Category Archives: Health

Guard Your Health

Published on August 2, 2016 by

About half of the American population has at least one chronic illness. The majority of these illnesses can be prevented, delayed, or alleviated with proper treatment. You do not have to suffer—we can do something about this together!

The Optimal Wellness Network was created in order to fill this role. “OWN your health” is the motto of our integrative network of wellness professionals. You do not need to be overwhelmed and confused by the information out there. By utilizing the services offered through the Optimal Wellness Network, you can get the results that you need and end up saving time and money.

Guardians Of Health Logo

People generally first come to our office seeking hormone balancing. Proper hormone balancing is a critical piece of your health. Having your Testosterone, Estrogen, Progesterone, Cortisol, Thyroid, and Growth Hormone properly evaluated is a must if you want to have a vital life. It is like having gas in your car. But it is not the entire answer.

To have optimal health we must also address what you eat & drink, your sleep, the supplements that you require, the stress that you have & your overall mind set, your exercise regime, and your toxin exposure. This can be overwhelming to most people. Each of these areas has multiple sub categories. Our goal is to simplify this for you and help you with every step.

The Optimal Wellness Network offers a true integrative approach to your health. The other practitioners in the network coordinate with what we do at An Optimal You. Here is the extended team of highly experienced and talented professionals that are available for you under one roof in our building in Murrieta:

  • An integrative nutrition specialist who eliminates the confusion about diets and supplements. He tailors his approach to your specific needs; helping you to achieve lasting energy, decreased inflammation, functional digestion, and overall great health.
  • A thermography expert who helps you to be proactive with your health. Why wait for disease to occur when you can detect the precursors to cancer and diseases?
  • A yoga instructor who specializes in customizing stretches and breathing exercises to your needs and capabilities. She will first listen to you and then guide you toward a healthier, more radiant life.
  • A massage therapist who gets to the root of your problems utilizing Ortho-Bionomy-a gentle, non invasive form of healing. She has a unique gift at reminding your body of its natural ability to restore balance and heal itself.
  • Hypnotherapists who can help you overcome a lack of confidence, phobias, smoking, weight concerns, sleep issues, etc. The power of the mind is incredible and the use of proper hypnotherapy allows you to heal yourself from the inside out.
  • Reiki practitioners who offer you a truly unique healing experience. Reiki utilizes your own body’s energy to heal itself. One of our Reiki practitioners is a Reiki master who also offers transformational coaching. Another Reiki practitioner also teaches you how to easily meditate.
  • A colon therapist that offers painless detoxification to rid your body of toxic chemicals, yeast, & parasites to promote a healthier colon. It is incredible the things that she can find and eliminate from your colon!
  • There is also a mild hyperbaric chamber—oxygen is good, more oxygen is better!! Pro athletes are using these types of chambers after their games in order to increase healing and improve recovery time.
  • A practitioner who specializes in PRP and Stem Cell—utilizing your body’s own healing powers to fix musculoskeletal complaints. You may be able to avoid surgery and steroid injections by utilizing this therapy that is widely used in professional athletes.
  • An ultrasound screening technician who offers ultrasound screenings without having to go through insurance hoops. An affordable way to check for problems.

It is sad when people choose the path of poor health, but it is a tragedy when they suffer because they do not know what is out there to help them. The Optimal Wellness Network works with you to reduce or eliminate pain, move better, think more clearly, sleep restfully, digest normally, feel balanced, and prevent disease. If you are interested in learning more about this amazing network and start your journey towards living a life with more vitality and joy; attend the upcoming wellness expo on Sept. 17th from 10 am to 3 pm.


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The Power Of The Mind

Published on July 17, 2016 by

Words convey emotion and enable us to communicate with others. The words that we say to ourselves and out loud to others have a definite impact on the way that we feel. Has anyone ever said something to you that lit you up inside and lifted your spirits? Or said something that brought you down?

a brain graphic lifting weights

Changing the words that you say is a great start to helping you to feel better overall. Instead of saying “try”, what if you said “yes” or “no”? Instead of saying ” I should” do something, what if you said “I choose” or “I choose not to” do something. Simply changing how you say things can positively change how you feel. It can empower you.

