Claridge Naturopathics Blog


May 30, 2016
GET THAT BODY MOVING

TIME FOR A WALK

Author: Emma Wisbey

 

Winter is a more sedentary season however a simple walk can be more than just keeping active. Believe it or not the health benefits of walking are scientifically proven. And to make it even easier for you, I’ve analysed some recent research to show you just how healthy walking can be:
• Reduces your risk of stroke
-A study published in 2014 found a direct link between time spent walking and a reduced risk in the onset of stroke.

• Improves sleep and mood
-A study published last year linked increased physical activity with better sleep and mood.

• Lowers risk of diabetes
-A study in China published this year found that subjects who walked regularly had better glucose control than participants who were inactive. And furthermore walking may be superior to ameliorating insulin sensitivity than extreme exercise.

• Strengthens your bones
-In 2015 a study conducted on 120 female patients concluded that walking amongst other healthy behaviours resulted in an increase in bone density furthermore lowering osteoporosis risk.

• Drastically lowers risk of obesity
-A recent study of children found that the prevalence of obesity was significantly lower in those that participated in a walking program than those that did not.

So I think the results are conclusive, at any age or stage of life you can't doubt the benefits of a nice long walk. Don’t let Winter deter you… why not go for a walk today?


May 19, 2016
Nutritional Supplements

NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS

If you’ve been watching television this week you may have noticed the barrage of anti- supplement sentiment being aired on the ABC (Four Corners) and Channel Ten (The Project). Given that there was no nutritional expert interviewed in either shows, we feel that it is only fair that we have a right of reply. Given her 15 year experience at Bioconcepts, a leading Australian Practitioner only Supplement Company, we thought one of our Naturopaths Emma Wisbey was suitably qualified to comment:

It was disappointing to note that sensationalism once again trumped the truth in both of the TV shows. Before you become caught up in the hysteria of the information presented it is important to qualify some important facts.

• The program and interviews were adapted from an American report and this is a very different country when it comes to manufacturing and regulatory controls of supplements. In the US such products are regarded as foods and do not adhere to the strict guidelines that we have here in Australia set out by the TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration). In Australia we must adhere to GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) and this ensures that strict quality and safety regulations are enforced. Our products here in Australia are listed as therapeutic goods and it must be highlighted that these are very different to food supplements.

• The TGA here in Australia oversees the manufacturing of supplements as therapeutic, pharmaceutical like substances and they ensure that all suppliers are fully accountable for everything including the health claims that can be made about a product. Research must be supplied to the TGA to make any type of health claims and these claims are registered with the product. This ensures that reliable evidence based natural medicines are available to be prescribed by practitioners.

• In fact the Australian regulatory regime is so strict that we are viewed as an industry consumer protection benchmark by many countries worldwide.

• It is true that natural medicines are powerful and need a fully qualified practitioner to determine whether or not it is appropriate for you to take. Many factors play a role in the prescription process including not only your presenting condition but also other medications you may already be taking as well as your overall health etc. Therefore it is true that it is not wise to self-prescribe. In clinic we also carefully select which products we range based on their synergistic formulae, the research behind it, as well as being supplied by a brand that we know and trust. So you should always refer to your practitioner when determining if and when you need supplementation.

• Purchasing products online and having them shipped to you from overseas is dangerous in that different countries have different regulations. And as previously mentioned those regulations here in Australia are second to none meaning our products are by far superior.
Overall it is not fair or realistic to form opinions on the efficacy of supplements based on the very biased rehashed American story. We are only too happy to assist with any questions that you might have. But in the meantime I hope we have assisted in giving you knowledge about our industry here in Australia.

