images-7

Exercising more and not losing weight?

So you’ve started walking more, going to the gym, or you’re training for a 5km race. Brilliant! You expected the weight to drop off, so why aren’t you seeing RESULTS?

Here are 5 top reasons:

  1. Exercising can result in an increase in your appetite, so you eat more. If you are genuinely more hungry, fill up on low calorie foods, fruit/veg, low fat yoghurt, milky coffee or tea, water. Consider bringing a meal forward by an hour if you are ravenous.
  2. You eat more before and/or after your session to fuel the exercise. One of the most common mistakes I see is someone having a milkshake drink after 40 minutes in the gym to aid recovery, often followed with in a few hours of a normal meal. A typical bottle of milkshake will provide 300-400kcal, essentially replacing the calories you’ve just burned off. If you are exercising to lose weight, then you need a calorie deficit ie. burning more than you eat/drink.
    Post exercise shakes have their place, but watch the extra calories!

    Post exercise shakes have their place, but watch the extra calories!

    Although extra food/drinks may be necessary for long and strenuous workouts, for shorter workouts less than an hour, the need isn’t as significant. Normal meal and snacks around exercise should be enough eg. snack of an apple or banana 1-2 hours before a workout, fruit yoghurt after.

  3. You think you can eat what you want because you exercise – if only! A 3 mile run will burn approximately 300 kcal. Not an excuse to have 6 biscuits or a whole pizza. Rewarding yourself with high fat/calorie ‘treat’ food can cancel out the good work done. Even professional athletes who have multiple training sessions each day have to be careful with their diets.
  4. You need to change your workout - you run for 40 minutes three times a week, or sit on a exercise bike and do some crunches. Your body adapts to what you do day in day out. You need to challenge your body. If you want to change, you need to change what you are doing!
  5. You sit down for the rest of the day – You have an intensive workout for an hour, so you don’t feel so bad about taking the car for journeys that you could walk. You need to stay as active as you can, humans are born to move. If you feel too exhausted to do anything but sit down for the rest of the day, you are probably over doing the exercise.
images-3

Nutrition Basics for Weight Loss & Health

My friend Emma, who I see every morning on the school run, has lost a stone over the last few months, and is now lighter and feels healthier than she did before having 3 children. Following the birth of her first child, she hired a personal trainer to lose the baby weight. She swears that the regular, intense workouts made no difference to her weight or size. She assumed the exercise would mean the weight would drop off, so hadn’t changed her diet (perhaps she was even eating a bit more due to increased appetite with the exercise).

This time around, after the third kid, she felt she didn’t have the time or energy for intense PT sessions. Instead she changed what she ate, and BOOM, with in days the slow and steady weight loss started. She didn’t ‘go on a diet’, just made logical and sensible changes.

Of course, exercise is extremely beneficial to health and well being (self confessed addict here). However, it is often said that weight loss is 80% diet and 20% exercise. How accurate this is I do not know, but one thing is for sure, if you want to lose weight, or take steps towards a healthier

StarbucksVentiMintMochaChipFrappuccinolifestyle, you have to start in the kitchen. The 500 kcal burned during a 5 mile run can be wiped out in minutes with a frappicino and a cookie. Combine nutritious food with some cardio (for fitness) and weights (for strength and to tone up), and you are on to a winner!

Making wholesome and nutritious food choices for most of your meals and snacks, as well as being conscious of portion sizes can have a profound effect on weight, well being and long term health. All too often we are bombarded with confusing and complex messages about diets and nutrition products.

So the secret is to keep it simple, you don’t need a lot of fancy or exotic ingredients. Fill your fridge with vegetables, lean meat, eggs and lower fat dairy, and your cupboards with wholesome starchy food and tinned fish, tomatoes, nuts, seeds etc. Frozen vegetables are just as good, and often better nutritionally than fresh.

 

What does a healthy meal look like? Try this:

veggies

  • 1/2 plate: salad/vegetables/fruit
  • 1/4 plate protein: chicken, pork, beef, fish, beans, lentils
  • 1/4 plate starchy food: potatoes, rice, pasta, quinoa, cous cous, wholemeal bread
  • use oils and oily dressings sparingly

Most people have far too much starchy food eg. big plate pasta, and too little veg. Many athletes have too little starchy food (carbs…..eeeek!), too much protein and too little veg.

How does this translate to real life? Here are some examples…..

