Monday, December 28, 2015

Stroke From Chiropractic Adjustment? The Evidence Says No

More Evidence That Disputes The Accusation of Chiropractic Neck Manipulation Causing Vertebral Artery Dissection Stroke.

As long as I have been a chiropractic physician I’ve heard the stories. A patient suffering a stroke at the hands of a chiropractor. Whenever the major newspapers are having a slow news week, you’ll see an article about this subject rehashing the same old rhetoric. However the fear instilled in a patient from news stories and other biased sources is something the chiropractic physicians face weekly in practice. 

A recent study took a different approach comparing the risks of VBA stroke (vertebral basilar artery) of patients visiting a chiropractic physician and their primary care physician. Interestingly there was more of an association between VBA stroke with PCP visit vs a visit with the chiropractor. Furthermore, it was found that in 1/3 of the VBA stroke cases associated with the chiropractic visit, neck manipulation was not performed. The authors of the study concluded:

We found no significant association between exposure to chiropractic care and the risk of VBAstroke. We conclude that manipulation is an unlikely cause of VBA stroke. The positive association between PCP visits and VBA stroke is most likely due to patient decisions to seek care for the symptoms (headache and neck pain) of arterial dissection.1

From this study it seems that people are visiting their chiropractic or primary care physicians because of symptoms associated with having a stroke (headaches and neck pain as the artery is in the process of dissection) and not being caused as a result of something the chiropractic or primary care physician did.  

This study's findings correlate with previous studies by Cassidy et. al, that report very low risk of VBA stroke association with chiropractic neck manipulation supporting a higher level of safety for patients with neck pain and headaches. The media as well as other biased groups would have the general public believe otherwise.

As research is showing us there is less of a causal relationship between neck manipulation and stroke, rather an association of patients seeking treatment from their MD or DC with symptoms of a stroke presenting as neck pain, upper back pain and headaches. These patients are literally walking into the doctor's office with a dissecting VBA stroke in progress. 

Dr. Todd Narson


1. Chiropr Man Therap. 2015 Jun 16;23:19. doi: 10.1186/s12998-015-0063-x. eCollection 2015.
Chiropractic care and the risk of vertebrobasilar stroke: results of a case-control study in U.S. commercial and Medicare Advantage populations.Kosloff TM1, Elton D1, Tao J2, Bannister WM2.

2. BMJ Case Rep. 2015 Nov 12;2015. pii: bcr2015212568. doi: 10.1136/bcr-2015-212568. Vertebral artery dissection in evolution found during chiropractic examination. Futch D1, Schneider MJ2, Murphy D3, Grayev A4.

3. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2011 Jan;34(1):15-22. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2010.11.001.A population-based case-series of Ontario patients who develop a vertebrobasilar artery stroke after seeing a chiropractor. Choi S1, Boyle E, Côté P, Cassidy JD.

4. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2009 Feb;32(2 Suppl):S201-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2008.11.020.
Risk of vertebrobasilar stroke and chiropractic care: results of a population-based case-control and case-crossover study. Cassidy JD1, Boyle E, Côté P, He Y, Hogg-Johnson S, Silver FL, Bondy SJ.

5. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2009 Feb;32(2 Suppl):S194-200. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2008.11.019.
Examining vertebrobasilar artery stroke in two Canadian provinces. Boyle E1, Côté P, Grier AR, Cassidy JD.

6. Spine J. 2002 Sep-Oct;2(5):334-42. Clinical perceptions of the risk of vertebral artery dissection after cervical manipulation: the effect of referral bias. Haldeman S1, Carey P, Townsend M, Papadopoulos C.

Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Friday, December 18, 2015

CONCUSSION - Increase Neck Strength To Reduce Risk of Concussion

Strengthen Your Neck – Reduce Your Risk For Concussion

With Will Smith’s new movie CONCUSSION coming out, parents concern for their children’s safety in high impact sports is growing. As their concern grows, fear grows in the NFL that this movie and the condition it’s named after could have serious impact on the sport of football and open up a can of liability worms that they wanted to keep covered up. But there is good news.

According to several studies, increasing the strength of your neck can reduce the risk of concussion. One study specifically states for every one pound increase in neck strength, odds of concussion decreased by 5% 1.   Concussion can occur from a direct blow to the head or due to a phenomenon called “contre-coup”.  A direct blow causing direct impact and inflammation or the contrecoup where the body takes a hit and the head lags behind the momentum-striking one side of the skull, then after momentum shifts the other way, the brain rebounds and strikes the other side of the skull.  

