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…)
Happiness is good for the heart metaphorically, but new research shows it’s true physically as well. Researchers followed 1,700 people for 10 years, and considered their emotional states over that time. Participants rated their anxiety, joy and other emotions on a five-point scale. By the end of the study, researchers determined that each step up on the scale saw a corresponding 22-percent decrease in heart-disease risk. How does it work? Likely because reducing stress, improving sleep and moving on from tough experiences inflicts a lower toll on the physical body. The take-home message is that happiness is an important part of daily self care, just like moderate exercise and eating well. Here’s to happy, healthy hearts!
Bush beans and oregano.
When we learn about Permaculture — or any kind of gardening, for that matter — we often see that certain plants are listed as medicinal. But do you ever wonder what part of the plant to use? When to pick it? What kind of health issues the plant medicine is used for? Would it be handy to get some ideas about this before spring planting?
It’s one thing to know that plants have medicinal functions, but Permaculture education rarely includes the body of knowledge needed to actually make use of plant medicines.
Join the Portland Permaculture Guild at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 15 when herbalist, Permaculture designer and naturopathic physician Orna Izakson will discuss the functions and uses of many garden medicinals. The Garden Medicine slideshow draws from Orna’s extensive study of herbal medicine, with an eye to Permaculture functions and practical ideas for putting the people’s medicines back into the people’s hands.
To learn more about Orna, see GardenMedicine.com or CeliloHealth.com. PPG meetings are held at Pacific Crest Community School at NE 29th and Davis (2 blocks N of Burnside) in Portland, Oregon. The meeting starts at 7pm. Please enter at the North door (Davis), or the door from the parking lot.
December 18, 2009
Photo by Nihan Aydin.
It’s the “most wonderful time of the year” — and depression is rampant. Between the darkness (if you live in the northern hemisphere), family drama and financial stresses, it’s a time when many people find their mood going in an unhappy direction. Here are some tangible tips for feeling better. (more…)
December 1, 2009
Natural advice for staying well this flu season
Originally published in Indian Country Today
By Terri Hansen, Environment, Science & Health Writer
Portland, Ore.—When naturopathic physician Dr. Orna Izakson looks at a plant she sees more than its stem, leaves or vibrant flower – she sees medicine. And naturally, she takes a natural approach to flu prevention and hastening a healthy recovery.
“Our bodies are trying to bring us toward health,” she says. “The responses we experience to outside stressors are our body’s intelligent response to that stressor. A fever is an intelligent response: It makes the body more responsive to invaders… and it makes us feel lousy so we slow down and go to bed so that our bodies can heal.” (more…)