Tag Archives: Raw food

Natural remedies for children

10 Dec

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Following the natural parenting path isn’t easy, especially when your child becomes ill and you must decide which is the best course to ease their suffering. Although I use to work as a nutritional advisor in the field of testing for food intolerances, I am not a medical doctor or any other certified practitioner of heath care. As a natural mama I do have experience of using natural remedies on my child to ease the transition through various forms of healing crisis.

Medical science has done a great job in providing the technology needed to deal with accidents and emergencies which are man-made e.g. surgical methods to prevent life threatening bleeding caused by a car accident.

Holistic or natural therapies and remedies deal with the whole organism in striving to combat dis-ease whilst modern conventional medicine only ever looks at the individual parts of the body/mind system in a separatist, mechanistic model. Furthermore, naturally occurring exposure to germs, and infectious diseases play an important role in helping to develop and strengthen our immune system for maintaining future health.

For these reasons I have opted to not administer any drugs, vaccines or other man-made chemicals to my child’s developing immune system. I view fevers, childhood diseases and other imbalances as a positive sign that the body has reached critical activation point in toxic load and has now activated a healing purge or ‘crisis’ to allow the body to cleanse the poisons

Instead of using drugs to suppress these important healing symptoms, there are a host of natural remedies and therapies available which do not cause the liver to become overburdened and exhibit more negative side effects.

Below are listed a range of common health complaints alongside some natural remedy suggestions. I recommend that you always talk to a health care practitioner of your choice and do your own varied research before trialling any new remedies. Above all else I trust my own instincts and observations whilst trialling new healing remedies or therapies:-

Asthma: Turmeric and ginger root, Fresh unpasteurized apple juice, Salt pipes, Yoga breathing exercises (for older children 3 yrs plus), Breathing in a steam shower room with eucalyptus oil (to open up the airways during an attack), Chiropractic/Osteopath/cranial sacral adjustments. Elimination diet* (led by a natural health practitioner)

*The main culprits which cause intolerances or allergic symptoms in the diet are: wheat, dairy, sugar, yeast, MSG and other artificial flavourings, additives and preservatives.

Allergies (non-life threatening): Freshly prepared nettle tea (contains naturally occurring anti-histamines), Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (taken diluted in water), Chiropractic /Osteopath/cranial sacral adjustments. Elimination diet* (led by a natural health practitioner)

Autism: A complex condition often triggered by heavy metal poisoning from the mercury in dental fillings and/or the mercury added to vaccinations. A heavy metal detox under guidance of a qualified practitioner is paramount to healing the body from mercury poisoning. A natural and safe combination for children to take combines coriander/cilantro herb with the algae called Chlorella.

Constipation: Chia seeds, Flax seeds, Prunes, Apricots, Pears, Figs, Psyllium husk, Aloe vera (in a juice), Probiotics (found in all types of natural yoghurt including vegan coconut yoghurt), Sauerkraut Abdominal massage with lavender oil, Warm bath, Increase water consumption, Physical exercise, Reflexology, Elimination diet* (led by a natural health practitioner)

Colic: Fennel, mint and chamomile tea combined and left to cool to tepid temperature. Baby wearing in a correctly supportive wrap or sling, Switching from formula milk with soya or cows milk to donated breast milk or Goat’s milk as a second best option to human milk, Sound and movement vibration (e.g. riding in a car or dancing and singing to baby)

Congestion/mucus: Turmeric root powder added as a large pinch to homemade lemonade (add a natural sweetener instead of sugar), Neti pot cleansing with sea salt water.

Eliminate mucous producing foods: bananas, wheat, dairy foods such as ice cream, yoghurt and butter; soya, deep fried foods, corn, chips/crisps, cakes, unstable oils such as sunflower and safflower vegetable oil, jams, cereals, biscuits. Increase foods that eliminate mucous such as: green vegetables, ginger, turmeric root, garlic, grapefruit, bamboo shoots, oranges, onions, celery, cauliflower, lemons and limes, asparagus.

