All Posts By

Dr. Aliya

Pregnancy

M Y S T O R Y

{My speech from the 2018 Moms TO Wine Fest)

Hi Everyone. My name is Dr Aliya Visram and I am a chiropractor and acupuncturist.

I want begin by telling you a STORY.  A story of a mother who had it all. A wonderful husband, two beautiful children – a newborn and a spunky toddler, a supportive family, tons of friends,  a successful career helping others, and what seemed like the most positive outlook on life.


But what people didn’t see was that this woman, who appeared to have her shit together, killing it in life,  seemingly happy and in bliss, was on the inside, crumbling.  She was barely hanging on, hoping that someone, somewhere could hear her own thoughts and save her from her feelings of despair.

You see, she felt like there was no way she could tell a soul about what she was thinking or feeling.  In her mind, her job was to help and support others, be a role model, give hope and sprinkle positivity to everyone she met. So she kept trying to live her “instagram-worthy” life…but behind closed doors she cried herself to sleep, fearful of the thoughts she kept having, feeling fragmented and empty.  She couldn’t bring herself to get out of bed each morning, let alone nurse her baby and care for her toddler.


This woman was me.    

You see, my “realstagram” life was an entirely different story.  Realstagram was that my husband was suffering from a serious concussion leaving him bedridden and completely estranged from mine and our children’s lives.  Our marriage was hanging by a thread. During this time, our son was born leaving me to care for a newborn and a toddler completely alone. Four months before my son was born, my father who was my best friend had died, leaving my family in utter shock.  To add insult to injury, during this time, I was diagnosed with pneumonia,  which left my immune system completely depleted.

I woke up each day feeling more and more isolated.

I don’t know whether it was the exhaustion, grief, postpartum depression, or a combination of those things.  And in a lot of ways, I don’t think a label was necessary.  I was struggling. My awareness of myself and my needs dropped away and I was falling deeper and deeper into darkness

On January 18 2017, I hit bottom.  I got into my car at 2 am with my car keys in hand.  Willing myself to put the key in the ignition and drive my car as far as I could until I found a bridge.  The rest of my plan was a foggy memory. It must have been divine guidance that woke my husband up, urging him outside in minus 30 degree weather pulling me from behind the wheel before I could leave the driveway. 

This was and is the lowest point of my entire life.


This is a story I’ve held close and haven’t shared publicly. Until today. This is my story back from being energetically bankrupt.  And it’s become a story that gives me strength instead of feeling shame or judgement. I wanted to share it with you not to depress you but rather to give you hope and to empower you.   

During that time, under the weight of all of that distress, both my nervous system and immune system were fried.  I was constantly on edge, rageful and irritable. I started to avoid social situations and isolated myself from my friends and family. 

The medical system had offered me some options to help me cope and feel better. But I felt that there was more out there that I could explore.  I thankfully found a counsellor that I deeply connected with and she introduced me to the concept of “self care”.   Of course,  I had heard of “self care” before….you know, tips like getting a massage, or going to the spa or doing yoga.


But true  “self care” was foreign to me.  And for the first time I was able to truly understand what it meant to care for myself.  At the most basic level, self care meant the ability to get myself fed, dressed and washed, and to generally function in the world. Self care didn’t have to cost money and you didn’t have to wear fancy yoga leggings to do it.  It was the path I took to nourish myself, rebuild my depleted energy stores so that I could weather and heal from the storm of stress. It  didn’t miraculously remove the pain but it gave me a way to navigate the journey through it.

Learning self care was like building my own LIFEBOAT, plank by plank. Sure I would still be rocked by waves of stress and pain, but in my lifeboat I felt secure, safe and stable.


We joke that in early motherhood, taking a shower every day, eating a nourishing meal or going to the bathroom by oneself are luxuries.  But the act of showering and eating is basic human self preservation. Why do we make them optional during those early days when they are so essential? They are not selfish things or self-indulgences, they are ways to become your healthiest, happiest  best self.

During my darkest times, my self care was non-existent.  I was not taking care of myself, running on fumes. And if I was operating on empty – who was filling up my kids?  Think of self care as the oxygen masks on a plane in the case of an emergency. For the safety of all those in your care, you must ensure your mask is on and fitted first before you can attend to any of those in your care.  

