Issue 154

How To Prevent Dry Skin: by Fresh Skin + Spa!

1. Avoid caffeine, smoking, and alcohol. They act as diuretics and are guaranteed to suck you dry!

2. Increase your water level. Drink up! Make sure to drink at least 8 glasses of pure water a day to keep your skin and body properly hydrated. Drink more if you’re super active.

3. Add oil to your bath. Add a tablespoon or so of almond, jojoba, olive, or hazelnut oil to your bath water after you’ve soaked for about 5 minutes. By soaking first, your skin gets plumped up by the water, then by adding the oil, it will seal in the absorbed moisture.

4. Protect your skin from the elements. Wind, sun, heat, cold, and dry office and airplane air can quickly cause or exacerbate the condition of dry skin. Apply a moisturizer before exposing your skin to these moisture-sapping conditions. A lavender, rose, or German chamomile aromatic hydrosol sprayed onto your face, neck, chest, and hands helps to keep your skin wonderfully refreshed and hydrated.

5. Limit hot water contact. Avoid long, hot showers and baths, especially during cold weather, as they dehydrate the skin. Warm showers and baths for a short duration, though, are beneficial to dry skin. Also, limit bathing or washing your face to once a day, usually right before you go to bed. Then, when get up the next morning, apply a bit of herbal facial splash or toner, or spritz your face (and body, if it needs treatment as well) with an aromatic hydrosol and you’re ready to go.

6. Eat plenty of cold-water fish, walnuts, and flax seeds, all rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which can help replace moisture in dry hair and skin. Also consider adding evening primrose oil to your diet. The author takes one 1300 mg capsule dailyˆor every other day, depending on her body’s needsˆand she reports that her skin just blooms! Flaxseed oil is also beneficialˆ1 tablespoon is the standard recommended dosage.

7. Use humidifiers. They work wonders in restoring healthful humidity to your dry home or office environment.

8. Use only gentle cleansers. Avoid cleansers such as deodorant soaps and harsh abrasives. These can cause your skin to feel like a dried-out Thanksgiving turkey. Use a moisturizing soap, soap-free product, or a gentle, grain-based cleanser.

9. For the complete skin care system, make an appointment with one of our skin therapists by calling 4659 9399.

Fresh Skin & Spa - Toowoomba 07 46 599 399

50% off your first laser hair removal treatment(Please contact us through the above link or mention My Health Specials When Calling)

Suite 5, Ground Floor, Medici Medical Centre, 15 Scott Street, Toowoomba QLD 4350


Do You Have Insulin Resistance?:What Is It, And How Can You Tell If Its Affecting You!

Insulin is produced by our pancreas, and is released in response to eating carbohydrate foods. Carbohydrates eventually get broken down to glucose and circulate in our bloodstream. Insulin then comes along and helps put this glucose into the cells of our liver and muscles where it can be used for energy. With IR, the muscles and liver "resist" the action of insulin, hindering glucose getting into these cells, and the body has to make more of it in order to try and keep the blood glucose levels in a normal range. Over time though, this creates a lot of problems, as the body cannot keep up.

A vicious cycle can then be created: a primary energy source is not getting to the cells where it is needed, so fatigue sets it, along with cravings for carbohydrates, which only then exacerbates the blood sugar issue even further. Because there is excess glucose in the blood that cannot be used by the cells, it either gets stored as glycogen in the liver and muscles, or converted to adipose tissue (fat) - mainly around the abdominal area. Remember, most fat is just stored energy waiting to be used!

What are some of the signs or symptoms you may have IR?

Abdominal weight gain: measure your waist. Men whose waist measures > 102cm and women > 88cm are at greater risk. Ideally waists for men should be < 94cm for men and < 80cm for women.
Elevated blood pressure: > 130/85 mmHg
High fasting blood glucose (pre-diabetes) and high insulin levels
High serum triglycerides, high LDLs (bad cholesterol) and low HDLs (good cholesterol)
Increased inflammation
Hormonal dysregulation: women can have menstrual irregularities and men may have prostate problems. Both sexes may lose libido and have fertility issues.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Skin can develop 'tags', especially under the arms, and become rough and darker.

What contributes to the risk of IR?

Sedentary lifestyle: lack of exercise plays a huge role
Family history, eg of diabetes or cardiovascular disease

Stress Insulin Resistance (IR) is a termed that gets brandished around, but what does it mean? It is a medical term used to indicate a condition when insulin, a hormone needed to control blood sugar levels, is not working as effectively as it should. It is not a disease, but is linked to increase risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes type II, high blood pressure and fatty liver disease to name a few.

Alcohol and Smoking
Poor diet: high calorie intake with lots of carbohydrates

Prevention is the key!

