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?

Friday, 29 January 2016

What Is Candida and How Did I Get It?

Hi all as promised here is some info on Candida which I have been suffering with for quite a while but since finding out I have been doing all I can to get rid of it, be warned this is a wordy post. 

First of all "What is candida?" I hear you say well.......

Candida is a yeast that lives in all of us but when it becomes an overgrowth it can cause all number of problems in the body like fatigue, weight gain, joint pain and gas...not pleasant. 

The main causes of candida overgrowths are:

Diet: Yep candida is a yeast so it loves sugar and anything that converts to sugar to feed on, as we all know these days our diets are usually overloaded with way to much sugar from chocolate to refined grains and alcohol to name a few. Problem is once you get an overgrowth of candida it starts to make you crave more and more sugar and if you are unaware you have it you won't realise your just feeding it and making it grow stronger which will also make it spread to more of your body's organs. Not Good. Its not just sugary food either anything that contains yeast and fungus will feed it too and these are also things you will crave. 

Antibiotics: This being the most common reason for getting an overgrowth, antibiotics while killing the bad bacteria they are being taken for they will also kill the good bacteria that lives in your gut causing all sorts of havoc for your insides. By killing the good bacteria in your gut it can leave your body defenceless against candida which is fast growing and dominates the small intestines. 

Stress: Hmmm well I think we can all relate to this...when we are stressed our body releases higher levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) which in turn makes us feel fatigued and can lead to eating sugary foods to get a quick fix. This then weakens the immune system which can lead to a candida overgrowth, JOY!

The Pill: Yep unfortunately taking the pill can cause candida, because the pill can cause hormone imbalances in your body it can also mess up the stomachs microorganisms and yeasts it uses to digest foods....hello candida!

Diabetes: High blood sugar levels can feed the already present candida in the body which can lead to an overgrowth, it is more common in diabetic women. 

So now you know what it is and how you can get it let me tell you how I got it......

April 2014 I was suffering with quite bad acne on my face and could not take it anymore so I gave in and went to the doctors to see what could be done. Five minutes in and I was being told my only option was to take a course of antibiotics, I asked if there was not a cream or something else as I did not want to take antibiotics and doctor said yes but they wouldn't work as well, he also said his daughter had the same acne as me and she had taken these tablets and it had cleared up never to come back again.....hmmmmm I was being convinced. I asked if they would play about with my stomach and he said no, it just kills off the bacteria on my face and shouldn't cause any other problems....ok so I thought I'd give it a go......

At first the antibiotics did a good job and my skin seemed to be clearing up so I was happy enough although I was still getting outbreaks. I took the antibiotics for 3 months and when I went back was told I needed another 3 months...so I carried on taking them, after 4/5 months my skin was getting worse again, I went back when the second 3 months was nearly up and was told best to take them for another 3 months because they hadn't worked yet.......I was not happy with this but put my trust in the doctor and hoped they would start working again......

8 months and my skin was worse then when I had gone the first time, I stopped taking the tablets January 2015 and my god its been down hill since then! My skin has been the worst it has ever been, I have spots on my face, chest and back and have had for the past year which is pretty bloody horrid. I went back to the doctors to show them what had happened since stopping the antibiotics and they offered me more but a different kind....NO THANK YOU!

Being at my wits end I went to see a Kinesiologist I know just before Christmas last year and she told me I had a candida overgrowth pretty much over all my organs which has been causing me to feel fatigued, disinterested, giving me stomach issues, giving me crazy sugar and yeast cravings, which unbeknown to me I had been feeding and it was causing my bad skin....happy christmas to me! 

This was definitely not the best news especially before Christmas so I was advised to do the best I could over the festive period and then from January first really knuckle down and do the candida fighting diet. 

