Three awareness weeks have the same gluten tag

May is National Celiac Awareness Month, Food Allergy Awareness Month and Digestive Disease Awareness Month. It is no wonder that these three all occur in the same month as the common denominator: avoiding gluten.

The second week of May is also the month that Naturopathic Physicians celebrate Naturopathic Medicine Week across Canada. This year celebrates 89 years of Naturopathic Medicine in British Columbia. More and more people are realizing that when they take responsibility for their health and take steps to make changes, they feel so much better.

Take for example Benjamin, age 45, who has had declining health over the last year so much so that it interfered with his work to the point that he had to take time off.  Since starting a candida program he is doing much better. When I questioned him about the source of his water supply he informed me that he was on well water. It turned out his water supply had double the count of E. coli and coli forms that are allowable in drinking water. No wonder he is ill!

The candida program will help to eliminate parasites as well as pathogenic bacteria (dysbiosis) and help to recolonize his intestinal tract with the proper bacteria. Purifying his water is also treating the cause!

Naturopathic medicine is a pay for service and there is time in the 30-45 minute routine appointments to investigate underlying causes of problems that other professionals may not have the time or expertise to pursue.

Water purification is certainly a hot topic. I don’t recommend buying bottled water as you don’t know how long the water has been stored in plastic or if the plastic is free of BPA (Bisphenol A), a carcinogen.

Most companies that sell water in five gallon jugs now use BPA plastic containers but still I choose to use three gallon glass storage containers that I get from a local wine store.

Water purification units purchased for home use should be reverse osmosis combined with a charcoal filter.

Obtaining water from a road side stream may be questionable especially if it is not regularly tested.

Well water can be an issue if there is contamination of the water table due to nearby farming practices or other sources of contamination or if the water is naturally high in some minerals such as iron or selenium. It is important to get the water tested yearly to monitor for these levels.

I also had Benjamin undergo the electrodermal testing we provide to identify and eliminate food sensitivities that may have contributed to his health challenges. This is done with a German biological medical machine that measures the test substance against an acupuncture point in the hand. Our tester measures over 200 items and the machine gives a ‘yes” or  “no” response to each item.

By the time Benjamin comes in for his retest in two months, most of his gut dysbiosis will have cleared and he can then add a few of the foods that he had eliminated after the initial testing.

During our visits I had reviewed with him many foods free of wheat, dairy and gluten.

I showed him what the food labels looked like, I showed him recipes on my website and helped him with meal planning. The word doctor means “to teach” so I take the time to do this with my patients.

Benjamin is now armed with loads of information to carry him forward to better health and he is back to his old self again.

You may not have celiac disease or digestive concerns but many people have food sensitivities that are causing them health challenges.

Take this month of May to learn more about how you can optimize your health so you can truly enjoy the 90 days of summer coming your way soon!


Dr. Ingrid Pincott, naturopathic physician, has been practicing since 1985 and can be reached at 250-286-3655 or

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