The most common complaint I hear in my office is back pain; sometimes accompanied by numbness, burning, or tinging sensations that radiate down their arms and/or legs.
While I tell my patients that the first goal of treatment is to eliminate their pain, I also let them know that it is equally important to identify the cause(s) of the pain. With that understanding, we can make lifestyle modifications to both facilitate the healing process and prevent the symptoms from returning.
My practice demographics
Because I practice in San Francisco, it is not surprising that the majority of my patients work in front of computer screens.
Sitting 8-10 hours (or more!) each day seated at a computer creates a great deal of muscle and joint tension which, over time, can lead to back pain. And these problems have been exacerbated during the pandemic because so many people are working remotely–hunched over their laptops, at kitchen tables, in bed, or on soft living room couches.
So my first recommendation is, stand up! Don’t spend more than 45 consecutive minutes in a seated position. Set your phone timer as a reminder. Get a glass of water, walk around the block (or the room), but do whatever it takes to get you out of your seat. Even better: Get a sit/stand desk, and a high quality ergonomic chair. Moving between seated and standing positions throughout the day will help to prevent the build-up of muscle tension that can lead to pain. It also has the added benefit of helping concentration.Read the rest of this entry »
“Relax and take three deep breaths,” my guide instructs. Then, bringing the pipe to my lips: “Now take in little bits of smoke…sips. When your lungs are full, just hold.”
Within seconds of that hold, the room and I dissolve into a vision.
On Entheogenic Medicine
5-MeO-DMT is a powerful psychedelic medicine. Derived from glandular secretions of the Sonoran-desert toad, Bufo Alvarius, it is in the category of psychedelics now called “entheogens.” These are substances, that, when ingested, produce non-ordinary states of consciousness. They can invoke a spiritual experience that many people report as a oneness with the universe, or communion with God.Read the rest of this entry »
There are at least two types of journalism. There is the classic detached, distanced, “objective” journalism. And then there is “Gonzo” journalism; most notably practiced by the likes of Hunter S. Thompson and Tom Wolfe. In this style, there is no need for distance; rather, the journalist is fully immersed in the story and reports it from the inside.
Aya: Awakenings is the story of gonzo journalist Rak Razam. In 2006, Razam was on assignment for Australian Penthouse magazine to report on an ayahuasca conference taking place in the city of Iquitos, Peru, in the Peruvian Amazon.Read the rest of this entry »
We are daughters and sons, mothers and fathers; we are our jobs, our homes, our educations, our nationalities; we are our ethnicities.
We travel through life attached to these identities; composites built, brick by brick, with the answers to these questions.
These identities are not just useful, but necessary. With the recognition that we have a self that is separate from the world around us, we can divide our experience into “I” and “it,” subject and object, reducing the external world into pieces to be taken apart and put back together again. Our sense of self– of separateness–enables us to navigate the vicissitudes of life.
COVID intruded into our world last Winter, then raged through the Spring and Summer of 2020. After taking a small break in the Fall, it exploded again–predictably–on the heels of reckless Thanksgiving and Christmas travel.
Dr. David Seaman graduated from New York Chiropractic College in 1986. He quickly migrated from chiropractic practice to a broad range of research. His specialties include inflammation, nutrition and pain. Out of his work has come a series of books focused on the effects of low grade inflammation. In this review, I will focus on his first book, The DeFlame Diet.Read the rest of this entry »
We have suddenly been thrust into a global pandemic. Seemingly overnight, our lives have changed. Many of us are on lockdown, prohibited from leaving our homes except to go to the grocery store, the pharmacy, or the doctor. We must now maintain “social distance” to prevent infection, staying at least six feet from others.
There were already signs, back in December 2019, of a strange viral disease originating in the filthy live animal markets of China’s Wuhan province. Then it was seen in South Korea, and Japan. Somehow it jumped to Italy, and spread throughout Europe. All the while, from our “distant” perch–despite alarms being sounded by infectious disease and public health experts–our leaders looked on, and did nothing.Read the rest of this entry »