As I started my journey back to myself, reclaiming my health and well being, I started to realize I wasn’t alone in feeling deprived of my self-love and self-compassion.  

The lack of self care that was happening amongst my friends and patients was rampant.   In fact, less than 15% of mothers state that they eat a nourishing meal and/or have a decent night sleep (more than 6 hours) on a regular basis.  This means that more than 85% of us are deprived, depleted, fatigued and not operating as the best versions of ourselves.

This is called SuperWoman Syndrome and it’s an epidemic. 

From Moms to MomBosses to Household Managers – women have 20 different roles in life and are empowered to do whatever we want. 

However, at the same time, women are stressed. More stressed than any other generation of women before us and this stress can manifest itself as anxiety, depression, thyroid disorders, pain and other conditions.  As a generation of women we are suffering from Super Woman Syndrome and we don’t have the self care tools to navigate through it.

 It’s about meeting yourself where you are and thinking about small things you can do to take care of yourself better. Those small steps and micro moments can be surprisingly transformative.

Those small steps that I took in taking care of myself helped cultivate a shift in my well-being and in my thinking.  Over the years, my passion for self care grew and so did the desire to share and empower others with tools and strategies to reclaim their own health and well-being.  

Self care will mean different things to different people at different times in their life. 

But there are a few things that I started with that may help some of you – I call them my Self Care Basics:

1. Eliminate negative self talk, shame and guilt.

A lot of us are brought up to believe that we need to be better or do better.  It’s time to accept yourself as exactly how you are right now. You might think loving yourself sounds self-indulgent.  It’s not narcissism or self centeredness – it’s being kind and compassionate to yourself.

2. Check in with your body

Checking in with your body and doing a quick body scan every day is super powerful tool.  It gives you very clear information, and takes less than 20 seconds. Here’s what you need to do:  Sit still with your feet on the ground. Eyes closed. Notice your body and pay attention to your breath.  How do you feel? How is your energy? What is your posture like? Are you clenching your jaw? Do you have any pain, discomfort or tension?  How do you feel emotionally? Don’t judge, just notice. If you feel pain, it’s a warning from your body. A lot of self care is about noticing things.  

3. Do Something for your Body

Take 2-3 hours per week to do something for your body.  This will help manage your stress levels. Do something that not only brings you passion, but something that lowers cortisol (the stress hormone).  If your exercise is high intensity – it still keeps cortisol elevated. Things like  yoga, or taichi, a walk in nature or even a gentle swim or float will help decrease cortisol. You can do this in small moments.

4. Nourish Yourself.  

Virginia Woolf said “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”  

Feeding yourself well is a very simple way to show yourself some love and care everyday.  If you do one thing from this talk, I hope it will be to cook yourself a meal that nourishes your body.  EAting well helps you stay mentally well. Sure, an anti-inflammatory diet, semi-plant based with lowered gluten and dairy and more healthy fats is ideal.  But eat what makes you feel good and what your body needs at that moment. Make mealtimes sacred by making it a no device, no screen time zone. 

5. Find your tribe. Your tribe isn’t exactly the same thing as your friends, although there may be some crossover.  Your tribe provides self care because it gives you a sense of belonging, which is an essential human need.  It can be a yoga class, or your pottery class or mama group – it’s the ability to feel open and honest and vulnerable amongst a group of people.  Make the effort to meet your tribe regularly and really listen. Be connected to your tribe and they will anchor you.
Let’s be clear, our stress isn’t going anywhere.  A 2015 study found that 9 out of 10 women reported feeling stressed, with half reporting that they were stressed every day.  When the going gets tough it’s common to drop self care from our list of to-do’s to make space and time for other things.  But self care needs to be at the top of your list and an active part of your life.  


It isn’t selfish – it’s not about me first, it’s about me as well.  


Engaging in self care gives you the chance to be your very best version of you, the opportunity to be the person you aspire to be for yourself and everyone around you and the strength to continue to kick down barriers and blow past challenges.   THank you so much for coming to hear my story.  I hope I’ve inspired you with some tools to take care of yourself – physically, emotionally, energetically. 

While much of this is common sense, it can be hard to implement. Go slowly and go gently.

And remember, we’re all in it together.   

