Why you should eat a plant-based diet – that doesn’t mean being a vegetarian

Why you should eat a plant-based diet, but that doesn’t mean being a vegetarian

Plant-based diets are often shown to be good for health. Yet Australians eat a lot of meat and are sometimes reluctant to completely cut meat from their diet. So it’s important to know that eating a plant-based diet doesn’t have to mean becoming a vegetarian.

Plant-based diets are high in vegetables, wholegrain bread and cereals, legumes and whole fruits, yet can still contain small amounts of lean meats and reduced-fat dairy products.

A survey of Australians found most (70%) thought a plant-based diet would prevent disease. But what does the literature say?… + Read More

Vitamin D3 may increase bacterial richness in the upper gastrointestinal tract and reduce opportunistic pathogens, says a new study from Austria.

Vitamin D3 and the human microbiome

Vitamin D3 may increase bacterial richness in the upper gastrointestinal tract and reduce opportunistic pathogens, says a new study from Austria.

Scientists from the Medical University of Graz report that high daily doses of vitamin D3 for five weeks led to significant reductions in bacteria such as Pseudomonas spp. and Escherichia/Shigella spp.

“The marked reduction in Gammaproteobacteria, which include typical opportunistic pathogens and the increase in phylotype richness, supports the beneficial effect of a high-dose vitamin D3 supplementation on the human gut microbiome,” wrote the researchers.

“This might in part explain the effects of a vitamin D-rich diet on IBD or bacterial infections and encourage studying the effects of vitamin D in these patients.”

Study details

The researchers recruited 16 healthy people to participate in their open-label, pilot study.

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Health Check: does caffeine cause dehydration?

For a long time people have been told that caffeine is a diuretic. For some, this translates into advice to avoid or remove caffeinated beverages from the diet of people at risk of dehydration, or during periods of extreme summer heat.

While possibly well meaning, this advice is wrong.

By definition, a diuretic is a product that increases the body’s production of urine. Hence water, or any drink consumed in large volumes, is a diuretic. Importantly, urinating more does not inevitably lead to dehydration (excessive loss of body water).

Drinking simultaneously provides the body with fluid for absorption (avoiding dehydration) and initiates urine production.… + Read More

Health Check: what are coffee naps and can they help you power through the day?

Health Check: what are ‘coffee naps’ and can they help you power through the day?

Coffee naps

Caffeine and napping have something in common. Both make you feel alert and can enhance your performance, whether that’s driving, working or studying. But some people are convinced that drinking a coffee before a nap gives you an extra zap of energy when you wake up.

How could that be? Is there any evidence to back the power of these so-called coffee naps? Or are we better off getting a good night’s sleep?

Feeling sleepy?

If you don’t get enough sleep, you incur what researchers call a sleep debt.

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The great debate – Pros and cons of dairy

Got milk?

One of the most common questions I get, what do you think of dairy? Is it healthy? Do I need it for strong bones? Do you drink milk….

Do I drink milk?

No, I don’t drink milk, I think it should be reserved for growing calves. Here is what I’ve found and I am sure if we keep digging there will be pros and cons for any argument, but what I ask is you to read the China Study. I do eat fermented dairy, yoghurt on occasion and cheese, they would make up less than 5% of my diet I don’t feel these are an issue.… + Read More

Zinc – Can’t Live Without It, Are You Getting Enough?

Zinc Essential For Health

You may currently take zinc when you have a cold or flu. However, did you know that your cells need it on a daily basis? The adult body contains approximately 2.0 to 3.0 g, mostly stored inside your cells. Zinc has far-reaching actions which affect the health of your whole body.

Are Your Levels Low?

If you experience any of the following symptoms, your zinc levels may be low:
•    Recurrent colds, flus and/or infections;
•    Poor appetite, reduced sense of taste and/or smell;
•    Sluggish digestion;
•    Slow growth and development;
•    Slow healing, acne and other skin conditions;
•    Infertility;
•    Sugar cravings; and/or
•    Stress, anxiety, and depression.

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Vaccination and Australians’ attitudes are more complex than a simple ‘pro’ or ‘anti’ label

Reading the headlines, it would be easy to believe childhood vaccination rates are declining in Australia, due to an increasing trend towards distrust of vaccines among parents.

In fact, vaccination rates in Australia have been high and stable, hovering between 91% and 93% since 2003. Only 7% of children living in Australia are not fully vaccinated. This includes children who are not vaccinated at all and those who are partially vaccinated.

Among the 7% of children who are not or not fully vaccinated across Australia, more than half have been prevented from accessing vaccination by some practical barrier. Perhaps the family can’t afford to register or repair the car this month, or has recently arrived from overseas and needs to start a complex schedule of catch-ups.… + Read More

When does normal stress manifest into something more, like anxiety?

When does normal stress manifest into something more, like anxiety?

Anxiety is more than just feeling stressed or worried. While stress and anxious feelings are a common response to a situation where we feel under pressure, they usually pass once the stressful situation has passed, or ‘stressor’ is removed.

Anxiety is when these anxious feelings don’t go away – when they’re ongoing and happen without any particular reason or cause. It’s a serious condition that makes it hard to cope with daily life. Everyone feels anxious from time to time, but for someone experiencing anxiety, these feelings aren’t easily controlled.

In Australia, it’s estimated that 45 per cent of people will experience a mental health condition in their lifetime.… + Read More

Pregnancy: We’ve all heard about postnatal depression, but what about antenatal depression?

We all know and hear a lot about postnatal depression, but what about depression and anxiety during pregnancy?

Over the past two decades, most research on mothers’ mental health has focused on the time after childbirth. Only recently has attention turned to the issue of maternal mental health during pregnancy.

Our study involving 1500 first-time mothers suggests around one in ten mothers have clinically significant depressive symptoms in the first three months of pregnancy, and a similar proportion have severe anxiety symptoms.

Other studies measuring symptoms at later stages of pregnancy, or over a number of time points, indicate even higher proportions of women have clinically significant depressive and/or anxiety symptoms during pregnancy.… + Read More

Health Check: What is endometriosis?

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Health Check: are painful periods normal?

Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue similar to the lining the endometrium (womb), grows outside of the womb. It can grow on the ovaries, bowel, and in some rare cases has even been found outside of the pelvis such as the lungs. The hormones that trigger a period cause bleeding at these sites of implanted endometrial tissue, and this causes pain.

Endometriosis usually causes period pain to start earlier and last longer than what is commonly experienced with menstruation. Sometimes the pain doesn’t go away when the period ends. Women with endometriosis can describe pain at the the time of ovulation, or pain with sex.

+ Read More
Sanation

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Nathan, Coogee

Lindsay provided some great practical dietary and nutritional tips that I was able to put into practice easily because they realistically fit my lifestyle.

Nate, Maroubra

Lindsay is an incredibly talented naturopath and caring individual! I couldn't recommend her highly enough!

Kate, Bondi