As part of our Together Nature Baby Community series, Angela Haldane, known as 'Natural Ange', answered your questions on keeping your and your family well, naturally. Ange is a Naturopath and Medical Herbalist running online and phone consultations and previously ran a clinic local to our Grey Lynn Store.
Any tips on ways to boost your immune system heading into winter?
A good diet of vegetables protein and wholegrains, along with good quality sleep will boost the immune system. You can augment the nutrient intake by adding parsley to soups and casseroles. If you eat red meat- it is a good source of iron and zinc. Otherwise aim for seafood, white meat and pumpkin kernels which also have zinc.
Handwashing before meals and having sour foods before meals- which stimulates digestive enzyme secretion in the upper digestive tract- provides a good anti-microbial front line. In addition, you can boost immunity with Vitamin C supplements or Kiwiherb children’s range of echinacea herbal formulations which are easy on a child’s palate!
Should we be giving any supplements or remedies to a 2-year-old/ toddlers?
In such times as now during the COVID-19 pandemic, I think it would be wise. Please follow the advice in the previous question on immunity boosting. Children are able to make vitamins from foods when there is an insufficiency, however minerals you have to get from your diet and that depends on the soil is was grown in! As children grow, they have an increased requirement for minerals – zinc, iron, calcium to name a few, Deficiency signs start to appear when these minerals run low eg. Growing pains, warts, tooth grinding, tossing and turning, recurring respiratory illnesses. Grow a garden and feed the soil well with lots of compost, seaweed and minerals. Casseroles with bones, a variety of veges and parsley provide a nutritious and comforting meal for toddlers. Our family used to love this when they were young…and still do!
I’ve heard that the little bumps on upper arms indicate a lack of something in ones diet but can’t remember what it is. My 2.5yo has white small bumps on her upper arms and I would like to find out what this means?
This can be called Keratosis Pilaris. Firstly try bringing in a wide variation of foods including different grains, not just bread cheese and tomatoes as we often do, and reduce sugar consumption. Otherwise a food allergy test often identifies the food intolerances and environmental triggers like biological washing powders and we get good results with KP that way. If you need further help, I am available for online consultations - you can book online via my website.
Natural remedies for eczema?
It is always a good place to start is to find out what is causing this.
Patients of mine have found doing an allergy test to identify the food and environmental intolerances worth their while.
If the skin is splitting and weeping - you need Active elements 4.3 and Active elements 3.2 works well for eczema and skin disorders where there are dry flaky skin.
Drizzle olive oil over bread or veges to provide the essential fatty acids in the diet.
Probiotic supplements for babies- what are your thoughts?
You want a probiotic strain with bifido infantis. I can recommend Orthoplex Multigen which is a broad spectrum probiotic including B. infantis.
Would love any guidance on oils that are safe to be used in diffusers around babies?
Consulting the Absolute Essential website, as Dr Bo Hendgren is the expert in this field. It says that Rose, Lavender Sweet and Chamomile Roman are safe to use around babies.
Her products have the mother and childsafe logo on their products. She recommends that babies use 1/8 to ¼ the recommended dosage on Mother and Child-safe products. Children- ½ the recommended dosage.
Pregnant with shingles, any natural tips to help ease the pain?
Magnesium in particular Active elements 2.3 would be good for reducing nerve pain.. and B vitamins to support the nervous system and overcome the stress of shingles.
Artemis have a “nerve and skin rescue oil” made with St Johns Wort. I have just received confirmation this is safe in pregnancy and is wonderful for this nerve pain.
I wish you well, not a nice experience for you at all.
My child is 11 months old and I’m exhausted! Anything I could take to help?
I understand how an 11 month old can tire you out, 24/7… I would start with Natal Care a multivitamin with iodine and selenium designed for mother and baby (breastfeeding) I can arrange this to be couriered to your residence.
Are you getting enough sleep? Is your baby waking in the night? If so, that problem needs to be solved! Email me for recommendations or an Online Consultation.
Visit your doctor to have an all-round checkup – perhaps a blood test to check your iron studies, B12 , thyroid function etc – your doctor will advise you on this. It is best to identify these possible underlying causes first.
Make sure you are eating enough? Especially protein, cook double quantity of soups/ casseroles and freeze half; Boil 4 eggs at a time and put them in the fridge ready to use.
Plan time to rest – whenever your baby sleeps, claim some time for you as well.
My 2-month-old has red dots over her face and neck? What could it be?
Check with your Plunket nurse or doctor - have you been to your 6 week check-up?
Are they distressing your baby? If so, get a diagnosis sooner.
It’s a bit hard for me to tell from here, but also at this age, the hormones are changing, and rashes can appear. In time they will disappear.
Any suggestions for pregnancy reflux/ heartburn?
Smaller frequent meals is better. Active elements 4.1 formula reduces acidity reflux and burping. Slippery elm powder is nutritive and accelerates healing, where mucosa has become raw (ouch!). Avoid food intolerances as they may cause the reflux eg apples, tomatoes – note reactions in a food diary.
Tips on becoming pregnant?
This is a rather large topic…I am thinking if I referred you to a book, also available in the library by Francesca Naish “Natural Fertility” this would walk you through every aspect of what you need to know. It would be good for you and your partner to see your doctor for an antenatal visit so that they can advise you on blood tests, and upon assessment, they would make suitable recommendations.
I can also help with an Online Consultation if you would like practitioner range prenatal vitamins and herbal tonics.
Thank you Ange for sharing your knowledge with us! xx Nb