Free 10 minute Health Consults

Free Naturopathic Consult

We believe that bodies and minds thrive when given the right ingredients. We are dedicated to boosting our community wellbeing and this is why our brilliant practitioners are offering free 10 minute health consults with our naturopaths and nutritionists.

These sessions are designed to help anyone wanting preventative wellness strategies for immunity, symptomatic relief for acute conditions and general health enquiries. You will , of course, be referred if needed for more complex issues or conditions.

With health there is endless possibility, multiple angles for fine tuning and a plethora of ways to start to feel better. We want to help you feel your radiant vitality shining through.

Register for your free digital consult

Simply head to our bookings page, scroll to Naturopathy or Nutrition and choose ‘Free 10 minute consult PHONE/ONLINE’

Which practitioners are offering free 10 minute health consults now?

 

Josephine CabrallJosephine Cabrall Fertile Ground Health Group Free 10 minute health consults

Josephine is an experienced, degree-qualified naturopath and trained fertility teacher specialising in fertility, reproductive health and pregnancy. She uses nutrition, dietary strategies, herbal medicine and lifestyle advice, to help her patients achieve their goals and is passionate about working collaboratively with other health care providers for the best outcomes of the patient.

Understanding the importance of a supportive and empathic support team through the fertility and IVF journey, Josephine aims to meet her patients where they are at, giving them strategies and resources to achieve the best outcomes possible.

Josephine also enjoys helping patients with gut health, thyroid health and stress reduction, recognising the impact of these conditions can have on both fertility and general health.

As well as general fertility, Josephine has a special interest in polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Acknowledging the different presentations of PCOS, she relishes in seeing women improve their fertility and other hormonal symptoms through individualised, tailored treatment plans. To help women better understand and combat PCOS, Josephine has authored an eBook, The PCOS Solution, as well as the Guide to PCOS & Diet – which she generously makes available for free – download here.

Book your free 10 minute health consult with Naturopath, Josephine.

 

Sage King

Sage King Fertile Ground Health Group Free 10 minute health consults

Sage is a diversity-friendly, passionate practitioner who provides quality healthcare for all individuals within the community. With her empathetic and dedicated approach, she aims to guide and educate her clients through an evidence-based model to reach their health goals.

Using nutrition, herbal medicine, dietary and lifestyle advice, Sage specialises in providing naturopathic care for hormonal and reproductive health, preconception care, fertility (female, male, non-binary, & transgender), IVF, ICSI, & ART Support, & pregnancy. Sage also enjoys assisting patients with gut and vaginal microbiome health, gastrointestinal disturbances, stress and mood support, metabolic health, and thoroughly enjoys working with queer individuals, couples, families, sex workers, and single women.

Sage understands the importance of thorough investigation into your personal health history to holistically determine the underlying factors contributing to your presentation, to optimise long-term health outcomes. In order to do this, Sage uses in-depth case taking and testing, and believes it is essential to collaborate with you and your other health care providers to holistically assess and manage your health and wellness goals. She has written a 6-part series to help individuals and couples of all gender identities and sexual orientations confidently navigate their fertility journey and create their own fertility plan.

Book your free 10 minute health consult with Naturopath, Sage.

 

Georga Holt

Georga Holt Fertile Ground Health Group Free 10 minute health consults

Do you want better general health? Do you experience digestive, hormonal, and/or skin issues? Are you suffering the effects of stress, anxiety or lacking in sleep? Georga is passionate about helping you become the healthiest version of yourself. She works with diet therapy, lifestyle modification, herbal medicine and nutritional therapeutics to help you find relief from those niggling health issues that stop you from performing at your best and living your radiant life.

One of the aspects of Naturopathy that Georga absolutely loves is the integrated and holistic model that identifies humans as a whole and intricately woven system – not simply a cluster of isolated symptoms to be treated separately. She really hones in on how to resolve what is going on for you in a comprehensive way that not only feels good to receive (as we all enjoy being seen in our totality) but also provides healthy long-term outcomes.

Georga specifically enjoys working with digestive health (including IBS, IBD and food intolerances), skin (including acne and hormonal breakouts, eczema and psoriasis) and hormonal issues (especially PMS, painful and irregular periods). She has helped many people get through exams with nervous system and adrenal nourishment and loves to help people get a better night’s sleep too.

