5 Little Things

I often have several books I am reading and currently “The Leader Without a Title” by Robin Sharma is in the mix. It’s not uncommon for me to find some correlation to health from most of the material I read, and in this particular case Sharma’s particular point had me thinking about health goals for people…what if you just tried to do 5 daily things to improve your health? Imagine doing 5 little, yet important, intentional acts everyday to get you closer to your most important health goal: feeling and functioning well….

I’m not talking about massive, major changes to your health that require a dramatic lifestyle change, but small daily things that ultimately create a bigger impact because you are actually doing them.

“Success in anything is created through the performance of a few small daily disciplines that stack up over time to create stunning results” – Robin Sharma

It’s much easier to build on small steps and gradually add more, than to attempt a massive change. It’s likely that you’re already doing some great things to support your health, but perhaps they have already become so routine for you that you’ve even forgotten they are good for you!

Focusing on the good things you are already doing, and all the good things your body is capable of doing is also a powerful gratitude reminder and can motivate other small changes. Can you think of 5 things that you do on any given day to support good health? This month I challenge you to take a minute and think about what consistent simple habits you are doing, even post them on the wall in the office.

Need some ideas? Here’s some to get you thinking

reduce your caffeine or alcohol

drink more water

go for a walk/run/swim/bike/hike

visit a friend

eat some fruit

go to bed a little earlier

play with your children

read a book

put that donut or cookie down

take a yoga class

breathe (with awareness! consciously relaxing, with full deep breaths)

do something you love

learn something that can help you live healthier

get adjusted!

Expanding Your Potential

Lately there have been many conversations from people in the practice about how surprised they are that they are able to do ‘so much’ without physically harming themselves, how they feel they are able to deal with stress more effectively or ‘handle more’ before feeling overwhelmed.

A little reminder: The body is amazing!

Every minute of the day your body is coordinating a multitude of activities…your heart is beating and sending blood and oxygen to all your cells; your lungs are expanding and contracting to exchange oxygen with the environment; your digestive track makes use of the food you take in to give you energy and will remove wastes; your immune system is constantly fighting microorganisms that try to inhabit your body…I could go on and on.

Your body can do all these things simultaneously, every second of the day, because your brain is coordinating it all.

Spinal subluxations are caused by stress (physical, mental, emotional & chemical) but they also create stress within the body.

Chiropractic adjustments work because they remove stress from your nervous system and maximize your brain’s ability to coordinate all internal activities, and yes, your joints will move better too!

Healthy joint function allows you to move freely, without pain, and push yourself more to become stronger, fitter and more flexible if you choose to.

You are designed in perfection to be who you are, to express every gift inside you, and to perform! It’s up to you to use those skills, to pursue your interests, and to take responsibility for your health and ensure your body performs the way it was designed to. Forget limitations, the goal of your care in this practice is to help your body thrive in every possible way by removing stress from your nervous system, and then guiding and supporting you in developing other health habits.

Chiropractic helps your ability to work, play, and live with a full range of physical abilities and emotional awareness, and ultimately to expand your potential.

Everything Is Better!

ID-10083065Chiropractic is not just for sick people.

When I meet people and they learn I am a Chiropractor itʼs common for their next comment to be “Iʼm lucky, I donʼt have back pain”. Needless to say, this puts a smirk on my face, and an interesting conversation starts…

Chiropractic is not a treatment for any ailment, but a way to allow the body to function the way it was designed to. From balancing your structure and providing relief for so many joint problems, to the powerful healing of countless health issues inside the body, Chiropractic works because every adjustment gives your body the opportunity to function without interference to the most powerful coordinating system ever known – the brain and spinal cord.

Every adjustment reconnects the brain and body. Itʼs why headaches stop, digestion improves, previously immobile children start to walk, and why skin rashes clear up.

Itʼs for these reasons that more people than ever are choosing Chiropractic care not just to feel better or ʻrelieve back painʼ but to function better in every aspect of their life.

Chiropractic care isnʼt just for the sick, suffering or wounded, itʼs for people who want to be their best….in health, in sports, in moods, in family relations, in energy, in memory and mental ability, in physical dexterity, in coordination, in life!

