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Archive for the ‘Women’s Health’ Category

Do you have abdominal pain? Painful periods? Digestive issues? This divine herb and essential oil infused oil might be for Mayan Abdominal Massage Oil Seattleyou. Our newest product offering was formulated using the esteemed Arvigo Techniques and contains 9 sacred Mayan herbs and essential oils of Ylang Ylang, Orange, Lavender and Lemongrass. This oil helps to restore the body to its natural balance by correcting the position of organs that have shifted and restrict the flow of blood, lymph, nerve and chi energy. We love it in combination with Castor Oil Packs. Stop by the clinic to pick some up!

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I came upon an article originally published by the Washington Post yesterday titled “Pregnancy getting attention it’s due”, Women's health no copyright infringement is intendedwhich talks about how little research is done into pregnancy than into much less common conditions.

Reading this reminded me of when doctors downplay women’s health concerns, and the disparities between how women and men are treated in medical settings.

It has been my experience working as a clinical social worker that mind/body strategies and techniques are effective ways of managing a wide array of physiological and psychological challenges.

Dr. Alice Domar, who has established the first ever Mind/Body Center for Women’s Health, as well as the very first Mind/Body Program for Fertility states: “women’s minds must be treated along with their bodies”; that this is essential to treatment success, no matter what the medical condition is.

No matter what is causing distress and/or pain –stress, cancer, autoimmune disorders, insomnia, anxiety and depression-when we attend to our minds as well as our body, we can feel better, as well as cope better with our condition on a physical, mental, emotional and spiritual level. I have included a link to a video of Dr. Alice Domar here:

If you would like to explore more about mind/body medicine, I am available in both the Madison Park and West Seattle offices for a 30-minute consultation at no charge.

Tina Michalski Psychotherapy Seattle

Tina is a psychotherapist in living in Seattle WA. A transplant for Western NY she enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter and son in law, and grandson. She loves to cook, has a lifelong interest in health, and volunteers in the vibrant Seattle theater scene.

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Dr. Shawn Morris, ND

Estrogen & Progesterone

During and after menopause, many women experience symptoms related to progesterone and estrogen decline. This is a timeherbs for menopause Seattle WA where there are also changes in types of estrogen, which may cause inflammation. Many women experience migraines, hot flashes, brain fog, and irritability during this period. In the short term, balancing hormones with supplements, herbs and minerals supports healthy transition into menopause. Long term, it is possible for most women to balance hormone levels through diet and lifestyle alone.

Hormone balance through diet, lifestyle, & herbs

Although progesterone is not found in foods, there are many ways to balance progesterone with nutrition. Primarily, if the body is in an estrogen dominant state, balancing excess estrogen metabolites is the first step. Post-menopause, too much of 4 and 6 hydroxy-estrogen is inflammatory, and also antagonizes remaining progesterone. To reverse estrogen metabolite dominance, weaving in nuts and seeds can support healthy estrogen and progesterone levels. If you are approaching menopause and still have an active cycle, then adding flaxseeds and pumpkin seeds days 1-13 will boost healthy estrogens, then shifting to sesame and sunflower days 14-28 will boost progesterone. After menopause, including all seed types in the diet is beneficial.

Foods high in selenium support the corpus luteum, which is the region of the ovaries where progesterone is formed. Adding four Brazil nuts to the diet will provide enough selenium, or supplementing with 200 mcg per day.

Vitamin B6 also supports the corpus luteum in the ovaries. To build levels, supplement with B6 in the short-term. Then, add in foods rich in vitamin B6, which include turkey, wild-caught tuna and salmon, beef, chicken, pistachios, chickpeas, potatoes, eggs, and dark leafy greens. Adding in 3-4 servings per day of high B6 foods will help sustain healthy levels. Beyond progesterone, B6 also supports serotonin balance and melatonin conversion, promoting sound sleep and balanced mood. Speaking of sleep, getting enough sleep supports neurotransmitter and hormone balance, along with healthy weight. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night.

Herbal medicines can help with menopausal transition and treating symptoms as well. In particular Vitex, or chasteberry, supports progesterone production and decreases symptoms of menopause in clinical trials. Black cohosh and blue cohosh balance estrogen dominance and decrease hot flashes. Raspberry leaf is a gentle tonic that supports the female the reproductive system. Talk with your doctor about an individualized herbal and nutritional approach that works for you.

Focus on healing the GI. If you have a history of GI symptoms and inflammation, soothing the digestive system is a key step in hormone support. Healing the GI is vital to allow for nutrient absorption. Food provides the building blocks for our hormones, neurotransmitters, and tissue health, laying the foundation for overall wellbeing. To heal the GI, avoid fried foods, refined ingredients, excess acidity, and heavily processed foods. Focus on fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, complex grains, and adequate protein (around 60 grams per day). Specific foods that heal digestive function include aloe juice, coconut, cinnamon, turmeric, peppermint and chamomile tea, and probiotic foods like yogurt & kefir.

Get regular exercise. Gentle exercise supports immune system health, metabolism, and healthy weight, which helps balance estrogen and progesterone. Try hiking, light jogging, eliptical machines, swimming, and resistance exercises. For simple home resistance exercises, pick up a theraband for upper and lower body workouts. However, avoid overexercise, as this places stress on the body that decreases pregnenolone and hormone synthesis. Long distance running, Cross-Fit, and intense cycling classes may cause more harm than benefit when dealing with low hormone function.

Natural progesterone cream. While implementing these lifestyle steps, adding in extra hormonal support may be necessary for a short period. Natural progesterone creams containing bio-identical progestins help replenish levels. Monitoring progesterone levels is important once per month to keep progesterone in a healthy level. Long-term, use of progesterone cream is tapered down. Yam and soy based creams are not effective. Taking pregnenolone and DHEA also supports progesterone by providing the building blocks for production.

Xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens

Along with managing hormones in the body, monitoring input of hormones from the environment is also key. Xenoestrogens are synthetic estrogen-like compounds produced in manufacturing. They are commonly found in makeup, packaging, pesticide residue, and plastic products. Certain xenoestrogens act as estrogen-disruptors by blocking or binding estrogen receptors. They have detrimental effects on the immune system, bone health, and the female reproductive system. To avoid xenoestrogens, choose additive-free makeup and bath/body products, organic produce, and glass bottles versus plastic.

Also, taking phytoestrogens has a protective effect. Phytoestrogens are plant-based estrogen-like compounds that occupy receptors and prevent xenoestrogens from binding. Moderate amounts of soy, alfalfa, brassicas, and clover taken in the diet as sprouts, food, and supplements protects the endocrine system.

By working with nutrition, herbal medicine, and lifestyle, it is possible to support the body while transitioning into menopause. This is a natural part of the lifecycle, and in most cases the body’s intelligence knows what to do. When extra support is needed, there are safe and effective treatments available.

Dr. Shawn Morris is a native of Whidbey island where he lives with his wife and son.

Shawn Morris Naturopath Seattle WA

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We created a fragrance that encapsulates the wellbeing we hope our patients can cultivate in their everyday lives. It evokes Essential Oils Seattlegrounding and connection. A touchstone to return you to your best self. At the same time, we wanted something that might ease your relationships and calm the stressors of daily living. A ritual.

 

We chose Frankincense first. Long revered for its physical, spiritual and cosmetic benefits it is sometimes called the King of essential oils. We love the earthy, grounded, feeling this resin creates. It invokes a feeling of reverence. It is powerfully anti inflammatory and can aid in relieving depression.

Next we used Rose for its heart opening properties.  It can be easy to cut ourselves off from connection when we are sick or stressed. This gentle but powerful essence can ease depression and is a tonic for blood. It benefits many women’s’ health issues. It is also a  powerful anti-inflammatory with libido boosting effects.

 

Jasmine is another powerful antidepressant and hormones balancer. It is antispasmodic and a mild sedative to promote relaxation and aid in sleep. Rose and Jasmine are both powerful heart openers that work synergistically together.

 

With the blend infused with scents of deep relaxation we thought we would add another mood and energy booster to balance it out. Bergamot adds a citrusy note that enlivens the blend.

 

As you can see, all the essences chosen have profound health benefits. In addition to those listed above this blend is antiviral and disinfectant. It boosts immune function and soothes skin irritations.

Pick some up today as a Solstice treat for yourself or as a stocking stuffer! Glow Blend Essential OIl Bath Salts RITUALLindsey Lawson SeattleLindsey Lawson MS EAMP is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Clinic Director at Glow Natural Health in Madison Valley and West Seattle and Seattle Fertility Acupuncture. She is passionate about healthy, happy living and a regular blogger. For an appointment call Glow at 206 568 7545.

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Have you noticed the new Therapeutic Gemstone Jewelry at the reception desk at Glow?  Many of the pieces address female health concerns, including fertility, pregnancy, birth and post partum recovery.  One stone you will find in many of these pieces is Unakite, a little known stone used especially for fertility, pregnancy and birth.  Unakite is a type of jasper, olive green and peach color and is found in the Unaka’s mountains in North Carolina, Switzerland and Zimbabwe.  It nourishes both mother and child throughout pregnancy and birth and many doulas like to have some in the roomfertility jewelry seattle for labor and delivery.  If you have any questions about Unakite, or any of the other gems in the jewelry at Glow, feel free to talk with Holly about them.

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Chinese Medicine for pregnancy in Seattle WAPregnancy can be a very fulfilling and sometimes overwhelming time. It gives you an opportunity understand and support the natural creative cycle. Each stage relates to an elemental phase of the Dao. Simple practices can harmonize the natural energies that are working through you and your child at that time. No matter what symptoms you may be feeling, or stressors you may have in your life, it allows you a touch stone to return to your path and support the path of your developing baby.

Mothers instinctively feel the womb to be a connection to another world. According to Daoist thinking, the child is a “shaman” bridging heaven and earth.  It is conceived into the watery “world” of the womb. Pregnancy is a creative cycle with the same phases as life outside the womb. Each month a new type of elemental energy is entering into your child and making him or her who she will become. This phase can be supported with specific foods, activities and treatments. Birth marks the death of the child’s “womb spirit” and entrance into the outside world.

In our modern culture we tend to think of a child’s characteristics as pretty much set after conception. The genes of the mother and father have combined into a new life. It has its own preset destiny of brown hair, brown eyes, tall, short, sweet tempered or hotheaded. We avoid things like alcohol, soft cheeses and hot tubs. The ancient Daoists went much deeper. They observed the seasons and the weather. They understood and documented the natural cycles, including the “elements.” They believed it is important to support these natural phases during pregnancy and minimize anything that might disturb them.

Working with the Dao of Pregnancy supports fetal development and the mother’s health. Through years of working with pregnant woman I have become intimately familiar with each phase and the Elements and actions to balance them. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine offers wonderful options in the office. But my time with patients is short. There is more that can be done at home to harmonize the energies for optimal health in pregnancy and for the health of the child once it is born.

We help you have the happiest and healthiest pregnancy, birth, and baby. Take this precious time to connect with yourself, your baby and the nature cycles you are both experiencing. Make an appointment for acupuncture to support your pregnancy today.

Lindsey Lawson Acupuncture in Seattle WALindsey Lawson MS EAMP is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Clinic Director at Glow Natural Health and Seattle Fertility Acupuncturist. She is passionate about healthy, happy living, food and is a regular blogger.  For an appointment call Glow at 206 568 7545.

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Healthy women in Seattle WAOk, this is going to feel like a foreign concept to many. That’s because it is. But it’s one that has been tested and retested for thousands of years in Chinese physicians, daughters, mothers and grandmothers. It’s simple. Menstruation and childbirth are the most depleting things for a women’s body. This happens on a deep level, a level called jing which relates to genetics, aging, and vitality. Jing has a hormonal and reproductive aspect and also relates to your creative potential. Jing is limited and once it’s gone, it’s gone, and without it women suffer from problems with menses, fertility, menopause, libido and energy.   How can you support your body, prevent the loss of jing and enjoy better vitality?  The answer is menstrual and postpartum recovery practices. These activities help your body conserve and strengthen itself at these crucial transition times. This is one of the true gems I have found in Chinese medicine that can revolutionize the way women treat their bodies.

My grandmother may have been right when she told me that too much exercise would be bad for my ”lady parts.” I thought she was crazy. I played sports and loved them.  But I didn’t have the whole picture and neither did she. It’s not that ALL exercise is bad ALL the time. We know that’s not true. Here’s the key, it’s when and how you’re exercising that matters. Each phase of a women’s life and each phase of her cycle has different needs. Menarche (first menses), childbirth, menopause and after each period are all transition times where great care should be taken to support and protect the body.

Women are fundamentally tied to nature through our menstrual cycle. Just like Spring leads to Summer so does menarche lead to childbearing years and then to menopause. In our modern culture we have lost the connection to the cycles of nature and to our own natural cycles. In the winter, we eat summer time fruits and veggies and stay up late into the darkness of night. The same disconnection from nature leads us to take a spinning class and go to a late party on the third day of a heavy period. There is a time for everything. Listen to your intuition. Reconnect.

What can you do? During your period and post-partum: Rest, limit vigorous exercise, keep yourself warm, eat foods which nourish and replenish. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs are very powerful at this time. Listen to your body.

Lindsey Lawson Acupuncture in Seattle WALindsey Lawson MS EAMP is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Clinic Director at Glow Natural Health and Seattle Fertility Acupuncturist. She is passionate about healthy, happy living, food and is a regular blogger.  For an appointment call Glow at 206 568 7545.

 

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