Category Archives: toxins

How Toxic Are You?


Is your body a toxic waste dump?

This is a simple question guide that will tell us early warning signs for the need of cleansing impurities or toxin build up in our body.

  1. Do you often feel tired or fatigued?
  2. Do you feel dizzy, foggy-headed or having trouble concentrating?
  3. Do you use coffee, cigarettes, candy or soda to get “up”?
  4. Do you eat fast, fatty, processed or fried foods?
  5. Do your bowels move less than twice a day?
  6. Do you experience intestinal gas and bloating or constipation?
  7. Do you experience headaches or yeast difficulties?
  8. Do you live with or near air and water pollution?
  9. Do you experience general aches and pains or arthritis?
  10. Do you have food allergies, or skin problems?
  11. Do you experience frequent back pains or sinus problems?
  12. Are you often exposed to chemicals, sedatives, or stimulants?
  13. Do you rarely exercise or feel sluggish or overweight?
  14. Have you done a cleansing program before?

If you answered “Yes” to three or more of these questions, or “no” to the last question, it would be desirable for you to purify your system of toxins.



3rd Anniversary at Zen Healing Center!

Zen Healing Center is celebrating 3rd year anniversary and giving out specials services and giving gifts for those who stop by!

Three years have gone by since Zen Healing Center opened our clinic in Edina, MN. Here is a brief history of the clinic from its beginnings to presents!

Dr. Zen opened his clinic, Zen Chiropractic Inc. with the b11d45ff508640ad8d3cbe2211c24238slogan “Healing from Within” in
Bloomington, MN near the Mall of America. What started with humble beginnings with spending many hours of doing Japanese translation and community work helped to grow the clinic and eventually outgrow the Bloomington location.

After a year and a half, Dr. Zen was contacted by an owner of a massage spa business. Since they had an opening for space for the business, Dr. Zen decided to move his clinic into the massage business in Edina, MN. After 1 year of practicing Chiropractic in this location, the chiropractic practice outgrew the location again.

In 2013, after 6 months of searching, Dr. Zen found the current location in Edina MN. With the help of Fernanda Matsuda, his wife, they started a concept of integrating other healing moralities into his practice. An acupuncturist and massage therapist was added to the clinic and its name was changed the name to Zen Healing Center with the slogan of “Longevity and Wellness”.


Dr. Zen’s brother, a graphic designer, made a logo based off the Japanese Family Crest. Since Dr. Zen’s last name translates to “Pine tree in a rice field,” a symbol of a Pine tree was used. In Japanese culture, a pine tree is a symbol of longevity, virtue, and youth.


After a year and a half of opening Zen Healing Center, the clinic doubled in size. Demanding for expansion, additional rooms for acupuncture, massage, and an x-ray room were added.

“Starting with humble beginnings and moving fromIMG_8500s217 place to place reminds me of how I am grateful of my clients who referred their family and friends. As my goal in life, Dr. Gonstead has also seen humble beginnings from a one room on the top floor of a bank to a 29,000 square feet clinic and seeing 7 million people in his life time. After many years of changes, we are now working with the best administrative staff and providers that I have seen over years. Working for this office has rarely felt like work. As many difficult cases stop by Zen Healing Center, the more I am empathetic and excited to be help those who are in need.”

Zen Matsuda D.C. Co-Owner/Founder of Zen Healing Center

“Being part of the Zen Healing Center team means excitement and joy.IMG_5371 Throughout the years I have received many feedback from our clients stating how happy they are for finding a place where they can truly feel healing.  In the past three years, our clinic has expanded in size. We have added new services, improved our software, added new treatment rooms, digital x-rays and tests. Seeing our clients getting well is a huge motivation for all of our team members to keep improving so that we can serve them even better. We strive to keep expanding but our main goal is to keep focusing on the wellness of our existing and future clients.”

Fernanda Matsuda-Co-Owner/Founder of Zen Healing Center

“A year of experience Zen healing Center for me was pleasant, Aliceharmonizing, educating, and supporting.  The team work was wonderfully done with the communication and help among the team members.  I see that the clinic is growing in every aspect through hard-work and dedication to help people.  I very much enjoy and look forward to continuing work at Zen Healing Center.”

Alice Min Kang L. Ac

“Hello, I’m Stephanie and I started working at Zen Healing Center after the IMG_5369holidays this year. Previously I worked at a bank and this environment has proved to serve me much better. I really like that wellness is a focus here and I truly enjoy seeing the health of our patients improve as time goes on. I think we have something great here between Dr. Zen, Alice and Matt and I am excited to learn more and more about their practices and techniques.”

