Tag Archive | Healthy living

Feel Good Food For Everyday

Healthy Food, Fresh Foods, Fruits and Vegetables, Grocery, Cooking, Lifestyle, Organic, Raw Foods, Good Food

Food is absolutely fundamental to our lives. We eat every day, cooking different meals, sourcing new foods at grocery stores, trying recipes from around the world. Food brings us together around the table but it can also provide a moment of solitary bliss in the form of a quick one-pot meal alone at lunchtime.

The flavours we go for and the choices we make aren’t just about enjoyment though. What we eat affects every aspect of our lives from our health to our weight and from the money we spend to the times we can save. Food can give us momentary joy, later replaced by frustration standing on the bathroom scales, but it can also help us to get the healthiest body we can.

Understanding foods and the benefits they bring is key to having a healthy, balanced diet that takes in everything from a bit of chocolate here and there to a huge bowl of steamed veg whenever you like. These are the foods that make us feel good every day.

Steamed Vegetables

A completely unsurprising first entry: steamed vegetables are fantastic for your body and will always make you feel good. You can choose from a wide range of flavours so that you can easily eat something completely different every day.

A good rule to go by is to choose from a wide range of colours when you decide which vegetables to eat. Dark leafy greens tend to contain lots of iron, carrots with their vibrant orange contain vitamin A and pulses like peas and bean contain plenty of fibre and protein to keep you fuller for longer.

Steaming vegetables is a good way to cook them as you don’t lose any of the vitamins or minerals to the cooking water. It is also significantly better than frying or roasting because this method doesn’t need any fat.

Sauerkraut

Another way to enjoy vegetables is to pickle and ferment them, as in the case with sauerkraut. The fermenting agent is a bacteria that is particularly good for your gut, allowing you to take in more vitamins and minerals and making you feel generally more healthy.

As a probiotic, sauerkraut does seem to help people who need IBS relief as it improves the functionality of the gut. Though it’s often unclear what causes IBS in each individual, it does seem that an imbalance in your gut flora is a possible cause of the discomfort you experience. Sauerkraut and other foods like kimchi and miso help to restore the balance by introducing new ‘good bacteria’ which allows your gut to function properly again.

One final reason to eat sauerkraut is simple: it’s delicious.

Dark Chocolate

Though milk and white chocolate are often full of sugar and fat, dark chocolate is a bit more forgiving and a little bit each day can be good for you. Lots of people find that dark chocolate is an acquired taste and if you are used to eating the high fat and sugar stuff, anything about 70% cocoa is going to be a surprise with its depth and bitterness. However, if you do like it, there are lots of reasons to love it.

Dark chocolate can help to lower your blood pressure, improve your eyesight and even help to increase your metabolism. Plus as it is sweet once you get past the bitterness, it can be the perfect alternative to a calorific dessert your main meal. Dark chocolate has also been found to help with symptoms of depression, lower cholesterol and seems to help with cognition too.

So if you are feeling stressed, trying to study for an exam and wanting to lose weight, dark chocolate might just help you on your way.

Fruit

Though people with diabetes will need to watch out for eating too much high sugar fruit, for most people, eating fruit is a great way to pile in on lots of vitamins and minerals. Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons and limes are ideal for gaining vitamin C. This is important because vitamin C is shown to increase the absorption of iron, making citrus fruits the ideal companion for green leafy veggies. If you are feeling fatigued or you are trying to work out harder at the gym, up your citrus fruits to really make a difference.

Fruit, like veg, is also a good way to increase the amount of fibre you eat. This will help your digestive system stay regular as well as keep you fuller for longer. Lots of fruits are also good for helping to increase your liquid intake. Though drinking a glass of water is always a good idea, fruit is a simple way to introduce more liquid into your diet, keeping you well hydrated throughout the day.

Flax Seeds

There is a lot of research into the benefits of flax seeds including whether they might help to prevent cancers, lung disease and cardiovascular disease. While this research has not provided any conclusive evidence just yet, there is a wealth of optimism that the flax seed could be ideal for improving your health.

What it certainly does contain is plenty of fibre (a theme is developing with fibrous foods!) as well as omega 3, an essential fatty acid and lignans, which are what researchers are looking into as they may help to protect against cancer.

The foods we choose to eat are vital for our health and well being and finding the best foods can be difficult. As the science around what we should eat changes all the time, it can be confusing to follow the best advice as it changes so frequently.

One thing you can do is listen to your body. Think about how you feel after eating certain foods. Do you feel good and energised? Do you feel happy? Do you regret what you ate? All of these questions will help to indicate the types of foods that you should be going for. And if you are really committed to your quest, keeping a diary will help to isolate the foods that really bring you joy.

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Just A Teeny Update

It’s been slow, but it’s been steady. I have whittled my excess kilos down by 5kg – 11pounds through mindfulness.

