Saturday, 31 March 2012

RECIPE - Coconut ice cream






We love coconuts!!! Coconuts are the most amazing food! They have alot of oil in them but its all good... the oil actually has fat burning properties! It would have to be one of the healthiest fats around. This is because, the saturated fats present in coconut are medium chain fatty acids which get broken down quickly in the liver and are utilized as body fuel instead of being stored up as “fat”. Most other oils, including hydrogenated vegetable oil, are have fats present as long chain fatty acids which are absorbed by the fatty tissues of the cells and contribute to weigh gain and obesity. So thats why coconut oil is shouted out as the low-calorie non-fattening oil.
Coconut water is full of electrolytes... meaning that it will hydrate your thirst quenching body from the minute it enters your mouth. It is said you be 4 times better thirst quenching than water alone... This is why it is known as a great hang over cure. And it tastes so good!!!!


I was lucky enough to be left with heaps of coconut flesh and coconut water after the party so I put my mind to it and have come up with some yummy coconut ice cream... so easy, so yummy and soooooooo good for you! 


TRY IT!

What you need:

5 cups coconut flesh
2 cups coconut water
1 vanilla bean
3 tbls raw organic honey


Method:

  1. Put everything in a high speed food processor or blender like a vita-mix. Dont forget to scrape vanilla bean in.
  2. Wizz until smooth
  3. Pour into an air tight container
  4. Put lid on and put in the freezer until firm
  5. Serve in bowls with your choice of topping. For example; almonds, blueberries, etc.








RECIPE - Whole food Pina Colada





Ok, so everyone has been asking me what was is our famous cocktails we were drinking in the coconuts at the launch party... Well they were the Choose life. Live it. Do it! whole-food pina coladas = A-MAZING!

We know that alcohol isn't great for us all the time but you have to admit; we all deserve a cocktail every now and then...

You have to try this!

What you need:

3 cups of fresh coconut water
2 cups fresh coconut flesh
half a pineapple
1 vanilla bean
1 banana
1 cup of white rum (optional)

What to do:

Throw everything in a high speed food processor or blender like a vita-mix and wizz until smooth... 
Pour mixture back into the empty coconuts with a straw for the island look! 
ENJOY!!!

Serves 6







Friday, 30 March 2012

Choose life. Live it. Do it. Launch!


WOW! People are so nice! The last couple of weeks have been absolutely crazy leading up to our little launch party for CHOOSE LIFE! LIVE IT! DO IT! It was the ultimate girls night in with natural organic spray tans from COAST ORGANIC tanning, raw chocolate cake from Georgia at Stirring change, goodie bags full of some great samples and discounts from some amazing local businesses, coconut cocktails, Yummy healthy vegetarian food, and the most amazing part of the night was a talk on general nutrition and digestive health from the inspirational naturopath; Layla Metcalf from My Goodness Wellbeing... It was such a fun night! I loved sharing my passion and new products with the girls!


Each lovely lady walked away with an amazing prize and a great goodie bag full of samples and some very generous discounts from local businesses. I was overwhelmed with how generous people were and I want to shout out the biggest thank you to all of these great businesses for helping to make our launch such a success!! 

A big THANK YOU to;

WOTNOT naturals
Pure and Green organics
CocoCUT
 Stirring Change
T.O.M organics
Sanctum
Eco Tan

Here are a few photo's from the night... ENJOY!






Chatting digestive health...


Layla passing out the zinc tests to check who is deficient... I think most of us need to start on a zinc supplement...



Checking out some of the great prizes...


CHOOSE LIFE! LIVE IT! DO IT!!!!!!!

Saturday, 17 March 2012

I BREAST FEED MY TODDLER AND I'M PROUD OF IT!

Image from "Grown ups" movie


I have been um-ing and arr-ing about writing this post as I don't want to offend anyone! I am a strong believer that know one should be judged and that its every mothers decision of how they choose to parent.

