Central Coast farmers markets: your guide to shopping supermarket-free

If you’ve never ventured outside of the supermarket for your food on a regular basis, it can be quite a daunting transition at the outset, especially if you don’t know what the alternatives are. Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been discussing the myriad of benefits that come with purchasing the bulk of your food in season from local producers and this week we’re focusing on how to change up your shopping habits.

If you’re reading this as a Central Coast resident, rest assured that this transition might be easier than you’d think. You may not have even been aware of the fact that we are living in a food bowl! Unbeknownst to many locals, we’re surrounded by passionate small-scale farmers in the fertile coast hinterland who are producing some of the best quality produce and animal products right at our doorstep.

Here are some of the options available as you start to think outside the supermarket aisles.

Central Coast farmers markets

A...

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Getting started with seasonal eating

In last week’s column we explored some of the benefits associated with seasonal eating. This week we’re focusing on how to gradually master the process.

It’s ironic that reacquainting ourselves with such a simple, age-old tradition can require some initial effort. Before the development of such efficient global transport systems, seasonal and local foods were the only ones on offer.

After only a few decades of relying on supermarkets for our food, we’ve lost touch with the knowledge and skills required to eat this way. Most people no longer possess any awareness of which foods are in season or even an inherent understanding of the fact that most produce and even many animal foods, do in fact have a season!

We’ve been sold the idea that we can have whatever we want all year round, when this is not how nature works. Supermarkets perpetuate this illusion by responding to consumer demand for apples, oranges and bananas every single day of the year.

If we...

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The untold benefits of seasonal eating

As we move into Autumn, I thought it might be nice to take this, my second favorite seasonal transition of the year (nothing beats Winter to Spring!), as an opportunity to explore the untold benefits of seasonal eating.

Once upon a time, I had no idea where my food came from, other than knowing the location of the supermarket and the shelf I found it on. The concept of seasonal eating was merely a romantic notion that conjured up visions of pumpkin or apple pie in Autumn.

When I started on my journey to get closer to the source of where my food came from, I had no way to fathom the transformation that lay ahead. It’s been life-changing, let me tell you!

Seasonal and local eating has become one of the most important pieces of health advice that I can offer people. It’s central to everything I teach about food and nutrition. If you were to focus solely on this one idea, striving to eat seasonally, sourcing from local producers, it has the power to transform not only your...

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Soul food: my dairy-free chocolate mud cream

We’re midway through a six-part guide to feeling good. Thus far, we’ve explored the importance of breathing, sleep, rest, pleasure, human connection and this week we’re focusing on ‘soul’ food.

Now, before we get into all the chocolatey details, I want to talk a little about the importance of soul food from my perspective.

Having spent a couple of decades in search of the best diet for humans and in the process, experimented with the bulk of the dietary and detox protocols out there, I can tell you firsthand that overly restrictive eating isn’t the best path to feeling good.

Naturally, eating well is important, however for some, it can be a slippery slope to becoming obsessive or fixated on compartmentalising foods as ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

The importance of soul food

One thing I’ve come to know is that soul food, whether it’s homemade or even the processed store-bought variety (gasp!), is an extremely important...

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Beetroot: the humble mood booster

We’re midway through a six-part guide to feeling good. Thus far, we’ve explored the importance of breathing, sleep, rest, pleasure, human connection and the nutritionist in me feels compelled to indulge in a couple of posts about food and mood.

Researchers now believe that many mood disorders, including depression, are not just brain disorders, but whole-body disorders, with chronic, low-grade systemic inflammation as a major risk factor.

Chronic inflammation arises as a result of many of the environmental stressors that we’ve talked about, such as poor diet and sleep, sedentary lifestyle, stress, negative thinking habits – all the usual culprits that you probably already know are important to address.

All of these factors influence our gut bacteria, which are critical to virtually every aspect of health including our brain function and mental health.

Beetroot to the rescue

The humble beetroot is a vegetable that in my experience is sorely overlooked by many...

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Breathing and Sleep: A Holistic Dentist's Perspective

children's health Feb 01, 2021

This week in our ‘guide to feeling good’ series, we’re talking to my good friend, holistic Dentist Dr Vijaya Molloy. She is the owner and Principal Dentist of Vitality Dental here on the Central Coast.