A direct blow is more obvious. A boxer strikes his opponent in the head causing the injury to the brain or a football player takes a direct blow to the head. However in the contrecoup, the concussion is less obvious to those unfamiliar. The athlete takes a blow to the body, the body suddenly changes direction while the head and neck lag behind. This is when the first brain-to-skull impact occurs. The brain strikes the inside of the head because the body just shifted direction and the brain is literally floating inside the skull. Then, as the momentum catches up to the change in motion, the brain strikes the opposite side of the skull as the whipping motion stops. This can occur when one player collides into the body another, it can happen if you slip and fall or if you get into a car accident.

Think about shaking a walnut in the shell. Every time the walnut hits the inside of the shell-think about your brain hitting the inside of your skull. With each strike, the brain gets bruised and inflamed. The more inflammation-the more damage.

Increased muscle strength plays an important role in slowing down the momentum of the head/neck caused by the impact trauma. Stronger necks = less severe concussion.  Why? Because the stronger the neck muscles are the more they resist the contrecoup whipping motion.  This is why evaluating neck strength should be a part of every child’s pre-season assessment and neck strengthening should be part of every coach’s pre-season strength and conditioning program.

The question is, how do you strengthen your neck? There are numerous ways. First, get an examination of the neck to make sure it is stable and there are no underlying issues. Next, complete a baseline SCAT (Sports Concussion Assessment Tool) evaluation. It’s important to have a SCAT completed pre-season in case  a concussion occurs during the season, there is a baseline to compare it to so the athletic trainer or team physician can make appropriate decisions on the athlete's behalf.

In my opinion, neck strengthening should consist of base strength (just get those muscles strong) and functional strength. Functional strength is increasing muscle strength and coordination in such a way as those muscles are used in real life.  These are programs I do with my athlete patients as well as those patients with post whiplash trauma, recovering from neck surgery rehab patients and anyone suffering from the effects of herniated or bulging discs. Neck strength and stability can go a long way to aid your recovery. And, in light of recent research, to help mitigate the effects of a concussion.

Feel free to contact me to discuss a neck strengthening program that’s right for you.

Dr. Todd Narson
Diplomate of the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physicians


1.     Neck strength: a protective factor reducing risk for concussion in high school sports. Collins CL, Fletcher EN, Fields SK, Kluchurosky L, Rohrkemper MK, Comstock RD, Cantu RC. J Prim Prev. 2014 Oct;35(5):309-19. doi: 10.1007/s10935-014-0355-2.

2.     The influence of cervical muscle characteristics on head impact biomechanics in football. Schmidt JD, Guskiewicz KM, Blackburn JT, Mihalik JP, Siegmund GP, Marshall SW. Am J Sports Med. 2014 Sep;42(9):2056-66. doi: 10.1177/0363546514536685. Epub 2014 Jun 13.

3.     Effect of neck muscle strength and anticipatory cervical muscle activation on the kinematic response of the head to impulsive loads. Eckner JT, Oh YK, Joshi MS, Richardson JK, Ashton-Miller JA. Am J Sports Med. 2014 Mar;42(3):566-76. doi: 10.1177/0363546513517869. Epub 2014 Jan 31.

4.     What are the most effective risk-reduction strategies in sportconcussion?Benson BW, McIntosh AS, Maddocks D, Herring SA, Raftery M, Dvorák J. Br J Sports Med. 2013 Apr;47(5):321-6. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2013-092216. Review


Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Friday, December 11, 2015

5 Steps To Surviving The Holidays Without Busting Your Belt!

I want you to know you can survive the holiday season without missing out –AND- not messing up your healthy eating game plan.

Guilt can be a strong emotion. Ultimately, in one form or another you will succumb to the guilt. So why not plan for it rather than be controlled by it? It’s ok to eat a food you desire as long as it’s not being done regularly. When you do something on a regular basis (sit on the couch, exercise, eat poorly, eat healthfully) you are telling your body to adapt to whatever it is that you are doing do it regularly. This can be good or it can be bad.  So if you don’t make it a regular thing, you may be able to enjoy some holiday fare and not bust your belt and have to start from scratch on January 1st.

There’s no reason you can’t enjoy whatever you desire to eat at a holiday party. That is, as long as you don’t have an allergy, food sensitivity or autoimmunity to it-or you are diabetic. If that’s the case, well, you know your limits-deal with it. You know the consequences. But otherwise, you’ve worked hard to improve and maintain your health so here are my 5 tips on how to survive the holiday parties with your belt, waistline and health intact.
So here we go:

1.      Eat before you go.  I know going out to a holiday party is all about the food, the friends and the fun.  And trust me; there will be plenty of food there. However if your blood sugar is on an even keel, then you don’t have to worry about being so hungry when you get there that you devour everything in your way. Eat some good protein and healthy fats before you go and you’ll get a long term benefit that allows you to pick and choose your party food without being ruled by your hormones!  You remember how hormones ruled you as a teenager, although these are different hormones, they’re just as powerful.

