If, like many of us in this high pollen season, you are suffering with hayfever – or indeed any other sensitivity reaction regularly, you might want to pop over and see the post I have just written on the TGF blog about antihistamines.

Obviously, I am pointing TrulyGlutenFree readers to grain free versions of the antihistamines where you lucky people can have any, BUT it might shed some useful light on natural alternatives.

Have a look anyway if you think it might help:

Gluten Free AntiHistamines

See also where I have given recommendations previously for you:

Non-Drug Hayfever Solutions

Hayfever Tips

Allergy/Hayfever Prescription




Homeopathy Worked For Me

I received a plea this morning to get behind a campaign to stop new laws limiting our access to homeopathic medicines. It’s important we don’t allow the powers that be to limit our ability to take care of ourselves, our way.

It struck me that this is in stark contrast to the way the Swiss are now treating homeopathy. A recent Swiss government report, conducted in the same way as the UK one a while ago, I believe, came to a staggeringly different conclusion:

not only does it work, but that it is far more cost-effective than conventional medicine. 

They conducted the review because they were adding alternative therapies to their ‘NHS’ budget, each therapy subject to a thorough investigation. So, whilst here in the UK our access is being limited, the Swiss government has accepted there is enough evidence it works, that enough people want it, and they shouldn’t have to pay for it. What a flippin’ difference. Perhaps we should all move to Switzerland!

Source WDDTY enews May 12

Here’s the campaign detail, all you need to do it like a Facebook page so nothing onerous, but will give a powerful message:

Your access to homeopathic medicines is under threat


The Medicines Act is being simplified, which is a good thing because much duplication is being removed. However, as a result there are some key elements which could adversely affect your access to homeopathic medicines if the proposals go into force.

What will happen to my access to homeopathic medicines?

If the current proposals by the MHRA are endorsed by government the following would occur:

  • You would no longer be able to get homeopathic medicines by phone or online To get any unlicensed homeopathic medicine a face-to-face consultation would be required at a registered pharmacy. Unlicensed medicines number in the thousands and make up the majority of homeopathic prescriptions, while there are only 50 licenced homeopathic medicines. This will also mean you cannot legally buy unlicensed homeopathic medicines online or over the phone as you currently do.
  • Homeopaths would not be able to dispense or prescribe medicines to you Homeopathic practitioners would not be able to dispense unlicensed homeopathic medicines to their patients. This arises because homeopaths are not recognised by this law as being supplementary prescribers and it will be illegal for homeopathic pharmacies to supply them with the essential (unlicensed) medicines required for their patients.
  • You would have to get your homeopathic medicines personally at a handful of licenced homeopathic pharmacies in Britain Hundreds of thousands of people who currently have prescriptions filled for unlicensed homeopathic medicines will be unable to obtain their urgent medicines. The estimated 6 million users of homeopathy in Britain cannot be expected to be supplied medicines face-to-face by less than five licenced premises. 

The Act is due to be discussed late May/early June, so please help.

If homeopathy has worked for you and/or you want to stop bureaucrats from allowing you access to natural remedies, please like this Homeopathy Worked For Me page on Facebook:


and sign this petition:


Thanks. I note the campaign does involve two homeopathy suppliers who would, of course, stand to benefit, but I think the principle of limiting our choice to alternative medicine is good enough to support, whoever it comes from.

Top Ten Tips For Insomnia

Someone asked me about this today so I thought I would share some of my top tips for helping you sleep.

What is Insomnia?

Not being able to sleep at night drives you mad, makes you very tired, snappy and fed up. Sleep is crucial to us as it is the time when the body repairs and gathers energy.

Insomnia can be caused by several things. There are two main types: the type when you can’t get off and the type when you get off but wake early or several times during the night.

Top Tips For Sleep

1. First, do the obvious, like stop drinking coffee, eating sugary or white foods after about 3pm.

2. It is important to eat healthily, avoiding stimulant foods and drinks such as tea, coffee, sugar, fizzy drinks, white bread etc and eat lots of wholegrains, oily fish and vegetables.

3. Build yourself a ritual that relaxes you before bed; some people have a relaxing bath, a chamomile tea and read a bit of a soothing book.

4. Watching a stimulating drama on TV or reading a horror novel before bed won’t help!

5. If you are waking most nights between 3am and 5am, it is normally a blood sugar problem. Eat something as you go to bed, preferably NOT something white, sweet or stimulating: a protein and carb snack like a banana and oatcake or a few nuts and a banana would work well.

6. Notice I kept mentioning bananas there? They are full of tryptophan so are very calming and are therefore a good choice.

7. If the problem is not getting off, a hypnotherapy tape can often help, supplemented with a couple of sessions of hypnotherapy to retrain your mind to shut up!

8. If the problem is tension or anxiety, I always recommend an excellent homeopathic remedy called Valerianheel which acts like a mallet in a bottle for most people.

9. If pain or problems such as depression, hot flushes or restless legs are stopping you sleeping, get some advice. Contact your health professional, GP or email me and I will point you in the right direction.

