And so 2016 is nearly at the end…..

Hey Everyone

I was going to do this in a LIVE Video (you know how much I LOVE my videos) but I don’t think I could do it without being all emosh….therefore Ive decided to write this as a blog instead

2016 has been a very very tough year for me..most days Ive struggled to get out of bed, which therefore has made turning up to teach and put on the smile and motivate people very hard….you see at the end of 2015 I lost my best friend (My Grandad), as most of you know, and it really took its toll on me. There has been days I cant even motivate myself, never mind anyone else…some days Ive cried to and from classes, but then managed a smile for you all..and you all made it a little easier to smile and do the classes

Why am I saying this? Because I want to say THANK YOU to all my Class Member and Clients for all your commitment, energy, hard work, smiles and motivation in ALL Classes this year, without you all I don’t know how I would of carried on.

Having a business and doing a job I LOVE has been the 1 thing that stopped losing complete control of my life, don’t get me wrong its me tough and really hard for me, but I found some strength within and gained strength from YOU ALL that helped me get through it, even in my darkest days.

YES I know there will always be days like this, we all get them, but if I keep doing what I LOVE – nothing can stop me…..and if I keep being able to teach people like YOU then it’ll all be fine

Thanks for an amazing year of classes, its been an absolute pleasure to teach you all and watch your fitness levels improve and I cant wait to see what 2017 brings.
I hope you all have an amazing Christmas, spent with those who you love

Jen x

Say NO to Caffeine

What Is Caffeine?

Caffeine is a drug that is naturally produced in the leaves and seeds of many plants. It’s also produced artificially and added to certain foods. Caffeine is defined as a drug because it stimulates the central nervous system, causing increased alertness. Caffeine gives most people a temporary energy boost and elevates mood….but as I said this is only temporary!

Caffeine is in tea, coffee, chocolate, many soft drinks, and pain relievers and other over-the-counter medications. In its natural form, caffeine tastes very bitter. But most caffeinated drinks have gone through enough processing to camouflage the bitter taste…..fancy a cuppa??

Got the Jitters?
Many people feel that caffeine increases their mental alertness, but higher doses of caffeine can cause anxiety, dizziness, headaches, and the jitters. Caffeine can also interfere with normal sleep…..erm why would we want these effects on our body?

Caffeine can aggravate certain heart problems. It may also interact with some medications or supplements. If you are stressed or anxious, caffeine can make these feelings worse. Although caffeine is sometimes used to treat migraine headaches, it can make headaches worse for some people….an the latter is more common in most people. Caffeine addiction is a matter of perspective, but the fact is that millions of people begin their day with it, and can’t seem to function without their daily tea/coffee or energy/soft drinks!!

Facts about Caffeine
#1.It does not boost your Energy.
Caffeine does not boost your energy.It is a mild stimulant which acts temporarily. But many people are not aware of this.Though people who take caffeine regularly are generally less sensitive to its effects.

#2.It increases anxiety.
Caffeine causes more anxiety. It also causes jitterness and you will feel more active than normal time. Too much anxiety is also very bad for your health. It leads to many problems.

#3.It increases blood pressure.
Regular intake of coffee can also boost your blood pressure. This affects your health and blood pressure and can become a serious problem to handle. When people are stressed and taking coffee, this will increase your blood pressure

.

#4.It reduces many minerals.
Minerals like Magnesium ,potassium and zinc are needed in building up of your body in day to day life. Constant drinking of caffeine leads to reduced minerals in your body.

#5.It is hard to get out of it.
Consuming caffeine daily will become addictive and it is very hard to stop it. For stopping it you have to gradually reduce the intake to stop it. More people need their fix of morning coffee to startup their day.

#6. It is hard to sleep.
Some people find it harder to sleep if their caffeine intake is more than 2 cups. Their sleep gets disrupted and they will have trouble getting to sleep. As if sleep isn’t enough of a problem on its own!

#7. Stopping of caffeine leads to temporary problems 
Once you planned to stop caffeine and you start reducing the intake you will find many problems like depression/cravings…an the feeling you ”NEED” that caffeine fix. Your day will not go as it normally used to. This will pass.

#8. Caffeine does not improve memory.
Some feel that intake of caffine will boost your memory but it is not true. Intake of caffine does not boost your memory.

