Is Going Organic Going to Help Your Health? Part 2

Part 2 of a 3 part series, treat if you missed part one read it here.

Another label you may see is “no hormones” or “hormone-free”. This is usually in regards to milk or meat products and is actually incorrect, since all animals naturally produce hormones. Hormones are what helps an animal (even a human) regulate body organs, have young, and otherwise function. All meat products have hormones. What the labels really mean is that there are no artificially added hormones; these are sometimes given to animals to increase milk production and meat bulk. While common in the USA, in Europe there are restrictions on added hormones in animal husbandry, because of the unknown effects on us in the long term.

There is increasing evidence that the higher numbers of xenohormones in our environment, from hormone treated foods, pollution, chemical pesticides & multiple other sources,  are already apparently affecting the age of puberty in our children, the incidence of PMS and polycystic disease, and early perimenopausal symptoms. It makes sense to keep these to a minimum.

Wishing you Health and Wellness!

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Is Going Organic Going to Help Your Health? Part 1

When you head to the grocery store or supermarket, order shopping for products like eggs, meat, fish, milk, and produce can be very tricky. Signs are posted everywhere labeling food as natural, organic, hormone-free, welfare-friendly —but what’s the difference? Learning what specific names mean can help you decide if you should shell out extra money on a product or if it is simply a marketing ploy.

Natural is a term associated with a number of fruit and vegetable products & even shampoos etc. Often, this is simply a marketing gimmick to convince you to buy the product, and is now very much over-used. After all, all fruits and vegetables are natural – but they may be covered in pesticides or wax to improve their appearance… For any foodstuff, unless it’s a new kind of food that has been developed and processed, the product is natural.

What you might look for is foods labeled as organic. Organic foods are grown without chemical pesticides and fertilizers. There are two main benefits to organic foods. First, by buying organic, you are helping the environment because those chemicals are not being introduced into nature. Secondly, you are avoiding ingesting chemicals and are therefore having more healthy foods. However, organic products are usually more expensive. One option if you’re on a budget is to be selective, and skip over organic fruits and vegetables that you can peel, like oranges and bananas. After all, once you’ve discarded the peel, you’ve also discarded most of the chemicals. Instead, opt for organic items like apples, where you eat the peel – or peel them anyway. No matter what you buy, however, make sure that you rinse off your food when you get home.

Wishing you Health and Wellness!

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

What Is Menopause? The Answer Will Empower You.

As a woman your life has been marked with nothing but change, but no one says that these evolutions must be shrouded in secrecy or negativity. Each metamorphosis should actually be viewed as the beginning of an exciting, new chapter in your life. Yet when you arrive at this latest phase of your life, you cannot help but wonder, precisely what is menopause?

To truly understand menopause, you must also understand the two stages that exist on either side of the transition. Perimenopause begins in most women around the age of 40 and is most evidenced by a less regular pattern of your cycle. Your periods might be shorter, longer, heavier, lighter, or at differing intervals. All of these markers signal that the next stage is right around the corner.

The word menopause stems from Greek: the root ”men” from ”mensis” which means month and pausis which means cessation. Ancient Greek or modern English, it simply recognizes the end of your monthly cycle; consequently, menopause technically begins 12 months after a woman’s last menstrual period. Prior to ovulation during the childbearing years, a woman’s ovaries produce heightened levels of estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen controls the timing of an egg’s release into the fallopian tube. Progesterone, on the other hand, controls menstruation and prepares the uterus’ lining to accept the fertilized egg. In menopausal women, however, the levels of estrogen and progesterone are significantly lower. While menopause is frequently mistaken as being caused by changes in the uterus, it is changes in the ovaries that are really at the root of the transition.

According to the Mayo Clinic, even though menopause is a universal experience for all women, it doesn’t prevent there from being “…physical and emotional symptoms of menopause [which]can disrupt your sleep, sap your energy and — at least indirectly — trigger feelings of sadness and loss.” The most important defense you have against these challenges is an open line of communication with your doctor and with other women your age. Your physician possesses the medical expertise necessary to alleviate some of your symptoms and to empower you with an understanding of your body. Friends who are your age can offer you the mutual support of someone who is likely experiencing very similar emotional and physical taxes. A combination of both resources will make this transition a smooth one for you.

