About Our Guest- Dr. Heather Wdowin – Naturopathic Medicine

Dr. Heather Wdowin is a licensed primary care physician and specializes in Oncology, Chronic Disease, Endocrinology, and Sports Medicine, as well as a licensed Naturopathic Medical Doctor. She’s a member of the Endocrinology Association of Naturopathic Physicians and is working on becoming board certified in Naturopathic Oncology. She is also a member of the Restorative Medicine Association and has studied with the leaders of the emerging Environmental Medicine field. Heather is an accomplished diagnostician, practitioner, and certified clinical hypnotherapist aiding patients in utilizing the mind-body connection in healing.

Diva Nagula 00:00
I don’t think I’ve ever met a unhealthy naturopath. There are so many practitioners that are in western medicine, they’re practicing medicine but they’re the most unhealthy people that I know. Welcome everyone to another episode of From Doctor to Patient. This is Dr. Diva Nagula and I am so excited to bring our next guest. She is Dr. Heather Wdowin. Dr. Heather is a licensed primary care physician and specializes in oncology, chronic disease, endocinology and sports medicine, as well as a licensed naturopathic medical doctor. She’s a member of the endocrinology association of naturopathic physicians, and is working on becoming board certified in naturopathic oncology. She’s also a member of the Restorative Medicine Association, and studied with the leaders of the emerging Environmental Medicine field. Heather is an accomplished diagnostician, practitioner, and a certified clinical hypnotherapist aiding patients in utilizing the mind body connection in healing. Heather, thank you for joining us today. It’s great to have you.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 01:26
Nice to see you. Thank you for having me on.

Diva Nagula 02:09
So we are fortunate to have you because a lot of our listeners are trying to explore various modalities and healing practitioners. And you’re a naturopathic provider. And I just want you to take a few minutes and explain what natropathy is and what it is you do.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 02:30
Okay, let’s see. So most of what I practice can be put into the box of functional medicine, because we want to support the body and functioning optimally, we can test nutrient levels, micro biome, neurotransmitter levels, all of that, in order to have the body function and heal itself. Naturopathy is a little bit different, because we’ve gotten certain tenants that are a philosophy that drives how we treat. And so one of them is to use nature. And so I do a lot of herbal medicine. And there’s energetics that are tied into that as well, if you look at it, some naturopaths use homeopathy, I don’t use that quite so much as others even though I have been trained in it, we are trained in Chinese medicine and acupuncture some of us we also can do physical medicine, like kind of a blend between chiropractor and DO adjustments. In some states, we’re trained to do that, because believes that it opens up the body restores, restores the function, but I think that the most important tenants that we have, are to treat the cause. Because we want to find the cause of disease rather than just stop the symptoms from appearing, which is what a lot of conventional medicine is looking at, like, we have tension in our blood vessels. So our blood pressure is high. And so you give a you know, calcium channel blockers, so the muscles in the in the blood vessel have to relax, right? But that’s not addressing why they’re tensing right in the first place. And so that’s what we try to find. And usually it all comes down to like stress or nutrient dysfunction, or deficiencies. So we have treat the cause, but we also have treat the whole person and I think that might be my favorite one. It’s hard to pick favorites, but there’s so many facets to a human being. And so I think that’s partly why specialists are specializing in a field of medicine can be so dangerous and reductionist, because if you look at like an endocrinologist and a psychiatrist, they can both have a role in depression, for example, but the psychiatrist isn’t always going to check to see thyroid levels to see if that has a role in depression. So we try to look at all of the different systems of the body but we also try to look at the mental-emotional Inside the lifestyle side, I think, you know, how people live their lives and and coaching them in how to make those shifts, because a lot of conventional providers, they just don’t have the time to do that in the in the medical model, right? We can sit down, we can say, well, healthy diet and exercise are going to fix basically everything. Right. But it’s not a one stop, or one cookie cutter thing where you’re doing this exercise and you’re eating this diet, because everybody is different. We’re all very similar. But we try to focus on how to personalize that medicine. Yes, yeah. And so it’s like treat the cause. There’s physician heal thyself to which is not my favorite. No, that puts some accountability on us. But there’s also that tenant in our philosophy that we are supposed to walk our talk, we are supposed to explore our own health and in that it deepens our understanding, our empathy, our connection with patients as well.

