6 Health Food Blogs for Almost Any Diet

At Dreamclinic, in addition to being your trusted source for massage and Acupuncture in Greater Seattle, we also like to share with you information on living a healthy and fit lifestyle. Whether you’re a teenager or a retiree, man or woman, one fact remains the same: you need quality insight that will help you make your health decisions. At the same time, we know you also want to keep up with the latest in trends and research from the medical industry. This is true whether we’re talking about finding a trusted massage therapist, a new exercise for your active schedule, or even, like today, discovering health food blogs.

Now, more than ever, it seems like there are some great resources on the Internet that let you tap into an entire health community. Of course, our health professionals here at Dreamclinic are happy to share all of this essential advice and the reliable online resources we recommend. After you’ve gotten an invigorating massage at our clinic, you also want to maintain a healthy diet as well. So, from vegetarians to food connoisseurs, this is your list of must-read health food blogs to check out when you’re dining in.

My New Roots

This health food blog is jam-packed with some seriously good recipes. It also helps that the blogger is a Certified Nutritional Practitioner. That means you’re not just getting another recipe or food idea. In fact, you’re getting meals founded on good eating. While this blog isn’t solely vegetarian, there’s a focus on staying plant based most the time.

Naturally Ella

Speaking of vegetarian eating, here is a blog that hits that spot. If you’re into the veggie lifestyle, you’re going to love this one. It has information on how to best stock your pantry, an area to explore ingredients, and so much more. The recipes? Absolutely tasty with a focus on flavorful and fit.


This one is as straightforward as it gets: regular meal ideas that are low fat and healthy, but also friendly for the family. In addition to good tasting meals, you’ll also discover that the blog is centered around seasonal eating and best of all, portion control, but with big flavor.

Nutrition Stripped

Run by a Dietitian Nutritionist, this health food blog definitely has a good diet in mind. With articles on subjects like eating well while traveling and practical workout tips, it has a little bit of everything you’ll need.

Nutrition Unplugged

And when it comes to getting into nutrition, it doesn’t get any better than this health food blog. If you’re in search of a source that really dives into the world of food science, this might be right up your alley. A little more in depth, but very interesting, it’s one you can get lost at very easily.

Nom Nom Paleo

Let’s finish this list off with a fun one that takes its inspiration from a popular diet right now: the paleo diet. This health food blog has some really creative ways to enjoy this lifestyle, even as you stay fit in the process. The blog is an excellent resource, but also a lot of fun.

Once you’ve chosen one of these health food blogs or even a few of them, check out the health-minded services we provide at Dreamclinic. They go perfect with any diet!


Massage for Treating Stress

dreamclinic massageMost of us have stress in our lives, whether due to work, family or general environment. For some the stress may cause sleeplessness, anxiety, hypertension or depression. For many the stress leads to muscle soreness somewhere in the body – the shoulders, neck, legs, or back.

Whatever form the stress manifests in, can become an incessant low or medium-grade condition that puts a damper on our every day lives and sense of well-being.  At its extreme, chronic stress wears down our immune system and adrenal function, causing onset of illness and serious medical conditions. Some individuals use exercise to relieve stress but many do nothing. They just live with the aches and pain, blocking out the discomfort they feel. The problem with this approach is that with time our aches and pain only increase, depriving us of health and vitality.

Massage therapy can be used to treat most common conditions related to stress and muscle tension. Massage has both psychological and physiological effects. It can be used to treat specific ailments or injuries and is also used for general relaxation and emotional calm. Massage is beneficial for those experiencing headaches, arthritis, insomnia, asthma, digestive disorders, constipation, carpal tunnel syndrome, sinusitis, and minor aches and pains. Those taking prescriptions for the above and related conditions will find that massage can be a great compliment to or even an alternative for the medication. The long-term benefit of receiving regular massage is lower stress, greater energy levels, and an experience of overall greater health.

