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April 2020

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Health

What is integrated medicine?

I am frequently asked by friends and acquaintances what integrative medicine is all about. Since we’ve all grown up in an environment where conventional medicine is the norm, it’s not surprising that this burgeoning field of medicine is at the same time both exciting and confusing to people. The name integrative medicine pretty much describes what this field is about. Essentially, integrative medicine physicians like to integrate both conventional and alternative medicine treatment options into the care of any given patient. I like to explain it as a method of medicine where we evaluate a patient’s therapeutic options. We like to utilize both conventional and alternative medicine options in such a way that we use what we can from both modalities to achieve an optimal health outcome. In order to do this I like to treat the person as a whole. While some believe it is necessary to segment the

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Travel

Why travel after COVID-19 is important

Right now, it’s hard to think about travel when we’re spending our days in our homes and we can barely travel farther than our local grocery store. Imagining travel to sunny destinations or taking a wellness vacation may seem a distant dream.  But traveling will be important for many reasons, not just economic. There have been concerns and re…

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Longevity

Caring for skin as we age

Aging with grace calls for new approaches. JUST as we change through the decades, our skin care regimen needs to change too. At each life stage, our nutritional needs shift. Getting the right nutritional balance can help us to glow from the inside out. By enhancing our overall health through proper nutrition, we also maintain beautiful skin, which is an outward expression of our overall health. Here are some ways we can rethink and refresh our skin care routine to age gracefully and naturally from our twenties to our fifties and beyond. The twenties are a big change This is the decade of leaving home, getting an education and first jobs and, for some, new families. This jump to adulthood can break the bank and the lingering effects of limited cash, new stresses, and fluctuating hormones can leave our skin lacking luster. Refresh your skin care routine with simple tips and

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Health

Treating arthritis with diet and exercise

Seeking options to treat her painful psoriatic arthritis, Johanna Legge, 57, says she found something “by mistake.” Her find was the Paddison Program, which she claims is the sole reason she has returned to good health. Rewind Johanna’s story to early 2013 when she lived in Vancouver. “I would have swollen ankles, which appeared like sprained ankles, and the medical community couldn’t figure out how I could sprain my ankles so badly, and not know when and where I did it,” she recalls. “I had no answer.” The pain was excruciating. “It felt like you put a vice-grip on my ankle. I also didn’t sleep when I had the worst flare-ups.” Legge was an environmental enforcement officer, which required her to do a lot of ladder climbing. Saw mills and pulp mills were among her many industry job sites. “I would go to work and shove ice packs in my

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Travel

Adventures in Colorado

This western state is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts—and those who like to drink beer. GETTING up uncharacteristically early to witness the sunrise over the Garden of the Gods, a striking natural formation in south eastern Colorado. The constantly changing colours of the strange chunks of mountain jutting out of the ground, with Pikes Peak in the back- ground, made the early hour more than worthwhile. But what was amazing was that well before 6 am, dozens of locals from nearby Colorado Springs were parking off the high- way, soon to be engaged in predawn running, rollerblading and cycling. No doubt they then drove into the park to do some sheer cliff scaling, as I’ve since noticed that the Garden of the Gods (usually unnamed) is featured in many outdoor fitness advertisements for the super fit, many of whom we saw scaling sheer cliffs when we strolled through the park

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Health

The importance of collagen

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It is the main structural protein that is required for healthy skin, nails, hair, bones, tendons, muscles, and more. It accounts for around 75% of our skin. Unfortunately, collagen synthesis declines with age. Microtrauma, ultraviolet light exposure, and soft tissue injury can also degrade collagen. Over time, this causes skin to become thin, saggy, dry, and weak, contributing to visible signs of aging such as wrinkles and fine lines. Starting in our 20s, we begin losing about 1% of our collagen each year, according to “Skin anti-aging strategies” in the journal Dermatoendocrinology. Hydrolyzed collagen also helps reduce joint pain associated with osteoarthritis and stimulates collagen formation to maintain healthy bones, cartilage, teeth, and gums. It works with hyaluronic acid, a key component of connective tissue that helps to cushion and lubricate joints, and to provide structure, strength, and resilience in

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Health

Smartphones, watches and health apps

If you have a smartphone (iPhone, Galaxy etc) then you’ve got a very powerful device to help you manage your health! Add in a smartwatch like an AppleWatch or Garmin and you’ve just added a whole new level to health management. For this article, we’ll focus on the iPhone, since Apple is far more dedicated in the development of health apps and tools than any other device company. All of your health information is managed through the Health app on an iPhone. Inside newer iPhones (iPhone8 and up) are sensors that can detect your speed of movement (accelerometer) and a sensor to detect when you climb stairs.  In the Health app, you can also enter your medical information (same for Android phones, but arguably less secure) such as height, weight, medications and conditions. With both iPhone and Android, depending on your province and doctor, you can also have access to

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Health

Collaboration to assist the homeless in Toronto

he COVID-19 pandemic is bringing the operations of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) to Canada for the first time. MSF provides emergency medical humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict, epidemics, disasters, or who do not have access to medical care. A non-profit with medical program in 70 countries, MSF is collaborating with Inner City Health Associates (ICHA), Canada’s largest healthcare organization specializing in the care of people experiencing homelessness, at Toronto’s first COVID-19 recovery site for the homeless. MSF brings its medical, technical and logistical advice and extensive global experience leading responses to major infectious disease outbreaks, as well as a commitment to humanitarian principles. ICHA is the clinical services lead for caring for people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 outbreak. The 400-bed COVID-19 Recovery Site, slated to open soon, is the product of collaboration across many agencies dedicated to caring for people experiencing homelessness who have contracted

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Fitness

The benefits of yoga for runners

For a runner, there is nothing more exhilarating than the rhythm of the breath and the power of the stride. It’s meditation in motion. Whether you are on a leisurely jog or pushing yourself to beat your last time, if you are a runner you are an athlete. Alongside its meditative qualities, running can be one of the most stressful things you can do to your body. This highly compressive, repetitive movement can result in stress and strain. Over time, this continual unilateral movement creates an imbalance, one which yoga can help restore. Yoga and running are a perfect complement, as if the two were created for one another. The meditative quality of running matches the oscillation and meditation that yoga brings with it. At the same time, the practice of yoga provides balance to the runner’s body by engaging the side of the body. The number one thing that

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