Tag: healthy eating

Feeling Fabulous

If you have been following my Instagram feed, you will have noticed quite a few images of fruit, veg and healthy snacks. My sister asked if I was on a diet. While the answer to that is no, I am trying to eat better. I’ve written before about not having much energy, and whether it’s down to lack of sunshine, a poor diet or just laziness, I’m trying to change things up a bit. Which is why I signed up to the Keeping Healthy Getting Stylish eCourse, 12 Weeks to Feeling Fabulous. Click on the image below to find out more (and sign up!).

feeling fabulous

My aim throughout the course is to try and get my mojo back. At the start of last year, I was quite restrictive in my diet. I lost a bit of weight, which was ace, but then I fell off the wagon in epic style and put all the weight back. Not great. And this has been happening for years and years… Not a great way to live. So I decided that enough is enough. I need to eat for healthy and energy, exercise because it’s good for me, not because it’s on my to do list and try to improve my self-confidence. It’s not easy, because when it comes to me, I’ll take the easy option thanks! So getting a takeaway, sitting on the sofa, being a couch potato, yep, love that. But I know it’s not good for me and I know it’s not good long term. (Plus, I can’t fit into most of my ‘work clothes’. Not great.) I didn’t want to go on *another* restrictive diet, where I’m ‘good’ while I’m on it, then stuff my face when it’s over. That shit makes me miserable. And life is waaay too short for that! So I decided what I needed was a new perspective. And that’s where Feeling Fabulous came in.

Honey porridge

Some things I get right, day in, day out. Like breakfast. I’m pretty much a creature of habit with this. Here’s my Winter Breakfast: Porridge, banana, flax & sunflower seeds, local honey and cinnamon. I also drink plenty of water throughout the day and don’t drink too much tea or coffee throughout the day. And while I may go on about drinking lots of wine and gin on Twitter, in reality, I’m a real lightweight and can take it or leave it. What I needed to work on are things like making sure I eat more fruit and veg, sort out portion control and reduce my carb intake. I have a slight carb addiction but my tummy is no longer happy with that and doesn’t like too much bread, white flour/rice and processed junk.

Fruit, seeds and yoghurtI’ve started eating more fruit, which is the easy bit, and have gone for more exciting fruits, like watermelon, pineapple and raspberries, rather than just sticking with apples, because, lets face it, apples are pretty dull. I’ve also added more seeds to my diet and have also tried goji berries and pomegranate seeds. I’ve added more veg to my diet, but think there’s still room for improvement on that score so next week, I am going to try making my own green smoothie, with spinach and avocado. This is a big deal for me, as I am super fussy, but what’s the harm? I’ve been trying new things left, right and centre:

Itsu veg juiceI tried both of these from Itsu last week. I really liked the juice, which I did not expect, mainly because it contains broccoli, my pet hate veg. But it was lovely. The coconut water, on the other hand, was vile and I couldn’t drink it. Gross! I’ve also been thinking about the products I use on my skin too. I’ve started using shampoo and conditioner from Lush and, inspired by Laura, who runs the blog and the ecourse, I’m going to be trying out vegan nail polish and organic body cream and makeup.

natural beauty productsI’ve started exercising again too, beyond walking Poppy. I’ve been doing the Davina McCall Fit in 15 DVD, which is really good. It’s not too long and it makes a nice change from the 30 Day Shred. I’m also going to a Body Combat class later on today, which I used to go to all the time and loved it! No idea why I stopped going. I love a good roundhouse kick and uppercut punch πŸ˜‰

So that’s what’s going on with me right now. This doesn’t mean that I am not eating the odd Thai takeaway or slice of carrot cake, as I am, just in balance with the rest of my diet. After all, a little of what you fancy does you good. Just as long as it’s a little! If you’ve got any tips or suggestions, I’d love to hear them! What exercise are you doing at the moment? Do you find it helps you feel better?

Review – Companion, Natural Bread Co cafe

Every now and then, you stumble across a cafe that just ticks all the boxes. Not too busy but there’s enough of a bustle that there’s a good vibe. Great food. Attentive staff, but not overwhelming. Good location. For me, The Natural Bread Company cafe, Companion, on Little Clarendon Street, Oxford, is pretty much my ideal cafe right now.

cakes and pastries

They sell an amazing selection of cakes, to eat in or take away.

fresh bread

They also have one of the best and most unusual ranges of bread I have ever seen. I could quite happily eat them all!

veggie breakfast

I was quite looking forward to having some toast but when we arrived, I saw that they were serving a veggie breakfast, with the option of adding a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice for a bit extra. I decided to give it a go. I was not disappointed, especially as I’m on a bit of a health kick. Check out all that veg and healthy goodness! There was plenty of mushrooms, cherry toms, bread, beans, two fried eggs (my favourite) and some manchego cheese. I have never thought of having cherry tomatoes with a cooked breakfast, but they were such a great addition. I love freshly squeezed orange juice and this was worth paying extra for. (Forgive me, but I was in such a blissful state that I can’t remember how much extra the juice was!)

fresh oj

The cafe had such a lovely atmosphere, with a variety of people enjoying their Sunday morning breakfasts, people popping in getting their coffee & pastries to go, friends catching up. Lovely. We also got a sandwich and a cake to go for later, which, of course, was completely delicious. If you’re out and about in Jericho, then do pop in. You won’t be disappointed.

