The flu is hitting people heavily this season. Rest is the best medicine. Please stay home from school or work. And have someone make this delicious immune-boosting Congee recipe for you. 

 

Congee (Rice Porridge)

Active time: 10 minutes

Preparation time: 3+ hours Serves 2

Here’s a recipe that’s excellent for just about whatever ails you. Rice porridge, congee, jook … all of these are names for a long-simmered soup.

Congee is a strengthening porridge often concocted to support a specific health issues. According to Chinese medicine, simmering this soup for three hours balances the yin and yang of each ingredient, making it highly medicinal and easy to assimilate.

Congee is easy to make in a crock pot. Put up the soup before going to bed and awaken to this satisfying porridge. (You can put it up before going to work and the soup will be ready when you come home, or carry the ingredients to work and put them in the office crock pot for a hot lunch.)

1/2 cup rice (or barley, wild rice or whole oats)

4 cups water or stock (add more for thinner consistency or longer cooking time)

1 2-inch piece kombu seaweed

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon minced ginger

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1 cup chopped cooked chicken breast (or cubed tofu) 2 scallions, chopped

Place rice, water, kombu, bay leaf, ginger, salt and cumin in a 3-quart soup pot or crock pot. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to very slow simmer and cook for at least 3 hours or up to 8 hours, stirring occasionally. Add additional water if necessary. Prior to serving add the chicken and scallions and cook for 5 minutes, or until the chicken is warmed through. Season to taste. Enjoy! 

Sick & Tired? Me too….

December 6, 2012

Turns out, Doctors get sick too. And when we do, we like to experiment on ourselves to see which remedies will help us get better sooner, and shorten the duration of the sickness. 

I have been moderately sick off and on since before Thanksgiving now. Symptoms have ranged from sinus pain and runny nose, to sore throat, body aches, and just plain tired. I decided yesterday that enough is enough, and gave myself a cold “cocktail” consisting of a B12 injection and our clinic’s new homeopathic injectable medication designated for colds, flus and low energy. I chose this remedy as an experiment for two reasons: 1) it is very inexpensive, and 2) I was not interested in downing an entire bottle of a cold supplement this week. 

 

And how do I feel today, you ask? BETTER. I cannot say I am 100% better, (although it has only been less than 24 hours since the shot) but my sore throat is gone and I am less tired. I do believe the B12 shot yesterday helped tremendously with my energy and expect the homeopathic injection to continue to work its magic. 

 

The bottom line: I am recommending immune support of ANY kind when you are sick and tired. And NFM’s homeopathic injections for colds and viruses are an easy, fast and CHEAP (about $4 per injection) way to give your body an immune boost. And it certainly beats taking a handful of supplements 5 times a day! 

 

Have a great and healthy weekend, everyone! 

~Dr. Deegan

NFM Holiday Giving Campaign

November 28, 2012

Every year at NFM, we like to start the holiday season with a Giving Campaign.  In years past, we have chosen local non-profit organizations, local groups who do special child-oriented charity work, or even a member of our own very extended NFM family to honor and support.  This year, we have decided to aim our donations at 5 kids in 2 of our families!  The Hurst family, in particular, their 3 young boys, James, Dakota, and Reilly; and the Scobee family, including Olivia and Abbey.  Here are their stories:

The Hurst Family

On Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012, at the age of 37, Angela Hurst was diagnosed with Stage 3 Colon Cancer while sixteen weeks pregnant with her fourth baby boy. While Thomas, Angela, and their three sons, now face a long fight ahead of them, the story of who they are and how they have coped with this devastating news can be found on their website, www.teamhurst.org.  This website was setup by a team of people, with the permission of the Hurst’s, to coordinate support and communicate updates for the Hurst family as they fight the hardest fight they have ever faced. The people who serve on this team are people who deeply love the Hurst’s, who are deeply trusted by the Hurst’s, and who are deeply committed to being with the Hurst’s to endure, persevere, and encourage them through the next season.

In order to support this loving family, we would like to ask for donations for their boys for this Holiday season. As you can imagine, funds are tight with extraordinarily high medical bills, and we’d like to be able to give the boys the best Christmas they can imagine, full of all the toys and love we can gather for them.  Here are some ideas for each of them:

James – age 7 – mom says he’s pretty easy to please.  He loves Legos, sports stuff, Star Wars, and Nerf Guns. For clothes, he is a size 8 and he could use jammies, socks and underwear.

