Monthly Archives: October 2009

What are some benefits of Infrared Sauna Sessions?

“What health conditions can be improved from the use of a far infrared sauna?”

Infrared sauna therapy is specifically designed to create a comfortable, deep, penetrating heat thereby leading to an increase in core body temperature, a raise in metabolism and subsequent profuse sweating which has numerous health benefits including:

  • Cleansing and Detoxification
  • Heavy metal detoxification
  • Skin health (acne, eczema, psoriasis, wound healing, and scar tissue)
  • Assists with the breakdown of cellulite
  • Supports healthy immune response
  • Pain relief (from Arthritis, Back pain, Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Headaches)
  • Weight loss (burns up to 600 calories in one 30 minute session)
  • Heart disease (clinically shown to lower blood pressure)
  • Women’s Health
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Stress management
  • Increased circulation, elevated blood pressure
  • Athletic injury and recovery, post exercise pain,
  • Muscle and Joint pain, soft tissue injury, muscle spasms, stiffness, adhesions, shoulder pain, tight shoulders

Disclaimer: The information contained within is not meant to replace the clinic advice of a doctor or your main health care practitioner nor does it address individual circumstances. The data and opinions contained in the information are solely for information and educational purposes only.

Almost anyone can use a far infrared sauna, with just a few exceptions, however if one has a specific health condition it is important to consult your primary care provider prior to use.

Hemophiliacs and women who are pregnant or who might be pregnant are NOT advised to use the sauna. Individuals with MS and Lupus may find benefit from the sauna at a lower temperature.

For more information on our infrared sauna sessions and to book a sauna appointment contact us at: 604 683 2298 or

Cold & Flu Prevention

~ written by Katolen Yardley, MNIMH, Medical Herbalist

Fall is the time when children head back to school and it is also the time to enhance and support the immune system to effectively ward off colds and viruses during the winter months.

Sometimes the simplest suggestions are the most effective prevention. To enhance the immune system and protect against viral infections:

  • Wash hands frequently
  • Epsom salts added to a hot bath is a useful way to raise the body temperature and jump start the immune system, (as an elevated body temperature is the immune systems first line of defense against viruses and bacteria).
  • Vitamin C and Beta Carotene are ‘tried and true’ agents to support immune system function and enhance the white blood cell activity against infection.
  • Herbs: Astragalus, Yarrow, Elderflowers, Boneset.
  • Essential oils, (such as Eucalyptus, Cinnamon, Lemon, Rosemary) added to the bath, as a steam, inhaled through a tissue or diluted in water and poured into a spritzer bottle can disinfect both the air and counter surfaces.
  • Breath Essential Oil as a steam is my top recommendation for clearing congested sinuses.
  • Winter Warming Tea Blend and Clear Breath Tea Blend provide additional support for the lungs and immune system.
  • Phytogen an potent immune enhancing herbal blend in capsule form.

Remember, antibiotics do not effectively eradicate viruses and are rarely prescribed for any symptoms of a viral related cold in all countries outside of North America. The common cold can be caused by over 200 viruses, thus the flu shot is a hit and miss attempt to inoculate against 3-4 of those many viruses. Simply the best way to rid the body of viruses of all kinds is to strengthen the immune system directly. Lifestyle suggestions can help rid the home of circulating bacteria and viruses…

  • Clean your computer keyboard and phone mouthpiece with essential oils and water.
  • A computer keyboard has been noted to contain more germs than a toilet seat.
  • Change your toothbrush monthly, also known to harbor bacteria.
  • Avoid ingesting sugar, which will decrease immune system function for hours after ingesting.
  • Avoid consuming dairy, which is very mucous forming, and will worsen symptoms of congestion.
  • Wash the kitchen dishcloth frequently…

For more information on the use of essential oils

For health programs (and custom blended plant medicine) tailored to your specific health concerns, consider booking a clinic appointment.

Shiatsu Specials -Thru October and November

Special for a 1 hour Shiatsu treatment. Regular price $ 60 – October and November promotion $ 40.

Shiatsu is a contemporary therapy with its roots found in oriental medicine, translated literally as “finger pressure” in Japanese. Traditionally performed on the floor, the practitioner uses his/her own body weight while applying pressure to meridians (energy channels) and tsubo (pressure points) with palms, thumbs, and elbows. Shiatsu also involves gentle stretching and range of motion techniques. Shiatsu aims to regulate our body’s energy (“chi”) which flows through the meridians, nourishing the blood, organs, muscles, glands, and nerves. An imbalance in this energy network can often lead to fatigue, pain and illness. Shiatsu treatments help to alleviate stress and to improve muscle and joint function. This deep yet gentle approach to health care can strengthen the body and improve overall wellness, offering many long-term benefits.

In addition to supporting balance and harmony in the body, Shiatsu may also assist with the following specific conditions:

  • Stress and tension
  • Back pain
  • Headaches and neck pain
  • Menstrual regularity and comfort, menopause
  • Post-traumatic stress
  • Depression, anxiety
  • Insomnia, fatigue
  • Pregnancy and childbirth
  • General wellness and vitality ~ plus it just simply feels great!