It is important to know that most people with IR may have no signs or symptoms. If you have some of these signs (or even if you don't), now is the time to start making changes to ensure IR does not become a problem for you, as it can be reversed:

EXERCISE: increases the body's sensitivity to insulin. It can also help to lower blood pressure and improve your blood lipid profile (cholesterol and triglycerides). At least 3 hours of activity per week helps (can break this into 30 minute slots) and incorporate weight "resistant" training. It also helps reduce stress levels and encourages weight loss.

DIET: a diet high in natural wholegrain foods, vegetables and fruit ensures plenty of fibre and nutrients, including those much needed antioxidants. Have 2 pieces of fruit per day, and 4-5 cups of vegetables. Ensure you have a protein source with each meal as this helps stabilise blood sugar levels (fish is ideal, eggs, lean meats, legumes, nuts/seeds, natural yoghurt). Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates (white flour, white rice, softdrinks, cordials etc) and limit saturated fats such as fatty meats and full cream products). Avoid processed foods - these tend to be high in calories and low in nutrients, and have bad trans fats which promote IR. Limit alcohol consumption to less than 2 standard drinks per day, and have at least 3 alcohol free days per week - my advice is to avoid alcohol altogether. Watch those portions! Drink 1-2L of water per day.

QUIT SMOKING: this increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke and cancer and affects your blood sugar levels.

STRESS: incorporate some stress reduction techniques into your lifestyle - exercise, massage, yoga, "me time".

Lifestyle changes is the most effective therapy you can undertake, not only to avoid or reverse IR, but to enjoy a life of wellness

Cassi Cowlam, Naturopath, BHSc (Nat), D.Th.D, D.Iridol, D.N.Med, The Medical Sanctuary

The Medical Sanctuary Office C2 Ashmore City Shopping Centre, 206 Currumburra Road, Ashmore, Qld 4214 Phone: 07 5564 5013

Childbirth Triggers Hormonal Shockwaves:by Narelle Stegehuis - Mass Attack!


Childbirth triggers hormonal shockwaves Do you remember how you used to feel? You were happy and well, with steady energy and emotions. You slept soundly and woke up feeling rested. Your recovery from illness was fast. You maintained a healthy weight without dieting.

Now your energy lags during the day, you feel emotionally unbalanced and you sleep poorly. You can't lose excess weight even while dieting. You use caffeine or carbohydrates as pick-me-ups.

Things instantly change when you have a baby and we are taught to expect that. But how things change often take women by surprise: the intensity of emotions, unexpected strains in marriage, a new connection with in-laws, and unintended disconnection from friends without children. All of these new circumstances require time and solitude to process, two luxuries new mothers rarely have.

Your body changes - forever. There are the obvious changes in breast & body shape, but most importantly your hormones change too.

Symptoms of hormonal imbalance include:

being very emotional and upset
tearfulness for no apparent reason
low libido
being tense an anxious " difficulty sleeping
constant worry
tiredness & lethargy
weight gain

Many chronic illnesses in new mothers go untreated, because symptoms are mistaken for common complaints of sleep-deprived parents. "Well, you just had a baby" can answer for a lot of problems, but sometimes there is more to the story.

But some women suffer more intense, longer-lasting postpartum troubles that can threaten their health - and these troubles may be directly related to the thyroid.

Postpartum thyroiditis is a condition in which the thyroid becomes inflamed and dysfunctional after delivery, due to antibodies.

Postpartum thyroiditis typically follows a pattern: at first, you become hyperthyroid, and might feel breathless, nervous, mentally confused, have unexplained weight loss, or trouble sleeping. This phase usually appears anytime between one and four months after the birth of the baby.

In the second phase, which usually shows up three to eight months postpartum, your body becomes hypothyroid. Symptoms of this stage might be depression, fatigue, weight gain or difficulty losing weight, and an enlarged thyroid gland or sensation of pressure in your neck. Sadly, blood tests don't always pick up a thyroid imbalance leaving you confused.

Your adrenals can change your body shape!

Life stages contribute greatly to stress levels especially the arrival of a new born baby, the sleepless nights, constant nappy changes and readjustments to family life mean you start to feel tired, frumpy and burnt out!

It is important to understand how stress affects your adrenals and ultimately your health. Adrenal Hypersensitivity simply means your adrenals have been, and perhaps still are, working over time.

"Your adrenal glands provide you with crucial hormonal support needed to get through the day with energy, enthusiasm and efficiency. Adrenal hypersensitivity means you are much more likely to suffer from fatigue, forgetfulness, mood swings and sleep disturbances. Living in the 'fast' world of today exposes you to unavoidable levels of stress - and with that stress comes elevated cortisol levels". In its normal function, cortisol helps you meet these challenges by converting proteins into energy, releasing glycogen and counteracting inflammation. For a short time, that's okay. But at sustained high levels, cortisol gradually tears your body down.

