fbpx

Tag Archives: BRISBANE NUTRITIONIST

Categories GENERAL HEALTH, MENTAL HEALTH

The 28 Day ‘Forget the number campaign’

“I’m working so hard BUT… I’m hardly losing any weight.”

STOP. Did we just take the words out of your mouth? These are the words we hear over and over again. Here’s a little secret. It doesn’t matter and it shouldn’t matter. We are soooo conditioned to measure our progress based on our weight but….. it’s just a number! The problem with focusing on the scales is you quickly become frustrated and disillusioned, then you give up, and then you’re right back at the start looking for a miracle plan once again. In case you hadn’t noticed, we stand for ‘balance’ and long term, sustainable, consistent habit changes. So for February, we’ve got the perfect solution for YOU to ensure you MAINTAIN the healthy changes you have made and start to cement those habits long term… we’re launching a ‘28 day forget the numbers campaign’ and you can follow along with us from home, wherever you are in the world! The ultimate goal of the challenge is for you to reach the end of the month and realize that there are literally hundreds of far bigger reasons to choose a healthier lifestyle than simply the number on the scales. We believe a BIGGER reason will help with long term change. We also know that the numbers on the scale will move slowly if you are embarking on a sustainable health program, and we want you to be ok with this. Forget the 4, 6, or 8 weeks ‘smash yourself’ programs that promise the inches or kgs will fall off. We want sustainable change so you can live a happier life and eventually reach and maintain a healthy weight range. Here’s how you join in on the challenge:

 

  1. Hide your scales. And if you don’t trust yourself just to throw them in a cupboard, get a family member to hide them for you so you literally will not be able to fold and pull them out to weigh yourself at any point in February.
  2. Do NOT weigh yourself at all during the month of February.
  3. Continue on your current healthier lifestyle; the one you promised you would work on in January. If you want more structure or guidance around living a healthier life then check out our online course Back 2 Basics. You could EASILY follow the Back 2 Basics protocol in conjunction with this challenge for February and beyond!
  4. Follow along on social media with us for daily tips and updates and actively ponder what we post. 
  5. Delete any social media accounts that promote unrealistic weight-loss OR that make you feel insufficient in any way. In a similar way, be mindful of who you spend time with over the next month (and beyond). Ensure they are people who lift you up and not pull you down. 
  6. Share this with a friend so you have an accountability buddy (optional).

 

We’d love to hear what you think of our 28 days ‘forget the number challenge’ and especially would love to hear from you at the end! We’ll be here with you so feel free to engage on social media or reach out if you need a consultation. 

 

All the best for a GREAT month sans the scales. 

Categories GENERAL HEALTH, Uncategorized

Let’s redefine ‘normal’

This could possibly be the most important blog we’ve written here at The Balanced Nutritionist. 

 

It’s a conversation that the entire world needs to hear.

 

It’s about how we define ‘normal’ these days. And you know we love to keep things positive so we are sorry if this comes across quite ‘firm’ but its critically important. 

 

What do we mean by ‘normal?’ 

 

Well, what do we define as ‘normal’ when it comes to:

  • The way we feel each day in terms of our overall vitality and wellbeing
  • What we think is ‘normal’ food to feed to our physical bodies
  • What we think is ‘normal’ in terms of how we move our bodies, what movement we are capable of, and how much movement we should be doing
  • What we think is ‘normal’ in terms of how we speak to and treat ourselves. 
  •  What we think is ‘normal’ in terms of the pace at which we live and the degree of ‘presence’ that we actually experience. 

 

What is ‘Normal…’ these days? 

 

You see…. We think it’s a little bit alarming what ‘normal’ is becoming these days because it is in direct conflict with a lifetime of health and happiness. Let’s consider all of the above aspects and what the majority of society seems to consider is ‘normal’ in relation to each one:

  • Many, many people don’t feel vital, energetic, or well most days. Instead, they feel tired, sluggish, bloated, heavy, and disconnected from their own bodies.
  • Many people now just ‘accept’ that ‘food’ comes from packets purchased deep inside the aisles of a supermarket. Or often from a drive-thru. The future of kitchens could possibly be… a microwave. Only! And whilst we believe in balance and the mindful enjoyment of occasional treats…. Chips, chocolate bars, and junk food generally do not have a place in anyone’s diet on a daily basis… in particular, these foods do not belong in the lunchboxes of our little ones – they have always been and should remain ‘occasional treats’ amongst a mostly wholefood intake.  
  • Many people take out gym memberships for a few months here and there… maybe train for an event with some friends for a little while… but then go months in between doing very little. In actual fact, moving is normal. Humans are just like other animals. We should be moving regularly. We should be able to move with ease. We should be moving daily – even if it’s not strenuous. Take the stairs, go out and get some fresh air at lunchtime, stretch your body, and engage in deliberate exercise you enjoy. Moving is normal. Aches, pains, creaks, huffing, and puffing… is not
  • It’s not normal to talk to ourselves in a nasty way… call ourselves fat, or lazy or other mean, horrible names. It should be normal to treat yourself well and learn to love your own company. If you want others to love hanging out with you, then you should love hanging out with you!
  • Finally, it’s not normal to go through life at a million miles per hour. Constantly stressed, constantly haggled… wearing busy like a badge and never being fully present. This leads to burnout. And who wants to live a life… that they can’t even participate in? If this point in particular resonates with you, we recommend you check out the book ‘meditation and mindfulness’ by Andy Puddicome. 

