Pharmacy to Farmacy

Many of you may know Erin-- the fabulous Pharm D that worked in our office a few years back.  Erin is a phenomenal gal and we embarked on the journey  into natural medicine around the same time.  As we both Read more

When Should I Take My Supplements?

If you are like me -- you are just starting to realize why it is important to add supplements to your diet.  Even if we are eating a clean, healthy and unprocessed diet;  the mineral content of the soil Read more

Natural Tips for Avoiding Colds

This cold and flu season is still upon us and unfortunately, many patients are still being plagued by these nasty viral symptoms.  Here are a few tips to try if you feel like you are coming down with something. Of Read more

More Homemade Salad Dressings

Blackberry Balsamic Vinaigrette 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar 1/4 cup avocado oil or extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp local honey 1/3 cup blackberries   Process all the ingredients together in a blender and then season with ground pepper and sea salt The beauty of this recipe Read more

Healthy Mayo and Ranch Dressing

This stuff is a must -- If you read labels these days you will be hard pressed to find a mayonnaise or salad dressing that doesn't contain some type of vegetable oil.  Even the commercial mayos that advertise to Read more

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

So I got a little wicked crazy this weekend and decided to splurge on some pizza.  We do gluten-free carry out around here sometimes, but my future son-in-law inspired me to make my own cauliflower pizza crust. He made Read more

Pumpkin Chai Smoothie

Here's a throwback post that is certainly appropriate for this October weekend.  This smoothie matches the season and will be a great way to start the lovely fall day. Thanks to Smoothie Queen Amy for this great recipe I can't wait Read more

Gluten Free Zucchini Bread

Gluten-Free Zucchini Bread So I have been struggling with gluten-free baking because honestly -- I've never been good at baking!!  Then when I try to modify recipes using flours I'm not familiar with, it just makes  a perfect storm of Read more

Call to action

Cow Farts

“I’ll never stop eating animals, I’m sure, but I do think that for the benefit of everyone, the time

has come to stop raising them industrially and stop eating them thoughtlessly.” (Mark Bittman)

Mark Bittman is a bestselling cookbook author, journalist and television personality. His friendly, informal approach to home cooking has shown millions that fancy execution is no substitute for flavor and soul.  Listen to this entertaining and informative talk on the necessity of changing our diets for the future of mankind.

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Need I Say More?

 

 

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Toxic Relationships and Superheros

Maybe we should all read that book, “Women who love too much”–If you find yourself drained, not fulfilled, and not being pampered by your loved one; are you really living the life you were meant to live?  I think not!  That bad boy relationship that seemed so inviting and exciting, will only leave you spent and tired.  Yes, those men are fun and full of passion, but it only lasts for a moment.  Remember what you are worth and how much you have to offer in this world.  Don’t sell yourself short girl–This too shall pass.  It’s ok to be different!  It’s ok to be you–that makes you different-not wrong!

I write these words of encouragement for many female patients whom neglect themselves and their own needs in order to be superwoman only projecting  the image of perfection as wives and mothers!  I am certainly the pot calling the kettle black with this one since I have to remind myself daily that I don’t have to solve every problem or issue that comes up in our household.  It’s a narcissistic martyr role that I take when I try to do everything for everyone in my family.  I think I am doing it out of kindness when I am actually doing it to prove to myself that I can.  Then I resent everyone else for allowing me to do everything!  When we make life too easy for our families and children–we disable them and neglect ourselves.  I really don’t want my girls to fall into a pattern of overextending and resenting so I have vowed to try to lead by example and make the change for the better.

Luckily, my bad boy is actually a good one and he has been more than understanding and encouraging in my new “setting limits”  mode.  Fortunately, he wears his cape with less martyrdom than I ever did.

