This day, 16 years ago, I completed my first Ironman event. It had been a dream of mine to do this race ever since I started doing triathlons in the 1990’s. My friend, Lisa, who I have written about before introduced me to them.
An Ironman consists of a 2.4 mile swim/112 mile bike and 26.2 mile run (3.8 km swim/180 km bike/ 42 km run for my metric friends).
When trying to answer the question, “Why am I the way I am?” it is important to try to identify the root causes of when things began. This is a primary tenet of naturopathic medicine.
For some individuals—and often in the case of adoption—it is important to go back to when you were in utero to understand certain things about yourself.
This past week another famous person committed suicide – Chris Cornell. Chris Cornell’s wife issued a statement which blamed anxiety medicine for his suicide:
“Vicky Cornell, the wife of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, speculated whether his suicide was the result of taking too much of his anxiety medication.
An attorney for the Cornell family,
When I studied Naturopathic Medicine at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine in Toronto, I was asked to be on a steering committee regarding the direction of the program for future students. In the discussion, the subject of mental health and psychology was discussed and one of the students raised a question about bipolar disorder.
Support your menstrual cycle with seeds by Dr. Chris Bjorndal
Do you struggle with mood swings prior to your menstrual cycle? Can you cry at a Kleenix commercial during this time? Or are you extra irritable and slightly more prone to anger just before your period? Remember that most hormone conditions, such as,
“Remember you are going to be with you the longest. It is vital you get the relationship right with yourself first before seeking love from another” ~ Dr. Chris
I think it is important to start this article off with a disclaimer. There is a difference between religion and spirituality and for the purposes of this discussion,
When comparing our modern-day lives with those of our grandparents, it is clear that our environment has changed greatly. Not just the natural world, but in our day-to-day lives as well. We are exposed to hundreds of times more chemicals, toxins, and different forms of radiation than generations past. At the same time chronic disease rates are soaring.
People busy in their lives
Talkin’ on their cell phones
Walking by without catching anyone’s eye
Missing the chance to connect
Through the eyes of another soul
Because they are so focused on the goal
Of achieving, closing the deal, climbing, getting somewhere
That we forget being here
We ignore the human being walking by
Without even batting an eye
That person you passed
Could be dealing with pain
Carrying cement in their soul
The weight of which is crushing them
What would a smile from a stranger mean?
I am in the process of finishing the last chapter of my book: Beyond the Label. This chapter is titled the Myths of Mental Illness – and I am up to 37 myths – whoa! I thought I would share one of these myths in a blog post:
Myth #13 People will look at you differently if you reach out for help.
8 Health Risks of Low Cholesterol – by Dr. Christina Bjorndal and Lachlan Crawford
It’s commonly known that elevated cholesterol in the blood is a risk factor for developing heart problems. In fact, high cholesterol is recognized as a major contributor to cardiovascular disease, the #2 leading cause of death in Canada, second only to cancer1.
The Mood Disorders Society of Canada put out a startling statistic in 2009: 1 in 5 Canadians will experience a mental illness in their lifetime1, including depression, mood disorder, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, attention deficit hyperactive disorders and dementia (with anxiety and depression being the most common by far). If 20% of our population will experience such an event,
When your mental health is in check it means that you have a sense of wellbeing, are able to function in your daily life and feel confident in your abilities. As with your physical health, there are steps you can take to increase your mental health and boost your wellbeing by following these suggestions.
- Connect with others.
In practice, I find there are five common mistakes that people are making with respect to supplements.
- The first is the belief that diet is enough and you don’t need to supplement. For many health conditions, you require more nutrients than the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) suggests. Keep in mind that the RDA is set at recommended levels for healthy individuals and this may not be enough if you have a health concern (ie depression,
Every year, many people make a New Years resolution. Often, the resolution is to vow to do something different that they haven’t been able to achieve – for example – start & commit to an exercise program or lose and keep off x # of pounds. I have two twists on this idea. The first is not waiting until New Years Day to change.
As we approach the end of another year I, like many, reflect on the 12 months that have just past. Questions I ponder are: What health goals did I accomplish? What changes have I made that have improved the quality of my life and that of my family? Where can I gain more balance? What further changes can I make?
Today is the 20th anniversary of a suicide attempt that left me in a coma, on dialysis with kidney failure waiting for a kidney transplant. The months leading up to this attempt were very dark. I had recently been promoted as a Commercial Lender, but unbeknownst to me, the Branch manager “fixed” the commercial portfolios so that the one I managed had all the problem accounts and the one the other portfolio manager had contained all the A+ accounts.
This is a story of friendship. Everyone knows someone who has been diagnosed with cancer, is currently undergoing treatment for cancer, has beat cancer or who has died from it. Along with cancer, everyone knows someone who has been labeled with a mental illness, is currently undergoing treatment for a mental illness, has beat a mental illness or who has died from it.
Have you ever had an “upset” with someone? Perhaps there is someone in your life that is not talking to you or you aren’t talking to? Many patients mention these situations to me, stating that their families are “dysfunctional”. What most of my patients don’t know is that I have had the same experience with my family and friends.
The video stops being shaky after the first minute.
The movie “Feed your Head” was watched in Calgary – and this video shows Dr. Bjorndal answering questions on the spot after the film viewing. The movie is about psychiatrists Abram Hoffer and Humphry Osmond met in Saskatchewan in 1951, and embarked on a quest to do what traditional psychiatry deemed impossible: to find a cure for schizophrenia.
The reason I became a Naturopathic Doctor (ND) is simple: I was sick and tired of being tired and sick. I had a high profile job reporting to a high profile CEO in the investment management industry and had been diagnosed with several health challenges: cancer, depression, anxiety, and high blood pressure due to stress.