Cough: Raw honey mixed with turmeric taken on a spoon.

Cradle cap: Extra virgin coconut oil rubbed on to affected area.

Diabetes: Cinnamon, stevia and xylitol for balanced sweeteners which will not spike blood sugar level. Incorporate as much of the raw food diet as possible to the daily diet.

Eye infection: Breast milk squirted into the eye directly.

Ear infections:  Olive oil poured into the ear canal whilst head is turned to the side.

Fever: Camu camu berry powder mixed with water and a little natural sweetener in a drink.

Flu: To nourish and heal the body use a liquid diet of green smoothies/juices freshly prepared from organic produce in a low speed RPM blender/juicer. Raw garlic and ginger can also  be taken chopped up in small chunks and swallowed like a pill.

Rash: Pure Paw Paw ointment (made from Papaya fruit)

I hope these suggestions help relieve any uncomfortable symptoms. Do remember these healing modalities are not a ‘cure’ for the dis-ease but rather act to buffer and comfort the pain and unpleasant symptoms of healing.

As ancient tribal wisdom and quantum physics all agree, ultimately the root to all dis-ease is first created in the mind through mental disturbance and emotional stress and so can not be ‘cured’ in the long-term by simply treating the physical body.

Techniques such as emotion freedom technique, progressive and attachment parenting methods and other types of emotional therapy are great ways to get to the root of any diseases. (For more information on this see my blog on ‘Mental invitations: the real root cause of disease’).

 Wishing great natural health to you and your children.
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Naturally healthy kids on a shoestring

8 Sep

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They say your health is your wealth and that is so true when you consider a well man has many wishes but a sick man has only one.  The world of natural, healthy food seems to have gone mad with the average price of an organic apple now matching that of a hamburger in Macdonald’s; is it any wonder more and more kids are suffering from obesity, diabetes and a plethora of other diseases which just a few generations ago were rare or even unknown in the younger generations.

Since becoming a parent and giving up pursuing a high paid career I have committed to full-time attachment parenting without any substantial added  incomes. I have had to learn first hand how to make a budget stretch whilst maintaining the health of all the family.

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Tip 1: Stop buying pre-packaged and pre-made foods, they are expensive and have poor quality nutrient content. Instead shop mainly in the outside aisles of the supermarkets where most of the fresh food is and watch your shopping budget stretch further. Swap sugary cereals for porridge oats, confectionary for naturally sweet dried fruit and crisps for salty nuts or olives.

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Tip 2: Buy foods from local markets and farms, cutting out the middle man

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Tip 3: Grow your own; maybe you have an allotment, garden, balcony or even just a window sill. Everyone can grow something. Tomatoes, salad leaves and strawberries are all easy to grow and don’t need a lot of space. THis is a great way to connect kids with where their food comes from and inspire them to eat more fresh fruit and vegetables.

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Tip 4: Forage wild food for free; go to your local woods, park or even your neighbour’s front gardens where you will be surprised at how much is growing, even in the city. Apple trees are easy to spot, also  try foods you can’t normally buy in the supermarket which are super nutrient dense: rosehips, dandelion leaves (yes weeds are good for you), wild garlic, watercress, chestnuts, hazel nuts, blackberries, and elderberries

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Tip 5: Eat more raw; it’s more nutrient dense, uses less money on the gas bill and helps to cure all sorts of ailments from allergies to diabetes. For tips on amazing child-friendly raw recipes see Raw food 4 kids book at http://www.therawfoodmum.com

Tip 6: Have vegetarian/vegan days; animal products for protein intake are so much more expensive than protein rich plant foods such as beans, lentils and legumes.

Tip 7: Breastfeed your children full-term (usually between 2 and 4 years), allowing them to wean themselves. All financially challenged countries value extended breastfeeding for ensuring optimum nutrition for the child.

Tip 8: Ensure your child gets outdoor sun exposure directly on unprotected skin, all-year-round, to boost vitamin D levels. Even when it’s cloudy and raining, the rays still come through.

