Tag / children

Back to School: Two Must Have Supplements for Your Kids

As the beautiful summer slowly comes to an end many parents are preparing for the upcoming school season. With new lunch boxes and sharpened pencils also come new viruses and colds. There are many things we can do to strengthen our children’s immune systems, including ensuring that they get a good night’s sleep, eat a wholesome diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, and keep their daily sugar intake below 30g. Supplemental supports can also be very helpful in keeping young immune systems strong. There are many, many options on the shelves. Here are two that I feel are essential.

Roundup & Damaged Microbiomes

I’d like to share with you a youtube video I recently watched on the website of one of the labs I use frequently. It’s an interview with Dr. Stephanie Seneff, an MIT Research Scientist who found herself researching glyphosate in her quest to understand the growing prevalence of Autism in North America (about 1 in 66 children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Canada). Glyphosate is the primary chemical in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup and is considered by many accounts to be the most popular herbicide globally.

Introducing The Thriving Child Series


As parents we want nothing more than to see our child healthy and succeed. We strive to protect them from the dangers life throws their way and to provide them with healthy food, a loving home, positive environment and plenty of opportunities for them to grow into their greatest version of themselves. As you know, circumstances don’t always go according to plan and children don’t always cooperate. I am a parent as well, who understands how you feel; I’ve been there and have struggled too. What if you had a program that would help provide you with a framework and a solid foundation of health for your child in which you could build upon?

What is Hypnobabies?

hypnobabiesMany people have heard of Hypnobirthing and wonder if Hypnobabies is the same thing. Hypnobabies is a specific method of Hypnotic Childbirth, which teaches real medical hypnosis techniques, creating an automatically peaceful, relaxing and more comfortable pregnancy, a calm confident Birth Partner, and an easier, much more comfortable birthing for our Hypno-Mom. How is this possible?

Hypnobabies was adapted with permission from Master Hypnotherapist Gerald Kein’s “Painless Childbirth Program” techniques.

Avoid Sunscreen Hazards

skin care bravenetNot only is your skin your largest organ, but it is metabolically active, which means that it works hard to protect you from harmful external influences. Your skin contains many of the same enzymes present in your liver for chemical detoxification, and it houses immune cells that ward off pathogenic bacteria. Further, up to 65% of what you put on your skin may be absorbed into your bloodstream and lymph system. It’s important to choose your sunscreen carefully so that you can apply it liberally and often without concerns for your safety.  Follow these quick tips to protect you and your family this summer: 

Anxiety in Children

with child

By Dr. Angela Hunt, BSc ND

 When I started in naturopathic medicine I was so excited to work with kids. I assumed I would be treating lots of upset tummies and stubborn rashes. Don’t get me wrong, I do commonly treat gastrointestinal issues and eczema in little ones. Yet, there is another condition that I treat far more and it may surprise you. Anxiety is by far one of the most common ailments I see in children walking through my door. I never would have guessed that stress and anxiety are so rampant in our children, but research confirms my experience and shows that anxiety is on the rise.

Several studies show consistently that there has been a dramatic increase in anxiety and depression among children and adolescents over the past three decades. It should not be shocking that with this increase we have also seen a marked increase in the prescribing of anti-anxiety medications among pediatric populations. Children as young as two years old have been reported to be on Prozac (a common anti-anxiety medication). This is clearly alarming, and I’d like to go over what anxiety looks like in children, why it is on the rise, and some naturopathic alternatives to pharmaceuticals. 

Smart Phones and Tablets Impacting Youth

Texting spine

Christine Campbell, Physiotherapist

As technology advances, the number of device related injuries that I see in clinic rises, especially with children. As many of us know, the number of children and teens using mobile devices and the amount of time spent utilizing said devices is increasing dramatically. One of the issues with mobile device use is the posture that is adapted, which causes movement dysfunction and pain.

A survey recently conducted by MediaSmart in 2014 indicated that 25% of kids 9-10 years old have their own cell phone. ParticipACTION reports that children (in 2015) spent, on average, 7.5 hours/day in front of a screen.  Each year these numbers rise and the impact on our children’s health is evident.

