Ferinject | iron infusion

First of all, a huge thumbs up to the lovely team at Prince of Wales Private Hospital in Randwick, Sydney who were on morning shift on Thursday 25 August 2016. What a friendly, lovely team of ladies! I think it was Natalia, Justine & Christina (from Glasgow). I get this thing which is kind of the opposite of “white coat syndrome” where I go into a deep relaxation in hospital bc I feel that I’m surrounded by professionals who can help with almost any issue I may have. So in a way, I zone out. 

I was in hospital today to have an iron infusion (Ferinject) as my levels are so low  – measurement 12, at almost 29 weeks pregnant. This is new since having my last two sons – when I had to gag down revolting iron medicine daily.

They have to monitor baby for half an hour before giving the infusion – of course my baby refused to stay still & then got hiccups. They had to put a third monitor on to try to get an accurate heart rate from the little wriggler. So my monitoring period took longer than normal. After that it was smooth sailing – infusion, followed by saline, followed by more baby monitoring then I was out of there. 

As a side note, the elastic like belts that were used today were given to me & the Midwife asked that to minimise wastage that I bring them back when I have baby. Love to see a bit of sustainability! 

Although I haven’t had the chance to experience the outcome yet, I’m really hopeful I’ll feel more energetic as I have been exhausted. I also think I’ve been inadvertently eating more than I need to as my body seeks iron rich food. Perhaps it is just having an active 5 & 6 year old, along with working 4 days a week & managing a renovation. Life is full, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! 

I hope you’re having a great week 


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The Dirty Dozen

I recently had a discussion with my Mum about organic & she was frustrated due to the perception that “organic = healthier” when there are plenty of organic products filled with sugar, or sugar substitutes crying the claim “sugar free”. This particularly annoys me when it is a product marketed to children & many parents feel they are making a healthier decision by purchasing this product.

I do believe we should be mindful of the so called “dirty dozen”, the fruits & vegetables which retain the most pesticides & chemicals, so ideally are purchased as organic:
1. Apples
2. Celery
3. Capsicum
4. Peaches & nectarines
5. Berries – strawberries, raspberries, blueberries
6. Grapes
7. Spinach
8. Lettuce
9. Cucumbers10. Potatoes

The clean 15 doesn’t mean you always buy conventional, but if you’re always going organic on the Dirty Dozen, you can save some money buying conventional on these:

  1. Onions
  2. Sweet corn
  3. Pineapple
  4. Avocado
  5. Cabbage
  6. sweet peas
  7. asparagus
  8. mangoes
  9. eggplant
  10. kiwi
  11. rockmelon
  12. sweet potato
  13. grapefruit
  14. watermelon
  15. mushrooms

Gluten-free quiche | Thermomix 

We are currently staying with my parents while we renovate – some amazing parts, some difficult. Free use of a Thermomix & never ending supply of fresh rosemary  definitely land in the “pros” column!

1 cup buckwheat groats

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup cashews

1/3 cup (or a touch under) coconut flour

7 eggs (1 for crust / 6 for filling)

1/4 of a sweet potato

2 handfuls baby spinach

1 handful parsley

8 mushrooms

10 olives 

100g organic butter

3 sprigs Rosemary (or thyme)

METHOD

  1. Slice mushrooms & sweet potato  thinly
  2. Throw buckwheat groats, cashews & sunflower seeds in Thermomix. Whizz on about speed 8 for 15 seconds. Check the consistency & if similar to a flour, tip into a mixing bowl
  3. Throw Rosemary into the Thermomix & whizz on speed 10 for 15 seconds. Put in 100g organic butter. Set to 100 degrees for 1 minute on about speed 3. Check it’s melted, otherwise just do another 30 seconds 
  4. Tip nut/seed flours back into the Thermomix, mix well & throw in one organic egg.
  5. Press down into a tin – I used a cake tin as I didn’t have a pie/quiche tin. Cook for 10 mins at 180 degrees.
  6. While the crust is cooking, blend 6 organic eggs with the baby spinach & parsley
  7. Slowly pour the egg/spinach/parsley mix into the crust, add the mushroom slices, sweet potato & olives
  8. Cook for 25 minutes at 180 degrees. Serve immediately, with a fresh green salad (simple dressing of olive oil & lemon compliments this dish well

How do we make Australia healthier?

I look at my experiences differently as a Health Coach. Take last weekend as an example – 5 couples went away on a planned getaway. We booked out an expensive house, indulgent but lovely. I wasn’t drinking as I hit 25 weeks of pregnancy but everyone else enjoyed quite a few drinks. We all enjoyed food in excess – home made gnocchi & pizza, multiple cheese platters, bacon (not for me), eggs, avocado, haloumi, nuts, even a bit of chocolate. In everyone’s defence, this was a special weekend & all admitted they would “suffer for the cause” after!

There was a lot of giggling, swearing (which doesn’t happen at home) & plenty of really fascinating conversations. Having beautiful friends who are a Pediatric Doctor, a lawyer, & a Personal Trainer, I of course opened the floodgates with discussions of obesity, prevention, labelling of foods, obstacles to weight loss in lower-socio economic areas (such as not being safe to walk to school, lack of playgrounds, being unable to afford sports equipment). Then there is the next baffling obstacle: government. I am not a political person, you will not see me protesting or wearing a t-shirt of my preferred political party.

It is incomprehensible to me that as an Australian taxpayer, millions of dollars are spent every year on “fixing” obese patients, yet the Government is not subsidising the factor that contributes to 70% of the problem: diet.

Why aren’t fruit & vegetables subsidised rather than junk food?
Why isn’t more money being spent on pregnant women – educating them how to feed themselves & their future offspring? Rather than “healthy eating guidelines”, a more beneficial guide would be some sample meals.

I firmly believe Government also need to be regulating food packaging more. The words “natural”, “healthy” & “sugar-free” mean nothing. I read the ingredients of every product I buy, especially for my children (yes, I’m that person in the supermarket who agonisingly picks up a packet, reads the ingredients then shakes her head & mutters about how disappointing it is).
Even better, minimise processed foods that contain ingredients – whole fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains (where you can phsyically SEE the grain- eg brown rice, buckwheat), & if you choose to eat them organic eggs, & organic meat.
The health star system is incredibly flawed & misleading to someone uneducated who is making the effort to try for healthier choices. First area it is flawed is by basing the rating on kilojoules. How backward!

It’s interesting how going back to my parents house now, I’ve been telling them (they don’t get a choice!), that they need to implement a few swaps – like:

  • buying organic peanut butter (instead of Aldi or Kraft brand which contains sugar & vegetable oil), & checking there’s nothing added.
  • buying organic eggs (instead of free-range)
  • Checking the ingredients on bread as the cheap ones tend to contain sugar.
  • I buy organic apples & carrots, where Mum is happy with conventional.

Interestingly, my sons also consume more gluten, milk & high-fructose fruits while at my parents.

Last weekend my sons had a sleepover (where they stayed will not be mentioned!) – my 5 year old came home hyperactive & excited to tell me they had Domino’s pizza, “lots” of apple juice & sweet, processed biscuits. He then proceeded to have the worst diarrhoea he’s had in years. I feel strongly that no household should have processed juice, or flavoured milk more than a handful of times a year. Never would be better. How about modelling to children the right way to eat & setting them up for life? 

As a parent, has your mindset changed on future proofing health?