Spotlight on Ashwagandha

As I sit here with a bad case of the sniffles I only have myself to blame. My usual morning ritual of vitamins and juicing has gone out the window as of late, and with what seems to be a sudden shift to winter temperatures my immunity has decided to crumble.

For a few months now I’ve been hearing all about the benefits of Ashwagandha, and have been meaning to get my hands on some. The benefits of this superfood are many and varied, one of which is it’s purported to be a fantastic immunity booster. Although I’ve already succumbed to the dreaded lurgy, I’m keen to get on the Ashwagandha train ASAP and reap all its health giving benefits before winter well and truly sets in.

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Nice Cream!

Who doesn’t love a cold, creamy cone or gelato on a hot summer’s day? A refreshing treat to cool you off, an ice cream break is a time to embrace the indulgences and joys of summer. Unfortunately commercial ice-creams are often packed with E numbers and overloaded with sugar and a synthetic in flavour. If you’re looking to make your icy sweet fix a little more nutritious (yes, nutritious!) then why not make your own ice-cream this summer. It is a great way to get kids in the kitchen too!

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Cherry Cheer!

Everyone loves the shiny, big, black, sweet cherries in our markets and supermarkets right now in Mallorca. Kids adore eating them (and hanging them over their ears!). They are easy to add to meriendas, picnics or just a big bowl of them on the kitchen table.

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Fun with Fermentation

Fermentation is “the chemical breakdown of a substance by bacteria, yeasts, or other microorganisms, typically involving effervescence and the giving off, of heat.” The process of fermentation converts compounds, like a carbohydrate, including vegetables and sugar, to carbon dioxide and alcohol to an organic acid.

Fermentation brings out amazing health benefits in certain foods, it helps increase digestion and bioavailability of nutrients, manage and prevent disease, including H. pylori infection, cancer, liver disease, arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and lactose intolerance.

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The Holy Grail of Honey

As a born and raised Kiwi it wasn’t uncommon to find a jar of Manuka honey in the pantry at home. Mostly it was just slathered onto a piece of buttered toast without any thought about its health properties. All I knew was that it tasted damn good! These days it’s widely accepted as a wonder product for health and beauty. Kourtney Kardashian swears by it, feeding her kids a spoonful at the first sign of a sniffle, and she’s even a brand ambassador for natural skincare line Manuka Doctor Skincare.

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10 Reasons To Add Bee Pollen To Your Diet

You may see these little golden crunchy granules garnishing your instagram worthy smoothies and salads at healthy cafes, but were you aware that they are a real nutritional powerhouse? In fact bee pollen contains almost all of the nutrients required by the human body to thrive!

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My 2 Favourite Dahls

A Dahl (Dal, daal, dail or dhal) is the term used in India for dried, split pulses – lentils, peas and beans. It can be prepared in the form or a stew or a soup and is amongst the most important staple foods in South Asian countries. Dahl also has become a staple food in plant-based diets – versatile, simple and nourishing as a meal or side dish, or part of a Thali. Here in Mallorca we can include local market produce – seasonal vegetables and herbs to give it a personal twist (east meets west!).

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Much Ado About Matcha

No doubt you’ve heard of the frothy, green concoction that is matcha tea. So much so that you might have jumped on the matcha bandwagon quite some time ago, only to have jumped off in favour of this months latest green drink craze (celery juice anyone?). But I’m here to encourage you to pick your matcha habit back up again and make it a lasting one!

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New Year Nourishment

When it comes to detoxing after the holidays it is important to include foods into your diet that keep you feeling full but also support the liver, and are rich in amino-acids and vital nutrients. Try this very simple warming, cleansing and tasty meal.

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The Super-Powered Pomegranate

In November, here in Mallorca the markets and supermarkets are abundant with local pomegranates. Often a cream and pink colour on the outside, yet bursting inside with ruby red seeds (or arils).

They are truly a superfood, and as they are in season now, they are an excellent immune booster as we move into the winter months.  Eating foods in season is so crucial to our health, yet so often forgotten these days.

Pomegranates can simply be sprinkled over meals, juiced or eaten as a snack – beautiful and so nutritious!!

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A Modern Martial Art for everyone

When my children were invited to try out Choi Kwang Do (CKD from here on in), I accepted the offer enthusiastically. I was already a fan of martial arts, having done a little karate myself in my younger years. However, what I didn’t expect upon arrival was to be given the chance to join in too!

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Your Guide to Intermittent Fasting

There seem to be two types of people in the world. The ones that always wake up each morning with a ravenous hunger, and the ones who need a few hours to get their bearings before developing any type of appetite. I fall into the latter. Unfortunately I grew up in the era where it was pummelled into us that ‘breakfast is the most important meal of the day’ and subsequently forced myself to ingest something that constituted a balanced meal before doing anything else. But now things have had a shake up! Intermittent fasting is the new craze, and before you say ‘oh no, another fad’, this one actually has some merit. Here’s the lowdown.

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Optimum Nutrition in Autumn

This time of year in Mallorca the markets are filled with pungent and colourful autumnal foods.  We are usually lucky enough to see beautiful, crisp blue skies during the days and have cosy evenings by the fire to enjoy all your favorite comfort foods.

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Living Without Screens

This summer I did something unthinkable. It was in one of those ‘Mummy’s about to lose her cool’ moments. Thankfully not so much that I regret the consequence of my actions. Far from regret, I feel I’ve transformed my house into a happier home because of it. And all I did was unplug the television, carry it downstairs and plonk it in the garage.

