This blog is moving!

Hi! Thanks for being a follower of my blog!

To give you an important update… I’m slowly transitioning the relevant content from this blog account over to my websites new blog page so please head over there to follow if you want women’s/adults/family natural health advice https://www.primalinfluence.com/blog

And head to http://www.autismandbeyond.com.au for child/family disability/confidence/self-esteem/movement focused content.

Register for newsletters / the free opt-ins to stay up to date with new posts and other cool stuff!

See you over on one or both of those!

Aimee

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Eco-friendly & Healthy Easter Inspiration (plus recipe!)

Easter can be an unnecessarily junk-filled and wasteful time of the year so we wanted to put together some ideas and tips to help you, the family and the environment get a little healthier over this period!

You’ll find a new recipe at the end too: Gooey Caramel Easter Eggs!


#1 from A Little Creative

“I use Easter as a time to be creative and have fun. I LOVE Easter hat paradesโ€ฆ and NOT just buying cheap bling to stick on a cheap hat and then throw away ๐Ÿ˜– pull out the recycled paper and cardboard and MAKE something unique! We also enjoy blowing real eggs out and then painting them, and storing them like Christmas decorations to bring out each year! We have an โ€˜Easter Treeโ€™ that tends to be minimalist branches/sticks foraged and painted white to hang the painted eggs onto.

And our egg hunt is more cryptic with lots of clues and the kids having to search all around the house and yard for the next written clue and location to search ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ’•

Some great ideas and inspiration there for a more eco-conscious Easter with the family this year!

Check out their shop and special Easter items! What a great local Sunny Coast biz!


#2 from My Little Party Hire

“My children are 12 and 6 and for them it is about the chocolate hunt. Key is to keep away from any chocolate that is wrapped or presented in plastic. Foil can be recycled. Collect the foils of your chocolate and form them into a big ball or disk. They have to be as big as your hand balms for the recycling machine to pick it up. “

YES!

The recycling promoters such as Planet Ark suggest say it’s essential all alfoil (not the ‘made from recycled materials’ kinds though) is rolled together into large balls before being placed in the curb side recycle bin.

Great tip Jasmin!

Visit the My Little Party Hire website

Find more eco Easter tips on the Planet Ark website


#3 from Eat Yourself Green

“You can get eggs in bulk or per unit at any The Source Bulkfoods stores and itโ€™s deliciously package free”

Love this idea for reducing plastic use and waste! Bulk foods stores usually have paper bags for scooping bulk foods in to buy, usually you can take a jar or your own bag too, as long as they can weigh it first. If you buy some healthier eggs or treats, place in a jar and pretty it up it makes a gorgeous and eco-friendly gift for loved ones!

Thanks Larissa!


#6 from Kayley Farraway Tree Family Day Care

Egg Threading craft activity!

“- Recycled cereal box cut into eggs

– Hole punch

– Rainbow wool

**Tip – wrap some sticky tape around the end of the wool to make a needle like point, making threading easier for little hands.”

What a great way to use up scraps of yarn, to recycle/upcycle some cardboard laying around the house (or raid the recycle bins in the street for some) and to keep the kids occupied these holidays!

Also a fantastic activity for improving fine motor skills!

Thanks Kayley!

Visit the Farraway Tree website


#7 from Our Kindi Folk

We love this great choc egg swap idea using timber eggs from a craft store (or get the hubby to make in the garage if he’s clever enough!) decorated with safe eco-friendly paints. Perfect for n Easter Egg Hunt, as decorations around the home in bowls or hanging with string, as gifts (you could personalise them for the recipients)… so much creativity to be enjoyed with these!

If you can find a local maker of something like this and prefer to buy instead of make, that’s an option too. These guys are in the UK so for any followers of ours over there, hit them up!

Check out their Facebook page


BONUS IDEAS + RECIPES FOR A HEALTHY EASTER

Cook Eat Paleo has some great recipes for all elements of Easter

Find Easter Brunch ideas here

Paleo Leap has a full Easter menu available here

I also suggest sourcing ingredients produced locally when possible, fresh and organic meats, eggs, fruit and veggies, or at least use the Dirty Dozen Clean 15 list and make as many dishes and foods from scratch as you can so you have full control over what’s going into them.


RECIPE: Gooey Caramel Easter Eggs

Ingredients

100g chocolate (your fave block from the health food section/store or chunks from the bulk bin – dark is best)

1/4 cup raw honey (locally sourced is best)

1/2 cup pure coconut milk

Pinch of pink salt

Water for the double boiler

โ€‹Handy items to have

  • Tray
  • Easter egg moulds
  • Silicon spatula 
  • Spoon
  • Small saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Measuring cup
  • Double boiler of some kind (I use a glass container that sits nicely on top of a saucepan)

Method

  1. Make the caramel by simply heating the coconut milk, honey and salt in a small saucepan, whisking regularly and letting it thicken up to no longer have a runny consistency. Have the temp up high initially to allow the mixture to boil then turn it right down to simmer until ready. Remove from the heat and allow to cool down completely before using
  2. Melt the chocolate using a double boiler method
  3. Spoon the runny chocolate into the moulds and half fill them, ensuring the sides to the tops are coated. It can help to have had the moulds in the fridge beforehand, as the chocolate will then stay on the sides easier
  4. Place the moulds on a tray and into the freezer to become firm
  5. Remove them from the freezer and use a small spoon to place a dollop of cooled caramel sauce in the centre of each on top of the firmed chocolate
  6. Spoon more runny chocolate over the top to fill in the rest of the space in the moulds then return to the freezer to finish setting. Keep a couple of teaspoons or so of runny chocolate aside for putting the egg halves together. Use a silicon spatula to tidy up any chocolate spillage and drips.
  7. Once the rest of the chocolate has set, it’s time to bring the individual halves together by gently scoring the flat parts, rubbing on the last of the runny chocolate and firmly placing the halves together to make whole eggs then allowing, once again, to set (fridge or freezer). Try to fill in any gaps along the seems by using your finger to spread the chocolate

โ€‹These eggs should then be able to stay out of the fridge and can be wrapped in foil pieces from the craft store for gifts, egg hunts etc.

โ€‹The caramel won’t set, it’ll stay gooey inside.

See more healthy recipes here


If you have any questions for us regarding these ideas and/or products we use, email us at info@primalinfluence.com or comment below.


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health!

Aimee

Primal Health Coach

Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram + TikTok

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Breaking Down Breakfast Time

Answering the big questions..

Is it really ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ most important meal of the day?
What does a healthy brekkie look like?
What other factors are there at brekkie time other than just the foods we eat?
Breakfast ideas for fussy and restricted eaters?

and more in this blog!


๐—œ๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฎ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ธ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฒ ๐—ฒ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด?

That’s a controversial question in the health realm for sure! Some say it is, some say it’s good to skip it and continue the fast from throughout the night into later in the day.

In all of my years learning about and living the Primal way I’ve definitely come to the understanding that breakfast is an important time to eat, for most of us, if not all of us.

Let’s look at why brekkie is an important meal, thanks to the wisdom of Mark Sisson of Mark’s Daily Appleโ€ฆ

“Breakfast is When You Break Your Fast

Historically, breakfast was a term used to describe your first meal of the day, no matter when that meal took place. Sometime around the 15th century, it became synonymous with the meal you consume shortly after waking up. And now, thanks to the hundreds of thousands of people thriving with intermittent fasting, breakfast is returning to its first-meal-of-your-day roots.

Simply put, breakfast is how you break your fast.

Whether you have a planned eating window or your fast is just the hours that youโ€™re asleep, the meal that answers the dayโ€™s first call of hunger is arguably the most important.

Let me repeat that: your first hunger of the day is the most important.

Itโ€™s your bodyโ€™s first polite request for you to deliver substantial, supportive, and sustainable fuel to your body.

Benefits may include:

  • Your cravings disappear
  • Youโ€™re not thinking about food 24/7
  • You have more sustained energy
  • You stop snacking all day
  • You sleep better at night
  • Youโ€™re not spiralling into guilt or shame because you binged once the sun went down”

I 100% feel my best when I’m eating a good meal in the morning. Not necessarily right away, or as my first ‘activity’ but definitely eating brekkie is my jam. Pun intended, cos, I love puns! Brekkie helps fuel my brain for funnier puns too.. haha


๐—ข๐—ธ, ๐˜€๐—ผ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ธ๐—ป๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ป๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ธ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜, ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ป๐—ผ๐˜ ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป?

Basically, what most of the world eats most mornings. Grain-based cereals, toast, sausages full of flours and other fake stuff, crappy bacon, tinned baked beans, acai bowls, fruit and greens smoothies, green juices, just a coffee, pastries, muesli bars, protein bars, regular pancakes and waffles, syrups, jam, vegemite, margarine… the list continues but I think that covers most of the standard breakfast options.

If you’re still not convinced that cereal, toast etc do not play a role in a healthy lifestyle (for kids or adults, anyone at any age) refer to our blog all about GRAINS for all the info to get educated.

Why aren’t liquids like smoothies and green juices a good idea? A main reason is that our digestion starts in the mouth when we CHEW our food. Drinking a meal isn’t good for the gut. Another reason is that greens, fruits etc are highly inflammatory and end up causing more problems than positives to our health.

Why aren’t bars healthy? They’re full of junk! Simple!

High fruit brekkies aren’t good for us, if there’s way more sugar than protein and fat.

A high carb meal first up is going to make us hungry again and have an energy drop within a few hours.


๐—œ๐—ด๐—ป๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐˜… ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ‘๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต๐˜†’ ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐˜€

๐—ง๐—›๐—œ๐—ฆ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฎ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ธ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ธ ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ธ๐—ฒโ€ฆ

Animal based. Honest to goodness. Eating meat, animal fat, gelatin/collagen, bone broth and eggs makes the basis of a nourishing start to the day. Animal protein and fat provides long-lasting energy, a high level of essential nutrients that are bio-available (meaning the human body knows how to process them properly and efficiently), and extremely low in (if any) anti-nutrients.

Meat muffins, leftovers from dinner, slow cooked meat, cold roasted meats, eggs done a kazillion different ways, meat waffles, mince patties, good quality bacon, bone broth, collagen/gelatin, cheeses (dairy and not) cooking in and adding beef fat, lard, ghee, butter… there are so many ways to have a nourishing and enjoyable animal-based brekkie meal.

Adding in a few other healthy low-inflammatory options like avocado, mushrooms, some veggies, and low-sugar fruits (e.g. berries) are great too. Even whole fruit jelly can be a great addition to breakfast meals.

