Jun 01

Dee Copland Naturopath is on facebook!

Dee on Facebook

For up to date tips and motivation, please LIKE my page, Dee Copland Naturopath & Nutritionist

Jul 27

Moroccan Chickpea and Lentil Soup Recipe

There is always a lot of debate around eating well and affordability.

Often nourishing food may require more shopping around and it can take a little more time to prepare, but it doesn’t have to cost more.

Make the most of dried herbs and spices to add interesting flavours to meals and you could even try growing fresh herbs on the windowsill or in the garden. This chickpea and lentil soup is warming, filling, tasty and nourishing and costs very little to make.

Here are why some of the ingredients used are beneficial:

Tomatoes are one of the richest sources of the anti-ageing antioxidant lycopene. To make the most of the lycopene available in tomatoes, they are best cooked. I also recommend buying tomatoes in a glass jar as the acidity can eat into the aluminium tin.

This is also the view of Terry Wahls, who wrote the famous Wahls Protocol after curing herself of MS. You can reuse the glass jar as a vase for flowers or perhaps a homemade chutney.

In recipes, swap brown onions for red onions. Generally, the more intense the colour and flavour of plant foods, the more phytonutrients it has; onions contain quercetin. As well as protecting against heart disease and cancer, quercetin may help to reduce allergy symptoms by reducing allergic reactions.

Turmeric is a very popular spice for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Medicinally, it is now being successfully used in the treatment of depression. If you buy organic turmeric, it is almost an orange colour. It has a very earthy flavour.

Ginger is a warming spice that is commonly used in herbal medicine as an anti-inflammatory as well as for digestive issues and circulation. It is a nice addition to meals or as a herbal tea, especially in winter.

You can make your own beef, lamb or chicken stock following a roast meal.

Stock is simmered for a short period of time (slow cooked between 3 and 4 hours) with the skins of carrots, tops off celery etc and is a great way to flavour food.

Stock may yield a small amount of gelatin, depending on the bones used. Gelatin is great for the health of your gut wall as well as joints.

Adding a splash of apple cider vinegar to your stock (or broth, which is cooked for around 24 hours) will help to draw out some of the nutrients in the bones.

Once you have finished cooking your stock, you should be able to lift out the bones. This also freezes well for later use. Vegetable stock is also perfect with this recipe, if preferred.

Sourdough bread can be a good option for bread-lovers. It is made by the fermentation of dough using naturally occurring lactobacilli and yeast.

If you are looking for a short series to watch on a cold evening, Cooked by Michael Pollen is a great one on Netflix. His four episodes are about the traditional methods of cooking so in the Air episode, he explores sourdough.

-The advice contained in this column is not intended to be a substitute for direct, personalised advice from a health professional.

-By Deanna Copland

Published in Otago Daily Times

Wednesday 26 July 2017

Moroccan chickpea and lentil soup

Serves 4

1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 onion, diced
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp ginger (fresh or dried)
½ tsp cinnamon
500g Dolmio Classic Tomato Pasta Sauce
90g red lentils, soaked as per packet instructions
1 litre vegetable/chicken stock
420g can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 Tbsp chopped coriander
2 Tbsp chopped parsley

Heat oil on a low heat in a large pot and add onion. Cook slowly for 10 minutes or until softened and translucent.

Add ginger, turmeric, cinnamon and tomatoes then combine. Stir in the lentils and pour in the stock. Pop the lid on then bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until the lentils are soft.

Stir in the chickpeas and fresh herbs and season to taste.

Cook for a further 3 minutes.

Serve soup hot, garnished with parsley and coriander and with some fresh sourdough on the side, if desired.

Jul 18

How diet and lifestyle can affect your mood

Happiness is subjective.

It has been defined as having a cognitive and affective component: Frequent positive emotions such as joy, affection, pride and tranquillity AND a sense that one’s life is good.

We know that those in a happy mood are more creative, have better relationships, stronger immune systems and perform better at their daily work tasks.

