Wednesday, 22 June 2016

My Favourite Cherry Smoothies featuring Indigo Herbs

Well I could have sworn I wrote a blog post in June but it seems not, better late then though I guess! In my last post I promised to share my cherry smoothie recipes with you so here I am. I've been using cherries and blueberries in my smoothies for the past few months because they don't aggravate my skin, I have actually been cleared to add bananas back into my diet but only on occasion which is great news because we all know how good a frozen banana is in a smoothie. But we're not talking bananas today we're talking cherries so feast your eyes and get blending! 

Cherry and Cashew Smoothie


Ingredients into the blender:

1-2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 scoop of sun warrior vanilla protein powder
1 Tbsp of cashew butter
1 Tbsp Indigo Herbs Super Vital Powder
1-2 cups of frozen cherries (depending how thick you like your smoothies)

Blend! 


Cherry and Chocolate Smoothie


Ingredients into blender:

1-2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 Tbsp cocoa/cacao
1 scoop sun warrior vanilla protein powder
1 Tbsp Indigo Herbs Super Vital Powder
1 cup frozen blueberries 
1 cup frozen cherries 

Blend!


Both these smoothies are vegan and gluten free, filling and delicious perfect breakfast for the warmer months and great after a killer workout. The Super Vital Powder has a nice flavour, not too strong and it packs a healthy punch of Vitamin C and Antioxidants so well worth adding into your smoothies for an extra health boost for the immune system. 

Well thats all from me I'm off to Morocco on Friday so you can keep up to date with my goings on via my Instagram @tamzinsparkles. Enjoy the rest of June folks and I'll see ya in July! 

Question:

Whats your favourite smoothie combo?

Friday, 27 May 2016

May 2016 In Pictures

Hello, how are ya?

I'm pretty good, I've just had a few days off from work which was definitely needed this month has been pretty full on work wise so having time for anything else just hasn't happened. I have managed to take a few pictures over the month though so I can show you what I've been up to and what I've been loving....enjoy!

Smoothies! 



I haven't eaten any sugar for weeks other then adding a few blueberries and cherries to a smoothie once or twice a week which doesn't seem to be upsetting my skin, yay! My favourite combo right now is cherry, blueberry and chocolate with a little added extra from Indigo Herbs SuperVital Powder, a delicious and filling way to start the day now the weather is warmer. I'll post the recipe for this soon. 

Vegan Pesto



I have been making some awesome vegan pesto lately, I decided to make my own because the bought varieties either contain cheese, sugar or are really expensive so making my own just makes sense. This is basil and cashew which I can confirm is bloody lovely, again recipe to be posted soon. 

Coconut Oil


The lovely guys over at Vita Coco were kind enough to send me these two pots of coconut oil and as always I have been using it for all sorts of things from cooking to beauty. Such a versatile awesome product it will never get old for me! 

Herbivore Botanicals



I have been using these yummy products from Herbivore Botanicals, as you know if you read my blog I have been having a nightmare with my skin and having heard rave reviews about Herbivore Botanicals I thought I'd give them a go. I bought the Lapis face oil and Bamboo Charcoal face soap. So far so good the oil is gorgeous and I put it on every night, the soap makes my skin feel so clean, I only use it 2/3 times a week as my skin doesn't like being washed everyday but it seems to be helping yay! 


My skin has improved so much lately that I have actually been wearing my hair up! I may sound crazy but I was so self conscious about my skin that hair down was the only option but now (although my skin is not completely clear) I feel so much more confident I am putting the locks up more often.

Cardiff



I took a couple of the ladies from work to Cardiff for a few days as one of them is a huge Dr Who fan. We went to the Dr Who experience and they really enjoyed their time away which was great, although pretty tiring and sometimes stressful for me it was worth it to see them have a fab time. 

Dog Walking



Having a few days off this week meant I got to take these cuties out for walks, the top one is Dale's sisters dog and we took him for a long walk where Dale goes fishing and he loved it, the other belongs to my friend Stef and he is the cutest Jack Russell. I went to Stefs for the day and we took Eddie out for a walk then went to hers to look through some old photos which was hilarious. 


So although I've been MIA round here I have been busy working and enjoying life this side of the screen. I know I always say it but I am hoping to blog a bit more over the next fews months I have some exciting things coming up and stuff I want to share with you so we'll see. 

