Mince: a good drizzle of olive oil, beef (or other) mince, 1 tablespoon of ground turmeric (or fresh, but I find it hard to come by in New Zealand), 1 tablespoon of dried coriander seeds, salt and pepper to taste.
Flatbread: 2 cups of chickpea flour, another good drizzle of olive oil, 2/3 cup of almond milk, salt to taste.
Toppings: a smidgen of tomato paste, leafy greens, 2 small diced tomatoes, 1 large grated carrot, a few slices of cheese, a couple of dollops of full fat Greek yoghurt, finely chopped fresh chilli and ripped up fresh parsley to garnish.
Steps: Drizzle some olive oil in a pan and heat to a low-medium heat, add mince, turmeric and coriander seeds and break up and stir until cooked through.
While the mince is on the go, mix all flat bread ingredients together with a wooden spoon in a bowl. Spread it into a large flatbread or a few little flatbreads on baking-paper lined trays. You might need to use a wet jar to roll them out a bit. Bake the flatbread for 5-10 minutes.
Take them out, and layer them with a little bit of tomato paste, leafy greens, grated carrot, tomato, mince, and a bit of cheese for each. Bake for around 15 more minutes. Take them out of the oven, drizzle some Greek yoghurt on top, and sprinkle with fresh chilli and parsley. Enjoy!
Food is a wonderful thing! It brings enjoyment and happiness. Most importantly, real food nourishes the body to a cellular level. Real food allows our bodies to grow and operate at an optimum level. Some food, though, does not provide the micronutrients that we need at a cellular level. In turn the body cannot maintain its own health and we end up fat and sick, or worse, dead. Enter, the diet.
Diets are a huge part of human lives in today’s processed-food world. But it has become obvious that humans do not do well with restriction or deprivation, and so most people ‘fail’ their diet(s). The body will only put up with that for so long, and will eventually force you to eat the amount of food it really needs to carry out its processes, or force you to eat variety that a diet deprives you from. But if you are not eating real foods, you will continue eating forever, and never satisfy your nutritional requirements, but still get fat and sick.
But you know what? I reckon failing a diet is okay. Here are some reasons why:
Failed diets weed out the eating patterns that clearly do not work for you. Much like dating! It is part of a journey to discovering a real-food way of eating. You will get there eventually. But you need to discover it yourself.
Failed diets show you that your body requires a vast variety of nutrients and thus foods. They show you that your body might need different foods at different times in your life. Think different seasons, pregnancy, age, level of physical activity and hormonal changes, for example.
A failed diet shows us that not all people need to eat in the same way. What works for one person does not work for another person.
So please, don’t stress if you are continuously failing diets. But please also, do not start another diet. It is so clear that they do not work. We need lots of food, please don’t keep your body from the real amount it needs. Instead, try giving up processed food and just eat the food that grows. Eat the food that we as humans have not meddled with. Eat the foods that you know will nourish you, allow your body to thrive, and won’t cause and feed modern disease. Learn from your failed diets, but don’t repeat the mistake.
Some people might think that eating real food, and therefore cutting out packaged junk, is indeed a diet. I disagree. Eating real food does not deny you of anything that I would actually classify as food. It does not limit the amount of food that you can eat. It does not limit variety. It does, however, help your body to restore and start regulating itself again. That means no cravings and no feeling hungry to the point of starvation. It means you will eat the amount that you need and no more. Your hungry and full hormones will make sure of it. It means you will eat when you’re hungry, and not when you’re not.
Real food will make you happier. I really think you should try it. Forever.
By Franklee Healthy
A little message at the end: These blog posts are simply to help me process my own learning. I have no medical, health-science-y background… although I am studying towards a diploma of nutritional science, and I do my best to consult reliable research. If you see any info that doesn’t quite look right, then great! Comment away with your thoughts, because I would love to know more.
Ingredients: 1 chopped swede, 1 cup of chopped celery, 1 head of garlic, 1 handful of almonds, half a cup of full cream, 2 cups of water, salt and pepper to taste. Grilled bacon or halloumi to garnish would go down well too.
Steps: Pop the whole garlic head into the oven on 200 degrees celsius and roast for 30 minutes. Tak it out, let cool slightly, peel and pop in the slow-cooker. Add all other ingredients, cook on low for 8-10 hours. Blend in a food processor until smooth and serve!
