Vitamin Gummies

The kids are coming home with runny, snotty noses! Coughs and colds are on the increase.  Every other child at the park looks infected with some kind of dire disease and you want to protect your kids.

Best place to start is with a healthy gut.  Maintaining excellent gut health is the foundation to a strong immune system, and scientists are showing the link in their research daily.  Here is a great explanation on gut health, easy to understand!

I make these wonderful vitamin jellies to help maintain good gut health and boost vitamins essential for supporting the immune system, vitamin C, zinc.  Many of our children and so deficient in zinc, and it is an important all rounder for every cell in our body to function.

IMG_8494.JPG

Here is the recipe I love, Thanks to Well Nourished

Ingredients
1 cup water
2cm piece ginger root, peeled and roughly sliced
1cm piece fresh turmeric root peeled and roughly sliced
1-4 tablespoon raw honey* or rice malt syrup (depending upon the level of sweetness you like)
1 cup coconut water, kombucha or water kefir
Juice two small or one large lemon
1 teaspoon Camu powder (optional)
2-3 tablespoons Great Lakes gelatin (red one)

(I personally add some zinc, from a supplements, wither powder or liquid form)

Method

  1. Place the water, ginger and turmeric root into a small pot and bring to the boil, reducing to a simmer for approx. 5 minutes.
  2. Take off the heat off, mix in the honey or rice malt syrup and stir to dissolve.
  3. Allow to cool for 5 minutes or so, remove the solids and stir in the coconut water, kombucha or water kefir, lemon and optional Camu powder. Taste to check that you are happy with the flavour (sour/sweet balance)
  4. Now sprinkle the gelatin over the liquid, stirring after each tablespoon. For a traditional jelly set use 2 tablespoons, for a firmer, more gummy-lolly-like consistency, add 3 tablespoons.
  5. If the gelatin doesn’t completely dissolve, you can pop your pot back on the heat for only 1 minute (only heat to luke warm), stirring well.
  6. Pour into a lined slice tray or moulds, and set in the fridge.

*Note about honey – only raw, unheated and unprocessed honey has medicinal properties.

Variations

Don’t like ginger or want to use powdered?
Leave it out or use ½ teaspoon of the ground ginger powder.

No fresh turmeric?
Sub with ¼ teaspoon of turmeric powder.

Low-fructose
Choose rice malt syrup as your sweetener.

Store
Store in the fridge for a few days and can also be frozen. Pack from frozen into the lunchbox (they hold up well in an insulated bag against an ice brick).

 

My family LOVES these! they are gobbled up so quickly

Thanks To Well Nourished for the recipe and the Featured photo

 

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

IMG_7515.JPG

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

IMG_7881.JPG

 

 

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?

IMG_7598.JPG

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!

IMG_6351.JPG

 

 

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”.

D8B6B12B-165C-47C7-BEAE-B825F8F30D1E.JPG

 

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

inspirational parent: Clair Ingleton

It has certainly been a while since we have an inspirational parent up on the blog!

Let me introduce my friend Clair Ingleton. static1.squarespace-1.jpg

Clair is a naturopath in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs, and when I trained as a nutritionist, Clair was training as a naturopath. Clair has a keen interest in children’s health, and has some great recipe ideas on her website. I love Clair’s gentle approach to health, her use of herbs and her passion to help children thrive.

 

How many children do you have?

2

 

What is your food philosophy for your children?

Definitely a whole foods diet.  Being a naturopath my kids rarely get to eat processed food and sugar. I cook most things from scratch and the kids and I are always trying to create new yummy treats from fruits and vegetables with a few natural sweeteners. I’m lucky enough to have a Thermomix which I use to mill my own flours and nut butters as well as using it to hide vegetables in just about everything I make!

 

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

I want then to be as healthy and happy as they can. I feel really strongly in educating kids from a young age about what’s is healthy and what is not. I also don’t want them to have to have pain or suffer from ill health, so for me, prevention is the best option.

Oh and behaviour! I know from my own kids when they have too much sugar they are definitely more defiant and energetic. I see this all too often in other children who may be causing disruptions in class or just making their parents life difficult.

What tips have you got for travelling families? 

Be prepared! I always pack vege sticks, and cherry tomatoes for the beginning. They keep quite well depending on the climate. I always make sure I have nuts in my bag for hungry moments.  Then at our destination I head to the supermarket or healthfood store to replenish supplies.  When at a restaurant with limited choices, I’ll often order “off menu”, that is I ask them for something I want like grilled fish and vegetables, or a simple salad with whatever protein they have.

What are your 3 top snacks?

-Chia pot – chia seeds, fruit & coconut yoghurt

-Celery and nut butter

-Nuts, seeds & piece of fruit

-Baby cucumber, cherry tomato and sugar snap peas.

