Woodford Files: New Vitality website + Whole Life Expo

Whew, what a summer! From floods to hurricanes to eclipses, it seemed like the earth’s evolutionary turbulence has been extreme this year. And we at Vitality have been doing some evolving of our own as we worked all summer on three big projects:

  1. A powerful new website that will launch in mid-September with all sorts of bells and whistles to entertain and inform you;
  2. A big honking September issue, which you now hold in your hands;
  3. A mighty 31st annual Whole Life Expo that is bringing hundreds of amazing exhibitors and speakers together under one roof for three days on November 3, 4, and 5.

With so much powerful energy swirling around, I sometimes found myself staggering under the impact of it, almost losing my equilibrium. That’s when I realized that these wildly wonderful times are calling for us to to cultivate inner balance and core strength if we are to navigate such intense waves of change and evolution effectively. So here’s a few strategies that I found helpful:

  1. We all need a sense of inner purpose to provide a rudder for our ship, so time spent going within – through yoga, meditation, qi qong, or even a walk in the woods – can help us find it. These quiet moments, snatched from a hectic day, can infuse our lives with an intuitive sense of what is the best direction to take in each moment.
  2. We all need a good night’s sleep if we are to face the day with enthusiasm. For me that means avoiding the TV, cellphone, and computer late at night because these devices emit a blue light that blocks melatonin (the hormone that puts you to sleep) which can lead to insomnia. (See News Briefs for more on that.) At the same time, I like to use various natural sleep aids to ease me into la la land, including magnesium, St. John’s Wort, and lavender essential oil.
  3. The solar plexus, our power centre, is nourished by good digestion and elimination. These functions benefit from digestive enzymes taken with meals, and probiotics before bed, both of which can keep our plumbing humming no matter how much stress punches us in the guts. (Also, see Dr. Rona’s report on best natural remedies for heartburn, GERD, and indigestion.)

As we charge forward into the fall season armed with such great tools for healthy living, we must also pause for a moment to say goodbye to a champion of natural medicine. Click through to this tribute by Helke Ferrie to Dr. Paul Jaconello, one of Toronto’s most beloved doctors, who died on July 23. After decades of pushing the frontiers of integrative medicine, Dr. Jaconello had amassed a huge bevy of adoring fans, me among them, all of whom appreciated his commitment to his craft. His clinic was a hotbed of alternative treatments including chelation therapy, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, nutritional medicine, homeopathy, and more that helped people recover from serious illnesses. Thankfully, the Jaconello Wellness Centre plans to carry on his legacy by providing a range of integrative medicine services into the forseeable future. We wish them the very best.

Happy fall equinox,

Julia Woodford

Julia Woodford founded Vitality Magazine in 1989, and has been its Editor-in-Chief for the past 30 years. Prior to a career in publishing, her studies included Political Economics at York University, Journalism at Ryerson University, and Psychology, PhysEd, and Anthropology at University of Toronto. She remains a lifelong student of herbalism, nutritional medicine, and the healing arts to this day. You can read her columns on the Vitality website. She is also the Show Manager for Whole Life Expo, Canada’s largest showcase of natural health and green living. Learn more at the Expo website In 2018 she received a “Hall of Fame” award from National Nutrition. In 2019, she was nominated for a “Person of the Year” award by National Nutrition.

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