Is your medication undermining your healthy diet?

So what would your response to that question be?  Is your daily medication, which you take to reduce your blood pressure, stop your menopausal symptoms, reduce your asthma symptoms, whatever the medication is for, could it be undermining your healthy diet, by depleting your body of the vitamins and minerals it needs.

The answer is yes!

Regardless of whether they are prescription drugs or over the counter medication, without hesitation, they will be stripping the body of what it requires on a daily basis to maintain a level of health and wellbeing.

So, now not only do we need to think about eating enough fruit and veg every day, we also need to think about what shortfalls there may be as a result of medication. Enough already!

Let’s look at a few examples of this

Antibiotics are widely taken across the world and it is commonly known as a medication which depletes the body of beneficial gut flora, the friendly bacteria in our guts.  In addition to this, antibiotics will also steal from our body’s stores of B vitamins, calcium, magnesium and iron.

Blood pressure medication will remove a large number of vitamins and minerals from the body.  Vitamin D, calcium, magnesium, potassium, melatonin and zinc.

How about HRT and other hormonal medications?  These will deplete the body of beneficial gut flora, magnesium, zinc, vitamins C and B.

A simple pain relief pill, taken for a headache perhaps, will deplete the bodies’ stores of vitamin C, Folic acid and iron.

Regardless of what the medication is for, the effects will be a shortfall of essential nutrients.

But what does this mean to our general health? The symptoms of these shortfalls in vitamins and minerals are varied.

Vitamin C, which we all think to take when we need to boost our immune system, is responsible for the integrity of connective tissue in the body. A lack of the vitamin will result in frequent infections, lack of energy, bleeding gums, slow wound healing and poor skin.

Vitamin D, helps to support bone health. A shortfall will lead to muscle cramps, arthritic pains, tooth decay, hair loss, excessive sweating and a lack of energy.

A lack of Zinc in the diet will cause infertility issues, poor sense of taste and smell, skin issues, frequent infections, poor appetite and depression. A sure sign that you have a Zinc deficiency are white marks on your nails.

The big one, which the majority of us are short on regardless of what medication we take, is magnesium. Magnesium is a natural tranquiliser, soothing and cooling the nervous system and brain. A lack of this mineral causes muscle weakness and pain, insomnia, depression, high blood pressure and an irregular heart beat. It can also lead to constipation as it is a natural laxative.

Can I just nip to the shops and buy a cheap multivitamin?

When clients come to see me for nutritional advice, I always suggest they buy the most expensive vitamins they can afford (such as those made by Cytoplan).  It’s the one area that I advise not trying to scrimp and save on.  Vitamins from the supermarket may seem good value, because they are inexpensive, but this is because they are full of cheap fillers such as corn starch and chalk, which in themselves cause problems in the body.

Our bodies are literally under attack every day. From the environments we live in, our stressful and busy schedules, the pesticides used for foods and the chemicals added to foods and water.   It would be a tall order to try and remove all of these from our diets and eat clean, organic foods, avoid medications and pollutants every day for the rest of our lives. However, making a few small conscious changes to your everyday life will have long term benefits for our body’s various organs and our quality of life.

And of course, I’m here to help

Sophie x

Menopause, a time for transition

Menopause is a natural process, which occurs with age as a woman’s body adapts to the changes that result from ovarian decline.  The Pituitary gland, found in the brain, attempts to stimulate the ovaries back into function, which in turn results in the symptoms associated with menopause, such as hot flushes.  At this time, the adrenal glands are expected to take over the role of the declining ovaries, so if they are exhausted or compromised in any way the process becomes harder work for the hormonal system to process and adapt to.  Likewise, if the liver is overburdened with toxicity from diet and lifestyle choices, it is unable to assist in the detoxing of the body and processing of hormones.

The onset of menopause usually occurs between the ages of 50 and 55 and is a gradual cessation of menstruation.  Peri-menopause, seen as the transitional period before menopause, can occur anytime between 2 and 20 years before menopause.  During this time, women usually see irregularity of their menstrual cycle caused by fluctuations in the levels of oestrogen and progesterone.  Scientists believe that the peri-menopausal stage is occurring earlier and earlier due to the number of hormone-like chemicals in today’s environment, which disrupt a woman’s natural cycle.

When patients come to see me for support, I generally offer a combination of Homeopathic remedies, herbal and nutritional supplements, which together alleviate symptoms and support this transition stage.

Diet and lifestyle are important factors for this time of transition. The hormonal changes within the body can put additional stress on women’s body’s, so it’s the ideal time to make yourself a priority.

So how can you help your body through this time of transition?

Adding Calcium and Magnesium to your diet will help alleviate anxiety and protect bone health.

