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Mango Salsa

Sensing a theme! With a box of 12 Mangoes I have been inspired!

Mango

 

We love our lentil burgers and they are a great easy and quick meal. To liven them up I decided team them with a Mango Salsa, Avocado Guacamole and Sweet Potato Fries (baked in the oven in a fry shape!) Man did this get wolfed down!

Mango Salsa and Guac

 

Mango Salsa

2 Mangoes

1 small red onion

1 tbs chopped coriander (cilantro)

1tbs chopped parsley

Salt and pepper

juice of half a lime

Dice the mango and throw into a bowl. Season with the salt and pepper. Finely chop the coriander with the parsley and red onion and mix in with the mango. Add the lime juice and stir. With 2 young kids I have opted this to be chilli free- but some nice green chilli’s would go a treat in here!

Avocado Guacamole

2 Avocado’s

1 small red onion

1 tbs chopped coriander

7 cherry tomatoes

2 cloves of garlic

Salt and pepper

juice of half a lime

dash of olive oil

Cube the avocado and place in bowl with the lime juice and dash of olive oil. Roughly chop the onion and tomatoes (i like my guacamole chunky) add to the avocado and season with salt and pepper. finely chop the garlic with the coriander and add to the bowl and mix through.

Mango

My favourite fruit is Mango. Packed with great nutrition like Vitamin C I love their sweet juicy sometimes tangy taste. I really missed the Asian Mangoes when I lived in the UK. Now I have found my supplier from India I am set and am buying them by the box. even though the whole family loves them I wanted to make the most of them being in season right now.

I have read loads of recipes for Raw Jam and it seemed so easy- sugar free and hassle free just 3 ingredients! I love Chia too. It is tough getting my daughter to eat it, she is resisting it even though she sees her brother and I have it every morning. But she has her muesli so I am not complaining! This however is a great way to get her to eat it! On our pancakes, on flatbreads and even in her muesli she is gobbling it up. I am also adding it to my green drinks and Chia and coconut yoghurt for breakfast for my son and I

Mango JamHere it is on my Quinoa Flatbreads

Recipe

2 Ripe Mangoes (flesh)

2 tbs Chia seeds

1 tbs of water.

Depending on how what consistancy (rough or smooth) you like your Jam you can either mash the mango flesh or blitz it in the blender with the water. Add to a jar. Mix in the chia seeds and place in the fridge to ‘set’. I’m not kidding it is as easy as that. I love it. Of course you can do the same with any fruit you like! mix it up a bit- I am going make Pina Colada next with coconut and pinapple and a squeeze of lime, Jackfruit, mixed berry and the cherries and lychee season has begun!!

Every week we have a vegetarian and a fish night. Now that summer is on its way there will also be a raw night. I believe 80/20 ratio fits my families lifestyle completely. 80% of the time we are incredibly healthy- always cook fresh and have a good mix of protein, carbs and fat. the other 20% of the time we have what we want when we want it. I find this helps when we eat out, when the kids are given those foods I dont give them myself by well-meaning others and if you can eat what you want when you want it you are less likely to binge or somehow ‘fail’ oursleves.

In this vein Easter was a little indulgent. There was some rubbish chocolate involved, but there was also some great nutrition there too. I even got my husband a little inspired by raw foods. Since then I thought I would start to get creative with my vegetarian options.

I love salad, craved it in my last pregnancy and would happily eat it every day of the week. My husband is Irish ( he loves his potatos, bread and simple foods). We compromise with meals. Tonight was a big compromise on his part. He ate it but he didnt like it. Thats ok, I enjoyed it and my 10 month old son ate it all up, but my daughter (who is coming up to 3 and a half) decided that she wasn’t having any. Fine too. I explained that there was nothing in there that she didn’t like, and to be fair she tried it. I think we forget how much they absorb and watch. Since my husband was making a fuss- so did she. There was little chance she was going to eat it when she had a model (one she massively looks up too) to copy. Who knows what might have happened if it was just the 3 of us round the table. Think about how many times we say my kids wont eat that, they are fussy eaters. What would happen if we only ever said- lets see what they like and if I am sitting there eating it maybe they might pick up their forks and absorb and watch. 10 times (kid and adult alike) you have to try something before you taste buds adapt. Most of it is all in your head. As long as the taste buds receive sweet, salty, bitter and spicy- they are happy!