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A Post Summer Cleanse

It’s almost the end of September which means a change of season. We love Autumn here in Mallorca as it brings cooler days and nights, clear blue skies, less tourists, cosier evenings with yummy comfort foods! Continue Reading…

Nourish The Kids

When I became a parent, I was thrown in at the deep end. My first born William arrived nine weeks early and I’m not ashamed to say I was a little unprepared. In those first few weeks, I took each day as it came and learned to deal with situations as they arose using that natural motherly instinct we possess. And that’s how I’ve continued…

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5 Nourishing Waters to Keep you Hydrated in the Heat

This heat in Mallorca at the moment is not only exhausting but very dehydrating!

Are you getting bored of drinking water to keep hydrated? It can be tempting to reach for the sugar-laden or alcoholic options to quench that thirst but why not try to nourish your body with flavoured water instead?

Pop to the local market and stock up on herbs and fruit to pep up the water to make it more appealing for you, your family and visitors!

You can freestyle with the 5 suggestions below. All you have to do is add to 1-2 litres of filtered water, chill and enjoy!

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gelato Mallorca

An ‘Il Gelataio’ in Palma

‘Tis the season of ice cream! This month I’m paying tribute to ice cream or to be precise, gelato – Italian ice cream. Though it may not be the most nourishing fuel for our bodies, ice cream is a favourite summer-time treat for kids and adults alike and every now and then there is no harm in indulging in something scrummy!

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Juice

Get your Juice Fix in Mallorca

We all now know that green equals good when it comes to what you put in your body, which is why the trend of drinking your greens in juice form has become so popular. Rich in antioxidants, your green juice habit will have your energy levels up and your skin glowing in no time. Lucky for us on Mallorca we have some amazing juice bars and eateries that serve up these healthy concoctions, and also manage to make them taste delicious!

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black and white cows in dutch meadow with blue sky

Meat-less March

The Meatless Monday movement is an easy, weekly reminder to take saturated fat off our plates and replace it with nutrient-rich fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains.

Following on from last month, I will focus on how making a slight change to our eating habits can not only impact our health, but also impact our planet – in a really BIG way.

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Vegan vegetarian

How to Optimize your Diet as a Vegan or Vegetarian

Plant-based diets can be beneficial for your health. Vegan and vegetarian eating is becoming a way of life for many.  No matter your age or reason to stop eating animal products, it is important to make sure that you’re getting enough protein, iron, and B vitamins and sustaining a nutrient dense diet.

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Healthy food clean eating selection

Enjoy healthy, guilt free eating in 2018

We are well into the New Year and I’m sure like most, you have tried to start the year as healthily as possible. It is always difficult to stick to New Years resolutions, particularly regarding your health.  This year, try to make these small changes to your eating habits to guarantee lasting and positive effects throughout 2018.

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Gut health

Are you feeding your microbiome?

Daylight savings is just one of the changes that can bring you down slightly. Like me, if you suffer  from that sluggish, unenthused feeling when the days get shorter and colder, enjoying and incorporating certain foods in your diet during these times can be a way to help change your mental state of mind and wellbeing.

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Eating seasonally in Mallorca

How to Eat With the Season In Mallorca

How lucky are we to live on this little Balearic island and feel the forceful beauty of each season?

Santa Maria Market in the middle of Mallorca is made for Sundays. Open from 7am to 2pm, it is a beautiful place to really appreciate autumn in all its mighty flow. Continue Reading…

Recipes

Creamy Polenta Breakfast

One of my all time favourite  moments on my retreats is breakfast. After getting up and going into an invigorating qi gong or yoga class, you come out buzzing with energy and a healthy glow feeling genuinely hungry.

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Chocolate Avocado Mousse

Now for a cheeky and healthy treat! We all love chocolate. This recipe is so quick and easy and unbelievably tasty! It can be served like a gourmet dessert – very impressive, yet still cleansing!  Crack some local sea salt over it with sliced Manacor strawberries from the market – a winner every time!

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Banana and Granola

Banana and tahini granola

As I start preparation for a yoga retreat my first recipe to bake off is this delicious granola. Everyone loves it!

It’s crunchy and not too sweet like many packaged or other home-made granola’s. It keeps for weeks and is a perfect breakfast staple. Sprinkle it over yoghurt or snack on it with fruit – Autumn offers us local pomegranate, toad skin melon, citrus fruits, figs and grapes, or stew up some apples or pears for a warm breakfast.

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Nutrition and Stress

The benefits of food and nutrition for stress relief

I previously explored how yoga and meditation could assist with stress reduction but another technique for controlling stress lies in the foods we eat. We must eat to stay alive and what we choose to put into our bodies for nourishment is up to us. Everything that enters our mouth –  food, drink, smoke and pills, can reduce or increase stress. We can consume nutrient rich foods or we can choose nutrient empty foods. We can create a balancing, calming or de-stressing effect or we can create an irritating, stimulating and stressful effect. The choice is ours.

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green smoothie apple spinach cucumber juice

Juice or Cleanse

Juice or Cleanse

Can drinking juice daily offer the same health benefits as a long-term cleanse or a juice retreat ? Does a juice a day really keep the doctor away? Or do we need to undertake a complete juice cleanse to achieve the ultimate pick-me-up?

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Fresh organic vegetable and fruit juices

Why Juice?

Following on from her first article on the topic, Nutritional Therapist Suzanne Garaty quickly explains the benefits of treating juice as intravenous nutrition. Juicing is a wonderful way to expedite the delivery of superfoods to your bloodstream – it’s a fact.

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Juice made from vegetables

Juice for life

Suzanne Garaty is a Nutritional Therapist, food coach and natural chef. In the first of our three-part series on the benefits of juicing, she explains how what we put in our bodies today, gives us an opportunity to discard damaged cells from the past, and start with a clean slate.

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