Author Archives: Joëlle Dussuyer

I know it’s not fancy to talk about the movement but I encounter so many patients who have constipation. One of the best ways to detox the liver is to have good digestion, and more specifically good bowel movements. What does a good bowel movement look like? At least once a day in the morning.

Digestion is a super complex system that starts in your mouth with digestive enzymes, continues in the stomach with more diverse digestive enzymes, and then continues with the bile secretion which is where we connect with liver health. More on the lower part of the digestive system later.

The best way to have a good lower digestive tract is to cultivate a healthy upper digestive tract. What’s the easiest way to do this? It is essential to have a warm breakfast in the morning with some volume (fibers) in it. The morning is the time where the large intestine is at its highest point of efficiency as described In Chinese medicine. So we need to use that time to give it the best chance.

I personally fought the concept of having oatmeal in the morning because I was hard-core about promoting as grain-free of a diet as possible. But even I have learned the value of a simple bowl of oatmeal. Why is oatmeal good for constipation? Oatmeal contains a good amount of insoluble fiber that further aids the smooth digestion process. The fiber content also aids bowel movements and soaks water from the fluids you drink. All this results in the smooth removal of stool through the colon.

Here is a recipe that will work 90% percent of the time on the most resistant constipation.

Joelle’s Steel Cut Oatmeal

For the Oatmeal:
  • Steelcut Oats Just shy of 1/3 cup
  • Chia Seeds 1 Large Tablespoon
  • Raisins 1 Handful
  • Water 1 2/3 Cups

Add all ingredients to a pot and bring to a boil. Stir often so that oatmeal doesn’t stick to the pan. You can add more water as necessary if it is too thick. Cook for 10 minutes.

To Serve:

Pour cooked oatmeal on top of about 8 1/2 crushed walnuts, plus 3 chopped Brazil nuts( these provide you with selenium for thyroid support). and 4 or 5 cut strawberries or 10 raspberries and finally 1 or two tablespoons of yogurt.

Learn more:

3000 year old thoughts on digestion

Why is digestion important?

Your digestive system and how it works?

Your gut feeling: A healthier digestive system means a healthier you

Did you know? The liver can impact your emotions.

The liver and the gallbladder work together. Once your liver is cleaner, the paired organ gallbladder has an easier time secreting bile, which is a very important substance to regulate digestive function.

A cleaner liver allows you to have more balanced emotions. It will allow you to not ‘be stuck’ emotionally. It helps you have just the right amount of anger to keep things moving, without being aggressive.

Consequently, the gallbladder will be happier and you’ll be able to make decisions more easily.

How do I help keep my liver clean?

I love Livco*. I recommend it as part of my detox/ cleanse program. I will take a couple if I have a glass of wine to protect my liver. It’s super effective in reducing high enzymes and in cases of hemochromatosis. Recently, I added it to my vaccination protocol. Order Now

Does it matter when I detox/ cleanse my liver?

Springtime is the best time to pay attention to your liver needs. The cleaner your liver is in the springtime, the better for you the rest of the year. This gives your liver more time for a strong renewal, and its ability to plant seeds for changes in one’s life.

Are other organs connected to emotions?

In traditional Chinese medicine emotions and physical health are connected. This integrated mind-body approach to health and healing operates in a loop where emotions impact the health of the body and vice versa.

Traditional Chinese medicine narrows down emotions to five basic feelings that are each associated with an organ in the body

  • Anger is associated with the liver.
  • Fear is associated with the kidney.
  • Joy is associated with the heart.
  • Sadness and grief are associated with the lung.
  • Worry is associated with the spleen.

Contact me for a consultation to learn how acupuncture and clincial nutrition can help.

Emotion & Organ Connection










*Contraindications for Livco -do not use if you are pregnant, lactating, or on certain drugs like HIV meds. If you have more questions, please contact me.

