It’s the silly season, so here are a few tips to reduce your hangover!
Aside from stating the obvious, yes, avoiding drinking alcohol is the best way to avoid a hangover!
Drinking alcohol can lead to the following symptoms, such as dehydration (which causes thirst, dizziness and weakness), irritation of the stomach and liver (which causes nausea, vomiting and stomach pain), low blood sugar (which causes fatigue and mood changes), and disturbance of sleep (which causes ‘jet lag’ symptoms).
Preparation is the key!
A complex vitamin B supplement and herbal detoxification tablet than contains St Mary’s Thistle (aka Milk Thistle), Schizandra and/or Rosemary before drinking and when you get home will help your liver detoxify the alcohol more efficiently. Other important nutrients include magnesium, zinc, selenium and essential fatty acids. Best to line the stomach, especially with healthy fats, in the Mediterranean, they use olive oil.
The choice is yours!
Choosing alcohol with fewer congeners (a by-product of the fermentation process that provides a unique taste), such as gin and vodka, may cause fewer hangover effects than alcohol with more congeners, such as brandy, whisky and red wine.
Drink alcohol in moderation and ensure water intake while drinking alcohol, and again before going to sleep will also help!
But what about the morning after?
You work long, tiring days trying to meet deadlines, keeping your social life active, making sure you’re a conscientious member of your community and making sure your family’s needs are being met, only to go on a well-deserved holiday and spend most of the time in bed with the flu! Why is it that you managed to hold everything together and the moment you relax and take a holiday, you get sick?
The answer may lie with Psychoneuroimmunology – the study of the interactions between psychological process, the nervous system and immunity. Research has found that when we are stressed, whether it be for only a few minutes (acute stress) or for days or longer (chronic stress), our immune system experiences a complex array of chemical and hormonal changes. The immune system forms part of our bodies defence system. It provides response to internal dangers such as tissue damage and the threat of infection and disease and providing our body with this defence takes a lot of energy. When we are fighting infection or disease, our desire to engage in other activities such as socialising, eating and engaging in hobbies is diminished. [read more....…]
Sick of getting sick all the time?
Boost your Immune system by testing and correcting your nutrient deficiencies.
Do you always get sick during the winter months or pick up whatever is going around the office / home? Have you ever wondered why you get sick more often and take longer to recover than those around you?
There are ways you can prevent this from happening this year. You could be deficient in the vital nutrients which your immune system relies upon to build immune fighting cells.
Did you know that Naturopaths can request blood tests for you to pick up deficiencies that could be leaving you open to a weaker immune system? [read more....…]
The gut and brain talk and sometimes it’s not pretty
For years Naturopaths have talked of the gut-brain connection. How the health of the gut health will influence mood and mood will influence the gut. With the increase in research into the interplay between humans and bugs – the human microbiome – comes some really exciting findings that back this traditional concept. Though more research is required to get all health care professionals on board, it may not surprise you that many people have made this connection for themselves. They work to set their gut and mind up to talk nicely to each other for happiness and best of health.
The balance of the bugs
It is said that our body has 10 times the number of bugs than human cells and 150 times as many genes – wow that’s a lot of bugs. Now before you start scratching and head for the shower, know that when the bugs play nicely together they support our health in a wide range of ways. It is only when the bugs are out of balance that things go array, including negatively impacting your mood.
Research has shown the link between the overgrowth of specific bugs and an increased prevalence of anxiety, an increased sensitivity to pain, memory dysfunction, autism, IBS – irritable bowel syndrome – and IBD – more serious inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. This list melds both conditions of the mind and of the gut and supports the gut-brain link. [read more....…]
Mindful eating focuses on the increasingly important roles of mind and spirit and their contribution to our eating habits and choices. In regards to our digestion, it is becoming more essential to consider not just WHAT we are eating but HOW we are eating, and it’s impact on our digestive function. By looking at diet and digestion from this new perspective, we can begin to establish a brand new relationship with our mealtimes and the food we eat.