 

We encourage you to Consider Normal as:

Sluggish, tired, flat Energetic, vital, well
Food from packages   Food from nature; wholefoods
Exercising because you have to Move because you were born too and it’s a gift
Self hate, self doubt Loving yourself and being kind to you.
Living on autopilot at 1000 miles/hr Living in the present.

 

But What does this have to do with Food? 

 

So you might be wondering why we brought up this topic when some of it is not entirely about food? Because if you know us even a little, you’ll know that we believe health is the whole package. We don’t just focus on food… we also want you to consider your lifestyle, your mindset, your stress levels, your relationship with self, your relationship with food… these are all tied in together. To influence your health and happiness. Intermingled… you wouldn’t have one without the other. When you nourish your body with good food… you will want to nourish your body with positive thoughts, speak nicely to yourself, enjoy physical challenges. And you will want to live in the present, saying no to people and occasions that don’t serve you, rest when you need to, be present in your wonderful life and be productive without being ridiculously busy. 

 

Think about how you define normal.. Or what you accept as normal. Could you raise the bar? Start a ripple effect and create a new normal. 

Categories GENERAL HEALTH, Uncategorized

What is ‘Mindful Enjoyment’ and why are we passionate about it?

Here at the Balanced Nutritionist and throughout our online Back 2 Basics course, we encourage you to consider an 85/15 approach to health. I.e. 85% of the time we do believe in eating really good, wholesome healthy foods, moving a reasonable amount, getting enough sleep etc. But the other 15% allows for some relaxation. We believe you should be able to enjoy an ice cream in the movies from time to time, have a pizza with some friends or sit in front of Netflix and share a bowl of popcorn…. Guilt-free too. This is where ‘mindful enjoyment’ comes in.   

Mindful enjoyment means that you are able to wholeheartedly enjoy the ‘15%’ which is when you don’t eat the ideal foods for you and you include more occasional foods.

‘Enjoying’ means:

NOT feeling ‘guilty’ because you are doing something indulgent

NOT feeling anxious or stressed whilst OR after you do enjoy something indulgent

Consciously choosing to indulge in something outside of your typical foods because you can and because you feel like it. 

NOT ‘overdoing’ things when you are eating more indulgent foods. I.e. you should always choose consciously, eat these foods slowly so you can savour them and stop before they make you feel ill.

Question…. What’s the point of scoffing a whole tub of ice cream only to finish and realise you’ve eaten it so fast you didn’t enjoy it AND you now feel ill? Wouldn’t you be better off enjoying a small bowl of ice cream slowly, tasting each mouthful, and then stopping before it makes you feel sick? 

If the following things are happening then you are NOT experiencing mindful enjoyment and there may be some stress and anxiety to resolve when it comes to food… 

Eating sugary or junky food because you are really stressed out (i.e. instead of choosing to do this consciously it’s a knee-jerk reaction to stress and overwhelm).

Eating occasional foods extremely fast and in big quantities to the point where you feel quite ill… and may not even remember making the decision to start eating them in the first place!

Feeling extremely guilty for having even the smallest amount of indulgent food.

Feeling guilty after indulging and turning to vigorous exercise, or very strict restrictions in the days that follow…. E.g. starving yourself, or eating nothing but vegetables, or deciding you need to rapidly detox because you were ‘so bad.’ (which you weren’t of course… you were human!).  

Food should not cause stress or anxiety like this. Here are some tips that may help you begin to experience more mindful enjoyment and less guilt. Please be mindful that we are not mental health professionals and you may need to consult with a counselor or psychologist if you continue to feel very overwhelmed when it comes to food.

