Foods

4 05, 2018

Easy, Delicious, Nutrient-Dense, Lunch Recipe

2018-05-04T13:29:53+00:00 By |Ailments, Foods, Nutrition|

It’s so easy to grab a sandwich or sausage roll at lunch time, especially with our busy lives and eating on the run.

The problem with this is that consuming too many wrong types of sugars and carbs is not good for us, since it adds to inflammation, congestion in the body and can affect weight. What’s more, having such lunches displaces much healthier alternatives.

If you can make a switch to healthy lunches, it’s just another nudge redirecting your health into the future.

For example a soup based on bone broth, which is an excellent way to boost digestion, brain health and immunity, is an ideal lunch. Bone broth is a wonderful remedy in its own right, packed with nutrients, amino acids, collagen and gelatin. Combining the broth with turmeric, chili, vegetables and coconut oil makes a wonderful elixir or tonic for the system. When we prepare a meal, such as this, every ingredient is health-promoting and we are not filling up on empty calories or un-nutritious and potentially damaging foods.

With a little bit of planning we can turn our lunches in a powerhouse of nutrition.

My favourite thing to have for lunch, because I know how nourishing and revitalizing it is, is homemade soup. You can cook a big batch of soup and freeze it into portion sizes, and then just heat it up as you need it.

The basis of a healthy soup is good quality, homemade bone broth or vegetable stock. Click here for how to make bone broth and to find out more information on why it is so important for our health.

POWERHOUSE SOUP RECIPE

Ingredients:

Bone broth
7 carrots roughly chopped (you can use other vegetables, such as pumpkin or butternut squash)
½ cauliflower roughly chopped
2 leeks roughly chopped
1 large onion diced
5 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 teaspoon of turmeric
2 tablespoons of coconut oil
1 dried birds eye chilli (more to taste)
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
Sea salt to taste

Method:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a large saucepan.
  2. Add garlic, leeks and onion and cook on a medium heat until soft.
  3. Add carrots, cauliflower or any preferred vegetables and stir into the mixture briefly.
  4. Add turmeric and black pepper and stir briefly.
  5. Pour in the broth so that it covers the vegetables well, put the lid on, and turn heat down so that the soup is simmering. Allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.
  6. Take off the heat and blend with a blending stick.

The beauty of this recipe, is that you can adjust it as you like, swap and change ingredients, but always using a healthy broth as a base. Cooking from scratch can seem demanding, but once you get into the swing of it, it is fun and so rewarding. What’s more, cooking in large batches means you’ll have plenty of healthy meals stacked up in the freezer.

As always if you have any questions about your health please write to me and I’m very happy to call you back.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

4 05, 2018

Bone Broth Health Benefits

2018-05-04T13:08:00+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition, Vitamins|

Bone broth is not only cheap and easy to make, it is actually packed with valuable minerals and gelatin that are easily absorbed by the body with profound affects.

Bone broth promotes proper digestion by supporting the healing and sealing of the gut. It also helps to inhibit infections, such as colds and flus; fights inflammation and pain, such as in the joints, and promotes strong healthy hair, nails and bones.

Bone broth is an old-time staple. Traditionally homes would have bones simmering away on the cooker top and it was a way of life. Broth would be used in soups, stews or drunk on it on its own – increasing the density of nutrition and goodness in any meal it was added to. The loss of this tradition is just another example of how our diets have changed in recent time. The diets of our ancestors (who experienced much less serious disease) was packed with unprocessed, organic whole foods and bone broth. There’s a lot to be said of reintroducing this as much as possible.

Leaky gut is one of the most common things I see in practice. It is in fact an important underlying factor in a wide range of health problems, from allergies and autoimmune disorders to depression, migraines, lymphatic congestion and skin problems. Collagen, which is in bone broth, has a soothing and healing action that promotes the sealing of the gut lining.

The best way to get bone broth is to make it yourself. Using the carcass of a cooked chicken, fish bones, or bones left over from any meal is a perfect way to do it – or you can often find the butchers will have some very cheaply. If you can use bones from organic or grass fed animas this is ideal as it will likely have the most gel. This is something we make in my family most weeks because I know what a cheap and easy way it is to boost what my family get from their meals.

COOKING THE STOCK

Put the bones in a large saucepan or crock pot and cover with water. Add a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and leave to stand for half an hour before putting it on the heat; this gives the vinegar time to help draw the nutrients out of the bones.

