Interview With Mason From Superfeast

Interview With Mason From Superfeast

SuperFeast is an Australian brand creating powdered extracts of tonic herbs and medicinal mushrooms that are super beneficial to your health. This quote pretty much sums them up! “We really love tonic herbs and medicinal mushrooms. We take them every day. We think they’re awesome. We fell in love with them, they transformed us and we decided we needed to share them with the world. “

 We interviewed the ever inspirational Mason Taylor, creator and founder of SuperFeast & asked him all of our burning questions about medicinal mushrooms.

What inspired you to create Superfeast?

 My journey started pretty simply, I was suffering from my own health issues. I had gnarly and deep-rooted candida issues, brain fog and exhaustion, to name a few. I decided to take these issues into my own hands since I wasn’t seeing any solutions emerging from the Western medical model. I quickly fell in love with medicinal mushrooms, especially reishi and chaga as I felt these were the two that helped restore my immune health and remove the excess candida from my system. I then went on to fall in love with Taoist tonic herbalism (a form of traditional Chinese medicine). Very, very quickly, I realised I needed to share the ancient wisdom of these herbs with anyone who was wishing to access their magic. My mum actually really pushed me to start SuperFeast (she named the company) and since 2011, we haven’t looked back.

 

Who inspires you?

 Stephen Harrod Buhner- A beautiful earth poet who can ride the wild waves of natural wonder in word and consciousness as well as being a very successful clinical herbalist teacher. He creates a great bridge between natural healing and what modern data is showing us 

Could you please explain what exactly medicinal mushrooms are and how they can help our health? 

Tonic herbs (this includes medicinal mushrooms) fall into the “superior herb” category. These are the herbs that are collectively known to be safe, gentle, well-tolerated and effective. Tonic herbs do not force the body to change, but rather work with it to adapt, allowing a measured, nourishing and normalising effect to unfold within the body and its systems. Traditionally consumed daily to promote longevity and prevent illness, these remedies offer nourishment to the vital organs, strengthen essential functions and improve quality of life, without negative side effects. Tonic herbs are further categorised as Yin, Yang, Qi and Blood tonics. Tonic herbs are not a trend. They are grounded in thousands of years of empirical evidence. Their safety has been verified in modern times with scientific research, confirming the effects the ancient herbal scientists monitored over thousands of years of practice.

How can you find out which blend is right for you?

When people are starting out in tonic herbalism common complaints with their herbal and healthcare specialists describe adrenal exhaustion and depletion of sex hormone function with our hectic Western lifestyle being a contributor. Jing herbs from the JING blend enter the kidney system and may replenish its innate capacity to function. From here the adrenal glands are potentially able to become revitalised. The herbs come in as a supportive measure to assist the smooth flow of Qi within the organ systems, and the body as a whole in its day to day functioning.

Mason’s Mushrooms covers two other aspects that people are craving in this Western world – restoring immunity and aiding gut function. Medicinal mushrooms (there are 8 in this blend) are specialists at getting deep into our immune system and turning on the lights where the lights weren’t on As seen from the nutritional benefits of mushrooms alone. Essentially this means that the sophistication and the intelligence of your immune system to rid your body of pathogens and keep your energy vitalised may be thoroughly enhanced. What many people don’t realise is the compounds in medicinal mushrooms can potentiate and promote intestinal immunity which is necessary, for us to absolutely thrive. People are discovering that when they get onto the JING and Mason’s Mushrooms blends they feel they are able to deeply restore their bodies on more levels than one. The potency of the tonic herbs may assist the body to return to its innate rhythm and flow, encouraging vibrancy and lightness within all the major systems and across the mental, physical and spiritual landscapes. 

We like to think of these two unique formulas as our bread and butter blends, great inclusions to the daily diet that offer support to the kidneys, adrenals, gut and immune system and that’s why they’re my absolute favourite combo.

What supplement would you recommend coming into the colder months?

 Definitely the QI blend – Keeping the spleen nurtured and the energy flowing around the body to keep the surface immunity strong.