I actually did pretty well over Christmas and New Year and have stuck to the diet since. Its very restrictive I suppose but manageable if like me you are used to making your own food and looking for alternatives. For the diet you have to keep Sugar, Yeast, Lactose and Gluten off the menu as well as sweeteners and other additives. You basically need to make everything from scratch and if your not making it you need to be reading every label to check the ingredients. I actually had candida a few years ago now so I am well aware of the diet and how to do it so it was not too much of a hardship. The worst thing has been not eating anything sweet but the cravings have slowly disappeared and now I am fine with the no sugar thing. I have a follow up appointment next week to see where I am and how my body is responding, fingers crossed its all good news I am definitely feeling 10 times better then I was although my skin is not improving as much as I would like....when it does I'll have some comparison pics for you thats if I can get over how bad the spotty ones are! 

If you've managed to get to this point in the post without going to sleep well down you, I shall leave it there though as I don't want to bore you! 

Stay tuned for some more posts on candida friendly meals and snacks that have helped me through the past few weeks and how I plan to continue on with my sugar free lifestyle even if the candida has gone : )

Question:

Have you ever suffered with Candida?

Thursday, 21 January 2016

A Belated Happy New Year and 2015 Catch Up

A very belated Happy New Year to one and all! 

(photo source here)

I hope you all had a fabulous Christmas and New Year? I worked pretty much all of it, I did have New Years Eve off though which was nice, much quieter then normal but I was happy with that : )

2015 was a pretty great year all in all, lots of ups a few downs but mostly a bloody good ride and 2016 is looking like it might be even better so I am excited to see what the coming year will bring. I thought it might be nice to have a little look back on some of my highlights from last year before we get on to a little revelation on why I have been rather absent from blogging and for the last couple of months  have been feeling out of sorts but first the pictures.....

Fun Times


I got to be a bridesmaid for one of my best friends and it was the most glorious day of love


I went to my 7th Glastonbury festival and it rocked!


Me and my friend Jo went and hung out in Berlin for a long weekend. 


I added some more art to my body,  I actually got a few more then this but don't have any pics....


To end the year I got to spend Christmas day with the guys at work who have literally changed my life! The one big thing about last year which made it the most awesome was my job, I can't express enough how this job has changed my life around, I love the people I support and they have taught me so much about myself and although they might not understand how they have changed and enriched my life they really have and I can't thank them enough : )


I did lots of other stuff too like going to the Wildlife Festival in Brighton to see Years and Years and Disclosure, Dales mum got married, we went to lots of birthday parties, met up with friends and had too many laughs to mention and got to watch a great Bruce Springsteen tribute band whist drinking local cider sitting on the beach. I also got to do all sorts of things with the guys at work, I can definitely look back at 2015 and smile!

So those were a few highlights of my year there has been one particular low that only recently came to light and I won't go on too much about it today I'll leave that for another post but it now makes sense to me why I have been feeling so run down the past few months and why blogging or doing anything that means sitting and thinking was off the agenda. Just before Christmas I got told my body was raging with Candida and I am sure you all know what that is but if not wait till my post on it and you'll find out all, having this build up in my body has left me tired and disinterested in anything I have to think about really but I am currently on the Candida diet and things are looking up which is probably why I woke up today and thought "I really wanna blog!" Keep a look out for my next post all about how I got Candida, how it was affecting me and how I am getting rid of it. 

Question:

Was 2015 good for you?

Tell me something you look back on from last year that makes you smile......go! 

Saturday, 19 December 2015

All Hail Planet Organic

Hi you guys, my god can you believe its going to the Christmas next week?! I know I can't, this year has probably been the best I've had in ages although not in my blogging life. I know I know I have spent the year promising more posts but it just hasn't happened due to other work commitments so maybe a new year goal for me is to get back to my blogging which I would definitely love to do, I miss writing and sharing things with you guys but thats another post all together. 

Todays post is all about some awesome goodies I got to try from Planet Organic. The following products are just so good I can't say a bad word about them, they were a joy to eat and if like me you like to choose healthy products that don't fail on flavour you gotta treat your taste buds to these. All of these products are filled with fabulous ingredients and are perfect for anyone eating paleo, gluten free, raw or vegan, so without further a do lets have a look at all the yumminess.......

