Category: Miscellaneous

Why New Year’s Resolutions Fail and How to Make Them Last All Year

As the New Year begins, people set intentions for self-improvement through the time-honored tradition of New Year’s resolutions. Among the most prevalent resolutions are those related to health. These resolutions reflect a genuine desire for better well-being and understanding the pitfalls can help navigate the journey to success. The unfortunate truth is that many of these resolutions fall by the wayside within a few weeks. Because of this, many people have given up on making their resolutions all together. Let’s delve into the reasons behind this phenomenon and explore effective strategies to make your resolutions stick this year.

Why Resolutions Often Fail

  • Lack of Specificity: One of the primary reasons resolutions falter is their lack of specificity. Vague goals like “eat healthier” or “exercise more” lack a clear roadmap, making it easier to lose focus and motivation.
  • Overambitious Targets: Setting overly ambitious goals can lead to burnout and frustration. Rapid, drastic changes are often unsustainable. Gradual changes are more likely to become lifelong habits.
  • Lack of Planning: Failing to plan is planning to fail. Without a well-thought-out strategy, it’s easy to succumb to old habits. Planning ahead minimizes the reliance on willpower alone, making it easier to adhere to the chosen path.
  • Unrealistic Expectations: Unrealistic expectations can quickly lead to disappointment. Weight loss, for instance, is a gradual process, and expecting rapid results may result in discouragement. Instead, celebrate small victories and appreciate the overall improvement in well-being, not just the numbers on a scale.
  • Lack of Accountability: Going it alone can be challenging. Sharing resolutions with a friend, family member, or health care provider creates a sense of accountability. Having a support system can offer encouragement during challenging times and provide an avenue for sharing successes and setbacks.

Strategies for Success: Turning Resolutions into Habits

  • Set SMART Goals: Make resolutions Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound (SMART). For instance, a SMART goal would be to “lose 10 pounds in three months by walking 30 minutes five times a week and eating one additional serving of vegetables daily.”
  • Start Small and Build: Begin with manageable changes and gradually build upon them. Small victories create momentum and instill confidence, paving the way for more significant adjustments over time.
  • Create a Plan: Develop a detailed plan outlining how the resolution will be achieved. This might involve creating a weekly meal plan, scheduling specific workout times, or seeking guidance from a healthcare professional or fitness expert. Be flexible with yourself and willing to adjust the plan if the first attempt isn’t working for you.
  • Focus on the Process, Not Just the Outcome: Shift the focus from immediate results to the process of self-improvement. Celebrate the journey, acknowledging the positive changes in habits and behaviors, even if the end goal is not yet reached.
  • Build a Support System: Share resolutions with friends or family who can provide encouragement and support. Joining a fitness class, online community, or partnering with a workout buddy enhances accountability and motivation.
  • If at first you don’t succeed – try, try again: Many resolutions are often abandoned after “falling off the wagon.” If you feel that you haven’t been successful when first attempting to achieve your goals, give yourself some grace. Improvement is the goal, not perfection.

Navigating Common Health Resolutions: A Practical Guide

  • Weight Loss: Instead of fixating on a specific number on the scale, aim to adopt a balanced, sustainable approach to nutrition and physical activity. If you already have healthy habits in place, consider seeing your healthcare provider to investigate non-lifestyle causes of weight gain. Celebrate non-scale victories like increased energy levels and improved mood.
  • Exercise More: Rather than committing to intense daily workouts, establish a realistic exercise routine that aligns with personal preferences. This could include activities like walking, cycling, or dancing. Consistency is key, so find enjoyable activities that can be sustained over time. If you don’t know what you enjoy yet, consider taking a few different types of exercises classes to see what they’re like.
  • Healthy Eating: Shift the focus from strict diets to creating a balanced, varied, and enjoyable meal plan. Gradually introduce more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains while minimizing processed foods. Experiment with new recipes to keep meals interesting and satisfying.
  • Quit Smoking: Quitting smoking is a significant achievement that often requires professional support. Explore smoking cessation programs, counseling, and alternative therapies like herbal medicine and acupuncture to help curb cravings. Enlist the support of friends and family and focus on the numerous health benefits of quitting.

