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.


Yes, it’s tricky to stay healthy living in a toxic world. Our bodies are overwhelmed with chemicals on a level the species (much less the world) has never seen in millennia of our evolution. Our fast-paced lives often prevent the physical, emotional and spiritual releases we need. So often we try to cope with toxins like sugar, caffeine, alcohol, cigarettes, teevee or other drugs, compounding the problem.


The good news is this: Our bodies are wise. Nature literally heals. Mindful choices can mitigate these toxic insults.


I’m not a fan of the heroic detoxes and cleanses that rely on tons of supplements and/or intense fasts. These work against the body, rather than for it. But I do think we can take gentle and effective actions in the spirit of health and building rather than fear and self abnegation. As says Aviva Romm, an herbalist and medical doctor: “Eating simply and redundantly for a couple of weeks can give your body a much-needed sense of rhythm and ease.” 


My thought for many years has been to offer a program that’s about decadence, not deprivation, about pampering rather than punishing. Imagine nurturing yourself after the December holidays instead of torturing yourself! The scientific term for the biochemical process of detoxification is biotransformation. Doesn’t that sound like health to you?


Dr. O, laughing. Photo by Uzi Dann.

Celilo Natural Health Center’s Decadent Detox Program, launching in early 2014, celebrates your beauty and your body’s innate ability to heal. It builds your health rather than trying to scrape off disease like something nasty on your shoe. It empowers you with education about what heals and what harms. It includes spa-like treatments that both relax and energize you — while boosting your immunity and natural biotransformation pathways. You will get simple food guidelines, targeted supplements, and even a series of flower essences and exercises customized to support emotional and spiritual ease. And all of this happens with physician supervision in a small-group setting, so you’ll have engaged partners in the process.


I am building it. Will you come?


As the page turns on another year, may we all live in the place of honoring our bodies, our Earth, our communities and our life purpose. And may your 2014 be filled with joy, laughter, freedom and light!


—Dr. O



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