A lot has changed in my life during the three years since becoming a Natural Awakenings publisher. I’m pleased to note
that the thrill of seeing each monthly edition come together still sustains me through a dizzying and sometimes chaotic rush to meet our print date. Perhaps it’s due in part to my increasing awareness of the potential of this magazine and the power that’s unleashed by connecting with ourselves and others in our community.

This month I welcome managing editor Melanie Rankin, herself a former Natural Awakenings publisher. Melanie and I connected over our commitment to bring readers vital and actionable information in each monthly magazine. I’ve always viewed my publisher role as a connector, putting readers in contact with our community’s skilled wellness practitioners.

Our main themes this month speak to the power of connection. Exploring the power of touch, writer Marlaina Donato offers a comprehensive guide to ward off inflammation and premature cell death in “Age-Defying Bodywork: How to Turn Back the Clock.” She explains how fortifying the nervous system through massage, acupuncture and reflexology is critical to combating age-accelerating stress hormones like cortisol—and has been embraced by the medical mainstream.

Creating connections and community is examined by entrepreneur, DJ and author Radha Agrawal in our Wise Words article. Agrawal is on a mission to catalyze community and connect people meaningfully through their shared talents, values and passions. Her recent book, Belong: Find Your People, Create Community and Live a More Connected Life, offers a step-by-step guide to identifying your values, interest and abilities, and finding ways to use them to serve your community.

The mind-body connection is also at the forefront of writer April Thompson’s “Ayurvedic Cooking: Ancient System Restores Balance.” Here, in one of the world’s oldest systems, food is medicine; the menu is seasonal and local, and timing and preparation are critical to rebalancing health.

Make this a September to remember by making valuable connections. We hope you enjoy this edition, prepared with love and intention for your best life.