Then the sometimes ingredients like coconut yoghurt, coconut cream/milk, honey or pure maple syrup, fruits, paleo flours turned into breads, cereals, waffles, pancakes etc.

It’s really not hard to switch from standard crappy options over to nutritious alternatives. It takes some effort, planning and time initially, a transition period, then getting used to it so it becomes the ‘norm’. We did it over a decade ago. And if Clint, who said “๐˜ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ๐˜ญ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฆ๐˜ท๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ ๐˜จ๐˜ช๐˜ท๐˜ฆ ๐˜ถ๐˜ฑ ๐˜ฃ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ” can do it, anyone can!


๐—” ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ธ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ท๐˜‚๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ!

It’s so sad that most of the world thinks a healthy breakfast consists of standard cereals such as cornflakes, sugary kids cereals, mueslis etc, wheat and grain-filled gluten-free toast, spreads, icky green drinks, fruit bowls and smoothies, conventional coffee (non organic) with regular highly processed milks (skim being the worst)…

When the actual healthy options are based on animal foods, low inflammatory whole foods and essential minerals. And a good start to the day is about so much more than just the foods we eat! How much outdoor time we get matters too. Sunrise (or as close to) light directly on our skin and in our eyes, our feet touching the earth, breathing in fresh air, moving our bodies.. it’s all super important on a regular basis.

Let’s start thinking about breakfast time in a more holistic and all-rounder approach. Instead of sitting around a table or in front of the TV eating junk and not doing anything else.

๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™Š๐™‰๐™€ ๐™ฃ๐™š๐™ฌ ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ฅ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช ๐™˜๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™ฉ๐™–๐™ ๐™š ๐™›๐™ค๐™ง ๐™– ๐™—๐™š๐™ฉ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ง ๐™—๐™ง๐™š๐™ ๐™ ๐™ž๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ข๐™š?


What we do + eat at breakfast time

#1: Consume Sole on an empty stomach (mineral salt drenched water in a glass of water to remineralise the body)

#2: Outdoor time barefoot, moving, getting fresh air.

#3: Early sunshine directly in the eyes and on the skin.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is sun-in-eyes.jpg

#4: Eating a nourishing animal-based brekkie meal.

That’s what we do most days of the week to turn our get-up-and-go hormones kicking in, to fuel us, and to keep us full and productive all morning.


Recipe + meal ideas

A simple mince meat pattie with eggs is an easy one, add avocado or mushroom, some low sugar friends or whole fruit jelly, or bone broth, and you have an insanely healthy fuel source to start the day. We sometimes make and ghee-daise which is so creamy and delicious, and for leaner meat we add raw beef suet packed full of bio-available nutrients.

For other ideas check out our website.

Adding offal is a very good idea and a great way to hide the flavour is in patties! Meat Muffins is a brilliant (and popular) time saving breakfast idea, Meat Waffles are different, there are healthy swap recipes for sometimes-meals like pancakes, there’s a couple of cereal options.. a few things to hopefully inspire you to create nourishing breakfast meals for you and the fam ๐Ÿ˜‹


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health + more happiness!

Aimee

Primal Health Coach for Women

Visit our website:ย Primal Influenceย 

Follow us on socials:ย Facebookย +ย Instagram + TikTok

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Returning to our Traditions

Quite a unique topic because it’s a little outside of the usual zone of health and wellness we focus on, but just as important as any of the usual modern paleo lifestyle content.

We’re as modern and ‘normal’ as the next couple in so many ways… we love to get our dance on at live music gigs, going to the movies, chilling out to Netflix, wearing regular clothing, getting dressed up to go to something fancy, we live in a built-up urban area, we drive a nice 4×4, we have ‘normal’ hobbies, we even own an Xbox!

But we also like to incorporate primitive living elements our ancestors used into our modern lives because it connects us to our roots are humans and provides a type of satisfation and inner confidence not comparible to anything else.

From as primal as possible, to more modern versions, we love dabbling in primitive and ancestral skills ourselves, and teaching them to others when we can.

In this post we’ll talk about some of our favourite skills and activities, their emotional and physical benefits, how to take them up no matter where you live, for kids AND adults alike. The benefits and positive changes we’ve seen in those we’ve shown this stuff to, and with others who practice these skills have been quite amazing. So we hope you feel inspired to try some of these yourself!


Basket Weaving ๐Ÿ—‘๏ธ

Let’s kick this blog off with a great intro activityโ€ฆ making coil weave baskets with natural materials.

There are loads of types of traditional basket weaving and making techniques, from different parts of the world, but back in the day when the first humans had to come up with a way to make food and other items transportable and for storage they would have used whatever was available to them in whatever wayย was most practical and functional. Different cultures have different methods and rituals of course but at the end of the day there are no real rules when it comes to this type of activity. Creativity and ingenuity are encouraged!

The method of coil weave is very basic and one that took me a few goes to get right and I used different materials in different ways, I wasn’t taught but I found out the general basics online before starting. I knew a local beach spinifex grass was an option as the material, as well as lomandra which is a really common and useful native plant. The only only non-natural part of my baskets has been the yarn needle used but one of my to-do-eventually projects is to make a needle from bone so it’s all totally natural!

Basket weaving can be a mindful, calming, relaxing, frustrating, annoying, fun, painful and enjoyable activity. As with most traditional activities all kinds of things can go wrong, there’s almost always physical and mental challenges involved, and the intention you have before starting and while doing it can change how you feel about the experience and the outcome.

It’s sometimes nice to do alone, or with others, like any craft really. Kids, adults, anyone can give it a go and benefit. It can be quite tough on the fingers as well as time-consuming so it’s helpful for building resilience and patience – attributes sadly becoming less common these days.

If you’d me to make a video on how I create simple natural coil weave basket, let me know!

Alternatively there are heaps of tutorials online and in books.


Star Gazing ๐ŸŒŸ

“Weโ€™ve been fixated on the starry sky since our inception. We have stared at the cosmos as humans, as Neanderthals, as base simians, and, no doubt, as the scrabblers who came before the primate. There are recordings in chalk, cuneiform, tablet, scroll, paint and stonework from every era of man, in every corner of the world, dedicated to the mapping of heavens we knew we would never touch. Mapping the stars was a method of early compassing, aiding travellers and sailors with their recognizable constellations. If you knew the stars, a clear night could always guide you home. But these reasons for stargazing have staled with the advent of modern solutions. We have GPS now, and the pagan beliefs which spawned the first gods and heroes who populated the cosmos have been consigned to history books, labelled as mythology rather than religion. So, why stargaze in our modern age?

Beyond the fact that the stars are beautiful to see, same as any fine art, the main reason may be that it helps and heals us on a mental level.

Piff (a psychologist) defines awe as a crucial social function; a requirement for shifting our focus from individual, self-focused concerns and expanding our perspective to include othersโ€™ well-being. Whatโ€™s felt when experiencing the grandeur of natureโ€“be it Earthโ€™s or the starsโ€™โ€“is a catalyst for inspiring goodwill and broader social-thinking in us. Looking on the galaxy, we recognize that we are one small piece of an enormous whole, and we become more likely to act on our ability to help others within our own small world.” – Optics Max

We absolutely agree with that take on why star gazing is so important. Not only that but it’s calming, relaxing, interesting, and a sky full of twinkling stars is just so beautiful.

๐Ÿ”ญ There are apps you can download to help you and your kids learn about what you can see above you at night time, some astronomy groups hold public get-together and education sessions, and of course, just going out to a dark area to see a sky full of stars at night is just a nice thing to do. There are plenty of ways to learn about the night skies above or just to enjoy them.

Are you already into star gazing or is it something you’d like to start getting into?


Using Sticks to Make Fire ๐Ÿ”ฅ

+ why everyone should try it at least once!

Whenever we demo this primitive skill to others they get really impressed and say “I couldn’t do that” because it seems so hard to do. The reality it is.. it can be hard but doesn’t have to be. If you’re lost in the bush and are unfamiliar with the natural materials around, there’s nothing artificial or modern to use to make fire and you’re experimenting with what you find then yeah, that’d be hard. But if you have access to materials that you know can work and you’ve practiced the method then it’s really not hard to do.

Once the materials are ready it can take just 10 seconds to make fire!

It’s more complicated than just picking two random sticks and rubbing them together quickly, there are a few other key elements. And when you understand the process and actually manage to get am ember then a flame, it’s honestly one of the most satisfying human experiences.

There are quite a few different friction fire methods, we’ve tried two popular ones: Hand Drill and Bow Drill (modified version). Hand Drill is one of the hardest and the first type Clint attempted and achieved. It was a huge and exhilarating achievement! We actually partnered up and got fire together one night, he did most of the work but I helped, something we’ll never forget!

Since then we’ve taught our nephew and his best mate (AKA The Jacobs) the steps to take to learn fire making using a flint and steel with natural materials up to a modified bow drill method they achieved on the weekend with help from Clint. It’s physically challenging and tiring, so when it’s successful it’s such a huge reward and the boys were over the moon when they eventually got it.

Clint and I have achieved it with this method first go together which I’m super proud of and it’s re ignited (pardon the pun!!) my passion for this stuff, it’s now more of a priority to fit these projects and activities into my super busy modern life. Why? Because it makes me feel good. It brings me closer to my roots as a human being. It makes me a more capable human. It gives me confidence and inner strength. Learning and doing well with skills our ancient ancestors used for not only survival but, in many cases, to thrive, brings a connectedness and deep satisfaction I can’t compare to anything else.

Not only is learning fire making extremely practical and functional should you find yourself in a situation where it’s crucial and can save your life, it’s also just incredibly rewarding, interesting and enjoyable in general.

Stay tuned for our next newsletter when we include info on HOW to get started, even how to get the kids into it safely and other important benefits it can have for them.

Check out a previous blog 5 ๐™๐™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™จ ๐™„โ€™๐™ซ๐™š ๐™‡๐™š๐™–๐™ง๐™ฃ๐™š๐™™ ๐™›๐™ง๐™ค๐™ข ๐™๐™ช๐™—๐™—๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™๐™ฌ๐™ค ๐™Ž๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™˜๐™ ๐™จ ๐™๐™ค๐™œ๐™š๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™ง โ€“ ๐™—๐™ฎ ๐˜พ๐™ก๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™ฉ


Foraging for Wild Foods ๐ŸŒฟ

Many of you will already know this is one of my fave things to do! I love foraging! I got into it quite a few years ago, when, like with all the primitive/ancestral/traditional skills we dabble in, came from an interest in expanding our knowledge and experience within this sphere of health and well-being, further to just how our ancestors ate (i.e. ‘Paleo’). Eating paleo is just one element, our ancestors did a lot more than just eat! But eating is a big one, and since supermarkets and even farms and markets weren’t around for an extremely long time (until the Agricultural Revolution) humans had to hunt and gather their own food.

