IMMUNE BOOSTING VEGETABLE, LENTIL & CHICKPEA SOUP

May 10, 2021

This tasty soup is the perfect remedy if you’re feeling rundown, feel like you’re coming down with a cold or flu or basically as sick as a dog! It’s crammed packed with prebiotic fibre, which your healthy gut bacteria will love and your immune system will thank you. Enjoy!

Serves a small army!

p.s. go organic as much as possible for the maximum nutrient fix!

 

INGREDIENTS:

Olive oil – 1 Tbs

Garlic, 4 cloves – crushed

Ginger, 5cm fresh root – finely grated

Tumeric, 5cm fresh root (if available) – grated (gloves recommended!) or 2 tsp turmeric powder

Cumin, ground – 2 tsp

Coriander, ground – 1 tsp

Bay leaves, 2

1 brown onion – chopped

1 leek – thinly sliced

3 sticks Celery – chopped

3 Carrots – diced

1 Parsnip – diced

1 Turnip – diced

1 Swede – diced

1 Sweet potato – diced

2 potatoes – diced

Tuscan kale, 1 bunch – washed and finely chopped

Puy lentils ½ cup – rinsed

Black lentils ½ cup – rinsed

Red lentils ½ cup – rinsed

Chickpeas, 400g tin BPA free – rinsed

Chicken bone broth – 1 Lt

Vegetable stock – 1Lt

METHOD:

  • Heat the olive oil in a large heavy based pot. Sauté the onion, leek, and celery until slightly softened. Then add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, cumin and coriander, fry off for a minute.
  • Add all of the other vegetables, except the kale (that comes later), and give it all a good sauté to mix through the flavour of the spices.
  • Add the bone broth and vegetable stock, stir to combine.
  • Then add the lentils, chickpeas and bay leaves.
  • Allow to come to a gentle boil, then reduce to a simmer for 1 hour.
  • Add the chopped kale and allow to cook for another ½ an hour.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Creating a robust Immune System

April 27, 2021

Surprisingly, the gut is the key to our immune system, in fact almost 70% of our immune system is housed in the gut. Within your gut, the resident bacteria (including other microscopic organisms), is known as the gut microbiome. It directly interacts with your immune cells and affects your overall immune response against infection.

A functioning healthy gut microbiome is rich in diverse beneficial bacteria, enabling a robust immune response to fight infection. However, a compromised microbiome can hinder your immune system leading to infection.

Unfortunately, many things can reduce your levels of good bacteria such as poor diet, lack of exercise, and even stress! Another common example is antibiotics, which is often what you are prescribed when infection keeps getting the better of you. Repeat courses of antibiotics causes loss of beneficial bacteria every time you get sick, making you more susceptible to future infections.

If this pattern sounds familiar to you, it’s time to get your microbiome assessed and address the health of your gut with a gut health program.

How to cruise through the year with less stress!

April 22, 2021

Yes please! Think adrenals. Our adrenal glands are the powerhouse that help us cope, or not, with stress. This is why it is essential to prioritise adrenal health to ensure we can effectively duck and weave all the curve balls that life throws us. And, let’s face it, curve balls are a daily event!

Our adrenal glands are situated above the kidneys and produce a hormone called cortisol in response to stress and anxiety. You may have heard of the “fight or flight” response, well this is what it’s all about. If our adrenals are pumping out loads of cortisol due to high stress stimulus we start feeling anxious. If this is sustained over a long period of time we experience adrenal fatigue, at this point our adrenals struggle to produce cortisol and we end up feeling exhausted all the time.

Healthy adrenals naturally produce more cortisol in the morning, giving us that get and go that we need to start the day. As the day progresses, this cortisol level gradually decreases until bedtime, when the levels are low enough for us to have a good nights sleep. Then it starts all over again. This fluctuating pattern is normal and is part of the natural daily cycle.

When we experience long periods of high level stress our poor adrenals don’t get the restorative break they require to keep functioning effectively. This results in poor quality sleep, insomnia, anxiety, low energy or, in the later stages of adrenal fatigue, exhaustion. Ever had the feeling your dragging yourself around or can’t get out of bed in the morning? This is your adrenals crying out for help.

Here are my 5 top tips to keep your adrenals in ship shape condition so you can hit the ground running in 2018:

  1. Good sleep – make sure you’re in bed by 10pm. Adrenals require optimum sleep time to recoup spent cortisol from the busy day.
  2. Exercise regularly, but not excessively.
  3. Regular relaxation and breathing exercises. Massage, meditation and gentle yoga are excellent ways to switch off.
  4. Share enjoyable time with friends and family, remember to laugh.
  5. Identify what is preventing you from moving forward and enjoying life.

