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Pure Natural Pregnancy

Are you pregnant and looking for natural solutions and the answers that mainstream prenatal care providers simply don't have the time to discuss with you? Sarah Keen interviews midwives, doulas, hypnobirthers, and many more on a quest to understand how we can improve our pregnancies and our births. How? By knowing more, thinking more, questioning more, and trusting our bodies' amazing innate ability to carry and birth a baby!

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Optimum Nutrition in Pregnancy

Sally Beare is a nutritional therapist based in Bristol. She originally trained at the UK College of Nutrition and Health in London, following the discovery of a new level of health, which emerged when she changed the food on her plate. She is registered with the Nutritional Therapy Council and the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council, which set the highest standards for nutritional therapy practice in the UK. Sally has written books, and also worked with the Natural Health Clinic, taking nutrition workshops to schools in Bristol as part of a project called Engaging Minds. She is also a member of Mums Say No to GMOS, who are campaigning to rid our supermarket shelves of GMO products, as a proactive protective move, rather than wait and see what effect these GMOs have on our population’s future health. As if that isn’t enough, as well as being a mother of two, she has recently released her latest book, The Stacking Plan, which guides readers through a ten week plan to stack healthy habits on top of one another to optimise your diet and optimise your health, and will soon be the resident nutrition columnist for Juno magazine. In this episode: We had a great chat, and discussed an awful lot given the restrictions of time. Sally is hugely knowledgeable and I really learnt a lot from talking to her. She’s not prescriptive in a one size fits all approach, and offers many ways in which the mother to be can improve her nutritional profile to help her enjoy an energetic and vitality filled pregnancy, along with providing the best nutrients for her growing baby. Overview of the differences between the scope and practice of a nutritional therapist and dietician Common nutrient deficiencies seen in pregnancy Omega 3 deficiency and post natal depression Probiotics and the micro biome Choosing a quality probiotic supplement and how fermented foods can help Why locally sourced organic food is a better choice if available to you The “cocktail effect” of pesticides and how the body stores them in your fat cells How to prioritise your organic purchases Why genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in the feed of non-organic animals should be a concern to us as consumers Why Mums Say No To GMO’s are campaigning for Glyphosate to be kept out of our food chain How GMOs are sneaking into our supermarkets Sally’s book, The Stacking Plan Resources: Nutritional Therapy Council Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council Probiotic brands – Cytoplan, Biocare, Megafood PAN Network Clean 15 & Dirty dozen Mums say no to GMO Beyond GM GMO Education


16 Mar 2017

Rank #1

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Boost Oxytocin for a Natural Birth

Mark is registered as a midwife and nurse. He is an author, podcaster, speaker and general good guy who loves people! Mark travels around the country teaching men, and same sex partners, about the importance of their role in pregnancy and birth. "The choices I have made in my professional life have been shaped by this gregarious inclination. I have trained and worked as a Nurse, Midwife, Teacher in Further Education, hypnotherapist, NLP trainer, out reach youth worker. I still work as a Midwife offering a birth education through a programme called, Birthing For Blokes (@Birthing4Blokes), work and play often merge for me." You can find Mark on Facebook, twitter & on his website. In the episode In the second episode, we discuss the importance of oxytocin, the hormone of love, and how your birth partner can make this hormone as plentiful as possible! He provides ways in which your partner can make deposits into the oxytocin bank, so it's definitely one to listen to together one quiet evening! We also discuss the importance of evidence within decision making, but also the limitations of evidence based care too.  Resources: Episode 003 Paul Ekman - "Emotions Revealed: Understanding Faces and Feelings" Cordelia Fine - "Delusions of Gender: The Real Science Behind Sex Differences" Mark Harris - "Men, Love & Birth"   Don't forget to join the Pure Natural Pregnancy community on Facebook and Twitter


16 Mar 2017

Rank #2

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Child development begins in the womb