Diva Nagula 06:09
I don’t think I’ve ever met a unhealthy naturopath. There’s so many practitioners that are in
western medicine, that practice medicine, but they are the most unhealthy people that I know.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 06:21
Yeah, it’s think about how sad that is. And it’s because like, there’s all of these pressures to, even residency, I mean, you think about the toll that residency is take on the human body, it’s almost like a hazing, right. But it really is. So let’s see…

Diva Nagula 06:45
So if a patient was to come into your office to see you, and they say, they want to be evaluated, give us a kind of an example of how you would intake that patient, then perform diagnostic procedures and tests. And then later on, I have a treatment plan that’s outlined for that person.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 07:10
So I’ve got two distinct practices that I currently work with. And one of them is like a wellness based internet practice where I work with people all over the world. And what I do with that is I talk to people about everything from their relationship to their significant other, their job, you know, how much they move, what it is, specifically, they’re eating, how much they sleep, any family diseases that run in the genetics. So I try to take a pretty good inventory of what that person’s life looks like, every day, like, do they take supplements? What are their stress levels, etc. And then I do a lot of functional medicine testing, because I do believe in science, I believe in some other esoteric stuff, but I think that….

Diva Nagula 08:02
I think we want to make sure that people understand that you do practice evidence based medicine, you do look at science, you know, it’s not this woowoo type of practice that you employ on your on patients. So there is a fundamental basis of objective data that you collect and use it to treat patients.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 08:20
Absolutely. And luckily, for me, I’m outside of what you know, insurance says I can and cannot do. And so I look at nutrient levels, hormone levels in a deep and meaningful way that usually aren’t covered by insurance unless someone is extremely ill. And I think as far as what we want to do is we also want to prevent disease. I mean, there’s a huge spectrum between like, I feel great, like, I feel, you know, 10 feet tall and bulletproof. And I have a significant chronic disease that needs to be addressed. And we can see in the lab work, there’s a great big spectrum. And so when I pick up stuff early, I can make those changes there. So it doesn’t progress to a more significant disease. And the more that you cover up symptoms, the more likely that is to happen down the road faster and faster for many different reasons. But I look at the micro biome, which is hugely important. And we see now how the microbiome has an effect on basically everything in the body. And we don’t exactly understand, how much or why or exactly how the nuances of it, but we do know that healthy digestion, and that microbiome piece is incredibly important. So I check it and then I can support it. I look at the genetics and the epigenetic aspect of medicine is probably my my current favorite, because it’s so fascinating on how we can give certain nutrients or tell people that eat certain foods, and it just makes their genetic at the basic level stronger. I love that. And so I do a lot of testing, because I love the data. And then I can look at it, you know, I’m looking at the endocrine system, nutritional system, the digestive system, neurologically. And I can look from the top and see where are we really getting the imbalances? And how do we make focused, important changes and supplementation, and food and diet and lifestyle recommendations to make the biggest impact. Because when you think about it, like lifestyle, how you live your life, obviously impacts your health. And people don’t know, I mean, there’s so much information out there. And so that’s a piece of it. And I do a lot of advanced supplementation programs. And obviously, I don’t want people taking supplements in huge amounts, until the end of time. But you do need to replete the body, because we’re biochemical. And so there’s cofactors needed for certain enzymatic systems. And if we can support those enzymatic systems, everything works better. And if you can get the body to repletion, with the supplementation, then you can make changes with diet and actually get some of it from food, at least. But that brings up an environmental and agricultural argument about the nutrient density of our foods as well. I also hope we won’t go down that rabbit hole quite yet. But I do follow up labs to see how people are doing but people are so much more than just labs. Right? And I think that’s another issue with convention, especially when you see thyroid, like people were like, I’m tired, I don’t feel well, like I’m depressed, I have these symptoms. It’s like, well, your thyroid, your TSH is fine. It’s normal. And so we have to actually look at the person and see well, why, if that’s normal, what else is going on? And how do we get this person to… They’re more than just lab work? So I try to take that into account as well. My other practice is a sports medicine practice, right? And that’s, that’s fun, because I help. It’s like, being a, you know, Formula One car mechanic in a lot of ways, like you have these, you know, specimens of humanity, they’re bigger, stronger, faster like that, than basically anybody else on the planet, and making those little tweaks so that they repair better, so that they can perform better it’ kind of fun too.

