3 Ways to Improve Your Mood in a Minute


Ever feel yourself fall into a funk?  Wake up on the wrong side of the bed?  React negatively when a text message comes in?  Maybe you just need to shake it off and change your perspective.  Try these three super easy, yet scientific ways to improve your mood in less than a minute.


Breathe deeply

1. Take a deep breath. 

I know, it sounds super cliché, “just breathe”.  But it is actually true.  Ever notice how your breathing changes with certain moods.  Perhaps short, quick breaths when you are angry or crying.  Anxiety may make it feel like you can’t breathe at all.  But when you are happy, do you even notice that you are breathing?  Take a long, deep slow breath.  Breathe in for the count of four seconds, hold your breath for seven seconds and then breathe out for eight seconds.  Do this three times.  This slow, methodic breathing helps to trigger the vagus nerve which is in charge several things, like your heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure.  So go ahead, take a deeeeeep breathe and you’ll start to relax, automatically.


You don’t have to bounce this high 😉

2. Bounce! 

Bouncing has been shown to increase the amount of oxygen to the cells and tissues in your body.  Bouncing up and down stimulates the lymphatic system, improves digestion and elimination by speeding up the metabolism.  It’s a very low impact cardiovascular workout. The simple act of bouncing helps to fight fatigue and manage stress.  Why wouldn’t you just stand up and bounce up and down on your heels for a minute?



3. Dance

Move your body.  Motion affects emotion.  Shake your booty.  Stand up and shake it off.  Put on a fun, dance song and rock out.  By just moving your body, it stimulates the nervous system.  There is a two-way communication between the brain and the body, both impacting each other.  By utilizing some exercise, it makes the sympathetic nervous system less reactive.  Less reactivity leads to less anxiety, lower overall heart rate and lower blood pressure.  You only have to move for a minute, but if you make it through the whole song, your body will thank you!

Give it a try! The only thing you have to lose is your bad mood.

Have fun on the dance floor!  Dr. V

Are You Surviving or Thriving in Today’s Toxic World?

There is a very exciting opportunity for you to learn more about your health, toxicity in the world and what you can do about it, complementary, from your own home! I am so proud to be partnering with The Detox Summit to bring you some of the world’s most cutting edge speakers!


 Environmental toxins can be found in what you eat, drink, breathe, feel and think. You may not be aware of toxins, but if you want to be healthy, being educated on the latest in toxins is a must! Chronic conditions, like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity, may be associated with environmental toxins in your body.

The pearls of wisdom from expert speakers at The Detox Summit are essential to your health. Join us online for free from August 4-11.

This Detox Summit will provide you with the information you need to:

  • Learn about environmental toxins in food, air and water
  • Understand internally-generated toxins, like thoughts, emotions and behaviors
  • Recognize toxins of all types and eliminate them
  • Focus on breakthrough solutions to gain more energy and vitality

Navigate your way through today’s toxic terrain when you register for the free, online Detox Summit today:  https://dm177.isrefer.com/go/detoxreg/drvanda/

“Detox” is a multi-faceted term that means many things to people, from drug and alcohol detoxification to nutritional detoxification, or cleanses using food, smoothies and juices. Deanna Minich, PhD, has selected 30 experts in various areas of medicine, nutrition and personal growth to offer a well-rounded, credible approach to the issues of environmental toxins and holistic health.


Here are a few of the incredible presenters: 

Jeffrey Bland, PhD, Father of Functional Medicine

The Science of Nutritional Detoxification

Mark Hyman, MD, Functional Medicine Expert

Toxins and Chronic Disease: Why Detox is a Necessity for Good Health

Jeffrey Smith, Leading Spokesperson on GMOs

Genetically Modified Foods as Toxins in Everyday Eating

David Wolfe, Superfoods Guru

Foods to Enhance Vitality and Detox

Rainbeau Mars, Fitness Model and Actress

A Full Spectrum, Superstar Approach to Everyday Detox

With 30 presenters sharing their wealth of knowledge, this invaluable (and FREE) resource is intended for people everywhere!

Better yet, if you register today you’ll have access to the following FREE eBooks as soon as you register!

  • Food & Spirit Nourish Your Whole Self™ Report, by Deanna Minich, PhD
  • Detox Your Medicine Cabinet: 26 Herbs and Supplements that Treat Common Symptoms, by Aviva Romm, MD

  • Top 7 Therapeutic Foods, by Kelly Brogan, MD

  • 10 Tips for Helping Your Loved One with Autism, by Martha Herbert, MD, PhD

  • Benefits of Vitamin D, by Soram Khalsa, MD

Come listen to The Detox Summit ONLINE for FREE from August 4 – 11, and learn to survive your toxic world! https://dm177.isrefer.com/go/detoxreg/drvanda/

I’ll see you at the Summit!

