Do you listen to what your body tells you? Do you nourish your body with all the right things? We are only given one; why do so many of us not cherish it and treat it with the respect it deserves.
I hear too many excuses from friends, family and clients – ‘they were on holidays so they thought that they should eat takeaway everyday’, ‘they work back a lot and there is just no other option but fast food’, ‘it’s to hard with the kids so I just cooked us all frozen chicken nuggets or fish fingers’. Your loved ones and your body are the most important thing, without them working properly it can mean disease, sickness or even death. So how do we not have enough time to treat it right?
If you want to enjoy ideal physical and mental health, personal and spiritual growth, balanced success in all aspects of your life and ultimately the realisation of your full human potential, then you must start with a solid foundation by providing the nourishment your body requires.
A healthy body is the essential foundation for everything else.
So how do we do this? My advice would be to forget about calories. Change the foods you eat! Eat as much as your body tells you to eat (really listen to your body). Change your foods to real, whole, non-toxic foods. Fruits and vegetables; and raw ideally. The real, whole, raw foods have the highest nutrient content (cooking and processing reduce the nutrient content).
Find ways to avoid toxins as much as possible. Team all the yummy fruits and veggies we have available with quality protein and lots of good fats! I’m talking about eggs, salmon, avocado etc. The list goes on.
All the good stuff! Yumo! We are so lucky to live in a country with seriously amazing produce, so eat it!
If we can make this change, then the body will be able to start operating as expected that is vitalised, healthy and vibrant. And there isn’t anything wrong with that!
Team all that amazing food with an exercise plan that suits you and your goals and there will be no doubt you will be feeling completely fabulous. With so much energy you will find yourself bouncing out of bed in the morning.
By Eryn Ford, founder of Mummy Physiques
Have a look at the pantries of What Can Eat for some great products to assist in the new Healthy You
#1 Bone Broth – broth contains collagen and the amino acids proline and glycine that can help heal your damaged cell walls. You can drink bone broth as you wish to assist with gut healing.
#2 Raw Cultured Dairy – contains both probiotics and SCFA’s that can help heal the gut. Pastured kefir, yogurt, amasai, butter, and raw cheese are some of the best.
#3 Fermented Vegetables – contain organic acids that balance intestinal pH and probiotics to support the gut. Sauerkraut, Kimchi, and Kvass are excellent sources.
#4 Coconut Products – all coconut products are especially good for your gut. The MCFA’s in coconut are easier to digest than other fats so better for leaky gut. Also, coconut kefir contains probiotics that support your digestive system.
#5 Sprouted or Activated Seeds & Nuts – chia seeds, flaxseeds, and hemp seeds that have been sprouted are great sources of fibre that can help support the growth of beneficial bacteria.
Also, consuming foods that have anti-inflammatory Omega-3 fats are beneficial such as grass-fed beef, lamb, and wild caught fish like salmon.
We strongly advise you to take a look at Lee Holmes book – Heal your Gut for recipes and visit the pantries of What Can I Eat as there are many suppliers manufacturing good quality Activated Nuts/Seeds, Coconut products, Broths and more here in Australia.
Resource: Dr Axe – Food for Medicine
As part of the ongoing amazing Gut Summit launched in January where 35 experts from around the world presented the benefits of addressing your Gut health being at the core of many chronic health concerns.
For Dr Josh Axe, is fast becoming one of the leading experts in healing leaky gut and irritable bowel.
His journey began when his mother became ill when he was a child. They were a family who thought themselves to be healthy and fit, so this was somewhat of a surprise. His mother’s health continued decline to a point where she was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 40. She commenced chemotherapy and proceeded to develop major digestive issues. According to Dr Axe his mother at one point would average 1 to 2 bowel movements a week for about 10 years.
Her health ailments ranged from constipation to autoimmune disease namely Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, food sensitive’s and depression.
Dr Axe introduced his mother to the concept of looking at the root cause of her illnesses instead of just treating the symptoms. They changed her diet radically and introduced vegetable juices and bone broths along with goat’s milk kefir.
