Being fit and healthy isn't about downing protein shakes, spending hours in the gym and following a strict diet. It's so much simpler than that, but with the media constantly spoon feeding us information about the latest diet, exercise and super pill, the water has become murky and it's hard to identify what 'healthy' is.
Obviously the lion's share of my life has been dedicated to training, pushing my body to its physical limits and enduring all that comes with that lifestyle. Not only has this always helped me stay in shape, it has also helped me keep a clear head, to focus my mind when all around me may be chaotic. This, thankfully, has served me well in the last month.
I tend to skip the ice in smoothies in cold weather. If I'm using frozen fruit then I often skip the ice anyway, but the idea at this time of year is to make it more appealing and easier to swallow whilst layered up and shivering by the fire.
Five is not enough. That is because vegetables are packed with all kinds of health promoting qualities much more so than any other food. This means that they really should form the bulk of our diet. I am not talking here about a vegetarian diets, I am talking about all diets.
What's in a name? Well, if the name is 'chicken nuggets', it could be up to 14 different ingredients, according to research published yesterday by the University of Nottingham.
Despite my decision to remain laidback over other people's choices, I've been surprised to see I was experiencing the reverse: Healthy Shaming. In other words, being shamed for my healthy choices, asking to see allergen menus and for well... being 'a bit boring.' So here's the worst 'healthy shaming' phrases I've heard recently...
Just delicious, accessible food that all generations can get stuck into preparing and eating together. That happens to be sugar free. Oh, and ideally involves only a single mixing bowl or oven dish so very little washing up (you've got to dream, haven't you?)
These pumpkin gnocchi are so moreish and simple to make. They start off a little tedious but once you get the hang of them, they really are quick to have ready. I've been making this at least once a week since I started having it...
A meat eater who eats some meat and lots of fruit and vegetables will have a better diet than a vegetarian who lives on pasta and cereals. Either way, the best diet is one where vegetables make up the bulk of what is eaten.
As the January blues begin to kick in, evenings spent vegetating on the sofa with a box of chocolates, Christmas TV, and a third glass of wine feel like a distant memory. Once the festive cheer subsides, the extra pounds start to feel less comfortable and many people think drastic action is the only way forward, committing to New Year diets that they just can't stick with.
What if I said that there was a way to take better control of the foods you eat, to really understand what you can and can't eat as an individual eat? What if I said that you could have better insight about the foods or ingredients that affect you if at all?
It's hard to motivate yourself to go outside in grotty weather, but we are group creatures. Socialising lifts the spirits. Invite friends round to watch comedy shows on TV. Or tap into your inner child by going as a group - male as well as female - to a shopping centre or department store to have free makeovers at the beauty counters.
If you are looking for a new way to use up your ripe bananas, trythis Banana Peanut Butter Ice Cream cake. I always have loads of frozen banana chunks in my freezer, whether it's for a smoothie or this delicious cake. The recipe is super simple to make and no one will ever know there are only a few ingredients involved. This recipe really is magical, and healthy too!
Hopefully the periods of "I'm on a diet" or "I'm on a 30 days cleanse in January" have faded away so we can focus on eating real food which is actually good for you. Rather restricting ourselves and not eating certain things, let's focus on finding balance. Balance between kale & chocolate.
I've been working on this recipe for quite some time as I wanted to get it just right, not only for you guys but for myself too! This is because I absolutely adore Sweet and Sour Crispy Chicken.
Before adopting a vegetarian diet a year ago I had a number of concerns. Would I be getting the right vitamins? Would I get bored of eating the same things? Would I always be hungry? Would I be judged by others? The journey has been interesting and rewarding. Here are some of the things I have learned along the way.