Dr. Vanda

Different Types of Doctors – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

I had a young girl, age 13, in as a patient last week. I couldn’t believe how much she reminded me of myself at that age. Her symptoms and problems were not nearly severe or life threatening, but none the less, here was a beautiful girl, just on the edge of coming into her own, her whole life in front of her, endless possibilities and she was in debilitating pain. Just not fair.

As I was working with her, I started to have some flashbacks as to what I had experienced in my life. I could vividly see the doctors I visited, the pale yellow paint on the hospital walls with horrible putrid green curtains that separated the beds, the amazingly kind nurses, the people who I would still like to go back in time and slap for being so cruel to a child, the smells of operating rooms and antiseptic. The fear of rejection I felt going into see another doctor, to tell them my health story and to hope that maybe this time they will believe and help me.

Anyone suffering with a chronic health problem knows exactly what I am saying. There is this absolute fear of seeing a new doctor, yet also a glimmer of hope. Maybe this person has studied the right things, maybe they have interpreted the book knowledge correctly, maybe this doctor remembers something they learned in continuing education that may help me, maybe this doctor has seen someone else with my problem, maybe this doctor can cure me. All these hopes resting on someone’s ability to figure out why you are in so much pain and to do the right thing to free you from the pains shackles.

I have experienced many different types of doctors:

The “I can diagnose you in 30 seconds” doctor:
Ever have this happen? You sit down in the chair across from the doctor’s desk and the doc asks why you have come to see them? You take a deep breathe, think here goes nothing, and start to answer, “Well Doctor, I have come to see you today because I have (insert symptom – ie) pain in my legs, foot pain, headaches, fatigue). The pain is sha…..” and that’s when you get cut off. The doctor immediately interrupts you, finishes your sentences or tells you “I know what your problem is, here take this pill, potion or lotion and come back to see me in 10 days.” You try and explain that you have already tried 15 types of medication, been through every exam, had every test, but they have already made their mind up and need to move onto the next patient because they have a quota of time to spend with you and your 4-7 minutes are up.

The “I don’t believe you” Doctor:
I once had this experience. I was eleven years old and had to use my crutches to hobble into the exam room where I waited with anticipation sitting on the hard metal examination table for the doctor to come into the room. I was wearing shorts so the doctor could examine my knees and feet without causing him a problem and so I didn’t have to wear that gross paper gown. My mother was so supportive and encouraging to me. She also believed that I was the patient and I should talk to the doctor myself and explain my problems. SO there I was as an eleven year old, telling this doctor that at times my feet would turn BRIGHT red. Like fire engine paint red and that they hurt, all the time. He just looked at my knees and said “Your knee muscles are weak, put some coins in a sock and do leg lifts.” And then, he just looked at my feet, not even the soles but just glanced down at my feet dangling there and says “you’re lying about your feet, they can’t turn bright red, that is impossible.” My answer was “ummm but doctor, they really do turn red, hot to the touch and so painful I can barely stand on them.” I looked at my Mom for support, and she was nodding and backing up my story with “yes, I myself have never seen anything like it, but they really do turn red and hot.” He just looked at me and said my problem was that my thighs were too fat and I didn’t have enough muscle mass. At this point, I gathered my crutches up, hopped down from the bench, looked at my mom and said “well we are obviously not going to get any help here….let’s go Mom.” Good thing she raised me to be independent!

Still to this day, in all my years of practice, I have never looked at a patient and said, “you’re lying.” What an absolute breach of trust and confidence. Pain is a subjective complaint, what may barely bother one person, could put another person in absolute tears and agony. The function of the doctor is to offer hope, not to call you a liar. Just because the doctor never has seen anything like it and didn’t understand what could possibly be the cause, was no reason for him to belittle me and make me feel small and stupid. It should be an empowering experience when you seek help. If they don’t know the answer, they should seek to find out or refer you to someone else. Sometimes, I also think that there are no “answers”, just trial and error. But never, never, ever should a doctor not even examine you and just assume that you are making things up.

