Natural Weight Loss Tips from Pohala Clinic in Portland, Oregon

Healthy eating is a big part of any medical health plan. At Pohala Clinic, we know that weight loss is not easy, but we also know from working with thousands of clients throughout the years that certain practices do work. We asked each staff member at Pohala for a natural Weight Loss tip. We hope this helps you get started on a plan you can use for life, if weight management is a goal. The answers are as diverse as our practitioners!

 

From Julie Foster, Family Nurse Practitioner

I am not a fan of the term “Weight Loss.”  What are we losing? Where does the weight go?

I would rather ask,  ‘What can we gain by having a healthy relationship with our body, mind, and spirit?’

I encourage my patients to examine their relationship with food when exploring the idea of  a healthy body.

If we are at peace with ALL aspects of our life and we structure our days with balanced,  whole plant based foods,  we can find a natural weight that suits us.

I say this to my clients: When you crave certain foods ask yourself, ‘What am I really craving? Maybe you just need to let down, cover up, or escape something and you use food to do this. Believe me it happens for most of us.  I heard a patient tell me ‘I eat my emotions’ and another say ‘I avoid eating to control my emotions.’  We cannot use food one way or the other. Food is food. It fuels us. Period.

How can we become neutral and lighthearted about food? When I work with patients about weight loss I avoid making weight loss the goal and instead encourage patients to take a path of self discovery. Once a person can see the patterns in his or her life that are a hinderance to becoming one’s best self,  healing begins.

The rest falls into place. Then, education about nutrition can be properly applied and digested (literally).

From Malia Susee, Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist…

Support the Spleen and get good sleep!

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Spleen (I’m capitalizing it to differentiate it from our biomedically-viewed organ) is responsible for the transformation food to chi, (Qi), or useable energy, and the transportation of it this useable energy to the rest of the body. Good sleep supports a healthy metabolism, whereas sleep deprivation throws off the metabolism causes us to crave sugar. Overdoing carbohydrates and sugar causes the Spleen to get bogged down and inefficient, leading to even more carb cravings and potentially less good sleep! Prioritizing healthy sleep not only helps us use the calories we have, but helps keep unhealthy cravings at bay.

 

Vera Voss

Vera Vos, Family Nurse Practitioner

When your gut is happy, you are happy! Your gut is inhabited by gazillions of microorganisms like bacteria, viruses, protozoa and others that have a huge influence on your health and, as more and more research is showing, your happiness and weight! The kind of food you eat feeds those microorganisms and the ones that like the sugar, processed foods, bad fats, etc of the Standard American Diet (SAD) cause chronic disease, mental health issues, obesity, brain fog, fatigue, etc.

The ones that make you happy, healthy and slimmer, your allies and friends have a huge preference  for high fiber stuff like vegetables (cooked and raw), fruits, legumes, nuts/seeds, healthy whole grains (quinoa, farro, bulgur, teff, etc), fermented foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kefir, tempeh, etc) and prebiotic foods like onions, garlic and jicama. Say Bon Appetit! to your microorganisms and start including each of these food categories into your diet every day to greatly increase your allies and friends which will heal your gut and body, make you happy and motivated, and support weight loss. 

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We want you to feel supported at Pohala. Our clinicians are here to listen and help. We will come up with a weight loss, healthy eating and life balanced plan that fits into your life. If eating disorder help is needed, we have specialists who can help directly and connect you with outside services.

 

Please call our clinic to work with one of our health care professionals to create a plan for a healthy body.

Healthy Eating Strategies for Good Digestion from Paresh Shelat in Portland, Oregon

Healthy Eating Strategies for Good Digestion from Paresh Shelat, Pohala Clinic Naturopathic Physician and Acupuncturist. 
Food Hygiene: Have you ever wondered why the exact same meal, eaten at different periods of time, can cause a wide range of symptoms or no symptoms at all? 🤔 Unbeknownst to many, the state of our nervous system may directly impact our ability to digest and process food (ie Fight-Flight-Fright vs REST & DIGEST). One of the most important pieces of information I pass on to my patients revolves around the process of eating. This may be more important than the types of foods my patients consume at times.⁣

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Here are several lifestyle modifications to improve digestion WITHOUT medications or supplements 💊:⁣

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1.) Chew food in its entirety. (If that means chewing each bite of food 30 times until it turns to mush, DO IT! Or at least try).⁣

2.) Do not eat “on-the-go” or when you’re in a rush. (Your body will not properly digest food).🚗💨

3.) Eliminate or limit external stressors while consuming food (ie t.v, noisy environment, arguments or tense discussions etc).🗣🖥

4.) Try your best to cook your own food and add different spices that stimulate and prepare your body for digestion such as cumin, mustard seeds, and rosemary. 👨🏾‍🍳

5.) Apple cider vinegar before meals may aid in digestion.
To book an appointment with Dr. Shelat, please call the Pohala Clinic.

