Author Archives: Brian Nichols

Our House Sold

The 24th of May is the last day of my 21 years of practice in Halifax; the closing is the 1st of June.  My husband Brian and I have not as yet found a new place to be … so, I won’t be booking any appointments at the moment.


Boost Brain Health with M.I.N.D Diet

The MIND diet (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay) is a hybrid of the heavily studied heart- healthy Mediterranean and DASH diets, with modifications based on scientific literature and data specifically relevant to nutrition that benefits the brain. The MIND diet has been associated with improved cognitive thinking and has shown to both lower the risk and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease
– the leading cause of dementia.

Through cognitive assessments such as episodic memory, working memory, semantic memory, visuospatial ability and perceptual speed, researchers found that those following the MIND diet significantly lowered their risk of Alzheimer’s dementia (AD). Those who strictly followed the diet cut their risk by 53%, while even those who stuck to the diet moderately well still reduced their risk by 35%.

The MIND diet is centred around natural, plant-based foods, with a focus on brain- healthy whole foods, such as berries and green leafy vegetables, and a limited intake of animal-based and saturated fats.

Limit “unfriendly” brain foods – the less the better

• Butter/margarine – less than 1 tablespoon butter/day, avoid margarine
• Fast or fried food – less than once/week
• Red meat – less than 4 times/week
• Cheese – less than once/week
• Pastries and sweets – less than 5 times/week

Is fruit considered brain-healthy?

Fruits, a common recommendation in heart-healthy diets, haven’t been shown to slow cognitive decline or prevent dementia, with the exception of strawberries, and especially, blueberries. Other than eating berries at least twice a week, the MIND diet does not include recommendations for other types of fruit.

Components of the M.I.N.D Diet

Green Leafy vegetables – at least 6 servings/week (1 serving = 1/2 cup cooked or 1 cup raw)
Other colourful vegetables – at least 1 serving/day (1 serving = 1/2 cup cooked or 1 cup raw)
Berries – at least 2 servings/week (1 serving = 1 ounce, about 1/4 cup)
Nuts – at least 5 servings/week (1 serving = 1 ounce, about 1/4 cup)
Legumes –  at least 4 servings/week (1 serving = 1/2 cup cooked)
Whole grains – at least 3 servings/day (1 serving = 1 slice 100% whole-grain bread; 1/2 cup cooked brown rice, quinoa, whole grain pasta or oatmeal; 1 cup 100% whole grain ready to eat breakfast cereal)
Fish – at least 1 serving/week (1 serving = 3 ounces cooked)
Poultry – at least 2 servings/week (1 serving = 3 ounces cooked)
Olive oil – use as your primary cooking oil
Wine – 1 serving/day (1 serving = 5 ounces)

Most Common Issues for People

Dr.Cheryl LycetteI have now been a Naturopathic Doctor for almost two decades.   These are the common issues that challenge my patients.

People do not drink enough water.  I read once that by the time  a person feels thirsty they are actually down a liter in body stores.  So waiting to feel thirsty is not optimal.   Chugging a large glass of water will just make you have to run to bathroom within a 1/2 hour.  The ideal is to sip four to six 8 ounce glasses a day, between meals.  I have seen chronic coughs, sinus issues and headaches stop when water intake has been increased.

People do not get adequate sleep.  By adequate, I mean a good amount and a good quality.  The average adult needs 7- 8 hours nightly.  The quality of the sleep is effected by when the sleep takes place.  The body naturally starts to make melatonin  at 9 p.m.  It stops most of this production by midnight.  Growth hormone, which has  a huge hand in the body’s ability to heal,  is made during moderate exercise and when a person sleeps deeply between the hours of 1 and 3 am. If you are not managing to be in a deep sleep during this time,  you have missed out on a good part of your body’s healing time.  Yes, that does mean that overnight shift work is not a healthy choice.  I have seen people get away with it for years at a time,  but no one get away with it as their main career choice as an adult, without health repercussions.

People do not eat enough vegetables.  When I sit with new patients almost everyone knows this is a problem,  however this does not seem to be a motivator.  Many of the adults guilty of this have children.  These parents are very careful to make sure that their children eat their veggies,  but they are not so careful to get their own.  Eating more vegetables gives you more energy,  better skin,  better stool and will help you maintain a healthy weight.  If you have young children you might be able to get away with avoiding your vegetables while they get theirs,  but they won’t have to get very old before they pay more attention to what you do rather than what you say and then they will be adopting your bad habit.

