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Why is bio-impedance screening important!?

Tuesday, October 16th, 2018

The key to longevity is not so much living long, as it is living well.

The chronic degenerative diseases of ageing are now known to be partly due to genetic inheritance, but mostly due to lifestyle

 

Exciting new evidence has demonstrated that the body’s decline is not due to the passing of years but rather to the combined effects of inactivity, poor nutrition and illness.

Generally most of us would consider health simply the absence of discomfort and a functioning we are familiar with. Actually true health is a state where the functioning of the body is the best it can be. Similar to feeling fantastic. (Homoeostasis is a balanced state of the  functioning of the body which is naturally maintained by the body’s internal processes. At any point in time the body is working to maintain that balance. For instance the body needs to be at a certain temperature and there is a cold breeze; as a response our hairs stand up we get goose bumps and our blood vessels contract to conserve body heat.)

What we are saying here is that the balanced working of the body requires that the building-up and repair processes of the body need to be equal or exceed the processes which cause harm. For instance when we eat the action of food passing through the digestive system wears the lining of the digestive system (catabolic influence). So therefore the body needs to be able to repair that constantly. In another example if we experience prolonged periods of stress (a catabolic influence) and we do not have proper rest and adequate nutrients to support the body it will eventually start to run down.

Many factors influence a person’s state of health. Some have positive influences and other negative ones. We want you to consider which of these factors can be adjusted to favourably influence your wellbeing. Your state of health is in direct proportion to the body’s ability to match repair to ware.

Each of us has our own unique needs. This can be seen in all areas of our lives and it is the same with our diet. But generally we can say that people living in the western countries do not eat sufficient protein in their diets. This is promoted by the whole range of cereal products available for easy eating. From corn flakes to pasta we find our diet is deficient in the essential building blocks for building and repair of our bodies, protein.

Why is exercise important; well, if you don’t use it you loose it, the saying goes, and it is the same with our muscles, bones and aerobic capacity. (See Biomarkers)

Research conducted by Evens and Rosenburg from the Human Nutrition Research Centre at Tuffs University lead to the identification of ten key biomarkers which can be used to chart the progression or regression of sarcopenia, (the disease of ageing).

Biomarkers are the key physiological factors which are associated with the prolongation of youth and vitality

These studies demonstrated that by adopting a particular pattern of activity and eating, it was possible for virtually anyone to slow down the ageing process and maintain functional capacity and vitality for the longest period of time.

Clients are monitored at their visit and at each subsequent visit. This allows us to see firstly where they are in relation to cellular health and secondly it show how effective their treatment program is.

Biomarkers of ageing

Biomarker #1            Body Cell Mass (especially muscle mass)

 Typically, lean body cell mass declines with age. From young adulthood to middle age, the average person losses 3 kg of lean body mass per decade. This rate of loss accelerates after age 45.

Lean muscle is a very important functional tissue. The following functions of muscle demonstrate why it is vital for optimum function.

  1. Glucose Disposal

Our ability to control our blood glucose level is dependent on muscle mass, because 80% of circulating glucose is typically stored m muscle as glycogen. With low muscle mass blood glucose clearance is delayed, resulting in dysglycaemia and an exaggerated insulin response. (see Biomarker 7.)

  1. Organ Reserve

Muscle is a major body reservoir of body glutamine. This glutamine store is called upon to repair and fuel many other tissues. The immune system is dependent on adequate glutamine reserves for optimal function. The integrity of the gastrointestinal mucosa (the lining of the digestive system) relies heavily on glutamine availability. Low muscle mass, therefore, leads to a reduction in organ reserve and limited function under stressful circumstances.

  1. Metabolic Rate

Muscle is the key determinant of metabolic rate. A higher metabolic rate will typically result m more kilojoules consumed per day and greater control over body fat mass. To achieve long term weight control muscle mass must be adequate. A progressive reduction in basal metabolic rate is a recognised characteristic of the ageing process and diminishing muscle mass may be largely responsible.

  1. Mobility

The ability to exercise, to maintain basic physical activity and to avoid frequent falls is an important consideration in the ageing process. Adequate muscle mass and function are required for normal daily activities and to maintain balance and required strength.

The two primary factors which influence this that we can readily engage and improve are:

i)Our level of physical activity

  1. ii) Our nutrition.

EXERCISE

What we do not use, we lose. Muscles used properly and stimulated regularly strengthen and do not atrophy. This is true for people of all ages.

NUTRITION

To maintain and maximise muscle function and health we must also have a supportive nutrition plan. One which favours anabolic hormone, balance.

Biomarker #2            Strength/Musculoskeletal Fitness

Building muscle tissue and regaining and/or maintaining strength obviously go hand in hand. The muscles which attach to and move your skeleton are referred to as your skeletal muscles. Your skeletal muscles receive direction from the motor nerves, which run from your central nervous system via the spinal cord and its branches, which exit from your spinal column. Sets of motor nerves and the muscle fibres that they supply are known as “motor units”.

As we age we typically lose motor units, approximately twenty percent over the 40 years between age 30 and 70.

There are two primary kinds of muscle fibres: the red slow twitch and the white fast twitch fibres.

  • The red slow twitch fibres are focused on low force, endurance

related activities (e.g. posture and walking).

  • The white fast twitch fibres are for shorter, high intensity

activities (e.g. lifting heavy objects and sprinting).

Studies show that we lose fast twitch fibres more rapidly with age and that we typically lose approximately thirty percent of our muscle cells between age 20 and 70.

This gradual muscle loss appears to be the catalyst for a number of other age related changes in our bodies.

These include:

  • A decreased blood sugar tolerance
  • A declining metabolism
  • An increase in body fat
  • A reduced aerobic capacity
  • A loss of bone mineral density

The remarkably good news is that human studies have proven that with the right exercise program, those in their 60th, 70th, 80th and even 90th decade of life can expect improvements in strength and muscle cell size similar to those of young people doing the same amount of exercise!

Skeletal muscles can be considered the engine of your body and your skeleton the chassis. The more efficient your engine, the farther you will go. Which leads us to our next biomarker.

Biomarker #3 `           Phase Angle/Expected Phase Angle

The phase angle is a measure of the amount of muscle mass and the function of cellular membranes and is a mathematical relationship between the resistance and reactance readings.

Phase angle is related to the integrity of the Phospholipid membrane. The membrane of each cell is made of two rows of fat molecules. Research has shown that the consumption of Omega 3 fatty acids such as those found in Salmon, Tuna and Sardines is beneficial. All cellular functions are dependent on the membrane of the cell.

The phase angle is one of the best indicators of cellular health and function available. It is computed from the resistance and reactance values, and is an indicator of the amount of electrical charge the cell membrane can hold. This is dependent on the total cell membrane mass (including the mass of the active tissue mass) and the efficiency of protein and electrolyte channel functions. The larger the phase angle, the better the cellular membrane integrity and, therefore, cell function.

 

The change the cell can hold is also dependent on the intracellular volume, so the phase angle is also an indicator of tissue cell volume. When patients are dehydrated, the extracellular volume (extracellular water) becomes depressed and a falsely elevated phase angle may be read.

The greater the phase angle, the better cellular health the patient has. This is one of the most important readings to gauge the integrity of your cellular membranes. Females (and small framed individuals) have reduced phase angle readings (generally lower by half to one point), which is due to the lower amount of active tissue (muscle).

This number will generally decline as you age. However, it can be reversed. Strength training, quality protein and essential fatty acids are considered important for improving the phase angle.

Expected Phase Angle

The phase angle will increase with an increase in muscle mass and cell function. By allowing for the muscle mass, the % expected phase angle gives the practitioner information on the cellular function and general energy levels. The % expected phase angle is often low in individuals with chronic fatigue. A normal range is from 75?85%. If low, there is a need to detoxify and support mitochondrial function.

Biomarker #4            Body Fat Percentage

Unlike the first 3 biomarkers which typically decline with age, our body fat usually increases with age, even if our weight does not.

Here again, human studies have demonstrated unfavourable changes in body composition with advancing age. The sedentary man or women at 65 has approximately twice the body fat they had as young people!

MUSCLE

Proportion of lean-body mass versus fat in young and older women

These two magnetic resonance images make a dramatic point about the loss of lean-body mass and the accumulation of fat as we age. Both show a cross-sectional view of a women’s thigh. The left photo is of a 20 year-old athlete and the right of a 64 year-old sedentary women. The younger women has a body mass index (BMI) of 22.6, and the older women a BMI of 30.7.

A body fat mass above ideal has numerous ageing effects that strongly disrupt metabolic control and contribute to most of the common conditions seen in modem clinical practice.

These include:

  1. Insulin Resistance

A high body fat mass invariably results in high circulating serum free fatty acids. These fatty acids have a well?recognised effect to inhibit insulin signalling resulting in insulin resistance. The resulting elevations in insulin and (later) blood glucose, are potent age promoting factors causing increased blood pressure, tri-gylcerides and inflammatory response. (see Biomarker 7.)

Insulin resistance leading to hyperinsulinaemia also reduces fat release from adipose stores, thereby further promoting obesity. The insulin resistant state also disrupts hormonal/neurotransmitter control causing gonadal dysfunction and neurological difficulties.

  1. Inflammation

Obese individuals are now recognised to be producing elevated levels of inflammatory cytokines resulting in high levels of inflammatory markers including C?reactive protein. This proinflammatory state of obesity is due to elevated production of inflammatory chemicals like TNF?a and interleukin?6. These create immune dysfunction and heighten any inflammatory response.

  1. Hormone Imbalance

Fat tissue is a producer of weak oestrogen (oestrone).  Oestrone can block more potent oestrogens like oestradiol, thereby inhibiting normal cyclical oestrogen surges resulting in oestrogen/progesterone ratio imbalance with subsequent menstrual disturbance and infertility.

  1. Cardiovascular Disease

The insulin resistant state promotes arteriosclerosis and cardiovascular disease, whilst obesity may do this directly by increasing inflammation and directly increasing circulating lipids.

It is important to note that where your body fat is stored may be as important to your health and how much of it you have.

Biomarker #5             Fluid Index

The fluid index is simply the % extracellular water, divided by the % intracellular water. This result will give you a quick reference number for the ratios between the intra/extracellular water. What causes the fluid index to rise is oedematous conditions, and a high body fat %. The lower the number, the better the patient’s composition health. Women, due to their naturally high levels of body fat, would be expected to have a higher fluid index.

To improve fluid index, the extra and intracellular water levels must thus be considered independently.

Intracellular Water

Intracellular water (ICW) is the potassium?rich fluid volume found within the cell. Intracellular water is a sensitive indicator of cellular function. An increase in ICW is associated with anabolic metabolism (cellular health) whilst a loss of ICW is associated with catabolism.

Maintenance of intracellular water is dependent on cellular membrane integrity, mitochondrial energy levels and the regulation of electrolytes.

Possible causes of reduced intracellular water are:

  1. Electrolytes are ineffective at maintaining an osmotic gradient that holds water within the cell. Magnesium is the key mineral responsible for regulating electrolyte pumping into and out of the cell. Low magnesium levels result in sodium accumulation within cells and the failure of potassium to be pumped through the cell membrane into the cell.
  2. For effective cellular function, the cell membrane requires its constituents to be able to move about efficiently. Adequate levels of essential fatty acids ensure membrane fluidity and the efficient passage of nutrients and factors passing into and out of the cell.

Stress, inflammation and oxidant stress are associated with cellular catabolism, decreased mitochondrial energy production and loss of intracellular electrolytes necessary to regulate ICW.

Extracellular Water

Extracellular water (ECW) is the sodium?rich fluid volume found outside the cells. These fluids include plasma, interstitial and transcellular (normal and pathologic) fluids. The plasma represents the major proportion and the most labile of the extracellular fluids. Any oedematous condition (such as PMT) increases ECW.

Fluids can be held outside the cell in the extracellular space by various toxins. Toxic chemicals, metabolic wastes, infections and other foreign antigens (foods etc.) can initiate inflammatory and catabolic reactions associated with increasing ECW. High extracellular water may be due to a reduced ability to maintain normal intracellular water volume. Typically, high extracellular water will be seen with low intracellular water.

The toxic cause of high extracellular water can be addressed with Bowel and Gut/Liver Detoxification.

A depleted ECW (dehydrated) is often due to dietary indiscretion, inadequate water intake or malabsorption.

There is increasing evidence that people who accumulate fat around their waist (apple?shapes), have a significantly higher risk for developing heart disease, stroke and diabetes, than people who store fat around their hips (pear?shapes). Monitoring waist?to?hip ratios can be a valuable indicator of health and aging status.

Biomarker #6               Aerobic Capacity

This refers to your body’s ability to take in and properly utilise oxygen. It requires healthy lungs, a strong heart and an efficient circulatory system (vascular network). Aerobic capacity typically declines with age: men peak at approximately 20 years of age and women at around 30 years of age. By age 65 oxygen utilisation has typically declined by thirty to forty percent. The key word here is “typically”.

As with each of the previously discussed biomarkers, proper exercise and nutrition can markedly improve your aerobic capacity, commonly referred to as your V02max. (the maximum volume of oxygen you can utilise over a given period of time). The older you are however, the longer it takes, exercising regularly, to achieve the V02max. of young people.

