Saturday, December 31, 2022


                  Blog 130 Start 2023 with a Healthy Microbiome


Flourishing, stable and wholesome gastrointestinal flora help insure the health of all the body’s systems, including musculoskeletal, circulatory, neurological, digestive, reproductive, detoxification, immune system and more.   Some people take supplemental probiotics to support their intestinal flora, and some consume cultured or fermented foods that are rich sources of healthy bacteria.  Both these are good approaches to achieving better gastrointestinal and overall health.  Even better, and longer lasting approaches are lifestyles that support sound digestion and homeostasis.  


Certain lifestyle choices and foods will stress the mind and body and make the digestive system less hospitable to healthy bacteria.  Smoking tobacco, significant prescription medication or recreational drug use, moderate to heavy alcohol consumption, insufficient sleep, involvement in highly stressful relationships or work situations, a sedentary lifestyle, excessive screen time, breathing polluted air, drinking contaminated water, and eating processed and other unhealthy foods all will not support a healthy microbiome.  Instead, other opportunistic microorganisms that usually are present in small amounts and are kept under control by a healthy immune system and beneficial microbiome, may proliferate and eventually cause problems.  Mild health problems may include excessive gas, gastric reflux, sleep disturbance, and irritable bowel syndrome.  More severe problems may include migraine headaches, depression, food allergies, autoimmune problems, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis, and various opportunistic infections, some of which, like Salmonella and Clostridium difficile can be serious or even life-threatening.  


A diet full of fresh, preferably organically grown fruit and vegetables, with organic seeds and nuts, wild caught fish, and grass-fed meats (if you are an omnivore rather than vegetarian or vegan) will help support a healthy microbiome even without probiotic supplements or cultured and fermented foods.  Vegetarian and vegan diets also can support a healthy microbiome.  A healthy diet supplies prebiotic nutrition upon which beneficial intestinal flora can thrive.  If you decide to use a probioticsupplement, I suggest you choose one that is kept in the refrigerated section of the store.  Some of these supplements have many types of bacteria, but look for supplements that contain at least these three: Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, and Lactobacillus bulgaricus.  


My personal three favorite fermented foods are yogurt, sauerkraut and miso, so I will cover these three.

Yogurt and Kefir can be good sources of healthy probiotics.  Full fat and organically produced milk is preferable, and milk from grass-fed animals is best.  It is important that there are no sweeteners or foods other than dairy and culture present in store bought yogurt or kefir.  Fresh fruit and sweeteners, such as maple syrup or raw honey can be added just before eating.  You also can make yogurt at home with a special yogurt kit or even just high quality milk, a culture, and a warming element.  You can cut and paste the link below in your browser for instructions regarding homemade yogurt.


The EASY Way to Make Homemade Yogurt (with fewer dishes!)


Sauerkraut and Kimchi are also relatively easy to make at home, and are less expensive than store-bought versions.  They are, in my opinion, the most wholesome of all the fermented foods, and consist of just vegetables, usually at least cabbage, plus salt.  Sometimes a culture is added.  Kimchi recipes also include one or more spicy ingredients, such as garlic, ginger, radish and hot red pepper.  If you purchase these products at a store, make sure that they are in the refrigerated section and are preferably organic and stored in glass containers.  Below is a link with instructions for making homemade fermented vegetables (sauerkraut).




Another excellent fermented food is miso, traditionally a Japanese soy, salt and koji (fermented grain) dish, which also sometimes contains alternate beans or grains.  Because so many soybeans are GMO products, it is important to select only organically grown soybeans and other ingredients to make miso.  Normally, the process takes several months to years, but the excellent article below presents several options, including a way to make miso in several days.  Miso is high in protein and in plenty of other nutrients, including friendly bacteria.  For those who cannot consume much salt, this particular fermented food may not be for you.  To learn more about making miso, from the perspective of a top British chef, just cut and paste the first link below into your browser to read an excellent article with clear instructions.  If the miso making process seems overwhelming, remember that there are several good quality brands of organic miso that you can purchase at the store.  My favorite brand, which is hard to find, and usually must be purchased directly from the family who makes it traditionally, is South River brand.  If you are interested in South River brand miso, the best miso I have ever tasted, you can learn about the company through the link below, which supplies lots of information, including three videos.  

How to make miso

There are several other fermented foods which could be covered, such as apple cider vinegar, natto – fermented soybeans – and Kumbucha tea, but I will let you research those by yourself.  

This blog’s offer:  print out this blog and bring it in with you for your January or February 2023 appointment and request a free sample taste of South River brand miso.  Wishing you a happy, healthy, prosperous 2023.

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

             Blog #129 Yoga Music Thai Bodywork Reiki and Karen Lum


During Thanksgiving time, I want to  share with you a gifted woman, who has helped people, including myself, enjoy healing, support, and light-heartedness during this pandemic time.  She is my neighbor, fortunately for me, and stepping inside her home or treatment space you will find lush plants, glowing crystals and other stones, Tibetan singing bowls, soft music, fragrant incense and more.  I wholeheartedly recommend you contact her for an inspiring, relaxing healing session.  Below are two websites where you can learn more about Karen and contact her:   


Additionally, Karen teaches Yoga classes, both in person and via Zoom.  I can vouch for her healthy and positive lifestyle as well as her positive spirit and attitude.  Consider taking classes or purchasing a healing session with her for yourself or someone else.  Karen also practices Tai Chi, including various forms, such as Tai Chi Sword techniques.  


Over a year ago, I wrote about Karen in one of my blogs – Blog #115, entitled Music Heals.  I am also including that blog below.


                                       Blog #115 Music Heals


In addition to regular exercise, nutritious food, sufficient sleep, a calm mind, a happy or content attitude, musculoskeletal stability, medicinal herbs, pure water, clean air, positive relationships, meaning and purpose in life, and closeness to the natural world, there are many other elements that can support and improve health.  


