A Note to Highly Sensitive People….

Being told that we are too sensitive is something that many of us experience regularly! Being in touch with our emotions has become something that we are told we should apologise for, but in reality it is something that keeps us in tune with our lives. In the face of this kind of criticism it can be difficult to love yourself and appreciate how this part of your personality is actually beneficial to you and those around you! If there is one thing this world needs then it is definitely more sensitive people!

Being sensitive is one of the most fundamental things about being human, but as we have evolved many of us have lost touch with this part of ourselves. This is why those of us who have retained our sensitive nature often feel the need to apologise for our responses to certain situations. Although it is natural that this would make you want to change your behaviour, it is important to remember that it is the world that needs to adjust and you are in no way at fault.

As a highly sensitive person you are more than likely going to meet many people on your journey through life who will criticise you for being weak. Although it is often futile to try and debate the issue with these people, you have to remember for yourself that it takes strength to feel the pain in situations that other people turn a blind eye to. Far from being full of fear, you are full of the kind of courage that it takes to express yourself when it seems like the world wants you to shy away from your feelings.

In order to create a better world for yourself and those around you, it is essential that you retain your sensitivity; it is your awareness of your life and your environment. The way that you see the world and the way you navigate your time within it is dependant on your sensory perception. As a highly sensitive person you will feel things that others don’t and this is something that you should always see as a blessing! You might also find that you have certain qualities that seem to contradict each other, such as being a strong leader but also someone who becomes vulnerable quite easily.

As a highly sensitive person the chances are that you follow a healthier lifestyle than most. A tendency towards a plant-based diet is common – likely due to the suffering inflicted by the factory farming industry as well as a natural negative reaction towards toxic substances, like sugar and additives.

Regardless of how being a highly sensitive person sets you apart from your friends and family, you must always remember that it makes you the kind, caring person that you are!

If you are keen to learn more about plant-based nutrition then head over to The Flexi Foodie Academy!

3 Bean Spicy Chilli

Being American, chilli is a big deal!  And growing up in the cold Chicago winters….well, chilli was an even bigger deal! Of course, chilli recipes ideally have meat in them which of course is fine if you’re not vegetarian or vegan. However, I’ve found that adding in a selection of beans (three in this recipe) definitely makes a great and hearty substitute for the meat.  So, on those cold, rainy days – let this heart warming chilli be your go to super easy supper.  Oh, and PS, chilli is super easy to freeze so feel free to double this recipe so that you’ll always have it on hand when the downpours arrive!

Eating a range of beans is great for your health as they are bursting with nutrients. This recipe uses white beans, which are high in potassium and calcium, black beans, which are great for protein and magnesium, and kidney beans, which are packed full of dietary fibre! What’s not to love!

To make this dish for four people, you will need the following ingredients:

1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 celery sticks, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 x 400g tin white beans, drained and rinsed
1 x 400g tin black beans, drained and rinsed
1 x 400g tin kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 x 400ml tin chopped tomatoes
1 tsp. chilli powder
A small handful of basil, chopped
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. cumin
A small handful of coriander, chopped
1 avocado, sliced
1 lime, quartered
1 Tbsp. coconut oil

FullSizeRender (1)To get started you will need to take a large pot and melt the coconut oil over a medium to high heat in it. You can then add the onion, crushed garlic, carrot and celery and then cook for five minutes. Next, add all of the beans, chopped tomatoes and the spices and then cook for ten minutes over a medium heat. Once this time is up, you can then stir in the fresh basil until soft, which should just take a minute. Finally, serve into bowls and top with sliced avocado, fresh lime juice and chopped coriander. You’ll soon agree that it is SOOOO good!

Remember, for more amazing recipes like this and nutrition information and advice, head over to The Flexi Foodie Academy!

Eat These Foods to Boost Your Mood!

Throughout each day your mood will be influenced by many different things. These can, of course, be both positive and negative and will affect the way you feel during each day. As well as your interactions with other people and your environment, the food that you consume will play a role in influencing your mood.

People who consume processed or sugary foods regularly are likely to find that they experience a low mood or even depression. This can be because these foods wreak havoc with our blood sugar levels which causes a fluctuation in energy levels. This can quickly lead to irritability and fatigue which will make even the happiest of people quite grumpy! Making healthy, positive changes to your diet across the whole is a great way to keep your mood steady but you can also try including certain superfoods for a quick boost!

Raw cacao powder is one of these foods and I would suggest you include a serving in your diet every day, especially if you are already struggling with a low mood. Cacao has a seriously impressive range of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals within and is responsible for the perception people have of chocolate improving your mood. However, with processed chocolate products you also get an unhealthy dose of additives and other chemicals which can disrupt your hormones and actually be of detriment to your mood! Stick to raw, unprocessed cacao powder and you will soon see the benefits!

Chilli is another fantastic ingredient you can use to bring a dose of happiness to your day. Studies have shown that when we consume chilli, in any form, it increases the presence of endorphins in the brain which in turn gives us a pleasurable feeling! It is so easy to scatter just a pinch on your lunch and dinner, alternatively you can choose a delicious chilli sauce!

As you will know if you read my blog frequently, I am an advocate of the amazing health benefits of coconut oil and when it comes to your happiness this is especially true! The composition of healthy fats in coconut oil, as well as coconut milk and other coconut products, boosts your brain health. A healthy brain leads to a healthy mind and I would suggest consuming it in moderation regularly!

Most importantly of all, be sure that the majority of the food that you eat is real, wholesome, plant-based food! Don’t sabotage your mood with rubbish that is going to weigh your body down and disrupt your happiness!

For more top tips on how nutrition is essential for a healthy body and mind, check out The Flexi Foodie Academy!