2.      Fiber filled foods fill you up; Fiber filled foods such as carrot sticks can fill you up fast and last quite a while as your gut takes the time to break them down. When you arrive at the party and you’re still satisfied from eating before you left the house, start with some veggies to maintain what you started at home.
3.      Protein packs a punch; No doubt, there will be cocktail shrimp, turkey, ham, roast beef, chicken, etc. Those with allergies and sensitivities please be careful with the sauces and dips (know your ingredients). But protein packs a punch of calories and having a few ounces every couple hours will go a long way in keeping your blood sugar even and your hormones at bay.

4.      Think before you drink; if you have food allergies, sensitivities or auto-immunities, then make sure you know what was fermented to make your drink of choice. Moonshine most often comes from corn, Vodka from potatoes, beer has gluten grains, wine is from grapes and so on…Choose wisely. Don't drink and drive. 

5.      Your just desserts!  Desserts. Ah, the best for last and probably the reason you’re reading this post. Other than ingredients that may play on you food sensitivities, allergies and auto-immunities, realize it has sugar and is gonna taste fantastic. Eating dessert for some people isthe party. Look over those desserts, choose the 1 or 2 items that for you are totally over the top and remember that this is one of the reasons you eat healthfully and workout like a fiend. Don’t feel guilty, just enjoy it. The fact that you’ve planned it and that you’ve kept your blood sugar steady means you (hopefully) won’t overdo it when it comes to desserts.   

Guilt causes stress and stress (for the most part) is bad. So if you’re gonna eat something to satisfy your taste buds, just get back on track with your next meal and hit the gym the next morning. You’ll be back on track without missing a stride like nothing ever happened.

Oh, when you're at the party, talk to someone. Get into a conversation. As you do, you'll engage your brain into something other than the food. Hey, that's really why we're there anyway, isn't it?

Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas & Happy New Year.  And, for those special folks, Happy Festivus! 

Yours in Health,

Dr. Todd M Narson
·         Diplomate of the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physician
·         USA Triathlon Certified Coach

Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. Dr. Narson is an active triathlete and triathlon coach. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Coaching The Coach: My Road To The 2015 Miami Ironman 70.3

Coaching The Coach
My Road To The 2015 Miami Ironman 70.3

So as many of your know for my 45th birthday I decided to challenge myself to my first triathlon. There’s an entire story behind how this guy (me) that absolutely hated running, did a sports where the most grueling part happens to be running.   Since the very early days in my career as a sports chiropractor I worked in the medical tents at local triathlons. Now that I had set my sights on actually doing a triathlon, I figured that after I was done I would simply settle back into my former life and keep trekking through life. But no, something happened when I crossed the finish line for the first time. As it is said in the triathlon world - I got bit by the “triathlon bug”. There was an incredible sense of accomplishment and an incredible sense of disappointment that it had all come to an end-both at the same time. Talk about mixed emotion.

OK, so I was now hooked. If you’re going to get addicted to something, triathlon is a good thing to get addicted to. I signed up for more triathlons, joined a local triathlon club and with open arms I welcomed the triathlon life style.  To date, I’ve done 13 triathlons. Mostly sprint distance, a couple “hybrid” distances and 2 Olympic distance triathlons.  Now it’s 5 years later and decided to give myself yet another triathlon challenge for my upcoming 50th birthday.  The challenge-The 2015 Miami Ironman 70.3.  For those that aren’t into triathlon, this is also known as a ½-Ironman or ‘½-IM’.  

Stella took 1st Place in her Age Group!!!  And I PR'd!!!
RUN HELP. This year started out pretty cool for me. I was training for the South Beach tri and I happened to bump into a friend of mine that I haven’t seen in a while, Stella Shalem. Stella is a running coach and personal trainer from Brazil and now lives here in Miami Beach.  After running together once, she decided that I needed help with my running and invited me to join some of her friends and running clients to her run-coaching group. She taught me there’s more to a track than going around in circles and more to a bridge than going up and over repeatedly.

I learned proper run form, how to make a true workout out of a track and a bridge and use these tools to develop stronger running technique, speed, aerobic capacity and economy. She taught me proper warm ups and drills prior to the main running workout of the day.  She was critical to helping me through the 2015 South Beach Olympic distance triathlon and she even came out there to run along side me in the blistering sun.  Stella is a great running coach and someone that walks her walk and talks her talk. She eats & cooks healthy, thinks positively, motivates you constantly and trains hard & smart.  This girl loves to run which is evidenced not only by her work ethics, but further emphasized by the bumper sticker on the back of her car which reads: “Yes, I run like a girl-try to keep up” (and I never could!). She coached me through my first official 5k and to a personal 5k record. This was my first experience as an athlete with a coach, but it would not be my last.