While treating men and women for hormone balancing I often encounter the complaint “I can’t lose weight”. Balancing estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone plus optimizing thyroid levels can help your metabolism and help you feel better overall. However, some people may still have issues decreasing fat. The mind can be an overlooked reason –it can block weight loss.

To decrease fat it is important to work on decreasing stress to support your adrenal glands and decrease cortisol. Stop saying “I’m fat” since that just reinforces to your mind that you are fat. Unplug regularly and focus on health, not weight. Hypnotherapy, meditation, yoga, and reiki can be great ways to help you with readjusting your cortisol and metabolism.

The mind is powerful –remember that addressing it is an important piece of feeling optimal.


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What We Drink:

Published on June 30, 2016 by

What we drink affects our hormone balance and overall health. We often forget how much what we drink can affect us.

Alcohol intake has been shown to increase estrogen levels in both men and women. High estrogen levels in men can block the beneficial effects of Testosterone, cause moodiness, and can cause breast enlargement and prostate growth. Estrogen excess in women can cause PMS, fat deposition, period irregularities, moodiness, and irritability; among other things.

photo of water, coffee and tea

Caffeine can increase cortisol (our stress hormone) levels and reduce melatonin (our sleep hormone) levels. This can cause insomnia, irritability, anxiety, and weight gain, etc. Drinking 2 or more cups of caffeine containing drinks can also increase estrogen levels–causing similar issues as alcohol.

Consuming dairy products may affect your thyroid function–causing you to have a lowered thyroid function. This can cause weight gain, fatigue, constipation, dry skin, etc.

Soft drinks (sodas), juices, and other sweet drinks can quickly increase your blood sugar in 10 to 20 minutes. This elevated blood sugar affects your cortisol production and causes an imbalance in your hormones. This can result in a difficulty losing weight, mood instability, sleep disorders, etc.

2/3rds of the human body is water. Drinking water is the fluid of choice to drink. Water drinking is asociated with a reduced risk of certain cancers and heart disease. Consuming adequate water also helps your cortisol and sex hormones (Testosterone, Estrogen, and Progesterone) have a balanced mineral corticoid activity (healthy salt retaining).

What you choose to drink definitely affects your hormones and overall health. By choosing to drink water over other types of drinks, you will be choosing better health.


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Live An Optimal life

Published on June 17, 2016 by

What does that mean to you? To me, it means having the energy to do the things that I want and like to do. It is feeling and looking healthy—being full of vitality. It is feeling mentally balanced. Living an optimal life is about living each day to its fullest and enjoying each day.

How do we do this? Does it happen with a magic pill or diet? Does it happen by reading the right book or listening to the right speaker or mentor?

It seems that our human instinct is to want things quickly and to expect huge miraculous results with one thing that we do. This is not how it works. In order to live an optimal life I have found that it involves addressing many thing on a regular basis. It is the small, little things that we do on a regular basis that add up over time to give us an optimal life.

Person Jumping in the air

After treating a wide variety of patients and doing my own personal research I have found that the following areas are what need to be addressed:

  1. Nutrition (food, drink, and proper supplementation)
  2. Sleep (a healthy sleep environment and sleep schedule is important)
  3. Exercise (moving the body on a regular basis–it does not have to be at a gym)
  4. Toxin exposure (minimizing what toxins you are exposed to and detoxification practices)
  5. Our mind (the subconscious mind is a powerful tool)
  6. Proper hormone balancing (Estrogen, Testosterone, Progesterone, Thyroid,and your other hormones need to be balanced utilizing bio-identical hormones in today’s hormone imbalancing environment)

All of these areas can be broken down into many subsets and can be easily addressed. Look at these areas and pick a simple step that you can do to work towards a more optimal life. It is the small, little steps that you take each day that will lead you to success. Be patient with yourself and keep moving in the right direction. Here at An Optimal You, we are here to help guide you in your journey.


