Claudette's Specialties: Female and Male Hormonal Imbalances, PMS, Period Pain, Fibroids, Polycystic Ovaries/Syndrome, Endometriosis, Menopause, Prostate Problems, Low Libido, Natural Fertility Management: Contraception, Overcoming Infertility Problems (females and males), Preconception Care, Sex Selection, IVF support, Pregnancy Care: Pregnancy nutrition and remedies, Miscarriage support, Birth preparation, Doula: Childbirth support, Post-natal care for mother and child.
Warding Off Winter Colds and 'Flus
Winter is definitely here and now is the time to get focused on your health so as to keep that spring in your step and smile on your face. With shorter winter days and the drop in temperature, there is every good reason to laze around and snuggle up with winter comfort foods. As important as it is to listen to our natural rhythms of the body during these cold winter months, it is also essential to nourish the body so it doesn't start lacking in vital nutrients and succumbing to colds and 'flus. When my nose started to run this week, I knew it was time to promptly put all my own advice into action!Prevention is Better Than Cure
Remedies to the Rescue
- Winter is the time for root vegetables, hearty casseroles, soups, porridge, bone broths and stews so pull out your slow cooker to create a feast for the week. Pile in your vegetables of every colour, protein of choice whether it be beef, chicken, fish, beans or lamb and lots of herbs and spices for a nutritious, tantalizing meal.
- Cut back on all sugar whether it be the sugar you add to your tea or coffee, soft drinks or energy drinks, sweets, lollies, ice cream, alcohol and chocolate bars. Sugar suppresses your immune system and all viruses and bacteria feed off sugar. Hydrate your body with a hot cup of soup or herbal tea instead!
- Although the wind chill factor can be high, grab your beanie and get outside in the warm sun for a walk. Vitamin D exposure is essential for proper immune function and to lift your mood.
- Regular moderate exercise keeps your metabolism boosted. However, avoid pushing it to extremes as too much cardio exercise can tax your immune system at this time.
- Echinacea is a herb that boosts the first line defence of your immune system so taking an Echinacea supplement throughout winter gives your immunity an edge. There are different species of Echinacea: E. augustifolia root is the most potent species, E. purpura is the most common, while E. pallida has no therapeutic value. Echinacea tea is virtually useless as the therapeutic compounds you need are not extracted by water alone.
- I also recommend 1 tsp of Vitamin C powder each day or a hot lemon and ginger drink every morning. Vitamin C combined with a little Zinc and Vitamin A is even better.
- Swap your daily coffee for a freshly squeezed orange juice or carrot and ginger juice from your local juice bar or vegetable shop. Bottled juices have lost any therapeutic benefit in the bottling process so eat your fruit instead.
- Keep warm. As simple as this may sound, keeping your kidneys and your chest warm ensures that vital body energy and heat is not lost and catches a chill. Grab a scarf and wind a sarong around your mid-riff for extra warmth.
- Create a positive outlook on life! Expecting the best and converting problems into opportunities is a life skill that can be learned by everyone and has been shown to raise the immune system.
- Gargle with salt and water, chew fresh ginger slices, sip on hot water and fresh lemon juice. Unfortunately the squidgy bottle of lemon juice you buy in the supermarket has lost its potent vitamin C content - add lemons to your shopping list or grow a lemon tree!
- Shake a few drops of Eucalyptus essential oil or Tea Tree oil in your morning shower, a hot bath, or oil burner to clear your nose, head and chest.
- Eat as much onions, garlic and horseradish as others can tolerate from you! These vegetables are naturally antibiotic. To disguise the taste and make an effective cough syrup, slice an onion and pour 1 Tb of raw honey over it. Keep it in the fridge in an airtight container and in 24 hrs you have a sweet antibiotic syrup. One teaspoon of the liquid syrup helps kill any germs!
- If your chest, nose or sinuses are clogged up or you suffer from allergies or asthma, reduce dairy, especially milk, as it will only create more mucous.
- Chicken and vegetable soup. Revered in many cultures for thousands of years, chicken soup works wonders as the convalescent food to fortify the body and immune system. Make a big pot and take it in a thermos or lunch box to work for lunch or simply heat some up when you get home from work each night.