A Journey, Not a Destination

As the New Year unfolds, health-related resolutions can transform from fleeting aspirations into lasting habits by embracing realistic goals, cultivating patience, and building a supportive environment. Remember, the journey to improved health is ongoing, and each day offers an opportunity for positive choices.

Boise Natural Health Clinic now Carries Beyond Balance Product Line!

Boise Natural Health Clinic is now partnered with Beyond Balance Inc to provide gentle herbal formulations for our chronic complex patients. 

Chronic complex illness is complicated

As many of my patients know, chronic complex illness can not only be difficult to recognize and diagnose, but also difficult to treat. There are so many different factors that play into a body’s ability to tolerate various herbal, nutritional, and even pharmaceutical products. Oftentimes, patients’ bodies are very sensitive and what is well tolerated in one person (or even at one time in a single person’s life!) can’t be tolerated in another person (or time!). This is where Beyond Balance comes in.

We need products to use in sensitive patients

Beyond Balance was created and formulated by an herbalist, Susan McCamish, and is used comprehensively throughout the US, Europe, Canada, and Australia. Her formulations are targeted at supporting the body’s abilities to detox and heal at a cellular level using herbs. These supplements are formulated to be used at very low doses and tend to be very well tolerated in even the most sensitive patients. I typically use Beyond Balance in my Lyme, mold, and co-infection treatment plans.

Successful case study of patient with severe allergic reactions

Over the years, I have used multiple of their formulations, but my most significant response was in a VERY sensitive patient who would have a sensation of a severe allergic reaction to multiple everyday odors/environments. We had tried multiple detox supportive supplements, which all caused the same reaction in her. We even tried using food as medicine and found she reacted to adding a tablespoon of cilantro to her diet! We decided to try Tox-Ease GL, which is a very gentle detox formulation by Beyond Balance. We started at 1 drop once a week and, as she could tolerate it, she increased her dose. I’m happy to report that now she can live her life relatively unbothered by her symptoms (they are almost completely gone!) and even engage in activities that would previously trigger her! She’s not even on the supplement anymore. These products are easy to take and effective!

If you are struggling with chronic complex illness, call for a free phone consultation with Dr. Falkner to see if she might be able to help. 

Methylene Blue – The Oldest New Med: for Energy, Chronic Infections, and More!

Methylene blue is one of the oldest synthesized medications to exist. It was originally made in 1876 for malaria. It was approved by the FDA for a condition called methemoglobinemia, which is a relatively rare condition. In simplest terms, methylene blue helps increase the oxygen carrying capacity of the red blood cells.

So, what can methylene blue be used for?

– We have found that not only is methylene blue great for saving lives and fighting malaria (its official uses), but it’s an amazing mitochondrial support that also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant uses. Methylene blue has been in the news recently for these “anti-aging” actions. By boosting the mitochondria (remember in 8th grade biology- “mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell” – it generates the energy currency our bodies run on), we increase energy production in the body.

– We also use methylene blue for neurological protection and health, including for concussions, dementia, depression, chronic fatigue, and long COVID neurological symptoms. Methylene blue is especially good for chronic fatigue due to its anti-inflammatory effects, its mitochondrial support (it enables us to skip steps in energy production!), and its ability to also boost mood.

– Lastly, we can combine methylene blue with other meds and supplements to better treat difficult infections like mold, babesia, bartonella, viruses (including potential for long COVID and EBV), and even pain.

We can give Methylene Blue both orally and IV. Unusually, methylene blue is well absorbed and crosses the blood brain barrier easily orally. However, side effects can include nausea (much better with lots of water), headaches, fast heart rate, and blue/green urine and/or saliva.