Paleo Granola


I, as many of you know, am a big lover of granola so I was more then happy to try these two paleo granolas. I was sent Chocolate and Sweet Greens both of which tasted great.


A small bowl for breakfast keeps you full for ages and they are so different it was an exciting way to start the day, I love the colour of the Sweet Greens! Perfect for snacking too...you can never have to much granola! 

Rawkin Roons & Kale Krackers 


Well the salted caramel rawkin roons didn't even last long enough for the photo these are some tasty little treats which could easily become addictive, the salted carmel and coconut just work so well mmmmmmm. The sundried tomato and pesto kale krackers are packed full of seeds and I loved the flavour especially dipped in soup : )

Raw & Organic Bars


Now I love a snack bar, great to pop in ya bag for those "need to eat now!" moments and its even better if the bar in question is actually healthy right? Well these two bars are raw and organic as well as bursting with healthy ingredients. I got to try the Cacao Nut and Brazil and the Chia and Vanilla bars both of which were very tasty.

Raw Chocolate Covered Goji Berries and Almonds


These little bags of goji and almond joy are just so yummy and they have the added bonus of having bio live cultures added to the antioxidant rich raw chocolate to make you feel great...my kind of treat! 

Raw Chocolate Hazelnut Butter


Last but definitely not least is this little jar of loveliness and believe me it is lovely! Smooth chocolate and hazelnut butter with the finest cacao nibs, it tastes just like the centre of a ferrero rocher chocolate which I used to love but unfortunately cannot eat due to not being gluten free so this is a great alternative for me! I will admit I just ate this straight up out of the jar and it didn't last very long so I am going to need to invest in some more cause its just too good....new addiction here I go : )

Do I need to say anymore, these products are great. So if you know anyone that loves raw foods and healthy products that taste great go buy these, perfect for a tasty stoking filler....Dale!

Question:

Have you tried any of these goodies, what did you think?


Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Happy 34 to Me

Happy 1st of December everyone! Can you believe its nearly 2016?! I can't, this year has really gone quick but I gotta say its been the best year I've had in a long time but I shall be doing a post on that later in the month. 

November ended with me turning 34, another thing I cannot believe, I'm 34!! 


I had a wonderful birthday and for once I actually didn't go out so was fresh and ready to enjoy my birthday on Sunday. We got up and had a breakfast of gluten free croissants and almond milk latte's which was a very tasty start to the day. After a bit of lounging we headed of to Brighton for the day to get my birthday present, have some lunch and have a nose round the shops. We had a lovely lunch at Pho and although it was insanely windy the day was lots of fun. Then in the evening Dale's mum cooked us dinner and we chilled round hers. A very relaxed day turning 34 : )


What else happened last month? Well the last half of November was manic I did lots of overtime and attended a couple of days training which was great, I love it when work training is actually interesting and you come away feeling enlightened and ready to put what you've been taught into action! 

My diet hasn't been really that good the past month especially last weekend so I've decided to eat a lot more vegetarian food for the next few weeks like the above potato and veggie dish with loads of garlic and chilli. I'm well aware that Christmas is upon us and the rich foods at this time of year are all around so the more veggies I can get eating the better! 


Something else I got to do in November was try these new snack bars from Perkier. I'm a sucker for a snack bar, they are great to keep in your bag for those "I NEED FOOD" moments which I can get a lot when at work I can tell you! Perkier have created these yummy quinoa bars and an oat option, all gluten free and vegan which is a big tick for lots of us. I have enjoyed trying out the bars and have to say my favourite was the oat bar. The bars are quite sweet so I wouldn't eat them all the time but would definitely choose them again if I had a sweet tooth calling out for a fix! If you like snack bars I would say give these a go and see what you think. 

November was a great month and I can only imagine that December is going to be just as good, I have lots of things planned and lots of overtime to work so another busy month but thats all good for me. I hope you had a great November and are looking forward to all the festivities of the coming month : )

Question:

Have you tried the new Perkier bars, what did you think?

