Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Why are you always so tense?? You just need to relax!

That’s easier said than done, right? We can tense muscles, and we can relax them, most of them on command. But some of them, when left unattended for just a second, seem determined to just hold on. Why?? In my experience there are three main reasons: Habits, stress and fascial restrictions. Over the next three posts, we’ll look at each one.

Part one: Habits. Most of us have habits that cause tension, usually related to posture and repetitive movements. And as you probably know, changing a habit by sheer force of will is incredibly difficult. The reason for this is that a habit solves a problem. It is currently, or at one point was, the best thing to do to cope with a situation. The key to overcoming a “bad” habit then lies in recognizing the problem and helping your body find a better solution!

Here is an example: No matter how hard you try, you always end up slouching when sitting at your desk. Why? Because that is the position of least effort in your current environment. One major factor that makes sitting tall hard is that most of our chairs are too short. By simply raising your chair (and desk) you can make it easier on yourself to sit with better posture.

The next time you notice tension, take a moment to look at your position, at the way you are performing your task and at the equipment you are using. See if there is anything you can tweak, such as the angle of a keyboard, the size of a grip, the stiffness of a pedal or the position and flow of the things you are handling. Ask a friend or co-worker to observe you, or hire a professional such as a trainer to help you find a better way.

Thank you for reading! I hope this little series gives you some ideas and tools to address tension in your own body! Of course, if you would like more information, or if you would like help with any of the three challenges, please do get in touch here!

Yours in Health,
Dr. Claudia

Monday, January 29, 2018


Last night 1/28/2018 a large fire devastated the building my practice was in. Thankfully nobody was harmed. I am in the process of finding a new location. In the meantime, please get in touch if you have questions or need an urgent referral to another provider!

Yours in Health,
Dr. Claudia

Monday, February 13, 2017

*** Special Event!!!***

This Friday February 17, 7pm,


is returning to CIM/NPS for a special intimate house concert performance to showcase her new album "Real Freedom"!

Join us for music and snacks at our clinic
5125 SW Macadam Ave, Ste 210
Portland, OR 97239

Admission is free! (Donations to the artist welcome 😊)

Thursday, January 5, 2017

You may not feel like it, but here's why you should be drinking extra water right now!

When it's cold out, we often don't feel like drinking lots of water. And we're not sweating, so why should we?

During the usual Pacific Northwest Winter weather, when it's cold, damp and rainy, drinking your normal amount of water is just fine. But right now things are different: It's cold and dry.

Do you notice chapped lips? Dry hands? A drippy nose that tends to get sore when you blow it? All of these are external signs that the dry, cold air is sucking the moisture out of your skin.

What is less obvious is that with each breath you also lose moisture out of your lungs. That cloud of steam that you see when you exhale? That is the water you're losing. To make matters worse, the heater in your house is creating warm, dry air that is even more thirsty for water than the cold, dry air outside.

Losing all this water not only causes the dry skin, but will also make you tired, more prone to headaches, more susceptible to colds and more likely to get lightheaded and dizzy. Dehydration can even cause constipation and increase your risk of kidney stones or a stroke.

Still don't feel like drinking plain water? There are plenty of options that may feel better to you this time of year: Hot tea always feels good, or there are plenty of recipes for flavored water to be found online (cucumber is an easy one). Clear soups are an excellent way to hydrate and a perfect addition to a winter meal. Fruits and veggies naturally contain water, and are packed with fiber, vitamins and minerals, too.

If you feel the effects of the dry air strongly, are susceptible to colds, or have small children in the house, you may also want to invest in a humidifyer for your home. Just run it during the night next to the bed.

Whichever method works for you, just remember: If you notice that you are getting dried out on the outside, the same is happening on the inside, and it's time to hydrate!

Yours in Health,
Dr. Claudia

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Keep moving or else...

Did you know that after only three days of taking less than 5000 steps a day your blood sugar will start to spike after you eat? And that these spikes put you at increased risk for heart disease and diabetes? A new study shows that just increasing the amount of daily exercise will help level out those spikes, even if you don't change what you eat. So dig out that pedometer and start walking! And don't stop at 5000 steps! Can you make it to 10'000 steps a day?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Yoga: a cure-all or potentially harmful?

In January the NY Times Magazine published an excellent article about yoga that addresses some concerns I have shared for some time. Many people have come to believe that they can self-treat physical ailments with yoga. While that may be true in some cases, for most deep seated problems the treatment needs to be more specific and the instruction nore presonalized than you would find in a yoga class. I whole-heartedly encourage everyone to engage in exercise such as yoga that promotes strength, flexibility, focus and relaxation. Just make sure you do it for the right reasons, and ask for help if something doesn't feel right!