healthandselina

just trying to make a healthier world, one person at a time

Clean Carrot Cake

Sugar free, Dairy free and grain free this cake is healthy, high in protein and delicious!

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium carrots
  • ½ an orange peeled + the zest
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 egg whites (I used from a carton)
  • ¼ cup sugar free maple syrup
  • ½ cup of any oil I used half coconut oil half extra virgin olive oil
  • Cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg (as desired . I love cinnamon )
  • 1stp Bi-carb soda
  • 1tsp Baking powder
  • ¾ cup chopped walnuts

Method:

  1. Pre heat over to 180C, lightly grease and line a cake tin with baking paper (I used a loaf tin)
  2. Place carrots, orange, all eggs, sugar free maple and oils into a blender or food processor and blend until well combined.
  3. Mix all dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl (sifting optional I always find the almond meal breaks apart after a brief stir)
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix until well combined and moderately runny (you may need to add more liquid either extra egg whites or oil)
  5. Fold in walnuts (you may choose to add sultanas here as well if you like)
  6. Pour mixture into prepared tin and place into oven for 50 – 60 minutes depending on your over. Top will be slightly brown but a skewer may only JUST come out clean this is a very moist cake.
  7. Allow to cool in tin for at least 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack

Notes:

I didn’t peel my carrots I just washed them and chopped the ends off and put them straight in my blender.

I don’t like sultanas myself AND they do contain sugar but it’s up to you if you like to add them.
I always have sugar free maple syrup in my pantry but if you don’t normal maple or honey would both work as well.

You can ice this cake if you like I did but probably wont next time it is sweet and moist and doesn’t need it.

But I used about a cup of thick natural yoghurt, the zest from half the orange and about 3/4cup of artificial sweetener. Mixed together and left in the fridge for an hour or so whilst the cake cooked. Make sure cake is completely cool before icing.

No picture because i ate it all too quickly!!

Light Cream cheese or cottage cheese would work as a substitute for yoghurt and make a thicker creamier icing.

You can ice this cake if you like I did but probably wont next time it is sweet and moist and doesn’t need it.

But I used about a cup of thick natural yoghurt, the zest from half the orange and about 3/4cup of artificial sweetener. Mixed together and left in the fridge for an hour or so whilst the cake cooked. Make sure cake is completely cool before icing.

Light Cream cheese or cottage cheese would work as a substitute for yoghurt and make a thicker creamier icing.

I’m not fat shaming…

If you are overweight, you are at an increased risk of heart disease, heart attack, diabetes, respiratory disease, hypertension and high blood pressure as well as increased risk of arthritis, joint pain and body aches because you are carrying more weight than your body was meant to handle.

If you think it is fat shaming for me to say these things, and to hear them out loud hurts your feelings it may be time to wake up and smell a little less bacon!

I am not going to make fun of you if I see you waddling along the street as you struggle to push your child’s pram, I am not going to point and laugh if I hear you wheezing as you walk around the shopping centre, I will not make snide remarks at you if you take up more than you share of space in a cinema chair.

But if you think that my telling you that you are putting unnecessary pressure on the health care system is wrong, that pretty much every disease risks can be decreased by being in a healthy weight range is “fat shaming” then you are about to hear some things that will make you extremely depressed!

Unfortunately for you they are thing you need to hear. I am not saying that skinny people can’t be unhealthy too; I am not addressing that here at all. I am simply saying if you are overweight you ARE at more chance of dying of a preventable disease and at a much younger age than someone in a healthy weight range. And if you think that you are fat but still healthy, if you say you go to gym and eat well but are still overweight I’m sorry but despite your best efforts you are STILL at a higher risk of all of the above mentioned diseases.

If you are overweight it is time to face the facts and make a change.

No, people shouldn’t make fun of you for your size, they should HELP you, any way they can. You are a risk to yourself, to our healthcare system and more than anything your families. They need you, they want you here for as long as possible and it is so so easy to do something about it.

It is time to stop being “big and beautiful” or “large and proud”. It is time to stop defending yourself against name calling or “fat shaming” and realise that its time to do something about it! Not because of the name calling.. bceause of your health!

Put down the fork, spoon, chips… Get out there be active any way you can and change your life for the better.

No one of any weight, age, gender, race should be discriminated against or shamed for how they look. But regardless of any external factors if you are unwell and you are told there are things you can do to help you get better… You should do them!

Your illness is your weight… now stop whinging and do something about it!

Chick Pea Choc Chip Cookies

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Look at these DELICIOUS choc-chip cookies!

Would you believe they are added sugar FREE!!??