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Proper Planning For Health!

Published on February 11, 2016 by

Have you ever noticed how crowded the gym parking lots are this time of year? Then they slowly get emptier and emptier as the year progresses. By December they are almost empty. Why is this?

It is not that people are lazy, don’t know what to do, or don’t want to be healthy. Most of the people that fall off are intelligent, desire health, and get a lot of stuff done on a daily basis. The problem is that they want to make great changes in their health and they start with massive effort that is unsustainable. They have unrealistic expectations that they can change what they do over night.

coffee cup on napkin with quote

For example, think about selling your existing house that you have lived in for 25 years and buying a new house. How would you go about doing it? Would you decide one day and then within a week or two be all moved in and organized in your new house? No! It would be a long process of decluttering the house you were in, getting the house sold, finding your new house and then organizing your new house. It will take months if not longer.

When it comes to a house we all seem to understand that we need to be patient. When it comes to our health, for some reason most people are impatient. They expect immediate results and to change long standing behavior over night. This is why so many fad diets and schemes are around. They prey on our desire to have overnight success.

If you want to have optimal health the first step is in realizing that small daily positive steps in that direction will give you lasting results. Massive action doing things you never normally do will just result in burn out and frustration. If you want to be successful for the long haul, be honest about where you currently are. In integrative medicine we look at the mind set, nutrition, sleep patterns, exercise program, toxin exposure, supplements, and your hormone balance. Where are you at in these areas?

Once you know where you are at, you can make a plan to move forward slowly in a sustainable manner. Pick something to work on and start there no matter how insignificant it may seem or how overwhelming the big picture appears. I like to start with ensuring that hormones are in the proper balance utilizing bio-identical hormones because this helps energy, motivation, sleep, etc. As your hormones balance, you are better equipped to make other needed changes.

Changing to a healthy diet , a great exercise program, a positive mindset, decreasing toxic load, etc can take time. It does not matter if it takes a year or more to make the necessary changes that you require. What matters is that you make the changes at a pace that is not overwhelming for you and that is fairly easy.

Write your long term health goals down and then break it down into easy, doable steps. For example, one goal may be to eat healthy so that you can lose weight or maintain a healthy body composition. The first step could be to add one vegetable serving per day. Once that is easy to do then add one more. Before you know it you will be substituting healthy vegetables for unhealthy snacks and uou will easily be able to do it.

Be patient with yourself. Change takes time but it is worth it! Focus on how good you will look and feel long term.


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Hormones And Sleep

Published on November 20, 2015 by

As you know there are many pieces to the wellness puzzle. To feel vital and healthy involves addressing all of the pieces. I advise starting somewhere and making progress over time. It is important to address sleep, exercise, mindset, nutrition, supplements, hormone balancing, and toxin exposure. Each of these things affect each other. This month I am going to talk specifically about sleep. Proper sleep is important in order for you to feel energetic and function properly.

Sleep disorders are quite common and sleep medication is prescribed at alarming rates. There are a small percentage of people who may need them but the large majority of people who take them do not require these medications. There is often an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. Sleep problems (issues with going or staying asleep) can arise from a variety of causes.

