Why do so many diets fail?

Vice vs Virtue: Is reaching a compromise the best way to eat?

I am a serial dieter. In fact, I have even been a cereal dieter after being momentarily swept up in the “Special K 2 week challenge” marketing campaign. Despite the regime - Weight Watchers, Cabbage Soup, South Beach, 4 hour body, high carb, low carb and no carb - the one common thread is that I haven't managed to stick to any of them. The motions tend go from motivated to demotivated to deprived to depressed to full of pizza.

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Pickles

Make your own Pickles

"Fermenting food is a lost art – a practice used to keep the digestive and immune systems healthy, as the digestive system makes up 70% of the body’s entire immune system. A healthy balance of good and bad bacteria needs to be maintained for optimal health. The gut is known as the second brain and contains more neurotransmitters than the brain itself.

Diet plays a key role in keeping the gut healthy, and fermented foods are the perfect way to replenish healthy gut bacteria as they provide the body with natural probiotics. Traditional cultures from the beginning of time have all had fermented foods, even though they may not have understood their role in the body. There were no refrigerators so fermenting food was a wonderful way to preserve food as well as provide healing properties to the body. The process enhances nutrient content with beneficial microbes and enzymes, and valuable vitamin K2 is provided to the body, which may prevent heart disease and osteoporosis.

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Glorious Garlic

Glorious Garlic

An anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-viral powerhouse, full of vitamins and minerals, Garlic is a readily available ingredient that can help with a huge range of ailments from Asthma to Heart disease.

It is available in 5 different forms though the most effective antibiotic preparation is to crush fresh garlic at room temperature and wait for ±15 minutes, when the active ingredients are at their strongest.

Here's why garlic is so important, the best ways to use it and (importantly) what to do about the resulting breath :)

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Aspartame: A sweet dose of chemicals

Aspartame should leave a bitter taste in your mouth

Long-touted as the perfect sugar-replacement for the calorie-conscious, aspartame has been widely used across the globe for decades. The Beverage Institute (yes, the "health-based" resource run by Coca Cola Company who has a vested interest in the success of aspartame and "diet" drinks) lists the additive as a safe, low calorie, weight management alternative.

But, from the perspective of anyone who doesn't stand to make billions off of aspartame's success, is the super sweet sugar-replacement really good for us? Through odd discovery, flawed research and heavily contested approval by the FDA, Aspartame has managed to stay on the shelves to the detriment of the consumer.

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Thai Beef Salad

Thai Beef Salad

Having salad for dinner can often leave you feeling a little cheated out of a meal with connotations of preppy cheerleaders pushing an olive around a plate whilst trying to work out the calories of a leaf.

Not this salad. Now THIS is a meal.

We tweaked it a little according to a Jamie Oliver recipe in that we used the dressing as a marinade for the steak (then cooked it up after as a sauce) and we added some toasted almond slices for some crunch. Very tasty and very filling.

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Broccoli 3 Ways: Salad, Soup and Roast

Broccoli 3 Ways: Salad, Soup and Roast

Broccoli is often the source of children's nightmares and who can blame them? How many of us grew up with poor old broccoli, boiled to greying, slopped as a watery mass on a plate?

It's considered a superfood and touted to help with ailments ranging from high blood pressure and diabetes to heart disease and even cancer. It contains nutrients such as folate, soluble and insoluble fibre, vitamins C and A, and calcium, which are needed for numerous functions in the body.

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Spinach 3 Ways

Spinach for Breakfast?

Three unusual but tasty ways to integrate spinach into your morning meal. Why would you want to up your spinach intake? Dark leafy greens like spinach are important for skin and hair, bone health, and provide protein, iron, vitamins and minerals. Spinach has also been linked to improving blood glucose control in diabetics, lowering the risk of cancer, lowering blood pressure, improving bone health, lowering the risk of developing asthma and more.

Spinach is great if you have an iron deficiency and, as Popeye showed us, makes us big and strong sailors ;)

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The Cholesterol Myth

The Cholesterol Myth

Decades ago, no one was stressing about their cholesterol count, comparing their numbers at the water cooler, taking constant prescription meds to ward off it off and yet, the levels of heart disease and stroke were significantly lower. 

Why? Perhaps cholesterol isn't the prolific serial killer its been made out to be. Most people that claim "cholesterol" issues don't fully understand really what cholesterol does in our systems.

Let's be clear, cholesterol is VITAL to your body. It helps to produce cell membranes, hormones, vitamin D and bile acids that help digestion (to name a few). You really don't want to be stripping and lowering levels of this substance so critical to your good health.

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Friday Recipes

Almonds 3-ways

Almond milk is super expensive but you can make it yourself really easily and use the leftover pulp to make almond flour, almond "cheese" or almond hummus. In the recipes where they mention straining the mixture - muslin or cheesecloth is ideal.

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Fats don't make you fat - Carbs do

Fats don't make you fat - Carbs do

Yes, we may be harping on a little here but after 30 years of misinformation, we need to keep beating this drum - fat is not the enemy. (Saturated fat, that is. Trans fats really, really are an enemy!)

We owe fat's poor reputation to a single scientist, a fellow called Ancel Keys, who put forward the lipid hypothesis i.e saturated fat causes higher cholesterol which causes clogged arteries and heart disease. We've all heard this theory, right? And most of us have lived our lives very strictly to avoid that chain of events. Yet nations are getting fatter and obesity and related diseases are far more prevalent. How?

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