Guest post by Dr Natalie Kringoudis
Yesterday I threw around some ideas about pap smears, the alternatives, and how we can look at ways to treat cervical dysplasia. Today I’m back with the second part of this post, to share in more details specific supplements and treatments that can provide a far better long-term solution in comparison to some of the more aggressive treatments practiced.
How do I know? Because I’ve been in this situation. I’ve had a couple of dodgy test results come up myself – and whilst they were just at the inflammation stage on the scale, they still weren’t normal. That said, my life at times goes from crazy to busy and then back to crazy with a little bit of stress thrown in the mix. And at these same times, I’ve known that my test results probably wouldn’t be flashing green lights. But hey! Remember that ovulation tutorial I shared a little while back? It tells women so much about their reproductive health because as she gets used to watching her fertile patterns – any change in this is obvious AND always a sign that things aren’t right. Who needs pap smears when we have our own odometer. We just need to learn to tap into it. Of course pap smears are a great tool to check especially for those women who are disconnected from their lady parts.
So first things first. If you have ever had an abnormal result, it’s important to be regularly having pap tests to keep track of what is going on.
Secondly – know that if you’ve been treated for cervical dysplasia, you still must implement measures to ensure it doesn’t come back. It’s one thing to remove abnormal cells, but the virus isn’t taken care of. That’s still in you unless you get your body fighting fit to rid of it.
Here’s how to practice prevention:
There are several supplements you need to add to your routine.
- Folic acid (which the pill strips your body of) is most often lacking in women with cervical dysplasia. Therefore those on the pill really need to be wary. Studies have show a considerable improvement in women with cervical dysplasia who were taking 10mg per day of folic acid. Pop it on your shopping list today. And never skimp on quality where it counts. This is one of those areas. Dose: up to 800mcg for all. For those trying to reverse a bad pap result, double this dose (1600mcg).
- Vitamin A has also been shown to improve the results in those presenting with abnormal pap tests. 16,000IU is suggested for all. Add an extra 8000 IU for those in treatment mode.
- A quality multivitamin is also key – to sort out all the stuff in between and reinforce your body with the requirements it needs.
There is a good list of antiviral herbs available both from Chinese herbal medicine and western herbal medicine. Remember, ridding yourself of the virus is key to stop the abnormal cell growth returning.
You can use herbs like Dandelion, Ecinacea, Elderberry, Garlic, Olive Leaf Extract to for their anti-viral properties.
Use foods that pack a punch on antioxidants to help the body rid of damage and promote healthy cells. Astragalus is a commonly known immune builder, as is milk thistle and the good old mushroom!
And then to cleanse, never go past barley grass or lemongrass, wheatgrass or spirulina. All necessary for the body to detoxify.
Using a cleanse like I’ve been running on the blog is a great kick start into the healing process. Your diet is key to moving forward on this, especially if you are in the healing process rather than the preventing stage.
What you eat will influence your immune system so keep it real and keep it clean! Loads of fresh vegetables and fruit everyday, preferably organic where possible.
It isn’t recommended that you eat as a vegetarian whilst treating cervical dysplasia. Your body needs amino acids to build antibodies – and I’ve spoken many times about adding up protein and fats for better hormone and reproductive function. Vegetarians can find it difficult to see results. Work out what is right for your body. It doesn’t mean hoeing down entire cows at a time, but learning how to add this to your diet is key.
Sugar is also out the door.
Remember – pap tests will need to be done regularly if you choose to treat such conditions. It is always best done under the care of a health professional. It is very treatable, and when we see abnormal cell growth, it is a sign that our body isn’t doing so great in keeping on top of things. Virus’ such as these may affect your fertility. Aggressive laser or surgical treatments can affect your fertility, as well as your ability to birth vaginally. There are always options, it is simply a matter of working out what works best for you.
For more thorough overviews, hunt down a copy of Jane Semples’ book HPV and Cervical Dysplasia. Lots of great info which is spot on in treating and preventing cervical dysplasia.
So what do you think ladies? What will you being doing to help support your body?
Guest post by Dr Natalie Kringoudis
Abnormal pap smear’s are really common, heck I’ve had one. Weird, I know! I am so healthy, I don’t drink, I sleep 8 hours every night, I eat all organic, I meditate, exercise and I dont drink coffee or alcohol. So, what the heck? When I got the news I called my amazing doctor Nat Kringoudis and she suggest it’s caused from old stress. Not stress for last week or the week before but maybe stress from 6-12 months ago. You see stress lives and maifest in the body which is why it’s SO important that we dont stress. But this was the case for me and you may be different and Nat’s going to talk more about that below.
