10 REASONS TO SOAK NUTS AND SEEDS

nuts-and-seedsThe benefits of soaking nuts and seeds.

Part of my journey to  reclaim my health, I kept a Nutritional Journal. I often noticed after eating raw nuts that they upset my stomach slightly, I would also get really tired. I love my nuts and seeds so I started looking at ways I could include them without these effects. Through my studies I came across the book Nourishing Traditions According to Sally Fallon, co-founder of the Weston A. Price Foundation and author of Nourishing Traditions, “our ancestors and virtually all pre-industrialized people only ate grains that were soaked or fermented.” If you do not have a copy of her cookbook Crab a copy here, it is a great resource of information and is an essential cookbook for traditional cooking.

So I started soaking and dehydrating my nuts and seeds, I found to my delight, that I could eat them with no negative effects. I also discovered that they tasted fresher and they had a much yummier flavor.

So why is soaking them is better for us?

Soaking nuts, grains, seeds, and legumes

Nature has set it up so that the nut, grain and seed may survive until proper growing conditions are present. Nature’s defense mechanism includes nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances that can be removed naturally when there is enough precipitation to sustain a new plant after the nut, grain or seed germinates. When it rains the nut, grain or seed gets wet and can then germinate to produce a plant. So we are mimicking nature when we soak our nuts, grains and seeds.

Nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances found in nuts grains and seed can be minimized or eliminated by soaking. These inhibitors and toxic substances are enzyme inhibitors, phytates (phytic acid), polyphenols (tannins), and goitrogens.

What are Enzyme inhibitors?

There are digestive enzymes and metabolic enzymes. Digestive enzymes help break down food. Metabolic enzymes help every biological process the body does. Enzyme inhibitors will clog, warp or denature an active site of an enzyme. They may also bind to the enzyme, which will prevent the intended molecule from binding. “Once again, the habits of traditional peoples should serve as a guide. They understood instinctively that nuts are best soaked or partially sprouted before eaten. This is because nuts contain numerous enzyme inhibitors that can put a real strain on the digestive mechanism if consumed in excess.”

What are Phytates?

“All grains contain phytic acid in the outer layer or bran. Untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc in the intestinal tract and block their absorption. This is why a diet high in unfermented whole grains may lead to serious mineral deficiencies and bone loss. The modern misguided practice of consuming large amounts of unprocessed bran often improves colon transit time at first but may lead to irritable bowel syndrome and, in the long term, many other adverse effects.”

I would like to introduce you to the concept of why you should soak you nuts and how to do it.

Why soak nuts, grains and seeds?

  1. To remove or reduce phytic acid.
  2. To remove or reduce tannins
  3. To neutralize the enzyme inhibitors.
  4.  To encourage the production of beneficial enzymes.
  5. To increase the amounts of vitamins, especially B vitamins.
  6.  To break down gluten and make digestion easier.
  7.  To make the proteins more readily available for absorption.
  8. To prevent mineral deficiencies and bone loss.
  9. To help neutralize toxins in the colon and keep the colon clean.
  10. To prevent many health diseases and conditions.

“Soaking allows enzymes, lactobacilli and other helpful organisms to break down and neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. Soaking in warm water also neutralizes enzyme inhibitors, present in all seeds, and encourages the production of numerous beneficial enzymes. The action of these enzymes also increases the amount of many vitamins, especially B vitamins. During the process of soaking and fermenting, gluten and other difficult-to-digest proteins are partially broken down into simpler components that are more readily available for absorption.”

What can be used to soak nuts, grains and seeds?

I have found many references to soaking nuts, grains, and seeds in water, salt water, or a warm water mixture with something acidic like yogurt, whey or lemon juice. It seems within 7 to 24 hours the enzyme inhibitors are neutralized and the anti-nutrients are broken down regardless of the method you choose. There is evidence that the process works when you see sprouting begin.

How long does the soaking process take?

“As little as seven hours of soaking in warm acidulated water will neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. The simple practice of soaking cracked or rolled cereal grains overnight will vastly improve their nutritional benefits.” “Flour products should be soaked at room temperature for at least twelve hours but better results may be obtained with a twenty-four hour soaking.”

Are the nuts, grains and seeds used wet?

I have enjoyed almonds wet. If you choose to try consuming anything in the soaked state, make little batches and store them in the refrigerator. Usually everything that is soaked is dried in a dehydrator or oven on the lowest possible setting for 24 – 48 hours to remove all moisture.

Basic Recipes we have used Salt.

Almonds

  • 4 cups almonds, 1-tablespoon sea salt, filtered water (enough to cover nuts) Soak overnight or a minimum of 7 hours, Dehydrate for 12-24 hours or until crisp In my experience almonds take longer than the other nuts, for me around 15 hours. You really need to make sure they are very dry otherwise you will notice them going mouldy very quickly.