Those of you who are musicians or simply music lovers have likely have felt your spine tingle at times while you listened to music that particularly moved you.  On these occasions, the body attunes to powerful musical vibrations and channels that energy up the spine.  That energy can also travel to other areas of the body.  Various keys of music correspond to and stimulate or calm specific endocrine glands.  The note G, or music played in the key of G, for example, resonates with the thyroid gland. If you click on the lines below, you can hear Mozart’s “A Little Night Music, composed in G major.  Mozart: Eine kleine Nachtmusik - Concertgebouw Kamerorkest - Live C

Another excellent example of music in various keys resonating with specific areas and endocrine glands in the body is an eight part composition by Kay Gardiner, “A Rainbow Path”.  She coordinates color along with key in this unique composition. 


Some people use sound and music as a principle of healing for themselves and others.  Some examples are gong journeys and baths, crystal and Tibetan singing bowls, and singing and toning.  A person’s intent can send sound energy into or out of the body, as well as direct it to or from areas of weakness or excess.  Sometimes, sound can affect a person’s energy in an undesirable way.  That occurred recently, when I was apparently placed in a state of imbalance by someone who heals with gongs and other instruments.  The morning after that gong session, my blood pressure plummeted, I became extremely fatigued and my appetite was completely gone.  About a week later, still fatigued, my left leg became weak and could barely support me.  I walked with pain and difficulty, had to push up with my hands to stand from a chair or bed, and considered relying on a cane until I could address the problem successfully.  Neither acupuncture nor massage helped.  


Fortunately, I have a neighbor who heals with sound.  I had a session with her, thinking that sound healing might be especially appropriate, given the circumstances under which I was injured.  The first hour with my neighbor was pleasant and I did not notice much difference.  The second session, about a week later, was very different.  Toward the end of the hour, she directed sound from one of her singing bowls down my left leg.  I felt strong tingling energy move from my knee to my foot.  My leg felt stronger when I stood up, and by the end of the day, the pain and instability were gone.  Now, about two months later, my left knee and leg feel better than they have in at least a year, and probably much longer.  I can once again stand up from a chair without pushing with my hands, can climb and descend stairs without using a railing, and can walk quickly without discomfort.  My left knee and leg are not perfect, since I suffered a serious injury many years ago, which eventually necessitated surgery.  However, the results from my neighbor’s music healing session have been so strong that I want to share that experience, as well as provide information about her.  She also does Thai bodywork, Reiki healing and teaches yoga.  


This month’s offer:  contact me if you want further information about my neighbor and how to reach her if you might want a session.  Also, if you ask, I am willing to share with you more information about how and why the session with the first healer likely harmed me.  Happy Holidays to you.







Monday, October 24, 2022

                                          Blog #128 Chiropractic Supports Your Health

                 Blog #128 Chiropractic Supports Your health


Since October is Chiropractic Month, I thought it would be appropriate to address chiropractic adjusting. Chiropractic adjusting can benefit you in many ways.  When gentle, or combined with at least a little massage, chiropractic adjustments help improve blood circulation locally and elsewhere in the body.  When spinal vertebrae and other joint articulations are mobilized appropriately, the resulting improved blood circulation brings more red blood cells to better oxygenate the area and more white blood cells to attend to the body’s defense.  With proper adjusting and improved circulation, muscles and also internal organs function more comfortably and effectively.  Since lymphatic circulation is also improved by chiropractic adjusting, local debris, such as the waste products of cellular metabolism, is more efficiently carried away from the area and brought to organs such as the spleen, kidneys, lungs and large intestine for elimination from the body.  Additionally, chiropractic adjustments help the nervous system function optimally.  When vertebrae or other joint articulations are subluxated (misaligned) due to injury, poor posture, muscle spasm, or other causes, the local nerves can sometimes be impinged upon and irritated. This impingement and/or irritation can compromise nerve function and result in muscle discomfort or weakness and even sometimes in diminished organ function.  Cranial adjustments, that is, adjustments of the skull, can improve sinus function, reduce headache severity and frequency, and greatly alleviate TMJ (jaw) problems.  And there’s more:  gentle chiropractic adjusting helps your body and mind relax.  All of the above benefits add up to a healthier immune system, with less colds and other ailments, especially if chiropractic treatment is received regularly.  And, of course, since chiropractic adjusting alleviates pain and accelerates the healing of injuries, it helps people function better and enjoy life more.


I first learned about chiropractic when I was in my mid-teens, after my mother injured her low back during a Grand Canyon mule tour.  The resulting pain forced her to resign from her secretarial job.  Neither orthopedic physicians nor physical therapists could help her.  After almost a year of suffering, a woman from her previous job told her about a man who had fixed her painful neck, which had been in spasm and turned toward one shoulder, in only a few visits. This woman had consulted M.D.’s and physical therapists to no avail for several months.  Dr. Klingenna, the chiropractor, worked out of the basement of his home.  The first time he saw my mother, he did a little massage on her back and tractioned her low back by pulling on her ankles.  The second visit, he repeated this procedure, but for a longer time, and added ultrasound therapy.  At the third appointment, he once again had my mother lay on his table and this time he followed the above procedures with chiropractic spinal adjustments.  After that treatment, she remained pain free for over two years.  Since her job had hired temporary employees to fill her spot, she was able to reclaim her position.  From then on, every two to three years my mother developed low back pain and returned to Dr. Klingenna for several treatments.  After I graduated from chiropractic school, I adjusted my mother at those times.

This month’s offer:  call me to set up an appointment for a chiropractic adjustment to reduce discomfort and improve your health.  Seasonal transitions, that is, the times around the equinoxes and solstices, are excellent opportunities for treatment.




Thursday, September 29, 2022

                      Blog 127 Diagnostic Devices to Have at Home


In these times when we are uncertain about health and may feel stressed and confused, it can be helpful to have regular information about some basic health indicators.  In a previous blog, I already have covered blood oxygen level.  This was in Blog # 122.  You can review that blog by going to my website, EWagnerHolisticHealth.Org, clicking the tab that says “blog” and locating Blog # 122 by scrolling down.  Or you may have saved that blog from emails you received several months ago.  

