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

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

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โ˜€๏ธ Sunshine: the many health benefits + how to get more of it

We’re sun advocates

You may know by now we’re big advocates of regular direct sun exposure for kids and adults, and this week we’re delving into exactly why that is, how the sun has helped us, how we get it, how you can too, and the many many MANY benefits of doing so.


There’s a long list of benefits of getting sun time throughout the day but here’s a general overview of the main benefits:

– boosts immunity

– lowers risk of various cancers including skin cancer (yep true story!)

– improves gut health

– enhances eye sight- improves sleep- balances hormones

– helps reduce depression symptoms

– strengthens bones and teeth

+ more!


It’s a big post of hopefully very helpful info and inspiration! We hope you get a lot out of this one.


๐—ช๐—ฒ ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ท๐˜‚๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ฉ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐——-๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ

Sunlight exposure, direct on our skin and in our eyes, at different times of the day is super important. We used to think it was enough to sit outside near the middle of the day for a while to get Vitamin D time but have since learnt that’s far from enough, we actually need sunrise and late afternoon sunlight too. Interesting ey?!


๐™€๐™–๐™ง๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™ข๐™ค๐™ง๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™ฃ:

Sunrise light turns on our ‘get up and go’ hormones and the low UV-B doesn’t allow for skin to tan/burn but actually gets the skin ready for higher UV-B later on in the day when there’s Vitamin D available from the sun. The UV-A sun helps strengthen and enhance the skin! The light in the first few hours of the day helps regulate the circadian rhythm, which helps the body produce melatonin naturally at night time, improving sleep quality.


๐™ˆ๐™ž๐™™๐™™๐™–๐™ฎ ๐™‘๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™–๐™ข๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐˜ฟ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™ฃ:

Later in the morning Vitamin D becomes available and increases in strength until solar noon arrives then decreases over the course of the afternoon as the light continues to change. This window is when we can access crucial Vitamin D, which some prefer to call a ‘hormone’ rather than a ‘vitamin’. D is available in some foods and in supplement form but best sourced direct from the sun through eyes and skin. D from any other source can be over-done whereas the human body can self-regulate D from the sun and utilise it appropriately. The human body is amazing! When we say the skin absorbs it, just getting it on arms and legs isn’t enough, the genital areas in particular need a regular dose of direct D.


๐™‡๐™–๐™ฉ๐™š ๐™–๐™›๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ง๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™ก๐™ž๐™œ๐™๐™ฉ:

“In the late afternoon, infra-red light acts to help repair damage to skin that has been overexposed to UV rays at solar noon.” – Dr Jack Kruse

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is sun-regen-e1559687631184.jpg


So yeah, we kinda need to be outdoors A LOT! Our ancestors didn’t to make an effort to do so like most of us do today (I’m sitting outside using my laptop as I type this), it was their way of life. But today we lead such an indoor lifestyle it can be hard to get outside often to utilise the sun for health.


๐—š๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐˜€๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ ๐—ฏ๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฟ๐—ต๐˜†๐˜๐—ต๐—บ

This biological rhythm inside the body is connected with the day and night cycles of the day.


According to this published study from MIT, hereโ€™s why the circadian rhythm is important:


“Studies in animals have found that when circadian rhythm is thrown off, health problems including obesity and metabolic disorders such as diabetes can arise. People who work night shifts have an increased susceptibility to obesity and diabetes. Researchers at MIT have also discovered a link between a disruption in circadian cycles and aging.
Just about everything that takes place physiologically is really staged along the circadian cycle,โ€ Leonard Guarente senior author of the paper says. โ€œWhatโ€™s now emerging is the idea that maintaining the circadian cycle is quite important in health maintenance, and if it gets broken, thereโ€™s a penalty to be paid in health and perhaps in aging.โ€
The body naturally synchs itself with the rise and setting of the sun and light cycles of the earth.


Living in the modern indoor world certainly has itโ€™s benefits, but one of the biggest downside is the negative effect itโ€™s having on sleep patterns.


The circadian rhythm is basically a 24-hour internal clock which runs in the background of the brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals.


In short, itโ€™s our sleep/wake cycle.


A part of the hypothalamus (part of the brain) controls the circadian rhythm but outside factors like lightness and darkness also play a big role.


When it becomes light in the morning, the body receives a signal that itโ€™s time to wake up, be alert and active.
When itโ€™s dark at night, your eyes send a signal to the hypothalamus that itโ€™s time to feel tired. Your brain, in turn, sends a signal to your body to release melatonin, which makes your body tired.


Thatโ€™s why your circadian rhythm tends to coincide with the cycle of day and night time.


โ˜€๏ธ By exposing the body to sunlight at different times of the day we can balance the circadian rhythm and improve sleep. Blue light blocking at night helps too but that’s a topic for another day!


๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป-๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜

Being outdoors in the sunshine at various times of the day is great, it’s a start, but there are lots of unobvious ways we could be missing out on the benefits, even hindering them and making the sun-time unhealthy! Eek!


๐™๐™Š๐™Š๐˜ฟ

By eating crappy processed plant-based oils (canola, veg oil, conventional olive oil and variations etc) and junk foods we cause inflammation in the body and can actually ‘burn’ the skin from the inside out when we’re in the sun. You could be the most dedicated sunbather but if you’re eating junk then you’re possibly doing more harm to your skin than if you stayed indoors more often.


A paleo-based nutrition approach and consuming quality animal fats is much better when you’re spending time in the sun.


๐™Ž๐™๐™‰๐™‰๐™„๐™€๐™Ž

One of the best absorbers of nutrients from the sun is our eyes. When we cover them up with sunglasses (and even hats that shade our eyes) we miss out on the goodness the sun gives, and can even do harm to our eyesight.
Wearing sunglasses when spending prolonged periods outdoors is smart but generally we need at least 20 mins a day (each, at sunrise then midday and then late afternoon) letting the sun enter our eyes.


๐™Ž๐™๐™‰๐™Ž๐˜พ๐™๐™€๐™€๐™‰

Even natural sunscreen blocks a lot of the goodness, but chemical sunscreens are worse because they can contribute to skin cancers and have a lot of other health problems associated. Wearing chem-free sunscreen when being outside for long periods of time is a good idea and depending on your skin type, but most of us can build up sun tolerance and not burn or receive damage when we go sunscreen-free, we’ll talk more about this later.


๐˜พ๐™‡๐™Š๐™๐™ƒ๐™„๐™‰๐™‚

Naked sun time is by the far the best way to get the benefits from sunshine but that’s not possible for everyone to do! The less clothing the better though. And building up the skin’s tolerance over time.


๐™’๐˜ผ๐™๐™€๐™

Vitamin D is actually water soluble and can wash off of our skin when we’re swimming and scrubbing after a beach session. Swim/shower before a sunbaking session for maximum results.


๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ด๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต + ๐—ฉ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—— ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ธ

“Could sunlight be the fastest way to tune your gut health? The way your body forms your immune response is fascinating.


It’s bacteria that live amongst the lungs, participate in oxygen respiration, and regulate the immune system with the gut.


Previously I’ve posted how vitamin D directly regulates the airway via the lung microbiome, but letโ€™s look further into the light-microbe connection.


Sunlight exposure changes the human gut microbiome, specifically in people who are vitamin D-deficient. Research has revealed a protective effect of UVB against inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis or inflammatory bowel disease.


That is UV light, entering your skin, changing. If you get enough sunlight and have other digestive or hormonal imbalances, your vitamin D levels may not rise.


Inflammatory lung conditions like asthma relate to low vitamin D. Bleeding gums and gum disease relate to low vitamin D. IBS, Crohnโ€™s and chronic digestive disorders? All underlie vitamin D.


There is a lot more to UV light, immune and gut microbe changes. Disease causing bacteria were found to decrease with higher exposure to sunlight.


A 2020 study concluded: โ€œhuman lifestyle concerning sunlight exposure should be considered as one force modulating the gut microbiome, highlighting, as proposed by Bosman et al, a novel skin-gut axis which is associated with health and disease.โ€ Hereโ€™s a summary: Your body absorbs UV light and creates an anti-bacterial or anti-viral infection in response to the environment.


TIP: Try exposing the belly button to sunlight to get direct exposure through where we absorb nutrients the umbilical cord.” – Dr Steven Lin


Amazing info! Does this inspire you to get a bit more D time in your day?


๐—ง๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐˜€: ๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป ๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐˜†

As you now know, direct sunlight on our skin and in our eyes, at various times of the day, as often as possible is super important for our health. But how the heck is that do-able when life is so busy and we’re indoors so much?


