TouchStone Health Photo
TouchStone Health Photo
TouchStone Health Photo

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Using Seeds to Balance your Hormones – Seed Cycling!

Posted on: July 16th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

by: Alexandria Muirhead, R.H.N.

FINAL COPY

Do you experience painful periods and awful PMS symptoms such as diarrhea, mood swings, food cravings, headaches, fatigue, swelling, bloating, ance, constipation?

Do you have PCOS, estrogen dominance, fibroids, endometriosis, infertility?

Or do you experience symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, fatigue?

Seed cycling is a natural method to help balance hormones and help alleviate these awful symptoms!

What is Seed Cycling?
Seed cycling is a natural way to balance your hormones, boost fertility and help alleviate uncomfortable and painful symptoms associated with women’s menstrual cycles. This method has been around for a very long time and used by alternative health practitioners to ease these symptoms. It consists of supplementing your diet with pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds at specific times of your cycle. The seeds are raw, ground and stored in the fridge to preserve freshness and stop them from going rancid. Some of the seeds need to be ground because our bodies have a difficult time breaking down seeds. By grinding them, we liberate the beneficial phytochemicals necessary to promote hormonal balance. Each seed has a specific role it plays in that part of your cycle.

The Basics of your Menstrual Cycle

Your cycle consists of two main phases; the follicular phase and the luteal phase. The follicular phase is the first phase of your cycle from days 1 – 14 (approximately). This phase begins the first day of your bleed and lasts until you ovulate. During the first week of your follicular phase (your bleed week) estrogen and progesterone are very low which causes the shedding of the uterine lining. The second week of your follicular phase is when your hormones begin to rise. Ovulation is said to occur on day 14. This is not always the case. This is based on a 28 day cycle and every woman’s body is unique and different. The best three ways to know when you ovulate is to track your cycles, assess your cervical mucus and to test your basal body temperature. The combination of these three methods will give you the most accurate timing of your ovulation. Ovulation is when estrogen peaks and you are feeling sexy and confident! Testosterone and progesterone are also on the rise! After ovulation you enter the luteal phase. Entering this phase, estrogen and progesterone are high. If an egg isn’t fertilized then your hormones decrease and you continue to cycle.

How to Seed Cycle

Days 1-14 : Follicular Phase 

Eat one tablespoon of raw, ground flax seeds and one tablespoon of raw pumpkin seeds. The phytochemicals, fiber, fatty acids, and nutrients (zinc, selenium) in these seeds promote estrogen production while also aiding in removal of excess estrogens and xenoestrogens. This promotes a healthy balance of estrogen during the phase when it is the main hormone.

Days 15-28: Luteal Phase

Eat one tablespoon of raw, ground sunflower seeds and one tablespoon of raw, ground sesame seeds. This phase of your cycle is when progesterone is the star and when unbalanced, is associated with nasty PMS symptoms. The nutrients in these two seeds, especially zinc and vitamin E, assist with progesterone production to help you feed your best!

Note: If possible, it is best to choose organic seeds as this reduces your exposure to herbicides and pesticides. If you are unable to purchase organic, just purchase the conventional seeds! You will still see the wonderful benefits from Seed Cycling!

Ways to Incorporate Your Seeds?

You can incorporate these seeds into your diet in many different ways and in many different dishes from breakfast, dinner, dessert and even snacks!

  • Add them in your smoothie
  • Sprinkle on your yogurt
  • Add some into your oatmeal
  • Sprinkle on your salad
  • Mix into dips such as hummus
  • Eat them as a seed butter and dip your apples in them or spread on toast
  • Sprinkle on top of your chia seed pudding
  • Add to your baked goods and desserts
  • Mix in with your nut butter
  • Add then into your granola

There are many different ways to incorporate these seeds into your diet during the different phases of your cycle!

My Personal Experience

I was skeptical at first of seed cycling for hormonal balance but decided to try it since I had nothing to lose and was suffering with awful symptoms from hormonal imbalance. That was over a year ago now and I am such a huge supporter and fan of seed cycling. It is an easy and effective way to help balance your hormones and minimize those awful symptoms. I love to add the seeds to my smoothie in the morning! It ensures I always get my daily dose of seeds and it tastes delicious!

Clinic is REOPEN

Posted on: June 9th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

We trust this email finds you well and safe.  It has been an interesting time in the world and hoping amongst all the changes that have occurred that you have been ok, you have been supported and are keeping well.

