Tag Archives: health

How To: Look Like Miranda Kerr

… or at least emulate her supermodel glow by gulping down the same superfood-packed green smoothie that the Aussie model starts her days with.*

The lovely people at Total Vita have generously supplied me with some of the ingredients (thank you!!) so that I could whip one up for myself. Hoorah for me!

Total Vita is an awesome online natural health goods store. Check them out at www.totalvita.com.au for all your healthy and organic food, supplements, vitamins, natural beauty and eco-friendly home product needs!

I come across a lot of green smoothie recipes and I was expecting it to be the usual spinach, kale, cucumber concoction. But not so! One ultimate nutrient-packed breakfast smoothie will require the following..

Kerr’s Ultimate Morning Smoothie

IMG_2244

Ingredients

  • 1 glass (235mL) fresh coconut water – mine came from a carton but it’s close enough for these purposes
  • 1 glass (235mL) cold-pressed coconut milk
  • 1 tbs acai berries antioxidant-rich fruit (layman’s terms: anti-cancer, anti-disease, anti-aging!!). I used acai powder.
  • 1 tbs chia seeds – these tiny little suckers (pun intended) will soak up liquid and go all gelatinous. They are great for colon-cleansing (high-fibre), they are gluten-free, full of Omega-3’s, are a complete protein with all essential amino acids, are high in antioxidants, vitamin C and calcium, and are great for healthy hair skin and nails – why hello there Kerr glow!
  • 1 tbs maca powder – this vitality enhancer will give you a big boost of energy, especially in the bedroom! Woot woo!
  • 1 tbs spirulina – a true “superfood” jam-packed with goodness but the big ticket here is its high Chlorophyll content. It will help remove toxins from the blood, bind with heavy metals in the body and help remove them, alkalise your body and boost your immune system.
  • 1 tbs goji berry powder – nutritional powerhouses, these berries are used in traditional Chinese medicine to help with improving eyesight, cleansing the blood, improving the condition of the skin and increasing longevity! I used actual berries and not powder.
  • 1 tbs raw cocoa powderrich in antioxidants and magnesium and deliciously chocolatey – sold!
  • 1.5 tbs vegan rice protein powder

Method

Throw all ingredients into a powerful blender (like a Vitamix) and whiz until smooth and creamy. I blended mine with lots of ice.

Verdict

Jam-packed full of nutrients and a little luxe, but how does it taste? Well I won’t say it’s the most delicious green concoction I’ve tried but it’s not too bad, especially considering it’s got a good dose of spirulina, which I normally find rather offensive and unpalatable. Here you can’t really taste it at all. Just remind yourself of all the health benefits and the vision of your Kerr-like strut down the runway (aka street), blend it with plenty of ice, and you’ll be powered all the way until lunchtime.

IMG_2239 IMG_2241 IMG_2242 IMG_2243 IMG_2246

*Recently featured on Net-a-Porter’s The Body Beautiful video series: http://www.net-a-porter.com/magazine/200/21

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Challenge for August: No Processed Sugars! (and Raw Carrot Cake Recipe)

Hey everyone! Happy Friday to all!

I know I’ve been M.I.A. and have been neglecting you (I’m so sorry!) but rest assured I have been keeping healthy, staying dry (I completed the Dry July charity challenge and raised over $500 for cancer research) and busy dreaming up all sorts of new ideas to post about.

Dry July

Staying booze-free wasn’t too hard at all. The most challenging times were the first few Friday afternoons (I love an after-work red to kick off the weekend), a friend’s 30th (but I got over it after the first hour) and another friend’s birthday dinner (and I soon got over that after the food arrived – oink). I did however, find myself eating a lot more sweets and treats, justifying to myself that since I wasn’t drinking, I was consuming fewer calories anyway, or they were at least cancelling each other out.

BUT as we all know, it’s not (all) about the calories right?  I was consuming more processed sugar than before and unless you’ve been living under a rock, you don’t need me to tell you that nasty processed sugar is addictive and detrimental to your health! Yuck!

There are many opinions out there about sugar – processed and naturally occurring – and how much one should consume. I don’t purport to be an expert on it so I won’t preach here, but I will share with you what works for me, and how I want to eat.

Challenge for August

Now bringing it back to where I started off.. Taking on the Dry July challenge was fantastic – it gave me a goal to work towards and achieving it was very rewarding. I felt positive in body and mind. So I thought, why not take on another challenge in August: No processed sugars?!

Let me be clear: This isn’t a license for me to go and eat barrels of fruit a day and ladle honey over my morning muesli like it’s going out of fashion – a balanced diet is still important – it is an attempt to minimise the amount of processed sugars consumed. Sugar is in so many unsuspecting food items (like Ketchup and many of the Asian sauces we cook with plus so much more!) I can’t possibly cut them all out, but I can at least try to make “sugar swaps” – using healthier natural alternatives where possible – and cut out those blocks of Cadbury after dinner each night, and that 3pm cupcake at work, “you know, because it’s Tuesday”.

I’ll be experimenting with some different sugar alternatives, and working on some other greener meals and snacks, so stay tuned!