Breakfast:

  • Berry Banana Breakfast Bake
  • Granola
  • handful porridge oats, water, milk, berries/raisins
    Nag's muesli

    Homemade muesli

  • 1 wholemeal toast, little bit of butter, 2 boiled/poached/dry fried eggs
  • Natural yoghurt & fruit, 1 toast
  • Homemade muesli
  • Summer oats
  • Shake: milk, spoon of yoghurt, banana/berries, honey
  • 2 Weetabix, milk, banana

Meals:

  • 4 no effort meals
  • Spaghetti bolognaise: 1/4 plate spaghetti, add extra veg to bolognaise (grated carrot, extra tin tomatoes). Serve with side salad or Deidre’s coleslawimage
  • Meatballs in tomato sauce with extra veg & pasta
  • Rice, salmon, carrots & broccoli
  • Wholemeal pitta, tuna mixed with natural yoghurt/light mayo, chopped pepper, spring onion & lettuce
  • 1 wholemeal toast, little bit of butter, 2 boiled/poached/dry fried eggs
  • bowl of salad leaves, grated carrot, peas, sunflower & pumpkin seeds, chopped up chicken or flaked salmon
    image

    wholemeal bread, tuna with light mayo & yoghurt, carrot, spring onion, pepper

  • Super food salad with some chicken/fish
  • Lentil & tomato soup

Snacks (hunger often confused with thirst, so first have a glass water/cup of tea or coffee):

  • Apple & handful almonds
  • Rice cake with peanut butter/quark & small dollop of pesto
  • Homemade flapjack
  • Yoghurt & strawberries image
  • Humous and carrot sticks
  • Glass of milk and banana/raisins
  • Skinny latte & apple

Tips:

  • stick to 1 portion of meals, if still hungry fill up up more veg/fruit
  • avoid creamy sauces, choose tomato/vegetable based ones
  • be aware that oils (yes, even olive oil) has 100kcal per tablespoon. Use but don’t over do it. If eating out, ask for dressing on the side.
  • Be aware that sugary drinks (including pure fruit juice) can add significant calories to your diet. Go for water, tea, coffee, herbal teas, diluted cordial, or diet drinks instead.
  • Drink a large glass of water before a meal
  • Don’t put pot of food on table, serve up in kitchen to avoid picking at extras
  • By all means have ice cream, but not everyday and just a few scoops, not half the tub. Same goes for biscuits, crisps, chocolate, wine, beer etc. Not everyday and control the amounts.
  • Be aware that ‘light’, ‘lite’ or reduced fat doesn’t mean low in fat, just that it is 25% lower than full fat version.
  • Use natural yoghurt instead of mayonnaise,  or mix half yoghurt with half reduced fat mayo
  • If you are at work with limited access to appropriate food choices, bring your own food from home.
  • more tips

I hope some of these ideas may be of use to you. If it all seems a bit too much, just pick one or two ideas each week. Gradual changes that become habit are more likely to be of long term benefit than making massive changes that can be overwhelming.

Mark Twain: Habit is habit and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed downstairs a step at a time.

Unknown-2

Seriously Healthy Flapjacks – no butter or sugar

Photo on 2013-04-24 at 14.30

For children and adults alike, these super healthy flapjacks are a perfect snack between meals to help keep hunger at bay. I even have a few of them for breakfast while on the way to school.

No sugar, syrup or butter, the ripe bananas and honey add the sweetness.

They are easy to make, and ingredients can be adapted to suit your tastes. Oats provide fibre to keep you feeling full up and blood sugar levels steady, berries are choca-block full of antioxidants, and toasted seeds are full of protein and good fats. If you want to bump up the protein for a post exercise snack, you can use protein powder for the liquid.

2 mashed bananas – the riper the better as sweeter and easier to mash

handful of chopped or ground up seeds – I grill pumpkin and sunflower seeds

handful of chopped raisins/frozen berries Unknown-4

150g porridge oats

150ml liquid  e.g. milk/protein shake/baby milk for extra vitamins(!)

1 tablespoon honey (optional)

Mix all the ingredients together. Put in to cake tin lined with greaseproof paper, or silicone bun cases.

Bake for about 40 minutes at 150 degrees C. Et voila, tasty, seriously healthy, filling snacks.

Tired all the time?

Coffee is good for you, hurray!

Hands up all those who feel guilty about drinking coffee!
I have to confess, I love my coffee, and have usually had two cups by 6am. With 3 children to look after, 5-7am and 8-11pm are the only times I can get peace to work. Coffee wakens me up and sharpens my mind, so that I’m not sitting staring blankly at the laptop screen, and hopefully so that what I write isn’t incoherent drivel. Freshly brewed is my preference, however, instant will do. I’m not too fussy.