10 Tips to Help you achieve Mindful Enjoyment

  1. Always remember that what we do occasionally does not matter. It’s what we do most of the time that counts. 
  2. Always remember that food is a celebration. Indulgent food can bring family and friends together and be part of important milestones in life to be enjoyed. Not feared. 
  3. Always remember that you will not undo everything because of 1 or 2 bad meals!
  4. Try to take control of negative thoughts in your head if you are experiencing negative self-talk during indulgences. Turn any of these internal conversations into positive thoughts / positive affirmations instead. Use phrases that work for you. 
  5. If you turn to food when you are stressed, try to actively find other ways to manage stress. This may include listening to meditations, going outside and taking 5 big deep breaths, hugging your dog, journaling, or going for a walk around the block. It may even mean bigger changes like…. Speaking to your boss about your workload OR even checking in and making sure that areas of your life LIKE your work ARE truly fulfilling?
  6. When eating indulgent foods (actually all foods in general), chew slowly, enjoy the texture and the flavours of the food, put your knife and fork down between mouthfuls, and don’t rush. Stop when you have had enough… not when you feel sick or are completely pogged. 
  7. Always remember that occasional foods will always be there. You don’t have to eat the entire pizza in 1 hit…. Thinking you will never eat pizza again! Pizza will be there next time if you feel like it 🙂 
  8. Always drink plenty of water. 
  9. Try not to think of food as ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ 
  10. If you are experiencing cravings often for sugary or salty foods then take a look at your overall diet. Are you enjoying some carbohydrates each day? Some fresh fruits? Are you having a bit of protein with all of your meals, particularly breakfast? Is there plenty of healthy fats in there? Are you hydrated? Are you exercising more than you used to and perhaps need more food? (refer to lesson 7 in this case). If you need more help fine-tuning things then book in to see us. 

We spend an entire lesson going through the concept of Mindful enjoyment in our Back 2 Basics online course… maybe we’re not available to new clients right now, or maybe you’re not ready to see someone face to face? That’s ok… the Back 2 Basics online course will guide you towards a healthy, happy lifestyle over the next few months from the comfort and safety of your own home. 

Our relationship with food is just as important as the food we eat. Work on mindful enjoyment… if you can’t mindfully enjoy treats you will forever be in a cycle of punishment and guilt. Be happy. Be healthy. And embrace mindful enjoyment.

Katie and Nicole are still on maternity leave, but we prepared these resources in advance and we hope you find them helpful. For updates on return dates etc. you can check the maternity updates page here.

While we are waiting for the official date as to when Katie will be back for consults, feel free to call or email us so we can put you up on the waitlist to be contacted when Katie opens up her schedule. Our current list is constantly growing and we would highly suggest you put your name on the list so we can prioritize you. You can call our office number (07) 3063 2710 or you can email Michelle at appointments@thebalancednutritionist.com.au (she is available between 8 am-4 pm Brisbane time). You can definitely leave a voicemail and she will get back to you as soon as she is available.

Have a lovely day folks!- Katie 🙂

Categories GENERAL HEALTH

How to Maintain a Healthy Weight

We spend a lot of time talking about dieting. And reaching a healthy weight. Or reaching health in general. But the fact is, that’s only the start. Once you reach it, you need to maintain it. And unfortunately, many people do not. Hence the dieting industry can be quite a lucrative business as people go from one diet to the next as they lose and then find the weight they once lost.

Here at the Balanced Nutritionist, we don’t want to help you find health and happiness for a short while…. we would like you to leave us knowing you have the skills to hold onto these gifts for life! Want to know the secret to maintain a healthy weight? It is all about habits and mindset. We are so passionate about this topic that we covered it off in a recent podcast on The Nourished Wrap; you can listen in here.
Anyhow, this little blog is a synopsis of the podcast, covering 10 key tips for how to maintain a healthy weight. 
If you are at the start of a health journey then begin with the end in mind and consider these tips from the very beginning. If you’ve reached your goal, then these tips will help you maintain your new-found health and happiness.