Because I was a sports chiropractor and a triathlete, other triathletes began to seek me out. I was told countless times “you understand what I’m going through”-or- “you get me” -or- “you get it”. And, they were right-I did.  Several of my triathlete patients kept telling me they wanted me to meet their coach. The same name kept coming up time and time again. Erinne Guthrie of Full CircleCoaching.  "You’ve got to meet her” is what I heard over and over again from my patients.

We eventually met and after getting to know each other, she invited me to participate and speak at her 2015-“Ultimate Triathlete Training Camp” at the National Training Center in Clermont, FL. The training camp was quite comprehensive, technical and a lot of fun. I learned a lot as a triathlete and started to see how much more technical and specific training for a triathlon can be.  There was a ton of cycling, swim training and running in the mornings and lectures in the afternoons. If you’re a triathlete, training camp is definitely something to put on your radar for next season. Plus, it’s camp -who doesn’t like to go to camp?  What I discovered at camp was I was merely exercising on the swim, bike and run. Training was an entirely different approach.

I became curious as to how I could help coaches help their athletes by better understanding the triathlon coaching process. I signed up for a USA Triathlon coaching level 1 certification course and I have to say it was one of the more informative classes I’ve ever taken.  Of course, I had a much higher level of understanding with a sports medicine background than most in the class, so the information meant more to me at a different level.  As the various USAT coaches spoke, in my head I was already applying the information to improve my examination methods, treatment methods and rehab techniques.

It was during the weekend USAT coaching course and the exam process that followed that I realized how much help I really need as a triathlete. I mean, I could purchase a training plan on line and train myself, but knowing what I know about sports medicine and now armed with my new triathlon coaching knowledge and certification, I realized I had quite a few flaws in my swimming, cycling and running that needed to be fixed. If I was going to be training 6 days per week, sometimes twice per day, 1-3 hours per day, I knew I needed to improve my bio-mechanics quickly. Poor biomechanics done repetitively over a long period of time means only one thing – Injury!

IM 70.3 -- 1st official day of training
So I signed up and committed myself to the Miami IM 70.3 October 25th, 2015 and called Full Circle Coaching founder, Coach Erinne Guthrie to help me map out a plan to get across the finish line strong and uninjured. So with that, I signed up for a Training Peaks account, linked it up to Full Circle Coaching’s coaching account and BAM!-My training schedule from coach Erinne magically appeared!! So July 1st, just 2 days prior to my 50th birthday I started. Right from the get go I received some great encouragement while being informed I have some improvements to make (she must have read the book The One Minute Manager).   

Although I was a fast sprinter in the pool, many areas of my swimming technique needed tweaking (that was being kind) and Coach Erinne was able to pick out every flaw.  And, I knew she was right. It wasn’t the kind of swim workout I was expecting, but it certainly was the swim training I needed. I was able to see some results right away and knew that others would take time to master. 

Over the next 4 months I will let you into my world of training for my first “long course triathlon” by blogging my progress with Full Circle Coaching, coach Erinne Guthrie and her other tri-coaching clients.  The only thing I ask of you is this: when you see me or other people cycling while your driving along south Florida roadways, please slow down and give us some room. Trust me, you’ll get to your destination on time-we just want to get to our destination alive.

Healthfully yours

Dr. Todd Narson 
Diplomate, American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physicians
USA Triathlon-Level 1 Coach 

Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Rest & Recovery - The Most Difficult Part of Your Training Plan

Do you want to get bigger, better, stronger, faster and more fit? Then take a load off. Literally.

As a chiropractic physician credentialed in sports medicine, I've seen my fair share of athletes and 'wannabe' athletes over the years. There's no doubt that exercise and training is a good thing but there is a point where you can do yourself harm. Typically it's the pampered housewife that goes to 2 hours of aerobics classes 7 days/week and works out with a trainer.  They come to me at some point down the road when they start getting little pesky injuries, they feel like they're working harder and getting less accomplished and just fail to see the correlation between exercising 7 days/week and their injuries and poor performance.

Today happens to be a Wednesday. As a triathlete and triathlon coach, my training plan designates Wednesday as "Rest-Recuperation & Adaptation Day".  It's actually a written part of my plan. It's also a written part of the training plan the coaches I work with use for their athletes. Why?

Although it's psychologically difficult for athletes, rest is a necessary part of the training plan because it is when your body adapts to the stresses of the exercises and training that you do. That's why it's not just called a rest day, or recovery day, but rest, recovery and adaptation. Although  you want to get back out there and hit the gym or do one more day of training, what you really need is to take it easy and work on your mental game while your body makes the changes you've been asking it to with your training.

If you don't, you're asking for a breakdown.  When will it happen? Good question. But, it will happen, probably at the most inopportune time.

A rest, recovery and adaptation day should be a specific written part of your training plan.