The “Supportive, Caring” Doctor:
When you find one of these doctors, hold on to them and spread the word. It is very refreshing to find a doctor who you can communicate with, understands your situation and who will listen. They understand your strengths and weaknesses, know when to push you towards such things as diet changes, weight loss or different treatments but also know when to just mention things and let things settle. I am not saying they need to be your best friend, but they should be a source of information and guidance. They want to work with you and steer you on the right course to health. After all, “doctor” really means teacher. They will refer you to other healthcare professionals if they don’t know the answer, they will work with alternate treatments, they believe in the innate healing power of the body and they believe in you.

Today I am in private practice seeing many people who are frustrated and fed up with the first two types of sick care givers. I am here to let you know that there really are doctors out there who care for you and what you are going through. We want to do more for our patients and strive to be a source of support and health information. We all got into our profession because we want to help people. Sometimes we selected our profession, other times our profession selected us, but our main goal is the same. A happy and healthy community full of vibrant people. Just remember that you are a health care consumer and if your doctor is selling something you don’t need, whether it is a negative attitude or unwanted stress. Go shopping and find yourself a new doctor!

Are You Healthy? Or Just “Not Sick”?

If a person is in pain and they take a pill, the pain will usually “go away”.  But where is this place that the pain disappeared to? A magical pain land?   The pain has actually not gone anywhere, it’s just covered it up.  This is like cleaning your house by sweeping all of the dirt under the rug.  So does this make you more “healthy” just because you cannot “feel” the pain?

pills1 red_health_apple








Most people in today’s society do not even consider their health until they have pain or bad symptoms show up.  If they feel good, they think they are healthy and if they feel bad, then they are sick.  Logical right?  Wrong.  Good or bad symptoms are only a message from our body that there is something going on and some type of change is needed.

Symptoms are our body’s way of adapting to its internal and external environment.  For example, what if you eat some spoiled food and get food poisoning.  When you experience extreme vomiting and diarrhea, are you sick or healthy?   Most would say that you are sick, but in actual fact, it is a good and strong natural response to eject the toxins out of your body as quickly as possible.  You may feel horrible, but your body is healthy because of its natural protective reaction.

What do you do when you are experiencing these types of reactions, do you let your body do what is best for it or do you take something to suppress the symptoms?

If your smoke detectors alarm went off, would you just take the batteries out and go back to sitting on your couch or would you investigate as to what actually set it off in the first place?

We therefore cannot judge our true health by how we are feeling, but rather by how well our body is functioning and responding to lifestyle stress.  As the World Health Organization states, health “is optimal physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmary.”

If you replace the "I" in illness, with "We" you have wellness.  You don't have to do this alone.

If you replace the “I” in illness, with “We” you have wellness. You don’t have to do this alone.

How well are you functioning?  Real health includes all types of factors, such as abundant nutrition, exercise, proper sleep, a way to manage and minimize stress and toxins, a well functioning and responding nervous system and a positive mental attitude.  Health care is not screenings for cancer, diabetes or high blood pressure.   Though these tests are important, waiting to find something is sick care, taking responsibility the choices you make is true health and wellness care.

So take a more pro-active approach to your own health care.  Eat right, move more, get adjusted and think positive thoughts to help elevate your own health.

What steps are you taking to bring your health quotient up?  Leave a comment below to share your journey!

Cheers to your health!

Dr. Vanda.

Eat my Anti-What?

Antioxidants have been a “buzz” word for some time now. Everywhere you go, people are touting the benefits of eating foods high in antioxidants. Yet, there seems to be a bit of confusion about what you should eat and why you should eat it. I once had a patient ask, “you need oxygen to live, why would I want to eat something that is anti-oxygen?”

Antioxidants are nutrients and enzymes in our food that can slow or prevent the damaging effect of free radicles in our body. Free radicals appear in our body as the by-product of our cells using oxygen for essential processes. These free radicals are an unstable molecule in your body so it attacks other cells, proteins or DNA to try and gain an electron to become stable. This is the same process which gives you rust on your car, turns a peeled apple brown or turns oil rancid.

It is impossible to avoid free radicals. Free radicals arise from inside and outside of our body. Natural processes such as aging, breathing, normal metabolism and inflammation in the body can make free radicals. Outside factors such as sunlight, pollution, aggressive exercise, radiation, x-rays, smoking and alcohol cause the body to have free radicals in it.

We cannot avoid free radicals but we can do our best to counteract their effects. Antioxidants are so effective in the body because they can donate an electron to the free radical without damaging itself, thereby helping to repair damage and assisting in preventing the aging process. Antioxidants assist in fighting infection and help lower the risk of cancer formation. Antioxidants also help play a role in preventing other chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, cataracts and arthritis.

So what are the top antioxidants?

