Ask me to name a lymphatic herb other than Cleavers and Poke Root and I might struggle (sorry Sue!) but some other things stay with us forever. One of my stayers pops into my head every time I eat a carrot.  Every time I make my partner or my kids eat a carrot.  Every time I see those kids in shopping trolleys slurping on those awful yoghurt squeeze pouch thingamabobs and I want to ask their parents…does your child have teeth?  Well when was the last time they ate a carrot?!.  A whole carrot. Yup.

Remember to Chew.

Among many highly esteemed academically aspiring and/or accomplished lecturers at SSNT 25 years ago, I had a few randoms. In particular we had a fantastic grass roots iridology lecturer who appeared to have been born into the profession – so much did she embrace the cause.  Part of me, being an annoying EBM leaning student, was aghast at this old school hippy training and of course the other part, my inner hippy no doubt, relished her EBM-less approach, her ‘just because’ kind of explanations and her incredibly down to earth lovely style of naturopathy.  She was all about helping people to make small changes with their basic diet and lifestyle that of course, when done well, when carried through for a lifetime, create huge impact.

Remember to Chew.

One of her gems was that we humans, with all our horribly processed, dehusked, unfibred, pulversied and unrecognisable ‘food’, have forgotten how to chew and that we all need regular reminding.  And the best most tangible reminder was to ensure we ate one whole big raw carrot at least once a week.  The whole carrot.  Because you see it’s one food item where chewing is not negotiable.  Chew or die 🙂

I have loved this piece of advice for it’s truth and it’s simplicity.  I believe it, I still use it and I know it to be true. But I’ve upped the ante…eat a whole carrot everyday. Food re-education 101.

When I eat the carrot.  I slow down, I concentrate on the process, I chew.

So although we occasionally misbehaved in that particular class, under the illusion we were smarter than this lovely mature and wise hippy…She wins.  I’m sharing just one gem but she had many. Thanks to her and thanks to all the randoms who offered me some of the best non-EBM naturopathy which I have held onto, lived, practised, passed on and cherish to this day. After all it is the small things, Remember to Chew, not the biochemical pathways, our patients keep for life and live by.

And for those EBM junkies not prepared to take my and Helen’s word for this one…check this inverse relationship between the ability to chew and depression! So, as Mark Wahlqvist said at the ASLM conference about walking..’when you can’t anymore, you’ll want to’…seems that the same just might apply to chewing!

Remember to Chew.

Are you hanging out for the next edition of Update in Under 30? Did you know you can look through the back catalogue and purchase them individually? The most popular editions include:Gilbert’s girls’ & ‘Dear Doctor – tips on letter writing’ & ‘Are you missing histamine excess?’ but hidden gems include, ‘Absolute Adrenal Fatigue – lessons from a patient with Addison’s disease’ & ‘Investigating Paediatric Behavioural Disorders’