10. Often, the problem is related to your magnesium and calcium balance and taking extra magnesium along with 5HTP and B6 can help.

Chill Food 60'sA useful product to look at here is Biocare’s Chill Food. Add extra B6 as a B Complex or you may already be taking some within your main multivitamin product. Note that for some people, the B6 P5P form is better metabolised. Boost magnesium levels too with something like Nutrigold Magnesium Citrate. Around 200-300mg with your evening dinner may help aid sleep.

The Chill Food also contains L Theanine, an amino acid  which has been shown to improve sleep in studies.

Bonus Tip 1:

Check if any medication you are taking may be causing the problem – look at the side effects list and talk to your GP.

Bonus Tip 2:

Hate to tell you but alcohol won’t help! It does make you sleepy but it is actually a stimulant so you will probably get off but have poor quality sleep or keep waking. Don’t shoot the messenger.

Hope those tips help. Actually 12 as I got carried away! For products, go to Natural Dispensary as usual. Have a good night!

Fatty Acids Reduce PMS

The evening primrose flower (O. biennis) produ...
Image via Wikipedia

Researchers in Brazil have confirmed that taking 1-2g of essential fatty acids, especially GLA from borage/evening primrose oil, over 3 months can significantly help PMS.

The researchers used a specific mix: each 1-gram capsule contained a mean of 210 mg of gamma linolenic acid (GLA), 175 mg of oleic acid, 345 mg of linoleic acid (LA), 250 mg of other polyunsaturated acids and 20 mg of vitamin E.

That’s basically a lot of Omega 6 fatty acid. This is no surprise as we have known for ages that GLA specifically can help hormones problems linked to PMS.

My view, though, is that taking such a high dose of omega 6 may lead to an imbalance of fatty acids generally – EPA and DHA from fish and linseed oil, for example, are just as important and the fatty acids should really be balanced for long term health. In fact, most experts think we are too high in omega 6 generally and not high enough in omega 3s, but that’s no comfort if you’re in the throws of a PMS fit!

That said, options could be to take the right types of fatty acids in higher doses or take a general balanced product and add extra GLA on top for a period of time.

I normally recommend a balanced oil product like Nutrigold’s Omega Smart. It is not particularly high dose but it contains lipase, the fat-digesting enzyme, to help you make the most of the product. It is thought by some that a lot of people are merrily taking fatty acids like fish oils and not actually being able to use them in the body properly because of a lack of the right enzymes. It’s good to make sure.

Other balanced oil products include those from Higher Nature, Biocare and most suppliers.

So, it might be that you take the Omega Smart or a similar product as a general wellbeing formula and add extra GLA as needed. The best forms of GLA are borage and evening primrose oil. You can get some good GLA products from Biocare including Mega GLA Complex amongst others and other suppliers do them too. 

Read the full study here. And you can read a really useful technical document about fatty acids and lipase written by Nutrigold here. Yes, they are a supplier, but they do know what they are taking about and I trust them to tell the truth about supplements.

Here’s hoping your PMS days are ended!

Homeopathy To Continue on NHS

Despite the onslaught against homeopathy recently, I am pleased to report that the government has recently ignored calls to ban this valuable natural therapy.

Responding to a Science Committee report and to the campaign, Andrew Lansley, the Health Secretary, said that it was up to local NHS officials to decide whether or not they wished to continue to offer homeopathy and other complementary medicine approaches in their area and not for Westminster to tell them the best way to treat their patients. He said that patient choice and the relationship between clinician and patient were important factors in getting people well.

By doing this, cynically-speaking, he has signalled probably that the Govt wants to duck the issue and not get involved in banning something so popular which would not make them look good, but also that patient choice is important.

Speaking to Natural Products News,  Dr Sara Eames, president of the Faculty of Homeopathy was quoted: “As a doctor who practices homeopathy on the NHS, I know homeopathy is an important part of our health service helping tens of thousands of patients annually, a majority of whom have not been helped sufficiently with conventional treatments. I am pleased to see the government, contrary to the recommendations of the Science and Technology’s report, agrees that homeopathy has a place in the NHS  and offers choice to both patients and local purchasers of healthcare.”


The main claim against homoepathy is that, apart from the reams and reams of anecdotal evidence and trials on animals where placebo cannot have an effect, some non-believers claim it is unproven. But, given the debacle raging about the anti-depressant trials that have come to light (see my last post) which were based on the supposed gold-standard RCT type tests, that’s a bit rich!

Weleda Gardening First Aid Kit

After spending most of the weekend planning and preparing my veg garden, this gardening kit I saw today sounded bliss…

Arnica Massage Balm to relieve aching back and muscles

Comboduron Spray for itching, stinging bites

Calendolon Ointment to heal scratches, cuts and grazes

Skin Food as a fantastic hand cream

Foot Balm for cool, pepperminty-refreshed feet

Chestnut Bath Soak to ease tired limbs

Ahh. Don’t know about you, but just reading all that makes me feel better! All pretty cheap, organic and fantastically-effective. Get them from Natural Dispensary as usual on 01453 757792.www.naturaldispensary.co.uk.