Archive for the ‘Monthly challenge’ Category

Healing Hormones

Friday, June 20th, 2014

A lot of clients having been coming in lately with menstrual and hormonal imbalances. Clinically, things often tend to come in waves, but the more women I treat the more I realise how timeless and important it is that we care for our hormonal health.  A woman experiences on average, 300 to 400 menstrual cycles in her lifetime, so from that perceptive, it makes sense to make menstrual and hormonal wellness a priority if we are seeking a balanced, healthy life, whatever your health goal may be.

Ovulation and menstruation are processes in the body that connect in with our emotional life, our stress, and how we feed our bodies. It’s important that we listen to signs and symptoms, as they can be extremely useful pointers to things that are out of balance, either physically or emotionally.

The traditional medical answer to menstrual issues and contraception is synthetic hormones. Tolerability to these does vary considerably between women, depending on genetics, and often on detoxification ability.  It’s astonishing the number of women who are taking some form of synthetic hormone medication, very often from a young age, to manage (suppress) symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Sometimes coming off hormone medications (including the oral contraceptive, IUDs, or implants) can be a hard road. And it can be long.

Fortunately, there is an enormous amount of natural support available for correcting hormonal imbalances and relieving related symptoms. Herbal medicine is abundant in herbs that support women’s health. Naturopathically we also use specific nutrients for supporting hormones, and Kinesiology to reduce stress, create inner balance and get to the heart of emotional issues fuelling hormone imbalances. We also offer Chi Nei Tsang, a healing abdominal massage to relieve congestion and blockages, with which we have excellent results with menstrual pain.

The keys to treating hormone issues successfully, naturally, are;

–          Get the right prescription from an experienced practitioner. Hormone issues are complex. There are a myriad of herbs and supplements with different actions, so it is essential the right ones are chosen for your unique health picture. At New Leaf we combine decades of study with muscle testing, matching our experience and knowledge with what your body is saying.

–          Stay on track. Take your supplements and herbs, and do your best to stick to a healthy plan. It’s all worth it. It all makes a difference.

–          Trust and Patience. As Hormone issues are often long-standing, it is important to be patient with your body, and trust it is continually striving towards balance. Your body’s natural urge is towards healing. When we identify any blockages to healing, we can remove them, and your body does the rest. It can take time, but it does happen.

–          Develop inner attention. Often when symptoms come up, we immediately want to move away from them, resist them, shut them down.  If we pause for a moment, listen to our symptoms, we can create the space to ask ourselves, ‘what is it my body really needs, right now?’ The answer often comes to us. So often, it is in some way, a call for rest or self-nurture. There is no condition in the body that is not improved by increased rest and stress reduction.

Other things you can do at home:

Actually, what you do day to day can make a huge difference to your menstrual wellbeing;

–          Go on a water diet – meaning, in addition to the food you eat, drink only pure water, and plenty of it. Avoid all other drinks except for herbal teas and green tea. Within a week you can notice changes in your skin tone and hydration, energy, digestion, and concentration. Always drink water at room temperature and away from meals.  

–          Sleep in total darkness. For hormones to balance well, we need to create a natural, healthy balance of light when we are sleeping. Avoid LCD screens or TV late at night, and ensure your bedroom is dark. The exception to this is during full moon, where allowing moonlight into your room if possible is recommended, or alternatively putting on a small nightlight to mimic moonlight.

–          Eat regularly – our hormones are greatly affected by fluctuations in blood sugar. Eating healthily is one thing – we also need to eat regularly to reduce stress on the body caused by big fluctuations in our blood sugar. For many of us, this means breakfast, lunch, a small snack, and dinner. Make dinner a light meal if possible.

–          Quit sugar – Sugar can aggravate hormonal symptoms, particularly skin breakouts, PMS and general irritability. It also has a huge impact on ovarian issues such as PCOS.

–          Take space – Classic author Virginia Woolf wrote that ‘every woman needs a room of her own’. Very wise words indeed. An important part of anyone’s life is having the physical and emotional space to just ‘be’. We all need time out on a regular basis. If there isn’t a spare room to call your own in your house, alternatives could be talking a walk outside, or transforming the bathroom in the evenings with candles, music, essential oils and an Epsom salts bath.    

–          Journal – writing and reflecting can be extremely therapeutic and also quite revealing. Taking time to write down thoughts and feelings can help reveal recurrent patterns over the course of the month. Often we write off intense emotions as simply part of PMS, but often there are deeper and very real issues that then remain unaddressed. Journaling can help identify these so that they can be processed.

–          Practice Yoga – Yoga is enormously beneficial for hormonal health. By increasing circulation and calming the mind, yoga can help to reduce pain, bloating, PMS and improve energy and overall sense of wellbeing.

We are here to help!

Call us for an assessment, consultation and personalised treatment plan.

Maintaining weight over Christmas – Don’t go backwards with your health!

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

It’s so easy for people to create a lot of health problems over the Christmas Silly Season.  Yes, there’ll be parties, fun & frolicking and so there should be!  But we need to take a step back and decide how much damage we’re going to do to our bodies.  We can easily create such a huge amount of inflammation that our bodies take months to recover.  Make a conscious decision to have fun, but NOT to damage your body too much after Christmas…

1.  Drink heaps and heaps of filtered water.  It will keep you hydrated, support your liver and kidney function, help you eat and drink less!

2.  Mix your drinks with soda water:  spirits, wines, champagnes…that way you can feel like you’re drinking with your mates, but doing yourself, your liver and kidneys less damage in the long run…

3.  Use carrots, snow peas & celery sticks to eat your dips.  You’ll be getting plenty of anti-oxidants and fibre, moving everything through your intestines faster.  If you’re on the keto-diet you can even use small slices of ham, turkey slices or veggie slices to pick up the dip with…completely keto if you choose good dips.

4.  Try to exercise daily.  20-30 minutes every single day throughout the silly season to keep your metabolism up.  Everyone can fit this in regardless of how busy, how tired, how full they are!

Mostly have fun.  It’s proven that we maintain weight more easily when we’re happy and not stressed.  Stress hormones force us to release fat-storing hormones…  Happiness helps us digest better and release fat-burning hormones.

Have a great Christmas
Madonna Guy ND
Chief Clinician

Monthly Challenge: Treat Tweet Challenge

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

The owners of New Leaf: Jason & Madonna Guy have been doing a ‘Treat Tweet Challenge’ through the month of November so see how hard it was to not have any ‘treats’ that weren’t fat-loss friendly.

It has been a huge challenge – and it’s nearly over.  We’ll let you know the total fat-loss results and weight-loss results on 30th November, but for now, it is a challenge when we are constantly eating out, toast, chips, rice, potato are served with just about every meal…  We’ve been to lots of pre-paid events where the deserts and meals are paid for, but we resisted!

We’ll keep you posted…  can you go a whole month without any treats??  November our aim is to exercise 30 minutes EVERY DAY regardless.

Madonna Guy ND
New Leaf Natural Therapies