Ill keep you posted with my progress.
But now I want to hand you over to Nat who’s an expert on this topic.
Ever had an abnormal pap smear or know somebody who has? Like everything health related, we have options with health treatments. Many western medical treatments are aggressive, which can be wonderful if you’re at the end of your road. Everything has a place, it is simply a matter of working out what works for you. For me, I’m all about the alternatives, not because I like to be different, but because they work, without nasty side effects or consequences. These very consequences can at times, land somebody in deeper water than they first started. Which is why I want to share alternatives and just how effective these can be.
So back to the pap smear. Nobody loves a pap smear. Equally nobody loves to get a bad result in any area of health. Abnormal cell or tissue growth in the cervix is called cervical dysplasia. Dysplasia may or may not progress to cancer. A high percentage of cervical dysplaysias and cancers are linked to the human papiloma virus (HPV), meaning it is sexually transmitted. This alongside long term use of oral contraceptives, smoking, alcohol abuse, poor nutrition or an immune system which is poor functioning as well as some drugs and HIV infection are all risk factors for developing cervical dysplasia and cervical cancer.
Good news is, before you run off for any type of procedure, there are ways to treat cervical dysphasia.
When you have a pap test, a sample via a swab, is taken of the cells in your cervix. The swab contains epithelial cells and they are studied to see if they look normal or how close to normal they appear. A pap test grades these cells on a range from 1 to 5. One or two on the scale are usually benign, however they should be followed up. When we get to 3 on the scale, is where your GP will follow it up for a closer look and 4 or 5 is cancerous and usually requires treatment.
If a pap test comes back with some small changes, it’s perfectly acceptable to treat this with some healthy living, supplementation and a kind lifestyle and then tested regularly to ensure this is working for you. You gotta know this much. Pre-cancerous cells are not cancer. Most cells that present this way, will happily go back to being normal again. The majority of such inflammation is related to something other than HPV like the pill (we’ve learnt just how little a fan I am of the pill, as if I needed another reason) or alcohol, smoking or poor diet. Good news is the success rate using the right supplementation is extremely high.
Here are a few interesting stats:
- Older women are less likely to had HPV infections
- Best schedule pap smears away from the period time or if you have an infection (i.e. thrush). This can skew your results dramatically(get your natural health care practitioner to treat you first and then go back and grab that smear). Also best to avoid using tampons 48 hours before the test – they too can cause inflammation that may show up as irregularities.
- Conventional treatments for the treatment of cervical dysplasia use cryotherapy for small areas or using CO2 laser via colposcopy. In severe cases, the cervix may be removed. According to CMDT – NONE of these treatments can guarantee a remission or prevent recurrence. Reality is, you can still spread the virus even if you have been treated.
Here’s where the true, tried and tested methods of operation wellness overhaul fit in. Get your body back into gear and chances are, your body can do a great job of healing itself with the right guidance. I’m doing to dive deeper into the hows and why’s in the second part to this post, but I’ll give you a few things to think about until then.
If your pap smear shows with mild dysplasia – it may be a good idea to hold off on any procedures to see if you can get things back on track. Such procedures can be damaging, and whilst I agree that left untreated, these conditions are life threatening, they are also extremely treatable with natural methods. Set yourself a target of 3-6 months (talk it through with your gynacologist and explain what you are doing), get healthy, supplement right (we will talk about this next post) and go back and re-test. You’re in control of your body, so take the reigns.
I’ll be back next week to talk more about what to do if your pap isn’t normal – to outline specific diet, lifestyle and supplements that may be useful to get you back on track. Of course, no two situations will be the same and you always must weigh up your options but getting healthy is never, ever doing to do you any harm.
As we leap into a winter of wellness I’m so excited to tell you Christian Miranda (elite personal trainer to celeb’s, models and other hotties) is going to be joining us on the blog every week for some #fitgirl action.
This week he kicks it off with some tips for those dreaded cold mornings when we’d rather hit the snooze button.
We’ve all had those early morning battles with the snooze button on the alarm and the voice in our head saying ‘just 5 more minutes’. Getting up out of bed is a lot more difficult when its freezing cold outside! With the colder morning now upon us, keeping warm is important for a number of reasons:
- To be comfortable - We all enjoy what we’re doing a hell of a lot more when we are comfortable. As difficult as it is to get out of bed on a cold morning, your motivation is going to be determined by the goals you’ve set and being comfortable helps make this a lot more achievable!
