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Herbal Medicine

Whole Naturopathy / Herbal Medicine
nutrition for anxiety

Natural medicine for anxiety

To watch this as a video click here Whilst anxiety is part of life, and in some cases it’s even helpful (like when you know your 2-year-old could run onto the road at any moment!). There are many times it can stop you in your tracks and prevent you from normal functioning. Anxiety disorders form the most common mental health disorders in Australia, effecting 14% of us each year, and 25% of us at some stage of life. These disorders range from generalised anxiety which is an everyday uncontrollable worry, to social anxiety, panic disorders, phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Symptoms For some people their anxiety is obvious: they may feel fear, panic, or dread, whilst others sometimes notice digestive symptoms, dizziness, shortness of...

Long Covid

Long Covid

It may come as a surprise, but post-viral syndrome is not a new health issue. If you’ve lived a few decades, you may remember in the 1980’s and 90’s, that chronic fatigue was the term used to describe the long-term exhaustion which was usually caused by the Epstein Barr virus. Studies at the time found that muscle function, attention and memory were severely hampered, although the cause was largely unknown. Similarly, whilst there are a range of long Covid symptoms such as neurological, digestive, cardiovascular and autoimmune disturbances, for most people, fatigue is what has the greatest effect on the ability to function normally. As the term chronic fatigue suggests, the fatigue lasted for months after the initial viral infection. This obviously has an enormous impact on...


Get on top of the flu season

As we head into winter, we find ourselves once again in the cold/flu season, although from what I have seen, it has begun earlier this year. Whilst words like “virus”, “immune”, and “COVID” or “COVID-19” still invoke a stress response in most of us, the truth is that we will likely be more aware of viruses than we used to be for many years to come. Like all viruses, the covid-19 virus mutates over time which prevents the body from recognising the virus and fighting it more effectively. For this reason, some people find themselves being infected a second or third time, and it’s no less severe than the first time. There are also other seasonal viruses that do not test positive to a Covid test. Whether it’s...


Reflux – a sour taste in your mouth

Whilst most people will experience reflux with extreme fullness occasionally, often with overeating (think Christmas day!), some people experience this daily. What’s going on? In healthy digestion, food enters the stomach via the oesophagus through a valve called the lower oesophageal sphincter, which opens only to let food in, then it closes again. Reflux occurs when this sphincter opens at other times and lets food or stomach acid through, often causing a burning pain in the oesophagus or an acid taste in the mouth. Why stomach acid is so important? The acid in your stomach plays a very important role in breaking up foods, killing bacteria (along with other foreign substances like bugs 😊). The stomach is an amazing organ in that the acid can destroy human cells and...


An easier transition into menopause

Traditionally in many cultures menopause was celebrated as freedom from childbearing and a sign of wisdom. Sadly in our culture many women struggle with the loss of youth, it can be good to be reminded to enjoy this stage of life and look for some positives. The average age for menopause is 51, and by definition is 12 months with no period. Perimenopause is the transition stage and usually occurs from age 45 to 55. Changes occur due to changes to main female hormones: oestrogen and progesterone. Oestrogen is the ‘strong’ hormone, it has a role in strengthening bones with calcium, and during perimenopause the levels fluctuate. Progesterone is the ‘calming’ hormone, it relaxes the nervous system, and in perimenopause the levels drop. During the reproductive...


Does your liver need a detox?

Whilst it’s commonly known that excessive drinking causes liver damage, there are many other toxins that are processed through the liver. The human body is exposed to toxins daily from the air we breathe, the water we drink, plastics, chemical cleaning products, cosmetics, medications, recreational drugs, cigarette smoke, and the list goes on. At some point, the liver becomes overloaded, and the detoxification process is impaired. Signs of poor liver detoxification Liver damage Gallbladder disease Fatty liver and high cholesterol Migraines High blood sugar Allergies Poor digestion Nausea Sugar cravings Menstrual irregularities Eczema/dermatitis Stress Fatigue The detoxification process The liver detoxifies though three phases and is the most important organ in metabolism. The first phase is a process of chemical breakdown of the toxins; the second phase prevents...

natural home remedies

Easy DIY remedies this summer

Sunburn, scrapes, bites and stings often go hand in hand with enjoying being out in nature over the summer break. Below are some natural remedies that are supported by research, that you can prepare yourself this summer. Calendula is part of the marigold family of flowers, and the flowering head can be used medicinally both internally and externally. Externally, both current research and traditional use, show it to aid in wound healing for ulcers, burns (including sunburn), incisions, and insect bites, reducing inflammation and healing time. The best way to prepare calendula is to soak the flower heads in an oil - nut oils are best as they are high in vitamin E which also improves skin healing. After a couple of months, strain the oil...


Wired and Tired – from stress to exhaustion

Trying to achieve more than most people? Or maybe you’ve been doing that and have hit a wall? Welcome to the world of adrenal exhaustion, or technically, the Hypothalamus-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) axis dysfunction, adrenal insufficiency, or hypercortisolism. It all starts with stress According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics in 2020-2021, 15% of Australians experienced high levels of psychological distress, and this was higher in women, and younger Australians (16-34 years). This is likely to be higher in Melbourne where the pandemic stress combined with lockdowns meant long periods of reduced social activities and parents trying to juggle work with home-schooling. Our central nervous system has two modes: sympathetic nervous system (SNS) dominance, known as ‘fight or flight’, and parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) dominance, ‘rest and digest’. During life we...

men's health

Men’s Health: puberty and prostate

With Father’s Day this month, it’s a great time to talk about men’s health. We’ll take a look at two conditions: teenage acne and Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). These are both caused (at varying degrees) by male hormone imbalance. Androgens are a group of hormones of which testosterone (the predominant male reproductive hormone) is the most common. Testosterone levels increase for young men in their late teens, and the excess androgens contribute to acne. The sebaceous glands which secrete oil onto the skin, produce androgens, along with other glands, and in excess are converted to a hormone called dihydrotestosterone which promotes acne. Research has found herbs such as Serenoa repens (Saw palmetto) effective in treating hormonal acne, especially when combined with other androgen regulating herbs is....

hay fever allergic rhinitis

Springtime allergies

I do like Spring, it brings the promise of warmer weather. I particularly like wattle, the way it blooms well before the weather has begun to warm, like a promise that winter won’t last forever. But for many of us, springtime has a unique set of problems: hayfever and allergies. Symptoms obviously depend on what allergens your body is sensitive to, and the degree of sensitivity will determine the severity of your symptoms. Those with asthma or eczema in their family often have increased genetic sensitivity. What’s going on? An allergen enters the body and triggers an immune response to defend against the allergen. Mast cells (part of the immune response) release histamine which causes inflammation, usually in the nose, throat or skin. What’s going wrong? In someone without allergies, histamine...