I CHOSE to breast feed my baby! Its a funny thing to say that "I chose'" as it is what our bodies are made to do so I don't like that mums can now choose. I understand that there are many reasons why women cant breast feed and that is why formula was created. I believe it was created to feed the babies that couldn't be fed. I also believe that if you can do it, then DO IT! Its so good for you baby and no formula could ever compare as formula is made in a lab to attempt to replicate the good stuff so why not just use the good stuff?
Now I'm not saying its easy... I am the first one to say that it is freaking hard work! When I was pregnant I never doubted that I would be able to breast feed. My mum did it... my mums mum did it... why couldn't I do it? Well, when my little girl was born her mouth was small and. well, my feeding machines was enormous and I suffered from everything from 6 bouts of mastitis, severely cracked nipples, lots of bleeding, it was terrible and this went on for months! I tried lanolin, nipple shields, I was expressing every second feed to give them a break, I was alternating sides, I was attending classes... I tried absolutely everything and nothing was working... I was in tears almost every time I fed. Anyone I spoke to about it kept telling me; "its ok to quit Cass". To me; it wasn't ok to quit! Well I'm not a quitter and when I want something I will not stop until I get there. What kept me going was that I had so much milk and I didn't want it to go to waste when their is just so much good I could give my baby. I think I got there at 7 months... And gosh it was a hard 7 months but when I got there there was no way I was stopping.

I think the average time that mums begin to let go of breast-feeding is around 6 - 9 months where mums are feeling tired and over it and want their boobs back. Babies start getting hungrier around this time and it gets harder to feed them but what mums don't realise is that when you get past that hard part and your milk catches up again it becomes easier than before. I always said if I got to 1 year I would be happy and then I hit one year and thought why stop now?

So lately the talk has been about milk... how many milk feeds are our toddlers having? When are they having them?  After or before meals? How much are they drinking? etc, etc...
When I mention that I am still breast feeding the shock faces set in; "REALLY? ARE YOU? WHY?"
My reply is usually; "why not? Its just easy."Or "It was so hard to get it, now I've got it why would  I want to stop?" or "I am thinking I will just keep going so I have milk for the next baby"... haha.
I am proud to be breast feeding my 15 month old!!!! Look I am not the mum that wips out her breast at a cafe or has a self serve milk bar. I take my hat off to those mums that have that confidence. We have set rules from the start as I have such an aggressive feeder it just doesn't happen out now. We feed once or twice a day at home and we are happy with that.

So why is it so weird? Why do we breast feeding mums feel like we need to defend ourselves? I hate the stigma that goes with breast feeding a toddler when its such a natural thing.

Why am I 'STILL' breast feeding?


  • Breast milk is incredible! Breast milk contains some amazing immune boosting qualities! It is so cool that if a mother gets sick they will produce antibodies against that bug so that the baby doesn't get sick too! That is truly AMAZING!
  • World health organisation recommend breast feeding until 2 years old.
  • I still have milk!
  • I would rather not move onto cows milk. For most, cows milk is the next step but I am not completely convinced that this is a good idea. I know that everyone is loving that you can now buy organic, unhomoginised cows milk... But its still pasturised which means it is flash heated and that is the issue that I have. A study was done by Weston A Price a long time ago with cats and pasturised milk. Groups of cats were analyzed. The group of cats that were fed pasturised milk were led to disease, birth defects and ended up infertile through the generations. I feel that that is happening in todays society; infertility. So I just cant bring myself to feed my baby pasturised milk as a staple food.

So my point is; don't be shy to say you are a breast feeding mum! You are doing the absolute best for your baby! ... Know what you are doing, what you choose to do is right! If you a breast feeding mum... YOU ARE A CHAMPION!  BE PROUD! 

CHOOSE LIFE! LIVE IT! DO IT!


Wednesday, 14 March 2012

RECIPE - ALMOND MILK

A friend of mine is beginning a road of dairy free living and is nervous at the thought of not being able to have some milk everyday... As most of you know there are many great alternatives to cows milk; including rice milk and nut milks... the list could go on. 
My favourite is almond milk. This is because it is so good for you and super easy to make. I have given you a recipe below... TRY IT OUT!




The low down on almonds:




  • Almonds are one of the most nutritious nuts.
  • Almonds are full of many protective nutrients including calcium and magnesium for strong bones
  • Contains Vitamin E and compounds called phytochemicals, which may help protect against cardiovascular disease and even cancer. 
  • Folic acid which is super important during pregnancy.
  • Important minerals; phosphorus and zinc.
  • Almonds are also packed with protein. 
  • Lots of healthy fiber. 
  • Low in saturated fat 

ALMOND MILK 

What you will need
  • High power blender (check out the VITAMIX on our products page)
  • 1 cup of almonds (organic is possible)
  • 4 cups of filtered water
  • nut milk bag (If you dont have one of these we stock them so please visit our products page or send me an email cassmichelin@gmail.com to purchase)
  • bowl or jug to drain milk into.















