INSPIRATIONAL PARENT: ABBY SOARES

Thrilled to have the passionate and talented Abby Soares of Nourish Health as an inspirational parent, wow this mum is mind blowing with her amazing dedication to great food and excellent health.
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Many moons ago I worked as a childrens nurse in Aucklands Starship Childrens Hospital.  I had the pleasure of meeting Abby through a mutual friend at the local gym. Since then Abby has created a wonderful Holistic Health Centre, where they support their clients with nutritional and lifestyle changes to reclaim their health and happiness, sounds like the kind of place I would LOVE to be.  Abby specialises in childrens and womens health and has a really awesome sound knowledge of gut health, immunity, fatigue, weight loss and pregnancy care.  I love following her on facebook and seeing what creations she has made (always super colourful) and who she has been collaborating with (remember inspirational parent Anita from The Kefir Company?!!)
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I have watched Abby build her amazing business to truely help families thrive.  Her passion for real food and reversing sickness is astounding, I love how she made the changes initially for her own family and went on to help those around her.
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So come, read all about it…..
HOW OLD IS YOUR CHILD?
I have three amazing boys who are 10, 8 and 6 years.  I love being a Mama, its absolutely the best job ever.  Being connected to them feeds my soul and makes me my happiest self (apart from the fights!!!)
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WHAT IS YOUR FOOD PHILOSOPHY FOR YOUR CHILD
We aim to eat whole foods from nature for 90-95% of our meals.   We eat mostly organic and try to stick to the foods that are in season wherever possible.  I truly feel that nature always gets it right  when it comes to food and human intervention with food processing is so damaging to our beautiful bodies.
I believe that the gut is the foundation of our health so that is a major focus in our family.  We eat lots of soups and broths made from organic bones and meat in winter.  to keep our gut healthy.  We eat foods filled with good bacteria such as coconut kefir and sauerkraut to constantly repopulate the good bacteria in our digestive system.  We eat huge amounts of greens and veggies to feed the good bacteria and clean our bodies of toxins.  We eat eggs and meat from organic animals to build and strengthen  our bodies and small amounts of activated nuts/seeds and non glutenous grains.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO FEED YOUR CHILDREN THE WAY YOU DO?
 We has been on a massive journey recovering my eldest from Dyspraxia and allergies and my middle son from chronic sinus infections.  Their health and happiness is so important to me, if it means working a bit harder in the kitchen to nourish them to optimal health then I’m happy to do it.   All three boys are so healthy now, they’re gorgeous boys who very rarely get sick and have so much energy (too much sometimes!)
If they’re happy and healthy then I know I’ve done my best by them.
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TIPS FOR TRAVELLING FAMILIES
Travelling locally I always pack the boys lunch boxes full of veggies, fruit, meat, raw baking etc.  I take extra snacks as well such as smoothies, fruit and nuts.  I usually have some emergency packet food such as bars that are made with nuts and dried fruit.  I usually google whole food cafes so that if we need to eat out that we can make good choices away from home.
Travelling overseas I do the same…take our lunch boxes and a mini blender with us.  Do a big shop at a local organic or whole food store when we arrive so there is plenty for everyone to eat.  I make lunch boxes every day and take them with us so we don’t get caught short.  We search for whole food cafe’s to grab a smoothie and some raw baking!  Being prepared and organised is the key to staying on track.
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3 TOP SNACKS
– fruit
– veggies
– boiled eggs or cold meat
simple food is the way to go!
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HOW DO I LOOK AFTER MYSELF AS WELL AS MY KIDS
I play heaps of sport.  I love horse riding, it makes me feel so happy to my core, just the smell of my gorgeous horse is enough to make me melt with happiness.  I surf when ever I can which isn’t nearly enough! Being in the ocean is the ultimate way to get away from all your worries, connect with nature, get some sun and exercise. I also play netball once a week with an awesome team of girls, I love it and play touch rugby in summer.
I eat really well, the same as the kids really.  I eat heaps of greens and veggies and good quality meats.   Greens are so amazing for energy so I have lots of smoothies and veggie juice, it keeps me happy and gives me enough energy to keep up with my sports mad tribe.
I have such lovely friends, a super caring and supportive husband and family so I have really good support.  Having that lovely network to share your problems, hopes and dreams with is so important.
WHAT BRINGS BALANCE TO YOUR FAMILY
Time in nature.  Being out of the house and at the beach, on the ocean or in the bush makes everyone feel happy and calm.  We try to re wild ourselves as often as possible.
Also being with our wider family, having all the kids together playing and happy, this connectedness is so important to our life balance.
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WHAT IS YOUR FAVOOURITE ACTIVITY TO DO AS A FAMILY
We all love the beach and love surfing.  I love doing day trips up North, spending the whole day at the beach.  All surfing and swimming and playing  beach cricket or touch.  I think I’m definitely made to be a Mum of boys!
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Recipe

