overcoming the odds, sharing the wisdom
"dedicated to serving her patients"
DR. BRANDY ZACHARY, DC, AFMCp
How do you sum yourself up in a short paragraph that shares who you are, without revealing too much?
Well, forget guarding my heart, I'm just going to lay it on the line:
I know PAIN.
I know the suffering of physical injury and the heartache of a wounded psyche.
I know the frustration of doctors not providing answers. I know that being a busy, over-achiever doesn't make you feel loved. I know that telling someone to smile when they feel like they're dying inside should be outlawed.
I also know that there ARE answers, solutions and hope! You can feel healthy and happy - it's never too late.
Read more below about my personal journey & why I created Body Love Cafe.
Or click HERE to jump down to my "Education & Licenses" section.
"physician, heal thyself"
MY STORY continued...
I have struggled with sickness and injury my entire life.
Every time it happened I was at a total loss.
At the time, my sense of identity was tied into achievement. I would work hard, accumulate, win accolades and then "out of nowhere" everything would derail. I had never learned proper self-care. I didn't know how to recognize the early warning signs of illness and I was used to pushing myself and ignoring my body. There was always something else or someone else to take care of.
As if the major health issues weren't enough to face, I also faced a loss of self. I didn't know then, but having your sense of value and self-worth based on something outside of yourself is a prescription for disaster. You don't ever want to base "who you are" on something you can lose. (Click HERE to read more).
Some of the illnesses and injuries I have had to face in the past:
Chronic sinus infections lasting 6 weeks or more at a time, repeated tonsillitis up to 8x/year, Epstein-Barr virus (mono), various organ infections, allergies and anemia. I've been through the ringer with western medical treatment, endless courses of antibiotics and surgery. I was diagnosed with a primary immune disorder and prescribed immunoglobulins via IV. This meant a hospital visit every 3 weeks for the rest of my life...to the tune of $42,000+ for each visit. That's over $700,000 a year!
I was also in several car accidents that caused debilitating migraines, was unable to read for years, & experienced terrible depression as a result of the injury.
The proverbial "last straw" was struggling with weight issues, blood sugar dysregulation (pre-diabetes), hormonal adult acne, hypothyroidism, Candida, SIBO & gut health issues.
What can I say...something had to change! It was time to think differently about my body, my health, and my life. I had to heal the whole.
"Teacher, Teach Yourself"
MY STORY wrapped up...
The demanding and all-encompassing road to recovery is not to be underestimated - it sucks. I know, I've had to do it more than once...which didn't seem fair! But it meant I had the opportunity to learn a few things along the way.
I know that we each are in charge of our own health.
We need wise counsel. There is a place for traditional western, eastern, and alternative medicine in our lives. And yet, we are our own best advocate. No one knows the inside of you the way you do. You want to work with doctors who understand that and will listen to what you have to say.
Today, I enjoy a much healthier and happier life than I thought was possible. I have overcome and continue to heal many of my health issues from the past.
Self-care is an ongoing process, a commitment and a work of love.
"love your body. heal your mind. feed your soul."
how did i get better?
So, how did I get better? I give my Top 10 recommendations on the Video page.
The infuriating truth - it was slow and it wasn't just one thing.
Man, how I hated that!
I wanted one answer; a neon-flashing arrow sign. I wanted to point fingers and lay blame. I wanted a quick fix and I wanted someone else to rescue me.
That didn't happen.
No matter how much I wanted it, I found that the answer wasn't a straight line, but rather a series of overlapping circles.
The best way I can sum up the solution is that you choose to gift yourself with the kindest, most compassionate, loving care.
The kind of care that you always hoped you would get from someone else but
didn't - and what you so desperately deserve.
What does this kind of loving care look like? I call it Body Love.
"The infuriating truth - it was slow and
it wasn't just
Man, how I
Physically it means making good choices for your body. Quality nutrition, movement, rest. It means deciding when you need to see the doctor and when to say yes or no to that treatment, medication, diagnosis...it's your body and you are in charge.
Emotionally and spiritually it means embracing self-love, forgiveness, compassion, patience and letting go of criticism, guilt and shame. No small task for the modern woman in a demanding world.
"...the solution is that you choose
to gift yourself with the
kindest, most compassionate, loving care."
I created Body Love Cafe as a way to help others who are also on this journey and offer many of the services I have used myself over the years. I find that every "body" is unique and so each session is fully customized. I make some general recommendations on this website, but that's the point of the Menu - is to select what you specifically want and need.
