Herbal Medicine, Nutrition, Food, Lifestyle The Canberra Naturopath - Phone 0435 049 023
Renae Scott

Renae Scott

Manage Stress and Balance Your Hormones

The modern woman. What image does this invoke for you? That image could actually depend on what sort of day you are having, are you feeling like Wonder Woman today or having one of those overwhelming just trying to get through to the end kind of days? There are means to help balance those highs and lows, whether you are a teenager going through puberty, a young woman finding her place in the world, a busy new or established mum, or finding yourself transitioning into a new phase in the cycle of life. Sometimes small changes can make a big difference to your well being AND piece of mind. Make sure you are enjoying this precious life you have.

I have a couple of favourite quotes from years of watching kids movies that stick in my mind, Dory from Nemo (my all time favourite movie ever) singing happily ‘just keep swimming, just keep swimming’ despite the world crumbling before Nemo’s eyes, and the penguins in Madagascar ‘smile and wave boys, smile and wave’ oblivious to all else going on around them (pretty funny, but maybe you have to be there). These two characters seem to be able to sail through life unaffected despite all misadventures and mishappenings (AKA stresses!).

Wouldn’t you like to be like that?

Bit difficult though if you struggle daily, weekly or monthly with period pain, heavy bleeding or out of control MOODS! Moods are big aren’t they? Crazy how we can feel ready to take on the world one day and the next or a week later, be more than happy to curl into a ball and hide from the world. Or perhaps anger prevails and we lash out at those silly enough to say peepo or walk too close or dare even look at us.

Perhaps these symptoms for you have spiralled into a full-blown condition such as PCOS, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disorder, or uterine fibroids.

The fact is that the female endocrine system, your hormones, are not a segregated unit, but a part of a whole, and that would be you! Thus your hormones that determine your cycle and well being and state of mind may be affected by all: diet, stress, toxins, microbes/infections and allergens. If one aspect shifts slightly, a cascade effect can occur. This may sound scary or helpless, but I think it is good news. It means you can heal and repair, you can rebalance, YOU DON’T HAVE TO LIVE WITH THOSE DEBILITATING SYMPTOMS.

Too often I hear such things as ‘Oh that’s just normal, I have to take a day/s off work because my period is so heavy and painful’ or ‘my mum always had cycle issues, so that is just my lot in life’.

Your life does not have to be like that, you should not and do not have to live like this. Diet and lifestyle can make the biggest impact on these conditions, and in conjunction with nutrition and herbal medicine support big shifts in your well-being can be made.

A few ideas to get you started and thinking about making positive steps towards your wellness.

Stress

Stress can be the biggest disruptor of your hormones and digestive system. Sustained and elevated cortisol levels will affect your hormones. We all have stress. You may be a teenager dealing with exams and social pressures, women with work pressures and work environment stress, new mum stresses, relationship stress, caring for elderly parents. Making small steps to accept those demands but being able to put them into perspective and protect yourself can usually allow for better outcomes for all.

  • exercise, nature, fresh air - starting with as little as 10 minutes a day can make a shift to reconnect with the world around you, and get you out of your head and endless chatter. Even if it is stepping into your back yard, local park, looking up into the blue sky or trees and taking 10 long breaths and become aware of your surroundings

  • what is your thing? what do you enjoy doing? reconnect with something, an activity, that brings you joy, and do that once a week. knit, sew, read, walk, sport. It has to be your thing, something for you, it’s okay, you can do that!

  • establish a daily and weekly routine, this can set you up for more balanced day to day. An assessment of your day to day will help to make sure you can fit in the above 2 recommendations. Do you lose yourself down the rabbit hole of Facebook, instagram, online browsing? set time limits so that a quick 10 minute check on the phone doesn’t become 40 minutes

  • Sleep. We digest, rejuvenate, rebuild and rest during sleep. Everything can fall apart without sleep. Establishing the above recommendations into your daily routine will pave the way for better sleep. The sleep-wake cycle can be an elusive disrupted nightmare (pardon the pun) for some. Reducing your reaction to stresses in your life may be first step towards establishing your sleep. 

I have highlighted self-help stress techniques as often stress is the trigger for biochemical changes that will affect all, your digestion and your hormones, and hence YOU!

Diet and nutrition, herbal medicines, essential oils, teas will get you back on track and living the life you know you can. Come and see me to get your balance and life back. Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call if you have any questions.  I can help you at Nourish and Breathe.

See you soon!