Oops that’s 4… My kids are always wanting snacks!

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

By eating well and ensuring we all get enough sleep. I’m hopeless when I’m tired and the kids act up, then everyone is miserable. I also try to walk most places so that I am getting exercise without having to think about it. I try to remember to look after myself first, so that I can then have enough energy and patience to make sure I am looking after everyone else’s needs to my best ability.

What brings balance to your family?

We are kinda old fashioned. We don’t watch a lot of TV, we play games, read books and try to do lots of things together as a family. We try not to be too busy.  So many kids have activities every single day after school and then the parents have all their things too, so there’s not enough time to prepare healthy food and enjoy each other’s company.  I guess we balance by trying not to be too busy, but doing just enough of the activities we like to keep us all happy.

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

Getting back to nature.  All of us love getting out of the city and exploring in the bush.  Feeling the earth beneath our feet and seeing, smelling and hearing all the amazing creations that mother nature offers.

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

Not really!  It’s a bit of a soppy one, but once you have a baby you know exactly what this is about:

“Before I met you, I never knew what it was like to be able to look at someone and smile for no reason”

(I smile just thinking about my girls )

 

Here is a recipe from Clair’s Blog

HIDDEN VEGE-BANANA-BLUEBERRY MUFFINS

Most weekends we bake. I enjoy creating recipes and we all enjoy eating the outcome (usually!).  Like most mums, I’m always trying to find ways to get that extra serving of vegetable into my kids.  I’m fairly lucky that both my girls like most vegetable and are usually happy to eat them, but still, I like to sneak them in wherever possible.  Here’s a muffin that the kids will never suspect has a serving of cauliflower in it.

Banana Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients:
110g cauliflower
2 very ripe bananas (150g peeled)
2 large eggs
30g coconut oil (plus extra for greasing muffin liners)
10g (2 tsp) maple syrup (add more if banana aren’t that ripe)
5g (1 tsp) vanilla essence
90g buckwheat flour
25g tapioca flour
5g (1 tsp) bicarb soda
5g (1 tsp) creme tartar
48 blueberries (fresh or frozen)

Preheat oven to 180degrees Celsius. Grease 12 muffin liners and place in muffin try.
Place cauliflower in food processor and blend well.  Add banana and blend again.  Add all wet ingredients except blueberries and blend until well combined.  Pour into large mixing bowl and then sift in all dry ingredients.  Gently mix until just combined. Pour into greased muffin cups. Place 4 blueberries on top of each muffin and bake for approx. 17-18 minutes at 180.

static1.squarespace.jpg

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!

logo-main

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!)

 photo (5)

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

inspirational parent: maria shaflender

health through real food stamp

I have a passion for children’s health.  I really get that fire in my belly feeling when I meet like minded health professionals…we simply have the best conversations!  One such colleague is the incredible Maria Shaflender, a fellow nutritionist, and Sydney’s answer to better family health.  Maria is the owner of True Foods Nutrition.  As well as running a successful clinic, Maria is passionate about spreading good health through her wonderful workshops.  Based in Bondi, you can come along to a workshop and learn about bone broths, pro-biotic foods, and make some super delicious healthy snacks.  Such a clever, busy lady, Maria is also the mum of two awesome children.  I met Maria while volunteering for the Mindd Foundation, inspiring me with her knowledge, her passion and empathy.  What a mum!

facebook image

How old are your children?

I have 2 kids: a boy 7y.o and a girl 5y.o

What is your food philosophy for your children?

“Health through real food”- that’s my motto and food philosophy at home. Wholefoods every day, nothing made in a factory with fake ingredients, nothing my grandparents wouldn’t recognise.

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

The difference in their health! Their immune systems, digestive systems, concentration, growth and overall health have VASTLY improved on a wholefoods ancestral/Paleo style diet.

What tips have you got for travelling families?

Pack your snacks and food and take on the plane where possible. I usually pack: boiled eggs, vegies sticks, whole avocados with a plastic knife, beef and kangaroo jerkey and homemade muesli bars/slices. If you can’t bring your own, keep it clean with wholefoods by ordering: eggs with sides like mushrooms/tomatoes/spinach (most cafes manage thisJ), vegies and fruit or good quality wraps.

What are your 3 top snacks?

Kangaroo jerky, nutty bliss balls (both home- made), fruit and vegie sticksballs_600p

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

Making sure I get enough sleep- I don’t function well on less than 8 hours. If I’m in a good mood, everyone is happy!

What brings balance to your family?

Prioritising the important things: good food and cooking, time together. Involving kids in food preparation and growing herbs and vegies allows them to develop a deep appreciation of real food.

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

Go to the beach and make berry muffins! (gluten/grain/dairy freeJ)

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

“Yesterday is gone, tomorrow is not here yet, focus on today”. No idea who said it, but it reminds me to stay mindful.