Question:

Have you had a good May?




Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Candida and Acne Update

Hello all, I hope your having a good April even if its nearly over! In my last post I threatened to be back with a bit of a moan and here I am, get ready to be moaned at.....

If you've read my blog for a while you will know that in December last year I found out I had Candida, due to taking antibiotics for nearly a year, as well as suffering from some horrible acne on my neck/jawline/back and chest. Well I did the Candida diet for 5 weeks and it seemed to clear up, the spots went from my back and chest although they did not clear from my face/neck, I was allowed to introduce some sugar (from fruit) and some food containing yeast. February and March pasted and things were popping into my diet that I probably shouldn't be eating but as they were not on a regular basis I didn't worry to much....ha more fool me! 


A delicious smoothie containing banana and cherries......if only I new this was going to be part of my downfall!

By the beginning of April I was starting to feel really crappy, to the point I was getting light headed and shaky even though I was eating normally so its wasn't down to being hungry. Spots started to appear on my back and chest again and I basically felt bloody horrible plus I have also got some blocked lymph nodes which is a sign my body isn't getting rid of waste properly : ( I went to the doctors to have blood tests which thankfully came back all normal (Candida does not show up on blood tests) and she also confirmed I had blocked lymph nodes but they should right themselves.....hmm ok then!? So I went back to see my Kinesiologist as I needed answers......

Hello CANDIDA!!!!! Yep its back and all over me again, my kinesiologist thinks because I was on the antibiotics for so long as soon as I introduced sugar/yeast back into my diet it just reacted to bring back the Candida joy oh joy and she agreed with my blocked lymph nodes and gave me the most excruciating massage to try an unblock them.

What now? I am back on the diet and have been for a week, I am already starting to feel better though I still get the shaky low blood pressure feeling now and again but that should go once my body really starts to fight off the Candida. I was also advised to try and wash my face with bottled/boiled water as the chlorine from tap water is making my skin worse so I have been boiling water and letting it cool or cooling it with bottled water and using that to clean my face which seems to be helping but my skin is far from fixed and its going to be a long road with lots of experimenting but I am sure it will fix itself in the end.....I bloody hope! I have to go back and see my Kinesiologist in 3 weeks to have my lymph nodes unblocked again and see how I'm doing fingers crossed I'll be on the road to getting better. 

Ok moan over, I have to say I am so fed up but it could be worse I suppose...... I will be doing a "Day in the Life" post soon to share my diet and also let you know about how I have been keeping fit, I'm really enjoying my workouts at the moment and feel my exercise routine is the best its been in while plus I have been trying out some new products which I must share with you guys. 

Right time to get on with getting ready for work later, have a great hump day peeps, see ya soon : )

Question:

Have you suffered from acne, how did you fix it?

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

March Catch Up featuring Nutri-Bombz and Smoothies!

Hi all, how are we? I'm all good other then an acne nightmare which I will be leaving to another post!  I have a candida and skin update but its a total moan and as I haven't checked in for a while I'll leave the moaning for another time. 

March was a good month, I didn't get up to much really other then work to be honest. I did have my first night out in about 5 months which was hmmmmm drunken and gave me a killer hangover, all worth it though! The other thing I did do was get a new car, I had my rust bucket Ford Fiesta ever since I past way back in 2010 and it finally gave up the ghost which was a little inconvenient but within two weeks I was back on for wheels in a cute little VW Polo which I love! 

Other then work and driving about in my new car there has been two other things I have been enjoying in the form of food.....of course! So carry on reading for some food porn.......

First up is the new to me Nutri-Bombz which I was sent to try out and have fallen in love with. If your a fan of nakd bars then these are for you. 


Nutri-Bombz's main ingredients are almonds, cacao, coconut and dates which are then blended with all sorts of super foods to form these little balls of healthy heaven! 


You get 4 packs of 3 nutri-bombz in a box which come in convenient little packs, perfect for popping in your bag ready for a snack attack.


Gotta say all of the bombz I have tried are awesome, each one tastes great but if I had to choose my favourite so far its gotta be the salted caramel.


And they really do taste like salted caramel, if you want to check out the other flavours you can here.


