Here at Nourishing Insights looking after animals is just as important as people. Did you know that we stock a variety of products to support your four legged friends health needs?
We discovered the ranges when we were looking for something to support the family dog Penny who is 15 and still going strong! Sadly Penny has been blind for many years but she hasn’t let it get the better of her. Recently though she has become a little more distressed and gets anxious when we leave the house. Thankfully we found a natural solution in CALM from Higher Nature’s Pets range. This powdered formula suitable for dogs and cats can be easily added to food making administration straight forward. CALM contains Theanine to increase feelings of calm, Tryptophan helps reduce anxiety and improves sleep and Magnesium which is a natural relaxant. (To read more about the benefits of magnesium click here.)
There are many reasons why our pets may feel anxious including:
But there are products out there to support them. In addition to CALM we also stock Lamberts Dog Calming Tablets. These beef and liver flavour tablets contain:
Penny has greatly benefited from taking a supplement as she is much less anxious and is no longer waking distressed in the night.
Other ways of reducing anxiety in dogs include diffusing chamomile and lavender. In a study by Graham et al, “Dogs spent more time resting and less time moving upon exposure to lavender and chamomile than any of the other olfactory stimuli.” Suggesting that it can have a calming effect.
Playing music can also reduce anxiety in dogs. A 2012 study showed that kennelled dogs who listened to classical music spent more time sleeping and less time barking or crying compared to those who listened to heavy metal or no music at all.
To find out more about our pets range pop into see us at 44 St Andrew Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1JA. Always consult your vet before using any supplements if your pet is taking other medication.
Some of you may have heard that a number of companies have switched from using folic acid to methylated folate in their prenatal supplements. We thought we would explain what the difference is and why it matters which form you take it in.
What’s the difference?
Folate is a water soluble group of B vitamins (also known as vitamin B9) these are naturally occurring and most commonly found in green leafy vegetables, eggs and liver. Folic Acid is the synthetic oxidised version of this and is commonly found in supplements and used to fortify foods.
Why do we need it?
Folate is necessary during rapid cell division and growth which unsurprisingly means that we double our requirement for it during pregnancy. Inadequate folate levels are also associated with the following:
So why does it matter which form I take it in?
In order to convert folic acid into the folate that we need, it has to undergo reduction and methylation in the liver. Unfortunately, around 40% of the population have methylation issues particularly those with an MTHFR SNP (Methyltetrahydrofolate Reductase Single Nucleotide Polymorphism). Therefore, to ensure you are getting enough folate it would be preferable to supplement with bio-available folate rather than folic acid to ensure you are getting what your body needs.
Are there any other benefits?
A study by Bentley et al, found that mothers who supplemented with folate, compared with those taking folic acid, had increased haemoglobin levels at the end of the 2nd trimester and at delivery and that cases of anaemia were lower.
Other defects such as cleft palate and tounge tie are also being linked to MTHFR and poor methylation. Therefore, supplementing with folate may help reduce the occurrence of these conditions (although genetics has its role to play).
Is it only pregnant women who need to be aware of this?
Folate deficiency has been found to be high in a range of psychiatric disorders including depression, dementia and schizophrenia. Epileptics taking anticonvulsants are very often low in folate as these drugs inhibit folate absorption. As mentioned above elevated homocysteine levels are a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke. Therefore people at risk of these conditions due to symptoms such as hypertension or those with a family history of cardiovascular disease may wish to consider supplementing with methylated B vitamins. You may also want to consider asking your GP for a homocysteine blood test to assess your risk.
Which foods should I increase to provide folate?
Dark leafy greens are tops such as spinach and romaine lettuce. In fact the word folate actually comes from the latin word 'folium' meaning foliage, so it's no surprise that the leafy stuff is going to be an excellent source. Also broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts, beans, peas, lentils, nuts and seeds, avocado and asparagus give good amounts. Citrus fruits are also high in folate along with papaya. In short, as long as you eat a goodly array of vegetable and fruits and really emphasise the green varieties you will boost your folate levels well. What you may be less aware of is that liver also gives us an excellent source of this valuable nutrient.
(Testing for MTHFR SNPs and other genomics testing is available through our clinic. Homocysteine testing is also available and allows us to optimise your B6, B12 and folate to maintain health promoting levels, reducing risk factors for disease and also to optimise fertility and healthy pregnancy for mum and baby. Enquiries through firstname.lastname@example.org)
I am one of those strange women who, if she knew nothing else about what she wanted from life, it was that she wanted children. However, when my husband and I started trying it wasn't all plain sailing.
