Dr. Dana Marshall

Healthy Holiday Guide for Mind, Body, and Spirit

Posted by on Dec 20, 2017 in Blog, Dr. Dana Marshall, Dr. Susan Joyce, General Health, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Healthy Holiday Guide for Mind, Body, and Spirit

For many, the holiday season is the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ because it brings about family and social gatherings, opportunities to bring people together, outings and events, parties, and presents! At the same time, the holiday season also brings added stress, pressured work deadlines, year ends, extra household and entertaining duties, changes to your nutrition and alcohol habits, and even a lack of sleep! So, the most wonderful time of the year, can also be accompanied by many factors that can put your health at risk – physically, emotionally, and mentally. We all want to enjoy this time of year. Here are our tips for how to manage all of the extra demands being made.  We feel it is critical to being able to relax, have fun, and truly be present this holiday season. Body Wash your hands often to help prevent the spread of germs. Holiday season is also cold and flu season. And with all of your family and friends in close proximity, regular hand washing isn’t just a good health practice for yourself, but it’s also a way to help your most vulnerable loved ones (children and the elderly) stay clear of viral and bacterial germs. Wash your hands with soap and clean running water for at least 20 seconds and follow up with an nice natural hand cream to keep your skin moisturized and free of harmful dryness and cracks. Bundle up to stay dry and warm. Even if you’re just running outside to toss out the recycling, or picking up the kids from school, be sure to wear appropriate outdoor clothing: light, warm, loose layers keep you comfortable and insulated, while winter accessories like gloves, hats, scarves, and waterproof boots prevent you from rapid loss of body heat. Be food aware, choose wisely. Holiday foods then to be full of extra delicious things like butter, sugar and wheat and while indulging in this festive season is not altogether bad, you must learn to choose your indulgences wisely to prevent bloating, weight gain, hormonal imbalance, dehydration, digestion issues. Make holiday treats healthy by sneaking in veggies It might sound strange, but we love finding ways to hide vegetables in sweet treats. Feel better about serving your family its favourite cookies and cakes by finding recipes that use healthy pumpkin, zucchini, avocado, or even almond meal to replace wheat flour and/or sugar. You won’t taste the difference but you’ll all be healthier as a result!  Mind Set limits Performing well at work, caring for yourself and your family, AND pulling off a holiday feast can become extra daunting over the holiday season when more demands both personally and professionally are made on you. It’s time to learn that it’s good to say “No” to some things that spread you too thin, make you anxious, put you on edge, or  stress you out. Concentrate on doing fewer things – and ask others to take on tasks to support the bigger picture – and not only will they come out better, but you’ll be able to enjoy the fruits of your labour too! Take a break When you feel stressed out, overwhelmed, or out of control – it’s time to breathe deeply and take a break. When all of the tasks at hand seem to carry the same weight and gravity, stepping back to get some perspective is a healthy and supportive way to manage stress. Figure out what you can let go of, find support from others for things that need to get done (but maybe not by you, this time), take time for social...

Read More

Resolutions are all wrong! Set yourself up for success instead!

Posted by on Dec 13, 2017 in Blog, Dr. Dana Marshall, Dr. Susan Joyce, General Health | Comments Off on Resolutions are all wrong! Set yourself up for success instead!

Every New Year the “R” word kicks into full force. RESOLUTIONS. We evaluate the past year, how we ‘performed’, what we ‘lacked’, and what we are committed to doing 100% the next year. The trouble is that only about 8% of people actually keep their resolutions. For the rest of us, resolutions serve to remind us of what we didn’t follow through on, what we might have ‘failed at’ again, or what we fell short of achieving. In the end, resolutions create a measuring stick that sets most of us up for failure. So this year, what if you let go of the “R” word and focus on intentions instead? There’s a difference between these words, though we tend to use them interchangeably. A ‘resolution’ is similar to a ‘SMART goal’: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely, except that when it comes to making personal resolutions, the most common ones usually miss out on the measureable and realistic parts. Unfortunately those are the two aspects of resolution making that make most of us give up or fall short! These were the top 10 New Year’s Resolutions for 2017:   1 Lose Weight / Healthier Eating 21.4% 2 Life / Self Improvements 12.3% 3 Better Financial Decisions 8.5% 4 Quit Smoking 7.1% 5 Do more exciting things 6.3% 6 Spend More Time with Family / Close Friends 6.2% 7 Work out more often 5.5% 8 Learn something new on my own 5.3% 9 Do more good deeds for others 5.2% 10 Find the love of my life 4.3   When you read these themes, I bet you can imagine how they’re translated into ‘resolutions’ like: “lose X lbs by Y date” or “save X amount of money by Y date”. Can you see how much pressure and expectation there is on finding one acceptable and final outcome for these resolutions – and how discouraging it would be to not meet them? Just reading them makes my heart sink with the expectation of it all! Why do this to ourselves – and at the start of a brand new year, too?  This is where intentions can be more useful, more positive, and more sustainable. In his book, The Power of Intention, Wayne Dyer defines intention as “a strong purpose or aim, accompanied by a determination to produce a desired result.” Rather than focusing on a problem to be solved, intentions focus energy on a gradual shifting towards change, a continual checking in with one’s Self to remember and activate inner motivation to live with the intention set. This New Year, try the following: Write a “Letter of Intention” to yourself. Consider a maximum of FOUR intentions you want to live with and guide your life by over the next year and beyond. The idea is to choose four things that will become themes to live by, that you can cultivate rather than a goal to be ticked off a list. When you select your four intentions choose one based on the physical body, one on the emotions, one on the mind, and one on the spirit. Allow these four intentions to be broader than a specific end-goal, and more of a theme or quality to which you can tend. Re-read your letter and sit with it for a while. Come back to it and distill the content into four intention statements beginning with “I want…” Hang onto that full letter though! Use these four statements as a daily personal mantra when you arise in the morning, and let them be the way you begin each day – excited and content in...