Vitamins A,C, and E Minerals such as Copper, Selenium, Manganese and Zinc.  Phytochemical’s such as anthocyanins, lycopene and flavonoids are all so beneficial to a persons health and vitality.

Antioxidants are responsible for the bright and vibrant colours in fruits and vegetables, the flavour in coffee, tea and extra-virgin olive oil and the oh so beautiful bitter taste in dark chocolate. Here’s a chart breaking down the highest anti-oxidative foods according to USDA.

Rank Food item Serving size Total antioxidant capacity
per serving size
1 Small Red Bean (dried) Half cup 13,727
2 Wild blueberry 1 cup 13,427
3 Red kidney bean (dried) Half cup 13,259
4 Pinto bean Half cup 11,864
5 Blueberry (cultivated) 1 cup 9,019
6 Cranberry 1 cup (whole) 8,983
7 Artichoke (cooked) 1 cup (hearts) 7,904
8 Blackberry 1 cup 7,701
9 Prune Half cup 7,291
10 Raspberry 1 cup 6,058
11 Strawberry 1 cup 5,938
12 Red Delicious apple 1 whole 5,900
13 Granny Smith apple 1 whole 5,381
14 Pecan 1 ounce 5,095
15 Sweet cherry 1 cup 4,873
16 Black plum 1 whole 4,844
17 Russet potato (cooked) 1 whole 4,649
18 Black bean (dried) Half cup 4,181
19 Plum 1 whole 4,118
20 Gala apple 1 whole 3,903

In summary, eat foods that vary in all types of colours, but use some common sense. Fresh, healthy, non-processed food is the way to go. You can’t get your anti-oxidants out of a soda pop bottle!  In the end, your mother was right, just eat your fruits and veggies!!

Our Deepest Fear…

This is my absolute favorite quote and I wanted to share it with you.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.’ We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~ Marianne Williamson


As you go through life, having more drama and trauma or as I like to call it “life experience”, you will learn a lot.  You will learn that you can take a lot of pain and heartache.  You will learn that you can be strong and tough yet also vulnerable and forgiving.  You will experience joy and the thrill of life yet also despair and the grief of death.  So many emotions and so many layers of complex experiences make your life, yours.  Yet the one thing that you will have learned through all these experiences, in all challenges, and in all situations, you truly are powerful beyond measure!

There is a light that radiates from within when you realize that you are “brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous”!  You are also intelligent, loving, caring and sexy as hell.  Who are you to deny what an amazing person you are?

It is your duty to use this given life to its fullest capacity.  To discover everything you want to do and become.  Do not shrink and become small to let others think that they have power over you!  You are just as worthy as they are.  Step into your own radiance and learn to shine, cause this world needs more light!

Step, Jump or Dance into your LIGHT!!

Love and Light,



I Am The Master Of My Fate!

I recently found a new class here in Dubai that I am in love with.  It’s called “INTENSATI” – a combination of the words “Intensity” and “sati” which means mindfulness.   Founded by Patricia Monreno in 2005, it has been sweeping the globe with its message of acceptance of self without judgment and self- love.

I was invited to the class by a friend who is always “in the know”, she is the definition of the cool kid. Due to her amazing recommendations previously, I didn’t hesitate to show up to what is described as a “high energy cardio workout combining martial arts, kick boxing, aerobics and yoga all done to pumping music while reciting positive affirmations”. How could I turn that down? I thought that perhaps this was a class specifically designed for me.

Yvette is the most petite yet powerful instructor I have had to date.  Her passion is infectious and I had one heck of an amazing time.   Sixty minutes of screaming positive affirmations out, raising our consciousness and sweating it out to amazing dance music had me hooked.  Okay I admit it, I mouthed most of the affirmations for the last 15 minutes, because it has been a while since I’ve done straight out cardio, but I still felt the benefit.  My body felt stronger, my skin refreshed but most of all, my mind felt clearer and focused.  At the end of the hour, Yvette guided us through a short meditation and I had more energy then I have had in ages.

I highly recommend checking out an intenSATI class if there is one near you.  If not, just turn on some rocking music, dance around your living room, and repeat after me – “I AM THE MASTER OF MY FATE”.

This was the affirmation that we did during our class,

I am the master of my fate

I lift myself up to a higher state

With the power of my mind

I seek & I shall find

I am in control of my full potential 

I will thrive, Not just survive

I am focused, I am grateful, I feel great!


Love to you all,


Missing Information about the Drugs You Take

I am a very strong believer in using pharmeceutcial drugs only when absolutely necessary.  I see the amazing innate healing power of the body express itself in patients everyday in my practice, without drugs or surgery.  Yet, too many people are taking too many drugs, hoping for some type of quality of life improvement.  How is someone supposed to make a life-affecting choice about what to put in their body without full disclosure of all information available?

