The Balance of Being - Holistic Nutrition with Alex Mackay
Degree Qualified Nutritionist (BHsc) & Pilates Instructor Alex Mackay available for Nutritional Consults in Warrnambool and online. Plus weekly blog posts to empower and educate you to find the balance in your life!
Whether you've tried pilates, haven't tried, don't know what it is or your a little worried about what it involves, I have put together a 5 minute Booty Burning Pilates workout that you can do from the comfort of your own home! Pilates is about having fun whilst working out so make sure to pop some fun tunes on, grab yourself a water bottle if you need and switch off any other distractions before you get started
FIRST THINGS FIRST, HERE ARE SOME PILATES BASICS:
In pilates we breath in through in the nose and out through the mouth with a forceful exhale on the HARDEST part of the movement. It may seem a little uncomfortable at first, but it really is important I promise! Not only does it make sure that we keep our abdominal muscles switched on the whole class (hello extra ab workout), it also helps us get through the really tough exercises! Follow along with the 'inhale' and 'exhale' cues beside each photo
In pilates we do 10 or 20 counts of each move! The amount you do can depend on your strength and fitness level, what muscle the instructor is trying to target and muscle fatigue rate. Therefore, when your following along below I would suggest starting with 10 counts of each move, and then if you feel comfortable and able, step it up to 20 counts of each move.
In pilates we use cues such as "keep your core switched on" and "squeeze through the glutes" to not only provide adjustments so your in correct alignment for each exercise, but also to get you switched on and thinking about what parts of your body we want to be activating. Follow the cues provided next to each exercise to make sure your working out in the most safe possible way and getting the most out of the exercise!
Do all the exercises on the R leg then once finished all 5 exercises, take a quick drink and stretch if you need then swap onto the L side. Remember you can take breaks at any point in time, so listen to your body. Watch this little video to see how the sequence transitions from one exercise to the next.
Please note: This video only shows Alex doing 5 counts of each for demonstration purposes, either for 10 or 20 counts of each exercise depending on your fitness levels.
Follow the step-by-step guide below for more instructions!
The slice of all slice’s that is sure to kick your chocolate cravings to the curb and satisfy that desire for a crunchy snack at the same time! Packed with nuts, seeds, good quality healthy fats and antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E and zinc they really do tick all the boxes. Read all about the benefits of antioxidants here… Or just skip straight to the recipe below!
SERVES: 16 TIME: 10 MINUTES DIETARY: GF, DF
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup macadamia’s or almonds (roughly chopped)
1⁄2 cup puffed rice (or puffed millet)
1⁄2 cup goji berries
1⁄2 cup desiccated coconut
1⁄4 cup cacao nibs
2 tbsp. hemp seeds (optional)
3/4 cup coconut oil
1⁄2 cup raw cacao powder
3 tbsp. almond butter
1 tbsp. cup rice malt syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. sea salt
Line a rectangular container or slice tray with baking paper (use a little extra coconut oil to stick it down if you need)
Mix the dry ingredients (pumpkin seeds, nuts, goji berries, puffed rice, coconut and cacao nibs) into a bowl
In a saucepan on a low heat- melt the coconut oil then stir in the cacao powder, almond butter, rice malt syrup, vanilla extract and sea salt. Avoid bringing mixture to the boil
Once combined stir chocolate mixture into dry ingredients and then pour into your tray
Pop it in the freezer for 1-2 hours to set and then slice into 16 pieces. Store in the freezer or the fridge!
This recipe is really versatile and easy to make your own so don’t feel like you have to have all the dry ingredients to be able to make it! Eg. If you don’t have 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds at home, simply up your nut portion to 1 cup etc… Get creative and make it your own
With thousands of beauty products on the market it's hard to know which ones are worth forking out money for and which ones are best left on the shelf. When it comes to using natural beauty products, I can tell you I have tried them all! Some are incredible and others just don't meet the mark, so today I have listed for you all my favourites so that you don't have to do the guess work.