Two other fairly inexpensive diagnostic pieces of equipment, besides the blood oxygen monitor, that would be beneficial to have at home are a thermometer and a blood pressure monitor.  It is valuable to know the temperature of your body.  Normal temperature ranges from 97.0 F (36.1C) and about 99.0 F (37.2C).  A lower body temperature, hypothermia, may be due to several causes, including being outside in very cold weather, hypothyroidism or other endocrine imbalances, neurological illness, such as stroke and Parkinson’s disease, infection in the elderly or very depleted, and some prescription medications, such as anti-psychotic drugs and drugs that protect the heart in cases of serious cardiac compromise.  An elevated body temperature can be due to inflammation due to conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, bacterial or viral infection, sun or heat stroke, some cancerous tumors, certain prescription drugs, such as antibiotics and those used to treat high blood pressure, some shots, such the DPT pneumococcal inoculations.  Some of these factors can be addressed fairly quickly and some may be very complex and require much medical expertise to diagnose and, hopefully, alleviate.  If you are looking for a new thermometer, the link below may be helpful.  You may need to cut and paste the links to your browser.

9 Best Thermometers For Kids & Adults Of 2022 - Forbes Health


Blood pressure readings can give valuable information about physical health and mental state.  They can also give input about which herbs, foods, activities, stresses and lifestyles are beneficial and which may be harmful.  For example, licorice root may sometimes elevate blood pressure, as may lack of sleep, rage, restricted breathing, or inhaling toxic substances, such as paint or pesticide.  The two values in a blood pressure reading are systolic and diastolic pressures.  Systolic indicates pressure exerted against the arterial wall when the heart is contracting, and diastolic indicates the pressure of blood against the arterial walls while the heart rests between contractions.  Normal blood pressure for an adult ranges from about 90/60 to 130/80, with values close to the center of the range usually being preferable.  Until about a decade ago, pressure in the range up to 140/90 was considered normal, though that reading was considered to be high normal, and therefore borderline hypertension.  Keeping blood pressure in the normal range is likely to result in prolonging kidney, heart, brain and vascular health, and improving overall well-being.  Generally, it is recommended that blood pressure be taken on three separate occasions, and if it is elevated each time, then it is advisable to work on lowering the pressure through life-style changes and possibly with herbs from a holistic doctor or with a medical prescription from your allopathic physician.  I would recommend purchasing a monitor, if you can afford one, and checking your blood pressure daily.  You may find that you can recognize how you feel when your pressure is low or elevated and you also may learn about what foods, situations, states of mind, and lifestyle choices you need to avoid or adopt.  Below is a link that may help you select a good blood pressure monitor.  Wrist monitors are also an option, and I personally prefer these.


Finally, below is a link to an excellent discussion of these three types of health readings.  The speaker, Dr. John Campbell, is an excellent, open-minded man with a daily presence on YouTube.  

Every home diagno stic devices - YouTube


This blog’s offer:  feel free to contact me with questions about these three types of equipment and  the indicators you can obtain from them.



Sunday, August 28, 2022

                                    Blog #126  Healthful Sleep


Years ago, I learned about a sleep position developed in China centuries ago.  One of my teachers showed his class this, and over the years my respect has increased for this sleep position and for the people who developed it.  This position, which I will refer to as OQS (Optimal Qi Flow) is simple, yet detailed and its explanation can range from superficial to profound.  I will aim for the middle ground.  If you are unable to sleep on your right side due to an injury or other health issue, then OQF is not for you.  Most people will be able to sleep this way, and over time, they will get used to it and even come to regard it as an excellent way to obtain restful sleep.  


The sleeper lies on the right side, with or without a pillow under the head.  If they have a pillow, it should be small and fairly flat.  The right hand cups the right ear, thumb behind the ear and the rest of the fingers in front.  The open palm gently supports the head.  This position takes some weight off the right shoulder.  The bottom leg is fairly straight, but the knee is slightly bent.  The left leg, which is placed on top of the right, is bent considerably more.  If possible, the left foot is tucked into the bend of the right knee.  The left arm rests on the torso, with two possible positions for the hand.  Either the open palm is placed just below the navel – that is, between the navel and the pelvic area – or a very loose fist rests on the outer left thigh.  Ideally, breathing is through the nose.  The mind can welcome positive, protective thoughts and inspiration, or it can be empty, whatever is most natural and restful for the sleeper.  If the person shifts position, that is fine, but because of the beneficial aspects of OQF, they may grow to naturally maintain this position for much or all of the night.  


Many Acupuncture meridians run along and through the body.  OQF works with two of these channels – the Gall Bladder channel (a Yang channel) and the Conception Vessel (CV) extraordinary channel (Yin channel).  The extremely Yang Gall Bladder (GB) channel runs on the right and left sides of the body (it is bilateral) and circles the ear, runs along side of the head and parts of the face, runs to the upper trapezius (uppermost back), moves down the side of the body, travels slightly to the front of the body, including some middle and lower areas on the ribcage, then on to the anterior pelvic bone, that is, the iliac bone.  Then the GB channel continues downward, to the hip and gluteal area, the lateral thigh, down the lateral leg to the ankle and foot, ending at the lateral aspect of the fourth toe, at the toenail.  Gall Bladder (Yang) and Liver (Yin) channels are paired, with each performing many functions, including the GB’s receiving and removing stress (and bile) away from the liver (LV).  An over-active, fatty or toxic liver is notorious for interfering with sleep.  Among the LV’s many functions are helping feel and release the emotions and their related hormones and other chemicals, especially from the emotions of anger and frustration.  Keeping energy (Qi) flow smooth and regular helps relieve digestive, musculoskeletal and emotional stress and induces physical relaxation.  This is especially true for GB Qi flow.  The CV channel can help move Yang Qi down from the top of the head, where energy is most Yang and active and stress-inducing into the lower body, which is more Yin.  It also can help move Yin energy from the lower body into the upper body, especially the head, the most Yang area, and this action is not always helpful.  The Conception Vessel begins in the perineum and travels upward, past the pelvic area and stays in the body’s midline.  It ends just below the lower lip.  There is only one CV, located on the body’s frontal midline.  The CV is paired with the Governing Vessel (GV), which starts at the tip of the tailbone (coccyx), runs up the spine, traverses the scalp, and ends at the gum just below the upper lip.  This channel is very Yang.  A healthy Qi flow through these two channels helps contribute to fertility, calmness, vitality and overall good health.  One of the possible OQF left hand positions is located on the CV, just below the navel.  The other option is on the lateral thigh, where the GB meridian travels.  The front of the body, including the palms is Yin and the back of the body, including the back of the hands is Yang in nature.


