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Rainbow crudite

  1. Getting the ratio of carb’s, fats and proteins right is essential for muscle building and thus fat burn. Eating more will probably help you to weigh less and get leaner! Other nutrients such as Magnesium, Zinc, Calcium, Vitamin A, D, E and Iron are also essential for body repair, growth and healing. Its not just calories in and out.
  1. Snacks to keep our hunger at bay for longer. This helps balance blood sugar levels so less chance you’ll grab those biscuits- empty calories. Increase your energy and happiness levels;  food really does affect mood. Make sure you eat nutrient dense whole food and cut down on the processed foods.
  1. Use Kefir as a natural probiotic and prebiotic (the food that feeds the good bacteria) to improve digestion and uptake of key nutrients. This makes your body more efficient and makes the most of the food you do eat. Also will boost your immune system, help balance blood sugar, improve skin  and hair health and help repair the digestive system which may reduce allergies and IBS symptoms.
  1. Find out what foods affect your body’s hormonal balance necessary for healthy body shape (i.e. excess weight in middle and man boobs!). Balancing stress levels as well as blood sugar levels can help to adjust oestrogen and thyroid hormone levels in the body.
  1. Use nutrition to support and build your immune system so the change of seasons doesn’t affect your get up and go. Eating a plate full of (natural!) colour will pack your body full of nutrients such as anti-oxidants, vitamin C, Iron and zinc; all essential to the immune system. Also source out some local or Raw honey.

ginger-tea-ginger

Ginger, Lemon and Honey tea

green drink

How to make a smoothie/green drink

Energy Balls

Balls of Energy

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Honey and onion elixir

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Naturopath’s First Aid Kit

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  1. Every part of the coconut can be used to nourish and support the body. Known as the ‘Tree of Life’ you can drink the water, eat the flesh and use the shell for all sorts of things.
  1. They are always in season and grow all year round. They are easy and cheap to buy. Once you know how they are also easy to open. Young meat is jelly like and really sweet and more mature meat is whiter, firmer and less sweet. You can make your own coconut water, kefir, milk, cream, yoghurt , butter and vinegar very easily.
  1. Coconut can be eaten and the water drunk during pregnancy. Both are  repudiated to nourish mother and baby and may help with a ‘quick delivery’. The oil when rubbed into the skin can help prevent and heal stretch marks. It can also be applied direct to nipples to soothe chafing and heal wounds whilst breastfeeding. The oil is also a safe and effective sunscreen for children and adults alike.
  1. When dehydrated in the hot summer months coconut water can help. Containing all the necessary electrolytes it can help get you back to balance. Coconut water also contains antimicrobial properties so is also great when suffering from bacterial imbalance (runny tummy!) and in the re-hydration afterwards. The sugar and nectar from the flowers is also full of necessary nutrients to process the sugar (improving blood sugar levels and create energy.
  1. Coconuts have been seen to help a diverse range of conditions, mostly due to their Medium Chain fatty acids. They have a positive effect on the body as they are easily absorbed, have anti-microbial properties, can boost metabolism , enhance thyroid activity, reduces pain and swelling, improve digestion, boost immune system and improve skin, hair teeth and nails. Is there anything a coconut can’t help? (Coconut Cures- Bruce Fife)

Coconut Recipes;

20121113-154836.jpgA bounty of Coconut

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Almond and Coconut Flour  Kefir pancakes

green drink

I use coconut water/ kefir for all my green drinks

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Coconut and Carrot seed oil natural Sunscreen

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The sun is back here in Hong Kong, and I hear it is coming out where you are too. I love the sun and I rarely apply sun tan lotion as I have a healthy respect for it. I certainly do not use a product full of chemicals and petrochemicals (here) If I am going to be lying out in it- rare as i mostly prefer at least the top half of me to be in the shade- I will apply sunscreen (a natural one- naturally!) otherwise I abide to these 5 ways to keep myself and my kiddies burn free and Vit D rich.

1. Sunscreen– I like to use a mix of carrier oils with aromatherapy as my sun cream. Carrot and Raspberry seed oil having the highest SPF (sun protecting factor). I have quite olive skin that seems to soak up the sun, but my son is quite pale (and not 1 yet) so I am more vigilant with him. My daughter has the same skin as me. Our general rule is 10-20 mins in the sun without any barriers to soak up the vitamin D. Never Ever burn. If you feel yourself burning apply straight away (and you should seek the shade or wear a layer). The same mix of oils is also my after-sun  in the bath for the kids and slapped on for us. the oils I use are also anti-bug ones so it is an all in one product. Perfect for taking out with you and taking on holiday! This is a great link to what oils have what SPF (http://www.naturaltherapypages.com.au/article/carrier_oils_and_spf).

2. Cover up– hats long sleeves etc. But watch the sunglasses, Vitamin D is also produced through the Iris and by constantly wearing sunglasses you are missing that vital gateway to healthy Vitamin D levels. Limit your time in the sun– Its a no brainer that keeping out of the sun at the hottest points (recent studies are saying 10am-4pm) but then again that’s almost the whole day! So dipping in and out (and not just of the pool) for example go in for lunch and yes a siesta (another luxury that is far off in the future for me!) and then enjoy it again. There is nothing worse than a sun hangover- you can always have too much of a good thing!

3. Shade seeking– Its cooler in the shade but beware you can still burn so be aware of how you are feeling (and if you are going to go to sleep on your lounger- a luxury I will have to wait for a while to indulge in again- make sure you have applied or get someone to apply some cover for you ) NEVER EVER Burn! Be especially careful at the beach or where there is a lovely breeze as you may not feel that burn.

