ERM 004 Dr. Justine Blainey Broker: The Value of Competitive Sports, Daily Rituals & Working Hard For What You Believe In

IMG_2535At the early age of 12 years old, Justine Blainey learned that the price of a value held dear can be loneliness and friendship, despair and elation, endless work and useful work, and the sometime sadness tinged with satisfaction of a life lived well, a life lived to serve. Her beliefs became action and five court cases later, the Ontario Human Rights Code was amended to remove legislated inequality in sports, and Justine hit the ice with the boys. Justine has not sat on the pride of her past achievements. Justine continues to believe passionately in equality.

Now Dr. Justine Blainey-Broker, Doctor of Chiropractic, she has spoken internationally about chiropractic, health and well-being. She provides entrepreneurial advice and inspiration to thousands of Health Professionals and runs a busy family practice in Brampton, Ontario.

Justine is a passionate doctor, but she is also a devoted wife, and mother to two teenagers! On this episode she shares her ideas about motherhood, we also talked about the value of competitive sports in her life and for both her children,

She also shares some of her experience in fighting for equality in the hockey world as a youth, the impact of being an activist, how that shaped her as a woman and continues to influence her today.

Justine is a very busy woman, on this episode she also shares how she manages their family’s busy schedule, the value of a few key daily rituals for her, the importance of having a support team, and some of her strategies to keeping her marriage strong.

Justine is a dynamo, is a powerhouse, a hard worker with strong values – check out her interview!

Reduce Inflammation & Prevent Arthritis

ID-10092149Arthritis is a term used very loosely in a broad range of circumstances, and many people are not exactly clear as to what arthritis actually is.  The word “Arthritis” means inflammation of the joints. The cartilage surface that lines either side of a joint begins to breakdown, causing the joint space to narrow. The increased friction and stress on the joint surfaces causes an inflammatory response consisting of swelling, pain and loss of function.

Quite simply, the joints begin to wear out prematurely.

However, random genetic mutations aside, the human body was not made to break down. So what causes arthritis? Improper alignment and faulty mechanics.

Proper alignment and function of joints is essential to maintaining healthy joints. When a joint is out of alignment, proper mechanics are altered and muscle imbalances occur. Whether it’s your spine, hips, knees, feet, shoulders, elbow, or wrists, every joint needs to be moving the way it was designed to in order to function well.

Proper joint function cannot be maintained if the joints are not properly aligned. Just like mal-alignment of your automobile causes the tires to wear out faster, spinal subluxations create the same problem in your spinal joints.  With greater stabilization within the spine, the other joints can heal too. Only a trained, licensed Chiropractor can locate subluxations, correct them, and restore structural balance to your body.

With the correction of spinal subluxations, the joints heal.  I see it all the time in my practice with dramatic changes in symptoms, but also objectively with improvements in measurable diagnostic tests such as X-rays, as well as with neurological and orthopedic testing.  Not only within the spine, but also with knees, shoulders, elbows, finger, and feet.

The body is self-healing, but all healing takes time.  The longer the joint breakdown process has been occurring, the longer it will take to fully heal. For some people, the only challenge with the Chiropractic approach is just that…time.

By the time joint degeneration has reached the point of chronic pain, the process has often been developing for years.  Every spinal adjustment retrains your brain and muscles towards healthy mechanics, building momentum and greater stability along the way.

The good news is that although it doesn’t take years to correct the damage, it does take a consistent and holistic approach to restoring proper motion in your body to heal fully.  The body’s ability to heal is so profound, it doesn’t take years to restore function to the body and feel better. It does take time though, and is not the “quick fix” that many are looking for.

The question I often ask people is this: do you want to patch things up or fully heal? I am honoured to help people with a wide variety of goals and health challenges, and I respect everyone’s ability to choose the level of chiropractic care that suits them, but my recommendations are always the same. 

Based on my years of experience (in both practice and life!), fixing something properly generally works the best! Not only does it ultimately save time and investment in the long term, more importantly it gives people the opportunity to start LIVING sooner.

