#CureArthritis


curearthritis
Derek Belisle (Marketing Director, Arthritis National Research Foundation) and Katie Stewart-Singh (KStew Vents about RA) at the 2018 Meet the Scientists Event

I had the privilege of attending the Arthritis National Research Foundation’s annual Meet the Scientists event last night in Newport Beach, CA. As a volunteer, I oversaw the selfie booth. Before I go on a tangent about how every event should have a selfie booth, let me gush about how amazing this organization is.

The Arthritis National Research Foundation funds research to cure arthritis and is one of the only arthritis organizations that focuses solely on funding research. Their grant recipients are early-career MD and/or PHD scientists with innovative ideas that need funding to launch their research and make the next breakthrough.

Quick facts from CureArthritis.org:

About their research:

  • Over 250 scientists funded since 1970
  • Their arthritis research projects have led to new information and treatments
  • 10-20 grants per year – $15 million in research awards since 2000
  • World-renowned Scientific Advisory Board of physician-scientists

About their commitment to excellence:

  • 4-Star Charity Navigator rating for 9-straight years, placing the foundation in the Top 1% of US charities
  • “Outstanding” as ranked by independent scientific panel
  • On average, over 90% of every donation is placed into research programs
  • In 2017, ANRF achieved the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Guidestar. Only 5% of the 32,000 nonprofits listed in GuideStar have achieved this ranking.

In addition to making great strides towards curing arthritis, the team is comprised of some of my favorite people I’ve met in the Arthritis community. I first met Helene (Executive Director) and Derek Belisle (Marketing Director) when researching the organization in 2011. Derek agreed to meet me for coffee in Long Beach where we had a great conversation and discussed some of the research projects they were funding. Soon after meeting Derek, he introduced me to his Mom, Helene who has been the Executive Director of the organization these past 22 years. Helene has taken the organization from being able to fund 1-2 researchers a grant of $50,000 per year to being able to give an amazing $100,000 to 12-25 scientists per year! And although Helene will be retiring this week, her legacy will carry on for many, many years to come. Last night, Derek shared an extremely heartfelt dedication to his Mom as her retirement became official. As Derek’s speech went on, my dinner napkin became my tissue, and I realized there was not a dry eye in the room.

From Nicole Dalton being our charming and hilarious master of ceremonies last night to Dr. James Louie’s enlightening presentation about artists with arthritis, such as Pierre Auguste Renior, Raoul and John Outterbridge, to having great conversations with Dr. Jason Knight, Lupus researcher, ANRF grant recipient and fellow Midwesterner at my table, I cannot say enough great things about this group!

HERE’S WHAT I’M GETTING AT…The Arthritis National Research Foundation is an organization I TRULY feel good standing behind! So if you’re looking to fund arthritis research (rather than overhead, red tape and nonsense programs), I would strongly encourage you to make The Arthritis National Research Foundation your go-to charity!

#CUREARTHRITIS #MEETTHESCIENTISTS

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I’m proud to be an Accessible Yoga Ambassador


Hey y’all! I’m proud to announce that I recently became an Accessible Yoga Ambassador and am looking forward to making yoga accessible to all underserved communities throughout Los Angeles’s South Bay area via my company, South Bay Yoga Therapy.

South Bay Yoga Therapy specializes in yoga modifications for those with limited mobility, injuries and chronic pain in individual or group settings. Offering chair yoga, relaxation and meditation techniques, our commitment is to focus on the every kind of body and mind.

Contact us today for more information:

  • Website: southbayyoga.org
  • Email: katie@southbayyoga.org

Namaste-
Katie

Accessible Yoga Meme

 

Let’s meet at Natural Products Expo West


natprod

Today I arrived at Natural Products Expo West which is ironically located next to the happiest place on Earth…Disneyland. There are so many awesome, inspiring natural products and brands represented that I cannot wait to interact with! Check back soon for a run down of my favorite products in an upcoming blog post.

And if you’re here in Anaheim and want to say hello, please tweet at me so I can set up time to see your bright, smiling face. @kstew_arthritis.

Namaste for now,

Katie

KStew Vents About RA – Named a Top Arthritis Blog to Follow in 2018


Top Rheumatoid Arthritis Blog 2018

 

”Top

 

Wanting to send a quick shout out and HUGE thank you to Home Remedies for Life who named KStew Vents About RA as a top arthritis blog to follow in 2018. Here’s a rundown on the other great blogs that made the list.

I’m so honored and elated to be mentioned alongside these fierce, inspirational, rheumatoid arthritis warriors.

In closing, as Maria, writer of “From This Point Forward” states… We have RA. RA doesn’t have us.

Be well my friends.

Namaste for RA


According to the Arthritis Foundation, it’s proven that regular yoga practice can help reduce joint pain, improve joint flexibility and function and lower stress and tension to promote better sleep.

So after 13 years of using yoga as alternative therapy for the physical and mental limitations brought on by my Rheumatoid Arthritis, I recently decided to take my practice to another level by attending a two day immersive yoga teacher training conference with YogaFit in Palm Springs, California.

My long term vision is to help those with chronic disease use yoga as an alternative therapy vs. popping pills to simply mask the pain. So if you know anyone in Southern California interested in learning more about the benefits of yoga for pain management, please contact me.

Namaste.

What is #ArthritisStreetCred?


I was fortunate enough to meet some fellow RA warriors over the weekend. We shared stories of pain, suffering, laughter, courage, fear, hope, loneliness, depression, fitness goals, clean eating tips and most important of all, quality time spent with people who have so much in common with each other.

As the weekend progressed, I jotted down some notes that I’ve wanted to share with you, my dear readers. One of my favorite discussions was built around what we coined #ArthritisStreetCred. Below is a list of just a few things that gives individuals #ArthritisStreetCred.

  1. People accuse you of being dramatic rather than sick because you look just fine to them. The truth is, rheumatoid arthritis is often an invisible disease so you may look fine on the outside, while you’re reeling from pain on the inside
  2. Your pharmacist knows you by name. If you’re like me, you’ve switched medications umpteen million times, trying to find the right potion or dosage to help alleviate your RA symptoms. This requires frequent visits to the local pharmacist. I like to think of myself like Norm from Cheers when I walk into CVS. I apologize to those not born before the early 80’s, as this reference will make zero sense to you.Norm from Cheers
  3. You go gluten free because it helps alleviate arthritis inflammation but people chastise you for hopping on the trendy diet bandwagon you since you don’t technically have celiac disease. Look people! I’m not going to throw up every time I eat a piece of bread, but I did take a food sensitivity test at my doctor’s office that confirmed my body is majorly adverse to baker’s yeast and flour. And when I eat those things, my body feels crappy. Take that jerks.
  4. There are days you wake up and cannot get out of bed because the pain is too excruciating. There are nights you can’t sleep because you feel like you’re dying and even consider chopping off one of your own limbs to make the pain stop (well maybe that’s going a little overboard). I’m not a parent (yet), so can only imagine the heartbreak of not being able to lift or care for your baby without someone’s assistance. In my eyes, this is the epitome of #ArthritisStreetCred.
  5. You walk with a cane or leg braces, wear wrist braces, knee braces, various ace bandages…. And you’re only 25. This is what I call #ArthritisStreetFashion.
  6. Injecting needles into your own body or getting infusions is the norm for you. Every time I hear someone say they’re afraid to get a shot, I secretly snicker under my breath, especially when it’s a big, strong, man. If they only knew what it was like to administer their own shots on a regular basis.

I know there are tons more examples of what gives our community #ArthritisStreetCred. I’d love to hear some of yours!