10 Key Tips to help you Maintain a Healthy Weight (and maintain health overall)

1. Do not think about this as the ‘end’ of your health journey and certainly do not think about when you can ‘go back to how things were before.‘ Health is a lifelong journey. To be healthy is a serious decision you make every minute of every day. You choose to live in line with the value of health. There is no ‘going back to how things were’ because those habits did not serve you well remember? You need to decide that the changes you have made are going to stay with you (mostly) for life.
2. Perfection is not possible. Consistency is what matters. You may have read tip 1 and thought ‘oh gee I have to be this perfect forever!?” No. Life is about balance. Its what you do MOST of the time. NOT the occasional treats and moments you fall off the wagon. You WILL fall off the wagon. Just like a puppy dog walking along a footpath – there will be exciting smells that drag them into the bushes. For you, there will be birthdays and weddings and family and friends and days or even weeks of stress when TV dinners and takeaways are more frequent. That’s ok. Move on. Forgive yourself. Pick yourself back up. And get back on the wagon when you can.
3. Your health is your responsibility. It is easy to say that you do not have time. Our work is making exercise impossible. Or it’s too cold or too dark or healthy is too expensive. Ultimately…. we are all responsible for making it happen. If it’s important enough… you will find a way. Some of the busiest, most successful people in the world are the healthiest and fittest as well.. and that takes time. We all have the same amount of time in the day. Live according to your values and if health and happiness are one of those – then live in line with that.
4. Self-monitor and self-correct. If you want to remain healthy and happy for life, you need to self-monitor. Check-in with you – are you still feeling good? Well? Are your clothes getting a bit tight? Are you going to weigh yourself once a month to check that you are looking after yourself? Or do you just go by feel? Do you have a loved one, a partner, a friend, an exercise buddy… that you can talk to and unload and admit when you’ve let things slide again, but that you are prepared to get back into things. My husband and I keep each other accountable to little things like our exercise, not going overboard with our love for a glass of wine and eating well…. because its important to both of us. It doesn’t mean we don’t have days off or nights when we may enjoy a couple of glasses… but I know I can tell him if I feel like I am overdoing it and vice versa. And then we can check-in and make sure we course correct. If you don’t know someone you can have this kind of relationship with then maybe seeing your nutritionist or health professional for regular check-in visits ongoing is worth it?
5. Consider changing your environment. If you have a whole bunch of friends who love eating greasy food often, drinking lots and don’t support you to make better decisions most of the time…. you may want to spend a little less time with them. You also want to make sure that the family is on board as well and that everyone else in the household isn’t eating take away in front of the TV every night! Surround yourself with others that have the same healthy values as you. Consider new activities to do with your friends if needed; like day hikes, or coffee in the park in the sunshine instead of less toxic activities. Or consider a gym, walking group, or similar where others are committed to their health and enjoying it as well!
6. It’s not just about the numbers. Health is a feeling. It’s not a number on the scales. Use weight if you like to monitor… but don’t ‘give up’ because that number isn’t the one you want. Consider how good you FEEL. THAT is SO MUCH MORE special than ‘your number.’
7. Get Support if needed ALWAYS. Sort of like point 4 and point 5….. no harm in investing in ongoing support. Like… you may want to have a follow-up appointment with your nutritionist or health professional every 3-6 months to make sure you are on track? Or perhaps you want to see someone more regularly as a trainer every week. Why not invest a little more often? The cost of letting everything go and then starting again from the beginning is far higher! Financially, emotionally, physically, and mentally!
8. Be organised with your time, it’s worth it! Sorry. But healthy is not always convenient. You need to have a food plan. Shop for fresh food fairly often. Spend a bit of time preparing it. Spend time moving. Monitor your work/life balance. Sleep well. etc. BUT... how much time will it cost you IF you do NOT do these things? If you were sick, sluggish, tired, exhausted all the time? A LOT. That is a FACT. So it is worth it. It is soooo worth it!
9. Accept how far you have come and be proud and grateful. Does not matter if you’ve only lost 5kg and you need to lose 60kg. It matters not where you are on the journey… just that you are on the journey! If you just keep focusing on the end and choose only to be proud and happy then… you will be disappointed when you get there. Celebrate all of the little changes you make. It’s not a race. It’s a lifelong journey.
10. Inspire others. Now that you are healthy and happy, you don’t need to ‘lecture’ others but set an example for your children and other little ones in your life, your neighbours, the people at your work who may be feeling a bit rotten. If you can be healthy and happy so can they. And a society full of happy and healthy adults and children would be a really positive, productive, and wonderful one wouldn’t it?

Don’t forget to listen to our podcast on this one too!

Cheers to lifelong health and happiness!
Katie King
Categories GENERAL HEALTH

Tips for staying healthy whilst working from home

On the weekend, we provided comments for an article in the Courier-Mail, on this very topic ‘staying healthy whilst working from home’. Since your working environment may have changed dramatically recently, here are some tips for staying healthy despite the change to routine:

  1. If you’re used to packing a healthy lunch each day continue to do this every morning before you actually start work. If you don’t prepare something healthy in advance, you’ll go to the fridge mindlessly at lunchtime and be more inclined to choose something less healthy… or even Uber eats instead!
  2. Keep a large glass of water at your desk and continually sip throughout the day. Topping up gives you a chance to stretch your legs, gets the blood pumping and gives you a moment to refocus. If you don’t stay hydrated you may mistake hunger for thirst. Plus you’ll feel lethargic and might even get a headache.
  3. If you’re in an exercise pattern already, keep it the same! Don’t promise yourself you will ‘just do it later’ because chances are you won’t. Slot it in as normal. And if it’s not part of your routine, then with all the extra time you have minus commuting… Why not make it a habit from now?
  4. Stock on up fresh veggies to use as a base for salads or lunchtime wraps and fruit for snacking. There are amply supplies of fresh products at your local fruit and veg markets. It’s the supermarkets that have been cleaned out. Support the little guys. And stocking up on pasta and confectionery has no benefits right now or ever for that matter. 
  5. As the weather cools, consider popping something rich in nutrients into a slow cooker first thing in the morning. It will be ready in time for lunch. vegetable-rich dishes with either pulses or some form of meat protein are a great, healthy and filling option. Keep an eye on our Facebook page as we will be sharing heaps of recipe ideas over the coming weeks. 
  6. Actually, eat proper meals. If you get into the habit of skipping lunch altogether, you will be hungry and you’ll go for quick snack foods high in sugar continuously for fast pick me ups and you’ll only come crashing down again. 

From personal experience (keeping it real as always) the hardest part about working from home is avoiding mindless eating as a result of procrastination. To avoid this, it’s best to make sure you don’t have temptations lying around – like chocolates, chips, and biscuits. Apps that boost productivity are really handy as well. For example, the Pomodoro app is a free download on your computer that encourages you to focus for 25 minutes at a time and then allows you a 5-minute break. Psychologically it works! It’s like having a robot boss on your computer keeping you accountable to your work and stopping you from mindlessly walking to the kitchen!

We hope that helps. If it’s business as usual for you (but from home instead) and you’d like to seize this opportunity to work on your general health, reach out and book an appointment here – we are still operating by Skype / in clinic 6 days a week.

Categories GENERAL HEALTH

Updates regarding appointments during the Coronavirus period- as of March 20, 2020

Hi everyone,

We hope that you and your families are safe and well during this unprecedented time that we are all facing right now.
We wanted to assure you that we are here to help support you as best as we can. This is our first mass communication in relation to Coronavirus; essentially because there has been so much information from everywhere at all angles, I (Katie) felt it better to hold off and communicate more personally to each of you as your appointments arose. However, the time has come to put out some assurances and options for you moving forward regarding any upcoming appointments you may have with me or Nicole here at The Balanced Nutritionist:
  • Firstly, Nicole will only be seeing her clients via Skype, Zoom or phone effective from now until the foreseeable future. If you are a client of Nicole’s, but you’d prefer to see someone face to face, I can take over your care for now. Otherwise, Nicole can still care for you just as effectively by any of these methods and you won’t even have to leave the comfort of your lounge room.
  • I will continue to provide consults in clinic OR by Skype / Zoom/phone depending on your preference. There is mass communication already circulating in relation to best practice when it comes to face to face interactions; I won’t add to this as I trust that we have had this drilled into us from all angles.
  • Roughly 40% of our current client base is from other states including Victoria, NSW, WA and even NZ. So please rest assured; we are well set up and experienced at providing our consulting services via Skype / Zoom or phone and assure you that the effectiveness of treatment will not be compromised.
  • Should you wish to move your upcoming appointment to Skype / Zoom or phone, you can either phone ((07) 3063 2710) or email us (hit reply) now OR inform Michelle when she contacts you for confirmation. Confirmations will be done 4 days in advance from this point forward to allow for scheduling changes etc.
  • We are able to post orders for supplements via express postal services should you prefer an online appointment or simply need to restock and don’t want to call into the clinic.
  • On a final note, if you are experiencing financial hardship due to a sudden change in employment or similar, BUT you really require our services please reach out so we can see what we can offer you during these times.
A few general words from a professional, nutritional perspective…..
Over the last few weeks, I’ve witnessed some fantastic ideas relating to health and natural immunity support, from fellow colleagues being communicated via social media etc. Sometimes, this sort of advice gets shut down very quickly and dismissed as quackery. None of these colleagues (or us here for that matter) are laying claim to being able to cure viruses or anything outrageous like that. I believe the message is simply… if you have the capacity to continue working on your overall health, then you should continue to do so during this time. By strengthening our overall wellbeing, we will help our own immune systems, reducing our risk of contracting viruses in the first place (and colds – it is the season for it). Furthermore, if faced with an unfortunate diagnosis, if we are as ‘generally healthy’ as can be, it’s likely we will suffer less severely. So for this reason, we do encourage you to continue eating well, staying well hydrated (water that is) and moving where you can. This will also contribute to better mental health during these periods of increased self-isolation. Overall, we offer the following tips:
  • Local fruit and vegetable stores and even IGAs seem to be really well stocked with beautiful fresh produce as do local butchers. I can personally vouch for Lorenti’s fruit market, Greenslopes IGA, and England and Allsop Butcher Coorparoo. The supermarkets are being wiped clean so support these little guys; less crowded and better quality, fresh food. This is the food that will support you right now; not the pasta and confectionery being wiped out of the bigger stores.
  • Please drink your 2L (minimum) of pure water daily. Please. Even though it is getting cooler, you still need it!
  • Fresh air helps. Even if it’s just from your own backyard. I’ve upped the length of my dog walks to well over an hour a day to enjoy the sunshine, capture some vitamin D and keep moving generally. If gyms are forced to close you can continue with bodyweight strength exercises and even yoga/pilates via computer apps from home.
  • You can generally support your immune system naturally with nutrients like vitamin C, zinc and even some herbal products. Please ask for individual advice at your next consult. We will be suggesting immune support to all our clients at the end of consultations from this point forward; as a professional duty of care. Note that some herbs are contraindicated in certain health conditions and immune support for pregnancy is particularly specialized so do ask. No, these products won’t cure Coronavirus – but they could reduce your susceptibility to catching things in the first place.
Finally, I buy toilet paper in bulk yearly from Who Gives a Crap, an awesome organization if you don’t know them – check them out! Anyhow, I have about 60 rolls in the clinic so should you find yourself low on supplies, just ask and I’ll give you a roll or 2:).
That’s all we have for now folks. Things are changing rapidly though, therefore some of this information may change by the time you read this, but we shall do our best to keep you informed.
Take care of yourself and others.
Katie
Categories GENERAL HEALTH