Book your free 10 minute health consult with Naturopath, Georga.

 

Jane Holland

Jane Holland Fertile Ground Health Group Free 10 minute health consults

Renowned for her grounded and intuitive approach to health, Jane is a holistic nutritionist, yoga teacher and retreat facilitator who is passionate about empowering people to cultivate a healthy and honest relationship with food, eating and their body. Jane brings awareness and reverence into her sessions and is dedicated to listening and supporting her clients to unravel the subconscious patterns of behaviour which drive decision making (particularly in relation to food and eating).

Jane is deeply committed to building community and creating safe and supportive spaces for people to live more harmoniously within their inner and outer environments.

Jane carries degree level qualifications in both Environmental Management (Sustainable Development) and Health Science (Nutritional Medicine) and is trained in both Hatha and Yin Yoga (400hrs Teacher Training certifications). She is also a Food & Spirit practitioner and Emotional Anatomy coach, integrating Eastern and Western philosophies in a wholistic approach to wellness. Jane uses her technical knowledge and understanding in these modalities, together with her deep insight and intuition, to ignite profound and lasting transformation for her clients.

Book your free 10 minute health consult with Holistic Nutritionist, Jane.

Alongside nutrition consultations, Jane also offers Yin Yoga for Deep Sleep classes every Monday night. Your first class is FREE.

Emily Macfarlane

Free 10 minute health consults

Emily’s particular areas of interest include enhancing your energy and vitality, rectifying sleep issues, fine-tuning gut health, and optimising hormonal, thyroid and metabolic health. She appreciates the importance of strengthening the relationship between body and mind, and understands that fostering an integrated awareness to tune in to that dual expression can provide strong foundations that keep your health steady. Emily holds a strong belief that your body has an innate ability to heal itself and uses both herbal and nutritional medicine as well as dietary and lifestyle advice to gently and simply support your body to move toward its optimal function.

Emily regularly integrates self-care practices into her prescriptions by teaching her clients about the importance of mindful eating, movement, meditation and rest. She believes that when we respect our bodies by prioritising self-care vibrant health will follow.

Access Emily’s free ebook on energy and vitality to inspire action at home and support your sleep, digestion, hormones, energy and improve the quality of life that you are living on a daily basis.

Book your free 10 minute health consult with Naturopath, Emily.

Zucchini, fig and goat’s cheese salad

by Joanne Sharkey, FGHG acupuncturist

In Chinese medicine theory, eating seasonal food is an important part of gaining balance and health and encourages us to live harmoniously in our natural environment. Eating cucumbers and mint in summer will cool you down, and in winter eating pumpkin soup with ginger and garlic will help you feel warm and satisfied, and guess what cucumbers and mint grow in summer as does pumpkin in winter. The best way to buy seasonal fruit and veg is to buy what is in abundance and cheap at your local green grocer and supermarket, or if you grow your own you will easily know if it’s in season or not!

I easily knew the fruit and vegetable in this salad were in season as the zucchini, figs, mint and chilli came from my garden. This salad is full of fibre and flavour. The sweetness of the figs, contrasts the saltiness of the Goat’s cheese, the sourness of the lime, the freshness of the mint and the heat of the chilli. Fibre from fruit and veggies helps us feel full and satisfied, while being food for our beneficial gut bacteria. This salad will also help you meet your daily requirements for beneficial minerals and vitamins such as potassium, calcium, folate and vitamin C.

Jo's zucchini saladIngredients

3-4 zucchinis, cut into ribbons, using a wide vegetable peeler
a handful of mint leaves
2-3 Figs, chopped
1 fresh chilli (or to taste), finely sliced
juice of half a lime
2 tablespoons of olive oil
A handful of roasted almonds, chopped
50g Goats cheese (or more, to taste)
Salt and pepper, to taste

Simply place all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Serve with grilled or panfried salmon, a poached egg or lightly fried tofu.

Fresh salmon patties with yoghurt sauce and green salad

Recipe by Rhiannon Hardingham, FGHG Naturopath and Nutritionist

This delicious and easy to prepare meal is so full of flavour and goodness that you’ll want to make it over and over again!

