Healthy Living

Black Grapes and Red Cabbage Smoothie

 
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A beautifully delicious smoothie. The black grapes add a sweetness and the red cabbage has a peppery kick at the end. Great if you're new to smoothies and just discovering how versatile they can be. The sweetness from the grapes and banana should keep your sugar cravings at bay. And the grapes and red cabbage provide antioxidants which boost and promote good health. The flaxseed and goji berries provide essential fatty acids and amino acids too. And the purple colour indicates that this is a good choice for women with menstrual cramps.

Next time you want something sweet, why not reach for this instead?

 

Ingredients

11/2 cups black grapes

1 cup red cabbage, chopped

1 small banana, sliced

2 teaspoon flaxseed and goji berries

1/3 cup coconut or mineral water

3 or 4 mixed nuts (walnuts and brazil nuts)

 

Directions

Add all ingredients to your smoothie-maker. Blend and enjoy.

 

Pineapple and Melon Smoothie

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Summer is the perfect time of the year to enjoy those healthy tropical fruits that remind us of sun, sand and sea - and general holiday bliss. What better excuse is there to enjoy a delicious pineapple smoothie?  As you enjoy your smoothie, why not close your eyes for a couple of minutes and visualise the warmth of the sun on your body and the gentle lull of ocean waves? 

 

Benefits

The great thing about pineapple, is that although it's sweet to taste, it actually has a low calorie count. It's also high in antioxidants and vitamins. Pineapple also contains the important enzyme, bromelain, which is particularly good at fighting inflammation. So its ideal for those who live with inflammatory pain conditions such as arthritis.

Cantaloupe melon, with its beautiful orange colour, is high in beta-carotene, which is thought to help slow down the process of chronic degenerative diseases on the body and the effects of ageing. It also protects the skin, which is great if medications have left your skin lacking its glow and in need of some TLC.

Galia melon is actually a hybrid of cantaloupe and honeydew. It's high in Vitamin C and dietary fibre. It is high in pectin so its great for the digestive system.

 

Ingredients

  • 1/4 fresh pineapple
  • 1/4 cantaloupe melon
  • 1/4 gaia melon
  • 11/2 tsp pea protein powder
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • t sp grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp good quality honey (optional)

 

Directions

Chop the pineapple, and melons. Add everything to your smoothie maker. Blend and enjoy!

 

A deliciously tasty Kale and Melon Smoothie

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If you're new to green smoothies - and unsure about kale - then this kale and melon smoothie is a great place to start. It's such a perfect combination. The natural sweetness of the melon disguising the kale. Yet you still get that beautiful striking green colour that makes the heart sing.

If you're unsure about eating raw kale, you can steam it for seven minutes before adding it to your smoothie. 

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups of kale, organic
  • 1 1/2  cups of melon
  • 1 1/2 inches of fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp mixed seeds (eg. sesame and sunflower seeds)
  • 1/2 organic apple
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp pea protein
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup of almond milk

Instructions

Add all the ingredients to your smoothie maker. Blend until smooth and enjoy

 

 

An Incredibly Moreish Carrot, Apple and Ginger Smoothie

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A wonderful Summer smoothie that's perfect for breakfast with a vibrant orange colour.  The organic carrot and apple provide sweetness and the pea protein is filling - so you shouldn't need to go snacking before lunchtime with this tasty brekkie inside of you.

A great place to start if you're new to smoothies - and sure to become a Summer favourite.


Benefits

Carrots are a powerful source of beta-carotene. Your body converts this to Vitamin A and this can help give you beautiful, glowing skin. The alkaline nature of carrots also helps purify the blood. 

Apples are high in antioxidants and flavinoids. Apples are high in Vitamin C which can help the body fight off infections and boost the immune system. Because they are rich in fibre, apples can also aid the digestion by releasing gastric juices that support the efficient absorbtion of nutrients.

Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory that can aid digestion. It can also help menstrual cramps, nausea, arthritis and muscle soreness.

Pea protein can aid weight loss. It can reduce the level of ghrelin your stomach - the hormone your stomach releases to tell your brain its time to eat.

If you're new to smoothies this is a great one to start with.

Ingredients

  • 1 large organic carrot, chopped
  • 1 organic red apple, chopped (I used Gala)
  • 100ml almond milk
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon good quality honey
  • 1 scoop pea protein

Directions

Add all the ingredients to your smoothie-maker. Blend until smooth.

Enjoy!

