Woodford Files – December 2010 / January 2011

What an exciting year this has been for Vitality. In 2010, our coverage spanned everything from the dangers of fluoride in drinking water, to the intelligent revolution of citizens saying no to corporate health care fraud, to the best natural solutions for thyroid disorders. Overall, we’ve covered a dizzying array of health politics, alternative medicine treatments, and stories of recovery from serious disease. And there’s more of that in this issue.

Since it’s our last hurrah for 2010, I’d like to pause for a moment to tip my hat to those I consider Heroes of the Health Movement. These are folks who work tirelessly to educate and inspire, while striving to protect our access to the healthy products we hold dear:

1) Helke Ferrie, a wife, mother, and grandmother, became a health activist in the late 1990s after recovering from myasthenia gravis through the use of alternative medicine. Since then she has worked relentlessly to help us become informed consumers and expose the corporate fraud that is rampant in today’s health care system. As the founder of KOS Publishing, she has launched many important publications, and remains the most ferocious hell raiser who I have ever known.

2) Lawyer Shawn Buckley, Herbalist Rick DeSylva, activists Trueman Tuck and Julie Rickert have also worked diligently behind the scenes for years, often at great personal sacrifice, in the campaign to preserve our freedom of access to natural health products. It’s been a long and hard fight, but these folks have never waivered in their commitment. They are, in fact, doing our dirty work in the trenches of political activism, and I hope their efforts are well rewarded.

Meantime, as a counterpoint to the ‘get vaccinated’ mania that seems to descend on big media outlets at this time of year, here are some of my favourite tricks for a healthy, flu-free winter season:

– Homeopathy: Oscillococcinum is a good choice at the first sign of a sniffle, which in fact worked very well to keep Jody Hatt’s family from succumbing to sickness during long hours worked at the (wildly successful) Whole Life Expo.

– Vitamin D: Since there ain’t no sunshine in these parts until sometime in April, I’m loading up on Vitamin D to keep my immune system humming. I haven’t had a flu vaccination since I was knee high to a grasshopper, and likely never will.

– Andrographis: This is just about the nastiest tasting herb you will ever encounter, but if you’re coming down with a cold or flu, a few shots of Andrographis tincture will often stop it in its tracks.

– Chinese medicine: I haven’t been to a Western doctor in years, and have no plans to do so anytime soon. Instead, I visit a Chinese medicine practitioner every week, get acupuncture head to toe, and presto I’m ready to take on the world again. It’s a great way to recharge your adrenals, which is essential for preventing depression, fatigue, insomnia, hot flashes, and cancer (acupuncture is very anti-inflammatory).

See you in February, with bells on.

Julia Woodford, Editor ~ Vitality Magazine

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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