Vitamins B & E can reduce hot flushes and improve circulation, Vitamin B also helps with feelings of stress and anxiety, often felt by menopausal women. I’ve mentioned in other blogs how the adrenal glands are affected by the menopause, so I always recommend my clients consider a good quality adrenal support supplement to help combat anxiety and exhaustion.

Essential Fatty Acids also alleviate hot flushes and act as a diuretic for those who experience fluid retention.

By avoiding foods which stimulate the adrenal glands, which are already under additional demand you will help to lessen symptoms such as hot flushes. For example, caffeinated drinks and alcohol stimulate the adrenals and also over stimulate the nervous system.

Most health food shops also stock a good range of herbal tinctures, such as Hypericum, Agnus Castus and Black Cohosh, all of which help to rebalance the hormonal symptom and relieve symptoms. I’ve had great success supporting women with Homeobotanicals, which combine all of these herbs (and a few more!) to alleviate some of the symptoms experienced at this time.

If supplements are your preference, Evening Primrose Oil is a good source of Omega 6 and fatty acids. Ashwagandha is a well known Ayurverdic herb which supports the symptoms of menopause.

If sleep becomes a problem, I recommend Neals Yard Goodnight Pillow Mist to help calm and relax the body into sleep.

There are so many ways for us, as women to support our bodies, with around 30 different symptoms now considered to be associated with the menopause, no two women are likely to experience the same.

There’s so much more information I could share with you, drop me a line if you’d like some advice and support.

Sophie x

‘I’m just so tired all the time’

Even if you don’t say this often, there are definitely periods of our lives when we all feel exhausted.  I’ve certainly had stretches of time where I feel as if I’m running on the hamster wheel, not getting anywhere with what I have to do, but feeling exhausted as a result.  In fact it’s thought that 80% of us will undergo adrenal fatigue multiple times in our lives.

Feeling tired and exhausted seems to be a natural state of everyday life for many of us nowadays, and as a result we reach for stimulants such as caffeine and sugar to keep us going.  But these quick fix pick me ups actually make the matter much worse. 

The primary gland in the body to cause fatigue are the adrenal glands and the biggest thing to impact them is stress.  We’ve all heard of the term ‘fight or flight’ and stress of any kind can put our body’s into this state for long periods of time, leading to what we refer to as adrenal burnout.

Stress comes in many forms, both physical and emotional and many of us are used to having a low level of stress in our lives and may feel we thrive on it.  In addition to this, different stages of our lives, such as pregnancy and child birth and the menopause, put additional strain on our adrenals as they are required to work harder during these times.  This may mean our usual levels of stress become overwhelming and we need additional support.

Let’s look at some of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue

Symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue:

  • You crash in the early part of the day, or throughout the day.
  • You feel tired all day, but more alert at home in the evening.  This happens when your adrenal glands hold on to energy reserves in case an emergency arises.
  • You’re exhausted but can’t sleep.  The body needs adrenal hormones to help with sleep, so a lack of these will cause sleep issues.
  • You feel tired even after a night’s sleep.    Again this is because of the adrenal hormones needed to aid sleep.
  • You are continually sweaty.  This is a result of the entire endocrine system being under stress and having to work harder to compensate for the adrenal glands.
  • You feel thirsty all the time and cave salt.  Cortisol affects the electrolytes in your blood and results in nervous system problems. 
  • Blurry vision or difficulty focusing.  Again this is down to a flood of cortisol, which dehydrates the body.  You may also find dark circles around the eyes, which is an adrenal sign.
  • Craving stimulants. This is usually a sign of needing a quick energy boost for the lack of adrenal hormones.  Alas the crash afterwards forces the adrenals to over perform and then become exhausted, which over time makes the issue worse.

Many of us can recognise a number of these symptoms as present in our lives. So how do we go about avoiding this and boost our adrenals, so that they perform at their optimum for us?

How to avoid fatigue:

  • The most obvious but possibly hardest is to avoid long term stress and extreme stress as this sets up the over production of adrenaline.
  • Avoid artificial stimulants such as caffeine, energy drinks and drugs that give you an artificial boost.
  • Strong negative emotions are another strain on the adrenals.  Fear, anxiety, anger, grief. Anything that makes you feel bad emotionally.  Positive emotions will give you a boost!
  • Eat regularly.  Eating 3 times a day will cause your blood sugar to drop and this forces the body to use hormones such as cortisol to keep it ticking over.  This puts strain on the adrenals and little time to recover. Snacking every couple of hours on foods such as apples, dates, avocados will help keep blood sugar levels stable.
  • Avoid eating too much meat.  The fat in meat will put a strain on your pancreas and liver, eventually creating insulin resistance.  This is turn makes it difficult for your body to maintain stable glucose levels, which your adrenal glands then need to regulate by creating additional hormones to compensate.