Diva Nagula 12:25
Correct me if I’m wrong, but naturopathic practitioners are recognized by some states, but not
all states, right?

Dr. Heather Wdowin 12:35
Yes. And so we are not recognized nationally yet. So the Medicare system doesn’t pick us up. And it’s a big political process. But we are licensed in most of most of the Northeast, and then most of the West. But like in the middle, there are that you can get an online degree from naturopathic school, and say that you’re a naturopath if it’s not a licensed state. And so that’s the difference. I went to four years of graduate school and had to see patients, it wasn’t just like an online, vitamin C is good for you.

Diva Nagula 13:13
I understand that. There’s some states that allow naturopaths to prescribe medications.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 13:18
Absolutely. Yep. So a lot of like, some have really good scopes. So my primary licenses in Arizona, which has the best scope, and so that’s where I’m classified as a primary care physician. Whereas in California, I can’t call myself a physician because of the laws. But in California, I can prescribe hormones, isn’t it interesting and natural substances. So each, each state has different laws, showing how we can how we can practice in those states are delineating how and unlike like nurse practitioners and physician assistants, we can practice autonomously, but sometimes in certain states, you need to have an MD or a DO supervising you in order to prescribe medication now. California is one of those. But primarily, and then not every naturopath practices the same way, like, I don’t usually prescribe medications, I think that there’s a huge amount of things that I can do to not necessitate that. But you know what, sometimes your blood pressure’s 190 over 120. That’s probably a good time to give a blood pressure med while we work on the underlying stuff. But I just gave my son an antibiotic last week because he was so sick and the natural things weren’t working. And so there’s a time and a place, but there’s a lot of stuff that we can do before that, I think.

Diva Nagula 14:52
I think that’s great. And I think it’s really important to understand that there’s a whole spectrum of the way to practice health. You know, there are some physicians that are so anti any other non Western based philosophy. And I think that’s a disservice to patients. And on the other side, there are naturopaths, who are against all Western forms of medicine, and won’t work with any other Western providers, and they feel naturopathy or homeopathy is the way to go. And I think that’s also doing a disservice for patients to absolutely, in my mind, it’s that the functional medicine practitioners or the integrative medicine practitioners, I feel those are the ones that seemed to espouse all disciplines of medicine, and they are able to give you the best of both worlds.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 15:43
Right? You know, what I think the best kind of medicine is? It’s the kind that works!

Diva Nagula 15:50
And the kind that actually where the patient feels like they’ve been heard.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 16:11
You know, unfortunately, there’s so much data a lot of people are providers that are against what I do like, well, there’s no data, there’s tons of data, it just on average, it takes 17 years for new research to make it into the medical model. So, I mean, there’s tons of data, it’s just, it’s a very political process.

Diva Nagula 17:14
And one of your expertise or passions is really utilizing the mind body connection in healing. In my book, I actually discussed this, I wish I had dedicated more time to put energy into this focus. But there’s so much to discuss that I was only able to address only a few sections in my book about this. This is so important in my mind to assist with healing, and how do you utilize the mind body connection for healing purposes?

Dr. Heather Wdowin 17:47
So I do all of this, heavy science biochemical functional medicine piece, right. But I absolutely 100% believe that the mind can heal the body of anything. And everything. I mean, you look at the placebo effect you have, right? I mean, really, it’s like 30%… that’s how anti-depressants work. But it’s like when people believe that something’s going to work. It does. And yet, unfortunately, we get these mental patterns, or we have blocks, like, you can want to believe that your mind can heal your depression, and it absolutely can. But if you’re too depressed biochemically to really move past those blocks, I think that the biochemical support of that can help the spirit and the mind move through it. And so I think that moving hand in hand, it just makes it a little bit easier if you have more serotonin. And so through school, we were exposed to different Mind Body therapies. But we didn’t really delve very deeply into it, we did a little bit of EMDR a little bit of like, the Emotional Freedom Technique with the tapping and that never really resonated with me. So I was trained in hypnotherapy, because I loved the idea of using the subconscious to help with like programming, right, like you can put these thoughts in and program it, kind of like a computer for people. And I’ve had a lot of really great success with that and using it as guided meditations and supporting people to meditate on their own and make that experience a priority in their life. And so I can help with facilitating I do some sports medicine, visualization. I mean, just about every professional athlete has some sort of visualization that they do. And if we do it for our health, it’s incredible. Powerful, I almost lost my leg in a car accident my senior year in college, and the surgeon saved my leg, they saved my life, but they never expected me to get better, right, they’re like, Well you’re probably never gonna run again, you’re never gonna do this and that again, and you’re going to be bedridden healing from this for a long time. And I write, and I ended up healing it and getting the external fixator out three month, like three times faster than they ever expected. And what I did every night, I meditated and I just thought about everything. And I was lucky because I had a biology background, right. So I was like, visualizing all of the little molecules coming together, and, you know, fixing up that leg, but it’s that, I think, was one of the big breakthroughs of my life. And that and also, I think that we all come face to face with our mortality, or we have a health crisis at some time in our life. And it just depends on the mindset of, am I going to let this define me? And am I going to identify with this idea and internalize it and make this part of the rest of my life? Or am I going to do something differently? And so I try to empower people to do something differently. Because you can be better you can heal.

