Dry Skin Brushing-Secret to Youthful Clear Skin by Dr Faith Christensen

Dry Skin Brushing-Secret to Youthful Clear Skin

Dry Skin brushing has been practiced in many cultures over many years, as part of their daily hygiene routine. The powerful benefits of Dry Skin Brushing encourage healthy, clear, toned skin and decreases cellulite, swelling and varicose veins. Because the skin is one of the major organs of elimination in the body the benefits go beyond the look and feel of the skin. Supporting lymphatic flow and toxin elimination supports health in the whole body. Use your vanity to fuel your motivation to add this 5 minute health routine into your morning.

Benefits of Skin Brushing

  • Assists skin exfoliation and removal of waste:  Removal of dead skin cells opens skin pores, allowing for efficient removal of waste products that in turn allow for healthier new skin cells to grow. Accumulation of toxins in the skin contributes to cellulite, acne and dark spots.
  • Decreases the quantity of bacteria on the skin surface:  Bacteria are normally present on the skin surface. Layers of dead skin provide a habitat for them to flourish, resulting in a toxic load of bacterial debris that the body needs to handle and increases acne breakout.
  • Enhanced lymphatic drainage:  The lymph system removes waste fluids and is an important component in the circulatory system.  Skin brushing invigorates the lymphatic drainage and its effectiveness in eliminating waste thus decreasing swelling and improving skin tone.
  • Enhances and supports venous system:  By helping the veins move blood from the extremities back to the heart, Dry Skin brushing helps improve vein tone and helps prevent varicose veins.
  • Improves the movement of nutrients and oxygen into the skin:  By enhancing the lymphatic and venous drainage, skin brushing improves the movement of nutrients and oxygenated blood into the skin promoting healthy clear radiant skin.
  • Improves skin tone, especially in aging skin:  By removing dead skin cells, stimulating the surface oil and sweat glands and enhancing circulation, the tone and suppleness of aging skin is enhanced.


The best skin brushes are natural vegetable bristle brushes, although a loofa brush or a baby’s hairbrush can also be used. You can find these brushes in most health food stores. Skin brushing is best done on dry skin, prior to your shower or bath. Brushing should be gentle and can be done in short strokes.

  1. Start by brushing on your legs. Brush from your toes towards the center of your body, as this is the direction of venous and lymph flow toward your heart. When finished, your skin will tingle and might be a little red, but do not brush so hard that your skin is bright red.
  2. Next, brush lightly up your stomach and lower back making sure to include your buttocks.
  3. Move to your arms and brush from your fingers to your shoulders in short strokes toward the center of your body.
  4. Finally, lightly brush your shoulders and upper back toward the center of you body.
  5. Do not brush your face, as this skin is very delicate. However, you can lightly brush the back of your neck.

Some of these areas may be more easily reached with a long-handled skin brush.  If you are unable to reach all these areas, just brush what is most comfortable for you to brush.

Areas that should be avoided:

  1. Open wounds
  2. Your face
  3. Areas of skin that are easily damaged
  4. Areas of known skin malignancies or lymphatic malignancies
  5. Open and weeping rashes

Sugar, Stevia, Agave – Oh My! The Truth Behind Your Sweeteners Free Lecture

Sugar, Stevia, Agave – Oh My! The Truth Behind Your Sweeteners

Free Lecture

With the multitude of sugar substitutes available, it can be challenging to know which to reach for in your sweet treats and which to avoid.  This informative lecture will explore the health effects of a wide range of natural and artificial sweeteners and debunk some common myths about “healthy” choices that just may surprise you!

Natural Grocers – Academy

7690 N. Academy Blvd

Colorado Springs, Co

Meeting room in back SW corner of store

Presented by 

Dr. Karly Powell 

Tuesday, May 5th
3:00pm – 4:00pm




Exercise Nutrition for Optimal Performance by Karly Powell, ND

Exercise Nutrition for Optimal Performance

As the warm, sunny days come upon us, more of us will be getting out to enjoy the beautiful outdoors.  Whether you’re a competitive athlete, an outdoor enthusiast, or a weekend warrior, what you eat during your adventures can have significant impact on your performance, your recovery, and your overall health.  Unfortunately, many of the recommended sports nutrition products are unnatural, over-processed, and lacking in high-quality nutrition and are better off avoided.  Let’s review what should be included instead.

