Sunday, November 14, 2010

Better, Naturally...

I reckon any book with a glowing endorsement from Hugh Jackman on the cover is off to a cracking start.

A few months ago I was sent such a book: ‘Naturally Better’ by Kristen Morrison. Kristen is a mum of three, creative type, successful fashion designer and naturopathic powerhouse. The book came to be after her third child, a sunny-faced boy named Gryffin, was born with the extra chromosome causing Down syndrome. 

Not the type to take this diagnosis lying down, Kristen decided to attempt ‘genetic change’ on behalf of her son – and the results were remarkable.

How on earth did a mum of three find the time to research, document, and write 350-odd pages while maintaining Gryff’s treatment program and looking after the family? When we are up against the wall and asked to fight on behalf our children, we do it without thinking.

So, back to ‘making genetic change’ – as said by an Occupational Therapist friend of the author’s, when she heard what they had been up to. It’s brave, to challenge a diagnosed condition and refuse to accept the developmental milestones given to her by paediatricians, nurses and organisations. 

Throughout the book we see, via the Therapy diary and pages of colour photographs, the intense therapies - from cocktails of vitamins and baby yoga to Osteopathy and Naturopathy - that have been of huge benefit to the author’s gorgeous son.

I’ve no doubt this is a hugely popular read for any parents of young children with Down syndrome, Autism, ADHD or Cerebral palsy – people looking for a better way to treat their child’s condition and, I might say, fight the diagnosis. But also for new mums and dads everywhere, there were gems of information that informs us on how we can best be parents to our bright kids.

What I loved about this book was Kristen’s passion for her family, the enthusiasm with which she threw herself into the research and Gryff’s program, and her encyclopaedic knowledge as a result of their experience. I would definitely read another book, written as a way of opening more minds (like mine) to the reasoning behind, ways of and benefits to living better, naturally.

In the time it has taken me to read and review this book, Kristen has also established the ‘Grow Foundation, for Naturally Better Kids’ to raise funds for kids with neurological challenges. 

When it was launched on 13 November, Kristen said:

“In the year since my book was published, the numbers of parents who have come to me with success stories from having done similar work with their own children is wonderful. 

"It takes considerable parent effort to achieve these incredible results, and because these
are at-home therapy programs run by parents for their own kids, the families often fall between chairs when it comes to funding.”

If you’d like to know more about the Grow Foundation or buy a copy of 'Naturally Better', head to their Facebook page or check out their website at

Oh, and... you can find me on Twitter or 'Facebook.

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