Next roughly chop one or two carrots, an onion, and perhaps some celery or some other suitable vegetables that you may want to use up, such as leeks. You can also add herbs if you have any to hand, such as thyme, bay leaves, oregano. It’s not an exact science!

Bring the broth to the boil, skim off the scum on the surface, lower the heat so it can simmer really gently for 12-24 hours. You can always turn it off an night and resume the simmer in the morning. You can also use a slow cooker if you prefer.

When it’s ready you can strain it, put it in containers and use it make soups, risottos and stews, or drink it. It will keep in the fridge for several days, but will also freeze well.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

16 04, 2018

Repercussions of a Rundown Nervous System

2018-04-16T10:20:05+00:00 By |Ailments, Foods, Nutrition|

80% of the people that come and see me have a rundown nervous system

avocado health benefitsIt is without doubt one of the most common things I diagnose with iridology and in a consultation.

The reason why it is so important is because it is the communication system of the body – quite similar to the wiring that exists in any machine. When the nervous system gets rundown it acts in a sponge-like way soaking up and robbing energy from other parts of the body.

Conversely, when we don’t have a rundown nervous system energy and vitality can flow throughout the body – aiding all the parts of the body to which it is communication with. This includes digestion, circulation, endocrine system and of course and probably most importantly how we feel mentally.

Signs of Rundown Nervous System

A rundown nervous system can affect each and every one of us in a different way, but the most common are complaints of fatigue, depression, anxiety, stress, irritability, lack of motivation, poor mental clarity and concentration (mental fog). In fact, it has an insidious nature with knock on affects across other parts of the body, which are not so obviously related to the nervous system, such as digestive disorders, acid reflux, constipation, and many more. In such cases, the immediate assumption can be made by practitioners that the problem lies in these specific parts of the body, yet correcting the nervous system as the underlying cause can sometimes be a simple answer, especially when other signs of a rundown nervous system are present.

What Causes a Rundown Nervous System?

There are two basic causes:

  1. Poor nutritional status:
    Often people say to me, “I eat well, don’t eat junk food, why am i rundown and feel this way?” one of the problems with our food these days is that it contains about 60% less nutritional value that of our grandparents. Another factor affecting nutritional status is our ability to absorb nutrients out of our food. Today, generally we eat far more sugar and take a lot more pharmaceutical medicines, such as antibiotics and painkillers, than our predecessors, and these are just two examples of how nutrient absorption is affected. Higher quantities of stimulants, such as coffee, tea, energy drinks, can further drain the body of nutrients. Alcohol also has a depleting affect on our nutritional status. Many factors weave together to determine how much nutrition we absorb from our food. So even if you decide to eat a healthy, organic diet, if you digestive system is not absorbing the nutrients efficiently much of the goodness will be lost. So this is often an area that needs addressing too.
  2. Stress:
    High levels of stress, emotional trauma, and other mental demands, drain the nervous system. (Of course there can be other factors to take into account when looking at how someone is feeling emotionally, such as adrenal fatigue or thyroid conditions.)

The problem can seem like the chicken and the egg scenario, whereby emotional problems can cause a rundown nervous system, in the same way that a rundown nervous system can cause emotional problems.

Nutrition to Help Boost the Nervous System

Diet of course will play a key role in ensuring your body has the nutritional tools and equipment it needs to operate optimally, this is despite the quality of food not being as it used to be.  Boosting your nervous system with some of the following foods is a good place to start:

  • Avocados

  • Acorn squash

  • Bananas

  • Spinach

  • Sweet potatoes

  • Almonds

  • Dried pumpkin seeds

  • Swiss chard

There are varying degrees of a rundown nervous system, and I find that supplementing with key nutrients is usually also necessary – contact me to find out what specifically you need as this will vary from person to person, depending on one’s needs and what medication a person may be on.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

9 04, 2018

Cinnamon Health Benefits

2018-04-09T21:08:41+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition|

Food as medicine in your daily life is an exciting way to take your health by the reigns in a stress free and empowering way

Cinnamon is another great example of how you can do this. It’s easy to incorporate into your daily life through cooking, and has a fantastic warming, sweet flavour.