Patient Service Coordinator/Administrative Assistant


“Hello everyone. My name is LuAnn and I am a transplant from Wisconsin currently in school for my nursing degree. I have been working with the Zen Healing Center since late December of 2015 and have immensely enjoyed the staff here as well as the clientele we serve. The atmosphere here has been amongst one of the best I have had the short privilege of working in. The providers are passionate about their work and truly care for their patients as nobody here is a number, but a unique individual with personal, customized plans. They don’t aim to treat symptoms, but to help get to the root cause and aid the body in healing itself. They aim for true well-being. It is an experience that ought to be experienced by yourself if you are, at all, a bit curious about what we have to offer!”

Patient Service Coordinator

“Hi all, my name is Chee Vang. I started working here in November 2015. IMG_5378I work at Zen Healing Center part-time and work full-time at Anthem, Inc. The past months that I’ve been here has been great. All the employees here are super friendly and helpful to one and another. Honestly, I’ve never knew how chiropractic works, but having Dr. Zen educating me and learning what he does to patients, has really helped me understand his technique of Gonstead.”

Patient Service Coordinator

My name is Matt Williamson. I began my journey at ZHC in May 2015. Matt Photo copyI have had a lot of fun learning from Dr Zen and Alice. I continually am driven to learn new innovative ways to help people heal. I have a variety of ways to accomplish this goal The most important part of my job is always understanding what the needs are of each individual person. The most rewarding part of my job is knowing that I am part of a team who is always doing their best to help people leave us healthier and happier.

Matt Williamson CMT, Cert. ART

Quick Guide for Body Chemistry Imbalances

All Body Chemical Imbalances can be divided into one of two categories:

Deficiencies in the required ingredients for homeostatic cell function. In America, we are plenty over fed with cheap and synthetically made sugar, protein, and fats. After a while of your body ingesting food that is not nutritious, our body starts to show signs of break down.


Toxicities that drive cell function away from hormonal imbalances and bodies homeostasis. Many instant fast foods, cheap grocery box foods, and many more kinds of personal beauty care products are bombarded with chemical treatments. We are innocently treating our selves with all kinds of chemicals that eventually can harm your body by toxicities.


Cells always function perfectly in relation to any given environment. Symptoms like pain, nausea, and any other apparent health problems represent important signals from cells telling you that there is something wrong, that there is deficiency or toxicity, and that they are under stress. The cells never function pathologically or incorrectly, the environment is pathological or unhealthy! In order to function properly and produce healthy cells you must have all requirements met and be free of deficiencies or toxicity.

Hierarchy of Requirements:
  1. Properly Functioning Nervous System
  2. Fresh Air
  3. Water
  4. Good Foods
Good Food Choices to Make
  1. Organic, vine ripened local fruits and vegetables
  2. Grass fed, antibiotic free and hormone free meats
  3. Wash the non-organic produce-use a natural cleaner
  4. Eat raw fruits and vegetables


Toxic Food Choices to Avoid:
  1. Fried food (fries, donuts, chips, etc)toxins1
  2. Processed and Non fiber carbohydrates (flour, pasta, bread, etc)
  3. Grains (limited whole grains-wild rice and whole oats)
  4. Dairy (limited non-pasteurized dairy)
  5. Juices (limited very diluted)
  6. Caffeine
  7. Sprayed, early harvested fruits and vegetables
  8. Grain fed, antibiotic fed, hormone fed or smoked meats
  9. Non-filtered or non-distilled water
  10. Dried fruits
  11. Hydrogenated fatstoxin-toxout-logo_03
  12. Partially hydrogenated fat
  13. Trans fats
  14. Added Salts
  15. MSG
  16. Hydrolyzed protein (disguised MSG)
  17. Aspartame and other artificial sweetners
  18. High Fructose Corn Syrup


Remember about Processed Chemicals causes Imbalances in your Body Chemistry?


MSG is one of the notorious chemicals for causing many chemical imbalances thatresults to health problems.


Health dangers associated with MSG

Independent research has identified the following adverse reactions to MSG

* Headaches/migrainesmsg-red-cup

* Lethargy

* Sleepiness

* Anxiety

* Panic attacks

* Mental confusion/disorientation

* Insomnia

* Nausea/vomiting

* Diarrhea

* Stomach cramps

* Irritable bowel syndrome

* Bloating

* Asthma attacks

* Shortness of breath

* Chest pain or tightness

* Runny nose/sneezing

* Extreme dryness of the     mouth

* Hives or rash

* Palpitations

* Flushing

* Mouth lesions

MSG has been shown to cause lesions on the brain, especially in children. These lesions cause cognitive, endocrinological and emotional abnormalities. In children excess glutamate affects the growth cones on neurons. Growth cones are vital in laying down chemical pathways in the brain to enable the brain to operate effectively. Studies show that rats who had been fed MSG from birth could not escape mazes or discriminate between stimuli as well as non MSG fed rats. The implications for human children are that MSG could seriously affect their cognitive skills and cause learning difficulties.