Now for a little more explanation.  Cupping the hand around the ear helps stabilize Qi flow in the head, thus minimizing stuck Qi and consequently also reducing the likelihood of headaches, insomnia and nightmares.  An added benefit is less crow’s feet.  Lying on the right side versus the left helps take pressure off the heart, stomach and pancreas, allowing them to function more optimally.  The liver is the largest and most vascular internal organ in the body, containing the most blood; therefore it is warmer than the rest of the body.  Lying on the left side positions the liver on top, where it presses on and warms/inflames the smaller stomach, pancreas and heart, all located to the left of the liver.  While using OQS, positioning the palm of the left hand below the umbilicus will tend to be more centering, calming and soothing, connecting Yin to Yin (front of the body).  When the hand held in a loose fist is placed on the lateral thigh, where the GB channel runs, this will tend to disperse tension in the digestive system, musculoskeletal system, and even the emotions.  When the hand is in a loose fist, the Yang aspect (back) of the hand connects to the extremely Yang Gall Bladder channel.  Regarding the legs – when the left foot is tucked behind the right knee, this helps stimulate Qi flow in the right leg, and especially helps prevent congestion of energy and blood at the right knee, which is lower and therefore more likely to experience pressure congestion than are the left leg and knee.  Sleeping with the left knee bent reduces tension in the left leg, as well as in the pelvis and spine.  Much more could be written about this sleep position, but I hope this small amount of information helps you begin to understand how complex the body’s energy system is and how much we can influence our quality of sleep in this way.  


People with heart problems, such as pericarditis and congestive heart failure, and people with gastric ulcers, gastric reflux, pancreatitis and diabetes often benefit from this sleeping position.  Of course, this is not recommended for people with injuries to the right shoulder and hip, and sometimes injuries to the right knee.  I suggest you try OQS and draw your own conclusions.  I noticed a difference after the first night.  My chest felt cooler and my sleep was sounder.  I often, but not always, choose to sleep this way.


This blog’s offer:  feel free to call me free of charge with questions about this OQS sleep position, Yin and Yang, and other related topics.  I also often help people with sleep problems, and there will be a charge for help in these cases, which may require several treatments, dietary guidance, or other suggestions and therapies.  


Sunday, July 31, 2022

                             Blog# 125: Improving Physical Health Strengthens the Mind

This is especially true for children, since they have not yet developed fully intellectually, though they may be quite intuitive.  People need exercise, preferably in fresh air, they need nutritious food and clean water.  They also need to learn good posture so that their internal organs function optimally.  Time spent outdoors, especially among trees, is beneficial in relieving stress and oxygenating the body.

Avoiding as many toxic substances, such as petrochemical based cleaning agents, pesticides, such as round-up, and manufactured furniture substances, such as smart foam mattresses, particle board furniture, and plastic shower curtains and food and drink containers is important.  Toxins burden the internal organs, blood, and even the cells, since the body must neutralize and/or expel the toxic materials.  

Optimal sleep, preferably between 11 pm and 7 am, full, relaxed breathing, primarily from the abdomen, and sufficient hydration are all important in supporting physical and therefore also emotional and mental health.  Prolonged exposure to EMF’s (electromagnetic fields) can lead to minor or severe illnesses, depending on the sources – smartphones, x-rays, sunlight and fluorescent lighting are some examples.  Additionally, excessive use of medications, including anti-inflammatories, anti-biotics, statins, and some vaccines can harm physical and also mental and emotional health.  

Since hot and warm summer weather are the conditions from which we can derive maximal energy, it is important to take advantage of this situation by spending time outside, in the sun.  Also, it is vital to conserve our energy, even in the face of such wealth.  Saving energy results in reserves to help off-set illness, accidents, stress, rough weather and ageing in the future.  People often tend to expend their energy when it becomes high.  Learning to relax while in a state of high energy and to use that energy to repair the body and support the mind’s expansion, are important, in my opinion, for increased longevity and creativity, to say nothing of holding our own with AI.  (Just kidding about that last part, about AI, but it still might be true…..)

So, have an enjoyable summer, while preparing and protecting ourselves for the autumn, winter, and beyond.

This blog’s offer – feel free to email me or call me with questions about this topic.

Thursday, June 30, 2022

               Blog 124  Detoxification Fasting for Summer


Over the pandemic’s past two plus years, and, in fact, over our entire lifetimes, numerous toxic materials have accumulated in our bodies.  These have many sources, including polluted air, water contaminated with lead, copper, fluoride and other additives, mercury and microplastics in fish, pesticides on our food and air, factories emitting harmful chemicals, electromagnetic radiation from xrays, cell phones, computers, and EMF power lines, toxins and inflammatories from prescription and non-prescription drugs, vaccines, alcohol, tobacco, toxic cleaning products, plastic to-go containers, and the list can probably go on for pages.  In small amounts, these substances usually don’t cause major problems for most adults, but young children and infants are more vulnerable.  Increasingly, we are bombarded with more of these materials, many of which accumulate in the body and sometimes cause discomfort, suboptimal mental and physical functioning, depression, anxiety, infertility and even autoimmune diseases and cancer.  


This month’s blog covers a gentle 11 day detoxification/fast, as well as information about several foods that may help in detoxification.   For instance, leafy greens, are excellent detoxifiers.  Cilantro and arugula are two of the best dark leafy greens for this purpose.  Certain root vegetables, such as carrots and beets, can be excellent detoxifiers.  For those people who have trouble digesting vegetables, organic vegetable juices may be easier to consume.  Otherwise, some organic fruit, such as lemons, some grapes, especially concord, apples, some melons, especially watermelon, and high quality algae can be helpful.  If a person has issues with blood sugar (hypo- or hyper glycemia) sweet fruit such as bananas, mangos and melons may not be the best choices for detoxification.  And most algae are full of toxins, since they pull nutrients, including heavy metals, from the waters in which they live.  Algae, therefore, should only be consumed when harvested from pristine waters.  Additionally, since juicing concentrates both nutrients and toxins from foods, it is important to juice only organic or biodynamic fruits and vegetables.  