We decided just to go for it but not to put any pressure on ourselves - if it happened then great, if not we would try again next month. I'd always had a slightly longer cycle than normal but around the same time as we started trying, they started to get longer and longer until they stopped completely. My weight also increased although I hadn’t changed my diet and have always eaten well. I had also noticed that I had started to develop acne out of the blue and facial hairs started popping up which was very distressing. Eventually I took myself off to the GP and got checked out. Sure enough I was diagnosed with Polycystic ovaries syndrome (PCOS). Well, I felt like all the wind had been knocked out of me. The one thing I longed for more than anything in the world and I felt like I had lost my chance. Of course I hadn't and PCOS is by no means the end of the road but at the time I just felt devastated.
PCOS is strongly linked to insulin resistance and the doctor offered me metformin and hormone treatment. I decided I didn't want to go that route as I'm the kind of person who sees drugs as a last resort and would rather try something natural first. First stop was to the most knowledgeable person I know when it comes to natural health my mum!
I was relieved to hear that I could manage my condition without pills and with a few changes to my diet I should be back on track in a few months. The first thing I did was to deal with food intolerances which had been a driver in my weight gain. In addition I knew that the insulin like growth factor in milk plays right into the hands of insulin resistance and hormonal imbalance. I also avoided refined carbohydrates in my diet (not that I'd eaten many before) and focussed my meals around a low glycemic index approach. This meant mainly meat/fish and veg, in fact good old fashioned cooking! Of course I still treated myself to the odd slice of gf/df cake, after all food is to be enjoyed! But on the whole I was good and followed mum's advice. There are supplements you can take to support this transition and make it easier as you can support your blood sugar control, cravings and other needs. Because PCOS often overlaps with other conditions, this can vary according to your own history. In my case I already had underactive thyroid and IBS. Underactive thyroid is often associated with PCOS due to the sluggish metabolism, weight gain and resulting insulin resistance. Whatever else you may need to include into your own protocol, chromium is my favourite! (However, check for drug nutrient interactions before taking anything and ask your clinically trained Nutritional Therapist what is right for you.)
After my diagnosis in August I was delighted when by October my periods had returned and the extra weight I had put on was starting to drop off. It was like peeling off a fat suit and I began to recognise myself again. As you can see from the photo below taken at a dear friend's wedding before I made some simple lifestyle changes I was very inflamed.
If you would like more advice regarding blood sugar management, thyroid support, PCOS or fertility pop in and see us at 44 St Andrew Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1JA or call 01224 969637 to book an appointment with Beverley our Nutritional Therapist.
In today's modern world the one thing that seems to escape us is sleep. But are we our own worst enemy? How many of us start the day with a large coffee or tea and continue to top up our caffeine levels throughout the day and then wonder why we can't sleep at night? Or how about spending our evening watching box sets and scrolling through our phones?!
If we want to improve our sleep there are a number of things we can do to help.
1. Reduce Caffeine.
By all means start the day with a cuppa but try and avoid caffeine after lunch time as it can leave you feeling wired. Instead try herbal teas, hot water and lemon or why not try a 'Beet It' shot if you're really flat? 'Beet it' is a concentrated beetroot shot which provide nitrates which convert to nitric oxide. Studies have shown that this can increase stamina and endurance in sport and lower blood pressure. My personal favourite is green tea. Green tea has around 15mg caffeine and also contains the calming amino acid L-theanine which is often found in sleep remedies. It's a great way to reduce caffeine and take something which has many health benefits including being cancer protective.
Tip: Reduce caffeine gradually over a couple of weeks and drink lots of water/herb teas to offset headaches.
2. Increase protein.
Many people make the mistake of reaching for caffeine when that 3 o'clock slump comes. What we should actually be doing is balancing our blood sugars by having good quality protein throughout the day. Feeling tired? Try some nut butter on an oatcake, or carrot sticks and hummus to give you a boost. It's important to include protein in your evening meal and supper if you are struggling to sleep as we need the amino acid tryptophan for the manufacture of both serotonin and melatonin. A late snack of a handful of nuts or a small glass of almond milk or organic cows milk can help promote sleep as they provide us with tryptophan. Watch out for those sugary night time snacks as often we can wake up in the night due to a blood sugar dip. If you we want to get to sleep and stay asleep, this is a great tip to keep in mind. It's also the reason why a nightcap of your favourite tipple doesn't work as alcohol tends to spike blood glucose and as a result we can wake hungry in the night.
