So is fat ok now?

So is fat ok now?

Salmon.There has been a lot of new information coming out lately regarding fat and sugar. First fat was the big nasty and everyone steered clear of any fat, often favouring low fat or “lite” versions of food believing we were doing the right thing for our arteries. Now it seems this was the wrong thing to do as these products generally have had the fat content replaced by extra sugar. And sugar is now the new demon.

Latest findings show that sugar is the thing doing us the most damage these days because it is so readily converted to fat for storage within the body, including within the liver. It is pro-inflammatory and causes oxidation which accelerates damage and aging throughout the body. So, does this mean we can now eat all the fat we like? After all, it has been shown that populations with some of the highest fat intakes also exhibit some of the lowest incidence of cardiovascular disease.

Well, when it comes to cardiovascular risk, yes, eating fat is fine. However there are a couple of guidelines which we’ll look at later.

Bottle of olive oilSo what is the interaction between sugar and fat in the blood? Sugar (including that readily obtained by the body from breaking down excessive carbohydrates) can cause oxidative damage to the fats circulating in our blood. This is the time when high blood fat and cholesterol levels become a problem. When blood fats are in good condition and circulating in healthy, undamaged blood vessels, they are protective. It is only when inflammatory damage has occurred (usually from excessive sugars), that plaques can form, leading to heart attack and stroke.

The other interesting thing is that excessive carbohydrate and sugar intake is more likely to cause an increase in your blood fats than eating dietary fat. This is because one of the ways the body deals with excessive carbohydrates is for the liver to convert it into fatty acids.

So don’t feel guilty about including fat in your diet. Stop buying low fat versions of food just because you think it’s best for your health. Simply follow these 5 guidelines:

  1. Trans fat intake is the only fat shown to have a significantly detrimental effect on cardiovascular risk. This should be avoided wherever possible. (See below for a list of the different types of fats and their main sources)
  2. Omega-3 has been shown to have a significantly protective impact on cardiovascular risk and should be included wherever possible.
  3. The ideal ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 intake is 2:1. The average dietary intake is closer to 20:1 and this imbalance promotes its own inflammation. So enjoy eating sources of omega-6 but make sure you are also eating good sources of omega-3.
  4. Only if you are already suffering insulin resistance and inflammatory damage should you moderate saturated fat intake, taking care not to subsequently increase your carbohydrate intake to compensate.
  5. Fat is an essential nutrient and generally only detrimental when consumed in excess, along with excessive calories overall, inadequate exercise and inadequate fruit and vegetable intake.

The Types of Fat:


  1. Saturated fat – found in meat, dairy, eggs and coconut oil
  2. Monounsaturated fat – found in meat, poultry, dairy, eggs, avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil and canola oil.
  3. Polyunsaturated fat:
    1. Omega-6 – Found in nuts, seeds, poultry, grapeseed oil, sunflower oil, sesame and soybean oils.
    2. Omega-3 – Grassfed beef, dairy, seafood, fish, flaxseeds, fish oil and flaxseed oil.
  4. Trans fats – partially dehydrogenated fats, deep fried foods, commercial cakes, biscuits and pastries.

The brilliant thing is that most natural foods contain a variety of types of fat, not just saturated or unsaturated, and they are generally in the best ratio for your body’s health. What’s more, natural, unprocessed foods are also packed with all the antioxidants needed to offset any oxidative damage that may occur to the fats they contain. This is the beauty of nature.


First posted by Rebecca Steven Naturopath. Rebecca is the Naturopath at The Centre of Wellbeing in Knoxfield. If you would like a consultation with Rebecca call 03 9763 0033.

Do you remember cuddles?

Do you remember when you were young?

Do you remember those special moments when everything in the world felt good and there was nothing that you could not do?

How old were you, and what made those moments special?

a very happy babyWe can all remember back to our early childhood, to those early days when all we had to worry about was not getting caught doing something naughty or trying to sneak that extra treat. But have you ever thought about as a parent what it is like for your very young children and babies.

Every one has the same basic needs at a very young age. We need food, shelter, and most of all they want love and to feel secure. At a very early age babies respond to touch. It is their first language you could say. They like to be held, comforted and reassured. Babies respond to voices, sounds, colours and textures and they learn to communicate with us too in their own limited fashion.

Over the next few weeks we will be exploring this language of touch further.

Gillian Cosgrith will also be holding a mother and baby massage course on Friday 27 November where you are parents can learn more about the language of touch to assist your baby development in the early formative years.