Kind regards, 

Emma Wisbey 

 

A little extra from Rob:

I wasn’t going to get caught up in the whole injustice of the biased reporting in these two shows, however, I do have just a couple of points to make. As mentioned in Emma’s reply we are lucky in Australia to have a world leading regulatory body to oversee all Australian made supplements. Furthermore, we Naturopaths apply an even higher standard to the quality of our “practitioner-only” products so that you can receive the remedies most aligned with the scientific evidence and your specific needs. The implication that supplements have no value and are not backed by science is in short a lie. It is true however, that due to the cost of scientific studies and the inability to patent plants*, where the majority of our supplements come from, there have been less studies completed on natural remedies compared to drugs. Out of curiosity I went to PUBMED to see the comparative number of scientific studies on herbs compared to drugs. (I particularly chose herbs due to the insinuation of their dangers by the TV reporters). The ratio was 1,239,591 drug studies : 9786 herb studies or 127 : 1. If the historical risks showed that herbs were dangerously impacting our health this discrepancy in the studies would’ve been of concern. However, a 2012 study from the UK put risk of mortality from herbs at less than 1:10,000,000 compared to deaths from adverse pharmaceutical reactions at 1:1000. In other words, the risk of dying from adverse pharmaceutical reactions was 10,000 X greater!!! 

So the good news is that your risk in taking supplements is minimal and despite the fact that the scientific evidence is still lagging behind the empirical evidence, you are not being scammed. The truth around supplements is that they are safe and effective when they are indicated. In other words, if they are prescribed in the correct forms, in the correct doses and in the correct circumstances they can appear magical. The problem is that when you use them and test them according to the “Drug Model” - where one size tends to fit all - there will be some discrepancies. Our Naturopathic doctrine is to appreciate the uniqueness in all and to therefore, custom build our prescriptions factoring in everything from genetics to lifestyle and past history to environment. Only then can you see the predictable and health promoting effects of supplements and how their short term inclusions can bring about long term effects!

Yours in good health,

Rob Claridge

*-leading to a much lower return on investment.


May 16, 2016
TAKING YOUR POWER BACK

TAKING YOUR POWER BACK

Last month Specialist Naturopath held a wellness workshop Taking Your Power Back. She shared her wisdom around the topic of energy and put together this helpful checklist. 


May 16, 2016
Anxiety

ANXIETY

Author: Emma Wisbey 

According to beyondblue, mental health is about wellness as opposed to illness. Further, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) mental health is defined as “a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”

As far as anxiety goes, it is normal for the body to at times feel stressed, worried or anxious, usually in response to an event or circumstance. However, if the event passes and these feelings don’t subside you may be suffering with some ongoing anxiety. According to Australian authorities in mental health, 1 in 6 Australians are currently suffering with anxiety. And it can be caused by various ongoing life stresses such as grief/loss, employment, financial strain, family, relationships the list goes on. But did you know that ongoing ill health may also contribute to your anxiety? For example hormonal imbalances (eg. thyroid issues), diabetes, asthma and heart disease have all been linked to anxiety.

There is much that can be done in the clinic to address anxiety and these days we are spoilt with numerous resources that all assist us in supporting your mental health and wellbeing. But of equal importance is teaching YOU how to cope with the pressures of modern day life. The following strategies might assist in getting you started:

1. RELAX
This sounds so much easier than it really is, especially if you are prone to anxiety. My advice would be that relaxing could be as simple as doing something you enjoy such as taking the kids to the park or a hobby that you love. Relaxation is defined as “the state of being free from tension” so basically anything that allows you to switch off and enjoy life in the moment can certainly be considered as a form of relaxation.

2. NOURISH
Ensure you give your body what it needs to get through each and every day. Too often I hear that people are too busy for lunch or cant stomach breakfast. But you would never drive your car without petrol so don’t do it to your body! In times of stress your body actually has a greater need for nourishing food. Without the required fuel (nutrition) your nervous system risks going into overdrive and this will increase secretion of stress hormones such as cortisol, which in itself can exacerbate the symptoms of anxiety. Also eating balanced nutritious meals makes you less likely to lean on stimulants such as coffee or sugar as quick fixes for energy. Both of which also have a detrimental effect on the body’s ability to cope with stress.

3. ACTIVITY 
Be active each and every day and also be aware that this is different for every individual. For some this will mean daily exercise (eg. going to the gym or for a run), for others it can simply be daily movement (such as a leisurely walk or practicing yoga).

4. LEARN FROM CHILDREN
Children can teach us so many things about dealing with life. I love that kids will run until they can't breathe, laugh until they fall over and even cry or throw a tantrum when they are upset. And if truth be told these are all valid outlets for stress, tension and even anxiety. Therefore it is important as adults that we don’t lose the ability to do some of these things. So make sure if you are upset you have an outlet and don’t bury your feelings, or conversely ensure you regularly spend time with friends to ensure you have a good laugh or at the very least a chat.

