oakville massage newsletter


In This Issue:

Hair Analysis: What Can It Tell You?
Stretches to Prevent Golf Injuries
Sugar Addiction

Have You “Liked” Us?
Health & Wellness: Shop In-Store or Online!

April 2016

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Hair Analysis: What Can It Tell You?

Dr. Samantha Ristimaki, BSc, ND
Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine
Acupuncture & Traditional Chinese Medicine

dr ristimakiAsk Yourself:
Do you regularly use antiperspirants or antacids?
Do you have metal tooth fillings or regularly consume seafood?
Do you live near or work in an industrial setting?
Do you spend a great deal of time in traffic?
Do you have chronic symptoms that haven't been diagnosed or treated successfully?
Do you have chronic gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, diarrhea, or gas?
Do you take minimal amounts of vitamin C?
Do you suffer from periodontal symptoms, allergies, or hypertension?
Do you suffer from mood changes that are difficult to explain?
Do you have trouble with concentration, memory, or learning?
Do you get infections easily or recover slowly?
Do you experience a reduced sense of taste or smell, poor night vision, rough skin, or poor wound healing?

If you answered 'yes' to two or more of these questions you may have element imbalances or excess toxic elements in your system.

Why Hair?

Element imbalances are linked to:

  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Osteoporosis
  • Malnutrition
  • Depression
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Cancer
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Allergies
  • Joint pain
  • Diabetes
  • Digestive disorders
  • Learning disabilities
  • Attention deficit disorder
  • Autism
  • Hypothyroidism

Extensive research has established that scalp hair element levels are related to human systemic levels.  Blood is widely used for many medical tests, however, it does not always reflect what is going on at the organ level. Blood is regulated by hormone mechanisms that work to keep levels within specific ranges, but hair is not; therefore, deviations in hair element levels often appear prior to blood symptoms.  This makes hair analysis valuable as a preliminary tool for predicting the development of physiological abnormalities. 

  • Low zinc is associated with poor wound healing, weight problems, depressed libido, hair loss, and impotence.
  • Low magnesium is associated with cardiovascular problems, depression, and anxiety.
  • Low copper is associated with joint pain, elevated cholesterol, anemia, and reduced resistance to infection.
  • Low manganese is associated with back and joint problems, hypoglycemia, and allergies.

What about Toxic Elements?

Toxic elements may be up to several hundred times more concentrated in hair than in the blood or urine, making hair the choice for detection of exposure to arsenic, aluminum, cadmium, lead, and mercury.

  • Excess lead is associated with fatigue, constipation, insomnia, emotional disturbances, hyperactivity, and learning disabilities in children.
  • Excess aluminum is associated with Alzheimer’s disease and may also lead to the depletion of phosphorus in the body, which is critical for bone health.
  • Excess arsenic is associated with fatigue, skin problems, and tingling in the extremities.
  • Excess cadmium is associated with fatigue, tissue aging, musculoskeletal pain, anemia, and hypertension.

When is Hair Analysis the Wrong Choice?

Hair is subject to external contamination, particularly from products such as bleaches, perms or dyes. Hair treated within two months of sampling will not provide accurate information. In these cases, blood or urine test may be better choices.


Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information and to book your appointment.

For pricing information please click here.



Stretches to Prevent Golf Injuries

dr tara brownDr. Tara Brown, (Hon) BA Kin, DC, ART®, D.Ac
Doctor of Chiropractic
Active Release Techniques, Acupuncture & Graston Technique Provider

With the warmer weather approaching, golf season will soon be underway. Many of the movements made during a golf game can lead to unnecessary injuries that may be prevented by stretching first. Here are some simple stretches from the Ontario Chiropractic Association that should be used as a warm up:

1. Side Bending Stretch: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. With arms above head, holding golf club, bend to one side without rotating until you feel a stretch along the side of your back. Perform on each side twice, holding for 15 seconds.

2. Quadriceps Stretch: Bend knee so foot is up behind glutes. Grab with hand on the same side. Keep thighs together and your knee pointing toward the ground. Pull your abdominal muscles in and maintain a straight back. Perform on each side twice, holding for 15 seconds.

3. Hamstring Stretch: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Reach your hands towards the sky. Then, bending at the waist, reach toward your toes. Perform on each side twice, holding for 15 seconds. Note: avoid this stretch if you have back problems.

4. Knee to Chest Stretch: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Using both hands, pull one knee into your chest. Repeat with the other knee. Perform on each side twice, holding for 30 seconds.

golfer stretch5. Forearm Stretch: With your arm straight out in front of you and palm facing down, gently pull fingers back with other hand. Next, flip palm over so it is facing upwards and gently pull back fingers with other hand. Keep shoulders neutral. Perform on each side twice, holding for 15 seconds.