Supplements and herbal support:

You could take an all-round adrenal support supplement, which contains a range of vitamins and herbs to optimise the glands function.  Or if you prefer, you can take individual supplements as noted below:

  • Ginseng:  More suited to men, but women may take it.  Will balance the adrenals, increase stamina, energy and libido.   Helps to protect the adrenal glands from overreacting to stress.
  • Borage: Anti-inflammatory properties, supports adrenal cortex.  Helps revive and renew adrenal glands particularly after steroid treatment.
  • Discorea: Excellent for restoring the endocrine system.  Anti-inflammatory and blood purifier.
  • Passiflora: quietens the nervous system, aids sleep in those who are stressed and overwrought.
  • Skullcap: wonderful herb for anxiety and nervous tension.
  • Liquorice: can support underactive adrenal glands and boosts the entire endocrine system.  Seen as a natural steroid.  Will balance the levels of cortisol and cortisone.  Can be taken as a tea.
  • Vitamin C: Lowers inflammation in the body and soothes the adrenal glands.
  • Magnesium: Lowers anxiety and calms overactive nervous system, reducing adrenal stress.
  • Chromium:  Helps balance insulin levels and improves the strength of the adrenal glands, thyroid gland and the pancreas.
  • Selenium helps to normalise the immune system, thyroid function and protects the body against stress.
  • Ashwagandha:  helps balance the production of testosterone and cortisol. A great supplement for use during the menopause.
  • Astragalus: strengthens the immune and endocrine systems
  • Lemon Balm: replenishes the nervous system and helps regulate the production of insulin
  • Rhodiola:  optimizes adrenal function.

My two essences Calm and Energise contain a combination of many of the above herbs and are worth considering as an easily accessible support.  Have a browse through my shop page for more information on them.

Of course, there are many homeopathic remedies which can be considered too! 

Do get in touch if you’d like my help and support

With Gratitude, Sophie x





3 Things you can do to improve your hay fever symptoms this year

I’ve been amazed by how early people’s hay fever symptoms have started this year, but  perhaps with the lack of winter and the resulting early blossoming of many trees and flowers, that’s a bit naïve of
me! 

The expectation is that this year, we will see pollen levels many times higher than has been recorded
for decades.  Not good news if every spring you expect to be affected by these pesky pollens for 3, 4 or 6 months of the year.

Thankfully,there are a few things you can do to help support your body and lessen the symptoms affecting your eyes, nose and throat.

Just three things can help to alleviate your symptoms, a few vitamins supplements, changes to what you eat and keeping a few Homeopathic remedies or a tincture to hand.

First, consider removing or reducing Histamine forming foods in your diet:

Histamine is produced by the body as a local immune response, and very often we hear of people being given an anti-histamine to reduce the reaction to an allergic response.

Histamine in its natural form is found throughout the body, such as the brain where it plays a role in the sleep wake process and in the stomach.  It is this second area of the body that we can look to support by adjusting our diets to remove Histamine forming foods, thereby lessening the allergic response by allowing your body to focus on removing the allergens from pollen rather than the histamine foods in your stomach.

So, if you look to remove the following foods from your diet, you may notice an improvement in your symptoms:

Alcohol, particularly red wine and champagne. But also white wine and beer.

Smoked and processed meats such as salami, ham and bacon

Certain vegetables: tomato, spinach, avocado,mushrooms and canned vegetables as well as commercially prepared salads

Certain fruits: strawberries, bananas, papayas, kiwi, pineapple, mango, tangerines, grapefruits, prunes,
pears, raspberries

Red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, Soy sauce, Mustard, Ketchup

Cheese

Bread and confectionery made with yeast

Peanuts, cashews, walnuts

Chocolate/cocoa, Coffee, black tea

Ok, so maybe giving up wine for 6 months isn’t likely, what supplements can you add to your daily diet to help…

Wholefood Cherry  rich in vitamins and minerals, in particular vitamin C important for supporting the immune and respiratory system.

Selenium once available from soil, where it is now mostly depleted, Selenium treats inflammation in the body and improves respiratory conditions such as asthma

Vitamin B12  as well as boosting energy levels and mood, B12 also helps to balance the hormone levels
in the body, which can be affected by increased histamine.

Vitamin D3 is another vitamin which supports the body’s immune response which can be  compromised by allergies.

 

And finally some remedies…..

Nat Mur the symptoms of this remedy are of watery discharges from the eyes and nose with lots of sneezing. There may also be a loss of smell and a tickly cough.

Arsenicum, a remedy for symptoms that are burning, usually the eyes and the skin around the nose. 
Symptoms often leave the person feeling restless and exhausted.