Diva Nagula 21:29
People who have I mean, there’s, I totally agree with you, there’s definitely the power of the mind that can facilitate healing. But some people have, I don’t want to say I don’t want to be derogatory and say, a weak mindset. But some people don’t have that strong of a mindset. And how do you empower those people and coach them, and coerce them to utilize their mind in positive thinking, as compared to someone who’s very strong in their mindset, and will have an easier time in using mind-body techniques to facilitate healing processes?

Dr. Heather Wdowin 22:04
I think hypnotherapy is a great way to jumpstart it. And that’s why I chose it because you can relax people down and then you can say, you can implant those little programs into their subconscious. And it’s, it’s a way to, like have them step up. Plus, I mean, they’re getting the relaxation of it. They’re getting the, you know, the balancing of the sympathetic and the parasympathetic systems. And I’m not a big believer in talk therapy, because I think that it just gets people in a loop. This happened to me, and then this happened to me, and then it’s like… and I’ve done it. I’ve done my fair share of it.

Diva Nagula 22:44
I’ve done it too but it didn’t help me. But it’s like, you don’t process anything. I mean, the
energy is still left in your body.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 22:54
Yeah. And I think that, you know, people need community in it. And yet, you don’t want it to be a negative community. You know, like the support groups could be seen as a possibly negative community. As far as like, this is my experience, this is what I’ve been going through and like, then people can expect well, you know, this person had all of these terrible things happen on this medication, we see it on chat boards, and all of this, like you’re feeding on, like the identification of the disease and what can happen. But I think that when you empower people from the ground up, as far as, you know, helping them feel like they actually have the power to do something and shift that belief. It’s baby steps. But that guided meditation, the hypnosis with a provider, like that connection between the provider and the patient, can help them to become a little bit stronger. As far as yeah, I think I will meditate when I’m home, and I will watch my thoughts and there’s so many resources now, they don’t even have to be in the office. But you can go on YouTube and find 50 million different supportive meditations, you can watch podcasts like, I love Dr. Joe Dispenza. And the work that he’s doing and Gregg Braden, as far as like all of that wild and awesome neurological exploration of how you can shift that, but I think information is very important. And that’s why I like listening to those but also just allowing people to understand that they are okay, wherever they are, they have support and implanting those programs where when a negative thought happens, I’m going to choose something else is tremendously powerful.

Diva Nagula 24:48
Just the realization and of itself is is a gateway to the healing process.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 24:53
Yes, in my own experience, because I’ve been doing a lot of this for myself. I mean, I don’t think never ends. You can make big jumps, where you’re like, Well, I’m not going to pay attention to that I’m going to pay attention to different parts of it. Or I’m going to do the biochemical piece now and then yet that evolution… I majored in neurobiology, and then I had a minor in sociology, because I wanted to have the nature versus nurture of consciousness. Right. And so it’s still a really interesting self exploration, because I listened to a lot of stuff. And I was thinking, well, I don’t really have negative thoughts about myself, right? Like, I don’t really feel like but then when I paid attention, oh, I did. Right. So like actually paying attention, and then being like, where does that come from? Does it really matter? How do I shift this? So I’m not doing all of this negative talk? And I think that’s such a big piece of when you look in the mirror, what do you see?