The healthy changes in oxygen utilization or V02max. that we see in those who exercise properly, are primarily due to adaptations in the skeletal muscles, far more so than changes in heart function.

Biomarker #7             Blood?Sugar Tolerance

For most, ageing is synonymous with increasing blood?sugar (glucose) levels. This compromised ability to regulate and utilise glucose is quite insidious, with the first sign of trouble for many being a diagnosis of diabetes.

The inability to efficiently regulate and utilise glucose is due to reduced insulin signalling effectiveness ? insulin resistance. Insulin resistance leads to higher insulin secretion in an attempt to maintain control. Eventually, control cannot be maintained and glucose levels begin to rise. This is noncompensated insulin resistance and is characterised by high insulin and glucose levels. Both of these can be damaging chemicals.

Hyperinsulinaemia

High levels of insulin promote Syndrome X and its associated pathologies: hypertension, dyslipidaemia and obesity.

Each of these conditions is becoming an epidemic and is associated with significant mortality and morbidity.

Hyperglycaemia

Glucose becomes a toxic chemical at high doses and causes the considerable damage in diabetic complications. Glucose can glycate biomolecules, rendering them ineffective and potentially pathogenic.

High glucose levels are associated with microangiopathy, cataracts, retinopathy and peripheral neuralgia.

Poor glucose control is a strong promoter of the ageing process and is clearly environmentally mediated.

Diagnosis

The most useful test available to diagnose glucose intolerance or hyperinsulinaemia is the two?hour glucose tolerance test, which measures glucose and insulin levels after a glucose challenge. No other test is capable of measuring abnormalities in insulin secretion, the major determinant of blood sugar abnormalities.

Biomarker #8               Cholesterol/HDL Ratio

Cholesterol is a fatty substance that is a necessary component of your body chemistry. It plays an essential role on the health of your cell membranes and in sex hormone metabolism. Under certain conditions, it can accumulate in artery walls and form fatty plaques, restricting blood flow and leading to arteriosclerosis, a form of heart and circulatory disease.

Cholesterol metabolism is one of the most misunderstood areas in healthcare today. Cholesterol is not an essential nutrient, as your body manufactures it in your liver whenever necessary. It circulates in your blood stream as “lipoproteins”. These are combinations of fat bound to proteins. Some of these cholesterol?containing lipoproteins have been found to actually protect us from heart disease, these are called high density lipoproteins or HDL’s. The other lipoproteins, low density or LDL’s, and very low density VLDL’s are the types associated with the arteriosclerosis mentioned earlier.

Studies have shown that when the ratio of total cholesterol over HDL cholesterol is 4.5 or lower, there is a reduced risk to heart and circulatory disease. Unfortunately it is typical for cholesterol 1 HDL ratios to increase or worsen with age, increasing your risk to disability and premature death.

Here again, the key to reducing LDL’s (the most harmful form of cholesterol) and raising HDL’s (the beneficial form), is better dietary management, proper supplementation and a proper exercise program. More specifically, diet changes can lower LDL’s, but it takes both exercise and a reduction in body fat to raise HDL’s.

The paradox here, is that for some people to reduce body fat, they must actually increase their intake of the “healthy” fats and oils, while decreasing their intake of the “cholesterol?free” carbohydrates.

Is it any wonder that so many people today find themselves feeling confused and bewildered about what and how to best meet their nutrition needs.

Ibis area of fats and health, further exemplifies the need for individual assessment and targeted recommendations with respect to ones nutritional needs.

Biomarker #9               Blood Pressure

Although there are cultures around the world who show no increases in blood pressure with age, the United States and Canada are not among them. Hypertension, often referred to as “the silent killer”, affects 65 million North Americans, increasing their risk to heart attacks, stroke and other serious diseases with seldom any warning symptoms.

Your blood pressure has two components:

  1. i) Your systolic pressure (read first) which reflects the

pressure on your arteries when your heart contracts.

  1. Your diastolic pressure (read second) which represents

the pressure in your arteries between heart beats when

your heart is at rest.

Normal blood pressure is less than 140 systolic (with 120 considered ideal) and less than 85 diastolic. Even though some people are genetically predisposed to hypertension, the proper nutrition and exercise program will restore normal healthy pressures in most cases.

You can also have blood pressures which are too low. The symptoms of which are very similar to those of low blood sugar levels. These include: episodes of weakness and light?headedness especially on sudden changes of posture.

In more acute cases, such as hypotension, can be related to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances. For example, following heavy exercise in very warm weather or after protracted vomiting or diarrhoea.

With more chronic cases the hypotension, especially if it is posture­ related can be a sign of adrenal insufficiency as the result of prolonged distress. If this. is suspected further tests on adrenal function should be conducted. Conducting blood pressure tests in several different postures, can be a valuable screening tool here.

Biomarker #10                      Bone Mineral Density

There is typically an age?related decline in bone mineral density that leaves older people with weakened bones and at risk to disability and life threatening complications. The later stages of this bone mineral loss is called “osteoporosis”. Contrary to popular belief, it affects men and women. Although it is accelerated in menopausal women it is not a problem which is exclusive to them.

Studies show a typical decline in bone mineral density if one percent per year after peak bone density is reached at between ages 28 to 35 years in men and women. After menopause, typical bone loss increases to three percent per year and for some it can be as high as fifteen percent.

What may shock you is that your rate of bone loss increases 50?fold during prolonged bed rest. Research shows, that two weeks of bed rest can cause as much calcium loss as one full year of ageing! Needless to say, the very best prescription for the prevention and treatment of bone loss is proper exercise and proper nutrition. The nutrition component must include adequate levels of calcium and associated bone building nutrients.

As with each of our biomarkers, there is a simple test that can be conducted to assess whether you are losing significant bone density or not. It involves analysis of your urine to assess the levels of several by?products of bone breakdown, which when elevated signals an accelerated loss of bone. Corrective measures can then be initiated and a re?test done several weeks later to ensure resolution of the condition.

BIA offers a unique window in to the body. It is simple non-invasive and there are no contra-indication to its use. Linked with computing programs it is able to give us a snap shot of the body at that time.

 

 

Typical lifeline Ideal lifeline

Old age in our society is linked with declining mobility and increasing morbidity. Typically in our 40th or 50th decade we begin to experience a decline in our health as can be seen in the illustration of typical lifeline. Unfortunately without any corrective measures this progresses to poor health and then progressive disability. Fortunately with the knowledge available today this need not be the picture of our life. The ideal lifeline shows that with correct intervention our wellbeing can be extended well beyond the norm giving us a fruitful old age.

FSM Frequency Specific Microcurrent: for pain, joints, stress, gut, brain!!

