Posted in Health and Well Being

Looking for a new approach to weight management?

Posted by Dr Michelle Woolhouse on 30 June 2018
Looking for a new approach to weight management?

Need a kick start for your metabolism?

Over 2/3 of Australians are either obese or overweight, this is an increase of over 500 fold in the last 50 years. Our changing lifestyle, our changing food habits and our changing gut biome all play a role in this weight gain epidemic.

So is there anything you can do?

Managing a healthy weight can be a challenge for many people, most of those have tried many fad diets, some have even gone as far as using medications and surgery to assist their bodies in holding the ideal body weight.

But as much as there is no magic pill, there are some safe, healthy ways to adapt and change your lifestyle and habits to support a healthy weight.

Diet aside, are some people more prone to weight gain than others?

Well new research does suggest some people with different gut biomes are more likely to absorb more sugar and fat from the same foods, ie if 2 people eat a roast spud, one will absorb more starch than the other, therefore gaining more energy density from the food they eat.

Another reason why people put on weight more easily, is due to increase insulin resistance. When we become more resistant to the insulin in our bodies, our glucose levels gets more dysregulated. This means the body is confused about how to use the glucose from the foods we have eaten. This leads to increase stress on the body and makes the body turn the sugar to fat more easily.

The latest research

There are several aspects of diet research which are showing a lot of promise. The low carb diet is a very good way to go, as it is associated with a better long term weight loss after 6 months than a low fat diet. Fasting has been an ancient technique used across the world for a whole variety of health reasons, and some recent research has suggested that it may improve longevity, decrease insulin levels and reduce cancer inflammatory markers. A high plant based diet, is recommended for gut biome health as it is super high in nutrition and in fibre.

The other interesting aspect of diet and long term health is the research around mindful eating. What this means mean is increasing our internal ability to become more mindful helps us with better food choices, better satiety and better self esteem. It can also help us make better lifestyle choices like exercise, hobbies and seeking healthy relationships.

One of the most researched diets on the planet is the Mediterranean diet, which is a varied diet rich in plant based foods, fibre, legumes which is eaten mindfully and full of super foods. It is associated with less depression, better cardiovascular health, better cognition and better longevity.

Which one if right for me?

The general consensus for long term sustainable weight management is to find a diet and lifestyle plan that suits you emotionally, mentally, socially and culturally. We often hold so much emotion to our food choices, so a good discussion with a educated GP can be a vital stepping point to start setting some goals and kick starting your new health journey.

So if you are interested in getting a more whole person approach to weight loss, call Whole Medicine for further information on 03 5986 4229.

Posted in: Women's Health Men's Health Health and Well Being Family GP  

New guidelines for prostate cancer screening

Posted by Dr Michelle Woolhouse on 30 June 2018
New guidelines for prostate cancer screening

Thanks to the rising media attention, most men are aware prostate cancer is on the rise. But yet most guys do not know what they need to do to screen for the disease and make sure they don't have it.

New guidelines have been put out to help guide men in the screening process.

A screening program is not a perfect test. It is designed to pick up the majority of abnormalities without being too invasive or causing any risk of harm. This is why we screen often to increase the chances of picking up the disease in it's early stages. The up side of this is that a screening program is a very safe thing to undertake, the down side is that a small percentage of cases are missed.

In prostate cancer screening, there is another issue,  that we might pick up diseases that would not have evolved into a significant disease, putting people at risk of having to undergo treatment for a disease that was never going to amount to much.

So should men get tested?

So for those that wish to be screened, and are willing to take the risk of being over diagnosed should take the test.

What age should you start the screening program?

It is recommended for those men that don't have a family history of prostate cancer, the screening starts at aged 50.  For those that do have a family history screening starts earlier. Please talk to your doctor about what age is appropariate for you?

What does the screening test involve?

Well this is the most important factor, most men know that the old way to screen for prostate cancer is a digital examination of the back passage but the good news is this has been changed.  That's right, there is no need to do a rectal examination to men that don't have symptoms of prostate disease. All that needs to be done for those men who wish to be check out is a simple blood test.

So come in and make an appointment to see the doctor to discuss this very important screening opportunity.  Contact Whole Medicine on 03 5986 4229.

Be well

Posted in: Preventative Medicine Men's Health Chronic Illness Health and Well Being Family GP  

Bulk Billing kids under 12

Posted by Dr Michelle Woolhouse on 30 June 2018
Bulk Billing kids under 12

It is pretty common to get a phone call from the school every few weeks, telling you that your little man or little lady has turned up again, saying something is hurting and as parents we often know when things are minor and to push on, but there are times when all we need is a little reassurance.  We need to make sure the cough is not a pneumonia, the ear drum isn't about to burst or the tonsils are just red and not full of a bacterial infection.