First, the foundation of any healthy diet is plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, organic meats, and healthy fats; athletes are no exception to this rule.  The foods that you eat everyday are going to have a far greater impact on your performance and recovery than what you eat in the moments immediately surrounding your workouts. However, when it comes to optimizing performance, there are specific nutrients that can help your body reach its peak performance.


The media has us far too concerned about electrolytes during exercise.  Yes, these minerals are essential to physical activity and regulation of body fluids; however, unless you’re working out vigorously for more than 60 minutes or in high temperatures or humidity, you are mostly losing water and should be able to maintain your electrolyte stores through your diet and adequate hydration.  I recommend replacing the sugary, electrolyte drinks with an extra serving of vegetables (especially leafy greens) and some high-quality mineral salt that day.  Avoid coffee, caffeinated teas, and sodas around your workouts, as these can rapidly deplete mineral and electrolyte stores in the body.

For those extra hot days or long workouts when electrolyte replacement is necessary, reach for coconut water or Knudson’s Recharge; I prefer these to the added chemicals and artificial colors found in the standard electrolyte drinks (Gatorade, Powerade, etc). Or consider making your own! (see my recipe below)


Carbohydrates are absolutely important to maintain energy levels during exercise. During lower intensity exercise your body can use fat as well as carbohydrates for energy, but at higher intensities you are using only carbohydrates.  Your muscles can store sugars (called glycogen) to use during exercise, but that is a limited reserve; most of us have enough sugar stores to sustain about 1:45-2 hours of exercise with optimal glycogen utilization.  Beyond 2 hours, your muscles will begin to breakdown muscle proteins for energy if you are not ingesting carbohydrates for replacement.

Similar to electrolyte drinks, many of the standard calorie replacements designed for athletes are loaded with artificial ingredients, dyes, and flavoring.  Consider fresh fruit, honey sticks, peanut butter sandwiches, or more natural replacement products such as Hammer Heed or Honey Stingers.  Aim for 150-250 calories (about 40-60g of sugar) per hour during exercise; you may see higher intake recommended, but your body can’t really absorb more that than during intense exercise.  If you are exercising beyond 3 hours, consider adding in small amounts of protein and fat; nuts and nut butters work great for this. Many companies make individually-packaged servings, which are great to stick in your pocket on the go.

Add Protein for Recovery

Replenishing carbohydrates and protein after exercise, ideally within 30-60 minutes, will help minimize your recovery time and prepare you for the next activity.  Many athletes tend to put too much emphasis on the protein here; studies show that the ideal recovery meal is a 4-5:1 ratio of carbohydrates to proteins.  This means you should have 160-200 calories (40-50g) for every 40 calories (10g) of protein.  Quinoa or rice with root vegetables, greens, and organic meat is one of my go-to recovery meals for adequate carbohydrates, protein, fats, and electrolytes.

Dr. Karly works with athletes and adventures of all abilities to determine a nutrition plan that is right for your level of activity.  She also uses herbs and supplements to maximize athletic performance, elevation acclimation, and injury recovery. Set up a free 15-minute consult to see how she can help you reach your athletic goals. 

Dr. Karly’s Exercise Elixir:

Combining my love of herbs and outdoor excursions of all types, this herbal electrolyte and calorie replacement drink is one of my go-to’s for long bike rides or days on the trail.  It’s also great to bring along on backpacking trips, as the herbs add little weight to your pack and can be brewed using the heat of the sun in a glass or metal water bottle.


  1. Combine in equal parts (by weight) nettles, hibiscus, alfalfa, oatstraw, red clover loose leaf tea
    1. Add 4 oz tea to 3 cups of boiling water; turn of heat and let stand 15-20 minutes before straining. For cold infusions, add herbs to cold water and let stand in sun for 2-4 hours.  Once your tea is strained and ready to drink, add in the rest of the ingredients
  2. 1 cup 100% cranberry juice (not from concentrate, no sugar added)
  3. 1 scoop Calcium/Magnesium powder (approx. 200/100 mg respectively)
  4. Pinch of mineral or sea salt
  5. 1 Tbls raw, local honey

This will make (2) 16 oz. servings, each providing a broad mineral replacement and 100 calories.  Consume 16 oz per hour during exercise.  If higher calorie intake is needed for high-intensity exercise, consider adding 15-20 grams D-ribose (a sugar that directly supports energy production in the mitochondria of muscle cells) powder and additional honey as needed to meet calorie demands.

Is joint pain holding you back from doing the things you love?

Attend a FREE lecture with Dr. Karly Powell to learn about the many underlying causes of arthritis and how you can use everyday foods and habits to reduce pain, improve function, and get your life back.