Read More

It’s All In Your Gut!

Posted by on Nov 27, 2017 in Blog, Dr. Dana Marshall, Dr. Susan Joyce, General Health, Healthy Eating | Comments Off on It’s All In Your Gut!

It’s all in your gut! There’s a lot to talk about when it comes to your gut. And that’s for good reason. While we’re still learning a lot about how the interaction between the digestive system and the rest of the body works, we do know that the delicate balance of intestinal flora in your digestive system can affect the body’s ability to perform the critical functions that affect our overall health, such as: Absorbing and producing vitamins and minerals, Regulating hormones, Digesting effectively, Responding to the immune system, and Eliminating toxins For those of us who already suffer from gastrointestinal or bowel disorders such as IBS, Celiac disease, or leaky gut syndrome, the link between gut and mental health become more pronounced.  And, our gastrointestinal (GI) health may be the root cause of many symptoms throughout the body – including your mental health! Given how extensive the influence of the gut is on these essential bodily functions, it’s clear that gut health is one of the most important ways we can look after our overall health. While there are MANY ways to take care of your gut, there are two factors that influence gut flora directly: prebiotics and probiotics. How does the connection between gut and body work? Well, in between the layers of your digestive tract is something called the enteric nervous system (ENS), which is made of two thin layers of over 100 million nerve cells lining your GI tract literally from top to bottom. The ENS sends messages between the gut and the brain. That’s why the gut is often called the “second brain.” And as you’ll see from the symptoms listed below, the messages that the second brain sends can be very persuasive! How can you tell if your gut is imbalanced? The ideal balance of gut bacteria is about 85% good bacteria to 15% bad bacteria. And that’s out of about 100 trillion bacteria that naturally live in our gut all the time! But this balance can be upset in the course of daily life, by caffeine, processed foods, stress, long-term use medications and antibiotics. In fact, one course of antibiotics can leave your gut bacteria weaker for years! And as we age, the natural decrease in our stomach acid – which plays an important role in the growth of good bacteria – enables bad bacteria to get stronger. The main culprit of a bacteria imbalance, though, is over-consumption of sugars. To make a real and immediate positive impact on your gut health, it’s essential to limit simple carbohydrates like sugars found in sodas, desserts, and processed foods like breads and flour products. There are all kinds of indicators of an imbalanced gastrointestinal system – we just have to pay attention to them. Symptoms like: Bloated, gassy and distended abdomen Extreme bowel movement patterns like diarrhea or constipation (or a fluctuation of both) Skin conditions including acne, irritations, and eczema flare-ups Constant fatigue despite getting an adequate amount of sleep ‘Down’ or sad emotions, irritability, anxiety Candida or yeast overgrowth Weight loss due to lack of an appetite or gain weight due to cravings for food lacking nutrients How can we help our gut communicate best? By providing it with what it needs to keep the balance of necessary good and bad bacteria we can help the gut take care of its biggest job – regulating digestion. That way, the gut’s messages to the body and mind are clear, efficient, and healthy. But how? There are MANY things we can do to aid in gut health and healing, but some simple things it...