But first things first, why use natural beauty products?
My switch from commercial beauty products to natural, organic and chemical free products happened a couple of years ago when I was having a lot of trouble with my own health issues. I had just come off the OCP and my periods were about as irregular as they come (my hormones were going crazy), my liver detoxification pathways weren't functioning efficiently so I was constantly struggling with brain fog and pimples were my new best friend.
As I started investigating how to improve my liver detoxification and hormonal imbalances I fell down a rabbit hole looking into the burden that toxins place on both of these systems and the havoc that results. Whether they were environmental toxins such as pollution, plastics, pesticides or chemicals in self-care/ beauty products they all had a detrimental impact on our liver and hormones... One look at the back of a foundation bottle and you'll be hard pressed to recognise more than 5 ingredients! So I swapped all my plastic containers and drink bottles for glass and aluminium ones, made the choice to eat organic produce as much as possible and lastly decided to change my chemical laden beauty products for natural, organic and chemical free ones!
Result= less stress on the liver to detoxify toxins, more balanced hormones and happy skin!
My favourite natural beauty products...
Most days you'll find me bare faced with only moisturiser on so it's fair to say make-up isn't really my for-tay, however these are my go-to products when I do decide to use something!
To be honest I don't actually wear a foundation as such even when on the rare occasion I am going out at night. Instead I always use the La Mav BB Creme in Medium. It has a thicker coverage than most BB cremes and evens your complexion out perfectly! For every day wear I just wear it on it's own, but for a more fuller coverage I dust some powder over the top.
Hands down the best powder I have found both natural and even commercial!! Either wear it light or build it up for more coverage. Stays on all day long and sits perfectly over the La Mav BB Creme. I use the Raww Contoured Kabuki Brush with it too!
Long-lasting and no flakey business with this mascara! Easily the best natural and cruelty free mascara I have tried. Doesn't cause eye irritation like some chemical based mascaras can, which makes sense because why would your eyes want to be exposed to all those chemicals every time you blink?
This one is a little more expensive than I would normally go but the benefits are worth it!
I am no makeup guru but I got sucked into this one by the shop assistant and truth be told it does make my makeup last longer and sit nicely. I would only really use this if I was heading out somewhere special and wanted my makeup to look a little more flawless, but you could use it everyday! Pretty sure I just heard all the makeup lovers cringe with that sentence
Everyone has different skin types, whether its oily, dry or a combination of the both! When I lived up north in Queensland the La Mav Creme Cleanser was my go-to, but now I am back in the colder climate of Victoria the La Mav Foaming cleanser has been better for my skin! Therefore, have a look at all of La Mav's different ranges to find a cleanser to suit your skin type.
I know what your all thinking... A deodorant paste!? Yep that's right a paste and guess what it'll last you much longer than your spray on or roll on varieties. I have given this to a few friends to try and most of them have ended up buying it them selves. Commercial deodorants are filled with aluminium, fillers and harsh chemicals that are readily absorbed through the skin, especially when we apply it everyday!
Looking for a way to kick those chocolate cravings to the curb? Do your gut a favour at the same time and whip up some Chocolate Tummy Gummies! So addictive that you’ll have to refrain from eating more than 2-3 a day
Whilst the gelatin in these gummies already has AMAZING health benefits such as improving your digestion, skin health and tissue repair (read more about that here), I have also added in Nutra Organics Berry Choc Chunk powder to further increase their nutritional value! The Berry Choc Chunk powder includes nutrients such as magnesium, calcium and vitamins B2, B5 and B12 from whole food sources helping to support our nervous systems, energy levels and digestive health.
However, this recipe is just as delicious when made with raw cacao powder so feel free to swap the Berry Choc Chunk powder for cacao you may just need to tweak the sweetness to meet your taste buds needs!
