The war against the baddies begins by having the goodies abundantly available so I’ve compiled a shopping list. You will probably have some of it already.
You can swap things out (not like crisps in place of apples or wine in place of water though), you can religiously follow or just use what I write and eat as a guide. Up to you.
The main thing to remember is if you want to lose weight you need to change something.
If you move more (a lot more) and eat less AND/OR differently consistently you will lose weight, look better, feel better and depending how far you choose to go really make some massive changes to your health.
So here is a useful shopping list. A list of things that you can use for an instant snack, to throw together something quickly to eat, or to take your time to make a meal.
We need to have something easy and fast when we are hungry before we are tempted by fat, salt and sugar laden snacks and quick bites – stodge by any other name!
Packet of sea weed – Nori sheets work best.
The main meal recipes I suggest for the next few days are;
Im loving the Nike Training app (OK loving it is reaching – I love it AFTER I have done it!!) also the ‘7 min WC’ app – I can never find an excuse not to find 7 minutes for that one 🙂
For a few weeks I am going to be posting every few days to say what we have, and are, going to eat with tips and life style adjustments plus recipes.
The reason, we need it and I have so many people who ask me for help, tips and have the same problems and needs we do. You are welcome to take part. Let me know how it goes, what you need and any comments (please be nice?).
To lose about 4 KG each, gain energy, sleep more deeply, increase immune system, reduce inflammation (aches, pains and stiffness), increase mental clarity and reduce stress.
Most recipes will be using very precise measures such as ‘some’, ‘lots’, ‘a handful’, ‘glug’ – if its crucial I’ll say but this way of eating really does mean you aren’t restricted, also as we have cut out wine, stodge and sugars for a lot of the week (what, didn’t I say?…), and everything we are eating is actually GOOD for us, we can be so much more generous with ourselves.
FIRST things first!
Drag yourself out of bed and stretch, really, really stretch, it should feel good. If you shower or bathe in the morning, its a great start to finish with a cold blast of water, you can scream, thats OK! You will feel great afterwards (really!!).
Massage your head and face as you wash, really roll those knuckles into your cheeks and knead your scalp and neck with finger tips. As you dry rub vigorously ( you are helping break down toxins AND toning your arms ;-), massage your preferred oil or body cream in (more toxin breakdown, firming and toning going on), clean your teeth plie-ing as you do (men too, we all need a nice firm bum!) So all that should have taken maximum of 15 minutes…
I pint warm water with (if you have it – if you don’t get some for tomorrow!) a whole lemon squeezed into it. Optional optimisation: add a tablespoon or two of Aloe (build up to it a teaspoonful a day!). We will have this every day so be prepared. Make it before shower or whilst bath is running so its really absorbing and out of your tum before you have breakfast.
Whilst waiting for the kettle to heat do some body rolls, they will stretch and reposition your back, tighten tum, bum and legs and simply feel good. – Stand upright, stack your spine so its comfortably straight. Lift chin, stick bum out, hands on thighs, push bum back lowering chest towards knees, keep chin right up, slide hands down thighs. When arms are bent pull in tummy, tuck bum under, hunch your back so that it curves the other way (like a cat), shoulders rounded, chin on chest and roll up slowly stacking the spine vertebra on top of vertebra. At the top do it again. If that doesn’t work tell me, Ill get one of the kids to do a little video and post it!
Breakfast – Me: Live yogurt, honey (Im using raw) 1tbsp ground flax, 1tbsp chia seeds, heaped tsp pollen, fruit – Im using banana and some mixed red fruit I’m defrosting over night. Rooibos tea (no milk or sugar it doesn’t need it).
Robin: Meusli (no added sugar), chia and flax, fruit as above with fresh squeezed orange juice on it.
Options – add or replace seeds with oats or meusli (without added sugar). Try to have the flax and/or chia its amazingly good for you for digestion and highly nutritionally beneficial but flax MUST be ground!!
If you don’t want dairy have the seeds, fruit, oats with coconut water/orange squeezed over/nut, rice or oat milk.
