I love food, always have, always will. My tastes have changed over the years, and right now my diet is the healthiest and tastiest it’s ever been. I also feel the fittest and happiest I’ve ever felt.
You may think, I feel great because of the amount of exercise I do; exercise is the best medicine after all!! Not quite…. a year ago I was working out just as much, and although I looked ok on the outside, I was definitely not healthy on the inside. I was eating low calorie, low sugar, low fat versions of everything and was half a stone lighter than I am now. Sounds great, yeah? Actually, no……I suffered from a persistent cough, bad chest, cold, sinusitis and felt tired and run down for the whole winter….. After two months and a visit to the Docs, I tried 3 different antibiotics with no success.
I tried resting…..well as much as you can with two kids under 2. Again….no success. I left my stressful job in teaching, believing that was the root of my problems…….no success. Eventually I was totally wiped out with a throat infection and had no choice but to rest in bed for a week and accept help from my closest friends to help out with the little ones. When I recovered I saw a nutritionist who suggested some extreme changes to my diet…..some of it I followed and some of it just wasn’t practical as a busy stay at home mum with a much lighter purse!!!
A year on, here are some of the changes I believe have improved my health and are my changes for a better life…..
- Hot water with lemon slices and the occasional slice of ginger, every morning before eating anything. Why?….. to flush out toxins, aid digestion and key for me were the antiviral properties to help prevent a repeat of last winter!!
- Honey instead of sugar or sweeteners. Why?…..aside from it’s antibacterial properties, honey tastes great and has kept my sweet tooth and chocolate addiction at bay…more on the chocolate later!!
- Cooking with coconut oil. Why?…..another one for it’s antibacterial properties, coconut oil has so many health benefits that are important to me, but as a mother of toddlers it is the energy boost I feel I need the most. I love the taste too, and find a little coconut oil can add a subtle taste of deliciousness to any dish!!
- Swapping shop bought chocolate for home made. Why?…..it’s so easy to make for a start; just mix half raw cacao powder, half melted coconut oil then add a little honey and some nuts for added taste, pour into silicone ice cube trays and pop in the fridge for a couple of hours .
Coconut oil and honey have already been mentioned, but the key here is that all ingredients are natural, and raw cacao has as many health benefits as the honey and coconut oil. A natural anti-oxidant, it also contains Omega 6 fatty acids and vitamin C; yes, more for that weak immune system of mine!! By leaving out the dairy and the sugar in most chocolate, I am reducing the risk of cavities, diabetes and weight gain which would’ve been a given with my ever-increasing cravings for chocolate!!
I always ate a balanced diet which was as fresh as possible, and I do have plenty of recipes, which I will share in future posts, but I believe that these small changes are keeping me strong inside, and with these two little monkeys keeping me on my toes, believe me, I need it!!!