Anyway here’s my new fav salad:

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Sprouted Lentil Citrus Slaw and Sprouted Lentil hummus

1 cup of soaked and Sprouted lentils (soak for 12 hours then keep wash lentils morning and night for 2 days while they grow shoots 1-2cm long)

1 large grated carrot

1 Peeled and grated apple (up to here is what my 9 month old son had)

1 cup of finely sliced red cabbage

!/2 Onion finely diced

1/2 tbs finely chopped fresh parsley and mint

1/4 cup of sunflower seeds

Dressing;

juice of half an orange

juice of half a lemon

1/2 tbs Apple cider vinegar

1tbs Olive oil

pinch paprika (had my daughters mix without this ingredient)

Salt and pepper

(whisk together)

Hummus (Whizz all ingredients together in a food processor until reach desired consistancy- add oil and cooking water sparingly)

(3 handfuls of the above lentils)

3 cloves of garlic (roasted-makes the garlic a little sweeter)

1 tbs vegetable cooking water (or stock)

2 tbs olive oil

1 tbs sesame seeds (beware when giving this to infants- can be allergenic. I have had no reaction from my son when they have been previously introduced)

salt and pepper and a little of the above dressing

I am very happy- what do you think?

 

Here is where I got some inspiration for my recipe;

http://deliciouslyorganic.net/lentil-hummus-recipe-grain-free/

http://gnowfglins.com/2010/05/27/3-dishes-from-sprouted-lentils/#

This is my favourite thing to add to my Chia porridge for breakfast. The taste is so vibrant and alive yet still naturally sweet and a great yoghurt tang. I use my dehydrator to incubate it but you could use a yoghut maker or even a bain marie (inside a bowl inside a bowl filled with warm/hot water and cover with a towel! It doesn’t have to be complicated just an even warm temperature for about 12 hours for this yoghurt.

 

1 cup of coconut meat

a drizzle to 1/2 cup coconut water/milk kefir (depending on the wetness of the meat)

Add the meat to a blender or food processor. Add a little kefir to get the yoghurt started. Blend on slow to start with and then on high adding more kefir as necessary until you reach a cream consistency (incidentally this is how I make my coconut cream). Add to your vessels- this makes about 8 portions of yoghurt (with each portion for me and my son being about 3 tbs). I put in my dehydrator at 100 degrees (Fahrenheit- because that is what the dial measures in- normally work in centigrade so its confusing to me) leave for 12 hours! This also means this is a raw yoghurt.

Store in the fridge! Delicious

 

I love coconut. I love making yoghurt, milk and butter from the meat and drinking the water and making Coconut water Kefir. The recipes couldn’t be simpler.

 

Coconut Milk;

I use Young Thai coconuts, they are my favourite taste. Other older meat may need straining and there are several methods of making coconut milk from dried coconut too. In the tropics we have these in abundance in the supermarkets and after using the water and meat they are a bargain. Now I just need some ideas on how to use the husks- I hate waste and live on the 27th floor!

1 1/2 Cups of Coconut water (about the contents of 1 coconut)

1 1/2 Cups of filtered Water

1 cup of coconut meat (normally 2-3 coconuts worth)

I throw all mine in my blender and blend until thick and creamy. No need to strain! This will keep in the fridge for at least a week but it is normally used up way before then!

I have also made Coconut milk Kefir from this also. Just add the milk grains and leave with a muslin cover for 12-24 hours- to taste!