Child development is something every parent is concerned about - we all want our children to be the best! As with many health-related issues, we often wait until something is wrong before seeking help. When we wait until school age tests to be certain how our child is developing, it's often past the critical period to be able to see the biggest change to their brain function. In this episode, I talk to Dr Marty Rosen who teaches internationally on the topic of how skull movement affects brain development in babies and children. Often babies have small but noticeable asymmetries in their skulls, which can alter the way the child's brain develops. This is sometimes due to a traumatic delivery, like forceps pressure, sometimes due to sleeping positions, but often the baby's positioning inside Mum's tummy has a big effect too. As a baby's brain begins to develop before he/she is born, by the time of birth, the foundations are in place for this growth and development to continue through infancy. A whopping 80-90% of brain growth occurs within those first two years, so this is a really important episode for all parents to listen to. One of the biggest things I hope to do with this podcast is to encourage change before things "go wrong", and Marty is absolutely on the ball with that message too. But be warned, Marty is an absolute wealth of knowledge, and he talks fast.... really fast! So you may have to rewind back a few times, but I promise you, it's worth it. What this man doesn't know, is not worth knowing. About Marty Rosen Martin G. Rosen, DC, is a 1981 graduate of Life Chiropractic College.  He lives and practices with his wife Nancy Watson, D.C and his daughter Erin Rosen, D.C. in Wellesley, Massachusetts.  Dr. Rosen taught his first chiropractic seminar in 1979 and has traveled the world teaching SOT®, pediatrics, cranial adjusting, practice management and chiropractic philosophy and neurology ever since.  For over 33 years, he has been at the forefront of chiropractic pediatric and specifically pediatric craniopathy.  He has written multiple books and research studies as well as run a successful family chiropractic practice.   Dr. Rosen has dedicated his life and inspired thousands of others in the pursuit of excellence in the application in the art and science of chiropractic.  His "Pediatric Chiropractic Care" book is a "must have" book for those chiropractors looking to become experts in the care of children. He is widely active on social media, and you can find him on Facebook in many forms: his personal page, his office, his paediatric page and he's also on twitter. In this episode, we discuss: How a baby’s brain begins to develop before he/she has even been born The formation of synapses (connections) between different parts of the brain begins in utero! Foundations are needed to build the basis for the baby to grow on, and reach developmental milestones At birth we have almost all the raw materials to develop upon 80-90% of brain growth occurs in the first 2 years The survival part of the brain (cerebellum) grows 240% in the first year of life Social developmental milestones are reached as a result of the nervous system growth Psychologists describe the first 2 years as the period for most dynamic growth Why it’s so important to identify children at risk of neuro-developmental delay within the first year A lot of the issues we are seeing in children at school age actually occurred within the first year of life The health of our future generations is declining due to the onslaught of environmental insults Children need a nervous system that is able to deal with the insults in order to develop appropriately, which is the aim of the chiropractic paradigm Environmental insults can be physical (falls, bumps to the head, junior sports), chemical (air & water pollution, electromagnetic fields from mobile phones and iPads, food), emotional (lack of bonding) & sometimes spiritual The nervous system usually adapts, but sometimes compensates The three parts of the nervous system and what they control within the body: central, peripheral and autonomic How a stretched spinal cord (from forward postures such as children playing on iPads, or even from a straightforward birth) affects the developing brain and body, as a result of changing the tone of the nervous system Compensatory patterns - what they are and how we get them - if we have too many things to compensate for, then we can’t develop as well or as quickly as intended How nerves from the upper neck feed directly into the brain, and while glitches may not show up immediately, as different areas of the brain begin to develop, differences are noticed How an overloaded nervous system can begin to balance once subluxations are corrected Different children with different personalities will show their inability to adapt in different ways, but it all comes down to the same thing - an overwhelmed nervous system How the skull is designed to allow the brain to grow, but with altered movement in the skull bones, the whole system down to the coccyx is affected - this changes the speed of nerve reaction times Slower nerve reaction times may result in slower learning The younger you are, the better the ability to adapt Symptoms aren’t a good indicator of whether a child needs to be checked How birth affects the infant’s nervous system Marty’s preference is to check all babies within 7-10 days Final thought: “It is imperative to have your child’s spine and nervous system checked by a competent chiropractor as soon as possible to make sure that you give them the greatest opportunity to develop their optimum potential: neurologically, immune system, socially, emotionally & physically” Further research: Pediatric Chiropactic Care by Martin Rosen, DC www.drmartinrosen.com Journal of Vertebral Subluxation McCoy Press International Chiropactic Pediatric Association SOTO-USA  SOTO-Europe


5 May 2017

Rank #3

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Breathe Through Your Fear of Birth

Catherine teaches adults to breathe fully, and thus to heal unresolved trauma that affects them in their day-to-day life. They may not be conscious of this link with the time of their birth. The name Rebirthing Breathwork came about because about 80% of clients remember their birth as a time of stress and change. Much of this is caused by Western birth practices (such as cutting cord before baby is breathing) but also by the fear of the adults present as the baby is learning to breathe. These foundations can all be rebuilt. She has had 3 natural drug-free births, 2 of them home births. She breastfeed long-term including tandem nursing, and was a breastfeeding counsellor for 19 years. Most of her work is 1-2-1, and she is also offering breath workshops to birth professionals “A day for healing your own birth experience”. She’s available via her website, Twitter, and Facebook In this episode, we discuss: What is rebirthing and breath work? Why your brain pays attention to certain things more than others How the energy or “vibes” in the birth room is picked up by the baby How the way we learn to breathe as a baby can impact our future How babies learn about their environment through their senses Why rebuilding your foundations isn’t about putting a veneer over your past, but accepting a new conclusion in the present A demonstration of how you can use breath work immediately How the time immediately following birth shapes health for life! New workshops that Catherine is releasing for birth professionals Resources: Dr Eva Detko Holistic path to Health podcast interview Alexia Leachman Fear Free Childbirth podcast interview “Before Breath, Before Birth” blog post What is breath work? A4 info sheet download Website explanation of Rebirthing Breathwork: http://luann.machighway.com/~oxfordpa/catherineholland.co.uk/rebirthing.html Website excerpts from Catherine’s Rebirthing book Youtube videos: including 20 breaths exercise, breastfeeding,  and breath meditation


