Monday, May 28, 2007

The Therapeutic Order

This is the direction healing should take from beginning to end.
1. Identify and Remove causes of disease
2. Establish a Healthy Regimen
3. Stimulate the Self Healing Mechansims
4. Support Weakened or Damaged Systems
5. Correct Structural Integrity
6. Address Pathology
7. Suppress Pathology

I like to check back in with the Therapeutic order once and awhile to make sure I am sticking to my ideals about healing and the philosophy central to Naturopathic Medicine. I beleive this order of healing transcends modalities, and is more about restoring balance to the patients underlying vitality than utilizing any specific treatment method. This is crucial as practioners. It is easy to get wrapped up in the newest herb, or procedure, or pharmaceutical drug... and then find oneself quickly prescribing it to every patient regardless of the individual imbalance from which each patient may suffer.
Hopefully this rememberence now and then will allow me to share this more clearly with my patients through my actions, thoughts, and words. I beleive it is crucial that the patient also grasps this understanding. Then they are more likely to embrace the changes necessary to support total healing. This is the ultimate goal.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Big change happening

I have not posted for almost 2 weeks. My life has been full of turmoil, as they often can be, and I just have not been able to get to my blog. But as I begin to see my way through the chaos, I am relieved and inspired by what my future may hold. New growth and possibilities are more vivid after the storm.
And my new future is bringing my Naturopathic/Homeopathic practice across the Charles River to Cambridge, which fortune has also made my home town. I am leaving the comfort of the Brookline location after one excellent year and embarking on my own journey. The time is right. So I have elected to take the necessary steps in order to continue to serve the patients I have grown so fond of with the kind of holistic care they are entitled to. I look forward to seeing faces, new and old at my new office starting in June, 2007. Thanks for everything.

Vital Force Naturopathy
46 Pearl Street
Cambridge, MA 02139

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Chocolate for Mother's Day

A gift from and for the heart.

Dark chocolate is rich in polyphenol antioxidants – phytochemicals found naturally in the cocoa bean. The antioxidant properties have been demonstrated in numerous studies, both in the laboratory as well as in human trials.

Dark chocolate has also been shown to inhibit platelet reactivity, which may reduce the formation of clots.

The polyphenol’s antioxidant activity is related to the foods with which it is consumed. Dairy has been shown in the lab to decrease the antioxidant activity of polypehnols at the cellular level. This likely explains why the health benefits of chocolate are observed in dark chocolate and cocoa powder, while not in milk chocolate and white chocolate.

Dark chocolate is not a health food. It is a delicious delight with some beneficial health properties. The health benefits are greatest in chocolate that is at least 60% cocoa. It is not recommended to look to dark chocolate to supply your needed antioxidants, any more than it is recommended to look to red wine.

Dark chocolate is an indulgence to enjoy in moderation.

Share some with mom, she deserves it.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Basic Naturopathy

The reasons why we want to be healthy are limitless. Naturopathic medicine answers how we can live, become, and maintain health.

Naturopathic medicine grows forth from two foundations, a science base and a philosophical base. The basic sciences mirror those of the conventional heroic practices such as allopathic and osteopathic medicine. Naturopathic Doctors are trained and licensed as primary care physicians with an emphasis in natural therapeutics and preventative medicine. (

The philosophy of Naturopathic medicine provides the distinction between this traditional form of healing and the newer conventional ideals. There are six underlying premises on which the philosophy is based:

· First Do No Harm - primum non nocere
· Support the Healing Power of Nature, “the Vital Force” - vis
  medicatrix naturae
· Discover and Treat the Cause - tolle causam
· Treat the Whole Person - tolle totum
· The Physician is a Teacher – docere
· Prevention is the best "cure"

To embrace this philosophy, Naturopathic Doctors treat every patient as an individual and personalize the treatment accordingly using homeopathic, botanical, nutritional, physical medicine, life-style counseling, hydrotherapy, and much more. This patient-centered approach is uniquely refreshing. Naturopathic principles apply across both acute and chronic illness, for young and old, male and female alike.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Basic Men's Health

To live and be healthy is generally simple. It is just not always easy. This is my attempt to share the straightforward things that can be done daily to have a pronounced impact in our life.

We are ultimately what we eat. Eat fresh and raw food in its most natural state. Build your meals and snacks around protein, vegetables, and fruits. In moderation enjoy whole grains, no more than 2 to 3 servings a day, and wheat should account for no more than one of the servings. Enjoy dairy moderately, it is acceptable to have low-fat dairy, as long as the fat is not replaced by sugar. Avoid processed and refined foods of all types at all times. Drink half of your weight in ounces of water daily. Limit or avoid completely all sweetened beverages.

Strive for gaining your essential nutrients from the healthy foods that you choose. In addition, supplement your healthy and complete diet with a quality multi-vitamin and mineral supplement, a pharmaceutical grade fish oil providing at least 1000 mg each DHA and EPA daily, and an additional high quality B-complex. For an average male this should provide the necessary nutrients and co-factors to maintain optimal health.

Exercise will require a daily effort. It is too easy today to live our lives in a recumbent position. For at least 30 minutes go out of your way to support a healthy body. The thirty minutes need not be consecutive. The most crucial component for this exercise recommendation is variation. During the week there needs to be at least 1 day addressing each of the following: strength, balance, endurance, and flexibility. Too often we support our body in only 1 of these areas. It is acceptable to combine areas in one workout.

Stress Management
Stress will be present at work, at home, in relationships, pretty much everywhere we go. We need healthy and effective outlets for our emotional stress. Creating a meditative ritual is crucial to releasing this stress in a healthy manner. Aggressive sports and recreation do not qualify as meditative and in many cases promote stress in our lives.

Health requires balance, structure, and discipline. This formula is not secret, it is the same key to success throughout life.