Want to learn more?
How Emotions and Organs Are Connected in Traditional Chinese Medicine
Anger and TCM

Acupuncture for Repetitive Strain Injury

Repetitive Strain Injury covers a whole range of problems caused by the overuse of any part of the body. Frozen shoulder, tendonitis, and carpal tunnel syndrome are examples of RSI’s. Repetitive strain injuries can leave you with pain, numbness, or tingling in the affected area. There may also be loss of function, strength, or movement.

In the last year, there has been an increase in repetitive strain injuries due to the number of people working from home. Most of us do not have at-home desk setups that are ergonomically correct. We sit more and spend more time than ever in front of computers and laptops. 

Acupuncture is often used to treat pain. Acupuncture works by moving the qi and blood in the surrounding area. By increasing the blood flow, it can help reduce inflammation and pain. Acupuncture is generally used more than herbal medicine for the effective treatment of repetitive strain injury.

What are the most common forms of Repetitive Strain Injury?

Some of the most common forms of RSI include:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome, which affects the median nerve in the wrist.
  • Tendonitis in the wrist and hand.
  • Tendinosis.
  • Tenosynovitis, which affects the membrane surrounding a tendon.
  • Bursitis in the wrist, knee, elbow, or shoulder.
  • Tennis elbow
  • Trigger finger or trigger thumb
  • Frozen shoulder

What causes Repetitive Strain Injury?

The cause of RSI lies in repetitive microscopic trauma that occurs due to strain on the muscles and joints that can be caused by:

  • Small, frequent movements
  • Vigorous movements containing a lot of force
  • A lack of movement, such as holding a limb in an unnatural position

Examples of activities that can cause repetitive strain injuries include:

  • Carpal Tunnel – repetitive hand motions, awkward hand positions, or strong ripping
  • Tennis Elbow – the tendons in your elbow are overloaded, usually caused by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm
  • Trigger Finger -your fingers gets stuck in a bent position,  usually caused by repetitive gripping actions 
  • Bursitis – repetitive motions or positions that put pressure on the bursae around a joint such as lifting something over your head repeatedly or leaning on your elbows for long periods
  • Stretching and twisting, such as when painting or cleaning
  • Lifting heavy loads, such as boxes or building materials
  • Performing the same action repeatedly
  • Holding limbs without support, such as typing with no wrist support
  • Sitting in a cramped position for extended periods of time

Some of these activities can also cause pain in other parts of the body, such as the back.

How does acupuncture help?

Acupuncture works by moving the qi and blood in the surrounding area. By increasing the blood flow, it can help reduce inflammation and pain. We can help!

More information on Repetitive Strain Injury:

Research Finds Acupuncture Effective for Chronic Pain

The Role of Acupuncture in Treating Chronic Pain

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Repetitive motion injuries during COVID-19

Should I Worry About… working from home causing repetitive stress injury?

Let’s Talk about the Covid19 Vaccine

Learn how to minimize your side effects and boost your immune system

My experience.

I was grateful to be able to receive the Covid19 Pfizer vaccines and wanted to share some of my experiences with you. I was actually apprehensive and excited at the same time.

I once had an extreme allergic reaction to an injection and some of my family members have also had negative reactions to other vaccines. In this case, the benefits of the vaccine far outweighed the risks of COVID for myself and others. I got the shot as soon as I was allowed.

I followed two protocols to minimize the side effects of the Covid19 vaccine by:

  • Supporting the immune systems’ response to vaccination
  • Promoting Liver detoxification

I did really fantastic! The only side effect I had was a slightly sore arm from the shots. I attribute this to the supplements protocol that I took.

Minimize side effects and boost your immune system.

I have since prescribed the protocol to at least 25 people who got the Covid19 vaccine and everyone did very well. Only one person had a fever for less than a day. (She is vegetarian and could not take one of the important supplements.) I am very excited about this and will share more details soon.

Using supplements, you can minimize side effects, boost your immune system and limit any downtime.

Covid19 Vaccination Client testimonials.

