Immune Vitamins

18 Oct 2019 Complementary

The immune system is an ever talked about topic in our modern world with auto-immune conditions on the rise and kids at school getting sick every other week. It is important for everyone to know which vitamins, herbs and minerals are most essential to keep us healthy.

We have 1 child that is school age and it is important to me that she stay as healthy as possible and doesn’t bring everything home to her younger sister. We also work in health care where sick kids are coming to see us because they are sick. So how do I stay healthy during the year with cold and flu season especially since I am putting myself in the line of fire? I think this important for you to know and while you may not have a 2 year old coughing in your face, you might have the sick co-worker next to you that also covers their mouth like a two year old.

With supplements, vitamins, homeopathy and herbs all promising to help the immune system -which are the best and most valuable herbs?

Where do I start to help have a baseline healthy immune system?
Make sure you have your basic nutrients in check. This is done in our office through a vitamin analysis testing and we use Spectracell laboratories to determine the deficiencies you are faced with today. The test goes over vitamins, minerals, amino acids, antioxidants and a few other important facts.
Which Vitamins are best for baseline health if I am not testing?
Without testing, this is just a guess, but we do have an idea of the most common vitamin deficiencies that occur in our country today and here is a small list:
Vitamin D, Folate, Vitamin B12, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B1, Zinc, N-Acetyl Cysteine, Gluthione, Magnesium, Calcium and Vitamin E. (long list huh!)
Which one is best for my immune system specifically?
Vitamin D – Does some many things and is famous for bone health and calcium absorption but it also supports immune function, brain function lung health and so much more.
Zinc – Supports immune function, enzyme function and wound healing.
N-Acetyl Cysteine – decreases inflammation, decrease muscle fatigue, liver detoxification and immune function.
What Herbs can I take if I keep getting sick that will support my immune system?
We use the term support since some herbs actually boost your immune system and this can be bad when you use them for too long they can flair up your allergies.
Elderberry – Is a powerful antioxidant that fights cold and flu symptoms while also reducing inflammation and protecting the heart. The berries and the flower are used in most preparations.
Astragalus – Is an ancient long used herb meaning it helps the body adapt to stressors. It is an adaptogenic so it addresses in this case deep cellular disease or recurrent illness as well as a cold or flu.
Arabinogalactan – Is a herb that has been consumed for thousands of years and most commonly comes from the North American Larch trees it is show to naturally improve resistant to infection by positively influencing the Natural Killer cells in our immune system.
Reishi Mushrooms – Is been commonly used once someone gets sick but they have found that it supports and improves the function of our lymphocytes to help fit and prevent infection from occurring.
Ok I have been trying to support my immune system but I still got sick what now?
If you get sick, we employ both herbs and vitamins that are anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral to heal your body and get you back in action.
Herbs and vitamins: Andrographis, echinacea, Monolaurin, berberine, coptis, garlic, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, Zinc.  These herbs we have in our office in different varying blends based on the cold and flu symptoms you have. For instance-  do you have a cough and chest cold, is it sinus or do you have a high fever. Most of these herbs are given to adults or older children.
My list for the little ones is different and they may also need something in a liquid form as we don’t get good at swallowing pills till around 13 years of age.
Elderberry, Rosehips, Astragalus, Arbinogalactan, echinacea, Mullein, &ginger.
When you get sick consider reaching for an herbal biotic or going to your functional medicine doctor, Naturopath or Chiropractor if they are trained instead of taking antibiotic which destroy your gut and has other unpleasant side effects. We love seeing you and the little ones whether they are sick or well; keeping you in a healthy state is our passion.