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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

Natural Sunscreen is top of my list of things to take in my bag whilst out and about or on holiday. I make 30 ml bottles so they are easily portable and I can have one in my handbag, nappy bag, beach bag and pool bag!

carrots

There has been a lot of information about carrier oil SPF (Sun Protection Factor) and Carrot seed oil comes out pretty high (source). Beta Carotene and Vitamin E are super at preventing your skin from burning in the sun. Taken orally and applied topically as a natural sunscreen. Carrot seed oil is a powerful antioxidant when cold pressed (source) especially in fat oxidisation- which is really useful when applied to skin because all cells are made of fat and protein. So protecting that is what we want our sunscreen to do. Add that with other Vitamin E oils like Wheat-Germ and Avocado you have a deeply nutritious blend

coconut

Coconuts have been described as the original sunscreen. With a lower SPF factor but many other nutritional benefits when applied topically it is an ideal addition. Over time the coconut oil has been replaced by chemicals. Basically a fat barrier is what the skin needs to protect it- coconut oils Medium chain fatty acids are a perfect fit for this. Plus the anti bacterial and microbial benefits all together you have a match made in heaven!

lavender

on its own I think you have a great product but if you like a smell and to double up as a skin protector/ bug repellent/after sun these essential oils are key.

Lavender is a natural pain reliever, calming, antimicrobial and antiseptic perfect to ease burns and inflammation and balance and cleanse the skin. Gives that comforting herby lavender smell.

Chamomile is also a pain reliever and calming. It is also soothing and relaxing. Gives a warm sweet note too the oil

Geranium is anti-inflammatory and regulating. It is a powerful smell that insects hate but blended with the above give a nice rosy-minty hint to the oil

in the past I have often also added Neroli (very restorative for skin), Frankincense (again to restore and heal skin), lemongrass (protects from bugs) and grapefruit (although not great in the sunscreen it awesome in a bug repellent and aftersun). Please consult a professional Naturopath or Aromatherapist if worried about using essential oils.

Recipe for Natural Sunscreen

In a 30 ml bottle mix the following;

10ml Carrot seed oil

10 ml Coconut oil

5ml Avocado oil

5ml Wheatgerm oil

5-10 drops Lavender essential oil (lesser amount for young children)

5 drops Chamomile (Roman) essential oil

1-2 drops Geranium essential oil

(add some rescue remedy too if you like)

Apply often, safe for all ages (for babies best to use plain oil blend) especially if feeling burning, stay in shade at hottest times of the day or covered. See 5 ways to Stay Sun Safe for more info. Eating foods rich in carotenes (sweet potato, carrots, pumpkin- yellow/orange foods, also spinach and collards) and Vitamin E (avocado, nuts and seeds) will help protect you from the inside. Enjoy the sun but NEVER EVER Burn. 

teeth

I just made my second batch of home-made toothpaste. I started making it because buying fluoride  paraben and other nasty free toothpaste is difficult over here (I bought Aloedent in the UK) and really really expensive. Making your own is easy. I have to say my teeth definitely feel different and I can see my gums improving. I have very fine chips on the back of my two front teeth I was starting to worry about (it was a ‘Hey Big Spender moment swinging a caribou on a string at Drama School- another story!) They were starting to feel very thin- It feels completely different and the best way to describe it is stronger. 3 weeks on and I can hand on heart say I love this tooth paste!

My 3 year old was also spending a lot of time eating and sucking the toothbrush- now she just gets in there and cleans and spits which makes me happier. She also only complains about it to her Dad who also is wary of it- she just sees me get on with it- and there is no alternative which is sometimes a brilliant way to get kids to just get on with it!!

