** WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST ME TO CARE ABOUT YOUR HEALTH?**
A WELL-ROUNDED EDUCATION
“My broad and diversified background enables me to look at the person and his or her health condition from many different perspectives to provide a truly wholisitic (whole person) and holistic (natural) approach to healing.”
- Diplomate of Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM), 2009
- Certified Herbalist (NCCAOM), 2009
- Licensed Acupuncturist, States of New York and Idaho, 2010
- Licensed Acupuncturist, State of Massachusetts, 2012
- Master of Science in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine (Colorado), 2009
- Master of Science in Biology (Nutritional Biochemistry(, University of Alaska Fairbanks, 2001
- Certification in “Acupuncture for the Cancer Patient”, Memorial Sloan Kettering, 2010
- Research Scientist, UCLA Center for Human Nutrition, 2005
- Research Associate, University of Alaska Fairbanks, 1999
* I aim to provide professional, individualized care and hope that everyone who walks in the door will leave not only feeling better, but feeling empowered about how to change their own health.
* I am committed to providing a warm and nurturing place for growth and healing to occur. I want to hear all that my patients have to say and aim to listen, truly listen, to their fears, needs and concerns.
* I want my patients to make informed decisions regarding their health care because only then can they take responsibility for their own health and well-being.
* I use modern and ancient healing techniques to heal the whole body – the whole person – not just isolated problems and not just the disease.
* I believe in treating the body with gentle and effective techniques, naturally, and without dangerous side effects or toxic overload to the body.
My mission is to help you transform, heal, and thrive!
ON A PERSONAL NOTE…(or, Why I Went from Research Scientist to Acupuncturist, and became obsessed with food….)
People ask me all the time how I became an acupuncturist. And my answer always is, “LIFE!”. I started out with an undergraduate degree in Pre-Medicine, striving to be a cardiovascular surgeon (which I wanted to be from the age of 8). But during the process of med school application, I realized that I didn’t feel a true commitment to health or wellness from any of the people I was applying with, that the desire for monetary gain drove the process more than actual changing the well-being of people’s lives. So I ended up in Alaska, doing a research based Master’s degree program, where I studied Nutritional Biochemistry in muskoxen. That’s right, I said muskoxen…..large hairy beasts! Which lead to my first understanding about the crucial importance of nutrition in reproductive and developmental processes. Later, working at Texas A&M as a Toxicologist, followed by working at the Center for Human Nutrition at UCLA where I researched the impact of things such as Vitamin D, Lycopene, Green Tea and other phytochemicals on cancer, I gained vital understanding as to the direct impact of nutrients on disease processes.
During this time, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer (my grandmother, great-aunts, and cousin have also gone through breast cancer treatments), and I watched as she went through treatments that literally devastated her body, with little, if any, education about what she could do to support her own healing process. Personally, I underwent surgical treatment for endometriosis, which came on during the stress of my divorce, and again, was very disheartened by the lack of any information about how I could affect my own hormone levels, or a lack of any treatment strategy other than “take this artificial hormone, or have this surgery which we don’t even know how effective it will be.”
Surprisingly, my first taste of Chinese Medicine, and that there are other ways to treat disease than with drugs or surgeries, came from my time at UCLA. Many of my fellow research scientists were Chinese, and watching them eat and listening to how they talked about using herbs and food to balance out different conditions that arose in the body, I got my first glimpse into “alternative” healing modalities. I also happened to stumble upon a book about QiGong one day while visiting ChinaTown in San Diego, and felt instantly connected to this view of the body and minds interconnections. So wanting to return to my initial love for healing while integrating a more empowered model for health, I applied to and started Acupuncture school in Colorado, the perfect respite after the chaos of LA living.
Within months of starting school, and doing various herbal formulas combined with frequent acupuncture treatments, my hormones were completely balanced and I had no symptoms of endometriosis. I was hooked! At the same time, my mother was dealing with the horrible side effects of taking Tamoxifen, and I started her on an individualized herbal formula to deal with the pain, neuropathy, fatigue and horrible hot flush/sweating episodes. Within a short time, her symptoms drastically diminished and her quality of life radically improved. I remember thinking, how awesome is this medicine, that I can make such an impact on someone’s life as a simple beginner, using a knowledge base that is thousands of years old! And no expensive high-tech equipment required!
Because of my extensive family background of breast cancer, combined with my research experience, I have become obsessed with learning all that I can about preventing cancer in myself – I guess when you have a HUGE likelihood of a disease, it sort of propels you to do all that you can, selfishly, to want to prevent it! I have studied from the Chinese Masters (Jeffrey Yuen, Jimmy Chang, Li Chun Huang, Richard Tan), followed Nutritionists looking to reverse/prevent cancer and chronic disease (Dean Ornish, T.Colin Campbell, Neal Barnard, Joel Fuhrman, John McDougall), and constantly stay up on the research about cancer and nutrition. I also have spent a great deal of time learning about the impact of environmental factors on cancer (from the bigwigs like Sam Epstein and the Environmental Working Group), and in doing so, have become a little fanatical about what I expose my body to (I call it my low-toxin lifestyle). It feels quite liberating to know that I can make decisions that will directly impact if and how cancer may affect my life, and I find it remarkably easy to make decisions when armed with this knowledge. (“Will eating that food and buying that product promote health, or cancer?”)
All together, I have learned that we are the master of our own health!! We have the ultimate say in the food that we put into our body, in the products that we put on our body, and in the lifestyle that we choose to live. We can choose a life towards health or a life towards a disease state. I hope to use my personal experiences and broad knowledge base to empower all of my patients to make impactful decisions, enabling them to live their best life. I hope that all of you use your own personal stories as a motivation to grow and seek out means that will allow you to thrive and live vibrantly. My job is to push you towards that life, using all the tools in my kit, to help get you towards where you want to be. The question is, are you ready to take responsibility for your own health??