3. Exercise daily in daylight
Another way to ensure good melatonin levels is to take a walk during the day, perhaps on your way to work or on your lunch break. Research has shown that early exposure to sunlight ensures an earlier release of melatonin at night which ensures good sleep onset. This is because daylight increases the brain's release of serotonin which lifts our mood and this converts to melatonin to prepare us for sleep as darker light triggers the release of melatonin. You can see why walking in the daylight is a great mood booster also! Just as an observation, I wonder whether the trend towards exercising in gyms with artificial light has had an affect on our circadian rhythms due to a lack of exposure to natural light! These factors also explain why we all need a good routine when it comes to sleep hygiene and circadian rhythm. Any slight change in these hormones can be very disruptive to the whole of our endocrine system.
4. Turn off that device.
How many of us spend our evenings catching up on TV shows or scrolling through our phone's attempting to read the internet?! (I blame instagram!) But all that blue light before bed hugely reduces our melatonin production and sends our circadian rhythms out of whack. We can reduce our exposure to blue light by downloading f.lux to our computers. This app dims our screens to match sunlight outside. Remember to turn off the TV and put away your phone at least two hours before bed time. Why not read that book you've had sat by your bed for 6 months? Or have a relaxing bath?
5. Epsom Salts Bath
Magnesium is really important in helping us to sleep as it reduces cortisol, the stress hormone, which can keep us awake at night. It also allows our muscles to relax helping us to really feel rested. Sadly around 80% of us are deficient in this vital nutrient. Having an Epsom Salts Bath is a lovely way to relax and top up your magnesium levels. Add a mug full to your bath and relax for 20 minutes to absorb the full dose. Then make sure you dab dry rather than rub as you don't want to wipe off all your magnesium. If you have trouble sleeping you may find you are deficient in this mineral. We recommend a supplement to increase your levels in the short term. Come and speak to us to find out which one would be best for you.
If you are having trouble sleeping and would like to know more about any supplements which can support you e.g. Valerian, Tryptophan etc., pop into our shop at 44 St Andrew Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1JA and chat to our Nutritional Therapist, Beverley. It is not advisable to take anything without checking drug nutrient interactions first. We look forward to welcoming you.
BetterYou Magnesium Gel
BetterYou Magnesium Gel provides essential magnesium in a targeted application. Formulated for direct application on joints and muscles to help support relaxation.
BetterYou Magnesium Spray
BetterYou Magnesium Oil Body Sprays are a simple and scientifically proven method of delivering a high dose of absorbable elemental magnesium through the skin to replenish magnesium levels. This range includes sprays help with different areas of your life including sleep, sports performance and joint health.
nutri Advanced Megamag Fem Balance
MegaMag® Fem Balance is a fast-acting powder with magnesium combined with other key ingredients formulated to support female health and hormone balance
High-strength magnesium based formula designed specifically to support hormone balance and reproductive health in women. Our MegaMag® Fem Balance is a unique combination of magnesium , myo-inositol, B vitamins, vitamins C and E and calcium. This combination of ingredients not only supports hormone balance, but also fertility, energy production and the nervous system.
BettterYou Magnesium Bone Lotion
BetterYou™ Magnesium Bone Lotion supports bone health with the combination of magnesium and calcium, expertly formulated at an optimal 1:1 ratio and blended with a hydrating lotion to create a unique way to supplement these two essential nutrients.
An effective alternative to tablets and capsules, providing exceptional support for bone and skin health.
5ml (4 pumps) of Magnesium Bone Lotion delivers a minimum of 75mg of magnesium and 75mg of calcium.
Guaranteed free from
BetterYou Magnesium Skin Body Butter
BetterYou Magnesium Skin Body Butter is a deeply rich, intensively moisturising body butter containing a perfect balance of skin kind ingredients.
BetterYou Magnesium Skin Body Lotion
BetterYou Magnesium Body Lotion is a nourishing blend of magnesium and shea butter formulated to improve skin elasticity, soften skin and relax muscles.
nutri Advanced Megamag Muscleze
MegaMag Muscleze (formally Ultra Muscleze) is a high strength magnesium powder designed to support muscle function and recovery following exercise, It has a tasty orange flavour and mixes easily into water or juice.
