Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT [bettymurray]
What is your specialty? What does your work consist of?
I am a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor. I have a knack for making the science of nutrition easy to understand and implement. I am a nutrition counselor specializing in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance.
A master of the bio-chemistry of the body, I teach clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. I focus is on Bio-Individuality. Every body has its own chemical makeup and needs; health is accessible through intuitive eating based on the individual knowing that one personís food may be anotherís poison. I recognize that a personís relationship with nutrition and food is affected by other factors that supersede food.
I practice life changing holistic nutrition integrated with the best technology nutrition has to offer including a wide range of metabolic, digestive and nutritional balance testing.
I consult with people all over the globe and I am available for lectures, one-on-one nutrition counseling,and retreats. I am an accomplished speaker and lecturer and soon to be published author.
I am a member of the American Nutrition Association,the National Association of Nutrition Professionals and very active in continuing education with The Institute of Functional Medicine.
Can you provide a link to a site where we can get to know more about you or the activity you carry out?
You can read my blog at www.thetruthaboutthin.com
You can read about my wellness center in Dallas at www.livingwelldallas.com
To find out about hiring me as a speaker or retreat facilitator go to www.bettymurray.com.
To find out about metabolic testing go to www.metabolicblueprint.com.
What types of clients do you have? Why do they come to you and what can you offer them?
I work with man and women from all walks of life. Most of my clients come to me because they have reached the end of the rope with their current health care. My clients struggle with weight loss, digestive disorders, hormonal imbalances and fatigue. Many have been diagnosed or have self-diagnosed with an autoimmune disease or chronic fatigue.
I lend a compassionate ear to my clients story and what they have been through. It is through our experience that our biology often goes awry - stress, loss and grief, or years of yo-yo dieting and hidden imbalances come to the surface. From here, I use cutting-edge testing when needed to ascertain what body systems are out of balance. During this process, my client and I work together to develop a plan of action that works with their desires, lifestyle and needs to acheive optimal health.
I work locally at my office at Living Well Health and Wellness (livingwelldallas.com) and I also work national and internationally via Skype (bettymurray.cn) and via teleconferencing (972-930-0260). No client is too far away for help!
What is your definition of health, and of a healthy life?
My definition of health and a healthy life is living at consistent energy with zest, passion, vitaility and poise. I believe that aging (getting order) does not equate with slowing down, aching or losing vitality. We can live with zest, passion and verve.
A healthy life involves more than a healthy - beautiful body. It envolves having loving relationships and a mission for your life on this planet. It involves having a healthy mind, emotions and spirit.
A healthy life comes from a balanced, fulfilled mind, body, spirit in all areas.
What are some basic rules for those who want to live to be 100.
1. Eat as close to nature as possible - removing processed and nutrient poor junk food.
2. Drink water - lots of it.
3. Move your body in a way that inspires and brings you joy.
4. Embrace your good relationships and keep those you love active in your life.
5. Laugh often and loudly!
6. Reduce contact with people who drain or use you.
7. Get plenty of fresh air daily and sunlight.
8. You will never go wrong eating lots of vegetables and fruit.
9. Take life a lot less serious.
10. Enjoy the process - life is the journey not the destination.
Happiness and health: how much do they have in common, and how much myth is there in their relationship?
Happiness and health are inter-related. You cannot acheive real health without having happiness in your life. Of course, through living life, we have moments of un-happiness, it is part of the human experience, but the overall view of our lives must come from a place of happiness.
Conventional medicine and alternative medicine: what is real and what is superstition?
Both conventional medicine and alternative medicine are real. What we call "conventional medicine" is a rather young modality - just over 100 years old. Until the advent of sulfa drugs, antibiotics and modern surgery; homeopathics, herbs and medicinal foods were the medicine before this time. So, alternative medicine involving food, herbs, nutrients, mediation, acupuncture and the like are for all intensive purposes the acient medicine exisiting for over 5000 document years.
To me conventional medicine and alternative medicine are all forms on the same continuum - no better or worse than another. Alternative medicine is focused on prevention and conventional medicine is focused on treatment. Ideally, the more focused we are on prevention, the better. But when needed treatment is vital. Use together, they complement each other.
Can the mind cause or cure illness? What evidence do you have on the matter?
I think we underestimate and really have no idea of the power of our thoughts and how profoundly they can impact our well-being. Numerous studies have shown that outlook has played a role in cancer treatment, vitality after a heart attack and the prognosis for long-term illness. The mind may, in my estimation, be our greatest asset or hinderance in getting well. So you must address the body, spirit and mind together.
My clients who are positive and work on the mind-body- spirit (in whatever form that is for them) connection inevitably acheive significantly better results than those who view the body apart from the mind.
Do you recommend Vitamins and nutritional supplements? Do you believe their benefits have been proven?
I do use supplements in my practice. I know and have seen through labratory testing and client feedback that supplements can, if used properly, have a significant effect on health and re-balancing health.
I do metabolic and nutrient level testing to determine what supplements to use. I believe in test, don't guess! When you can see metabolic pathways that are hampered by missing nutrients (from the diet) for chemical reactions (metabolism), you know that providing the missing catalyst will improve function. We can prove and see improvement between before and after labratory testing.
Additionally, the science supporting supplements is extraordinary - even conventional medicine is on board with supplementation such as fish oil and vitamin D, in light of the fact that studies showed their efficacy in treatment more than 30 years ago.
