By Dr. Alisha Rawji ND
Happy Spring everyone! As the snow starts to melt and the days are getting longer, it’s easy to feel a new sense of renewed energy and optimism, especially this time of year. Of course, as things are continuing to look up it’s still very important to make sure that we are managing our stress and anxieties so that we are keeping ourselves at our optimum health.
Likewise, even though the sun is shining, and we’re getting ourselves outside and seeing our friends and family more than we did during our winter in hibernation, times of stress can manifest for everyone at any time, in any season, and throughout life’s many stressful times and situations. Here are some health considerations to take in mind when you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed:
Sleep. This is the main reset for both our bodies and our minds, and if it isn’t functioning optimally, it’s very easy to negatively feed other issues we’re dealing with – chief among them our stress levels. Sleep can be measured in both sleep quantity (how long or how many hours we get each night) and also sleep quality i.e. if we stay asleep consistently throughout the night without tossing and turning, or if we feel refreshed upon waking.
Proper sleep can help lower our stress levels throughout the day, as we will feel more refreshed and clear-headed to help us deal with life’s stressors, make better decisions, and feel less stressed and more at peace throughout the day overall. This is one of the main facets of health that I like to help individuals improve if they’re feeling stressed out.
There may be underlying reasons as to why one’s sleep is off including (but not limited to) anxiety, depression, overthinking due to important decisions or excess stress, sleep apnea, hormonal disturbances or adrenal imbalances, and cortisol dysregulation. Some other factors may be a lack of sleep hygiene which could be not sleeping on time, having too much screen time before bed, or not having a successful method to turn your mind off such as meditation techniques, or lack of exercise or activities throughout the day.
Hormone regulation. It isn’t uncommon for stress to be compounded during times where hormones aren’t adequately balanced, and this may even be more pronounced for women. Progesterone, estrogen, and even testosterone are factors that rise and fall naturally in a cycle, and more so in times of stress. Also, if any hormonal dysregulation is present due to conditions one may or may not be aware of – especially if you’ve never had values tested before. Of course, during a women’s natural cycle these values can also rise and fall, and even more if they’re peri-menopausal, post-menopausal, or post-natal i.e. after given birth, as well. These changes can be difficult to navigate through, however, support using hormonal testing, as well as vitamins, foods, herbs, and Chinese medicine can be very effective in balancing hormones, and decrease stress as a result.
Vitamin deficiencies: Sometimes we might not be getting the proper vitamins and minerals, from our current diet and lifestyle and this can certainly be adding to our stress levels. Vitamins, minerals, protein, iron, and healthy fats, are all important co-factors to building up proper levels of serotonin, dopamine and other necessary neurotransmitters needed for proper and healthy regulation of brain chemistry. After a consultation with an individual, we can determine if there may be any deficiencies present based on what they eat, how much sunshine they’re getting, how their signs and symptoms present, as well as any lab work they’ve brought in. Often times, I may suggest hormonal or other necessary testing, which can give a great indication about where imbalances are present and base an individualized treatment plan based on this.
What can we do about this?? Lots, in fact! I find that isolating the source of stress as much as possible, is the best place to start. This is the most accurately done by booking in a naturopathic visit so that I can gather as much information about an individual as possible. I’ll ask very detailed questions about how one is sleeping, what they’re eating, what kind of routine blood work they’ve gotten from their previous medical appointments as well as all previous and current medical history, signs and symptoms and how they’re experiencing them. As well as any medications or supplements they’re currently (or previously taken), as well as taking any vitals or necessary physical exam to determine what other information may be needed. All of these together give me an indication about what the best natural treatments are available for them:
Sleep hygiene and relaxation mechanisms: going to sleep at the same or at least similar times each night can help balance our sleep-wake cycles, also known as our circadian rhythms. Doing so, will help balance out our main stress and sleep hormones (known as cortisol and melatonin) naturally. Furthermore, if we’re participating in activities such as yoga, meditation, tai chi, even journaling and working through stressful thoughts and feelings can do wonders for lowering our overall stress responses. Adding to this notion, it is also imperative to seek help and support from a licenced psychologist who can help you work through a lot of these emotions, and can help provide you with helpful tools. It can also be helpful to seek care from a Life Coach, if you’re struggling with feeling stuck in your head or with decisions involving your professional, or personal life decisions.