Now, I believe hunting for animals is far more beneficial than foraging for plant foods, as animals did give us, and still do give us, the most nutritional benefit and energy to sustain life, but plants were a supplement and also used medicinally.

It’s interesting because from what we’ve learned about humans in history, in primitive times generally men were the hunters and builders while women were the gatherers, cooks and creators. Not always of course but generally speaking, because often everyone had to be capable at every task, but in most cases men and women had different roles. Clint and I feel very connected to those roles and interests respectively today, just naturally. He’s naturally more connected to tracking, hunting etc while I can’t help but look for edible plants around me!

Once I learnt to forage for wild foods I couldn’t ‘un learn’. I’ve never lost interest. I go through periods where I’m not overly active in foraging but I’m always noticing what natural foods are available wherever I am. Native and introduced, I’m fascinated by it all and I love nibbling on a few berries or fruits while I’m out and about, or taking a few home with me to cook and use in interesting ways. Or to turn into healing balms and poultices. It’s a very handy and rewarding skill to have that definitely enriches my life. I’ve been lucky to teach this skill to many groups of people of all ages and have even inspired our niece and nephews to enjoy foraged food when they’re with us which I love.

Disclaimer: I never ever ever consume a wild food without being 100% certain of identity and edibility. And I’m always extremely conscious and protective of the eco systems.


Hunting ๐Ÿน

Or simply learning about + using the tools!

Another eventual transition for us within the Paleo Lifestyle sphere was hunting. The idea of being able to source food to eat, from absolute scratch, with an incredibly basic weapon… well it doesn’t get much more ‘human’ and natural than that! Clint, more so than me, grew a very keen interest for primitive hunting, in particular using traditional bows and spears. He was gifted a beautiful recurve bow and taught himself to shoot arrows still and moving targets (in our garage and driveway believe it or not!!). He managed to hunt a hare on a solo camping/hunting trip to the country after learning safe, ethical and smart hunting methods and a lot of practice. It was an emotional and meaningful experience for him and one I hope to experience myself some day as I want to become a trad hunter like him. We’d practice way more often if we could but we just don’t get the time needed, or the space, to become really good at it or to provide lots of food and useful materials.

He used almost every bit of that hare and it fed us so well for many meals. Meals we’ll cherish the memory of no doubt forever.

Besides using bows for hunting we enjoy simply using them for target practice. Clint even made a bow (for me!) and just that whole process was an amazingly fulfilling and interesting experience for him. Making and practicing using a ‘weapon’ is not the same as hunting, can have huge benefits physically and emotionally and hunting doesn’t have to be about actually killing an animal for food, it can be about every part of the process up until that point.

Ever watched a child build a hunting tool and pretend to go for prey?

It’s a natural and instinctual practice.

Other than traditional-style bows, Clint also dabbles in spear making and loves to teach kids how to make and use spears. Throwing is a natural human movement and skill (because we once had to throw as part of surviving) and shouldn’t be limited to balls and frisbees. Making and throwing a spear well for physical fitness can be more challenging, more rewarding and more enjoyable.

With spear making comes whittling and knife skills, understanding and appreciating natural materials used, learning safety, patience and gaining confidence. Honestly, the joy these kinds of practices and skills have brought us is indescribable. We hope this inspires you to start looking into traditional hunting practices and methods in a modern way, even if not for the end purpose of actually hunting.

Clint’s tips on how to get started making hunting tools:

Spear making:

  • Start with a basic whittling knife (there are rounded blade end versions for kids) and use green, light and soft timbers for practicing, either fallen, cut or bought. Bamboo makes a great fishing spear and Macaranga (native to Australia) makes great atlatls and throwing spears.
  • Remember (and teach to kids) the ‘blood bubble’ rule where you outstretch your arm with the knife held and if you can touch someone around you they’re in your blood bubble, therefore you can’t start until you move away from them so they’re no longer close enough to be inside it.
  • For bamboo spears, slice one end into 4 points and sharpen each point, wedge a stick across each direction about 3 inches deep and tie in place with string
  • You can make rock and glass spear heads if you want to get right into it too
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  • Make green wood spears stronger and harder by hardening in fire (in the flames)
  • Look on YouTube for “traditional spear making” videos

Traditional Bows:

  • Start with a Board Bow and use a piece of straight-grained timber from the hardware store. Spotted Gum works really well and was used to make Aimee’s bow
  • Watch YouTube videos for tutorials and to find out what equipment you need for the process
  • I built a timber shave horse and used a draw knife to make bows but more modern tools can be used
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This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is bow-making.jpg

Kids Bows:

  • These can be made with any slightly bendy sticks with string attached to each end. Saplings work well.

Arrows for Kids Bows:

  • Find small, straight, light sticks, whittle one end into a point, glue 3 feathers onto other end for the ‘look’ of a proper arrow

Proper Arrows:

  • Buy these from a local supplier or online or make some with dowel, proper feathers, points or blunts, nocks etc. Certain pieces of equipment are needed for this, much like the art of fly making for fishing, so if just starting out it’s definitely easier to buy ready-made arrows suited to the bow you’re using.

Building Basic Shelters ๐Ÿ•๏ธ

Most survival shows talk about how to use the tarp you just so happen to have in your backpack to make a basic shelter if lost in the wild. What if you don’t have a tarp or similar?!

Knowing how to build a basic and functional shelter using natural materials makes sense. And it’s a great activity kids can do just in the backyard. Not only does it teach them about their environment and what they could use if they needed to construct a survival shelter, it also teaches them about structure (what works and what doesn’t), patience and resilience.

When we take the Jacobs’ out for Primal Kids Camps we get them to help with putting the tents up and the next level for ‘shelter building’ is to make one from natural materials that actually works. They did this a few months ago using the debris hut method, a finger saw and knives and they achieved the Silver ‘shelter building’ Primal Kids Badge, with the next being Gold for using ONLY natural materials they can find, and being able to sleep in the shelter for a night (or some of a night at least!) which will be done in Spring when it’s warmer.

It’s a tiring task. And for kids with ASD even more so, and when they get frustrated it’s not happening as fast as they’d like it’s a test of patience and resilience. Supporting them to complete the project, to stick it out (ah, accidental pun!) and feel the pride that comes with making a legit shelter with their own hands is so important and rewarding, for them and for us.

This is the basic debris hut style of shelter, a great beginner design:

Shelter building is a handy skill for all ages!


Putting Our Ideas into Action ๐Ÿ”ช

I said I planned on making a spoon and I’ve started!

We went camping on the weekend to get lots of hunting and project time in. Hunting wasn’t successful but making stuff was!

I found a small piece of timber perfect for spoon making and went about cutting it down, well, starting to, it’ll be a slow process and I need to get my fingers used to it, they’re sore today! Such a nice activity to do while Clint was out hunting and one I can do at home in my downtime.

Stay tuned to see how it goes!

Also during a creek exploration Clint cut some weed trees down and turned them into a stand to hang the camp oven from for paleo chicken curry dinner. It worked brilliantly!


If you have any questions for us regarding traditional bushcraft and hunting methods, email us at info@primalinfluence.com or comment below.


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health + more happiness!

Aimee

Primal Health Coach

Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Natural + Organic Skincare Review: Skin Muk

There are so many natural and organic skincare products on the market these days, ranging in price and sustainability, with some being marketed and advertised as “natural” which in fact aren’t! No one wants to waste their money when they’re trying to do good for their skin, their health and for the planet.

So how do we know what to buy and try?

I often choose the DIY route when it comes to skincare as I don’t use a lot of different products and I’m extremely budget and eco-conscious.

Making skincare concoctions from scratch is rewarding but can be time-consuming and hard to sustain. So when I met the maker of a local skincare range who guaranteed me all of her products are totally natural and sustainable I had to try them!

Not only am I looking for good products for myself, but also to recommend to my Primal Health Coaching clients and Clint’s Private Kids Coaching client parents.

Introducing… Skin Muk!

I met the lovely Serenity at the first 2-day business coaching workshop a couple of months ago, she was sitting next to me for one of the days so I found out about her business and could tell right away how passionate she is about creating quality, effective and clean skincare products.

Not long after, she gave me a box of samples to try and OMG, I was instantly impressed, the packaging and the products looked so beautiful! I felt like I was being spoiled, which is a rare experience for me, but one every girl should have regularly I think!

Local โœ”๏ธ

Natural โœ”๏ธ

Sustainable โœ”๏ธ

Luxurious โœ”๏ธ

Face oil, sugar scrub and 2 different clay samples arrived at my door step looking as pretty and well-presented as anyone could want. I was already impressed just opening the box!

CASSIOPEIA MINI โ€“ FACIAL OIL

I usually use a pure rose hip oil on my skin at night which absorbs in easily and never feels heavy or ‘oily’ after, so I was interested to see how this face oil would compare.

Really well actually! It definitely smells nicer; it has a beautiful aroma. And made my skin feel super soft after gently applying a few drops.

I really like this product. It doesn’t leave my skin feeling oily and it’s luxurious but so simple.

The dropper bottle is good quality and travels easily (no leaking!).

This can easily be for daily use, even before applying makeup, or used occasionally as a self-love pamper day treat.

MOON DUST โ€“ CLAY MASK + STAR DUST โ€“ CLAY MASK

My go-to clay mask option is just boring old bentonite clay but it always leaves my face feeling dry. Ugh.

Neither of these do which is a nice change! I tried the Moon Dust first and definitely noticed the incredible softness the powder has just dry in the hand before adding a bit of water. After rinsing off my skin felt soft and not dry at all.

Serenity says this one can be used as a quick cleanser or mask left on for a few minutes.

I tried the Star Dust powder last night, as a mask left on my face for about 10 minutes, and besides absolutely LOVING the colour (pink!!), I loved how my skin felt afterwards, and even today, it still feels really nice.

I noticed, too, that my skin isn’t breaking out today which it normally would after eating some not-so-great foods after camping on the weekend! Yay!

Very little clay powder is needed when, combined with water, to cover the face so this product goes a long way.

It’s a definite tick of approval from me for these two! โœ”๏ธโœ”๏ธ

Now for my favourite of al the Skin Muk goodies I’ve tried…

PINK NEBULA โ€“ SUGAR SCRUB

Absolutely dee-vine!

