My favourite nut bars to keep in your handbag

My favourite nut bars to keep in your handbag

Are you a snacker?  Do you like something sweet with your morning coffee?  I am, especially as I am up early with the kids and do my exercise then, so by morning tea breakfast is a distant memory.  A nut bar can be a handy shelf stable option that will survive be kept in your handbag or office drawer.  Here are my favourite supermarket finds.

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Oat and ricotta protein waffles

Oat and ricotta protein waffles

Healthy waffles made with oats for fibre and gut health, ricotta and eggs for muscle building protein and chia seeds for omega 3 fats.  This is a great healthy breakfast that tastes great.  Fodmap friendly too!

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Mid-week Mojito

Presenting my mid week mojito...


INGREDIENTS

  • 4 peppermint tea bags
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • plenty of ice
  • maple syrup (optional)

METHOD

  1. Add the teabags to 1 litre of boiling water and leave to steep in the fridge for 2 hours 
  2. Half fill a jug with ice, mint leaves and the lime juice.  Add the cooled tea.
  3. Stir through 1 tab table syrup if you like it sweet
  4. Enjoy in the sun!

7 tips for mindful eating at Easter

I love the Easter break - we usually head to Canberra for some gorgeous Autumn weather and have an easter egg hunt in my parent's garden with the other grandchildren.  As a nutritionist you might be surprised that I like to enjoy nibbling on a chocolate egg myself, I'm not in the corner enjoying a "guilt free" paleo bliss ball or other such nonsense.  Indulging in festive treats with your family is part of normal, healthy eating.  Easter can be a tough time for those on a self-imposed ‘diet’ or without support for a disordered eating condition. Here's my top tips for enjoying Easter mindfully with your family and friends so that you can manage your weight, energy levels and mood:

  1.  Choose good quality dark chocolate that you really enjoy.  Savour it.  Don't eat it in front of TV or Facebook.  Think about how much you are enjoying that piece and when your pleasure diminishes put the egg away.
  2. Don't waste your calories on tiny little choc eggs that are full of fillers.  Psychologically with the little eggs you don't realise how many calories you are actually consuming and a small bag can set you back 800 calories or so
  3. If chocolate isn't your thing perhaps your gift from loved ones could be a new running top, a great book or movie tickets
  4. Use the Easter break as an opportunity to fit in more exercise, either with your family or solo.  We are planning some parkrun tourism as a family, I am heading to the gym before we leave tomorrow morning for a strength workout and I'll be slotting in a long solo run on Monday.  Take your kids for a bike ride or to the park for a game of footy.
  5. Save the Hot Cross buns for Easter Sunday, they are a treat - you don't need them late April when I can guarantee they will still be on sale.  I buy the mini buns or bake them myself 
  6. Tune into your body's signals of hunger and fullness.  The answer to the question "how much chocolate is too much" is feeling uncomfortably full or sick or no longer enjoying the food while eating it.
  7. Give away or toss any low quality extras after Monday - if they are in the house you or the kids will eat them eventually

Good quality dark chocolate has been linked to reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and improved exercise performance.  The health benefits are due to the flavenols in the cocoa which are full of potent antioxidants.  Don't forget though that flavenols are also contained in fruit, vegetables, red wine and tea.

Consider Mindful Eating  over the Easter break by making more conscious food choices, paying attention to how you eat, and practicing self-acceptance.   Happy Easter!

Do you need help getting your healthy eating back on track?  My 6 week customised nutrition program was specially designed to help you establish healthy eating habits, lose weight,  or recover from the diet cycle.  Find out more here.  

 

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Lemon - raspberry lunchbox muffins

I love to make a bunch of these on a Sunday afternoon and freeze in snap lock bags to pop in the kids' lunches.  Did you know you can usually modify your standard muffin or cake recipe by reducing the amount of sugar or butter by about half?   The only change you will notice is that the muffin goes stale quicker, which is why I freeze them.  I've been enjoying using wholemeal spelt flour (available from the supermarket), it  has a higher amino acid profile then regular wheat flours, it’s also high in fibre with a low GI for sustained energy. gluten-free-raspberry-ginger-muffins-940x600

Lemon - raspberry lunchbox muffins
Author: rachel
Ingredients
  • 300g plain wholemeal or spelt flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 90g raw sugar (or coconut sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 220ml buttermilk (if you don't have butter milk use 1/2 cup plain yoghurt and fill up with milk to 220ml)
  • 80ml olive or macadamia oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 160g frozen (not thawed) raspberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 C/160 C fan-forced/gas mark 3.
  2. Mix the flour, baking powder, lemon zest and sugar in a large bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the lemon juice, honey, egg, buttermilk, oil, vanilla and honey until combined. Don't worry if it curdles!
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined – don’t overmix.
  5. Gently stir through the raspberries
  6. Spoon the mixture into 12 1/2 cup capacity muffin tins lined with paper or silicon cases.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes or until cooked. A skewer should come out clean.
  8. Variations:
  9. - replace the lemon with orange and add 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
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