Kumara Brownie

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Kumara brownie’s are a massive favourite in our house, they are delicious but also really filling and healthy! Make a double batch as they keep really well in the freezer and are perfect for lunch boxes or afternoon snacks when friends pop over.
Ingredients
  • 1 medium sweet potato – 2-3 cups when grated
  • 2 organic eggs
  • ½ cup melted coconut oil
  • ⅓ cup honey (or maple syrup)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract/paste
  • ½ cup raw cacao powder, sifted (or cocoa if find cacao to rich)
  • 1 teaspoon aluminum free baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2½ tablespoon coconut flour
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 185 °C (365 °F), make sure the oven is hot before you put in the brownies in.
  2. Combine grated sweet potato, eggs, vanilla, honey and coconut oil oil in a large mixing bowl and stir together until well incorporated. Then add cacao powder, baking powder and baking soda and stir. Finally add coconut flour. Avoid adding too much coconut flour as it will absorb too much moisture which will result in drier brownies.
  3. Once combined, pour the mixture into a baking tray lined with greased baking paper. I used a 9″/23cm square tin.
  4. Cook for 25-30 minutes. Remove the tin and cool for 5-10 minutes before carefully removing the brownie cake form the tin. Cut them into squares and dust with a little cacao powder or melt some dark chocolate in a bowl over boiling water and drizzle it over the top. Serve with raspberries or strawberries and maybe some fresh cream or coconut yoghurt to be extra decadent.

Enjoy

from

Abby

x x x

THANK YOU Abby for your love of nutrition, family health and taking care of you too!!!

inspirational parent: Tui Fleming

Social media is an interesting place.  I spend way too much time there, which my husband totally hates, but sometimes it proves fruitful, and luckily for me, a few weeks ago it was.

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Tui Fleming

Tui is an Auckland mother of 2 girls.  Tui and I actually go way back, to high school years, it was great to reconnect to her through Facebook, as one evening a mutual friend posted about Tui’s book.

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Dear Mummy, You’re Important Too

The book title caught my eye, and I dug a little deeper (ok I totally stalked) and found a like-hearted soul in Tui, and instantly reached out to collaborate.

Tui has only this week launched her book: ‘Dear Mummy, You’re Important Too’.   Described on Dear Mummy’s website ‘Unlike other how-to parenting books, this book has mummies as it’s priority – at it’s heart. It understands you want to be the best mummy you can. It’s premise: that means being the best YOU you can be. This book offers musings, motivations and morsels to nourish a mummy’s soul’.

Tui has a lot of beautiful things to say about her family, thank you Tui for your honesty and your time to share with us your ‘musings’ (my new favourite word!).

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How old are your children?

I have two dynamite daughters: 4 ½ and 3 years old.

What is your food philosophy for your children?

There are so many things I ‘should’ say here. But shoulds are so often derived from other peoples’ expectations. The fact is, I don’t have a food philosophy for my children – well not one I’ve pre-considered anyway. I approached food differently with my first than I did my second daughter. It was circumstantial: with my first I had all the time in the world, it was just she and I at home together each day. So she received homemade solids and didn’t touch sugar until her first birthday. My second had many more ready-made baby pouches and I’m pretty sure she had her first marshmallow before she was one. If I had to define it, my philosophy would center around balance. Of course children need their fruit & veg; they need good quality protein. But I also think they should be allowed treats sometimes. 100s and 1000s sprinkles on fairy bread never hurt us growing up. Let children be children. Also, let them have a voice and listen to it. If they really hate something, so long as they’ve had a try, let it go. They’re little people. Respect them. Educate and encourage but don’t forcefly-d0ip7l5GB63bu10wSVXgt9VnwXnrNJwGCDPmJHg-846x400.jpg

Tui’s own French Onion Soup

What inspires you to feed your children the way you do?

I’m inspired to live a healthy, balanced life. A couple of years ago I tried going sugar-free. Then I lost my way. Last year I got more structured about it and signed up for the I Quit Sugar 8 week programme. I love baking, cooking and discovering new flavour combinations so I’m inspired by people like Sarah Wilson from I Quit Sugar and Eleanor Ozich from Petite Kitchen who continually fuel my mind with innovative new ways to feed myself and my children.

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Home  Made Muesli

What tips have you got for travelling families?

My travel-day secret is “eggy for brekkie”. It’s tested and true that when you fuel yourself with a good protein-rich breakfast then it’ll sustain you through the morning – on a travel day this could be a long transit until you get the chance to stop for your next good meal. When my girls eat “eggy for brekkie” they can go hours without needing (aka whingeing for!) more food. I also give them eggs on kindy mornings for the same reason – it gets them through a couple of hours of energetic play until morning tea.