- To prevent sickness - Myth or not, the changing of body temperature from the warmth of your home, to the cold air, to the heat and sweat of a good workout, and back to the cold air afterwards needs to be managed to ensure we don’t get sick. That said, the deliberate changing of temperatures such as with cold baths, hot showers etc can actually improve circulation by stimulating blood flow throughout the body.
- To prevent injury - The last thing we want is to get injured because our body wasn’t properly warmed up and as we age, our body’s ability to repair itself from injury is limited due to decreased circulation. By keeping our bodies warm, and performing a few basic exercises we can prepare the body for the day or a training session.
Tips for improving your circulation:
Guest post by Christian Miranda
My whole life I have always been one to observe others around me to see what it is that makes people successful, trying to learn as much as I can so that I too could work towards this.
Sitting in the gym in between sessions with my own clients, I see myself doing the same thing, observing members and clients and picking up on the various traits that I feel have made certain individuals successful in their efforts towards achieving their goals. Unless you are giving yourself every possible chance to achieve success, then the efforts you make will be for very little gain. I am quick to tell my clients this as I have found that the ones that embrace what I have outlined below are the ones that achieve and maintain the greatest success! Needless to say, they are the people that you probably notice and wonder how they achieve such amazing results, and why are they always so happy.
Turning up to training 2-3 times a week will not get you the results you want unless you apply yourself properly when you are there. Eating well sometimes will not get you results, because you should be doing it all the time. Here are a few things to take on board to hopefully help you maximise the efforts that you put in.
Often, a lot of us are hesitant, cautious, or nervous towards particular events because we are not prepared, be it mentally or physically. If you do things right all the time, then you stand a much better chance of succeeding when it comes to the occasion you are working towards. Being physically prepared allows us to be mentally prepared by giving us the confidence in ourselves to do the best that we possibly can.
Too often I see people not have a go at things with confidence. It may be a new exercise, or the same exercise just with a heavier weight. Get in there and have a go! We have nothing to lose, for if we don’t succeed the first time, we can always learn from where we’ve gone wrong so as to do better next time – therefore it is a success.
Things are only “too hard” if they are impossible – it may be difficult, challenging or uncomfortable, but never is it “too hard” – therefore we have no option but to attack what it is we are working towards, learning as we go, how to eventually make it easier for ourselves so that we can improve each time.
How many of you have said in reply to your trainers request to do a particular exercise, “I can’t, it’s too hard!!!”, only to do the exercise well over and over again. Have an open mind, and back yourself always for if it doesn’t work out the first time, you will learn why and achieve it the next time.
Learn, Understand, And Appreciate
To me, these three words separate the clients that achieve great results from the ones that achieve good results.
Learn – You must be willing to learn from your trainer new ways to achieve things in your life that you may not have ever thought possible before
Understand – Exercises are so much more effective when you understand why it is that you are doing them. What muscle group are you working? What intensity does it require to get the desired effect? How do I perform this exercise with perfect technique? There is a purpose behind every exercise we give you – understand it, and apply it to maximise the effects these exercises can give you!
Appreciate – Having put my body through various types of training, I have gained an appreciation for the different effects we experience: jelly legs, shaky arms, head spins, seeing white dots, blocked ears, muscular pain for days after (not injury!!!), nauseous to name but a few of the more common feelings. I appreciate what I have done to get my body to this point knowing what results I can achieve from doing so. I appreciate it even more when I see my clients doing the same. Embrace these feelings and appreciate the hard work that you put in knowing that you are working towards achieving your goals!
Work towards goals with PURPOSE
All of us know how to set a goal and work towards it, but how many of us know how to do it purposefully?
Consider the following:
- Will a teenager wanting to bulk up to do so by running 10km every day?
- Is a person who struggles to workout maximally going to achieve this if all they do is train at 60% intensity every day?
- Will a clients back or shoulder injury heal if they continue to do heavy squats with poor technique or ridiculous amounts of bench press?
The answer to all of these statements is NO – yet I continually see people doing things like this and wondering why they aren’t getting improvements in their training, why they aren’t losing weight, and why their injuries aren’t getting any better. Think about what you are doing, seek advice if you don’t know what you are doing, and do things properly, with purpose ALL THE TIME!