Tuesday Treat – nakd bars

February. Isn’t it great getting January out the way? It was a crazy busy month for me and now I’m paying the price with a horrible cold. In a bid to delay the onset of the cold (it’s been lurking for about two weeks) and to eat more fruit & veg, I’ve been looking for ways to make fruit and veg more exciting. I’m a really fussy eater, made worse by being vegetarian. You’d think being vegetarian would mean I eat plenty of vegetables. Alas, this is not the case. Sadly, there are no vegetables in fizzy cola bottles. And I’m lazy and hate cooking (Hello Dominos!). I was feeling really sluggish, so thought I should try eating like a grown up for a change. I’ve started reading Laura’s blog, Keeping Healthy Getting Stylish and it’s full of great healthy eating tips and I noticed that she’d eaten one of these.

nakd bars

I am in love with these nakd bars and the coco delight and berry cheeky flavours are my favourite. They are a great way for me to eat more fruit (one bar counts as your one of your five a day) and they’re made from natural ingredients (so no added sugar). I could eat them all day long, but limit myself to one a day, max. I’ve also been eating massive salads and more fresh fruit, as well as limiting my junk food intake (haven’t eaten any cola bottles in nearly 2 weeks!). As I’ve been poorly, I haven’t yet noticed a change to my energy levels, but it can’t hurt right? I was also going to start exercising again this week, but needing to blow my nose every five minutes has put an end to that. (Did I say that I’ve been ill?!)

Do you manage to eat your five a day? I’d love to hear any healthy eating tips you might have. I need all the help I can get!

{Review} Itsu, Oxford

Last week, I was invited to a complimentary* lunch at the newly opened Itsu in Oxford. I’d never eaten at Itsu before so wasn’t sure what to expect. I really like Japanese food, but as a vegetarian, it can be quite difficult to find places that do veggie food well or affordable. I’m pleased to say that Itsu does. After my cream tea splurge in Cornwall, I was looking forward to eating some healthy food, that wouldn’t cost the earth!

itsu meal

I wanted to try as much as I could so grabbed the veggie club maki rolls (Β£3.19 – 175 cals), the veggie dumplings and noodles potsu (Β£4.99 – 526 cals), some edamame beans (Β£1.99 – 124 cals) and a Cranberry & Elderflower vitsu (Β£1.65 – 60 cals). I loved, loved, loved the maki rolls! They were delicious and you get a generous portion. Perfect for a healthy lunch on the go. I would definitely get these again with a side of edamame beans!

rolls

You get plenty of options of sauces to add and the Itsu website is full of nutritional information about them & all their foods, should you be watching your calories, your salt or your fat intake. I love knowing about that kind of stuff so I can feel virtuous when I get everything in balance!

dumplings

The veggie dumpling potsu is epic! It is full of delicious thick noodles, not too much veg and quite a handful of tasty dumplings. This is the ideal meal on a cold autumn day. The soup is really warming and filling, but it is a messy dish! I dived right in & covered myself in it! The ginger in it is quite strong. I’m not a massive fan of ginger, but I managed to get over myself & eat it! I would order it again as it was very tasty & filling & I felt like I was eating food that was very, very good for me!

I like that everything is packaged well enough for you to take it with you, should you want to take it to the office or the park. If you want to eat in, there are plenty of tables to sit at, free water to enjoy and plenty of people to watch! I honestly felt like I’d done my body a huge favour by eating at Itsu. There were lots of greens and other healthy extras that I wouldn’t normally consider.

I can definitely recommend Itsu and will be eating there again, whether I’m in the mood for the delicious rolls, the warming dumplings or trying some of the other delicious bits and pieces, like the seaweed thins! I was disappointed to see the other veggie potsu, the Superbowl 7 veg can’t be made veggie, due to using fish in the sauce, but it’s not uncommon in Japanese or Thai food. For me, there’s enough there to eat that I like to keep me going, including the Zero Fat fro-yo with warm caramel (Β£2.99 – 175 cals), which was the perfect end to a great meal!

*Even though my meal was complimentary, my review is my honest opinion. Many thanks to Emily at Bottle PR for organising my meal.