Read More

The Trouble with Stress

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in Blog, Dr. Dana Marshall, Dr. Susan Joyce, General Health, Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Trouble with Stress

We often underestimate the power of stress. We like to see stress as natural, and even helpful, in being productive in our day-to-day lives. But the positive effects of stress, like goal orientation, motivation, and even intensified memory or cognitive responses are most beneficial in small doses. Many of us have built up tolerances to living with constant, heightened stress levels, and the temptation to see this as a positive or heroic trait has reduced our natural desire to respond to it. Instead of recognizing and reacting to the core ‘fight or flight’ survival response that stress provides, many of us function with heightened stress for long periods of time without realizing that living under continued high stress can have dire health consequences. How stress works: You’ve probably heard this before, and you’ve certainly felt it: the pounding heart, the rushing sounds in your ears, and an acute and intense desire for action when something has caught you completely off guard. When your brain perceives some kind of stress, be it your move in a basketball game, a heated argument, or stepping off a busy street, it starts producing an influx of epinephrine, norepinephrine and cortisol hormones. This flood of chemicals produces a variety of reactions to respond to the stress: increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, and an acute focus on taking whatever action is necessary to stay safe. Stress can be brought on by a variety of internal and external factors, and it can be a very healthy reaction and necessary to maintain our survival. It’s when you remain in a state of heightened stress for prolonged periods of time, that the effects of stress on your system can become a real medical problem. How much stress is too much stress? Life events, changes in lifestyle, work, family, or even shifting responsibilities such as child or parent care, relationships, and work can directly affect feelings of overwhelm. When the amount on our plate reaches a place of critical mass, we experience overwhelm. That experience can present itself in many ways that signify stress. Emotional stressors like these that remain for a period of weeks, months, or even years can become detrimental to your immune system, and your overall health. Being able to recognize our own stress signals is the first step to finding ways to cope with stress, and dissipate it, to return to a healthy state that will enable you to work through the demands placed on you. Recognizing Stress Responses: There are many ways that stress expresses itself. While some might be more familiar to you than others, a person can experience some or all of these at different times. But, multiplied sources of ongoing stress can lead to larger health issues. If chronic stress is not dealt with effectively, it can become debilitating, leading to an inability of what we want to do most: thrive at work, and in life with our family and friends. Being able to recognize the sensations of stress is the first step to being able to discuss them with your professional health team. Then, they can help you find ways to cope with stress effectively. Stress can feel like: Frenetic energy or restlessness Fatigue, or trouble sleeping or staying awake Digestive issues, changes in appetite, over or under eating Change in use of addictive substances like alcohol, tobacco, or drugs Inability to concentrate or complete tasks Increased frequency of colds or other illnesses like autoimmune disease flares Heightened anger or impatience Headaches, migraines, body aches Increased irritability, anger, or anxiety Lack of motivation, depression, sadness Inability to catch your...

Read More

Welcome to Healthy Foundations Naturopathic Clinic!

Posted by on Mar 26, 2015 in Blog, Dr. Dana Marshall, Dr. Susan Joyce, General Health | Comments Off on Welcome to Healthy Foundations Naturopathic Clinic!

Healthy Foundations Naturopathic Clinic was founded on a very simple principle – to provide our patients with the foundations for good health. Why do we feel that Healthy Foundations Naturopathic Clinic is unique? We are dedicated. We are committed to providing our patients and their families with the tools and guidance they need to develop their own individualized health plan. We educate. We feel that in order for people to take control of their own health and get involved in their own healing process, they need to be informed. We strive to teach and empower our patients, both during our in-office visits, as well as through handouts and take home resources. We care. We are hoping to create a long term relationship with our patients. We know that one’s health is continually evolving, and we wish to be there to support our patients through these changes. We are passionate. We feel very strongly that the body has the ability to heal itself. We invest wholeheartedly into helping people feel their best. We are diverse. We know that not all people have the same needs, so we use a variety of modalities including: herbal medicine, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, diet and nutrition, cleansing and detoxes, exercise, and lifestyle counseling. We listen. We spend a lot of time with each patient. We really want to understand and attend to what that individual needs at that time. We investigate. We use a variety of different tests to help us gain a better understanding of a patient’s health. Some of the tests we find to be helpful are the IgG Blood Spot Allergy test, Hair Mineral Analysis, Salivary Hormone testing and Comprehensive Digestive Stool analysis. We understand. We are both moms, wives, daughters, siblings, aunts, friends and business owners. We know how busy life can get and how hard it can be to find balance. We love what we do! When it all comes down to it, the heart of the matter is that we are both completely devoted to what we do. We love Naturopathic Medicine. We live it, breath it, eat it and believe it. Over time, we hope that we can instill this enthusiasm in you. Yours in health, Dana Marshall, ND and Susan Joyce,...

Read More