This month on the blog it has been all about inflammation. As you will have learned in ‘Top Signs of Inflammation’ many key signs of inflammation may not present in the most obvious ways and the most effective means for overcoming symptoms of inflammation may not be so obvious either. Healing really begins with supporting the gut. Spend your time and money there and notice how your signs and markers for inflammation begin to change for the better. That’s exactly what one of our clients did recently and her story highlights how inextricably linked gut health and inflammation is.
Finding The Natural Nutritionist
In the months leading up to her wedding Molly was at her wits end with low energy, stress, anxiety and was covered head to toe with an angry eczema breakout. As your skin is the largest organ in your body it often speaks volumes for the level of underlying inflammation and amount of stress your body is under. She came to The Natural Nutritionist looking for a resolution and support in preparing for her wedding. We wanted to share her journey because it perfectly demonstrates how the power of real food and new habit formation can have a profound impact on treating the manifestation of inflammation.
What were the keys to her success?
99% of brides would agree that despite the excitement, preparing for your wedding day is stressful. There are plenty of sleepless nights, tight deadlines and finer details to manage. Sustained and prolonged stress will lead to elevated cortisol levels which will only compound any existing levels of inflammation. While the wedding wasn’t something we could remove, what we did do was manage the wedding induced stress by prioritising sleep and introducing a mindfulness practice.
Removing inflammatory foods
While Molly’s diet already contained beautiful whole foods with anti-inflammatory properties such as turmeric, green leafy vegetables and blueberries, we needed to refine her meal planning. The perfect example of how, in some circumstances, even a good diet requires modification to support the individual. We prioritised gluten free meal options, introduced dairy milk alternatives such as unsweetened almond and coconut milk and reduced the intake of carbohydrates at times where they weren’t required to support her training. We also packed each meal with even more vegetables than she was already consuming and introduced anti-inflammatory fats (including olive oil, coconut oil and fish) with each meal.
Introducing probiotics in the whole food form
With roughly three kilograms of bacteria living in your gut it’s crucial to nurture those that work in your favour to regulate inflammation. We did this by introducing probiotics in whole foods form from Kultured Wellness, including coconut yoghurt and kefir. Aside from providing a therapeutic dose of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium (strains fundamental to a thriving immune system) they make for a beautiful addition to most non-savory meals including our Antioxidant Smoothie. We further supported her gut with the use of collagen powder. Should you be open to it you could also include bone broth, both provide crucial support for the integrity of your gut lining.
With a wedding just around the corner Molly was exercising intensely to support her ‘wedding bod’. While high intensity interval training (HIIT) will do wonders for fat burning, if it’s not balanced with the inclusion of lower intensity aerobic activity or restorative practices such as yoga it can have a negative impact on cortisol levels and inflammation. So we designed a balanced movement plan and prioritised post exercise recovery strategies that would help to manage exercise induced cortisol levels.
Getting 7.5 hours of sleep per night
In Molly’s case sleep was not a concern, but it is a factor that often needs addressing. Your body requires sleep to produce hormones and to recover, so give it ample opportunity to do so by allowing for at least 7.5 hours of sleep per night.
What did Molly have to say about these changes?
“I was five months out from my wedding date, and I thought I needed to do something (now) to get myself ready. I knew it was going to take time and commitment. Stressed to the max as any bride-to-be is, I had anxiety and on top of that I was covered face to toe in angry and inflamed eczema.
Elly, you were so lovely and supportive! From our first skype call up until our last appointment you really guided me in the right direction.
My skin is now looking and feeling better than ever and I feel on top of my physical and mental health”.
These pictures of Molly say it all. It is possible to look and feel your best on your big day. If you’re inspired by Molly’s story let us guide you on a personalised plan to burn fat, reduce inflammation and achieve glowing skin.
Please book your complimentary 15 minute consultation here (under ‘Consultations: Skype’ or ‘Consultations: Face-to-Face’).
We look forward to working with you.