Diva Nagula 25:54
Yeah, I agree. I mean, I think we’re all geared in that way, have negative talks in our mind, because it’s a result of our comparisons to what we believe ourselves to be. And it’s not good for our psyche. if we can sit there and have more positive thoughts in our mind and more compassion for ourselves. I think it is so positive in its impact on our overall health.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 26:23
100%! Did you ever see the movie? What the Bleep Do We Know?

Diva Nagula 26:28
Yes. Yeah, I did. It’s funny story behind that. But I’ll get into that later. In fact, in my book, I talk
I talk about that movie.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 26:35
Do you? So my favorite scene, I think, is when they’re dancing around with the IV poles, which is probably do you remember that one. But it’s also like how we were addicted to these negative emotions. And Dr. Dispenza talks about that, as far as we have these patterns, but if you can do the pattern just disrupts, then you can break free of that negative patterning, but I don’t want to… it’s a 20 year old movie, so I won’t ruin anything. But at the end the characters like just looking at herself with love… usually we pick those parts about and social, you know, social media feeds that looking at a magazine increases depression? …our whole culture is pushing towards sickness, and hate everything, and hatred and fear? And so how do you disconnect from that, and I think it’s also an important piece of you and I, as providers we hold no sacred space for our patients as far as like you, we believe that they will get better. And, you know, that’s the best part of medicine. And for the people that we love, the pets that we love, there’s so much love that we have to give to others. And yet, we don’t easily turn that back on ourselves.

Diva Nagula 28:06
That’s such a good point. I mean, you’re not going to sit there. And I mean, most people will probably read to me that have a dog does something bad, like accidentally pees on the floor? I mean, you’re not going to sit there and beat the dog up and, and scold the dog, if you’re not going to be doing that, why would you do that yourself?and beat yourself up for something that you did incorrectly or, or didn’t achieve something, there’s no reason to beat yourself up. It’s all about having compassion for yourself. And that goes along with having self love, and all that aids in the mind body.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 28:42
And think about the thoughts that I mean, those make people sick, I believe, right? I think the root of just about every disease out there, even if you look at infectious diseases, right? There is a mental emotional root. And whether it’s you’re stressing yourself out, and you’re sabotaging your immune system, like for infections, or whatever, but, or this internalization of stress, and having that cause issues in the gut or issues with the heart. And so, gentleness, and releasing those emotions in a healthy way and talking to ourselves and treating ourselves with love, like self care is the hardest thing to do. And I don’t understand why? As a parent, like, I have a small child. And it’s been so interesting to look at how I was raised, and the patterns I have from that, and they come up with him. And then I have to, if I’m aware of it, I can stop and be like, well, I don’t want him to necessarily internalize this. So how do I shift? No, it’s still Yeah, like, I’m not going to feed him lollipops all day long. But there’s a balance.

Diva Nagula 30:03
Yeah. And I actually point that out in my book. I mean, one of the main tenants that I stress in the book is how crucial it is to have a positive mindset. And in my experiences, I feel that with a positive mindset, you’ll attract positivity around you. And the corollary is also true. If you have a negative mindset, it’s going to attract, negativity around you. And I think, specifically with patients who are experiencing or going through dire health, whether it’s chronic disease conditions or cancer, it is really important to try in the best possible way to have a positive mindset. And, for example, I have a relative who unfortunately passed away with pancreatic cancer. This typically when a person has a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, typically you have three to four months at best before you pass, this particular person is known for his livelihood of being such a jovial, positive person, because of his mindset, he had to go through all the rigors of chemo and additional medical therapies. But because of this mindset, he actually lived a year and a half more than the traditional three to four month window that patients have when they are first diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. And so it’s all about positivity. And I can’t stress enough how important that is also, since we’re kind of like in the realm of talking about cancer now oncology, and I wanted to go back to you because you are also expressing an interest and you’re soon to be board certified in naturopathic oncology. And I didn’t know that that was a subspecialty that existed in naturopathic medicine. So that’s fascinating, because for me as a cancer patient, I would imagine that people would come to when they’re first diagnosed, or when they want to continue to maintain themselves in the status of remission, right?

Dr. Heather Wdowin 32:09
Yes. And then there’s also the patients that have been told there’s nothing else to do get your
affairs in order, right?