ERM 003 Michele Rich: New Directions, The Power of Meditation & Being A Student of Motherhood

3770LinkedMichele is a mother to a teen-aged daughter, married to a great guy, and a Registered Psychotherapist with an independent practice.  Michele is also the Executive Director of a non-profit organization called The Environment Network, and she teaches at Georgian College. Her goal is to empower people by helping them to understand themselves and guide them into a healthy, joyful life.  Michele dedicates her time and energy to all of these endeavours because she believes, deep in her heart, that this is the way to heal the world.  Making sure that she maintains a healthy, joyful life herself can sometimes be tricky, but it is definitely possible.

On today’s episode Michele she shares her ideas about what motherhood has taught her , the impact of some of the challenges she has faced, why she decided to go back to school, and how she manages to make her family life and career work. She talks about the parenting choices she wishes she could have reversed, the ongoing joys of motherhood, and how she finds time to stay connected with her growing daughter.

She also discusses her secret weapon for giving her focus, preparing her for challenges, calming her in times of chaos, and why it’s one of the top tips she recommends to all her clients.

Michele can be reached at 705.444.3372 or mrich@environmentnetwork.org.

ERM 002 Rula Sharkawi: Pursuing Dreams, Setting Intentions & Family Balance

Rula’s passion for good food and a pursuit of creativity in business makes for an innovative and delicious line-up of My Little Chickpea products. She began her career over 25 years ago helping run two family restaurants and then, following graduate school, went into corporate communications and crisis management. She left her role as an executive in the corporate world to return to where it all began—food. Since launching My Little Chickpea, this big chickpea has never been happier, spreading the comfort and energy of clean food goodness to communities all around her!  Rula lives in Toronto with her husband and two gorgeous little chickpeas, Gabe and Julian!

On today’s episode Rula talks about what prompted her to make the big leap from corporate life to entrepreneurship, how that decision improved her relationship with her sons and her husband, and how this lifestyle change has create more joy in her life. Rula shares how she focuses her time, what motivates her everyday, and where she finds inspiration. She also discusses the importance of having goals and setting intentions on a daily basis to ground her as both a mother and business women.

Rula makes time to take care of herself too! We talked about the importance of nourishing the female spirit, keeping excitement in marriage, and dealing with challenges in life, work, and parenting.  A wonderful woman with an inspiring story!

Connect With Rula & Find Out More About My Little Chickpea

ERM 001 Darlene Christianson: Be Open To Adventure, Reinventing Yourself, & Being Present With Your Kids

dar1Darlene grew up in small town Ontario, Canada and was married with two beautiful kids by the age of 23. After being a stay at home mom for 5 years, Darlene moved back to cottage country and pursued a career in new home sales. Her children grew older, she divorced, went back to school, and enjoyed a variety of work opportunities before meeting the love of her life, remarrying, and blending her family with his. Together with her husband she has conducted tours all over Europe, travelled extensively, and now lives and works in Washington, DC.

Throughout her life Darlene has been heavily involved in volunteer opportunities, in particularly in events that support other women. She is the creator and leader of the meet up group in DC area called WAM – women achieving more – with currently boasts over 300 members. She’s a dynamic, lively personality who likes to give back and help others, that certainly comes across in her interview today.

On today’s show we discussed Darlene’s life experiences and journey as a mother, the tough times, the joys, and how relationships with children are constantly evolving. She describes why she feels motherhood is better than she thought it would be, the key strategies she used to stay connected to her kids during times of transition, and her role in a blended family. Darlene also shares how she keeps some excitement in her marriage, how she makes time to take care of herself, and why she feels it’s important to stay open to the unexpected possibilities and adventures life brings us.

Breathe Easier With Allergy Relief

69443tegi1jeqhsIt’s that time of year again (at least the calendar is suggesting so even if the weather is not!) when springtime seasonal allergies trouble people. People come into the office sneezing, with their eyes watering and itching, but they always feel better when they leave.

What’s the Chiropractic connection? 