At Whole Medicine we know this happens all the time and in the past we didn't have the availability to offer this service to you as our community, but now we do. We want to be there to support you and your family through these mini challenges, because how we teach kids about health when they are sick has been shown to offer long term benefits to health habits in the future. Reiterating good health habits makes all the difference when kids are young and reinforces key message regarding health behaviour and health management.

So we as a team have decided to offer our families Bulk Billing for kids under 12 years of age, for all those acute 'on the day' appointments.  We all know, kids get sick often, kids fall over all the time, kids hurt themselves in all sorts of ways. As their little immune systems get stronger, as their coordination and skills start to get better, we will be there for all those time when they bump heads, roll their ankle or cough all the way through the night.

See website www.wholemedicine.com.au for details.

Book an online appointment

Posted in: Children's Health Health and Well Being Family GP  

Out with the old pap, in with the new

Posted by Dr Michelle Woolhouse on 30 June 2018
Out with the old pap, in with the new

Well it has been a long time coming and the new "pap smear" test has arrived. It won't be called a pap smear now, as the technology has changed, so it is now officially called  a "cervical screening test", but that doesn't roll off the tongue, like a pap test does, so colloquially the term pap test will stick around for now.

So what does this mean for women....

Over the last few decades medical science has found that most women who go onto develop cervical cell changes have an associated human papiloma virus (HPV for short) infection. This infection often doesn't have symptoms and can pass between partner without anyone being aware.

There are over 100 different subtypes of HPV but we have identified that only a few will give you a higher risk of developing abnormal cells. The abnormal cells become the risk factor for cervical cancer, a cancer that we want to avoid.

The new test aims to pick up about 30% more cancer risk than the previous screening test. So this is very good news.

The pap smear was a test that took a small scrapping of cells from the cervix, these cells were taken to the lab to be analysed, if there were abnormal cells, we used to either watch carefully, or do a procedure to remove those cells before they become dangerous.

The screening test now looks for the different subtypes of the HPV virus. If the woman doesn't have the dangerous, high risk HPV subtypes she is very unlikely to go on and have abnormal cells. In addition over the last decade we have introduced the cervical cancer immunisation schedule, which is further lowering the risk for HPV infection in women overall.

Because the association between cervical cancer and HPV is so strong, if you don't have the dangerous types of HPV, you don't need as regular follow up. If you do, we follow you up more closely, offer further testing and can define the risk a lot more clearly.

The good news about all of this for our women is that the "pap test" is officially been taken over by the cervical screening test and that this test requires screening every 5 years, instead of every 2 years in the past. Testing commences at age 25 years and goes through to 74 years.

More information can be found here: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/cervical-screening-tests

Contact Whole Medicine today to make an appointment 03 5986 4229.

Posted in: Women's Health Preventative Medicine Health and Well Being Family GP  

Time flies after baby arrives

Posted by Dr Michelle Woolhouse on 6 June 2018
Time flies after baby arrives

This article will appear in the Mornington Peninsula Magazine June 2018 Addition.

Whole Medicine Article in Mornington Peninsula Magazine

Time moves quickly after the arrival of your cherished baby, and as a new mum there's much to learn. What nappies to use? What signs to look for regarding over-tiredness? How to navigate the world of breastfeeding? It can be a confronting and challenging time albeit an exciting one.

The good news is there are lots of positive things you can do to optimise your baby's health and transition from a child-free adult to a healthy and capable Mum. That's where Whole Medicine can help.

Modern research shows that by looking after the gut biome of small babies and toddlers, you can help children optimise their immunity, support allergy tendencies, lower lifetime risk of some chronic diseases and even aid intelligence. A Whole Medicine six-week baby check includes heart, vision, tummy and hip health assessments, plus offers immunisation schedule navigation, optimising feeding support and arrangement of any necessary specialist follow-ups. It is also an important time for mums to have a check-up and make sure they're on track after giving birth. Issues such as post-partum health, infection, breast care, mental health and sleep are all assessed.

New mothers require even more nutrients during breastfeeding than during pregnancy. Whole Medicine offers you the opportunity to check on common nutrient deficiencies and support you through this period because personalised and researched supplementation may be important for you depending on your dietary needs, family history and lifestyle factors.

The caring doctors at Whole Medicine take great pride in offering you this vital six-week check-up service to ensure your and your baby's health are optimised during this exciting but vulnerable time of life. They also welcome new patients and families.

Book your online appointment today.

Posted in: Women's Health Children's Health Health and Well Being Family GP  

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