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  • The Power of Individualized Medicine: A Case Study

    We are led to believe by most conventional doctors that the measurement of LDL and total blood cholesterol levels are the primary predictors for cardiovascular disease. If this were true, though, why is it that more than half the cases of patients having acute cardiovascular events have normal or even low cholesterol levels? The truth is, there is much, much more to cardiovascular disease than simply elevated cholesterol levels. The Patient There is a case that exemplifies this concept completely: The patient is a 72-year-old man with a history of repeated heart attacks and multiple bypass surgeries and arterial...

  • The Chicken or the Egg?

    It’s the age-old conundrum—which came first, the chicken or the egg? Similarly, as a student of Rolfing forty-odd years ago, we debated the question, “does structure determine function or does function determine structure?” Just as you can’t separate the body from the mind and vice versa, it is difficult to resolve the function/structure debate. I have had many years of experiencing clients prove both sides during my time as a Rolfer. Which Comes First? Several years ago, a client thought his teenage son would benefit from what he was learning and experiencing in his own Rolfing series. I soon...

  • Boost Your Immune System with Massage Therapy

    Many of the health benefits of massage therapy, such as decreased pain and stiffness and reduced stress and anxiety, are very well known. But did you know that receiving regular massage therapy is an effective way to boost your immune system? “Researchers working with patients with compromised immune systems have found massage therapy can improve how the immune system functions,” says Jeff Smoot, former President of the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA). “Those same benefits can translate to people seeking to fight off the common cold, flu, and other seasonal illnesses.” Clinical studies have demonstrated that in addition to...

  • Thermography – Not Just for Breast Health Anymore

    It is rather well known that thermography is incredibly effective in screening for breast cancer—it does not expose the body to radiation, is painless, noninvasive, and aids in detecting inflammation, disease, and cancer. However, thermography can also be used as a naturopathic screening: a proactive, whole-body approach to wellness. The Science behind the Screenings Thermography measures the infrared radiation (heat) that emits from the surface of the body. Areas of abnormality, pathology, or disease will be observed as either hot or cold depending on the metabolic activity. An ultrasensitive thermal camera and a sophisticated computer are used to convert...

  • Returning to “Normal”?

    Many of my recent conversations have involved the question, “When will things return to normal?” I am incredibly interested in these conversations. I always find myself asking, “What do you mean by returning to ‘normal’”? Do you mean returning to the way things were before—familiar, desired, or natural? I recall an incident I encountered as a young therapist over 40 years ago. I was meeting with a patient diagnosed as bipolar whose doctor had requested that I meet with her to convince her to take her medication. I explained that lithium was a salt that would reduce the highs...

  • Discover Who You Truly Are

    Deep into preparing for my “Love Your Inner Child” event on a bitterly cold, snowy weekend, I experienced one of those big “a-ha” moments. I had been working through a process of using childhood pictures of myself to connect with what I had been feeling at different points in my life. Why was I happy in this one, but sad in another? It started me journeying down the thread of my childhood. What emerged was the realization that I had built a fortress around myself, protecting my energy and learning how to survive, that had ultimately led to putting...

  • Transform Yourself – Starting with Your Health

    Are you struggling with getting rid of unwanted fat and building a stronger body? More people today are struggling with obesity and/or sarcopenia, an accelerated loss of muscle mass that puts you at high risk for falls, losing your independence and mortality from years of inactivity. No matter how much you improve your diet or exercise, it can be hard to shift stubborn pockets of fat or build muscle. For many people, these life-altering issues can lower confidence, destroy motivation, and lead to depression. Thankfully, a new treatment is available. Debuting in October of 2020, Emsculpt Neo is a...

  • It’s Time to Give Acupuncture a Try

    As an element of the ancient practice of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture has been used for thousands of years for a variety of reasons, from rebalancing the flow of energy to the treatment of pain. Almost since the advent of traditional Western medicine, the practice of acupuncture—put simply, inserting very thin needles in strategic areas on the body—for treatment has been dismissed as ineffective pseudoscience. However, due to its proven ability to reduce pain, treat depression and anxiety, and improve overall health, the acceptance and embrace of acupuncture within conventional medicine has grown by leaps and bounds in conventional...

  • Essential Oils Basics: A Look at These Time-Tested, Natural Therapies

    Have you been hearing all the chatter lately about the positive impact of essential oils (EOs) on well-being, but are not sure where to begin to become a healer in your own home? Keep reading for some EO evidence-based basics to help you get started. The Power of Essential Oils Essential oils have been used for their healing and aromatic properties in many cultures since as early as 3000 B.C. As extracted volatile, aromatic compounds from plant flowers, bark, leaves, resin, seeds, roots, or pith, EOs support human healing via the same active botanical constituents that function as the...

