Summer Salmon Salad
Salmon Salad, a delicious meal for hot days….eat it with fresh, crusty sourdough bread, or, as shown, use Cos lettuce leaves for scoops of mouth-watering, healthy summer food with added crunch
Prep time: 20 minutes
2 medium potatoes
1 can pink salmon, 415 g.
1 can red salmon, 105 g.
2-3 tbsp. whole egg mayonnaise, soy-mayonnaise or an egg-free substitute
3-4 tbsp. of good quality real, natural yogurt (Greek style, thick)
1/2 tbsp. of tomato sauce
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
fresh lemon juice
Cos lettuce leaves
How to make it (even for low level cooking skills)
Peel and boil potatoes. Drain, mash with fork, set aside to cool.
Drain the liquid from the cans of salmon. Mix red and pink together; the red salmon adds depth of flavour while pink salmon keeps costs down.
Clean salmon: remove black skin parts, etc., but keep bones in the mixture. Mash with fork or with blender to ensure bones are completely emulsified (the bones provide excellent calcium, so why throw them out?).
Mix cleaned salmon in with potatoes. Set aside.
Mix mayo (or substitute), tomato sauce, mustard and yogurt in a bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and lemon juice to own liking.
Mix sauce into potato and salmon mix. Mash together, but keep a level of texture in it; don’t “puree” it. Store in fridge for 1 hour before serving.
Serve as desired: add boiled eggs, tomatoes, etc as per your own liking. See photo. Serve with fresh breads, in a wrap, on a Cos leaf or as a dip with crackers.
This Salmon Salad can be stored in the fridge for maximum 48 hours.
TIP: Do not mix tomatoes and cucumber into the Salmon Salad mix. The liquids from these vegies will make the mixture go quite soggy, and it will diminish flavour and texture.
Manufactured meats…mystery foods with strange ingredients
Almost everyone will have some form of manufactured meats in their fridge. (Unless you are vegan or vegetarian). Manufactured meats are a common staple food. Your family likes them, is used to them and expects them. But, do you know what is in them? Generally speaking, manufactured meats are mystery foods with strange ingredients. Read on, and be prepared to be shocked.
Ham, kabana, salami, sausages…
Of course, ham is a favourite for sandwiches. Kabana or salami cannot be missing from any decent party platter.
Not only that, but your BBQ is simply not complete without a dozen humble sausages sizzling away. Manufactured meats are everywhere, are a common part of the Australian diet, and can be of a good, or a terrible quality. Which meats are okay for your family, and what should you avoid, or at least be aware of?
What can you expect in manufactured meats?
What can you expect in manufactured meats? Good question. It all depends on the manufacturer, the type of meat, the quality and its shelf life.
Meat products ingredients are governed by regulations. However, regulations use the term “meat” loosely. Meat can be anything that is connected to an animal, except for offall. Unfortunately, everything found between the nose to the tip of the tail is regarded as meat, apart from the heart, tongue, liver, kidneys, brain and tripe. That leaves a lot of body parts you don’t really want not eat! Manufactured meats need to have a minimum of 50% “meat”, and no more than 50% fat.
In general, products that are hand-made or from an artisan source (such as special salamis, Polish sausages, and other delicatessen) may potentially have the best( i.e. cleanest) ingredients. Most often, these products are made with care, love and traditional recipes. However, be aware that salt will always be high. Sodium works as a preservation agent, and seals moisture in the product. Ask about the use of preservatives; real craftspeople won’t mind.
Not just sausages…
Sadly, it’s not just sausages filled with the cheapest and nastiest body parts permitted. The same goes for Frankfurters, hot dogs, cocktail sausages, Devon, Spam and the so-called “Smiley” or “Thomas the Tank Engine” sliced meats you can buy at any supermarket. Not only is the meat content of extremely low quality (that’s why it’s cheap), these products are also full of additives. The colours of the meat (red, pink, and mixed in the Smiley) stand out as quite un-natural. That’s because they are! Bright pink hotdogs look like that because of the use of nitrites/nitrates. Same for the patterns in kids’ cold meats. Other additives will be present too, making these foods very undesirable. Meat pies have come under scrutiny too, as they are well-known to contain huge amounts of fat; some pies only contain 23% meat! The rest is…you don’t want to know…
Nitrates, sulphates and sodium
Generally speaking, manufactured meats contain Nitrates/Nitrites, Sulphites and Sodium. Nitrites give meat a bright, fresh, red colour. Nitrates occur naturally in plants and foods and pose no risk. Chemical nitrites do. They are regarded as potential carcinogenic. Sulphur is a naturally occurring chemical too, and does no harm. In fact, it is an important component of the anti-inflammatory effect of foods such as cabbage and broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and cauliflower. It is also in eggs. However, sulphur dioxide (SO2) is approved as a preservative. As a result, sulphites can cause severe allergic reactions in those who are sulphur sensitive.
