Category Archives: Healthy Food!

I’ve moved!

If you found me I am thrilled! But I just wanted to let you know I have moved sites. Not because I haven’t loved working here but decided it was time for a change and an update!

So you can now find me at www.carolinesilk.com.

Click on the above link and I look  forward to seeing you there.

Be Healthy & Happy..You Deserve to be!

Caroline

Green Food Matters!

I’m back!

I know I have been remiss in my postings and for that I apologise. Life has been particularly busy of late, as the beginning of the year is for most, and I’m juggling just a few green apples in the air!! You may remember I mentioned I am reworking my website and doing some exciting things with my business and all will be revealed in the coming months. In the meantime, I will endeavour to feed you with a bunch of healthy information.

You all know your greens are good for you but have you considered including these in your daily diet?

Hungry for Change is a website I admire and they are always supplying fantastic nutritional advice ..like this …enjoy! x

1. Seaweed

Often overlooked because it is not a land-dweller, seaweed is insanely good for you. While providing a whopping amount of vitamins and minerals, seaweed’s golden ticket is iodine. Iodine is found in very few foods and is essential to a healthy thyroid. With more people avoiding iodised salt for a slew of reasons, mild iodine deficiency is growing more common. When deficient, a person may have difficulty losing weight, feel fatigued, perhaps depressed — experiencing general thyroid malfunction. Whip up a tasty seaweed salad for lunch to keep your thyroid chugging along.

2. Micro greens

Move over regular arugula (commonly called rocket)! Micro greens are simply mini versions of your favourite produce, and man do they pack a punch! As “toddler plants,” they contain more vitamins and flavour than their mature counterparts. There is an endless variety of micro greens from which to choose, from mustard and watercress, to turnip and sunflower — each with a unique, tantalising flavour. As an added bonus, micro greens are crazy easy to grow in your kitchen, and will supply your meals with some tasty, uber healthy green nutrition.

3. Lacinato Kale (aka Tuscan/Dinosaur kale)

This is your grocery-store-kale’s dark, jurassic-looking cousin. With 100 percent of your recommended daily allowance of vitamins A and K, and 88 percent of your vitamin C requirement, the rich compounds of kale have been linked to cancer prevention. It is a little sweeter and nuttier than your regular kale, so go ahead and experiment!

4. Moringa

Recently growing in popularity, moringa is a leaf that is chock-full of goodies. It assists with blood sugar stabilisation, lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, is loaded with energising and depression-fighting B vitamins, and containing 90 nutrients that benefit the human body. It is antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant-rich. Cook with the oil, or flavour meals with the leaves. Never heard of it? Discover all of the wonders of moringa here.

5. Avocados

OK, so you may be pretty familiar with avocados, but they are so delicious and nutrient-dense that they deserve a mention. They are full of monounsaturated fats, which increase satiety and can assist with weight loss. Avocados are anti-inflammatory, blood sugar regulators, and may even prevent strokes. Buy them once for the high amount of potassium, fibre, B vitamins, and vitamins K and C; keep buying them for their glorious, creamy texture and your newfound obsession with guacamole.

Green foods are good for you, but they don’t have to be boring. Trying a new green every week can keep your meals interesting and your body healthy.

Avocados are my absolute favourite – and I eat almost everyday!   What is your favourite green????

Be Healthy & Happy! 

Caroline

 

Entering a new decade and what it may bring….or not!

October 2013 has been a very big month for me! Returning home from my sojourn en France; assimilating back into mother role…slowly; having a “special” birthday that I am told stands for something… and that I have successfully celebrated over approx. 21 days… Busy!

Then guess what?  November follows October, and all of a sudden we are celebrating all things “horsey” at the Spring Carnival in Melbourne….gorgeous dresses, hats and fascinators, delicious nibble bits and …obligatory champagnes!

End result of all this fabulous fun…. mmmm… dare I type … let’s just say a softer belly best describes my predicament! Ooh what to do?

1) Do not panic! This is not a permanent state of affairs!

2) Return immediately to daily exercise routine of walking (aim =10,000+ steps/day) and perhaps throw in a couple of 20 minute strength training sessions at the gym!

3) Return to usual way of eating – clean, natural, nutrient rich food.

4) Eliminate mindless snacking from daily activities..serves no purpose other than make belly softer!

5) Reconsider/reassess alcohol intake… mmm.. that didn’t take long!

END RESULT: Soft belly gone…..I hope…will let you know how that one goes!

Interestingly it is at this “time” in a woman’s life, this supposed birthday milestone that I’ve just celebrated, that is meant to signal the beginning of change. Change in body (again inside and out), change in mind and potentially change in life’s purpose.