Qi is the energy that animates our body, mind, cells and organs, and drives their functions. The QI blend is a beautifully crafted formula using the most revered Qi tonics of the Taoist tradition. These herbs are traditionally used to tonify our metabolic fire so we can feel greater energy and vitality.

The herbs in the QI blend are prized for their ability to amplify the usual conversion of these elements and processes to deliver more Qi to the body system daily. Through the tonification of Spleen Qi and Lung Qi in particular, the herbs in the Qi blend may assist and contribute deeply on the body’s digestive and respiratory power. We cultivate Qi with the intention to increase the body’s capacity to build and move Blood, eliminate stagnation and regulate temperature and Fluid level.

What is a quote that you live by?

“First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you” – F Scott Fitzgerald

 What is your favourite recipe that incorporates a Superfeast product?

 Hot chocolate

What is the harvesting process for the herbs and mushrooms?

Our herbs are grown in their natural wild environments and harvested as per the Di Tao, a practice deeply rooted in tradition and respect for the herb and the land on which it grows. This means we source our herbs from the pristine mountain regions of China and India; this practice ensures that the rhythm of the herbs wild environment is captured and retained so the strength and adaptability it has cultivated through the growing process can be passed on to the consumer. This results in the most potent and robust product that is both full spectrum and beyond organic. We invite families and practitioners alike to try these well tolerated yet powerful tonic herbs, to elevate mind, body and spirit. In order to achieve a true full-spectrum extract that meets our personal standards you need folks working with the extracts who are highly trained in both the equipment we use and the herbs and so these recommendations should be made under the care of practicing herbalist, naturopath or health care professional. The herbs are processed in a fully GMP accredited facility, operated by a team including tonic herbalists who are classically trained in herbalism, and thus they share the intent of SuperFeast. Rather than following industry standards and automation procedures for extracting the herbs, we sought a team who understood the unique characteristics of each herb and were able to extract upon these as the Taoists did. 

 The name for this practice used by herbalists in antiquity is Hou Hou (火候). This is the art of decocting / extracting a herb specifically through adjusted heat, pressure, menstruum and length of time required to extract each herb fully and without denaturing it. This term roughly translates to heat control; crucial moment; maturity. 

 Each herb or mushroom goes through a 2-3 stage high pressure extraction process. This is where we ensure that every ounce of medicine within the herb is carefully transferred into the extraction medium to eventually become the extract powder we all love. The temperature and timing are unique to each herb and are strictly controlled in order to ensure it is not heated too much, nor for too long. This Hou Hou practice is a never-ending, dynamic process that means you will have the intention that is poured into every SuperFeast herb.

What is your favourite Superfeast product and why?

 My two blend babies, JING and Mason’s Mushrooms are so simple as an entry point, yet I’ve also seen this combination transform people’s health and general wellbeing, almost more than any other. We like to see people start off using a Jing herb and a medicinal mushroom when beginning their journey with tonic herbalism. Jing is the primordial essence in Traditional Chinese Medicine, which resides in the kidneys and it gives us our core energy and stamina allowing us to optimise our health and wellbeing.  

 

Have you got anything exciting in the works that you can give us a teaser on?

I’ve got some herbal concoctions always in the mix, and I’ve got something sexual and something sleepy brewing up.

 Additionally, I’ve got a pretty extensive online course about to drop that has been in the works for AGES. Really excited about that one, I’ll be sharing the full array of my health foundations.

 

Mocktails With Imbibe

Mocktails With Imbibe

5 Mocktails to make with your Imbibe Beauty Renewal

Treat yourself to a cheeky mid-week mocktail with all the added benefits of Imbibe Beauty Renewal, which is microbiologist and scientist created to promote gut health and glowing skin.

This beauty renewal tonic contains the goodness of approximately 6 billion probiotics per serve and multi-strain probiotics, including strains from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium families. These probiotic powerhouses play a significant role in supporting our body functionality such as digestion and staving off harmful bacteria.

The flow on effect of balanced gut health can be endless for our bodies. Think radiant glowing skin, stronger hair and nails!

Now let’s take all that good stuff and turn it into some mocktails you can feel good about!