Many Medical Practitioners recommend the following people avoid MSG;

* infants20120814tu-underground-health-reporter-10-worst-food-ingredients

* children

* pregnant women

* women of childbearing age

* obese people (animals given MSG became overweight)

* people with hypoglycemia (removing excess glutamate uses up more glucose)

* people with low brain energy (excess glutamate prevents glucose getting to the brain)

* people with learning difficulties (glutamate affects the growth cones in neurons)

* migraine or headache sufferers

* asthma or allergy sufferers

* sufferers of a brain disease such as Alzheimer’s

* sufferers of tinnitus or Meniere’s disease

* sufferers of most chronic illnesses

* people who are health conscious.

MSG is also Called…………


Sodium Caseinate

Textured Protein

Natural Flavoring

Yeast Food

Autolyzed Yeast

Hydrolyzed Protein

Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein

Yeast Extract

Hydrolyzed Yeast

Natural Chicken or Turkey Flavoring

Modified Food Starch

It is impossible to Avoid these so…………..

Restrict Processed foods

Restrict “No FAT or Low FAT” named products. Eat Whole Fruits, Veggies, and sprouted grains.

Large Intestine

Large Intestine

The large intestine is image001approximately five feet long and is one of the four major excretory organs of the body. It is a muscular tube that is the extension of the small intestine. No digestion or assimilation of food by-products occurs in the colon. At the end of the small intestine, the remnants of the digestive process resemble a thick liquid like oatmeal that is called chyme. There is a valve at the end of the small intestine that is supposed to prevent the back flow of this chyme into the small intestine where toxic material could be absorbed into the blood stream. While in the large intestine, the chyme is dehydrated to form either solid or semisolid feces. The muscles of the wall of the large intestine push this mass forward until it is stored just above the rectum and is held there by the Valves of Houston, also known as the rectal folds. When sufficient quantity of fecal mater has been stored, it is dropped into the rectum and then is expelled. The time it takes for food to be ingested, travel through the gastrointestinal tract and then be expelled is called the transit time. Normal transit time is 18 to 24 hours. The normal bowel movement should not contain recognizable food, be fairly well formed and be easy to expel. There should be no foul odor or be greasy.

tumblr_mssb0hmlyu1qgl0s1o1_1280The large intestine is the home of over 400 different microorganisms. In fact, there are so many living there that there are more cells in your colon than there are cells in your entire body. These microorganisms should be living harmoniously with you. There are two major healthy microorganisms in the intestinal tract. These are lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidus. Bifidus lives more in the large intestine and acidophilus more in the small intestine. Both of them live from the fermentable fiber in your diet. As they multiply in your intestine, they produce natural antibiotics that suppress the growth of many pathogenic organisms like salmonella, shigella, candida, E. coli and staphylococcus. It is the growth of the good bacteria that suppresses the growth of the bad bacteria.

Fiber is important for the maintenance of the good bacteria and speeds up the transit time. This is important because the longer fecal material is allowed to stay in the colon the greater the conversion of bile into carcinogenic compounds by the microorganism clostridia occurs.

The following are major factors that are important in maintaining normal large intestine function.

Eat fiber.  Whole grains, fruits and vFruits-veggies-fiberegetables are good sources of fiber. Remember, the friendly bacteria in your intestines need the fiber for fuel. Without enough fiber they die of lack of food. The fiber also speeds up the transit time and helps reduce the chances of cancer of the colon.

Increase raw or undercooked foods. These foods generally contain enzymes that aid in the digestion of the food and also contain fluids and fiber.

Increase water intake. Your entire digestive tWoman Drinking Glass of Waterract depends on water to function. Every laxative does nothing more than get water into your colon.

Increase exercise. Notice how if you take arun dog for a walk, after a sufficient length of time, the dog will defecate. Exercise aids in stimulating the action of the intestinal muscles.

Avoid overeating. Eating large meals can cause poor digestion and sluggish functioning of the muscles of the intestinal tract.

There are specific supplements that can be taken to aid in the normalization of your large intestine function. If these are indicated in your case, they will be suggested for your use. These may be indicated to increase the number and type of friendly bacteria, to suppress bad bacteria, to increase digestion, aid in the healing of the intestinal mucous lining or to aid in the lubrication of the lining of the large intestine.

At one meal, consume a food that can easily be spotted in the stool. Corn, beets or charcoal tablets are good examples. Do not chew the food any more than is needed to swallow it. Check the time it takes until you can see the food you ate in the toilet bowl.

Signs of a toxic bowel

  • Constipation
  • Hard, dry stools
  • Excessive gas
  • Foul stools or gas
  • Abdominal bloating
  • Diarrhea
  • Indigestion
  • Bad breathe
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Varicose veins
  • Coated tongue
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Depression, irritability
  • Skin disorders
  • Joint pains

Lack of fiber causes Increased cholesterol levels

  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Stroke
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity

Recipe for Nourishing Your Immunity

Chinese Chicken Congee is an easy and delicious way to boost your immune system this fall. Congee is rice porridge that promotes the strengthening of your stomach, spleen, and Qi (energy).  Having a strong stomach and spleen is important when nourishing your immune system. It’s a great spin-off the classic chicken noodle soup when you are feeling a bit under the weather. Here’s the recipe!