What are your three top snacks?

Popcorn – cheap, quick to make, healthy

Yoghurt suckies – I buy The Collective brand as it has no added nasties

One of my healthy homemade treats like my Double Fruit Drops

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How do you look after yourself as well as your children?

I’ve just written a book about this! I believe that to be the best mummy you can be means being the best YOU you can be, and that means putting yourself first. This starts with your mindset and a base understanding of self – who you are, what you value, what lights you up: “Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?” (brilliant quote from Danielle LaPorte)

Motherhood is a journey, and so is finding oneself again after becoming a mummy. My book ‘Dear Mummy, You’re Important Too’ offers musings, motivations and morsels for a mummy’s soul, to help you reclaim and restore yourself – because you (we!) are important too!

Available at www.dearmummy.co.nzCaH0GmeIoDawEXQAhsyyZIrTG7UVLofBrGNMZzh733c-1.jpg

What brings balance to your family?

A calm, balanced family life starts with a calm, happy mummy. Happiness comes from living your life your way. For me, it’s fulfilling my need for independence and achievement by working 2 days per week, and ensuring vitality with a gym and yoga session each week, which helps to sustain a solid foundation for our family to thrive on. Then together we balance the busyness of our lives with time away at the family bach, family walks, opening up our house to fresh air and enlivening it with music… and lest I forget, snuggles in the morning when the girls climb into bed with us.

What is your favourite activity to do together as a family?

For me it’s going to the beach. There are no walls, no technology, just fresh air, sun, sand and surf. My grandparents had a bach at Whangamata on the Coromandel in New Zealand, so I grew up spending every holiday of my childhood there. It’s my soul space and I feel so lucky to be able to share it with my own daughters now.

When I asked my husband this question, he answered ‘family walks because we all enjoy it, it gets us out of the house, it’s quality time together – and exercise’: the same reasons really, why I love the beach. I guess this shows even within a family, the members can have a different perspective of what’s the family favourite. It doesn’t really matter what you’re doing; it’s how it’s being done – with intention, together, and full engagementae04e624-cbe3-44e9-82a1-de1bffeca27c.jpg

Relaxing and having extra snuggles with her young daughter

Do you have a favourite inspirational quote that lights up your life?

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‘When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.’ – Wayne Dyer.

And one perhaps a little less philosophical, which I share here specifically for mums: ‘Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, “I’ll try again tomorrow.”’ – Mary Anne Rachmacher.

I share dozens of other inspirational quotes in my book, sourced from a wide range of thinkers, writers and doers, who have all inspired me on my journey. If you choose to read ‘Dear Mummy, You’re Important Too’ I hope their words will illuminate your path, as they have mine.

Tui this was divine.  indeed very nourishing, super refreshing and a wonderful reminder to mum’s out there that they are important too.  Untitled-1-846x400.jpg

Photographs thanks to Tui and her Dear Mummy website.

inspirtational parent: Dr Kate Wood

There are some pretty phenomenal people in the world, and I find myself very lucky to know Dr Kate Wood.  Kate is an incredible chiropractor at Health Space (with acupuncture and kinesiology to boot), an author and adoring mother to gorgeous Maxim.  Believing that health is your greatest wealth, Kate inspires everyone she meets, from her daily care of herself, to her extensive knowledge and care of her clients.  Kate oozes wellbeing, she shines, she glows, she makes the most of her life, thoroughly enjoys being a first time mum and provides the best care for her growing family.

 

Most recently Kate has written a book, ‘An Integrated Journey Back to Health and Happiness’ about her experience with Lyme Disease, and how she regained her health through her journey of recovery, using an array of integrated practices.  The book has some great tips on how to get healthy and stay healthy from a physical, biochemical, emotional and spiritual perspective.  You can read more about her book here

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So clear the kids off for 10mins and get ready to become inspired.

 

How many children do you have?

I have one beautiful miracle child called Maxim

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What is your food philosophy for your children?IMG_7930.JPG

The food philosophy I have for myself is the same one I hope to inspire in my family. Food is about nourishing body, mind and soul so we can enjoy optimal health and amazing quality of life. As such I always lead by example when teaching Maxim about food. I always sit down with Maxim so we can eat together and he can watch and learn from me. We eat predominantly fresh, seasonal, sustainable, certified organic whole foods, in a mixture of textures, flavours, colours and temperatures. Nothing with numbers, preservatives, flavours, colours or anything that is not “real” food. Daily staples include lots of vegetables, fermented foods, bone broth and cod liver oil. A lot of what we eat is inspired from what our ancestors ate. I provide Maxim with options but he always decides what he wants to eat, when he would like to eat it and how much he will eat. (I want him to learn to listen to his body as each persons needs will vary from day to day). I believe that by using different herbs and super-foods you can enjoy maximum flavour and we never feel like we are missing out!