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Tip 9: Learn how to get the most out of your whole foods products. Eg. One fresh coconut can provide you with at least three products; coconut milk, coconut water and desiccated coconut. You can also learn easy ways to tun simple, whole food ingredients like raisins, dates and cashews into home-made versions of popular shop bought snacks such as ‘Naked’ bars.

Tip 10: Take advantage of government initiatives to save you money; healthy start vouchers are a great way to save money on your fresh fruit and vegetables in the UK.

Let the sunshine in!

3 May

P1000665 In the above photo Ulysses is sporting the typical expression I receive from people when they find out we don’t use sunscreen….arghh!

We all know the documented benefits of a moderate amount of sun exposure to the skin: increases vitamin D levels, kills unwanted fungus, heals skin conditions such as Psoriasis, aids in producing sweat and thus detoxes the body, provides us with the full spectrum of light to balance our mood, regulates our circadian rhythm (sleep/wake cycle) and generally has a healing effect on the body.

Then there’s the well documented con of the sun’s dangerous nature, triggering skin cancer; that’s enough to make any parent reach for the sun cream bottle isn’t it?

A word in defence of that beautiful ball of fire in the sky we call the sun; the burning star that gives life to everything on planet Earth and, without which, we would not exist.

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The sun has such great healing powers that it actually purges anything out of the human body that should not be there, not create a state of disease crisis but sometimes creates a healing crisis in the form of the big C word.

‘Anything that shouldn’t be there’ includes a whole array of man-made, toxic chemicals, many of which are located in your average sun cream. It is interesting to note that Australia, one of the biggest countries for using sun screen protection also has one of the highest rates of skin cancer.

These chemicals often cause allergic reactions in many people as well as blocking the body’s pores which form part of the lymphatic drainage system, this is how the body cleanses its internal environment and regulates the body temperature, through sweating.

My family spent 7 weeks in beautiful sunny Gozo when my 7 month old son was suffering from a severe mould allergy. We spent a little bit of time everyday in direct sunlight without any sun cream and the rest of the time kept in the shade. We did not suffer any sunburn and in fact, came away with a revitalized and healthy child back to England.

What then should we do, unlimited sun exposure with no protection? of course not!

No culture does that. The mediterranean people take their siesta in the middle of the day at the hottest hours and shut up shop during this time. The Arabs chew on the root or seeds of the Amni-Majus also known as ‘toothpick’ (a white flower also native to British Isles) and the Indians chew on the seeds of the Babchi plant to increase the Melanin, and thus darken their skin pigment in the sun. Many people in hot countries also wear long, dark clothing to absorb heat away from the skin.

Nowhere in the world is more careless in the sun than in the Western ‘civilised countries’, this is especially surprising taking into account the fact that we usually have the fairest skin!

In order of decreasing natural protection, the following skin colours exist: black, brown, olive, fair, albino. We were all designed to ive in certain climates and must respect our skin colour and adjust sun exposure times accordingly to reflect our own personal exposure limits.

There are many ways to protect yourself naturally from the powerful effect of the sunshine in full force.   We are, after all, living in a very toxic world within which we cannot help but be contaminated to a certain extent. Here are some useful tips to protect yourself from the sun naturally:

  • Limit exposure during: the sun’s strongest hours usually between 11am-3pm, after a winter period with little or no exposure to direct sunlight and during illness or de-hydration when the body is more prone to sunburn.
  • Build up your sun exposure gradually starting with no more than 10-15 minutes per day and building up to a limit that suits your individual tolerance levels. Expect some pinkness as pale skin adjusts to the sun, it is nothing to be overly concerned with. Sunburn will display itself as sore and/or peeling.(NB: if you are a fiery, red or fair-haired, fair-skinned individual with freckles, you will have the lowest tolerance and must take the greatest care)
  • During the hottest hours, when you have reached your own tolerance levels for direct exposure to sunlight, use hats and long-sleeved clothing made out of natural linen or cotton to cover up. White is the best colour for reflecting sunlight.