Fun In The Sun!

ID-10026830My favorite season is summer! I love the sunshine, relaxed schedule, outdoor living and so many sports and hobbies. Here’s a few ideas to help deal with the parts of summer that can occasionally make it a little less fun…

Sun Safety – Natural sunlight is essential for good health, time in the sun is a question of balance. Daily moderate exposure enables the body to produce vitamin D and make melanin (our body’s natural sunscreen). However, overexposure causes damage to the skin, accelerates aging, suppresses the immune system, and can lead to cancers. Children are much more sensitive than adults so taking some precautions is wise. Use hats, and cover the skin with clothing when possible. Seek out the shade and balance time out in the sun with breaks indoors. This also helps prevent heat exhaustion and dehydration. If you are choosing to use sunscreen, be mindful of the toxic chemicals in many sunscreens that can be worse for the body than sun exposure! Check out cosmeticsdatabase.com for a list you can shop with.

Bites and Stings – Stings from a bee or wasp are not usually dangerous unless you suffer from an allergy, but they should always be treated immediately nonetheless. Apply a paste of baking soda and water to a bee sting to relieve pain; make a compress from a pad of cotton soaked in lemon juice and apply to a wasp sting. *Multiple stings, or stings to the eyes, ears or mouth should be treated in the hospital.* Mosquitos Avoid bug repellents that contain DEET which is effective for repelling insects but also extremely hazardous to your health. Instead, prevent insect bites by diluting a few drops (or combination of) any of the following essential oils: eucalyptus, citronella, peppermint, rosemary, clove, citronella or lemongrass in half a mug of water, gently apply to exposed areas avoiding the eyes and mouth. Experiment and find a scent that you like, place in a spray bottle and keep on hand for easy access when enjoying the outdoors. Cider vinegar can be used the same way and the smell evaporates as soon as it dries.

Cuts & Bruises – So common in childhood, but also with active grown-ups, or random accidents! If there is extensive bleeding, or any other unusual symptoms such as dizziness, shortness of breath, or a head of injury, take your child to the hospital for emergency treatment. Carefully clean the area and then apply a clean cloth soaked in witch hazel or a cold compress and some TLC! Arnica cream is also useful for soreness.

First Aid Remedies * Please note I am comfortable handling most minor injuries based on my training but have still made trips to the ER for stitches! If in doubt how to handle an injury or illness, call get in touch with me, contact your medical doctor or head to the emergency room for further advice. There are no pharmaceuticals, harsh chemicals or commercial preparations in my home, period. Any illness, accident or health concern, I can support naturally with some of the items listed here, herbal medicines, foods, fluids or rest! Here’s what I keep on hand for most first aid emergencies:

Arnica cream or Traumeel – for aches and pains, to help reduce inflammation

Homeopathic remedies –  taken orally, 5 granules under the tongue. Directions are on on most packages.

Arnica 30c – for bites, bruises, cuts, broken skin, burns, scalds, nosebleeds, stings, sprains, fractures, muscular aches and pains,

Aconite 30c  – for fear, anxiety, restlessness, sudden illness, intense pain, shock. Give it to any child who has been hurt or traumatized in any way

Chamomilla 30c  – for teething, insomnia, earaches, digestive troubles, anytime they need

Band-Aids, gauze, Tweezers, Ice packs

Hydrogen Peroxide, Rubbing Alcohol – Basic disinfectants, but the best way to clean a wound is to first wash your hands, then wash the wound with mild natural soap and water…this is what I use 90% of the time!

Witch Hazel – Strong natural antioxidant and astringent; good for disinfecting and promotes healing. Also helps with itching and inflammation.

Bach Rescue Remedy – A flower remedy designed for shock, trauma, any type of anxiety. Can be taken orally. Very relaxing and soothing.

Calendula cream – Great healing salve for cuts, stings, burns, scrapes and scratches, any skin irritation. Easy to find at any natural health store or at markets throughout the summer!

Olive oil – soothing to the skin and a great carrier oil for using essential oils. Use about a 1/4 cup combined with 6-10 drops of the essential oil. Essential oils are highly concentrated and should not be used directly on the skin. There are so many essential oils of benefit to keep in your home, these are my top 3:

Tea Tree Oil: antibiotic, antifungal, antiseptic and antiviral Eucalyptus: antibiotic, analgesic (pain relieving), antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory                                                            Lavender:antiseptic,antibiotic,analgesic,antiviral,antifungal,antidepressant,healing,and sedating

It’s a Question of Time…

“There is no process that does not require time”                                                           – Principle #6 in Chiropractic Philosophy

Sometimes we all need to be reminded of this simple idea.

Whether you are learning a new skill, starting a business, grieving a loss, building relationships, adapting to a new home or community, or changing a habit, it’s important to remember that time is an essential requirement.

I see so many people who are invested in their health, who want to honor their body and take care of themselves. However, many health professionals will also attest to the fact that what we also see (more often than we would like) are people who are looking for the quickest results possible, instant gratification, a short-term fix but not long-term healing.

Occasionally this approach is necessary because of finances, scheduling challenges, work responsibilities, or geography, but sometimes real healing just isn’t a priority for people because they don’t want to accept this very simple, but crucial fact:

When it comes to the human body virtually all functions are dependent on time, and in no area is this more evident than with healing.

It takes time for cells to regenerate. It takes time for muscle patterns to change. It takes time to break down scar tissue and muscle adhesions. It takes time for flexibility to increase. It takes time for symptoms to change. It takes time for structural changes to be evident on X-rays. It takes time for healthy joint motion to be restored.

Chiropractic spinal adjustments restore proper function to the joints, and restore balance to the nervous system. It’s not magic, even though sometimes it’s what many of you might think!

The systematic adjustment and tuning of your spine with consistency produces massive changes in your body’s structure, but this doesn’t happen with one adjustment, it happens with TIME.

There are things you can do to speed the process, ways to reduce the physical or mental stressors in your life to help your body even more. Ask me if you need some direction, otherwise take comfort in the fact that your body is healing and your health problems are subsiding, it may just take a little more time.

Clear it Out!


Many parents tell me that often one of the first things that happens when they bring their children home from an adjustment is that they head to the bathroom!

I’ve adjusted many people who suffer with a variety of digestive or bowel troubles, many of which resolve with Chiropractic care.

Here’s why:

Spinal Subluxations interfere with all body functions and lower your resistance to disease. Every organ in your digestive system – mouth, tongue, throat, esophagus, pyloric valve, stomach, intestines, glands, pancreas and others – needs a healthy nerve supply from your spine.

Subluxations can cause stomach, esophageal, and intestinal disorders. Of 100 people with stomach and duodenal ulcers, 86 had spinal abnormalities in the area that supplied the stomach with nerve fibres. Another study on adolescents found that 87% who were suffering with ulcers had pelvic distortions and blockages in the spine.

Chiropractic works! Correction of spinal problems relieves stomach ulcers, gastritis, colitis, and spastic constipation according to researchers, and I have certainly seen this clinically in my practice.

If the nerves are impinged upon by a subluxation, no amount of drugs will relieve the pressure. A chiropractic spinal adjustment releases pressure on your nervous system to promote body harmony, enhanced ability to cope with stress and improved resistance to disease.

Disclaimer: Chiropractic care supports overall health and healing, but is not a cure or treatment for constipation or digestive issues in children.

Spring Clean Your Body! Basic Detox Program

Spring is here! Even though the weather might not seem that way, the change of season is a great time to give your body a boost and consider a detox. Trust me, doing a detox is not a scary, depriving, horrible experience. It’s actually a great way to get refocused on healthy eating habits, give your digestive system a break and ultimately support your health.

There are countless programs out there, and even more products you can purchase to detox. I recommend this basic program because ANYONE can do it, no special products are required, and you can customize it to your comfort level and physiological needs depending on how ‘toxic’ you are. It’s also a fantastic way to determine whether you have any food intolerances or allergies, and provides great perspective on how you eat and your general attitude toward food.

Why Detox? Modern urban life is toxic by definition! Many people live a fast, hectic, stressful pace, and rely on convenient and time-saving measures to feed themselves. We are surrouded by a variety of chemicals in our environment too. Your body has its own detoxifying systems (liver, kidneys, bowels), and does an amazing job of removing wastes from your body. However, if the volume of internal waste exceeds what it is able to safely process, these organs can be overwhelmed and not function properly. If your body is carrying more toxins than it is built to handle, your health will be at risk.

The concept of detoxifying and cleansing your body has been around for hundreds of years, and has been used medicinally to promote the healing of many ailments. By giving your digestive system a ‘break’ from the task of processing, digesting, and eliminating certain foods, it can direct more energy towards cleaning out the build up of the potential stored toxins in your cells. Seasonally detoxifying supports all organ systems, allows for cell renewal, and will help you look and feel younger!

When? At minimum I recommend a detox protocol seasonally, unless there is a specific health concern that has developed to which a detox can offer benefit. To plan your detox you need to find a time when your social and work calendar is not over-booked, and when you can give yourself the time for some additional rest. It’s often a good idea to start on a weekend, so that the bulk of the detoxifying can start before the typical work week begins.

What are the benefits? After a detox program you should notice increased energy, clarity of thought, improved digestion, better sleep, glowing skin, and even the subsiding of certain health concerns. You’ll likely feel good about yourself that you were able to exert some discipline and will power, and possibly even determined some food sensitivities or allergies.

Are there any adverse effects? As your body is clearing itself of toxins you may experience some symptoms, but they are generally nothing of great concern and a sign that the detox is working. Remember, your digestive system will be healing and although you may be uncomfortable at times, they are healthy responses. Some symptoms you might experience are: furry tongue, headache, irritability, excessive elimination (urinating, diarrhea), flu/cold-like symptoms, skin eruptions, fatigue. Similar to when you contract a cold, develop an infection, or contract food poisoning, your body is doing its job to expel what does not belong inside! Consult a health professional if you experience anything that concerns you, but rest assured what you are feeling is temporary.

The plan: It’s pretty simple – Remove irritating foods and beverages, and overload your body with proper nutrients to support healing and increase the elimination of waste.

Avoid: alcohol, caffeine, refined sugars/candy/chocolate, processed food, wheat, gluten, dairy products.

Choose: an abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole foods

Let me be clear, many items we consume taste great, offer us comfort, connect us socially, or fill some other need that is not nutritional. Consuming those types of foods or beverages occasionally (think 20% of your diet) is not necessarily harmful but it’s not a health-producing habit. The objective with a detox is to support your health so minimizing (if not completely eliminating) these items is key.


DAY 1 – liquids only, unlimited quantity (water, fresh fruit and vegetable juices, unsweetened herbal teas, vegetable broth, dairy-free smoothies )

DAY 2 – liquids and fruit only

DAY 3 – add raw vegetables

DAY 4 – add cooked vegetables and brown rice

DAY 5 – add beans, lentils, nuts and seeds

DAY 6 – add grains and live yogurt*

DAY 7 – add fish

Seasonings? At any time after day 3 you need to add more flavour to your foods, consider lemon, lime, olive oil, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, sea salt, black pepper, Bragg’s unfermented soy sauce. There may be organic, pure foods I have missed here, but just keep it simple for a few days. If in doubt whether something is appropriate or not, just look at the ingredient list and if there are items you cannot pronounce or that are not real food…pass on it!

Customize it: depending on how ‘toxic’ you are, or your interest level, this program can be implemented for anywhere from 7-30 days! If you have never done a cleanse before, consider a simple 7 day program to see how your body responds. If you are more comfortable and confident with the restrictions, consider a lengthier program. Although everyone can benefit from a 21 day cleanse, only you can determine what will work for you based on your level of commitment. You might find that once you start with the first week, continuing on is easier than you think!

To create a lengthier cleanse, simply follow the food implementation protocol but extend the number of days. For example, for a 14 day program follow the DAY 1 protocol (liquids only) for 2 DAYS, for a 21 day program follow it for 3 DAYS, for 30 day program follow it for 4 days..

You can do this!