Cashews

  • 4 cups raw cashews, 1-tablespoon sea salt, filtered water (enough to cover nuts) Soak 3-6 hours. Be careful with cashews – they can go slimy if left too long so keep an eye on them. Dehydrate for 12-24 hours or until crisp (do not use temperature above 150°F)

Pecans & Walnuts

  • 4 cups raw pecans or walnuts, 2-teaspoon sea salt, filtered water (enough to cover nuts)Soak overnight or a minimum of 7 hours, Dehydrate for 12-24 hours or until crisp (do not use temperature above 150°F)

Pine Nuts & Hazelnuts

  • 4 cups pine nuts or hazelnuts, 1 tablespoon sea salt, filtered water (enough to cover nuts)Soak overnight or a minimum of 7 hours. Dehydrate for 12-24 hours or until crisp (do not use temperature above 150°F)

Pumpkin seeds

  • 4 cups pumpkin seeds, 2 tablespoon sea salt, filtered water (enough to cover pumpkin seeds)Soak overnight or a minimum of 7 hours. Dehydrate for 12 hours or overnight  (do not use temperature above 150°F)

Let me know your favorite recipes.

Written by Delicia Beaty and Sharon Foutch  Source (pdf): wss.nourishingconnections.org

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Chicken Creamed Spinach with Jens Noodles

  • Chicken creamed & SpinachIngredients
  • 1 bag of Jen’s fettuccine noodles
  • (220g) Chicken Breast sliced
  • (2oo g) spinach chopped
  • 1/2 onion sliced
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger chopped finely or crushed
  • 1 garlic glove, diced
  • ½ (400 ml) can coconut milk
  • 1 lime
  • 1 capsicum (red, yellow or orange)
  • Coconut Oil
  • 1 teaspoon dulse flakes

Why Dulse?  Dulse Flakes

Dulse is a reddish-brown seaweed that people have harvested for hundreds of years as a food source, as all Sea vegetables they help alkalize our bodies from the over-acidity of the modern diet and contain 10 to 20 times MORE bioavailable minerals and vitamins than land vegetables, with no fat and low calories ! For example, lack of iodine in the human body (which is widely absent from Australian soils but present in sea vegetables) can create a whole huge range of serious health issues – look them up!

Dulse as many health benefits seaweeds are the most dense nutritional food on our planet. Dulse seaweed loaded, with Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, and E, and minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, chromium, iodine and zinc and trace elements.
Enjoy Dulse, straight out of the bag, or sprinkle Leaf or Flakes in soups, stocks, stews, miso, stir-fry or savoury dishes. I use it a an alternative to ‘salt’

The Fun

  1. Turn on the music.
  2. Prepare Jens Noodles are the instruction and allow to drain.
  3. Heat up a nonstick pan, add the coconut oil.
  4. Add the onion,ginger, garlic and capsicum.
  5. Pop in the chicken and allow it to cook for 5 min.
  6. Add the coconut milk,
  7. Add the spinach and lime
  8. pop in Jen Noodles  and mix well.
  9. Turn off the heat, sprinkle the dulse.
  10. Serve with love eat with awareness.
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Why keep a Nutritional Journal?

food-diary

How’s your relationship with Food?

What kind of eater are you?  – an on the run or an or in-the-car eater?

Do you stand-at-the-kitchen bench or over-the-kitchen-sink and eat?

Or maybe you eat  most of your meals in front of the computer or the TV or phone?

Which makes us tend to eat faster, eat more and it makes it harder to remember how much you have eaten, so that leaves you feeling less satisfied.Eat while distracted1

Our relationship with food tells us a lot about our health. Many of us spend so much time ignoring our food, so we create habits that detaches us from the real reasons why we need to eat; as a result we create  a very sad relationship with our food, therefore we have health issues as a result.

I believe that there is a great value in slowing down and bringing awareness to our food.

Keep in mind that we are not only digesting the food we are eating, we are also digesting the conversations we are having and the environment we are in. The simple act of bringing awareness to our relationship with food helps us to unravel our emotional eating and allows a better relationship not only with food, but also with our relationship to ourselves.

Do you think that you’ll be capable of loyalty to a diet if you haven’t addressed your disloyalty toward yourself? Until your fundamental relationship with yourself is healed, then your relationship to food will always be a battlefield.

It’s not enough to just tell yourself what not to do; you must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be.

That is why a nutrition diary is a powerful tool.

The foods we eat have a tremendous ability to either bring us into balance physically and emotionally or to bring us out of balance. A food diary is a powerful tool to bring awareness to our eating patterns and habits. Understand what and how to eat is important to wellness, people who eat high quality nutritious food naturally have higher energy, stronger digestion and clear thinking than those who eat fast or junk food.

Keeping a food diary is a great way to help you stick to your food plan and helps you to keep on track. You probably think that you know exactly what you eat everyday. By seeing exactly what you eat and how you feel after you have eaten, you can begin to cut certain types of food out of your meals that you may have an intolerant with and help you recognize your food habits, triggers and help you understand real hunger.