 

Fresh Salmon Patties with yoghurt sauce

Makes 12 large patties, to provide 6 serves.

These are a great way to sneak fish and greens into kids or fussy adults who are not usually a fan.

Salmon is an excellent source of protein, as well as omega 3 fats. Try to get Atlantic salmon if possible but otherwise Tasmanian salmon will do just fine.

By cooking and cooling the potato, you turn 50% of the starch into what is called ‘resistant starch’: a high quality fibre that is both good for your digestion, but also lowers the glycaemic load of the potato by half.

These make an excellent main meal, or individual patties make great snacks through the day.

560g skinless salmon fillet

400g potato, roughly chopped

1 celery heart, finely chopped to make about 1 cup

fresh parsley and/or dill, finely chopped to make about 1 cup

1 small red onion grated, or 5 spring onions, finely chopped

zest of 1 lemon, finely grated

1 cup fresh sourdough wholemeal or GF breadcrumbs

3 egg, whisked

salt & pepper to taste

flour for dusting

olive oil for frying

Steam salmon fillets until just cooked through. Meanwhile, boil potatoes until tender. Combine in a large bowl, mash together, and season with salt & pepper. Set aside to cool completely.

Once cooled, add celery, fresh herbs, onion, lemon zest, breadcrumbs, whisked egg, and further salt and pepper to taste. Combine.

Form into 12 patties, dusting with flour. Place in refrigerator for about 30 minutes until firm, and then fry in olive oil over medium heat until golden and cooked through. Rest on kitchen paper to absorb excess oil, and then serve with yoghurt sauce and a large green salad.

Keeps well in the fridge for 3 days, and makes excellent lunches or snacks.

Yoghurt Sauce

Combine greek yoghurt with chopped fresh mint or dill.

Green Salad

serves 2

2 handfuls of rocket leaves

1 medium zucchini, finely chopped (I use the slicing side of a box grater).

large handful of snow or sugar snap peas,

1/2 firm avocado, chopped into 1/2 cm dice

1/4 cup pepitas

handful of picked leaves of fresh herbs of your choice (parsley, mint or dill are all perfect)

Dressing

juice of 1 lemon

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

good slug of olive oil

salt & pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Dress salad and toss.

Quinoa Salad with Yoghurt Dressing

by Tina Jenkins, FGHG Natruopath

This recipe is one of my all-time favourites! It is great anytime of the year and is a real powerhouse of nutrients. It’s also such a beautiful looking dish to serve up to guests with the gorgeous greens of the fresh herbs and the bright red pomegranate seeds.

The recipe below is a modified version of George CaIombaris’ Cypriot Salad (from his Hellenic Republic restaurant). I have changed the grain to quinoa (instead of freekah) for more protein and left out the honey in the dressing to reduce the sugar content.

The greens in the salad are rich in folate and antioxidants which are important nutrients to support a healthy conception and pregnancy, whilst the nuts and seeds are high in zinc (great for sperm health!), magnesium and fibre. There is another anti-oxidant hit with the delicious pomegranate seeds on top and some beneficial gut bugs in the form of probiotics if you use a good quality yoghurt (not to mention the additional protein and calcium in the yoghurt).

It is a really delicious crunchy salad and pairs well with a slow cooked lamb or grilled fish. It’s also a great vegetarian dish on its own with the protein from quinoa and the lentils (the latter also being a vegetarian source of iron). Enjoy!

Quinoa Salad with Yoghurt Dressing

Ingredients:

1 bunch coriander, chopped

1/2 bunch parsley, chopped

1/2 red onion, finely diced

1 cup quinoa

1/2 cup Puy lentils

2 tbsp toasted pumpkin seeds

2 tbsp toasted slivered almonds

2 tbsp toasted pine nuts

2 tbsp baby capers

1/2 cup currants

Juice of 1 lemon

3 tbsp extra virgin olive

Sea salt to taste

1 pomegranate, deseeded, to serve

Dressing

1 cup thick Greek yoghurt

1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground

 

Method

Cook quinoa and lentils separately in boiling water until both just cooked. Drain well and allow to cool.

In a hot pan toast the nuts and seeds. Remove and allow to cool.

In a medium bowl mix the salad ingredients (except pomegranate) and season to taste.

