Monday, March 30, 2009

Help me help you!

In response to the demands of its members over the years to modernize the naturopathic formulary, the Oregon Association of Naturopathic Physicians has been working with Senator Laurie Monnes-Anderson (D-Gresham) on a bill that would allow naturopathic physicians the authority to prescribe all pharmaceuticals that would typically be used in a primary care setting.

The bill would maintain the Oregon Board of Naturopathic Examiner's oversight of the formulary, but would allow the Formulary Council to consider adding synthetic pharmaceuticals to the formulary.

SB 327 is poised to be voted on in the Oregon State Senate, and we need your help to make sure that it receives a resounding majority of votes!

Please write your state senator here.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

World TB Day is March 24

Tuberculosis (TB) is still a devastating infection. In the US we tend to think of TB as a disease of the past. "Consumption" is something from the old west, or Moulin Rouge. However, tuberculosis is still a deadly threat to the world.
  • 1/3 of the world's population is infected with TB
  • TB is a worldwide leading killer of women
  • 1 person dies from TB every 20 seconds
  • TB is the leading killer of people infected with HIV
  • 90% of people who test positive for HIV will die within months of contracting TB, if not properly treated
  • the drug regimen for treating standard TB in the developing world is only $20 per patient!
Treating TB takes a long time. People need to be able to afford to continue treatment, so drug resistant strains are not created. It will take the global community working together to prevent the spread of TB.

Tuberculosis is often spread through the air. It can occur in many parts of the body, but classically occurs in the lungs. Symptoms include:
  • night sweats
  • chest pain
  • coughing up blood
  • fatigue
  • unexplained weight loss
  • loss of appetite
  • chills
  • fever
  • cough lasting longer than 3 weeks
If you have any of these symptoms, or have possibly been exposed to TB please get tested! Testing is a simple process that involves injecting a small amount of fluid into your skin. It is much less painful than a blood draw. Since TB can be easily spread, please get tested as soon as you suspect you may be infected. Early detection and treatment are key ways to preventing the spread of TB.

I urge you to learn more about TB by visiting and

Friday, March 13, 2009

Help a New Family

As a community, we should be supportive of breastfeeding mothers. Especially in the early days after a birth, providing food to the new family is a wonderful gift. However, always check with the family for food preferences.

Some common foods that many breastfeeding mothers avoid are cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, etc) and chocolate. These foods are often avoided because they may contribute to colic. I recently had someone tell me that this is an old wives tale; women have known this wisdom for centuries, and it is true. There are several journal articles that support these ties. You can read more about foods associated with colic in:
  • "Primary Care from Infancy to Adolescence" Pediatric Clinics of North America - Volume 54, Issue 6 (December 2007)
  • Lust K.D., Brown J.E., Thomas W.: "Maternal intake of cruciferous vegetables and other foods and colic symptoms in exclusively breast-fed infants." J Am Diet Assoc 96. 46-48.1996
  • Cambria S., et al: "Hyperexcitability syndrome in a newborn infant of chocoholic mother." Am J Perinatol 23. 421-422.2006
Please support new families. Preparing a simple meal, or doing a load of laundry, can be an amazing gift to a new family. Simple gifts have great value, and so does the knowledge of our foremothers.

If you have questions about breastfeeding please contact your local La Leche League. For those of you in La Grande, our chapter is currently inactive. However, I am currently in the process of becoming a LLL leader. Hopefully, our chapter will be active in the near future.

I am available to consult with breastfeeding mothers about any questions they may have. Please feel free to call Golden Leaf Clinic at 541-663-6962.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Beautiful Cervix

Its important for people to understand their own body. Everyone is unique, and doctors rely on people knowing when something is abnormal in themselves. Most people are familiar with their own body by virtue of living in it. However, their is one body part that most women know about, but have never seen.

A woman's cervix is often a familiar, yet mysterious part. Most women go through their lives without seeing what a cervix actually looks like. All of my patients are given the option to view their own cervix during a speculum exam. Its really amazing to watch the face of a woman as she sees her cervix for the time. There is a sense of connection and ownership, no longer is her cervix a mysterious part "down there."

I encourage women to ask their doctors about viewing their cervix. Until you have the opportunity to view your own, I've found the second best thing. A young woman has posted photos of her cervix on the web. I encourage you to visit and view the cervix pictures.

Get to know your own body. To schedule an appointment with me, to view your cervix or otherwise, call 541-963-6962.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Diets and Weight Loss

A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that calorie restriction resulted in weight loss regardless of focus on carbohydrates, fats, or proteins. This idea is not new and supports the benefit of a healthy varied diet.

Diet should focus on receiving a variety of vitamins and nutrients, rather than restricting them. Carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are all needed to maintain health. The focus on fast food in the US has resulted in a high calorie nutrient poor diet. People should focus on eating a variety of foods, especially of plant origins. Plant based foods tend to provide the highest amount of nutrients for the fewest calories. They also are bulky, which means that your stomach fills up on less food, resulting in a lower caloric intake.

To schedule a nutritional consultation please contact me at 541-663-6962.
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