Tips for Dealing with Fussy Eaters......

Hands up mummas who have a FUSSY EATER!! I feel your pain....

Understanding that there are fussy eaters.....and then there are FUSSY EATERS. If you are not aware of my story, I had a very FUSSY EATER! I think my kid invented the term!

No amount of cognitive behavioural techniques worked, so much so that he was referred to a childhood psychologist at 15 months of age.....SAY WHAT!!! Over the years I've been to at least 5 pediatric dieticians to resolve the issue and NOTHING!  Eventually it became clear his fussy eating was a symptom of a root cause, in his case, a very unbalanced gut microbiome and nutritional deficiencies. Once this was resolved.....MAGIC, the fussy eating was also resolved. You can read more that here.

Then the are kids, that are just fussy eaters because of a learnt behaviour and will easily respond to some cognitive behavioural techniques. This is the category that most children fall into.

One of the biggest take-aways in all of my years speaking to various professionals trying to resolve this issue for my son, was that as parents, it is our responsibility to choose what they eat, it is their responsibility to actually put the food in their mouth. Sounds so simple right, but I can tell you it was one of the hardest concepts to carry out when you are knee deep with a child that refuses to eat MOST things you provide, unless it was something on the the accepted child food list. What can I say is that when the root cause was resolved, the fussy eating also resolved and never to be seen again! What bliss that was.

So, how do you deal with kids that are fussy eaters due to learnt behaviours? These tips come from a culmination of working with various professionals trying to resolve the symptomatic behaviour. There were common threads from ALL of them.

Creative Solutions to problems.....

Creative Solutions to problems.....

Here are some tips when dealing with a fussy eater, that is generally healthy otherwise:

  1. You provide the food and leave it up to them whether they choose to eat it or not. If they choose not to eat it, do not give any attention to it – that is exactly what they are looking for
  2. Let them know it’s their choice to eat or not eat, but there will be NOTHING else served up till the next meal or snack....which is typically 2.5-3hrs later, so they will not starve. They will probably be more inclined to eat at the next meal
  3. Get them involved in the meal planning and meal preparation. Such a pain I know, and I had so much resistance to this, but when they feel included in the decision making, they are more inclined to at least try the food
  4. Be a good example yourself and eat a varied nutritious diet
  5. Do not offer food as a reward, this sets up the wrong message early on about food
  6. Keep meal times as relaxed as possible, just know that after you have served the meal, your job is done. It’s now over to them to eat. It's a good time to practice gratitude for the day. If you feel you are being triggered by their resistance, come up with strategies how you will handle the irritation and anger. A gentle reminder again, once the food is on the table, your job is done!
  7. Serve food in buffet style, especially good for older kids – gives them a sense of control
  8. Trust their self regulation – they know when they have eaten enough and when they need more. We tend to kill this for them, by constantly coercing them to eat more, when in fact, they have just had enough. This really stung for me as I'm a recovering control freak..lol

Ways to improve nutrition :

  • Smoothies  - there is so much goodness that can be added to this drink;
    •  Wholefood super powders – this is one is my favourites from Nutra Organics
    • Additional fats such as avocado, nuts, coconut oil and butter
    • Ground up seeds such as sunflower or linseeds which are also great sources of essential fatty acids, zinc and calcium
    • Berries – fabulous source of Vitamin C and anti-oxidants
    • Clean protein powders. Another favourite of mine from Nutra Organics
    • Hydrolysed gelatine for gut healing goodness
  • Avoid serving fruit juices at meal times, these can act as a filler and serve empty calories. Water is best.
  • Wholefood and variety is the biggest key
  • Serve vegetables multiple ways. E.g My kids are not a fan of eating straight broccoli or cauliflower, but blitz it, tossed in olive oil with spices and it will happily be eaten. Don't give up, be creative
  • Foods high in Vitamin C such as red and green capsicum, parsley, berries and cabbage. These foods will also aid the absorption of iron from foods.
  • Overall, always try to incorporate a protein, fat and fibre at each meal.

If after doing all of the above consistently for a period of time and you are still concerned with your child’s health, then contact a qualified health practitioner to further assess.  Remember, nobody knows your child like you do and go with your GUT instinct...pardon the pun :-).