Reducing stress as we get Back to school

18 Oct 2019 Complementary

Get a system in place that works for you on a daily basis.
Your kids are old enough in first grade and maybe even kindergarten to put their clothes on, so lay them out the night before or let them pick them out. This can be one less item for mom to scramble with in the morning. Be detailed; if they are wearing tennis shoes, make sure the outfit has socks. Get their backpack all set up and lay it by the door. We have a hook where it goes in our house so everything is easy to pick up as we leave the house.
Make lunches the night before and as you use up lunch items, write them down on your grocery list. Use Pinterest to help you utilize healthy foods in your kids lunches as well. We moved to a bento box style lunch box to reduce the number of sandwich’s and help us mix it up.
Get the school calendar out and input it into your home calendar.
This way you can have baby-sitting lined up for when you need it and also prepares you for field trips, teacher training days so you/your spouse can plan for time off work.
Get your kids into bed earlier than summertime.
This may sound mundane; but if they get adequate rest then you won’t have to drag them out of bed.
If you can get your planning done for the next day and get the kids into bed at a reasonable time- then mom and dad will be healthier and even happier.
Plan a baby sitter for Date night.
The school year is busy and kids have after school activities such as music lessons, swimming or soccer; but studies have shown happy families begin with happy mom’s and dad’s and reconnecting with your relationship is essential to your health and happiness and your kids as well.
Your date night doesn’t have to be too extravagant. Make it simple since you have to work tomorrow and take care of kids. Take the time to chat with each other often to keep connected.
Also consider doing what’s called “ home dates.” Check out this website that has some great ones.

Sport’s rehabilitation for kids

13 Dec 2018 Complementary

When a young athlete gets injured, it can set the stage for pain and growth abnormalities for their lifetime. We want you to look out for these injuries as they can occur during your family holiday football or basketball game.

Sprained ankles; just one can set you up for getting more and more sprains which eventually create weak ankles as an adult.
Getting your ankle adjusted and the muscles and ligaments worked on with hands or a tool will help speed recovery and prevent future injury
Pitching shoulder; can happen due to over-training but can also lead to shoulder pain, lack of range of motion, arthritis and even frozen shoulder as an adult. In severe cases, they may not be able to raise their arms above their head.
Massaging an injured arm by making sure that the arm is moving in its full range of motion and adjusting the spine and shoulder to make sure they are free from joint restriction
Spine mis-alignment and pain in the low back can be from falling off the monkey bars or from growing pains. Severe cases such as scoliosis need regular maintenance to help prevent progression causing heart and lung issues. Both are helped by making sure the spine is properly aligned
Children are less likely to have severe growing pains when joint and muscle alignment is more relaxed.

How to keep a healthy balance.

23 Sep 2018 Complementary

How to keep a healthy balance

1. Surround yourself with people who help you grow

This is important because love gives us energy and energy is life. When we have people in our life that either take our energy or don’t love us and cause pain and hurt, it takes our energy away from being who we are.

2. Eating Healthy

When we put healthy food in our body, we can have a clear mind and body to function at our best. Some of the common foods to reduce in our diet are sugar, caffeine, wheat and dairy. You can always try eliminating food and see if your body reacts.

3. Spend time doing something you love

It is good to have things in your life that bring you joy and it’s usually better to choose things that are only yours. Spending time with your partner and kids is fine but it needs to be something you can turn to even if you are all alone. Gardening, crafts, cooking, sports, photography are all things you can choose that can be a solo activity enjoyed on your own.

Why Birth Photography?

20 Jun 2018 Complementary

Why Birth Photography?

As a birth doula for the past 4 years, I’ve seen many partners become parents with the birth of their child. There are such loving yet intense moments between couples when laboring. I started to capture some of these moments when a client would ask to get some pictures during the process and I was always taken back by the beauty in those raw moments.

In sharing these photos with my clients, they were able to process their birth a little easier by filling in the spaces where their memory wasn’t serving them properly. Of course, during labor, a mama can be in a totally different realm while working to bring her baby into the world. These images of moments I witnessed helped the mama in understanding her birth journey and even in understanding her power as a woman birthing her baby. As one of my recent clients explained in a testimonial of my services, Parts of the delivery were so fast and sort of a blur in our memories, so the photos are a gift we will always treasure.”

