Meatless Mondays:

We often get asked if there is a "best" or "healthiest diet" and typically our answer is that there isn’t one. So many factors are at play but our usual blanket statement is some version of a whole foods diet with an emphasis on vegetables, healthy protein and fat. Depending on your unique needs, health conditions, goals and ethical considerations, a diet can vary drastically from person to person and still be considered healthy.

As Naturopaths, we’ve probably tried almost every diet on the market (anti-inflammatory, ketogenic, paleo, vegan, gluten free, SCD...) to be able to lend patients our perspectives. Most recently, John and I have been implementing intermittent fasting with plant based meals into our routine.

I can honestly say that I haven’t found my “perfect” diet yet, but I’m in constant pursuit. Since implementing a predominantly plant based meal plan as well as intermittent fasting, I’ve been sleeping well, exercising more and feeling great.

With all this hot weather in Portland, salad rolls with cashew dipping sauce have been on the menu.

Recipe Ingredients: 

- For the rolls: Brown rice wraps, carrot (peeled with a potato peeler), tofu, cucumber, mint, thai basil, green leaf lettuce, vermicelli rice noodles (have also added avocado and sautéed shiitake mushrooms). 

- For the sauce: cashew butter, honey, tamari, sriracha

 

Headlines

The purpose of this blog is to promote wellness. In an effort to achieve this we will regularly share our thoughts and analysis on current headlines.  While not all health and wellness news can be categorized as “fake news”, they are often very misleading. An entire blog post can be written on this topic (and have been), and there are a lot of websites and blogs that tackle this issue exclusively.

This week’s article, “Poor quality sleep could increase Alzheimer's risk”, reiterates previous research and provides further details regarding the process that puts an individual at risk for Alzheimer’s. There is nothing controversial in the findings, but the new data suggests that sleep quality is more important than sleep quantity. Sleep disruption isn’t just limited to increased risk of Alzheimer’s, either, as suggested by this study. In primary care, most patients are asked how many hours they sleep, and unless they have frequent wakings, they aren’t asked any follow-up questions. There are many ways to encourage better quality sleep, starting with basic sleep hygiene. White noise machines/apps, making the dog sleep on the floor, getting blackout curtains, disabling the flashing lights on the TV/stereo, and avoiding smartphone use prior to bed are some ways to reduce sleep disruptions and improve sleep quality. Smartphone use prior to bed could potentially become the most significant threat to sleep quality and overall health, as suggested by this study. 

As a culture we need to place an emphasis on necessary physiologic processes that maintain health. In our culture presently, an emphasis is placed on productivity and self-sacrifice. There are people who claim to need only 4 hours of sleep per night, but they are rare. Most likely, you aren’t one of those people. Only 1-3% of the population can actually sustain health with this much sleep, and they are referred to as short sleepers. These lucky folks are genetically wired to get deep, quality sleep in a shorter amount of time.

This is a topic that deserves more attention. For most people, improving sleep quality can be relatively easy. The benefits of improved sleep quality can affect multiple aspects of health and wellness.

For the insomniacs out there- my apologies for creating content that emphasizes the harms of sleep deprivation. As a former insomniac I can attest to the frustration and anxiety caused by this condition.

*The contents of this blog are not meant to diagnose or treat any condition. If you have a medical condition, consult with a physician.

Weekend Adventures

We believe that getting out into nature is a fundamental part of wellness. Our weekends are typically spent exploring Oregon and Washington's trails and mountains. We were thrilled that we were able to finish our intended hike today; this winter was a doozy and many of the trails we've gone to have been covered in many feet of snow (even in July), or blocked by 20+ downed trees. We hope that you all did something enjoyable this weekend. 

Saturday: Mountain Biking - Mount Saint Helens Ape Canyon to Plains of Abraham - roughly 17 miles

Dr. B back in the saddle following a Bennett's Fracture (thumb). 

 

Sunday: Hiking - Flag Point via High Prairie Trailhead - 11.4 miles

These fire lookouts are staffed over the summer months. The gentleman staying at Flag Point invited us up. He used to be an engineer for Intel and after he left that job, has been on fire watch for the past 7 seasons, along with his 13 yo dog Abby. They were both lovely. 

Our dog Riley (pictured above) did not care for the flights of stairs and had to be carried both up and down (she weighs 60 lbs). 

Nice view of the transition from forest to high desert. 

Resource: Find your next adventure on Oregon Hikers Guide - https://www.oregonhikers.org/

 

Welcome to the new PHC Blog!

We are in the process of creating more content for our patients, families and friends with the hope that you will find this information informative and entertaining. This blog will include information on health, nutrition, fitness, our travels and I'm sure some nerdy research, too. Stay tuned! 

Dr. Beedenbender & Dr. Lee