Trying to practice what I’m preaching about health and wellness is paying off bit by bit.

Healthy living, measuring tape, weightloss

Remember that a lifestyle change need not be drastic. It can be baby steps heading in the right direction. Keep moving…

Hold It!

I seek my contentment and peace without apologies because it can’t be purchased and it’s so easy to lose in today’s world.

Contentment, Meditation, Healing, Life, Joy, Pain, Letting Go, Release, Human, Emotions, Feelings, Poetry, Healthy Living

when you’ve been pierced
by the blunt edge of pain
you will know that
the sharp sweetness of joy
is far better to hold
close to your chest.

©

Jacqueline

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Keeping Your Mojo Throughout All Parenting Difficulties You Might Face

No one said raising children was easy. However, when your child looks at you and tells you they love you throughout your life, you know instinctually that raising children is worth it. However, that’s not to say the positive benefits of being a parent aren’t earned. They’re earned more than any life achievement could be. Climbing Mount Everest can look like a lounging nature trail walk compared to raising a human being to the best of your ability, and hoping they turn out sensibly, wise and happy.

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Part of being a great parent is keeping your ‘mojo’ levels up to the point where you can happily steer them through all the difficulties that occur through life. Mojo can be defined as your energy levels, your ability to be open, engaged and magnetic, the ability to go to sleep well and not have to worry too much about your day to day responsibilities because you’re confident you can complete them.

To someone lacking mojo, this can sound too good to be true, and impossible to keep up all the time. That’s true, there’s no way anyone can be happy all of the time, but they can certainly keep a good attitude most of the time.

Here’s how:

Make Time For Recreation

Recreation and taking a break, with or without your children is a big step on the road to sustaining your mojo. You have to keep updated with your social links, make time for silly entertainment, and allow yourself to be an utter goofball around your kids. It’s these moments that make all the ‘admin’ of life worth living, so be sure to keep them numerous.

Release The Burdens On Your Mind

Over time, unfulfilled obligations or life stresses take their toll on your mind, and a low-level feeling of despair can gestate within you because of this. Be sure to try alternative methods around these issues.

For example, if you’re getting divorced, you might like to try divorce by meditation to cool the entire emotionally-charged process. If you have difficulties with your children’s behavior at school, you might like to try and get to the source and root of the issue by visiting child behavioral therapists, as opposed to scolding them and hoping that works. Parenthood is never easy, but it’s twice as difficult with a heavy mind.

Eat Healthily

Eating a healthy diet is an absolute must when fulfilling a job so demanding as being a parent. Your children can take all energetic reserves out of you by the end of the day, and if you’re not giving your body all of the nutrients it deserves, you’re likely to crash sooner rather than later. Be sure to stay on top of healthy eating habits, and you’ll find an extra reserve of energy you never knew you could access.

Parenthood is the hardest job among jobs. Even trained and battle-hardened soldiers will shudder at the thought of raising another human being successful. If you’re doing a relatively good job, well done you! You deserve to be remembered as an incredible parent. Just be sure to stay on top of your health, mentally, physically and spiritually. In doing so, you’ll become an even better figurehead of the family. Good luck!

Homemade Juices and Smoothies – A Click A Day.

 

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One of the decisions I made earlier this year is to reduce as much as possible, my families consumption of fizzy pops, KoolAids, Caprisun, Tang and all such drinks and to replace them with fresh, healthier options.

Initially, it was not an easy sell to the children and Dear Himself.  I heard a lot of moans and groans to start with, but it caught on right  after the first trial run. Now, we bulk purchase a variety of fruits, juice them, mix them, make smoothies out of different blends and bottle to freeze.

The children participate in doing this, from washing the fruits, to peeling, to juicing with the electric juicer….

The process is fun since they get to eat the sweet pulp from the fruits and to label their hard work. Each school morning, a bottle of frozen homemade juice is tossed into their lunch box (it retains its freshness from freezing and would have melted by break time) and they bring back the bottles, rinse it out with warm water and reuse.

The interesting thing is that when we eat out these days, the kids compare the drinks they get outside to the one that we make at home and their verdict is that our’s is better 😉

How do you get your children to assist in the house? I love to learn from others.

© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha


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Freshness…Mundane Monday

Trablogger says, this is is a challenge created to find beauty in almost everything. The challenge is simple : find beauty in everyday mundane things, capture the beauty and upload the photographs.

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I love the crunchy taste of fresh vegetables and fruits as well as its beautiful, attractive colours.

It’s taken years to arrive at a point where my last two kids can nibble at them. While I sit with them, they always eat it like people who are swallowing bitter pills and once my back is turned, it turns to selective picking and tossing.

What’s with kids and veggies?

© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha