Trees

the three keys to optimal health

At its root, health really isn’t that complicated. Getting and staying health comes down to three simple things — assimilation, elimination and managing inflammation. In this short(ish) video, Dr. Izakson breaks it down and gives you the key to the natural-health kingdom.

 

flower essence training with Dr. Izakson

It’s no secret I’m a plant lover. It’s why I went into medicine.

 

I love that plants reinforce our connection to nature, while helping us navigate the modern world. Nearly every patient I treat gets some kind of plant-based prescription, whether it’s a powdered herb, a tea or an herbal extract such as a tincture or a gemmo.

 

The plant medicines I use most in practice are flower essences. They’re safe and gentle, don’t interfere with any other prescriptions and reliably make big changes in my patients’ well being.

 

Here’s one patient’s testimonial: (more…)

come out and play!

Dr. Izakson has some speaking gigs coming up, and she’d love to meet you.

 

First up, Dr. Izakson is talking about vital living at the Inspiring Woman Leaders Fifth Annual Women’s Leadership Conference on March 5 at the McMenamin’s Kennedy School. The event is even near the office, for those of you who love the Alberta/Concordia neighborhood.

 

One week later, check out the Women in Balance Institute’s Women’s Health Day. Dr. Izakson will be talking about detoxification — with a twist.

 

Both promise to be fun events. We look forward to seeing you there!

 

Oxbow-Oregon-Lifestyle-Head-Shot-WEB-084A5559

 

 

new year’s resolutions: biotransformation in 2014

December 31, 2013

 

Wishing you joy, laughter, freedom and light in 2014.

‘Tis the season to make resolutions. A time to reevaluate our choices, to envision a hopeful future in which we move forward into more perfect lives.

 

Although it hasn’t always been this way, as the Atlantic magazine explains in a Dec. 31 article, many of us make resolutions around our health. If you follow any blogs, Facebook pages or tweets on the subject, this is the time of year when you’ll be overwhelmed with possibilities for a New Year’s cleanse or detox program. You’ll lose weight! You’ll have more energy! That brain fog? Gone!

 

My friend and colleague Dr. Mahalia Freed wrote about this phenomenon on Facebook this time last year. Paraphrased (she said it so much better than I): You are not dirty, you don’t need to cleanse.

 

To which I said — and say again — hallelujah.

 

Health is not about fitting into your high-school prom dress. It’s not about just not being sick. We all have our definitions, but mine, today, is this: Health is enjoying our minds and our bodies, connecting with individuals and community and place, and fully living a life animated with meaning and purpose. (more…)

sunshine vitamin brightens dark winter days

As some of you may know I recently got my first smart phone. and on it there’s now a fun little app called D-Minder, intended to help track your vitamin D exposure. The app looks at your skin tone, size, location, local weather and sun angle to determine how much vitamin D you can get at any given time, or when your next vitamin “D opportunity” is.

 

Today, Nov. 15, the app says “your next D opportunity is in 113 days.”

 

Sunny Arrowleaf Balsamroot (Balsamorhiza sagittata)

Sunny Arrowleaf balsamroot, to remind you of summer.

All of this is a great reminder that at northerly latitudes like Portland’s, the sun’s angle is just too low for natural Vitamin D production for a big chunk of the winter. The D-Minder folks created this video, which gives the clearest explanation I’ve seen of how this works.

 

Why do you care? Vitamin D improves immunity and healthy bone building, protects against cancer and diabetes, regulates blood pressure and balances inflammation that’s thought to be a primary underlying cause of many debilitating chronic diseases. (Oregon State University’s Linus Pauling Institute offers this monograph on Vitamin D.)

 

What to do through the winter? If you can’t get a break to the tropics or the southern hemisphere,  recommend a simple lab test to assess your individual need and then appropriate use of a high-quality Vitamin D3 supplement.