#9. It reduces calcium for your bones.
Calcium is a very important mineral for your bones. Caffeine intake 
reduces the calcium for your bones in your body and increases the risk of osteoporosis. Women are the mostly affected if calcium is reduced.

#10. Caffeine does not give you energy.
Many people drink energy drinks which contains caffeine. Actually caffeine does not give you energy but stimulates your nervous system andadrenals. So you think you feel energised……it’s a big fat coffee lie!!

#11. It increases stress in your body.
Constant intake of caffeine leads to stress in your body. It will take long time before these levels come to normal……Youll seein big offices all the Business Execs constantly supping Coffee?!!

#12. It stimulates the flow of stomach acid.
Caffeine also stimulates the flow of stomach acid. So people who have stomach or ulcer problems should avoid it….and people who don’t, you might as well start avoiding it anyways!

#13. It does not have any nutritional value.
Caffeine does not contain any nutrition benefits to the body. Intake of caffeine is not useful to you in any ways. So it is better to avoid it……what more of a reason do u need??

#14. It can lead to dehydration.
Caffeine intake more and more can lead to dehydration, which can then lead to headaches e.t.c blah blahhh

#15. It already raises your blood sugar.
Caffeine raises your blood sugar levels which if increases more can lead to diabetes and other related illnesses (extreme cases)

If you are trying to beat caffeine addiction, you may have problems with caffeine withdrawal. Here are some of the symptoms:
Fatigue
Drowsiness
Headache
Depression
Anxiety
Difficulty concentrating
Decreased motivation
Flu like symptoms

To avoid these problems, reduce your intake of caffeine gradually, beginning with what you normally consume at night, and then reducing your consumption during the day in gradual steps….then RID yourself of ALL of it.
Eating “Clean” to keep your blood sugar stable will help avoid energy crashes that make you want to reach for that fizzy drink or cup of coffee….think do u REALLY NEED it? REALLY!!!

Proper structured exercise, helps you maintain stable blood sugar levels, and avoid the energy fluctuations that cause you to reach for the caffeine to perk yourself up, thus avoiding the negative health effects of caffeine, without caffeine withdrawal…..get moving!!!
What should you have instead?:
WATER (it’s a no brainer really isn’t it)
Herbal Teas
GREEN TEA
Tulsi Tea (before bed)
Try it and see how you feel, at first itll be hard and you will HATE it…but think of the long run ☺

Do you eat your greens?

Superfoods (Super Heroes of the Food World)
Yes you’ve heard it before…..there is such things as super foods and didn’t your mum always say “Eat your Greens”….
Watercress, Broccoli, Spinach, Sprouts, Parsley and Kale will help lower Estrogen Levels (want to get rid of that Bum & Thigh FAT?….then these are the Super foods you need….they are like the SuperHeroes of Bum Fat assassination)

Green Leafy Veggies are the dogs wassits…..here is why:
Reduce risk of Heart Disease and Cancer
Contain easily digestible proteins, enzymes and vitamins.
They act as transfusions for Blood Health
They act as a tonic for the Brain and Immune System and a cleanser for the Kidneys (like Clearasil for the Kidneys)
Highly Nutritious
Good sources of Fibre and Iron
GREAT for helping estrogen balance in hip, bum an thigh fat
Helps reduce FAT from those stubborn areas
Help regulate bodys PH Levels
Helps eye sight
Increases the Livers ability to detoxify
Contains LOTS of Vitamins and Minerals that are ESSENTIAL for the Body
Improve the functioning of the Immune System
Support the Cardiovascular System

Green plant foods balance your pH. Many modern foods are acidic in nature and can lead to health issues, so balancing your body with neutralizing foods like greens keeps your body’s pH at a healthier level.

Some dark greens include omega-3 essential fatty acids, which are important to many of the body’s functions, especially for brain function.

Chlorophyl in green plants acts as a blood detoxifier.

They are high in nutrients and enzymes necessary for your body to function, such as iron, calcium, potassium, and magnesium and vitamins, including vitamins K, C, E, and many of the B vitamins. (Dead foods like white bread, refined sugar, cookies and the like rob you of health and vitality.)
In greens, you’ll find a variety of phytonutrients including beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect your cells from damage and your eyes from age-related problems.

Greens are powerful antioxidants, and they support the immune system.

And these are just some of the benefits of eating greens. Living a longer more productive life is the best one!

