Select Page
The Role Of Nrf2 and Inflammation

The Role Of Nrf2 and Inflammation

If there is one thing we are learning more and more about, it is that everything can be related back to inflammation and what we put inside our bodies. Point blank. The food you consume affects your genetics and your inflammatory response in the body. Headaches, achy joints, and overall fatigue have been directly linked to inflammation.


Inflammation was once thought to just be something that occurs when the body has an infection or we hurt ourselves as the body’s natural response. That fact is still true to this day. However, we now know more. Now, we are able to recognize inflammation occurring inside our organs and down to the cellular level.

Just as you roll your ankle and it becomes inflamed, if you eat the wrong foods your gut becomes inflamed. This can then be traced back to leaky gut and in some cases, autoimmune diseases.

So what can we do about it? What is actually happening in our bodies?

The human body is an amazing machine that we are still finding more about each and every day. Let’s first take a look at where this inflammation is coming from. Inflammation can enter the gut barrier as a toxin, protein, pathogen, LPS, or alcohol.

If our body is continuously exposed to these triggers, it can result in our immune system becoming dysregulated. Now that our body has these triggers, things like allergies, asthma, autoimmunity, and poor immune tolerance and regulation become our bodies new regular.

Amplifying Loop

These triggers then signal something called cytokines. Cytokines are tiny and dance around inside of the cell. These cytokines increase NF-kB activity.

NF-kB is then used to transcribe DNA and express an inflammatory state!

Now, our bodies are promoting inflammation, all because we let the toxins in. What we put into our mouth and our bodies matter. The foods we eat have the ability to provide nutrients to our cells, rather than facilitating in this ongoing inflammatory response chain.

How Do I Regain Control?

Nrf2 is a key protein in the body that has the function of regulating the genome. This helps the body balance gene expressions and the regulation of our genes. Another thing Nrf2 does is upregulate genes that encode antioxidant enzymes and antiinflammatory genes.

Essentially, Nrf2 helps to fight off inflammation and reduce oxidative stress. Nrf2 activity is part of the detoxification system our bodies naturally have. It helps us to not get sick from every single bacteria we come into contact with. However, Nrf2 is a pathway, not a supplement. So now the question becomes, How do we active Nrf2?

From The Kitchen to The Genes

As mentioned earlier, everything can be traced back to the kitchen and what we put into our mouth to nourish our body. A great way to ensure you are feeding your body what it needs is to make a smoothie in the morning. Smoothies can contain so many nutrient-dense foods to aid in Nfr2 activation.

First, start off with flaxseed in the blender. Blend it up so the flax seeds get broken up and open. Next, add in blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, acai berry powder, broccoli sprouts, and almond milk!

By providing your body and your cells with the nourishment they need, they will flourish. In addition to a smoothie, there are supplements that can aid in Nrf2 activation as well. These supplements include curcumin, fish oil, wormwood, and CoQ10.

It’s clear that the “American Diet” has been causing problems for us. The world is so busy and fast-paced that we are not taking the time or giving our bodies the consideration to shop and make nutritious home-cooked meals. We need to increase our vegetables, fruits, fibers, whole grains and decrease the carbs. Everyone has some degree of inflammation in their body, and many of us do not even realize it! I challenge us to give up fast food for an entire month, cut the soda, increase the lemon water and eat at least one salad a day during this month. By increasing our vegetables and creating plates that are more colorful, our bodies will thank us! – Kenna Vaughn, Senior Health Coach�

Gordon, Jacob. �Recipes for NRF2 – MyBioHack: Unlock Your Maximum Potential.� MyBioHack, MyBioHack | Unlock Your Maximum Potential, 7 Nov. 2017,
Gordon, Jacob. �Why NRF2 Activation Can Make You More Sick – MyBioHack: Unlock Your Maximum Potential.� MyBioHack, MyBioHack | Unlock Your Maximum Potential, 2 Feb. 2020,
Lawrence, T. �The Nuclear Factor NF-�B Pathway in Inflammation.� Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology, vol. 1, no. 6, 2009, doi:10.1101/cshperspect.a001651.
Ma, Qiang. �Role of Nrf2 in Oxidative Stress and Toxicity.� Annual Review of Pharmacology and Toxicology, vol. 53, no. 1, 2013, pp. 401�426., doi:10.1146/annurev-pharmtox-011112-140320.

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal,and nervous health issues or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health protocols to treat injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at915-850-0900.

Stubborn Weight: Genetics or Diet?

Stubborn Weight: Genetics or Diet?

Today, there can be a lot of confusion when it comes to diet. The information received can be contradicting, confusing, and leave individuals feeling lost. This can often result in giving up on the diet and being left with joint pain, inflammation, discomfort, headaches and more.

The reason why there is more than one diet out there is because the research is always advancing. We have come to realize that everyone’s body reacts to different food sources and diets differently.

Genetic Code

As more and more research is being done, the more we are realizing how the genetic factor of individual cells directly correlate to a patient’s weight, diet, and changes as they age. For years, as one would get older and start gaining weight, we would attribute it to age. Although age is a factor, what we are finding now is that the genes are actually changing as we age and that is what creates this weight gain.

Sure enough, there are also genes that will tell us if you are susceptible to snacking. These genes can detect if you have a predisposition for heightened snacking or satiety. Satiety is the feeling of fullness after a meal. If you have reduced satiety, you tend to snack more because you do not feel as full after the meals you eat.

Getting your genes tested will allow the treatment plans created to be more personal and more geared to see results! Believe it or not, your genes can tell us if you are genetically prone to obesity,� if you have weight loss resistance when it comes to carbohydrates, and how your body responds to exercise! Using the genes, we can see how many hours per week you will need for weight loss or to maintain your current weight.