As a body scrub to exfoliate my skin I always use DIY coffee and coconut oils scrub. It’s great on my skin but boy it’s messy! It’s something I only use right before housework day otherwise it leaves my bath and shower (combo) oily and with tiny bits of coffee grounds everywhere!

When I first opened the tub of Pink Nebula I was pleasantly slapped in the face with the most gorgeous aroma. Strawberry + vanilla = yum. Even better than coffee and coconut oil, if you can believe it!

I used it on my legs, torso and arms and was so happy with how it worked. The sugar dissolves after a bit of scrubbing with the hand but not too quickly that it doesn’t do it’s job of exfoliating.

Also, it didn’t leave ANY mess. None whatsoever. Woo!

It leaves my skin feeling so soft, not oily at all after use, and a small quantity really does go along way which is a bonus. I am in love with this product and my jar of homemade coffee scrub isn’t getting used at the moment while I enjoy this much nicer scrub tub!

Thank you so much Serenity for gifting me these gorgeous creations. They’re perfect for eco-conscious ladies wanting to look after their skin naturally, and feel a little pampered without much cost or effort.

I’m more than happy to recommend these items, this company, and I hope you check out the full range here โค๏ธ

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If you have any questions for us regarding these products or what other skincare products we use, email us at info@primalinfluence.com or comment below.


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health!

Aimee

Primal Health Coach

Visit our website:ย Primal Influenceย | Follow us on socials:ย Facebookย +ย Instagram + TikTok

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Healthy Kitchen Hacks

It can be so stressful trying to create a healthy space in the kitchen, for ourselves and for the planet. So from what we buy, use, eat and do in the kitchen we’re sharing our top tips for making healthier choices (and reducing stress!).

We hope it helps you and your fam!


DIY Flavour Mixes

If you’re used to buying and consuming pre-made flavour products like sauces, marinades, spice mixes etc it can be pretty daunting at first to think of making your own versions from scratch, but I promise, it’s really not hard and once you start you’ll find it gets even easier pretty quickly!

I like to buy organic dried and herbs from bulk stores such as The Source, especially when trying out new flavours and I don’t want to commit to owning heaps of something, and sometimes the mixes I create are from recipes, based on recipes but tweaked, or just totally random. Often those random creations are the tastiest!

Don’t be afraid to play around with herbs and spices. If you don’t absolutely love a mix you’ve created at first, you can usually change it and get it ‘right’. Start out with just a few simple flavours you know you like then get more adventurous when you feel like it.

Here are some flavour combo ideas to try:

– Rosemary, basil, thyme, oregano for pasta sauces
– Coriander and cumin powders with pink salt mixed well into mince for patties (great with turkey mince!)
– DIY Mexican sauce: coriander powder, lime juice, tomato paste, sweet paprika
– Oregano is subtle and goes nicely with veggies (mash, cauli rice, on roast veg, everything)
– Rosemary on roast veggies including pumpkin and cabbage is delish, especially with ghee drizzled on

Once you find the combos you and your family like, make larger amounts (dry stuff only) and store in jars in the cupboard.

Remember to try and avoid using sugars, white vinegar etc, as the point here is to make HEALTHY swaps!


Bulk-Buy When Possible

It’s not always doable but when you can buy meat and produce in bulk amounts it’s better for the environment and usually better for the bank account too.

Butchers will often sell (or make on request) larger quantities of meat for a lower price. E.g. 2kg mince for a few dollars less. Farmers offer 1/4, 1/2 and whole beast options which is almost always cheaper. Many health food stores these days have bulk food bins (but check the per kilo price compared to packaged products just in case they’re way more exy), local co-ops offer bulk buy options, produce sections at shops and markets all allow for bulk buying, plus you can often find larger sized canned and jar products depending where you shop.

For example, Clint and I like to get a huge 1.6kg tub of grass-fed ghee when we visit my mum in Brissie cos it’s cheaper and uses less packaging. Win!

We often buy 2-3kg of offal mince mix from a local butcher in just 2 bags instead of 500g packs. I recycle the plastic and separate the mix up into smaller containers at home. Easy!

Sometimes though, bulk buying food is cheaper but not eco-friendly and sometimes it’s the other way around. E.g. going in on 1/4 an animal from a local farmer may save you bucks but they might use packaging that isn’t recyclable. Same with buying a big bag of veggies already made instead of choosing your own loose pieces.

You need to be savvy, work out what your priorities are and why you’re looking into bulk buying, and find the best options that meet your needs and goals.

With more businesses adopting sustainable practices today, and some even contributing to a circular economy, there are more eco-friendly options than ever before. But some are more expensive.

๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™›๐™–๐™ซ๐™š ๐™—๐™ช๐™ก๐™  ๐™—๐™ช๐™ฎ๐™จ?


Reading + Understanding Labels

So you can make healthier choices when buying food, cleaning products + more!

Labelling laws in Australia are ok, but they’re not great. For instance, the code for a mixture of ingredients needs to be listed but not what that actually contains. When I first went gluten-free and was doing a lot of research I found out that the code for the caramel colour in a lot of food products may actually contain hidden gluten but that didn’t have to be listed on the nutrition label! Scary!

As a general rule in terms of health for us and the planet, if you can’t understand what an ingredient is then it’s probably best avoided.

๐™ƒ๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™›๐™ค๐™ค๐™™ ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™™๐™ช๐™˜๐™ฉ ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ:
– avoid highly processed cane sugar (non-organic)
– white vinegar isn’t a healthy preservative. Apple cider vinegar is
– numbers and codes = toxins and hidden nasties
– “low fat” usually means high sugar
– added / fortified ingredients such as folate and fibre = bad news
– ignore the government star rating, it’s BS
– soy in any form isn’t good
– look for products with clean and organic ingredients when possible
– foods cooked/fried in vegetable oils are highly toxic

๐™ƒ๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™˜๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™™๐™ช๐™˜๐™ฉ ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ:
– avoid products containing phosphates, sodium carbonate, optical brighteners, surfactants, chlorine-based bleaching agents and ingredients derived from palm oil and petrochemicals as they can all harm our waterways and the environment
– Planet Ark says to look for… “Biodegradable certifications, such as Australiaโ€™s AS4351 standard. Plant-based (rather than petroleum-based) ingredients. A concentrated formulation. This also has the benefit of less packaging, fewer chemicals per wash and smaller carbon footprint for transportation. Specific ingredient information, such as solvent-free non petroleum-based ingredients, rather than unregulated greenwash claims like โ€˜naturalโ€™ and โ€˜eco-friendlyโ€™.”

Learn to read and understand labels, do some research, ask questions to the manufactures if you want clarity and transparency, and try to choose products with simple and natural ingredients.


Go Green But Don’t Get Green-washed

By “go green” we mean to choose more eco-friendly products and behaviours but to avoid being ‘green washed’ which is a whole new and annoying part of today’s semi-eco-conscious world!

‘๐™ƒ๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ’ ๐™œ๐™ง๐™š๐™š๐™ฃ ๐™ค๐™ฅ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™จ ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ก๐™ช๐™™๐™š:
– Using paper and glass when possible, over plastic
– Recycle effectively
– Use biodegradable or recycled material cloths and scrubbers
– Use natural eco-friendly cleaning products
– Using good quality long-lasting cooking implements such as cast iron pans, high quality stainless steel pots and pans, glass baking dishes etc

๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™—๐™š๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ‘๐™œ๐™ง๐™š๐™š๐™ฃ ๐™ฌ๐™–๐™จ๐™๐™š๐™™’ ๐™ก๐™ค๐™ค๐™ ๐™จ ๐™ก๐™ž๐™ ๐™š: Basically, very clever marketing and branding!
– ‘Degradable’ plastic items. These do not help the environment, these plastics just break up into smaller pieces, that’s it!
– Products made with recycled plastics. These often cannot be recycled again as recycled plastics reach a limit of recyclability. Check with Planet Ark, on the packaging for what to do with the packaging after use, local council.
– The words ‘plant-based’, ‘natural’, ‘green’ and ‘eco’ on packaging. If, for example, a dishwashing liquid is cheap like around $2-$3 for a bottle and contains these words it’s more than likely not all that “green” and isn’t safe for the waterways.

The legit biodegradable, compostable, recyclable and eco-safe packaging (bin liners, foil, cling wrap etc) cost a bit more. Those starchy thin bin liners you see in the health food stores cost a lot more then the supermarket ‘degradable’ varieties that still feel like actual plastic (because they are!)

Find out more about greenwashing here


Cast Iron Isn’t Just Good for Camping

We have 2 small cast iron pans permanently on our stove top, we use them at least 3 times a day and y’know how often we wash them? Maybe once a year if that. It’s so good!

Not only is cast iron one of the healthiest cooking surfaces, it’s incredibly easy to maintain, energy-efficient, can be used in the oven or on the stove, and can make food cook and taste better!

๐˜ฝ๐™š๐™ฃ๐™š๐™›๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™ค๐™› ๐™˜๐™–๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ:

– Fortifies food with iron- Can be bought second hand, easily brought back to life if rusty and therefore reduces the need to buy brand new cookware

– Extremely durable (possibly never having to throw out or replace if looked after)- Really low and easy maintenance

– Sears meat well because it gets hot quickly and easily

– Because it gets hot easily the cooking temp can be reduced quicker making it more energy-efficient

– Creates an even cooking temp BUT the good-health factor can depend on how you season it. If using a seed or vegetable oil then that ruins any chance of it being a healthy cooking surface. Use quality animal fat and it’s soooo healthy!

We do love taking our cast iron camp ovens and pans cooking but even more we love using cast iron every day and will never go back to buying Teflon or any other unhealthy cooking items!

