Category Archives: Member Blog

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Acupuncture

Guest Blog Contributed by Chamber Member Kendra Dale, LAc. (Licensed Acupuncturist)


Acupuncture Needles are Really Small

People who haven’t tried acupuncture might recall memories of childhood injections and hesitate to try a therapy that involves getting poked with needles. However, the average size of an acupuncture needle is .25 mm which is 20 times smaller than the average hypodermic needle used for injections. That is just over twice the size of a human hair. Depending on where the needles are inserted, it’s often a painless procedure. There can be unusual sensations as the body’s bio-electric energy or qi is being mobilized; however, they don’t last long and aren’t painful. For very sensitive people, the tiniest needles of just .18 mm can be used, and acupuncture needles don’t have to be inserted deeply to be effective.

Acupuncture Treats More Than Just Pain

Acupuncture is gaining wider acceptance as an effective treatment for pain of all kinds, and many people know about this. But did you know that acupuncture can treat a lot more than low back pain? Acupuncture can treat many different types of problems; there isn’t space to list them all. A few common conditions are early stage colds, seasonal allergies and hay fever, nausea, anxiety and depression, infertility, and many neurological disorders.

One key area acupuncture can make a huge difference is with a stroke patient. If a patient can be treated with acupuncture within the first three weeks of a stroke occurring, there can be a considerable improvement. After 3-4 weeks, acupuncture is still effective, but recovery is slower. The documentary 9,000 Needles tells the story of a competitive bodybuilder who recovered from a stroke using acupuncture.

Some acupuncturists focus on treating vision issues, emotional health, or PTSD. An acupuncturist I am currently studying with treats patients with Parkinson’s, rheumatoid arthritis and cerebellar atrophy among many other conditions.

Your Acupuncturist Doesn’t Just Do Acupuncture

Most licensed acupuncturists (LAc.) have gone through at least four years of post-graduate training before they get their licenses. These days, some are studying for 5 years and are graduating with doctorates in Oriental or East Asian Medicine. During that time, in addition to acupuncture, they likely studied traditional herbology, tuina, or Chinese medical massage, cupping, guasha scraping, moxibustion (a form of heat therapy), nutritional counseling and exercise (Taiji and qigong) to help patients find health and balance. Acupuncture is just one modality under the umbrella or Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), also referred to East Asian Medicine (EAM).

In China, the most commonly sought out traditional therapy is herbal medicine. These customized herbal formulas treat everything from colds to cancer. When I was living in Guangzhou China during the SARS outbreak, the teaching hospital of the TCM university where I was studying, successfully treated all their admitted cases of SARS. Not one of the patients treated with herbal formulas died, in contrast with the many deaths that occurred with standard medical treatment.

Herbal medicine has some practical limitations in the US due to lack of familiarity with herbal medicine and cost. However, if you are someone doesn’t feel well, and standard medicine cannot find anything wrong or simply doesn’t have a treatment, look into Chinese herbal medicine for a more personalized approach.

There are a lot of Different Styles of Acupuncture.

The traditional style of medicine practiced throughout East Asia started developing in China over 5,000 years ago. Just over 2,000 years ago the standard original medical text, called the Yellow Emperors Classic, (which many including myself still read today), was well established and spread to countries like Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. Over time, acupuncture developed, and different countries started having their own styles. Within China, medical knowledge was often passed down through families, and families developed their own styles as well.

Your acupuncturist may have decided to focus on any number of styles that are still being taught today. Japanese style acupuncture is known for being very gentle and be better for the very sensitive. TCM style acupuncture tends to focus on using points on the traditional acupuncture channels and can have a stronger stimulation. Newer systems of acupuncture focus on the use of the ear or the scalp for treatment and work well for anxiety and neurological conditions. Tung style acupuncture is a popular style that falls under the family lineage category and is known for immediate pain relief. And there are many more.

The point is that the field of acupuncture is very broad, and each style has its own techniques. If you’ve tried acupuncture once and it didn’t work for you, it may have had to do with the practitioner’s individual style and experience. Try a different style, and you may get the results you are hoping for.

Acupuncture Research is Growing

Though very ancient, acupuncture is a relatively new field in the US, with the first acupuncturists appearing in the late ’70s. In the ’80s and ’90s, there was very little research on acupuncture. Because mainstream medicine didn’t understand it, acupuncture was often dismissed as superstitious. However, for the last 15-20 years, research has been pouring out of China on all aspects of Chinese medicine including acupuncture, and there is growing amount research from the US and Europe giving evidence for its effectiveness.