After 4 months of implementing a radical natural holistic approach she returned to her oncologist to find that the tumor in her lung had reduced by ½ and within a year she was in remission.
She also found that her bowel movements started to become more regular, daily, and the symptoms to her other health issues started to disappear.
As Hippocrates said “All disease begins in the gut”.
In the medical world they are still denying the existence of leaky gut, so what exactly is it.
Dr Axe explains “Leaky gut is typically termed “Intestinal Permeability”. There are over 11 000 different studies citing and sourcing leaky gut syndrome or should I say intestinal permeability. “
Your digestive system is basically a barrier to your bloodstream from your mouth to your anus. It allows certain nutrients and microorganisms to go through to the bloodstream and certain things out.
When you have chronic inflammation of the lining of the small intestine, it’s similar to having a tear in your fishing net. Certain things start to pass through that shouldn’t be able to.
If we take a protein like gluten and put it into the bloodstream where it should never be, our body sets up a inflammatory response which over time can turn into these immune or even autoimmune reactions.
Essentially, Dr Axe explains, leaky gut starts off with that inflammation of the small intestine, those junctions get larger and over time it can lead to immune issues like food sensitivities and further down the road autoimmune-like conditions as well.
So the 5 top things you can do according to Dr Axe are:
- Remove the triggers.
- Consume Healing and therapeutic foods
- Change your Lifestyle
- Eat right for your Gut Type
Dr Zielinkski goes on to comment also about the onslaught of toxicity we are exposed to in our water, environments, food and personal care products.
Both Docors agreed that the first trigger is food. Food goes into our body on a daily basis, food can be our friend or our enemy.
One of the top foods to try and reduce or avoid is sugar. It is hidden in everything.
The number two food to avoid would be cows milk dairy which he suggests can be 26 times more inflammatory than gluten. In an average bottle of milk there are over 20 different medications and chemicals in our dairy supply.
3rd is gluten. We are eating foods today that are not properly prepared. Our ancestors used to sprout and ferment many foods prior to ingesting, traditionally for example sourdough and Ezekiel breads. This makes various foods easy to digest.
The last food Dr Axe believes is really adding to our leaky gut problems is GMO foods. Studies show that herbicides and pesticides do damage to the gut lining creating inflammation.
We will look next week at number 2 consuming healing and therapeutic foods to help heal the gut.
Ultimately though, we need to identify the foods that are the triggers and we believe the easiest, fastest and most effective way to do this is by taking a Bio Compatibility Test and finding out what foods your body is reacting to.
For more information on this interview or the Gut Healing Summit – click here
Did you know that products we use every day may contain toxic chemicals linked to women’s health problems, like breast cancer, reproductive harm like infertility and birth defects, asthma, and other serious illnesses? The good news is that Women’s Voices for the Earth has done the scientific research for you on effective ways to reduce your exposure to harmful chemicals in everyday products—and to get rid of toxic chemicals all together!
1. Make Your Own Cleaning Products
– It’s easy, fun, and cheap to make non-toxic cleaners from safe and effective ingredients like vinegar and baking soda.
2. Avoid Synthetic Fragrance
– Look for cleaners, laundry detergents, and personal care products labeled “fragrance-free” Warning: “unscented” does not mean fragrance-free!
– Discontinue use of air fresheners. Go to womensvoices.org for tips to reduce odors around the home.
3. Give Your Personal Care Products a Makeover
– Read the label to avoid chemicals like parabens, sodium laureth sulfate, and oxybenzone. Check the Skin Deep database at cosmeticsdatabase.com to find safer products.
4. Go “BPA-Free”
– Ditch the canned foods and opt for fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables instead.
– Seek out products from the few companies now using BPA-free can liners like Westbrae Natural, Hunt’s, Healthy Choice and H.J. Heinz.
– Look for plastics labeled “BPA-free.”