Unless you are passionate about what you set out to achieve, the results you get will have not been maximized and they will be very short-lived. Passion allows us to put all of the above mentioned points together. If you are passionate, you are willing to learn. Willing to sacrifice. Willing to have a go, and do what is required to achieve your goals. There is no secret towards achieving success in any area of life – but passion is perhaps the most necessary aspect. Passion can easily be confused with obsession, I like to look at it as a healthy obsession – often when we are obsessed with something we do whatever it takes to get it: Eat well, Train Hard, Recover and be Happy!
High Profile Personal Trainer & founder ONE PTS
Christian Miranda is an exceptional motivator with a passion to bring the best out of individuals through fitness, health and wellness.
With a background in National competitive swimming he has been able to draw upon his own life experiences in sport to manage and communicate with his clients as athletes themselves. Christian has spent the last 5 years developing and systemising his own style of coaching for peak performance in life.
As the founder of ONE Personal Training Solutions, he is working towards improving the quality of trainer that the general population seeks to receive guidance and teaching from so as to stamp ONE Personal Training Solutions authority as being one of the leading training companies in the country.
He has worked with various athletes from Olympic, World Championship and National Medalists in Swimming, Athletics and Water Polo as well as NRL and English Super League Rugby League players.
Christian also works with high profile individuals in the fields of modeling, acting and TV presenting.
The difference that set’s him apart from the rest is his expertise to be able to identify the following formula:
Individual framework – mentoring – true potential – motivation – success
With his commitment to succeed and ability to motivate, Christian has been able to create for himself a lifestyle that enables him to do what he does best – continue to mentor and support those around him to work towards achieving their best!
On Monday I shared how I went from enemies to besties with my food and I’m so grateful to those of you who shared your stories. I want to remind you my gorgeous friend that this has nothing to do with the food AND everything to do with what was going on inside of me. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Everything outside of us is a reflection of our internal battle. Even down to the food we choose to eat (or not eat).
So I want you to think about your food relationship for a moment and ask yourself this:
- Did you reach for junk food a sugar or caffeine fix this past week?
- Are you turning to processed, fast or “ready to eat” food because you’re ‘too busy’?
- Did you skip a meal or ‘forget to eat’?
- Do you tend to “snack” a lot or crave dessert?
- When you ate dinner last night, were you watching TV, sitting on Facebook or surfing the net?
Now ask yourself - what’s really going on here?’
Don’t kid yourself. Get real! Open up and be honest with yourself.
Notice the emotions and mean girl talk that is going on inside you. Is your ‘mean girl’ judging you? Are you feeling guilty or angry with yourself?
I want you to take a deep breath and let all that go. Just accept what is now.
Now, choose to make a deliberate and conscious choice. You might even say this out loud:
“I easily and willingly choose nourishing, fresh, healthy food that is grown and prepared with love. I choose to nurture my body”.
If it helps you could write this on the fridge or set it as a phone reminder when those 3pm cravings creep up. In 12 Steps to Wellness we devote an entire step (in fact it’s number 1) to Eating Well with a heap of tips and suggestions to help you nourish and nurture that gorgeous body of yours.
In the meantime here’s a step-by-step guide to help you start healing your relationship with food:
- Tune in with yourself next time you reach for the sugar hit or caffeine fix and ask this question ‘what’s really going on here?’.
- Notice what comes up for you and sit with it.
- Allow the feeling/s to be there.
- Don’t judge or label it (that’s just your mean girl doing the talking).
- Just allow the feeling to be there and fully feel it.
- If you feel to journal about it do so but don’t what ever you do run away with the story. You must stay very present in order to transcend this unresolved feeling otherwise it will only come back in 2 days, 2 weeks or 10 years.
Choose this practice every time you want to suppress your emotions with food. Keep working on it each day and soon it will become habit, then in time a way of life. I continue to do this every day. There’s no such thing as a quick fix – calorie counting, crash diets and all those other things we do are simply masking what’s going on inside you. Make the choice beautiful – you and your body deserves to be loved, nourished and nurtured.
So what do you think? Are you ready to heal your relationship with food?
I use to entertain quite a destructive relationship with food (and myself). I hated food. Loathed it! And didn’t really want anything to do with it. Sound familiar?
I saw food as the enemy. I would binge on sugar, alcohol and refined carbohydrates giving myself minimal nutrition or nourishment. Until my body carked it. At the time I didn’t realise it was because of the way I was treating myself but looking back it’s a complete reflection of my internal battle.