Health + Wellness

WHAT’S IN MY PANTRY?

I started working with Holistic Nutritionist, Sabrina Virdee (@sabrinavirdee), a few months to help me get my nutrition and lifestyle back on track from what to eat and what not to eat.

One of her amazing tips to staying on a clean and healthy diet was to make sure my pantry was stocked with the essential staples. These are the foods that you can turn to over and over again and use in different ways and that will always be super nutritious and provide endless benefits to your body.

The following 8 things are essential to my pantry and help to keep me in check.

  1. Hemp hearts

Hemp hearts are a good fat (omega –3 and -6 and essential fatty acids) also high in plant based protein and fiber. Because they are packed with protein they are going to keep me fuller for longer and they are easy on the digestive system.

I usually add them to my morning smoothies or protein shakes or sprinkle on top of yogurt. Try sprinkling them on your salads as well!

  1. Chia Seeds

These seeds may be tiny but they totally pack a punch! Chia seeds are also packed with essential fats, protein, and fiber. Like hemp hearts they are also easy to add to foods and since their shelf life is extremely long I can buy them in bulk!

  1. Coconut Oil

Not only great for cooking, coconut oil can reach a high cooking temperature without denaturing. It can also be used in baking as a butter substitute. Its many other uses include using it as a mouthwash to reduce bad breath, a natural make up remover and relieves dry skin! It’s a multi-tasking miracle!

  1. Flax Seeds

I eat flax seeds on a daily basis and besides its multitude of health benefits, I love the effects they have on my skin, hair and nails!

I often grind my whole seeds which become easily broken down during digestion.   I often use a flax egg as an egg replacement in some recipes. Mix together 1 tbsp of ground flax and three tbsp of water and let sit to thicken for 5 minutes. This is one “flax egg” and can be used in baking!

  1. Almond Butter

I mean do we really need to talk about why this should stay stocked in your pantry. Besides being delicious…almond butter is an amazing protein and fat source and can be easily added to smoothies!

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar

Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar is amazing to have on hand! It’s one of my faves in dressings and sauces. I put a spoonful in my water to help aid in digestion, stabilizing blood sugar levels and balancing the body’s acidity.

  1. Maple Syrup

Being a Canadian, I hold this sweetener near and dear. I add it to dressings to balance acidity and to my breakfast items like oatmeal and yogurt. Look for dark maple syrup that is labeled Grade B – this type contains the most minerals and has a richer maple test.

Health + Wellness

3 Things I Wish I Had Known As a New Runner

This year I celebrated my 15 year running-versary! (The anniversary of when I started my journey into the world of running)

So basically, 15  years of countless early morning or late evening runs, heaps of races and a “handful” of injuries. Ok, maybe two handfuls.

Let’s be clear though, I haven’t run 15 years consecutively.  There have been periods of non-running along the way – after my daughter was born, when I was pregnant with my son and through some major injuries (plantar fasciitis being the more recent….ugh…)  And starting back on the journey after each of these events was so so hard.

As I look back over the the last 15 years, there are things I wouldn’t change at all and then there are things…well, let’s just say I could have done a bit better. I’ve made some bad decisions that resulted in overuse injuries, painful races and wasted effort!

I decided I would share with you some things I wish someone had told me when I first started running – let’s call them Lessons Learned (the hard way)!

Lesson  #1: It’s not just about “The Run”

Yes, running in itself is very satisfying and it costs almost nothing at all, however a strong cardiovascular system (lungs and heart) are only part of the equation.

Building core strength and muscular endurance helps prevent injuries and promotes an efficient running stride. Hip and core strengthening are crucial components to cross-training that help you overcome overuse injuries such as IT Band Pain (ouchy!) or Hamstring strains (double ouchy!) and Glute Weakness (poor weak glutes).

Lesson #2: Invest in a good pair of ‘kicks’! 

Non-supportive shoes or even over-supportive shoes (too much motion control) could lead to poor running biomechanics and possibly injury. It’s important to invest in a quality running shoe that helps support YOUR feet. Take the time to have a knowledgeable specialist (ahem, chiropractor!) look at your feet, your gait cycle and advise you as to which shoes will help support you while running. Having a great pair of runners can dramatically help your running and you’ll be able to become a more efficient runner.