We also wanted to take this opportunity to update you on the clinic reopening.

Dr. Jocelyn Hayes, Chiropractic Physician and Anna Totzke, Registered Acupuncturist are both back in office at this time, while Dr. Melanie Reidl, N.D. is still practicing via telemedicine and phone and Dr. Amanda Cressman, N.D. is back in office June 25th but also practicing via telemedicine and phone.

The clinic operations have changed and below is an update as to how we are keeping in alignment with the Ministry of Health Standards to keep you safe.

If you are interested in booking in, please do so here and we look forward to seeing you again to help support you in your health journey in any way we can.

COVID-19 CLINIC UPDATE

Great Gluten-free Recipes

Posted on: May 1st, 2020 by TouchStone Health

Written by: Amanda Cressman, N.D.

If you are like most people I have spoken with in the last few weeks, eating balanced meals that are healthy has been tricky.   There are so many reasons for this – less access to grocery stores and fresh foods, the sheer stress of shopping and the emotional eating that can occur from the stress and sadness of all the changes to our lifestyle.  Even just being home all day, everyday, where the kitchen is central to the home, it’s easy and understandable as to why many are eating more frequently than we need to.

When stress levels are high, blood sugar changes occur, whereas the body is needing to provide glucose to support the stress response.  Sugar cravings can increase and with chronic stress, weight changes then happen, specifically around the midsection.

For many, the past few weeks have been one of the most stressful experiences that they have gone through.  Supporting your stress response is of vital importance, not only for mental health but also for maintaining the daily habits that keep us grounded and supported in ourselves.

Even though it may not seem to be connected, eating balanced meals and choosing healthy food options supports our stress response.  Avoiding known food sensitivities is also helpful to ensure the body has no additional stress responses occurring.

So, I wanted to share some recipes/resources to hopefully inspire and surprise you with how easy and tasty they are.  They are all Gluten-free and some are also Grain-Free , supporting a variety of dietary plans in this time.  I have no affiliation with any of these sites, just happy to have found recipes that are easy to make and that support gluten-free and grain-free eating.

See what you think and I hope these recipe ideas taste great for you and support all the changes going on in your world.

Breakfast Ideas

Grain-free Berry Granola – Healthful Pursuit

Banana Oat Blender Pancakes – Kitchen Treaty

Coconut Flour Chocolate Crepes – Healthful Pursuit

Sweet Potato Hash – Healthful Pursuit

Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal – Oh She Glows

Soft and Chewy Sugar Free Granola Bars – Oh She Glows

Almond Flour Pancakes – Comfy Belly

Fluffy Coconut Flour Pancakes – Comfy Belly

Quinoa Granola – Comfy Belly

Blueberry Syrup – Nourishing Meals

Gluten Free Raspberry Scones – The Roasted Root

Mochaccino Chia Breakfast Pudding – Joyous Health

Lunch Ideas

Spiralized Thai Salad Recipe – Against All Grain

Sea Salt Rosemary Zucchini Chips – Joyous Health

Veggie Summer Rolls with Peanut Sauce – Avocado Pesto

Soft Gluten Free Sandwich Bread – A Little Insanity

The Life-Changing Loaf of Bread – My New Roots

Instant Pot Carrot Ginger Soup – Cook with Manali

Low Carb Irish Soda Bread – Elana’s Pantry

Tahini Glazed Carrots – Elana’s Pantry

Lemon Poppy Seed Dressing – Detoxinista

The Best Quinoa & Black Bean Salad – Detoxinista

Raw Apple Cider Vinaigrette – Detoxinista

Honey Balsamic Dressing – Detoxinista

Easy Lentil, Sweet Potato & Coconut Curry – Detoxinista

“Cheeseburger” Salad with Special Sauce – Eating Bird Food

Paleo Chinese Chicken Salad – Paleo Running Momma

Dinner Ideas

Coconut Cauliflower Rice – Healthful Pursuit

Sweet Potato Chickpea Buddha Bowl – Minimalist Baker 

Spicy Buddha Bowl – Crazy Vegan Kitchen

Sweet Potato Pizza Crust – Blissful Basil

Cauliflower Pizza Crust – Detoxinista

Curried Cauliflower Soup – Cookie and Kate

Dessert Ideas

Black Bean Chia Brownies – Joyous Health

One Bowl Jumbo Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Oh She Glows

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake – Comfy Belly

Real Deal Chocolate Chip Cookies – Against All Grain

Fudgy Chocolate Tarts – Against All Grain

Banana Bread – Comfy Belly

Flourless Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins – Running with Spoons