When I lived in London working as an actress and dancer I use to drink a large caramel latte from Starbucks for breakfast and lunch, then dinner would be grilled tofu (please don’t try this at home). I didn’t care about myself and would take drastic measures to stay thin.
Why was food the enemy?
Because I was desperately unhappy and needed something to blame, it was “easier” to blame something externally instead of taking responsibility and looking within. I was miserable and dealing with depression, panic attacks and anxiety and there’s no way in hell that I wanted to be responsible for that. The truth is I was the one orchestrating all of this. It was my movie and I was playing the lead role.
But it all got too much and my body said no more. As I lay in hospital I turned the mirror around to me and took a long hard look at what was going on. I was stick and tired of depriving of feeling the way I did and restricting my body of vital nutrients it needed and was sick of blaming everything and everyone else externally including my food. It was time to take responsibility, reclaim my power and own my own shit.
I realised as a result of being unhappy I would turn to sugar, refined carbs, processed foods and food definitely not made with love. Then, I turned inward and address my emotions and unhappiness. I started to lean toward high vibrational food made with love and care. My body was craving organic, home cooked and nutritious foods. Now when a client comes to me and shares what they eat this is a direct reflection of their state of being. It tells me a lot about that person.
Now I look at food with such love and appreciation. I use it to nourish and am so grateful I have access to organic fruit and vegetables, grass fed and grass finished animals products and wild caught fish. How beautiful is that. I have all of this on my doorstep.
Since dealing with how I was feeling internally my relationship with food shifted. I have settled into my perfect weight and am able to stay here. No drastic fluctuating, dieting, depriving and limiting myself. I eat what my body asks for and needs in order to function at optimal levels.
So my darling are you turing to food rather than dealing with your internal turmoil? Take a moment to journal it or share in the comments below.
If you’re read to nourish your body you’ll love Step 1 in my new eBook ’12 Steps to Wellness’, download it now and start your path to wellness today my gorgeous friend.
- Melissa xo
Guest Post by Dr Ron Ehrlich
A beautiful smile says much more about your health than how it looks. The beauty in a smile is not just about appearance. There is a different type of beauty in a healthy mouth too. Let’s explore the 3 aspects to a beautiful healthy smile.
This means of both the teeth and the gums.
Teeth discolour as we get older but this can be made far worse because of foods we consume, particularly coffee and red wine. Tobacco is will also dramatically discolour teeth and affect the health and appearance of the gums.
Decay and discoloured fillings also need to be address reflect on the health of individual teeth
Gum health is another part of a beautiful smile. Healthy gums should appear pink and firm. Inflamed gums are red, puffy and bleed easily when you brush and floss your teeth. Inflamed gums and more advanced gum infection, which like decay, may never cause pain, has been linked to a whole range of health issues from cardiovascular disease, diabetes and even cancer.
Regular home care and visits to the dentist or hygienist will ensure health of the teeth and gums.
Whitening, be it at home or in the dental office, is a simple and often effective way of improving colour.
The shape of teeth is an important part of a beautiful smile. Teeth or fillings that are broken are more susceptible to decay, infection and discolouration.
Teeth that are excessively worn, prematurely age the smile. Worn teeth are often reflecting a nighttime grinding habit. Research now links night grinding with breathing problems during sleep. So worn teeth may be a clue that the person is not getting a good night’s sleep and is often linked to tension headaches or neckaches.
To improve shape of teeth bonded composite resins, porcelain veneers or crowns may be the best option. Replace missing teeth with removable denture, bridgework or implants also makes a huge difference to appearance and function.
As humans we evolved to have 32 teeth. If the upper and lower jaws are too narrow to fit the teeth, this may also reflect that the rest of the lower half of the face (nasal and oral cavity) is too narrow as well. The mouth dramatically influences the shape of the nasal cavity and that can affect breathing patterns.
90% of people in our society have some form of crowding, either requiring wisdom teeth (3rd molars) removed or just have teeth that are crooked or crowded to varying degrees.
When aligning teeth it is also an opportunity to think about improving the airway and breathing (nasal breathing is far healthier than mouth breathing), quality of sleep, as well as the function of the jaw joints, which should be balanced and comfortable.
This can be done with removable orthodontic plates, metal or ceramic orthodontic braces, invisalign, or a combination of them all
A beautiful smile is also a healthy one. There is much too be gained by exploring some of the issues.