Shape, colour, texture…your clues to manufactured meat choices
Let’s be real. The shape, colour and texture of the manufactured meat can tell you a lot. Is it a natural ham-off-the-bone? Great. If you like ham, enjoy! Is it a square, pre-sliced piece of meat, in exactly the right size to fit a sandwich? Run as fast as you can…Surely, no pig is born with a square bum the size of your bread. This is not real. This is compressed meat. Highly likely, it’s injected with salty water. Water increases weight, (increases profit) and salt holds the water! Furthermore, expect preservatives for long shelf-life(sulphites) and nitrites to give it colour. The same applies to the Smiley and Thomas sliced meats. No meat is born that way!
Being smart about manufactured meats
Being smart about manufactured meats will help you determine what you permit in your body. Want some bacon on a Sunday morning? Of course, not really a great food, full of sodium and the above-mentioned preservatives, but view it as a treat. Not too often, then it’s (sort of) okay. Serving a party platter? Look for alternatives to pre-packed mass-produced hams, etc. Try Prosciutto or Parma ham( expensive but worth it) or local ham-off-the-bone. Same for salami; good quality hand-made, but accept some sulphites and nitrates as well. Ask your local butcher or deli if you can read the label of the product if available. Avoid hot dogs, cocktail sausages, Devon, Smileys and the lot. After all, you can live without those!
Choose wisely, look for quality over price, and enjoy your occasional manufactured meats as a treat
Golden Date Milk
Golden Date Milk…an even better version of the popular Golden Milk, this recipe brings extra benefits for a restful sleep. With Golden Date Milk, you include dates, obviously, and vary some of the original ingredients to your own liking. Golden Milk originates from India, whereas Date Milk has its roots in the Middle East.
Normally, in India, spices such as turmeric, ginger, cinnamon and cardamom simmer in cow- or plant-based milk. First of all, there are numerous benefits of turmeric: it is anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and good for brain health and mood regulation. Secondly, cinnamon has blood sugar regulating abilities and helps improve digestion and soothing the stomach. To top it off, ginger is an anti-inflammatory too, a digestive stimulant, and has a natural chemical compound that has slight sedative qualities. All in all, a winner on all fronts. Even more so, as research has shown that in combination, these spices have even more impressive health benefits.
In addition, we include dates in this recipe, giving it an more Middle Eastern twist. There, kids and adults drink Date Milk before bed to get a good night’s rest. Dates are rich in tryptophan, which helps relaxation. Combine the two recipes and cultures and you get a great-tasting Golden Date Milk drink that promotes restfulness and sleep. Moreover, it’s easy to prepare, and full of minerals and anti-oxidants.
Golden Date Milk Recipe
- 200 ml milk of your choice – cow or plant-based
- 5 Medjool dates, chopped into small pieces
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground turmeric, or 1 tsp powdered turmeric
- 1/4 tsp grated fresh ginger, or 1/2 tsp of ginger powder
- 1/2 tsp of cinnamon powder, to sprinkle on top
- 1 tsp of honey (optional, as the dates already make this a sweet tasting drink)
Put all ingredients, except cinnamon, in a small pot and bring to heat. Once at near-boiling point, reduce heat and simmer on lowest setting for around 10 minutes. Strain as desired, or chew the little date pieces in the milk to add extra taste. Serve with the cinnamon sprinkled on top.
Be mindful that little children can choke on the date pieces, so straining is a must.
This delicious and highly beneficial drink is also really nice as a cold milk drink. You can make bigger quantities as desired and store it in the fridge for up to 48 hours.