I also offer 90 Min Nutritional Audits. The purpose of these sessions are to:

  • Help you gain clarity for your health & wellness goals
  • Identify potential roadblock & solutions
  • Define a clear actionable plan for you to follow
  • Recommend nutritional improvements based on a food diary review
  • Any other quick wins, based on your Health & Wellness Goals.

If this is of interest, contact me to schedule your appointment.

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Chantal is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Coach that has a special interest in helping stressed and overwhelmed mums heal their children with wholefoods using a personalised wholistic step by step approach.

Healing Eczema a 2nd Time & the lessons I learnt along the way!!

In the interest of being of very open and transparent, I have really been fighting with myself whether to share this or not. I felt like a fraud basing my success on healing my son’s very bad eczema naturally as a baby, and for it never to be seen again until mid last year.

Checking in again with my purpose, vision and passion for what I do, it was to inspire, support and empower as many families on similar journeys to make lasting nutritional & wellness changes to lead a healthy happy life.

With that in mind, I decided it was only right to share my recent experience. After all, living optimally is journey and not a destination and definitely not linear.

You would have thought I’d be all calm and relaxed about this seeing we had been through all this before, but instead I was blubbering mess when the penny dropped as to what was happening.

In fact I freaked out (that is putting it mildly) and so did my husband. It was pure and utter FEAR, as a storm of unpleasant feelings and memories came flooding back. It was a place I NEVER wanted to visit again.

The crazy thing about it, was that the eczema was no where near as bad as he previously had it and it was very localised.

No amount of logic and rationalisation could remove the fear and utter devastation I was feeling. I just kept on thinking “I can’t do this again”. As he is older now and could understand more, his view was “Mum, you fixed this before when I was a baby, you can do it again”, but deep down I thought what if I can’t.

He contracted the molascum virus which is common and ordinarily harmless, however it triggered eczema again.

After wallowing in my own self-pity, I decided to pull up my big girl pants and start the healing process AGAIN. As always, it was a multi-faceted approach.

I sort help from a qualified health practitioner to assist with supplementation as it was obvious his immune system needed some help to fight this virus.

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During the healing process we focused on all 4 key foundations of health and these were the steps that I took:

Nutrition:

Undertaking the GAPS protocol a few years ago, he was already base-lined so I did not feel the need to put him on another cycle again. Instead I took the principles and put them to work. One week a month for 4 months we completed a mini healing protocol, i.e his diet consisted of all soft easy to digest foods such stews, casseroles, soups and plenty of broth, meat and well cooked vegetables. The remaining time the focus was on quality wholefoods with plenty of vegetables, quality protein, quality fats, minimal grains, gluten free and healing foods such as broth and fermented foods on a daily basis

Microbiome

This time I stool tested him and identified that he was particularly low on a specific strain of beneficial bacteria and we supplemented him on a single strain for a period of 3 months.I also ensured his diet contained plenty of PREBIOTIC fibre to help the current beneficial flora to flourish.

Toxicity

By default with what we were doing, we were allowing the body to naturally detoxify itself. Some supplements were also added to assist with this. See below. He also bathed daily in either epsom salts or bi-carb soda to further assist the detoxification process. We are typically a low tox house, so that side of things have always been taken care of.

Emotional Well-being

This was a biggy, more for me than him. It was probably the area that had the greatest impact on his recovery......much to my surprise and a concept I was really RESISTING.

When I consulted the book “The Secret Language of Your Body” Eczema was seen as a result of anger, resentment and frustration. Given his nature of being so grounded and pleasant, I could not understand how he could be experiencing these emotions. After digging some more, I became to understand that this was energetically being fed off me........say WHAT!! I was in fact experiencing these trapped emotions and I was the one who needed to work on my emotions. I used the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) along with a few other strategies to shift this and I saw dramatic results in his skin within 24 hours. I was GOBSMACKED. This was months after working on all of the other aspects above which were yielding results, however actively working on this foundational pillar just really sped up the healing.

I no longer could ignore the impact and connection our inner being had to our physical well-being AND that of our children.