 

What inspires you to feed your children the way you do?IMG_7814.JPG

I believe that what we put in our mouth, and how we digest our food, directly affects the quality of our health and subsequently our life. Having had health challenges myself I changed my diet a lot to get well. I was even more motivated during preconception, pregnancy and now breastfeeding to eat the best quality food to give my son the best possible start to life. As he is only 11 months old I have the advantage of being able to choose exactly what goes on his plate, but I always allow him to choose when and how much he eats. As he gets older I plan to guide him and educate him about healthy choices for his tummy rather than restrict or not allow him to have ‘unhealthy’ food choices that his peers may be having. I want him to learn to read labels and choose for himself not to eat foods laden with sugar and additives. I understand it may not always be easy and every child is different but I am providing him with a framework and inspiring him through action everyday to make healthy choices. There will come a time when I may not be as influential in his life as I am now, so I want to ensure I give him the best chance of living and feeling what a healthy lifestyle can do for him and hope he chooses that for himself one day. that he has I am great at adapting recipes, using spices and making whole food treats and look forward to sharing these with him to bring balance to his diet. I use the term “sometimes foods” for whole food treats and “everyday foods” for those that need to be eaten everyday to stay strong, lean, energetic and healthy (such as fermented foods, fruit, vegetables and lean grass fed meats).

 

What tips have you got for travelling families?

I don’t travel much but I do know when I go to visit my family in the country it is often much harder to source good quality ingredients. Its all about being prepared. If you have an esky or a car fridge then you can pre prepare some food and snacks to take with you. Often we do a big shop and take it with us and take some non perishable items like tinned tuna, rice crackers or corn chips to snack on as we travel. We always look up places to eat so we can hit the ground running when we get there or know exactly where we will make stops along the way.

 

What are your 3 top snacks?

Fruit (especially seasonal berries)

Activated nuts

Super smoothies

 

How do you look after yourself as well as your family?

I am very big on making my health a priority so I am healthy enough to look after everyone else. Where possible I prioritise exercise, sleep, meditation and relaxation as well as my nutrition. Some things are out of your control, like when you have a sick child, so its all about doing your best. If you lead a healthy lifestyle then you will get sick less, you will deal with sleep deprivation and stress better and bounce back quicker when you do get sick or injured. I have a weekly schedule and pre plan meals / shopping lists. I always make extra food when I cook so I left overs for the next day, and if I know I have a busy week coming up I will freeze food (better than eating take away). If I am away I pre prepare food for my husband and son.

 

What brings balance to your family?

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Honestly it’s being organised. If I am away or get sick, or have a sick child, everything goes out the window and I feel out of control. Sometimes it’s important to just let go and get the job done at the time and then have measures in place to bounce back. Scheduling in “me time” and “husband time” is really important as once you have kids life gets more hectic and time seems to speed up. Taking time to yourself and with your partner is essential to maintain balance and remember why you started your family in the first place. Asking for help is another key way to keep balance.

 

What is your favourite activity to do together as a family?

We absolutely love being outdoors. Whether it be the park, going for a bush walk or going to the beach. The beach is probably our absolute favourite place in the world. Maxim and I are both water signs, so we are at our happiest in or near water. The grounding nature of the beach makes us all so happy!

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Do you have a favourite inspirational quote that lights up your life?

Someone special in my life died when I was younger and I always regretted not spending more time with them. At her funeral I made a pact with myself that I would never have regrets again, so I make decisions in my life by asking will I regret this if I don’t do it / try it etc. So the quote I live by is “no regrets”. The quote I’m inspired by is one by Buddha; “What you think you become. What you feel you attract. What you imagine, you create”.

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Thanks Kate, it has been awesome to watch your family thrive and thank you for sharing such a large part of you with us.

mindd business

Well I just sat down to look at my blog and I realised it has been a while since I’ve churned out anything! wow!

Which means life has been full and busy! Phew… I havn’t even kept up with the 52 Project! My problem was my camera cord went missing and I couldn’t load any photos!

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In the meantime, I attended the Mindd Foundation Practitioner training which was truly mind blowing.  So many inspirational health professionals under one roof, and all talking my language (well sometimes it went right over my head, but I tried my hardest to keep up!)