Hopefully these tips help you…


๐™€๐™–๐™ง๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™ฃ ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ข๐™š

  • Have your brekkie or morning cuppa outside instead of at the dining table or in front of the TV
  • Go for walks, do exercise/play, bike rides etc outside in the mornings as close to sunrise as possible
  • If you go to work really early try to make some of the travel time outside in the sunlight (e.g. get off the bus early or get on it later, ride to work instead etc)
  • Move your indoor morning ritual (meditating, brekkie, computer time etc) to outside when the weather allows


๐™‘๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™–๐™ข๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐˜ฟ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™ฃ ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ข๐™š

  • Use the D Minder app to tell you when Vitamin D is present where you live (e.g. at the moment it’s from about 8:30am here on the Sunshine Coast, QLD) and plan your day around getting outside in that window. It could be that your morning break is outside in the sun or you have your lunch outside then.
  • If you work/study from home this is much easier to do, get outside with as little clothing on as possible for as long as possible in the D part of the day. Sunbake and listen to podcasts, music etc, meditate, work (if you can see the screen!), take calls outside etc.
  • Move business meetings and social catch-ups to outdoor locations in the sunshine and encourage other attendees to wear clothes that can be reduces for max sun exposure
  • If your workplace has a private outdoor area with sun exposure utilise it and encourage others to do the same!
  • Take breaks at a local park where you can get at least half your body in the sun for 20+ mins
Lunch outside in the sun is such a nice way to break up a busy working indoors day


๐—Ÿ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป ๐˜๐—ถ๐—บ๐—ฒ

  • Exercise/walk late afternoon outside- Sit outside to meditate
  • Try to be outside for some of your trip home from work/college
  • Sit outside for afternoon tea/early dinners when the weather is nice
  • Do gardening late afternoon


Good luck getting more sun time + remember… no sunnies on if possible!


๐—Ÿ๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ฉ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—— ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐—ถ๐—น๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜€

“Vitamin D deficiency was present in patients with recurrent tonsillitis and might be associated with an increase in the risk of recurrent tonsillitis. There is a need to explore these findings via clinical trials based on large populations.”


That was the conclusion given in a Otolaryngologyโ€“Head and Neck Surgery study on The Association Between Vitamin D Deficiency and Recurrent Tonsillitis: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis and it poses the question… why don’t doctors look for and treat Vitamin D deficiency before opting for tonsil removal?


Low Vitamin D also contributes to low immune function, so gut and throat problems are likely as a result. I used to get tonsillitis often as toddler and I found out later in life I probably had a pretty crappy immune system at the time.


โ˜€๏ธ ๐™‡๐™š๐™ฉ’๐™จ ๐™ฉ๐™–๐™ ๐™š ๐™– ๐™’๐™ƒ๐™Š๐™‡๐™€-๐™ž๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™˜ ๐™–๐™ฅ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™–๐™˜๐™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง๐™จ ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™›๐™–๐™ข๐™ž๐™ก๐™ฎ’๐™จ ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ก๐™ฉ๐™!


๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ต + ๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜€

It’s truly amazing how that big bright yellow thing up in the sky can do so much good for our health!


Again Dr Steven Lin has some brilliant info on the topic… “Sunlight absorbed through your skin is a remarkable energy transformation. Your body uses sunlight energy to convert it to frozen energy of the strength of your skeletal system. Thatโ€™s light energy transferred to a metal structure.


Your bones are a mix of phosphorous, calcium and oxygen – that grows in hexagonal crystals. Pure hydroxyapatite is white in color. It makes up most of the human bone structure, builds tooth enamel, and collects in tiny amounts in part of the brain. The hexagonal structure is a pattern made in nature, that gives the bone incredible strength.


That energy holds and protects your organs. Vitamin D is mainly involved in the regulation of calcium and phosphorus metabolism and, consequently, in the processes of bone growth and mineralization. It is a known cause of the skeletal diseases osteoporosis (loss of bone density in old age) and rickets (improper bone formation in kids).


Vitamin D primarily from sun exposure and dietary intake, but the majority is synthesized to a pre-hormone in the skin which is converted into (pre-D3). Itโ€™s UVB light (midday sun) that ultimately forms cholecalciferol (vitamin D3). Then the active hormone is activated by the liver and secondly the kidneys until it reaches its active form (1,25(OH)D). Active vitamin D then acts on vitamin D receptors (VDR) across the body that regulates between 2-3000 genes.


Vitamin D levels in the body stimulate calcium absorption from the digestive system.


If you are vitamin D deficient you only absorb 15% of any dietary calcium you ingest. Absorbed calcium is primarily used for mineralization of bone. However, a secondary effect include VDRs located on bone-making cells (osteoblasts) that drives bone formation.


You absorb sunlight and converts UV energy into a biological hormone. That hormone tells and directs your body to efficiently use the metal calcium to form your bones and teeth. Are you amazed by life as I am?”


WE ARE!!


Bonus extra info:
Why sunscreen is more harmful than helpful ๐Ÿงด – article by Weston A Price


๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป-๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฑ

It’s not a good idea to start sunbaking for long periods of time daily to get Vitamin D without understanding a few important factors first, and there’s a smart way of going about upping sun-time.


When we first started getting more D we didn’t do it properly. We only got middle of the day sun time most days, for a couple years, because we weren’t aware of the role of sunrise and late afternoon sunlight exposure. Oops! BUT we definitely got a tonne of benefit from all that Vitamin D time, without a doubt our health improved.


Had we been getting sunrise time it would have been better but to generally adapt to D sun time we basically started off slowly in the cooler time of the year. We started naked sunbaking in autumn in SEQ using an app called D Minder so we could track how much D we were getting, and if even tells you how much time you need to spend outdoors, when to turn over etc, it’s pretty good. We started out with short sunbaking sessions and built up to longer over time.


In winter we need like 1.5hours of D time (woah!) because the level of Vitamin D is lower during that time of the year, but we could rarely spend that long outside nor did we start trying to. We started with probably 20 mins and increased that slowly, to around max 1hr as that’s all we had time for. On a cruisy day I might have gotten a bit more but 1hr a day was pretty good. I think I averaged about 45 mins most days.


When we started we didn’t have privacy in the courtyard but a balcony on the other side of our townhouse had privacy and sun shining on it at the right time of day so we moved the sun lounge up there, covered over the spots people down below could look up and see us and made that our sunbaking spot. When we moved to another townhouse we made sure we found somewhere with a private courtyard so now we can sunbake in the nude without any worry.
Clint and I have different skin tones. I’m the yellow tone, while he’s pink. This means he burn easier than I do so it was important for him to sun adapt at his own rate, not the same as me.


Over time I noticed I could be outside in the sunshine for longer periods without my skin becoming red and even longer before any sunburn was happening. One day we went kayaking and fishing on the river for a few hours and I remember I did burn and peel because I didn’t wear any natural sunscreen, but it was about 3 hours or so, whereas previously it would have been around an hour.


It also took time to get used to sitting in direct sun which can feel hot and draining. We adapted to that over time, got more used to it. Clint was born in Rocky so he loves the heat but he hates just lying in direct sun feeling hot not actually doing anything, he tends to feel the heat quicker. But by spending more and more time doing so he got more used to it and adapted. He still can’t spend as much time sunbaking as I can but that’s because we have different skin types and levels of tolerance.


In summer time we tend to get outside much earlier when the D is strong enough but the sun isn’t as hot. Some days in summer we’re only sunbaking for 20 mins before it’s just too hot compared to winter when 1hr feels super easy!
For prolonged periods of no D time (rainy season, too busy to sunbake etc) I find my tolerance reduces a bit and I have to build it back up but it’s easier to do then initially because I’m more sun-adapted than I was to start with.


If you listen to this amazing podcast it’ll educate you a lot about the effects of sun on our skin, myths around sunburn and loads more but keep in mind sunrise and late afternoon sunlight time is really important as well, not just the midday D sun.


I definitely have a lot more freckles since sunbaking more often but I eat pretty clean, I spend a lot more time now getting sunrise and late afternoon sun on my skin and in my eyes, I’ll definitely monitor my skin health but I’m pretty confident I’ll be fine, and if I did get a skin cancer I think it’d mostly caused from all the years I ate crap, covered myself in chemical sunscreen any time I was outside for 10mins or more, and wore sunglasses.


It’s autumn in Australia, which might mean it’s a good time for you to start sun-adapting.


๐ŸŒง๏ธ ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ’๐˜€ ๐—ป๐—ผ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ป! ๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ ๐—œ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜ ๐—ฉ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐——?

(or you’re just too busy to get outside in the sunshine!)


We’ve just gone through a prolonged period of mostly rainy days, lots of cloudy periods and almost no sun. It was awful! When you’re a nature lover and sun addict it’s hard to go weeks and weeks without much sunshine! Motivation levels are low, immunity drops, it’s not a fun time. I definitely noticed my immune system suffered, I got a bit of a bug for about 3 days after this sun-free period, but luckily because I look after myself pretty well, it was a short-lived thing and I was over it quickly.


But what can we do to keep our immunity, energy and mood up when the sun’s not around for a while or life simply gets in the way and we can’t sit outside for D-time for long periods?


