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  • How Traditional Chinese Medicine Improves Digestion

    Imagine you are about to cook something. Assuming you have already prepped your ingredients, what is the first thing you do? You turn on the stove. Fire is a necessary component of cooking. Likewise, from a Chinese medicine perspective, fire is needed in the body in order to properly break down the foods we eat in order to utilize the nutrients they contain. Before we are born, we receive all the nutrients we need to sustain us through the umbilical cord. Once that cord is severed, our digestive system becomes fully responsible for manufacturing all the qi/energy and blood...

  • 10 Steps to a Healthier and Youthful Brain

    Understanding brain health is more important than ever these days. It is estimated that at least 5 million people have dementia in the United States; worldwide, it is close to 50 million people. Most adults know someone suffering from one form or another. The primary type of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States. It kills more people than breast and prostate cancer combined. Between 2000 and 2018, deaths from Alzheimer’s disease increased by 146%. One out of every three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s disease or other type of dementia. The...

  • Reversing Prediabetes to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

    A diagnosis of prediabetes increases your risk for type 2 diabetes, but it does not necessarily follow that you will be afflicted with the disease. You can begin to reverse your condition with changes in your lifestyle, diet, and mental outlook. Various healing modalities, including dietary supplements and certified pure tested grade essential oils (EOs), can also provide valuable support. What Is Prediabetes? The islets of Langerhans, irregularly shaped patches of endocrine tissue located in the pancreas, secrete the anabolic hormone insulin. Insulin regulates glucose, the sugar from food that the body uses for energy when it enters the...

  • Protect Your Immune System Naturally This Holiday Season

    The glorious fall days are upon us, along with their promises of pumpkin-picking excursions, Thanksgiving, and all the special holidays, including ringing in the New Year! Along with these enjoyable anticipations there is, somewhere in the background, the uneasy awareness that the winter months are almost here. For some, winter is a gift—winter sports, brisk walks, bonfires, and the pristine beauty of snow. For many of us, however, the challenge of keeping our immune system functioning well in the face of the many stresses that comes with winter and the holiday season looms large. Not to worry! With a...

  • Does Bottle Feeding Cause Sleep Apnea in Children?

    As parents, we always try to do the best for our kids. We believe in breastfeeding; many health-conscious parents go out of their way to find organic, natural, non-GMO food to provide their kids with the best, safest nutrition. And though we put in that extra effort, there are times we are unable to provide the best for our children. We all know that nutrition and an active lifestyle play a significant role in raising healthy children. However, many of us are unaware of a significant issue our kids may face—being able to breath regularly. We can live without...

  • Spiritual Health for Today’s Woman

    As I reflected on the topic of spiritual health and pondered how I would bring this message to women, I had to go deep into my own heart. What is spiritual health, and how do I translate the many years of deep exploration and seeking of my own truth and health on all levels, body, mind, soul, and spirit? There has always been a calling, a desire to know who I was from a very young age. Due to a birth trauma I almost died from, it makes sense to want to understand why I chose life. When someone...

  • A Metaphysical Dive into the Dynamics of the Pandemic

    As a licensed integrative/addictions psychotherapist and spiritual scientist, I weave ancient wisdoms of psychology with contemporary philosophy to treat emotional trauma and addictive process. I believe the collective body of our world is a physical representation of the world’s internal soul’s experience—COVID-19 was “allowed” to happen because of the diminishment and loss of existential meaning (soul purpose) in the world. Instead, EGO focus (Edging God Out) represented by money, greed, power, global elitism, technology, workaholism, substance use disorders, addiction to the Reader’s Digest view of life, toxic eating, and compulsive self-reliance became the newly glamorized “drugs of choice.” Technocrats...

  • Soups: The Ultimate Comfort Food

    If your eyes aren’t welling up and your nose isn’t running, you’re simply not getting your money’s worth from winter cooking. This is the season we go from buying individual onions to buying bags of onions. The season we use the big pot, eat with the big spoon, and noisily slurp what’s left in the bottom of the mug. This is the season of soup, and in New England, it is as essential to winter as snow falling from the sky and crack-of-dawn school cancellations. Soups are perfect one-dish meals, quintessential heart-warming bowls of goodness, and so much more....