How to look after cast iron used often

  • Keep a jar of grass-fed tallow or lard (rendered beef or pork fat) by the stove and after cooking with cast iron and while the pan is on the hot plate used (turned off but still warm after cooking) add a little bit of fat to the pan if it looks dry, and spread around evenly for a thin coating
  • Do not wash your cast iron unless absolutely necessary, and if you do wash it, follow the steps below to season in the oven 1-2 times
  • After cooking, if food remains, just scrape it off with a spatula and season slightly with a bit of fat if the pan looks dry. We cook eggs and meat on our pans every morning and just scrape off any excess food into the bin or sink
  • It’s important to only add a thin layer of fat to season after use, or none at all if fatty meat was cooked and left some fat behind. Scrape off excess fat if the meat was really fatty
  • If wiping down the stove with a wet cloth often, be sure to check the bottom of the pan every so often for signs of rust, then do a seasoning round in the oven as mentioned below if needed
  • Tomato and other acidic foods break down the seasoning layer so keep that in mind if regularly cooking tomato in the pan

How to bring rusty cast iron back to life

  • Use natural salt flakes and an old cloth/scourer to scrub any rust flakes or old food off
  • Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees Celsius
  • Remove any non-oven proof bits (such as timber handles on camping pans which should easily screw off)
  • Use grass-fed tallow or lard (rendered beef or pork fat) and rub a thin layer all over the pan/pot
  • Place in the oven upside for 1-hour
  • Carefully remove from the oven to cool down (or turn the oven off and leave the door open for it to cool down before handling)
  • Repeat the fat layering (when cool enough to handle) and another round of 1-hour in the oven
  • 1-3 rounds should be plenty, depending on the state of the cast iron. An old rusty piece may take 3 rounds, whereas a simple re-seasoning of a well-looked after piece may only require one round

‘Cleaner’ Cleaning!

Swapping from chemical cleaning products to natural and eco-friendly doesn’t mean cleanability is reduced. Often, the chemical cleaners we’re told are so effective actually just hide the dirt and stains, they don’t actually clean it off!

A major downside of using chemicals to clean with is how they reduce our immune system, not just impact the environment. Let’s implement more “clean living” practices in how we actually clean!

There are generally 2 main options:
– buy ready-to-go eco-friendly natural cleaning products and solutions
– make your own

I’m as time-poor as the next person so I don’t go to great lengths to DIY everything but simple vinegar and tea tree oil is pretty much all I need for cleaning the kitchen during my weekly or fortnightly housework day. The rest of the time we use WATER to clean surfaces. Because there is such a thing as being “too clean”! Meaning… in an attempt to clean away nasty germs we clean away all the good stuff which also can reduce our immunity.

Using chemicals and over-cleaning are both sure-fire ways to reduce our heath.

Swapping chemicals for natural and safe alternatives and cleaning only when necessary are good for us and the environment. Yay!

There are stacks of natural eco-friendly cleaning products on the market these days. Be careful of green-washing when buying the lower cost items but you’ll find legit options at any health food store, some markets, some supermarkets, online, at local co-ops etc.

๐™Ž๐™ค๐™ข๐™š ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™ ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™˜๐™๐™š๐™ฃ ๐™˜๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ž๐™™๐™š๐™–๐™จ:
– Vinegar and bicarb or Bon Ami powder for the sink
– Micro fibre cloths that last aaaaages and don’t need products added
– Vinegar, bicarb and tea tree oil paste left on a stain for a few mins (great for laminate surfaces)
– Vinegar and lemon spray
– Castile soap, washing soda and borax can all be great

Find out more about how to choose more eco-friendly cleaning products


Recycle Right

If I go out to the communal recycling bins at the front of our complex right now and look inside any one of them I can bet you a decent sum of money there are items in there that shouldn’t be. It drives me insane!

Unfortunately our local Council does very little (almost nothing) to educate residents on how to recycle properly. I’ve been extremely proactive, cos I really care about this, and have taken it upon myself to find out what can and can’t be recycled, through contacting Council directly, using info provided by Planet Ark, RedCycle, TerraCycle + other organisations who deal with this stuff.

Even just the other day I was chatting alfoil recycling with someone (not sure how that came up in conversation lol) and they didn’t know it has to be saved up to be made into a large ball before it can go in the recycle bin. Most people don’t know this!

So you could be trying to recycle but not quite getting it right. It’s really common!

๐™ˆ๐™ฎ ๐™ฉ๐™ค๐™ฅ ๐™ง๐™š๐™˜๐™ฎ๐™˜๐™ก๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ:
– Rinse and dry plastics, cans etc that go in the recycle wheelie bins
– Put soft plastics into a soft plastic bag to eventually fill and take to the supermarket soft plastics bin to recycle – ensure they’re NOT WET though. Food/dirt is ok but moisture creates mold. ‘Degradable’ plastics can’t be recycled.
– Don’t recycle oily stuff like the section of the pizza box that’s oil-stained, oil on packaging etc
– Check with your Council if they accept empty gas canisters and aerosols
– Check with your Council for what they can and can’t take in general! A lot of kitchen and household items can be dumped free or charge if not able to go in the wheelie bin at home
– Check product packaging to see the new ARL (Australiasian Recycling Label) so you know what can be done with each packaging element
– Buy recycled/eco-friendly paper towel (we use Who Gives a Crap)
– Buy products with packaging made using recycled materials if they can be recycled or disposed of cleanly (as per ARL)
– Don’t put your recycling items in a plastic bag into the recycle wheelie bin!!
– Don’t recycle oily stuff like the section of the pizza box that’s oil-stained, oil on packaging etc

Handy links:

Happy recycling!


Bonus: Go With Glass

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is jars-pantry.jpg

We didn’t include this bit on our SM posts, so it’s a bonus bit for you!

Making the switch from plastic to glass for food storage and heating is so important. It can be expensive to do it all in one go, so my best advice for you with this is to transition slowly if money is an issue.

Whether a plastic container is “BPA-free” or not, it’s bad for the environment and bad for our health. Plastic is plastic!

Glass is the healthiest and most eco-friendly option.

When we first swapping plastics for glass we waited until the shops near us had Pyrex on sale. We also went to a kitchen outlet store to grab some bargains.

Now, you could easily go online for some, even Kmart and other ‘cheaper’ stores sell glass containers. Grab some from wherever you can access and afford!

The downside of some brands though, including Pyrex, is the lids are made of plastic which cracks and breaks easily and can’t be recycled in the recycle wheelie bin collected by Councils. So look for more eco-friendly lids that will last a long time.

We still use plastic containers but really only for camping because we need the spill-free factor which many glass containers don’t have! But for al fridge and freezer storage and food re-heating we use glass.

The pantry is an easy place to go-more-glass because you can simply wash and re-use jars that had other food inside. Use washable labels or blackboard paint and a chalk pen to label, buy organic herbs and spices, cocoa, oils etc from plastic-free bulk food bins at health food stores and store in the re-used jars.


MORE BONUS STUFF!

Not included on our SM posts, here’s some bonus advice for you!

Spotted at IGA: a huge variety of eco-friendly cleaning goodies…

How to remove tough kitchen stains naturally…

Make a paste of vinegar, bicarb soda and tea tree oil then place on food stains on laminate surfaces. Leave for an hour or so then scrub off using a cloth. Gone!

Especially handy for turmeric and organic curry powder stains!

A better option for baking paper…

There are definitely a few greenwashing baking paper products on the market but Glad now have a “compostable” option which we’ve started using recently. It’s not waxy and it’s quite tin but it does the trick when cooking foods such as our primal pizza on baking paper on the pizza stone.

If you have any questions for us regarding what other eco-kitchen items we use, email us at info@primalinfluence.com or comment below.


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health! Please comment if you have any questions.

Aimee

Primal Health Coach

Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

MINCE: cheap, versatile + nutritious.

And also totally underrated!

Let’s make ‘boring old’ mince more appealing!

Make the most of seemingly boring ground meat by learning about how nutritious it is on it’s own, how to give it a mega nutrient-boost, how to utilise it for meals and make it more interesting, how to source the best types, healthy recipes and lots more in this post!


How to choose the best quality mince

If you have a mincer at home you can buy a huge variety of meat cuts and make amazing mince mixes and then it comes down to choosing the best cuts, taking into consideration health and the environment. While buying mince as-is can be a bit different and more challenging. A packet of mince patties, for example, could contain a whole heap of junk so it’s important to read labels but buying 100% meat is always the best option.

Here are the main types of mince in Australia + recommendations for what to look for:

๐˜พ๐™๐™ž๐™˜๐™ ๐™š๐™ฃ: Free-range or organic. Organic is best but can be hard to find. You can make your own by using a food processor to blitz thigh and breast (then it’s not dry like chicken mince tends to be!)

๐™‡๐™–๐™ข๐™—: Grass-fed or organic. BUT lamb in OZ is usually from regions with lush pasture and grain feed isn’t needed so most lamb mince should be ok but you won’t know unless you ask the farmer/butcher. “Grass-fed” is the safest and because lamb is fatty it’s important it’s not fed on grain otherwise the omega 3 and 6 ratios are out of whack.

๐˜ฝ๐™š๐™š๐™›: Grass-fed or certified organic. Most beef in Aus is given grain unless the farmers choose to rain their cattle on pasture only. Organic doesn’t equal grass-fed but it means there were no chemicals used on the farm or the animal.

๐™†๐™–๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™–๐™ง๐™ค๐™ค: Wild is best. If farmed then it’s likely to have been fed grains and soy.

Roo mince can be more gristly then other meat and is incredibly lean. I often use it as I would beef mince. Stronger flavour though.

๐™‹๐™ค๐™ง๐™ : Definitely free-range at a minimum or organic if possible. Hard to come by good pork and can be expensive but worth it as conventionally-raised is reeeeeeally unhealthy.

The better quality mince the better it is for your health + for the planet.


Why mince is so healthy

Good quality mince (see previous post) is great for our health. Beef, for example, is a good source of protein, zinc, vitamins B3 and B12, iron, potassium, phosphorus, vitamins B1, B2, and B6 – essential for everyday functioning

Fatty mince (beef and lamb) raised on healthy pasture contain a high Omega-3 to 6 ratio which is ideal.

Kangaroo, an underdog, is low in fat but high in essential minerals like zinc, and vitamins like B12 which helps produce red blood cells and maintain the nervous and immune system, 80% of the RDI for Vitamin B6 which helps to release energy from the protein we eat, Niacin which helps to release energy from food and reduce fatigue, Riboflavin which plays a role in transporting iron around the body, and Thiamine, an important B-group vitamin necessary for normal energy production.

Good quality chicken contains a range B vitamins, high protein levels, folate, Vitamins A, E and K, and a full spectrum of minerals from selenium to manganese. Fatty chicken from healthy farms has a better Omega-3 to 6 ratio too.

Pork too contains a long list of important nutrients like zinc, niacin, phosphorous, riboflavin, B6 and B12, thiamine and zinc.

๐™๐™๐™š ๐™ฃ๐™ช๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ž๐™š๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐˜ฝ๐™„๐™Š-๐˜ผ๐™‘๐˜ผ๐™„๐™‡๐˜ผ๐˜ฝ๐™‡๐™€, ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š ๐™๐™ช๐™ข๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™—๐™ค๐™™๐™ฎ ๐™ ๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™ฌ๐™จ ๐™๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™—๐™š๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™ช๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ก๐™ž๐™จ๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™ข (๐™–๐™จ ๐™ค๐™ฅ๐™ฅ๐™ค๐™จ๐™š๐™™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฅ๐™ก๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ).