Lesson #3: Success at running takes time…

A lot of time. Running comes with gradual training and consistency. Injuries happen. Learning to get back on the road the smart way is part of the game.

Dramatic increases in intensity/speed or mileage usually lead to injury. Remember to increase your speed OR your mileage gradually. Be patient. Take the time to achieve moderate increases over a longer period of time which will lead to sustained improvement in your runs.

Don’t get me wrong….running is awesome and with time it becomes second nature and a part of your life. Let’s just say it becomes slightly addictive . But for some, it can be a bit of a love/hate relationship and may come at a price (injuries, blisters, discomfort, etc).

It pays to learn how to run effectively and efficiently.

Take your time and in the meantime, just enjoy the ride…and the endorphins!

 

 

Pregnancy

MY TOP PREGNANCY MUST HAVE’S

Let’s face it, while being pregnant is amazing (ahem…), it’s also super overwhelming.   The advice, the do’s, the don’ts and let’s not forget about allllll the stuff.

Some you ABSOLUTELY need….and some you actually don’t. At all.

It’s a long 9 months, or 40 weeks or 3 trimesters and I’ve put together a list of pregnancy essentials that will help get you through, smooth sailing…kinda.

Here are my top pregnancy essentials:

  1. An EXERCISE BALL

I tell all of my patients to get one of these balls and keep it handy through pregnancy and beyond.

Sitting on the ball is amazing for posture and to help ease back and pelvic discomfort.   I also suggest a few key ball exercises to help keep your pelvis open and pain free. The ball is also a great tool to help get you through contractions at any stage. And trust me, you’ll definitely use it with your newborn. Endless middle of the night baby bouncing and it actually works!

Tip: Make sure you get a ball that is 65 cm or bigger and preferably latex free.  Find them at Wal-Mart, Winners, Homesense or any sporting goods store.

  1. BELLY OIL or LOTION

Let’s talk stretch marks.

A growing belly and tightening skin often damages the collagen fibers that give skin its supple elasticity resulting in those dreaded stretch marks. But even if you don’t get any stretch marks (lucky you!) – you may feel some amount of tightness, itchiness and occasional burning around your belly. Using a good quality belly butter certainly does help!

My favourite belly butter for both of my pregnancies was Joyous Health’s Belly Bump Butter. I spend a few quick moments after every shower or bath rubbing it into my belly. I also loved using Bio-oil post baby #2. It really helped reduce the signs of marks.

Tip: Find a lotion, butter or oil that is mildly fragrant or unscented. Your nose is a pretty sensitive thing when you are pregnant and some smells can be a bit overpowering.

 

  1. A GOOD QUALITY PILLOW

As both a chiropractor and two time mama– I can’t stress the importance of getting a good quality pillow for sleep during pregnancy. The earlier you start using one, the better. I treat a lot of mamas in my practice whose aches and pains can be prevented by using a good quality pillow in the right set up from the first trimester. Ideally, you want to position the pillow between your knees, lower legs and ankles. You also want a bit of support (think a wedge) under your growing belly. And don’t forget about your neck – it’s just as important!

Tip: You may need to try a few different variations on your pillow set up. Trial and error is key and don’t give up! You’ll find a good position with some practice!

 

  1. ALL OF THE SNACKS.

Ok so growing a human being inside of you is hard and makes you super hungry. But then you eat a bite and you’re full (thank you baby who has compressed your stomach). One hour later, you’re hungry…again. And so the cycle continues.

The most helpful thing for me was snacking. Think smaller meals, more frequently. Anything from an apple with PB to yogurt with granola to a hard boiled egg… I kept my snack game tight and it helped. It also helped me be less hangry. Because let’s face it there is nothing worse than a hangry pregnant woman.

Tip: Try incorporating some protein in each of your snacks. It will help keep you fuller for longer!

 

  1. A GOOD PAIR OF MATERNITY JEANS

Ok, so you’re retaining more water and your belly is starting to get a bit bigger and let’s be honest, the energy you spend getting yourself into your favourite pair of jeans is equivalent to doing a one hour spin class. Girl, it’s time to pack away your fave skinny jeans and spring for a pair of – dare I say – maternity jeans.

