Children's Health

It all starts with the gut ...

The gut is the font of immunity

One of the great pleasures of my work is meeting children and helping them through their health challenges. Over the 25 years I've been in practice, the vast majority come to me with chronic coughs, colds, eczema, asthma, allergies and tummy troubles, but also varying degrees of ADHD and ASD. These conditions were not a problem when I was growing up in the late 1960s/early 1970s. Something has definitely changed to create such widespread chronic illness in children. In almost all of my child patients' medical history is a disturbance in gut health, most often from frequent antibiotics, inhalers or steroids but also other interventions, all of which play a part in setting up these chronic health conditions.

Just one course of antibiotics wipes out the entire microbiome - the font of our immunity - leaving your little ones more susceptible to chronic health conditions. There is also a pattern of unresolved or suppressed fevers/acute episodes and the widespread use of antibiotics and OTC preparations has much to answer for. These interventions act like sticky plasters, treating the symptoms only, as opposed to the root cause, effectively shooting the messenger, every time. In contrast homeopaths view symptoms as messengers from the immune system that it needs help and match those symptoms with a gentle remedy to resolve the obstacle to health. Working with the body.

The Plan B approach is an unique blend of homeopathy, the 5 Elements (TCM) and natural nutrition acquired over the 25 years I've been working as a homeopath. This holistic approach helps to restore gut health, harmonise the adrenals as well as boosting natural immunity.

Isn't it time to do it differently?

Plan B Natural Health. Because Plan A doesn't always work.

Question: What do all the following have in common?

Answer: Poor gut health.

And why it's time to do it differently.

The gut & brain connection

Did you know that:

  • the brain has 100bn nerve cells, and your gut has 500mn nerve cells?
  • more than 75% of the immune system is based in the gut?
  • the brain spends 90% of its time monitoring gut health
  • the gut is the largest producer of the sleep hormone Melatonin?

Traditional Chinese Medicine made the connection between the gut and mind over 1000 years ago. It's name for the gut is the second brain. Fast forward to the late 19th/early 20th century, when some profoundly healing remedies were added to the homeopathic toolbox by leading gastroenterologist Dr Edward Bach (of Rescue Remedy fame). It is these remedies that homeopaths use almost routinely today to safely and effectively restore the microbiome, boost natural immunity, improve mental health, sleep and neurological function. These remedies act like prebiotics - laying strong foundations so that probiotics can do their job to establish healthy and diverse gut flora.


There is much that can be done for children with ADHD by simply improving gut health. There is often a history of repeat medication and poor diet which further undermines the microbiome. Did you know that just one course of antibiotics wipes out the entire microbiome?

A catch-22 scenario is set up: poor gut health leads to cravings for 'beige foods', carbs, sugar, sweeteners and energy drinks - all the things to stimulate their exhausted adrenals. The body craves foods to provide the next energy hit! This is why gaming is such a big factor with these children, because it stimulates their exhausted adrenals, but it is a maintaining cause.

Adrenal fatigue undermines immunity, so it is not to be normalised and taken lightly, and the medication can bring serious adverse effects. A large part of my work for children with ADHD is to restore gut and adrenal health, which really helps to bring calm, improve focus and concentration. I also include general detox remedies, supplements and dietary tips to strengthen their constitution and give them a better start in life.

Allergies, Asthma & Eczema

Each of these conditions starts in the gut.

Allergies are the result of raised levels of the hormone histamine, which is created in the gut. Levels are kept in check by a diverse and healthy microbiome. When the gut is undermined, histamine levels rise and create the inflammatory response - a state of 'red alert' originating in the adrenals, which produces stress hormones to deal with the perceived danger. The more undermined the gut is, the more hypervigilant the inflammatory response is, i.e. anaphylaxis.