I have seriously considered starting a new blog – Fifty, Fabulous and FlailingFalling...Flying! – a place where I would document all of these changes as they happen to me and my fabulous friends.  I have not ruled it out completely, but it may be that this blog morphs into something that allows me to post my “50 something” musings as they happen… time will tell. But for now.. I am fifty..it’s only a number..I do feel healthy and fabulous (not looking at the belly!)

So bring it on!

Be Happy & Healthy!

Caroline

 

 

Feeling a little bloated………..?

Water is to me the fluid of life and its health benefits reign supreme. Sometimes however, for various reasons you may be holding onto too much water resulting in that bloated feeling and/or swollen legs, arms, ankles and face. It is the accumulation of excess water in your body tissues that is the culprit. Here are some of the potential causes:

  • PMS- could be either pre menstrual or peri menopause! (Gentlemen you cannot use this excuse!)
  • High salt levels -1 part salt attracts 4 parts water 1:4
  • High sugar diet (including alcohol)
  • Thyroid issues – potentially under-active
  • Hormone imbalances – progesterone levels are on the low side
  • Stress

All is not lost – there are changes that you can make to your diet to reduce water retention. I would try these first then if the problems persists, see your medical practitioner to test for thyroid and/or hormone imbalances.

So what to do, what to do…?

  1. REDUCE SALT INTAKE:

If you are a big salt eater then this could be your guy!!  Cut it down (not out) – aim to be less than 1000mg/day.  Check all nutrition labels for sodium content as it in hides in products like salad dressings/sauces/mayo/bread/pasta. Don’t add salt to cooking or be heavy handed at the table.

2.REDUCE EXCESS STARCHY CARBS – a high starch refined diet, think lots of bread, pasta etc etc can play havoc with both your blood sugar and salt levels. Cut back – your waistline will also love you for it!

3.REDUCE CAFFEINE – INC. COFFEE AND TEAS (not herbal) Alas even though caffeine is a diuretic (makes you pee) and you would think that would help the problem – it’s the opposite! It makes you body hold onto water not let it go!

4. REDUCE ALCOHOL –  Alas too much alcohol (think sugar), dehydrates the body therefore the body in panic, holds onto water!!  Those A.F.D’s you have been thinking about are looking better and better!

Next post I will tell you what to increase in your diet to help combat water retention.

Be Healthy & Happy !

Caroline

(image:google)

 

 

Monday’s Musings: Dodgy Diet Foods!

The article below has just been released in Australian Food News. Food manufactures (OK most..) are on a never ending journey to put “food like products” on our supermarket shelves that are meant to be a healthier option! Consumers expect that will be the case, often with no questions asked.  Not so….

CHOICE says “dodgy” diet foods may be contributing to weight gain

  • July 22, 2013 . 
  • Sophie Langley

Consumer group CHOICE has conducted a review of ‘diet’ foods, which it says shows that “hundreds of products on our supermarket shelves” that claim to help consumers lose weight might actually be higher in kilojoules than the regular products.

According to CHOICE, Australian consumers spent $827 million on weight loss products in 2012.

“Food companies attract would-be dieters with terms such as ‘guilt-free’, ‘lean’, ‘balanced’, ‘healthy’, ‘less’ and ‘stay in shape’, but unfortunately this marketing jargon is meaningless if you are trying to count kilojoules,” said Tom Godfrey, Head of Media at CHOICE.

CHOICE said it compared a range of diet products including cottage cheese, fries, chips, ice cream, breakfast cereal and rice cakes. The consumer group said another concern was the “premium price” that often came with ‘diet’ foods.

“The first thing you notice when you look at diet products is that many tend to be highly processed, salty, sugary treat foods with little nutritional value,” Mr Godfrey said. “From jams and biscuits to salad dressings, they’re foods you’d assume a dieter should avoid, even with reduced kilojoules,” he said.

“With 80 per cent of weight-loss products purchased by women, they should be aware that ‘simply less’ could well mean more kilojoules, so it’s vital that if you want to watch your weight you need to read the nutritional panel on the pack,” Mr Godfrey said.

And the moral of the story is……. buy, grow, eat, real food. Food with one ingredient.. apples, almonds, avocado, sweet potatoe, yoghurt, grass fed beef, free range chicken etc etc etc. You know the drill……

Market in Paris!  (shot mine!!)

Market in Paris! (shot mine!)

Be Healthy & Happy!

Caroline

Eating in Season… better for you and better for the planet!

July 1: Pinch and a punch for the first of the month!!

6 months of 2013 gone… never to be repeated and 6 months left!! Is it because we are older that time passes at a greater speed each year? I suspect so but would be happier for another explanation if anyone out there has one!