Here's what my plan looks like for my rest/recovery/adaptation day:

  • Rest
  • Chiropractic Adjustment
  • Normatec Compression Boots (thigh, lower leg, feet)
  • StretchZone Stretch Session ( 
  • Hydration
  • Massage
  • Contrast baths
  • Pool floating
  • Meditation & visualization

Rest, recovery and adaptation is the basis of periodization training. This type of training has been shown to improve an athlete's performance of his or her competitors that don't periodize their training. It's the specific reason the Russians were kicking out butts at the Olympics for the longest time. They used periodization training for all their sports and it paid off big time. And a specific part of that plan is a planned day off.

Rest/recovery/adaptation day is a great day to review your workout plan, catch up on your office work and errands, prepare meals for the week or get some reading done. But whatever you do, take a break because your body needs to adapt to the changes you've been trying to achieve with your exercise and training.

Try to get your head wrapped around the concept that rest after a block of exercise is the part of your training plan that actually helps you get bigger, better, stronger, faster and more fit.

Yours in Health

Dr Todd Narson

 #chiropractormiamibeach #MiamiBeachChiropractor #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #DrNarson #TriDoc #TriathlonDoc #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #SportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #SportsMedicineMiami #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiChiropractor #Triathlon #Running #Ironman #IFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #MiamiBeachChiropractor #GrastonTechnique #FAKTR #IASTM #Chiropractor #FootPain #Narson #NarsonBodyMechanic #NarsonTool #DACBSP #CCSP #ACBSP #BackPain #NeckPain #ShoulderPain #RotatorCuff #ITBandSyndrome #runnersKnee #PlantarFasciitis #Plantarfascitis #AchillesTendonitis #AchillesTendonosis #GettingAthletesBackInTheGame  #MiamiBeachChiropractor #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #WeFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #ProSportChiropractic #FunctionalMedicineMiami #DrNarson #BackPainRelief #NeckPainRelief #SportsInjuriesFixedHere


Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Does Food Really Have No Affect On Acne?

When I was 21 I became interested in nutrition. My first book was How To Live Longer And Feel Better by renowned scientist Linus Pauling, PhD. Dr. Pauling was a big advocate of mega-dosing vitamin-C (Linus Pauling was, among other things, famous for outliving all of his critics). By that time had been a couple year out of my teenage years. If you remember your teenage years as I do, beyond sports and school there was acne and visits to the dermatologist.

I remember the dermatologist saying to me on several occasions that what you eat has nothing to do with your acne. For some reason, I didn't believe him. To me, it didn't make sense. But, what the heck did I know-I'm just a kid. Well, about 6 years ago I heard another dermatologist speaking in front of a crowd of interested business men and women. The dermatologist rattled off a lift of foods stating "what of the following foods and your skin have in common? Pizza, chocolate cake, cookies - NOTHING!" The dermatologist said nothing? The answer astonished me. The difference now is I was no longer an uneducated teenager but had a doctorate, had been in practice many years and an avid reader and lecture attendee in the area of nutrition. Here it was 20-something years later and dermatologists as a whole still think there's no correlation between acne, your skin and the foods we eat.

Most people don't realize it but your skin is the largest organ in your body. It's the barrier between our insides and the outside world. People eat some bad food and get indigestion, diarrhea or constipation. People eat too many refined carbohydrates, sugar and trans fats and it clogs up your arteries and raises your blood pressure and leads to heart attacks and strokes. Eating some foods causes your insulin to spike, while some foods cause people to have allergic reaction. Consuming caffeine causes your brain to become more alert. But for some reason the food you eat doesn't have any affect on your skin. Really? Does this make sense to anyone else out there or am I crazy?

When I do nutrition talks to groups and in discussing it with patients, I classify the foods we eat into two main classifications (1) Pro-inflammatory (2) Anti-inflammatory. What are anti-inflammatory foods? Well, we can start with things like Chocolate cake, pizza and french fries (sorry citizens of the world, but it's true). Foods that stray too far from our evolutionary eating promote cellular inflammation. But let's go beyond that.

What creates your skin? The food you eat.
What creates your brain? The food you eat.
What creates your heart? The food you eat.

See where I'm going?

The food you eat are the biochemical constituents that become your body. If you want a healthy brain, eat healthful food. If you want a healthy heart, eat healthful food, want healthier skin, eat healthful food and so on.

Is it always as simple as this? No. But, to categorically deny that the very foods you eat whose biochemical constituents become the organs, cells and tissues of your body has absolutely no affect on the health of your skin is just silly. At the very least, eating an anti-inflammatory diet is certainly THE FIRST place to start. Let's take this one step further, go to your dermatologist to make sure your skin disorder isn't something more serious. But I hope you realize that diet does play a role in the health of your entire body, skin included.

Try eating healthfully for 4 months and see what happens. Just a thought. 

Below are some references from The Dietary Cure For Acne (2006) by Loren Cordain, PhD.