2020’s Magic Beverage…. Nutritionist Endorsed!

So you’re wondering about all of those little bottles that stare back at you in the supermarket claiming to cure all ailments from dodgy stomachs, to stubborn cellulite, to acne-prone skin?

Fear not. We are here to hold your hand through the noise and tell you the absolute MUST drink beverage for 2020. We love it SO MUCH that we even have this beverage available in the clinic for you when you book your appointment.

This beverage will:

  • help you to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight
  • help you stay regular ‘down there’
  • help to prevent you from overeating
  • help with inflammation of the joints and ligaments by providing lubrication
  • flush out body waste (a trendy way of saying this is ‘detoxing’ your body)
  • help make your skin GLOW
  • help to boost your energy
  • help you to get a good night’s sleep

Geez. You must be thinking right now, I bet if it does all of those things… it must be a bit exy right?
Well actually….. its completely FREE! It comes straight from the tap, and we are NOT getting enough of it! You can see Lexi the Lab demonstrating just how delicious and irresistible WATER truly is!

Ahhhh. Sorry about that. Just another truth buster team, its what we do best here at The Balanced Nutritionist.
Seriously BEFORE you turn to ANY expensive super beverages you need to absolutely ensure that you are drinking at least 2L of pure water each and every single day. MORE if you are male and broad because quite simply you have even more cells than an average person to hydrate.

For more truth busters, check out some of the blogs on our website. And if you’re lost in the hype of 2020 fads then we’re just a click of a button away.

Ph: (07) 3063 2710 for queries / appointments.

 

Categories GENERAL HEALTH

Is salt good for me?

We’ve been told for decades that we should reduce our salt intake, but what if salt is actually good for you?

 

Salt (or sodium chloride, as it’s scientifically called) is made up of about 40% sodium and 60% chloride. The words ‘salt’ and ‘sodium’ are often used interchangeably, as salt is the highest dietary source of sodium, however, sodium is also found naturally in foods, such as seafood, spinach, celery and beetroot.

 

Sodium is an essential nutrient that is required for the normal functioning of our body:

  • Our bodies use salt to balance the amount of fluid in our tissues and blood.
  • Salt facilitates nerve and muscle function and helps to maintain healthy blood pressure.
  • The chloride in salt is used to produce hydrochloric acid, which helps to break down food in our stomach and helps absorb nutrients.
  • Adequate amounts of salt are necessary for thyroid and adrenal function.
  • Salt also plays an important role in food preservation.

 

In fact, it’s impossible to live a life without any salt – it’s essential to life!

 

Our bodies constantly lose salt through bodily functions, like sweating, so it must be replaced. But it’s all about balance – consuming too much sodium (particularly refined salt) may lead to oedema (swelling), increased blood pressure, and other conditions.

 

And salt isn’t just salt – your standard white table salt is considerably different from the salts you find in nature.

 

Table salt is a refined form of natural salt that has been processed; heated to extreme temperatures which change its structure and destroys many beneficial compounds; bleached white; treated with chemicals to remove all trace minerals. The problem is that these trace minerals are essential for our body and our health.