“My husband and I are both benefiting from Joelle’s vaccination support protocol. We ran out of one item and quickly became quite tired; my husband took a three-hour ‘nap’ two days after we ran out. Once we were back on the protocol all was well. I highly recommend this supportive herbal treatment!” 

“I am an 85-year-old woman with autoimmune arthritis and a suppressed immune system.  I am so happy to have had Joelle’s advice on minimizing COVID vaccine side effects.  I followed the full comprehensive protocol and did very well after both of my Moderna vaccinations.  My only symptom was redness at the injection site that lasted a day or so following the second dose.  I know of many who had side effects (some that have lasted weeks) and am so happy that it went so well.  Thank you Joelle!”

“I am an 87-year-old man who was caught by surprise with GI symptoms and fatigue after my first Moderna vaccine.  I was able to follow Joelle’s comprehensive protocol for the second dose and did not have any side effects at all.  Thank you for your expertise Joelle!”

I have worked with Joelle for years after a flu vaccine-related injury and was quite nervous about getting the COVID vaccine.  I knew that I wanted to get it for myself and others but felt especially vulnerable.  The comprehensive protocol helped me to feel confident and well supported!  And I had no trouble other than some mild soreness at the injection site with the first dose and feel good going into the second dose next week.  Thank you so much Joelle for giving me these tools to help me and my family!”

Learn more about limiting Covid19 vaccine side effects.

A lot of people really need and want the vaccine but have concerns about their reaction. While it is true that many people do not have much of a reaction to the vaccine, there are others who do.

Many people are concerned because they have underlying conditions with a weak immune system. Others because they had COVID in the past and are uncertain whether one or two shots is the right approach and/or worry that they will have a stronger reaction than other people to the vaccine.

Please text me at 415-385-4141 if you want to pick up a pre-made pack from my office or if you want me to send one to your friends or family. 

More information on the Covid19 Vaccine:
Different COVID-19 Vaccines | CDC


Who doesn’t love curry? Indian curry? Thai curry? Burmese? The beauty of curry lies not in its intoxicating aroma, its vibrant color or its satiating, silky texture. The true elegance resides in its rejuvenating properties from the number of healing spices used to create the bold and deep flavor.

Short of eating spices like turmeric, curry, cardamom, cumin, ginger and holy basil every day, I highly recommend taking a supplement like Boswellia or Vitanox from MediHerbs. Fantastic supplement for an active, independent lifestyle. 💪  (Call me to order some for yourself or your family members (UPS 8.50)).

This recipe makes 8 servings (& is 100% Paleo consistent.) We ate two soup bowls of it (each) — and there is enough for at least four more bowls! So flavorful. So nourishing. (It’s even better reheated, so make the full recipe below and you’ll thank me as you’re enjoying the leftovers…)

Chicken Curry
3 green zucchinis
2 crookneck squash
4 carrots
40 green beans (2 handfuls)
2 chicken breasts cubed
16 oz chicken broth or chicken bone broth
homemade coconut milk (double the recipe below)
zest of half a lime
2 tbsp olive oil

1 table spoon of Sumac
2 dry leaves of green lime
1 stick of cinnamon
3 cloves
1 stalk of lemon grass slightly prechopped
1 large piece of ginger (peeled)
2 pieces fresh tumeric (peeled)
1 clove of garlic
1 small shallot
a handful of basil

  • Chop veggies in 2 inch cubes and cut green beans in thirds.
  • Saute in olive oil and salt to taste. Be careful not to overcook.
  • Pour into the coconut milk and add two large tablespoons of curry powder (for fresh spices in bulk, I highly recommend the @rainbow_grocery bulk section). Make a paste in a small food processor with the remaining spices listed above, lime zest and olive oil.
  • Add the paste to the coconut milk mixture, simmer for ten minutes.
  • Add the veggies and bring to simmer.
  • At last add two breasts of cubed chicken and simmer for 5 minutes. (Careful not to overcook/dry out the chicken.)

Top with lime juice and cilantro. Voila! Bon apetit!