Below are the known effects of massage on the body: 

    • Relieves muscle tension and stiffness


    • Reduces muscle spasms


    • Lowers blood pressure


    • Decreases stress and anxiety


    • Strengthens the immune system


    • Improves joint flexibility and range of motion


    • Speeds recovery from pulled muscles or sprained ligaments


    • Treats tension headaches and effects of eye-strain


    • Improves blood circulation and movement of lymph fluids


    • Improves posture


    • Relieves repetitive motion injuries


    • Enhances the health and nourishment of skin


  • Helps removal of metabolic wastes

By Larisa Goldin, MBA, LMP

Supporting your immune system with massage

common cold helped by massage dreamclinic seattleCold and flu season is upon us. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that this year’s flu vaccine is 60% effective; so even if you’ve had a flu shot, you are still susceptible. Add a heaping spoonful of stress on top, and you further increase your vulnerability to illness. But there is some good news. A growing body of research indicates that your chances of staying healthy year round are increased because of supporting your immune system with massage

Chronic stress releases hormones in the body that contribute to decreased immune function, inflammation, depression, anxiety and ultimately, illness. Massage counteracts many of the negative effects of stress while encouraging relaxation, improving circulation, and releasing tension.

Multiple scientific studies have confirmed massage’s effectiveness at boosting immunity. One such study, funded by the National Institutes of Health and conducted at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, focused on healthy adults. Multiple blood samples were taken from study participants before and after they received a massage. Results of the blood tests showed that “a single massage produced measurable changes in the immune system and endocrine system of healthy adults.”

Dr. Mark Rapaport, Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences and the study leader at Cedars-Sinai, said, “This research indicates that massage doesn’t only feel good, it also may be good for you. People often seek out massage as part of a healthy lifestyle but there hasn’t been much physiological proof of the body’s heightened immune response following massage until now.”

Participants in other controlled studies on this topic have ranged from pre-term infants to HIV+ men, medical students, and women with breast cancer. Each of these studies definitively showed that massage produced a positive improvement in immune system functioning.

Michael Ruff, Ph.D., a research associate professor with a specialty in virology and immunology at Georgetown University Medical School stated, “These are the first studies that show an effect of massage therapy on an immune function test, which can support the use of massage therapy to alleviate stress, relax muscles and now possibly serve as an alternative medical practice,” said “What we’re really looking at is creating a new paradigm for the practice of medicine, where massage therapy could be used in medication treatment versus just for relaxation.”


This article has been brought to you by Dreamclinic – offering quality therapeutic massage and acupuncture in the greater Seattle area as well as corporate massage nationwide.

5 Things You Need to Know about Acupuncture

acupuncture schoolAcupuncture has moved into the mainstream, so much so that most insurance companies now cover acupuncture services. Its benefits are extolled regularly in the media, and ongoing research is being performed to validate its effectiveness. But what is acupuncture and how does it work?Here are 5 important things you need to know about acupuncture.

1. Acupuncturists are highly-trained and licensed healthcare professionals.

Acupuncture school is lengthy and demanding. Over three to four years, students must complete 1200 hours of classroom instruction and 500 hours of supervised clinic practice, then pass a national exam and a background check before applying for a state license to practice. This rigorous process protects the public health and ensures that only highly trained and experienced acupuncturists are practicing legally.

2. Acupuncture is an integral part of Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine is made up of four major components – “acupuncture, herbology, bodywork, and health benefitting exercises. It is a blend of medicine [whose elements came from:] India…with Buddhism, the Middle East via the Silk Route, and Daoism, China’s own philosophy of harmony and balance.”1

In Washington State, acupuncturists are classified as “East Asian Medicine Practitioners.” A qualified acupuncturist will do a thorough intake and, using the tools of Chinese Medicine, design a customized treatment plan for each patient. This may include acupuncture needles and one or more of the following: breathing and relaxation techniques, bodywork and massage, cupping, hot/cold therapy or Qigong, plus dietary advice and Chinese herbs to support the patient’s healing. Communication between practitioner and patient is essential to achieve the desired results from each course of treatment.