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YOUR GUT - THE CENTRE OF YOUR UNIVERSE

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YOUR GUT IS THE CENTRE OF YOUR UNIVERSE

Your gut has a mammoth job!

Your Gut is the centre of your universe. Your Gut extends from your mouth right through your body to the point of waste elimination.

It must break down and sort through all that you ingest. Remove all that which is not required including toxins and move on to absorb nutrients that we do need, as well as be the barrier protecting us from armies of pathogens - viruses, bacteria, parasites.

Digestive Diseases: a Sign of Imbalance

Your gut is a large, complex and finely balanced system that keeps you well. No matter what you throw at it, your gut gets on with the job. Unfortunately, a lot of the time we take our gut for granted and don’t appreciate what it does for us and don’t treat it with the respect it deserves. Those that suffer from digestive disorders such as Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Celiac Disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, understand very well the importance of good digestive health and the impact that an imbalance of gut health has on every other aspect of your life.

The Gut-Brain Axis

Your gut is part of you and who you are. In fact, recent studies have shown links between gut health, in particular the bacteria (microbiome) of your gut, and emotional states such as depression and child behavioural disorders. It has been discovered that your microbiome produces serotonin, the neurotransmitter also made in the brain. This highlights the gut-brain axis connection and the association that good mental health requires good digestive health.

Your Gut, the Largest Immune Organ

Your gut is the largest immune organ you have and is responsible for filtering through infinite molecules and substances screening out, engulfing and processing pathogens to keep you well.

The Malnourished Gut

If your gut is under functioning the absorption of nutrients may not occur adequately and you may become malnourished even though you are feeding yourself healthy foods. Nutrient deficiencies can be prevalent in developed countries that don’t have starvation as a health issue. It is first world problem where both obesity and chronic health issues are on the rise. Foods that are highly processed and nutrient deficient in combination with a digestive system that is under functioning.

The Inflamed Gut

There are several areas where gut health may be compromised and can result in inflamed intestinal lining and gut dysregulation. This may lead to ‘leaky gut’ condition where the tight junctions between the cells of the intestinal barrier are allowing larger molecules and pathogens to escape and invade unregulated into our internal environment establishing and setting off immune reactions that may have systemic effects.

THE ROAD TO GOOD DIGESTIVE HEALTH

Feed your gut well with plenty of fiber and a diverse range of fresh organic vegetables, and reduce the exposure to harmful toxins.
Slow down and practice mindful eating, chewing your foods allowing digestive enzymes to be secreted.
Learn to identify and manage the stress that you experience as it has a direct impact on digestive health.

Take a moment to acknowledge all that your gut does for you and be kind to our gut, treat it well and your gut will return the favour and give you a long and healthy life.

Read more about your digestive health on N&B website here.

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Give Yourself a Break! Why you should Cleanse!

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Why we Cleanse!

Your wellness is your state of health and will determine how your body and its innate defences are able to deal with an invasion - be it a simple cold to a more sinister virus, pathogenic bacteria, exposure to a toxin, and stress. A life of clean nutrient rich foods, healthy lifestyle choices and mindful practices is the first step to ensure lifelong good health.

Toxicity

Awareness of the exposure and effects of toxins in everyday modern life is essential to understanding the impact of toxins on your health. This knowledge is just one part of your full health picture, but an essential part that must be addressed if you wish to live the life you want to, reducing the risks of developing chronic disease and healing some chronic conditions.

What are Toxins?

Industrial Pollutants, petrochemicals, heavy metals, pesticides, food additives, pharmaceuticals, cleaning products, hygiene products and cosmetics, plastic compounds.

Toxins are xenobiotics, chemicals that are not required in our everyday metabolic processes such as the production of cellular energy for growth, differentiation, and function.1 I think we sometimes forget that everything we eat, breathe or absorb must be dealt with by our bodily functions. The toxin does not just disappear or come out the other end without having had some impact on our internal environment.

Two to three thousand newly invented chemicals are released into our environment every year. Exposure to toxins is unavoidable due to the ever increasing presence in our air, water, soil and food. Toxins have been shown to interfere with enzyme function, cellular transport mechanisms and receptor sites, cause oxidative damage, block nutrient absorption and mimic hormones or neurotransmitters.

What is Detoxification?

Detoxification is the process of clearing toxins from the body and the body has a natural capacity to process toxins. Systems which carry out detoxification include digestion, lungs, kidneys, reproductive tissues and nasal epithelium. Toxins are neutralised and then removed via stool, urine and sweat.