Rosé

Ingredients:

 .15ml Imbibe Beauty Renewal

. Rose petal tea

. Agave or honey

. Rosehip Hibiscus tea

 

Method:

 1.Brew your tea, then chill in the fridge

2.To rim the outside of your glass, dip into the honey or agave then into the rose petals

3.Mix your Imbibe and chilled tea in the glass and serve with ice

Pimm’s

Ingredients:

 .15ml Imbibe Beauty Renewal

. Sliced strawberries

. Fresh mint leaves

. Sparkling water

 

Method:

 1.Pour the Imbibe and sparkling water over a glass of ice

2.Garnish with fresh mint and strawberries

Frozen Tropical Daiquiri

Ingredients:

 .15ml Imbibe Beauty Renewal

.1/2 cup frozen mango

.1/2 cup frozen pineapple

.1/2 cup coconut water

 

Method:

 1.Blitz everything in a bender together

2.Serve with a straw (eco-friendly straw of course)

Bellini

Ingredients:

 .15ml Imbibe Beauty Renewal

.1 Peach

. Peach juice (you can substitute this with any juice of your choice really)

. Sparkling water

 

Method:

 1.Pour together into a champagne glass, juice and sparkling water in equal parts

2.Garnish with a slice of peach

Aperitif Spritz

Ingredients:

.15ml Imbibe Beauty Renewal

. Sparkling water

. Fresh orange slice

. Fresh lemon slice

 

Method:

1.Pour the Imbibe and sparkling water over a generous serve of ice

2.Garnish with orange and lemon slices

Cold & Flu Season: Interview With a Naturopath

Cold & Flu Season: Interview With a Naturopath

  1. Firstly, could you please remind us what the classic symptoms of a cold & flu are?

The classic symptoms of cold and flu may include, sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing, cough, fever, aches and pains headache, weakness and fatigue.

 

  1. Are there any products you can recommend that would ease these symptoms? 

Some of my go to products when a client comes in with cold and flu symptoms are Bioceuticals ArmaForce, Fusion Astra 8, Fusion Cold and Flu and Ethical Nutrients Immune Defence. These products contain beautiful combinations of herbs and nutrients that help to support and nourish your immune system and alleviate symptoms.

  1. Is there anything else we can be doing in our daily routine that can help alleviate symptoms, like having a bath? 

Yes, there are a number of things you can do to help alleviate cold and flu symptoms. Using a humidifier or vaporiser with eucalyptus or peppermint oils can help with congestion and cough. Manuka honey can help alleviate a sore throat it is a fantastic antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. When looking for a Manuka honey choose one with a high UMF or MGO rating, the higher the rating, the higher the antibacterial content of the honey. 

A hot shower or bath can be very beneficial, the steam can help moisten your airways and loosen any mucus. Be cautious of the temperature when experiencing a fever. 

A nice warm drink, with lemon, ginger and manuka honey can help reduce a sore throat and persistent cough.

  1. Is there any way to fast track your cold or flu to get rid of it faster? 

 How long a cold or flu lingers around will depend on how well your immune system is functioning. If you are fit and healthy and take care of yourself your immune system will be better equipped to fight off any foreign invaders. Herbal and nutritional supplements can help to boost the immune system, I highly recommend taking supplements leading up to and going right through the cold and flu season.

  1. Probably the most important question of all, how would you suggest we boost our immune system, give us the complete low down, supplements, vitamins, daily practices, food choices! 

Thankfully there are so many ways we can boost our immune system which can be incorporated into each day. 

Eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables such as blueberries, blackberries, mulberries, carrots, beetroot, capsicum, kale and spinach, these are high in antioxidants which protect our cells and nutrients that we need for our immune system to function. Fresh is best!

Avoid sugar, processed foods and alcohol, these foods contain very little nutrients and deplete our immune system.

Try to avoid or minimise stress in your life. Stress hormones inhibit the function of your immune system. This could result in worsened infections and slower healing. Take time each day for relaxation and do something you enjoy. 

Exercise regularly. Regular, moderate exercise may improve immune function. Walking, swimming, riding, dancing or yoga are great options. 

Ensure you drink plenty of water each day, six-eight glasses per day is ideal. Water is essentials for all aspects of good health. 

