Your Cold and Flu “GO-KIT”

It is not uncommon for the ND’s at StoneTree to get emails or messages over the weekend, after hours, or when they are away from home, from patients who are coming down with cold or flu symptoms and want to get on top of them right away. No one wants a full-blown cold or flu!

Of course, the first thing we always recommend is to get in as soon as you can for in IV Vitamin C drip.

(To learn more, check out this “60 Minutes” documentary on the benefit of Vit C in resolving infection, or this interview with Dr. Marik, MD on the value of vitamin C and sepsis.)

When patients can’t get into the clinic for the “big guns” the first question we ask is, What supplements do you have at home?

As you might imagine, not everyone has a fully stocked cold- and flu-fighting pharmacy at home, and most people didn’t have the best tools at their disposal when they really needed them.

Here is what we wish you had:

  • Zinc. Studies show that taking zinc at first sign of cold symptoms can decrease the duration of the illness. We have definitely seen evidence of this in practice. It’s important to note, however, that more zinc is not always better. Taking too much for too long can create trouble, but taking it acutely for a short period is okay.
  • Oil of oregano. It tastes like a spaghetti monster exploded in your mouth, but this herb is AWESOME at killing all things microbial!
  • Echinacea and Goldenseal. These two herbal medicines together are a double threat to winter illness! Echinacea is the immune booster and goldenseal is anti-microbial. Taking them at first sign of symptoms can often stop a cold before it even starts.
  • Vitamin C. Can’t get in for an IVC? Taking Vitamin C orally can help, too. Taking a 1000mg every hour to bowel tolerance is the way to go. Some people may get an upset tummy but for those who tolerate it, get a chewable option–it feels like you are popping like sweet treats all day.
  • Castor Oil. This magical oil moves lymph, which means it helps the immune system move around. Sore throat? Apply cast0r oil and cover with a scarf. Ear infection? Castor oil to the neck, topped with a gentle heating pad, gets the lymph moving and moves the congestion out.

Now You Can Have the Wishlist On Hand!

For the cold and flu season, we’ve put together a cold and flu “GO-KIT”. It contains:

  • Zinc
  • Oil of oregano
  • Echinacea-Goldenseal tincture
  • An immune booster called Pascoleucyn that is safe and effective for all ages

You can pick up your “GO-KIT” at the front desk for $74.99 + HST. (Bought individually the kit works out to $104.81.)

Questions? Stop by to pick up your kit, or contact the clinic at 705-444-5331.

From Endometriosis to Concussion: What We Learned Last Weekend

Last weekend the StoneTree Clinic team got to enjoy the 2017 annual convention of the Ontario Association of Naturopathic Doctors–right here at Blue Mountain Resorts.

It was such a treat to show off the Collingwood area to our ND colleagues. With our amazing community and beautiful natural attractions, they all agreed: we live in one of the BEST places in Ontario to be healthy!

All the StoneTree Clinic docs attended, and here are some of the things we learned:

  • Dr. Candice: Endometriosis in shift workers is 50% higher than in non-shift workers, and correcting imbalances in circadian rhythms with natural remedies can really make a difference.
  • Dr. Maggie: After an awesome lecture on “traumatic brain injury” by Dr. Paul Hrkal ND, Dr. Maggie is excited about the research supporting consumption of omega 3 fats in the prevention AND treatment of concussion and brain injury.
  • Dr. Shelby: Learned about a simple test to determine if a person is being exposed to mold–thanks to the amazing Dr. Neil McKinney ND, one of our naturopathic elders who has been practicing and teaching for over 30 years.
  • Dr. Kendra: Learned from one of the world’s leading experts on probiotics, Dr. Nigel Plummer Ph.D., that patients will have much better outcomes (by having fewer side-effects) when they take probiotics with and after antibiotics.
  • Dr. Tara: Throughout the 2 days, Dr. Tara was reminded about the importance of daily, preventative supplementation. Everyone (including Dr. Tara) should take daily probiotics, fish oils, and vitamin D (at a minimum) to support optimal health.