Cinnamon has been used medicinally for thousands of years and is still used in many cultures today on a daily basis. It dates back 4,000 years to ancient Egypt where it was considered a rare and valuable spice. As time has gone on we have learnt more and more about this wonderful spice, with a great body of research supporting the medicinal claims of cinnamon that our ancestors have known about for centuries.

Benefits of Consuming Cinnamon

Antioxidant properties:

Cinnamon is packed with protective antioxidants that reduce free radical damage and ranks highly when compared to other powerful herbs and spices such as garlic and oregano.

Anti-inflammatory properties:

The antioxidants also promote anti-inflammatory effects. This in turn may help lower the risk of heart disease, cancer and cognitive decline. In addition it can be used to help with pain, reducing swelling and inflammation.

Heart health:

Cinnamon is associated with a lowering of bad cholesterol levels, high triglyceride levels and high blood pressure – all factors that suggest it is good for heart health.

Blood sugar rebalancer:

Cinnamon is renowned for helping lower blood sugar levels and is appears to be beneficial in relation to glucose control. It  also helps protect against insulin insensitivity, which is important for keeping blood sugar levels balanced.

Cognitive and brain function:

Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds are associated with helping to protect the brain from forming neurological disorders, eg Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Cancer risk:

Cinnamon is a powerful antioxidant, and as such may help protect against several processes associated with cancerous growth, such as DNA damage and cell mutation. There is ongoing research into Cinnamon and its promising natural anti-cancer properties.

Infections & viruses:

Cinnamon has natural anti-microbial, antibiotic, antifungal and antiviral properties. Cinnamon is used in many cultures to naturally help fight harmful infections and viruses.

Candida protection:

I’ve used Cinnamon with many clients to help treat Candida overgrowth, as part of a larger protocol. It has powerful antifungal properties.

Buying Cinnamon

In shops you will find there are two main types of Cinnamon you can buy easily: Ceylon cinnamon (aka true cinnamon) and Cassia cinnamon which is cheaper and more commonly used and available. They are interchangeable in cooking. However, there is a big difference between the two, which is the coumarin content.  I recommend you seek out and use the Ceylon cinnamon which I believe has greater health benefits and is not compromised by a high coumarin content. Organic is also recommended so that you can ensure purity.

Caution over coumarins

Coumarins are blood thinning agents found in many plants. High intake of coumarins can cause too low a blood thinning affect. Cassia cinnamon has 1,200 x more coumarins and needs to be used in moderation in comparison to the Ceylon Cinnamon. Consuming large amounts of coumarins over a period of time are thought to be damaging to the liver and kidney. This is why I would always recommend sticking with the slightly more expensive Ceylon cinnamon when using it medicinally.

How much to take?

Including small amounts of cinnamon regularly in your diet is the best way to harness the benefits of this wonderful spice. A little bit goes a long way. Just half a teaspoon of Ceylon cinnamon a day can have a positive impact on blood sugar levels, digestion, immunity and more.

Research indicates that higher doses help with reducing risks of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases, but taking higher dosages (eg cinnamon extract supplements or using cinnamon essential oil) should be done under guidance as it is possible to take too much, which in turn can interfere with other medicines and medical conditions. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, have diabetes, have liver disease, or just had surgery speak to your doctor first to avoid complications.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

3 04, 2018

What Do You Eat for Breakfast?

2018-04-03T14:52:42+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition|

Start the Day with this Healthy Breakfast Recipe

It’s very easy to dismiss breakfast as being unimportant. However, directing your health into the future hinges on your daily eating and lifestyle habits, and this starts with what you do first thing in the morning.

For many years I’ve been trying to work out what is an ideal breakfast, not only for me, but also my clients. I know so many just reach for a cup of coffee (caffeine), a piece of toast with jam (sugar), cereals (more sugar) and maybe an orange juice as they race out the door. Or very commonly, people have nothing at all. This is often worse as it can result in no food going into your system between dinner the previous night and lunch the next day (as much as 16-17 hours with no food.) This long gap with no food results in  blood sugar swings. These blood sugar swings can have a number of effects, such as difficulty sleeping at night, tiredness after eating meals, adrenaline when we don’t need it, and more.