Eating seasonally is soooooo important for many reasons, so I’ve decided at the beginning of each month I will let you know what is in season and share one of my favourite recipes that compliments one or more of the seasonal foods…enjoy!

Fruit

  • Avocados
  • Custard apples
  • Fuji apples
  • Grapefruit
  • Kiwifruit
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Mandarins
  • Nashi
  • Navel oranges
  • Pineapple
  • Pink lady apples
  • Pomegranates
  • Quinces
  • Red delicious apples
  • Rhubarb

Vegetables

  • Beetroot
  • Broccoli
  • Broccolini
  • Brown onions
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Celeriac
  • Celery
  • Chinese greens
  • Dutch carrots
  • English spinach
  • Fennel
  • Gai lan (Chinese broccoli)
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Jerusalem artichokes
  • Kumara or sweet potatoes
  • Leeks
  • Olives
  • Parsnips
  • Potatoes
  • Pumpkin
  • Silverbeet
  • Spinach
  • Witlof

 I am not sure where I got this recipe, but it is delicious and brings the humble often boring carrot into it’s own. I have served this in a small shot style glass or small cup while having pre-dinner drinks.

 Curried lentil, carrot and cashew soup! 
1.5 litres chick stock
750g carrots grated
3/4 cup red lentils rinsed and drained
1 tbs olive oil
1 large onion
1/2 cup unsalted cashews
1 tbs madras curry paste
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves and stems
1/2 cup Greek style yoghurt
fresh shredded coriander leaves for garnish

Method:    Bring the stock to the boil in a large saucepan.  Add the carrots and lentils, bring the mixture back to the boil, then simmer over low heat for about 8 minutes, or until the carrot and lentils are soft.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and cashews and cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, or until the onion is soft and browned.  Add the curry paste and coriander and cook for a further 1 minute, or until fragrant.  Stir the paste into the carrot and lentil mixture.

Transfer to a food processor or blender and process in batches until smooth or a little bit of crunch if you prefer.  Return the mixture to the pan and reheat over medium heat until hot.  Season to taste with seas salt and cracked black pepper and serve with a dollop of yoghurt and a sprinkling of coriander.

 Be Healthy & Happy!

Caroline

Maintaining Momentum on a Monday (I know it’s Tuesday but guess what? .. Corn based products accelerate aging!)

Now I am not talking about the humble corn on the cob which if cooked to perfection, and eaten covered in a delicious dob of butter (yes 100% butter au natural from the cow not from the machine!) and a sprinkle of pink sea salt …delicious! I am talking about the processed corn based products that you could be eating every day such as breakfast cereals, corn chips, tacos, corn oil and the dreaded HFCS – high fructose corn syrup – found in everything from your beloved can of soft drink to your off the shelf salad dressing.

These products also play havoc with your blood sugar levels – not to the same extent as wheat mentioned here, but enough to create those nasty by products called AGEs and therefore …drum-roll…. accelerate aging. HFCS is so nasty,  the fructose causes 10x more the formation of AGEs than glucose. And to add insult to injury, the Omega 3 to 6 ratio in these products is completely out of whack (too many Omega 6’s) which results in increased inflammation and oxidation…..here comes that wrinkly face…

So the moral of the story – stay away from all things processed and eat clean and fresh.. your body will love you for it!

 

Be Healthy & Happy

Caroline 

 

 

Maintaining Momentum on a Monday …and Sugar Again …and Weight Loss!

Continuing with my musings from last week here is another food  ..Surprise surprise it is sugar! Yes one of the foods that accelerates aging is sugar, all kinds of sugary foods. You can not be surprised by that ..surely?

Increased sugar in the body on a regular basis causes spikes in your blood sugar levels and you know the drill… there goes your insulin into overdrive, your fat burning capacity goes on holiday and AGE’s (those nasty little aging by products) go into over production .. here come the wrinkles, increased belly fat and the aging you cannot see – the damage going on under the surface. Not a very nice picture huh?

I have spoken all about sugar here and again here. So please feel free to remind yourself!

 

Be Healthy & Happy!

Caroline

 

 

 

Foods that Accelerate Aging …and perhaps De-accelerate Your Weight Loss Efforts!?!

Your body, besides many other things, is one great big chemistry lab! Every food we eat results in chemical reactions occurring throughout our body – many to the benefit of our overall health, some however, to our health’s detriment! If your diet is full of clean, fresh, unprocessed foods you will auger well, if your diet leans towards overly processed and the wrong type of foods you may not.

Eating the wrong foods on a regular basis, not only affects how you feel, it also affect how you look. In some cases you can look up to ten years older than your real age!! Let me explain…….

There are processes that go on inside your body that have an enormous impact on the rate which you age. Three processes in particular – glycation, inflammation and oxidation.