Our docs are involved in continuing education throughout the year–if you have questions about the latest research, tools, and treatments, contact us anytime!

Cancer Care Comes to StoneTree

For several years, we’ve been looking for an experienced naturopathic doctor whose sole job at StoneTree would be to work with patients with a cancer diagnosis.

We found him!

We are very excited to welcome Dr. Ehab Mohammed, ND to the StoneTree Clinic family. Dr. Ehab is a licensed naturopathic doctor, board certified from the College of Naturopaths in Ontario.

What’s really exciting for us, however, is Dr. Ehab’s long oncology history as a medical doctor in Egypt, where he obtained his medical degree, a master’s in ocology, and a medical doctorate in radiation oncology. Dr. Ehab practiced oncology for over 20 years, published 33 scientific research articles in recognized medical journals.

After graduating from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM), Dr. Ehab spent a year on the adjunctive cancer care clinic shift where he managed patients under different types of conventional cancer care (chemotherapy, radiation, palliative care and surgery) with naturopathic supportive care.

If you know someone that needs support, our approach to cancer care strives to:
  • Decrease the side-effects of conventional cancer treatments
  • Support the patient’s immune system to avoid additional illness
  • Increase the effectiveness of conventional treatments
  • Improve overall health in an attempt to prevent the spread or recurrence of cancer
  • Help patients navigate the stress, information overload, and difficult choices created by a cancer diagnosis

StoneTree also offers alternative care for those patients who have exhausted all their conventional choices and are seeking new treatment options.

This is very exciting for us. Cancer touches lives every single day here in the Georgian Bay area, and this is something our patients need. We’re fortunate to be able to bring Dr. Ehab’s decades of cancer experience here to StoneTree!

Dr. Ehab will be starting at StoneTree Clinic, Thursday, November 16, 2017.  For more information, book an appointment, or contact the clinic at 705-444-5331.

Join Us for the Be the Change Film RIVERBLUE

“There is a joke in China. They say you can predict the “it” colour for the season by looking at the colour of the river”

 – From the documentary RiverBlue

On October 18th, the Be the Change Film Series kicks off its 10th year with the documentary RiverBlue. The film looks at the environmental impact of the “fast fashion” industry on our waterways, and as a result, our health.

We’re sponsoring the series, and would love to see you there! There are two show times, 5PM and 7:30PM, at the Simcoe Street Theatre. Tickets are $8, and all proceeds go to Elephant Thoughts and The Blue Mountain Watershed Trust.

See the full 2017-18 line-up and buy tickets here!

Terry Fox Run: September 17, 2017

Getting our kids moving is SO important for their overall health and success. In fact, movement is important for all of us–especially getting outside for fresh air and nature.

This Sunday brings a great community based opportunity to get outside and to move as a family, all in support of one of Canada’s heroes, Terry Fox.

The Marathon of Hope

It’s astonishing to look now at photos of Terry back in 1980. He was just 22, and running a marathon a day with an artificial leg that he dipped in the Atlantic in April before setting out to do the same the Pacific after running across the country.

Sadly, on September 1 of that summer, coughing and suffering severe chest pains, Terry’s run ended near Thunder Bay. His cancer had returned and spread to his lungs.

Terry died the following June. During his Marathon of Hope, he had run 5,737 kilometres in 143 days, inspired a nation, and kicked off what would become the single largest one-day cancer fundraiser in the world.

To date, more than $750 million has been raised worldwide.

Terry Fox from Nick Schelle on Vimeo.

You can help continue Terry’s legacy by participating in this year’s run. Registration for the Collingwood event is here.

Run Details

  • Sunday, September 17, 2017
  • Registration: 8:30 am
  • One Start: 10 am
  • Location: Harborview Park (behind McDonald’s Restaurant – Look for the tent for Registration)
  • Main intersection: First Street and Cedar Street
  • Free parking and public transit accessible

What to Bring

  • Dress appropriately for weather (can be cooler at the bay)
  • Water, snacks, warm-up, and music will be provided
  • The event is bicycle, stroller, and wheelchair accessible
  • And dog-friendly, too!