Healing Arthritis with Whole Foods

Natural Grocers

7690 N. Academy Blvd

Colorado Springs, CO 80920

March 21st

1:00 – 2:00pm

Forget New Year Resolutions, it’s time for REVOLUTION by Dr Karly Powell

Forget New Year Resolutions, it’s time for REVOLUTION

Dr. Karly Powell 

February is here, which means we’re one month into our transition into 2015 and all the New Years resolutions that come with it.  Have you kept all the promises you made to yourself?  If not, what’s holding you back from becoming a better you?

According to a 2010 poll conducted by the American Psychiatric Association, only 16% of adults report being “very successful” at making health-related improvements such as losing weight (20% success), starting a regular exercise program (15%), eating a healthier diet (10%), and reducing stress (7%).  Those numbers are pretty discouraging.

Fortunately, we know that there are certain characteristics and activities that help that 16% reach their goals; the following steps will set you up for success to not only reach your health and wellness goals, but sustain them long term.

1.  Set clear goals and write them down

Repeated studies have shown that people who set goals are far more likely to reach them.  And it’s not enough just to think about them, you need to write them down; putting something on paper that you can come back to later means making a genuine commitment that you can’t talk yourself out of.   Make your goals as specific as possible (including numbers, timelines, etc.) and ideally write down several goals, both short and long term, both easy and more difficult.  Don’t be afraid to write down one or two that seem beyond your reach; aim high so you have the opportunity to really challenge yourself!  Finally, consider including your underlying motivation that is driving this behavior change, like “I’m committing to a healthier diet to set a good example for my kids.”  Recording why this change is worth it will give you a much-needed motivational boost during the tough days.

2.  Start small

If you want to run a marathon, you don’t start off with the whole 26.2 miles. Start with a very achievable goal (run/walk ½ a mile), and build from there.  If you push for huge changes very quickly, you set yourself up for discouragement, frustration, and overwhelm that leads to backslides or just quitting.   Remember that in order to really impact your health, these changes need to last months, years, or a lifetime.  Pushing yourself hard for 3 weeks isn’t going to mean much if it doesn’t last.

Long-term change is the only path to long-term wellness. Why not get started today? 719-651-4383 or info@springsnaturalmedicine.com

3.  Understand your barriers

What challenges stand in the way of you meeting your goals? Tempting sugary treats in the break room at work?  Not enough time in your day?  Hormone imbalances or other health issues?  Take time to consider what obstacles you might face along your journey and how you plan to tackle them.   When these actually arise along the way, you’ll already have a plan in place to avoid temptation.

4.  Allow yourself some cheat days 

None of us are perfect, and slip-ups are likely to occur.  It’s important that you listen to the needs of your body and mind, and allow yourself some rest when needed. Don’t get discouraged by every small stray in the master plan; instead, revisit your goals, and recommit to doing better tomorrow. If these are happening frequently, it may be time to re-examine your approach and try something new.

5.  Ask for help 

Success is much more likely when we have support.  Find someone to talk to about your process or maybe even join you in the change!   Friends, family, or your naturopathic doctor make great supporters and can mean the difference between meeting your goals and falling short.  Repeated studies show that successful behavioral change involves development of a particular skillset (and willpower is just one small part of this); this skillset is a learned behavior, not inherent. “Psychologists with APA report that, with the right support, individuals can learn how to make lasting lifestyle and behavior changes, regardless of the importance they place on willpower or the influence of stress. With the right guidance, people can build and strengthen the skills they need to make even the toughest lifestyle changes.”

The new year is a great time to recommit to your health. But this year, let’s do things differently.  Let’s say goodbye to the fad diets, to rapid weight loss, to one month of “being good” until you go back to your old habits.  Instead, let’s revolutionize your health, and let’s make it last. If you’re ready to make a change for better health, I can help you create an individualized wellness program that works for your life; I can suggest safe changes that are most likely to bring you successfully to your goals and identify any potential medical barriers that are standing in your way. You won’t believe how easy the change can become when you start to feel better and see yourself getting steadily closer to your goal!

Long-term change is the only path to long-term wellness. Why not get started today? 719-651-4383 or info@springsnaturalmedicine.com


A Healthy New Year by Dr Brita Mutti

Reconsidering How to Heal Yourself in the New Year

By Dr. Brita Mutti ND, FABNO

As the old year ends and a new one approaches, now is a good time to think about your new year’s resolutions and ways to improve your health and your life. When we think about “being healthy” we usually consider our diet, exercising, good sleep habits, taking the vitamins, supplements and prescriptions that we’re told to, and avoiding certain bad habits in our life. And these all are undoubtedly important for good health.