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The New Normal – A Modern Family

Let’s face it.  We aren’t living in a “Leave it to Beaver” world anymore.  That’s why I relate to Claire from Modern Family a little better than June Cleaver.  Do I have dinner on the table at 5 pm nightly?  Of course not.  I work and don’t even get home by five.    Do I like texting my daughter at college rather than calling her to see how her day was?  Heck no!   Unfortunately, calling her would leave me hanging for days.  Sensibly,  I text her and she responds in nanoseconds.  These days we are forced to ask ourselves, how can we connect without relying on the reality of what we were raised to believe was normal?  I think Theresa Mazza does a great job with this post. We adapt and reconsider what we value daily–it may not be “normal” for us, but it just may be what we do to stand for what we think is right.  Change is hard in the dance of  life.  Occasionally, we take a leap of faith.

 

 

Here is Theresa’s recent post–be sure to visit her blog at http://www.theresamazza.com

Cultural and societal norms seem to move as fast as the white waters of the Colorado River. The recent NBC series, The New Normal, highlights this reality. Every day it seems like there’s a new normal. What was normal 90 days ago is old school, out-dated, and irrelevant. Remember when paying for your flight included your luggage? That was then; now it’s normal to pay additional fees for each piece you check. Or remember when Christmas shopping meant fighting crowds and shopping till you literally dropped? But what normal person would put themselves through all that when you can shop for just about everything online and have it delivered right to your front steps?

The biggest question is, who decides what’s normal? The truth is, what’s normal for society doesn’t always become the norm in our personal lives. It’s normal for mothers to dress like their daughters these days, but maybe you can’t imagine adopting that as a personal norm. It’s more normal than ever to get a tattoo but, although I think tattoos are cool, I admit I’m all talk when it comes to getting one.

So what are we to do when we just can’t adopt the new norms that surround us? Do we picket and boycott, give in, do nothing, flounder in between, or do we resolve to continue loving people and allow Christ to shape our normal rather than society? “That’s normal” should never be the reason we accept something as a norm. Normal for the believer must come out of a relationship with our Creator.

In Genesis normal shifted as fast as it’s shifting now. It was normal for Adam to hang out in the Garden, walking and talking with God. It was normal for Adam and Eve to walk around naked. It was also normal for people and God to be so connected that God always knew where they were. But then, normal changed.

What happened?

Adam and Eve decided to adopt norms that were not in the interest of each other or their relationship with God, but self-interested. They left God out. This decision changed normal for them. In this Genesis story we see fear of God becoming normal over connection with God, we see blame becoming normal over caring for one another, we see a God who was normally delighted in his creation experience disappointment, we see a God who was able to give, now having to take away. It wasn’t just the first sin; it was the first time humans adopted a new normal outside of the normal God had established for them.

Self interest and the desire to know more and experience more allows normal to define us. Interest in others before ourselves and a desire to know God allows us to define normal. When our relationship with God is the deciding factor of the normal in our life we can influence normal instead of normal influencing us.

When we embrace God’s idea of normal, we can be a part of positive shifts in the society and culture we live in.

A “me” society can become a “we” society.
A violent people can become a peaceful people.
An exclusive local church can become an inclusive local church.
Global awareness can become global impact.
Followers can become leaders.

I recently spoke to group of teenagers about normal and left them with these two things:
Desire God first, and influence normal instead of letting normal influence you.

Where do we start? In the beginning…where God desired to walk with us, talk with us, share everything with us, create with us, and love us. Pursue God. Choose and live by his idea of normal for you. Then embrace and glorify him in your normal everyday life.

