If you know me, you know I love reading. I am always looking for my next escape from reality. For many years, I read mostly historical fiction books. My favorite books were The Nightingale and The Winter Garden by Kristen Hannah, All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, and The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman. If you like historical fiction, check those out! I am currently reading a lot about health, wellness and nutrition. My interest in functional medicine was ignited after I started volunteering at a free pain clinic in Fort Myers, Florida. I witnessed patients who were sick, really sick, heal and leave the clinic with no pain after undergoing different therapies and being treated by Dr. Alan Gruning. Here’s the kicker: these patients are not prescribed narcotics.
I also was diagnosed with Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) caused by mold toxicity. For a long time I struggled with unexplained weight loss, fatigue, depression, anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, migraines, sinus problems, focus/concentration issues, a foggy brain, and countless other symptoms. I would go to the doctor and my blood work would always check-out as normal. I didn’t understand why I was feeling the way I was feeling and I thought maybe I was overly sensitive or (for a serious minute there), that it was all psychological. That life became my normal. After learning about CIRS and starting treatment, I realized that there are thousands of people out there today just like me. People who are struggling to keep going and feeling alone. That is part of the reason why I started this blog. I want to help educate everyone about the power of proper nutrition and functional medicine, and of course, build a collaborative community for pre-PA students and help them get into PA school!
Part of the process of starting this blog involves educating myself. How am I going to talk about a subject I am not knowledgeable in? I started to read more about eastern, functional and alternative medicine, nutrition health and what’s wrong with our healthcare system today. How and where did we go from patient-centered, quality-valued care to a market and profit driven industry that places patients at the bottom of the pyramid? As a future provider, I want to be able to help my patients in the best way possible. I don’t want to throw a cover over my patient’s symptoms and clock-out physically and mentally. Quality healthcare is partnership, it’s compassion, it’s a lifestyle and it’s a journey.
I started to make a list of books I wanted to read and set a goal to read 2 books a months. I will post recommendations of books I have personally read and that you should read too! These books are changing my life and opening my eyes to the possibility of living a healthier life and being the best version of me. Life is short and I don’t want to spend it replacing bandaids over a never healing wound. I want to fix those wounds and move the heck on!
Here are a few books I’d recommend right now:
This book is one of my favorites of all times. It never gets old. Dr. Pedram Shojai has not only written various book about eastern medicine and health, but he’s also directed a few documentaries. If you have time, watch “Vitality” and “Origins,” which are my two favorite by him. This book is full of life hacks to live at peace and find happiness in the busy, modern society we are all subjected to. You don’t need to meditate in the mountains for 3 months or sell everything you own and build a cabin in the woods. You can live a healthy and successful life while still being a part of society. He is also the founder of well.org, an organization with the mission of educating people about fitness, green living, nutrition and living a prosperous life.
Click here to buy his book on Amazon.
Dr. Alan Gruning is an Osteopathic Medicine physician in Southwest Florida. I have personally been working along side him at his Free Pain Clinic in Fort Myers. His clinic is the first of it’s kind, treating patients who suffer from Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) or chronic pain for free. Along with his volunteer clinic, Dr. Gruning has a private practice and a blog where he talks about some of the things in this book. He is a God fearing, Christian physician and is not in medicine for the title or the big bucks. He is compassionate and loves what he does. This book is great for getting a foundational understanding of what toxins we are subjecting ourselves to everyday and what we can do to improve our health and well-being. The best part is: 100% of the funds are donated to his non-profit, free pain clinic.
Click here to purchase his book on Amazon.