If like me you love a snack but want it to be healthy and filled with fabulous ingredients then look no further and get your chops round some of the bombz! 

The other food I have been eating/drinking a lot of is smoothies, I finally had the money to treat myself to a proper high speed blender so I bought a Froothie 9200A.


My god this blender has transformed my smoothie making, the smoothies come out so smooth even if I add raw unsoaked nuts or berries with pips which is pretty great, all my other blenders have been cheap and really not that great. I would highly recommend, if your looking for a high speed blender, that you check this one out its awesome! 

Me and Dale have been having a smoothie every morning since I bought my froothie and its a great way to start the day, here are some of my favourites......


Cherry, Cashew and Chocolate


Blueberry, Banana and Cashew


Chocolate, Cashew and Banana


Mango and Cacao


Blueberry and Chocolate


Almond Butter, Banana and Chocolate Frappe

I'll make sure to post some of the recipes for these as they are rather delicious and I know lots of you love a good smoothie : ) 

Right time is ticking and I am working tonight so I shall say farewell and see you soon to explain my acne nightmare....bet you can't wait ha! 

Question:

Have you tried Nutri-Bombz?

Monday, 14 March 2016

A Long Weekend In Ireland

It seems like ages ago now since my weekend getaway to Ireland to see the other half of my family. At the end of February me and Dale took a few days off and travelled over to Kilkenny to see my mum and my younger sisters family, we were only there 5 days which was definitely not long enough but we had a lovely relaxing time.  


The weather was absolutely freezing but it only rained once so I'm not going to complain! 



We didn't do very much, a couple of dog walks with the above beauties, some lunches out and lots of sitting by the fire and eating : )



Oh and of course lots of cuddles with this little scamp! My nephew Joey is adorable, what a cutie?! 
I wish we lived closer.....


We lived in our big furry coats and soaked up a little scenery......


And I obviously hunted out the local felines! 



All in all a very relaxing few days, I just wish we could have stayed longer although I was happy to come home to our warm little flat and my furry cat friend who I always miss. 

Question:

Are you getting away anytime soon? 

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Baked Lemon Pepper Cod For Borderfields #isBetter Challenge

Well I guess its about time to pop in and say hi to you guys, February was a very busy month ending with a fab little getaway to Ireland to see my family, although I did manage to pick up the flu which was not so great! I'll do a little post on my time away in the next few days but first up is this long over due post featuring some very tasty oils from the lovely peeps over at Borderfields


I'm a sucker for flavoured oils so when offered to be apart of Borderfields #isBetter challenge I was quick to say yes. Borderfileds make top of the range rapeseed oils which are delicious and versatile, perfect for all your cooking needs. 


I was sent a great range of oils and couldn't wait to start trying them, the basil infused oil is perfect for dressing salads or drizzling over tuna, the chilli and garlic are great for roasting new pots and I made a fabulous cod dish with the lemon oil which is featured below. 

Baked Lemon and Pepper Cod with Coconut Kale, Mushrooms and New Pots


Ingredients:

2 cod fillets
1 lemon
Borderfileds lemon infused oil
salt and pepper

large bunch of black kale
8 mushrooms
10 middle sized new pots - chopped into 4's & par boiled
coconut oil

Method:

Put oven on to heat (180), place the cod in tin foil and before wrapping grate lemon zest onto fillets then sprinkle with black pepper, slice the lemon and lay slices onto fillets then wrap and place on a baking tray. Once oven is at right temp put cod in and bake for 15-20 minutes depending on fillet size.

In a large frying pan add some coconut oil over a low heat. Slice kale and mushrooms, once oil has melted add them to the pan along with par boiled potatoes. Turn the heat up a little and season with salt and pepper. Carrying on cooking until the cod is baked, the pots should be nice and browned by then. 

Plate up the pots, mushrooms and kale add the cod on top and drizzle with Borderfields lemon unfused oil. Eat! 

************************

Boy oh boy this was delicious, cod and lemon is the perfect flavour combo and the coconut thrown in too is a party in the mouth!  


These oils have a massive thumbs up from me, each one has a delicious flavour and I would definitely recommend you trying them if like me your into your cooking oils : )

Question:

Have you tried Borderfileds Oils?

