Should we eat wheat? (and what is the deal with gluten anyway?)

Avo toast

Back in 2013 I embarked on my gluten free life. At the time I didn’t know it would be so permanent but now that I have thoroughly researched it, I am glad that I am (mostly) gluten free.

It started off by having a baby. Why would that have an impact? Well this newborn baby of mine screamed his head off every time I ate wheat. No, he didn’t have a strange phobia of sandwiches but rather, 7 hours later, the components of the sandwich ended up in my breast-milk which he then drank. It took me a few weeks to figure it out (and you can read more about it in another blog post) but he had silent reflux and the “wheat” upset his tummy. It was more specific than wheat, actually the protein in wheat – the gluten.

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Reflux in babies

If you have a baby with reflux your life can almost be a living hell. They scream, they are very unsettled and unhappy, and they don’t sleep. They also like to be held upright which (although cuddles are wonderful) is exhausting when it is 24/7.

I had one of these babies and It was very difficult until I figured out how to fix it. For my experience, within 24 hours I had a very different baby. No screaming, no crying, and more sleeping. Within a couple of months it was totally gone.

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Help me Jackie the naturopath! My baby has a head cold

One of the most common questions I get as a naturopath and a mum is how to get rid of a cold/cough/runny nose in a sick child. It actually sparked me to create my Toddler and Kids Immunity program, as it is a common issue in families, particularly coming into winter.

The problem is, the younger the child, the trickier it can be to help with “home remedies” as they are not on solids, so cant take over the counter nutrients and herbs. When younger babies are sick, OR if your older child is catching everything that goes around, and is sick more then they are well, it may be better to bring them in for a naturopathic consultation. However if your child is eating solids and gets the occasional head cold then you may find the following advice helpful.

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MTHFR gene – what is it? And what does it mean?

dna-capsule

Genetics – it seems complicated and mind boggling that a bunch of proteins (our DNA) control every aspect of our lives, and that one very small change in DNA can have far reaching consequences. It is unfortunately true. And science has not been able to change our DNA. We are stuck with what we are dealt at conception.

A new part of genetic investigations is the MTHFR gene variations. Why is this important? Because it is estimated that between 40-60% of the population have a variation in this gene. Chances, are, if you are reading this, you may have one. I have one, and so do many of my patients – hence my strong interest in this area.

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Toddlers and Children Immunity Program

tissues

I’m sure you will agree that when you have a small child, and that child is sick, everyone suffers – not just the child involved. Sleep deprivation plus grizzles and grumbles, often from the little person who often cant articulate what is wrong – it can be very unpleasant for everyone.

If your little one is at childcare, or kinder, then they will also seem to catch everything going around. A certain amount of this is healthy and ok (3 or 4 colds in a season builds and strengthens their immune system) however when they are sick more often than they are well, this is a problem and something can be done.

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