Sweet dreams…Golden Date Milk
A cool recipe for hot days…Mango Iced Tea
Use per 1 liter water
1 large ripe mango or two small ones
1 tbsp. of honey or raw sugar (optional)
squeeze of lemon or lime juice
Make this recipe as is, or dilute it with ice-cubes or water
Full of anti-oxidants and vitamin C
Boil half of the water and pour over teabags. Brew 3-5 minutes, depending on how strong you like your tea. Meanwhile, peel the fruit. Slice the outer layer of the mango into small chunks of flesh, drop them in the remaining 500 ml cold water. Hold the remaining mango above the cold water and squeeze the flesh around the pip while removing the remainder of the flesh as a pulp. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime, and stir.
Remove teabags, stir in honey/sugar until dissolved. Mix the tea brew with the mango water. Set in fridge to cool. Make it taste super special by serving it sprinkled with some coconut flakes and a dusting of cinnamon. Do it as a mocktail? Serve in cocktail glass and add a thin slice of lemon on the side of the glass to make it look super fancy
This recipe works with all current seasonal stone fruits, and is a great way to use up fruit that is getting almost too ripe. Mixing fruits can be really good too; adding pineapple creates an even richer flavour to your iced tea.
Have a great summer
Top trends in nutrition
What’s hot, and what’s not?
Manufacturers and producers try to stay a step ahead of new, all-important consumer trends. So, what’s hot for 2019? Read on and see what experts predict as top trends for our food, diet and nutrition.
Fibre, a simple food in the top trends
Research shows that in the UK, fibre-rich food intake has gone up by 33% across the population. As we learn more about the benefits of fibre, its popularity rises. From gut health to weight management, and even mental health, keep your eyes on this food group. In addition to fibre, pre- and probiotics will play a key role in our health, nutrition and foods this year.
Techno food and nutrition trends
Can we expect the rise of “personalised nutrition” to boom in the next few years? In 2019, we see lots of start-up firms expanding in this field. We are already very familiar with wearable apps and tech tools that let us measure activity levels, heart rate, calorie intake and more. Now we seem ready to let companies tailor our diets based on our DNA. Whether this is affordable for each person remains to be seen. Furthermore, there is clear evidence that it’s not just our DNA that predicts health or illness…our environments play a huge role too, be that clean air or too much stress. Because of that, this is an area to watch and the future will tell if this is a viable solution to optimal health.
Pre-, pro- and post-biotics: nutrition trends to watch
Pre-and probiotics experienced a surge of exiting new applications in the past year, and this will continue. The more we learn about the ‘microbiome’ the more uses we find for ‘biotic substances’. First, we decoded the human genome, or the genes we are born with. Now, we know that the bacteria that live in out body have their own genes and ‘genome’, the so-called microbiome. Bacterial genetics can have a huge impact on our inborn genetics. Manipulating the microbiome and creating ‘post-biotics’ is the latest trend, with interesting outcomes so far. Eventually, targeted foods or nutrition supplements may help overcome bad bacteria such as Salmonella.
Vegan nutrition trends
Vegan is hot! Australian data on veganism is sketchy but show a rapid increase overall. So far, even fast-food chains are offering vegan burgers, topped with vegan cheese. Anything to stay on trend! The latest UK data shows a 600% increase in veganism over four years, with 84% being females. As a result, large supermarkets are gearing up with ever-expanding lines of animal-free nutrition products. We see the rise of plant-based protein sources. From rice/pea/hemp protein powders to pulse pasta, we can now get a great variety of protein, based on plant ingredients only.
Keto vs Paleo diet: trends compared
The Keto diet shows a popularity that keeps increasing, whereas the Paleo diet is on the decline, according to Google statistical search data. Keto diets, or low-carb, high fat, are not suitable for everyone, but remain a very popular way to manage weight. Carbs produce energy. By eating a low carb diet, the body turns to fat instead to produce energy. So-called Keto-bodies (alternative energy cells) are formed and help burn fat.
Carbs and fats: facts
Carbs and fats are a constant source of confusion for consumers who find it hard to understand the differences between good and bad sugars or fats. The fear of carbs can cause problems in itself: nutrient deficiencies can arise without intention. Sadly, even body image distortion can drive the no carb/low carb hype.
Simply put: the sweet taste of a fresh carrot is from its natural sugars, the sweet taste of a soft-drink comes from added sugars. We need some forms of carbs each day.