- Sleep is when the body repairs itself and can channel its resources into fighting infection so sometimes we have to go home, turn off the mobile and go to bed. Allowing our bodies to rest and heal is an age old prescription that most people ignore or override by throwing back a few cold and 'flu tablets to keep working but eventually it catches up with everyone. Winter is the time when our body naturally wants to hibernate so if you can feel the onslaught coming, an early mark for much needed sleep is better than a week or two of a full blown 'flu or chesty cough and succumbing to antibiotics.
There are now clinical trials demonstrating the positive effect of herbal medicines on the immune system by increasing Natural Killer cells, phagocytes, lymphocytes and interferons as well as demonstrating anti-viral activity. My own magic mixes usually include Echinacea, Andrographis, Thyme, Astragalus, Reishi & Shiitaki mushrooms. See your qualified naturopath or herbalist as products vary enormously in quality so you don't waste your money or your health.
Lamb Shoulder with Lentil Salad and Steamed Fennel
A hearty winters meal to warm the body and soul.
- 1 lamb shoulder
- 1 large sweet potato
- 1/4 cup coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp of dried thyme
- 1 tsp sea salt or pink Himalayan salt
- 3 whole garlic cloves
Preheat oven to 250C. Cut sweet potato into 3cm slices, leaving the skin on and coating with coconut oil. Slice open flap of lamb shoulder, smear with coconut oil and fry in a hot pan with whole garlic cloves for 30 seconds on 1 side only. Sprinkle with rosemary, thyme and salt and place the sweet potato around the lamb. Bake for 10 minutes at 250C, then reduce heat to 180C and cook for 1-1.5 hours depending on size. Alternatively you can use your crockpot and slow cook the lamb shoulder by adding two cups of water or stock and cooking for 6-8 hours.
Lentil Salad Ingredients:
- 2 cups of brown cooked lentils
- 2 Tb apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tb extra virgin olive oil
- 1 handful of chopped parsley
- 1/2 tsp of mustard
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1/2 handful of chopped coriander
- 1 Tb of thinly sliced spanish onion
Mix all ingredients together and let them sit to absorb the flavours before serving.
- 4 whole fennels
- 2 Tb extra virgin olive oil
- Sea salt or pink Himalayan salt
Slice whole fennels in half and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Steam or barbecue for 10 minutes or until soft throughout middle.
Serve sliced roast lamb, roast sweet potatoes, lentil salad and steamed or barbecued fennel.
Enjoy your winter roast!
How Safe Is Your Mobile Phone?
Radiation exposure is becoming more widespread and difficult to avoid, but do we know the long term effects? Non-ionising radiation, such as from computers and mobile phones, is less toxic but more prevalent and exposures to sources is often over an extended period of time. Apple and Blackberry warn users to keep their mobile phones nearly an inch away from their bodies due to the radiation exposure. Studies have shown that you can absorb 48-68% of the radiation into your body and head from your mobile device.
There is increasing evidence of cell DNA damage and chromosomal abnormalities which adversely affects reproductive eggs, sperm and embryos. Research has also shown radiation to be strongly implicated in hormonal disorders via disruption of the pituitary gland. Women who use mobile phones when pregnant are more likely to give birth to children with behavioural problems (Journal of Epidemiology, July 2008). In May 2011, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified cell phone radiation as possibly carcinogenic to humans. It recommended that “Consumers should consider ways of reducing their exposure.” The governments of the U.K., Finland, India, and France have adopted a precautionary principle regarding exposure to cell phone radiation. Israel is also proposing legislation that would require cell phones to carry a label stating “Warning: the Health Ministry cautions that heavy use and carrying the device next to the body may increase the risk of cancer, especially among children.”
Radiation Reduction Tips:
* Use your mobile as little as possible. If you know you have to make a long phone call, try and use a land line. Otherwise use your mobile is best used on speaker phone.
* Switch your mobile off at night while sleeping, as it still attracts and emits radiation even when you are not making a call, especially if you have a smart phone and are receiving emails.
* Avoid using your mobile in the car or other metal framed structure as the metal becomes a conductor of the radiation, amplifying it. If you must use it in the car for occupational reasons, a car kit can be fitted with an external aerial or bluetooth.