A recent news report revealed around 15,000 teenagers in New Zealand take anti-depressant medications. Fifteen thousand.

Globally, mood and mental disorders are on the rise with the World Health Organisation reporting that mental disorders are now the leading cause of disability in the United States, Canada and Australasia.

Certain biological pathways influence mood and behaviour. The end products of these are neurotransmitters – chemical messengers that communicate information throughout our brain and body. They all play different roles and are involved in different things.

As far as mood and behaviour are concerned, these are the key functions of some neurotransmitters.

Dopamine: motivation, mood, memory, movement

Noradrenaline: mood-enhancing

Adrenaline: stress response

Serotonin: mood-enhancing, pain control, appetite regulation

Melatonin: regulation of circadian rhythms, sleep promotion, GABA receptor regulation

GABA: dampens, calms, vision and motor control, sleep maintenance

Endorphins: euphoria, pain-control

Acetylcholine: memory, alertness

When treating mood disorders, the approach of pharmaceutical medication is to target neurotransmitters, increasing their uptake into the cell.

However, current research is instead investigating what is causing dysregulation in these pathways.

Taking into account factors about each individual such as immunity, sleep patterns, diet, exercise and socialisation is so important in supporting healthy neurotransmitter production.

Causes of imbalances may include inflammation, infection, oxidative stress or mitochondrial dysfunction.

Diet and lifestyle have been shown to play a major role in both disrupting these pathways as well as correcting them.

The British Journal of Psychiatry published a study that showed people who consumed diets high in processed food were more likely to develop depression.

The brain is an organ therefore each of its cells has a high demand for nutrients.

A large portion of the nervous system is located around the gut walls also therefore digestive issues can contribute to or exacerbate mood disorders and vice versa.

Gut health, with optimal balance of bacteria, is now considered to be very important to mental health. Lactobacillus helveticus is a strain of bacteria that has been linked with reducing anxiety in humans. This is available in supplement form.

Amino acids (from protein-rich foods) are the building blocks of neurotransmitters.

While some amino acids are found in plant foods, tryptophan, the main precursor to serotonin, is found mostly in animal sources such as chicken, fish and turkey.

GABA is the brain’s peacemaker, regulating stress hormones and creating a sense of calm. A deficiency sign can be anxiety and panic attacks.

Glutamine is the precursor to help to make GABA, helping improve both mental energy and relaxation, reduce alcohol cravings and addiction, stabilise blood sugar and promote memory.

Glutamine supplements are often taken by athletes as it helps to support immunity and improve muscle repair.

Cabbage-based sauerkraut raises glutamine levels and production of GABA, as well as improving healthy bacteria balance in the gut. Beef, chicken, fish and eggs are good food sources. Herbal medicines such as Kava Kava, Zizyphus, Magnolia and Passionflower have all been shown to support this pathway also.

Green tea contains the amino acid L-theanine, which antagonises the stimulating effect of caffeine, promoting a sense of calm. It also modifies brain serotonin levels.

Look for organic green teas to avoid spray exposure and add a little cold water to the cup first to avoid drawing out the bitterness. Reducing caffeine intake through coffee and the likes of Coca-Cola is beneficial for anxiety also.

Complex carbohydrates are essential to fuel the brain and provide cofactors for neurotransmitter production.

Refined carbohydrates create an imbalance in blood sugar levels, which contributes to mood disorders.

In That Sugar Film, Damon Gameau embarks on a unique experiment to document the effects of a highly processed diet and one of the very early signs he noticed was a negative change in his mood – he was noticeably irritable and easily frustrated.

Sourcing carbohydrates from wholegrains such as oats and quinoa or root vegetables is vital.

Phospholipids found mainly in egg yolks form neuronal membranes and receptor sites where neurotransmitters communicate. A vegan source is lecithin granules.

Good fats are particularly important for reducing inflammation and supporting a healthy mood. Oily fish such as mackerel, salmon, anchovies and sardines all provide omega 3 for healthy neuron communication.