Breakfast Recipe

Try a blend of two raw good quality eggs, unprocessed coconut milk, banana. To this you can add a protein powder ( whey does contain lactose or you could try a pea protein), such things as chia seeds, flaxseed, or anything else that you like, such as other fruits (eg berries). This combination will give you healthy fats and good protein. You can also add some turmeric paste for extra benefits. If you are trying to lose weight I don’t suggest you add the banana, as it is high carbohydrate. The great thing about a breakfast like this is that generally it should keep hunger away until lunch time as well as providing a nutritious start to the day.

I suggest using a hand blender to mix it altogether, as this is easy to wash afterwards, and will make the process simple.

If you can start your day with exercise, followed by breakfast all the better. Going for a 30 minute walk is fine. I appreciate this is not always possible.

Small, meaningful changes to your daily routine, can have a profound effect. And starting your day like this is a great habit to get into.

If you have any questions please let me know – I’m always very interested to hear about how things are going.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

27 03, 2018

Your Health Plan

2018-03-27T12:56:24+00:00 By |Ailments, Cancer, Foods, Nutrition|

Directing Your Health Into the Future

100 years ago acute infectious diseases were the biggest health threat people faced. Fast forward to the present day and health issues have turned on their head, with the prevention and control of chronic illnesses being a key problem.

Naturopaths have a unique role, which GPs tend not to fill because of limited time in appointments and generally not approaching illness prevention from a lifestyle standpoint.

An example of this is chronic pain, which now affects a large proportion of the adult population, and for many this means pharmaceutical pain management. It’s now believed that the prescription opioid epidemic is the leading cause of death among adults under 50 years old living in the America. A Naturopathic approach to chronic pain is very different and drug free.

You have to be the biggest upholder of your own health if you want to live the best and healthiest life.

Good health and prevention of serious illness is not just a case of hoping that you don’t become the next statistic. It starts with you, your lifestyle and your home. What you eat and drink can play a very important role and is an integral part of the jigsaw of good health. How much sleep you have, stress management, exercise, these are all things that contribute to the tapestry of good health.

The American Cancer Society states: “More than half of all cancer deaths could be prevented by making healthy choices like not smoking, staying at a healthy weight, eating right, keeping active, and getting recommended screening tests.” Eating right and giving your body the nutritional tools and equipment it needs is vital for good health.

CORNERSTONES OF A HEALTHY DIET

What you eat and drink plays a vital role in your health and that of your family. Here are some simple guidelines to kickstart your health through diet. If you can follow these I think you will enjoy the experience and get a lot out of it.

Doing this now can mean you have a happier, healthier life in the future.

FRESH & WHOLEFOODS

Cooking from scratch with fresh and wholefoods and avoiding processed and convenience foods is a really important step. By doing this you can avoid additives, preservatives, cheap oils and sugars, and many potential hazards. You know exactly what is in your meal.

HERBS & SPICES

Cook with fresh herbs and spices regularly. Things like rosemary, parsley, turmeric, chilies all have powerful properties that are pro-health and well-being. What’s more they add vibrance and flavour to your cooking.

FATS

Include plenty of healthy fats in your diet. Fats need to be taken in a balanced ratio. These days people tend to have far too much Omega 6 from rapeseed/canola/sunflower/vegetable oils, and not enough Omega 3 and Omega 9. Fat plays an important part in having a healthy nervous and circulatory system.

PROTEIN

Protein forms the building blocks of life, but don’t over do it. Too much protein, like anything else, can have an adverse affect.

ORGANIC

If you can manage to get organic food into your diet so much the better. Unfortunately, farming practices and processes involved in processed foods are increasingly troublesome. An example of this is farmed fish.

If you would like to work out how you can implement a healthy, lifestyle plan and get your health on track, get in touch so I can help you with that.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

8 03, 2018

Turmeric: Benefits, Uses, Research

2018-03-08T10:52:24+00:00 By |Ailments, Cancer, Foods, Nutrition|

More people than ever are turning to the ancient orange spice, which has over 100 therapeutic uses

Turmeric has been the focus of much media attention and is one of the most researched plants in existence, for good reason.

It has been hailed as the latest super herb with reports about its use in the battle against Cancer, Alzheimer’s and Dementia, obesity, heart disease, depression, stress, atherosclerosis, arthritis and pain, and more.

The reason why this herb has so much attention is because of its powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and DNA-protecting properties.

It has a long history, 5,000 years, of been used medicinally and as a culinary ingredient in India.