Tuesday, October 16th, 2018

We have used our Cellular Regeneration Therapy for just about everything…  It truly works!!!

New Leaf Natural Therapies:  94 Edith Street, Wynnum 4178

ph: 3348 6098  /  0417 643 849

 


  • Any Pain & Inflammatory conditions
  • Fibromyalgia / toxin release
  • Spinal cord/ spinal pain
  • Scar softening
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Toxin removal
  • Natural facelifts
  • Vaccine toxin removal
  • Fibrosis & adhesions
  • Anesthetic, drug & opiate removal (NSAID’s)
  • Shingles & nerve pain
  • Concussion /head injuries; learning problems/ memory issues
  • Skin care – acne; psoriasis; eczema
  • Bulging discs
  • Endometriosis; fibroids; polyps; uterine pain
  • Gut inflammation, IBS, diverticulitis
  • Neuropathy/nerve pain
  • Sinusitis, bronchitis etc
  • Thyroid / adrenal support
  • Stress, anxiety, depression
  • Gut, liver, bowel support
  • Detox after cancer treatments!

And much, much more!!!


These treatments are fabulous: pain free and simple!  All living tissue has a certain frequency – we can find which body organs and tissues are not functioning correctly and help them to heal – much faster than on their own or even with supplements!!!  If a cell is inflamed, congested, has scarring or adhesions, it simply can’t function properly.  This treatment simply and effectively removes these conditions from the cells and allows them to function normally, again!

The number of treatments depends on how ‘out of whack’ the particular tissue is, for example, it might take 3-22 treatments to dissolve calcifications in the body, excruciatingly painful conditions such as fibromyalgia may require up to 2 treatments per week initially, autism/aspergers/ADHD may require a similar protocol weekly or bi-weekly for a month or two to support all of the aggravating factors. There are many variables that come into play, so therefore it’s very difficult to estimate how many treatments it will take.  But, it works!!!

TGA Approved, it promotes healing of conditions which have not responded to other treatment. The speed of recovery is increased, the effect is long lasting, and there is a more complete healing of tissues than with other therapies. 1 session for pain is equivalent to around 5 hrs massage, which does not have the benefit of returning cells into balance.

During the 1900’s Dr Albert Abrams was the first to develop a calibrated instrument which was capable of detecting the radiations of living tissues. He became convinced that if he could match the frequencies involved, the tissue would be isolated and healed and would return to balance.

Every tissue within the body has its individual frequency or output and the practitioner is able to set the frequency of the device to match. This can be extremely helpful when there are a variety of conditions like trauma, inflammation, stress, or environmental influences. Several treatments may be required to enable complete recovery.

Because the output current from the device is low, it doesn’t stimulate sensory nerves, and therefore the client may only feel some warmth or slight coolness during the treatment. Frequencies are continually changed as it has been shown using a combination of frequencies directed toward the tissues will ease the pain and insure a faster, long lasting recovery.

Every person is an individual and the longevity and the severity of the condition will affect the number of treatments required. Approximately 60-80% of changes which occur within one treatment will last until the next treatment providing it is within an appropriate time frame of up to seven days and you’re HYDRATED!  By undergoing continual treatment the client is training his muscles to respond the way they are meant to, however until this becomes permanent the muscles will attempt to return to their old pathways which will lead to the return of the original condition.
The treatment may be used to alleviate both viral conditions and pain, and for skin toning.

There may be some side effects due to the release of toxins from the treatment; a patient may feel nauseated, fatigued, and slightly drowsy, have a slight increase in pain, or have flu like symptoms after the initial treatment. These symptoms are completely normal. The patient should drink water before and after the treatment as this helps the release of toxins and reduces the severity of effects. The client may also be advised to take supplements to aid the liver detoxification pathways to deal more quickly with the by-products which will prevent overload. These symptoms only last for a few hours after treatment, however if symptoms do continue, then the client should continue to drink water.

Follow Instructions!


It is very important clients follow the instructions as explained by the Cellular Regeneration practitioner due to the changes that will take place in the body as a result of the treatment. Cellular Regeneration therapy increases the cellular oxidation or ATP by 500% over 48 hours, thus increasing the uptake of oxygen and nutrients as well as cell regeneration and repair of tissue inflammation.

Where pain therapy has been undertaken using C.R., many clients experience a dramatic pain-free period after the first treatment, and opt out of follow-up therapy. However, it is wise to undergo the full series of treatments as advised by your practitioner to allow a full healing response.

In certain situations, the symptoms may return within a short period. This type of aggravation is common if the client does not rest sufficiently, or if the treatment stirs up tissue stagnation during the healing process.  It may be that the tissue is far removed from normal and may take some time to return to health.  Compliance with supplementation such as magnesium and EPA/DHA as recommended by the practitioner is important and increased dosages may be recommended during an aggravation.

Call us to book on 3348 6098 or email healthteam@newleafnaturaltherapies.com.au

 

Ross Walter Nutritionist & Naturopath can improve your health!

Thursday, October 4th, 2018
My treatments are:

PERSONALISED

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Consultations and treatments are personalised to you and your circumstances, because everyone is different! The causes of your health condition will be different to someone else with the same condition, so a tailored plan is needed.

HOLISTIC

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A holistic treatment means analysing what is happening in your whole body, and providing a treatment plan which treats the whole body, on all aspects of your health.

EMPOWERING

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Much of the treatment plan is about educating you on the right foods to eat, lifestyle advice, supplements and other treatments for your situation, to enable you to take control of your health.

EVIDENCE-BASED

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Our advice and treatment plans are based on recent and proven scientific evidence from science and medical journals, research studies, textbooks, courses and ongoing Professional Education, as required by our professional associations.

NATURAL & SAFE

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Advice and treatments recommended will be natural and safe for you, including the best foods for your health (and which to avoid), lifestyle changes to improve health, education, and therapeutic strength practitioner-branded quality supplements if needed. Any recommendations will take into account your medications, allergies, lifestyle and other preferences.

COVERED BY MANY HEALTH FUNDS & HICAPS

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Many health insurance funds understand the importance of having a healthy diet and lifestyle and these can reduce the risks of disease and even prevent disease. As such, these funds offer rebates on Naturopathy consultations. Contact us to see if your health fund covers you for this! We now have HiCAPS in the clinic, so you can get your health fund rebate back immediately!

 INCLUSIONS & VALUE

An initial consultation will include the following:

  • 90 minutes of questions and advice – to get a full health and medical history, and to identify the causes of your health issues
  • Analysis of your weekly food intake, and a detailed report of what you are doing well, and what you can do to improve this
  • Naturopathic analysis of your pathology results, in a detailed report
  • Physical tests – blood pressure, blood glucose, oxygen saturation, physical signs and more
  • Lifestyle improvement advice, including how to improve sleep, reduce effects of stress, and environmental health
  • Detailed treatment plan, outlining the prioritised treatment details, personalised for you

That’s a lot of value for your investment in your long-term health!