Fats can be good but they way we treat them (such as heating) can destroy the benefits. Some fats are downright bad, such as in fried foods. Often, fats found in so-called ‘health’ products are not ideal. So, always read the label and look for trans fat and saturated fat content.
The Keto diet requires will-power, knowledge about nutrition, and suitable foods. In today’s busy life, stores are aiming to cash in on the Keto trend by a rapid development in Keto foods, snacks and drinks.
Whatever you decide, always consult with a health practitioner before you attempt a new diet.
Make the right choice, make an appointment now
Ten tips for a great Christmas
It’s here, whether you like it or not… the race to Christmas has begun…
We know we’ll have a good time in the end, but the road to Christmas day is most likely paved with cobblestones. Loss of sanity and a painful credit card come to mind.
So, especially for you, Ten Golden Tips for a Merry, healthy and happy Christmas:
Tip One: Drink lots. Water that is. Keep alcohol intake within proportion. Be sure to make every other drink a glass of water. Good for the liver, no headaches and no regrettable events at the office party or family get-together!
Tip two: Moderation. Boring, but your body will be grateful. Enjoy all the marvellous food on the table, but have a little of each instead of lots. The brain takes around twenty minutes to register that we’re full. So, the chance of over-eating is a real thing. That’s is when you say…Ah, I wish I hadn’t eaten that last bit of pudding!
Tip three: Increase your vitamin C intake. Fresh fruits, salads, and stacks of colourful vegies will provide you with plenty, and you’ll need it. When we’re stressed and busy, we need adrenaline; it’s the ultimate stress hormone that the cave man used to tackle a bear. Your own adrenaline is pumping while you fight for a spot in the parking lot and battle the Christmas shop crowds. Vitamin C is superb at helping your adrenal glands. That way, you don’t burn out.
Tip Four: Take some B vitamins. Naturally present in almost all foods, B vitamins are unstable and affected by storage, age of food and cooking methods. Most B vitamins are lost or reduced in the process of paddock to plate. A good supplement will help.
Tip five: Relax! In modern-day life, we have lost the ability to relax when we have holidays. We’re so used to our social connections via our media devices, that, when we have time off, we don’t disconnect. It is good to stay in touch but put the devices down and walk in nature, play, and connect in real life. Magnesium can help relax our busy minds and tense muscles. Find it in nuts, seeds and whole grains, and in green leafy vegies such as salad varieties.
Tip six: Keep kids happy with sweet treats like pineapple, stawberries and water melon pieces on skewers, or bowls of cherries. Just as colourful as all the tempting lollies, but these are natural colours and sugars. Not only that, these foods are packed with important vitamins and antioxidants. Go on, you can be a child too, and have a face full of cherry juice!
Tip seven: Something that was never considered years ago, but is very important these days: Know your guests’ allergies, and make sure that there are alternatives. Some allergies can be deadly. Cross contamination can also cause problems for people who have intolerances, so keep nut -, gluten-, or dairy-free separated in different containers, and use different utensils.
Tip eight: Keep active. Go for walks daily, have a game of backyard cricket, or a swim. Whatever you do, be appropriately dressed and hydrated, and protect your skin with sunscreen.
Tip nine: Don’t test your limits on really hot days. Jogging at noon on a 38 -degree day may be some people’s form of training for endurance marathons, but if you don’t regularly do this, this can be detrimental to your health.
Tip ten: Enjoy whatever this holiday season may bring. Don’t sweat the small stuff, it’ll all be okay. Have a Merry Christmas and a great 2019!
PS: that credit card…I have no remedy for that:)
HRT, or Hormone Replacement Therapy has come under fire again. This ‘magic pill’ to stop those annoying hot flushes and reduce bone loss in menopausal women has been around for much longer than most people realise. The first experimental oral forms date back to the late 1930’s but in the sixties, after many concerns, new dosages were established, and further adapted over the years.
This time, research shows that it may increase the risk for breast and uterine cancer. In late 1999 there was a similar scare; it was concluded that HRT may play risk in heart attacks and blood clots. Of course, this creates a feeling of panic for women who have been prescribed HRT. It leaves them with the choice of stopping, and facing up to the symptoms of menopause again, or continue taking it, and being at possible risk. Hard decisions to make.