 

How Can Cinnamon Help with Warming the Body During Portland’s Rainy Season?

 

Malia Susee Acupuncturist tells us about Cinnamon:

Cinnamon v. Cinnamon

It’s cold and wet outside. I’ve been recommending cinnamon a lot these days. I have also been noticing that the internet has not been giving cassia, the cinnamon commonly grown in Vietnam and China, a fair shake.

Ceylon cinnamon, that which is grown in Sri Lanka, is touted as the truer, healthier stuff, but let’s not bark up the wrong tree (pun absolutely intended); While both are warming herbs, Ceylon cinnamon twig (a.k.a. Guì Zhī) and Cassia bark (a.k.a. Roù Guì) have different functions in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Guì Zhī (Ceylon twig) helps fight the common cold by harmonizing our nutritive and defensive chi (qi) (guiding nutrients to our immune system) and by unlocking/unblocking the chi /qi in the chest and lungs (great for lung tightness and congestion). Used as an analgesic for menstrual cramps and for joint painexacerbated by cold, wet weather, guì zhī promotes blood circulation by “warming the vessels” and by “dispersing cold and damp” Bensky, D. and Gamble, A. (1993) Chinese Herbal Medicine Materia Medica: Revised Edition. Seattle, WA: Eastland Press, Inc..

Roù Guì (Cassia bark) warms at a deeper, more basic level. We use this when depletion, reduced appetite, frequent urination, and /or deep aversion to cold are present. Roù Guì also helps with chronic wheezing due to deficiency; conditions that present with sensation of heat in the upper body, but cold below; and diarrhea due to deficiency (see Bensky and Gamble, 1993).

Cinnamon is most effective when combined with synergistic food or herbs and best to avoid in cases of severe yin deficiency. I’ll write about yin deficiency soon in conjunction with menopausal symptoms, but if you’re wondering how best to incorporate cinnamon in your diet, read this relatively even-handed article I found:

https://www.organiclifestylemagazine.com/cinnamon-ceylon-vs…

…and consult your local acupuncturist!

Call (503) 572-4196 to schedule an appointment with
Malia Susee, L.Ac. at Pohala.

Stay warm! 🏺🏺♨️🌅

 

Healthy Books for 2019 from Vera Vos, Nurse Practitioner

by Vera Vos

I love to start the New Year with a list of books I want to read. There are so many genres to choose from not to mention fiction or non-fiction. For the most part,  I’m not particular whether a book was written recently or if it’s an old classic. But, when it comes to health related topics, I like to see what’s new in non-fiction. My favorite health sub topics are those that offer insights that can change health for the better and slow aging especially using cutting edge nutrition research. I also like those that describe the latest breakthroughs for healing chronic disease like heart disease, cancer, autoimmune disorders and mental health. 

I find new books I want to read by relying on others whom I trust to make recommendations. The Food Revolution Network is one website that I keep track of. It was started by John Robbins of Baskin Robbins fame, who left the ice cream business to focus on health and sustainability for ourselves and our environment. He is the author of numerous old classics like Diet for a New America and The Food Revolution. 

Luckily,  the Food Revolution Network has a list of 8 “must read” books about health for 2019.

Check them out and see if you find one or two that sparks your interest. 

Some of the books include:

Undo It!: How Simple Lifestyle Changes Can Reverse Most Chronic Diseases by Dean Ornish, MD and Anne Ornish

The Truth About Food: Why Pandas Eat Bamboo and People Get Bamboozled by David Katz, MD

Happy reading! 

Vera

 

Holistic Primary Care: Why does Chicken Soup heal Us? Malia Susee, Acupuncturist in Portland, Oregon

Have you ever thought why Chicken Soup is helpful during a cold or flu? It is more than an old wives tale.

You’ve already fought the cold…and lost. Why would chicken soup help now?

Traditional Chinese Medicine concepts and Cold/Flus:

Traditional Chinese Medicine sees cold and flu viruses as externally contracted “wind invasions,” fought by our Wei, Qi (our body’s protection and defense). Our immune system often elevates our temperature and create mucous to fight viral infection. Fighting makes us tired. We know rest and sleep help us heal. Chicken soup’s ingredients actually speed the healing process.

Healing Properties of Chicken Soup:

You may ask ‘So, what’s in the pot?’

