I have been a natural health care practitioner for over twelve years now. In my practice I firmly focus on finding the cause of presenting symptoms or disease with the use of different diagnostic techniques and effective natural therapies, such as herbal medicine, iridology (iris analysis) and kinesiology (muscle testing) and of course nutrition.
In Naturopathy, we believe good health starts with good digestion. In medical literature, the GALT - gut associated lymphoid tissue - is identified as a vital part of the body’s immune system. The basic foundation for good gut conditioning is a healthy and nutrients dense diet.
Herbal medicine has been used for centuries to treat a variety of health conditions. Herbs work on an energetic, as well as physical level, and are a vital part of my treatment protocol.
Iridology (iris analysis) is based on the fact that the human iris has a reflex connection to every organ and tissue of the body through the nervous system. Visual information is sent to the brain via the optic nerves, which then in turn communicates with the iris about the state and health of the organs. The human iris reveals genetic predispositions towards certain health conditions, behavioural characteristics, as well as inherited ‘strength and weaknesses’ of the individual anatomical systems (nervous, digestive, reproductive, detoxification, urinary, cardiovascular, endocrine systems). This is the reason why I consider iris diagnosis to be such an essential part of my practice.
I am also a new clinic weight loss consultant. ‘Ultra Lite Diet’ is an amazingly effective weight loss program based on the science of ketosis (ketogenic diet). This is ‘a life changing’ weight loss and detoxification program through which I help people loose excessive fat fast, educate them about how to sustain their desirable weight, improve their energy levels and increase the feeling of wellness and vitality.
“The most important part of my advice and treatment is to support the patient to restore their own health - and to continue with the means to maintain good health and well-being”.
The initial consultation runs for 90 minutes to allow time for a thorough review of all health issues causing concern and also to allow the patient the time to ask questions and gain confidence in their treatment. If you would like to make an appointment or receive more information, you can contact Veronika directly or call Surfers Health Medical Centre on 55 92 59 99.
- Iridology (Iris Analysis)
- Thyroid Health
- Skin Health
- Food Intolerence Tests
Iridology (Iris Analysis)
Even though iridology only first became internationally recognised in the 20th century, the study of the iris in relation to health has been gaining strength and popularity ever since.
The colour of the iris, its constitution, fibre patterns and pigment accumulation are unique in every individual eye. No two people will ever have the same iris, just as no two will have the same fingerprint.
The iris is a unique marker of our identity and, through naturopathic diagnosis, of our health. After the brain, the eyes are the most complex of organs in our body and process about 36,000 pieces of information every hour.
Iris diagnosis is based on the fact that the human iris has a reflex connection to every organ and tissue of the body through the nervous system. Visual information is sent to the brain via the optic nerves, which then in turn communicates with the iris about the state and health of the organs.
The human iris can reveal genetic predispositions towards certain health conditions and behavioural characteristics, as well as inherited personality traits. Thus it may detect a potential health problem before its physical manifestation. This is the reason why I consider iris diagnosis to be such an essential part of my practice and use it so constantly to assess the health of patients and determine subsequent treatment.
The iris reflects inherent health and psychological weaknesses, as well as the strength of the organism. Whether these potential health dispositions, which show up in the iris, manifest or not depends on the way you live your life. The way you eat, drink, think, how much you love, the ability to forgive, and any psychological, emotional or physical traumas you have gone though. Each and every one has an effect on the body’s biochemistry and in turn, its health and well-being.
Computerised examination of the iris is a non-invasive method which allows me as a practitioner to gather further information about my client’s health and genetics. It nicely compliments other clinical testing and I believe both approaches are very relevant to treatment.
What is detoxification?
Detoxification has a somewhat ring of mystification to it. In the field of natural medicine, it is a process through which the body is purged of unwanted waste and chemical overload on a cellular level, and rejuvenated in the process.
Yet, if we broaden that understanding a little wider, detoxification simply means an ‘inner cleanse’, often taking place on all levels of the body, and in most cases, with a need to involve our thoughts and emotions as well.
You can achieve detoxification in any number of ways. By getting sufficient rest and thus allowing the body to do its job more effectively, by feeding your system healthy, clean nourishing foods, by reducing your exposure to environmental toxins, by avoiding the intake of recreational drugs, alcohol, tobacco and other stimulants.