Every day there is a new product to stop aging. Is it solace that we are really buying?
We are only scratching the surface of anti-aging medicine. It was only 100 years ago that our life span was just above 50 years. So anti-aging science is in its infancy. With that being said, much of the anti-aging information being peddled may not have an effect on you or your specific biochemistry. We are all unique.
I would be leary of marketed products that do not have studies provided, supported by literature and are not clearly listing the ingredients on the label. 'Proprietary ingredients" means anything can be in it.
The other thing to remember is natural is not always safe - belladonna is natural and deadly. There is nothing that can supercede taking good care of our body, feeding it naural foods and staying hydrated. You cannot party like a rock star and maintain the youthful glow of a baby at the same time!
Obesity, insomnia, and depression, are epidemic. What does that say about our way of life? What must be changed at the social level?
Our way of life, especially in the US, is in many ways toxic. We, at the expense of our body, burn the candle at both ends, expect nutrition to come from a drive thru and our body to hold up to a daily rat race that would make the Indy 500 look like a go-cart race. All of this is shortening our lives and making the life we have less vibrant and healthy.
Change is enable by one. I think the only real way for social change is to change at the individual level. We can only change ourselves. Through being the change-agent and becon of light, we can inspire change at the social level.
What is your opinion on the use of medical marijuana for terminal illnesses.
I feel that medical marijuana has it place in managing pain and other medicinal purposes and should be allowed.
The patient/doctor relationship is part of the success of treatment. What should it be like?
Working with a doctor or health care provider should be a partnership relationship, where each party has equal footing. The provider is there o provide guidance and support, the patient ultimately has the freedom to choose their recommendations or choose differently without hampering the relationship.
Is it reasonable to treat a patient whose condition is hopeless, only for medical experimentation?
Well, I do not actually "treat" patients. However, I believe that every effort should be made to provide care for a patient regardless of the assumed outcome.
How do patient beliefs or superstitions effect recovery?
The mind has power over our physiology. So, if a client feels that they are able to heal, acheive their desired results, and will recover; they often will have a significantly better result. So, when I work with my clients we also work on the mental/emotional aspects of their health as well.
What is the best way to give bad news to a patient?
I believe that any "bad" news should be delivered in honesty, compassionately and with enough time to also be able to talk through the emotions and feelings that may come up.
Is the best preventive medicine teaching someone how to live?
What are the most frequent errors of slimming diets.
The biggest error is thinking that this is a diet and not a lifestyle change so the diets are extreme and not maintainable. Once you are "off" the diet, you go back to your old lifestyle which means you get back to your old body as well.
Are too many unnecessary tests and x-rays performed in hospitals?
I do not work in a hospital setting so my experience is limited. I think that our medical system has a wait and see attitude so often a problem has been brewing for months if not years and more inexpensive and less invasive functional tests mayhave found issues long before it became a disease state. When you have a disease finding system, you inherently have an expensive and often unnecessary protocol of testing to find or rule out concerns.
I believe testing is important and I use functional biochemistry testing to do my job. These tests show how the body chemistry systems like metabolism are functioning. Often you can see metabolic malfunction before disease states so you are more able to change lifestyle to improve the biochemistry.
What new technologies have the most potential to save lives in the near future?
I think stem cell research has the largest potential to save lives who are struggling with significant dieases and injuries. However, changing lifestyle has the greastest opportunity to save lives because it has the greatest impact on all disease states like CVD, cancer and diabetes.
If someone consults you, what is your recommendation regarding cosmetic surgery and implants?
As a nutritionist, I do not consult about plastic surgery.
What is your opinion on the regulation of health care practice.
I think it is important to have safety regulations to provide an umbrella of eversight to protect patients. My largest concern is that the U.S. conventional medical community is often 10-20 years behind the research science, so advances are slow to make it to the mainstream public. There are significant economic and political influences that also keep advances at bay.
How do you asses the potential or the risks of genetic engineering on nutrition and human health?
I think that genetic engeneering of food without any testing of the effects on humans, other animals and the impact to the planet is one of the greatest travesties of our time, and I feel that we will never know what the long-term impact to the planet and its inhabitants will be. The bacterial markers used can, through transference, make our gut bacteria "round up ready". Also GE changes the protein make up of foods and will have an impact on expression of allergy and other immune responses.
I instruct my clients to avoid all GE foods and to only eat organic foods that are known to be genetically engineered.
Of the thousands of beauty products on the market, what percentage has a significant effect?
I do not have a study to point to but I believe that many of the products have significant hype with little true results.
How many times have you guessed what was wrong with a patient only by looking at his/her face?
I never use facial diagnosis as the only observation for determining problems in clients. But, you can see health concerns in the face such as allergy shinners, hydration, estrogen pigmentation changes and tongue coating in yeast infections. So the face is one of the things you can use to lead you to the right answers.
What areas of health or of medicine are you most interested in devoting yourself to in the next few years?
I am devoted to using food and nutrients to improve our individual biochemistry.
Would you change your profession for any another?
I always wanted to be a doctor. But, now I know that even if I were a doctor, I would be practicing much as I do as a nutritionist - providing lifestyle and biochemical solutions to improve health.
I am already a writer and speaker which was a dream of mine.
Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT
Dallas, TX - U.S.
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