5. SLEEP
Ensure you get adequate sleep every night. Again just like children we need to teach ourselves to sleep. If you’ve suffered with insomnia as part of your anxiety don’t worry it will take time to retrain your body how to sleep. Try going to bed just a little bit earlier each night and create a night time ritual that allows you to start to unwind before you get into bed. Darkness is also important in ensuring the body makes melatonin (our sleep chemical), so also be sure to sleep in a dark room and refrain from bright lights including TV and computer screens in the lead up to going to bed.

6. LISTEN
Finally, start to listen to the clues your body is giving you. Constant worrying thoughts, insomnia, shortness of breath, ongoing confusion or brain fog, hot sweats, daily headaches (the list goes on) are not normal in a healthy person. These are all signals from your body that something is not quite right. And you don’t need to put up with these things no matter how minor you think they are. If you think you are suffering with anxiety and have any of these symptoms on an ongoing basis it might be time to speak to a health professional that has the tools to help you live a happier and healthier life.

Anxiety can be overwhelming and hopefully these strategies will assist in moving you in the right direction. At the clinic we are more than happy to assist you in eliminating your underlying health issues that might be leading to symptoms of anxiety. And if you feel your symptoms require additional support beyondblue is an excellent national support service and resource for anxiety patients. In the meantime look to the sky, take a deep relaxing breath and remember that although “everyday may not be good there is something good in everyday.”


May 16, 2016
Mind, Body and Soul

IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN 

Author: Emma Wisbey 

Contrary to this mild Autumn weather, Winter is on its way. And with this transition into the colder months sometimes our mind, body and soul can suffer. Here are some of my favourite tips to embrace the cooler weather and ensure you are feeling resilient throughout the season.

MIND:
• Mood – with shorter days and more darkness during winter the human brain can be prone to depression and changes in mood. If you are prone to feeling flat in the colder months try to avoid over sleeping and over eating. Limit time spent on computer screens. And curb your consumption of refined carbohydrates. All of these things are more easily habit forming in winter. And all of these things may have a negative impact on different chemicals in the brain that deal with your mood.

BODY:
• Let food be thy medicine 
-Winter is lovely time to experiment with cooking, and soups and broths are an excellent way of packing a nutritious multivitamin into your body by way of a meal. Even better if you can use immune boosting ingredients such as garlic and turmeric. You can also cook batches in advance for an easy midweek meal. 
-Use herbs and spices. There are many herbs and spices available to us that naturally have a warming nature. Things such as chilli and ginger promote circulation and by improving circulation in the colder months (when the cooler temperature can cause your blood vessels to constrict), allows for a more generous blood supply to every part of your body including all of your vital organs
• Move – just because its cold wet and windy doesn’t mean your body stops needing to exercise. Being active ensures optimal circulation but also has both immune and mood boosting benefits. All things that we need to ensure throughout the winter months.

SOUL:
• Smile – even if you are not a fan of winter, find things you enjoy in the colder months. For example you may love going to the beach in summer and guess what…that doesn’t need to stop. Sure you may not want to swim or surf but why not go and enjoy a walk in that place that makes you happy.
• Fresh Air – so many people complain of cabin fever in the winter months but if truth be told a bit of rain never hurt anyone. Pull on your boots, grab a brolly and go outside. Its remarkable what getting outdoors and breathing in the fresh air can do for the soul at any time of year.


March 29, 2016
VARIETY

EXPOSURE TO BOTH DISEADE AND ALLERGENS IS HOW OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM BUILDS RESISTANCE

Author: Emma Wisbey

Variety_is_the_key_web.jpg


Did you know that a healthy diet for you and your family is not always about limitations and restrictions? That’s right….there is proof that a healthy diet can be about variety. Recent studies have been published linking lowered food diversity in the childhood diet with allergic complaints such as hayfever, asthma and atopic dermatitis. It is a known fact that exposure to both disease and allergens is how our immune system learns to build resistance. One particular trial has found that diversity of diet is inversely related to childhood asthma, allergies and food sensitivities. Studies such as these bring us to the conclusion that a varied diet with exposure to numerous foods and nutrients is best for pregnant mothers, their infants and furthermore children.