Snack if needed; small handful of raw almonds OR piece of fruit OR miso with sea weed in OR 2-3 of dates, prune or dried apricots
Lunch Green smoothy. For these I use a Vitamix which is a really strong blender – if you don’t have a strong blender I suggest blending all the soft things and eating the apple, cellery and even the greens but CHEW then well, you need to grind those leaves to get all the nutrients out of them! : Bananas, apple, celery ( 2-3 sticks), handful (FULL) green leaves and half an avocado OR a spoonful of coconut oil OR flax oil – for at work I like the mixed bag of watercress, rocket and spinach, ready washed). Drink as much as you want, put some in a glass bottle or flask for later if you can’t drink all at once – if you find you are hungry mid afternoon add another banana or two tomorrow (yep, green smoothies rock every day!
Snack as above
Dinner (Its day one so we are all motivated and being really, really good) – Spicy cabbage and cashews:
(just before we start I have to say this is when we always want a glass of wine for all those important reasons such as its been a stressful day, its been a good day, something really bad happened, something really good happened, its erm… Monday (fill in as appropriate) basically habit, boredom or the feeling that if we can’t we are deprived – I happen to be a miss-matcher, which results in, if I can’t have something I want it even more, so we have found a big glass of ice cold water, sparkly is best, mixed with some ginger juice and agave or, for ease and deliciousness, Bottle Green Ginger and Lemon grass cordial cuts through that moment perfectly 🙂
Spicy cabbage and cashews
Chop finely half a red cabbage and half a white cabbage ( obviously this depends on the size, mine are organic and fairly small), put in a bowl.
Grate a carrot or two over the top.
Add 1/4 finely sliced red onion (or any, spring onions are good).
Grate or cube an apple, throw it in.
Chop or slice a red pepper and add.
Throw in a handful of raw (or at least natural) cashews.
Mix up in a cup some nut butter (I like using cashew for this) with some chopped chilli (or powdered, or chilli oil, use what you have and adapt to your taste), some flax and/or olive or sesame oil (not toasted), a squeezed orange and a crushed clove are garlic (optional) add some sea salt ( pink Himalayan or Celtic sea salt) and pepper. Pour over the top and mix madly.
Chop up half a bunch of fresh coriander ( again depends on size of bunch and how much you like it!) and sprinkle liberally on top, mix again et voilà! Its cold but even on a cold night the chilli warms it and you up.
Recipe inspired by Markus Rothkranz.
Eat to your hearts desire, chew well, there will probably be some for lunch tomorrow (or dinner tomorrow night if its easier, this is all meant to be easy and made to fit your life style).
Need something sweet? Blend a banana, pinch of vanilla, some live yogurt (cows, goats, raw coconut, whatever), 1/8-1/4 tsp stevia or some honey – its like banana and custard. OR a couple of cubes of dark chocolate. I’ll do some really good raw puddings another time and post them with a link.
Just before bed a cup of warm water with a couple of TBSP Apple cidre vinegar in warm water and (if you want/have/can) a tsp passion flower powder mixed in.
TIPS FOR LIFE
Ill add to these as we go. I don’t want to over whelm us!
1) Drink green or herbal tea in place of numerous cups of black tea and coffee – if you can’t do without black tea and coffee try to avoid sugar and limit milk and have only in the mornings. Good substitutes are Red bush ( Roibosh/Rooibos), green, herb, hot or cold water with mint/lemon/ginger, dandelion coffee.
Dear Mother Nature (and this should be of interest to energy conservationalists and scientists),
Was brain off sick when you thought up the concept of ‘menopause symptoms’?
In particular the starring roll of hot flushes?
Is there one single useful reason for them?
Night after night of covers on, covers off, covers on, covers off, knackered us, knackered partners, addled brains, baggy eyes and saggy tummies.
I suppose they are very good for sales of Chillows, high tec. airflow mattresses, fans, air con units, spray cans of water – not to mention black cohosh, sage and evening primrose oil. I guess they are a lucrative source of income for divorce lawyers too.
And surely by now, with all those scientists working on energy sourcing and conservation, all those politicians and business people looking into the rising cost of heating, SOMEBODY could come up with a way to at least make us feel its all worthwhile and channel the mega watts produced by millions of efficient female night time heat generators into something useful to keep us warm during the day?
