All posts filed under: Nutrition

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Sugar: The good, the bad and the ugly

As a kid there was no downside, nothing negative about sugar; it was only good in my eyes. I was the ‘Candy Queen’ (for those non-Brits the ‘Candy King’ is a pick ‘n’ mix sweet station at the cinema. Now I’ve explained you can see the level of humour we’ll reach). I could comfortably finish the biggest bag of pick ‘n’ mix during a film, or otherwise, with seemingly zero consequences. A bag of marshmallows – annihilated. A giant Toblerone – not a problem. Re-sealable chocolate bags – why would you do that?! A dessert, or anything sweet, was obviously to be consumed. Sugar to me was a friend; a warm comforting friend. I stayed active, running a lot, cycling, playing football and competing in athletics, so all that sugar got burned off. That was, until the teenage years, when hormones kicked in and I was less active – this was when ‘the sugar hit the fan’. I had multiple diabetes tests and episodes of passing out (all linked, I now believe, to too much …

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Simple Raw Chocolate recipe

I’ve finally perfected my simple raw chocolate recipe.  After lots of trial and error (welcomed by me and friends) I think I have it. Ingredients: 70g of cocoa or cacao powder (no added sugar) 6 tbsp of melted coconut oil (I prefer Vitacoco Coconut Oil) Agave syrup/honey to taste ( I usually use less as I love dark chocolate) Method: Melt the coconut oil and mix with a little sweetener. Add in the cocoa, taste and add more sweetener if desired. Place some baking paper on a tray (depending on how chunky you want the chocolate will determine how big your tray is) Pour out your mixture and sprinkle on desired toppings.  Such as goji berries, cherries, raspberries, raw caramel sauce, desiccated coconut, almond flakes, bee pollen if you’re brave and fancy a digestive and immune system boost with a kick of protein. Place the tray in the freezer and leave for about 30 minutes.  If you can’t wait that long just leave it in the bowl, stir in the toppings and grab a spoon! …

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Mood Foods

It’s true.  I get in moods.  There I said it.  I’m not always happy go lucky, smiley smiley, loving life, keeping to my routine or schedule.  I get angry, down, frustrated, irritable.  It happens to the best of us.  Lets be honest. What is interesting is the ongoing research linking our brains and gut .  What you eat really can affect your brain and subsequently emotions, feelings, thoughts and behaviour.  There is a lot bigger connection between our brain and our gut than we first thought and our gut is often referred to as “the second brain”. What you eat can cause reactions in your gut, for example; inflammation, ‘leaky gut syndrome’, ‘IBS’, abdominal pain, bloating, nausea.  Not only that, but psychological factors like stress, burn out, anxiety, worry, disappointment can also cause cramping and digestive pain, which in turn can affect the brain.  If then these physical and psychological factors can have a negative affect on the brain, then surely then can be a positive outcome as well.  Learning to manage stress, anxiety and …

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How super are “Superfoods”?

In recent years the promotion of the “Superfood” has been evident not only in health circles but in wider spheres, reaching the general population. “Superfoods” are essentially foods which are deemed highly nutrient dense and they have recently become much more widely available.  The spotlight has turned suddenly to them and they’ve been paraded out in all their glory  to trample on the mere, less ‘superior’, everyday foods in a multi coloured display of anti-oxidants, vitamins, omega-3s and other bioactive compounds.  One might think they’d been hiding out together in an underground “super food” convention waiting to reveal themselves to the world.  Also of note is that most of them came emerged from some far off country which makes them even more “super”.  However, what wasn’t thought through before they emerged from this underground meeting was what really any of that means and why have they just become so prevalent?! There’s been a lot of controversy over said food group with many people stating that it is simply a marketing tool.  The effects of these …