One scoop of MegaMag Muscleze delivers 240mg of magnesium in superior, highly absorbable forms that are gentle on the stomach - bisglycinate and malate. The formula also contains malic acid, amino acids - l-carnitine, creatine, glutamine and taurine – and B vitamins including the body-ready, active forms of vitamin B12 and folate(vitamin B9).
Why is Magnesium important? - Magnesium is an essential mineral needed for many body functions. It is the second most abundant nutrient in the body and has many important roles including the support of muscle function, converting food to energy, reducing tiredness and fatigue, the normal functioning of the nervous system and contributing to electrolyte balance.
Why include amino acids and B vitamins? - In order for magnesium to be able to play its part in many of its functions, it needs taurine, glutamine, carnitine and B vitamins to be present. These are all co-factors of magnesium and are needed to support the actions of magnesium within the body.
How does MegaMag Muscleze support muscles and post-exercise recovery? - One scoop provides 672mg of malic acid and 240mg of magnesium. Malic Acid plays a very important role in energy production within each cell. Magnesium supports healthy muscle function, reduces tiredness and fatigue and supports energy-yielding metabolism. Magnesium also helps balance electrolytes which is essential for normal muscle contraction. An imbalance in electrolytes can result in cramps. The formula also contains B vitamins which also reduce fatigue and supports the body converting food to energy.
Who should take Magnesium? - Those who require support for muscle function, tiredness and fatigue and nervous system function may benefit from magnesium.Magnesium can be found in foods including green leafy vegetables, nut, seeds and whole grains. However modern farming methods have sadly meant a decline in the level of magnesium present in these foods.
Why should I take MegaMag Muscleze? - MegaMag Muscleze provides high levels of easy-to-absorb magnesium and is gentle on the stomach. The formula provides a range of other vitamins and amino acids to support the role of magnesium including the body-ready active forms of vitamin B12 and folate (vitamin B9).
nutri Advanced Magnesium Glycinate
High strength magnesium in a well absorbed form designed to support muscle function, the nervous system, energy production, bones and teeth.
What does Magnesium do?
Magnesium is a mineral that is essential for life, and is found in every cell type in every organism. It is needed for hundreds of reactions within the body, including helping with energy production, reduction of tiredness, maintenance of normal muscle function, and keeping your bones and teeth healthy.
Why choose our Magnesium?
Magnesium as glycinate is a superior, highly absorbable form of magnesium, that is well tolerated especially by those with sensitive digestive systems. Provides 100mg of magnesium per tablet.
Who is it suitable for?
Anyone who wishes to take extra magnesium in a high quality, gentle and effective form. Poor soil and processing methods can mean that even those eating a balanced diet might not be getting as much magnesium as they need.
nutri Advanced Megamag Calmeze (Orange)
MegaMag® Calmeze has been formulated to support normal psychological function, a healthy nervous system and to reduce tiredness & fatigue by providing a high strength combination of magnesium, B vitamins, L-theanine, glycine, taurine, glutamine and vitamin C. It is supplied in a tasty orange flavour powder which easily mixes with water or juice.
With many more of us living very busy lives, Megamag® Calmeze can help to support that sense of calm and harmony.
MegaMag® Calmeze delivers 200mg of magnesium in the glycinate form per dose. Magnesium glycinate has been shown in studies to have superior absorption when compared to other forms of magnesium. It’s generally well-tolerated and especially suited to those with sensitive digestive systems.
Magnesium is a very important mineral, involved in literally hundreds of reactions in the body. It is known as “nature’s tranquiliser”, as it has a calming effect on muscles and nerves, but it’s also necessary for energy production too.
MegaMag® Calmeze also contains a specific B vitamin combination that includes vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5 and B6. The B vitamins are very important for the production of energy, as well as for psychological function. Some also help reduce tiredness and fatigue.
Vitamin C is present in a mineral ascorbate form. The health benefits of vitamin C are many, and include energy production, reducing tiredness and fatigue, as well as supporting the nervous system.
MegaMag® Calmeze contains the amino acids theanine, taurine, glycine and glutamine. With the formula being in powdered form, we’re able to provide therapeutic levels of amino acids that would be difficult to achieve in tablet or capsule forms.
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WHAT OUR CLIENTS ARE SAYING
“I did Nutritional Therapy with Beverley and it was life changing. I highly recommend it!” Allison Blakely (Glasgow)
44 St Andrew Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1JA
Tel: 01224 969637
Opening Hours: Sun- Mon: Closed Tue to Sat: 10am-4pm
Late night appointments available on Thursday evening on request.