'nuff said.

Dr. T

 #chiropractormiamibeach #MiamiBeachChiropractor #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #DrNarson #TriDoc #TriathlonDoc #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #SportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #SportsMedicineMiami #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiChiropractor #Triathlon #Running #Ironman #IFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #MiamiBeachChiropractor #GrastonTechnique #FAKTR #IASTM #Chiropractor #FootPain #Narson #NarsonBodyMechanic #NarsonTool #DACBSP #CCSP #ACBSP #BackPain #NeckPain #ShoulderPain #RotatorCuff #ITBandSyndrome #runnersKnee #PlantarFasciitis #Plantarfascitis #AchillesTendonitis #AchillesTendonosis #GettingAthletesBackInTheGame  #MiamiBeachChiropractor #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #WeFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #ProSportChiropractic #FunctionalMedicineMiami #DrNarson #BackPainRelief #NeckPainRelief #SportsInjuriesFixedHere
  1. Cordain L, Lindeberg S, Hurtado M, Hill K, Eaton SB, Brand-Miller J. Acne vulgaris: A disease of western civilization. Arch Dermatol 2002; 138:1584-90.
  2. Cordain L, Eades MR, Eades MD. Hyperinsulinemic diseases of civilization: more than just Syndrome X. Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol. 2003 Sep;136(1):95-112. 
  3. Cordain L. Implications for the role of diet in acne. Semin Cutan Med Surg. 2005 Jun;24(2):84-91.
  4. Cordain L. Dietary implications for the development of acne: a shifting paradigm. In: U.S. Dermatology Review II 2006, (Ed.,Bedlow, J). Touch Briefings Publications, London , 2006 ______________________________________________________

Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


First conceptualized by Albert Einstein in 1916, laser technology has been around since 1965 and has been fascinating us whenever or where ever we've see them ever since. In the past couple of decades, laser technology has made some extensive advances and with that, has shed some new light to a new therapeutic approach to treating sports injuries (and many other injuries and conditions).

You must understand that our bodies use light energy in a similar way that plants do. I’m sure you remember photosynthesis from high school biology and how plants turn the sun’s energy into food that the plant survives and thrives on. Well, we have some of that ability too. Like plants, when our body’s tissues are stimulated by specific wavelengths of light, research has shown that our body will have the following physiological effects:
  1. Decreased pain levels
  2. Reduced inflammation
  3. Increased tissue proliferation & regeneration
  4. Accelerated soft tissue and bone repair
  5. Increased tissue tensile strength
  6. Enhanced nerve regeneration & function
  7. Increased cell metabolism
  8. Increased enzymatic responses
  9. Increased cell membrane potentials
  10. Increased microcirculation & vasodilation
  11. Increased lymphatic flow
  12. Increased collagen production
  13. Enhanced angiogenesis (creation of new blood vessels)

So what does this mean you ask??? It means biostimulation of damaged tissue with LASER will cause tissues to heal faster and heal-stronger-faster. It means it can stimulate the regeneration of tissue, reduce inflammation and pain. What does this mean for an injured athlete or the victim of a car accident? Not only faster relief of symptoms, but faster healing of the damaged tissues as well. Not bad for a super-duper flashlight on steriods.

Understand there are 2 basic camps in the laser world; hot lasers and cold lasers. Hot lasers are the kind used for surgery; they cut, they burn, they get hot. Hence the name. Cold lasers (aka LLL or Low Level Lasers) generate laser light which can be in the visible or invisible spectrum but do not generate heat. The cold lasers don’t actually get cold either, they’re only called cold because they don’t get hot. Cold lasers (what I like to call therapeutic lasers) are used to increase the rate of healing damaged tissues, reduce inflammation, reduce pain, increased blood flow and in the case of some therapeutic lasers and red lasers are known to also reduce infection.

Sounds too good to be true right? What are the side effects? Well, there really are none. Just don’t shine them in your (or anyone else’s) eyes because they can burn the retina and blind you; so, always wear safety glasses. Don’t use the laser over the thyroid, nor over a developing baby in the womb during the 1st trimester of pregnancy. Lastly, since therapeutic laser helps increase the rate of tissue healing, do not use it over cancerous growths as it can speed up the rate of the cancer’s growth. Outside of these very specific things; Let There Be Light.

What are the down sides? There has been no research to date that shows cold lasers can hurt any condition. At worst, they’ve only shown that over exposure to cold laser therapy causes a plateau in the rate of improvement. Otherwise, doctors who do see the light are getting incredible results from this simple tool that simply stimulates the body to heal faster. So next time you’re enjoying the Pink Floyd Laser Light Show on a Friday night, ask yourself if your feel any better when you wake up Saturday morning.

So, does your doctor see the light? I know I do.

