Our Philosophy

Amongst 1000s of choices of programs, methods and philosophies the Acacia Health Retreat desires to empower you with tools and principles that will help you reach your personal best health.

We believe in all-round holistic health physical, mental, social and spiritual. 

We treat the whole person. By making small incremental changes in lifestyle and thinking, we assist people in making choices that can drastically change their lives! Imagine having renewed energy and happiness for you to enjoy with your family!

Furthermore, we believe that our whole-person approach is fully in harmony with government objectives:


"Mental health and wellbeing is a basic human right....Person centred design principles require a holistic and inclusive approach, focused on the mental, physical, social and emotional wellbeing of the individual, families, and the community more broadly...." https://equallywell.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Equally-Well-Consensus-Statement.pdf  An Australian Government Consensus document

"Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. The enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition." http://www.who.int/about/mission/en/   World Health Organisation



Physical- We have an amazing body, created with muscles and organs and a mind that requires good nourishment.  Feeling good is in fact not hard to do, but it is a result of wise choices.

Recent statistics show that only 7% of Australias eat the recommended amount of vegetables.1

We help to teach how to eat more plants, and promote and teach a balanced vegan diet. This is in accord with the latest scientific evidence of what our bodies need (see for example the largest epidemiological study ever conducted in the book: "The China Study"), it is also sustainable for the planet, for our animal friends' welfare, and for your wallet. You wont have to work so hard! Even gym owners from Australias fattest town (Mackay) are recognising that the solution to the obesity epidemic is learning how to cook healthy, rather than simply more time at the gym.2

We utilise principles from the well-known NEWSTART® program at the WEIMAR institute of health in California. 

The NEWSTART Program is a physician monitored, scientifically researched lifestyle change program based on eight fundamental principles proven to help you achieve optimum health: Nutrition, Exercise, Water, Sunlight, Temperance, Air, Rest and Trust. This health recovery program is de- signed to prevent and reverse disease through natural methods.

We also utilise principles from the world-famous CHIP® Program, Complete Health Improvement Program, which is normally a 30-day program. We will help you get started, with our 7 day program and recommend that you link together with a 30 day CHIP course near you. (See video below and www.chiphealth.com)  We recommend that you also involve your own doctor in your journey.

For those seeking help with diabetes type 2 we utilize the Reverse Diabetes program of Dr Neil T Barnard (http://www.pcrm.org/media/experts/neal-barnard-diabetes-book) and Diabetes Undone program of Dr Wes Youngberg.

For quitting smoking, we utilize the Breathe Free program formerly known as the 5-day plan to quit smoking. (https://www.breathefree2.com/)

We were made to move.  We help you to get into a sustainable exercise plan, which benefits the circulation, thinking clarity, better muscle tone and weight loss. An added benefit is the positive endorphins that your body produces which make you happy!   The application of contrast hot and cold water and massage have also been shown to boost the circulation, and we hope that you will learn how to do these simple remedies yourself at home.  We cater to all people, despite their physical ability, and can do gentle or vigorous exercise depending on your goals and abilities.

"Physical inactivity is the second greatest contributor, behind tobacco smoking, to the cancer burden in Australia....56% of Australian adults are either inactive or have low levels of physical activity - that is more than 9.5 million adults!" Australia’s Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines 

The Acacia Health Retreat utilises principles from the world-famous and successful CHIP program.


Mental - Mental performance is vital for everyone.  We believe that peak performance requires a multifactorial approach. We explain how to improve your thoughts which will impact your sleep, diet, exercise and any problems with addictions and negative thinking.  We will explain how to develop positive thoughts through positive classical music therapy and contemplating noble, mentally challenging reading material, breathing, hydration and social support.  We help you with strategies to setting and reaching your goals.

According to the Australian government "Approximately 17.2 per cent or 3.8 million Australians are estimated to be affected by mental illness in any one year ...Anxiety disorders and depression are the most common disorders, affecting approximately 9 per cent and 7 per cent, respectively, of the adult population each year. Collectively referred to as ‘high prevalence’ illnesses, these disorders include diverse conditions (for example, post traumatic stress disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, obsessive compulsive disorder and depression), with differing treatment requirements and outcomes. It is these disorders, in mild to moderate severity, that the evidence shows can be effectively treated through online programs." E-mental health strategy of Australia 2012. 3

We also believe that mild to moderate anxiety and depression can be treated, but in contrast to the Australian government we believe that the best approach is face-to-face instead on online, especially in a compassionate residential program.  We utilise strategies from the incredibly successful Depression Recovery program of Dr Neil Nedley and  Dr Tibitts "Forgive to Live" book, with a focus on how to deal with bitterness, forgiveness and common errors of thinking.  Massage and Hydrotherapy are also great at relieving stress and tension and promoting circulation, as well as in promoting health so that mental issues can be dealt with.  Non-sexual physical touch through massage and a caring family environment, develops your brain and boosts your immune system, which we need more than ever in this digital age.4

Social- Isolation and loneliness are affecting our mental health.  More and more people are living alone. We strongly recommend you come with a friend or spouse to experience lasting growth together.  Don't have a friend who wants to share with? Call us and maybe there is another person who feels exactly the same!  Our sessions are done in small groups of maximum 7 clients at a time, so that the benefits of a group making positive lifestyle decisions can be experienced together. We go through stategies to boost your social health. 5


Spiritual-"Religious and spiritual struggles -- conflicts with God or religious people, tough questions about faith, morality, and the meaning of life -- these are often taboo topics, and the temptation to push them away is strong. People who more fully embrace these struggles with fundamental beliefs and values report better mental health than those who don't." 6

We hope to help discover your spiritual identity, improve your link to your Creator, who is the Source of freedom, peace, creation, creativity and joy. We believe in prayer, active meditation and trust in a Higher Power to solve problems and bring about inner and external harmony. We try to answer the tough questions, and have spiritual counsellors available that can help with resolving these deeper questions.  We are non-disciminatory and welcome people of all spiritual persuasions.  We have found this area to be the one that helps people the most in dealing with internal conflict, forgiveness, healing and peace of mind. We will help you find new energy and balance in your life!


Find out more about our program here..

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1. https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/about-us/what-we-do/heart-disease-in-australia/fruit-and-vegetable-consumption-statistics

2. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-29/mackay-tops-list-of-queenslands-heaviest-adults/9370172

3. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/7C7B0BFEB985D0EBCA257BF0001BB0A6/$File/emstrat.pdf

4. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/wired-success/201503/8-reasons-why-we-need-human-touch-more-ever

5. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/12/well/live/having-friends-is-good-for-you.html

6. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/12/161205111017.htm

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