Supplements we found useful and their purpose

  • Colostrum for immune support
  • Saccharomeycess Boulardii – to promote growth of beneficial bacteria and yeasts
  • Activated B – to assist with methylation & detoxification
  • Liver Support – further aid detoxification
  • Single strain & broad spectrum probiotics – promote beneficial bacteria growth
  • Fulvic Minerals – supplementation of trace minerals
  • Essential fatty acid Fish Oil. – good for skin health
  • Vitamin C – Immune and collagen

Other Treatments we undertook

  • Homeopathy to further support healing and he really responds well to it
  • Cranial osteopathic adjustments
  • EFT to support his emotional well-being during the healing process

Please note, I provide this list for informational purposes ONLY and everything listed has been prescribed by a qualified health practitioner purely based on my little man.

Please consult a health care provider before deciding to consume any supplements for health benefits

My takeaway lessons from this experience:

  1. Health is not a destination - it's a journey and you need to be aware, flexible and adaptable
  2. Knowledge is power and empowering. It doesn't matter how many times you need to press the RESET button, you have the tools and knowledge to be able to it
  3. Do not underestimate the power of emotional well-being and it's impact on physical health, i.e. FIRSTLY for ourselves as mums AND then teaching our children how to be emotionally intelligent.
  4. You need work on EACH of the 4 foundations to resolve any health condition long term.

I am pleased to report that his eczema healed beautifully once again, and in fact he so much more stronger and resilient because of it, as we did not try to suppress the condition or the virus, but instead worked at the root causes, supported and allowed the body to heal itself.

I now actually have gratitude for this experience as it has brought a whole new understanding of what it means to be truly HEALTHY and with an innate knowing that you CANNOT just focus on nutrition, EACH of the 4 foundations needs to be actively addressed which I do in my signature 1:1 Healing with Wholefood Program.

If you are stuck on your healing journey, either for yourself or your child, get in contact with me for a 30 minute FREE Health Mapping Session to see how best to move you forward.

 

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Chantal is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Coach that specialises in helping stressed and overwhelmed mums heal their children with wholefoods using a personalised wholistic step by step approach.

 

Improving the health of your gut is not just about popping a probiotic!

Improving gut health is becoming much more main stream, which is awesome news, however the message being relayed most of the time is to pop a probiotic and "ALL WILL BE WELL"!

That is simply not the case. We need to understand the fundamentals and that is, the pathway to Health and Wellness is through nutrition, wholefoods and healing wholefoods in particular.

To think that a typical Western diet can be consumed alongside popping a probiotic is not going to cut it, in fact it could be harming instead.

The focus is ALWAYS going to be on consuming a wholefood diet, gut bacteria diversity and feeding the beneficial bacteria through the intake of PREBIOTIC foods so that a healthy digestive system can be maintained.

What is Prebiotic Food?

It is simply types of food with dietary fibre that feeds the friendly bacteria so that they can grow and multiply

Why is Prebiotic Food needed?

It’s helps the gut bacteria produce nutrients for your colon cells which ultimately leads to a happier healthier digestive system

The difference between Probiotic & Prebiotic Food?

Probiotics – are the beneficial bacteria

Prebiotics  - are food that feed the beneficial bacteria.

So not only do you want to increase and diversify your beneficial bacteria via fermented foods and drinks preferably, you also want to eat foods that feed this beneficial bacteria so that they can multiply

THE TOP PREBIOTIC FOODS TO CONSUME:

1.       Chicory Root – it’s inulin fibre promotes gut bacteria, reduces constipation and helps break down fat

2.       Dandelion greens – increases beneficial bacteria, reduces constipation and is fabulous for the immune system.

  •   Usage tip – add to salads

3.       Jerusalem Artichoke – once again the inulin fibre content increases the beneficial fibre and boosts the immune system

  • Usage tip – can be eaten raw or cooked

4.       Garlic – so many health benefits. Promotes bifobacteria in particular and prevents the growth of disease causing bacteria

  • Usage tip – add it anything you can, such as casseroles, stews, soups, dips, salad dressing, hell even swallow a clove like a tablet. So easy to include this multiple ways daily

5.       Onions- Food for the beneficial bacteria, boost the immune system and helps with digestion

  • Usage Tip – consume either raw or cooked. Add to salads, pickle it, use as base in stews, casseroles and soups

6.       Leeks -  Comes from the same family as onions and garlic and therefore have the same properties

  • Usage tip – Use as a replacement for onionsin bases for stews, casseroles and soups

7.       Asparagus – Not my most favourite vegetable I have to admit! Helps promote friendly bacteria.

  • Usage Tip – Serve steamed with garlic & hot butter butter

8.       Bananas – Who doesn’t love a banana? Increases healthy bacteria in the gut and is known to reduce bloating

  • Usage Tip – eat as is, add to smoothies, use in baking.