1-2 tbsp. Rice malt syrup or maple syrup (use less if using Berry Choc Chunk powder as it is naturally sweet already)
1 tsp. vanilla essence
Bloom the gelatin by adding the water to the gelatin in a bowl and stirring until combined. Leave to let it gel for 3 minutes.
Add coconut milk, Berry Choc Chunk powder, sweetener of choice and vanilla essence to a small saucepan. Heat on a stove until just simmering and then remove from the heat. Avoid letting the mixture come to the boil.
Break gelatin into little pieces and gently stir into saucepan until it dissolves.
Pour mixture into moulds or a 10 x 15cm square glass dish (or similar sized one). Let them cool slightly then place in the freezer for 10 minutes to set or in the fridge for 1-2 hours to set.
Gelatin gummies don’t like getting too warm as they can melt! So make sure you keep them in the fridge and just pull one out when your going to eat it
As gelatin is rich in amino acids, it is recommended to limit your consumption of gummies to 2-3 a day unless advised by your health practitioner.
Turkish Delight chocolate is one of my guilty pleasures so why not make it into a sweet treat that you can eat with zero the guilt?! I have used carob in this recipe because I LOVE carob and would pick it over chocolate any day, but feel free to swap the carob for raw cacao powder for a richer chocolate flavour
TURKISH DELIGHT CAROB BLISS BALLS
SERVES: 12 TIME: 15 MINUTES DIETARY: GF, DF, V
4 tbsp. Carob powder
1 1/2 cup raw almonds
1/3 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raw buckwheat groats
2 tbsp. Hemp seeds (for extra protein & omega 3!)
1/2 cup coconut oil
3 medjool dates (pitted)
1 tbsp. rose water
2 tbsp. water
1 pinch of salt
Add all the ingredients to a high powered blender for about 30 seconds or until mixture is nice and crumbly! (If you want them to have a little bit of crunch blend them for less time or at a lower speed so the buckwheat groats stay more in shape)
Add an extra splash of water if your mixture is too dry and isn’t sticky enough
Then roll into balls and then store in the fridge or freezer!
TIP: Dampen your hands with a little bit of water prior to rolling the balls to make it easier and less sticky
Gelatin is the new kid on the block in terms of gut health, but how do you use it? and why is it so good for your gut?
What is Gelatin?
Gelatin is a powder, that when combined with hot water, creates a jelly-like consistency making it great for things like gummies, panna cotta and many more! Gelatin is an amazing source of protein as it is made up of both essential and non-essential amino acids including proline, glycine and glutamine. Whilst non-essential amino acids can be made by the body under normal circumstances, during times of stress, illness and inflammation the body’s ability to naturally produce these amino acids is reduced. Therefore, adding amino acids into the diet where we can through food is the best way to make sure our body is still getting an adequate amount to be able to function optimally!
Why is Gelatin good for your gut health?
As mentioned above, gelatin contains amino acids such as glutamine, which play a vital role in maintaining and repairing our gastrointestinal lining. Heard of leaky gut before? Well glutamine is one of the amazing nutrients that can help to restore the gap junctions and mucosal lining in your stomach, thereby making your gut less permeable (or ‘leaky’) meaning your able to digest, absorb and assimilate your nutrients better! Additionally, gelatin helps to enhance gastric acid secretion making it easier for your gut to digest proteins and fats. What’s not to love?
What other health benefits does Gelatin have?
Glycine can assist liver detoxification in the body
Support tissue repair and recovery especially after injury
Can help to normalise hormone levels through balancing oestrogen levels
Glycine and proline have been found to reduce inflammation in the body making it a great addition for those with auto-immune conditions
Can reduce wrinkles and the presence of cellulite through improving skin elasticity
Can increase satiety (feeling of fullness) due to the protein in gelatin
Plus many more!
How do I use it?
Gelatin gummies (sooo yummy pretty much like lollies) – check out my recipe for my strawberry & cream ones
Where can I buy Gelatin?