Homemade Coconut Milk

  • Add 1c unsweetened @coconut flakes to 2c water in your blender.
  • Turn on high for 3 minutes.
  • Pour liquid into a cheesecloth or strainer bag and squeeze the pulp.
  • Discard the pulp (or make coconut flour with it) and you’re done. (Use a 1.5c coconut to 3c water ratio for a creamier result.)
To everyone who is about to ‘finish’ (or has finished) the Standard Process 21 Day Cleanse or the Whole 30 Program, I want to first and foremost congratulate you. Well done!

These congratulations are not, however, for merely doing the program. Instead, they are compliments for making a commitment to your health. Fortunately for all of us, the journey begins with the Standard Process Cleanse, or any other program you might have completed, but extends beyond these three weeks.

The next steps are important to continuing this commitment to your health. Many call this phase the ‘reintroduction phase’. During the next few weeks, you will begin to add back the foods that you eliminated during your cleanse. You might have even added a few back already! Maybe you celebrated this morning with a bacon and pancake brunch extravaganza! But a word of caution about this…

By doing the cleanse program, we tried to create a situation in which we can observe how the foods we eat might contribute to some of our symptoms. Some foods might simply be preventing us from feeling our best. Eliminating foods to ‘restart’ our system, gives us the perfect opportunity to make these observations.

When you’re reintroducing food groups back into your diet, it’s critical to add each food back, one at a time, in small amounts, so that you may observe how they make you feel. You may find that foods you have eaten for years cause bloating, pimples or even headaches. You may also find that food combinations are bothersome to your digestive system. By introducing each food or food group one by one, you can easily identify which foods are causing duress. If you introduce too many at once, you may find yourself feeling unwell – and you will be unable to pinpoint which food caused the issue.

I would love my clients to share with me how their experience has been thus far, via email. With these insights, I can make a recommendation for a more personalized program for the next step in their wellness journey. First and foremost, it’s most important to make note what has improved, or not. Maintaining a food journal during the reintroduction phase will be helpful in keeping track of what foods cause symptoms, and which do not. It’s best to make note of: difference in digestion (subtle or dramatic), sleep, mood, skin, join pain, etc.

In the link below Melissa Hartwig from the Whole30 Program, writes a detailed description of what she coins “Reintro 101”. There is a fast-track plan and a Slow-Roll plan, each outlined with Pros and Cons. I encourage you all to take a look, so that you can feel empowered to reintroduce foods back into your diet, while still maintaining optimal health – for your physical and mental well-being.

Whole 30 Reintroduction

Most of the food we cook in our home are “belly friendly”, designed for people who have some digestive challenges.

For many of our recipes, one can add garlic and onions (for example in the recipes listed below). It will be more tasty and these two ingredients are good for your health.
I find in my practice that people might eat onion and garlic because they are regarded as very healthy, which is true, but they might not work for everyone. If you have chronic discomfort like bloating in your gut, try to avoid them, or compromise by using in very small amounts: one clove of garlic for the entire rack of lamb, for example (at least until we figure out how to strengthen your digestive system).

Instead, we try to use a variety of spices to enrich flavor and compliment ingredients. Some might think that without garlic and onions, our options are somewhat reduced. However, there are a plethora of herbs and spices, when used in combinations, can give the same satisfying flavors that garlic and onions can impart in recipes. Last night we used plenty of rosemary. This was not only a good marriage of flavor with the lamb, but also rosemary is an excellent source of anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties.

We had two white veggies tonight, which did not yield the greatest color combo for a visually and aesthetically appealing meal. We added our leftover carrot soup to the white cauliflower soup for two reasons: (1) for a zing! of orange and (2) to finish the leftovers. It’s important to have a variety of colors in your plate, both for visual enjoyment and for meridian balancing (more on that soon!)