Finally, after successfully traversing the transitional waters of menopause, you will exit on the other side as a post-menopausal woman. You will find yourself permanently alleviated from many of the irksome menopausal conditions such as hot flashes, weight gain, hormonal emotional swings, and irregular bleeding. Another upswing is that you will also find yourself freed from the regular cycle that has dominated certain aspects of your life for years.

Don’t be fearful or ashamed of the changes you are experiencing. They are natural changes that have and will happen to all women everywhere. Please contact us today to arm yourself with the knowledge you need to gracefully address the stages of menopause.

Wishing you Health and Wellness!

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Stress tips: How could adrenal fatigue be affecting your life?

How many of us feel as if we are constantly under stress these days? Managing stress can be a tricky thing; I know, rx I have been there, ampoule plummeting to near-burnout in 2004, and resurfacing with new vigour after piecing together a holistic health system to help both myself and my clients. It was not a pleasant experience, and it was great to experience vitality again…

Adrenal Fatigue is a name now being coined (not by doctors, who will tend not to recognise the syndrome) for the effects of this chronic day to day stress upon the body. Our adrenal glands are in overdrive trying to cope, releasing almost constant cortisol to a degree that our bodies were never intended to cope with.

Our adrenal glands are small endocrine (hormone-producing) glands situated above the kidneys. They release the hormone cortisol in response to stress – this is a catabolic or “breaking down” type hormone. The adrenal glands also release DHEA, or dehydroepiandrosterone, which is a natural anabolic steroid with anti-ageing effects.

If our adrenals are producing an excess of cortisol, such as happens when we are under stress – which may be from work, family, finances, over-exercising, or other sources – the building blocks for DHEA are diverted and we end up with less DHEA production. Also the flexibility in the system, and ability for the cortisol levels to recover to the low natural background levels after a stress, are reduced with age – so the ravages of stress are multiplied with natural ageing…

The complicating factor is that the sex steroid hormones are all linked together, one being created from another in a cascade, so levels of one hormone such as progesterone will affect others such as testosterone.

So what symptoms would you get with adrenal fatigue? Classically a feeling of general tiredness – “TATT” or “tired all the time” – which is such a common symptom now; a real problem with getting up in the mornings as the energy levels are at an all time lul at that point in the day; you may feel more energetic after 6pm in the evening, although this is by no means universal; and people often find they self-medicate with caffeine or carbs and sugars in a vain attempt to keep their energy levels up.

If you feel that you may be suffering from adrenal stress or fatigue, do consider having hormone levels done – a self managed saliva test can be very helpful (not on the NHS if you are in the UK). It may well be worth your while to work with a trusted holistic healthcare professional who understands the impact of your lifestyle and nutrition on your stress levels and reaction to stress, to come up with a plan going forward.

DHEA is one of the bio-identical hormones that I work with in my holistic medical practice, along with bio-identical (chemically the identical to our own hormones, as opposed to HRT) progesterone and oestrogens.

Wishing you Health and Wellness!

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Stress Solutions – Ideas for Changing your Mindset

The Match Game – ideas for changing your mindset!

How many of you have heard of the Match Game?

It is something that Dr Wayne Dyer mentions in his book and audiobook, here The Power of Intention.

I would strongly recommend Wayne Dyer to you all – he is an inspirational speaker and author, here and you cannot fail to have your life changed for the better by being in contact with him in any way – I count him among my many mentors and inspirations.

He suggests that we siply look at the thoughts or phrases that enter our head but bring negativity into our lives and experience, and try to reframe them.

It’s a fun game to play, and I tried my hand at it – I suggest that, when you have a moment, you take a pen & paper & do the same!

Here are some examples from my own time playing with these ideas…

If I start out with the phrase “I never have enough money for our bills” (and doesn’t that create negativity inside as you say it? But isn’t it so common to many of us?

This causes a mismatch with our soul, as we can see fro the feelings and muscle tension we feel.