Kale: This nutrition powerhouse “offers everything you want in a leafy green,” says Nussinow, who gave it her first-place ranking. It’s an excellent source of vitamins A C, and K, has a good amount of calcium for a vegetable, and also supplies folate and potassium. Kale’s ruffle-edged leaves may range in color from cream to purple to black depending on the variety.

Spinach: Popeye’s favorite vegetable has 20 calories per serving, plus it’s packed with vitamins A and C, as well as folate. And because heat reduces the green’s oxalate content, freeing up its dietary calcium. Spinach leaves can be cooked quickly in the water that remains on them after rinsing, or they can be eaten raw in salads. This mild-flavored vegetable can be added to soups, pasta dishes, and casseroles.

Broccoli: Rich in vitamin C and is also a good source of vitamin A, potassium, and folate. Americans eat about 6 pounds of it a year. Its stalks and florets add both crunch and color to stir-fries. While some kids may call this veggie “trees,” they often like it best raw or steamed with a yogurt-based dip.

Cabbage: Although paler in color than other leafy greens, this cruciferous vegetable is a great source of cancer-fighting compounds and vitamin C. Available in red and green varieties, cabbage can be cooked, added raw to salads or stir fries, shredded into a slaw, or made into sauerkraut.

Watercress 
Watercress is a leafy green vegetable with a peppery flavor and is often added to salads or used on top of sandwiches. It is a good source of beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that may prevent and manage arthritis, cataracts, and macular degeneration, as well as maintain healthy hair and skin. Watercress is also a good source of vitamin K, which may prevent bone fractures.

Lettuce 
There are various types of lettuce, but all of them are leafy green vegetables and are low in calories, making them a terrific addition to any weight-loss plan. Some types of lettuce, such as romaine, green leaf, red leaf, bibb, and butterhead, are good sources of antioxidants, including beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and quercetin, which help prevent arthritis, cataracts, and macular degeneration, as well as maintain healthy hair and skin. Lettuce is also a good source of potassium, a mineral involved in managing blood pressure and preventing osteoporosis. In addition, all lettuce varieties contain vitamin K, which may prevent bone fractures.

Arugula 
Arugula (also known as rucola and rocket) is a cruciferous and leafy green vegetable with a peppery taste and is often used in salads. It is a good source of potassium, a mineral involved in managing blood pressure and preventing osteoporosis. Arugula may help boost memory due to phytochemicals — antioxidants found in all cruciferous vegetables. Like other salad greens, arugula is very low in calories, which makes it a great addition to any weight-loss plan.

Health Benefits
Dark green leafy vegetables are, calorie for calorie, probably the most concentrated source of nutrition of any food. They are a rich source of minerals (including iron, calcium, potassium, and magnesium) and vitamins, including vitamins K, C, E, and many of the B vitamins. They also provide a variety of phytonutrients including beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect our cells from damage and our eyes from age-related problems, among many other effects. Dark green leaves even contain small amounts of Omega-3 fats.

Perhaps the star of these nutrients is Vitamin K. A cup of most cooked greens provides at least nine times the minimum recommended intake of Vitamin K, and even a couple of cups of dark salad greens usually provide the minimum all on their own. Recent research has provided evidence that this vitamin may be even more important than we once thought (the current minimum may not be optimal), and many people do not get enough of it.

Vitamin K:
Regulates blood clotting
Helps protect bones from osteoporosis
May help prevent and possibly even reduce atherosclerosis by reducing calcium in arterial plaques
May be a key regulator of inflammation, and may help protect us from inflammatory diseases including arthitis
May help prevent diabetes
Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin, so make sure to put dressing on your salad, or cook your greens with oil.
As a general rule, you should aim to eat at least five servings of vegetables daily (that’s about 2 ½ cups of cooked vegetables), and that includes leafy greens. As long as they’re prepared in a healthy way, leafy greens, like other nonstarchy vegetables, are a great addition to your diet and offer countless health benefits.

Leafy greens are full of vitamins, minerals, and disease-fighting phytochemicals. They are rich in fiber, an important nutrient for weight loss and maintenance because it keeps you feeling full and helps control your hunger. Fiber can also lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and help to temper blood-sugar swings by slowing the absorption of carbohydrates into your bloodstream after meals. This lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Leafy greens also contain a lot of water, which helps keep you hydrated and contributes to beautiful skin and hair.