As with a lot of health food products, not all Gelatin is created equal therefore opting for a good quality, natural Gelatin is the best way to maximise the health benefits you will gain from consuming it. I personally love Nutra Organics Natural Gelatin which you can purchase at health food stores or via their website! (250g- $11.90 or 500g- $22.95). Changing Habits Organic Gelatin is also a great product! (500g- $39.97)
Gut-loving gummies that taste as good as the real deal? You’ve come to the right place! My clients love adding these into their diet as an extra source of protein, to boost their gut health, speed up tissue repair after injury and even improve their skin health! Want to find out more about what Gelatin is and why it is so good for your gut? Read more here…
Or if your just here for the recipe… read below ; )
STRAWBERRY & CREAM GELATIN GUMMIES
SERVES: 15 TIME: 20 MINUTES DIETARY: GF, DF
1 cup of fresh strawberries
3 1/2 tbsp. gelatin
1 tsp. rose water (optional)
1/2 tbsp. rice malt syrup or 1 tbsp. maple syrup
Juice of half a lemon
Coconut cream layer:
2 tbsp. gelatin
1/3 cup coconut cream
1/2 tbsp. rice malt syrup or 1 tbsp. maple syrup (optional)
Dissolve the gelatin in 1/3 cup cold water plus the rose water (if using) by stirring gently. Allow the mixture to sit for 3 minutes to bloom and form a gel like or ‘rubbery’ substance.
While the gelatin is doing it’s thing add the cup of strawberries and lemon juice to a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Then transfer the mixture to a saucepan on a low heat and add in your sweetener of choice. Break gelatin into small pieces and stir into strawberry mixture until dissolved.
Take saucepan off the stove and pour mixture into moulds HALF WAY (so you have room for the coconut on top) or a 10 x 15cm square glass dish (or similar sized one). Let them cool slightly then place in the freezer for 10 minutes to set while your making the coconut cream layer.
Coconut cream layer:
Dissolve gelatin in 1/4 cup cold water. Allow the mixture to sit for 3 minutes to bloom and expand.
In a small saucepan, gently heat the coconut milk and sweetener of choice (if using) on a low temperature. Again, breaking the gelatin into small pieces, add them to the saucepan and stir until dissolved.
Remove saucepan from the heat and pour coconut cream on top of strawberry layer. Place back in fridge for 2-3 hours or in the freezer for 10 minutes to set.
Once set, you can remove from moulds or if you used a container cut into small squares then store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
Gelatin gummies don’t like getting too warm as they can melt! So make sure you keep them in the fridge and just pull one out when your going to eat it
As gelatin is rich in amino acids, it is recommended to limit your consumption of gummies to 2-3 a day unless advised by your health practitioner.
It is the start of a new year and that means a clean slate right? You’ll do all those things you’ve been saying you want to do but have held off doing until now. You want to exercise more, eat less, loose weight, be healthier, stress less, drink less alcohol… and the list goes on. Despite what we would like, a healthy lifestyle doesn’t happen over night (except for maybe the super disciplined ones- we envy you)... it takes hard work, commitment and sometimes even a little bit of compromise. Hardest thing about having 15 different New Years resolutions? Starting all 15 of them at once and then sticking to them for a whole year can lead to you throwing in the towel on all of them!
Instead, I ask you to write down 3 intentions for the year that you can keep in mind through the good and the bad times and as a reminder of where you want to be this time next year. It could be as simple as being more present when you’re with friends or as far as running a marathon… whatever your intentions are write them down and pull them out whenever you need that little reminder.
So now you've got your 3 intentions, how are you going to implement them and what about the other 12 things you also want to do this year to improve your health? I am a big believer in starting small and building up especially when dietary and lifestyle changes are the centre of your goals in order to make them into life-long, sustainable changes! So whilst your 3 intentions for the year are your main priorities, I have also created a calendar years worth of healthy habits that you can choose to implement each month. By implementing 1 healthy dietary or lifestyle change a month it gives you an opportunity to just focus on that change for the month, as they say it takes 30 days to make a habit! Then by the end of the year you'll hopefully have 12 new healthy habits that are now apart of your everyday life! Winning right?