But don’t worry, maternity jeans have come a long, long way and there are so many flattering styles available now. Frumpy, boxy, shapeless stretchy “pants” are a thing of the past!

My favourite pair of maternity jeans are my Paige Denim Verdugo Distressed Ultra Skinny Maternity Jeans.

Tip: Check out Mom’s Buy and Sell Groups or ask friends who’ve been pregnant before – chances are someone has a great pair of J Brands they are willing to get rid off which helps ease the strain on your wallet.

  1. A GOOD READ

Let’s be real, in pregnancy there is A LOT of waiting. Waiting for doctors, waiting for ultrasounds, waiting for blood tests and ultimately, waiting for the baby. Take a chill pill and read a good book, or several of them. It helps take your mind off things and will keep you distracted while you wait.

I remember plowing through several goodies – basically the Stieg Larrson collection (sooo good!)

Tip: Audio books are an amazing way to listen to your favourite novels anywhere anytime!

Listen mama, the next 9 months is going to be filled some serious, unbelievable changes – some are amazing and exciting and others are well, not so amazing. Luckily, there are tons of great resources, products, services and advice that will help make your pregnancy as smooth as possible.

Feel free to add anything else mama…:)

 

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

What is Acupuncture? The FAQs

You’ve probably heard of acupuncture and may have even thought about receiving a treatment – but if you’ve had acupuncture before, you know it’s more than just getting poked with needles.

Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that strives to stimulate the balance of energy (or Qi, “chee”) within the body. When the body is healthy, Qi flows smoothly through the channels (or meridians) of the body. When the flow of Qi is unbalanced or obstructed the body may be susceptible to disease or illness.

I recently visited my friend and Instagram star Zehra Allibhai, of The Fitnest, who agreed to have her very first acupuncture treatment filmed to share with all of you! (she’s amazing –> follow her here).

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Zehra had a few areas of concern she wanted me to look at and treat – check out the video below.

Here are a few frequently asked questions I often get asked about acupuncture.

Q. Does acupuncture hurt?

Probably the most common question asked about acupuncture, ever. Many people associate needles to pain. Totally understandable! However, acupuncture needles are similar in thickness to a cat’s whisker, and are virtually painless when inserted. The occasional patient may report a pinch upon insertion, but the discomfort dissipates relatively quickly. Many patients report feeling a very unique sensation varying from tingling to heaviness to warmth and sometimes nothing at all.

Each patient’s experience is different. However, if you do experience discomfort, let your acupuncturist know and they will adjust the needles accordingly. Communication with your acupuncturist is important so that you can relax during treatment. I’m a bit sensitive to needles myself and so I have developed a gentle needling technique over the years


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Q. What can Acupuncture treat?

Because the goal of acupuncture is to promote and restore the balance of energy, the benefits of acupuncture can extend to a wide range of conditions from musculoskeletal conditions (TMJ, neck and back pain, knee, ankle, elbow, etc) to emotional disorders (anxiety, stress, depression) to digestive complaints (nausea, IBS, reflux). It can also be used to treat degenerative conditions such as chronic pain or arthritis and inflammatory conditions such as sinusitis. Labour preparation, induction and fertility acupuncture is also effective and more information can be found on the Toronto Yoga Mamas website.

According to the National Cancer Institute, several studies show that acupuncture can help boost immunity and speed up recovery following cancer treatments.

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Q. Will Acupuncture help get rid of my problem?

Acupuncturist treat the root of the problem and not just the symptoms. Relieving pain and supporting the body’s ability to heal itself are the goals of treatment. Pain is reduced because the needles promote the release of endorphins, as well as increase the movement of blood, relaxing tissues and optimizing the nervous system.

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Q. What should I expect when I see an Acupuncturist for the first time?

Typically the first acupuncture visit involves a comprehensive health history assessment. The questions may seem unrelated to the chief concern or complaint, but they are relevant to the entire body’s interactions which are the key to diagnosis and treatment. Sometimes, the practitioner may ask to examine your tongue or feel your pulse to help determine energy flow and body’s state of balance.

After the consultation and assessment, a treatment protocol is devised. As an Acupuncturist AND a Chiropractor, I often include manual techniques into my treatment plan to help thoroughly treat the condition. The treatment plan varies patient to patient.

