Healthwise Clinic Natural Health Blog

Archive for the ‘Natural Health’ Category

Obese, fat or just plain overweight?

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010
Fat Chance
Image by didbygraham via Flickr

The word “obesity” may become less in evidence if a new government initiative takes hold.

Ann Milton, who is England’s public health minister stressed she was speaking in a personal capacity, and said: “If I look in the mirror and think I am obese I think I am less worried [than] if I think I am fat.”

She said too many staff working in the NHS were worried about using the word “fat” , but suggested it could help encourage “personal responsibility”.   Use of the word “obese” when “fat” is the everyday word was presumably taken up so as not to stigmatise people who were overweight As obesity (fatness?) threatens a high proportion of the population including children,  a more proactive approach has been considered necessary.

Interestingly Professor Steve Field, of the Royal College of GPs, said he agreed with Ms Milton and already tried to use the term fat as much as he could.

“I think the term obese medicalises the state. It makes it a third person issue. I think we need to sometimes be more brutal and honest.

“You can be popular by saying the things people want to hear and in the NHS we too often do that when we should be spelling things out clearly.”

But Professor Lindsey Davies, president of the UK Faculty of Public Health, which represents public health professionals, warned against using ‘fat’ when dealing with patients.

“People don’t want to be offensive. There is a lot of stigma to being a fat person.”

She said health professionals started using the term obesity to encourage patients to think about the condition in a different way.

“Obesity is something that happens to people rather than something they are. The language you use all depends on the relationship you have with a patient.

“I would probably be more likely to say something like ‘can we talk about your weight’ rather than obesity, but that is a judgement you make on a patient-by-patient basis.”

I know from personal experience it was when the scales tipped a lot in the wrong direction, and the waistband was  just too tight that I got motivated to do something about weight.  It can take a lot of discipline to undo the comfort food / trigger patterns.  I certainly noticed the unbelievable amounts of chocolate available on sale when at the supermarket checkout, or when buying petrol.  After a while though the eating patterns get reestablished, and temptation is easier to resist.

About one in five adults in the UK is obese, a figure that has tripled since 1980.  One of the danger zones is a large waist contributing to an “apple” shape.  If your waist is around 40 inches and you would like to look sleeker and feel better telephone the clinic 01628 668339 and ask for an appointment with Andrew Loosely. He can tell you what to eat for your particular condition (which is much more accurate than simply your body type) as well as help you plan your diet to suit the season.  What you eat in summer is different from the appropriate food during other seasons.  As well as losing weight you get the maximum all-round health benefit.

And the best way to keep the weight off?  Enjoy healthy food, take gentle exercise, avoid stress and have a happy life!

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Male infertility on the increase – helpful practical advice

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Declining levels of male fertility “is as important as global warning” says Professor Niels Skakkebaek, of the University of Copenhagen.

Stop drinking so much alchohol, doing intensive cycle training as well as wearing  tight clothing, and having hot showers or saunas if you want to be a father is the practical advice given in a new guide published this week.

The guide by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority states that up to one in five healthy young men between the ages of 18 and 25 have abnormally low sperm counts.  In addition the sperm produced is of low quality.

We always see couples together at the clinic for fertility issues, and place a high importance on both the physical and emotional aspects of infertility.

An individual diagnosis which identifies the areas of imbalance in the body gets at the deep issues which are solved with acupuncture and herbal remedies.

We always give a wide range of practical advice with diet exercise and a whole of life approach.

Nappy rash treatment – organic balm

Friday, April 9th, 2010

Nappy rash can be a great problem for babies and toddlers who are stuck in nappies (diapers) all day.  The skin is continually exposed to moisture and a red rash can develop.

Many creams can contain products which can be harmful for your baby’s sensitive skin.