B vitamins are essential and deficiencies can result in the following mood and behavioural changes:

B1 and B2: poor concentration/ attention

B3: depression, psychosis

B6: irritability, depression, poor memory

B9 (folic acid): depression, dementia

B12: depression, pain, irritability, lack of motivation

Minerals are very important in maintaining a healthy mood.

Low magnesium is associated with anxiety and depression while high calcium levels are often seen in depression.

Zinc is fundamental to neurotransmitter balance and this can easily be tested through an oral taste test.

Food sources of zinc include beef, oysters and pumpkin seeds however if deficient, a zinc powder is the best option to improve levels.

Mental health is a complex area therefore I would recommend talking to a qualified naturopath for dietary and supplement advice.

-The advice contained in this column is not intended to be a substitute for direct, personalised advice from a health professional.

By Deanna Copland

Nov 21

Asparagus with Tahini Dressing Recipe

Asparagus is a spring vegetable native to Europe, Africa and Asia. To maximise its in season, nutritional value, now is the time to be enjoying it.

Silica is a mineral which is important for healthy bones, smooth skin, shiny hair and strong nails.  Eating asparagus is an easy way to absorb more of this mineral.

As well as silica, asparagus is also a good source of fibre, vitamins A, B1, C and K as well as folate and iron. It offers small amounts of vitamin E, B2 and the minerals potassium, selenium, phosphorus, manganese, copper and calcium.

Some people notice a pungent smell from their urine after eating asparagus. This is a normal reaction due to the body metabolizing the sulfur compounds.

You can find asparagus in green, white, and even purple varieties. Look for stalks that are dry and tight and avoid those that are soft, limp or wilted.

Asparagus can be kept fresh by wrapping the stem ends in a wet paper towel and storing in a sealed plastic bag in the fridge or leaving the spears in a glass with a small amount of water in it. Asparagus can be eaten raw or cooked.

Young asparagus stems can be eaten whole, however, larger, thicker asparagus may need to have the bottoms removed as they become tough and woody as they age. When preparing asparagus, simply press the bottom end of the spear between your thumbs and forefingers and they will easily snap off at the woody end.

Fortunately, the trend of soggy canned asparagus in white bread rolls has passed.  Nowadays we can enjoy this delicious vegetable in many delicious ways. 

Here are some ideas of how to incorporate more asparagus in your daily diet:

§  Add a handful of freshly blanched asparagus to an omelette or scrambled eggs with salmon and hollandaise.

§  Sauté asparagus in a small amount of extra virgin olive oil and minced garlic. Add roughly chopped toasted almonds. Season with freshly ground black pepper and fresh lemon juice and rind as a side dish.

§  Add chopped asparagus to your next salad or wrap.

§  Wrap with bacon and cook on the barbeque or under the grill.

§  As a side dish, with tahini dressing (recipe below).


Asparagus with tahini dressing

Serves 4

24 spears fresh asparagus, tough ends snapped off and discarded

Dressing –

3 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp soy sauce (or tamari to make it gluten-free)

2 tbsp tahini

2 tbsp warm water

1 large clove garlic, crushed

Cook asparagus in enough lightly salted boiling water to cover. Cook 3 minutes then drain and refresh under cold water to retain colour and crunch.

Shake all dressing ingredients together in a jar.  Drizzle over the top of the asparagus and enjoy.


Article published in Otago Daily Times, November 2016

Nov 21

Slowing the ageing process

The Fountain of Youth is a spring that supposedly restores the youth of anyone who drinks or bathes in its waters, writes Naturopath Deanna Copland.

Article published in Otago Daily Times, October 2016

Tales of such a fountain have been recounted across the world for thousands of years and the legend became particularly prominent in the 16th century when it was attached to the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon.

Unfortunately, like the rest of us, skin ages despite this legend. The good news is that we can look after our skin from the inside out to slow this process.