Photo on 2013-06-26 at 06.14 #3

So 4 cups a day. EEEK, should a dietitian admit to that?! According to a wealth of reliable studies I shouldn’t be feeling guilty, in fact I am being positively virtuous. Hurray!!

A 2012 study following 400,000 people over 14 years found a multitude of health benefits for coffee drinkers, which backed up findings from earlier studies. Here is a summary of the benefits of coffee drinking:

  • reduced risk of death from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and infections.
  • 10% chance of living longer than non-coffee drinkers (3 cups/day)
  • less likely to develop Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia
  • helps control symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

Why?

Coffee is choc-a-bloc full of antioxidants. 1300 in total after roasting.

Caffeine in sport….

There is sound evidence that caffeine may enhance sports performance, specifically, endurance sports (more than 60 min), brief sustained high-intensity sports (1-60 min), and team/intermittent sports  (improved work rates, skills and concentration).

Any negatives?

The affects of caffeine in coffee is variable, depending on the sensitivity of each individual. Some people find they get jittery after a few sips, I on the other hand can guzzle a fair few cups before experiencing any side effects. Common side effects include:

  • restlessness, insomnia, irratibility, headache, gut disturbances.

What about dehydration?

A review of 10 scientific research studies, concluded that when you drink coffee, the body retains some of the fluid and that caffeine only causes mild fluid elimination from the body. There is no evidence that consumption of caffeinated beverages causes fluid abnormalities. A person who regularly consumes coffee/caffeine has a higher tolerance therefore would have to consume more coffee to have a diuretic effect compared to someone who does not drink coffee regularly.

So, it’s best to know your own body and how much caffeine you can tolerate before experiencing these side effects. Limit yourself to a maximum of 6 cups per day. Certain groups such as pregnant women and people with high blood pressure should limit this further. Pregnant women should have no more than 200mg of caffeine (approximately 2 cups of coffee).

Unknown-1

5 reasons Mums can’t lose the weight

In the past week, I’ve had at least 5 conversations with other mums about their weight, and how to lose it.  It’s one of those things that just seems to happen…….after each child you don’t quite manage to get to your pre pregnancy weight, then over the years the weight creeps up even more. You feel that you’re not over eating, in fact sometimes you can go most of the day without a meal. And you’re on your feet all day so you must be burning up loads of calories.

So why are the scales not going down? What is going on? In a nutshell, you are eating more calories than you are burning. This can be for a number of reasons:

Here a the top 5 reasons why you can’t lose the weight:

  1. Skipping meals: you wake up and are met with the insane and constant demands of your children. Not only do you have to get yourself ready for the day, but all of the children too. If I include myself, I’ve 4 sets of teeth to clean, 4 hairs to brush, 4 bodies to dress, and 4 mouths to feed. It’s easy to miss breakfast! Before you know it’s 10am and you are starving, so you grab a muffin in Starbucks (a skinny one, must be Unknownhealthy right?), or a croissant, and a latte.  At lunchtime, you’re not that hungry, so a biscuit or two or a a packet of crisps is fine, and so the inconsistent grazing continues through the day. By not eating regular meals, you snack on less than nutritious, high calorie food. This is ‘mindless’ eating. Not only are you depriving yourself of nutritious food, you are stacking up the calories. Take 2 minutes in the morning to tell yourself that today, you are going to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  2. ‘Tasting’ while cooking: I am certainly guilty of this. I love cooking and baking, and Unknown-1can easily spend a few hours each day in the kitchen. I like to taste the food, so I’ll have a munch here and there, a taste of this and that to gauge the flavour, and the final product of course.
  3. Finishing the kid’s food: Kids eat until they’ve had enough, so more often than not there will be left over food on their plate. Half a sausage down your hatch with out even thinking about it – that can be nearly 100kcal. Some yoghurt left in the pot (hey, it’s healthy and we can’t let that go to waste can we, and it there’s less mess to clean up!). Half a banana on the walk home from school because daughter didn’t want it, in it goes! All these add up to 100s of calories per day. You are not a human dust bin!
  4. Over eating/drinking in the evening: I understand the immense relief that comes with the children finally being in bed. The peace is something to behold. It’s ‘me’ time, time for a lovely meal and a glass of wine to wind down. You need it, and you deserve it. It is what has been keeping you sane all day. Just be aware that this is a form of
    Better get cracking on this lot!

