Lentil Soup

Soups are perfect during the freezing winter months. Soups are also warming and very healthy. This lentil soup is delicious and super quick to make.

Ingredients

1/2 white finely chopped white onion

1 garlic clove finely chopped

1 medium sized chopped carrot

1 medium sized chopped celery stick

7 chopped cherry tomatoes

1 cup of red split lentils

3 cups of water

1 heaped teaspoon of cumin

1 heaped teaspoon of organic ground turmeric

1 teaspoon of bouillon powder

Chili flakes

A generous amount of olive oil or coconut oil

Salt and pepper to your liking

Coriander

Start by sauteeing the onion and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes, then add the chopped carrot and celery and sauté for about 7 minutes, Then add the cumin, turmeric, bouillon, chilli  flakes and stir for a minute or two. Add the 1 cup of lentils, 3 cups of water and the cherry tomatoes. Let it cook for about 20 – 25  minutes on low to medium heat. The red split lentils cook fairly fast and there is no need to soak them over night. Season the soup to your liking and garnish with fresh coriander. Enjoy.

 

 

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6 Ways to Start the Day Right

Get into a morning routine that will set the tone for the rest of your day. Start the day the right way. Mornings are the best part of the day and they should not be rushed. You want to get your thoughts together, plan your day, not sprint out the front door. Here below are some tips that I hope will help.

Wake up early

Go to bed early and wake up early. I love getting up very early in the morning. For me this is the best time. I hate rushing. I like to take my time and gather my thoughts and have time to myself.

Drink warm water and lemon 

Make yourself a large glass of fresh lemon juice and warm water. This is like an internal shower and is very good for the liver, Have it 20 minutes before eating. You can also add some turmeric.

Deep breathing exercises

These are very beneficial especially if you live in a city and you are constantly challenged by a busy work schedule and stress. Cities are also very fast paced. This is why it is important to find time to yourself to distress and relax.

Have a green smoothie

Don’t grab a coffee and a pastry on your way to work. Instead opt for a healthier option that will give you more energy through out your busy morning. Refined sugar gives you that quick burst of energy followed by a quick dip. You want to be mentally sharp for your meetings. A green smoothie is a great way to load on vegetables and the beauty of a smoothie is that you can load it full of goodness. Try adding chia seeds, spirulina, wheatgrass or maca powder.

Exercise

In almost every post I stress the importance of exercise. It is so important for a healthy body and mind. Daily movement prevents the onset of disease. As we age it is so important to exercise. It is good for muscle mass which decreases as we get older and is good for bone strength. Exercise releases endorphins which promote feelings of happiness. This is why it is best to work out in the morning so you not only get it over and done with but it will put you in a good mood for the rest of the day.

Skin brushing

The benefits of skin brushing are endless. The skin is the largest organ in the body and it is important to look after it. Skin brushing removes dead skin cells, improves oxygenation and stimulates circulation. It also stimulates the lymphatic system which is essential in eliminating toxins. Best way to skin brush is before you shower. Make sure the brush is dry and start from the feet moving upward in circular motions. In areas of the body where the skin is thinner like the chest apply less pressure.

I hope the above helps. If you are looking for a bespoke nutritional plan purchase my initial consultation plan or email me.

 

 

5 Tips to Motivate Yourself to Exercise in Winter

Most of you come the beginning of January would have hit the gym to shed the weight gained during the festive season, but come mid month some of you may find it tough keeping it up. It is difficult to stay motivated when you wake up and it is bitterly cold and dark outside. Instead of waking up an hour early you probably want to get an extra hour of sleep. I will never stop repeating the importance of exercise and movement especially as we become older. Exercise makes us feel better and it not only keeps the weight off, but it is very good for our cardiovascular system and a must if you sit at a desk all day!  Here below are a few tips that I hope will help you stay motivated and moving!

Play your favourite song and get dancing

A fantastic way to get out of bed is by cranking up your favourite tune in the morning and start dancing to it. Don’t choose a song that will make you fall asleep, you want to wake up remember. This will set the mood for the whole day making you feel great and motivate you to work out.