Euphrasia also has burning, prickly eyes, with lots of sneezing.  People generally feel worse indoors

Nux Vomica sufferers are very light sensitive, they have blocked noses and itchy inner ears.  This is also a good remedy for migraine type headaches.

My most asked for remedy is my hay fever tincture,
which combines a number of remedies and herbs that are known to support the
respiratory system and reduce hay fever symptoms, drop me an email if you’d
like to learn more.

Superhuman or super stressed?

You’re a busy, efficient person, juggling a daily ‘to do’ list, racing everywhere at 100mph trying to achieve as much as you can every day.

You do so much for everyone around you, the kids, colleagues at work, your friends and partner, the neighbour, the dog the cat.  You get the picture!

You are SuperhumanSuper-efficient, never complaining, it’s GREAT to be able to do so much.

But you are EXHAUSTED and STRESSED. You’re definitely not FINE!!

Yes, you do perhaps rely too heavily on coffee and sugar to get you through the day.  So the weight gain is probably easily sorted by reducing your intake of sweets and cookies, and if you just knocked a few things off your ‘to do’ list, you would probably be less forgetful as you’d have less to remember!

Let’s just check that you’re not TOO stressed. Let’s take a look at your adrenal glands and see if you’re showing signs of adrenal fatigue.

Most of us are so used to having some form of ongoing stress in our lives, that we actually aren’t aware of it.

Our body’s adapt to keep us going and hormones such as Cortisol are produced by the body to ‘keep us going’ Cortisol is also the hormone that gives us that ‘spare tyre’ around our midriff. Its role is to balance blood sugar and regulate inflammation in our cells and muscles, so an imbalance of this not only causes us to crave stimulants, and gain weight, but can also result in muscle pain and other inflammatory processes.

The adrenals produce hormones that affect energy, blood chemistry and are involved in the ‘fight or flight’ process that kicks in when we are in danger or stressed.  For many of us, who have been in a chronic state of stress for any period of time, could find that we have been in a state of ‘fight or flight’ for months or even years.

So what happens when our adrenals respond to stress?

Our heart rate speeds up, which raises blood sugar levels and blood pressure. This would be fine if it was a short term thing because we were being chased by a tiger, it’s not a good thing if it’s minute after minute, day after day.

The ‘dangers‘ of today, meeting deadlines, juggling chores, being in the right place at the right time are all dangers that don’t go away like the tiger perhaps would.

Being in this state of constant ‘fear’ sends our adrenals into overdrive and our hormones go into melt down, often leading to adrenal fatigue or burn out.

The thing is, the adrenal glands are just one of the glands in the body, which all work together and help balance each other out.  So yes, you guessed it, when one gland is out, they are all out and the entire hormonal system becomes unbalanced.

So although you think you’re OK and can deal with the stressed state you’re in, it may be that your chronic state of stress is actually the reason why your thyroid gland isn’t functioning properly, or your menstrual cycle has gone haywire or why you are constantly suffering with colds and stomach bugs.

How many of these symptoms can you recognise in yourself?

  • Constant tiredness, even trying to get out of bed is an effort.
  • Low blood pressure.
  • Low metabolism and/or low thyroid.
  • Muscle weakness/pain.
  • Low immune system and catching coughs, colds and ‘flu.
  • Irregular periods with sore/lumpy breasts.  Also lack of ovulation and difficulty falling pregnant. 
  • Allergies and/or asthma.
  • Depression. 
  • Trouble handling stress and coping with life. 

It’s important to see you Doctor if you’re worried about your health, but what can you do to help yourself?

AVOID!!

  • Adding more stress!
  • Stimulants – yes quit the caffeine…coffee, tea, chocolate, caffeinated drinks, alcohol
  • Sugar and refined carbs because they send your blood sugar, energy and moods on a rollercoaster.
  • Processed foods, anything with additives in, which puts a stress on the body to break down and process.

WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR YOURSELF

  • Try to manage your stress. Get into the habit of asking for help!
  • Get enough rest and sleep.  ‘Me time’ is important too.
  • Eat nutritionally rich foods. Plenty of fruit and veg, good fats – yes some fats are good for you! good quality protein, complex carbs. And try to drink more water!
  • Take the best quality multivitamin and mineral complex you can afford. Buying the cheapest in the shop is a false economy.
  • Magnesium levels are often low in us all nowadays, which can add to muscle soreness and fatigue,consider adding some bath salts to your bath to improve your levels.  I like Neal’s Yard bath salts with added Arnica to soothe sore muscles, you can have a browse of their lovely products via this website. 

If you’d like some more help and advice on how to tackle your stress levels, drop me a line today!

Love Your Hormones – it really is possible!

Is it time to love your hormones?!