I am currently studying Nutrition and your Health online through Wageningen University. Yesterday I found out that despite popular belief that artificial sweeteners are detrimental to your health and may promote diseases such as cancer this information is actually incorrect and formed from in extensive and inconclusive studies done on rats and there has been no linking data saying that this is true for humans.

So in a western culture still ever fighting the obesity epidemic, I am all for the use of sugar substitutes and whilst stevia is optimally the best option, if you are on a budget any other non-heat sensitive sweetener is fine as well when consumed in moderation. (Like all other things in our diet)

On that note if you are looking for a ‘treat’ to go with your morning or afternoon tea/coffee… this is it!

Chick Pea Choc Chip Cookies

Ingredients

1 tin of chick peas (rinsed and drained)
1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter
1 egg
1 small ripe banana
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbsp. sugar free maple syrup (or to taste)
3 sachets of stevia
cinnamon as desired

1/3 cup walnuts
1 sugar free chocolate bar chopped (more if desired)

Directions
preheat oven to 180
line a tray with baking paper

Put the top ingredients in a blender, blend till well combined

Mix in walnuts and chocolate by hand

Use a spoon and dollop mixture on to the tray about 4-5cm apart (mixture is quite moist)

Put in oven and cook for approx. 13 minutes (more or less depending on over)

Allow to cool and demolish.

I ate half my batch in one go… and still didn’t need to feel guilty with all those natural, healthy, sugar free ingredients!

4 healthy ways to lose weight

  1. Don’t allow yourself to over eat just because you have exercised.
    Studies have shown that people that only exercise for 30 minutes a day were able to lose more weight than those people working out for an hour or more. Now the longer the workout the more calories burnt the more weight lost, right?? Well people that exercised for long periods of time tend to allow themselves to over indulge because they feel they have earned it. Something to keep in mind next time you think you have earned that extra serve at dinner time or a treat every night, coming to the gym doesn’t mean a free pass at the dinner table.
  2. Don’t have an all or nothing approach.
    You don’t need to go all out when it comes to diet, Small maintainable changes to your diet are going to be more likely to stick long term and yield greater results. Step away from the meal replacement shakes and green smoothie detoxes. Ask a trainer or professional to have a look at your current diet and they will be able to give you a few simple changes that you can make, and STICK to!
  3. Snacks aren’t a must!
    For so long we have preached that small meals 5 – 6 times a day increase your metabolic rate and help you burn more calories. However it turns out you don’t need to push yourself to eat that way if that doesn’t feel normal to you. As long as you remain consistent with the way you eat, your body will know what’s up. So whether you snack 6 times a day or eat 3 slightly larger meals it doesn’t really matter as long as it’s always the same and at similar times of the day. Your body knows how you work and everyone is different. Also studies have shown that people that snack in the morning between breakfast and lunch were less likely to lose weight as there is usually only 4 hours between breakfast and lunch and a snack in that time is really quite unnecessary, unless you’re an early riser and there is a longer gap between your first and second meals.
  4. Have realistic goals
    It’s good to have someone that is an inspiration to you. But studies have shown that putting up photos of wafer thin models and actresses can become more disappointing than motivating as it’s quite unrealistic that you will ever get to that size without a personal trainer, rigorous diet and 110% dedication. Eventually when looking at the pictures women especially become upset because they still feel so far away from their goal. Small attainable goals are more motivating long term.

The Body Builder Trend

Fast food restaurants started popping up around Australia in the early 1970s. Up until then most families were cooking every meal from scratch and before 1940 planting, growing and cropping it themselves. That’s a lot of manual labour for a meal, in comparison to the drive through, stay seated, don’t even have to get out of your car options that we have readily available to us on every corner today.

Statistics show that in 1983 only around 10% of Australians were overweight. In a time where there were still only a few fast food restaurants popping up including pizza, fish and chips and McDonalds. These highly processed foods were a cost effective novelty and welcome change to preparing a home cooked meal. However the nutritional content of this food was widely unknown and the long term effects of eating a highly processed low nutritional diet was unexplored. Novelty turned into routine as families would go back week after week for their take away meal, and routine turned into laziness as parents working long hours found it easier and more cost effective to feed their family from a box than to come home from work and prepare a proper meal. Then from here we have addiction. McDonald’s buns and many cereal products have HUGE amounts of sugar in them making them highly addictive. Making you want more and more empty calories being put into your body and not filling you up at all. After years of decreased manual labour and increased processed fast foods we now know the effects of eating this way.

