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.

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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

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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

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!

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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

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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.

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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!

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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.