Integrative Health Blog

6 Habits for a Healthy Microbiota

Posted by on Mon, Jan 21, 2019

There are more and more studies being done to research the body’s microbiota. Microbiota refers to all the microorganisms that are found in an environment. In the human body, the gut, the vagina, the sinuses, the mouth, the skin, the blood, etc. each have their own microbiota which includes bacteria, viruses, fungi and other single celled animals.

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Tags: microbiome

Dr. Randy Gastwirt, Naturopathic Physician, Joins National Integrated Health Associates

Posted by on Tue, Jan 15, 2019

National Integrated Health Associates is pleased to welcome Dr. Randy Gastwirt, N.D., PhD., to the medical team.

Dr. Randy Gastwirt is a Naturopathic Physician in the Washington, D.C. metro area. He is trained in naturopathic medicine, herbal medicine, physical medicine, biofeedback therapy and functional nutrition.

Dr. Gastwirt’s unique blend of natural and conventional medicine reflects his diverse educational background.  He received his Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree from Bastyr University in San Diego, California – an institution recognized as a leader in the education of natural medicine. Prior to Bastyr University, Dr. Gastwirt earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from Pomona College and a PhD in Biomedical Science from University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine. He worked in research both as at post-doctoral fellow at UC San Diego and the VA hospital and served as Associate Director for research at a biotechnology company prior to his transition into Naturopathic Medicine. 

Naturopathic Medicine

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Natural Remedies for Colds and Viruses

Posted by on Tue, Jan 08, 2019

Cold and virus season can come on fast! The average cold lasts 2 weeks and can leave you feeling grouchy, tired and can sometimes turn into pneumonia or bronchitis, especially if your health is compromised in any way. Consider having these natural items on hand in case symptoms strike or if you are traveling and need an extra boost to the immune system.

Homeopathic remedies are especially helpful if taken at the first sign of a cold and may even help speed recovery. The suggested supplement dosages here are for adults, but always check with your physician first.

1)  Vitamin A is needed for the proper functioning of the eyes, skin, immune system and many other functions in the body. Vitamin A supplementation with 25000 units/day for 3 days is the adult dosage.

2)  Zinc is a mineral that can be effective for shortening the duration of colds, especially when taken at the first sign of illness. It is helpful for the boosting the immune system, fighting infection and wound healing. Optizinc suggested dosage 20 mg. - 4 a day until symptoms improve.

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Tags: natural remedies

Top Detoxification Therapies for Cleansing and Rejuvenation

Posted by on Wed, Jan 02, 2019

Integrative medicine recognizes detoxification as the first important step in restoring the body to a natural, balanced, healthy state. While the amazing human body naturally removes most of the harmful things we may encounter- the toxic load may accumulate over years of eating less-than-nutritious processed food, drinking alcohol, using personal care products or cleaning products full of chemicals, and exposure to pollutants. This burden of potentially harmful substances can take its toll on an otherwise healthy person.  

National Integrated Health Associates has devoted an entire area to detoxification at the integrative medical and dental center in Washington, D.C.  The Rejuvenation & Detoxification Spa has several state-of-the-art detoxification therapies that can be used to enhance your natural detoxification and promote health and overall wellbeing.

Far Infrared Sauna

The far infrared sauna uses infrared rays which penetrate deep, heating the muscular tissues and the internal organs and releasing toxins through the sweat glands and skin without burdening the liver and kidneys. Unlike traditional saunas, infrared radiation directly heats the occupant without heating the surrounding air. This can induce 2-3 times the sweat volume of a traditional sauna while operating at lower, more comfortable temperatures. The skin is the largest detox organ, and as the pores open the skin sheds dead cells, leaving the skin glowing and clean. Infrared rays may help relieve pain, stiff joints, tension, fatigue and help control weight.

Oxygen Steam Cabinet

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Tags: detoxification

Chlorella, a Natural Superfood with Amazing Benefits

Posted by on Thu, Dec 13, 2018

Chlorella is the near-perfect food for natural detoxification

Chlorella is a single cell algae, grown in fresh water, and has been around since ancient times. Chlorella is a natural chelator, meaning it has the ability to bind and remove heavy metals from the body.  It is helpful as a food-based green drink for detoxing heavy metals (such as mercury, lead, cadmium), toxic chemicals, mold, Lyme and other toxins from the body. Chlorella also has a high protein content, is rich in vitamins and minerals and is a good source of essential amino acids, which help to promote health.

