Barefoot Bathing and Earthing

The groundbreaking benefits behind your barefoot summer

Ah, summer—the season of barbecues, long weekends and holidays. A time of year when many of us just like to kick off our shoes and relax a little more.

This is where earthing comes in. Earthing is the practice of spending time in direct contact with the Earth, and research shows that it has a broad range of physical and mental health benefits.

If you’re looking for a simple way to improve your health and wellbeing this summer, give earthing a try!

What is earthing?
Earthing, or grounding, is the simple act of making contact with the earth. It’s as easy as taking your shoes and socks off and walking outside barefoot.

Healthy Feet are Happy Feet

Earthing has been around for centuries, but was only recently studied and given a name by Clint Ober, an electrical engineer who became invested in the topic after he was diagnosed with major health issues.

Since then, earthing has been shown to have a number of benefits not just for physical but for mental health too. It helps to relieve stress and anxiety, improve sleep, reduce inflammation and pain, and even boost energy levels.

There are a few ways to earth yourself, depending on where you are. If you’re at home, you can go outside and walk around in your back garden or nearby park. If you’re at work, you can take a quick break to go outside and perhaps lay down on the grass. And if you’re on holiday or travelling, you can find hill, dune or beach to walk barefoot on.

The science behind earthing
Earthing is the practise of being in direct contact with the earth’s surface. This can be done by walking outside barefoot, sitting or lying on the ground, or swimming in natural bodies of water.

There is a lot of science that supports earthing and its many benefits. When you’re connected to the earth, your body is able to absorb all of the beneficial electrons that are swirling around us. These electrons have been shown to promote physical and mental wellbeing. It changes the contrary positive charge we absorb from our electrical living. Swapping it for the earth’s natural charge which enriches and enliven our biology.

One study found that grounding for just fifteen minutes was able to decrease cortisol levels (the stress hormone) by 31%. It also resulted in a decrease in anxiety and negative thoughts. So if you’re looking for a way to distress this summer, earthing might be the answer for you!

What are the benefits of earthing?
There are countless benefits to earthing, both physically and mentally.

Physically, earthing helps to release tension in the body, improve sleep, reduce inflammation, and boost your immune system. It can also help to reduce pain and speed up the healing process.

Mentally, earthing can help to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. It can also help to improve focus and concentration, and increase feelings of calm and well-being.

Earthing during the summer
When it comes to summer, nothing feels better than kicking off your shoes

and feeling the grass, sand, or even tiles beneath your feet. For earthing enthusiasts, this is the best time of year because you can enjoy all the benefits of being grounded outdoors!

Go Barefoot it makes Nature Sense

There are a few things you can do to make grounding more enjoyable and relaxing. First, find a spot outside that has a nice view. This will help you relax and enjoy the experience. Secondly, make sure to wear light and comfortable clothing so you can move around easily. Lastly, take time to really focus on the sensations you feel when you’re grounding. Notice the textures, temperatures, and smells around you. This will help you connect more with your surroundings and reap the full benefits of earthing.

What to expect when you start earthing
When you start earthing, you might experience a sense of calm and grounding. This is because, when you connect with the earth, you’re absorbing negative ions, which can help to improve your mood and mental wellbeing. Some people also report improved sleep and reduced anxiety when they start earthing, as well as a general sense of good health.

From reducing anxiety to boosting energy levels, earthing or grounding can help you feel your best during the summer months. By kicking off your shoes and connecting with the earth, you can enjoy all the benefits of earthing in just a few minutes. So why not give it a try?

…and not just in the Summer!

The Fountain of Youth – secrets explained

Fountain of Youth Tibetan Rites

Ancestral or ancient movement practices such as the daily Tibetan Rites have been passed down from exactly where and from whom we don’t know.  Just as fountain of youth with nature sensethe pyramids don’t entirely make sense in our accepted time line, neither do the detail and insights of ancient medicines such as the Ayurvedic or Chinese practices.  We are still in the west uncovering the deep science behind the millennia of their wisdom.