When should I get a massage?

massage healthyA massage has many proven health benefits, including stress relief, loosening tight muscles and releasing tension and pressure on nerves. If you are considering having a massage you need to ask yourself “how do I feel and do I have any chronic pain”. This will help you decide what type of massage you need and how frequently you should schedule a massage.

 Each massage therapist has a different style and you might need to experiment to find what best suits you and your needs. Think about what you want to get out of your massage. Are you looking for stress relief or treatment of chronic pain? It is important to explain your reasons for booking a massage to your massage therapist. They can then suggest an appropriate treatment plan to best achieve your goals.

Many people ask “how often should I get a massage”. The simple answer to this is “whenever you feel you need one”. If you feel your muscles starting to tense up, your body starting to ache or you are experiencing stress then a massage will help.

A weekly massage with have the greatest benefit for your health and quality of life. However this is not always possible. When addressing a chronic pain condition, it is often recommended to have 2-3 massages in quick succession to address the issue, then reduce to fortnightly or monthly massages to maintain the benefits achieved. The longer you wait between massages, the more opportunity you are giving your muscles to revert to their previous state.

 Investigate the massage therapists in your area and find out what type of massage techniques they use. Book yourself a series of massages with different therapists and using different techniques. Then you can decide what works best for you.

 Listen to your body. Book a massage as soon as you think you need one and communicate your goals with your massage therapist and you will achieve the maximum health and wellness benefits from your massage. Most of all, enjoy your massage time. It is your time and it’s all about you.


Do you feel not quite right???

Have you ever felt “not quite right” or suffered vague, non-specific symptoms, but been told by your doctor they can’t find anything wrong? Until doctors can name your illness, they can’t give you their matching treatment.  However, in the meantime your body may be busily heading in the direction of an illness. Wouldn’t it be better to stop that process in its track now before it becomes such a big problem that it can be medically ‘named’?

When your doctor orders blood tests, they are generally only interested when your test results fall outside of their reference ranges.


Reference ranges graphic


Optimal health is actually represented by a much narrower area within these reference ranges. Lets refer to this as the ‘gold zone’.  Often this is in the centre, although depending on what is being tested, this may fall towards the top or bottom end of the reference range. This ‘gold zone’ also varies from individual to individual according to things such as your gender, age and genetics. Your Naturopath can advise you where the optimal ‘gold zone’ should fall for you.

When your results are in the red zone, well outside of the reference range, this is when your doctor is fantastic at identifying a disease process and giving you potentially life saving treatment.

The in between, blue zone, which is still within the reference range but not indicating optimal health, is where your Naturopath can work their magic. It is the zone where you don’t feel yourself and know something is not quite right. This is generally your body’s way of letting you know that something is either lacking or out of balance and now is the time to right that before it progresses into something more serious.

So next time you get the all clear from the doctor but you still feel that something is not quite right, take your results to a Naturopath and find out what it feels like to get back into the ‘gold zone’ of optimal health.


Rebecca Stevens is the Naturopath at the Centre of Wellbeing. Please do not hesitate to contact Rebecca for more information or to make an appointment for a consultation. 03 9763 0033.

Touch is very important.



Happy BabyBaby massage may seem superfluous or silly to some people, but it does have significant health benefits. In fact, touch plays a much more important role in human development than scientists first imagined. Consider these facts: Skin is by far the largest of all of our sense organs. It develops early in utero – at less than 8 weeks the sense of touch is already highly developed – before there are eyes or ears.

By Dr. Alan Greene – Practicing Paediatrician


Baby massage has been increasing in popularity for many years. More and more parents want to learn infant massage having heard about the benefits it can provide.

Research has also found that caregivers feel more confident, less stressed and feel a closer bond with their baby after learning infant massage.

Learn safe and effective massage techniques by booking an infant massage session with Jillian call 03 9763 0033

Reflexology. What do you know?

Centre of Wellbeing ReflexologyHave you heard of Reflexology?

Did you know that one human foot contains seven thousand nerve endings, twenty six bones, one hundred and seven ligaments and nineteen muscles? I find that amazing! That makes the foot truly vital. This is where reflexology comes in. Also known as zone therapy, reflexology has been known to heal and relax many people bringing the body into balance and a sense of wellness. Many people in Western society either have never heard of reflexology or are not quite sure what it is. Those who have used this practice love it or have friends that are skeptical about it. Skepticism however usually comes from having a closed mind or not actually knowing enough about the item in question in the first place. What one can be skeptical of is any reflexologist who has no formal or recognized accreditation.