Detoxification also involves giving support to those organs involved in the ‘clean-up process’ - your liver, kidneys, bowel and skin - and by improving the function of the lymphatic and digestive systems and cleansing the blood through various natural treatments.
Three main reasons to detox
- Detoxification can be seen as a way of reducing obvious physical symptoms such as bloating, irritable bowel syndrome, tiredness, fatigue, headaches, persistent ‘brain fog’, skin rashes or, in some cases, is used as a support to losing weight.
- Detoxification is an effective way of reducing inflammation and toxic build-up that tend to underlie any number of diseases. Health conditions such as infertility, depression, thyroid problems, menstrual irregularities, chronic constipation, chronic fatigue, fatty liver, high liver enzymes, obesity and Type II diabetes, to name a few, can be linked to unhealthy dietary choices, sluggish liver function and elimination system, gut sensitivity, ‘leaky gut syndrome’, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and even heavy metal toxicity.
- A program of detoxification undertaken twice a year can become the healthiest of habits in your fitness and lifestyle regime. It’s a bit like giving your car a regular service to keep it running smoothly and avoiding any breakdowns. Detoxification can help maintain good health, short-circuit development of disease and even reduce your biological age, through the overall improvement it provides.
How do i know if i need to detox and how much time will it involve?
By simply filling in our detoxification questionnaire, we can easily establish a health profile and a clearer picture of any problem areas you might be experiencing. Your results will then be discussed and further assessed during a consultation with an experienced naturopath, who has the skills and training to assess your health needs and determine the most suitable detox program delivering the best results.
Factors such as your medical history, mainstream diet, life style habits, age, occupation, existing diagnosis or health conditions, state of your immune system and digestive function are all relevant in assessing an overall picture of your health and well-being.
The length of any suggested program can vary from an Express Detox, lasting up to three weeks, to a Specialised Gut, Liver or Chelation Detox, lasting between six and 12 weeks.
Thyroid Gland Function
MORE ON THE THYROID GLAND FUNCTION
The following table shows the list of the most common symptoms related to the thyroid gland dysfunction:
The thyroid gland, located on the anterior part of the neck, produces two major hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). These hormones are vital activators of metabolism.
When assessing the function of the thyroid gland, it is crucial and necessary to test not only for the standard TSH, but also for fT3, fT4, reverse T3 and ideally all three types of antibodies. In some instances, I also like to test for the iodine levels.
From my own experience, research and clinical observations, I have summarised the factors affecting the function of the thyroid gland into the following 11 types of categories:
- Nutritional deficiencies: A lack of essential minerals such as selenium, zinc, iodine and tyrosine which play an important role in the conversion of thyroid hormones.
- Genetic predisposition. These can be reflected in the iris constitution Need to check your private iridology report.
- Gut Health: Candida and Bacterial Overgrowth, Parasites and ‘Leaky Gut’: As I mentioned earlier, healthy digestion, assimilation and detoxification are not only an essential part of the strong immune system, but they also form the foundation for the rest of the body to function properly. Bacterial infection can lead to the formation of the biofilm overgrowth of the gut mucosa resulting in severe barrier inflammation, thus compromising its integrity and immune system function. Poor gut health is a very common underlying condition of my thyroid patients. It needs to be addressed and restored before one can expect to see improvement in other ‘thyroid symptoms’.
- Diet and Excessive Exposure to Fluoride: Research shows fluoride in drinking water negatively affects the thyroid, as well as putting additional stress on the kidneys as a detoxification organ. Diet is crucial in this condition and can affect - improve or worsen any health issues, including associated energy levels. Even though there are certain foods, called ‘goitrogens’ that may slow down production of thyroid hormones, I always look at a person’s dietary history and assess each case individually. For example, avoiding dairy products can improve one person’s health dramatically while make no difference in another’s symptoms. Iris diagnosis allows me to see certain genetic predispositions to possible food intolerances. (Please see the Iridology section for further details about this modality).
- Heavy Metals: The metals, such as mercury, cadmium, aluminium and lead as well as excessive copper levels affect not only digestion and liver functions but can also block the absorption of vital nutrients needed for proper thyroid function. Since this exposure may not always be obvious, testing for the heavy metal toxicity can be, in some cases, a vital part of the diagnosis and treatment plan. Hair mineral analysis, blood test and a six-hour provoked urinary challenge are three major screening tests used to assess accumulated heavy metals levels.