Romans 12 from the Message Bible says…

“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, Family, Guest Blog, Humor, Mind, Spirit 2 Comments

Monsanto Evils

This post is for Cindy–a dear patient and friend who has been suffering from a debilitating illness since 2001.  She has been to Cleveland Clinic, Mayo, and to all of the top specialists in the fields of neurology, rheumatology, infectious disease, dermatology, oncology, cardiology, and pulmonology.  Geez–I think we hit every field of medicine.  However, I promised Cindy that I would never stop looking for what may actually be making her sick!  I recently did an ALCAT test on her to find that she has a severe intolerance to GLYPHOSATE.  Ba Bam!!!  Ironically, if you have been following the news lately, you are aware of  The Monsanto Company who exclusively produces Roundup Ready soybean seed for the commercial market.  Allegedly,  many of monsanto’s seed products are genetically modified to make them resistant to the Monsanto produced agricultural chemicals such as Round Up herbicide.  They also allegedly produce recombinant Bovine somatotropin.  Yes, I know  What???  It is a synthetic growth factor injected into cows to increase their milk production.  Watch this trailer for more information.  And watch out Erin Brockovich because if I cure Cindy by getting her off of Monsanto products—I’m casting Channing Tatum in the movie!

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“When I let go of who I am, I become who I will be”—Day #1

“I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed.” -Lloyd Dobler (Say Anything)

When I was a little girl–the words “become a professional and don’t expect someone else to take care of you” were gently and repetitively etched into my head.  I think that is why I aspired to become a doctor.  I didn’t want to do law, I have no passion for rules.  A business owner seemed too processed for me.  I wanted to help people.

When I was in college after already committing my life to become a doctor, I became terribly ill and landed a spot in the hospital.  My doctor at the time told me “You are not going to die”  That phrase I will never forget because at that moment–I felt like I might.  I was then forever indebted to becoming that person who would reassure a patient that their darkest hours were not at hand.   I studied hard and abstained from activities my peers were engaged in only to persue my dream.  Eleven years ago my dream came true and I was finally the doctor starting practice and ready to change the lives of many.  I was trained to treat every disease with the best of medicines and could conquer any patient’s complaint.  Unfortunately, those concepts drastically changed as I continued to evolve as a person and was touched by each patient that I met.  After ten years of medicine I could feel myself beginning to change but I wasn’t quite sure just what the change was.  Then the day Susan came in I began to have a greater focus.

A few years ago, Susan, a popular vet in the local community with 4 boys, came to me tearstricken and upset.  She had developed an autoimmune disease seven years before that had debilitated her to the point that she was unable to function as the woman, mother, and wife that she had once been.  Tears welled in my eyes during that annual visit as I noted her spirit and life’s luster being eroded by the burden of her disease.  I told her … “I am no superwoman, I have no answers for you.”  We could only pray together that things would change.

The following monday morning she called and said  “My pastor pulled me aside after church on Sunday and told me he had dreamt I got a second opinion and was healed.”  I immediately called a physician who I had not seen since residency.  He was leaving for a mission trip to Haiti the next day and the only way he could see her was if she could be there in thirty minutes.  Ironically, she had no patients scheduled that day, had a babysitter for her kids, and was already having lunch in the area.  He told her that it wasn’t a disease, it was an allergy.  He hadn’t a clue as to what she might be ingesting that would cause this severe reaction. Eventually, she discovered that she had to eliminate red dye # 40 from her diet and she is 100% healthy now.

I have spent countless hours walking in the woods and enjoying my own family.   Yet, I continue to watch many other patients struggle with their inability to share the same pleasures in life.  I have now realized that I have been on the wrong track.  We dont need to cure and treat disease–we need to prevent it!
All the years of training to to heal people have proven that I have been coexisting with them.  I must shift my role to help them before the diseases takes hold.  I must help my patients change themselves.  I realize that the best way to change the world is to change yourself.

Thus—I will simply become who I am by letting go of what I thought I was and hope to do the same for those who come to me for help.

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Essential Oils

 

Ever wonder why you immediately feel calm and relaxed when you walk into a spa for that much-anticipated massage after a long week?  The aroma of the spa is invigorating and uplifting.  Spas often use essential oils that have positive effects on the hypothalamus and limbic system in our brains.  Thus, they immediately relax us and detoxify our thoughts.  Our noses know exactly how to harness the healing power of plants which is why oils can be so effective in the healing process.  Essential oils have been used for centuries in traditional cultures for purification and medicinal purposes.  Essential oils can be inhaled as well as applied topically to penetrate cell membranes thus enhancing cellular function.