Nappy Rash treatment

Healthwise Purple Balm is 100% organic and is certified by the Soil Association, so you can be sure of the quality.  Because it does not have the fillers and chemical products used in high street creams, you may find it a little different to apply.  Yes, it is a little more work but it is the only way we can keep the product natural and chemical-free.  Scrape a little from the jar with the spatula provided, and warm it between your fingers for a few minutes to soften it.  As it is firmer to the touch toddlers are less likely to make a mess with it…which can be a bonus!

See what some mothers have said ..

“fast acting”
Ive been using the purple balm on my 6 month old son and it has been fantastic!
When applied to his nappy rash it cleared up within a couple of days.He also suffers from dry skin and eczema. I applied to balm to his forehead, which was particularly dry, and to his cheeks which were dry and red. The redness dissapeared almost immediately after application, and his skin looked much healthier and moisturised- a much better result than the product I had been using on prescription from my G.P! I did find the balm a little difficult to apply, I agree with what others have said-if it were a little softer it would be easier. All in all though, a brilliant product, it has made a big difference to my sons skin and Im very suprised and pleased with the results!

“purple balm”
We tested the purple balm.Overall i found it a good product.The smell was a little off putting and it was a little hard to apply.
I used the balm on alices sore bottom and it did reduse the redness but because it was difficult to apply i couldnt get the amount on that i think was needed.
The balm is hard to scrape and if it was softer this would help.
I also used the balm on my 5 year olds sore chin.She has a chapped lip and vaseline wasnt doing anything.The purple balm is brilliant for this,really reduced the redness and emily said it wasnt sore either!!so thumbs up for that!!!
Overall a good product that does what it says!!but coiuld be a little softer/creamier

“Quick acting”
The purple balm works brilliantly, so a herby smell is a small price to pay!! It got rid of Jaidyn’s nappy rash quickly and she’s not had any more since. I put it on at each nappy change and even after a rather bad nappy on the school run her bum stays pink and not red raw.
Also no more red chin when we’ve been out. A brilliant balm.

We would love to hear what results you get with the balm for your baby’s skin.  It can be used wherever the skin is red, which can also include cheeks and chins as well as babies bottoms.  More about Purple Balm

Less coffee more lemon..natural spring detox leaves no sour taste

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010
ode to the lemon
Image by jamelah via FlickrDrinking coffee all day long does give you a type of energy, but the trouble is it is the wrong sort.  As you probably know coffee increases your response which may be good in an emergency, but it is not a natural way to live. Ultimately it depletes your energy and your immune system and adversely affects your health.

So many people spend hours on the computer, and it can become a habit to reach for a cup of coffee to punctuate the day.  Coffee will eventually give you a sour taste in your mouth, while what you really need in Spring is a genuine taste of something sour.

Detox during Spring with lemons.

During the spring our bodies are de-toxing naturally, and the perfect way to help them is to provide a taste of something sour like lemon.  The taste of lemons will give added punch and help your body to get rid of excess fat and toxins.  Incredible though it may seem your body loses weight naturally at this time of year.  It makes sense as in the natural world animals need layers of fat to see them through the lean winter months, and when the earth wakes up, leaves start to appear and more food appears, those fat deposits are not needed any more.

Like animals we can benefit from the natural cycle of the seasons.

Changing your diet to include more sour less sweet tastes.

The first action you can take is to replace endless cups of tea and coffee.  To be honest they can become a habit.  Giving up those drinks can sound difficult if you have a stressful life and use the drinks as a pick me up.

The warmth of tea or coffee is important, so what we suggest is that you have a warm comforting drink first thing in the morning.  Boiled water and a slice of lemon will be much more appealing before you eat anything sweet.

It could help to imagine all the excess gunk leaving your body effortlessly helped along with the drink.  During the day you do need to drink water, and we reckon that hot water and lemon could soon become your favourite! Start gradually, and reduce the other drinks and replace with water and lemon.

The other action to take is to reduce the amount of sweetness you eat.  Having started the day well should give you a boost to cut down.  Your body does not need sweetness during Spring, so try fresh greens and food with more vitality which is far far better for you than stodgy junk food.  Over time you will find your taste preferences change and you prefer food which is not clogging up your arteries and metabolism.  Fresh vital food helps to give you energy, and eating lemons in spring help you to lose weight, so it is a double gain!

