Mango “Cheeze” Cake

This incredible “Cheeze” Cake is another of the amazing dishes that I discovered during my stay at the Amatara Wellness Resort in Thailand! It makes for such a beautiful dessert and the added bonus is that it packs a healthy punch too! Continue reading Mango “Cheeze” Cake

Thai Green Curry with Vegetables

Following on from the amazing recipe I shared recently for Raw Carrot and Ginger Soup, I would like to share another absolute delight from the kitchen of the beautiful Amatara Resort in Phuket!

You can make this curry with any combination of vegetables that you desire, but great options are baby corn, carrots, courgettes, mushrooms, broccoli, and red pepper.

The inclusion of fresh basil is one of my favourite parts of this recipe, and really helps to create the distinctive and delicious flavour of the dish. It also doesn’t hurt that basil is bursting with goodness, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, copper, and calcium!

Ingredients:

  • 25g green curry paste
  • 250ml coconut milk
  • 50ml vegetable stock
  • 10ml soy sauce
  • 3g kaffir lime leaves
  • 5g coconut nectar
  • 20g eggplant
  • 15g fresh basil leaves
  • 5g red chilli
  • Small bowl of mixed vegetables
Method:
Heat the coconut milk in a large pan for a few minutes before adding the green curry paste. Stir well.
Oil your wok and add your selection of vegetables. Heat for a few moments and then coat with the curry paste sauce. Add vegetable stock, kaffir lime leaves, soy sauce and coconut nectar to the wok and bring to the boil before adding the eggplant. Add the fresh basil leaves with the chilli and then serve.
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Wellness for Women

If you have seen my wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we keep moving through 2018!

 

Also, if you wan to learn about how eating more plant-based foods can enhance your health and your energy levels, then click here now to check out my starter guide!

Fighting Fatigue for Endless Energy

If you came crashing into 2018 already working towards your goals and instigating big positive changes then you may find now that your energy and enthusiasm is lacking a little! The same might also be true of your energy levels at the moment if you had a slow start to the year, and have found it difficult to get motivated. Continue reading Fighting Fatigue for Endless Energy

BFree Foods Brand Ambassador

I have a big announcement to share here on my blog! As you probably know, healthy eating is one of my biggest passions, and this is a concept that I am always excited to share with other people. This is something that I am now eager to do within my role as Brand Ambassador for BFree Foods!

The BFree Foods Story

In case you don’t know much about this incredible company, here is why I decided to become their Brand Ambassador.

Sweet P feta wrap with product

BFree Foods was created in order to make delicious, healthy foods much more easily available. Absolutely all of their products are allergen free, which means if you have an allergy or sensitivity to a particular food, then you can consume anything from the BFree Foods range without worrying!

Although the focus of the BFree Foods range is wheat-free and gluten-free foods, their products are additionally free from soya, dairy, eggs and nuts!

As well as providing allergen free choices, BFree Foods strive to create healthy options. Their ambition with doing so is to make it easier for you to get the nutrients you need whilst also avoiding the ingredients you don’t want!

Shop Online

If you head to the BFree Food online store now then you’ll be able to see for yourself the exciting range of foods available. You can also check out their recipe section for some great suggestions on how to best enjoy their products.

26-06-17 BeFree Shot 07

Also, if you have any questions about allergen free eating then feel free to leave a question in the comments and I’ll get back to you!

Self-Care Sunday – Emotional Eating

As you all know, self-care is one of my favourite things to talk about AND is also something that I consistently work to make a part of my own life. In fact, I’m so sure about the power of self-care that it’s the focus of my upcoming book – Recharge: A Year of Self-Care to Focus on You.

In order to celebrate the launch of my book I am going to be sharing one topic from the book every Sunday for 12 weeks. This is something that I got started with last week, and you may have caught the video on YouTube!

For those of you who missed it, the first topic that I wanted to explore with you was Emotional Eating.

Emotional eating is something that we are all surely sometimes guilty of! Everyone does it – myself included – but it is important that we recognise this behaviour in ourselves and that we work to overcome the source of our issues.

The way in which many of us live, with packed out schedules, stressful jobs and so many things to keep on top of, means that turning to food for comfort is often easy to do. It can feel as though food is the only thing that will fill the void after a long day, and most of us will know already which our go-to foods are!

As I discussed in my first video in my Self-Care Sunday series, the most important thing when it comes to emotional eating is to acknowledge your feelings. When you know that you are eating to soothe your emotions, make a conscious effort to understand your feelings in this moment. Listen to these thoughts and don’t beat yourself up for feeling this way. This can help you to develop a deeper understanding as to why you are engaging in this behaviour.