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  • Beware sunglasses! They were originally invented for pilots flying high in the atmosphere where there is high, unnatural UV exposure. They have no practical use on land other than as a fashion statement or disguise. It is as important for your eyes as for your skin to allow the retinas to receive the full sunlight spectrum directly.

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  • Hydrate your body as much as possible; before, during and after sun exposure. Pure spring water is the best as well as coconut water. If using regular water, add a pinch of quality pink or grey salt to every litre to help structure the water for optimum hydration. Fresh snacks such as watermelon are an ideal option for hydration. Vegan ice cream such as ‘Booja Booja’ and home-made frozen fruits blended up as a sorbet are also very tasty and cooling summer snacks, however, the best way to cool the body is actually using spices and hot foods to encourage heat regulation through sweating. (NB: mint or fennel are better food flavourings than hot spices for those fiery types)

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  • Alkalise your body with fresh raw foods; cucumber, greens, celery and fresh juices will help to bring your body into a state of balance so it can cope better with sunshine exposure.

P1030086 P1030087Examples of fresh fruit and vegetable juices

(Left contains: grapefruit, kiwi, pineapple and berries. Right: strawberries, watermelon and cucumber)

  • Be aware of the areas on the body most prone to sunburn; shoulders, nose, feet, ears, chest and anywhere the skin is thin. Oxtinoxate, Octisalate, Oxybenzone and Homosalate are typical sunscreen ingredients that act as either irritants, allergens, hormone disruptors or carcinogens.If you must use sun cream pick a sun block which uses a mineral that sits on top of the skin rather than absorbing into it. Zinc oxide or Titanium dioxide is a safe option and is used in the ‘Burt’s Bees’ sun cream.

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  • Like sun creams, after-sun cream can also contain all sorts of undesirable chemicals you wouldn’t want absorbing into your little one or your own skin. 60% of what you put on your body absorbs directly in to the blood stream so opt for natural Aloe vera to cool sun burn. Later on when the skin has cooled you can use extra virgin raw coconut oil to heal any damage.

Finally, remember the rays can still reach your skin through the clouds, just as well too otherwise we might not get any healing sun exposure through those dreary winter months!

 

 

(Disclaimer: I am not a medical practitioner and do not give medical advice)

Link

My new blog about juicing for pregnancy written for this fantastic new website resource for those interested in having a more healthy and raw pregnancy

30 Apr

My new blog about juicing for pregnancy written for this fantastic new website resource for those interested in having a more healthy and raw pregnancy

A look inside the raw kid’s lunch box

4 Apr

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Looking for some healthy ideas for kid’s lunch boxes? Here is a raw, vegan and allergen free * selection of child friendly yummy delights. Enough to fuel your kid through even the most physically or mentally challenging day out and about. You needn’t include every single option, not only can a fully raw lunch box work out quite expensive but your child may not be ready for such a drastic dietary change either. Experiment and remember the more raw you can add the better for maintaining energy levels and increasing nutrients.

*(except macadamia nuts, tomatoes, miso/tamari (soya based)

Here’s a list of what’s in the raw kid’s lunch box:

  • Pizza flavoured dehydrated kale chips made with Inspiral’s ‘pizzeria’ seasoning available from Infinity Foods, Brighton
  • Trail mix: banana chips, coconut, hemp seeds, goji berries, mulberries, sunflower seeds, currants
  • Cheezy dip made with macadamia nuts, miso, pepper, onion, tomato, garlic and paprika
  • Raw onion dehydrated cracker breads with flax seeds and tamari
  • Olives, vegetable sticks: celery, cucumber and celery. Other options include broccoli/cauliflower florets and slices of pepper
  • Apple (always try to put fresh fruit in that does not need to be pre-cut to avoid nutrient loss)
  • Vanoffee raw cacao bar from The Raw Chocolate Company available in Infinity Foods, Brighton
  • Vita Coco coconut water available from Waitrose

Word of caution: for children prone to dryness in the skin, especially those of a slim constitution; limit the amount of dehydrated and dried raw foods or counter the effect of the drying effect of these foods by adding fat/oily foods alongside them. E.g. avocado or creamy dips with cracker breads and dried chips. You can make the trail mix more hydrating by soaking for at least 30 minutes in water and then draining the dried fruit, nuts and seeds before mixing the ingredients together.