Unfortunately, the massive drug corporations have an unyielding power to control the research that is reported about their products.  The drug companies usually just let you see the favourable results toward their drug.  By seeing only the positive research and none of the neutral or negative results from drug trials, your doctor, your pharamcist and you are unable to make a fully educated decision about the chemicals you are putting in your body.

Ben Goldacre, in this TedMed talk, explains how the pharmaceutical companies are controlling the information.  The information that you as the consumer need to make an informed choice.

“We cannot know the true effects of the medicines that we prescribe, if we do not have access to all of the information.” – Ben Goldacre.

As Dr. Goldacre suggests at the end of the video, we need an action plan.  We need all trials for humans including older trials, for all drugs in current use to be published and we need to tell EVERYONE about this problem.  For more information please send a request to info@alltrials.org.

Yours in health,

Dr. Vanda

The Toxic Baby

We are surrounded by chemicals and the list of harmful exposure just seems to be growing daily.  Bisphenol A was banned in Canada in 2010, followed by the European Union in 2011.  The United States is currently debating its usage in plasticproducts such as baby bottles, but to date, you can still buy products with Bisphenol A in stores in America.

We all want the best for our future generations.  Here is a great video that explores some of the exposures and risks to todays generation.

Filmmaker Penelope Jagessar Chaffer was curious about the chemicals she was exposed to while pregnant: Could they affect her unborn child? So she asked scientist Tyrone Hayes to brief her on one he studied closely: atrazine, a herbicide used on corn. (Hayes, an expert on amphibians, is a critic of atrazine, which displays a disturbing effect on frog development.) Onstage together at TEDWomen, Hayes and Chaffer tell their story.

Mmmmmm Watermelon!

I love watermelon! This may not come as a surprise to my friends who know me well, or those who got to the fruit salad buffet late after I had picked all the delicious watermelon pieces out – every day.  One of my earliest memories of childhood is sitting outside in the warm sun and having a watermelon-eating contest with my brother. I’m pretty sure I won.

With summer approaching and with the day’s getting longer and hotter, I thought I would share some amazing facts about watermelon, why it’s so good for you and why you should cut one open today!!

Citrullus Lanatus otherwise known as watermelon is believed to have originated in the Kalahari Desert of Africa.  Egyptian hieroglyphics on the walls of depicted the first watermelon harvest nearly 5000 years ago.  Watermelons were often set in the burial tombs for nourishment in the afterlife.  From Egypt, watermelon spread throughout the Mediterranean Sea, by merchant ships.  Eventually watermelon’s made their way to China in the 10th century, which today remains the world’s number one producer of watermelon.

Watermelon is recommended to help handle the heat of summer.  It helps to cool you off and hydrate you.  The fruit is low in calories and contains many nutritious benefits such as lycopene.  Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant (also found in tomatoes), which has been shown to help prevent cardiovascular disease and some forms of cancer.

Watermelon also contains high amounts of Vitamin C, Vitamin A and Vitamin B6.  Vitamin C can give the immune system a boost against viruses and bacteria invading the body.  It also helps prevent premature aging by protecting you from free radicals.  Vitamin A is important for healthy eye function and also helps lymphocytes in the body, which are infection-fighting white blood cells.  Vitamin B6 helps the body produce antibodies to help the immune system fight diseases.  Vitamin B6 also helps maintain normal nerve function and helps to form new red blood cells.

Watermelon has a high potassium content as well.  Due to this fact, watermelon will originally quench your thirst, but over time the potassium will act as a diuretic, to help flush any toxins out of your body.  Combined with the beta-carotene in the watermelon, this will give a cooling anti-inflammatory effect to help flush contaminants through the urinary tract.

I have included some recipes to use with your watermelon this summer!  Happy eating!!

Watermelon Pina Colada


2 cups watermelon puree

1/2 cup chunked pineapple

1/2 cup vanilla yogurt

3 cups ice

2 tablespoons cream of coconut


Mix all ingredients together in a blender.

Blend until desired consistency and serve. For an adult version add rum!


Makes 4 to 5 cocktails.

Mediterranean Watermelon Salad



6 cups torn mixed salad greens

3 cups cubed seeded watermelon

1/2 cup sliced onion

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese

1 dash cracked black pepper


In large bowl, mix all ingredients except oil and pepper. Just before serving, toss salad mixture with oil. Garnish with pepper.