Method
  1. Put 1 cup of almonds in a bowl and cover with water. Soak overnight.
  2. In the morning drain almonds and put the soaked almonds in your blender with 4 cups of filtered water.
  3. Blend on high speed for a minute or until the almonds and water look like a milk shake.
  4. Poor mixture through the nut milk bag to drain almond pulp. Squeeze nut milk bag to get as much of the milk through as possible. 
  5. Sweeten with your choice of sweetener if you choose; stevia, honey, agave, etc.
  6. ENJOY!!!
Can store in the fridge for a couple of days. 
Dont forget to keep the almond pulp to make some yummy raw chocolate!

Sunday, 11 March 2012

SUNSCREEN - What is really in it?



We are told every day to keep covered up and slip slop slap... The sun is bad! The sun will give you skin cancer! Don't stay out too long!


For those of you who know me personally you know I am a bit of a sun addict, well a total sun addict! It is one of my favourite things in the world and for so many reasons! 


Ok so I know that the sun can give you skin cancer; I witnessed my dad coming home from the doctor or hospital on a regular basis all wrapped up in bandages from getting chunks taken out of him. He was diagnosed with a a few different types of skin cancers; one time having over 200 stitches in his head and wrapped up like Frankenstein. He over did it. He grew up in the era of not knowing any better and being a complete surfy dude he didn't care. 
Does this make me scared of the sun? NO WAY! 
After all that, he still made it very clear to us that the vitamin D from the sun is so important and it is really something we cant live with out! What surprises me though is that in our sun filled, beachy country up to 80% of women and 70% of men are deficient in vitamin D. Why is this? Is it because we are too scared to get out in the sunshine in case we will get cancer?
We shouldn't be!! There is nothing better than laying on the beach with a book and enjoying the sunshine. We know so much more now than what we did back when my dad was growing up. We know that its not a good idea to bake our bare bodies in the middle of the day or bake for hours on end. 
We are told to save ourselves by lathering up in sunscreen. So what is in sunscreen that is saving us? Most sunscreens are made up of chemicals that block or absorb UV-A and UV-B rays getting through to the skin which is said to prevent skin cancers. Unfortunately these chemicals also block Vitamin D; getting through to the skin which is contributing to cancer and promoting nutritional deficiencies.






Chemical sunscreens include the following ingredients:
  • Benzophenones (dixoybenzone, oxybenzone)
  • PABA and PABA esters (ethyl dihydroxy propyl PAB,  glyceryl PABA, p-aminobenzoic acid, padimate-O or octyl dimethyl PABA)
  • Cinnamates (cinoxate, ethylhexyl p-methoxycinnamate, octocrylene, octyl methoxycinnamate)
  • Salicylates (ethylhexyl salicylate, homosalate, octyl salicylate)
  • Digalloyl trioleate
  • Menthyl anthranilate


These chemical blockers create free radicals. These free radicals then react with other molecules that damage fats, proteins and DNA of the cells. This type of damage leads to aging and the development of cancer. CANCER?? Yes these chemical sunscreens can lead to cancer!!! 
Anything that you put onto your skin goes into your body and through your blood stream. The longer you leave them on your skin the worse it can be. Some researching doctors believe that chemical sunscreens actually cause more deaths of cancer than what they prevent. Others also believe that even though it is proven that chemical sunscreens prevent sunburn there is no scientific proof that they protect against Melanoma. 
Scarier still; alot of these sunscreen chemicals have estrogen like effects that increase likelihood of cancer, birth defects, lower sperm count among other things. The list goes on... it really does and just gets scarier and scarier! The health ranger from naturalnews.com says; "A typical sunscreen product is actually a chemical assault on your body."



So what do we do?

