Category Archives: Health

With ❤ from Italy 🇮🇹 My favorite holiday tips. 

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Morning yoga at the lake 🙏🏻

Morning yoga at the lake 🙏🏻


Being on holiday can often be challenging when it comes to keeping up a healthy lifestyle. I remember in the past I often fell into that “Whatever, I’m in holiday!” trap and got unhappy halfway through cause I didn’t feel comfortable in my body anymore. Of course it’s tempting to have all kinds of sweet goodies in the breakfast cafe, luscious gelato and crisps which are served complementary at aperitivo time. And I’m not saying don’t have any of it! Come on, you are still on holiday!! But chose your goodies wisely.. and always remember: to crowd in some good stuff and reduce the “bad” stuff will always help to keep some balance. Here some of my favorite holiday tips:

Fresh & easy afternoon snack at the camping site at Lago di Garda 🇮🇹😋🌱

Fresh & easy afternoon snack at the camping site at Lago di Garda 🇮🇹😋🌱

💦 First and foremost, always keep lots of water nearby. Get some lemons and cucumber, some bottles of still and some sparkling water and keep yourself hydrated all day long with style. Always order water as well if you have alcoholic beverages. 
☕️Take your time. Especially with breakfast buffets it can be so easy and seducing to overeat. Start with choosing fresh stuff like fruit and veggies if available. If not, sneak in a cucumber and a nectarine for example. No one will care! Take a small plate instead of a large plate and arrange it nicely. If you really want more you can always go back! Again, add lots of fluids. Water, herbal teas, fresh OJ and if you feel like a cappuccino – go get one. But enjoy it consciously and as a treat and not as your only choice of beverage and have 3 instead. 

🍅 Eat out twice instead of 3 times a day. Who needs a lunch if you had a late and filling breakfast? Wait until you’re hungry again in the afternoon and then get yourself a healthy snack like on this pic. Some fresh tomatoes and cucumber, olives, a bit of local cheese, some fresh herbs with some wonderful EVOO and flower pepper. 

🌱For eating out at night always remember to add healthy bits and pieces to your meal. Wonderful fresh mixed salads, or sides of spinach or grilled vegetables with some fresh fish or a small plate of pasta. Fresh berries for desert make a wonderful end to a meal. Another nice alternative is always to share courses. I’m always really into starters and will never say no to a bite or two of desert. But we don’t really need to eat the full thing, so why not share them between you? 

🙏🏻 Lastly, try to add some movement into your (holi)day. Even if it’s nice to just be lazy and relax, just a bit of exercise makes you enjoy resting even more. Chose your favorite kind of movement. For me it’s yoga, for others it’s running or swimming. Rent yourself a bicycle instead of a car. All these things you can do anywhere and anytime. 

Hope one or the other tip was helpful for you and inspired you a bit! Your belly, your sleep and your overall feeling of wellbeing will be so much better, I promise. At least it works for me ☺️👌🏼❤🙏🏻
Lots of love from bella Italia & enjoy your summer and your holidays  🇮🇹

Nadine xx 

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This is it! I’m now officially a certified Holistic Health Coach for Integrative Nutrition

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It’s graduation time for me and my fellow students at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition! 
An amazing year comes to an end and I’ve gained so much more than just more knowledge about nutrition 🙂 Want to find out what a Holistic Health Coach really does and what my main learnings were during that year? Check out this vlog and please reach out to me if you have any questions!

I am just starting with vlogs so if you like it, give me a thumbs up or leave me some feedback and you’ll brighten up my day ☀️☀️☀️
Love, sunshine & healthy food 🌱

Nadine xx

P.S. If it got you inspired or you’d like to find out more about my Holistic Health Coaching services – shoot me a PM! Otherwise just enjoy the video and let me know how you like it. Again, your feedback means the world to me ❤

Hibiskus Flower Ice Tea

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New vlog is out!! Whoowhoo!!

Wanna learn how to make a super simple & delicious ice tea instead of the shop bought version which are loaded with refined sugars??

This is a yummy and refreshing ice tea recipe which you can make with Hibiskus flower or Raspberry leave tea, shared with some practical and simple health tips for your own and your family’s health. This video also contains some helpful tips for pregnant ladies ☺️🙌🏼

You can also keep the Hibiskus flowers & jazz up the ice tea with some bubbles >>> Hibiskus Flower Mimosas- doesn’t that sound awesome??!!

Hope you enjoy it!
❤ N

P.S. If this video caught your interest and you’d like to learn more about what I do, check out the About Section on my blog and/ or follow me on Facebook or Instagram. Every like/ comment/ message / share makes my day a little brighter ❤

1st Vlog! Green Superfood Smoothie with Kale & Pear

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Super excited to show you my first Vlog ever!!! 😆🤗😛

I’ve been thinking about it countless time and never done one but this weekend, without any preparation, I just thought I give it a shot and this is the result.. so please have mercy with me hehe..