What Makes Chlorella a Superfood 

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Tags: chlorella, detoxification, heavy metal detoxification

Are You Sensitive to Electrosmog? Ways to Minimize Exposure to EMF

Posted by on Thu, Dec 06, 2018

Electrosmog is the electromagnetic radiation and electromagnetic frequencies that are emitted from cell phones, cordless phones, Wi-Fi, wireless devices, wireless baby monitors, electricity, cell towers, high power lines etc. that are ever present and increasing in our technological world.

Electromagnetic fields (EMF) pose possible human health risks and the effects of chronic exposure may not be known for years. Some people are more sensitive to electrosmog than others, and women seem to be more affected than men, although we do not know why. More research and studies need to be done, but the World Health Organization (WHO) reported as far back as 2005 that “For some time a number of individuals have reported a variety of health problems that they relate to exposure to EMF. “ 1

Steps can be taken to minimize exposure to electrosmog in adults and children, while still living within the internet-connected world.  It may be especially important to reduce exposure for children as their brains grow and develop, and for pregnant women, but we should all be aware of the possible risks of long term exposure and do what we can to protect ourselves.

What You Should Know about Electrosmog and EMF

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Tags: EMFs

How to Heal Your Power of Now

Posted by on Thu, Nov 29, 2018


I trust you are familiar with Eckhart Tolle’s book, The Power of Now, which has had a tremendous impact on people’s spiritual lives and understanding around the world. From what I understand, from having read, not that book, but a different book by Tolle, the main concept is that we need to be focused on the present moment, because that is what we have.

The past is a memory, the future is a dream, and the present is a gift, that’s why we call it a present.*  We cannot change the past, and the only way to improve the future is by focusing on who we are being in the present moment, and what we are thinking, believing, and doing right now. 

When I work with clients, I often delve into experiences in their past with them, in order to help them in the present and future. Recently, a new client asked me, “But if we focus on the past, won’t that reduce the power of now?”

What a great question!

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Tags: energy therapies, meditation

Genetic Testing- A New Way to Influence How Kids Turn Out?

Posted by on Wed, Nov 21, 2018


A famous best-seller, The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do, by psychologist Judith Rich Harris, has been circulating for 20 years.  Based on amassed studies, parental influences on children matter a lot less than peer group influences, and they both matter less than genetic factors.  Parents are advised to not blame themselves if their children don’t become Rhodes scholars, because controlling peer group influences is difficult and controlling genetic expression is impossible.  Until the last few years, parents were expected to do the best they can to control the friends that their children hang out with, and hope that their children’s genes will line up well enough to someday produce a productive, happy member of society.

Power to Change the Things We Can

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Tags: methylation, genetics, chlldren's health

What Patients Say About LDA, Low Dose Allergy Immunotherapy for Seasonal Allergy Treatment

Posted by on Tue, Nov 13, 2018

"I was skeptical about LDA treatment because it sounded too good to be true, but I was desperate when my allergy medication wasn't enough.  Two LDA shots into treatment and I haven't taken Allegra, Zyrtec or Benadryl since!  Cherry blossoms are in full bloom and my allergy medication and inhaler are still in my pocket! Haven't needed to pull them out and I can hardly believe it.  Thank you!"

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Tags: allergies, LDA immunotherapy

The Benefits of Oncology Massage

Posted by on Tue, Nov 06, 2018

The power of touch has a special resonance with me.  My first experience was when I had a biopsy done for breast cancer.  I was in the prone position so I could not see the person.  The biopsy was done on my left breast and was painful.  The person assisting the physician was a nurse and she put her hand on mine and was present.  I could feel her presence with her hand.  This made a difference because I felt reassured and not alone.  I felt a sense of compassion.  This made the experience more bearable. 

Oncology massage is based on compassion. Oncology massage is a lighter, softer touch than regular massage, and designed to relax the nervous system. During cancer treatment our bodies sometimes forget the feeling of being relaxed. Massage is a way in which clients can visit themselves, to acknowledge where they are and what they are feeling. The benefits of oncology massage done correctly are relaxation, better sleep, reduced anxiety and pain, and less fatigue and nausea. 

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Tags: cancer, massage