Lyme Disease Prevention Plan

Dr. Sonya Nobbe, ND

KFL&A Public Health reports that in 2013, 23% of the ticks brought in for testing were positive for B. Burgdorferi, the infectious agent of Lyme disease. Our region is considered high risk for Lyme disease. Additional infections carried by ticks (collectively known as Lyme co-infections), were not evaluated. Please educate yourself, friends, and family members about tick-bite prevention and treatment. I’ve thoroughly researched and summarized some guidelines to keep in mind this season:

1. Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved clothing with pants tucked into socks, when outdoors in tall grasses and wooded areas so that ticks are more visible.

2. A product containing 30% DEET is officially recommended for adults. For children younger than 12 years, Health Canada recommends using a product with 10% DEET. However, the repelling effects at this concentration may only last for 1 to 2 hours. Alternate approved chemicals for children or sensitive individuals include products with Icaridin (e.g. Avon Skin So Soft, some MEC and OFF! brand products).

3. Non-approved but well researched natural repellants include Lemon Eucalyptus oil (Eucalyptus citriodora), Labrador tea oil (Rhododendron tomentosum), Juniper (Juniperus virginia), and Marjoram (Origanum majorana). These can be mixed in a ratio of 12 parts pure grain alcohol (95% if available), to 1 part oil combination, and applied liberally with a dark glass spritzer bottle over clothing.

The Effects of Digital Media Use on Early Childhood Brain Development and Self-Regulation

~ Dr. Holly WhiteKnight, ND

Media use by children and adolescents has reached an unprecedented level, and is ubiquitous. A recent study reported that Canadian children spend 8.5 hours per day engaged in sedentary media activities. Those under the age of two are spending 2.5 hours a day in front of a television. Youth also report using more than one device at a time. Both quantity and quality of media consumption have effects on brain development and the behavior of youth.

A developing brain is a sensitive organ that slowly builds from the bottom up.

Technology and Energy

~ Sarah Knight, PhD, RM

Interacting with digital media can affect our energy systems. One immediate and noticeable impact of sitting in front of a screen is that it brings the attention away from the body and up to the head. Think about it – if you are engrossed in whatever you are doing on the computer you may even forget that you have a body! You become a floating head, perhaps with a set of arms if you are lucky. Where our attention goes our energy flows. So, “screen-time” often results in a feeling of being ungrounded. This feeling can manifest as irritation, oversensitivity, anxiety, or inability to concentrate.

Non-toxic Sunscreen for Kids

Please view our entire June e-newsletter, Kids and Teens and their unique health needs, here.

Dr. Sonya Nobbe, ND

For years we’ve been taught that sunburns cause skin cancer and that sunscreens are protective. Did you know though that many agencies are now arguing that there is actually very little scientific evidence to prove that sunscreen prevents skin cancer, and that many ingredients in these products are quite harmful themselves? Though this may be very true, it’s most important to consider that a lack of evidence doesn’t prove ineffectiveness so that, simply put, it appears we simply lack the evidence to make an easy informed decision one way or the other. So what’s a parent to do?

Pediatric Naturopathic Medicine

Please view our entire June e-newsletter on Kids and Teens, here.

Dr. Sonya Nobbe, ND

Children are not born as the “clean slate” we once thought of them as. Our environment is over-burdened with toxic chemicals and babies are exposed to many of these while still in mom’s tummy. Even breast milk, which is the healthiest food for a newborn child, can be laden with fat-soluble toxins from mom’s body. The good news is that children are generally quite resilient and they often respond very well to healthcare approaches that promote healthy functioning of the entire body. This differs from some approaches that address uncomfortable symptoms by suppressing normal body processes, sometimes until a child “grows out of” their particular concern.

Many complementary and integrative medicines, such as Naturopathic Medicine, Osteopathy, and advanced forms of Reiki, treat conditions by identifying and treating where or how the body is having difficulty fixing itself. By gently supporting the body’s natural ability to heal, much of the guesswork in medicine is removed and optimal health, (rather than simply the absence of disease), is possible.

Babies and Energetic Touch

Please view our entire June e-newsletter on Kids and Teens, here.

Carol Belanger, BA, RM, BHS

Babies appreciate contact to a great degree. From time of conception, they exist in a comforting world of contact. They are both stimulated and soothed by their growing sense of touch and by their other senses as well. From my experience with babies in utero, they respond wonderfully to energy work through enhanced energetic touch. This continues after they are born too.

It can be sensory overload for a newborn or young infant in our busy, stimulating, steady-paced world. This presents an environment of a lot of input for them. Resting helps restore their sensory calm and soothing, but infants may need this calming and soothing even before a rest happens.