Dr Chris Kresser suggests a few ways to get a boost of D in sun-droughts…


“take 1 tsp./day of high-vitamin cod liver oil to ensure adequate vitamin A & D intake.
Eat vitamin D-rich foods such as herring, duck eggs, bluefin tuna, trout, eel, mackerel, sardines, chicken eggs, beef liver and pork.


Make sure to eat enough vitamin K. Primary sources in the diet are natto, hard and soft cheeses, egg yolks, sauerkraut, butter and other fermented foods. Make sure to choose dairy products from grass-fed animals if possible.”


We personally take Green Pastured fermented cod liver oil with ghee (see our video here for info on this), more so in the times of the year we’re not getting much sun, less so when we’re sunbaking often because there is such as thing as TOO MUCH VITAMIN D! The D we get from the sun self-regulates in the body, the D we get elsewhere doesn’t.


We also like to make super easy tinned wild-caught salmon and sardine patties, plus we eat pastured eggs daily.


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

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

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๐—ฅ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด + ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€

Roughhousing. Horseplay. Wrastling. Whatever you call it, itโ€™s one of the best things about being a dad or uncle. I’ve always loved chasing the niece and nephews around the house or yard, picking them up and putting them on my shoulder to run around, shoving each other, wrestling on the ground.. I especially like doing it with the kids I work with. I enjoyed doing it with my dad and siblings as a kid, I now see the benefits it had on us and see how much fun kids I do it with have. They absolutely love it!

Unfortunately, in recent years, roughhousing and rough play in general has gotten a bad rap and is often avoided in the family home and in schools. Parents, concerned about safety and preventing ADHD, limit the amount of rambunctious play their kids participate in, and it’s certainly not acceptable behaviour in schools.

“Research has shown that roughhousing serves an evolutionary purpose and actually provides a myriad of benefits for our progeny. In their book The Art of Roughhousing, Anthony DeBenedet and Larry Cohen highlight a few of these benefits and the research behind them. Instead of teaching kids to be violent and impulsive, DeBenedet and Cohen boldly claim that roughhousing โ€œmakes kids smart, emotionally intelligent, lovable and likable, ethical, physically fit, and joyful.โ€ In short, roughhousing makes your kid awesome.”


๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด + ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜†?

Roughhousing and rough-and-tumble play are when children do things like climb over each other and other people, they wrestle, roll around and even play fight.

Rough play is a basic human instinct that helps children develop many skills โ€“ but mostly children like this kind of play because itโ€™s fun!

I roughhouse a lot with my nephews (my niece and I used to, but she’s in high school now so that’s not her ‘thing’ anymore lol) and with some kids I work with. As an adult who’s stronger and smarter (I think?!) I can regulate and moderate the rough play to keep it as safe as possible while allowing as much benefit as possible. This isn’t so easy for parents today because it’s really a dying practice in modern households, often a male isn’t around often to do it confidently with kids, and kids today have more challenges in terms of ASD sensitivities and behavioural issues.

But we need to bring back rough play for kids, it needs to be a normal part of growing up again, not just for boys and dads/uncles but for girls and even mums!


๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐˜๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด + ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ต๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€

There’s a story further down of a really wonderful example but generally I see incredible benefit with the kids I rough house with; physically for sure but emotionally more so. The confidence they get from it is incredible.
Here are some expert reasons why rough play is so good for kids…

“Roughhousing is essential for kids. Laughter transforms the body chemistry to reduce stress hormones and reduce anxiety. Laughter creates more oxytocin, the bonding hormone, so when children laugh with another person, it strengthens that relationship. Physical movement helps work out emotion and is essential for brain development.
Roughhousing even builds self esteem, as children experience their own physical strength — especially for kids who are less assertive, or smaller than other kids their age.

And like other young mammals, when kids “play” fight, they learn to manage aggression, which makes them less likely to lash out when they’re angry. ” – Aha! Parenting

And benefits listed on the Essential Kids website include:

“Physical play teaches kids about morality, right and wrong, and following rules. Roughhousing helps kids learn to take risks and boosts resilience.

Roughhousing makes kids smarter.

Physical play builds children’s – especially girls’ – confidence, assertiveness, academic achievement, and increases the chances that they’ll stand up for their friends.

Roughhousing is great exercise.

Lack of rough-and-tumble play is associated with negative developmental, emotional, and physical problems”

๐˜ฟ๐™ค ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™ ๐™ž๐™™๐™จ ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ช๐™œ๐™ ๐™๐™ค๐™ช๐™จ๐™š?

๐—–๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—น๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐˜€ + ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€ ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต ๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด

Will letting my kids play fight lead to violent acts later in life?

What if they really hurt each other?

I’m a single mum, I just don’t know how to rough house with my kids.

And if I do, what if they hurt me?

My child doesn’t want to do any form of rough play even though I encourage it.

If my kids wrestle at home will they be likely to try it with other kids unsafely?

My child is on the spectrum and doesn’t have the same level of empathy and social understanding as many other kids.

My child on the spectrum isn’t as confident or physically developed as many other kids, how can rough play be good for them? Or how do I get them into it safely?

There’s no male around to rough house with my kids.

…….

These are some of many common questions, concerns and challenges parents today face with the concept of rough play for kids. I work with ASD children at varying levels of physical ability, emotional awareness and energy levels. I notice a lot of them get over energetic when we play and wrestle and don’t want to stop, some are just not confident initially and need a lot of support and guidance to help them become comfortable giving it a go, some are low in energy and fitness and give it a go but tire out really quickly, others just have very limited understanding of how to do it but are keen to try.

Many families today are split so dad-time is limited, the men in kids’ lives simply don’t rough plat or there just isn’t a male role model around to do the rougher type play with kids. It’s not natural for mums and other older female family members to rough play; they might have done it when they were kids but it’s not a natural instinct as women age. It’s traditionally and genetically not the main role of women either, it’s generally ‘men’s business’. But not so much today.

๐™‡๐™š๐™ฉ ๐™ข๐™š ๐™ ๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™ฌ๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™—๐™ž๐™œ๐™œ๐™š๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™˜๐™๐™–๐™ก๐™ก๐™š๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™š๐™จ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ ๐™œ๐™š๐™ฉ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ค๐™ง ๐™ก๐™š๐™ฉ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™ ๐™ž๐™™๐™จ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ช๐™œ๐™ ๐™๐™ค๐™ช๐™จ๐™š.


๐—œ ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐˜๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜† about confidence

This isn’t the day it happened but the girl in the photo, Grace, came to my first ever kids class maaaaany years ago, all shy and quiet. I hadn’t met her before and didn’t know she had low confidence and self-esteem, and often felt overpowered by her older sister.

During class we played one of my favourite roughplay games Bull in the Ring where I drew a circle in the sand and everyone jumped in and had to try and push each other out, to be the last one inside the ring. Pushing, shoving, pulling, by whatever means necessary (with obvious safety rules and guidance of course!). It was a lot of fun.

A couple years later, when these photos were taken, Grace’s mum was chatting to Aimee while I played Hip Tiggy with Grace and mentioned how when she got home after that first kids class she was “like a different kid” with an air of confidence about her her parents hadn’t seen before.

Aimee was amazed and told me about it later. I remembered the class and the game of Bull in the Ring and how I had ensured Grace actually won a couple of games against me and other kids to try and make her feel good about herself. And it apparently worked and had a long-lasting effect!

Being an adult who can easily steer a roughplay session and who wins and loses is very handy. It can help the over-cocky kids learn that losing is part of life and that they can cope when they lose. And helps super shy and low confidence kids realise their potential and feel good about themselves and their abilities.

It’s something I’m very aware of with every child I work with, 1;1 or in group situations and it’s something parents and educators can be aware of and utilise when appropriate.

Do you have a shy child who could benefit from a rough play win?


๐—š๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐—น๐˜€ (+ ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป!) ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต ๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ผ๐—ผ!

From Aimee:

Here’s a story about me (Aimee) and rough play. I didn’t really do it as a kid. An only-child, dad not around much, more into playing with my Barbies than wrestling. I ended up becoming a bit of a wuss to be honest with you, and I’m not ashamed to say it but I know I’d have been a lot less of a princess if I’d had more rough-and-tumble-play as a kid.
When Clint got into MovNat and play it included wrestling and he eventually got me into it. I could really see what a baby I was that’s for sure! But it helped ‘toughen’ me up. It also became a really enjoyable way of ‘exercising’, another huge bonus! Just the other day we wrestled a bit before doing a movement workout at the park and I laughed so hard the entire time, even though Clint beats me 99.9% of the time! And when I win it’s cos he lets me haha.

But I don’t mind. I find I’m more determined to try harder to TRY and beat him, I get banged and bruised but I don’t mind, I feel more resilient and confident in myself, I have to use my brain, rough housing really is an incredibly beneficial activity!


So if you have daughters please encourage them to rough house and wrestle, with other girls or with boys, with you even! If you’re a mum I encourage you to wrestle a bit with your kids, there are so many games you can play that aren’t flat out wrestling but still rough enough to get the benefits and have some fun.


