Column: Interactions among nutrients, drugs and medicinal herbs are complex

It’s common to turn to nutritional supplements, drugs and herbs to try to boost health. All of these options can be beneficial when used appropriately, but they all come with potential risks as well. Misusing or neglecting to check interactions between nutrients, drugs and herbs can cause irreversible health issues — even death.

Wealth of Health: Optimize your wellness in a post-pandemic world

COVID-19 case rates continue to taper, restrictions are being lifted and tourists are returning in droves. Roughly $4 trillion in rescue funds has been injected into the economy with as much again on the table for the American Jobs Plan and the American Families Plan. As we face challenges of the new normal, how do we optimize health at a personal, social, environmental and economic level?

Column: COVID-19 vaccination is a gesture of unity

The spirit of unity is essential to the way forward, not only on the islands, but for the global community. On this point, getting our COVID vaccinations is akin to doing our part for climate change.

Column: Mom was very independent until falling victim to COVID

My mom just passed away. I’d been caring for her around the clock in home hospice for close to a month. Three weeks before I arrived, she was discharged from the hospital following a two-week stay for COVID. Although her death certificate says that she died from cardio-pulmonary arrest, she would almost certainly be here today if not for the COVID.

14th Annual  Hawaii Book & Music Festival

14th Annual Hawaii Book & Music Festival

Living Well at the Hawaii Book and Music Festival May 4-5


We continue to seek vibrant health and freedom from suffering for ourselves, our loved ones and our community.  Are you ready for another boost of inspiration? Again, this year, the Hawaii Book and Music Festival, offers two full days of dynamic panels in its Wellness track. Enjoy dynamic dialogues among prominent authors, community leaders, meditators, politicians, health providers,  entrepreneurs and medical researchers. Gain valuable insights and guidance during these 13 fascinating panels.


Saturday May 4


10am- Marijuana/Cannabis Gateway or Gatekeeper? Hawaii has recently legalized dispensaries for medical marijuana. What is the evidence behind medical use? What is the status of efforts to legalize recreational use in Hawaii? Is marijuana a gateway drug that leads to opiate use or a gatekeeper, guarding against more dangerous drugs reducing violent crime?

11am – Haumea: Transforming the Health of Hawaiian Women and Empowering Wahine Well-being. This OHA report seeks to provide a comprehensive wahine perspective on the historic role of wahine in the traditional era, and of wahine wellbeing today, including as many wahine voices as possible, including the contributors presenting the work at this panel.

Noon – Hawaii Homelessness Status Report: A panel led by Lt. Gov. Josh Green addresses our collective responsibility for solving the suffering of the Hawaii homeless. It is the result of health and wealth disparities, mental illness and drug addiction. What efforts are afoot and what is working?

1pm- Housing is Healthcare: Studies have shown that housing for the homeless lowers their healthcare costs. Might Hawaii offer an emerging model for the nation? Learn about a recent trip to DC by Dr. Josh Green, our Lieutenant Governor.

2pm- Sleep Apnea, Insomnia and Deprivation:  We spend one third of our time in pursuit of nourishing sleep, often to no avail. What is sleep apnea, how is it damaging and how can it be identified and managed? Does screen time drive insomnia? What happens when we undersleep because we overwork?

3pm Death with Dignity: Does death with dignity mean the black pill? What factors drove the new bill just promulgated? Are people taking advantage of it? Is it really necessary or are there better means to dying well? Can conscious dying be facilitated by palliative care, hospice and spiritual support?

4pm- Regenerative Medicine: Can we now turn back the clock on aging? How far have we come towards repairing damaged or aged tissues with stem cells? Will it be possible to avoid the need for so many joint replacements?


Sunday May 5


11am- Vaping – Health Impacts and Behavioral Trends:  Is vaping better than smoking tobacco? Does it still pose a cancer risk? It may help people to stop smoking — but does it also get them started? Is it healthier to vape marijuana than to smoke it?

Noon- Bruised by Social Media: You’ve captured an awesome moment. It goes viral, but – what? – thousands scoff, some begin to bully, a couple start to stalk. How do we prepare for a negative response or worse, or… no response at all to our precious post?

1pm- Teenage Depression and Suicide: Social media can bring us together as one, enable a global dialogue, isolate us or crush our spirit. In a world with increasing wealth disparities, we risk becoming isolated, disenfranchised and deflated.

2pm- Millennial Work/Life Balance: As the gig economy expands and the 8-5 job becomes less common, how do millennials find a healthy rhythm? Does this lifestyle engender an enhanced sense of freedom or a scattered, never-ending grind?|

3pm- Nutrition and Cancer: Certain foods increase specific cancer risks. Listen to the evidence from Cancer Center researchers and learn how simple dietary changes can help prevent cancer and enhance longevity.

4pm- Naturopathic Medicine in Modern Healthcare: As Hawaii approaches universal healthcare, naturopathic medicine is integral to disease prevention and optimal health. Naturopathic physicians contribute to lowering total costs and closing the gap on health disparities. Learn how these physicians are impacting care on the islands and their increasing insurance coverage. Gain insights on the treatment of digestive issues, women’s health, palliative cancer care and heavy metals.

The Hawaii Book and Music Festival draws as many as 20,000 participants each year. Check out the Wellness in Hawaii track as an opportunity for healing in paradise:




Hawai‘i Book & Music Festival

Wellness In Hawaii 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, Sunday May 4-5

Wellness Pavilion, Civic Grounds at Honolulu Hale

Free Admission, and free parking in municipal parking next to the site