Naturopathic doctors use a variety of tools and treatment methods to address all types of conditions. Naturopathic doctors commonly treat using therapies such as acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine, nutritional/lifestyle counseling, botanical medicine, physical medicine, injection/intravenous therapy, and homeopathy. Some naturopathic doctors have additional training in skills or tools such as live blood cell analysis, Bioelectric Impedance Analysis (BIA) technology, therapeutic ultrasound or laser, and many others. Naturopathic doctors may also choose to have a focus on a particular condition or body system, such as skin or the endocrine system. Below is a detailed description of all the therapies used.
Before attending your first visit you will fill out an intake form for the naturopathic doctor. The intake form will ask you questions about your health, such as what are your health concerns and goals, do you have any current illnesses or diagnoses, do you take any medications or supplements, do any of your family members have any health conditions, how is your sleep, energy, stress, what does your typical diet look like, do you exercise, and some other questions.
You may be wondering how does someone become a naturopathic doctor? What is their training? Are they licensed? And, how is the profession regulated?
To become a naturopathic doctor, you need to graduate from an accredited naturopathic institution. But, before that, you need to complete a 3- or 4-year undergraduate degree from a recognized university.
This week is "Infertility Awareness Week"; to bring awareness to a greatly stigmatized topic I want to share some information about fertility.
Infertility is described as the inability to conceive after 1 year of trying for women under the age 35 years old or 6 months in women over 35 years of age. Roughly, 1 in 6 couples in Canada are dealing with infertility. Infertility can affect females and males. Below are 10 must-know facts about infertility.
In honour of naturopathic medicine week, I will be writing a series of entries, starting with "What is naturopathic medicine?" Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary care system that uses evidence-based research and natural treatment methods to address a variety of acute and chronic health conditions and concerns.
With beautiful spring weather comes fresh plant/tree life and their pollens which can trigger our allergy symptoms such as itchy, watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, cough, and sometimes skin issues. Did you know that you can prevent your seasonal allergy symptoms before they appear? Naturopathic medicine has safe and effective natural solutions for preventing allergies and their symptoms before they hit you hard. In case you haven't beat the symptoms, I can still help you manage them. Visit www.durhamnaturopath.com to book a complimentary consult to discuss how naturopathic medicine can help.
It can be hard to make healthy choices at the grocery store. Check out these simple tips to help you make healthy and smart choices for you and your family.
One of the most important things you can do to save money and make healthy food choices is plan ahead! Make a list of all the foods you need so you don’t get to the grocery store and buy things you already have at home but have forgotten about. If you’re very organized, you might even try to plan your meals out for the week. This not only saves you time in the long run but it’s a good way to stick to a budget and make healthy meals.
Now that you’ve organized your shopping list and planned your meals, head to the grocery store. To get the most nutrition out of your meals I like to stick to one simple, easy to follow rule… Shop the perimeter of the store. What does this mean? Buy the majority of your food for the week in the produce section. Fresh vegetables and fruits are an essential component of healthy meals. I like to buy tons of veggies and fruits, including kale, spinach, broccoli, apples, avocados, and celery, just to name a few.
Where to next? After produce, go to the fresh fish section. Salmon and cold water fish contain healthy amounts of dietary essential fatty acids that are good for everything from skin to heart health to mood and brain functioning. Try to make it a personal goal to eat fish at least once a week if you aren’t already.
What should avoid around the perimeter? The bakery! I tend to avoid this section completely because of the gluten and high amount of refined sugar in bread and baked goods. If you can’t avoid this section, try to cut down. Instead of sandwiches for lunch, I pack last night’s dinner leftovers which are usually veggies, a protein, and a complex carb such as brown rice or quinoa for me.
Next, head to the meat counter. Pick up some protein in the form of chicken, turkey, or lamb. Focus on white meats and try to limit red meat consumption. Red meat increases risk of cardiovascular problems amongst other health concerns.
Check out the natural foods section. I like to pick up raw nuts and seeds, organic oils (coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil), and almond milk here. Stock up if there are sales on things you like, for me that’s thing like nut butters and rice crackers. Be careful to read labels, yes, even in this section of the grocery store, a lot of ‘gluten free’ or ‘all natural’ food products can be filled with tons of fillers and sugars so be on the look out for things like this. You can also get organic, non-GMO brown rice, rice/veggie/lentil/quinoa pasta, and numerous wheat free flours and cereals in this section.
Head down to the frozen section, where you can find frozen berries and some frozen veggies. I tend to buy frozen mixed berries for smoothies and frozen veggies when the fresh veggies are out of season here.
Even though dairy is just around the corner, I tend to avoid this section all together. If you are a big dairy fan try buy organic/hormone free options or seek out dairy alternatives such as rice, almond, coconut milks.
By shopping the perimeter of the store you avoid unhealthy processed foods which tend to be down the middle aisles.
This wraps up your grocery store healthy shopping tour! Remember to buy local/seasonal and organic when possible. Buying local supports your community and eating organic lowers your exposure to harmful and potentially cancerous pesticides that are sprayed on foods. If you can’t afford to buy every organic, check out this list of the “dirty dozen” and “clean fifteen” for foods that you should be buying organic and others that are okay to buy in the non-organic section.