But sometimes, even doing all of these things “right” still can leave us feeling depressed or anxious or stressed. We still may have trouble sleeping. We still may have digestive problems that won’t go away. We still may have a mysterious, persistent rash or bad skin.

Changing the way you eat or how often you exercise or how much sleep you get are not the only things to consider. Are you in a bad relationship? Do you get along with your family? Do you hate your job? Are you pursuing your dreams or have you given up on them? Is your life fulfilling and satisfying?

We don’t usually think of resolving these sorts of issues as a part of being healthy. They can seem too complicated or painful to address, and too distantly related to our health. There are often physical answers for the ailments we all have, but addressing health problems on a deeper level falls to you. The question we all must ask – and answer for – ourselves is, “What does my body need to heal?” Or to put it more specifically, “On what level do I need to heal? Physical? Mental? Emotional? Are there mental or emotional barriers that are preventing physical healing?”

When thinking about optimizing your body’s ability to heal, identifying what contributes to stress in your life is key. Ask yourself questions like:

Am I able to identify when I am stressed? What causes my stress? What does it feel like? Can I identify specific behaviors or physical feelings that I have when I feel stress? What are my red flags? From that awareness, you will be able to begin changing the responses you have to stress.

Beyond specifically thinking about and addressing stress in your life, you may ask yourself other questions to help focus your efforts to change your actions, feelings, and responses to situations. Your list may include questions such as:

  • If I could change one thing in my life, what would it be?
  • If I could let go of one thing, what would it be?
  • If I could forgive myself for one thing, what would it be?
  • Am I bearing someone else’s burden?
  • Am I living someone else’s dream?
  • Do I need to set better personal boundaries?
  • Can I identify the lens thru which I view situations?

Even if you can’t make immediate changes regarding major stressors in your life, being able to identify what is adding stress, anxiety, unhappiness, or feelings of depression to your life is a good first step. You may not be able to remove those causes, but it is important to start developing ways to process and release the bad feelings you have associated with them. Additionally, create a list of things you can do for self-care (such as meditation, self-affirmation, breathing exercises, talking to a friend, going for a walk). Take the time everyday to do at least one thing on your list, even if you are having a good day!

A naturopath can help you address your health concerns, and can assist in developing strategies for making mental and emotional changes to your life that will improve your overall well-being.

Hold the Grains: Eating Paleo to Reverse Inflammation and Disease

Interested in the Paleo diet? Attend Dr. Karly Powell’s FREE nutrition lecture at Natural Grocers. 

Hold the Grains: Eating Paleo to Reverse Inflammation and Disease 

This informative lecture will explore the hormonal and immune mechanisms by which diets of grains, sugars, and processed foods contribute to modern diseases like obesity, depression, aging, and pain. You will learn how to evaluate food quality and practical tips to ditch the grains, lose the weight, and feel your best.

January 10, 2015

1:00 – 2:30pm

No reservations – First come, first seated


Natural Grocers

7690 N. Academy Blvd

Colorado Springs, CO 80920

The Illness of War: Unique Healthcare Needs of Active Duty Military and Veterans by Dr. Karly Powell

It is estimated that approximately one in five U.S. men and women returning from service in Iraq and Afghanistan experience lasting physical and psychological injuries consistent with Post-Deployment Syndrome (PDS).  PDS incorporates all the signs and symptoms experienced as a result of the injury, deprivation, trauma, and stress of combat. While this syndrome is difficult to define, here’s what we know for sure: PDS has a profound and debilitating impact on one’s day-to-day function, our healthcare system is inadequately equipped to deal with the severity of long-term damage, and living with the high level of persistent stress and constant readiness required for war is not sustainable for anyone. While our bodies are well equipped to manage acute stress, living in that state daily for any sustained period of time is not normal and can have significant consequences for our health. Following is an overview of some of the more common manifestations of PDS and how they can be treated using natural medicine.

Insomnia & Fatigue

Difficulty falling or staying asleep, nightmares, daytime fatigue, and poor concentration are some of the most common complaints of soldiers returning from combat.  While these may be a normal reaction to stress, light or inadequate hours of sleep can significantly reduce healing time, as your body does most of its growth and regeneration during deep sleep. In many cases, higher levels of stress hormones coupled with lower levels of normal sleep hormones are to blame.  After identifying your specific imbalances, we can use natural substances to correct hormone imbalances, restore normal diurnal rhythms, and establish restful sleep.