  • Ask Dana! A Column Where Personal Finance and Life Intersect

    The clock is ticking! With the end of the year approaching, here are some important financial planning and tax reminders to consider before 2021 is in the rearview mirror. Eight Important Reminders for 2021 1. Your income in 2021. Now is the time to assess what your expected 2021 taxable income will be. One major consideration that makes tax planning crucial this year are the policy proposals on the table that could increase taxes and capital gains, among other tax code changes. Also, similar to what we saw in 2020, many jobs and income levels changed this year due...

  • The Art of Patience

    We, as a society, are impatient. We want everything NOW, if not sooner. I am guilty of this myself, and as I grow older and as our world speeds up, it has become clearer to me that patience truly is a virtue and a learned behavior. We all need to learn to flex that muscle and keep it fluid in our lives. The Waiting Game Last April, I decided that I very much wanted a new door to my home, and very much needed a new door for my office entrance. I jumped right on it—beautifying my surroundings has...

  • Give Yourself the Gift of Being Heard

    Do you enjoy feeling heard and understood? My clients and I do, too. Over time, clients have graciously referred to me as their “sounding board,” “thought partner,” and “trusted advisor.” Together we create a safe space that is free of judgment to talk about what is important to them. This healthy environment is conducive to conversation and enables me to understand both what clients like about their finances as well as their financial pain points. With this information, I can advise clients on their financial choices so they can make informed decisions and optimize their financial health. As we...

  • Massage Therapy as Treatment for Fibromyalgia

    Fibromyalgia is a pain condition that is fairly common throughout the United States. Although there is no cure, there are various treatment options available. According to the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), “massage therapy can be a beneficial part of an integrative treatment plan for those who suffer with fibromyalgia syndrome.” What Is Fibromyalgia? Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by muscle pain and tenderness throughout the body. More specifically, symptoms consist of chronic pain in muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other soft tissues; fatigue and difficulty sleeping; headaches; and cognitive difficulties. According to the National Institutes of Health, it is...

  • Low Levels of Vitamin D Increase Risk of Breast Cancer

    When you think of breast health, do you think of vitamin D? Well, you should! Research has found that women with low levels of vitamin D are at a higher risk for breast cancer. Here’s what you need to know. The 411 on Vitamin D Vitamin D is not a vitamin—technically, it’s a steroid hormone that affects over 200 genes and is necessary for the health of every cell in the body. Vitamin D has to be “activated” for it to be effective and most tissues in the body have cellular receptor sites where this happens. It affects a...

  • Are You Touch Deprived?

    Who isn’t completely stressed out these days? With the ongoing pandemic, intense political climate, and civil unrest, we are all on edge more than ever. We are also touch deprived, which has a greater impact than most people realize. It can be intensely overwhelming and the impact to our bodies can be dramatic. Fight or Flight Stress creates a “fight or flight” response in the brain, which causes adrenaline to rush through our veins; that moment when we feel, see, taste, and hear even more clearly and sharply. We get that charged moment when our bodies naturally want to...

  • Mindful Wandering in Nature

    We can receive messages from the divine wherever we are, at any time. On a recent hike at Hidden Valley Preserve, I practiced wandering with intention, mindfully present to whatever may arise. What has arisen during my mindful wandering has brought me many lessons and many messages that I apply to my own life, and that I use as lessons to share with my clients. Mindful practices allow us to name and bring our awareness to whatever may be happening in the moment. Emotion, feelings, and sensations are all part of our experience. Practicing allowance with compassion teaches us...

  • Chronic Pain: Treating the Invisible Disorder

    Almost all of us have encountered pain at some point, usually in its acute form. However, chronic pain is different and can frequently lead to restricted mobility, problems concentrating, sleep troubles, and depression. Chronic pain is an invisible illness that impacts millions in the U.S. Science has achieved significant advancements to help those affected by this sometimes-debilitating problem. At the Breiner Whole-Body Health Center, we are focused on technological advances in the industry and remain hopeful about the future; we continue to offer superior treatments for chronic conditions that provide real, lasting results. What Is Chronic Pain? Chronic pain...

  • What Does Your Tongue Say about You?

