naturopath dural

10 reasons to eat Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are likely to help balance blood sugar, improve heart health, reduce inflammation, aid weight loss and improve digestive function. All fantastic reasons to include them in your diet!

I am a little bit obsessed with chia seeds at the moment. I add them to my oat bran of a morning, make puddings, put them in my banana muffins, choc mint brain power bites, smoothies, yoghurt, salads and pretty much anything else I can think of!

Here are 10 reasons why you should add
some chia seeds to your diet:

  1. They are high in fibre which improves digestive function and bulks up the stool to make bowels more regular
  2. Chia seeds contain all 8 of the essential amino acids making them a complete protein. Protein helps with muscle repair, blood sugar balancing and appetite regulation.
  3. They are high in antioxidants so they help to destroy disease causing free radicals.
  4. Chia contains good amounts of lots of essential nutrients including calcium, iron, vitamin c and potassium.
  5. They are mucilaginous which means they secrete a gel like substance that is nice and soothing and healing to the gut – put some chia seeds in a small amount of water and watch it turn to jelly. Now imagine this in your digestive system. So good!!
  6. Can be used to substitute egg. Yep! If you’re allergic to egg you can mix chia seeds with water so it goes all jelly-ish and use that in place of egg in your recipes! To make Chia gel mix 1 part Chia seed with 10 parts water, stir, then let it sit for around 10 minutes
  7. Chia is full of omega 3 ALA fatty acids which are anti-inflammatory and good for cardiovascular health as well as arthritis sufferers. If you’re a vegetarian you can use chia seeds as one of your non-meat or fish sources of omega 3.
  8. Chia slows the digestion of carbohydrates to glucose which provides a slow release of energy to keep you going and going and going.
  9. Chia seeds have been shown to increase HDL cholesterol and lower Triglycerides as well as lower blood pressure all good news for heart health.
  10. Chia seeds are gluten free so can be enjoyed by coeliacs and those with gluten sensitivities.

If you are a naughty person who doesn't drink water, you will need to start if you are going to include chia seeds in your diet. A lack of water may result in constipation due to the high fibre content.

While chia seeds are an amazing superfood to include in your diet to boost overall health and nutrition, if you do have any medical conditions such as diabetes or heart disease, you still need to seek professional medical advice for your condition.

Giveaway - Closed, sorry!

The lovely people at The Chia Cohave given me one prize pack to give away to a lucky Burton Health friend :)

The pack includes:

  • 1 x 150g black Chia
  • 1 x 150g white Chia
  • Sunscreen
  • Jute bag with recipe card

Just head over to the Burton Health Naturopathy Facebook page to enter. You will need to 'Like' our page and comment on the competition picture to tell us how you will use your chia seeds if you win. Winner will be drawn on Monday 26th August. Good Luck xx

Becoming a truer you

I recently answered a call out for an article that asked "What have you given up to make your life better?" My answer was about my journey to becoming the best version of myself and giving up worrying, shyness and fear in order to achieve this. The process to become my best self will never end. There will always be something to work and improve upon but when I look back at who I was 3, 4 or 5 years ago I see a completely different person and I love how much I have changed! This is not a physical change and its not something many people would notice. This change has been within me and it was a change that I wanted for so many years.

So, answering this call out got me thinking that I really should share this very personal story because being a Naturopath is much more than just advising on diet and supplements. For me, being a naturopath is about helping people to truly be themselves and I often share snippets of my story with clients who I think will benefit from hearing it, but this is the first time I have actually written it down and shared it properly. I really hope that it helps anyone who feels a little lost and out of touch with who they are or like me, if you know who you are but just have trouble expressing it and being comfortable in your own skin.

Who I was - Shy, self conscious, fearful, day dreamer, worrier, judgemental, insecure.

I was pretty good at keeping all of that negative stuff to myself. And I was still a nice person and happy and functional and normal! I just wasn't me. I knew who I was inside but I didn't feel like I was being that person on the outside. I haven't actually changed at all. It's just that now I have cleared a lot of the mental rubbish and I can allow myself to just be me without worrying if people are judging me.