    Better get cracking on this lot (7200kcal)!

    emotional eating and drinking, and often is a major contributor to weight gain. Look at your portion size of pasta or rice – does it fill the plate? 1/4 plate of pasta, or a fist size amount provides about 250kcal. Fill your plate with salad and veggies. I’m not going to lecture about the health dangers of regular alcohol intake, but one bottle of wine has about 600kcal, the equivalent to a meal.

  5. Reduced metabolism – as we age, our metabolism slows, probably due to loss of muscle. As well as reduced metabolic rate, although you may be active all day, the calories you are using up through exercise is not enough. You need to boost your metabolism by getting some strenuous exercise that gets you sweating! Just pootling up and down the swimming pool or sitting on the exercise bike for twenty minutes isn’t enough. HIIT training is fabulous for those who don’t have much time. Building some muscle by doing weight bearing exercise will also help.
images-3

Shhhhh – 8 constipation cures

Constipation is something that most people suffer from time to time, or for the unlucky, everyday. It’s also something that most people don’t like to talk about, even to their doctor. For me, I was inflicted during my 3 pregnancies so I am well aware of the discomfort and misery it can cause!images-2

Not everyone has a bowel movement daily, but you may have constipation if you pass fewer than three stools a week, if you pass hard stools, strain more than usual or if you feel that you haven’t completely emptied your bowel.

Here are the most common causes of constipation:

  • pregnancy hormones slow the contractions of the bowel, possibly to allow for more nutrient absorption from food.
  • iron supplements – very common to experience constipation
  • IBS – an imbalance of gut bacteria results in an over production of methane gas when ferment able carbohydrate foods are eaten. Methane is thought to reduce bowel muscle contraction.
  • hypothyroidism – a common condition when the thyroid gland in the brain doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormone. This causes the body’s systems to slow down, including the digestion
  • diabetes – uncontrolled diabetes with high blood sugar levels can cause damage to the nerve endings in the bowel
  • Diet: lack of fluid or fibre, too many refined foods (white bread, pastries, pasta, biscuits, cake etc.)

So if you don’t want to resort to laxatives, what can you do to get things moving? Here are 8 cures for constipation:

    1. fluid – having enough fluid in your bowel helps a lot! It doesn’t matter what you drinkbottled-water (contrary to popular belief coffee and tea aren’t dehydrating). Aim for about 2 litres of fluid a day. Until recently I struggled to drink just plain water, until a client gave me a very simple tip……put a 2 litre bottle of water in plain view, aim to finish it by the end of the day. Simple!
    2. apples, pears, rhubarb, prunes, figs, or any fruit. Fruit acts as a natural laxative, drawing water in to the bowel. The gentle fibre encourages the bowel muscles to contract, helping to move things along.
    3. glass of fruit juice – fruit juice has an ‘osmotic effect’ meaning that it’s sugar draws water in to the bowel, which is a great thing for people with constipation. This is why for some people prone to IBS with diarrhoea, they are advised to avoid fruit juice as it can make things even worse?
    4. coffee – caffeine has a stimulatory effect on the bowel, meaning that it causes the gut muscles to contract. Many people find that a strong cup of coffee has them heading for the toilet within minutes!image
    5. flaxseed – rich in insoluble fibre, ground flaxseed absorbs water adding bulk to help move things through the digestive tract quickly. Sprinkle a teaspoon in to porridge, a bowl of soup, or try making this easy Bread
    6. Yogurt – if your gut bacteria are out of balance, this can affect how your bowel functions. Activia yogurt contains good bacteria, and has scientific backing that it helps with constipation.
    7. exercise – there’s an established relationship between our activity level and our bowel habits and in cases of vigorous exercise (e.g., running) there is clearly evidence of a significant increase in activity helping with constipation.image
    8. magnesium supplement – worth trying, some people find relief within days by taking about 300mg magnesium citrate per day (this is the recommended daily amount). Magnesium is important for muscle contraction, and draws water into the bowel. If you have kidney or severe heart problems ask your doctor first.

 

 

 

Refuelling for Tournaments

Keeping the body fuel at it’s peak for training and matches can be challenging enough, so how do you ensure that you are reaching full throttle during events that have multiple games or rounds?

It is typical for the athletes, players, and believe it or not, coaches to turn up to events like football, rugby or swimming tournaments with no fuelling strategy in place. If peak performance is the objective, this is utterly absurd and an inexcusable oversight.