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Rafael popped by for a visit

I learned all about gut health and how it is such an integral part to disease processes, ways which we can heal the gut and improve our health.  In the practitioner training we were part of the Medical Academy of Paediatric Special Needs (MAPS), where the focus was to “provide education and long-term support for practitioners, ensuring the quality and consistency of medical care for children with autism and related chronic conditions.”  Learning all about gastrointestinal health, the microbiome, methylation, toxicity, environmental health, mitochondrial health and how to apply this knowledge to the success in recovering children from Autism.  For me the rockstar of the weekend was discussing nutritional medicine.  I constantly think ‘how can we implement this in mainstream healthcare’, and often feel I just can’t get the ball rolling.photo (4)photo (6)Meeting Dr Leila Masson

So through Mindd, I am starting with my colleagues.  Nurses.

Here is a piece I wrote for the Mindd Foundation to try encourage nurses to start considering nutritional medicine:

Nutritional medicine is part of the foundation of good health. As nurses, it is often overlooked in our practice as we race around and tick off our daily planners, who has time to stop and think about what has been delivered on a child’s meal tray when there is obs to do! It is time it became important, there is so much more to food than calories, carbohydrates and protein. If we begin to look at it from a scientific point of view, and apply our biochemistry knowledge to the pathophysiology of human diseases, we will begin to truly understand.   Understand why it is important that the liver works properly to dispose of old neurotransmitters, hormones and other by-products of normal metabolism, understand that gut flora is one of the biggest players in neurological and psychiatric conditions (Campbell-McBride, 2010), and finally understand how nutritional medicine brings it all together.

What drives the biochemical processes in the body? The simple answer is nutrients. Essentially it is micronutrients that our bodies depend on to maintain proper functioning of all the biochemical pathways. For instance it takes iron to carry oxygen in our blood and deliver to cells throughout the body. Selenium and iodine are required to assist with the healthy function of the thyroid gland. Vitamin D is vital for maintaining normal blood levels of calcium and phosphate, which in turn are required for mineralisation of the bones. Everything that we eat can impact on these biochemical processes, and nutritional medicine is essential when treating symptoms or diseases. Understanding nutritional medicine enables nurses to treat the cause and support the body in healing by pulling back the layers of the presenting symptoms, and discovering they are often the result of poor nutritional factors.

Nutritional Medicine encompasses nourishing the body with many different nutrients; ensuring there is adequate digestion and absorption of these nutrients and taking into consideration the environmental factors that contribute to the quality of the nutrients.

Currently our environment is very toxin heavy. From the crops harvested to feed us fresh vegetables, to the cows reared to supply us with meat, the environment plays a major role in providing optimal quality of nutrients for bodies to digest and absorb and utilize on a daily basis.

The statistics of childhood disease trends in Australia are frightening*

  •  Up to 70% of Australian children are low in iodine, which adversely impacts on IQ.
  •  Today allergies affect 1 in 3 Australian children, Asthma 1 in 4, ADHD 1 in 10 and Autism 1 in 90.
  •  Childhood cancer, diabetes, obesity and depression have each well more than doubled over the past 2 decades.*

*Visit mindd.org/donations for research references

These statistics can be dramatically changed, if health care professionals, such as nurses, begin to understand the importance of nutritional medicine, and learn to how to apply in practice throughout the broad range of nursing modalities. Educating parents is a start, explaining how nutritional deficiencies have a damaging effect on digestion and absorption of vitamins, minerals and amino acids (Campbell-McBride, 2010). Encouraging families to become interested in how nutritional medicine can help their child with asthma, ease their child’s itchy eczema skin and begin to recover their child from autism.

Nurses skills are needed, because we already understand how the body works and how disease can manifest. Paediatric nurses have direct access to families, and as seen every day in a hospital, these families rely on nurses to have up to date, scientific, peer-reviewed, evidence based information. These families deserve an integrative approach to their children’s health care.

Skills that nurses can offer:

-Good listeners, parents respond well to nurses that listen and offer solutions. Nurses become particularly good at this on a day-to-day basis, as seen by building good rapport with patients and families

-Excellent knowledge of body systems and functions

-Ability to multi-task

-Empathy to families

-Excellent communication skills within a multi-disciplinary team

-Ability to cope under pressure

-Nutritional advice, once given the proper training, nurses can implement this into their health care and plant seeds for families to grow their knowledge

– Developing a network to promote effective integrative healthcare, the more nurses who learn about nutritional medicine the bigger the community and the more we can address some of these serious health issues and concerns

What you can learn:

Tens of thousands of children worldwide are in need of well-trained integrative and biomedical practitioners who can effectively treat the core cause of neurobiological and auto-immune disorders such as Autism, ADHD, allergies and asthma.

MAPS training (The Medical Academy of Paediatric Special Needs) is a structured to provide a clinic-focused, evidence based training in the field of complex paediatric conditions.