You may not realize it right away, but over time, your food diary will actually make you want to eat healthier and help you to look at food in a whole new way. A Nutrition journal will teach you to listen to your body far beyond food and other forms of nourishment which we call these primary food they are need to fill your soul and satisfy your hunger for a full happy healthy life.

When you balance your primary food with love, fun and excitement, making food you eat secondary.

How to use the Nutrition Journal.

It starts with practice and grows into a habit.                                                   Commit to an Schedule. An important aspect of the long-term success of your nutritional journal is the commitment with which you use it. You can either enter as you go through your day into an on-line food journal or you can keep a small notebook and manually log all your feelings, food and drinks during the day and then enter the information into the food journal during the evening or before bed. The important thing is to find a method that works for you and to stick with it.

Be honest with yourself, trust your body it has the answers, the little changes you make everyday will leave to a huge transformation most of all relax have fun and be yourself.

Morning intentions Live with Intentions.

Make yourself the promise to live form intentions and less from habit.

I believe that beginning your day by setting (or re-setting) your intention can help you further connect with your beliefs and then incorporate them throughout the day.

Sit in the quiet stillness of the morning light and start your waking hours silently setting your intention that will take you through your day.

Evenings Reflections.

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning- Albert Einstein.

Our thoughts and thinking patterns eventually define our emotions and drive our behavior. Life is hectic we all need a time and space in our days to be still collect ourselves. An evening reflection ritual can add to everyone’s quality of life. The important thing is to have a devoted time and quiet place every evening.

Weekly Check-ins.

Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones-Phillips Brooks.

Each week’s check-in gives us an opportunity to notice, acknowledge and celebrate our successes and/or to notice and acknowledge what’s not working.

The idea of a food journal may seem hard work, unpleasant, or terrifying to some people that really do not want to look at how they eat.   You may have feelings of fear, loneliness, anger or failure attached to what you eat.

You may be surprised that food has an even bigger emotional charge for you than you realized.

A great saying is “What you don’t measure you cant manage”.

Just give it a try for one-week and watch the magic happen.

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10 Top Foods to Curb Cravings and Increase Dopamine

second-brain“Cravings come from the brain not the belly.

Over the last few weeks we have discussed the four main factors that cause cravings. The physiological, Psychological, Emotional and Lifestyle. We also had a look at the ways we can attempt to overcome these factors. We know that food cravings has nothings to do with willpower and that cravings is not hunger.

One of my tips as to avoid refined foods, especially sugar. There are certain foods like refined carbohydrate that can take your blood sugar levels up and down again quickly, stimulating your cravings, and in turn cause the body to gain weight, fatigue and hormone imbalance. Which in the long term can cause depression, anxiety. This run havoc on your immune system stifles your vitality and overall health.

We talked about eating a well balance diet.This week I want to share with you my 10 Top Foods that helped me curb my cravings and addrees them before that got out of control.

These foods help balance our sugar levels and keep us feeling full all day.protiens

  1. Protein.Include protein, in every meal. High protein foods will also keep you feeling satisfied longer and therefore help you eat less throughout the day, a meal with carbs alone causes blood sugar spikes and crashes. This leaves you feeling tired, hungry, and craving more which means you’ll eat a lot more and gain more weight.????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
  2. Water. Water can be a powerful appetite suppressant. When you get dehydrated you will get very hungry because your body will increase your hunger pangs in an attempt to get more water to re-hydrate itself so make sure you’re drinking enough water to prevent hunger and cravings. Another great tip is to drink about ½ litre of water before your meals this helps you feel fuller quicker, so you’ll eat less if you drink a glass when you first start feeling hunger.
  3. Avocado. “Avocados provide nearly 20 essential nutrients. They taste absolutely delicious and are extremely versatile The healthy monounsaturated fats found in avocados, along with the fiber, make them a wonderful food to keep you feeling fuller for longer.
  4. Nuts, Seeds and Nut Butters. Not only are nuts extremely nutritious, but like the avocado the healthy fats they contain help to stave off hunger.
  5. TRU-RA-Cacao-PowderCacao.  They contain an amazing amount of CHROMIUM, more than ANY other food!) Chromium aids in weight loss (because it helps metabolism and reduces food cravings)
  6. Seaweed. Spirulina is a blue green algae, known to produce a feeling of fullness and reduce the craving for sweets and carbohydrates, taken 30 minutes before a meal it can noticeably reduce the appetite. It contains 65% – 75% easily digestible protein and a rich source of vitamins, minerals including tyrosine. Seaweeds pack a lot of nutrients into a very small volume of food – since algae contains 1,000 times more nutrition than anything else in the world.
  7. Jens Noodles; High in the super fibre GM , they fill you up with out any calories, slow down the release of glucose, keeps you from being hungry.
  8. Berries; Blueberries are packed with flavor and fibre. For added snacking satisfaction, combine them with nuts to conquer both sweet and savoury cravings with one blow. raspberry-ketone-lean-free-shippingRaspberry; Ketone ketone is the primary aroma compound of red raspberries. This compound regulates adiponectin, a protein used by the body to regulate metabolism. Raspberry ketone causes the fat within your cells to get broken up more effectively, helping your body burn fat faster. The recommended dose is 100mg per day. To get the same benefit from the whole fruit, you’d have to consume 90 pounds of raspberries.
  9. Glutamine. Is an amino acid. Due to its ability to cross the blood brain barrier, provides energy for the brain, reduces your sugar craving in less than 10 minutes. Food sources of glutamine include cabbage, beets, beef, chicken, fish, beans, and dairy products.
  10. spicesSpice it up. Use Cinnamon, Coriander,, nutmeg, cloves and cardamom will naturally sweeten your foods and reduce cravings. Cinnamon is highly effective at helping to stabilize blood sugar levels. Cayenne – This hot spice not only heats up your dishes, it heats up your body and raises your metabolism, helping you burn fat faster.