Tumeric’s Active Ingredient

The medicinal compound curcumin, which is found in Turmeric, is the ingredient that is gaining most attention because of its powerful medicinal properties. Turmeric also contains high amounts of manganese, iron, fiber, vitamin B6, potassium, vitamin C and magnesium.  The anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin has been shown to be so effective that is has been compared in its usefulness to prescription medications, with the added bonus of coming without toxic side effects.

A Special Look at Tumeric/Curcumin and Cancer

Curcumin has more evidence-based literature supporting its anti-cancer capabilities compared to other nutrients. Many studies have been done, and while more conclusive evidence is still being sought, the research is promising.

Cancer Prevention: Cancer Research UK talks about cancer prevention on its site, “The main active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin or diferuloyl methane, which laboratory studies have shown does have anticancer effects on cancer cells. A phase I clinical trial looked at giving curcumin to 25 patients with precancerous changes in different organs. This study seemed to show that curcumin could stop the precancerous changes becoming cancer. Research has also shown that there are low rates of certain types of cancer in countries where people eat curcumin at levels of about 100mg to 200mg a day over long periods of time. But currently there is no conclusive research evidence to show that turmeric or curcumin can prevent or treat cancer.”

How to Take Turmeric

One of the issues with curcumin and turmeric is it’s poor bioavailability, meaning that the body needs helps with absorbing and assimilating it, which is an essential step in getting the most out of this herb.

Consumed alone or raw, curcumin has poor bioavailability. However, there are simple ways to improve absorption, such as:

  • Adding piperine (black pepper), which can increase absorption of curcumin by 2,000%. The liver actively tries to get rid of the curcumin. By adding even just a pinch of pepper, this helps to suppress this process, allowing curcumin levels in the bloodstream to rise. Traditionally, turmeric is eaten with pepper in curries.
  • Combining with a healthy oil, such as coconut oil, means that the curcumin can be directly absorbed into the bloodstream through the lymphatic system, bypassing the liver, allowing it to stay for longer in the body.
  • Heat it up to help activate it. When cooking, and Turmeric is heated up, it becomes more bioavailable.

You can include turmeric powder or turmeric root in your daily diet, or you can take a Turmeric supplement. Taking the whole herb in it’s natural form, is as a general rule what I prefer rather than taking extracts. The curcumin content of Turmeric is about 3%, which is significantly lower than the amounts used in most of the research and trials, which is why supplementing is an option some people opt for with specific conditions. If you want to take Turmeric for a specific medical condition then contact me – because there are different ways to take Turmeric that suit different conditions.

My preference however, for general wellbeing and health is to include this spice in your daily life. When cooking, you can make a paste by heating the turmeric with coconut oil and water, and adding black pepper, which you can store in the fridge and add to recipes, smoothies or yogurt. You can add Turmeric powder or root to soups, curries, vegetables, teas, etc. There are hundreds of interesting ways you can combine Turmeric into your cooking. As an example, including 1/2-1 teaspoon a day of powdered Turmeric in your diet is well suited to many people.

Whether you are having turmeric root, powder or supplements, I always recommend you go for organic, because of the potential for additives and treatments that kitchen spices sometimes go through. Keep it pure and organic.

Precautions

Contact me if you are interested to add Turmeric to your regimen. There are times when Turmeric shouldn’t be used, such as if you have gallstones or bile duct dysfunction or if you are on certain medications or treatments. Pregnant women shouldn’t use it without their doctors’ approval. Piperine, from fresh ground black pepper, will increase the absorbency of other substances in your stomach – so if you are on regular medications, you may experience a higher absorbency rate than intended for those drugs – please check with your doctor in relation to this.

Future Health

Many of my clients come to me with worries about things like cancer prevention and questions about how to protect their memory into the future, or how to deal with pain. Turmeric may offer a simple defense and is well worth looking into.

One of the things I really like about Turmeric is that it is very easy and low cost for people to incorporate it into their daily lives through diet. Just this one simple lifestyle change can potentially have profound affects.

If you have any questions or would like to find out more please get in touch.

30 11, 2017

Are Carbs Bad for Us?

2017-11-30T21:22:36+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition|

Carbohydrates get a bad rap, not just because of their association with weight gain, but also chronic health problems

Despite the negativity, carbs are essential. Which carbs are best for us is something I am often asked and it’s well worth knowing.