Learning objectives: —Environmental Medicine ACM

Achievement of educational objectives, given the allotted time for each presentation:

  • Review normal detoxification pathways
  • Examine the role of environmental toxicology in childhood disorders
  • Evaluate various laboratory assessments and biomarkers as they relate to toxicology
  • Distinguish between acute and chronic toxicity
  • Understand the concept of body burden as related to toxicity
  • Examine the impact of environmental toxicants in children with autism, ADHD and related childhood disorders
  • Identify and review various methods of detoxification
  • Identify ways to implement toxicological related treatments into clinical practice
  • Review actual case histories of patients with autism and other neurodevelopmental problems to understand appropriate testing, workup and treatments as related to toxicology

Learning objectives: —Gastrointestinal ACM

Achievement of educational objectives, given the allotted time for each presentation:

  • Recognize the role that various diets have on autistic behaviours and symptoms and understand how to implement these diets
  • Describe the appropriate testing and workup for nutritional abnormalities found in autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Evaluate various laboratory assessments and biomarkers as they relate to the gastrointestinal micro biota and abnormalities
  • Review the role that dysbiosis plays in childhood disorders and treatments for dysbiosis
  • Identify the role that gastrointestinal abnormalities play in children with autism
  • Identify ways to implement gastrointestinal related treatments into practice
  • Review actual case histories of patients with autism and other neurodevelopmental problems to understand appropriate testing, workup and treatments of gastrointestinal-related problems

References:

Campbell-Mcbride N 2010, Gut And Psychology Syndrome: Natural Treatment for Autism, Dyspraxia, ADD,, Dyslexia, A.D.H.D, Depression Schizophrenia, Medinform Pub, Cambridge, UK

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A portrait of my child once a week, every week for 2015

It’s bliss as Rafael finally goes to sleep after some hard nights teething.

inspirational parent: kylie lesueur

I have been on a lot of travels in my time.  They all started when I was 22 and I went to the USA to work in a kids summer camp…it was the best thing I ever did!  I made a tonne of friends, whom I still cherish to this day 13 years later.  Amazing,  This beautiful mama is one of those friends.  We were joined at the hip throughout our summer, those were the days!IMG_3867

Kylie is now a wonderful mama to two little gorgeous babes, and although she says she is a stay at home mum, she really is a little entrepreneur with her groovy Indi + Hix company, making hair accessories and bibs trendy.IMG_3864

I love how Kylie has embraced health and wellness in their lives, and truly believes in nourishing herself so she can be the best for her family.  The best health, the best role model and the best example of taking care of herself.

How old is your child?

India-Rose is 2.3 years old and Hendrix is 6 months

 

What is your food philosophy for your child?

Our family philosophy is clean, fresh nourishing food. Plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and whole grains. We stick to 80/20 and everything in moderation.

What inspires you to feed your child the way you do?

Having a daughter was my initial inspiration. I want her to have a good association with food, health and body image (something I didn’t have growing up). Going back to basics on nutrition and fuelling our bodies with nutritious, colourful foods to make us feel and look good. I also took on my own mission for better health after becoming a mum. When Hendrix was born I was a mum to 2 under 2. Not feeling great wasn’t an option for me. More than ever I needed to eat clean nutritious food to ensure I had the daily energy and stamina to keep up.

What tips have you got for travelling families?

Lots of snacks to keep the little ones content

What are your 3 top snacks?

Bliss balls (Indi thinks they are a treat)

Wholemeal pita bread crackers (olive oil and Himalayan salt)

Coconut chips, seeds, nuts, dried fruit mix

 

How do you look after yourself as well as your child?

This one is a little tricky. I’m guilty of absorbing myself into mummy life and forgetting about myself. My new years resolution was to find more balance. I do yoga once a week; try to get to the gym. I love sewing. I find it relaxing and therapeutic

What brings balance to your family?

The simple things. Story time at night. Eating dinner as a family. A walk to the park together.

 

What is your favourite activity to do together as a family?

Camping. We have a caravan so try to get away as often as we can. Technology gets turned off and it’s all about reconnecting.

 

Do you have a favourite inspirational quote that lights up your life?

Be kind to unkind people. They need it the most.