For more information on full recipes of raw food snacks for kids, see the book’ Evie’s Kitchen’ by Shazzie

 

How to boost your family’s health with raw living foods

1 Apr

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Are you a chocoholic? Do you crave sweet and fatty foods? Can you absolutely not live without convenience food?

Great! This makes raw, living foods a perfect addition to enhance your family’s health without having to give up the cravings you yearn for.

Confused how you can achieve such a healthy diet whilst still satisfying your cravings?

I bet the type of foods that came to mind when you read the words ‘living and raw’ were boring salads and vegetable sticks, the kind of foods your kids wouldn’t touch with a barge pole right?

Imagine how easy it would be to get your family eating more healthy if you could give them foods which were sweet, tasty and satisfying as well as being packed with nutrients, reaching over and above the governments recommended ‘5-a-day’ in just one sitting.

What exactly is raw food you may wonder?

Raw food is most commonly defined as non-animal foods consisting of fruit, vegetables, plants such as herbs and greens, nuts, seeds and grains.

Raw food is not necessarily served cold, but has not been heated over 42 degrees Celsius, just above body temperature. This means you can still eat a nice warm dish just as you eat a plate of cooked food that has cooled down and this is still considered raw.

Heating raw food without cooking it above 42 degrees is achieved using high-speed blenders and dehydrators or even ovens on the lowest setting.

Making sure food is not heated above this temperature ensures all the enzymes; vitamins, minerals and nutrients remain intact for optimum digestion and assimilation.

Although comforting and pleasurable to eat, cooked food is recognised by the body as a foreign substance that causes the immune system to launch an attack of white blood cells as if it were an invading toxin. This is why you often feel lethargic, heavy and drained after eating a cooked meal without any raw food added.

You don’t need to go 100% raw all the time to feel the health benefits of living foods. Furthermore you don’t have to dramatically cut out all of your existing comfort foods in one foul swoop. Instead why not try crowding out the ‘baddies’ in your diet by adding in more wholesome raw ‘goodies’ on top.

In this way you will find those undesirable foods will phase out naturally without you having to battle the addictive impulse.

The biggest bonus of adding in more enzyme rich, living foods is the convenience factor. As a vegan, high raw family we now spend far less time preparing food from fresh in the kitchen than most cooks do, perfect for those rushed mornings and exhausted evenings with the kids. When the kids complain they’re starving and just can’t wait, raw food is the answer!

As for those green salads and veggies you can’t get your kids to touch, why not try disguising them in a sweet, freshly juiced green juice. By using apples as the base and adding in a few green vegetables on top such as celery, cucumber and mint leaves, you can make sure they get their vegetable intake without a fuss.

Raw food also offers other clever ways to disguise vegetables such as blended sauces and dips. The most anti-green child has been fooled in to eating avocado by disguising it in an irresistible chocolate dessert!

As for snacks, what better food to have on the go than raw delights which need neither heating nor refrigeration such as a dried fruit and nut breakfast bar.

Here’s a list of my top 5 kid friendly raw delights which are perfect for all dietary needs including allergies to dairy, soya and gluten (with the exception of nuts):

  • Raw banana and strawberry ice cream

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  • Raw fruity cheesecake

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  • Raw chocolate mousse

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  • Raw cheezy spread

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  • Raw pancakes

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Here are a few simple ideas to add in raw food to your existing diet:

Breakfast:

Add a banana with freshly blended coconut milk smoothie using fresh coconut meat added with water to a high-speed blender. Flavour with carob powder and dates for sweetness. (In addition lion heart herbs super smoothie mix will add a super nutrient punch)

Lunch:

Add a rainbow-grated salad to your meal consisting of fresh and grated carrot, beetroot, fennel and yellow courgette. You can also mix and match fruit in the salad such as sultanas with the carrots and apple with the beetroot. There seems to be something special about grating up these sorts of vegetables that makes them more appetising for kids.