Traumatic Brain Injury & Headaches

Altered brain function secondary to head trauma occurs most often from falls, explosive devices, or motor vehicle accidents. Symptoms range from mild to severe and can include headaches, dizziness, ringing in the ear, fatigue, or impairments in attention and memory; when these symptoms are long lasting, the term “post-concussive syndrome” is used.  After initial stabilization and acute traumas have been resolved, we can use functional, in-office neurological testing to identify which areas of the brain have been harmed and are not functioning at full capacity.  This testing often reveals minor dysfunction or imbalances that cannot be identified on MRI or CAT scans. These can be corrected using 10-30 minutes of rehabilitation exercises daily in combination with targeted dietary and herbal therapies.

Chronic Pain 

Many studies have confirmed that people living with chronic pain or PDS have altered communication between their brain and their area of pain.  This phenomenon is termed central sensitization, which means that your brain is more sensitive to pain in that area compared to your pre-injury state and to other areas of your body. While this can result from a physical trauma to the area, it may also occur secondary to significant stress, trauma, grief, frustration about the inability to complete your duties, or hopelessness about ever getting better. Similar mechanisms also explain the presence of lasting pain after an amputation.  The good news is that in both of these cases, the solution is fairly simple: change the way your brain thinks about your area of pain.  Our nervous system is highly adaptable, changing every 2-3 days in response to it’s input and environment, which means we can change old patterns of pain – and we can do so quickly. Learning about why you have pain and the mechanisms by which it is produced is the first step, and is effective at reducing pain in 1/3rd of people with chronic pain.  Dr. Powell specializes in pain reduction strategies, using hands-on manual therapy and home rehabilitation exercises to reduce the sensitivity of your nervous system and make lasting reductions in pain.

Mood Changes

The silent injuries can sometimes have the most lasting consequences on return to civilian life. Increasing feelings of irritability, anger, depression, anxiety, and slowed thinking are just some of the commonly noted changes.  These mood changes may come with labels like “Adjustment Disorder”, “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder” (PTSD), “Generalized Anxiety Disorder”, or a myriad of other complex names and acronyms.  While these diagnostic terms are valuable to understanding your individual symptoms, the underlying cause – and therefore the treatment – are often the same. Most commonly, we see that neurotransmitters, the chemical communicators of your brain, and/or hormone levels are out of balance.  Using specialized testing, we can often identify a physiological cause of the symptoms you experience and use gentle therapies like herbs, nutrients, or bio-identical hormones to correct them. In cases where no biochemical cause is found, functional neurological rehabilitation exercises can be used to identify and correct areas of the brain and nervous system that are not functioning optimally. While more traditional treatments, like behavioral therapy and coping techniques, can be helpful to manage mood changes, full recovery is difficult without addressing any underlying physiological imbalances present.

Hazardous Material Exposure

Soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan have been exposed to an array of potentially hazardous chemical and biological substances, including dust and sand particulate matter, shrapnel, industry solvents, asbestos, PCB’s, chemical warfare agents, and uranium (from military tank armor). Unfortunately, this is not an exhaustive list. Even in those who have recovered from acute effects of these agents, our bodies often harbor these toxic substances in our tissues, resulting in skin disease, respiratory illness, reduced exercise tolerance, fatigue, brain fog, allergies, and frequent colds and flus.  Medical detoxification and, when necessary, chelation of heavy metals, can help your body clear these substances and prevent the long-term consequences of these toxins.

This is certainly not an exhaustive discussion of symptoms that service members experience as a result of combat stress.  But whatever symptoms you experience, we know that refocusing your attention away from the symptoms and towards recovery is a critical first step.  Whether you have a diagnosis of PDS or not, your symptoms are real and may have an underlying physiologic explanation that cannot be detected by conventional labs and imaging. Even if your symptoms have been present for years or are increasing in severity, these patterns are not set in stone.  Our bodies and minds are highly adaptable, and these patterns can be changed.  It’s never too early or too late to take back control of your life.  The best time to start is right now.

We offer a 20% discount off the first office visit (excludes labs and supplements) for all active-duty military. Schedule a free 15-minute consult to see how naturopathic medicine can help with your recovery.

Dr Karly Powell to Join Springs Natural Medicine

Karly Powell,ND Colorado Springs Naturopath
Karly Powell,ND
Colorado Springs Naturopath

We are excited to welcome Dr Karly Powell to Springs Natural Medicine!