King of the Beam, Sternum Tag, Bull in the Ring, Hip Tiggy, pillow fights, if you need more ideas ask Clint, he has heaps of rough play games up his sleeve!


๐—ฅ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐˜€: ๐˜€๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐˜€ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐˜€

๐™‚๐™š๐™ฉ ๐™˜๐™ค๐™ข๐™›๐™ค๐™ง๐™ฉ๐™–๐™—๐™ก๐™š ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š ๐™™๐™ž๐™จ๐™˜๐™ค๐™ข๐™›๐™ค๐™ง๐™ฉ
Rough housing is incredibly beneficial and important for kids of all ages, abilities and for both girls and boys. So parent, get comfortable with the idea of them being in discomfort of they want to be in it! Kids like feeling the discomfort from wrestling for many reasons and they like giving it to others for just as many reasons. If your child is keen to do it, have an open mind and a positive view on it, instead of “NO FIGHTING, EVER!”. Once you get past the discomfort of being comfortable with the whole idea of your kids play fighting you can learn how to encourage and allow it safely and positively so they can get the most out of it when they do it.

๐™Ž๐™š๐™ฉ ๐™˜๐™ก๐™š๐™–๐™ง ๐™—๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฃ๐™™๐™–๐™ง๐™ž๐™š๐™จ / ๐™ง๐™ช๐™ก๐™š๐™จ – probably the biggest one
Whether I’m working with kids or playing with my nephews I always set clear rules for rough play before it begins. My main rule is “whatever you do to me I can do to you” because so few kids these days understand, through experience, physical discomfort, their own limits and those of others. So when an adult who’s bigger and stronger can whack them back after they whack, they end up learning their own and others’ physical thresholds!

Some rules to include for kids rough housing together might be:
– no head shots
– no biting
– no intentional groin hits
– say “tap out” and if they do so, stop immediately
– rough play in a suitable place/environment only (home only, not school etc)
– always ask permission from others before starting
– only do it when an adult is present
– if one person wants to, or the adult says to stop, it’s time to stop and everyone is going to be ok with that
etc

๐™…๐™ค๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐™ž๐™ฃ
Some kids are shy, not confident in their physical abilities, or just don’t know how to do it. If you initiate it and make a game of it it can encourage shy and timid kids to have a go. You can start by mild teasing and nudging, setting goals and dares. Use your imagination and what you know about your child in terms of how they cope and react but pushing them a little outside of their emotional and physical boundaries, a bit at a time, can be hugely beneficial.

“๐™ˆ๐™ฎ ๐™ ๐™ž๐™™๐™จ ๐™ ๐™š๐™š๐™ฅ ๐™œ๐™ค๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™™๐™ค๐™ฃ’๐™ฉ ๐™ฌ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ฉ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ค๐™ฅ”
I find it helpful to set a time limit at the start of the rough play session with verbal agreement from all participants or, and set a “two minutes left” timer alarm then the alarm for when the time is up. If everyone knows beforehand that there’s a time limit (similar to time limits set for tech time and online gameplay), and then there’s a really clear alarm to indicate to kids when time is almost up, it helps prevent the seemingly never-ending rough play sessions!

If your kids aren’t likely to adhere to this then go the next step of creating a consequence for not stopping when time is up then stick to it.

๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ง๐™จ ๐™–๐™ง๐™š๐™ฃ’๐™ฉ ๐™ฃ๐™š๐™˜๐™š๐™จ๐™จ๐™–๐™ง๐™ž๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™– ๐™—๐™–๐™™ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ
Of course parents don’t want to see their kids crying but tears aren’t necessarily a bad thing when it comes to rough playtime. Often, kids begin to cry when they get a big bump while roughhousing. Sometimes those tears are appropriate to the injury and your child is ready to get back into the action after a quick hug or reassurance from you.

Sometimes, though, kids cry wildly, clearly over-reacting. That’s good! It means all that laughter has loosened up some pent-up emotions and they’re using this time to let out pushed down or unprocessed feeling. After a good cry, your child will be so much more relaxed and happy, since those emotions will be released.

One of the rules for rough housing could be that if serious tears are happening that everyone needs to stop and check in on each other, and verbally agree to continue or to stop and do something else. It all comes back to getting used to continual open and clear communication and understanding.

๐˜ผ๐™Ž๐˜ฟ ๐™ ๐™ž๐™™๐™จ + ๐™ฌ๐™ง๐™š๐™จ๐™ฉ๐™ก๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ/๐™ง๐™ค๐™ช๐™œ๐™ ๐™ฅ๐™ก๐™–๐™ฎ

“Because ASD affects the development of social skills and communication skills, it can also affect the development of important play skills, like the ability to copy simple actions, explore the environment, share objects and attention with others, imagine what other people are thinking and feeling, respond to others, take turns” (Raising Children)

๐˜ ๐˜ง๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ข ๐˜ญ๐˜ฐ๐˜ต ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ฌ๐˜ช๐˜ฅ๐˜ด ๐˜ ๐˜ธ๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ฌ ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ต๐˜ฉ ๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ฎ๐˜ฑ๐˜ญ๐˜บ ๐˜ฅ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ’๐˜ต ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ต ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ “๐˜ธ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ต๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ” so I incorporate rough-ish behaviour/actions into games and activities we already do or new ones. By using a pool noodle as a sword and linking it to a game they like that includes sword fighting, they respond well and then the play intensity can increase with how hard we hit each other, where on the body etc without it seeming so ‘rough’ to the child.

Some kids respond well to gentle ‘picking on’ communication and actions and it coaxes them into rough play, while some kids who want to wrestle and beat me up who have a hard time toning their aggression and physical intensity level down need more conversation around empathy, limits/boundaries, consequences, lots of explanation on their level and me being attentive to their level of understanding and progression. I have to adapt to each child and work with where they’re at at the time.

Even a simple game of King of the Beam can be ‘rough play’ but doesn’t seem like it and can suit a lot of kids, even the shy ones. Two people balance on a beam and try to get each other to touch the ground, whoever lasts longer is the king!

There’s no one formula for the perfect wrestle/rough play session, but thorough communication is always important

Would you rough house with your kids?



Get in touch with me if you have any questions about my experiences with roughhousing and rough play for kids


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

Clint

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

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Offal: the forgotten superfood

Don’t scoff, you might actually learn something new + benefit from this stuff!

Offal was described to us recently as “the forgotten superfood” by 180nutrition and damn that’s accurate!It’s a staple food in our house, since starting to gradually add more in 6-7 yrs ago we’ve seen definite improvements to our health (in particular immunity, energy levels and mental health) and are very passionate about inspiring others to consume more good quality offal for not only their own health but for the positive impact on the environment.

Adopting even a semi nose-to-tail approach can have huge health benefits, and the 3 key areas to focus on are:

1. Quality

2. Quantity + consistency

3. Variety

This post we’ll look at WHY offal is so good for us, how to source it, of course how to cook with it and how to get it in if you just can’t stomach it (that’s a pun believe it or not, stomach can be great!!).


๐Ÿด ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—น๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ฒ๐˜

Organ meats are generally the organs of an animal and our ancestors fully utilised these for survival and general health. They didn’t have science to tell them why these parts of the animals were so beneficial, they just ate them because they knew they needed to. Today we do have science to tell us what’s so good about organ meat!


๐—ฆ๐—ผ ๐˜„๐—ต๐˜† ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜€๐—ผ ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐˜‚๐˜€?

๐—›๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐˜๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—บ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐˜‚๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—พ๐˜‚๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜† ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜๐˜€:

1. Increased energy levels

2. Aids weight loss

3. Improved skin health

4. Supports cognitive function

5. Immune boosting

6. Reduces risk of disease

7. Promotes muscle growth

8. Reduces toxic load


“Animal organ meats and other components like bones and fat often provide nutrients that fuel the same organs in humans. Thatโ€™s because the vitamins and minerals will be found where they are stored or used the most. For example, B vitamins that support detoxification are found in the liver โ€“ the bodyโ€™s main detoxification organ. Calcium and phosphorus are found in the bones of animals and also support human bone health. ” – Carnivore Aurelius

Organ meats contain essential nutrients the human body needs for optimal health, in a bio-available form and many vitamins and minerals NOT FOUND IN PLANT FOODS.


Why we need organ meats with muscle meat dishes

One reason consuming offal is so important is that if we only eat muscle meat (think chicken breast and thighs, steaks, mince etc) we miss out on essential amino acids that GO WITH muscle meat to help them break down and be utilised in the body. Many yrs of mostly only muscle meat consumption can easily lead to high homocysteine levels in the blood which leads to a higher susceptibility of sickness and disease (the common things too like diabetes and heart problems).


Offal, gelatin and fat balance out what muscle meat brings to the table in terms of nutrition. We need a combo of all, at least most of the time.

If you can drink a cup of bone broth with a muscle meat dish then that’s brilliant, or make dishes calling for ‘stock’ with broth instead. Adding some liver or kidney to mince is great too. Spreading some healthy homemade pate on meat. Even drinking a glass of collagen water or having a healthy gelatin dish with meals will help.