-YOUR HEALTHY HABIT CALENDAR FOR THE NEW YEAR-
Drink 2L of water every day. Add lemon, berries, mint or anything else that tickles your fancy to your water to make it more appealing if you’re not a huge fan of water. My tip- buy a big water bottle (the glass Voss water bottles from the supermarket are great!) so that you encourage yourself to drink more water and glass a bottle ensures you’re not getting any BPA nasties. Other great drink bottle options are Earth Bottles or Swell Bottles.
Swap that high-intensity HIIT workout for a stress lowering activity such as pilates or yoga to change up your routine a little. You will still build strength and fitness but with the added benefit of supporting your nervous system and building a healthy body image too!
Give your gut some loving and get to the bottom of those uncomfortable digestive symptoms you get everyday… bloating, constipation and cramps I am looking at you guys. Speak to your nutritionist about working out the cause behind these symptoms or implement some of your own gut loving practices such as enjoying a cup of bone broth daily, making gelatin gummies, adding some extra fibre into your diet, reducing stress levels or adding fermented foods into your diet!
Include 2 cups of vegetables to every main meal (breakfast, lunch and dinner). You might be thinking how on earth is that possible, especially for breakfast! There is plenty of ways to get vegetables into your breakfast such as making omelet’s, breaky salad bowls, green smoothies and juices. By aiming to include two cups of vegetables in every main meal you will be reaching your recommended 6 cups a day and being increasing your fibre, nutrient and antioxidant intake!
Go for a 40 minute walk every day (or every other day). My tip to keep you motivated especially in the cold months? Stick a note on your mirror with your desired amount of walks per week (Eg. 4 walks) and draw a little box next to each number. Then each time you go for a walk that week tick one of the boxes until all the boxes are full!
Junk free June! Make a conscious effort in June to ditch the unhealthy, packaged snacks and swap them from healthy alternatives. For example, swap chocolate for bliss balls, ice cream for frozen and blended fruit, potato chips for air popped popcorn, soft drink for Kombucha!
Try dry July and say see-you-bye to alcohol for a month! Not only will your liver love you, your wallet will also be giving you a friendly hi-five too. To help give your liver some extra lovin’ while your staying away from alcohol bump up your intake of brassica vegetables such as kale, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts and your antioxidants such as beetroots, berries, turmeric! The nutrients from these wholesome foods will help support your liver detoxification meaning your clearing toxins from your body more effectively!
Practice mindfulness and self love! Whether that is downloading a meditation App. on your phone (my favourite is ‘Calm’), putting your feet in the sand, practicing yoga or simply sitting for 10 minutes listening to music. I know it might seem a little silly at first, but speaking from experience each one of these activities can really change your state and frame of mind.
Switch your phone off by 7pm each night and reduce that blue light stimulation before bed! The blue light that is created by our phones and laptops stimulates the brain and disrupts the natural production of melatonin (our sleep hormone) which can affect your ability to have a deep sleep at night. Switching off from your phone is also a great way to work on being more present with those around you and living in the moment!
Swap that piece of chocolate or scoop of ice cream after dinner for a peppermint and licorice. If your dinner contains all the essentials such as good quality proteins, carbohydrates and fats then sugar cravings at night time should be a thing of the past! However, if you still have a bit of sweet tooth after dinner try find a yummy herbal tea with a bit of sweetness to quick the craving to the curb instead of reaching for the chocolate and undoing all your healthy eating for the day.
This one may be easier for some than others… ditch coffee for a month! Swap your coffee for a turmeric latte, dandelion latte or green tea and give your adrenal glands and gut a break from the coffee.
