Hello, my name is Carolyn. Many of you have seen me in the office at the front desk. Let me take a moment to introduce myself and tell you a bit of my story.
I have been working for Dr. Jamie since the beginning of the year assisting her in the office, with the blog, and at cooking demos. I love working at DuPage Family Wellness. It is a job where I can use my strengths for things that I am passionate about, while learning and growing in the process.
Before working at DuPage Family Wellness my focus was largely homeschooling my three children and running them to their activities (dance team, band, etc.) This was a great experience for a number of years, and we have found the local schools to be wonderful as well.
In addition to family, I enjoy (in no particular order) the fall, art, time with friends, coffee, a good therapist, reading, my dogs, plants that actually grow in my garden, aerial yoga, Thai food, hot tea, and natural living.
My Health Journey
My interest in natural living did not come easily. When I was a mom with young kids my health started to fail pretty dramatically. I had debilitating wandering pain in my body, chronic folliculitis, and recurrent ulcers of the cornea. My labs showed inflammation in my body, but a diagnosis eluded us.
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“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.”― Henry Ford
I love growing in my knowledge and never want to stop learning! With a fairly demanding schedule it has been important for me to be creative in the way I do this. Listening to audio-books is a great way to immerse myself in new ideas while driving and has allowed me to explore many topics.
This week I’ll share with you some of the books I have been listening to lately. Perhaps it will inspire you to read one of these books, or explore a topic you’ve been meaning to look into.
The books range in authors from doctors to navy seals. The topics cover leadership, healing, and vulnerability. But each of these authors is passionate about their story, making for a compelling read!
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown
“The Way of the Essentialist isn't about getting more done in less time. It's about getting only the right things done. It is not a time management strategy, or a productivity technique. It is a systematic discipline for discerning what is absolutely essential, then eliminating everything that is not, so we can make the highest possible contribution towards the things that really matter.
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There is one situation where most experts agree it is best to keep your mouth shut. No, it's not when you have a strong opinion or disagree with a friend. It's simply when you are breathing!
We all know that we need oxygen to survive, but does it really matter if we get that oxygen breathing through our mouth or nose? According to many experts, it does.
Let’s look at the claim that nose breathing is the best way to get your oxygen and explore ways to get the most out of your breath!
Why Nose Breathing Is Best
Science has found many benefits of nose breathing over mouth breathing that most people are not aware of, including:
- Filtering - the cilia in our nose acts as a filter, purifying the air of particles. Further down the respiratory tract, the mucus lined windpipe continues to trap particles before they get to our lungs.
- Regulating - the nasal passages regulate the humidity and temperature of the air we breathe.
- Absorbing Oxygen - the paranasal sinuses produce nitric oxide, a gas that can increase your lungs ability to absorb oxygen by 10-25%.
- Immune Response - nitric oxide also has anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-parasitic, and anti-bacterial properties.
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Omega 3 and Omega 6 are essential fatty acids that the body can not make on its own. Omega 3 is thought to have many health benefits, while omega 6 is known to cause inflammation.
It is very important for your health to have the right balance of these acids. People who are deficient in omega 3 may notice dry patches or bumps on their skin, brittle hair, dandruff, or nails that break easily. Inadequate levels can also negatively affect concentration, mood, energy, and sleep.
While it is possible to achieve this through diet, many professionals recommend getting a good quality supplement. Let’s take a look at the dietary impact of fatty acids and the benefits of getting the balance right to discover if a supplement could be a good choice for you!
Research suggests that our hunter-gatherer ancestors consumed around a 1:1 ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fats. It also indicates that these hunter-gatherers did not struggle with many of the inflammatory diseases that our culture does (heart disease, cancer, diabetes, etc.).
Modern culture’s push for convenience foods, as well as the food industry’s attempt to lower cost has had a significant impact on these ratios. Today, the average ratio of omega 6 and omega 3 is between 10:1 and 20:1, with some individuals as high as 25:1.
If you eat out or consume processed foods it is likely that you are exceeding the amount of omega 6 that your body can handle!
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Last week’s blog looked at the benefits of creating a gratitude practice and explored many ideas for starting one. While some of you were ready to jump into a gratitude practice, the very thought of gratitude may have made others of you want to scream!
Gratitude & Denial Are Not the Same Thing
Thinking about gratefulness doesn’t seem to make sense when you are hurting. That’s okay! If life has been difficult recently, you may be struggling with all kinds of painful emotions. There is a reason you feel the way you do, and pushing these difficult emotions aside is not our goal.
In fact, denying our difficult emotions can actually have a negative effect on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being. It is important to allow yourself to lean into these painful emotions and accept them without judgement.
Leaning into difficult emotions and not avoiding them can actually open you up to a whole new experience. According to Brene Brown, “mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy, and gratitude into our lives.”
Since we know that putting on a happy face and forcing gratefulness will not help us in the long run, let’s explore how to lean into gratefulness while honoring the hard aspects of our lives!
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