Creating healthy habits in regards to your eating, and breaking away from any negativity that exists within your relationship to food, is the best way to move forwards and away from emotional eating.

I have put together a downloadable PDF for you to look at alongside this video, and you can click here to enter your email address and receive this download!

Also, if you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we move towards the end of 2017!

Exercise and Weight Loss

Losing weight is a common health and fitness goal for many people for a variety of reasons. There are many ways to go about achieving this fitness goal, but there is also a lot of misleading information that can actually sabotage weight loss efforts!

If you are trying to lose weight then it is likely that you have adjusted your diet and that you are also regularly engaging in some kind of exercise. The following points are things that you should bear in mind when you are exercising and try to incorporate into your existing efforts!

Cardio

Cardio is known to be a great way to lose weight, but it has to be approached in a sensible way. If you overdo it with your cardio workouts then you are going to be causing harm to your body, and this can have an impact on your weight loss. This is because excessive amounts of cardio can cause inflammation.

Overdoing it when it comes to cardio can also mean that you end up eating more as you have used up a great deal of your energy stores! When you do too much cardio you will also be allowing your body to release excess levels of stress hormones into your body. These hormones can not only disrupt your sleep pattern, but can also cause your body to store more fat.

Mixing up the types of cardio that you engage in, and the amount that you do, is key to success here. Team sports and dancing are exciting alternatives to a 5km on the treadmill!

Ab Exercises

Exercising your abs is a great way to tone these muscles for definition. Also, the strength of your core is an important component of your overall optimum health. However, when you over-do it with the ab exercises when you are trying to lose weight, you could hinder your efforts. This is because exercises that develop the abs will help to build a layer of muscle in this area, and this can go against the slimming down of your waistline!

During the first few months of your weight loss attempt, I would advise that you mostly utilise short periods of cardio – around 20 minutes max – and then engage in weight training exercises that work the larger muscle groups. As you move towards your desired weight, you can then begin to include exercises that target the smaller muscles in order to improve overall muscle tone.

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we keep moving through 2017!

Ginger for Good Health!

There are many amazing foods that you can add to your meals in order to enhance the flavour and improve the nutritional value. Ginger is one such thing that is not only loved for its taste, but also for its health boosting properties for both your body and brain.

Whether you use ground ginger or purchase the root and chop, grate or slice it yourself, you will be able to enjoy the many health advantages.

One of the most appreciated uses of ginger is to tackle feelings of nausea, especially those brought on by morning sickness. It is also believed to be effective in reducing vomiting for post-surgery patients and is used regularly by those undergoing chemotherapy.

Ginger can be effective in alleviating muscle pain and soreness following exercise due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Although the effects are not immediate, it will contribute to lowered levels of pain and soreness when used day to day. The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can also help to relieve the impact of osteoarthritis.

Consuming ginger regularly is thought to lower cholesterol levels, which is good news for the health of your heart. High levels of cholesterol can contribute to the onset of heart disease and it is possible to help limit your risk by taking control of your diet!

Now that you know some of the great advantages of including ginger in your diet, let’s take a look at some easy and delicious ways that you can include it in your diet.

Drinking ginger tea is a simple way to enjoy it. You can either buy ready made tea, or you can cut up a chunk of ginger and pour hot water over it. For extra flavour and nutrition you can include a dash of lemon juice.

Adding chunks of ginger to soup is also easy to do and you can use fresh or powdered for similar benefits. If you are going to blend your soup before you eat it then it is effortless to just include large pieces of fresh ginger as it will get blitzed anyway!

Ginger can also be used in moderation in baking and can give an interesting twist to many dishes. Always be sure to follow the recipe when you are using ginger so that you do not overwhelm your dish with this flavour.

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we keep moving through 2017!

Anxiety and your Diet

Choosing which food we will nourish our bodies with is among the most important decisions that we will make each day. With our dietary choices we have the potential to either heal or harm ourselves, and this is particularly true when it comes to anxiety.

Research has shown that certain foods can exacerbate feelings of stress and anxiety, whereas other foods have the potential to combat and ease these feelings. If anxiety is something that is affecting your life in some way then taking notice of the following tips could go a long way to helping you overcome it!

Tryptophan

Tryptophan is an amino acid that has been shown to have a positive effect on reducing stress. It is a precursor to serotonin, which is extremely beneficial for promoting feelings of calm and happiness.

Tryptophan naturally occurs in several plant-based foods, most notably in bananas, oats, peanut butter and sesame seeds.

Vitamin B

There is much research to suggest a connection between the various B vitamins and the mood. In fact, a deficiency in any of the B vitamins can lead to a low mood, anxiety and even depression.