Balance those hormones! Sleep, can help reset this for sure, however we are all individuals and are often dealing with many different types of signs and symptoms and imbalances. Whether it be during a certain part of our cycles: menstruation, post-natal issues, and menopause being some of the more common reasons. Although we also need to screen for any major hormonal abnormalities such as endometriosis, fibrosis, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), or any others you might not have been screened for. Hormones testing via blood, but mainly via urine testing can give a great idea about what may be going on. This can also be done for men, who may not know they have hormonal imbalances though struggle with sleep, excess stress, low sex drive, erectile dysfunction or others signs and symptoms that may be present. Any or all of these, can be due to an imbalance of hormones, and in both men and women can present with things like hair loss, excess anger or emotionality, weight gain, or even brain fog, as well as an overall fatigued, irritable or sluggish demeanour. I find that pinpointing these issues, is the first step in treating it effectively. The use of specific vitamins, minerals, and herbs as well as many types or oral supplements can drastically help this, especially if taken on a consistent basis. Liver detoxing and gut health can further help make sure that extra (known as exogenous) hormones and toxins are effectively broken down and excreted in the liver and kidneys to promote adequate health and balance overall.
Vitamins and mineral IV/injection support – I love this one! I find that these treatments help individuals very quickly since vitamins and minerals administered this way are absorbed at a 100% absorption rate. Since vitamins are delivered straight into the system via intermuscular (IM) injections or intravenous (IV/directly into the blood stream), it doesn’t need to be processed by the gut or intestines; which is what needs to occur if you’re taking them orally (or by mouth). This is especially important and vital as a tool if an individual has any kind of gut absorption issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), celiac disease (gluten processing disorder), or irritable bowel disease (IBD) such as crones or colitis. As well, if one has leaky gut (intestinal imperialities), multiple food sensitivities, or have issues such as candida overgrowth, or SIBO (small intestinal bacteria overgrowth). The reason is, that if you have issues that are impeding your gut or intestines, you may not be able to absorb vitamins and minerals using oral supplements. Vitamin and mineral support by IV/injections are exceptionally useful for maximizing the dosage, as well as are safe to administer since they are water soluble therefore will be excreted through the system and urine in a similar way, as usual. As well, those who don’t eat meat, or have strict vegetarian/vegan diets may also benefit from this, since they’re likely not getting adequate B-vitamins from food, especially B12. It is best to get B12 values checked, via lab-work to see if this is something that may be beneficial. Adrenal supportive injections are incredible ways to balance out cortisol, and stress hormones – giving the body the ability to feel less stress, and more energy overall.
Traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture: Also, a fan-favourite! I find acupuncture can be helpful, not only to help for muscle pain, but for balancing out one’s energies, or Qi, in Chinese medicine. I find those who do one or more acupuncture treatments, report a significant decrease in their stress, anxiety and mood issues, overall. They’re also able to sleep better and feel more flow in their minds, bodies, and overall wellbeing.
Vitamin D3, omega 3s, magnesium, and other herbs and minerals (in various doses), depending on each individual, can be very helpful to reduce stress, and increase happiness and sleep, and helps individuals feel lighter, and even think more clearly.
Based on the recommendations after an initial intake (or even a pre-treatment-screen), I will assess both sign, symptoms, and physical markers I have access to, come up with the best laid treatment plan for you, to help you feel not only less stressed, but feeling like your best self!
Give us a shout – I’d love to help you out to be the very best that you can be!
by Dr. Alisha Rawji ND
IV therapy stands for Intravenous Therapy. Vitamins and minerals are administered directly into the venous system which allows for 100% absorption into the body via the blood stream, and into the cells via diffusion. The Liver IV, is wonderful for speeding up the cleansing and detoxification processes of the liver, especially if one has been exposed to toxins such as environmental pollutants, or excessive alcohol consumption for example. Especially after wild stampede party or company bbq…
When alcohol breaks down, it forms compounds called aldehydes. Aldehyde build-up in high amounts in the bloodstream can be toxic to the liver, and when it builds up too much, can cause many of the typical hangover symptoms such as: nausea, vomiting, light-headedness, fatigue, weakness, irritability, headaches, muscle and body aches, loss of memory, and loss of consciousness.
Glutathione, is the most abundant antioxidant found in the body. It is very poorly absorbed orally, and therefore it is very commonly added as a liver detoxification agent in an IV therapy protocol. Taurine and Magnesium also have added benefits for not only liver detoxification, but also for brain function and overall health.