* When switched on, keep it away from your (lower) body, at least 1 metre. Although there are health concerns for all parts of your body, your eggs, sperm and embryo are particularly vulnerable as this is where cell turnover is greatest. Radiation has been strongly implicated in fertility problems, especially sperm of men who constantly carry their mobile phone in their pocket and women with a mobile in their handbag. It is better carried in a top pocket or I carry a Raditech Goyster to neutralize the radiation. This is a small 10 cm disk which is available from www.geomack.com. Alternatively place your mobile phone on the other side of the room when working at a desk.
* I use and recommend the smart phone covers by Pong Research. It is a company that produces Iphone, smart phone and Ipad covers that reduce radiation exposure without reducing signal strength: www.pongresearch.com
* The use of hands-free kit/ear-piece is controversial as some studies seem to show they may actually increase exposure.
* Turn off the computer & monitor when not in use, ie. do not leave running as still producing radiation in that room. The more modern the monitor is, the lower the radiation. Laptops emit less radiation from their screens but emit higher levels of electric fields from the keyboard. Therefore laptops should not be placed on the lap itself as this places the electric fields too close to the reproductive system. Running the computer on battery minimizes EMFs as opposed to electricity.
* Sit and move away from the monitor whenever possible (at least 2 metres). Remember radiation is emitted from the back and sides of your monitor and other workers’ monitors.
* Fix a radiation protection screen to the front of your monitor. It is not the same as an anti-glare screen. These do not prevent 100% of the radiation from escaping and there is usually leakage around the edges. The more expensive screens are more effective.
* Epsom salts absorb radiation and as they do so, the crystals break down. Fill a small cushion cover or half an empty pillowcase and lay it on the desk or on your lap. When the crystals have broken down to a powder, they need to be replaced. Epsom salt baths or swimming in the sea can help to detoxify regular exposure.
* Green leafy plants, especially peace lilies and sunflowers, and cacti absorb radiation: have one on the desk or grow in the immediate vicinity of the computer.
* There are various devices available that protect against radiation. These include a small portable device to be carried in your bag or an appliance placed simply in your house/office/car by Raditech UK. More information: www.dulwichhealth.co.uk (Australian distributor – ph. 07 5441 3818) or www.geomack.com.
* Take breaks: nature, plants, sunshine, ocean all absorb and help clear radiation from you.
* Place some lead between yourself and the monitor, especially between the anti-radiation screen and your lower body, as radiation cannot penetrate through lead. The easiest way to achieve this (and the lightest) is to buy some of the lead-impregnated vinyl that is used as wall cladding in dental and other x-ray situations. It is available from dental suppliers by the metre or as a ready-made apron and is contained in a material cover as with epsom salts. For information and catalogue, contact Roland Pty Ltd, Ph: 07 55962 844 or www.rolandpl.com.au
* Take homeopathic, nutritional and herbal remedies to counter the effects – ask me to include these in your treatment plan.
* Consider moving if you live (or work) near a transmitter, electricity substation or major power lines.
* Move your bed away from a fuse box, even if it is on the other side of the wall. Check the outside wall that there is not an electric hot water heater or air conditioning unit.
* Make sure your (or next door’s) TV, refrigerator, stereo (or other electrical appliance) is not on the other side of the wall from your bed. Sit at least 2 metres from the television. Keep the lid closed when photocopying.
* Turn off all electrical appliances at the main wall power switch when not in use: do not leave on standby/pilot light as this still draws current, emits some electromagnetic radiation, and the circuits in the bedroom walls will still be active. Particularly in your bedroom, inactivate all electrical appliances while you sleep. This will give at least 6-8 hours out of 24 away from this type of pollution.
* Replace your clock radio with a battery clock. These actually emit surprising high levels of radiation and draw current through the bedroom walls.
* Make sure all electric blankets and water beds are turned off at the power point while you sleep. These circuits are very close to your body and have been shown to cause miscarriage & fertility problems
* Make sure your bed does not have a metal frame, as this can pick up and conduct radiation. Wooden beds are better.
* Switch off wireless technology at night as it is still attracting and emitting signals
* Install a Circuit Disconnection Switch which eliminates the need to switch off or unplug all the appliances in your bedroom, rooms behind and beside. Also recommended for nurseries and children’s bedrooms.
* Do not use a microwave oven. Official recommendations are to leave the room when operating but food that is radiated has the proteins denatured so are unable to be digested properly and utilized by the body. Do not microwave baby’s bottles!!