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Be sure to check out Kylie on Instagram and FB too for her wonderful collection

https://www.facebook.com/indiandhix?fref=ts

http://indihix.bigcartel.com/

inspirational parent: charlotte carr

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Every now and then someone comes along to knock me off my feet.  Let me introduce Charlotte Carr, mama extraordinaire to the gorgeous Willow.  Creator of Bubbayumyum, Charlotte’s journey of restoring health to her family struck a chord with me.  After reading a bit about her through my local Facebook parents page, I dug a little deeper and was instantly impressed with her story.   This mama did everything in her power to begin to heal her child, and she explains her experience to be ‘a journey that helped heal my little man’s compromised immune system, reverse toxicity and illness, and enabled him to heal and thrive’.  Charlotte worked with an impressive team of integrated health experts, which inspired her to study nutrition and become a health coach.  She makes all her food from scratch, ensuring maximum nutrient intake, specific for Willows needs.  From this came her blog, then a collaborative effort with naturopath Helen Padarin & Pete Evans to produce a book (out soon in March!)unnamed…and now, to top off her awesomness, she has joined Pete Evans on his Paleo Way tour.  Charlotte does this to help educate and guide other parents, inspiring them with knowledge and tools to provide their families with excellent health.

How old is your child?

My little magic man is 2.

What is your food philosophy for your child?

We concentrate on foods to nourish and thrive. Loads of vegetables and lots of good saturated fats. Small amounts of protein from sustainable sources and organic produce where possible. We embrace wonderful nuts and seeds, beautiful land and sea vegetables and ethically sourced produce as well as the use of fermented foods. Wills also adores seasonal berries. Basically no numbers no packets no weird preservatives. Just really simple normal fresh produce. Exactly how ir was for our grandparents before everything became processed.

What inspires you to feed your child the way you do?

I saw first hand how food can be medicine. As soon as we implemented changes in Willows diet we saw so many changes. I adore food too so I love learning about the produce, where it’s from and how I can make it into a quick yummy dish.

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What tips have you got for travelling families?

Look for wonderful organic farmers markets in the area and look up local butchers and health stores. We love to pack food when travelling and I’ve got lots of yummy recipes on my blog that are great while travelling. Sometimes I even get groceries delivered to where we are staying for our day of arrival. All the major stores deliver. That means I’m all stocked up and ready. It also saves loads of money as we are not spending on bits and bobs. We travel almost every weekend interstate so we always plan ahead.

What are your 3 top snacks?

We love to snack on avocados, berries and yummy macadamia nuts. We also love seaweed snacks too. Because our diet is full fat though there is not a lot of snacking. Its generally just eating when we are hungry.

How do you look after yourself as well as your child?

We now all eat the same so it’s incredibly easy. Making separate meals is so much work. I know things will change and there will be fussier times but for now I kind of work out ways for us all to be eating meals we can all eat…or easily adapt. I’m a huge fan of smoothies when I’m on the run and really busy. I also always make sure I have fermented vegetables and fermented drinks …oh and water. Lots of water and herbal tea. I learnt early that If I’m not well and thriving then neither will my family be. So I’m always making sure I’m eating beautiful whole foods. And that I have time out for me.

What brings balance to your family?

I think everyone is always struggling with this one. For us It’s an ongoing conversation. My husband is incredibly creative and spiritual so it’s important for him to try to find the space and time to do so. A struggle with an active 2-year-old obsessed with dancing and cuddles!

We have to work out “our” time too. Relationship time. Whether it be a movie and a meal or some time together in the park. It’s so important to honour and respect that time. My bother and niece are wonderful supports and help with playtime with Willow on the weekend. Even if it’s a quick swim and a bite to eat. It makes an incredible difference to connect even if it’s a stolen 30 mins.

What is your favourite activity to do together as a family?

We love the beach and we love the park. Anytime together is precious.bubba 2

Do you have a favourite inspirational quote that lights up your life?

“Things have ,and always will, only ever get better and better and better”

Thank you Bubbayumyum!  Here is a recipe for her AMAZING Baby Building Broth ‘the queen’ of Charlotte’s Kitchen

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1.7 kg (3lb. 5oz.) bony chicken parts (necks, backs, breastbones and wings – see Notes)

2 – 4 chicken feet (optional)

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Purified filtered water (see Notes)

Optional for 6–8 months: mixed veggies such as celery, garlic, leek carrots, pumpkin, sweet potato or taro

METHOD

Place the chicken pieces in a stockpot or large saucepan; add 5 litres (5¼ qt. / 21 cups) of cold water, add the vinegar (to help draw out the minerals), add some sea salt, and leave to stand for 30 minutes – 1 hour. Bring to the boil, continuously skimming off the skin and foam that forms on the surface of the liquid. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 6 – 12 hours. The longer you cook the broth the more the flavours will develop. If you are after a super-flavoursome broth, try cooking the bones first in a pan with a little coconut oil before adding them to the water.

If you are making a broth with added veggies, add them in at the end of the cooking time. Allow the broth to cool slightly before straining the broth through a fine sieve into a large storage container. Set aside the vegetables and use them for a ‘super mash’. The bones are great in compost. Pour the broth into glass jars, mason jars or mini silicon moulds (medical grade silicone) and be sure to leave an inch or so at the top of the glass jars to allow for settling and fats to solidify.