Dinner:

Add a sweet green juice as a starter with apples as a base and any selection of green leafy vegetables such as kale or spinach, celery, cucumber and carrots. Juicing a small amount of beetroot (one-quarter of a beet) will add a nice deep red colour to disguise the green colour of the juice.

There you have it, don’t take anything else out of your diet. Simply try adding in some of the suggestions and watch what happens!

(If you want to read more on the amazing benefits of raw food for kids and learn how to create naturally healthy treats for your children, I recommend reading the following book: Raw food 4 kids by Sarah Nolan)

Eat Naturally

2 Feb

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When a baby grows inside its mum it begins life as a liquidarian. Everything the mum eats  is first processed by the adult body before being delivered via the placenta as a complete liquid meal, in the form of blood. The meal is served direct to the baby at the optimum active enzyme temperature  of around 37 degrees.

Following birth and a short period of fasting to deal with the trauma of entering a foreign world, your baby is then designed to begin a diet of mother’s breast milk. Breast milk is much like the blood which baby received whilst in the womb, a whole food in liquid state with a full complement of nutrients and active enzymes alongside an optimum serving temperature of around 37 degrees, body temperature.

This way of delivering food is how your body gets the most nourishment. When people eat a solid food diet, fibre is also necessary to aid in sweeping the gut but essentially your body can only absorb and use the liquid component of food, this is why proper chewing is so important to good digestion. Furthermore, if you have consumed foods that are not in their natural state or devoid of their accompanying live digestive enzymes then the body will react in defence. This is to say the body will have to  use it’s stored nutrient supplies to construct its own digestive enzymes in order to be able to process the food. Scientific studies have shown an increase in white blood cell count after consuming cooked food in to the body, therefore indicating an immune attack towards food delivered in an altered state, devoid of enzymes, or some may say life. (www.rawfoodinfo.com/articles/art_leukocytosisandcooked.html)

Most health care practitioners agree that a baby should not receive anything other than breast milk for at least the first 4-6 months of life. This recommendation used to be a minimum of six months, correlating with the appearance of most babies first teeth.

Now for the feeding topics the experts can’t all agree on…..

1. Should babies be weaned at around 4-6 months, or is the appearance of the first few teeth to be taken as a sign that the immune system is ready for solid food?

2. What age should animal products be introduced, if at all?

3. Should it be the parents or the child itself (baby-led weaning) who decide when to introduce solid food?

4. What is the healthiest diet for a child; meat, dairy, vegetarian, vegan or raw?

Firstly you must consider whether your baby is getting what they need from your milk. I met a woman in Australia whose daughter did not move on to solid foods until 18 months old, she was developing quite healthily with the breast milk she had been given on demand.

An important question to ask yourself is ‘Do they seem healthy?’  Assessed not only by weight charts representing the general bottle fed population but also recognised by the glow of their skin and eyes and level of general contentment.

Secondly, when considering animal products in the diet you may wish to consider what you feel your baby will gain from these foods. Harvard university has now published a long-term study indicating that dairy is a unnecessary and detrimental part of our human diet. (www.nutritionmd.org/nutrition_tips_understand_foods/dairy.html)

Dairy has been linked with many diseases such as osteoporosis and coronary heart failure. We humans remain the only species unweaned from other animals breast milk which is simply not designed for humans. Calcium is abundantly supplied in many leafy green vegetables such as collards and also legumes, nuts and seeds.