* An Ioniser creates negative ions which have beneficial health effects like the sea or nature. Place near the window to circulate healthy air or on either side of your bed.
* Electromagnetic home survey: investigates high levels f radiation and provides specific recommendations for correction or minimization. Environmental Health Analysis: 02 9953 4911.
On a cold winter afternoon one of my favourite things is to bake apple crumble with the warm aromas filling the house. It is the perfect winter comfort treat that is easy to make and guaranteed to satisfy hungry stomachs. Apples are high in both soluble and insoluble fiber which is great for a healthy digestive system. The soluble fiber (pectin) helps lower cholesterol, keeps your bowels regular and stabilizes your blood sugar. This recipe uses rapadura which is a sugar before it has molasses removed, so it is lower glycaemic than raw sugar and more nutritious. It can be sourced from health food shops. Alternatively you can use maple syrup, which is lower glycaemic and more nutritious than honey, golden syrup or rice syrup. I’ve also used coconut oil or macadamia nut oil instead of margarine or vegetable oil which contain inflammatory trans fats.Filling
6 medium sized apples - approx 1 kg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract, paste or 1 vanilla bean
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Grated rind of 1 lemon
1 Tbsp grated ginger
2 cups waterCrumble topping
1 1/2 cups rolled oats (or rolled quinoa or almond meal for gluten free)
1/2 cup organic desiccated or flaked coconut
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup rapadura or organic maple syrup
3 tablespoons coconut oil, macadamia nut oil or butter
1/2 cup walnuts or macadamia nuts (optional)Method:
Preheat your oven to 180C
Cut apples into wedges with the skin left on, removing the core.
Mix apples, vanilla extract, cinnamon, lemon rind, ginger and 2 cups of water in a saucepan and simmer on the stove top until soft, stirring occasionally.
Place the stewed apple, drained of the water, into a baking dish that has been greased with coconut oil or butter.
To make the crumble, combine the rolled oats, coconut, cinnamon, vanilla, rapadura or maple syrup and walnuts until well mixed and then add softened coconut oil until crumbly.
Scatter the crumble over the top.
Bake for 30 minutes or until the crumble is golden brown.
Remove from the oven and serve alone or with fresh cream or natural yogurt.Fruit Variety:
Fold through a cup of raspberries or blueberries or the pulp of 2-3 passionfruit to the poached apple before placing crumble on top.
When in season – replace some of the apples with 2 – 3 fresh raw peaches, 6 apricots, or 1 bunch of rhubarb.
Trout with Avocado Sauce, Asparagus and Quinoa
Eat well. Live well.
- 4 x 200g trout fillets
- Salt and pepper to season
- 1 Tbsp of olive oil
- 1 Tbsp of lemon juice
- 2 ripe avocados, chopped
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 Tbsp of olive oil
- 2 bunches of asparagus, cut off the end approx. 1 cm
- 3/4 cup of quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups of water
- Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Cover, reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the covered saucepan on the burner for another 4 minutes.
- Add avocados, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil into a food processor; pulse into a creamy consistency.
- Preheat a frying pan. Combine the trout fillets, salt and pepper, olive oil and lemon juice in a bowl. Place them into a medium to hot frying pan. Cook for 5 minutes each side.
- Remove the lid and fluff the cooked quinoa with a fork. Set aside to cool completely.
- Heat a saucepan full of water, bring to boil and then place the asparagus in for 5 minutes; they should still be slightly crunchy.
- Place the trout on a bed of asparagus, spoon avocado sauce on top and serve quinoa on the side.
Bondi Barefoot 26th May
The "BONDIBarefoot" was first run in 2003 and has quickly developed into one of Australia's most unique running events. A soft sand run over 3 distances - 10km, 4km, and the Barefoot bolt. The event raises money for the North Bondi Surf Lifesaving club, which is a vital component of our community, helping to protect swimmers at Bondi Beach. This is a unique opportunity to run across Australia's most famous beach. It is a fun family day as well as a chance to get fit in the fresh air and sunshine, cheered on by all your friends and family. Whether you are slow or fast, there is a race that accommodates everyone. http://www.bondibarefoot.com.au/
Three Weeks To Go ...
On the 7th June I am heading to the U.K for a couple of weeks for a friend's wedding so book your appointments now as they are filling up fast. Stock up on your flu fighters before the cold of winter hits. If you need any supplements while I am away, both clinics will easily be able to arrange this for you.