Just in Portland, OHSU and Providence are using acupuncture as part of their cancer treatments, and acupuncture is becoming more established in California hospitals as well. As the US is moving through the opioid crisis, more and more doctors are suggesting acupuncture as an alternative to pain killers.

For those who are a little more skeptical and need evidence before they are willing to try something as unfamiliar as acupuncture, there are resources that can direct you to the research on acupuncture. Check out the Acupuncture Now Foundation and the Society for Acupuncture Research for information on acupuncture research.


For more info on this topic contact Kendra Dale, licensed acupuncturist and Chinese medicine practitioner at Heartwood Healing Center.  Website | Phone 503-388-6583 | 29781 SW Town Center Loop West, Suite 800 Wilsonville, OR 97070 |


10 Essential Wedding Planning Tips & Tricks

Guest Blog Contributed by Chamber Member Kindred Spirits Planning & Design


You’re Engaged!!  

Now is the time you start thinking about telling everyone and planning your perfect day! This process can seem a bit overwhelming at first, but no worries we are here to help! Here are our 10 Essential Wedding Planning Tips & Tricks to help make this time a bit easier and a lot more fun!

  1. Celebrate, enjoy the moment and tell your parents before posting on social media!! (Brought to you by a mother.)

Telling your friends and family is one of the most exciting tasks after becoming engaged. You’ll want to make it public, as soon as possible, that you are making this huge commitment with the love of your life! Celebrate this time and enjoy with your new fiancé (yes let that word sink in.)

When it comes to the announcement, you have so many options to choose from. We encourage you to decide together and do something that fits you as a couple, especially for social media! However, remember that there are people that are going to want to hear this amazing news in person (like your parents). Make sure to have your close family and friends in the loop before you put up that super adorable pic of you with your ring!

Fun ways to share the news:

Host a gathering. (Dinner or a little party.)

  • Have a reveal. (Tell them in a way that fits you as a couple uniquely.)
  • Tell them in private one on one.
  1. Pick a season, narrow it down to a date

You may think this is a weird way to start…” Why a season?” One of the first vendors that you will choose for your big day will be the venue. In most cases, venues book a year out and may only have a limited amount of dates for you to pick from. You want to be open to finding your dream venue and securing a date within a season that you love!

Factors to consider when choosing a season:

  • Weather
  • Flowers in season
  • Outdoor or Indoor
  • Seasons that you love together
  1. Decide on a budget

Budget is always a hard topic. There are a lot of factors to consider when choosing your budget. The biggest factor to consider, by far, is the funding (who is paying for the wedding?) We suggest that you ask these hard questions first so that you have a realistic budget when you start planning. Whatever your budget is your wedding is going to be absolutely amazing!

Factors to consider when deciding upon a budget:

  • Who is paying for the wedding?
  • Will there be financial support for some portion of the wedding?
  • How much do you really want to spend?
  • How much can you comfortably afford?
  1. What type of wedding would you like to have?

Gone is the day of traditions, and we are not mad about it!! There are tons of ways to tie the knot now, and like everything else, this should perfectly fit your style.

Types of weddings

  • Elopements
  • Intimate Weddings
  • Traditional Weddings
  • Outdoor Wedding
  • Themed Wedding
  1. Pick a theme

This day is a reflection of you, your relationship and your personal style! Consider what story you would like to tell on your day and choose a theme. Themes could be something as simple as “rustic,” or you can have a more in-depth theme such as “Game of Thrones,” whatever it is, make sure it represents you!

Theme examples:

  • Greenery
  • Rustic
  • Glam
  • Shabby Chic
  • Bookworm
  • Harry Potter

The stars are the limit!!

  1. Choose your venue

Your venue is setting the stage for your entire day. You’ll want to look at venues that work within your budget, theme and season. We encourage you to look at multiple venues, in person, before choosing the right one for your big day!

Venues to think about:

  • Vineyards
  • Breweries
  • Parks
  • Urban
  • Barns
  1. Pick your perfect wedding team

Your wedding team (photographer, videographer, planner, florist, etc.) are crucial to making your day flow seamlessly. You want to ensure that each of your vendors has as much invested in your wedding day as you do, that you are not just a number. To do this, we recommend interviewing up to three in each category on the phone or in person and hiring the one that you click with!

Check out our highly preferred vendor list by clicking here.

  1. Find your “yes person” for the day of

Now this person may not always say yes. However, they should know your vision as well as you do. On the day of you want to be sipping mimosas and dreaming about walking down the aisle, not answering a billion questions. A yes person will be there to answer those questions for you so that you can enjoy.