Be sure you get enough restorative sleep, adults require 7-9 hours a night. Your immune system repairs and rebuilds while you are asleep at night. 

There are a number of fantastic herbs and nutrients that help boost your immune system such as astragalus, andrographis, echinacea, olive leaf, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin A and zinc.

Sunshine Soup

Sunshine Soup

Warm up with a nourishing bowl of smooth and velvety Sunshine soup, packed full of superfoods to give your immune a boost. Super easy to make a full of delicious flavour that the family will love.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking: 30 minutes

Serves: 5

Ingredients:

 .1 large white onion

.2 cloves garlic

.3cm ginger

.1 tsp turmeric

.1 tbsp Superfeast Turkey Tail

.2 cup carrot

.3 cup sweet potato

.1/2 lemon

.Nutra Organics chicken bone broth

.1 cup chickpeas

Let’s begin:

 

1.Add a splash of olive oil into your soup pot over a medium high heat, dice the onion and add them into the pot along the ginger and garlic (both roughly chopped).

 

2.Sauté in the pot until beautifully fragrant and slightly softened. Add the turmeric and the Superfeast Turkey Tail powder. Cook for a further minute to toast the turmeric.

 

3.Season with salt and pepper. Take the mixture off the heat while you chop the sweet potato and carrots, cut them in fairly small chunks so it cooks faster.

 

4.Bring the pot back to a medium high heat and add the sweet potato and carrot, sauté until you get a little bit of colour on them. Grate in your lemon zest.

 

5.Whilst the mixture is sautéing make your broth according to the instructions on the packet.

 

6.Add the nourishing broth to the soup pot and bring to a simmer on a medium heat.

 

7.Cover the pot and let simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the carrot and potato are tender.

 

8.Whilst the soup bubbles away you can drain and rinse your chickpeas.

 

9.When the soup is ready add the chickpeas to the pot along with the juice of half a lemon.

 

10.Blitz the soup until silky smooth and it’s ready to eat!

 

11.Serve with a crispy topping like this coconut bacon or for extra superfood points, some toasted seeds and nuts.

Follow us @wholelifepharmacyandhealthfood for more daily inspiration! 

Looking for more dinner/lunch inspiration? Check out our Vegetarian Dumplings

Food Is Medicine

Food Is Medicine

“Food is Medicine” is a term that was originally conceived by Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine; it was his belief that eating wholesome ‘superfoods’ is the basis for good health.

Superfoods are whole foods in their most natural and rawest form and are typically considered to be extremely nutritious and beneficial to our overall health and wellbeing.

We have spent time exploring the superfoods that you can incorporate into your diet, helping keep your body fit and healthy. 

Here is a shortlist of some of our favourite and most versatile superfoods:

1. Dark green leafy vegetables

An excellent source of nutrients including folate, zinc, calcium, iron, magnesium, vitamin C and fibre. All of the micronutrients needed to help fight infection include vitamins A, B, C, D and E, and the minerals iron, selenium and zinc. So, you’re off to a good start with a healthy serving of dark green leafy vegetables like kale, spinach or swiss chard.

2. Berries

Berries are a nutritional powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, fibre and antioxidants! Enjoy them in a smoothie, with cereal or muesli or on their own. Some delicious options are raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and cranberries.

3. Kefir and Yoghurt

Kefir and yoghurt are both fermented products usually made from milk and contain protein, calcium, B vitamins, potassium and probiotics. Probiotics can add back the good bacteria in your gut.

4. Green Tea

Green tea is rich in antioxidants and polyphenolic compounds which can have strong anti-inflammatory effects. There’s never been a better time to brew a pot of tea, light some candles and read a book!

5. Garlic

Garlic is a full of flavour and boosts any dish you put it in, it is also a great source of manganese, vitamin c, vitamin B6, selenium and fibre. Vitamin B6 is especially important in contributing to the body’s first response once it has recognised a pathogen entering the body.

6. Eggs

Whole eggs are rich in nutrients such as B vitamins, choline, selenium, vitamin A, iron and phosphorus. Vitamin A is vital in maintaining the structure of cells in the skin, respiratory tract and gut. If you are vegan don’t worry, you can also find vitamin A in tofu, legumes and nuts.

