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COVID-19 Immune Support

(Seattle, WA USA) Greetings from ground-zero of the novel coronavirus in the United States. Seattle has a vaccination rate of >80%, and no matter where you live, vaccination is your best defence against getting seriously sick. Symptoms of minor cases of Covid-19 infection are similar to a severe cold or flu and include: fever >101.5, …

Complex Cases: Medical Refugees

“Chronic Disease of any kind (in the absence of geneic or acquired immune deficiency) is never a single issue. In some proportion, the effectors listed feed into the terrain that allows the chronic illness to exist.” ~Paul Anderson, ND Naturopathic doctors and functional medicine providers are often seeking to help patients who have not been …

Functional Medicine Check-Up

Lab tests can be expensive. Without insurance, the ten tests I routinely order for adults to monitor and ensure optimal health would cost $1237. With special access to direct laboratory pricing, these tests are available through me for just $150. That’s 88% off, and less than a 20% insurance copay. Through 2017, new patients can …

A Functional Approach to Thyroid Health

Optimal thyroid hormone production is one of the most important factors to whole body health. In response to TSH signals from the pituitary gland, the thyroid gland produces the vital T4 and T3 hormones that set the basic metabolic rate for every cell in the body. This includes brain, heart, lung, bone, muscles, your immune …

How to Grow And Protect Your Brain Function

It was long believed that neurons in the human brain were incapable of growth and repair after maturity. We now know this to be false and that the human brain retains the potential for self-renewal throughout our lives. Even more exciting is that self directed neuroplasticity is a real possibility. Neuroplasticity: The ability of the …

Is the form of a supplement important?

The quick answer is yes. Absolutely. AND, we should always be looking first to spend our time and money on picking good foods high in the nutrients we are concerned about. For minerals, I do prefer zinc picolinate. For calcium and magnesium, I always recommend chelated forms, and there are many (citrate, malate, aspartate, etc.). …

Reduce and Manage Your Stress

One of my favorites ways to get patients to reduce and mediate their stress levels is to use a free “breath trainer” on their smart phone or computer. There are a lot of free apps to do this, and my favorite for the iPhones is Breathe+ and my pick for Android is MyCalmBeat. It’s as …

What does “normal” really mean when it comes to lab tests?

Naturopathic and functional medicine practitioners often interpret conventional labs more carefully than just a binary determination of “normal/abnoral”. There is good reason for this. A more careful look at lab values can an ammount to a life preserver for medical refugees who are castaways from strict interpretations. Shoe size is a good analogy regarding lab …

How do you help patients get off medications?

I frequently get asked by practitioners new to functional medicine how and when to take patients off of medications. When I am thinking of helping a patient get off a medication, I always have lifestyle, diet, and nutriceutical interventions in place first. The time to consider whether to taper off of a medication is after …

Adrenal Fatigue & Adrenal Insufficiency

The Adrenal Glands Gram for gram, the adrenal glands receive more blood flow than any other part of the body–including the heart and the brain. The body is an efficient machine, so this relatively massive dedication of blood flow is an indication of how important these often tiny organs are. Theysit on top of your …

Chronic Inflammation: The Fire Behind the Modern Epidemics

Inflamare: To set on fire. We are all familiar with classic signs of inflammation include: Heat, Redness, Pain, Swelling, Loss of function. While most of us associate inflammation with pain, acute, short-term inflammation is a normal and necessary part of the body’s response to injury or infection. Chronic low-grade inflammation is another, far more problematic, …

Correcting Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder (DSPD)

Getting enough sleep and high-quality sleep is critical to mental, emotional and physical health. Deep sleep is when your body makes the most growth hormone–the body’s own fountain of youth that keeps your body and mind feeling young and facilitates recovery from stress, injury and disease. First off, identifying and treating sleep apnea and snoring …