Methylene blue has a long history of use for various conditions safely. We can use this as another tool to enhance brain function, energy, mood, and fatigue!

Mitochondrial Damage and Chronic Illness

In late May, I attended the 13th Advanced Applications for Medical Practice (AAMP)’s conference on Mitochondrial Medicine: Healing in Chronic and Post Infectious Illness. It is a 3-day conference that is packed with amazing information that I’ve been attending for the last three years.

The Cell’s Mitochondria – damage creates long-term symptoms

As some of us remember from school biology, mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cell.  Inside them, complex processes occur to create ATP, which is the currency of energy for the body. These processes (anyone remember the Kreb’s cycle or Electron Transport Chain?) are very delicate and highly dependent on multiple nutrients to work correctly.

There is new information that chronic inflammation as well as chronic and acute infections (including Epstein Barr virus, COVID 19, etc), and even medications and toxins can damage our mitochondria and may contribute to post-infectious illness (such as Long Covid), chronic fatigue from other diseases like cancer, Lyme, and autoimmune disease, and other dysfunctions in the body.

So, when you treat the illness or source of inflammation, but still don’t feel better, you may need to address damaged mitochondria.  By giving more nutrients and also by removing obstacles to healing. 

Nutrients power energy production

The main nutrients needed to power mitochondrial production of energy include carnitine, alpha lipoic acid, multiple B vitamins, CoQ10, PQQ, selenium, zinc, and multiple other antioxidants. We also use phosphatidylcholine to help replace the delicate membrane of the mitochondria as well to allow better diffusion of nutrients in and energy out from both the cells and mitochondria. Here at Boise Natural Health Clinic, for broad spectrum mitochondrial support, we like MitoNRG, MitoCore, and BioPC Pro.

Are your Mitochondria Working?

We can indirectly test the function of mitochondria with a urine test called an Organic Acid Test (OAT). The OAT test is a nice 10,000 foot view of overall health. The test can give general information about the health of the mitochondria and Kreb’s cycle, gastrointestinal infections and health, indirect neurotransmitter measurements, vitamin levels, and detox abilities. I often use this test when I’m not sure where to start with a case or am suspicious of mitochondrial dysfunction, GI dysfunction, and nutrient deficiency. Contact us if you’d like to get an Organic Acid Test by Mosaic Diagnostics and get a glimpse of your mitochondrial health!

The Benefits of Humidity

Keeping Indoor Air at 40 – 60% relative humidity will help you feel better in your skin and reduce your risk of flu, COVID-19, and other respiratory illness. 

Every Fall, when the heater comes on, my skin, respiratory passages, and hair dry up.  It’s time to get out the humidifier.  We run it 24/7, all winter long in our bedroom and feel noticeably better!  I’ve cut way back on my lotion use.  My nose isn’t crusty.  I snore less because I can breathe thru my nose better.

Americans spend about 90% of our time indoors. 

What is relative humidity? – it’s the % of moisture in the air compared to the maximum water the air can hold at a given temperature.  Warm air can hold more water vapor than cold air.   40% – 60% is the Goldilocks zone.  Not too humid and not too dry. 

Benefits of moister air:

  • Skin – increased levels of moisture in the hair can help your skin feel soft, supple and more nourished.  Less heel cracking. 
  • Nose, throat, lungs – less snoring, less crusty noses, less chapped lips. 
  • Lower risk of respiratory illness – New research from MIT suggests that the relative humidity in the air in our homes may be an important factor affecting the transmission of COVID-19.  Many past studies have shown that many viruses stay alive in the air much longer at humidity levels below about 40%.  An airplane cabin is held at 20% humidity, one of the reasons we get sick when traveling.

Low cost and easy way to get the facts on your indoor air. About $15.