I took my inspiration from these blogs;

http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2012/04/rethinking-oral-health-care-a-homemade-toothpaste-recipe-for-tooth-remineralization.html

http://familysponge.com/health/coconut-oil/homemade-toothpaste-coconut-oil/

and Ramiel Nagal’s book  Cure Tooth Decay

I use;

In a glass Jar

2tbs coconut oil

2tbs calcium and magnesium powder (I use  this)

2tbs baking powder

1tsp salt (I use Pink Himalayas Salt)

8 drops Raspberry Medicine Flowers

10 drops of Mint Medicine Flowers

Mix it all together with a chopstick and put the lid on the jar!

Done and it lasts ages! (beware it is grey!)

Someone I respect as both a person and as a Personal Trainer posted this recently;

“Never ever listen to an overweight person trying to give you nutritional advice…”

It made me so mad for many reasons.

1. What is overweight anyway? By labelling someone as overweight you are saying they are not ideal weight. But who’s ideal? We all know that BMI is a complete waste of time, muscle weighs more than fat. In this instance I assume the person in question would be deemed by some as ‘overweight’. There is so much to take into account, water weight, what time of day is it, have the scales been calibrated and what are they wearing when they are being weighed. All of these factors have absolutely nothing to do with health. I know amazingly healthy people who are ‘so-called’ overweight. However I know more so called ‘ideal’ (read skinny) people who are frightingly unhealthy.

Just google image the word overweight-


overweight
overweight 4overweight 6overwight 5overweight 2

Which of these images is overweight to you? I chose these, amongst the somewhat obvious images that came up- these slightly alarmed me that they had been flagged with that tag. Are we so bland that we want everything and everyone to look the same- shouldn’t we as fitness professionals be supporting anyone’s attempt at making the world a healthier happier place? Should we be really be judging a book by its cover?

2. Which leads me onto why should that matter about what they are saying? Do you only ever listen to people who look amazing (whatever you deem to be amazing that is). How many doctors look the picture of health? Maybe on the TV, but we all know how real that is! How many so called fitness experts are just obsessed egocentrics that spend most of the time looking in the mirror at themselves rather than their client who is not doing an exercise appropriate to them or even correctly. I see that ALL the time. One persons attractive is another’s road kill. Most of all why should that matter what they look like if what they are saying is sound information that is well research and makes complete sense.

3. Surely someone professing to be a believer in Holistic health should know better than that. Does this person only train people to look like themselves- what does that say about that person if they do? Does that mean that anyone who trains with that person only want to look exactly like them- if so is that person training people of the opposite sex? What does it say about the person making the statement and their own body image and fears?

and finally, I keep asking myself this over and over- why does it bother ME so much! I am content with who I am, what I am saying and what I look like- or do I still have a little work to do?!

Bottom line- things will come back to bite you in the ass so better make sure what you are saying is kind, supportive, constructive and positive- and good golly that’s what you will receive right back at you! So say I say advise away overweight nutritional therapist- I salute your energy, your passion and your dedication x

What do you think?

hummus

Hummus

 

One of my favourites snacks with cut veg, and as an addition to flatbreads salads, falafel, or halumi. Super nutritious and really easy to make. Kids love it, especially babies!. This is my version, I have been making it for years but I know some women who have had recipes handed down and make it as part of their heritage for longer than me- I hope they approve of my recipe and welcome their comments and suggestions.

2 cups drained soaked and well-cooked or canned chickpeas, cooking liquid reserved if possible (or you can sprout it)

2 tbs  tahini, or more to taste

2 tbs extra virgin olive oil, plus oil for garnish

1-2 clove garlic, peeled, or more to taste (I tend to roast mine in the oven first for a sweeter taste)

Juice of 1 lemon/lime

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

paprika and chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish

 

Put the chickpeas, tahini, garlic, and lime juice in a food processor (or a blender for even smoother hummus), sprinkle with salt and pepper, and begin to process; add oil and chickpea-cooking liquid as needed to produce a smooth purée.

Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt, pepper, or lemon juice as needed. Serve, drizzled with some olive oil and sprinkled with a bit of paprika and some parsley.