Top with mixed cumin & yoghurt dressing and pomegranate seeds.

 

For the original recipe by George Calombaris click here – Cypriot grain salad

Figs and Goats cheese on wholegrain sourdough

by Rhiannon Hardingham, FGHG Naturopath

Figs are just coming into season, and they are a fabulous fruit indeed. High in magnesium, calcium, B6 and fibre, they are a bit of a ‘super fruit’. Add them to the complex low-GI carbs of a good quality wholegrain spelt sourdough, the protein of a quality fresh cheese and the blood glucose balancing benefits of cinnamon, and you’ve got yourself a well balanced, nutritious sweet breakfast option. Just don’t go too heavy on the honey!

Serves 2

Ingredients
  • A good quality whole grain sourdough loaft (I used a spelt & buckwheat loaf)
  • Soft goats cheese or curd (labne, ricotta or cottage cheese also work well)
  • 4-5 fresh, perfectly ripe figs
  • Raw honey, for drizzling
  • Ground cinnamon, to taste
  • Some fresh mint or thyme leaves from the garden, if you have them
Put it all together

Simply toast 2 slices of your quality wholegrain sourdough, spread generously with goats cheese, top with quartered fresh figs, drizzle with raw honey, and finish of with a sprinkle of cinnamon powder and some picked fresh herb leaves.

 

Rhiannon-Hardingham_1Rhiannon Hardingham is a naturopath and nutritionist with a passion for food, fertility and pregnancy care. Specialising in male and female infertility, IVF support and naturopathic care during pregnancy, Rhiannon offers her patients a wealth of information and knowlege regarding nutritional, herbal, diet and lifestyle support during their journey. She also offers education and mentoring to naturopaths wanting to improve their fertility knowledge or upskill into the highly specialised area of IVF support.

Freekeh superfood salad with Persian feta

By Gina Fox, FGHG Naturopath
– based on recipe from Oxfam website

Freekeh is a superfood. It is an ancient form of wheat made from young, whole-grain, green wheat kernels that have been roasted and sun-dried. This gives it a lovely nutty, slightly smokey flavour and because the wheat is so young when it’s harvested, it holds plenty of nutritional value. Freekeh is very high in protein and fibre, which helps you feel full and satisfied, whilst also being great for beneficial gut bugs, supporting healthy digestion and keeping you regular. It is also rich in minerals such as magnesium, zinc, potassium, and iron – essential for good health.

Being packed with nutrition and flavour, this freekeh salad is sure to add health to any meal, without compromising on taste. It pairs well with roast meats, fish, roasted eggplant slices, roasted chickpeas, grilled haloumi cheese, lamb koftas or meatballs but it’s also filling enough to have a stand alone dish. What’s more, its super easy and can be made in a big batch to feed a group or help get you through the week. You can find Freekeh at most health food stores and supermarkets, in the grains section.

Ingredients
  • 1 cup freekeh
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 6 tbs toasted pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup currants
  • 1/4 cup barberries (optional)
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/3 bunch mint, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 bunch flat leaf parsley or equivalent baby spinach leaves, roughly chopped
  • 100g Persian feta
Dressing
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 tbs preserved lemon, finely chopped
Method
  • Bring stock to the boil, add freekeh and cook until tender or the stock is absorbed, approximately 20 mins.
  • Remove freekeh and allow to cool.
  • In a bowl, combine freekeh (breaking up any lumps), pine nuts, currants, red onion, mint and parsley or baby spinach leaves.
  • Combine dressing ingredients and pour over.

Rhiannon’s Roasted Chilli and Dill Salmon with Mustard Dressing

A common question in clinic when discussing healthy eating strategies is ‘how do I cook fish?!’ Lots of people are nervous about cooking seafood, but it doesn’t have to be tricky.

This roasted salmon recipe is so easy and super healthy. Loaded with lots of protein, plenty of greens, good fats and low GI carbs.

Ingredients: 

For the roast salmon:

2 x 150g salmon portions

chilli flakes, sea salt, extra virgin olive oil

 

For the salad:

4 large handfuls of mixed salad greens

2 handfuls roasted pumpkin

handful of mung bean sprouts

 

For the dressing:

50g full fat natural yoghurt

1/2 tsp seeded mustard

– stir to combine

 

To serve:

fresh dill

lemon

olive oil

 

Serves 2

 

Instructions:

Pre heat oven to 190C.