During this detox, water should be filtered or distilled.  Avoid water bottled in plastic.  Here is an outline of the eleven days:

Day one:  follow a pescatarian diet – that is, an organic vegetarian diet, plus fish.  The fish should be wild-caught, from the cleanest waters possible.  Teas and coffees are acceptable, but must be organically grown, and not served with sugar or milk/cream/half and half.  Artificial sweeteners must be avoided during this detox, as must processed foods.  

Day two:  follow an organic vegetarian diet – that is, a diet free of meat, poultry, fish, seafood and insects.  Dairy and eggs are acceptable.  Dairy should preferably be from goats or sheep.  Cultured dairy, such as yogurt, kefir and sour cream is best.   Eggs should be from birds allowed to forage outdoors.  Corn and soy as well as most other seeds and grains should be only a small portion of the diet.  Worms and insects, as well as grass, weeds, sea vegetables and other fruit and vegetables are far better.   Even lizards, fish, frogs and snakes are appropriate foods, since chicken, ducks, geese, turkeys and other birds are omnivorous in the wild.   This kind of wild diet will allow the bird to produce eggs high in omega-3 fats.  Of course, eggs also contain omega-6 fats, but omega-6’s should not predominate.  Both of these fatty acids are necessary to maintain health, but most modern diets contain much more omega 6’s, which tend to increase inflammation, than 3’s, which tend to decrease inflammation.  

Day three:  follow an organic vegan diet – that is, a diet high in fruit and vegetables, without any animal foods.  While legumes, seeds, nuts and grains are all healthful foods in moderation, avoid soy and peanuts, as well as all nut and seed butters during this detox.

Day four:  follow an organic, raw vegan diet today.  This is the same as day three, except all foods are uncooked, though they may be sun-dried or dehydrated.  No coffees or teas are to be consumed, except for sun tea.  Fresh foods are best.  Some examples are grapes, sweet bell peppers, watermelon, lemon, young coconut and young coconut water, banana, cabbage, sauerkraut, apples, apple cider vinegar, broccoli, chard, celery, kale, lettuce, spinach, arugula, cilantro, avocado, tomato and cucumber.  On this day, foods may be juiced, eaten whole, or even blended into a smoothie, using water or raw fruit juice or raw young coconut water as a liquid base.  Allow yourself only lemon or lime juice, apple cider vinegar, and high quality cold pressed flax seed oil on your salads during this detox/fast.  

Days five, six and seven:  follow an apple fast, consuming tart, raw apples, as well as purified water.  Juicing the apples would also sometimes be acceptable, but eating the whole fruit - seeds, peel and core is best.  If you feel that you just cannot handle all raw apples but want to continue with this program, consider baking some of the apples in the oven at a low temperature, about 200 - 250 degrees F for 30 to 60 minutes.  Drink as much water as you want, preferably a lot – six to eight cups a day or more – but don’t force yourself.  

Day eight is the same as day four.

Day nine is the same as day three.

Day ten is the same as day two.

Day eleven is the same as day one.  


If you are a vegetarian, then you would just make days one and two identical, as well as days ten and eleven.  If you are vegan, then just make days one, two and three identical, as well as days nine, ten and eleven.  


After completing this program, you will likely have more of a taste for whole, organic foods and will have improved your daily diet somewhat.  You also would probably have lost a few pounds and released some toxins from your body.  Most people will benefit from doing this program once a year.  I will begin this 11 day detox/fast in July.  


This blog’s offer:  feel free to contact me with any questions about this detox.  If you want closer daily supervision, then contact me about that also.  For closer supervision there will be a small fee.  Have a happy, healthy summer!







Saturday, May 28, 2022

   Blog 123 Five Ways to Make Your Low Back Comfortable


There are many reasons for low back pain, some of which are fairly well known, and others that are less common.  Here listed are some contributing factors to low back pain and some ideas about how you may successfully address these issues.  In this blog, I am going to use more medical terminology than usual.  For the sake of brevity, I will let you consult the internet or a dictionary for definitions and details if needed.  

l.  Spinal injuries, including spinal subluxations.  An injury to the spine could include a sprain or strain of muscles, ligaments or tendons which support or stabilize the vertebral joints.  For example, an automobile or biking accident or a fall indoors or outside can result in damage to the back.  Healing approaches include rest to allow the injured structures to heal, anti-inflammatory herbal remedies, such as Turmeric and Boswellia, that will not interfere with cell repair, and initial 10 to 20 minutes applications of cold packs or liniment spaced out several times day, but only in the first 48 hours.  After that, warming therapies such as hot compresses, warming liniment, and Acupuncture that improve circulation to the area are usually helpful.  Also important are activities such as walking and swimming, and often passive mobilization, including Chiropractic adjusting, Massage therapy, ultrasound or electrostimulation.   Stabilizing techniques such as Kinesiotape, and orthotics, which prevent ankle inversion or eversion, help prevent further injuries and allow faster and more complete healing.  Of course, it is important to check for fractures if the injury was severe or if you suspect a fracture, including a compression fracture.  Consult your Chiropractor or other Physician to obtain x-rays, MRI’s or other diagnostic images.  