Obesity Australia published that before 1990 less than 30% of Australians were overweight. These numbers almost doubled by 2005 when it was announced that there was an obesity epidemic in Australia and most western countries. Over 65% of Australians were overweight and over 25% were obese.

However, trends have changed. In the last 5 years there has actually been a small decrease in the number of overweight Australians. Gen Y babies have seen their baby boomer parents become overweight and not even know why. We grew up eating roll ups and coco pops and we have realised that something has to change. There is an issue and we are gaining the knowledge to fix it. Whilst there is still a long way to go on the obesity epidemic and a lot of Gen X parents are still struggling with the change away from a fast and processed diet we have the beginning of a better future.

These days it’s fashionable to be a member at a gym, drink green smoothies and herbal teas, own some skins and look after your body. However in all of our learning of what is good for us, every second 20 something year old thinks they are an expert, becoming a Personal Trainer or Nutritionist or… competing in body building competitions. It’s one thing to look after your body and your health and regular exercise is not only recommended by the government to help save on the cost of obesity which was In 2008, was estimated at AUD$8.3 billion with an additional AUD$49.9 billion in the form of lost wellbeing, bringing the combined cost of obesity to AUD$58.2 billion but also vital to your heart, lung and bone health.

But going to extremes as to cut out whole food groups and limit fluid intake to look good in a tiny bikini and high heels in front of judges comparing yourself to other men and women, is that really what HEALTH is? Mental or physical?

Magazines and the internet are filled with pictures of ‘fit’ men and women and whether they are there promoting some ridiculous new protein shake or diet pill or they want you to come down and try out their Bootcamp class, they are representing an unrealistic idea of what a man or women’s body should look like. Because it takes a LOT of hard work and dedication to get a 6 pack or 57cm biceps and often these people don’t look like that 95% of the time. They slim down for photo shoots and competitions and then look like regular people the rest of the time. Or the photos are edited to make them look slimmer or bigger or firmer or reduce cellulite.

What does this do for young men and women’s body image issues which are already a huge leading cause of eating disorders in young Australians’?

We should be promoting health and fitness as a way of life so that you can stay fit, healthy and active your entire life. NOT as a way to look good.

Being a healthy weight means less cause of disease, less stress on the tax payer, more energy in your day to day life increasing quality of life and it also means that as you get older you will be fit and able to continue working and to play with your children and your grandchildren. This is the idea that should be covering magazines and spreading over the internet. Not images of people wearing too much fake tan standing on a stage striking silly poses. It is mentally unhealthy to need to compare your physical image to others around you. No two bodies are made the same, there is no ‘perfect’ when it comes to the human body. Be healthy, be the best YOU, you can be and you will be beautiful. Inside to out.

Selina xx

Am i in a healthy weight range?

Am I in a healthy weight range?

In Australia 28.6% of the female population are overweight or obese with the chance increasing as you get older. This equates to almost 1 in every 4 Australians being outside the recommended weight range for their age and height. And whilst trends do seem to be changing and the dramatic rise in overweight Australians seems to have slowed. It is not enough to compare yourself to those around you. It is our attitudes towards weight that is the real worry. Only 1 in 3 obese people see an issue with their weight and only 30% of the obese people in the country even realised they are obese. The first step to fixing a problem is recognising it.
Below is the BMI chart used to indicate whether you are in a healthy weight range.

bmi chart

The chart is not 100% accurate as it does not account for muscle mass. The BMI chart puts most elite athletes in the overweight range and most rugby players in the obese range, even though they would have very low body fat percentages and very active and healthy lifestyles. However for the average adult this chart is a good indicator.
You can also check your waist circumference. For adult females over 80cm increases your health risks and over 88cms greatly increases your health risks.

Losing weight becomes more and more difficult every year after you turn 30 as your metabolism (the natural rate at which your body metabolises energy at rest) slows down.
So it is increasingly important to get yourself to a healthy weight and keep yourself there through healthy eating and regular exercise. National Australian guidelines recommend 30 minutes of moderate exercise ALL or most days of the week plus and extra 30 minutes of vigorous activity on 2 – 3 days of the week. Just to maintain regular health and muscular function.

Nutrition Australia has recently released a new healthy eating pyramid (about time) Gone are the days of high grain diets with bread, grains and cereals at every meal. Time to start eating more natural unprocessed foods, Increasing fruit and veg and decreasing highly processed sugary foods. Here is a copy of the new pyramid.

healthy eating yramin

Eat well, exercise often, improve your health and change your life for the better 🙂

Breakfast or sugar fix??