As women, many of us have come to believe that hormones are bad, and attach negative emotions and symptoms to them.  They are in fact just a sign of transition from one stage of our lives into another. In most women, hormone levels start to decline around their mid-thirties, gradually at first, then accelerating through their forties, before levelling out between 50 and 55. However, when this decline commences, progesterone production falls considerably faster than oestrogen. The result is a widened gap in the levels of these two hormones which does not right itself until hormone levels finally stabilise in the years following the menopause. This natural change in hormone levels is aggravated by modern environmental and lifestyle factors, which are believed to be responsible for the increasing incidence of what’s referred to as oestrogen dominance.  

So what are the symptoms of Oestrogen Dominance? 

  • Acceleration of the ageing process
  • Allergies, including asthma, rashes, sinus congestion and autoimmune disorders
  • Breast tenderness
  • Cervical Dysplasia
  • Cold hands and feet, relating to thyroid dysfunction
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Depression with anxiety or agitation
  • Dry eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Fibrocystic breasts
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Hair loss
  • Headaches
  • Hypoglycaemia
  • Inability to focus
  • Early onset of menstruation
  • Fat gain, especially around the abdomen, hips and thighs
  • Mood swings
  • Osteoporosis
  • Pre-menopausal bone loss
  • Increase blood clotting
  • Increased risk of strokes
  • Infertility
  • Irregular menstruation
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Memory loss
  • PMS
  • Sluggish metabolism
  • Uterine cancer
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Water retention, bloating
  • Miscarriage

             Phew!  That’s quite a list

What can you do to stay in balance?

Oestrogen dominance can occur at any age and a first step is to look at your lifestyle.  The basic building blocks of optimal hormone balance start with a good wholefood diet, regular exercise and stress reduction as that can play a major part in most hormonal symptoms. Oestrogen dominance is driven by our modern day exposure to hormones found in animal products, excessive sugar, the birth control pill and environmental endocrine disruptors. In the 1990’s soya products were given to cattle, so those of us who eat meat were consuming phytoestrogens in our diets.  Cattle are also given Bovine Growth Hormone and antibiotics, so consider green leafy vegetables rather than dairy to get Calcium into your diet. Plastics leach phalates into our foods/water supply, which is why there are been so much news about oestrogen entering our body’s via plastic bottles. These phalates mimic hormones and therefore disrupt the natural balance. Pesticides also do this, hence the need to include organic foods where possible in our diets.  

Some self-help ideas:

If you have been on any form of hormone therapy (The Birth Control Pill, IVF, HRT etc) then it is likely your body is lacking some vital nutrients: Magnesium and Potassium – symptoms include fatigue, cramps, anxiety, sleep issues and cravings for sugar and chocolate.  Anyone entering my clinic stating they are craving chocolate gets sent away with a magnesium supplement!  Magnesium is quickly used up when we are stressed or have a diet high in tea, coffee and sugar, which deplete the body of this vital mineral.  Magnesium is also needed by the body to help absorb and balance Calcium and Vitamin D. Vitamin B – a lack of B vitamins will show as a loss of appetite, fatigue and weakness, oversensitivity, depression, anxiety, skin problems, sleep problems, constipation.  Consider adding more fish, poultry, whole grains and potatoes in your diet. Selenium – needed for healthy hair and breast health. Heavy metals found in pesticides, some fish, deodorants and fillings have been known to deplete the body’s stores of selenium and zinc.  Selenium can be found in Brazil nuts. Chromium – to help balance blood sugar levels. Chromium also helps raise the body’s metabolic rate. Zinc – the birth control pill is known to deplete the body’s zinc levels.  Pumpkin seeds are a good natural source. Calcium – rather than getting this from dairy products, which have been pasteurised and may contain growth hormones etc, consider getting calcium from dark green leafy vegetables.  Mineral waters such as San Pellegrino and Perrier are known for their high mineral contents too, so swap your next Diet Coke for a fizzy water!  

Consider switching to organic meat & dairy to avoid synthetic hormones

Cut back on sugar, caffeine, alcohol and limit stressful situations, all of which deplete our magnesium levels.  The body will start to take magnesium from our bones if there’s a shortfall in our diets!  

It can take 6 months to restore magnesium levels!

Take a bath in Epsom salts twice a week to boost levels or consider buying some Magnesium supplements.

Add some nuts and seeds to your cereal        

A handful of almonds for calcium, pumpkin seeds for zinc and 4 Brazil nuts for selenium. Dark berries and fruits are high in antioxidants and micronutrients so add them to breakfasts or a handful in a smoothie.  Green Tea is also high in antioxidants, which help the body remove cell damaging free radicals, chemicals and environmental pollutants.  