2.  Poor standing, seated or sleeping posture, or unsupportive furniture.   Slouching, standing with knees locked or hyperextended, forward head posture, and consistently placing more weight on one leg rather than the other all can result in low back pain, as can problems stemming from flat feet or chronic ankle strains and sprains.  Wearing good quality shoes, corrective orthotics, staying more conscious of standing posture and pulling back or relaxing the shoulders, retracting the neck so it is not forward of the torso, keeping the weight more centered and not primarily on one leg or the other all can be helpful.  Especially helpful can be work with a Strong Posture specialist or a Feldenkrais practitioner, since this will teach and reinforce balanced and healthy posture while standing, moving and sitting.  Sometimes standing or even walking (treadmill) workstations can be of assistance when alternated with a seated work station.  Using an exercise ball as a chair may also be helpful.  And it may be time to change your mattress, box spring, or bed frame.  Be sure to test out the bed first, before buying it, especially if you have low back discomfort.  Disposing of old chairs or couches that force you to slouch, or placing a supportive lumbar pillow behind your spine can be effective, and might allow you to keep the old furniture.   

3.  Congenital and developmental anomalies, such as scoliosis (some complex spinal curvatures) and an extra lumbar vertebra or the fusion of two vertebrae or fusion of the bottom lumbar vertebra to the sacrum below it are some examples that can result in low back pain.  Also problematic can be spondylolisthesis, a condition when a vertebra slips forward on the vertebra below it.  This situation can be due to a spinal birth defect, a partial fracture in part of the vertebra, and it also occurs in athletes who often greatly hyperextend their spines – think of a gymnast who does many backflips.  Spinal instability, disc degeneration and eventually bulging, herniation and stenosis can occur due to these and other conditions.  Effective treatments include cutting down on exercises that stress the spine, rest after injury, daily exercises that strengthen the muscles supporting the spine (the paraspinal muscles), stabilization of the spine with Kinesio Tape, improving posture with the help of professionals, if necessary, including Chiropractors, Massage Therapists, and Acupuncturists. Acupuncture and Chiropractic adjusting in particular can improve blood circulation to and lymphatic drainage from the spinal area and reduce the likelihood or the rate of degenerative changes. 

4.  Infections, weakening or other malfunction of internal organs.  Every part of the body has the potential to effect the rest of the body.  For example, a hyper or hypo thyroid condition can result in poor sleep, fatigue, weakening of muscles and ligaments, hair loss, bone thinning, depression, and of course, joint pain, including back pain.   A sluggish, toxic colon, (constipation) can result in toxicity in the rest of the body, stress on liver and kidneys as they struggle to detoxify the body, fatigue, irritability, depression  and musculoskeletal aches and pains, including back pain.  Weak liver and/or kidneys can result in poor appetite, nausea, general muscular weakness, fatigue, anger, depression, and pain, including low back pain.  Hormonal imbalances, such as PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome) or menopause can result in fatigue, moodiness, brain fog, and back pain.  Osteoporosis can result in spinal compression fractures, which are extremely painful.  The unfortunate person who develops spinal cancer or another cancer which metastasizes to the spine can eventually develop severe low back pain.  And there are also many other diseases and imbalances that can result in low back discomfort.  A couple of these problems can often be addressed on your own, i.e. constipation and PMS, but most may require professional diagnostics and therapy of some sort.  Thyroid imbalances will often require some general detoxification, stress reduction, sufficient sleep, excellent nutrition, and often some thyroid supportive nutritional supplements and/or medication.  Chiropractic adjusting, Massage and Acupuncture can also help address thyroid dysfunction, as can regular Yoga practice, improved posture and regular, fairly gentle exercise.  It is important to monitor thyroid function with blood work and adjust medications and supplements accordingly, since either hyper or hypo-thyroid, as well as auto-immune thyroid conditions can result in excessive bone thinning and even spinal compression fractures.  

5.  Emotional and mental stress.  Even if a person is reasonably physically healthy, stress can result in insomnia, muscle tension, poor appetite, deteriorating posture, and eventually - you guessed it – low back pain.  All the internal organs can be adversely affected by prolonged stress.  Liver and pancreas, imbalances may result in blood sugar abnormalities; the heart and lungs issues, could result in conditions such as asthma and angina or even congestive heart failure, and problems of the kidneys and adrenal glands can lead to fatigue and sleep disturbance.  The adrenal glands secrete cortisol, which, in the short run, helps a person deal with stress by controlling inflammation and supporting a burst of energy.  Prolonged secretion results in adrenal exhaustion, which can lead to hypertension, inflammation, physical pain, increased tendency for accidents, brain fog, weight gain, and even suppressed immune function.  Some types of stress can be managed.  You may be able to leave a destructive relationship, choose to go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day, improve your nutrition, reduce or eliminate unhealthy habits, such as cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption.   You also may choose to engage in regular, non-stressful exercise, such as walking, gardening, Yoga, Tai Chi, light strength training and Pilates.  Pulling back from social media and reading inspirational books, listening to soothing, uplifting music, and spending time in Nature can also be helpful.  Sometimes a situation is not completely resolvable, such as unemployment or poor health due to a pandemic, injury from disease or shots and medications, exposure to environmental pollution, living in war-torn cities, facing food shortages and poverty.  Sometimes having a good friend with whom to talk will be helpful, as may seeing a therapist or counselor.  Sometimes a specific support group can help, such as AA (alcoholics anonymous) or even a church organization.  And if it is possible to volunteer to help others or the environment, that often can be helpful.  Sometimes, body work, such as Chiropractic, Massage and Acupuncture, and energy work, such as Reiki and sound healing are effective in inducing relaxation.  


So back pain, including low back pain, can have complex roots and varied treatments.  This blog’s offer:  call or email me for an appointment or consultation to address your low back pain or just ask me about some of the concepts in this blog.  Have a happy, safe, month, one that gets better and better each day.  











Thursday, April 28, 2022

         Blog 122  Blood Oxygen Level:  What It is and How to Improve It


Blood oxygen (O2) level is a measurement of the percent of blood oxygen saturation.  It is necessary to have a minimum level of blood O2 in order to maintain good health, and even to survive, since blood and oxygen support all the internal organs as well as the eyes and other sensory organs, including the skin.  Oxygen comes in with the breath, goes to the lungs, from there travels to the bloodstream and then all over the body.  The easiest way to measure blood O2 level, is with a small machine called a pulse oximeter, which gives information about both blood oxygen level and pulse rate.  The tip of a finger or toe is inserted into the instrument to obtain a reading.  Normal level is 95 to 100.  Sometimes, when the value is lower than this, it may be due to temporary poor circulation or transient poor breathing due to stress, spinal or rib misalignments, sleep apnea or an upper respiratory tract infection.  However, there are also more concerning causes, including but not limited to pneumonia, heart disease, cystic fibrosis, asthma, lung cancer, Covid-19, injury to the neck or head, smoke inhalation injury and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).  


