Finally .... we are heading towards the Spring Equinox, a truly wonderful colour-filled time of year. Unfortunately a rather warm, dry August means the hay fever season has well and truly kicked in on the back of an extended nasty flu season, leaving many of us feeling stressed and worn out. The constant misery in the media of late hasn’t help either. So is now time for us to STOP, BREATHE and take time for ourselves.

While I’m sure you all contribute wonderful things to your individual worlds, they can continue without you from time to time ... it may not be exactly the same but things do continue… so TAKE TIME for YOURSELF and perhaps consider the following suggestions …

  1. Stress: Address the stressors in your life. If emotional stress has played a role, it may be time to talk to someone, a friend or family member. It doesn’t have to be a therapist, although talking to someone impartial does allow for total freedom of expression. We don’t have to solve all our problems (and those of others) on our own. If the impact is being felt on a physical level, perhaps look at your current activities (or lack thereof). How important/ necessary are they?

  2. Lifestyle: It’s easy to push yourself but sometimes taking a pragmatic look at your lifestyle and altering things to allow for ‘free time’ can really help. Even fun stuff can be stressful when it becomes a commitment.

  3. Relaxation Techniques and Exercise: Whether it be yoga, meditation, cooking or more
    physical pursuits such as swimming, cycling or kicking a football. Find out what works to relax you and ‘allow’ time for it every week. Avoid timetabling it!!! If you are a very kinaesthetic/ physical type ... remember moderation. No matter how healthy you think you are going to the gym everyday – the general rule of thumb is one-day on/ one-day off.

A mixed program is always the best solution. Regular, gentle exercise has been shown to be a great stress buster. Just a nice walk in the park WITHOUT the FITBIT!!!!! It doesn’t matter how many steps you walk … just walk and enjoy them. Regular, if possible daily sessions of meditation/ mindfulness are also excellent for calming the mind and reducing anxiety.

  1. Diet: Nutritional deficiencies are just another form of stress, so eat well. If you don’t know where to start on this give me a call.

  2. Avoid Stimulants as much as possible: Alcohol, sugar, caffeine, nicotine, recreational drugs have all got to go or at least try and cut them back... after a while you may be surprised at how little you actually crave them.

  3. Address any other health problems: Chronic allergies, infections are all a source of stress on the body. Don’t kid yourself that it will ‘just go away’. If you have an underlying health condition that needs addressing it is probably time to come in for a chat.

  4. Hydrate: An easy one ... Turn on the tap - filtered preferably.

  5. Learn to say NO: Don’t over commit yourself. Manage your work/life balance.

  6. Learn to be kind to yourself and others. Acknowledge good work and effort. A few well placed ‘Well Done” and Thank you’s often end up being reciprocated. Its good to feel appreciated.

  7. Release the tension before you are over-whelmed by it.

  8. Some recent research on the effectiveness of aromatherapy has shown patchouli and rose scents to be effective in ‘lifting the spirits. Try adding them to a bath along with some Epsom salts to relax muscles.

Post Winter Detox? – if you have tended to eat stodgier meals and have been particularly sedentary during winter then perhaps you may need to make an effort to recover your ‘ZING’.

Some symptoms of built up toxins are:

  1. rashes and lack-lustre dry skin

  2. weight gain, constipation

  3. a feeling of lethargy after eating

  4. drowsiness

  5. sluggishness

  6. muscle pains

  7. fatigue

  8. throbbing headaches.

  9. Obviously the body would prefer to feel ‘better’.

  10. So... give it hand by ……

  11. Increasing your intake of WATER!!!! and choosing colourful, complex carbohydrates ie. more fruit, vegetables and some whole grains (brown rice, lentils and beans) in your diet. They are ‘chock’ full of antioxidants.   Don’t get stuck on one type. Variety is the key!! Look to Low GI alternatives.

  12. Decrease your intake of sugar, junk foods, processed carbohydrates and alcohol, (yep all the fun stuff!).

  13. Include some essential fatty acids: fish, flaxseed, walnuts, avocado, as they help the immune system build the proper antibodies, modulate inflammation and support strong supple skin.

  14. If post winter dry skin is a problem try cutting back the heat and time spent in the shower and increase your intake of Vitamin C: citrus, kiwi fruit and Zinc - red meat, seafood, pumpkin seeds, dark leafy greens. Consider Evening Primrose oil: useful in improving skin quality and reducing dryness. Always opt for a cold pressed, chemical-free option.

Dust off the Nutri Bullet and start juicing…. BUT remember the body is designed to digest best by chewing, so the ‘all liquid’ diet, while easy, is not the best way to go if you wish to maintain a healthy, happy digestive tract. Mix up your juices. Don’t get stuck on one blend or overdo the fruit - too much fructose can be counter productive. Moderation is best! Get yourself a good multivitamin containing antioxidants to support you while you clean out the ‘gunge’ and support skin recovery.

Fill your world with the positive essentials of ‘Spring’ - vibrant colours and scents of nature’s ‘party’ season of renewal! If you would like to experience it in the form of aromatherapy, here is a starting list of Spring enhancing scents: Bergamot, Ylang Ylang, Clary Sage, Fennel, Geranium, Neroli, Orange, Lemon Myrtle and Jasmine.

If you into the real thing - as in gardening - remember Australian Natives are not just pretty they are in fact often the better option if your suffer from seasonal rhinitis.

Some suggestions from a gardening friend, firstly, plant Australian natives as they are less likely to cause an allergic reaction; replace any bark mulch with rock or gravel to reduce toxic mould spores; plan your gardening around rainy, cloudy or windless days as pollen counts are lower and if possible mow when the dew is still present on the lawn. So, avoid plants with strong fragrances or odours and consider planting asthma-friendly plants i.e. those that are insect-pollinated or propagated by cuttings or grafting e.g.

•Herbs – sage, mint, thyme, parsley, marjoram, rosemary.

•Trees – Magnolia, Gingko Biloba, Lillypilly, Cherry.

  1.    Flowers – snapdragon, pansy, begonia, impatiens, petunia, viola, lobelia.

  2.    Climbers – kiwi fruit, passionfruit, Chilean jasmine.

For those of you who live or holiday near rivers and creeks the warmer months often equate with Mosquitoes and as Ross River virus has been on the rise in Western Sydney in recent years,

the following link may be of interest to you: Mosquitoes

Now that you are feeling all ‘fresh and new’ take advantage of the longer daylight hours for gentle exercise, start with a good walk and see where this takes you.

If you would like some more information or advice… you know where to find me.

                                        Enjoy, Keryn.

Clinic days are currently flexible with Friday continuing as the primary day.                                                                                   


Community Announcements:

Relay for Life - Fairfield City. 

Relay For Life is a fun, outdoor overnight fundraising event that brings communities together to celebrate and remember the lives of those who have battled cancer. Teams take turns to walk or run around a track whilst enjoying entertainment, activities and moving ceremonies.

Fairfield City is holding their Relay for Life on: Saturday, November 4th at Prairiewood High School

Prairiewood 9.30am Sat to 10am Sun. Walking to raise money for research and awareness of those that have survived their brush with cancer, while remembering those that are no longer with us. For more information if you wish to become involved/ participate. Contact: Samantha Newman 02 93542078.