A recent study by the Obesity Policy Coalition has shown that many of our favourite breakfast cereals are around ONE-THIRD SUGAR! That means that for every three spoonfuls, one is actually just sugar. Frightening stuff.

If you are a real cereal lover and just cant say no to a crunchy bowl of flakes and milk in the morning make sure you check the nutritional info on the box so you know what your putting in your body and keep your portion size down if need be. Make sure you check both the Nutritonal info AND the ingredients remember they are listed in order of % so if sugar is at the top theres more of that than anything else. So what you read there may just be enough to scare you off.
However the best way to make sure your not putting any added nasties in your body is to make your own breakfast from scratch. Rolled oats, mized nuts & seeds with natural yoghurt and fresh fruit. Healthy, Natural and delicious.
Here are some more great ideas… http://issuu.com/naturalsweete…/…/sugar_free_brekkie_recipes

Personal Training

For anyone that lives nearby and might be interested in getting in shape here is the link to my website

http://selinad5.wix.com/websiteselina

The Sugar Industry

Living in Australia we are well aware of the effects of extended sun exposure we are constantly reminded to “slip, slop, slap” and everyone makes a huge deal about the detrimental effects of sun damage. Apparently the situation is SO bad that solariums or sunbed tanning has no become illegal through most parts of Australia. However melanoma is only accountable for 2000 deaths in Australia every year, that’s around 6 people a day and whilst some people may say that that is 6 too many when you compare the statistics to the 14 Aussies that die each day from alcohol related deaths and the 430 people that are hospitalised for the same thing and alcohol is still legal it makes you wonder who the government are really looking after. The Government place taxes on all alcohol sales so whilst more than double the amount of people are dying from alcohol consumption than sun damage it seems to be okay because someone is profiting from it.

Let’s look at another example. Illegal drugs cause 15 deaths a day! Huge right you can see why they are illegal BUT the deaths caused by tobacco each day are 40 people!!! Why are cigarettes still on the market? Who makes these calls? Who decides that one of the most detrimental things to our society is okay because you can place a tax on it and the Government can make money from it? Why isn’t anyone addressing these issues?

Here is the real quencher the one sole perpetrator for the highest cause of deaths in Australia every single year… Obesity. 55 Australians die every day from illnesses caused by obesity. That’s 1 person every 26 minutes dying from a preventable disease. Coronary heart disease, cardiovascular disease or heart attack. And yet you can walk into a supermarket or servo at any age and buy a drink that may contain 50grams of sugar or more!
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day are (7): Men: 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons). Women: 100 calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons).
So this one beverage has already put you over that recommendation.

Allowing some slack for the fact that most people know that sweet carbonated drinks are very high in added sugar and if you are going to have one it is hopefully usually a treat. What I really want to focus on is the fact that seemingly healthy foods like bread and cereal that most people consume every single day that may even have the heart foundation tick of approval contains added sugar you probably had no idea was there.
Even Muesli is deceiving, rolled oats…great! Nuts and seeds, awesome! Stacks of dried fruit… NO GOOD! The main ingredient in dried fruit other than the fruit itself is SUGAR! And once a fruit has been dried out its already lost most of its nutritional goodness anyway, so you might as well have added sugar to your muesli!

Most people don’t know these things, not everyone has the avid interest in nutrition that I do. In a world where obesity is the number one cause of death in most western countries why aren’t we looking at what the cause is, why aren’t we doing more about this quite easily preventable disease why aren’t we changing our ways… Because someone is making money off it.

The food production industry is making huge amounts of money from killing people!
Sugar makes food taste better, and if food tastes good you’re going to buy more of it. So ill add sugar to my product.
And I might even label it “low fat” or “no fat” and you will think it’s healthy because seeing the word fat reminds you of being fat. But unfortunately just because a product has no fat doesn’t mean that it won’t make you fat!
Sugar is a great source of fast acting energy but if you don’t use up all the sugar you eat in a day doing a lot of exercise at the end of the day it will still turn in too fat in your body and stay there as stored fat.
Actual fat in foods like dairy, butter, eggs and nuts isn’t that bad because it fills you up, you can’t eat a lot of it. Unlike sugar that you could probably eat endlessly without noticing.

If you are overweight, obese or getting there. I do not blame you! The obesity epidemic is growing and growing with no signs of slowing down. The amount of knowledge you need to have to eat well these days is ridiculous. You shouldn’t need a Diploma of nutrition just to make sure you don’t end up overweight. If a product says it’s healthy, IT SHOULD BE!
In life if you lie, that makes you a bad person, but in the marketing industry apparently it just makes you a good business operator.