Some leafy greens, like collards and kale, are particularly rich in calcium, which helps keep your teeth and bones strong and reduces your overall risk for osteoporosis. Calcium also contributes to muscle function and blood-pressure management. Leafy greens contain potassium as well, which further protects against osteoporosis and helps manage blood-pressure levels.

The antioxidants like vitamin C, lutein, and zeaxanthin that are contained in leafy greens may help reduce your risk of cataractsand macular degeneration. Vitamin C helps the body make collagen too; collagen is a major component of cartilage that aids in joint flexibility, may reduce your risk of arthritis, and keeps your skin and hair healthy and beautiful. Research shows vitamin C may also slow bone loss and decrease the risk of fractures.

Leafy greens that contain beta-carotene, such as collard greens, spinach, and Swiss chard, contribute to the growth and repair of the body’s tissues. Beta-carotene may also protect your skin against sun damage. Beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body, and food sources of beta-carotene are the best way to get your vitamin A fix, since extremely high doses of vitamin A in supplements can be toxic and lead to bone, liver, and neural disorders as well as birth defects. Food sources of beta-carotene are entirely safe, though, since the body regulates how much beta-carotene is converted into vitamin A.

Leafy greens are an excellent source of folate, which can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and memory loss. And since folate contributes to the production of serotonin, it may help ward off depression and improve mood.
The vitamin E found in green leafy vegetables works with vitamin C to keep skin healthy as you age. This vitamin also helps protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays and may help reduce your risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.

Almost Carb-Free
Greens have very little carbohydrate in them, and the carbs that are there are packed in layers of fiber, which make them very slow to digest. That is why, in general, greens have very little impact on blood glucose. In some systems greens are even treated as a “freebie” carb-wise (meaning the carbohydrate doesn’t have to be counted at all).

Struggle to get them into your diet? Maybe these ideas will help
Add your greens to Smoothies…yes I know it sounds crazy BUT I add Spinach to nearly every Smoothie I make and all it does it turn the actual drink green…you cannot taste it at all and its a GREAT way to get your daily intake….
Make a stir fry and throw all diff veggies in, mix with meat and rice/cous cous and then it wont seem too much
LOVE a roast? substitute a few potatoes for some veggies
Make a Salad….pack it with all ur fav veggies and enjoy
Experiment…you never know you might surprise yourself

With all the benefits mentioned above, you would be crazy not to get more greens into your diet!!!!

Eating Out Healthy – Liverpool

So following on from the recent survey one of the things requested that I write about was healthy eating choices whilst eating out. So I thought Id put together this short little article with some hints and tips on eating out and some places Ive personally visited and found healthy and yummy! I am sure there are plenty of other places…always new places cropping up isn’t there.

Anyways……People often say “I cant stay on track when I go out for food as its hard and no healthy choices…Im sorry but “bulls**t” – it just takes a little bit more patience and a little bit more time…and lucky for us, a lot of restaurant and eateries are getting a lot more savvy now…especially when it comes to allergies and specific nutritional requirements.

If you are wanting to stay on track, healthy and avoid the BAD stuff, but still wanna be able to eat out and enjoy yourself…here are some of my top tips!!

Be fussy – if you want substitute something on the menu for something else – ASK!! Seriously you will be surprised how easy it is, after all the restaurants want to make you happy and you want to enjoy your food – I always substitute chips for Sweet Potato or ask for some veggies – I mean its nothing too technical for the chef
I always opt for Fish or lean meat – or sometimes I quite often go for the veggie option….well as long as it isn’t pasta (vom)
Avoid the sauces and dressings….they are laden with sugar and salt
Dont think you always need to have a dessert…why? If your food is nutritious enough, you should be full and feeling good from your meal….if your food was sugar and bad fats laden…yes of course your body is going to crave a sweet dessert
Get some nice water with your meal – dont have an alcoholic drink!! If you need something sweeter than water…ask for sparkling water with a slice of lemon/lime or mint….they have all this  behind the bar – so no biggie
I love a plate of veggies and fish/meat – it fills me, is nutritious and doesn’t leave me feeing bloated and wanting more
I always ask for more veggies and more often than not….as a side dish Veggies is an option!

Most restaurants/cafes now have Gluten Free, Veggie, Dairy Free and Vegan options…but sometimes you will need to ASK!!! They normally have a serrate menu or will be able to tell you want meals meet your nutritional criteria. Just ASK…..after all if you dont ask you dont get!!