Symptoms of Toxicity

Every cell, tissue and system in the body is susceptible to damage by these toxins, with symptoms ranging from headaches, fatigue, mood and behavioural disturbances, and directly related to cancers, neurological problems, fertility issues and birth defects.

Why do a N&B Cleanse?

Our natural detoxification system can become overburdened and compromised with the polluted environment and poor diet and lifestyle choices. A Cleanse program such as we do at N&B supports a period of good food choices, minimising exposure to toxins, eliminating negative lifestyle choices and implementing mindful practices. This allows the space to break old habits that are not supporting our health and allows for a period of healing to occur, supporting our natural organs of detoxification and elimination.

What You Can Do? The N&B Cleanse

3 Simple Steps

clean healthy lifestyle, fresh organic foods removing intake of food additives and pesticides
reduce exposure to everyday toxins - household pollutants such as cleaning products, personal hygiene products, makeup, plastics, gardening chemicals to name a few
Support and enhance the functioning of your body’s organs of elimination

Please read more about Detoxification on N&B website 

1. Croom, E. (2012) Metabolism of xenobiotics of human environments. Progress in Molecular Biology and Translational Science. 112:31-88. 

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The Modern Day Herbalist

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The Modern Day Herbalist

I am a naturopath and I am a modern day herbalist. I use Tonics and Remedies to heal and restore health. Herbal Medicine today is an integration of thousands of years of empirical evidence for the use of herbal medicine across many cultures AND science.

What is a Herbalist!

We all look different, but if you look closer you will see similarities. Perhaps a bit earthy, tending to being all things natural, and our personalities will shine through. We love to investigate and to take the time to get to know our patients. You might visit us in a health food store or an established clinic, and we are usually surrounded by bottles of liquids or jars of herbs, like an Olde World apothecary. We are all unique in how we practice herbal medicine, as every individual perceives the world differently. We are trained and qualified in the practice of herbalism, even at the university level. We are required to be a member of an Industry National Body that looks after our interests, monitors and regulates our education, training and qualifications so that we are offered membership by the Therapeutic Goods Association (TGA). This membership allows us to acquire professional indemnity insurance and private health fund rebates for our patients. As you can see, we are all legitimate in our profession.

What is the practice of Herbal Medicine?

Herbal medicine has been used and continues to be used across cultures, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Ayurveda (India), Indigenous Australians, the Americas. What you see here in Australia is based on Western Herbal Medicine, with the principles of practice and the plants used evolved primarily from European traditions, such as Roman, Greek, and English.

Traditionally, a plant was used to heal an ill - stomach pains, an infection, delirium, and disorders of the mind with such traditional descriptions of melancholy or insanity. The plant was given as a tea, poultice, or tincture. Modern Day herbalism has evolved from these principles to incorporate science. A plant and its chemicals are studied, the active constituent identified and the most effective mode of prescription for therapeutic effect determined. The raw material, whether it be the leaf, the flowers or berries, bark, root or even resin, is then made into a liquid tincture which is alcohol based to ensure that you receive the active ingredients to heal your ills. Technology of modern day herbalism allows us to have not only access to herbal medicines that are shown to have therapeutic active constituents bioavailable, but that also demonstrate proven beneficial physiological effects by clinical trial.

There are hundreds of herbal medicines, almost as many as there are plants, and a modern day herbalist in clinic will be using products that they know and trust. These are powerful medicines not to be self-prescribed and a modern day herbalist will use trusted suppliers so that the source of the raw material and the presence of active constituents is guaranteed and that there are no adulterations. Therefore we know what is in the bottle so that we achieve the results that we desire for our patients.

The relationship between a herbalist and their patient is unique. In a consult with a patient we allow the time to get to know the person that you are, your tendencies, your energies, your peculiarities, all that makes you YOU. We believe, as did Hippocrates, that your body has the innate ability to heal itself if given the right environment and if nurtured and nourished. This is where our modern world gets in the way. Driving factors that can shift your health off balance include - stress, gut dysbiosis, nutrient deficient diets, exposure to environmental toxins, and pathogens (viruses and bacteria). Any combination of these triggers can affect any part of your physiology - digestion, immune, mental health, endocrine (hormonal) systems. It is then our job to develop your unique tonic to give your body a subtle nudge towards healing and balance, and with your self-empowering efforts with diet and lifestyle, great health is achieved.

Its exciting to be a modern day herbalist. I love the tradition that it beholds, and the benefit to the patient. As a patient you are treated holistically addressing the causes and the symptoms, and treated as the individual that you are with your very own unique traditionally and scientifically validated herbal medicine. I wouldn't have it any other way!

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