 

Q. What will I feel like after treatment?

After treatment you should feel calm, relaxed and maybe a bit sleepy. Some people feel more energetic. The responses vary depending on the type of treatment and your current state of health. The effects are cumulative and each treatment builds on the last. a typical treatment plan may look like this: 1-2 timer a week for 6-8 treatments followed by monthly maintenance treatments for a period of time, however this varies from patient to patient.

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Q. How do I find a qualified Registered Acupuncturist (R.Ac)?

Finding a qualified Registered Acupuncturist in your area is easy. Check the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of Ontario to find someone in your area.

An acupuncturist practices significantly different than an “acupuncture provider”.

Acupuncture providers are usually manual therapy practitioners such as physiotherapists, massage therapists and chiropractors who use acupuncture as an adjunct to their treatment of musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions.

Acupuncturists use the fundamentals Traditional Chinese Medicine to help address the whole body and treat a host of conditions including MSK.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at hello@draliya.ca

 

Enjoy the video:

 

Health + Wellness

5 Must Have’s from The Bump to Baby Show

 

As a health conscious mama of two tiny humans, I’m always searching for the best natural, eco-friendly, toxic-free products that are on the market today.

But now, I don’t have to look very far!

The Bump to Baby Show is happening this Saturday October 21st in Toronto’s east end and will host more than 40 of the city’s local health-conscious vendors that are committed to inspiring families to live healthier!

From healing baby balms to all natural teething remedies, this show is one you don’t want to miss!

To help you get the most out of your time at the show – I’ve put together a list of my Top 5 Must-Get Products from the Bump to Baby Show.

  1. Substance Baby Nappy Ointment

This nappy ointment is a staple in my diaper bag! It’s such an amazing balm to help soothe baby’s skin and isn’t super greasy or super smelly. I also use it for my own dry hands! Plus, it’s made with calendula. Win-win!

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  1. Green Beaver Green Apple Toothpaste

This natural toothpaste is a hit at our house especially with my picky toddler. It has a mild apple flavour and is safe if swallowed. She loves it because it’s not “spicy” (read: minty) like other toothpastes.

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  1. Genuine Health’s Organic Gut Superfoods+

This product helps keep my gut happy!   With its 22 plant-based superfoods and its “prebiotics” – it helps me control bloating and alleviates my tummy trouble.

Because mama needs a happy belly!

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  1. Boiron’s Camilia Teething Homeopathic Medicine

In our house, Boiron’s Camilia drops have super duper magical powers! They help to calm a fussy crying teething baby within minutes! And bonus, they’re all natural!

Must. Buy. All. The. Camilia.

Boiron also makes a wide range of homeopathic medicines and remedies including Quietude (for sleep) and Coryzalia (for colds).

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  1. Boogalu Baby Teethers

Speaking of teething, my littlest William will not let go of this wooden and silicone teething rattle. The texture of the wood combined with the suppleness of the silicone is great for his sore little gums!

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If you’re not into shopping (um, what?!?….) the Bump to Baby Show will also have a ton of activities for families including music classes, yoga sessions, wellness workshops and talks and more!

 

The Bump to Baby Show runs Oct. 21 from 9:30 a.m. -3:30 p.m. at The Riverdale Hub, 1326 Gerrard St. E. Tickets are $5 per person in advance, which guarantees you a cotton tote bag filled with great swag, or $10 at the door. The show is free for kids and grandparents.

See you there!

xo Dr Aliya

Babies + Kids

3 Things Every Parent NEEDS to Know

Congratulations…you’re officially a Parent! That’s Parent with a capital “P”!

Because being a Parent is awesome…..but also being a Parent is hard as hell.

You welcomed this precious little baby into the world and oh man, it was cute as a button, smelled so dang good and was itty bitty teeny tiny! You thought to yourself, I got this!

And you do “have this!”

But also, more often than not, you don’t.   Parenting is tough shit.

I wish someone had taken me aside and told me some of the hard truths of my new role as a Parent.

Parenting is a journey and sure, you may have felt prepared at first, but chances are there will be something that throws you off your game and you’re left with a jaw dropped “WTF?!?”.

Yep. That’s being a Parent.