  • STAY AWAY FROM CHEMICAL SUNSCREENS!!!
  • COVER UP in the mid-day sun
  • Use a NATURAL sunscreen. Natural suncreens are Zinc based. Zinc is an amazing thing! It is used for many things and has alot of healing properties. It soothes irritated skin. It is used in nappy rash creams, to heal wounds, and my favourite it dries out pimples. Zinc is also used internally for immune support, fertility and many more great things. Its works in sunscreen as a UV absorber. click here to view the all natural WOT NOT sunscreen we stock.
  • Always read the ingredients and do your own research.
  • Most importantly; ENJOY THE SUNSHINE! 
CHOOSE LIFE! LIVE IT! DO IT!


References:

http://www.naturalnews.com/023317_skin_chemicals_products.html
http://www.naturalnews.com/032815_sunscreen_chemicals.html
http://www.skinbiology.com/toxicsunscreens.html
http://www.wotnot.com.au/wotnot-family-products.htm
http://www.nutriherb.net/zinc.html
http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-zinc-oxide.htm

Friday, 9 March 2012

CHOOSE LIFE!: Products

CHOOSE LIFE!: Products: So unbelievably proud to be stocking all these fabulous products! They are all AMAZING products that I personally use and LOVE! If you would like to purchase anything or want to test anything out please dont hesitate to contact me! All equipment is also available to hire so you can try before you buy!
http://chooselifeliveitdoit.blogspot.com.au/p/products.html

Thursday, 8 March 2012

CHOOSE LIFE!: Products

CHOOSE LIFE!: Products: CHOOSE LIFE! stocks some beautifully natural products that are great for your family.  To order, simply send an   email it to cassmichel...

Sunday, 4 March 2012

P's Power Brekky!

As we all hear from every direction; Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! We know that this meal should be nutritious for us and especially for the growing bodies of our little ones.
So why are so many people feeding there kids so much crap? Its so easy to fall for all the marketing campaigns on the TV that tell us that all these bright coloured processed breakfast cereals are so beneficial  for our children! The marketing ploy of the moment is that they have added fibre! WOW! hmmmm.... not! Why do they need to add fibre? Shouldn't fibre be part of the whole grain that the cereal was made with? You would think so wouldnt you? But what I understand happens when products are mass produced is that they strip the whole grain down to only leave the cheap part which has a very low nutrient content. The fibre and good bits that they strip off the whole grain they keep and sell in health food shops. Scary isnt it?

Another point to consider when buying processed cereal is that this cereal is made to taste good so kids love it and parents keep buying it... How do they make things taste good? They add SUGAR! Sugar is highly addictive and I will be writing a post about this soon... Other additives include colours and flavour enhancing chemicals. Even weet bix have sugar in them!

I have also learnt in a recent course I did that puffed grain is toxic to our bodies; anything flash heated... That includes cornflakes, rice cakes, rice bubbles, puffed wheat; all puffed grains! A study was taken that was never published studying 4 groups of subjects that were given different diets including puffed grains, vitamins, whole wheat and another group was given nothing at all. The group that ate a variety of puffed grains and vitamins died first within 2 weeks. The next group died after a month and they were fed nothing so it proved that the first group didn't die of malnutrition. It is believed that the pressure of the puffing process may produce chemical changes in the proteins, which turn a nutritious grain into poison. Another study was done with cornflakes and also had a similar result. Although to add; the group that died first that ate the cornflakes also displayed schizophrenic behaviors which led to convulsions before they died. It sounds very scary so better to keep away from it if you can.

PUFFED GRAINS = TOXIC!
ROLLED GRAINS = absolutely fine!

Best advice I can give when it comes to breakfast is keep it simple, keep it unprocessed! Its not hard to throw a few things together to help you kick start the day.

What do we eat for breakfast in our house?


At the moment I am really addicted to smoothies and juices so after a herbal tea or lemon water I hit the juicer or blender and that keeps me going for a few hours.

I have always started my daughters day with some sort of porridge and fruit. When she was born I did fall for the baby rice cereals... I wasn't convinced as I always try to make my own before i buy the packet but went with what everyone was telling me to do... I vaguely remember another mum mortified that I wasn't adding rice cereal to every meal... "You have to as its got iron in it! They need the iron!" I have learnt alot since then and the next baby I will be eager and happy to make my own as its so easy and so much more nutritious; its highly unlikely that the boxed stuff would be made from whole grains, etc.

