Why I Do What I Do…
Dr. Michael Smith
“Your Integrative Health detective”
Practicing Since 1996
Fifteen years ago I began introducing Somatic Mindfulness, Trauma Release, Breathwork, and more Personal Mentoring into my practice and my patients responded so profoundly that I have been teaching these practices to other clinicians ever since.
I have a theory!
The chronic distress, inflammation, and neurotransmitter imbalances that occur in most Autoimmune Diseases mimics some of the biochemistry and embodied states of those suffering from PTSD and/or Addiction.
Also, the chronic distress, embodied tension, biochemical instability, chronic inflammation, and Neurotransmitter imbalances associated with PTSD and Addiction can create the conditions for activating the genes and metabolic processes for MANY chronic and Autoimmune Diseases.
I haved lived through all of these experiences and have walked the gradual road to recovery and better health.
Many years ago, I went from being a 165 pound athlete to becoming a 112 pound severely ill patient in the intensive care unit of the hospital – given three days to live. I was diagnosed with an almost fatal combination of Crohn’s disease and Colitis. Luckily I made it through all of that, but the doctors told me I would be tired, weak and in pain the rest of my life.
I struggled with that news as an athlete and began a long long journey of learning about health and about myself. Along the way I found out that I have Complex-PTSD, which explained A LOT about my life. I also came to realize that I have a very addictive personality and eventually became an alcoholic. As humbling as these parts of my life have been, they have taught me what it really takes to rebuild your health, your life, and your self – from the inside out.
Along my journey as a patient and as a doctor, I have found a combination of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Functional Medicine to work the best. By following an Ancestral Diet, getting regular exercise, meditating daily, giving myself enough real rest, and maintaining regular support through supplements and acupuncture treatments I live a surprisingly healthy life. I also practice and teach Somatic Mindfulness, a form Trauma and Addiction recovery and release.
These experiences and skills help me in my clinical practice EVERY DAY!
They have made me an avid researcher, effective clinician, and a good detective at getting to the root of complex medical conditions and life experiences.
I am a clinician who understands what it is like to live with an incurable disease and a person who has a great deal of compassion for those in need of support.
In my clinical practice, I focus on inspiring my patients to eat, move, rest, and play like all of our ancestors used to thousands of years ago.
Our modern lifestyle of eating processed foods, addictive behaviour, near-constant stress, a lack of exercise, and unresolved trauma are the underlying causes of most of today’s chronic illnesses.
Knowing the causes can direct you to the cures!
In my experience, each of us has a specific and VERY individual set of needs to get well.
If you are a patient seeking support, then I encourage you find mentors and clinicians that can meet all of your needs. The more complex the condition and situation, the more comprehensive and step-by-step your protocols will need to be.
If you are a clinician or caregiver, I encourage you to look at the whole person. People going through chronic erosive and potentially endless suffering are not regular patients. They are Complex and Chronic Disease patients.
However you came to this website, I congratulate you on looking for a comprehensive approach to your health and your life.