16 Mar 2017

Rank #4

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Calm Births Rock

Suzy Ashworth is an author, pregnancy coach and a mindset & marketing mentor for pre and postnatal specialists. As founder of The Calm Birth School and The Baby Business School, she has a passion for showing women exactly why they can and should believe in themselves, empowering them to create mind-blowing birth experiences. When she is not working and entertaining her two children Caesar and Coco, mainly she’s sleeping/growing another human being as she incubates the latest addition to her family. You can find Suzy on Facebook, twitter, instagram & on her website. In the episode In this episode, we discuss the foundations of hypnobirthing, what it is and what it isn’t. She touches on the science and the woo woo, and also how hypnobirthing isn’t just for those wanting a home birth, but can be used in any type of birth, and in life in general! We have a chat about our own pregnancies and generally have a good laugh! Resources: Episode 004 Suzy Ashworth – The Calm Birth School Book The Calm Birth School free videos YouTube Videos for hypnobirth and hypnobirthing water birth


16 Mar 2017

Rank #5

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How to be a Great Birth Partner

In this episode of the Pure Natural Pregnancy podcast, Sarah talks to Mark Harris from Birthing for Blokes. Mark Harris Mark is registered as a midwife and nurse. He is an author, podcaster, speaker and general good guy who loves people! Mark travels around the country teaching men, and same sex partners, about the importance of their role in pregnancy and birth. “The choices I have made in my professional life have been shaped by this gregarious inclination. I have trained and worked as a Nurse, Midwife, Teacher in Further Education, hypnotherapist, NLP trainer, out reach youth worker. I still work as a Midwife offering a birth education through a programme called, Birthing For Blokes (@Birthing4Blokes), work and play often merge for me.” You can find Mark on Facebook, twitter & on his website. In this episode In this first episode, we discuss the brain, hormones and the differences between men and women. We also have an introduction to the physiology of the partner’s role, and why they are so crucial to the pregnant woman. Resources Simon Baron Cohen – “The Essential Difference: Men, Women and the Extreme Male Brain” Louann Brizendine – “The Female Brain” and also, “The Male Brain” Cordelia Fine – “Delusions of Gender: The Real Science Behind Sex Differences” John Gray – “Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus” and “Why Mars and Venus Collide” Mark Harris – “Men, Love & Birth”


16 Mar 2017

Rank #6

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Acupuncture in Pregnancy

Chantal has been practising as a holistic therapist since 2007 offering massage, aromatherapy, reflexology, and various types of massage. Her interest in pain management guided her to do my BSc in Acupuncture which she completed in 2012. After having twins in her final year at uni, an interest in fertility, pregnancy and labour developed.  Now as a mum of 4, she wanted her children to enjoy the benefits of acupuncture so completed her paediatric oriental medicine practitioner training in March 2014. She can be reached through Facebook or her website Before coming across Chantal on Facebook via a mutual friend, I had very little knowledge of acupuncture. I’ve followed Chantal’s page – Dragonfly Acupuncture Leeds – for a while now and I really enjoy what she has to share. It made perfect sense for the person that introduced me to the principles of acupuncture to introduce them to you too. (Although I do sheepishly have to admit I still haven’t yet experienced a session!) In this episode: What’s covered on an acupuncture degree course The difference between traditional acupuncture and dry needling, which may be offered by a chiropractor, physiotherapist or osteopath Why people might visit an acupuncturist Breech birth and moxibustion – how it works Reasons why breech babies sometimes don’t turn, no matter what you try How the seasons might affect the energy of babies How meridians link different areas of the body How Chantal’s four year old twins describe their Mum’s job!!