  • Mom(s)
  • Maid of Honor
  • Best Friend
  • Aunt(s)
  • Your planning partner!
  1. Set up takes longer than expected

Setting up wedding decor is no simple task, and you do not want to be caught off guard on the day of with things still left to do! Our team requires six hours to set ceremony and reception decor on the day of (anywhere from 2-10 people total.) A good rule of thumb is to plan for a bit of extra time on the day of for set up and to have someone else run the show. This is a great task for a family member that is wanting to help or your day of coordinator (since they are paid to help!)

  1. This day is about you two and only you!

This is the day you have been planning for, for probably most of your life. Your family has probably been planning for just as long and WILL have opinions, which is awesome. However, it is YOUR day. This day should be all about you as a couple, and you definitely should feel good making executive decisions based on that.  You’ve got this!!

Happy planning!   The Kindred Spirits Planning & Design Team

For more info on this topic contact Jess at  (971) 267-3638 |

2018 Annual Event Recap

Photo Credit:  Rose Adele Photography

On Wednesday, December 12, 2018, the Wilsonville Area Chamber of Commerce hosted our 2018 Annual Meeting at the Al Kadar Shriners Center and attracted over 130 Chamber attendees.  The event was sponsored by Kindred Spirits Planning & Design, Prographics Services, Inc., Pacific Connections, Poppies, and Paisley Floral, and Rose Adele Photography.

This year’s theme – “A Taste of Wilsonville” where 12 Wilsonville bakeries, caterers and restaurants shared their delectable food by offering guests the opportunity to sample their cuisine and learn more about their menus and offerings.  Participating in the tastings were the Corner Coffee Shop, Holiday Inn South, Izumi Japanese Steakhouse, Lux Sucre Desserts, Panera Bread, Qdoba Wilsonville, Rêver Artisan Bakery, Shari’s Pie & Café, Swire Coca-Cola, Tom’s Wilsonville Catering and Week Day Wine Club.

Chamber Board president Kevin O’Malley conducted the business meeting and shared recaps and highlights from our year, and Santa (AKA George Crace, The Total Development Center) stopped by to wish everyone a joyful holiday season!

Several outstanding Chamber leaders were recognized for their leadership, partnership and innovation as the 2018-2019 new Board of Directors President, Jason Jordan of Republic Services was sworn in and four outstanding Chamber leaders were recognized. Congratulations to our award winners and thank Outgoing Board President, Kyle Bunch of American Family Insurance for your two years of dedicated service to the Chamber!

  • Outgoing Board President – Kyle Bunch, American Family
  • Incoming New Board President – Jason Jordan, Republic Services
  • President’s Award – Donna Atkinson, Wilsonville Community Seniors, Inc.
  • Outstanding Service to WACC – Barb Eave, Barbara Eave Bookkeeping
  • Ambassador of the Year – Dr. Ryan McCormic, Next Level Chiropractic

A special thanks to our Board of Directors and Chamber Ambassador Team, many of whom were in attendance, for their continued support of the Chamber.

On behalf of the entire staff of the Chamber, we thank you, the business community for your support of not just this event, but the mission of the Chamber. Without you, we could not be… Building Business. Building Community.

Photo Credit: @Roseadelephotography

Cold? Flu? What should you do?

Guest Blog Contributed by Chamber Member Dr. April Voves, Naturopathic Primary Care Physician at West Chiropractic & Wellness.


Cold? Flu? What should you do?

It is that time of year again, pull out those sweaters and scarfs the air is cool and crisp, the leaves are changing…and snot, sneezes, and coughs are everywhere! Cold and flu season is among us. What can you do about it? Arm yourself with this educational information on cold and flu season so you can stay healthy this season.

The Common Cold

The common cold is well, common, the most frequent illness in the industrialized world in fact! Typically, adults will have two or three colds a year (keep reading for tips on how to stay healthy!). Most colds are spread through the hands either via shaking a contaminated hand or touching a surface with germs. Cold causing viruses can survive for about two hours on human skin. Gross! They can also be spread through droplets from coughing or sneezing. Like I tell my kids, please use your cough corner!

There are over 200 different types of viruses that are responsible for those runny and congested noses, sore throats, coughs, and fatigue. Colds usually persist for three to ten days but can last for two weeks. Since the cold is caused by a virus, antibiotics are not helpful and may leave you with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and a serious gut infection. Yuck! Immune boosting vitamins, herbs, and teas can help you recover quicker. Talk with your local naturopathic physician (such as me!) to see if these treatment options are safe for you.