Places Ive personally eaten at (bearing in mind I am gluten free and dairy free)
Leaf – Bold Stree
GIVE Kitchen – Brunswick Dock
Bills Kitchen (L1 – under Bierkeller)
Pizza Express – they do a fab superfood salad and offer GF on most of their dishes
Marino Lounge – New Brighton Prom
Crust – Bold Street
Zizzi – L1
Las Iguanas – L1
Pret – Liverpool
Trattoria 51 – Old Hall St
Egg Cafe – off Renshaw St

So go along and try them out

There are so many more options now -a-days and people and companies are becoming a lot more savvy…so YES you can eat out and stay on track and be healthy, its just about being more aware, asking questions and looking at the menu!!!

If in doubt – go online and check the menus before you eat there or ring ahead….it may sound like a big fuss but for the price of your health – it really isn’t

Now go out and enjoy yourself!!

Jen x

Shopping for Healthy Food – Liverpool

So I am always posting recipes and healthy food etc….and Ive been asked where I buy the stuff from….now without sounded like a complete sarcky cow…..its not some magical land in Narnia…..no really, YES there are specific Health Food Shops, but a lot of the stuff and ingredients can be bought in a local supermarket…the thing is you just have to LOOK or ASK!

After all some of the slogans of supermarkets are “Happy to Help” so if you cant find something – ask!!

I buy a lot of my stuff from:
Supermarkets (Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury, Aldi, Morrisons) – yes I know all supermarkets stock different stuff…but they are everywhere
Holland and Barrett (online and instore)
Mattas on Bold St, Liverpool
Maggies Farm – organic fruit, veg and more on Aigburth Rd in Liverpool
Independent Health Food Stores – and these will be different in every city – just google it
Online – (amazon, planet organic) – again google!!!

If I cant find something in a shop, I just google it – the wonderful world of the Web now helps so so much! Its easy, if you are looking for something, check the company’s website and then if not…check any online stores! Amazon now-a-days sells all kinds…an very reasonable!

Supermarkets are stocking a lot more now, especially for specific nutritional requirements – yes we still may be miles behind the times..BUT its a step in the right direction and just have a good mooch!!

Online searching & buying is so so easy now

I understand some ingredients and things are a pain in the ass to find/buy – but if this is the case I just look online!

if you need anymore info on any specific ingredients/ items or aren’t sure, just give me a shout!!

Jen x

Pre & Post Workout Food…what to eat?

Pre/Post workout…what should you eat? What should you avoid?

Its a question that comes up quite often, what type of food and how soon before and after a workout should you eat….well I hope this little article will help you out a bit.

PRE WORKOUT
The point of the pre workout is to give your body some energy from the right sources to be able to do your workout properly, but this should be 1-2hrs before training, to be able to allow the body to digest it. A Mix of complex carbs to ensure a slow release of energy, and also easily digestible.
Organic Peanut Butter (not sun pat) on Gluten Free Bread with Banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon
Seeds/Nuts (small amount as high in fat)
Fruit & Nut Style Trail Mix – handful
Smoothie
Oatmeal – slow release
Apple Wedges with Peanut Butter on
Helping to increase energy levels & avoid that sugar crash that you would get from sugary, crappy snacks

POST WORKOUT
The point of the post workout is to give the body nutrients to restore and rehydrate the body and aid with muscle recovery. The post workout food should be 30-45mins after.
Lean proteins – non bloating
Veggies
Salmon – inflammatory and helps regulate insulin levels
Sweet Potato – helps restore Glycogen levels
Spinach – lowers Blood Pressure, is an anti inflammatory and helps curb appetite
Eggs – aid muscle recovery
Avocado – Helps the body absorb minerals from veggies
Protein & Veggies rich juice/smoothie drink

I hope this has helped

Avoid any sugary snacks, that you think give you a high and also caffeine – its not doing the body any good and as much as you feel it is aiding a workout or recovery its just adding sugar to the body….also check out “protein bars & Shakes” if you are taking them – look at the sugar content, yes they may be full of protein BUT almost all of them are laden with sugar…so kind of cancels out the good stuff

Eat Right
Train Right
Recover Right

Jen x

Spice up your Life

So when it comes to Nutrition I am a pretty Plain Jane – I don’t really add spice to stuff and I never use any sauces or anything processed to my food BUT….below I have outline my 3 absolute fav and I wanted to share them with you and also outline some of the amazing Health benefits from using them