- Viruses: Together with heavy metals, viruses negatively impact the immune system and create a toxic overload on the detoxification organs (the bowel, liver, kidneys and lungs). Herbal medicine is a fantastic and efficient way of building the immune system. I swear by it.
- Environmental Chemicals and Toxins: The so-called POPs (industrial and farming chemicals, pesticides, phthalates, chlorinated phenols and hydrocarbons) have been linked to several diseases including metabolism impairment and are deemed to have a negative effect on mitochondrial and thyroid function.
- Chronic Inflammation and Obesity: Excessive weight equals excess of adipose (fatty) tissue, which is a main storage site for toxin accumulation. Toxin storage = chronic inflammation = poor immune system. Gut inflammation is associated with many autoimmune diseases including Graves’ or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Poor dietary choices, chronic stress and constant pessimism, abuse of any of the stimulants, such as coffee, alcohol, soft drinks, sugar and recreational drugs, are major causes of increased inflammation in the body. (More details on the causes and conditions related to obesity are stated in the Weight Loss section).
- Hormonal Imbalance and Oestrogen Dominance: Low progesterone and high oestrogen levels are contributors to a typical overweight, ‘thyroid female hormonal pattern’ in a majority of my thyroid patients. Exposure to xenoestrogens, POPs, drinking tap water, taking OCP or HRT are among the major factors contributing to such hormonal imbalances. An associated sluggish liver function can also lead to mood changes.
- Prolonged or Chronic Stress Levels: Emotional wellbeing is a base of a good health. Chronic stress levels can lead to overproduction of the adrenal hormones and eventually to chronic fatigue. Adrenal fatigue is linked to a myriad of health problems, including insulin resistance, weight gain, insomnia, anxiety and other hypo/hyperthyroid symptoms.
As you can see, my approach towards treating thyroid conditions is not black and white. It also needs to be realised that two people diagnosed with hypothyroidism can have a completely different ‘driving cause’ and experience very different symptoms.
As complicated as it looks, I can assure you that the changes in your health will be evident within a month of following a specific, personalised treatment plan. Certain testing may be necessary to make sure all possible causes and underlying medical conditions have been eliminated. All you need to your pathway of recovery is your 100 per cent commitment and willingness to take charge of your health.
Our skin reveals a powerful but simple truth - that what we see reflected on the outside is a picture of what is taking place on the inside. The skin provides a mirror, not just of our beauty but also of our health and wellbeing. A story of how our digestive system is working, of what nourishment is delivered through our diet, of how balanced our hormonal system is, and whether or not our body and skin are properly hydrated.
The Skin is Affected By:
- DIET Eating processed and packaged foods, a diet containing a high sugar intake, or one lacking in good quality protein and fresh vegetables not only denies your skin essential nutrients and vitamins, but can also contribute to skin breakouts, blemishes, congestion and a dull, lacklustre complexion.
- FOOD SENSITIVITIES & INTOLERANCES Skin irritations can be triggered by certain foods. Even if the food itself is not necessarily unhealthy, the body can perceive it as a biochemical ‘threat’. Common conditions related to food sensitivities, and in some instances to actual food allergies, are rashes, eczema, itchy skin or even hives. For details on identifying likely intolerant foods, see the Detoxification section and information on Food Detective Blood Test.
- WATER INTAKE & ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS
The adult body is made up of approximately 65 per cent water. As such, it’s advised to consume about 2.5 litres of purified water daily and up to 3.5 litres on days when you exercise. Water not only helps flush out toxins and cell waste but also maintains the balance of body fluids essential for digestion, assimilation, elimination, circulation and transport of nutrients. The body also needs a regular uptake of Essential Fatty Acids (Omega-3, 6, 7 & 9) which are anti-inflammatory and not only serve to reduce inflammation in skin conditions such as dermatitis or psoriasis, but also help keep your skin looking younger, well nourished, with an improved skin texture, a reduction in fine lines.
- HORMONAL IMBALANCES Hormones are powerful messengers in the body, which are in constant communication with each other constantly. Imbalances in the female and male reproductive hormones, the adrenal or stress hormones and the thyroid hormones can indirectly affect the skin. Hormonal acne is commonly seen as congestion and pimples along the jaw line. As with most hormonal conditions, there will usually be mood changes and digestive issues, along with skin breakouts.