3. How does Acupuncture work?

Chinese Medicine theorizes that a person’s life force energy, qi, flows everywhere within the body. The body remains healthy and in balance when qi flows freely. Pain, illness or dysfunction indicates a blockage in the flow of qi. Since over 2000 acupuncture points are located directly along the meridian pathways, insertion of acupuncture needles clears interruptions in the flow of qi and moves the body closer to its natural state of balance.

4. These are not your mother’s needles.

Often when people hear about acupuncture, they envision the use of large syringes or hypodermic needles that were encountered in childhood. Rest assured, there’s no need to run in the other direction. The sterile needles used in acupuncture are actually very thin. When inserted into an acupuncture point, the therapeutic sensation a patient feels may range from no sensation at all to a localized or traveling achiness. The FDA, who regulates the use of acupuncture needles, rates them as “safe and effective.”

5. Acupuncture has medical benefits.

Although scientific research has its limitations when assessing body-based health care modalities such as chiropractic, physical therapy, massage and acupuncture, the research conducted to date overwhelmingly affirms the medical effectiveness of acupuncture. Research has validated the use of acupuncture for treating headaches and migraines, relieving depression, and reducing chronic pain.  For more information on acupuncture research, visit the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, http://nccam.nih.gov/.

Now that you know a little more about acupuncture, give it a try and see for yourself how effective it can be.

This is an original article from Dreamclinic, Inc. Dreamclinic is a Health and Wellness company committed to sharing information about commonly experienced health conditions and how they may be impacted through the use of bodywork and other natural approaches. Dreamclinic offers massage, acupuncture, and Reiki sessions at its Roosevelt and Queen Anne clinics, as well as onsite massage at workplaces around Puget Sound. Contact us to learn more about how Dreamclinic can help you, your family or your workplace experience greater health.
1. http://www.traditionalstudies.org/what-is-chinese-medicine/ 

Additional resources:

Edmonds Tennis Champion Credits Massage with Boosting Her Performance

In early April, the USTA Women’s 55 & Over tennis team from Edmonds won the National Championships held in Arizona. Melanie Korch, a member of the team and a regular client of Dreamclinic, credits massage with boosting her performance on the court.

“Since 2008, massage at Dreamclinic has been an important part of my fitness routine,” shared Melanie. “Before or after my matches, I schedule massage therapy to relieve sore and tense muscles. Massage also helps me stay flexible and improves my range of motion.”

Congratulations to Melanie and the entire USTA Edmonds women’s team on their championship win!

Melanie USTA

Pictured L to R: Ellen Johnson, J R Thompson (Captain), Melanie Korch, Liz Smalley (Captain), Marylen Fitzgerald, Judy Ann Jennings, Nancy Burdyshaw.

Read the official USTA news release:

Massage Improves Seniors Health

Nurturing touch has been correlated with positive social and physical development in infants. As one ages, touch continues to play an integral role in human social interactions. Throughout a lifetime, healthy touch remains important to help a person to grow and thrive. In fact, senior citizens – just like babies – still need touch in order to stay healthy and maintain a positive quality of life.

Many seniors can experience isolation and depression due to retirement, widowhood or disability. Massage offers them an emotional lifeline – a connection to and compassion from another human being. On a physical level, massage gives seniors a path to pain reduction, improved circulation and increased mobility.


Caring touch is an accessible, therapeutic remedy for staving off age-related illness. In fact, recent evidence points to improved health outcomes for seniors receiving body-based therapies such as massage1 in conjunction with a conventional medical treatment plan.

The National Center for Health Statistics predicts that the population of seniors in the U.S. will double by 2030.2 Hence, the need to prevent and manage age-related disease and disability will be greater than ever. Massage has the potential to lessen the health burden on seniors personally, and on our healthcare system as a whole. Seniors who receive massage on a regular basis experience improved overall health, greater mobility and independence, and a reclaimed quality of life.