Some people have whole house humidifiers, but if you don’t, consider getting one for at least the bedroom.  I prefer the ultrasonic cool mist versions over the ones with the fans which are a little noisy.  I also like the larger ones, so I only have to fill every day or two.   Keep clean by following the manufacturer’s instructions.  Unplug and empty.  I use 1 cup of water and 1 cup white vinegar and let it sit for an hour.  Be sure to rinse the reservoir and nozzle well too – gunk can build up. 

Hydrate your body orally too!

Read another article by Joan Haynes NMD Could Your Symptoms be Due to a Lack of Water?  Sometimes it’s That Easy!  I share my recipe of home-made electrolyte water. 

Feeling Run Down? Consider Cellular Membrane Repair

Cellular membranes become damaged in every acute & chronic illness, environmental toxic exposure, and with aging.  I credit membrane lipid replacement with helping me recover energy that I didn’t know was missing.

Cellular membrane lipids (fats in the cell membrane) are essential to life and vital to cellular health.

  • They provide the barrier for our cells by separating the inside of the cell from the
  • outside environment
  • They assist chemical and enzymatic reactions
  • They are part of receptor signaling and cellular recognition
  • They store energy

Supplemental MLR has been shown to restore cellular functions:

  • restore cellular and mitochondrial function (think energy)
  • Reduce symptoms such as fatigue, pain, vision issues, sleep disturbances, gastrointestinal
  • issues, chemical sensitivities
  • Increases absorption and transport of nutrients
  • Restore age-associated loss of function
  • Improve cardiovascular blood markers
  • Remove toxic chemicals and other substances
  • Be safe, inexpensive, effective, and convenient

Supplementation can supply enough membrane lipids to repair damaged lipids and return cellular membranes to normal function. They are quickly and efficiently absorbed. After a large meal, over 90% of glycerophospholipids are absorbed and transported into the blood within 6 hours.

The dose is 2-6 grams per day and higher doses (6g) if dealing with toxic chemicals, like the chemical exposure experienced by Gulf War Veterans. MLR is safe over long periods of time in high amounts without toxic or adverse side effects.

We carry BioPC Pro by Orthomolecular which provides approximately 6g per serving of glycerophospholipids. I credit this product with helping me recover energy that I didn’t know was missing! 

How to Decrease Jet Lag

By Dr. Nicole Maxwell

Planning to travel?  Want to take advantage of every minute?  Learn how to decrease the symptoms of jet lag so you can enjoy your time instead of wanting to sleep the day away.

Jet lag symptoms include: 

  • Disturbed sleep — such as difficulty falling asleep, early waking or excessive sleepiness.
  • Daytime tiredness.
  • Difficulty functioning at your usual level.
  • Stomach problems, constipation or diarrhea.
  • A general feeling of not being well.
  • Mood changes.

Hydration: dehydration worsens symptoms of jet lag and airplane travel promotes dehydration.  Make sure to hydrate well before, during and after your flight.  Avoid alcohol, soda and caffeine as those promote dehydration as well.  Choose an aisle seat so you can take bathroom breaks as needed.  Consider drinking a glass of water every waking hour on your flight.

Melatonin: Melatonin is related to light – light suppresses melatonin secretion.  Crossing time zones disrupts the melatonin cycle.  Consider taking melatonin upon arrival one hour before the new bedtime.  If you arrive in the morning, wait until that evening to supplement.  1-3mg should be plenty.

Homeopathic combination remedies like No Jet Lag can be very helpful for recovering from jet lag.  No Jet Lag directions: chew 1 upon take off, one in the middle of flight, one upon landing and one before bed, local time. May also chew 1 three times a day the next day if needed.

Acupressure can also be helpful for jet lag and it’s free!  Check out this link by physical therapist, Mary Golob for the acupressure points and the associated times.

Fasting hasn’t been tested in clinical trials yet and the theory, extrapolated from mice, is that the body’s circadian clock gets suspended when fasting to conserve energy.  When you eat soon after landing, the clock starts again.  The doctors who did the mice research recommend fasting 12-16 hours before and during the flight then eat a healthy meal once you land, as soon as is convenient.  Drink lots of water during the flight though!  If you want to eat on plane pre-order “low sodium” meal to prevent dehydration.