The fountain of youth or the Tibetan Rites is another mystery, a practice so simple but so effective.  It’s all about working with energies – alas another area our modern medicine doesn’t recognise, despite science acknowledging it.

The fountain of youth – as the name suggests – comes from Tibet.  Revealed through the monk’s ancient knowledge of the energy healings of China and India combined.The Five Tibetan Rites - fountain of youth  In doing the rites it was observed that people became younger. A beauty regime better than skin deep.  The exercises activate energy vortexes, harmonising a life force which then flows, attracting more energy. They touch our energy channels ( meridians) stimulating our endocrine system and feeding our organs.   Ultimately leading to our feeling recharged, refreshed and regenerated.  Alas this is no modern style quick fix.  The rites must be practiced ever single day after a year you will start to feel and it will be observed that you are physically between 5 and 10 years  younger.  In your way, stamina and in other’s observations.   But suiting the modern demand for speed, they take only about 10 to 15 minutes out of your day.

Improvements seen : Vitality comes back into your life.  Sleeping becomes deeper. Joints and spine feel more supple.  Eyes, senses, organs work better and energy replaces fatigue.

So to the how:  Start with three of each and build up to 21 over 4 or 5 months.  You may be able for more, but this is about organ energy, not physical ability.  All breathing during the rites must be in through your nose.  You start with the spin, clockwise – with the planet -activating your energy field for the day.  While you do the exercise, try to visualise your energy travelling through your spine.  The final rite combines both  energy directions in the one exercise.

You can combine these moves with your other exercise, more formal western or yoga, tai chi or chi kung – but they must be done daily.   Oxigenating your day, your energy.  Ideally you would also in time bring in meditation and nasal breathing.  But one thing at a time.  Let’s get these 5 movements first into your day. Visualising and energising.

You can do it – put the life into your years, not just the years into your life.the fountain of youth - secrets

The original Natural EMDR

nature Therapy for healing trauma

EMDR’s roots are originally based in Nature. First what is EMDR?  It stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing and by reputation known as a proven, effective therapy for trauma. EMDR naturally with Nature SenseOriginating in the late 80’s by Francine Shapiro PhD, who observed the simple fact that she always felt better after a walk .. but.. as a scientist she took it to another level, dissecting the observation to find out exactly why!

On examination she realised that key to that, feeling-better-feeling lay in the eyes, in particular their movements. It was observed when the eye movement was reenacted clinically that there was a decrease in the experience of negative emotions. To be exact, there was a reduction in the anxiety or feeling felt around a situation. Not eliminating but desensitising the feeling – especially in relation to trauma – helping distance, fade and in time have less effect on the recipient’s life.  When she experimented specific movements in the eyes Dr Shapiro found that their movements alone did not fully reduce the trauma or upset. With trial and ultimately success she added a cognitive component, resulting in the well regarded standard we now know as  Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing. EMDR is about stopping the power Nature sense training EMDR Naturally of the trigger with the consequent effect that occurs for many, getting lost in the trauma or upset.  It’s about being able to move on.

As a Nature Therapist – indeed as anyone who goes for a walk in nature, be it a park or somewhere more rural, the simple feel good factor is something we know instinctively.   But the modern world has stresses and strains and the people therein have histories that need a bit more than a simple walk to clear your head.

Going for a walk of course helps not just our health but also our mental wellbeing, however working with anxiety and specific traumas needs a little deeper work just as it does in a clinical setting.  The main component with Natural EMDR is that you are layering all that there is outside into a session. This increases the effectiveness of Walk and Talk therapy as well as further empowering the client to be able to use their own walks  in nature to support the reduction in the presenting trauma and or anxiety.

trauma healing naturally

The Science
We know from understanding ancestral health that the body has a natural inclination to heal itself, like a wound forming a scab.  Nature Sense Therapists have an understanding how our brain works and know that traumatic memories can get stuck in the limbic system – our reptilian brain. Not so much a healing centre but a reactive one, hence keeping your memory in a distressed state. When our sensory memory is engaged in a bilateral stimulation (as with Natural EMDR) our memory moves from flight or fight arousal  to another part of the brain that’s able to deal with it.  The emotional distress is moved to a place where control and ease in managing the emotion passes without triggering the past anxiety.