Health Advocate & Educator, Holistic Health Practitioner & Dentist
Dr. Ron Ehrlich is one of Australia’s leading holistic health practitioners and educators. He is also one of Australia’s leading holistic dentists. Dr. Ron’s founded the Sydney Holistic Dental Centre in 1983, and has developed a patient-centred practice and approach to healthcare. He takes an innovative view of how stress impacts on our health, and includes a unique oral health perspective. He is qualified in nutritional medicine, pain management and of course, dentistry. As a holistic dentist Dr. Ron’s primary focus has been on the person attached to the teeth, rather than just the teeth. His patient-centred approach has proven to be great model for healthcare.
Guest post by Dr Natalie Kringoudis
Diet and lifestyles are major contributors to our growing fertility problem. Of course, diet won’t solve 100% of the problem but it will undoubtedly help your body get more fertile. Before I go on, know this. If you hear the word ‘fertility’ and back up a few steps, keep reading. Fertility doesn’t immediately equate to babies. Fertility is an extension of your health, the potential to conceive. It’s not limited to conception but extends to all reproductive health including health menstrual cycles right through to your bowel movements!
1. Pump up the protein
Your hormones are made up of fats and protein, and it is for this reason that we need to ensure we are getting enough animal and plant protein to support fertility. I’m talking 50% of each meal. Sounds a lot, but do the math – a serve of fish and salad or a quiche with salad. There you go. Not hard at all.
- invest in a pea or rice protein powder to boost your levels and blend yourself a morning smoothie. I’m loving sun warrior brand for it’s quality.
- add chia seeds to salads, smoothies and cakes – they are a complete meal! (highest plant based source of omegas, fiber and protein)
2. Never fear fat
As I mentioned, fats go in the mix to make up our hormones. When we rob our body of these vital ingredients, it goes into a frenzy and shuts down our reproductive functions. Let’s face it, we don’t need our fertility to survive. So ensure what’s on your fork has quality therapeutic fats – think oily fish and eggs (omega 3’s & 6’s), animal and plant fats (coconut butter, salmon, milk). Not only will your loins love you, your skin will show how kind you are being to yourself and your brain will tick like you’re five again.
- Look no further than eggs. They will provide the best balance of fat and protein. Contrary to what you’ve probably been told, you can’t have too many. Ever.
These are the key to optimal health – and since your gut is the pivot of your health, maximizing absorption of vitamins and minerals is where it’s at. Get onto these superfoods:
- Macca – high on my superfood list, it goes great guns on balancing hormones and enhancing libido. Pop a scoop into your smoothie, or sprinkle on your salad.
- Use Mesquite - another superfood available from loving earth - to stabilize insulin, it’s the highest anti-oxidant on the planet. It’s important to balance insulin for reproductive health – especially in those with poly cystic ovarian syndrome and thyroid troubles.
- Come one step further – Gubinge. It’s native to Australia and is the king of superfoods. You can get your hands on it here. Also add this to your smoothie or add to baking to really fire things up. I particularly love this because it’s local – and local produce will benefit those most who live in the same habitat. Same goes for eating with the seasons.
4. Hydrate, and then some
Quality water is a must. Preferably filtered – especially in areas where water is recycled and treated where it’s difficult to filter out hormones and medicines (think the pill and antibiotics). Good news is – a bench top jug does a good job of eliminating these nasties.
- Be mindful of water coolers – they are ok sporadically but many of them use copper piping which sets the hormones way out of whack and can be a sole contributing factor to infertility.
5. Ditch the plastics
Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical used in plastics which is doing terrible things to our fertility. This is because BPA mimics oestrogen, which can do terrible things to the menstrual cycle in women, and also deform sperm, making it impossible for conception. I suggest investing in some quality glass containers with plastic lids. Good news is you can now buy plastic that is BPA free – meaning you can still store your leftovers. My view is, glass is the best alternative. You can reuse your glass food jars and do your bit for the environment at the same time. There’s more info here if you’re keen.
- Never drink water from a plastic water bottle that’s been sitting in the sun – this is a sure way to ingest BPA.
- BPA is also found in certain brands of cling film – to be sure, avoid having your food pressed against it and find an alternative way to store it.