A range of organic, vegan, non GM super food supplements and a ‘Transformational’ 10 Day Cleanse, which is helping thousands of people beat lifelong sugar cravings! I particularly like Best of Greens or Love Supermeal to add to a smoothie or juice and Ionic Elements as a single supplement for ensuring you get all of your mineral requirements daily.  I add a few drops of this to a bottle of water every day – it’s that easy to get the whole range of minerals into your diet!http://www.platinumuk.biz/wisehealth

Consider some of the Super foods and supplements available from Purium. 
Some herbs and spices worth considering:

Herbs such as turmeric and ginger help to relieve hormonal cramps by increasing blood flow through the uterus and have anti-inflammatory properties.  Fennel seed tea is also worth considering for painful periods as an anti-inflammatory option to over the counter drugs. Members of the brassica family (broccoli and kale) contain vital nutrients that help the body process oestrogen and help the liver to detox the body.  Also useful for this are onions, garlic and leeks.  A few grams of seaweed helps to feed the hormonal system and improves a sluggish metabolism.  It’s also good for the thyroid gland. Phytoestrogens, found in plant based foods help to balance oestrogen, so consider adding flaxseeds or lentils to your diet. Oestrogen levels drop at the time of menopause, so consider these foods at this time to establish balance naturally. Finally, herbs such as oregano, thyme, rosemary and sage promote good liver function and help the organ to detox excessive oestrogen effectively. Sage tea also has also been used successfully to reduce hot flushes in menopausal women.  

How about some oils and Essential Fatty Acids to balance things:

Naturopaths and other complimentary practitioners will use EFA’s and organic oils to help balance an irregular menstrual cycle, once other causes (Endometriosis, Polycystic Ovaries, fibroids etc) have been excluded. Flaxseed and pumpkin oil are used to support the first (oestrogen) phase, while sesame and sunflower oil are used to support the second (progesterone) phase. Essential Fatty Acids (EFA’s) can be found in raw foods, as processing/cooking foods destroys them.  Nuts and seeds are a good source too. The Natural Dispensary is a great website for buying health products, herbal teas, essential oils, vitamins, minerals and natural hair and beauty products.  Contact me for a discount code to get 15% discount off any orders you place with them – postage is free for orders over £25  

If you’d like a health overview, to look at any vitamin or mineral short falls there might be in your diet, or to discuss how Homeopathy may be able to help your hormonal or general health, then drop me a line.

A Case of Carpel Tunnel Syndrome – pain no more!

It is not unusual for me to find that patients forget how ill they used to be, or how much pain they were originally in before they came to try Homeopathy!

If, at an initial consultation, a patient can use a scale of 1-10 to measure a symptom they have, such as pain or itchiness as an example, then I use this as a record of how symptoms have improved.  Time and time again, patients simply forget how they felt at that first appointment and are quite amazed by the improvements they’ve attained!

As an example, Trudy came to see me today for her second appointment, having seen me initially a month again for the symptoms and constant pain she was suffering with from Carpel Tunnel syndrome, a condition which affects the nerves in the arms and hands of people, giving them intense pain, numbness, tingling, swelling and weakness.  Mostly resulting in a need for surgery at some point.

A month previously, Trudy had scored her pain as 9 out of 10 with a need to take strong pain relief daily and throughout the night, as the pain was bad enough to wake her most nights.   Having taken Trudy’s presenting symptoms down and made a note of the intensity of her pain I prescribed a combination of Homeopathic remedies and Homeobotanical tinctures which would support her body to improve the pain and burning sensation she felt 24/7.

When I initially asked Trudy how her month had been, she said she felt there had been some improvement, but was unsure if it was significant.  I asked Trudy if she was still taking co-codemol daily and during the night when she woke, to which she replied ‘oh no, I barely take any pain relief, perhaps just once or twice a week!’   I then went on to ask how her sleep had been, again Trudy replied that her sleep had been great as she wasn’t waking up in pain each night.

At this point, I showed Trudy the score she had previously given her daily pain, the 9 out of 10, which had been awarded by her a month ago she felt had reduced to a 2 or 3 out of 10!

The subtlety of Homeopathy is often its downfall. Patients often aren’t able to remember how bad their symptoms were before they started and the gradual improvement of symptoms between appointments is difficult to gauge without the simple scoring system used by many homeopaths to measure the improvements.

If this sounds familiar to you, drop me a line I’d love to hear more about your experiences.

Run your best race ever at The London Marathon 2018

How would you feel if you stood on the start line of the London Marathon 2018 later this month knowing that you were in your best shape ever?

Wouldn’t it feel great if you knew you had done everything you could to ensure you ran the race of your life?

Looking after the inside of your body is just as important as looking after the outside.

Using foods and supplements to help your body recover from training, avoid inflammation and support the recovery from any injuries.