Just another reason why balance is the key. So enjoy food with your little ones and stop stressing about what to take out, and rather consider what healthy foods to put in. The more your kids try, the more diversity they will be exposed to and chances are they will consume many more micro and macro nutrients.


March 29, 2016
Prescriptions

THE RIGHT PRESCRIPTION...

Author: Emma Wisbey

The_right_prescription_web.jpg

 

Did you know that not all natural medicines are created equally? And it is not simply a case of something being safe to self-prescribe because it is “natural”. As specialist naturopaths, when you visit us at the clinic, we tailor make your health program and/or prescription to suit your individual needs. I believe it is what sets our healthcare profession apart, that is that we acknowledge that not one size fits all.

I have been fortunate enough in my career in the natural therapies industry to have spent 10 years working with a leading Australian nutraceutical company. And this experience often assists me in educating my patients on the quality of products in our dispensary here at the clinic. What many patients don’t realise is that the products that we stock are hand-picked by our practitioner team to ensure you not only receive the best quality but also most value when being prescribed a therapeutic. 

You may have noticed that many vitamin, mineral and herbal supplements are now readily available at the pharmacy, health food store and even your supermarket, as well as all sorts of things being marketed online. But did you know that the quality and manufacturing of these retail brands can be quite different to those in our practitioner ranges at the clinic?

For example, a product might appear to have a long list of nutritional ingredients but do you truly understand the forms? For example, a cheap way to supplement magnesium is as magnesium oxide. However this is not the best form to ingest and it can severely upset your bowel. Additionally, different forms of magnesium are specific for different therapies. For example, magnesium orotate has been highly researched for cardio vascular health whereas magnesium citrate is an easily digested form of magnesium that is ideal for sensitive patients. As we speak our dispensary stocks no less than 10 different magnesium formulas, simply because as I mentioned earlier one size does not fit all patients.

What you may also not realise is that in manufacturing any of these products the process involves the addition of excipients (ie additions to the formula that assist with taste, dissolvability, shelf life etc). In Australia, it is not compulsory to list these additional ingredients and this in itself can reek havoc with your health. Some brands that have the tick of approval of gluten free, vegetarian friendly and the like may not be as good as their labelling suggests. These products often have hidden nasties such as artificial sweeteners or foaming agents such as sodium lauryl sulphate. Obviously all things we need to steer clear of in prescribing the best quality product for your needs.

Many people are under the impression that something can be cheaper if purchased online or at a discount store but the cost to your health can be enormous. As cheaper may mean poor quality raw ingredients, hidden excipients (additives and preservatives), or no cofactors ie the other nutrients required for optimal assimilation and therapeutic effect. The other factor is that as your body changes and heals your nutritional needs will also change. Therefore you may not necessarily need to take your prescription long term. So in the long run you are always best to seek professional advice regarding anything you wish to take. And we will be only too happy to help sort the chaff from the hay.

If you are interested in the rationale behind practitioner prescriptions stay tuned for my upcoming post on Fish Oils. This nutrient is by far one of the most highly prescribed nutritional products in the world, but as you might now imagine there is a vast array of both quality and purity.


March 29, 2016
FISH OIL

SO WHAT'S GOING ON WITH FISH OIL?

Author: Robert Claridge 

fish_oil_web.jpg

It is interesting to note that a number of recent studies on the use of fish oil for cardiovascular health have had different outcomes to earlier, more favourable, studies. So what’s going on? I had a look at the contrary findings and found a glaring error in the science! The researchers didn’t account for the use of statin drugs in their trial population. Statin drugs are the most common prescription for cardiovascular disease in the western world and, despite lowering cholesterol, (which is a whole different discussion), they also negate the effect of fish oil.  

At the time of the earlier, more favourable, studies statin drugs were not as prevalent and therefore, would not have had the degree of negative influence. Given such, it is obvious that fish oil would have had a much better chance of proving its effectiveness at this time. 

How could you expect an effect from the tested item if it is being blocked in the test environment????? Given that inflammation is the major cause of cardiovascular disease and fish is a safe, yet powerful anti-inflammatory, I’m still sticking with my fish oil!!!


March 29, 2016
FACTS

FACT FRIDAY

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1. Lack of exercise is now causing as many deaths as smoking across the world.

