How to Have More Energy, Clear Skin and Optimal Health This Holiday Period

energy
Image Unsplash

This is a post I wrote quite a while ago but I thought since we’re in the season where we can start to feel quite sluggish assisting your body to be more alkaline around this period can really help you feel a lot healthier and give you more energy.
I’m definitely starting to feel quite tired and haven’t been as healthy as usual so I’ll be starting a cleanse on the 2nd January to help give me a pick-me-up!

I will be doing the Dr Sandra Cabot  clean and lean 21 day detox which is available on my Inner Origin link here. This is a gentile cleanse consisting of lots of whole foods plus three powders a day that are full of lots of amazing super-foods and vitamins. If you’d like to join me on this detox email me chiamiablog@gmail.com and I can add you to the secret facebook page where you will have access to calls from Dr Cabot herself throughout January and also be in the running to win some prizes.

This detox will really help you feel vibrant and healthy and help balance your bodies alkaline levels. If you’re not sure what i’m talking about read on to find out all about Alkalising.

(ps.  This cleanse is also great to do any time of the year!)

Alkaline the PHacts 

Alkaline. That’s just something to do with batteries, right? That’s exactly what I used to think before I got into this whole health business shebang. I never realised that this word actually plays a HUGE part in the overall health and wellbeing of our bodies and is a major contributor to our body’s ability to heal itself.

Alkalising refers to balancing the pH (potential hydrogen) levels of the body. The ideal pH level of the human body should be around 7.35.  If this pH level is reached the body will be slightly more alkaline which means it will be in the best position to heal itself and fight disease. On the other hand, if the pH levels are lower, they will be more acidic leading to a body that is a breeding ground for disease, bad bacteria and cancer cells, as a result rendering the body unable to heal itself.  Most people who don’t regularly consume fruits or vegetables but often consume alcohol, coffee, soft drinks and processed foods, will be more prone to having low alkaline levels.

Good pH or alkaline levels are essential for good health.

Some health issues of a highly acidic body (low PH levels) include but are not limited to:

  • weight gain
  • upset stomach, poor digestion and bloating
  • killing off of good bacteria in the gut – so much of our mental and physical health is linked to our gut health
  • headaches
  • fatigue
  • trouble sleeping
  • bones are more prone to break and fracture
  • arthritis
  • teeth erosion
  • low immune system
  • decreases in the body’s ability to absorb minerals and other nutrients
  • decreases the body’s ability to detox and discard of heavy metals

How do you know your pH levels?

You can test your pH levels yourself using standard pH strips which are available from most health food stores or on an online store like iherb. Make sure you do a urine test though as testing your saliva can be quite inaccurate.

Food that cause more acidic pH levels:

  • red meat
  • eggs
  • soy – yep soy is not good for you, it wreaks havoc on your hormones and is a GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) food
  • canned fruit
  • dairy products
  • white grains such as rice and white bread
  • corn
  • processed foods
  • alcohol
  • caffeine
  • soft drinks
  • sugar
  • artificial sweeteners
  • fruit juice
  • stress
  • smoking
  • drugs/antibiotics

The 80/20 rule for creating an optimal pH balance

If your body is quite acidic and you want to restore it to a healthy pH level try eating 80% alkaline forming foods with 20% acid forming whole foods. This recipe is the perfect combo of acid and alkaline foods.

Now let’s get into the great benefits of having high alkaline levels in the body:

  • high energy levels
  • high performing immune system
  • less pain and inflammation within the body
  • quicker recovery from injury, this is why it is so important for athletes to have healthy alkaline levels.
  • glowing skin, healthy hair and nails
  • slows down the aging process
  • healthier teeth, bones and joints
  • lower cholesterol levels
  • better digestion

So what else you can do to raise the alkaline levels in your body? These are some of my tips:

  • Try a cleanse or Detox – if you are feeling quite sluggish a gentile cleanse may be exactly what you need.
  • Add more high alkaline foods into your diet each day. Here is a great detailed list of foods that are alkaline and acidic 
  • Drink chlorophyll – Chlorophyll is the green pigment found in plants and you can buy this in liquid form from most health food stores
  • Eat your veggies, especially greens, kale, spinach, broccoli, cucumber, celery. When you are eating kale, broccoli or spinach make sure you lightly steam them first as they can be very harsh on the stomach when eaten raw
  • Try adding a tablespoon of fermented vegetables to one or two meals each day. This will not only raise the pH levels in your body but fermented veggies are a great natural probiotic which equals a happy, healthy tummy
  • Start adding a fresh cold pressed green juice or a green smoothie to your diet every day or every couple of days. Here is a recipe for celebrity nutritionist Kimberly Snyder’s Glowing Green Smoothie. I have this every day and usually make a huge batch every Sunday enough to last me for a week. It will last in the fridge for about 2 days and I freeze the rest and just defrost it when needed
  • Drink hot water with half a lemon squeezed into it every morning – this may seem strange as lemon is an acidic fruit, however, once it enters the body it helps to balance the bodies pH levels and helps set up your digestion for the day
  • Try and drink around 2L of filtered water a day. You can also buy alkaline water or purchase an alkaline water filter which will help raise your pH levels even more. There are some great affordable alkaline water brands that you can usually find at your local health food or fruit shop. Putting some pink Himalayan salt and lemon in your water will help with raise the alkaline levels as well
  • Limit your sugar intake. There are many great tasting, healthy recipe alternatives to your favourite sugary treats out there that use natural sweeteners or a little bit of fruit to sweeten it. I have quite a few recipes like this on my blog.
  • Reduce stress by doing yoga, deep breathing or meditation as stress can cause the body’s acid levels to rise.

This may seem like a lot to take in and a lot to do all at once but try not to stress too much about it (don’t want to get your acidic levels rising) just try implementing one or two of these tips to start with and you will still notice an improvement in your health. The most important thing is to make sure you are adding fresh vegetables into your diet everyday and eating food closest to its natural form.

Hot Cross Buns – Gluten Free & Sugar Free

I posted this recipe a few years ago but I thought it’d be a great one to post again since we are approaching Easter and the tempting smell of hot cross buns are starting to fill the air. If you whip up a batch of these you won’t be tempted by the unhealthy versions and your body will be thanking you for it!

cross bun
These are really tasty and full of so much natural flavour! While they don’t have the consistency of traditional hot cross buns (they are a bit more dense and have more of a scone or muffin texture), they still taste darn good, so give them a try! These buns taste best on the day they are baked as they go a bit hard the next day. They will keep for a few days though and are delicious warmed up in the toaster with a bit of butter or coconut oil spread on them. Continue reading

Almond Nougat

nougat

This stuff is so delicious, honestly you’ll be addicted once you try it.
If you like things quite sweet you may want to add a bit more honey to the mixture, just give it a taste before you put the mixture into the tin.

Ingredients
250g cashew butter (here is a recipe to make your own)
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 tsp all spice Continue reading

Lemon Tahini Nougat

Lemon and tahini, two of my favourite things! Speaking of, my best friend Laura and I have started up a little blog called The LM Edit where we share photos of our favourite things and share a little bit about ourselves, we’d love you to check it out.

Now, back to the recipe.

Ingredients
200g Cashew Butter
100g Tahini
Juice of one lemon Continue reading

Afternoon Delight Smoothie

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This is one of my favourite smoothie combinations for an afternoon snack. It has a really nice thick consistency which I love. The turmeric adds a nice unusual flavour as well as added health benefits however, if you’re not a fan of the taste I’d leave the turmeric out. Continue reading

Grain free pizza pockets

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You may have heard of – or even cooked – cauliflower pizza bases, cauliflower rice or cauliflower couscous. The list has just expanded – now you can sink your teeth into these cauliflower pizza pockets! Continue reading

Sweet Tahini Slice

ImageSo I’m going to be honest and admit that this recipe was a total fluke, hence the dodgy photo. I went away this weekend with two friends, Meg from The wholesome Athlete and Steph from That Yoga Feeling. I didn’t have much time to make a snack for us, so I chucked the below ingredients into a food processor and hoped for the best. Turns out these ingredients taste damn good together, needless to say the whole slice was gobbled up very quickly.  Continue reading

Zucchini, Walnut and Oat Brownies

brownie

I know, I know, zucchini sounds like a weird thing to put in brownies, but trust me, you can’t taste it and they give the brownies a really great moist texture. Plus as an added bonus it’s a great way to get some extra veggies into you or trick your kids into eating them.

Ingredients

½ cup cacao powder
½ cup oats
1 tsp baking powder
¼ – ½ cup honey or maple syrup (depends how sweet you want it)
¼ cup coconut oil
2 eggs, whisked
1 tsp of natural vanilla essence
2 small or 1 large zucchini, finely grated
¾ cup walnuts

Method

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

In a large mixing bowl combine the cacao, oats and baking powder. In a separate bowl whisk together the honey, oil, eggs, vanilla and zucchini. Pour this mixture onto the dry ingredients, folding it through until well combined. Add the walnuts and stir through.

Take a greased or lined baking dish (I used a bread dish which was the perfect size), pour the mixture into the dish and sprinkle with extra walnuts if you wish.
Pop it in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until a fork comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool for at least 30 minutes before removing from the tin. Once removed, place on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes then cut into squares and serve.