Choose as little or as much as will best serve you. Take what you want and leave the rest. It's your choice.
In LOVE YOUR BODY it's all about the bodywork. Our practitioners want to soften, soothe & rearrange you! We have a wide variety of bodywork techniques to accomplish this including: chiropractic, massage, acupuncture, reposturing, physical therapy, hot or cold laser, PEMF biomat, cupping, pelvic floor therapy, active or passive stretching, cranial-sacral, trigger point release, fascia work, percussive instruments, traction, bracing or taping protocols, neuromuscular reeducation & more.
In HEAL YOUR MIND it's all about getting your head on straight. Our emotional wellness practitioners employ a variety of mindfulness-based practices and effective coping skills, along with a blend of ancient and contemporary energy therapies. They are a great resource, especially when you need to banish areas of self-sabotage or negative belief systems that are no longer serving you, but challenging to access, identify or "think" your way out of on your own.
One of the best ways I have found to banish the blues and find the joy is through proper nutrition. Read the articles or watch the "Brain Health" class in the Video section to learn about the gut-brain-immune system connection.
In FEED YOUR SOUL it's all about letting your body do the healing from the inside-out. Learning how to eat to heal and be happy is a #1 priority life skill. Our Functional Medicine doctors use a complete nutritional exam, blood lab tests, and analysis to create a customized program for each individual patient. Reach more about the Functional Medicine process here.
This is what I have done for myself and this is what has worked. I could write 10,000 words on what I tried that didn't work!
Since I have been a patient and I know what it is like to be at the end of your rope and to think there isn't any hope - I hope you will understand when I tell you I'm not a fan of false slogans, quick fixes, and empty promises.
So, it is with much humility that I tell you - utilizing these methods will create change in your life.
Will you be able to get off all medication and run a marathon? Maybe, maybe not. It's all individual.
I continue to be amazed by the body's ability to heal. I believe in creating the optimal environment and let's just see how far your body will take you...
And, did I mention it takes time?
There are some immediate changes you will experience, but real healing is slow. You are on the body's timetable. Natural treatment is profound, wonderful and absolutely necessary - but in my "I want it now", take a pill, use a sledgehammer, microwave, instant-gratification type of lifestyle - I had to learn that my attitude wouldn't work and was keeping me sick.
"So, it is with
that I tell you - utilizing these methods will
in your life."
Self-care isn't "pedal-to-the-metal" and when my body gave me no other choice, I finally decided to listen.
Whether I see you for a quick consult or a head-to-toe health makeover - I wish you all the love on your healing journey!
Serving Hands-On Healing,
"if you are determined to learn, no one can stop you"
education & licenses
Training & Certifications:
AFMCP/IFMCP training and certification through the Institute for Functional Medicine
Applied Clinical Nutrition training and certification
Advanced functional and clinical training in Gut Health (SIBO, Candida, LIBO), Blood Chemistry & Lab Analysis, Thyroid-Adrenal-Hormone Health, & Heart Health.
Post-graduate training in advanced bodywork techniques and eastern energy therapies.
Training and certification in Advanced Allergy Therapeutics (AAT)
Board-certified Chiropractic Physician in the State of California
Ability to order blood lab work, advanced functional labs (stool, urine, saliva, hair) and provide analysis and education
Doctor of Chiropractic (DC), Salutatorian, Magna Cum Laude from Life Chiropactic College West
Bachelor of Arts (BA) - Communications, Honors College, Cum Laude from Loyola Marymount University
IFM Member (Institute for Functional Medicine)
Publications & Teaching:
Head Instructor at the Functional Medicine Academy™
Wrote 300 pp "Body Love Cafe" book and taught over 50 classes on nutrition, hormone health, heart health, gut health, digestion and more
Identified the M.I.S.S.E.D. patient syndrome (Metabolic Immune Sensitized Syndrome & Energy Dysregulation)
Developed a lab software analysis program for other Functional Medicine physicians and practitioners
Frequently interviewed or teaches for other practitioners or health & wellness businesses
Writes monthly informational articles on health and nutrition for the Northgate Living magazine
Published non-fiction personality profiling & communication book with McGraw-Hill out of New York
Published a research article in The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics (JMPT), a peer-reviewed, biomedical publication
5th Generation Female Entrepreneur
Bay Area Native (grew up in Lafayette)
Was a single mom for 15 years
Loves riding electric bikes
Has an eye for interior design