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Chicken Coconut Coleslaw

Chicken Coconut Coleslaw

Ingredients: serves 2

  • 1-Bag of Jens Noodle Angel Hair
  • 200 g chicken breast, cut into chunks
  • ¼ cup coconut cream
  • ¼ head of cabbage
  • ½ onion finely
  • 5 stems of mint finely
  • small chunk of Ginger
  • 1 clover garlic
  • 1 tablespoons coconut oil
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Juice for 1/2 lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste

The Fun

  1. Turn on the tunes.
  2. Prepare Jens Noodles as per instructions, allow then to drain.
  3. In a food processor blend the cabbage. Onion and carrot.
  4. In a small processor or coffee grinder, blend the ginger, garlic and mint.
  5. Heat up the pan, add coconut oil.
  6. Add the mint, ginger, garlic ,
  7. add the vegetable, and sauté for about 3 mins
  8. Add the coconut cream, lime.
  9. Turn off the heat and pop in the noodles, season with salt and pepper
  10. Serve with love and eat with awareness.
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Kangaroo, Kale with Jens Noodles

 A Yummy meal ready in 10 minutes

Saute Kale, Kangaroo with Jens Noodles

Kangorro Noodles _1717Ingredients

  • 1 pkt Jen’s noodles
  • 220 grams of Kangaroo, sliced
  • ½ bunch Kale, washed, broken into chunks
  • ½ onion, sliced
  • 6 mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ Capsicum, sliced
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • Coconut amino
  •  1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice

Why Kangaroo? Kangaroo meat is high in protein and minerals, especially iron and zinc omega-3’s, important source of several B-group vitamins, namely riboflavin, niacin, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12. Kangaroo meat could well be one of the highest known sources of the healthy fat CLA (conjugated linoleic acid). It is very lean, with less than 2% fat.

Did you know that is a food practice called Kangatarianism?. Kangatarianism is a philosophy of eating which excludes meat except kangaroo on environmental and ethical grounds. Kangatarian follows in the footsteps of other 21st century neologisms in the same domain, such as pescetarian (a vegetarian who eats fish), flexitarian (a vegetarian who eats meat very occasionally), ecovore (a person who eats in an environmentally-conscious way) and locavore (a person who only eats locally-sourced food).

Why steaming your kale is best:  Kale can provide you with some special cholesterol-lowering benefits if you will cook it by steaming. The fiber-related components in kale do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when they’ve been steamed. When this binding process takes place, it’s easier for bile acids to be excreted, and the result is a lowering of your cholesterol levels. Raw kale still has cholesterol-lowering ability—just not as much.

The Fun

  1. Turn on the music
  2. Prepare Jens Noodles as the pkt directions, allow to drain
  3. Pop the kale in a bowl, massage with the olive oil and lemon allow to soak
  4. Heat up a non stick pan on medium heat and add the olive oil
  5. Add the onion, garlic and allow to sauté
  6. Pop in the Kangaroo, capsicum and kale and simmer on low for 5 minutes
  7. Add the mushrooms, and coconut amino
  8. Add Jen’s Noodles
  9. Turn off the heat, mix well
  10. Serve with love and eat with awareness
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Reclaim The Power From Food

Understanding your food cravings Part (2)

CRAVINGS-COVER

The last post Why Can’t I stop eating Chocolate? we had a look into the culprits behind our food cravings.

This week we talk about how to take charge of your life without turning to food! When you’re so busy taking care of others and just doing what’s exspected of you, food can feel like your best escape.

Learn how to break the vicious cycle of  Physiological, Psychological, Emotional, Lifestyle and Behavioural Habits and end yo-yo dieting. It is not about willpower if you’re like so many, you may count on willpower alone to end the struggle over food. Your willpower will break down… eventually. If deprivation and berating yourself are the means to an end, is that really the end you’re looking for?

Discover the way that leads to the end you really want. Taking care of yourself in a way that feels better than food ever could, and feeling the freedom that truly liberates you, body, mind and soul.

Dealing with Physiological: The body talk.

One of the reasons we crave a food because our bodies are screaming out for nutrients, such as vitamins or protein and water. Our bodies are depleted, and cravings ensure that its needs are met. These are physically based cravings.