5. Watch Out for Triclosan
– Avoid anti-bacterial hand soap with triclosan listed on the label.
– Reduce your use of disinfectant products.
6. Choose Plastics with the Recycle Symbols #4 & #5
– Look for plastic products with these symbols signifying PVC-free plastics.
– Use glass jars or bowls to store food.
– Never microwave plastic.
7. Keep Chemicals Out of the House
– Take of your shoes before entering your house to avoid tracking in oils and chemicals from the street outside.
– Use a door mat to catch dirt at the door.
– Dust with a micro-fiber cloth or wet cloth and vacuum your house regularly (with a HEPA-filter vaccuum if you can).
8. Turn Down the Heat on Non-Stick Cookware
– Keep the stove at or below medium heat when using Teflon or non-stick cookware.
– Opt for cast iron or stainless steel pans for cooking when possible.
Visit our Personal Care/Home Care pantry for great toxic free products
Gastrointestinal or “gut” problems are a dominant feature in many chronic states of ill health including cancer, dementia, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.
Over the past 2 decades, gut issues have become epidemic in our children and co-exist or drive a range of childhood conditions including Autism, Allergies, ADHD, food sensitivities and other learning and behavioural disorders. Although gut problems do not stand alone as the only issues that need to be addressed, treating the gut is imperative as part of any treatment program. Gastrointestinal symptoms are diverse and include: bloating, flatulence, constipation, diarrhoea, poor appetite, cravings, stomach pain, smelly stools, faecal impaction, heartburn and reflux; as well as nutrient deficiencies and yeast, bacterial and parasitic gut infections.
When treating the gut, it is best to take a holistic approach. It is a very common trap to focus solely on the different pathogenic organisms, to chase symptoms, without addressing some of the fundamental issues that have led to the development of problems. It is important to take into consideration that infections are usually the result of lowered immune resistance and nutritional deficiencies. Only in a body that is depleted or weakened can a germ, virus, parasite or yeast gain a foothold. The aim of treatment therefore should be to strengthen and restore vitality to assist the body’s natural healing processes. Alongside vitamin and mineral supplementation, you should work to improve digestion, absorption and the assimilation of nutrients. Alongside antimicrobial and probiotic treatment, you need to change the environment in the gut and boost the immune system.
HEALING THE GUT
When healing the gut, we need to incorporate the following principles:
- Nutritionally restore vitality – remove problem foods, I highly recommend the Hair Test 500 to pinpoint exactly what foods are Friend or Foe using a Hair Sample. Also eliminate processed foods, foods with preservatives, colours & flavours and foods high in sugar. More importantly, add in healing foods and nutrient dense foods. The diet should consist of organic whole food where possible with a major emphasis on fresh vegetables and fruits – rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants, whole grains (gluten free), nuts and seeds and quality proteins. – A ‘Primitive’ or ‘Traditional’ diet that alkalises the body is recommended; lots of dark leafy greens, a range of meat, seeds and nuts and low fructose fruits. Vegetable juicing is good however don’t blend multiple vegetables; keep it to 2-3 with one fruit for sweeting. It is not good enough to leave in high sugar & highly processed foods (pastas, breads, cereals and sauces) even if they are gluten & casein free. The immune system, the brain, all the cells in the body must be nourished to restore the body’s vital force. Addition research has shown that various bacteria produce toxic metabolites with high sugar diets.
- Enhance the immune system – stimulate the body’s own innate ability to fight off infections. There are many very effective herbal remedies that assist immune function; I recommend a therapeutic range of products from Neways International
- Transfactor – for gut healing, to build your immunity, antibacterial and to boost your energy levels
- Probiotics – which benefit the immune system, stimulating antibody production and interferon synthesis. Boost your good bacteria levels as bad bacteria are a major contributor for people with food and chemical sensitivities
- Aloe Vera – to help put the fire out, soothe and nourish the stomach lining right through to your bowel. Aloe Vera is excellent in assisting with regular bowel function
- Feroxin – minerals are our bodies spark plug. Studies show we are very mineral deficient as a race. We need over 40 essential minerals each day for our body’s optimal function and we can only get these from our food. The shortfall is that some of the essential minerals are no longer present in our soils, so we need to supplement.