- GUT HEALTH & INFLAMMATION In naturopathy, good health starts with good digestion, and the skin is a reflection of that digestive function. The inside is reflected on the outside. For more details on gut health and how it affects the skin, check out the Detoxification and Candida Overgrowth sections.
- EXCESSIVE TOXICITY Skin is a major elimination organ, excreting toxins through sweating, which is why regular exercise and saunas are so beneficial. They encourage the body to sweat, allowing toxins stored in adipose (fatty tissue) to be released. Toxin overload from poor diet, excessive alcohol consumption, sugar intake, cigarette smoking and constant high levels of stress will eventually impact negatively on the skin. A detoxification program undertaken at least twice a year is recommended to effectively rebalance the body. Check out the Detoxification section on our website.
- STRESS Long term stress can negatively affect any bodily function or organ, including the skin. I touched on stress effects in the Thyroid Health section. There are numerous studies which consider chronic stress to be one of the underlying forces behind several skin conditions, especially so because of its associated effect on digestion. One thing is certain, poor digestion does not contribute to healthy, glowing skin.
- LACK OF SLEEP Much has been written about ‘The Beauty Sleep’. The fact is our bodies actually regenerate and detoxify during sleep, so robbing yourself of good quality sleep is like missing out on a nightly beauty mask.
If you suffer from skin disorders, whether it is an auto-immune condition such as psoriasis, an eczema flare-up, teenage acne or simply hormonal skin impurities that come and go, it is well worth investing in the use of natural skin and make-up products. The range featured on our website, which has been researched, trialled and proven to be effective, as well as a healthy natural choice, is free of all chemicals and promises to deliver fantastic results.
Food Intolerance - IgG Food Intolerance Test and it's Priniciples
‘Food Detective intolerance test’ is the only IgG antibodies in clinic test which provides my patients with the immediate results – at the end of the consultation the results are ready to be interpreted. This is a huge advantage in comparison to other clinical food intolerance blood testing, which provides the results within two or even three weeks.
What is IgG?
IgG antibodies are produced by our immune system and form about 80% of all antibodies in human body. IgG is found mainly in the lymphatic tissue, blood of course and the intestines. Their main role is to protect the body against bacteria and viruses by neutralising the toxins.
IgG food intolerance test measures a delayed response to specific foods which may take months for the symptoms to appear after initial exposure to the ingested food. Thus IgG test is not a ‘true allergy’ test, which could be life-threatening, but rather measures ‘cumulative intolerances’ – those that body develops against foods eaten frequently and those commonly have a role in the development of chronic diseases.
High IgG Antibodies Are Associated With:
- ‘Leaky Gut Syndrome’ – is a state when irritation and inflammation of the intestinal lining allows undigested protein molecules to ‘pass through’ or ‘leak through’ the intestinal wall into the blood stream!
- Intestinal dysbiosis – bacterial overgrowth
- IBS (diarrhoea & constipation)
- Gastrointestinal inflammatory disorders, such as:
- Crohn’s disease , Ulcerative colitis & Inflammatory bowel disease
- Systemic inflammatory disorders
- Poor Immune system – since 70% of immune system lies in the gut!
- Some auto-immune conditions, such as:
- Rheumatoid arthritis & Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
Other Common Symptoms of Food Intolerance are:
- Anxiety (chronic or acute)
- Arthritic conditions
- Bed wetting
- Brain fog
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- General malaise
- Itchy skin
- Sleep disturbances
- Water retention
- Weight control issues
What Follows Next?
The ‘Food Detective Test’ tests for IgG antibodies of 59 commonly eaten foods and is performed by using a small blood sample from the finger-prick. After around 40 minutes the results will show:
- Foods that are ‘safe to eat’ or cause no IgG reaction
- Foods that are ‘mildly’ irritating to the body (moderate reaction)
- Foods that are highly reactive and will be needed to be avoided for some time
Identifying the ‘problematic’ foods may be enough to improve health condition of some patients. However for those presenting with systemic inflammatory conditions or auto-immune diseases might have to further address their ‘gut health’ to ensure the gastrointestinal tract is functioning well.