Death is a part of life, but too often people are afraid to talk about their fears about dying, and their priorities for care at the end of life. Many people find themselves in challenging situations when they are faced with a dying relative or friend, not sure what steps to take to honor the dying person’s wishes.
Are you prepared? Do you have a will? An advanced health care directive? If not, you are not alone.
** Listen now to About Health (9/11/23) ** https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=407174
Let’s talk about death and about communicating with the people we love while we can.
Eileen Spillane is the founder of Befriending Death, a platform that offers the signature course “Let’s Chat About Death” as well as 1:1 coaching, a book club, and community gatherings. Her motivation to create these courses came from many years as a Critical Care Nurse witnessing unnecessary suffering. Her hope is to normalize conversations around death with a supportive, friendly community, so life and death decisions can be approached long before one is hospitalized. In addition to working as a Registered Nurse for the last thirty three years, Eileen is a meditation and dharma teacher, and works as an active travel guide for international hiking and biking trips. She is a former Zen Hospice Project volunteer and a trained end of life doula.
Eileen offers a free book club. In October, she will have two authors joining for a discussion:
Joanne Cacciatore, author of Bearing the Unbearable: Love, Loss and the Heartbreaking Path of Grief on 10/10 9:30 AM PST
Sally Tisdale, author of A Guide For Future Corpses: A Practical Perspective on Death And Dying 10/12 5 PM PST
To learn more about her work and offerings go to https://www.befriendingdeath.com/
Listen now to About Health–8/28/23
There has been a lot of talk about the Vagus Nerve these days, so I decided to do a show to learn more about how it functions, and how it can help us during times of stress or illness. The vagus nerve is one of the longest and most important of 12 cranial nerves in our bodies, and it connects our brain to our gut, and affects our mood, digestion, heart rate, immune response, and much more.
Join me and my guest Amelia Barili to learn about the Vagus Nerve and ways it can help us respond instead of react and calm ourselves in these challenging times.
AMELIA BARILI PhD, travelled the world studying ancient traditions on how to develop good health from the inside out. She received her diploma in Yoga Therapy and Philosophy, in 1972, at Kaivalyadhama Yoga Institute, India. Having also studied the Medical Qigong system with old Chinese masters, Amelia is a pioneer at integrating both wisdom traditions. She has brought these ancient contemplative practices into the academic environment and teaches meditative techniques as tools to overcome stress and foster deep learning. She is an award-winning faculty at UC Berkeley and the Osher LifeLong Learning Institute, where she teaches youth and older adults a systematic embodied mind approach for personal and community transformation. Since March 2020 she has been offering, and continues to offer, free Saturday online classes. The classes integrate Yoga, Qigong, and Neuroscience to teach participants how to work with their nervous system to maintain good health, resilience, and inner strength. She just finished teaching a nine weeks course with Dr. Stephen Porges, at the Polyvagal Institute, on “Embodying Safety: Integrating Yoga, Qigong and Polyvagal Theory.” For more information about Dr. Barili’s work and to join her Saturday classes visit ameliabarili.com and her YouTube channel thenewparadigms.
LISTEN NOW https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=405692
About Health, 8/14/23 on KPFA radio—94.1FM
One of the many health impacts the climate crisis has had in recent years is an increase is vector-borne diseases, including diseases caused by ticks, such as Lyme and Babesiosis. Lyme has been a challenge regarding diagnosis and treatment for a long time, leaving many patients with inadequate testing, high medical bills, and doctors who dismiss the varied, debilitating, and inconsistent symptoms of Lyme.
A young women, Olivia Goodreau, has made it her mission to raise awareness, support research efforts, and create a user-friendly app to identify tick populations, which are seen worldwide. She has suffered from the chronic effects of tick-borne illness on a daily basis. After seeing over 50 doctors to find out what was wrong with her, she met Dr. Richard Horowitz, who gave her the attention and care she had been hoping and praying for. Olivia Goodreau and Dr Horowitz will join me to discuss Lyme disease, including some of the new efforts and treatments on the horizon.
Olivia Goodreau’s recently published memoir is, “But She Looks Fine – From Illness to Advocacy”. This is the story of how she turned the physical challenges and emotional hardships she has faced since she was a little girl into an engaged life of advocacy for others. She is the founder (at age 12) of LivLyme Foundation, a nonprofit that provides financial assistance to children and their families struggling with Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. LivLyme also supports the work of researchers and scientists who are dedicated to finding effective treatments and cures for tick-borne diseases. Olivia is also the inventor of the free global TickTracker App, the Tickmojis App, and her latest free app, LongHaulTracker.