Flourless Banana Bread Muffins – Running with Spoons

Fudgy Paleo Beetroot Brownies – The Roasted Root

Raw Tiramisu – Unconventional Baker

Chocolate Avocado Pudding – Pop Sugar

Cassava Banana Bread – Paleo Running Momma

Pumpkin Bread with Chocolate Chips Paleo – Paleo Running Momma

Sweet Potato Brownies – Paleo OMG

Healthy Carrot Cake – Detoxinista

Paleo Pumpkin Pie – Elana’s Pantry

Snacks

Chocolate Gelatin Bars – The Healthy You Project

Crunch Raw Protein Balls – The Healthy Family and Home

Homemade Gummy Candies – Healthful Pursuit – Use a juice of your choice

Date Energy Balls – Detoxinista

Mint Chocolate Truffle Bites – A Virtual Vegan

Easy Paleo Snack Bar Recipes – Beaming Baker

Helpful Resource

Posted on: April 10th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

by: Amanda Cressman, N.D.

Loving Kindness Meditation is one of the of the more popular meditations that has been studied to understand its role on creating calm and well being for the individual practicing it as well as promoting compassion and kindness for others.  In this time of uncertainty where stress is high within ourselves but also in relation to others, these are things we could use more of.
This meditation can be incredibly helpful and one that is worth a consideration.

Here are some articles explaining it.  See what you think.

https://positivepsychology.com/loving-kindness-meditation/

https://www.mindful.org/this-loving-kindness-meditation-is-a-radical-act-of-love/

 

Helpful Resource

Posted on: April 9th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

by: Dr. Jocelyn Hayes, D.C.

A breathing exercise for stress reduction

  • Find a position that is comfortable to you (sitting, lying, etc) in a space that is quiet and free of distractions (for a few minutes at least).
  • Start to let your body settle into that position and become heavy on the chair you sit in, or bed you lay in, or wherever you find yourself at the moment.
  • Let go of any tension you’re holding in your body or face. Without changing your breath just start to pay attention to it.
  • After a few breaths, start to let your breath get deeper into your chest and belly.
  • You may want to put a hand on your chest and one on your belly so you can feel where your breath is going.
  • If your hand on your belly is not feeling any movement, deepen your breath into the belly until you feel some movement there.
  • For the next few breaths, start to lengthen each inhale and exhale slightly to slow the breath down.
  • Now we start a 5-10 breath, meaning you inhale for a count of 5 and exhale for a count of 10. If this feels like too much then try a 4 count inhale and 8 count exhale – the key is that the exhale is twice as long as the inhale. This switches our brain and body out of a stress state and into a relaxed state.
  • Keep doing your 5-10 or 4-8 breath for several minutes. I recommend at least 5 to 10 min, but you can do this for shorter lengths during the day to reduce stress when you notice it rising. You can also do it for much longer if you would like an even more peaceful and relaxing result.

The benefits of a 5-10 breathing exercise are many. As I mentioned, it moves your nervous system out of the stress cycle and into a more restful and calm state. This has the effect of reducing mental stress, anxiety, physical pain and muscle tension – things many of us are experiencing a lot of recently. Breath work also increases your oxygen levels, improves posture, massages your internal organs and can even help to improve circulation and digestion.

Stress management is essential to our overall health and wellbeing.  Breath work is an excellent tool that can have incredible benefits on your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing. I encourage you to carve out time in your schedule to take a few deep breaths, and hope it brings you a few moments of calm.

Encouraging Words for your Day

Posted on: April 1st, 2020 by TouchStone Health

from: Amanda Cressman, N.D. 

singer

Recipe a day to Inspire

Posted on: March 28th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

Today’s recipe is definitely all fun – Edible Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.  This is a treat for sure with a fun twist of chickpeas and sunflower seed butter.  I find it fun to be creative in the kitchen and turn delicious favourites into something more nourishing and nutrient dense.  Hope this is a fun one for you!

edible-chocolate-chip-cookie-dough

Recipe a day to Inspire

Posted on: March 27th, 2020 by TouchStone Health

Today’s recipe is simply delicious…which is great as today has been a hard day.  We are now almost 2 weeks into this drastic change in all our lives and the emotions have moved from shocked, to fear, to anxiousness, to fatigue.  Amongst all there is to be grateful for, today has been a day of feeling many of the unpleasant emotions, which is important.