What’s your fave type of mince??


Protein: plant vs animal

“The human body is by mass about 65% water and 20% of what is left is protein, meaning most of the non-water weight of our bodies is made from proteins. This includes our muscles and internal organs, and all of our protein comes from food.

There is a near infinite number of possible proteins that can be assembled from amino acids. Amino acids are the body’s building blocks and we have identified just over 500 so far. The human body requires 20 amino acids but there are 9 that are are of special interest to us: these are the ones that are essential for life; without them, we will die. The other 11 we can manufacture in our bodies for use.

The 9 essential amino acids: Histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine.

It’s not just recommended that we get these aminos; it’s vital. All of these essential amino acids are found together in meats and animals based foods. All can be found in plant foods, but rarely at the same time and never in the same proportions as meats.

Plant based proteins are not clean proteins

We consider a protein to be clean if it is complete without other substances which may or may not be healthy or desirable.

Plants fight back

Plants, and especially plant based sources of protein, contain many other compounds which might not be so good for us, because they don’t want to be eaten. While it’s true to say all organisms seek to preserve life, animals are able to run away or fight; their defences against being eaten are external things like claws, scales, teeth, fur and stingers. Plants can’t run away so they’ve evolved to deter being eaten chemically.” – The Ethical Butcher

Plants contain ANTI-NUTRIENTS: Phytates, Lectins, Oligosaccharides, Oxalates, Goitrogens, Tannins, Trypsin inhibitors, Alpha-amylase inhibitors, Gluten, Chaconine.

๐™ˆ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™ž๐™จ ๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™š๐™–๐™จ๐™ฎ ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ข๐™–๐™ก ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐™จ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง๐™˜๐™š!


The many many ways to use mince

We eat it for brekkie every morning and no, it doesn’t get boring, because we sometimes use different types, in different ways, not the same thing day in day out.

There are just so many ways to use ground meat, here are some, best as paleo versions of course…

Patties
Pasta sauce
Meatballs
Cottage Pie
Lasagne
Nachos
San choi bao
Meatza pizza base
Pizza topping
Koftas
Nuggets
Raw with egg yolk (beef mince)
Chilli con carne
Inside jaffles
Terrine
Cabbage rolls

Phew that’s a lot!

๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™›๐™–๐™ซ๐™š ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™ข๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™ข๐™š๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™™๐™ž๐™จ๐™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ข๐™–๐™ ๐™š?


My fave mince recipes

We eat mince every single day. Sometimes for multiple meals. We love it, obviously! And we never get sick of it because there are so many ways to use it.

Here are my fave cooking methods + recipes:

– Lamb mince fried on cast on, cooked down so most fat is gone and the meat is crunchy
– Beef mince jerky (or with beef heart added, so much nicer and healthier!)
– Paleo burgers either with cos lettuce leaf ‘buns’ or baked green banana flour buns
– Beef mince, kidney and liver patties with 2 fried eggs for brekkie
– Meat waffles (any mince and eggs)
– Turkey mince patties with Original Mingle Seasoning
– Spaghetti bolognese
– Chicken nuggets (using thigh and breast, not mince)
– Shepards Pie with a savoury mince base (fine diced veg, tomato paste, broth and coconut amino with beef mince) topped with mashed white flesh sweet potato
– Lamb lemon thyme mini meatballs, baked, as a yummy finger food
– Meat muffins – savoury mince of choice with egg, baked in muffin trays, makes a great easy healthy brekkie option to simply heat up in the oven and eat
– Pork mince as a primal meat lovers pizza with my green banana flour pizza base recipe, and paleo bbq sauce on top, along with bacon and GF salami

๐™ƒ๐™š๐™–๐™ฅ๐™จ ๐™ค๐™› ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™จ๐™š ๐™ง๐™š๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™š๐™จ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™ฌ๐™š๐™—๐™จ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™š


๐—ฆ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€ (๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐˜‚๐—ฏ๐—ฏ๐˜†) ๐—ฎ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฏ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ธ ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต!

Clint’s good, he’ll try any food and he’ll eat foods he doesn’t necessarily love but knows are good for him, if he can stand them. But kids and partner’s aren’t always that easy to please when it comes to food. Our niece used to be super fussy with meals, she loved the choc avo pudding I made for sleepovers but would not have had it if she knew avo was in it, because at the time she hated avocado! Eventually she started like it and was happy to know she’d been eating it all those years lol but I was quite ok with her not knowing until that point!

Mince is brilliant food for hiding other healthy foods inside. Such as…

– Adding small amounts of minced up offal to make meatballs, patties etc
– Finely dicing or mushing veggies to add into almost any mince dish, meatballs, patties
– Adding herbs and spices for flavour
– Using bone broth for a mega nutrient-boost instead of stock (tastes like stock but is way better)
– Mixing pure grass-fed beef collagen and gelatin powders in, easiest when there’s some liquid or fat that’s liquidy
– Egg is NOT essential when making rissoles, patties and meatballs but egg (pastured) is super nutritious so adding even just the yolk into mince meals for those who won’t eat eggs as is, is a great option

What other ways can healthy ingredients be added to / hidden in mince?

Have you had to be a bit tricky like this for your family members?


Special bonus: new recipe!

Easy Peasy Pasta Sauce!

A much easier and quicker version of my original paleo bolognese recipe, this pasta recipe only needs a few ingredients and minimal cooking.

I hope you like it!


Click here for the brand new recipe


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you and your family on your journey to better health! Please comment if you have any questions.

Aimee

Primal Health Coach for Women

Visit our website: Primal Influence 

Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram + TikTok

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Natural Skincare: Avoiding harmful chemicals for healthier skin + a healthier you

What does ‘natural skincare’ mean to us + why is it even something to consider?

As you’re probably aware, we live in a highly toxic world. Chemical and toxin exposure has a massive impact on our health and well-being; from mucking up our hormones to causing skin problems, allergies, contributing to ASD symptoms, and lowing our immunity.

Some toxins we can’t do much about, while some we definitely can (and should!).

Those we have control over include what we put on our skin; understanding what’s in the products we currently buy and use and becoming more educated to make better buying decisions.

To us, natural skincare is about using natural ingredients, and as few as possible, on our skin (in our mouths, on our heads, every part of our external environment).

It’s not natural for humans to be bombarding our skin and system loads of different ingredients and compounds, when in our most natural existence would we have done that?! Other than clays, dirt, plants, ash, water etc… we weren’t exposing ourselves to anything that wasn’t simple and basic.

Today there are loads of ‘natural’ skincare and beauty products on the market but if you go into a store, have a browse, pick a few items, read the label we can bet you most contain a long list of ingredients, some you won’t even recognise or understand. We know, we’ve been there!

We believe what goes on the skin should be as simple and as minimal as possible and of course, as natural and the least likely to have a negative effect on our health.

๐™ˆ๐™–๐™ ๐™š๐™ช๐™ฅ, ๐™ข๐™ค๐™ž๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ช๐™ง๐™ž๐™จ๐™š๐™ง๐™จ, ๐™ฉ๐™ค๐™ค๐™ฉ๐™๐™ฅ๐™–๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™š, ๐™จ๐™ค๐™–๐™ฅ, ๐™จ๐™๐™–๐™ข๐™ฅ๐™ค๐™ค, ๐™˜๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™™๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™š๐™ง, ๐™ข๐™š๐™™๐™ž๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ก ๐™ง๐™š๐™ข๐™š๐™™๐™ž๐™š๐™จ… ๐™ฉ๐™๐™ž๐™จ ๐™ฌ๐™š๐™š๐™  ๐™ก๐™š๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™™๐™š๐™ก๐™ซ๐™š ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฌ๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ช๐™ง๐™–๐™ก ๐™ค๐™ฅ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™จ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š๐™ง๐™š ๐™–๐™ง๐™š, ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ช๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™™ ๐™—๐™ง๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™๐™จ, ๐™˜๐™๐™š๐™ข๐™ž๐™˜๐™–๐™ก๐™จ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ฎ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™–๐™ซ๐™ค๐™ž๐™™ + ๐™ข๐™ค๐™ง๐™š!

Let’s try to turn around some of societies health issues by choosing healthier skincare products that not only help us and our families but also the environment! โ™ป๏ธ ๐ŸŒ


Natural products we use – DIY and store-bought

๐™ˆ๐™ค๐™ž๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ช๐™ง๐™ž๐™จ๐™š๐™ง:
– I make a really simple tallow moisturiser (recipe coming later this week) which I especially love using in winter on my legs and arms.
– We looooove Ecology Skincare tallow creams because they smell amaaaazing, are so fluffy and luxurious! And so minimal of ingredients which is really important to us. Clint uses this on his face when his skin under his beard, in winter when it gets a bit dry.

๐™ˆ๐™–๐™ ๐™š๐™ช๐™ฅ:
– Clint wears… just kidding! I’m budget-conscious when it comes to cosmetics so even though there are loads of natural options on the market now I don’t buy the high cost products and prefer to stick to affordable brands such as ECO Minerals , MooGoo Makeup , benecos , Nude by Nature + more in the video below.

๐˜พ๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™จ๐™š๐™ง๐™จ/๐™˜๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™š๐™ง๐™จ:
– I use coconut oil soap on my face to get makeup off
– We wash with pure homemade coconut oil soap and I use it to shave legs
– Liquid soaps from Ecostore

๐™๐™š๐™š๐™ฉ๐™/๐™ค๐™ง๐™–๐™ก ๐™๐™ฎ๐™œ๐™ž๐™š๐™ฃ๐™š:
– We brush with handmade pure coconut oil soap (yep, true!) and use a natural whitener from Nourished Life without glycerine (super important)
– Clint tongue scrapes sometimes
– We add bentonite clay to our toothpasty brush every so often and definitely when we feel any signs of decay or teeth problems (very rare but happens occasionally)

๐™ˆ๐™ž๐™จ๐™˜:
– Homemade coffee scrub to exfoliate skin
– Olive oil in my hair to help soften curls and reduce frizz
– Shampoo/conditioner combo bar in the shower or homemade ACV and rosemary tea
– Bites, scrapes, bruises, burns etc… homemade plantain or comfrey balm, aloe vera, manuka honey or tallow cream
– Rosehip PLUS pure rose hip oil for scarring and uneven skin tone
– Perfume is a natural roll-on from One Seed organic perfumery
– Sunscreen: very rarely do we use any and we buy various brands but the one we have at the moment is MooGoo Skin Care

Check out all the natural things Clint and I have in our bathroom.. from makeup, to shampoo, to cleaning and more….