    Ever look at your tongue and think: “That isn’t NORMAL?!” “What in the world does that mean?” “I haven’t seen that before!” If you have never looked at your tongue with intrigue and curiosity, start! Check out your tongue before reading further. Is it red, cracked, and thin with little to no coat? If so, you may be experiencing hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and irritability. Or if are you experiencing fatigue, loose stools, spontaneous sweating, and worry, your tongue likely has teeth marks and is pale with a thin white coat. The Tongue as a Diagnostic Tool Your...

  • How to Be Fabulous Over 50

    Aging is a natural part of life. Physiologically, during a process called sarcopenia, our bodies lose 3–5% of our muscle mass after age 30. Our fascia, the connective tissue that webs our bodies together, also begins to dry out and become tougher, creating more stiffness and further inhibiting the way our muscles move. Exercise alone is not the answer; there are many factors involved in supporting healthy aging: eating well, sleeping well, exercising well, reducing levels of inflammation, and most importantly—getting Rolfed! It’s time to look seriously at what you can do to help yourself. Better sooner than later,...

  • Softer Skin Than You’ve Had in Years

    I had the pleasure of sitting down with Spa Director—Clinical Aesthetician Laura Duffany—atThe Spa at Litchfield Hills to talk about the hottest new trends in skincare! Laura has worked with plastic surgeons and medical doctors and has cultivated a strong and knowledgeable skincare team at the spa. Her favorite lines are OSEA and Skinceuticals for spa facials and daily skincare regime. The spa offers dermaplaning, medical grade peels, and microdermabrasion, among other skincare services. Dermaplaning One of the trendiest exfoliation options today is dermaplaning, which is performed using a sterile surgical scalpel (not as scary as it sounds!) to...

  • Treat Symptoms Before They Arise with Anti-Aging Medicine

    Doctors are trained to diagnose medical conditions and apply the correct treatment for those diagnoses. In anti-aging medicine, doctors attempt to do more than treat disease after it has arisen; they also apply methods that may slow or prevent the development of disease. There are symptoms of aging that may not be diagnosed as a medical condition, and anti-aging medicine focuses on improving those symptoms. Anti-aging medicine aims to enhance a person’s health and reduce the symptoms of aging, not simply treat disease as it arises. Three key aspects of anti-aging medicine discussed here are: Optimal health practices for...

  • Breast Cancer Screening Under 40: Bridging the Gap

    You probably know women who have been diagnosed with a life-changing, life-threatening disease at a young age, but you never think it can happen to you. If you’re age 40 or younger you may think you’re too young to develop breast cancer, but that’s far from the truth. While breast cancer is most typically diagnosed in post-menopausal women (50 or older), it’s a disease that can and does affect young women as well. Other than a physical exam of the breasts during a GYN visit, there are no routine breast cancer screenings advised for young women. In fact, physicians do...

  • Erectile Dysfunction (ED): Natural Ways to Address Its Complexities

    Did you know that erectile dysfunction (ED) is very common among American men of all ages and that the risk of its development increases with age? Understanding its causes and adopting natural ways to address its complexities can help tackle its power to undermine self-confidence, quality of life, and intimate relationships. Erection Physiology A penile erection is essentially a spinal reflex that is generated through the complex interplay of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems (reflex aspect), combined with local genital stimulation and/or stimulation from erotic or emotional stimuli that involves the limbic system of the brain (psychological aspect)....

  • Aging Gracefully

    One of the plagues of aging is falling—even perfectly healthy seniors with no pre-existing medical problems have a greater chance of taking a tumble than someone younger. Nationwide, an older (over 65) person is in the ER every eleven seconds due to a fall. By age 85, two-thirds of all injury-related deaths are due to a fall. In 2013, approximately 50% of traumatic brain injury cases were due to elderly. Since 2014, twenty-nine million elderly Americans sustained injuries resulting from a fall, amounting to health costs of $31 billion! Furthermore, 95% of hip fractures happen in our older population,...

  • The Pathway to Self-Care

    Healthy aging is our birthright and yes, it can be yours at any age! We have been conditioned to believe that aches, pains, body issues, brain fog, emotional issues, incontinence, decreased libido, and so on, automatically come with aging. This is an old paradigm and an unrealistic way of thinking. For more than a century, our belief systems have been connected to a society that has focused on disease rather than health; on treating illness rather than preventative healthcare. The messages we are being sent have not been supportive of healthy living, nor do they invite and empower you...