For more information, you can visit the following:

USA Laser
Laser World

Jan Tuner, Lars Hode; The Laser Therapy Handbook
William Prentice, Therapeutic Modalities in Sports Medicine, Chapter 10, pp 215-238

#chiropractormiamibeach #MiamiBeachChiropractor #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #DrNarson #ToddNarson #Narson #TriDoc #TriathlonDoc #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #SportsMedicine #SportsChiropractor #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #SportsMedicineMiami #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiChiropractor #Triathlon #Running #Ironman #IFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #MiamiBeachChiropractor #GrastonTechnique #FAKTR #IASTM #Chiropractor #FootPain #Narson #NarsonBodyMechanic #NarsonTool #DACBSP #CCSP #ACBSP #BackPain #NeckPain #ShoulderPain #RotatorCuff #ITBandSyndrome #runnersKnee #PlantarFasciitis #Plantarfascitis #AchillesTendonitis #AchillesTendonosis #GettingAthletesBackInTheGame  #MiamiBeachChiropractor #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #WeFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #ProSportChiropractic #FunctionalMedicineMiami #DrNarson #BackPainRelief #NeckPainRelief #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #LaserTherapy #RockTape #KinesioTape #KTTape #Nutrition #21DayPurificationProgram #DetoxProgram #PaleoDiet #PaleoDoc #FunctionalNutrition #Chirooractor #Chiropractic #ChiropracticPhysician #DoctorOfChiropractic #GrastonTechnique #IASTM #FAKTR #USATriathlon #USAT #TeamUSA #CorporateWellness #HappyEmployeedProfitableBusiness #HeadacheRelief #MigraineHeadacheRelief #Migraine #SportsSpecificExam #SportSpecificTreatment #WorkCompDoc #WorkersCompensation #ankleSprain


Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Chiropractor or Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician: Does It Make A Difference For Your Sports Injury?

So, you’re an athlete of some kind and you now find yourself in need of a chiropractor for your sports injury. You do a Google search or check Yelp for some guidance. There are ‘lots’ of chiropractic physicians listed and most seem to have pretty good reviews. But, being an athlete you want someone that understands you better and you think going to a sports chiropractor is the way to go. But is there really a difference between a standard chiropractor and a sports chiropractor? 

The short answer is yes. Although many chiropractors will list “athletic injuries” or “sports injuries” on their long list of conditions treated, there is an actual post graduate specialty in chiropractic sports medicine. And no, having been an athlete in high school, or college, or even the pros doesn't qualify you as a "sports chiropractor". You can't just have played sports, there's a lot of education required too.

1930s NY Yankees Spring Training, St. Petersburg, FL. with Dr. Erle V. Painter (Far Right)

Prior to the development of a formal chiropractic sports medicine education programs, “sports chiropractic” dates back to the 1930s. Sports chiropractic was born during the World Champion New York Yankees Babe Ruth-Lou Gehrig era. Dr. Erle V Painter is the first known sports chiropractor. He was the NY Yankees athletic trainer. Combining his knowledge and experience of athletic training with that of chiropractic medicine, he took care of the most famous players the game of baseball has ever known. And if history tells us nothing else, we know they performed very well.

As a base education, both chiropractic physicians and medical physicians education is more similar than you may have been led to understand. A September 1998 study revealed that of the core curriculum (physiology, pathology, chemistry, biochemistry, microbiology, diagnosis, neurology, psychology, psychiatry, OB/GYN, x-ray and orthopedics) and clinical sciences, that chiropractic students spend 3790 hours for these basic sciences and clinical sciences vs 2648 for medical students; and 1405 hours of clinic experience  for chiropractic students vs 5227 hours for medical students (which includes their 3-year medical residency) (1). Medical students then go on to their specialty training.

What the general public (and the medical profession for that matter) doesn't know, is that like medicine, the chiropractic profession has many post graduate specialties as well. The oldest (formal) post graduate specialty is radiology and requires a 3 year residency. There’s also orthopedics, sports medicine, neurology, internal medicine, rehabilitation, functional medicine and more. Some of these specialties have more than 1 level of proficiency, such as the sports medicine program. These programs are post graduate study, 1-year for the base level certification and 3-years for the “diplomate” level. It is the "diplomates" that are the specialists of a particular discipline of post graduate study. 

In the United States, the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physicians is the certifying organization for the chiropractic sports medicine educational programs, examination process, credentialing and for the ongoing re-credentialing for year to year re-certification. 

