healthy

  1. Vitamin A Benefits

     
    Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin which can be found in two primary forms Retinol or beta-carotene.
    Retinol is found in animal products (dairy, meat and fish products) and I'm sure you would have seen it listed as the star ingredient on loads of anti-ageing creams. Beta-carotene comes from colourful fruit and vegetables. It needs to be converted to retinol by the body for it to be used. If you are taking vitamin A in capsule form the label will probably be called Vitamin A Palmitate.
     
    The most well known benefit of Vitamin A is eye health. I’m sure you have heard when you were a child that eating carrots will help you see in the dark…well it’s true! Carrots contain beta-carotene which keep your eyes healthy and helps prevent macular degeneration. Vitamin A improves eyesight as it is a critical component of the rhodopsin molecule (“a biological pigment found in the rods of the
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  2. Weekly Tip- Top 5 benefits of adding chia seeds to your diet

    Chia seeds are good for your digestive health
    Chia seeds contain about 10grams of fibre per 2 tablespoons which is nearly half your daily requirement of fibre! Because of the rich fibre content chia seeds do wonders for our digestive health. The fibre not only acts as a prebiotic feeding the good bacteria in our gut, but also helps promote
    regularity.
     
    Chia seeds are rich in antioxidants
    Chia seeds are a great way to get more antioxidants into your diet. Antioxidants are important in protecting our cells from free radical damage and inflammation which can lead a whole range of different illnesses and premature ageing!
     
    Chia seeds help improve heart health
    Chia seeds contain more omega-3’s than salmon gram for gram! Although it’s important to
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  3. Nutritious smoothie

    Smoothies can be an extremely healthy nutrient filled snack when made with the right ingredients. I make this smoothie nearly everyday for that added nutrient boost. It can even been enjoyed as a quick on the go breakfast!
     
    Ingredients
     
    1 handful frozen blueberrie
    1 handful frozen raspberries
    1/2 frozen banana
    1 teaspoon raw cacao powder
    1 teaspoon barley grass powder
    1 tablespoon hemp hearts
    1 tablespoon pumpkin seed powder
    2 tablespoons organic pure whey
    250ml milk of your choice
     
    Method
     
    Add all the ingredients to a blender, and blend until smooth. If the smoothie is too thick try adding another 50mls of milk.
     
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  4. Weekly Tip - Quinoa

    Quinoa is a seed from the Chenopodium quinoa plant. Over the years quinoa has become a healthy addition to many salads, and some even swap their oat porridge for quinoa porridge. Quinoa has a very impressive nutritional profile  and is actually a complete source of protein (meaning it contains all 20 amino acids.) Have a read below to learn about the top benefits of this tiny little seed.
     
    • Full of antioxidants - Quinoa has a large amount of antioxidants which have shown to beneficial in preventing heart disease, cancers, diabetes and inflammation.
    • Great for bone health - Quinoa contains manganese, magnesium and phosphorus which are all important nutrients when it comes to bone building and health.
    • Good for your gut - Quinoa contains prebiotics which is a type of fibre that feeds the probiotics (good bacteria in our gut) Quinoa helps the good bacteria in our gut produce butyrate which
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  5. Weekly Tip - Quick and Easy blueberry muffins

    Blueberries are a nutrient dense superfood. Packed full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Try these delicious muffins as an afternoon snack or on the go breakfast.
     
    Ingredients
     
    1 1/2 cups plain flour
    6 dates soaked in boiling water to soften
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1 tablespoon hemp hearts
    1 tablespoon chia seeds
    1/3 cup melted coconut oil
    1 egg at room temperature
    1/2 cup milk of your choice
    1 1/2cups blueberries 
     
    Method
     
    Pre heat oven to 180degrees and prepare muffin tin by greasing with butter 
    Soak the dates in boiling water for about 10minutes
    In a food processor add
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  6. Weekly Tip - 16 inflammation fighting foods

    Our diet is one of the best ways to get chronic inflammation under control and boost our health and well being too! Trying adding some of the below foods to your diet each day.
     
    • Green leafy vegetables - rich in antioxidants that restore cellular health.
    • Bok choy - robust antioxidants that scavenge free radicals
    • Celery - anti inflammatory properties that help improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels. excellent source of potassium.
    • Broccoli - vitamins, flavonoids and carotenoids which work to lower oxidative stress.
    • Green tea - full of antioxidants in particular catechins which prevent oxidative stress.
    • Beetroot - fights and repairs damage caused by inflammation
    • Blueberries
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  7. Weekly tip - Blueberries

    Blueberries are one of my favourite fruits and I’m lucky to be able to include them in my diet daily. Have a read below of why you should try adding to them to your diet as often as possible.
     
    Blueberries contain calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, zinc and vitamin K - which are all excellent nutrients for strengthening and increasing bone density.
     
    Blueberries are good for heart health - studies have shown that when eating blueberries (ideally daily) blood pressure can be lowered.
     
    The high fibre and antioxidants found in blueberries can help lower bad cholesterol. They also contain calcium, potassium and magnesium which can help in reducing blood pressure and can regulate the working of the heart muscle. 
     
    Studies have shown blueberries to help fight and protect certain cancers.
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  8. Matcha

    Matcha is made from the leaves of the same tea plant that regular tea comes from. The only difference is how they are grown, when the leaves are picked and how they are processed. Tea plants used to make matcha are usually shaded for 2weeks before picking to increase the chlorophyll levels. Once the leaves are picked they are then steamed, dried and finally ground into that fine green powder we all know as matcha.
     
    Matcha has more nutrients in it than regular tea as the whole leaf is ground. Matcha is full of antioxidants, in particular one type called Catechins. Studies have shown Catechins to be extremely powerful in preventing oxidative stress in our cells caused by free radicals. As mentioned in previous posts oxidative stress is the route cause of most chronic illnesses. In addition Catechins help regulate blood pressure, help with body fat loss in particular visceral fat (The bad fat surrounding our internal organs.)
     
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  9. Spinach, goats cheese and caramelized onion tart

    A delicious meal to be served with a leafy salad, or cut into small squares as a popular appetiser.

    Once all the ingredients are prepared its really quick to put together and only needs 20minutes in the over.

     

    Ingredients

    Caramelized onions (see below for ingredients)

    4 handfuls of spinach

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    1 garlic clove mashed

    1 tub of soft goats cheese

    1 roll of ready rolled puff pastry.

     

    Caramelized onion ingredients

    2 onions sliced

    1 tablespoon butter

    1/2 tablespoon sugar

    500ml water

     

    Method

    1. Add the sliced onions to a saucepan along with the butter, stir until butter is melted and coating the onions.
    2. Add the water and sugar and bring to a simmer.
    3. Leave to simmer for around 40minutes.
    4. Once all the water has boiled down stir the
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  10. Weekly tip - Calcium rich foods

    Calcium is the most abundant mineral in our body and unfortunately most of us aren’t getting enough from our daily diet! Calcium is mainly stored in our bones and teeth and released into our bloodstream when needed. Blood calcium plays a critical role in supporting many bodily functions as well as balancing pH levels. Symptoms of low calcium levels range from brittle bones, abnormal blood clotting and delay in children's growth and development.

    When we are born the amount of calcium we need slowly increases from about 200mg, as our body grows with children from age nine to early twenties needing around 1300mg a day. Adults both male and female need about 1000mg a day of calcium. As we age the amount of calcium we need increases again, especially for women.

    Another important time for an increase of calcium is during your second and third trimester and when breastfeeding.

    To make sure you a

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