*use homemade stock of some sort instead of water to add more oomph!
Prominent health and medical professionals have, for the entire span of my lifetime, advocated a low fat diet to reach optimum health. Claims that a low fat diet will help reduce heart disease, cholesterol problems and fat gain, and increase longevity have been consistently published for the public eye. A food pyramid was even created, that showed us how to limit our fat intake and up our carbohydrate intake. It seemed logical that if we stop eating fat, we’ll lose fat. Billions of dollars and expertise have been channelled into public nutritional standards and recommendations over these years, so surely they’re onto something good, right?
It is astonishing to realise that these public nutritional recommendations we have been hearing our entire lives, were never actually supported with any reliable scientific proof. They began as hypotheses that appealed to those who were advocating it, and remained as hypothesis without being proven right. Truthfully, they were actually proven wrong, but these findings were, conveniently, never published or publicised. That is, until now. More reliable research from the ‘good scientists’ like Gary Taubes and Malcolm Kendrick is beginning to surface. It rings alarm bells about the previous nutritional beliefs. It is saying that fat (including saturated fat), dietary cholesterol, and even salt, are healthy for the human body. They can also help us lose fat. Food examples include fatty meats, eggs, butter, raw full-fat dairy, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and avocado. Refined carbohydrates, on the other hand, can be extremely harmful for the human body. They can also cause us to gain fat. Food examples include pasta, couscous, white rice, bread and a myriad of processed and packaged foods. In a nutshell, our diminishing intake of fats and salt is harming our health, as is our increased intake of refined carbohydrates.
So, the verdict: FAT IS YOUR FRIEND. There is so much evidence surfacing confirming that eating healthy fat does not make you fat. In fact, it helps you to lose fat. Our bodies need healthy fat to run efficiently, and to stay lean. Higher fat diets also fill you up for longer, meaning you don’t feel like consuming so much food to reach your body’s nutritional needs. Basically, eating fat can help you feel and look healthier.
So, where does one start when they have forever been told fat is bad and carbs are good? It can be a difficult mind shift. Instead of building our meals around carbs and supplementing it with protein (for example pastas and risottos), start with the protein… or better, start with the vegetables! Make meat or veggies the star or your meal. Supplement meat with plenty of clean green vegetables. Of course you can add a handful of good carbohydrates, like sweet potato or other starchier vegetables. Homemade condiments like olive-oil based mayonnaise and sugar-free sauces are a great addition too.
My own diet currently consists of of some red meats, poultry and fish, cooked in generous amounts of olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil and butter. My meals always include lots of fresh, green vegetables along with more vegetables. Avocado appears when it is affordable, and I usually add some sweet potato or parsnip, and occasionally some rice. Spices and herbs are my chosen flavour enhancers. I have eggs, chia puddings, smoothies, leftovers, mug-cakes or natural yoghurt based meals for brekkie. I eat about two pieces of fruit each day, especially blueberries, oranges and kiwifruit. I snack on nuts, seeds, cheese, homemade goodies, eggs, natural greek yoghurt and homemade nut butters. And I never count calories, as it can become an unhealthy obsession. I feel great, and happy! Healthy-fat low-carb for the win!
If you are wondering more about different types of fats, see this bog post.
By the Way: These blog posts are simply to help me process my own learning. I have no medical, health-science-y background… although I am studying towards a diploma of nutritional science. If you see any info that doesn’t quite look right, then great! Comment away with your thoughts, because I would love to know more.
Because banana and chocolate is a match made in heaven. This is easy peasy, quick to whip up, and deeeelicous. It is a treat.
Ingredients: Dry – 1 cup of sunflower seeds, a quarter of a cup of raw cacao powder, a pinch of cinnamon. Wet – 1 ripe banana, 1/2 cup of melted coconut oil.
Steps: Blitz all of the dry ingredients until fine, and oils begin to release (a few minutes if you are patient). Add the wet ingredients and blitz for a few more minutes until super smooth. Pour into a small lined slice tin – or a loaf tin works well. Enjoy with your favourite cup of tea.
Remember to take a snap of your version and tag @frankleehealthy on Facebook and Instagram, so that I can see your creativity!