In partnership with Dose & Co
Wellness is a word that is thrown around - a lot.
And often, it's used to hone in on singular aspects - ignoring the rest.
But wellness is, by design, a holistic approach - or else we'd still be using the term "health". Too often the products, images and practices we're shown ignore fundamental aspects of what it means to be "well".
Wellness is not fitness, it's not mental health, it's not a balanced diet, it's not relaxation or good skincare. It's in fact all of these things together - and more.
Certainly, one big part of the wellness equation that is often ignored is your inner health. While we were all busy looking for ways to help us look and appear our best, so many of us ignore what we need to do to feel our best. We hear plenty about clear skin and mindfulness, but you don't tend to hear much about building healthy bones, aiding connective tissue and supporting your joints. These are the building blocks that you can improve now that will support your overall wellness in the future.
Libby Matthews is a both a qualified nutritionist and a qualified naturopath. And it was her own inner health journey that inspired to take action.
"After I had my daughter I suffered from extreme post-partum hair loss and tried almost everything to help my hair grow," she says.
But after the topical solutions didn't offer the solve she was hoping for, she decided to look at her inner health.
"The one supplement that worked was collagen powder."
Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the human body. You've probably heard about collagen supplements before: they're often marketed as supplement for healthy, glowing skin. Which is true, collagen has amazing benefits for the skin.
But collagen is also the major component of connective tissues that makes up tendons, muscles and even bones. So it's not just a supplement for skin, it's one that supports the health of your whole body.
So Libby created Dose & Co, a brand that offers clean, accessible collagen products that support a holistic approach to inner health.
"Many of the collagen powders on the market were full of fillers, artificial flavours and colours and sugars and I felt that went against what they were claiming.
"After studying nutrition and naturopathy I was inspired to create my own range of supplements using premium ingredients," she says.
To get technical for a moment, collagen is made from amino acid chains including glycine and arginine that act as building blocks in the body - this to helps support our hair, skin, nails, joints, muscles, ligaments and bones.
Collagen can help those experiencing hair loss, support stronger nails, improve gut health, improve joint and ligament health. It can even help with lost bone density, which is often a problem in old age and a side-effect of those taking asthma medication.
Libby says that collagen also offers support for chronic skin conditions. "Some people have had eczema or psoriasis and tried every product including antibiotics and steroid creams to help with it, after using our collagen they notice results within a week," she says.
Wellness should be accessible and eco-friendly
The other troubling piece that Libby felt was missing from the wellness puzzle is access. Wellness is not a concept that should be exclusive to one group. Everyone should be able to access the tools they need to support their inner health.
"The majority of the collagen brands on the market are incredibly expensive which means only a small percentage of people can afford them."
This is not a new problem. There is overwhelming evidence that the wellness industry is exclusive, making it hard for some to reach the ultimate goal of feeling "well".
And too often these products are sold with over-processed packaging and individually-wrapped doses. It's not eco-friendly and for many people (including this writer), environmentally-friendly choices are a big part of the wellness puzzle too. So Dose & Co, ditched the extra packaging and plastic. Libby chose simple, paper recyclable canisters - even the packaging tape made from paper rather than plastics.
“It didn't feel right to put these premium formulations in a plastic tub,” says Libby. “Eliminating plastics was paramount.”
Dose & Co's ethos to offer choices and alternatives. It's about effortless, everyday self-care. It's about nourishing from the inside out. It's about allowing everyone access what they need to feel "well", now and in the future.
"Collagen is an incredible supplement and I think it’s important that it's sold at an affordable price so everyone can reap the benefits."
Dose & Co is sold online at the Dose & Co website and at Coles supermarkets across Australia.