How it works with Nature Sense  
We take the modern understanding and proven effectiveness of  bilateral stimulation -outside, we take it home.  Through walking, climbing, running – any movement, watching the birds, the clouds even. We have the modern understanding about eye movement and the how this actually works on issues aligned with the millennia of knowledge before the analysis proved it. Healing Trauma gently with Nature Sense Natural EMDR is also combined with further modern clinical acknowledgments of pre modern era wisdom such as forest bathing, breathing, image work.  Integrating actual body movement along with parasympathetic breathing you have an effective foundation for desensitising and helping people to move on effectively, but as nature intended.

With Nature Sense we go back to the origin of EMDR, indeed long before.  Stepping back into Nature to help you through your anxiety, through it’s origin  – through movement outside.  It’s gentler, it’s more congruent – it’s change is profound.

To understand more or book an appointment contact – Fiona, Nature sense Director here.

To train as a Natural EMDR therapist you must be a qualified therapist and have done the foundational Nature Sense training here.

Turmeric – Nature’s anti Inflammatory

turmeric curcumin nature sense

Nature Sense is not just about being out in nature it’s also about an ancestral rediscovery of it’s gold  ..

How better than to take a close up look at Mother Nature’s actual gold – Turmeric – along with it’s radiant component – Curcumin

You may have first come across turmeric as the orangey yellowy spice adding a zing to your curry.  It would be doing it an injustice to believe that it begins and ends there. These days Turmeric is everywhere from posh lattes to luxury chocolate and staining your tongue if it’s been sprinkled  into a health shot, salad or smoothies.

real gold turmeric
It’s been around forever – they say the gold that was brought by the three wise men was actually turmeric, which would make sense as frankincense and myrrh were also both revered medicines in times past.  So what’s at the root of this root?  Why so popular in times present?

It’s been touted as a miracle remedy for everything from inflammation to cancer due to its ability to help boost your cells’ resistance to damage and infection.   The most studied part of turmeric is curcumin which is not to say the rest of this spice is not important, it’s just that it accounts for most of it, so has received a lot of attention.   And with reason.

First however is a concept called bioavailability. This means how easily your body can make use of something.  Curcumin is not so much bioavailable on it’s own and is only fat soluble  – but if you pair it with a friend that is – pepper – it is in a class of it’s own!  The rest of the turmeric is more bioavailable and is water curcumin turmeric aavasoluble  .. so your best way of availing of this ancient healer is take – both.  For instance, I take curcumin in the morning with a smoothie (with Omega or MCT oil )  but during the day I  break open a couple of turmeric capsules into what I’m cooking.  If I’m feeling achey – as curcumin is great for inflammation – I’ll have one with anything rich in oils at the same time –  increasing that bioavailability.

You can’t have too much of this stuff as it’s like some vitamins – it doesn’t hang around for a long time in your system.  Basically, the more the merrier.  After all it’s been around with proven healthy outcomes in Ayurvedic medicine for over 4,000 years.  Now that’s a long time in the bigger system of things!

The internet is full of information on both Curcumin and Turmeric, so no point in duplicating it.  The point of this article is to get you looking into ancient practices that have worked, to empower yourself and come back with questions ( if you can’t find answers that work for you).  Most of all it’s to open your eyes and mind into living well, knowing that living in harmony with nature and trusting in it’s bounty – gets us closer to our optimal living template and further helping us down regulate the stress and inflammation of modern living.

curcumin turmeric good for youSo I’ll sign off with a few things that Turmeric (and curcumin with pepper) is good for. Essentially it is known for its anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor and antioxidant effects and a strong standby for skin conditions, digestive issues, period pains as well as many other aches and pains including arthritis. More recently it’s been found that contribute to protecting your brain as you age and has shown promise in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

Here are some of the areas in which both turmeric and curcumin have shown clear benefits, backed by science:   Osteoarthritis: Obesity: Heart disease: Diabetes:  Liver:  Cancer: Antifungal: Antibacterial:

golden milk anti inflammatory Using your favourite search engine – search Turmeric and your issue and presto you’ll have started on your journey.  Also look at the many amazing recipes that uses Turmeric including Golden Milk an age old yogic and Ayurvedic application.