Beware–when buying essential oils, quality is key.  Synthetic oils found in most health food stores can be toxic.  They are created with solvents and high heat that damages the plants.  The companies that make them also often use chemicals to extend their shelf life.  You must get therapeutic grade oils that use steam distillation as a water extraction process and not chemicals

For more info on essential oils visit:

http://www.essentialthree.com

 http://www.youngliving.com

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Conventional Diet Wisdom

 

Conventional diet wisdom is wrong!  Changes in our diets have occurred as a result of the agricultural revolution 7,000 years ago.  Unfortunately, the more recent industrial revolution has happened  so quickly that our genes haven’t had time to adapt.  Heart disease, cancer, and diabetes were virtually nonexistent before we rapidly changed our diets.  Our ancestors for more than 2 million years ate meats, fish, vegetables, fruits, and nuts.  Grains like wheat and corn, soybeans, and sugar were not part of their diet.  The processed foods that we are consuming now only contain food like substances and not nutrients.  If you don’t believe me–go into Walmart and count how many healthy looking people over the age of 30 you see.  More food for thought—Watch this tidbit about the Paleo Diet.

Posted on by Angela in Body, Call to action, Diet, disease, Green Living, Nutrition, Organic, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Childhood Obesity

There is no controversy over the fact that childhood obesity is a huge problem in the United States.  More than enough data and research has been done to prove that 1 in 5 American children will be obese by 2020 if the current trends continue.  These are the facts, but what can we do to change things?  There are many possible actions but it all starts at the home level.  We can be more successful as parents by leading by example.  For instance, making my girls watch “Forks Over Knives” and “Hungry For Change” was a real battle;  they did however get some subliminal messages from watching those two documentaries.  I noticed they replaced the traditional peanut butter cracker after school snack with fruit.  They get more messages from me as they see me painfully wean my diet mtn dew consumption.  Changing a lifestyle and years of bad habits isn’t easy.  My theory is that if I change myself gradually, they will also.  Research shows that replacing sugar-sweetened beverages in schools could reduce obesity by 12 kcal/day, as long as children didn’t consume any extra sugary drinks outside of school.   So that is my call to action, I have to eliminate the sugar at home first.   There aren’t any distinct answers in how to change the diet of the country and healthcare on average.  But, it starts with us!  Let’s do this Marines.  Let’s work to educate ourselves on whole foods and nutrition.  Lead by example.

T. Colin Campbell does a nice 18min presentation that you can watch here:

Reference:  Wang YC, et al “Reaching the Healthy People goals for reducing childhood obesity:  closing the energy gap”  A, K Prev Med 2012

For more info on T. Colin Campbell and Forks Over Knives visit:  http://www.forksoverknives.com

Posted on by Angela in Body, Call to action, Diet, Exercise, Family, Nutrition, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food 1 Comment

Fifty Shades of Exercise

Dear Gym Bag,

I have to confess that I am unfulfilled in our relationship right now.  It’s not you, it’s me.  I have allowed these drought filled dog days of 100 degree heat to play tricks on my mind.  I have left you sweltering in the car all day while I worked only to come outside and blow you off without giving you any love because I was tired and too hot to go running.  I’m no better than the people leaving dogs and kids in cars in this heat.   I have been selfish!  It would be easy for me to wake up earlier and hook up with you in the am.  You always leave me feeling refreshed, energetic, sweaty, and confident!  I can’t believe I have failed my loyal love drug!  I would like to renew my vows with you again next week.  In any good committed relationship or marriage, if you aren’t working on it, it’s won’t work.  I’m seeking therapy now.  I recently read that people cheat in relationships because of  loneliness and I can’t  revisit my toxic romance with Diet Mtn Dew–it left me drained, depressed and I have moved on.  Please accept my apology and know that you are my Christian Grey–and I do love what you do for me!

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