We could be worth a fortune; there is no down time during working hours – if it happens we multi task. We don’t need a designated place or equipment to produce it. No, its any place, any time, just ask your nearest lady of a certain age – yes, that pink one should be able to tell you.
Oh, and we ALL know that getting hot and sweaty results in weight loss, glowing skin, shiny hair, better moods, sharper brain, better concentration and improved mood, stamina and sex life – what did you not understand????
Ach, enough all ready, I’m too tired, can’t concentrate and feeling way too grumpy, another time…
Always look on the bright side of (mid) life dada, dada dada dada 🙂
We are told time and again we need to eat our 5 a day – 5 fruit and vegetables.
We would be better with ten but they started with 5 so we would accept it, and sometimes it feels hard to do – it shouldn’t be.
One smoothie will take you almost there and this one is mostly just from the garden. Heres what I put in…
A pile of lettuce leaves from various types that have now sprouted, they are still useful for smoothies.
Plump purselane that is growing wild (soooo good for you, also delicious in salads!).
Leaves I pinched from the tops of some unsuspecting beetroot.
A hand full of crisp parsley, flat and curly.
A small pile of ripe plumbs warm from the tree.
And last but not least hand fulls of shiny, sweet and juicy blackberries.
I whizzed them up in the Vitamix with a mango that needed using and a windfall apple that didn’t look pretty enough for some to eat.
So about 9 portions between three of us!
An easy smoothy that almost anyone would love and is silky smooth would be bananas, an apple or pear and half a lettuce ( try for organic). When we need more energy/calories, I add in more bananas, some nuts, adapt to your needs.
In health and happiness
Desri xLearn More
Five things to do with an avocado
Life is busy, often frantic and the fastest, easiest and most effective things do not have to come out of a bottle or a packet or cost a fortune.
Avocados are a perfect fruit. I am told we could live on them alone (hey, come on, borrrrring!) so quickly discarding that thought here are 5 top things to do with them, I have so many more but five is your limit for today, don’t want to bore you…
1 As the picture depicts LOVE ‘EM! Just as they are, with a sprinkle of natural mineral salt (especially Fleur de sel – yum), and/or a good squeeze of lemon, or a sprinkle of vinaigrette (the stone hole is a perfect reservoir).
2 Whip them up with a splash of lemon or cider vinegar, some salt and pepper and a handful of herbs to make a dressing for salad, pasta or a dip to dip anything into. Vary the herbs for different flavours.
3 Easy guacamole – mash the avocado, squeeze a lemon over, add chopped onions and tomatoes and fresh ( or frozen) coriander – perfect lunch or snack, starter or apero with wholemeal pitta bread, chopped up veggies or even a spoon!
4 If you open one and its over ripe or gone black don’t throw it away! Mash it up and squidge it through your hair. Wrap in cling film or a shower cap with a towel over the top and leave for 20 minutes or more then shampoo off. Hair and skin love the natural, rich oils.
5 Leading on from above; mash one up and rub over your skin. Exfoliate first then just smear it on. Leave for however long you have then shower it off.
I can not shake the vision of the little boy in India who had his eyes gouged out yesterday.
Atrocities and tragedies are happening everywhere, all the time, we see so much of it we become almost immune, it bounces off, it didn’t happen to us.
This one really hit me full on. The horror, the pain, the fact it can never be undone. The suffering, the shock, the realisation. Each fragmented part of this shocking story in slow motion is lodged in my brain, the pit of my stomach and behind my eyes.
I have pledged to help children in whatever way I can.
It is my private – and shared – vision and venture, my mission to do what I can. When I read this story it felt that my mission is so futile, such a tiny drop, will it help at all, will it matter?
And today the stories about the dead children in Syria with no families left to identify them. And how many children are dreading going back to school today because they are bullied or abused. Or relieved to be going because those things happen at home. On and on.
So, as with most mountains, we have to start by taking one step.
We can’t reach the top without having taken that first step and that first step counts just as much as the last one that takes us onto the summit.
We have to remember that, give it the importance it deserves, otherwise… we would just give up and we CAN NOT do that.
I wrote a critical post the other day, which I removed after a long chat with someone who made me think again.
