Sally Swaby - Vitality Goddess
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Showing all posts tagged: hormones
HOW DOES YOUR DAY START??
Bleeping alarm, crazy kids, achey bones, snooze button?? (Or all 4?!)
Lately I've found myself really tired when i wake up, so I've turned back to my 'self-care tool-kit' that I've built over the Years (one of things I love to help clients to create too!) If you are anything like me....your finite amount of energy is often challenged by the curve-balls of parenthood, the juggling 🤹♀️ of work & home...not to mention the sleep!
This is why Self-care is Health-care.
Keeping your 'cup' topped up supports your energy for those curve-balls.
Here is my 4 MUST go-to solutions for a feel-good morning. These are all quick to do for busy households!! - I hope these are useful for you. If so, do let me know!
Sometimes the best thing sounds just too simple to be true...but if you know me...you know how I harp on about water!
500ml on a morning not only increases our metabolism by 30% for 2 hours, it also floods the system with goodness, and gets us moving!
If you imagine compressing on our muscles all night long, in the same way to compressing a sponge - all the water gets squeezed out. Pump the water back in by offering water & then also moving too (choose your favourite pilates move here!)
2. ESSENTIAL OILS
If you have woken up groggy...essential oils are amazing for stimulating our brain! Research has shown how inhlaling oils goes to work on our limbic brain & helps calm the nervous system.
Certain oils have different properties - choose a roll-on, rub into your palms & inhale for best results:
Peppermint - for focus
Orange - for lifting our mood!
Lavendar - for relaxation
Bergamot - for relieving anxiety
I made a 'clarity' blend that has many of these in - do have a tester when you next pop in!
Are you a new Mama?? Then you will find this useful. If you know a new Mama, please share this post with your tired friend that's just birthed a baby!
These are things I wish I'd known 6 Years ago when I had Joshua. There are literally just two things I needed to nail down, and no it wasn't to keep on top of allll the washing, or getting the perfect bedtime routine!!
1. Keep baby well
2. Keep breathing (you & baby)
EVERYTHING else could have waited.
With the arrival of the new Royal Baby, Meghan & Harry have already been asked if he's a good baby & if he sleeps well (!!)
I remember layering new Mum-guilt on myself, about Joshuas routines & if I was doing it right...just so we are clear here, every baby is good....and they all have different routines. Circle back to point 1. & 2. and you are doing great!
Things that can also help...
- Ask for food! You need the energy right now, as you are in recovery. No shaming the biscuits here...AND also eat some stuff with high vit C & zinc content for repair: free-range meats, chickpeas, lentils, seeds, eggs are all great. I also love the food-grown supplements from Wild Nutrition (this isn't sponsored, I just love them.
- Sleep when baby sleeps. Yes I know there is so much talk of losing the baby weight, and some claim to exercise or run around doing household stuff whilst baby sleeps. SERIOUSLY, sleep when the baby sleeps, it's super important for your repair.
- Listen to your body. If you have pain, discomfort, or leak on the way to the loo or when you cough, laugh or sneeze beyond the early days - Your body is talking to you. Seeking out a professional to help you to repair well & gradually progress in a well structured way with the right exercises for you as a post-natal Mum is HUGE. Holistic Core Restore Coaches can be really helpful. As a HCR coach, we specialise in pelvic floor & core recovery. The pre-screen is thorough & we can help direct you to the right course of action for you (like a Womans Health Physio first, for example).
I hope you found this useful - please do share with your Mum friends & let's get empowered Mums feeling good!
Take care x
Are you finding you pick up colds easily?
Or, are you trying to stear clear of the office lurgy?
At this time of Year it is really important to make sure we have got our immune systems fighting fit...and sometimes it can be done quite cost effectively & naturally too!
These 5 things are my family's 'go-to' remedies. I hope they help you too!
1) Vitamin C
With the pelvic floor being such a neglected part of the female body in terms of what on Earth to do to keep it functional....It is time we felt empowered, and, truly, the world needs more healthy vaginas!
Firstly, what is a functional pelvic floor?
- It keeps us able to NOT leak when we sneeze or cough
- It keeps us stopping passing gas in certain situations!