It is the month of celebrations or the silly season as they say! So instead of implementing a new habit this month try to practice MODERATION. I am all about BALANCE meaning having a treat everyone now and then isn't going to undo all your hard work. However, when 1 treat turns into treat day, then treat week, then treat month thats where we start to unravel. So this December, enjoy the celebrations but do so in moderation!
I wish you all an amazing and rewarding 2018, I can't wait to see what this year will bring for everyone! Always remember to be kind to yourself, do you best in your circumstances and never be afraid to ask for help along the way
It is hard to believe that Christmas is less than 2 weeks away (where did December go!?) and if your like me your Christmas tree is still yet to be filled with gifts to go underneath it. Maybe you haven’t had time to go Christmas shopping, maybe you can’t be bothered or maybe your just don’t know what to buy the special people in your life. Whatever the reason if you have a health conscious person or even someone that you want to inspire to live a healthy life on your christmas shopping list look no further to get you motivated with ideas!
– CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE –
1. Pilates or Nutrition Gift Voucher
What better way to treat your loved one than giving the gift of health! Gift vouchers can be made out to any value are can be redeemed for either pilates classes or nutrition consults. To organise a voucher send me a message or ask at your next pilates class!
Who wouldn’t want to keep their liquids cold for 24 hours or warm for 12? Especially with Summer heating up you can’t go past icy cold water on a hot day! Drinking from a stainless steal bottle rather than plastic reduces your exposure to nasty BPA and BPS chemicals and if your like me and your drink bottle gets a bashing it was smash like a glass bottle (win win!).
Looking for an organic, raw and vegan lip balm that feels amazing but doesn’t break the bank? Look no further!! With an amazing range of colours and flavours to suit everyones needs Hurraw! is my go to for keeping my lips hydrated and soft. My favourites are ‘Chai Spice’ for every day wear and the ‘Black Cherry’ when I want a little bit more colour!
PS. The tanned bag pictured is Elms & King which would also make a perfect gift! Buy them online at Frankie Upstairs or if your local head to their Port Fairy store! You might find some extra Christmas goodies while your there too
4. Yoga Mat
Give your loved one a mat they love so much that they can’t wait to use it each week at their pilates or yoga classes! Whether they are eco-conscience people, like a mat that looks pretty or both, there is options for everyone and every christmas present budget!
Everyone loves a good bath bomb to relax and unwind… so when you add in the Naturopathic benefits of SOWKH’s bath bombs you really have hit the health conscious jackpot! With therapeutic, herbal and botanical goodness, all of SOWKH products excludes any potentially harmful and toxic nasties such as SLS, artificial colours or artificial fragrance oils. Best of all they look beautiful making them the perfect KK present or stocking filler!
Antioxidants, I am sure by now most of us would have seen the word slashed across products at supermarkets, health food shops and even restaurants… But is ‘antioxidant’ just another buzz word like ‘superfood’ or does it really have benefits for your health? And while we are on the topic, will antioxidants really make me age slower? Also what foods are they in?
Antioxidants help prevent cell damage…
In a nutshell, antioxidants help to neutralise and mop up free radicals in the body to reduce the risk of them damaging our precious DNA and cells. Free radicals are little scavengers that are produced by the body as a result of oxygen metabolism and whilst they are unavoidable, too many free radicals and not enough antioxidants is a recipe for disaster. When this balance between free radicals and antioxidants becomes unstable it leads to what we call “oxidative stress”. Oxidative stress can result in premature ageing, damage to your DNA, inflammation, and chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer.
What causes oxidative stress?
There are many different process and substances that can contribute to oxidative stress including:
Lack of antioxidants in the diet
Emotional and psychological stress
Eat charred foods
Cigarette smoke (direct or second hand)
Too much sugar
Too much animal protein in the diet
Imbalance of gut bacteria/ bacterial overgrowth
Plastics and phthalates
Chemical cleaning supplies
Oils that have been heated to very high temperatures
Pesticide exposure- environmentally/ in your food (more information here)
Artificial colours and flavouring
What foods are antioxidants in?