Raw Carrot Cake*

Depending on which way you look at it, this could be the perfect (or counter-intuitive) way to bring on my August challenge: a raw carrot cake using only natural ingredients and no added processed sugars (only honey and fruit are used as sweeteners). Just remember that cake is meant to be a treat, so enjoy in moderation.

raw carrot cake

Ingredients

  • 2.5 cups walnuts
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup organic rolled oats – I used my morning raw muesli mix already stocked in the pantry (my cake batter was scattered with almonds, pepitas, sultanas and coconut – yum!) 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan rock salt – I love a touch of saltiness in my sweet!
  • 12 large fresh dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup dried chopped apricots or pineapple – I used a combination of both
  • 2 large raw carrots, grated
  • 1 orange
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste – which I didn’t have so I used 2 tsp natural vanilla essence
  • 2 tbs raw protein powder

Method

  1. Combine walnuts, chia, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, protein powder, orange zest and salt into a food processor and processed until mixed and finely chopped.
  2. Add dates and apricots then process again until mixed through.
  3. Add grated carrot and vanilla and then process again until combined. The mix should now form a lovely dough.
  4. Tip into a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add oats and kneed through the mixture.
  6. Press cake firmly into a 15-20cm baking tin that is lined with baking paper.
  7. Store in the fridge until ready to serve. Leave at least 2 hours to allow the carrot cake to rest.
  8. Lick fingers and bowl.
  9. Enjoy as is or with your choice of frosting.

Frosting Ideas

  1. Greek yoghurt or coconut yoghurt
  2. For a raw cashew or macadamia nut cream, combine 1 cup raw nuts with 1/2 cup orange juice or coconut water and a little vanilla. Blend in Vitamix until smooth and creamy
  3. For a cream cheese style frosting, combine 250g soft cream cheese with a little lemon zest, juice, vanilla and maple syrup and honey, and beat until combined and creamy. You can use quark or Neutachafel (try Flannery’s, I think Barambah organics makes a quark) or a naughty but easily-accessible option is Philadelphia cream cheese (not raw or sugar free!!).

This cake is rather dense, and will cut up into about 16 slices. I ate 3 in the first day – oops! Enjoy xx

*Recipe credit to Teresa Cutter, The Health Chef: http://www.thehealthychef.com/2013/07/raw-carrot-cake/
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How to Spring Clean your Makeup

Picture of organised makeupYes I know, it’s winter.. but recently I de-cluttered my wardrobe, and if you know me at all, you won’t be surprised when I tell you that I whipped myself up into a bit of a frenzy and started tackling other areas of my home. One of these was the bathroom.

Skincare

I emptied out all the cupboards and tossed all products that:

  1. Had been there for over 2 years. If you haven’t used it in the last 2 years, you’re not going to start now.
  2. Had a suspicious smell, colour or was growing something (read: petri dish – ick!)

Remember that your skin is your largest organ and it absorbs 60% of the products used topically! So if you wouldn’t eat the product, it’s safe to say you probably don’t want it on your skin.

Picture of messed up beauty products

Tip out all your makeup bags and drawers

Makeup

There are a few things to consider when assessing which of your cosmetics will make the cut, such as:

  1. Have you had an eye infection / pimple / cold sore?
  2. How has it been stored?
  3. What type product is it? (ie. liquid, powder, cream etc)
  4. How do you apply it? (ie. clean fingers and brushes? Be honest!!)

Here is a general guide on lifespans:*

Mascaras

3 months (4-6 max)

Eye Pencils

2 years – sharpen and clean regularly and PLEASE DON’T SHARE with others!

Eye Shadows

Liquids and creams for 1 year. Powder for 2.

Lipsticks and Lip Pencils

2 years

Powders and Blushes

Cream 1 year. Powder 2.

Foundations and Concealers

Oil-free foundations and liquid concealers, give them a year. Moisturising foundations and stick concealers, 1.5 years.

Cleaning Makeup Brushes

Clean brushes and applicators will help your makeup (and skin!!) stay clean, and your makeup will last longer also. Look after your makeup brushes by cleaning them regularly. It kills bacteria and keeps the bristles soft.

  1. Use a professional makeup cleaner, organic or baby shampoo, or mix 1 part vinegar with 2 parts warm water
  2. Wash the brushes in a small bowl, swirling them around to encourage thorough cleaning
  3. Rise the brushes under the tap
  4. Re-mould the brushes to their original shape
  5. Lay them flat to dry overnight

Try not to get the glued bit wet otherwise the bristles will fall out.

Picture of cleaning makeup brushes

Re-mould the bristles and lay flat to dry overnight

Staying Organised

I keep my makeup stored in one of these bad boys from Officeworks**. It’s easy to stay organised and see what you’ve got. Much better than rummaging through makeup purses and inadvertently forgetting to use that fabulous new Chanel lippy that’s fallen to the bottom of the bag. Plus it’s only $15! Cheap n chic.

Picture of organised makeupHappy organising!

*Most products have little symbols indicating how long they should be kept. Another good tip is to mark on the product when you opened it, then you’ll know exactly when it’s past it’s use-by date.

**http://www.officeworks.com.au/retail/products/Office-Supplies/Desk-Accessories/Desk-Organisers/Drawer-Tidy/SEDD113

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