Earthing: walk outside on a natural surface for 20 – 30 minutes with bare feet.  The theory here is that the earth has a rhythm and by grounding yourself in the new time zone, your rhythm will match the earth’s rhythm in the new time zone.  I have colleagues who swear by this.  I think it sounds lovely to squish your toes in the sand or lay on the grass and become present to the new surroundings.

Supplements: An adrenal support in the morning of new time zone can help increase morning cortisol.  Then take phosphatidyl serine 3 hours before the new bedtime and again at the new bedtime to help decrease nighttime cortisol.  This resets the cortisol rhythm to the new time zone.  These are available at Boise Natural Health Clinic.

May you have wonderful travels with little jet lag interference.  Feel free to come in for a tune up as well to prepare for your best trip yet.




Natural Cleaning Recipes

by Nicole Maxwell, NMD

Adapted from Lauren Cox at Natural Partners

You may have a cabinet somewhere in the house complete with glass cleaner, bleach, abrasive bathroom cleaner, etc. Many conventional cleaning products contain chemicals that can be harmful to your health.  

Try some of these great healthy alternatives.  Put them in glass spray bottles to reduce plastics in the house as well.  You will cut down on chemicals in your home and oftentimes save money!

Here are some interesting facts:

  • An EPA study concluded that the toxic chemicals in household cleaners are 3 times more likely to cause cancer than outdoor air. (
  • The EPA found the levels of air pollution inside the home can be two to five times higher (and sometimes even 100 times higher) than outdoor levels. (American Lung Association and 3M survey, 2002)
  • The EPA ranks poor indoor air quality among the top five environmental risks to public health. (American Lung Association and 3M survey, 2002). Here is a link for plants that help improve air quality.

Window Cleaner

¼ cup rubbing alcohol
¼ cup white vinegar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 cups purified water

Try plain packing paper to wipe to decrease streaking.

All Purpose Cleaner

½ cup white vinegar
2 cups water
10 drops oregano oil
10 drops clove oil
10 drops lavender oil
10 drops lemon oil

Toilet Scrub

¾ cups borax
1 cup white vinegar
10 drops citrus oil of choice
10 drops mint oil

Wood and Floor Cleaner

1 cup white vinegar
2 oz mild castille soap
3 cups purified water
20 drops essential oils of choice

Wood Polish

¼ cup coconut oil
⅓ cup white vinegar
4 cups hot water

Laminate and Tile Cleaner

1 tablespoon baking soda
2 cups hot water
10 drops citrus oil of choice

Moldy Grout Cleaner

1 part hydrogen peroxide
1 part water
(spray and let sit at least 45 minutes and wipe down with a sponge)

Leather Cleaner

¼ cup white vinegar
¼ cup olive or coconut oil
10 drops essential oil of choice

Air Fresheners

Consider an aromatherapy essential oil diffuser or make a simmer pot. Just add in your favorite oils and herbs to a gallon of water and let it simmer all day. Try lavender, rosemary, lemon or clove.


by Joan Haynes, NMD

Fibromyalgia is characterized by wide-spread pain and chronic fatigue, there is no known single cause.  However, investigating and treating contributing factors often brings relief.   Here are some ideas we can help you explore:


Hormones involving the thyroid, ovaries and adrenal glands are essential in regulating energy, mood, appetite, sleep, behavior, and stress response.  Thyroid testing is a blood test which measures TSH, free T3, free T4 and thyroid antibodies.  Your sex and adrenal hormones are best done via urine or saliva testing (estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA, and cortisol). Read more at Testing for Hormone Imbalances.