Chinese Chicken Congee

1/2 lbs chicken thighs

1 cup long grain rice

9 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup sliced garlic

3 chopped scallions

2 inch piece of ginger thinly chopped

Salt and pepper

-Add all ingredients to a large pot and bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover. Stir every 15 minutes. Cook for 1 – 1.5 hours depending on how thick you like your congee. You can add water if need be. Serve with a splash of soy sauce and nourish that Qi!

Have a beautiful week!

Household toxins

Here’s a Little of What I’ve Learned

There are basically three ways that toxic chemicals can enter the body: by swallowing, by breathing, or by contact with the skin or eyes. When most people hear about a chemical poisoning, they usually think about swallowing (ingestion). Every year, five to ten million household poisonings are reported, the immediate result of accidental ingestion of common cleaning, pesticide, personal care and other common household products. Many of these poisonings are fatal, and most of the victims are children.

The personal care products we put on our skin and hair create possible toxic exposures through skin absorption. These include soaps, lotions, creams, cosmetics, shampoos, deodorants, and other common products.  In 1989, a House subcommittee asked the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) to analyses 2,983 chemicals used in personal care products, and 884 were found to be toxic. Of these, 778 can cause acute toxicity, 146 can cause tumors, 218 can cause reproductive complications, 314 can cause biological mutation, and 376 can cause skin and eye irritations. Personal care products should promote hygiene, health and beauty…not make us sick.

Of course, it doesn’t mean to suggest that everyone will experience health problems the first time they use a product containing toxic ingredients, although many people do. Actually, most poisonings happen slowly, over a long period of time by gradual skin absorption or by daily exposure to toxics we breathe in the air.

When are told about toxics in the air, they are usually surprised to learn that indoor air is generally much worse to breathe than outdoor air. In fact, an EPA Report to Congress on Indoor Air and the subcommittee hearings on the Indoor Air Quality Act of 1989 stated that indoor air pollution is one of the nation’s most important environmental health problems. According to the EPA, most home have airborne concentrations of hazardous chemicals that are two to five times higher indoors than outdoors. In one five-year study, the EPA reported that a number of homes had chemical levels that were seventy times higher inside than outside.

One reason chemical concentrations are so high in some home is that cleaning products, personal care products, and other household goods release toxic vapors into the air when they are used –some even when they are being stored. The next time you walk down the cleaning products aisle in the supermarket, notice how strongly it smells of toxic chemicals, even though all the packages are tightly closed.

A 1985 EPA report concluded that the toxic chemicals in household cleaners are three times more likely to cause cancer than outdoor air pollution. Also a report by the Consumer Product Safety Commission on chemicals commonly found in homes identified 150 that have been linked to allergies, birth defects, cancer and psychological abnormalities. With windows sealed shut in the winter to conserve heat and save energy, and in the summer to hold in cool air-conditioned air, these toxic fumes have nowhere to go and just build up to higher and higher levels.

Household cleaning products are among the most toxic substances we encounter daily. In one study conducted over a 15-year period, women who worked at home had a 54% higher death rate from cancer than women who had jobs away from the home. The study concluded that the increased death rate was due to daily exposure to hazardous chemicals found in ordinary household products. Both my mother and grandmother worked at home, and both died from cancer. My mother was only 51. So we can wonder if she would be alive today if she had been aware of the information contained here.

One final comment to make about household toxics. Household toxics don’t just affect us, they create toxic waste in their manufacture and use, which gets disposed of in the environment in the form of air and water pollution and solid toxic waste. Not only does this pollution come back to haunt our own health, but it also harms wildlife.

To cite only one example, my local California Department of Fish and Game tested the toxicity of common chemicals that they found in our waterways. The most toxic substances to aquatic organisms were household bleach, all-purpose cleaner, laundry detergent, and dish detergent. These were more harmful to aquatic life than other household products we think of as being more toxic, such as paint or car wax.

The natural environment makes it possible for us to live on this earth. From it we draw everything that sustains our lives. Without it, we cannot survive.

What You Can Do

The first step is to educate ourselves. There are safer products on the market, so maybe there is a change going on, but the number of toxic products still being sold and purchased tell me that not everyone has gotten the message.

The next step is to begin to eliminate toxics from your daily life. While cleaning and personal care products are not the only source of toxic chemicals in your home, they are among the most toxic and deadly. Fortunately, they are also the easiest to replace.

There are some good sources for safer cleaning and personal care products.

Be well, and enjoy your health!