 

10 Must-Have Kitchen Gadgets that Can Make Life Easier if you have Chronic Pain

Do you love cooking - but find it such a challenge you're hardly able to prepare a meal at all? Are you relying far too heavily on ready-meals, and concerned about the ... that you're putting in your body?

I get it! When you're in constant pain, the last thing you might have energy to do is cook a meal. There have been times when I lived on ready meals for months.

It was expensive, it definitely wasn't healthy and it didn't always taste so great either. 

But if you love to cook, having the right kitchen gadgets can make all the difference. Sure - there still might be days you have to rely on a freezer meal or takeaway, but here are ten kitchen gadgets that might make getting in the kitchen a little easier for you.

 

1. Slow cooker

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I love my slow cooker! It's a must-have for minimal, no-fuss healthy cooking.

What makes it so perfect? You don't need much preparation, and there's only one pot to wash up at the end. Just throw your veggies and/or meat in the pot. Switch it on, and let your slow cooker get to work. Because of the timer, there's no need to really keep an eye on it either. You can place all your items in it in the morning, and have a delicious casserole ready to eat in the evening.

I wouldn't be without it.

 

2. hot water dispenser

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This is one of the most valuable aids I have in my kitchen.

At times it can be difficult and, indeed, dangerous to handle a full kettle of boiling water. With a water dispenser, I can press the button and make just one cup of tea or coffee. A real life-saver.

 

3. Smoothie Maker/Ninja Smoothie Maker & Food Processor

I ummed and aahed for ages before I bought my Ninja smoothie maker. I'd had food processors in the past, but they always seemed such a hassle to take apart and wash afterward that I hardly used them.

Enter the Ninja! It has literally transformed my life.

Firstly, it's easy to make a simple and healthy breakfast in the morning - whether it's a green smoothie or healthy oatmeal pancakes.  A perfect way to get healthy nutrients when you don't have time or energy to make a proper cooked breakfast.

It's also fantastic for whizzing up tomato sauces for pasta or blending homemade soups. And there are numerous cookbooks out there with straightforward recipes, telling you how to get the most from your Nutri.

And for me - here's the clincher. There are no small parts to get damaged or broken, and it's easy to wash up afterward. I use my smoothie maker at least five mornings a week for the ultimate .

I've had the basic Ninja smoothie maker for a couple of years - and I love it. Recently, though I've upgraded to this little beauty as it comes with the addition of a small food processor.

 

 

4. Measuring Cups

If you enjoy baking, using a set of measuring cups will make it so much easier than the traditional British method of weighing ingredients on scales with grams/ pounds and ounces.

This is the exact set that I use. It has 8 sizes - from 1 cup all the way down to 1/4 cup. It also has traditional spoon measurements of tablespoon, teaspoon and dessert spoon. I find this easier than having to weigh flour or sugar in a scale. 

I recommended it to a friend the other day, and she says it got her baking again. 

 

4. Ergonomic Knife

An ergonomic knife is one of the handiest little tools you can have in your kitchen. The angle of the knife makes it so much easier to slice through things like onions and other veggies that might previously have given you difficulty. 

 

5. Instant Pot

Similar to a slow cooker, but it cooks meals in a fraction of the time - so if you're not organised enough to place your ingredients in the slow cooker in the morning, this is an excellent alternative.

If you only need to cook in smaller quantities, a 3-litre Pressure King Pro might be more suitable for your needs.

 

6. Porcelain Mug

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On those days when a normal cup might just be too weighty, nothing beats the beauty and elegance of a porcelain mug. 

 

7. Mini Oven

I love this mini-oven by Andrew James.

First of all it looks stylish - I've had so many compliments on it. It doesn't burn food - and it also has a grill too. And it has both a fan and normal oven. It cooks chicken, vegetables and anything else beautifully.

Best of all, it has a timer. So if brain fog means that you forget to go and check it later, at least it will switch itself off. And because it's more compact than a regular oven, food cooks a little more quickly too, saving abit on fuel. One of my best buys!

 

8. Melamine Dinner Set

There are days when my arms and wrists are in so much pain, that a cup might as well be a lead weight. Those are the times when I reach for my melamine dinner set. They look fantastic, and are better for the environment than paper plates as they create less waste.

I have mine in a pretty, cheerful pattern that's bound to cheer me up. And if you have a complete set then you don't have to feel the odd one out when you're set dinner to a family or friend round for dinner.  They're not microwave safe, but it's perfectly fine to serve hot food on them.

 

9. Electric Jar Opener

 
 
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