When aldehydes build up, glutathione gets depleted. Glutathione is also known as the ‘mother of all antioxidants’ – and it truly is. It is vital in detoxifying (turning over toxic agents into non-toxic forms) in the body, and works within liver cells to do this. Glutathione is absolutely vital, therefore, in liver detoxification by clearing toxic aldehyde buildup in the liver, and is, very important in the prevention of hangovers symptoms. Glutathione is also very well researched in the management of liver disorders and is known to have anti-aging and antioxidant effects. As well, it is very poorly absorbed orally (by mouth); therefore IV therapy (or injections) are the most effective ways to administer glutathione into the body.
Finally, alcohol works as a diuretic, which means one will excrete fluid at a high rate through urination. This causes a large amount of dehydration, due to loss of both water and electrolytes, as well as water-soluble vitamins such as B-vitamins, vitamin c, magnesium, and other trace minerals. This rapid elimination can further exacerbate vitamin and minerals deficiencies; which is why, replenishment via IV therapy can greatly help liver health due to excessive drinking, and can also be helpful for elimination of toxins from the body, in general.
For more information, or to find out how to book in an IV therapy treatment, contact Docere Wellness Centre at email@example.com or call 403-452-6262.
by Jolene Tse RMT, CIMI, CR, URM, KRM, MMP,
Practitioner / Light Language Transmission / Sound Bath Meditation Facilitator / Moving Meditation Facilitator
Modern reflexology is based on an ancient form of therapy. There is evidence of some form of foot and hand therapy practiced in China as long ago as 4,000 B.C. and also at the same time in Egypt, as depicted in the tomb of Ankmahor. The North American Indigenous tribes are also known to have practiced a form of foot therapy for hundreds of years.
Reflexology was introduced to the U.S.A in 1913 by William Fitzgerald, a medical doctor who specialized in ear, nose and throat issues. His findings and techniques were later evolved in the 1930’s-1940’s by Eunice Ingham, a practicing nurse and physiotherapist. She claimed that the hands and feet were extra sensitive and mapped the entire body in reflexes, zones and meridians on the feet.
Traditional reflexology techniques are offered with the integration of sound and energetic medicine. Gentle reflexology techniques of pressure/release presentation are used on the soles of the feet, top of the foot and around the ankle region.
Transformational frequencies are integrated through the use of sound and energetic medicine, creating harmonic resonance within the be-ing as a whole. Tuning forks are intuitively placed on regions of the feet and/or hands and/or face to assist and support whole body and be-ing transformation. The recipient is fully clothed with feet and ankles exposed, lying comfortably on the table (either prone or supine). Soft and nourishing music plays in the background, surrounding the recipient with love and light of the multidimensional realms.
Experience, and receive this expansive offering transcendence creating your “zen” space!
1.0hr session (Hands &/or Feet) $ 85.00
1.5hr session (Hands, Feet, Face) $ 115.00
Massage therapy was my entrance into the health and wellness profession this lifetime. During my 20+ years of practice. I continually gather tools to expand my well be-ing and inturn share those with whomever crosses my path. I clearly re-member one of my teachers introducing energy healing and transformation to our massage class, so many years ago. Little did I realize that this would soon be the path that I would begin to know and re-member in great depths of the infinite! He was different than the “scientific/medical” teacher, but he just “knew”! I was fortunate to begin working in the health and wellness industry in 1998, before I even graduated from the Orthopaedic Institute. So, Massage Therapy became a foundation and launch pad for many great learnings! And, as my journey would have it, I required healing and chose to receive it from another source outside of western medicine and the pharmaceuticals. It was through Reiki, that I began my healing and transformational process ……and it has been a colorfully, fantasmic journey since! The most transformational moments were those when I first loved myself! The experience was beyond sharing in the human language…..and each moment of expanding the love for myself to create a love of my wholeness has been incredible! It is an infinite journey of universes that reside within and around me!…. and I am loving every moment of this life!!
