What you think about — everything from the food you eat to the stress you experience — directly influences how your body responds. Even doing all the right things for your health may be undermined by simply thinking negatively about them. Positive thinking is a key component of optimism, and the good news is, optimism can be learned, practiced and bettered.
Many years ago, I was suggested to read a book by one of my cousins who is a psychologist, which I truly believe changed my life. The book was called Learned Optimism and was written by Dr Martin E. P. Seligman. The book explains how optimism can be learned and how you can use the three P’s do so. The 3 P’s are: Permanent, Pervasive and Positive. Learning to be more optimistic is habit change, and it needs to be practiced so.
Mindset underpins everything.
Positive thinking isn’t about burying your head in the sand and ignoring all of life’s challenges and...
The dietary supplement industry is a billion dollar industry. Supplements can provide you with a sense of security against a less-than-perfect diet, and make you feel like you are giving your body all that it needs. But the truth is, this reductionist approach to food doesn’t work because food is complex.
I get asked to sell supplements all the time! It gets annoying to say no all the time, but empowering; because I know I’m choosing decisions based on my beliefs. And my beliefs are backed by science. If the science was to say it’s beneficial and we should all be supplementing, I’d recommend it, but it doesn’t. Supplements don’t work for most people for a variety of reasons.
It’s not what we eat, it’s how we eat.
Food is much more than the nutrients it contains. When science began to identify and recognise the importance of the nutrients in the our food, the reductionist...
There is currently so many milk alternatives on the market. Soy, almond, cashew, macadamia, oat, rice, coconut, flax, hemp, and of course, the O.G… cow! There’s even such as thing as spider milk. It’s not on the market and you can’t buy it, but it is a thing. But what has just hit the market in the last couple of years is… PEA MILK!
Pea milk is a fantastic addition to the many milk alternatives. It’s vegan, nut free, soy free, lactose free and glucose free. These are some of the limitations of the other milk alternatives. It’s also better for the environment than other milk and has more protein and calcium than other alternatives.
Pea milk has a lower water and carbon footprint than cow’s milk and other milk alternatives such as rice and almond milk.
Pea milk is made by harvesting yellow peas and milling them into flour. The flour is then processed, separating the pea protein...
Over time, eating junk food can make you sick. The trans fats, sugars and preservatives added to food builds up and your body can’t function properly. But the other stuff in foods that can make you sick is bacteria. And this can be found in “healthy” food.
We might think we are the superior species on the planet. But there’s other competitors constantly vying for that title — viruses and bacteria. There could be as much as 100 trillion bacterial cells in your body — we only have 30 trillion human cells. We are more bacteria than we are human.
"We are comprised of approximately 3 times more bacterial cells than human cells."
Bacteria can be both good and bad. To keep the “bad” bacteria at bay, good food hygiene practices are essential. In these uncertain times, this is the reminder we all need. Just listen to any older person living on this planet right now.
Even healthy foods can make you sick and it’s...
Fasting has been a part of religious practice for thousands of years. But in the past five years, it received mainstream popularity on the back of animal studies showing that skipping meals had health benefits in those who are overweight.
I started intermittent fasting following the 16:8 method in 2017. After having changed my diet to eat less breads and pastas, and more protein, fat and vegetables in 2015, I couldn’t eat as often anymore. Plus, I wanted all the health benefits that proponents of fasting claimed — autophagy being the top of that list (You may know my crazy idea by now to live to 200 — or at least to live with the mindset that I will live to 200).
"While fasting has an array of benefits, it’s still what you eat that counts."
Autophagy is a metabolic process occurring in starvation whereby the body consumes its own cells. It’s an effective way to remove old and decrepit cells. Autophagy becomes less efficient as we age and...
We spend so much time, energy and money on food, shouldn’t we be enjoying it? Mindful eating is a strategy to be fully present with your senses during the process of eating in order to improve your relationship with food.
When doing research for this article, I discovered that this is pretty much what I do and have been encouraging you to do to reach your health goals, regardless of what they may be. Whether you want to lose weight, manage type 2 diabetes or improve athletic performance, mindful eating may be your nutritional answer.
Mindful eating is all about self-nurturing.
Mindful eating happens before, during and after you eat. It is about paying attention to how food looks, smells, tastes and feels. While it might sound tediously time-consuming taking your time chewing and savouring every single bite like a judge on Masterchef in slow-mo, mindful eating is a much more flexible approach to eating.
Pudding is synonymous with Christmas. But it is traditionally unhealthy and can unwrap your health goals quicker than my 4 kids opening presents from Santa on Christmas morning.
My grandmother has been making our family's traditional English Christmas pudding, as given to her by her mother-in-law, for as long as I can remember. But… I can’t eat it anymore because of the flour. So, I’ve taken her recipe and adapted it to be a gluten-free (and slightly healthier) version.
125g Mixed Peel
125g Blanched Almonds
12g Mixed Spice
250g Coconut Sugar
300g Coconut Flour
1/4 tsp Bicarb Soda (dissolved in 125ml of rum)
“I just watched The Game Changers Movie on Netflix, what do you think?” That is a question I have been asked a lot lately. It’s so common that it now makes me laugh when I open my messages and see this. My response is always the same So, here it is.
The Game Changes movie is great. It really gets you to think. It’s opened a conversation, which is a really good thing. If you haven’t seen the movie, The Games Changes movie is about going vegan. And there are a lot of compelling arguments.
If you ... eat more vegetables, you’re going to have an improvement in your health markers and performance.
My issue with the movie is that there are a lot of gaps in the research that are put forth. When you think critically about research, which you’re taught to do at university, especially in psychology, you see a lot of problems with the research referred to in the movie.
First of all, some of the athletes (and...
When you think of spiders, you probably don’t think of milk. But it turns out that some of these tiny little 8-legged arachnids are full of some pretty good stuff.
When I first came across the concept of spider milk, I wondered if there was some new alternative to almond milk on the market. Turns out there’s not. However, there is one species of spider producing some pretty potent nourishment for their young.
"I believe we can learn from other animals, even if just to reinforce the basics."
This species is the Toxeus Magnus found in South-East Asia, and their young grow exceptionally fast. They reach almost half adult size in their first 20 days of life. So researchers set out to discover how they achieved this.
Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Science put mother Toxeus Magnus’ under the microscope and gently squeezed their abdomen. They found they excreted a creamy white fluid similar to human milk.
Upon testing this milk, scientists discovered it contains...
The ability to exert self-control is considered a fundamental trait of people who are successful. It has been a long held view since Walter Mischel’s marshmallow experiments of the 1960s that people who can exercise self-control at will must possess some kind of super-power.
Self-control, or discipline as it is more commonly referred to by people who sense they lack it, is a learned skill. Like a muscle, self-control can be developed to essentially unlimited levels. But is a strong ability to exert self-control a good thing? New research suggests not.
"Developing your discipline muscle and practicing self-control is important. We should all do it. But we also need to know when to give it a rest and cut yourself some slack."
Most of our current understanding of self-control comes from the work of Walter Mischel’s marshmallow experiments of the 1960’s. I learnt about these experiments when I was studying psychology at university and, with...
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