Ginger
I have Loose Leaf Tea, Fresh ginger and add to cooking, smoothies and juices
* Has a long history of use for relieving digestive problems such as nausea, loss of appetite, motion sickness and pain
* Contains very potent anti-inflammatory compounds called gingerols.
* Gingerols, the main active components in ginger and the ones responsible for its distinctive flavour, may also inhibit the growth of human colorectal cancer cells.
* Ginger extracts have been shown to have both antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumour effects on cells.
* Warming on a cold day and can help promote healthy sweating, which is often helpful during colds and flus. A good sweat may do a lot more than simply assist detoxification.
* Very effective in preventing the symptoms of motion sickness, especially seasickness
* Anti-vomiting action has been shown to be very useful in reducing the nausea and vomiting of pregnancy
* Ginger has been shown to be effective against exercise-induced muscle pain
* Ginger appears to be very effective against menstrual pain when taken at the beginning of the menstrual period.

Tumeric
This is strong in colour and flavour and I don’t add much, but I sprinkle on scrambled egg, steamed veggies, add to smoothies and juices!!
* Long been used as a powerful anti-inflammatory in both the Chinese and Indian systems of medicine
* Significant anti-inflammatory activity in a variety of experimental models. Even more potent than its volatile oil is the yellow or orange pigment of turmeric, which is called curcumin and curcumin produces no toxicity.
* Has powerful antioxidant & Inflammatory effects.
* It’s combination of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects explains why many people with joint disease find relief when they use the spice regularly
*  Curcumin’s antioxidant actions enable it to protect the colon cells from free radicals that can damage cellular DNA
* Curcumin also helps the body to destroy mutated cancer cells, so they cannot spread through the body and cause more harm. A primary way in which curcumin does so is by enhancing liver function.
* Amazing effects of turmeric on the liver’s ability to detoxify
* Good source of vitamin B6
* Cholesterol-lowering effects are the result of the curry spice’s active constituent, curcumin,
* Growing evidence suggests that turmeric may afford protection against neurodegenerative diseases.

Cinnamon
I had to my smoothies, porridge oats, herbal teas and any baking…always get that warming feeling from it
* Lower blood sugar levels, reduce heart disease risk factors
* Loaded with powerful antioxidants which protect the body from oxidative damage caused by free radicals and the antioxidants in it have potent anti-inflammatory activity
* It helps the body fight infections and repair tissue damage.
* It can dramatically reduce insulin resistance, helping this incredibly important hormone to do its job
* Well known for its blood sugar lowering effects.
* Two compounds found in cinnamon appear to inhibit the buildup of a protein called tau in the brain, which is one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease
Not only does consuming cinnamon improve the body’s ability to utilise blood sugar, but just smelling the wonderful odour of this sweet spice boosts brain activity

Im pretty sure there are thousands more benefits but I just want to outline the main ones (in my opinion)

Hope this helps

Jen x

Good Fats ‘v’ Bad Fats

Good Fats ‘v’ Bad Fats

So – fats always seem to be outed as the “bad guys” and the devils in the waistline wars…but you may be surprised to hear this is not necessarily the case.

There are actually “good” and “bad’ fats out there…now Im not going to bore you (or myself) with all the science jargon…Im just going to keep it simple and tell it how it is and hopefully shed some light on the Fat debate

Now lets just clear this up the Saturated fat found in coconut oil (as I know this is all on trend at the minute) is different to that found in a pizza!!

All Fats contain 9 calories per gram, but they all have very different effects on your health and your weight. Trans/Bad Fats are the unhealthy ones,

Lets start with the Bad Guys….The “Bad” Fats

Bad Fats increase cholesterol and increase your risk of certain diseases.
Bad Fats or “trans fats” or “saturated fats” (but not all….) are the type that cause:- weight gain, clogged arteries, heart disease and much more.

Bad Fats are found in:
Processed foods
Commercial baked goods (cakes, pizzas, biscuits, bread)
Packaged/Processed Food
Solid Fats (margarine)
Friend Foods
Pre-mixed Foods (cake mix etc)
And anything with “partially hydrogenated” oil on the ingredients list

So basically any food you love to binge on….think again! It contains all these Bad fats, but lets be honest we all know this anyway don’t we??