BENEFITS

Ross Walter Nutritionist & Naturopath can improve your health by helping you to:

  • lose weight
  • have more energy
  • sleep better
  • improve immune system
  • reduce pain
  • reduce the effects of stress
  • improve your diet and lifestyle

and generally feel better and look healthier!

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SPECIALTIES

Ross Walter Nutritionist & Naturopath is experienced in treating the following:

  • weight issues (see here for more information), and weight-related conditions
  • analysing your weekly diet, to see if you are meeting your nutrition requirements for your health and fitness goals
  • chronic or inflammatory disease conditions type 2 diabetes, arthritis, pain
  • skin conditions (acneeczema and psoriasis)
  • heart related conditions (blood pressure and cholesterol), heart disease
  • digestive conditions (Irritable Bowel Syndrome, IBS, constipation or diarrhoea)
  • immune system conditions (colds/flu, autoimmune conditions, and chronic infections)
  • mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety, Pyrrole Disorder, and similar
  • sleep issues (getting to sleep, interrupted sleep, or maintaining sleep)
  • allergies and intolerances or sensitivities to foods, chemicals or environmental substances
  • hormone conditions (thyroid, male and female hormones, PMS, PMDD, menopause)?
  • ?Men’s health (erectile or prostate conditions, low testosterone)
  • ?Women’s health (menstrual cycle issues, fertility, preconception and pregnancy care)
  • natural cancer support and adjunct treatments (see here for more information)
  • difficult and complex chronic (long-term) conditions for which you may not have an answer yet.

Easy Ways to Beat Colds and Flus, Fast Feeling Flu-y?

Thursday, August 16th, 2018

Easy Ways to Beat Colds and Flus, Fast Feeling Flu-y?

Feeling run down with a sore throat, runny nose, pounding head, cough, or fever? Don’t suffer in silence waiting for your cold to run its course. Instead, try these easy, natural ways to help you kick that lurgy and feel better, fast.

Your (Natural) Medicine Cabinet Did you know that natural medicines do double duty when fighting an infection? Not only do they help you feel better quicker by reducing your symptoms, they can also boost your immunity and reduce your chances of getting sick in the future.

Ask your Natural Healthcare Practitioner whether these four cold-busting remedies are suitable for your particular symptoms:

Andrographis – a potent herb that can help reduce the symptoms of colds and flu by stimulating your body’s own immune function; improving your runny nose, cough, fever, headache and fatigue.

Medicinal mushrooms – coriolus, reishi and shiitake can help reduce congestion and mucus, helping you breathe easier.

Probiotics – did you know that there are specific probiotic strains able to help you fight off a cold? The probiotics Lactobacillus rhamnosus (LGG®), Lactobacillus plantarum HEAL 9 and Lactobacillus paracasei 8700:2 have been shown in multiple scientific studies to help reduce the symptoms and duration of the common cold.

Zinc – reduces both the duration of infections and the severity of symptoms, helping you get back to your normal activities sooner. Having adequate zinc levels also decreases the likelihood of you getting sick in the future; meaning fewer sick days needed annually.

Do-It-Yourself Recovery Alongside taking your natural medicines you can help yourself get well by using these seven DIY symptom-relieving strategies:

1. Ease nasal congestion – use a nasal spray containing antimicrobial essential oils (ask your Practitioner for a recommendation). Also, try a steam inhalation or take a steamy hot bath or shower, so you can breathe easier and be more comfortable.

2. Gargle with warm water regularly – this can help ease a sore throat. Add a teaspoon of salt for added antiseptic and gentle anti-inflammatory benefits.

3. Drink plenty of fluids – dehydration can occur if you do not replenish fluids lost through sweating, having a runny nose, or having a fever. Being dehydrated can make you feel sicker than you need to. Choose water rather than sugary drinks which can increase inflammation.

4. Eat regular meals – to keep your energy levels up. Try nourishing, cooked and vegetable-rich foods like soups and stews (they also help keep you hydrated). If you don’t feel like eating, a simple chicken broth can help provide the electrolytes and minerals (such as magnesium, calcium and phosphorus) your body needs to function well.

5. Use ‘food as medicine’ principles – chicken soup can also help reduce mucus congestion, especially if you add warming and pungent herbs and spices such as cayenne, ginger and turmeric. Add plenty of garlic too as it’s considered ‘natures antibiotic‘, helping reduce the chance of developing a secondary bacterial infection that can follow a viral cold or flu.

6. ‘Eat a rainbow’ – include lots of colourful fruits and veggies where you can, to give your immune system the antioxidants and vitamins (such as vitamin C) it needs to support healthy immune function and keep you fighting the infection.

7. Take time off – don’t feel guilty about staying home from work. Convalescing will give your body and immune system the chance to recoup its energy – getting you back to work quicker and fighting fit again. Your colleagues will also thank you for keeping your germs at home! We’ve saved the best tip for last.

See Your Practitioner… For a personalised immune-boosting treatment plan. As everybody is different, your Practitioner can tailor an effective strategy for your situation. Maybe you also have a history of catching every cold and flu there is – so ask them how you can also address the factors that may be weakening your immunity, such as a nutrient deficiency, stress or lack of sleep. Rather than wait for your cold or flu to run its course, be more immune savvy this time around. Support yourself with these natural tips and tricks, and get back to enjoying all the activities you love. LGG® is a registered trademark of Chr. Hansen A/S. Talk to your Practitioner about easy ways to naturally beat colds and flus today.

Auto-Immune Disease – let’s get well!!

Thursday, August 16th, 2018
5 Things You Can Do to Help Reverse Your Autoimmune Disease That Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You
  1. Heal Your Gut. Your gut is your gateway to health. …
    • look at your blood for signs of fungus, candida, parasites, bacteria and viral infections
    • have kinesiology sessions to support better immunity – and find old infections!
    • break down the biofilms in your body with specific herbs and nutrients
    • boost your gut immunity and heal your gut!
  2. Optimize Your Diet. …
    • what is best for you?  we can work towards finding if your body needs a paleo diet, ketogenic diet, weightloss process such as HCG, auto-immune paleo, specific carbohydrate diet
    • remove the toxins – eat fresh, healthy, organic foods
    • think of being toxin free, pesticides free, GMO free
  3. Reduce Your Toxic Burden. …
    • look at all of your products – for washing, cleaning, hair and body products – start researching which ingredients are toxic for your immune system
  4. Heal Your Infections. …
    • start the process.  help infections out of your body, boost your immunity.
  5. Relieve Your Stress.
    • huge!!!  see us for kinesiology, massage, universal consciousness and supplements specific for stress!