Asthma and eczema are often the result of suppressed and unresolved acute episodes (fever, cough, cold). Antibiotics and steroids thwart the immune response, and drive the condition inside. Eczema is often the first port of call for an unresolved acute, because the gut and skin are connected in Traditional Chinese Medicine. If we continue to suppress, the original acute may go further into the body, most often the lungs or joints. Can you begin to see how repeat medication is the sticky plaster effect?


Children with ASD are increasingly regular visitors to my practice. As ever, each child is unique, as are their symptoms.

ASD is not an illness, but rather a developmental disability that affects the way the brain is wired. It therefore affects communication, interaction, and presents as restricted or repetitive behaviours and OCD tendencies. Associated anxiety or depression are common, and sleep is often disturbed. Although some children are assessed as 'high functioning', they are often slower to achieve milestones and skills after diagnosis, and in some cases they can lose previously acquired skills, yet are often extremely advanced in other ways. Motor skills can be affected (dyspraxia) but, almost always, gut health is disturbed.

The core of my work with these children is to improve gut health, because the gut and mind are inextricably linked. When we heal the gut, any number of changes can follow to include, but not limited to, verbal and visual communication, less sensory sensitivity, listening skills, coordination, developmental milestones, improved mental health, sleep and natural immunity.

Coughs, colds & tummy troubles

Did you know that just one course of antibiotics wipes out the entire microbiome ('good & bad' gut bacteria).

'Antibiotics' translates as 'anti-life'. They do what it says on the box.

While I'm not advocating we stop using antibiotics - they can be life saving - GPs know that they should not be over-prescribing. And they should certainly not be prescribing anti-biotics for viral conditions! But we know they sometimes do, so they become increasingly less effective. The problem is, conventional medicine does not have that many alternative options.

The BIG problem is that microbiome is the seat of our immunity, so no wonder children are never without coughs, colds and tummy troubles! i have lost count of how many children under 5 who have had several courses of antibiotics per year.

Here at Plan B I routinely use specialist gut remedies to restore the microbiome and gut health, to help resolve the chronic coughs, colds, catarrh and tummy troubles.

ENT problems

I write about this from personal experience. Tonsillitis was part of my childhood, and each time the doctor came out - in the days of home visits! - they said I had to live with it. The repeat antibiotics became more regular around puberty. I recall the very high and dry fevers, the painful throat, the aching limbs and fatigue, delirium and strange visions while I worked my way through gallons of Robinson's Lemon Barley drink! Some of you may recognise that homeopathic Belladonna was my remedy!

The repeat antibiotics rendered my microbiome useless by the time I hit my teens, so I had to have my tonsils out. Part of my primary immune system gone. And guess what? The inflammation shifted to my ears - the same pattern - which continued for 10 years, until the penny dropped. The drugs weren't working! I asked the GP if there was anything else he could do. He said no, but recommended Homeopathy, since when I haven't looked back, and that was nearly 30 years ago!

Here at Plan B I routinely use specialist gut remedies to restore the microbiome and gut health, to help resolve the chronic ENT problems.

Shooting the messenger

Imagine that your body knows exactly what it's doing, that it works for you 24/7, 365 days per year.; that it knows how to heal itself with very little help from us.

What if:

  • symptoms were messengers from your immune system rather than the problem itself?
  • each acute illness, e.g. flu, coughs, colds, fevers, digestive problems, was the body's chosen path to wellness, rather than being the problem itself?
  • childhood illnesses were the body's attempt to clear the ancestral rucksack of inherited traits and weaknesses?

Why would you shoot the messenger?

Imagine how the body perceives the silencing of it's symptoms with suppressive medication. Because that's what conventional meds do - shoot the messenger. Repeated or long term medication sledgehammers it into silence, paving the way for chronic, underlying health conditions (which are actually unresolved acute episodes).

Each time we shoot the messenger, the body becomes more toxic, leaving less space for cleansing (acute episodes). Repeated over a lifetime, is it any wonder that chronic illness are the true pandemic of our times?

It's time to do it differently.