With so much change and disruption, I decided to choose a recipe that is rooted in tradition, in familiarity and in comfort….bread.  But this isn’t any loaf of bread – it’s easy to make, it’s honestly delicious and works for so many different dietary plans/restrictions.

If you make this, I hope it is delightful.

high-fiber-seed-loaf

Meal Plans to Help Make your Life Easier

Posted on: August 21st, 2017 by TouchStone Health

Do you find it intimidating or overwhelming to prepare healthy foods for yourself or your family?  This is a common reasons why most people struggle with clean eating.  We all know the basics of eating better – lots of vegetables, added fruits, healthy proteins and clean carbohydrates work for many but it’s hard to actually do this on a consistent basis.

Diet meal with friends

Many people’s lives are full…full of many things and eating healthy foods generally falls off the priority list or is forgotten.  By the end of a busy day/week, it’s hard to make good decisions that are in alignment with how we wish to be eating.  Check out this article on Decision Fatigue by The Harvard Business Review.  Do you ever find yourself eating well and clean for the first part of your day but by the end are eating foods you wish you hadn’t?  We make dozens, some studies report hundreds of food-related decisions throughout our day and after deciding many things throughout the course of a day, we are tired and start making easier decisions which usually results in poorer choices for our health.  I know for myself, I have ideals of eating healthy foods but sometimes the inspiration falls short and I’m eating the same thing over and over or eating rice crackers and hummus at the end of a long day which although is an ok food, not a match for my constitution which does better on vegetables and a light protein.

So, we have begun a new program to help you eat clean and take away the work of deciding what to eat and when.  We are now developing Healthy Meal Plans to suit your specific dietary needs.  Weekly or Monthly recipe plans are put together for your specific needs.  Foods can be avoided specific to your needs and menus can be created specifically for your health goals (example: dairy-free, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, paleo, FODMAP, Anti-inflammatory, PCOS, Thyroid, Autoimmune, etc).

What’s included:

-a detailed shopping list is given for your plan

-a to-do list for the week of prepping food

-all the recipes

-micro and macronutrient breakdown

-caloric breakdown

And…we can make it for whatever serving size you want.  If you have a family of 5 we can ensure all recipes are specific for your 5 people or for one person. Prepping your week/month is incredibly easy as we do the work for you.

We started this program a month ago as many people were sharing their desire to eat well but that more support was needed to stay interested and consistent.  We hope this is the solution to help.  Pricing is located on our Meal Plan page and ask Dr. Cressman, N.D. if you have any other questions.

Attached is a sample 3-day eating plan to let you know what a plan would potentially look like.  sample-diet

This helps make eating delicious, healthy foods easier.

 

Stop Staring, it’s starting to get weird

Posted on: April 24th, 2017 by TouchStone Health

I recently saw this quote written by a friend and it made me laugh out loud.  I love laughing out loud…it doesn’t happen that often but when it does, I take notice.

By the way, your past called to say, stop staring, it’s starting to get weird.”

Dr. Rajesh Ragbir, N.D.

If my past could talk she’d definitely yell this out with a few other words as a reminder to move on, to stop being stuck.  It’s so easy to get stuck though, to stop and stare.  Part of the staring can be helpful – to reflect, to learn and understand how to change outcomes in the future, but so much of the staring is the opposite of helpful.  Why I love this quote so much is the friendly and humour-filled reminder points out that the staring is weird.  Just like if you caught someone staring at you for long periods of time, it’s weird.  You can’t do anything about it, so stop staring, stop ruminating, stop beating yourself up over a moment that is done.

So much about getting better on all levels of our being, whether that be the emotional, the mental or the physical is about moving on…not being stuck.  Yes, reflection is important and necessary at times, but the staring…not so much.  What a fun and playful reminder Dr. Ragbir, N.D. gave us with these words.  I hope if you catch yourself staring at the past, that you’ll gently remind yourself to stop and maybe in that moment, you’ll stare around at the now where real change can take place and where you can actually do something about it.

Dr. Amanda Cressman, N.D.

564-572 Weber Street North, Unit 3A
Waterloo, Ontario
N2L5C6