This event has no entry fee and no minimum fundraising amount. There are no barriers to entry. You don’t need a particular level of fitness. You can walk, run, jog, bike, or otherwise roll your way around the 2.5 km loop.

Register here.

It’s Here! The Pantry at StoneTree Clinic

We are so excited to introduce the newest service here at StoneTree Clinic!

The Pantry at StoneTree is a food resource for our patients who need to make diet changes, and for anyone who wants to find healthy food ingredients and pre-made meals that they can trust.

Improving nutrition is one of the cornerstones of what we do as Naturopathic Doctors. We almost invariably use diet change with our patients, and it’s great to see that the popular opinion is shifting to the realization that food is indeed medicine.

Of course, the idea of diet change is simple. But actually doing it? It’s one of the hardest things we ask our patients to do. Ask anyone who’s done an anti-inflammatory diet, or gone gluten- or dairy-free for any period. It’s not easy.

To help, we wanted to give our patients a resource to help make diet change a little easier.

The Pantry at StoneTree is a food store where ALL the things for sale are gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free. In addition to cooking ingredients and snacks, there are pre-made freezer meals that have all been taste-tested and are delicious. Now, you can have a week of meals ready to go that are filled with the right ingredients to get you started on your diet change.

Drop by the clinic to watch The Pantry grow, to try some delicious and healthy food, and to give us ideas for new foods. We’ll be adding new products all summer, filling the shelves with helpful ways to support your healthy changes!

Happy Birthday Canada!

We have a lot to celebrate!

  • Canadians are living longer than ever with an average life expectancy of 82 years.
  • Almost 90% of Canadians reported feeling in good to excellent health—the highest proportion of people among G7 countries.
  • 70% of Canadians considered their mental health to be either very good or excellent.
  • The proportion of Canadians who smoke is decreasing overall. Just under 4 million Canadians currently smoke – in 2002 there were 5.4 million.
  • More Canadians are completing their high school and post-secondary education than ever before—in 2015, 90% finished high school and 66% were a post-secondary graduate.

For this and so much more we are grateful to call this great country home.

Keep up the great work!

June 3rd is National Health and Fitness Day!

Let’s make Canada the Fittest Nation on Earth!

We write an annoying amount a lot about the many health benefits of exercise.

It really is one of the most important things to do for our overall health, so when we became aware of the Canada’s National Health and Fitness Day we just had to share.

The first Saturday in June, National Health and Fitness Day (NHFD), is an initiative to mark one day to promote Canadians getting out and getting active in any way they wish.

Springboarding off the spirit of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, former MP John Weston and Senator Nancy Greene Raine have worked to involve the 338 MPs and 100 Senators to encourage their local communities to proclaim the day and mark it with local events. Hundreds of communities have already proclaimed the day and the National Health and Fitness Day Act, Bill S-211, became law in December 2014!

Our community is hosting a MOVE walk/run, and a MOVE showcase of booths, demos, and activities. It all shakes down this Saturday, June 3rd from 9 AM to 1 PM at Central Park in Collingwood. Get all the details here!

Maybe you can use this to jump start a year of exercise. It’s the best 30-minute daily investment you can make!

Free Meditation Night at StoneTree

The team at StoneTree is excited to welcome Lanee Brown for an evening of mindfulness and meditation.

Mindfulness has left the fringes, and gained incredible traction in recent years. Research has shown that meditation can:

  •  Improve mental focus and increase short-term memory
  •  Reduce the risk of heart disease and lower blood pressure
  •  Improve sleep and reduce anxiety
  •  Increase self-confidence and self-esteem

Many of these benefits seem to be associated with how meditation changes the brain–something that’s now well-researched.

