By Alison Maunder, naturopath, herbalist, nutritionist
Winter has been a little late arriving this year. Despite this, with the sun lower in the sky, our vitamin D levels can fall by up to a massive 30% in winter. When our vitamin D levels drop, so can our general health and well-being. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in the immune system protecting us from infections and ensuring resilience against autoimmune diseases and some cancers.
By Karen Latter, naturopath, nutritionist and herbalist
I feel that this year with the bonus of a late Easter rolling into Anzac Day that there is genuine excitement from everyone, whether it is time to holiday, to be with friends and family, to rest or to simply slow down and take stock, Easter is certainly a welcome break. And as we slow, we allow room for mindfulness and an opportunity to lighten our cognitive load and gain the many health benefits. WHAT the heck is mindfulness?
Living in this fast paced world and being constantly ‘on-call’ with little or no downtime can certainly have a negative impact on our health and mood. As Hayley mentioned in last week’s blog a cascade of physiological events takes place in the body that triggers changes in mood and our general wellbeing. So much of our lives seem beyond our control – genetics, the environment, externally imposed stressors - so let’s look at things we CAN control if we really put our stressed out minds to it – diet, exercise, scheduling time out for self nurture. For this week’s blog, let’s focus on diet.
On a daily basis, adrenaline and cortisol are pumping around our body, changing our biochemistry and having huge effects on our health. Our body cannot keep this high level of activity for very long without causing harm. ….Headaches, fatigue, brain fog, irritable bowel syndrome, high blood pressure, sugar cravings, fatigue, weight gain, thyroid issues, poor immunity, low libido, hot flushes, anxiety, depression, insomnia, inflammation… These are all symptoms of chronic stress!
As we reach the middle of the year, there is one theme that seems to be recurring with every patient I see…. Stress, fatigue, anxiety, lethargy, low mood. We are all over worked, burnt out and stressed. ‘Stress’ is a word that we hear used often. We have all felt what it is like to have a ‘stressful’ day or week (or year!). However the correct meaning of stress does not just refer to how we feel emotionally. It refers to a process of changes that occur in our body when our body is put under intense pressure or workload. To understand stress, we need to understand about the fight or flight response.