Place salmon on lined roasting tray, and top with chilli flakes and salt. Drizzle with a little olive oil, and roast in oven until medium-rare (approximately 7 minutes).

Meanwhile, divide salad ingredients into 2 large bowls.

Place roasted salmon over salad, drizzle with olive oil, lemon and finish off with fresh dill. Serve with yoghurt mustard dressing.

 

L9999600Recipe by Rhiannon Hardingham, FGHG Naturopath and Nutritionist

Rhiannon is passionate about good food that is not only nutritious and easy to make, but most importantly delicious! As a busy naturopath Rhiannon understands the challenges that many of her patients face when trying to incorporate healthy eating into their own busy lifestyle.

Rhiannon constantly inspires us with her yummy lunches at work and now as a regular recipe contributor, shares with us how eating the right balance of nutrients in a meal can be easy and super tasty.

Food Cravings – what are you really craving?

Food cravings with Jane Holland

Food cravings come in all tastes and sizes. Have you ever walked past a bakery early in the morning and spied the rows of croissants in the window and found yourself thinking about nothing else but those buttery flaky pastries for rest of the day??

Or perhaps you’ve arrived at the end of a busy afternoon and found yourself thinking of nothing else but the moment when you can crack open the cupboard and dig your hand into a packet of salty crunchy crisp chips??

Or perhaps after dinner when you’re winding down, your mind becomes filled with the idea of biting into a delicious chunk of chocolate, that sweet goodness bringing you some kind of wild euphoria…

Chances are, if you are a human, you have experienced some form of food craving.

In fact, surveys suggest that up to 90% of women and 70% of men have experienced food cravings at some point during their life (Magee 2005).

Food cravings can be defined as an intense desire to consume a particular food, differentiating it from a feeling of hunger, which can be alleviated by consumption of any type of food (Muele 2020).

The Complexities

And it’s more complicated than you might think! We tend to think food cravings are driven by a primal instinct to stay alive, an evolutionary advantage embedded in our genes. And while that’s partly true, what is now also known, is that areas of the brain responsible for memory and sensing pleasure are also partially to blame (i.e. conditioned responses to stimuli), as well as a need to satisfy emotional states, such as calming stress and reducing anxiety. In other words, it’s complex.

When our needs are not being met – physiologically, emotionally, mentally, or energetically – our natural impulse is to rectify this. In other words, when we are ‘out of alignment’, we will find a way to bring ourselves ‘into’ alignment. Our brain can’t always differentiate between fulfilling needs in a resourceful versus unresourceful way, however, so if we are not aware of the ways we have learnt to ‘fulfil’ these needs (i.e. we have learnt to do something that brings relief but not necessarily long-term satisfaction), we will continue to repeat this behaviour over and over again, despite our seemingly ‘conscious’ desire to change it.

Mindfulness for Food Craving

Mindfulness, and self-awareness through sensation and the body, are some of the ways to bring us back into deep connection with our intuitive self. From here, we can respond to our needs in a more honest way, rather than a reactionary, automated way. But it’s tricky business. The parts of us that work to protect us (often formed during childhood or adolescence to ‘meet the needs’) might feel fear or hesitation or resistance to a different response, which can lead to more dissonance and contraction if we are not willing to listen and be ‘in relationship’ with them! Simply put, in order to understand our needs, we need to engage with them in a compassionate and honest way, to find out how we can support them (and ourselves) in a more resourceful way.

Stopping the Self-Punishment

As we bring more awareness to these needs and honour our deeper stirrings and get curious about the places where we are betraying ourselves, our physical body changes too. Instead of punishing or banishing the parts of us that crave chocolate after dinner, or eat a whole wheel of cheese at the party, or yearn for a hot cross bun smeared with butter, we start to notice that actually, those parts just wanted to feel safe in that moment, or connected, or loved.

Over time, as we integrate and listen to our different parts, our behaviour changes too. Learning to notice and feel what we are truly craving, fulfilling our needs and honouring our intuition leads to deep and lasting changes. It just requires deep compassion, radical honesty and a willingness to listen.