Okay so big ruthless, heartless food production companies making money don’t care about you. It’s a cruel world. There’s people out there starving and there’s companies making money off making people fat. I personally could never harm another human for my own personal gain; the world is a horrible place.
But SURELY our government should be doing something?! If you can put a tax on Tobacco and alcohol, if you can ban solariums why can’t you do something about the number 1 leading cause of death in the country? What are you doing for our people?
So what do I propose? Put a law in place that limits the amount of added sugar a company can put in a product per 100g. If you knew that all foods that you could buy would fall into a healthy sugar range it would take the guess work out of shopping and trying to eat healthy it would vastly reduce the amount of calories the average Australian consumes daily therefore lowering opportunity to gain weight daily and lowering rick of preventable diseases.

Information and education on the cause and effect of obesity is far too low, More Australians need more knowledge on the number one threat to their health.

The Government need to be doing more not just to educate their people but to SAVE them. To me the answer is simple; there should be no question as to the action that needs to happen to save thousands of Australian lives.

Now this isn’t saying that eating less and doing more exercise wouldn’t be a huge help as well and that the whole fault of obesity falls into the manufacturers and the Governments hands but it would seem they have done NOTHING to help fix a problem that would be quite easily helped and effects so many.

If you can act against drugs, if you can act against cancer… why can’t you act against sugar!? 

 There will be so much more to come on this topic as i attempt to change the world and make it a healthier place

Sugar, the real killer

Outside of the fact that sugar triggers your liver to store fat on your organs, primes your body for diabetes, puts unnecessary stress on your heart, causes tense blood vessels from excess insulin in the bloodstream, increases bad cholesterol levels, leads to type 3 diabetes, decreases energy levels, makes you feel hungrier than you are, lowers dopamine released in the body causing you to be less happy and also decreases the components that keep your skin from getting thin and saggy it is also highly addictive, almost as bad as some street drugs and even works in the same way in that you need more and more to get your fix.

Some of this may be new information to you, some of it may not. There are a few things I want to make really clear for everyone. Added sugar, glucose, fructose and syrups are in more foods than you think. The recommended daily amount of sugar is 5 teaspoons for women (20 grams); 9 teaspoons for men (36 grams); and 3 teaspoons (12 grams) for children. Keeping that in mind…A simple single slice of whole wheat bread can contain up to 2 teaspoons of added sugars! If you eat toast for breakfast and sandwich at lunch that’s 6 – 8 teaspoons and a woman would already be over her daily intake and that’s without adding any extra sugar to the diet at all!

Added sugar is found in most condiments and pretty much anything you can buy in a jar as well as most ‘diet’ or low fat products. Fat which we for so long have looked at as the culprit for weight gain is now being redeemed. Good, natural fats like butter, cheese and yoghurt contain low sugar and usually quite lot of protein so they fill you up and keep you full longer as well as causing slow release energy and not spiking insulin levels.

The best way to avoid added sugar is to shop the outside isles of your supermarket fresh fruit and veg, lean meat, full fat dairy, nuts and seeds. If something has been packaged to store well and stay fresh for a long time you can bet it has added sugar. Try and buy products that are in there natural state or close to. Rolled oats over processed cereals, freshly roasted potatoes over frozen chips, fresh fruit over dried. Try making your own muesli as most pre-packaged mueslis are high in added sugar from all the dried fruit. Experiment with zucchini pasta and cauliflower rice, have quinoa with your salad at lunch instead of bread. Eating naturally and ‘clean’ might be hard at first take it step by step and remember if you shouldn’t be eating it neither should your kids. Added sugar ruins proper brain function in young children and can lead to causing life changing diseases at a young age.

The fact of the matter is 3 in every 5 Australians are overweight or obese and obesity has become the single biggest health threat to public health in Australia with obesity now overcoming smoking as the leading cause of premature death and illness in Australia. So don’t compare yourself to other people! Just because you are only overweight and not obese like 20% of the population does not make you healthier or better off! Only 30 – 40% of Australian adults fall into a healthy weight range, so try to focus on YOU and YOUR eating habits. Cutting out sugar is really hard as it is addictive however it may be the best thing you ever do for your health and wellbeing and after 7 – 10 days the cravings will subside and you will practically forget what you’re missing.

In summary:-

Refined and added sugar is bad (including honey, it may be natural but gram for gram it is the caloric amount as raw sugar)

Good, natural fats in moderation are not the killer

Eat natural unprocessed whole foods to take the guess work out of avoiding sugar. If you are buying packaged foods make sure you check the dietary info on the back and never buy anything with over 8g of fat per serve