03/28/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Soho House NY Wellness Week, Day 1: I definitely wasn't ready...

Soho House New York Wellness Week

Tuesday and Thursday from 9am-2pm

Dr. Jurica;
Dr. Scott Jurica is a holistic doctor specializing in integrative medicine, nutrition and applied kinesiology. Dr. Jurica will combine an array of the latest natural medicine techniques to aid weight loss, allergies, fatigue, or other complex health issues.

30 min service: $60.00


So, I went a little overboard today. And by that, I mean that I am having some difficulty writing this post--despite the excellent banquet oak dining table workspace I have somehow claimed to myself in the Soho House New York's bar and lounge area--because I am positively whirring with energy (possible explanation). Seriously. I'm a bit afraid of what might happen if I sit too close to the dangling overhead lamps.

Yes, I indulged. I had not one. Not two. But THREE! extraordinary treatments today as part of the Wellness Week going on through this Friday, January 29. Now, ideally I would have rationed myself and taken these treatments a day at a time--they are each excellent enough to merit their own 24 hours, at least--but experiencing them in tandem was, in fact, awesome. Still, in the interest of prolonging the suspense...and because I think each practitioner possessed a wealth of information that I'd like to share without crashing the entire HuffPo site, I've decided to space each treatment out on a per day basis, beginning with my first: Dr. Scott Jurica.

I'll say this for Dr. Scott: He could play a doctor on TV. Definitely charming. Definitely accomplished. Definitely about to send me on a whirlwind tour of my digestive system through his "Gut Rehabilitation" cleanse.

Before meeting the good doctor, I filled out the several page patient questionnaire, focusing primarily on my recent discovery of a gluten intolerance I seem to have developed. I thought I had it all figured out: the USA's over-processing of their grains, combined with my concurrent over-consumption of NYC's finest product, the bagel, sent my digestive system careening into a state of absolute mayhem. Woe is me (and believe me, I am woe-ing...I love bagels), but it was sort of my fault for neglecting to exert any kind of restraint during my youth and destroying what had been a perfectly functioning digestive system.

Dr. Jurica helped me to see the bigger picture. On the one hand, there are five main allergens that can create sensitivities for people on the Western diet: corn, wheat, dairy, soy, and sugar. Each of these have a particular protein (wheat has gluten, dairy has casein, etc) that the human body can have difficulty processing. (Side note: apparently, 30% of people have an issue with albumen, the primary content in an egg) On the other, people in our country rarely take time to deal with their stress levels in productive ways, which ends up contributing to the collective weakening of our immune systems and widespread digestive issues.

Here's how it works: When you're stressed, your body goes into "fight or flight" mode, sending blood rushing to the extremities should you need to spring into action or beat a retreat. Meanwhile, poor stomach is left with no blood supply to help in digestion. Your food ends up sitting there, undigested, essentially rotting and fermenting (acid reflux, anyone?). Food that isn't fully digested is then pushed along into the small intestine, which can't recognize the huge chunks of "mystery mash" you wolfed over a business lunch, and instead, it attacks. Your body quite literally wages war on the food you ate, and the result is an allergy or sensitivity for you.

But there's hope! Proper digestion is a prerequisite to storing food nutrients and properly eliminating toxins, and there are ways to cleanse your system and bring it back up to optimal functioning. Enter Dr. Jurica's "Gut Restoration" program. Using whole food extracts and tinctures, Dr. Jurica's plan is to restore the proper pancreatic enzymes and digestion- and cleanse-supporting isolates (ie. chorophyll), healing and rebuilding your digestive system is just a matter of time. The recalibration takes time, but the result is a smooth digestive process, coupled with the optimal immune function that comes along with being able to harvest all the good stuff food has to offer while efficiently flushing out the rest. That's not to say I can go back to my bagel habit, but I might be able to handle one every once in a while.

I haven't tried the program yet, but am going to be starting my trial run in the coming month, so will be sure to update anyone interested on how it goes and what it entails.

In addition to offering the above insights into the digestive plight of many Americans, Dr. Jurica and I discussed his applied kinesiology practice--he used some crazy, thumping massage machine called "The Percussor" on my leg and feet to get my muscles to fire properly and restore flexibility and strength to ligaments I'd injured. He also made me taste this disgusting pill (honestly, like eating fish food) that relieved any and all sore muscle stiffness literally within seconds. Must be magic.

Suffice it to say that Dr. Jurica is a practitioner of "the lost art of common sense." In his own words, "I'm not anti-drug; I'm pro-health." In an era that desperately needs more synthesis of the two--a meeting of east and west in a form that is palatable and accessible to the average, stressed out New Yorker--Dr. Jurica is something special.

Tune in tomorrow for my write up of acupunture and Chinatown apothecaries with Oriental medicine extraordinaire, Michelle Spina!