Since adding birth photography to my birth doula work, I capture what I see as it unfolds in front of me. I feel so amazingly privileged to be witness to such precious and raw moments. To be trusted by a mama to guide her through this event and to watch as a couple become parents is an indescribable honor. To be able to capture a woman’s partner holding her bravely, caressing her loving smile between contractions, rubbing out stiffened shoulders with soft yet strong hands, holding the scissors with a shaky hand to cut the umbilical cord. These are moments the couple is living as the process unfolds and to have the ability to share my perspective with them after all the hard work is done is so fulfilling and magical.

Why birth photography? The birth of a baby is one of the most amazing experiences of our lives, some would say more so than getting married. To allow our body to grow a human being and then work to bring that human into the world, in whatever means necessary, is something you will remember for a lifetime, but will fade in detail. Capture the moments with birth photography to give yourself, your partner, and especially your baby the gift of remembering the details of his or her entrance into the world. The joyous smiles, grimaces, yawns, sweat and tears, and everything in between are worth capturing. As most of the dads explain after hiring me to take photos for them, “I couldn’t imagine having to try and take photos while I was supporting my wife through labor.” Would you have tried to take photos of your own wedding day? If not, consider hiring a birth photographer to capture these precious moments in your life so you can be less stressed and more focused on the work ahead.

If you are interested in learning more, please visit and contact me about your birth photography wishes. We will discuss, in detail, the arrangements before so you can be worry free when it comes to the arrival of your little one!

Caren Hespeler

How to stay on the Diet you Choose at the Holidays

14 Dec 2017 Complementary
  1. Present your diet as a get “Healthy Plan” instead of a weight loss plan.
    People are pretty excited about someone pursuing health but the we often get jealous of someone potentially losing more weight than themselves (there is an oddly sabotaging attitude about this issue).    Also as a doctor I would much rather people think about making dietary changes for healthful reasons than weight being the motivation.
  2. Be up Front
    Tell people what you are eating and what you have to avoid so they won’t think you are insulting their famous cookies or family pot roast recipe.  People are more likely to feel important and validated if they know up front you won’t be eating so they don’t focus on you not eating their food.
  3. Come prepared
    Bring your own foods especially if your diet change is due to finding some new food allergies.  If you suddenly can’t eat dairy then some holiday favorites may not be available to you. Coming prepared with your own food/drink will help you enjoy your holidays all the more.
  4. Remember that your family loves you and just wants to share.
    Especially grandparents like to cook for people they love and this may be upsetting to them if you refuse their food, but it isn’t about  them.  Your diet is important to you and they should respect that; they may give you a hard time only because they feel hurt you aren’t trying their food.  Remember that you love your family always.

7 Tips for Allergy Relief

6 Jun 2017 Complementary

Allergy Hygiene

Remove hat, outer shirt and shoes in your garage after a walk outdoors during pollen season. Pollen will cling to your clothes and keep exposing you long after you have come indoors. Wash your face as well which will help pollen stay away from your mucus membranes.

Keep Window’s Closed and run your Air Conditioner with HEPA Filters

Consult your local HVAC professional to determine the correct filter for you and your household. You may also want to get the air ducts cleaned as this can be a source of dust and mold.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Take 1 tbsp in the morning during the allergy season. The theory is that it helps the mucous flow and cleanses the lymphatics so there is no build up.


They help balance the immune response since current research is stating that most allergies are due to an imbalance in the body. There are also studies that link large amounts of beneficial bacteria to fewer allergy incidents.

Quercetin Supplement

It is nature’s anti-histamine. It stabilizes the mast cells so they don’t release any more histamine, which is the cause of all those miserable symptoms.

Diet Changes

Going on a GAPS based diet or an anti-inflammatory diet can be enough to reduce the allergy threshold and decrease allergy symptoms. It is especially important to remove any foods you know you are allergic to.