One of the major causes of sleep disorders is our mind. Often, the mind is full of thoughts of what needs to get done. Or you may be the kind of person that pushes yourself late into the night to get things done–not allowing yourself to rest. Today’s world is full of things that stress our mind–news, phone calls/texts, e mails, financial worries, work issues, traffic, etc. The great news is that you control your mind. You may not be able to control the things that happen around you but you can control what you watch, what you read, what time you go to bed, what you think about, how you react. Everything is a choice whether you wish to admit that or not. You can say No to things–it is a choice.

women sleeping

The best thing to do is to avoid watching news as it is visually disturbing and often negative. You can stay informed without watching news. Another great thing to do is to keep your phone on vibrate and turn off the alerts. Check your cell phone when you desire to–not at the whim of whoever is calling you or texting you. They will survive, and so will you. Turn off your cell phone at a set time each night to keep it off while you sleep and pick a day a week where you keep it off. I like keeping my personal cell phone off on Sundays as most people respect that day as a day to rest, but pick whatever day works within your life. If your job requires you to be contacted after hours, have a separate phone for after hour work emergencies so that you can turn off your personal cell phone when you desire. Take control of your time-you deserve it! Spend some quiet time each day and focus on how you are breathing. Take long, deep breaths to relax your mind. Go outside and look at the stars for a few minutes at night-it helps to give you some great perspective. Turn off the TV and computer at a set time, allowing you time for your mind to relax. Get outside in nature whenever you can–it is very calming for the mind.

Another major factor that affects sleep (in both men and women) is a hormonal imbalance. It is quite common to have a hormonal imbalance affecting your sleep–we are surrounded by a multitude of hormone disruptors that cause an imbalance. A deficiency in Progesterone, Testosterone, and Estrogen and/or a Cortisol excess can affect your ability to fall asleep, and stay asleep. If you think that this is the issue, have your hormone levels evaluated and treated with bio-identical hormones. Rebalancing your hormones can help your sleep.

Sometimes sleep disorders can be due to a deficiency. Magnesium is quite calming and a lot of people are deficient in this mineral. I advise 200-300 mg of chelated Magnesium to help calm the brain down. GABA is a calming neurotransmitter in your brain and can often be depleted due to our stressful lives. Supplementing with GABA can often help to quiet the brain down. (I like Neurocalm–we do carry this at the office if you can’t find a good GABA source). Melatonin is your body’s natural sleep aide and sometimes the addition of sublingual (under the tongue) Melatonin can help you to fall asleep better. Keep in mind that your body requires a dark environment in order to properly produce melatonin so keep your bedroom as dark as you can.

Sleep apnea can affect your ability to get quality sleep. Sleep apnea is when your lungs have a hard time getting enough oxygen at night due to the airway being constricted. Often you will snore. If you are told that you snore I highly advise a sleep study to evaluate whether or not you have sleep apnea.

Eating later in the evening (i.e. less than 3 hours before bedtime) or drinking caffeine in the afternoon or evening can affect your sleep. You may think it does not, but it does.

Ensure that you go to bed at a reasonable time so that you can get the amount of sleep that your body requires–generally 7-9 hours. This is different for each person. You know when you got enough sleep when you wake up without an alarm.

You are important and taking some time on a daily basis to ensure that you get adequate, restful sleep will pay off with an increased energy each day. Be aware of your thoughts and your activities and pay attention to the effect that they have on your sleep.


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Personalized Medicine

Published on June 22, 2015 by

I recently read an article in medscape and a doctor was quoted as saying:

I am no longer a physician; I deliver healthcare for a large provider. I don’t care for a patient; I care for a covered life as part of an insurance. Physicians have to pigeonhole a patient’s predicament into a very specific box for which they must enter a Current Procedural Terminology code. As individuals age, they also become more unique and less like one another. Checklists forced upon physicians ignore the unique needs of each patient. We have evidence-based protocols that say if everything else is equal, here’s what you should do. The problem is, everything else is never, ever equal.”

Everyone is unique and requires different things in order to age well. What works for another person may not work for you. In order for you to attain optimal health we must address what you eat & drink, your sleep, exercise, your toxin exposure, your mind, hormones, and what supplements you personally require. Each person has unique needs based on their genetics and lifestyle, along with what they are wiling to do and what their desired outcome is. This is what we call personalized medicine.