Cover and place the broth in your refrigerator. A fat layer will form at the top when it is cooled – this is great fat for cooking your meats and veggies in. Store the broth in covered containers in your refrigerator or freezer. Never throw out the fat. Fat is GOOD and great to use for cooking your meat and veggies.

The broth can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or frozen for up to 3 months. Date the broth going into the fridge.  If refrigerated longer than 4 days, bring it back to the boil before using. Don’t use after 7 days.

(I just cut and pasted the recipe, visit Bubbayumyum to see notes and more info, it’s awesome!)

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A portrait of my child, once a week, every week for 2015

Rafael spent lots of time with his grandparents this weekend.  I love this snap his poppa took, he looks like a little bird.  Poppa got a new camera for his birthday so happily got down to business taking some great photos.

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A portrait of my child once a week, every week for 2015

Rafael rolls around on my bed giggling to himself.  I love how content and happy with life he is.  It continues to blow my mind that he is exclusively breast fed and grows so strong and healthy every day.  We are heading into ‘real food’ territory and I look forward to exploring this and applying my nutrition passion to his growing needs

Im enjoying Practicing Simplicity’s beautiful blog and being part of The 52 Project

the sunny vitamin

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Nature is incredible.  I love how when autumn starts, we are provided with fresh oranges and mandarins to ensure our Vitamin C intake.  When spring begins, the hours of daylight become longer, indicating that winter has come to end and it is time to get our hibernating bodies out into the sunshine.  Why is it important that we do this?  Because our Vitamin D levels are low and need to be replenished.  And lucky for us, mother nature provides a great source for Vitamin D to be made in our skin for us direct from the sun.  We also can access great vitamin D from food and supplement sources.  We are slowly heading in Autumn, so we all need to ensure good vitamin D levels and continue to build them.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN D

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We need it…recent research is showing it is one of the most beneficial vitamins for our health.  It is very important to make sure your muscles, heart, lungs and brain can work well, and incredibly vitamin D contributes to this.   A one stop shop for building stronger bones, protecting against disease, enhancing our immune systems, treating numerous disorders and ensuring optimal health and well-being.

As explained at The vitamin D Council :The vitamin D that you get in your skin from sunlight, and the vitamin D from supplements, has to be changed by your body a number of times before it can be used. Once it’s ready, your body uses it to manage the amount of calcium in your blood, bones and gut and to help cells all over your body to communicate properly.

HOW CAN I MAKE SURE MY CHILD GETS ENOUGH VITAMIN D?vitamin-d3-sun

Our clever bodies make vitamin D when our bare skin is exposed to sunlight, and it happens in less time than it take to make our skin go pink (we do not want our skin to go pink!).  Best time for this to happen is the morning time, between 8am and 10am, before harmful UV rays begin to be at dangerous levels.  The more skin you can expose the better.  It won’t happen if you put sunscreen or moisturiser on your skin beforehand either, the skin needs to be completely bare.

It’s pretty scary exposing your childs precious skin to direct sunlight, it’s so new and perfect!  It has been drilled into us to avoid the sun at all cost, cover up, slip slop slap.  Follow your instinct, if you feel a small amount of sunlight for a short amount of time will benefit your child, go for it.  Gradual exposure is better than hard-hitting them when the summer months come.  I found this great article explaining about getting vitamin d from the sun.

Food glorious food.  We have food that is fortified with vitamin D, but we can’t guarantee the source, the quality and the quantity of vitamin D.  Butter naturally contains high levels of vitamin d, especially pasture/grass feed cows in New Zealand (so go organic NZ butter!).  Eggs are another natural source with good levels a vitamin d, again choose organic, free range or even better biodynamic farmed eggs.  Happy chickens lay better eggs!  Fresh oily fish, not farmed (once again avoiding grain fed fish) provide a good source of vitamin d.  Organ meats contain great levels of vitamin D, and kids love pate (truly they do) and here is a great recipe from Bubbayumyum.

Some other food sources of vitamin D

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Supplements.  A good quality, trusted supplement can go a long way in ensuring your children really get a good dose of vitamin D.  You can start as early as birth, even if breast-feeding.  Although breast milk does supply some vitamin D, depending on your stores, often this is not enough.  You can get your blood level of vitamin D tested by your GP, be mindful this is at a cost.  Visit your local health store for a good quality vitamin D supplement, and ask for specific dosing for your child.  Remember to get some for yourself too.  I do recommend Bioceuticals Vitamin D3 drops Forte.

Photos curtesy of google images, permission not granted from artists as unable to find them