Written by Jane Holland, respected holistic Nutritionist at The Melbourne Apothecary, renowned international retreat facilitator, adored Deep Sleep Yin Yoga teacher.

Book in with Jane to understand and reshape your food story, build a healthy relationship with your food and body, and create behaviours in your life that support your healthiest self. (Jane is currently offering free 10 minute Nutrition consults to help you take action – when booking navigate to heading Nutrition > Free 10 min consult > Jane Holland)

References

Meule, A. Twenty Years of the Food Cravings Questionnaires: a Comprehensive Review. Curr Addict Rep 7, 30–43 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40429-020-00294-z

Magee, E. The Facts About Food Cravings, WebMD (2005). https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-facts-about-food-cravings#1

Zucchini and Chilli Pepita Salad

Zucchini Salad with Josephine Cabrall from Fertile Ground Health Group

Zucchini and chilli pepita salad is a simple dish that I love for shoulder seasons where we are still having some nice days but the weather is getting colder. It’s still got a lot of freshness about it but the grilled zucchini is easier to digest than raw salad and the chilli pepitas give it some warmth. The lemon, dill and feta really get your tastebuds going.

This dish is super yummy as a BBQ side salad with just about every type of protein – fish, tofu, tempeh, chicken, red meat, falafel, chickpea or lentil burgers. If I have some leftover I often have it for breakfast on a slice of dense wholegrain bread with a poached egg on top.

Zucchinis are very high in fibre, which feeds beneficial gut bacteria and helps you to feel full and satisfied, as well as aiding healthy bowel movements. They are also very low in carbohydrate. All of these things are great for hormone balancing, general health and are compatible with a PCOS diet, if that is what you are aiming for. Being dark green in colour, they are a natural source of antioxidants and folate, making them great for fertility and pregnancy.

Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) add a good source of zinc – helpful for skin, hair, immunity, fertility and so much more.

Ingredients
  • 4 large zucchinis, sliced lengthwise
  • A large handful of pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • A pinch (or more as desired) of cayenne pepper (chilli powder)
  • Half a bunch of fresh dill, leaves picked
  • 30-40g of goat’s chevre or goat’s feta
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
Method

Brush zucchini slices with olive oil and cook them on a grill plate until soft and browned, flipping halfway. You could also roast them in a 200 degree oven on trays (don’t overcrowd the trays or they’ll go soggy before they brown).

Toast the pepitas in a fry pan with a splash of olive oil, pinch of salt and the cayenne pepper until just starting to go light brown, then remove from heat to cool on a plate.

Assemble the salad by tossing the zucchini with the dill, lemon and olive oil, crumbling the feta on top and sprinkling over the pepitas.

Want more? Download your free PCOS & diet guide, filled with delicious and healthy recipes specifically for people with PCOS – Written by Naturopath Josephine Cabrall.

Weight loss and PCOS

PCOS and weight loss with Josephine Cabrall from Fertile Ground Health Group

Weight loss improves just about every aspect of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Whilst it is often more difficult to lose weight when you have PCOS, even modest weight reductions can have a significant impact on PCOS symptoms plus reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

How do I know if I need to lose weight?

Being overweight, especially around the waist, causes insulin resistance (even if you don’t have PCOS) because fat cells release substances that mess with insulin sensitivity. This means that being overweight increases insulin levels even more, worsening PCOS signs and symptoms. In short, being overweight is bad news for PCOS.

Body mass index (BMI) is a good guide to determine if you are in the overweight range or the healthy weight range. You can calculate your BMI using a simple online calculator and plugging in your height and weight (there are many available).

How to get started on weight loss

It’s not so simple to just lose weight and if you have PCOS with insulin resistance, this can be even more difficult because insulin is a hormone that promotes fat storage. Both diet and exercise matter when it comes to weight loss but if you need to make changes in both areas, start with diet and once that is a routine for you work on your exercise routine – changing everything overnight is hard and you don’t want to set yourself up to fail.

When it comes to diet, head over here and get your copy of my free PCOS & Diet eBook. It outlines the dietary changes that have the most impact on weight loss for people with PCOS. If you check out the eBook but still need more help or have questions, you might need to work with a naturopath to work out the best diet for you as an individual.

What’s the best type of exercise for weight loss and PCOS?