But here are three nuggets of advice I want NEED to share with you, my fellow Parent:

1. Lower Your Expectations

I’m serious.

Don’t expect a lot from yourself OR your partner for that matter.

That’s because most days taking a shower will be a huge accomplishment…and it is.

You’re in survival mode for the first few (read: several) months.  Also, all of things you expected your partner to do or the things they had done before are NOT fair game anymore.

But hey, as a bonus, if you don’t expect a lot and then stuff does get done it’s like Christmas morning!

 

2. You’re not the same person you were before kids

You will never be the same person you were before kids. Let that person go. Because the truth is, you just can’t be the same. You’ve got a tiny person that needs you for everything and you’re priorities will be different.  That’s the other thing, your relationship will not be the same either (more on that in another post!).

The problem starts when new Parents try their hardest to be their “before kids” selves. It’s not possible, friend.   And the more you try to be your BK (Before Kids) self – the harder life will be. Embrace your AK (After Kids) self for all that it is – compassionate, empathetic, nurturing, responsible, protective, and loving!

You are one hell of a person – and I promise you’ll love the new (Parental) you!

 

3. You will never be prepared. ever.

Your diaper bag could be the most organized, most well stocked baby bag on earth, there could be a Wal-Mart in that bag….chances are your baby will need the one thing you didn’t pack.

Yup.  That’s the world of these magical, unpredictable AF babies.

You’re going to forget things. You’re going to screw up. And you’re going to be “that Parent” at some point. We are ALL “that Parent” at one time or another.

I’ve yet to meet a Parent who’s got it all together, all the time. Even us “experts” are just making it up as we go along.

But you’re also going to learn a ton and you WILL figure it out.

It’s a steep learning curve and you learn new things every day for the rest of that baby’s life. It’s life long, it never ends and it’s the best ever!

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So listen, I’m not an expert in all things babies by any means. But the above three nuggets are things I’ve learned on my own the past 3.5 years and things I wish someone, anyone, had told me. So I’m sharing them with you.

But in the end, this shit doesn’t matter. What matters is the smile on your baby’s face when they first really see you, or the laughter or joy they get from just hanging out with you!

That’s the good stuff that makes the other stuff totally worth it!

Being a Parent is the most important job in the world and you just landed the gig!

Challenge accepted.

 xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness, Uncategorized

My FAVE *New, Trendy* Exercise Equipment

October?! WTF?!?

It’s Fall and that means back to school (love!), routines (love!) and getting back into working out (meh…).  After having my second baby, it has been a bit of a struggle to get back into a regular exercise program/routine.

There are a few things that have helped me get started!

First of all, I’ve started working out from home.  I can get my workouts in and out of the way without leaving the comfort of my home!  Plus, nap times are great times to get a good sweat on!

Second, I go hard.  If only have 20-30 minutes, I make each second count!  This means, high intensity interval training (HIIT).  Honestly, 20 minutes of HIIT elevates my heart rate, and gets my body working and muscles toned!

And lastly, I try to focus on exercises that have the most bang for my buck!   I’m always looking for new ways to give my body an amazing workout.  Sometimes this means using different pieces of equipment that help to add some level of intensity and variation to my workouts.

Check out my latest video below where I share my fave fitness essentials that will help keep you workouts effective and fun!

 

Health + Wellness

My Morning Skin Care Routine

Mornings are super crazy at our house!

Between getting the kids dressed and putting breakfast on the table, I barely have time to put myself together. To keep things simple, I rely on these 3 awesome beauty products to help my skin feel nourished and healthy (even on 4 hours of sleep!).

Here’s what I use:

  1. Pure and Simple Sensitive Skin Face Wash – daily
  2. Wildcraft Buff Face and Body Scrub – every other day
  3. Wildcraft Regenerating Cell Face Serum – daily

Check out my video below for all the details!

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

3 Acupressure Points for Stress Relief

Feeling stressed out?  Do you ever wish there were a simple way to ease your tension and stress?

Guys, there is!

It’s called Acupressure and it works wonders!   I’ve been teaching my patients acupressure points for years and it’s been a great tool to help ease a lot of common discomforts that you can do on your own.

Watch my video below to learn the 3 easy stress relieving acupressure points that you can start doing NOW!