  • With Every Meal You’re Preventing Disease – Or Feeding It

    You have more than likely heard the expression, “you are what you eat.” When considering your nutrition, you probably think about weight (as you should); however, eating an intentional, mindful, nutrient-dense diet should also be about prevention. With every meal, you’re either preventing disease or feeding it. In fact, one of the mightiest weapons in the fight against chronic illness and diseases such as breast cancer may just be the fork! Eating for whole-body health is first and foremost, but it is important to know that food can play a key role in reducing the risk of breast cancer....

  • The Anatomy of a Healthy Diet

    Diet has an enormous impact on our overall health yet choosing the right one for you can be an overwhelming task, even with proper guidance. Before recommending a specific diet for a patient, I will first and foremost take their complete history, including their current complaints and concerns, and perform a focused physical exam. This provides me a portion of the person’s health “story.” I will ask what specific areas of their health they feel they need to work on—do they feel like they need to lose weight? If so, how much? Are they dealing with chronic symptoms they...

  • To Dairy or Not to Dairy – That Is the Question

    Dairy from cow’s milk, or from other animals such as goats, remains a controversial topic regarding its contribution to chronic conditions. I am going to unravel the issues here as best I can to help you successfully move forward with your decision of whether to keep dairy in your daily life. Yea or Nay to Dairy? Unbeknownst to the general population, there are studies that have determined that most of us are, at the very least, sensitive to dairy products. There is a smaller group of us who are dairy allergic, which can be a life-threatening condition that must...

  • Ask Dana! How to Plan for the Retirement You Deserve

    If you’re already thinking about retirement (it’s never too soon!), you’re probably thinking about it in terms of the “end of” something. The satisfying end of a successful career. The ending of a busy routine. The final reward for a lifetime of work. However, while you may feel the urge to close the book on your career, retirement is simply a new chapter—a new beginning. And just as you’ve meticulously planned every career move, you’ll need to plan just as much for retirement—and that starts with having a clear vision for your post-career goals. Focus on the Future When...

  • The Healing of Trauma as a Path to Individual – and Even World – Peace

    I have studied body-centered Gestalt therapy at Hartford Family Institute for the past 21 years and in that time I have learned many things, though perhaps none more important than this: Nothing can happen in therapy until a client can at least touch into the feeling of safety. Why is this true? Without a feeling of safety, we remain in fight, flight, freeze, or shut down. In other words, we remain in places of protection, of vigilance, places in which we cannot let our guard down to be open and connect. While our ability to fight, flee, freeze, or...

  • When Your Body Talks, LISTEN!

    There was a very loud bang that scared my seven-year-old dog, causing him to jump up and over, landing on my new puppy, who screeched and ran around my feet, tangling my ankles with his leash. I fell to the ground on my right knee and onto my right hip, like a sack of rocks, onto the hard pavement. People ran over to me to help as I lay on the sidewalk in West Hartford Center. As they helped me up, I got myself centered and continued our little walk. I felt okay, with just a bruise on my...

  • Prevent and Treat Inflammation – Naturally

    Chronic health issues seem to be continually on the rise in the U.S. In fact, the CDC indicates that 6 in 10 adults in the U.S. have at least one chronic disease, such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, chronic lung disease, stroke, and chronic kidney disease, among many others. And at the root of many of these diseases is a perhaps surprising culprit—inflammation, which results when the immune system is activated to attack foreign invaders in the body such as chemicals, pathogens, allergens, and inflammatory foods. It can also be a response to stress, which is increasingly common in...

  • Transform Your Financial Fitness Regimen

    When did you last take a leap and try something new and it paid off for you? Have you done it recently with your finances? Late last year, I confided in a dear friend that I was concerned about my physical health. Her compassionate response and what followed positively changed my life. It also inspired me to share the experience with others. I hope that through this metaphor, you will see that you can transform your financial fitness regimen and optimize your financial health. Finding What Works for You After I told my friend, Jessica*, that I was struggling...

  • Reduce Chronic Pain with CBD

    If you have been paying attention over the past year or so, you have probably noticed that CBD products are becoming more and more prevalent. Numerous studies have been performed over recent years that indicate that the usage and efficacy of CBD are incredibly far-reaching—products containing CBD are being used to treat conditions such as epilepsy, opioid addiction, PTSD, diabetes, arthritis, mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, and neurological issues. CBD can be found in everything from calming dog treats to heart health supplements. Perhaps most commonly, though, is the use of CBD to help alleviate otherwise...