Symptoms of low blood oxygen include pallor, blue hue of lips or the rest of the skin, fatigue, headache, coughing, breathlessness or wheezing upon physical exertion, confusion, and red skin color, the last of which may be due to excess carbon dioxide (CO2) in the blood.  Generally, it is recommended that you consult a physician if your blood O2 level falls below 92 or 90 for more than several hours.  If the O2 level falls below 88 or 85 for more than a few minutes, some physicians recommend you seek emergency or urgent care.   When levels fall to 55 or below, heart and lung failure will ensue, followed by death, if not quickly addressed.  


From observing myself and many patients over the past two and a fraction years, I have learned several things about how to interpret and address blood oxygen levels.  Some of these are easy fixes, and can raise low blood O2 level quickly.  Others may require the help of a health care provider.  1.Nail polish may interfere with reading, so don’t wear it on the finger or toe from which you are taking a reading.  2.Make sure your waistband or belt are not restricting breathing.  3.Make sure that you have sufficient circulation into your extremities by walking around the room, waving your hands in the air, doing jumping jacks, etc for at least 30 seconds prior to taking a reading.  4.Work on abdominal breathing, which may help you absorb more oxygen into the lungs.  Here is a good link about this type of breathing.  How to do abdominal (belly) breathing  I also have published blogs about abdominal breathing in the past.  5.Check for sleep apnea.  Do you snore?  Are you aware that you stop breathing when you are dreaming or at other times?  Changing sleep positions, losing some weight, especially belly fat, and getting a CPAP machine are some solutions to sleep apnea.  So are hypnosis and self-hypnosis to address stress or inner conflicts.  6.Stop eating before you are full, and do not eat until you are hungry.  7.Stop smoking anything (not just cigarettes).  8.Spend daily time out of doors, preferably around trees or by a large body of water.  9.Visit your chiropractor, massage therapist or acupuncturist for an adjustment or other treatment.  I have observed blood O2 rise from low 80’s to upper 90’s after a treatment more than once.  And the results were maintained following the treatment.  10.Exercise regularly, gently to moderately challenging your heart and lungs.  11.Purchase and use a good quality air purifier in your home.  12.Stay hydrated with good water and other healthful fluids, and include lots of vegetables and fruit as well as anti-inflammatory herbs, like turmeric in your diet.  


If your blood O2 does not improve, or if you are feeling dizzy or your skin color has grown blue or paler or redder, please go to the emergency room.  Of course, if you have pneumonia, severe asthma or some other serious condition, you will need more than just the suggestions mentioned above.  Medical testing, prescription medications, and other treatments may be necessary.  


Using a pulse oximeter regularly is an interesting way to learn about what helps optimize your blood oxygen level, and therefore your health.  It also is a good tool to use to make sure any symptoms you may have are not due to low blood O2.  You can purchase a pulse oximeter at a pharmacy or over the internet for anywhere from $10 to $200.  


This blog’s offer:  call for a consultation or treatment if you have questions about blood oxygen level and how to improve it.  After a consultation, history and exam, I will give you suggestions, offer you a treatment, or suggest you consult a medical doctor.






Wednesday, March 30, 2022

                     Blog 121 Optimize Vitamin D and Support Immunity


One of many ways to optimize immune function is through proper nutrition, including good Vitamin D levels.  Opinions vary about the best Vitamin D range, but from my research of varied medical and nutritional literature, I have concluded the best range falls between 40 and 80 ng/mL.  Some people say that it is best to have values between 80 and 100 ng/mL when working to prevent viral, or other, infections.  Levels of 30 ng/mL and below can be problematic, and should be raised by sunlight exposure, nutrient supplementation, and improved diet. 


Vitamin D, which is actually a hormone, can perform many functions, including supporting healthy bone density, reducing pain and inflammation, reducing rheumatoid arthritis joint pain, soothing and smoothing skin, healing gastric ulcers, and protecting against infection, especially in the winter.  Additionally, The Mayo Clinic states that long-term Vitamin D supplementation can reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis and that low blood levels of tis vitamin are associated with cognitive decline.  Some sources have observed that Vitamin D may sometimes help reduce depression and anxiety.  Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy may result in neonatal rickets, childhood asthma, and an increased tendency to develop autoimmune ailments, especially type 1 diabetes.  The mother may suffer from pre-eclampsia, which may endanger both her and the baby.  


The three best ways to obtain this vitamin/hormone are direct sunlight, especially in the warmer latitudes, nutritional supplementation, and whole foods.  Tanning salons are not recommended.  In the northernmost latitudes, it is necessary to obtain most of this vitamin from foods and supplements.  Eskimos consume lots of fish and animal blubber, both of which are rich in Vitamin D.  Other food sources of Vitamin D are egg yolks, fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines and anchovies, mushrooms (Vitamin D2 only) and cod liver oil (also high in Vitamin A and a broad spectrum of omega fatty acids).  Food quality is important for optimal nutrient absorption, so, if possible, choose wild caught fish, preferably from relatively clean waters, choose eggs from hens raised in optimal organic or biodynamic conditions and organically raised mushrooms.  Cod liver oil should be obtained from fish living in as pure water as possible, such as the arctic regions.  The oil should be minimally processed, if at all. Because of the relatively high levels of vitamin A to D, taking too much of this oil may cause problems for a developing fetus, so it shouldn’t be taken during pregnancy.  Sun bathing and simple D supplements are preferable for pregnant women.  People taking Statins, some blood pressure medications and Warfarin or other anti-coagulants generally should avoid this oil unless they consult their PCP and adjust the medication dosage to accommodate to the effects of this oil.  For example, cod liver oil tends to lower blood pressure and also is a mild anti-coagulant.  Some popular oil brands are Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil, Carlson Wild Norwegian Cod Liver Oil and Blue Ice Fermented Cod Liver Oil.  Some popular brands of Vitamin D3 are Essential Elements D3, Life Extension Vitamin D3,  Nature Wise D3, and MegaFood Vitamin D3 for Immune and Bone Health.  