 

Unfortunately, it’s this refined salt that is used in most packaged and processed foods, like breads, processed meats, soups and sauces, and salty snacks.

 

Refined table salt is not a health ‘food’ and should be limited in your diet.

 

So, what’s the healthiest salt?

Choose an unrefined salt that is found in nature. Unrefined natural salts contain sodium and chloride as well as other essential minerals that act as important electrolytes in the body.

 

Pink Himalayan salt comes from ancient seabeds in the Himalayan mountains. Himalayan salt is rich in minerals, in fact, it contains all 84 essential trace elements required by your body. Its pink colour comes from the rich iron content.

 

Celtic Sea salt is an unprocessed, natural salt from the coastal regions in France near the Celtic Sea. Unlike regular, refined table salt, Celtic Sea salt retains the beneficial trace minerals and nutrients, like potassium and magnesium, needed by the human body.

 

Murray River salt flakes are produced from using the mineralised brines from the ancient saline aquifers of the Murray Darling Basin. The brine is pumped into shallow lake beds and dried out in the sun, leaving layers of salt to be harvested. As well as sodium, Murray River salt contains other important minerals (magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium and iodine).

 

Similarly, unrefined sea salt is produced by pumping seawater into ponds and allowing the water to evaporate leaving salt to crystallize on the floor of the pond. It is then scooped up, washed in seawater, dried and packaged.

 

Australian Pink Lake salt comes from a lake in Western Victoria. The lake is fed by natural salt aquifers and dries out each summer to reveal a bed of salmon coloured pink salt. This natural salt is rich in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sulphur, iron, manganese, zinc and copper.

 

How much salt should you have?

The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommends a suggested dietary target of 2,000mg of sodium (which is equivalent to about 5 grams or 1 teaspoon of salt) for adults daily. But it’s easy to get much more than this when you are eating a lot of processed and packaged foods.

 

About 75% of the salt we eat comes from processed foods, rather than from salt added to cooking and foods.

 

On the other hand, eating a mostly real, whole food diet – consisting of lots of fresh vegetables and fruit, quality protein, healthy fats, whole grains, legumes, raw nuts and seeds, and water – will naturally help to keep your daily salt intake within a healthy range.

 

Listen to your body… When you are eating a mostly real food diet you can let your taste buds guide your salt intake. Salt your food as you cook, keep the sea salt grinder on the table and enjoy fermented foods (such as pickles and sauerkraut).

 

The take-home message… Salt is an essential nutrient. Avoid refined salt, limit your intake processed/packaged foods (which contain high levels of refined salt), and use an unrefined, natural salt to taste.

 

And remember that you may need more salt on days when you are sweating a lot and/or drinking lots of water.

Written by Nicole Bence. You can book with Nicole here.

*Note: If you have hypertension or kidney disease, please consult your health care practitioner before you make any changes to your consumption of salt.

Categories WEIGHT LOSS

Finding a Healthy Weight Range

Here at The Balanced Nutritionist, we see a variety of clients with many different health conditions. These range from conditions characterized by pain and inflammation, digestive disorders, mental health conditions, fatigue, and of course, reaching a healthy weight. Whilst many of our clients will come in and see us with a multitude of symptoms that they would like to see improve, the one that most place the most weight on (pardon the pun)… is their actual WEIGHT. In fact, even when there is a multitude of other symptoms that are having a very negative effect on quality of life… it still comes back to that one number on the scales….

Our Goal

Nicole and I, as the nutritionists here at The Balanced Nutritionist have spoken about the issue of ‘weight’ and what we, as a society, think it means, at length. Working in weight loss is hard…. Its like walking on a tightrope. We want to make it clear that our goal at The Balanced Nutritionist is to help people be as healthy and as happy as they can possibly be by choosing great, healthy whole foods that are good for their body most of the time. However, because some of what we do comes down to weight AND because it’s a big issue to many of our clients, we want to make it clear that: 

  1. We do not want to create or contribute to any fear that may surround food. 
  2. We do not want people to think that perfection, when it comes to food is the only path moving forward because this is certainly not what we advocate
  3. And we certainly don’t want people to have an unhealthy relationship with their bodies. 

For us, the weight conversation can be a tricky one. What we really want to help people with is ‘reaching a healthy weight range’, and this is a term that we often use during clinical consultations. We are NOT about having that thigh gap… or that six pack. In fact, its common for us to ask clients to remove influences that promote this thinking from their lives… as it can be unhelpful. We are however aware that weight and health are intricately linked. You can not ignore one and acknowledge the other. 