To get your specialty certification in chiropractic sports medicine, you must attend 300+ classroom hours in the areas of:

• Advanced Assessment of the Athlete
• Rehabilitation of the Spine and Extremities
• Biomechanical Analysis of the Upper Extremity
• Biomechanical Analysis of the Lower Extremity
• Strength Training and Conditioning
• Soft Tissue Techniques for the Spine and Extremities
• Advanced Emergency Procedures
• Advanced Case Correlations
• Analysis of Literature
• Sports Nutrition
• Strength Training and Conditioning for the Athlete
• Special Populations in Sport
• Radiology
• Emergency Procedures
• Applications of Technology
• Soft Tissues
• Epidemiology of Spinal Trauma
• Adjunctive Therapies
• Foundations of Sport and Exercise Psychology
• Rehabilitation of the Athlete
• Taping and Bracing

Within each of these base subjects come the specifics associated with athletes of different sports & different populations (gender, age, special needs, etc). Within the chiropractic sports medicine specialty after completing your first 100-hours of study, you must pass a national board examination. Once successfully passed you are now a “Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician®” and can go on and complete the remaining hours for specialty status. You’ll complete the coursework and take a second national board examination. Once successfully passed, you then sit for a multi-station practical examination where you are put in front of live patients in simulated game and emergency situations as well as radiology, athletic taping & head trauma/concussion management. There is no curve on the practical exam. You pass or you fail. Each exam is filmed and proctored. Miss more than 2 sections and you take the entire practical exam over again. Miss 1 or 2 sections, and you can re-take those 1 or 2 sections.

 But that’s not all folks, in addition to passing the 2 national board written exams, the multi-station practical hands on examination, you must have completed at least 200 hours working with athletes in an “on field” situation. So, practical experience is also a requirement. However by this time, it’s not uncommon for diplomate candidates to have in excess of 500 to 1000 hours of experience working with athletes outside their normal office hours. If you put this in context of getting a bachelor’s degree (60 hours) or a master’s degree (120 hours) and the practical experience requirement takes on a whole new context.

Finally, each diplomate candidate must meet a sports medicine related publishing requirement and either publish or have their abstract accepted for publication in a scientific journal.

You must maintain an active healthcare practitioners CPR/BLS card as well. 

After all this, you are now given the privilege and honor of being a Diplomate of the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physicians®

So building on the base that Dr. Erle V Painter started, combining the professions of athletic training and chiropractic, the education of a certified sports chiropractor (CCSP) and the chiropractic sports diplomate (DACBSP) now combines elements of emergency medicine, radiology, nutrition, athletic training, physical therapy, neurology, soft tissue mobilization, chiropractic, orthopedics and much more.

It is specifically because of this kind of formal knowledge and practical experience that sports chiropractors are sought out by top professional teams, Pan American & Olympic athletes as part of their sports medicine team and as private consultants to coaches and athletes alike. But you don’t have to be a top Olympian or professional athlete to get that same level of care. If you're training for a 5k, half marathon or an Ironman Triathlon, or play pickup basketball in the park, now that you know the difference, you can find a “sports chiropractor” for yourself and your team. There's a reason the pros and the Olympics all have a sports chiropractor part of their team.

Or, maybe take a chance on someone without the education, experience and credentials while they learn on your multi-million dollar star athlete...

If  you're here in Miami or Miami Beach, you can find more about my practice at: If you're not local to South Florida, then just visit the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physician's web site  and there's link on the home page. Click on the link and then put in the specifics for your state and city. All CCSP and DACBSP that keep their education and credentials up to date are listed there. Another resource to finding a good sports chiropractor is the American Chiropractic Association's Sports Council

'nuff said

Dr. T


 #chiropractormiamibeach #MiamiBeachChiropractor #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #DrNarson #TriDoc #TriathlonDoc #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #SportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #SportsMedicineMiami #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiChiropractor #Triathlon #Running #Ironman #IFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #MiamiBeachChiropractor #GrastonTechnique #FAKTR #IASTM #Chiropractor #FootPain #Narson #NarsonBodyMechanic #NarsonTool #DACBSP #CCSP #ACBSP #BackPain #NeckPain #ShoulderPain #RotatorCuff #ITBandSyndrome #runnersKnee #PlantarFasciitis #Plantarfascitis #AchillesTendonitis #AchillesTendonosis #GettingAthletesBackInTheGame  #MiamiBeachChiropractor #MiamiSportsMedicine #MiamiBeachSportsMedicine #WeFixPeopleInPain #TrainWithoutPain #ChiropracticSportsMedicine #ACASC #ProSportChiropractic #FunctionalMedicineMiami #DrNarson #BackPainRelief #NeckPainRelief #SportsInjuriesFixedHere #LaserTherapy #RockTape #KinesioTape #KTTape

Dr. Narson is a 2-term past president of the Florida Chiropractic Association’s Council on Sports Injuries, Physical Fitness & Rehabilitation and was honored as the recipient of the coveted Chiropractic Sports Physician of the Year Award in 1999-2000. He practices in Miami Beach, Florida at the Miami Beach Family & Sports Chiropractic Center; A Facility for Natural Sports Medicine.