๐Ÿงช What harmful ingredients should we be on the lookout for?

There are many nasty ingredients in common skincare products that can do harm to yours and your kids health and if you want to look into it thoroughly and for links to specific symptoms there are plenty of resources available, we wanted to list a few key players here for you as a go-to reference…

– 1,4-DIOXANE
– PABA
– ETHOXYLATED INGREDIENTS
– HYDROQUINONE
– PETROLATUM, PETROLEUM JELLY
– ETHANOLAMINE COMPOUNDS (MEA, DEA, TEA AND OTHERS)
– COAL TAR
– PHENOXYETHANOL
– CARCINOGENS IN COSMETICS
– NANOMATERIALS
– TALC
– CARBON BLACK
– PARABENS
– FRAGRANCE
– BUTYLATED COMPOUNDS
– FORMALDEHYDE AND FORMALDEHYDE-RELEASING PRESERVATIVES
– BENZOPHENONE & RELATED COMPOUNDS
– ACRYLATES
– MICA
– HOMOSALATE
– LEAD
– METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE AND METHYLCHLOROISOTHIAZOLINONE
– NITROSAMINES

There are A LOT more with a full list and details available via Campaign for Safe Cosmetics

Many of these are known to cause cancer, allergies and an increase in symptoms, disrupt hormones, effect ASD symptoms, impair growth and development of infants, lower immunity, effect pregnant women and more. Some are found in common trusted household brands, they could very well be lurking in your bathroom cupboard right now.

From sunscreen to talc powders, to nail polishes, and makeup and creams… unless the ingredients are listed as 100% natural and safe, preferably organic, the ingredients list is small, and you can get full transparency from a manufacturer of the sources and possible effects then the chances are the products you’re using contain nasty chemicals.

๐™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฉ ๐™ข๐™ค๐™ง๐™š ๐™–๐™ฉ www.safecosmetics.org ๐Ÿงก


๐Ÿงผ ๐Ÿงด Making the transition to using more natural safe skincare products 

There are many ‘natural’ products in many shops these days and as with most things, ‘natural skincare’ has been over-marketed and over-commercialised. Even regular toxic brands now have ‘natural’ items in their range! But how clean are they really?

It can be so confusing and stressful to pick the best options for you and your family!

๐™Š๐™ช๐™ง ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ ๐™›๐™ค๐™ง ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™–๐™ฃ๐™จ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ช๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ช๐™ง๐™–๐™ก ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™˜๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ฃ๐™š๐™ง ๐™จ๐™ ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™™๐™ช๐™˜๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š:

– Use the info in our earlier post to find out what chemicals to look out for and avoid
– Look for certified organic ingredients/products when possible
– Simple is always best! Usually the whole-plant version is far more beneficial than a product made using it and a zillion other ingredients. Less processing, fresher, more of an impact. E.g. aloe vera gel direct from a leaf as opposed to highly processed aloe gel in a bottle on the shelf.
– Again re simple… look for products with short ingredients lists. If you can understand what the ingredients are and there aren’t many of them, that’s a good sign!
– Look into the manufacturers of products you think could be suitable for you and find out their processes, sources etc. If you can get access to all the info and you can then trust them, go for it.
– Choose one item at a time to swap so it’s not overwhelming and expensive. You might want to start with toothpaste for example, or your makeup, or your kids sunscreen. Pick one, find a suitable alternative, pick another, repeat.
– Ask for tips from friends and family who are already into natural alternatives, they may have already done the leg work for you and can give you great info
– Stay within your chosen budget. You don’t have to buy ‘top shelf’ brands, there are plenty of more affordable brands and products to choose from
– DIY. Make your own for as many items as you can, it’s so much cheaper!!


๐ŸงผWe we use soap as toothpaste! 

You read that right! We brush our teeth with actual SOAP! We started many years ago and have never stopped, it’s so good!

Check out this blog post to read all about our experience using soap to clean our teeth.

If you’d like to learn how to make natural soap bars, to brush your teeth with or just use to wash your skin, and you live on or near the Sunshine Coast, feel free to come along to one of our workshops!


I hope this information and our perspectives and experiences help you on your journey to better health! Please comment if you have any questions.

Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaching | Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

Benefits of Barefoot: Your feet are stronger than you think!

Why are we such big fans of being barefoot? Two main reasons.

๐Ÿญ. ๐—ฆ๐˜๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜๐—ต + ๐—ฆ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜†. Not only does the foot benefit from being allowed to strengthen and work as it’s naturally designed, the rest of the body does too. The arch is designed to be super strong and stable but using artificial props and cushioning doesn’t allow it to be as strong as it’s meant to be, nor the ankles, knees, hips, back and neck. Walking and being physically active while barefoot, in a variety of conditions and environments, allows the foot to do it’s thing and therefore benefit the entire body. By using props and cushioning for long periods of time we can actually do harm to our joints, the opposite of why they’re worn!

๐Ÿฎ. ๐—˜๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด. The benefits of earthing are well-known (even by doctors) yet still pretty underrated for the most part. When our feet connect to the earth (rocks, dirt, sand, grass, even concrete works) outside in nature we allow the natural cyclical pulsed negative charge in, balancing out the positive charge created in our body during regular day-to-day activities, which greatly impacts our health.

Strength + Stability: Information from experts

“The feet are a beautifully complex part of the body, with 26 bones, 33 joints, 4 layers of muscle and up to 200,000 nerve endings in each foot! They are our primary point of contact with the ground and so serve as our foundation for both movement and sensation, helping our whole body organise itself and adapt to our environment. This is why it is so important not to disrupt the natural function of the feet – our balance and coordination rely on both the ability to feel the ground and to move in response to the changes we feel! The muscles and joints of the feet also rely on changes in pressure and texture on the ground (for example grass, rocks, sticks, leaves etc. in a natural environment) in order to be healthy.

“our balance and coordination rely on both the ability to feel the ground and to move in response to the changes we feel”

Of course there are times when having some level of protection from the elements (extremes of heat/cold, sharp and/or poisonous things) is very important – this is where footwear can help. Unfortunately modern footwear significantly disrupts natural foot function – layers of cushioning, raised heel, narrow toe box and the rigid body in most shoes (including athletic/running shoes from โ€˜goodโ€™ brands) essentially blindfold the feet and greatly restricts movement. There are now plenty of companies offering โ€˜naturalโ€™ footwear which allow the foot to function as close to barefoot as possible.

Photo from The Foot Collective Australia

So for the health of our feet (and our whole body), one of the best things we can do is spend as much time as possible barefoot, outside and on a variety of natural surfaces! This gives us the chance to build a natural resilience and adaptability that protects us from aches, pains and injuries throughout our lives. If we canโ€™t be barefoot for whatever reason, we need to be wearing shoes that promote the natural function of the feet – this is especially important for young feet that are still developing and are most responsive to challenge and exposure!”

Thanks to James Dooner – Physio + Director of The Foot Collective Australia for this great info!


“For many decades we have been conditioned to believe we need to support our feet with tools such as shoes and orthotics.

But did you know that feet have hundreds of muscles, tendons and ligaments that are more than capable of supporting your feet, whilst optimising your balance and movement performance.

If you have become over reliant and dependant on artificial foot support, I would encourage you to begin rebuilding the strength and connection to your feet rather than masking the dysfunction.” – Paul Thompson The Barefoot Podiatrist

We know from personal experience being barefooters now for close to a decade, we feel a lot stronger all through the body because our feet are strong.

Here’s an interesting story…

A few years ago I did some mystery shopping work and one of the retail stores I had to assess was Athletes Foot. The staff member took me through the process of using the foot print machine to work out my foot structure to then find the right types of shoes for me. When I was finished using the machine he said, sounding very surprised, the results showed my arches were strong and my feet didn’t need any support, just neutral-style joggers. I certainly wasn’t shocked! I knew my feet were strong!


Earthing: What is it and how to get it

Earthing (or grounding) is a process of naturally connecting your body to the Earthโ€™s natural and powerful energy by exposing your bare feet to the ground and natural surfaces. More so grass and dirt but rocks and sand work and even concrete allows some earthing energy through.


Basically it reduces oxidative stress in the body and promotes healing.

The main benefits it can have to our health are:

– improve quality of sleep

– reduce inflammation in the body

– boost immunity and reduce infection

– reduce stress and promote calmness

– promote healing and reduce pain and injury severity

– increase energy level

– improve blood circulation and heart health

How to get earthed when outdoors, indoors, and wearing shoes:

Obviously, the best way to get earthing is to spend time barefoot outdoors on natural surfaces, in particular on grass and dirt, but also on rocks, sand and even concrete work too (not bitumen though). The longer we’re barefoot outside the more benefits we receive and for a longer period.

Clint and I live in a townhouse with a concrete paved courtyard and as I work on a computer indoors most of the time, I can feel it drain me of energy so I make time in the afternoons (on fine days) to take my laptop outside to work, with my feet on the ground. I definitely feel better from it and even find I crave it most days.

Earthing while indoors:

There is such a thing! By using earthing products! We’ve been big fans of earthing bed sheets and foot mats for many years and always recommend them to our clients, especially those who simply can’t get much outdoor barefoot time in their day or week. There’s a huge variety of indoor earthing products to choose from and lots of information and scientific info to be educated on and to back-up the claims that they actually do work.

Personally we use and recommend EarthingOz products – feel free to use our affiliate link to check out what they offer and grab something for yourself and/or your family members.

My mum used to live in a unit with no access to outdoor barefoot time. She didn’t have a yard or a nice park nearby, she wore shoes to walk to the bus to work in the city in an office most days and wore shoes on her days off. She started using a foot mat while watching TV and reading, and a sheet on her bed at night, and reported she noticed definite improvements to her quality of sleep.

Wearing shoes and earthing:

The only way to get earthing while wearing shoes is to wear shoes with copper plates in the soles that touch the foot and the ground at the same time. Not many companies make these one but that does, Earth Runners, have a variety of sandals and even shoe kits to turn your regular shoes into earthing shoes, as long as you don’t mind making a permanent hole in the soles!

Check out my latest blog post and honest Earth Runners review and style comparison here (with a link to my previous review too).