Skin is the body’s largest organ and is made up of three layers. The outermost later, the epidermis, contains proteins, pigment and skin cells and forms a protective physical barrier.

The dermis, or middle layer, contains collagen and elastin, which provide strength, firmness and elasticity. It also contains blood vessels, immune cells, nerves and glands that produce sweat and oil.

The subcutaneous layer, the deepest layer, consists of connective tissue, fat, blood vessels, hair follicles and sweat glands. All the layers of the skin contain some connective tissues with collagen fibres for support.

Blackcurrants and pinot noir grapes have to work harder to protect themselves from the sun than...

Blackcurrants and pinot noir grapes have to work harder to protect themselves from the sun than the likes of strawberries, so have a higher antioxidant content. Photo: ODT

As we age, our skin undergoes a number of changes. Epidermal cells don’t slough off as easily. Skin doesn’t retain as much moisture. The collagen and elastin in the middle layer break down. As a result, the skin is less firm and less elastic.

The dynamic physiology of the body needs to continually take in nutrition to help repair or build new tissue.

Ingesting specific nutrients provides nourishment to the skin, helping to combat the signs of ageing, preventing damage to skin cells, increasing hydration and supporting collagen. So, what nutrients are beneficial for our skin?

Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant that is produced in some plants to protect themselves from the environment. Being darker in colour, blackcurrants and pinot noir grapes have to work harder to protect themselves from the sun than the likes of strawberries, so have a higher antioxidant content.

Research on resveratrol is looking at its antioxidant properties and its potential in the areas of longevity, anti-inflammatory actions, heart health and anti-cancer properties.

Berries are a wonderful addition to your daily food intake and can take a bowl of porridge or smoothie to the next level.

Essential fatty acids (EFA) help to regulate oil production by influencing the cellular membrane and its ability to hold water, resulting in more balanced dermal hydration and softer, more supple skin.

EFAs also support the barrier function of the epidermis, slowing down the drying process and reducing damage from UV light.

The human body cannot manufacture EFAs so they must come from the diet. Good sources include sardines and salmon as well as flaxseed oil and chia seeds.

Hyaluronic acid (HA) plays a role in the control of tissue hydration and water transport in the body, helping support supple, plump-looking, hydrated skin.

HA supports cell turnover and contributes to the complex process of tissue repair and wound healing. A good source is a home-made bone broth made with leftover roast bones and chicken feet and/or necks.

There are many recipes online, as this staple of most cultures makes a comeback.

Vitamin C is a key nutrient for the production of collagen. It helps to create scar tissue and ligaments, and promotes skin repair.

Vitamin C is also an antioxidant that slows the rate of free-radical damage that affects collagen and causes skin dryness, fine lines and wrinkles.

Include plenty of fresh fruit and raw capsicum for vitamin C and, if supplementing, choose a non-acidic form such as Ester C.

Folic acid and Vitamin B12 play a vital role in DNA synthesis and repair and help to heal and repair damaged skin and reduce hyper-pigmentation. Green leafy veges are a great source of folic acid and miso, egg yolk and meats are a source of B12.

Limit sugar, dairy products and wheat products in the diet, as they can contribute to inflammation in the body and congestion in the skin. Instead opt for unprocessed whole foods.

Hydration is critical for healthy skin, so water is vital. A good way to work out how much your body needs is to multiply your body weight in kilograms by 35ml.

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

For example, a 75kg person needs 2625ml of water a day, about 10 cups. Herbal teas, coconut water and water can all contribute towards this amount.

Super skinfood smoothie

Serves 1

¼ cup coconut water
1 fresh date, stone removed
3 Tbsp frozen mixed berries
½ avocado
2 Tbsp cacao powder
2 Tbsp ground chia seeds
½ cup baby spinach leaves

Blend until smooth and enjoy.




Sep 05

Eating well during Pregnancy

It really is a miracle that any of us exist when you look into the finer details of how conception comes about and how many factors are crucial to dictate the outcome, Naturopath Deanna Copland writes.