Common Myth: Green or yellow snot (nasal discharge) = bacterial cause.

The Facts: Colored discharge is a normal phase of an uncomplicated cold due to a viral infection.

You are most contagious for the first three days of illness and your co-workers will thank you if you take advantage of Oregon’s Paid Sick Leave Policy and use the time to rest and recover.

The common cold rarely causes complications but it may lead to a sinus infection, worsening asthma, lung infection, or an ear infection. If you are concerned about your health, always seek professional medical help. And, no WebMD does not count!

Influenza AKA the Flu

If you feel like you have been hit by a bus, you might have the flu! Influenza characteristically begins ABRUPTLY with fever, headache, body aches, fatigue followed by a cough, sore throat, and runny nose. Similar to the common cold, the flu is spread through droplets from coughing or sneezing.

Common Myth: Vomiting and diarrhea = flu or that a “stomach bug” is the flu.

The Facts: While vomiting and diarrhea can occur with the flu (more often in children), typically the flu causes fever, cough, body aches, runny nose, and/or congestion.

The flu, like the common cold, is a virus and therefore antibiotics will not treat the flu. However, there are antiviral medications, that may be helpful. These medications are typically reserved for populations that are at high risk of developing serious complications from the flu and work best if started within 48 hours of symptom onset.

There are many factors that go into deciding if antiviral medications are the safest and most effective treatment option for you. Often, my patients are desperate for anything to make them feel better or avoid getting sick (I get it, the flu sucks!) but these medications are not without side effects. Antivirals can cause nausea, vomiting, and headaches and may only shorten the course of the flu by a few hours. Speak with a trusted medical professional to find out what is right for you.

Most people recover from the flu in a few days to two weeks. But it is important to note that the flu can cause a whole slew of complications including possible death, but most commonly pneumonia. Therefore, it is important to see a doctor if your symptoms are not improving or worsening.

Rest is best! It is particularly important to stay home from school or work if you have the flu. You are most contagious for the first five days but can continue to spread the virus for up to ten days. You should wait at least 24 hours after your fever has resolved before returning to work or school or until you are feeling well enough to learn and be a productive employee.

Common Myth: The flu vaccine will give you the flu.

The Facts: This simply isn’t true!

The single best thing you can do to prevent the flu (aside from living in isolation for winter) is to get your flu vaccine! The flu vaccine saves lives! Last year, 80,000 people died from complications of influenza virus, most were not vaccinated. Even if you still end up getting the flu after being vaccinated it is usually less severe. Getting your flu vaccine can help keep you alive and healthy so you don’t miss work and most importantly, can attend all those holiday parties!


Here are some tips to keep you healthy this winter season:

  • Fist bump instead of handshaking? Remember, some viruses can survive on the human skin for two hours.
  • Scrub a dub dub! Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub. Wash your hands after using the bathroom (duh!), blowing your nose, handling trash, touching animals, and prior to touching food.
  • Good Nutrition! Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and drink plenty of water.
  • Sleep! Sleep is the body’s time to repair and rejuvenate itself. Aim for 7-8 hours per night, much more for children!
  • Move your body! Exercise helps with anxiety, stress, and getting a restful night’s sleep. All important for illness prevention.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Germs spread this way. Try wearing a motorcycle helmet if you can’t keep your hands off your face.
  • Vitamin C 1000mg once per day. If loose stools occur, decrease dosage.


If there was a cure for the common cold, someone would be very wealthy! Until then, here are some steps you can take to recover more quickly.

  • Get plenty of rest! Seriously, stop and rest! I know, no one has time to be sick, but you will recover quicker if you allow yourself to rest. (Plus, it’s a great excuse to binge on that latest show).
  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  • Eat light meals during illness. Give your digestive tract a break and use that energy to fight off the illness.
  • Zinc supplementation. Aim for 30-50mg once per day for no more than 10 days.
  • Elderberry Syrup 5ml (1 teaspoon) three to four times per day for 5 days.

Zinc, elderberry syrup, and vitamin C are generally safe for most adults but consult your physician if you are unsure, pregnant or nursing, or considering giving to a child.

There are many other herbs and supplements that can help prevent or treat colds and the flu, but it is best to consult your local naturopathic physician and discuss the risks and benefits as they pertain to your health. There are many over the counter (OTC) medications that can ease your symptoms, but these should be used for the shortest duration possible to limit unwanted side effects.

It can be tricky to figure out exactly what is going on, if you are unsure about what to do or have questions, it is always best to seek the care of a medical professional.

Remember, stay hydrated, keep your hands clean, rest, and get your flu vaccine!