- Toxicity – research has also uncovered that continual exposure to thousands of chemicals found in our every day personal and home care products provide the body with an incredible challenge in the 21st century. A study in 1994 revealed that over 884 ingredients used in our personal care were know to be toxic and of these 314 cause biological mutation, 218 can cause reproductive complications, 778 can cause acute toxicity, 146 can cause tumors and 376 can cause skin and eye irritations. Click here to What Can I Eat and print the Bathroom card to help you to audit your bathroom and see what ingredients you were unaware of.
- Change the environment – make it difficult for the Unfriendly Faecal Organisms (UFO’s) to gain dominance or remain dominant. Some important principles involved in this step are outlined below.
CHANGING THE ENVIRONMENT
Clear out the garbage – Purge
Once we have got some gut repair happening we need to CLEAR OUT THE GARBAGE in a clogged up colon. If you try to kill UFO’s when there are impacted faeces, you will have limited success. Certain parasites, bacteria and yeasts will be protected somewhat from both the immune system and any antimicrobials you use if they are able to ‘hide’ under a layer of faecal matter. For successful treatment of gut infections, faecal matter must not accumulate in the bowel.
Regular bowel movements are important for the body to get rid of its garbage. The bowel should move AT LEAST ONCE per day – in the MORNING. The stool should be formed but not hard, lumpy or pebbly. It should be passed with no pain, strain, blood or mucus. It should not be sticky and should be a medium brown colour. There should be complete emptying. If faeces remain in the colon for too long (slow transit time), then the body reabsorbs much of the toxic matter that should have been eliminated contributing to autointoxication. Organisms thrive in this type of environment. Dietary changes, probiotics as well as other various herbal and homeopathic formulas can be used to assist in helping to restore regular bowel movements.
Alkalise – Green Qi
By alkalizing, we are aiming to ensure that the average pH of the body is alkaline not acid. Excessive acidity is a widespread problem in the Western world. Both modern lifestyle and diet promote acidification. In general, the current standard diet is primarily composed of acidic or acidifying elements (proteins, cereals, sugars). Alkaline foods such as vegetables are eaten in too smaller quantities; their alkaline content is insufficient to neutralise surplus acids. Furthermore, stress, nervous tension, noise and other pressures contribute to acidification through the physiological disturbances they create. In addition, heavy metal toxicity, certain infections and inflammation all contribute to acidity.
The acidification of the internal terrain is the source of many health problems. There are a number of effects that lead to illness. Firstly, the activity of enzymes is disrupted. Enzymes are the “worker drones” behind all the biochemical transformations that take place in the body and on which the proper functioning of the organs depend. Enzymes can perform their task correctly only in an environment with a clearly defined pH. Otherwise their activity can be disrupted or even cease completely.
Secondly, the body can become ill due to the harsh corrosive nature of acids present in excessive amounts within the tissues. Before they are neutralised by alkaline substances, acids irritate the organ with which they come in contact. Inflammation as well as lesions or hardening of the tissues can result. The fragile state of the tissues resulting from the invasive presence of acid makes them vulnerable to microbial or viral infection. This is aggravated by the fact that the immune system’s effectiveness can also be lessened by acidity. Additionally, various infections themselves such as Streptococcus-overgrowth can produce acidic by-products that can overwhelm the body’s ability to maintain balance and a vicious cycle is set up. This is a major factor in gut dysbiosis.
Many compromised individuals are acidic. When we are acidic we need to place a greater emphasis on alkaline foods (vegetables and fruits) . This can be easily achieved with a green Superfoods blend such as Green Qi which contains 25 vegetables in a unique blend.