As our population ages, seniors Health, and the need for compassionate interaction between human beings grows more important than ever. Indeed, as infants need touch in order to survive, the same can be said for the elderly. And on the receiving end, seniors can be reassured of massage’s capacity to improve their well-being, help maintain independence and provide them with a better quality of life for many years to come.

This is an original article from Dreamclinic, Inc. Dreamclinic is a Health and Wellness company committed to sharing information about commonly experienced health conditions and how they may be impacted through the use of bodywork and other natural approaches. Dreamclinic offers massage, acupuncture, and Reiki sessions at its Greenlake and Queen Anne clinics, as well as onsite massage at workplaces around Puget Sound. Contact us to learn more about how Dreamclinic can help you, your family or your workplace experience greater health.

1. http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/070810.htm
2. http://www.amtamassage.org/articles/4/eTouch/detail/2356

Image: http://massage1sttherapy.ca

Other Resources:

Improve Sleep with Acupuncture

by Diana Khoury

Up to 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders every year.1 Sleep problems range from mild to chronic and include insomnia, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome and other, less common conditions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reminds us that “sufficient sleep is not a luxury—it is a necessity—and should be thought of as a vital sign of good health.”2

Changes in American society over the last several decades have contributed to an increase in sleep irregularities. Leading factors include higher stress levels than in past generations, busy 24/7 lifestyles, obesity, and overstimulation from increased access to TV, Internet, and personal electronics. As a society we are getting less and poorer quality sleep than ever before.

man-sleeping_hr“Sleep is something your body needs to recharge your batteries, and it affects nearly every aspect of your life,” says Marci Cleary, spokeswoman for the National Sleep Foundation. “It’s food for the brain.”3Since sleep is such an important indi- cator of overall health, it’s no wonder that deprivation negatively impacts the body and one’s quality of life.


Sleep loss has many negative effects, including low energy level and decreased ability to focus. Doctors say lack of sleep erodes memory and concentration, disturbs neurological function, inhibits tissue and muscle restoration and slackens reflexes.

According to the CDC, “Insufficient sleep is associated with a number of chronic diseases and conditions—such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression—which threaten our nation’s health. Notably, insufficient sleep is associated with the onset of these diseases and also poses important implications for their management and outcome.”2


In response to the steep increase in sleep disorders, the number of accredited sleep clinics in the U.S. has more than tripled since 1995. At the same time, pharmaceutical companies have targeted sleeplessness as an attractive growth market for the coming years. Sleep clinics may be able to provide relief, but each visit to an accredited clinic can cost thousands of dollars. Drugs may address the symptoms of common sleep issues, but they can be addictive, have side effects, and do not address the root cause of the problem.

Acupuncture, as an alternative treatment for sleep problems, has been shown to outperform western medication due to its lack of side effects. In 2009, a clinical review of 46 research studies on the effects of acupuncture on insomnia concluded that acupuncture improves sleep duration and quality.4 One controlled study of anxiety sufferers and their sleep patterns demonstrated that acupuncture physiologically increased melatonin production, enabling participants to fall asleep faster and wake less during the night. Participants also reported reduced anxiety levels due to increased relaxation.5

In a study conducted in Brazil with sleep apnea patients, acupuncture measurably strengthened and reduced inflammation in the tongue muscle, decreasing incidences of the tongue falling back during sleep, blocking the airway.6 As a result, participants’ apnea symptoms were reduced and overall sleep quality improved.

To address sleep disorders appropriately, a qualified acupuncturist will first conduct a thorough intake and evaluation of your symptoms. This will allow the practitioner to create a targeted acupuncture treatment plan for maximum results: better sleep, improved health, and increased quality of life.

This is an original article from Dreamclinic, Inc. Dreamclinic is a Health and Wellness company committed to sharing information about commonly experienced health conditions and how they may be impacted through the use of bodywork and other natural approaches. Dreamclinic offers massage, acupuncture, and Reiki sessions at its Greenlake and Queen Anne clinics, as well as onsite massage at workplaces around Puget Sound. Contact us to learn more about how Dreamclinic can help you, your family or your workplace experience greater health.

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK19961/
2. http://www.cdc.gov/sleep/
3. http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2002925590_sleepless12e.html  
4. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3156618/
5. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14990755
6. http://www.sleepapnea.org/treat/treatment-options/acupuncture.html

Image: www.centerforspinaldisorders.com

Other Resources:


Correct Breathing is Essential to Good Health

In The Healer’s Manual, author Ted Andrews outlines four tenets for maintaining health and preventing disease: proper diet, proper exercise, proper rest, and proper breathing.1 We don’t often hear breathing mentioned as an important aspect of well-being. But just as breath is essential to life, correct breathing is essential to optimal health.

When acute stress occurs, the body’s normal physiological adaptation is a shortened, rapid breathing pattern in the upper chest cavity. As high stress levels persist, this abbreviated breath pattern becomes a chronic habit, and produces a domino effect of negative consequences in the body.


Shallow breathing significantly increases the amount of carbon dioxide the body exhales, markedly altering the body’s pH and creating a condition called respiratory alkalosis. “Increased pH (alkalosis) causes smooth muscle constriction. Smooth muscles surround the blood vessels and the gut and are embedded throughout connective tissue. As a result, one of the first effects of alkalosis is that the diameter of blood vessels reduces, impeding normal circulation, increasing blood pressure, as well as altering fascial tone throughout the body and interfering with normal peristaltic function in the intestines, thus leading commonly to irritable bowel syndrome or constipation. One research study suggested that up to 90 percent of non-cardiac chest pain can be brought on by [rapid, shallow] breathing.”2

Prolonged stress locks in this abnormal breathing pattern, affecting the body structurally, physically, and physiologically. As the breath remains shortened, alkalosis is induced, “making delivery of oxygen to the tissues (brain, muscles) less efficient, leading to reduced motor control, lower pain threshold, impaired balance, increased feelings of agitation, fatigue, and a variety of cognitive (“brain-fog”) and emotional repercussions (anxiety, panic tendencies, etc.).”2

Over time, dysfunctional breathing becomes a cycle, making it difficult for the body to revert back to its normal function. “Chest breathing is inefficient because the greatest amount of blood flow occurs in the lower lobes of the lungs, areas that have limited air expansion in chest breathers. Rapid, shallow, chest breathing results in less oxygen transfer to the blood and subsequent poor delivery of nutrients to the tissues…Using and learning proper breathing techniques is one of the most beneficial things that can be done for both short and long term physical and emotional health.”3

The deep breathing techniques taught in yoga provide multiple benefits. A yoga student must be physically and mentally present to learn specific techniques, creating self-awareness of one’s breath in the moment it is occurring (being present). Yoga breathing also has an important physiological component. The deep exhalations of abdominal breathing stimulate nerves at the base of the lungs which activate the parasympathetic nervous system, inducing relaxation and allowing normal physiological functions to reset.

Massage can help break dysfunctional breathing patterns and assist the body in returning to health. As muscle tension is released, the body’s circulation and oxygenation increase and the nervous system is calmed, breaking the stress cycle and creating a higher state of well-being.

This is an original article from Dreamclinic, Inc. Dreamclinic is a Health and Wellness company committed to sharing information about commonly experienced health conditions and how they may be impacted through the use of bodywork and other natural approaches. Dreamclinic offers massage, acupuncture, and Reiki sessions at its Greenlake and Queen Anne clinics, as well as onsite massage at workplaces around Puget Sound. Contact us to learn more about how Dreamclinic can help you, your family or your workplace experience greater health.

1. Andrews, Ted. The Healer’s Manual. Woodbury: Llewellyn Publications, 2006, page 5. Print.
2. http://www.massageandbodywork.com/Articles/JuneJuly2007/understandingbreathing.html
3. http://www.amsa.org/healingthehealer/breathing.cfm

Image: www.health.harvard.edu