Cauliflower Soup

Wash and cut cauliflower in to small pieces
Place in pot and cover with chicken stock
Boil until cauliflower is soft
Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth
Add 1 Tablespoon of butter
Season with salt and pepper
For added flavor you can also saute onion and garlic and add it to the pot before cooking the cauliflower

Sauteed Celery Root

Peel celery root and clean thoroughly
Cut into pieces about the size of French fries
Boil in salted water until semi soft, about 10 minutes
Drain and sauce in butter or olive oil

Crown Lamb Chops

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Pat meat dry
Season with salt and pepper
Place meat fat side down in frying pan and brown (about 10 minutes)
Mince one clove of garlic and spread over fat side of meat
chop 2 tablespoons of rosemary and sprinkle over meat
Place in oven and cook 20 minutes for rare, 135 degrees, 25 minutes medium rare, 140 degrees etc.

Cauliflower SoupRoasted Lamb with Celery Root

Dinner Day 19 on cleanse


Life can get hectic around the holidays and in light of recent events, we could all use a little more tender, love and care. Cooking a healthy meal may not top your to-do list every night, but in under twenty minutes, you can have a hot, nourishing bowl of stew each night…or each morning.

With a small amount of prep, you can make sufficient soup to last you at least half the week. This recipe is so delicious, in fact, that I’ve made it three Sundays in a row. Not to mention, it’s highly customizeable to suit your taste. I am planning to do it once a week for the entire winter. You can replace/alternate the Oxtail, short ribs or shank with a whole chicken.

Nutritionally, it is hard to match. You end up with an “all in one” dish coverage essential nutritional needs.

I will mention only a few

  • Bone broth with all the great mineral content
  • Highly digestible protein
  • Great amount of gelatin/collagen which is really hard to find any other way: fantastic for hair, nails, skin, joints and for repairing the digestive tract
  • Healthy saturated fat which will feed your nervous system/brain. (Fats may have had a bad rap before, but they’re truly good for you! DO NOT SKIM the fat off this dish!)

The combo protein/fat is so satisfactory, it will also curb your sweet tooth for the holidays.

What could you be waiting for?

Enjoy and be well.

Recipe: Oxtail Soup

1 1/2 lbs of short ribs or shank*
(ONLY use grass fed organic)
3 lbs oxtail*
(ONLY grass fed organic)
1 spoon of apple cider vinegar.
3 turnips
1 rutabaga
2 parsnips
5 carrots
3 celery stalks
*organic, grass-fed
1/2 butternut squash
2 shallots
sea salt
Herbs de Provence

Brown meat and tail in olive oil with thyme and shallots (about 20 minutes).  While meat is browning, chop all vegetables into bite-size chunks.  Place veggies and meat in large pot and fill with salted water.  Add more thyme and grated ginger and Herbs de Provence (several tablespoons of each).  Bring to a boil and then turn down to simmer for 8-15 hours.  Remove all bones and thyme sprigs.  Serve with fresh parsley and sliced avocado.

I put mine in mason jars one per day. I make sure there are pretty even amount of meat, veggies and fat in each.


If you have the stamina to keep chopping once your pot is simmering on the stove, below are some great fresh additions to throw in the pot when reheating for meals. You can always chop an entire bunch of cilantro, green onions, etc and save in containers in the refrigerator. When you reheat the soup, add a handful and you’re good to go. Adding fresh veggies can make it feel like you’re eating a new soup each night!

  • Cilantro
  • Italian parsley
  • Green Onions
  • Fresh Ginger – thinly sliced with a mandolin
  • Grated Carrots
  • Chard or Kale – chopped in small pieces

Adding additional herbs can have medicinal effects as well. Suffering from inflammation? Add a pinch of turmeric and black pepper — the turmeric is great for inflammation and when paired with black pepper, it’s more readily absorbed into the body. Feel like a cold might be coming on? Add 1 tsp holy basil or Tulsi. Known as the sacred basil, Tulsi is great for respiratory issues and some even believe it to boost energy. You can also increase amount of ginger in the broth if you’re suffering from gastrointestinal issues.

Bon appetit.

PS: Let me know if you made it and liked it 🙂


img_1131OxtailOxtail SimmeringChopped VeggiesSimmering SoupBone Broth