Improve the Digestive Process
To improve digestion and absorption of nutrients, there must be adequate stomach acid. Many people have hypochlorhydria or low stomach acid. A study of autistic children found 62% had low stomach acid.
Adequate stomach acid is essential for protein digestion. Poor protein digestion leads to low levels of the raw materials our bodies need to make neurotransmitters, immune cells and so much more. Poor protein digestion is also associated with an increased susceptibility to food allergies and sensitivities.
Adequate stomach acid is essential for absorption of Folic Acid, B12 and minerals. When acid is inadequate, there are typically deficiencies in Zinc, Iron, Calcium & Magnesium.
Stomach acid is essential for proper functioning of the pancreas and liver/gallbladder. The acidity of the stomach contents triggers a signal for these two organs to do their work.
Stomach acid also provides the first line of defence against pathogenic organisms that may enter the body with our food. Most organisms cannot survive in the acid environment of the stomach.
Strategies to improve stomach acid:
- Reduce Stress – especially at mealtimes
- Provide essential nutrients: Zinc, Niacin, Magnesium, B6 Celtic Sea Salt & Potassium
- Bitter foods before meals e.g. olives, bitter lettuce & rocket
- Apple cider vinegar or lemon juice drink, in warm water before meals
- Neways Digestive Enzymes or Releaze for more severe reactions
- Herbal Bitters before meals:
- Enhance upper digestive function / improve assimilation of nutrients
- Stimulate appetite
- Increase flow of digestive juices
- Increase flow of bile
- Regulate secretion of insulin & glucagon by the pancreas & liver
- Stimulate repair of gut lining
- Improve the micro-environment of the gut
Digestive enzymes are important for improving the digestive process. They chemically breakdown food so that nutrients can be absorbed. These enzymes are produced in large amounts at different stages along the digestive tract, for example the digestion of carbohydrates requires enzymes from the mouth, the pancreas and the small intestine. Fat needs lipase from the pancreas and bile from the liver. Protein needs enzymes from the stomach, the pancreas and the small intestine.
People who have allergies and intolerances have insufficient enzymes. Signs of this are bloating, flatulence and pain particularly near the belly button. There may also be undigested food in the stool. Light tan or yellow ‘floaty’ stools indicate that fat digestion is poor. Supplemental digestive enzymes relieve symptoms and improve absorption of nutrients.
Balancing Gut Flora – Probiotics – Lacto Flora
Probiotics are essential both in supplemental form and in the form of fermented foods. The number of functions the gut flora fulfils is so vital for us that if the digestive tract got sterilised we probably would not survive.
One of the most important functions of the gut flora is appropriate digestion and absorption of nutrients from food. If you do not acquire normal balanced gut flora, then they you will not digest and absorb nutrients from foods well, leading to the development of multiple nutritional deficiencies. Certain species of gut flora actively synthesise various nutrients: vitamin K, folic acid, vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, CoQ10, various amino-acids and proteins, all of which can become deficient in an unbalanced gut. Restoring the beneficial bacteria in the gut helps to treat these deficiencies.
Apart from taking a vital part in nourishing the body, beneficial bacteria keep the gut healthy. Certain species coat the entire surface of the gut protecting it from invaders and toxins by providing a natural barrier and producing a lot of anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal substances. At the same time they provide the gut lining with nourishment. It is estimated that 60 –70% of energy the gut lining derives, is from the activity of bacteria, which live on it. An unhealthy gut lining will substantially reduce the body’s ability to absorb nutrients from food.
Additionally, gut flora are intricately involved in the functioning of the immune system. The beneficial bacteria in the gut ensure appropriate production of different immune cells. They also help balance the immune system. With dysbiosis the Th1 and Th2 arms of the immune system can get out of balance, contributing to Th2 overactivity. This causes the immune system to over-react to various foods and environmental stimuli leading to allergies.