- It ALSO can relax enough to squat down without feeling a 'heavy' sensation in the pelvis
- and, allows us to have comfortable sex
To keep this area happy, you might have been told to "do your kegels"
- A kegel is one full contraction of the pelvic floor. This is perhaps what we come to think of when we are told to "squeeze" our pelvic floor.
The truth is, a kegel is not enough on it's own.
- We have 45 other muscles that are attached to the pelvis, and the pelvic floor works in conjunction with these muscles.
- The pelvic floor also needs to be supple & training it to relax is VERY important (please note, suppleness shouldn't be mistaken for weakness)
So, what can we do?
We need to get from doing a good quality kegel.....to integrating our pelvic floor with all the moves life throws at us, whether it's walking the dogs, to pushing prams or lifting boxes.
If you've ever had any pelvic floor issues, you cannot expect that a kegel performed in isolation, will then carry over to keeping us strong whilst we are out power walking or running.
We need a good quality rehab program that crosses the bridge between a kegel & that power walk/run.
Check out this lovely move below...this shows how a bio-feedback tool captures the activity of the pelvic floor whilst squeezing a soft ball, whilst exhaling on the exertion. Pretty cool isn't it!
Is there a LINK between anxiety & our hormone levels?
When I learnt this, I felt like a huge piece of the puzzle fell into place. It wasn't "just me" or something I had to "work against". Understanding how my hormones worked, empowered me to be able to take actionable steps to stop the debilitating anxiety, the hormonal roller coasters....& bring me to the wellness I have today.
I feel very much compelled to right a wrong with how Womens hormonal health is perceived...so yes...this is probably one of my my most personal blogs to date... In sharing, I hope that it may be able to help you, or someone close to you that may have been told "it's an age thing" or "you've got stress??? How about what's on my plate??"
Feeling anxious is very common, but that shouldn't be mistaken for 'normal'.
What we have on our plate this year, how contactable we are, how multi-tasking we can be, is more than humans have ever experienced before.
Our natural cortisol (stress) hormone is a great survival hormone, which gets to run the show under stressful times...to help us fight or take a flight.
But when it gets released, all our other hormone production has to take a back seat. This includes the THYROID hormones & our anti-anxiety hormone PROGESTERONE.
Here's some ways cortisol can run rampent:
- caffeine (!)
- emotional stress (relationships/family)
- perceived stress (what people may think of us /// what might happen)
- nutritional stress (ie foods that irritate our gut)
- physical stress (too much/little movement)
Do any of these ring true for you?
Now what is very interesting, is the anti-dote of cortisol is progesterone....we don't just make progesterone for fertility purposes....it is our anti-anxiety, antidepressant hormone. Progesterone is produced in the 1st half of our cycle in our adrenal glands, if we are not busy bees making cortisol. Through the menopause this lovely glands are also our main site for producing the juicy oestrogen hormone too.
So we need to take care of these glands! Especially if we want to have a smoother ride through the menopause, as well as feel calmer today.
Fast forward to my missing cycles, PCOS and anxiety....it all linked back to my adrenal glands multi-tasking their way through each & every day. I just didn't know how important my adrenal glands were.
Now, you might be wondering what the solutions are. Maybe you're curious if this sounds like you too.....about what you can eat to help, & if you've got time to cook it! Or you're nervous your busy life can't fit in self-care? I get it, I really do!
Because I'm super busy, and I have to say it...a little impatient...I had to develop a method that would work for me - nourish my body, & save time. I cannot tell you how much I rejoiced when I got my periods back! It showed that my hormones were balancing through the month. The wonderful thing is, balancing your hormones DOES result in increased energy, clearer skin, naturally balancing your weight & stress naturally dialling down.
So, rest assured, I designed my online program to help all Women stay full, save time & nourish their bodies.
Are you feeling like you have stubborn weight that just won't shift??
Maybe you've been told its's just "your age" or to "get used to it" or worse...."to exercise more & eat less"?!
NO WAY :-)
I truly feel that applying old concepts of "exercising more & eating less" just DOESN'T work for us from midlife...stressing the system & working out for longer is an old paradigm, that simply isn't working.