Here’s why:

  • muscle fuel stores will decrease during each game or event. Water or rehydration drinks are not enough to replace this energy so muscle fuel stores will become depleted, affecting muscle power output, speed, balance, injury risk etc.
  • carbohydrate is required for the brain cells to function optimally, essential for making quick and accurate decisions on the field

Be prepared, stock up on food supplies before the journey to the event. Don’t ‘wing it’ by hoping that there might be food available when you get there.

3-4 hours before:

Normal meal: consisting of plenty of carbohydrates (bread, potatoes, rice pasta etc.) protein (meat, fish, eggs, chicken etc.) and ideally fruit/veg. Fluid.

1-2 hours before: easily digestible food, high carbohydrate, low fat, continue to drink plenty.

  • energy bars Unknown-2Unknown-3
  • muesli bars
  • banana or any fruit
  • fruit smoothie
  • low fibre breakfast cereal with milk e.g Rice Krispies or Cornflakesimages-1
  • Scones
  • Sandwiches made with white bread
  • low fat fruit yogurt
  • Scones

    Scones

    imagesbetween heats:

  • 200ml diluted fruit juice/smoothieUnknown-4
  • Energy gels
  • Carbohydrate Drinks e.g. Lucozade Sport
  • Handful of jelly sweets e.g. jelly beans/babies (Haribo are quite chewy so hard to eat enough!)
  • Scone/fruit bread
  • Ripe banana

Know what works for you, and don’t try something new on the day. For example, some people find that energy gels give them stomach cramps and feel better with a ripe banana.

If you suffer from diarrhoea before or during an event, there are a number of foods that you should avoid for 24 hours before. ‘Trigger foods’ typically include lactose (found in milk/yogurt), gluten (found in food containing wheat flour), and ‘prebiotics’ (look for inulin or oligosaccharides on food labels – often in sports energy bars and drinks). Confused? Then just ask a sports dietitian who can help you.

images-1

Diabetes – taking control

Unknown

Diabetes medication

Once a month, I hold a Diabetes Clinic with a GP and Diabetes Nurse at one of the local surgeries in Kingston. There is a constant stream of patients looking for help with what they are eating to help to control their blood sugar levels or to lose weight. I hope I make a difference for them, using the most up to date scientific evidence combined with 13 years of practical experience.

Type 2 Diabetes does not have to be a disease that gets worse over time. It is possible to keep your blood sugar under control by eating the right things. It is possible to reduce diabetes medication.

Contrary to the outdated advice that many UK health professionals are giving, a diabetes diet is not the same as a healthy eating or weight loss diet. The problem for diabetics is that the body has difficulty keeping blood sugar levels down. Sugar in the blood comes from the food that we eat. The foods that turn into different types of sugar as soon as they reach the stomach are called carbohydrates. This means sugar (as in sugary drinks, fruit juice, sweets) and starch (as in bread, pasta, rice and potatoes). The science shows that avoiding these foods can improve blood sugar levels and halt the progression of diabetes.

Unknown copy 14

All carbohydrate foods will increase blood sugar levels

The more carbohydrates we eat in a meal, the more sugar is absorbed into the blood stream. The more sugar that’s absorbed into the blood stream, the higher the blood sugar will be. Here is an example of how a high carbohydrate meal (sandwich, fruit and flavoured yogurt) affects the blood sugar levels compared to a low carbohydrate meal (beef, vegetables and a creamy sauce):

Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 18.18.36

High carbohydrate meal (red) Low carbohydrate meal (green)

Outside of the UK e.g. in Sweden and America, the medical community is recognising the benefits of reducing carbohydrates. The American Diabetic Association has approved lowering carbohydrates since 2008. Unfortunately, in the UK, official dietary advice has been slow to catch up! Advice from health professionals continues to be ‘a balanced healthy diet’ including plenty of carbohydrate foods. Unfortunately, for people with diabetes, carbohydrate foods are not healthy! There are however, lots of delicious foods that you can eat Are you confused and don’t know what to think?

Try it yourself for a few weeks and monitor the effect. Here are some examples of what you can expect:

  • Improved blood sugar levels from when you reduce the carbohydrate foods
  • Increased feelings of fullness and weight loss
  • Reduced sugar cravings
  • Many people with bloating experience considerable improvements

Note for diabetics

Avoiding the carbohydrates that raise your blood sugar decreases your need for medication to lower it. Taking the same pre-low-carb diet dose of insulin might result in hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). You need to test your blood sugar frequently when starting this diet and adapt (lower) your medication. This should ideally be done with the assistance of your doctor or diabetes nurse. If you’re healthy or a diabetic treated either by diet alone or just with Metformin there is no risk of hypoglycemia.

