Life is for living, having adventures, feeling alive everyday, focusing on the big things like love and joy, being you! You are meant to be here, you are supposed to be living an amazing life and so what are you waiting for?
Yesterday I made time to get in the kitchen, it really has been a while. Busy-ness can really get in the way of doing things we enjoy and so I determined I would be vegan baking all afternoon. I love listening to a podcast, audio book or an inspiring video when I am in the kitchen or doing my chores. As I took out all the ingredients I would be experimenting with I decided on an audio book ‘Angels at my fingertips by Lorna Byrne, a recommendation from a beautiful and very spiritual lady. It is such a beautiful book and an inspiring story. Do you believe in angels? Wether you do or you don’t I am sure you would be intrigued by this awe provoking story.
It is what you do most of the time that counts
There are so many nutrients and all are of great importance to a thriving body, we have our macro nutrients – fat, protein and carbohydrates which are our energy sources and the building blocks, then we have micronutrients which provide us with optimal health. I always feel it is important for me not to isolate or exaggerate one particular nutrient to a large extent because we can lose the bigger picture. Remember, it is our overall eating pattern which is most important, a rainbow of colours, greens, less processed and sugary foods. It is what you do most of the time that counts, not the 20% that you may or may not beat yourself up about. Children in particular have a general notion that it is an all or nothing approach. Who has given them this idea? My young students are shocked when I say I consumed some Oreo’s and or salted peanuts at the weekend as if this is a great sin for me and against my healthy religion, he he.
Are you low in magnesium? How can you tell and what can you do? Read on…
Having said I dislike to pick out a nutrient, I am going to do so in this post, because to be honest I just feel inspired to tell you about magnesium. I feel that this particular nutrient is often ignored and forgotten about and can have a huge impact on our energy levels and is very easily depleted in the body, it is a major cause of migraines and cramps which I seem to be hearing more and more of particularly over the past few weeks. Moreover, it is essential for literally every cell in the body to function, and unfortunately modern farming practices and water accumulation mean our sources of magnesium are very few and far between. There are clear signs of a lack of magnesium, but as with any micronutrient there are some crossover symptoms with other minerals. Signs of a magnesium deficiency may include anxiety, headaches/migraines, cramps, difficulty sleeping, muscle spasms, fatigue, bone/muscle weakness and high blood pressure. Some of these symptoms are very similar to low vitamin D as magnesium is required for vitamin D to function.
“Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiency and it’s the missing cure to many diseases.”
by Norman Shealy, MD, Ph.D, neurosurgeon
There is a suggested link to a reduction of anxiety and the supplementation of magnesium. This is why you often see health companies marketing magnesium as calming. Because of the reasons I cited above it is difficult to get enough magnesium from foods, and so a combination of foods such as nuts, seeds and greens e.g. spinach and either a whole food state magnesium supplement (I purchase mine from cytoplan or nutriadvanced) and or using a pure magnesium oil topically is best.
Plant based recipes for a celebration
As I mentioned at the beginning of the post I was baking yesterday and the purpose (although there doesn’t really need to be one) was to make some dairy free and gluten free goodies to celebrate our neighbours 70th birthday. He is so youthful and is a fabulous singer and so we were to celebrate with him and his family at the local open mic night. The recipes and pics are the results of a few hours baking. I hope you enjoy making them and eating them for your own happy occasion.
Scrumptious chocolate orange brownies
- 50g coconut oil melted with 2 squares of dairy free chocolate
- 150g dates blitzed in a blender with 200 ml coconut milk
- 100g oats blended – blitz in a blender
- 180g ground almonds
- 2 tbsp cashew butter
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp orange extract
- Himalayan salt
- Combine all of the above in a bowl and place into a pre greased (coconut oil) baking tin. Bake in a pre heated oven for 20-30 minutes.
- Take out of the oven to cool for a while and sprinkle walnuts and or cashew pieces on top – press in slightly.
- Then place in the fridge/freezer for about half an hour when you can cut into pieces.
Option: decorate with cashew cream – recipe below
- Flax egg – 1tbsp ground flaxseed with 3 tbsp water (leave for 10/15 minutes)
- 100g oats blitzed into oat flour
- 100g dates blitzed in the blender with 4 tbsp coconut milk
- 150g ground almonds
- 2 bananas – mash
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp cashew/almond nut butter or tahini
- 3 tbsp date nectar (options to use are rice malt syrup/carob)
- Himalayan/sea salt pinch
- 1 or 2 tsp cinnamon
- a handful of walnut pieces optional to add into the mix.
1. combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and then place into muffin cases
option: pipe on cashew cream as you can see in the picture
Heavenly Chocolate Cashew cream
- 200g cashews soaked in water overnight – drain and rinse when ready to use
- 100g dairy free chocolate melted
- 1 tbsp of cashew butter/another nut butter
- 100g dates
- 100ml coconut milk
- pinch of himalayan or sea salt
- Blitz everything together in the blender until smooth and creamy. Place in the fridge/freezer for 30 minutes or so until the right consistency for piping. Then add into the piping bag and top your plant based goodies.
references and helpful links:
Magnesium deficiency induces anxiety and HPA axis dysregulation: Modulation by therapeutic drug treatment
Popkin B.M. Global nutrition dynamics: the world is shifting rapidly toward a diet linked with noncommunicable diseases. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 2006;84:289–298.
Coppen A., Bolander-Gouaille C. Treatment of depression: time to consider folic acid and vitamin B12. J. Psychopharmacol. 2005;19:59–65.
WHO, 2004. Global burden of disease report.
Vitamin D status in pediatric irritable bowel syndrome.