Diva Nagula 32:19 Yes, that’s true.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 32:21
And I actually, I still study a bit of it, but I let that that board certification go. Because it was so hard on my heart to see. Yeah. And it was something that I’ve always been interested in, because it’s the plague of our of our generation, in a way, right. It’s all it’s going to pass heart disease as far as the number one killer of Americans if it hasn’t already already. So there’s a group, like the Naturopathic Oncology Association, and they have pretty rigorous study of like, how do you supplement based on like, obviously, science, right, and double blind controlled placebo for people to go along with their chemotherapy and their radiation. It basically comes down to what their flashes like melatonin, green tea, and you know, like vitamin C, and then like, the mind body piece of it. Are you familiar with the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, yeah. CPCA, they used to employ naturopaths they don’t anymore, is going to shift in the politics of it, but because it’s like, if you look at it with cancer, and so I still do a lot of work with it. But I don’t necessarily subscribe to that board. Because I don’t think that they were right, on the forefront of what really could be done. And so I work with a different educational group now about it. And, for example, everybody knows that cancer cells can only metabolize certain forms of fuel, which is primarily glucose, right? And yet, most of convention doesn’t… they are so afraid of you going… it’s better for you to keep weight on using whatever means necessary, rather than looking at the blood sugars. And so diet has a huge role in that, you know, cancer is an inflammatory disease. It’s insane. It’s it’s absolutely insane. Yeah, just you know, drink insurance. It’s, you know, keep your weight on. Oh, perfect, right. Gonna get wheat protein, soy protein, like milk, protein, corn… chemical soup of nastiness. Now, how is that? How is that going to help but if you look at the inflammatory piece, inflammation drives everything, right? So inflammation, toxicity, certainly They will drive whatever disease your body’s most likely to, to express. But there’s also like vitamin C IVs, there’s really good research showing that vitamin C actually helps chemotherapies work better.

Diva Nagula 35:18 Yep, I’ve read that too.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 35:19
Yeah, there’s tons of studies, and most of them, there’s one or a few that it doesn’t actually help in studies. But basically every single other one, yeah, it helps you need lower doses of chemotherapy, and it supports against the negative side effects. And that’s a big thing, as far as quality of life. But if you can support the body, and its ability to heal with all of those, and protect from the negative effects of chemotherapy and radiation, then it makes it much more likely to stick, right, because unfortunately, you can get cancer the first time and a lot of cases, but it’s the remission. And the fact that chemotherapy and radiation actually make treatment resistant cancer stem cells, that then when you come out of remission, then the chemo therapies, and those conventional therapies don’t necessarily work as well, because you’ve got treatment resistant cells.

Diva Nagula 36:27
Not to mention that the lifestyle choices and the lifestyle changes by the patient have been implemented, it’s not to the fault of the patient is more or less the fault of how Western medicine addresses post cancer care. And it’s not a one and done thing, right. And that’s what I really want to communicate with the people the audiences and with people who are reading my book, and if I get into speaking engagements, that’s where I really want to address it’s it for treatment doesn’t end with the last day of chemo or immunotherapy or radiation therapy, the actual treatment begins after that those treatments are completed. It’s an ongoing process of lifestyle changes. And that’s a diet. That’s the mind. And that’s the spirit. And that’s the fundamental tenets of my book, and my belief system as well. And I feel that that’s where I want to implement and change and foster a change for people. And I’m glad you mentioned that, because I think that’s one of the take home points is when you’re diagnosed with cancer, it’s it’s a horrible, horrible plight that you were faced dealing with. And unfortunately, it’s not a simple remedy. And I think that’s what happens in our society. It’s a tendency to be like, oh, we want a quick fix, oh, in six months, you’re done with your treatment and you’ll go back to your normal self, but then that’s not the case. And I’m learning about myself. And I still feel that I need to address my body and my mind and my spirit in positive ways where I need to focus and be diligent about otherwise, I can slip back and go into relapse.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 38:16
Yeah, I think that’s true of everything. As far as like, when you get diagnosed with something, it’s a flag. It’s like autoimmune diseases, right? When you find an autoimmune disease, and somebody’s like, I’ve reversed autoimmune diseases and countless patients, but it’s not cured. Right? Like it shows that you have the tendency like this is the tendency when your body is unhealthy, and it’s out of balance, and you’re not living your lifestyle in a way that benefits the body, this is what you will slide into. And so it’s this constant reminder that you need to eat well, and you need to move. The other thing that I would say, Diva, is detoxification, think about all of that toxicity that drives so many cancer processes. Right. And so if you’re still microwaving things in plastic, and eating food that’s covered in Roundup, and not helping the body detoxify all of these chemicals, we live in a toxic soup in the environment, and a lot of those things have been proven to cause genetic mutations that can lead to cancer processes.