You would be reading until tomorrow if I was to list ALL the antioxidants, so I thought I would just make note of a few of big guys that you might see in your everyday food…
Beta-Carotene: Is the antioxidant that gives carrots, sweet potatoes and pumpkins their bright, vibrant colour! In the body beta-carotene is converted to another powerful antioxidant, vitamin A, which has been found to improve night blindness, improve immune system function and defend against cancer mutations. Good sources of beta-carotene include orange vegetables, as well as dark leafy greens and tomatoes.
Vitamin C: Also know as ascorbic acid, plays a major role in protecting the body against those free radicals we spoke of before by boosting your immune function and supporting your liver! Additionally, it also helps to maintain adequate levels of vitamin E in the body in states of oxidative stress therefore elongating the antioxidant effect of vitamin E (winning!). To get your daily dose of vitamin C ditch the store brought orange juice for richer sources including kiwi fruit, strawberries, capsicums, kale and broccoli.
Vitamin E: Is your go to for glowing skin and an amazing complexion… see you later premature ageing. Add almonds, sunflower seeds, avocado, spinach and sweet potato to your diet to bump up your vitamin E levels!
Glutathione: Is like the master antioxidant! It is produced naturally in the body as a result of three amino acids- cysteine, glycine and glutamine- and its main role is to recycle all of the other antioxidants.
You see, dealing with free radicals is like playing pass the parcel, except glutathione is always the winner when the music stops, until it gets OVER-LOADED with presents (or free radicals) and says I have had enough. As the free radicals (or parcel) gets passes from vitamin C to vitamin E to lipoic acid and finally to glutathione (where the music stops), it is glutathione’s job to remove the free radicals (or take the wrapping paper off) in order to regenerate another glutathione molecule (or another present) so that it can do its round of the body again (or circle if your still following with the analogy ;)). But when glutathione gets overloaded with oxidative stress/ toxins (or presents), glutathione becomes depleted and can no longer protect the body against free radicals, mutations, infections or remove toxins from the body.
Therefore, to maintain adequate levels of glutathione in the body and make sure it keeps getting all the presents (greedy bastard), minimising oxidative stress is your first port of call. Additionally, including sulphur rich foods such as onion, garlic and brassica vegetables such as kale, broccoli and cauliflower in the diet can be beneficial- as well as speaking with your Nutritionist about getting a good quality nutritional supplement!
Selenium: Is glutathione’s best friend… it naturally helps the body recycle and produce more glutathione! Selenium also plays a big role in your immune system and thyroid metabolism. Best of all, you only need 2 brazil nuts a day to reach your daily selenium intake!
Turmeric: The active component of turmeric- curcumin- is a potent antioxidant that has been found to reduce oxidative damage to DNA in the body, as well as act as powerful anti-inflammatory agent! These two factors contribute to the role curcumin can play in reducing the body’s inflammatory response and risk of developing chronic conditions such as cancer, atherosclerosis, and neurodegenerative diseases. Curcumin has also been found to act as a great anti-inflammatory agent in the gut, reducing inflammation that may be created from food intolerances, mucosal damage and/ or conditions such as IBS and IBD.
Zinc: Ohhhh zinc, with a role in over 300 enzymatic reactions its no wonder that also helps reduce oxidative stress! With powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits, zinc has been shown to support healthy cell division, prevent cancerous cell mutation and also helps to reduce acne! The best sources of zinc include spinach, pumpkin seeds, oysters and cashews.
My rule of thumb for working what foods are rich in antioxidants?
If it stains your hands or clothes your on the right track Beetroot- yep! Turmeric- STAINS EVERYTHING! Berries- hello purple hands! You get the point…
Eating a wholesome, balanced diet with an ABUNDANCE of fruit, vegetables and fresh herbs is a sure way to get those essential antioxidants into your diet so you can say goodbye to premature ageing and hello to glowing skin! Try out my Antioxidant Smoothie to get you started