๐—œ๐—ณ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚ ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฐ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—บ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ฐ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜† ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—น๐—น๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚’๐—น๐—น ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐™ค๐™›๐™›๐™–๐™ก ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต: (๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐—ป, ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—ผ!)

Skin

Cartilage

Bone

Bone marrow

Organ meats

Tendons

Fattier meat cuts

Animal fats, like lard and tallow


๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜€๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—พ๐˜‚๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜๐˜† ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜๐˜€

Ideally the best kind of offal comes from farms using the cleanest, most ethical and sustainable practices. In Australia there are limits as to what offal cuts we can get our hands on, plus not all farmers use good clean methods and our labelling laws here don’t require the ingredients list to be made available to us for what animals were fed and how they were raised.


Main categories of animals for food + what to look for in order of best to least best (lol):

BEEF + LAMB ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿ‘

– Biodynamic organic (regenerative practices)

– Certified organic (no chemicals used on farm, on animals or in feed, no soy in feed)

– 100% grass-fed / pasture-raised (no highly processed grain feed, only pure clean grain supplement during dry times) + no chemicals said to be used (official certification not received but farmer uses best practices)

– Grass-fed majority of life until end if fed grain at the abattoir (not the end of the world but not ideal)


Not good: grain-fed, soy-fed, raised on farm using Round-Up (glyphosate) ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ฑ๐˜ฆ๐˜ค๐˜ช๐˜ข๐˜ญ๐˜ญ๐˜บ ๐˜ช๐˜ง ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ด๐˜ถ๐˜ฎ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฃ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ฎ๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ธ.


POULTRY ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿฆ†๐Ÿฆƒ

(chicken, duck, turkey)

– Certified organic without soy in feed + free-range

– Organic practices but not certified + free-range

As far as we know almost all chickens bred for meat are fed grain in Australia, it’s near impossible to avoid that but what we can do is seek out farms not using soy in the feed, not using chemicals or hormones. Free-range is the bare minimum for poultry meat.


GAME ๐ŸฆŒ๐Ÿฆ˜๐Ÿ

(deer, kangaroo, goat etc)

– Certified organic (rare to find) without grain feed

– Wild (as long as no feed was given containing grain)

– Free-range

Most game meat is wild, but some is farmed. If farmed, look for grain-free feed as these animals should be fed what’s natural to them.


SEAFOOD ๐ŸŸ

– Wild-caught.
Farmed is no good, full of grain and soy and all sorts of other crap.


Ask butchers to find out and tell you the farming practices used on “grass-fed” products, ask them to try and source the good stuff, look online for home-delivery options and local markets providing the best quality possible.

Good luck!


๐— ๐—ฌ๐—ง๐—›: ๐˜„๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ๐—ป’๐˜ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐˜‚๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐˜’๐˜€ ๐—ฎ ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—น๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ + ๐˜€๐˜๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ๐˜…๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜€


Many people question, whether liver is safe to eat as it is a โ€˜filtering organโ€™ so therefore must contain toxins. Yes, liverโ€™s function is to clear out toxins from the body, but this doesnโ€™tโ€™ mean that’s where they’re stored.
Dr. Chris Kresser says:

โ€œA popular objection to eating liver is the belief that the liver is a storage organ for toxins in the body. While it is true that one of the liverโ€™s role is to neutralize toxins (such as drugs, chemical agents and poisons), it does not store these toxins. Toxins the body cannot eliminate are likely to accumulate in the bodyโ€™s fatty tissues and nervous systems.

On the other hand, the liver is a is a storage organ for many important nutrients (vitamins A, D, E, K, B12 and folic acid, and minerals such as copper and iron).

These nutrients provide the body with some of the tools it needs to get rid of toxins.โ€

Wow! Did you learn something new there?

๐™‡๐™ž๐™ซ๐™š๐™ง, ๐™š๐™จ๐™ฅ๐™š๐™˜๐™ž๐™–๐™ก๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™—๐™š๐™š๐™› (๐™œ๐™ง๐™–๐™จ๐™จ-๐™›๐™š๐™™/๐™ค๐™ง๐™œ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™˜) ๐™ž๐™จ ๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™–๐™ข๐™–๐™ฏ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ช๐™ง๐™–๐™ก ๐™ฌ๐™๐™ค๐™ก๐™š๐™›๐™ค๐™ค๐™™ ๐™จ๐™ช๐™ฅ๐™š๐™ง๐™›๐™ค๐™ค๐™™ not to be avoided due to incorrect information but instead to be consumed and benefited from

๐—ง๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐˜€ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด + ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ธ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ธ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐˜„๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—นTips for boosting immunity naturally

News flash: We don’t LOVE the taste and texture of most offal cuts we eat!

We eat it because we need to and we make it more palatable by being creative in the kitchen.


The easiest on the taste buds would be chicken offal so that’s a great one to start with and using the livers to make a paleo pate, frying or baking the hearts (they taste just like thigh anyway!), adding the feet and other bone and cartilage bits to bone broth.


Pork offal is really intense, we don’t like it much and good quality pork is hard to get in Australia so either don’t worry too much about it or, if you can access good quality, the tongue and heart might be easier to manage. Try trimmed and roasted and mixed with yummy roast veg like sweet potato and pumpkin.


Lamb is easier on the nose and taste buds than beef and if you still can’t deal with the liver, which is one of the most nutritious cuts, start with the hearts and kidney. Heart roasted is absolutely delicious, kidney (and liver) minced and added to mince as patties is great.

Beef offal is the most nutritious but stronger in flavour. Liver is the powerhouse but not enjoyable for most (including us) so what we used to do before we got more used to the taste, was to soak it overnight in lemon juice, rinse then prep/cook. Reduces the intensity of the flavour by a lot!


Beef liver + kidney minced and added to mince as patties is a regular brekkie for us. Paleo beef heart stew is a method we tried for heart initially and liked it so much we tried roasting it by itself and have loved that ever since. Beef tongue slow cooked to become really soft then added to sautรฉed carrot, onion and cabbage with coconut amino and bone broth is one of our faves.

Of course, there’s always bacon. Add that to the mix and it helps improve the flavour (like a version of old fashioned lambs fry). Creating healthy stews and mincing to add with muscle meat are always great options.


You can also try adding a paleo avocado sauce, just mashed avo or paleo tomato sauce to have with offal, we find they really reduce the intensity of flavour.

๐˜พ๐™ค๐™ข๐™ข๐™š๐™ฃ๐™ฉ ๐™—๐™š๐™ก๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™–๐™จ๐™  ๐™ช๐™จ ๐™›๐™ค๐™ง ๐™ข๐™ค๐™ง๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ!


๐—ข๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ฟ๐˜†

Especially great for offal newbies and those just not that into the flavour of most but want to consume more organs.

Check out these recipes on our website:

Beef Mince + Liver Patties

Chicken Liver Pate

Bone Broth

Beef Jerky

Let us know if you try and of these and what you think!


“๐—œ ๐—ท๐˜‚๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป’๐˜ ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—œ ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐˜๐˜€. ๐—›๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฝ!”

A few months ago I would have said something like “well you just might need to suck it up and get used to it” and suggested starting with the mildest organ meats in the smallest amounts.

But now I’d say…
Offal supplements! Why? Because I’ve been taking and loving them!


I was sourcing, buying, prepping and cooking offal regularly. Not nearly as often or in as large a quantities as I wanted because I couldn’t get to the butchers who stock the good stuff. I was seeing US + NZ organ supps on our social feeds and wishing I could access some to try, for when I couldn’t buy and eat the fresh stuff, but of course getting from overseas isn’t ideal (for many reasons) but eventually I came across an Aussie company producing grass-fed beef offal supplements. So I got in touch with ’em and was able to get my hands on their two products to try.

I love them! I stopped eating fresh offal for a few weeks so I could monitor how I was going taking the capsules and I kid you not, I get far more benefit than I did eating offal every day!


I wasn’t sure why this was and found out during a video chat with Matt the director of Ancestral Nutrition that because the organ meats they use are freeze-dried and don’t contain the water that fresh meat does, it’s basically concentrated nutrients going into the body. And because organ meat is bio-available (easily digests) it’s working it’s magic quickly.

My skin is clearer, energy levels are up, and immune system is great.


I can’t tell you to take supplements but I can tell you my experience with organ supps has been hugely positive and I’m happy to recommend them as something for you to look into for yours and your family’s health.

We’re usually not fans of supplements but these are different.

No taste, no cooking, just easy essential nutrients ๐Ÿ‘Œ


Get in touch with me if you have any questions about my experience taking these supps and if you’d like to find out when we’ll have them available for purchase.


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

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.

๐Ÿค’ Immune boosting: what does it mean + how do we do it naturally?

It’s only early autumn, so why is everyone sick?

We’re already noticing a lot of people starting to get sick and it’s only early Autumn (we have theories around why this is) and Winter is getting closer so it’s time to discuss natural immune boosters for the whole family.

