Are your Headaches a Pain in Your Neck?

Are your Headaches a Pain in Your Neck?

Are your Headaches a Pain in Your Neck? A man walks into his bedroom holding two aspirin and a glass of water. His wife asks, “What’s that for?” The man replies, “It’s for your headache!” “I don’t have a headache,” says the wife. The man replies “Gotcha!” The World Health Organization estimates that 47% of people in the US experience at least one headache throughout the year.1 I would guess that the actual number of people who experience headaches yearly is much higher than that. Headaches are an issue that I have seen with increasing frequency in my practice. They have become so common that many times people don’t consider them a condition, and they never tell me about them until I specifically ask if they have headaches. I must emphasize that no matter how common headaches are, they are still a matter that deserves our attention. First, it’s important that we begin to understand what really causes headaches. Most importantly, what can be done to help those suffering from frequent headaches without them having to run for a bottle of pills every time? The brain itself is insensitive to pain. Therefore, headache pain usually occurs in the tissues covering the brain, the attaching structures at the base of the brain, or the muscles and blood vessels around the scalp, face and neck. The International Headache Society lists 129 different types of headaches, but the general categories are tension, cluster, and migraine. The associated pain is described as sharp, stabbing, dull, throbbing, and vice-like. Different types of physical, chemical, and emotional stress – including fatigue, worry, noise, fluorescent lights,...
Counseling to Maximize Human Potential

Counseling to Maximize Human Potential

Counseling to Maximize Human Potential Our bodies are integrated systems, constantly communicating and transferring information to function and accomplish a goal. In this integrated process, our mind shapes the outcome for most of what we do, which can be led or heavily influenced by our emotions and other physiological processes in our body. The relationship between physiological changes in the body, and change in the mind is reciprocating. What goes into our body, whether it is food that affects our blood glucose, hormones, digestive system and mind, or negative thoughts that affect our belief system, identity, emotions, decisions and actions, all make a difference in how we feel, who we are and our overall experience of life. Our personal feelings, beliefs, thoughts and actions impact our sense of self, experience of life and relationships with others. Much of the meaning and sense of fulfillment in life comes from our beliefs and relationships with our self and others. Objective perspective and a listening ear are often needed to reflect on and assess what we find meaning in, the choices we make, and what we believe of our self and world. Counseling is a service that can meet a persons emotional and psychological needs based on developing a trusting and safe relationship where the struggles and thoughts of life can be reflected on, processed and integrated. Counseling is a service that provides an opportunity of growth, challenge and empowerment for every individual. Through developing a trusting and safe relationship, one is encouraged and empowered to express, explore and discover their unique purpose, identity and struggles. Counseling adds meaning and joy to...

Adrenal Fatigue – Kelsey Becker

Adrenal Fatigue -Kelsey’s Story It was a Saturday night when we picked our daughter Kelsey up from the airport. She had just returned from Guatemala, her second mission trip with our church. She had been so excited to go because she was going on her own – without us this time. As a young adult she wanted to prove to herself and to us she could do this independently. After we came home we talked to her about the trip. As she was talking, it seemed as if she just couldn’t collect her thoughts. It seemed as if her thoughts were so disjointed. Her Dad, Wayne, and I attributed it to her being overly excited to share her mission experience. So, we blew it off and thought we’d hear more about it when she was rested. The following morning another perplexing thing happened. We were at church and the group from the mission trip gave a presentation sharing their travel experiences. The next thing I knew Kelsey ran out of the room crying, she couldn’t get herself under control. Yes, she is sensitive, but this was a little uncharacteristic of her. We talked in the hall and she still couldn’t seem to express what she was thinking. It all seemed a little odd. Wayne and I tried to make sense of it by saying it must be due to lack of sleep. Kelsey had left on this trip with so much energy and excitement. She had come such a long way in the past few years. While living at home, she had started school at the community college, which...

Gluten Free Raw Pad Thai Noodles

Gluten free raw pad thai “noodles”. Made with zuchinni and kelp noodles. Gluten Free Raw Pad Thai 2014-04-16 20:53:37 Kelp noodles combined with spiralized zucchini noodles tossed with a spicy pad thai sauce Write a review Save Recipe Print For the sauce ½ cup coconut milk ¼ cup raw almond butter (I like Artisana or Maranatha brands) ½ t. minced jalapeno ½ T. freshly grated ginger 1 T. coconut aminos ½ T. miso ½ t. crushed garlic 1 T. lime juice 1-2 Medjool dates pitted and chopped tiny pinch of cayenne Noodles Zucchini noodles spiralized Kelp noodles Fresh chopped cilantro Shredded carrots Red bell pepper strips Raw cashews Sauce Place all ingredients in high-speed blender and blend on high until all the ingredients become creamy and smooth. Taste and adjust flavors if necessary. Noodles Sprinkle cut kelp noodles, cilantro, carrots, peppers and cashews over zucchini noodles and toss with pad thai sauce. By Heather McDonough Prairie Health & Wellness...

Gluten Free Raw Brownie Bites

These gluten free brownie bites require no baking, kids will gobble them up! Raw Brownie Bites 2014-04-16 20:37:16 Serves 4 Gluten free raw brownie bites Write a review Save Recipe Print Total Time 10 min Total Time 10 min Ingredients 1 c. raw pecans 1/2 c. raw cashews 1/2 c. hemp hearts 5-6 tbsp cacao powder 6-8 soft medjool dates 2 tbsp maple syrup, yacon syrup or agave nectar ½ t. Himalayan sea salt Instructions In a food processor fitted with the S-blade, blend the pecans, cashews, hemp hearts and cacao powder into a fine meal. Add the dates, syrup and salt; blend 45-60 seconds, or until dough starts to form. Using a medium sized cookie scoop, drop the dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Freeze for 20 minutes then press with a fork. Transfer to an air-tight container and store in the freezer. Notes You can substitute ANY nuts of your choice for the pecans and cashews. Almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, or hazelnuts will all work By Heather McDonough Prairie Health & Wellness...