2. People who regularly eat dinner or breakfast in restaurants double their risk of becoming obese.

3. Laughing 100 times is equivalent to 15 minutes of exercise on a stationary bicycle.

4. Sleeping less than 7 hours each night reduces your life expectancy.

5. One can of soft drink a day increases your chance of getting type 2 diabetes by 22%.


March 7, 2016
Men's Health

MEN'S HEALTH

Author: Robert Claridge 

Man, are you okay?

 

When I open my doors each day the majority of people that walk through them are women. Women see their health as a priority and are willing to invest time, effort and money into it. So despite the fact that men have unique disease tendencies, the main issue that I see with men’s health is their general lack of awareness about their health. If you are not connected to your body, you will not hear its messages and therefore, miss out on the opportunity to take action when needed. In general, my male patients tend to only come to see me when the dam has broken. They seldom arrive with the mindset of prevention. And so I say to my fellow “Y chromosomers” - invest in an annual check- up and use it as an opportunity to reconnect to your health.


March 7, 2016
Eat a Rainbow

EAT A RAINBOW

Author: Lindsay Ingleton 

Eat a Rainbow


March 7, 2016
Surrender the need to control

SURRENDER THE NEED TO CONTROL 

Author: Emma Wisbey

Too Little Too Much

 

Starting the year at the clinic I was very quickly reminded of the enthusiasm many patients possess in order to get their health back on the right track. Lots of you naturally try different diets, and know that exercise is good for you and overall have some understanding of what needs to be done to stay healthy. But many people don’t realise that ‘control’ can also be extremely detrimental to one’s health. We are always assisting patients to acquire a balance, and this is why one size never fits all. For some people a dietary or lifestyle change is essential, however for others learning to relax and removing the stress (or in other words the need to be in control) is far more important than anything else.

Don’t get me wrong I’m all for being driven and in charge of your own destiny. Striving for the best and goal setting is important. But at what point do we let go of wanting to be so in control of everything? We are currently living in a competitive society of “go go go” and with this even the best intentions can be lost if we forget to stop and slow down. I know because this is by far one of the things I personally find the hardest to do to achieve ultimate health.

For example, do you ever forget to enjoy food because you are too busy counting calories or trying to follow the next fad diet? Or are you too busy following an exercise regime to stay fit that you forget to breathe and relax as often as you train? In everything we do as naturopaths, we are always referring to balance. But what can you do to achieve this?

Lets consider Newtons Law of Physics, the idea of “every action having an equal and opposite reaction”. This means that in every interaction there is a pair of forces acting. So if we are trying to acquire balance in energy, life and ultimately health I believe we need to look at both forces at play. Ensuring we measure both can be as simple as asking yourself two questions at a time...

Have I been active or exercised today AND have I relaxed today?
Yes I have a huge list of things to do this week AND have I left time to just be spontaneous?
Or even simpler, have I worked today AND just as importantly have I played?
I love the Finnish proverb that states “Happiness is a place between too little and too much.”
So I ask you to question yourself… Where do you sit on the pendulum of life and more importantly is your life balanced?


March 6, 2016
Type 2 Diabetes

TYPE 2 DIABETES

Author: Robert Claridge

One of the world's most common and costly chronic diseases is reversible!

 I watched ABC’s informative show INSIGHT on Tuesday night with much interest as it centred on the global pandemic - Type 2 Diabetes. 

The thrust of the program was a discussion around a breakthrough finding out of the UK that was proven to reverse Type 2 Diabetes. In simplistic terms, Type 2 Diabetes or insulin resistance is where the “insulin key” used to open the “door” to the cell to let nutrition in is not working effectively. This in turn leads to a decrease in energy and an increase in body fat –along with the development of a whole heap of other chronic consequences including cardiovascular disease (C.V.D.), Alzheimer’s disease and peripheral neuropathies. Not much fun!!

After observing the breakthrough improvements in Type 2 diabetic patients choosing to have bariatric surgery, (reducing the size of the stomach via banding or surgery), where the subsequent reduced calorific intake reverses their Type 2 Diabetes - Professor Roy Taylor postulated that a low calorie diet should also achieve a similar effect. In short, his study showed that after 8 weeks and a loss of approximately 10% of their body weight these patients had normal blood glucose regulation. 