Benefits of Hot Stone Massage: Winter Special with Shelby!!! 3348 6098

Monday, June 18th, 2018
What happens during a hot stone massage?

A hot stone massage is a type of massage therapy. It’s used to help you relax and ease tense muscles and damaged soft tissues throughout your body.

During a hot stone massage, smooth, flat, heated stones are placed on specific parts of your body. The stones are usually made of basalt, a type of volcanic rock that retains heat.  Hot massage stones are heated to between 45 to 60 degrees.

The stones may be placed:

  • along your spine
  • on your stomach
  • on your chest
  • on your face
  • on your palms
  • on your feet and toes

Massage therapists may hold heated stones as they massage your body using Swedish massage techniques such as:

  • long strokes
  • circular movements
  • vibration
  • tapping
  • kneading

Sometimes, cold stones are also used during a hot stone massage. Cold stones may be used after hot stones to calm any engorged blood vessels and to soothe the skin.

 6 benefits of hot stone massage

All massages generally fall under the alternative medicine umbrella. They’re becoming a popular complementary therapy for many conditions. Here are some advantages of getting a hot stone massage:

1. Helps relieve muscle tension and pain

Heat has long been used to ease muscle tension and pain. It helps increase blood flow to the affected area. It may also reduce muscle spasms and increase flexibility and range of motion. Cold therapy helps relieve inflammation. Depending on your symptoms, alternating hot and cold stones during your massage may be helpful.

2. Reduces stress and anxiety

It’s the position of the American Massage Therapy Association that “massage therapy can be effective for stress relief.” Research supports their opinion. A 2001 study showed that a ten-minute massage improved cardiovascular responses such as stroke volume. A 1997 study found that 15-minute, onsite chair massages in the workplace significantly reduced stress compared to a 15-minute break without massage.

A 2015 study found that people who underwent abdominal colorectal surgery had less pain, tension, and anxiety after receiving post-operative massage.

3. Promotes sleep

A 2006 literature review found massage may be an alternative to sleeping pills in adults with insomnia. The research showed that back massage helped promote relaxation and sleep. A 2001 study showed that infants with sleep problems who were given a 15-minute massage by their parents went to sleep faster. They were also more alert, active, and positive upon awakening. Massage is thought to help you enjoy more restorative sleep, although it’s not completely understood why.

4. May help relieve symptoms of autoimmune diseases

Hot stone massage may relieve painful conditions such as fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes widespread, chronic pain. According to a 2002 study, people with fibromyalgia who received a 30-minute massage slept longer, had fewer trigger points, and had decreased levels of substance P (a substance involved in transmitting pain signals) than people with the condition who received relaxation therapy. More research is needed, however, before massage becomes a standard fibromyalgia treatment.

A 2013 study found that people with rheumatoid arthritis may benefit from a moderate-pressure massage, such as hot stone massage. Participants in the study experienced less pain, greater grip strength, and a greater range of motion after one month of massage therapy.

5. May help decrease cancer symptoms

A large, three-year study published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management examined how massage affected pain, fatigue, stress and anxiety, nausea, and depression in 1,290 people with cancer. The study showed massage, especially Swedish massage, improved cancer symptoms, even in those with substantial symptoms. Researchers believe the comforting use of human touch played a role.

6. May boost immunity

Massage may give your immune system a boost. According to a 2010 study, a single session of Swedish massage therapy had a positive and acute impact on immunity. Blood samples taken before and after the massage showed a decrease in arginine-vasopressin, a hormone that helps regulate blood pressure and water retention.

 Risks and warnings

When performed by a trained therapist, a hot stone massage is generally safe. There are some circumstances where it should be avoided. Consult your naturopath/doctor before getting a massage if you have:

  • a bleeding disorder or take blood thinners
  • burns on your skin
  • open wounds
  • a history of blood clots
  • had surgery in the last 6 weeks
  • a fracture or severe osteoporosis
  • low platelet count (thrombocytopenia)
  • diabetes

A prenatal massage may help relieve stress and ease uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms. Still, most massage therapists won’t use hot stones on pregnant women. If you’re pregnant, you should only get a massage with your doctor’s approval, and under the hands of a trained prenatal massage therapist.

Winter Special:  only $99 for your initial 1.5 hour Stone Stone Massage with Shelby 🙂

Air Quality & Our Health: Madonna Guy Naturopath

Wednesday, May 30th, 2018

How the Air Quality of Where You Live Affects Your Health

If your home is close to the freeway, you could be putting your health in jeopardy.

This article from the U.S. is well written and gives great ideas about supporting your health!  Madonna’s thoughts:

  1. there are herbs which support the lungs, sinuses and airways
  2. there are anti-inflammatory nutrients and herbs that can be used to support better breathing under stress
  3. Vitamin D is important for every cell in your lungs!
  4. Old infections can create low level inflammation that adds to your risk of sinusitis, hayfever, allergies and asthma
  5. Overuse of steroids suppress the mucus in your lungs to the lower lobes – over years of use we end up with less capacity in the lungs – chi nei tsang can help loosen the congestion in the lower lobes of the lungs
  6. Overuse of Anti-biotics has been shown to destroy the villi in the intestines and lead to lung conditions – there are nutrients and probiotics specific for re-growing the intestinal villi
  7. Biofilms can build up in the lungs and intestines – and hold old infections – which are released in a mutated form when we are run-down
  8. Our Food Detective shows 60 food intolerances that are causing inflammation in your body – this can be done within a 60 minute consultation with our naturopaths
  9. Glutamine, vitamin A, vitamin D are all crucial for healing the gut and lungs
  10. Kinesiology, Acupuncture and Chi Nei Tsang abdominal massage all support better immunity, better lung function, less allergies and less inflammation

Call us on 3348 6098 to book an appt 

 

The Los Angeles freeway system was designed to get you where you need to go fast (well, more likely in tons of traffic). But it also has had unintended consequences for the health of people who live near the busy roads — especially children, who can suffer lifelong consequences as a result.

The health risks of air pollution.

First, some good news: The USC Children’s Health Study, one of the largest research projects into the long-term effects of air pollution on children’s respiratory health, has found that, overall, kids’ lungs have improved in the past 20 years in the LA area. Bronchitis symptoms have also declined. This is all due to improvements in air quality, as policies to fight pollution were put in place and emission levels from vehicles declined.