6. Shoulder Stretch: Hold the golf club behind your back. Gently pull the club up with your top hand until you feel a slight stretch in the shoulder of your lower arm. Next, gently pull the club down with your bottom hand until you feel a stretch in the top shoulder and arm. Perform on each side twice, holding for 15 seconds.

7. Squat: Start with feet shoulder-width apart standing upright. Next, squat down trying to keep heels flat on the ground. Hold squat position for 30 seconds. Note: avoid if you have knee problems.

8. Back of the Shoulder Stretch: Place right hand on your left shoulder. Gently pull right elbow across your body toward your left shoulder.

For help developing a warm-up and stretching routine that is right for you, book an appointment with myself, or Dr. Shima. 


Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information and to book your appointment.

For pricing information please click here.



Sugar Addiction

Calais IrwinCalais Irwin, RMT
Registered Massage Therapist

The Easter Bunny has come and gone and we all have an abundance of chocolate and other sweet treats around the house, so let’s talk about sugar!

I think the most important thing to understand about sugar addiction is what happens in your brain when you eat sugar. There is a release of a chemical called dopamine into the nucleus accumbens, which is the reward centre of the brain. This area of the brain has a similar response when someone is using heroin or cocaine. Exposure to sugar can also cause a decrease in dopamine receptors, which basically creates a tolerance for sugar; thus, the next time you eat sugar, you need more of it to have the same pleasure reaction. A decrease in dopamine receptors won’t just effect how you feel after sugar consumption, but can also play a role in how you feel after all things you find pleasurable.

All Sugar Is Not Created Equal

When we talk about cutting back on sugar sugar addiction, we’re talking about added sugar (a.k.a. refined sugar). Sugar that is found naturally occurring in fruits and vegetables is much healthier because you are getting the added bonus of nutrients and fibre.

Here is a list of some of the different names for sugar (this list may not be exhaustive):

beet sugar, brown sugar, buttered syrup, cane-juice crystals, cane sugar, caramel, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, dextran, dextrose, diatase, diastatic malt, ethyl maltol, evaporated cane juice/syrup, fructose, glucose, glucose solids, golden sugar, golden syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, invert sugar, lactose, malt syrup, maltodextrin, maltose, mannitol, molasses, raw sugar, refiner's syrup, sorbitol, sorghum syrup, sucrose, sugar, turbinado sugar, yellow sugar

Ingredients Labelling

When looking at food labels, you should be reading the list of ingredients. The nutritional information chart may list sugar, but that could be including naturally occurring sugar as well as added sugar.

When companies create their ingredients list, they list them in order of the amount contained in the product, from most to least (i.e. there will be more of the first ingredient on the list than the last). As more people are making informed choices about their food and doing things like reading labels, the food manufacturers have started using tricks to hide added sugars. One thing you may notice is multiple types of sugar listed in one product ingredient list. If the manufacturer just used one type of sugar, it may be the first ingredient on the list; however, if they use three types of sugar, the quantity of each one decreases and suddenly those ingredients drop to the bottom of the list. While you think there isn’t much sugar in your food, it could actually make up a significant amount of the product.

Sugar’s Effect On The Body

Sugar not only affects brain chemistry, it also affects just about every other part of your body. Sugar intake can be a contributing factor to the following health problems:

non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, over eating, exhaustion, depression, wrinkles and sagging skin, inflammation and joint pain

Cutting Out Sugar

If you’re considering cutting out or reducing refined sugars, there are tons of great recipes and blogs out there. I use the search term “refined sugar free” plus the name of what I’m looking for (i.e. refined sugar free ketchup). You’ll be shocked at how great these recipes taste without any refined sugar!

Here’s a few of my favourite refined sugar free recipes:

Homemade Ketchup

6oz can tomato paste
1/3 c honey
½ c white vinegar
¼ c water
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp onion powder (optional)
1/8 tsp garlic powder (optional)

Combine all ingredients in medium sauce pan over medium heat. Whisk until smooth. When mixture comes to a boil reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring often. Remove pan from heat and cover until cool. Chill and store in covered container.

carrot cakeCarrot Cake with Cashew Frosting
(gluten, dairy, and refined sugar free)

3 cups almond flour
1 ½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 2/3 tbsp. cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
5 eggs
½ cup honey
¼ cup coconut oil
6 med carrots
1 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts

Preheat oven to 325F.

In large bowl, combine almond flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, honey and coconut oil. Stir in grated carrots, raisins and chopped walnuts. Mix wet ingredients into dry. Pour batter into two greased 9-inch round cake pans. Bake for 35 min. Cool and frost.

Cashew Frosting

¾ cup cashews, raw
¼ cup water
4 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ lime, fresh
½ tsp sea salt
¼ cup coconut oil, raw

Blend all ingredients except coconut oil until smooth. Add coconut oil and continue to blend until creamy. Chill for 30 min in fridge or until firm and spreadable.


Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information and to book your appointment.

For pricing information please click here.



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