Digestion is the process of breaking down, absorbing and assimilating food and the nutrients it contains. What happens when your digestive function isn’t working as optimally as we need it to? You can experience a multitude of symptoms that can include cramping, bloating, abdominal fullness, reflux, indigestion, constipation or diarrhoea; or a combination of these. So how much of this has to do with what you are eating and how much has to do with how you are eating it? Digestion can be affected by many different factors including poor diet choices, medications and food intolerances to name a few; but two of the biggest and often overlooked contributors to digestive dysfunction are stress and speed. [read more....…]
As a Naturopath, I’m not scared to talk about poo, bloated bellies, or farting. Sounds gross and like something you don’t want to talk about, but the fact is, 1 in 5 Australians will have IBS throughout their lives and need help fixing it.
Good digestion is the key to good health – a fact we’ve always innately known and this has become part of our vocabulary with old sayings such as “you are what you eat.”
If your belly isn’t happy – your body is sending you a signal that you may not be digesting and absorbing your nutrients properly. Healthy clean eating and super foods have become mainstream,, which is brilliant for health. But if you’re not digesting your food well, then you could be eating the worlds cleanest, healthiest diet, but you won’t optimize the nutrients from it, which are needed to keep your energized and prevent disease. So if you think things may not be working so well in the belly department, it’s time to listen to your body and learn about what your tummy is telling you!
- Abdominal bloating and discomfort
- Changeable bowel habits – alternating between constipation or diarrhoea.
- Stool habits change – watery, loose, nuggety, thin ribbons.
- Feeling of discomfort after eating & food sensitivities
- Feeling of urgency – needing to go to the toilet often or feeling not fully evacuated when you empty your bowels.
Addressing preconception health will have lifelong benefits for you and your child.
Factors that may affect fertility include:
- Poor diet and nutrition
- Increasing age
- Immune system status
- Drugs (including caffeine, tobacco and alcohol)
- Previous contraceptive history
- Genitourinary infections (eg Chlamydia, Mycoplasma)
- Reproductive conditions (eg endometriosis, PCOS)
Fertility problems are due to male reproductive health about 40% and the female about 40% of the time, with both partners reproductive health implicated in the remaining cases. [read more....…]
Paleo has been creating a huge buzz in the health and fitness community for the last couple of years now. Paleo is short for Palaeolithic Diet; also commonly known as the Caveman diet. The philosophy is based around the principles of eating the way our early ancestors did in the Palaeolithic era, before farming and industrialization. The foods you eat are the only ones that would have been available through hunting and gathering; specifically meat, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds; excluding dairy, grains, legumes and any foods grown through modern day farming or processing practices. There is a myriad of resources available these days to set you on the path to this style of clean eating, but what happens when these resources become so overwhelming you just don’t know where to start? Questions start running around your head like – Why would I choose to eat like this? Do I have to give up foods I love? What are the benefits of eating this way? Fear not and read on, I’m about to give you 3 benefits of the Paleo diet that can help you decide if this eating style is right for you: [read more....…]
Stress is something that we all experience to varying degrees throughout our life. One type of stress, known as eustress, is actually a positive type of stress and is used to help us achieve our goals in a positive and productive way. But what happens when the pressure and worry of everyday life starts to get on top of you? For some it might be work, for others finances; assignments, family, health – you name it, it is probably on someone’s list as a source of worry and frustration. The stress response that our bodies go through was designed millions of years ago to prepare ourselves for what is known as “fight or flight” – as in, do we stay and fight the dinosaur that’s about to attack or do we run away from it and hide in our cave? Now these days there are no dinosaurs stalking us but there are plenty of situations that can trigger the nervous system to prepare for this “fight or flight” response. And it’s when this survival system is triggered on a daily, weekly and monthly basis that our minds, bodies and spirits start to suffer and break down. [read more....…]
Every time I turn around there is more research being published which shows the impact, therefore importance, of the microbes (let’s call them bugs from now on) in your body. It’s not surprising when it is thought that the genes of bugs outnumber our own genes by 10 to 1 – i.e. there’s a lot more of them than us in our body. Much of the research has been on the impact of bugs on our immune system but now there is a wave looking at the role of bugs in food choices and weight management.
A paper published in the journal Bioessays in 2014 entitled “Is eating behavior manipulated by the gastrointestinal microbiota? Evolutionary pressures and potential mechanisms”* suggests that our gut bugs can drive our food choices as a way to help them stay strong with the goal to conquest and take over the gut. It’s suggested that they may do it in two ways: [read more....…]