People don’t play enough.  Parents are so busy getting their kids off to their classes and sports events,  but make no time for their own fun.  Why do so many of us accept that when you reach a certain age, have obligations and a mortgage,  that the fun is over?  For optimal health I think it is essential for people to strive for a balance of work and play.  Go for walks,  watch a movie,  read  a magazine, catch up with friends, learn to play an instrument, dance ……

be well,

Dr. Cheryl


Electro-magnetic Radiation

What you can’t see can harm you

Since the 1990’s government agencies, NGO’s, universities and independent laboratories have been studying the effects of electro-magnetic radiation (EMF) on the human body.  What has been determined is that man-made EMF are structurally different from the EMF found in nature including the subtle low frequency EMF that our body’s cells use to communicate with each other. The natural fields are random or  noisy in their frequency, amplitude and waveform, whereas the artificial EMF are regular and constant. For example, EMF from cell phones appear as regular bursts of microwave radiation, EMF from computer monitors are saw-tooth shapes, and EMF from AC-powered devices are sinusoidal. Our cells respond negatively to such regular fields, become stressed and try to protect themselves.

Common Ailments suspected to be caused by electromagnetic waves

Sleep disturbances
Concentration disturbances
Circulation disturbances
Asthma & respiratory diseases
Decline in performance
Burn out syndrome

Health Canada Offers Practical Advice on Safe Cell Phone Use

There are a small number of epidemiology studies that have shown brain cancer rates might be elevated in long term/heavy cell phone users.  Other epidemiology studies on cell phone users, laboratory studies and animal cancer studies have not supported this association.  The International Agency for Research on Cancer’s ( IARC) recent classification of Radio Frequency Field (RF) energy as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” is an acknowledgement that limited data exists that suggests RF energy might cause cancer.  At present, the scientific evidence is far from conclusive and more research is required. Read the full report.

ADR Protect

ADR Protect is a Class 1 medical device that protects the body from the harmful effects of electronic devices and the electromagnetic fields that they emit. The ADR Protect does not stop the production of radiation by these electrical devices (as this would make them function improperly) but changes the frequency of the waves that are emitted to ones that more closely match what the human body produces.


ADR-Protect (diameter 21 mm) is equipped with the elastic magnetic foil generating a specific spatial magnetic field. At certain points the ceramic substance and some oxidized metals are mounted, which exert influence in the area of infrared radiation. The ADR-Protect energy stimulator strengthens the body’s immunity to harmful environmental pollutants by regulating the organism’s functions.

ADR-Protect should be carried as close as possible to the body. Therefore, the following places to fasten it are recommended; the back of  a mobile device, the back of a watch, on a computer mouse, trousers’ and shirt’s pockets, purse/wallet, in your shoe.

adr protect

The energy stimulator should be fastened to electrical appliances on the reverse side of the encasement/closure (each ADR-Protect is equipped with a self-adhesive layer).

ADR Protect has an adhesive backing so that it can be affixed to the outer surface of an electrical appliance (for example, on the casing of cellular telephone, IPOD or computer).

Using ADR Protect is easy. Simply stick ADR Protect to the smooth surface of your device and you are protected from harmful effects of electromagnetic radiation emitted by your device.

Available at the Be Well Spa for $40.76

Read More

World Health Organization
What are EM Fields?

Cell Phone Radiation + Health

Virginia Hopkins
Cell Phones + EMF

Lloyd Burrel
EMF + Healthy Living

International Journal of Network & Mobile Technology
EM Radiation towards Adult Human Head from Handheld Mobile Phones

IEEE Global History Network
Biological Effects of EM Radiation


Get your GLUTEN-FREE Products HERE at the Be Well Spa

You or your friends may have gone gluten-free. Did you realize that most skin care products and make-up contain gluten?  The skin can absorb up to 64% of applied products and people with gluten sensitivity can have reactions to gluten on their skin.
To help you truly go gluten-free Dr. Cheryl has compiled a list of the products that the Be Well Spa carries to meet your needs.

  • All Zoya, Lucia, Green Beaver and VIVA products that we carry are gluten-free
  • All Naturopathica products are gluten-free except for the Oat Facial polish and Vitamin C moisturizer, due to the oat betaglucan.
  • All Jane Iredale products are gluten-free except for the following:
    • Absence,
    • Eye Highlighter Pencil/Double Dazzle Pencil,
    • Purelash Extender & Conditioner,
    • PureBrow Fix & Mascara,
    • PureBrow Gel,
    • PureLash Mascara,
    • PureLash Lengthening Mascara, and
    • Tantasia

Dandelion: Super Weed

dandelions at the Be Well SpaDandelion is treated as an unwanted weed. However, it’s tap root is great for breaking up densely packed soil and helps to alkalize the soil allowing for other plants to grow such as your lawn. Dandelion is also one of the most medically useful and nutritionally valuable plants available.

Dandelion greens are an excellent edible, either lightly steamed or raw in a salad. Being a bitter herb, it increases the efficiency of the digestive tract by increasing both stomach acid and appetite. The greens have a higher content of Vitamin A than all of the green leafy vegetables. It’s also high in iron, silicon, magnesium, sodium, potassium, zinc, copper, phosphorus, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, and B Vitamins.

For medicinal purposes, the root and leaves of the plant are readily available dried in pill, tea and liquid extract forms.