Some foods are higher in carbs than others and the higher the carb content the more sugar. Excess sugar gets converted to fat, causes inflammation and increases blood acidity. These are major precursors to chronic disease. The worst carbs are processed or refined ‘simple carbs’.

Simple Carbs

Simple carbs, particularly those in processed or refined foods, are sugars dumped into the body, which head straight for your bloodstream and spike blood sugar levels. They have virtually no nutritional value in them. In  fact, they drain the body of nutrition because they need more nutrients to digest them than they contain. Examples are refined sugar, biscuits, cakes, soft drinks, doughnuts, common breads, pasta and pastries, and the list goes on.

Complex Carbs

Complex carbs take the body longer to digest, so sugars will not spike blood sugar levels in the way simple carbs do. They have much higher levels of important nutrition, such as vitamins and minerals, as well as more fibre.

Examples of healthy, complex carbs are following. Let me know if you have any questions and I can help you as each of us have different demands, such as work, age and health.

  • Sweet potato
  • Potato
  • Turnips
  • Swede
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots

These can be prepared in many interesting and different ways, such as cauliflower prepared to be like rice, carrot noodles, zucchini spaghetti and broccoli ‘rice’.

To summarize, we need carbohydrates, but focus on complex carbs please.

Low Carb Diet and Weight Loss

When we hear of a ‘low carb diet’ it is the simple carbs we want to avoid. These are generally damaging, but often make up a large proportion of people’s shopping trolleys and diet.

For those wanting to lose weight, simple carbs are to be avoided generally. In addition, I often advise avoiding cereals and grains, root vegetables, and rice because of their high carb content.

19 11, 2017

Healthy Treats

2017-11-19T17:15:42+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition|

Are you looking for health snacks to make with your kids?

My small kids, aged 5 and 7, love treats! One of the things we enjoy doing on a Sunday afternoon is making healthy snack balls. This is a great way to make sure they get the pleasure and fun of their treats, while also knowing what exactly is in them and how much sugar! What’s more, adults love them too, with my wife eating variations of these for breakfast quite often too.

No cooking required, so kids can roll up their sleeves and get busy making these balls!

This couldn’t be easier.

The base for the balls is oats.

Then you can add all sorts of things ranging from crushed nuts, such as almonds or walnuts to seeds, such as sunflower, linseed or pumpkin seeds. Some dried fruits, such as raisins are a great way to add sweetness. As an extra treat you can also add a few dark chocolate bits. (Some children and adults have nut and other allergies, so take caution in regard to this.)

Mix everything into the bowel together, with the oats making up approximately 1/2 to 2/3 of the mixture.

Then you can add a few tablespoons of water and some coconut oil if you have some handy, until the mixture is just sticky enough to stick together. Then shape the mixture into small walnut sized balls and put on a plate in the fridge to set.

Kids and sugar intake

We all know that too much sugar is bad for us. In fact, Public Health England figures show that 4-10 year old children consume the average weight of a 5 year old in sugar per year, equivalent to 15 sugar cubes per day.

In a campaign to help parents control how much sugar kids eat, Public Health England have outlined how many grams of sugar a day children should be having per day:

  • 4-6 year olds: 19grams (5 sugar cubes)
  • 7-10 year olds: 24grams (6 sugar cubes)
  • 11 years olds +: 30grams (7 sugar cubes)

It’s not just the sugar to watch out for

One of the huge benefits of making treats with kids, instead of buying packets of biscuits and sweets, is that you can avoid bad fats, additives, various types of sugars and make them as healthy as possible. The other thing I love to see with my own children, is that they are learning from a young age how to cook food from scratch and don’t expect to buy everything in a packet, which sadly is the way shopping is going.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

 

 

18 10, 2017

Are You Eating the Right Fats?

2017-10-18T10:57:51+00:00 By |Foods, Nutrition, Uncategorized|

Eating the wrong fats can be devastating to our health and well-being, so it’s important to get this right

There are increasing amounts of research today supporting the theory that cholesterol and saturated fats are not the main villain in heart disease, as has traditionally been taught. When it comes down to it, there is very little evidence to support the traditional view that a low cholesterol and saturated fat diet reduces heart disease. What is coming to light, is that a combination of blood sugar problems, excess carbohydrates (sugars), inflammation, excess Omega 6 fats from vegetable oils and trans-fatty acids are responsible for arterial congestion. This in turn is related to such health issues as heart problems, dementia and stroke.