Now the Goodies…..The “Good” Fats

Fats are essential to our physical and emotional health – well the Good Fats are. Heathy Fats play a huge role in helping you manage your moods, fight fatigue and even help control your weight.
Good Fats aka “monounsaturated” and “polyunsaturated” fats can help improve blood cholesterol levels, lower your risk of heart disease and also benefit insulin levels, therefore controlling blood sugar (helpful for anyone with diabetes)

Good Fats are found in:
Avocados
Olives
Nuts
Natural Peanut Butter
Seeds
Flaxseed
Fatty Fish (Omega 3)
Coconut oil (YES I KNOW)

Omega 3 Fatty Acids are a type of polyunsaturated fat and they are superheats for the brain and emotional health. Omega 3 Fats help:
Protect the body against memory loss and dementia
Reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer
Eases arthritis, joint pain and inflammatory skin conditions
Supports a healthy pregnancy
Helps balance mood and sharpen mind
These amazing fatty Acids can be found in Fish, Seaweed, Fish Oil, Walnuts, Flaxseeds, Sprouts, Kale, Spinach and Parsley, Olive Oil

Low Fat?? Whats all that about – its a chemical sh*tstorm thats what it is….

Nowadays there are so many “low fat” options, but these have only helped increase the obesity rate…not as healthy as they sound. The problem is people are swapping the “fats” and opting for “low fat” – which are just basically full of refined carbs and sugars…which have negative effects on the body, meaning we’ve swapped 1 bad thing for another…..how does that make sense? I mean come on…how did you think the food would have taste when the “fat” was removed?? SUGAR SUGAR SUGAR!!! THE REAL DEVIL

Red Meat?? To eat or not to eat?
With the environmental damage and treatment of industrially raised cattle, the fact they are pumped with growth hormones and antibiotics and denied much outdoors time….what else could put you off? Oh and they are given GMO Feed grown with pesticides… If you must eat red meat – limit the amount and also go for organic/grass fed/free range as these don’t pose the same health risks.

So what can you do?
Increase your intake of the Good Fats
Use Coconut Oil
Have Omega 3 Fatty Acids everyday
Avoid processed Sat fats
Don’t replace fat with sugary foods
Vary your diet
eat your veggies
Go Organic
Don’t fry your foods
Snack well

Remember FAT isn’t the devil here……maybe look at your sugar intake and before you grab that “low fat” meal….THINK!!

Fat is needed and is can be god for you…choose wisely

Jen x

Coco Loco about Coconut Oil

Coco Loco

You may see Coconut normally as being in a Bounty, but it has soooo much to offer the body in its natural state….and now it is becoming so much more popular than it was a few years ago, more people are realising the amazing benefits for your health, skin and hair….it really is an amazing product!!!



Now when I talk about this I mean pure, 100% natural organic Coconut Oil….as you can imagine it costs a lot more than a Bounty or some Coconut Shampoo…but the Health Benefits are out of this world…and definitely worth the investment 

Lets get the sciencey bit out the way.

Coconuts contain Lauric, Capric and Caprylic Acids…the properties of these acids are:

* Antioxidant

* Anti-microbrial

* Anti Fungal

* Anti bacterial

* Soothing

Lauric Acid gets turned into Monoalauien, which helps the body deal with Virus’s & Bacteria that attack the body….and here’s where the sciencey bit ends, because lets be honest we want the nitty gritty stuff!!!

Coconut oil is easy on your digestive system and does not produce an insulin spike in your bloodstream, so for a quick energy boost, you could simply eat a spoonful of coconut oil, or add it to your food

It is mainly found in Saturated Fats (ARGGHHH The Bad Fats)….but stay with me…its not all ba. If you are still concerned about saturated fat, consider taking a second look. Even if you still avoid/limit saturated fats, it is important to note that not all saturated fats behave the same way in the body. Coconut oil, due to its high lauric acid content, is actually beneficial to the body.

Health Benefits:

* Hair & Skin Care

* Stress Relief

* Maintain Cholesterol Levels

* Aid Weight Loss

* Increase Immunity, Digestion & Metabolism

* Reduce Kidney problems, Heart Disease and Blood Pressure.