Dakota – age 5 – mom says he is also very easy to please and likes the same sorts of things that his big brother likes; Legos, sports stuff, Star Wars, and Nerf Guns. For clothes, he is a size 6 and he could also use some jammies, socks and underwear.

Reilly – age 19 months – doesn’t need toys but grows out of his clothes awfully fast, and he wears size 2T.

The Scobee Family

It was only about 6 weeks ago that Olivia and her dad came into the office with what appeared to be a routine cold, though Olivia had a very swollen lymph node in her node.  She just didn’t look well.  What followed was some very concerning lab work, followed by an emergency visit to Seattle Children’s Hospital, and from there, Olivia was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) within just a couple of days.  Since then, it’s been a bit of a whirlwind for Olivia, age 8 and her family.  She is finally home now and we are hoping to help her have an even merrier Christmas this year.  I also want to be sure to not forget her sister, Abbey, age 13, who has had to take a back seat to her sister’s needs for some time now.  Here are some ideas for the two of them:

Olivia – age 8 – tickets to the Seattle Children’s Theater, iTunes gift card, Starbucks gift card, Borders or Barnes and Noble gift card.

Abbey – age 13 – tickets to the Seattle Children’s Theater, iTunes gift card, Starbucks gift card, Borders or Barnes and Noble gift card.

Obviously these girls like to read and listen to music, like most tweens and teens!

We will be collecting donations here at NFM through December 24th.  If you are able to bring your gift all wrapped up with the child’s name on it, it would save Santa a bit of work on Christmas Eve.  If gifts are not your thing, please feel free to bring monetary donations for the families  to the clinic, or you can donate directly to the Hursts at their website, www.teamhurst.org.

If you need a map to our clinic for your donations, please visit http://www.naturopathicfamilymedicine.com/patients.htm.

Thank you for supporting our extended NFM family, the Hursts and the Scobees.  Happy Holidays to everyone!

What is craniosacral therapy?

Craniosacral therapy is a gentle form of bodywork that addresses deeply held tensions in the body and helps to rebalance the nervous system. Craniosacral therapy, like naturopathic medicine, is based on the principle of interconnectedness within the body. Connective tissue, known as fascia, surrounds and supports everything in your body, including muscles, organs, blood vessels, and nerves. Fascia is capable of holding tension in the body – it helps suspend organs, transmits muscle movement to bones, and when free of restrictions, it allows muscles to glide over one another.  When fascia becomes restricted it can result in pain or discomfort in the body. Using a very soft touch, craniosacral practitioners help the body release these restrictions by assessing tension held in the body and supporting structures in a way that allows them to release and rebalance.

How can craniosacral therapy promote healing?

Craniosacral therapy also helps support the body’s innate ability to heal by encouraging relaxation. A part of our nervous system, known as the autonomic nervous system can be divided into two parts – the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, each with its own unique function. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for the fight, flight, or freeze response that occurs when we are under stress. In contrast, the parasympathetic nervous system, when engaged, has the opposite effects – this part of our nervous system enables us to rest and properly digest. Parasympathetic activity also promotes healing in the body. The nerves that make up the parasympathetic nervous system exit the brain and spinal cord at the cranial and sacral levels. By releasing fascial tension in these regions, a craniosacral therapist promotes healing by encouraging the body to move into a more parasympathetic state.

How can craniosacral therapy benefit you?

Craniosacral therapy can be helpful in the treatment of:

  • migraines
  • headaches
  • TMJ
  • sinusitis
  • chronic neck and back pain
  • chronic fatigue
  • stress related conditions
  • constipation
  • and many other conditions

What is a typical craniosacral session like?

A typical craniosacral session usually lasts 30-60 minutes. During this time the patient lies face up on a massage table fully clothed. The practitioner will usually begin with an assessment of the head and other areas of concern before moving on to treatment.

Call Naturopathic Family Medicine to schedule an appointment. Covered by most insurance companies.

School Lunches and Snacks

October 10, 2012

Kid-Friendly school lunches and snacks are not always easy to come by. 