It's time to apply the bang-up-to-date, research-proven methods & put them into action.
Which means exercising SMARTER and getting NUTRIENT DENSE foods in.
Menopause & the 10 or so years leading up to it (known as peri-menopause) has always had a bad press, as with the loss of oestrogen comes with increased risk of:
- bone-density loss
- The increased risk of coronary heart disease
- Stubborn weight gain (esp. around the thighs & bottom)
- Libido running low
Does any of this sound familiar?
The brilliant news, is that there are some simple natural actions you can take....today!
I've cherry-picked a couple of evidence-based studies that I use within my 5-week online Goddess Program, as these are the methods we work on together through a well paced journey of nourishing nutrition & lifestyle.
I'm always blown away with the results we see each time! Here's 2 action-points for movement in mid-life, that I think you will love:
1) Exercise SMARTER NOT LONGER
I just have to share with you the most recent published journal; a 16 week study amongst a group of obese post-menopausal women - one group started endurance training, the other did short-duration, high intensity workouts. Both groups were monitored with their fitbits, had a diet guideline & monthly meet-ups.
The high intensity group (also known as HIIT) LOST DOUBLE the body fat to the endurance group. A whooping 8.7%!! This is very meaningful, and very exciting, as it actually takes LESS TIME to carry out & yeilds more results.
So ladies, when you are deciding on your Summer goals for 2018, bear in mind the bone-building, fat reducing HIIT type of exercise that you will find through a number of types of exercise like:
- Power Plate
- HIIT specific classes
- or bone loading exercises at home (check out my YouTube channel here)
2) Exercise to improve INSULIN SENSITIVITY
Our insulin sensitivity controls our blood sugar levels. Improving our insulin sensitivity helps us to reduce insulin resistance (which can lead to diabetes) and reduce our risk of diseases.
Regular exercise helps us to store sugar in the muscles for up to 48 hours. With resistance training (ie - using weights) showing the best for effectiveness.
This is true even in peri-post menopause (see the study here) This is truly empowering as you DO NOT HAVE TO put up with central body fat because of your age. Find a safe way to start lifting light weights ladies!!!
If you would love an action plan to nourish your body & get exclusive home HIIT workouts for home....I bet you'll love my fully interactive Vitality Goddess Program!
You know when you have a craving for something sweet, that just won't go away...(for Women usually around the 10 days before your cycle starts!) Well, you have got to try these....they really hit the spot PLUS no guilt. It's actually good for you. I promise.
Raw cacao is 'choc' full of magnesium, which eases PMS, helps us feel calm & sleep better...what's not to love?!
If you try these please tag me on social media so I can see your creations!
I've had a lot of questions about 'slimming down' for Summer & Detoxing. But I actually think the word 'detox' can sometimes be be a loaded word, with lot's of mis-information surrounding it!!
>>Do we even need to detox??
>>Isn't that our livers job day in day out anyway?
Detoxing with all the promise of loosing 'x'lbs can be misleading, as yes indeed our liver DOES help us detox day in & day out.
However, some things can become a 'liver loader' and give it a hard time doing it's job.
>> The liver transforms substances that would harm you if they accumilated them. The liver processes it & shuttles toxins & old hormones off to the right channels for elimination. But when it is overworked, the liver has a very nifty 'back door' that spurts out the extra it can't deal with right now, & re-circulates it back into the system....like old oestrogen (hello PMS & cellulite).
You may have an overloaded liver if you:
- Have problem skin
- Have low energy
- Have low thyroid
- Have PMS
- Have low mood
- Have cellulite
The choices we make affect how effectively the liver can do it's job. It's not what we do sometimes, but it is the small things that we do each day that keep our body systems energized. This is great news for busy mums, full-time workers & anyone feeling overwhelmed. This means you DO NOT NEED TO GO ON A CRAZY DETOX TO REAP THE BENEFITS OF A HAPPY LIVER!!
Here are some lovely little daily rituals, that you can fit into your busy life that can make you feel a whole lot brighter & brimming with energy! Not to mention buh-bye PMS & stubborn hips ;-)