I think judgement was my main issue. I knew that I judged other people and I just expected that everyone was judging me. I think this fear of being judged all started when we emigrated to Australia. I was 9 years old and I guess I didn't really like being teased about my accent or about saying words 'wrong'. I lost my English accent pretty quickly just to fit in and I suppose to stop nasty kids from telling me to go back to my own country. I can still vividly remember the day in year 5 when I did a topic talk and afterwards in the questions and comments time a girl in my class said "It was very good but its actually viiiitamin (Aussie pronunciation), not vitamin (English-ly pronounced)." Even though the teacher told her that there are two ways to pronounce vitamin I still felt silly knowing that all of the kids had been sitting there thinking I didn't know what I was talking about.

Its amazing that little things that happen when you're a child can so significantly impact your adult life. I used to be so self conscious and shy that talking to clients in the waiting room or being in social situations where people were listening to me talk would turn me bright red and nervous. As soon as I felt myself going red I'd try to end the conversation and pretty much run away. It got to the point that I'd be saying in my head "don't go red, don't go red, don't go red" instead of concentrating on what I was saying or doing.

I was fine around my close friends but when I came to meeting new people or mingling with my boyfriends friends I would be so nervous before hand and worried about what I would have to talk about that I would feel sick and really not want to go out at all. I felt embarrassed about starting conversations or about jumping in to a conversation that someone else was having so I would pretty much just not say anything unless someone specifically asked me a question.

I had a hundred and one fears including public speaking (obviously), the dark, bridges, tunnels, trucks, ships, pipes, lifts, cockroaches, apple stickers, going red, introducing myself in class, well anyway, I can't remember them all but you get the gist!

I would also worry about things that hadn't happend and find myself in deep day dreams about these negative scenarios (things like a loved one dying) and then feel so guilty that I'd even thought about it! I thought there was something seriously wrong with me. I knew it was just a fear of those things happening that had me day dreaming about them but I just couldn't understand why I couldn't stop myself from doing it!

My transformational journey

When I started my naturopathic studies I also began a journey to improve myself and I decided a few years ago that I was on a mission to become the best version of myself.

My transformation started very slowly and has sped up significantly in the last three years. I tried a lot of different modalities to clear my clutter and if you're inspired to start a journey to clear your own clutter the best piece of advice I can give you is not to give up. If you try one thing a few times and don't see any changes, try something else. Everything I have used over the past few years has worked. And I actually think the combination of modalities has made the transformation stronger.

The first thing I noticed that made a significant change was Bach Flowers. We had to choose one to take for an assignment so I took mimulus for 'known fears'. After a few months I noticed that I no longer ran to my room after turning the lights off at night, all of a sudden one night I went 'hang on? something's different?!' and realised that the house was dark but I was WALKING to my room! Crazy! The other thing I noticed was that I was able to actually kill a cockroach instead of descending into a full on panic attack! I still hate cockroaches A LOT but its nice to know that if I'm home alone and one comes to visit, I can deal with it if I have to.

Then, as part of my studies I started using Homoeopathy and was seeing a great Homoeopath and Astrologer in Sydney, Michael Neil, who taught me a lot about myself and helped me calm down in public situations.

For a while I worked in a clinic with a Hypnotherapist. I think I had about 3 sessions with her and I found it quite amazing. She would get me to identify the negative thought patterns and replace them with positive or constructive versions. After the session I would know what we had worked on but I couldn't, for the life of me remember what the negative sentences or thought patterns were!

And of course I've used a lot of Herbal medicine and Nutritionals for my nervous system and adrenals. Magnesium, B vitamins, Withania, Codonopsis, Lavendar, Oats, Rehmannia, Liquorice, Passionflower, Magnolia, Rhodiola and so many more! Luckily for my clients, all of this experimenting on myself has lead me to find the stress and anxiety supplements that really work. So the same tablets, powders and liquids that I've taken are still available in my dispensary today.

The two things that have made the most significant change to my emotional wellbeing are Kinesiology and Energetic Healing.

First the Kinesiology with Barbara Smith helped me to stop worrying about being judged and this stopped me from turning red and going silent in social situations. I still blush from time to time and I'm still pretty reserved but I can now comfortably and confidently be myself and converse with people naturally.

Then the Energetic Healing with Sarah Binet has allowed me to let go of the unnessesary worrying and story creating and has freed up my mind for greater things! I don't get lost in elaborate day dreams, I don't worry all the time and I just feel so... me! I am going to be working with Sarah for quite a while I think as there are many more layers to get through but so far the changes have been amazing!