Hope you like it!!! It was actually really fun making it 😍
Look forward to hearing your feedback!!

Love,
N xxx

If I sparked your interest about Holistic Health Coaching I’d love to hear from you so we can talk! Drop me a line on nadisunshine@me.com to arrange a free 50min Health History Consultation either in person or via Skype/ Facetime/ on the phone ❤

If you are interested in our upcoming Mindful Birth workshop in Malta on 24 June 2017 please check out our Mindful Mum Facebook page for further info.

 

Zoe’s box – OR: Why we love organic food

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All toddler mums know how hard it is sometimes to make sure that your young and old beloved ones as well as yourself get three healthy meals a day. In between sniffles, theething, working or like in my case studying, constantly alternating culinary preferences and tidying up the mess of a little tornado several times a day, moments of inspiration come often too short, while standards are rising to ensure good health through good food to our little darlings!

What I have experienced since I’ve become a mum is that time has gotten more precious than ever. I am simply neither able nor willing anymore to spend hours and hours in the kitchen like I used to do back in the days in my childless free time evenings with wine, music and often friends. Nowadays, when Zoe is in bed, evenings are sacred time for talking to my hubby, resting and recharging batteries thus nowadays our meals got simpler and less time consuming. What has never changed though is my deep belief into the quality of food, even more so since I started studying to become a Holistic Health Coach for Integrative Nutrition. The saying “You are what you eat” is definitely true, and what we don’t want, neither for us nor our children, are nasty pesticides, herbicides, toxins, preservatives or additives in our bodies. And no, EU regulations about allowed pesticide levels are sadly not protecting you enough (read the recent article One in every five vegetables contains illegal amounts of pesticide if you haven’t done so yet). Next to clean air, water, cosmetics and cleaning products, food is one of the biggest sources of what our bodies absorb, so we better be aware and take good care of what we put on and inside ourselves.

zoe-greens

She has no clue how happy it makes me to see her eating green stuff!

Buying organic has therefore become second nature for us. It’s the cleanest produce we can get and allows me to put my anyway constantly worrying mummy-mind at rest. As some of you know from my Instagram and Facebook Feed, Farmer’s Deli Malta, amongst others, is one of our favorite suppliers for organic produce. They offer a wide variety of local and Sicilian vegetables and fruits, herbs and free range eggs but also a great range of other organic products from small suppliers who run small and sustainable businesses. Their greatest asset: they know every producer in person and have a relationship with them. This builds trust, also for us as consumers. Ordering works easy peasy via their website/ per email and the only thing you have to do after is waiting eagerly for the delivery of your box. When it arrives, we know our weekly fix of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants is sorted. Be aware to keep your diet’s majority with fresh fruit and veg, add your proteins via legumes and/ or organic dairy and meat if that’s part of your diet, chose whole grains or wholemeal products for your carb intake and don’t forget your healthy fats, plenty of water and of course and most importantly, vitamin L(ove) ❤

But now, let’s have a look into Zoe’s box, which contains a lovely range of many of the yummy and gorgeous products which have become dear to us over the last months and a little inspiration what to cook with them.

zoes-box

Don’t you just love surrounding yourself with things which are good for you?

Vegetables, like delicious, creamy avocados, sweet carrots, fennel, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, aubergines, jerusalem artichokes, chard, brussel sprouts, leek, pumpkin and more. The saying “Eat a rainbow” is particularly true when it comes to vegetables. The more colours you incorporate on a regular basis, the more variety of vitamins you can ensure you receive. Zoe just loves digging into a soft avocado, often mixed into a nice salad with juicy tomatoes and a tangy dressing of freshly squeezed lemon juice and olive oil. Another great staple dish is a simple veggie gratin e.g. potato with fennel and jerusalem artichokes (but it works with any veg, just play around). Just slice all veg in thin slices, put them in a baking dish with some cream (we usually use a vegan alternative like rice or oat cream), some grassfed butter, nutmeg, herbs of your liking and a hint of Himalayan salt and pepper and then bake it for about 60min. If you like you can add breadcrumbs and/ or organic cheese, nuts or seeds on top for the last 15min. Fresh aubergines make a lovely parmeggiana bake  and carrots and/or pumpkin are great additions for one of Zoe’s favorite lentil stews which I’ll describe further down.