I reframed it as “I intend to attract unlimited abundance into my life”

Now I know the sceptics among you will already be groaning – but hold your horses… We are already subject to a ton of negative conditioning in our lives, why add to it?

So – take a look at these paris:

“I never have enough time” (hmm, I always seem to feel this way…)

“I have an abundance of time, and can achieve anything I wish to in my lifetime” (well, when you put it like that… I know we don’t know when we are going to leave this world, but do I have to achieve everything this week?)

“I always have too much work to do” becomes

“I intend to create the team around me to complete all the work that I need to “

“My husband never clears up after himself” (that old bug-bear…)

My husband is a kind, generous and loving man who saves me time on a daily basis by shopping and cooking”

“I am a useless money manager” (well I never used to be!)

“I intend to manage my money effectively using my team and my systems”

“I hate being surrounded by clutter” becomes

“I intend to attract a beautifully clean and clutter-free environment”

“My kids are spending too much time on computer games”

“We are lucky to live in a time where my children can enjoy computers, and I intend to spend more time with them so that they fill time with other, more active, things”

I hope you get the idea? In my practice, I often have people who are suffering from stress, burnout or depression. One of the first steps I get them to take is to gradually start retraining their brain from being their inner critic to being their best friend. This is one of the tools that I use.

Now it’s your turn – what thoughts can you reframe now?

Wishing you Health and Wellness!

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Menopause Solutions – 3 Simple Tips For Reducing Your Headaches Through The Perimenopause – Tip 3 – Reducing Stress

Could your headaches be related to your hormones?

TIP 3. Look for ways to reduce your stress levels. This sounds easier said than done, I know, so take it a step at a time. Our stress levels rise during the menopause for several reasons,

With the drop in oestrogen and progesterone in your body, the serotonin (the “happy” hormone) in your brain is also reduced. This can cause a big change in your moods.

Hormones play a major role in how we react to everyday situations and when the main hormones start changing, so do your moods.

Also, many women find that they are facing major stresses in their life around the time that menopause starts, which can also affect moods. The time when your children move out to go to college or live independently can be a big blow to your self confidence, while retirement (either of yourself or your partner) can be a big issue, as can health worries. When combined with hormonal fluctuations, these can all contribute to mood swings.

Cortisol is made by the adrenal gland and is the primary “fight or flight” hormone.   When a person is stressed out regularly, high levels of cortisol have profound effects on our immune system and chances of getting virtually all illnesses.  When cortisol is elevated it contributes to storing calories as fat, particularly around the middle. Ways to reduce stress include yoga, deep breathing techniques, tai chi, meditation and avoiding processed foods.

When you are suffering from hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and other irritating problems caused by perimenopause and menopause, it’s easy to become frustrated. Most women tend to get a bit grumpy when they don’t sleep well, and lack of sleep can be a headache trigger. Add being uncomfortable to the mix and you have major mood swings, even without the confused hormones.

If you don’t like running and avoid the gym at all costs, you might prefer an alternative form of exercise. Try taking a yoga or martial arts class or swimming. Dancing is another good way to get some fun exercise in. Taking some sun each day can also boost serotonin levels, there is no better mood lifter than a good walk, and it’s free while giving you the opportunity to get back to nature.

So, avoid processed foods, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and go organic, more fresh vegetables and fruits, with higher fibre and whole grains.   Exercise regularly, get some sunshine which will boost Vitamin D levels, and get enough sleep every night. Enjoy your water – and enjoy your life! Especially if you have reduced your headaches…

Action Step: Make a list of 5 things you can do to reduce your stress levels

To your Health and Wellbeing

Alison x

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Menopause Solutions – 3 Simple Tips For Reducing Your Headaches Through The Perimenopause – Tip 2 – Water

Could your headaches be related to your hormones?

Here is another tip that helps most headaches, look whether hormone-related or not…

TIP 2. Drink enough clean water. Dehydration is a common cause of headaches, story but this doesn’t mean tap water! Tap water is too full of chemicals and often xenoestrogens (artificial chemicals with oestrogen-like effects). Even bottled water may be contaminated, especially if they are sold in plastic bottles, so invest in the best water filtration system you can afford.

