To ultrasound or not to ultrasound

Hi there,

20 Weeks Whitney















Somewhere between week 18 and 20 pregnant women usually go for an anatomy ultrasound to check how baby is doing and maybe find out the sex of the baby.

I had mine a week ago and we found out it’s a…..drum roll please…..sorry, you’re going to have to wait a little longer before I tell you. Yes, that was mean.

My ultrasound was with a new tech who was being coached by a more experienced tech. It was a nice experience because they were chatting about this and that about my baby. So I got to see and understand a bit more about what I was seeing when I was craning my neck to watch what they were doing for an hour.

Is ultrasound safe? 

It is generally believed to be safe for mom and baby, is painless, gives results quickly, and is convenient, however because “a form of energy and, as such, demonstrates effects in biological tissues it traverses (bioeffects).(1)”

50% of physicians and obstetricians polled believed ultrasounds in low-risk pregnancies should be kept to 1-3 and 70% disapprove of “keepsake/entertainment” ultrasounds (2). However, is this based on fact or generally held beliefs?

The risks of ultrasound are thermal and mechanical.

I tried to find more research about the exact mechanisms and some definitive answers for you but this was very challenging. I think this topic is a whole thesis that I could spend a lot of time on.

My general philosophy is to strive for the least amount of intervention necessary. If you need another ultrasound for medical reasons I think that’s very important. Discuss the risks and benefits with your health care provider to help you make up your own mind.

I thought I would just put this out there as food for thought.

Stay tuned for more highs and lows of pregnancy….I think my heartburn has just started and there is still so much time to go! I’m in trouble!

Talk soon,




1. Semin Perinatol. 2013 Oct;37(5):295-300.

2. J Ultrasound Med. 2007 Mar;26(3):319-25.


Our new welcome video

We had a great morning filming this a few weeks ago. We invited some of our favourite people to star in our short welcome video with us. Erin Smith, RMT (705) 796-1489 and her husband Guy and little Henry. We also had our good friend Trudy who works next door at Therapeutic Mobility. She’s the one getting acupuncture and cupping. Our video was shot by Carole who is a lovely local videographer. She was so fun to work with.

Check it out and share with your friends!

33% of Women Want Twins

So the title of this article may be misleading but it’s an interesting fact from one study from the Journal of Reproductive Medicine in 2013 May-June.

I came across a study performed in Utah with women who were prescribed clomiphene aka Clomid. The researches conducted phone interviews with 43 women from local community clinics.

It was found that most women were prescribed clomid appropriately based on their fertility status and ovulation. What was found lacking was the monitoring of their cycles. This is where we come in. We help women even before they are prescribed Clomid to help monitor their cycles and help improve their cycles through acupuncture, diet, supplementation and more here at our clinic. It’s something we have a special interest in and extra training in to help our parents-to-be.

The interesting side note from the study was that  24 of the women (56%) said they would be fine having twins, and 14 (33%) said they would prefer to have twins if possible.

So why do you think a 3rd of women in this study preferred twins?

Easy Chicken Roasted in a Crock Pot

As I write this at the clinic, I have a chicken cooking at home. I love that when I get home from work tonight, my meal will be mostly ready. All I will need to do is steam some green beans and maybe have some corn on the cob because it’s in season. I have cooked small chickens in the oven before but I always worried it wasn’t cooked all the way through. Since this is cooked in the crock pot, the juices stay inside and it doesn’t dry out while I can leave it for the length of time required and I know it will be done. The skin doesn’t get crispy but we try not to eat a lot of the skin anyway because of it’s high fat content. Try it at home with an organic or free range chicken. We got ours from the Warwick Hughs Food Market The chicken itself came from Edencrest Farms:

  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne (red) pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 onion
  • 1 large chicken
  1. Combine the dried spices in a small bowl.
  2. Loosely chop the onion and place it in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Remove any giblets from the chicken and then rub the spice mixture all over. You can even put some of the spices inside the cavity and under the skin covering the breasts.
  4. Put prepared chicken on top of the onions in the slow cooker, cover it, and turn it on to high. There is no need to add any liquid.
  5. Cook for 4 – 5 hours on high (for a 3 or 4 pound chicken) or until the chicken is falling off the bone. Or cook on low 8-9 hours. Don’t forget to make your home-made chicken stock from the bones! ( I throw water, salt, thyme, carrots, onions, peppercorns and celery in the pot and let it cook on low over night with the bones)

Thanks to this source for the recipe:

Is my baby ready for solids?

I’m asking myself this question now. Little Jillian is 5 months old now and many of the women in my baby group are discussing this very question. Is it time? How do I do it? What comes first?

I’m also getting this question from my relatives. The older generation is asking “so when do they recommend starting solids now?” They are realizing that research changes and views change with generations.

So what is the right thing to do?

As with any parenting decision I think the most important thing is to be confident in your own decision. All parents will do things differently, so you need to be ok with that. Gather the information and make informed decisions about everything. This can seem overwhelming, but listen to your intuition and also to trusted health care professionals.

I’m referring back to what I learned in Pediatrics class with my mentor in naturopathic medicine. So here are a few considerations to take into account:

Is my baby ready for solids?

  • Able to sit up well without support
  • Tongue reflex is gone – baby doesn’t automatically push solids out with her tongue
  • Teeth are starting to come in
  • Baby is interested and watches what you are eating
  • Baby can pick up food and put it in her mouth with pincer grasp

The following are NOT good reasons for starting solids:

  • Baby is “big” or has doubled her birth weight – the AAP recommendations of starting solids at 6 months make no execptions for babies who weigh more
  • Baby is “small” – ounce for ounce, breastmilk has significantly more nutrients than any type of solid food and is easier to digest and assimilate
  • Baby doesn’t sleep through the night – 2 studies have shown that babies who eat solids before bed had the same patterns as those who had no solids

If you want more information on how I’m going to introduce foods, what order etc, bring your baby in for a well baby check to become a patient and I can coach you through it.

Layered Quick Salad

I threw this together for lunch with the stuff I found in my fridge.

  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 tomato, chopped
  • handful of organic baby spinach
  • 1/2 corn on the cob, leftover, kernals sliced off cobb
  • 1/4 cup black beans, black-eyed peas (I soaked them overnight then boiled for 1.5 hours)
  • sprinkle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
  • put in container with a lid and shake to mix