This super weeds’ medical applications range from the topical treatment of warts to an extract of dandelion being used in Japan for the treatment of breast cancer. However, dandelion is mainly known for its beneficial tonic effect on the liver, mostly due to the vitamin choline, which increases its efficiency.  It’s also useful to help and treat gall bladder stones, hepatitis, constipation, mononucleosis, cirrhosis of the liver and jaundice.

As well, dandelion can be used in the maintenance of diabetes and hypoglycemia due to the presence of the inulin, which has a balancing effect on blood sugar levels, helping to keep them from undergoing sudden and severe fluctuations.

If you’re pulling the dreaded dandelion from your lawn … showed it some respect and eat it.

Detox Talk

detox cleanse at the Be Well SpaSpring is a good time to unburden your mind and body with some detoxification regimes. Here are some suggestions;

Start Your Day
It’s a good morning habit to drink unsweetened lemon juice to aid in cleansing your liver and kidneys.  Squeeze 1/2 a lemon, dilute with water and drink 15 minutes before breakfast. This will also help keep you bowels regular, improve skin and reduce your weight.

The Master Cleanser
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/10 teaspoon cayenne pepper
8 ounces of water

Drink this liberally during the day (6 to 12 glasses). If you are tired or having headaches have 2 tablespoons of maple syrup in the Master Cleanser, rather than one. The Master Cleanser should only be done, unsupervised, for 3 to 5 days.

Salt Water Intestinal Cleanse
2 level teaspoons sea salt
1 quart lukewarm water

Drink the whole quart first thing in the morning; do not eat until 1 to 2 hours after. Rest or exercise lightly; however, stay near a bathroom. This is great to do while using the Master Cleanser to make it work even better. If next to nothing happens after doing this, increase the salt slightly. If you do this and a lot of stool comes out and you are left thirsty, you should reduce the salt a little next time. Anyone with edema or high blood pressure should only do this if supervised.

For a more comprehensive detox, we have at the Be Well Spa, Novi-Cleanse, a 23-day program consisting of three formulations designed to help the liver, the kidneys and the colon to eliminate accumulated toxins in the body. The Novi-Cleanse Kit contains three powerful products that work in synergy to aid in elimination of toxins. The formulas are Novi-Renal that helps support normal renal function, Novi-Lax which is used traditionally as a laxative for relief of occasional constipation, and Novi-Pur to support natural toxin elimination.

Get the Lead Out

lead_poisoningLead interferes with a variety of body processes and is toxic to many organs and tissues including the heart, bones, intestines, kidneys, and reproductive and nervous systems.

We are exposed to lead through contaminated air, water, soil, food, and consumer products. Vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, mustard, sunflower, and lettuce showed higher accumulation of heavy metals especially in their roots and older leaves. There is no known amount of lead that is too small to cause the body harm.

Symptoms of long-term exposure include abdominal pain, kidney damage, dizziness, forgetfulness, confusion, headache, anemia, irritability, and in severe cases seizures, coma, and death.

Symptoms of short-term effects of exposure can bring on headaches, abdominal pain, constipation, fatigue and even mild personality changes.

Your body stores lead in the blood, soft tissues, and bone; the half-life of lead in these tissues is measured in weeks for blood, months for soft tissues, and years for bone. Lead in the bones, teeth, hair, and nails is bound tightly and not available to other tissues, and is generally thought not to be harmful. In adults, 94% of absorbed lead is deposited in the bones and teeth, however, children only store 70% in this manner, a fact which may partially account for the more serious health effects on children.

The estimated half-life of lead in bone is 20 to 30 years, and bone can introduce lead into the bloodstream long after the initial exposure is gone. The half-life of lead in the blood in men is about 40 days, but it may be longer in children and pregnant women, whose bones are undergoing remodeling, which allows the lead to be continuously re-introduced into the bloodstream.

Also, if lead exposure takes place over years, clearance is much slower, partly due to the re-release of lead from bone. Many other tissues store lead, but those with the highest concentrations (other than blood, bone, and teeth) are the brain, spleen, kidneys, liver, and lungs. It is removed from the body very slowly, mainly through urine. Smaller amounts of lead are also eliminated through the feces, and very small amounts in hair, nails, and sweat.

The primary cause of lead’s toxicity is its interference with a variety of enzymes because it binds to sulfhydryl groups found on many enzymes. Part of lead’s toxicity results from its ability to mimic other metals that take part in biological processes, which act as cofactors in many enzymatic reactions, displacing them at the enzymes on which they act. Lead is able to bind to and interact with many of the same enzymes as these metals but, due to its differing chemistry, does not properly function as a cofactor, thus interfering with the enzyme’s ability to catalyze its normal reaction or reactions. Among the essential metals with which lead interacts negatively are calcium, iron, and zinc.

Lead is just one of many toxic minerals to which we have all been exposed. The others are aluminum, antimony, arsenic, barium, beryllium, cadmium, mercury and silver.  Here at the Be Well Spa we can determine, through hair analysis, what heavy metal burden you might be carrying and can help you discharge the toxicity.

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