This blog we share some expert advice and education, along with our own experiences and tips.

From various things we do that can be lowering our immunity, to lots of ideas on how to boost it naturally.


What is “immune-boosting” all about?

“The immune system is essentially a three-layer system:

At its most basic is the skin and mucous membranes, which act as a physical barrier to prevent invasion from foreign bodies and other antigens, such as parasites, bacteria, viruses and toxins.

The second layer is known as the innate immune system, a broad-acting, short-term, non-specific immune response to pathogens such as bacteria or viruses.

A third layer is the most complex. At its root is a population of white blood cells known as lymphocytes that have a cellular membrane embedded with thousands of identical receptors that are used to recognize and bind to specific antigens and mount an immune response locally. However, if the infection is too large, the lymphocytes secrete a molecule that alerts helper T cells that combine with the molecule as well as fragments of antigens to form a type of cell called a lymphoblast, which then secrete a variety of interleukins that provides a more powerful type of immune response. These cells can also promote the growth of cytotoxic T cells, thought to destroy tumorous cells or cells infected with viruses.

A third class of immune cells, known as phagocytes, meanwhile, work by engulfing microbes or other unwanted products in the bloodstream. The main phagocyte is the macrophage, which means โ€œbig eaterโ€ based on its ability to gobble up foreign substances.” Mark’s Daily Apple

Getting the body to a point where it can handle exposure to various common sickness ‘contributors’ and not be obviously affected (i.e. getting sick) is a nice place to be!

At the sickest time of my life when my immunity was shot, I was knocked down with a bug of some kind on a monthly basis. I was not living, I was existing. I was miserable.

Since then I’ve had bouts of low immunity on and off and would be out of action for a week at a time. Over the years as I’ve build my foundation health up that’s totally changed and now I rarely get sick and it’s only for short periods. It’s so nice!

๐—ฆ๐—ผ ๐˜„๐—ต๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐—ถ๐—น๐—ฑ ๐˜‚๐—ฝ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ถ๐—บ๐—บ๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ถ๐˜๐˜†? ๐—ง๐—ผ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ณ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น๐—น๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜!


Happiness + the immune system are linked

“…research has consistently shown a clear and positive link between happiness and physical health. A significant connection has been made between happiness and our immune system functioning. Eg, undergraduate students exposed to the common cold virus or the flu after being exposed to the happiness condition (funny videos) were less likely to get sick, and reported less severe symptoms in comparison to those not exposed to the happiness condition. Several studies found similar results; those exposed to some variation of the happiness condition demonstrated a more positive outlook on life and a related strengthening of their immune systems.

What is the secret to a healthy immune system? Is it as simple as smiling? Well, no, especially if the smiles are fake! Research shows that when people, especially women, fake their smiles, there is a clearly negative impact on mood and productivity. But, when people focus on pleasant thoughts and memories, and their smiles are authentic, their moods and productivity improve.

Happiness is related to many benefits, including improved relationships, a positively changed immune system and a longer life. So how do we increase our levels of happiness?”

Some suggestions include:

– Identifying negative people, news and situations we’re being exposed to and distance ourselves from them whenever possible. Even just not watching the news every day or unfollowing sad news and upsetting Facebook pages can help!

– Train the brain to be more positive using different methods, finding those that feel helpful and work for you. From positive affirmation writing, meditating (guided or not), finding people to have positive conversations with, seeing a counsellor or psychologist, creating a vision board etc.

– Have self-compassion and forgiveness. Yes it’s important to take responsibility for our choices but we also need to show compassion to ourselves, forgive and move forward.

– Find your values. What’s important to you in your personal and professional lives? What are your short and long term goals? What’s your ‘happy’?

๐˜ฝ๐™ค๐™ค๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™๐™–๐™ฅ๐™ฅ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™š๐™จ๐™จ + ๐™—๐™ค๐™ค๐™จ๐™ฉ ๐™ž๐™ข๐™ข๐™ช๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ฎ!


8 ways to weaken the immune system

From environment, to food, medicine + lifestyle, we’re surrounded by things that supress our immune system.

๐Ÿฌ Sugar
In particular refined sugars and high-sugar fruits. Yep fruit! We’ll myth-bust another day but a common one is that fruit is a health-booster. It’s not, and the sugar in fruit along with standard processed sugar significantly lower immune function. Even healthier versions like coconut sugar. The only moderately healthy sugar is local raw honey.

๐Ÿ˜ด Poor sleep
You may think you sleep fine but it’s hard to tell when you’ve had a truly good nights sleep and are getting it regularly. We’ll look at sleep as topic another week but if you think you MAY not be sleeping brilliantly, it could be impacting your immunity.

๐Ÿท Alcohol
Pretty obvious, but even that glass of organic wine every night could be compromising your immunity. Sugary alcohol is even worse but alcohol in general has major impacts on our health.

๐Ÿ’Š Drugs, medications + antibiotics
This is a big category and one that is often unknown to parents, especially with so many kids being on ASD meds. There’s research on hundreds of different drugs are suggesting they increase a personโ€™s susceptibility to infection by crippling immune function. Researchers found that certain people taking antibiotics had reduced levels of cytokines – the hormone messengers of the immune system.

๐Ÿฅช Grains
Grains, in particular modern and refined, are highly inflammatory. Even that organic ancient-grain sourdough bread you switched to. Grains are grains and the human body does not process them well.

๐Ÿ˜ž Chronic stress
Humans are designed for short bursts of stress, like when we used to have to try and get away from predators, not long-term worries. When something eats away at us over a long period of time it massively reduces immune ability.

๐Ÿ˜๏ธ Lack of sun + nature time
We need direct sunlight exposure at various times of the day, fresh air and earthing to heal and to improve immunity. Most of us get no where near enough sun or nature time.

๐Ÿงช Chemicals
In food, body and cleaning products, antibacterial gels etc. Chemical over-load hugely contributes to impaired immunity.


Immune-booster myth-busting

This could be a really long post but we can fit so many characters here! So let’s focus on some less common and probably more shocking myths around immune-boosting…

Myth: Fruit + veggies are good immune-boosters

Plant foods contain natural defences that the human body doesn’t cope with trying to process all the time. There are more anti-nutrients than nutrients and only way to reduce the level of anti-nutrients is to slowly lowly cook them down or soak them out, and aim for the least inflammatory types in general. E.g. berries + avocado are much easier on the body, and slow cooking root veggies to break them down and allow the gut to process them goes a long way.

This goes for green smoothies + green veg too!

We actually get more and bio-available (easily digested) essential nutrients from animal foods (meat, eggs, fat, offal). Fruits and veg don’t contain all of the vitamins and minerals we need either whereas eating nose-to-tail can.

Myth: Wearing sunscreen is healthy

Wrong! For one thing most are full of chemicals which definitely reduce immunity and another, blocking the nutrients from the sun absorbing into our skin means we don’t get essential Vitamin D which is one of the most effective immune boosters.

Myth: Regular detoxes are good

The body can detoxify itself effectively on a daily basis if given the right environment. Short bursts of specific detox protocols can have a short-term noticeable improvement but actual long-term negative impacts to our health if done regularly. Simply reducing inflammatory foods and lifestyle habits can help the body detox naturally, then by adding in nourishing foods like bone broth and offal can enhance detoxification and boost immunity.

Myth: Chicken noodle soup is good if you’re sick

A paleo version yes! But standard types? No. Why? The grains in the noodles and the inflammatory ingredients in the flavourings are the main culprits here. The slow cooked veggies are ok but a better option would be plain organic bone broth. Add some konjac or zoodles in, some cooked chicken and low inflammatory herbs for flavour.

Any of those surprising to you?


Tips for boosting immunity naturally

Here are some ideas you can implement to try to boost immunity naturally..

Going paleo
By reducing/eliminating common inflammatory foods and adding in healing foods we can greatly improve the function of our immune system. An initial detox period can make us feel worse before we feel better but this is natural and ok. We are so much healthier since going paleo 10+ yrs ago.

Upping mineral intake
Most of us are deficient in essential minerals. Siim Land has some amazing info on this but what we do is eat animal-based paleo (offal in particular contains essential minerals) and drink Sole once or twice a day. If you want more info on Sole let us know!

Lots of sun + nature time
Exposing the skin and eyes to natural direct light at various of times of the day, including Vitamin D time, getting fresh air and earthing all greatly help improve immunity.

Try alternative therapies + practices
We like to think of every method out there as ‘tools in our toolbox’ and that no one way is a fix-it-all. We like to use acupuncture, massage, NLP, meditation, journaling, psychology, chiropractic to name a few, when we need. And there are lots more out there!

Make time for ‘happy’ time
We’re ALL busy. Who do you know who isn’t?! But no matter how busy we get it’s important to make time for ‘happy’ time daily. Whether it’s chilling out watching your fave TV show, hobbies and interests, going for a walk, getting some retail therapy… whatever it is that makes you feel genuinely happy, do it!