Get a gym buddy

Getting a friend, family member or partner to exercise with is fantastic as you both motivate and push each other. Together you can create your an exercise plan. The key to success is planning ahead. Exercising together makes it more fun and a fitness buddy will offer you the support you need, making you feel more confident. If you have always been too shy to start a new class, with a workout partner it will make it easier.

Buy new workout gear

Shopping is therapy and it makes us happy. Go out and buy some sexy new workout gear that will boost your confidence and make you feel beautiful. Invest in some warm gear especially if you are running outside. You don’t want to freeze and be put off. There are some super cool exercise clothing out there.

Book a class

By booking a class you are committing yourself and cancelling or not showing up will mean that you will be charged. Most of you will pay a membership fee which means you want to get the most out of your gym, and if you have paid for an extra class you don’t want to throw money away. A class is great as it will make working out more fun and the instructor will be correcting your form.

Set a fitness goal

Why not commit  to run a a mini marathon or try a triathlon or start a new sport. By setting these goals you will be setting up a deadline to get into shape and this will motivate you to train. Remember winter bodies are made in the summer!

Hope the above helps. If you require a bespoke nutritional plan purchase my initial consultation.

5 Ways to Get Back on Track After the Holidays

This is my first post of 2018 and my first post in over a year. Due to personal reasons I took a break and I have to say that I actually enjoyed being away from social media. Like everyone I enjoyed the festive season and had a lovely Christmas, but now time to get back on track. I guess most of you are feeling bloated, fatigued and overweight after eating and drinking too much over the holidays. The secret to getting back to your usual routine is to do it straight away as soon as the festive season ends. The more you postpone it the harder it will be.

Get to bed early

Routine starts with going to bed early and getting up early. During the holidays most of us including myself would have gone to bed late. In order to get your body to its normal routine sleep is vital. When sleep is disrupted you wake up feeling exhausted and groggy. Getting back to a healthy sleeping habit will leave you feeling refreshed.

Grab a green Juice

Instead of grabbing another coffee go for a green juice. This is a fantastic way to include more greens into your diet. After all the over eating and drinking too much alcohol you need to alkalise your body. So go grab a juice on your way to work.

Get moving

Physical activity goes hand in hand with healthy eating. Get up early and go run or walk in the winter sun. Exercising not only will help you lose the kilos put on over Christmas but it will make you feel good and improve your mood. I suggest you exercise early morning before work. This is a great way to start the day.

Eat Healthy

I do not believe in diets but I do believe in healthy eating. A balanced diet is key to feeling good and functioning well. If we want to keep our bodies and brain active we must fuel it with the correct nutrients. Include more fruit and vegetables into your diet. Make sure you get plenty of good quality protein, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats. As mentioned before after the festive season your body will be pretty acidic with all the alcohol and sweets consumed so you need to be alkaline. Give your liver a break and cut back on the alcohol and drink more water.

Have a light week

For the first week of the new year concentrate on you, on resting your body and mind. Spend time at home and cancel your social diary for that first week. You need to take a break. Have relaxing massages and listen to  classical music. This will help boost your  energy levels and it is also a time to reflect and set realistic goals for the year ahead.

 

I hope the above tips help. If you are looking to lose weight or have other health issues please email me or feel free to purchase my initial consultation on my website.

Creamy Strawberry Vegan Ice Cream

This is a deliciously creamy ice cream perfect for these last warm days of summer. Do not worry if you do not have an ice cream maker. I don’t have one and my ice creams still come out good. This is so easy, yummy and super healthy.

Ingredients

1 can of full fat coconut milk

2 cups of strawberries washed and tops removed

3-4 dates depending how sweet you like it. You do not have to use dates. You can use any healthy sweetener of your choice like maple syrup etc.

1/4 teaspoon of guar gum (This will make it creamier)

Blend all the ingredients in the blender until lovely and smooth. Taste it to see if it is sweet enough. Feel free to add more sweetener.  If you have an ice cream maker follow the  instructions. If you do not have an ice cream maker pour into a freezer safe bowl and place in the freezer.  Freeze for about 3 hours. To stop it from icing keep stirring it every 20 minutes. This is to keep it creamy for when you scoop it out. Once ready scoop, serve and enjoy!

