Rockin’ Women Wednesdays – Dr. Rachel Wyndham
Dr Rach Medical Doctor and Naturopath joined our community crew at last month’s Rawing To Go wellness business event in Byron Bay. Unbeknown to me, she’d been stalking me for some time! That’s the bit I love the most – when my work has touched someone so prolifically that they leave their well-paying hospital job to join an ever-growing tribe of highly qualified wellness professionals eager to build their entrepreneurial bones. Her story is so intriguing that I am going to hand her over to you right now. Please welcome our shiniest new client and esteemed colleague, Dr Rachel Wyndham to our Rockin’ Women Wednesday stage.
My aunt was a Naturopath in the 70’s, we grew up with sprouts, herbal tonics and muscle testing – way before it was cool. It was the only medicine I knew, and so I started working in health retreats in the 90’s. After completing a naturopathic degree and working in clinic I realised I needed more. More knowledge more power, more drugs, more pathology – so medicine was the logical next step. To integrate western eastern and preventative natural medicine had to be the complete package.
So I slogged it out, shift work hospitals clinics, and three baby girls in the mix. I loved my patients, clinic and my family but was wearing down, I repeated myself on the half hour day in day out with the same message of clean eating, rest for the mind via mediation, good sleep, movement, breathe, sunshine, clean water. Repair the gut. Weed, Seed and Feed. Mind-gut-immune connection. Much of this fell on deaf ears. Where were my tribe? Could I reach those that were searching for this and have more impact in a more effective powerful way? But it was a prestigious hard-earned well-paying job, how could I leave.
I was shown, the hard way! The end of 2013 I nursed my dear friend through her brave battle with breast cancer and said farewell to her the same week of my 40th birthday, was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and all the wheels fell off. I didn’t sleep, my hair was falling out, my memory was frightening, we were running a busy ward in the new hospital and juggling clinic, my children were stumbling along on their own. I was unhappy, worn and resentful.
So my husband shipped me off to the closest thing to a sanitarium these days, a health retreat, in particular, Cabarita Ocean Health Retreat and it all came full circle 20 years later. The health retreat life was for me, not just cold knowledge – educating speaking preaching, but doing feeling loving. I felt the power of Sam’s healing food and heard her wise message through her DVD’s that a business in wellness can be created and successful in many different ways.
So I quit, I walked away, I pledged a year to my family, myself, health and happiness and started journaling and speaking about the process. Softness, self-love, flexibility, choices, care crept back in and have bought me to the truth of wellness. Flow. That as a creative loving healer there is a group of patients I can reach without destroying myself in the process.
“My Health Retreat Life” The simple way to wellness that works.
What’s your survival food when you’re on tour or working late in your business?
My top 3:
1 Snack – Hummus and Carrots or Rice Crackers.
2 Quick Lunch – Tomato Avocado Salmon/Tuna on Goanna Bakery’s GF Toast.
3 Easy Dinner – ‘Beans Rice and Cat Food.’
This meal was named when my youngest developed a love of sharing the cats’ food, so we gave her tinned tuna in a small silver bowl and she was a happy kitty. This habit grew into a stack of rice, organic baked beans, tinned tuna, baby spinach leaves, topped with a fried egg. Delicious nutritious ready in the time it takes the rice cooker to fluff the rice.
2. What’s your healthy go-to comfort food – either at home or in a restaurant?
I sneak a MUGCAKE, it feels like a naughty treat when we lounge around watching The Block.
1 tablespoon almond meal
1 tablespoon cacao powder
1/2 smashed ripe banana
Put all the ingredients into your mug mix/mash it all in with a fork and microwave for 2 minutes. Thais it, Amaze!
If you need that little extra add a spoon of CoYo coconut yoghurt or ice cream.
Although I’m not a friend of my microwave (it is neglected, lives in the laundry and only gets used for the rare ‘hurry up defrost’) This is a spur of the moment recipe in desperation for dessert, ready in 3 minutes! I like to think it redirects the danger time that could end in chocolate biscuits, ice cream or worse. So it’s a trade-off I accept.
3. Do you have a secret remedy that keeps either your voice / mind / body in shape?
The naturopathic principle of the ‘7 Doctors’ is my daily devotion.
3 Clean water
7 Clean eating
I exercise daily but I do get bored with routine, so I have to mix it up. I ride my horse twice a week, do a ballet class once, then either yoga or cycle, and walk the dog in the evening. I meditation daily, drink two pure water and eat a gluten, dairy and moderately sugar-free diet.
But sleep is the most critical for me. Sleep is gold. After working in emergency departments on shift work with small children for too many years, sleep deprivation really makes me anxious. Slow release Melatonin every few weeks for 2-3 night resets the cycle beautifully. If my sleep is becoming unsettled or the fear of poor sleep is setting off my mind and triggering insomnia I know there is a reliable effective natural safe answer. I also put 1/2 cup of epsom salts in our bath every night with 3 drops of organic lavender essential oil, simple but effective.