For more information on this topic, contact Dr. April of West Chiropractic & Wellness.
Phone: (503) 628-9082| email:| website:


November is National Diabetes Month – Don’t Turn a Blind Eye to Diabetes

Don’t Turn a Blind Eye to Diabetes

The disease’s impact on the eyes comes into focus during National Diabetes Awareness Month

Guest Blog Contributed by Chamber Member Oregon Eye Specialists

National Diabetes Awareness Month, a countrywide initiative to bring attention to the prevention and impact of the prevalent, dangerous affliction, begins November 1, 2018.

November is truly beautiful to behold. Vibrant fall foliage paints the trees but seeing friends and family during the holidays is an even more welcome sight. Taking in the eager, smiling faces set around a magnificent Thanksgiving dinner creates memories that last a lifetime. Vision is something we all take for granted. As the turkey is carved and thanks are shared, it’s also a good time to think about a disease that affects more than 30 million Americans and unbeknownst to many, can lead to blindness.

Education is crucial to understanding and fighting the illness. Insulin is a hormone that regulates the levels of glucose, an essential energy source, in the bloodstream. Type 2 diabetes often develops gradually, when the body produces too little insulin or is resistant to its effects. Type 1 means the pancreas doesn’t create any insulin at all, usually hitting harder and earlier in life.  However, both result in critically high blood sugar, which can have disastrous consequences on vital organs, including the eyes.

Dr. Dinelli Monson, M.D. is an ophthalmologist at Oregon Eye Specialists with over 10 years of practicing experience treating patients with diabetes and other ocular diseases. “The retina is an amazing, transparent structure that processes light and allows us to see,” she says. “Just like any other tissue in the body, it’s nourished by blood vessels. So, if we have high levels of sugar in the body, it can cause damage to the blood vessels in the retina, and then the retina stops functioning well.”

This impairment, known as diabetic retinopathy, can manifest in several ways, each limiting a person’s ability to see. One involves the leaking of blood products into the eye, causing swelling known as macular edema. Other times, blood is unable to flow through the vessels, like faulty pipes, leading to ischemia, and ultimately dying tissue. Sometimes, to compensate for insufficiencies, new blood vessels can grow in places they shouldn’t, disrupting the natural anatomy of the eye. Secondary complications are a possibility too. “Cataracts tend to develop at an earlier age in diabetics, and they have nearly double the risk of glaucoma,” explains Monson.

What makes diabetic retinopathy such a threat is that nearly one in four people living with diabetes don’t know that they have the disease, and about 90 percent of pre-diabetics are unaware of their condition. “Early retinopathy is often silent, which is the danger. Later in the disease symptoms could present as blurry vision, dark spots, or difficulty adjusting when you look at things from far away to near,” Monson says. “Colors can be faded. Sometimes, if there’s a bleed inside, people can notice increased floaters in their eyes.”

Early detection, timely treatment, and appropriate follow-ups are the most effective tools in keeping diabetic retinopathy in check. It all starts with scheduling regular eye exams. Doctors will test vision, the pressure inside the eye and dilate the pupils with drops. “That’s when we shine our lights and use our lenses to magnify the inner lining of the eye so that we can take a good look,” Monson says. Taking photos can also help specialists track the progression or decline of health over time. “One thing that is very important to emphasize to our patients is to actually get the rest of their body’s glucose under control.”

For mid to late-stage patients, there are medications that can be injected into the eyes, and surgical measures can be utilized for advanced symptoms. Laser photocoagulation is a minimally invasive procedure that seals leaking blood vessels or retinal tears and can destroy abnormal tissues. To repair extensive internal damage, a vitrectomy, where some of the vitreous humor is removed from the eye, is also an option.

“I want to emphasize that there’s always an opportunity to improve our health, for all of us,” says Monson. “That being said, although it sounds very scary to many people to not have good vision, there are so many people who have no sight that have very happy, productive lives.” From low vision specialists, rehabilitation services to guide dogs, there are many resources available. The Oregon Commission for the Blind offers low vision devices, free consultations and can also assist with transitioning at school or work. The State Library of Oregon has a selection of Braille and large print books and the American Academy of Ophthalmology will advocate for patients.

Though there still is no cure for diabetes, medical innovations have made living with the disease possible. For those who are recently diagnosed, especially with type 2, Dr. Monson suggests getting your eyes checked immediately – it’s possible you’ve had it for a while and not known – and annually from then on. It’s a simple step to take to help ensure you’ll be able to appreciate those friendly faces for years to come.

For more information on this topic, contact Oregon Eye Specialist |