Gluten Free Raw Curried Noodles

Gluten Free Raw Curried Noodles Raw Curried Noodles 2014-04-16 20:07:04 Serves 4 Gluten free raw curried noodles Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 10 min Prep Time 10 min Ingredients 3 T. raw almond butter 3 T. coconut aminos 1 t. raw agave or coconut nectar 3 t. curry powder 3 medium zucchini unsweetened shredded coconut raisins chopped fresh cilantro Instructions Combine almond butter, coconut aminos and curry powder in large bowl, and whisk until well mixed. Set aside. Trim ends off zucchini and using a veggie spiralizer, cut into spaghetti style noodles. Notes Serve “noodles” with sauce, raisins, coconut and cilantro. By Heather McDonough Prairie Health & Wellness...

Zucchini Noodles with Pesto

Zucchini noodles with Pesto 2014-04-15 22:17:59 Serves 4 This gluten free alternative to noodles is very simple to make and is delicious. Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 10 min Total Time 10 min Prep Time 10 min Total Time 10 min Ingredients 1 small zucchini (spiralized) pesto raw parmesan chopped organic tomatoes Spinach basil pesto 1 cup raw walnuts 1 clamshell pack of organic basil 1 garlic clove 2 cups organic baby spinach 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 t. black pepper Olive Oil to consistency Raw Parmesan "Cheeze" 1 cup Brazil Nuts 1 t. chopped garlic ½ t. salt 1 T. nutritional yeast For the Pesto Process walnuts, basil, spinach and garlic in the food processor until combined. (You may need to scrape down the sides once or twice). Add ,salt and pepper and pulse a few times. With motor running, pour in olive oil until a desired consistency is reached. Add more salt if necessary. (You want to aim for a consistency somewhere in between a liquid and a paste). For the Raw "Parmesan Cheeze" Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until light and fluffy. Refrigerate for up to 5 days, and enjoy as a topping on any savory dish! Notes The pesto is great as a dip, a sauce, or a spread. By Heather McDonough Prairie Health & Wellness...

Direct Care vs Insurance

For those of us that have high deductible insurance plans (my family and I have a bronze plan that combines a Health Savings Account with a HDHP) direct care just makes sense. Less cost up front means more money in your pocket. One question we get quite often is “Since I have good coverage, won’t direct care cost me more?” In the example below we show how direct care, even for those that have great coverage, can save money. Insurance* Direct Pay Moderate Visit $108.00 $90.00 Copay** $30.00 $0.00 CBC $12.83 $10.00 CMP $16.00 $12.00 Total $166.83 $112.00  80/20 (in network)  $57.37**  $56.00  50/50 (out of network) Difference: $1.37 *Representative of one of the largest insurance providers in KS **Copay not reimburse-able and doesn’t count toward deductible We’re excited to offer good value and affordable care in a simplified...
Eat Food

Eat Food

This is a talk given by one of my favorite writers when it comes to food, Michael Pollan. He started with the Omnivore’s Dilemma and then wrote Food Rules (a sort of instruction manual for eating). He is an American author, journalist, activist, and professor of journalism at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.  A 2006 New York Times book review describes him as a “liberal foodie intellectual.”   I frequently share his 3 rules of eating: Eat food* Mostly plants Not much of it *I remind people that real food generally doesn’t come out of a box out of a can out of a bag over a counter through a window And… if it have more than 5 ingredients you should really question whether its food. There are some exceptions to those rules (frozen fruit and veggies from a bag etc), but for the most part that will be all you need to know about how to eat. I found one particular fact that he points out interesting: poor women that cooked their own food were healthier than wealthy women that didn’t. We need to get back to food that’s cooked by us rather than food that’s cooked by corporations. Although I haven’t read his latest book, Cooked: A Natural History of  Transformation, I plan to very soon. Oh, and for those of you disturbed by the pesticide used on potatoes, I found a link to the chemical profile of...
Stress Check

Stress Check

Stress Check from Azumio  is pretty simple. It uses the camera on your phone to take your pulse and then analyzes the variability of your heart rate to calculate your level of stress. Research evidence increasingly links high heart rate variability to good health and a high level of fitness, while decreased HRV is linked to stress, fatigue and even burnout. Algorithms used to analyze HRV follow recommendations of European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and the North American Society of Pacing and Electrophysiology (NASPE). A number of studies have shown that HRV is an important indicator of both physiological resiliency and behavioral flexibility, reflecting an individual’s capacity to adapt effectively to stress and environmental demands. It has become apparent that while a large degree of instability is detrimental to efficient physiological functioning, too little variation can also be pathological. An optimal level of variability within an organism’s key regulatory systems is critical to the inherent flexibility and adaptability that epitomize healthy function. This principle is aptly illustrated by a simple analogy: just as the shifting stance of a tennis player about to receive a serve may facilitate swift adaptation, in healthy individuals, the heart remains similarly responsive and resilient, primed and ready to react when needed. Most of us know when we are stressed. But we don’t always know how to relieve that stress. One way to use this application is to take a measurement and work on ways to decrease the effect of stress on your body. In future posts we’ll talk more about how you can use this biofeedback in conjunction with deep breathing exercises. There are more...