Allergies occur when the immune system overreacts to an allergen (dust, pollen, pet dander, foods) and produces too many histamines to counteract this process. Histamines are chemicals the body creates to neutralize the effects of the item offending the respiratory or visual system, a way the body’s innate wisdom attempts to correct the problem.  Histamines cause you to produce mucous, sneeze, will make your eyes watery, and even give you rash sometimes, all ways the body tries to expel the offending allergen. Most allergy medications attempt to treat the symptoms your body instigates to get rid of the allergen.  Antihistamines dry up the mucous membranes, and minimize the sneezing, itching and congestion. They can provide relief, but the underlying problem remains.

What if there was another way to help your body with Allergies?

The Chiropractic approach focuses on restoring proper function to your body, so that you can better adapt to the ‘stressors’ in your environment, including those of seasonal allergies.

Spinal misalignments (termed subluxations) are caused by physical stress, emotional stress, and chemical stress. These misalignments in your spine cause muscle imbalances, joint irritation, inflammation, pain, and weakness. What is more important though, spinal subluxations affect your spinal cord and impair healthy neurological function.

Chiropractic adjustments correct misalignments in your spine, restoring proper joint movement, balancing your muscles, and improving your overall health! 

Specific to allergies, the correction of spinal subluxations helps your body respond more appropriately to the pollens, dander and other airborne items you inhale because they help restore balance to your immune system.  There is a direct correlation between your spine and immune system.  It’s simple: A nervous system that is working more effectively permits the immune system to function more effectively – something all allergy sufferers need!

How can you get started finding relief?

If you’ve been suffering with allergies – there is another option! Call or email for more information. An initial consultation and assessment will determine if Chiropractic can help you, and whether my approach is right for you.  Following your evaluation we’ll create an action plan to get you functioning and feeling better.  Many people in my practice note dramatic reductions in their allergy symptoms and improvements in their overall wellbeing when they add Chiropractic care to their life.

What Is Holistic Care?

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Spinal misalignments called vertebral subluxations cause muscle imbalances, joint irritation, inflammation, and early degeneration. Spinal subluxations alter the healthy mechanical and neurological functions in the body. Subluxations weaken all organ systems, leading to sickness, pain,  and a lesser quality of life. As a Doctor of Chiropractic, I correct spinal subluxations to restore proper motion and function within the body. What causes spinal subluxations?  STRESS! – physical, chemical and mental/emotional.

Adjusting the spine removes the effects of the stress in your body, but I’ve always believed it’s important to look at what is creating it. If we only address the spinal subluxations with adjustments, we might not be addressing the real cause of the problems with your health. 

The lifestyle choices you make (exercise, nutrition, sleep, good relationships, positive thinking, hydration etc.) have a huge impact of the results you will obtain with chiropractic.

The goal of your care in this practice is to help you THRIVE in all aspects of your health, and life.

In addition to clinical care, there is an extensive lending library, workshops, an interactive web community, and weekly articles to take with you.  I produce a television show with Rogers TV, Good Living, Good Health that covers a wide range of topics that pertain to healthy living (watch it on channel 53 or ask to borrow a copy). I also have  an extensive network of other health professionals and resources within our community with whom I can connect you with to make other changes in your health.  

In my experience, when lifestyle changes are combined with chiropractic care, the transformations are profound.  

Entering my 14th year of practice, I continued to be inspired by the healing that I witness, and the increased quality of people’s lives as a result.

Consider learning more, and making other changes to your health to support your chiropractic care.

Ask me when you’re ready, and I’ll help you get started.

The Importance of Play – For Grown Ups!

ID-10042767Recreation is defined in the dictionary as “refreshment of one’s mind or body after work through activity that amuses or stimulates play; activity that refreshes and recreates or activity that renews your health and spirits by enjoyment and relaxation.” We all need time to re-energize and refocus.

When was the last time you did something spontaneous and fun? Do your hobbies make your heart smile? I love being on my mountain bike in the warm months because I feel like a 10-year old every time – even more so when my friends and I put backpacks on and head to the beach! My young sons also keep ‘play’ in my life because much of our time together is spent doing so! They are a great reminder for me to make time for fun, and to keep my life balanced.

