“My experience with Dr. Gina was 5 star. She had studied the entire 16 page questionnaire I filled out in advance of our first visit, and based on that and her background, already knew much about my physical, emotional, mental and dare I say, spiritual health. I’ve been to many ND’s over the years, the naturopathic principles resonate with me. Dr. Gina was professional, science based, yet what impressed me the most was her intuition and perceptive “read” of my entire being. While several health issues precipitated my visits, what I learned was how deeply our mental, emotional and spiritual health affect the physical-and how empowering that realization was and is.
Truly I can say my experience with Dr. Gina was life changing, and the healing of all of those four has been permanent.
I was also quite impressed with her detecting that my thyroid was “off” although the usual tests did not reveal this. We treated that based on her understanding of other symptoms often overlooked by other doctors (not only MD’s, other ND’s as well). At that time she was also quite active in legislation to legitimize ND’s as primary care physicians, and offered limited office hours.
I felt and feel very fortunate I was able to be seen and treated by her.”
Thank you JD!
It was an honor to speak in London on July 6th at the 2018 International Congress on Naturopathic Medicine on Glutathione, Detoxification and Neuroinflammation. There were 55 countries represented by nearly 600 physician attendees. Great audience, excellent venue. #icnm2018
Here’s a great article about the benefits of spending time in nature.
Being In Nature Benefits Health-But How?
Time spent close to nature is good for our health, numerous studies have shown. What is much harder to establish, however, is how and why this occurs. Now a paper claims the immune system may be the primary pathway through which exposure to the natural world can lead to a wide array of health benefits.
Modern medicine and plumbing – which brings us clean water and removes our waste – have doubled our lifespans, but technology sometimes comes with a cost to our health. It seems urban living is part of that, with research linking lack of access to the open air and relatively pristine environments to an astonishing range of conditions from depression and ADHD to cancer. The effect nature is thought to have on us has earned the name Biophilia. Now a paper attributing these diverse benefits to the immune system has been published in Frontiers of Psychology.
Ming Kuo of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, isn’t jumping to conclusions. As the author of some of the papers indicating these benefits herself, she uses the review article to propose 21 pathways that might connect time in nature with better health.
“While each is likely to contribute to nature’s impacts on health to some degree and under some circumstances, this paper explores the possibility of a central pathway by proposing criteria for identifying such a pathway and illustrating their use,” Kuo writes. “A particular pathway is more likely to be central if it can account for the size of nature’s impacts on health, account for nature’s specific health outcomes, and subsume other pathways.”
Her conclusion is that “enhanced immune functioning emerges as one promising candidate for a central pathway between nature and health. There may be others.”
“Nature doesn’t just have one or two active ingredients. It’s more like a multivitamin that provides us with all sorts of the nutrients we need. That’s how nature can protect us from all these different kinds of diseases – cardiovascular, respiratory, mental health, musculoskeletal, etc. – simultaneously,” Kuo said in a statement.
Kuo suggests that fresh air, sunlight and a beautiful view relax us and turn off our “fight or flight” responses. “When we feel completely safe, our body devotes resources to long-term investments that lead to good health outcomes – growing, reproducing, and building the immune system,” she said. If so, many of the same benefits can be achieved for those who really aren’t the outdoor type by doing what they love, be it reading a good book or spending time with friends. However, Kuo adds these don’t provide elements of good health such as Vitamin D.
Some of Kuo’s previous work has looked at the ways cities can be redesigned to maximize the health benefits provided by relatively natural environments, even if provided in the limited format of urban parks or community gardens. A better understanding of the mechanisms might help us understand how to fit nature into our busy lifestyles, if that is not too much of a contradiction. Still, we hope you’re reading this on a mobile device in a forest or at the beach.
Dr. Gina had one of the top 5% most viewed LinkedIn profiles for 2012! The content on this blog also posts to Linkedin, and it is refreshing to know that the messages we share with you here, about health and medicine, are reaching a large and influential audience.
Dr. Gina and all of us at HealthBridge Medical Center
We love patient testimonials, and want to thank all of our HealthBridge Medical Center patients and DrGina.com customers who take the time to share their experiences with us. Below is a testimonial that just came in, and instantly helped us to renew our strength, inspire us and served as a reminder of why we work so hard to share the message and be a demonstration for you, that Naturopathic Medicine works, even in the most seemingly hopeless situations.
Dear Dr. Gina Nick (Cushman), I’m writing this to thank you for your expertise and for the information you are sharing on your website. I want to tell you my experiences, along with how much you helped me. I was diagnosed as a Manic Depressive in 1979, along with being a alcoholic with a cocaine problem. I was prescribed lithium and at that time I quit drinking and quit cocaine. I took lithium for 30 years but still continued to have bouts of depression which I attribute to hypoglycemia, which I was told I had even before 1979. My kidneys were beginning to be compromised by lithium and although I was scared about going off of it, in March of 2010 I gradually decreased the dosage and finally quit taking it. I found my system to be even more sensitive to the low blood sugar problem and I decided for the first time in my life to start taking it seriously and to eat a high protein, low carb diet. I started to feel better and the depression and confusion started to lift, but it seemed that every time my allergies (inflammation) got bad, the blood sugar issue along with the headaches and feeling so fatigued etc. got worse. I added Vitamin D (4,000 ui/day, Twin Lab, water soluble) to my diet and it helped me a lot, but I ran out one day and bought another brand of Vitamin D3 (not water soluble) and within 3 weeks I found myself really depressed. After analysing it I realized it was the water soluble product that was working for me. I kept thinking though, the inflammation I had was directly related to the hypoglycemia but I didn’t understand why, this is when I ran across the paper you wrote about cytokines. I then started searching for more of your work and I ran across your ‘sicksyndrome.com’ site and took your assessment test. I scored a 17, knowing it would have been much worse if I would have taken it prior to the diet change. I followed your 5 Step Program and started doing the following daily… 1) A tablespoon of Sesame Oil/day. 2) A handful of Walnuts/day. 3) 450 mg of Holy Basil/day. 4) I’m unable take Flaxseed Oil, I tried in the past but it doesn’t seem to digest properly. 5) I don’t know if my DHEA level is low, so I haven’t taken it. 6) I picked up a meditation sound file and I’m meditating at least 5 times per week. I was always so fatigued, along with all the other mental and physical things that went along with what you explained regarding the cytokine overload, and after I started your ‘5 Step Program’ I have to tell you how good I feel mentally and physically and the blood sugar issue is much better also. I hope I didn’t give you to much information, but I am so happy to feel good and I had to tell you how much you have changed my life. I hope I can refer someone to you in the future because I feel indebted to you.
You are what I consider a real Doctor to be.
A new article published in the November/December issue of Psychology Today reveals that gastrointestinal disorders, like infection, inflammation, and IBS cause anxiety and depression, and that probiotics may replace prozac and Valium as drugs of choice for some psychiatric disorders like anxiety and depression. This concept, first introduced over 5 years ago and referred to as Sickness Syndrome, is finally gaining the attention of popular media channels.
For those of you who are experiencing anxiety and depression, there are options available to you that go beyond masking symptoms and address at least one of the underlying causes of why you are feeling the way you do. We see the success of naturopathic medicine in treating anxiety and depression in our medical practice everyday, and treating digestive health is often the first step.
In health and wellness,