Simple and powerful. Boost your liver to detox naturally.  Put the kettle on and get started ..and imagine all that gunk effortlessly leaving your body.

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Seaweed to make junk food healthier!

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010
These are seaweed farms. Each rectangle of sea...
Image via Wikipedia

Seaweed as you will know from Andrew Loosely’s last newsletter is a great addition to soups and casseroles.

It is rich in minerals and can help to reduce weight.  Andrew particularly recommended it during March which is the natural time to lose weight.  All good!

I see in the press that seaweed’s weight-losing abilities are now going to be used as an addition in junk food!  The thinking being that nobody can do without their junk food, so the best plan is to make it secretly help you to lose weight.

I suppose this is for two reason

The idea of eating seaweed is weird.  After all you could be at the beach and look down at the seaweed and you would be unlikely to think of having a quick munch!

Seaweed may not be on sale in places where you can buy junk food.  It is mostly in health food shops.

Seaweed in cooking or in junk food?

Seaweed to help you lose weight in junk food

Seaweed is presented in thin sheets and in fact doesn’t look like what we think of as seaweed at all.  It is not universally available in mainstream supermarkets here in the UK.

More information about edible seaweed.

Read more about the team from Newcastle University who conducted the research to put the seaweed into bread and their plans for more seaweed- based junk food products

But the best thing would be to make sure you are on Andrew Loosely’s newsletter so you get health tips for the season delivered to you .. real health nuggets not chicken nuggets!


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World’s fattest woman – a strange ambition

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

A woman in the US apparently wants to be the world’s fattest woman.

It is a strange world where so many are starving, and others are overeating.

There have been many comments on the article, as you would expect.

The reasons for overeating are usually complex and emotional.

Green is the colour of Spring and Anger is the emotion

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

Spring is the favourite season for many of us.  The sun is at last starting to shine, it is getting warmer (even though the winds are still bitter), but we feel excited and energised about the changes and the still warmer weather to come.

Green is the colour of Spring

Green is the colour of Spring

Green is the colour of Spring

As you may know each season is associated with a colour in traditional chinese medicine and it can be no surprise that in Spring the colour is a warm green.  So feast your eyes on green-ness it could be good for your health.

Anger is the emotion of Spring

Each season is also connected with an emotion.  It can be a surprise to discover that the emotion associated with Spring is not peacefulness and calm but Anger and Frustration.  It doesn’t fit with our image of spring as being a pretty time.  Even thinking about anger can seem threatening sometimes.  But anger is a very necessary emotion in order to create change.  In traditional chinese medicine change is welcomed, and essential.  We are not the same all year round.  Our bodies minds and spirits need different things at different times of the year.

Think of spring and you think of spring cleaning, of clearing out, of houses going on the market and home owners moving.  All of these involve frustration with the old, and change.  It is the impetus to anger that makes spring so effective.  In fact we need some anger in order to get up off the sofa at all!

So this spring embrace any frustration you may feel and do something about it.  If you find yourself becoming irritated with others, simply wonder what you could do about your own life.  It could be there is something you would like to have, or to be or to do.  Plan to make the change and very often you discover that what was previously annoying has stopped affecting you, and you are more energised about your own situation.

Spring is the time to get it done.

Increase your immune system today

Sunday, March 7th, 2010

Here’s a recipe from my repertoire for a highly nutritious chicken stock and soup that will boost your immune system and give you lots of energy. Eat it at least 3 times per week, but it can be eaten daily for optimum results.

Chicken stock recipe
This makes a clear stock that you can use as a soup base alone or with other foods.

I recommend using organic products if possible. I leave everything whole so that the stock remains fairly clear.