Specifically, all subjects lost fat around their liver and pancreas and once returning to a healthy diet of appropriate calories and regular exercise were able to maintain their improvements without medication!

Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, (N.A.F.L.D.), is in plague proportions around the world. Given that blood glucose regulation depends on the health of the liver, (which makes glucagon a hormone that mobilizes stored energy into the blood stream), and the health of the pancreas (which makes insulin needed to move energy from the blood into the cells) - it’s not hard to see that if each of these organs are being “strangled” by fat then they are not likely to function properly. 

The exact strategy of the diet is to consume 800 calories/day from a specific list of low glycaemic index, (G.I.), ingredients that contain protein, carbohydrates and fat for an 8 week period. During this time it is important that you are well hydrated and do not exercise to exertion. It’s challenging –but there is no other therapy on the planet outside of surgery that can deliver this impact. It is also a lot less expensive and arguably has less long term side effects than surgical intervention. 

So what’s stopping Australian’s embracing this landmark finding? Perhaps the following observations might help to explain. 

1. Despite the amazing corrective impact of the “new science” explained on the show – some Type 2 diabetic patients said they would rather take a pill and endure the risks of the disease progression than change their lifestyle. (Short term pain for long term gain is not a pill easily swallowed by some).

2. It appears that the wheels of Diabetes Australia seem to turn very slowly as some of its advice was shown to be at best archaic but in all honesty wrong. This is a huge concern if the governing body is not accurately leading the way. Perhaps the fact that much of their sponsorship comes from big business- whose interests are more fiscally than factually driven might be part of the explanation. (Never let the truth get in the road of a good profit!)

3. Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease with a reasonably long lead time. The proposed 8-week corrective diet is a “drop in the ocean” compared to such an extended causative prelude. Yet there was argument and uproar that a patient should have to spend that amount of time treating the problem with lifestyle change. Even when the treatment reduces the long term burden the disease places on an individual’s health span and substantially reduces the national health budget. Go figure?

So it seems we have an answer for the reversal of what many experts see as the greatest burden to human health in the future. The question is, are we up to the challenge?


February 25, 2016
SLEEP

DO YOU HAVE TROUBLE SLEEPING?

Author: Emma Wisbey 

Do you have trouble sleeping?

Do you have trouble sleeping? Many people state that they have insomnia but did you know that there are 3 very distinct categories that all reflect completely different reasons for poor sleep? So firstly you need to know;

  1. Do you have trouble going to sleep?
  2. Do you have trouble staying asleep?
  3. Or do you wake unrefreshed?

Then within these parameters there are a multitude of other symptoms such as night terrors, snoring, teeth grinding, bed wetting, restless legs…the list goes on. And from a clinical perspective there are many different treatments we would consider once we have determined the underlying cause to your sleep disturbance.

What many people don’t realise is that sleep is as important to our health as diet, exercise, genetics and the like. At night when you sleep imagine your body is an office building, and when all the workers go home all your cleaners and maintenance people come in clean up and repair. During waking hours our body is predominantly catabolic, this means that we are metabolising or breaking things down whilst we are active. However whilst we sleep we are anabolic ie in a state building/repair . Therefore as you might imagine, poor sleep will influence your body’s repair processes and can furthermore affect your overall health.

It is suggested that as adults we get 7-9 hours sleep per night. Teenagers require 8-10 and primary school children  should be getting 9-11, with toddlers and pre-schoolers needing 10-14 hours. Obviously we require more when we are younger as these are our body’s developmental years. This is also why we feel the need to sleep when we are unwell, in order to repair and recover.

So as you can see, healthy sleep patterns are an important part of assessing your health. Some helpful tips that might improve your sleep include;

  1. Exercise – light exercise later in the day eg. walking after dinner or a gentle yoga class may help to burn off excess energy from the day but also assist in a deeper nights sleep.
  2. Routine & Environment – establish a routine to ensure you are rested and in bed at a reasonable time each night. This might be as simply as a warm bath/shower or a cup of relaxing herbal tea (eg. chamomile) closer to bedtime. Also ensure your bedroom is cool, dark and noise free.
  3. Avoid stimulants such as coffee, alcohol or heavy meals close to bedtime.
  4. Electromagnetic radiation – limit TV watching or using phones, tablets or computers immediately before going to bed. The light emitted from the screens of such devices is stimulating to the brain and can exacerbate symptoms of insomnia.
  5. De-stress – if possible don’t take worries or stress to bed. This may be achieved by writing a list of what needs to be done the next day, journaling if you need to let go of particular events, meditation to calm the mind, or simply chatting to a friend or family member about worries so you don’t take them to bed.