* Can help boost metabolism

* Can increase bone strength by allowing better absorption of calcium, vitamin D, and other minerals

* Studies show that coconut oil may help increase thyroid health because of its unique combination of nourishing properties and the fact that it travels directly to the liver without the need for hormones or enzymes in digestion

* High lauric acid content can help lower cholesterol and blood pressure. It doesn’t increase LDL and helps keep arteries flexible and prevent atherosclerosis

* Can help fight infection and flu due to its antibacterial, antiviral and antimicrobial properties

* Helps relieve the Body of Stress due to its Soothing benefits

* Helps control Blood Sugar and increases the Secretion of Insulin

* Reduces the workload on the Liver and prevents the accumulation of Fat
And the list can go on….but I wont bore you

Benefits to Weight Loss:

Contains short & medium chain Fatty Acids that help strip excessive Fat. Easy to digest and helps Healthy Functioning of the Thyroid and Enzymes. It helps speed up Metabolism by removing Stress on the Pancreas, resulting in burning more energy!! The medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil have been shown to increase 24 hour energy expenditure by as much as 5%, potentially leading to significant weight loss over the long term. BINGO!!!

Benefits to Hair:

Coconut oil can effectively get rid of dandruff when rubbed into the scalp a couple times a week. It does make hair oily, of course, but I recommend massaging into the scalp before bed and leaving in overnight before rinsing out in the morning. It also helps strengthen hair and add shine

Benefits to Skin:

It is an effective moisturiser that prevents dryness. Can be helpful to some Skin Conditions (seek advice from GP)
Coconut oil is without question a favourite body lotion. It absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave an oily feeling at all. It makes skin incredibly silky and has wonderful antibacterial/antimicrobial properties

Benefits to Medical Conditions:

The Lauric Acids prevents Heart Problems occurring, despite the high levels of Saturated Fat. It decrease the incidence of injury in the Arteries. Studies in both humans and rats show that coconut oil improves important risk factors like Total, LDL and HDL cholesterol, which may translate to a reduced risk of heart disease.
Studies have also shown that the fatty acids in coconut oil can increase blood levels of ketone bodies, supplying energy for the brain cells of Alzheimer’s patients and relieving symptoms.

Benefits to Digestion:

Helps prevent IBS, deals with Bacterias and helps the Absorption of Nutrients (Vitamins & Minerals)
Studies show that coconut oil may help increase thyroid health because of its unique combination of nourishing properties and the fact that it travels directly to the liver without the need for hormones or enzymes in digestion

OK the bit you’ve been waiting for….

As I mentioned above it is mainly found in Saturated Fats…so I bet that put you off, but I am glad you stayed around to hear the good bit….
Coconut Oil contains Less Calories that other Oils out there now BUT The Fat content is easily converted into Energy and does NOT lead to the accumulation of fat in the Heart and Arteries…..helping BOOST Energy, Endurance and Performance and PROMOTE FAT LOSS!!

It can be bought nearly everywhere now…online, groupon, costco and most supermarkets and ALL health food shops….YES it is more expensive than a normal oil , but can you really put a price on your health???

Ensure it is 100% Coconut Oil and NO added Stabilisers or E Numbers…be very careful!!!

How can it be used:

* In Stir Fries

* Smoothies

* When cooking most foods….as a replacement for the usual oils you use.

* Cooking and Baking

* On your Skin

* Added to hot drinks

* Hair product

* Added to Epsom Salts in the bath

* Massage Oil

If you are worrying about a very strong taste…it isn’t, Im not really a fan of coconut on mass but it is absolutely GORGEOUS in cooking and especially Stir Fries and Smoothies

get investing in some….if you are serious about your health! I know £10-15 can sound expensive but you spend tons of money on crappy food and alcohol every week….this is an investment in your health

The choice is yours

Jen x

Warming Soup Recipe

The past week the temperatures have really dropped so why not make up a winter warming soup….you can take along to work and share with all the family and its Healthy and Tasty

Broccoli & Apple Soup

Serves 4. You need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups fresh broccoli stalks, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, finely chopped
1 cup onion, thinly sliced
1 cup red cooking apple, peeled and diced
½ cup celery, diced
4 cups all-natural chicken stock
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
¼ cup plain, active culture yoghurt
2 tablespoons minced parsley
1. Heat oil in a large pot with the lid on. Add broccoli, thyme, onion, apple and celery.
Cover and cook over low heat 10 minutes
2. Add chicken stock and pepper and cook 30 minutes more
3. Remove from heat and cool slightly
4. Puree the soup one portion at a time in blender or food processor
5. Serve hot or chilled and garnished with a dollop of yogurt and sprinkling of minced
parsley