“I feel congested like things are just stagnant in my body. And even though my eating habits really haven’t changed much, my weight is up about 8 pounds and it’s not budging.” 

That was me on Monday morning.  

It was time for me to be on the patient-side of the desk. My body was tapping me on the shoulder and letting me know it was time to check in with the doctor.  

Over the last few weeks, I could feel that my gallbladder was acting up a bit. My lower abdomen was bloated. Bowels were sluggish. Water made me burp a bit – almost like indigestion. The skin on my back was flaring a bit, kind of like a breakout but not really. These were all signs that were pointing to stagnation.  

In a short meeting with Dr. Paulson, I described my symptoms. One of the things that I love about working with her as a patient is her ability to make sense out of the puzzle pieces presented to her. I mentioned that I had been looking at traditional Chinese medicine concepts around my experiences because it didn’t feel like a gut bacteria issue, it didn’t feel like an over-eating issue – things just felt stuck. 

As expected, she listened and I could see the light bulb go off. She explained how these things were connected and offered a new twist on old issues for me. Albeit, while I may have a solid foundation in understanding my body, outside perspective is always helpful. 

She wrote up a new treatment plan that I started that afternoon.

The next day I was down 3 pounds. And then this morning, I was down a total of 5. Before getting too excited, please know that I know (and so should you) that this pattern won’t be typical or lasting. What it does show me is that my suspicion about needing more than dietary changes was spot on. My weight wasn’t necessarily being driven by the quantity of foods I was consuming but rather a disruption in my digestive system. Addressing that was a needed key to the health puzzle.  

And that’s what I came here to say. We do use that number on the scale as a barometer for health but what it tells us isn’t always about what’s happening around food and physical activity. Naturopathic medicine looks at the totality of our experiences and informs us of dysfunctions in our health that are treated at the root. Just another reason why I love what I do and what we provide to others.  

Knowledge is power.