Butler Hand Ringing A Bell with the medical symbol on it

Traditional insurance simply does not allow for personalized medicine because they force the doctors to pigeonhole the patients into specicfic diagnosis and treat them in specific time frames. Insurances simply do not allow for them to be treated to an optimal level.
The bottom line is that insurances cover disease states, not true wellness.

I know that the state of our medical system is frustrating–for both patients and doctors. I can start changing the system by educating one person at a time and by being one of the doctors who has an innovative medical practice. I would love to see our medical system change to where this type of medical practice is prevalent and the medical system truly serves patients in an optimal manner. There are a lot of politics at play so it may be a a while. In the meantime, be aware and take control of your health.


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Low Thyroid

Published on June 7, 2015 by

A well functioning thyroid is critical for a healthy metabolism, good immune system, temperature regulation, and cell energy production. Unfortunately most doctors just test the TSH and do not look at the actual thyroid hormone levels (T3 and T4). Even if they do look at them, the doctors are happy if you are in the “normal” range, they do not realize that optimal values are different than normal values.

Hormones For Men

If you gain weight easily, or have a hard time losing weight, your thyroid may not be optimal. Thyroid imbalance can also present as dry skin or hair, constipation, hair loss, fatigue, or brain fog. You may also have swelling around the face and then a thickening in your arms and it may spread throughout the body. You may be sensitive to hot or cold, have brittle fingernails, have joint pain, etc.

If you think you may have a low thyroid, get your levels checked and your symptoms evaluated by a physician trained in bio-identical hormone balancing. Thyroid replacement can be done safely and naturally with the use of desiccated thyroid. Desiccated thyroid is a natural form of thyroid hormone. This type of thyroid replacement most closely replaces what your body is missing.


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Small Steps – Big Changes

Published on May 5, 2015 by

As you are sitting or standing there reading this, thoughts are going through your mind and you are starting to realize that there are things in your health that you wish to improve or change. And if you made this shift in your health you would feel better and have a more positive life. And, as you realize this, you also realize that often fear is the reason that you have not made this shift.

footprints in the sand

There are many fears that you may have: the fear of failure, the fear of who you would be if you did change, the fear of being ridiculed, or some other fear. No matter what your fear is, it stems from an internal dialogue. We all have a voice inside our head that talks to us. It is this voice that says you can’t do this, you will fail so don’t even start, or it says something else that hinders your progress.

If you wish to become healthier it involves hormone balancing, a healthy diet, regular exercise, good sleep, the right supplements, and minimizing toxin exposure. It also involves turning that little voice inside you to a more positive and helpful voice. It is the slight shifts in you that cause the huge results later on. If you know what to do to get started, then do it. If you don’t know what to do or need assistance with this in another way; ask for help.


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Testosterone is not just for men!

Published on February 26, 2015 by

I see many different types of women for hormonal issues and occasionally they have actually started bio-identical hormones but still did not feel optimal. It is extremely rare for them to have been put on Testosterone, and if they were it is usually a suboptimal dosing. This shows that there is a lot of misunderstanding about Testosterone –both with patients and with prescribing doctors.

Testosterone in woman

Testosterone is a hormone that is present in both men and women. Obviously men have a higher amount in their blood than women, but it is still an important hormone for women to have. Many people think that it is only a hormone for sex drive and nothing could be further from the truth!! Testosterone is responsible for helping you heal, enhancing your mood, improving your focus and memory, helping your sleep, and giving you overall vitality. It has a few hundred functions in the body and without optimal Testosterone levels you will simply not feel like yourself.

Replacing your Testosterone with a bio-identical replacement hormone is a big part of regaining your vitality. Eating a healthy low sugar whole food diet, minimizing your toxin exposures, reducing your stress, and taking bio-identical hormones all work together to ensure that you live longer feeling young and vital. If you are feeling tired, depressed, have aches and pains, can’t sleep well, have brain fog, or feel less than vital; you will want to get your Testosterone and other hormones checked by a hormone specialist.


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