These are some ways we can attempt to overcome physiological causes of food cravings, they include:

  • Eating a well balance diet. Include as much variety as possible to ensure that we are more likely to be getting all the nutrients our body needs.
  • Take a good vitamin and mineral supplements. If you feel that your balanced diet is still not delivering the nutrients you require, consider taking vitamin or mineral supplements.
  • Never skip meals. If you skip meals, this will lead to your blood sugar levels going abnormally low, this will lead to an unstoppable desire to eat lots of food .
  • Avoid  refined foods, especially sugar. When you eat sugar, your brain releases opioids, a natural chemical that leads to feelings of pleasure and happiness. Scientific research into drug addiction has shown that heroin and morphine stimulate your brain in the same way as does sugar. Sugar and other specific foods help in developing a physical cravings, sugar causes a physical cravings for sugar.
  • Exercise moderation in all foods we eat. Overeating high starch foods may cause a greater insulin release and may lead you to crave and overeat when it comes to your next meal.
  • Drink plenty of water. Sometimes hunger is a signal that we’re thirsty. Drink a glass of water and wait 10 minutes
  • Avoid certain sensory triggers. For instance, avoid walking past certain fast food outlets on your way home that you know will tempt you.
  • Get these foods out of your life. Those who are addictive have to learn to shy away from foods that cause them cravings. Studies have shown that when people who are hooked on specific foods through a biochemical process of physical craving and— need to do the work of eliminating these specific foods from their body and then her life.                                        
  • Balance your hormones. Hormones play a main role in food cravings. Serotonin is the hormone responsible for releasing happiness and can greatly affect your mood. Therefore, those who are typically serotonin-deficient, will turn to food to increase serotonin levels. High levels of serotonin help control appetite, satisfy cravings, and provide a feeling of well-being and inner calm.
  • Increase your Serotonin. If you think you may be serotonin-deficient and want to increase your serotonin levels.
  • Stop the negative talk! Calming and positive thoughts lead to an increase in serotonin
  • Stress Less. When stress is increase, this leads to an increase in cortisol, which leads to deposits of abdominal fat and makes it more difficult to lost weight or keep it off.
  • Attend to your gut imbalances. Serotonin is made in a healthy gut. The gut contains 100 million neurons – more than the spinal cord. Major neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, glutamate, norephinephrine and nitric oxide are in the gut.
  • Get some sunlight. 10 minutes a day helps regulate hormones such as melatonin and serotonin. Melatonin helps the body sleep while serotonin effects mood. Too much or too little melatonin or serotonin can lead to decreased energy, depression and fatigue
  • Have fun. Go dancing,watch a funny movie.
  • Get a good night sleep. Do you sleep enough? 7 – 9 hours of sleep is vital to your health. Sleep deprivation ↓ leptin, a hormone that suppresses appetite, and ↑ grehlin, a hormone that makes people want to eat.
  • Exercise everyday. Exercise will boost serotonin levels, Lowers cortisol, dopamine and norepinephrine, which leads to appetite suppression, stabilizes moods, which reduces cravings. Exercise also naturally raises endorphins and control NPY (neuropeptide Y) that lowers anxiety and carbohydrate cravings and increases feelings of contentment.

  Psychological: It is all in our head.

Some strategies for dealing with mental causes of cravings include:

  • Find ways to distract yourself. Engage your mind elsewhere. Call a friend, go for a walk, sweep the floor, do some gardening. I turn up the radio and dance, find creative ways to distract yourself.
  • Avoid TV adds. Our mind simply responding to mental triggers such as fast food advertising and magazines.
  • Have a large glass of water or seltzer with lemon and wait 10 minutes. Not only will the drink give you the sensation of being fuller, I will help you to know if you’ve been mistaking thirst for hunger.
  • Take responsibility for your actions. At the core of your being, an acceptance of your own personal biochemistry is critical. Once you take on personal responsibility for your biochemistry, you take charge of your cravings and compulsive eating.
  • Stop. Before you give in to your craving, remind yourself of your goals.
  • Simply brushing your teeth or use a tongue scrapper or distracting yourself from thinking about food. This also helps remove any food and bacteria that can cause cravings.

Dealing with Emotional : The Gut feelings.

Underlying emotional issues can often be very complex and therefore not easy to overcome. Having said that, some strategies for dealing with emotional related food cravings include:

  • Being aware of times when you are managing your emotions with food. I feel it’s important to be honest with ourselves about our emotions. We need to face the emotion and then move on.
  • Keeping a food diary. Emotional eaters must become aware of their motivations for wanting to eat. A great way to be more aware of your emotions surrounding food is to keep a journal and record how you feel before you eat. Write down what you eat, how much you eat, when you eat, how you’re feeling when you eat and how hungry you are. Over time, you may see patterns emerge that reveal negative eating patterns and triggers to avoid.
  • Addressing any emotional issues as soon as possible. When we recognize, what the emotional issue you’re been struggling with. Dig deeper ask questions like What makes me so frustrated or anger? What do I feel I’m missing out on? and Why am I taking my anger out on myself?. Usually the answers appear right away.
  • Challenge the Food Police. Scream a loud “NO” to thoughts in your head that declare you’re “good” for eating minimal calories or “bad” because you ate a piece of chocolate cake..
  • Manage stress. Explore using different relaxation techniques like exercise, EFT, dessertsmindfulness techniques, deep breathing, yoga, Pilates, aromatherapy, massage or meditation to help us cope with stress. Stress is also a common reason given for overeating or emotional eating. Two out of three people eat more under stress. Plus, we don’t usually overeat vegetables when we’re stressed. (Did you notice that “stressed” is “desserts” spelled backwards?)
  • Not a good idea using food as a reward. Many times, people make the mistake of rewarding themselves with an indulgent treat for sticking to a healthy eating plan for a designated amount of time. Using foods as a reward for eating healthy is counterproductive to the task at hand. Instead, allow yourself to indulge in special treats every so often for no reason at all. This will help you keep healthy eating in perspective and recognize indulgences as just that.

Food won’t fix any of these feelings. It may comfort for the short-term, distract from the pain, or even numb you into a food hangover. But food won’t solve the problem.


Dealing with Lifestyle
: Behavioural

In addition to the above, ways to deal with some lifestyle related causes of food cravings include:

  • Recognize your eating habits. Being aware of any behavioral or unconscious eating patterns like’ cleaning your plate’ or having desert even though you are full. Opening the fridge in between meals, Refrain from lingering at your table, turn off the lights in your kitchen at night and avoid hanging out there.
  • Avoid skipping meals. This will lead to your blood sugar levels going abnormally low and intense cravings start. This also this causes an increase in ghrelin (a neurotransmitter that sets up an irresistible urge to eat) and also lowers neuropeptide Y, which increases carbohydrate cravings.
  • Eat consciously – Avoid eating in front of the TV or while busy with other activities. Eat slowly so your brain can get the message that your stomach is full.
  • Eat healthy Fats. As you eat more dietary fat, this will increase endorphins (the body’s natural “high”, which gives pain relief and pleasure).
  • Drink alcohol in moderation. Excessive alcohol consumption contributes to lowered levels of the brain chemical serotonin. When serotonin is low, the usual result is carbohydrate cravings,
  • Keeping healthy snacks around the house or office.
  • Figuring out what works for us and repeating that behaviour.
  • Again watching less TV and other Influences.
  • Keeping food records in a food diary.
  • Practicing portion control
  • Avoiding very low calorie diets. As you lower calories to lose weight, you starve your brain first and that depletes serotonin.

Bio-individuality

is a philosophy is that there’s no one-size-fits-all diet. Everybody is a unique individual with highly individualized nutritional requirements.  Which  helps us  to achieve optimal biochemical balance, most people need the assistance of a professional to design a food plan. A food plan that provides structure, designed to re-balance your own personal biochemistry. Eating should provide the nutrients to create energy, physical well-being, mental alertness, and spiritual growth. Most people receiving this type of nutritional support achieve lasting success. if you would like to know more email me info@healthcoachjen.com 

In my next blog I look forward to sharing with you my 10 tips to help reclaim your power over food.

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Raw Kale Pesto with Jen’s Noodles

The Yummiest Pesto EVER! (It has Warning Label)

Raw Kale Pesto with Jens Noodles

kale pesto

Ingredients

  • 1 pkt 250g Jens Noodles Angel Hair
  • ¼- ½ cup chopped walnuts (activated and organic is best)
  • ½ teaspoons Himalayan salt
  • 1 bunch of kale, stems removed, (organic is best)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Ground black pepper and cayenne pepper to taste

Why Kale? OMG where do I start ? It is well-known that leafy green vegetables are extremely nutritious and jam-packed with a wide array of vitamins. Energetically speaking, leafy greens contain a high concentration of chlorophyll, the “life-blood” of our planet…and Kale is the king of them! It’s never surprising to see studies on diet and disease that say “vegetables—especially green leafy vegetables—are associated with a lower risk of…” as they have a high concentration of Vitamins A, C and K, folate, potassium, magnesium, iron, lutein and phytochemicals. Phytochemicals are components of fruits or vegetables that may help to prevent disease, and perhaps even help to treat some disorders. Kale goes a step further and is also an incredible source of calcium, folic acid, vitamin B6, manganese, and potassium. For a green, Kale is unusually high in fiber and in many ways is a true superfood, and certainly one of the most nutritious foods known to man!

Why Activated Walnuts ?

Activated nuts are Soaked Raw Nuts: Submerge them in filtered water for about eight hours then rinse them thoroughly before eating them, Benefits include increased enzyme activity, greater absorption of the food’s nutrients by the body and increased digestibility helps to increase the protein content, removes harmful tannic acids.. helps makes the nuts softer, more buttery nut.