Hope this helps you make healthy and smart choices for meals for you and your family! If you have any comments or questions please feel free to share below!
By no means does failing feel good, believe me, I am not the first to fail at something nor am I the last. Everyone talks about what it takes to be successful but no one ever talks about failure. Well, failure is and will likely continue to be an inevitable part of life and it should be for good reason. Failure teaches us much about ourselves. Without failure there is no trying, and without trying there will be no success.
Here are 7 reasons failing is a good thing:
1. Failing is Important. Failing is an important, perhaps even an essential part of growing and learning about yourself and the world around you. It teaches you personal strength and fosters resilience. Failing leads to life experience and without that you wouldn’t be the person you are today.
2. Failing is Healthy. Although failing can temporarily lead to a period of stress, it gives us the opportunity to express emotions and cope with stress in healthy ways. Failing can provide us with the chance to transform our feelings or stress about our failures into a source of motivation. It is healthy to have personal goals, motivation, ambition, and determination that drive you towards success.
3. Failing Provides Perspective. Failing makes you appreciate the other aspects of your life, including your support system and the love you have around you. When I have failed I find my true friends waiting there to give me a shoulder to cry on and boost me up when I need it most. Failing provides you with a wider perspective on life, by showing you what is truly important – not a test score or a lost game – but love, support, and kindness.
4. Failing Gives You Knowledge. Usually, if you fail a test or a course you are required to retake it if you want to continue in a program or move up in your career. By studying for something again you gain a better knowledge of the subject matter and you end up knowing it better than before.
5. Failing Leads to Confidence. It may not seem logical but failing can lead to a strong level of self-confidence. If you remain positive and don’t give up you will ultimately succeed and you will feel on top of the world. By trying over and over you will gain and refine skills you may have never realized you had before.
6. Failing Leads to Success. Failing can create a drive in you. It makes you decide if something is worth fighting for. It makes you work hard. Failing teaches you to never let anything get in the way of your dreams. Having a strong work ethic and drive is the recipe for success.
7. Failing Fosters Positivity. The act of failing teaches you one of life’s greatest lessons which is to have patience with yourself. It makes you take a step back and think about the situation from another point of view. When you fail, you make a choice – you can choose to look at everything negatively or you can choose to remain positive and hopeful for your future efforts.
“Failure is so important. We speak about success all the time. It is the ability to resist failure or use failure that often leads to greater success. I’ve met people who don’t want to try for fear of failing.” – J.K. Rowling
Do you have difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep? Adults need, on average, 7-9 hours of sleep per night. If you’re not getting this you may feel tired, brain-fogged, have difficulty concentrating, and/or require naps/caffeine throughout the day.
Here are some simple solutions to get a better night’s sleep starting tonight:
Stick to a regular schedule. This means try to go to bed every night around the same time and wake at the same time, even on the weekends and holidays. Our bodies crave routine, our biological functions run on an internal clock system, called a circadian rhythm. Our circadian rhythm gives our body cues about light and temperature; it helps regulate our sleep according to a day-night cycle. The circadian system requires consistency to function properly, which is why having a bedtime schedule is essential.
Darken your room 30 minutes prior to sleep. Use black-out curtains and turn out any artificial light sources at least 30 minutes before you plan to go to bed. This automatically tells your body it is night and time to sleep.
Cut out any caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine. Caffeine, alcohol, and smoking can reduce the quality of your sleep or make sleep more difficult. Fluid intake prior to sleep may also lead to more frequent trips to the washroom during the night. Stop drinking caffeinated beverages at least 6 hours prior to sleep and stop drinking alcohol 3 hours prior to sleep. Quitting smoking is the best option for not only your health but can also significantly improve sleep.
Cut down on screen time. Turn off your computer, laptop, tablet, cellphone, television, and the list goes on. Shut down all your devices at least 1 hour before going to bed. These devices can be so ingrained in our lives so if you use a device as an alarm clock I recommend setting the device to silent and airplane mode – your alarm will still sound in the AM. Also, if you can, remove any devices from your room completely, especially if you don’t shut them down at night, this includes removing the TV! Try to use your bedroom for only sleep and intimacy.
Don’t overindulge before going to bed. Finish eating and exercising at least 2-3 hours prior to going to bed. Eating a healthy diet is beneficial for your health and can help with sleep. You may consider having a light snack of a tryptophan containing food (such as oats, dried dates, eggs, poultry, chickpeas, bananas, pumpkin or sunflower seeds) 30 minutes prior to bed to help induce sleep. Regular exercise can also promote a healthy sleep, but try not to do any strenuous exercise at least 4 hours prior to your bedtime.
If you have tried all these suggestions for 1-3 months and you’re still having difficulties with your sleep you may need some extra support. There are many natural solutions for sleep such as magnesium, melatonin, 5-HTP, L-Theanine, herbs including valerian, lavender, chamomile, and so many others. Before running out to the health food store to pick them all up make sure you consult your physician or naturopathic doctor to find one that is right for you.