The services that I list on this site are not intended for diagnostic purposes, but to determine the functional state of health of my patients. Disturbed functional health does not necessarily mean pathology or disease exists. However, I do believe that functional ill-health and a disturbed biochemistry of the body are significant stressors that precipitate a variety of symptoms that can be felt by individuals even when a physician has found “nothing wrong”. Many of these abnormal physiological stress responses are either not observed or ignored in conventional diagnostics, but they are easily observed in the functional evaluation assessments which I offer in my practice. Correcting these, I believe, leads to improved health and wellness in every patient.
The evaluation and assessment tools I use to determine the state of a patient’s health are designed to support my philosophy of health and healing. So let me be more specific and outline what my philosophy of health and healing really is. I will list it point by point in no particular order.
The body always wants to heal and the body does all the healing. The body may always want to heal, but we often find the body burdened by the wrong kinds of foods, or by toxic chemicals and toxic metals, pesticides and even by harmful attitudes and wrong thinking. The body wants to rid itself of this toxic accumulation and changes may be needed in one’s thinking and one’s attitude for that to fully take place. We must work in cooperation with the healing power God has put in our bodies and never against it.
The body truly does all the healing. Vitamins, herbs, minerals, etc are all important, but they don’t heal. The body needs some things removed and it needs healing support from nutrition, homeopathics, herbs etc. When both of these take place, the body has a much greater chance to return to the state it was originally intended to enjoy.
No one diet or supplement program fits all. I don’t have a one diet fits all program, but I do find that when looking at all the chronic degenerative diseases, there is one underlying issue presenting itself and that is inflammation. And I do give my patients dietary guidelines designed to address the underlying inflammatory state that is found in so many individuals. (See article The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Supplement Support ) This inflammatory state is predominately driven by chronic infections, our wrong diets, toxins like pesticides, toxic metals etc and allergies and sensitivities to foods and environmentals. Indeed the cause of most diseases is usually multi-factorial, all of which need addressing.
I grew up being a vegetarian. Many years later after finding myself anemic and always wondering why I was so weak, I changed to add meats to my diet and found I was definitely benefiting from the change. Unfortunately some have chosen their diets not based on what is ideal for them, but often on what someone else found to work and was convinced it would work for the rest of the world as well. So I will often tell some patients, “You can eat your meat and potatoes, but you have to be willing to pay the price”. And to others I may also say, “You can be a vegetarian, but you may have to be willing to pay the price”.…because if we eat against our metabolic type there will be a price to be paid – not necessarily in the short run, but always in the long run. My price was anemia and chronic weakness, others may actually be much worse.
Biochemical Individuality. Two individuals may have the same disease but they may certainly not have the same altered biochemistry and may need to be treated differently. The idea of our biochemical individuality or uniqueness started with the world-renowned biochemist, Roger Williams, Ph.D, who first published his Biochemical Individuality in 1956. Because we all respond differently to our environment, we have differing nutritional needs for optimal function and Dr. Williams was to first to propose this concept. He was also the first to propose that our nutritional status may influence the expression of genetic characteristics. It took a number of years for science to catch up with this hypothesis and recognize it as true (see number 4 below).
Because this concept is so absolutely true, two individuals eating the same diet may predispose one to get diabetes and the other heartburn. One individual may have a very high need for Vitamin B12 and another gets by with a normal amount. Siblings born into a family with a history of depression, one of them has a very high need for neurotransmitters to make his/her brain work well and the other get by with much less. Every person is biochemically unique and needs to be treated as such.
We are not pre-programmed by our genes toward disease. For many it is indeed wonderful news that we are not stuck with our family’s genes. Just because a problem like diabetes runs in one’s family, it does not mean they are helpless and without hope. We are in fact the caretaker of our genetic roadmap and it is what we do, what we eat and how we think that determines the genetic expression of disease.
Epigenetics are the environmental control switches that turn our genes off or on. Our epigenome (the cellular material sitting on top of the genes) interacts with our environment on a daily basis. It is the environmental chemicals, toxins or beneficial nutrients that influence the epigenome to turn the gene off or on. But this is equally true with our thoughts and beliefs as Dr. Bruce Lipton has so eloquently shown in his book, The Biology of Belief. So the Science of Epigenetics is clear, our genetics are not static but quite dynamic and changes daily, perhaps hourly by our epigenetic coding which in turn is completely influenced by the foods we eat, the air we breathe, what we drink and the thoughts we think.
