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Entries in the ‘Naturopathic Medicine’ Category

March 28th, 2010

Meditation on the Subway?

Meditation on the Subway

I travel a lot and I have time to think when I am sitting, and waiting to get where I am going.

In this world where stress and timelines seem to be in the driver’s seat of our life experiences, it occurs to me that we have to find ways to find centeredness and mindfulness “on the go”.

Stress goes hand in hand with cancer.  Why do I say this?  What do the studies show?  What is it about your biology that leads you from chronic stress to cancer?  How can you find release from stress in the midst, in the very center of LIFE?

So…Stress and Cancer…this is what we DO know:

  1. Stress dampens certain portions of the immune system that are surveillance “police” within your system that find and act to destroy cancerous cells.
  2. Stress encourages the over-production of Cortisol.  Cortisol acts to slow inflammatory responses by the body.  When we have a cell that is cancerous we actually NEED inflammation to kill off the rogue cells.  Chronically high levels of cortisol prevent the destruction of cancerous cells.
  3. Stress creates internal tensions that can create truly toxic beliefs about your self, your family and the community at large.

How do we deal with this?  Our lives are busy.  Our lives are full of expectations and responsibilities.

I have not entirely found a way to get out of my responsibilities, have you?

Since I cannot stop the pace I am going on most days, then I would like to suggest that there are steps one can take to find ways to “de-stress” while you live your life.

Be where you are.  Often my stress is due to forward or backwards “projection”.  Do you find that you are not “present” right now, where you are?  Are you thinking about regrets?  Or, are you worried about what will happen tomorrow?  When you feel stressed, take ten seconds to mentally “come back to now”.  Breathe intentionally –note your breath coming in and out.  Become aware of the fact that right now, you are alive, you are breathing, and you are okay.  Be present as much as possible today.
Meditate “on the subway” of your life.  I spend a lot of time in New York City and I take the F Train from Brooklyn to Manhattan.  The trip is around 35 minutes or so.  Sometimes I read, but, just as often I actually meditate.  Meditate on the subway??  Yes, actually, I find it quite rewarding.  I mean, I suppose anyone could meditate in a totally quiet, peaceful yoga studio in the woods next to a gently bubbling creek…right?  But what about the rest of your life?  What about the people that really don’t have the luxury of going to the yoga studio because they are working two jobs?

Meditation shouldn’t be a class-oriented privilege.  Just because your life is not filled with hours that you can relax and “go to meditate” somewhere doesn’t mean that you, too can’t bring meditation into your life in a meaningful way.  Here is how I do it:

  1. No matter what is going on around you, take a 2-minute-“vacation”.  I owe this thought to E. Martene Craig, a wonderful musical director and friend. Close your eyes, if you can, breathe in and out several times, really pay attention to the breath coming into your lungs and then how the air goes back out.  Direct your thoughts to a place or time when you really were relaxed, or having a wonderful time.  Be in that place for a minute, then come back and keep going in your day.
  2. On “the subway” I use the same techniques you will hear in yoga class.  Focus on your breathing, in and out, let your mind be blank — don’t concentrate on anything.  When a thought or a sound comes into your mind, notice that you have a thought, then let it go with no judgement on yourself.  Return to your breath awareness and your mental freedom.  On the subway there are constant noises, movements and a cacophony of interruptions.  I breathe, I let my mind go in and out of focus and I find that when I arrive at my destination I have a greater capacity for life, for work, for openness to the world around me.
  3. When you can, DO find an exercise class, or yoga teacher, or attend church and sing and worship, or go for a walk in a park.  Busy lives are enriched and made more efficacious when there are breaks and pauses.

Be well.  Breathe. Be PRESENT. Do good work.  Repeat.

Can I work with you to help you be cancer-free?  Contact me and let’s see what is going on in your life.

January 6th, 2009

Happy New Year! Time for a Cleanse???

Wow…where did the time go!? It is already into January. I hope your holidays were filled with happy times with those you enjoy.

If you are like me, you may have over-indulged during the holidays.

I hope you will join me as I clean up my act. I’m going to do a month-long detox program and I’d like you to join me. We will meet as a group on three Saturday mornings (from 10-11 a.m. on Jan 24, 31 and Feb 7). I will teach you a bit about safe detoxification and cleansing and will provide you with a whole body detox kit to help you be a “less toxic” you in 2009.

If that sounds like something you could use, give me a call. All three sessions and the detox kit are only $145. This is a discount of over 1/2 the cost.

Here’s to a healthy, vibrant 2009! Let’s get started!

Jeanne Galloway, ND

May 24th, 2008

Cancer patients can benefit from L-Carnitine

L-Carnitine, a supplement that is commonly sold in the U.S. to increase energy and to help build muscles in weight lifters has been shown to decrease fatigue in cancer patients treated with chemo agents Cisplatin and Ifosfamide.  50 patients received 4 grams of L-Carnitine a day for seven days.  At the end of this time 45 of these patients reported less fatigue.  The effect of just seven days of L-Carnitine lasted in these patients until their next round of chemo. (Grazino, et al., British Journal of Cancer, 2002.)

Studies have shown that many advanced cancer patients are actually deficient in L-Carnitine.  (Cruciani, et al, Journal of Pain Symptom Management, 2006)

L-Carnitine can help reduce sleeplessness, fatigue and depression in cancer patients.

The recommended dose is 4 grams a day.

As with all the content on my blog I am hoping to be very clear.  Nothing written here is to be taken as a prescription, or a promise of cure.  These studies provide clues to how L-Carnitine may help the cancer patient, however, you must work directly with a medical school trained Naturopathic Physician or other medical practitioner before using any herbal or other supplemental program, especially if you are on chemo or radiation.  You are welcome to contact me for additional info.

May 24th, 2008

Naturopathic Doctors lead the charge

ND’s from around the nation converged upon Washington DC in May to talk with Senators and Representatives about some issues of great importance to the wellness and healthcare of our nation.

One issue of great importance is the need to shift our current medical system from a disease based model to a wellness based system.

MDs primarily are looking for diseases. Of course, this is useful, but how much better if every American were being evaluated for their wellness status?

NDs are the only doctoral-level medical specialists that are trained to listen to patients, put together a comprehensive view of their current wellness and develop a plan that allows the patient to take charge of their health by creating an environment that improves body, mind and spirit.

NDs put forth a proposal in DC to support what is called a ‘concurrent resolution’ that says we need to move the nation’s medical focus toward wellness. More insurance plans will not solve our crisis. More doctors will not necessarily solve our dilemma. Having doctors that listen, who work to discover the underlying cause of disease, and who then focus on wellness for patients is the key to making a system that truly promotes a healthier America.

Get on the phone and contact your representative today and tell them that you want them to work with the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) to work toward a healthier America. You can also email or call me to get involved.

Be WELL!