With regards to considering protein needs you may wish to consider the strength and vitality of the herbivore animals who consume only plant matter. These include such animals as the gorilla, elephant, cow and horse to name but a few.

Complete sources of high protein which far outweigh any animal product include spirulina, goji berries, maca, blue-green algae and hemp seed. (wwwfredericpatenaude.com/interview-wolfe.html)

You might also consider how vitamin B12 is produced before fearing its potential deficiency. Herbivore animals such as the aforementioned make B12 in their guts, aided by raw plant matter which they consume daily. Humans too have this capability to produce B12 in the gut. The only obstacle to this is an unclean gut wall. The stores of this vitamin can last up to 7 years but the long-term solution for ensuring sufficient amounts is to clean out the gut through detoxing with fresh fruit and vegetables, juices and smoothies, herbs and colonic cleanses.

Thirdly, the consideration of whether parent or child decides when to wean will be dictated by many relationship factors including trust and patience. This question no one can answer for you. In my experience, extended on-demand breastfeeding relationships lead on easily and naturally to baby-led weaning. There is a sense of trust that your baby is receiving everything they need from their liquid diet which helps to allow time to be taken for a slow transition on to solids.

It is important to recognise that whatever diet you as the mother have eaten during pregnancy and whilst breastfeeding, your baby will get a taste for. If your baby has been raised on formula milk they will then be left with a palate which craves artificially manufactured foods. This makes it difficult but not impossible to move on to a living and whole foods diet.

We parents all know it is difficult to encourage your child to do anything that we ourselves are not doing by example. We must practice what we preach with regards to a healthy diet and be the change we want to see in our children.

Health experts agree that for optimum health and well-being every person would do best to include as many fresh fruits and vegetables in our diets as possible.

Furthermore, a landmark study in the UK has recently concluded in 2011 that the optimum nutrient content, especially vitamin C levels, comes in the form of organic. There is also the added benefit of fewer harmful chemicals being ingested. (www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07352689.2011.554417)

With regards to our food being ‘fresh’, the more local and seasonal the food the quicker the transition will be from being picked to arriving at your mouth. Also fresh signifies how long ago the food was prepared.

Lets now summarise all the factors which constitute a healthy diet:

1. As much fresh, home-made, local and seasonal produce as possible.

2. As much organic food as possible for maximum nutrition, if you live on a budget like me then you may want to consider using the following list to select your produce.

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3. As much food containing its own digestive enzymes as possible, eliminating stress on the immune system.

To sum up these three points you could conclude that the more raw and organic, local and seasonal food you can freshly prepare and get in to you and your families diet, the better your health will be.

So the next question is how do get more raw and living foods into the diet. Raw food can be as fancy as this…….

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(photos provided by Matt Allen, http://www.theyogahealthcoach.co.uk )

…or as simple as adding in daily salads and juicing or green smoothies alongside your existing diet.

Teaching you little one how to juice/blend smoothies will help create a love of fresh food for life as well as being a perfect tool for the weaning process.

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Juices made fresh in your own slow masticating juicer and smoothies fresh from the blender for optimum nutrition are very different in quality to those ‘fresh’ pasteurized (highly heated) juices and smoothies you may have been buying from your supermarket. Most of the vitamins and all of the active digestive enzymes have all been killed in these juices leaving little behind but expensive sugared water.

Next time you’re out shopping and find your little one has been drawn to one of those brightly coloured convenience food pouches remember this….it may have started off as organic fresh fruit and vegetables but what is now left after pasteurisation and storage to reach you in an edible form is simply dead fruit or vegetable matter, much like those pre-made juices and smoothies we were just talking about.

This kind of  food and drink has little nutrient quality and quantity to help your little one grow and remain healthy. The rule I like to live by when shopping, if its got a long list of ingredients and/or any obscure chemical names that sound like another language then you are probably better of making your own food from scratch.

I have raised Ulysses, pictured above now 3 years on a living, high-raw foods diet whilst transitioning myself slowly on to a high raw, vegan diet (with the exception of bee products).