You can find Maria over on her facebook page, or find one of her workshops on her website  snacks

Here is a yummy Fritatta Recipe from her wonderful website!

Ingredients:

-2 carrots, diced and steamed for about 15 mins to soften
-3 small zucchini, diced
-1 small bunch of kale, finely diced
-3 slices of turkey bacon, diced (from Sam the Butcher on Bondi rd) or use pasture raised bacon if you eat pork
-1 brown onion, finely sliced
-5 organic free range eggs
-2 tbsp. of butter
-1/2 cup milk (I use raw Cleopatra’s milk)
-1/2 cup grated cheese (I use raw Gruyere or Nimbin natural blocks)
-sea salt

 

How to:

-In a tart dish: place diced zucchini and kale. On a frying pan sauté onions and bacon in butter until crispy. Place bacon and onions on top of zucchini and kale in the tart dish. Sprinkle this layer with salt.
-Place steamed carrots on top in the next layer. Place grated cheese on top.
-In a bowl beat eggs and milk with fork. Sprinkle a bit of salt into the egg mixture.
-Carefully pour the egg mixture over the frittata so that the egg liquid almost comes to the inside edge of the dish.
-Bake in 200◦C oven for 35-45 mins, until the egg mixture is fully set and the top is crispy and golden.

inspirational parent: nicky wood

nicky 2

Through my very first inspirational parent, I have encounter a wonderful mum who lives in Queensland.  Nicky Wood is a naturopath and creator of Super Kids Food.  Through a remarkable health journey with her own daughter, Phoebe, Nicky developed super kids food to increase her daughter’s nutritional intake, especially at particularly difficult times in their lives

The product is fantastic, its full of super foods, and a multiple probiotic strains to help with good gut health and ultimately great all over health.  Super Kids Food is packed with high quality ingredients, chosen for their purity.  The key to the product being successful, is that it is sourced from REAL food, and so easy to give to ‘fussy eaters’.  I’ve tried it, it’s yum!  So easy to pop into a smoothie, sprinkle over dinner, add to bliss balls…the possibilities to amping up your child’s nutrient requirements is endless.

kidssuperfood

Lets check out what makes Nicky tick…

Inspirational Parent Questionnaire:

How old is your child?

My daughter is 10 about to turn 11 in May (mother’s day this year!)

What is your food philosophy for your child?

Gluten free, organic, treats allowed but only if a healthy meal is consumed or is in balance with rest of health. Organic dairy milk was introduced from the age of 5 onwards and she has had no adverse reactions.

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

Apart from my naturopathic training, my daughter was born with a cleft lip and palate and started off with feeding challenges from the moment she was born.   On the day of her birth she had an bedside appointment with the speech pathologist! Since then she has had numerous surgeries and orthodontic intervention so her immune health and recovery during these was a high focus of mine for her. She is also very active these days so I want to ensure she has plenty of fuel for all that energy!

What tips have you got for travelling families?

Don’t leave the probiotics or electrolyte formula at home! It is a given that you will eat different foods and taste different quality of water and the probiotic protection can’t be undervalued in these situations. If a bug does pass through the ‘gate’ and gastro kicks in, electrolytes are vitally important. I also suggest travel with a first aid kit that includes homeopathic remedies for gastro, headaches, ear infections, fever, anxiety and grumpiness (overwhelm). This is a must include when we travel and has saved us many times a trip to an unknown doctor or pharmacy.

What are your 3 top snacks?

Super Food balls, homemade iceblocks, smashed avocado/coriander/red onion/cherry tomato/lime and crackers

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

Insist on quiet down time for me alone. Even if it is just for half an hour. That is often all I need to reset the button and go again.

What brings balance to your family?

Time in each health quadrant – good food, regular exercise, rest and something that feeds our creative/soulful spirit (sometimes that is as simple as talking through a difficult situation in completion).

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

My daughter and I both surf together. I’m very much a learner – she is so much better than me!

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

Live life as if everything is rigged in your favour!

nicky

Thank you Nicky for being inventive and inspiring

Head to her website to check out Super Kids Food

http://superkidsfood.com.au/

Here is a great recipe from the website too

Super Kids Food  ®    Super Protein Balls

 Ingredients

 1 jar of ABC nut butter (can also use almond, brazil nut or cashew butter or tahini)

1 tablespoon of maple syrup or rice syrup or 1/2 teaspoon of Stevia (if sweetening is required)

1 tablespoon of carob or raw cacao powder mixed with water into a liquid paste

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1/3 cup desiccated coconut

2 teaspoons of chia or sesame seeds (optional)

2 teaspoons of Super Kids Foods  ®

1/2 cup dried figs, medjool dates, cranberries or goji berries if preferred

*For extra crunch you can pop roasted buckwheat groats, cacao nibs or chopped pumpkin seeds into the mix

Preparations

Drain off oil from nut butter and retain 2 teaspoons.  Add back to nut butter and mix all ingredients (except coconut) together and scoop a teaspoon of mixture.  Roll into small balls and roll in coconut.  Refrigerate then eat as a healthy morning or afternoon tea bite or pre training snack.

inspirational parent: charlotte carr

bubba

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.

bubba5

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

bubba6

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!)

wanderlust

Unplug from the ordinary.  Adventure awaits.