6. Sleep for fertility
Sleep between the hours of 10pm – 6am will absolutely lower and balance hormones. Hormones are easily pushed out of kilter when we don’t rest adequately. Our bodies work on a the circadian rhythm (aka 24hr cycle), the inner time keeper responsible for day & night body function. One of it’s main jobs is hormone production. The receptors in our eyes tell our bodies when it is time to rest and time to wake. Alteration to this cycle disrupts our body function. Regularly disrupting this patter will affect the bodies normal working order – fertility included. Most of the secretion of hormones is controlled by the circadian clock and sleep is one of the only things that will affect this, so we need to sleep at the right time.
- Women who sleep less than 5 hours per night are more likely to be overweight and drink more coffee. Both affect fertility.
- Lack of sleep will also make you more hungry (I suspect as our body craves the right balance – and we look for it in the wrong place)
7. Fresh is best – and always go with what’s in season
There are specific qualities that certain veggies contain that can help to treat menstrual irregularities and hormone imbalances. By increasing your intake and variety of fresh produce, you will do your health and fertility big favors.
- Recent research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this: It takes exactly nine months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit – not just a pretty fruit, but a lovely symbol of fertility and gestation.
- Adding olives to your plate is useful to assist in maintaining a healthy reproductive environment and nourishing the reproductive organs. You’re body is clever – stress will absolutely lower fertility, and so adding foods to help our body work well and cope better with stress is essential in our busy lives.
- Figs are also great for male fertility. Figs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow – just like… you guessed it. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers too. This means this magic, luscious fruit helps to overcome male sterility. Figs are historically known as an aphrodisiac to, and feeling like lovin’ does just as much for fertility levels as all the eating well in the world!
8. Go organic
We know that organic food is free from harmful chemicals and pesticides, which are making us sick, causing us to gain weight and again, mucking up fertility as our guts can’t absorb the nutrients in their presence. Where possible, go organic.
9. Treat yourself – have a drink
You can have wine, and you can have coffee! Just make sure it’s quality and you don’t go overboard (ground beans – say no more to the instant variety ). A quality coffee a day will not make you barren. As for alcohol, stick to low consumption.
- For women - 2 glasses per week – any more can affect ovulation.
- Men can tolerate a little more – 2 drinks every second day as a maximum. For men it can affect sperm quality and quantity. Just be mindful of how much is too much.
10. Say goodbye to soy
Soy is in everything, and it’s doing whacky things to our fertility. Minimise intake of processed soy products – a little is ok but it’s estrogen-mimicking properties don’t do your hormones and ovulation any favours. High levels of oestrogen will stop other hormones – luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone, from being secreted (essentially what the pill is made up of). These hormones are necessary for ovulation to occur and in their absence, the entire menstrual cycle suffers. Same goes for men – high oestrogen will affect hormone secretion and affect over-all health as well as semen quality.
A little bit more about Dr Natalie Kringoudis
Natalie’s belief in the benefits of alternative therapies saw her establish her own Women’s Health and Natural Fertility in Melbourne, The Pagoda Tree, in 2003.
The birth of Natalie’s first child – daughter Olivia – further fuelled her love for natural health and home living and revealed to her an entirely new treatment perspective – integrating the western medical approach with alternative therapies, Chinese medicine and natural fertility methods.
Natalie’s expertise is in women’s health and fertility, specifically supporting women to become mothers. Her knowledge in fertility and natural medicine has been featured in many publications, including Marie Claire, Cosmo Health, Cosmo Pregnancy and Body + Soul, and she has appeared on The Morning Show as their Natural Health expert.
With a passion for educating women on the use of alternative therapies and nutrition, Natalie provides her specialist insight on her website with up to the minute information on health and fertility, as well as recipes for healthy living and wellness.
It is with this passion that Natalie has written Fertilise Yourself, to allow her to share her knowledge with women world-wide.
Last week, I embarked on a three-day at home reboot. I did this because I felt to, to become even more crystal clear and ready for a kick-ass 2013.
Over the three days, I was doing an organic liquid cleanse from Orchard Street. Read all about it here.
As well as the liquid cleanse I did a few other things. Here’s what I did.
- Training session with my trainer, Christian Miranda from One PT
- Swam in the ocean
- Dry body brushing
- Read my book in the sun.
- Coffee enema (Thanks to my girl, The Wellness Warrior!)
- 20-minute meditation (Thanks to my awesome meditation teacher Tom Cronin)
- Bike ride in nature with my love
- Bed by 9:30 p.m.
- Journal session in nature
- Dry body brushing
- Coffee enema
- Bed by 9:30 p.m.
