The second day of the new year is the day that most of us really start to ponder our resolutions. (Because, let’s face it, yesterday was a wash anyway). And if you’re anything like us you have probably promised yourself to eat better, exercise more and consequently have more energy and be an all around happier and more attractive person. This is when we turn to Dr. Richard Ash, the founder of the Ash Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York, and a man whose professional motto is: “Sick and Tired of Feeling Sick and Tired?” To which we respond with a resounding: YES! We’re fed up with feeling tired, stressed, and out of sorts. We’ve had enough of waking up with aching joints, battling 4 a.m. insomnia and being bloated after dinner. And we’re definitely completely over feeling like a four star hotel to every little virus that comes our way.
Dr. Ash has heard umpteen such complaints (to give you an idea of just how many, his clinic has treated 25,000 patients). But unlike conventional doctors, Ash doesn’t reach for his prescription pad before you can finish telling him why you’ve come to see him. Instead, using a combination of Western medicine and alternative therapies, Dr. Ash delves deeper into what’s making you feel sick. “Many of us are suffering from unusual amounts of stress,” he says. “As a consequence we eat differently, we gain weight, and we have sleep disturbances with loss of energy and concentration. Many resort to medications, which only mask the symptoms as your body becomes more worn down, more acidic and more inflammatory, thus aging you. There are simple, fundamental ways of changing your body around without meds by seeing an integrative alternative doctor who can improve your diet and design a specific vitamin regimen which can more effectively achieve results in a shorter period of time.” To achieve this, the Ash Center practices what they call “functional” testing, which emphasizes searching for early signs of abnormalities before they become full-blown. This means performing extensive blood, saliva, Gastric Analysis and urine tests, which will map out precisely what deficiencies and dysfunctions lurk inside each patient’s body. At the core of the treatment is a regimen of vitamin and mineral supplements and a series of lifestyle changes, such as a nutritional plan, stress reduction and reducing environmental toxins.
One common problem that plagues Dr. Ash’s patients is that the acid levels in their bodies are too high. This stems from a diet of excessive protein, sugar and processed food. Too much acid will slowly break down the body’s immune system and deplete its energy levels, making you more susceptible to stress, disease and pain. To balance this, Dr. Ash recommends a diet that is low in sugar and processed chemicals and high in alkaline, which you can find in certain vegetables and fruits. However, each of Dr. Ash’s diet plans have been tailored around the patient’s test results, which show his or her specific nutritional needs and deficiencies, such as food allergies. It may sound simple, but the results are overwhelming. Patients like singer-songwriter Judy Collins, publisher Jason Binn and our own AHAlife curator, the renowned photographer Roxanne Lowit, report that Dr. Ash’s treatment has made them feel and look amazing. Says Lowit: “Thanks to Dr. Ash, I’m a brand new me and I love it!”