Neurotransmitter Imbalances

Fibromyalgia patients frequently suffer from depression and anxiety.  Research has found that having low levels of the neurotransmitters noradrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine in the brain are common among fibromyalgia sufferers.  Low serotonin in particular has been associated with pain sensitivity and sleep disturbances and in conventional medical practices patients are often prescribed antidepressants with some success.

At Boise Natural Health Clinic we help manipulate neurotransmitters using Targeted Amino Acid Therapy, using supplements such as 5-HTP, tryptophan, and L-theanine.  Neurotransmitters can be measured – we use urine testing to take the guess work out.  READ MORE about neurotransmitter testing.

Inflammation from Food

Widespread body inflammation can be cause by both pro-inflammatory diet and specific food sensitivities.  Here’s an article to learn more: Are Foods Causing Your Symptoms.

Nutritional Deficiencies

Studies have been conducted showing that certain nutrients can have significant improvement on pain levels such as D-Ribose, magnesium, vitamin D and others.  Vitamin D, for example, helps reduce cytokines which are inflammation-causing chemicals.  Omega-3 oils, found in flax seeds and fish, is another researched food shown to reduce inflammation.

Mitochondrial Dysfunction

Mitochondria are little organelles that live inside your cells and are responsible for the generation of energy.  If not working properly, fibromyalgia symptoms may appear.  Certain nutrients are needed for mitochondria to work.  An Organic Acid Test is a way of measuring your mitochondria function.  Depending on results, treatment may involve using supplements such as coenzymes Q10, creatine, L-carnitine and folate.


Without a doubt sleep plays a huge role in fibromyalgia symptoms.  It is during sleep that the body makes growth hormone which rejuvenates our muscles.  Poor sleep can be due to hormone imbalances, nutritional deficiencies and lifestyle factors.  Solving sleep issues goes a long way toward feeling better.

Come Visit Us

Untreated fibromyalgia can be a life-altering illness but there is help available.  At Boise Natural Health Clinic we want to help you uncover the factors that contributed to its onset, not just cover up the symptoms with medication.  A free-phone consult may be the way to begin, 208-338-0405.


Joan Haynes, NMD

Feeling more chilly than those around you?  Some causes could be a low thyroid, anemia, diabetes or Raynaud’s Syndrome. Here’s how to find out.

Lab Tests

Our office or your doctor can run some of the following tests.  Tests are selected depending on any other symptoms or health concerns you may have.

  • CBC, Ferritin – will find anemia
  • TSH, Free T4, Free T3 – will pick up a low thyroid
  • ANA, Rheumatoid Factor, Sed rate – will look for autoimmune disease
  • Fasting blood sugar and HgbA1C – will catch diabetes

Raynaud’s Phenomenon

Usually people with Raynaud’s have blue or white skin discoloration with the cold. Here’s a great article from Medicine Net describing Raynaud’s Phenomenon.

Supplement and practices that may help keep your Raynaud’s under control:

  1. Flavinoids.  Found in food and also in supplements, flavinoids dilate blood vessels.  2000 mg 1 – 3 times per day.
  2. Cayenne capsules.  1 or 2 capsules twice a day (with food), or sprinkle on your food regularly.  Great warming effect.
  3. L-arginine.  Increases nitric oxide in the blood and will dilate blood vessels.  Dose is 2 grams – 6 grams per day.  (L-arginine is also well known to help erectile dysfunction.)
  4. Magnesium decreases vasoconstriction and helps the blood vessels relax.  Approx 200 mg three times a day is a good dose.  If your dose is too high, you’ll get lose stool so back down.  Look for Magnesium Citrate.
  5. Ginkgo helps with blood flow to microvasculature.  40 mg three times a day.  Look for a standardized extract.
  6. Caffeine constricts blood flow – so limit or eliminate it.
  7. Relaxation and visualization can work.  Studies show that you can warm your fingers and toes by using your mind to increase blood flow and temperature.  Practice by holding an old fashioned thermometer between your thumb and fingers and watch it climb.
  8. Acupuncture – in one study it reduced attacks by 63%