I wear my Earth Runner sandals ALL the time, I absolutely love them and I’ll be a forever fan of them I’m sure. They’re a great shoe for protecting my soles and allowing me to get grounding at the same time.


How to transition to barefoot:

  • Start slow if you’re not already moving around outdoors with no shoes on. Start on ‘easy’ surfaces and build up. Even a walk on soft sand at the beach, for newbies, can be incredibly harsh on the foot and leg muscles and bring on soreness and tension that can last for days. It can help to take the shoes off and walk/move for short periods, put the shoes back on when needed, and build up to longer periods barefoot over time. If you’re rarely ever barefoot at the moment then start with being barefoot inside the house – that’s level 1!
  • Utilise your home outdoor ground spaces even if there’s concrete. Instead of slipping the shoes on to hang the washing up outside, do it barefoot. Walk to the letterbox and take the bins out without shoes on. Sit outside barefoot to eat meals and have a cuppa. Do some gardening and maintenance without shoes on too.
  • Find nearby barefoot-friendly nature spaces such as beaches, parks and playgrounds to take the kids to barefoot, walks to go on (walk off the path to get far more earthing), to play outdoor games at without shoes on… without prickles and spikey seed pods which are common in Australia!
Barefoot beach walks – great for strength, stability and earthing
  • Try out bushwalking without shoes on for even some of the time, if not all. Depending on where you live and what tracks you have access to, some tracks might be ‘man made’ and too hard underfoot but the natural paths are a great place to start becoming used to being barefoot and getting lots of earthing. Take your usual walking shoes but spend some some not wearing them, get your feet used to the different surfaces and textures, putting the shoes back on when you need to.
  • Wear ‘barefoot’ shoes such as Earth Runners or Vibram Five Fingers (aka toe shoes). Or choose from one of about a zillion other brands now on the market! From office shoes to snow boots, to casual laced shoes, there are so many options now to suit most lifestyles and work situations. Starting out by swapping regular joggers/athletic shoes to Dunlop Volley’s is a great option because they’re flat, wide, affordable and long-lasting. My pair were about $25 which was a nice change from the $180+ I used to spend on Asics and all the other fancy unnecessary joggers I wore for years.
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is vibram.jpg
My Vibram Five Finger shoes I wear as my ‘uniform’ and sometimes out walking – they allow my toes to spread naturally and my arches to do the job they’re designed to do
  • Use good foot health practices such as rolling on a plastic spikey ball at night while watching TV to help loosen up the muscles and tendons in the feet (watch this video of Clint demo’ing how to do it), soak your feet in warm Epsom or Magnesium Flake foot baths regularly, and wear toe spreaders to help correct your toe alignment (our toes are meant to measure wider than the rest of our foot by the way!).
  • Practice natural movement by looking into MovNat, finding MovNat, CHEK and other holistic movement practitioners and programs online or in your area. We’re huge fans of MovNat, Clint’s a certified trainer, and we love that they promote barefoot and natural movement together (indoors and outdoors).
Clint doing some natural movement in the trees – walking, balancing, split squats, turning etc while barefoot for better stability
  • Get advice from a barefoot practitioner such as a podiatrist or physio who specialise in and promote barefoot living.
  • Stop listening to conventional wisdom and believing clever marketing telling us we need expensive joggers, arch support and pointy toe shoes for fashion. We don’t. We can heal and strengthen our feet without any of that.

I wish you all the best on your barefoot-more journey! If you have any questions please get in touch!

Aimee

Natural Fitness + Lifestyle Coaching | Visit our website: Primal Influence | Follow us on socials: Facebook + Instagram

Disclaimer:

This disclaimer governs your use of Under the Primal Influence Blog. By using this website, you accept this disclaimer in full. If you disagree with any part of this disclaimer, do not use Under the Primal Influence Blog or any affiliated websites, properties, or companies. We reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. You should therefore check back periodically for changes. By using this website after we post any changes, you agree to accept those changes, whether or not you have reviewed them.

All information and resources found on Under the Primal Influence Blog are based on the opinions of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to motivate readers to make their own nutrition and health decisions after consulting with their health care provider. I am not a doctor, lawyer, psychiatrist, therapist, or your mother, and I donโ€™t play one on the internet.

The author of this site encourages you to consult a doctor before making any health changes, especially any changes related to a specific diagnosis or condition. No information on this site should be relied upon to determine diet, make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.

None of the posts and articles on Under the Primal Influence Blog may be re-printed without express written permission of the author. Primal Influence will respond to written requests to re-print parts of posts and excerpts/quotes (10% or less) may be reprinted with attribution as long as all links are left intact.

7 years + 3 different pairs: my overall EarthRunners review with style comparisons

If you’re already a barefooter or minimalist shoe wearer you’ll appreciate the importance of finding the right one, or various few, barefoot-style shoes that not only feel comfy but also last. If you’re totally new to the concept, here you’ll find an honest review of one of the longest running (pun intended!) barefoot shoes on the market and possibly some inspiration to venture into barefoot movement.

When I first transitioned from regular joggers to a more minimalist style of shoe there were hardly any brands to choose from. Now… there are loads! Brands, styles, colours, for a huge variety of uses. From sandals to snow boots and everything in between.

My first flat sole shoe was the good ol’ Dunlop Volleys! They had a reasonably wide toe box, a flat sole, were a bit bendy and definitely good quality. I wore them on long walks and while exercising, for a fair few months, which allowed my body to get used to far less padding and cushioning.

I then spent a lot more time walking and moving barefoot (at home, at parks, even at the shops sometimes) to get my feet and body stronger and more stable, and to toughen my feet up. I even started barefoot bushwalks with gravel and rock surfaces to really allow my feet to adapt to a large variety of natural surfaces and become more comfortable.

But, as I mention in my last two blog posts about going barefoot, there are situations and environments that going barefoot just isn’t do-able and I had to find a ‘barefoot’ shoe option. I chose to try EarthRunners sandals way back 7 years ago, and have been a fan ever since!

I’ve tried the three different soles they offer and different laces over those years so I want to share my honest experiences and recommendations.

In the last barefoot blog I posted with a review I had tried one thickness of sole with 100% leather laces and since then have tried two other soles, and nylon laces.

My first pair has the Circadian sole with full leather laces (which no longer exist), and multiple copper discs in the sole. The second pair had the Elemental sole style without the moisture-wicking cotton on top, with nylon laces. My current pair are the Alpha sole style and leather conductive laces. The company stopped adding multiple copper discs at one point, and realised one was enough, with conductive stitching on the laces. So the second and third pairs just had one copper disc underneath each sole, and conductive laces as opposed to 100% leather.


3 x Style Reviews

Circadian Review

Positives:

  • The sole thickness suited me well, I liked minimal material between my foot and the ground, especially for rock-hopping, balancing etc, I need my feet to grip to the surfaces as much as possible.
  • The original all-leather laces were so comfy, I loved them!
  • The moisture wicking layer underfoot was great and helped prevent my feet slipping and sliding around inside the sandal when wet

Negatives:

  • The moisture wicking wore off before the soles wore through, which made them a little slippery at that point, when wearing in wet conditions
Thickness of sole

Elemental Review

Positives:

  • The same sole thickness as the Circadian

Negatives:

  • All-nylon laces were definitely not as comfortable as the leather – they didn’t squish up and soften enough between my big and second toes and never felt quite as comfortable over the few years I wore them
  • Not having the moisture-wicking material was a downside, as I felt it provided more grip and comfort with my previous pair of sandals
Similar thickness to the first pair

Alpha Review

Positives:

  • The thicker sole may last longer than the other two pairs and not need replacing as soon (why I chose them this time around)
  • The moisture wicking fabric
  • I paid extra to get the new style of leather laces which has conductive stitching on top but leather touching the skin and I’m glad I did because, while not as mouldable and comfy as the original all-leather version, they’re much more comfortable than the completely nylon option

Negatives:

  • The sole is too thick for me. When I first started walking in them I actually felt higher up in them, I could really feel the height difference compared to the thinner soles! I’m used to that now, but when walking on rocks, balancing etc they don’t mould to my feet quite enough or allow for enough ‘feeling’ to what’s under my feet. I miss being able to feel more texture underfoot for sure
Much thicker sole

My overall verdict + style recommendation

I prefer the thinner soles, and even though the Alpha soles may last longer, it’s not worth it to me. Especially seeing as the thinner soles lasted me many years each, while wearing them MOST days and mostly on bitumen and rough natural surfaces! I believe Alpha is a good ‘beginner’ sole because it provides more cushioning. But for someone who needs to feel more and grip better with the surfaces they’re moving on and who’s feet are reasonably used to ‘barefoot’, the Circadian and Elemental are more suitable.

I suggest spending a few extra $ for the leather laces too, they are far more comfortable between the toes and even on the skin on the other parts of the foot. They do stretch a little when wet but the clip is so easy to adjust that that’s not a problem. The leather also look a little ‘nicer’ than the nylon laces, maybe not as a relaxed look about them, so fashion-wise leather could be a better option for those conscious of that!

Each pair moulds easily to the shape of the feet and lets them move quite freely but Alpha definitely don’t mould as much as fast. I can see that with their thickness and how I use them they’ll wear and thin out in certain spots underneath while the rest will stay pretty thick.

They take the shape of the foot which is how it should be

All styles are quick to get on and off. The clips, made of plastic, can break, especially if you’re adjusting the laces a lot (but the makers will send you a replacement pair pretty quickly). I generally keep mine done-up at the same spot all the time and just slip them on and off my feet, only opening the clips for when the laces get wet, a little loose, I have to tighten them slightly to be secure enough for what I’m doing, and then I need to loosen them off a bit when they dry. Other than that I don’t touch the clips.

These shoes can take a lot of beating up! I’ve put them through their paces on bushwalks (on and off tracks) with really rough surfaces, in cold conditions, in water (fresh and salt), while playing and being really active outdoors, for many days in a row while camping, walking on sharp seed pods and, of course, mostly wear them on rough bitumen roads!

I love that I’m getting the benefits of earthing while wearing shoes and protecting my feet against prickles, broken glass and any other hazards at the same time!

After 7 years and three pairs, I’m still a massive fan of EarthRunner sandals and am definitely a forever customer!

I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to become more of a barefooter or current barefooters who want a sandal that allows for grounding while being worn.

If you’re new to being barefoot, keep in mind your toe box will widen so when choosing a size ensure you account for that in terms of the width of the sandal.

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If you decide to grab a pair please use our affiliate link, it provides us with a small referral fee and lets the manufacturers know where you came to them from ๐Ÿ™‚

Aimee

Primal Health Coach

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