Our Children Are Our Future: Teach Them To Be Healthy
By: Cindy Wechsler: Integrative Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
As a healthcare provider for three decades, I am extremely sad to witness the adverse effects the general environment has had on our health and the health of our children. I am particularly concerned with the failure-to-flourish conditions I have seen in the pediatric population. Will this generation not outlive their parents?
With over 80,000 laboratory-derived toxic chemicals found in every-day goods – from personal care products to the food we eat to the clothes we wear, nobody is unaffected. To further this dilemma, only a small percentage of chemicals have actively been tested for their adverse impact on the human population. Exposure is present at every level and all ages through our lives; our first exposure being as early as developing inside the womb. Since it is very difficult, nearly impossible to avoid all the toxins that are in the environment, it is imperative that we minimize our exposure by being proactive, educating ourselves as parents and making important well-informed choices for our children .
Growing children receive the most significant insult from the toxic load. This is directly correlated to their immature systems; immune, circulatory, respiratory and nervous thus impacting their ability to detoxify. Medications; prescription and over the counter, personal care products; diaper creams, bath and body lotions and prepackaged, processed foods containing additives, dyes and preservatives are all culprits in the cycle. Though genetics play a role in our health, genetics loads the gun but the environment pulls the trigger.
One of the most beneficial ways to help our kids is through nutrition. The food we eat should nourish our bodies with quality calories that provide all the vitamins, minerals and important nutrients our bodies need to grow and thrive. The food industry, politics, and our busy lifestyles, strongly influence our decisions on our food choices. The Standard American Diet (SAD) is devoid of nutrients and provides empty calories leading to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer. There is a beneficial solution. Consume whole foods, organic when possible, read labels and be knowledgeable about what you are putting in your body.
Hippocrates once stated “let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food”. It is evident by now there is a strong connection between food and health. Food has medicinal properties and offers natural remedies and should be first line. For example, berries contain antioxidants that fight against cancer, garlic acts as a natural antibiotic, fatty fish is beneficial for its omega 3, and there are a plethora of essential vitamins and minerals in different colored fruits and vegetables. All the benefits of a well-balanced, healthy diet impacts us on a cellular level and can counterbalance the harmful effects of toxins. As an integrative pediatric nurse practitioner, we can work together to minimize your child’s health risks by supporting wellness the natural way. It is your right as a parent to be your child’s advocate.
Cindy Wechsler is a certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner with a focus on integrative and holistic medicine. She specializes in the natural treatment of common childhood conditions including gastrointestinal disorders (constipation, reflux, gas, chronic belly pain), allergies, food sensitivities, behavioral issues and headaches. She teaches infant massage and offers lactation counseling.
Cindy Wechsler is a Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (CPNP) and has been caring for children and their families for 30 years. After graduating from Adelphi University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree in 1986, Cindy then went on to earn a Master’s of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree in 1990 from Yale University. She is also certified as both a Holistic Health Counselor and Educator of Infant Massage. Cindy has advanced training in various specialties through Breastfeeding Resources, Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) , Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM), Pediatric Integrative Mastermind Mastery Course, Infant Massage USA and Integrative and Functional Nutrition (IFN). Her work as a lactation consultant and weight loss counselor over the years has given her additional insight into the functional health of mothers and children .
With the rise in obesity, developmental and behavioral issues and chronic health conditions in children and the increased amount of pharmaceuticals prescribed to treat these ailments, it is Cindy’s passion and mission to educate parents on how they can be proactive in fostering the optimal health, growth and development of their children using natural medicine.
Cindy embraces Hippocrates philosophy “ Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food ” and believes that our food choices has a direct impact on one’s health. In order to cultivate the perfect environment for the baby to flourish and thrive in the womb, baby’s first foods should start with mom’s diet during the prenatal stage. Postnatal, the focus of healthy nourishment moves to the baby.
Hence, Cindy adresses food as medicine as a main focus of wellness. Cindy offers services in natural medicine by incorporating ideal nutrition, supplements and herbs to prevent disease as well as restore the body back to a healthy state. Appropriate traditional medicine is utilized when necessary.
She specializes in the treatment of stomach and bowel issues including constipation, reflux and chronic bellyaches, allergies, food sensitivities, eczema, attention and behavioral issues and headaches. She believes in taking a whole body approach by determining the root cause to a problem and not just treating the symptom. In addition, Cindy provides counseling in the areas of lactation, vaccines, nutrition (to children and adults) and weight management, and teaches parents how to do infant massage. Her practice and philosophy bridges the gap between integrative and conventional medicine providing alternative treatments and modalities that have a more favorable impact toward lifelong wellness.
In addition to her professional credentials, Cindy is the mother of two healthy, well adjusted young adults. She is compassionate, non-judgemental and caring and believes that every parent knows their child best. She listens and works with the parent to determine the best care for their child(ren).When Cindy is not in the office you can find her at the gym training for a bodybuilding competition or enjoying the outdoors.