My divine purpose as a lightworker illuminates with love, compassion and joy! I am one of the many who are assisting in the “awakening” (raising of consciousness levels) of hu-manity and of mother earth… Master of Light! I facilitate the healing through an alchemy of Massage therapy, Sound, Vibration and Energetics. My hearts’ continual desire for connecting pieces of the divine template within me has guided me into experiencing various teachings and courses of self-exploration… igniting lifetimes of remembering and connection to source/creator!! As I continue my personal journey, I share knowings, wisdoms and learnings in the fields of Acutonics & Fibonacci Process; Sound Healing and transformation through Crystal/Alchemy & Tibetan Singing Bowls; Firewalking; Gemstone & Ascended Master Aromatherapy; Massage Therapy (Relaxation, Therapeutic, Pre-Natal); Infant Massage Instruction; Millenium Method; Traditional Native & Elemental Teachings; Sacred Rays of Light; Sound & Vibration Reflexology; Usui & Karuna Reiki Master; Voice & Light Language; Yuen Method. I also facilitate group offerings (private and public), Sound Meditation and Moving Meditation.
You will also dis-cover expansion of explanations here, supporting the logical mind and the heart centered 🙂
I have experience working with and supporting individuals of all ages!…..and love and am grateful for every moment! Experience your transformational session, as you continue your journey of self love and transformational self dis-covery! There are tools around each and every one of you, supporting you in healing, transforming and transcending “issues.” Many of which are related to EGO (what is created by the mind = everything other than love, compassion and joy) and encodings passed on from ancestory ( DNA/Energetic). Journey beyond the western medical structure and experience an awakening of understanding your own vibration and how life happens for you and by you!
You have the ability to create and be the change that you wish for in your life, mother earth and for hu-manity! Honour your beautiful, loving, divine essence! Invest in yourself!
I offer Massage Therapy &/or Integrative sessions specifically created for you in the moment!! These opportunities of transformation (of aches & pains, fears, anger, sadness, grief, worth, stillness ect) offer you feelings of be-ing lighter, brighter and ……new! Shedding old vibrations in the hu-man forms of patterns (thought, practices etc), DNA activations and more….. within the expansion of knowing and loving who you are- the purity and light that resides within…and allowing the physical body to ascend in frequency too! Transforming and transcending vibrational frequencies that no longer serve your space of be-ing….. Explore the realms beyond! … Explore the sciences of Quantum Physics, Cymatics and Acoustics!
Multidimensional vibrations of peace, love and joy are offered to you as you travel within your infinite universe of opportunities and possibilities!
Blessings to you filled with love, light and crystalline rainbow rays! In gratitude for all that I am and to all that are of my universe….Namaste. And it is so. Jolene Tse 🙂 www.illuminousvibrations.com
Challenging negative thinking patterns and behaviors
Dr. Alisha Rawji Bsc, ND.
“In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you.” –Deepak Chopra. I absolutely love this quote and I keep it as a daily mantra to remind myself that I am truly in control of how I choose to react to the events that are happening in my life. In a fast-paced and ever-changing world, it is far too easy and very common to get into our own heads. With that, we can often get fixated in ruminating and extremely repetitive thoughts. The most challenging part about it is that it’s difficult to even notice, as our thought patterns and ways of thinking become so ingrained into our psyche, we can often fail to notice that it is actually happening. It becomes our automatic machinery, and we can inevitably be left feeling stuck, trapped, and at times helpless; however, we never truly are. We have the ability to be flexible and malleable in modifying our thought patterns, more so if we have the capacity to recognize what those are.
Hunter et al (2009) from Integrated Behavioral Health in Primary Care explain how to challenge several of these negative thinking patterns, and how to properly catch yourself in them:
1) All or nothing thinking-you can only see things in extreme opposites of the spectrum or in black and white, and there is no room for anything else or no happy medium. “I am either everything, or I am nothing.”
2) Jumping to conclusions-negative conclusions are made with little or no facts to back them up. “My loved one isn’t home yet, the only possible conclusion is that something bad must have happened to them.”
3) Fortune telling-you assume that things can, and will, certainly end badly. “Because I didn’t get a good grade on my exam, I will ultimately fail out of my program.”
4) Should statements-words like ‘I should ‘I must’ ‘I ought to’ can lead to extreme anxiety and dis-illusions of oneself and one’s values, abilities, and self-worth. “I am of a certain age, which means I should be married by now.”
5) Emotional Reasoning-the notion that because you feel a certain way, the assumptions you make about how you feel must be true. “Since I feel anxious, it must mean that there is something seriously wrong going on.”
There are many other disoriented thinking patterns discussed by Hunter et al (2009), however those are the most common ones that I have encountered in practice. Often, we are a subtle combination of many of them, even within a single day. This is why I love sending home Automatic Negative Thought records (or ANTs), as it gives people a chance to see these thought patterns head on, and it really gives an idea of how their thoughts effect their reality.
Having an aptitude to examine upsetting thought patterns is extremely helpful. It gives an individual the chance to really see those patterns for what they are, as well as to really challenge them. Seeing a thought pattern in front of you, and examining evidence for, as well as evidence against it, really helps rationalize something that is usually at a deeper level, very irrational.
It is very common to see stress, and anxiety manifest into physical illness, and I have seen this time and time again. Stress causes inflammation in the body and can cause serious digestive, joint, and even perpetuate autoimmune disorders (Gabor Mate 2003, When The Body Says No). It is truly fascinating to see what stress reduction and increasing positive mental-emotional coping mechanisms can do, not only for better mental health, but physical health and fitness as well.
I also find it very important to examine physical and organic causes which can perpetuate depression, stress and anxiety, and working to heal those triggers at the same time. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), adrenal fatigue, sleep deprivation, poor diet, cortisol or hormonal imbalances, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies, (often vitamin D3, or B12), as well as ferritin, and iron deficiencies, can all help with identifying any pre-existing states that need to be examined in order to make sure a sincerely holistic and all-encompassing approach is taken.
Adrenal injections, high dose B-complex injections, as well as traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture, homeopathy, botanicals, supplements and diet, all work together to ensure an individual’s ability and resilience to stress is at its truly optimal state.
Hunter et al (2009), Integrated Behavioral Health in Primary Care.
Gabor Mate (2003), When The Body Says No.
By Amanda Delamer, MSc, ACC, CPCC
My family and I just got back from an amazing trip to Argentina. It was so restful and rejuvenating, and I didn’t come back feeling like I needed a vacation following my vacation. Yesterday, I was reflecting on our time away and the joy I experienced, and then remembered that I had experienced some anxiety and panic leading up to our trip.
I don’t know about you, but every time before we go on vacation somewhere hot (i.e., where wearing a bathing suit is involved) a lovely little voice likes to pop into my head and say…”okay, you’ve got X amount of days/weeks to lose X amount of pounds. When you lose some weight you will be ready to have an amazing time on vacation. When you drop 10 pounds you will be happy.”
This voice is certainly not coming from my inner leader, but instead a sneaky saboteur trying to convince me that I will be happier “when”. A few days before our trip to Argentina (where we have family and friends who I will see again) the lovely voice was back letting me know that “you’ll be okay this trip, but think about next time when you have lost some of your baby weight.” Yep, the voice is good, it’s so positive and optimistic, NOT!
With so many years of experience with this lovely little voice…I witness myself moving quite quickly from “when” to “and”. I love my life, I love me as I am, in this moment AND I will continue to live a healthy lifestyle. If that results in dropping a few pounds, great, but the joy I experience in my life and my love for myself, in this moment, is not dependent on it.
So what’s your “when”? When I…lose 10 pounds, get that promotion, have children, finish this big project at work, move into a larger home…Whatever it is, what would it be like to feel joy now, in this moment AND commit to goals that are important to you? You might even find that finishing a project or dropping 10 pounds – that goal that has the “I will be happy when…” attached to it – is really not what is most important, you just have it on your “to do” list because you’re supposed to or you think you should.
What if you experienced joy in your life, loved your life and loved who you are, as you are today, in this moment?
I’m not saying drop your goals, go after them if they are important to you. I’m just throwing out there that experiencing joy and fulfillment is something that is available to you in this moment, if you are willing to let it in. And you can have goals and create change in your life.
Amanda Delamer is a self-awareness and fulfillment coach. Amanda coaches and supports people in living healthy, balanced and fulfilled lives. She coaches and honours the whole person – mind, body and spirit. Her clients experience fulfillment in all parts of their lives – health, family, relationships, career, and beyond – and they value and appreciate that all parts of their lives are connected, and that we all have responsibility in and for the world around us. She lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with her husband and three children.
Book in for your complimentary coaching session with Amanda Delamer. Call 403-452-6262. NEW CLIENT PROMOTION – 4 months of Coaching for the price of 3! Create space for joy, fulfillment and self-awareness!