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Candida Diet Safe Meals and Snacks

Hi all, hope your enjoying February so far? This month started full steam ahead for me with a client trip away so I have been in London with one of the ladies I support which has been lots of fun, we went to the Thriller stage show and the Harry Potter Tour which I loved just as much as her, pretty good start to the month right?! 

Now I have some time to pop in and say hi I thought I would share some of the things I have been eating which are safe when doing the Candida diet. Last time I did the diet I lost a lot of weight, felt and looked awful but this time I had a lot more knowledge behind me and was able to eat food which was healing and did't leave me looking gaunt and unwell. I have lost a couple of pounds which was obviously welcomed but thats not from not eating much, I've been eating loads! 

One thing I have been eating on a daily basis is coconut oil, yes the wonders of coconut oil seem to be never ending and if your suffering from Candida then get eating it! Coconut oil is a great anti fungal and has been found to be an effective way to fight the candida yeast. I cook with it, put it on my jacket potatoes, blend it into coffee and even have it for breakfast on rice cakes.....


The coconut oil on rice cakes for breakfast has got to be one of my favourite ways to eat it, simply topped with some salt and pepper its delicious and actually really filling. Other breakfast options have been rice cakes with hummus and cucumber, eggs and veggies or an avocado. 


Snacks can be hard when your looking for stuff without sugar, yeast and gluten but I managed to find a few that weren't just veggie sticks! 


You can't go wrong with a plain pack of crisps, they feel like a naughty treat but with only potato, oil and salt they actually aren't all that bad and can give you the quick fix you need when out and about. 


I was sent these lightly salted lentil waves from Burts Chips to try not long ago and these too are a great snack that don't contain any nasties so something to think about trying. They are really tasty and with only 99 calories you can't go wrong. 


Ok time to confess I have become a complete bombay mix addict! The health food shop I go to in Hastings makes some that has nothing bad in it at all and this is great if you need a snack that isn't boring and kicks a flavour punch, love it! 

Other snack ideas are veggie sticks with hummus or almond butter, spoonfuls of almond butter if like me you can't get enough of it, plain nuts, boiled eggs or an avocado. 

Main meals have come easy to me as I love to make my own food and making everything from scratch is the safest way to make sure there are no hidden nasties. I have been eating a lot of white and sweet potatoes, rice and pasta along with fish, chickpeas and an abundance of veggies. I haven't eaten much meat because so much of it is injected with sugar and antibiotics plus the organic option is so expensive I'd rather not bother. I've also been making my own sauces and dressings because nearly all shop bought options are loaded with sugar in some form, I found one pasta sauce dressing that's safe to eat but can't remember the brand. 


Potatoes are great because they are really versatile and soak up flavour a treat, for this dish I teamed them with chickpeas and veggies and made a sauce with chillies, red onion, garlic and fresh parsley. Fresh herbs are a life savour because they bring so much flavour and they are all natural yay! 


A nice quick lunch I like to make when at home is steamed and raw veggies with tuna, oil, salt and pepper...easy peasy : )


More potato joy which is so simple, this is literally potato and veggies all fried up in coconut oil, lots of garlic is the key and I also par boil my pots to make sure they are nice and soft.


Rice is another versatile ingredient, I use both white and brown for my meals. This was white basmati rice with veggies cooked in coconut oil and topped with a hummus dressing. My hummus dressing is so easy to make I put hummus, almond milk salt and pepper in a pot and mix until it is at my preferred consistency then pour. 

My meals never take more then 30 minutes to make and usually taste pretty dame good as well as being healthy and filling which is a must because you can feel real hungry when cutting sugar. 


Obviously chocolate is out because all sugar is out but there is one treat (if you can call it that!) you are allowed which has been a life saver for me these siesta carob bars have no sugar, dairy or gluten and are safe to eat. I love them although they are quite dry tasting which doesn't bother me Dale on the other hand spat out the piece I gave him so its definitely not for everyone! Worth a try though if your desperate for something. 

I hope this post has been of some help, maybe given you some ideas on what to make and what to eat. The rule really is to make most food yourself because thats the safest way of not eating anything that contains sugar, yeast, dairy and gluten but there are some options out there you can buy you just gotta read all the labels religiously! 

Question:

Whats your favourite sugar free meal or snack?