You may have read through this and thought about being deprived, and what you are giving up for a week, wondered “What am I going to eat?!”….but I’d encourage you to think about what you are going to gain from changing your diet for a week instead of what you are losing. You’re stronger than you think! It’s only a week, and chances are, you’ve done many tougher things before and surprised yourself with the result.

Like any healthy habit, making choices to support a better body is never a poor investment. Regularly giving your body a detox boost is just another part of a healthy balanced lifestyle.


Get Smarter!

21667jx2cmug83pYour brain is the most amazing and important muscle in your body, and it has the same requirements as other muscles to stay strong and healthy.

To keep building it you need to challenge it! 

Your brain has the ability to constantly grow and change. It can grow new neurons, make new connections, and even learn to inhibit dysfunctional pathways that don’t serve you (such as cravings, addictions, negative thought patterns, hyperactivity, poor memory or concentration, etc.)  It’s a huge topic, but for now let’s just focus on ways to boost it with challenge and activity.

Giving your brain new experiences helps it form new nerve pathways necessary for that activity, particularly if its something you have not done before. Trying new activities is powerful for your brain because doing so stimulates brain centres that have been dormant, or helps create entirely new pathways to complete the task at hand. Your brain is an amazing machine that can adapt to new processes and challenges, you just need to give it the experiences to do so! If you have children in your life, they are some of the best companions with their eagerness and love of adult attention.

Consider trying some of these activities on a regular basis:

  • Learn a new language
  • Do mind games (sudoko, word scrambles, brain teasers)
  • Try a new sport (builds coordination, precise muscle control, memory, strategy, plus increases blood flow to your brain!)
  • Read a book
  • Pursue something creative (painting, photography, sculpture etc.)
  • Try a new instrument (or play one you know), sing, dance
  • Learn to build models
  • Play board games or work on a puzzle

There are unlimited ideas, these are just a few. Like moving your body, it doesn’t matter WHAT you do, just do SOMETHING that will engage or challenge your brain. Choosing something you find intriguing or joyful will stregnthen your resolve to keep doing it…but remember you might not know you enjoy a new activity until you try it!


IMG_5424Life is for living. Making chiropractic adjustments part of your life is a step towards ensuring you will be able to play without being stopped by problems in your body! 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 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!

Recently a patient noticed all the silly faces the children in my practice made for their photos on the wall, and she commented that adults seem to lose some of that ability, that so many of us lose our sense of fun because we care too much what others will think. Or perhaps because 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.

Recreation 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.

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.

The joints in your body must move easily to constantly nourish and cleanse themselves, and exercise is what is needed! All physical activity supports the body, but recreational activities are the perfect way to combine fitness with fun.

This month I challenge you to get out and PLAY more. If aches and pains are stopping you, 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!  We have a huge network of great Chiropractors we work with and can easily refer them somewhere suitable.

Rib and Chest Pain Relief!

ID-10014148Many times people come into my practice with shortness of breath, pain around their ribcage, sharp pain when they inhale, and restricted movement in their mid-back. Understandably they are often a little stressed and scared  because they worry they could be suffering with  heart trouble.

Yes, the symptoms of rib subluxations can be similar those experienced during a heart attack or other cardio-respiratory concerns, and it’s important to clinically rule those possibilities out before proceeding with Chiropractic care. However, more often than not, what has happened is the joints between the ribs and the thoracic spine have become misaligned, causing pain and irritation to the surrounding tissues.

How Does Chiropractic Work?

Spinal misalignments called vertebral subluxations cause muscle imbalances, joint irritation, inflammation, and early degeneration. Since the spinal joint surround the spinal cord, spinal subluxations also impair healthy neurological function in the body. Spinal subluxations weaken all organ systems, leading to sickness, pain, and a lesser quality of life.  Doctors of Chiropractic correct spinal subluxations to restore proper mechanical and neurological function within the body.

Many people are find relief from rib and chest pain, often almost instantly, when healthy joint movement and function is restored with chiropractic spinal adjustments.

Every part of your body works better with a spine that is moving properly. Instead of relying on medications (with side effects!) help your body heal from the inside-out.

If you are suffering with pain in your rib cage, shortness of breath or restricted movement in your mid back, consider Chiropractic first!