Nutritional recommendations to nourish your adrenals:

  • 5-6 serves of vegetables per day.
  • Eat good quality protein, especially for lunch and breakfast.
  • Use quality cold-pressed oils e.g. olive, coconut, walnut, almond, & flaxseed.
  • Avoid acidic foods such as hydrogenated fats, refined carbohydrates & fruit juices.
  • Avoid energy robbers such as caffeine & alcohol.
  • Drink filtered water – 8 to 10 glasses per day.
  • Supplement with B group vitamins, magnesium, vitamin C, zinc, essential fatty acids e.g. fish oil, flaxseed oil, nuts & seeds.

The most effective way to support the adrenals after long periods of stress, especially helpful when we feel exhausted and overwhelmed, are herbal adaptogenic tonics. This group of herbs literally assist us to adapt to stressors, as we can’t take them away; that’s just life. We have to work on how we respond to stress. Adaptogen herbs such as Rhodiola, Withania and Licorice are my favourites for improving our ability to cope with stress.

You can have your levels of adrenal hormones tested to find out exactly how your adrenals are coping. This is especially useful in situations where stress is impacting on your health. Common symptoms of low cortisol levels are fatigue, depression, insomnia, infertility, allergies, chemical sensitivities, menopause, PMS, sugar or salt cravings…to name a few. For an Adrenal Hormone Profile you need a Functional Pathology referral from a naturopath, such as me. Too easy!

If you feel you need to top up your fuel tank in preparation for the year ahead or have been suffering the effects of long term or acute stress, a herbal tonic and getting your adrenal hormone levels checked are key.  Happy adrenals equals happy life!!!

Katie is available for appointments on:

TUESDAY & WEDNESDAY for telehealth & phone consultations

THURSDAYS for face to face consultations at ELK & ME

Head to Book Now to make an appoinment

The perfect grain free Granola

April 12, 2021

This protein packed power breakfast will give you all the energy you’ll need to hit the ground running (and it’s delicious!). The benefits of a high protein breakfast is that blood sugar levels are maintained at a healthy level for much longer than a carbohydrate based breakfast eg cereal or toast. This means you have much more available energy and feel more satiated for longer. A carb breakfast will quickly leave you feeling tired and hungry which is a dangerous recipe for choosing more “quick fix” foods (usually more carbs).

Another bonus of this awesomely delicious granola is that packed full of essential fatty acids. These healthy fats are excellent for improving healthy cholesterol (lowering bad LDL cholesterol), improves brain function, supports healthy skin and hair, to name just a few.

This makes a bucket load which I store in the fridge (to keep the healthy oils in the nuts and seeds fresh) in a glass jar. It lasts over a week so I know I’ve got brekky sorted (one less thing to think about, yay). Feel free to halve the quantities or omit or add any ingredients, totally up to your personal taste.
50g coconut chips
50g pumpkin seeds
50g sunflower seeds
50g cacao nibs
100g hazelnuts
100g macadamia nuts
100g walnuts
100g pecans
100g Brazil nuts
Pinch of salt flakes
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1/3 cup apple juice concentrate (available in health food aisle in the supermarket)
I don’t bother chopping anything, just bang it all together in a large baking tray. Get your (clean) hands in there and toss it all through thoroughly. Then just pop it in a moderate oven for just 5 or so minutes, you don’t want to toast the nuts and seeds otherwise you lose all those lovely essential fatty acids. It’s really just to warm it through so it all gets coated with delicious spices and apple juice concentrate. Viola! Breakfast is ready! I serve it with coconut yoghurt and fresh seasonal fruit.
Enjoy!
Katie is available at Natural Therapeutics on Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Thursdays.  View Katie’s profile here to find out more about what she offers and how she can assist you!  For Katie’s Naturopathy availability and bookings, simply go to our bookings page or phone reception on 9381 0300.

The MetaBiome™ Microbiome Sampling Kit has arrived at Natural Therapeutics!

November 21, 2019

Exciting news – you can now have your microbiome analysed and interpreted at Natural Therapeutics!

Naturopath Katie Forster is offering expert microbiome analysis using the newly released Metabiome™ Microbiome Sampling kit, which is a comprehensive test for assessing the composition of your microbiome.

The kit utilises the latest microbiome assessment technology, providing a complete picture of the bacteria within the gut and their functional potential.

The test involves a simple, non-invasive sampling performed at home, and conveniently posted in the supplied reply paid envelope for assessment.

Katie will then be notified when your results are ready, and from there organise an appointment with you. At that appointment she will present you with an expert interpretation of your results, and provide treatment advice specifically tailored to improve the health of your unique microbiome.

To enquire about how to order your testing kit, contact our reception team on (03) 9381 0300 or via info@naturaltherapeutics.com.au today!