4. Keep hydrated– Coconut water is brilliant for this- it replaces all your electrolytes and is so delicious in the sunshine. Of course beware of drinking alcohol (even in the coconut water!) and ensure you maintain your water intake. That groggy  feeling after a day in the sun is generally dehydration. A good soak in the bath is a good way to rehydrate (and with the oils of course)

5. Know what to do after a day in the sun– Don’t forget natures wonder product- Aloe Vera. It is not a coincidence that it thrives in hot desert like conditions! Break it open and apply the cooling gel straight away or after a shower. If you do burn a nice hot shower or bath is the way forward (not a cold one!), Aloe Vera and coconut oil with some Lavender and Calendula tincture will do wonders. Calendula and Camomile tea or essential oils and tinctures with lavender are also good at reducing the inflammation burns produce and calming and encouraging new skin growth. Re-hydrating and ensuring plenty of rest afterwards will allow you to enjoy the sun day after day (which is what we hopefully have to look forward to till December now!)

Enjoy!!! But be Safe!

PS Sunscreen recipe to follow (includes carrot seed oil, wheatgerm oil, avocado and coconut oil- Lavender, Camomile, Geranium and either Lemongrass, Neroli, Frankinsence or Grapefruit essential oils depending on my mood!)

5 Reasons To Shop Locally:

In season;  Chinese Kale, Cabbage, pea shoots, lettuce, carrots, spinach, cucumber, watercress, radish, broccoli

1. Foods in season generally have the nutrients in them to support the body’s needs at the time, thus boosting the immune system. Eating local honey can help reduce hay fever and asthma. Try the locally produced Honey and visit where they make it in Shatin at Wing Wo Bee Farm.

2. Indigenous varieties are normally hardier to the local environment and so less need   for interference (ie pesticides). Also you eliminate the environmental damage caused by shipping foods thousands of miles (food miles); for example organic milk at Hong Ning Dairy production is limited to 6000 bottles a day keeping it only for locals.

3.Taste Better. Picked when ripe and ready so given the right amount of time to develop flavour by soaking up the soil’s nutrients for longer. Eating foods fresh and unprocessed can have huge health benefits

4.Cheaper. More abundant easier to grow in season. Less travel means no increase to price.

5. More convenient.  Not only do most of the farms deliver to you, wet markets are often closer than your normal supermarket. Pick up a guide to wet markets that include descriptions of the local produce available at your local district office. It’s fun to discover new foods and search for ways of cooking them for our families. Also its more likely your food dollar goes directly to the farmer thus supporting the local community and promoting more investment into a greener local area.

Try a green smoothie to use your local veg especially the Chinese Kale and watercress.

Detoxing has become a January Trend. However your body will deal up to 4000 substances on a daily basis regardless of what month it is! Stress produces toxins, eating, drinking and breathing in our polluted air alone creates products natural and unnatural that the body’s detoxification pathways have to deal with. Here are some ways to help support your body and reduce the toxic load on a daily basis.  Much gentler and easier to do; thereby helping you towards a healthier 2013.

    1. Every morning, begin the day with hot water and the juice of a lemon + a pinch of cayenne pepper. This is cleansing and alkalinizing, and the cayenne boosts metabolism/burns fat. It stimulates gastric juices and wakes you up ready to start the day. Water is absolutely essential to the cleansing process. So cutting down on caffeine and alcohol and increasing water will really help support the body.
    2.  Epsom salt baths. Remove toxins & the magnesium will help you sleep. 2 handfuls of the Epsom salts in the bath can have a big effect. Magnesium can also help to relieve constipation. Going at least once a day is vital to remove toxins and prevent them from recirculation in the body.
    3. Make sure you are getting liver friendly foods: whole eggs, leafy greens (kale, chard, collards, beet greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens), artichoke, beetroot, carrots, avocados, broccoli, cauliflower, legumes on a daily basis. Try a green smoothie.
    4. Exercise will make you sweat. Sweating removes toxins from the body. Most heavy metals are stored in fat reserves- remove the fat cells and remove the toxins. Moving your body (from walking, dancing, running, yoga,) everyday for at least 20 mins will make a big difference see here, here, and here for inspiration! Remember if you are Pre or Post Natal consult someone before exercising- see here.
    5. Fibre then will pull the toxins out of the body. Increasing your raw fruit and veg will automatically increase fibre intake as will adding flax seeds, psyillum husk, oats, chia seeds to your daily diet in salads or breakfast. See Chia Porridge and Almond and Flax Crackers

 


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Bath Scrub and soak

Can be used on dry skin standing in the shower without water. Scrub all over your body in a circular motion towards the heart, and then just shower off or- can be thrown straight in the bath for a wonderful soak. You can also use any scent you like. (For a bigger batch just multiply each value)

1 cup Epsom salts, 1cup of sea salt
Enough olive and sweet almond oil to bind them (maybe 1/2 cup)
Essential oils- I used vanilla, cinnamon, ylang ylang and lavender. (can also use chamomile, Rose, Frankincense, Juniper berry, Marjoram, Clary sage- If you are pregnant please check which scents are safe to use first, best to stick to lavender or scentless) Mix and I store them in ziplock bags I recycle but  glass jars would look nicer in the bathroom- jam jars would work just as well too!!

Chia PorridgeGood way to add fibre and essential fats to your diet. Also help with hydration levels

Rainbow meditation– how to stop and breathe a little every day!

Heres a diagram on how your body detox’s to help you understand the amazing process your body does Every Single Day!

liver processes Liver-detox-chart

Introducing my new section- 5 ways to… I will cover many areas with some information of how why and what to do to enhance and support your body and your life! Every 4 weeks I will change the subject and every week I will add another recipe to the topic! Let me know if there is anything in particular you want covered.