When you think of aging most people think of the superficial stuff – what the eye can see –  your face, your wrinkles, your hair loss, your deteriorating eyesight, your increasing waistline. There are however so many things that you cannot see – that lie beneath your skins’ surface. The state of your organs and how efficiently they function, the condition of your joints and bones and the rate of which they are are degrading and so, so much more.

When you glycate something you combine it with sugar. In the body, sugar combines with proteins and with fats. Glycation is a normal process and your body has it’s own way to deal with it.  If however there is too much sugar over a constant period, the glycation process damages body proteins, producing a nasty by-product called Advanced Glycation End Products (ironically -or not – referred to as AGEs). So can you see the connection? Your diet – the type of foods you eat – contributes to this process – high blood sugar levels over time dramatically increase AGEs in your body. And, AGEs accelerate the ageing process.

You may be surprised at the food groups that contribute to the aging process and in turn hinder your weight loss efforts. Over the coming posts I will discuss a few in detail.

1. Wheat – including whole wheat.

Modern wheat (compared with ancient wheat) is about 70% carbohydrate and lower in protein. The carbohydrate is made up of 75% amylopectinA and 25% amylose. AmylopectinA raises your blood sugar more than any other carbohydrate source on earth based on blood sugar response testing. One piece of bread is the equivalent of eating 3 tablespoons of sugar!!

This means that wheat-based foods such as breads, bagels, cereals, pastas, muffins, and other baked goods often cause much higher blood sugar levels than most other carbohydrate sources. The higher your average blood sugar levels are over time, the more AGEs are produced, the faster you age.

If weight loss is your thing – you know that one of the most important things is to ensure that you must keep your blood sugar levels on an even keel.  Increased insulin increases inflammation and the storage of your fat. The increased amount of gluten in bread (up 50% compared with ancient wheat) is also inflammatory and for some, highly inflammatory.  Internal inflammation, among many of the other damaging things it does, turns ON your fat programs by contributing to both insulin and leptin resistance. You see what I mean… are you confused yet..? If so I apologise.. but in short and in conclusion…modern wheat is not really working for you …it’s working against you.

Maybe consider consuming a little less?? I have!

Be Healthy & Happy!

Caroline 

 

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Healthy Ideas for Weight Loss on a Friday!

 

It’s the first day of February 2013… and I am back on line, at work, etc etc. Summer holidays have flown, kids are back at school, life is falling into that familiar day to day routine. All of a sudden you may have a little time to stop, take a deep breath and check in with how you are feeling, where your health is at. If weight loss is your thing, has that been on the back burner over the holidays? Did you take a break from exercising? Do you have some goals in place for 2013? Just some questions for you to ponder.. As I said in my last post, you hold a lot of power in your thoughts –  so make them positive, make them great! ………Those thoughts eventually become your actions and your destiny.

Now for those healthy ideas for weight loss. It would be very hard for one to argue the health benefits of eating processed foods (with me anyway)! I was sent this email over the holidays, it makes me smile, and it makes sense in it’s simplicity….enjoy x

It’s been said that God first separated the salt water from the fresh, made dry land,

planted a garden, made animals and fish… All before making a human. He made

and provided what we’d need before we were born. These are best & more powerful

when eaten raw. We’re such slow learners…

God left us a great clue as to what foods help what part of our body! God’s Pharmacy! Amazing!

A sliced Carrot looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines

look just like the human eye.. And YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.

 

A Tomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red.

All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopene and are indeed pure heart and blood food.

 

 Grapes hang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like a blood cell.

 All of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.

 

 

A Walnut looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper 

cerebrums and lower cerebellums. Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut are just like

the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than three (3) dozen

neuron-transmitters for brain function.

 

Kidney Beans actually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes,

they look exactly like the human kidneys.

 

Celery, Bok Choy, Rhubarb and many more look just like bones. These 

foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium

 If you don’t have enough sodium in your diet, the body pulls it

from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

Avocados, Eggplant and Pears target the health and function of the womb and cervix of the female- they look just like these organs.

Today’s research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this? It takes excatly nine (9) months to grow and avocado

from blossom to ripened fruit!! There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents

of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied & named 141 of them)

Figs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs


increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm

as well to overcome male sterility.

 

Sweet Potatoes look like the pancreas and actually balance the

glycemic index of diabetics.

 

Olives assist the health and function of the ovaries

Oranges , Grapefruits, and other Citrus fruits look just like the 

mammary glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.

Onions look like the body’s cells. Today’s research shows onions

help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce

tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, 

Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.

(photos compliments of google!)

Food for Thought?

Be Healthy & Happy!

Caroline