Low-tox living
See our previous blog to find the info about how to reduce chemical use, especially on the skin and swap for natural options.

Move more + move better
Chronic over-exercising will deplete your system, especially cardio but a balance of natural movement, play, strength training and walking are wonderful!

Bluelight blocking
Avoiding artificial bluelight at night is so helpful, especially in the eyes by wearing amber glasses.

Sleep well
Good, deep, long sleep at night, most nights, hugely improves immunity. A cold room and earthing can help!


Aimee’s experience with really low + really good immunity


Bonus: nutrient-dense immune-boosting recipe

Offal is by far one of the best types of foods to consume to help improve immune function and overall health and well-being. Packed full of essential and bio-available minerals animal organs such as heart, liver and kidney are worth bringing into the family diet but we know that can be challenging as we have personal experience with hating offal and slowly getting more and more used to it then eventually loving it!

So we’re here to help and a great recipe to try is beef mince and liver patties, along with an optional tomato sauce recipe which is there mostly for the really sensitive/picky eaters who need to drown out the meat flavour with sauce! The patties with a side of pastured eggs is a far better option but the sauce could get you over the line getting family members just eating offal, and that’s a win in our books!

Check out the recipe here

If eating offal isn’t an option, or if you and the kids can only manage a little (which may not be enough), another option is to take offal capsules. We’ve recently started doing this and are noticing instant improvements to our health. It saves buying and cooking offal, so it’s definitely a convenience option.

Check out the website for our friends at Ancestral Nutrition and stay tuned for another blog all about our experience with offal whole and supplements!


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.

Clint + 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.

๐Ÿ‘ฃ Balance for Kids: the importance of this skill + how to help kids become better at it

Balance is like a muscle. If we donโ€™t use it we lose it. And we need to have good balance at all ages. This blog focuses on balance for kids (another post will be all about adults) from why having good balance is so important, why some kids don’t have good balance, how to get kids balancing better (including ASD kids) + more.

It’ll be a nice balanced approach… ๐Ÿ˜‰ (with hopefully a couple more puns thrown in cos puns are great! haha)

Having good balance not only helps kids physically but also emotionally. Having good balance in an indoor environment is totally different to outdoor environments, and different outdoor environments have pros and cons with balance, so there’s a few things we can dig into this week that should provide new perspectives and ideas to you guys – especially if you’re a parent or childhood worker/educator.


Why kids need good balance + what that even looks like

Technical jargon time…


Balance is the ability to maintain a controlled body position during task performance, whether sitting at a table, walking the balance beam or stepping up onto something. To function effectively across environments and tasks, we need the ability to maintain controlled positions during both static (still) and dynamic (moving) activities.

Static balance + the ability to hold a stationary position with control. Dynamic balance is the ability to remain balanced while engaged in movement.

Technical talk outta the way…


When we talk about kids needing good balance we ultimately mean that they can walk across a branch confidently, comfortably and with control. Many of the kids we work with would say they have “good balance” and can get across a balance beam easily, but what they actually have is momentum and speed! Most kids these days can’t walk along a balance beam on the ground with control let alone up on a higher object or from object to object.

Good balance and coordination allows a child to be involved in the sports and other physical activities with a reasonable level of success as it aids fluid body movement for physical skill performance. This is helpful in maintaining self regulation for daily tasks and developing a social network and achieving a sense of belonging in a community or social setting.

๐™Ž๐™ค๐™ข๐™š ๐™—๐™š๐™ฃ๐™š๐™›๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™ค๐™› ๐™œ๐™ค๐™ค๐™™ ๐™—๐™–๐™ก๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ก๐™ช๐™™๐™š:

– reduced risk of injury
– stronger joints, muscles and bones
– confidence and self-esteem
– the ability to get more out of natural environments


Why some kids have bad balance + what to look out for in your child

Some of the many contributors of poor balance ability include:

– ASD which can contribute to poor motor skills
– Too much indoor time
– Lack of environmental variety exposure (e.g. child uses one particular playground and doesn’t play in other types of environments including nature spaces)
– Too much tech-time (this can lead to simply not enough physical movement time, and also the looking down and forward at a screen effects neck mobility and structure which can effect balance ability)
– Over-protective parents/caregivers who disapprove of nature play and balancing on various objects at various heights
– General low confidence and self-esteem which can prevent kids from playing and exploring what their body’s are capable of
– Eyesight and ear problems
– General lack of physical strength and capability (poor core strength etc)
– Diagnosed balance disorders

Kid Sense ๐™๐™–๐™จ ๐™จ๐™ค๐™ข๐™š ๐™–๐™™๐™ซ๐™ž๐™˜๐™š ๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ก๐™ก ๐™ž๐™› ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™˜๐™๐™ž๐™ก๐™™ ๐™๐™–๐™จ ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™ค๐™—๐™ก๐™š๐™ข๐™จ ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ ๐™—๐™–๐™ก๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™˜๐™ค๐™ค๐™ง๐™™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ…

If a child has difficulties with balance and coordination they might:
– Fall easily, trip often or canโ€™t โ€˜recoverโ€™ quickly from being off balance
– Move stiffly (e.g. run like a โ€˜robotโ€™)
– Avoid physical activity (e.g. playground use, sports)
– Be late to reach developmental milestones (e.g. crawling and walking)
– Be slower than peers to master physical skills (e.g. bike riding, swimming or tree climbing)
– Be less skilful than their peers in refined sports participation
– Push harder, move faster or invade the personal space of others more than they intend
– Be fearful of new physical games or scared of heights that don’t faze their peers
– Have difficulty getting dressed standing up
– Have trouble navigating some environments (e.g. steps, kerbs, uneven ground).
– Tire more quickly then their peers or need to take regular short rest periods during physical activity.

These are very common with the kids we work with and we LOVE helping kids overcome these challenges and balance better!


Balancing indoors vs on playgrounds vs in nature

You guys probably think we’re going to say we believe ultimately kids should be capable balancers in nature… and you’d be right about that! But why do we feel that way? And do we think any other environments are beneficial? ๐Ÿค”

Indoor environments

Have a lot of benefits to kids needing help improving balance. Heck, half of our clients come from local OT’s who work indoors and for good reason! Practicing physical skills indoors removes a lot of issues associated with kids who have a variety of sensitivities with weather, light, noise, textures, animals/bugs etc, common for kids on the spectrum. Also, it’s safer. For kids who need to begin in a controlled and minimal environment, indoor balance practice is perfect. Starting here with the intention of getting them outdoors eventually is ideal (why many OTs send kids our way, we can help them when they’re ready for that next step).

But.. let’s compare this kind of scenario to say a gymnastics child who’s a competent balancer indoors on high beams… it doesn’t mean they’ll be awesome at balancing outdoors, maybe ever, because the environment inside is so controlled and limiting. Outside balancing is totally different!

What about playgrounds?

Well they’re outdoors so that’s positive and those build more ‘natural’ and with different levels, surfaces, thickness of objects etc is great but if a child is usually playing at the one playground, or never really plays and balances in other environments, they’ll be missing out. Playground equipment has a place, for sure, but can definitely be very limiting. Playground play doesn’t fully equip a human with how to move in their most natural way and in the most natural surroundings (i.e. nature).

Balancing in nature

Is ultimately the best environment. Being capable at moving in different weather elements, on varying surfaces, at varying heights, in various ways is what all kids should be. But it’s not possible for all kids to be good at balancing in nature at all times.

So we believe kids should be ‘Jacks of all environments’ and play indoors, outdoors, everywhere!


A simple better-balance exercise to do with kids

One of my favourite ways to get kids to slow down and control their walking across a beam (so it’s not just their momentum getting them across) is to incorporate stepping over a pool noodle. It’s soft and safe, if I’m holding it I can adjust the height for the individual child (making it easier or harder for them), it’s fun and the addition of stepping over an object requires more focus and stability.

Simply place a timber beam (2×4 timber from the hardware store) on the carpet or grass, position yourself halfway along crouching down and ask the child to walk across the beam and step over the noodle you’re holding out over it.

Encourage them to take it slow, think about their steps, steady themselves to step over the noodle without touching the floor/ground, then as they get better at this you can speed things up, make it harder by increasing the height of the noodle, getting them to step over it a couple times in a row, walk backwards and step over backwards, sideways etc. This simple exercise has so many variations and opportunities for increasing the difficulty therefore improving the development and ability of the child ๐Ÿ‘

Turn it into a game, have a go yourself, find ways to make it fun for everyone.


Why barefoot is best + tips for achieving this

Wearing regular shoes regularly changes the shape of our foot which limits mobility, strength and flexibility, impairing all movement not just balancing. We know balancing is a really important foundation human skill, so by wearing shoes we hugely restrict our ability to master this skill.


When barefoot toes can spread, arches can contract, and nerve endings can switch on to what’s beneath and send proper messages to the brain, all making getting better at balancing easier.

