Unpasteurized Raw Milk: The Controversy

Canada has had a federal prohibition on raw milk sales since 1991, preventing the sale and distribution of unpasteurized milk. Australia is the only country with a prohibition similar to ours. You can find raw milk for sale in stores in California and even in vending machines in France. Raw milk is generally legal with tight regulation across the European Union and some argue for the legalization of raw milk here in Canada. But how safe is raw milk and what are the benefits?

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Candida Overgrowth and the Gut

Candida is commonly found in non-pathogenic amounts in the gastrointestinal tract, vagina, and on the skin. A healthy amount of candida is usually maintained and kept in check by our immune system and other bacteria. Health issues can arise if candida growth is out of control and overgrows in one or more areas of the body.

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Coffee: the good, the bad, the ugly

Many of my new clients assume that a large part of my job as a naturopathic doctor is to convince people to completely eliminate coffee from their diet. This blog post is meant to clear up some of these questions and provide a quick review of some benefits and risks associated with regular coffee consumption.

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My Favorite Winter Cold-busting Tea

It may be the last leg of winter, but there are a lot of people out there (at least in Guelph) fighting off that final winter bug. My long-time favourite tea for when I’m feeling under the weather or when I’m simply craving a healthy warming brew is a ginger decoction with cinnamon and a hint of cayenne. Recently I threw in some sage leaves to boost the tea’s antiviral and bacterial activity, and to my surprise, the tea was even tastier than before so I decided to share the recipe with you.

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Surviving this Valentine’s Day

February is heart month and that time of the year when people celebrate another holiday full of mass-produced holiday cards; Valentine’s Day. While this tends to be a time of joy for lovers and partners, others can find this time of year a little tough. Reminders of past loved ones or feelings of loneliness can arise when we are constantly reminded of what other’s (seem to) have. But fear not, as someone who never really took this love holiday seriously, I have a few tips to get you through.

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What Does EMDR Look Like? EMDR Explained in 10 Steps

Do you experience symptoms of trauma, depression, anxiety, or relationship difficulties? EMDR may provide some relief by helping process stuck negative experiences affecting you today, even though the actual event is long in the past. But what is EMDR and what does it look like? Read on for a 10 step run down of the process of EMDR, and how helps get the clutter of past negative experiences out of your way so you can move forward.

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One Year Ago Today

One year ago today, February 2nd 2014, I headed to Guelph Community Acupuncture for the first time. I had heard of community-style acupuncture before and was even considering eventually opening up my own community space, but had never entered a POCA clinic before. I was completely unaware that there are communities across North America getting acupuncture together in lazyboy chairs, quietly healing in numbers

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Feeling Down or Nervous? 10 Mood Tips from a Naturopathic Doctor

We all have them; those times in your life when things aren't working out for you. Days when life is draining and it’s difficult to get out of bed in the morning. You may have work-related stress, be suffering from a lack of sleep, grieving a lost loved one, or maybe winter is really affecting you. Whatever the case may be, there are many things you can do that may improve your mood. In this guest blog post I suggest 10 mood tips to try.

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Easy Grounding Exercises to Calm the Nervous System

Grounding has come up in conversation for me several times this week and, as it is a very healthy skill and tool to have, I thought I might share it with you. Grounding is a technique that helps us reorient to the here-and-now, to bring us into the present. They are a useful technique if you ever feel overwhelmed, intensely anxious, or dissociated from your environment.

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Lactose Intolerance

Lactase is the enzyme required to digest lactose, a milk sugar. When lactose comes into contact with its enzyme lactase, lactose is split into absorbable components: glucose and galactose. As we get older our ability to produce the enzyme lactase decreases in about 75 percent of people, resulting in high rates of lactose intolerance within the general population.

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Make Your Own Immune-Boosting Elderberry Tonic

I regularly suggest Elderberry syrup for a cold or flu, a remedy that is especially useful for those young ones who resist any pills or nasty-tasting tinctures. Elderberries are now widely studied for their antiviral properties and ability to boost our immune system. 

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The NADA Protocol: Needling for mental health and substance withdrawal

The NADA protocol or 5-NP is a series of 5 needles in the ear commonly used in the treatment of substance addiction, PTSD, and anxiety. Extensively proven and cost-effective, the NADA protocol is becoming increasingly popular as an intervention in public health clinics, including the Toronto East General Hospital, the Toronto Western Hospital, the Oshawa Lakeridge Health Centre, York Regional Addictions Services, and St. Joseph’s Hospital in Toronto.

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Stinging Nettle: Medicine and Food

Many of us first become familiar with nettle in our youth, as an annoying plant encountered when exploring fields or the bushes, but nettle is in fact a powerful nutritive tonic when used as medicine or food. Young nettle shoots can be picked in the spring and enjoyed in a variety of ways.

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The Ins and Outs of Eggs: Types, Nutrition, Cholesterol, and Backyard Chickens

I recently moved into a lovely home that includes a chicken coop complete with 3 chickens in the backyard. The idea of affordable, (very) local fresh eggs in the morning was always overshadowed by an assumption that a chicken coop is a great deal of hard work. Turns out I was mistaken; chickens are actually low-maintenance when compared to most of our other domesticated pets. I so enjoy my new-found love for backyard chickens and it is because of this that I feel the need to clarify some myths and misunderstandings about eggs.

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