That is why in this article I want to introduce you to and explain to you this amazing ancient healing practice that is a noninvasive and pleasant way to treat almost any health condition. On top of that, I would like to also explain to you how reflexology can actually prevent many health conditions from precipitating in the first place. Reflexology is the practice of working on the pressure points on the hands, feet or even ears. It is sort of like a foot or hand massage, most often however performed on the feet. The big difference is that when the pressure points are activated there may be slight to moderate pain involved if there is a weakness or problem in that area. It is just now that we are in a new era of consciousness, and thus understanding the true potential of the human mind and how energy plays a role in all that, including health and disease.

Reflexology is a well respected and governed body. All reflexologists must be formally trained and certified.

The success of this healing really depends on how open the patient is to receiving it and the quality of the reflexologist performing it.

Shirley Annells is a qualified Diploma level Reflexologist practicing at the Centre of Wellbeing.

www.exampleessays.cInfo – Evolving Wellness   Holistic, Natural, and Green Approach to Optimal Wellness


Why get a massage at your local small business.

Support your local small business.There are a lot of choices today about where, when and who with you get your massage.

There are Spas, franchises in your local shopping centres, or your local small business.

So why get a massage from your local massage therapist?

You can get your massage from the same person every time. This has many advantages. The main one is that we get to know you and we are able to follow a treatment plan that suits you best. You will not have to “tell your story each time”. We also learn your preferences, the pressure that you like and ensure that you are enjoying and getting the best result posible.

We are very good at what we do best. The massage team only do massage and there are only 3 of us. The other staff are specialists in their fields also. We have all under gone extensive training and are required to have continuing ongoing training to maintain our credentials. With this in mind you know that you are getting the best possible treatment for your requirements.

We will call you back. When you call us, sometimes we cannot always get to the phone. All you have to do is leave a simple message and we will call you back as soon as we can. You can also make a booking via our online booking system using our booking system.

Small businesses are important to the community. Your money goes to a local business which then gets spent at other local businesses. There are no franchise fees to pay or big corporates getting a cut. Everything supports the local population.

We care about you because we live amongst you.

Rob Melville is a local massage therapist who has been providing services to Knoxfield since 2000. If you would like to contact Rob he can be found at The Centre of Wellbeing, Anne Road Knoxfield or calling 03 9763 0033.



Improve a lot with just a little.


Improve a lot with just a little.

You are sitting at your desk and working away. It has been a long day you think to your self, you sigh out loud, nobody hears or comments, or do they even care.

Well you do.

Sedentary work patterns will kill productivity especially in the latter part of the day. Many of us will do a big stretch, yawn, make a big (quiet noise), scratch and then settle back down and carry on feeling like we have done something positive.  This small activity actually feels refreshing.


This small activity has just brought more oxygen into your lungs, inturn more oxygen to the brain all this equals clearer thinking, well for a little while until you wind down and do it again.

Sedentary work patterns also have other knock on effects to the body, you can feel lethargic, you may slump in the chair creating postural issues, which can lead to pain, headaches and feelings of ill ease. In the long term this may lead to you wanting to take more sickies and just not be on the top of your game.

What can you do about it?

Quite a bit and it is very simple. Just because you are at work does not mean that you cannot do a little something to improve your general wellbeing. It is said, “30 minutes incremental exercise 3 times a week can make a difference”. This means, raise you heart rate a little for 30 minutes over a day. Not all at once. But over the course of your day.

This will improve the blood flow to all parts of your body. Your muscles, brain and organs will all thank you for it. You will feel better, more alert, be able to concentrate better, in short be more productive.

How do I do it?

The simplest thing to do is to get out of the chair and “stretch your legs”. Don’t wait for the doldrums to set in before you get some movement  into you.

  • Whilst you are waiting at the photocopier or printer do some Standing Calf Raises to get the blood flowing in your lower legs.
  • Hold on the desk and do some squats, they do not have to be gym style, just bend at the knees and lower yourself down to the 45 to start with.
  • Reach for the ceiling to expand your chest and force your breath out as you bring your arms down.
  • Use you imagination. (Stapler for bicep curls and so on).

Things that you do naturally can also be great exercise, and if you enjoy what you are doing then it can become a great habit.

You will feel better.



Rob Melville is a Remedial and Sports Massage Therapist. He has been treating and improving the lives of clients since 2000. Rob is the owner and operator of The Centre of Wellbeing in Knoxfield. Rob can be contacted on or