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Natural Awakenings Tampa Florida

Letter From the Publisher

As always, I’ve approached the composition of this Bay Area issue of Natural Awakenings in joyful anticipation of the inspiration it will surely offer to our many readers in terms of wellness in body, mind and spirit.

Sadly, at the same time I am processing the recent passing of my beloved pet, Tai, who was with me for a decade-and-a-half. Tai’s sweet canine buddy Chi is still with me and we are grieving this loss together (Chi has been clinging to me like velcro). As most any pet owner can testify, the loss of a pet can be as devastating as the death of a family member or close friend. The pain of divorce and other such broken human relationships seems to pale in comparison to what I am feeling now. I’m especially grateful for the folks at Medicine River Animal Hospital in Madeira Beach for caring for my beloved pet and helping me through this transition. Another compassionate source of support in this regard is Dr. Gayle Burrell’s Gentle Pet Passing, LLC whose compassionate home services can help enormously. The grief I feel will surely fade away, but my appreciation for Tai and the joy she gave will be with me forever.

Life goes on. This September 2012 issue will get to the printer and on to newsstands throughout our community on time, as always. Once again our readers will be inspired by the positive news and views within. That for me is a comforting thought.

Writer Judith Fertig’s article "Exploring Our Creative Side" (page 28) is an especially encouraging read. Fertig offers compelling insight on ways people of all ages and skills are experiencing joyous personal growth through the arts. I know the Bay Area is teeming with people finding exciting ways to do just that. One good way to get engaged locally is to visit It’s a great organizing vehicle for finding and/or creating group activities with like minded people. Just fill in your particular interest and location, and voilá, you’re on your way.

Our Healing Ways feature offers information on the newly emerging field of "Functional Medicine" (page 38), an approach to healing designed to identify underlying causes of illness and to carry out effective treatment. It’s a promising advance that includes a healthy focus on the roles diet, nutrition, and exposure to environmental toxins play in our search for long term wellness. This month’s Conscious Eating feature (page 42) offers expert insights on the potential drawbacks of a wheat-dominated diet. Writer Lee Walker interviews Dr. William Davis, author of Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight and Find Your Path Back to Health. This article is a real eye opener whether you suspect wheat products might be a problem for you or not.

As always, open your mind and read on.