  1. Chicken: In Traditional Chinese Medicine, chicken tonifies, or strengthens, chi (a.k.a. Qi, our vital energy). We lose Qi while fighting viruses. Chicken builds it back!

2.  Water: We also get dehydrated by fever; soup contains the clear fluids we need to replenish our stores and help our bodies flush out metabolic waste.

3.  Salt: In TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) theory, salt “softens masses” and therefore, helps thin phlegm. Salt also helps replenish any electrolytes lost while fighting the initial stages of viral infections. Salt also encourages us to drink more water.

4.  Vegetables: Vegetables such as carrots, celery, and onions, provide nutrients our bodies need in an easy-to-digest manner, as they’re fully cooked in the soup! Vegetable fiber, along with salt, and plenty of water, help our bowels efficiently remove waste. In TCM theory, a well-functioning gut makes the body less hospitable to viral and bacterial infections.

Here are some Super-powered soup additions to tailor your healing process:

 5. Fresh Ginger: Fresh ginger releases the exterior (helps fight in early stages) and: disperses cold, strengthens defensive Qi, alleviates vomiting, stops coughing, and transforms phlegm.

6. Citrus peel: Moves Qi in the digestive tract (helping alleviate gas, bloating, and belching) and transforms phlegm.

7. Cinnamon: Releases the exterior and fights chest congestion and cough.

8. Fresh Scallion: Fights early-stage viruses by inducing sweating. Opens nasal passages blocked by cold.

Knowledge is power. This is primary care. So now that you know this, you and your family can better understand why healing through integrative family medicine, naturopathy, are chinese medicine /acupuncture are just basic common sense.

For more help in kicking the cold and flu, schedule an appointment with Malia Susee, L.Ac.. Call (503) 572-4196 today!

What is Greenwashing? from Vera Vos Family Nurse Practitioner in Portland, Oregon

At Pohala we pride ourselves in helping our patients be savvy consumers for their health.

We all know what brainwashing is, right? But have you ever heard of greenwashing?

Greenwashing is a deceptive marketing technique used to make consumers think a product is healthy, environmentally friendly and sustainable.

Regarding nutrition, companies have figured out that healthy food is good for business. Unfortunately, they have also learned that greenwashing, making consumers think it’s healthy is just as beneficial for the bottom line.

The article from The Food Revolution Network explains how to avoid being scammed by “greenwashing”.

Schedule an appointment with Vera Vos FNP to learn more about choosing healthy options for your lifestyle and nutrition.

Call (503) 572-4196

Nutritional Cleanse with Nurse Practitioners, Vera Vos and Julie Foster in Portland, Oregon

 

Would you like to get in sync with your body’s natural rhythms?

All the way back to ancient times whether by circumstance or choice it is intuitively right for us to cleanse twice a year, Spring or Fall.

Cleansing will increase your energy, reduce inflammation and improve your overall health? Join us on March 13th 2019 and learn more about using a whole foods cleanse to increase vitality and help the body naturally heal. Cleanses help us with countless health complaints such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, anxiety and brain fog.

Join Pohala’s Integrative Nurse Practitioners, Julie Foster NP and Vera Vos NP to discover how a nutritional cleanse program can help you get back on a path to health. They will discuss the benefits of a whole foods cleanse, explain the process and answer your questions.

Is a Cleanse Right for You?

If you want more energy, would like to improve your blood sugar, reduce belly fat, reduce the need for cholesterol and blood pressure medications or simply want to see how a change in diet can benefit your life, a cleanse is a good place to start.

Common benefits/side effects of our cleanse programs include:

– Weight loss
– Improved elimination and sleep
– Improved blood work (especially lipid profiles and blood pressure)
– Decreased aches, pains, and inflammation
– Healthier and better looking skin
– More energy

Julie & Vera can also answer your questions on how a whole foods cleanse compares to Whole 30, Paleo, a ketogenic diet, intermittent fasting and plant based diets.

When: Wednesday, March 13th, 2019
Time: 6-7p
Location: Pohala Clinic/Portland, Oregon
Cost: Free and registration is required as space is limited.
503-572-4196

We hope you can join us and start the journey towards a healthy and energetic body in 2019 and beyond.

Julie and Vera combine many years of experience of Nutrition and Lifestyle education. Come hear their personal stories of nutritional cleansing applying safe, natural methods to increase health and vitality. Our methods are non surgical and are drug free.

Please email aleena@pohalaclinic.com or call Pohala (503) 572-4196 today to reserve a space for yourself. Feel free to bring a friend.