 


January 21, 2016
Detox

TIME TO DETOX?

Author: Emma Wisbey

Your Future Self

At this time of year many of you will have made New Year resolutions and hopefully that involves challenging yourself to lead a healthier and ultimately happier life in 2016. For some this might involve a detox. But what is a detox and where do you start? Unfortunately this is not a simple question and is like asking "how long is a piece of string?"

At Claridge Naturopathics we like to assess all elements to determine an individualised detox strategy, and yes this includes what is coming in through your diet. But food and diet is just the start. Detoxification is a very complex process that also involves looking at (but is not limited to) the following:

  • Assessment of your protective barriers- GIT, lungs and skin
  • Supporting your major detox organ- your liver
  • Ensuring your elimination pathways (bowel and kidneys) are functioning well
  • Consideration of cleansing the blood and lymph
  • Clearing stubborn stored waste such as heavy metals

 This is no small task and as you can see is not something that is easily replicated on your own. Therefore a good place to start, is to ask yourself: what is your body exposed to and would a detox or a lifestyle clean up benefit your overall wellbeing? What is getting in?

  • Are you eating poor quality foods?
  • Do you smoke?
  • Do your personal care items and cosmetic products contain lots of chemicals?
  • Do your cleaning products contain chemicals?
  • Are you exposed to electromagnetic radiation?

 The list goes on!

 Answering yes to such questions means that a detox is a good consideration for your health. And, we would always recommend you seek guidance from your healthcare practitioner at our clinic for a comprehensive and individualised detox program. But that said, there are lots of basic things you can do to get started.

FOOD THAT COMES FROM NATURE

Try to eat foods closer to their natural state. Chances are if it's found in nature it is better for you. Think fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, seafood and lean meat. Anything that requires intense manufacturing often has the addition of preservatives, flavours, colours and additives. All of these are harder for your body to digest and eliminate. A general rule of thumb is that if you don't recognise the number sequence or chemical name on the ingredient list, chances are your digestive system and body won't either.

H2O - THE WAY TO GO

Try swapping sugary drinks such as soft drink and fruit juice for water. And don't despair if you have tried this and found water boring. Simply adding a splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice not only adds flavour, but has health promoting benefits. Lemons are alkalising and can help to kick start both digestion and liver function. They also contain vitamin C, which supports your body's immune system. Frozen berries instead of ice are another consideration for jazzing up your water. Berries are full of antioxidants – which naturally “mop up” free radicals (our cellular waste)

MORE THAN JUST YOUR DIET

As previously mentioned, a detox can be more than just diet related. It might be that you need to let go of destructive behaviours such as smoking. Or for some people, a detox might be decreasing the number of hours spent looking at a screen. For example, after spending a day at work on the computer, you should consider limiting time in the evening spent watching television or on social media.

EXERCISE AND FRESH AIR

Detox strategies can also involve a commitment to exercise more. Our lymph system is a network of tiny vessels that act as a drainage system and keep our body fluids in perfect balance. It is also an important part of our immune system. But unlike our circulatory system which has a heart to pump blood through it, the lymphatic vessels rely on movement to keep things circulating and clean. Therefore exercise or at least more physical movement could be a simple way to get your lymphatics detoxifying. If exercising outdoors, you will also give your body a couple of extra vitamin D from the sun and oxygen in the fresh air you breath.

In a nutshell, anyone and everyone can adopt healthier habits and this in itself is a way of detoxifying your life. But for the best detoxification program for your individual needs perhaps consider a chat with myself, Rob or Lindsay. Think of it like taking your car to the mechanic for a service because it’s just too darn hard to attempt a DIY. We are well equipped with the tools, resources and research to ensure your "detox" is not only perfect for you but also highly achievable. Go ahead "do something today that your future self will thank you for".

 

 




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