Olivia has testified twice in front of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Tick-Borne Disease Working Group, and both the House and Senate in Maryland. She helped pass the Kay Hagan Tick Act at the request of Senator Susan Collins of Maine, which appropriated $150 million dollars for tick-borne diseases. Olivia lobbied with the Center for Lyme Action and spoke at their inaugural “fly in” helping to increase the tick-borne diseases congressional budget by $91 million.
So many young people are faced with life-changing hardships from illness and disease. What Olivia discovers through her journey with chronic Lyme, is that inside of every predicament is also a possibility. Olivia will be attending UCLA in the fall of 2023, majoring in political science with a double minor in public health and international business.
Dr. Richard Horowitz is a board-certified internist and medical director of the Hudson Valley Healing Arts Center, an integrative medical center specializing in the treatment of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. He has treated over 13,000 Lyme and TBD patients in the last 30 years and is one of the founding members and past president elect of The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS). Dr Horowitz has published multiple peer-reviewed articles on effective diagnostic and treatment options for Lyme and co-infections and served as a member of the Health and Human Services (HHS) Tick-borne Disease Working Group in 2017-2018. He was also co-chair of the HHS Tick-borne Co-infection subcommittee which gave recommendations to Congress on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of tick-borne illness, and he was recently elected to the NYS Department of Health Tick-borne Disease Working Group. For dedicating his life to helping those stricken with this devastating illness, he has been awarded the Humanitarian of the Year award by the Turn the Corner Foundation and awards from Project Lyme.
Dr Horowitz also published the first peer reviewed article in the world literature on the role of glutathione deficiency in COVID-19, which has now been cited over 200 times. He is the author of two best-selling books on Lyme disease, Why Can’t I Get Better? and How Can I Get Better? He also recently released his first science fiction/climate change novel, Starseed R/evolution, The Awakening, which contains innovative scientific solutions for our climate crisis.
Listen now *https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=404968*
KPFA Radio, 94.1FM, 7/31/23
Joining me was author Elizabeth Rosner, discussing her book, Survivor Café: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory, where she looks at how descendants of atrocities cope with inherited trauma.
As the child of parents who survived the Holocaust, Elizabeth explores the collective memory of the murder of 6 million Jews, the genocide in Rwanda, and the bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. She stresses the vital importance of telling stories as a part of the medicine needed to understand and heal from these historic events, as well as from the racism, terrorism, and anti-Semitic traumas that people are experiencing in current time.
Elizabeth Rosner is an author, teacher, and lecturer whose work focuses on the redemptive power of storytelling and deep listening. Her books have been translated into ten languages and have received several literary prizes in the US and abroad. Her most recent book of creative nonfiction, Survivor Café: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory, explores the intergenerational aftermath of atrocities while offering hard-won hope for individual as well as collective resilience. Raised in upstate New York as the daughter of two Holocaust survivors, Elizabeth’s writing interweaves personal reflection with scholarly research, revealing the profoundly resonant impacts of the past upon the present. She leads writing workshops locally in Berkeley as well as internationally; her teaching carries forward a message of perseverance and tenacious optimism.
More about all of her work can be found on her website: www.elizabethrosner.com.
Pain is an unpleasant signal and complex experience when something hurts. It’s an important message to let us know something is wrong, and to help us to take action to prevent further harm. Pain will often go away on its own, but it can also persist and become chronic pain, which is one of the most common reasons people seek out medical care.
My guest, Dr. Rachel Zoffness, will help us understand the three important domains of chronic pain: biology, psychology, and social factors. Successful treatment often requires addressing these three prongs of pain.
Listen now to About Health (7/10/23) on 94.1FM—KPFA.ORG
Dr. Rachel Zoffness is a leading global pain expert, international speaker, author, and thought-leader in medicine, revolutionizing the way we understand and treat pain. She is a pain psychologist, Assistant Clinical Professor at UCSF, and lectures at Stanford. Dr. Zoffness is the author of The Pain Management Workbook and The Chronic Pain and Illness Workbook for Teens, the first pain workbook for kids. A passionate pain educator, she is a regular guest on popular health podcasts, and her episodes have over 6 million downloads. Dr. Zoffness was trained at Brown University, Columbia, UC San Diego, NYU, and Mt. Sinai Hospital. You can learn more at https://www.zoffness.com