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Herbal Medicine Week With Whole Alchemy

Katie Gregory a qualified Naturopath and Nutritionist, proud member of the Australian Natural Therapists Association and founder of Whole Alchemy, based in Bilgola Plateau, on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. Before Katie...

Katie Gregory a qualified Naturopath and Nutritionist, proud member of the Australian Natural Therapists Association and founder of Whole Alchemy, based in Bilgola Plateau, on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

Before Katie discovered natural therapies she had little understanding of how to treat her body properly.  Living a life that involved excess in many areas left her both physically and emotionally depleted.  After finding Naturopathy Katie quickly discovered how amazing the world of natural medicine is and how much we can do for ourselves in order to prevent illness as well as recover from it.

Katie is passionate about sharing her knowledge and using skills to improve the health of those around her as well as giving clients the tools and confidence to achieve their goals.


Tell us about yourself and what you do?

I am a naturopath, nutritionist living in Avalon on the Northern Beaches of Sydney with my family; my husband Nick and our two children, Winnie and Dusty. I practice in clinic supporting clients to realign their health & wellness and to search for simplicity amongst the chaos of daily life. I am so honoured to be able to hold a space for my clients and support them to facilitate healing and movement through their health. Mixing herbal remedies for my clients is one of my most sacred practices. In our spare time the family and I will often be found down at the beach, cooking up a family feast or going bush on an adventure.

Why did you become a naturopath?

After years of working within the fashion industry, I felt myself craving something that I was truly passionate about. I wanted a role that could connect me to my values, and impact the lives of others. By chance I saw an ad for an open day at Nature Care College. On a whim, I decided to go and hear what it was all about. Having never seen a naturopath before, I had little understanding of what to expect or what the course would entail. When I first went to that talk, I felt inspired, mesmerised, and excited about what naturopathy had to offer. Having done no other research on the course or the profession, I signed up immediately following this talk; it was one of the best decisions I ever made. Beginning the course, I felt like I was exactly where I was meant to be. Becoming a naturopath has enlightened me to the wonderous powers of plant medicine & how much we can do to enhance our well-being and prevent further disharmony within the body in a holistic manner. 

What are your earliest memories of beauty?

At a young age I most definitely did not feel beautiful. My confidence was low, and I absolutely associated outward beauty with helping one to achieve happiness & acceptance. In terms of products I used, I had no idea that would we put on our skin could impact our health. I would buy cheap pharmacy brand products, riddled with fragrances, colours and harmful ingredients. I am so thankful I now know what I do about beauty products and can educate my daughter not only how to embrace her natural beauty, but also how important it is to choose products that will not negatively impact her health. 

How do you like to nurture yourself; do you practice any self-care rituals?

Becoming a mother really challenged me to ensure I weave in daily rhythms of self-care. After I had my children, I quickly fell into a place of putting everyone's needs before my own. Knowing this practice was not sustainable, I returned to simple and intentional nourishment to fulfill me. Restful sleeps, movement, nourishing grounding foods, plenty of water and soulful connections with others keep both my mind and physical body in its best state. Herbal medicine and nutritional supplementation are regularly found in my daily regime and can change depending on how my current health is. 

Did you grow up with naturopathic medicine or did you find it on your own?

Whilst not completely following a naturopathic upbringing, my parents both had rituals that I can now appreciate as an influence to becoming open to the magic of naturopathic medicine. My dad always loved nature, the great outdoors - he was and still is to this day a lover of spending the day out in nature - hiking, in the ocean or simply appreciating the glory of what nature has to give. My mum was always in the kitchen, morning, noon and night. We were absolutely spoilt by her cooking; she was always whipping up some mouth-watering dish. I honestly feel my move into naturopathy was fate, as now I couldn't picture myself working in any other capacity than in this space.

What are the greatest lessons you’ve learned from plants?

How much power and change plant medicine can pass on to us if we are willing to listen. Mother nature is an absolute force who is able to provide us with the tools to support anyone in their journey through health. It is with much appreciation I honour the ability to work with plant medicine and to share this wisdom that has been passed on to me. 

What does a day in the life as a naturopath look like?

I have always been an early riser, I am fond of starting my day with movement in the form of a sunrise beach walk, or a pilates class. Mornings can be busy in our household with the kids usually full of energy upon waking. I either will spend my day working or with my youngest, Dusty (he starts school next year, so I am so mindful of these last precious days before a whole new chapter cracks open). When I have a clinic day this can be a mix of virtual or in clinic sessions. I feel so fortunate to be able to have both options to offer my clients. For my face-to-face clients, I practice out of Gracefully Whole - a beautiful personal training studio found in Bilgola Plateau. For my virtual sessions, I will work from the comfort of my home. I love the ability to connect with my clients in person, however, the flexibility that virtual sessions offer is wonderful. I have clients all over Australia, and I can offer support to those who may find it difficult to make it to an appointment, (especially useful for my mumma clients who have small children at home). I will spend time writing up treatment plans, prioritising appropriate supplementation and crafting tailored herbal blends for my clients. Whilst doing this I will forever be sipping a herbal tea of some sort, nettle or rooibos chai's are high on rotation at the moment. I find the evening is when I often blend my herbal remedies; when the sun has set, the children are peacefully sleeping, and the house is tidied I find a certain tranquil space to weave a blend of herbs together. I most certainly am not a night owl, and will be happily tucked in bed by 9pm.


Are there any herbs, supplement ingredients or foods you find helpful for skin health?

Absolutely hydration is one of the key pillars in taking care of your skin, this alone can bring so much clarity. Looking at the root cause of any skin imbalance is key when treating any skin condition, this often will begin in the gut. Eating plenty of foods rich in antioxidants, probiotics or gut healing foods like collagen, bone broths, or oily fish may all improve skin health. I often will prescribe supplements such as essential fatty acids (in the form of fish oils, or algae-based oils), zinc, probiotics, or vitamins A, C or D to support a healthy complexion. Herbal allies can make profound differences to skin health, I will often look to herbs such as calendula, echinacea, liver loving herbs such as dandelion root, or globe artichoke, as well as herbs such as gotu kola, or licorice will often be found in my skin herbal mixes. 

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