There are two types of exercise that have been shown to be effective for PCOS and weight loss:

  1. Resistance training

Resistance training means moving your body against a resistance. The resistance can be your own body weight (e.g. push ups, planking or yoga) or equipment such as bands or weights. You can do resistance training at home if you’ve already got some experience with how to do it safely. If not, get help from a professional PT to ensure you adopt the correct posture and alignment, avoiding injury.

If you can’t afford a personal trainer, join a gym and ask the staff for assistance in getting your posture and alignment right on their equipment. If the gym is not your thing, join a strength yoga class such as Iyengar, Ashtanga or Vinyasa.

Resistance training is designed to build muscle mass. Increasing muscle mass has a positive effect on insulin resistance and boosts metabolism, meaning your resting metabolic rate is faster; you burn fat while at rest.

Research has shown resistance training can reduce androgens, waist circumference, body fat percentage and fasting blood glucose: all good things for PCOS. However, the best results come with doing a combination of resistance and aerobic exercise.

  1. Aerobic exercise

Aerobic exercise is also known as ‘cardio’ exercise and refers to any exercise that gets your heart and lungs to work faster. You breathe harder, your heart pumps faster and you work up a sweat. There are many ways to do this and lots of them are actually fun! Dancing, swimming, sex, aqua aerobics, team sports, cycling, HIIT, circuit training and jogging are just a few of them.

Beyond improving insulin resistance, aerobic exercise has many benefits. Aerobic exercise improves circulation, increases energy levels, increases endurance, reduces risk of heart disease and diabetes, reduces body fat, maintains a healthy weight, improves mood and improves sleep.

How much exercise do I need to do?

Based on the research you should do 1hr of resistance training three times weekly but you should start slowly and build up to this. On alternate days you should do 30 minutes of aerobic exercise. Have one day off per week to give your body a rest.

More is not better

If you push yourself beyond the above guidelines you run the risk of pushing your stress hormones too high, which inhibits weight loss and increases insulin.

My top 4 tips for success
  1. Get friends and family in on it

Making a time to exercise with friends or family increases your motivation and makes exercise more enjoyable. It makes you accountable for showing up. Likewise, a healthy diet, such as outlined in my PCOS & Diet eBook, is something that can be done as a family or with friends. It is a health choice that is beneficial for everyone, not just those with PCOS (if you have children they can eat the same as you, just let them eat freely of healthy carbohydrates rather than limiting their intake).

  1. Any type of exercise is better than no exercise

If all you can do today is just go for a walk then it’s better than nothing – you are still having a beneficial impact on your hormones when you exercise, even if weight loss is not achieved.

  1. Set realistic goals

If you can’t stick to a strict regime as outlined in the exercise section above, just do what you can. Any sort of increase in physical activity is better than none.

Set a goal of something you can do that is easily achievable. Once you can stick to that for 3 weeks, set a higher goal. For example, if you currently walk for 10 minutes per day, increase this to 15 minutes. Or get a pedometer and increase your daily steps by 2000 each week.

  1. Prioritise it

One of the excuses you might give yourself is that you simply don’t have time exercise and prepare food. This is when you need to sit down and make a list of all of the things that take up time in your life and prioritise which ones are going to make you the happiest. Chances are that being healthy is going to be near the top of your list.

Other things might have to take a back seat in preference of your health.
You might find that some things can be combined. For example, seeing friends and exercising could be rolled into one on some days. Preparing food and family time are other things that could be done together. How you shape your life is up to you but one thing is for sure: if you don’t prioritise time for weight loss, it won’t happen.

Need more help?

Losing weight can be really tough, so don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you need it. Some great choices are personal trainer or exercise physiologist, naturopath, nutritionist, osteopath, acupuncturist and psychologist or counsellor. All of these professionals can help you tailor a plan that is most effective for you as an individual and help keep you accountable and motivated along the way.

Josephine is currently offering free 10 minute consults to everyone. These sessions give both practitioner and patient the chance to see if the therapeutic relationship is a great fit, as well as to get you started on the path to feeling better, whether that be prescriptions on the day, referral for testing, or simple extras that you can incorporate to support yourself even more. 

Book in with Josephine to get started > bookings > Naturopathy > Free 10 min consult