Nancy Adham ~Shiatsu practitioner. Nancy was born in Alexandria, Egypt and has lived in several countries working with people teaching dance, art, and design. Nancy has a deep understanding of body movement and how muscles work due to her in-depth experience with dance. Her desire to help dancers relieve their muscle stiffness, minimize stess and minimize over-all fatigue led her to study Shiatsu and offer healing through this beautiful technique.

Shiatsu treatments can help to alleviate stress and to improve muscle and joint function. This deep yet gentle approach to health care can strengthen the body and improve overall wellness, offering many long-term benefits. Shiatsu offers excellent solutions for individuals wanting relaxation, additional stress management and health enhancement. Nancy received her certification from the Vancouver School of Body Work and Massage.

To book a Shiatsu appointment at Alchemy & Elixir Health Group call Nancy at 778-833-2770

Infrared Sauna Therapy

“Give me a chance to create fever, and I will cure any disease” –Greek physician, Parmenides

For centuries, cultures around the world have recognized the therapeutic value of heating the body for healing and improved vitality. Drawing upon the knowledge of ancient techniques to maintain good health; methods to induce sweating have been well documented in their use to provide relief from dis-ease and for health enhancement benefits. This traditional wisdom has certainly stood the test of time and is now coupled with advanced technology to create the Infrared Sauna.

Infrared sauna therapy is specifically designed to create a comfortable, deep, penetrating heat thereby leading to an increase in core body temperature, a raise in metabolism and subsequent profuse sweating.

One of the most recognized benefits of Far Infrared Sauna is the ability to assist in detoxification. Stress, environmental toxins, chemicals, xenoestrogens, airborne pollutants, poor dietary and exercise habits all affect our health via the deposition of toxic debris in our system. Using the far infrared sauna helps to purify our cells, specifically the cells inside our fat where our body stores waste and harmful toxins, such as cholesterol and heavy metals. Infrared sauna therapy cleanses and detoxifies your body from the inside out.

“How often can one use the Far infrared sauna?”

Far infrared sauna is considered to be an intense form of a whole body workout. Thus it may be necessary for those not in peak condition to gradually build up tolerance. For those who are physically fit and relatively healthy a 30 minute initial sauna session will be preferred and a sauna session will feel refreshing, cleansing and purifying. Once an individual has become conditioned to the heat, individuals with a sluggish metabolism and those desiring weight loss enhancement can take saunas up to 2 times daily, once in the morning and once in the later day. After the body becomes conditioned to being in the sauna, many people enjoy daily 30 minute sauna sessions.

Sauna sessions are also excellent during times of cleansing, during detoxification programs and to support any health program focused on improving or maintaining optimal health. Most individuals leave the sauna session feeling refreshed, invigorated and revitalized.

Women’s Weight Loss & Wellness Conference

Alchemy & Elixir Health Group’s Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Sharon Green will be speaking on ‘How to Read Food Labels’ at the Women’s Weight Loss & Wellness Conference on Sunday November 1, 2009 at 11 am. Come down and join the inspirational day!

For more information on the Women’s Weight Loss & Wellness Conference presented by Chris Bennett prepare for an inspiring and life changing day…Think and Be Thin!

Date: Sunday, November 1, 2009

Where: Executive Plaza Hotel at 405 North Road, Coquitlam, BC

Time: 9:30 am to 4:30pm

The days events contain: a Health and Wellness Trade show, with many booths to suit your needs and lifestyle:

  • Make Up
  • Skin Care
  • Dietitians
  • Health
  • Wild and Fun Demonstrations with a twist
  • How to read food labels 101
  • Science and skin care
  • Meal planning and cooking
  • Release your emotions to feel empowered
  • Cosmetic make overs

Educational Presentations include:

1:30pm to 2:00pm -The 5 Keys to Growing Your Self Esteem

2:15 pm to 2:45pm -The 3 Stages of a Relationship and How to Make Yours Stronger

3:00 pm to 5:00 pm -Think and Be Thin “The Break- through Secret to Losing Weight”

Cost: $39 per person plus GST (INCLUDES Gift bags and door prizes)

Sign up at this is time for you ladies you deserve it! This is a judgement free safe zone.

Healing Touch Practice Group

Students and practitioners of the HEALING TOUCH PROGRAM, please take note!

If you are interested in joining a supportive Healing Touch PRACTICE GROUP in Vancouver BC,

please contact Virginia Grimaud at Let’s share our spirit, energy and experience.

for more information on Healing Touch…

Herbs: Vital To A Healthy Balance

Written by Klaus Ferlow, HMH, Honorary Master Herbalist

Growing up in Northern Germany “country style”, I quickly developed a love for the bounties of MOTHER NATURE especially berries, herbs, flowers, fruits and vegetables.