Dr. Karly Powell is a registered naturopathic doctor offering care for the whole family. Combining the best of modern medicine with traditional natural therapies, she works in partnership with each patient to guide him or her toward their highest wellness goals.  In addition to general family practice, Dr. Powell’s expertise includes chronic disease management, neurological disorders (like headaches, vertigo, and chronic pain), depression and anxiety, and autoimmune conditions. She also enjoys working with athletes on performance enhancement and injury recovery and prevention.

Dr. Powell’s journey started at a young age with a deep interest in health and medicine.  After several years exploring a multitude of conventional medical specialties, she was delighted to discover that naturopathic medicine had been the missing piece to her puzzle all along. Looking at all aspects of a person’s health while integrating the emotional and physical body, she uses gentle therapies to not only address disease but work toward genuine wellness. Dr. Powell takes time to ensure each patient understands how they arrived at their present state of health and all the options available to get themselves to a better place.  Her aim is to empower patients to take control of their own health by reviewing all the conventional and alternative medical options and how everyday habits can add up to big changes in your health.


Dr. Powell earned her bachelor’s degree in Physiology with a minor in Exercise and Sport Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

She earned her medical degree from the National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) in Portland, OR. Upon graduation, Dr. Powell was selected for NCNM’s highly competitive one-year residency position, where she trained under some of the leading experts in the field of naturopathic and integrative medicine.  During her internship she completed several specialty rotations, including six months in heart and lung conditions, 100 hours in coursework and apprenticeships in functional neurology, and advanced training in herbal medicine, fertility, weight loss, and sports medicine.

Seasonal Affective Disorder Treated Naturally by Grace Calihan, ND, LAc


Fall is officially here, with shorter days and longer nights.  For some, this means some pretty significant mood changes.  Seasonal Affective Disorder affects an estimated 6-10% of the population.  Women are 4 times more likely to be affected, and it’s a condition that is most often seen in young adults.  Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is more than just the winter blues.  Symptoms of depression, such as low motivation, sleepiness, sadness, carbohydrate cravings, decreased sex drive, and avoidance of others, are triggered by the lack of sunlight that comes with the season change.

The mechanism explaining why SAD can happen is unclear.  The lack of sunlight seems to disrupt the body’s ability to self regulate sleep and mood.  The extra dark may affect levels of serotonin (our “feel good” neurotransmitter) and melatonin (the neurotransmitter that regulates sleep).  The regulation of cortisol by the adrenal glands may also play a role.

SAD can also mimic other conditions.  If you are concerned that you might have SAD, make sure your naturopathic doctor checks for an underactive thyroid, hypoglycemia, and chronic viral infections before you are diagnosed with SAD.

The good news about SAD is that there are many naturopathic approaches to turning it around.  First and foremost, we need to start tricking the body into thinking that there is more sunlight than the forecast indicates.  Plenty of research suggests that waking up to 30 minutes of exposure to 2,500-10,000 lux can decrease and even eliminate symptoms of SAD.  This is done at home with a light box, set at eye level first thing in the morning.  There is no need to look directly into the light, simply placing the lamp or light box nearby as you go through your morning routine is sufficient.  There are many light boxes on the market, I like the LightPhoria Energy Light, by Sphere because it’s so affordable.

There are also plenty of nutritional and herbal interventions.  Increasing antioxidants by eating the colorful vegetables of fall harvest can support the adrenal glands and increase energy.  High quality protein sources provide amino acids, which are the building blocks of neurotransmitters (like serotonin and melatonin).  Additionally, herbal adrenal support can be very helpful.  Using herbs like Rhodiola rosea or Astragalus membranaceus daily can regulate cortisol, the stress hormone that alerts the body to daytime.  If you notice that you are having trouble sleeping at night during the season changes, you can replenish your melatonin by taking 1-2mg at bedtime.  There are also dietary and herbal interventions to support serotonin.  L-tryptophan is a specific amino acid that serves as a building block for serotonin.  It can be used supplementally to help balance those levels.  Another approach is with St. John’s Wort, or Hypericum perforatum.  However, addressing neurotransmitters like serotonin should be done under the direct care of your naturopathic doctor.

In fact, I would encourage everyone to check in with his or her naturopath about mood and brain health.  There are resources that can help assess levels of these essential brain chemicals and many naturopathic approaches to treating any imbalances even if you are on an antidepressant or anti anxiety medication.  No one should be walking into winter feeling low.  Looking forward to working with you this fall!