9 Mar 2017

Rank #7

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Surviving Child Abuse then Being Pregnant

I loved this discussion with Susanne – be forewarned, it’s the equivalent of eavesdropping on us in a coffee shop. It’s not an information overload episode, it’s a chat about our experiences. We both have been diagnosed with PTSD following different circumstances, and our experiences are vastly different, yet remarkably similar. We both agree that there needs to be more awareness of how this can affect a pregnancy – not only for the woman, but for her partner, and her care givers. Midwives and obstetric consultants should also listen to this for a valuable insight into the mind of a pregnant woman dealing with PTSD. In this episode: The importance of language and some examples of what to be aware of when talking to someone with PTSD – especially trigger words What a PTSD episode can look and feel like (of course everyone’s experiences are different) so you know you’re not alone if you’re experiencing these weird and wonderful emotions Very basic ways to support someone who’s dealing with PTSD before you can find professional help Very basic EFT – aka tapping Recognising that you need help and how to ask for it Why a healthy baby is not all that matters A little about KG hypnobirthing Resources: Positive Birth Movement online catalogue of in-person groups and fantastic articles to read Katherine Graves’ hypnobirthing book “A healthy baby is not all that matters” article by Milli Hill We also discussed my own birth that led to PTSD, which you can read here


16 Mar 2017

Rank #8

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Chiropractic for Kids - The Healthiest Start

In this episode, I speak to a wonderful chiropractor who I had the pleasure of meeting during my training with the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) certification programme in London. For those of you who don't know, I'm a chiropractor (currently on maternity leave) and I'm working my way through this specialised paediatric chiropractic training. When I met Ron, he was so passionate about what he does, and so eloquent in his explanations, that I knew I had to get him on the show. Apologies for the sound interference 18 minutes in - and if you listen closely, you’ll hear my son, George, shouting Mummy at one point too! Oops. Ron Castellucci Ron has been practicing Chiropractic since graduating from Logan College of Chiropractic in 1988. Following his graduation from Logan, he practiced in Missouri and Massachusetts before settling in Horse Shoe, North Carolina. Dr. Castellucci is associate professor of clinical and chiropractic sciences at Sherman College of Chiropractic and was twice named faculty member of the year. He is a frequent lecturer at national chiropractic symposiums and teaches chiropractic care for children worldwide with the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association. In this episode: What does it mean to be a vitalistic chiropractor? What a vertebral subluxation is What's different about chiropractors who see adults and babies Why children should be seen by a chiropractor who has specialised training in pregnancy and paediatric chiropractic care How to find a specially trained paediatric chiropractor Where to find research about chiropractic for children and babies Further Research: ICPA Find a Chiropractor ICPA Research into Chiropractic care for children  


16 Mar 2017

Rank #9

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018 Feeling like a failure after my caesarean

Feeling like a failure after my caesarean This is an off-the-cuff episode that I recorded whilst sitting in a hotel room early in the morning. The weekend away was a planned bit of relaxation for myself and my beautiful friend MaryAnne (from the You're Doing Great Mom podcast). We had a few glasses of wine in the bar in the evening and got talking about my first birth with George, which was a planned home birth that turned into an emergency caesarean at 33 weeks. Although MaryAnne knew bits and bobs about my birth, she didn't know the full depth of it. She had no idea that I felt like a failure after my caesarean. I told my family that I felt like a failure, that my body let me down, and most of all that I didn't deserve to have children. My feelings were invalidated and dismissed, because I had a "healthy baby". That's not how it should be. Clearly this had been on my mind all night, because I woke up with the urge to record a heartfelt episode to go in depth into the birth trauma and associated feelings that led to me having PTSD. Challenging core beliefs "As a chiropractor, one of my greatest fundamental beliefs is that the body is just perfectly designed, and here I was with a body that wasn't perfectly designed… that had failed me… that had made it so that I couldn’t have a baby naturally. It really challenged every single belief that I have" I really struggled with coming to terms with what happened, and how I felt about it. Not just the birth, but the initial feelings toward my beautiful baby. As pregnant mums, I think we all sit and visualise how our lives will be, and what kind of parents we'll be too. Nobody sits and thinks to themselves, "I think I'll get separated from my baby and not even coo over a photo of him". But that's the reality for many of us. It wasn't this overwhelming surge of love and affection that I thought it'd be. I was scared. Petrified in fact. It wasn't how birth was meant to be. It wasn't how my birth was meant to be. Letting go of the stigma There's SO much stigma surrounding mental health anyway, but although people talk about PND, I'd never even thought that you could get PTSD unless you were a soldier or the victim of a horrific crime. I believe that it's so important to share stories of birth trauma, PTSD, PND and any other mental health issues surrounding birth & pregnancy. While I'm totally in support of positive birth, sometimes things aren't rosy, and we need to validate that. Feeling like a failure after my caesarean, I've since discovered, is not uncommon. I wish I'd known at the time. So, if you can think of anyone who could benefit from knowing they're not alone in how they're feeling, please share this with them. PS - Here's where MaryAnne and I chatted for You're Doing Great Mom Download Episode for Later!


1 Jun 2017

Rank #10