Better Health Clinic - 02 9389 3689 The Jocelyn Centre - 02 9268 9000
When I return I will be revitalised with new creative insights and energy to meet all your health needs.
Is Heartburn Causing You Heartache?
Reflux is commonly known as heartburn as it strikes in the chest and can feel frighteningly like a heart attack. Symptoms of acid reflux may include laryngitis, hoarseness, sensation of a lump in the throat, post-nasal drip, chronic throat clearing, excessive throat mucous, sore throat, cough, spasm of the throat and/or throat pain. The issue is not with an excess of stomach acid, although it may feel that way, but with a defect in the closing of the oesophageal sphincter that separates the stomach from the oesophagus.
Several foods trigger reflux, including alcohol, chocolate, coffee, spicy foods, tomatoes, capsicums, carbonated drinks (soft drinks), junk food and citrus fruits. Not all of these foods will cause symptoms. Become acquainted with your triggers and avoid them.Tips to reduce the onset of heartburn:
Leave 3 hours between eating and bedtime so you do not go to bed on a full stomach.
Avoid coughing and throat clearing: swallow or sip water instead.
Elevate the head of your bed with a telephone book or brick.
Avoid tight clothing, overeating and excess weight.
Chew your food well and eat slowly
Lose weight if you are overweight.
• Limit any water immediately prior or during a meal as it dilutes your digestive enzymes.How to heal your heartburn:
• Eat soft foods only for 2 days to heal the oesophagus (and lining of the digestive system) from any prior damage that may have been caused by excessive acid in the past. No nuts, crackers, toast, popcorn, biscuits, breakfast cereals, hard crunchy salads/fruit. Eat soft, lightly cooked foods eg. rolled oat porridge, eggs, soups, stews, casseroles, steamed veges, cooked rice, soft fruits, mashed potatoes, yoghurt, bread.
Drink 1 Tsp – 1 Tb apple cider vinegar in a glass of warm water before meals which will help rebalance the acidity and improve digestion.
Slippery elm is a soothing demulcent powder that prevents stomach acid from resurfacing. 1-2 tsp in a glass of water after every meal allows your oesophagus to heal.
If you don't like slippery elm powder you can use raw honey instead. Having 1 tsp any time you feel discomfort or pain as well as before bed soothes and heals the oesophagus.
If on the run, carry a Red Delicious Apple with you. These apples contain a chemical which is a natural antacid.
For my patients, I prescribe herbal medicines or nutritional supplements that coat and heal the gut lining and rebalance your digestion and stomach pH. These are individually prescribed depending on the cause, such as that old friend, stress.
We are so lucky to live in Australia and have access to a sumptuous array of fresh fish to choose from. This brown rice risotto is deliciously filling for an autumn evening.
- 1 1/2 cups brown rice (soaked overnight in water)
- 1 large piece of blue eyed cod
- 10 fresh prawns
- 1 green capsicum
- 1/4 cup of coconut oil/butter/ghee
- 1 leek
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- Large handful of green beans
- Fresh thyme or oregano
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 zucchini
- 1 fresh red chili
- 1 lemon/lime
- Start by cooking your brown rice in the vegetable stock cube
- Chop beans, capsicum, leek, chili and garlic and stir fry in the coconut oil
- Next add the blue eyed cod and prawns and cook for a further 5-10 minutes
- Once the brown rice is cooked, add it into the wok. Add a cup or two of water depending on how much sauce you would like.
- Add some freshly chopped thyme or oregano
- I served my risotto with some fresh rocket and a squeeze of lemon - simply delicious!
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Tomorrow is ANZAC Day, 25th April which celebrates the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War. It is a time to honor those who have fought for our freedom today but also an opportunity to remember the Australian tradition of mateship.
Mateship is a distinct Australian quality which brings our community together. Enjoy these healthy Anzac biscuits to share with your family and friends on your ANZAC Day.
- 1 ½ cups rolled oats
- ½ cup desiccated coconut
- ½ cup chopped macadamia nuts
- 2 ½ tablespoons coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup or raw honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat the oven to 160C
- Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon or blend in a food processor briefly.
- Roll out and flatten biscuits and place onto a baking tray lined with baking paper
- Bake for 20 -30 minutes until golden brown