Sometimes clients sit across from us and tell us that they need to lose weight or that they feel uncomfortable with their bodies. From a professional perspective, we know that in all honesty, their weight isn’t a problem at all. They may already be at a healthy weight range.. But fixated on becoming a particular shape or size, that perhaps they just aren’t meant to be. Sometimes, we focus on a magic number that perhaps just isn’t right for our own bodies. Some of us will naturally be leaner than others and that is ok. Sometimes, reaching the ‘magic number’ might actually cause ill health. Sometimes, it would require such rigid and unreasonable eating / exercise habits that it would be extremely detrimental. So for us, we always come back to the ‘healthy weight range’ and focus our support on helping our clients reach and accept this. It is the place where health will be good… both physical and mental! 

What IS a ‘healthy weight range’

  • It is NOT about being a size eight, with 20% body fat, or having visible abs, a thigh gap or fitting into a little black dress. 
  • It IS a place where you minimize your risk factors for certain metabolic conditions. 
  • It IS where can move freely without pain and exercise without struggling
  • It IS a place where you feel comfortable in your own skin
  • It IS a place that you can maintain by choosing good, healthy wholefoods, eaten consciously with the occasional treat without guilt. 

Our preferred tool to assist clients to achieve a healthy weight is the Metabolic Balance® program.

We really need to change the conversation and make sure that we are striving for a healthy weight range as opposed to the so-called “perfect body” that is sometimes portrayed as ideal. Let me tell you that the so-called “perfect body” that is portrayed at times is FAR from perfect. There is, as we talk about without clients such a thing as being too lean. 

If you reduce your body fat too much:

  • You will compromise your hormonal health
  • You may compromise your aspects like your fertility
  • You may even compromise your muscle mass and your bone density particularly later in life. 
  • And it’s likely mentally, that you won’t be in a good place. 

It is so important to us that our clients have a balanced relationship with food. That eating healthy doesn’t become stressful or mean there is no room for variation or occasional indulgences. 

When the motivation or the mechanism to become healthy becomes too stressful, then the benefits are outweighed by the additional stress that this causes. 

Sometimes people come into our clinic, thinking that we will help them attain the perfect body. Or build the ideal booty. This is NOT what we are about. Having developed quite a reputation as a ‘weight loss clinic’ (even though we have never labelled ourselves as this) we walk a delicate line…. We believe that health is absolutely linked to a healthy weight… but that the concept of a healthy weight needs to be redefined.

Thanks for reading. It’s difficult to express our thoughts clearly on this topic, but we feel it’s critical we communicate our stance on this issue. And its critical everyone knows…. you are so much more than a number of a scale!

Categories Gut Health, Gut Health

All I Want For Christmas Is… A Good Poop!

We just could not resist a Christmas countdown post…. But, seriously… constipation is no laughing matter. And we know for many, a good reliable poop is the stuff of dreams. 

Constipation is the inability to pass stools regularly or empty your bowels completely. Some people who suffer from constipation may pass stools less than three times per week, they may be hard or dry stools, there may be straining, a feeling of incomplete evacuation or complete inability to pass at all.

Pooing at least once per day up to 3 times per day is normal.

You’ll be relieved to know that most cases of constipation can be successfully resolved by eating a diet high in fibre, drinking more fluids and exercising daily.

Here are our top tips for keeping things moving… and achieving a good reliable poop. ⠀

  • Eat a whole food diet with a variety of fresh vegetables, fruit and whole grains. Many people hear this advice, but simply do not know how to put it into practice – this is where we come in. Book your appointment here
  • Increase your fibre intake – add chia or flax seeds, leafy green vegetables, and fruits like pears, kiwi, prunes and apple. (Tip – do this slowly… and pay attention to the next point below).
  • Keep hydrated – drink at least 2 litres of water per day. Minimum. When did we all forget about water? 
  • Exercise daily. Go for a walk. A light jog if you can. These things can help stimulate ‘movement’ down there…. Ask any runner, and one of the benefits they may cite is ‘it also keeps me regular.’ 
  • Go to the toilet as soon as you feel the urge – don’t wait! Psychologically, you will keep telling your brain this over and over and over again until… it will do all of the holding for you! 
  • Use a footstool or ‘squatty potty’ to elevate your feet when on the toilet. Other cultures don’t sit to poop. And to be honest, squatting is an easier position to eliminate from. Squatty potties are much more common these days.
  • Give yourself an abdominal massage. 

Tried all of these things? Embarrassed about it? Still not getting a good reliable poop? LOTS of people have problems down there, Nicole has even shared her story about this very topic. Read it HERE.

Maybe you aren’t sure where to start? Give us a shout at The Balanced Nutritionist so we can gradually help you ease the discomfort through your nutrition and appropriate gut supplementation if necessary.