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Community Medicine Circles: Integrative, Ecological Medicine

View all past recordings here:

Join Dr. Anna O'Malley in an exploration of the health and resilience that comes from attuning to what our beings need to be well, and the ecological connection between caring for ourselves and caring for the Earth.

Open to all, these calls are also a component of Anna's primary care practice within the local community health center, and are an aspect of her initiative to develop models of care both within and alongside our health care system that allow for depth of understanding, connection, and ecological consciousness in our healing work. As in all sectors, healthcare is in need of an ecological paradigm shift.

Our intention is to weave connection, breakdown isolation, improve health and health sovereignty, keep ourselves out of the hospital, and to make ourselves more available for a joyful, vibrantly healthy life.

On each call we will explore a different aspect of our human health and wellbeing, with a focus on how our bodies work, what they need to be in balance, how our choices and relationships (including with plants and the natural world) can optimize our health and bring us into a reciprocal relationship with the Earth, and an examination of structural and psychological barriers to changing behaviors. We will layer in the science regarding how socioeconomic and racial disparities impact our health, and what we can do about it, in community. Building skills and understanding empowers us to be healthier, and less likely to be dependent on medications that may cause harm. Growing culinary and medicinal plants is a path toward a healing relationship with yourself and the Earth, as well as food sovereignty. This is a community concern--only when we center these conversations on justice and inclusivity for all members in our community do we collectively become well.

These "circles" will be held on Zoom, and we will allow time for questions and sharing following the presentation. 

This series is a collaboration between the Coastal Health Alliance and Natura Institute for Ecology and Medicine, and is held by donation. Your support is deeply appreciated and allows us to make this content accessible to all. Thank you!

Please register for each session individually with the links provided.

September 14, 6:30-7:45 pm

Healthy Heart and Blood Vessels

The body contains 60,000 miles of blood vessels! Keeping the blood vessels healthy and unblocked is essential in preventing heart attacks, strokes, kidney damage--really all parts of the body need nourishing, healthy circulation. Join us in learning in-depth what the blood vessels and the heart itself needs to be healthy, and how to prevent (and even reverse) disease, with an emphasis on inflammation, lifestyle, the mind-body connection and when medications are useful.

October 12, 6:30-7:45 pm

Optimizing Cognition, Preventing Dementia

As our population ages, the number of people living with dementia is on the rise. Dementia takes a heavy toll, creating emotional, logistical and financial strain on all involved in caring for people with this devastating condition. We will look at the science on the risk factors for dementia, and explore the many ways we can reduce our risk of developing it.

November 9, 6:30-7:45 pm

Mental and Emotional Wellbeing

We are living in a very challenging time. Many of us are suffering greatly. Rates of suicide are on the rise, especially among young people. Join us for an exploration of some of the ways we can support our mental and emotional wellbeing from an integrative medicine perspective, as well as when and how medicines and different types of therapy can help.

December 14, 6:30-7:45 pm

Achieving and Maintaining a Healthy Weight

Really? We are going to talk about our weight right in the middle of the holiday season? Well, yes, actually right as we go into it--gathering support around us, refreshing our memories on strategies to avoid overeating, identifying stress-triggers, keeping a positive, loving and accepting frame around the whole thing....this is actually the perfect time for this conversation. Join us!

January 11, 6:30-7:45 pm

Healthy Blood Sugar: Preventing and Reversing Diabetes

Our bodies function best when our blood sugar is in a narrow, healthy range. With age, genetics, and a certain amount of exposure to sweets and refined carbohydrates (like bread, pasta, rice, tortillas), our bodies lose the ability to keep our blood sugar in a healthy range. This wreaks havoc on all parts of our body. Join us in discussing ways prevent this, or if we already have pre-diabetes or diabetes, how we can help our bodies get back into normal sugar balance.

February 8, 6:30-7:45 pm

Addiction

In case you might be thinking--this doesn't apply to me--think again. 💛 A majority of us have, at one point or another, engaged in some behavior that has caused us harm, that we can't seem to stop. If you are blessed to not have this apply to you, undoubtedly a loved one has suffered in this way. We will be taking a big picture look at this challenging reality, a framework for breaking the pattern of cravings, and ways to support yourself in setting a new pattern of behavior in your life, with compassion.

March 8, 6:30-7:45 pm

Women's Health: Fertility, Contraception, and the Menopausal transition

We women have a beautifully complex physiology that allows us-if we so choose-to bring life into being. Now more than ever it is essential to understand this complexity and understand our options to ensure we determine whether and when we become pregnant. We will also discuss the complexity of peri-menopause and menopause, contextualizing the whole conversation in our current societal reality, misogyny and all, and celebrating the ways we women can support and lift each other up.

April 19, 6:30-7:45 pm

GI Health: Optimizing Digestion and Elimination

Our digestive system. It brings nourishment into our beings, is the interface with the outside world, and eliminates waste products. When all is well, we barely notice it's miraculous functioning. When it is not--suffering as well as very real health challenges arise. Join is in exploring how to keep things moving in the right direction, happily, in our gastrointestinal system, and the ways in which connection with the Earth-the literal earth-supports our function and microbiome.

May 10, 6:30-7:45 pm

Preventing Falls and Fractures, or, Strengthening Bones and Balance

As we age, one of the most potentially devastating things that can happen is a fall, especially one that breaks a hip. A broken bone leads to loss of mobility which leads to weakness/deconditioning which leads to further loss of function and independence...truly, an ounce of prevention is invaluable. Join us to discuss ways of preventing/treating osteopenia and osteoporosis, improving balance, and preventing falls.

June 14, 6:30-7:45 pm

Healthy Sleep (without Drugs)

Getting good sleep is essential for all parts of our health-from our immune function to our weight and blood sugar balance, our heart health, our mood, our cognition, and beyond. And yet for so many of us it remains elusive. Join us as we dive deep into supporting healthy sleep, and how to minimize risky pharmaceutical use.

July 12, 6:30-7:45 pm

Our Lungs, our Breath: Protecting and Supporting Respiratory Health

Our lungs are the delicate interface between the air we breathe and our circulatory system--anything that harms this delicate organ puts the rest of our health at risk. Join us as we talk about our lungs, our breath, and the many ways we can support our respiratory health, including during fire season here in the West.

Thank you for all you are doing to care for yourself,
your community, and the Earth.