1 whole chicken
1 large onion
6-8 bay leaves
3 sticks celery
2 leeks
8 shiitake mushrooms
1 tsp sea salt or ideally Himalayan salt
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons Goji berries
Water to cover the chicken completely

Place the chicken in the pot and add all of the ingredients (whole) and then add the water to cover over the chicken.
Turn heat on and slowly heat it up. Do NOT bring it to a boil or simmer at any point during cooking.
It must cook for most of the day 6-8 hours and very slowly. For the first 40 minutes you need to skim off the frothy stuff that comes to the top. Keep doing this every few hours and you’ll be rewarded with a clear beautiful stock. Season with salt and pepper. Do not boil or simmer just let it get very hot.

If you want a better stock start it in the morning and cook it very slowly all day. Then let it cool down overnight and reheat the next day and cook for a few more hours. The longer you cook it the better it tastes but one day is sufficient for getting health results.
Once cooked, take the chicken out carefully so as to not leave anything in the stock. Remove the skin and discard and then take all of the meat off the bone. Let cool down and refrigerate. To finish the stock, strain the vegetables out and either eat or discard them. You now have a very healthy, immune boosting stock. For increased immunity add more Shitake mushrooms and more goji berries and 9 grams of Astragalus (herb), available at Healthwise. This herb is one of the best in the world for improving immunity.
Try the recipe below for a meal idea.

Meal idea:
Once cooked, put the stock in a bowl, add cooked noodles, some of the chicken meat and raw pak choi or other leafy greens (finely chopped) and uncooked finely sliced Shiitake mushrooms and enjoy

Secret chinese medicine tip to lose weight in spring:Lemons

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010
Gabrovo jokes
Image via Wikipedia

Adding lemons to your diet in spring is the secret traditional chinese medicine tip to lose weight.

In Spring your body is detoxing naturally – yes really!  This excellent news means this is the perfect time to lose weight.

Why add lemons to your diet?

Lemons break down mucus build up

Lemons also help to reduce blood fats

which leads to you losing extra weight and being healthier.

However, you don’t need too much of the sour taste in Spring as it will upset the Liver which is the organ associated with Spring.  About half a lemon a day – or posssibly even one whole one – is easily enough.  If you have too much of the sour taste you can damage your tendons and soft tissue.

One of the best ways to get the benefits of lemon is to squeeze the juice of a lemon into boiled and slightly cooled water, and drink.  Go on, try it!

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Protect your skin from the bitter Spring winds with natural skin products

Sunday, February 28th, 2010

The winds in spring are bitterly cold this year.  According to traditional chinese medicine the winds in Spring can cause health problems, and we need to protect ourselves and wrap up warmly.

Our skin is usually left unprotected, however, even if we are wearing coats, scarves and gloves, as well as thick warm boots.

One of the best ways to protect the skin is to use 100% natural skin balms.  At Healthwise Clinic, Andrew Loosely has been so concerned about the quality of the high street skin creams available that he has formulated four natural skin balms to deal with many skin problems.

At this time of year children can often be seen with red, sore-looking cheeks and the perfect way to deal with this is to use Purple Balm which is expecially created to help with all red skin problems.  The wind can be very harmful to children’s skin particularly, and Purple Balm will soothe the skin.

Beauty Balm from Healthwise Clinic

Beauty Balm from Healthwise Clinic

Adult skin which is not red still needs protecting with natural organic products.  Beauty Balm from Healthwise provides a protective layer from the bitter wind, and you can be sure contains no harmful parabens or any of the toxic substances that unfortunately are used to “improve” the touch experience of many skin balms and creams.

Beauty Balm and Purple Balm can be lightly massaged and warmed in between the fingers for a moment to make the application easier if the balm has been left in a cool place.

The other balms in the range solve more pervasive skin problems.  Yellow Balm is formulated to help with the type of eczema where there is weeping skin, and Clarifying Balm is perfect for situations such as Athlete’s foot.

Feedback to the balms is very positive for solving skin problems, and the fact that they are 100% natural, and 90% organic and certified by the Soil Association is also seen as a great benefit.