Kate McCandless is a fellow Naturopath & Nutritionist, who I am grateful to have met last year. After chatting briefly, it was clear this girl knew her stuff! Kate surrounds herself with intelligent holistic practitioners, attends training among Integrative GP’s and her knowledge shines through her work in Melbourne based clinic, Merge Health.
Kate has been in the healthcare industry for 10 years and over this time, trained as a G.A.P.S, MINDD, ACNEM & NLP practitioner. Specialising in chronic infection, mental health, adrenal fatigue digestive and skin conditions, Kate is one of the most switched on and successful Naturopaths I know.
You’re in for a treat today! Meet Kate…
Have you always been happy and healthy? Share your journey which has landed you in the health industry.
My passion has stemmed from many years of person ‘unknown’ illnesses and chronic fatigue. From which I was finally diagnosed with multiple conditions, including coeliac disease, endometriosis, psoriatic arthritis, fructose mal-absorption, lactose intolerance and pyrrole disorder.
I was a carb addict as very clearly demonstrated by my hypoglycemic or oestrogen dominated moods! I also watched my grandmother die a horrible death from septicaemiaa, which, in hindsight, we think was the result of sever complications of undiagnosed coeliac disease.
I’m definatley a task orientated person, and when determined, become extremely focused. After years of feeling exhausted, in constant pain, living on pharmaceutical pain relief to get through my day, decided to discover my roots in Nutrition and Naturopathy.
As a result, I’m committed to helping people discover a simple diet, with the support of herbs and nutrients, if neccessary, that nourishes and supports healing to regain the energy and passion for life they are missing.
Tell us about how you contribute to the health and happiness of others.
In addition to offering treatment for general health issues, I offer an integrative medicine service in order to assist patients reduce the side effects of conventional medicines and, alongside their GP, also help patients safely withdraw from medications that are no longer required.
My greatest passion is to see my patients be reignited with passion for life. I think I do this by communicating commitment to see them succeed in their health goals. I want nothing more than for people to be empowered with tools that equip them to self-treat and work myself out of a job!
This means I teach principles of eating, not just what to eat. I teach my patients how to read their blood tests, to watch and monitor themselves so they can be responsible, and in charge of their health, I teach people to value themselves..to fit the oxygen mask to themselves before they fit the children, or others.
I’m a huge advocate for walking…a lot. Get a pedometer and get your 10,000 steps a day. Start with a walk around the block. I love walking, especially bush walking. That also means I love looking after what we have, so I have a compost which feeds my garden- especially herbs, veges and fruit trees,
All of this is about a simple reconnection to the earth. Getting grounded, being free of wifi, emf’s and the chemical storm in our homes, helps to remember our health priorities.
What do you believe is the most important to nourish the body for optimal health and happiness?
A good attitude. I can give all the health principles, tools, supplements and diets in the world, but in the end, if you dont actually want to change, you never will.
What food, drinks and other important regimens make up your day?
I start my day with a cup of bone broth, usually made from last nights roast. This is essential for ongoing gut repair, providing amino acids, fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K and electrolytes to stay fueled for hours. I’ll go for a 30-90 minute walk, an hour boot camp or a 2 hour kayak. I pray, listen to music or the wind. I journal and think about my life goals and how grateful I am for the opportunity to fulfil them.
If I don’t eat left over dinner (my favourite), I’ll have a small bowl of activated nuts and seeds with a few berries or seasonal fruit, freshly grated spices, like nutmeg, chai, or cacao, and coconut milk. I’ll add coconut yogurt, or some MCT oil for extra fat. I drink herbal tea. I might have a bulletproof coffee or green tea, depending on whether I’ve eaten breakfast or not.
I don’t always have lunch. I eat so much fat, that I usually go through until dinner without feeling even slightly hungry. However, I will drink more herbal tea.
Dinner is usually seasonal salad or veges roasted, fried or steamed…some organic or grass fed meat, fish or poultry. Pretty simple really.
I’m a sweet tooth, so I’ll usually have a couple of pieces of dark chocolate with herbal tea at night.
Do you routinely supplement your diet? If so, what?
Although it’s a nice thought to think that we can do without supplements, sadly, I’m not sure that that is possible anymore. Nothing will ever replace a whole foods diet, but even then, it’s difficult to have no stress in your life, no toxins, avoid excessive sitting, eat so fresh that somehow you get everything you need all the time.
I change my supplements a lot, depending on the season, my health needs, current stressors, and the variety of my diet.
Definitely a fan of extra fats and oils, like MCT oil, fish and cod liver oil. I use a lot of zinc, B complex and a constant array of herbal tinctures. I’m not loyal to any one thing though, Ill try anything that is new into our practice, before my patients get it…personal policy of mine.
What was your latest inspiring health read?
THE BIOINITIATIVE REPORT, 2012.
This is a rationale for biologically based public exposure standards for electromagnetic fields (ELF and RF).
I’m currently working through the diploma of building biology to extend knowledge of environmental health issues and better serve my patients in clinic, whom so often have no idea that their environment is the greatest source of illness.
Share with us a favourite health and happiness tip…
Eat more fat. I mean the good stuff- coconut oil, avocado, (organic) chicken skin, nuts, eggs and butter. We have been so low fat obsessed, we’ve forgotten the importance of eating a wholefoods diet and have resorted to living on carb based meals that send us on the hypoglycemia roller coaster.
Eat way more fat than you think you should have, or have even dreamed of having. I usually tell my patients to “look at your plate before every meal and ask yourself, ‘where’s the fat?’…and whatever the answer, add more!”
The happiness part comes when you realise that actually you do have willpower to change. So many people think they have failed because they are driven towards the foods they know are hindering their health goal. Eating more fat, fires up the willpower that you knew you had somewhere. My patients are amazed at the control they have when they eat more fat.
Thanks Kate 🙂
You can find out more about Kate’s Naturopath (and Integrative GP) clinic, Merge Health on facebook and their website.
Offering you inspiration and motivation for your Monday.
Love, health & happiness,