Written by CEO & Founder Melanie Lawson
My great friend and Nutritional Therapist, Kate Fisk, has been working with me for a long time now trying to sort out my constant health niggles. I say niggles, they’re more than that. They’re often crippling and happiness-limiting. Like many people they’re mostly digestion related and we’ll be covering a whole series of topics on this in the months to come. But there are a few things she’s taught me, and we’ve learned together through ongoing experimentation, that I’d like to share as they’re simple but make a huge difference.
1. Make pooing your number 1 priority
I’ve suffered with constipation all my life and my mother died of bowel cancer so it’s a subject I spend a lot of time on. Kate taught me that if we don’t poo, we don’t clear stuff out. Obvious, I know. But I didn’t know that we get rid of excess hormones, like estrogen, through our poo. Estrogen that doesn’t get cleared out recirculates and leads to an excess which can make things like PMS much worse. The one thing that has sorted out my bowels is a ‘kinda keto’ coffee which Kate adapted from Patrick Holford. I drink this every morning now as my breakfast and I poo every day (soz for the TMI!).
Recipe: heat up a good glug of almond milk (or any kind) with a tablespoon* of ground flaxseed, a tablespoon of almond butter, a tablespoon of MCT oil, half a teaspoon of raw cacao and half a teaspoon of cinnamon (these two ingredients help with detoxing). Blitz with hot coffee in a food processor and that’s it. It keeps me going until lunch and it’s delicious (once you get used to the bits in it!). *Measuring spoon, not serving spoon.
2. Don’t make lifestyle or dietary changes that stress your adrenals
I did the 16:8 fasting for ages, thinking it was good for me with all its documented benefits. So I was drinking a cup of black coffee first thing and then not eating until lunch time. I’d feel totally wired and full of adrenaline all morning, a common side effect of fasting, thinking that was somehow good for me. Putting my body under stress and forcing it to repair and all that. But actually, for someone like me who has anxiety and is very ‘adrenally’ and ‘cortisolly’ (my made up words), it wasn’t doing me any good at all.
3. Go slowly and gently
Don’t make big drastic changes to your diet all at once. I’ve learned this the hard way. In particular, if you have IBS or constipation, don’t suddenly start eating a ton of fibre thinking that’s a good idea. It’s a terrible idea. Start gradually adding little amounts so your body can get used to it. With the coffee I mentioned earlier, I gradually increased the flaxseed half a teaspoon at a time and it took me several weeks until I was up to a tablespoon.
Finally, another thing Kate has made me think about a lot is the effect of past trauma and stress on my body and we’ll do a newsletter on this soon too. Fascinating stuff.
Bye for now! Melanie x