When I look back over the past couple of years I can see such a huge transformation in myself. I am happier, more comfortable in my own skin, open and accepting. I'm not a different person, I'm allowing my true self to shine through instead of worrying what people will think! I am a better person and a better practitioner because I have released my insecurities. And now I get to help other people on their path to find their truest self and I feel like the luckiest girl in the world

Laura Burton today - happy, content, true, present and still a work in progress!

8 tips to improve your sleep naturally

I have been interested in the healing power of sleep for a long time. One of the first assignments I can remember doing for my Introduction to Naturopathy course was actually all about sleep.

I love to sleep and I rarely have problems in this area but on those few occasions where I find myself staring at the ceiling I am lucky that I have all this knowledge stored away in my brain to help undo the dreaded insomnia. I like to share my sleep knowledge as much as I can and my clients often leave the clinic with handouts explaining the importance of good quality sleep and how they can improve their sleep which in turn improves their health.  Now I am spreading the love further and sharing some of my sleep tips with you :)

Insomnia, tossing and turning, watching the minutes tick by on the clock, thinking the same thoughts over and over, waking up every hour, nightmares, sleep talking, sleep walking, sleep eating, I'm exhausted just thinking about it all! If you wake up feeling tired and frustrated because you just can't get the good quality sleep that you used to, then read on and please put some of my tips into practice.

1. Good sleep hygiene is essential!

Do you like your bedroom? Is it pretty and peaceful and relaxing? If your bedroom is cluttered and dirty and ugly you're probably not going to enjoy being in it. So the first step in your sleep transformation is to create a sleep environment that you love. Get rid of any clutter in the bedroom and under the bed.

2. Use soft lamps 

Instead of bright lights as a dark environment is essential for melatonin production which is the hormone that regulates your sleep/wake cycles.


You can't realistically expect to come home from a crazy day at the office, scoff down your dinner, go for a run, watch the news and then fall into a peaceful slumber.

3. Eat your dinner at least 2 hours before you go to bed.

This gives your body time to digest your food before you go to sleep. If you're still trying to break down your dinner when you go to bed your body can't focus on rest and repair and you probably won't have a very sound sleep.

4. Try to exercise in the morning.

Some people find that exercising at night amps them up too much but exercising in the morning helps to give you energy to get through the day.

5. Take time to wind down before bed.

Watching the news and reading the paper are likely to stimulate your mind too much to be able to have a restful sleep so are best avoided in the evening. This rule also applies to work. If you must bring work home from the office, finish up one hour before bed time so that you can release all of the work clutter from your brain before you retire.

6. Try to spend the hour before bed relaxing.

Dim the lights, have a bath, meditate, do yoga, listen to calming music, write your journal (to get rid of those circling thoughts), and remember to breath deeply.

Sleep Routine

7. Go to bed at 10pm

or as close to 10pm as possible (this advice is for people who go to bed late. If you already go to bed at 9 or 9.30pm and have a great sleep, please continue!).

Studies have shown that the optimum sleep/wake times are sleep at 10pm, wake at 6am. Getting up early often allows you time to do your morning exercise, have a good breakfast and generally be more productive. Going to bed at 10pm allows your body enough time to get into the deep stages of sleep and repair and restore your body effectively. Did you know that your adrenal glad does its repair between 11pm and 1am? If you aren't deeply asleep between these hours your adrenal glad never gets a chance to restore itself which can lead to fatigue, anxiety and burn out.

Naturopathy for Insomnia

Naturopathic medicine such as herbal medicines, vitamins and minerals can help. These are best prescribed by your practitioner as there isn't one herb or nutrient that is guaranteed to be the answer so a trained naturopath is needed to determine what will work best for you. You may require magnesium to help relax your nervous system and muscles. Maybe you need a vitamin B complex in the day time or herbs for stress and anxiety. There is even a bach flower remedy specifically for 'unresolved circling thoughts' which I often put in my sleep mixes to help switch the worry off at night.

8. Drink herbal teas

to help relax your nervous system and induce a restful sleep. These may include Lavender, Passionflower, Chamomile and Lemon Balm. Try my TeaStress blend or Rest and Digest Blend, enjoy half an hour before bed. 

Sleep is very important for mental and physical health. If you can get yourself into a healthy sleep routine you will feel more energetic, you will get sick less often and your days will be more productive.

Happy sleeping :)

Laura x