8 Tips to Avoid Gaining Weight on Holiday

Going on holiday can always be tricky and lets be realistic, you are not going to be losing weight on vacation. However this does not mean that you have to put on an extra kilo or two or deprive yourself of the foods you love. It is about being sensible and indulging in moderation. I divide my time between Italy and London and often tend to eat a little too much pasta and pizza when in Italy but I always manage to stay the same weight. Here below are a few tips that have helped me and I hope you will find useful.

Always have a healthy breakfast

The body is at its most acidic in the mornings so it is important to keep it alkaline. Therefore make sure you start the day right by always making it a healthy meal. Start your morning with warm water and lemon followed by a smoothie, fruit and chia pudding, avocado on toast with a poached egg or a bowl of porridge.

Indulge in moderation

Your are on holiday so no one expects you not to have a treat. All you have to do is to make  sure you make sensible choices. If you want to have a treat like a dessert or carbohydrates I suggest you have them during the day preferably at lunch time. When having a treat it doesn’t mean you have to binge on your favourite foods. If you fancy some cake have a slice not the whole cake. If you want to have lasagna have a small portion and do not have seconds. If you have pasta do not eat bread with it. Whatever treat you decide to enjoy always remember to include lots of vegetables and salads with your meals. Keep your portions small.

Alcohol

It is no secret that alcohol is full of hidden calories and is no good for the liver, however most people do like to enjoy a drink or two especially when on holiday. With alcohol moderation is key. When choosing alcoholic beverages choose wisely. Cocktails taste great but they are very high in calories so remember to be sensible. If you want to enjoy a drink I would recommend drinking vodka with sparkling water and freshly squeezed lemon juice. I would limit it to 2 drinks. Too much alcohol is not only bad for the liver but it is extremely dehydrating especially in warm weather when you need to stay hydrated. To keep well hydrated it is important to drink a glass of water for every alcoholic drink you consume.

Exercise

Most of you will be looking at this thinking that you want to relax on holiday, not workout. I am not suggesting you turn your holiday into a bootcamp vacation. However if you want to indulge in your favourite foods you must do some form of exercise. If you are on a beach or by a pool you can swim. Go for an early morning run or brisk walk on the beach. The more active you are the more calories you burn. I tend to go for 2-3 hour hikes, I am actually more active when I am away. You do not have to kill yourself. I am not suggesting you do 2 hours a day. You can fit in just a 20minute HIIT workout daily to keep the weight off.

Keep healthy snacks in your cupboards

If you know you have a sweet tooth do not keep your cupboards full of cakes and biscuits. Opt for healthy snacks like nuts, seeds, fruit, hummus and vegetables. The less unhealthy treats you have lying around the better. If you feel hungry have some hummus with carrot sticks or half an avocado. These are both filling and healthy. I do not eat a lot of dairy but I do have a soft spot for cheddar cheese. I therefore make sure I don’t keep it in the house otherwise I will end up eating the whole lot. This of course does not mean I never treat myself to a little cheese now and again. I just do not keep it in the house.

Stay away from salad dressings

You will definitely not be putting on any weight eating salads but beware of salad dressings. They taste great but are hidden with calories. Keep it simple and just use a little olive oil and apple cider vinegar for salads.

Simple is always best when eating out

Try to stay away from rich, heavy sauces and opt for grilled or steamed dishes when going out for a meal. There will always be healthy options on the menu. Many people use the excuse of dining out to stuff their faces with everything on the menu. Be sensible. Stay away from the bread basket and if going for a dessert make sure you have a healthy main like a grilled fish. Remember to always be sensible and keep your food choices simple and healthy.

Do not raid the buffet

Buffets have all sorts of foods and it can be so tempting to just keep eating everything! We have all done it. However do try to be sensible. Go for lots of salads and vegetables and protein so you become full quickly. As mentioned before this does not mean that you cannot enjoy your favourite foods. You just have to be sensible. Do not refill your plate 3 or 4 times.

It is important to remember that when you are on holiday you should enjoy yourself and not become obsessed with counting calories and starving yourself to keep your bikini body. Of course you want to enjoy a drink or two, have an ice cream or a pizza. You just have to remember that with everything in life moderation and balance are important. The older we become the more important it is to look after our health. If you would like a bespoke nutritional plan email me.