Recently a patient noticed all the silly faces the children in my practice on the wall, and she commented that adults seem to lose some of that ability to be silly, and that so many people lose their sense of fun because they care too much what others will think. Perhaps it’s because as adults we get weighed down with responsibilities and lack the time. The good news is we can always reroute and make some changes in support of more balance in our lives. We can choose to prioritize time for fun knowing it’s a step in the direction of better health. Enjoying an activity, time to yourself or connecting with friends, moving your body…are all important parts of a healthy lifestyle.

Time for recreation and play is time worth spent to make the rest of your life more productive, and all your relationships better, including the one you have with yourself. Often busy parents prioritize everyone else in their home, and make time for themselves ‘only if you they have time’. I challenge you to rethink this. Taking care of yourself is a gift for everyone in your life! When you feel depleted, tired, unmotivated it’s difficult to take care of your children or give your best at work. Small windows of time to yourself, time to breathe, to focus on something that brings you peace, joy, and reconnects you to YOU is not a luxury, but a proven strategy for improving performance in all facets of our life.

If aches, pains, or other health challenges are stopping you from doing the things you love to do, let me know and let’s figure out what’s causing the problem. If someone you care about is limited in their ability to pursue hobbies, sports or leisure activities, tell them about chiropractic and let’s get them feeling better! I have a huge network of doctors and can easily find a suitable referral for them if they don’t live close by.

“The people who live long are those who long to live” ~ Anonymous

Playtime is important! We all need time to re-energize and refocus. Make time for leisure and fun as an active step to improved health and wellbeing. 

“I Feel Fine”

ID-10083065Many people don’t think they need to see a Chiropractor because they ‘feel fine’.

Many people hold the belief that if we have symptoms we are sick, and if are without symptoms then we are healthy. Much of modern health care relies on this approach, ridding people of their symptoms.  Many people come into my practice to get rid of their symptoms, seeking relief from the physical ailments they are experiencing.  But there are limitations with this belief.

Some of the sickest people in this country are symptom free. Similarly, a person who is experiencing symptoms is not necessarily SICK. Many of the symptoms people experience are actually signs that the body is healing, and stopping those symptoms can inhibit the healing process.

Think about some of these examples:

fevers – the body raises the internal temperature to kill bacterias or viruses

sneezing/coughing/vomiting/diarrhea – the body is trying to expel something foreign to it!

joint pain – the body tells us to be careful, to avoid using the joint and doing further damage

swelling – the body creates a natural splint to protect the joint

inflammation – the body increases the circulation to repair the injured tissue

bloating & indigestion – the body tells us something we ate was not right for us!

Symptoms are not bad, they just tell us to pay more attention! Every symptom is our body lovingly giving us a message.  When symptoms occur, our body is trying its best to communicate with us. Do you listen and act? Or just try to stop it? It’s up to you.

Life is a process, not an event, and so is healing. Sometimes symptoms are simply part of the healing response, part of your body adapting to a new healthier internal state and a way it clears things out.

Health is not defined as an absence of symptoms; and sickness and dis-ease in the the body don’t only occur in the presence of symptoms. Health is a condition of wholeness in which all your muscles and organs are functioning 100%. Spinal subluxations disturb this process, and will cause symptoms as your body tries to communicate something is wrong.

I care about your symptoms, but I care more about your whole body and the longer-term effects of neurological and structural damage going on inside you!

After a chiropractic adjustment your body will always function at a higher level, regardless of how you feel. I know the power of a chiropractic adjustment. I have witnessed it for almost 15 years clinically, and I have seen it personally with myself and my family.

Symptoms might be the reason many people come into my practice, but it’s not what gets them excited to stay once they are feeling better! If you are living with spinal subluxations you are simply not functioning at your peak. Chiropractic will cause your symptoms to resolve, but most importantly it ensures your body is functioning as a whole so that you can move, think and feel your best.