 

(How much Vitamin D is enough? My reading of the research, coupled with clinical experience of myself, my colleagues and my mentors, suggests the U.S.-recommended daily values are too low.  But seriously, testing is the best way to know what’s right for you.)

 

To find out more about Vitamin D, why you need it and whether supplementation is right for you, please call or email us to schedule a time to speak with Dr. O.

 

 

Want to read more on Vitamin D?

The Vitamin D Council website is filled with great information, including options for testing and the best ways to get the Vitamin D you need.  This site was created by one of the doctors who pioneered Vitamin D awareness wave in the U.S.

 

 

how you eat will change your life. period.

This TEDx video has been making the rounds in emails and social media. A lot of these things get tossed your way. And you may have been leery about wasting 17 minutes of your busy time on yet another random video.

 

That’s certainly how I felt. But after seeing glowing recommendations from so many medical colleagues and friends, I got curious. And now I’m recommending — in the strongest terms — that you watch it, too.

 

Real food will change your life.

Seriously.

 

The story here is of an active woman, a medical doctor, who was crippled with Multiple Sclerosis. In MS, a person’s immune system starts attacking the sheathing that protects the nerves. That sheathing (remember the word “myelin” from high school bio?) is like the plastic encasing electrical wires, and does the exact same thing: helps electricity travel through the nerves and prevents shocks in the wrong places. MS is considered an incurable, degenerative disease.

 

The speaker, Dr. Terry Wahls, wasn’t willing to accept that prognosis. Because she’s an MD, she made sure she tried all the drugs, including the experimental ones. When that didn’t work, she started doing her own research. The video outlines her findings, but my patients and followers won’t be surprised — it’s basically the same diet I recommend for nearly everyone.

 

I really want you to watch the video so I’m not going to tell you how dramatically well this worked for Dr. Wahls. But the bottom line for you is this: How you eat changes your life.

 

So watch. Learn. Apply to your own life. You can feel awesome, whether or not you have an autoimmune, degenerative, incurable disease. And if all the competing  food choices have you (justifiably!) confused, give us a call. That’s what we’re here for.

 

 

 

Like videos? We’ve started a YouTube channel of our favorites. Watch for updates!

 

untangling autism

Filed under: chronic disease,Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Orna @ 11:26 pm

Autism is in the news this week after the top-flight medical journal, The Lancet, retracted a pivotal research paper linking autism to vaccine preservative thimerosal. That study has been unsupported by subsequent research and epidemiology, and recently the study’s lead author was discovered to have had financial incentives for his findings. That leaves open the question of what is causing the huge rise in autism diagnoses, which now apply to 1 in 100 children in the US. Crunching the numbers, new research is finding hot spots of autism, suggesting environmental or social factors may be involved.

brain food

Photo by Oktaviani Marvikasari.

Photo by Oktaviani Marvikasari.

You’ve always heard that fish is brain food. Now, a growing body of research is supporting that contention.

 

One study published in the February edition of the Archives of General Psychiatry found that fish-oil supplements high in omega-3 fatty acids warded off psychosis in high-risk teens. Study participants received either fish oil or a placebo for 12 weeks. One year later, more of the fish-oil teens were still psychosis free. Researchers say the results are as good as those seen with antipsychotic medications, with benefits lasting longer than any other intervention. And, unlike typical pharmaceutical prescriptions that cause problems including weight gain and libido loss, fish oils seem to have no major negative side effects.

 

Other studies are finding that omega-3 oils can help the mind stay young and sharp. Earlier reports found that DHA, one specific form of omega-3, helped slow dementia but didn’t help folks with Alzheimer’s disease. A February report in the Journal of Neurochemistry suggests that EPA, another omega-3, may do the trick. The report’s authors believe EPA helps slow the natural decline of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter, helping keep the brain young and boost memory and learning. Both DHA and EPA are typically found in fish-oil supplements in varying ratios.

 

A version of this post originally appeared on Wellwire.com.

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