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Hey Laura, do amber necklaces help with teething pain?

Carissa writes:

Can you tell me about amber necklaces and the benefits of babies/toddlers wearing them? A quick Google search told me they are to help relieve pain from teething. . .is there anything else? I noticed your girls wear them; what has been your experience with them?

Amber has been used for centuries for its topical analgesic effects. The succinic acid in amber is said to reduce inflammation. Of course, as with many ancient natural remedies, amber has been vaunted as a veritable cure-all with not a whole lot of solid scientific backing to prove it. It does have a very interesting cultural history, which you can read about here.

In my research, I kept coming across the mention...

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Hey Laura, what are the basic terms of acupuncture?

Becky S writes:

Hey Laura,
I am currently undergoing treatment for all kinds of ailments using acupuncture. I am specifically interested in knowing about the terms that were used to describe me (hot and wet). What other terms might I hear during acupuncture?

I am being treated for pain, infertility, irritation (emotional), and digestive track issues. I have had 4 treatments in 4 weeks. I have had noticeable pain reduction (severe inflammation in my sacrum ) and almost no digestive problems (my doc wanted me to have a scope to check for Crones, but I haven’t had any flare ups in a long time). As for the infertility, my cycle is progressing quite well with noticeable improvement in cervical...

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Hey Laura, what can I do for my painful periods?

Anonymous writes:

I read somewhere that there’s no medical/health reason for a woman to have a period every month.  Even one of the nurses at my gyno’s office mentioned that she just takes her birth control pills continuously so as not to have one.  I can’t put my finger on why, but this seems strange and wrong to me.  However, I have nothing to back my opinion except that that’s how women were designed and it’s best not mess with Design (and maybe that should be reason enough).  I have never taken my pills continuously, though it’s extremely tempting as my period wrecks havoc on my whole body.  Every month I get sick to my stomach, lose my appetite, and energy, and get cramps...

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Hey Laura, what should I do about my chronic migraines?

Ashley writes:

Laura! Help! My headaches are ruling my life and I’m willing to try anything to find some long-term relief! I feel like I’ve heard it all (as a young child some doctor put me on antidepressants, eek!) and simply cannot be told one more time that I just need to “stress less” or pop a pill. Please help me find my way out of nearly 20 years of debilitating headaches.

Okay, so I’m assuming that you know all about potential food triggers for migraines, right? If you aren’t already, you need to be keeping a migraine diary. Trying to eliminate all the possible food triggers is nearly impossible, but scrupulously writing down what you eat for a week and tracking your migraine...

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Hey Laura, are there effective natural pain relievers for arthritis?

Emily writes:

My mum has arthritis in her thumbs and it gives her a lot of pain. I want to look for something to help her but I dont really know where to start. Do you know of any herbal (or just generally non toxic) remedies that I can suggest to her to relieve it.

Luckily, there are a lot of effective and natural ways to combat the pain and inflammation of osteoarthritis!

Diet and nutrition
Probably the most important thing your mom can do is to change her diet. Avoiding inflammatory foods can really help…you guessed it: reduce inflammation! Dairy, sugary, salty, and fatty foods, nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, etc.), alcohol and caffeine all contribute to inflammation....

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Hey Laura, what can I do for my infant’s digestive issues?

Harmony writes:

Dear Laura, my 2-week old daughter is projectile vomiting and is awake for about four hours a night in pain, what do I do?

This is very familiar territory for me, as a mom of two babies with food intolerances. Can I just say right off that I don’t buy the “Happy Spitter” theory? That if your baby vomits all the time but is gaining weight that it’s “A laundry issue, not a medical issue”?

If your baby’s body is rejecting sustenance, there is likely something wrong and long-term GI damage is most likely occurring.

Take action now and avoid prolonged health issues. Gut health is vitally important for immunity; many cases of allergies and asthma are rooted in poor gut health...Continue reading

Hey Laura, how do I go gluten free?

This question has been at the forefront of quite a few conversations I’ve been having with people over the past couple weeks, so I thought I’d write up a Gluten Free Beginner’s Guide, Laura-style.

*****  Here’s my standard disclaimer: I’m not a doctor. Nothing I say here should be used to self-diagnose. If you suspect you have a gluten allergy you need to talk to your doctor. You should also embark on dietary modification adventures with care; talk to a certified nutritionist for help!  *****

I have the privilege of experience with gluten (and much, much more!) elimination diets because I seem to give birth to babies with Multiple Food Protein Intolerances. That means that my breastmilk...

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