9.       Barley – promotes the growth of friendly bacteria

  •  Usage tip – Always soak prior to use to reduce the lectin factor. Use in soups, stews or as porridge

10.   Oats – Promotes healthy gut bacteria and improve blood sugar control

  •  Usage tip – with any grain, soak before using. Use in home-made muesli, porridge, baking in a myriad of ways

11.   Apples – It’s high pectin fibre content helps promote beneficial git bacteria and helps to decrease harmful bacteria.

  • Usage tip – eat organic if you can. Conventional grown is ridiculously high in pesticides. Eat raw with a fat if possible such as a nut butter or use in cooking. Pureed apple can even be used an egg replacer

12.   Cocoa – promotes healthy gut bacteria

  • Usage tip – Use the best quality possible in baking, bliss balls, home-made chocolate and hot chocolate

13.   Flax seeds – It’s fibre promotes healthy gut bacteria, promotes regular bowel movements and reduces the amount of dietary fat you absorb and digest

  • Usage Tip – Grind them up and add to smoothie, make chia puddings, use as an egg replacer and add to baking. I believe these are best consumed when they’ve been soaking in a liquid for a period of time and resembles a gel like texture

14.   Seaweed – Such a great food to add to your diet – increases the population of friendly bacteria, reduces harmful bacteria and boosts the immune system

  • Usage Tip – Add to the diet in the form of dulse flakes which provide a wonderful flavour to soups, stews and broth. Make some dipping nori chips or simply make some sushi

The Bottom Line:

Eating prebiotic foods are just as IMPORTANT as consuming probiotic foods if you want to improve the health of your gut and maintain a healthy digestive system.

If you eat a broad, varied healing wholefood diet, you will be consuming these foods by default anyway!

ACTION STEP FOR YOU - Make a list of the above foods you are consuming anyway and a list of foods you can incorporate WITHOUT causing overwhelm.

If you are feeling stuck with your Healing Wholefood journey, book in for a complimentary Health Mapping Session. The purpose of this session is clearly define where you are, where you need to be and some actionable steps to help you move forward.

Chantal is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Coach that specialises in helping stressed and overwhelmed mums heal their children with wholefoods using a personalised wholistic step by step approach.

 

Homeopathy and why you should consider using it! Interview with Carolyne Hallet

I would love to introduce to you to the amazing  Carolyne Hallet from Homeopath to Health.

Carolyne has been my Homeopathic Practitioner for nearly a decade. She is amazing and ridiculously passionate about Homeopathy and you can definitely feel this through the interview together.

Carolyne first crossed my path when we were trying to heal my son’s eczema and the use of this modality alongside other therapies have been instrumental in our ability to heal him naturally.

It’s so hard to ignore her passion for this medicine and with each and every consultation we had, she was always educating me. What this has meant over the years is that I was empowered with so much knowledge that I was able to replace most over the counter medicine with this type of medicine instead.  This as a mother is priceless! Knowledge gives you confidence and empowerment,  meaning you no longer feel helpless, but instead can take an active part in promoting health and resolving sickness.

I’d be lost without this complimentary medicine as part of my tool box for health.

In this interview, we explore the following:

  1. How her passion for this wonderful complimentary medicine was ignited through her own experience
  2. How homeopathy works. You can read more about that here
  3. What homeopathy is most useful more
  4. The best remedies to have on hand
  5. Her Message to the world – Try it and give it a go.

Watch the Video Interview Below:

You can also listen to the Audio here:

 

Carolyne, can be contacted via her website. Homeopath to Health. Although she is physically located in London, she is able to conduct world wide appointments via Skype or phone. If you are local to London, appointments can be had face to face at her home practice or Neal's Yard in Notting Hill.

I cannot recommend this woman enough!

You can also read more about Dr Emoto’s work here

Chantal is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Coach that specialises in helping stressed and overwhelmed mums heal their children with wholefoods using a personalised wholistic step by step approach.