It was time for the Wanderlust Festival, a celebration of mindful living.

This year, Sydney hosted the festival on Cockatoo Island,  a world heritage site in Sydney Harbour.  After a picturesque, sunrise yoga class under the harbour bridge with  Balance.Life.Nutrition, Amanda and I set off on the short ferry ride from Circular Quay, amidst other keen yogi’s and festival goers.

IMG_3483

We were greeted onto the island by the friendly folk from the Wake Up Project, who gave us their nifty kindness cards and directed us up the hill to where the hub of the festival was.  We walked up enjoying a cup of chai from Egg of the Universe, and ooohing over the sprawl of tents housing those lucky enough to have sleep overs (next year we fully intend to do this!)

After picking up our wrist bands and collecting our awesome goodie bag (thank you Trilogy, Goodness Me Box and Women’s Health Magazine, we LOVED it, gratitude to Imogen at Passion PR!)  we sat down to check out what was what and what was where.  The buzz in front of us was amping up and soon we realised we had joined the Morning Gloryville Sydney-WAKE UP AND SHAKE!! Pretty ladies were grooving with glitter galore and flowers in their hair, the DJ was pumping out the tunes and the odd guy about was really getting jiggy with it.  Amanda & I jumped up and joined in the early morning rave, and found some ribbon to make us look the part.

AliKaukas-2877

Morning Raving, thanks Ali Kaukus for the gorgeous photo

IMG_3498IMG_3491

Amanda and I join the fun

After that we sashayed into the Trilogy Shop, and won ourselves a few little prizes!  We would have loved to have signed up for the workshop to make your own moisturiser, but we had some serious yogi action to attend.

Into ‘The Nook’ we went, really unsure of what was about to happen in our Sing Hallelujah yoga class.  Amanda and I decided to step outside of our comfort zone and attend some classes that we wouldn’t usually go for…and a ‘guided improvisational journey into soulful self-expression’ sounded just the ticket.  The divine Suzanne Sterling was our teacher, a dedicated musician who has been teaching transformational workshops for over 20years.  Suzanne was inviting, warm and very down to earth, I fell in love instantly!  We were there to rock our true selves, to let our voice be heard and connect our soul to spirit.  I can pretty confidently say, this was achieved.  Amazing class, amazing humans present, amazing vibe, amazing amazing HALLELUJAH!

IMG_3507 IMG_3501IMG_3537IMG_3538

Photos courtesay of the talented Ali Kaukus

Our next scheduled class was only half an hour away, our legs were shaking and our tummies were rumbling!  It was definitely food time!  Every good nutritionist loves a good feast, so we were on the hunt for something delicious.  We had a quick squiz around, and although there were some awesome treats on the go…it was once again to Egg of the Universe to pick up a couple of salads and some slow cooked lamb.  Truly delicious, our portions were rather small for 2 ravenous girls and we felt there wasnt much else to choose from (next time camping we can take our own food to satisfy our tummies).  We missed our next class…a choice we made (my legs were too wobbly, I don’t think my arms could have taken another downward facing dog!).  We enjoyed a wander through the mindful market stalls and checked out the action in d’Om (hair braiding, bead making, sign printing, and Lululemon galore…and in the middle a mass of rainbow ribbons framing the resident DJ).

It wasn’t long before our other duties called…Amanda to a wedding and me home to my family…and we set sail once again over Sydney Harbour home.   We thoroughly enjoyed the festival.  Time was precious, so we didn’t get to do many of the wonderful things on offer…more dance parties, ‘winederlust’, paddle yoga, massage, dubarray, and the Wanderlust Spectacular….but there is always next year to book a full weekend to explore more, camp, mingle, bend, sing, eat, pray, love….

 IMG_3487

Thank you Goodness Me Box

 IMG_3530

The amazing stalls, enjoying a chat with the gorgeous ladies from Synthesis Organics

IMG_3494

Morning Gloryville Shakeup

 AliKaukas-3092

So I’m not in this class, how much fun are they having! Photo by Eli Kaukus

Check out the schedule at Wanderlust Sydney 2015, lots of cool classes and speakers on offer…looking forward to 2016 and I will take my family so we can all enjoy the goodness and wanderment of the festival.

the sunny vitamin

IMG_6562

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

sun

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

vitamin_D

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