I’ve actually had some really good feedback from it too, it struck a cord with many people but I want to qualify something.
One comment I made was this – ”
Imagine a fairy aura with all its shades of pinks, lilacs, blues and greens – if that was put under a sterile strip light, how ever modern and effective it was, the hues and shades would be flattened, you would hardly even see the glow.”
The criticism was of people wanting to question what I think and feel about my new business …. the point she made was that they have to do that so they understand me, if they didn’t understand me how could progress happen.
I had become defensive and didn’t see it that way at all, hence the post (very slightly in my defence, it has to be said we have all experienced people not wanting to understand or help and thinking they know best, but when I think about it now the difference was that they probably didn’t ask questions or listen!).
The moment I really GOT what this special and clever friend was saying is when she said, “The people questioning what you are thinking and wanting to do actually questioned because they want to give your fairy the biggest, brightest, prettiest wings ever”.
Now that was talking my language ( she is very good at that) and it really hit home.
Im really glad she took the hour and a half of talking to help me remember that we have so many different languages because we are all motivated and affected by different things, sometimes we have to listen, translate and replay a few times.
Whats that metaphor – don’t tar everyone with the same brush I think?
And round pegs sometimes will squidge nicely into square holes!Learn More
Ok quick recipe for an easy, delicious and nourishing dip – yes and low calories, cuts through cravings for creamy, cheesy and savoury and more I’m sure!
Delicious and nourishing dip recipe, coming up:
- A bag of frozen peas (defrost – not in the micro wave if you can help it please!) blend with half a red onion (oh, yes, any onion if thats what you have) an avocado, a couple of table spoons of nutritional yeast – that’s the cheesy flavour, trust me, plus it is called nutritional for a reason!
- Add a tablespoon of agave syrup – OK, maple, or honey, or even (and this would be a great choice) a couple of apricots or a sweet nectarine or a couple of soaked dates – get the picture, just use your bonce and try to keep it unprocessed, raw, organic & clean!).
- Add a tsp good salt (natural mineral, NOT table salt!) and a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar ( yes, lemon or lime could be subbed there).
- Whizz it all up, add a big handful of fresh coriander r other herbs of you haven’t got it, mints a great one, and yumaloo, you are through!
- Serve with sticks of carrot, celery, cucumber, chunks of cauliflower, broccoli, slices of cabbage, endive leaves or even good old pitta bread ( wholemeal if you please.
Anything you do that increases your intake of fruit and veggies, especially green, is a good thing, especially when it tastes this good!
I would like to have a bit of chat about people who judge – does that mean I am judging them? Maybe, maybe – anyway here goes…
The way we live, the way we eat is often in question– we are what we eat, we hear that all the time.
Actually we are made of what we eat and do and think and say and experience.
That’s obvious isn’t it?
A LOT of people seem to think that their way is the best way and so they preach. I know, I know – if someone asks me about health I tend to go on and on (sorry friends) and give advice freely when asked by anyone (I also charge, its my job). BUT I’m talking about those who insist “100% this” is the only right way or “100% that”, or “80/20% is the perfect way”.
We are all different. Not just in what we need but in what we want, what works with our life even our age and state of health.
Of course we can all change, we could be flexible, change as needed, listen to our bodies and minds. I also believe that for me (the only example to use) 100% anything is not right.
Being a classic miss-matcher if I put a rule on myself (or if anyone else tries to) I usually break it. If I decide on Tuesday we will eat such and such on Friday – there is NO WAY we will be eating that on Friday. Its a bit of a standing joke in our house.
I must just say at this point that I believe eating fried foods, food with all the nutrients boiled out of them, dairy, sugar, white stuff, lots of meat and alcohol as well as not exercising and leading a stressful and/or anger fuelled life (and any combination of that little lot you choose) is going to end in tears – and health problems.
There are other ways to live and eat and some people don’t know them (some choose not to want to and they have that right – though when it effects others they could have the right to mention it!!) hence, when asked, I go on….and on.
Anyway. To state my point of view; I believe that a very high raw plant based diet, higher in veggies than fruit, is the best way for me and most people – if this choice is taken with knowledge and attention to advice. I believe that the more food and drink you take in that nourishes your body the better.