But, it’s still clear based on the study’s findings that children who live in areas with more pollution have poorer lung function, reduced lung growth, more asthma and greater lung damage than kids who live in areas with less pollution. The air quality is definitely the cause, as lung function improves when kids move away from these areas. Plus, days with higher levels of air pollution lead to more respiratory infections that result in more school absences.

More negative health outcomes discovered.

Kids aren’t the only ones at risk. USC Environmental Health Centers notes that high levels of air pollution near freeways can cause high blood pressure and gestational diabetes in pregnant women. It could also lead to more cognitive problems in their babies. In teens, another USC study showed pollution particles can affect still-developing brains and increase delinquent behavior. In adults, another USC study found that preventable heart disease deaths are a direct result of living near a major road. Living near air pollution can lead to more cardiovascular disease, including heart attacks and stroke, and premature death as a result.

Urban living or the suburbs?

So how close is too close? The state Air Resources Board recommends against building homes within 500 feet of freeways, although the LA Times reports that this is happening anyway. The City Planning Commission has even warned against building 1000 feet from a freeway and notes negative health consequences as far as a mile away. (Check out how your home fares with the LA Times’ interactive map.)

In some ways, urban density can have environmental benefits — living close to public transportation hubs reduces the number of cars on the road. Better air filtration systems, vegetation barriers and other anti-pollution measures may help new buildings that are close to busy freeways. But experts still agree that living farther out has current benefits for your health, even though you have to drive a greater distance to get to where you want to go. In general, the farther you are from the freeway, the less pollution poses a risk to your health.

But besides moving, what else can you do to protect your respiratory health if you live in an urban environment with pollution? Monitor the air quality by visiting the Environmental Protection Agency website airnow.gov. You can also sign up for email alerts or download their app. Or, check out the World Health Organization’s air quality website, breathelife2030.org.

Follow these tips to keep safe when air quality is low:

  • Stay indoors as much as possible in a building with air filtration. At home, close the windows and use an air conditioner with a HEPA filter, or use an air cleaner/purifier, especially in your sleeping space.
  • Keep your home clean of particles by using a vacuum with a HEPA filter, and a wet mop on floors. In general, carpet is going to hold onto more dirt and dust, so bare floors are better.
  • Don’t use a fireplace, smoke or light candles.
  • On your commute, see if you can go in off-rush hour. Try taking back roads or, if you walk, go through a park.
  • Take off your shoes as soon as you get inside, and change your clothes.
  • If you exercise outdoors, skip mid-afternoon on warm days.

Colds Flu Bugs! Let’s get well!! 2018 Winter Specials (use by 31st August 2018)

Thursday, May 24th, 2018

Are you trying to prevent the flu this year?  Trying to avoid the Flu Vaccine?

Let’s think about what it means to get sick…

…  it means your immune system is lowered.  Herbs and nutrients help to boost white blood cells – your immune system – so you can fight infections faster.

…  being sick ripens your immune system.  Each time you get unwell, and NATURALLY boost your immune system, and NATURALLY  get well afterwards, you then have this immunity for the rest of your lives.  Vaccines give no long-term protection – which is why it’s recommended each year.

…  looking at your blood (Book in at New Leaf – winter special is only $199 for 1.5 hours with Georgia or $219 with Madonna) will give you an idea about how worn out, exhausted, challenged your liver, gut, immune system is…

…  Big enough doses of vitamin C (anywhere from 3-20 grams daily) has been shown to kill viruses… increase daily until you hit bowel tolerance – vitamin C.

…  We have herbal nasal sprays that have essential oils and xylitol which will help to locally kill infections and break down old biofilm / mucus that’s holding old infections in the sinuses.  These infections are reactivated once we’re exhausted and run down – and our immune system is compromised.  We also have herbal throat sprays which do a similar thing in the throat – locally kill infections.  Obviously, we still need to boost the immune system as well, local infections (sinuses, lungs, throat, gut) are just a sign that the overall immune system isn’t working well!

…  Probiotics – there are very specific strains of gut probiotics that boost immunity.  The regular strains are not the ones proven to boost immunity – see us for specific strains that raise the gut immune system

…  Herbs all have different ways of working for us:  there are herbs that are mucolytic, herbs that tone the lungs and sinuses, herbs that boost immunity, herbs that settle the cough, herbs that kill viral infections, herbs that destroy bad bacteria….  once again, think probiotics as well!

…  Stress will reduce the immune system – we find that sometime unless that stress is lessened (or resolved) the immune system will never improve.  All of our processes (OligoScan, Blood, Acupuncture, Kinesiology, Naturopathy, Massage) can all find reasons for stress and help to support lowering it.

…  Acupuncture helps to boost immunity, tone the lungs, boost energy to and from our bloodstream and lymphatic systems…  Book a series of immune boosting Acupuncture sessions for only $89 each!  Mention this special!!!

…  Kinesiology helps to find blockages stopping your immune system from functioning properly…  1/2 hour Immune Boosting Kinesiology for only $99 with Georgia or $119 with Madonna

…  Naturopathy / Kinesiology combo with Georgia only $149 for 1.5 hours!

…  Hot Stone Massage heats the body, which of course, is nature’s way (fever) for killing infections.  We have infrared saunas too!!    Book up to 3 x 1.5 hour Hot Stone Massages for only $99 with Shelby!

…  Frequency Specific Microcurrent can target the immune system, lymphatic system and boost these cells to detox faster!

 

Call us on 3348 6098 to book

Simply Life-changing health advise for you and your child.

Monday, May 21st, 2018

Join me for FREE at The healthy mommy Movement summit.

Are you wondering and asking the question “What is wrong with me?” and always feeling sick and tired or health issues in the family are constantly dragging you down, you are wanting more answers to start feeling amazing and live a much happier healthier life you and your child deserve…..

You need to know the number 1 most underling issue to nearly every disease in the human body.

Where you have the ability to take control of your health, you want to find safer and more effective ways to help you and your child.

Then I want to invite you to an online event that’s perfect for you.

It’s called The Healthy Mommy Movement Summit: Healthy Home Healthy Food Healthy Gut Happy Child.

I’m participating in it, and I’m so excited to invite you to join for FREE!  https://thehealthymommymovement.com/madonna

It’s all about how you can make better informed decisions when it comes to you and your family’s health.

Just click here to claim your FREE spot in The Healthy Mommy Movement. https://thehealthymommymovement.com/madonna

Here’s a little more about this unique event:

 

My friend, Jade Venables is interviewing me and 21 other acclaimed functional medicine doctors, nutrition practitioners, health and wellness coaches, fitness trainers, meditation and mind full thinking, ADHD, Autism, neurologists, scientists, food experts and so many more.

 

Are you wondering what could possibly be going on inside your body..

 

What are the underlying causes of all health issues so you can work out their solutions and start feeling and living the life you and your child deserve, what to eat, how to release stress, anxiety and have optimal health and energy?