Please join us at the clinic this Wednesday, April 5, 2017. from 4-6 PM.

This evening is an opportunity to discover a taste of what mindfulness meditation offers. There’s no charge, and no experience required. Here are a few details:

  • 4-5PM – arrival, tea, talk and gentle movement in preparation for our meditation
  • 5-6PM – meditation & discussion
  • Doors will be locked at 5PM sharp as we will start the meditation at that time.
  • There will be some chairs available, but you may want to bring a cushion if sitting on the floor isn’t comfortable for you.

Please RSVP and let us know if you will be joining us by calling the clinic at 705-444-5331, or emailing feelbetter@stonetreeclinic.com.

 

 

2 Health Issues for International Women’s Day

March 8th is International Women’s Day. The intention of this day is both to celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women, and to be call to action for increasing gender equality.

On this wonderful day of “girl power”, the StoneTree team wanted to empower our patients around two important health care issues that affect women.

1. Heart Disease

Some 27% of female deaths in North American are a result of heart disease. This is far more then breast cancer. Add another 8% due to stroke, and another 3% related to diabetes, both of which are related to the same lifestyle issues as heart disease, and this should really get our attention.

Women do not experience symptoms of heart attack quite the same as men, so they tend to get care later then men. Also, when they do get care, they tend to be treated less aggressively than men. The result is a women is twice as likely to die within a month of having a heart attack compared to a man.

What to do? First, you can begin by assessing your risk here. Next, you can focus on preventing the heart disease in the first place with the following five things:

  • Quit smoking. No explanation needed here. If you still smoke, please get help and stop.
  • Exercise daily (Yes, daily.). Try this for a little motivation.
  • Eat a Mediterranean diet. Lots of veggies, fruits, legumes, anti-oxidants and good fats.
  • Get enough sleep. It matters.
  • Keep on-top of your blood work. Not only is it important to know what your cholesterol is doing, but what about your blood sugar? Your inflammatory markers like hs-CRP? Knowing what these numbers are and acting before they become a problem is the best way to prevent the outcomes of heart disease.

2. Women’s Reproductive Health

The screening recommendations for women’s health in Canada have changed in recent years. The Canadian Task Force on Preventive health care looked at the evidence and made recommendations around screening tests and exams and this what they came up with:

In asymptomatic, non-pregnant women with low risk:

  • No pelvic exams
  • No clinical breast exams
  • No teaching of self-breast exams
  • Mammography only after age 50 – every 2-3 years
  • Pap smear only after age 25 – every 3 years

If you’re like many of our patients, you read this and gasp. It is quite a departure from what we grew up with–a full physical exam including PAP every year.

You may also be wondering why. The logic behind the recommendations are two-fold:

  • One of the outcomes of “preventative screening” is that you find things. And sometimes, you find things that would never have turned into a scary disease at all. For example, breasts can be normally lumpy and bumpy. Doing a self exam or clinical exam would find lumps that then need to be tested to make sure they are not cancerous and most of them won’t be. So the screening leads to tests and interventions that cause undue stress and harm to the patient receiving them.
  • All of this testing costs money. In a publicly funded system, we need to make sure that the money we are spending is positively effecting the most people and is not wasteful. Spending money on tests that are mostly benign can be seen as wasteful of a public resource. Another way of looking at this is that when the recommendations change to do a PAP on asymptomatic women from every year to every three years, we know we will miss some cervical cancer (in fact, 3 in 100,000). It’s just that it is less expensive to deal with those three women with disease then it is to screen all women every year to catch those three.

This isn’t necessarily the logic that helps people sleep at night, but it’s the reality of health care in a system with limited resources.

International Women’s Day is about women empowering themselves. If you’re concerned about these recommendations, or would like more frequent screening, talk to your health care professional. Naturopaths are trained and licensed to perform regular Pap smears, and pelvic and breast exams. Our unique Well Woman Visit offers a warm, caring environment for reproductive health screening at the frequency you decide with your doctor.