For me eating a plate of stodge, say pasta, is a wasted opportunity to a) enjoy something more delicious ( lets face it, its what you put on it that tastes good) and b) to notch up another “portion” of fantastic nutrients – so in place of the pasta I would probably use spiralised raw courgette for example. The sauce would be a divine blend of veggies, garlic, oils and herbs. If I wanted creamy (love creamy!) it would have nuts and maybe nutritional yeast and lecithin in there – so all the yumminess without guilt – ah, guilt thats another thing (another time).
I believe we need to use supplements, I do and I send them to my kids and check that they take them. I use spirulina, wheatgrass ( fresh when possible, frozen when not and powdered when neither are available), spray Vit. B12 and Vit D.
I take MSM, Maca and a mixed green powder with algea, acai, and allsorts of other great stuff in it sometimes (I swap and change and remember and forget with these).
At the moment I am taking Co-enzime Q 10, 5HTP and magnesium ( spray oil and tablets with B6) and a high dose of Vit C; because I am recovering from extensive stress and burnout.
I use frozen pollen when Im in France and so can get it.
I drink herbs as tea (plus lots of different red and green teas), drink lots of water and do not buy ready meals or anything really that I think is bad. I drink green juices and green smoothies by the pint. Lemons, limes and apple cider vinegar are always to hand.
I eat out sometimes and don’t stress about it, I eat at friends houses and love the food they have prepared with kindness for their guests. I drink wine. I drink a tiny coffee most mornings ( OK I smell it a lot and sip it a little then throw it away having had what I want from it). I practice yoga sometimes, I meditate, I dance around the kitchen a lot, I feel huge love and happiness and, sometimes, have to wrestle myself from the clutches of sadness.
I do the best I can for me and my family and my friends and my clients.
Often and for long periods I only eat a raw plant based diet which includes nuts and seeds, sea veggies and draws upon a lot of experience and knowledge (and relies on my super fast blender, food processor and dehydrater). I am happy with that – I just don’t make it a rule!!
Of course I could and should “do better” in someone’s eyes, on the other hand I’m probably a mad, hippy, health fanatic in someone else’s eyes too!
ONE OF OUR RAW FEASTSLearn More
Well things feel a little quiet around here.
Last week was the Bleus Passions – the Blues festival- at Cognac, just down the road. It was super gooood! We saw Sinead O’Connor who was beautiful and sang like an angel, Beth Hart who was sexy ‘n’ sassy and sang like a rockin’ angel and The Hives who just took control and had everybody (say that word like the Blues Brothers would) eating out of their hands.
Sadly we were right at the front for The Hives (this is a small outdoor venue in a park, so a perfect place, even when it rains and everyone is sharing black plastic sacks to keep dry – which it didn’t this year, hurray) anyway, we were right at the front as we had been for the previous two concerts, and so were a lot of, well, children.
OK so they were maybe 16, and they all started bouncing around and then jumping around, then it got a little manic and they started crowd surfing and hmmmm we moved back a bit. Then it got even more manic and I told Robin I was heading out and we’d meet up later. Good man that he is wouldn’t let me go alone (good excuse huh?) and held my hand and dragged me through the throng to a safe spot, only about 10 metres back but, can you imagine? It was the walk of shame!!!
I felt like someone’s granny (that is the “sadly” bit), till I looked around and there were all the other over 20s (OK, over 30s then) that had previously been at the front.
So, now it’s quiet. Sun’s out. I’m up early because I couldn’t sleep any longer.
Can’t keep calm and quiet for too long so today is the day I start the site for Robin & Desri (RobinandDesri.com) and also ByDesri so that we can start taking bookings for our retreat AND prepare to launch Tatty Tot in a few months time, yee haaaa!
Funny how a day can start out slow and speed up before most people are out of bed isn’t it?
I LOVE having something to go for, but have been more than a little burnt out for a while which was a huge shock to me and it took me a while to understand and accept, and I am over the hump – thank you family and friends who loved me better and love me just the way I am, green juices, meditation, good bands and the ability I have been given to always see the silver lining and find inspiration in the most unexpected places.Learn More