If you would like some help and guidance with controlling blood sugar levels with your diet, then contact me on 07758 100727, or use a contact form.

 

 

Coleslaw

We all know that we need to be upping our veg intake, ideally aiming for about half of the plate. If time isn’t on your side, it seems easier to grab a ready prepared ‘salad’ from the shops e.g. Coleslaw. Here’s one that is one is mostly cabbage and oil, with only 14% carrot.

Ingredients0000001173413_L

Cabbage (47%), Rapeseed Oil, Carrot (14%), Water, Double Cream (Cows’ Milk) (3%), Sugar, Onion (2%), Pasteurised Barn Egg, Spirit Vinegar, White Wine Vinegar, Salt, Stabilisers: Guar Gum, Xanthan Gum; Acidity Regulator: Sodium Acetate; Mustard Seed.

 

Having grown up on my granny’s homemade coleslaw (usually served with lasagne and garlic bread!) to me, the shop bought stuff is massively inferior with an overrepresentation of cabbage. These days, I’ve adapted The Granny’s recipe to make it a bit healthier…………..the dressing is made with light mayonnaise or humous, natural yoghurt and a splash of vinegar.

When I need something incredibly quick, this is an easy way to get a super serving of veg. If I’m lazy, I’ll have it with some pumpkin/sunflower seeds (good fats) on top and maybe a couple of spoonfuls of left over chilli (protein) from the night before.

Here’s the recipe, it literally takes about 2 minutes:

about 1/4 white or red cabbage grated

image

Red cabbage, carrots and pumpkin seeds

2 grated carrots

1 tablespoon light mayonnaise/humus

1 tablespoon natural yogurt

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar (optional)

No nonsense. Just mix it all together.

1 minute muffin

 

Unknown copy 9These muffins are very quick and very easy. Low carbohydrate, high fibre, high in good fats, and high in protein. Add a little bit of honey/maple syrup/agave nectar/sweetener if you like (they can be a little bland without any sweetness!)

Flaxseed can be bought in most of the big supermarkets or health food shops (it is the same as ground linseeds – my Mum tells me they used to put linseed oil on horses tails to make them healthy and shiny!) These days, there is growing scientific evidence of the health benefits of flaxseed. I regularly recommend it to my IBS patients for constipation.

Benefits of flaxseed

  • 1/4 cup flaxseed
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon light vegetable oil, such as olive oil
  • optional sweetener of choice (1/2 teaspoon sugar/honey etc)
  1. 
In a coffee mug, stir together 1/4 cup of flax meal, 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder, sugar/honey/sweetener if using and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Be sure to use a coffee mug, not a cup.
  2. Add 1 egg and 1 tsp. of oil to the dry ingredients and mix well.
  3. Microwave the mug for 45 to 60 seconds.
  4. Pop the muffin out of the mug and enjoy.

Food combos that work! New research.

avocado for healthy fats & lettuce, herbs and tomatoes for vitamins

avocado for healthy fats & lettuce, herbs and tomatoes for vitamins

Researchers at King’s College London and the University of California have recently concluded that when olive oil and vegetables are eaten together, they form nitro fatty acids that help lower blood pressure – a risk factor for heart disease. Professor Philip Eaton, describes the chemical reaction of oil and vegetable as one of “nature’s protective mechanisms”.

This study helps us to understand why The Mediterranean Diet – a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, olive oil and fish – has long been associated with improved heart health.

3 more top food combinations:

Olive oil in a stir fry – Fat is necessary for the absorption of fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. The healthy fats from the olive oil, combined with the vitamins in veg provide is perfect for the absorption of these nutrients. If you’re confused about what oils and fats are healthy, look here. Other recipes that have these combos include granolaSuper Boost Salad and Cocoa Bars

16 peppers for a £1!

1 pepper has 300% your daily vitamin C

Red peppers in bolognaise: red peppers are high in vitamin C (as are tomatoes) helping your body to absorb the iron from beef. One pepper gives you 300% of your daily vitamin C needs!

 

A smoothie in the sun: Vitamin D is essential for your body to use

Strawberry milk

Strawberry milk

calcium from food to build strong bones, teeth and for muscles to work properly. The best source of vitamin D is the sun……get your arms in the suns rays for half an hour a day (with no sunscreen!), and combine with a dose of calcium from a smoothie made with milk (cow’s or a rice/almond milk fortified with calcium).