Fruit, like wonderful seasonal winter citrus like lemons, mandarines, oranges and blood oranges. Citrus fruit provides tons of vitamin C and is particularly great to strengthen our immune systems in the winter months when most bugs are around. Great fact to know: foods rich in vitamin C also help our bodies to absorb iron rich foods! Zoe loves her sweet mandarines as a snack, little pieces of blood orange and its juice for her porridge or chia pudding in the morning. Lemon juice is simply amazing in dressings, e.g. over steamed chard, broccoli or spinach but also for immune and metabolism boosting lemon water in the morning (for Zoe with a hint of great quality honey 🙂

Legumes, which provide most of Zoe’s protein/ iron intake. If you want to reduce your meat consumption, legumes and beans are great plant based alternatives. Lentil stew with red lentils, cumin and different veggies is one of Zoe’s favorite dishes (you can find our recipe here) or you can make a great warm lentil salad with brown or black lentils, cumin, coriander and roasted carrots or pumpkin. Chickpeas (Farmer’s Deli even has black ones sometimes!) are a great staple for homemade hummus or curries which we like to make with lots of different veg, mustard seeds, turmeric, curry powder and coconut milk.

zoe-avo-lover

Nope mummy, I am not sharing my avocado with you!

So yes, like sceptics say, going organic may be a bit pricier, but in my opinion it’s so worth it. It puts my mind at rest to get the best quality with highest levels of nutrients without all the toxic nasties, it supports sustainable and nature friendly farming, and on top of that it never gets boring as constantly changing seasonal produce excites culinary creativity and makes me try new things.

Until next time lots of sunshine, love & healthy food
Nadine & Zoe aka avocado queen 😉

 

P. S. If you feel like you need some support improving your own or your family’s life to a healthier lifestyle, feel free to get in touch for a first free Health History consultation!

Empty plate, happy mama 😍

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Zoe eating one of her favorite dishes, barley pilaf with butternut & some homemade pesto.

Becoming a mum and feeding my little daughter really changed my relationship with cooking and food. Healthy eating has been important to me for many years but cooking for a toddler is a different story. Feeding a 1,5 year old can sometimes be very frustrating, especially if you make the best, clean and healthy ingredients as well as cooking up a nice meal a point. It can be very depressing if you spend lots of love and thought into nice meals and they don’t like it or just don’t feel like eating because of whatever reason. Especially evenings can be challenging sometimes.

What I learned from all these challenging situations is:

✔️Lower my own expectations (sometimes sadly but truly just pasta with butter and Parmesan works),

✔️Don’t be too hard on myself (it’s ok to want to play more and cook less and therefor make meals easier and simpler)

✔️It’s ok to get help (be it by our lovely babysitter, family when they visit, healthy places to eat out or the occasional take away like sushi etc)

✔️Moderation is key, so if the majority of my daughter’s diet is great, wholesome and healthy why not also let her little tastebuds explore the occasional “nasty” exception just like I have it myself (e.g. A nice piece of cake or ice cream)

✔️Keep cool, mindful and don’t stress out. Having a mess, lots of leftovers and no more enthusiasm for the rest of the evening is ok. Bring her to bed (she won’t starve!) and then enjoy a big glass of wine and your favorite TV series.

✔️ Timing is key. Giving Zoe dinner by 6pm somehow catches her in a better mood and if it’s paired with a phase where she has good appetite she is actually even demanding food with a vigorous Nam Nam and eats like a very cute little horse 🐴 😜❤😍

I want my daughter to develop a healthy relationship with food. And, I want to keep my own healthy relationship with food and my sanity. So if it means less fancy, less time effort and more simplicity while still eating a clean and wholesome diet for most of the time, so be it ❤ Walk the talk – one of the big things I learned during my course with Integrative Nutrition to become a Holistic Health Coach. Amen to that 🙏🏻😉

Maybe one or the other mum can relate to all this and find something helpful or comforting in this post. This all might sound really obvious to many but to me it’s a big deal to let go off all my own expectations and pressure I sometimes put on myself 😜

With all this in mind I wish you a pleasant and relaxed eve!

Love,

N xxx

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Life with my 16 months old toddler & a lovely Lentil Stew

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A few days ago, our little sunshine turned 16 months. 16 incredible months full of surprises, laughs, first times, clueless moments, love bursts, – sometimes exhausted and tired but always happy and grateful ❤

By now our mouse call us Mama, Papa, says Brumm Brumm, toddles around the living room (still holding on cupboards, sofas and chairs, she’s a careful one!), leaves a trail of mess where ever she goes, gives kisses, loves her softies with a passion and loves reading one of her many books on her blue sofa. She’s super chilled, sometimes a bit clingy, but always smiley and happy and she sleeps like a pro (there’s no day where I’m not grateful that I went through that sleep training with Daniela Sleep Coach last September).