Dehydration, even if it is very mild, causes your stress hormones to increase because the body interprets dehydration as a life-threatening situation. When your stress hormones increase, it causes a cascade of changes to your thyroid and sex hormones, as well as your insulin. Try to drink 1.5 to 2.5L of water every day to maintain your hormone balance.

Action Point – keep a measure of all the fluids you drink over a 3-day period, quanittiy as well as quality. If you are drinking a lot of caffeinated drinks such as cola, tea and coffee, you may well be dehydrating yourself and adding to your woes. Likewise, juice is a surprisingly high sugar, high GI drink, so use it cautiously.

To your Health and Wellbing!

Alison

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

Menopause Solutions – 3 Simple Tips For Reducing Your Headaches Through The Perimenopause – Tip 1

Could your headaches be related to your hormones?

Headaches are such a common problem that many women consider them normal, recipe and are caused by a variety of factors. Many of us find headaches are worse with stress, stomach and as well as stress hormones, headaches are related to changes in sex hormone levels – which can occur at any time of our lives, including the premenopause, the time from mid 30s onwards when things start to go awry.

If your headaches are worse when you are pregnant, before or during your period, or when you are on oral hormone therapy, these are clues that they may be sex- hormone related.

TIP 1. Identifying any food triggers that may be making your headaches worse. Common triggers include onions, red wine, cheese and chocolate, as well as caffeine and sugar, but we are all individuals and your food triggers may be different to your friends. Some foods that can improve hormone balance at this time include; eggs, chicken, whole milk, ground flax seed,  ground chia seed which are high in the omega 3 oils and fibre.

Of course it is better to eat these proteins from organic and welfare sources where hormones and antibiotics are not used, and stress hormones are not induced by living conditions..   For example eggs from free-range chickens have different cholesterol content than eggs from chickens that are fed hormones and that do not run around to find their own food.

Action step – why not keep a food diary & see what links to your headaches.

Have fun!

To your Health and Wellbing…

Alison

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary ”Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)

 

Perimenopause Strategies – 5 Tips for Recognising Hormone Imbalance

Many women feel that they are going mad through their 40s and 50s, or even before that!  The symptoms of the menopause don’t suddenly start when you are 50 or 55 – and they are not just hot flushes!

There is a period of time 10 or even 20 years before the “menopause” (clinically, this means your last period – and of course, you only know this in retrospect) when things may seem to be going wrong. There are so many symptoms that are vague and just seem to be a part of life, that we don’t recognise that things are awry.

In fact, hormone imbalances are common. Very common. They are partly man-made – I am the first to admit that in our attempts to reduce unplanned pregnancies we doctors encourage teenagers to go onto artificial hormones significantly earlier than in previous decades. They are partly due to toxins in the environment – you may have heard of xenoestrogens, those artificial oestrogen-like chemicals which are found in plastics used for packaging, drugs, pesticides, and other sources – they are difficult to eradicate from the body. I will discuss them in a future post. They are partly related to our diet and lifestyles – our bodies certainly did not evolve to deal with processed foods and the sedentary TV-led lifestyle all too common these days.

Some symptoms of hormone imbalances include PMS, insomnia, miscarriages, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), weight gain, lack of sex drive, lumpy breasts, anxiety, infertility, acne, hirsutism (excessive body hair), thinning of hair, exercise intolerance, low blood pressure, cyclical headaches – and much more!

Mood swings can occur at any age, but they often get worse as we approach the premenopause (years leading up to menopause) and perimenopause (years either side of your last period).

Stand by for more posts on hormone imbalance and how to improve it – things can change!

To your health and well-being,

Alison

 

Dr Alison Grimston

If you are interested in taking action to move your health to the next level, please apply for a complimentary “Get Your Life Back” Strategy Session by filling out the contact form on https://www.dralisongrimston.com/contact/ (Please note – it doesn’t matter where you are in the world for you to benefit, as long as you have an internet connection or phone line)