Most kids I work with wear shoes to sessions for various reasons, I encourage them to kick ’em off and play without, and balancing is one of the main activities this is so important. When a child’s foot is connecting to the beam or log underneath they can feel it properly, they can grip better with their toes and they can get used to the different textures and temps.


The toes of a human foot are meant to measure WIDER than the rest of the foot for the purposes of gripping! When we spend more time moving naturally without any shoes on our toes can learn to spread.


๐™๐™ž๐™ฅ๐™จ ๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™œ๐™š๐™ฉ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ ๐™ž๐™™๐™จ ๐™—๐™–๐™ก๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฉ ๐™จ๐™๐™ค๐™š๐™จ ๐™ค๐™ฃ:

– be the example and balance barefoot yourself- start off on ‘easy’ surfaces re texture. Instead of starting on a rough log, start on a smooth piece of timber or similar

– create goals + rewards for kids balancing barefoot (some of our kids have started going barefoot more often cos they want the ‘Barefoot’ Primal Kids Badge!)

– encourage barefoot time throughout the day, as often as possible, everyday. The more time we spend barefoot the stronger our feet become barefoot and the more used to it we get.

– buy toe socks and barefoot shoes if texture is still a big issue (see previous Barefoot posts)


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.

Clint

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.

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!ย โ™ป๏ธย 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 loooooveย Ecology Skincareย 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 asย ECO Mineralsย , MooGoo Makeupย , benecosย , Nude by Natureย + 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
–ย Rosehip PLUSย pure rose hip oil for scarring and uneven skin tone
– Perfume is a natural roll-on fromย One Seed organic perfumery
– Sunscreen: very rarely do we use any and we buy various brands but the one we have at the moment isย 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™ฉย www.safecosmetics.orgย ๐Ÿงก


๐Ÿงผย ๐Ÿงด Making the transition to using more natural safe skincare productsย 

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!ย 

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 postย 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.

๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป + ๐˜„๐—ต๐˜† ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐˜€๐—ผ ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜๐—ต?

Gelatin is the cooked form of collagen, found in animal bones, skin and connective tissue. Gelatin contains lots of amino acids, which is why it has so many health benefits.

Our bodies naturally produce collagen, but as we age, we produce less – research shows our natural collagen production begins to decline by 1% from age 20!

When we eat a meat-free diet and even just standard muscle meats without utilising the joints, bones, skin and offal we miss out on a huge amount of collagen in the diet that our skin, gut, muscles, etc need for optimal function. Consuming pure gelatin powder, from a good source, is a great way to supplement in a whole-food way, to boost collagen intake easily and regularly.

It’s said adults need around 4tbsp gelatin in their day and if we’re not consuming bone broth, slow cooked meats on the bone, chewing the cartilage around the bones, and eating offal then we’re definitely not getting even close to that dose.

So why do we need gelatin in our diet?

– collagen is the structural protein that helps maintain skin elasticity and keep your skin looking smooth, plump, and supple
– improves hair and nail strength
– repairs the gut lining and helps with digestion (it’s actually needed WITH meat consumption to help with digestion)
– strengthens and protects joints and bones
– boosts immunity
– reduces inflammation
– helps balance hormones
– provides essential protein without the bulking-up effect
– can reduce cellulite
– strengthens teeth
– aids in the body’s natural detox process
– improves sleep
– helps us feel full quicker, for longer, when eating

That’s a long list!

Gelatin truly is a superfood and it’s a staple in our kitchen.

Gelatin for healthy joints

Gelatin contains natural collagen which helps strengthen and secure the tissues in our joints. Plenty of research has studied the impact of gelatin as a treatment for bone and joint problems like osteoarthritis, having a positive effect on joint mobility issues and pain. The best source of this is bone broth as the nutrients in animal bones and joints (such as beef) are the SAME as in human bones and joints! More to come on this later but gelatin powder as a substitute is fantastic.

In summary, the benefits of gelatin for joints and bones are:

  • Stimulating joint cartilage cell growth.
  • Increasing mobility and range of movement
  • Reducing inflammation joint pain
  • Strengthening and improving the condition of skin, hair & nails
  • Maintaining joint integrity
  • Restoring joint mobility

I can say this is all 100% true as I’ve had a really bad lower back since 1999 but really weak bones since birth. With a degenerated intervertebral disc between L4 and L5 which gave me years of daily debilitating chronic pain, to have become almost totally pain-free after two weeks of drinking bone broth daily and using bone broth and gelatin ever since, I’m an example of how poor eating and nutrient deficiency causes major health problems and then how it can be turned around with good eating and lifestyle changes.

The two main types of gelatin

1. Gelling gelatin powder: dissolves in hot water, makes jelly-type foods, contains collagen and other goodness.

2. Hydrolysed collagen powder – processed to extract the gelatin but leave the collagen and amino acids. Doesn’t gel but easily dissolves in most liquids (cold, room temp and warm).

Watch our YouTube videos ‘What is gelatin + why you should be consuming it‘ and ‘The different types of gelatin explained‘ for loads more info.

How to source good quality gelatin and collagens

Basically.. avoid commercial packets of jelly crystals and jelly products and opt for packets of pure grass-fed beef gelatin and collagen powders.

The different types of gelatin explained” there used to be only 3 varieties of good gelatin you could you could buy, and they were only from America, now there are loads of kinds, including lots of Aussie brands, but it can be a bit confusing! Jelly crystal and jelly products in the shops are full of absolute CR*P inflammatory ingredients and gelatin from really dodgy sources.

Yes the gelatin might be made using trotters and other animal off-cuts, but that’s not what’s wrong with them (offal is where gelatin comes from, it’s a good thing to use all of an animal, no waste!). The problem is how the animals were raised. It’s best for us, the animal and the environment to source gelatin products raised GRASS-FED and when possible, ORGANICLY.

Plenty of Aussie companies are now sourcing good quality ingredients to make gelatin (gelling) powder and hydrolysed (collagen) powders. And many even include other ‘healthy’ ingredients like green powders, aloe vera and more. But in my opinion simple is always best. PURE powders along with eating simple wholefoods (meat, veg, eggs, fat etc) are going to provide the most health benefits and save you from over-spending. Health food stores (physical/online) sell various pure beef gelatin powders now, as do few supermarkets. Read labels and look for grass-fed or organic powders.

Some hydrolysed collagen powders even target different parts of the body specifically. We love these! A local company we use makes these and explained to us how they process the collagen, it’s super simple and not an example of ‘bad’ processed foods at all. Stock the pantry with the gelling gelatin powders to make yummy jelly-type foods, and a full spectrum collagen powder to dissolve into liquids or a variety of different collagens depending on your health needs.

How we use gelatin + collagen powders every day at home

The #1 way to consume gelatin is in bone broth and we prefer home-made with just beef and chicken (organic) bones, no veg or flavourings, for maximum nutrient-density. Ideally gelatin/collagen should be consumed with every meat meal (we consume meat 2-3 times a day) but it’s not always possible to have bone broth, so we make sure we use gelatin and collagen powders.

Simply stirring collagen powders into drinks (water, coffee, tea, hot chocs, juice, etc) is the easiest way to get that goodness in with little effort. Starting with 1 tbsp per day and building up to 4 tbsp.

We also like to make sweet jelly foods with gelling powder; jiggly jelly, firm gummy lollies, creamy panna cotta, marshmallows, fluffy mousse + more.

Gelling gelatin can also be used for some savoury dishes (as I found out after yrs of experimenting!) such as flourless gravy/reductions, nut-free cheeses (soft and firm), and egg dishes.

We also mix gelling gelatin into some liquids to ‘bloom’ (soften) then add hot water and blitz with a milk frother or stick blender. This is great as a milk replacement in hot chocs, coffee etc to thicken up and make frothy (and way healthier!).

At first gelatin just seems to be a sweet jelly-food ingredient but when you think outside the box and get a little creative you realise it’s incredibly versatile. And that’s exactly what I did as a paleo recipe creator and cooking coach, and someone who for a long period of time needed to eat limited types of foods (due to health reasons), including gelatin, and had to get creative with how to make my meals enjoyable.

Visit our Recipes tab on our website for gelatin recipes (sweet and savoury) such as fluffy Strawberry Mousse and Egg-oodles!

Are the vegetarian versions of gelatin ok?

No.

The plant alternatives (agar agar etc) may have originally come in a natural 100% pure form but by the time they’re turned into a product to help foods gel/set, they’re so incredibly processed, no longer really ‘natural’ and come with negative side-effects (mostly to gut health).

Whereas gelatin from animal sources doesn’t. I did a fair bit of research into this a while ago, as I was always asked about at cooking workshops and on SM, and I came to the conclusion that the plant versions are actually unhealthy and not something I can promote using and consuming.

Dr Chris Kresser has an article about why even vegetarians should be consuming gelatin, so basically, animal-sourced gelatin is really important for our health, and the plant-based alternatives can be harmful. That’s my take on it, please do your own research though!

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.

View products here

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

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.