie.com/

https://www.earthingmovie.com

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We look forward to meeting with you and helping to boost your health in 2024!

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