Sustained high cortisol destroys healthy muscle and bone; slows down healing and normal cell replacement; co-opts biochemical's needed to make other vital hormones; impairs digestion, metabolism and mental function, weakens your immune system; and interferes with healthy endocrine function contributing to conditions such as heightened Menopause, Sub Fertility, Thyroid imbalance and ovarian imbalances such as PCOS, Fibroids & Endometriosis.

That Tummy Bulge!

One of cortisol's many functions is that it stimulates the release of glucose, fats and amino acids for energy production. It will also keep your appetite stimulated. In addition, the type of fat that accumulates because of this stress-induced appetite will typically locate itself in the abdominal region of your body. Stress contributes to weight gain primarily because of an excess secretion of the key stress hormone cortisol, along with a reduced secretion of the key hormone Dehydroepiandrosterone, or DHEA. DHEA is a steroid hormone synthesised from cholesterol and secreted by your adrenal glands. It's time to value your health.

It is important to adopt and achieve a diet that supports your lifestyle - one that doesn't eliminate food groups but focuses on a formula that works for you! It should foster a passion in you to cook and take pleasure in food - choose flavorsome meals that are spirited and nourishing.

Dietary changes such as reducing MSG, excess sugars and cola drinks can greatly improve adrenal performance. Even the reduction of coffee and alcohol can substantially assist with a symptom like anxiety. Targeted nutrients prescribed by a practitioner, along with dietary changes can do wonders. Herbs such as Winter cherry, Licorice, Ginseng and the amino acid Tyrosine along with Vitamins B5 & B6 are well documented to support healthy adrenal function.

Remember, your health reflects the way you live - so isn't it time you started making some healthy changes?

Narelle Stegehuis, CEO of MassAttack, is a practicing Naturopath specializing in the research and development of natural treatment programs for women with hormonal imbalances, which have contributed to such symptoms as weight gain, cravings, anxiety and mood swings. Uniquely for patient convenience her programs are also offered via the Internet. She is both an accomplished wrier and recent recipient of the Australian Naturopathic Excellence Award 2006. Visit her website at or download your Free E-Book by Narelle Stegehuis "7 Secrets to Weightloss Revealed" Click Here

T: 1300 133 536

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Only Fitness -Buderim, Stafford, Toowoomba 07 3357 7777

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Xmas Gift Idea's: Natural Health & Beauty!

Check out these great Xmas Gift Voucher Ideasfrom South East Qld's finest health and beauty businesses! - simply click the link and fill out the contact form or call and mention My Health Specials,

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more Xmas Gift Ideas at Fed Meat: Our True Environmental Saviour!

by The Nourisher

Climate Change is caused by cow farts...What? Why is a race of omnivore's being urged to become herbivores in order to save the earth? What's the science and who's really to benefit from us eating less meat? . . MORE...


Brought to you by

Short and Sweet:Minted Thai Salad With Salmon!


Minted Thai Salad with Salmon

Serves 4

½ cup chopped mint leaves
2 tbs olive oil
3 cups mixed baby salad leaves
100g bean sprouts
225g thin green beans, blanched
4 spring onions, thinly sliced
½ cup thai basil leaves
½ cup coriander leaves
1 salmon steak grilled & crumbled (bones removed)
¼ cup lime juice
¼ cup fish sauce
1 tbs grated palm sugar

Place ingredients in a bowl & toss with dressing - sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Brought to you by

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Laughter is the best medicine!

What do snowmen eat for breakfast? Answer: Snowflakes.

What's red and white and gives presents to good little fish on Christmas? Answer: Sandy Claws.

What do you get when you cross an archer with a gift-wrapper? Answer: Ribbon hood.

Quote of the week!

"Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out." Art Linkletter Radio and TV Personality

For a Good Cause: Why Support The RSPCA?


To prevent cruelty to animals by actively promoting their care and protection.


To be the leading authority in animal care and protection.



In the next issue of "Naturally Happy"

  • January Gym Guide!
  • January Weight Loss Centre Guide!
  • Mass Attack!
  • The Medical Sanctuary!
  • Short and sweet!
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My Health Specials provides this information for your personal education and enrichment. Information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. Nor should the information replace the advice of your health care practitioner. Always seek professional advice if suffering an illness. My Health Specials Pty Ltd and all parties involved in the conception, production, ongoing maintenance and operation of Naturally Happy accept no liability and no responsibility for any damage whatsoever arising from or in connection to your use or operation of the website or information contained in this e-magazine.