Walnuts are packed with tryptophan, an amino acid your body needs to create the feel-great chemical serotonin; they are one of the best source of protein. They are rich in Fiber, B Vitamins, magnesium and antioxidants like vitamin E. Particularly, they are a rich source of phytochemical substances like melatonin, Ellagic acid, carotenoids etc. They have positive health effects against cancer, aging, inflammation and different neurological disorders. They are also rich in protein, vitamins, minerals and healthy fiber. These vital nutrients help to reduce the risk of heart disease and other neurological disorders.

The Fun

  1. Turn on the music
  2. Wash the kale and soak, about 5 minutes.
  3. Prepare Jen’s Noodles, Rinse and allow them to dry.
  4. In a blender or food processor, add garlic, walnuts and
  5. Add the squeezed and drained kale.
  6. Whiz until well combined, pour in oil in a steady stream, and pulse until combined.
  7. Add salt, lemon, pulse, have a taste.
  8. Then add the cheese and peppers, another quick pulse, have another taste.
  9. Spoon about 1-2 tablespoon of kale pesto over Jens Noodles mix well.
  10. Serve with love and eat with awareness.
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Why can’t I stop eating Chocolate?

Understanding your food Cravings (part 1)

chocolate-615x340

I am asked all the time about food cravings. Over the next month, I am doing a series of talks on Understand Your Cravings, so I thought I would share with you some of interesting information I will be covering. There is so much valuable content in this series, so have broken it down into relevant topics and bite size pieces, haha!

Has this happened to you? Your sitting at your computer totally absorbed in your project, when out of nowhere, something hits your brain like a Mack truck: chips, YOU DON’T EAT chips? At first you get a picture of them, yes Chips, and then you start to smell them. Are you with me on this? And then next moment, you start to salver like Pavlov’s dog then a strong feeling comes over you that totally consumers your brain! If you don’t get chips now, you might die or hurt someone, well at the least a severe  mood change comes over you. The first thought is OH NO! I’m on a diet!  So you go on fighting these cravings it for about 10 minutes or so?… Sound familiar?

Well your not alone, food cravings are very common: surveys  estimate that almost 100% of young women and nearly 70% of young men report having experienced cravings. The time of day also dictates food cravings — late afternoon or early evening is the prime time when cravings tend to occur. Hormones are thought to play a role as well. For example, during pregnancy and during certain times of a woman’s menstrual cycle, food cravings are quite common.

So why is it so hard for us to STOP devouring the whole block of chocolate or the entire packet of Doritos? Even though we want so badly, ‘not to’ too. There are multiple factors that contribute to why we get certain cravings. By knowing what our individual triggers are, we can be well equipped to understand and over time eliminate them.

What are Cravings?

A food craving is an intense desire to consume a specific food, stronger than normal, regular hunger. Cravings are both behavioural and biochemical. Where as hunger is felt in the stomach, cravings are felt in the head. You can be stuffed in the stomach, but still have cravings for food in the head. Have you ever eaten a full meal and felt stuffed, but still had an unrelenting urge to have desserts? That’s a craving. What about when you, just eat because you are bored, or lonely? That’s also a craving.

The main causes of food cravings are surrounded by these 4 main factors:

  1. Physiological factors – Body
  2. Psychological factors – Mind
  3. Emotional factors – Second brain
  4. Lifestyle factors – Behavioural

And for some of us it could be a combination of all these factors.

Physiological: The body talk.

The Physiological factors believed to be responsible for many food cravings include:

Our body is lacking certain nutrients, low blood sugar levels, therefore our energy stores are becoming depleted and our body is trying to fix this by craving carbohydrates.               Low levels of serotonin, (a hormone responsible for feelings of pleasure and relaxation).    Our body simply wants a particular food taste, texture, aroma or temperature.                      Or responding to sensory triggers, like smells and visual cues.

Psychological: It is all in our head.

In addition to physiological factors causing cravings, there are also a number of psychological factors including: Constantly thinking about foods that we totally deprive ourselves of or label ‘off limits’ and BAD. Some diets that severely reduce kilojoules or calories and totally forbid some types of food can lead to some of these causes to occur, such as constantly thinking about prohibited foods. Our mind responds to mental triggers such as fast food advertising on TV, magazines and social groups. Here is a great study by Flinders University, Australia. They found some studies suggesting that the mental imagery of food (the vivid images we get when we crave) hold the key.

Emotional: The Gut feelings.

Food cravings often stem from undernourished needs for love, fun and excitement.

Researchers have found that the gut can function like a second brain influencing the nervous system and behavior. The gut has a mind of its own, the “Enteric Nervous System” (ENS)

Emotional issues connected to food cravings usually fall into one of these categories:

  • Stress, tension, anxiety, fear or impatience.
  • Depression or feeling blue.
  • Feeling tired, having low energy levels.
  • Lack of fun, play, excitement, or recreation; or too much work and not enough play.
  • A desire for love, selection, appreciation, romance or sexual satisfaction.
  • Anger, resentment, bitterness or frustration.
  • Emptiness, insecurity or a desire for comfort.

