Natural Family Medicine | 360-882-1339 | 16701 SE McGillivray Blvd, Suite 265, Vancouver, WA 98683 |

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Archive Year: 2017

We’ll Be Closing for Christmas

December 21st, 2017

We just want to make sure that everyone knows that we will be closed from 12/23/17 through 01/01/18. Please stock up on any refill supplements you may need before 12:30 on Friday 12/22/17. We wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy, Healthy 2018!!!

Bucking the Fast Food Marketing

December 18th, 2017

Bucking the Fast Food Marketing


Making fresh, homecooked meals every night is a rarity for millions of people that are busy with work and family life. Today, convenience foods and fast food restaurants have become the go-to for many busy families around the country. Convenience food products such as frozen pizzas, prepared mixes, canned soups, and other microwaveable foods means that individuals and families are lacking quality, wholesome nutrition. Processed food items like these usually have very little fiber, high saturated fat and sodium content, and lack the nutrients that fresh foods have. There has been controversy for many decades over microwaving food and the dangers of zapping nutritional content.

Yet, advertising and commercials make these processed foods appealing because they’re fast and easy to prepare, but in fact, they’re doing real damage to your health and can be a hazard to healthy living. Don’t fall victim to fast food marketing tactics. A whole food diet can be quick and even more economical. Here are some mistakes to avoid and tips on how to change what you eat so you can live a healthier lifestyle.

#1: Plan.
Set aside time to plan your menu for the week and if you’re short on time, get your shopping done in one trip at the beginning of the week to cut down time spent on stopping at the grocery store multiple times.  Planning can not only save you money, but it will also help you prepare on what meals you need to cook ahead of time and which ones you’ll need to set aside time to prepare when you get home at night. Planning ahead will help you start integrating, fresh, homecooked meals into your diet rather than relying on convenience food day in and day out.

#2: Make your diet a “whole” one.
If you live a busy, active lifestyle, you can still eat well while on the go. Just prepare fresh meals ahead of time and then freeze them until you’re ready to eat it, then add some fresh organic fruit and vegetables as your side dish. Your diet should include a variety of raw, fresh fruits and vegetables, so if you’re hungry during the day for a snack, instead of giving into your craving for a greasy bag of chips, have a variety of fresh items on hand or items that have low saturated fat and no processed sugar to eat instead. Or, invest in a blender or juicer, as this can allow you to drink your fruits and veggies and make it a flavorful treat during the day! It is very important to make each meal as well-balanced as possible.

If you’re tired of feeling lethargic or even “empty” after eating processed, packaged foods, it’s time to make a change. Do your homework when it comes to the importance of what you’re putting in your body. If you’re struggling with how to make a positive change in how you eat and you need help on how to adjust your diet and lifestyle, I can help provide some helpful tips and some of my favorite go-to healthy foods. Your health as well as the health of your family is incredibly important and making a shift away from convenience foods to fresh, wholesome products will be life-giving in the end.

Turmeric Seltzer!

December 8th, 2017

This recipe looks like an intriguing way to get turmeric in your diet–just leave out the gin!! 😉

Cannabinoids in Salmon??

December 8th, 2017

Most of us are aware of the benefits of healthy essential fatty acids (EPA and DHA, in particular) and that wild salmon is a wonderful source of them. Essential fatty acids are anti-inflammatory as well as support healthy cell membranes improving their function overall. But there is now evidence that our bodies are able to convert these omega fatty acids into endocannabinoids without the psychotropic effects! Check out this article.

Adding Weights to Lose Weight

December 8th, 2017

Research is revealing that keeping trim as we age may respond better to adding “weights” to our exercise regimes than even to cutting calories. Check out this article!

The Dangers of Fragrances and Chemicals

November 28th, 2017

The Dangers Of Fragrances and Chemicals

Whether it’s everyday cleaning supplies, air fresheners, laundry detergents, or expensive perfumes and lotions, artificial fragrance and the chemicals that go into some of these products can be very damaging to not only our environment, but our health as well. Even products that are labeled “unscented” can be full of chemicals that are not healthy. Toxins in synthetic scents have been known to cause cancer, birth defects, nervous system disorders, hormonal imbalances, allergic reactions, and more.

A 2008 study that was published in Environmental Impact Assessment Review looked at the gasses that were released off six well-known consumer products, including dryer sheets, laundry detergent, and air fresheners. Researchers found that there were 98 volatile organic compounds found in these things, which made the indoor air more toxic than outdoor air. Some of these chemicals had even been classified as hazardous air pollutants or carcinogens by the EPA. (1)

Unfortunately, we’re surrounded by fragrances everywhere we go. So, how do you limit your exposure to the toxic chemicals and fragrances that permeate our environment? Here are some tips and suggestions that can help.

Tip #1: Reduce your exposure to synthetic fragrance.
Products that are labeled “unscented” are not always fragrance-free, so when you’re shopping, look for products that have no added fragrance in them. Avoid using air fresheners and if you want to reduce odors around your home, open your windows for some fresh air. Or, consider cooking up some herbs or spices on the stove with cinnamon spice, fresh pine needles, or cut-up fruit in some water that can simmer and add a nice scent to your space.

Tip #2: Create your own cleaning products.
Making your own cleaning products is not only safer for your health and the environment, but it can often be less expensive. There are hundreds, maybe even thousands of recipes online for homemade cleaning products that are effective and use non-toxic ingredients.

Tip #3: Eliminate personal care products with a lot of chemicals in them.
Personal care products are often packed with harmful chemicals. Read the labels of your personal care items closely and get rid of the ones that have sodium laureth sulfate and parabens in them. Do some research about what other safe products are out there that you can use on your skin or hair, throw out the old stuff, and commit to using the new non-toxic products regularly.

Tip #4: Don’t track in chemicals.
Did you know that your shoes can bring in chemicals to your home, too? Use a door mat to catch dirt and chemicals, then when you get inside, take your shoes off to avoid tracking stuff around the home that you don’t want to contaminate the area with. Mop your floors and vacuum regularly to increase indoor air quality and keep your home free as possible of toxic chemicals.

A healthy future begins with small steps like this and over time, they can lead to positive, lasting change in your life and the lives of your family members that live in your home. For more information on healthy personal care and cleaning items, visit the EWG site here.

  1. “Toxic fragrance in the air.” EWG News and Analysis. August 22, 2008. Accessed online November 21, 2017.

Holiday Meal Bloat–These May Help!

November 27th, 2017

We hope that you enjoyed your Thanksgiving celebration with family, friends, and good food! With the holidays upon us, celebrating around the table can lead to over-eating and/or eating trigger foods that cause bloating. Remember portion sizes–choosing a smaller dinner plate (ie, the salad plate!) can help you get a better perspective on your serving sizes. Digestive enzymes can also help. And I’m intrigued by these exercises, too!  Check them out 🙂

Medical Insurance Changes

November 6th, 2017

Medical Insurance Benefit Changes for 2018: Naturopathic physicians are being excluded as PCP’s in individual plans. The open enrollment period for 2018 medical insurance benefits began on November 1, 2017. Unfortunately, it appears that medical benefits in the individual market beginning in January will have limited access to naturopathic care. The reason for this limitation is that all benefit plans being offered in the individual market in most Washington counties are either HMO or ACO-based plans (check your area). Such plans require the patient to name a primary care provider (PCP) to coordinate all of their care–and NONE of these companies recognize NDs and PCPs. This means that the patient may no longer have coverage for naturopathic services, although they may be able to see an ND as a specialist and pay a higher co-pay. Also, as a specialist, an ND will not be able to provide annual exams or routine check ups, order labs or make referrals unless the patient chooses to pay cash to do so.
What can you do? Contact the OIC and register a complaint about limited access to naturopathic primary care at .

Statins May Increase Coronary Plaque Formation

September 8th, 2017

This is an interesting article reporting that statin medications may actually INCREASE arterial plaque formation instead of reducing it. The study uses Coronary Artery Calcium Scores (CACS) which have a good correlation with calcified plaque levels in the arteries of the heart. I will say that Dr. Brownstein’s references are not included in the paper so further digging may be required. I do utilize CACS–OHSU offers it very economically at the time of this writing. If you have elevated cholesterol and/or a family history of coronary artery disease or strokes, please schedule and appointment to see if this assessment may be right for you!

Curcumin May Support Healthy Bone Density

August 21st, 2017

We all are aware of the benefits of adequate calcium, magnesium, Vit. D, and Vit. K for healthy bones. But did you know that curcumin also seems to support healthy bone density. Check out this article. And check with your health care provider to see if supplementing curcumin is right for you.

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