Article Published in Otago Daily Times

September 2016


Deanna Copland.

Statistically, about half of modern pregnancies are unplanned. For others, it has been a long and often painful and/or costly journey.

A wedding usually takes one year of preparation for one day of perfection; ideally a preconception programme through a naturopath would also be a top priority to have both mother and father in their optimal health states prior to conception to ensure the healthiest baby possible.

For a lot of women, the poorly named “morning” sickness, which can last all day, can be debilitating.  This is due to the increased levels of progesterone and oestrogen circulating through the liver.

Some find sipping ginger tea beneficial. You can buy fresh ginger root and either grate about tsp into a cup of hot water to drink hot or cold, or you can get pre-made ginger herbal teas.

Small snacks more often rather than sitting down to a main meal can also be worthwhile.

Snacks, such as rice crackers with avocado, yoghurt with fresh fruit, a mixture of raw nuts, seeds and some dark chocolate or a baked potato with sour cream and cheese, might settle the nausea.  Smaller snacks are easier to digest and help to keep blood sugar levels even throughout the day.

Listen to your body. Taking a nap during the day (where possible) is very beneficial if your sleep is interrupted at night.

During your first trimester you can feel overwhelmingly tired (thanks  to the sedative effects of high progesterone levels), so going to bed earlier and prioritising sleep is important.

Stress during pregnancy has been linked to pre-term birth and low birthweight, and those can cause developmental delays and learning disabilities.

Obviously, the demands of work, home, and other children don’t come to a halt just because you’re pregnant so use support networks, where possible.

Managing stress using breathing techniques and meditation, yoga, eating nutritious wholefoods and regular pregnancy massage can all be helpful.

Grainy toast and avocado topped with an egg. Photo: Getty Images

Grainy toast and avocado topped with an egg. Photo: Getty Images

Vitamin D deficiency is common in pregnant women and in breast-fed infants. Adverse health outcomes such as premature births, low birthweight, poor postnatal growth, bone fragility, and increased incidence of autoimmune diseases have been linked to low vitamin D levels during pregnancy and infancy.

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin naturally derived from UVB waves from the sun.

Dietary sources are limited and include oily fish, such as salmon and sardines, and egg yolks so it is usually included in pregnancy multisupplements.

Stretch marks can be due to a zinc mineral deficiency; some food sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds and beef. Adequate levels of zinc present in the body also reduce the perineum tearing during birth.

Locally-made Artemis Mother and Baby Massage Oil can be applied directly to the growing belly each day also to prevent stretching and this is a superior option over petroleum-based synthetic vitamin E oils.

Stay active. If you already have a training programme pre-pregnancy, maintain it with the guidance of your healthcare professional.

Otherwise, staying active with gentle exercise such as walking, swimming and yoga can help to boost your mood, promote good sleep and improve your circulation.

Gaining too much weight during pregnancy increases the likelihood of delivering early, developing pre-eclampsia (which can also lead to prematurity) and gestational diabetes.

Poor maternal nutrition and too much weight gain can also lead to weight issues in the baby which can last throughout its life.

Many women put on much more weight than recommended because they overestimate how many extra calories they need.

An additional 1200kJ a day, about what you get from 1 slice of grainy toast with  avocado, 1 egg and a small dollop of pesto (see below)  is all you need to fuel your baby’s growth.

By looking after yourself with plenty of rest, healthy nutrition and regular exercise, pregnancy can be an enjoyable experience.

The advice contained in this column is not intended to be a substitute for direct, personalised advice from a health professional.

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Pumpkin seed pesto


1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup raw cashews
¼ cup water
5 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
¼ tsp mineral sea salt
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juicerind of one lemon
3 cloves garlic
1 cup fresh herbs, such as basil or coriander or baby spinach leaf


Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until the mixture forms a coarse paste and then season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cover and chill until ready to use. The greens in this recipe are also a good source of folate, which is important in pregnancy.