Proven Methods

The best option is to know your genes so the diet plan can be geared more towards you directly. However, if that is not a possibility right away, there has been one diet that has been proven time and time again to work for almost everyone. This diet is referred to as the Ketogenic Diet.

In simple terms, the ketogenic diet is a low carb, high-fat diet. This diet works by sending the body into a state of ketosis which burns fat as fuel.

Research shows that those using a ketogenic diet demonstrated a higher percentage of weight loss and kept the weight off longer when compared to those who did a low-fat diet.

Available Resources

Considering the fact that there is misinformation about diets out there, proper education is going to be the key. As someone who has gone through dietary changes myself and figuring out what works best with my body with type 1 diabetes for optimal health, the right team is what made me successful.

Surround yourself with those who are continuously educating themselves and have a system in place. For example, we make sure our patients get one on one time with the doctor and a health coach. From here, the health coach and patient become connected through a virtual database allowing the patient’s food, weight, supplements, hydration, BMI, BIA, and activity to be tracked by the health coach. The health coach can then instant message or video chat the patient throughout the week to ensure they are staying on track, staying motivated, and answer any questions they may have!

Do not be left confused over diets anymore! Remember that your genetic code holds the key to the right diet for you.

The right diet has the ability to make individuals see the results they have been waiting for. It all comes down to the genes. As mentioned, genes change over time but they hold the code. If you are someone who has struggled with diets, feeling good, or are stuck at a certain weight, I highly recommend getting tested! The information you gain from this is so beneficial! I have seen the results first hand, and they are eye-opening. They let you know if you have the genetics that will hold onto fat. This knowledge can help us prevent health issues such as metabolic syndrome! – Kenna Vaughn, Senior Health Coach�

Dr. Alex Jimenez�s Blog Post DisclaimerThe scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, and nervous health issues or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health protocols to treat injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.


Bueno, Nassib Bezerra, et al. �Very-Low-Carbohydrate Ketogenic Diet v. Low-Fat Diet for Long-Term Weight Loss: a Meta-Analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials.� British Journal of Nutrition, vol. 110, no. 7, 2013, pp. 1178�1187., doi:10.1017/s0007114513000548.


Can Back Pain Be Hereditary and Genetic El Paso, Texas?

Can Back Pain Be Hereditary and Genetic El Paso, Texas?

Q: Can back pain be hereditary and run in the family? I’m 24 and have chronic low back pain. But I found out that my mother, grandmother, and brother also have back pain. None of us were diagnosed with any type of spine condition. So I’m wondering if there is a hereditary/gene link or if it’s just a coincidence? El Paso, TX.

A: Back pain is a very common problem, and it is not uncommon that you and family members have back pain. Every year, 13 million people visit a chiropractor for chronic back pain. I can’t say without further study and research of your family whether the chronic low back pain is directly associated with your genes. But there are studies that support the connection between back pain and genetics.

11860 Vista Del Sol, Ste. 128 Can Back Pain Be Hereditary and Genetic El Paso, Texas


Back pain caused by a combination of factors

Research in the past was difficult to rule out environmental factors like stress, smoking, and diet as the only cause of back pain. But today, there is evidence that shows genetics do have a role in back pain.

Doctors are finding that chronic back pain does show a significant genetic hereditary link. Specifically the development of low spine degenerative disc disease, which is a disc-related condition associated with normal wear and tear.

In fact, several twin sibling studies and genetic marker studies have researched this connection. Below are a couple of studies that stand out in the correlation between back pain and genetics.


11860 Vista Del Sol The 4 Stages of Degenerative Disc Disease & How Chiropractic Can Help El Paso, TX.

Back Pain & Hereditary Genes Studies

A spinal study, which began in 1991, was a multidisciplinary, multinational research project on the cause of disc degeneration. The most significant findings were that there was a substantial influence of genetic/hereditary influence in lumbar disc degeneration.

It identified the specific genes that are associated with disc degeneration. However, environmental factors, work, sports, injuries, etc are also part of the condition, what the study found is that there is a connection of disc degeneration through genetic influences.

A study on genetics and lumbar disc disease found evidence that back pain could run in families. Specifically, lumbar disc disease could be inherited. The severity of the disease could not be determined or a patients’ response to various treatments. But it does suggest that genetics do play a role. Other findings include:

  • People that have lumbar disc disease were more likely to have family members with the disease.
  • The risk of inheriting the disease increased in both close and distant relatives.
  • Research is still ongoing to identify the exact genes that influence disc degeneration and back pain.

And as you said that you or your family have not been diagnosed with a spine condition,� this could be something to talk to your doctor or chiropractor about, along with creating a back pain treatment plan. For now, you can do physical therapy, chiropractic massage, CrossFit rehabilitation, etc to reduce and prevent back pain. Hopefully, it is a coincidence, but if it is genetics, not to worry as there is a treatment plan for that as well. But do not wait to make an appointment and let the pain get any worse.

Our team has taken great pride in bringing our families and injured patients only clinically proved treatment protocols. �By teaching complete holistic wellness as a lifestyle, we also change not only our patient�s lives but their families as well.� We do this so that we may reach as many El Pasoans who need us, no matter the affordability issues.

How to eliminate Back Pain naturally | (2020) Foot Levelers |El Paso, Tx



NCBI Resources

Lumbar spine disc herniation is a well-known type of injury that often causes impairing low back pain, however, it can also compress the nerve roots in the area and generate radicular pain and other symptoms along the lower extremities, such as altered sensations and muscle weakness.