Netti Pot or Nasal Rinse System

Put 1 teaspoon of Himalayan salt in 1 quart of boiled water then rinse (you can also buy pre-made solutions). Do 2 times daily for best results (morning and evening). It cleans all the particles out of the nose that may have collected at night with an open window or during the day while out and about.

Spring Cleaning

30 Mar 2017 Complementary

You may not have time for a full-blown house cleaning, but we have a suggestion for 10 things you should throw out for a healthier cleaner home.

1. Make up – toss out all make up you haven’t used in 6 months.
2. Too Small Clothing – ones you haven’t fit in maybe ever. We sometimes buy clothes that don’t fit us well or aren’t that comfortable but our guilt makes us keep them. We say donate or toss.
3. Mis-Matched Tupperware – Throw it out or buy lids that fit. This takes up less cabinet space. In our office, we prefer glass containers for leftovers because there are less toxins present than in plastic.
4. Library of Magazines – Recycle this stack if you haven’t looked at them in over 6 months.
5. Art – Children’s artwork or old pictures. If you are emotionally attached to them, scan them or keep them in a digital file stored in your safe. But many pieces of paper you have around are not important and can be recycled.
6. Old shoes – There are shoes you may love but are broken or ones that don’t fit well; toss them.
7. Gifting – Get rid of your re-gifting shelf to provide a less cluttered environment in your home and life.
8. Old Electronics – Phones, MP3 or ones that you no longer use; recycle them.
9. Broken Jewelry – Send or sell and turn it into cash.
10. Bags – recycle old gift bags, grocery bags and get rid of plastic bags.

Top New Years Resolution for 2017

6 Feb 2017 Complementary

Top New years Resolutions for 2017 that people made and in-Health Clinics healthy hopeful list of Resolutions.

In Health General 2017
Move 20 minute a day Lose Weight
Have your desk ergonomics evaluated Self improvements
Drink More Water Quit Smoking
Detox your liver 1x a year Spend more time with friends
Eat 1 type of vegetable per meal Find a better job
Plan family time in your schedule Do more exciting things
Plan down time for yourself daily Better Financial Decisions

We hope that you will make changes that will benefit your health and that of your family. If you take care of yourself, then you can take better care of your family. If we at In Health Clinic can help you in any way to help with your health goals, never hesitate to call us in 2017.

Seasonal Affective Disorder

5 Dec 2016 Complementary

As the seasons change and the weather gets colder, do you feel yourself getting glum?  The days are shorter, and we don’t see much sunlight after work hours as the sun sets earlier.  If you are among the 10-20% of people who suffer from some seasonal depression, there are things you can do to combat these shifts.

  • Get acupuncture
    Acupuncture is extremely effective at treating many forms of depression.  There are many points to help calm the spirit which is helpful in easing anxiety as well.  Depression is different for everyone so the treatment is tailored to each patient’s specific needs and manifestations.  Some common depression-related issues we treat are insomnia, overthinking, lack of energy and/or motivation, and changes in appetite.  You can feel better and acupuncture can help you get there.
  • Take herbs
    We have several herbal formulas that can help to get you over the hump of these seasonal changes.  Herbs can be extremely helpful for those who feel they just need an extra boost as well as for those suffering from more severe depression.  We offer herbal consultations for those interested in herbs but not acupuncture.
  • Take supplements
    Some supplements we recommend for depression are:

    • Vitamin D–When the weather shifts and we aren’t getting it from the sun, taking it orally can do just the trick.
    • Fish oil–This is helpful in boosting our brain chemistry and making sure nerve signals are transmitting as they should.
    • B-complex vitamins–B3, and B6 help boost serotonin and B12 helps to boost dopamine and norepinephrine.

      If you are feeling down, it is important to share it with people you care about and your health care providers so that you have the support you need to feel better.  We are here to help you feel your best!

      Iris Martin LAc.

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