Using Mindfullness to Break Addictive Habbits

Meditation and other mindfulness practices have been used for thousands of years to help individuals promote, sustain and regain mental peace. Today’s functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has helped scientists identify and measure activity in the areas of the brain that meditation helps settle down in real time. The two areas that meditation settles down …

Improve Your Sleep for Optimal Health

Do you wake up feeling tired, foggy, achey? Do you tend to have a sore throat or a headache in the morning? If so, it’s likely that you have disturbed or insufficient sleep. Why is this important? Beyond just feeling tired, poor sleep is actually a leading cause of death and disease. Recent studies show …

Reducing “High-Priority” Toxic Exposures

Exposure to potentially harmful chemicals on a daily basis is virtually unavoidable. The majority of the 85,000 chemicals registered for production under the U.S. Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) were grandfathered in with little or no health and safety testing.1 Medical conditions linked to toxic chemicals include obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s and …

The Stories We Tell & Life’s Grand Show

Everyone has coping strategies. It’s less known that unconscious stories are frequently driving coping behaviors that trigger or mediate the presenting and quite real medical concerns. This holds true not just for psychological presentations like anxiety, depression, and ADD, but also nearly always plays some role in other medical conditions like fatigue, heart disease, migraine …

MTHFR Testing & Methy-Folate Dosing

Recently, there have been revolutions in the cost of genetic testing and methylation cycle SNP analysis. 23andme will run ~1,000,000 SNPs for $199, and GeneticGenie will isolate 30 methylation SNPs from the 23andme raw data for free. While the cycle’s various parts and levels of function are inherently interrelated, the focus has been largely been …

Testosterone Replacement Therapy: Skating on Thin Ice?

A recent VA study published in JAMA indicated that men taking testosterone replacement therapy had a 29% increased risk of stoke, MI and death. The VA study was observational, not a clinical trial, so it’s findings are of limited scope, but as there are now over 5-million prescriptions for testosterone therapy given in the US …

Attention Deficit Disorder & Adrenal Hormones

For starters, I take issue with the word “disorder” in attention deficit disorder (ADD). It’s not a stretch to suggest that ADD is actually a normal physiological response to the many insults of the modern world. The hyper-vigilance, distractibility, and impulsivity of ADD could all be predictable evolutionary adaptations intended to help us be safer …

Paleolithic Diets & Evolutionary Medicine

NPR’s health blog SHOTS posted an article about the Paleo Diet: The Paleo Diet Moves From The Gym To The Doctor’s Office. I’ll summarize and offer my thoughts below. Randolph Nesse, a professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Michigan, could be called the father of “evolutionary medicine.” He co-authored an influential paper …

Nutritional Neurotransmitter Support

Improving Mood, Clearing Perception & Breaking Addictions with Nutritional Neurotransmitter Support If you are struggling with anxiety, depression, obsessive tendencies, attention defecits or even some addictive tendencies, there is a good change that you could benefit from a leg-up in the form of nutritional neurotransmitter support. The human body uses chemical messengers in the form …

A Sane Response to Anxiety & Depression

One in ten Americans are now taking antidepressants. Is this at all shocking? Hardly. I think increasing levels of depression and anxiety are a natural response to the increasingly bizarre and unhealthy environment modern humanity is living in. Check it out. We have: a global population bursting at the seams, increasingly stressful & sedentary jobs, …

Medical Refugees & Navigating Conventional & Alternative Health Care

Complementary and alternative medical (CAM) clinics are serving as the de facto refugee camps for people with health conditions that are not addressed by “conventional” medicine. CAM clinics are staffed by licensed Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) and Integrative Medical providers who blend conventional healthcare with  alternative diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. The 2007 National Health Interview Survey …

The Human Evolution Project

Health Challenges Today Whether you are already well or dealing with a chronic illness or injury, finding and maintaining our optimal health today is a personal journey. It is also often one of  personal evolution as we learn how to better align our strengths and weaknesses with our modern lives. For these reasons, I call …