Here are our favorites to help get those daily fruits and veggies in your child:

Dips! (When I dip, you dip, we dip!) Dips are a fun and easy way to get calories and veggies in your kid without them knowing. The classics, like guacamole, humus, and nut butters are always a good standard must-have to stock; but if you are feeling bored or stuck in a lunch-making rut, try these delicious and kid-friendly dips that will work for lunch and after-school snacks, too:

1) Salsa with black beans and corn (or another veggie chopped up)- dip with chips or veggie sticks

2) Fruit and yogurt

3) Fruit and cream cheese

4) Apples and Carrots dipped in pesto sauce (PCC makes a vegan pesto)

5) Chicken strips in Thai peanut sauce

PCC makes plenty of dairy-free, nut-free, or vegan kid-friendly dips to be tried. (Adults love them, too!)

Fancy Pasta! Most parents I talk with loathe the idea of feeding (no pun intended) the pasta obsession. But there are plenty of ways to make a heathy pasta. Plus, left over cold pasta also makes a delicious lunch.

1) Brown rice rigatoni with meat marinara sauce (puree sweet potato and carrots and add to red sauce. Your child will NEVER know, promise.)

2) Stuff large pasta shells with ricotta cheese and pine nuts.

3) Quinoa pasta with pesto sauce and chicken is delicious.

4) Lasagna layered with root veggies is sweet and different.

Tortilla Wraps! Instead of bread for sandwiches, use a tortilla wrap. ‘Nuff said. (Pita bread is also fun.)

Beef Jerky! Dip it in some hummus.

Need more ideas? Let me know, and I will hunt some down for you.

Welcome Dr. Misset!

October 2, 2012

We are so happy to have Dr. Kellyn Misset, our new first year resident join us at NFM!  We will be having an Open House to welcome her on October 31st, from 3-7 pm.  Bring the kids, wear your costumes, we will have treats!

To help get to know her a little better, here is Dr. Misset’s bio.  

Dr. Kellyn Misset has always had the desire to pursue family medicine,

and experience has taught her that her greatest joy comes from working

with children and their families. This is what led her to become the

resident physician at Naturopathic Family Medicine.

 

Dr. Misset discovered the field of naturopathic medicine while in high

school, and since then she has been engaged in the study of health,

the human body, and the environment. Dr. Misset was drawn to

naturopathic medicine because it recognized the importance of the

individual as well as the interconnectedness of all things. By

emphasizing prevention of disease and bringing awareness to deeper

aspects of wellbeing, Dr. Misset works collaboratively with her

patients to educate them about their bodies and assist them in the

development of healthy habits that have the power to positively shift

the present and future of their health.

 

During her time at Bastyr University, Dr. Misset gained extensive

experience in pediatric care and women’s health. Emotional wellbeing,

reproductive health, immune and endocrine dysfunction, and childhood

development disorders are but a few of Dr. Misset’s clinical

interests. In effort

to best serve her patients and address subtler forms of imbalance, Dr.

Misset has sought additional training in craniosacral therapy and

constitutional homeopathy.

 

Dr. Misset is happily accepting new patients, and is available by

appointment on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. She looks forward to

seeing you through your journey to a more vibrant and balanced state

of being.

Back to School, Back to Basics

September 19, 2012

As we are getting in the swing of this new school year, remember the simple and basic keys to health.

1. Sleep: Kids need a full night’s sleep to grow, learn, and recover Help them out by setting a bed time routine that will allow them to sleep a minimum of 10 hours (for school-aged children). Pre-school aged children need a minimum of 12 hours. (www.webmd.com)

2. Water: Water is an essential nutrient for everything the body does, including learning! Kids aged 4-8 years of age need 1.3 L of water a day; while kids aged 9-13 need just over 2 L per day. Teenagers require even more than that. Be sure to help your kids out by packing a refillable water bottle in their lunch box. (www.eatright.org)

3. Breakfast: Eating a breakfast high in both protein and fiber will help keep your kiddo full until lunch, and prevent blood sugar crashes until snack time. This will leave me feeling more focused and prepared to take on their day. 

4. Activity: Limiting screen time (TV, computer, iPad, iPod, video games, etc) to less than 2 hours a day is healthy. Too much screen time is associated with obesity, irregular sleep, behavioral problems, violence, and impaired academic performance. (www.mayoclinic.com)

5. Down Time: It is easy to overextend ourselves, and our kids. While extra-curricular activities are fun and important, so is time for rest, quiet reading, talking with family members, eating meals while not rushed, etc. This down time allows for you to connect with your children, listen to them share, and for rejuvenation. Be sure to not have an after school activity every day of the week.