It’s week six in her Body Makeover Challenge and Karen’s feeling more energised and positive, she’s busting out the steps and has some the impressive results on her stomach – something’s working – oh, and she got the results of her stool test (fascinating!)
I have felt much better this week and was absolutely over the moon when my daughter, Sidnie passed her driving test! She only turned 17 two months ago and is now driving herself about – now the worry really begins.
I went to Charlotte Watt’s yoga on Tuesday night and felt amazing afterwards. It was an incredibly relaxing yoga session which is just what I needed as I had been on a work related training day in Hampshire all day and had had a long drive beforehand. I also went to the De Stress Effect case study meeting on Friday night with my new yoga bolster, blocks and blanket. I am so glad I invested in the bolster, it makes such a difference and I didn’t quite realise exactly how many different poses you could do with it.
I met with Charlotte to discuss the results of my stool test, (more information below), and she said that my candida levels were completely normal, which was a complete shock to me as this is something I thought would be high considering I have been taking large amounts of antibiotics for the past 24 years. Candida is a fungus that can grow in your intestines and can lead to thrush and other issues like sugar cravings and tiredness. It can be caused by taking too many antibiotics.
This week I found out I have gut dysbiosis; an imbalance in good gut bacteria, low levels are common in people who put on weight
Charlotte said that’s a general assumption for a lot of people, but she doesn’t often see it overgrown. The results were showing that I do have gut dysbiosis; an imbalance in the good bacteria (or probiotics) that need to be in good levels in our digestive tracts for digestion, immunity and detoxification. Low levels of these are common in those who put on weight and they have shown to be important for how we cope with stress. She explained that I have low levels of the two most common bacterial strains – lactobacillus and bifidobacteria – and it has been shown that when these are low, our stress response keeps on going. Probiotics are now being referred to as psychobiotics as they play such an important part in our mental health.
Probiotics are now being referred to as psychobiotics as they play such an important part in our mental health.
I had being taking these in BioCare Bio Acidophilus Forte Plus for a while, so Charlotte said they may have been even lower before. She recommended I continue with these, but add in Optibac Saccharomyces Boulardii – another probiotic to help them stick to the gut wall. My stool pH was too alkaline (showing that there is also putrefaction in the colon…lovely!) so they will help correct that and create the right environment for a healthy gut balance to flourish. As I’ve been having some loose stools and skin issues, this should help. To correct the pH levels it was also advised that I reduce animal proteins and include more probiotic natural yoghurt, apple cider vinegar, and introduce bitter foods such as lemon juice and bitter fresh herbs like rocket, mint, coriander and parsley as Charlotte recommends in her new book The De-Stress Effect. To help my skin further (and also sleep and female hormones) she also recommended that I take Biocare P-5-P Complex which is an active form of vitamin B6.
To correct the pH levels it was also advised that I reduce animal proteins and include more probiotic natural yoghurt, apple cider vinegar, and bitter foods such as lemon juice and fresh herbs like rocket, mint, coriander and parsley
On Wednesday I had my Skype session with Charlene Hutsebaut. I explained to Charlene that I was feeling more energetic this week. I did only manage two out of the four strength training sessions this week due to work commitments, and she said that I should just aim to do two sessions a week but increase the number of sets that I do during each session. I feel that this is more realistic for my schedule.
Exercise this week:
Tuesday: No dog walking today as I had to attend a training day in Hampshire. Total: 7527 steps.
Wednesday: Morning 45 minute walk, evening 20 minute walk. Total: 13,032 steps. Ten minute strength training routine.
Thursday: Morning 45 minute walk, evening 25 minute walk. Total: 12,947 steps.
Friday: Morning 45 minute walk. De Stress Effect Group with one hour of yoga included. Total: 10,756 steps.
Saturday: Morning one hour long walk. Worked all day, 12,631 steps.
Sunday: One hour walk and ten minute strength training routine. Total: 11,894 steps
Monday: Morning 45 minute walk, no evening walk… Total: 10,624 steps.
The table below shows Karen’s measurements from Week One to now
Breakfast: Smoked salmon with cucumber and small piece of rye bread.
Lunch: Mashed avocado with cheese oat cakes
Dinner: Prawn curry with sweet potato based tikka masala curry, with brown basmati rice and quinoa.
Charlotte Watts is a nutritionist and yoga teacher whose work has focused on how nutrition and yoga can meet to help people cope with the demands we face in the 21st century. Her practice and teaching of mindfulness weaves these together and has culminated in her new book The De-Stress Effect: Rebalance Your Body’s Systems for Vibrant Health and Happiness. She has also authored The De-Stress Diet (with Anna Magee) and 100 Best Foods for Pregnancy and 100 Foods to Stay Young. Find out more at charlottewattshealth.com. Charlotte is also Healthista’s Calmista blogger. Follow Charlotte @cwnutritionyoga.
Charlene Hutsebaut B.P.E, B.Ed, CSCS is a personal trainer, pilates instructor, brand ambassador, speaker and writer with over 15,000 client hours and 22 years of experience in the fitness industry. Charlene runs her Personal Training Consultancy in London at the exclusive St. Pancras Hotel Spa and is a sought after inspirational corporate wellness speaker. She has a regular fitness column in Total Sports Performancemagazine as well as for Passport – the inflight magazine for Monarch Airlines and has written for Bodyfit, Prima, FitPro, Fitness Life New Zealand and has been featured in London, Fabric, Grove, Woman, Natural Healthmagazines, as well as The Daily Mail and Express. To find out more about Charlene, please visit her website. Follow charlene @positivelyslim.
Karen’s stool test was provided by Biological Testing Services, (BTS), the UK’s leading low cost Laboratory service specialising in mainly digestive micro-biological Lab tests. The UK principal is Naturopath and Nutritional Therapist Jacquie Lane ND dipNT NTC CNHC, lecturer for The College of Naturopathic Medicine. All testing is conducted in the German laboratory run by micro-biologist Dr. Reinhard Hauss, PhD, and Dr. Helga Hauss, MD, Dermatology Consultant. In Germany all laboratories are supervised by the health authorities. BTS offers a service to Practitioners and Therapists and also to clients directly who want to get to the root cause of ongoing IBS type symptoms of bloating, diarrhoea, constipation and wind.
Check out our previous Body Makeover Challenges…
BODY MAKEOVER CHALLENGE 1: Charmian Walker Smith
BODY MAKEOVER CHALLENGE 2: Caroline Williams
BODY MAKEOVER CHALLENGE 3: Thelma Mensah
BODY MAKEOVER CHALLENGE 4: Anastasia
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