UPDATE: I’ve been asked quite a number of times in both private consults and our Nature Sense course “what my favourite Curcumin supplement is?”  – it’s from the nordic company AAVALabs  and if you use BMCC at check out you’ll get a discount.




Stone age men didn’t take Supplements

naturesense supplementation

The wisdom of our ancestors certainly is an important measure to optimising our biology but there’s nothing wrong with taking a closer look at how they lived to see what was going on and if it could work for us.  To harness their natural wisdom, to supplement a stronger shield against today’s tough living.

However the assumption that previous generations didn’t take supplements is actually not true. Ancient supplements include root, stem, and leaf teas targeted for specific symptoms, medicinal powders ground by mortar and pestles, and highly concentrated oil extracts. Just because these dietary extras don’t look like the capsules and oversized tubs of protein powders, doesn’t mean that they weren’t popping a bit extra of what made them feel good!

natural supplementation Further our ancestors didn’t have the antibacterial living that we experience.  They consumed dirt, which we now know contains a wide range of beneficial minerals and probiotics along with good bacteria and viruses. So we’ve to make that up and top it up!  Compounding our depletion are the methods that we use to cook, and consume food in the industrial world. These are also pretty different from those of our ancestors which has also contributed to the deficiency in our overall nutrient availability and absorption.

Take our food, generally these days we eat only animal muscle and discard the collagen-rich connective tissues. Previous generations – as recent as our grandparents – simmered animal carcasses for hours, for bone broth, liberating collagen, gelatine, and fat-soluble vitamins from connective tissues. In a way, the soups our ancestors consumed are equivalent to the  joint supplements that proudly line the wellness and sports shelves of our health food shops.

To learn more about ancestral nutrition maybe ask your parents what foods their parents or grandparents prepared.  Reflect a while about how indigenous tribes can carry water on their head for miles – where some of us in our twenties are too busy balancing the latest charcoal latte complete with a plastic lid – to consider where these notions or needs – came from.

So yes our Stone Age relatives did supplement and Yes we can learn from them! In this modern world the key is to eat simple, eat variety and dump the junk. And supplement? Why not!  Perhaps in addition reflect on  your curcumin or charcoal latties and ask ‘would my ancient biology like this’ and if so what’s the nutritious story behind it?  Because there is one.  It makes Nature Sense!

What is Health Optimisation in the 2020’s?

lets get healthy

A Historical Look at Health :  What can we learn from Paleo Times?

People are always surprised to hear that we as a species are not at our peak!  We have this sense that we’re advancing, that we improve with every year.  But is this really the case?

From digs to studies it’s been shown that paleolithic humans were taller, more keenly in touch with their senses and showed no sign of disease such as we have today.  Their main threat outside of childbirth was from other animals – and each other!  But certainly not their own biology as is the case today.  Death then was from outside – now death is from inside – predominately the exponentially rising chronic illnesses of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, brain disorders, inflammations all generating from within. Even the current much reported ‘pandemic’ – the overwhelming majority of deaths are occurring due to a reduced internal immunity and secondarily illness.

So is this a key to our health?  Our species, classified  as Homo Sapiens (meaning wise humans) are the most recent in a line of hominids who’s history stretches back into what’s referred to as the Paleolithic or the prehistoric period which dates around  2.5 million years to about 10,000 years ago.

health optimisation 2020

Post primate evolution we were preceded and at times shared the planet with a number of now-extinct hominin relatives, including Homo Erectus, Neanderthals and Denisovans. Many of whom – as species lived for hundreds of thousands of years – very much longer than we sapiens have yet to achieve. We are the last surviving human species.

Putting this into context – it may feel like we’ve been around creating huge volumes of historical achievement forever, but everything we know has just covered 10,000 years!  As if pre-history means no-history, implying there’s nothing for us to learn. Is this right?