Eating a range of foods that contain B vitamins is the best way to enjoy the many benefits of this vitamin group. Good foods to include are leafy green vegetables, oranges, nuts, spirulina, watermelon, spinach, rice and legumes.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates often get a bad rep in the wellness world, but they are actually great for increasing serotonin production. Whole grain carbohydrates are the best choice and you should make an effort to avoid processed carbs, such as white rice and white bread.

When you eat whole grain carbohydrates it takes a while for your body to break them down, and this means that sugar is being released into the bloodstream relatively slowly. This is great for consistent energy levels as well as consistent mood.

The best things to include are brown rice, quinoa, oats, whole-wheat pasta and legumes.

Caffeine

Caffeine is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to dietary choices that encourage feelings of anxiety!

Caffeinated drinks, such as coffee and energy drinks, are often favoured for the quick burst of energy that they can provide, but after the high comes the inevitable crash – and this can impact your mood as well as your energy levels! Furthermore, studies have shown that the presence of caffeine can actually inhibit serotonin production. This can quickly cause you to be more prone to feelings of irritability, anxiety and depression!

This month on my wellness for women community website we are talking about the best ways to avert anxiety! You can click here to join us now and start on your journey to a happier, healthier version of yourself!

Nutrition for Tackling Stress

The foods that you choose to consume will have an impact on how well your mind is equipped to deal with stress! There are also of course many other factors, such as the hours that you work and your home-life. However, nourishing your body with the vitamins and minerals that it needs will go a long way to helping you stay happy and relaxed.

Vitamin B

When we are stressed out our vitamin B stores become depleted and this can affect the function of our neurotransmitters, which are the chemicals that communicate information around the brain. Therefore, eating a diet that is rich in B vitamins will help to ensure that our health does not suffer when stress does strike.

Nuts are an optimum source of B vitamins and also contain beneficial levels of healthy fat. Regularly eating a range of raw, unsalted nuts can also help to keep your cholesterol down and combat inflammation in the body.

An adequate presence of vitamin B12 in the body is essential for combatting stress, as well as keeping energy levels up. Your energy levels can have an impact on your stress levels if you have a lot to get done without the energy stores to do so! Taking a B12 supplement is a good idea if you follow a plant-based diet as it does not generally occur naturally in these foods.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an essential component of mood management and can help to keep stress down whilst also boosting the immune system. Certain studies have shown that a person’s blood pressure will return to normal quicker if that person were to consume vitamin C before completing a stressful task. Oranges are one of the most popular sources of vitamin C, but it can be found at beneficial levels in many fruits and vegetables.

Magnesium

The presence of magnesium in the body is also essential for tackling stress. Low levels of magnesium can lead to fatigue, as well as headaches and other visible signs of stress. Leafy green vegetables are a fantastic source of magnesium and you should try to get several servings throughout the day.

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we enter 2017!

Do You Know Why Plant-Based Foods Are Health Essentials?

As we know, there are vast differences between foods made from animal products and plant-based foods. Beyond the obvious difference of where these two food groups come from, there are also nutritional differences that it are great to be aware of.

You might not have heard the reasons why it is essential to not negate plant-based foods as a prominent part of your diet. In this post I am going to discuss certain nutrients that you simply can’t get in adequate amounts from meat products.

Vitamin C

First of all, and perhaps most importantly, vitamin C is not present in beneficial amounts in any cooked animal products. On the flip side, vitamin C is found in abundance in many vegetables and fruits. This is an essential vitamin that maintains connective tissue, as well as preventing a wide range of health problems that are caused by vitamin C deficiency. It can also help to regulate blood pressure and promotes the optimum function of your blood vessels.

Flavonoids

One of the most important groups of antioxidants to consume for good health is flavonoids. They are present in practically every plant-based food you can get your hands on, making it easy to get an adequate amount with a varied plant-based diet. Flavonoids have many uses in the body, not least aiding your brain function, protecting the cardiovascular system, lowering blood pressure and LDL cholesterol, as well as helping to protect against cancer.

Lignans

You may not have heard of lignans before, but they have several incredibly important roles to play in the body. Not only do they help to regulate our hormone levels and support the immune system, but they are also thought to aid in the relief of menopausal symptoms. This is due to the way they interact with estrogen. However, they also interact with testosterone in such a way that they can improve prostate health! Lignans are phytonutrients that are high in antioxidants, which of course also means they are perfect for fighting free radicals in the body. The foods which are richest in lignans are whole grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and seeds! So, as you can see, a varied plant-based diet will allow you to benefit from the fantastic benefit of lignans!

There are of course many more amazing nutritional benefits to be gained from eating a range of plant-based foods every day but hopefully these top three will motivate you to get started!

Want to learn more about nutrition? Head over to The Flexi Foodie Academy!