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.

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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