 

Where you can have full control over your health, once you know what to do and have the tools to start building your health, how you can apply the solutions to your life right away?

 

The answers she’s getting are transforming lives. They may set you on your ideal health journey and help you reclaim your strength and energy as a whole family.

 

Through these interviews, you’ll find out how to:

 

  • Reverse auto immune disease
  • Natural treatment for Autism and ADHD
  • Increase your energy mind body and soul
  • Find optimal health and wellness
  • Why we need our hormones and what they do for us.
  • Dangerous household items highly effecting you and your childs health
  • The underlying cause to almost every disease
  • Helping your IBS or SIBO, anxiety, and chronic conditions
  • How to find inner peace, relax meditate and love
  • How to get the best from yourself in your parenting and all areas of life
  • What does your poo say about you! Healing your digestive tract
  • Unlocking the unlimited power within you, so you can release the struggle, heal easily and live a life you love

 

And much, much more…

 

You’ll come away with an increased clarity about your nagging symptoms and what steps to take next so you too can learn how to have better optimal health.

 

So, click here to claim your spot in The Healthy Mommy Movement!  https://thehealthymommymovement.com/madonna

 

Much Love,

 

Madonna Guy

thehealthymommymovement.com

 

 

P.S. Each interview in this series will only be available for a limited time. So register now and get ready to unlock your key to living the life you your child deserve!

 

Click here to register https://thehealthymommymovement.com/madonna

Nutrition and psychiatry!

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018

Great article from the UK about nutrients and psychiatric conditions!  Obviously we treat all of these conditions at New Leaf – our combination of:

kinesiology
naturopathy
universal consciousness
acupuncture
chi nei tsang
microcurrent therapy
nutritional supplementation

gives great support and relief and hope… for our clientele.

Call us on 3348 6098 for support 🙂

 

A lack of essential nutrients is known to contribute to the onset of poor mental health in people suffering from anxiety and depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and ADHD. Nutritional psychiatry is a growing discipline that focuses on the use of food and supplements to provide these essential nutrients as part of an integrated or alternative treatment for mental health disorders.

But nutritional approaches for these debilitating conditions are not widely accepted by mainstream medicine. Treatment options tend to be limited to official National Institute for Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines which recommend talking therapies and antidepressants.

Use of antidepressants

Antidepressant use has more than doubled in recent years. In England 64.7m prescriptions were issued for antidepressants in 2016 at a cost of £266.6m. This is an increase of 3.7m on the number of items prescribed in 2015 and more than double than the 31m issued in 2006.

A recent Oxford University study found that antidepressants were more effective in treating depression than placebo. The study was led by Dr Andrea Cipriani who claimed that depression is under treated. Cipriani maintains that antidepressants are effective and a further 1m prescriptions should be issued to people in the UK.

This approach suggests that poor mental health caused by social conditions is viewed as easily treated by simply dispensing drugs. But antidepressants are shunned by people whom they could help because of the social stigma associated with mental ill-health which leads to discrimination and exclusion.

Prescriptions for 64.7m items of antidepressants were dispensed in England in 2016, the highest level recorded by the NHS. Shutterstock

More worrying is the increase in the use of antidepressants by children and young people. In Scotland, 5,572 children under 18 were prescribed antidepressants for anxiety and depression in 2016. This figure has more than doubled since 2009/2010.

But according to British psychopharmacologist Professor David Healy, 29 clinical trials of antidepressant use in young people found no benefits at all. These trials revealed that instead of relieving symptoms of anxiety and depression, antidepressants caused children and young people to feel suicidal.

Healy also challenges their safety and effectiveness in adults. He believes that antidepressants are over-prescribed and that there is little evidence that they are safe for long-term use. Antidepressants are said to create dependency, have unpleasant side effects and cannot be relied upon to always relieve symptoms.

Nutrition and poor mental health

In developed countries such as the UK we eat a greater variety of foodstuffs than ever before – but it doesn’t follow that we are well nourished. In fact, many people do not eat enough nutrients that are essential for good brain health, opting for a diet of heavily processed food containing artificial additives and sugar.

The link between poor mental health and nutritional deficiencies has long been recognised by nutritionists working in the complementary health sector. However, psychiatrists are only now becoming increasingly aware of the benefits of using nutritional approaches to mental health, calling for their peers to support and research this new field of treatment.

It is now known that many mental health conditions are caused by inflammation in the brain which ultimately causes our brain cells to die. This inflammatory response starts in our gut and is associated with a lack of nutrients from our food such as magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, vitamins and minerals that are all essential for the optimum functioning of our bodies.

Recent research has shown that food supplements such as zinc, magnesium, omega 3, and vitamins B and D3 can help improve people’s mood, relieve anxiety and depression and improve the mental capacity of people with Alzheimer’s.

Magnesium is one of most important minerals for optimal health, yet many people are lacking in it. One study found that a daily magnesium citrate supplement led to a significant improvement in depression and anxiety, regardless of age, gender or severity of depression. Improvement did not continue when the supplement was stopped.

Omega-3 fatty acids are another nutrient that is critical for the development and function of the central nervous system – and a lack has been associated with low mood, cognitive decline and poor comprehension.

Research has shown that supplements like zinc, magnesium and vitamins B and D can improve the mental capacity of people with Alzheimer’s. Shutterstock

The role of probiotics – the beneficial live bacteria in your digestive system – in improving mental health has also been explored by psychiatrists and nutritionists, who found that taking them daily was associated with a significant reduction in depression and anxiety. Vitamin B complex and zinc are other supplements found to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Hope for the future?

These over-the-counter” supplements are widely available in supermarkets, chemists and online health food stores, although the cost and quality may vary. For people who have not responded to prescription drugs or who cannot tolerate the side effects, nutritional intervention can offer hope for the future.

There is currently much debate over the effectiveness of antidepressants. The use of food supplements offer an alternative approach that has the potential to make a significant difference to the mental health of all age groups.

The emerging scientific evidence suggests that there should be a bigger role for nutritional psychiatry in mental health within conventional health services. If the burden of mental ill health is to be reduced, GPs and psychiatrists need to be aware of the connection between food, inflammation and mental illness.

Medical education has traditionally excluded nutritional knowledge and its association with disease. This has led to a situation where very few doctors in the UK have a proper understanding of the importance of nutrition. Nutritional interventions are thought to have little evidence to support their use to prevent or maintain well-being and so are left to dietitians, rather than doctors, to advise on.

But as the evidence mounts up, it is time for medical education to take nutrition seriously so that GPs and psychiatrists of the future know as much about its role in good health as they do about anatomy and physiology. The state of our mental health could depend on it.