The absence or greatly reduced numbers of beneficial bacteria in the gut flora leads to overgrowths of certain species of bacteria that produce toxins in these circumstances. These toxins can overwhelm the body’s natural ability to detoxify, which can contribute to the accumulation of heavy metals, pesticides & other environmental toxins as well as mimic certain food intolerances such as salicylate sensitivity. In effect the digestive system instead of being a source of nourishment becomes a major source of toxicity in the body. Alkalising & appropriate nutrition as discussed above are absolutely essential when working to restore a healthy balanced gut flora.
Another important issue to deal with when healing the gut is detoxification. This involves supporting the body’s natural detoxification systems. A discussion of this issue is too complex to address here. Treating bacterial & fungal overgrowths to reduce gut toxicity is an important part of this. In general more will need to be done…
“ It is a mistake, it’s half a therapy if you only treat the gut. The other half of the therapy is to detoxify.…..We have to get the toxins out to even allow the nutrients to get into the tissues. You can’t get the nutrients in there if they are full of poisons, you can’t get two things into one space.” Charlotte Gerson
Healing the gut is a complex process and there are many other important factors to consider. These are just a few of the fundamental issues that should be considered in any treatment program. Below is a table with some foods & wholefood supplements that can assist in gut healing. In summary you need to consider.
- Restore vitality
- remove problem foods
- Primitive diet
- Enhance the Immune System
- herbs, supplements, probiotics
- Change the Environment
- Clear the colon
- Improve digestion
- Restore beneficial bacterial balance (probiotics, fermented foods)
- Support detoxification
- Reduce exposure to Toxicity in your everyday products usage
- Specifics – Antimicrobials, antifungals, antiparasitics, nutritional supplements, anti-inflammatories, antioxidants.
- Wholefoods support overall vitality and in so doing aid in gastro intestinal healing
|Young Green Coconut
||Enzyme rich, Nutritive
||Anti-inflammatory, supports detoxification
Blueberry, Raspberry, Blackberry
|Nutritive, Alkalising, Support Detoxification, Promote healthy flora
||Nutritive, Enzyme rich, antioxidant
||Antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, Nutritive
|Chia Seeds (soaked)
Flax seeds (soaked)
|Nutrient Dense, Anti-inflammatory
||Nutrient Dense, Alkalising
For more information about the Hair Test 500 and products designed to help with gut health visit What Can I Eat.
It’s the age old question really that we intuitively know but have just really forgotten along the way. It seems that the supermarkets have forgotten as well but I don’t really claim to know the answer for the big chains as they struggle to keep up with supplying so many people. It is relatively easy for them to provide produce in season, but when it is out of season, that is when we need as consumers savvier.
However as consumers there is a huge move now towards knowing and understanding where our food comes from, how it is processed and what is the best option for our families.
The simple answer and reality if that fruit and veg is picked fully ripe fresh off the trees, ready to sell to customers. Supermarket produce is generally picked green to last on the shelf or stored in cool rooms for long periods. Produce can undergo additional processes such as waxing, fungicide treatments or gas ripening.
What you get when you buy directly from the farmer is as fresh as you can get it without having to grow it yourself. The time from picking to purchasing is minimal and you as a consumer can then be more confident that the fruit has had time to develop flavour and retains its nutrients. It’s super fresh, naturally ripe, naturally coloured, hand picked and packed and presented the way it is supposed to be.
This is optimal for farmers as well as they can control how their produce is handled and appreciated. Let me tell you farmers grow produce because they love it and generally have enormous pride in what they grown. It is very rewarding for them to see customers enjoying their produce, trusting them and coming back for more.
My final tip would be check out what is seasonal and try and stick to purchasing that produce only if you have to shop at the big stores. Make sure you check out where the produce is sourced from when it is out of season as we found out with the frozen berry scandal, produce that is sourced from other countries can go through different criteria to what our stringent standards are here in Australia. Discover where your local markets are and make your way there. You will quickly get to know your favourite store holders that you love and trust so the process becomes very quick each week.
For some great recipe ideas on what to use your fruit and veges for have a look at the cookbooks in our bookshop.
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