This website has some great easy recipes;

http://wholesomebabyfood.momtastic.com/cereals.htm

Once I ran out of my first box of baby rice cereal I was determined to never buy it again. I just started making porridge from organic rolled oats or quinoa flakes and mixing with fruit. We now just go with quinoa flakes as they are soooooooo easy and quick to cook or not cook. You can eat them either way. Quinoa is great as its gluten free and high in protein which keeps the growing body going. I like to add a few super foods as I want to know my babe is getting a good kick first thing in the morning! I add chia seeds; they are super easy to sprinkle on. Chia seeds are very high in nutrition that is essential for healthy diet including Omega 3, dietary fibre and protein as well as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. We also add goji berries or blueberries or both which are also very high in nutrients and add to give a bit more of a taste.
Follow the recipe below or create your own power brekky! Double the batch and make some for yourself too if you like cereal. The recipe below might not be too tasty for everyone but I have the belief that our children dont know any different at such a young age as their tastes haven't been manipulated by added sugars etc. If you need something extra for the taste add some raw honey or more fruit.

P's POWER BREKKY recipe


1/3 cup quinoa flakes
1 tbls chia seeds
1 tbls goji berries or blue berries or both
1/3 cup warm-boiling water
1 tbls organic natural yogurt

Mix quinoa, chia seeds, Berries and water and let sit for 2-10 mins. Mix in natural yogurt and enjoy! EASY!


CHOOSE LIFE! LIVE IT! DO IT!



Saturday, 3 March 2012

Stirring Change - Turn your food to medicine

Today I attended a course called Cultured run by Georgia at  Stirring change. If you have not heard of her... you must check her out at www.stirringchange.com

She is hands down one of the most passionate inspiring people I have ever met and she was actually the one to inspire me to start studying again. I first attended her "Get Cultured" course at college. She has done such an amazing amount of research into every diet possibly known to man! I learnt so much in one day I just wanted to know more and more so a couple of days later I enrolled in the advance diploma of naturopathy.

She explains that so much of our body is run by our guts and that if the bacteria is wrong it inters with everything. Unfortunately due to all the foods we eat most peoples bacteria in their belly's is terrible and thats why so many people have digestive issues, allergies, etc. 70% of the body is run through the gut and if the bacteria isn't right it screws everything else around. A very interesting fact is that when a baby is born their bellies are born sterile so they have absolutely no bacteria in there... that isn't great as there is nothing in their little digestive system to fight off the bad guys. This is why natural birth and the gut health of the mother is so important. When a baby is born naturally; it enters the world through the birth canal opening its mouth on the way down. The baby takes the bacteria from the mothers birthing bits and that is its gut bacteria for the rest of its life. Scary I know but that is why through pregnancy mothers should try to keep the best bacteria they can in there systems.

How do we get the good guys back into our guts?

PROBIOTICS! A great way to have healthy gut bacteria is to take a probiotic every day. This does not mean you should be going out buying the little yogurt flavoured drinks in the supermarket that claim to contain loads of good bacteria. The truth is that these are filled with sugar which actually feed the bad bacteria and breed more symptoms of candida, etc.

If you are interested in taking a probiotic go to a good health food store or see a naturopath and they will lead you in the right direction.

Another way to get all these great good bacteria is to eat fermented food! Kim chi, Sauerkraut, real pot set yogurt, kombucha, Kefir. You dont need to buy these from the shops as most things sold in shops is mass produced and they dont have as high medicinal value. Making them also saves alot of money for people on a budget. Probiotics are expensive and only usually contain a few different strains of bacteria... These traditional fermented foods contain hundreds of thousands of different strains of natural bacteria. If you are interested in making these definitely check out Georgia's website and book into a workshop. She is amazing! Its very hands on which makes the process alot less scary. Not only did I learn some amazing things but I took home 2 jars of fermented foods to brew over the next few days. I cant wait to try them!

I was so totally excited tonight on the way home I bought 2 young coconuts and have started brewing some coconut yogurt! I even opened a coconut with a knife for the first time (you dont know how many times I have tried and failed; usually only being able to put a whole in to get the water.). I cant wait to try it in 12 hours. I will let you know how it goes!

 In the mean time; BE INSPIRED!
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