In the amazing book “Constant Craving A-Z”, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.  Talks about..

THE FOUR PRIMARY EMOTIONS UNDERNEATH EMOTIONAL OVEREATING

These  “FATS feelings” are the primary triggers for emotional overeating.                            Four emotions form the core of emotional overeating: (fear, anger, tension and shame) (FATS). Fear is the root emotion in the FATS feelings. Anger, tension and shame are all extensions of fear. We feel angry because we fear losing love in the form of something or someone valuable to us; we feel tension because we are afraid of trusting or because we’ve walked away from our Divine path; we feel shame because we fear we are inadequate.

  • FEAR: Insecurity, walking on eggshells, generalised fears, abandonment fears, existential fears, control issues, sexual fears, worry, anxiety, depression, intimacy fears.
  • ANGER: At another person, toward an injustice, toward self, feeling betrayed, feeling ripped off, feeling abused.
  • TENSION: Stress, frustration, old anger turned into bitterness, old anger turned into resentment, jealousy, impatience, overworked without an emotional release such as fun.
  • SHAME: Self-blame, low self-esteem, self-loathing, lack of trust in one’s own competence or goodness, assuming other people won’t like you, feeling like you don’t deserve good things.

Lifestyle: Behavioural

As well as physical, emotional and mental causes of cravings, there are also many lifestyle factors that can contribute to these feelings, including:

Habits like eating dessert after dinner even when you are full.Standing in front of the fridge with the door open waiting for something yummy to jump out. Eating large popcorn, ice cream and a coke at the movies. When I was a kipper (child) we were not allowed to leave the table until our plates were clean. Which created a habit to eat even thought I was full. Having an after dinner, glass or 3 of wine or beer every night.

Cultural and social aspects – because of their culture, many people have strong expectations to have certain foods at certain times and places. Socially when you go to a party you feel rude if you declined any offerings of food and say “no thank you”.

Unconscious Eating – like in front of the TV, computer, chatting on the phone or eating while driving the car. Skipping meals so you can loss weight. Not eating certain foods you love and labeling them as forbidden foods. These are just a few of our Life style factors.

When we understand the culprits behind our food cravings, you can help control them.

Remember, don’t be a slave to the foods you crave!

In my next blog I look forward to sharing with you some useful tips to help understand your cravings, and ways to conquer them.

Resources

“Constant Craving A-Z”, by Doreen Virtue, PhD.
http://www.cumc.columbia.edu/dept/gsas/anatomy/Faculty/Gershon/
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041108025155.htm
 
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Jen’s Noodles Fried With Roasted Sesame and Kale

photoWondering what to make for dinner tonight?

Do you want something that is quick to make,”10 minutes” taste yummy and  is packed with nutritional goodies?

This is one of my favorite recipes, it is very easy to make and everyone loves it.

I made it this week for the ladies at ABBBC Sunshine Coast, it was a huge hit.

Ingredients for 2 

1 x 250g Jens Noodles                                                                                                                           ½ onion sliced                                                                                                                                          ½ red capsicum                                                                                                                                     ½ green capsicum
¼ cup Sesame Seeds
½ bunch kale, thinly shredded                                                                                                            1 tbsp Coconut Oil
½ tbsp Coconut Aminos, Tamari or brags aminos
A few sprinkles of Chinese Five Spice

How a look at why you want to add these nutritional foods.

Why Sesame seeds? These tiny little seeds are high in protein, fiber, vitamin B-complex, magnesium, calcium, iron, copper, zinc and manganese. Sesame are also especially high in mono-unsaturated fatty acid, oleic acid.

Why Kale? Kale is delicious, versatile, and incredibly nutritious. Kale contains beta-carotene and the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin—which are associated with eye health—as well as potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber, iron, and calcium. Plus, you get 2 grams of protein in a serving.

Why capsicum? Capsicum increases the metabolism, it is an important source of vitamin A and vitamin C, more vitamin than an orange. These two vitamins are powerful antioxidants.

Why Coconut amino? Coconut Amino Sauce is a deliciously healthy alternative to Soy Sauce, with 30% less Sodium and 17 important naturally occurring Amino Acids.

The Fun

  1. Turn on the music.
  2. Prepare Jen noodles as the packet directions, and allow them to drain
  3. Heat up a non stick pan, dry roast the sesame seeds until light brown, then set them aside.
  4. In the hot non-stick pan, pop in the noodles, dry fry until most of the water evaporates, just a few minutes, add the coconut amino and the five spices, then set them aside.
    (I don’t always do this, I found for this recipe it gives them a pleasant taste.)
  5. Add the coconut oil to the pan and sauté the onions.
  6. Pop the noodles back into the pan.
  7. Then add the shredded kale and capsicums.
  8. With your tongs, toss for a few minutes so that they blend evenly until the kale has softened, usually 4-5 minutes.
  9. Add roasted sesame seeds turn off the heat and stir them in.
  10. Serve with love and eat with awareness.

I  add Chicken to mine in the photo, you can add any other protein that you desire.

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