The value of herbs to our lives and to our health cannot be overstated, since our ancestors first walked the earth, herbs have formed the basis of medicine chests, cosmetics bowls, culinary spice jars, perfume vials and dye pots. Most herbs in their natural state are safe, and do not leave a residue in the body that could produce negative side effects. Drugs tend to treat or mask the symptoms or condition, while herbals emphasize a preventative approach to healthcare helping to balance and support the bodily functions. The compounds in herbs work synergistically in the body to promote healing. All plants have therapeutic properties as they contain a variety of biologically active substances. Plants undergo photosynthesis, transforming carbon dioxide into energy rich substances. The resulting carbon chains are further transformed into a variety of compounds such as lipids, alkaloids, essential oils and tannins. Through other biochemical processes, minerals and nitrates are absorbed by the roots and transformed into vitamins, trace minerals and antibiotics.

Herbs can affect biological systems in our bodies at the cellular level. Ultimately these high levels of biologically active substances can produce pharmacological and therapeutic affects. The nutritional value of herbs is high and organically grown herbs (no herbicide and pesticide spraying and chemical fertilizer) offer maximum benefits.

Herbs are extensively used in cosmetics, (there is a growing demand for TOXIN free medicinal herbal and personal care products worldwide) herbal creams & ointments, lotions, shampoos, toothpastes, soaps, oils, tinctures, sprays and in cooking. The multitude of uses for herbs as foods, medicines and in products emphasizes how vital botanical plants are to our health and well being. Unfortunately, as the Pharmaceutical industry developed the ability to synthesize medicine from the inert substances such as petroleum and minerals, and developing sophisticated marketing strategies, the therapeutic use of natural herbs diminished and was almost lost, especially in North America.

Recently however, there has been a resurgence of interest in herbs and healing. As people begin to lose faith in prescription drugs and antibiotics, they are rediscovering that herbs and herbal remedies and products are an effective and comparatively inexpensive form of healthcare. Herbal medicine represents a particular approach to healing which differs from allopathic medicine. Rather than relieving a single symptom with single active ingredient, herbs offer a holistic approach by striving to deal with the entire system and treating the cause.

Herbal medicine can only be truly holistic if it acknowledges the social and cultural context in which the illnesses occurred, and then the desired healing takes place. (Body, Mind & Spirit). According to Chris Kilham, the medicine hunter, over five billion people today are still using herbal remedies for healing! The renewed interest in holistic medicine, as well as a great number of traditional therapies, has encouraged changes within the existing medical profession. Given the severe financial crisis of our medical system (many professional predict a collapse within 5 to 10 years) it is incumbent upon us all to seek out and utilize appropriate health alternatives.

Let me quote you from the “Pocket Herbal Reference Guide”, by Debbra St.Clair, MH (Master Herbalist):

“The art of pharmacy turned to the production of drugs which could bring the quickest relief of symptoms, ignoring the reason that the symptoms appeared. As we look back perhaps it is time to reconsider the path. The use of substances has spawned a myriad of unexpected problems, such as suppression of the very signals that our bodies produce to alert us to a need of change. Pain itself is a call to action; a call to remedy and in balance in our lifestyle. The proficient use of herbal therapy is directly connected to our ability to sense that first signal and to adjust our lifestyle accordingly. It is when these signals are continually ignored that disease has a chance to seat itself more deeply within our bodies. The appropriate use of herbs is one of many health alternatives to our medical system.

And remember: For every disease we know, Mother Earth provides a herb to grow. Those who do not spend time every day on health, will sacrifice one day a lot of time for illness, since HEALTH IS WEALTH!

Words of Wisdom “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in care of the human frame, in diet, the cause and PREVENTION of disease.” Thomas Edison (1847 to 1931)

References: Encyclopedia of Natural Healing, alive books The Green Pharmacy Herbal Handbook, James A. Duke, Ph.D. Prescription for Natural Healing, James F. Balch, M.D., Phyllis A. Balch, C.N.C. Indian Herbalogy of North America, Alma R. Hutchens The Herb Book, John Lust Herbs: Wonder Healers, Dr. Bernard Jensen, DC, Ph.D. The Secret Life of Plants, Peter Tompkins & Christopher Bird

Author, Klaus Ferlow, HMH, is an innovator, lecturer, researcher and writer. President, founder and co-owner of FERLOW BOTANICALS, Div. of Ferlow Brothers Ltd, Vancouver, B.C., founded 1975 manufacturing/distributing organic toxin-free (zero-harm) medicinal herbal and personal care products to professional health & wellness practitioners and selected stores with holistic practitioners on staff in Canada and parts of USA since 1993. President of the “Hearts to Health Foundation” and Board member of Health Action Network, Burnaby, B.C. Copyright, all rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. HMH = Honorary Master Herbalist. Dominion Herbal College, Burnaby, B.C., est. 1926,

His educational articles have been published in Health Magazines, Womens Magazines, Newspapers, Newsletters in Canada, United Kingdom, United States, and numerous websites around the world.

This information is offered for its educational value only and should not be used in the diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of disease, contact your health care practitioner.