Diva Nagula 39:34
And the other thing is, is that you mentioned the autoimmune diseases and I’ve noticed through just my friends circle or through posts that my friends make on Facebook, more and more people that are like our age or younger, are getting diagnosed more are labeled with rheumatological conditions, rheumatoid arthritis and autoimmunes, they’re being placed on these heavy duty biologics. And, you know, once you’re on this biologic, it’s like, there’s no turning back, you’ve really gotten yourself into a situation where you have to continue to medication. And you’re going to be suffering from consequences down the road for impaired immune system suppressing this. And there is an alternative. And the alternative is really address the root cause of the problem and not put a bandaid and placed these medications on a patient to take the rest of their life. And that kind of really infuriates me because there is another way. And most these physicians who prescribe these biologics just don’t know what the other ways are, and aren’t open to that. Right. That’s what I really want to foster a change. And it’s not necessaily about changing your mindset, prescribing habits, it’s just being open to the idea, these opportunities will always exist in terms of medical management. In most of these rheumatological diseases, or autoimmune diseases, it’s not a life or death situation where you literally have to place them on a medication for them to survive. It’s not like cancer, write off all other options, such as detoxification, such as changing lifestyle, such as employing mind body modalities, and then if those don’t work, then okay, all right, well, I’ve exhausted all that, let me go ahead and put you on this medication. And unfortunately, we’ve exhausted everything. And it’s easy to dismiss those types of remedies, because of lack of understanding number one, and number two, because there’s no time involved in communicating these options to the patients, and I have midspan that you might have with the patient, and on a day. I’m glad that there are practitioners that are like you that can sit there and spend, you know, an hour or more time with each patient, whether it’s online or in person, and get exposed to multiple different modalities and different ways of healing. And so thank you for for what you do.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 42:11
well, thank you for being open, because I have sent research with my patients to take to their endocrinologist or their oncologist as far as like, this is what is being like, I have a naturopath. This is what why they’re doing what they’re doing. Here are the research studies supporting that, please call her she’s very happy to talk to you about this, you know how many calls I’ve gotten? Zero!

Diva Nagula 42:41
Really? And that’s after you sending evidence based medicine to these? I understand people that are Western practitioners that are like, I’m not gonna listen to a practitioner who is not an MD. Because they don’t present. They don’t practice evidence based. But when you sit there and flop Western based evidence based medicine evidence and research literature, that proves it, they still don’t give you a call and have the courtesy to give you a call. So that’s frustrating. But on a really positive note, I do know that there are practices that are like you that are willing to see patients. So we’re kind of running out of time, but I wanted to ask you if my listeners are wanting to reach out to you, and what’s the best way they can find you?

Dr. Heather Wdowin 43:40
You can you can find www.naturopathicmd.com, which is the wellness based website that I run, and you can just contact us through there. And then we have options you can look through as far as like the testing, it’s got a lot of information and studies and recommendations on there. I also have a podcast called The Bad Girls Guide to Living Well, if you want to hear more about… it’s because nobody’s perfect. That’s why I named it like nobody’s perfect. Like, I don’t want you to have to live like a saint and never eat another thing that brings you joy, right? Like, or stay up late and drink wine, right? It’s just how do we protect our bodies from the things that we do that aren’t optimal? And if you live your life 95% Well, then you can misbehave 5% of the time. I think as long as you don’t have an active disease, like if you have an active disease, then you have to be good to reverse it. And then we find the balance. And so that’s the best place to find me.

Diva Nagula 44:40
Thanks, Heather. Thanks for the work that you do. And thank you so much for being a guest.

Dr. Heather Wdowin 44:44
Oh, thanks, Diva. It was really good to see you. And thanks for writing that book. I mean, it’s it’s huge. It’s really important. Yeah, it’s really important.