Thursday, 19 November 2015

November So Far

Hello peeps hows the month of November going for you? I have been up to all sorts of things most of them being lots of fun which has also meant this month has flown by rather quickly. I can't believe there are only 11 more days left of November!


So what have I been doing with my time? Well I went to Battle bonfire one the 7th which was lots of fun, I am a sucker for a night of fireworks, loud drums and fire! 


Two of my good friends have opened up a new tattoo shop just down the road from my house and I finally got some time and spare cash to pop in and get myself a little something. My new thunder cloud fits perfectly, I love it! You can check out my friends studio over at Spread Eagle Tattoo



I've been enjoying some warming foods lately now the weather has changed like bowls of porridge, homemade soups, curry's packed with warming chilli flavours and salads with warm potatoes and chilli oil to up the heat. Dale has definitely done well with my hot food training I eat way more food with heat these days which makes him and my tastebuds happy! 


I've been sent some products to review from a couple of companies one being Perkier foods which as always is a perk of the blogging world, you'll have to keep an eye out for my review posts coming soon featuring some fab products. 

One more thing that has been brightening up my November and I mean lets face it this month is turning out to be pretty hideous for the world as a whole, devastating news every time you turn on the TV or look at your phone does not make for much happiness but then I get a message from my little sister with this face staring at me......


...and suddenly I can forget for a while all the sadness and feel some joy, my little nephew Joey definitely brings me joy, he is just too cute! 

So thats my month so far, this weekend I am hopefully going to a 70's roller disco and the last weekend of November I will be turning 34...34!! My god I can't believe it but I gotta say I am loving my 30's a lot more then 20's so its all good : )

Question:

What brings you joy when there is so much sadness?

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Currently......



To say its been a while is an understatement! I took some time off blogging. Why? Because I needed some time out, time to just be me, get on with my job and have fun with friends and family and I have to say its been a fun couple of months but now I miss writing my blog so I guess its time to get back to it.

I thought a Currently post would be fitting for my first blog post in a while, to give you guys an idea of what I'm up to so enjoy.

eating....

Well what aren't I eating?! I have a very varied diet these days definitely not as healthy as it used to be but thats only because I think I used to be quite restrictive thinking some foods were off limits. I still eat lots of veg and make most of meals but my sweet tooth is definitely out and proud these days, can't say no to cake....ever! 

drinking....

Lots of green tea, I have been loving Twinings cherry bakewell green tea lately. I still drink coffee but usually just one a day, black with a teaspoon of coconut oil. 

doing....

I'm working loads, still loving my job as a support worker and know it was definitely the right choice of work for me, I'm never one to sing my own praises but I'm pretty good at my job so thats an awesome feeling. I've been doing lots of zen colouring, whats that I here you say, thats colouring for adults. I have been buying colouring books and find if very therapeutic on my days off to just sit and colour all sorts of intricate designs, at work I have 6 adults with learning difficulties wanting a piece of me 24/7 so its nice to just sit and be quiet when I get some time to myself. I still have a few clients that I am training but I have whittled those down to a select few and am enjoying doing the extra work with no pressure to fit everyone in. 

working on....

I am currently working on finding a new place for me and Dale to live, we need more space and would like our own garden so we are on the hunt. We've seen a few places on line that take our fancy so now its time to start viewing which is always exciting. 

watching....

While I'm colouring I love sticking on a good box set and I've been watching The Affair lately which is really good, have you seen it? Me and Dale have been watching the Walking Dead and its getting so good always a cliff hanger! 

loving....

Work, Dale. my friends and being busy.

looking forward to....

Going to Battle Bonfire this Saturday, my fiends leaving do/birthday on the 13th, a roller disco on the 21st, my birthday on the 29th and looking and flats....its gonna be a busy month!


That gives you a little insight to my life right now. I hope you have all been keeping well, I'm looking forward to catching up with all your blogs and finding out what you've been up to. I'm going to try and post at least once a week so I shall see ya in a few days, till then x

Question:

Telling me something current about you...