Welcome to Our Healing Roots, a blog exploring natural medicine that returns us to the roots of health and wellbeing. Our Healing Roots, LLC, is a private natural healthcare practice and experiential learning center that advocates the safe use of integrated, natural medicine. Many healing ways have gone by the wayside with the advent of conventional medicine. While it is important to receive professional medical advice for serious conditions, there are many things we can do at home to prevent disease and maintain our health. The Latin word for doctor is docere, which means to be a teacher. Our Healing Roots wholehearted embraces the importance of teaching in healthcare, so that people feel empowered about their health and wellbeing. More information about this business can be found at www.ourhealingroots.net.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

New Office Hours

Our Healing Roots, LLC, will have new office hours for the next 12 weeks as follows...

Monday-Wednesday  5-8 p.m.
Thursday-Friday  8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Second Saturday  12-4 p.m.

To schedule an appointment please call 918-813-1874 or e-mail office@ourhealingroots.net.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Healthy, Green Cleaning Ideas

Tomorrow, April 22nd, is Earth Day. I will be celebrating Earth Day with over 500 pre-K-2nd grade students with the Oklahoma Association of Naturopathic Physicians (OKANP). We will be teaching these students healthy, green cleaning techniques.

I became interested in healthy, green cleaning techniques as a student in college when I read an article in a magazine. I learned that I could clean my room and apartment for a fraction of the price using simple household items such as baking soda, vinegar, water and salt. Vinegar and salt have excellent anti-microbial action.

I wash my mirrors and windows with equal parts of vinegar and water mixed in a spray bottle. The vinegar provides a streak-free clean to mirrors and windows. You can use old newsprint instead of paper towels.

I sprinkle salt in my sinks and use it as a mild abrasive for scrubbing. Then I shine up the faucets and drains with vinegar. Baking soda mixed with vinegar makes a great cleaner for toilets and drains.

What are some of your favorite, green cleaning techniques?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Integrating Paradigms

This past Thursday, I gave a lecture about homeopathy using two different paradigms. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines paradigm as "a theory or group of ideas about how something should be done, made or thought about."

Our current conventional medical paradigm is shaping how we think about and use natural medicines. For example, we often begin with a diagnosis and then ask what a particular supplement/medicine is effective for that diagnosis. It is not uncommon that I overhear people in health food stores asking, "What can I take for [insert diagnosis here]?" Thus, many homeopathic medicines have been marketed by what they are used for.
   * Rescue Remedy is used for stress.
   * Calms Forte is used for insomnia.
   * Homeopathic oscillococcinum is used for flu.
   * Homeopathic arnica is used for bruising.

However, using homeopathy this way often produces less consistency in effectiveness. Indeed, some people get lucky and it works great; however, others are left unsatisfied and feeling like homeopathy does not work. The trouble is that we have take a system out of its original paradigm and applied a completely different paradigm to it.

In the original homeopathic paradigm, homeopathy focuses less on x, y, or z disease and is instead interested in the expression of a disease. Take hot flashes for example. There are several different expressions of hot flashes. Some people get heavy sweating; others feel like they are dry and burning up; some feel the heat only in certain parts of their body; some will have certain types of strong emotions with the hot flashes. Different things may make the hot flashes better or worse. In homeopathy, it is details like these that guide one to selecting an effective remedy, not the fact that someone is having hot flashes.  

Each homeopathic remedy, like a personality, has a pattern of several characteristics and traits. The goal is to match the expression of disease to the right pattern. The effectiveness of homeopathy increases when you consider the entire pattern and expression of disease, which is quite different from our current conventional paradigm.  

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Fancy Footwork

Lately, I've been thinking and reading about feet and all they wonderful ways they can help restore our health.

Over a hundred years ago, naturopathic doctors would recommend that patients take off their shoes and tread through the snow or walk in a cold stream with their bare feet for short periods of time. (Of course, you don't want to try this if your feet already feel frozen. Warm them up before trying this exercise.) This was used to help improve circulation to the extremities and to relieve the congestion of blood in the inner organs associated with chronic disease. I admit I haven't tried this, but I'm inspired to create cold, calf-deep wading pool with a pebble bottom and give it a try.  

Then, there is the alternating foot bath which is a favorite of mine for swollen legs and feet. You get two buckets of water, one warm and one cold. Soak your feet in the warm water for three minutes and then plunge them into the cold bucket for 30 seconds. Do this process three times ending on cold. I have found this to help with swelling about the next 24 hours.

Pictured above is the herbal foot bath I just enjoyed. (I love watching dried herbs in water.) I poured warm water over relaxing herbs such as chamomile, lavender, and lemon grass and soaked my feet. It was amazing how relaxed I immediately felt. You can also do a fresh, hot ginger foot bath, which can help with cold feet.

I recommend a technique called "warming socks" to help people who are struggling with pain and fever, which can be particularly helpful during cold and flu season. This technique also uses a contrast between warm and cold to help relieve congestion.

Finally, there has been a rising interest in what is called the "Earthing" or "Grounding" movement to help decrease pain and inflammation. This movement involves taking off your shoes and standing/walking on a safe area of ground.

...and I even forgot to mention reflexology! This week, I urge you to connect with your feet and explore how they can help you in your journey towards health.