Let’s look at a few simple changes you can make to ensure 2018 is the year you run your best race ever!

Inflammatory foods:

It’s not just fast foods and sugar which can cause inflammation in your body. Everyday foods like bacon, eggs, coffee and dairy products are linked to inflammation. That might not sound like a big deal, but consider the fact that most chronic conditions like cancer, arthritis and diabetes, have been linked to inflammation.Low grade inflammation is a factor in most health issues.  And if you suffer a pain disorder, you better believe that inflammatory foods will aggravate the condition.

Anti-inflammatory foods, when included in your daily diet will help eliminate the tendency for many health conditions and help the body reduce/avoid pain.

Blueberries, Cayenne Pepper and Celery all reduce the body’s pain levels.  Tart cherries have been found to be 10 times more effective than aspirin for reducing pain.  My favourite is Purium’s Tart Cherry juice.  Turmeric and ginger can both be used in teas to help reduce pain, whether it’s chronic or acute.  If you have a sweet tooth, berries such as raspberries are a must for anti-inflammatory support.

How about some supplements and remedies too.

Devils Claw is readily available in tablet and liquid form and has been found to relieve muscle and joint aches and pains.  It’s also great for sciatic pain and rheumatism.   Well worth having on standby for taking after longer runs or to support injury recovery.

Homeopathic remedies are becoming increasingly popular and with remedies such as Arnica, Ruta and Rhus Tox supporting the body to recover from overworked and strained muscles, ligaments and tendons, seeing a Homeopath to get an individualised prescription of remedies is worth considering.

I’ve put aside a few appointments for those getting ready to race in a few weeks’ time.

Using bioresonance, we can look at what foods you should eliminate for a few weeks and what supplements you would benefit from adding to make sure you’re in peak condition on race day.  Moving on, to making sure you have all bases covered, we can look at what support you’ll need for the days following the race, to make the recovery as speedy and pain free as possible!

Have a great race!

A Case of Teenage Exhaustion

At this time of year, many students are suffering from exam stress and exhaustion.

Ryan and his mum came to see me last week, as a year 11 student mock exams were well under way and like many teenagers, Ryan was exhausted.  Since September, the school had increased the pressure to study and with weekends full of sports matches and no down time, Ryan’s body had run out of fuel.

Although there were no emotional signs of stress, sleep wasn’t a problem, although he said he sometimes felt too tired to sleep, appetite was the same, Ryan didn’t feel anxious or worried about the forthcoming year of exams, but his body was showing physical signs that it was under strain.

Ryan said his legs felt like lead, they literally didn’t want to move his body around and he generally ached all over.  He’d previously been to the doctors, who’d confirmed it wasn’t Glandular Fever, the obvious thought for most teenagers feeling unwell at this age, but still Ryan had struggled to get through a day at school since returning to the new term in September.

The picture Ryan was presenting with was that of the remedy Gelsemium, a remedy widely used for colds and flu, which has the mental dullness and aching body, which Ryan had come with.  I also gave Ryan a combination of Homeobotanical tinctures to boost his immune system, which had become compromised by the stress he was feeling.

Leaving the clinic room with a bag of remedies to take, Ryan was also reminded that he also needed to ensure his diet was full of good quality nutritionally dense foods and not just crisps and fizzy drinks.  With the majority of the immune system being based in the gut, the quality of our food significantly affects our body’s ability to fight illness.  Stress also has a detrimental effect on our immune system, so keeping ourselves emotionally healthy and letting others know when we are feeling stressed and anxious is important too!

Are you ready for the Homeopathic 1, 2, 3 to weight loss?

Are you ready for the Homeopathic 1, 2, 3 to weight loss?

As a Homeopath, I am often asked for a ‘magic pill’ by my patients, and although this can be for any number of reasons, the stand out request is for a magic pill for weight loss.

Generally, my response is, had I found a guaranteed weight loss pill, I would now be sat on a large yacht in Monaco, rather than a clinic room in Surrey.  However, there are certainly a number of things which can be considered, with the possible end result of dropping a few pounds and feeling a great deal healthier!

Weight gain can be as a result of many different factors, from a hormonal imbalance, menopause, stress, or just plain eating too much.  Yet it could often be as a result of the mineral balance in our bodies being wrong and therefore the metabolic process our bodies go through on a daily basis needs some help and support.

Of course the equation of calories consumed has to be lower than calories burned to guarantee weight loss remains a given, but by including just 3 minerals (referred to as tissue salts) in your daily diet will help remove toxins and in addition weight.

So let’s take a look at the 3 step plan to feeling better and looking great!

Every Morning

Nat Sulph – this tissue salt helps to regulate the fluid held in our bodies tissues, it helps to support the detoxification process and supports the liver, kidneys and gallbladder.