Hot tip! Most WholeLife Pharmacy & Healthfood stores stock eggs from local farmers!

7. Mushrooms

Nutrient content varies depending on the type of mushroom, however the benefits of mushrooms are huge. They are full of micronutrients including B vitamins, iron, selenium and vitamin D. Cooking mushrooms increases availability of the nutrients so eat them fried, roasted or in a soup.

8. Seaweed

Seaweed is not only a delicious snack it also packs multiple nutrients including vitamin K, folate, iodine and fibre. Iodine helps support your thyroid gland and the vitamins help protect your cells from damage.

9. Sweet Potato

Packed with nutrients, sweet potatoes are one of the most versatile and healthy vegetables available. Full of potassium, fibre and vitamins A & C, they’re also a good source of carotenoids, a type of antioxidant that is known to help build your body’s immunity against diseases.

Stay tuned for a delicious superfood packed soup recipe from us that will be your saviour this Winter!

Check out our Sunshine Soup reciepe jammed packed with superfood

Follow us on Instagram @wholelifepharmacyandhealthfoods

Maintaining Mental Health in Isolation

Maintaining Mental Health in Isolation

These have been trying times for us all as we navigate uncertain situations and changes to our everyday lives. Each of us may experience different feelings of anxiety, fear and worry at different times. Coping with these feelings will help you manage your mental health during this challenging period of uncertainty. 

 

Here at WholeLife we have gathered some tips and tricks on managing mental health at this crazy time in the world.

Pause and Reflect – take a moment to pause, breathe and reflect. With the changes happening around you, it is important to take notice, acknowledge and accept the thoughts and feelings that you are experiencing.  Try to let go of negative or unpleasant feelings that you are experiencing.

Set a routine – You might find it helpful to schedule your day out to give you a sense of structure and normalisation. Your days should include a certain amount of work time, self-care time (check out our self-care guide blog here), time for chores and cooking, and time for social activities (think phone calls, Facetime, zoom and house party). Anchor yourself in what you can control and take time to focus on the present.

Mindfulness and Meditation – but do it your way. Consider downloading an app to help manage your thoughts and feelings.  Some great options can be found at Headspace. Did you know that dancing is a form of meditation? If you struggle to find a meditative state in stillness and silence we highly recommend trying this, not only is it a great way to reset and relax, you are also getting your body moving. Turn off the lights, light some candles, turn up the music loud, close your eyes and dance in any way that feels instinctual to you.

Exercise – As tempting as it is to sit on your lounge all day and watch TV, it is not so good for your mental health. Get outside and go for a walk (remember to maintain your social distance) or do an online workout or yoga class, there are so many options out there at the moment including free ones. Exercise releases chemicals like serotonin and endorphins that can improve your mood. Exercise is a good addition to your routine that you can look forward to.

Manage your exposure to news media and social media coverage – Try not to have the news on all day, the human brain is more responsive to negative news, leaving you feel drained and down. When you do consume news, be mindful of the source of information and ensure you are accessing good quality and accurate information. Instead why not have a look at things like memes, tiktok videos, funny YouTube clips and pics of cute animals to keep your spirits high and the energy positive. Share them with your friends and family, who knows, you could make their day!

Stay Connected – Remember that we are all in this together, so staying connected can help both yourself and your friends and family during these confronting times. Look out for those who may feel more isolated and vulnerable.  Maybe schedule regular phone calls, skype or Zoom catch ups.  A connection to another human being can definitely make a difference to your day.

Seek additional support – If you feel that the stress and anxiety is getting too much, there are options available for accessing information and support services.  You are never on your own.

Beyond Blue 24/7 phone  1300 224 636 or online support www.beyondblue.org.au
Lifeline 24/7 phone 131144 or online crisis support www.lifeline.org.au

For additional information and resources on mental health:
Black Dog Institute:  www.blackdoginstitute.org.au
Sane Australia:  www.sane.org

 

Finding what works for you is key. Do you have any tips that you’ve been using? Leave them in the comments below.