Parts of the world population may have problems absorbing this nutrient.  They include the elderly, the immunocompromised, darker-skinned people, those who have gastrointestinal conditions such as leaky gut, people who live in the northern latitudes, the overweight or obese, people with health issues involving liver or kidneys, people who live in areas with high air pollution, those who use sunscreen, and those with cool or cold skin.  Sometimes, taking in a combination of Vitamins D, A and omega fatty acids will help improve absorption, as will taking a good probiotic, eating fermented foods, regulating blood sugar, getting enough sleep, improving food quality, sufficient hydration, exercising regularly and learning to relax and deal with stress more effectively.  Checking the baseline blood level, making life or nutritional changes, if needed, and checking again in about six months will usually help optimize the level of this hormone.  


Below are three links you might enjoy.  


The Best Way to Get Vitamin D: Sun, Supplements, or Salons?


Optimal Vitamin D Level › pmc › articles › PMC3540805


This blog’s offer:  contact me with any questions or with help setting up ways to check your vitamin D levels if you don’t have a PCP who will do this for you.  Happy Spring!
























Sunday, February 27, 2022

                     Blog# 120 How Much Inner Peace for World Peace?


A lot.  But what is the alternative route?   Meticulous international policing overseen by one autocrat backed by an army of artificial intelligences?  The world is currently dealing with what may be the aftermath of accidental or purposeful germ-warfare gone pandemic.  We may also be on the brink of what could be a third world war.  And there are countless small conflicts breaking out or extending indefinitely all over the globe.  Many nations, especially the U.S., are increasingly politically and ideologically divided, and it appears that crime has increased in the past couple of years in the U.S. and some other nations.  Big Business and Big Agriculture are waging war on the soil, air, water, food, health, and more.  In my opinion, the most humane and potentially lasting solution for all this divisiveness is individual inner peace, rippling out from each person to bring about peace in families, neighborhoods, towns, cities, states, nations, organizations, and more.  


It takes a long time to cultivate inner peace, and time is in short supply.  But working for outer peace, in families, organizations, nations, and other entities will hasten the development of inner peace.  Asking for a family member’s forgiveness, doing a kindness for a friend or neighbor with whom we had a falling out, listening attentively to someone from another country or political party or religion and making an effort to imagine being in their shoes can help both parties stay calmer, more awake and more willing to communicate honestly and fairly than in an atmosphere of judgement and distrust.


I would like to share with you two people who have dedicated their lives to working toward inner and world peace.  They have inspired and helped many people, including me.  The first person is David Coon, a Qigong Master living in North Carolina, who, for decades now, has taught and helped many people to heal their health, outlook and lives.  He teaches in person and zoom classes and also offers online classes.  He shares stories about how he had to change and mature in order to be more effective in his work.  David has recently written a book entitled “Qigong for Beginners: Your Path to Greater Health and Vitality”.  His wife, Tanya Coon, is a well-known Acupuncturist who also offers instruction on line for distance healing with Acupuncture.


One of the Qigong practices for inner peace that David taught in a free of charge on-line class recently is easy to learn and practice.  The challenge comes in doing it every day for an extended period of time and with a focused mind.  This exercise/meditation can be done standing, seated or lying supine.  I recommend that you start by doing it seated and then progress to standing, if you choose.  Palms are placed together in the prayer position, hands placed against the sternum in the area of the heart, but midline in the body, with fingers pointed upward.  Hold the phrase and intention “deep inner peace” in your mind.  Keep your body still.  You could start doing this for a minute a day and gradually build up to 20 minutes or more.  After several months, changes begin to occur in the body, mind and emotions.  I cannot recommend this and the other exercises that David teaches enough.  Below is a link to David Coon’s website, where you can find a two hour Qigong for Peace workshop he recently taught.  It is free of charge because things are priceless.  Alternatively, you can go to YouTube and search for David Coon Qigong for Peace.  


Another person who is an important influence for inner and world peace is Peace Pilgrim, a woman who, starting in her 40’s, began repeated journeys on foot across the U.S. and also in parts of Mexico and Canada for world peace.  She owned nothing except the clothes she wore, a toothbrush, comb and sometimes some letters forwarded to her by her sister in their hometown in New Jersey.  After making an excellent living for quite a few years, she chose to dedicate her life to moving the world closer to a more lasting peace in the way most appropriate for her.  This involved walking long distances and giving talks on the many aspects of peace, including peace for individuals and nations.  She decided to not eat until offered food and to not sleep until given shelter.  Since Peace carried no money and no longer had any possessions, no one had a reason to rob her.  Periodically, she sent newsletters out to friends she had made during her travels.  She was vegetarian because she did not want to place people in the position of killing and inflicting suffering on animals to provide her with food.  She noted that when she had attained inner peace, she no longer suffered physical illness or discomfort.   She walked for peace for almost thirty years, until her death.  She encouraged people not to get attached to her, but rather to remember the message she spread through her talks, writings and life.   


After her death, a group of her friends and students got together and compiled a book, “Peace Pilgrim: in Her Own Words”  from her talks, interviews, newsletters, correspondence with them, and more.  A couple of her quotes are below:

“This is the way of peace: overcome evil with good, falsehood with truth, and hatred with love.”

Another quote, which reflected the way she lived every day, is”

“No one walks so safely as one who walks humbly and with great love and great faith.  For such a person gets through to the good in others (and there is good in everyone) and therefore cannot be harmed.  This works between individuals, it works between groups, and it would work between nations if nations had the courage to try it.”

You can find Peace Pilgrim’s website at  It contains books, newsletters, recordings, films, and more.


This blog’s offer:  feel free to contact me for further information about Qigong instruction from David Coon (or from me) and for more information about Peace Pilgrim.