As a result, dietary advice for arterial health is being turned on its head.

WHICH FATS SHOULD WE BE EATING?

A fat free diet is not something I advocate. What matters, is how much fat and what type. Reducing your intake of some types of fats reduces the risk of several chronic diseases, but other types of fats are absolutely essential to our health and well-being, and in fact today there is a wide-scale deficiency in several kinds of fats, which is behind much of today’s ill-health. It’s always recommended to keep in touch with your Doctor if you have heart disease about changes to your diet.

GOOD FATS

The following are healthy fats that can be included in your diet – for more advice about this please contact me and I’m happy to advise further:

  • Cold pressed, virgin coconut oil, not refined. (Cooking with coconut oil is fine)
  • Cold pressed, virgin olive oil (uncooked/heated is best – olive oil heated to high temperatures becomes damaged)
  • Omega 3 fats obtained from fish (including such fish as mackerel, wild salmon, tuna, sardines, anchovies, krill oil)
  • Butter from grass fed cattle
  • Avocado
  • Nuts, such as almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, hazel nuts, pecans, pistachios, macadamia (not peanuts or cashews)
  • Eggs (preferably organic)
  • Grass fed meats

FATS TO AVOID

The main fats to keep away from are trans fatty acids and polyunsaturated vegetable oils. These types of oils promote oxidized cholesterol that become destructive when entering into your LDL particles, thus making LDL particles damaging in this case. LDL fats are normally absorbed by the liver. Damaged LDL particles however can contribute to heart disease. So while LDL readings which are commonly used to measure cholesterol are of some use, what is most important is keeping LDL particles free from oxidation.

Additionally, excessive Omega 6 polyunsaturated fats when eaten in high quantities are vulnerable to oxidation.

Fats to avoid include:

  • Margarine
  • Vegetable oils, such as sunflower, corn, rapeseed, peanut, soy
  • Reheated oils
  • Refined palm oil
  • Rancid oils

COOKING FROM SCRATCH

One of the main problems with buying foods from the supermarket is that it’s very likely there will be some damaging fats included. For example, it’s pretty difficult to find biscuits, crisps or cakes made without damaging vegetable oils and transfatty acids. If you are buying pre-made meals too, you’ll find they usually contain oils that I urge my clients to avoid, as well as sugars.

The very best way to avoid the pitfalls of processed foods is to make your meals from scratch. This way you can be sure of the ingredients you are consuming.

HOW THE BODY USES FAT

The human body uses fatty acids to do everything from building cell membranes to performing key functions in the brain, eyes, and lungs. The functions of fats include:

  • Brain – Fats compose 60% of the brain and are essential to brain function, including learning abilities, memory retention and moods. Fats are especially important for pregnant women, since they are integral to foetal brain development.
  • Cells – Fatty acids help your cells stay moveable and flexible, as well as being responsible for building cell membranes.
  • Heart – 60% of our heart’s energy comes from burning fats. Specific fats are also used to help keep the heart beating in a regular rhythm.
  • Nerves – Fats compose the material that insulates and protects the nerves, isolating electrical impulses and speeding their transmission.
  • Lungs – Lungs require a high concentration of saturated fats, enables the lungs to work and keeps them from collapsing.
  • Eyes – Fats are essential to eye function.
  • Digestion – Fats in a meal slow down the digestion process so the body has more time to absorb nutrients, and help provide a constant level of energy and keeps the body satiated for longer periods of time. Fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K) can only be absorbed if fat is present.
  • Organs – Fats cushion and protect your internal organs.
  • Immune System – Fats ease inflammation, helping your metabolism and immune system stay healthy and functioning.

On this site, I aim is to provide well-researched information, in order to empower readers to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing. In both alternative and allopathic medicine new discoveries are being made and there are vast choices available to people, something to be mindful of. Nicholas Dale, Naturopath is not seeking to impose his views on readers, but rather encourage them to seek out any professional help they may need (in whatever form that may take) and discover what is best for them.

Information on this site should not be taken as medical guidance or advice. Readers should always consult personally with their healthcare provider. Information published on this site is not intended to act as a substitute for advice of medical professionals, and should not be taken as such.

 

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