- Dry body brushing
- Coffee enema
- Journal session
- Training session with my trainer, Christian
- Deep tissue massage with Georgy (seriously the best massage of my life 0430 006 852)
- Bed by 9 p.m.
Creating a little three day at home reboot is so much fun plus your in the comfort of your own home.
Remember everyone is different and what works for me may not work for you. The best thing you can do is tune into your divine power and find out what your body wants right now. Our bodies are always talking to us, so open up and listen.
The best bits:
The surprising thing was: I had so much energy throughout the whole three days. That is why I went and did Pilates and trained. But if I was feeling tired there is no way I would of done those.
Because I don’t eat processed foods, sugar or drink alcohol, I didn’t get detox symptoms such as: headaches and brain fog. My friends couldn’t believe how much energy I had. I’ve had people comment on how bright my eyes are and how clear my skin is.
What I realised:
Over the three days, I spent a lot of time alone pondering, writing, and meditating. I noticed how much we engage in unnecessary eating. We eat to supress emotions, out of habit, and boredom. Instead, we should be eating to nourish our beautiful temples.
After the cleanse, every time I put something to my mouth, I asked myself: Is this going to nourish me? If the answer was: No! I put it down.
Try this next time you go to eat or drink.
- Am I eating to supress emotions?
- Am I actually even hungry or am I just eating out of habit?
- Am I eating because I am bored?
- Will this nourish my temple?
- Is this the best quality produce I can get?
- Will this make me feel more energised or will it make me sluggish?
- Is this organic and free from toxic chemicals?
- Is this in alignment with my ethical beliefs?
If the answer is: No! sweetie, then don’t put it into your gorgeous temple. Treat your body with love and respect and it will do the same to you.
Now over to you, gorgeous! Join the conversation! Is there something you want to cut out of your life? Maybe it’s coffee, a toxic relationship or alcohol. Let me know in the comments below.
Christmas is a time of joy and laughter, the whole family gathering together and sharing food and memories. But for some Christmas can also make you feel a little bit anxious. For the health conscience the temptations to over eat are sometimes too strong. I want to share with you my top 6 tips on how to stay on your Path To Wellness (without offending anyone) over the silly season.
1. Offer to make a dish
2. Stop at one
Although tempting, try not to go back for seconds. There is usually an abundance of food on Christmas day and the temptations to go back for seconds or even thirds can be high. Instead, once you have had your meal simply walk away and engage in some sort of other activity, like playing with your baby cousin. The joy of the little bub will make you forget all about the Aunty Jan’s Strawberry Pavlova and the creamy coleslaw.
3. Hold the sauce and dressing
Homemade sauces and dressings are great, way better than the bottle stuff but can still contain loads of sugar, margarine, cream, salt and milk. Which if you don’t consume on a regular basis might upset your tum tum. Ask for these on the side if possible. You don’t want to offend anyone by asking ‘what’s in this?’ ‘Is this gluten free?’ ‘Did you use free-range eggs and coconut oil?’ Best just to not have it.
4. Go easy on the alcohol
If you have decided to drink over this period I would suggest a tipple of red wine or vodka, fresh lime and filtered water. And alternate with a tall glass of water.
5. Keep moving
My Christmas day looks something like this:
- Wake up
- Exchange gifts
- Go to my Mum’s side of the family
- Go to my Dad’s side of the family
There is a lot of sitting, eating, sitting in the car and more eating.
Keep moving throughout the day, I suggest going for a family walk in nature after breakfast. Or if you have younger cousins play with them. Or suggest a friendly game of backyard cricket. Run around and keep moving. This will help aid digestion, stop bloating and stop you from feeling sluggish.
Laughter is good for so many reasons, it boosts the immune system, triggers the release of positive endorphins, protects the heart, lowers stress hormones, eases anxiety and fear, relieves stress, improves mood and enhances resilience, plus many more. It’s all round life’s best medicine and here’s the best part – it’s free. So warm up your cheeks and get giggling.
Last year whilst we were all still sitting around the table I got everyone to write down three things they were grateful for over the past year. Everyone put it in a santa hat and I read it out. It was a beautiful way to connect with the family. Another suggestion is getting everyone to write three things they love about each person, then reading it out. It’s such a beautiful way to connect and express how you feel.
I hope these tips release a bit of stress and anxiety you might feel leading up to the big day. Above all really connect with your family, stay light, catch up and find out how they REALLY are. Everyone wants to be heard! Take the time to connect and engage with each person and let them know how much you care and love them.
Have you got any tips you can share in the comments?