Menopause is regarded as a disease by the medical world. That’s why they have invented a pharmaceutical for it. In traditional cultures a menopausal woman is revered, and viewed as a woman of wisdom who deserves to be cherished. Often, these elders are the advice givers to the younger generation. Menopause is treated with herbs, ‘sweat lodges’, and local remedies and is accepted as a normal stage of life. This is the time where a woman can sit back and reflect on her years as a mother or worker, this is the time where she can have a rest from all her hard work during her life, and ‘smell the roses’.
However, in our modern Western world we have no time for hot flushes. Women of any age going through menopause are often still working and you can’t have hot flushes in your office or job. It’s embarrassing, inconvenient and frustrating. With women generally opting for having children at a later age it may well be that a woman is not only dealing with hot flushes but teenage temperaments too. Or she may be going through a divorce, be made redundant and so forth…life is not traditional anymore and the answer for many menopausal women is HRT. And now the worry about it.
Menopause is not a disease. It is a phase of life. It causes symptoms, just like any other age change. (Remember those pimples you had as a teenager?) The symptoms vary per woman, and natural treatments can help ease them or even totally eradicate them. Some women find relief with herbal ‘over-the-counter tablets sold in pharmacies and health food stores. Responses vary per woman. Why do the tablets that work for your friend not work for you? This is linked to many factors. Your genetics, whether you’ve had children, and how many, your diet, your weight, your general health…these are all influencing factors when it comes to determining what works.
To get the best possible help and the right products tailored to your specific needs and symptoms, invest in a consult. It will be worth it and give you an effective, safe and graceful solution to your menopausal issues. You’ll feel so much better for it, and you’ll work on long term health as well. Be smart, see a naturopath with special experience in the field: pick a mature aged female practitioner and you’re guaranteed to find a solution, compassion and support to help you ease through this time in a healthy and happy way.
Why is protein so important? It’s a wickedly fascinating food source that breaks down in the stomach into amino acids. You could compare it to building with Lego blocks. You take the construction apart, mix up the colours and build something new. The same applies to protein, and hey presto, these blocks find new partners and rebuild into new amino acids. The body uses these new blocks to perform important functions. The most important of these is the building of new cells for growth or maintenance. Our bodies are made to survive, so this is a function that is ‘built in by nature’. Survival, friends, it’s all about survival, otherwise we wouldn’t have been around for so long. The second task for those new amino acid building blocks (if there are enough of them, that is) is to maintain your immune system. Now that you think about it, isn’t it always that when you are tired and run down, you end up with a cold, the flu or worse? Were you eating well in the lead-up? No, possibly not… We catch up with ourselves at such moments.
Once our cell renewal program and our immune system have had their share of our protein intake, we may have some building blocks left to boost our mood. The brain runs on (amino acid based) stuff like dopamine (for good moods) and serotonin (calming). If our protein intake is low, over extended times, we can become deficient. Some of the amino acids are not available and our mood drops. Sometimes, the feeling of depression or anxiety can partly be the result of a deficiency in protein over time. It can even occur in those that take extra protein into their daily intake. In that case it’s getting burnt up faster than it can be processed, and all the building blocks are going to cell repair and renewal. This can happen with extreme workout programs. Balance is a big part of the protein picture. Balance in the amount and quality. Balance in knowing what our needs are, and how they can change per life stage. Making sure that you have good quality protein as part of every meal is essential to keep all three important functions going. Renewal, immune function and mood shaping, that’s the order of nature, even if it leaves us unhappy. So make sure you never pass on protein; it’s a superb hunger filler. Now you know why:)
The FDA (America’s Food and Drug Administration) sent another alarming message this month after discovering the breast cancer drug Tamoxifen in a number of ‘ extreme’ protein powders. These type of products are often used by body builders to enhance muscle growth. Tamoxifen prevents breast tissue growth , which ‘sort of’ explains the presence of that in an Extreme Muscle Builder. A weird sort of Man Boob prevention. Still, Tamoxifen is not a good thing for a male, or any body, unless needed for medical reasons.
It’s not just the extreme powders that put you at a health risk; at the opposite end a large number of weight loss products contain many dangerous ingredients such as L-citruline, sibutramine, and oxedrine. All these have proven links to serious conditions.
So people, please be mindful of what you put in your body. Check ingredients; if it sounds unfamiliar, look it up at reputable sites. That is not necessarily the sales site! Or call a practitioner who cares and knows!
Live happy, live healthy:)