Mahalo,

Pohala- A Place of Healing

The Creatures that Live in Our Bodies from Vera Vos, Family Nurse Practitioner

Vera Voss

by Vera Vos

One of the most fascinating and significant biological discoveries of this century is that we are not alone in our bodies.

Human bodies are made up of approximately 37.2 trillion cells. There is an estimated 100 trillion microorganisms (single celled creatures) that live on and within us, about 3 times more cells than our own bodies! Whole ecosystems of microorganisms live in every part of our body – skin, brain, liver, lungs, etc. The ecosystem that gets most talked about is our gut microbiome (the collection of microorganisms that inhabit our gut), which when all dumped together on a scale weighs about 2 Kg and consists of at least 1,000 species of bacteria, not to mention viruses, fungi, protozoa and archaea. Two thirds of our gut microbiome is unique to us as an individual, like our finger print.

Why is this such a big deal? We still have lots to learn but all the microorganisms in our body and, maybe, especially our gut microbiome have a huge influence on our health. They are major contributors to digestion and largely responsible for extracting nutrients from food. They spearhead the production of certain vitamins like B and K and play a major role in immune function. The surprising thing is how much influence they have on today’s most common disease processes.

Due to changes in our food supply and other factors, certain strains of microorganisms are increasingly common in the human gut and may be associated with weight gain and obesity, cancers, autoimmune disorders, and mental health, especially depression, anxiety and autism.

Considering obesity is associated with increased risk for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, some cancers, arthritits, and many other chronic diseases, the unique make-up of our own gut microbiome is very significant to our health.

So how do we maximize the health of our gut microbiome, and, coincidentally our own health? Obviously eating a healthy diet is most important. I recommend 70-80% or more of our diet be whole plants – vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains. Buying organic, local and seasonal or growing your own is probably best and adding lots of fresh herbs and spices, wild mushrooms and fermented foods creates a favorable gut environment for healthy microbes. There are more non-gluten grains available than ever before and sprouted, organic wheat products may be tolerable for those sensitive to wheat gluten.

If you would like to learn a whole lot more about how our microbiome influences our health and how to cultivate a microbiome that helps us thrive, check out the program below:

Click here to watch a video on how we are interconnected and the power we have to heal from within.

Please call our Pohala office if you would like to make an appointment to talk about gut health.

Vera

Food and the Sacred by Julie Foster, Nurse Practitioner at Pohala Clinic

 

🍎FOOD and the SACRED🍑

 

The HUMAN of the future will approach plants that are of use to them consciously; not as now when one reflects on what yields the best substances for one’s body; one will then have a vital relationship to every plant, for they will know what it is has absorbed, and what passes from food to them. Eating will not be to one as a means occupation, but an act consummated with SOUL and SPIRIT for one will know that everything they eat is the external form of something SPIRITUAL 💮

In our immediate age, when HUMANS know little about the vital inward relations between themselves and the world, all kinds of substitutes are made use of. Why have the Initiates of all ages urged people to say grace before eating? The grace should be a token of the recognition that, together with the food, something SPIRITUAL enters into HUMAN.

Rudolf Steiner – GA 105 –Universe, Earth and Man – Lecture III – Stuttgart, 6th August 1908

(I changed  the gender pronoun MAN to HUMAN- as Steiner meant this with his original use of the word man.)

Portland, Oregon Acupuncturist Malia Susee Answers Your Questions about Acupuncture

Malia Susee Portland, Oregon Acupuncture

Portland, Oregon Acupuncturist Malia Susee answers your questions about her practice:

 

What is in your life personally that helps you have a better understanding of your clients?

I don’t have a personal superpower or ace-in-the-hole for understanding others. I’m curious, though, and fascinated by what folks have to say about their health. I’ve traveled a lot and worked with all kinds of people, and I try to put myself in other people’s shoes (figuratively speaking. Don’t worry– I’ll leave your footwear alone when you’re on my table.) The cool thing about Traditional Chinese Medicine is that it doesn’t judge, and that it doesn’t separate mind from body. It supplies an elegant framework for understanding people and dis-ease, and I find that quite helpful.

 

What is your view on western medicine (allopathic)  v. eastern (naturopathic) medicine?

 Naturopathic medicine’s roots are European (Western). Acupuncture’s roots are Chinese (officially referred to as “Oriental” [Oriental describing a thing, not a person], as in Oriental Medicine, of which Traditional Chinese Medicine is a subset). Oriental medicine is holistic in nature and is an excellent complement to naturopathic and allopathic medicine. I am grateful to have all of these modalities as options for our healing and feel privileged to work with practitioners of each.