My daily inspiration when I feel things are getting too much

Desiderata has been hanging in our bathroom door for many years.. it’s still my inspiration, especially when I feel things are getting too much..

Life has changed tremendously by becoming a mum and so have I…  I’ve never been so content and grateful but sometimes also exhausted and overwhelmed. Being a mum put my life upside down and living in another country away from our families doesn’t make it easier.  But I love it and wouldn’t change it for a thing, even if it sometimes means putting my own plans, ambitions and goals on a lower priority. Simply because I am not able to do everything at the same time anymore. My multi tasking skills seem to have disappeared when I gave birth and I slowly surrender to the fact that they might not come back anymore 😉 My first priority is Zoe and our family, then comes nothing for a while and only then comes my course to become a Holistic Health Coach which I still enjoy doing very much (just finished my second exam last weekend – whoowhoo!). It’s a fine line though sometimes to juggle everything and I often wonder how working mums are coping, or, even more challenging, single mums handle their daily life with a 16 month old toddler who becomes more lively and demanding every day! I honestly have no clue but my deepest respect goes out to all these women as well as the stay at home mums (and dads) like me, cause being with a child all day is often more exhausting than a work day might ever be LOL.

time for more self love

One of my 2017 resolutions: Time for more self care & self love this year. Carve out some time in the morning for some yoga home practice.

However, priorities shift and so finally do my expectations towards myself. I try to find peace and to let go more often… More surrender and self love, less pressure and comparison are my big resolutions this year. How often did I feel under pressure the last few months when I felt I’m running out of time, I could never keep up, when I didn’t manage to do everything I wanted, didn’t cook all the lovely meals which I’d love to cook, write all the blog posts which I have in my head and start with all the new projects which I have in my head.. but at the end of the day, we only have 24hours a day and when I spend time Zoe I want to be present and enjoy the moment. So, this is the time in my life for her. And there will be a time for other things again, probably sooner than I can now imagine she’ll be in school and I’ll remember these days with nostalgia ❤ So please accept my apologies for not blogging that regularly anymore! But I promise I will still share the occasional recipe and keep you posted with (hopefully) inspiring healthy meals and articles on wellness and health via my Facebook and Instagram 🙂 In the end this, my passion for healthy food, is what inspired me to start my Health Coaching course!

But enough for now, here comes another, of course toddler approved favorite recipe for a Lentil Stew. Zoe has been eating it since she was about 9 months and love it just as much as her daddy and I do. Lentils are a great source of plant protein, great for digestion and especially in winter a real comfort food. I usually cook the same dish for all of us and only add salt for us adults in the end. As usually this is a very versatile recipe, instead of red lentils you can also use brown lentils or a nice mix of beans and lentils. Just note that you should soak all other lentils (brown, green) and beans over night as they might cause bloating and gas otherwise. The longer you soak them, the better. It’s also beneficial to add some bay leaf for the same reasons. Also, please note that cooking time is the shortest with red lentils so if you are tight on time, just go for red lentils. You can add all different kinds of veg, but I usually like the potatoes to add some carbs and substance to the stew. Leafy greens like spinach, kale or chard can be added towards the end of the cooking time and if you want to give it even more substance serve it with a batch of nicely roasted potatoes as a topping like I did on the photo.

Lentil Stew with Roast Potatoes & fresh lime

lentilstew

Lentil Stew is a real crowd pleaser and great for batch cooking

What you need
(serves 4)

  • 3 cups of red lentils (washed) or other lentils and beans (soaked over night)
  • 1 onion
  • Some garlic
  • 1 TBS of Coconut Oil
  • 2 potatoes
  • 2 carrots
  • Ground cumin & coriander (about 1 tsp each)
  • Vegetable stock (invest in a good, low sodium one, without preservatives and other nasties)
  • Water (roughly the double amount of legumes and maybe later some more depending on how thick you want your stew)
  • 1 lemon or lime
  • Optional: 1-2 handfuls of leafy greens (spinach, chard, kale)
  • Highest quality salt (if you cook for children add it separately later)

Optional toppings: roast potatoes, fresh cilantro

What to do…

Peel and chop the onions, garlic, potatoes and carrots (or other veg you use). Fry onions and garlic on medium heat in coconut oil and add the chopped vegetables when they get nicely golden. Stir for a bit and then add the lentils (or other pre-soaked legumes) and spices. Pour in the water and some vegetable stock and let it simmer until the lentils get nice and soft. Red lentils take about 30min, other lentils and legumes more. Just let it simmer until it’s all nice and soft, you never want to eat legumes when they are not fully cooked. If you add leafy greens, add them for about 5-10min in the end.

Serve with a slice of lime/ lemon and enjoy your meal together:)

With lots of love, peace & good health for 2017 ❤
Nadine xxx