Midday

Kali Phos – known as the all-rounder, this tissue salt supports the nervous system thereby helping with physical and emotional exhaustion. Often by putting ourselves on a diet, we add to our daily stress levels, Kali Phos will help alleviate the stress and anxiety we place on ourselves.

Every Evening

Nat Phos – A great support for an over acidic digestive system, this tissue salt helps to regulate body fat metabolism.  It’s also a good remedy for any digestive complaint such as flatulence or acid reflux from eating rich foods.

As I said initially, there are many, many reasons why we gain weight and struggle to lose it and the above is a suggestion of how simple it might be to stop the dread of the bathroom scales.

I’d love to hear from you if you’d like support in improving your diet and lifestyle, so get in touch!

If you’d like more information on Tissue Salts, take a look at the Dr Schussler site

http://www.schuesslersalts.com/en/index.html

5 reasons to drink lemon and ginger in hot water

There are many benefits to drinking a mug of warm water with fresh ginger and lemon each day, here are a few that may help to convince you to add it to your own daily routine!

It Boosts Your Immune System: On top of the list of benefits of ginger lemon tea is its ability to strengthen your immunity. This is due to the presence of high levels of anti-oxidants in ginger. Lemons are an excellent source of vitamin C which can heal wounds and preserve the strength of bones and teeth. In the onset of cold and flu, the ginger lemon tea can act as an effective anti-biotic.

It Brings Instant Relief From Nausea and Indigestion: It eases the pain and uneasiness of an upset stomach. The ginger and lemon in the tea lowers the chances of heartburn and indigestion. It causes the food to be better absorbed by the body and prevents belching and bloating after eating too much. It improves your appetite as well.

It Lowers The Effects Of Diabetes: New research has thrown light upon the fact that drinking ginger lemon tea on a daily basis can reduce kidney damage that occurs due to the effects of diabetes. The high levels of zinc found in ginger play a prime role in the production and secretion of insulin. It is the insulin that controls the blood sugar levels and keeps diabetes in check.

It Is Your One-Stop-Drink To Perfect Skin And Great Hair: ginger and  lemon are rich in anti-oxidants and vitamins which are beneficial for perfect skin, hair and health. They also help in improving your digestion

It Is The Apt Drink For Weight Loss: High blood sugar levels trigger cravings for carbohydrates and fatty foods. Ginger helps to normalize these sugar levels which otherwise can affect your ability to lose weight or eat healthy food. Ginger also improves fat absorption and prevents it from accumulating in the body. Both ginger and lemon have anti-inflammatory properties that prevent inflammations and enhance the activity of the liver that helps in shedding those extra pounds

“Aargh! I’ve Got Another Cold Sore”

“Aargh, I’ve got another cold sore” is something I hear regularly in clinic, mostly because word has got out that I’ve had so much success in curing them, thanks to my all singing, all dancing box of tricks!

Cold sores are in fact the herpes virus (also in this family are chicken pox, shingles and mononucleosis), which can flare up in times of stress, a low immune system, hormonal changes, sunburn or a cold/flu.

Sufferers can generally ‘feel’ a cold sore (also known as fever blister) forming as they get a sensation of tingling in the spot where the blister will appear.  A couple of days later, a raw open sore will appear, which will crust over.  This blister may last a few days or even weeks and can cause real discomfort as well as making the person feel self-conscious.

As a viral infection, the use of antibiotics isn’t available and many people who come to me have tried all of the over the counter medications and found no long term relief.

Roll out the box of tricks!

Over the last few years, I’ve successfully helped a number of people who have suffered from cold sores for years.  All of them are now cold sore free and remain amazed that within 3 months of treatment, the virus that has plagued them for years has gone.

Homeopathically, each of my patients are given an individualised bag of remedies to take to alleviate the symptoms they have.  Typically these are remedies such as Rhus Tox, which is used for fever blisters around the mouth and Nat Mur a remedy for red inflamed skin and watery blisters.

Alongside this, each patient is given a combination of Homeobotanical remedies in a tincture to support the skin, immune system and anti-viral support.

Finally and most importantly, each patient is given a 3 month supply of Red Algae from Platinum.  Red Algae, found in the 1970’s has been developed into a supplement which assists the body’s immune response and plays a major role in preventing the recurrence of viruses.

http://www.platinumuk.biz/wisehealth/product/2510e

This supplement has been the big game changer in supporting patients with any form of viral condition.  Even patients with colds and flu viruses have reported how quickly their symptoms are reduced from taking this medicinal supplement.

So that’s my three pronged approach to helping patients become cold sore free, often for the first time in years.  Let me know if you’d like some help in becoming free from them too.