Vijaya has trained across many areas of Dentistry including Orthodontics, Implants, Sleep Apnoea, Acupuncture, Cosmetic Dentistry and Nutrition and is passionate about taking a whole-body approach to dental care.

Breathing and Sleep by Dr Vijaya Molloy

The pursuit of wellness is a common theme in many people’s lives.  I think we’d all agree our mental wellbeing is elevated when we have the physical and mental capacity to pursue our lives to the fullest, whatever that personal definition may be.

Within my practice I encounter a number of people that have spent many years battling with chronic exhaustion. In these patients, often their breathing and sleep have not been checked.   In my opinion the two go hand in hand. 

Breathing

One of...

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Why your vagus nerve is the key to wellbeing

Uncategorized Jan 18, 2021

This is part two in our ‘guide to feeling good’.

Essentially, we’re stepping outside of the reductionist ‘diet plus exercise equals health’ paradigm and focusing on left-of-centre hacks to alter our biochemistry, physiology, mood and outlook.

Last week we touched on the idea that there’s a whole range of fun pastimes that we can indulge in to help us achieve our health goals from a different angle. Things like rest, pleasure and human connection.

This week we’re exploring the role of the vagus nerve, why it’s central to feeling good and how understanding its structure and function opens up even more exciting ways to improve our health.

What is the vagus nerve?

The vagus nerve is one of the longest nerves in the body and is so named because it wanders like a vagabond from the brain, all over the body, wrapping around every organ along the way. It controls our parasympathetic nervous system and can be thought of as a major highway...

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A guide to feeling good

Why your nervous system is key 

Greetings Coasties. I do hope you’ve enjoyed a relaxing break at some point over Summer. Granted our suntans may not be on par with previous years, but it does seem that many folks, restricted in their movements and unable to indulge in regular holiday festivities, enjoyed a simpler and perhaps more mindful break this year.

These unusual times have me contemplating how deeply intertwined our health, happiness and mindset, really are. It’s more apparent than ever that our external circumstances are often entirely outside of our control. However, our physical health, along with our mood, outlook and state of mind, are predominantly an inside job. And there are ways we can continue to feel good – great, even – despite what’s happening around us.

Although my teachings generally centre around food and nutrition, one thing I’m constantly harping on about is that when it comes to health, food is only one small piece...

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How vitamin K2 fuels jaw growth

This week we’re hearing from my friend, local Dentist Dr Steven Lin who practices out of Luminous Dentistry in Long Jetty. He’s the author of the international best-seller, ‘The Dental Diet’ which touches on many of the dietary concepts we’ve been discussing over the past few weeks – namely, the importance of returning to a diet based on traditional foods, based on the findings of pioneering Dentist, Dr Weston Price.

Steven and I are equally passionate about the oft-overlooked vitamin K2 and this article expands on my introduction of this important nutrient from last week.

How Vitamin K2 Fuels Jaw Growth, by Dr Steven Lin

One of the biggest problems of modern dentistry has been a failure to address the cause of crooked teeth. However, as we’ll find out, nutritional science has misunderstood the vitamin that caused the problem in the first place.

Today, at least 75% of kids have some level of dental malocclusion. Many patients ask me,...

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Are you getting enough vitamin K2?

We’re mid-way through a discussion of the work of Dr Weston A. Price, who studied the diets of traditional people and found them to be almost entirely responsible for their near-perfect health.

Activator X: a missing nutrient

In his research, Dr Price discovered a fat-soluble vitamin he called ‘Activator X’, which we now know to be vitamin K2. He referred to it as an activator because, as we discussed last week, like vitamins A and D, it’s an important catalyst which helps the body absorb and utilise minerals.

Price observed that “people of the past obtained a substance that modern generations do not have” and that its absence from the diet could explain many of our modern diseases. He was able to reverse dental decay and cure degenerative conditions in his patients by supplementing foods rich in this nutrient – the foods that all traditional cultures revered as sacred: animal fats, eggs, concentrated forms of dairy like butter and cheese,...

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