December 17, 2014

Staying Healthy During The Silly Season



It is the time of the year to treat yourself with delicious Christmas food, spend time with your loved ones and celebrate! Celebrations are a wonderful part of life but can be a challenge for those focused on healthy eating. Challenges will lie ahead in the next few weeks with decadent buffets, indulgent desserts and sugary cocktails served at parties.

The most important thing you can do for yourself this silly season is to keep track of what you are eating and to stay active. Monitoring yourself will help to keep the December weight off and start the year off right.

I have three tips to help you to healthy over the few weeks.

    1.    Don't drink at every party!

Christmas time means booze, booze, booze not to mention New Years' Eve and summer get togethers. Use some restraint here to decide what parties you want to let loose at - and abstain (or at least limit) from alcohol at others. Try a wine spritzer, which is half sparkling water and half wine or stick to vodka and sodas. Also have a glass of water between every drink to stay hydrated. Avoid refills before you have finished your drink so you can monitor your intake.

   2.    Stay active! 

Have a swim, a run on the beach and even train on Christmas Day! Wake up and have a beautiful walk or jump in the pool to get your body moving. Any movement will do. Dance around with your friends, do lunges up the stairs or do some burpees when you wake up. Still try to stick to a work out routine but when that schedule gets interrupted you can always improvise. Great workout routines are on you tube to try, including HIIT cardio programs, yoga follow alongs and pilates routines.

   3.   Journaling 

Keeping a food diary or journal can help and keep on track of your food and exercise. It is a time to treat yourself but not at every meal time so choose where you want to lash out and stay healthy at other times. Really choose those foods you most enjoy rather than scoffing down lollies, chocolate and greasy canap├ęs without thought. Those calories quickly add up and can derail your training program. If you plan ahead you will be better equipped to make healthy choices. Look over the past few days of your eating diary and see what worked and where you faltered. This will help you make improvements and stay on top over the holidays.


December 04, 2014

Gluten-free Low Sugar Peach, Cranberry and Coconut Cake


Spiced poached fruits, red jewelled cranberries and buttery fragrant coconut all represent the flavours of Christmas and the festive December month. My cake is made with these festive favourites combined with almonds, quinoa and eggs to make a decadent but healthy sweet treat. The eggs make this cake super moist and golden with a richness that works for the cake to be served alone or warmed with custard for an after-dinner pudding. Making the whole cake in a blender creates minimal mess and apart from the baking time of 45 minutes, it really takes little effort to make.

Gluten-free Low Sugar Peach, Cranberry and Coconut Cake

Ingredients:
  • 200 grams of almond meal and quinoa mix 
  • 5 organic eggs
  • 450 grams of tinned peaches
  • 1 cup of Natvia
  • 1 teaspoon of gluten-free baking powder
  • 1/2 cup of cranberries
  • 1/2 cup of shredded coconut

Method:
  1. Use a blender to puree the eggs and sugar until creamy.
  2. Add the peaches without liquid.
  3. Mix in the almond meal and baking powder until combined but don't over mix.
  4. Stir in the cranberries and coconut.
  5. Pour into a lined baking tin or generously cover the tin with coconut oil.
  6. Sprinkle over some shredded coconut.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes on a moderate heat. Check the cake is set by inserting a skewer into the middle. If it comes out clean you will know it's baked through. 
  8. Let cool in the pan.