It was around 10,000 years ago that our species changed from being hunter gatherers. At that time we lived with the light and slept to the dying embers of fire.

getting healthy in the modern world nature sense

Our diet was obtained by fishing, hunting birds and wild animals as well as collecting berries, fruit and nuts. We were surrounded by a world of plenty living for the  most part, in harmony with our surrounds, with Nature.  We were at the peak of our Nature Sense.

This most harmonious of times for our species  also marks a point in history when we biologically started to disconnect – to devolve.  It was when we started to get sick:  Our teeth rotting, our skeleton shrinking and chronic disease showing up in our skeletal remains, never seen in previous finds. Despite the great PR that farming receives in our evolution, this marks a decline in not just our biology, but also life for many other animals. We started to domesticate (not just them but also women where their role became dependant and owned as much as the animals!)   This sedentary shift ironically brought with it a much harsher life, with less variety in food and more vulnerable to weather as well as a much challenging life of planting, harvesting and building. farming ills gluten free nature senseBringing us to now where we value any invention that stops us moving and increases our sitting!  We are en rout – unless we become aware of our hubris – to be the shortest living of the hominoid species.  So much for the ‘wise’ human!

Of course there is no denying the incredible advances in surgery and some medical discoveries but only time will tell if the big pharmacological advances are as beneficial as we believe. After all the medical establishment is the third biggest killer in America with the rest of the west not far behind.   We hail antibiotics as remarkable – without question, in many applications they are – but they may ultimately be useless as we are increasingly suffering auto immune diseases. Much of this rising tide of illness is due to our lack of understanding of the importance of viruses and bacteria and the stark fact that we are actually made up of over 50 percent virus and bacteria. To kill them, kills us, kills our innate immunity.

Our overuse and reliance on many of our man made chemicals, the whole way up the food chain from farming to ‘health’ and with it an increasing philosophy of a one shot cure for everything is leading to a Homo Helpless.   This idea that the GP’s bible of medicine is somehow more advanced than finding a cause, than living optimally – ignoring our innate natural health – is making this generation the first to die younger and sicker than their parents at any time in history! And now stepping into 2021 we’re set to be even sicker from our increased inside living and screen addictions.

history of virusWe do not need to be reminded with the world health crisis how elements such as virus and bacteria are so much stronger than we are.  Perhaps trying to eliminate the building blocks of all life will seem in time, as backward as we perceive humans who knew nothing of taming fire.

health optimisation bmcc nature senseSo to close, what’s the solution as obviously our earth is no longer the earth of 10,000 years ago?  Awarness and acknowledging there is a challenge is the first step. That we have become misaligned with what our biology needs to thrive a real need to be recognised.  Allowing ourselves to consider ‘How do we live well when our lifestyle is predominately sedentary, that our life having jumped from being 90%outdoors to now more than 90% indoors!’ The first is to admit we have a challenge.

But Human’s have survived – and we do rise and thrive in challenge.  Let’s acknowledge and then Act.

Realising that we are part of nature, that being apart does not serve us.   That learning to live in harmony not just with nature, but our tech.  Health optimisation recognises that we need to be in sync; encouraging earthing, healthy living, eating with the seasons, dumping the junk. It’s also about recognising that our good food has depleted nutrients so sometimes supplimentation is needed.  That filtering water to eliminate fluroide and chlorine to nurture our guts is important.  That many medicines are not the best solution and a recognition that so called alternative medicines are a good first call in many cases.  That the simple things are actually the easy way to start.  Walking in a park, Forest Bathing, talking with friends, learning to cook so that you can buy organic and make it last.  Paleo or Primal eating. Growing veg, not using pesticides in your garden, turning your phone off at night, reading books, chucking hours of social, upping your vitamin intake, stop wearing SPF all the time, bringing in mindfulness, turning off mainstream news, learning how to breath deeply… there is so much that this is just the start of even more information that you can find here.

Choose just one, heal yourself – It’s just Nature Sense.

health optimisation nature sense

Nature Sense is about connecting with a reality that makes you feel alive.