Aug 05

Appreciating the finer things in life

Camping always draws mixed opinions. It can be the greatest holiday or the worst, Naturopath Deanna Copland writes.

As a child, I did Brownies, Girl Guides and then Duke of Edinburgh so, combined with family holidays with water lapping around the camper van door and a family bout of food poisoning due to some funny chicken nibbles one year, I felt I had met my quota of camping.

Recently, my partner suggested a week away to explore the upper South Island in a caravan. I wasn’t initially enthused about the idea.

Yes, a few rainy days, sand where it shouldn’t be, mosquitoes, a lumpy bed, wet towels, communal showers.

But I’m now reminded that the list of the good things definitely outweighs the bad.

No TV, no mirrors, no alarm clocks, no appointments, time for reading books, sleeping without WiFi, meeting interesting people, plenty of exploring and beach walks, fresh air, finding waterfalls off the beaten track, star-gazing, watching baby seals play and just enjoying being a part of nature and slowing down.

I think communal cooking means you appreciate the food so much more when you are just working with the basics but I did have to try to turn a blind eye to what some other travellers were eating – white bread buttered with mayonnaise and then dipped into a bowl of milk was the breakfast of one man, half a bag of raw carrots was what started another’s day – I switched off after that!

There is a blunt saying, ‘‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail”. I believe that when we can prep food on a Sunday afternoon for the working week, it definitely means we eat better and generally save money on food by having a shopping list and a food plan.

When away it is important to make the best choices we can and most cafes and restaurants do offer healthy choices.

Looking after ourselves consistently supports general wellbeing, mood, energy and healthy relationships so just because we are travelling or life has been too busy doesn’t mean our health needs to be affected.

Maintaining nutrition

It is important to maintain your nutrition when away from home so you have more energy and less illness.

Here are some great options:

• Boiled eggs
• Mixed nuts and seeds
• Fresh fruit
• Tins of salmon or tuna
• Rice cakes with avocado and tomato
• Deli salads
• Cooked chicken from the supermarket
• Pottles of yoghurt
• Baked beans
• Herbal teas
• Carry stainless steel water bottles with you for day trips in the car/while biking



Nov 13

Diabetes Awareness Week

According to statistics published in the NZ Medical Journal in March 2013, 7% of New Zealanders over the age of 15 have diabetes and 18.6% have pre-diabetes type symptoms which typically leads to Type II diabetes.

These are sobering statistics, and the diabetes epidemic has been described by some experts as a ‘silent & smouldering’ fire. Diabetes is internationally regarded as the most rapidly growing yet preventable chronic disease of our time, and health statistics show the number of Kiwis with diabetes has almost doubled in the past 10 years.  Dee is confident in treating this life-threatening condition, keeping abreast of current research into effective therapeutic protocols.

If you have, or think you may have diabetes, phone 03 474 0004 to make an appointment today.

Jun 20

Dunedin Clinic premises

Dee Copland Kinetic HealthAs of July 2014, Dee will be working from Kinetic Health in Dunedin.  Business will be as usual however she will be part of a professional team of people who strive to offer the best possible healthcare for their clients.  The new address will be Ground floor, 205 Princes Street (the original BNZ building), in the exchange area of Dunedin.  The Bank of New Zealand Building was designed and constructed over the period 1877-1883 and it has been restored beautifully into a clean, professional multi-modality clinic. http://kinetichealth.co.nz

Apr 14

Follow Dee on Instagram and Pinterest

For delicious, healthy food ideas and recipes, follow Dee –






Dee Copland Naturopath & Nutritionist






Apr 14

Dee’s daily health advice on The Breeze 98.2FM

Each weekday morning at 6.50am and 9.20am, Dee shares a different health tip with Damian and Sonia on The Breeze (98.2FM Otago).  These relate to all areas of health  including healthy eating tips and tricks, good lifestyle habits such as how to get the best quality sleep, uses for essential oils around the home, natural cleaning tips etc to keep you and your family on the right track.

Older posts «

Switch to mobile version