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Are smoothies and juices healthy?

Smoothies and juices are healthy, right? Well, the answer is not always so straight forward. Smoothies are made by blending ingredients, like fruits or vegetables with a liquid to make a thick, smooth drink. You drink the whole fruit because the entire thing has been pulverized. A juice is made by extracting the juice from fruits or vegetables, giving a much thinner liquid and a fibrous pulp which is discarded. Smoothies and juices are thought of as very healthy foods. They both contain fruits and vegetables and therefore contain lots of vitamins and minerals. However a study looking at the absorption of three meals based on apples, showed that apple juice (devoid of fibre) could be consumed

Don't want to catch a cold?

Prevention is better than cure, so it is important to keep our immune system strong, especially during the colder months when there all sorts of nasty bugs flying around. Treat your body right, and you might find that even if you get a cold, you are over it within 24 hours instead of laid up in bed for a whole week. Eating well, sleeping well and minimising stress are the best ways to boost your immunity but is there any evidence for particular foods or supplements? Vitamin C can be helpful for reducing the lengths of colds and severity of symptoms if you’ve been consuming it regularly[1],[2]. If you start when you’re already ill, it’s too late! Vitamin C protects you from infection by stimu

Nothing to grumble about in THIS crumble!

Apple crumble is one of my family’s favourite desserts, and here I have given it a healthy makeover. The refined sugars that are present in regular crumble toppings are replaced with complex carbohydrates (oats), omega-3 fatty acids (flaxseeds), healthy fats (olive oil and coconut) and fibre (oats and flaxseeds). Although coconut sugar is still a sugar and should not be used liberally, it has a lower glycaemic index than white sugar and contains minerals, whereas white sugar contains “empty calories”, i.e. providing no nutritional benefit. So tuck into my healthy version of this well-loved dessert – enjoy every guilt-free spoonful! For the fruit: 2 baking apples and 2 pears (but you can use

Some very special clients

Running a private practice, my clients are usually (but not always) able to afford to buy fresh quality food and whatever supplements I might recommend them. Since I have started volunteering one day a week at Camden Carer's Service (CCS), I've been truly humbled by my clients from there. The Nutrition Project at CCS offers one-to-one nutritional therapy consultations to full-time carers. I am part of a team of nutritional therapists that runs these sessions. Workshops, demonstrations and support groups are also part of the offerings from the health team at CCS. I have been amazed by the willingness of my clients to make positive changes in their life, whilst clearly being under much pressur

You can't believe everything you read!

Food is always in the news. One day wholemeal bread is good for you and the next it's going to give you heart disease. Every day there is a different headline about an innocent item of food - what are we to believe? Well the researchers have found the same thing - in fact, they did a study on the quality of nutrition coverage in five national newspapers for 6 weeks in 2014. The study has just been published in the British Medical Journal and the researchers concluded that the British public are exposed to a very poor quality of nutrition information in the newspapers, particularly regarding weight management and obesity. It's no wonder then that we receive so much inconsistent information an

Do we really need to detox?

Detoxification. It’s a buzz word this time of year – people are looking to “detox” after the holiday season - but what does detoxifying mean, and is it something we ought to be doing? The good news is that our bodies are detoxifying all the time. Our kidneys and liver are our organs of detoxification that work round the clock to filter out any toxins from our blood, break them down and excrete them. We don't need to do a special "spring clean" every January - our bodies know what to do. However, these days, we are often bombarded with more potentially harmful substances than our bodies can deal with, for example, medicines, recreational drugs, caffeine, garden chemicals, exhaust fumes, p

Have your cake AND eat it!

At this time of year, people's thoughts often turn to getting in shape and achieving those health goals. Cake does not often figure highly on the list of things we should be eating if we are trying to do those things, but here is a delicious every-day cake that's bursting with healthy ingredients. No refined sugar or white flour in this baby - it's got vitamins, protein and even omega-3 fatty acids ( if you add the walnuts). When I make it, I substitute xylitol for sugar, and use wholemeal spelt flour. For the recipe, click here