We are physical, mental and spiritual beings. There is no path to good health that does not recognize all components of our being. When we are mentally stressed and provide no time for mental relaxation and enjoyment we cannot be healthy. A lack of physical activity, especially when available in fresh air and exposing our skin to sunlight, is vital to our health. Equally, individuals who never feed their spiritual souls will have a level of health that can never be to the level it would have, had they provided for their spiritual needs.
As a Christian, I believe we were divinely created to worship. And worship we will. If we will not spend time with and worship God, we will worship something – sports, money, sex, drugs, work, etc. None of these are ultimately satisfying and as a result we continually want more, but regardless, it is never enough to satisfy. God asks us in the Holy Book, why we have forsaken Him as living water and dug for ourselves broken cisterns that hold no water. And it is a good question. But regardless of one’s belief system, I treat all equally and with respect and never force my beliefs on any patient.
Our bodies tend toward disrepair, it takes energy to repair. Our bodies are simply obeying the second law of thermodynamics and in a state of continual decline…but we were so created, that there is continual effort to repair, replace and restore. To accomplish this requires effort… effort by the body and effort by every individual to eat properly, add the correct nutrients for the working needs of our cells and cellular processing, adequate water, fresh air, sunshine, as well as a right mental attitude. Unless this type of effort is put into our bodies, they will generally decline at a faster than normal rate. An old Chinese proverb states, “Take time for health or be forced to take time for disease.” Unfortunately many individuals had no time for their health and they spent their health attempting to gain wealth; then in an attempt to turn it around, they spent their wealth attempting to regain their health. Little did they realize that good health is the best wealth.
We have flooded our environment with toxic chemicals and every person on the planet has heavy metals, like mercury, lead, arsenic, pesticides, and industrial chemicals like dioxins, PCBs, and flame-retardants. We are bathed in electromagnetic fields from computers, cell phones, TVs, refrigerators etc. It takes effort and energy to protect us from these or to remove them from our bodies. Leave them in your body at your own peril. They are doing us no good.
We must identify and address the precipitating causes and the underlying factors to our problems. In nearly every problem I see, patients have a precipitating cause or event and then beneath that are underlying factors that lay the foundation for the precipitating event. Many individuals with headaches may find the precipitating cause to be food sensitivities but the underlying factor is a disturbed intestinal tract. A child with ADD or an adult with depression may likely find that insufficient neurotransmitters for their needs is a cause of their problem. But the underlying factors will likely include inadequate essential fatty acids, B vitamins and specific minerals for the proper function of the neurotransmitters and the brain to perform their proper function. So to help patients the most, I want to know what causes the problem and what is driving the problem. This way I can maximize their health. But we can pretty much conclude that heartburn is not a deficiency of Nexium and depression is not a deficiency of Prozac. If that is true and it is, then we need to find the factors behind these problems.
In my work I am more of a teacher than a healer. As I said previously, the body does all the healing. I most want to direct patients to see themselves as students of their health. I want to facilitate them in their quest to not just get well, but to stay well; and that, for the most part, takes knowledge. If we can together, discover what their body has too much of and remove it, and what it has need of and add it, we begin the process toward wellness. But it is a life-long process of learning and adapting to the changing environmental situations of each person.
Health care has previously been described as one of two metaphors. Western medicine views the body much like a mechanic. Diseased or dysfunctional parts are patched or removed and replaced. There is a little effort to train the owner to get regular oil changes and proper gas etc., but not much. Naturopathic medicine and most of Oriental medicine views the body more like a farmer (at least the old time farmer) views his soil. He builds his soil with nutrients and healthy fertilizers; he makes sure it gets proper hydration and sunlight and he cultivates it regularly. It takes time but he does his work well and he is rewarded with healthy crops. It reminds us of another great old proverb, “Diet takes better care of you than a scalpel”, and it almost always will. So each person is ultimately responsible for their own healing journey. I can only facilitate, as a teacher, to prod you on toward better health. But in doing so, my objective is to empower each patient to reclaim their health and then be rewarded with a better, happier life.